“Inspector Berean and the Case of the Murdered Archangel” by William Bacon

Inspector Berean strolled from the Victoria and Albert Museum into Exhibition Road, northwards in the direction of Hyde Park. His ears detected the distinctive sound of a London Cab . Quickly turning, he was fortunate to observe the cab was fore hire, raising his hand the driver quickly pulled up and the inspector boarded.

“Good day sir” said the driver, “Where would you like?”

“Thank you cabbie, would you take me to 144,000 Russell Square”.

Within seconds Inspector Berean was moving swiftly to his destination.The Inspector had an important appointment to keep and had arranged to meet his two visitors at his office. Twenty minutes later the Inspector was passing the British Museum as the cabbie made his final approach to Russell Square.

Inspector Berean had been a Christian for many years and had acquired a tremendous knowledge of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. Today he was to meet his dear brother in Christ, Tom and a young woman named Sue. His guest soon arrived. Entering the study, the Inspector warmly shook the hand of his old friend and was introduced to Sue.

For a number of weeks Sue had been studying with the Jehovah’s Witnesses and had Met Tom who suggested that before making a commitment to the Organisation she should meet with Inspector Berean. The conversation was soon under way, with the Inspector explaining to Sue how the Watchtower had made many false prophecies in its history.
Sue was taken aback at this claim.

“What right have you to condemn the society like that ?”, she retorted. Berean’s reply was not one she expected. He told her that he actually had permission from the society. Explaining to her, he said “In the Watchtower of the 15th of November 1963 page 688 the Society says that to expose publicly a certain religion as being false is a public service instead of a religious persecution. So therefore looking into these matters I must conclude that the teachings of the Society are not in harmony with the Bible.”

“Let me give you some examples of my investigations . If I were to take the watchtower’s teachings as being truth, I would have to come to the conclusion that God is a murderer”, Berean went on, “ The Watchtower Society has said many times, that the Lord Jesus is in fact an angel called Michael “. In their book “ Aid to Bible Understanding” 1971 page 920 we are told that Jehovah God transferred the life force of his first-born son from the spirit realm to earth. We are told in the Watchtower of 15th January 1913 page 23 that a human being has a body and a life force. The union of these makes the soul. We are also told in the Watchtower of April 1881 that angels are composed of a spiritual body and a life force.

They describe death as the dissolution or separation of the things which combine, constitute being, life and body. “So very simply they are saying take away the life force from the body and you have death” “We are further told in Aid to Bible Understanding” 1971 page 1061 that all things having life, either spiritual or fleshly, have an organism or body. Life itself is impersonal, incorporeal, being merely the life principle. Berean went on to explain to Sue, Further to this in the book “Is This Life All There Is” 1974 page 51 it says the spirit is much like electricity which activates many things but does not take on their qualities. They further explain that this life force ,this spirit , like electricity has no conscience existence apart from the body.

In the Awake of 8th August 1972 page 27, it states that on leaving man’s body at death, the spirit does not retain any of the characteristics of the cells. For example in the case of brain cells , the spirit does not retain the information stored there and, continue thought processes. “A very important discovery is made concerning this impersonal life force in the Awake of 8th July 1949. We are told that this life force when separated from its body had no thought , no feeling, it cannot die. We must now remember Jehovah God transferred the life force of Michael to Mary on the earth. Since Michael’s life force was separated from his spirit body, this surely must leave us with a dead angel in heaven.

We must also remember that this life force is impersonal with no thought, no feeling and no intelligent existence. This seems to be a very strange teaching. We are told Jesus was just a man, It is difficult to see how we can connect the two, one is an angel and the other is just a man. It would appear the Lord Jesus Christ, suffered and died went out of existence and now we have an angel called Michael in heaven who is Lord of Lords and King of Kings.

In this amazing story that the Watchtower has spun over the years, exclusively for their deceived people, they have forgotten one thing. Michael the Archangel would need to be omnipresent, a thing that angels are not.

