Tag: error of denominationalism

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 8

The Jehovah’s Witnesses teach that Christ is not the eternal, non-created, being called God that never began and will never end. In their booklet the Kingdom Is at Hand, pp. 46-48, we find this statement. “At the time of His beginning of life He was created by the everlasting God, Jehovah, without the aid or instrumentality of any mother. In other words, He was the first and direct creation of Jehovah God….He was the start of God’s creative work. He was not an incarnation in flesh but was flesh, a human Son of God, a perfect man, no longer a spirit, although having a spiritual or heavenly post and background.” There are endless quotes from these infidels as this. It goes against my nature to have to put this in this bulletin; I just want you to know with what you are dealing, they are NOT friends of Jesus Christ!!
Hebrews 1:3, Paul writes by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit: “who being the brightness (effulgence) of His glory, and the very image of His substance, and upholding all things by the word of His power..” The word being is the same word used in John 8:58. It is the present active participle of eimi, referring to the continuing existence of Christ, NEVER HAVING BEGUN, and NEVER ENDING.
“Brightness”, (effulgence) of His glory…” Brightness, radiance is used of light shining from a luminous body. It represents in the truest sense the apaugasma. Apaugasma is Latin and expresses Christ nature and His acts shining forth the glory, manifesting in Himself ALL that God is and does, ALL for instance, that is involved in His being ‘the very image of His substance,’ and in His creative acts, His sustaining power, and His making purification of sins, with all that pertains thereto!! W. E. Vine, Vol. 2, p. 19.
“Image”, Hebrew (charakter), is defined as mark stamped upon that instrument, burned or stamped in, an impression; the exact, marked likeness, precise reproduction in every respect. Thayer, p 665 It is the impression produced by a seal or by a diestamp in wax or in metal, an exact replica! William Barclay, Jesus as They Saw Him, p. 319
Substance, defined is the very image of God’s ‘substance’. Here the word has the meaning of the real nature of that to which reference is made in contrast to the outward manifestation; it speaks of the Divine essence of God existent and expressed in the revelation of His son.” Vine, Vol. 4, p. 88 Arndt & Gingrich, p. 854, Thayer, p. 644.
Revelation, then, definitely and directly calls Jesus, GOD, and unhesitatingly takes Old Testament descriptions which belong to God and applies them to Christ. Revelation 1:13-16 describes Jesus exactly as Ezekiel 43:2 and Daniel 10:5-7 Jesus is one of three in 1 John 5:7 (considered spurious by some modern scholars(?)), Hebrews 1:8, Acts 2:34, and Galatians 1:1. “Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised Him from the dead;” Jesus is clearly distinguished from men, or a man, as the source of authority for Paul. If Jesus were just a man, Paul could not make this distinction. Also, Paul writes: “neither by men, but by God the Father”. Jesus is ranked along-side the Father as the source-making them equal!!
Isaiah testifies in the true Messianic tradition, that ‘the child’ to be born was to be divine: Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God (El Gebor), the Everlasting Father (literally ‘the Father of eternity’, Hebrew), the Prince of Peace.” And this child, Matthew informs us, was/is Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Matthew 1:22-23!! Read again Leviticus 24:16: ”And he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord, he shall surely be put to death.

