“Sundace’s” comment on my article: “Can Jehovah’s Witnesses have beards?”
|“This is not true at all, there are many in other lands that have beards and privileges!! Get your facts straight before you tell untruths”|
My reply to “Sundance”:
You present a “Red Herring” argument by diverting attention from the real issue (That beards are in fact strictly governed) by focusing instead on an issue having only a surface relevance (that SOME congregations allow beards, albeit incredibly rare). The red herring is a well-understood logical fallacy that I have found very common among JW reasoning.
You say “many other lands”. I disagree. “SOME other congregations” would be more accurate. Furthermore, who has the right to say which congregations may have beards and which not? There is no scriptural basis to govern shaving at all. Beards are allowed in some lands, only because the Governing Body wouldn’t stand a chance at forcing them to shave, because beards are so deeply ingrained in the culture of those lands.
You say that this is article not true at all, but fail to point out where I have presented “untruths”. What specifically have I said that is not true? I will correct anything that you can prove is not true.
I truly hope you respond, but I understand that you’re forbidden from engaging with so-called apostates. Your beloved Watchtower says, and I quote: “It would be a mistake to think that you need to listen to apostates or to read their writings to refute their arguments. Their twisted, poisonous reasoning can cause spiritual harm and can contaminate your faith like rapidly spreading gangrene.” [Watchtower 2004 Feb 15 p.28]
I also understand the hatred many JW’s have for us so-called “apostates” who speak up against your organization. Your Watchtower magazine makes it clear when it said: “we can take action against apostates only to a certain extent, that is, consistent with both sets of laws. The law of the land and God’s law through Christ forbid us to kill apostates.” [Watchtower 1952 Nov 15 p. 703]
“Freddy’s” reply to my article: “Do Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that they’re the only ones going to heaven?”
Instead of railing against this group why not practice what Jesus said: express love and most importantly…preach the Kingdom to all the earth. Obviously you are lacking as the alleged errors in your rant are not accurate. It sure helps to do deep research before wailing on.
You missed big at the outset. Never have I heard a JW say ” only JWs go to heaven.”
Good advide…take some time and speak with a few.
LOUSY SCHOLARSHIP on your part.
My reply to “Freddy”:
Hi Freddy, I hope you are well during these difficult times. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment here.
There is no mistake, and these are not my opinions. I’ll share 12 Watchtower quotes with you to check out. I will leave the links to the relevant JW.ORG articles so you can check them out for yourself – I encourage you to do so. [1 John 4:1]
“Only Jehovah’s Witnesses, those of the anointed remnant and the “great crowd,” as a united organization under the protection of the Supreme Organizer, have any Scriptural hope of surviving the impending end” – Remaining Organized for Survival Into the Millennium – Watchtower 1989, Sept 1, Remaining Organized for Survival Into the Millennium
“Annihilation awaits all who will not listen and who thereby set themselves against rule by God’s Kingdom.”- Watchtower 2001 Feb 15 p. 14
“survival of individuals today depends on their faith and their loyal association with the earthly part of Jehovah’s universal organization.” – Watchtower 2006 May 15, Are You Prepared for Survival?
“To receive everlasting life in the earthly Paradise we must identify that organization and serve God as part of it.” – Watchtower 1983 Feb 15 p.12
“… to leave Jehovah’s organization … we would lose not only the privilege of doing God’s will but also the hope of life in God’s new world.” – Watchtower 2016, Do Not Let the Faults of Others Stumble You
“Any person who wants to survive into God’s righteous new order urgently needs to come into a right relationship with Jehovah and His earthly organization now.” – Watchtower 1981, Nov 15, “Stay Awake and Keep Your Senses”
“Could not a sincere person wait until he actually sees Jehovah’s executional judgments beginning, and then quickly come over to His side? While that might sound appealing to some, would there then be enough time to build the right relationship with Jehovah? The evidence from the Scriptures answers, No.” – Watchtower 1981, Nov 15, “Stay Awake and Keep Your Senses”
“Unless we are in touch with this channel of communication that God is using, we will not progress along the road to life, no matter how much Bible reading we do.” – Watchtower 1981 Dec 1, “The Path of the Righteous Does Keep Getting Brighter”
“if in these last days parents refuse to heed the divine instruction and warning they bring destruction upon themselves and their small children at Armageddon.” – Watchtower 1950 Nov 15, Questions From Readers
“But what must they do to survive the violent destruction of Satan’s old world and enter the promised new world under the Greater Joshua, Jesus Christ? They must keep in line with the organizational arrangements of the nucleus of Jehovah’s visible organization, the anointed remnant.” Watchtower 1989, Sep 1, Organizing Now for the Thousand Years to Come
“Jehovah is using only one organization today to accomplish his will. To receive everlasting life in the earthly Paradise we must identify that organization and serve God as part of it.” You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth, Four Requirements
To answer some of your other questions, I am expressing love by warning others. I have nothing against individual Jehovah’s Witnesses, many of them do not even understand their own doctrine. I have a deep concern for them.
