To someone who is an active Jehovah’s Witness this may seem like a strange title. After all you spend a lot of your time on a weekly if not daily basis asking people if they would like to go through a “Bible Study” with you. A common fact you will often share with people is that people just don’t read the Bible as much these days as they used too. When Charles Russell first formed a movement he even called it “The Bible Students Association”.
However, if you truly honestly ask yourself the question. “What is my authority for Belief, the Bible or the Watchtower Bible and tract society?” what is your answer?
Can you? And indeed do you take your beliefs, theology and world view from the pages of scripture?
The Watchtower Magazine once said.
“Thus the Bible is an organizational book and belongs to the Christian congregation as an organization, not to individuals, regardless of how sincerely they may believe that they can interpret the Bible. For this reason the Bible cannot be properly understood without Jehovah’s visible organization in mind.”—The Watchtower, October 1, 1967, p. 587
This gets me thinking about a teaching session by Paul in the Bible. Now Paul as you will know was an Apostle with the authority to write scripture, much of the New Testament was written by Him, however lets see what happens here.
Acts 17:10-12 (New World Translation)
10 Immediately by night the brothers sent both Paul and Silas to Be·roe′a. On arriving, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thes·sa·lo·ni′ca, for they accepted the word with the greatest eagerness of mind, carefully examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. 12 Therefore, many of them became believers, and so did quite a few of the reputable Greek women as well as some of the men.
When you receive teaching from your organization, do you search the scriptures to see if what they are saying is so? What do you think would happen if you did……and found a contradiction?
Another Watchtower article said.
“We all need help to understand the Bible, and we cannot find the Scriptural guidance we need outside the ‘faithful and discreet slave’ organization.”—The Watchtower, February 15, 1981, p. 19
So how does this work? If the Bereans in Acts 17 tested what Paul was saying with the scriptures how can they be called Noble Minded? Surely they were arrogant for daring to question the teaching of someone with such authority.
I look at some of the teachings of the Watchtower Bible and tract society such as:
- Jesus being Michael the Archangel in Human Form.
- The majority of Christians having no need to be born again.
- Jesus being a created being.
The reason being is that none of these things are actually said in the Bible. Do you realise that? Yes there are pages of material on Jw.org explaining these things, but the reason it takes so many pages is because these things are not clearly said. It takes a lot of explaining to justify these teachings.
So you may be reading this and thinking “You have totally missed the point, I read the Bible alone all the time, it alone is my highest authority.”
Really? You could be in trouble!
“They say that it is sufficient to read the bible exclusively, either alone or in small groups at home. But, strangely, through such ‘Bible reading,’ they have reverted right back to the apostate doctrines that commentaries by Christendom’s clergy were teaching 100 years ago…”—The Watchtower, August 15, 1981, pp. 28-29
According to Watchtower teachings……..you guessed it, you can’t read the Bible alone. If you dare to actually use the Bible alone as your authority for belief you are in good company with the Noble Minded Bereans, and many Christians all around the world, but you could be in trouble with your organization.
Its your Choice, read the Bible, or the Watchtower.
“Furthermore, not only do we find that people cannot see the divine plan in studying the Bible by itself, but we see, also, that if anyone lays the SCRIPTURE STUDIES aside, even after he has used them, after he has become familiar with them, after he has read them for ten years—if he then lays them aside and ignores them and goes to the Bible alone, though he has understood his Bible for ten years, our experience shows that within two years he goes into darkness.” —The Watch Tower, September 15, 1910, p. 298, Watchtower Reprints, p. 4685
Really? Reading the Bible leads to darkness?
Are you abiding in His word? Are you Free? Think about it, when does the Bible ever say that abiding in the word of God leads to darkness?
Who are you trusting in for your eternity? It’s a long time to be wrong.
Jesus said to him: “I am the way+ and the truth+ and the life.+ No one comes to the Father except through me
The Watchtower said.
“Come to Jehovah’s organization for salvation” – Watchtower 1981 Nov 15 p.212
So I will ask you one more time, will you read the Bible, or the Watchtower?
Ask yourself this question “have I ever studied the Bible without looking at the watchtower library CD ROM to try and find out what it means?”. If you think that it is impossible to understand the Bible without the Watchtower explaining it…well have you ever considered why God would give us the scriptures only to make hard for us understand, until about 1900 hundred years after it was written!
Websites like this do not exist to try and mock your beliefs, they are here to try and encourage you to test what you believe against the authority which is of course God’s word the Bible. I hope and pray you will do this.