Regarding Anointed

02/25/12 | Can you explain Acts 2:17? (Do anointed Christians get visions today?)

03/22/12b | (1) When are the anointed retrieved to the sky? (2) Are some anointed live on earth for a thousand years? (3) Should they stay in the camp of Revelation 20:9?

04/07/12c | I’ve sinned so much. Could I really be a son?

04/26/12 | What are the anointed sisters’ role in the congregation? Is the anointed like elders in the congregation?

04/28/12a | Who are you? Does it matter that I have a learning disability?

04/28/12b | If you are unsure about your anointing, doesn’t that mean you are not anointed?

04/30/12 | Does having a mental illness disqualify a person from being anointed?

05/13/12 | Why does the Watchtower depict the anointed as only old people?

05/19/12 | How many people in history have already partaken of the emblems?

09/01/12 | Does anointing need to be validated by baptism or reinstatement if a person has been disfellowshipped? And author’s follow up comment

01/23/13 | Are you sure Daniel will be resurrected to the heaven? I don’t believe I am anointed.

02/15/13 | Visitor torn between the two conflicting visions of eternal life. [Is the heavenly calling supernatural? ]

05/14/13a | Visitor asked how young can a person partake and what if one partakes and they are not anointed.

11/22/13 | Response to a visitor to rejects the heavenly hope.

12/05/13 | The February 15, 2014 Watchtower’s ‘new light’ of a rapture for the Anointed

01/09/14 | What do you think about the number of Memorial partakers in 2013?

03/09/14 | Are those who are not anointed under the authority of the darkness? (WT 1/15/14 - Colossians 1:13)

04/08/14 | Visitor is confused about the 2 classes of anointed Christians as stated in the WT 1/15/14

12/03/14 | Do ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses have the special overwhelming feeling of anointing

12/08/14 | Visitor does not believe Jehovah’s Witnesses have unusual spiritual experiences.

05/12/15c | How are people or a person baptized with the Holy Spirit?

05/16/15 | In QR 5/12/15, are we promising freedom without moral restraint?

09/13/15 | What was the “new light” in the September 2015 JW Broadcast?


♦ Can you explain Acts 2:17? (Do anointed Christians get visions today?)

On February 25, 2012, we received the following comment:    

“What do you think about the visions, has anointed Christians the opportunity to get visions today?  Acts 2:17?  The scripture states:

“‘And in the last days,’ God says, ‘I shall pour out some of my spirit upon every sort of flesh, and your sons and your daughters will prophesy and your young men will see visions and your old men will dream dreams.’” – Acts 2:17

To the author of this inquiry, we want to thank you for submitting this question as we feel this is a subject that may benefit many, especially those who are hesitant about accepting their sonship.  Many such persons believe that anointing grants a person some special abilities, perhaps including visions.  We hope by way of our response to assist those brothers as well as provide a satisfactory answer to your question.  We will start by discussing what anointing is.    

Anointing, also called being ‘baptized in holy spirit’ (Acts 1:4), also called being ‘sealed with a token of the spirit’ (2 Corinthians 1:22), is simply a realization and an awareness that you are a unique son of the Father of All – not a slave, not a servant, not a friend, not a subject. Jesus came to reveal the Father to mankind. The spirit of truth came to reveal the son. (John 16:12-13 By accepting this realization, this gift, Jesus lives through us as we manifest the fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), in the same way as the Father lived through Jesus.  In the fullest of our expression, we can be the exact representation of the Christ!  (John 14:12) Indeed, ambassadors in his stead.    

Though a simple concept, it has been associated with such grandiosity that many humble and unassuming brothers and sisters have shied away from accepting this freely given gift.  They may read the account in Acts and conclude that unless they have these manifestations of the spirit, they cannot be “anointed.”  Let us now dispel this notion.     

The mere realization, or revelation, that you are a son of God is a powerful and liberating idea. It means that “you are enough,” for a human cannot gain a higher station than a son of God.  It reminds us of Jesus admonition to his followers:

“You are the light of the world. A city cannot be hid when situated upon a mountain. People light a lamp to set it, not under a measuring basket, but upon the lampstand, and it shines upon all those in the house.  Likewise let your light shine before men, that they may see your fine works and give glory to your Father who is in the heavens.”
– Matthew 5:14-16

By the time of Jesus arrival, mankind had lived “under a measuring basket,” heads hung low believing themselves to be sinners worthy of death, prostrating and sacrificing until their lights burned out.  Jesus reminded them of their true worth and that all it takes is to remove the measuring basket.  And by his life and death, he demonstrated how to remove it, and then beckoned “follow me.”      

As a free gift, it is not necessary to specifically pray for it.  However, prayer does serve an unparalleled purpose.  Prayer determines the capacity of receptivity by the individual praying believer.  Prayer often digs out larger and deeper channels wherein the divine spirit of truth may flow to the hearts and souls of those who remember to maintain unbroken communion with their Father.  But there is a danger, though slight.    

There exists a vast gulf between the human mind and the divine mind, between man and God.  The human is so largely electrically and chemically controlled, so highly animal-like in our common behavior, so emotional in our ordinary reactions, that it is exceedingly difficult for the spirit to communicate directly with the human mind.      

And, unfortunately, when a spiritually growing human does find it possible to receive a communication or spiritual revelation, the person is often so blinded by the experience that it precipitates a convulsion of fanaticism or initiates some other intellectual upheaval which results disastrously.  The individual may feel he is especially chosen and, as a result, many a new religion and strange "ism" has arisen from the misunderstood communications of the spirit.      

If, when such an experience occurs, the mature spiritual individual understands that the message he or she receives is a normal process for a spirit-oriented soul, they can much better manage the experience.  If it involves visions, likely the vision is for themselves alone and provides an insight into how to better imitate the Christ.      

Rather than starting a new religion, spiritual insight can be utilized to uplift the existing house of believers. There are enough sects of Christianity, but not enough spirit oriented Christians.        

So then, while such spiritual experiences as referred to in Acts 2:17 may occur, it is not necessary in order for a person to be spirit-born.  And if we are blessed with such a divine communication, let us use that insight, not for self-aggrandizement, but to uplift ourselves and our brothers as sons of God and as ambassadors of Christ.



(1) When are the anointed retrieved to the sky? (2) Are some anointed live on earth for a thousand years? (3) Should they stay in the camp of Revelation 20:9?

On March 22, 2012, we received the following inquiry: 

“When are the anointed retrieved to the sky, and are some anointed live on earth for a thousand years. Should they stay in the camp of Revelation 20:9?”

To the author, we thank you for your inquiry.  We elected to separate this question from your previous question today so that we can give each inquiry a fair response.

In this inquiry, you are actually asking three separate and distinct questions.  We will respond to each one separately:

(1) When are the anointed retrieved to the sky?

If you have read our previous responses, you will note that we never provide an answer to a question about when some Biblical or prophetic event will occur.  We simply do not know and we chose not to speculate.  What we can tell you is that if you are faithfully making your calling sure, when that time arrives, you will be on the favorable side of events.

(2) Are some anointed live on earth for a thousand years?

As you know, our belief, based on the Bible, is that all Christians have the heavenly hope.  That would necessarily mean that any Christian on earth during the thousand years referred to in Revelation has that hope and will eventually attain to it.  We are aware that there is some indication that new scrolls will be opened, but we have no idea what those scrolls will say.  However, based on the “scrolls” that we do have, we believe there will always be anointed Christians on earth as a group until they individually attain to their heavenly calling.

 (3) Should they stay in the camp of Revelation 20:9?

The answer to this questions is contained right within the scripture.  It reads:

“And they advanced over the breadth of the earth and encircled the camp of the holy ones and the beloved city. But fire came down out of heaven and devoured them.” 
– Revelation 20:9

While this is clearly prophecy, taking it at face value, if fire comes down from heaven and devoured the enemies, why would the holy ones need to leave?  And given the time when this prophecy is said to be fulfilled, namely “at the end of the thousand years,” why concern yourself with this now.  We must make sure we are doing all we can NOW so that we can even have a future.  Everything else is just theology. Theology will not save you.  The search for truth will.     

We encourage you to focus on your relationship with the Father, your imitation of the Christ, and doing the work of substitute ambassadors. These are the things that will assure your safety, your security, your survival and your everlasting life.      

May you have peace.

♦  I’ve sinned so much. Could I really be a son? 

On April 7, 2012, we received the following inquiry:

“I have had people to tell me I might be of the anointed.  I have sinned so much in my life, how can this be possible?  To be like our great and wonderful teacher Jesus Christ?  Then the holy spirit bring to my heart, “All things are possible with our god Jehovah.”

To the author, we thank you for your candid inquiry.  We agree with you that “with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)  But we suspect many of our brothers share your concerns and allow this issue to be a stumbling block that prevents them from accepting their sonship.  By way of our response, we hope to remove this stumbling block and be of comfort to you and to those who share your concerns.

We believe the best way we can answer this question is to point you to the parable of the prodigal son.  (Luke 15:11-32)  (We discuss this parable in more detail in the article, “Why Are the Older Anointed Reluctant to Recognize the Younger Anointed?”)

Here, the prodigal committed all kinds of debauchery.  When he came to his senses, although he knew he was a son, he felt he was no longer worthy of that status.  He returned to his father and sought only to be a hired man.  But the father would not accept this kind of self-pity and self-denigration from his son.  Neither does YOUR Father accept that attitude from you.

Jesus demonstrated the Father’s love and mercy when he encountered the woman who had been caught in adultery and who was about to be stoned.  After wisely turning away the aggressors, Jesus asked:

“Did no one condemn you?” She said: “No one, sir.” Jesus said: “Neither do I condemn you. Go your way; from now on practice sin no more.” 
– John 8:10-11

And we follow Jesus’ example.  We say to ourselves and to all those who hear us, “sin no more.”  And that’s the end of that.      