“Explain yourself Inspector” said Sue “ We read in the book of Daniel that an angel was delayed in coming to Daniel’s help, thereby proving that angels are not omnipresent” the Inspector went on “ We are told in the scriptures that a Christian has Christ in him, although the Watchtower deliberately alter these verses and use the term “In Union” the Greek says “In you”. We are told by the Watchtower Society that only the 144,000 are born again, and have Christ in them i.e. Michael. We are told Michael is an Archangel we know angels are not omnipresent, so therefore we would need 144,000 Archangel Michael’s for him to be in the Watchtower’s anointed group.

So Sue was the Archangel Michael murdered? The answer is no. He was is and always will be an angel, and Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.

copyright 1992 William Bacon

Our Adoption

Here is a quote from the February, 2017 Study Edition of the Watchtower, page 12, paragraph 15 that I found very disturbing. I’ve quoted the whole paragraph.

The door to complete forgiveness opens to us when we exercise faith in the ransom. God’s Word assures us that our sins can be “blotted out.” (Read Acts 3:19-21.) As we considered earlier, on the basis of the ransom, Jehovah adopts his spirit-anointed servants as his children. (Rom. 8:15-17) As to those of us who are of the “other sheep,” it is as though Jehovah has drawn up an adoption certificate with our name on it. After we have reached perfection and have passed the final test, Jehovah will be delighted to sign the certificate, as it were, and adopt us as his beloved earthly children. (Rom. 8:20, 21; Rev. 20:7-9) Jehovah’s love for his precious children is everlasting. The benefits of the ransom last forever. (Heb. 9:12) This gift will never lose its value. No person or power can take it away from us.

Imagine being a child, a broken, desperate, orphaned child, a child in dire need of a Father. In your brokenness, you’ve acted out, in fact badly enough that you are now in detention.

Now imagine you are introduced to someone who, despite your behavior and incarceration is interested in adopting you into his family. In fact, interested enough that he has sent his son to bail you out of detention and he has drawn up the adoption paperwork that has your name on it. Your heart is stirred with hope. Hope of being released from “the system,” hope of being adopted into a family that will love you, a family that you can love, hope of a real life.

But then, imagine that he now reminds you that your behavioral issues still need to be dealt with. He says he will help you, but that he will only finally adopt you once you have not only behaved yourself for an extended amount of time, but also have become perfect and then passed a final test.

Then he tells you that he has already adopted some other children that had the same behavioral issues as you, but because they were his ‘chosen ones’ he adopted them right away, before they exhibited good behavior for many years, had attained perfection and had passed the same test that you must undergo. What kind of a father is this?

This is the kind of father portrayed in this quote from the Watchtower.

But it is not the kind of Father we read about in the Bible. The Father we read about in the Bible not only sent his Son to pay for our bad behavior, but when we receive that Son, He give us the right to become children of the Father. John 1:12,13 tells us:

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God

Not only that, but the Father gives us “the spirit of adoption”, the assurance that we are His children, and not just his children, but His heirs. At Romans 8:15-17 we read:

15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.

And again, at Galatians 4:4,5:

4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

The Bible does not teach us that God adopts some of his children now, but waits until others have behaved themselves for a thousand years, attained perfection and then successfully passed a test before He adopts them.

The Watchtower has hurled the accusation against “Christendom” that they have dishonored God by the teaching of the Trinity. My response to that has been – What discredits God more? Teaching that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all diety, co-equal, co-eternal, omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent OR teaching that the Father is only conditionally omniscient and not omnipresent, the Son who is none of the above and the holy spirit that is not even a person, but an impersonal force?

And to this I would add – or teaching that the Father only adopts some of His children until have they have behaved for a thousand years, become perfect and passed a final test.

