QUESTION:(Excerpted from a longer comment) …I have to ask you 3 questions to help me evolve further and put my mind to rest, the best it can. Though, I know these questions may be blunt, I trust your maturity and perception as to why I ask….
In your new website front page introductory video (which is very good btw), you made reference that “isnt that the way it is for prophets?” How do you reconcile viewing yourself as a prophet, being given an assignment, when the apostle Paul stated gifts of prophesying would cease, etc ?
I surely understand the difficulty that Jehovah’s Witnesses may have in trying to come to terms with even the mere suggestion that someone outside of Bethel’s inner circle could possibly have any insight into the Scriptures of which they are not also privy.
Indeed, it is considered out of the realm of possibility that Jehovah would use an individual to convey a specific message intended for Jehovah’s Witnesses that is not first filtered through and approved by the Watchtower’s editorial staff.
Jehovah’s Witnesses consider it an act of extreme disloyalty to God to even entertain for a moment anything that originates with a disfellowshipped person, such as myself, let alone the pronouncements of one who is surely viewed by Bethel as a rebel and a mentally diseased apostate.
I personally encountered this mindset years ago (several years before this website came online and before I was disfellowshipped) in a telephone conversation with one of the Governing Body members, who, sadly, is now deceased.
An elder confidant of mine back then who was a former Bethelite, who was quite open to the new ideas that first began rumbling through my head like a runaway freight train, suggested that I call a brother whom he considered to be very approachable and understanding. So, that is why I made a call to Bethel. Perhaps ill-advisedly and even immodestly, I introduced myself as a recently anointed person. (I was a child back then. It was before I was fully immersed in the rough-n-tumble world I am in now as an outsider speaking to power. But I suppose I felt that I had to establish some sort of credentials.) Anyway, in my naiveté I tried reasoning with him on the obvious falsity of the Watchtower’s interpretation of the book of Joel. I appreciated that he graciously received my call and even listened to me up to a point. But his reply was quite telling. He said that if Jehovah wanted the Governing Body to know anything then God will reveal it to them directly and not from someone out in the field who thinks they are anointed.
At the time I felt demeaned and disrespected. His refusal to even consider the possibility that the Watchtower was in error was very puzzling to me and deeply disappointing. After all, the truth is the truth. I had imagined that they were especially receptive to input from other persons who were also anointed. Like I said, I was a child back then.
Keep in mind that up to that point I had been a Society Man through and through. In some respects I was like the apostle Paul before his conversion, when, as Saul the Pharisee, he was more zealous than his contemporaries for the traditions of his forefathers. So, as an elder, I too, was particularly zealous in promoting the Watchtower’s view on this and that. Like most of Jehovah’s Witnesses I felt that my faithfulness to God was predicated upon my obedience to the Society. And like many of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I had great respect for the anointed and particularly the Governing Body. One of my greatest theocratic privileges had been to work in my local field with brother John Barr and brother John Booth when they visited on two separate occasions. Honestly, I stood in awe of those whom I considered to be the “big trees of righteousness” that Jehovah had planted in our midst.
In that respect I could relate to Jeremiah when Jehovah first touched him and commissioned him to be his spokesman. Jeremiah responded that he was just a boy in comparison to the older man of the Jewish establishment.
And yet in spite of my insignificance in relation with those men who are considered pillars within the Watchtower establishment, there is this inescapable fact —call it the elephant in the room —the Watchtower’s interpretation of the prophecy of Joel is absurd. (It is not just Joel, but that is the topic I chose to approach in my brief phone conversation.) Anyone who takes the time to read the brief prophecy of Joel and compares it to what the Watchtower claims it means can see — provided they are not also willfully blind — that the Society’s interpretation cannot possibly be true.
But in accord with the Governing Body member’s response to our conversation and the prevailing mindset at 25 Columbia Heights —and beyond, apparently Jehovah does not want them to see it. Otherwise, he would have revealed his confidential matters to them by someone whom they would accept and not some Joe Blow publisher from Timbuktu or Kalamazoo, or wherever, who presumptuously claims to be anointed and who has the audacity to try to teach them anything.
To be sure, over the course of about 5 years prior to e-watchman coming online, both before and after “the call,” I wrote dozens of letters to the Governing Body and brothers in the Writing Department on a variety of topics. While at first I could not comprehend their lack of receptiveness, now I understand. Jehovah speaks very plainly on the matter. The fact is, he has concealed certain vital matters pertaining to the authentic return of Jesus Christ. And he has done so for a reason. For example, here is a passage from the 29th chapter of Isaiah: “Be stunned and amazed; blind yourselves and be blinded. They are drunk, but not with wine; they are staggering, but not from alcohol. For Jehovah has poured a spirit of deep sleep on you; He has closed your eyes, the prophets, and he has covered your heads, the visionaries.”
From Jehovah’s standpoint those who are the leadership of his people, who use the Bible as their “constitution” —as Goffrey Jackson called it in his sworn testimony before the Australian Royal commission recently —are prophets and visionaries.
