Apostates are a figment of the JW imagination. Not necessarily the dictionary definition of the word apostate, which simply means a person who leaves their religion–for by that definition everyone who leaves any religion to become a JW is an apostate–but the JW conception of the APOSTATE, both as an individual and as a ‘group’ is imaginary. For starters, the Watchtower goes beyond the definition of merely leaving the religion. According to the September 1, 1980 letter to all circuit and district overseers, if a person “persist in believing other doctrine” than what the Organization currently teaches, they are “apostatizing”. The Watchtower meaning of Apostasy therefore includes heresy, dissension of any kind, and is designed in such a way to prevent schism and grassroots reformation.
Taking a page straight from the book 1984, they hold that any dissenting thought is a “thoughtcrime” and paired with the informing system where deviant thoughts are reported to the elders, it makes millions of JWs “thought police”.
The new March 2013 Awake magazine pages 10-11 (Available online at JW.org the official site of Jehovah’s Witnesses) has an article about a woman that studied and then converted from Judaism to Jehovah’s Witnesses. There are three key points in the article that actually encourage those with discernment to go against the Watchtower ban on books written by those with dissenting views.
My judicial trial is now over. The elders were not arrogant or mean spirited. Mutual respect was shown by all four of us, but these men were compelled to follow the Watchtower policy playbook, and by those standards of men they had no alternative but to disfellowship me. I do not blame them, and harbor no ill will towards them.
After much prayer I felt that I had to let my light shine, and that the Lord was with me, giving me the words that I should say. I was found guilty of “apostasy” as defined by the Watchtower Organization, and they will be announcing that I am no longer one of Jehovah’s Witnesses on Tuesday the 25th of September. I am not devastated, nor downhearted. Quite the contrary, as literally hundreds of people have been expressing their thanks and prayers in my behalf. It is overwhelming and very much a humbling experience for me.
I would like to discuss briefly in this post just what the JWStruggle.com website that you are reading right now is all about. But first a short recap: In my previous article entitled “Apostate Trial Part 1” I wrote about the news that the local Elders are after me, despite the fact that I have not attended meetings in over a year and have no leavening influence on their local flock, as the friends that attend in my area already snub or shun me when they see me around town. The elders will be “spiritually stoning” me in a few days at their judicial tribunal (1 Corinthians 4:3-6, HCSB) and I am preparing for it now, even as I write this article.
The elders sent me a letter summoning me to a judicial committee, accusing me of “spreading apostate teachings that go against Bible truth as taught by Jehovah’s Witnesses.” For those of you that are in the know, this means that they have already determined that I am guilty of the above mentioned “crime”. The letter was sent certified mail, and when I received it I signed and printed “Martin Luther” on the return receipt. I wrote back and asked for a date one week later as I could not make the 8/30 day they had ordained for my spiritual stoning.
A continuance was granted and I was given a tentative date of 9/12/2012 so we will see what happens. I am not afraid of this meeting, however it is not something that I relish either. I personally feel it must be done as my conscience will not allow me otherwise. The early Christians were fed to the lions and Yeshua said that if we confessed him as Christ we would be persecuted and delivered up before the synagogue and expelled. (John 16:1-4)
Because of my love for Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW’s), it’s easy for me to maintain a positive tone and show kindness toward them on this blog. Also, I do not promote blogs or websites which slander, show maliciousness, bitterness or have an ax to grind – so to speak – with JW’s or the Watchtower organization. […]