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Part II (Continued)
THE "MAN OF LAWLESSNESS" IN OUR MIDST???
The following information is an excerpt taken from the publication called: The "Report" Volume I pages 168-182, published and released in 1994.
[See blog with graphics at: http://livingwatersforum.com/sends/senderror.htm]
THE "OPERATION OF ERROR" -- WHAT IS IT???
However, if the above information is not enough to convince an individual, let's consider another fact. In verses 11 and 12 of 2 Thessalonians 2nd chapter from the New World Translation, we read:
"So that is why God lets [NWT "lets ... it go"] an operation of error go to them, that they may get to believing the lie, in order that they all may be judged because they did not believe the truth but took pleasure in unrighteousness." -- 2 Thessalonians 2:11, 12 New World Translation
There can be no question, but that these particular verses have, over the years, proven to be quite problematic for the Watchtower Society, to say the least. Therefore, you will find upon examination, there is very little written about them as a form of explanation as to how this all happens, actually. So then, let's examine this situation for ourselves.
First, you may have noticed that we put in brackets the word "lets." That is because this word "lets" is a special rendering by the Watchtower Society. How do we know? Well, if you check the Watchtower Society's own New World Kingdom Interlinear Translation for yourselves, as Paul recommends all "christians" do (Acts 17:11), you will find the English transliteration of the actual Greek word here (Greek: Pem'po) is to be translated literally as ... "is sending." Now mind you, this is according to the Watchtower Society's own publication, in this case.
Further, more investigation reveals apparently all other modern translations of the Greek also renders this verse consistently the same, namely: God "sends" this "operation of delusion" or "error." We have not as of yet, found any modern translation of the Bible that renders the verse as if God `lets it go to them.' However, let's notice an even more shocking, direct statement by the Watchtower Society on this very verse. They say pointedly:
"GOD DOES NOT DIRECTLY SEND this `operation of error,' but lets it go to the deceived ones in order to prove that it is what they really want. (Compare Hebrews 4:12) In this way all honest-hearted persons can see that God is just in his judgment." (See 1975 Watchtower pg. 271 par. 4)
Did you notice their comment that "God does not directly send this operation of error" ... did you notice this???
No, but the Watchtower Society explains Almighty God ... "lets it go" to the wrongdoers. But how can they (Governing Body/Watchtower Society) teach this to seven (7) million Jehovah's Witnesses, right within the publications, not to mention millions of interested persons who avidly read the literature around the world ... how can they do this???
Now at this point, ask yourself: Isn't that statement made above by the Watchtower Society, in itself, a direct contradiction to the actual inspired text? Yes, isn't this a direct contradiction of what the Scriptures actually say???
And to further demonstrate their gross disrespect for God's Word, ohhhhhhhh yes, they have adjusted `their' own particular translation of the bible, namely the New World Translation, to reflect this twisted thinking by saying ... God "lets ... it go," instead of what should properly be there, namely the expression God actually "sends" the "operation of error," or "strong delusions," just as many, many modern translations clearly say. In fact to date, we cannot find a single modern translation, that renders this particular Greek word (Pem'po) this way. Shocking indeed!!!
Nevertheless to get the proper understanding of the matter and really see why ... why this was done by Watchtower teachers, let's insert the proper word and reread the verses in question. [Please reread.] Now, what did you find? Why, you found that Jehovah himself "sends" the operation of error as an immediate recompense because they "did not accept the love of the Truth." (verse 10) No, Jehovah did not "let...it go" to them, as would be the case of the way the WTBTS teaches the Emperor Constantine's fusion of religion and state occurred in the 4th century — yes, across hundreds and hundreds of years, centuries of time. No, but Jehovah actually "SENDS" the "operation of error" or "strong delusions," just as the verse says, to ALL THOSE WHO DO NOT LOVE TRUTH," isn't that so?
(For an indepth discussion of Godly Truth as a holy possession for His People, please see the article: You Will Know The Truth ... And The Truth Will Set You Free".)
