Monday, January 24, 2011

Question: What is said at a JW Baptism?

Answer: Hello Xxxxx,

I think your question can best be answered by the following excerpts, found at
 http://corior.blogspot.com/2006/02/aspect-of-legalism-of-jehovahs.html 
I have inserted some information as well.

The newest baptismal questions from the June 1, 1985 Watchtower:

On the basis of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, have you repented of your sins and dedicated yourself to Jehovah to do his will?

Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah's Witnesses in association with God's spirit-directed organization?

Contrast these latest questions with the statements above, from the October 1, 1966 Watchtower.

According to statements published by the Watchtower Society, Christians are not dedicated to an organization. From the October 1, 1966 Watchtower, pp. 603-4:

Jehovah is the giver of life. "For with you is the source of life." (Ps. 36:9) We cannot keep everlasting life in view without staying close to Jehovah, the source of life.... This is what we mean when we dedicate our lives to Jehovah. We do not dedicate ourselves to a religion, nor to a man, nor to an organization. No, we dedicated ourselves to the Supreme Sovereign of the Universe, our Creator, Jehovah God himself. This makes dedication a very personal relationship between us and Jehovah.

Baptismal questions from the August 1, 1966 Watchtower, p. 465:

(1) Have you recognized yourself before Jehovah God as a sinner who needs salvation, and have you acknowledged to him that this salvation proceeds from him, the Father, through his Son Jesus Christ?

(2) On the basis of this faith in God and in his provision for salvation, have you dedicated yourself unreservedly to God to do his will henceforth as he reveals it to you through Jesus Christ and through the Bible under the enlightening power of the holy spirit?

(These vows are in harmony with Jesus command on baptism, found at Matt.28:19)

Finally, compare these statements to those made in the October 15, 1992 Watchtower, p. 19:

So for the Christian, baptism following dedication establishes an intimate relationship with Jehovah God, his Son Jesus Christ, and the holy spirit...

By recognizing God's authority, we draw close to him and enter into a relationship with him... We become God's property as his slaves, bought with the price of Jesus Christ's ransom sacrifice... The apostle Paul also told first-century Christians that they belonged to Jesus Christ, not to any men who might have taken the truth to them... Baptism in the name of the Son implies recognizing this fact, accepting Jesus as "the way and the truth and the life."...

At the time of dedication and baptism, therefore, we need to reflect prayerfully on what is involved in our new relationship. It requires submission to the will of God, demonstrated in the example and ransom provision of Jesus Christ, to be carried out through holy spirit as it directs all of God's servants in love and unity worldwide.

This last is a most unusual statement in that the "faithful and discreet slave" is not mentioned as directing the work, nor demanding obedience and submission. In any case, the Society has managed to get newer members to, in effect, join a worldly club from which their membership can be terminated at any time by disagreeing with the Society (disfellowshipping) while at the same time convincing these newcomers that they have only dedicated themselves to their Creator.

The fact that the Society changed the baptismal vows to protect itself legally is shown by the letters that it sends out to people who threaten with legal action for trying to enforce on them what they thought was a dedication to Jehovah alone. One such letter read:

From the date of your baptism and your *joining the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses*, you professed the Christian faith, agreed to adhere to the doctrine of Jehovah's Witnesses and agreed to submit to the rules and procedures of the ecclesiastical government of Jehovah's Witnesses.

There are more facts and Watchtower references at the above site, if you are interested.
If you have any further questions, please ask. I hope this answers your question.
Thank you,
Pearl


                  ---------------PART TWO-------------





Subject:
What did your dedication involve?
Question:
I have taken the liberty to read some of the information and answers you have posted here and from a link in one of them to your blog, and it leads me to a question.

You have some arguments against what you call "The Watchtowers" misleading the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses, saying in the most recent answer:
"The Watchtower continually goes beyond the things written (1Cor.4:6; Gal.1:8,9; Rev.8:10,11). It's leaders have forgotten the Master who bought them with his own blood (2Peter2:1; Rev.5:9)."

Do you still consider yourself one of "Jehovah's Witnesses," identifying yourself as such in public?
If so why?
If no, then why did you mention you attended the memorial? (I am assuming here- that such means you attended one at a Kingdom Hall)

The Watchtower magazine is what is used to dispense understanding of scriptures and also to explain doctrinal points in light of world events.

