Sunday, May 30, 2010

Jehovah's Witnesses in Mexico

This is an addendum to my "Jehovah's Witnesses and the Malawi incidents" blog where I discussed how Mexican JW's were given permission to bribe the government and become members of the 1st reserves of the army,while in Malawi JW's were raped tortured and killed for simply refusing a military card by command of the society.This is a little addition to that.So let's examine something else that went on with the Jehovah's Witnesses in Mexico until recently.(all quotes from "Crisis of Conscience" by Ray Franz)

"As a result of the Mexican Revolution and the Catholic Church's long history of holding immense quantities of land and other property in the country,the Mexican Constitution until recently forbid any religious organization the right to own property."-p.164

Ray goes on to point out that because of this the powers that be(aka an administration in Brooklyn) in the WT corporation decided to present themselves,not as a religious organization but as a "cultural" one instead,which ultimately led to JW's not being able to speak of having religious meetings but rather "cultural" ones.This also led to NO prayers or songs at meetings or assemblies,no bibles in the field service,no congregations but rather "companies,"no baptisms but rather "symbols."This was all done to avoid simply following government regulations of allowing the government to hold custody of church property.Keep in mind JW's fought tooth and nail in the US for the rights to offer their literature everywhere and to use sound cars even though these things weren't done by early Christians,who they CLAIM is their sole inspiration.Needless to say,Christ's disciples didn't require WT literature for salvation or a governing body for truth.

To quote Ray again(certain portions condensed for brevity)
"Congregational and group prayer WAS a primary religious practice in early Christian meetings.The Mexican government said nothing against prayer at religious meetings.JW's,however,were instructed to say that their meetings weren't religious."-p.166

Keep in mind Daniel risked everything to be able to pray to Jehovah.Interesting then that the society deemed something as significantly spiritual as congregational prayer as expedient.By sacrificing prayer and song and using other peculiar and clandestine tactics as mentioned,they were able to retain ownership of their property.Other religions complied with the government and didn't have to resort to such things.

Ray says:

"JW's were willing to say that their organization was not a religious organization,that their meetings were not religious meetings,that their witnessing activity was not religious activity,that baptism was not a religious act-when in every other country of the world JW's were saying just the opposite."-p.166

Proverbs 20:23 Two sorts of weights are something detestable to Jehovah, and a cheating pair of scales is not good.

After half a century of this,the JW's finally changed their status in Mexico to one of a religious organization.The WT magazine described how thrilling this was,bringing "tears of joy."The article in the WT was conspicuously missing what the status had been before,the fact that it was the organization and not the government of Mexico itself that had wanted the previous status all along,that their headquarters organization chose it that way voluntarily.The WT ,as usual, painted a sanitized picture of everything,one that ,to quote Ray,"was as misleading as the pre-1989 practice of pretending to be something other than a religious organization while knowing full well that they were."-p169

Conveniently,they changed their status for pragmatic reasons as opposed to spiritual principles because,you guessed it,under a new constitutional amendment churches were once again allowed to own buildings and property.

Keeping in mind what the Malawians suffered,what the Mexicans were told to do,and how the WT society has behaved dubiously,

Ray words things so beautifully and appropriately:

"It is men in authority who accord THEMSELVES the right to be of divided opinion,but who exact uniformity from all others;men who express mistrust of others' use of Christian freedom of conscience,but who expect such others to put implicit trust in them and their decisions,while they grant to themselves the right to exercise their conscience to condone illegal maneuvering and obvious misrepresentation of fact.I could not personally comprehend how grown men could fail to see inconsistency in all this,could fail to be repelled by it ,could not be deeply moved by its effect on people's lives."Organizational loyalty" can allow people to rationalize away the grossest of inequities,relieving them from being affected by the suffering their policies may cause."-p.167-168

How do you feel as a JW that the WT misrepresented what and who they are just to hold ownership of a property instead of letting the government,essentially rendering prayer,bibles,& baptisms(Christian realities) obsolete for them(at least in an honest manner)?How do you feel about the fact that they could have been a truthful integrity ridden organization,WITH these Christian realities intact the whole time,if only they'd relinquished ownership of the property,essentially making prayer,bibles and baptisms okay in Mexico without all the concocting behavior?Should ownership of property OR the ability to pray,dispense bibles and baptize in an honest as opposed to a clandestine manner be more important to a Christian?How,as a JW,do you feel about the fact that when the WT decided to report all this they hid what the actual reality in Mexico had been and that they VOLUNTARILY gave up what Daniel in the bible would have fought tooth and nail for just to OWN PROPERTY?Would it have killed them to let the government own their property so that they could behave as Christians should,without lying,without hiding,without misrepresenting their entire reality when they didn't HAVE to?

