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Criticism of Jehovah's Witnesses

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Raymond Franz (1922–2010), writer of Crisis of Conscience, former member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses and critic of the institution

Jehovah's Witnesses have been criticized by adherents of mainstream Christianity, members of the medical community, former Jehovah's Witnesses, and commentators with regard to their beliefs and practices. The Jehovah's Witness movement's leaders have been accused of practicing doctrinal inconsistencies and making doctrinal reversals, making failed predictions, mistranslating the Bible, harshly treating former Jehovah's Witnesses, and leading the Jehovah's Witness movement in an autocratic and coercive manner. Jehovah's Witnesses have also been criticized because they reject blood transfusions, even in life-threatening medical situations, and for failing to report cases of sexual abuse to the authorities. Many of the claims are denied by Jehovah's Witnesses and some have also been disputed by courts and religious scholars.

Social criticisms


Authoritarianism and denial of free speech


Doctrines of Jehovah's Witnesses are established by the Governing Body,[1][2] and the denomination does not tolerate dissent over doctrines and practices.[3][4][5] Members who continue to openly disagree with the movement's teachings after initial warnings may be expelled and shunned.[6][7][8] Witness publications strongly discourage followers from questioning doctrine and counsel received from the Governing Body, reasoning that it is to be trusted as part of "God's organization".[5][9][10][11] They also warn members to "avoid independent thinking", claiming such thinking "was introduced by Satan the Devil"[12][13] and would "cause division".[14] Those who openly disagree with official teachings are condemned as "apostates" who are "mentally diseased".[15][16][17]

Former Governing Body member Raymond Franz accused the movement's Governing Body of resenting, deprecating and seeking to silence alternative viewpoints within the organization[18] and demanding organizational conformity that overrides personal conscience.[19] He said the Watch Tower Society confirmed its position when, in a 1954 court case in Scotland, Watch Tower Society legal counsel Hayden C. Covington said of Jehovah's Witnesses: "We must have unity ... unity at all costs".[20] He also stated that Witnesses are subject to a disciplinary system that encourages informants.[21][22]

Franz and others have described Jehovah's Witnesses' meetings as "catechistical" question-and-answer sessions in which questions and answers are both provided by the organization, placing pressure on members to reiterate its opinions.[23][24] Former Witnesses Heather and Gary Botting said Witnesses "are told what they should feel and think".[25] Raymond Franz stated that members who do voice viewpoints different from those expressed in publications and at meetings are viewed with suspicion,[26] and that most Witnesses would be fearful to voice criticism of the organization for fear of being accused of disloyalty.[19]

Authors have drawn attention to frequent Watch Tower warnings against the "dangers" and "infection" of "independent thinking", including questioning any of its published statements or teachings,[27][28][29] and instructions that members refrain from engaging in independent Bible research.[30][31][32] The Watch Tower Society also directs that members must not read criticism of the organization by "apostates"[33][34] or material published by other religious organizations.[35][36] Heather and Gary Botting stated, "Jehovah's Witnesses will brook no criticism from within, as many concerned members who have attempted to voice alternative opinions regarding the basic doctrine or application of social pressure have discovered to their chagrin."[37]

The Bottings argue that the power of the Watch Tower Society to control members is gained through the acceptance of the Society "quite literally as the voice of Jehovah—God's 'mouthpiece'".[25] Franz also said the concept of loyalty to God's organization has no scriptural support and serves only to reinforce the movement's authority structure, with its strong emphasis on human authority.[38] He said The Watchtower has repeatedly blurred discussions of both Jesus Christ's loyalty to God and the apostles' loyalty to Christ to promote the view that Witnesses should be loyal to the Watch Tower Society.[39] Heather and Gary Botting said that challenging the views of members higher in the hierarchy is regarded as tantamount to challenging God himself.[40]

The Watch Tower Society has described Jehovah's Witnesses' intolerance of dissident and divergent doctrinal views within its ranks as "strict", but claims its stance is based on the scriptural precedent of 2 Timothy 2:17, 18 in which the Apostle Paul condemns heretics Hymenaeus and Philetus who denied the resurrection of Jesus. It said: "Following such Scriptural patterns, if a Christian (who claims belief in God, the Bible, and Jesus) unrepentantly promotes false teachings, it may be necessary for him to be expelled from the congregation.... Hence, the true Christian congregation cannot rightly be accused of being harshly dogmatic."[6]

Various associations of former members have been formed to highlight what they consider to be structural and institutionalized psychological abuses of Jehovah's Witness members and former members. Complaints include the control of adherents, marginalization, discrimination against women and sexual diversity, and attacks on other religious institutions. For example, the Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses in Spain states that ostracism of former or disaffected members can lead to extreme loneliness,[41][42] which can lead to severe depression or even suicide.[43] They also state that Jehovah's Witnesses' system of congregational discipline have been used to investigate criminal matters, hiding or hindering reports of child abuse and rape.[44][45] Former members from other Spanish-speaking countries have also created similar associations.[46][47]

Comments of sociologists


Sociologist Rodney Stark says that Jehovah's Witness leaders are "not always very democratic" and members are expected to conform to "rather strict standards", but that enforcement tends to be informal, sustained by close bonds of friendship, and that Jehovah's Witnesses see themselves as "part of the power structure rather than subject to it".[48] Sociologist James A. Beckford, however, states that the Watch Tower Society is intolerant of dissent or open discussion of doctrines and practices,[49] and demands uniformity of beliefs from its members.[50] He observed that the Society denies the legitimacy of all criticism of itself and that the habit of questioning official doctrine is "strenuously combated at all organizational levels".[51] For similar reasons, Alan Rogerson describes the movement's leadership as totalitarian.[52]

Dr. George D. Chryssides and Dr. James A. Beverley reported that Witness publications teach that individuals' consciences are unreliable and need to be subordinated to scripture and to the Watch Tower Society.[53] Beverley describes the belief that organizational loyalty is equal to divine loyalty[54] as the "central myth" of Jehovah's Witnesses employed to ensure complete obedience.[55] Andrew Holden also observed that Witnesses see no distinction between loyalty to Jehovah and to the movement itself,[56] and said that Witnesses are "under official surveillance" within the congregation.[57] He noted that members who cannot conscientiously agree with all the movement's teachings are expelled and shunned.[58] He also said that Witnesses are taught their theology in a highly mechanistic fashion, learning almost by rote.[59]

Description as a cult


Authors Anthony A. Hoekema, Ron Rhodes[60] and Alan W. Gomes[61] claim Jehovah's Witnesses are a religious cult. Hoekema bases his judgment on a range of what he describes as general characteristics of a cult, including the tendency to elevate peripheral teachings (such as door-to-door preaching) to great prominence, extra-scriptural source of authority (Hoekema highlights Watch Tower teachings that the Bible may be understood only as it is interpreted by the Governing Body), a view of the group as the exclusive community of the saved (Watch Tower publications teach that Witnesses alone are God's people and only they will survive Armageddon) and the group's central role in eschatology (Hoekema says Witness publications claim the group was called into existence by God to fill in a gap in the truth neglected by existing churches, marking the climax of sacred history).[62]

Jehovah's Witnesses state that they are not a cult[63] and say that although individuals need proper guidance from God, they should do their own thinking.[64][65]

In 1992, American religious scholar J. Gordon Melton placed the Jehovah's Witnesses denomination in a list of "established cults".[66] However, he and others have since been more reluctant to use the term "cult" for various groups, including Jehovah's Witnesses, because the term is considered too controversial.[67] Ex-cult watchdog John Bowen Brown II[68] and Knocking producer Joel P. Engardio also reject the assertion that Jehovah's Witnesses is a cult.[69][70] The encyclopedia Contemporary American Religion stated, "Various critics and ex-members in recent years have wrongly labeled Jehovah's Witnesses a 'cult'."[71]



Since 1920, the Watch Tower Society has required all congregation members participating in the preaching work to turn in written reports of the amount of their activity,[72] explaining that the reports help the Society to plan its activities and identify areas of greater need[73] and help congregation elders to identify those who may need assistance.[74] In 1943, the Society imposed personal quotas, requiring all active Witnesses to spend at least 60 hours of door-to-door preaching per month, claiming these were "directions from the Lord".[75] Although these quotas were subsequently removed, Raymond Franz claims "invisible" quotas remained, obliging Witnesses to meet certain levels of preaching work to remain in good standing in the congregation[26] or to qualify for eldership.[19] Franz describes repeated urging for adherents to "put kingdom interests first" and devote increasing amounts of time to door-to-door preaching efforts as coercive pressure. He says many Witnesses constantly feel guilty that they are not doing more in "field activity".[19]

Former Witnesses Heather and Gary Botting, claiming an emphasis on a personal track record would mean that salvation is effectively being "bought" with "good works", observed: "No matter how long a Witness remains an active distributor of literature, the moment he ceases to be active he is regarded by his peers as good as dead in terms of achieving the ultimate goal of life everlasting in an earthly paradise.... Few realize upon entering the movement that the purchase price is open-ended and that the bill can never be paid in full until death or the advent of Armageddon."[76]

The Watchtower, however, noted that although public preaching is necessary, such works do not "save" a Christian and it urged Witnesses to examine their motive for engaging in preaching activity.[77]

According to Andrew Holden, "those who fail to devote a satisfactory amount of time to doorstep evangelism soon lose the respect of their co-religionists. The Witnesses are thus forced to think quantitatively about their salvation."[78]

Medical and legal commentators have noted cases, claiming that Witness medical patients were coerced to obey the denomination's ban on blood transfusions.[79][80][81] According to Osamu Muramoto, in the Journal of Medical Ethics, those who unrepentantly receive prohibited blood products are labeled "apostates", expelled, and shunned by other Jehovah's Witness friends or family members.[82] He also states that "there is considerable documentation that [Jehovah's Witnesses] can be subject to psychological coercion".[83]

In a case involving a review of a Russian district court decision, the European Court of Human Rights found nothing in the judgements to suggest that any form of improper pressure or undue influence was applied. It noted: "On the contrary, it appears that many Jehovah's Witnesses have made a deliberate choice to refuse blood transfusions in advance, free from time constraints of an emergency situation." The court said: "The freedom to accept or refuse specific medical treatment, or to select an alternative form of treatment, is vital to the principles of self-determination and personal autonomy. A competent adult patient is free to decide ... not to have a blood transfusion. However, for this freedom to be meaningful, patients must have the right to make choices that accord with their own views and values, regardless of how irrational, unwise or imprudent such choices may appear to others." The court also stated that, "even though the Jehovah's Witnesses whose opposition to blood transfusions was cited in evidence were adults having legal capacity to refuse that form of treatment, the findings of the Russian courts can be understood to mean that their refusals had not been an expression of their true will but rather the product of pressure exerted on them by the applicant community. The Court accepts that, given that health and possibly life itself are at stake in such situations, the authenticity of the patient's refusal of medical treatment is a legitimate concern."[84]



Jehovah's Witnesses are instructed to shun members who unrepentantly engage in "gross sin"[85] (most commonly for breaches of the Witnesses' code of personal morality),[86][87] and "remorseless apostasy".[88] The process is said to uphold God's standards, preserve the congregation's spiritual cleanness, and possibly prompt a change of attitude in the wrongdoer.[85] The practice requires that the expelled person be shunned by all members of the group, including family members who do not live in the same home, unless they qualify for re-admission. Expelled individuals cannot be given a funeral at a Kingdom Hall.[89][90] Members often face difficulties and trauma once expelled because of their previously limited contact with the outside world.[15][91] A 2021 qualitative psychological research study of interviews with former Jehovah's Witnesses suggested their experiences of ostracism from their family and friends can be associated with increased mental health risks.[92] The Watchtower's description of those who leave as being "mentally diseased" has drawn criticism from some current and former members; in Britain some have argued that the description may constitute a breach of laws regarding religious hatred.[93][94]

The Watch Tower Society has attracted criticism for shunning individuals who decide they cannot conscientiously agree with all the denomination's teachings and practices. Sociologist Andrew Holden says that because the group provides no valid reason for leaving, those who do choose to leave are regarded as traitors.[95] According to Raymond Franz, those who decide they cannot accept Watch Tower teachings and practices often live in a climate of fear, feeling they must constantly be on guard about what they say, do and read. He says those who do express any disagreement, even in a private conversation with friends, risk investigation and trial by a judicial committee as apostates or heretics[96] and classed as "wicked".[97]

Franz argues that the threat of expulsion for expressing disagreement with the Watch Tower Society's teachings is designed to create a sterile atmosphere in which the organization's teachings and policies can circulate without the risk of confronting serious questioning or adverse evidence.[98] The result, according to Holden, is that individuals may spend most of their lives suppressing doubts for fear of losing their relationships with friends and relatives.[99] Penton describes the system of judicial committees and the threat of expulsion as the ultimate control mechanism among the Witnesses;[100] Holden claims that shunning not only rids the community of defilement, but deters others from dissident behavior.[15] Sociologist Ronald Lawson has also noted that the group allows little room for independence of thought, and no toleration of doctrinal diversity. He said those who deviate from official teachings are readily expelled and shunned.[101]

