SongofHannahKeymasterMarch 13, 2017 at 1:25 pmPost count: 67
Like many of you, I stopped donating when I became aware of corrupt practices of WT due to the “Man of Lawlessness”. But then we had this study from the January 2017 WT last week “Trust in Jehovah and Do What Is Good” – and I am having second thoughts. Because crazily, they make a valid point…
17) Think, too, of the needy widow in Jesus’ day. (Read Luke 21:1-4.) She could hardly do anything about the corrupt practices being carried on at the temple. (Matt. 21:12, 13) And there was likely little she could do to improve her financial situation. Yet, she voluntarily contributed those “two small coins,” which were “all the means of living she had.” That faithful woman demonstrated wholehearted trust in Jehovah, knowing that if she put spiritual things first, he would provide for her physical needs. The widow’s trust moved her to support the existing arrangement for true worship. Likewise, we trust that if we seek first the Kingdom, Jehovah will make sure that we have what we need.—Matt. 6:33.
Anyone care to share their thoughts on this?noelnamelyParticipantMarch 14, 2017 at 12:53 amPost count: 1
Very good point! I had been of a mind that if they were promoting False Prophecy, 1914, Pagan practice of shunning etc. that my support was wrong. Then you mentioned the Widow and I began to shift. But remembering that they do not seem to look after those who struggle, I’m back where I started. I definitely need a better understanding of this & knowing the Right of it?
Thank You for bringing that up……Robert KingKeymasterMarch 14, 2017 at 8:12 pmPost count: 33
That man of lawlessness is also called the “son of destruction.” That designation was also given to Judas. There is a connection. Now, think back to the time when the woman poured very expensive perfumed nard on Jesus’ feet. Judas protested, asking why this woman was allowed to perform this extravagant waste, when the nard could have been sold for 300 denarii and the money distributed to the poor. But Judas only said that because he was the treasurer and he was stealing the money entrusted to him.
The WT’s plea sounds very Judas-y, in my opinion.
It’s your choice, Jehovah’s knows your heart. But, personally, I choose to give directly to those in need.Burt Reynolds.ParticipantMarch 15, 2017 at 11:47 amPost count: 15
From my point of view, I only gave very little when I was within the watchtower. I was told that the watchtower did great works of charity but never spoke about it. Ships were leaving New York bound for Africa laden with food and clothing etc as an example. I never doubted it. But I do now. Also, the reports are that millions of dollars are being used to fight the cases of those abused by the organisation, so that they may not be recompensed. The watchtower governing body are seen to be travelling first class, wearing expensive watches, having pianos delivered to their suites in the new building, expensive luxury cars. Where is the giving? Where are the poor brothers given assistance to be found? Also, the bible says that Jehovah has no need of gold and silver. If Jehovah supports the organisation, who can be against it? The preaching work has never needed magazines, books, assembly halls, even Kingdom Halls. The task was to preach the word of Jehovah for a witness. We all did that for nothing. If we saw people destitute, we helped them. I could not give money to the watchtower as it may spend that money on fighting the needs of those who have been abused by persons in a position of trust, or protected by the two witness rule. Like Robert, I choose to give direct to those in need.DaisyParticipantMarch 15, 2017 at 6:54 pmPost count: 4
Jesus sandwiches the story of the needy widow between condemning the religious leaders and the destruction of the temple Mark 12:38-13:2.
