Thursday, May 25
All the things that were written beforehand were written for our instruction.—Rom. 15:4.
Imagine the following scenes that reveal Elijah’s implicit trust in Jehovah. When Elijah informed King Ahab of Jehovah’s intention to bring about a drought, he confidently declared: “As surely as Jehovah . . . is living, . . . there will be no dew or rain except by my word!” (1 Ki. 17:1) Elijah believed that Jehovah would supply what was needed for him and for others during the drought. (1 Ki. 17:4, 5, 13, 14) He expressed confidence that Jehovah could raise a child from the dead. (1 Ki. 17:21) He had no doubt that Jehovah would send fire to consume his sacrifice on Mount Carmel. (1 Ki. 18:24, 37) When Jehovah’s time came to end the drought, even before there was any sign of rain, Elijah told Ahab: “Go up, eat and drink, for there is the sound of a heavy downpour.” (1 Ki. 18:41) Do not such accounts make us examine ourselves to see if our faith is that strong?
The writers at the Watchtower seem not to realize that Jehovah personally spoke to Elijah and told him of the coming drought. (likely through an angel) Jehovah told Elijah he would provide for him in the wilderness by means of raven caterers. Jehovah told him to go to Sidon because he commanded a widow there to supply him food. And Jehovah told Elijah to present himself to Ahab because he was going to end the drought. Elijah even experienced a supernatural demonstration of Jehovah’s power and was fed cake by a materialized angel. (The original angel food cake!)
Quite likely if God personally spoke to us and told us of the things to come we would believe it. Obviously God has not spoken in such a way to anyone in modern times. At least not yet.
It is unfortunate that the Watchtower treats Jehovah’s Witnesses like kindergarteners. It didn’t use to be that way. Perhaps it is simply part of the overall dumbing down process the Western world has been subjected to over the last few decades. But there is a definite trend over the past 10 years or so, where the Watchtower reduces prophecy and prophets into goody-goody behavioral lessons. In any case, fortunately, or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, it is not going to persist much longer.
On the one hand the Watchtower claims to be the mouthpiece of God, as was Elijah. In fact, the Watchtower claims that the two witnesses of Revelation —symbolized as Moses and Elijah in the transfiguration —were symbolically killed back in 1918! On the other hand, as visionaries Bethel is remarkably blind. (More on Elijah and the two witnesses)
By definition, visionaries and seers are able to discern the future. Certainly, the biblical prophets did that very thing. And their inspired writings are the basis for our knowing the things to come.
Since virtually all prophecy relates to Christ in some way —and most assuredly, the second coming of Jesus Christ will be the most profound and impactful event ever, the two witnesses of Revelation must be witnesses of the presence of Christ —literally seeing him when he comes alongside to minister to them, as Jesus explained in an illustrative way in the 12th chapter of Luke, when he said to his little flock: “Be dressed and ready and have your lamps burning, and you should be like men waiting for their master to return from the marriage, so when he comes and knocks, they may at once open to him. Happy are those slaves whom the master on coming finds watching! Truly I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at the table and will come alongside and minister to them.”
As of 2013 the Governing Body has come around to the notion that the master did not come to punish and reward his slaves back in 1918. Yet, in spite of now expecting a future coming of the master Jehovah’s Witnesses are still laboring under the delusion that Christ has come alongside his slaves and ministered to them, which is what the Greek word “parousia” means —to come alongside.
Of course, the delusion persists due to the deeply entrenched notion that World War One was the fulfillment of prophecy. As for the possibility of a third world war the seers of Bethel have said they don’t know. Here is a direct quote from an AWAKE article in 2009:
Could a third world war begin by accident? Could statesmen and their military advisers grossly miscalculate risks and cause the loss of millions of lives? We do not know. But we do know that this very thing has occurred. A century ago, European leaders launched their nations into the Great War, later called World War I, unaware of the magnitude of the horrors to come.
It truly is astounding that the self-aggrandizing prophet class doesn’t know what the future holds. Yet, here we are in the year 2017, with numerous simmering hotspots around the world one blunder away from engulfing the nations in a conflagration that could very quickly dwarf the horrors of both previous world wars.
The stage is now set.
“So you will stumble in broad daylight, and the prophet will stumble with you, as if it were night. And I will silence your mother. My people will be silenced, because there is no knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from serving as my priest; and because you have forgotten the law of your God, I myself will forget your sons.” —Hosea 4:5-6