The Watchtower (WT) interestingly believe that their beliefs/teachings are completely in accordance to the Bible and that the Bible is their only source of truth, which is a great start, yet ironically they ask every follower to avoid reading the Bible on its own, but rather follow the Bible based on what the WT interprets through their own publications and sermons.
This of course means that each Jehovah’s Witness (JW) places full dependency on the WT Org for their interpretation of scripture and thereby heavily rely on their publications. But is this the correct way to read the Bible? And why cannot anyone be able to read the Bible on their own without any other writing?
To answer this question and ultimately demonstrate why you should read the Bible without the WT, let’s look at the following
WT Org claim in order to demonstrate why they need to help ones interpret the Bible
- They are the only ones that receive God’s spirit of revelation and interpretation of the Bible
- All JW’s outside of the Watchtower Org, are unable to interpret scripture alone
- WT require full obedience to the WT due to their privileged position
- JW’s have to use WT publications in order to understand the Bible and its application for today
- The WT Org are the only true channel used by God today
- You will fall into apostasy if you read the Bible alone
- The WT Org are God’s spokesman
Issues with the WT Org Claim
- The WT Org admit they are NOT inspired and are imperfect men that make mistakes
- The WT have made many prophecies that they claim are from God, but ALL have not come true
- JW’s are not allowed to test/challenge the Organisation
- WT Org keep many secrets from its members (rules, policies etc)
- Many of their policies etc are in direct conflict to human rights
- The WT have changed on numerous occasions many of their beliefs despite claiming they are from God
- Altered their Own Bible translation to fit their current doctrine even where it does not match with original manuscript translation
- Some of the explanations of scripture provided in their publications are not in proper context
- Followers cannot exercise an independent mind and do not have true freedom in their Faith
- WT track record does not demonstrate any real proof that they are deserving of their status
- The Bible does not say anywhere explicitly that God assigned a man-made Org in the capacity that the WT Claim
- JW’s have to put complete trust in a man-made imperfect group of men
- The WT Org admit they have no authority over your salvation
What clearly comes to mind is, if the Bible is the true source of God’s word and this is what the WT themselves believe, then would WT’s claim be clearly evident in scripture and thereby providing the proof required?
So let’s see what the Bible actually says and also what is important here, what it does not say, for completeness
What the Bible says
- The Bible is God’s inspired word. Beneficial for all teaching (2 Timothy 3:16)
- The Bible provides all teachings etc (John 16:13)
- Not to put trust in man, only in Christ (Psalm 146:3)
- Christ is the truth, the way & the Life (John 14:6)
- Christ is the mediator between man & God (1 Timothy 2:5)
- God’s truth never changes (Malachi 3:6)
- Any prophesy made in the name of God but does not come to be, are not from God (Matthew 7:15)
What the Bible does not say
- Put trust in any man when it comes to one’s Faith, including interpretation of the Bible
- Explicitly shows that God appointed an Organisation that is uses on earth for all truth, direction & Life, as the WT claim
- God’s spirit works only works in a few select individuals in order to interpret scripture
As the Bible shows that we can all interpret scripture as a Christian, then that is the proof we need, the only caveat of course is that we have to become a true Christian and this as we know, is by accepting Christ (Ephesians 2:8-10), which in turn allows his spirit to dwell in us, and through his spirit God can reveal his word to us.
Also to bear in mind by reading the Bible on its own we are not influenced by others that at the end of the day are imperfect men and are without any authority to interpret on our behalf.