Actually, changing the wording from literally "sends" [Greek: Pem'po] to "lets go" really changes the focus from a specific time period to an indefinite one. Yes, if one uses the word or expression "sends" here, in this verse specifically, then we are forced to address the question when, yes when did Jehovah actually "send" the operation of error? Yes when, specifically???
And of course, if you ever have opportunity to ask the Watchtower Society or its leading Bethel Elders that particular question posed above, you will find when you pose the question, they (elders) are at a TOTAL LOSS as to what to say to you. No, you will quickly find, they really can't give you a definite answer of any kind, to such a poignant question. In fact, you may find they are curiously baffled, perhaps visibly shaken even, isn't that true???
Think about it!
(For an indepth discussion of the Greek word "Pem'po" taken from the New World Kingdom Interlinear Translation, please see the article entitled: Watchtower Society Contradicts The Bible -- When & Why???)
WHAT IF JEHOVAH ACTUALLY "SENDS" THE "OPERATION OF ERROR"???
Now, if Jehovah "sends" (or "let's go") the "operation of error" to Christendom as the Society teaches, then He must have `let it go' it during the 4th century when the "man of lawlessness" revealed himself. Right??? Therefore, teachings such as Trinity, Hellfire, Immortality of Soul, etc. would constitute this particular "operation of error," wouldn't you think?
If that were the case, then we would also expect the latter portion of the scriptures to be true also, namely:
"...that they may get to believing the lie in order that they ALL may be judged..."
Yes, they (Christendom) will get to `believing the lie' and `get judged' — all of them! Now, if the "operation of error" has been "sent" to Christendom some 17 centuries previous, the members of Christendom are beyond hope. Yes, the Society's explanation of matters would mean that "all" of Christendom's parishioners, the fake `temple' has been "judged." They are beyond hope because Jehovah has already `sent' an "operation of error" to them. They cannot be helped because they are hopeless — they have been "judged" by the Almighty himself!
But ask yourself, why are you personally going out in field service? And to whom are you preaching to? Isn't it to those who are in the churches of Christendom? And from where did the 7 million membership of the Jehovah's Witnesses come from? Is it not true that Jehovah's Witnesses themselves are actually made up almost exclusively of ex-Christendom membership. Surely, the "operation of error" had not affected these individuals from the churches of Christendom. Yes, even down to this day, Jehovah's Witnesses are still witnessing to Christendom, the `fake temple,' the ones the Society claim have received the "operation of error," the ones that have "all" been "judged." And yet, amazingly, some of these same `judged' people have become Jehovah's Witnesses. Yes, if they have all been "judged," then how do you explain this situation? Actually, the way the Watchtower Society teaches this particular doctrine is really a paradox of sorts. Let's notice the following.
PONDER THIS: When we think about it, we cannot separate the time when God "sends the operation of error" and when the people "all get judged," can we? The scripture specifically says this happens at the same time. Right??? Yes, the perpetual belief in the "lie," is the consequence of receiving the "operation of error," thus showing that the individuals in question have "all" been "judged." Right??? Now, if someone should say that the "operation of error" is destined to go to Christendom, in the near future, by the hand of God — then we are left to understand that such teachings as the Trinity, Immortality of the Soul, Hellfire, etc does not constitute an "operation of error" from God. Yes, the "operation of error" that was supposed to go them during the 4th century when the "man of lawlessness" "revealed" himself, has been delayed.
And if we say that the "operation of error" was indeed "sent" or `let go,' if you prefer, in the 4th century, then the churches of Christendom and it's clergy must have `all been judged' then. Yes, judged in the 4th century. In that case, there could be no room for repentance. They are past that point because Jehovah has judged them; no, He has `let go' or `sent' the "operation of error." If this is the case, then, we are forced to,
ASK YOURSELF: How have Jehovah's Witnesses been successful in turning millions upon millions previously "judged" people ... that's people that have been "Judged" by Jehovah God Himself, away from the trinity doctrine, hellfire doctrine, the earth burning up doctrine and countless other ridiculous false teachings of the churches of Christendom? Yes ask yourself, how have Jehovah's Witnesses been successful in doing this???