We find the problem with mankind in general is that many fail to appreciate the depth of divine forgiveness.  We ask you, how often do you think loving and intelligent parents must forgive their erring offspring?  We think, not too often.  Not because the children do not err.  But because there exists an intimate and understanding relationship between the two that prevent estrangements that necessitate repentance by the child and forgiveness by the parent.      

The parent is able to view the immaturity of the child in the light of the more advanced parental maturity. The child, being immature and lacking in the fuller understanding of the depth of the child-parent relationship, frequently feels a sense of guilty separation from a parent’s full approval.  But a true parent is never conscious of any such separation such that repentance and forgiveness need come into play.     

With the earthly child and the heavenly Father, the divine parent possesses infinite and divine sympathy and capacity for loving understanding.  Divine forgiveness is inevitable; it is inherent and inalienable in God's infinite understanding, in his perfect knowledge of all that concerns the mistaken judgment and erroneous choosing of the child. Divine justice is so eternally fair that it unfailingly embodies understanding mercy. Thus, sin is an experience of creature consciousness; it is not a part of God's consciousness.    

Let’s take this a little further in our dealings with our brothers.  When a wise man understands the inner impulses of his brothers, he will love them.  And when you love your brother, you have already forgiven him. This capacity to understand man's nature and forgive his apparent wrongdoing is Godlike.      

Conversely, our inability or unwillingness to forgive our brothers is the measure of our immaturity, and our failure to attain adult sympathy, understanding, and love.  We hold grudges and nurse vengefulness in direct proportion to our ignorance of the inner nature and true longings of our brothers.  Love is the outworking of the divine and inner urge of life. It is founded on understanding, nurtured by unselfish service, and perfected in wisdom.    

So we need not concern ourselves with the quantity or even the quality of our sins.  When we comprehend the Father’s divine mercy and understanding, we can see that it is only us who holds those past sins against us.  We can then let them go, set them aside and start anew.  That is what being “born again” is all about.      

So, never may we allow our past transgressions to prevent us from accepting our true heritage and entering into the Kingdom of the Heavens. Your challenge, our dear brother or sister, is to forgive yourself. The Father’s work is already done.    

We pray that the spirit of truth will lead you to this realization. 

What are the anointed sisters’ role in the congregation? Is the anointed like elders in the congregation?

On April 26, 2012, we received the following inquiries:

“What are the anointed sisters’ role in the congregation? Is the anointed like elders in the congregation?”

To the author, thank you for your inquiries.  We will assume that when you use the word “congregation,” you are referring to the meetings and meeting places of Jehovah’s Witnesses.  In the Bible, the word often refers to the anointed sons and daughters of the Kingdom of the Heavens – “the congregation of the firstborn who have been enrolled in the heavens” (Hebrews 12:23), the body of Christ (Colossians 1:18, 24).  We will, therefore, answer your question based on our assumption that you are referring to the meeting places.

In response to your first question:  What are the anointed sisters’ role in the congregation?

We direct your attention to the Society’s publication “Reasoning from the Scriptures,” page 432-433, under the section “Should women be ministers?”  Among Jehovah’s Witnesses, this counsel would refer to anointed sisters, as well as sisters who have not yet received their anointing.

One thing we would like to add is that it would be inappropriate for anyone, whether brother or sister, to usurp the authority of the elders during congregation meetings.  There is ample time, outside of the congregation arrangement, where appropriate questions and discussions can take place.

In response to your second question:  Is the anointed like elders in the congregation?

Anointed means that one has received the promised holy spirit, the token in advance of their inheritance as sons and daughters of the Father.  An elder is a servant of the congregation who oversees the conduct of meetings so that all things can take place decently and by arrangement (1 Corinthians 14:40).  So the two are quite different – one is a son, one is a servant.  While it is clearly preferable that all elders receive the anointing and accept their sonship, unfortunately that is not the case.

We hope we have adequately answered your questions.  If not, please feel free to contact us again.

♦  Who are you? Does it matter that I have a learning disability?

On April 28, 2012, we received the following inquiries:     

“What is your name? Are you male or female?  It really doesn’t matter as long as you love Jehovah and keep encouraging your brothers and sister.  I think Jehovah would approve even if the society doesn’t think you should if Jehovah feels the need he will provide. I loved reading your sites there really upbuilding and very Biblical. So please keep inciting to fine works and love dear brothers. I will probably still ask questions in the future. I still have much to learn. I have been in the truth for long time but have a learning disability and it takes me a little time to get the sense of things. Thank you so much for your love and patience with me. Agape Much...Jehovah is our helper.”    

To the author, as always, thank you for your inquires.  Occasionally we receive emails such as yours questioning who we are and the authority for what we do.  Please see below, Response March 11, 2012, Response March 13, 2012, Response March 14, 2012 and Response March 17, 2012.      

While we are associated with the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, we are not members of the Writing Department or the Bethel family.  We are anointed brothers who feel we have a scriptural obligation to provide spiritual assistance to one another to the extent we are able.  And since our anointing is what we know best, we chose to engage in this aspect of our ministry by means of an international website.  We could tell you our names, but of what value would that be to you?  The Society does not tell us the names of the brothers who write the Watchtower articles and publications. Does the fact that we do not know their names detract from the message?  No.  It simply is not relevant.      

As such, we urge you to focus on the message not the messenger.  If the message is not scriptural, discard it.  But if you discard sound scriptural messages because you do not know the messenger, be careful that you do not miss the undeserved kindness of the Father. We will tell you, however, that our group consists of both male and female.  I hope this explanation suffices.    

You mentioned that you have a learning disability.  Please know that your standing with the Father has nothing to do with your intellectual capacity.  Each of us differs in our abilities and talents, but the possibilities for spiritual progress to the Father are equal to all.  Our spiritual growth is achieved quite independently of all social, intellectual and material differences.      

You might enjoy the article on our site about James and Judas Alpheus, the Alpheus Twins* – the twin brothers who were apostles of Jesus.  They were referred to as simple men who did not understand much of what Jesus taught.  Yet they were honored to be chosen among the 12.  When Jesus referred to “the least of these my brothers,” he was specifically referring to these two men.    

In fact, we encourage you to read about all of The Twelve Apostles.* They all had different personalities, yet they were each acceptable to the Christ. Only one of the 12 was lost – Judas Iscariot.  But Jesus did not reject Judas. Judas rejected Jesus. These stories demonstrate the great love, patience and mercy the Father has toward all of us, no matter what personal issues we are dealing with.      

It is not so much our ability that the Father looks at.  It is our intentions, our motives, our desire to love Him and imitate Him in our relations with our brothers.  Our spiritual growth is not so much accomplished by what we do, but by what we strive to do.  The Father remembers we are dust.  (Psalms 103:14)  Recall that the good news of the Kingdom is especially for those among us who are aware of our own weaknesses:

“Jehovah’s spirit is upon me, because he anointed me to declare good news to the poor, he sent me forth to preach a release to the captives and a recovery of sight to the blind, to send the crushed ones away with a release, to preach Jehovah’s acceptable year.” Luke 4:18-19

Having said this, we will also say that we appreciate your kind words and emails you have sent us over these past few weeks. You seem to us to be a loving sister who is striving to be the best you can be.  We believe you demonstrate the power of Jesus’ message that we are ALL children of God.  Once a person realizes that truth, their life is instantly transformed and they earnestly do all they can to make that calling of sonship sure.  (2 Peter 1:10) Thereafter, they truly put forth the effort to become better people – better wives, husbands, fathers, mothers, children, brothers, sisters, employers and employees.      

Through your transformation, others will be drawn to the Father.  You will be acting as an ,Ambassador of the Kingdom,Substituting for Christ by revealing the Father in your own life. This type of transformation is the goal of this site for all of our brothers and sisters.

So, keep the faith and “keep proving what you yourselves are.” (2 Corinthians 13:5)  We wish you the very best.

*These articles have been removed from the site.

♦  If you are unsure about your anointing, doesn’t that mean you are not anointed?

On April 28, 2012, we received the following inquiry:     

“I've heard, if you are unsure then you are not anointed. And as you know you are a man or woman you know if you are anointed.  But is this written in the Bible?”    

To the author, we thank you for your inquiry.  Your question pertains to what you have heard, no doubt from members of the congregation.  We, too, have heard such comments and find them distressing because those who say such things demonstrate that they do not understand the purpose of Jesus’ ministry or his message, notwithstanding that such persons have been Bible readers for several years.    

As a preliminary matter, anointing is a token in advance as a guarantee of our spiritual inheritance. (Ephesians 1:14)  It is a gift given after we recognize and accept our sonship with the God.  (See Response February 23, 2012 and Response April 7, 2012.)  So the real question is: How do we know whether we are sons of God?  And the secondary question is how do we know whether we have been anointed?  

Promoters of ‘what you have heard’ base their comments on the following theory: Just as a man knows he is a man and has always known he was a man, and a woman knows she is a woman and has always known she was a woman; so, a son of God knows that they are a son of God and have always known it. This assumption is incorrect as demonstrated by the experience of the Apostles and first century Christians.    

I doubt that any among us who hold to that ‘theory’ would deny that the Apostles and first century Christians were anointed sons of God.  Yet such theorists would have to admit that before Jesus began his ministry, these early Christians did not know it.  Paul emphasizes this point when he wrote:

“Now I say that as long as the heir is a babe he does not differ at all from a slave, lord of all things though he is, but he is under men in charge and under stewards until the day his father appointed beforehand. Likewise we also, when we were babes, continued enslaved by the elementary things belonging to the world.  But when the full limit of the time arrived, God sent forth his Son, who came to be out of a woman and who came to be under law, that he might release by purchase those under law, that we, in turn, might receive the adoption as sons.  Now because you are sons, God has sent forth the spirit of his Son into our hearts and it cries out: “Abba, Father!”  So, then, you are no longer a slave but a son; and if a son, also an heir through God.”
– Galatians 4:1-7

Clearly, there was a time when these early Christians did not know they were sons of God or that they were anointed.  But at the Father’s appointed time, such ones ‘received the adoption.’  Think about the word “adoption.”  Does that not indicate in itself that prior to the adoption, the person did not consider himself a son?  Let’s go further.  Once they realized they were adopted, they were anointed when ‘God sent forth the spirit into their hearts.’  So, prior to the Father sending the spirit, they had not been anointed.  This one series of scripture should put to rest the erroneous ‘theory.’  However, there are many more scriptural examples.    

