Most of us here believe a JW reformation is sorely needed. What changes would have to be made? What would the organization look like? Is a reformation possible? or is it futile? Why would it be futile? Let me see if I can explain.

I would think most of us agree that the GB must admit that they have not been appointed by Jesus. I also think most of us here would say they must leave unclear matters up to each Christian’s conscience (birthdays, blood transfusions, work matters etc.). I think many of us would also say that much more tolerance is needed for those of us that do not agree with much of the Society’s teachings on doctrinal matters. What would be the natural result of this if it were put into practice?

Since the GB would have admitted they are not God’s channel, there would be nothing wrong with reading “apostate” material or commentaries from other christian writers. Many JWs would realize that, as long as they study God’s word for answers and act according to their conscience, their personal interpretation of certain unclear matters is just as valid as anyone’s. Soon, human nature being what it is, certain brothers would want to gather only with those they completely agree with. JWs have been taught  to be dogmatic and intolerant of others interpretations, so I think the dividing of the organization would come quick and be drastic. Each splinter group would believe they are the true JWs. The JWs would be no different than any other christian denomination. But I believe, though not ideal, that is how it has to be.  Paul told the Corinthians in 1 Cor. 11:19 – “Indeed, there have to be factions among you, for only so will it become clear who among you are genuine.”

Unity cannot be legislated. That is what the Catholic church tried to do for centuries and what the JWs have done. Enforced conformity is a false unity. Unity must come from the heart, it must be born of love for our fellow brother. If there is true love, tolerance on unclear matters would be the norm. We wouldn’t put love of our doctrine above love for our brother. Protestant churches have split into thousands of denominations because they can’t show love through tolerance. At least most of them don’t think all other denominations are condemned by God. The JW organization does not show tolerance and doesn’t consider anyone that doesn’t believe exactly as they do as their brother. The JWs sad to say have elevated love of doctrine to an extreme level.

My ideal reformation would go even beyond what I previously mentioned. I think JWs should drop the name and simply choose to be called Christians. Trying to differentiate oneself from other Christians is only sectarian. I think each congregation should choose when it would meet, what would be the format of the meetings, and who should be appointed as elders. There would be no secret judicial committees. If it became generally known someone claiming to be a brother was an immoral person or a greedy person etc. the whole cong. would decide if they should remove him as part of the cong. Then each member of the cong. according to his conscience would limit their association with that individual. Members of the cong. would be taught to be tolerant of other opinions on unclear matters. Individual congs. would decide how they would serve the community in good works etc. Nearby congs. perhaps would decide to have periodic assemblies. And what would happen to the vast infrastructure of branch buildings and printing equipment? Sold and given to charity.

As you can see I’ve come to the conclusion that a highly structured organization such as the JWs just isn’t viable nor biblical. This is why I think reformation is more or less futile. What we need is dismantlement.

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20 Comments on What Would a Reformation Look Like?

  1. Amos says:

    Hi Andrew,

    You’ve basically said what I also believe….a reformation would be a waste of time, as who would be responsible for deciding what stays & what goes with respect to doctrines. A better thing would be to completely disolve the whole (unholy) organization & start afresh along the lines of the BS’s, as I believe they have the right idea….no GB, a basic standard of beliefs, & ALL matters being decided (as you said) by the entire LOCAL individual congregation.

    As I personally believe that CT Russell was very close to being right with most of his understandings, this would be a good place to start, with his writings. I think he got it fairly close with Tabernacle Shaddows & Volume 1, & should have left it at that, with just a general discussion of the scriptures after that, instead of trying so hard to find differing views as I believe he did. Please don’t get me wrong about CTR, as I believe that he was very genuinely trying to rightly divide the scriptures…..but it was not possible for anyone at that time to do, as there had to be more events to occur before some things could be better understood.
    You know that at times, to understand some prophecies, the events had to occur first before we then know more precisely what to look for in fulfillment.