Why do you think the WT did all this?Why do you think the WT glossed over the truth about it all in their literature?And why is any of it okay?How many injustices and fact-glossings and "uninspired" false predictions and hypocrisies will it take to make you question whether or not these men are God's channel of communication?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

John 20:28 for trinitarians(2 possible views!)

1st possible interpretation from Anthony Buzzard:

2nd possible interpretation:(I made this video when I was an Arian so forgive any Arian leanings.I no longer think Jesus pre-existed his human birth.)

Friday, May 21, 2010

What's in a name?(a Jehovah's Witness issue)

All the book quotes in this blog are from "In Search of Christian Freedom" by Raymond Franz.

Blasphemous bearing

Jehovah's Witnesses pride themselves on using God's name all the time.Briefly,let me address why their bearing this name is blasphemous before I get started on anything else.
It isn't the use of the name itself but understanding who the person is that counts..Does Yahweh advocate hypocrisy,false prophecy,mishandling of sheep,ignoring His Son,two separate hopes for Christians,sectarianism,haughtiness,legalism,bloodguilt etc?Because these are some of the horrific fruits of the WT corporation.I can assure you that Yahweh hates hypocrisy with a passion,killed false prophets with no hesitation,warned shepherds who mistreat the flock of impending retribution,admonished that either you listen to his Son or you don't know Him,promoted NONsectarianism,and demands humility and repentance as opposed to failure to admit mistakes and continually making them.He also condemned the Pharisees for legalistic policies and heavy loads and self righteousness.Also,obviously, if anyone was in any way responsible for the death of someone else that one would be punished "eye for an eye."So if a flip flop on blood for hemophiliacs,a flip flop on organs for someone in a obviously dire situation(the list goes on!),results in the death of anyone I can't see Yahweh shrugging his shoulders.The labelling and shunning of those who tell the truth about the organization like Ray Franz..those who recognize Christ as brother and mediator is neither excusable,biblical,or Christian either.These are just a few of the ways the WT society has brought reproach upon Jehovah's name and rendered their own carrying of it blasphemous.This is dangerous.

"No matter how often individuals,or an organization of people,may voice that literal name(Jehovah)(claiming a special righteousness by their repeated use of such name),if they do not genuinely reflect,in attitude,conduct,and practice,what the Person himself is like-his qualities,ways and standards-then they have not truly come to "know his name" in the Scriptural sense."

Franz then goes on the say that use of that name would amount to no more than lip service..

"If they claim to speak "in his name" yet misrepresent what He himself states in His own word,or make false predictions "in his name," or devise and impose unscriptural legislation and rules "in his name," or make unjust judgments and condemnations "in his name,"then they have,in effect,"taken his name in vain."They have acted in a way that neither has his authorization,nor reflects his qualities and standards and what He himself is as a person."p.510

I want to emphasize to JW's,since their literature doesn't,that "name" entails much more than a literal spoken name.I think the reason the WT doesn't stress this fact so much(even though they acknowledge it on occasion) is because they like to set themselves apart from "Christendom" by using God's name constantly.They like to pretend they're the only ones who use it.They shouldn't really be proud of a division and a distinguishing of themselves with a self adopted name but rather they should be called Christian like all followers of Christ and nothing else.It's really disheartening how they bear God's name so prominently and then oft-times produce repelling fruit.