There can be no question, ohhhhhhh yes, this small passage of scripture concerning the "man of lawlessness," does not apply to Christendom at all, does it? No, not at all!
At least, not when we really, really think about it.
"...THEY GET TO BELIEVING THE LIE"
HERE IS ANOTHER POINT TO CONSIDER: Isn't it true, the Watchtower Society never says exactly what this "lie" really is. Yes, what is this "lie" that Christendom gets to believing as punishment or recompense for NOT believing the truth, in the first place? Yes, how has "ALL" (and that's "ALL" as the verse says) of Christendom received of this particular punishment or `judgment?'
Christendom has, since its inception, been lying. They willingly embrace lies of all kinds, such as hellfire, trinity, immortality of the soul, and the list goes on and on. Does this mean that "ALL" of Christendom have proven themselves to be unrecoverable from such teachings? Obviously not! Many, many Jehovah's Witnesses once believed such false doctrines as "hellfire," trinity and "immortality of the soul" before one of Jehovah's Witnesses called at their door. Surely these ones had not suffered the "operation of error" where one gets to "believing the lie," permanently! Remember the scripture says that they "ALL get judged." And "all" means ALL inclusively, with no one inadvertently, being left out.
Think about it.
Well, what does this scripture mean? This verse makes sense only when we think of it as having application to those who really did have Jehovah's blessing; someone who really had "truth," yet nevertheless, turned `their ears away from the truth.' (2 Timothy 4:3, 4) These ones preferred the "lie" over the Truth. They willing took pleasure in what was unrighteous. These individuals Jehovah would be obligated to punish. He would "send" the "operation of error" because they did not "stand fast in the truth," in imitation of Satan. (John 8:44) No, they did not "rejoice in truth." (1 Corinthian 13:6) This description could fit only one people and they are Jehovah's Witnesses, as an organization! They are the only organization that can truly "receive" an "operation of error."
Yes, Jehovah's Witnesses, the ones who take pleasure in such false teachings as the fall of Jerusalem in 607 BCE, and the false dogma of the date of 1914, and the so-called "invisible Presence" of Christ since that year. Yes, they delight in such teachings. However, let us not misunderstand. This attitude towards falsehood simply precipitates the final action of Jehovah to "send" the operation of error. No that "operation of error" has not been "sent" yet. Therefore, we can expect, that at some specific point, after the Jehovah's Witnesses have gone off into "apostasy" in following the "King of the North," Jehovah will indeed "send" the "operation of error." And what will they believe then???
They will believe the "lie." "What lie," you say? Surely not 1914 and the invisible parousia, since they believe that already! No, the "lie" they will begin to believe will be the same lies that they have condemned the churches for teaching for so many years, namely: the Trinity, Hellfire, image veneration, and icon worship. They will further become involved in politics in a most obvious way, and give open support to the governments during the time of "test."
Paul foresaw our times by saying:
"However, the inspired utterance says definitely that in later periods of time some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to misleading inspired utterances and teachings of demons, by the hypocrisy of men who speak lies, marked in their conscience as with a branding iron; forbidding to marry, commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be partaken of with thanksgiving by those who have faith and accurately know the truth." — 1 Timothy 4:1-3
Yes, Paul said that in "later periods of time," as in the "last days" of this system of things, the "time of the end" — some will "fall away from the faith." Now, to whom only can this apply? Yes, it has to apply to Jehovah's Witnesses, since they are the only ones who can truly be said to "be in the faith." Right??? And since this is to happen in "later periods of time" — it is meant for our day and time, yes, the "time of the end," not the 4th century as the Society claims. But let's look at another scripture on this same subject:
"For there will be a period of time when they will not put up with the healthful teachings, but, in accord with their own desires, they will accumulate teachers for themselves to have their ears tickled; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, whereas they will be turned aside to false stories [myths]." — 2 Timothy 4:3, 4
Yes, again these individuals have "turned their ears away from the truth." Yes, these individuals must have had access to the truth, and subsequently `turned away from it.' Again, it is more reasonable to believe that this would apply to those within the Christian congregation in the last days. No, they did not "accept the love of the Truth;" no, they did not "believe the truth" when it was presented to them by the "Two Witnesses." Think about it. — 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12
Jesus put it this way:
"Therefore take away the talent from him and give it to him that has the ten talents. For to everyone that has, more will be given and he will have abundance; but as for him that does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. And throw the good-for-nothing slave out into the darkness outside. There is where [his] weeping and gnashing of teeth will be." — Matthew 25:28-30
Yes, outside into "darkness," where he will believe all sorts of "myths" or "false stories." Think about it.
