I don’t like to get into biblical dickering. Maybe one day I’ll post on some of the reasons why, but for now I would just say that if biblical interpretations are central to your beliefs, then I urge you to do some research on biblical scholarship from reputable sources. There is an amazing amount of great scholarship out there now.
On the other hand, you will also find that the bible is a collection of very selective works culled out from different communities over a very large span of time. As a result, if you want to find an argument to support your point of view, you can probably do so (especially if you take things out of context).
I don’t agree with every detail of this, but then again I didn’t write it. Take what you find useful.
This comes via email from J Mason Emerson of the Christian Witnesses online fellowship for ex-JWs and friends.
1. The Watchtower Society over JWs notes Acts 15:20 says “abstain from blood” and says for JWs to not take emergency blood transfusions even to save lives. Christ said “God wants mercy, not sacrifice” (Mt 12:7) and 1 Samuel 14:32-35 says Saul’s army ate un-bled meat unpunished as it was an emergency to save life; they just built an altar of repentance due to the Mosaic law of that time. Despite the no-blood teaching JWs can get organ transplants and those have blood. Also, identical twins transfuse blood to each other via a shared placenta.
2. JWs have formal Judicial Committees of elders to judge wrongdoers and these sometimes declare those judged to be disfellowshipped, meaning shunned by all other JWs including JW family and friends. At 2 Cor 2:6, Paul says of a wrongdoer he had recommended be shunned, “The punishment inflicted on him by the majority is sufficient for him,” which shows “the majority,” but not ALL, had complied with Paul. Those not shunning were not punished. Paul could only order Timothy as a worker otherwise Christians are equals free to obey conscience (Ro 14). James opposes formal judging; Christians can decide who to associate or not.
3. JWs judge holidays unworthy of celebrating. Colossians 2:16 and Galatians 4:10 say don’t “let anyone judge you” about holidays. JWs say Christians changing pagan customs to Christian objectives just mixed “darkness with light,” though we as Christians can say it instead turned “darkness into light.” Job’s kids celebrated days of birth (Job 1 then also compare Job 3 on “days” of banqueting and birth) and angels celebrated Christ’s birthday. Celebrating holidays brings JOY which is a fruit of God’s Spirit. (Ga 5:22). To not do so damages families. JWs teach Santa came from a god or wizard but he came from medieval gift-giver Nicolaus of Myra who wore red and carried a miter stick. The name Santa Claus is from the Dutch for Saint Nicolaus.
4. Countless Bible verses show Christ himself is the most “faithful and discreet slave” not, as JWs teach, their Governing Body men. 1Timothy 3:16 calls scriptures the only perfectly inspired source of answers that is the only perfect teacher which therefore isn’t the Governing Body?
5. JWs say theirs is the one and only true faith but when Paul at Ephesians 4:4 said there was just “one faith” this was universal or general Christianity which existed long before the Watchtower Society over JWs was formed in the late 1800s. Christ and apostles said the true faith helps the hungry, blind, lame, widows and orphans. Kind JWs sometimes do so but the men over JWs has done relatively little to help the the needy.
6. Romans 14 says Christians enjoy great freedom; Colossians 3:14 says the greatest bond of unity is LOVE not dictated sameness of views. JWs misteach being fitly united in unity is the same as uniformity in all beliefs.
7. Paul says “boast” of the cross which is a symbol of resurrection’s victory over death, (Ga 6:14, 1 Cor 1:17-18) not a “repugnant murder weapon” as the Governing Body men misteach JWs. Archaeology shows it was a cross, not a stake as JWs are mistold to teach. Crucifixion takes hours as Luke 23:44 and Matthew 27:45-6 say not minutes as would occur by stake. Greek “stauros” means cross or stake never just stake. Christians use rabbits and eggs to symbolize new life or resurrection not as a vestige of fertility rites as JWs teach.
8. At Matthew 6:9, Romans 8:15 and Galatians 4:6, Christ and Paul teach to pray using “our Father” in heaven or “Abba” (Dad) – not the formal conjectured names such as Jehovah or Yahweh. A child calls his father “Dad,” not “Mr Doe.” God taught Israel’s tribes to not misuse His name so that Christians and Jews often use “Lord” to show respect not in superstition as the Governing Body misteaches JWs to teach the public.
9. The Watchtower Society does not tell JWs it settled with 16 child abuse victims as Associated Press reports confirm for May 10, 2007. They keep sending all JWs preaching door to door including so-called “repentant” pedophiles even though their going declaring the name Jehovah is surely using God’s name in vain. JWs are told the newspapers lie but some have call headquarters in Brooklyn and insisted on hearing from the Legal Department who confirmed it. Gag orders ban details but some believe $3.5 million went to each victim. Pedophiles, murderers, rapists, wiretappers, stalkers and harassers need banned from preaching along with and around unsuspecting JW women and children. Besides informal witnesses is more effective and Luke 10:7 says “Do not be transferring house to house” in the New World Bible. Christ and the apostles went from a friendly house in one town to another in another town. Nowhere in the Bible does it say they banged on door after door.
10. Revelation 19:1 says a great crowd is in heaven not a little flock. Psalm 20:5 and Song of Solomon 2:4, 6:4,10 speak well of banners or flags as they show respect not idolatry. Paul says all have sinned and all die because of sin but the Governing Body misteaches that some JWs now living will never die. Most all Protestant and Catholic churches teach there are 3 different persons in one “Godship” (see New World Bible at Ro 1:20) or divine nature or trinity, but JWs are mistaught Protestants and Catholics say there’s 3 exact same persons, what only a few such as some Pentecostals teach. JWs have been mistaught that kind, loving former JWs hate them rather than the misdoings of the Watchtower Society and many also stay JWs to keep JW family and friends but happily more are cutting time and money donations to the Watchtower, giving more to help their families.
I can’t read the word “misteaches” or “mistaught” without flinching. That’s small of me, huh?