Jehovah’s Witnesses refer to themselves as being “in The Truth”. It has become a name, a means of identifying themselves as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. To ask one of them, “How long have you been in the truth?”, is synonymous with asking, “How long have you been one of Jehovah’s Witnesses?”
This belief, that they alone, out of all the religions of the world, have the truth, is so ingrained that to test the notion involves far more than in mere intellectual exercise. To ask one of them to scrutinize one of their core beliefs is to ask them to question their identity itself, their worldview, even their self-worth.
This helps to explain the resistance one encounters when trying to expose falsehood and hypocrisy within the Organization, particularly at its highest levels. Rarely will you find an elder or group of elders who are willing to open the New World Translation to calmly and rationally analyze any of their teachings. Instead, a congregation publisher expressing doubts or concerns is treated as a troublemaker and threatened with the label of APOSTATE!
To illustrate this all-to-common reaction, I give you the following correspondence between Nicole, a Jehovah’s Witness sister living in France, and her congregation elders who were charging her with causing division and spreading apostate lies. The letters are all from her. Elders will rarely put anything of this nature in writing because they are directed by the Organization not to do so. Putting things in writing comes back to haunt a person if he is dealing in lies, slander, and falsehood.
In this first of three letters, we have Nicole’s response to an “invitation” to meet with the elders.
(Note: All of these letters have been translated from the original French. I’ve used initials to replace names of elders.)
======== FIRST LETTER ========
Body of Elders under FG,
If I prefer to write to you today rather than meet you, it’s because my state of mind and my anger won’t allow me to speak calmly (one of my weaknesses is controlling my emotions, and in this instance my emotions are intense).
You are partly aware of my questions, my doubts, and my non-acceptance of the Society’s position on certain subjects, including the attitude we are required to adopt towards disfellowshipped family members.
At the last meeting (Tuesday, January 9), FG rightly pointed out, using the example of circumcision on the 8th day, that the Jews didn’t understand why Jehovah chose precisely this 8th day. I couldn’t agree more. Then he asked what application could be made of it?
FM gave the commentary on the disfellowshipping of a family member declaring that even if we didn’t understand, we should trust Jehovah. It’s the way it’s been applied that I have a problem with. The law of GOD (circumcision) has been blithely replaced by the law of Men (the Society’s position that you shouldn’t even answer the phone or text a disfellowshipped person).
In short, we must obey because it’s GOD’S law.
NO ! In this case it’s a human interpretation; it’s not GOD’S law, it’s MAN’S!
If this was God’s law, how is it that in 1974 (see Watchtower of 15/11/1974) the Society had a completely different position: “Par. 21 Each family must also decide to what extent it will attend those of its members (other than minor children) who are disfellowshipped and who do not live under its roof. It is not for the elders to decide this for the family.
“Par. 22 …..These are humane decisions for families to make, and congregational elders are not required to intervene as long as there is no clear evidence that a corrupting influence has again been introduced into the congregation” (see full texts in w74 11/15).
In 1974, it was WHO’s law?
Yet, in 1974, we were asked to subscribe to this course of action as food from GOD.
In 2017: change of position (I won’t elaborate) – Whose Law? Still JEHOVAH’s?
So in just a few years, JEHOVAH changed his mind?
So, we “ingested tainted food” from JEHOVAH in 1974? Impossible.
I think I can reasonably conclude that it was or is the LAW OF MEN and not that of GOD.
To return to circumcision (the basis of the original discussion) JEHOVAH never changed the day of circumcision (8th day always). JEHOVAH doesn’t change.
We must not say that we must obey MAN without understanding! It’s GOD who must be obeyed without having to understand!
Personally, I am far from fully understanding the reasons why evil is permitted (despite the few elements we have in the Bible); if I have a child next to me who is starving or perishing under the blows of a war he doesn’t understand, it will be difficult for me to “understand”. Yet this doesn’t disturb my faith or my love for Jehovah, because I know that HE is just and has his own good reasons that I don’t know about. What do I know about GOD’s Universe? How can I understand it all? I am nothing; I understand nothing.
But don’t worry, this is the domain of our Great God!
And again, in his goodness our Heavenly Father never reproached men who sought to understand or asked for proof (Abraham, Asaph, Gideon with the fleece…etc.); on the contrary, he answered them.
In Proverbs or in Paul’s letters, the Bible praises discernment, common sense, reason, the ability to think… (see today’s text Col 1: 9/10 Paul prays that the brothers will be “filled with accurate knowledge and spiritual understanding to walk in a manner worthy of Jehovah“. Paul never prayed that the brothers would obey without understanding…
Human beings are imperfect and are therefore bound to change (myself included, of course), but they often risk having to do so when they go “beyond what is written” (I Cor. 4:6).
It doesn’t bother me that men make mistakes, that’s what we all do. What bothers me is to pass off human interpretations as GOD’S LAW and impose them on millions of people.
The Organization said (still w74 11/15) “by sticking to the Scriptures, i.e. by not minimizing what they say and by not making them say what they don’t say, we’ll be able to keep a balanced point of view on the disfellowshipped”.
Yes, I completely agree with this point of view. The Bible says nothing about disfellowshipped ones in the family. We have to use our humanity, our common sense, our sense of justice and our knowledge of divine principles.
F, a few months ago you said from the lectern: “some brothers and sisters don’t understand what the word refining means” (I felt targeted, rightly or wrongly, although I think I know the meaning of the word refining).
So you’ve given the example of the meaning of the “divine name”, a meaning that is now more precise but hasn’t fundamentally changed its meaning. I couldn’t agree more: a fine example of refinement.
But that’s not at all what my doubts about refining are about.
To make myself clearer, I’ll give a few examples:
1914: the anointed ones await their ascent to heaven (it didn’t happen – refining or error?)
1925: end of the 6,000 years – expectation of the resurrection of the great patriarchs Noah, Abraham… (it didn’t happen – refinement or error?).