Watch Tower Society publications defend the practice of expelling and shunning those who "promote false teaching", claiming such individuals must be quarantined to prevent the spread of their "spiritual infection".[102] They have cited a dictionary definition of apostasy ("renunciation of a religious faith, abandonment of a previous loyalty") to rule that an individual who begins affiliating with another religious organization has disassociated from the Witnesses, warranting their shunning to protect the spiritual cleanness of the Witness congregation on the basis of the reference in 1 John 2:19 that those who leave Christianity are "not of our sort".[103] An individual's acceptance of a blood transfusion is similarly deemed as evidence of disassociation.[104] They say Witnesses also obey the "strong counsel" at 1 Corinthians 5:11 that Christians should "quit mixing in company" with people who unrepentantly reject certain scriptural standards.[105]

The Witnesses' judicial process has also been criticized. Hearings take place in secret,[100] with judicial committees filling the roles of judge, jury and prosecutor.[90] According to Franz, witnesses may present evidence but are not permitted to remain for the discussion.[106] Critics Heather and Gary Botting have claimed that Witnesses accused of an offence warranting expulsion are presumed guilty until found innocent. They say the onus is on the accused to prove their innocence and if they make no attempt to do so—by failing to appear at a hearing set by the judicial committee—they are assumed to be guilty and unrepentant.[107]

When a decision is made regarding expulsion, an announcement is made that the person is "no longer one of Jehovah's Witnesses" without any elaboration, at which point shunning is immediate. Neither testimony nor evidence in support of the judicial decision are provided. Congregation members are told to accept the rulings without question and Witnesses who refuse to abide by the decision may themselves suffer expulsion.[100] Members are forbidden to talk with the expelled member, removing any opportunity for the person to discuss or explain their actions.[106][108] Penton claims judicial committee members and the Watch Tower Society frequently ignore established procedures when dealing with troublesome individuals, conspiring to have them expelled in violation of Society rules.[109] Critics claim that Witness policies encourage an informer system to report to elders Witnesses suspected of having committed an act that could warrant expulsion, including deviating from organizational policies and teachings.[110][111]

Criticism has also been directed at the 1981 change of policy[112] that directed that persons who disassociate from (formally leave) the group were to be treated as though they were disfellowshipped.[113][114] Holden says that as a result, those who do leave are seldom allowed a dignified exit.[15] Heather and Gary Botting claim inactive Witnesses are often pressured to either become active or to disassociate themselves by declaring they no longer accept key Watch Tower Society doctrines.[107]



Jehovah's Witnesses reject transfusions of whole allogenic blood and its primary components (red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and plasma), and transfusions of stored autologous blood or its primary components. As a doctrine, Jehovah's Witnesses do not reject transfusion of whole autologous blood so long as it is not stored prior to surgery (e.g. peri-operative extraction and transfusion of autologous blood). This religious position is due to their belief that blood is sacred and represents life in God's eyes. Jehovah's Witnesses understand scriptures such as Leviticus 17:10–14 (which speaks of not eating blood) and Acts 15:29 ("abstain from blood") to include taking blood into the body via a transfusion.[115] Controversy has stemmed, however, from what critics state are inconsistencies in Witness policies on blood, claims that Witness patients are coerced into refusing blood and that Watch Tower literature distorts facts about transfusions and fails to provide information that would allow Witnesses to make an informed decision on the issue.[8]

Fractions and components


In the case of minor fractions derived from blood, each individual is directed to follow their own conscience on whether these are acceptable.[116][117] Consequently, some Jehovah's Witnesses accept the use of blood fractions and others do not. However, fractions that carry out "the key function of a primary component" or make up "a significant portion of that component" are not permitted.[118]

Such a stance of dividing blood into major components and minor fractions rather than either accepting all blood or requiring all blood components to be poured out onto the ground has led to criticism from organizations such as the Associated Jehovah's Witnesses for Reform on Blood.[119] Witnesses respond that blood as the fluid per se is not the real issue. They say the real issue is respect and obedience regarding blood, which they perceive as being God's personal property.[120][121] Members are allowed to eat meat that still contains small traces of blood remaining. Once blood is drained from an animal, the respect has been shown to God and then a person can eat the meat. Jehovah's Witnesses view of meat and blood is therefore different from the Jewish view that goes to great lengths to remove even minor traces of blood.[122][123]

According to lawyer Kerry Louderback-Wood, a former Jehovah's Witness,[124] the Watch Tower Society misrepresents the scope of allowed fractions. If taken together, they "total the entire volume of blood they came from".[125] An example of this can be seen in blood plasma, which consists of 90–96% water. The remaining amount consists mainly of albumin, globulins, fibrinogen and coagulation factors. These four fractions are allowable for use, but only if taken separately. Raymond Franz has likened this to banning the eating of a ham and cheese sandwich but allowing the eating of bread, ham and cheese separately.[126]

Storing and donation


Jehovah's Witnesses believe that storing blood violates direction from the Bible to 'pour blood out onto the ground'. They do not donate blood except for uses they have individually pre-approved.[127] However, they are told that acceptance of blood fractions from donated blood is a matter of conscience. A 2006 issue of Jehovah's Witnesses' newsletter Our Kingdom Ministry stated, "Although [Jehovah's Witnesses] do not donate or store their own blood for transfusion purposes, some procedures or tests involving an individual's blood are not so clearly in conflict with Bible principles. Therefore, each individual should make a conscientious decision" [emphasis added].[128] Raymond Franz has challenged these policies because acceptable blood fractions can only be derived from stored blood provided by donors.[129]


Regardless of the medical considerations, Jehovah Witnesses advocate that physicians should uphold the right of a patient to choose what treatments they do or do not accept (though a Witness is subject to religious sanctions if they exercise their right to choose a blood transfusion).[130] Accordingly, US courts tend not to hold physicians responsible for adverse health effects that a patient incurred out of his or her own requests.[115] However, the point of view that physicians must, in all circumstances, abide by the religious wishes of the patients is not acknowledged by all jurisdictions, such as was determined in a case involving Jehovah's Witnesses in France.

The situation has been controversial, particularly in the case of children. In the United States, many physicians will agree to explore and exhaust all non-blood alternatives in the treatment of children at the request of their legal guardians. Some state laws require physicians to administer blood-based treatment to minors if it is their professional opinion that it is necessary to prevent immediate death or severe permanent damage.[citation needed]

Even when an adult's life is at stake, some philosophers argue that since blood refusal is based on irrational beliefs, the patient's decision may be challenged.[131]

Kerry Louderback-Wood has claimed that Jehovah's Witnesses' legal corporations are potentially liable to significant claims for compensation if the organization misrepresents the medical risks of blood transfusions. Wood claims that constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion do not remove the legal responsibility that every person or organization has regarding misrepresenting secular fact.[132]

Animal blood


The Watchtower has stated that "Various medical products have been obtained from biological sources, either animal or human.... Such commercialization of ... blood is hardly tempting for true Christians, who guide their thinking by God's perfect law. Our Creator views blood as sacred, representing God-given life ... blood removed from a creature was to be poured out on the ground, disposed of."[133]

Reporting of sexual abuse


Former Jehovah's Witness Bill Bowen, founder of Silentlambs, accuses Jehovah's Witnesses of employing organizational policies of not reporting sexual abuse cases to authorities to protect the organization's reputation.[134] The Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance stated that the consequence of keeping the cases secrets is that "there is a very high probability that the abuse will continue."[135] Some victims of sexual abuse have asserted that when reporting abuse they were ordered to maintain silence by their local elders to avoid embarrassment to both the accused and the organization.[136][137][138][139][140]

The movement's official policy on child protection, which discusses the procedures for reporting child sexual abuse, states that elders obey all legal requirements for reporting sex offenders, including reporting uncorroborated or unsubstantiated allegations where required by law. Elders are to discipline pedophiles in the congregation. Victims are permitted to notify the authorities if they wish to do so.[141][142]

While a Witness may lose congregation privileges following a single credible accusation of abuse,[143] Jehovah's Witnesses claim to be scripturally obliged to require corroboration before applying their severest forms of congregational discipline.[144] If there is not an actual second witness to an incident of abuse, a congregation judicial committee will accept medical or police reports, or a witness to a separate but similar incident as such a second witness against a member accused of sexual abuse.[145][146][147]

Views on mental health


Jehovah's Witnesses have been criticized for traditionally viewing mental illness as a symptom of spiritual weakness or a sign of Satan's influence, which implies that they may prefer the guidance of elders to psychiatric and psychological treatment.[148][149] They may also hesitate to seek help from mental health professionals because of their tendency to avoid relationships with people outside the denomination.[148][149] However, in recent years the Watch Tower Society has acknowledged that "mental-health professionals can treat many mental-health disorders successfully" and recommended that readers "follow the treatment prescribed by qualified mental-health professionals."[150][149]

Increased mental health risks among Jehovah's Witnesses may be associated with the authoritarian nature of the organization, internal handling of physical and sexual abuse allegations, and the treatment of sexuality and homosexuality as sin.[148] The patriarchal attitudes and organizational structures of the denomination may also contribute to mental health issues.[151] Various mental health professionals have also noted the negative impact of the practice of shunning of those who are expelled or who voluntary leave the denomination.[148][149][92]

No study shows a direct positive correlation between membership of Jehovah's Witnesses and the propensity to develop mental disorders, although that hypothesis has occasionally surfaced in medical and psychological literature[152][148][151] and in anti-cult movement literature.[153]

Activist groups


JZ Help Association


The JZ Help association is a non-profit organization located in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy. It reports on what it considers to constitute "human rights violations" within the Jehovah's Witnesses organization, and offers psychological and legal support to people who wish to leave the denomination.[154] It also aims to protect family relationships against discrimination or exclusion when leaving the religion.[155]

In 2015, Jehovah's Witnesses in Switzerland denounced cult expert Dr. Regina Spiess for "defamation" following a press release and an interview in Tages-Anzeiger. In July 2019, the Zurich District Court acquitted Spiess. The cult expert received legal compensation of 20,500 francs, and personal compensation of 4,000 francs.[156]

Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses

The Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses, in its first public presentation in 2019, at the 5th National Meeting on Sects, organized by the Ibero-American Association for the Investigation of Psychological Abuse (AIIAP) in Zaragoza
The Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses, in its first public presentation in 2019, at the 5th National Meeting on Sects, organized by the Ibero-American Association for the Investigation of Psychological Abuse (AIIAP) in Zaragoza, Spain

The Spanish Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses (AEVTJ) was founded in Spain in 2019 by former members of the denomination. The association denounces the denomination for what it considers structural and institutionalized psychological abuse by Jehovah's Witnesses. The association was registered with the National Registry of Associations of the Ministry of the Interior.[157][158]

The association investigates complaints about authoritarian control, marginalization, discrimination against women, sexual discrimination (for example, homophobia and transphobia), and Jehovah's Witnesses' criticism of other religious institutions.[159] The association notes that ostracism practiced by Jehovah's Witnesses can lead to extreme loneliness in former members, particularly due to having close relationships only within the denomination from a young age, and that in some cases this may lead to depression or suicide.[160][161] The association also accuses the denomination of carrying out its own judicial system parallel to those of the state, and of hiding or hindering reports of child abuse and rape.[162][163] The association's website states:

In Spain, more and more, we former followers dare to publicly denounce their coercive practices, which range from the emotional and personal pressure of their followers, lack of dignity, the right to honor and privacy, through ostracism, to the defense of an unappealable truth that violates the rights and dignity of women along with the rest of groups of sexual diversity.[164]

In response to the association's activities, Jehovah's Witnesses in Spain filed several lawsuits against members of the AEVTJ, which are ongoing.[165][166][167]

Argentine Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses


The Argentine Association of Victims of Jehovah's Witnesses (AAVTJ) was founded in Argentina as part of an international initiative to call attention to complaints of economic fraud and the cover-up of sexual abuse by the Jehovah's Witnesses organization.[168] On July 26, 2023, the association held a 'Memorial Day' in Buenos Aires in memory of 'victims of the Watchtower', denouncing practices of Jehovah's Witnesses that the association considers coercive.[169]

Ibero-American Network for the Study of Sects


The Ibero-American Network for the Study of Sects (RIES) was formed in 2005 by Spanish and Ibero-American Catholics, experts and scholars studying sects and new religious movements, including Jehovah's Witnesses.[170][171]

LIBERADOS Association


The LIBERADOS Association was formed in Spain in 2009 to help people "affected by the sectarian doctrines of Jehovah's Witnesses", focusing on Jehovah's Witnesses' interpretations of various biblical texts, and potentially harmful impacts—such as opposition to blood transfusions—that the Jehovah's Witnesses denomination may have on its members.[172][173]

