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Beyond the Watchtower

Looking to our Past for lessons to help inform our Future

Our new logo of the original Watchtower cross and crown supports our subtitle “Looking to our Past – For lessons about our Future.  Find more out the Watchtower history of the cross and crown by clicking here:

WHY THE NAME CHANGE FROM “FRIENDS OF JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES” TO “BEYOND THE WATCHTOWER?” New redirected website address is  —  BeyondWatchtower.com.

First an introduction: We are Bible Students who since the early Watchtower days have continued to meet together in congregations around the world.  We retain, continue to study, and offer to others, the original Watchtower writings and literature, which we enjoy as wonderful resources to help understand and harmonize the Bible’s teachings.  Some of us created the “Friends of Jehovah’s Witnesses” website in an attempt to reach out in the spirit of Christian love and friendship, both to struggling Jehovah’s Witnesses and to Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses, 

Why are we reaching out?

A. We hope to provide a safe haven website of help, support, encouragement, open conversation and as well an information center.

B.  We hope to provide for your consideration, the enduring, valued, spiritual light of truth that shone forth so brightly in the early days of the Watchtower ministry.  In the spirit of Christian love and liberty, we extend to you this invitation to study, not with an autocratic ORGANIZATION controlled by a “Governing Body,” but rather with fellow Christian students of the Bible in the spirit of the Berean’s (Acts 17:11).

C. We hope to share with you areas of our common roots and the true history and the original mission of the early Watchtower Society. In its early days, it operated as a publishing house.  It had absolutely NO authority over any of the hundreds of independent congregations which were controlled solely by the congregation members themselves; not by domineering elders, overbearing overseers or a dictatorial Governing Body.  In those days each elder could only remain in office if at the annual elections they received 75% of the vote from the Holy Spirit anointed congregation members voting based on the Biblical qualifications for elder (1 Tim 3 and Titus 1).

So why the name change to “Beyond the Watchtower.”

Some visitors to our site have had the mistaken impression that by calling ourselves “Friends of Jehovah’s Witnesses” that this meant we were in agreement with the new doctrines and the oppressive and controlling spirit of the organization itself and its governing structure as well as its historical practice of shunning questioning members, and the resultant dividing of families. Dear brothers and sisters, nothing could be further from our true heart’s desire. These types of practices were never to be found among the original Watchtower friends prior to 1917.

Our new name “Beyond the Watchtower” contains a dual meaning which helps clarify our mission:

1: To help, support and encourage present JWs looking BEYOND todays Watchtower or else former JWs AFTER leaving the JW Organization. We would like to provide the type of support as shared in A & B above, to help those presently questioning or struggling with their relationship in the J.W. Organization and who may even have endured and suffered from spiritual and emotional wounds.

2: As described in C above, to provide an accurate historical account of events that took place BEYOND or AFTER the early Watchtower” days when a new organization emerged under new leadership, dramatically changing its beliefs and practices.

In these early Watchtower days, many of the original Bible Students refused to accept the new and changed teachings.  Nor would they be controlled by and surrender their Christian liberty to this new and very tough leader, Joseph Rutherford.  These Bible Students broke away from the new and emerging JW organization and either maintained or reestablished Bible Student congregation’s worldwide.  By 1931, 75% of the Original Bible Students had left this new organization which in that year adopted the name “Jehovah’s Witnesses” in order to draw a clear line of distinction from those who had left the Society and those who remained.

The Bible Students as a Christian fellowship still meet together to the present day as free and independent congregations retaining their original beliefs and practicing the same spirit of Christian liberty as was adhered to during the early Watchtower days up through October of 1916 when Brother Russell died.

With these true, loving and encouraging wishes for you, we hope that this website aids you, our visiting brothers and sisters, to find satisfying answers to questions you may have. We hope this site can be an educational, healing center, a safe harbor for achieving a healthy emotional state, a place for spiritual growth in a manner that faithfully follows the scriptures and a place where all of our combined efforts will be found pleasing and honoring to the name of Jehovah, our loving and merciful Heavenly Father.

We hope that a journey with you to the not so distant past will bring you fresh hopes of Jehovah’s kindness and mercy to us today as well as for the bright and wonderful tomorrow that He has promised for all mankind through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

We continue now with our original WELCOME message below.

