Thursday, August 31
Jehovah knows those who belong to him.—2 Tim. 2:19.
In recent years, we have seen an increase in the number of those partaking at the Memorial of Christ’s death. That trend contrasts with the decrease in the number of partakers that we saw for many decades. Should this increase trouble us? No. Let us consider some key factors to keep in mind. Those taking the count at the Memorial cannot judge who truly have the heavenly hope. The number of partakers includes those who mistakenly think that they are anointed. Some who at one point started to partake of the emblems later stopped. Others may have mental or emotional problems that lead them to believe that they will rule with Christ in heaven. Therefore, the number of partakers does not accurately indicate the number of anointed ones left on earth. And the Bible does not state how many will be left at the time that the great tribulation begins.
There is another factor to consider as well: some anointed persons do not partake publicly. Due to the stigma of being a newly anointed person or youthful, or other factors, some choose not to partake at the kingdom hall. And sometimes the attendants taking count do make judgments as to who is anointed and who isn’t. So, the figures the Watchtower publishes cannot be a reliable count.
In any case, it really does underscore the importance of the biblical text: Jehovah surely knows those who belong to him. Ultimately, those who belong to God and Christ are hidden at the present time anyway, until such time as occurs the phenomenon known as the revealing of the sons of God. Paul spoke of the unveiling not only in the eighth chapter of Romans, but at Colossians 3:3-4 as well, where he wrote: “For you died, and your life has been hidden with the Christ in union with God. When the Christ, our life, is made manifest, then you also will be made manifest with him in glory.”
It is worth noting that for all of the Watchtower’s focus on the parousia, supposedly an invisible presence of Christ that has been ongoing over the past 103 years, very little is ever said about the manifestation and revealing of Christ and his fellow sons of God —Jesus’ brothers. (See chapter called The Parousia)
The words manifest and manifestation are drawn from the Greek word —Epiphaneia. It literally means an “appearance.” The Greek Scriptures refer to Jesus being manifest in the flesh when he was a man and also his post-resurrection manifestations to his disciples. However, epiphaneia also carries the connotation of “brightness”—suggesting a glorious, brilliant appearance. (Strong’s Concordance – Epiphaneia) And to be sure, the manifestation of Christ is directly linked to his presence, his parousia. To underscore that connection at 2 Thessalonians 2:8 Paul wrote of the “the manifestation of his presence”—alternatively translated as “the brightness of his coming” in the King James Version.
The fact of the matter is, while the Watchtower Society has been instrumental in equipping and organizing Christians —whether anointed or not —so as to accomplish the ministry that Christ commissioned his disciples to undertake, conversely, the Watchtower has also played a crucial role in concealing the truth regarding the future presence and manifestation of Christ. It is no understatement to say that virtually everything the Watchtower teaches as regards prophecy is wrong. The future unveiling of Christ along with those presently hidden in him will reveal all that is concealed, which is when the true sons will shine as brightly as the sun in the Kingdom of their Father.
As regards the Watchtower’s statement that “the Bible does not state how many will be left at the time that the great tribulation begins” —this is wrong too. The Scriptures do reveal such. The Governing Body and their fellow travelers are simply blind. (Who Is Blind?)
The sacred secret concealed in plain sight is that there are 7,000 who will be on hand after the beast is unleashed. Not only are they anointed, but at that time they will have been sealed, which concludes Christianity insofar as the gathering of all 144,000 Kingdom heirs will have been accomplished. Did not Paul indicate that the evening meal will only be observed until he arrives? Hence, the conclusion of the system relates not merely to the end of Satan’s wicked system, but the Christian system as well.
Of course, as with the rest of Revelation, the Watchtower has rendered the 7,000 who are killed by the great earthquake into meaningless drivel. Supposedly, the 7,000 who are killed were Bible Students who requested to have their names removed from church membership registries. They died symbolically in relation to their previous religious affiliation. I am serious. This is the sort of nonsense the Watchtower published in the most recent commentary on Revelation.
Here is an e-watchman article on the significance of the 7,000 who are killed.