The Jehovah’s Witnesses refer to their religion as “the truth.” But what exactly do they see as the truth about the universe and its history? We’re going to answer that question right here and now in this single article! Brace yourselves: we are going to give you their whole truth story in a nutshell (which, when all is said and done, you may find very apropos.)
About 6,000 years ago the god Jehovah decided to create Adam. As an afterthought he also “built” Eve. But, before knowing right from wrong, these two foolish people disobeyed Jehovah (after Eve had listened to a talking serpent.) So Jehovah put the wicked fallen angel Satan in charge of them and all of the Earth and stepped out of the spotlight for about 4,000 years — except to drown nearly everyone and everything on one occasion; stage a bloody puppet-show with Pharaoh and Moses; help out with some Israeli wars; and order himself up a whole lot of burnt animals to savor the smell of.
Then this god decided to forgive humankind for Adam and Eve’s disobedience by impregnating a virgin girl and having their son born on Earth as a human whom he arranged to kill as a sacrifice to himself.
People proceeded to write contradictory books about all of this, and hundreds of years later the apostate Catholic Church voted which of these books were “inspired by God.” But, just like the “whore of Babylon” that they are, they got some of them wrong. Over a millennium later the apostate Protestants corrected the Catholic mistakes by throwing out several books, leaving what was left to form what we now know as “the [Protestant] Bible.” (Luther wanted to throw out the book of Revelation as well, but unfortunately was out-voted.)
Things went from bad to worse for hundreds of more years until Charles Taze Russell got so scared of hell that he wrote The Studies in the Scriptures and founded the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society to publish them. These books were meant not only to debunk the mainstream notion of roasting souls, but also set out to prove that the Adventists were right about 1874 being the second-coming of the god Jehovah’s son (albeit invisibly). This was to be followed by a 40-year “harvest of the saints,” which included the restoration of all Jews to Palestine, the disappearance of the Saints from off the Earth by 1910, and Armageddon. The end of the 40-year harvest brought them up to 1914 which would see the end of Armageddon, the start of the resurrection of the dead, and the restoration of paradise on Earth. This chronology was “undeniably true” since it was all backed by erroneous measurements of the Great Pyramid of Egypt (hailed as “the Bible in stone.”)
When 1914 came and went with the “Saints” still earthbound, the Jews still scattered, and no formerly-dead folks running around, Russell was somewhat confounded. But the next president of the Watchtower: the usurper Rutherford, solved the problem by declaring the pyramid to be “Satan’s Bible.” Eventually he simply dropped the 1874 date and moved the son of Jehovah’s invisible presence up to 1914: the year when Jesus was crowned king of heaven and Earth, and Satan was simultaneously kicked out of heaven and fell to Earth (where he became even more active in world affairs and shifting tectonic plates.)
The 40-year “harvest period” was dropped in favor of the new “understanding” that the generation that had lived through and understood the significance of the year 1914 [which, in reality would exclude all of the “Bible Students”, since they understood it to be the end of the last days: not their start] would live to see Armageddon (in which all non Jehovah’s Witnesses — instead of living into the millennium to there be taught the truth and judged [as per Russell’s understanding] — would now die horrible deaths for not subscribing to the Watchtower and playing Rutherford’s phonograph recordings.) Then an Earthly paradise would be restored for a “great crowd” of Jehovah’s Witnesses (leaving room for only a total of 144,000 Witnesses to go to heaven.)
A few years later the son of the god Jehovah took a look at all of the world’s religions (I guess he wasn’t paying attention when they had first formed) and judged Rutherford’s Bible Students (later “Jehovah’s Witnesses”) to be the best, while all the rest were judged to be of Satan. So he arranged for Rutherford’s release from prison in 1919 — just as foretold in the Bible book of Revelation [though they couldn’t get the dates to correspond, fudge them though they did]!
This group, now on a roll, went on to fulfill more prophecies from the book of Revelation, such as when they held a convention in Cedar Point Ohio, releasing books written by Rutherford which no one today believes in or reads. (In case you were wondering, this fulfilled the pouring out of the seven great plagues prophesied in Revelation.)
After killing off some of its members by banning vaccinations, organ-transplants, and blood fractions, Jehovah’s organization on Earth had an “OOPS!” moment when they realized that these things were not against their god’s law. So they lifted these bans and just killed their members by keeping a ban on whole blood and its “primary components” (even though these are also not against their god’s law.)
When the 1914 generation had died out, a new understanding of “generation” was revealed: it meant “overlapping generations“!
Then Jehovah’s Earthly organization suffered much persecution (thus proving that they are “Christ’s brothers”) by being fined millions of dollars for failing to protect children from the child molesters in their midst.
Finally, when more than 144,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses had declared themselves to be of that number, most of them were lovingly declared by god’s organization on Earth to be as “mentally diseased” as the Watchtower’s critics.
Of course, this brief synopsis of what the Jehovah’s Witnesses believe to have taken place over the last 6,000 years can hardly do it justice. After all, how could we overlook such milestones as the all-important revelation of the identity of the “faithful and discreet slave” to whom we all must “listen and obey”? This “slave,” of course, was identified as: Charles Taze Russell — oops: old light — we mean the 144,000 — oops: old light — we mean the Governing Body, but only when they’re pontificating on important truths [such as the fact that Smurf dolls are commonly demonized] in which case we must believe whatever they say without question even if what they say seems wrong to us, and even though they don’t claim to be infallible [as if such a disclaimer were needed!] and even though they claim they’re not a mind-controlling cult!
Unfortunately a synopsis by its very nature must leave out many enthralling details such as these. Not to mention: the 1925 resurrection of the Ancient Worthies and the mansion built for them after they failed to show; radio waves as the ultimate panacea; and the mortal danger of aluminum cookware.
So, there you have it: The entire insight into Jehovah’s Witness beliefs in a nutshell! We may have just saved some of you from a six month Watchtower “Bible study”!
In part two we will begin to suggest some ways of reasoning with people who actually believe this story to be true. When I believed the story, my mother had ministers visit us in the hope of talking sense to me. But all they did was try to prove hell-fire and the trinity. It had no appreciable effect on me other than to send me off to re-read Watchtower articles on those subjects. So, I don’t think that arguing scriptural interpretations is productive. The Bible is open to many possible interpretations which have been wrangled over for centuries. It’s not likely that any of us are going to resolve those disputes.
Instead, we’re going to look at the foundation that their story rests upon:
- The existence of the god Jehovah
- Whether Jesus Christ ever existed
- If the Bible can possibly be the “word of god.”
We’ll start with the big guy himself: Jehovah! So please click on: Part Two: Does Jehovah Exist?