Order Free Book – Charles Taze Russell is not the Founder of the Jehovah’s Witnesses

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Quoting form author Kenneth Rawson, in his book, Pastor Russell the Founder of the Bible Students, not the Jehovah’s Witnesses (2nd Edition), we read the following:

With all the Internet exchange of information, Jehovah’s Witnesses are beginning to realize that the image of Judge Rutherford is a liability and they are out to minimize his stature and fictionalize a relationship between Pastor Russell and Jehovah’s Witnesses that never existed.

Additionally, there are thousands of Jehovah’s Witnesses and ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses who are dissatisfied with the current operation of the Watch Tower and the history of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Unfortunately, many have become mentally depressed.

Both my parents were Bible Students before Judge Rutherford gained control of the Watch Tower.  From a young age I have vivid memories of discussions my parents had with other Bible Students from Pastor Russell’s day concerning the takeover of the Watch Tower by Judge Rutherford and the direction he pursued.

 Also, my situation in the Bible Student movement during the 1940s through the 1960s enabled me to have discussions with more close associates of Pastor Russell than other Bible Students. This history has been invaluable to me.

 I learned from these associates of Pastor Russell that in 1926 Judge Rutherford discarded the basic Scriptural teaching of character development. Galatians 5:18-25 and 2 Peter 1:4-11.  He said we are characters and can’t change.  They felt this was to justify some of his questionable actions.  Actually, this was the beginning of the end of many Bible Students’ relationship to the Watch Tower. Why?

 Pastor Russell’s Bible Students cherished the teaching of character development.  They believed that the 144,000 were to share with Jesus in the Kingdom, as sympathetic priests (1 Peter 2:9) who would nurture, develop in love and judge the world of mankind.  To qualify for this work they must now develop the character likeness of the Heavenly Father.  2 Corinthians 3:18.

The writer published some of this material in the 1950s, 1970s and most of it in the 1990s, but the need is now greater than ever.  The information goes forth with the prayer that by our Heavenly Father’s grace it will give Scriptural direction to those who love Jehovah.

To read more, click on this link:  C.T. Russell Not Founder of JWs

235 comments to Order Free Book – Charles Taze Russell is not the Founder of the Jehovah’s Witnesses

  • hank

    While you are looking for the scroll with half brother, please find the scroll with Luke 1:25, “Now at last the Lord has helped me.” That’s right, have a child. So when you find that scroll we will assume John the Baptist is from the you know who.

  • hank

    Gen. 4:8,”Then Cain said to his brother.” Could you tell me which scroll says half brother, so I can verify they had different fathers

  • Peter,
    I do not mean to sound confrontational because we do not agree on some things. I believe you are true to your belief in God, and our lord Jesus. From your comments, It appears (to me) you take the Bible to be correct in all scriptures. I have not found this to be so. Yes I believe the Bible is the word of God, but I have satisfied myself that some scriptures have been altered. To correct a comment you made toward one of my post…”I have not taken works outside the Bible to build conclusions on.” When I refer to the Bible, I am also speaking of the Scrolls the Bible was taken from. If the Bible does not match the full meaning of a scripture taken from the Scrolls, I take it as having been changed.
    And example: In the Bible (Genesis) after, Eve gave birth to Cain, she says, “I have gotten a man from the Lord.” This scripture is very different from the Scrolls. Here it reads, “I have gotten a man from the angel of the Lord.”
    I believe you would agree, since the Bible was written from the Scrolls, the scriptures must match the Scrolls, or be found to be in error.
    To have made changes in the Bible is not above mans power…one religion (LDS) has gone so far as to add a complete book to the Bible. The Catholics have changed their Bible many times, even with additions of books not even in the scrolls. The Watch Tower has made changes.
    I understand Jehovah was well aware people would make changes, it is why he hid the same information in other scriptures. It is these other scriptures that highlight what has been changed. If what I have said here offends you, I apologize…it is not my intension. I respect you as a servant of God, and a teacher. I have learned much from you, and look forward to learning a clearer understanding of Gods word from you. If in the future you do not agree with how I present scripture, please feel free to say so, and I welcome hearing your reasons.
    Your brother,
    Domenic

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Domenic,

      I am not sure what you mean by scrolls. Do you mean manuscripts or translations? From the oldest and most reliable manuscripts we can generally get a consistent and accurate translation of the Bible.

      I don’t know what scroll you are talking about that says, “I have gotten a man from the angel of the Lord.” Even if this were a valid translation, to make a leep and suggest that the angel or spirit materialized and has relations with Eve to produce Cain is reading much into the scriptures with no additional support.

      Gen 4:1 (RVI) “And the man knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man with the help of Jehovah.”

      Other translations convey a similiar thought. I cannot find any translation that agrees with Cain coming from an angel of the Lord.

      I recommend these links:

      http://www.friendsofjehovahswitnesses.com/2012/01/07/the-historic-journey-of-jehovahs-written-word/

      http://www.friendsofjehovahswitnesses.com/2012/02/09/how-to-choose-a-bible-translation/

      • Dupin

        The source for Domenic’s quotation would be the Targum of Jonathan, which is more of a rendering of what the author thought was meant. It appears the perspective of “Jonathon” was probably the Kabbalistic tradition, though I would have to see more of that work to know for sure.

        The actual Hebrew text doesn’t have the word angel in it. However, the text isn’t precise and can be rendered several different ways. Since it does say that Adam “knew,” a euphemism for having marital relations, Eve,then any translation must not imply that God was the father of the child. That is why some translators add the word “help” though it doesn’t appear in the Hebrew text. If we understand that Eve thought Cain might become the line of the promised deliverer, then the best translation for the Hebrew “aith” might be “for,” hence “I have made (Literally “created,” [qanah {H 7069}] a man for Jehovah.” Of course we all know the sad outcome of that story.