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 6

“I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins; for except ye believe that I Am he, ye shall die in your sins.” John 8:24 In this passage the he has been added by the translators, as indicated by the italics. Actually, Jesus is claiming deity for Himself. He claims to be the I AM, which corresponds to the many passages in both Old and New Testaments that speak of God as I AM. It is a term used of Jehovah. This passage demands our belief in the deity of Jesus and that such belief is necessary to our salvation. IT IS A FACT!! To deny this is now new, the denial of Christ’s deity began with the Gnostics of the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The Apostle Paul refuted them in his letters to the Galatians and Colossians. Their particular idea was, however, that Jesus was only a man, though a superior man. The ideas advocated by the Russellites did not appear until the 3rd and 4th centuries. Origin, in the early 3rd century, advocated the creation of the Word by the Father in time, but still referred to the Word (Christ) as being God. In the early 4th century Arius was the apostle of this damnable doctrine.
Arian was a Bishop of Alexandria in A.D. 319. He said that Jesus was a created being, having a beginning, and hence was not of the same substance as Jehovah, but was used of Jehovah to accomplish His purposes among men. He taught that there was only ONE person in the Godhead, so there was NO Trinity. There was the Father, His inferior Son, and His power the Holy Spirit. Such a position had not been advocated before; it was not held be the disciples in the days of the Apostles, nor by the Christians in the earlier centuries!! Clement of Rome, who was a companion of the Apostles, and all the writers of the first two centuries demanded acceptance of Jesus as being God.
Watchtower literature spends a great deal of time poking fun at the idea of three persons who have the nature called God. They reduce it to a matter of mathematics, such as 1+1+1=1 Such non-sense is based on shear ignorance, willful perversion, and the meaning of the term God, Godhead, and Deity!! God is the name given to a certain NATURE which describes a power, might, ability that is un-definable by words or comprehension, not a certain being!! God is defined as “I who alone create”. No other being can make such a claim!! They cite Deuteronomy 6:4; “The Lord our God is one Lord”, Isaiah 44:6; “I am the first and I am the last; and besides Me there is no God.”, and James 2:19; “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well.” These passages declare a FACT: that fact is the unity of those who possess this nature. The Pentecostals have taken this to mean that there is only one person in the Godhead. They teach the Father was also the Son, and was also the Holy Spirit. The unity of God is found common ground and equality demanded of the three. All divine attributes are equally ascribed to all three persons!! They are all three to be worshipped!! What confuses many is the “role” each played in redeeming mankind. When the Father is pictured as first, the Son second, and the Spirit third, this refers to their position, role, part each played in redeeming mankind. An example is seen in the creation. God the Father had the idea, God the Son brought that plan into reality, and God, the Spirit made creation habitable for mankind, yet all three are creators! In the home we have the same “role playing”. We have the father, who is the head, the mother who is subject to the head, and the children who are subject to both father and mother. A home MUST be united!! No one is going to assert that all are not equal as human beings; certainly the wife is just as much a human being as her husband, and so the children- yet, there has to be an ORDER or the home cannot, will not function as designed!

 

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 5

Joseph Franklin Rutherford took over the organization after the death of Charles Taze Russell in 1916. With marvelous acumen, an insatiable drive for accomplishment, and tremendous vitality Judge Rutherford took the fledgling Bible Study groups of Russell and turned them into a multi-million dollar cult of zealous people who spend most the their time negating the doctrine of Christ openly attacking the sacred truths of Christ Covenant. Their reckless abandonment of truth makes their books sell very well. It is truthful to state that the Witnesses “abhor” or hate their fellow men whose cause they have in a sense served by test cases on civil liberties for they have worn out the courts contesting every restriction placed on them.
From it’s beginning, the Watch Tower has never ceased to pour from its presses direct attacks upon every type religious group, both Protestant and Catholic. The October 1, 1952 issue of the Watch Tower, pages 596 to 604 counsels the Witnesses to display “pure” hatred for the enemies of the Theocracy. This means every religious group. Before the Judge passed on the baton he purchased an estate for Abraham, Isaac, David, and the boys to live in when they came back to the earth to commence the millennial reign!!. This manse, called Beth Sharim, was located outside of San Diego, California. It was a lavish palace The Judge joined Russell January 8, 1942 in Hell and has not since been heard from. The surprise to all of this is the Judge did not expect Hell to be but a few minutes and so far, for him, it has lasted some 70 years or better!!
The next “leader” of the “little flock, faithful and true” was a man whose name was Nathan Knorr. Knorr seems to have sophisticated the Russellites and honed their edge leaving them with a lot of memory work to tell of the Watch Tower. (They have memorized messages when visiting your front doors. He has added a bit of psychological “voodoo” to their damnable lies in that they expect and welcome rebuff and rejection when they are turned a way having been taught it is proof from God they are doing His will. This allows them to take much more criticism than ever before thinking they have “suffered for the name of the Lord”!! Oh yes, they also have to turn in their “time-slip” listing the number of “calls” they make. If they do not make their quota, they are ex-communicated from the congregation.
The history of the Jehovah’s Witnesses- tracing their theological ancestry from the days of Arius of Alexandria through Nathan H. Knorr, reveals a checkered eclectic pattern of theological perversion, amply seasoned with sincerity and delivered to an innocent public by a zealous group of badly misled persons. These people have been “controlled” beyond reason by the Watch Tower into a “zombie-like” state, and they proffer Russellite mythology to a lost world that in reality needs the Gospel of Christ, not Russellism in any form!!
One of the best at their gift, the “Society” possesses a remarkable gift of changing the appearance of coming from the teachings of Charles Taze Russell. This chameleon-like strategy makes it not embarrassing for them when people know the history of Russell. In the early days before Pastor Rutherford named Charles Taze’s bastard religion they called themselves “Bible Students”. When the group grew so fast Russell found it necessary to incorporate under an official name. This Russell did, in 1879, when he founded “Zion’s Watch Tower Magazine”, today known as “The Watch Tower Announcing Jehovah’s Kingdom” This was later changed to “the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society”. He moved them to New York and organized the “International Bible Students”.