Remember the disciples whom Paul encountered in Ephesus:

“In the course of events, while Apollos was in Corinth, Paul went through the inland parts and came down to Ephesus, and found some disciples;  and he said to them: “Did you receive holy spirit when you became believers?” They said to him: “Why, we have never heard whether there is a holy spirit.”  And he said: “In what, then, were you baptized?” They said: “In John’s baptism.”  Paul said: “John baptized with the baptism [in symbol] of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.”  On hearing this, they got baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  And when Paul laid his hands upon them, the holy spirit came upon them, and they began speaking with tongues and prophesying.”
– Acts 19:1-6

And what about the conversion of Saul [later named Paul] himself?  

“But Saul, still breathing threat and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, in order that he might bring bound to Jerusalem any whom he found who belonged to The Way, both men and women.” 
– Acts 9:1-2

At this time, Saul surely did not ‘know’ he was a son of God.  But after his vision on the road to Damascus, and his encounter with the disciple Ananias, he accepted his adoption as a son of God and was anointed:

“So Ananias went off and entered into the house, and he laid his hands upon him and said: “Saul, brother, the Lord, the Jesus that appeared to you on the road over which you were coming, has sent me forth, in order that you may recover sight and be filled with holy spirit.”  And immediately there fell from his eyes what looked like scales, and he recovered sight; and he rose and was baptized, and he took food and gained strength.”
– Acts 9:17-19

Who would question the validity of Paul’s sonship and anointing even though it is undeniable that he did not always know of it?  So, the scriptures are quite clear.  In answer to your final question, no, the ‘theory’ is not written in the Bible.    

Perhaps you can see why we say the ‘theory’ is distressing.  We can see no point in asserting the ‘theory’ other than to discourage our brothers from accepting our adoption and the gift of the spirit, and to ‘shut the door to the Kingdom of the Heavens.’  Woe! to those who engage in that thinking, even as Jesus said:

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because you shut up the kingdom of the heavens before men; for you yourselves do not go in, neither do you permit those on their way in to go in.”
– Matthew 23:13

We hope you are not among those who hold to or promulgate this ‘theory.’  But if you are, we pray that you correct that thinking and do what you can to share the truth about our sonship and anointing with those we are treading on dangerous ground.

Does having a mental illness disqualify a person from being anointed?

On April 30, 2012, we received the following inquiry:

“I read that someone who says they are anointed may have mental illness, and therefore not be true anointed.  It will mean the anointed can not have mental illness? or any anointed may have mental illness? What do you think?”  

To the author, we thank you for your inquiry.  We have also read and heard this comment.  We hope you are not among those holding this view or one who is subject to this view.         

As you no doubt are aware, it has been repeatedly emphasized that whether a person has been anointed is a matter between that person and Jehovah alone.    

“The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children.”
– Romans 8:16

“Now because you are sons, God has sent forth the spirit of his Son into our hearts and it cries out: “Abba, Father!” 
– Ephesians 4:6

“For who among men knows the things of a man except the spirit of man that is in him?”
– 1 Corinthians 2:11

Thus, it would be inappropriate, unloving, unwise, intrusive, and even judgmental to presume that because someone suffers what would be considered a ‘mental illness,’ that they cannot be anointed.      

According to current medical literature, mental illness is a medical condition, often treatable and curable. It is often associated with difficulties in coping with the ordinary demands of human life, and are not related to a person’s character or intelligence. In fact, many otherwise ‘normal’ people suffer from some kind of mental illness at some point in their lives, especially when confronted by stressful conditions such as divorce, death, lengthy unemployment, etc. Imperfections, trials and tribulations are a reality we all must deal with.  

“I returned to see under the sun that the swift do not have the race, nor the mighty ones the battle, nor do the wise also have the food, nor do the understanding ones also have the riches, nor do even those having knowledge have the favor; because time and unforeseen occurrence befall them all.”
– Ecclesiastes 9:11

It further shows a lack of understanding of what the anointing is.  See our Response dated April 28, 2012 about the anointing and learning disabilities.  None of these problems affect or diminish the Father’s love for us and the Christ’s welcoming of us into the Kingdom of the Heavens.    

Now, mental illness and mental disabilities are different matters. The Father’s spirit works with a normal functioning mind.  But when the brain has been affected with a physical abnormality such that a person might be considered mentally handicapped, it might be difficult for such a person to recognize their sonship, to understand the nature of the anointing or even to participate in congregational activities such that their professed anointing even becomes an issue.     

Nevertheless, even to such ones, the scriptures still apply. It is a matter between that person and the Father. Period. We should never shortchange the Father’s ability to understand his children and His willingness ‘to show mercy to those to whom he chooses to show mercy.’ (Romans 9:18)    

The Christian Greek Scriptures are replete with references to the Father’s love toward the afflicted.  And many of them were baptized and received the promised holy spirit.  So, why would we today presume on Jehovah’s mercy?  Why would we even enter into the arena of judging our brother’s hope or standing before God?  What harm is there in allowing persons to serve the Father as their spirit sees fit?    

None of God’s people should have any sharing in shutting up the Kingdom of the Heavens. (Matthew 23:13)    

To the author, if this is a personal issue for you or if you are subject to this type of judging, please feel free to write us with your return email address.  We will be happy to discuss your specific experience in more detail privately and confidentially.


Why does the Watchtower depict the anointed as only old people?

On May 13, 2012, we received the following inquiry:

“I studied the Watchtower for the week, and after I was done I read next week's study. And on page 22 it was only old anointed depicted.  I was sorry and could not attend the meeting. I do not understand why young anointed are not depicted.  But as a consolation, I know that Jesus loves me.  I will quote the truth:  Matthew 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”

As always, we thank the author for posting the inquiry.  We have heard from others who have a similar reaction to the picture.  And we share in that disappointment.  We commented on why we suspect this problem exists in our article Why Are Older Anointed Reluctant to Recognize the Younger Anointed?  If you have not read it, you may wish to.

But whatever the reason, to a child of God, it matters little.  We know who we are because “the spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children.” (Romans 8:16) We do not need the witness of men. While we would love the support of our older brothers, if they withhold their support, they will have to answer for that to the Father.  (Matthew 25:40)

We are hoping, by way of this website, to move the Society to correct this gross error before the Father’s patience is exhausted.  We ask that you stand firm in your hope and not be ashamed of it.  Perhaps your faith will move others to examine their own relationship with the Father and discover they, too, are children of God.  You may find our new series The Cherished Earthly Hope helpful in spreading this good news.

We wish you the very best.

How many people in history have already partaken of the emblems?

On May 19, 2012, we received the following inquiry:

“How many people in history have partaken of the emblems? How many anointed are there now? Have you been counting? When can we know if all the anointed has partaken of their heavenly position with our father?”

To the author, we thank you for posting your questions.  As a general answer to your questions, we direct you to the Apostle Paul’s words:

“You are all, in fact, sons of God through your faith in Christ Jesus.  For all of you who were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor freeman, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one [person] in union with Christ Jesus. Moreover, if you belong to Christ, you are really Abraham’s seed, heirs with reference to a promise.”
– Galatians 3:26-29

Here we are told that ALL who belong to Christ are sons of God.  We gain that privileged relationship through our faith.  There is no distinctions in the Christian congregation such that some are consider slaves and some considered sons. We are ALL Abraham’s seed. When we recognize and have faith in those words, we receive our anointing.    

We know many of our brothers are having trouble with that concept.  They are stuck on the idea that only 144,000 are sons of God and the remaining 7 million of us are only friends of God and subjects of the Kingdom.  We have posted several articles that establish the sonship of every member of the Christian congregation under the section entitled Building Up the Brotherhood.      

And we are finding that our most recent series of articles entitled The Cherished Earthly Hope is having a significant impact on our brothers who are having trouble understanding their sonship.  We encourage you to read that series for further clarification of the hope held out to members of the Christian congregation.    

Really, when we understand the truth that we are ALL sons of God, how can we count the number?  And why count the number?  In truth, the only number that is relevant is the number that are NOT partaking. Those are the ones who need the kingdom message the most.      

Our suggestion is that you not worry about numbers.  Concern yourself with people.  Make it your mission to share the Kingdom message that we are ALL children of God.  That is the good news of the Kingdom.   

We hope we have adequately answered your questions.  If not, please feel free to write again.

Does anointing need to be validated by baptism or reinstatement if a person has been disfellowshipped? And author’s follow up comment

On September 1, 2012, we received the following comment and inquiry.  On September 2, 2012, we received the author’s follow up email which is set forth after our response.

 “How do those who are not part of "the Organization", or who have been disfellowshipped because of legitimate wrongdoing in the past. Does their anointing need to be validated through baptism in the organization, or reinstated back into the congregation? Thanks, Your Brother ”

Thank you for your email.

The first thing we want to tell you is that our anointing is not validated by either baptism, or reinstatement or good standing in a congregation or a church.  Our anointing is only validated by the Spirit of Truth.  As Paul wrote:

"The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children.”
– Romans 8:16

The ‘spirit itself’ is the Spirit of Truth; and ‘our spirit’ is the Father’s indwelling spirit as referred to by Paul: 

“Do you not know that you people are God’s temple, and that the spirit of God dwells in you?”
– 1 Corinthians 3:16

So our anointing is a personal matter between us and the Father, with the witness provided by the Christ (who sent the Spirit of Truth).  No man is authorized to impose on or interfere with that relationship. The Christ stands at the door to the kingdom (John 10:9), not any man.  As Paul said:

“He has also put his seal upon us and has given us the token of what is to come, that is, the spirit, in our hearts.  Now I call upon God as a witness against my own soul that it is to spare you that I have not yet come to Corinth.  Not that we are the masters over your faith, but we are fellow workers for your joy, for it is by your faith that you are standing.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:22-24

However, the Father does authorize individual groups to formulate and enforce their own rules for conduct and behavior, and administer discipline.  

