Friday, August 22, 2008

Independent Thinking Is To Be Avoided

"Avoid Independent Thinking... How is such independent thinking manifested? A common way is by questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization." - The Watchtower January 15, 1983 p. 22
The incident of the Ethiopian eunuch is often used by the Watchtower to show that we need the help of an organization to understand the Bible.
However, reading the entire book of Acts, helps us to see that it does not say that at all.
The Ethiopian eunuch was not a Christian, but Philip was used by the Holy Spirit to lead him to Christ. The passage goes on to say: "Jehovah's spirit quickly led Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him anymore." (NWT, emphsis mine.) God led Philip to the eunuch, Philip gave the man the Gospel, baptized him, then God led him away.
Does this sound as though Jehovah God thought it necessary for the eunuch to remain in contact with a central organization? He was probably one of the first Christians in Ethiopia. If we follow the Watchtower's interpretation, the eunuch must have gone into spiritual darkness shortly thereafter, without God's organization to guide him. But, no, he did not go into darkness, for he had the Holy Spirit as his guide, comforter, and teacher. (John 14:16, 17, 26.) God often uses Christians to explain the message of salvation to unbelievers. Acts chapter 8 is not telling us that Christians must submit to a human teacher. Notice what the apostle John said on this subject later: "And as for you, the anointing that you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to be teaching you; but, as the anointing from him is teaching you about all things, and is true and is no lie, and just as it has taught you, remain in union with him." (1 John 2:27, NWT, emphasis mine.)
While the Watchtower organization does not want its members to questions their doctrines, Jehovah says differently. We are all responsible for our own salvation.

20 comments:

frank said...

keep talking craps
first of all you don't know what happens to the eunuch afterward since the bible don't say anything about that. you can only speculate
but the scriptures show there was an organization in the first century, no need to give you scriptures again about that it is now worth it.

keep yakeeeeeee yakkkkkkk

frank said...

it not worth it it is not worth it to give you scriptures
you are lost in your madness

Tom Rook said...

First of all, the Ethiopian eunuch was from and was returning to Ethiopia.

He had a job to return to.

Second...how many congregations of Jehovah's people were in Ethiopia, at this time, reasonably?

My best guess, is none.

anybody that reads the scriptures while driving a chariot is probably strong enough in "the Force, Luke", to make it on his own.

You have to be an incredibly dedicated and motivated person to cut off your genetils to keep your job.

Yikes!

Back in the days of Colonial America the sailors were made of steel and the ships were made of wood. How many like that exist today?

I think somewhere in the scripture it talks about some were eunuchs by choice, some were made eunuchs by others, and some became eunuchs for the sake of the Good News about the Christ.

Now THAT'S dedication.

Most of us are not of a soldierly mind set, an must have close association with a support group of like minded individuals to stay focused. Jesus knows this...that is why the congregational arrangement was set up.

There was a woman Witness that spent, if memory serves 30 years in a Chinese Prison with no association with a congregation,but most people do not have that kind of "true grit".

Because of two generations of dumbing down the congregations by discouraging education and the ability to think analytically, the steel has changed to wood, and the wood to soft soap.

But the idea of avoiding independent thinking is a concept that has been poorly understood ...by everybody.

This means not going beyond scripture ... nothing else!

otherwise your "Christianity" accumulates Trinities, elves from the north pole, chocolate rabbits that lay candy eggs, priests that usurp the authority of the Christ, sending your sons to war, and honoring ugliness, corruption, and death with such asinine expressions as "Happy Halloween".

Christendom has adopted ten thousand pagan traditions, gold plated them, and foisted them on honest hearted people a burden that only because they do not know the Truth, and have never known anything else, they carry this burden as "tradition".

Jehovah's Witnesses came OUT of Christendom...and the exodus is still going on. It is NOT complete.

Yes, JWs have many organizational problems, but then again three primadonna physicists working in the same office will also.

The Ethiopian eunuch lived in a different time, circumstance, and world than we do. The congregation was set up by Christ the same reasons colleges were...to educate most people to become competent ...