1975: At the end of 6,000 years again – Christ’s millennial reign has still not begun – refinement or error?
Types/antitypes : I won’t quote them… I’ll just remind you that entire studies have been carried out on these types/antitypes (explanations that left me “perplexed” but I “kept quiet”). Today, we’re dropping all these interpretations – refinement or errors?
“Generation”: in 47 years of baptism, I think I’ve heard at least 4 interpretations (men aged 20 in 1914, then age lowered to 10, then birth in 1914 (at a pinch, we can talk about refining), then it was the “wicked generation” without a precise date, then the 2 classes of contemporary anointed ones… what relationship (or what refining) between the “wicked generation” and the “anointed ones”? (I don’t agree with the last explanation either, which seems so convoluted as to absolutely allow us to put off the generation deadline, that I feel incapable of explaining it to anyone in the territory).
Faithful and discreet slave: change of identification from all the anointed ones to just eight brothers in the world. A very important point all the same, since it was a question of identifying GOD’s channel. Refining or error?
This list is far from exhaustive…
Concerning unfulfilled predictions, I wonder when I read Deut. 18:21 – “And if you say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word that Jehovah has not spoken? When the prophet speaks in Jehovah’s name and the word doesn’t come or doesn’t come true, that’s the word Jehovah didn’t speak. The prophet said it out of presumption. You must not be afraid of him.
You and anyone else are free to consider this to be refining. For me, these were human ERRORS and these men did not speak in the name of GOD.
We’ve been asked to believe these “truths” as teachings from GOD.
They turned out to be false. How could we still think that this was food from JEHOVAH?
This is a far cry from what Paul says in Galatians 1:11 – “I make known to you, brethren, that the good news which was preached by me as good news is not a human invention, for I neither received it from man nor was I taught it, except through a revelation from Jesus Christ.”
If we had stuck, like Paul did, to what the Scriptures said, we wouldn’t have been taught lies and asked to believe them as truths from GOD!
Since the Governing Body admits that it is not “inspired by GOD”, why are we being asked to follow them blindly without understanding?
YES, JEHOVAH CAN BE FOLLOWED (by scrupulously following his Word), NOT MEN!
The head of the congregation is not the men, but CHRIST. We all have Christ’s word in the Bible, and it’s not forbidden to “verify all things” (Pr. 14:15 “Whoever is inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd man watches his steps”).
For the record, let me remind you of Paul’s words:
Galatians 1:8 “However, even if we or an angel from heaven were to announce to you as good news something that goes beyond what we have announced to you as good news let it be cursed” then in verse 9 he insists “As we said above, so I say again…”
I respect the spiritual work of the men of the Governing Body, just as I respect yours, a work I’m grateful for and happy to benefit from. I only ask for the right to consider the members of the Governing Body as benevolent shepherds as long as they teach me the Word of Christ and not as the head of the congregation or judges of my Christian conscience.
I believe in your faith, your love, your self-sacrifice, your sincerity, and I’m aware of all the work you do, and I repeat, I’m grateful to you.
Thank you for believing in my good Christian feelings.
“May Christ enlighten our hearts”
P.S.: Perhaps after this letter you’ll want to meet me. For the reasons given at the beginning of this letter, I prefer to wait until I’m calm and serene again. I saw G on Wednesday January 10.
======== END OF FIRST LETTER ========
The “invitation” to meet with the elders is “good speak,” to borrow a term from 1984 by George Orwell. If one declines the invitation to a judicial committee, the elders on the committee will pass judgment in the absence of the accused. Nicole was subsequently disfellowshipped. In response to this decision by the judicial committee, she wrote the following letter to them.
======== SECOND LETTER ========
The Body of Elders from ESSAC MONTEIL
Subject: My Disfellowshipping,
I would like to come back to you following my disfellowshipping.
Why now? Because it took me not just 7 days (time limit for appeal) but around 7 months to get my head above water.
The purpose of my letter is to find out the precise reason for my disfellowshipping, (which was not communicated to me) when your decision was announced. On the telephone, Mr. AG told me: “The Committee has decided on your disfellowshipping; you have 7 days to appeal; but the door is not closed to you”. I replied: “OK”.
You may rightly say: “But you didn’t go to the to the judicial committee”.
That’s right. My condition wouldn’t allow it; when you told me about the judicial committee, all my strength left me (literally) and I started shaking. For 1 hour, I had to sit there speechless, completely dazed. Shock and amazement overwhelmed me. My emotional and nervous state (already fragile under normal circumstances and exacerbated by the death of my sister-in-law) made it impossible for me to be present; that’s why I didn’t show up. I know you’re not doctors or psychologists, but some of you are aware of my fragility. If you don’t understand me, at least please, believe me.
However, when a defendant is tried in his absence, a record of the hearing along with the conclusions is communicated to him. Paul himself asked the nature of the charges against him (Acts 25:11). For cases of biblical disfellowshipping, the Bible reveals the nature of the sins leading to this punishment.
I therefore believe I am legitimately asking you from both a secular and biblical point of view precisely the reason for my disfellowshipping (legal right over my personal data). I would be grateful if you could answer the following questions in writing (a photocopy of my file would be appreciated).
1 – Reason for my disfellowshipping in my file.
2 – Biblical foundation on which you have based your arguments.
3 – precise proof of your claims: words, deeds and actions that contradict the Bible, which is the (only) supreme authority for Christians, and justify your decision.
I don’t suppose you’ll insult me by ascribing 1 Cor 5:11 to me: “But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.”
For the record, what does the Bible say on the subject of disfellowshipping?
2 John 9:10: “Anyone who does not remain in Christ’s teaching and goes beyond it is not in union with God…If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, nor greet him.”
Rom 16:17 “Now I encourage you, brothers, to keep an eye out for those who create divisions and stumbling situations, things contrary to the teaching you have learned, and avoid them.”