As Ray says in "In Search of Christian Freedom,"Charles Taze Russell opposed the adoption of any distinguishing name like "Jehovah's Witnesses,"viewing it as a form of sectarianism and I would have to agree with Russell on this one.Interestingly JW's and WT literature praise Charles Taze Russell as a true servant of God but if modern day JW's believed even a small portion of what he taught and believed,they'd be doomed for destruction,labelled and shunned.In an April 1882 WT John Bunyan was quoted(and agreed with.)He said:

"As for factious or sect titles of Anabaptist,Presbyterian,Independent,or the like,I conclude that they came neither from Antioch nor from Jerusalem,but from Hell and Babylon,for they tend to divisions;you may know them by their fruits."

To quote Ray:

"Isaiah 43:10-12 is the primary text used by the organization to justify its chosen name.This scripture,however,simply presents a figurative court case,in which all nations are gathered and before whom the Israelites are called upon by God to bear testimony to his saving power exercised on their behalf."p.490

As we all know,however,followers of Christ after he came to die on our behalf are called nothing but Christian,and those OT passages for the Israelites have absolutely nothing to do with the modern day WT society. If JW's were Christ's true followers they would be proud to bear the name Christian and if they were true to the bible's command to not be sectarian they wouldn't desire a distinguishing that I for one think is haughty in that they erroneously think they exclusively proclaim God's name in some way and that they're the only ones who live up to carrying it,no matter how many times they've proven themselves to be as seriously flawed as any other religious institution.

"By what right do men who claim to be footstep followers of God's Son select a name which does not even bear witness to the Christ?(Acts 1:8,Acts 11:26)?How do they justify using a name that reaches back some 700 years before his appearance as the Messiah,back to words spoken to the Jewish people under the Law Covenant?"p.491

The JW's used the name as infrequently as any other Christian when Jesus supposedly chose their organization to be his sole channel in 1919.So if it means they're true Christians because of using it more than "false"Christians,then they weren't true Christians when Jesus supposedly chose them.Even though today they use God's name more than any other group,their claims that they had to "restore" it are certainly unfounded.

"The fact is that religious writers of various Christian faiths had employed the name Jehovah in their writings with considerable frequency for centuries before the appearance of the WT society."p.492

A repetitive use of a name in no way necessarily honors it.Since there is no evidence the apostles used Yah's name repetitively,they,by the WT organization's standards,would be apostates since the society claims their use of it is one giant proof they're God's only true servants.Repeatedly using a name in no way means one is a true follower of that one.To say"well I use his name all the time and therefore I'm a true Christian" would be ridiculous.Do Christians who use Jesus's name all the time necessarily really follow him?I have heard JW's say God wouldn't have allowed them to adopt the name "Jehovah's Witnesses" if they weren't really the only true Christians.That would be like me saying "God wouldn't have allowed Christians to use the name Jesus all the time if they weren't true Christians."Use of a proper noun does not a true Christian make.

We must stand alone and not organizationally when God comes to judge through Christ.As a JW,do you really think a banner or being true to the governing body of a super wealthy publishing corporation can save you?

"When the angels of God carry out the parabolic picture in effecting the harvest of the wheat from the weeds,labels in the form of denominational names surely will play no part."p.492

What's in a name?

A name has to do with the will,personality, reputation,life record,authority etc. of someone.When the bible says we must call on God or His Son's name to be saved it means we have to know who they are,what they're about and to have a relationship with them.A name expresses character and history,who one is,what one has done,what one stands for..etc..

"Ultimately,then,in speaking of one's "name" the true reference may be,not to just a word or phrase used to designate an individual,but to the person himself,his personality,qualities,principles and record,what he himself IS.(Somewhat similarly,when we appeal to someone "in the name of mercy" we refer to all that the quality of mercy represents and stands for.)It can therefore rightly be said,even if we know the name by which a person is called,if we do not know him for who he actually is,we do not really know his "name" in the true,vital sense."p. 507


When God says his people shall know his name..when Jesus says he made his father's name known..when we're told to call upon Jehovah's all obviously entails much more than a proclaimed proper noun.And though I know JW's know this,I think it often is overlooked or ignored in favor of distinguishing themselves as somehow more righteous and true than others just because they use God's personal name.The MOST personal name,however,is "father."

In God's relationship with an individual,the most important name you can use,and that which Jesus used,is Father.He is called "FATHER" 260 times in the Christian Greek scriptures.We don't address our human fathers with their names..but rather reverently refer to them with an intimate name that encapsulates more than just a proper noun.