1Jo 4:18  There is no fear in love, but perfect love throws fear outside, because fear exercises a restraint.  Indeed, he that is under fear has not been made perfect in love. – NWT


Acts 17:10, 11: Immediately by night the brothers sent both Paul and Silas out to Be-roe’a, and these, upon arriving, went into the synagogue of the Jews.  Now the latter  were more noble-minded than those in Thes-sa-lo-ni’ca, for they received the word with the greatest eagerness of mind, carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so. – NWT

You are anonymous here.  You can speak to other Jehovah’s Witnesses, former Jehovah’s Witnesses, Bible Students and other Christians. When posting your comments, you will be able to use a Pen Name.  Your e-mail address and website info are completely optional. No one can identify you.  No one can report you.  You have a home and quiet place to pray and honestly investigate scriptures.  It is not our purpose to indoctrinate you, but merely to provide you with resources for further study of Jehovah’s word.  You are not alone.  You have friends.

Romans 14:4  Who are you to judge the house servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for Jehovah can make him stand. – NWT

2 Tim 1:7  (Amplified Bible) –  For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but He has given us a spirit of power and of love and of calm {and} well–balanced mind {and} discipline {and} self–control.

Gal 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.   NKJV

Gal 5:13 – For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.  NKJV

2Co 3:17 –  …where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.   NWT

John 8:31, 32 – And so Jesus went on to say to the Jews that had believed him: “If YOU remain in my word, YOU are really my disciples, and YOU will know the truth, and the truth will set YOU free.  NWT

If 1 John 4:8 says “God is love,” then shouldn’t love, not fear, be our motivation to serve Jehovah?  Are you serving Jehovah in a certain way because you are afraid/fearful of being destroyed in Armageddon?

Hebrews 13:6 (Amplified Bible) – So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently and boldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?

459 comments to Welcome

  • heckle&jeckle

    please help me find a study group i dont want them to know where i am i have my email in the email box .in a secure place i’ll relay that. i know they’ll say i’m an apostate.

    • Jacqueline

      heckle&jeckle I have patients now but we got you here. Also come on tonite!! All kinds of ex witnesses and current elders etc will be on hook up. The pre-show begins at 6pm and we all sort of just say hello’s and talk then, the real show begins Jim Parkinson is on tonite.
      Look on this site for announcement. 712.432-8710 #9925 is pin code, star 1 will unmute you. Since the web people don’t even use consonants, we understand you.

  • Claudia

    Hi Anonymous2 (heckle&jeckle) – I’m glad you found truth and encouragement on this website – that is exactly it’s purpose. We thank the Lord for leading you here and for giving you true peace.
    Keep seeking Him, he will not disappoint. Rom. 5:1-5 Phillips translation:

    Rom. 5:1 SINCE then it is by faith that we are justified, let us grasp the fact that we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
    2 Through him we have confidently entered into this new relationship of grace, and here we take our stand, in happy certainty of the glorious things he has for us in the future.
    3 This doesn’t mean, of course, that we have only a hope of future joys—we can be full of joy here and now even in our trials and troubles.
    4 These very things will give us patient endurance; this in turn will develop a mature character, and a character of this sort produces a steady hope,
    5 a hope that will never disappoint us. Already we have the love of God flooding through our hearts by the Holy Spirit given to us.

