Should we go door-to-door?

An analysis of the claims of Jehovah’s Witnesses

Table of Contents

Introduction.. 1

The Claims of Jehovah’s Witnesses. 1

Comparison of Watchtower Society Assertions with Fact: 1

Example of Claims in Their Publications. 2

Detailed Historical Documentation & Claims. 3

History of Jehovah’s Witnesses and door to door preaching.. 3

The Past - Absent from the beginning. 3

1922 - Rutherford Declares Door-to-Door Work & Timesheets to be Necessary. 3

1923 – Separating Sheep from Goats by Going Door-to-Door. 7

1925 – Taking Over the Watch Tower Society to Control What is Taught Door-to-Door. 12

1925 – Blaming Members for the failed door-to-door teachings of the Watchtower Society. 13

1928 – Trying to Connect the Door-to-Door Idea to Prophecy. 14

1928 – No Quotas Required. 17

1943 – Door-to-Door Activity is a Requirement of God Himself with Specific Quotas. 18

1961 – Averages and requirements dropped significantly. 21

1975 – God has never required quotas. 22

1995 – It is stated that separating sheep and goats will happen much later. 23

Present Time - Creative Hour Counting by Members. 26

Biblical conflict with the requirements to go door-to-door & the message presented by Jehovah’s Witesses  27

Luke 10:7 – Jesus told his followers not to go house-to-house. 27

Luke 17:20-23 Tells us to not follow people who claim to know when and where Jesus has returned. 27

Luke 21: 7-9 Tells us to not follow people that tell us the end is near. 27

Ephesians 4:11-12 – Paul states that not every Christian should evangelize. 27

Jesus is not mentioned ever going door to door in his ministry. 27

Evangelists in the New Testament all taught from a house church, rather than going door-to-door. 27

A diiffernt Gospel - What is to be taught when evangelizing?. 29

Claims about door-to-door preaching.. 40

Jesus taught door-to-door. 40

Jesus instructed others to go door-to-door. 42

Jesus sent people by twos to preach door to door. 43

Jesus has commanded us to go door-to door. 44

Acts 2:46 is about preaching door-to-door. 45

Acts 2:46 – Quote from The Wesleyan Bible Commentary. 47

Acts 5:42 is about preaching door-to-door. 50

Acts 20:20 is about preaching door-to-door. 52

Acts 20:20 – Quote from Word Pictures in the New Testament 55

Quote from Matthew Henry. 57

No one else preaches door-to-door throughout the world, and this identifies Jehovah’s Witnesses as God’s only servants. 58

House to House work is very effective for Jehovah’s Witnesses. 59

Angels are directing the door to door preaching work. 61

Preaching door-to-door is a requiremnent for salvation. 61

Possibly Abandoning This Teaching.. 63

What if you disagree with the Watchtower Society about door-to-door evangelism?. 64

Questions to ask Jehovah’s Witnesses. 66

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Introduction

The Claims of Jehovah’s Witnesses

Jehovah's Witnesses (a.k.a. the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society) make the following claims, and have written several justifications about them which sound very scholarly and convincing at first glance.   However, we will see that they contradict scripture, and even their own writings.

The claims & actions:

1.      The Society claims that door-to-door preaching is a commandment and requirement given by Jesus.

2.      The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society claims that no one else preaches the gospel door-to-door like they do.

3.      The Watchtower Society claims that door-to-door preaching identifies them as God’s only servants. 

4.      The Society claims that their preaching is occurring in “all the inhabited earth,” fulfilling prophecy. 

5.      The society claims that door-to-door preaching is very effective for them.

 

Comparison of Watchtower Society Assertions with Fact:

Watchtower Society

Reality

Door-to-door preaching is a commandment and requirement given by Jesus.

Within the scriptures, Jesus only gives one instruction to evangelists regarding door-to-door activity.  His commandment is that once they pick a house for their base of operations, they are not go house-to-house.

 

Within the scriptures, preaching to believers was performed from within select houses, not door-to-door.  There is no record of any early church member or apostle going door-to-door.

 

The claimed father of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Charles Taze Russell, never mentioned going door-to-door, and there is no record of him or his followers doing so.

No one else preaches door-to-door like Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Other organizations preach door-to-door, such as the Mormons.  Mormons may dedicate two years of their life to constant door-to-door activities, as opposed to the average ten hours per month of a Jehovah’s Witness.

Dorr-to_door preaching is one thing that identifies Jehovah’s Witnesses as God’s only servants.

The “preaching” is actually only an attempt to persuade others to become a Jehovah’s Witness and to distribute literature.  The gospel, as described in the Bible, is not what is presented in door-to-door activity.  Thus, they are preaching “a different gospel.”

 

Because door-to-door activity was never prescribed by Jesus or elsewhere in the Bible, this activity has no assosication with who God’s servernts are.

 

Because Jesus’ instruction for evangelists was to not go door-to-door, it is arguable that this activity is defying Jesus’ instructions.

Preaching is occurring in “all the inhabited earth,” fulfilling prophecy. 

The society’s own publications show large areas of the world where they are not preaching.

Door-to-door preaching is very effective for them.

The society’s own statistics show that their door-to-door preaching is very ineffective.  It takes over one hundred years of door-to-door preaching activity to gain even one member.

 

 

Example of Claims in Their Publications

Does God really care about us?: If so, why does he permit suffering? Will it ever end?.
(p. 30). (2001). New York, N.Y: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

 


Detailed Historical Documentation & Claims

History of Jehovah’s Witnesses and door to door preaching

The Past - Absent from the beginning

Most Jehovah’s Witnesses would be surprised to learn that the person they credit as their founder never mentioned door-to-door activity, and there is no record of him ever practicing it.  Charles Taze Russell, never mentioned going door-to-door, or timesheets.  There are no mentions of it in The Watchtower or any other publications during his leadership.