  • Keepha

    What I don’t understand is that I asked these questions to Peter and others> which one describes Charles Taze Russell

    1 Was Russell an Apostle? No

    2. Was Russell a Prophet? No

    3. Was Russell inspired by the Father? No

    4. Was Russell the Faithful Slave? No

    5. It was said that Russell borrowed some of his theology from seven day Adventist, is this true?

    6. Did Russell say that when one reads the Bible alone, he goes into darkness within two years? yes or no

    7. Russell left public school at the age to 14 and never completed school. …but Russell your leader or mentor had never completed high school, much less a University education.

    8 Did Russell have any training in the original language of the scriptures? no

    Information on Russell’s credential was extracted from the book The Kingdom of the Cults By Walter Martin pg. 55-58

    And so if it is claimed that Russell made no special revelation or vision for his teachings and no special authority on his own behalf. Then how is it that Russell suggested that one should read six volumes on the Studies on the Scriptures, why is it that the era of the 1800’s still holds one captive? For Russell to say it is better to leave the Scriptures unread and read his books, rather that the Scriptures I think is a serious sin. If I have said anything improper or inaccurate here please with proper evidence demonstrate that I am wrong.

    thanks

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Keefa,

      I need to make some corrections in what you said.  

      Russell is commonly attacked for saying that he saw that anyone who stopped reading the volumes and only read the scriptures or other writings went out of the Truth (paraphrase).  This is really a weak representation of Russell’s views.  There is only one time in forty years of Russell’s writing hundreds of thousands of pages that he said anything like this.  Why would he say it?  Brother Russell was simply making an honest observation of what had happended to the particular group of brethren he was referring to.  To quote this unusual statement made in one obscure article and to ignore the constant and promonent theme of his teachings of Christian liberty and topical Bible Study (which the Studies in the Scriptures attempts to assist with) is either an ignorant or disingenuous statement.   

      Here is what is going on.  Russell was the world’s Pastor in his day.  He was loved worldwide.  His sermons were in 2,000 newspapers every week accross the world.  Newspapers were the news media of the day (no radio and TV).  People shared their newspapers with their family and neighbors after they read the news.  All the priests and pastors in the world combined, did not compare with his access to the public and his popularity among the massess.  Revisionist historions have since changed the picture and pushed Russell into obscurity.  Today, the Internet is reviving the historical truth..

      Half of these criticisms and attacks against Russell existed in hiis day and new criticisms have been invented since.  In Russell’s day, the public dismissed the criticims as tabloid sensationilsim and attacks from jealous pastors.  What generally happens is that Russell’s critics come up with a checklist of false and/or misleading accursations against Russell and lazy inquirers are glad to jump on board and embrace the criticims without investigating and verifying the facts.

      Yes I do think Russell is the Faithful and Discrete Slave.  I call him the Faithful and Wise Steward.  I would be glad to explain why from the Bible upon your request.  However I realize that once I state this opinion, many people will not listen and discount anything I say thereafter as nonsence.

      Let me answer the other questions.  Although I realize that people will likely to say, “He answered YES to this question and that is cray.”  Then they have not interest in learning the reason why I answered YES.

      5. It was said that Russell borrowed some of his theology from seven day Adventist, is this true?  》》Russell learned from studying every religious denomination, the Reformers, Bible Scholars, the Adventists and many others.  In His early days he studied with a Bible group in Allegany Pennsylvania and they went through each basic doctrine together to find the Truth. 

      6. Did Russell say that when one reads the Bible alone, he goes into darkness within two years? yes or no  》》Yes, Brother Russell once made that observation in a Watchtower and it would have all but gone by unoticed except that his critics dug it up and have blown it out of proportion.

      7. Russell left public school at the age to 14 and never completed school. Peter Karavas even you yourself attended college as well as your wonderful son, but Russell your leader or mentor had never completed high school, much less a University education. 》》 My leader is Christ, not Russell, however you can call Russell my mentor. Who is your mentor? Russell was very intelligent and so ahead of his peers that college would have been a waste of time.  By about 21 with his business smarts, He was one of the richest men in America.    As a young man, he was the first to develop the concept of a department store.  With his genious, he could have become a billionare had he pursued business instead of the Gospel of Christ.  At age 4 his was reading the newspaper to family visitors and discussing the news.  By the way, Russell is in good compnay with the Apostles, not having been indoctrinated by the bias of Theological seminaries, most of which embrace hell, trinty and immortality of the soul.

      Information on Russell’s credential was extracted from the book The Kingdom of the Cults By Walter Martin pg. 55-58  –  》》Watler Marten’s flimsy criticims are easily disproved by the honest investigator.  By the way, his doctorate degree was received through a mail order college in Santa Ana, California.

      • Dupin

        I might add, Br. Peter, that Russell’s influences came mainly from another branch of the Adventist Movement Joshua Himes carried forward after the disappointments under Miller than the Seventh Day Adventists under his contemporary Ellen White. Sadly folks tend to think Ellen’s group was the only one to carry on the Advent tradition in her unique way.

    • David Fuhrmann

      Try reading 2Kings chapter 22. This was a time period in history, where they had lost/misplaced the book of the Law. It was found by Hilkiah, read to Israel, and it brought great repentance.

      Question; Doesn’t this prove that even when people have gone astray, hearing the word read (not interpreted by “volumes in the scriptures”) is sufficient to bring people back into God’s favor?

      • Jacqueline

        David you don’t have to read studies in the scriptures. This site is about letting the witnesses know what went on. Stop and listen for a minute, please. This site is written for a specific group to let them know we are not the witnesses. (If fact the Jewish nation are Jehovah Witnesses, Rutherford hijacked this name). The Bible has survived many centuries and satisfied lovers of God and kept hope alive. It is enough, that is true. If you just want to read the bible and discuss Br. Peter has shown you that he uses the bible to answer you. He and others on here are able to let the bible talk, there is no push on you or anybody else to read the studies in the scriptures or any other books as far as that is concerned. This site is working for so many we can’t change it if it helps. Thank you for listening. Jacqueline

        • David Fuhrmann

          I learned a painful lesson at the hands of the Jehovah’s Witness religion. I was too young to understand or use my brain, when my parents began taking me to the kingdom hall at age 3-4. I feel I wasted a lot of years, believing, trusting, and following JW teachings. It took me many years to unlearn the many false ideas and doctrines I was taught for those 25+ years too….