  • heckle&jeckle

    i truely love you guys i found peace true jehovah praise jehovah

  • heckle&jeckle

    i post last nite 3 times as anonomous. jacqueline you called me anonomous2.i have always wanted a relationship with god . i have been afraid that they were right for so long .afraid cause some of what they say sounds true.but so many things i learned on my own told me otherwise.i mean it is hard to explain indoctrination. on so many levels i was afraid .these statements tell me and ask me so many profound questions. you having been where i am probably know intuatively what i am saying.when i tried coming back to jw i was told i was bipolar .mind control i believed it for a minute , figuretively. but after i suffered thru disfellowshipping and reinstatement and more gossip spread about me . i started to observe i took stalk in all my experiences when i was in the clicks at the hall and when i was out. i’ve been observe and trying and succeeding to think what would jesus do. i fall short obviuosly, and i don’t mean to sound like them but i know my sins for df were minor; the kind of stuff you’d expect of a kid that wanted love in all the wrong place no job skills only a high school diploma , no confidence. my stepmom hated me as a child in front of other jw’s she pretend to be great one elder told me she is the perfect example of a christian wife. meanwhile she in private she said demeaning things to me she made it clear that she thought me an 8 year old boy was favor to much by my mom, sometimes she blamed on my looks in front of others she had a way of humiliating me and making it my fault . as i got older it changed a little but i suppose it depends on her mood they spread rumors about my finances then they act like they defend me sometimes my real mom is not like that.her kids got away with murder.i could go on and on. but why i have gone to a meeting in months but i have thought theses thoughts for years. its just now they have finally coallested into this i have finally at 36 stood up to my father and stepmom. he used to punch me and kick me shake us gritting his teeth violently screaming at the top of his lungs he choaked me a few of times most witnesses thought i deserved this or they think i exaggerated it or imagined it some saw some of it. he put so many holes in the walls at the house. they think i havent moved on with the past i have i forgive all the time . but time and again they start out nce they little by little they start their stuff again. i told him a year ago i said i talked to my doctor i’m not bipolar at all please dont spread that rumor to anyone anymore!there are so many witnesses diagnosing them selves with all these things . yes bipolar exists but a human is not a robot we were designed to feel happiness sorrow anger etc . its how you handle it . i am happy everyday once i learned some life skills which they never taught me i know it had to be jehovah helping i’ve prayed alot. things got better i went to college stepmom said iwould fail i had straight a’s

    • Jacqueline

      Heckle and Jeckle,
      Those are magpies, fun-n-ny. I will put my answer to you on the ask Jacqueline page, because you have touched something that has never been touched on in this forum. Will be back late afternoon. Jacqueline

      • heckle&jeckle

        hopefully my point got across i really should proof read my writing 3 or 4 spots could be taken wrong forgot a no or not some periods and commas oh well . its not about me right .and maybe someday i’ll have help writing my memoirs! heehee!

  • Color Me Blown Away

    A Matter of Love?

    It has recently come to my attention that a brother who had been disfellowshipped and later re-instated has once again been axed. Of course the nature of the original offense was unknown to most other than the elders.

    It is my assumption that the current disfellowshipping is due to a repeat of that issue. As I was told by another this, now former, young brother was so hurt by this action on the part of the judicial committee that he is so turned off by what has happened to him that he no longer wishes to have any association with the “Christian” Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. He has no desire to ever return. That is breaking the hearts of his sister and parents.

    It seems, as a matter of perspective, that after falling back into whatever his sin is (?) that he approached the elders willingly not attempting to hide the issue but in order to seek help and consul from them.

    Rather than help him and offer him spiritual and biblical consul they, at a later date simply informed him that he was to be disfellowshipped once again. No further discussion requested by them. Granted there are some things which are clearly serious “sin” but when someone has “issues,” which seems to be the case, as this young man is seeking professional psych help is it not the responsibility of those taking the lead in the congregation to offer love and help to that individual?

    It makes me sad that this organization is so legalistic that they miss the entire point of LOVE! Am I missing something here? Did I not understand the example of Christ? Is the governing body of Jehovah’s Witnesses running off the tracks? Have these particular elders simply failed to follow Watch Tower guidelines? Is Christian Love no longer a part of the dogma of the Watch Tower Society? Is true Christianity about mercy and the individual and his relationship with God and his Son or not? Any thoughts on this issue?

    Color Me Blown Away

    • Jacqueline

      Dear Color Me Blown Away,Welcome My Brother,
      I understand everything you are saying. The majority of us are at a convention this Jan.1,2011. But we as well as BS not at the convention will answer you later. Please, however read the article on disfellowshipping on this site in the meantime. I brought some of the very things you are talking about to the BS Elders. See how the Bible’s view on disfellowshipping is understood in lite of scripture. I have seen exactly what you are referring to over and over again. It is abuse of power and abusive. I will let the BS Elders chime in from here.
      In Fear of God. Jacqueline

  • Claudia

    Hi Kevin,

    We are really glad you “happened” unto this site and you appreciate it.
    If I can ask, what is it about Bro. Russell’s vision that you appreciate the most? Did you read any of his writings?

    May the Lord continue to guide you,


    • Jacqueline

      Kevin, Welcome,
      Witness for over 60yrs, same feeling as you. Bible Students also have phone hook-up Bible Scripture discussions. I like finding the BS. We thought they were gone. Enjoy the site!
      In Christian Freedom,
      Sis. Jacqueline

  • Kevin Berry

    I just happened upon this site. I stopped going out in service four years ago, and the meetings just a little over a year ago, yet I still feel my spiritual need. The problem for me is Jehovahs Witnesses teach so many things I agree with, yet policy in practice I cannot. It’s so nice to see the gaps filled in by those who remain faithful to Brother Russell’s vision.