Somehow the Ethiopian Eunich was almost there before he noticed this "Christian" running along side his chariot.

Perhaps he had just come back from Jerusalem and a "JW" Bible study, just before Jehovah's Jewish Christian Witnesses became Jehovah's Christian Witnesses.

The correct answer is of course...we do not know....

But to compare apples with cucumbers leads to crappy conclusions.

And when there is only one apple ....eat around the worms.

Don't throw the apple away.

Tom.Rook@Technik-SA.US

Tom Rook said...

I would like to make one point perfectly clear ...for the record...when I post here, I post in open forum combat, not fellowship.

... as if I was broadcasting from radio station WBBR, Staten Island, but without the Mr. Rogers voice.

Tom.Rook@Technik-SA.US

kimmy jo said...

Jehovah God and his son Jesus Christ seek honest hearted ones and they are with them. It is not about being a part of an organization lead by the watchtower.....BE REASONABLE!

Nathan said...

Unfortunately, most of the readers don't get the sense of the excellent posts like the ones in this thread from tom rook!

very good job man, thanks for posting them

Ronde said...

Why is it that no one on either side ever explains what "independent thinking" is?

And why is it that people who quote Watchtowers do not keep them in their time context? They take an article and apply it from the beginning to now.

1983. What was happening in 1983?
There was trouble at Bethel started by Randall Watters. He thought that thinking independently made him better. It has not.

Ronde said...

"While the Watchtower organization does not want its members to questions their doctrines, Jehovah says differently. We are all responsible for our own salvation."

Still no definition of what Watchtower Organization is.

And since the doctrines make sense, what point is there in questioning?

And those questioning, have you come up with anything better?

kimmy jo said...

"Still no definition of what Watchtower Organization is."


Why do you constantly get mixed up about the watchtower??? You ronde, claim to be a JW so then you know that it is the "watchtower bible and tract society", which prints(a printing company) all the material used at the kingdom halls for all the Jehovah witnesses to learn from and give to the public(awakes and tracts). Simply put, it is a society that prints material for the Corporation Jehovah witnesses. It is how YOU get your understanding of the bible threw the watchtower societys interpretation .

OH MY.

Governing Body Letters said...

"This means not going beyond scripture ... nothing else!"
----------------------------------
Dear Tom, the Watchtower definition of no independent thinking has nothing to do with scriptures or the Bible. It has everything to do with the doctrines and teachings of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses. Those are the teachings that they don't want you to go beyond.

kimmy jo said...

Independant thinking is thinking outside the box of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society's interpetations of the Bible and the leadership of the Corporation of Jehovah's Witnesses.


The Watchtower said on Jan 15, 1983 p.22
"Avoid Independent Thinking... How is such independent thinking manifested? A common way is by questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization."

That's manipulation!

Governing Body Letters said...

