Friday, April 03, 2009

Cults: Jehovah’s Witnesses

Basic beliefs

[1] Denial of the deity of Christ; Christ is inferior to God. According to the New World Translation, the JW’s Bible, John 1:1 reads "and the Word was a god." John 14:28 does not teach the equality of the Son with the Father, but instead, shows the Son to be in subjection and thus inferior to the Father.

[2] Christ was a created being. He was the first creation of God the Father.

[3] Denial of the Trinity; God is one, both in essence and in person. The terms “God the Son” and “God the Holy Spirit” are not part of the JW vocabulary.

[4] Denial of Christ’s physical resurrection; The resurrection of Christ was a "spiritual" resurrection. His spirit was raised but not His body.

[5] Denial of conscious, eternal punishment, of the existence of a literal hell; Belief in the annihilation of the soul.

[6] Denial of Christ’s physical and visible return; Since Christ did not rise from the dead physically, neither will He return physically. Like His resurrection, His return is “spiritual.” The JW believes that Christ secretly returned in the year 1914 to set up His kingdom.

[7] Other JW doctrines:

  • Refusal to pledge allegiance to the flag or to vote, to enlist in the military, or to take blood transfusions (please read Supreme Court cases from various countries involving Jehovah’s Witnesses, from Wikipedia)
  • Refusal to celebrate birthdays or holidays
  • Only 144,000 (the “anointed class” or “little flock”) will reside in Heaven; All other JW’s (the “great crowd” or “other sheep”) will live in “Paradise” on earth
  • Jesus died by being impaled on a stake (a single vertical pole), not by being crucified on a cross
What the Bible really says

[1] Christ is God. He is divine in essence. During His earthly ministry, He was inferior in function or position (John 14:28). However, Christ is equal in essence or person to God the Father. Both are fully and equally God (John 10:30). Bible verses supporting Christ’s deity are John 1:1; Colossians 2:9; Hebrews 1:3; Titus 2:13; 2 Peter 1:1; Hebrews 1:8; and 1 John 5:20.

[2] Christ is the eternal Creator and He therefore could not have been created (Isaiah 9:6, Micah 5:2, John 1:3; 8:58; Colossians 1:16; Revelation 1:8).

[3] The Bible speaks of one God in three Persons. God is spoken of in the plural (Genesis 1:26, 11:7; Isaiah 6:8). All three Persons of the Godhead were present at Christ’s baptism (Matthew 3:16-17). Matthew 28:19 and 2 Corinthians 13:14 mention the three Persons of the Godhead.

[4] Christ physically rose from the dead (Luke 24:36-43; John 2:19-21; Colossians 2:9; 1 Timothy 2:5).

[5] Christ will return physically and visibly (Matthew 24:27, Acts 1:9-11; Revelation 1:7). His second coming has not yet happened.

[6] Conscious suffering in a literal hell awaits those who reject Christ (Luke 16:19-31; Matthew 18:8, 25:46, Mark 9:43, 48; 2 Thessalonians 1:9; Jude 7; Revelation 14:11, 19:3; 20:10).

Further study (Be like the Bereans! Acts 17:11)

[1] Jehovah's Witnesses, from Handbook of Today's Religions

[2] Jehovah’s Witnesses (Session 46), by Emery Nester Ed.D., D.Min

[3] Starting Over: Cultic Christianity - Reinventing the Faith, by Kenneth Boa Th.M.; Ph.D.; D.Phil.

[4] A Hell to Shun, by Bob Deffinbaugh , Th.M

[5] The Trinity (Triunity) of God, by J. Hampton Keathley, III , Th.M

[6] The Estrada vs. Escritor case: Did the Supreme Court of the Philippines legitimize live-in relationships in the name of freedom of religion?

[7] Materials from The Evidence Bible
[8] Please surf to Sermon / Preaching resources. Sermons are also available from South McGehee Baptist Church, McGehee, Arizona; Central Baptist Church, Lowesville; First Baptist Church, Mountain View, Missouri; Swift Creek Baptist Church; Word of Life Baptist Church, Pottsville, Philadelphia; Palm Springs Baptist Church, California; South Woods Baptist Church; Grove Baptist Church, Ulster; Dudley Baptist Church, United Kingdom; Independent Fundamental Baptist Sermons, Fundamental Christian Radio Broadcasts, Off-Site Audio Page and The Christian Radio Tuner

Notes: (1) This ministry does not necessarily endorse or share all the views and opinions expressed in the materials, resources or links mentioned in these posts. Please always refer to the Articles of Faith and Biblical distinctives of Baptists when you study these materials. (2) This lesson is part of the projected 300 plus lessons. From time to time, the lessons will be updated, revised, combined, formatted, and edited to comply with the VOA Simplified English word list. Later on, these lessons will be categorized, numbered sequentially, and made available as PDF downloads.

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