A Jehovah's Witness is at my Door!

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Wittenberger, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. Wittenberger

    Wittenberger
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    This past Saturday, at 10 AM, I heard a knock at my door. Who was it?

    You guessed correctly: a friendly, smiling Jehovah's Witness!

    He politely introduced himself and offered me a copy of the Watch Tower. I declined. He then proceeded to tell me about his beliefs including the belief that Jesus Christ is God's son, but that he is not God. He then took out his JW version of the Bible, and was about to open it when I stopped him.

    I wasn't going to take his bait.

    "I'm not going to debate you on Scripture," I said. "Because for every verse I give you that indicates that Christ IS God, you will interpret the verse to say He is not God. It will be a waste of both of our times. It will boil down to your interpretation versus my interpretation. But instead of quoting Scripture to me, would you please give me any historical evidence or early Church Fathers' statements that demonstrate that early Christians held the JW beliefs?"

    "What?" he said, looking very perplexed.

    I repeated my request for historical records or statements by early Church Fathers or any early Christian, for that matter, that demonstrates that early Christians held JW beliefs.

    Here was his response:

    1. The Bible is the only authority we need.
    2. The Holy Spirit reveals the "truth" to true believers.
    3. The Church Fathers were all "Catholics" therefore their statements cannot be trusted.
    4. I am unable to give you evidence that early Christians believed like "us" because the Catholics destroyed it all.

    "Exactly," I said. "You don't have any evidence that corroborates your beliefs, do you? Come back and talk to me when you find some! Have a nice day! Oh and by the way, don't bring back the name "Arias". He was condemned by the early Church as a heretic for believing that Christ was not God. Maybe you Jehovah's Witnesses should take note of that."

    As I closed the door, I thought to myself, "Hmmm...Haven't I heard those exact same four excuses before somewhere?"


    -A conservative Lutheran Christian
    www.LutherWasNotBornAgain.com
     
    #1 Wittenberger, Aug 28, 2012
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  2. Yeshua1

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    Are you saying that JW and baptists are the same thing?
     
  3. The Biblicist

    The Biblicist
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    You met either a ignorant or lying JW. JW's openly claim that the Watchtower Society is the prophet and mouthpiece of God, explicitly the governing body.

    They are just like Roman Catholics. They believe the scriptures must be intepreted by the governing body as the mouthpeice of God.

    Nice try, but wrong again!

    PS. I have dealt with JW's for the past 40 years and have had Bible studies with them and owned most of their literature and read it first hand. Whoever told you gave you that list is an ignorant JW or you simply made it up.
     
    #3 The Biblicist, Aug 28, 2012
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  4. Wittenberger

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    Absolutely not. Baptists are Christians. JW's are not.
     
  5. The Biblicist

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    He is trying another back door approach as he did with Mormons! Except this time his information is erroneous.

    Anyone who has ever had any extensive dealings with the JW's knows they have a PROPHET and they believe it is the Watchtower organization that is the inspired INTERPRETER of Scripture and ultimate "mouth piece" of Jehovah.

    Specifically, it is their "governing body" that determines the correct interpretation of scripture and doctrine.

    Instead of a Magisterium that Rome has, JW's have the "governing body."

    They do not believe that the Holy Spirit interprets the Word of God to every believer as they do not even believe the Holy Spirit is a Person or God but believe the "governing body" is the inspired interpreter of scriptures and they must follow their interpretations. The Study books are produced by the governing body and is the final authority for interpreting both scriptures and doctrine.
     
    #5 The Biblicist, Aug 28, 2012
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  6. Wittenberger

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  7. Wittenberger

    Wittenberger
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  8. The Biblicist

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    They historically identify with the Arian movement and there is plenty of historical evidence that the Arian movement has had a continuous existence since Arius. They believe that Arius represents the apostolic view.

    However, this is a side issue! They do not interpret sciptures like Baptists. They believe and they state in print that the Watch Tower organization, particularly the "governing body" is the actual mouthpeice of JHVH on earth and thus the teaching materials printed by the Watch Tower organization are the only proper interpretations of scripture.