"Most of us are not of a soldierly mind set, an must have close association with a support group of like minded individuals to stay focused. Jesus knows this...that is why the congregational arrangement was set up."
--------------------------
A "congregation" could consist or only 2 people. Jesus said where two or 3 are gathered in my name, there I am also. Jesus did tell the new Christian not to forsake the gathering of yourselves together. How frequently? Think of life in first century Jerusalem. Did they have time to meet together often? Maybe he meant once a year, or once every 6 months. We can only guess because no list of weekly meetings appear in the Bible.
------------------------------
Yes, taking the interpretation of the Bible away from us individuals and putting it in the hands of the Governing Body has caused the adoption of ridiculous doctrines and rules being foisted on honest hearted people:
Do not wear a beard
Women should not wear pants
Salvation lies in meeting attendance and field service
Do not celebrate bithdays because the Bible mentions that someone was beheaded on their borthday
You cannot use the pool at the YMCA
You cannot salute the flag
Celebrate Mother's Day
Celebrate Father's Day
Celebrate Grandparent's Day
Celebrate Birthdays
Celebrate Thanksgiving
Celebrate New Year's Eve or Day
Celebrate Christmas
Celebrate Halloween
Celebrate Easter
Celebrate Flag Day
Celebrate Independence Day (Fourth of July)
Celebrate St. Patrick's Day
Celebrate Valentine's Day
Sing any Holiday Songs
Eat Turkey on Thanksgiving
Create Holiday artwork in school
Join the Boy Scouts
Join the Girl Scouts
Buy Girl Scout Cookies
Become a Cheerleader
Attend class reunions
Go to the school prom
Play School Sports (No competition allowed)
Play Professional Sports
Join any organization that has ties to Christianity
Shop at the Salvation Army
Volunteer for the Salvation Army
Donate to Relief Organizations like the Red Cross, Salvation Army, Charities and more
Shop at Church run thrift stores
Shop at Church Garage Sales
Shop at any Store that has Christian ties
Contribute to the Red Cross
Become a Police Officer
Attend Alcoholics Anonymous
Have any job with a gun
Strike against a Company
Salute the Flag
Can't Stand at Public Events while others are Standing to salute the Flag
Sing the National Anthem
Go to War
Learn karate
Vote (Conscience matter now to please Governments, you will be ostracized if you do)
Run for any Public Office
Campaign for a Candidate
Contribute to the Presidential Campaign Fund on your tax return
Can join union, but not participate in its affairs
Run for class president
Join Sororities or Fraternities
Participate in holiday parties at school
Buy lottery tickets
Gamble (But they can invest in stocks and bonds which is also a gamble)
Play Bingo
Can't buy a raffle ticket
Date without supervision - young or old
Watch R rated movies
Smoke cigarettes, pipes or a cigars
Sell cigarettes, pipes or a cigars
Accept Blood
Donate Blood
Store your own blood before an operation
Wear blue jeans or casual clothes to the Kingdom Hall
Wear pants to the Kingdom Hall if you are a female
Wear skirts or dresses that are above the knee at any time
Wear any type of long hair if you are a man
Wear a beard in some Kingdom Halls and areas (judged hard)
Pierce ears if male, other body parts if female
Have any tattoos
Say curse words
Can't be hypnotized
Get divorced unless scriptural (adultery or fornication is committed by one partner) if you do divorce cannot remarry unless ex fornicates first
Toast drinks (pagan origin)
Throw rice at a wedding (pagan origin)
Say "Bless You" when someone sneezes
Say "Good Luck!", "Wish me Luck", "I was Lucky" or "You were Lucky"
Tell ghost stories
Practice Yoga
Own a Smurf
Eat Lucky Charms Cereal (References to Magical)
Throw a penny into a wishing well
Read Horoscopes
Promote anything Superstitious
Have wind charms because they represent a pagan symbol for scaring away demons
Watch TV shows, "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch", "Touched by an Angel", or "Bewitched"
Say "It was fate" or mention anything to do with "fate"
Engage in any risky acts such as: Sky Diving, Bungie Jumping & Hang Gliding
Have Jesus as your Mediator and Savior
Can't partake in the Memorial of Jesus' death, by eating the unleavened bread or drinking the wine; only allowed if you are from the elite group of the 144,000
A woman can't hold a position of responsibility in the congregation
Wear or own a Cross
Attend another Church (Spiritual Fornication)
Associate on a regular basis with nonbelievers
Associate with ex-members
Associate with disfellowshipped ones
Talk with disfellowshipped ones
Sue another Jehovah's Witness
Marry a nonbeliever (If you do, you are judged hard by the congregation)
Marry in another Church or attend a wedding in another Church
Have a funeral in another Church or attend a funeral in another Church
Pray, including holding your head down, when a nonbeliever prays
Study other religious articles not from the Society
Read negative information about the Society
Question the Watchtower Society on anything
-------------------------------
Yes, with regard to the Etiopian eunuch we do not know what happened to him. We just know that he never saw again.
So why can't we just takee the Bible at it's word. Why all this interpretation. The Bible says that the eunuch was baptized with holy spirit, which was his teacher, period. That's it. The Watchtower then should not use this scripture to support their doctrine that all christians must be taught by their organization. Let the scriptures tell their own story.

