QUESTION: If the man of lawlessness is operating undetected, even among the chosen ones right within Christ’s congregation, have not the chosen ones already been misled or deceived? After all, only Jehovah and Jesus can spot counterfeit Christians, correct?
Absolutely. This is the point. It is the message I have been hammering on all these years. Jehovah’s Witnesses are under a deluding influence —an operation of error if you prefer. And because they are deluded they cannot sort it out in their minds. That includes anointed persons and the Governing Body.
When looking back from a point in the future it may well be considered the grandest deception ever perpetrated —The 1914 invisible parousia, Kingdom-Came hoax and all that goes with it.
The problem is, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not really make sure of all things and test the inspired expressions as the apostles exhort all Christians to do. They blindly accept what the Watchtower teaches because it is the appointed slave. Evidence and proof have no effect. Nor is scriptural reasoning powerful enough to dislodge the delusion. If the faithful and discreet slave said it, it has to be true. Although Jehovah’s Witnesses may deride the Catholic notion of papal infallibility, the Governing Body has essentially placed itself on the same lofty pulpit.
Regarding the man of lawlessness, doesn’t he show himself to be a god? Being a god is special. We would suppose one who claims to be a god, although presumably clever enough not to declare himself infallible, is capable of implying himself to be.
For example, the notion that the appointed times of the nations ended in 1914 is considered to be the immovable, bedrock cornerstone of the whole thing. The Watchtower implies that only someone filled with the wisdom and spirit of God could possibly decipher the chronological secrets hidden in the Scriptures in order to divine the very year when Christ’s Kingdom is established. Jehovah’s Witnesses feel special because only they understand this wonderful secret. The chronology is, of course, extrapolated from the seven times of Nebuchadnezzar’s madness. However, the 2,520-year chronology only works if you believe Jesus intended his disciples to understand that Jerusalem began to be trampled by the nations back in 607 B.C.E.
If, though, we consider the setting when Jesus spoke about Jerusalem being trampled upon for an appointed time, it ought to be apparent that the apostles wanted to know the future, not the past. A few days before Jesus had arrived at the holy city for the very last time. He wept when he viewed it from afar and spoke of its impending destruction and her children being dashed against the crag. After entering the city and standing in view of Jehovah’s temple he also foretold that the center for true worship would be utterly destroyed —not a stone remaining standing upon another stone.
That must have shocked the apostles. That is why a few days later they approached Jesus as he sat upon the Mount of Olives and they said: “Teacher, when will these things actually be, and what will be the sign when these things are to occur?”
The apostles surely knew Jerusalem had been destroyed centuries before. Obviously, though, the city and the temple had been rebuilt. And they realized that the Messiah had come to the temple. In fact, they were expecting Jesus to become king. True, they knew that the Romans were their political rulers, but there is no reason to believe they imagined Jesus to be saying that the nations were at that time trampling the holy city. On the contrary, when Jesus answered their question he left no doubt that Jerusalem was going to be trampled upon by the nations in the future.
Christ’s words are recorded for us to consider: “However, when you see Jerusalem surrounded by encamped armies, then know that the desolating of her has drawn near. Then let those in Judea begin fleeing to the mountains, let those in the midst of her leave, and let those in the countryside not enter into her, because these are days for meting out justice in order that all the things written may be fulfilled. Woe to the pregnant women and those nursing a baby in those days! For there will be great distress on the land and wrath against this people. And they will fall by the edge of the sword and be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled on by the nations until the appointed times of the nations are fulfilled.”
Since no one in their right mind could read the 21st chapter of Luke and come to the conclusion that the apostles would have understood Jesus to be saying that the trampling of Jerusalem had begun centuries before, why is it that Jehovah’s Witnesses embrace such a nonsensical thing with such fervent belief? Has the passage of time since the first century magically transferred the beginning of the appointed times of the nations back in time to 607? Or, rather, is not the fact that Jehovah’s Witnesses unquestioningly accept such convoluted reasoning proof they are laboring under a powerful delusion?
The delusion that Christ has already come and the Kingdom has been established is as powerful in the minds of Jehovah’s Witnesses as the Trinity is in the minds of Trinitarians. It is near impossible to dislodge a dearly-held error when those who are looked to as religious authorities propound it as sacred truth. The lie that Christ has come will prevail until, well…until Christ comes.
All the things the Watchtower claims have already occurred will then unfold. That means nation warring against nation, food shortages, earthquakes in one place after another and pandemics, are in the future and are certain to take place on a scale far exceeding anything that has happened in the past. The lie will then be fully exposed. Then what? Again, Jesus answers: “Then, too, many will be stumbled and will betray one another and will hate one another. Many false prophets will arise and mislead many; and because of the increasing of lawlessness, the love of the greater number will grow cold. But the one who has endured to the end will be saved.”
