Jehovah's Witnesses is a millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with nontrinitarian beliefs distinct from mainstream Christianity. The group claims a worldwide membership of more than 8.2 million adherents involved in evangelism, convention attendance figures of more than 15 million, and an annual Memorial attendance of more than 19.9 million. Jehovah's Witnesses are directed by the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses, a group of elders in Brooklyn, New York, which establishes all doctrines based on its interpretations of the Bible. They prefer to use their own translation, the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures, although their literature occasionally quotes and cites other translations. They believe that the destruction of the present world system at Armageddon is imminent, and that the establishment of God's kingdom over the earth is the only solution for all problems faced by humanity.*
*Information taken directly from Wikipedia
If you are a Jehovah's Witness, please understand that I am not against you as an individual. I am not an apostate from the Watchtower organization, and, of course, I was never baptized as a Jehovah's Witness. However, when I was 17, I studied with the Jehovah's Witnesses for a couple of months but quit. Unfortunately, they used the Watchtower Magazine equally and sometime more than the Bible, and they couldn't answer all my questions. All I wanted to study was the Bible since that is God's Word.
As a Jehovah's Witness, you have been taught from the Bible and the Watchtower organization. You’ve attended numerous meetings and are convinced that what you believe is the truth. You also believe the Trinity is a demonic doctrine and that Christendom is an apostate group preaching a false gospel. Additionally, you are taught the Watchtower organization is the true channel of God’s revelation to His church on earth. You are taught that you are in "The Truth," but believing it does not make it so. I am sure you agree with this and respond by saying that your beliefs are in agreement with the Bible. After all, you study it deeply and often and have validated your beliefs with the Word of God. I don’t deny that you study, but when you study, you study under the Watchtower's guidance and allow it to shape your understanding and thinking of the Bible and its doctrines.
Please consider these quotes from the Watchtower Magazine that verify what I am saying:
- "All who want to understand the Bible should appreciate that the "greatly diversified wisdom of God" can become known only through Jehovah's channel of communication, the faithful and discreet slave."1
- "Thus the Bible is an organizational book and belongs to the Christian congregation as an organization, not to individuals, regardless of how sincerely they may believe that they can interpret the Bible."2
In short, you are led by what the Watchtower says the Bible says, but if the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society is from God, then . . .
- Why has it made false prophecies?
- Why has it altered the translation of the Bible?
- Why does the Watchtower say that you will fall into apostasy if you read the Bible without the Watchtower? See their quotes.
- Why are you not allowed to examine your own organization and its problems?
- Why does it tell you what to think and do?
Have you checked the documentation from the Watchtower Magazine? How do you know that the Watchtower is correct? Because it says it is?
Please don’t be offended by this, but when a group claims to be the prophet of God yet mistranslates the Bible, takes verses out of context, makes false prophecies, and misquotes authorities all to make its position valid, its credibility is lost. It cannot be from God.
But you will never know that unless you "examine ALL things." Unfortunately, as a Jehovah's Witness, you are only encouraged to study what the Watchtower and Awake magazines tell you to study. That means you can't really check up on its false prophecies on your own. Instead, you must trust what it tells you about its own false prophecies. In addition, you are instructed to not take any literature from "apostate Christendom." This way, you will have far less opportunity to be challenged, something the Watchtower organization doesn't want to happen.
The Watchtower Magazine teaches by asking the questions and giving the answers. Sometimes it even uses a Bible reference (often out of context) to back up what it says. It all looks good and sounds good from your perspective, but it is a false method of study. The Watchtower organization tells you what to think and what to do. If you say that isn't true and that the Watchtower Organization is God's organization on earth, then you are simply repeating what the Watchtower tells you.
The Bible alone is sufficient, but the Watchtower denies this:
"From time to time, there have arisen from among the ranks of Jehovah's people those who, like the original Satan, have adopted an independent, faultfinding attitude . . . They say that it is sufficient to read the Bible exclusively, either alone or in small groups at home. But, strangely, through such 'Bible reading,' they have reverted right back to the apostate doctrines that commentaries by Christendom's clergy were teaching 100 years ago . . . "3
What are the apostate doctrines: Trinity? Hell? Jesus is God? Funny thing is that, according to the Watchtower if you study the Bible by itself, you will come to believe these things! Could it be that apart from the selected questions, answers, Scripture quotes, and direction of the Watchtower teaching that the Bible actually does teach these "apostate doctrines"? If you don't check for yourself and only believe the Watchtower, you'll never know.
Do you want to trust your eternal soul to the teachings of several men headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, who claim to be the directors of God's organization on earth? Do you? Eternity is a long time to be wrong.
- 1.The Watchtower, Oct. 1, 1994, p. 8.
- 2.The Watchtower, Oct. 1, 1967, p. 587.