Gal 1:8 “However, even if one of us or an angel from heaven should bring you good news that goes beyond the good news we have brought you, let him be accursed”.
Titus 3:10 ” Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them.”
On these biblical grounds (but perhaps you have others), please tell me very precisely:
- What doctrines have I taught others that go against the teaching of Christ? I say go against the teaching of Christ, that’s what Paul is talking about, not in relation to changing human interpretations (I’m 64; I can prove that I’ve been taught “truths” that have not been refined but have completely changed (generation, 1914, 1925, 1975) or been abandoned (types/antitypes….see my first letter) to millions of people!
- What divisions have I created; what division have I started? (If that’s what you’re accusing me of, I’ve received no warning (Titus 3:10).
I reiterate that I agree with 100% of what is written in the Bible; on the other hand, I do not adhere to 100% of the Watch Tower Society’s teaching, which sometimes has no biblical basis (I don’t know the percentage); but I don’t TEACH ANYONE what I don’t believe.
I’ve only sometimes shared the results of my personal study with brothers and sisters. I think there are 5 of them; of these 5, 4 have confessed to me that they too have doubts. For some of them, it was they who started talking about their doubts. We touched on very few subjects.
The sister I talked to the most came to my house. I’d warned her beforehand that what I had to say wasn’t always in line with the Organization’s views, and that I’d understand very well if she decided not to come. She hasn’t been deceived. She decided to come. I didn’t lock the door behind her. She could have left at any time, which she didn’t; quite the contrary. I didn’t IMPOSE MY POINT OF VIEW on her. She also has doubts about certain teachings (144,000).
Without wishing to create division, isn’t it in the nature of a Christian to speak frankly, without hypocrisy, (plainly) and with truth about what he discovers while studying the Bible? I’ve always respected my brothers’ faith, which is why I’ve always measured my words with them and often held back. It’s only with the elders that I’ve tackled many subjects.
Paul says in Phil 3:15: “If you have a different opinion on any point, God will enlighten you about the way of thinking in question.”
Paul isn’t speaking about disfellowshipping that person; on the contrary, he’s saying that God will enlighten him, and he really does.
Indeed, contrary to what I was told during my last meeting with the elders: “You rely on your own intelligence, the Governing Body relies on God”, quoting Pro. 3:5. This is FALSE!
This verse indicates that we must not SOLELY rely on our intelligence to understand God’s law. Yes, you also have to ask for the spirit of Jah, which I’ve always done. Even if I hadn’t, is that grounds for disfellowshipping?
Jesus assured us that if we ask for his spirit, God would give it to us, Luke 11:11, 12 “…. how much more will the Father in heaven give holy spirit to those who ask him!“. This verse doesn’t just apply to the Governing Body!
Just read the context Proverbs 2:3 “If you call for understanding…then you will understand…” Prov 3: 21 “preserve practical wisdom and the ability to think…” etc. The verses in Proverbs and Paul’s letters are full of encouragement to seek intelligence, discernment, common sense, discerning faculties, reflection, spiritual understanding… Does Acts 17:17 “the Bereans carefully examined the scriptures every day to check that what they were told was correct” then only apply to the Governing Body?
The Governing Body itself says the opposite:
Watchtower July 2017: …a basic understanding of truth is not enough… As author Noam Chomsky pointed out “no one is going to pour the truth into our minds. It’s up to us to find it for ourselves”. So, find it for yourself by examining the Scriptures every day” (Acts 17:11) Remember that Satan doesn’t want you to think objectively or analyze things well. Why not? Because propaganda “is more likely to work, we read, “if people are discouraged from thinking critically“. So never be content to passively and blindly accept everything you hear (Prov 14:15). Use your God-given ability to think to strengthen your faith (Prov 2:10-15; Rom 12:1,2).
Yes, God created our brain for us to use it. That doesn’t mean we don’t rely on our Heavenly Father to understand!!!!
I would like to thank you in advance for your clear and precise reply to the questions in this letter, on the understanding (keeping in mind) that during our discussions (I was not quoted any Bible verse) (not a single Bible verse was used) denouncing serious misconduct on my part.
I assure you, my goal is not to polemicize, even if I don’t agree with your answer; far be it from me to plunge back into that nightmare! I know it won’t lead anywhere.
To turn the page and regain my balance, I need to know what serious sin I’ve committed. You’ve kindly told me that the door isn’t closed, but I still need to know what I need to repent of.
Thank you in advance for your concern.
For my part, I remain faithful to my God and Father, to his Word and to his Son; as such, I send my fraternal greetings to those who wish to receive them.
Copies: To the brothers still in the Pessac congregation who took part in our discussions and in the Judicial committee.
(To the) Bethel of France –
(To the) Jehovah’s Witnesses in Warwick
======== END OF SECOND LETTER ========
The elders did respond to Nicole to explain why they believed she was a divisive apostate needing to be disfellowshipped. Here is her response to their reasoning.
======== THIRD LETTER ========
To all the members of the Body of Elders,
And to all those who want to read it…
(Perhaps some people won’t want to read all the way through – for the sake of transparency, I invite them to do so as I’m quoting certain people by name — but it’s up to each person to decide)
Thank you for finally responding to my request.
You quote Titus 3:10, 11 (Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them. You may be sure that such people are warped and sinful; they are self-condemned)
I haven’t CREATED any DISSIDENT CURRENTS. If I had, where would my followers be?
I read Peter this morning, from which today’s text is taken. He declares that those who create these sects “deny their owner…because of what they do, others will speak evil of the way of the truth…they exploit you with deceitful words”.
I have never denied CHRIST, no one has spoken ill of the path of truth because of my “shameful and shameless conduct.” I have exploited no one with deceitful words.
I’m sorry if I offended some of the brothers, but I must have been a little short-sighted; my aim was never to offend anyone. I apologize to them. However, it would have been scriptural if they had told me to my face. But that’s all right.