I think perhaps the most disturbing reason the governing body urges JW's to use Jehovah repetitively as opposed to placing any emphasis on "Father" is once again,because they deny that almost every JW can even be adopted as God's children.I'm not negating the use of God's name.In fact,I think it's absurd to say he used it thousands upon thousands of times and then expected us to ignore it,to not utter it,and to shrink from its use.I am simply trying to emphasize to JW's how fantastic it is to be able to pray to our Father in heaven.To call him Father frequently so as to become more intimately acquainted,to let him know you understand that he cares and protects and guides and gave us life and disciplines us as a Father who loves us would.Only more superbly so,and perfectly,like our human fathers cannot.Human fathers disappoint,sometimes even abuse us.But God is One who never will,who loves us more than any human ever could,who was so desperate to save us that he gave his most beloved Son!So as a JW,next time you pray to Jehovah and use that name constantly in prayer..I want you to think about calling him Father more if you don't already.Jesus became our father too when he bought our lives with his blood.And it would really be a shame if you didn't also call him "father" or "brother."He's our father as the second Adam and our brother if we are Christian.Jesus didn't say he could only be a brother to a few men,but rather,throughout the entire NT,indicated that Christians ARE his brothers and sisters,not excluding any who exercise faith.

Christ opened the way for us to be adopted as God's children.Don't throw away the opportunity by putting your faith in men,in whom no salvation belongs.We can,through Christ,become children of God.And it is only through this intimate relationship that that we can truly say we know God's "name" in the greatest possible complete and heartfelt sense that we should as Christians.As our father,having the glorious freedom of one of God's children,as opposed to a "mother organization's" child or Satan's child.Don't let the society rob you of choosing to be a genuine child of's the only option for a Christian.The only other option,to be a child of Satan,is certainly not ok..yet JW's are forbidden to be children of God NOW.This should disturb you! My main intent here was to get JW's to address God as "father" more..It may open up the door to more understanding about his role for you as a Christian and for further intimacy with him.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Why do trinitarians omit relevant facts?

Trinitarians are fond of doing something I've seen appropriately called "misuse of similarities" to prove Jesus is the same God his father is.They play a game of pretend and omission.I'm not sure how honest it is to ignore the fact that NUMEROUS OT passages applied to people like David,Solomon,Nebuchadnezzar,Melchizedek(in addition to a few about Jehovah which is their ONLY focus while they're trying to prove Jesus is the True God with this method) are ALSO applied to God's Christ,God's servant and Son,King Jesus,in the New Testament.Also,many foreshadowings of the Messiah in the lives and life work of people like Moses and Joseph are fulfilled in Christ in a greater way.With trinitarian standards and logic,because Jesus is foreshadowed by these men and passages applied to them are also applied to Christ,Jesus is a person in the being of a number of beings,from David to Moses and not just himself(The Son/Messiah of God) anymore..Interestingly and unfairly,they often don't point out what is commonly done in the bible apply the same passages used of others in the OT to Jesus in the NT in DIFFERENT FULFILMENTS AND APPLICATIONS.They simply present that some about Yah are applied to Jesus,not that those about others besides Yah are as well.Wonder why they omit that information?The reason why this is disturbing is because if someone who is witnessed to doesn't know this,he or she can be fooled that this only happens with Yah and Jesus and assume the trinitarian omitting vital facts could be proving something that isn't true.In other words,their omissions are fodder for potential deception.Let me demonstrate exactly what they're doing and what conclusions we will reach using their reason(which is unreasonable) and their logic(which is illogical) and their standards(which are dangerous.)I don't personally think it's right to prove something with a standard that omits relevant facts.Now,let's get started.