Doctrinal criticisms


Failed predictions


Central to Jehovah's Witnesses' beliefs are their interpretations of the second coming of Christ, the millennium and the kingdom of God. Watch Tower Society publications have made, and continue to make, predictions about world events they believe were prophesied in the Bible.[174] Some of those early predictions were described as "established truth",[175] and beyond any doubt.[176] Witnesses are told to "be complete in accepting the visible organization's direction in every aspect" and that there is no need to question what God tells them through his Word and organization since love "believes all things".[3][177][178] If a member advocates views different from what appears in print, they face expulsion.[179][180][181]

Failed predictions that were either explicitly stated or strongly implied, particularly linked to dates in 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925 and 1975, have led to the alteration or abandonment of some teachings. The Society's publications have at times suggested that members had previously "read into the Watch Tower statements that were never intended"[182] or that the beliefs of members were "based on wrong premises".[183] According to Professor Edmond Gruss, other failed predictions were ignored, and replaced with new predictions; for example, in the book, The Finished Mystery (1917), events were applied to the years 1918 to 1925 that earlier had been held to occur prior to 1914. When the new interpretations also did not transpire, the 1926 edition of the book changed the statements and removed the dates.[184]

Raymond Franz, a former member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, has cited publications that claimed God has used Jehovah's Witnesses as a collective prophet.[185] Professor James A. Beverley, along with others, has accused the movement of false prophecy for making those predictions, particularly because of assertions in some cases that the predictions were beyond doubt or had been approved by God, but describes its record of telling the future as "pathetic".[186][187][188][189] Beverley says the Watch Tower Society has passed judgment on others who have falsely predicted the end of the world (he cites a 1968 Awake! article that says other groups were "guilty of false prophesying" after having "predicted an 'end to the world', even announcing a specific date").[190][191]

The Watch Tower Society rejects accusations that it is a false prophet.[192][193] It admits its explanations of Bible prophecy are not infallible[194][195][196][197] and that its predictions are not claimed explicitly as "the words of Jehovah".[192] It states that some of its expectations have needed adjustment because of eagerness for God's kingdom, but that those adjustments are no reason to "call into question the whole body of truth".[198] Raymond Franz claims that the Watch Tower Society tries to evade its responsibility when citing human fallibility as a defense, adding that the Society represents itself as God's appointed spokesman, and that throughout its history has made many emphatic predictions. Franz adds that the organization's eagerness for the Millennium does not give it license to impugn the motives of those who fail to accept its predictions.[178]

George D. Chryssides has suggested widespread claims that Witnesses "keep changing the dates" are a distortion and misunderstanding of Watch Tower Society chronology. He argues that, although there have been failures in prophetic speculation, the changing views and dates of the Jehovah's Witnesses are more largely attributable to changed understandings of biblical chronology than to failed predictions. Chryssides states, "For the Jehovah's Witnesses prophecy serves more as a way of discerning a divine plan in human history than a means to predicting the future."[199]

Predictions (by date of publication) include:

  • 1877: Christ's kingdom would hold full sway over the earth in 1914; the Jews, as a people, would be restored to God's favor; the "saints" would be carried to heaven.[200]
  • 1891: 1914 would be "the farthest limit of the rule of imperfect men".[201]
  • 1904: "World-wide anarchy" would follow the end of the Gentile Times in 1914.[202]
  • 1916: World War I would terminate in Armageddon and the rapture of the "saints".[203]
  • 1917: In 1918, Christendom would go down as a system to oblivion and be succeeded by revolutionary governments. God would "destroy the churches wholesale and the church members by the millions". Church members would "perish by the sword of war, revolution and anarchy". The dead would lie unburied. In 1920 all earthly governments would disappear, with worldwide anarchy prevailing.[204]
  • 1920: Messiah's kingdom would be established in 1925 and bring worldwide peace. God would begin restoring the earth. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and other faithful patriarchs would be resurrected to perfect human life and be made princes and rulers, the visible representatives of the New Order on earth. Those who showed themselves obedient to God would never die.[205]
  • 1922: The anti-typical "jubilee" that would mark God's intervention in earthly affairs would take place "probably the fall" of 1925.[206]
  • 1925: God's restoration of Earth would begin "shortly after" October 1, 1925. Jerusalem would be made the world's capital. Resurrected "princes" such as Abel, Noah, Moses and John the Baptist would give instructions to their subjects around the world by radio, and airplanes would transport people to and from Jerusalem from all parts of the globe in just "a few hours".[207]
  • 1938: Armageddon was too close for marriage or child bearing.[208]
  • 1941: There were only "months" remaining until Armageddon.[209]
  • 1942: Armageddon was "immediately before us".[210]
  • 1957: Armageddon was so near that "most of the boys and girls today will not have the opportunity to waste their youth and prime of life ... According to God's timing the calamity of the universal war of Armageddon will strike them down while yet in their youth and prime of life."[211]
  • 1961: Awake! magazine stated that Armageddon "will come in the twentieth century.... This generation will see its fulfillment."[212]
  • 1966: It would be 6000 years since man's creation in the fall of 1975 and it would be "appropriate" for Christ's thousand-year reign to begin at that time.[213] Time was "running out, no question about that".[214] The "immediate future" was "certain to be filled with climactic events ... within a few years at most", the final parts of Bible prophecy relating to the "last days" would undergo fulfillment as Christ's reign began.
  • 1967: The end-time period (beginning in 1914) was claimed to be so far advanced that the time remaining could "be compared, not just to the last day of a week, but rather, to the last part of that day".[215]
  • 1968: No one could say "with certainty" that the battle of Armageddon would begin in 1975, but time was "running out rapidly" with "earthshaking events" soon to take place.[216] In March 1968 there was a "short period of time left", with "only about ninety months left before 6000 years of man's existence on earth is completed".[217]
  • 1969: The existing world order would not last long enough for young people to grow old; the world system would end "in a few years". Young Witnesses were told not to bother pursuing tertiary education for this reason.[218][219]
  • 1971: The "battle in the day of Jehovah" was described as beginning "[s]hortly, within our twentieth century".[220]
  • 1974: There was just a "short time remaining before the wicked world's end" and Witnesses were commended for selling their homes and property to "finish out the rest of their days in this old system in the pioneer service" (i.e., fulltime evangelism).[221]
  • 1984: There were "many indications" that "the end" was closer than the end of the 20th century.[222]
  • 1989: The Watchtower asserted that Christian missionary work begun in the first century would "be completed in our 20th century".[223] When the magazine was republished in bound volumes, the phrase "in our 20th century" was replaced with the less specific "in our day".

Changes of doctrine

History of Eschatological Doctrine
Last Days begin Start of Christ's Presence Christ made King Resurrection of 144,000 Judgment of Religion Separating Sheep & Goats Great Tribulation
1879–1920 1799 1874 1878 during Millennium 1914, 1915, 1918, 1920
1920–1923 1914 1878 1878 1925
1923–1925 during Christ's presence
1925–1927 within generation of 1914
1927–1929 1918
1929–1930 1914
1930–1966 1914 1919
1966–1975 1975?
1975–1995 within generation of 1914
1995–present during Great Tribulation imminent

Although Watch Tower Society literature claims the Society's founder, Charles Taze Russell, was directed by God's Holy Spirit, through which he received "flashes of light",[224] it has substantially altered doctrines since its inception and abandoned many of Russell's teachings.[225] Many of the changes have involved biblical chronology that had earlier been claimed as beyond question.[226][227][228][229][230] The Watch Tower asserted in 1922: "We affirm that Scripturally, scientifically, and historically, present-truth chronology is correct beyond a doubt." (italics in original).[231] Watch Tower Society publications state that doctrinal changes result from a process of "progressive revelation", in which God gradually reveals his will.[232][233]

  • Date of beginning of Christ's kingdom rule. Russell taught that Jesus had become king in April 1878.[234][235] In 1920, the Watch Tower Society altered the date to 1914.[236]
  • Date of resurrection of anointed Christians. After the failure of predictions that Christ's chosen "saints" would be carried away to heaven in 1878,[237] Russell developed the teaching that those "dying in the Lord" from 1878 forward would have an immediate heavenly resurrection.[238] The Watch Tower confirmed the doctrine in 1925,[239] but two years later asserted this date was wrong[240] and that the beginning of the instant resurrection to heaven for faithful Christians was from 1918.[241]
  • Identity of "faithful and wise servant". Russell initially believed the "faithful and wise servant" of Matthew 24:45 was "every member of this body of Christ ... the whole body individually and collectively".[242] By 1886 he had altered his view and began explaining it was a person, not the Christian church.[243] Russell accepted claims by Bible Students that he was that "servant"[244][245][246] and in 1909 described as his "opponents" those who would apply the term "faithful and wise servant" to "all the members of the church of Christ" rather than to an individual.[247] By 1927 the Watch Tower Society was teaching that it was "a collective servant".[248]
  • Great Pyramid as a "stone witness" of God. Russell wrote in 1910 that God had the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt built as a testimony to the truth of the Bible and proof of its chronology identifying the "last days".[249][250] In 1928 The Watch Tower rejected the doctrine and claimed the Pyramid had been built under the direction of Satan.[251]
  • Beginning of the "last days". From the earliest issues of the Watch Tower, Russell promoted the belief that the "last days" had begun in 1799 and would end in 1914.[252] As late as 1927 and 1928 Watch Tower publications were still claiming the last days had begun in 1799.[253][254] Then in 1929, the beginning of the last days was changed to 1914.[255]
  • Date of Christ's invisible presence. From 1879 until 1929, the Watch Tower Society taught that Jesus 'presence' had begun in 1874,[256][257] stating in 1922 that the selection of 1874 was "indisputable".[230][258] In 1930 the Society moved the event to 1914.[259][260]
  • Jews' role in God's Kingdom. Russell followed the view of Nelson H. Barbour, who believed that in 1914 Christ's kingdom would take power over all the earth and the Jews, as a people, would be restored to God's favor.[261] In 1889 Russell wrote that with the completion of the "Gentile Times" in 1914, Israel's "blindness" would subside and they would convert to Christianity.[262] The book Life (1929) noted that the return of Jews to Palestine signaled that the end was very close, because Jews would "have the favors first and thereafter all others who obey the Lord" under God's restoration of his kingdom.[263] In 1932 that belief was abandoned and from that date the Watch Tower Society taught that Witnesses alone were the Israel of God.[264]
  • Identity of the "superior authorities". Russell taught that the "superior authorities" of Romans 13:1, to whom Christians had to show subjection and obedience, were governmental authorities. In 1929 The Watch Tower discarded this view, stating that the term referred only to God and Christ, and saying the change of doctrine was evidence of "advancing light" of truth shining forth to God's chosen people.[265] In 1952, The Watchtower stated that the words of Romans 13 "could never have applied to the political powers of Caesar's world as wrongly claimed by the clergy of Christendom",[266] and in 1960 The Watchtower described the earlier view as a factor that had caused the Bible Student movement to be "unclean" in God's eyes during the 1914–1918 period. Two years later, in 1962, The Watchtower reverted to Russell's initial doctrine.[265]
  • Identity and function of the Governing Body. Frequent mentions of the term "Governing Body" began in Watch Tower Society literature in the 1970s.[267] The Governing Body was initially identified as the Watch Tower Society's seven-member board of directors.[268] However, at the time, the board played no role in establishing Watchtower doctrines, and all such decisions since the Society's origins had been made by the Society's president.[269][270] A 1923 Watch Tower noted that Russell alone directed the policy and course of the Society "without regard to any other person on earth"[271] and both his successors, Rutherford and Knorr, also acted alone in establishing Watch Tower doctrines. An organizational change on January 1, 1976, for the first time gave the Governing Body the power to rule on doctrines[272] and become the ruling council of Jehovah's Witnesses.[273] Despite this, The Watchtower in 1971 claimed that a Governing Body of anointed Christians had existed since the 19th century to govern the affairs of God's anointed people.[274]
  • Treatment of disfellowshipped persons. In the 1950s when disfellowshipping became common, Witnesses were to have nothing to do with expelled members, not conversing with or acknowledging them.[275] Family members of expelled individuals were permitted occasional "contacts absolutely necessary in matters pertaining to family interests", but could not discuss spiritual matters with them.[276] In 1974 The Watchtower, acknowledging some unbalanced Witnesses had displayed unkind, inhumane and possibly cruel attitudes to those expelled,[277] relaxed restrictions on family contact, allowing families to choose for themselves the extent of association,[278] including whether or not to discuss some spiritual matters.[279] In 1981, a reversal of policy occurred, with Witnesses instructed to avoid all spiritual interaction with disfellowshipped ones, including with close relatives.[280] Witnesses were instructed not to greet disfellowshipped persons.[280][281][282] Parents were permitted to care for the physical needs of a disfellowshipped minor child; ill parents or physically or emotionally ill child could be accepted back into the home "for a time". Witnesses were instructed not to eat with disfellowshipped relatives and were warned that emotional influence could soften their resolve.[283] In 1980 the Witnesses' Brooklyn headquarters advised traveling overseers that a person need not be promoting "apostate views" to warrant disfellowshipping; it advised that "appropriate judicial action" be taken against a person who "continues to believe the apostate ideas and rejects what he has been provided" through The Watchtower.[284] The rules on shunning were extended in 1981 to include those who had resigned from the group voluntarily.[285][286] In 2024, the leadership replaced the term disfellowshipping with removal from the congregation,[287] and decided that members may invite shunned individuals to congregation meetings or offer brief greetings at meetings, unless the individual is deemed to be an apostate.[288]
  • Fall of "Babylon the Great". Russell taught that the fall of the "world empire of false religion" had taken place in 1878 and predicted "Babylon's" complete destruction in 1914.[289] The Society claimed in 1917 that religion's final destruction would take place in 1918, explaining that God would destroy churches "wholesale" and that "Christendom shall go down as a system to oblivion."[290] In 1988 the Watch Tower Society claimed that release from prison in 1919 of senior Watchtower figures marked the fall of Babylon "as far as having any captive hold on God's people was concerned",[291] with her "final destruction" "into oblivion, never to recover", expected "in the near future".[292]