 

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 4

Part 4
When you trace the origin of a movement to the man or woman who started that movement, you are always disappointed, for they are human and humans sin. The opposite is true with the Church started by the Savior of the of all who will obey, one is never disappointed with Him for He lived and died without fault or sin and no man can find any mistake in His life!! Both Pastor Russell and Judge Rutherford were men of glaring mistakes in their personal lives that finally showed in their work as the heads of the Watch Tower Tract and Bible Society and the Jehovah’s Witness organization. The record is clear and plain that Pastor Russell sold what was called ‘miracle wheat’ in the early 1900’s, was caught in embarrassing circumstances with secretaries, and divorced by his wife for immorality while Judge Rutherford spent quality time in prison in the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary because of his lack of loyalty for the United States of America during war-time (and there were many other things).
The prophet Isaiah reminds us, quoting the voice of the Lord “before Me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after Me…I, even I am the Lord; and beside Me there is no Savior…I Am the first, and I Am the last; and besides Me there is no God.” Isaiah 43:10-11; 44:6, also Isaiah 42:8. The God who is speaking in Isaiah is the God who makes the same assertions in Revelations 1:17-18, John 8:58, and John 8:24. In John 8:58 the tense of I Am is the present tense. The present tense is timeless, continuous action, it cannot begin, start, or come into being; it has always been!! Abraham had a beginning, Christ had NONE!! If this be true (and God cannot lie), the Russellites find themselves in a very embarrassing situation: they worship an Almighty God they singularly call Jehovah and a mighty god, called Jesus Christ created as the first act of creation, who, according to their doctrine, cannot be deity!! This would make them polytheists and man-worshippers!!
One thing that has always interested me about the Russellites is their name, Jehovah’s Witnesses. Everywhere I meet one of these poor deluded souls (they do not think they have one of these), they tell me they are Jehovah’s Witnesses, yet, their founder never named them such!! Pastor Russell, admittedly their founder, died before this name was branded on these un-believers by Judge Russell at a convention held in 1931!! I thought the father always named his child!! How could Judge Russell have the authority to do such an injustice to Pastor Russell’s child?? How could a man whose writings, “if not read in ten years with the Bible only being read,” make such a mistake so as not to name correctly his organization?? It looks to me like if Rutherford could prophecy of the second coming of Christ, make miracle wheat, and take the fire out of Hell; he could have named his “servants faithful and true” before he died!! Would you not think that rather important?? Russell was a prolific writer, and had six volumes entitled “Studies in the Scriptures” to mention this important name, yet never seemed to get around to naming his organization of damnable lies and deceit, maybe he had to leave something for his successor, Pastor Russell!! I could accept that, but, why did it take the lying Pastor 13 years to come up with the name??
On October 31, 1916 aboard a transcontinental train, near Pampa, Texas, the first president of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society, “Pastor” Charles Taze Russell did the world a favor, he appeared before the registry of death and went to the place he declared did not exist and in which there was fire, Hell, and has been burning ever since. His last wishes were to be wrapped in a sheet resembling a Roman toga!