    There are several others around who have also made some good contributions to christian beliefs that should also be looked at, IMO.

    These are just a few of my thoughts on the matter.


  2. JJ says:

    Well thought out post brother Andrew. It is a huge topic and there are so many “what if” things about it. If younger GB members had the will to make an admission as did the Plain Truth Magazine folks did a few years ago, that would be a start. If they brought the doctrinal teachings on Blood, Disfellowshipping, and other matters of conscience more in line with what the Bible teaches, it would be an enormous step in the right direction. It may well be impossible. Only time will tell and hopefully we won’t all be TOO old and gray (or worse) too see what happens someday.


  3. Dennis says:

    Hi Brother Andrew,

    Thanks for spending the time on this article. I too enjoyed it. I would also agree that reformation is very unlikely and that splintering off into different groups is the more likely scenario. Something akin to the Worldwide Church of God experience. I’m sure that each splinter group will consider the other as apostate, at least for several years. I really do believe that this will indeed happen someday. I, like JJ, hope to be around to see how it turns out. As an interesting sidebar, I was at a Bible Student Convention in California last year and they had a speaker from the Dawn (for those that might not be aware, they publish The Dawn magazine and other Bible Student publications but in no way exercise control over any local congregations). He said that he was having a conversation with a couple of higher up Bethel elders and asked them how they viewed the Bible Students. The purported reply was, We consider you our spiritual brothers. I thought that was interesting (and also somewhat confusing).

    Your Brother,



  4. Greybeard says:

    Hi Andrew,

    I always enjoy your articles and this one is no exception. Very well done. However, like others here have stated, I do not see a reformation ever happening. It would be great to hear the GB admit they were never appointed by Jesus or even Elders admit they were never appointed by holy spirit. I would bet my life that we will never hear such an admission unless it is forced my Jehovah God. Someday I believe that will happen and I would love nothing more than to see this in my life time.
    As I recently pointed out on the “questions” blog, I believe Jehovah’s Witness’s are apart of Babylon the Great. I see the Beast as the entity that will dismantle the JW org and all other organized religions that direct people to themselves as head of the congregation instead of Christ. At that time the only congregations that will stand are those that have been directly relying on Jesus as their mediator and head. ” Jehovah’s Witness’s” will be scattered. They may gather in small groups but the only way they will survive is if they look to Christ and not man. Then maybe they will have a chance. That is MHO.

    Your brother,


  5. serein says:

    i think most will be lost in faith and not no were to turn realy the older ones anyway, i think the younger ones would be more enthusiastic and wouldnt form any groups seperating themselfs,but thats only if it all crumbled.which i dont think it ever will, i do think that one day there will be changes but it will prob be brought in very slowly gradualy, they realy need to do this i think, as more begin to leave in search of real truths theyl see something needs to be done,but then on the otherhand i dont think they wil as no ones got the guts to stand up and say it needs to change no one has strength to go forward, to scared to be kicked in to the gutters and lost from familys,its so sad,u know what theres prob more than not who agree with us but dear not stand up and say it to be so,if things changed for the better and i saw this to be so and they welcomed me and spoke to me lovingly as christians should id go back,i wish i did have people a group of some sort that i could be apart of besides on a web site that i could be close to and feel less loney but as yet there isnt anywere i can go were i live to get that,no bible students in s yorshire uk no one like me as far as i know,i feel i had to leave and diss myself to be free to search and be sure of all things and that ment no one talks to me anymore and thats so sad, thats what needs to change


    • andrew says:

      Hello serein,
      Sometimes adversity can draw us closer to God. That surely was David’s experience in his many difficulties. I believe all of us to one degree or another have faced situations where we just didn’t know what to do. Jehovah can give us peace of mind and the strength to go ahead when we are discouraged. We can only do the best we can with the circumstances we’ve been dealt.
      Christian Love


  6. serein says:

    I’m so closer to God I’m almost on his lap I’m so close, I feel I’ve never been more happy than I am now I feel I’m on the right path and staying on it. I do feel lost sometimes and think when I see a sis from the hall please talk to me but they ignore. I think sometimes we need that push over the edge to see out side of the bubble and realise what we need to do, I wish the gb would admit faults and change because theres so many people following and are really lost and don’t know it yet want paradise to come like now for all the lost souls to see the truth and I don’t even care if I’m not one of them just want it for everyone else, I’m so sad for everyone in the world.