United Nations association


Jehovah's Witnesses believe that the United Nations is one of the 'superior authorities' that exist by God's permission, and that it serves a purpose in maintaining order, but do not support it politically and do not consider it to be the means to achieve peace and security. Jehovah's Witnesses also believe that the United Nations is the "image of the wild beast" of Revelation 13:1–18, and the second fulfilment of the "abominable thing that causes desolation" from Matthew 24:15; that it will be the means for the devastation of organized false religion worldwide;[293][294] and that, like all other political powers, it will be destroyed and replaced by God's heavenly kingdom.[295] Jehovah's Witnesses have denounced other religious organizations for having offered political support to the UN.[296]

On October 8, 2001, an article was published in the British Guardian newspaper questioning the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society's registration as a non-governmental organization (NGO) with the United Nations Department of Public Information and accusing the Watch Tower Society of hypocrisy.[297] Within days of the article's publication, the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society submitted a formal request for disassociation, removing all association with the United Nations Department of Public Information,[298] and released a letter stating that the reason for becoming associated with the United Nations Department of Information (DPI) was to access their facilities, and that they had not been aware of the change in language contained in the criteria for NGO association.[299] However, when the Watch Tower Society sought NGO association, "the organization agreed to meet criteria for association, including support and respect of the principles of the Charter of the United Nations", acknowledging that the purpose of membership is to "promote knowledge of the principles and activities of the United Nations".[300]

Fall of Jerusalem


Jehovah's Witnesses assert that Jerusalem was destroyed by the Babylonians in 607 BC and completely uninhabited for exactly seventy years. This date is critical to their selection of October 1914 for the arrival of Christ in kingly power—2520 years after October 607 BC.[301][302] Non-Witness sources do not support 607 BC for the event, placing the destruction of Jerusalem within a year of 587 BC, twenty years later.[302][303] Jehovah's Witnesses believe that periods of seventy years mentioned in the books of Jeremiah and Daniel refer to the Babylonian exile of Jews. They also believe that the gathering of Jews in Jerusalem, shortly after their return from Babylon, officially ended the exile in the Jewish month of Tishrei. According to the Watch Tower Society, October 607 BC is derived by counting back seventy years from Tishrei of 537 BC, based on its assertion that Cyrus' decree to release the Jews during his first regnal year "may have been made in late 538 B.C. or before March 4–5, 537 B.C".[304][305] Secular sources assign the return to either 538 BC or 537 BC.[306][307][308][309][310]

In The Gentile Times Reconsidered: Chronology & Christ's Return, Carl O. Jonsson, a former Witness, presents eighteen lines of evidence to support the traditional view of neo-Babylonian chronology. He accuses the Watch Tower Society of deliberately misquoting sources in an effort to bolster its position.[311] The Watch Tower Society claims that biblical chronology is not always compatible with secular sources, and that the Bible is superior. It claims that secular historians make conclusions about 587 BC based on incorrect or inconsistent historical records, but accepts those sources that identify Cyrus' capture of Babylon in 539 BC, claiming it has no evidence of being inconsistent and hence can be used as a pivotal date.[304][312][313]

While a member of the denomination, Rolf Furuli, a former lecturer in Semitic languages, presented a study of 607 BC in support of Jehovah's Witnesses' conclusions in Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, and Persian Chronology Compared with the Chronology of the Bible, Volume 1: Persian Chronology and the Length of the Babylonian Exile of the Jews.[314] Lester L. Grabbe, professor of Hebrew Bible and Early Judaism at the University of Hull, said of Furuli's study: "Once again we have an amateur who wants to rewrite scholarship.... F. shows little evidence of having put his theories to the test with specialists in Mesopotamian astronomy and Persian history."[315] (In 2020, Furuli left the denomination but maintained that its chronological interpretations are correct.[316][317])

The relative positions of the moon, stars and planets indicated in the Babylonian astronomical diary VAT 4956 are used by secular historians to establish 568 BC as the thirty-seventh year of Nebuchadnezzar's reign.[318] The Watch Tower Society claims that unnamed researchers have confirmed that the positions of the moon and stars on the tablet are instead consistent with astronomical calculations for 588 BC; the Society claims that the planets mentioned in the tablet cannot be clearly identified.[319] The Watch Tower Society's article cites David Brown as stating, "some of the signs for the names of the planets and their positions are unclear".[319] However, Brown indicates that the Babylonians also had unique names for the known planets,[320] and Jonsson confirms that the unique names are those used in VAT 4956.[321]



The Watch Tower Society teaches a combination of gap creationism and day-age creationism, with an extended period between the initial creation of the universe and the subsequent 'creative days' in relation to the earth, which are said to have taken "thousands of years".[322] It dismisses Young Earth creationism as "unscriptural and unbelievable",[323] and states that Jehovah's Witnesses "are not creationists" on the basis that they do not believe the earth was created in six literal days.[324][325]

Watch Tower Society publications attempt to refute the theory of evolution, in favor of divine creation.[326][327] The Watch Tower Society's views of evolution have met with criticism typical of objections to evolution. Gary Botting described his own difficulty as a Jehovah's Witness to reconcile creation with simple observations of species diversification, especially after discussions with J.B.S. Haldane in India.[328]

The Society's 1985 publication, Life—How Did it Get Here? By Evolution or by Creation? is criticized for its dependency on the book The Neck of the Giraffe authored by Francis Hitching,[citation needed] which is quoted five times. The book presents Hitching—a TV writer and paranormalist with no scientific credentials—as an evolutionist and scientist.[329] Richard Dawkins also criticizes the book for implying that "chance" is the only alternative to deliberate design, stating, "[T]he candidate solutions to the riddle of improbability are not, as falsely implied, design and chance. They are design and natural selection."[330]

New World Translation criticisms


The Watch Tower Society has been criticized for its refusal to reveal the names and academic credentials of the translators of its New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures (NWT).[331] The Society has claimed members of the NWT's translation committee wished to remain anonymous in order to exalt only the name of God,[332] The Watchtower stating that the educational qualifications of the translators were unimportant and that "the translation itself testifies to their qualifications".[333] Raymond Franz, a former member of the Governing Body, has claimed that of the four men he says constituted the committee, only one—its principal translator, his uncle Frederick Franz—had sufficient knowledge of biblical languages to have attempted the project.[334] Frederick Franz had studied Greek for two years and was self-taught in Hebrew.[335]

Much criticism of the NWT involves the rendering of certain texts considered to be biased towards specific Witness practices and doctrines.[331][336][337][338][339][340] These include the use of "torture stake" instead of "cross" throughout the New Testament;[331] the rendering of John 1:1, with the insertion of the indefinite article ("a") in its rendering to give "the Word was a god";[331][341] Romans 10:10, which uses the term "public declaration", which may reinforce the imperative to engage in public preaching;[331] John 17:3, which used the term "taking in knowledge" rather than "know" to suggest that salvation is dependent on ongoing study,[331] and the placement of the comma in Luke 23:43, which affects the timing of the fulfillment of Jesus' promise to the thief at Calvary.[342]

Also criticized is the NWT's insertion of the name Jehovah 237 times in the New Testament without extant New Testament Greek manuscript evidence that the name existed there.[343][344][345] Watch Tower publications have claimed that the name was "restored" on a sound basis, stating that when New Testament writers quote earlier Old Testament scriptures containing the Tetragrammaton (יהוה), "the translator has the right to render Kyrios ("LORD") as Jehovah."[346] The NWT mentions twenty-seven other translations that have similarly rendered Kyrios as a form of the name Jehovah, stating that there is only one verse where the NWT does so without agreement from other translations.[347]

The Society has claimed its translation "courageously restores God's name, Jehovah, to its proper place in the Biblical text, is free from the bias of religious traditionalism, and ... gives the literal meaning of God's Word as accurately as possible."[348] Jason BeDuhn, associate professor of religious studies at Northern Arizona University, in Flagstaff, Arizona, compared nine major translations for accuracy. He stated that whilst there are "a handful of examples of bias in the [New World Translation (NW)]", that "most of the differences are due to the greater accuracy of the NW as a literal, conservative translation of the original expressions of the New Testament writers." He also wrote that the NWT's introduction of the name "Jehovah" into the New Testament 237 times was "not accurate translation by the most basic principle of accuracy".[349] He concluded that "the NW and [another translation] are not bias free, and they are not perfect translations. But they are remarkably good translations ... often better than [the other six translations analyzed]."[350] In his rebuttal, Thomas Howe strongly criticizes BeDuhn's positive review of the New World Translation, stating that the main goal of BeDuhn's book is to deny the deity of Christ.[351]