No, the "man of Lawlessness" is not, therefore, the wicked clergy of Christendom. And neither is the "temple," the one presided over by the "man of Lawlessness," Christendom. No, but the "temple," itself could only be the congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses who are presently unwittingly giving worship to the "man of lawlessness," the Watchtower Society with it's Governing Body, the rival "god" within Jehovah's own temple! We really, really need to think about this. — Exodus 20:3; 34:14
ARE WE REALLY WORSHIPPING THE ORGANIZATION?
But someone will still raise the question: "Even though the Society has done all these aforementioned things — things that I didn't even know about, can it really be said that we are guilty of `worshipping' the Watchtower Society as a "god?" Are we `sharing' our worship of Jehovah with the Watchtower Society? (Isaiah 42:8) Well, when it comes to "worshipping" an organization as a "god," let's allow the Watchtower magazine itself to clear the matter up for us. Fair enough??? Notice this revealing statement on this very subject from that magazine. It reads:
"Where there is a throne there must of necessity be a kingdom with its subjects ruled over by the occupant of the throne. And, though it may not always be so, there is no doubt in this instance that worship is involved, which means the rendering of reverential homage and respect and adoration. Do not think of this as limited to one who attends a place of worship or goes through some form of religious service or exercise. If one renders obedient service to someone or some ORGANIZATION, whether willingly or under compulsion, looking up to such as possessing a position of superior rulership and great authority, then that one can scripturally be said to be a WORSHIPER." (See Watchtower 9/1/61 pg. 525, 15.)
In addition, notice the question for this particular paragraph of the study article [15B]: "How can worship be scripturally defined?" We of the Intimate Group could not have said it any clearer. Yes, `WORSHIP' in the strictest scriptural sense, is THE WORD that we want to use in addressing this most difficult and alarming situation facing God's people today!
THE "CHANNEL OF COMMUNICATION" OR ILLEGAL "SLAVE" — WHICH?
The Watchtower Society and its Governing Body claim to be the "channel of communication" between Jehovah God and his people. They claim to be the mouthpiece of the "Faithful Slave" class of anointed upon the earth. (Matthew 24:45) However, THE "REPORT," message itself, written by God's servants, "the prophets", proves that their claims are completely false! (Ezekiel 21:6, 7; Acts 3:24; Romans 16:25, 26; Revelation 10:7) Simply put, these men who presently hold positions as Governing Body Members, have accomplished virtually nothing in a spiritual way in edifying or educating the household of God in their over 30-year (since December 1975) tenure in office.
And their predecessors, namely Charles T. Russell, J.F. Rutherford and Nathan Knorr have either revived or maintained the basic, elementary thread of Truth, the framework or ABC's of Bible Truth that have been known for centuries. These would include exposing the error of the Trinity and hellfire doctrines, as well as being iconoclastic or against images such as the "Cross." The Albigensians of the 12th Century, as well as several other Bible study groups of years gone by, did in fact, teach similar doctrines as Historian Will Durant points out in his research publication The Story of Civilization volume 4. — Please see chapter 1 of The "Report" Volume I under article entitled: "God's Name People and the Framework of Truth."