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 3

Briefly, the Arian heresy can be summed up in this short proposition: one, God the Father gave birth to the Son, Jesus Christ who was born, has an origin of existence; two, once the Son was not; He had a beginning, was created by a superior being; three, Christ was created out of nothing, before then, nothing existed but the Father whose name was Jehovah.
Arius arrived at this seemingly reasonable theory because, not knowing the scripture, he sought to supply an answer for a question the ‘Bible never completely answered; namely, how Christ is both God and man, never ceasing, never beginning, and never ending and yet true to the Nature of each.’
In his first letter to the Corinthian church, Paul reveals glimpses of the mysterious relationship existing between the eternal God and His identical Son. In the first chapter of this letter Paul also declares that Christ is “the power and the wisdom of God,” while John wrote that Jesus Christ was “the true God and eternal life”. 1 John 5:20 Arianism was mute before this revelation of truth, since IF the Word/ Reason/ Wisdom of God did not always exist then the Father also has lacked true completeness; for were the Word not eternal then the Father has not possessed eternal wisdom, reason and power! Christ is the FULNESS of both the Father and the Son in Him!! Colossians 2:9, Hebrews 1:3, Titus 1:3, John 1:1 Arius also neglected to address the verses of Scripture which reveal the Lord Jesus equality with the Father (see John 8:58, Exodus 3:14). In the face of all this evidence Arius preferred to remain silent!! “All that the Father has is Mine”, John 16:15, and “I and the Father are one”, John 10:30 (which we mentioned last week), Arian ignored. What MUST be answered is, IF Christ possesses all that the Father has, does He not possess His titles and share His intrinsic deity?? Again, Arianist/Jehovah Witnesses are silent!!
Time and time again the Arianist have raged about Isaiah’s words of Isaiah 9:6-“For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulders; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” The Russellites dare not deny the prophecy spoken of Christ, yet, it ascribes to Him deity, Athanasius, and later Chalcedon and Chrysostom, the greatest enemies of Arianism, led the battle against the impious Arius: at the Council of Nicaea which convened in Bithynia in the summer of 325 AD, Athanasius had the satisfaction of seeing the Arian theology officially condemned as heresy and its leaders excommunicated. Some 300 bishops banded together against the Arian minority of 30 (which dwindled to 18), as the Nicaean Council set its stamp of approval (although that was not needed, who were they?) on what the Scriptures had always taught, Jesus is “the true God and eternal life”. 1 John 5:20
The Arianist and now their disgusting children, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, allow Christ all the attributes and titles of God that relate to God, but the equality of the Father’s Substance or Nature. Question: if Christ be not the same Nature as the Father and the Holy Spirit, then He must be inferior to them and the unity of the Godhead becomes a hollow linguistic sham!! Paul, writing under the direction of the Holy Spirit declared that at the resurrection of Christ “every knee should bow and every tongue would confess that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9-10
Today, the Russellites, Jehovah’s witnesses still run around lying about the deity of our Lord. THIS IS the heart of the Watchtower Tract and Bible Society!!

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites) Part 2

One of the most profound and mysterious of the revelation is unquestionably the three who possess the nature called God! Three beings that exist as one in purpose, plan, and objective cause many to be thrown into confusion. When Jesus claimed, “I and the Father are one”, John 10:30, many are counting one, two, three, and on. The word in the Greek language is hen. The word for one as in counting is heis which means numerically, one. Hen means one in essence although there exist two or three personalities. The power of the Son is here (and many other places) declared equal to that of the Father, and while this is the contextual point of reference, much more is implied. Jesus asserted the essential unity of the Father and the Son in the word “one (hen). Hen is neuter in gender and indicates equality of essence, attributes, design, will, and work!! Jesus distinguishes the “I” from the “Father” and uses the plural verb “are” denoting “we are.” The words separate the persons within the Godhead while asserting their unity of essence or nature as identical. (The Jews, in verse 24, had asked Jesus to tell them plainly who He was. They had surrounded Him as if to frighten or intimidate Him, repeatedly poking questions at Him. They wanted Him to say, “I am your Messiah” that they might have stronger language on which to charge Him with blasphemy. They could then openly charge Him before Pilate as guilty of treason and rebellion against the Roman government.) The Jews understood His claim as God even if the Russellites cannot; “they took up stones to stone Him.” Stoning was the Jewish method of executing criminals. Leviticus 24:16 The Jews had stones in their hands, poised to fling them as Jesus spoke these words. THINK OF IT!! Stoning God!! To prove their understanding they retorted; “because that Thou, being a man, makest Thyself God.” They charged Him with blasphemy because Jesus had claimed all the essence and prerogatives of deity!! (Ro anyone to assign any other meaning to this is sheer irresponsible lying, purposefulness, intentional blindness, even the Jews recognized He had claimed, stated, intended them to understand He is God!! Read John 5:18 and John 8:25, 29.
Prominent among the theologians who had taken Grecian theology and melded it into Christianity was a learned brother named Lucian of Antioch. Lucian was an elder in the Syrian Church of Christ. This Greek-thinking mystic trained a whole group of potential enemies of Christianity and schooled them in the cleverness of dialectical theology. Dialectical theology is the practice of examining ideas logically for their validity; demanding they had to meet their criteria of logic. Devoted to the concept that “once the Son of God had not been”, Lucian stoutly challenged the eternal Deity of Christ (does this found familiar, studied with a Russellite?) It is unfortunate that, like Joseph Smith, Lucian was sent to Hell early, he was martyred for his radical views by over-zealous disciples of the Truth. As you might expect, his death spawned the “want-to-be” disciples of Lucian and gave them a rejoicing refrain: “if he was wrong, they would not repent; he was right, they could not answer his arguments, so they killed him”!!
Lucian’s death shows the wisdom of our Master who had proclaimed to Peter; “put up thy sword. They that live by the sword shall die by the sword.” Lucian’s death was, in a sense, a victory for error, it cursed his murderers. One of his prized pupils lived to spread his teachings over the entire Christian world and caused a split in the Lord’s Church in a way that was not equaled until the use of modern-day “interpretations”, called translations!! The pupil of dubious fame was, in fact, Arius of Alexandria, a learned respected scholar. The sect bore his name: Aryanism. Today, Jehovah’s Witnesses.