1922 - Rutherford Declares Door-to-Door Work & Timesheets to be Necessary

In September 1992, at an eight-day convention at Cedar Point, Ohio, Rutherford, launched a series of major international conventions under the theme "Advertise the King and Kingdom."  He taught that the primary duty of all Bible Students was to become "publicity agents,” especially in the form of door-to-door evangelism by distributing the Society's publications.  Rutherford taught that this would be a fulfilment of Matthew 24:14.

From this Watchtower article, we see that the door to door work’s primary goal was to tell people that Jesus “is present, and has been since 1874.”

This “truth” was recanted in 1933, changing the date of Jesus’ second coming to 1914, since the associated predicted events did not occur.  Nevertheless, the door to door preaching continued, just with a different message.

(1933, December 1). The Watchtower, p. 362

 

In addition to preaching that Jesus has already returned in 1874, they were also teaching that the Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and other prophets would be resurrected in 1925.  Also, that a great many of the people living then would never die, as Armageddon was coming very soon. They preached door to door that these were not their own ideas, but information that had come from God.

Rutherford, J. (1920). Millions now living will never die! (pp. 89-90).
Brooklyn, N.Y.: International Bible Students Association.

(1922, July 15). The Watchtower, p. 218

Interestingly, even though they claimed that the 1925 and 1914 dates were of equal certainty, they never recanted the 1914 date assertions, even after the 1925 predictions failed.

(1922, May 15). The Watchtower, p. 150

 

The door to door preaching work had been mentioned a few years earlier, but was not really requied.

In this 1920 edition of Our Kingdom Ministry, followers were given sample conversations to guide them in presenting the idea that many people currently living will never die, and that major events will occur in 1925.  Of course, the pitch includes an attempt to sell publications.

(1920, October). Kingdom Ministry

 

The news that Jesus “is present, and has been since 1874” is a teaching that was recanted in 1933. Thus, the main prupose of the new door to door teaching had been to spread a false chronology or prophecy.

(1933, December 1). The Watchtower, p. 362

1923 – Separating Sheep from Goats by Going Door-to-Door

Rutherford introduced the idea that there were two classes of people on earth: goats and sheep.   He declaired that the door-to-door work of Jehovah’s Witnesses was fulfilling the parable found in Matthew 25:31-32, since Jesus had supposedly already come in the year 1874.  This was to be God’s judgement against the many churches of Christ (Christendom), and essentially, everyone except the Jehovah’s Witnesses would be condemned.  Thus, it was urgent that all people, especially those that calimed to be Christians but were not Jehovah’s Witnesses, were to be converted before the little remaining time ran out.  Jehovah’s Witnesses were supposedly fulfilling this prophecy (really a parable), because they had been selected in 1918 by Jesus as His organization on earth.

When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:   And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: (Matthew 25:31-32 KJV)

                (1923, October 15). The Watchtower, p. 308

Note that it is clearly stated by Rutherford in this article that this separation process was occurring after the return of Jesus, but before His millennial reign would begin.

(1923, October 15). The Watchtower, p. 309

(1923, October 15). The Watchtower, p. 310

This teaching that door-to-door preaching and conversion was fulfilling prophecy by separating Jehovah’s Witnesses (sheep) from all other religions and churches (goats) continued throughout the 1980s.  The date of Jesus supposed invisible return had been changed from 1874 to 1914, but the basic teaching remained the same.

The main points of what was being taught were essentially:

·         Jesus has returned

·         The great tribulation is eminent

·         People must become Jehovah’s Witnesses before the great tribulation starts, or God will destroy them

·         The door-to-door work of Jehovah’s Witnesses is helping Jesus and the angels to separate the sheep from the goats.

·         The goats are those that don’t want to become Jehovah’s Witnesses and thus reject “the truth.”

 

Organized to accomplish our ministry. (1989). (p. 7-8).  Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

However, previous to 1923, the parable of the sheep and goats had a completely different explanation. From 1881 – 1914, the Watchtower proclaimed that the parable was about events that would occur after or during Christ’s millennial reign & there was no mention of judging other Christians or going door-to-door.

(1881, September). The Watchtower, p. 269

This explanation of the sheep and the goats being separated during or after the millennial reign, continued into 1905.

(1905, March 15). The Watchtower, p. 3528

This teaching continued, apparently until Rutherford changed it in 1923.  In 1914, it was still being printed.

1925 – Taking Over the Watch Tower Society to Control What is Taught Door-to-Door

Rutherford had many internal opposers.  By 1925, this opposition peaked, as his predictions for 1925 had obviously failed. 

(1984, October 1). The Watchtower, p.24

In 1925 he gained full control over what doctrines would be taught in Watch Tower Society publications, overruling the refusal by the five-man Editorial Committee to publish his article, "Birth of the Nation", which contained significant doctrinal changes. Rutherford later claimed Satan had "tried to prevent the publication of that article ... but failed in that effort."  By firing the Editorial Committee, who had opposed Rutherford’s publication of this article, it was stated that not “the Lord himself is running his organization.”

 

(1938, June 15). The Watchtower, p. 185

It seems a little presumptuous that Ruthererford being the sole editor was equated with “the Lord himself is running his organization.”

1925 – Blaming Members for the failed door-to-door teachings of the Watchtower Society

After preaching this message and predictions door to door, the Jehovah’s Witnesses membership was blamed on the failed predictions, rather than the leadership that made and promoted them.

(1925, February 15). The Watchtower, p. 57

Similarly, after printing a book titled “Millions Now Living Will Never Die,” the Watchtower Society stated that the message of resurrected persons in 1925, which was being preached door to door, was merely “an expressed opinion.”   The main topic of the book, that people then living would not die also proved to be false, but was never recanted.  Instead, in future years, they game up with excuses to extend the number of years by about thirty with their “generation and contemporaties” teaching.

(1926, July 1). The Watchtower, p. 196

1928 – Trying to Connect the Door-to-Door Idea to Prophecy

In 1928, Rutherford began to teach that the Cedar Point convention and the events resulting from it fulfilled the prophecy of the 1,290 days at Daniel 12:11. 

(1929, December 15). The Watchtower, p. 375

This is problematic for three reasons.  Prior to this announcement, the 1,290 days were announced as representing 1,290 years (rather than days) that extended from 539 AD to 1829 AD, marking the start of the Millerite movement and the message of Christ’s second coming. 