Ronde said...

Kimmy Jo said:

"Why do you constantly get mixed up about the watchtower??? You ronde, claim to be a JW so then you know that it is the "watchtower bible and tract society",

Kimmy, this blog is called Letters from the Governing Body.

Letters from the Governing body do not come from the Watchtower BTS in Brooklyn. They come from the Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses in Patterson.

The Watchtower does not do much anymore. It is the CCJW that does it all. Note the copyright of the KM.

"It is a society that prints material for the Corporation Jehovah witnesses."

There is no "Corporation Jehovah witnesses".

"It is how YOU get your understanding of the bible threw the watchtower societys interpretation ."

No, the Bible interprets itself.
And the governing body and the writing dept do the writing and teaching or interpreting as you say, they are not officers in the Watchtower anymore.


So, to answer my own question, what you refer to as the Watchtower organization, you mean the Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses, all 7 million of us.

Governing Body Letters said...

Ministerial Servant
Circuit Overseer
Pioneer
Book Study
District Convention
Auxillary Pioneer
Governing Body
Kingdom Ministry School
Watchtower
Awake
Publisher
Non baptized publisher
Zone Overseer
Return Visit
Presiding Overseer
Kingdom Songs
Irregular Publisher
Active Publisher
Watchtower Bible & Tract Society
Assembly Hall
And the list goes on and on.....

Tom, before you criticize other religions for their traditions and teachings outside of the Bible, perhaps you had better pull the rafter out of the eye of the religion you are supporting.
Jehovah's Witnesses like to boast that they do not go beyond the things written in the Bible when, in fact, they have built a religion on teachings and doctrine that are found no where in the scriptures.

Ronde said...

GBLetters said:
"Dear Tom, the Watchtower definition of no independent thinking has nothing to do with scriptures or the Bible. It has everything to do with the doctrines and teachings of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses. Those are the teachings that they don't want you to go beyond."

Yes, in 1983.

But you have never said what doctrines or teachings that you disagree with.

Since the doctrines and teachings are correct, I don't worry about any of this.

kevin said...

May I suggest that it's ONLY by independent thinking that a person will be able to remove him/herself enough from the WT teaching that he/she will allow him/herself to be convicted of sin by the Holy Spirit (John 16:8), see Jesus' work as sufficient for his/her salvation, and come to Him in faith, and be truly regenerated as a born-again son/daughter of God. John chapter 9 is one of my favorite passages along these lines. Jesus healed a blind man, then the leaders threw the guy out of the synagogue, because he simply testified favorably about what Jesus had done to him. The same will happen to anyone among JW's who finds new life by faith in Jesus; he/she will be thrown out of the congregation. But, take heart; there is great reward to those who are treated like this for Jesus' sake. (Matt 5:10-12)

Ronde said...

GBLetters said:

"Maybe he meant once a year, or once every 6 months. We can only guess because no list of weekly meetings appear in the Bible."

And it does not have to have one. That us up to the discretion of the congregation's overseers. But the overseers of the congregation, aka the governing body, decided on meeting times.

"Yes, taking the interpretation of the Bible away from us individuals and putting it in the hands of the Governing Body has caused the adoption of ridiculous doctrines and rules being foisted on honest hearted people:"

Not true at all. Christians do not have rules and your thinking of them that way shows you don't understand the religion.


"Do not wear a beard
Women should not wear pants"

Men can wear beards and women pants. But since our objective is to glorify God and doing those things does not glorify God or our ministry, we refrain.


"Salvation lies in meeting attendance and field service"

Not by itself. But the fact that Heb 10:25 says " encouraging one another, and all the more so as YOU behold the day drawing near."
Shows that it is a warning that we need them as the day draws near. Do you despise that counsel?


"Do not celebrate bithdays because the Bible mentions that someone was beheaded on their borthday"

Not so. We don't celebrate them because Jesus' was not important enough to note the date and any celebration. If his was not important enough, than how can ours be?