- 3.The Watchtower, Aug. 15, 1981, emphasis added.
*Original Post: www.carm.org
The Jehovah's Witnesses was begun by Charles Taze Russell in 1872. He was born on February 16, 1852, the son of Joseph L. and Anna Eliza Russell. He had great difficulty in dealing with the doctrine of eternal hell fire, and in his studies came to deny not only eternal punishment but also the Trinity, the deity of Christ, and the Holy Spirit. When Russell was 18, he organized a Bible class in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1879, he sought to popularize his aberrant ideas on doctrine. He co-published The Herald of the Morning magazine with its founder, N. H. Barbour, and by 1884, Russell controlled the publication and renamed it The Watchtower Announcing Jehovah's Kingdom and founded Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society (now known as the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society). The first edition of The Watchtower magazine was only 6,000 copies each month. Today the Witnesses' publishing complex in Brooklyn, New York, churns out 100,000 books and 800,000 copies of its two magazines--daily!
Russell claimed that the Bible could be only understood according to his interpretations--a dangerous arrangement since he controlled what was written in the Watchtower magazine. This kind of assertion is typical among leaders of cult religions.
After the death of Russell on Oct. 31, 1916, a Missouri lawyer named Joseph Franklin Rutherford took over the presidency of the Watch Tower Society which was known then as the International Bible Students Association. In 1931, he changed the name of the organization to "The Jehovah's Witnesses."
After Rutherford's death, Nathan Knorr took over. After Knorr, Frederick William Franz became president.
The Society was led by Mr. Henschel who died in 2003. The group has over 4 million members worldwide. The Watchtower Society statistics indicate that 740 house calls are required to recruit each of the nearly 200,000 new members who join every year.
The Jehovah's Witnesses have several ‘book studies' each week. The members are not required to attend, but there is a level of expectation that gently urges converts to participate. It is during these ‘book studies' that the Jehovah's Witness is constantly exposed to counter Christian teachings. The average Jehovah's Witness with his constant Watchtower indoctrination could easily pummel the average Christian when it comes to defending his beliefs.
The Jehovah's Witnesses vehemently portray the doctrine of the Trinity as pagan in origin and that Christendom, as a whole, has bought the lie of the devil. Along with denying the Trinity is an equally strong denial of the deity of Christ, the deity of the Holy Spirit, the belief in hell, and eternal conscious punishment in hell.
*Original Post: www.carm.org
These are the teachings of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society documented from their own writings.
- There is one God in one person, Make Sure of All Things, p. 188. (See False God).
- There is no Trinity, Let God be True, 2nd Ed., pp. 100-101, Should You Believe in the Trinity? p. 7, Watchtower, 2/1/1960, p. 94, Why Do You Believe in the Trinity? (See False Trinity).
- The Holy Spirit is a force, not alive, Reasoning from the Scriptures, 1985, pp. 406-407. (See False Holy Spirit).
- The Holy Spirit is God's impersonal active force, The Watchtower, June 1, 1952,
- Jehovah's first creation was his 'only-begotten Son' . . . was used by Jehovah in
creating all other things," Aid to Bible Understanding, pp. 390-391.
- Jesus was Michael the archangel who became a man, The Watchtower, May 15,
1963, p. 307, The New World, 284.
- Jesus was only a perfect man, not God in flesh, Reasoning from the Scriptures,
1985, p. 306.
- Jesus did not rise from the dead in His physical body, Awake! July 22, 1973, p. 4.
- Jesus was raised "not a human creature, but a spirit." Let God be True, p. 276.
- Jesus was born again, The Watchtower, Nov. 15, 1954, p. 682.
- Jesus did not die on a cross but on a stake, Reasoning from the Scriptures, 1985,
- Jesus began His invisible rule over the earth in 1914, The Truth Shall Make You Free,
- Jesus' ransom sacrifice did not include Adam.
- "The man Adam is not included in those ransomed. Why not? Because he was a willful sinner, was justly sentenced to death, and died deservedly and God would not reverse his judgment and give Adam life," Let God be True, p. 119, copyright 1946.
- "There was no hope for Adam or Eve because they willfully chose to disobey God. But what about their offspring, including us?"http://www.watchtower.org/e/bh/article_05.htm
- Their church is the self-proclaimed prophet of God, The Watchtower, April 1,
1972, p. 197.
- They claim to be the only channel of God's truth, The Watchtower, Feb. 15,
1981, p. 19.
- Only their church members will be saved, The Watchtower, Feb. 15, 1979, p. 30.
- Good works are necessary for salvation, Studies in the Scriptures, Vol. 1,
pp. 150, 152.
- The soul ceases to exist after death, Let God be True, pp. 59, 60, 67.
- There is no hell of fire where the wicked are punished, Let God be True, pp. 79, 80.