See also



  1. ^ Holden 2002, p. 22.
  2. ^ ""Case Study 29: Transcript (day 155)", page 6, Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, July 2015". Archived from the original on November 20, 2017. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Following Faithful Shepherds with Life in View". The Watchtower. October 1, 1967. p. 591. Make haste to identify the visible theocratic organization of God that represents his king, Jesus Christ. It is essential for life. Doing so, be complete in accepting its every aspect. We cannot claim to love God, yet deny his Word and channel of communication.... Jehovah's visible organization is based firmly on the twelvefold foundation of the apostles of the Lamb with Jesus Christ himself being the foundation cornerstone.(Rev. 21:14,19;Eph 2:20–22) Therefore, in submitting to Jehovah's visible theocratic organization, we must be in full and complete agreement with every feature of its apostolic procedure and requirements.
  4. ^ "Loyal to Christ and His Faithful Slave", The Watchtower, April 1, 2007, page 24, "When we loyally submit to the direction of the faithful slave and its Governing Body, we are submitting to Christ, the slave's Master."
  5. ^ a b Beckford 1975, pp. 89, 95, 103, 120, 204, 221
  6. ^ a b "Questions from Readers". The Watchtower. April 1, 1986. if a Christian (who claims belief in God, the Bible, and Jesus) unrepentantly promotes false teachings, it may be necessary for him to be expelled from the congregation.
  7. ^ "Shepherd the Flock of God". Watch Tower Society. p. 90. If one obstinately is speaking about or deliberately spreading false teachings, this may be or may lead to apostasy. If there is no response after a first and a second admonition, a judicial committee should be formed.
  8. ^ a b Muramoto, O (August 1998). "Bioethics of the refusal of blood by Jehovah's Witnesses: Part 1. Should bioethical deliberation consider dissidents' views?". Journal of Medical Ethics. 24 (4): 223–30. doi:10.1136/jme.24.4.223. PMC 1377670. PMID 9752623.
  9. ^ "Exposing the Devil's Subtle Designs" and "Armed for the Fight Against Wicked Spirits", The Watchtower, January 15, 1983
  10. ^ "Serving Jehovah Shoulder to Shoulder", The Watchtower, August 15, 1981, page 28.
  11. ^ "Jehovah's Theocratic Organization Today", The Watchtower, February 1, 1952, pages 79–81.
  12. ^ "Exposing the Devil's Subtle Designs". The Watchtower. January 15, 1983. p. 27. From the very outset of his rebellion Satan called into question God's way of doing things. He promoted independent thinking.... How is such independent thinking manifested? A common way is by questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization.
  13. ^ "Avoid Independent Thinking". The Watchtower. February 15, 1979. p. 20. In a world where people are tossed about by confusing winds of religious doctrine, Jehovah's people need to be stable, full-grown Christians. (Eph. 4:13, 14) Their position must be steadfast, not shifting quickly because of independent thinking or emotional pressures.
  14. ^ "Building a Firm Foundation in Christ". The Watchtower. May 1, 1964. pp. 277–278. It is through the columns of The Watchtower that Jehovah provides direction and constant Scriptural counsel to his people, and it requires careful study and attention to details in order to apply this information, to get a full understanding of the principles involved, and to assure ourselves of right thinking on these matters. It is in this way that we "are thoroughly able to grasp mentally with all the holy ones" the fullness of our commission and of the preaching responsibility that Jehovah has placed on all Christians as footstep followers of his Son. Any other course would produce independent thinking and cause division.
  15. ^ a b c d Holden 2002, p. 163.
  16. ^ See also Raymond Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, p. 358.
  17. ^ "Will You Heed Jehovah's Clear Warnings?", The Watchtower, July 15, 2011, page 15, "apostates are 'mentally diseased', and they seek to infect others with their disloyal teachings. (1 Tim. 6:3, 4)."
  18. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom (2nd ed.). Commentary Press. pp. 98–100, 104–107, 113. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  19. ^ a b c d R. Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, chapter 6.
  20. ^ Court transcript as cited by Heather & Gary Botting, The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1984, page 67–68, also at Pursuer's Proof: Lord Strachan vs. Douglas Walsh Transcript, Lord Strachan vs. Douglas Walsh, 1954 Archived 2008-10-29 at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ R. Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, chapter 11.
  22. ^ Muramoto, O. (January 6, 2001). "Bioethical aspects of the recent changes in the policy of refusal of blood by Jehovah's Witnesses". BMJ. 322 (7277): 37–39. doi:10.1136/bmj.322.7277.37. PMC 1119307. PMID 11141155.
  23. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom (2nd ed.). Commentary Press. pp. 419–421. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  24. ^ Stevenson, W.C. (1967). Year of Doom 1975: The Inside Story of Jehovah's Witnesses. London: Hutchinson & Co. pp. 33–35. The inevitable result of a person's submitting to (the home Bible study) arrangement is that eventually all his own thoughts will be replaced by the thoughts contained in the book he is studying ... if one were able to watch this person's development ... it would be quite obvious that he was gradually losing all individuality of thought and action.... One of the characteristics of Jehovah's Witnesses is the extraordinary unanimity of thinking on almost every aspect of life ... in view of this there seems to be some justification for the charge that their study methods are in fact a subtle form of indoctrination or brainwashing.
  25. ^ a b Botting, Heather & Gary (1984). The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses. University of Toronto Press. p. 153. ISBN 0-8020-6545-7.
  26. ^ a b R. Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, chapter 16.
  27. ^ "Exposing the Devil's Subtle Designs" and "Armed for the Fight Against Wicked Spirits", Watchtower, January 15, 1983, as cited by Heather and Gary Botting, The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses, 1984, page 92.
  28. ^ "Serving Jehovah Shoulder to Shoulder", The Watchtower, August 15, 1981, page 28, "Jehovah's Theocratic Organization Today", The Watchtower, February 1, 1952, pages 79–81.
  29. ^ According to Randall Watters, who in 1981 published a pamphlet, "What happened at the world headquarters of Jehovah's Witnesses in the spring of 1980?", cited by Heather and Gary Botting, a former Governing Body member is said to have referred Brooklyn headquarters staff to an organizational handbook containing 1,177 policies and regulations, telling them: "If there are some who feel that they cannot subject themselves to the rules and regulations now in operation, such ones ought to be leaving and not be involved here."
  30. ^ Penton, M. J. (1997). Apocalypse Delayed (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. pp. 107–108, 122, 298.
  31. ^ "Walk With Confidence in Jehovah's Leadership", The Watchtower, June 1, 1985, page 20, "To turn away from Jehovah and his organization, to spurn the direction of 'the faithful and discreet slave', and to rely simply on personal Bible reading and interpretation is to become like a solitary tree in a parched land."
  32. ^ Question box, Our Kingdom Ministry, September 2007.
  33. ^ "Do not be quickly shaken from your reason", Watchtower, March 15, 1986
  34. ^ "At which table are you feeding?" Watchtower, July 1, 1994
  35. ^ Watchtower, May 1, 1984, page 31, as cited by R. Franz, "In Search of Christian Freedom", chapter 12
  36. ^ "Firmly uphold godly teaching", Watchtower, May 1, 2000, page 9.
  37. ^ Heather & Gary Botting, The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses, University of Toronto Press, 1984, page 143, 153.
  38. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom (2nd ed.). Commentary Press. pp. 449–464. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4., "Loyalty to the organization becomes the touchstone, the criterion, the "bottom line", when it comes to determining whether one is a faithful Christian or not ... to make any organizational loyalty the criterion for judging anyone's Christianity is, then, clearly a perversion of Scripture.... Read the whole of those Scriptures ... nowhere are we taught to put faith in men or in an earthly organization, unquestioningly following its lead ... the entire Bible record is a continual reminder of the danger inherent in that kind of trust."
  39. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom (2nd ed.). Commentary Press. p. 458. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  40. ^ Botting, Heather; Gary Botting (1984). The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses. University of Toronto Press. p. 156. ISBN 0-8020-6545-7.
  41. ^ Ramón, Angie (February 5, 2023). "Casesabuses of Jehovah's Witness Victims on the Rise (Spanish)".
  42. ^ López, David (November 13, 2022). "War in Jehovah's Witnesses: children against parents in the first trial of a religion against its dissidents (Spanish)". El Periódico de España.
  43. ^ "Abusos, suicidio y fin del mundo: ¿Qué ocurre dentro de los Testigos de Jehová?". ELMUNDO (in Spanish). November 22, 2022. Retrieved July 25, 2023.
  44. ^ SÀNCHEZ, GUILLEM (November 16, 2016). "Former Jehovah's Witnesses against the organization's law of silence (Spanish)". Diario de León.
  45. ^ "El infierno de Gabriel en los Testigos de Jehová: "Los abusos sexuales cada vez eran más brutos, a veces vomitaba"". ELMUNDO (in Spanish). February 1, 2023. Retrieved July 25, 2023.
  46. ^ SC (April 8, 2023). "Former Jehovah's Witnesses denounced scams and abuses in front of the Obelisk (Spanish)". Clarín.
  47. ^ Piña, Gloria (July 26, 2022). "Sins without punishment. Hundreds of former Jehovah's Witnesses raise their voices to report abuses (Spanish)". EMEEQUIS.
  48. ^ Rodney Stark; Laurence R. Iannoccone (1997). "Why the Jehovah's Witnesses Grow so Rapidly: A Theoretical Application" (PDF). Journal of Contemporary Religion. 12 (2): 133–157. doi:10.1080/13537909708580796. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 24, 2011. Retrieved December 30, 2008.
  49. ^ Beckford 1975, pp. 89, 95, 103, 120.
  50. ^ Beckford 1975, p. 103.
  51. ^ Beckford 1975, pp. 204, 221.
  52. ^ Alan Rogerson, Millions Now Living Will Never Die, Constable, 1969, page 50.
  53. ^ James A. Beverley, Crisis of Allegiance, Welch Publishing Company, Burlington, Ontario, 1986, ISBN 0-920413-37-4, pages 25–26, 101, "For every passage in Society literature that urges members to be bold and courageous in critical pursuits, there are many others that warn about independent thinking and the peril of questioning the organization.... Fear of disobedience to the Governing Body keeps Jehovah's Witnesses from carefully checking into biblical doctrine or allegations concerning false prophecy, faulty scholarship, and injustice. Witnesses are told not to read books like this one."
  54. ^ "You Must Be Holy Because Jehovah Is Holy", The Watchtower, February 15, 1976, page 124, "Would not a failure to respond to direction from God through his organization really indicate a rejection of divine rulership?"
  55. ^ James A. Beverley, Crisis of Allegiance, Welch Publishing Company, Burlington, Ontario, 1986, ISBN 0-920413-37-4, pages 25–26, 101.
  56. ^ Holden 2002, p. 121.
  57. ^ Holden 2002, p. 30— "At every level of the organisation, those in authority oversee those below them, which means that every Witness is under official surveillance."
  58. ^ Holden 2002, p. 22,32, 150–170.
  59. ^ Holden 2002, p. 67.
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  65. ^ "Who Molds Your Thinking?", The Watchtower, April 1, 1999, page 22, "You have free will. Exercising it, you can choose to respond to Jehovah's molding influence or deliberately reject it. How much better to listen to Jehovah's voice instead of arrogantly asserting, 'No one tells me what to do'!"
  66. ^ J. Gordon Melton, 1992, Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America, p. v, 81–89
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  72. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses in the Divine Purpose, page 96, as cited by R. Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, chapter 4.
  73. ^ Question Box, Our Kingdom Ministry, September 1979, page 4.
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  75. ^ "Righteous requirements", Watchtower, July 1, 1943, pages 204–206, "Jehovah ... has appointed his 'faithful and wise servant, who is his visible mouthpiece.... These expressions of God's will by his King and through his established agency constitute his law or rule of action.... The Lord breaks down our organization instructions further.... He says the requirements for special pioneers shall be 175 hours and 50 back-calls per month ... and for regular pioneers 150 hours.... And for company publishers, he says, 'Let us make a quota of 60 hours and 12 back-calls and at least one study a week for each publisher'. These directions come to us from the Lord through his established agency directing what is required of us.... This expression of the Lord's will should be the end of all controversy.... The Lord through his 'faithful and wise servant' now states to us, Let us cover our territory four times in six months. That becomes our organization instructions and has the same binding force on us that his statement to the Logos had when he said, 'Let us make man in our image'. It is our duty to accept this additional instruction and obey it."
  76. ^ Heather & Gary Botting, The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses, University of Toronto Press, 1984, page 107.
  77. ^ "Saved, Not by Works Alone, But by Undeserved Kindness", The Watchtower, June 1, 2005, pages 17–18.
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  108. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom. Commentary Press. p. 371. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  109. ^ Penton, M. J. (1997). Apocalypse Delayed (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. p. 248.
  110. ^ Raymond Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, Commentary Press, pages 365-385, citing "A Time to Speak – When?", The Watchtower, September 1, 1987.
  111. ^ Osamu Muramoto, "Bioethics of the refusal of blood by Jehovah's Witnesses, Part 1", Journal of Medical Ethics, August 1998.
  112. ^ "Disfellowshiping—How to View It", The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, page 23.
  113. ^ Penton, M. J. (1997). Apocalypse Delayed (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. p. 319.
  114. ^ Franz, Raymond (2002). Crisis of Conscience. Commentary Press. p. 357. ISBN 0-914675-23-0.
  115. ^ a b How Can Blood Save Your Life?. Watch Tower Society. p. 22.
  116. ^ "Be guided by the Living God" (Jun. 15, 2004). The Watchtower
  117. ^ "Questions from readers: Do Jehovah's Witnesses accept any minor fractions of blood?" (Jun. 15, 2000). The Watchtower
  118. ^ Awake! August 2006 box on P. 11
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  120. ^ The Watchtower November 1, 1961, p. 669 Questions From Readers
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  125. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses, Blood Transfusions and the Tort of Misrepresentation, Journal of Church and State Vol 47, Autumn 2005 p. 815
  126. ^ Franz, Raymond. "In Search of Christian Freedom" - Chapter Nine Archived 2006-02-07 at the Wayback Machine. Atlanta: Commentary Press, 1991. ISBN 0-914675-16-8. p.732.
  127. ^ "Questions From Readers", The Watchtower, October 15, 2000, page 31, "Jehovah's Witnesses ... do not donate blood [without preconditions on its use], nor do we store for transfusion our blood that should be 'poured out'. That practice conflicts with God's law. Other procedures or tests involving an individual's own blood are not so clearly in conflict with God's stated principles.... The goal may be to isolate some of a blood component and apply that elsewhere.... A Christian must decide for himself how his own blood will be handled.... Ahead of time, he should obtain from the doctor or technician the facts about what might be done with his blood during the procedure. Then he must decide according to what his conscience permits."
  128. ^ "How Do I View Blood Fractions and Medical Procedures Involving My Own Blood?", Our Kingdom Ministry, November 2006, page 4.
  129. ^ Franz, Raymond. "In Search of Christian Freedom" - Chapter Nine Archived 2006-02-07 at the Wayback Machine. Atlanta: Commentary Press, 1991. Pbk. ISBN 0-914675-16-8. pp.732.
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  132. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses, Blood Transfusions and the Tort of Misrepresentation, Journal of Church and State Vol 47, Autumn 2005
  133. ^ The Watchtower. February 1, 1997, p. 30.
  134. ^ "Bill Bowen, "The History of Silentlambs"". Archived from the original on June 6, 2019. Retrieved May 26, 2017.
  135. ^ "Jehovah's Witnesses (WTS) Handling of Child Sexual Abuse Cases" Archived March 12, 2021, at the Wayback Machine, Religious Tolerance.org Retrieved Mar 3, 2006.
  136. ^ "Another Church Sex Scandal" (Apr. 29, 2003). CBS News.
  137. ^ Cutrer, Corrie (Mar. 5, 2001). "Witness Leaders Accused of Shielding Molesters", Christianity Today.
  138. ^ Channel 9 Sunday, November 2005. Archived 2013-05-03 at the Wayback Machine
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  140. ^ Tubbs, Sharon (August 22, 2002). "Spiritual shunning — When Jehovah's Witnesses excommunicate, or 'disfellowship' a member, even the closest human ties can be severed without question". St. Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on April 30, 2016. William Bowen, a former Jehovahs Witness elder, stands near the Kingdom Hall in Marshall County, Ky., where he worshipped before he was disfellowshipped for criticizing the church's handling of child sex abuse allegations.
  141. ^ "Jehovah's Witnesses and Child Protection". Jehovah's Witnesses official media website. Office of Public Information of Jehovah's Witnesses. Archived from the original on February 12, 2003. Retrieved August 14, 2017. the victim may wish to report thematter to the authorities, and it is his or her absolute right to do so