Quite a few of these basic, elementary teachings have been known by small Christian groups for centuries! Therefore, what is it that the Watchtower Society teaches that is so outstanding? What can we point to as being real proof of their claim that they are the "Faithful and Discreet Slave" or it's mouthpiece? (Matthew 24:45) The 1914 dogma??? After reading chapter 2 of The "Report" Volume I we could not say that, could we? Really, if we are honest with ourselves, we would have to admit this important point: the Watchtower Society has not come into possession of the promised "sealed" information as we would expect of the "Faithful and Discreet Slave" during the "time of the end." Isn't that true??? — Daniel 12:4,9
2 Peter 3:17 states:
"You, therefore, beloved ones, having this advance knowledge, be on your guard that you may not be led away with them by the error of the law-defying people [or "illegal ones" footnote large print New World Translation Reference Bible] and fall from your own steadfastness."
Yes, the Watchtower Society and it's leaders have "illegally" directed the people's attention to themselves as the "Faithful Slave" and it's mouthpiece. And what's worse, they have presumptuously assumed an even higher role in more recent years. How have they done this? By causing the people to look to themselves and their organization as the real source of salvation and not to Jehovah God and Jesus Christ. And no one dares question their authority! We, as Jehovah's Witnesses, all know this to be true. (2 Peter 3:17 footnote Ref. NW Trans.) Yes, they have taken a position that rivals even Jehovah God in his own temple, just as the scriptures said would be done before the Lord's parousia. (2 Thessalonians 2:2-8)
We, today, need to keep in mind that regardless of what position of authority an individual may have in his service to Jehovah, real or imagined, still it in no way warrants or justifies assuming a position that rivals God Almighty! In no way should they (Watchtower Society or anybody else) solicit adulation or worship from the individuals served. Jesus Christ set a perfect example in this respect. (John 5:19, 30; 8:29) No one is exempt from punishment for disobedient acts that exalt the creature to suggested parity or equal status with Jehovah God. Yes, the example of Moses, a prophet whom Jehovah communicated with "mouth-to-mouth," and the water-in-the-rock incident clearly proves this point. — Numbers 12:8; 20:10
Then too, let's give attention to the example of the apostle John when he received the Revelation from the angel of God. On two separate occasions, John unwittingly attempted to bow down and "worship" the channel of communication — the angel! And notice too the seriousness of the angel when he warned him not to do such a thing, thus averting near disaster, twice. (Revelation 19:10; 22:8, 9) Note too John's own humble acknowledgement of this wrong act, since he described his mistake as an attempt to "worship!" Similarly, can we as Jehovah's Witnesses also, in all humility, admit that we, too, could possibly be guilty of the same thing??? It is something to think about, isn't it?
Yes, after an examination of the facts, we would have to say that God's people today, HAVE been undutiful in "worshipping" the presumed modern day channel of communication, the Watchtower Society, particularly with its Governing Body.
A VITAL POINT TO REMEMBER: Paul himself under inspiration provided an excellent rule of conduct that should be followed at all times. At Galatians 1:8-10 he said:
"However, if we or an angel out of heaven were to declare to you as good news something beyond what we declared to you as good news, Let him be ACCURSED."
Yes, Paul said that even if "we" (apostles with himself included) or an "angel out of heaven" declared "something beyond" what was earlier declared as good news, information that had been established as Bible-based and truly rooted in the Sacred Scriptures, let him be "accursed!" Yes, "let him be accursed" because he has deviated, he has "FALLEN AWAY!" (Hebrews 6:4-8) Clearly, Galatians 1:8-10 covers all of God's creation, whether in heaven or on earth. Nobody is exempt. However, we have noticed that the Watchtower Society has gone against their own counsel stated in previous articles of their own magazines. They have gone against what they themselves have `declared' to us as `good news' on the matter of dedication. They have completely contradicted themselves on their dedication questions, haven't they?
And so, again, we ask the question: To whom are you most Loyal? To Jehovah, or to some man or some man-made organization?
(To get more information on the above topic, please see the article: Are Your Most Loyal To God Or An Organization -- Which???)
Remember, only you ... you personally can truly answer such a question. Yes, you prove that you are truly "loyal" to Jehovah only when you are completely obedient to His commands.
Think about it!
Donald C. Burney
End of Part 2.
"....save both yourself and those who listen to you." -- 1 Timothy 4:16