You may have heard the expression “Where’s the beef?” It is a phrase that questions the substance of an idea, event, or product. The Watchtower of 1956, June 1 page 346 paragraph 11 entitled “Keep Pace by Conforming to Theocratic Requirements” said this:
Since the “faithful and discreet slave” has been entrusted with all the Master’s goods, then let us view with proper mental perception that whatever the ‘faithful slave’ does is for our good. The slave is thereby fulfilling its own obligation before Jehovah in getting His work done. Therefore the slave’s will is Jehovah’s will. Rebellion against the slave is rebellion against God. A proper mental attitude toward the slave’s direction is a part of keeping pace with the New World society.
After hearing a comment like this we do well to ask “Where’s the beef?” When did the “faithful and discreet slave” begin speaking for Jehovah? When was it appointed as his mouthpiece and channel of communication? The answer you will likely receive is in 1919.
The truth is that God in times past has indeed selected and used individuals to act in a special role. Take for instance Moses. YHWH commissioned Moses to be His mouthpiece, His channel of communication if you will, before Pharaoh and before the Israelites. Was Moses to appear before the Israelites and start giving orders without any proof that he was who he claimed to be, God’s channel?
Let us read Exodus 4:1 – (NWT) ” However, Moses in answering said: “But suppose they do not believe me and do not listen to my voice, because they are going to say, ‘Jehovah did not appear to you.’”
God proceeds to give him 3 signs or miracles that Moses would perform in front of the Israelites to show that he was indeed God’s spokesman. When Moses speaks with the Israelites he performs the miraculous signs. Exodus 4:30,31 – “Then Aaron spoke all the words that Jehovah had spoken to Moses, and he performed the signs under the eyes of the people. 31 At this the people believed. ”
These miraculous signs were the proof to show God had selected Moses.
When God chose the nations of Israel to be His special property at Mount Sinai there were also miraculous signs. Exodus 19:18,19 – “And Mount Si´nai smoked all over, due to the fact that Jehovah came down upon it in fire; and its smoke kept ascending like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain was trembling very much. 19 When the sound of the horn became continually louder and louder, Moses began to speak, and the [true] God began to answer him with a voice.” (See also Hebrews 12:18-21)
There was no doubt whatsoever in the people’s minds that YHWH was present and that they had entered into a covenant relationship with Him, becoming His special property.
From time to time YHWH would appoint prophets to speak to the people or to other nations. The people would know these prophets were true prophets if what they said miraculously came true. (Deuteronomy 18:21,22)
Jesus was God’s son and His special spokesman. The gospel accounts are full of miraculous proofs and signs that Jesus indeed was who he claimed to be.
How about when the Christian congregation was started? Were there miraculous proofs that they were now God’s approved people? Yes of course. There was the miraculous outpouring of holy spirit on Pentecost. Also notice Acts 2:43 – ” Indeed, fear began to fall upon every soul, and many portents and signs began to occur through the apostles.”
Acts 5:12 – “Moreover, through the hands of the apostles many signs and portents continued to occur among the people;”
It was completely clear that God was using the apostles in a special way. The miracles made it clear the God had selected the Christian congregation to be His people.
When the good news went out to Samaria notice what happened. Acts 8:5-7 “Philip, for one, went down to the city of Sa·mar´i·a and began to preach the Christ to them. 6 With one accord the crowds were paying attention to the things said by Philip while they listened and looked at the signs he was performing. 7 For there were many that had unclean spirits, and these would cry out with a loud voice and come out. Moreover, many that were paralyzed and lame were cured.”
Again there was no question that Philip had God’s spirit.
When Paul visited the congregations did he go without proof of his apostleship? 2 Corinthians 12:12 – ” Indeed, the signs of an apostle were produced among YOU by all endurance, and by signs and portents and powerful works.”
Because of his miraculous works there was no doubt that Paul truly was an apostle of Jesus. In fact Paul chastises the Corinthian congregation because they tolerated and accepted as apostles those who didn’t have the credentials. 2 Cor. 11:20 (MSG) – “You have such admirable tolerance for impostors who rob your freedom, rip you off, steal you blind, put you down – even slap your face!”
2 Corinthians 11:4 – “For, as it is, if someone comes and preaches a Jesus other than the one we preached, or YOU receive a spirit other than what YOU received, or good news other than what YOU accepted, YOU easily put up [with him].”
Jesus also in his letter to the congregation at Ephesus commends them for not believing everyone who claimed to be an apostle without proof. Revelation 2:2 – “‘I know your deeds, and your labor and endurance, and that you cannot bear bad men, and that you put those to the test who say they are apostles, but they are not, and you found them liars.”
In view of what we have considered if God had truly made a special appointment in 1919 of a few men, what should we have expected to see? Since that appointment would have been just as important as the selection that God made of the Israelites as His special people and of His selection of the Christian congregation in the first century, we should have expected to see the same miraculous signs, portents, and voices from heaven. There was none of that. JW’s are asked to put complete trust and faith in a group of men that make the most grandiose claim that men can make, namely to speak for God. All this without a shred of evidence. There have been no miracles, signs, or portents.
When someone wants to get to the bottom of a matter he must approach the question from all angles. If he is looking for a new car and wants to know which car is the best one for him, he doesn’t restrict himself to reading articles put out by Ford Motor Company. If he does he will for sure end up with a Ford. If a juror will only listen to the prosecution’s case and refuses to even consider the defense’s arguments in a trial, he is going to find the defendant guilty.
It is only by listening to opposing views on a matter can one make a decision based on knowledge. The Society only allows JWs to hear propaganda from the Society. Listening to those who don’t agree is not allowed and labeled as wicked. JWs can not make an informed decision in this situation. Of course they are going to end up with a Ford, find the defendant guilty, and think JWs are the only ones with God’s favor.
There is no beef to go with the Governing Body’s bun. Their authority is all smoke and mirrors, without substance. After awakening to this fact, we all ask ourselves: How in the world did I put my trust in men with absolutely no proof?