First let's give an example of trinitarian reasoning.They say that since Yah and Jesus are BOTH called the rock of offense in a passage applied to both of them at different times that they have to be the same God!(1 Peter 2:8,Is. 8:14)BOTH of them are rocks of offense to disobedient unbelievers.All one needs to do is recognize how the texts applied to both have different fulfillments in each and pertain to both.If Jesus and Jehovah are both called the rock of offense does that mean they share a substance and being?Given scriptural applications of the same texts to more than one being at different times in different fulfillments and applications commonly in scripture,of course not!Obviously,because God is too holy to walk amongst unholy mankind,he is our rock THROUGH others,making those he works through our rocks too.Just like Jesus's light shining through his followers means not only is Jesus our light but those he shines through are too.Or when elders comfort us,God is our comforter through the elders if they're good shepherds like his firstborn was.When people are called saviors in scripture even though the bible says God is the only savior,it is because no one could save without God saving through them.The bible says God saves through Christ. :-)Suffice it to say that when God works through Jesus as his chief agent in all things and gives him all power in heaven and on earth as his inheritance as the one he made firstborn,many of the same phrases could be used and many of the same things could be said of both.This occurs in different applications and fulfillments because God uses and highly exalts his Christ and Son and accomplishes so much through his agency,essentially making Jesus the great Amen.

This in the book of Samuel is said about Solomon:

2 Samuel 7:14:I will be his father, and he will be my son.

This in the book of Hebrews is said about Christ

Hebrews 1:5:"I will be his Father, and he will be my Son"?

So using trinitarian standards and logic the ONLY possible conclusion(which would be an erroneous and absurd one) is that Jesus is the same being Solomon is!Two separate sons,same substance.That's the way it would have to be according to trinitarians because with their logic a passage applied to one then applied to Jesus makes Jesus a person of the substance of that someone.

Let's examine
Psalm 45:6,7:Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.

This is a psalm first fulfilled,according to most scholars,in King Solomon.How in the world could King Solomon also be called God?Because in Hebraic times God's kings and agents and exalted servants representing him could sometimes be called God(gasp!),like Moses was in Exodus 7:1 and 4:16.How come trinitarians ignore this?

These exact words about Solomon,who,like Jesus,had a God,were also attributed to Jesus in Hebrews 1:9 & 10..the EXACT same words.By trinitarian logic,this HAS TO mean Jesus is Solomon,again.

Nebuchadnezzar is called "king of kings" in Daniel 2:37.Jesus is in Revelation 17:14.A facsimile to a typical trinitarian argument in relation to when similar phrases are used of Yah and Jesus both would be "Well,no one but one being could be called king of kings..There's only ONE king of kings..How could there be two?Therefore Nebuchadnezzar and Jesus must share a substance and a being!"

We all know many things said of Melchizedek are also precisely said of Jesus and we also know logically they don't share a substance either.

So,again,WHY do similar phraseologies or passages applied to both Yah and Christ mean they have to share a substance and being,nothing the bible EVER mentions?

Now to address all the texts first applied to David and Solomon then is some logic I already used in another blog:

Is saying "well ,David and Solomon foreshadowed or were a type of Christ so it isn't the same thing" a good reason to be bias when the same texts are applied to both them and Christ and that's the only reason THEY don't have to share a substance?No.Because the same texts are applied to both for the same reasons the ones about Yah are applied to Jesus...DIFFERENT APPLICATIONS AND FULFILLMENTS and pertaining to BOTH in different ways ..that simple.In other words,to be fair and unbiased ,if you are going to assume Jesus is Jehovah by this reasoning,then you MUST assume Jesus is David and Solomon(and others),unless you're simply unwilling to be unbiased.

It should be no surprise that calling on the name of Jesus (In Joel it says to call on Yah's Romans Jesus's)and proskeneo'ing(oft translated as worship or bow down to or honor) Jesus is very important ,just as it is important to do so of Jehovah.Therefore just because,like we've demonstrated the bible commonly does,there may be a text that says to worship Yah then it's also applied to Jesus,doesn't mean they have to share a substance but rather that Jesus is King now and we must honor him to the glory of the one who commands this as that one's extoller.In Hebraic times Yah's kings were proskeneo'd with people's faces to the ground.One clear example where God's king is worshiped at the same time God is is found in:

*1 Chronicles 29:20:Then David said to the whole assembly, "Praise the LORD your God." So they all praised the LORD, the God of their fathers; they bowed low and fell prostrate before the LORD and the king.

With common trinitarian logic,the king would have to be a person of God's substance for this to be acceptable.Or perhaps the trinitarian would say that the king here would be insane to accept this worship if he too weren't God.But then again,with anyone but Christ,they would know better!