          It all could have been avoided, if people (like my parents or myself) had believed and followed the direction that is given at Deut 4:2 or Deut 12:32 “Do not add or take away from what is written”

          The Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons and others have ignored this counsel, they label their “added writings” with clever names like “study aids” but look at the crooked road it has lead them down. I say this as a word of caution, not to be mean. I am sure whatever authors you may trust, have good intentions, but that doesn’t justify one defying what God clearly said we should not do.

          • Jacqueline

            David it’s often said that hindsight is 20/20. All that you say about avoidance is true, but the past is gone but the future can be affected by our experiences. There are far worst experiences in this world and we have as humans have learned to deal with it. I agree that no writings are above the scriptures. I read Josephus writing and others from that time because I wasn’t there. Br. Russell put hand to pen and I am glad he wrote. I am glad other holy writings are available and now I have the freedom to read them. I do have to tell my experience with a study using the 1st volume (the cliff note version). I never knew what page this brother was on as he walked thru the Bible and the Bible only. “One” of the best ways I believe to understand the bible is to break it down in topics and no one can remember so we have words and books and computers.
            When you come out of an authoritarian religion or a country with such a government and you escape, you are forever changed and will never let yourself get in that situation again. We have to recognize one element here that many forget about, it is the POWER OF GOD as manifest with the “helper”. Jesus said where we assemble he is there.
            I don’t really worry about others and their walk with God during this time because Jesus is getting his government members together from all areas of Babylon. People in general don’t really care but religious people do and he is doing this phase of the work.
            I appreciate your loving cautionary words about following the creeds of men. I don’t find the Bible Student group that I associate with that way. I have come to love them and feel a part of their association. These people accepted me and I was in pitiful shape. Even guiding me in to my first meeting and yet they had no idea who I was. Had never seen me nor talked to me. I saw the convention advertised. They made me feel confortable when I told them God sent me here for my prayer was so specific and I had told a few people and it was exact down to the minute detail. I thought God wouldn’t answer such a prayer but I knew he did it many times in the scriptures.
            So David you seem to have the fortitude to take a beating and still you keep on ticking. Your first words twice was “I still love God”, it stuck with me.
            Take Care Jacqueline.
            PS: Matt 7:20 “By their fruits you will know these men”. Knowledge is not the identifying mark one should look for. Love among them is.

  • Keepha

    @David Fuhrmann YAHWEH is always the central focus, even bowing down before our Master and Messiah is to the GLORY OF THE FATHER(Philippians 2:11).Jesus is YAHWEH’s supreme agent and only Divine sacred service is given to YAHWEH ALONE.( Revelation 15:4)

    • David Fuhrmann

      Thank you everyone for your comments…….here is what I NOW believe. There are currently over 30,000 (christian) denominations, which all read the same bible books, and have widely differing views about God. Why is that???

      If you’ll read Romans 13:1-7 (written by Paul) you will find direction, which tells us to be in subjection to government, because God has established them over us. Many people reading this passage come away from it thinking that they should obey government, NO MATTER WHAT decision their government might make. Scripture tells us that God is not a God of confusion. However, this passage written by Paul, has the potential to misguide and mislead mass numbers of people. Acts 5:29 (concisely)states that “we must obey God as ruler, rather than men” This is simple, straight forward direction, it never changes or has an expiration date! Why didn’t Paul just say it this way? If you’ll notice, Paul doesn’t even teach this as an option in this passage.

      I’ve discovered numerous places where Paul disagreed with Jesus and established scripture, I will now offer you just one such example.

      At Genesis 7:1 God calls Noah a “righteous” man.
      At Genesis 15:6 God also calls Abraham a “righteous” man.
      King David acknowledges having met many “righteous” people (Psalms 37:25)
      Luke 1:5-6 states that there was a priest (Zechariah) and his wife (Elizabeth) who were “righteous” AND kept ALL the commandment and ordinances of God.
      Jesus acknowledges that many “righteous” men have walked this earth. (Matt 13:17 and Matt 13:49)

      HOWEVER, Paul disagrees with God and 4000 years of established scripture when he states at Romans 3:10 that “no one is righteous”

      Now here is something even more interesting….if your bible has a cross-reference, you will notice that Psalms 14:3 cross-referances with Romans 3:10. If you ONLY read Psalms 14:3 it would appear that Paul has spoken correctly. However it is important to read things in context. If you start with the first verse of Psalms 14, you will notice who David is addressing. David is talking about ONLY atheist. (“The fool has said in his heart there is no God”) Well of course, an “atheist” who doesn’t believe in God is “unrighteous” So it’s clear that David wasn’t saying ALL people are unrighteous or that there are “no one righteous” upon the entire earth……David was ONLY saying those who don’t believe in God (the atheist) are not righteous.

      However, this is not the same idea Paul was seeking to promote. Paul wanted to portray that there are no righteous person living upon the earth. Paul has misrepresented David’s statement and spoken contrary to established scripture.

      What I have just shown you is a lot to absorb in just one day. I will leave you to meditate and research this topic more deeply, if you wish.

      This is but one example of where Paul, teaches contrary to Jesus and established scripture…….I’d be happy to show you other examples in the future, if you wish to see and examine them.

      David

      • Peter K. (admin)

        David Fuhrmann – Thanks for sharing what you believe. Now if you are correct, then the conclusion to draw is that the Bible is not inspired and that it is full of contradictions. I recently mentioned to one of our visitor’s on this website the “we find what we are looking for.” If you are seeking to find contradiction in the Bible you will find it. On this other hand, if you have faith and trust in God’s Word, you will seek further and find the answers that show that the Bible does not contradict itself.