  142. ^ "Jehovah's Witnesses and Child Protection". Jehovah's Witnesses official media website. Office of Public Information of Jehovah's Witnesses. Archived from the original on June 28, 2003. Retrieved July 11, 2019. There are certainly no sanctions against any congregation member who reports an allegation of child abuse to the authorities
  143. ^ "Let All Things Take Place for Upbuilding", Our Kingdom Ministry, July 2000, page 1
  144. ^ "Comfort for Those With a 'Stricken Spirit'", The Watchtower, November 1, 1995, page 28, "If the [lone] accusation is denied [by the accused], the elders should explain to the accuser that nothing more can be done in a judicial way.... The Bible says that there must be two or three witnesses before judicial action can be taken. (2 Corinthians 13:1; 1 Timothy 5:19)"
  145. ^ "Ex-Elder Challenges Jehovah's Witnesses On Child Abuse". The Washington Post. corroborating evidence can be used instead of a second witness to prove wrongdoing
  146. ^ Public Hearing - Case Study 29 (Day 152) (PDF). Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Australia (Report). p. 67,72. in the absence of a confession or circumstantial evidence or other indicators, would we act judicially on one witness as the courts would do, the answer would be no, and I don't see that changing, in harmony with the scriptures.... Q. Insofar as a second witness is concerned, is that requirement covered by, for example, scientific evidence? A. Certainly. Q. So if there was some external forensic scientific or direct evidence which is not of an observer to the incident, but someone who observes some corroborative aspect to the incident, that would be sufficient, would it? A. The answer is yes ... we, as the case files will show, have disfellowshipped people for being in an inappropriate setting where there is some allegation.
  147. ^ Public Hearing - Case Study 29 (Day 155) (PDF). Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Australia (Report). p. 44,45.
  148. ^ a b c d e Friedson, Meredith L. (April 1, 2015). "Psychotherapy and the Fundamentalist Client: The Aims and Challenges of Treating Jehovah's Witnesses". Journal of Religion and Health. 54 (2): 693–712. doi:10.1007/s10943-014-9946-8. ISSN 1573-6571. PMID 25261980. S2CID 12657420.
  149. ^ a b c d Muramoto, Osamu (2008), Viens, A. M.; Singer, Peter A. (eds.), "Jehovah's Witness bioethics", The Cambridge Textbook of Bioethics, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 416–423, ISBN 978-0-521-69443-8, retrieved January 31, 2022
  150. ^ "What You Should Know About Mental Disorders". Awake!. December 2014.
  151. ^ a b Weishaupt, K. J.; Stensland, M.D. (1997). "Wifely subjection: mental health issues in Jehovah's Witness women". Cultic Studies Journal. 14: 106–44.
  152. ^ Spencer, John (1975). "The Mental Health of Jehovah's Witnesses". The British Journal of Psychiatry. 126 (6): 556–559. doi:10.1192/bjp.126.6.556. ISSN 0007-1250. PMID 1174772. S2CID 19480849.
  153. ^ Bergman, Jerry R. (1992). Jehovah's Witnesses and the problem of mental illness. Clayton, Calif.: Witness Inc.
  154. ^ "JZ Help e.V." JZ Help e.V. Retrieved October 17, 2023.
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  157. ^ "Asociación Española de Víctimas de los Testigos de Jehová".
  158. ^ Presentación de la Asociación Española de Victimas de los testigos de Jehová (in European Spanish), retrieved July 17, 2023
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  160. ^ Frías, David López (November 13, 2022). "Guerra en los Testigos de Jehová: hijos contra padres en el primer juicio de una religión contra sus disidentes". elperiodicodeespana (in Spanish). Retrieved July 17, 2023.
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  162. ^ ""Tuve que contar todos los detalles: ¡Me sentí violada una vez más!"". Diario ABC (in Spanish). December 3, 2022. Retrieved July 17, 2023.
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  165. ^ "Los testigos de Jehová llevan a sus víctimas a los tribunales en España". Aleteia.org | Español - valores con alma para vivir feliz (in Spanish). November 7, 2022. Retrieved July 17, 2023.
  166. ^ "Atacar a los Testigos de Jehová sale caro y en forma de demanda" (in Spanish). November 16, 2022. Retrieved July 17, 2023.
  167. ^ de la Ossa Montes (Col. Nº 1.404), D. Juan; et al. (2022). "Al juzgado de primera instancia de Torrejón de Ardoz que por turno corresponda, demanda de juicio declarativo ordinario, frente a Asociación Española de Victimas de los Testigos de Jehová". Demanda Procesal al juzgado de Primera Instancia de Torrejón de Ardoz. Archived from the original on September 6, 2023. Retrieved October 20, 2023.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link) CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
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  170. ^ Manuel, Guerra Gómez (2005). Diccionario enciclopédico de las sectas. Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos. OCLC 1025511285. Retrieved November 12, 2022.
  171. ^ RIES, Secretaría. "Gabriel, ex testigo de Jehová, vuelve a ser víctima de la secta 4 años después". InfoCatólica (in Spanish). Retrieved September 22, 2023.
  172. ^ EFE, EFE (July 31, 2009). "A los Testigos de Jehová les sale un grano". Público. Archived from the original on September 22, 2023. Retrieved September 22, 2023.
  173. ^ RIES, Secretaría. "Ex-adeptos de sectas dan su testimonio en Televisión Española". RIES. Retrieved September 22, 2023.
  174. ^ Crompton, Robert (1996). Counting the Days to Armageddon. Cambridge: James Clarke & Co. pp. 9, 115. ISBN 0-227-67939-3.
  175. ^ The Time is at Hand, Watch Tower Society, 1889, pages 99: "In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the Times of the Gentiles, we consider it an established truth, that the final end of the kingdoms of this world, and the full establishment of the kingdom of God will be accomplished by A.D. 1914."; cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 193.
  176. ^ In 1892 Zion's Watch Tower stated that God's battle, Armageddon, which was believed to be already under way, would end in October 1914, a date "definitely marked in Scripture" (15 January 1892, page 1355 reprint), and Watch Tower editor Charles Taze Russell declared:
    "We see no reason for changing the figures—nor could we change them if we would. They are, we believe, God's dates, not ours." (The Watchtower, 15 July 1894, page 1677).
    After comparing "unreliable secular chronology" to reliable "Bible chronology", The Watch Tower stated,
    "It was on this line of reckoning [using the chronology of the Bible as an established fact] that the dates 1874, 1914, and 1918 were located; and the Lord has placed the stamp of his seal upon 1914 and 1918 beyond any possibility of erasure.... Using this same measuring line, beginning with the entry ... of Israel into Canaan, and counting the full 70 cycles ..., as clearly indicated by Jehovah's sending of the Jews into Babylon for the full 70 years, it is an easy matter to locate 1925, probably the fall, for the beginning of the antitypical jubilee. There can be no more question about 1925 than there was about 1914.... Looking back we can now easily see that those dates were clearly indicated in Scripture and doubtless intended by the Lord to encourage his people.... That all that some expect to see in 1925 may not transpire that year will not alter the date one whit more than in the other cases." (The Watch Tower, May 15, 1922, p. 150; Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 224).
  177. ^ "The Godly Qualities of Love and Hate". The Watchtower. July 15, 1974. p. 441. Christians have implicit trust in their heavenly Father; they do not question what he tells them through his written Word and organization.
  178. ^ a b Raymond Franz. Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 174, "No less serious is it when a group of men have divided views on predictions related to a certain date and yet present their adherents an outward appearance of united confidence, encouraging those adherents to place unwavering trust in those predictions."
  179. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses Proclaimers of God's Kingdom. p. 629. "people certainly ha[ve] the freedom to believe what they chose. But anyone who publicly or privately advocates views that are divergent from what appears in the publications of an organization, and who does so while claiming to represent that organization, causes division."
  180. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom. Atlanta: Commentary Press. pp. 18–28. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  181. ^ Botting, Heather; Gary Botting (1984). The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses. University of Toronto Press. pp. 66–69. ISBN 0-8020-6545-7.
  182. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses in the Divine Purpose, Watch Tower Society, 1959, page 52.
  183. ^ "A Solid Basis for Confidence", The Watchtower, July 15, 1976, page 440.
  184. ^ Gruss, Edmond C. (1972). The Jehovah's Witnesses and Prophetic Speculation. Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co. pp. 87–88. ISBN 0-87552-306-4.
  185. ^ In Crisis of Conscience, 2002, p. 173, Franz quotes from "They Shall Know That a Prophet Was Among Them" (The Watchtower, April 1, 1972), which states that God had raised Jehovah's Witnesses as "a prophet to help [people], to warn them of dangers and declare things to come". He also cites "Identifying the Right Kind of Messenger" (The Watchtower, May 1, 1997, page 8), which identifies the Witnesses as his "true messengers ... by making the messages he delivers through them come true", in contrast to "false messengers", whose predictions fail. In In Search of Christian Freedom, 2007, he quotes The Nations Shall Know That I Am Jehovah - How? (1971, p. 70, 292), which describes Witnesses as the modern Ezekiel class, "a genuine prophet within our generation". The Watch Tower book noted: "Concerning the message faithfully delivered by the Ezekiel class, Jehovah positively states that it 'must come true' ... those who wait undecided until it does 'come true' will also have to know that a prophet himself had proved to be in the midst of them." He also cites "Execution of the Great Harlot Nears" (The Watchtower, October 15, 1980, p. 17), which claims God gives the Witnesses "special knowledge that others do not have ... advance knowledge about this system's end".
  186. ^ James A. Beverley, Crisis of Allegiance, Welch Publishing Company, Burlington, Ontario, 1986, ISBN 0-920413-37-4, pages 86–91.
  187. ^ Criticisms of statements, such as those found below, are found in a number of books including Penton, M. James (1997) Apocalypse Delayed, University of Toronto Press; Franz, Raymond, In Search of Christian Freedom (2007) Commentary Press; Watters, Randall (2004) Thus Saith Jehovah's Witnesses, Common Sense Publications; Reed, David A. (1990) Index of Watchtower Errors, 1879 to 1989, Baker Books and at websites including Watchtower Information Service Archived 2006-08-26 at the Wayback Machine; Quotes-Watchtower.co.uk Archived November 26, 2020, at the Wayback Machine; Reexamine.Quotes.
  188. ^ Waldeck, Val Jehovah's Witnesses: What do they believe?. Pilgrim Publications SA. ISBN 1-920092-08-0.
  189. ^ Buttrey, John M (2004). Let No One Mislead You. iUniverse. ISBN 0-595-30710-8.
  190. ^ "Awake!, October 8, 1968, p. 23" (PDF). Retrieved December 31, 2016.[permanent dead link]
  191. ^ James A. Beverley, Crisis of Allegiance, Welch Publishing Company, Burlington, Ontario, 1986, ISBN 0-920413-37-4, page 87.
  192. ^ a b "Why So Many False Alarms?", Awake!, March 22, 1993, pages 3–4, footnote.
  193. ^ Reasoning From the Scriptures, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1989, p. 137.
  194. ^ Revelation - Its Grand Climax, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1988, page 9.
  195. ^ March 1, 1904 Zion's Watch Tower p. 67, "We have in the Scriptures what we think is clear testimony respecting that date [1914], but no particulars or dates for the intervening time. It is not our intention to enter upon the role of prophet to any degree, but merely to give below what seems to us rather likely to be the trend of events."
  196. ^ "Views From the Watchtower", Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence, January 1908, "We are not prophesying; we are merely giving our surmises.... We do not even [assert] that there is no mistake in our interpretation of prophesy and our calculations of chronology. We have merely laid these before you, leaving it for each to exercise his own faith or doubt in respect to them."
  197. ^ "Preaching Christ—Through Envy or Goodwill?", The Watchtower, May 15, 1976, p. 297, "Jehovah's Witnesses as modern-day Christians are working hard to get this good news preached to every individual. They do not claim infallibility or perfection. Neither are they inspired prophets."
  198. ^ "Allow No Place for the Devil!", The Watchtower, March 15, 1986, page 19, "Some opposers claim that Jehovah's Witnesses are false prophets. These opponents say that dates have been set, but nothing has happened.... Yes, Jehovah's people have had to revise expectations from time to time. Because of our eagerness, we have hoped for the new system earlier than Jehovah's timetable has called for it. But we display our faith in God's Word and its sure promises by declaring its message to others. Moreover, the need to revise our understanding somewhat does not make us false prophets or change the fact that we are living in 'the last days'.... How foolish to take the view that expectations needing some adjustment should call into question the whole body of truth! The evidence is clear that Jehovah has used and is continuing to use his one organization."
  199. ^ How Prophecy Succeeds: The Jehovah's Witnesses and Prophetic Expectations Archived 2010-12-10 at the Wayback Machine
  200. ^ Charles Taze Russell and Nelson H. Barbour, The Three Worlds (1907) as cited by James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, pages 21–22.
  201. ^ Charles Taze Russell, The Time Is At Hand (1891) as cited by James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, page 44.
  202. ^ Melvin D. Curry, Jehovah's Witnesses: The Millenarian World of the Watch Tower, Garland, 1992, as cited by James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, page 45.
  203. ^ Penton, James (1997). Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses. University of Toronto Press. p. 46. ISBN 978-0802079732.
  204. ^ The Finished Mystery, 1917, p. 485, 258, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 206–211.
  205. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1920). Millions Now Living Will Never Die (PDF). p. 97. Based upon the argument heretofore set forth, then, that the old order of things, the old world, is ending and is therefore passing away, and that the new order is coming in, and that 1925 shall mark the resurrection of the faithful worthies of old and the beginning of reconstruction, it is reasonable to conclude that millions of people now on the earth will be still on the earth in 1925.
  206. ^ Watch Tower, May 15, 1922, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 224.
  207. ^ W. E. Van Amburgh (1924). The Way to Paradise (PDF) (1925 ed.). pp. 215–236.
  208. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1938). Face the Facts and learn the only one way of escape (PDF). pp. 46–50.
  209. ^ The Watchtower, September 15, 1941, p. 288
  210. ^ The Watchtower, May 1, 1942, p. 139
  211. ^ Watchtower, November 15, 1957, p. 701
  212. ^ Awake!, February 22, 1961, p. 8
  213. ^ Life Everlasting in Freedom of the Sons of God (PDF). Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of New York and International Bible Students Association. 1966. pp. 29–35. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 20, 2012. Retrieved April 4, 2009., as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 238–239.
  214. ^ Talk by F. W. Franz, Baltimore, Maryland 1966, cited by Jehovah's Witnesses – Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, and by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 238–239.
  215. ^ Did Man Get Here By Evolution Or By Creation?, Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, 1967, p. 161; a near-identical statement also occurs in The Watchtower, April 1, 1967, p. 197.
  216. ^ The Watchtower, May 1, 1968, page 273
  217. ^ Kingdom Ministry, Watch Tower Society, March 1968, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 246.
  218. ^ Awake!, May 22, 1969, p. 15
  219. ^ Ingersoll-Wood, Carrie S. (2022). "The Educational Identity Formation of Jehovah's Witnesses, Religion & Education". Religion & Education. 49 (3): 310–338. doi:10.1080/15507394.2022.2102875. S2CID 251542550.
  220. ^ The Nations Shall Know That I Am Jehovah – How?, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1971, p. 216.
  221. ^ Kingdom Ministry, Watch Tower Society, May 1974, page 3.
  222. ^ The Watchtower, March 1, 1984, pp. 18–19
  223. ^ The Watchtower, January 1, 1989, p. 12.
  224. ^ "Flashes of Light - Great and Small", The Watchtower, May 15, 1995, page 17.
  225. ^ Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 184.
  226. ^ "unknown". The Watchtower. July 15, 1894. p. 1677. We see no reason for changing the figures—nor could we change them if we would. They are, we believe, God's dates, not ours. But bear in mind that the end of 1914 is not the date for the beginning, but for the end of the time of trouble. {{cite magazine}}: Cite uses generic title (help)
  227. ^ Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence. September 15, 1901. p. 292. The culmination of the trouble in October, 1914, is clearly marked in the Scriptures.
  228. ^ The Time Is at Hand. 1907. p. 101. The 'battle of the great day of God Almighty' (Rev. 16:14), which will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already commenced.
  229. ^ "unknown". The Watch Tower. November 1, 1922. p. 346. We understand that the jubilee type began to count in 1575 B.C.; and the 3,500 year period embracing the type must end in 1925. It follows, then, that the year 1925 will mark the beginning of the restoration of all things lost by Adam's disobedience. {{cite magazine}}: Cite uses generic title (help)
  230. ^ a b The Watch Tower. November 1, 1922. p. 333. Bible prophecy shows that the Lord was due to appear for the second time in 1874. Fulfilled prophecy shows beyond a doubt that he did appear in 1874 ... these facts are indisputable.
  231. ^ The Watch Tower, June 15, 1922, page 187.
  232. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses - Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, 1993, page 708.