“Truly I say to you men, Whatever things you may bind on earth will be things bound in heaven, and whatever things you may loose on earth will be things loosed in heaven.  Again I truly say to you, If two of you on earth agree concerning anything of importance that they should request, it will take place for them due to my Father in heaven.  For where there are two or three gathered together in my name, there I am in their midst.”
– Matthew 18:18

As one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, we know what the rules are.  When we join the association, we subject ourselves to those rules.  And consequently when we break those rules, we are subject to their discipline. You may want to read the Question and Response, dated July 16, 2012 on this subject.     

So a Jehovah’s Witness who has been disfellowshipped would need to be reinstated if that person wants to continue in association with Jehovah’s Witnesses.  But if such a person chooses another fellowship, he or she would subject themselves to the rules of that other association instead.  Either way, their anointing is not at issue.     

Keep in mind, brother, that our anointing carries with it a responsibility to conduct ourselves in a way that honors the Father and respects our brothers. We are obligated to keep the laws of the Kingdom which cover every sort of wrong that would be offensive to the spirit within us:

“Jesus answered: ‘The first is, “Hear, O Israel, Jehovah our God is one Jehovah, and you must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind and with your whole strength.”  The second is this, “You must love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’”
– Mark 12:29-31

So if we are engaged in conduct that grieves the spirit, we need to pray to the Father about it, change our course, and not look back.    Of course, we certainly understand that if a disfellowshipped person has not been reinstated, yet partakes at the Memorial, the organization will not count that person.  But such a person should not be worried about that.  If their spirit bears witness that they are a son, they are obligated to act in accord with their spirit regardless of what man thinks.    

We hope we have adequately answered your question.  If not, please feel free to write us again.  

On September 2, 2012, we received the following response from the author of the above inquiry:

Thank you so much or you response, it has truly been helpful!  Although deep down I already knew the answer.  I once was associated with a brother in the congregation who was an anointed one from God.  He work feverishly for the Lord.  And he taught me much as I was his friend and companion in the ministry. Humility and love he showed to all. He recently has passed of natural causes, and I will always remember what he has taught me.

I have been DF'd for 9 or 10 years now, struggling with addictions on and off, while making attempts for reinstatement, so far to no avail. I am tired of trying to prove myself before men. Then it was as a light came upon me. A light that has been there all my life, but would never approach it due to some preconceived understanding about who were Christ’s brothers. The love of Christ has been with me all my life, but the flesh has been weak. Drugs and gambling have been my plight, and a prison term my punishment. Thanks be to Jehovah and his Son Jesus Christ who have picked me up every time I have fallen, dust myself and keep trying.

Even now as I write and feel good in the Lord, there is a badness that is crouching at my doors. But recently for the first time in my 49 years of living, it has been a lot easier knowing that I am in no way obliged to be reinstated before men, but look exclusively to my Savior for peace and love and forgiveness, through his precious blood and sacrifice!!

God bless you Brothers and Sisters for helping others to grasp that, that we can be made strong through our weaknesses, and be blessed with "sonship with God", as a brother in Christ.  John 3:16 " For God loved the world so much that he gave his only begotten son, in order that every that (everyone ) who believes unto him, might not be destroyed, but have eternal life." Amen Brothers.


♦  Are you sure Daniel will be resurrected to the heaven? I don’t believe I am anointed.

On January 23, 2013, we received the following comment and inquiry (some of which we reworded for clarification):     

“A previous visitor asked as question [on September 28, 2012], ‘What would you say about the promise made to Daniel, in Daniel 12:13? And as for you yourself, go toward the end; and you will rest, but you will stand up for your lot at the end of the days? Daniel was personally assured of his future resurrection. Where to?’ You answered: ‘Daniel was a faithful servant of God, so we fully expect that he will be resurrected to the heavens.’ WHAT DOES THAT MEANS ?? MAY I ASK WHAT YOU MEAN THAT HE WILL BE IN HEAVEN. Please answer my question on your website.  And not to forget, I want to thank you all for the making of this website.  I'm not one of the anointed, but I enjoy knowing what your current focus is.  But my younger brother is.  He accepted his calling last year and I just turned 19 this year.  This website has helped him a lot.  I know you are indeed helping out your brothers so thanks a lot.  Your sister in the truth.  Thanks again, indeed God is with you.”        

Dear Sister, thank you for visiting our site and posing your question.  We are pleased to know that our site is helping your brother.    

We understand why the answer we provided asserting that Daniel would be resurrected in the heavens is news to many Jehovah’s Witnesses, and possibly even confusing.  But it really is not that complicated.  The only reason there is confusion is because the leadership in our organization has convinced the vast majority of us that only 144,000 will be resurrected to heaven and the remaining billions will be resurrected to earth.  They feel that since Daniel died before Jesus, he could only have a resurrection to the earth.  We strongly disagree with that reasoning.     

We find nothing in all of Jesus’ teachings, or in the teachings of any of the Christian Bible writers that the resurrection of mankind would be on earth.  Many, including our leadership, have attempted to interpret certain verses in the symbolic book of Revelation and have concluded that they must refer to an earthly resurrection.  Such interpretations are shortsighted, presumptuous, and, in direct opposition to what Jesus taught.  It might be helpful if we provide an in-depth discussion of the concept of resurrection.    

To that end, today we published an article entitled The Promised Resurrection which addresses this matter in detail.  You also might want to read the articles What Hope is There for the Dead?  and  What is God’s Purpose for the Earth? After you have had an opportunity to read the article, if you still have questions, please feel free to write us again.    

One other interesting thing you wrote was that you do not believe you are among the anointed who will be going to heaven.  We think you are mistaken.  Every person who is a follower of Christ, will be following him into the heavens.  There is no salvation in any other way as is evident from Jesus’ conversation about the eternal destinies of mankind.  He explained that there were only two destinies: 

“Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who have been blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for YOU from the founding of the world. . . . Then he will say, in turn, to those on his left, ‘Be on your way from me, you who have been cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels. . . And these will depart into everlasting cutting-off, but the righteous ones into everlasting life.”
– Matthew 25:34, 41, 46

Either one will inherit the kingdom, or be destroyed.  There is no middle ground – no other destiny.  Also, ask yourself these questions: Do I belong to the Christ? When I pray, do I refer to God as my Father?  When I pray for direction, am I led by spirit?  If you answer yes to these questions, you are a child of God with the heavenly hope.  Notice these scriptures:

“But he who guarantees that you and we belong to Christ and he who has anointed us is God.  He has also put his seal upon us and has given us the token of what is to come, that is, the spirit, in our hearts.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:21-22

“For all who are led by God’s spirit, these are God’s sons. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery causing fear again, but you received a spirit of adoption as sons, by which spirit we cry out: “Abba, Father!” The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ, provided we suffer together that we may also be glorified together.”
– Romans 8:14-17

We challenge you to find one teaching in the Bible that tells followers of Jesus to pursue everlasting life on earth, or that speaks favorably of anyone who fails to pursue the heavenly hope.  We have not been able to find any such teachings.  Although it is generally accepted in our organization that the majority of us have an ‘earthly hope,’ that teaching is not found anywhere in the Christian writings.      

Take a look at the numerous articles on this site that show the true hope for all Christians, including Who Are Led by Spirit?Moving Forward in FaithHolding Fast to the Sacred Secret, and Foreordained from the Founding of the World Again, if you continue to have questions after you have read these articles, please feel free to write us again.    

We know this information is not in harmony with what the Governing Body currently teaches.  It is our hope and prayer that soon they, too, will see the true light of the good news of the kingdom and correct their course as has often been required of those who seek to please the Father.    

And we wish you and your brother the very best.

♦ Visitor torn between the two conflicting visions of eternal life. [Is the heavenly calling supernatural? ]

On February 15, 2013, we received the following comment:

“Dear Brothers in Christ: I have been a Witness for over 60 years. Like all Witnesses I was taught that my future, if faithful, would be everlasting life on paradise Earth. However, that hope has never entirely satisfied me. I found it too materialistic. We are taught that material things do not bring happiness, yet the New World, as portrayed by the Witnesses, is seen in entirely materialistic terms. Little is said about spiritual values. This year's calendar is an excellent example. On the other hand, I have never received the witness of the Spirit as taught by the Witnesses. I have several friends who are of the anointed, and I talk to them frequently about this subject. It seems that the idea that a person has to receive some kind of supernatural calling is relatively recent. Russell didn't teach it, nor did Rutherford in his early years. Clearly the Bible's hope, especially in the so-called New Testament, is heavenly life. I must admit I am entirely confused. This week's WT study asked the question, "What do you desire for the future?" I wrote in the margin: "To be in God's presence, wherever that may be." I know that you have already written about the "witness of the spirit," but it isn't easy to break with something you have been taught for so many years, and that I myself have taught and preached to others. As I said I am torn between two conflicting visions of eternal life. If you can help me I would be eternally grateful. Yours in Christ Jesus.”

To the author, thank you for your email.  It warms our hearts!  In our opinion, you are not at all torn.  Your handwritten comment in the margin aptly expresses the witness of your spirit, namely, to be in the presence of God. And that, of course, is in the heavens.  Though living 60 years, your handwritten comment exposes your childlike nature in just wanting to be with your Abba, your Father.  Rejoice in that!  We are profoundly moved at your sincere heart’s desire. Welcome to the family, brother!

