• Crisis of Conscience, by Ray Franz
  • In Search of Christian Freedom, by Ray Franz
  • Captives of a Concept, by Don Cameron
  • The Gentile Times Reconsidered, Carl Olaf Jonnson

These are critical books in understanding what’s going on with the Organization and the Governing Body, and how it relates to us as Jehovah’s Witnesses.  For me, it was at times very hard to read some of it.  As for the validity of Crisis of Conscience, I can vouch for the accuracy of Brother Franz’s book.  I was there at Brooklyn Bethel only a few years after all the weirdness had happened. I heard firsthand several things mentioned specifically in the book, and knew personally or by reputation dozens of the people referred to in its pages. Captives of a Concept is filled with logic and unbiased reasoning on our teachings and beliefs in the light of theocratic history and the scriptures. It is filled with hundreds of references, and I have personally looked up every one of them. The author, Brother Don Cameron, (a longtime former elder) does get a little sarcastic and angry at times, which is the only small criticism I have of his book. The Gentile Times Reconsidered is scholarly to the “nth” degree and I admit I have not read every word. However the first 30 or so pages are introductory and  tell the story of how Brother Jonnson (an active elder and regular pioneer at the time) was  smeared publicly by high-ranking brothers in the branch and within the circuit and then finally wrongly removed from the congregation. His crime? Studying and researching the chronology of when Jerusalem fell in the pre-Christian era. A bible study asked him to verify the 607 date since all secular sources attest to 586/587. After spending several years in deep study he was forced to admit that the date cannot be accurate, and so wrote the Society with his findings. What he writes is corroborated from other sources and I have downloaded and read the actual letters he wrote to the world headquarters and their responses as well. The brothers in writing and on the governing body are aware that the 607 B.C.E. date is wrong- they just don’t know what to do about it because our entire chronology falls apart without this pivotal date.

If you haven’t read these books, especially the first one, it may benefit you immensely. (1 Corinthians 2:15)  If you are feeling uncomfortable about reading “apostate” material, please consider my post on what “apostate literature” is and what it isn’t. Ray Franz was in no way shape or form an apostate. He was a sincere lover of Jehovah, Christ, and truth, and an anointed Witness  and partaker of the emblems  for some 40 years. After passing away in 2010, did he go to heaven? Know one knows but God and Christ, but I feel that he did.

Anyway, if you are looking for one of these publications, google them and you will find where they can be found. If you still can’t locate one of them, email me.

Rating 4.71 out of 5

14 Comments on A Few Books that Cause the Struggle

  1. Tim says:

    Hi thanks for this web site! I to have struggled for years. 6-7 years ago I started reading The studies in the scriptures. For me this has opened my eyes to some of our teaching I have problems with.


  2. The Lingdow says:

    I am one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and I have read all the books that you list. I find none of them to be “apostate”. For none of them try to get the reader to “stand away from” God. In fact only the second book in the list even suggests one leaving the organization associated with Jehovah’s Witnesses. That, I believe is the writers expressed belief. The reader is as with any book left to make his own conclusions. And I hope one would not make such a life altering decision on the basis of one book.(Unless that one book is the Bible) If one does then that decision is on them alone. And it does not also mean one is not free to change their mind.

    Maybe I am mistaken but I do not recall God’s Word telling us to not talk or debate even true apostates. The scriptures that do come to mind are in Matthew 4:1-11 where our Exemplar Jesus debates with the original apostate Satan. Jesus did not tell him to go away. I cannot talk to you, you are an apostate. No on the contrary, Jesus debated Satan on the Bible and was victorious because he was on the side of Truth. If the Truth is on our side or rather if we are on the Truths side and have nothing to hide or cover up, we have nothing to fear from anyone even the original Apostate Satan the Devil.
    But on the other hand if we are not Truth lovers and instead “get to believing the lie”(2 Thess.2:11) and have many things we need to keep secret, then we would fear that lie getting exposed and just stick our head in the sand and think everyone’s out to get us and that Satan is behind any information that does not directly come from the Governing Bodies Writing committee and that information is in some magical way going to convince us to leave Jehovah.


  3. Jayme says:

    I can think of a few books that caused the struggle for me:

    1. Revelation, Its Grand Climax At Hand!

    2. Pay Attention to Daniels Prophecy!

    Considering many of the things contained in these books at the congregation book study really had me going back to scripture and praying for Jehovahs help with what was obviously flawed teaching. As to be expected He opened up his hand and satisfied. Psalms 104:27,28

    Keep up the good work bro.!


  4. There is another book called “In Search Of Christian Freedom” by Raymond Franz.


  5. Don Cameron says:

    The basic approach “Captives of a Concept” takes is to compare two things:

    (1) The Society’s interpretation of Matthew 24:45-47 as explained in their book “God’s Kingdom of a Thousand Years Has Approached” with…

    (2) The Society’s history that relates to their interpretation as explained in their book “JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES – Proclaimers of God’s Kingdom.”

    “Captives of a Concept” doesn’t try to show that their interpretation of Matthew 24:45-47 does not agree with the Bible. But rather that it doesn’t agree with their own history that relates to their interpretation.

    The reason why this comparison is so necessary is because in order for the Society to be “Jehovah’s faithful and discreet slave organization” (or “God’s organization”) today, their interpretation of Matthew 24:45-47 MUST have actually happened in the organization’s history.

    The reason why there are millions of Jehovah’s Witnesses today is not because they all DID make the above comparison before they got baptized but rather because they all did NOT make it. The book refers to this mistake as “The One Mistake All Jehovah’s Witnesses Have Made.”

    “Captives of a Concept” does not make this mistake. And it makes it difficult to understand how anyone could make the above comparison and then conclude that the Society has ever been God’s organization.