The Watchtower and Johannes Greber

Much has been said and written in recent years regarding Jehovah’s Witnesses reliance on Johannes Greber’s “The New Testament—A New Translation and Explanation Based on the Oldest Manuscripts” to support their rendering of John 1:1 and Matthew 27:52,53 in their “New World Translation.” In reality, the writers of The Watchtower have only referred to Greber a handful of times over the years. But, I think the timing and context of those references is interesting. Let’s start with the most recent reference to Greber and his translation that I could find.
From the 4/1/1983 issue of “The Watchtower”, page 31, “Questions from Readers”
■ Why, in recent years, has The Watchtower not made use of the translation by the former Catholic priest, Johannes Greber?
This translation was used occasionally in support of renderings of Matthew 27:52, 53 and John 1:1, as given in the New World Translation and other authoritative Bible versions. But as indicated in a foreword to the 1980 edition of The New Testament by Johannes Greber, this translator relied on “God’s Spirit World” to clarify for him how he should translate difficult passages. It is stated: “His wife, a medium of God’s Spiritworld was often instrumental in conveying the correct answers from God’s Messengers to Pastor Greber.” The Watchtower has deemed it improper to make use of a translation that has such a close rapport with spiritism. (Deuteronomy 18:10-12) The scholarship that forms the basis for the rendering of the above-cited texts in the New World Translation is sound and for this reason does not depend at all on Greber’s translation for authority. Nothing is lost, therefore, by ceasing to use his New Testament.
So here, The Watchtower tells us that they had ceased using Greber’s translation because they came to realize that it had come about, at least partially, as a result of spiritism. Interesting that The Watchtower quotes from the forward from the 1980 edition rather than earlier printings of Greber’s translation. A cursory reading of this might leave the reader with the impression that the writers of The Watchtower had only recently discovered Frau Greber’s relying on “God’s Spiritworld” to convey “the correct answers from God’s Messengers to Pastor Greber”, and having discovered it, immediately stopped making use of Greber’s translation. Their statement could hardly have been better worded to give that impression.
This is hardly the case however.  The writers of The Watchtower knew about Greber being a spiritualist as early as 1955. This is from the 10/1/1955 Watchtower, page 603, para. 33:
It comes as no surprise that one Johannes Greber, a former Catholic clergyman, has become a spiritualist and has published the book entitled “Communication with the Spirit World, Its laws and Its Purpose.” (1932, Macoy Publishing Company, New York)
Then in 1956, The Watchtower makes reference to Greber’s 1937 translation of the New Testament, again highlighting Greber’s spiritism. The following is from the 2/15/1956 Watchtower, pages 110-111, para 10, “Triumphing Over Wicked Spirit Forces”:

Says Johannes Greber in the introduction of his translation of The New Testament, copyrighted in 1937: “I myself was a Catholic priest, and until I was forty-eight years old had never as much as believed in the possibility of communicating with the world of God’s spirits. The day came, however, when I involuntarily took my first step toward such communication, and experienced things that shook me to the depths of my soul. . . . My experiences are related in a book that has appeared in both German and English and bears the title, Communication with the Spirit-World: Its Laws and Its Purpose.”(Page 15, ¶ 2, 3) In keeping with his Roman Catholic extraction Greber’s translation is bound with a gold-leaf cross on its stiff front cover. In the Foreword of his aforementioned book ex-priest Greber says: “The most significant spiritualistic book is the Bible.” Under this impression Greber endeavors to make his New Testament translation read very spiritualistic.