We wholeheartedly agree with you that the earthly hope is a materialistic hope.  Really, brother, if the ‘sacred secret’ is not heavenly, what is the secret?  Why is it so sacred?  Man long aspired to live on earth. That is not new.  And it takes no spiritual values to be a good and obedient human.  We need only look around us at self-professed atheists and agnostics who are good to their families, their neighbors, even their associates, but have no love for God or his ways.  Remember Jesus’ comments in this regard:

“For if you love those loving you, what reward do you have? Are not also the tax collectors doing the same thing? And if you greet your brothers only, what extraordinary thing are you doing? Are not also the people of the nations doing the same thing?”
– Matthew 5:46-47

We believe you are also correct that the idea that the heavenly hope is a supernatural calling is a relatively recent teaching.  We see nothing in Russell’s writings to indicate as much.  Perhaps that is why many who awaken to their true hope turn to the early writings of Russell to help them realize their hope.      

To us, you do not seem confused at all. Rather than being confused, you are awakening to spirit realities. It is no accident that you reached out to us instead of becoming disgruntled and ‘beating your brothers.’ You are being led by spirit. You are a son! If you have not yet done so, you might want to read Who Are Led By the Spirit?     

Also, do not think that because you have some doubts, you are not a son of God.  Doubt alone can never prevent the realization of your hope.  Honest doubt and sincere questioning is not sin. At worst, they only delay your journey, but they do not end it.  Jesus loves the honest doubter as evidenced by his love and acceptance of the apostle Thomas who carried the nickname “Doubting Thomas.”    

But you do appear to be grieving.  You spent so many years in a false hope and you are having to adjust to the reality that you were not taught the truth about the good news.  We went through the same grieving process.  We consider ourselves fairly intelligent, but still we could not see what was plainly stated in the Christian scriptures.  How we allowed our eyes to be blinded for so long has confounded us.  But it has not defeated us.  As long as there is breath in our bodies, there is the opportunity to turn toward the true hope.  That is one reason why we started this website – to open the eyes of our brothers.  In spite of the fact that the Governing Body continues to teach this error, we have not given up the hope that they, and our local brothers and sisters, are simply misled and will turn to the true hope when they can get past their own shock and grief.     

So our suggestion to you, brother, is to sure up your faith!  You know the true hope.  Accept the plain and open teachings of Jesus and walk in them.  You might find some encouragement in the articles “Am I a Son?” – Conquering Doubt, and Comfort for Those Spiritually Grieving.   Finally, we intend to write an article soon about our status as ‘faith-sons’ and what that means.  Please stay tuned. 

♦  Visitor asked how young can a person partake and what if one partakes and they are not anointed.

On May 14, 2013, we received the following inquiry:

“What happens if you partake the emblems (the wine and the unleavened bread) when your not really an anointed witness?  And at what age does an anointed person feel that the spirit has borne witness in their lives?”

To the author, thank you for your email.  You ask very valid and relevant questions.  We will answer them one at a time.

You asked:  At what age does an anointed person feel that the spirit has borne witness in their lives?

Answer:  When a person ‘feels’ anointed is a personal matter.  It can happen any time.  It can happen at the same age as a person who wants the earthly hope.  If a 12 year old can make a consecration to God with a view to live on earth, then a 12 year old can make a consecration to God with a view to live in heaven.  Please see our article How Can Your Family Be Happy, especially question 4.

And you asked: What happens if you partake the emblems when you’re not really an anointed witness?

Answer:  First, remember the apostles were not anointed at the first Memorial supper.  The spirit was not poured out until Pentecost, after Jesus’ resurrection and ascension.  The real question is what happens if you do not partake.  Notice what Jesus said:

“Accordingly Jesus said to them: “Most truly I say to you, Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in yourselves. He that feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has everlasting life, and I shall resurrect him at the last day.”
– John 6:53-54

Therefore, a young person who feel capable and desirous of ‘disowning himself, picking up his torture stake and continually following Jesus’ (Matthew 16:24) is welcomed, and even commanded to partake of the emblems.

We hope this satisfactorily answers your questions.

♦  Response to a visitor to rejects the heavenly hope.

On November 22, 2013, we received the following disappointing comments:

“After reading your whole site I came to a decision. I will stick even closer to Jehovah and his organization. Thanks for your answers in the past. I was resuming the story about Korah very properly and meditating about it in prayer. I have the earthly hope, that's my desire. Why should it be such a difficult task for Jehovah to help us to transform the earth into a paradise? A power that is beyond every imagination? The creator can't help us restoring the earth into a paradise? That's not the God I believe in. Yes we can! And Jehovah will help us to accomplish this task. May his name be glorified for ever.
“I don't regret it to visit your homepage. I'm determined to strengthen my brothers and sisters more than ever to be careful. And yes, I have been reading the [July 15, 2013 Watchtower] for at least 5 times. It makes to me more sense than your explanations. If I should be an anointed too, why didn't I have the feeling that I'm one? Do I have a shortness of Faith? I don't think so.
“Please answer my question. Why do I don't have the feeling to be an anointed one? Feel free to answer this publicly.”

To the author, thank you for your emails.  They are quite informative and even instructive. We normally would not publish our response to these types of emails because what needs to be said is rather personal.  However, since you wish our response to be made public, we will acquiesce.

Our dear brother, you do not believe you are anointed because the organization has told you that you are not.  And you choose to listen to men than to the Christ.  We know this is true because if the organization published in next month’s Watchtower that all baptized Witnesses are sons of God, you would gladly validate it in your mind, without any special or unique spiritual manifestation, just as you do every time they come out with ‘new light’ or a ‘new understanding,’ no matter how much it deviates from the prior understanding.

What you have done, by your own admission before Jehovah and his mighty angels, is to declare that you choose not to accept Jesus’ offer of sonship. (John 1:12)  You choose not to eat and drink of the Christ. (John 6:53) You choose not to be a part of the Christian congregation which is the body of Christ. (Colossians 1:24) You refuse to be transferred into the kingdom of the son of his love. (Colossians 1:13) You refuse to accept the heavenly abodes he has prepared for you. (John 14:2-3) And you choose loyalty to men rather than loyalty to the Christ. (Matthew 10:37-39)

Your decision to cling to men, an earthly organization and the ‘old wine,’ is sadly taken note of in the entire watchful universe.  This sad response is what the angels had to watch when the nation of Israel rejected Jesus’ offer of sonship with God in the first century.

That being said, we wish you as much peace as you can achieve in the remaining years of your life, and we will continue to hold out hope that some day the true good news of the kingdom will reach your heart.

To our other visitors, this is an example of the minds of so many Jehovah’s Witnesses who have been taught repeatedly to reject the heavenly hope.  How much better and wiser it would have been for this brother to at least be open to the possibility that the Father may have something greater in store for him. As it stands, he has rejected the Father’s foreordained purpose to adopt him as a son. (Ephesians 1:3-5)  And he has rejected the entire message of Christ Jesus.  This is very sobering.

To all those who are not yet sure of your sonship and your heavenly hope, do not give up praying and asking for guidance in this matter.  Remember this admonition of the Apostle Paul:

“Brothers, I do not yet consider myself as having taken hold of it; but one thing is certain: Forgetting the things behind and stretching forward to the things ahead, I am pressing on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God by means of Christ Jesus. Therefore, let those of us who are mature be of this mental attitude, and if you are mentally inclined otherwise in any respect, God will reveal the above attitude to you.”
– Philippians 3:13-15

Keep on asking, keep on seeking, keep on knocking and it will be given to you. (Matthew 7:7-8)  

♦  The February 15, 2014 Watchtower’s ‘new light’ of a rapture for the Anointed

On December 5, 2013, we received the following inquiry:

“I refer to the above magazine-study edition [February 15, 2014]. It states all the Anointed who are alive will be taken up to heaven to be with the Lord PRIOR TO THE START OF ARMAGEDDON.  Yet the Revelation book published 2006 states the Anointed who are alive will survive Armageddon.  Is this new light from the Society? God bless you all for this website.”

To the author, thank you for your email.  We noticed this change in position as well.  It was first mentioned in the October 2012 Annual Meeting notes.  However, we would hardly call it ‘new light.’  New light indicates there has been some enlightenment or enhancement of a prior understanding.  The change you mention is a complete reversal, and an admission that the Governing Body considers their prior understanding to be wrong.

Interestingly, their new, or current, understanding of when the anointed would be taken to heaven is really the equivalent of the teaching of the rapture. The Governing Body may not refer to it as a ‘rapture’ because the teaching is specifically denounced in the book Reasoning From the Scriptures, page 315, published by the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, and in other books and magazine published by them as well.  It is part of their contrarianism and their determination to be different from other Christian sects.  Yet now, for some reason, they claim a rapture for themselves and others whom they consider anointed.  So this change is really a double flip/flop.

This constant need for the Governing Body to make changes in their teachings is strong reason to give pause to placing one’s trust in the interpretations of men, especially as they relate to prophecies and future events.  How much better to have faith in the plain and open teachings of Jesus that all those who accept the heavenly call will be taken to heaven either after their  earthly life is concluded, or in a ‘second’ or group resurrection at the end of an age or ‘last day’ of the current age, as discussed in The Promised Resurrection, and then wait to see how Bible prophecy works itself out.

To all those whose hope is in the Father and His Christ, it does not matter whether all things crash or whether all things gradually change.  Our future hope is secure.  No one can snatch us out of their hands:

“My sheep listen to my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them everlasting life, and they will by no means ever be destroyed, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. What my Father has given me is something greater than all other things, and no one can snatch them out of the hand of the Father. I and the Father are one.”
– John 10:27-30

We hope this adequately answers your question.

♦  What do you think about the number of Memorial partakers in 2013?

On January 9, 2014, we received the following inquiry:

“I have a question. The Yearbook 2014 has been published. What do you think about the numbers of Memorial partakers? It is real? ”

To the author, thank you for your email.  You asked if the number is real.  We believe you are asking whether the number is accurate.  Our answer is NO.

First, we want to make it clear that the number is supposed to reflect those who partook of the Memorial emblems at the gatherings of Jehovah’s Witnesses around the world on March 26, 2013.  It is not a report of the total number of  persons who have accepted the invitation to be anointed as faith sons of God who were living on earth at that time.  Nevertheless, the Governing Body and its operatives have chosen to distort the number to suit their own agenda of promoting a false hope of everlasting life on earth. They are fearful of the growing number of the children of God and they believe that by distorting this number, they will somehow discourage them. A steady growth in the number of Memorial partakers is a threat to their central doctrines.