(1914, November 1). The Watchtower, p. 5565


 

The second problem is the alleged start date of this prophecy.  It is supposed to have started witeh the League of Nations, which was set up in January 1920.

Revelation: Its grand climax at hand! (1988). (p. 241). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

To fix this problem, they stated that the prophecy started when the League of Nations was proposed, which was December 1918.  This didn’t make the math work out either, so they selected the date of January 18, 1919, when the ambassador from the Federal Council of Churches at the Paris peace conference began to present “the actions of the executive committee which they were instructed to convey to the peace conference.”

Your will be done on earth. (1958). (p. 208) New York: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.

The final problem is that the Cedar Point convention ran from September 5-13, 1922.   The proposed explanation if 1,290 days was supposed to mark the time between the creation of the League of Nations and the Cedar Point convention.  However, these events, even with the creative selection of a starting date were separated by 1,326-1,334 days.

They creatively worked around this discrepancy by converting the number of days to lunar months, then converting to solar months to change the number of days from 1,290 to a closer number.  Essentially, they changed the number of days stated in the Bible to a different number of days.  In later publications, they simply glossed over the discrepancy in the number of days.

(1993, November 1). The Watchtower, p. 11

After all of this creative work to make the date math add up, a different starting date was chosen, and the end date was chosen as “the autumn” of 1922, which was “right about the time” that the Cedar Point convention was held.

Pay attention to Daniel's prophecy. (1999). (p. 300). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

Of course, the number of days is still nowhere close to the 1,290 stated in the Bible. From January 18, 1919 to the first day of autumn (September 23, 1922) is 1,344 days.  At this point, however, anyone studying the matter would likely be too exhausted and confused to care. 

Clearly, the Watchtower Society made a creative and exhaustive attempt to try to make the dates fill the prophecy, but anyove that investigates this issue will discover that the math doesn’t work out.

 

 

 

 


 

1928 – No Quotas Required

In 1928, it was clearly stated that no quotas for visits or literature distribution were mandated.  It was further stated that workers should establish their own quotas and report statistics anonymously.

(1928, January 1). Bulletin, p. 3, Watchtower Bible and Tract Society


 

1943 – Door-to-Door Activity is a Requirement of God Himself with Specific Quotas

Rutherford died in 1942.  At this time, there was a lot of dissention within the Jehovah’s Witnesses as to the necessity and effectiveness of door-to-door work.

To firmly put an end to this problem, the Watchtower Society announced that God Himself had not only proclaimed that door-to-door work was necessary, and that timesheets must be kept because a specific quota of hours was prescribed by God.

(1943, July 1) The Watchtower, p.204

(1943, July 1) The Watchtower, p.205

Note the text on page 205: “This expression of the Lord’s will should be the end of all controversy.”  This article was expected to end the internal controversy on this issue among Jehovah’s Witnesses.  Note the quota allegedly commanded by God of 60 hours per month (left column).

(1943, July 1) The Watchtower, p.206

 


 

1961 – Averages and requirements dropped significantly

In spite of God’s alleged commandment and quotas, the 60 hour per week requirement didn’t last.  By 1961, the averages had dropped to 10 hours per month, and this was deemed acceptable.

(1961, June 1). The Watchtower, p. 328

 


 

1975 – God has never required quotas

The May 15, 1975 Watchtower made the statement that there are “no quotas set forth in God’s Word as a minimum preaching requirement.”  This statement was in direct opposition to the 1943 claim that God Himself had established quotas.

(1975, May 15). The Watchtower, p. 312

 

 


 

1995 – It is stated that separating sheep and goats will happen much later

After beginning with the treaching than Matthew 25:31-32 was about an event that would happen at the end of Christ’s millenial rule, changing the teaching in 1923 to state that it was being done in the present day with the assistance and door-to-door work of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and teaching that doctrine for seventy years, the Watchtower society reverted back to their original teaching.

By abandoning this teaching seventy years later, thw Watchtower Society has lost a big part of it’s rationale and urgency for door-to-door activity.   It was supposed to be to help separate the sheep from the goats, so that Jesus could soon pass judgement on everyone that didn’t become a Jehovah’s Witness.  It was very urgent, because this needed to happen before His millennial reign started.

Now, by reverting to their original teaching about this parable as being a prophecy to be carried out at the end of the millennial reign, the door-to-door preaching becomes simply a recruitment effort, rather than something tied to God’s purposes and prophecy.

In 1993, they were still proclaiming that Rutherford properly understood the special meaning of this parable, which meant that Jehovah’s Witnesses had made “a truly significant step in understanding Jehovah’s purpose.”  They boasted that their understanding of this parable enabled them to see that it was necessary to convert people from “the churches of Christendom.”

Jehovah's Witnesses: Proclaimers of God's Kingdom. (1993). (p. 163) Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.


 

Jehovah's Witnesses: Proclaimers of God's Kingdom. (1993). (p. 163) Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.


 

In 1995, there is no mention of the consequeces of changing the mening of this parable, nor is there any mention of the fact that this was a reversion back to the previous teaching.  Instead, the new interpretation was just stated as fact:

(1995, October 15). The Watchtower, p. 25

So, in conclusion, it seems that after teaching that their door-to-door activities were part of separating sheep and goats, and a fulfilment of a parable, Jehovah’s Witnesses now believe what the rest of Christendom has believed for the past 2,000 years or so.

 

 

 


 

Present Time - Creative Hour Counting by Members

Because many Jehovah’s Witnesses do not enjoy going door-to-door, but want to maintain numbers consistant with national averages, they have come up with creative ways to log their hours on the timesheets.  These are some of the creative methods reported by Jehovah’s Witnesses:

Getting on the clock without doing anything

On the way to a meeting, members can drop off tracts at a gas station, or some other location that requires no actual interaction.   They then mark this as the start of their logged time.  They might also make a phone call just before leaving the house to someone that they know is not a Jehovah’s Witness.

