The Second Coming of Jesus Christ

//The Second Coming of Jesus Christ

The “second coming” of Jesus Christ is a commonly used expression, especially among various Adventists groups, LDS and the many evangelical sects. Catholics, Orthodox, Methodist, etc, not so much.

Oddly, though, the phrase “second coming of Christ” does not resonant with Jehovah’s Witnesses at all. And there is a very good reason why that is so. It is because Jehovah’s Witnesses believe the second coming has already occurred —although many JW’s may not even realize it. But it is true. The Watchtower has essentially rendered the epic second coming of Jesus into a non-event. In case you missed it, it occurred in 1914.

If you doubt that to be true, here are a few references from Watchtower literature over the years.

IN THE year 1879 it became evident which of the many early voices announcing Christ’s second coming were being chosen by Jehovah to be united in action as his witnesses. Now, 75 years later, it clearly appears that in those early days Jehovah’s hand was upon the small Pittsburgh (Pa.) Bible group under C. T. Russell’s chairmanship. For the eight years prior to 1879 these “layman” students of the Bible had gained much experience as to right Christian doctrine, prophetic time, and in preaching to the public as well as in printing their new-found truths. —WT 1/15/55

According to this excerpt from a 1955 Watchtower the Bible Students were chosen by Jehovah to announce Christ’s second coming. As far as having experience in “prophetic time,” the article fails to mention that the Bible Students originally believed the second coming took place in 1874, invisibly of course. No matter. 

The book God’s Kingdom has Approached (1973) quotes from a previously published article in the 40’s, stating:

Messiah, the Son of man, came into Kingdom power A.D. 1914 and . . . this constitutes his second coming and the beginning of his second parousía or presence.”

So, there you have it. Christ’s second coming took place in 1914 —not 1874. Whatever. Most telling, though, is that in more recent years the Watchtower does not refer to the second coming as taking place in 1914. The phrase has been phased out. In fact, there is no mention of it at all except in the context of referencing what others erroneously believe about the second coming. For instance, doing a search on the WT’s CD ROM and the JW Library Online, one has to go all the way back to 1985 to find the last reference to the second coming as having taken place in 1914. Here is that is stated in the February 1st, 1985 WT:

People of this 20th-century generation who do not desire or believe in the second coming of Jesus Christ do not read aright the “sign” of this system’s end.

Of course, according to the Watchtower the “sign” of Jesus’ second coming appeared in 1914. But if that is true, if the monumental second coming of the Lord took place over 100 years ago, why do not Jehovah’s Witnesses use that expression? Should it not be shouted from the rooftops that the Lord’s second coming has been a reality these past 103 years? For example, why have we never seen a poster heralding the second coming of Christ in 1914 on a JW info cart? Indeed, why has the Watchtower all but erased that phrase from their theocratic pure lingo?

The reason should be obvious. The Watchtower no longer wishes to tout 1914 as the date for the second coming because the Governing Body knows it would appear ridiculous. Quite likely even many of Jehovah’s Witnesses would begin to grasp the absurdity of the Watchtower’s 1914 invisible return doctrine.

Contradictorily, though, while quietly retaining 1914 as the year of the second coming the Watchtower also preaches that Jesus is still coming. Here is a link to a recent article on JW.org on the future coming of Jesus. But if we take all things into consideration, at least in terms of what Jehovah’s Witnesses believe, a future coming of Jesus would constitute a third coming. To underscore the dishonesty involved, about 20 years ago the WT reset the separation of the sheep and the goats to a point in the future. (Previously the WT taught that the sheep and the goats were being separated by their response to the preaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses.) However, in the article linked to above the Society cites Jesus’ parable:

The Scriptures make dozens of references to the future time when Christ comes to judge the people of the earth. For example, Matthew 25:31-33 says: “When the Son of man [Jesus Christ] comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit down on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left.”

