Tuesday, June 30
Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, but a good word cheers it up. —Prov. 12:25.
Paul showed that even one who has the responsibility of encouraging others needs to be built up himself. To Christians living in Rome, he wrote: “I am longing to see you, that I may impart some spiritual gift to you for you to be made firm; or, rather, that we may have an interchange of encouragement by one another’s faith, both yours and mine.” (Rom. 1:11, 12) Yes, Paul, who gave outstanding encouragement to others, at times needed to be built up himself. (Rom. 15:30-32) Those who live a life of self-sacrifice should be commended. Brothers and sisters who remain single because they want to obey the admonition to marry “only in the Lord” make up another group that merits encouragement. (1 Cor. 7:39) Also, Christians who remain faithful through persecution or illness need to hear encouragement. —2 Thess. 1:3-5. w18.04 21 ¶3-5
The text is based on an article that cites Hebrews 10:24-25, which exhorts Christians to encourage one another “and all the more so as you see the day drawing near.” The Watchtower then states: “Today, we have every reason to believe that the “great and very awe-inspiring” day of Jehovah is near.”
Although I certainly believe the day of Jehovah is near since the article states that “we have every reason to believe” we might naturally wonder what some of those reasons are. The Watchtower does not say.
World war is definitely a possibility. In fact, certain influential institutions are making a determined effort to push the nuclear-armed nations into war. There are numerous flashpoints around the world that could easily ignite a global conflagration. In spite of the present alarming state of affairs, the Watchtower doesn’t concern itself with any of that. The reason being, according to the seers of Bethel, there cannot be another world war because WWI was the fulfillment of the prophecies. A third world war would simply be too destructive. Here is what the seers said in 1997:
Second, in this century some features of Jesus’ sign are being fulfilled in what we might call the ultimate degree. For example, is there any room for wars to become much worse than they have been since 1914? If there was a World War III, with all of today’s nuclear powers deploying their weapons, the aftermath would likely find this earth a charred waste—and mankind as extinct as the dodo. Similarly, Revelation 11:18 foretold that in these days when the nations are “wrathful,” mankind would be “ruining the earth.” For the first time in history, pollution and degradation of the environment now threaten the very habitability of this planet! So this feature too is seeing fulfillment in or near its ultimate degree. Could wars and pollution simply continue to worsen until man has destroyed himself and this planet? No; for the Bible itself decrees that the earth will last forever, with righthearted humans living upon it. (Are These Really the Last Days?– WT 4-1-97)
According to the watchman class, there is no room for wars much worse than WWI. The absurdity of the Watchtower’s statement should be apparent to everyone who has ever read the words of Jesus Christ when he spoke of a great tribulation that is destined to come upon the entire inhabited earth. Jesus went on to say that the global holocaust would be so severe it would require divine intervention to cut it short, or else no one would survive. In other words, if God did not step in mankind would become extinct.
Even though Jehovah’s Witnesses are familiar with Jesus’ prophesy apparently they do not get the sense of it. The Watchtower repeatedly proclaims that the great tribulation will begin when the United Nations liquidates false religion. For the past 20 years, I have challenged the visionaries of Bethel to provide scriptural support for their position. They have refused. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not need any scriptural backing. The “slave” has spoken.
Okay, but if the world’s greatest time of trouble is simply a governmental ban of religion why will it be necessary for Jehovah God to intervene to prevent mankind from being effaced from the earth? None of Jehovah’s Witnesses can answer that simple question.
The truth is, God’s Kingdom is not ruling. Jesus did not return and take up Kingdom power in 1914. Satan has not been cast down. World War One was not the fulfillment of the sign. These are not the last days.
However, the Watchtower is right about one thing— the day of Jehovah is near. In the immediate future, we are going to witness the world erupt into war. The global financial system is going to crash. There are going to be food shortages and pandemics, far worse than the Coronavirus. The Watchtower is going to get its day of Jehovah alright. That is why Jehovah states in prophecy: “Woe to those who yearn for the day of Jehovah! What, then, will the day of Jehovah mean for you? It will be darkness, and not light. It will be like a man who flees from a lion and is confronted by a bear, and when he enters his house and leans his hand against the wall, a snake bites him. Will not the day of Jehovah be darkness, and not light; will it not have gloom, and not brightness?” — Amos 5:18-20