- Only 144,000 Jehovah's Witness go to heaven, Reasoning from the Scriptures,
1985, pp. 166-167, 361, Let God be True, p. 121.
- Only the 144,000 Jehovah's Witness are born again. Reasoning from the
Scriptures, 1985, p. 76, Watchtower 11/15/54, p. 681.
- Only the 144,000 may take communion.
- Blood transfusions are a sin, Reasoning from the Scriptures, 1985, pp. 72-73.
- The Cross is a pagan symbol and should not be used, Reasoning from the
Scriptures, 1985, pp. 90-92.
- Salvation is by faith and what you do, Studies in the Scriptures, Vol. 1, pp.
- It is possible to lose your salvation, Reasoning from the Scriptures, 1985, pp.
- The universe is billions of years old, Your will Be Done on Earth, p. 43.
- Each of the 6 creative days of God in Genesis 1, was 7,000 years long.
Therefore, Man was created toward the end of 42,000 years of earth's
preparation, Let God be True, p. 168.
- They also refuse to vote, salute the flag, sing the "Star Spangled Banner," or
celebrate Christmas or birthdays. They are not allowed to serve in the armed
- Satan was entrusted with the obligation and charged with the duty of
overseeing the creation of the earth, Children, p. 55.
*Original Post: www.carm.org
According to Jehovah's Witness' theology, God is a single person, not a Trinity, who does not know all things and is not everywhere. He first created Michael the Archangel through whom He created all "other things," including the universe, the earth, Adam and Eve, etc. This creative work took God 42,000 years. At one point, The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society taught that God ruled the universe from somewhere in the Pleiades star system. They have since modified this to say that the "Pleiades can no longer be considered the center of the universe and it would be unwise for us to try to fix God's throne as being at a particular spot in the universe."1 Such changes and even contradictions in teaching are frequent in the Watchtower organization, and when a doctrine changes, they tell their followers that the light of truth is getting brighter.
After Adam sinned, the paradise which God had created for them was ruined. So, God instituted a system of redemption which was revealed in the Bible and would ultimately lead to the crucifixion of Jesus the Messiah. But, in the meantime, God needed to have a visible, theocratic organization on earth to accurately represent Him. Throughout history, this true organization had a remnant of faithful Jehovah's Witnesses (Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, etc.,), but it wasn't until the late 1800's that Charles Taze Russell formally began what is now known as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society which is run out of Brooklyn, New York. This organization claims to be the only true channel of God's truth on earth today and that it alone can properly interpret God's Word since it is the angel directed prophet of God on earth.
When it came time for the savior to be born, Michael the Archangel became a human in the form of Jesus. Jesus grew and kept all the laws of God and never sinned. Finally, when Jesus died, it was not on a cross but on a torture stake where he bore the sins of mankind--but this did not include Adam's sins. Jesus rose from the dead as a spirit, not physically (his body was dissolved and taken by God), and during his visitations to people on earth, he manifested a temporary physical body for them to see and touch. Thus began the true Christian church of Jehovah's followers.
Throughout history there have been faithful Jehovah's witnesses who have managed to keep The Truth in spite of the "demonic" doctrine of Trinitarianism that has permeated the Christian church in "Christendom." Christendom is filled with pastors who are antichrists in churches run by Satan and who support the earthly governments which are all of the devil. In other words, all of Christianity is false, and only the Jehovah's Witness "theocratic" organization led by several men in Brooklyn, New York, is true.
In the late 1800's, a young man of 18 years by the name of Charles Taze Russell organized a Bible class in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 1879, he sought to popularize his ideas on doctrine, so he co-published The Herald of the Morning magazine with its founder, N. H. Barbour, and by 1884, Russell controlled the publication and renamed it The Watchtower Announcing Jehovah's Kingdom and founded Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society (now known as the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society). Russell served as the teacher and guide for the organization which taught that Jesus returned invisibly in 1914 and is now reigning in heaven. When Jesus finally returns physically to earth, which will happen at the time of the Battle of Armageddon, He will set up his earthly 1,000-year kingdom.
During this 1000-year period, people will be resurrected and have a second chance to receive eternal salvation by following the principles of Jehovah's Organization on earth known as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. After the millennium, those who reject God and His organization will be annihilated, that is, they will cease to exist. The rest of the Jehovah's Witness who have faithfully followed God's organization on earth will be saved from eternal annihilation and reside forever on Paradise earth. Heaven, however, is a place for a special group of 144,000 Jehovah's Witnesses--the only ones who are "born again" and who alone are allowed to take communion in their annual communion service. These are the ones who have "immortal life." All other Witnesses have "everlasting life." Those with immortal life do not have resurrected bodies. They have "spirit bodies." Those on Paradise Earth have everlasting life and consists of a resurrected body that must be maintained through eating, rest, etc.