If you feel that the Writing committee, ie the Governing Body,
(The qualifier again being: if you still identify yourself as one of Jehovah's Witnesses)
has gone beyond there responsibility, what then is your goal in publicizing these thoughts via the internet?
Why would it not suffice to write to the organization and share with them your observations, and settle the matter within the congregation? The apostle Paul, when faced with the inappropriate behavior of Peter and the other older men, approached and reproved them to their very face.

(It would be fair to first ask, have you done this? and as such, Have you striven to share your point with the body of men taking the lead, in order to help them to see the folly you evidently have seen, for their readjustment and benefit?)

I would love to hear your thoughts on these, I await your response.
-------------------------------


Hello BeReasonable,

My "dedication" involved telling Jehovah in prayer, that I freely gave Him my life...all of what I am...  including my lifespan, my will, all my resources and abilities.
I considered Jehovah my owner; and I, His slave.
I did this before being taught by others, how to do this. I know that Jehovah accepted with approval this genuine dedication, because that very night, I was anointed. This anointing was not a self-sourced conclusion. It was a powerful, unmistakable experience I was taken through, by means of shocking contact by Holy Spirit.
Jesus said, 
"He said to him: “‘You must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment". Matt.22:37
In this outline for dedication, no one is included in that dedication but our heavenly Father. There is nothing left of our soul, for someone, or something, else.

This is in harmony with the "society's" counsel. If you go to page 182 (par.24) in the "Bible Teach" book, you will see that our dedication to God should never include a dedication to men; even if we consider such men, God's servants.
There we read,
"Remember too, that you have made a dedication to Jehovah God himself; not to a work, a cause, other humans, or an organization."

Merely saying this does not make these authors righteous.
Jehovah said,
"For the reason that this people have come near with their mouth, and they have glorified me merely with their lips, and they have removed their heart itself far away from me, and their fear toward me becomes men’s commandment that is being taught". Isa.29:13

Jesus explained this as meaning:
‘This people honors me with their lips, yet their heart is far removed from me. It is in vain that they keep worshiping me, because they teach commands of men as doctrines.’ Matt.15:8

We see that men may indeed honor God with what they say, but if they do not actually follow what they say, it makes their worship, "in vain".
It is a glaring reality, that one's standing in this organization, is dependent on one's dedication to the men in power.


Next, you ask if I consider myself as one of Jehovah's witnesses, and why.

Men may think they have the right to tell Jehovah who his witnesses are; but those who truly fear God, respect who Jehovah says his witnesses are.
HE tells US, at Isa.43:10-12: (Please note the points I emphasize)

“YOU are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “even my servant **whom I have chosen**, in order that YOU may know and have faith *in me*, and that YOU may **understand that I am the same One. Before me there was no God formed, and after me there continued to be none**. 11 I—I am Jehovah, and **besides me there is no savior**. I myself have told forth and have saved and have caused [it] to be heard, **when there was among YOU no strange [god]**. So YOU are my witnesses,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “and I am God."

We see here that the primary requirements to being one of Jehovah's Witnesses (according to Jehovah)...
**being chosen by Him to be so
**having exclusive devotion to Jehovah alone, and faith that He is the only one who can save...the only one we must worship.

The first requirement is not up to us. It is up to Jehovah. HE chooses his Chosen Ones. (1Pet.2:9; Deut.7:6)

The second requirement is very clear. Worship involves who we allow to direct our thinking and actions...who we are slaves to (Deut.11:22,18; 6:17,8).
Can we have two masters? Can we at the same time, worship and slave for God (Deut6:8), and, those who claim to be God's representatives? (Rev.13:16,11)

"Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only." Luke4:8

"Do YOU not know that if YOU keep presenting yourselves to anyone as slaves to obey him, YOU are slaves of him because YOU obey him, either of sin with death in view or of obedience with righteousness in view?" Rom.6:16

"YOU were bought with a price; stop becoming slaves of men." 1Cor.7:23

"Whatever YOU are doing, work at it whole-souled *as to Jehovah*, and not to men, for YOU know that it is from Jehovah YOU will receive the due reward of the inheritance.
**SLAVE for the Master, Christ**." Col.3:23,24

Exclusive devotion, means exactly that.

Additionally,  to serve Jehovah acceptably, we are given a clear requirement at John 4:23,24:

"Nevertheless, the hour is coming, and it is now, when the true worshipers will worship the Father *with spirit and truth*, for, indeed, the Father is looking for suchlike ones to worship him. God is a Spirit, and those worshiping him *must* worship with spirit and truth.”