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Brother Kevin – We are happy to welcome you to our website. There are thousands of Bible Students worldwide that retain the vision of the early Watchtower from the days of Brother Russell. We believe in personal freedom and liberty in Christ and that each Christian is accountable directly to Jesus Christ, not an organization or religious denomination that set rules and standards not imposed in the Bible.

      Mark 7:6-9 says, And He said to them, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ‘THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME. BUT IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.’ Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men. He was also saying to them, You are experts at setting aside the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition.

      You can find many Bible Student websites under “Friends Links” on the right panel. There is even a link to find Bible Student conventions.

      God bless you and I hope you will avail yourself of the many study resources Bible Students make available to lovers of Jehovah and Jesus Christ everywhere.

  • Jacqueline

    Hi Angel, Good to hear from you.
    If I understand correctly you have your first talk on Ministry School on January 6th. You also are going over your questions for baptism, correct?
    It is always joy when one turns to Jehovah and the Bible. But don’t feel bad remember Jesus said if you ask anything in my name, I will do it. John 14:14
    All of us wish you the best. Since you have experienced much in your life, you now know how to think for yourself and don’t be so unsure of yourself, Jesus said ” Come to me all you who are toiling and loaded down and I will refresh you.Take my yoke upon you, For my yoke is kindly and my load is light. Matt.11:28-30 Remember Jesus died for us so we can get forgiveness of our sins, no matter how bad. To Israel he said: “Come now you people and let us set matters straight between us” says Jehovah. “Though the sins of you people prove to be scarlet, they will be made white like snow…….Isa. 1:18
    Come back and let us know how your journey is progressing. We are brothers in Christ.
    Sincerely, Sis. Jacqueline

  • TRANSLATION: Hello, My name is Angel 28 years of Veracruz Mexico, Del circuit 21, this is my first post, I’m glad you read them all, I met Lord from an early age but at 16 I turned from him.: T_T: . Almost My life would lead to another kind of life, I started making poems and verses which became songs, I started singing in clubs and events coast of Veracruz and I loved it because I started to record songs with a production company music, I loved the money, forget the Lord was full of all the good things of little learning …. it .. I already preaching at the age of 8 years, and even speeches student, but I was never baptized as I walk away slowly to stop attending meetings at 16 because I had absorbed the world, the world is wonderful at the beginning and that as the Scripture says (Satan becomes an angel of light to deceive) Thanks to a brother seraph Name Ministerial servant, where I was working in the same company if I was reading the newspaper text until I did soften my heart , in April 2009 attended the commemoration of our King Jesus Christ and from that day eh no longer attend one reunion, and I am grateful to Lord that is that he is ready to forgive our mistakes, because, vivi surrounded by women and false false hopes and false friends, thanks to the LORD my way of life is improving although I find it very difficult for me, failure and mistakes sometimes … but I ask the Lord to forgive me heart and I feel a relief in my heart … Sometimes I feel empty .. But the Lord always to cheer, thanks to the LORD on Thursday January 6, 2011 to spend my first student speech based on 2 Chronicles 30:13-22 Choose Women forget the fame and money, and take the decision to serve Lord, but I have fear of failing, I will not fail him strength so I ask that my life is not easy …. you have to turn my life forever and dramatically for the better … but either way … will serve our merciful creator .. I hope to be baptized if life gives me that time … I am retiring because I’m preparing for my reunion and I am reviewing reviewing the Ministry and the book (Come be my follower ..) See you and do not forget the words of our great God in Proverbs 27:11 (The Wise Son and rejoice Mio My heart .. So you can respond to this challenge with me “Scorn” ..)
    be wise .. insensatoz not like Adam and Eve .. I hope someday to have my heart Clean … .: T_T:. Much love you … .: T_T:.