When you study with the Jehovah's Witnesses, you agree to attend five meetings a week where you are taught from Watchtower literature. You cannot be baptized until you have studied their material for at least six months and have answered numerous questions before a panel of elders. Men are not supposed to have long hair or wear beards, and women are to dress in modest apparel. They refuse to vote, salute the flag, sing the "Star Spangled Banner," celebrate birthdays or Christmas, won't take blood transfusions, and they can't join the armed forces. A schedule of door-to-door canvassing is required where you distribute the Watchtower literature, acquire donations, and forward all monies to the headquarters in Brooklyn, New York.
If you ever leave the Jehovah's Witness organization, you are considered an apostate and are to be shunned.
- 1.Watchtower, 11/15/53, p. 703.
*Original Post: www.carm.org
The answer to the question is, "No. It is not Christian." Like all non-Christian cults, the Jehovah's Witness' organization distorts the essential doctrines of Christianity. It denies the deity of Christ, His physical resurrection, and salvation by grace. These make it non-Christian. In addition, to support its erring doctrines, the Watchtower organization (which is the author and teacher of all official Jehovah's Witness' theology) has altered the Bible to make it agree with its changing and non-Christian teachings.
Typical with cults that use the Bible to support its position is a host of interpretive errors:
- Taking verses out of their immediate context.
- Refusing to read verses in the entire Biblical context.
- Inserting their theological presuppositions into the text.
- Altering the Biblical text to suit their needs.
- Latching onto one verse to interpret a host of others.
- Changing the meanings of words.
- Proclaiming some passages to be figurative when they contradict their doctrines.
- Adding to the Word of God.
Additionally, the Jehovah's Witness' organization requires of its members regular weekly attendance at their "Bible Study" meetings where they are repeatedly indoctrinated with anti-Christian teachings. This is done by reading the Watchtower magazine, following along with what it says, reading the questions it asks, and reciting the answers it gives. In other words, the Watchtower Organization carefully trains its members to let the Organization do their thinking for them. For confirmation of this, please read Does the Watchtower organization control the JW's thinking?
The Witnesses are told that they will be persecuted when they go door-to-door teaching their doctrines. They are further told that this is simply the enemy fighting against God's organization because they are in "the truth." So, when someone disagrees with them, they are conditioned to reflect on what the Watchtower has told them. They then feel confirmed in being in God's true organization on earth (like all cults claim). They are strongly encouraged to have friends and acquaintances that are only JW's, thereby keeping outside examination to a minimum. They are told to shun those who leave their group, for in this way there is no way to see why someone has left and no way to find out that they are in error from those who have found the truth in Christ. They are conditioned to shy away from any real Biblically knowledgeable person. An example of this is frequently found on the Internet. I was once banned from a Jehovah's Witness' chat room after I not only answered their objections to the Trinity and deity of Christ but also challenged them in return. Subsequently, my name was passed around to all other Jehovah's Witness' rooms where I was banned from them as well. This is a frequent occurrence on the Internet where the Jehovah's Witnesses are alive and well. It is obvious that critical examination of their doctrines is not encouraged by the Watchtower Organization.
The Jehovah's Witnesses consider themselves to be Christians because they believe they are serving the true and living God. Like many cults, they think they are the only true church on earth. Yet, they deny the Trinity, the deity of Christ, the personhood of the Holy Spirit, Jesus' physical resurrection, and salvation by grace through faith.
The Jehovah's Witnesses are discouraged from looking into Jehovah's Witness' history or old Watchtower literature which is replete with contradictions, altered doctrines, and false prophecies. Instead, they are indoctrinated repeatedly against basic Christian doctrines (Trinity, deity of Christ, etc.,) and into the notion that they alone are the true servants of God and that all others are either in "Christendom" or simply unbelievers.
Primarily, the Jehovah's Witness' organization is a mind-control organization that uses its people to pass out literature and send in "donations" to the headquarters in Brooklyn, New York.
"Thus the Bible is an organizational book and belongs to the Christian congregation as an organization and not to individuals, regardless of how sincerely they may believe that they can interpret the Bible."1
The Watchtower organization of the Jehovah's Witnesses is a non-Christian organization that uses its people to promulgate false doctrines, collects "contributions" for distribution of a multitudinous amount of literature, and expands its grip into the lives of its members and their families.
It is a non-Christian cult.
- 1.The Watchtower, Oct. 1, 1967, p. 587.
*Original Post: www.carm.org
The Jehovah's Witnesses are not, and cannot be considered a Christian religion because they deny that salvation only comes by the grace of God through faith in the work of Christ alone. They believe one MUST do works such as witnessing, and going door-to-door, in order to be saved. Any religion that takes away from the redeeming power of God, and puts it in the hands of man, through his works, is a very dangerous religion in which there is no salvation.