We see here, that the ones Jehovah chooses to be his witnesses (Isa.43:10), not only worship exclusively, but they also worship with "spirit and truth".
To worship with spirit means that their slaving for God is not based on the "powerful signs and portents" of an organization, nor on directives of visible men who go beyond the scriptures.

God's true worshipers "MUST" also worship "with Truth".
This requirement has been dismissed, each and every time the Watchtower releases "adjustments" to former teachings.
Persistent errors are condoned with the attitude, "Don't go ahead of Jehovah's spiritual chariot", and "Wait on Jehovah". Are we insinuating that Jehovah chooses to wallow in untruth? (Rom.3:4)

Jehovah made clear to me that He does consider the anointed within "Jehovah's Witnesses", as members of his "household" of slaves.
I was loyal to it, as Jesus was during his life... even while the leadership of God's house had grown corrupt and unresponsive.
Jesus could not be accused of no longer being a Jew, just because he was not in harmony with these corrupt men. So too, I do not feel that I have lost my loyal standing with God, as His chosen witness, just because I am not in harmony with the current corrupt men in power (Rom.2:29). Eventually, Jesus left that corruption behind (Matt.23:38,39). They killed him for that insult, as the corrupt leadership today tries to kill God's loyal ones, spiritually (Isa.66:5; John16:2; Matt.10:22; 24:49; Rev.13:13; 11:7; 6:9,10,11) by disfellowshipping. Jesus said that when we personally "catch sight" of this corruption....we too are to "flee" (Matt.24:15,16) (pearl-disgustingthing.blogspot.com). Faithful slaves of God are refusing to make men or their organization an Idol, and they are paying for that loyalty to God by being persecuted, thrown down, thrown out, and trampled by those not anointed. This fulfills numerous end-time prophesies concerning the spiritual temple priesthood being trespassed, overrun, and cast down by spiritual Gentiles. (http://pearl-disgustingthing.blogspot.com/)
  (http://4womaninthewilderness.blogspot.com/2013/01/what-is-jew-what-is-gentile-answers-to.html)

I am a servant of Jehovah God as long as I teach His truth and love Him alone, with all that I am. He chose me, and has never required of me, nor of Jesus, that we should leave truth in order to honor men. As long as I am a witness of the true God and slave of HIS WILL, I will be considered *by Him*, one of his loyal witnesses (Psalm15:1,2,3,4,5; 2Sam.22:26; Ps.18:25,26,30). Jehovah does not require men to validate his choice. (1Sam.16:7; Rom.2:29; John5:41,42,44; 12:43)

You said
"The Watchtower magazine is what is used to dispense understanding of scriptures and also to explain doctrinal points in light of world events."

Do you realize that this can only be true if the steward is giving the "proper food at the proper time?
Your statement can only be true if the Watchtower's content is truthful and up-to-date.

How would non-anointed sheep know if this were so, or not?

Did you not read that the time of the end would include a deception, that "would mislead, if possible, even the chosen ones"? (Matt.24:24,25)
How then, would those not anointed with this blessing of spirit and insight fare? (1John2:20,27)
Would they be able to discern these misleading lies by "false Christs (Greek-false anointed)", who "mislead many"? Matt.24:11,4,5,24,25; 7:13
If even those blessed will fall (Rev.13:7; 1Tim.4:1; Rev.16:13,14; 2Thess.2:9,4), those not so graced, will also fall.
The "earth" will indeed swallow Satan's end-time deceptions, that are aimed at these final chosen ones (Rev.12:15,16). (http://4womaninthewilderness.blogspot.com/2012/12/earth-swallows-satans-river-rev1216.html)

When you said, "The Watchtower magazine is what is used to dispense understanding of scriptures and also to explain doctrinal points in light of world events."......
It is clear that you have been mislead into believing that fulfillment of prophecy will manifest itself in Satan's world.
Have you not read that Satan is in full control of what takes place in his own domain, the world? (1John5:19)
Do you assume that he is volunteering his realm to fulfill scriptural truth? (John8:44) If you assume that Satan does not know the scriptures, including prophecy, the Bible reveals otherwise (Matt.4:5,6). If you assume that God has not really given Satan full control of this planet and all life on it since the garden of Eden, again, you are mistaken (Job41:11; 1John5:19). 