(At the same time, just before I had my last interview with DF and GK, a brother told me that I was a fine example in the congregation and that he wasn’t the only one to think so. A week earlier, a sister had told me more or less the same thing.
But it seems that I WAS REPEATING MY IDEAS AND WAS A BAD EXAMPLE FOR THE CONGREGATION.
It is indeed difficult for me to remain silent about what I read in the Bible. I love the Bible. We always want to talk about what we love. I remind you that every week we’re asked:
“What other spiritual gems did you find in this week’s Bible reading”?
Why ask this question if you’re being punished for talking about what you’ve found? It would be more honest to say: “What other spiritual gems have you found in your reading of the publications?
In this case, we would understand that we shouldn’t talk about truths found in our Bible reading that don’t go along with what the “Society” says, but only about those found in publications.
I certainly don’t think I’m smarter than others, but I believe in the words of Christ who said:
Luke 11:11-13 …how much more will the Father in heaven give holy spirit to those who are asking him!”
Mark 11: 24 “whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it, and you will”.
Eph 1:16 “I continue to make mention of you in my prayers that …God may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the exact knowledge of his person, the eyes of your heart having been enlightened.”
Heb 13:15 “…let us offer a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of our lips making a public declaration for his name.”
Am I an apostate because I believe in the words of Christ and Paul who promised me that I could have the spirit of our heavenly Father? Were Jesus and Paul talking only about 8 men in the world?
Let me remind you of Acts 17:11:
“The Jews of Berea had nobler feelings than those of Thessalonica, for they received the word with the greatest eagerness, carefully examining the Scriptures to VERIFY THAT WHAT THEY WERE TOLD WAS ACCURATE.”
But who had announced the Word to them? The apostle Paul, who had received visions from his Lord Christ. To the best of our knowledge, the Governing Body has not. And yet, Paul considered the Bereans to have noble sentiments.
I’d like to quickly remind you that in 50 years of worshiping God, I haven’t had many complaints. More than 20 years ago, I already had my doubts about 1914 and the generation explanation. I asked two elders to come and see me. (At the time, they didn’t see fit to shun me).
Just to say that in all these years (which was also the reason I left 10 years ago, but you didn’t know about it), I don’t think I’ve SPREAD my ideas. I challenge you to name one personal thought I’ve expressed to the congregation in these 50 years!
The Bible tells us:
1 Thess 5: 21 “Check all things: hold fast that which is excellent”
2 Peter 3: 1 “to stimulate your wholesome thinking and refresh your memory”
The “Society” says:
When we obey “even if we do not fully understand a decision or do not fully agree with it, we want to support the Theocratic Authority” (w17 June p. 30)
… “we have a sacred duty to follow the direction of the Faithful and Wise Slave and his Governing Body and to support their decisions”. (w07 4/1/ p. 24)
“Even today, the Governing Body…. The spiritual food they contain is based on the Word of God. What is taught therefore comes from Jehovah, and not from men” (w10 9/15 p. 13)
“Jesus leads the congregation through the Faithful and Wise Slave, he too echoes the voice of Jehovah“ (w14 8/15 p. 21)
(There are a plethora of identical quotes which you often cite from the platform)
Note that the organization is put on the same level as the Word of God, that it is the echo of Jehovah’s voice, that what is taught comes from Jehovah!
So, when Rutherford had millions of people preach, with the help of the pamphlet “Millions Now Living Will Never Die” this food came from Jehovah.
The main thing to be restored to the human race is life: and since other passages show positively that Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the other faithful of ancient times will rise again and be the first to be favored, we can expect that 1925 will see the return from the dead condition of these faithful men then resurrected and fully restored to the perfect human position, and as visible and legal representatives of the new order of things here below. The Kingdom of the Messiah established, Jesus and his glorified Church constituting the great Messiah, will dispense to the world the blessings so long desired, so long hoped and prayed for. When that time comes, there will be peace and no more war, as the prophet says” (p. 75)
“As we have just shown, the great jubilee cycle must begin in 1925. It is on this date that the earthly phase of the kingdom will be recognized […] Therefore, we can confidently expect that 1925 will mark the return to the condition of human perfection of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the ancient prophets”. (p. 76)
With the argument previously given that the old order of things, the old world is ending and passing away, that the new order of things is taking hold and that 1925 is to see the resurrection of the faithful dignitaries of ancient times as well as the beginning of the reconstruction, it is reasonable to conclude that millions of people currently on earth will still be there in 1925 And based on the data of the divine word, we must say in a positive and irrefutable way that millions of people currently living will never die”. (p. 83)
(By the way, do all future baptized know about these and other episodes? I didn’t know them myself).
WERE ALL THOSE WHO MADE FALSE PREDICTIONS CALLED APOSTATES? After all, we’re talking about the Presidents of Jehovah’s Witnesses (RUTHERFORD – RUSSELL see heading 1914).
Yet Deut. 18:22 says “if the prophet speaks in the name of Jehovah and the word is not fulfilled, if it remains without effect, it is because Jehovah did not speak that word. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You must not be afraid of him.
Jeremiah 23 (10-40) “They abuse their power…Do not listen to what the prophets tell you who make predictions. They deceive you. The vision they tell you is the product of their imagination; it does not come from the mouth of Jehovah…”
Who were they who announced false predictions? They were prophets and priests who were supposed to teach God’s will.
Who can claim today that the “Society” hasn’t made false predictions (1925 – 1975… I won’t go into too much detail; I’ve already spoken about this in a previous post) and gone beyond what is written? I’m not going to list all the false teachings that have been presented to us as being the Truth, because it never ends, but all the same, predicting the resurrection for a precise date and saying that this date corresponds to GOD’s intervention, that’s no mean feat!
WHY DON’T YOU APPLY 2 JOHN 7 – 10?
“Anyone who does not remain within Christ’s teaching and goes beyond it is not in union with God…”
Didn’t the Governing Body go beyond what was written?
