When I was a Roman Catholic, to whom I was praying was never an issue. I said my memorized prayers and followed it up with the Amen. The Bible was never part of RC teaching, and therefore, I was not acquainted with it.
I am an avid reader and have been reading since the age of seven on many subjects, but never the bible. Occasionally, I would hear quotes from the bible, but I had not personally bothered to search into it for myself at that point.
Then, when I started studying the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses and attending their meetings, I was introduced to how to pray to Jehovah God in the name of Jesus. I had never talked to God on such a personal level but when reading the Holy Scriptures, I was convinced.
NWT – Matthew 6:7
“When praying, do not say the same things over and over again as the people of the nations do, for they imagine they will get a hearing for their use of many words.”
As time passed, I started noticing many things in the JW organization that were contrary to what I believed the Holy Scriptures were teaching me. I therefore became acquainted with biblehub.com and started comparing what was quoted in the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures (NWT) with other bibles. The more I searched, the more I started questioning. I believe the Holy Scriptures should be translated but not interpreted. God speaks in many ways to each individual, according to what he/she can bear.
My world really opened up when someone close to me told me about Beroean Pickets and as I started attending its meetings, my eyes were opened to what it means to be a Christian. I learned that contrary to what I thought, there are many others who have doubts about how JW’s dogma is not what the Holy Scriptures teach.
I am comfortable with what I am learning except for the fact as to how to pray. I know I can pray to Jehovah in the name of Jesus. I am, however, left wondering how to fit Jesus into my life and prayers that is different from what I am doing
I don’t know if anyone else had or faces this struggle and if you solved it.
I will offer this from my own experience. A friend of mine, who left the JWs told me that I should pray to Jesus. I asked guidance on the matter in my prayers and came to the conclusion that I would ask of the Father, in Jesus’ name. This seems in harmony with what Jesus taught.
Hello Elpida This was absolutely a huge issue for me. As a witness I dared not address a single word directly to Jesus, I was taught we should only pray to Jehovah. But then after being out for a while I read John 14:14 in the NWT Interlinear and noticed that the translators had deliberately left out the word “me” so that “if ever anything you should ask ME in the name of me this I shall do” in the Interlinear becomes “If you ask anything in my name, I will do it”. So as a witness if I wanted… Read more »
Oh thank you, Domine. This is so helpful to me to know that you had problems too addressing Jesus. It is getting easier for me but not yet stress-free or natural. I can now put God and Jesus in proper perspective. Thank you so much.
It is a big change. We almost need to “re-program” ourselves. I had a similar battle over the Divine Name and what I should use. These are big things I think for exJWs who still believe in God and Christ
Hi Domine: Yes, I call it unlearning. All we want is The Truth.
Hi Elpida. Almost everyone I know, whom God awakened and drew to His Son (including me), had your prayer problems. Your worries, and perhaps the stress, while praying to Jehovah or talking to Jesus, your loved ones, are the result of manipulation with Bible texts and the mind programming. Why create human rules and sections of the law for approaching God and his Son when we have the Bible? Who can stop you from talking to your beloved Lord and brother? Nobody. Your sentence: “I can now put God and Jesus in proper perspective” is important. Yes, Jehovah is your… Read more »
Hi Frankie: I love the way you have explained that God our Father and Jesus, our Redeemer, knows us well. You’re right, I am stressing and worrying when God already knows what I feel in my heart. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I needed to let go of the guilt I feel and worry about leaving one or the other out. I am grateful for your views and the others who expressed them. I am gaining more confidence in my devotion to God our Father and the Lord. Thank you.
Hi DI, thank you for your experience. You are right, such change (from GB to Jesus) is often big change. It is caused by God’s touch, because Jehovah Himself draws a man to Jesus Christ (John 6:44). I would like to point out John 14:14, where the word “me” is discussed by various biblical commentators. Not only NWT, but also many other translations omit this word. On the other hand, word “me” is in most interlinears, but it is not in all manuscripts that form sources for translations. Interestingly, many biblical commentators in Biblehub work with texts without this “me”. … Read more »
Hello Frankie I love the way you reason on this, thank you. As I read through your comment, other scriptures leapt to my mind which I think add weight to what we are discussing Luke 4:7,8. Jesus, when being tempted by Satan, left us in no doubt who we should worship. “it is Jehovah God you should worship, and to HIM ALONE you must render sacred service” (NWT). We are reminded of this in Rev 22:8,9 when John falls down at the feet of the angel to worship him, and the angel says “Do not do that…. WORSHIP GOD” So… Read more »
Thank you DI, very good scriptures.
That was my biggest struggling when waking up. How to and to whom do I pray. My first year or so my prayers started with just apologies and then addressing every title and name for our Father and then His Son, and even a version of the Trinity just in case. It was the hardest thing to be patient for and to have understanding of. I am now so much more confident in that respect now that I realize that Jesus model prayer actually WAS an example. God IS our Father and we can be more than just acquaintances. We… Read more »
Truthrooster. You’re right. Depending on the religion, each one slants the Holy Scriptures to fit into its dogma.
30 seconds eh? That should have applied to the long winded elders at conventions who would sum up the entire program to God in their ‘final prayer’. and they ALL do it. In my earlist days the cong would quote exactly the paragraph as before us. I would include my own experiences or questions. Later this became the norm then later still as the wts has become ever more controlling the answers went back to the ‘party-line’. Please consider that when ever the wt quotes a scripture read the the chapter either side of it and you will often as… Read more »
Thank you, Zacheus. When I thought about it, like any other written material, you can’t just take a sentence here and there and get the full story.
Thank you for sharing! I feel the same. Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. In this scripture you picture in your mind each person individually experiencing the power of Gods word. I had a similar embarrassing experience at a Sunday watchtower- it hurt being publicly humiliated! The conductor stated that I had to take 30 seconds or less and that’s why I needed to just repeat what is in the paragraph.… Read more »
Thank you London for sharing your thoughts. I was just thinking that how that conductor would have felt if the Father told him to say his prayers within 30 seconds or less.