The desolation and trampling of Jerusalem during the tribulation has to do with the destruction of what the Watchtower calls “true worship.” It will result in a massive shakeout. Jehovah’s Witnesses will then realize they have been misled. For some that will be too much. Their trust in God will be shattered. They will turn on their former friends and family. Jesus even foretold family members will hand their loved ones over to death. Faithful Christians will be thrown from the synagogues by their former brothers.
However, those with faith will go in an entirely new direction.
Isaiah speaks of that day: “So this error will be for you like a broken wall, like a bulging high wall ready to fall. It will crash suddenly, in an instant. It will be broken like a large potter’s jar, so completely smashed that no fragment among its pieces will be left to rake the fire from the fireplace or to scoop water from a puddle.” For this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel, says: “By returning to me and resting, you will be saved; your strength will be in keeping calm and showing trust. But you were unwilling. Instead, you said: “No, we will flee on horses!” So flee you will. “And on swift horses we will ride!” So those pursuing you will be swift. A thousand will tremble at the threat of one; at the threat of five you will flee until what is left of you is like a mast on the top of a mountain, like a signal pole on a hill. But Jehovah is waiting patiently to show you favor, and he will rise up to show you mercy. For Jehovah is a God of justice. Happy are all those keeping in expectation of him.” —Isaiah 30:13-18
The Watchtower’s 1914 delusion is like the “bulging high wall ready to fall.” Its sudden crash will occur when all the things the Watchtower claims were fulfilled back in 1914, blah, blah, blah, will come upon the world with a bang. Because God’s people are so headstrong and stubborn Jehovah has to allow them to be driven into a state of helplessness and despair —as if standing alone and naked on top of a pole on a mountain —exposed for all to see their pitiful plight. That is when God will finally command our attention, as the prophecy goes on to reveal: “When the people dwell in Zion, in Jerusalem, you will by no means weep. He will surely show you favor at the sound of your cry for help; he will answer you as soon as he hears it. Though Jehovah will give you bread in the form of distress and water in the form of oppression, your Grand Instructor will no longer hide himself, and you will see your Grand Instructor with your own eyes. And your own ears will hear a word behind you saying, “This is the way. Walk in it,” in case you should go to the right or in case you should go to the left.”
The Governing Body has stated that we figuratively hear the words of our Grand Instructor as if coming from behind us by simply reading the Bible since according to the inebriates of Bethel, the Bible was written a long time ago —behind us in time as it were. Amazingly, Jehovah’s Witnesses unquestionably accept such tripe and declare it to be the finest spiritual food to be had. [pullquote] Jehovah is the “Grand Instructor.” He has no equal as a teacher. How, though, can people ‘see’ and “hear” him? Jehovah reveals himself through his prophets, whose words are recorded in the Bible. Today, when faithful worshipers read the Bible, it is as if God’s fatherly voice is telling them the way to go and urging them to readjust their course of conduct so as to walk in it. Each Christian should listen carefully as Jehovah speaks through the pages of the Bible and through Bible-based publications provided by “the faithful and discreet slave.” Isaiah’s Prophecy (paragraph 18) [/pullquote]However, anyone not under the deluding influence can clearly see that the word that comes as if from behind is spoken at a specific point in time —when those dwelling in Jerusalem are in distress and under oppression. In other words, during the tribulation —when, as Jesus foretold, the nations will trample Jerusalem for an appointed time. Surely, that will be a time of distress and oppression.
Hearing God speak a word as if from behind indicates that those to whom he is speaking are going the wrong way. The Grand Instructor is willing to offer corrective instruction at a critical time.
In reality, Jesus will be the “Wonderful Counselor” who comes to save God’s people when they are lost. That will be the revelation of Jesus —the manifestation and presence. That is why the passage above states “your Grand Instructor will no longer hide himself, and you will see your Grand Instructor with your own eyes.” The Watchtower’s invisible parousia delusion has served to hide Jehovah, as it were. Of course, no man can literally see God and survive the sight. But Jesus, being the exact representation of his Father and coming in great glory, will manifest himself to the chosen ones then. In that way “you will see your Grand Instructor with your own eyes,” or, as John explained: “Beloved ones, we are now children of God, but it has not yet been made manifest what we will be. We do know that when he is made manifest we will be like him, because we will see him just as he is.” —1 John 3:2
The manifestation of Jesus will also bring to nothing the man of lawlessness. The delusion will have served God’s purpose and Christ will prevail —destroying all of his enemies and completely routing the Devil.