The expression on my face had to look similar to the picture on the left. I couldn’t believe my new Jehovah’s Witness friend went in the direction he did in an attempt to prove his position. The following is about 10-15 minutes of our two hour discussion. We talked about a lot of things and he even opened up to me about a good deal of his personal history, but this part of the discussion really stood out to me. You will understand why after you read the following.
The context of our discussion is that my JW friend had emailed me a few Watchtower articles attempting to explain how 1 Corinthians 11:26 doesn’t mean that the Memorial needs to be celebrated until Jesus returns like the passage states. Instead, it supposedly means that the Memorial will one day cease to be celebrated because all of the anointed will die off and go to heaven. The verse reads in the New World Translation; “For as often as YOU eat this loaf and drink this cup, YOU keep proclaiming the death of the Lord, until he arrives.” I see a HUGE difference between Jesus arriving and the dead leaving. The information he sent to me was just the text of a portion of the Watchtower articles. There were no references or anything provided with the information. Here is the beginning of our discussion.
JW- Did you get a chance to read the information I emailed you?
KW- Yes. Did you write this?
JW-No, it is from the Watchtower magazine.
KW- There are no references. Who wrote this?
JW- The faithful and discreet slave. Part of the 144,000 people that we mentioned last time we met.
KW- Well, that narrows it down. Who was it though?
JW- I don’t know. It is published world-wide. The governing body is in Brooklyn, New York and they decide what is written.
KW- But we don’t know who these people are?
JW- We can find out, but I don’t know who these people are personally.
KW- Ok, I am going to ask you to try to look at things from my perspective.
JW- (Hesitantly) OK…?
KW- I appreciate you giving me this literature so that I can try to understand this stuff, but for me, part of understanding it is knowing who wrote it, understanding what their background is and if they even have the authority to write something like this. All I have here are sheets of information written by people we don’t know. That just strikes me as a bit odd as to why I am supposed to believe it.
(My JW friend goes into more about the organization in Brooklyn their facilities in WallKill, New York and how the Governing Body is part of the 144,000. The faithful and discreet slave will provide food at the proper time. He then states;)
JW- It is the same thing about us not knowing who translated the New World Translation.
JW- The New World Translation, the one you downloaded on your iPad. It won’t give you any names of the translators.
KW- So not only do you not know who wrote the information we are to believe, you don’t know who translated your Bible?
KW- That doesn’t strike you as odd?
JW- No. It has a foreword… They didn’t want to draw undue attention to themselves.
KW- Now that brings attention to it because I want to know who they are. If the names were provided, we could see who they are, check their qualifications and be done with it, but if they are not even telling me who they are… Let’s see. Now I have information from people I don’t know quoting Bibles translated from other people who I don’t know and can’t verify their qualifications as translators.
JW- This translation is highly acknowledged by experts in this field.
KW- Like who?
JW- Bible experts. I’m not a fan of “Jeopardy” but one of the questions on the show was, “What is the most accurate Bible translation?”
KW- On a game show?
KW- Let me spell this out for you. I am getting information from people I don’t know, quoting a Bible from scholars who refuse to identify themselves, but it is OK and I am supposed to take their word for the validity of their translation because it appeared on a game show.
KW- I am going to have to look into this.
I have heard this claim in the past and remember looking into it. I wanted to do a little bit more research on this to see if anything new had been reported. The whole story is a hoax. J! Archive is a fan created archive of Jeopardy Questions. When you search the archive for “New World Translation,” in all seasons, there are zero results and none of the results for “Jehovah” have anything to do with the New World Translation.
The rest of our conversation was similar to the above. He kept trying to prove to me that Jesus has been present since 1914, but that He is really in heaven and will never again be on the earth. I’m still not getting how Jesus is present, but He has yet to arrive. Oh, and one more thing.
Jesus went to heaven in 33-34 AD and was not present on the earth until 1914. Since 1914 His presence is now on the earth even though He has not changed His location and is still in heaven. However, Satan was cast out of the heavens in 1914 and he is now present on the earth because his location has changed. The look on my JW friend’s face was similar to mine when I had him explain that one to me.
Next week we agreed to talk about John 1:3. He asked me if I believed Jesus was God so I took him to this verse. We talked about it a bit today and will follow up on it more the next time we meet. I used an argument I learned from Stand To Reason years ago and it went very well. I’ll report more on it after we meet next week.