Despite having already acknowledged Greber’s being a spiritist, The Watchtower then turned around and used his rendition of Matthew 27:52, 53 to support their own translation of it. In the 1/1/1961 issue of The Watchtower, page 30 they quote Greber’s translation without attribution as follows:
Nor is the New World Translation alone in rendering these verses thus. A modern German translation reads quite similarly: “Tombs were laid open, and many bodies of those buried were tossed upright. In this posture they projected from the graves and were seen by many who passed by the place on their way back to the city.”—Matt. 27:52, 53.
Next, in their issue of 9/15/1962, page 554 in the article “The Word” – Who is He? According to John, they quote Greber with attribution in a footnote to support their translation of John 1:1:
Similar is the reading by a former Roman Catholic priest: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god. This was with God in the beginning. Everything came into being through the Word, and without it nothing created sprang into existence.” (John 1:1-3)
And the footnote to the previous quote reads:
The New Testament—A New Translation and Explanation Based on the Oldest Manuscripts, by Johannes Greber (a translation from German into English), edition of 1937, the front cover of this bound translation being stamped with a golden cross.
The 1965 edition of The Watchtower’s book Make Sure of All Things, Hold Fast to What is Fine quotes Greber’s translation of John 1:1; the 1953 and 1957 editions of the same book, do not.
In their encyclopedic Aid to Bible Understanding (1971), page 1134, after mentioning earthquakes in Ecuador and Columbia where corpses were heaved out of tombs by earthquakes, they quote Greber, again with respect to Matthew 27:52,53, writing:
The translation by Johannes Greber (1937) of these verses reads as follows: “Tombs were laid open, and many bodies of those buried were tossed upright. In this posture they projected from the graves and were seen by many who passed by the place on their way back to the city.”
Later, in the same Aid book, on page 1669, they cite Greber in connection with John 1:1:
A translation by a former Roman Catholic priest, Johannes Greber (1937 ed.) renders the second appearance of the word “god” in the sentence as “a god.”
Then in The Watchtower of 10/15/1975, page 640, “Questions From Readers”, they again refer to Greber’s translation to lend support to their rendering of Matthew 27:52, 53:
“Without wresting the Greek grammar, a translator can render Matthew 27:52, 53 in a way that suggests that a similar exposing of corpses resulted from the earthquake occurring at Jesus’ death. Thus the translation by Johannes Greber (1937) renders these verses: ‘Tombs were laid open, and many bodies of those buried there were tossed upright. In this posture they projected from the graves and were seen by many who passed by the place on their way back to the city.’”—Compare the New World Translation.” 
And again in The Watchtower of 4/15/1976, page 231, “Insight on the News”, they again use Greber’s translation to support their own.
“The recent Guatemalan earthquake affected even some of those already dead. “Time” magazine reports that “several mourners who went to bury their dead in family plots found that the coffins of long-dead relatives had been uncovered by the quake.” Something similar occurred during an earthquake in the Jerusalem area at Jesus’ death. At that time, dead bodies were customarily placed in vaults or chambers cut from Palestine’s soft limestone rock, often in hillsides. A report in the Bible, as translated by Johannes Greber, says that when Jesus died, “the earth quaked, and the rocks were shattered. Tombs were laid open, and many bodies of those buried there were tossed upright. In this posture they projected from the graves and were seen by many who passed by the place on their way back to the city.” Hence, rather than a resurrection, as some Bible translations imply, there appears to have been merely an exposure of the dead to observers, as in Guatemala.
A search on JW.ORG for “Greber” returns no results, but in their note on Matthew 27:52 in their online version of The New World Translation (Study Edition) they state: “Evidently, the earthquake was so powerful that the tombs were broken open and corpses were thrown out of them.”
So, to summarize, after recognizing Greber as a spiritist in 1955 The Watchtower from 1961 to 1976, used Greber’s translation to support their New World Translation’s renderings of John 1:1 and Matthew 27:52,53. Then in 1983 they explained that they had stopped using Greber’s translation when they realized he was a spiritist, giving the impression that their realization was much more resent than it really was. While the writers of The Watchtower appeal to other translations to support their rendering of John 1:1, Greber’s is the only other translation that they use to support their rendering of Matthew 27:52, 53.
So, I think to say that The Watchtower got their rendering of John 1:1 from Greber may be a bit of a stretch. The same cannot be said for their dependence on Greber for support of their translation of Matthew 27:52,53.

