It can be painful and traumatic to come to terms with deliberate deception, especially when it is discovered that the deceit emanates from a person of whom we may be fond, or an institution with which we may be associated.
We see it all the time. People cannot believe their trusted political leaders can be so two-faced and treacherous. Churchgoers simply refuse to consider the possibility that nearly everything they are told by their clergy is a lie. And it is especially hard for Jehovah’s Witnesses to come to grips with the fact that the Watchtower has dealt treacherously with them and has misled them, particularly as regards the supposed return of Jesus Christ in 1914. After all, Jehovah’s Witnesses have the truth. All the error and falsehood exist outside the protective organization. Right?
Now consider the 16th paragraph of the July, 2013 Watchtower:
Fifth, shining brightly. Jesus ends his prophecy by saying: “At that time the righteous ones will shine as brightly as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.”(Matt. 13:43) When and where will that be? The fulfillment of these words still lies ahead. Jesus foretold, not an activity currently taking place on earth, but a future event occurring in heaven. Consider two reasons for this conclusion.
(The asterisk footnote reads: Daniel 12:3 states that “the ones having insight (anointed Christians) will shine like the brightness of the expanse.” While still on earth, they do this by sharing in the preaching work. However, Matthew 13:43 points to the time when they will shine brightly in the heavenly Kingdom. Previously, we thought that both scriptures referred to the same activity—the preaching work.)
Unfortunately, the majority of Jehovah’s Witnesses are probably not aware of what the Watchtower used to teach on these relatively obscure points. And for that reason the Society is emboldened to make rather profound “adjustments” in a very casual and nearly undetectable way. Throughout this issue of the Watchtower, the Society has made a number of adjustments by means of mere footnotes, as if they were relatively unimportant side points.
Hence, as regards the paragraph above it should be noted that both Jesus and the prophet Daniel foretold the sons of the kingdom will shine like the sun in the expanse of heaven, yet the Watchtower makes no connection between the two now – claiming that Daniel’s prophecy has already been fulfilled by the preaching of anointed Jehovah’s Witnesses; whereas, the words of Jesus are now believed to be fulfilled when all the chosen ones are in heaven. The Watchtower is wrong on both counts. But before we examine their error more closely first consider the next paragraph:
First, the “when” question. Jesus said: “At that time the righteous ones will shine.” The phrase “at that time” evidently refers to the event that Jesus had just mentioned, namely, the ‘pitching of the weeds into the fiery furnace.’ That occurs during the final part of the great tribulation. Thus, the ‘shining brightly’ of the anointed must occur at that future time as well. Second, the “where” question. Jesus said that the righteous ones will ‘shine in the kingdom.’ What does that mean? All faithful anointed ones who are still on earth after the initial part of the great tribulation has passed will already have received their final sealing. Then, as indicated in Jesus’ prophecy about the great tribulation, they will be gathered to heaven. (Matt. 24:31) There they will shine “in the kingdom of their Father,” and shortly after the battle of Armageddon, they will share as Jesus’ joyous bride in “the marriage of the Lamb.”—Rev. 19:6-9.
The prophecy of Daniel does not indicate that the phenomenon of shining like the expanse of the heavens is the ordinary preaching of Christians. Anyone who simply reads the prophecy at Daniel 12: 1-3 ought to be able to discern that the “ones having insight will shine like the brightness of the expanse” during the tribulation. In fact, verse three is the concluding verse of the extensive prophecy of the king of the north and south. Here is what the prophecy says in context:
“And during that time Michael will stand up, the great prince who is standing in behalf of the sons of your people. And there will certainly occur a time of distress such as has not been made to occur since there came to be a nation until that time. And during that time your people will escape, every one who is found written down in the book. And there will be many of those asleep in the ground of dust who will wake up, these to indefinitely lasting life and those to reproaches and to indefinitely lasting abhorrence. And the ones having insight will shine like the brightness of the expanse; and those who are bringing the many to righteousness, like the stars to time indefinite, even forever. And as for you, O Daniel, make secret the words and seal up the book, until the time of the end. Many will rove about, and the true knowledge will become abundant.”
