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Author Topic: Jehovah Witness Co-worker...  (Read 4188 times) Average Rating: 0
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Clancy Boy
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« Reply #45 on: December 27, 2010, 12:19:02 AM »

Grace and Peace,

I hope everyone has had a wonderful Advent as we enter into the Feast of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ.

I recently started a new full time job (Thanks be to God) and discovered that one of my co-workers has watched me cross myself at lunch and we had a short but spirited discussion about Christmas and Jesus' Godhood and whatnot.

Does anyone have knowledge of Jehovah Witnesses? What they belief and how to present the Ancient Church to them in a way that is respectful and loving?

My Grandmother was a JW. When I was a child, she tried to make me into one. While I hated it, and still think it's warped, she planted the Jesus seed in my heart! But that's another story... Smiley Anyway, they don't celebrate holidays (birthdays, Christmas, etc.), they aren't aloud to sing national anthems (I don't think), they have virtually no ascetic practice, they will not accept blood transfusions, and perhaps most importantly, they don't believe that Jesus is/was God. They worship Jehovah, not Jesus. And as you probably know, they are all about door-to-door proselytizing. They worship at the Kingdom Hall and read Awake! magazines, and have the most dry and drab religious gatherings possible. And it's really pretty cult-like, I think. That's all I have for you! Sorry if I offended anyone.

Their great rivals are the Mormons, who are also big proselytizers and who rival them in drabness.
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Clancy Boy
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« Reply #46 on: December 27, 2010, 12:29:18 AM »

Know your Bible and know your history. It's really best to have a good understanding of Church history when you're dealing with JW's. They see themselves as a "restoration church" of the Apostles-- so asking them questions about why they don't use the Septuagint, how their church could be "invisible" for 19 centuries, etc. are really good questions to ask them. They're good at twisting scripture to fit their views, just remember you have the Tradition of the Apostles though. Smiley

It's a message specifically tailored to a Protestant audience.  Apostolic authority and revelation are two things no Protestant church has, so it's kind of an appealing presentation if you're a Lutheran or an Anglican, or some other religion founded by some guy.

And of course no Protestant would consider becoming a Catholic, whose crimes have been extensively cataloged and which many Protestants still believe is controlled by Satan.  So if a church with an Apostolic foundation is what you're after, JW (and Mormonism) are your only options.

None of these people have ever heard of the Orthodox church.  It's far far away, very foreign looking and probably some kind of Islam or something.  Orthodoxy is exactly what most Protestants are all looking for but shhh the true gospel of Jesus Christ is a secret and not to be talked about with outsiders!  I think Jesus gave specific instructions before he left that it not be shared.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2010, 12:31:26 AM by Clancy Boy » Logged
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« Reply #47 on: December 27, 2010, 12:34:49 AM »

Know your Bible and know your history. It's really best to have a good understanding of Church history when you're dealing with JW's. They see themselves as a "restoration church" of the Apostles-- so asking them questions about why they don't use the Septuagint, how their church could be "invisible" for 19 centuries, etc. are really good questions to ask them. They're good at twisting scripture to fit their views, just remember you have the Tradition of the Apostles though. Smiley

It's a message specifically tailored to a Protestant audience.  Apostolic authority and revelation are two things no Protestant church has, so it's kind of an appealing presentation if you're a Lutheran or an Anglican, or some other religion founded by some guy.

Not a good choice of Protestant denominations, since those movements are splinters of the RCC, not self created, and hold to apostolic succession (in theory).

None of these people have ever heard of the Orthodox church.  It's far far away, very foreign looking and probably some kind of Islam or something.  Orthodoxy is exactly what most Protestants are all looking for but shhh the true gospel of Jesus Christ is a secret and not to be talked about with outsiders!  I think Jesus gave specific instructions before he left that it not be shared.

LOL!
« Last Edit: December 27, 2010, 12:37:26 AM by Azurestone » Logged


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« Reply #48 on: December 27, 2010, 01:05:59 AM »

Hi.

