CAN DISFELLOWSHIPPED PARTAKE OF THE EMBLEMS?

Can a disfellowshipped Jehovah’s Witnesses partake of the Memorial emblems?

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NO – The Watchtower 6/15/1956 p. 383 – Questions From Readers

A disfellowshiped person is no member of Jehovah’s congregation and may not be served the emblems by those serving at the celebration of the Lord’s evening meal.

YES – The Watchtower 8/1/1958 p. 478 – Questions From Readers

It is not for you or anyone serving the Memorial emblems to act as the judge, but to allow the emblems to go to anyone in the audience as these are passed along in the normal manner of letting each one have the opportunity to partake.

NO – The Watchtower 4/1/1960 p. 224 – Questions From Readers

Disfellowshiped persons are not welcome. Should they attend and partake, they would not be counted.

YES – The Watchtower 2/1/1976 p. 76 “Keep Doing This in Remembrance of Me”

Those counted as partakers are those known as faithful, baptized servants of God. We do not invite disfellowshiped persons to attend. But if such a one is present, there is no reason to be disturbed if he is seated in a row with others and proceeds to partake of the emblems.

Note: If since 1976 a disfellowshipped person can eat the most important Lords Evening Meal with other anointed, does that violate 1Co 5:11 “But now I am writing YOU to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother…, not even eating with such a man”?

At the same time, a disfellowshipped person cannot eat with his own family.

IS IT CORRECT TO USE THE PHRASE “HUMAN BEINGS”?

maxresdefaultYES – The Watchtower 1/15/1957 pp. 46-47

Monotheism Preceded Polytheism as human beings became civilized…

NO – The Watchtower 12/15/1958 p. 764 – Questions From Readers

…in the light of what is above said we trust you will understand why our publications have restricted the expression [“beings”] to Jehovah God.

YES – The Watchtower 8/1/1994 – Jehovah Is Reasonable! Question 15 (a)

What examples show that Jehovah has been willing to listen and respond to human beings?

HOW IMPORTANT IS THE ORGANIZATION?

What have Jehovah’s Witnesses said over the years in reference to God’s organization or being in an organized religion?

  • 1893 – No organization today. WT 1893 p.266
  • 1894 – Not part of the Lord’s plan. WT 12/1/1894 p. 384
  • 1895 – Beware of organization. WT 9-15-1895 p.216
  • 1955 – Respect the organization. Qualified to be Ministers, 1955, p.380
  • 1957 – You must have obedience to organization. WT 5/1/57 p.274
  • 1972 – Submit to headship. (Governing Body) WT 12-15-72 p.755
  • 1983 – Essential part of the Lord’s plan. WT 2/15/83 p.12
  • 2012 – Bible points to organized worship as the kind acceptable to God. Awake! 2012 Sept. p.21

WHAT IS THE WATCHTOWER’S DEFINITION OF ‘APOSTASY’?

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Insight on the Scriptures Volume 1 p. 127 – Apostasy – What characteristics identify apostates as distinct from true Christians?

Among the varied causes of apostasy set forth in apostolic warnings were:…the heeding of the “counterfeit words” of false teachers and “misleading inspired utterances”…Apostates often seek to make others their followers. (Ac 20:30; 2Pe 2:1, 3) Such ones willfully abandoning the Christian congregation thereby become part of the “antichrist.” (1Jo 2:18, 19) As with the apostate Israelites, destruction is likewise foretold for apostates from the Christian congregation.

WHOSE WITNESSES SHOULD CHRISTIANS BE?

maxresdefaultThe Watchtower 3/15/2013 p. 24 par. 2 – Honor Jehovah’s Great Name

“Jehovah’s Witnesses, on the other hand, are proud to bear God’s name and to glorify it.”

Acts 11:26 – “the disciples were by divine providence called Christians.”