Some are known to intentionally go to locations where people will not be at home, or will be otherwise unavailable.

Multiplying Time

Time spent at a house containing multiple people is multiplied by the number of people.  A one-hour Bible study in a househould of 6 would thus equate to six hours of service.

One hour could be spent on writing a letter, and copies of the letter could be mailed to 10 people.  The person would then long 10 hours

Keeping the clock running

After stopping several places, it’s usually time for a break.  If you go to a fast food establishment or coffee house, you can say something about God to the person behind the counter and keep your time going.

Leadership Sharing Tactics

Many new Jehivah’s Witnesses have reported these types of strategies being passed on to them by their local elders.  They seem to take pride in finding legalistic strategies for beating the system.

 

 


 

Biblical conflict with the requirements to go door-to-door & the message presented by Jehovah’s Witesses

Luke 10:7 – Jesus told his followers not to go house-to-house

And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. (Luke 10:7 KJV)

Luke 17:20-23 Tells us to not follow people who claim to know when and where Jesus has returned

And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.  And he said unto the disciples, The days will come, when ye shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of man, and ye shall not see it. And they shall say to you, See here; or, see there: go not after them, nor follow them. (Luke 17:20-23 KJV)

Jehovah’s Witnesses tell us that Jesus has returned in 1914, but invisibly.

Luke 21: 7-9 Tells us to not follow people that tell us the end is near

And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass? And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them. (Luke 21:7-8 KJV)

Jehovah’s Witnesses tell us that their organization is our mediator (the Christ), and that the time draws near.

Ephesians 4:11-12 – Paul states that not every Christian should evangelize

And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: (Ephesians 4:11-12 KJV)

Jehovah’s Witnesses tell us that they go door-to-door beause it it what all followers are commanded by God to do.

Jesus is not mentioned ever going door to door in his ministry

And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. (Matthew 4:23 KJV)

And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. (Luke 2:23)

The high priest then asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his doctrine. Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. (John 18:19-20 KJV)

Why is there no mention of Jesus ever going door-to-door or instructing his followers to do so?

Evangelists in the New Testament all taught from a house church, rather than going door-to-door

Saul faound them in their house churches, not going publicly door-to-door.

As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison. (Acts 8:3 KJV)

Paul and Silas wend to a house church to find their brethren, as they were not out travelling door-to-door

And they went out of the prison, and entered into the house of Lydia: and when they had seen the brethren, they comforted them, and departed. (Acts 16:40, KJV)

Paul and Silas are not seized in the open streets, but rather at a house church, because they were not going door-to-door.

But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people. (Acts 17:5 KJV)

Paul and Silas taught the Corinthians from Justus’ house & the synagogue.

And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man's house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue.  And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized. (Acts 18: 7-8)

Paul’s company stays in the house of a believer in Caesarea, tarrying there for days rather than going door-to-door.

And the next day we that were of Paul's company departed, and came unto Caesarea: and we entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, which was one of the seven; and abode with him. And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy. And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judaea a certain prophet, named Agabus. (Acts 21: 8-10 KJV)

Paul taught from his house, and people came to him, rather than going door-to-door.

And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came in unto him, Preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him. (Acts 28:30-31 KJV)

Evangelists taught from house churches, rather than going door-to-door

Things were done this way because Jesus commanded in Luke 10:1-7 that a house be selected in each town or area & be used as a base for teaching. Note that the passage ends with "Go not from house to house." The Greek wording here is “οἰκίας εἰς οἰκίαν” (house to house). The Watchtower's interlinear translation shows the phrases in Acts to mean "according to house,"and "according to houses," but renders them in English as "house-to-house" anyways. So, the Jehovah’s Witness doctrine is that salvation requires you to do exactly what Jesus said not to do.

Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my well-beloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ. (Romans 16:5 KJV)

Salute Apelles approved in Christ. Salute them which are of Aristobulus' household. (Romans 16:10 KJV)

Salute Herodion my kinsman. Greet them that be of the household of Narcissus, which are in the Lord. (Romans 16:11 KJV)

The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house. (1 Corinthians 16:19 KJV)

All the saints salute you, chiefly they that are of Caesar's household. (Phillipians 4:22 KJV)

Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house.  (Colossians 4:15 KJV)

The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus; for he oft refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain: (2 Timothy 1:16)

Salute Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus. (2 Timothy 4:19)

And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house: (Philemon 1:2 KJV)

 


 

A diiffernt Gospel - What is to be taught when evangelizing?

 

We are told to not allow those into our house that perform evil deeds by spreading a different doctrine or gospel than that of the apostles.

If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds. (2 John 1:10-11 KJV)

We are told that even if an angel presents a different gospel, we are not to receive it.

I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. (Galatians 1:6-9 KJV)

So, what is this doctrine that the apostles taught that we are not to stray from?

Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;   By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:  And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:  After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.  And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.  For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.  But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.(1 Corinthians 15:1-11 KJV)

 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. (Romans 10:8-13 KJV)

So, the main points of this gospel are:

·         Christ died for our sins, according to the scriptures

·         He was buried & rose again on the third day

·         He was then seen by many people

·         Shomever calls upon Jesus shall be saved

 

What is the gospel of the Jehovah’s Witnesses?

·         Jesus has returned in 1914

·         Jesus appointed Jehovah’s Witnesses as His only organization and mouthpiece

·         The world is ending very soon

·         Those that don’t join the Jehovah’s Witnesses will be destroyed by Jesus at Armageddon

·         Jesus is not your mediator with God, the Watchtower Society is

This is clearly a different Gospel than what was taught by the disciples.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses themselves claim that they preach a different gospel:

(1981, May 1). The Watchtower, p. 17

 

 

 

(2006, February 1). The Watchtower, p. 25

 


 

Jesus has returned in 1914


The Bible says instead:

Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Behold, I have told you before. (Matthew 24:23-25 KJV)

But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. (Matthew 24:36 KJV)

Jesus appointed Jehovah’s Witnesses as His Organization and Mouthpiece


This can’t be so because they taught that Jesus had returned in 1874 until 1932.  They aso taught that their door-to-door work was a fulfilment of the parable in Matthew 25:31-32, declairing this to be wrong in 1995.  In 1943, they announced that God had established quotas for door-to-door preaching, and then announced in 1975 that there were no such quotas.  How could Jesus have appointed them as His mouthpiece when most of the things they taught before and after this alleged 1918 appointment have been proven false and recanted by the Watchtower Society?