The Bible does indeed make dozens of references to the future time when Christ comes to render judgment. It boggles the mind, but the Governing Body actually teaches that although Jesus’ second coming was supposedly accomplished in 1914 and it was then that the Lord took up his awesome Kingdom power, sitting down on his heavenly throne, he is coming again in the future to also sit down on his glorious throne to judge the sheep and goats. Clearly, there is some interpretive fraud involved here.

The Watchtower’s deceit is even more apparent when we consider their latest adjustment in understanding. After decades of teaching that Jesus appointed the faithful slave over all of his belongings back in 1919, in 2013 the Watchtower flipped it to the future. (I wrote a series of articles on this subject in Watchtower Review.) But they seem oblivious to the fact that the reward and punishment of the faithful and unfaithful slaves is precisely what occurs at the beginning of the second coming of Christ. Does not judgment begin with the house of God first? And did the master not appoint a slave to feed the domestic servants of his house?

The fraud of the second coming in 1914 is evident in light of the fact that Jesus was explicit in connecting the judgment of his anointed slave with his second coming. For example, in the context immediately preceding his illustration of the faithful and wicked slaves Jesus said: “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. And if he comes in the second watch, even if in the third, and finds them ready, happy are they! But know this, if the householder had known at what hour the thief would come, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also, keep ready, because at an hour that you do not think likely, the Son of man is coming.”

Within the short span of verses above the words “come” and “coming” appear six times. Please notice, too, that the coming of the Son of man is not in connection with the judgment of the sheep and the goats. Jesus is coming again to call his anointed slaves to account. To be sure, if Jesus exhorts his slaves to be ready for the “return” of the master, is that not a reference to the second coming? If Jesus returned in 1914 then that is when the slaves would have been called to account. But since the Watchtower now teaches that the master’s return is in the future, how is it that his second coming took place in 1914?

A similar sort of misrepresentation is employed regarding the third chapter of Malachi. That prophecy also refers to the coming of Christ —the messenger of the covenant. It states: “Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will clear up a way before me. And suddenly the true Lord, whom you are seeking, will come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant will come, in whom you take delight. Look! He will certainly come,” says Jehovah of armies. But who will endure the day of his coming, and who will be able to stand when he appears? For he will be like the fire of a refiner and like the lye of laundrymen.”

The Watchtower has, of course, provided an answer to the rhetorical question of who will endure the day of his coming. Judge Rutherford and the International Bible Students did! In fact, those Bible Students were able to stand before Christ when he appeared, invisibly! Unfortunately, although they were apparently refined in the fire they have long since died off. And although Jesus came back then and judged them, he is coming once more to do it all over again! Such are the absurdities and contradictions inherent in the Watchtower’s bogus invisible second coming of Jesus Christ.

To be sure, the second coming of Christ cannot be so easily ignored. Appropriately, the first casualty of Jesus’ fiery return will be the Watchtower’s sacred 1914 hoax. 

2017-11-08T05:56:13+00:00 August 25th, 2017|Page Two|23 Comments
  • Cathii D’Anthonii

    So convoluted…. It took me along time to even understand the 7 times in Daniel and how they arrived at 1914..its a relief to toss it out….

    • Craig Knight

      Yeah a lot of us struggled to figure out all the WT’s goofy mind numbing chronology. I’m with you on tossing that in the trash where it belongs!

    • e.v.g

      When the watchtower book about the prophecies of Daniel came a few years ago, it was tangled and difficult to understand, the palmira queen or whatever had nothing to do with God’s purpose. It will be very embarrasing for the watchtower if they continue teaching such stupidity.

      • Easach L S of Coimbatore

        That’s exactly right just read my comments. I think you will get some points.

      • Cathii D’Anthonii

        The only part of that book I use are the charts and the succession of the world powers in the back, most of all the other publications found themselves ousted.

  • Craig Knight

    I think if the WT guru’s would just apologize for their 1914 1919 garbage like the World Wide Church Of God did for all Armstrong’s error’s that would at least show some humbleness on their part. But we all know WT is too arrogant for that, Here’s how the WWCOG apologized:

    The Holy Spirit is working today in the body of Christ to heal historic wounds and restore good relations between offenders and offended. It is my painful responsibility to acknowledge that the Worldwide Church of God has been among the offenders.