Matthew 10:18 – “…for my sake, for a witness to them and the nations.”[JESUS]

Mark 13:9 – “…before governors and kings for my sake, for a witness to them.” [JESUS]

Luke 24:47, 48 “and on the basis of [JESUS] name, repentance for forgiveness of sins would be preached in all the nations… You are to be witnesses of these things”

Acts 1:8 – “You will be witnesses of me…” [JESUS]

John 1:15 – “John bore witness about him…” [JESUS]

John 5:37 – “the Father who sent me has himself borne witness about me.” [JESUS]

John 8:18 – “the Father who sent me bears witness about me.” [JESUS]

John 15:26,27 – “…will bear witness about me; and YOU in turn, are to bear witness.” [JESUS]

Acts 4:17,18 – “…upon the basis of this name [Jesus] …. upon the basis of the name of Jesus.”

Acts 10:39 – “And we are witnesses of all the things he [Jesus] did…”

Acts 10:43 – “To him [Jesus] all the prophets bear witness…”

Acts 13:31 – “who are now his [Jesus’] witnesses to the people.”

Acts 22:15 – “because you are to be a witness for him [Jesus] to all men…”

Acts 22:20 – “……the blood of Stephen your [Jesus’] witness was being spilled…”

Acts 23:11 – “….. a thorough witness on the things about me in Jerusalem…” [JESUS]

Acts 26:16 -“I [Jesus]..choose you as an attendant and a witness…respecting me” [JESUS]

1 Corinthians 1:6 – “even as the witness about the Christ…”

Galatians 1:6-8 – “…if we or an angel out of heaven were to declare to you as good news something beyond the good news [about Christ] we declared to you, let him be accursed.”

1 Tim. 2:6 – “..what is to be witnessed to at its own particular times.”

2 Timothy 1:8 – “…of the witness about our Lord.. [Christ]”

1 John 5:9 – “the witness God gives…the fact that he has borne witness concerning his Son.”

Revelation 1:9 – “….for speaking about God and bearing witness to Jesus.”

Revelation 3:8 – ….”and you kept my word and did not prove false to my name.” [JESUS]

Revelation 12:17 – “…and have the work of bearing witness to Jesus.”

Revelation 17:6 – “…and with the blood of the witnesses of Jesus.”

Revelation 19:10 -“…the work of witnessing to Jesus…. bearing witness to Jesus.”

Revelation 20:4 – “… for the witness they bore to Jesus.”

Note: 

Isa 43:10 “‘You are my witnesses,’ declares Jehovah” is a reminder about what God had done and will do.

  • Vs 1: God reminds them that he bought them and they belong to him. (Jacob and Israel)
  • Vs 2: God promises to protect them
  • Vs 3: God reminds them that Egypt was their ransom
  • Vs 4: God tells them they are precious in His eyes
  • Vs 5-7: God assures them of his continued being with them
  • Vs 8-9: Now, here’s the key: God issues a challenge to the nations and asks them to produce THEIR witnesses to see who is right: “Let all the nations assemble in one place…Let them present their witnesses to prove themselves right…”
  • Vs 10: God then says to the Israelites, “YOU are my witnesses.”

This wasn’t about naming a group of people. This was about who is right and who is wrong. Who could produce witnesses for themselves that could truthfully claim to have been a saviour, protector, etc. This was God’s challenge to the nations, and He names the Israelites as HIS witnesses to that fact.

Then Isa 62:2 adds “The nations will see your righteousness, O woman, And all kings your glory. And you will be called by a new name, Which Jehovah’s own mouth will designate.”

This was fulfilled in Acts 11:26 – “the disciples were by divine providence called Christians.”

 

 

HOW DO JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES VIEW WORSHIPPING JESUS?

fdb19eba49d09cce0f672bd1391b8142What have Jehovah’s Witnesses historically taught about whether Jesus should be worshipped?

Up to 1954 “YES” – Pastor C.T.Russell taught that Jesus was to be worshiped – Zion’s Watch Tower 1898 Jul 15 p.216

“Question. The fact that our Lord received worship is claimed by some to be an evidence that while on earth he was God the Father disguised in a body of flesh and not really a man. Was he really worshiped, or is the translation faulty?

Answer. Yes, we believe our Lord Jesus while on earth was really worshiped, and properly so. … It was proper for our Lord to receive worship in view of his having been the only begotten of the Father and his agent in the creation of all things, including man.”

