Are these the last days? This is an old topic that I have considered many times over the past 20 years. This article, though, is not simply a rehash for the sake of producing blog fodder. The repetition is because the Watchtower repeats the same line over and over and millions of Jehovah’s Witnesses unquestioningly accept it as the truth. I feel duty-bound to at least try to awaken a few.
But it is not just Jehovah’s Witnesses who are announcing the end of the world. Many people of the Bible fundamentalist perspective are onboard the end times bandwagon too. Instead of 1914 though, the Evangelicals point to 1948 when Israel became a nation as the beginning of the last days. To be sure, even a growing number of people with no Bible orientation at all are beginning to think something terrible is going to happen. And, of course, something terrible is going to happen.
JW.org has a front-page article entitled: Did the Bible Predict the Way People Think and Act Today? The answer is yes—albeit, with a caveat.
The article focuses on 2 Timothy 3:1-5. It is undeniably evident that people of the world—particularly in the Western world formerly dominated by Christendom—are becoming more and more ungodly, increasingly exhibiting the horrible traits the inspired apostle outlined.
But there is a problem with the Watchtower’s take on it. Did the apostle indicate that men would become lovers of themselves and lovers of money and all the other ungodly traits during the last days? No. Please read the passage carefully. The last days will be difficult, perilous times, as some translations word it because men will already have become so lawless and corrupt.
Think about this: If you are older, like myself, think back to perhaps the 1950s or 60s. Were people as self-absorbed and ungodly back then? No. Definitely not. And I am confident that this is not just my personal observation.
Society has undergone a multi-generational degradation. It has actually required a concerted effort on the part of the rulers of darkness to morally degrade society so thoroughly. But now it is mission accomplished. That being true, can we honestly say that the 1950s or 60s were critical times hard to deal with? What about the 70s or 80s? Let us take it a step further: What about the 90s and even up to the present? Are these really critical times hard to deal with?
Not to minimize the hardships of millions of people in poverty and in war zones, but since it is inarguably true that the post-WW2 period has been a time of relative peace and prosperity and society was not nearly as corrupted, selfish and pleasure-mad as it has now become, how could the world have been in its last days since 1914?
At least consider the possibility that the critical times hard to deal with have not begun. And if you are daring enough, ponder the ramifications that the last days are about to begin.
Now consider the Watchtower’s question: Will all human society ultimately descend into complete chaos? Here is their answer:
No. Human society will not break down completely. Instead, God will soon remove the people who are determined to violate his standards. (Psalm 37:38) He will establish “a new earth”—a new human society here on our earth—where meek people will live in peace forever.
The Watchtower’s simplistic answer is very troubling. Yes, we believe God is going to establish a new world. But what about this world? Perhaps Bethel could enlarge upon their answer and explain what is meant by human society not breaking down completely. What would even a partial breakdown look like? Really, what may we expect during the last days?
What would happen if there was a massive failure of the power grid? How long would it take before the cities exploded in chaos? One week? Two? Consider how society will be impacted when the terminally bankrupt global financial system finally crashes. How will the multitudes of money lovers react when they lose everything?
Given the recent explosion of violence in the Middle East and the extreme hatred of Arabs and Jews coupled with the untold numbers of radical Islamic young men, many trained terrorists who have been urged to invade Europe and America, what happens when these sleeper cells awaken and begin destroying their host countries? Will civilization stick together?
Or, what if there were to be another world war accompanied by food shortages and deadly pandemics? What if cities are targeted by nuclear missiles? Would civilization go on in a business-as-usual fashion or would there be critical times hard to deal with exacerbated by society’s incurable greed and selfishness?
These are not so far-fetched hypothetical questions. As already stated, even people who are not biblically oriented fear that a global war and economic collapse are in the offing. And that brings up another unsettling question. Why are the seers at Bethel so oblivious?
I can’t help but think that the Governing Body has lost touch with reality. They reside in a gated community tucked away in a forest with a private lake far removed from the grim and crime of New York City. They have waiters and attendants and helpers and maids and all the amenities of luxury living. Not to mention hundreds of millions of dollars at their disposal. I am surprised they haven’t purchased a private jet yet, you know, to get around more speedily to take care of Kingdom business.
The Governing Body has always imagined that the great tribulation will involve the destruction of organized religion and Jehovah’s Witnesses expect to be bystanders and spectators to the carnage. It is as the scripture says of them, they have made a covenant with death and expect to be high and dry when the storm sweeps away the wicked.
Speaking through Jeremiah Jehovah is even more direct: “For among my people there have been found wicked men. They keep peering, as when birdcatchers crouch down. They have set a ruinous trap. It is men that they catch. As a cage is full of flying creatures, so their houses are full of deception. That is why they have become great and they gain riches. They have grown fat; they have become shiny. They have also overflowed with bad things. No legal case have they pleaded, even the legal case of the fatherless boy, that they may gain success; and the judgment of the poor ones they have not taken up.” — Jeremiah 5:26-28
It is as Jehovah described 25 centuries ago. Bethel is full of deception. They have gained riches and grown fat and have crushed sexually abused children and defrauded entire congregations.
Jehovah’s Witnesses are like birds caught in a cage. Except they do not know it. They have been thoroughly deceived by the Watchtower. How so? By their interpretation of Bible prophecies and by the false expectations that go with that. According to those looked upon as watchmen virtually all prophecy has been fulfilled—including the epic second coming of Christ.
For example, the death-stroke upon the head of the beast depicted in the 13th chapter of Revelation, which is a direct result of Satan and his angels being violently ejected from heaven, has been relegated to a non-event. In case you missed it, the leading political powers of the world collapsed during the First World War. Many other examples could be considered demonstrating how the Watchtower has rendered prophecy into meaningless nonsense. That is why the Watchtower cannot conceive of a complete breakdown of society. They have apparently even deluded themselves.
But God’s word certainly foretells that there will be a complete breakdown of society. It is even so written in the book of the Apocalypse, otherwise known as Revelation. Using highly symbolic language the book of Truth states: “And I saw when he opened the sixth seal, and a great earthquake occurred; and the sun became black as sackcloth made of hair, and the entire moon became as blood, and the stars of heaven fell to the earth as when a fig tree shaken by a high wind drops its unripe figs. And the heaven departed as a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and every island was removed from its place. 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. 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, because the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” — Rev 6:12-17
The passage above can only be describing the collapse of civilization. No wonder Jesus said many will be stumbled and hate one another and betray one another. When all the things the Watchtower has skillfully deluded Jehovah’s Witnesses into believing have already occurred in the past century explode into reality in the future, the trap will have sprung.