    Hence, Jehovah's Witnesses' are more akin to Rome and the Magisterium than to Baptists as Baptists do not have any ORGANIZATON to interpret the scriptures.

    Hence, Mormonism is more akin to Rome and the Magisterium because Mormonism depends upon continuing prophetic revelation through their prophets and counsel of Apostles to define truth.
     
  9. Wittenberger

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    The JW's supreme authority will say that their beliefs come directly from the Bible. There is no need for historical evidence to prove its accuracy.

    Mormons believe they follow the correct interpretation of Scripture and that there is no need for historical evidence to back up their beliefs.

    Bottom line: both these cults believe in an internal revelation from God, whether it is to the cult's leaders or to every member of the cult is not the point.

    The Point is that they both base their beliefs on internal revelations from "God" and deny a need for historical evidence that early Christians believed like they do.

    Any denomination who denies the need for historical evidence to back up their interpretation of Scripture is treading on thin ice: one's interpretation of the Bible, and one's internal feelings that one is guided by the Holy Spirit, do not guarantee that one is right.
     
  10. Wittenberger

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    I very carefully excluded Arias from the discussion of "evidence' with my JW visitor. Arias was a heretic. Condemned by the Church. JW's are a new version of this old heresy.

    The "Watch Tower" may interpret doctrine for JW's but they do it by an inner guidance, not on the basis of Scripture, interpreted in line with the interpretation of the early Christians. They interpret Scripture by their own inner guidance.

    Some Christian denominations follow the same habit: Instead of having a hierarchy such as the Mormons, the JW's and the RCC making the decisions on doctrine, these denominations allow each individual to interpret Scripture guided by the perceived guidance of the Holy Spirit. The problem is that either the Holy Spirit is telling alot of individuals different doctrines, or the concept of individual scriptural interpretation is a fallacy of man.

    God's true Word and doctrines have always existed. There is historical evidence to prove it. Beware of new doctirnes, denominations and cults who preach new doctrines and deny the need to compare and corroborate their beliefs with those of the early Christians.

     
  11. The Biblicist

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    Not so! Just like Rome they are SEPARATED from the Word of God by an uninspired ORGANIZATIONAL PROPHET or INTERPRETER who depend upon UNINSPIRED men.

    Baptist repudiate uninspired ORGANZATIONAL PROPHETS and INTERPRETERS as MEDIATORS between God's Word and believers. We teach the priesthood of the individual believer who has direct access to God through Jesus Christ alone by the Spirit of God alone because that is precisely what the scriptures clearly teach.

    Baptists go directly to God's Word without going through uninspired interpreters. No Uninspired middle men.

    Baptists believe the Bible is sufficient for all doctrine, correction, instruction and God is sufficient to teach and lead all His children without HUMAN MEDIATORS - 1 Jn. 2:27.


    Baptists believe the Word of God provides an inspired self defining contextual pattern. Baptists believe the Bible provides simple Biblical principles of interpretation that can be objectively verified by the Scriptural context.
     
  12. Wittenberger

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    But how does anyone know that his interpretation of the Bible is correct?
    One Baptist may believe that man has a free will to come to Christ of his own choosing (Arminian), another Baptist will deny that man has a free will, God predestines who will be saved (Calvinist).

    Individual interpretation doesn't work. That is why some denominations are so splintered. Everyone and his brother thinks that the Holy Spirit is speaking directly to him and revealing the "true" interpretation of Scripture on an individial basis.

    God doesn't give individual revelations anymore. His truth is in his Word, but that Word must be interpreted with the help of early Christians who understood what the writers intended to say, NOT by each individual Christian's "inner voice".

    That voice that you are absolutely sure is the Holy Spirit may just be YOU.

    The Bible is the final authority but it isn't the only authority. Read the writings of the early Christians to understand what the authors of the New Testament meant. Writings of man never have the same authority as God's Word, but they can help you understand the true meaning.

    My converations here are not meant to insult anyone, they are meant to make you think! God's Word has always existed. He promised that it would and there is historical proof to back that up.

