In their sixth and final point, the writers of the Awake! article tell us:
6. When the laity are Biblically uniformed, they can be easily be misled by clerics. Indeed, history contains may examples of such abuses.
I have to agree with this point. I agree that Biblically uninformed and misinformed Jehovah’s Witness laity have been mislead by their clergy – both paid and unpaid. Now, having said that, I will say that this point is really moot. Whether we are Jehovah’s Witnesses or Congregationalists or Baptists or Methodist or are non-denominational, we need to take responsibility for our own Biblical literacy. If we abdicate that responsibility and leave it to others whether it be an organization or elders or pastors, we are just setting ourselves up for failure and disappointment.
The problem with the Jehovah’s Witnesses is that they are taught that the way to be Biblically informed is to stick with the organization’s program of “Bible” study. The organization does not really foster spiritual growth, but keeps its adherents in a perpetual state of spiritual immaturity and spiritual dependence on the organization for their spiritual food. The same does happen within Christendom, but only within very unhealthy churches. There are a lot of very healthy churches out there and I have been blessed to have been able to fellowship with many of them. Those healthy churches foster spiritual growth in the individual Christian and within the church as a whole. While the scene in Christendom is not perfect, it is not nearly as bad as the writers of the Watchtower and Awake would like to paint it.