  233. ^ "Impart God's Progressive Revelation to Mankind", The Watchtower, March 1, 1965, p. 158–159
  234. ^ Studies in the Scriptures Vol. II 1889 p. 239, Studies in the Scriptures Volume III 1891 p. 234, Studies in Scriptures Vol. IV 1897 p. 621.
  235. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses - Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, 1993, page 632.
  236. ^ "Gospel of the Kingdom". The Watch Tower. July 1, 1920. "It is well known that at this time the first universal Gentile empire was established, with Nebuchadnezzar as the ruler; and the Gentile times beginning there covered a period of seven symbolic times, or 2,520 years. The date of the beginning being 606 B.C., it would follow that the Gentile times would end in 1914; i. e., the legal lease of power would at that time expire and then the time would be due for him 'whose right it is' to receive and exercise kingly authority."
  237. ^ M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, University of Toronto Press, pages 20, 23.
  238. ^ M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, University of Toronto Press, page 23.
  239. ^ Watchtower, February 1, 1925, page 371.
  240. ^ Watchtower, May 15, 1927, page 151.
  241. ^ Watchtower, June 1, 1927.
  242. ^ Watch Tower, October–November 1881, as cited by Jehovah's Witnesses - Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, 1993, page 142.
  243. ^ The Battle of Armageddon by C. T. Russell, 1886, page 613, as cited by M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, footnote, page 345.
  244. ^ Watch Tower, December 1, 1916, as cited by M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, page 34.
  245. ^ Watch Tower, March 1, 1923, pages 68 and 71, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 63.
  246. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses - Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, 1993, page 626, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 67.
  247. ^ Watch Tower, October 1, 1909, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 67.
  248. ^ Jehovah's Witnesses - Proclaimers of God's Kingdom, Watch Tower Society, 1993, page 626.
  249. ^ "The Corroborative Testimony of God's Stone Witness and Prophet, The Great Pyramid in Egypt", Chapter 10, Thy Kingdom Come, third volume of Studies in the Scriptures, 1910 Archived January 15, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  250. ^ Watchtower, June 15, 1922, page 187, as reproduced by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 225, 226.
  251. ^ The Watch Tower. November 15, 1928 - December 1, 1928, pp. 339–45, 355–62, as cited by M. James Penton. Apocalypse Delayed. University of Toronto Press. p. 170.
  252. ^ Thy Kingdom Come, 1891, page 23.
  253. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1927). Creation (PDF). pp. 294–298. Twelve hundred sixty years from 539 A.D. brings us to 1799, another proof that 1799 definitely marks the beginning of "the time of the end".... "The time of the end" embraces a period from 1799 A.D., as above indicated, to the time of the complete overthrow of Satan's empire and the establishment of the kingdom of the Messiah. The time of the Lord's second presence dates from 1874.
  254. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1921). The Harp of God (PDF) (1928 ed.). p. 235. Twelve hundred sixty years from 539 A. D. brings us to 1799, another proof that 1799 definitely marks the beginning of 'the time of the end'.
  255. ^ "Locating the Time". The Watch Tower. December 1, 1929. pp. 355–361.
  256. ^ "The Ten Virgins". Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence. October 1879. p. 38–41
  257. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1929). Prophecy (PDF). pp. 65–66.
  258. ^ The Watch Tower, March 1, 1922, "The indisputable facts, therefore, show that the time of the end began in 1799; that the Lord's second presence began in 1874".
  259. ^ "Question and Answer". The Golden Age. April 30, 1930. pp. 503–504, "If it is true that Jesus has been present since the year 1914, then it must be admitted that nobody has seen Him with his natural eyes ... thus, for over sixteen years, Christ has been present, unseen by men, but plainly revealed to those who are students of the Bible and looking for the evidences which Jesus said would be a proof of His presence."
  260. ^ J. F. Rutherford (1930). Light, Book One (PDF). p. 70. Prior thereto the church had been applying the prophecy of Matthew twenty-four to the events that came to pass from 1874 to 1914. Not until after 1918 was it understood by the church that these events apply after 1914.
  261. ^ M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, pages 21, 46.
  262. ^ C.T. Russell, The Time Is At Hand, Watch Tower Society, 1889, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 190, 204.
  263. ^ Life, Watch Tower Society, 1929, page 170, as cited by Edmond C. Gruss, The Jehovah's Witnesses and Prophetic Speculation, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co, 1972, page 87.
  264. ^ J. F. Rutherford. Vindication, Book Two (1932). pp. 257–258, as cited by M. James Penton. Apocalypse Delayed. p. 65.
  265. ^ a b Raymond Franz, In Search of Christian Freedom, 2007, page 484.
  266. ^ The Watchtower, June 15, 1952, page 376.
  267. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom. Commentary Press. p. 107. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  268. ^ Qualified To Be Ministers, Watch Tower Society, 1955, page 381, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 74.
  269. ^ Marley Cole, Jehovah's Witnesses - The New World Society, Vantage Press, New York, 1955, pages 86–89, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 74.
  270. ^ Testimony by Fred Franz, Lord Strachan vs. Douglas Walsh Transcript, Lord Strachan vs. Douglas Walsh, 1954, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 75–76.
  271. ^ Watch Tower, March 1, 1923, page 68, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 59.
  272. ^ Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, pages 58–79.
  273. ^ M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, 1997, page 216.
  274. ^ The Watchtower, December 15, 1971, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, 2007, page 78.
  275. ^ The Watchtower, July 1, 1963, page 412.
  276. ^ The Watchtower, July 15, 1963, page 443.
  277. ^ "Maintaining a Balanced Viewpoint Toward Disfellowshiped Ones", The Watchtower, August 1, 1974, pages 467, "It is right to hate the wrong committed by the disfellowshiped one, but it is not right to hate the person nor is it right to treat such ones in an inhumane way."
  278. ^ "Maintaining a Balanced Viewpoint Toward Disfellowshiped Ones", The Watchtower, August 1, 1974, pages 471–472.
  279. ^ "Maintaining a Balanced Viewpoint Toward Disfellowshiped Ones", The Watchtower, August 1, 1974, page 471, par 19.
  280. ^ a b "If a Relative Is Disfellowshiped", The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, page 28.
  281. ^ "Disfellowshiping—How to View It", The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, pages 24–25.
  282. ^ "If a Relative Is Disfellowshiped", The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, page 30.
  283. ^ The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, pages 20–31, as cited by M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, University of Toronto Press, page 299–300.
  284. ^ Letter to all circuit and district overseers from Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of New York, September 1, 1980, as reproduced by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 341.
  285. ^ "Disfellowshiping—How to View It", The Watchtower, September 15, 1981, pages 23, as cited by M. James Penton, Apocalypse Delayed, University of Toronto Press, page 299–300.
  286. ^ Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 357–359.
  287. ^ "Help for Those Who Are Removed From the Congregation". The Watchtower. Watch Tower Society. August 2024. p. 27. We will no longer refer to such ones as being disfellowshipped. In harmony with Paul's words recorded at 1 Corinthians 5:13, we will now refer to them as being removed from the congregation.
  288. ^ 2024 Governing Body update #2. WatchTower Bible and Tract Society. Event occurs at 13:12. Retrieved April 11, 2024.
  289. ^ Watch Tower, June 15, 1911, as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, page 188.
  290. ^ The Finished Mystery, 1917, p. 485, 258, 513 as cited by Raymond Franz, Crisis of Conscience, pages 206–211.
  291. ^ Revelation - It's Grand Climax at Hand!, Watch Tower Society, 1988, page 209.
  292. ^ Revelation - It's Grand Climax at Hand!, Watch Tower Society, 1988, pages 266, 269.
  293. ^ "No Calamity Will Befall Us" (Subheading). The Watchtower. november 15, 2001. p. 19.
  294. ^ "Let the Reader Use Discernment", (Subheading "A Modern-Day 'Disgusting Thing'"). The Watchtower. May 1, 1999. p. 14.
  295. ^ "A World Without War-When?" Oct.1, 1991, pp.5 The Watchtower
  296. ^ The Watchtower, 1 June 1997, p. 17 par. 15: "In the first place, what lies ahead for the world's false religions that have so often been extremely friendly with the UN? They are the offspring of one idolatrous fountainhead, ancient Babylon. Appropriately, they are described at Revelation 17:5 as "Babylon the Great, the mother of the harlots and of the disgusting things of the earth". Jeremiah described the doom of this hypocritical conglomerate. Harlotlike, they have seduced earth's politicians, flattering the UN and forming illicit relations with its member political powers."
  297. ^ Bates, Stephen (Oct. 8, 2001) "Jehovah's Witnesses link to UN queried", The Guardian
  298. ^ Bates, Stephen (Oct. 15, 2001) "'Hypocrite' Jehovah's Witnesses abandon secret link with UN", The Guardian
  299. ^ Letter to Editor - The Guardian" Archived 2007-03-03 at the Wayback Machine (Oct. 22, 2001) Office of Public Information
  300. ^ Letter from United Nations DPI/NGO Resource Centre
  301. ^ Pay Attention to Daniel's Prophecy! chap. 6 par. 25–29
  302. ^ a b Edmond C. Gruss, Jehovah's Witnesses and Prophetic Speculation, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co, 1972, ISBN 0-87552-306-4 Page 42.
  303. ^ Alan Rogerson, Millions Now Living Will Never Die, Constable, 1969, page 105, "Secular historians put this date as 586 or 587 BC but the Witnesses, following Russell, place it at 607 BC."
  304. ^ a b "When Was Ancient Jerusalem Destroyed?—Part One" The Watchtower, October 1, 2011, page 26
  305. ^ "Evidences of the Year's Correctness". The Watchtower. May 1, 1952. pp. 271–2. It was in this first regnal year of Cyrus that he issued his decree to permit the Jews to return to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple. (Ezra 1:1) The decree may have been made in late 538 B.C. or before March 4–5, 537 B.C. In either case this would have given sufficient time for the large party of 49,897 Jews to organize their expedition and to make their long four-month journey from Babylon to Jerusalem to get there by September 29–30, 537 B.C., the first of the seventh Jewish month, to build their altar to Jehovah as recorded at Ezra 3:1–3. Inasmuch as September 29–30, 537 B.C., officially ends the seventy years of desolation as recorded at 2 Chronicles 36:20, 21, so the beginning of the desolation of the land must have officially begun to be counted after September 21–22, 607 B.C., the first of the seventh Jewish month in 607 B.C., which is the beginning point for the counting of the 2,520 years.
  306. ^ "Babylonian Exile". Encyclopædia Britannica. February 26, 2016.
  307. ^ "Timeline of Judaism after the Babylonian Exile (538 BCE – 70 CE)". Jewishvirtuallibrary.org. Retrieved October 27, 2012.
  308. ^ Keller, Werner (1983). The Bible As History. Bantam; 2 Revised edition. p. 352. ISBN 0-553-27943-2.
  309. ^ Dictionary of the Bible: Biographical, Geographical, Historical and Doctrinal by Charles Randall Barnes, Page 247.
  310. ^ Dyer, Charles (2003). Nelson's Old Testament survey: Discovering essence, Background & Meaning about Every Old Testament book.
  311. ^ The Gentile Times Reconsidered: Chronology & Christ's Return by Carl O. Jonsson. ISBN 0-914675-06-0 Publisher: Commentary Press (July, 1998, Fourth edition 2004)
  312. ^ "When Was Ancient Jerusalem Destroyed?—Part Two" The Watchtower, November 1, 2011, page 22
  313. ^ Insight on the Scriptures. Vol.2 page 459, "secular chronologers calculate the 16th day of Tashritu (Tishri) as falling on October 11, Julian calendar, and October 5, Gregorian calendar, in the year 539 B.C.E. Since this date is an accepted one, there being no evidence to the contrary, it is usable as a pivotal date in coordinating secular history with Bible history."
  314. ^ Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, and Persian Chronology Compared with the Chronology of the Bible, Volume 1: Persian Chronology and the Length of the Babylonian Exile of the Jews (2003) ISBN 82-994633-3-5
  315. ^ Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 28:5 [2004], p. 42–43
  316. ^ "My Beloved Religion—and the Governing Body". goodreads.
  317. ^ "My only option was to publish the book". Vårt Land. June 25, 2020. Archived from the original on June 29, 2020. Retrieved October 24, 2022.
  318. ^ Stephenson, F. R.; Willis, D. M. (2002). "The Earliest Datable Observation of the Aurora Borealis". In Steele, John M.; Imhausen, Annette (eds.). Under One Sky: Astronomy and Mathematics in the Ancient Near East. Münster: Ugarit-Verlag. pp. 423–428. ISBN 978-3-934628-26-7.
  319. ^ a b "When Was Ancient Jerusalem Destroyed?—Part Two" The Watchtower, November 1, 2011, page 25, 28, endnote 18
  320. ^ Mesopotamian Planetary Astronomy–Astrology, David Brown, pages 53–56; 2000
  321. ^ When Was Ancient Jerusalem Destroyed, page 21, Carl O. Jonsson.
  322. ^ Is There a Creator Who Cares About You?. Watch Tower Society. pp. 93–94.
  323. ^ The Watchtower, April 1, 1986, pp. 12-13
  324. ^ Awake!, May 8, 1997, p. 12
  325. ^ The Watchtower, September 1, 1986, p. 30
  326. ^ Life—How Did It Get Here? By Evolution Or By Creation?, Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, 1985
  327. ^ Was Life Created?, Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, 2010
  328. ^ Gary Botting, "Preface" to The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses, pp. xiv–xvi
  329. ^ Hitching is first introduced as an "evolutionist" (p. 15). A Hitching quote on page 71 is repeated on page 73, in the latter case presented as the statement of "a scientist". The 1986 Watchtower book The Bible—God's Word or Man's? likewise refers to Hitching as a scientist (p. 106).
  330. ^ Richard Dawkins: The God Delusion, p. 145. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. 2006. ISBN 0-618-68000-4.
  331. ^ a b c d e f Penton, M. J. (1997). Apocalypse Delayed (2nd ed.). University of Toronto Press. pp. 174–176.
  332. ^ "New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures", The Watchtower, September 15, 1950, page 320.
  333. ^ Questions from readers, The Watchtower, December 15, 1974, page 767.
  334. ^ In a 1954 court case, Franz was invited to translate a passage of Genesis from English to Hebrew. (Translator's proof, page 102-103). He declined, saying he would not attempt it. Heather and Gary Botting wrongly claim (page 98) he could make no sense of "an elementary passage of Hebrew from Genesis".
  335. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). Crisis of Conscience. Commentary Press. p. 56. ISBN 978-0-914675-23-5.
  336. ^ Robert M. Bowman Jr, Understanding Jehovah's Witnesses, (Grand Rapids MI: Baker Book House, 1992)
  337. ^ Samuel Haas, Journal of Biblical Literature, Vol. 74, No. 4, (Dec. 1955), p. 283, "This work indicates a great deal of effort and thought as well as considerable scholarship, it is to be regretted that religious bias was allowed to colour many passages."
  338. ^ Ankerberg, John and John Weldon, 2003, The New World Translation of the Jehovah's Witnesses, accessible online Archived October 29, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  339. ^ Rhodes R, The Challenge of the Cults and New Religions, The Essential Guide to Their History, Their Doctrine, and Our Response, Zondervan, 2001, p. 94
  340. ^ Bruce M Metzger, "Jehovah's Witnesses and Jesus Christ", Theology Today, (April 1953 p. 74); see also Metzger, "The New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures", The Bible Translator (July 1964)
  341. ^ C.H. Dodd: "The reason why [the Word was a god] is unacceptable is that it runs counter to the current of Johannine thought, and indeed of Christian thought as a whole." Technical Papers for The Bible Translator, Vol 28, No. 1, January 1977
  342. ^ Botting, Heather; Gary Botting (1984). The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses. University of Toronto Press. pp. 98–101. ISBN 0-8020-6545-7.
  343. ^ Franz, Raymond (2007). In Search of Christian Freedom. Commentary Press. pp. 494–505. ISBN 978-0-914675-17-4.
  344. ^ G. HÉBERT/EDS, "Jehovah's Witnesses", The New Catholic Encyclopedia, Gale, 20052, Vol. 7, p. 751.
  345. ^ Metzger, Bruce M., The New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures, The Bible Translator 15/3 (July 1964), pp. 150-153.
  346. ^ "God's Name and the New Testament", The Divine Name That Will Endure Forever, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1984, pages 23-27
  347. ^ "Appendix 1D The Divine Name in the Christian Greek Scriptures", New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures - With References, page 1565
  348. ^ "Your Bible—How It Was Produced", The Watchtower, December 15, 1981, page 15
  349. ^ Jason D. BeDuhn, Truth in Translation: Accuracy and Bias in English Translations of the New Testament, 2004, pages 165, 169, 175, 176. BeDuhn compared the King James, the (New) Revised Standard, the New International, the New American Bible, the New American Standard Bible, the Amplified Bible, the Living Bible, Today's English and the NWT versions in Matthew 28:9, Philippians 2:6, Colossians 1:15-20, Titus 2:13, Hebrews 1:8, John 8:58, John 1:1.
  350. ^ Truth in Translation: Accuracy and Bias in English Translations of the New Testament by Jason BeDuhn, 2004, pages 165, University Press of America, ISBN 0-7618-2556-8, ISBN 978-0-7618-2556-2
  351. ^ Thomas A Howe, Bias in New Testament Translations?, 2010, p. 326 (back cover), "In this critical evaluation, BeDuhn's arguments are challenged and his conclusions called into question." - See also Thomas A. Howe, The Deity of Christ in Modern Translations, 2015