     
  13. The Biblicist

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    That is YOUR view of history but it is not HIS view is it? He would argue that Rome was the heretical sect.

    They do it as a consequence of interpertation of scriptures by their prophet Russell. Russell their prophet identified the Watch Tower as the "mouth peice" for God. Rome by their Prophet (Pope) and other uninspired men interpret the magisterium the very same way.


    YOu have stated YOUR PROBLEM very well in your choice of "allow." There is no LIBERTY of conscience before God in your view but only what some denomination will ALLOW.

    You may not like it but the Scriptures very clearly teaches PERSONAL indwelling and leadership by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:14,16; 1 Jn. 2:27; etc.). The Scriptures also provide the guidelines to determine the difference between Holy Spirit leadership and demonic leadership (1 Jn. 4:1; Isa. 8:20; etc).


    I realize you want some uninspired organization or tradition to provide you personal SECURITY other than a personal relationship with the Spirit of Christ but the Scriptures repudiate your security blanket. The scriptures clearly predict the utter confusion within the kingdom of God (Mt. 13; 2 Tim. 3:1-12; etc.) and repeatedly speak about being LED of the Spirit PERSONALLY and INDIVIDUALLY with specific guidelines and characteritics to discern between the spirit of confusion and the Holy Spriit's leadership.

    Jesus repudiated dependency upon "the traditions of the elders" but leaned wholly upon the scriptuers as final authority and so did the apostles and they spoke and wrote under INSPIRATION.

    God Himself providential preserves His Word and sometimes through UNBELEIVERS. Believe it or not, God does not need human confirmation that His Word is truth. I know that may come as a shock.

    God perpetuates his Word through believers but no man, no organization, no prophet, no tradition can reach inside of the human mind and heart and remove the obstacles to perceive, understand and receive truth - that is the sole job of the Holy Spirit and he can do it without anything but the Word of God.
     
    #13 The Biblicist, Aug 28, 2012
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  14. billwald

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    Baptists believe that there have been Baptists ever since Christ but where is their proof?
     
  15. Wittenberger

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    Dear Christian brother,

    You can provide no more proof that your beliefs are guided by the Holy Spirit than can the cults. I know you find that offensive but that is my honest opinion. They and you both use your internal feelings to tell you that YOU have the Holy Spirit guiding you. Your interpretation of the Bible has nothing to back it up other than your sincere and heartfelt belief that you are right.

    Just saying "I know I'm right, because the Holy Spirit tells me I'm right, is a circular argument. As long as you stick to that argument, no one can reason with you.

    Again, I'm not trying to offend. I used to believe like you do. Please take my words as those of a concerned brother, and not someone who is just looking to win an argument.

     
  16. The Biblicist

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    Bill, here is the issue in a nutshell. Roman Catholics carefullly selected and preserved the historical documentation they wanted to preserve for the first 1000 years. However, in that documentation their are glimpses that their historical motivations were not that honorable or trustworthy when it comes to rightly portraying their opponents or dealing with historical facts.

    For example, do you remember the "false decretals"? If it were not for that historical falsification the papal doctrine would doubtless have not succeeded.

    There are non-religious historians such as Richard Leaky and Gibbons that point out such problems in their historical honesty.

    Second, any historical authority that challenges the Romanistic perpsective of history is immediately denounced as "discredited" sources and so the fix is always in.

    Third, there are abundance of historians and history books that interpret the sources materials differently. Many like to mock Dr. John T. Christian but the fact of the matter is, his history book, and work still stands as a model of the "free church" perspective. There are other Baptists historians who are no Landmarkers who share the same perspective.

    Of course, those who take the Romanist view point pour out scorn and ridicule.

    However, the best history book the world has ever known proves the Roman perpsective of history is that of apostate Christianity and that is the inspired prophetic history of the New Testament.

    The New Testament prophetically characterizes the distinctions between the rise of apostate Christianity and continued apostolic Christianity between the apostolic age and the second coming of Christ. The whole romanistic veiw of history falls exactly under the characteristics that the scriptures predict of apostate Christianity.
     
