I went to the doctor the other day for a check up on my health. I told the doctor that I wanted to start exercising and eating right in hopes of not needing to take the blood pressure medication he had me on anymore. My doctor told me this would be impossible so I said I wanted another opinion. Then he told me that he alone was the best doctor on the planet and that he alone possessed the wisdom of God. He also said if I leave his care and stop taking my medication I would die an eternal death. He then said if I question him or discuss my doubts about him with any of his patents he would have me quarantined for the rest of my life in a mental institution.
By now I am sure you must know I made this story up. But does it sound familiar to you? If you are a Jehovah’s Witness or were one as I was for years, this should have a familiar tone. Please notice the following statements found in the Watchtower:
All who want to understand the Bible should appreciate that the “greatly diversified wisdom of God” can become known only through Jehovah’s channel of communication, the faithful and discreet slave. (The Watchtower; 10/1/1994; pp. 8 )
No matter where we may live on earth, God’s Word continues to serve as a light to our path and a lamp to our roadway as to our conduct and beliefs. (Ps. 119:105) But Jehovah God has also provided his visible organization, his “faithful and discreet slave,” made up of spirit anointed ones, to help Christians in all nations to understand and apply properly the Bible in their lives. Unless we are in touch with this channel of communication that God is using, we will not progress along the road to life, no matter how much Bible reading we do. (The Watchtower; 12/1/1981; pp. 27)
“Only Jehovah’s Witnesses, those of the anointed remnant and the “great crowd,” as a united organization under the protection of the Supreme Organizer, have any Scriptural hope of surviving the impending end of this doomed system dominated by Satan the Devil.” Watchtower 1989 Sep 1 p.19
I would walk out on any doctor if they said the things the doctor said at the beginning of the article. However, I lived through years of these types of statements as a Jehovah’s Witness without realizing how ridiculous they were. I do remember being shocked at times but I still went along with it. I didn’t want to be put into “quarantine” or disfellowshipped.
The governing body of Jehovah’s Witnesses take a very high and outstanding view of themselves as the only hope for mankind and Gods sole channel of communication to the entire human race. For more on this please see the previous article: How The Governing Body Views Itself
One governing body member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses who at one time occupied this high position ended up having a “crisis of conscience” and his first book was entitled just that, Crisis of Conscience. His name was Ray Franz. Every person who wants to know the real truth about Jehovah’s Witnesses should read both of his books, “Crisis of Conscience” and “In Search of Christian Freedom.” Regarding the claims of the Watchtower Ray wrote the following in his second book In Search For Christian Freedom:
Men can make no greater claim to authority than to claim to speak for God – even more than that – to claim to be his sole channel of communication to all mankind. To occupy such a position would be an awesome responsibility indeed, and one that should logically call for the greatest of humility on the part of imperfect humans if they were in fact assigned to fill it.
A fitting analogy might be that of a slave sent forth by a king to deliver a proclamation. If impressed with his own importance, lacking humility, the messenger might feel free to add to the message or make adjustments, while nonetheless insisting that all hearers should accept whatever he presented as a bona fide royal order. If people questioned him on certain points, he might become resentful, seek to awe them with his royal backing in order to override any doubts about the authenticity of his statements.
By contrast, a truly humble messenger would scrupulously avoid any alterations of what came from the royal source. He would not become resentful if asked for proof of full authenticity for what he said, nor would he criticize if some took steps to confirm that the message he presented was delivered just as given, free from embroidery or change. Rather than decry such investigation as an abusive lack of respect for himself (the mere slave), he would accept it, even welcome it, as evidence of the inquirer’s concern and deep respect for the will of his master, the Sovereign.
Again, these are the words of a former member of the governing body of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Could he have made his point any better? I don’t think so. Thank you Ray! Ray Franz was truly a humble brother and he never condemned his fellow brothers/slaves as they did him. For a very good commentary on Jesus parables about the Watchful, Faithful, and Disloyal Slaves, check this out on Werner Bible Commentary
Jesus gave us plenty of advice on how to find knowledge and truth and he never pointed to anyone except himself exclusively.
John 14:6, “Jesus said to him: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (NWT)
Matthew 23:10, “Neither be called ‘leaders,’ for YOUR Leader is one, the Christ.” (NWT)
John 14:26, “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”(NASB)
John 15:26, “When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me.” (NIV)
John 15:5, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (NIV)
Luke 11:9-10, “Accordingly I say to YOU, Keep on asking, and it will be given YOU; keep on seeking, and YOU will find; keep on knocking, and it will be opened to YOU. For everyone asking receives, and everyone seeking finds, and to everyone knocking it will be opened.” (NWT)
John 10:9, “I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.” (NASB)
May all of us prayerfully consider our relationship with Christ Jesus and let no man enslave us to follow them. (1 Corinthians 7:23; Mark 7:13) Psalms 146:3 applies to all men on earth including the governing body, the human leaders of Jehovah’s Witnesses, “Do not put YOUR trust in nobles, Nor in the son of earthling man, to whom no salvation belongs.”
Your brother and fellow slave in Christ,