  7. DanielB says:

    Rather than reformations, what we may expect to see is transitioning. Not just from study oriented groups as the witnesses, but others as well. Knowledge is becoming more abundant. I have many subjects in mind that I can hardly wait to share, after having come across clarifications since having been a witness. I would just like to get my home church (bible study) going in my home in May. This was effective in the first century, and was the norm for the church environment. I have friends who are like-minded (excuse the JW-speak) in this, and we have enjoyed some good times doing this. At least I can reform myself in this sense, and enjoy the God-given liberty!


    • andrew says:

      I agree DanielB that a home church would probably be the best choice for me as well.


      • rus virgil says:

        The “home church” is what the Bible shows / teaches
        and all the “home church”-es around the earth have to obey the Heavenly King Jesus Christ by having faith and following His teaching / this way they will become part of the “one” Kingdom , of Jesus Christ
        From prophecies, it is revealed that at this time there will be a WAY made by Jehovah God
        and it will be called “The Holy Way”
        do strive yourselves to enter and go on it !

        Isaiah 35:
        8. And a highway shall be there, and a way;
        and it shall be called the Holy Way.
        The unclean shall not pass over it, but it shall be for the redeemed;
        the wayfaring men, yes, the simple ones and fools, shall not err in it and lose their way.
        Amplified B.



        • bruceguth says:

          Rus and Andrew,
          Yes, many home churches have been attended by those with witness backgrounds, myself included. I could give a reference or 2; quite scholarly friends / brothers in “Abba, Father” (Romans 8:15; Ga 4:6). Isaiah wrote such encouragement to us over the “sprouting” that occurs surrounding the chosen nation’s activities soon realized. (Is 60,61). I am so pleased to see you brothers giving attention to clear spiritual comprehension. That is Jehovah’s (Yehoweh’s) work on your minds through our Master, Jesus. I’m going to move around this site some… Don’t know just how to do it yet, but I would like to find others with JW background in my area. Any suggestions?


          • Dennis says:

            Rus and Andrew,
            I would like to find others with JW background in my area. Any suggestions?

            If your in Central California email me privately.


        • Dennis says:

          Hi Rus,

          Why do you think Isa. 35:8 is being fulfilled now instead of in the millennium?



  8. bruceguth says:

    Oh, I should tell you; just recognised that I am posting under 2 names here. bruceguth and DanielB. For some reason, it took 2 attempts to sign up here.


  9. bruceguth says:

    Thank you Dennis. However I do not see a link anywhere to email you. Need some direction… I have lived in central CA, though I am a bit N. of there.


  10. JJ says:


    Registered users can Private Message each other at any time. Log in and go to your dashboard and click on “messages”.


  11. David Paul says:

    Dear JW Struggle team,

    Thank you for providing a space for those who have been denied a voice by the WBT$. Thank you too for your thoughtful articles and kind and healing words to the spiritually abused victims of the WBT$.

    Before commenting on this topic, it may be well to point out that religionists are lying when they try to get us to believe that “religious belief” (in a supremacist context) is the same as “spiritual faith” (in Jesus and the gospel). Once the WBT$ and their “truncated gospel” has stolen your faith and salvation, they need to con you into believing you actually somehow possess these!