Trinitarian arguments are often simply bias and blind.

The bible says all of Jesus,who isn't a split personality and 200 percent,was faithful and loved enough for his father to command that he be honored highly,similar to how Yah commands the synagogue of Satan to proskeneo(translated worship) faithful Christians that he also loves in Revelation 3:9,BECAUSE he loves them and,well,God IS love.Jesus is more exalted and important than they by far but being the second most high person in the universe means one ISN'T the most high.(1 Corinthians 15:27,28).. Jesus worships the same God who COMMANDED the angels to worship Jesus because of Christ's faithfulness,goodness,obedience,and inheritance,and not due to ontology.At least I can't find anywhere where it is said ontologically Christ requires worship to the glory of another equal substance existing in the same God that he is..

Jehovah reveals himself through his agent Jesus.This fact should make for an easy understanding of why certain things could be said of both.

All power in heaven and on earth has been given Jesus.The difference is..all power was given Jesus whereas no power has ever been given God.And to say all power was given a nature from the first person of the same being of which that human nature is 100 of 200 percent of the second person of that SAME triune being is absurd in the highest order.Should be no surprise that calling on the name of Jesus,through whom Yah is working and saving and resurrecting and judging and blessing,has tremendous power,second only to Yah's name,which is actually wrapped up in Jesus's.After all,Jesus means "Jehovah is salvation."Even if Jesus can be called Yah as Yah's agent according to the Hebrew law of agency or as a surname,the bible makes it clear that whatever name Jesus has was given him.As if ANYONE ever had to give God or a nature a name!Jesus is the mediator between God and man,the great Amen,in whom God sustains all things and blesses all things,through whom He saves,resurrects,judges and glorifies others.Praise them both as The Only True God and his Son and king,as opposed to the Only true God that includes his own son in the same entity unless you want to do something scripture doesn't tell you to do!Because then you would be worshipping a Platonic Greek philosophical unbiblical God.Jesus has a God.There is a God OF the Lord Jesus Christ and all that could possibly mean is that the one God MADE to be our Lord isn't the same God who made him Lord.If the Most High has a God,then he's no longer the Most High God.Obviously,the Most High is the Only True God,the God of Jesus Christ.To say God has a God within his own being..that the second person of God's God is superior only in a functional but not an ontological way..that father and son is simply relational terminology and not what it naturally would mean are clearly not asserted in scripture.These are MANMADE arguments,introduced from Platonically schooled men,not scripture.Those who will suggest that I'm ignoring the incarnation..why yes I am because it's not a scriptural truth.God didn't become a man,allowing his fully God nature to hibernate while his fully man nature took over when he desired it to,but rather sent a son to become the Last Adam,fully man,perfect,like his brothers in every way,obedient,faithful and true like the first perfect man was not,vindicating God's sovereignty by proving that man(someone TRULY man with God's spirit upon him and nothing else..anything beyond that is Gnostic) can love,obey and succumb to God wholeheartedly.If Jesus was God the whole truth of all that Jesus actually accomplished would be negated.Like proving that man CAN be true to God..NOT that the second person of God's substance can be true to the first person of God's substance.God can't die and a nature can't "sleep" etc..but that's a whole other story.

No Son of God,not even the only uniquest most exalted one born of a virgin womb,is the same God whose son he is,who sent him forth.Either Jesus lied when he said his father was the only true God and confirmed the Shema as his statement of faith,(and no Jew thought God was three people),OR trinitarians are lying that Jesus's father isn't the Only True God.Jesus worshipped the True God ,the One God of the Shema,the same God of the OT Jews,who was One person(Mark 12:28-34)..If Jesus's God isn't 3 people,why is yours?As Christians,aren't we supposed to follow Jesus and do what he did?Well,Jesus,all of his being and not just a nature attached to someone fully God, worshiped his father as the only True God.Mr.Trinitarian,if you're truly sola scriptura,then John 17:3 is as crystal clear and unprecarious a text as is possible.A beautiful scriptural formula that I would say is an inspired irrefutable creed.It doesn't gel so well with the Nicene one.