The number of partakers in 2012, as published in the 2013 Yearbook, was 12,604.  The number of partakers in 2013, as published in the 2014 Yearbook, is 13,204 – an increase of exactly 600.  That fact in itself raises questions about its accuracy.  And we know firsthand and through personal emails that more than 600 new sons of the Kingdom partook with Jehovah’s Witnesses on that night.

According to the report we received, the 2014 Yearbook was delayed because the Governing Body and its operatives were distressed at the large number of partakers that were reported by the congregations.  So they sent inquiries out to selected congregations where more partook than was expected, asking the body of elders to recheck their figures.  They gave them certain criteria to use to decide which partakers were legitimate in their opinion and they were to only report those who the elders believed were genuinely ‘anointed.’  (Our article Defending Our Living Hope gives an account of how one congregation was targeted due to the large number of partakers.) As a result, the reports came in late which delayed the publication of the 2014 Yearbook, and the numbers were significantly reduced. So there was never an intent to truly report the number of partakers, let alone the number of anointed faith sons of God.

What is interesting is that they reported every single attendee, whether they were Christians or not, whether they were ‘mentally unstable’ or not, and whether they even understood the proceedings or not.  They also counted those who were coerced to attend by family members, and those who have been disfellowshipped and disassociated, even though they will not allow anyone to speak to them!  We wonder if they counted the infants being held in their parents’ arms.  Yet, they make it a point to severely scrutinize any who dare to openly confess union with the Christ (Matthew 10:32-33) on the one night we are commanded to do so! (Luke 22:19) We even have reports that in some congregations, the servants refused to pass the emblems to some whom the elders believed wanted to partake!  What a travesty! What an abomination to all that is righteous!

However, the most embarrassing thing is that the Governing Body is admitting that of the over 19 million who attended, only 13,204 of their number have a real relationship with the Father.  This is nothing to boast over.  It is a sad reflection of their impotence and their inability to build a true Christian congregation. (Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:24)

We will have more to say about this matter in our upcoming Memorial articles.  This is an important year for Jehovah’s Witnesses, but not necessarily in a favorable way, as will soon be seen.  It does mark 100 years from their assumption that Christ did not begin ruling as king until 1914.  But that is an insignificant milestone and a very small matter.  The more important issue is that this is the ‘Father’s Acceptable Year’ (Luke 4:18-21) and the ‘time of their being inspected.’ (Luke 19:41-44) So far, they are not discerning this, and it does not look good.  But we shall see.

In the meantime, do not be discouraged by their stubborn and rebellious ways.  The faith sons of God are growing exponentially around the world.  They are no longer looking to ‘this mountain’ or ‘that mountain.’ (John 4:21) They are not misled into believing the cries that ‘here is the Christ’ or ‘there is the Christ.’ (Matthew 24:23)  They are serving with spirit and truth “for the Father is looking for ones like these to worship him.” (John 4:23)  In truth, the actual ‘body of Christ,’ the Christian congregation of those who have accepted their sonship and are actively and knowingly pursuing the heavenly hope worldwide, far exceeds the total number of baptized publishers in the whole Watchtower organization!

Brothers, this is a great time to be alive and to confess union with Christ Jesus.  And it is a special privilege to have a share in the authentic ministry Jesus started.  We encourage all to stay close to the Father and to Christ Jesus and to expect the unexpected!

♦ Are those who are not anointed under the authority of the darkness? (WT 1/15/14 - Colossians 1:13)

On March 9, 2014, we received the following comment:

“According to the January 15, 2014 Watchtower, “However, as in times past, Jehovah remained in control. On the third day, he resurrected his Son, and on the day of Pentecost 33 C.E., Jesus established a spiritual kingdom over the Christian congregation of his anointed brothers. (Col.1:13)” (wt 15/1/2014, page 11, paragraph 17.)  Col. 1:13 says: "He rescued us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son."

“If only "anointed brothers" have been “transferred into the kingdom of his beloved Son" that would logically mean that those who believe they are not of the anointed, even though they are faithful Christians, are still under "the authority of the darkness." A pretty absurd idea don't you think? Doesn't that show how absurd the "two class" theory is?”

To the author, we certainly agree with you. The two-class theory is absurd! And we also agree that those who are not in the spiritual kingdom of anointed Christians, are indeed under the authority of the darkness. Their minds are veiled and that is why they cannot see what is so obvious to you, to us, and to so many others the world over. We further note that when Jesus offered sonship and discussed the pathway to heaven, he was speaking to a multitude, not just his apostles and disciples. (John 1:12)  How much more clearer need the scriptures be?

We lay this blame directly at the feet of the blind guides who call themselves ‘the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses’ who are promoting this gross error and dragging the majority of our brothers into the pit of darkness and non-existence. (Matthew 15:14)

It is only by means of the incorruptible seed of the Father that we can navigate through the valley of decision and arrive at the doors to the kingdom.  But the unholy acts of those who are proving themselves unworthy of partaking with the Christ are being accused, not excused, and they have no shelter to hide over them. They are becoming like cornered animals who choose to fight to the death rather than surrender to the Lamb, the light of the world!  They are going after those who have the work of bearing witness to Jesus. But they will not prevail.

And so, we say to you, as we have said since this year began, expect the unexpected!  The patience of the Most High is quickly running out, but the Father’s loving-kindness is being manifest to all who confess union with His son.

Thank you for your email.

♦ Visitor is confused about the 2 classes of anointed Christians as stated in the WT 1/15/14

On April 8, 2014, we received the following comment and inquiries concerning a January 15, 2014 Watchtower article:

“I cannot seem to get over last Sunday's study article: "Let your Kingdom Come. But When?" 

"We UNDERSTAND that in mentioning 'this generation,' Jesus was referring to two groups of anointed Christians."

“I asked our local elder who is included in the "WE" since obviously I do not consider myself part of the WE who understood it. First of all, never in the stretch of my imagination had I thought that Jesus Christ was referring to 2 anointed Christians. When we were studying the bible back in the mid 80's, there was no mention whatsoever about it. [Watchtower] study articles would always drive the point that the end is near with the remnants of the anointed dwindling in no. (based on decreasing no. of Memorial partakers).    

“If WE truly understood the interpretation, why even some of our elders and Ministerial Servants had to digest and re-digest? Even some of the intellectual ones in our congregation were discussing and figuring out after the [Watchtower] study session. The [Watchtower] could have cited examples to clarify the 2 anointed groups - instead of leaving the idea open to confusion, further explanation and re-interpretation by the brothers.    

“Questions: “Instead of We UNDERSTAND, why the [Watchtower] did not use the past tense UNDERSTOOD since they had already cited similar interpretation in April 15, 2010 edition of the [Watchtower]?   

“Why only after almost a 100 years since 1914 did the [Faithful and Discreet Slave] understood about the 2 anointed groups' significance on "this generation"?    

“As early as 1990s when new [Governing Body] member Mark Sanderson was already considered as anointed, the [Governing Body] could have realized the overlapping thing since substantial facts were already available for their consideration at that time. But it took them another 20 years to finally UNDERSTOOD it. Was the holy spirit not present during the stretch of 20 years to shed light on the [Faithful and Discreet Slave]? Or was the holy spirit really needed for the [Governing Body] to identify the 2 groups and clarify it just this year?    

“Somehow, one would think that with the changes in the members of the [Governing Body], teachings like this are just bound to change.  

“As always, I would appreciate your kind reply and comments on the matter.”    

To the author, thank you for your email.  For the record, the subject article identifies 3 groups of anointed Christians, not 2.  Don’t forget the modern day group that is not included in the 2 groups!! (Sigh)    

Brother, we share your sentiments. But we believe it is a waste of time to try to understand the babel coming out of the Watchtower Society. Their leadership is lost, blind, ignorant and arrogant. This study article unambiguously declares that. They have nothing good to offer anyone in their current state. Rather than being persecuted, they are creating their own tribulation and causing their own destruction.   

It is not lost on us that the Governing Body is taking its most outrageous actions during Memorial season. They direct the congregations to study their foolish interpretations and they institute oppressive, and most likely illegal, financial schemes. Those who are not alert to these machinations submit out of fear and confusion. Others are taking the bait and getting distracted from what is most important – uniting with the Christ in worship of the Father, and serving one another. We think this distraction is intentional.    

We urge our brothers not to be distracted nor allow the foolishness of the Governing Body to dampen your spirit.  You are free sons who have no obligation these men.  You have no responsibility to explain their convoluted teachings. And there is no requirement that you assent to their financial schemes.         

It appears to us that they are desperate ‘knowing they have a short period of time.’ Therefore, our suggestion to you, and to anyone who asks, is to ‘flee from her,’ ‘shake the dust off your feet’ and ‘let the dead bury the dead.’ Open your eyes, regain your spiritual balance, reclaim your self-dignity, and exercise your God-given freedoms.  The solution is always the same – obey God as ruler rather than men, and you will prosper. 

♦  Do ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses have the special overwhelming feeling of anointing

On December 3, 2014, we received the following comment and inquiry:

“The [Jehovah’s Witness] anointed have a special overwhelming feeling when they think of heaven and Jesus. That feeling of home. If you are an ex-[Jehovah’s Witness] anointed, do you have that feeling still? PS, I know the [Governing Body] don’t have special insight.” 

To the author, thank you for your email.  You are apparently new to our site as we have written on this subject many times. See Questions and Response subheading “Anointed”, especially Question and Response 2/25/12)

We often hear from certain “anointed ones” that they had some special super-spiritual experience that confirmed to them they were of the elite “anointed class.” And we have heard others say, as you do, that the anointed have some unique feeling about being in heaven. As a result, most Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that unless one has a supernatural confirmation, they cannot have the heavenly hope. The Watchtower Society promotes this idea in support of their agenda, which we will discuss below.  But first, let’s talk about what the anointing is.