        A few years ago, a young brother was having doubts about the Bible. He copied and pasted about 50 Bible contradictions from Atheist websites to prove that the Bible was not inspired and could not be trusted. It is very easy to find these arguments on the Internet to disprove the Bible. It is just as easy to find other websites where logical answers and explanations are presented. Well, I think I kept responding to each point until about 3:00 am in the morning and sent my responses to him. He was satisfied that He had given up too easily and I could see that there were actually other underlying issues causing his doubt biased him against the Bible.

        Now David, you say you believe in God. Do you believe in the Bible is the Word of God? … the inspired Word of God?

        In Romans 13, Paul says that we should obey government, however, he never says, “NO MATTER WHAT decision the government might make.” We recall that Daniel was so obedient to the laws of the Persia, that His enemies could find no fault in him (Daniel 6:4) until they made a law saying no one could be worshiped but the king . Same with the three Hebrews who would not bow down to the image (Daniel 3:12) . Even Jesus indicated we should pay taxes to the government (Matt 22:20-22). So you see David, all of the Bible is consistent in teaching us to obey the laws of the Land, the exception being when they contradict the commands of God.

        You said, “Acts 5:29 (concisely) states that “we must obey God as ruler, rather than men”” This was Peter’s response to the religious rulers who forbade him from preaching the Gospel. Peter was not advocating breaking any laws, however Jesus commanded the disciples to preach the Gospel (Matt 28:19-20).

        Paul was not contradicting the Bible by saying that “no one is righteous,” when the Bible actually calls various people righteous. You are taking Paul out of context. Read the whole book of Romans. No one is righteous by the perfect standard of the Law of Moses. (Romans 3:20) All fall short (Romans 3:23) and die in Adam (Romans 5:12). Hence Jesus was needed as a Ransom, to redeem Adam his posterity from sin. However, many have been righteous or “Reckoned” as if they were righteous in God’s sight by faith (Romans 3:28). Even though the faithful people of the Old Testament were never actually righteous, they were reckondly righteous in God’s sight.

        Romans 4:3 (NKJV) “For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

        So here, Paul clearly states that Abraham was righteous.

        David, it would have taken very little effort for you to have read further and found the answer for yourself. As long as you keep looking for contradictions in the Bible, you will keep finding them. I encourage you to look for harmony and the real answers.

        • David Fuhrmann

          I still believe in God…..In fact, I believe in Him more strongly than I ever did the 25 years as a JW.

          Is the (whole) bible really inspired, as we’ve all been taught? If so which bible are we talking about? The Catholic bible has a few more books than the Protestant bible, and about 30 years ago some feminist got together and published a bible that changed the gender of God from male to female. Their bible got published and you can still order one off the internet. Not all three of these bibles, can be 100% correct, when they each contain different information. (I believe)God has the power, he could easily destroy any version that isn’t 100% pure, but obviously he has chosen NOT to. After seeing what the feminist did, it occurred to me, that anyone could write something, add it to existing bible books and successfully get it published. However, just because someone is able to get their letter published alongside established scripture, does not make the entire volume “inspired by God”

          I do not believe Paul’s writings are inspired, I believe the Catholic Church merely inserted them alongside established scripture. There are just too many areas where Paul teaches things which are contrary to Jesus.

          Jesus told two separate churches in the book of Revelation that it was wrong to eat food sacrificed to idols. (Revelation 2:14 and Revelation 2:20) It was seen as such a serious matter that Jesus additionally said he would kill their children if they didn’t stop and repent. (vs 21-23) However, Paul states that eating food sacrificed to idols is permissible. (1Cor 8:1-8)

          Jesus strictly tells his disciples not to let others prescribe titles, such as leader, teacher or Father. (Matt 23:9) However Paul puts this very idea in people’s minds when he shows them it’s alright with him if they view him as their Father. (1Cor 4:15)

          Scripture makes it pretty clear that it’s our behavior (works) that determine whether we are “righteous” or not. (read Ezekiel 18:5-18) This passage CLEARLY shows that it is by our “deeds” that we are judged righteous or unrighteous. Paul is WRONG to propose that it is by mere faith. Furthermore, James corrects Paul on this very issue that Paul brought up regarding Abraham. James states that it is due to works/deeds that God judges us righteous. (James 2:24)

          Paul’s whole theory that sin is inherited is false. If such was true, how do you explain Zechariah being able to keep ALL the commandments and ordinances of God? (See Luke 1:5-6) Zechariah lived in the days of Jesus…..that’s 4000 years after Adam and Eve sinned. If sin was “inherited” (as Paul claims) this would have been an impossible feat! Sure we are all tempted, but it is possible to keep the laws of God if you really set your mind to it.

          God wouldn’t have bothered to give the Law if such wasn’t possible…..

          • Peter K. (admin)

            David – I have a couple of articles that you might find interesting:
            1) How to Choose a Bible Translation
            2) The Historic Journey of God’s Written Word

            I think where you and I disagree is you look at the Bible as black and white. If you look at it that way, then yes, it is a book of contradictions from cover to cover. However, when you take passages in context and understand when symbols apply, and that different verses sometimes look at different perspectives of the same topic, then it all falls into place and harmonizes.

            Paul wrote more of the New Testament than any of the other Apostles. If Paul was not a valid Apostle with inspired writings, why didn’t the other Apostles warn the brethren about Paul? On the contrary, the other Apostles received Paul (Acts 15:4) and called him “beloved” (Acts 15:26).

            Luke wrote the book of Acts. In the account of Ananias’s encounter with Paul we read how Ananias feared Paul, and rightly so. But notice what the Lord Jesus said to Ananias to settle his fear. (Act 9:15-16)
            (Act 9:15) But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of Mine, to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel;
            (Act 9:16) for I will show him how much he must suffer for My name’s sake.”

            With Jesus’ endorsement of Paul, let’s have faith that we can find harmony with Paul’s writings and the rest of the Bible.

