For those of you that attend meetings at the Kingdom Hall, how much do you get out of it? The repetition and the incessant pounding on the FDS “drum” can be discouraging sometimes, yet I have found that when I focus on the Bible and sometimes even pray for resolve and endurance I end up finding sustenance and some strength to endure. It reminds me of a seminar I attended through work once- The leader was a corporate-team-building kind of speaker and he said something very interesting:

“We supply the content. YOU supply the context.”

So we all listen to the same material. What we hear and how we relate it to our own lives is entirely up to us. Job 12:11  reads: “Does not the ear itself test out words as the palate tastes food?” So we don’t always agree with certain things- just like when you line up ten people to ask their opinion about a particular subject, person, etc. So that got me wondering about how much is enough for us to be encouraged/edified/enlightened by the content? Hearing a public talk and looking up scriptures about parenting is very relevant if you have young children in your family. That COULD be “food at the proper time” for you- depending upon your own frame of mind and the context you supply to it. Notice this quote:

*** w02 9/15 pp. 13-14 par. 14 “Pay More Than the Usual Attention” ***
Though the teaching ability of participants is important, it is not the sole factor contributing to a meeting’s success. Do you not agree that our prime concern should be, not how well the speaker delivers his talk, but how well we incline our ear? When we attend meetings and pay attention to what is being presented, we are worshiping God in harmony with his will. That is what makes the meeting a success. If we are eager to take in the knowledge of God, we will benefit from meetings, regardless of a speaker’s abilities. (Proverbs 2:1-5)

Then there are certain Watchtower studies that just dwell on the FDS and other things that are erroneous and a tightening of the GB power grip. That’s the other side of the coin, at least for me. I read other scriptures or pray during some of these moments. Or jot down ideas for the blog. That’s what I do. Keeping peace with my family and playing the game is necessary for me right now, but it may not be for some others of you out there.

So where is the breaking point? At what point would an enlightened Christian Witness just say, “I can’t do this anymore”? At 90%? 70%? 25%? They do supply the content, but we have to remember that we are in control of the context. But some experience panic attacks, nervousness and other very real and palpable symptoms just thinking about going back to the Kingdom Hall. Those brothers and sisters just may not be able to do it, and I don’t think Jehovah holds this against them. Some have been deeply hurt by the Elders or gossip or whatever. This is a legitimate problem, and they may choose to listen in on the phone line or not at all. But unfortunately many of “the friends” just don’t get it. “If you are discouraged then you need MORE meetings not less”, they say. But that’s like saying if you drank a little bleach and it made you sick you need to drink more of it to build up your resistance! Empathy is a tough thing, and some people can’t even define it or fathom it when it comes to certain things this like this. But if you are out of the organization or a Bible Student or in your heart are of another religion already, this may be an “no-brainer” to you anyway, and that’s cool. I know that some have commented that they don’t agree with everything that is said/believed by the Bible Students about 1874, etc. either.

And in that way this applies to almost any source that we go to for encouragement and spirituality. Whether it’s JWStruggle or the many other wonderful sites that build faith in the scriptures and allow us to express our viewpoints, we have to decide for ourselves. And hopefully that’s never going to change.

Rating 4.00 out of 5

Tags: , , , , , ,

11 Comments on True “Spiritual Food” at Meetings- Is 90% enough? Is 70%?

  1. andrew says:

    What is discouraging at the meetings is how everything is so scripted. On sundays the brother gives a talk directly from an outline supplied by the society, reads the scriptures he is supposed to and makes the same application as has been made hundreds of times.

    The Watchtower is read the info. from the society, read only the texts cited by the society, and answer only whats in the paragraph. Most brothers in our hall don’t even bother to put it in their own words they just read it.

    The same is true of the midweek meeting everything is so scripted. The most interesting part all week is the Bible Highlights because it isn’t as scripted, but even there we are to use only points we find in the society’s publications.


  2. greybeard says:

    Good post JJ,

    I was a happier man when I was going to the meetings and going out in service. I loved the fact that I knew the truth. I couldn’t wait for the next assembly to see what new books would come out. It was kinda like living in a fantasy world. My own little spiritual paradise. Hey… I didn’t have to think for myself, all doctrine had been hammered out. Then I was DF’ed and took a look at the internet. Found out that what i believed was not 100% true like I thought it was. How much truth does it have? How much True “Spiritual Food”? How can that be measured? I don’t know? All i know is that it doesn’t take much poison in your food to kill you. What percent of poison do we need to die? Probably only 1% depending on what that poison is. I am one of those persons that get panic attacks when I go to the KH so I try my hardest not to go. i love the friends but the FADS and GB banging on the drums kills me. So what is enough “true Spiritual food”. Is there really any if it is tainted with one drop of poison? I don’t think so. That’s MHO.

    Love always,


  3. andrew says:

    Nowhere a thinking, studious christian might go will he agree 100% with what is being said. And that really is not that important. The problem with the meetings is that no other viewpoint is tolerated. You agree 100% or you are not a christian.

    That being said, the association before and after the meetings can be very encouraging. There are still many sincere christians at the meetings, and hearing their expressions of faith can help us to continue on our own path of faith.


  4. Jayme says:

    Great points Andrew! I agree that one of the main problems is that no other viewpoint is tolerated. This is one thing Bro. Russel understood. Unfortunatly Rutherford had the opposite view and we today are still bound by his oppression.