  17. The Biblicist

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    Here is where you are wrong! I just did! I confronted the Mormon with the Bible and challenged him to find anywhere the Scriptures teach that you can know the Holy Spirit's leadership by a "burning in the bosom"!

    Response - they cannot and so they do just like YOU - take refuge in uninspired traditions of men!

    This is the point you do not get! The Word of God itself is sufficient to repudiate false interpretations IF you "study to shew yourself a workman that needeth not to be ASHAMED but RIGHTLY dividing the Word of truth."

    Your problem is that you esteem men more highly than God and his word and therefore they are your security.
     
  18. The Biblicist

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    Scriptures do not interpret themselves, however, the scriptures provide a contextual pattern of interpretation, or all that is necessary so that the child of God can use to test any teaching if it is truth or error.

    So, if a person says the evidence of Holy Spirit leadership is a "burning in the bosom" the Christian can TEST that teaching by the Word of God two different ways:

    1. Ask where in scriptures that is taught.

    2. Know the scriptures well enough contextually to expose and condemn it as something extra-biblical.

    However, the Mormon/JW/Roman Catholic/Lutheran way is DEPENDENCY not on God or His Word or His Spirit but upon uninspired ORGANZATIONS or TRADITIONS.

    QUESTION: How can YOU know your TRADITIONAL HISTORICAL interpretation is right and not wrong? Majority opinion? A "burning in your bosom"??

    Does it not come right back to PERSONAL investigation and ultimately dependency upon the Holy Spirit in some manner of fashion to know the truth THAT METHOD OF DEPENDENCY?

     
  19. The Biblicist

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    If that were our method you would be completely right, but it is not! We are convinced by the contextual DATA or EVIDENCE provided by the Scriptures themselves IN ADDITION to confirmation our our studies by the Holy Spirit. So it is not merely a FEELING but CONVICTION due to studying the available data provided by the Scriptures.

    So when someone says "a burning in the bosom, a feeling, is proof of the leadership of the Spirit" we respond WHERE DOES SCRIPTURE SAY THAT? If he takes us to a text that does not say it explicilty but he says infers it, we look at the BIBLICAL DATA provided in the context and see if his inference fits the available data. If it does then we must conceded whether we "FEEL" like it or not. If it does not, then we resist it and reject. The Bible commands us to prove all things and tells us exactly how to do that.

    So your argument is a straw man argument which does not include all the correct facts.

    The true model is "thy word IS truth" and the Spirit is The "Spirit of truth" and so it is a combination of STUDYING the data the scripture supplies the reader with in connection with dependency upon the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us in our studies in conjunction with principles of intepretation the Bible itself provides.
     
    #19 The Biblicist, Aug 28, 2012
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  20. The Biblicist

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    Here is the recipe for interpreting the Word of God:

    1. The contextual data supplied by the Bible itself

    2. Apply The principles of interpretation supplied by the Bible

    3. Dependency upon the Holy Spirit as you study both data and use Biblical principles of interpretation.

    Whatever doctrine or tradition you are confronted with - test it by this threefold method.

    Those who give up personal responsibility and DEPEND upon uninspired MEDIATORS between them and God's Word better hope they chose the right mediator and their interpetations are true.

    1. Catholicism has its magisterium
    2. JW's have their "governing body"
    3. Mormon's have their prophets and apostolic counsel
    4. Lutherans' have their many varied traditions

    What is common to all the above is complete dependency upon something and someone other than God's Word for final authority as to what is truth.

    JW's are told not read literature by others because it is demon possessed and so they are SLAVES to the watchtower

    Catholics are told that only the Church and its traditions are where truth is and so they are SLAVES to the magisterium

    Mormons are told that the New World only has their scriptures and their prophets for truth and so they are SLAVES to Joseph Smith.

    Bible believers are only SLAVES OF GOD because they have NO UNINSPIRED MEDIATORS the depend wholly upon but as the noble Bereans they test all things by scriptures.


     

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