EMAILS FROM VISITORS
FROM AN ELDER - JANUARY 26, 2013
EMAIL FROM AN ANOINTED ELDER
ASKING FOR HELP, RECEIVED ON JANUARY 26, 2013
On January 26, 2013, we received a letter from an anointed elder of a congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the United States, asking for help in connection with his hope. We provided a response and asked him for permission to publish the contents of his email and our response for the benefit of our association of brothers worldwide. He gave his permission. The contents of the email is below.
We write this note to thank you once more for publishing such uplifting information for all the true anointed ones of the Living God. We are sure that your website has had the most up building effect not only in us but in all those that through faith and conviction have come to know who they are. Please continue with your work of encouragement and of illuminating the hearts of God’s children with the true good news.
The purpose of this note is to inform you that we have been using many of the thoughts, scriptures and ideas from your website to explain the good news to others in our congregation. Some have accepted the one hope immediately and recognized the simplicity and clarity of the heavenly hope. Others, as expected, are going through a period of confusion and grief, as you have explained elsewhere that would happen. Yet other have felt threatened and run to talk to listening ears in the body of elders. Of course, this state of confusion comes from the lack of consistency in the teachings and articles published with the authorization of the Governing Body. Adding to that, as is evident, most articles in the Watchtower magazine are not written by anointed Christians. We have been aware of these difficulties for years, and have been willing to continue our association with the Society. Nevertheless, the one thing we find perplexing beyond our comprehension is the one thing that we cannot let go: how is it possible that for more than 70 years the anointed ones of the Governing Body have been teaching another hope, the mythical earthly hope to all these millions of people. It is frankly heartbreaking!
Anybody can see that irreparable harm can be caused to spiritual children by steering them to a hope that is empty. Instead of aiding these sheep-like ones to attain a proper standing with the Father, as sons and daughters, and helping them develop their perceptive powers to protect themselves from the all-out war of Satan against the anointed ones, these publishers are still struggling with elementary teaching many years after getting baptized, always feeling spiritually shaky. A regular pioneer sister a few days ago confessed: “It feels like the work that I do is not approved by Jehovah.” She has been baptized 30 years already. A 20-year-old regular pioneer said: “Deep inside, I feel guilty many times. What I do is never enough?” The wife of an elder [baptized for 35 years] told me with teary eyes: “I feel that something is missing. I don’t know what it is.”
After serving as a Bethel elder and after my service at Bethel for many years as an elder in several congregations, it is not hard to see that the emptiness and feelings of staleness that many long time publishers experience are not an indicator of a lack of love for the Father, but that such love has not been realized and completed. The love they have for God has not found its proper expression in the most intimate loving relationship, that of the son to Father and a Father to son. Why? We think, because they have been forbidden by the organization to fulfill this love. They have been told through talks, dramas, and the literature they read, to hypnotic levels I dare to say, that God does not want them as his children, but only as friends and associates under his service. We hear, in the meetings, prayers to God addressing him as Father, but all the inaccurate teachings in their minds betray their true feelings: a sense of separateness and distance from our loving Father. They do feel like orphans!
The only thing we have found that brightens their future is this new found expectation of becoming what they knew in their hearts already, children of God without reservations. Brothers and sisters that were about to give up spiritually have come back with renewed joy for life and a wholesome love for the brotherhood. Should we give up sharing the good news? Never!
On the other hand, today we had the visit of a couple of elders from my own congregation, coming to ask us not to speak anymore to the publishers in private about this heavenly hope. They mentioned that they will consider the matter with the Circuit Overseer upon his visit. We knew that this was coming. My wife and I wonder if we are ready for the anxieties that await us! We do know that, like the Christ, the Father gave us not a spirit of fear but of courage and boldness. So we know that we are in the Father’s care and that eternal life has already started for all of us, we have His approval. We love the friends so much and they need all the help they can get, but at this point, we do not know how long we will be part of the congregation. If you have any words of encouragement for us, we will appreciate them from the heart.
May the love of the Father and the Son be with you always.
Dear Brother [name omitted],
We want to thank you for sharing with us your sincere love for the Father, your loyalty to the Christ, and your courageous and bold service to your brothers and sisters. The Father’s spirit is roving about looking for men and women such as you and your wife, spiritual farmers and skillful planters of seed, to lead this mis-directed people into the Kingdom of the Son of His Love, to make them God-aware and God-knowing. (Colossians 1:13) We are honored to be in association with you.
Let us first share with you that you are not alone. There are many, many elders who are carrying out this same faithful work, bearing this yoke and undergoing this same baptism, in spite of the opposition of uninformed physical-minded men who have not yet subjected themselves to the Christ. Dear brother, you are eating and drinking the blood of the Christ. (John 6:53-57) This is what you are here to do. This is your hour. Consider it all joy. (James 1:2-4) You want a ministry? This is it!