He said, the extent of the scribes faith runs no deeper than religious displays : flowing robes, respectful greetings, seats of honour in the synagogue and at banquets. Their long prayers and hypocritical piety he states, covers up their crimes of cheating widows out of their property. And here she comes, the needy widow, the very representation of the results of the greediness of the teachers, with just two small coins which were “all the means of living she had”. Of course ” there was likely little she could do to improve her financial situation” as after craftily relieving her of house, car, jewellery, pension, children’s inheritance and receiving hefty monthly direct debt payments she was made destitute by thieves who thought only of themselves, made obvious by their total disregard for God’s Laws. The widow’s love and trust for God was stronger than the greedy hypocrite leaders who were more concerned with appearances than godlinessand that’s why “she was moved to support the existing arrangement”. The arrangement that brought jesus’s condemnation when he spoke of the temple being destroyed?v. dakinParticipantMarch 16, 2017 at 1:09 pmPost count: 3Burt Reynolds.ParticipantMarch 17, 2017 at 3:55 amPost count: 15
Yes, you are absolutely correct. I wonder whether appearing before Jehovah empty handed applies to money, or deeds, preaching or faith though. I agree the principle but I am just not sure of its intent. Certainly there is a question as to what we were giving money for, and that perhaps, the point of the example Christ gave was to illustrate the condition of the priests, and the motive of support that the widow showed. Is it deeds, not financial support? The widows mite was worthless. But the meaning was critical. Jehovah owns the gold already. What use does he have for it, or need? Personally, what stops me from giving to the congregation now, is the thought of what use the money is being put to. Redress at court. Court fines, beating the wronged, luxury, supporting the promulgation of the lie. I give direct to the poor on occasion and taught my children to do the same. What I give is in preaching…..and that’s too little…..faith, and in trying to reach the standard. I do wonder if the governing body donate money, as they are the ones using it.SongofHannahKeymasterMarch 17, 2017 at 9:10 amPost count: 67
Thanks everyone for your very scripturally thought-out replies. Daisy, you helped me see a facet of the scriptures I never noticed before. And V.Dakin’s reply really gave me pause for thought. And Burt, I think you may have something there… I’m gonna continue to mull all this counsel over. Thanks so much, dear faithful friends!Frank CongerParticipantMarch 20, 2017 at 7:47 pmPost count: 66
I doubt that Jehovah views the Watchtower as his people since the organization as a whole is an unrepentant sinner against Jehovah. They have never shown any repentance that I could see since they committed the grievous errors of joining the U.N. and later disfellowshipped anyone who brought up the subject, while at the same time lying to all the Elders in their letter to the congregations that it was the “opposer’s” who had made up this whole story. They brought the throne of Satan into the temple of God for crying out loud. I think Jehovah views all those on earth with faith in him “his people” and the angels will harvest these ones into God’s storehouse for salvation.
That being said, I hope the Watchtower and all those who are guilty of those sins do repent like their counterparts in Nineveh did when prompted by Jonah to do so. That would indeed make my heart glad.
As far a giving, I would do what watchman does and give money or gifts to the people who need it where we live. There are many that fall into that category. When I give, that’s who I give to.
Frankrlong9000ParticipantMarch 23, 2017 at 3:14 amPost count: 9
And for a another viewpoint, an occurrence from my own life. When still active in congregation life, occasionally a need was made known and one would just be overcome, almost compelled to do what one could to help. As an inactive JW, I hadn’t experienced that for some years, I think because I’d become indifferent to “worldly” people. Recently a co-worker I don’t know all that well is relating to myself and others how he had left his wallet in the car and it was broken into emptied of $X. Now this guy has eight kids, works two full time jobs and handyman’s on the side to keep all his kids fed. And he is just devastated because the $X was the money he had managed to put aside for his kid’s Christmas. When alone with him, I asked what I could do to help and he asks if I have any work he can do around my place. At this point, I’m practically bawling, inside anyway. It didn’t even matter how disgusted I am by Christmas, I just HAD to make this man whole again. I can’t explain it. It felt like MY life depended on it. Several such circumstances have presented themselves over that past year and the pull to fill the need has literally been irresistible.
I’m NOT feeling so compelled to support the activities I see the WT engaged in. There is no amount of “good” work they could be doing that would make me ignore the wholesale criminal injustice they are perpetuating on the most vulnerable in their care. Now if they were to actually accept responsibility for the child abuse cover-up and compensate the victims by giving every dollar they control to the settlement, I would be the first to reopen my wallet. As it seems clear that Jehovah is, for the time being, ignoring the WT just as he ignores the rest of Christendom, I am following His lead. As the true owner of any/all resources I happen to be in possession of, Jehovah is welcome to transfer them from my account to the WT any time he wishes. Until then, I’m filling need when and where I see need and my conscience has never been clearerAdrew_arakeParticipantMarch 24, 2017 at 5:20 pmPost count: 7jwstudentParticipantMarch 28, 2017 at 6:54 amPost count: 17peaceful_watersParticipantMarch 29, 2017 at 10:49 amPost count: 2
Personally, I don’t donate any more to the WT. I do think it is a personal choice, however. Like mentioned the point is to give from your heart. I don’t see how if you feel like giving to them that you should feel guilty. Like Robert mentioned Jehovah knows what’s in your heart. Jehovah appreciates ALL acts of kindness, mercy and generosity. The widow gave all she had out of love while others gave of their surplus. It was a sacrifice out of love.
