Friday, January 4, 2008

Truth is Over There!!!

I was pondering Jehovah’s Witnesses again the other day, and just going over their modes of thinking to try to understand just how they work. And something came to me. I remember growing up as a Seventh Day Adventist, and I really didn’t know what the world was all about. The vast majority of the Seventh-Day Adventists I know (and am related to) are what I’d call religious but not spiritual. The truth is, the Spirit is what draws a person, religion draws people who want to be right. That is what religion really is after all, it is a system wherein you learn the truth handed down in the form of rules. Thus, if you follow the rules, you are right, end of story.

Spirituality and true Jesus Freakiness is about a relationship. Jesus fulfilled the law and all the rules, so they are no longer in a list for us to follow, but they are written on our hearts. We don’t need to do something or not do something because the Bible says so, we do or don’t because it is the way we have become. We live as Christ lives in us. This was the kind of thing I didn’t understand as an SDA. When I wanted to reach out to a neighbor girl (I was like 8, as was she) all I could do was to invite her to church. I did this because I didn’t know Jesus, the best I could do was to point her to someone who did, I thought.

I find this same philosophy or mentality with JW’s. All they have is what they have been told, what they read. There is nothing written on their hearts. They are not Jehovah’s Witnesses, they haven’t witnessed anything, they just heard about it, that makes them Jehovah’s Gossips. How does that play out? They leave Watchtowers and Awake!s around at bus stops and park benches and hospital lobbies where I find them and take them home to add to my collection. What they are saying is "Look at this, surely this will convince you because I'm shooting blanks spiritually speaking." Some SDA's can tend to do the same thing with Ellen White.

Perusing the internet, I found a website called something like Six Screens of the Watchtower. This guy had been disfellowshipped and actually taped the meeting by sticking a recorder in a cut out in one of the books he had brought to the meeting. After he had pled his case and offered his arguments, he was temporarily dismissed for a closed door meeting. And then………….virtual silence. What was going on? All to be heard was rustling of pages. No speaking, and as far as I could tell, no critical or individual thinking. They were looking up verses and passages in their books, there was not a thought among them. That is what separates a religious person from a spiritual person. Spirituality in the correct context draws all power from the Holy Spirit. Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t believe in the Holy Spirit per se, therefore, they can’t really come up with much creative content.

What impresses me is when someone can witness without a Bible in his or her hand, because you know it is in his or her heart, and they do not need to get the words right because the Spirit is working directly through them. This is what the essence of a true believer is. We don’t all need to be missionaries to other countries, but we do all need to be missionaries here where we do live. We can’t all be preachers or pastors, but we can all disciple others.

And for any Jehovah’s Witnesses, before you complain about being insulted, why not actually read what is written and ask yourself if it is true.

If it is not, then complain.


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