Anointing does not have anything to do with being one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, active or inactive, current or former. The anointing is really just an awakening – a realization of who we already are in our relationship to the Father:

“Now I say that as long as the heir is a young child, he is no different from a slave, although he is the lord of all things, but he is under supervisors and stewards until the day set ahead of time by his father. Likewise, we too, when we were children, were enslaved by the elementary things of the world. But when the full limit of the time arrived, God sent his Son, who was born of a woman and who was under law, that he might release by purchase those under law, so that we might receive the adoption as sons. Now because you are sons, God has sent the spirit of his Son into our hearts, and it cries out: “Abba, Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a son; and if a son, then you are also an heir through God.”
– Galatians 4:1-4

It is simply a quickening in our own spirit caused by the operation of the spirit of truth that confirms we are sons and heirs to the heavenly kingdom:

The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs—heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ—provided we suffer together so that we may also be glorified together.”
– Romans 8:16-17 

That awakening may be accompanied by an emotional release in some persons, but not in all, and it varies from person to person. But this emotional release is a reaction to the realization of sonship, not a validation that is required in order to give the anointing legitimacy.    

The anointing causes every God-loving individual to long to be with their Father in heaven. It is natural and authentic, not magical or mystical. Those who have awakened from the sleep of their animal nature chose to be baptized into Jesus death and to become sharers with Christ by eating and drinking of him through the Memorial emblems. And in accepting that path in life, they have an excelling peace. (Philippians 4:7)    

True anointed sons know that the “Doctrine of 144,000" is a manmade doctrine that has no support in scripture.  We wrote about this in articles such as, The Great Crowd of PartakersWho Are Led By the Spirit?, Hold Fast to the Sacred Secret, and Moving Forward in Faith. The fact is that every true lover of God has the heavenly hope. Neither Jesus or the Apostles ever spoke about any eternal destiny other than being in heaven. Check for yourself.  Remember the parable of the sheep and the goat. (Matthew 25:31-46) Which group lives forever on earth? Neither. One goes to heaven, the other goes to everlasting death. In the parable of the wheat and the weeds (Matthew 13:24-30), which group stays in the field?  Neither. One goes to the Father’s storehouse (heaven), the other gets destroyed. There is no middle ground.        

The Watchtower organization continues to promote the silly ideas of supernatural manifestations for the sole purpose of discouraging our brothers and sisters from following Christ Jesus and accepting the one hope he held out to all of being faith sons of God with a heavenly destiny. (John 1:12) The Governing Body and the Writing Department want to mystify and confound the meaning of being “anointed with spirit” in hopes that our brothers and sisters will be too confused and too scared to accept the hope for themselves. Sadly, this machination has worked for many, many years. But it is slowly changing.     

We know of hundreds of Jehovah’s Witnesses who once believed they were part of an elite class of 144,000, who now know that all their brothers have the same hope.  They have dropped their elitists views and have settled into a natural, authentic relationship with the Father and Christ Jesus, and are closer than they every felt when they thought they were a special class of Christians. When a Christian understands and believes that there is ‘one hope, one faith, one baptism, one Lord, and one God and Father of all’ (Ephesians 4:4-6), he or she will not be misled by the machinations of men designed to control and debase the faith and spiritual standing of others.     

Unfortunately for millions of Jehovah’s Witnesses, they are being led by elitists who stand with their backs to the doors of the Kingdom of the Heavens, not going in themselves, and fighting with all who are attempting to go in. (Matthew 23:13) We find that neither the Governing Body nor the Writing Department have any special knowledge about the heavens as demonstrated by the glaring absence of heavenly information in their written materials. Nor has their supernatural anointing created in them spiritual clarity. Instead, they vacillate from one preposterous assumption to another, going from error to error instead of following the clear, plain and open teachings of Christ.     

Until the Governing Body humbly accepts that they are, at best, on equal footing with every other Christian who picks up the torture stake of Christ, they will continue being mislead and misleading others, distorting the love of God and Christ Jesus who are not partial and who make no class distinctions.

“You are all, in fact, sons of God through your faith in Christ Jesus. For all of you who were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor freeman, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in union with Christ Jesus. Moreover, if you belong to Christ, you are really Abraham’s offspring, heirs with reference to a promise.”
– Galatians 3:26-29

We hope you have not allowed the error of superstitious confirmations or the pursuit of a fleshly destiny prevent you from accepting the natural and authentic offer of sonship with the Father for yourself. If you have, perhaps you will allow this response to adjust your mental attitude as Paul wrote:

“I am pressing on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God by means of Christ Jesus. Therefore, let those of us who are mature be of this mental attitude, and if you are mentally inclined otherwise in any respect, God will reveal the above attitude to you.”
– Philippians 3:14-15

♦  Visitor does not believe Jehovah’s Witnesses have unusual spiritual experiences.

On December 8, 2014, we received the following comment:

“Unusual spiritual experiences, visions, audible words, sensation of oil being poured over the body, other unusual occurrences? This is what [Jehovah’s Witnesses] believe? Now I do know beyond doubt that you people are mentally deranged and purposely trying to deceive others.” 

To the author, thank you for your emails. Before we respond to your comment, we want to say that even though your emails are mostly hateful, the fact that you write us practically every day shows that you are reading everything we post. If you are sincerely seeking truth, we believe in time the things you have read will begin to bear witness with your spirit. We excuse most of your comments based on the fact that you have only been studying with Jehovah’s Witnesses for 3 months and really do not understand the organization you are associating with. But if you would like to have a real interchange, the next time you write, provide an email address and we will be happy to respond privately to your comments since most of what you write is not suitable for publication.

We chose to post this email because we suspect there are other people who may have a similar reaction, but perhaps from a different perspective.  Your comment indicates that you don’t believe Jehovah’s Witnesses are having these experiences.  Others might think that Jehovah’s Witnesses who have those experiences are mentally challenged.  Either way, we want to provide a little more insight into these experiences for both points of view.

As we mentioned in the article The Witness of the Spirit, Jehovah’s Witnesses have a unique and significant struggle to accept their awakening to sonship. Many have been taught from infancy the idea that only a very small number of people are sons of God with the heavenly hope and that small number are likely very old. Others have been mesmerized by the constant repetition of that teaching in the Watchtower publications, artwork and in congregational comments and discussions, and by the unspoken, but real, threat of being ‘marked’ or disfellowshipped for simply having a different view. This may be information you are not aware of since you have so little knowledge of the Watchtower organization and its people.  But as a result of these real issues, the wall separating Jehovah’s Witnesses from their sonship with their heavenly Father is almost insurmountable. Here is where the witness of the spirit among Jehovah’s Witnesses may take on a more unusual and profound nature.

Our celestial family, including the Father, Christ Jesus, and the myriads of other revealed and unrevealed personalities are very aware of the struggle of Jehovah’s Witnesses and the struggles of others whose circumstances interfere with them freely accepting sonship, such as those raised in Judaism, Islam, and other religions who do not yet understand the true nature of Christ Jesus. In order for these individuals to understand the magnitude of the Father’s love and His desire for them to come to Him and be with Him, there often, but not always, needs to be an additional manifestation to give them the courage to take the leap of faith despite their upbringing and training. These additional manifestations are spiritual in nature and therefore not easily explainable.

Accordingly, when such a person tries to explain this additional spiritual manifestation, what comes out may sound strange, odd, even foolish to the average person. Spiritual matters are hard to explain in fleshly terms. The human mind does not have the vocabulary to accurately convey what really occurred.  Notice the difficulty the Apostle Paul had in describing his own spiritual experience:

“I have to boast. It is not beneficial, but I will move on to supernatural visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in union with Christ who, 14 years ago—whether in the body or out of the body, I do not know; God knows—was caught away to the third heaven. Yes, I know such a man—whether in the body or apart from the body, I do not know; God knows—who was caught away into paradise and heard words that cannot be spoken and that are not lawful for a man to say.  I will boast about such a man, but I will not boast about myself except of my weaknesses. For even if I want to boast, I will not be unreasonable, for I would say the truth. But I refrain from doing so, in order that no one should give me more credit than what he sees in me or hears from me, just because of receiving such extraordinary revelations.”
– 2 Corinthians 12:1-7

It took him 14 years to openly speak about it and when he did, he hesitated to admit it was his own experience! And recall the difficulties the Apostle John and other prophets had in describing the visions they recorded that became part of the Bible canon. They struggled because there was nothing in their experience consistent with what they saw that they could draw from to explain the visions. So they used the language of the day and drew parallels to things common to their generational experiences. Consequently, many who read these writings find them fanciful and even foolish.  Many of their contemporaries likely viewed these prophets as mentally unstable.    

The Apostle Paul wrote something on this subject:

“For who among men knows the things of a man except the man’s spirit within him? So, too, no one has come to know the things of God except the spirit of God. Now we received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit that is from God, so that we might know the things that have been kindly given us by God. These things we also speak, not with words taught by human wisdom, but with those taught by the spirit, as we explain spiritual matters with spiritual words. But a physical man does not accept the things of the spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot get to know them, because they are examined spiritually. However, the spiritual man examines all things, but he himself is not examined by any man. For “who has come to know the mind of Jehovah, so that he may instruct him?” But we do have the mind of Christ.”
– 1 Corinthians 2:11-16     

Here, Paul says that spiritual matters are explained by spiritual words, words that are difficult for the human mind to express. He says that in order to understand spiritual matters, one would have to view them with the mind of Christ. This is the challenge that our brothers and sisters who have unique spiritual experiences are faced with when they try to explain their experience. Many of those who listen to them do not have the mind of Christ, and so these matters, and unfortunately these brothers and sisters, appear foolish.    

For this reason, we have earlier suggested that our brothers and sisters who have these types of experiences recognize that they were given for their own benefit, not to prove their faith to others (See Question and Response February 25, 2012), and why we choose not to publish many of these personal experiences on our website. (See Question and Response March 23, 2012.)  Should you chose to share them, we suggest you share them with those who are capable of putting on ‘the mind of Christ’ so as not to stumble others from establishing and accepting their own relationship with the Father.         