One Christmas day while having dinner with my family, back in 2003, my family (Catholic) started discussing religion. My brother started talking about what he believed about Jesus Christ. I was educated in a Catholic High School, so I knew that what he was espousing was Arianism, and I told him so. Being told by the priest at my church that Arianism survives within the sect of the Jehova's witness, I asked him:" are you a Jehovah's Witness? He looked at me strangely, not thinking that he would be discovered, before he replied that he was going to soon be baptized as a Jehovah's Witness. Then he went on to say that Jesus was actually an incarnation not of God, but of the Archangel Michael, whom they consider to be God's "first created". Considering this very strange, I decided to read up on them. I wanted an Orthodox Christian perspective, but what I found was this very good book put out by Catholic Answers on the Jehovah's Witness that was quite informative. Unfortunately, I can't find the book in my personal library, but on the Catholic Answers website they do have a good, brief article explaining the Jehovah's Witness, their history, their doctrine, their expectations concerning proselytizing, and their eschatology (their belief on the end times - they embrace millennialism, and they have predicted that the world would come to an end on numerous occasions and ... well, we're still around!). Another good read comes from the OODE web site (Orthodox Outlet for Dogmatic Enquiries - sorry to disappoint the Dr. Who fans out there). From the list of articles on the OODE web site, a good read is the very first article called In Search of the Truth - which is a true account of two people living in Greece, one a convert and one who was born into the organization - Very informative. When dealing with these people, it is important to realize that they are trained very well to proselytize. They are very used to putting forth a good offensive and they will use your ignorance - of your own faith as well as theirs- to accomplish their goal of either putting you to shame through provocation, or ultimately convincing you that they are in the right. DO NOT GET INTO CONVERSATIONS WITH THEM UNLESS YOU KNOW YOUR OWN FAITH WELL, THAT OF THE WATCHTOWER CULT, AND THEIR METHODS FOR PROSELYTIZING. Politely (if you can!) excuse yourself from any religious conversation with them. If they persist, then be stern! And be mindful that For all the use they give to scripture to convince you, realize that it is what the Watchtower publishes in their magazine, not the Bible, which is their de facto final authority. If you've ever read George Orwell's 1984, you will find that the Watchtower is very good at employing Doublethink, changing their beliefs and expecting their followers to believe that this is what the Watchtower has always preached. They tend to be very cultish, and defecting from the group presents quite a hardship on the person wishing to defect, since EVERY MEMBER (family, employers, etc..) cannot even greet the defector. Here are the links:
< http://www.catholic.com > (They have several articles -- in the "search" box, simply type in "Jehovah's Witness"), and
< http://www.oodegr.com/english/watchtower/watchtower.htm#ARTICLES >. Hope this helps.
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Clancy Boy
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« Reply #49 on: December 27, 2010, 01:20:59 AM »

Seriously, if y'all weren't so low-profile you could have spared me about a decade's worth of work Roll Eyes
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« Reply #50 on: December 27, 2010, 01:31:04 AM »

Know your Bible and know your history. It's really best to have a good understanding of Church history when you're dealing with JW's. They see themselves as a "restoration church" of the Apostles-- so asking them questions about why they don't use the Septuagint, how their church could be "invisible" for 19 centuries, etc. are really good questions to ask them. They're good at twisting scripture to fit their views, just remember you have the Tradition of the Apostles though. Smiley

It's a message specifically tailored to a Protestant audience.  Apostolic authority and revelation are two things no Protestant church has, so it's kind of an appealing presentation if you're a Lutheran or an Anglican, or some other religion founded by some guy.

And of course no Protestant would consider becoming a Catholic, whose crimes have been extensively cataloged and which many Protestants still believe is controlled by Satan.  So if a church with an Apostolic foundation is what you're after, JW (and Mormonism) are your only options.

None of these people have ever heard of the Orthodox church.  It's far far away, very foreign looking and probably some kind of Islam or something.  Orthodoxy is exactly what most Protestants are all looking for but shhh the true gospel of Jesus Christ is a secret and not to be talked about with outsiders!  I think Jesus gave specific instructions before he left that it not be shared.
----
I wonder if you noticed that the person posting this query was herself a Roman Catholic... Although the author of this blog and the moderator of this forum is Orthodox, there are people of other faith traditions out there who are registered on this forum.  Many of them are perhaps enquirers. There is a saying out there: Better to attract flies by honey than by vinegar. Perhaps it would do you well to learn it. Oh, and yea... there are PLENTY of Protestants - even Evangelical Protestants - who are converting to the Catholic Church as well as Orthodoxy. There seems to be a movement among Protestants yearning for a more authentic, worship centered Christianity rooted in history and extending to the Apostles. And considering how alive and well the JW are operating in Greece and other Orthodox countries, I promise you, they know who the Orthodox are! They get all sorts of news from the Watchtower magazine regarding their missionary activities around the world.
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Clancy Boy
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« Reply #51 on: December 27, 2010, 01:49:54 AM »

There is a saying out there: Better to attract flies by honey than by vinegar. Perhaps it would do you well to learn it.