In fact, Satan is intentionally creating a counterfeit fulfillment of prophecy, knowing that this deception will mislead many anointed "stars" into "falling from heaven" 2Pet.3:17; Rev.2:5; 12:4; 1:16,20; 2Cor.11:3; 1Tim.4:1) (pearl-satansthrone.blogspot.com). They are taken captive by this deception (Col.2:8; Rev.13:10)
The sign of the end which Jesus gave, both in Matt.24 and the book of Revelation (Rev.1:1); is fulfilled not in Satan's world, but in among those figures who are invited to inherit the Kingdom to come. Satan's world is not giving birth to the Kingdom (Job.14:4). The genuine "labor pains" then, are not to be found there. The "woman" is the one with the labor pains of the Kingdom's birth (Rev.12:1,2; Gal.4:26). (pearl-laborpains.blogspot.com)
The birth pangs involve Kingdom figures. Those figures are Christ, his "angel messengers"; and Satan with his false "ministers of righteousness"/"angels"/"false prophets" (2Cor.11:14,15). This enmity (Gen3:15) intensifies, as Satan perceives that his time grows short (Rev.12:12,17). The "labor pain" signs that we expect prior to the end and birth of the Kingdom (Matt.24:8), are not with the "world". For, the "world" is not giving birth to God's Kingdom.......
the "woman" is. (pearl-thewoman.blogspot.com)
Therefore, the signs/labor pains, are found with her (John16:20,21,22,23; Isa.26:17) not within Satan's world. The fulfillment of prophecy, is not in Satan's physical world. (pearl-sign.blogspot.com)
It is within the Body of Christ....those within the "woman" Covenant (Gal.4:26,24,19). 
Therefore, the "Watchtower" magazine's mission to draw correlations between Satanic manipulation and scripture, is in no way, "the proper food at the proper time"....but rather such an effort only assists Satan, to mislead the Holy Ones (Matt.24:24; 2Cor.11:15) into a physical perspective (1Cor.2:12,13,14,15; Luke17:20; Rev.3:2,3; 1Thess.5:2).


You said:
"If you feel that the Writing committee, ie the Governing Body,
(The qualifier again being: if you still identify yourself as one of Jehovah's Witnesses)
has gone beyond there responsibility, what then is your goal in publicizing these thoughts via the internet?
Why would it not suffice to write to the organization and share with them your observations, and settle the matter within the congregation? The apostle Paul, when faced with the inappropriate behavior of Peter and the other older men, approached and reproved them to their very face."


Do you not know that truth leads to life, and lies lead to death?
Do you not know that the sole purpose of the anointed is to be "vessels of mercy"?
If we do not sound a distinct call to save the lives of those being mislead, we are bloodguilty (Eze.3:3,4,7,17,18; Rev.10:9; 22:10).

You must be told, that not only I, but hundreds, if not thousands of anointed; have sent thousands of letters. These continue to be sent by anointed ones around the globe; begging the Governing Body to heed our pleas for adjustments of errors (Luke16:1,2; Matt.24:49).
These men seem more concerned with their perfect image and absolute power, than with truth. That is the frightening reality. I have personally received a direct response from the governing body, demanding subjection to them and their scripture-defying doctrines. My respectful request for scriptural backing for particular doctrinal assertions, remains unheeded (Mark7:6,7,9,13).

Do you not recall the apostles' response to the religious leaders of God's first century house?
"We must obey God as ruler, rather than men". Acts 5:28,29

As far as talking to the local elders about this...yes, I have spoken to some of them. However, the ardor with which these men generally pledge allegiance to the Governing Body (in tandem with the syllabus of the "elder school") creates men who prioritize enforcing loyalty to men, over loyalty to truth.
These men have been taught to have eyes, only to "rip open" those who do not share in the worship of their human gods (Matt.7:6) and their own Organizational "Image" (Rev.13:14,15; 17:3) which has replaced the anointed priesthood as God's place of worship (2Thess.2:4; Rev.11:2; Isa.14:13; Dan.11:35,36; 8:12; Rev.12:3) (Eph.2:19,20,21,22; 1Cor.3:16) (Num.18:7; Eze.44:6,7,8,9; Isa.66:5; 2Chron.13:9; John16:2). Concerning the responsibility to witness to spiritual Gentiles who *do not want truth*, but only want power to contradict, usurp, and destroy, Jesus said:

"Do not give what is holy to dogs, neither throw YOUR pearls before swine, that they may never *trample them under their feet (Rev.11:2; Luke21:24) and turn around and rip YOU open* (2Kings8:12). 
This is the grievous reality of what occurs when scriptures are raised outside of the "official interpretation".
"Interpretations belong to God" (Gen.40:8). Therefore, the truthful interpretation will be found in scripture, not in publications whose explanations are often devoid of scriptural backing. In general, elders adhere to these doctrines of men, rather than consider a scriptural alternative (Heb.4:12; 2Tim.3:16,17; 1Thess.4:8; Luke10:16). In the case of these, Yhwh considers such men dogs and swine...willing to eat anything...poised to attack those who would try to take away the filth they greedily gulp down.