    Redefining FAITH (a wide opening of our spiritual eyes of discernment) so that it instead means BELIEF in a supremacist set of doctrines and dogma, is a trick from Nicaea that lives on in many “statements of faith” today. And you thought the Watchtower rejected everything bad that came from Nicaea? Quite the opposite! Where do you think Watchtower legalism, moralism, ethnocentrism, Gnosticism, and formalistic/ritualistic liturgy came from? Talk about straining out the gnat (trinity) to gulp down the camel (the entire anti-gospel from the anti-Christ)!

    Following the WBT$ (instead of Jesus) means following their false, depleted, and/or “truncated gospel”. The terribly inconvenient truth is that this renders one a faithless unbeliever (2 Cor 4:4 compare translations at

    Reforming the Watchtower? Reform religion? Reform “a snare and a racket”? Reform God’s age old enemy – the one that stole his children in Eden, and killed his son at Golgotha?

    Society can be reformed, not religion.

    Religion is antithetical to authentic spiritual development. Religion cannot and will not yield to the light of the full and true gospel which exposes its illegitimacy and irrelevance.

    The advances due to the first reformation of society (1517 onward) were made possible by the partial death stroke to religion. The flawed outcome was “freedom of religion”.

    The worldwide return of millions to simple, organic, faith based communities (house churches) suggests that the second reformation of society may result in “freedom from religion” (due to the exposing of the man of lawlessness, the anti-Christ, being religion in general).

    Millions are being called to “be the church” or body of Christ every minute of every day – instead of “come to Church” or “go to Church” at special times, to parade our external transformation with all the other hypocrites that resist spiritual regeneration or rebirth (inner transformation) by the Holy Spirit.

    Millions of New Covenant believers are learning that God is not found in buildings, ruling religious hierarchies, religion, programs, liturgy/services, supremacy, legalism, moralism, ethnocentrism, Gnosticism, sects, cults, and so on.

    Instead God is found spiritually indwelling the heart of a believer who was granted repentance of their fallen, aberrant condition, and granted faith in Christ, after hearing and pursuing the full and true gospel message (Rom 10:16,17), which includes imputed righteousness, imputed holiness, imputed sinlessness, and imputed sonship.

    Every time I watch this video (link below) I get a renewed sense of the above, and how God is confounding the likes of the proud, arrogant, boastful, self-aggrandizing, yet totally apostate WBT$ – by working the same wonders in autonomous people worldwide who have never met or spoken, and without any (particular) organisation. Simple Jesus followers – Christ centred, and gospel focussed.

    Video link –

    May God by his unmerited favour (grace) continue your increase in Christ through the multi-component message or gospel about him (Jesus).

    Greetings and blessings

    ©2011, David Paul
    Everlasting Good News Ministries™


  12. Amos says:

    Hi David,
    I agree with your summary of the WTS….spot on!
    I also agree with your words regarding “religion”….this is almost completely devoid of biblical instruction, & is the contrivance of evil minds hiding behind the “truth of scripture”, determined to bind up those who follow them. The truth of the “Gospel”, is it not bound up with the statements from our LORD concerning “LOVE?” “I am giving you a new commandment”….”love of GOD & love of neighbour”. Then just read 1 Cor. 13, & remember that the Ap. Paul was chosen by & received the message directly from the LORD HIMSELF, this was about 3 years after the crucifiction. This event blows away the thought that Jesus had no direct, personal contact with mankind following His ascension.

    I have also been viewing the “house2house” & “simple church” sites & forums for about two years now (though I have not done so for a few months). I am also now involved in 3 “house churches” in the new area where I have moved to (some of these brethren were at Tony & Felicity’s tour in Australia). I am finding this to be a great blessing & very encouraging….no pre-judging, freedom of thought & expression without repercussion.




  13. Reader says:

    Dear All;
    Some Scriptural spoilers
    Luke 22 v 31 that’s the Disciples
    Acts 20 v 29 that’s the Apostles Congregations

    So why should we think it should be better for us?
    It is as we see, is it not?


    Acts 5 v 40,41


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