For my part, what predictions have I made?????????
Yet, I’m the apostate!!!!!!!!!!
You speak about a refining:
Why is it that when it comes to the meaning of Rom 13:1 about submission to higher authorities, first it was said to be human authorities (under Russell) and then “a great light illuminated them. It showed that Jehovah and Christ are the ‘higher authorities’ and not the rulers of this world.” They call the previous interpretation “a vicious interpretation of Scripture“. (Quote from the book “Truth will set you free” p 286 and 287)
Then we changed it back to human authorities.
So, God guided them to something right, then to something wrong, then back to something right. How dare they! How can I not be SHOCKED too! How can I believe that the Governing Body doesn’t produce human interpretations. We have the proof right in front of us.
It should be remembered that for some 80 years, they were mistaken IN THEIR OWN IDENTIFICATION! The Slave was the 144,000, today it’s the Governing Body, i.e. 8 men in the world.
What revelation did they have to know that henceforth JEHOVAH would use Mr. COOK as a member of God’s channel? Don’t we have the right to know the evidence that Jehovah chose him specially out of all Christians?
When Moses was sent to the Israelites, he said to God: “But suppose they don’t believe me and don’t listen to me, because they’ll say, “Jehovah didn’t appear to you.” What does Jehovah say to him? “It’s none of their business! They’re apostates! They have to believe you blindly!”
No, obviously he found this reasoning logical, since He gave him 3 signs, miracles, “so that they would believe that Jehovah…had appeared to you”. Later, with breathtaking miracles, God showed that He had chosen Moses. So there can be no doubt.
So, am I an apostate because I ask for proof and couldn’t see it with my own eyes?
What’s more, I’m SHOCKED because:
The Society is double-tongued. On the one hand, we have the above quotations on the role of the Faithful and Discreet Slave; but and on the other hand, Mr. JACKSON, a member of the Governing Body, answers during the Inquiry by the Royal Commission of Australia this way:
(from the official, non-apostate website: https://www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au/case-study-29-jehovahs-witnesses):
Steward: “Do you consider yourselves Jehovah God’s spokesmen on earth?”
Jackson: “I think it would be rather presumptuous to think that we are the only spokesmen that God uses.”
(write to the Society to verify if these words are accurate…) Was he honest in his answer when we read the publications and hear from the Service Desk the very opposite of what he said?
(On the mishandling of child abuse cases, why aren’t we informed? You know very well that, in the absence of 2 witnesses, no justice was done for the victims. (Br. C told me about a similar case, which I didn’t tell anyone about because I was so ashamed of it.) Do you really think that Jesus would have applied this law? What about the law that speaks of a woman who is a victim of rape, with no witnesses, but who cries out? The aggressor is liable to death. In addition, sexual abuse is a crime, so why not report these crimes to the authorities? Do we need a secular mandate to do that? Our Christian conscience is not enough? In fact, the reputation of the congregation and the name of Jehovah should not be sullied. Now he is sullied!!! With whose funds will you pay for the lawsuits in which the Watch Tower Society has been condemned? Human justice must put its finger on it for the Governing Body to finally say clearly that they must be denounced. They know better than all, how is it that they had not given these instructions before?)
He also said to a question from the judge about apostates:
“An apostate is someone who actively goes against what the Bible teaches.”
Why didn’t he add “anyone who does not adhere to what the Governing Body teaches”?
I am SHOCKED by :
Copy/pasted from the JW.ORG website to the reader’s question: Do Jehovah’s Witnesses reject ex-Witnesses?
“What happens when a man is disfellowshipped but his wife and children remain Witnesses? Their religious practice is affected, it’s true; but blood ties and marital bonds continue. They continue to lead a normal family life and to show affection for each other.
WHO CAN TELL ME EYE-TO-EYE THAT THIS ASSERTION IS TRUE? In view of these 3 statements,
Perhaps we should remember that telling the truth is:
“Tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
Everyone has seen the video showing a mother not even answering her daughter’s phone. Was she ill? Was she in danger? What does it matter, right? There’s no shortage of articles declaring that we don’t even have to send or reply to a text message (except in an emergency – but how will
we know it’s an emergency?).
Jesus said: “But you say, ‘A man can say to his father or mother, ‘Everything I have that could be of use to you is corban (i.e. a promised offering to God)’. In this way, you no longer let him do anything for his father or mother. In this way, you nullify God’s word because of your tradition, which you pass on to others. And you do many such things. Mark 7: 11-13
When Jesus said, “It is therefore permissible to do a good deed on the Sabbath,” wasn’t he showing that there is no limit to doing a good deed?
One day, a sister in our congregation said to me (speaking of her husband who had been disfellowshipped but who was attending services again): “What’s hard is to attend an assembly and not be able to talk about it with your husband, we each study on our own side of the table without communicating about spiritual things”. (I didn’t say anything, but yes, I WAS SHOCKED!
Really, I couldn’t imagine Jesus saying to this couple: “You’ve come to listen to me, that’s good, but please don’t talk amongst yourselves about what I’ve taught you”.
And I MUST NOT BE SHOCKED BY THE DIRECTIVES OF THE GOVERNING BODY CONTRARY TO THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST?
Can’t I have a conscience educated by the Word of God that reacts rightly? I’m not forcing you to think like me; I’m just asking that my conscience be respected.
(In this area, do a survey to find out what the brothers think privately. When the video came out showing the mother not answering her daughter’s call, sisters at a preaching cart were discussing it. They were trying to find extenuating circumstances that perhaps the Society hadn’t mentioned. They said: “Maybe it was the third time or more that she called…” all in an attempt to minimize this message that in fact they didn’t understand. In the circumstances, I listened but said nothing…
In the book Revelation: it says: “we do not claim that the explanations given in this publication are infallible”.