Further reading

  • Botting, Gary and Heather. The Orwellian World of Jehovah`s Witnesses (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984). ISBN 0-8020-6545-7. The Bottings compare the social, cultural and political paradigms of Jehovah's Witnesses to those set out in George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. Both authors were raised Jehovah's Witnesses and are trained scholars (Heather Botting is a professor of anthropology and Gary Botting is a lawyer and legal scholar). The book is based in part on a doctoral dissertation by Heather Botting. Read selections from: The Orwellian World of Jehovah's Witnesses (Google book search) University of Toronto Press, ISBN 978-0-8020-6545-2
  • Botting, Gary. Fundamental Freedoms and Jehovah's Witnesses (Calgary: University of Calgary Press, 1993). ISBN 1-895176-06-9. Botting considers the irony of Jehovah's Witness insisting on a closely regulated society while at the same time fighting for freedom of association, freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom of the press.
  • Castro, Joy. The Truth Book: Escaping a Childhood of Abuse Among Jehovah's Witnesses, adopted as a baby and raised by a devout Jehovah's Witness family. Published 2005 Arcade Publishing, ISBN 1-55970-787-9. Read selections on Google Books.
  • Franz, Raymond. Crisis of Conscience Franz, a former Jehovah's Witness and Governing Body member, and nephew of the fourth president of the Watch Tower Society. This book gives a detailed account of the authority structure, practices, doctrines and decision-making practices Franz experienced while serving on the Governing Body. Sample chapters online: 9, 10, 11, 12. Publisher: Commentary Press. 420 pages. Hardback ISBN 0-914675-24-9. Paperback ISBN 0-914675-23-0. 4th edition (June 2002)
  • Franz, Raymond. In Search of Christian Freedom. 2nd ed., 2007. ISBN 0-914675-17-6 (Further critique and analysis by this author)
  • Gruss, Edmond C. Apostles of Denial, Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co, 1970, ISBN 0-87552-305-6 / ISBN 978-0-87552-305-7.
  • Harrison, Barbara Grizzuti. Visions of Glory: A History and a Memory of Jehovah's Witnesses. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1978. ISBN 0-7091-8013-6 (An account by an American journalist and essayist of life as a Jehovah's Witness, until she left at age 22)
  • Hewitt, Joe. I Was Raised a Jehovah's Witness. Hewitt gives a frank and compelling account of his life as a Jehovah's Witness and his subsequent persecution and excommunication after he decided to leave the Jehovah's Witness movement. Published 1997, Kregel Publications, ISBN 0-8254-2876-9. Read selections on Archive.org.
  • Jonsson, Carl O. The Gentile Times Reconsidered: Chronology & Christ's Return Jonsson considers the origin of the belief that the Gentile Times began in 607 B.C. and examines several lines of evidence and the methodology for deriving it. ISBN 0-914675-06-0 Publisher: Commentary Press (July, 1998, Fourth edition 2004)
  • Kostelniuk, James. Wolves Among Sheep. Harpercollins Trade Sales Dept, ISBN 978-0-00-639107-4
  • Penton, M. James. Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2nd ed., 1997. ISBN 0-8020-7973-3 (Scholarly examination of JW history and doctrines. Penton, who is a former Jehovah's Witness and a professor emeritus of history at University of Lethbridge.)
  • Schnell, William J. 30 Years a Watchtower Slave Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 1956, 1971, reprinted 2001. ISBN 0-8010-6384-1 (One of the first book-length critiques of the organization to be written by a disaffected former Witness)
  • Stafford, Greg. Jehovah's Witnesses Defended and Three Dissertations. The author has renounced affiliation with the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society and considers himself a Christian Witness of Jah.[citation needed] These books consider some of the most common criticisms made about Jehovah's Witnesses and the Watch Tower Society.
  • JW Files--Research on Jehovah's Witnesses - A site "dedicated to research on Jehovah Witnesses".
  • jwfacts.com - Information about Jehovah's Witnesses
  • JWRecovery Magazine - An ex-JW community contributed magazine / journal that provides information and support assistance to former Jehovah's Witnesses.
  • Religious Tolerance.org Archived March 12, 2021, at the Wayback Machine Jehovah's Witnesses Policies & examples of child sexual abuse.
  • Silentlambs.org Silentlambs' official website.