What?  Out where?
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« Reply #52 on: December 27, 2010, 09:41:47 AM »


I was given a small booklet that I've skimmed and it appears that they recognize Jesus as the 'First Creation'... even existing before the creation of the world. I don't know if my co-worker believes that as he seems a bit more 'islamic' in his views of Jesus as being simply a man/prophet. I just thought if he understood the Logos as the animating principle pervading the Universe that he might be a little more generous with interpreting it as a person within the actual Godhead and not simply 'a god'... I'm not sure what that actually means. So do they teach that there are other God's besides God?

JWs do not consider Jesus a mere prophet and messenger. Unlike Islam, they designate Him as the Son of God (although their interpretation of this phrase is different from ours, being based on the notion of adoption). They teach that Logos is the FIRST creature created DIRECTLY by God and that it was used as an agent by God in the creation of everything else. I read somewhere that they considered Jesus an angelic being (archangel Michael).

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« Reply #53 on: December 27, 2010, 12:08:01 PM »


I was given a small booklet that I've skimmed and it appears that they recognize Jesus as the 'First Creation'... even existing before the creation of the world. I don't know if my co-worker believes that as he seems a bit more 'islamic' in his views of Jesus as being simply a man/prophet. I just thought if he understood the Logos as the animating principle pervading the Universe that he might be a little more generous with interpreting it as a person within the actual Godhead and not simply 'a god'... I'm not sure what that actually means. So do they teach that there are other God's besides God?

JWs do not consider Jesus a mere prophet and messenger. Unlike Islam, they designate Him as the Son of God (although their interpretation of this phrase is different from ours, being based on the notion of adoption). They teach that Logos is the FIRST creature created DIRECTLY by God and that it was used as an agent by God in the creation of everything else. I read somewhere that they considered Jesus an angelic being (archangel Michael).



Yes, very true.

http://tasbeha.org/content/hh_books/jehovwit/index.html

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« Reply #54 on: December 29, 2010, 06:53:29 PM »

Well, we had discussions after work for a couple of days and we seem to be at a standstill. Neither one of us look like we'll yield on our position. I brought my Ignatius Catholic Study Bible - New Testament Edition RSV-CE2 to point out some thing but we haven't really gone there yet. He's pretty convinced that the early Christian Church apostatized itself at some point and really doesn't want to hear anything about the early Church Fathers or the Councils.
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« Reply #55 on: December 29, 2010, 07:21:15 PM »

Well, we had discussions after work for a couple of days and we seem to be at a standstill. Neither one of us look like we'll yield on our position. I brought my Ignatius Catholic Study Bible - New Testament Edition RSV-CE2 to point out some thing but we haven't really gone there yet. He's pretty convinced that the early Christian Church apostatized itself at some point and really doesn't want to hear anything about the early Church Fathers or the Councils.
And this precisely the point about the JWs. Before 1870 there is no point in history that there is anything similar to them. It's not even correct to call them Arians. Their beliefs owe nothing at all to traditional Christianity although a recent Watchtower article seemed to approve of traditional Quakerism. I don't think they looked too closely at Quaker beliefs! I get the feeling they want some historical verification for their beliefs. You can't debate these matters since most people walk away from debate and the 'foot soldier' JWs seem to assume a degree of ignorance about the bible etc on the part of those they're preaching to that is quite insulting.
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« Reply #56 on: January 17, 2011, 07:49:31 PM »

I have a neighbor who is waiting to catch me outside to talk to me about Jesus not being an equal part of the trinity.  Or perhaps not being God at all, I am not sure.  They were quoting Philippians Chapter 2 about Jesus not being equal (in there version of the bible).
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« Reply #57 on: January 17, 2011, 08:01:44 PM »

One thing that really freaks out the JWs is the Cross. Coincidence?  Wink
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« Reply #58 on: January 17, 2011, 08:06:29 PM »

One thing that really freaks out the JWs is the Cross. Coincidence?  Wink


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