In that case, why do we excommunicate people who have doubts because they don’t see any biblical support for an interpretation (e.g., the fourth or fifth interpretation of the “generation”. I know for a fact that I’m not the only one who doubts this explanation. If we were to ask the brothers what they think of it, and this of course under cover of anonymity, without any risk and because the Governing Body would like to have our opinion, how many would find this explanation biblical)? 20 years ago, I wrote to the Society about the generation. They replied with a completely different explanation than today. And you want me to trust them?
Everyone makes mistakes – no problem. But why does the Governing Body put itself on the human level by invoking imperfection when it gets it wrong, and also put itself on the same level as Christ by demanding absolute obedience because it is chosen by God as a channel?
What is serious is to impose a point of view and claim that they speak in the name of Jehovah, that they are the echo of Jehovah’s voice. This means that Jehovah has fed his people errors!!!! What’s more, it means that Jehovah is changing his Word!
Am I the one who SHOCKS others when I tell these TRUTHS? And I don’t have the RIGHT TO BE SHOCKED?
Before turning to the other purely biblical points, I would like to point out:
– that it was when I read my card that I learned that I had been noted and that I had received warnings.
I had taken good note of the speeches on apostasy and understood that you were targeting me (but I never felt concerned by apostasy); which brother gave me warnings directly and what were these warnings?
First Meeting: one of the brothers said to me (the brothers will recognize who they were) “this conversation has inspired me to read the Bible more deeply” – NO WARNINGS
Second Meeting: “it’s not often we have such deep conversations, I hope we’ll have more – NO WARNINGS
Third Meeting: (with the district overseer): “what you’re saying is very interesting” – NO WARNING – when he left the assembly, he kissed me goodbye (if I’d been graded, I don’t think he would have done it).
Fourth Meeting: the most depressing discussion I’ve ever had! NO WARNING and especially NO ENCOURAGEMENT
Fifth and last Meeting: yes, Mr. F brings up the idea of APOSTASY by saying that I had spoken to brothers (so few). I expressed myself on this at the beginning of the letter. I understand what he’s getting at, so I leave, having finally really understood that my fate is sealed.
I didn’t get the warnings beforehand, but that’s really not important, it doesn’t change my position.
When RD said that those who came to the meetings shouldn’t think that they were being blessed by God, I went to see him, feeling targeted; he assured me that I wasn’t, that I wasn’t the only one in the congregation… Ok
Later, I was to be the householder for a sister at a meeting. Just before the meeting RD went to see this sister and asked her to choose someone else. RD had greeted me at the meeting, so couldn’t he have had the courtesy to inform me? I found myself searching in vain for this sister, and understanding nothing? At least 2 sisters (in addition to the 2 sisters who actually presented the subject, not to mention the husbands…) knew that I had to take part in the meeting, they came to see me to ask what had happened, I didn’t reply. So had he already judged me enough not to show even a modicum of consideration?
Not understanding anything, the next day in preaching, I spoke to BA asking him if I was under restriction. He himself was surprised by this attitude and told me he didn’t know anything about it, that in any case, in such cases, you inform the person. He was supposed to approach the brothers that evening and let me know. He never came back to tell me anything. (I don’t blame him).
Faced with this silence, I went to see RD to express my astonishment. He told me that the brothers had informed him that I didn’t want to do any more talks! which is completely untrue: would I have been surprised and shocked if that were the case?
It turns out that you had made this decision without bothering to inform me. I had already become a negligible quantity. In fact, I now understand that I was marked.
But that’s all just details, isn’t it?
During our talks, which biblical texts did the brothers oppose to “my reasoning”? NONE
Concerning the memorial Christ told us:
“This represents my body, which will be given up for you. Continue to do this in remembrance of me” “this cup represents the new covenant, validated by my blood, which will be poured out for you“. Luke 22:19/20
Was Christ’s blood shed only for the 144,000?
So how can the rest of us be redeemed?
1 Cor 10:16 “Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a participation in the blood of Christ? Is not the bread which we break a participation in the body of Christ? Since there is ONE BREAD, WE, WHILE WE ARE MANY, are one body, for WE ALL HAVE PART IN THIS ONE BREAD”.
(there’s never any mention of a small restrictive class having a share in the bread and another just benefiting without having a share – pure human speculation – the Bible never says that! just read and accept what it says).
John 6: 37 – 54 “ALL THAT THE FATHER GIVES ME will come to me, and I will never cast out anyone who comes to me…EVERY MAN who recognizes the Son and exercises faith in him will have eternal life…I am the living bread. If ANYONE eats this bread, he will live forever; and truly, the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world. …Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in yourselves”.
(We’re told that he wasn’t talking about the Last Supper, on the pretext that it was before it took place; right, because Jesus never talked about events before they happened? He says this bread is his flesh. But what is the bread of the Last Supper?)
Why look for complications when Christ’s words need no interpretation? Isn’t it because we absolutely want to make them fit with what we’re saying, so we add speculations?
I continue to do what Christ asked of us, considering that he shed his blood for me too, BUT I AM AN APOSTATE!
Then Jesus, just before ascending into heaven, said to his disciples,
“Go ye therefore… teaching them to practice ALL THAT I HAVE COMMANDED YOU.”
Maybe Jesus forgot to tell them: be careful, I didn’t tell you, but not everyone will drink from my cup, but you’ll understand that in 1935! A man will come and add to my words (RUTHERFORD).
For the theme of the memorial, DF used a comparison to make his point: “For the November 11th memorial, for example, there are those in the field who take part and those who watch on television… (who watch but don’t take part) Super biblical reasoning! In the
same secular vein, I could give another example: “When you invite friends to a meal, do you ever tell them you’re inviting them, but some of them will eat, while others will only be there to watch those who are eating. They’ll be passed the dishes, but they won’t participate. But it’s very important that they come anyway!
