Questions to Ask Your Bible Study Conductor
Baptism as one of Jehovah's Witnesses is a significant step, as it is a life time commitment to the Watchtower Society. At Matthew 28:18, Jesus commanded that a person be baptised in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. However, baptism as a Jehovah's Witness also stipulates becoming part of the Watchtower organization.
The second question for baptism states:
"(2) Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah's Witnesses in association with God's spirit-directed organization?" Watchtower 1985 Jun 1 p.30
Such a baptism binds you to all Watchtower Society rules, regardless of whether or not they are from the Bible or you agree with them. Deviation from the rules or disagreeing with the teachings can lead to a life time of shunning by all your Witness family and friends. As such, it is important to be fully aware of what being a Jehovah's Witness entails, including its history and teachings.
Pamphlet for Studies
Here are questions that you should ask your study conductor, prior to becoming overly involved. The aim of these questions is not to have a doctrinal debate, as the conductor will question your motives and will not accept your reasoning. Rather, simply asking thought provoking questions will stimulate educated responses to assist get a better understanding of Watchtower doctrine. An occasional comment may be necessary to make sure the answer is logical or correct. A Witness will deflect to another topic when you raise difficult questions, so be vigilant in preventing this from happening.
Before asking each question it is worth reading the corresponding section on this site. Clicking on the heading will take you to a discussion of the question, with quotes showing what the Watchtower teaching is. The answer you are likely to receive from a Witness appears in red.
Who will be saved?
Everyone in Jehovah's organization.
Does that means only Jehovah's Witnesses be saved?
It is not for us to judge, some other people may yet come to God's organization.
So that means billions of people currently are not eligible for salvation.
Why do you think most people are so bad God will destroy them?
That is not how we look at it, but the Bible does say that a person needs to be part of Jehovah's organization to be saved.
Do you think I will die at Armageddon if I don't become a Jehovah's Witness?
Why do you preach door to door?
Matthew 24:14 says this good news of the kingdom will be preached and then the end will come.
What is the good news?
And what is the end?
Armageddon, when God destroys the wicked.
So are you saying that the good news Jesus was referring to is that God is soon going to kill billions of people if they don't become Jehovah's Witnesses?
Why does the Watchtower teach that Jesus is not our mediator?
That's not right, Jesus is our mediator.
I researched this online and Watchtower publications definitely say that Jesus is only the mediator for the 144,000, yet the Bible says Jesus is mediator for all mankind.
You cannot believe the lies apostates put online.
I can show you the Watchtower quotes, that way you can verify for me if it is true.
"Likewise, the Greater Moses, Jesus Christ, is not the Mediator between Jehovah God and all mankind. He is the Mediator between his heavenly Father, Jehovah God, and the nation of spiritual Israel, which is limited to only 144,000 members." Worldwide Security under the Prince of Peace (1986) p.10
Why do Jehovah's Witnesses say Jesus returned in 1914?
The prophecy of the seven times in Daniel shows the Gentile times started in 607 B.C.E. and ended in 1914.
Why is 607 B.C. used when virtually all historians and other religions say it was 587 B.C.?
A person should accept what (we interpret) the Bible to say over what historians say.
So the Watchtower requires historians to arrive at 537 B.C as the end of Jerusalem's desolation, but rejects that same history for calculating when it started?
If the last days started in 1914, why are we living in the best time in all history to be alive?
No, we are living in the worst time ever. There have never been so many earthquakes, so much crime, and what about the world wars.
Actually, we are living in best time in history. Earthquakes have been constant for millennia, and we have less violence, war and food shortages than ever before. Life expectancy has doubled over the last 200 years. If you feel life was better before 1914, which century would you pick to live in?
Why has the New World Translation added the word Jehovah to the New Testament when it does not appear in a single discovered document?
Since Jehovah appears in the Old Testament of course Jesus must have used it when quoting these Scriptures, otherwise the Bible would be inconsistent.
Then why doesn't it appear in any existing manuscripts?
Because it was removed after Jesus death.
If you are suggesting that God did not prevent his name being removed from the New Testament without trace, how can I trust anything else in the Bible?
Why don't Jehovah's Witnesses have blood transfusions?
Scriptures like Acts 15:28 show blood must not be used but poured out onto the ground.