    Once Raymond Franz finally made such a comparison in 1979 he concluded, “It would be an insult to Christ Jesus to say that he selected the Society on the basis of what it had been teaching as of 1919.”

    One would need to make such a comparison to appreciate why he made such a statement.

    Don Cameron


    • Don Cameron says:

      When “Captives of a Concept” was written the Governing Body was teaching that Jesus appointed the Society “over all his belongings” in the spring of 1919. That claimed appointment was the most important Event in the organization’s history because that’s when they say Jesus identified the Society as his “faithful and discreet slave.”

      But on October 6, 2012 the Governing Body chained their mind and said that instead Jesus appointed the Society’s leadership “over his domestics” in 1919. This change now makes this ‘domestics appointment’ the most important Event in Watchtower history for the above reason.

      But whatever appointment they want to claim to have received in 1919, they would have had to first been found providing “the right spiritual food at the proper” down till 1919. See Matthew 24:45

      But as Chapter 3 of “Captives of a Concept” easily shows, there is no possible way the Society could have received either appointment because the spiritual food they had been serving down till 1919 was so bad that former Governing Body Member Raymond Franz expressed it this way:

      “It would be an insult to Christ Jesus to say that he selected this organization on the basis of what it had been teaching as of 1919.”

      Therefore the Governing Body’s “new light” doesn’t help prove that the Society is “God’s faithful and discreet slave organization” any better than their “old light” did.


    • frank says:

      Hi Don. I would like to get your book on audio if it was available. Tell me, Don, as you are a person who understands the details of the history of “God’s Organisation,” can you tell me what miracle happened to show that God’s approval had moved from Christendom to his ‘new arrangement.” After all, at Pentecost, there were ‘tongues of fire.’ As I understand it, all the ‘elect’ had was a ‘realisation’ that they had been chosen in 1919. To be consistent, surely there had to be more than self-selection to the highest position of authority on Earth religiously. Ta.


  6. JJ says:

    Thank you for the summary Brother Cameron. Your book has had a huge impact on many of us.


  7. Andrew says:

    I purchased a few days ago “In search of Christian Freedom” and am rapidly consuming it. The logic used, the comparisons made, and the scriptures reasoned on is simply crushing to the Watchtower doctrine.

    Any JW who reads this at the very least has to be quite shaken in his belief.


  8. Dennis says:

    Don, I agree with JJ. I found your book very interesting.


  9. greybeard says:

    Wow Don Cameron. What a small world! Love your book! Thank you!!! Could I ask you who you meet with today? What Church? Who are your brothers that you gather with?


  10. Don Cameron says:


    I went through that “cognitive dissonance” from 1976 until I read “Crisis of Conscience” in 1984. There was no Internet at that time and so it was not easy to get answers to my concerns about how or why the Governing Body mishandled the issue about 1975 the way they did. I was so discouraged that I tried to resign as an elder in 1978. But the other elders rejected my request and instead deleted me on the grounds of “Disloyalty to the Society.”

    Since at the time I still believed that the Society was “Jehovah’s organization” I felt I had charged with being disloyal to Jehovah. And that was scary.

    But after reading page 296 [page 345 fourth edition] of Ray’s book I finally realized that I had only been disloyal to the men of the Governing Body when Ray explained that when it comes to such things as “loyalty to the organization” that “THEY AND THEY ALONE ARE ‘THE ORGANIZATION.’”

    This is why I say in “Captives of a Concept” that the various terms that are used “God’s organization” in actual practice refer just to the men of the Governing body who are hidden behind those terms. And that prior to 1976 those terms refer to the one man who was the president at the time (especially since Rutherford).

    Your situation with your wife reminded me of what I went through with my wife when I tried to encourage her to read “Crisis of Conscience” back in 1984. She began to consider that this might be the end of our marriage.

    As it turned out her mother had been having serious concerns about what she saw going and so was willing to read the book. She then encouraged my wife to read it.

    My wife asked, “How can I know if Ray Franz is telling the truth?” All I could say was that I found no reason not to believe anything he had so say. And so I left her alone until she finished the book. I then asked, “What do you think? Is he telling the truth?”

    She said, “Well… a 99% chance he is telling the truth.” I couldn’t let that 1% go without asking her about it. She said, “He was too nice about it. I wish he would have punched someone in the nose!” I took that to mean that she was really 100% sure he was telling the truth.

    I was disfellowshipped for recommending Ray’s book to someone. My wife was later disfellowshipped without ever being ‘invited’ to a Committee Meeting.

    If your wife ever gets ready to want to face the truth about the Society she may feel the same way after reading the book.

    As far as “what to do” is concerned I would recommend “In Search of Christian Freedom.” Ray has some interesting things to say about what Christianity does and does not involve. See especially his last three chapters:

    “The Challenge of Christian Freedom”
    “A Congregation of Free People “

    I would also recommend these chapters to “Graybeard” and anyone else who wants to consider an alternative to the Watchtower’s “God’s organization” concept way of worship.

    And Chapter 21 of “Captives of a Concept” offers some suggestions that may begin to help your wife TEACH HERSELF the truth about the Society. You might want to always try to keep the following paraphrased version of 2 Timothy 2:23-26 in mind…

    ‘A slave of the Lord does not need to fight your wife, but needs to be gentle towards her, instructing her with mildness as perhaps God may give her repentance leading to an accurate knowledge of the truth about the Watchtower Society and she may come back to her proper senses.’ – See page 121.



  11. JJ says:

    Thanks for your insight brother. I will pray on this, leave it in Jehovah’s hands…And do my best to implement your good advice.


  12. DannyH says:

    This info is so important get it out to any and all that you can we need to expose the lies


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