I’d like to add that I had formally said after my first meeting and in my initial letter that I didn’t want to talk about it anymore – DF insisted heavily, telling me that he himself had wondered about it only a short time ago – I insisted, saying that I’d accept this meeting if they came to encourage me. It was the most depressing meeting I’ve ever had. In fact, I was so discouraged that I didn’t even come to the service meeting that evening.
But that’s to be expected, since the 2 brothers didn’t even say a prayer at the start of the meeting! Just before leaving, DF asked me if he could say a prayer, to which I replied that I would have preferred it to be said at the start of the meeting…
I could add many more verses, but I’ll try to keep it short.
The 144,000: a literal number?
How do you solve the operation: how much is 12 times 12,000?
12 is not literal
12,000 is not literal
The Tribes from which the 12,000 are drawn are not literal
Well, yes, miraculously, the RESULT IS LITERAL!
In the same chapter, the 4 living creatures are symbolic, the 24 elders are symbolic, but the 144,000 are literal! that’s in the preceding verses (the 24 elders symbolize a literal number… strange… it’s usually the other way around).
By the way, the 144,000 sing before the 24 elders (the 24 elders are the 144,000 according to the Society, so they sing before themselves). See the explanation and remember that verse 1 does indeed speak of the 144,000 who are all in heaven, with the Lamb on Mount Zion (I leave it to you to review the explanation in the publications and see who’s speculating).
Genesis 22:16: “This seed will be like the stars of the heavens and like the grains of sand…” does not imply a definite number, very easy to count.
From a purely mathematical point of view, how can we believe that this number has not yet been reached, when there were thousands of them in the first centuries, just as many in the 20th century, and in the meantime, for 19 centuries, the wheat grew (the 144,000) amidst the weeds? Have we forgotten all those Christians who rose up against the Church and the Papacy, risking their lives to spread or translate the Bible? And what about all the unknown Christians of the past 19 centuries? After all, they weren’t all weeds! The great crowd didn’t exist. But who were they?
You be the judge of who speculates the most.
I say I am CHRISTIAN
Acts 11:26 “It was at Antioch that, by DIVINE PROVIDENCE, the disciples were called ‘CHRISTIANS’ for the first time”.
Acts 26:28 “In a short time you would persuade me to become a CHRISTIAN.”
1 Peter 4:16 “If anyone suffers as a CHRISTIAN, let him not be ashamed, but let him continue to glorify God by BEARING THIS NAME.”
You can quote me:
Isaiah 43:10 “You are my witnesses”.
Was Israel, who was to be his witnesses, called Jehovah’s witnesses? Verse 1: This is what Jehovah, your Creator, says, O Jacob, he who formed you O Israel: do not be afraid, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name. You belong to me.
Yes, we have this role, to be witnesses. This mission, which I accept, does not mean that we must literally bear the name Jehovah’s Witness. Israel has never been called Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Acts 15:14 “God dealt with the nations to draw out of them a people for his name.”
Peter applies it to his own time. The first Christians never called themselves Jehovah’s Witnesses, but Christians.
As for Jesus, the faithful and true Witness par excellence, who came in the name of his Father, he never called himself a Jehovah’s Witness. When I say that I come in the name of a person, that doesn’t mean that I’m literally going to carry his name, I’m speaking in his name; I’m going to report his ideas.
Being a WITNESS is a MISSION I fully accept.
Acts 1:8: “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem…”. Math 24: 14 etc.
The name Jehovah’s Witness as an organization is the initiative of one man, RUTHERFORD, but does not come from DIVINE PROVIDENCE, it is CHRISTIAN which comes from DIVINE PROVIDENCE.
Who do you think said:
“…whatever name men give us, it is of no importance to us; we recognize no other name than “the only name that has been given under heaven among men” – Jesus Christ. We simply give ourselves the name CHRISTIANS and we erect no barrier that would separate us from anyone who believes in the foundation stone of our building of which Paul speaks “That Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures”; and those to whom this is not enough are not worthy to bear the name of Christian.” see T of G 03/1883 – 02/1884 and 15/9 1885 (English) (if you don’t have these publications, write to the Society to find out if it’s true)
I’M AN APOSTATE, SO RUSSELL IS AN APOSTATE, TOO.
(Again, it’s amazing that Jehovah guided Russell in one direction and Rutherford in another…)
His hope, all go to heaven
- – Please strike that statement from my card – it’s simply FALSE. I know best what I believe in.
I believe that God’s original plan will come true and that the earth will become a paradise where human beings will live. I remind you that I believe 100% what the Bible says (Rev 21:4)!
GOD will choose where we go if we deserve it. Jesus said, “In my Father’s house are many dwelling places…”.
I won’t go into too much detail as it would take too long.
On the understanding that all human calculations have proved to be wrong:
- Russel’s “The Time is Near” 1889 98/99:
…It is true that it is expecting great things to believe, as we do, that the next 26 years all present governments will be overthrown and dissolved.”
- We consider it a well-established truth that the END OF THE KINGDOMS OF THIS WORLD and the full establishment of the Kingdom of God will take place in 1914“.
- So let’s not be surprised that in the chapters that follow, we present EVIDENCE that the establishment of the Kingdom of God HAS ALREADY BEGUN: that according to prophecy it was to begin exercising its power in 1878 and that the battle of Almighty God’s great day, which will end in 1914 with the complete overthrow of the present earthly governments, has already begun” etc. etc.
None of what was announced for 1914 came to pass; I’ll pass quickly over the fact that they all expected to be lifted into heaven, since they thought this would coincide with God’s intervention.
You call me an apostate because I have very strong doubts about the date 1914. You are wrong about all the dates concerning earthly events, so how can you be sure of what happened in heaven?
Human calculations are only human calculations.
I CAN’T BE CALLED AN APOSTATE FOR DOUBTING 1914, IT’S NOT WRITTEN IN THE BIBLE, IT’S THE RESULT OF HUMAN CALCULATION.