            FOOD SACRIFICED TO IDOLS

            Revelation 2-3 follows seven consecutive periods of Church history from the Early Church to the time of Christ’s second presence. The references you cite apply to the third (Thyatira) and fourth (Pergamos) churches. This covers the period of the rise of Papacy to civil government authority and the Dark Ages. During this period the true doctrines (meat) were corrupted with false doctrines (i.e. Hell, Trinity and Immortality of the Soul). The meat offered to idols was an ideal symbol to show how the truth of the Bible had been corrupted by the false church system (the Papacy) with erroneous or corrupted doctrines. Rev 2:14 & 20 is not to be taken literally and hence does not contradict Paul’s advice. Note that Paul advised they not eat meat offered to idols if anyone’s conscience would be compromised.

            Romans 14:21 It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak.

            CALL NO ONE FATHER

            Matthew 23
            1  Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to His disciples,
            2 saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.
            6 “They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues,
            7 “greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called by men, `Rabbi, Rabbi.’
            8 “But you, do not be called `Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren.
            9 “Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.
            10 “And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ.
            11 “But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.

            Notice that Jesus also said, don’t call anyone “teacher.” Jesus was encouraging a spirit of humility and accepting him as their Rabbi and teacher and God as their Father.

            However, we have all had teachers at School and we all have fathers and mothers as parents. Jesus, has really talking about an official office, position or title of Father, Rabbi and Teacher.

            1 Tim 5:1 (NKJV) “Do not sharply rebuke an older man, but rather appeal to him as a father, to the younger men as brothers”

            1 Thess 2:7 (NKJV) “But we proved to be gentle among you, as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children.”

            Paul is not describing offices or titles. He is describing roles we can play in nurturing and supporting each other as brethren.

            JUSTIFIED BY FAITH OR WORKS

            Paul and all the Apostles understood that we are justified by many things, including faith, works, grace, etc. You are creating contradiction where none exists.

            James 2:24 (NKJV) “You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.”

            So James agreed with Paul that justification is by faith. However he added the element of works.

            SIN INHERITED?

            Titus 1:7 “For an elder must be blameless”

            So Paul too talked about being blameless. However that does not mean sinless. You are taking verses out of context.

            Genesis 2:16-17 “And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;
            17 “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

            Genesis 3:17-19 “17  Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, `You shall not eat of it’: “Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat of it All the days of your life.
            18 Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field.
            19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return.”

            So it seems pretty clear that Adam died as a consequence of sinning. If we did not inherit Adam’s sin, how then do you explain the fact that we all die?

          • Jacqueline

            David, you don’t have to answer me as the conversation is flowing between you and Br. Peter. Your sincerity is coming thru with your first words each time “I still believe in God”. Yes, you do and you have read the bible like you said. There is a need to identify your “enemy” (for lack of a better word). Is it really Paul? Is it really the Bible? Is it really God? Healing comes only if one identifies the culprit that have caused them to lose faith or confidence in the word of God. Could it be some men have so misrepresented themselves as God’s agents and have failed, and this is causing you to place the blame on the word of God. I say this not to accuse but to ask, for I see so much sincerity in your tone. I couldn’t have ever answered with the knowledge of the scriptures like Br. Peter but I do see behind words, expressions and between the lines. (yes,there is a lot between lines.) So carry on with this great discussion (I am learning with you) but try to nail the perpetrator and let Br. Peter help you. Tell us what happened.
            Your fellow in Christ, Jacqueline

          • David Fuhrmann

            Peter and Jacqueline, I simply don’t believe like You both do (anymore)….I used to, but (now) I don’t.

            Jesus NEVER said to quit keeping the OT Law. He could have easily explained to his disciples that once he died, they were free from the Law, but he NEVER did or even hinted this as true.

            The abandonment of OT law, and following the teachings of Paul, have not served to make this world a better place. The OT Law did however, teach and train people to live righteously and HOW to “love your neighbor as yourself” The days of King David and Solomon were (likely) the closest God’s people have ever been to living a “righteous life” It was the application of OT Law that got them there.

            I am not here to argue. (I believe) God is most pleased with those who do their utmost to keep all His Laws.

            Peter, to answer your last question, we all die because after Adam sinned, God set the time of man at 120 years. We die because God has limited the number of our days to 120 years. That is not the samething as saying sin is inherited and therefore we die. Sin is not inherited (only Paul teaches this mistruth). If sin were inherited, that would mean that I couldn’t but help sinning just as my ancestors did. If my dad committed murder, then that would be my destiny also. Ezekiel 18:14 debunks such false reasoning. All of Ezekiel 18:5-18 shows that we choose our own paths, and that the sins of our ancestors aren’t something we inherit.

            Like I said earlier, I am not here to argue. Zechariah, a man living 4000 years after Adam, proved that anyone, (if they wish and so choose) can keep ALL the commandments and ordinances of God. I am thoroughly convinced that Paul was a liar and a false apostle.

            • Jacqueline

              David, I respect your right to draw from the scriptures what you see. That’s the beauty of having freedom and liberty that Christ gave. I have learned not to get so uptight over persons having views that are just their own and not along regular accepted thinking. (ie inherited imperfection and sin). And that’s okay. I am convinced that armageddom is when Jesus will take over rulership of the earth and then make sure all mankind understands the bible and any other new things. It is my belief that at that time it will matter if you understand and accept what Jesus under his rulership says. It has been proven that man can’t get it right without God.
              But isn’t it nice to hear what each other think from the same Bible passages. For me when I first got freedom to think after leaving the JW org, I was like a 2-3yr old, I had my own thoughts because I could stand and walk without assistants, after all I was nearly 3yrs old!. Now I am older 6-8yrs and realize others can have a valid view, I view what I believe Dan 12 was talking about; The internet; cell phone quick transmission of thought; youtube of new discoveries on biblical issues. Other men and women view on biblical issues. It has made me well rounded I feel. It travels fast and around the globe to connect all persons soon.
              So we invite you to stay with us here, maybe as you look at conversations and articles you might have a view or you may get what you can and move on.
              But we do like to know your story of why you left, it helps others David and it is here to encourage and something others can continue to read over.
              Could you tell us your story please, 25yrs, wow! Do you have others still JW? What caused you to exit? Thank you and take care. In Christian love Jacqueline

              • David Fuhrmann

                Alright, since you’ve asked, this is the (readers digest condensed version) of what happened to me……

                I was attending a congregation in Naples, Florida where a man who struggled with depression, was accidentally prescribed some lithium, had an extremely bad reaction to it, and as a result shot his 6yr old daughter, killing her. The local elders said they understood this was an accident, however they later decided to disfellowship him anyway, to distance themselves from (possible) public criticism. (If someone in the public territory might say, hey wasn’t that the man who killed his daughter a member of your JW church?)