The world is ending very soon (or has already ended) & will be transformed into a paradise

(2011, December 15). The Watchtower, p. 2

 

(1974, January 8) Awake!. p. 2

(1974, January 1). The Watchtower, p.2

(1930, January 1). The Watchtower, p. 1

 

Those that don’t join the Jehovah’s Witnesses will be destroyed by Jesus at Armageddon

(1989, September 1). The Watchtower, p. 19

This teaching begain with Rutherford around 1923.  He began by stating that the clergy of any other church would not be saved, likening them to the devil.  He describes all that oppose his teachings as “a stubborn, self-willed, unscrupulous class of men.”

(1923, October 15). The Watchtower, p. 310

Ruthorford later declared this judgement upon all who opposed his ideas and teachings, labeling them “apostates.”  Of course, all Jehovah’s Witnesses today would be labeled as apostates by this definiation, as they have recanted many of Rutherford’s teachings.

In 1930, Rutherford called himself the “select servent,” and anyone who opposed his ideas was the “evil servant”   or the “man of sin.”  He explained that these people, whom God would destroy, were opposed to the “truth” that Jesus had returned in 1875, and the then-current teachings of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.  Thus, they were part of “Satan’s organization.”

(1930, September 1930). The Watchtower, p. 276

Of course, one of the main opposers, as mentioned in the same article, were the past members of the Watchtower Society that had left when the predictions of 1914 failed to occur.  They had created their own organizations or joined other churches, and continued to proclaim Rutherford and his followers to be false teachers and prophets.  Rutherford had to have some kind of response to this, so he simply declared that the 1914 expectations were those of the members, rather than the teachings of the Watchtower Society (a false claim).

(1930, September 1930). The Watchtower, p. 277

Jehovah’s Witnesses are taught to lie, or at least obscure the truth when this issue comes up in discussion.  They clearly believe that they are the only people living now that will find salvation, with the exception of those now living that soon become Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Note the crafty wording in this 1970 article, which was handed out door-to-door, which fails to clearly state that “turn to God” means becoming a Jehovah’s Witness and that those who are “not now Jehovah’s Witnesses” may be saved, because there is the possibility that they may become one later:

 


 

(1970, April 15). The Watchtower, p. 247

This 2002 brochure is also craftily-worded.  It states that some people may be resurrected and have an opportunity for life (a chance to become Jehovah’s Witnesses).   It also states that people now living may “yet take a stand for truth and righteousness” (become a Jehovah’s Witness).

Jehovah's Witnesses: Who are They? What do They Believe? (2000). (p. 29).
Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

 

Most Jehovah’s Witnesses do not know that their founder, Charles Taze Russell, was completely opposed to the idea that any one organization could have exclusive access to God or salvation.

Jehovah's Witnesses: Proclaimers of God's Kingdom. (1993). (p. 45). Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

 

(1894, December 1). The Watchtower, p. 1743

 


 

Jesus is not your Mediator with God, the Watchtower Society is

 

From the Bible:

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. (1 Timothy 2:5-6)

From the Watchtower Society:

Worldwide Security Under the Prince of Peace. (1986). (p. 10). Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York

Charles Taze Russell was apparently of a different opinion on this matter, as he wrote:

Studies in the Scriptures, Volume 6: The New Creation  (1913). (p. 386). Brooklyn, NY: International Bible Students Association


 

Claims about door-to-door preaching

Jesus taught door-to-door

Insight on the Scriptures (Vol. 2). (p. 673). (1988). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, International Bible Students Association.

None of the cited verses have anything to do with Jesus teaching door-to-door.

And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: (Matthew 5:1 KJV)

And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him.  And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. (Matthew 9:9-10 KJV)

And when Jesus departed thence, two blind men followed him, crying, and saying, Thou son of David, have mercy on us. And when he was come into the house, the blind men came to him: and Jesus saith unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea, Lord (Matthew 9:27-28 KJV)

And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. (Matthew 9:35)

In Matthew 5:1, there is no mention of any houses.

In Matthew 9:10, Jesus goes to a house for dinner & many people follow him to hear his teachings.

In Matthew 9:28, Jesus goes into “the house,” which was apparently someone who showed him hospitality, and the blind men followed him.  If he had been going door-to-door, they would not have needed to follow him.

In Matthew 9:35, there is not mention of Jesus going into any house.  It states that he travelled to many cities and villages and taught in the synagogues.

Jesus’ behavior is bessed summed up in his own words and instructions in the next chapter of Matthew, which involves finding a single house in a town or village, accepting their hospitality, and not going to any other houses.   Note Jesus’ specific instructions to not go house to house:

And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence.  And when ye come into an house, salute it.  And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. (Matthew 10:11-14 KJV)

And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house.  And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again.  And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. (Luke 10: 5-7)


 

Jesus’ instructions in these verses are very specific:

·         Go to a town, village, or area

·         Enquire who is worthy & abide at their house

·         Remain in this house, accepting their hospitality

·         Do not go from house to house while you are in a town or village

 

It seem silly that the Watchtower Society would make the claim that Jesus taught door-to-door when there is no scriptural evidence of this type of behavior, and the fact that Jesus Himself told others that when they were evangelizing that they should not go from one house to the next within a city or village.

 

 

 

 


 

Jesus instructed others to go door-to-door

Insight on the Scriptures (Vol. 2). (p. 673). (1988). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, International Bible Students Association.

Here, the claim is made that finding a “deserving” person must involve a door-to-door search.  The word in the text is ἐξετάσατε (exetasate), which means to find, locate, “inquire about”, or “search out.”  There is no reason to believe that finding a “worthy” person would require a door to door search. 

