Sunday, September 5
Stop being molded by this system of things. —Rom. 12:2.
Paul was concerned because some Christians were apparently being influenced by the unwholesome reasonings and philosophies promoted by Satan’s world. (Eph. 4:17-19) That can happen to any one of us. In a desperate attempt to turn us away from Jehovah, Satan, the god of this system of things, uses various tactics. One of them is that of exploiting any tendency we may have toward selfish ambition or self-promotion. He may even use certain aspects of our background, our culture, or our education to bring us over to his way of thinking. Is it possible for us to root out things that are “strongly entrenched” in our minds? (2 Cor. 10:4) Notice how Paul answers: “We are overturning reasonings and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are bringing every thought into captivity to make it obedient to the Christ.” (2 Cor. 10:5) Yes, with Jehovah’s help we can actually gain control over wrong reasonings. w19.06 8 ¶1-3
In the book, Art of War Sun Tzu stated: “All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.”
Satan cleverly uses these deceptive tactics. Over and over Jehovah’s Witnesses are told that the Devil is lurking out in the world, which of course he obviously is, but it is implied that the wicked one is far away from the safe confines of spiritual paradise. The Devil makes it appear as if he is powerless to penetrate the theocratic fortress. In reality, Satan is much nearer and far more influential than he appears.
One defect inherent in sinful humans is the tendency of idolatry. On the one hand, Jehovah’s Witnesses have put the idols of Christendom far away. Yet, gradually the Watchtower and its Governing Body have become subtle objects of veneration. Has the Governing Body ever cautioned the flock not to place too much importance on the earthly organization? Never. Just the opposite, in fact. At every opportunity, the organization is praised as the virtually infallible mouthpiece of God—the city on the hill shining like a beacon. It is considered tantamount to blasphemy to doubt or question the correctness of the Governing Body.
I know I have related this before, but about 20 years ago I visited my old congregation in Houston, Texas. This was before I started up this website. Apparently, though, the gossip was that brother King was not in line with the WT. During the song when everyone was standing a sister in the row in front of me whom I knew was pretending to be speaking to someone next to her, but she turned sideways and spoke loudly enough so I could hear her rebuke. In her indignation, she snarled something to the effect that ‘questioning the Watchtower was like questioning Jehovah himself.’
You can multiply that attitude by many millions of devout JW’s. The folly of that thinking is, unlike the Watchtower, Jehovah has demonstrated that he is lowly and humble and allows himself to be questioned. God is secure in His position. He is not afraid of being found out. And when on earth Jesus allowed himself to be questioned too, even by his most ardent enemies.
On the other hand, idols require constant maintenance. That is because devotees impute powers to the idol that it simply does not possess. This is most applicable to the Watchtower. For example, if one of Jehovah’s Witnesses writes to the Watchtower questioning their policies or teaching, the standard practice is for Bethel to notify the local elders or even the circuit overseer with instructions to deal with the brother or sister. The issue is not addressed, only the person who dares challenge the idol is dealt with.
It is acknowledged that humans lack the ability to foresee the future. Jehovah, though, is wise and all-knowing. The Watchtower does not claim to be inspired. However, it is assumed that God always guides it, that God uses it to channel the truth to those receptive to it. Hence, to question the channel is regarded as blasphemy.
Throughout the Bible, God inspired men to prophesy—to reveal the things that only God knows. One such prophet was a man named Balaam. God had spoken to him on several occasions. He was recognized as a man of God. Balak the king of Moab hired Balaam to conjure up a curse upon the camp of the Israelites. It didn’t work. God would not allow it. But Balaam wanted the reward he had been offered so he revealed to the king of Moab how he could lure the Israelites into committing idolatry and fornication and then Jehovah would act against them. How devilish! And it worked.
Balaam is a type. Jesus warned the Pergamum congregation in Revelation that there was a Balaam in their midst who was misleading Christ’s slaves. Jude warned Christians of the presence of a group of men like Balaam who were false teachers, who deceptively lurked among Christians like rocks below the water. The apostle Peter also spoke of the evil influence of a Balaam.
The idol has convinced Jehovah’s Witnesses that Christ has invisibly returned, that he has already begun ruling the world, that Satan has already been cast down, pure worship has been established—at last! Yes, this idol speaks!
It is not possible to overturn these strongly entrenched falsehoods from the minds of Jehovah’s Witnesses. The spell of the idol is too powerful. But, to demonstrate that the invisible parousia doctrine is a hoax consider one simple verse: “So now, little children, remain in union with him, so that when he is made manifest we may have freeness of speech and not shrink away from him in shame at his presence.” — 1 John 2:28
Has Christ been made manifest? Even the Watchtower says no. Has anyone been shamed away from Christ’s presence at any time over the course of these past 107 years? Of course not. Does the apostle reveal that the manifestation and the presence are the same? Absolutely. Why then do Jehovah’s Witnesses not accept this simple, undeniable truth? Because the idol hath spoken.
Speaking to his earthly organization in the 48th chapter of Isaiah Jehovah reveals His intentions to discredit the idol, the idol that the idolators claim can reveal the hidden things of the future. But the idol is impotent. God explains: “From now on I am announcing new things to you, guarded secrets that you have not known. Only now are they being created, and not long ago, things that you never heard before today, so that you cannot say, ‘Look! I already know them.’ No, you have not heard, you have not known, and in the past your ears were not opened. For I know that you are very treacherous, and you have been called a transgressor from birth.”
When will God reveal his guarded secrets? When Christ is made manifest—when his presence begins. It is as if Jehovah’s Witnesses have never heard of such a thing before. Obviously, when Christ commences his parousia no one who speaks for the Watchtower will be able to claim they already knew it. The idol will be speechless.
Now that the idol has channeled a vaccine mandate it is as if the Watchtower has approved of a human sacrifice so that all of its devotees may maintain precious unity. It remains to be seen how many will be killed on the Watchtower’s altar of pure worship.
There is no doubt Satan is an expert in the art of war. Jehovah’s Witnesses have been deluded into imagining he is far away. In reality, he is very, very near.