Are Jehovah’s Witnesses in Bondage to the Watchtower Society?

We have begun to post a number of e-letters Make Sure Ministries has received from David Henke, founder of Watchman Fellowship, Inc., an apologetics ministry, on a variety of subjects. They will post on Tuesdays into the foreseeable future. As always, we appreciate your comments. Please consider clicking on the link following this blog to learn more about Watchman Fellowship and what they have to offer. E-letters have been slightly edited for clarity.


January 8, 2021 E-Letter

Scripture tells us not to be in bondage to men (2 Peter 2:15-19, Galatians 5:1).  Biblical Christianity is open to discussion and even disagreement about a wide variety of topics. The essentials of the faith that cannot be compromised include the Person and Work of Christ. Who He is and what He did for us on Calvary.

During the Reformation Martin Luther chose not to institute a Protestant papacy. Instead he left the unity of the faith to the individual and the Holy Spirit. This is how we arrived at many denominations. The alternative is a cult-like organization that must control the message to prevent disagreement.

Can Jehovah’s Witnesses publicly disagree with the Watchtower Society?  If they are free from the coercion and control of men they can.  However, they are not free.  To publicly disagree is to invite a meeting of the Judicial Committee, which will accept only repentance or disfellowshipping even on very minor issues.

The basis for such stark alternatives is that the Watchtower Society claims to be directed by Jehovah and Jesus in its teaching and practice.  They are the “channel,” also known as “the Faithful and Discreet Slave,” through which Jehovah communicates His will to Jehovah’s Witnesses.  This communication is called “meat in due season” (Matthew 24:45).

If the Watchtower is simply passing along what it received from Jehovah then disagreement would be with Jehovah.  A cult cannot allow this, as it would lead to disintegration.  It would certainly lead to loss of the “Slave” (Master’s) control of the organization. 

In the Watchtower magazine of February 1, 1952 (pages 79, 80), the self-proclaimed “Faithful and Discreet Slave” told Jehovah’s Witnesses, “Are we assigned as individuals to bring forth the food for the spiritual table?  No?  Then let us not try to take over the slave’s duties.  We should eat and digest and assimilate what is set before us, without shying away from parts of the food because it may not suit the fancy of our mental taste….  Jehovah and Christ direct and correct the slave as needed, not we as individuals….  We should meekly go along with the Lord’s theocratic organization and wait for further clarification, rather than balk at the first mention of a thought unpalatable to us and proceed to quibble and mouth our criticisms and opinions as though they were worth more than the slave’s provision of spiritual food.”

This statement demonstrates the premise of all high control religious groups. Totalistic cults want recruits to accept that the leaders, and only the leaders, speak for God.

When confronted with examples of failed prophecies the typical Jehovah’s Witness will claim that the organization is not an inspired prophet, they make mistakes.  However, since they are not free to disagree, as the above quote demonstrates, the Witness should be challenged to explain why the Watchtower is trying to have it both ways?  For one circumstance the organization says it speaks unquestionably for Jehovah but for another they claim human fallibility.

Since it is the eternal destiny of the Jehovah’s Witness that is at stake, he should be challenged to exercise his God-given responsibility to try “them which say they are apostles, and are not” (2 Corinthians 11:13-15 and Revelation 2:2).

Copyright© 2019 Watchman Fellowship, All rights reserved. Used by permission of David Henke.

Website: www.watchman-ga.org

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