Take heed to Jesus’ counsel to his apostles as he sent them forth among their own people and religious leaders:
“Look! I am sending you forth as sheep amidst wolves; therefore prove yourselves cautious as serpents and yet innocent as doves. Be on your guard against men; for they will deliver you up to local courts, and they will scourge you in their synagogues. Why, you will be haled before governors and kings for my sake, for a witness to them and the nations”
– Matthew 10:16-18
This is counsel to remain true to your faith. You are to always be mindful of the tactics of those who challenge you (cautious as serpents), yet you must always respond with loving concern (innocent as doves). The brothers who seek to silence you are acting out of loyalty, but not loyalty to the Christ, loyalty to man. Therefore, you must understand their position and in this way, you may be able to save them from their own error. Jesus went on to say:
“However, when they deliver you up, do not become anxious about how or what you are to speak; for what you are to speak will be given you in that hour; for the ones speaking are not just you, but it is the spirit of your Father that speaks by you.”
– Matthew 10:19-20
These words have never been more true than in this time. The spirit of the Father is eager to speak for you. Jesus calls it the helper, the comforter, for moments just like these. (John 14:16) Also know that He has at His disposal all the faithful celestial beings to encourage, nurture and to protect you. (Matthew 26:53) Have no fear!
Others who have been in your position have gained their brothers by their wise use of the Bible and skillful speech. Elders and Ministerial Servants who were once fearful of the heavenly hope are now its outspoken advocates. Whole bodies of Elders have stepped up as sons of the Kingdom. Even Circuit Servants who were called in to counsel such brothers have themselves entered the race for the real life. (1 Timothy 6:19) These matter will become known in time. So there is a possibility that your Circuit Overseer will be favorably disposed.
One thing we have found to be most effective when dealing with slaves of the organization is to utilize the Society’s literature as much as possible in defending your hope. For example, you may want to direct the elders to the September 15, 2012 Watchtower article entitled “Peace for A Thousand Years – And Beyond!” Show them paragraph 16 which reads:
“During family study and worship, in conversations with fellow believers, and in discussions with Bible students and interested ones, let us speak enthusiastically about our marvelous hope and prospects. This will help us to keep these vivid in our minds and hearts.”
You can remind them that the Governing Body surely knows that over 12,000 publishers who read the Watchtower magazines have the heavenly hope and when they read this information, they apply to counsel to their own lives. Thus, anointed Christians are encouraged to speak openly and enthusiastically about their heavenly hope. The Governing Body wants this hope to be vivid in our hearts and minds. And the Governing Body wants us to speak about our hope with fellow believers. You can ask them if they are suggesting you not follow the clear direction from the Governing Body.
You might also find useful information in the booklet “Bearing Thorough Witness About God’s Kingdom,” especially Chapters 4 and 5. Let them know that you are earnestly endeavoring to apply the counsel in that book to bear thorough witness about the Kingdom, which includes the heavenly hope, and that you are especially encouraged by the fine examples of Peter and John. Remind them that when Peter and John were ordered to stop preaching about their hope, they responded:
“Whether it is righteous in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, judge for yourselves. But as for us, we cannot stop speaking about the things we have seen and heard.”
– Acts 4:19-20
And when their religious leaders became furious at their steadfastness, they responded:
“We must obey God as ruler rather than men.”
– Acts 5:29
You might ask them what you should do. Should you follow the bold and courageous example of the apostles, as explained in the Society’s literature, and continue to openly speak about your hope? Or should you cower in silence in order to appease the weak consciences of those who do not understand your hope? You might ask them what authority can they share with you that trumps the Watchtower publications and the Bible itself?
Also, you can ask them how can an anointed Christian apply Jesus’ words if they are to remain silent about their hope:
“You are the light of the world. A city cannot be hid when situated upon a mountain. People light a lamp and set it, not under the measuring basket, but upon the lampstand, and it shines upon all those in the house. Likewise let your light shine before men, that they may see your fine works and give glory to your Father who is in the heavens.”
– Matthew 5:14-16
Let them know that you respect their positions of oversight in the congregation, but you wonder if it is appropriate for them to interfere in your personal worship and relationship with Jehovah. Let them know that you have made the Bible truths your own and ask why they would want to stifle that? Spiritual men, and men who are striving to be led by the spirit, will have a hard time disciplining you when you appeal to the Society’s express direction, along with the Bible.
These are, of course, only examples of how to defend your hope "with a mild temper and deep respect."(1 Peter 3:15) At the time of your meeting, the spirit may lead you in another direction.
Brother, it seems history is repeating itself within our organization. Some are actually seeking to expel sons of the Kingdom from the congregations that have indeed become more like synagogues. (John 16:2) It is distressing that much of what is taught at our meetings is about the prophets and the pre-Christian era. Sometimes it feels more like Rabbinical school than a Christian congregation.
Nevertheless, it is up to men and women such as yourself and your wife to defend the Christ and his actual, authentic, plain and open teachings. And if enough of us step forward and stand up for the Kingdom, and stand up for the Father and His Christ, we may regain our association and become preachers and teachers of the true good newsas is our destiny.
The harvest is great, but the workers are still few. (Matthew 9:37) Therefore, we ask that you please keep in touch as fellow harvest workers. We all need an interchange of encouragement, and all the more so as the day draws near. (Romans 1:11-12; Hebrews 10:25)
Our prayers are with you and your wife. And we ask all our brothers around the world to pray for you, as well as for the brothers who are currently misled, that they, too, drop the veil from their eyes (2 Corinthians 3:12-14), and see their true hope of everlasting life in the heavens with our Lord Jesus Christ.
Please let us know how things turn out.
Your Brothers in the Faith,