You say: “Never have I heard a JW say “only JWs go to heaven” “. I agree, and so will many. I have however heard my fellow Witnesses say “only Jehovah’s Witnesses are going to survive destruction” many times over the years.
“Bearded JW’S” reply to my article: “Can Jehovah’s Witnesses have beards?”
|I’m a JW in good standing and with a beard. It is true that I wouldn’t have any privileges because of it but it is also true that I haven’t been approached or coerced about my beard by any elder, and I enjoy a good relationship with my brothers and sisters! No, we don’t have any Big brother here that is constantly looking over our shoulders to find faults in us. JWs are as mind controlling as the first century Christians were. It would be naïve to think that ancient Christians didn’t have some norms or “oral laws” as you said that didn’t infringe in some disciples personal preferences like grooming or attire. By the way, JW’s in Spain and Greece wear beards and they have privileges (Google pictures) Your reasoning isn’t only faulty but perverse.|
My reply to “Bearded JW”:
The fact that we are even discussing this, is enough to show that there is an issue surrounding beards among Jehovah’s Witnesses. The fact that you ended up on this page, says the same. You agree that a bearded Witness will not have any privileges, and say it without asking, what is the scriptural basis for this?
You say: “It would be naïve to think that ancient Christians didn’t have some norms or “oral laws” as you said that didn’t infringe in some disciples personal preferences like grooming or attire.” Have you really thought about this? I’m not so sure… I’ll ask you, were Greek Christians required to grow beards to become Christians, as not to stumble their fellow Jewish Christians? Were the Jewish Christians required to shave as not to stumble their fellow Greek brothers and sisters? No. Outside of basic modesty, like avoiding provocative dress, there were no such laws. In fact, Jesus was opposed to such “laws of man”. “Do not go beyond the things that are written, so that you may not be puffed up with pride, favoring one against the other.” Jehovah’s Witnesses favor shaven brothers with privileges, by applying oral laws that go beyond what is written.
You say: “JWs are as mind-controlling as the first century Christians were.” I disagree. Give me one example where early Christians employed the use of logical fallacies in the way that Watchtower does. Here is a list of examples of logical fallacies used by Watchtower: https://jwanswers.com/watchtower-quotes-about-propaganda/
You say that you don’t have a “Big Brother” looking for faults in the brothers and sisters, while there is a literal policy in the organization where even minor transgressions must be reported to the elders. Sure, maybe you don’t have a “Big Brother” looking for faults, rather dozens of brothers and sisters that would turn you over to the elders in a heartbeat for virtually any mistake you might make.
Your last statement does little to support your argument. “By the way, JW’s in Spain and Greece wear beards and they have privileges.” How does that prove anything? You’ve only shown that beards are indeed regulated by the organization using rules that “go beyond what is written”.
As a last note, I really am glad that you are able to grow a beard in your congregation, but you need to understand that this is the exception to the rule. In the absolute majority of congregations, beards are heavily frowned upon by brothers and sisters.
PS. Usually, I don’t bother sharing my personal experiences, because readers will just say that I am outright lying, but I will share some with you seeing as you shared yours with me.
When studying to get baptized, I was required to start shaving before I was accepted to be baptized. I was taught by the elder I was studying with, that one way to spot the difference between spiritual brothers and the weak ones, was whether they are shaven or not.
When I started to grow out my beard, the brothers, sisters, and group overseers were shocked when I pitched up at field service with a beard. At the very next meeting, I was “invited” to the backroom and heavily counseled about it. I asked the elders what the scriptural reasoning behind beards is, they said they don’t know, and could only say that my beard is offensive to the rest of the Witnesses and that I need to be more submissive to the leadership.
|You said: “Sure, maybe you don’t have a “Big Brother” looking for faults, rather dozens of brothers and sisters that would turn you over to the elders in a heartbeat for virtually any mistake you might make” …You know, in your heart, as former Witness that isn’t true. You use half truth to build up fallacies and spew your bitterness against JW. In my 35 years as JW, and being in several congregations, what you said never happened. Witnesses love each other and they don’t go around trying to find fault in their brothers and sisters. JW’s aren’t tatty tellers. Yes, if they see you doing something really wrong they wouldn’t be quiet but would you?|
I ask you: What happened to you when the elders counselled you about your beard wouldn’t be the same if you went to the meetings or field service in faded jeans or sneakers for example? Most likely yes, you’d be counselled. So is there anything wrong about wearing faded jeans or sneakers? Does any scripture prohibit them? No really, JW just find them not proper for worshipping Jehovah.