Rejection by the Governing Body
I don’t reject any Christian as a brother who teaches me the Word of God, and I’m willing to imitate his faith if he respects Christ’s teaching. I say, or at least I transcribe Col 1:18 Speaking of the Word, “he is the head of the Body, the assembly”. CHRIST IS THEREFORE THE ONLY HEAD.
John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. So, the Governing Body, the channel or path, has replaced Christ?
As for us, whoever we are, “we have one Master Christ, and we are all brothers”.
Hebrews 1:1 “At one time God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in many ways. Now, at the end of these days, he has spoken to us through a SON, whom he has appointed heir of all things…”
God didn’t choose to speak through a Governing Body (an expression that doesn’t exist in the Bible, yet we’re not embarrassed to refer to the apostles in the preface to Acts as the Governing Body, a name they never had).
1 Cor 12 “There are different gifts, but there is the same Spirit; there are different ministries and yet there is the same Lord;” And this is how God established the different members in the assembly: firstly apostles, ( the members of the Governing Body are not apostles and there are no successors to the apostles) secondly prophets (were they true prophets?), thirdly teachers (the members of the Governing Body are not the only teachers – do not be yourselves teachers, which I accept)… and Paul goes on to say that he is going to show them an even more extraordinary path. It’s the path of love that surpasses all teaching.
I accept that all true teachers of God’s word are, according to Titus 1:7-9 “Overseers , a leader…who must be just, faithful, able to encourage…”
1 Cor 4: 1, 2 “We are to be regarded as servants of Christ and stewards… Now what is expected of stewards is that they be found faithful…”
Remember that in Luke 12:42 – a verse parallel to Math 24:45, “the slave” is called “steward” – but in general, very little is quoted from Luke 12:42 perhaps because we would realize that the steward “class” applies not to 8 men but to all teachers who are asked to be faithful and wise or of good sense.
I won’t go on too long at the risk of annoying you. Let me summarize: I accept the teachers of God’s law, I’m willing to obey them and imitate their faith as long as they teach me GOD’S LAW.
Otherwise, I choose to “obey God rather than men”, whoever they may be.
You judged my reasoning to be that of an apostate: “Everyone will be judged as he has judged” Ma 7:2
I wish you would have respected :
Rom 14: “Don’t criticize opinions different from your own” “Let everyone be fully convinced of what he thinks”.
“Consider this conviction of yours as a matter between you and God. Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself because of what he approves.
“Yes, everything that is not based on faith is sin.”
1 Cor 10: 30 “If I take my part in giving thanks, why should anyone speak ill of me for what I give thanks for?”
Phil 3:15 “Therefore, let all of us who are mature have this way of thinking, and, if you have a different opinion on any point, God will enlighten you about the way of thinking in question.”
In any case, I think that after decades of silence, I had the right to come to you out of honesty and frankness to expose my doubts. About 10 years ago, I left discreetly for the same reasons. You knew nothing about it. I tried to compose myself, to put a lid on everything that was greatly disturbing me, but it became imperative for me to make my faith clear.
When I did, I thought I wasn’t being judged. FG told me I’d done the right thing; that it was a better reaction than leaving as some brothers do without anyone knowing why. (Now I know why they do it).
I felt very good to have spoken frankly, and sincerely wished to continue walking in the spirit, peace and unity in the faith with my brothers and sisters.
But you decided otherwise.
Have you had to complain about my personal interpretations in my comments at meetings over the years? (Yet I’ve heard some publicly that haven’t been corrected – for example, the wheels in Ezekiel’s vision that went back and forth perhaps symbolized changes in the organization – I couldn’t believe my ears! The spirit and the wheels were changing direction because they were going in the wrong direction! but since the point was to support changes in the Society, who cares if what was being said was WRONG and even ABSURD?)
That day, I went home in tears, begging Jehovah for an answer. I finally dared to ask him if the Governing Body was his channel. Such is the pressure of the group that I couldn’t even formulate this request. The next morning, I came across John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled; exercise faith in God, exercise faith also in me” It’s a lesson I’m holding on to with all my heart.
If I’d been respected, everything would have ended there. I expressly said I didn’t want to talk about it anymore. You forced me to do all these meetings.
I can add that it’s when you understand that you’re forbidden to speak that you speak the most. A witness forbidden to speak? Is that possible?
I could add many other points that shocked me, but does it matter to you?
I know it’s a lost cause: “when you want to kill your dog, you say it has rabies”.
For my part:
I will obey GOD rather than MEN. I’m not part of an ORGANIZATION (a word that doesn’t even exist in the Bible, but whose occurrences are numerous in publications), I’m part of GOD’S PEOPLE. “Everyone who fears him is pleasing to him.
You judged me not according to the BIBLE but according to THE RULES OF AN ORGANIZATION. So, it doesn’t matter to me.
1 Peter 2: 19 “Indeed, when anyone endures hardship and suffers unjustly to keep a good conscience before God, it is something good.”
1 Cor 4:3 “I don’t care whether I’m examined by you or by a human court. Besides, I don’t even examine myself. I think I have nothing to reproach myself for, but that doesn’t prove that I’m righteous. The one who examines me is Jehovah.
I am and will remain a CHRISTIAN and will continue to practice justice, love faithfulness, and walk modestly with my God.
I would like to quote from the Watchtower of May 1, 1974:
“when people are threatened with great danger for a reason they don’t even suspect, or because they are being deceived by people they believe to be friends, is it wrong to warn them? Perhaps they’d rather not believe the person warning them. They may even resent it. But does that absolve him of the moral responsibility of warning them?”
I had planned to send you copies of the books “Thy Kingdom Come”, “The Truth Will Set You Free” and the book “Millions Now Living Will Never Die”. (For me, this is the brochure that made me react the most), but after all, you can get them for yourself.
Of course, this letter expects nothing in return.
Thank you for your understanding
P.S.: I don’t want this letter to be taken against any brother, even those I’ve quoted; my aim is not to hurt, I know you’ve only applied the rules of the Society.
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