Is Our Salvation Eternal?

The table below came from a handout from Dan Hall at the first Witnesses Now for Jesus conference that I attended back in 1998. I’ve used it here with his permission.

When we are saved,  we are: When we sin,  does God:
Reconciled to God
Romans 5:10 – ” For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more,  having been reconciled,  we shall be saved by His life”
Un-reconcile us?
Justified
Romans 3: 23, 24 – “for all has sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus.”
Un-justify us?
Totally forgiven
Colossians 2:13 – “When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.”
Un-forgive us?
Totally cleansed
1 Cor 6:11 – “Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”Titus 3:5 – “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit”
Un-cleanse us?
Made holy and blameless
Colossians 1:22 – “yet He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach”
Take back our holiness and blamelessness?
Clothed with Christ
Galatians 3:27 – “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ”
Rip off our “Christ clothes”?
Sealed in Christ
Eph 1:13, 14 – “In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation, having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory”
Break the seal of Christ?
Take back the pledge of our inheritance?
Given Christ’s righteousness
2 Cor 5:21 – “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him”
Take away Christ’s righteousness?
Reborn by the Spirit of God
1 Pet 1:3 – “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
Reverse our being reborn?
Indwelt by the Holy Spirit
Romans 8:9 – “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him”
Take back the Holy Spirit?
Indwelt, Made into a new creation
2 Cor 5:17 – “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come.”
Make us back into an old creation?
Made a child of God
John 1:12, 13 – “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become Children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
Deny that we are His children?
Adopted into God’s family
Romans 8:15 – “For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out ‘Abba! Father!'”
Un-adopt us?
Made heirs of God
Gal 4:7 – “Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son then an heir through God.”
Take back our inheritance?
In fellowship with God
1 Cor 1:9 – “God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord”
Disfellowship us?
Given every spiritual blessing
Eph 1:3 – “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.”
Take back every spiritual blessing?
Written down in the book of life
Phil 4:3 -” Indeed, true companion, I ask you also to help these women who have shared my struggle in the cause of the gospel, together with Clement also and the rest of my fellow workers, who names are in the book of life.”
Erase our name from the book of life?

 

“What Assurance of Salvation Does For Us”

“The Holy Spirit assures us that God is our Father and loves us. God has poured out his love into our hearts. (Rom. 5:5) Romans 8:15-16 says that when we cry “Abba, Father,” the Holy Spirit is witnessing to our spirit that we are God’s children. Few experiences can provide more power in our lives than to have the assurance of salvation. Think of what it could do for us:

  • We would be joyous in our service for God, but not driven in our works, or mistaken in the notion that our works would save us.
  • We would be delivered from frantic preoccupation with taking our spiritual temperature minute by minute.
  • We would be free and spontaneous in our witness, exercising patience, and understanding as well as speaking with conviction and challenge.
  • We would not get overwrought with our friends about future security, for we would be assured of our present relationship with Christ – who loves us with an immeasurable love.

“This We Believe” pp 201,202

Composite Christ

Those Jehovah’s Witnesses who claim to be of the 144,000 refer to themselves by many titles: the remnant, the faithful and discreet slave, and the anointed to name a few. I say that they refer to themselves by these titles because the governing body of Jehovah’s Witnesses who claim to be the spokesman for the 144,000 teaches that it is the remnant of the 144,000 in their role as the faithful and discreet slave who are responsible for the teachings put forth in the pages of The Watchtower and other publication of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. So when Watchtower publications speak of the faithful and discreet slave or the remnant or the anointed, the writers are referring to themselves.

