QUESTIONS & RESPONSES
06/30/16 - Wife unites with husband in the one true hope.
On June 12, 2016, we received the following inquiry:
“JWSurvey analyzes the public answer to the question can a person voluntarily leave being a Jehovah's Witnesses? [link] What do you think about that?”
To the author, thank you for your email. We read the article on JWSurvey and we agree with the analysis. It is well written and fairly and comprehensively addresses the issue. We notice that many ex-Jehovah Witness websites are making good arguments against the way the Watchtower organization practices its shunning policies. In light of the recent District Convention program that glorifies shunning of close family members, we expect even more outrage. Their shunning policy is one of many gross errors in teachings and practices in the Watchtower organization, such as misunderstanding the blood issue, false prophecies, and their own perceived superiority over others. We applaud all those who are attempting to open the eyes of Jehovah’s Witnesses to these errors.
It is not so much that there is a policy of shunning as it is the way their shunning policy is practiced. Most would agree that if someone engaged in gross misconduct that threatened the safety of the congregation, such as child sexual abuse, shunning would be appropriate. But the Watchtower organization practices shunning for simply exercising freedom of speech. One need not challenge Watchtower authority to suffer the wrath of shunning. Simply raising a question regarding a doctrine or something said in a public talk or printed in a publication is more than enough to be subjected to a judicial hearing. This is very deceptive.
Prior to baptism, raising questions was welcomed. No new baptism candidate would suspect that raising questions after baptism and checking facts in the spirit of the ancient Bereans (Acts 17:11) could result in the loss of communication with all family and friends in the organization. If that were known, we suspect very few people would subject themselves to baptism with Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Sadly, most who now complain about the policy of shunning have engaged in shunning others themselves at one time or another in their Watchtower career. It seems it is only when the shunning becomes personal that the outrageousness of the practice is understood. That is why those who are active in the organization simply cannot see the real impact of this horrific practice. But as the Watchtower organization continues its crack down on free speech, more and more Jehovah’s Witnesses will have a shocking first hand awakening.
Our part in helping Jehovah’s Witnesses is to help them to build their personal relationship with God. Rather than going down the list of errors in Watchtower teachings, we choose to primarily focus on one issue, the one we feel is most important – sonship with God and the heavenly career. We believe that once a person understands that he or she is a faith son of God, beholding to no man and no organization, a domino effect occurs that releases them from the errors of manmade religious authorities and saves them from further Watchtower abuse. They regain their freeness of speech and can then leave as victors, not victims, and with their faith in tact.
Of course, by leaving the Watchtower organization, many will indeed suffer shunning. But enduring shunning is not new. Jesus explained to the 1st century Christians that by taking a stand with Christ, they will be expelled from the Synagogues. (John 16:1-2) It was a severe punishment for that small band of Christian Jews, but they found comfort in Jesus promise that all those who lose mother, father, brother or sister for his sake will gain more now and in the system to come. (Mattthew 19:29) Many ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses who are being shunned due to their taking a stand with Christ are finding comfort in that promise today as they discover that they are part of a much larger and more loving brotherhood. They consider it a high honor to suffer persecution from men, family and so called friends for the sake of their loyalty to Christ Jesus their heavenly Father.
There is a parallel we draw from what happened in the 1st century just before Jerusalem’s destruction. The Jews were engaged in a controversy with the Romans. What was Jesus’ position? Did he try to get the Jews to change their view? Did he try to ignite public outrage? No. He did not get embroiled in the controversy. He said to the Jews, “Pay back, therefore, Caesar’s things to Caesar, but God’s things to God.” (Matthew 22:21) And then he went about preaching the good news of the kingdom. Later, he warned his followers that the Romans will mount an attack upon Jerusalem sometime in their generation, but that they should not become embroiled in the controversy either. Instead, he told them they should flee to the mountains and not look back.
So, in imitation of our Lord, we choose to not get embroiled in the many controversies engulfing the Watchtower organization. We choose to keep our focus on the more important matters of sonship with God and the eternal heavenly career, and leave controversies outside of these to others. And, like Christ, we encourage all who do find their sonship to flee the organization as soon as they are able, and begin experience the real freedom of the children of God.
While we take a more direct and simpler path to promoting spiritual freedom, we recognize the benefit of others who take a more broad path of exposing all the errors of the Watchtower organization. In the final analysis, as Jesus explained, all will reap what they have sown. The attacks against the organization are what they are rightfully reaping. But the faith sons of God who have found their sonship with God know that the best way to help those still inside the organization is by helping them build a personal relationship with God as his Sons so they will have the strength to flee as victors.
On June 30, 2016, we received the following email:
I just wanted to send an email to thank you for all the work you do. My husband and I both grew up in the Jehovah’s Witness organisation, but recently my husband realised and awoke to his sonship. This was a very hard time for me because it revealed so many contradictions in what I believed and I felt so very lost. I felt like I was going to lose him, that I would remain on earth and he in heaven. That to me didn't feel like a hope anymore. I felt devastated because it felt like we were being separated through different hopes. Being a witness of Jehovah, it didn't sit right with me. I know Jehovah to be a God of love and it felt quite unloving and I couldn't understand why my hope felt lost, so I knew it couldn't be right. So I prayed intensely and I decided I had to go back to basics, I had to change my points of reference. I decided I would just use scripture, and nothing else, I would let scripture answer scripture and pray for help from my Heavenly Father to answer my questions. I prayed and I prayed and I read and read!!
The memorial came and passed and my husband partook of the emblems, but in the meantime something was awaking within me and I was starting to wonder if I also had a heavenly hope, but I was scared and still very confused. I continued to read my bible and to study.
I was engrossed in it, and because I wasn't looking at it through a filter anymore but just reading the plain and open teachings and being completely honest with myself I couldn't believe the things I'd read my whole life and missed! I went from feeling intense grief and sadness, to feeling over joyed and happy, I now understand my heavenly hope and once again feel unified with my husband with regard our beliefs about the future. I've never felt closer to my Heavenly Father than I do now, I can honestly say I have never felt his spirit and help more than I do at this point in my life.
I eventually stumbled upon your website, and I cried tears of joy. All the things you wrote about were the same things I had come to understand. I feel compelled to thank you for being a shining light and a help, and for your love, I can't tell you how much I've appreciated it. We are only in our very early 30's, we have a small family and now we are concentrating on our little unit and helping our children to grow in an accurate understanding of their Heavenly Father.
Thank you dear brothers. My warmest love and Thanks. (1 Thessalonians 1:2,3)”
To the author, thank you for the lovely email. What you write about is being experienced all over the world between husbands and wives among Jehovah’s Witnesses. And like you, many times the couple becomes united in the one true hope, which leads to an even greater union and a much closer, authentic and impenetrable bond. So congratulations for gaining life as well as oneness with your mate.
Sadly, we continue to hear from husbands whose wives have chosen to turn aside from their husbands and yoke themselves instead to the Governing Body. While such a wife may believe she is acting in faith, what she is really doing is breaking that three-fold cord between her, her husband, and the Heavenly Father, and breaking the marital vow to stick with her husband. She is setting herself up for misery of the acutest kind when she realizes that her new ‘husband’ does not care about her as much as she thought and many times does not even know her name.
So we thank you for your permission to publish your email in hopes that it will encourage more wives to draw closer to their husbands, and husbands closer to their wives.