    Hola,Mi nombre es Angel De 28 años De Veracruz Mexico, Del circuito 21, Este es Mi primer Post,Me alegro de leerlos a todos ustedes,conoci a Jehova desde pequeño pero a Los 16 Años Me aleje de el, .:T_T:. Practicamente Mi vida la dirigiria a otro tipo de vida, empeze a hacer poemas y versos el cual los converti en canciones, empeze a cantar en antros y eventos de las costas de Veracruz me encantaba hacerlo y pues empeze a grabar canciones con Una compañia de producciones Musicales, me encantaba el dinero, estaba olvidandome de jehova por completo de todo lo bueno que de pequeño aprendi…. pues.. yo ya predicaba a la edad de 8 años,y hasta discursos estudiantiles, pero nunca fui bautizado pues me aleje poco a poco hasta dejar de asistir a las reuniones a los 16 años ya el mundo me habia absorvido,El Mundo es maravilloso al principio ya que como lo dice las escrituras (Satanas se convierte en angel de luz para engañarnos) Gracias a un hermano de Nombre serafin un siervo Ministerial, el trabajaba donde yo, en la misma empresa siempre me leia el texto diario hasta que me hizo ablandar mi corazon, en abril del 2009 asisti a la conmemoracion de nuestro rey jesuscristo y desde ese dia no eh dejado de asistir a una sola reunion,y me siento muy agradecido con Jehova por que se que el esta preparado para perdonar nuestros errores, ya que, vivi rodeado de mujeres y falsos amigos esperanzas vanas y falsas,Gracias a jehova mi modo de vida esta mejorando aunque se me hace muy dificil para mi, a veces fallo y erro… pero le pido a jehova que me perdone de corazon y siento un alivio en mi interior… a veces me siento vacio.. pero jehova siempre esta para animarme, Gracias a jehova el jueves 6 de enero del 2011 pasare mi primer discurso estudiantil basado en 2 de Cronicas 30:13-22 Opte por olvidarme de la fama Mujeres y el dinero, y tome la decision de servirle a jehova, aunque tengo miedo de fallarle, no quiero fallarle por eso le pido fortaleza por que mi vida no es facil….mi vida tiene que girar drasticamente por siempre y para bien… pero sea como sea… le servire a nuestro misericordioso creador.. espero bautizarme si el me presta vida para ese entonces… me retiro por que me estoy preparando para mi reunion y estoy repasando repasando el Ministerio y el libro (Ven se mi Seguidor..) Nos vemos y no olvidemos las palabras de Nuestro maravilloso dios en Proverbios 27:11 (Se sabio Hijo Mio y regocija Mi corazon..Para que pueda responder al que me esta desafiando con “Escarnio”..)
    seamos sabios.. y no insensatoz como eva y adan.. espero algun dia tener mi corazon Limpio… .:T_T:. Los amo Mucho… .:T_T:.

  • Claudia

    Hello Alexandra – Welcome 🙂

    It is indeed wonderful to have Jehovah’s Word in this dark world – to give us hope and and to show us the way to the Father thru Jesus (the way, the truth, the life):
    Joh 14:5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; how know we the way?
    Joh 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no one cometh unto the Father, but by me.
    Joh 14:7 If ye had known me, ye would have known my Father also: from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

    And we rejoice that all those that are today in the dark world will have the opportunity in the Kingdom to learn about Jesus and to accept Him as their Saviour and to live forever.

    Were you able to read some of the posts/articles on this website – anything of interest? We hope you will find truth, inspiration and encouragement for your Christian life. Please let us know what you think.

    In Christian love,

    ~~~~~~~Translation/Traducere ~~~~~~

    Bun venit Alexandra 🙂

    E intr-adevar minunat sa avem cuvantul lui Iehova in aceasta lume intunecata – sa ne dea speranta si sa ne arate calea catre Tatal prin Isus (calea, adevarul, viata):
    Joh 14:5 „Doamne”, I-a zis Toma, „nu ştim unde Te duci; cum putem să ştim calea într’acolo?”
    Joh 14:6 Isus i-a zis: „Eu sînt calea, adevărul şi viaţa. Nimeni nu vine la Tatăl decît prin Mine.
    Joh 14:7 Dacă m’aţi fi cunoscut pe Mine, aţi fi cunoscut şi pe Tatăl Meu. Şi deacum încolo Îl veţi cunoaşte; şi L-aţi şi văzut.”

    Si ne bucuram ca toti cei ce traiesc astazi in lumea intunecata vor avea ocazia in Imparatie sa invete despre Isus si sa-l accepte ca Salvatorul lor si astfel sa traiasca vesnic.
    Ai reusit sa citesti comentarii/articole de pe acest website – ce ti s-a parut interesant? Speram ca gasesti adevar, inspiratie si incurajare pentru viata ta Crestina. Spunene ce crezi.

    In iubire Crestina,

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