Even as Jehovah’s Witnesses know, a prophet is not necessarily one who receives direct messages from God via dreams or visions or by direct communication with an angelic messenger. In post-biblical times those whom Jehovah considers to be prophets and visionaries are those who concern themselves with the inspired messages of the biblical prophets and original visionaries.
And in the context of Isaiah the prophecy itself confirms that those who are called “prophets” and “visionaries” do not receive direct, inspired messages, but merely attempt to understand what has already been written. Isaiah continues: “Every vision becomes for you like the words of a sealed book. When they give it to someone who can read, saying: ‘Read this out loud, please,’ he will say: ‘I cannot, for it is sealed up.’ And when they give the book to someone who cannot read, saying: ‘Read this, please,’ he will say: ‘I cannot read at all.’”
How astoundingly precise God’s word is! The truth is, and this is no exaggeration as I have painstakingly documented that virtually everything the Watchtower teaches as regards the modern-day fulfillment of prophecy is wrong! Or, as the verse above says: “every vision” become like the words of the sealed up book. The prophecy of Joel is just one example. I have written commentaries covering virtually every prophetic book in the Bible exposing the Watchtower’s error.
That may offend many of Jehovah’s Witnesses, but it is the truth. For example, why do you suppose it is that over the past few years not one of Jehovah’s Witnesses has attempted to address even one of the questions I have presented in the article: 30 Questions for the Watchtower and Jehovah’s Witnesses?
Who can deny that the Watchtower has appropriated to itself all authority to interpret Bible prophecies for all of Jehovah’s Witnesses? After all, that is why I was informed by a member of the Governing Body that if Jehovah wanted them to know anything he would reveal it to them from within their inner sanctum of initiates. And because that is their mindset apparently that is the means by which God blinds them.
I have written about these matters from the perspective of prophecy and tried to shed light upon the irony of the fact that those whom God recognizes as his servants, who preach his message, yes, those whom he recognizes as his witnesses, are also blind and deaf to matters pertaining to Jehovah’s judgment that is to be unveiled at the revelation of Jesus Christ. For example, the chapter entitled: Who Is Blind? in Jehovah Himself Has Become King explains this enigma and the purpose for it.
In harmony with the Watchtower’s own understanding that a prophet is not necessarily someone who receives unique messages directly from God, Revelation informs us that the bearing witness to Jesus is what inspires prophesy. And Revelation is all about the coming of Jesus —literally the unveiling of Jesus. And that is long after the time that the apostle Paul indicated that the gifts of prophesying will cease.
So, my work does indeed bear witness to Jesus, but not in the same way that the Watchtower does. While the Watchtower celebrates 100 years of Kingdom rule since Jesus’ enthronement in 1914, my bearing witness has to do with Jesus coming to judge the house of God – something that is completely outside the accepted teaching of the Watchtower. But it is this coming of Jesus about which all the prophets speak. It is those prophets and their prophecies that I have concerned myself with and which I’ve expounded upon in numerous essays and in the book Jehovah Himself Has Become King.
As regards the original prophets, they were outsiders – castaways. Their messages, for the most part, were rejected and ridiculed by the leaders of God’s people. Nonetheless, their words came true. And persons were forced to accept it.
Back in the year 2005 I was disfellowshipped from the organization now known as the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The very last thing I told the judicial committee brothers, as I had my hand on the door ready to leave that particular kingdom hall for the very last time, I said to them, “there’s going to be a third world war.” And then I turned my back and left.
10 years ago that may have seemed like a wild-eyed rant by a mentally unbalanced person. Now, a decade later, it doesn’t seem so crazy. But the irony is, although many people in the world are very concerned that a world war is inevitable, even eminent, Jehovah’s Witnesses – the very people who imagine that have an inside line on the future – are completely oblivious. And this too is what the prophets have foretold.
Now, as regards receiving an assignment to act in the capacity of a prophet, consider the last verse of the 33rd chapter of Ezekiel. As we know, the prophecy is earmarked for fulfillment in the final part of the days. But in regards to that fulfillment the verse says that God’s people will have to know that there had been a prophet in their midst. Since the final part of the days is long after the time that the gifts of prophesying and tongues are to be done away with, how is the presence of a prophet at that particular time to be explained? I shall leave that for you to ponder.
The following two questions will be considered in subsequent Mailbag articles.
2) If Jehovah has chosen to use you in speaking out to warn the WT, (which I’m not denying is plausible), but based on your expressed frustrations of attempting and failing to gain a louder or more impactful platform to be heard, why has He not made you more visible and seen?
I hate asking this latter question because I don’t want you to take it personal or offensive, but i have to express it because this is how I was inculcated to think. So i need to judiciously conclude my reasoning based on facts.
3) If the WT has been in such egregious error before Jehovah purporting a supposed lie of 1914, and willfully doing so….how do we explain Jesus backing and blessing the preaching work of the last 100 years? Honestly, I’ve never understood how we apply Matthew 24:14 over the last 100 yrs. It makes more sense to apply it to a very impactful, swift and compact hard hitting ministry work, say 3.5 yrs. But, if as you state WT has offended Jesus and God over the 1914 debacle, what do you call this last 100 years of JW history? Was it blessed or not? What was its purpose, etc., if the WT is to be damned in a way?