THE HISTORY OF THE JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES
Charles Taze Russell, born Feb. 16, 1852, was the founder of
"Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society", who later became known as
Jehovah's Witnesses. Russell lived in Pittsburgh and was not educated
beyond the seventh grade. He had no theological training, and knew
neither Greek nor Hebrew. His church background was Scotch-Irish
Presbyterian, although he became an agnostic early in life. Later, he
returned to the study of the scriptures and became convinced that the
Bible did not really teach such doctrines as the Trinity, the Deity of
Christ, the Bodily resurrection of Christ and the existence of hell.
In 1884 he and a group of like minded people formed the "Zion's Watch
Tower Tract Society". Russell perjured himself in court, and his wife
was given a decree of divorce because the Judge of the High Court of
Ontario was of the opinion that no woman of ordinary sensibility could
live with a man of so much egotism and arrogance. Russell wrote
numerous articles and published a six-volume series of books entitled,
"Studies in the Scriptures". Russell proclaimed himself "the faithful
and wise servant" of Luke 12:42. Russell died in 1916.
Joseph Franklin Rutherford succeeded Russell. Joseph Rutherford
or "Judge Rutherford" as he was called, was sent to the Atlanta
penitentiary for sedition in 1918, and was released in March, 1919. He
became a martyred hero to the Witnesses. Rutherford was a lawyer and a
special judge in the absence of the regular judge of the Eighth
Judicial Circuit Court of Boonville, Missouri prior to 1909. In 1917,
he was unanimously chosen to succeed Russell. He held the position of
President of the Society until his death in 1942. Some of his
accomplishments were as follows: (1) He wrote a book a year, plus
numerous articles for the "Watchtower" and "The Golden Age" and
successive editions of the "Yearbook of Jehovah's Witnesses". (2) He
revealed the new name for the Society as "Jehovah's Witnesses" in
1931. The name was supposedly revealed by God from Isaiah 43:10. (3)
He did help the cause of religious freedom by winning many cases in
the U S Supreme Court as well as in State Supreme Courts.
Nathan H. Knorr succeeded Rutherford as President of the
Jehovah's Witnesses immediately after Rutherfords' death. Knorr had
been a bodyguard for Rutherford, so he was familiar with the duties of
the President. Knorr founded a committee that set the groups doctrine
and published its articles, instead of having one man doing all the
writing. Two of the most popular and dangerous books to come out of
this committee were "Let God be True" and "The New World Translation
of the Holy Scriptures".
(A) .. THE JEHOVAHS WITNESSES' POSITION ON THE RESURRECTION OF CHRIST:
(1) "The King, Christ Jesus, was put to death in the flesh and was
resurrected an invisible spirit creature." - WATCHTOWER BIBLE AND
TRACT SOCIETY, PG. 22, EDITION 1946.
(2) "In his resurrection he was no more than human. He was raised as
a spirit creature." - "THE KINGDOM IS AT HAND", WATCHTOWER BIBLE AND
TRACT SOCIETY, PG. 258.
(3) "Christ's body was dissolved into gasses" .. "preserved somewhere
as the grand memorial of God's love." - WATCHTOWER BIBLE AND TRACT
SOCIETY, PG. 129, VOLUME 2.
(4) The J.W. belief centers around 1 Peter 3:18. This verse says that
Christ was "made alive in the spirit".
(5) "Dematerializing His assumed human body and returning to His
invisible spirit state, Jesus in His ascension ran no risk to His life
such as from radiation belts around the earth or cosmic rays in outer
space. While He did not ascend to heaven in the human body that He had
sacrificed and that He left forever upon God's altar, He did return to
heaven with the merit or value of His human life that He had lain down
for dying mankind." - "LET YOUR NAME BE SANCTIFIED", PG. 272.
(B) .. WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES CONCERNING THE RESURRECTION OF CHRIST:
(1) "If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is vain, your
faith is also vain." - 1 CORINTHIANS 15:14
(2) "The word 'RESURRECTION' in the Bible is never applied to soul or
spirit of man." - "J.W.'S AND THE RESURRECTION" PORTLAND TRACT
(3) "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will rais it up." -
"But He was speaking of the temple of his body." - JOHN 2:19,21
The greek word "SOMA" is translated "BODY" throughout the New
Testament, and that is the word John uses.
(4) "See my hands and my feet, that it is I Myself; touch me and see,
for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have."
Later in luke 24, Vs. 42 and 43, He eats food. Sometimes J.W.'s
attempt to explain this by 1 CORINTHIANS 15:44 as a "spiritual body".
Paul still uses the word "SOMA" for body in this verse, so a spiritual
body is not "A SPIRIT".
(5) Concerning 1 PETER 3:18, this verse only proves that it was by
the spirit of God that Christ was raised, as mentioned in ROMANS 8:11.
(6) The true teaching concerning the resurrection of Christ does
indeed determine a persons eternal destiny! 1 CORINTHIANS 15: 14,17
and ROMANS 10:9.
1. Highlight the verses above in your bible for quick reference, and
become familiar with them.
2. When discussing any topic with a J.W., don't let them stray from
the topic. Be sure to discuss only one topic at a time, and reach a
conclusion before moving on.
3. Always remember 1 PETER 3:15 when witnessing to anyone.
4. Memorize Colosians 2:8,9.
5. PRAY !!!
Computers for Christ