Translation

Rendering

ASV

search out who in it is worthy

KJV

enquire who in it is worthy

NIV

search there for some worthy person

RSV

find out who is worthy in it

TLB

search for a godly man

VOICE

look for someone who is trustworthy

WYC

ask ye who therein is worthy

 

By the Watchtower’s logic, finding a good barber, doctor, or blacksmith in a town would also require a door to door search, rather than just asking around.

The Watchtower Society citest Luke 9: 1-6

Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. And he said unto them, Take nothing for your journey, neither staves, nor scrip, neither bread, neither money; neither have two coats apiece. And whatsoever house ye enter into, there abide, and thence depart. And whosoever will not receive you, when ye go out of that city, shake off the very dust from your feet for a testimony against them. And they departed, and went through the towns, preaching the gospel, and healing every where. (Luke 9: 1-6 KJV)

However, they seem to have ignored the rest of Jesus’ instructions on the matter, which specifically say to not go house to house.

And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house.  And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again.  And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. (Luke 10: 5-7)

Citing Luke as evidence that Jesus instructed his followers to go door to door is obviously deceptive, when you keep reading the passage through Luke 10:7.   This is an obvious misrepresentation of the scripture.

Jesus sent people by twos to preach door to door

Insight on the Scriptures (Vol. 2). (p. 673). (1988). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, International Bible Students Association.

Either this is a deliberate deception, or the person making this statement didn’t bother to read the scripture cited.   If they had, they would have seen the specific instruction in Luke 10:7 to no got house to house.

After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves. Carry neither purse, nor scrip, nor shoes: and salute no man by the way. And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again. And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. (Luke 10:1-7 KJV)

The Watchtower Society’s statement is that they were to “contact people at their homes.”  Instead, we see that the scripture instructs the, to select a single hme for hospitality while visiting a town or village.   That single house was to be used as a base for their teaching.


 

Jesus has commanded us to go door-to door

(1960, November 1). The Watchtower, p. 648

This is very interesting, because there is nowhere in scripture that preacing clearly occurred door-to-door.   There is certainly no such commandment in the Bible.  In fact, Jesus only made one command regarding such things, which was to not go from house to house.

And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. (Luke 10:1-7 KJV)

 


 

Acts 2:46 is about preaching door-to-door

(1991, January 15). The Watchtower, p.11

This passage is about a group new Christians that shared all things, including food, and ate in each other’s houses.  It doesn’t say anything about preaching door-to-door to unbelievers.

Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, (Acts 2: 41-46 KJV)

In the Greek, the phrase translated here as “house to house” is “κατ’ οἶκον.”  The first word, “κατ” (kat’, Strong’s word #2596) means “in.”  The second word, “οἶκον” (oikon, Strong’s word #3624) means “house” or “a dwelling.”

In their own interlinear translation, the Jehovah’s Witnesses show that the phrase means “according to house,” render it as “in private homes,” and state in the footnotes: “house to house.”


 

The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures (p. 545). (1985). Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

In their 2013 New Workd Translation, they render the text as: “in different homes,” and clearly show that they were eating in each other’s homes, not the homes of unbelievers.

New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures: Rendered from the original languages. (2013). (p. 1463).
USA: Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania.


 

Acts 2:46 – Quote from The Wesleyan Bible Commentary

(1991, January 15). The Watchtower, p.11

This quotation certainly would make the reader believe that Paul had told people tp preach door-to-door and and “discharhed his responsibilty both to Jews and Gantiles at Ephesus.”

When we look at the reference, we see that the first part of the quotation, regarding house-to-house dissemination of the gospel is not related to the second part of the quote regarding a responsibility given to Jews and Gentiles at Ephesus.  The second part of the quote is actually 4 paragraphs later.


 

Earle, R., Carter, C. W., Earle, R., Blaney, H. J., & Carter, C. W. (1966).
The Wesleyan Bible commentary. Matthew - Acts. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. pp. 642-643

The real question is of the “house-to-house” dissemination was done door-to-door for the sake of non-Christians, or it is referring to movement from one house church to the next.

The commentary on Acts 5:42 is not much help in clarifying this:


 

Earle, R., Carter, C. W., Earle, R., Blaney, H. J., & Carter, C. W. (1966).
The Wesleyan Bible commentary. Matthew - Acts. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. p. 523

So, the work cited does not clearly state what “house-to-house” means.  It could mean “within house churches” or “door-to-door.”  The commentary does not even clarify if this activity was directed at parties that expressed interest in the Gospel, strangers, or interested Christians.  

It is misleading for the Watchtower Society to imply that the words of this commentary refer to “door-to-door” preaching to non-Christians.

 


 

Acts 5:42 is about preaching door-to-door

(2004, March 15). The Watchtower, p. 12

In reality, this verse is stating that Peter and the other apostles were teaching publicly in the temple and in house churches. In the Greek, the phrase translated here as “house to house” is “κατ’ οἶκον.”  The first word, “κατ” (kat’, Strong’s word #2596) means “in.”  The second word, “οἶκον” (oikon, Strong’s word #3624) means “house” or “a dwelling.”

Various translations render it as follows:

Translation

Rendering

ASV

at home

KJV

in every house

NIV

house to house

RSV

at home

TLB

in their home Bible classes

VOICE

in their homes

WYC

about houses

 

All of these transtaltions are correct, but the meaning of “house to house” does not mean “door to door.”  Instead, it means “within house churches and Bible classes.”  There were many house churches, so they went from one to the next.

In the Watchtower Society’s own interlinear translation, they show the phrase to mean “according to house,” yet still render it “house to house.”

The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures (p. 545). (1985). Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.


 

Acts 20:20 is about preaching door-to-door

(1991, January 15) The Watchtower, p. 11

There are two parts to this claim: Acts 20:20 shows that Paul preached door-to-door, and that he visited nearly every house in Ephesus.

In reality, this verse is stating that Paul was teaching publicly, and in the homes of the elders of the Church. In the Greek, the phrase translated here as “house to house” is “κατ’ οἶκον.”  The first word, “κατ” (kat’, Strong’s word #2596) means “in.”  The second word, “οἶκον” (oikon, Strong’s word #3624) means “house” or “a dwelling.”