    WT, Sep. 1893, p. 1572
    “The endeavor to compel all men to think alike on all subjects, culminated in the great apostasy and the development of the great papal system, and thereby the gospel, the one faith that Paul and the other apostles set forth, was lost – buried under the mass of uninspired decrees of popes and councils. The unity of the early church, based upon the simple gospel and bound only by love, gave place to the bondage of the church of Rome…Each new reform movement (like Protestantism) has made the failure of attempting to make a creed just large enough for its prime movers.”


    • Amos says:

      Greetings JJ & All,
      I’ve been thinking about this topic since it was posted, & would like to make a small comment.

      While none of us will ever know ALL the truth before our Lord’s return, what we do want, is that the amount of bible knowledge that we have is the truth, regardless of how much that is.

      False knowledge is a hindrance & valueless, & this is why I have gone back to the bible, to find the simple teachings from the Apostolic times, & while Jesus walked the earth.

      The first century congregations had it right, but what they believed has been adulterated by almost twenty centuries of Satan’s influence, including his trying to water down the Holy Scriptures as they were originally written. This is being done particularly in the name of modernising translations, by bringing them into current languages, & using some suspect master texts, such as Westcott & Hort. These two people were self confessed occultists, & some of the founding members of what is now called the “New Age Movement.” How could you ever trust such an important work of translating the Bible to anybody who were involved in the occult.
      Just thought I’d add this last bit as an example of how easy it is for Satan to corrupt what we take as being kosher. Vigilence is essential.

      Your fellow Bro. in Christ,


  5. Dennis says:

    Hi Brother Amos, Given your feelings on Westcott & Hort I am wondering which bible translation/s you use for 1. Study, 2. Devotional reading?



  6. Amos says:

    Hi Brother Dennis, This is interesting, as it was quite a shock to me when I discovered the practices of W & H. I will also be looking into Nestle & Alland along similar lines, as I’ve been told they were also into the occult.

    As the bible is the basis for ALL the genuine Christians beliefs, we need to err on the side of caution, as it is surprising how easy it is to get the wrong meaning & understanding by using an inferior translation.

    A simple illustration, please check Luke 2:22,23, & see the word that is used to refer to our Lord & saviour. This was quite disturbing for me when I came across it, & had to check it in several of my NWT bibles, to make sure it was not a typo.

    To answer your questions, I still use the NWT occasionally, but always check critical verses against other translations.

    #1, Study; KJV, RSV, ESV, Rotherhams (unfortunately my Roth. NT is W&H based). Sometimes I also check some verses against the Geneva Bible, as this is the earliest translation into English from the original tongues.
    I also have an NIV reverse interlinear by Mounce, with the GK numbers, (similar to Strongs) & do the same as with the KJV. I am a serious bible student.
    GK is Goodrick & Kollenberger, these were the translators of the NIV, & have also produced a concordance similar to Strongs, & have a cross reference to Strongs numbers for double checking. Mounce also has his own concordance, which is excellent. He is one of the foremost Greek scholars of our day.

    #2, Devotional reading; NKJV, NIV (with care).

    When getting into serious study on critical or debatable interpretive topics, I always use the JP Greens complete KJV with Strong’s numbers, & check the original language words into English to get as close as possible to the true meaning of each verse under discussion.

    I have over 30 different translations, & occasionally I use some of these in comparison….with care.

    All things being equal, the old KJV is probably about the closest we have with reasonable accuracy, along with the Geneva.

    Don’t be deceived by the many claims made against the KJV by critics, as these always have an of their own axe to grind. I have checked it out, & the KJV has far less than a hundred errors that alter the sense/meaning of the original tongue. This information is readilly available for any one who wishes to find it.

    In Christian love to all,



  7. bruceguth says:

    Brothers, look this work over. http://www.nazarene-friends.or.....efault.htm


  8. bruceguth says:

    As I had to leave a life behind, and move on, I felt like a fish out of water, in a sense. It took a lot of courage. Since it was time for change concerning family and friends both, this is what I experienced. It relates to the sense of spiritual food.

    For many years, I know that it was as though much water had dried up in the river. What was once appreciated as clean and pure was going sour, and I was beginning to understand that if I would get my head out of the water, and sit on the bank, the water wouldn’t smell so good

    I knew for certain that Jehovah had directed my step into the organization; and that He had confidense enough in me to reveal that I needed to go forward, even with the risky feeling I naturally had over it.

    Yet one more major challenge in life. The details over the family I will leave out here, as I choose to keep that confidential now.

    But as I moved off, I gradually came to see some of the things that you people are already understanding, though some are still in congregations. It’s good if you can do that, in obvious ways. Just keep conscience compromises away from you, as we know the sad state for hypocrites.

    The point I was getting at on “spiritual food” is that I have seen for many years now that clearly half of what is taught through the organization / ‘The Org’, is pure gold! It is very good, and often advanced from what can be found elsewhere. The other half on the other hand is not gold, but it is brown. And it has a smell to it that is stinky.

    It’s just an objective observation.

    There are many people I have come to know throughout my adult life who I consider friends for life. They can in no way be counted on one or two hands, and I would have to remove my shoes to keep counting, I am sure. Oddly though, they are not so many who have been elders, though some. They consist more of the ones I would encourage and help with their struggles; and some who would do likewise for me. None of the “power figures” at all.

    Though I am “officially” dis’d, I am certain that some of these would die for me right now today! And they know I most certainly would for them. This is how we are identified brothers. With the same Godly Love that dwells in our Lord.

    It was nice anyway, to stand away and clear my head, and tap the water out of my ears (the JW-speak), and get busy with more of the truth.

    “Work, not for the food that perishes, but for the food that remains for life everlasting, which the Son of man will give you; for upon this one the Father, even God, has put his seal [of approval].” John 6:27, of Jesus, …(NWT).


Leave a Reply

Website Apps