We also want to emphasize that spiritual experiences occur and are real and purposeful, but are never given for mere amusement. Also, they are more common than many people think, so it is wise not to become fanatical about them, thinking that those who receive them are especially chosen by God. We are all chosen. The question is: Who will respond to the choosing? Who will accept the invitation to be adopted as sons of God into the heavens? As Paul wrote: 

“For you see his calling of you, brothers, that there are not many wise in a fleshly way, not many powerful, not many of noble birth, but God chose the foolish things of the world to put the wise men to shame; and God chose the weak things of the world to put the strong things to shame; and God chose the insignificant things of the world and the things looked down on, the things that are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, so that no one might boast in the sight of God. But it is due to him that you are in union with Christ Jesus, who has become to us wisdom from God, also righteousness and sanctification and release by ransom, so that it may be just as it is written: “The one who boasts, let him boast in Jehovah.” 
– 1 Corinthians 1:26-31

We hope these comments have been helpful, especially to the visitor whose email we are responding to. Never underestimate God’s ability and desire to communicate with His children and guide them into all truth. He is as active and concerned today as He ever was, and even more so since the advent of His Son Christ Jesus and the outpouring of the Spirit of Truth.     

We encourage you to use your study as an opportunity to develop the mind of Christ and not as fuel to attack others, as Jesus counseled (Matthew 7:1-5), especially when you have so little knowledge about us and about the organization you have begun associating with. And take a close look at Jesus’ words at Matthew 5:21-22, as some of your emails have stepped far beyond fair criticism, and are putting your own salvation in jeopardy.

♦ How are people or a person baptized with the Holy Spirit?

On May 12, 2015, we received the following inquiry:

"How are people or a person baptized with the Holy Spirit?"

To the author, thank you for your email. We are responding publicly because we believe others may have the same question.

Jesus made baptism by spirit possible when he poured out his spirit – the Spirit of Truth – at Pentecost shortly after his resurrection. Being baptized with that holy spirit is merely the conscious reception of the Spirit of Truth in our life and a personal acknowledgment of this new spirit power actuating our mind and heart. All one needs to do in order to be ‘baptized’ in the spirit is to pray for it and make a consecration to follow its leading. It’s really that simple.

Spirit baptism signifies our rebirth, or being born again, and being delivered from bondage to the flesh and its desires. The spirit’s leading does not require us to exercise self-denial. The spirit’s leading is always positive in nature. It will move us to spontaneously exhibit the fruits of the spirit which is the highest form of self-control. A spirit born person views their consecration, not as a duty, but as a privilege to clear one’s minds and body from evil thoughts and deeds. And it creates a sublime peace with the Father and an assurance of salvation and personality survival after the death of the mortal body. It is the ultimate destroyer of doubt. Thus, a spirit born person does not need a written law. The law of God is written in our hearts, meaning ‘God’s will is our will.’

Since the Spirit of Truth is, in essence, the spirit of Jesus, following the leading of the spirit will always lead you down a path that imitates Jesus, that honors the Father, and that serves our brothers and our neighbors. A person who is baptized with holy spirit follows Jesus exclusively. He or she is not a follower of men. Additionally, those baptized with the Spirit of Truth are lovers of truth.  They will not accept error for the sake of peace, comfort, fear or ease. Like the Apostle Peter, one who is baptized with holy spirit will ‘obey God as ruler rather than men’ at all costs. Being baptized with spirit is the first step toward spiritual understanding and the only ticket into the deeper things of God and the heavenly kingdom.

One knows he has been baptized by the spirit by the way he thinks and behaves. He will attempt the ultimate goal of becoming ‘perfect as the heavenly Father is perfect.’ Not perfection according to man’s standards which are fraught with so much minutia and controlling restrictions. But being perfect according to the Father’s standard – the fulfillment of the two greatest commandments – to love God with your whole being and to love your neighbor as yourself.

♦ In QR 5/12/15, are we promising freedom without moral restraint?

On May 16, 2015, we received the following comment:

[Regarding Question and Response 5/12/15] “Your answer made a lot of good points, except where you say: "The spirit's leading does not require us to exercise self-denial." Notice the "words of Jesus", as you are so fond of saying: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself." -- Mt 16:24; Mk 8:34; Lk 9:23 (NIV and many others) Based on Jesus' own words, therefore, 'exercising self-denial" is absolutely essential for entrance into, and maintaining Christian discipleship and sonship through Spirit baptism. This is confirmed by Rom 7:21-25 and 1 Cor 9:24-27. Surely you're not "promising them freedom" without moral restraint are you? (2 Pt 2:19 NAS) Agape.”  

To the author, thank you for your email and for closely examining the information we publish.  We see your point. Perhaps we should have stated our position another way to avoid confusion.

When we wrote that the spirit’s leading does not require us to exercise self-denial, we were referring to self-denial in the sense that Jesus was at Matthew 16:24, Mark 8:34 and Luke 9:23.  Jesus said we would need to ‘disown ourselves.’ That means that we would let go of self-importance and pride, and humble ourselves to the teachings and ministry of the Christ instead of following our own counsel or the counsel of others on how to gain life.

We do not believe he was encouraging us to withhold bodily pleasures by doing things such as fasting, physically beating ourselves, or purposely living a life of poverty thinking those acts are pleasing or required. Even Paul’s words at 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 do not carry that meaning, although there are many people who believe he was, in fact, encouraging Jesus’ followers to inflict some type of bodily harm to themselves in order to be found faithful. There are whole religious orders who practice self-harm thinking it is the way to life. That is not what Jesus or Paul were saying, nor what we were saying.

What we were trying to explain is that we do not need to constantly deprive ourselves in order to please God.  We are to rejoice, eat the fruits of our labor, and be shining examples of the kindly and light load. So rather than focusing on what we cannot or should not do, we encourage our brothers and sisters to focus on what they should do, specifically that we should display the fruits of the spirit which we said is was the highest form of self-control.  Self-control continues to be important, but the method is proactive, positive and giving, rather than reactive, negative and withholding.

We in no way want to ‘promise freedom without moral restraint.’ We are just explaining that moral restraint should not be our goal.  The goal is to do something positive – like producing the fruits of the spirit.  When you are positive and proactive, you automatically avoid the works of the flesh. It is similar to our view that the congregations should not focus on sin, but rather on good works and positive actions, and thereby there is no room for sin to take hold.

If some read our response to Question and Response 5/12/15 and concluded that we were encouraging moral abandonment, we apologize and hope this response clears up our message.

♦ What was the “new light” in the September 2015 JW Broadcast?

On September 13, 2015, we received the following inquiry:     

“I enjoyed your latest article on the generation teaching [“This Generation” - The September 2015 JW Broadcast”].  I just wanted to point out that I don’t believe this was a case of "new light". This explanation was given in the January 15, 2014 Watchtower under the article "Let Your Kingdom Come but when?" It slipped in under the radar but I caught it and tried pointing it out to others that in fact they were now creating a 3rd class of anointed ones.”    

To the author, thank you for your email. You are correct that the January 15, 2014 Watchtower article revealed the belief by the Governing Body that there is a third class of anointed. But the existence of a  third class of anointed ones is not the “new light” we were referring to in the new article This Generation.”  The “new light” is what David Splane said about this third class.    

The article quoted David Splane when he said: 

“But who’s to say that Jehovah won’t be anointing more people years from now, and then they’ll be reading about us in some updated version of the Proclaimer’s Book. Well the answer is simple. Anyone anointed years from now would not have been a contemporary of the first group of anointed ones because they have passed off the scene.”

By these comments, the Governing Body is teaching the probability that: (1) there are true anointed Christians who were first anointed after 1992, the cut-off day for the second class of anointed; and (2) Jehovah will anoint others ‘years from now.’This is “new light” for Jehovah’s Witnesses because the Governing Body has long taught that the heavenly hope was closed in 1935 and that any new anointed would be mere replacements and would be few and far between. And they never abandoned their teaching that the anointed would be dying off as the ‘end’ nears. But with the September 2015 broadcast, those teachings have changed!    

We recognize that this may not be what the Governing Body wanted to teach, given their history and the way they direct Elders to treat those who are newly anointed. Nevertheless, it was said, recorded and published by the Watchtower organization so faithful Jehovah’s Witnesses are free to accept this as “new light.”     

In their efforts to explain away and discount Jesus’ plain words, they actually discounted their own teachings and, in the process, showed that truth cannot be forever hidden under manmade dogma. Yes, all who desire to be anointed as sons of God with the heavenly hope will be given it. (John 1:12) It is the goal toward which we all should be pressing. (Matthew 11:12) Lies cannot destroy truth; they can only divert attention away from truth for a little while.  But times are changing within the Watchtower organization, as Jesus prophesied:

“So do not fear them, for there is nothing covered over that will not become uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known. What I tell you in the darkness, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, preach from the housetops.”
– Matthew 10:26-27  

We hope this ‘new light’ of anointing will be preached from the housetops, both within and outside of the Watchtower organization. The Governing Body is stabbing themselves over with many pains, but the true faith sons of God are rejoicing in truth and having a real share in the true ministry of reconciliation. As a result of their efforts, there is steady growth of faith sons among Jehovah’s Witnesses who have abandoned their fear of men and are also grabbing hold of the prize of the upward call. We believe this September 2015 JW Broadcast will be a useful tool in accomplishing that work. 

As the article stated: 

We hope Jehovah’s Witnesses who are struggling with accepting their sonship will take note. Finally, the Governing Body acknowledges that there are, and will continue to be, anointed Christians for years to come! As John the Baptist described, the ‘earthly hopers’ will keep on decreasing while the ‘heavenly hopers’ keep on increasing! (John 3:30)

And we look forward to more ‘manna’ being inadvertently served by the Governing Body as they stumble along in darkness trying desperately to patch the ever increasing holes on their sinking so-called ‘ark of salvation.

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