Various translations render it as follows:

Translation

Rendering

ASV

from house to house

KJV

from house to house

NIV

from house to house

RSV

from house to house

TLB

in your homes

VOICE

in your homes

WYC

by houses

 

All of these transtaltions are correct, but the meaning of “house to house” does not mean “door to door.”  Instead, it means “within the homes of the elders of the church.”

In the Watchtower Society’s own interlinear translation, they show the phrase to mean “according to house,” yet still render it “house to house.”

The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures (p. 545). (1985). Brooklyn, NY: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

To see the context clearly, we need to read the previous three verses. It immediately becomes apparent that he is talking about the homes of the elders of the church.  This is obvious, even in the Watchtower Society’s own New World Translation.

New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures. (2013). (p. 1492). Brooklyn, NY:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

The proposal that Paul preached door-to-door to nearly every house in Ephesus within three years requires a lot of imagination.  Depending on which scholar’s estimates you use, the population of Ephesus at that time was anywhere between 33,600[1] and 225,000.[2]  Ephesus contained a theatre that was capable of holding 25,000 spectators alone.[3]  Even if we go with the lowest estimate, we have 33,600 people within the city.   The inhabited area has been estimated at 550 acres, up to 1,030 acres.

If we go with the lowest possible estimates (33,600 people within 550 acres), then Paul would have needed to preach to over 35 people per day, assuming that he went door to door for three years and six days per week.  If the average household was a large one of six people, then he would have needed to visit six households per day, nonstop.  Keep in mind that this is using the lowest estimate given by scholars.  If we use the average estimate, we have around 129,000 people, which requires 137 people per day and about 23 households per day.   It requires a lot of imagination to believe that Paul visited 23 households per day for three years, six days a week, and did meangingful evangelism without any magazines or other material to leave behind.


 

Acts 20:20 – Quote from Word Pictures in the New Testament

Insight on the Scriptures (Vol. 2). (p. 674). (1988). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, International Bible Students Association.

According to the Watchtower Society, Acts 20:20 is about preaching door to door & this is supported by Dr. A. T. Robertson.

In reality, the sentence following the part quoted by the Watchtower Society clarifies things.

Robertson, A. T. (1930). Word pictures in the New Testament (Vol. III). (p. 225).
Nashville: Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Dr. Robertson is stating that house to house meant from one house church to the next.  He was conducting church business.  In his discusson of 1 Corinthians 16:19, he elaborates on this idea.

Robertson, A. T. (1930). Word pictures in the New Testament (Vol. IV). (pp. 108-109).
Nashville: Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.

This, the “house to house” preaching is from one house church to the next, not door to door, as the Watchtower Society implies that this author meant.  Clearly, they have misrepresented this author.

 

 

 


 

Quote from Matthew Henry

2006, The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived, Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, p. 72

This quotation is used to support the idea that seventy followers of Jesus preached door-to-door.

This selective quotation is taken out of context, and does not support the idea of door-to-door preaching.   It is a commentary on Luke 10.  It is talking about how house churches were used instead of synagoges as a central location for each town.  The following sentence is: “Christ’s church was at first very much a church in the house.”  To remove all dobut about the topic, the scripture on the sasme page that this quotation was taken from reads: “Go not from house to house.”  Matthew Henry’s comments are a statement that they taught within a single house at each city they entered.  Thus, they taught house-to-house, not door-to-door.  This is a misleading use of the author’s words.

1836, The Comprehensive Commentary on the Holy Bible: Matt.-John, Scott and Henry, Dessend and Co., p. 487


 

No one else preaches door-to-door throughout the world, and this identifies Jehovah’s Witnesses as God’s only servants

Does God Really Care About Us? (2001). (p. 30). ). Brooklyn, NY, U.S.A.:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York, International Bible Students Association.

There are two components to this claim: that no one else preaches door-to-door, and that they are preaching throughout the world.

The first claim is that no one else preaches door-to-door.   This is obviously false.   The Mormons still require young men to preach door-to-door continuously for a period of two years.   Since they are preaching for far more than 10 hours per month during those two years, their hours may even exceed those of active Jehovah’s Witnesses.  Other churches and organizations have engaged in door-to-door efferts, but certainly not as extensively.

The second claim is that their preaching occurs throughout the world.   Is is a false claim.  This map illustrates many countries where little or no preaching occurs.

Notice that this is not at all unique.  This map shows similar coverage for Seventh-Day Adventists.

 

Obviously, their claim about preaching worldwide is false.

 

House to House work is very effective for Jehovah’s Witnesses

(1991, January 15). The Watchtower, p. 10

This claim does not match their published statistics.   According to the 2016 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses, they spent 1,933,473,727 hours preaching door-to-door in 2015.   This is fewer hours spent than in 2014.  There were 260,273 baptisms or new members.  Asssuming that half of these baptisms were due to door-to-door preaching, instead of relationships with family members and close friends, it required 14,857 hours of door-to-door preaching to gain a single member.  Since the official average for a Jehovah’s Witness is 10 hours of preaching per month, it would thus take over 123 years of door-to-door preaching to gain a single member.   This does not sound like it is very “effective.”


 

The door-to-door work seems to be increasingly ineffective, as shown by this chart:


Angels are directing the door to door preaching work

If angels are really directing their door-to-door preaching work, why has it been so ineffective?  Why would angels assist in something that was started in 1922 for the purpose of spreading a false Bible chronology about Jesus returning in 1874?

 

Preaching door-to-door is a requiremnent for salvation

This makes no sense at all.  If door-to-door preaching is a requirement for salvation, why isn’t it mentioned anywhere in the Bible?  Why didn’t earlt church fathers write about it?  Why didn’t Charles Taze Russell practice it it teach about it?

Notice that they lie about the matter on their publc website, but explain their real attitudes in Our Kingdom Ministry, a publication that they hand out weekly only to members.