Why does the Watchtower fabricate two different meanings for what is clearly the same phenomenon? Because in Daniel those who shine like the brightness of heaven are said to bring the many to righteousness and the Society claims that it is accomplishing this work now. Not only that, but it claims that those having insight are those who are able to discern that Jesus returned in 1914. Here is what they state in their Pay Attention to Daniel’s Prophecy commentary:
“After all, who but the faithful anointed remnant had the insight to discern that Michael, the Great Prince, began standing as King in 1914? By preaching such truths as this—as well as by maintaining Christian conduct—they have been “shining as illuminators” in this spiritually bedarkened world. Concerning them, Jesus prophesied: “At that time the righteous ones will shine as brightly as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.”— Daniel 12:3 even tells us what work would occupy these anointed Christians in the time of the end. They would be “bringing the many to righteousness.” The anointed remnant set about gathering the remaining number of the 144,000 joint heirs of Christ. When that work was completed—evidently by the mid-1930’s—they began gathering the “great crowd” of “other sheep.”’
For one thing, the prophecy of Daniel indicates that Michael does not stand up until such time as the king of the north launches global genocide, or as the prophecy words it: “he will certainly go forth in a great rage in order to annihilate and to devote many to destruction.” It is “during that time” that Michael will stand up. His standing up means he asserts his dominion and power over the last king – completely destroying him.
So, since the “ones having insight” are mentioned in context with the tribulation the prophecy of Daniel and the phenomenon Christ foretold in connection with the harvest are the same thing.
That means that the worldwide work of preaching the good news sponsored by the Watchtower Society is not what brings the many to righteousness. The fact that the Watchtower just can’t seem to get these vital matters clearly into focus is evidence that the leadership of Jehovah’s Witnesses is sorely lacking in insight! The reason being: The book of Daniel is still sealed up, because the time of the end, also known as the conclusion – the harvest – has not begun yet.
The truth of the matter is their lack of insight is the means by which Jehovah keeps the prophecy of Daniel sealed up until such time as the unveiling, also known as the apocalypse or revelation.
Bethel’s deception and lack of insight are evident in another way as well. Returning to Jesus’ parable of the harvest, the Watchtower claims that their shining as brightly as the sun in the kingdom is in reference to their merely being in heaven. But please take note of the fact that Jesus twice referred to the kingdom in his brief parable. As mentioned in a previous blog entry, the July 2013, Watchtower Magazine, offers no commentary whatsoever on what it means that the angels are dispatched to remove all the stumbling blocks and persons doing lawlessness “out from his kingdom.”
Obviously, the kingdom in that context is not in reference to heaven. Or are we to suppose that stumbling blocks and persons doing lawlessness exist in heaven? Let us hope not.
The question thinking Jehovah’s Witnesses ought to consider is this: Is it reasonable that Jesus intended for his hearers to attach two different meanings to the kingdom in the same context? Is not this yet another example of the Watchtower employing what Jehovah condemns in Ezekiel as the use of double-faced divination by the stupid prophets in the intimate company of his people? No wonder Jesus concluded his parable by saying: “At that time the righteous ones will shine as brightly as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let him that has ears listen.” The implication is not everyone has ears to listen.
So what is meant by the righteous ones, or those having insight, who “will shine as brightly as the sun in the kingdom”?
If you are one that has ears to listen and are familiar with the information presented here on e-Watchman you likely realize that my purpose is to build anticipation for the future parousia of Christ. And it has been presented in numerous articles that the real parousia will not be invisible. Jesus is going to reveal himself to the chosen ones, which is what was typified by the Transfiguration. At that point, they are accepted into the kingdom of God and are fully illuminated. Thus, the revealing of the sons of God will be accomplished.
The manifestation of Christ to the chosen ones will be completely outside the auspices of the Watchtower Society and will most certainly render it irrelevant. Indeed, let him that has ears listen!