What parts of blood can be used?
Don't fractions of blood come from stored blood?
Well yes, ... but using them is a conscience matter.
If you can take blood fractions can you donate blood?
Doesn't that seem like a double standard?
I have heard that Jehovah's Witnesses disfellowship and shun people. What are all the reasons?
For gross sins like adultery and apostasy
How about things not specifically mentioned in the Bible, such as for gambling, smoking, drunkenness, Christmas and so on? (Possibly print out the list of over 30 reasons.)
What is the process?
Meet with 3 elders for a Judicial committee.
How are people treated and for how long?
Must not be talked to until they repent.
What if they never repent?
Well they wouldn't be spoken to again
What about family?Family can be spoken to in emergencies.
Wow, that sounds a lot like how members of a cult behaves.
Jehovah's Witnesses don't worship the Trinity?
You are correct, we must only worship Jehovah God.
But didn't Jehovah's Witnesses worship Jesus until the 1950s?
No, they never worshipped Jesus.
I am quite certain that they did, would you like me to find the old references for you?
Haven't Jehovah's Witnesses had a number of false time-of-the-end prophecies?
They were not false, they were just incomplete. You would have to agree 1914 was a turning point in history.
How about other years like 1925? Millions Now Living Will Never Die p.89 said that "we may confidently expect that 1925 will mark the return of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the faithful prophets of old." The Watchtower Society even built a house called Beth Sarim for them. Isn't that a false prophesy?
It was not a prophesy, it was an interpretation
The Watchtower Society do call themselves a prophet. (w72 4/1 p.197, w59 1/15 pp.39-41, w64 10/1 p.601, g86 6/8 p.9) Wouldn't that make Deuteronomy 18:20-22 applicable?
"However, the prophet who presumes to speak in my name a word that I have not commanded him to speak or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet must die. And in case you should say in your heart: How shall we know the word that Jehovah has not spoken? When the prophet speaks in the name of Jehovah and the word does not occur or come true, that is the word that Jehovah did not speak."
When did Jehovah's Witnesses start?
There have always been Jehovah's Witnesses.
I thought they were quite a new religion?
Russell started the Watchtower Society in the 1870s, but that was prophesied by Jesus who said the virgins would awaken in the last days.
But you said there have always been Jehovah's Witnesses. So who were they before Russell?
We don't know, but there have always been some worshippers of Jehovah.
So which Jehovah's Witnesses did Russell get his teachings from?
Well no one, God directed him.
Does Holy Spirit direct the Watchtower Society when it forms doctrine?
What Scripture shows only the Watchtower Society is directed by Holy Spirit?
The parable of the Faithful and Discreet slave showed that in the last days Jehovah would choose a special group of people.
When were they chosen?
Though the Watchtower Society was formed in the 1800s, it was not until 1919 that they were chosen, once they had cleansed themselves of false doctrine.
But in 1919 they were still teaching about pyramids, that Abraham was going to be resurrected onto earth in 1925, that Jesus should be worshipped, and celebrating birthdays and Christmas is acceptable, things now taught as being wrong.
Why have there been all these wrong doctrine if holy spirit directs the Watchtower Society?
Proverbs said that the light would get brighter.
That sounds like an excuse for error that any religion could use. I was reading that the Watchtower said the end would be in 1914 and then 1925 and now it is still in the future? A lot of these changes sound like it is different light, not brighter.
Does Holy Spirit direct the Watchtower Society when it appoints elders?
So why are elders appointed when they have been committing serious wrongs, such as shown with the Watchtower Society being forced to pay millions of dollars in compensation to victims of pedophile elders?
Knowing these things, is this the type of Organization that you want to serve?
If you ask these questions several things may happen.
- You will be accused of reading lies from apostates.
- It may disturb your study conductor and they will not return.
- Since a new Witness will not be able to answer the questions satisfactorily they may feel it is due to their own inadequacy and instead bring back a more experienced person such as an elder.
- An experienced Witness will not be comfortable being confronted with such questions and is likely to feel that you have bad motives and the study will be terminated.
On the other hand, a searching Witness may be enlightened by your questions, just as you will find it enlightening to observe their response and reactions to your questions.
Paul Grundy 2005 - 2016