Knowing that the words “Christ” and “Messiah” mean “anointed” and having taken this title on themselves certainly puts those self-proclaimed “anointed” Jehovah’s Witnesses in quite an elevated position. In fact they at one time, taught that they themselves plus Jesus Christ constituted a composite Christ:

“Messiah’s kingdom once established, Jesus and his glorified church constituting the great Messiah, shall minister the blessings to the people they have so long desired and hoped for and prayed might come.” – Millions Now Living Will Never Die, 1920, p 88

“The word Christ signifies anointed. Anointing means designation to official position in God’s arrangement. The Christ is the instrument or channel for the blessing of mankind. The Christ is composed of Jesus the great and mighty head, and 144,000 members.” – The Harp of God, 1921, p 187

“The new creation is The Christ. The Christ is a composite body made up of many members. The Head of The Christ is Jesus Christ, God’s beloved Son. Those who are taken from amongst men, justified, begotten and anointed by the spirit of Jehovah, and who then continue faithful unto death, will constitute the members of The Christ complete.” – Creation, 1927, p 192

While they no longer claim to be part of a “composite Christ”, in more recent times, this self-styled ‘anointed’ have proclaimed that in order to keep in a good relationship with God, one must remain united with them.

“To keep in relationship with ‘our Savior, God,’ the ‘great crowd’ needs to remain united with the remnant of spiritual Israelites.” – The Watchtower, November 15, 1979, p. 27

And finally they tell the other sheep that that attitude toward them (the “anointed”) and how they treat them will be the determining factor in their judgement by Christ.

“Your attitude toward the ‘wheatlike anointed brothers’ of Christ and the treatment you accord them, will be the determining factor as to whether you go into ‘everlasting cutting-off’ or receive ‘everlasting life’.” – The Watchtower, August 1, 1981, p. 26)

Notice in these quotes from the Watchtower that the “anointed” soften the blow of their words by referring to themselves in the third person. If you take the third-person speech out of that last quote, these who claim to be the ‘faithful slave’ are really saying:

“Your attitude toward the US and the treatment you accord US, will be the determining factor as to whether YOU go into ‘everlasting cutting-off’ or receive ‘everlasting life’.”

Similar Art Styles or Plagiarism – Which?

On a trip to my local old bookstore, I came across a set of Bible story books with illustrations that looked very much like what I have seen in Watchtower Society publications for the past several years. A friend had told me about these books and gave me some references to some pictures that appear to have been plagiarized. Shown below are three examples:

Birds

The first set is two pictures of birds, both from illustrations in two different books that depict a scene from the Garden of Eden.

The illustration on the left is from The Bible Story by Arthur S. Maxwell (Review and Herald Publishing Association 1955) Volume 1, Page 52


The one on the right is from My Book of Bible Stories (Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, Inc. 1978) Story number 3. Notice that the Watchtower’s birds are an almost exact mirror image of those from Maxwell’s.

Esau

The second set of illustrations show Esau as a young boy, standing in front of a tent, about to shoot an arrow.
esaumaxThe left picture is from Maxwell”s The Bible Story (Volume 2, Page 8 )

esauwtThe picture to the right is from the Watchtower’s My Book of Bible Stories (Story number 17).Aside from minor positioning and the Watchtower”s depiction of Esau a bit stockier, the boys are the same. Even the tent in the background is very similar. Notice that both tents have stripes going in the same direction and the positions of the two peaks of each tent in relation to Esau.

Sampson

Finally, here are two illustrations of Sampson fighting a lion.
sammaxThe one on the left is from Maxwell’s The Bible Story (Volume 3, Page 131)

samwtThe image on the right is from the Watchtower’s My Book of Bible Stories (Story number 54).

Here again, we see the Watchtower’s version of this picture is a mirror image of Maxwell’s, right down to the red shirt and headband. Notice the positions of Sampson and the lion, the positions of Sampson’s hands in relation to the lion.


Since The Bible Story was published in 1955 and the Watchtower published My Book of Bible Stories in 1978, I have to conclude that the Watchtower either plagiarized from Maxwell or both Maxwell and the Watchtower plagiarized from another source.