                One elder, who’s wife was a big known gossip, was running the whole family down in car groups when they met for field service. I felt that was very wrong….I also felt it proper to address this and put a stop to it. I followed the Matt 18:15-17 process, but the elders were unwilling to follow through with the last step as the scriptures set forth. I finally told them that if they wouldn’t publicly reprove her, then I would. I took a cardboard sign with me to the Thursday night meeting and set it next to my briefcase for any who wished to read. When the elders saw it they told me to put it away. I told them that I would not. They started to reach for it and I pulled out my cell phone and told them i would call the police if they so much as put a finger on me….that the sign was my personal property. I told them they had the opportunity to do something about it, and until they did this sign was going to stay right where it was. They went back to the back room, had. a quick meeting and called the police themselves, issuing a restraining and no trespassing order to get me out of the building. They were so concerned about any negative publicity, so I told them I’d be back on Sunday (with a bigger 4X8 sheet of plywood all painted up, that the whole town could see) and just sit across the street from the Kingdom Hall (just outside the 500 ft boundary of the restraining order) I never actually followed through on that but I made them think I could/would. On Saturday night we invited a few couples from the congregation over and when they arrived I had this 4X8 sheet of plywood out in the driveway, and was painting it. I explained to them all what had happened and why I was taking this action. I knew word would travel fast, right back to the elders, which was exactly what I wanted to happen. To make a long story short they disfellowshipped me about 3 weeks later. I did hear that after I left, some of the elders were removed, because the scandal of it all was just too big to sweep under the carpet.

                During this process I contacted the society in Brooklyn NY. I had taped telephone conversations, which proved my accusations, which I offered to send them. They declined, not wanting to have or accept this evidence…..
                That’s when I finally realized they weren’t the kind of people/organization that pursued “truth” that believed in “setting right the oppressor” (Isaiah 1:17)

                When I left, I never looked back…..I was D-O-N-E!

                • Jacqueline

                  What a burden for the brother that went thru the experience of losing a child and subsequently DF’d. What courage; to speak up against an elder’s wife or a pioneer is committing suicide. And field service with a pioneer or elders wife in the car means all private and personal gossip will get out. So it is universal it seems.
                  The organization is the problem, the hierarchy will Df a person to distance itself when as a Christian and a friend they should stand by them. The governing body and the ones that got your letter (and mine) often will not respond even if they have a video. It is not about God, Jesus, scripture nor right or wrong or justice. It is about the reputation and keeping up appearances of a group of men that have people paying their bills and keeping them like kings. Your story, except for a few nougats (the signs) is along the lines of why most witnesses leave. They come to realize these men are self appointed (no one votes them in) rulers over an organization and people that believe they are vicars of Christ kingdom on earth. Welcome David Fuhrmann and thanks for sharing. It helps to know that all over many are coming to the same realization without colluding together. I wrote the society a 6 page letter, had a court transcript and won a restraining order against them so they couldn’t retaliate against me for helping pedophile victims. they ignored it and sent an apostasy committee after me, but the local brothers knew me better than them and dropped it.
                  It is really evidence to me that “Yahweh” and “Yeshua” ( see I am ok with that) see something good in us and are calling us out and each time it exposes them before all.
                  How all this will turn out, I guess we all have to wait and see. But I am so free and finding the Bible Students have calmed my heart and I now have persons that love to discuss the Bible and let it speak. That have no organization ruling over each personal life and dwelling in peace with one another. Restraining orders not necessary here.
                  Thanks for sharing and you are welcome here. Peace Jacqueline

          • David Fuhrmann

            Peter, all the objections you presented back to me are worth being addressed. In fact, I have on previous occasions examined all these points you have brought up. Unfortunately, I do not have the time to sit down and respond to each and every point you have asked. As I mentioned before, I have read the bible cover to cover 40+ times…….you’re points are things I’ve already contemplated and found to be lacking in view of other more powerful evidence.

            If you would like to be pleasantly surprised and enlightened I encourage you to visit this site and test all that you read there. You seem intelligent, and if you are sincere, I am quite confident you will be shocked at what you learn there.

            http://www.judaismvschristianity.com/JWObook.htm

            The home page link (at bottom of their page) answers each and every point you offered to me…….and much more. Please let me know what you think after you’ve begun reading some of it….

    • David Fuhrmann

      I believe “Yahweh”, is (likely) a more correct name for God (instead of Jehovah).

      I believe that “Yeshua” (improperly called Jesus by many) was who appeared to Moses in the burning bush, knew Abraham, is also the “angel of the Lord” mentioned at Exodus 23:20-23 who lead Israel, gave them the Law, then later appeared in human form to the 12 disciples. He is our “shepherd” and the one king Solomon said the wise sayings (of the Law) came from. (Ecc 12:11)

      Yeshua/Jesus, having been the one that delivered the 613 laws to Moses, could rightly say that he was “Lord of the Sabbath”.

      • Dupin

        Actually, David,

        There is little evidence along linguistic lines to favor Yahweh, Yawoh, Yehowim or Yehowah or any of a number of alternatives. I favor Jehovah for two reasons, one is that a number of compound name such as Jehonadab, Jehu, Jehoichim and others are pointed with the e’o and a in some cases scheme. The consonant “v” in the name is acceptable for one of the two pronunciation schemes for modern Hebrew pronounces the “waw” as a “v” and is considered the more ancient one.