"You cannot use the pool at the YMCA
You cannot salute the flag
Celebrate Mother's Day
Celebrate Father's Day
Celebrate Grandparent's Day"

I sure can use the pool at the YMCA and have, but I have my own.
It is not that we can't celebrate those things, but we choose not to be followers of the world or slaves to the celebrations of the world. Think about it, you are slaves of those dates.

"Celebrate Independence Day (Fourth of July)"

Why would those not in America celebrate July 4th? And which independence? Did you forget that JWs are multinational?


"Eat Turkey on Thanksgiving"

Many eat turkey on Thanksgiving. It is a personal choice.

"Create Holiday artwork in school
Join the Boy Scouts
Join the Girl Scouts
Buy Girl Scout Cookies
Become a Cheerleader"

Why would we want to do those things?

"Attend class reunions"

I attended my reunions.

"Go to the school prom
Play School Sports (No competition allowed)"

That is not why we choose not to do those things. We don't want to waste our time on worthless pursuits.

"Play Professional Sports"

It is difficult for non-JWs to get in professional teams and sports, how likely would JWs get in? Duh.


"Donate to Relief Organizations like the Red Cross, Salvation Army, Charities and more
Shop at Church run thrift stores
Shop at Church Garage Sales
Shop at any Store that has Christian ties"

WE can do any of those things if we choose.


"Contribute to the Red Cross
Become a Police Officer"
Attend Alcoholics Anonymous"
Have any job with a gun"

There are many Witnesses that are cops. But they choose not to have guns, mainly because they don't know how to use them.
They can attend AA. They can contribute to whomever they want.


"Strike against a Company"

We can strike if we want.

"Salute the Flag
Can't Stand at Public Events while others are Standing to salute the Flag
Sing the National Anthem
Go to War"

Which flag? Which anthem? Which side of the war?

"Learn karate"

We can learn self defense. We choose not to learn the art of war.


"Vote (Conscience matter now to please Governments, you will be ostracized if you do)"

Voting for non-political things has always been a conscience matter.

"Run for any Public Office"

Which office? Some we can.

"Campaign for a Candidate
Contribute to the Presidential Campaign Fund on your tax return
Can join union, but not participate in its affairs
Run for class president
Join Sororities or Fraternities
Participate in holiday parties at school"

Why would we want to?
get real.

"Buy lottery tickets
Gamble (But they can invest in stocks and bonds which is also a gamble)
Play Bingo
Can't buy a raffle ticket"

Sure we can.


"Date without supervision - young or old
Watch R rated movies"

Sure we can.


"Smoke cigarettes, pipes or a cigars
Sell cigarettes, pipes or a cigars
Accept Blood
Donate Blood
Store your own blood before an operation"

You are an idiot. Who would want to do that.


"Wear blue jeans or casual clothes to the Kingdom Hall
Wear pants to the Kingdom Hall if you are a female
Wear skirts or dresses that are above the knee at any time
Wear any type of long hair if you are a man
Wear a beard in some Kingdom Halls and areas (judged hard)"

We can wear those and do. But if we want to glorify God we choose not to.

That is enough of your lunacy.

You obviously do not know anything about JWS. You take things in the magazines and KMs too literally.

kimmy jo said...

ronde contradicts herself again,

"So, to answer my own question, what you refer to as the Watchtower organization, you mean the Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses, all 7 million of us."

ronde is nit picky,

"Kimmy, this blog is called Letters from the Governing Body."

Sorry, I called it GBL.

Ronde said...

Kimmy Jo

"'Kimmy, this blog is called Letters from the Governing Body.'

Sorry, I called it GBL."

I meant that since the blog is Letters from the Governing Body ..., why do people refer to books copyrighted the WTBTS, such as you mentioned here

"Independant thinking is thinking outside the box of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society's interpetations of the Bible and the leadership of the Corporation of Jehovah's Witnesses."

That is not the governing body.

kimmy jo said...

ronde,

black is white ,
white is black.