Judge J.F.Rutherford also taught that Jesus was to be worshiped – Watchtower 1939 Nov 15 p.339.

“Jehovah God commands all to worship Christ Jesus because Christ Jesus is the express image of his Father, Jehovah, and because he is the Executive Officer of Jehovah always carrying out Jehovah’s purpose (Heb.:3–6).”

Nathan Knorr continued the policy of teaching that Jesus was to be worshiped by all – Watchtower 1945 Oct 15 p.313

“Since Jehovah God now reigns as King by means of his capital organization Zion, then whosoever would worship Him must also worship and bow down to Jehovah’s Chief One in that capital organization, namely, Christ Jesus, his Co-regent on the throne of The Theocracy.”

In 1945 Knorr amended the Watchtower Charter. Included within the new Charter is the statement that the purpose of the Watchtower Society is to promote the worship of Jehovah and Jesus. This charter is a legal document that continues to be the Watchtower Charter to this day.

From 1954 on, the answer to whether we should worship Jesus was “NO”

The Watchtower 1/1/1954 p.31 – Questions from readers: “Should we worship Jesus?”—G. B., Ethiopia.

…the answer to the above question must be that no distinct worship is to be rendered to Jesus Christ now glorified in heaven. Our worship is to go to Jehovah God.

Hebrews 1:6 [As published in New World Translation, 1961, p.1293]

6 But when he again brings his Firstborn into the inhabited earth, he says: “And let all God’s angels worship him.”

Hebrews 1:6 [as published in New World Translation, 1971, p.1293]

6 But when he again brings his Firstborn into the inhabited earth, he says: “And let all God’s angels do obeisance to him.”

IS WATCHTOWER’S MESSAGE DIFFERENT FROM JESUS’ MESSAGE?

NO – Galatians 1:8

“However, even if we or an angel out of heaven were to declare to you as good news something beyond what we declared to you as good news, let him be accursed.”

YES – Benefit From Theocratic Ministry School Education p.279 para.2

“Note, however, that the message that Jesus said would be proclaimed in our day goes beyond what his followers preached in the first century.”

WHO ARE THE “SUPERIOR AUTHORITIES” MENTIONED IN ROMANS 13:1?

102011166_univ_sqr_xlWho have the Jehovah’s Witnesses historically identified as the “Superior Authorities” mentioned in Romans 13:1?

1886 – Earthly governments – Divine Plan of the Ages, 1886, p.266

1889 – Earthly governments – Time Is At Hand, 1889, p.81

1929 – God and Christ – Watchtower 1929 Jun 1 p.163

1932 – God and Christ – Vindication, Vol. 3, 1932, p.13

1943 – God and Christ – The Truth Shall Make You Free, 1943, p.312

1951 – God and Christ – The Watchtower 1/1/1951 p. 21 “A Heavy Weight Was Lifted From His People”

1959 – God and Christ – Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Divine Purpose, p.91

1963 – Earthly political governments – The Watchtower 1/1/63 p.31

1975 – Earthly political governments – 1975 Yearbook, p.238

1980 – Earthly political governments – The Watchtower 5/15/80 p.4

HOW IMPORTANT IS THE BOOK STUDY TO JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES?

60How have Jehovah’s Witnesses historically viewed the importance of their meeting called the “Book Study”?

IT IS FROM JEHOVAH – Kingdom Ministry 5/1975 p. 2 – Your Service Meetings

Show how congregation book study is valuable meeting that Jehovah has arranged.

MANY BENEFITS – Kingdom Ministry 12/1978 p. 3 par. 3 – Showing Appreciation for the Congregation Book Study

Consider some of the following benefits of the book study arrangement : (1) The groups are smaller, with better opportunities for close fellowship. (2) It is easier for all to comment freely…; we can get answers to questions on points not entirely clear from our personal study. (3) It provides a convenient center for organizing field service. (4) Conductors can get to know you better and are in a good position to assist with personal problems, give training in field service and help you with Scriptural questions.