 

Possibly Abandoning This Teaching

Many of the Watchtower Society’s past teachings have been changed or abandoned.  Whenever this occurs, the Watchtower Society claims that it has received “new light” from God.  The most notable organization that has abandoned their teachings is the Worldwide Church of God, publishers of the magazine The Plain Truth. This magazine-heavy group’s doctrines were very similar to the Jehovah’s Witnesses, and it abandoned many of its teachings between 1986 and 1995.  

With many Jehovah’s Witnesses dropping to 1 hour or less per month, it is possible that major changes will need to be made soon.  If not because of a distaste for door-to-door evangelism, distribution of materials door-to-door may become necessary for financial reasons.

2015 seems to be an important year, as the Watchtower Society found itself in a financial crisis.   During this year, they reduced the number of magazine issues per year by half.  They also laid off one third of their workers at headquarters and suspended or cancelled many construction projects worldwide.  In the May 2015 issue of JW Broadcasting, Governing Body member Stephen Lett explained that their organization is financially in trouble.  He called for more money from members by stating that “we can honor Jehovah with our valuable things, including the financial support of True Worship.”

Since magazines are the main leave-behind item of their members, reducing the number of monthly issues by one half may indicate that big changes are on the way.

Also in 2015, the Watchtower Society began posting videos on their website monthly, calling it “JW Broadcasting.”  This may be a possible replacement for the door-to-door materials.

Finally, members were encouraged to purchase tablets or portable computers, so that they can share their message without distributing costly printed materials.  This was combined with increased emphasis on directing people to their official website, rather than distributing a variety of publications.

A letter was send to all congregations, asking them to stop saving any money and send their savings into the corporate office.

What if you disagree with the Watchtower Society about door-to-door evangelism?

According to the 1954 court testimony of H.C. Covington, vice-president of the Watchtower Society, it doesn’t matter what the facts show.  If you are a Jehovah’s Witness, you must agree with their teachings, even if they are shown to be false.   Failing to do so, even if they are wrong, makes you worthy of being disfellowshipped, and of death.  By “death,” they imply exclusion of any opportunity for salvation or everlasting life.

(1954, November) Pursuers Proof of Douglas Walsh Vs. The Right Honorable James Latham Clyde, M.P.,
Court Transcript, The Scottish Record Office

 

 

If you find that anything stated in the Watchtower Magazine is incorrect, including their earlier teachings about God establishing quotas, then you are opposed to God and “not capable of discerning the truth.”

(1931, November 1) The Watchtower, 327

 

(1942, January 1), The Watchtower, 5


 

Questions to ask Jehovah’s Witnesses

1.      A literal tranbslation of of Acts 5:42 and Acts 20:20 yields the phrase “within houses,” yet you assert that it means “door to door.”   How do you explain this difference?

2.      The Watchtower Society asserts that the apostles and early Christians went door-to-door.  However, the Bible gives many examples of early Christians establishing house churches & the apostles wend from house-to-house (meaning one house church to the next).  How do you reconcile the difference between the Watchtower Society’s teachings and the Bible?

3.      If preaching door-to-door is commanded by God and necessary for salvation, why is it not mentioned in anyWatchtower Society publications before 1922?   Why didn’t Russell preach door-to-door or have his followers do so?

4.      How can door-to-door preaching be a sign of the true religion if Jesus’ only instruction regarding such evangelistic matters was for evangelists to find a single house within an area for their base of operations, and to not go door-to-door?

5.      Can you explain why the Watchtower stated in 1928 that God Himself had established specific quotas for door-to-door work, and then stated in 1975 that God had never required quotas?  If God had never established quotas, why was it stated that he did?

6.      Can you explain why door-to-door preaching is still necessary when a key reason that this practice began (fulfillment of Matthew 25:31-32) has been discarded as false teachings by the present-day Watchtower Society?

7.      Can you explain why it is still taught that the start of preaching door-to-door at an Ohio conference is a fulfilment of the 1,290-day prophecy of Daniel 12:11, when the number of days between the events is not the correct number to fulfil the prophecy?  Why have the explained starting and ending dates been changed several times in Watchtower Society publications?

8.      The Watchtower used quotes from the Wesleyan Bible Commentary and Word Pictures in the New Testament to support their asserions that the aposltes preached door-to-door.   The works cited actually state the opposite.   Why would the Watchtower Society knowingly misrepresent these authors?

9.      The things being taught door-to-door are a “different gospel” than what the apostles taught.  The Watchtower Society focuses on the distribution of magazines and pamphlets to teach that Jesus has already returned, that he is not their mediator, and that God will destroy them if they don’t become Jehovah’s Witnesses.  How do you reconcile this with the Bible’s instructions in 2 John 1:10-11 to turn away those that preach “a different Gospel?”

10.  Since many of the key points being presented in door-to-door activity have been recanted by the Watchtower Society, why should we have confidence that the things being presented now, which are not found anywhere in the Bible, are accurate and trustworthy?

11.  One of the main messages spread door-to-door is that “the time is at hand.”  This was even the title of a Watchtower Society book.  However, Luke 21:8 wars is against the many people that shall say “the time is near,” and warns us to “go ye not therefore after them.”  Doesn’t this apply to your teachings?

12.  Why does the Watchtower Society’s website claim that you don’t earn salvation by door-to-door preaching, but your own publication states that it is a requirement for salvation?

 

 

 

 


Notes



[1] Hanson, J. W. (2011). "The Urban System of Roman Asia Minor". In Bowman, Alan; Wilson, Andrew. Settlement, Urbanization, and Population. Oxford Studies on the Roman Economy 2. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. pp. 252–257. ISBN 9780199602353.

[2] Price, Simon (2011). "Estimating Ancient Greek Populations". In Bowman, Alan; Wilson, Andrew. Settlement, Urbanization, and Population. Oxford Studies on the Roman Economy 2. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. p. 18. ISBN 9780199602353.

[3] Ring, Trudy; Salkin, Robert (1995). "Ephesus". International Dictionary of Historic Places: Southern Europe. London: Fitzroy Dearborn. p. 217. ISBN 978-1-884964-02-2.