    Our flawed doctrinal understanding clouded the plain gospel of Jesus Christ and led to a variety of wrong conclusions and unscriptural practices. We have much to repent of and apologize for.

    We were judgmental and self-righteous—condemning other Christians, calling them “so-called Christians” and labeling them “deceived” and “instruments of Satan.”

    We imposed on our members a works-oriented approach to Christian living. We required adherence to burdensome regulations of the Old Testament code. We exercised a strongly legalistic approach to church government.

    Our former old covenant approach fostered attitudes of exclusivism and superiority rather than the new covenant teaching of brotherhood and unity.

    • Revv_zone@gmail.com Please8834

      too bad they won’t recant their False Hellfire Doctrine

      • Craig Knight

        Yeah that and probably the trinity too! Ha ha! I guess they are not gone apologizing yet!!!

        • Cathii D’Anthonii

          Everything comes down to intent, doesn’t it? We know individuals will be judged, therefore maybe theres a small chance some these religious leaders may come to their senses, especially some with theology degrees should know what the Bible says..We’ve only been going door to door some 100 years now declaring Jehovahs name…one can only hope.

          • Cathii D’Anthonii

            I’m really thankful for this extra research Br. king did, though, because now I know that the WT has truly backed off printing about 1914, and we have a record of it..Since I seem to be short on technology

            • Cathii D’Anthonii

              Also, the art-work for this essay is stunning…. One could stare at it for hours. .

    • Easach L S of Coimbatore

      You mean to say that something is going on in Bethel to ditch out 1914 and 1919 teaching?

      • Cathii D’Anthonii

        No, I’m just saying it’s easier to teach the truth when 1914 isn’t on the front page. Of course Thessalonians says it’s the teahung of the man of lawlessness.

        • Easach L S of Coimbatore

          But see https://www.jw.org/en/bible-teachings/questions/jesus-coming/ no 1914 is mentioned there. Also I request you to see my comments and just give me the feed back is my thinking is correct. Well I put lot of points there.

          • Cathii D’Anthonii

            Basaj. Of India. It’s good what you wrote and very true, and I would like to use it. Thank you! You are right, if the government’s and powers are not hiding under rocks, how can they say Christ already came?_good teaching point .

            • Easach L S of Coimbatore

              Yeah you got it? Yes I am same Basavaraj of North Karnataka now in Coimbatore with my real name as Easach in Kannada/Tamil/ all Indian languages refers to Isaac of Bible. easajw@gmail.com

      • Craig Knight

        Yeah I think you have it right from your comments to Cathii.

    • The Raven

      Oh man. I remember getting their pamphlets all the time. I had a stack of them but had just as much difficulty figuring them out as I did the literature from the kh. Late seventies, early eighties. Looks like they had many of the same requirements as the wto did for service.

      • Craig Knight

        Ha ha! Yeah I used to see Armstrong’s stuff at the laundromat and other such exciting places. I always thought their art work was exactly like the WT or maybe WT stole the ideas from Armstrong’s artist.

  • Easach L S of Coimbatore

    Very nicely written article. If we see in the light of WTS that second coming took place I see nothing great happened.

    See the 1st World war is not of Christ but the works of illuminates to establish to change the system of the then ruling world and to establish ultimately the one world government or NWO. See by bringing America into the World war with the side of British, they could able to get the Balfour declaration signed to establish the the State of Israel first. Second world war is to establish United Nations. Third world war is to destroy Russia, China and its allies (North Korea, Iran) as well as Islam and ultimately weaken the Arab nations, so that Israel can gain the domination in Middle east.

    If Christ would have come back in 1914, how can new nations became independent such as Afghanistan in 1919, Iraq in 1932, Indonesia in 1945, India and Pakistan in 1947, Burma and Sri Lanka in 1948, Bangladesh 1971 just to name a few.