        My second reason is that Jehovah is the anglicized form of the name just as Jesus is, though it has little resemblance to the Hebrew Yehoshuah, which also preserves the reading of God’s name which I favor. God permitted his name to take the various pronunciations it has in various languages. So I see no reason not to use what he permitted. The important thing is to know it and the God behind his chosen name.

        I have other reasons I won’t outline here. But I will say that if you believe that is the correct form of the name and that somehow you are obliged to use it I have no problem with you following your conscience in the manner just as I follow mine. This is one item God left enough obscurity that we have no sure guide.

  • David Fuhrmann

    I grew up a Jehovah’s Witness, but after having read the bible cover to cover about 40 times, I don’t really believe that there is any church that teaches everything right.

    I still believe in God, but after all I’ve learned, I no longer fit in anywhere. I am wondering if there is anyone out there that feels the same as I do? If so drop me an email at david_fuhrmann@aol.com

    • Anonymous

      David Fuhrmann, I too grew up as a JW and I’ve come to believe what you have….”that there isn’t a church that teaches everything right”. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that the JW’s teaching really doesn’t match what the new testament teaches….the Bible from Matthew to Revelation is all about Jesus(not that Jehovah is not the almighty)which makes sense,after all, Jehovah did make him king for awhile and at the end of Jesus reign he will turn the kingdom “BACK OVER TO” Jehovah.The teachings of the JW’s is almost alien compared to ” Bible gospel”.

    • Jacqueline

      David Fuhrmann, I too don’t believe that anyone have all the answers as they are revealed progressively. The point where you are, I was once. It is the point where you exhale ask God and Jesus to give you faith, throw you a lifeline, give you hope.
      We would like to help David, tell us a little about yourself, please. Just talk. David God judges the heart, not knowledge or works, it isn’t necessary to know completely his divine plan, it will happen whether we understand fully or not.
      One thing we are sure of is that it is for our benefit and good that Jesus was sent to offer us hope. Read or listen to Psalms, to David’s pleadings and you will get a sense that although God called him his friend, he also felt hopeless sometimes.
      Actually David that might not be a bad thing, because it is on HIM that you have fallen and not on your own understanding of scripture. Can you come on our Wednesday night studies? Also, let’s just talk on here for a while and let us know what is on your mind. I will pray tonight for you and look for a reply tomorrow. You take care of yourself, In Jesus dear Name, Jacqueline

      “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not gaze about, for I am your God; I will make you strong; yea, I will help you; yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of My righteousness.” — Isaiah 41:10, Green’s Literal

  • Keepha

    @Ron Harris I will have to say that I agree with you. Your comments are thought provoking. I will add there are still progressive steps one must take to ensure that his Biblical studies are keeping him from religious error and bias, but a major start is admitting when we are wrong and have been deceived by those who claim to love us, and then moving on to ensure that we have fully grasped the truth with our whole heart. This is all I kind write for now. More later. Peace to you and everyone.

  • If soemone who speak the Crotian language or languages from the countries of the Ex Yugoslavia want to read this wonderful booklet please visit us on http://www.istrazivaciBiblijeuHrvatskoj.com

  • max

    To Jerome;

    Thank you for your comments. First let it be known that two different men in England discovered the 2,500 years. And I believe the second one put it at 1914. I think the Millerite movement also had the 2,500. But I believe they were a 100 years off on chronolgy.

    Where you lose me on your argument of not having teachers is in many places. Moses left instructions for parents to teach their children. Joshua was told to read it in an untone way eveyday.

    Why did Paul warn Timothy in his first letter? And note right away at verse three. “that you might command certain ones not to teach a different doctrine.” Jerome, if nobody taught it would have said. Only Jesus is your teacher.

    And when you say something about white lillys, and God is not partial. Because in the beginning with Russell there were more whites. Let me remind you, Acts 2:42,”And they continued devoting themselves to the teachings of the apostles.” Yes people were used because the Greek Scriptures did not exist.

    Also only fleshly Jews were getting the truth, did that make God impartial? No, read Acts chapter 10.

    And I am caucasuan, and just had two blacks stay at my home for over two weeks. What ever your hang up is, try and get over it.

  • This publication entitled “Pastor Russell Founded The Bible Students Not Jehovah Witnesses” attempts to show how different these two organizations are and that Charles Taze Russell did not “found” Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    I find the publication is a play on words, names, titles, etc. For example, the publication states I one section:

    “Of course, Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t believe Jesus died on a cross but rather on an upright stake. Many Jehovah’s Witnesses consider wearing this cross and crown emblem as idol worship, which certainly disqualifies them as Pastor Russell’s Bible Students.”

    Wait a minute! This is a statement that places the cart before the horse. One does not just conclude a matter in this way. Just stating that Jehovah’s Witnesses today “consider wearing this cross and crown emblem as idol worship, which certainly disqualifies them as Pastor Russell’s Bible Students” does not mean that those who were and are known as Jehovah’s Witnesses today were not ever Pastor Russell’s Bible Students. I assure you many JWs today – especially the older ones – believe they were.

    Sounds to me like the International Bible Students seek to take ownership of Charles Taze Russell as their own; disclaiming him of founding The Watch Tower organization as it stands today. It is NOT the name, it is what it is on the inside. The fact of the matter is that both the International Bible Students and the Watch Tower are “children” of Charles Taze Russell. What we see today with the two organizations is that they had a schism and went in two different directions, but it can be plainly seen that they are “siblings” to each other and have a lot in common. Both sprang from the “same household.” One can also see “sibling rivalry” between the two of them. Fighting each other like feuding brother and sister. How Christ-like is that?

    Yet, both have their roots in Charles Taze Russell. Put another way: Their root is in a man, not in Christ. (If the Bible Students wish to claim that JWs were founded by Rutherford, then that is what they chose to believe. That does not make it the truth). This is what many within these organizations refuse to see. They revere men and the organization itself, and not the Christ as Teacher, Lord, Head, and Messiah.