 

At this point, I feel compelled to quote from the January 15, 1954 The Watchtower (page 38). In an article entitled “Do You Respect Plagiarists?”, The Watchtower accuses a New York minister of the Churches of Christ named Antonio Ochoa of plagiarizing artilces in The Watchtower and Awake! and published them in the Churches of Christ paper Gospel Broadcast.

 

WHAT do you think of a man that lifts articles from one magazine and has them published in another magazine? What do you think when he attaches his name as author of the stolen articles? What do you think of him when he continues to do it after he has been caught and has promised to quit? And does the fact that he claims to be a minister of religion shock you still more?

 

I might ask readers of the Watchtower – What do you think of an organization that lifts pictures from one book and with only minor adjustments has them published in another? What do you think when that organization attaches its name to the stolen pictures? And does the fact that that organization claims to be Jehovah”s channel of communication with mankind today shock you still more?

 

Again, what do you think of the magazine that uses the plagiarized articles? What do you think of the judgment of such a magazine when it denounces as false another magazine, then turns around and prints as truth the articles plagiarized from it? What do you think of the editor that tells the injured magazine its word is worthless when it brings the plagiarism to his notice? What do you think of him when he ignores the proof sent to him? What do you think when his magazine continues to use the stolen articles? And does not the fact that this magazine poses as Christian make the plagiarism even more reprehensible?

 

Since The Bible Story was published by someone other than the Watchtower, they are considered by the Watchtower to be part of Babylon the Great, the great harlot, denounced as false by the Watchtower. So, readers of the Watchtower, what do you think of the judgement of the publishers of a book that plagiarizes from sources it considers part of Babylon the Great? And does not the fact that this book poses as Christian make the plagiarism even more reprehensible?

 

Can you have confidence in such a writer? or in the magazine that uses his plagiarized copy? or in the editor that directs it? Consider the facts, then form your opinion.

 

Yes, consider the facts, then form your opinion.
Matthew 12:37 (New World Translation): for by your words you will be declared righteous, and by your words you will be condemned.”

 

Inappropriate Behavior

Propriety is something very important within the Jehovah’s Witness culture and worship as it should be. But, the Witnesses take it to a whole new level. Many things that are part of Christian worship in other churches are viewed by Jehovah’s Witnesses as inappropriate and are noticeably absent at the Kingdom Halls of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Among these things that you will not see at Kingdom Halls are live musicians: no organists, no pianists and certainly no guitarists or drummers. Years ago, live pianists were at least an option. My wife used to play the piano at our Kingdom Hall and for the circuit assemblies. On a few occasions we even had a small orchestra at our circuit assembly. For congregations without a pianist, records and later cassette tapes and CD’s were available. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, there seemed to be a concerted effort by the circuit overseers to remove pianos and pianists from the Kingdom Halls and to utilize the recordings that were supplied by the Watchtower Society.

Several reasons were given for removing the pianos and pianists. First was that in some congregations the quality of the piano or that of the pianist was not up the standard that would be honoring to Jehovah. Second was that using the Society’s recordings contributed to unity within the organization. Finally, it was said that having live music might draw undue attention to the musician rather than to Jehovah. Today, all of the music for Jehovah’s Witness meetings are recordings that are supplied by the Watchtower Society. Along with the music, the content for the meetings is also supplied by headquarters as are the song numbers that are to accompany that content.

During the singing at the Kingdom Hall, you will also see no raising of hands or other expressions of worship that are seen in many churches. There are also no spontaneous expressions of agreement during the sermon, which is referred to as the “public talk” or “public discourse”. The only  “amen” you will normally hear at the Kingdom hall is at the end of the prayers that are said at the beginning and end of each meeting. Raising of hand in worship and saying “amen” during the public talk would be viewed as  inappropriate by the Witnesses.

As I see it now, what is called worship at the Kingdom Hall is very restrained, mostly devoid of emotion, and dry and dead.