    Since Christ is a very powerful person when he comes into the power it will be like a male lion entered into a locked Shopping mall. What will happen people will flee hither and thither. Similarly if Christ comes not even one single human government will rule with stability. But look even after 1914 why even after 1945, the nations continued to get much freedom from their Imperial Lords such as British empire as mentioned above and now for example in India people are just bothered and some get drunk and fall on the street and sleep (least bothered life style) where is the seriousness!!?

    Also in India in Tamil Nadu (well my place is Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu) we get rice in ration at free of cost, Government of Tamil Nadu provides table fan, portable flour grinding machine, CRT color TV at free of cost to all the people irrespective of their status.

    Please refer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amma_Unavagam
    In Tamil Nadu Amma Unavagam (Tamil: அம்மா உணவகம்) is a food subsidization program run by the Government of Tamil Nadu in India. Under the scheme, municipal corporations of the state run canteens serving subsidized food at low prices. The food chains primarily serve South Indian food including idli, saambar rice, curd rice, pongal, lemon rice, curry leaf rice and also chappathi. The dishes are offered at low prices
    Rs 1($ 0.015) for an idli,
    Rs 5 ($ 0.078) for a plate of sambar rice,
    Rs 5 ($ 0.078)for a plate of “Karuvapellai Satham” (Curry leaves rice = Natural Iron mineral loaded food good for girls).
    Rs 3($0.046) for a plate of curd rice.
    If you have just 15 Rs ($ 0.23) you get them all.

    So where is the famine? Where is the food shortages?
    Even a beggar can afford these things as a beggar can earn minimum Rs 500 (=$7.82) /day outside a Railway station in India.

    But see the description in Revelation chapter 6:14-17:

    And the heaven departed as a scroll that is being rolled up, = Satan’s position being removed that is why here it says the heaven in singular terms not heavens. So what is the result?

    and every mountain and every island was removed from its place. = all major (mountain) and minor (island) and every type of governments being removed by Christ. So what?

    Then the kings of the earth, the high officials, the military commanders, the rich, the strong, every slave, and every free person hid in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. = The Presidents/ Prime ministers of the nations (Kings) as well as the industrialists and dependent bankers (rich) as well as even the common people will go and ask help from their defunct governments. What they will say?

    And they keep saying to the mountains and to the rocks: “Fall over us and hide us from the face of the One seated on the throne+ and from the wrath of the Lamb,= Do something for us by protecting over us (Fall over us and hide us) Why? because the condition becomes very worse because the great day of their wrath has come,

    and they cannot able to stand before Christ second comming.

    So if Christ has already come in 1914 it will not be like a least bothered life style as it is now in Tamil Nadu.

    So Christ did not come in 1914 he is yet to come. I will boldly use the term the Second coming of Christ.

  • Burt Reynolds

    If the watchtower recanted on 1914, it would have to retract on its ‘understanding’ of the generations. It is easy to see that if these two underpinning teachings were binned, there would be nothing left for the watchtower to base its remit on as THE herald of Christ’s kingdom. They do not know any other ‘truths’ to promulgate in their place and even if they offered such, few would do so without question this time. There would no longer be an expectation. Nothing concrete to prepare for, just a suggestion that the end might be near. The witnesses have no insight into the world conditions and thus nothing further of weight, to compare. No Great War. Nothing of significance to point the finger at. If these two teachings were to fall, then what next? The choosing of the anointed would have to go, as there is now no time limit to suggest capacity has been reached, and how can the anointed who claim such, now become unanointed? It seems far more likely that far from the watchtower making these changes, it is that making these changes will be forced upon them by revelation and without these founding principles, the whole building will collapse, naked and exposed for all to see.

  • Revv_zone@gmail.com Please8834

    Hello Robert.
    This is one of the most simple explanations of the 1914 fallacy. Hopefully you will leave this post up as a main feature. absolutely Splendid article.

    • Nigel

      Agreed

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