BLESSED BY JEHOVAH – Kingdom Ministry 1/1983 p. 7 par. 9 – Assisting Others Through the Congregation Book Study

Those who regularly attend the book study are convinced that it has Jehovah’s blessing

VITAL – Kingdom Ministry 7/1991 p. 3 par. 1 Part 1 – Responsibility of Study Conductor

The Congregation Book Study plays a vital role in the spiritual development of Jehovah’s people… The Congregation Book Study is a blessing to us

IMPORTANT – Kingdom Ministry 8/1991 p. 7 par. 2 Part 2—Need to Prepare and Participate

Regularly attending the Congregation Book Study, therefore, should be an integral part of our personal program for acquiring wisdom… Active participation in the Congregation Book Study also plays an important part in our spiritual development.

FROM JEHOVAH – Kingdom Ministry 10/1991 p. 8 par. 6 Part 4—Continue Building One Another Up

The Congregation Book Study is a loving provision from Jehovah that needs our full support.

A BLESSING – Kingdom Ministry 8/2007 p. 8 par. 6 – How the Congregation Book Study Arrangement Helps Us

What a blessing the Congregation Book Study is! This loving arrangement from Jehovah helps us maintain our sure spiritual footing during the challenging times in which we live.

NO LONGER NEEDED – Kingdom Ministry 1/2011 p. 3 par. 3 – Help for Families

What Is the Purpose of the Family Worship Evening? In January 2009, the Congregation Book Study began to be held on the same evening as the Theocratic Ministry School and Service Meeting. One reason for this adjustment was to give families an opportunity to fortify their spirituality by scheduling a specific evening each week for family worship. Each family was encouraged to move its family study to the night formerly used for the book study.

WHEN DID BABYLON THE GREAT HOLD GOD’S PEOPLE CAPTIVE?

CAj_uiuUsAAKZ43What have Jehovah’s Witnesses historically taught regarding Babylon the Great in Revelation holding God’s people captive?

1918 – The Watchtower 12/15/1951 p. 748 par. 2 – Release Under Way to the Ends of the Earth

Hence, when the visible organization appeared desolated beyond repair in 1918 and the power of great Babylon over her seemed unbreakable, Jehovah sent his Servant to the rescue.

1919 – The Watchtower 12/15/1954 p. 753 par. 17 – Prospects of Fearers of Jehovah for 1955

Historically, this was true of the spiritual remnant in 1919. At that time they were lying in the darkness of bondage and oppression under the great organization of darkness, mystic Babylon.

1918 – The Watchtower 12/15/1955 – p. 749 par. 15 The Test That Leads to a Blessing

So the judgment began first with Jehovah’s witnesses after he came to his spiritual temple in 1918…Then especially they came into a captive, exiled condition like that of the ancient Israelites in pagan Babylon.

1914-1918 – The Watchtower 11/15/1967 p. 686 par. 8 – “Let Down Your Nets for a Catch”

But along came World War I, which was fought during 1914-1918 mostly by the nations of Christendom. During this war these separated congregations of truly dedicated, baptized Christians came into bondage to Christendom. Thus, since Christendom is the most powerful part of religious Babylon the Great, they went into a captivity like that of the Jews who went into exile in ancient Babylon

1918 – The Watchtower, 12/1/1970 p. 726 par. 26 – The Desolating of Christendom by the “Disgusting Thing”

Fleeing out of the antitypical unfaithful Jerusalem (Christendom) has been the right thing for them to do at any time since the end of World War I in 1918. Such fleeing out of Christendom has meant also fleeing out of Babylon the Great, for Christendom is also an integral part of religious Babylon the Great. And, as modern history shows, the anointed “chosen ones” of Jehovah God have been fleeing from bondage to Christendom and Babylon the Great since the year 1919

1918 – The Watchtower, 3/15/1992 p. 11 par. 18 – Do Not Miss the Purpose of God-Given Freedom

In 1918 Jehovah’s servants came into a measure of bondage to Babylon the Great.

2nd Century CE through 1919 – The Watchtower 3/2016 p.29 par.1 – When were God’s people held captive by Babylon the Great?

That spiritual captivity lasted from the second century C.E. to 1919.