 

Error of Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Russellites)

Time has come that we study a group of itinerant-door-to-door evangelist that have plagued the streets of the United States and other countries for about 150 years. Theirs is the youngest of the major denominational cults of our day having begun in the 1840’s. Their leader and founder was not even a nice guy (to those who knew him, we are told), but saw in the work of Alexander Campbell a way to “make more money than God”! His ideas were not new, in fact they came from the second century after the Lord started His Church, the Church of Christ. The doctrine he espoused in the plethora of writings he saddled the world with had been dormant for a long time and the reformation world did not see in it what the Church of Christ had fought and defeated in the third century.
Throughout the early history of the Church of Christ, but especially in the first four centuries, the growing body of Christian believers later to become the ‘visible church’ encountered both political and doctrinal opposition as they fought their way through the mazes of both Roman oppression and Greek mystical theology. None of these battles were more important to the future of the cause of Christ than was the “Arians of the fourth century”. These brethren, yes, believe it or not they were brethren, arrayed themselves against the original doctrine of Christ of the first century demanding an explanation to those things which could only be known by revelation. Politically and doctrinally, the Arian heresy challenged the cornerstone of all those teachings of the apostles two centuries before them. Denying the revelation of the apostles as “given from Heaven” the Arians denied with boldness the true Deity of Jesus Christ. Like their contemporaries of the Russellite movement they did not believe in the eternal Word, they came to believe He, Jesus Christ, was the first work of the creation of God.
The origin of the controversy between those who believed the writings of the apostles, who taught and believed Jesus Christ to be truly God who came and made His abode in a human body, and those called “Arians” who affirmed that He was merely the first and greatest of God’s creatures created in time and elevated to the rank of “a god”, began in the year 319 AD with Arius of Alexandria, a learned teacher and Elder of the Alexandrian Church of Christ in Egypt. The Church had deteriorated in doctrine and conviction because of its great size and importance. Nothing was like Her. Her size and wealth was only equaled by her political, financial, and social place in those societies.
Early in the second century history records major departures from the “faith, once delivered to the saints” on many subjects. Not willing to leave the doctrine of Christ pure, men had already practiced sprinkling of water on the sick and called that baptism, allowed un-married men to become elders in the local congregations, and begun a movement that eventually eradicated the evangelist from the make-up of the organizational structure of the Church. The “rationalists” began showing up in certain schools of instruction from Greece, teaching what their dead faiths had taught before Christ came. They began to infiltrate themselves into many doctrinal “councils” held in those days where new doctrines were voted on and approved by men with superior revelation!! These brethren had “mysteries and revelations which were never intended to be fully understood outside of the mind of God”!! John Chrysostom championed the cause of our Master and because of his respect for the Word and eloquence, silenced them. In his “homilies” (Latin for sermons) on “The Incomprehensible Nature of God”, John argued repeatedly that what was not revealed was never intended to be considered because it was beyond our ability to comprehend!! Isaiah 55:7-8