    It was Russell who brought with him the 1914 teaching when he left the Second Adventist movement. Both JWs and Bible Students believe in this date.

    The fact of the matter is that neither International Bible Students, Jehovah’s Witnesses or any other so-called Christian organization are to be “students” of anyone or anything other than Christ himself. If Pastor Russell is said to have “Bible Students” then he must be the teacher. Jesus says that we are to be his disciples (taught by him) and he says we have only one teacher: Himself. (Matthew 23:8 and Matthew 8:31-32)

    I longer argue this point with persons; I just state what Jesus said about it. Any argument one presents of humans and organizations taking on the role as Teacher is – as far as I am concerned – is a not listening to Christ and men doing as they please. Christ, The Son of God, is my teacher, not an organization, not Charles Taze Russell, and not a book called by men, the Bible.

    Anyone leading others to join them in the dysfunction of becoming “students” of other humans and even objects (a book) defy God and His Christ by not listening to them. (Luke 9:35)

    In the publication in question, I counted Charles Taze Russell’s name mentioned 85 times. Jesus is mentioned 10 times. Most curious.

    The Watch Tower revere “The Organization” (of men) and the Bible Students revere Charles Taze Russell.

    Both have no direct attachment to the “person” of Christ as they are supposed to in placing him above man and organization.

    That both the Bible Students and Watch Tower bicker over men (Charles Taze Russell, the Organization and the Governing Body) and consume massive amounts of time doing so, tells me where their hearts are and were their hearts are not.

    The focus is on men. It is men who are being “championed” and not Christ.

    When Russell is mentioned 85 times and Jesus 10 in an article, it shows whose ones heart is with.

    I question the integrity of both organizations in their beginnings with regard their racial make-up and silence with the treatment of African Americans in that era. Both organizations were “lily white.” I even remember a time past in Kingdom Halls were they were “segregated.” Blacks were not allowed to sit with Whites.

    Even old photographs of Russell and those “congregated” about him, one never sees Black people. Yet, Jehovah – I know and believe – is an impartial God.

    Even to this day, the leadership in these organizations is “disproportionate” with regards people of color.

    There is something wrong with this and no one can convince me that this God and Christs way. This is all of men and you mock the One True God in “selling” men and organizations to the world as Teachers.

    And, for those of you who cry “racist” I say to you “foul ball.” It is convenient for you to cloud the truth with such expressions.

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Jerome – You keep saying how important it is to focus on Jesus, not on a man, yet you keep talking about Brother Russell. Let me respond to your charges of racism from Brother Russell.

      At the onset, it is of interest to note that during the Pastor’s life time, when he was constantly being attacked and vilified, racism was NOT among the accusations.

      To be classified as a racist would be especially disheartening to a man, who all of his life preached liberty to the captives. His theme throughout his ministry was the Ransom Sacrifice of Christ, to be followed by the Restitution of all things lost in Adam. (Acts 3:19-21) This was applicable to ALL, not for white people only. And for those who accept Christ now, regardless of their race, the Pastor was fond of quoting Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”

      Brother Russell’s ministry was at a time called “Reconstruction” following the Civil War. Although slavery had technically ended, sadly there was still great prejudice against black people. Even in light of these terribly racist times, Brother Russell wrote, “We have not the slightest of race prejudice, and … we love the colored brethren with just the same warmth of heart that we love the white.”
      Reprints, “The Volunteer Work,” April 15, 1900, p. 2618

      One account of the work in Africa is recorded for us in the February 1907 issue of the Watch Tower, where the Pastor stated, “We will be glad to cooperate according to our judgment of the Lord’s will with any, either whites or blacks, who desire to engage in this section of the harvest field… In various parts of our country Berean Bible Study classes have already been started amongst the colored friends. Indeed, of a number of these dear brethren we could surely say that, in rightly dividing the Word and clearly presenting it to others, very few amongst the whites will be found their superiors. We could also say of them that, so far as their knowledge goes, their standard of integrity and morality seems to be equally high with them as with the white brethren.”

      In light of the racial prejudice of his time, Brother Russell went out of his way to promote his view that black people were equal to white people. No doubt, this caused him to loose converts among racist Christians, however he stood strong in supporting human rights, liberty and equality among the Lord’s people, regardless of race.

    • Jacqueline

      Jerome, I would like to print a few words taken from a letter from Raymond Franz who was done in just like you and all of us that were a part of the JW corporation, maybe they will have some meaning or maybe not but I will put them here for others also to contemplate. In a spirit of brotherly love I post them.

      “I am sure you appreciate the need for patience during a time of transition. I feel that there is no experience that cannot bring some benefit, if we’re willing to work to that end. Some of those experiences we characterize as negative and unpleasant can often teach more than those we view as pleasurable. At the same time that does not excuse from responsibility those who contributed to our making decisions that we would probably not have made had we not been misinformed. It was probably the rather cavalier, insensitive spirit so often manifest in Governing Body discussions that most disturbed me.
      Life inevitably has its negative aspects, but we can deal with these as they require and then put them behind us. The past may be beyond our changing, but the present and the future are things we can work with, focus on. If we let resentment or bitterness control us then we are, as one scholar put it, “prisoners of the past.” When we find the power to put the past to rest, we set a prisoner free-and we have been that prisoner. To do otherwise is to live with frustration and reminds one of Paul’s statement about “beating the air.” (1 Corinthians 9:26) There is a great source of happiness and peace in putting our focus on positive matters. As the apostle puts it: Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy or praise, think about these things. (Phillipians 4:8)
      Life has its seasons and each difficult season that we weather strengthens us for the future. Life is also a journey and we cannot make progress in it if our focus is mainly on where we have been; that could lead to emotional inertia or even entropy. What is done is done. The journey inevitably contains challenge, but we can find encouragement in knowing that we are moving on, making at least some progress, and can feel confident that what is ahead can be fulfilling.” In Him, Jacqueline

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