Several of your reasoning about the subject of JW’s beards are half truth. Be careful; when Satan approached Eve he used also half truth “Did God really say that you must not eat from every tree of the garden?” (Ge 3;1) very cunning…
Anyhow, I’m done and I won’t reply any further. You got the last word.
“You use half truth to build up fallacies and spew your bitterness against JW.” That is a lot of accusations in such a short sentence. Let me break it down into three parts:
I understand that based on your belief that they may appear to be “half-truth”, but you’ll need to be more specific so we can address them in a civilized manner. If you can prove without a doubt that any of my statements are untrue, I will gladly retract them.
Speaking of half truths, let’s see if Jehovah’s Witnesses are guilty of the same.
“By applying unselfish love in their marriages, Jehovah’s Witnesses achieve stable relationships. In some countries one marriage out of every two or three ends in divorce. But the above-mentioned survey indicated that presently only 4.9 percent of the Witnesses are divorced or separated from their mates.” – Awake 1997 Sep 8 p.11
This statement is misleading. It compares the number of people who are currently divorced with the number of people who will end up divorced. In reality, the percentage of the general population that is currently divorced is 4%, less than what is claimed by Jehovah’s Witnesses.
I am well familiarized with logical fallacies and do my best to avoid them. So please be sure to point them out and I will gladly retract them.
On that note, I will use this opportunity to share with you where Watchtower is had published logical fallacies.
- “These opponents say that dates have been set, but nothing has happened. Again we ask, What is the motive of these critics? Are they encouraging wakefulness on the part of God’s people, or are they, rather, trying to justify themselves for falling back into sleepy inactivity?” – Watchtower 1986
Why not answer the question. What are the claims of so-called apostates, and why are they wrong? Instead, Ad Hominem is employed by questioning the motive or character and completely dismissing the claim.
- “It would be a mistake to think that you need to listen to apostates or to read their writings to refute their arguments. Their twisted, poisonous reasoning can cause spiritual harm and can contaminate your faith like rapidly spreading gangrene.” Watchtower 2004 Feb 15 p.28
How can one determine that any reasoning is twisted and poisonous without knowing even what was said? Again, the claims are ignored, and the character or motive is put under the spotlight.
Other logical fallacies employed by Watchtower include
- Punishing questioning and Dissent
- False generalizations
- Play on Pride
- Play on Fear
- Play on Guilt
- Red Herring
- Outright Deception
Here is a list of quotes where these tactics have been used: https://jwanswers.com/watchtower-quotes-about-propaganda/
Speaking of logical fallacies. Ever heard of “Ad Hominem”? This is where you question the person’s motive or character, rather than consider the facts. Heres an example of this:
Bearded JW, is it possible that you are projecting your own feelings by calling me bitter because some of what I have said is a “bitter pill to swallow”?
It is not an ethical way to debate a topic. To say I am writing this out of bitterness is a complete assumption, based solely on the fact that you don’t agree with my findings.
“What happened to you when the elders counselled you about your beard wouldn’t be the same if you went to the meetings or field service in faded jeans or sneakers for example? Most likely yes, you’d be counselled. So is there anything wrong about wearing faded jeans or sneakers? Does any scripture prohibit them? No really, JW just find them not proper for worshipping Jehovah.”
What is wrong with faded jeans and sneakers? What about those who can’t afford jackets and trousers? Much less a suit for that matter.
Again, your statement “Does any scripture prohibit them? No really, JW just find them not proper for worshipping Jehovah.”, does nothing to support your stance. There is no scripture that prohibits any dress (other than modesty). How did you come to the conclusion that anything other than corporate dress is not appropriate for worship? Where in the bible is there any talk of dress code at all?
“JW’s aren’t tatty tellers. Yes, if they see you doing something really wrong they wouldn’t be quiet but would you?”
Well, Matthew 18:15-17 – Jesus explains how to deal with a brother who commits a sin, and it does not involve running to any elders. Jesus said “…if your brother commits a sin, go and reveal his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.”
Jesus does not specify if it is a serious sin or a minor sin, and he doesn’t specify if it is a sin against you or a private sin.
What about going to the elders? There is nothing in the scriptures about becoming an informant. This is strictly a human/organizational directive. This is what the Bible says, that you should go to your brother and try to correct him personally. If he listens to you and stops sinning, you have gained a brother.
After all, isnt that the whole point? To bring him to his senses?