Yes much of the funding the WT demands is going to Pedophile court cases, for example, but there is still a NEED for donations to spread what there still is abour the Good News. Of course it’s absolutely enraging that they ask us to give when it may be used for something evil. But in the end as long as we are displaying a loving attitude, an open heart and putting others above ourselves, we are following Jesus commission.
I suppose in my heart though, I can’t bring myself to give anymore to the WT. It may be some embitterment I have to deal with sadly, I don’t really know. Regardless of where the money would be going, to something worthwile or corrupt. That’s just how I feel at the moment. I give to other sources of need, like our local Food Bank for example.
Like Burt mentioned I also did not contribute a substancial amount financially to the WT before. I probably gave more through buying coffees and donating gas money to brothers and sisters while out in service 😉StudyPartnerParticipantApril 23, 2017 at 7:16 pmPost count: 8
Thanks everyone for your very scripturally thought-out replies. Daisy, you helped me see a facet of the scriptures I never noticed before. And V.Dakin’s reply really gave me pause for thought. And Burt, I think you may have something there… I’m gonna continue to mull all this counsel over. Thanks so much, dear faithful friends!
I respect your asking for opinions to consider that paragraph in the WT as my wife and I had a similar thought process as yourself. I also appreciate the input of @Daisy and @V.Dakin here, though I would respectfully suggest some additional thought process to both comments:
For Daisy, while it is true Jesus sandwiched the reference to the widow in between reminders about the disgraceful religious leaders, He did so in a manner of PRAISE, showing she was to be respected for her action. Her conscience led her to give, despite the organization of the day, and she was praised for it. We should each do as we feel will allow us to stand before Christ unashamed. (2 Cor. 5:10)
For V.Dakin, while the extremely general quoted usage of Exodus 23:15 COULD be applied (if someone chooses now to live under Law), the context of that quote, which must include the details given at Exodus 34:18-20 would lend to an understanding that the offerings one would carry in before Jehovah would prefigure the Christ; so now that He has given the ultimate sacrifice (offering) for us, and is now the High Priest we go before, it seems to me that using this reference would negate our current position, and that of Jesus. As Paul put it, our offerings are now to be the ‘bulls of our lips’ as it were. (Hosea 14:2; Heb. 13:15)
Due to some of the ways finances are used in what we consider an “unChristian” manner, my wife and I decided to regularly pray for Jesus to direct us to those who are in financial need for us to help as we can, and He has done so on multiple occasions. Of course this is only possible through holy spirit from Jehovah. This allows us to remain in good conscience when donating to those who we know need it, first to those who are sharers in our faith, but also to all others as we feel directed. This is also the reason we do not donate to most charitable organizations in the world.
Hope you find this helpful.
P.S. Sorry to any and all if my usage of tags or quotes are a wreck, first time and having trouble figuring out where to get help on it! 😉 Patience please! Thank you!StudyPartnerParticipantApril 23, 2017 at 9:42 pmPost count: 8
Sorry if you knew this already, you posed it as a question… 🙂
.. Pagan practice of shunning etc.
Is the practice of shunning a pagan thing? Didn’t the Bible instruct us at 1 Cor 5:11 to ..”stop keeping company with anybody called a brother who is sexually immoral, or a greedy person … not even eating with such a man.” ?
Good job with your reference! The practice of shunning is NOT pagan, you are correct @jwstudent but the WAY it is done is NOT the way Jesus said to do it, nor is it done the way the early Christians did it. Christianity is PERSONAL, and therefore no central individual or group of individuals is supposed to make the choice of shunning FOR US…we are each supposed to be spiritually mature enough to choose to only have as friends those who are lovers of TRUTH, Christ, and God. Jesus showed kindness to sinners to win them to repentance, but He didn’t surround Himself with unrepentant ones; in fact when the Pharisees came around, He acted the same way John the Baptizer did, made a show of how and why they needed repentance! You can see an example/proof of this at Matt. 18:15-17; remember Jesus was speaking to Jews, so for them to treat someone like someone “of the nations” (they didn’t make close friends of, nor eat with gentiles), then that was telling Jews to SHUN unrepentant Jews. On the other hand, the scripture in 1 John about not saying a greeting to one who isn’t bringing the teachings of Christ (that could be in word or action of course), well why would we treat with friendliness someone who is clearly an enemy of Our King, and therefore of Our God as well? Again, that should not require an elder, or body of elders to get us to do it; we should choose to do that as individuals out of our respect for Jesus and Jehovah!
Keep up with your studies! 🙂
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