The elders have now been instructed to seek out and expel; not those disloyal to truth, ...but those disloyal to men. These now prefer "the glory of men, rather than the glory of God". They have breastplates of iron (Rev.9:9). Their heart is beyond reach. They are deceived, and Jehovah is allowing it because of their hard heart condition. (2Thess.2:10,11,12).
I am well aware of their spirit, and am commanded by Christ to be cautious and innocent amid these wolves. I am under no obligation to "sow seed amid thorns" Jer.4:3; Luke8:11,7).
At a recent annual meeting, a GB member stood up and called out to his audience, "Will you close ranks with the Governing body?" He repeated this question until the audience responded with standing applause. One attendee enthusiastically commented, "I think if we were asked to kill for them, we would!" 
Where is the loyalty due our God? Why did this man not rouse such loyalty to our Heavenly Father instead? (John7:17,18; 5:43,44) 
In fact, those present are expected to "kill" for the GB. Ask all those presently being expelled as apostates by the minions of this wicked steward.
Do you recognize this prophetic pattern yet?...
of fallen anointed directing/riding a Gentile beast?

You asked, "why did you mention you attended the memorial?"
The simple answer is, because Jesus commands his chosen ones to do so (Luke22:19). Did Jesus and the apostles observe the Lord's Evening Meal inside a Kingdom Hall? Do you know of a scripture which indicates that this is necessary?
The arrangement outlined in the scriptures, is that the anointed ones gather for this remembrance (1Cor.11:33). This directive is not considered nor followed within the Organization's arrangements. Those chosen by Almighty God to partake of the emblems, do so in isolation there, within a crowd of those not invited by Christ, to partake.
I will never enter a Kingdom Hall again....for this defiant "Memorial" arrangement, or for any other purpose. To do so would violate my Master's command to "His people" (Luke21:21,22; Matt.24:15,16; Rev.18:4; 1Pet.2:9,10).



You have been taught that all the "end-time" prophesies concerning the final remnant of anointed, were fulfilled 100 years ago. This is not possible, nor true (2Thess.2:1,2,3). I hope you will continue to read and consider more of the articles I have written, if you wish to be set free from this captivity of the mind. John 8:32

Jehovah is well aware of the apostasy in his house concerning the wicked steward (Matt.24:48,49). When these prophesies are properly applied, the picture of our time and circumstance becomes very clear. This IS, the Great Tribulation. It will test all the "earth" (God's people), regarding their loyalty to God, rather than men. 
(http://thebeast-obadiah.blogspot.com/)
I truly hope you will read more concerning these things. You will find all the scriptures to clarify this truth, in the articles.

You are in my prayers,
Pearl

Since this was originally posted, I did declare the things I knew to be truth, in order to obey God (Eph.4:25; Ps.15:2; 1Cor.9:16; 1Tim.4:16). Is that not the whole purported meaning behind becoming one of "Jehovah's Witnesses"...to preach the truth to all? Yet I was hypocritically condemned and thrown out for doing that very thing. Why? Because the real truth of the Bible, is not permitted under the spiritual monopoly of the Wild Beast, and it's commerce of spiritual goods (Isa.55:1,2; Matt.25:9,10; Rev.3:18; 13:17)
I do not regret my imitating Christ at all (Matt.16:21,24; 5:11,12; John15:18). All those sealed, are so required (Mark8:35; Matt.10:22,23; Luke22:28,29; 1Pet.2:21; Rom.8:17; Rev.6:9,10,11; 11:7; 20:4)
Those who are faithful slaves of God are marked as such by their obedience to His teachings of truth (Rev.7:3; 14:1; Deut.6:6,8);
not as obedient slaves to the lies of the Wild Beast (Rev.13:16,17,8)
pearl-666.blogspot.com
http://4womaninthewilderness.blogspot.com/2013/05/mark-of-beast.html


Is this not the essence of a genuine baptismal dedication to God, and not a vow to men?