If you’re a Jehovah Witness, do you believe the Watch Tower society or the Bible?

Jehovah Witnesses believe in &quot:soul sleep&quot:, meaning when someone dies, they go into the grave until the rapture. There, they are in a state of unconsciousness. But this they read in their Watch Tower and Awake magazines, and not the Bible.
The apostle Paul said &quot:To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord&quot:. He’s saying here you don’t go into a state of unconsciousness, but you go directly to be with Christ.

Again in Philippians Paul says:
Phl 1:21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
Phl 1:22 But if {I am} to live {on} in the flesh, this {will mean} fruitful labor for me: and I do not know which to choose.
Phl 1:23 But I am hard-pressed from both {directions,} having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for {that} is very much better:
Phl 1:24 yet to remain on in the flesh is more necessary for your sake.

In verse 23 Paul says that he has the desire to die and be with Christ, which is much better than living. How can dying be much better than living if while dead, you’re in a state of unconsciousness?

I know Paul didn’t have the opportunity of reading Watch Tower and Awake magazines, but with his limited knowledge, he believed and taught, that when a Christian dies, they are immediately in the presence of Christ.

Any comments from Jehovah’s Witnesses?

A typical Jehovah’s Witnesses recognizes the Bible as the only infallible inspired means of knowing God’s will and purposes. Of course, the tools produced by the various Watchtower entities are valued as truthful research and study aids by many or most Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It seems rather obvious that a human must die before he can be resurrected, but his death could be of infinitesimally short duration. There is no contradiction between 1 Cor 15:51 and 1 Cor 15:42,54 because, strictly speaking, a person could endure momentary ‘dying’/’death’ without having to ‘fall asleep in death’ (which implies a duration of time during which one continues dead).
.. ..(1 Corinthians 15:42,54) So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption, it is raised up in incorruption. …But when this which is corruptible [an earthly body] puts on incorruption [a heavenly body] and this which is mortal puts on immortality, then the saying will take place that is written: “Death is swallowed up forever.”

Formerly Jewish Christians would especially have understood the term ‘fell asleep in death’ to refer to the duration of time which a person must wait in the grave until his resurrection. Isaiah prophesied that those in the graves would &quot:awake&quot: at the resurrection, and the patient man Job prayed that he could rest in the grave for some duration until his resurrection.
.. ..(Job 14:14) If an able-bodied man dies can he live again? All the days of my compulsory service I shall wait [&quot:asleep&quot:in the grave], Until my relief comes [by means of resurrection].
.. ..(Isaiah 26:19) Your dead ones will live. A corpse of mine—they will rise up. [Implying that those qualifying for resurrection are &quot:asleep&quot:…] Awake and cry out joyfully, you residents in the dust! …the earth itself will let even those impotent in death drop in birth [resurrected ones will emerge from their graves].

Before Christ’s enthronement, every person who died had to wait in the grave (or &quot:rest in peace&quot:, or &quot:lay with his forefathers&quot:, or &quot:fall asleep in death&quot:, or remain &quot:in the memorial tombs&quot:) until the resurrection. After Christ’s enthronement initiates heavenly resurrections, an anointed Christian who dies does not need to &quot:wait&quot: for any duration of time between his death and resurrection. The apostle Paul pointedly used the expression &quot:fall asleep in death&quot: rather than &quot:die&quot: because he was specifically contrasting that idea with the ones who would be resurrected instantly, rather than after some duration that might be referred to metaphorically as &quot:sleep&quot:.
.. ..(1 Corinthians 15:51-52) We shall not all fall asleep in death, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, during the last trumpet

In his letter to the anointed Christians in Thessalonica, Paul pointedly contrasted those who would have to &quot:rest&quot: during the years, decades, or centuries that would have to pass between their deaths and their resurrections soon after Christ’s enthronement.
.. ..(1 Thessalonians 4:14-17) Those who have fallen asleep in death through Jesus [that is, ‘anointed Christians who have been dead for some duration’] God will bring with him. For this is what we [inspired prophets such as Paul] tell you by Jehovah’s word, that we [anointed Christians with a heavenly hope] the living who survive to the presence of the Lord shall in no way precede [to heaven] those [anointed Christians] who have fallen asleep in death [awaiting the years, decades, centuries until Christ’s second ‘coming’ or presence]: because the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a commanding call, with an archangel’s voice and with God’s trumpet, and those who are dead in union with Christ will rise first [that is, anointed Christians who are already dead will be resurrected to heaven firstly after Christ’s heavenly enthronement]. Afterward we the living who are surviving [that is, anointed Christians who will have not yet died when Christ’s second presence begins] will, together with them, be caught away in clouds to meet the Lord in the air [upon death as humans, or eventually at Armageddon]

It is silly when anti-Witnesses pretend that Jehovah’s Witnesses are not diligent Bible students. For decades, the very name of the religion was &quot:Bible Students&quot:, and their meetings and adherents continue to demonstrate an extraordinary familiarity with the Bible.

In Heaven or unconscious in your body, they both believe that Christians will be resurrected after the Second Coming so…?

I am surely not a JW. I am a Christian. Here is a scripture for you to think about. Job 19: 25, 26, 27 &quot:I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God: I myself will see Him with my own eyes —- I and not another. How my heart yearns within me!&quot:
When we die, we will all see God Almighty alone, because we shall be judged by who we was before we died.

By the way, Lazarus was in Paradise! Right where the Thief was with Jesus when He finally died and went there to take Moses, Noah, David, etc. from Paradise to Heaven! (There was a big abyss seperating Paradise and Hades!) &quot:They&quot: do need to read up in the Real Book! (The Holy Living Word!) Jesus IS The Word and the JW’s are deluded!!

To say JWs believe the WT over the Bible is a common misunderstanding in this forum. If the Bible says something and the Watchtower bases its teaching on what the Bible says, what is it that JWs really believe in? The Bible, of course.

You might want to check out the book of Ecclesiastes.Quoting chapter 9 verse 5 and 6 from the &quot:Living Bible,&quot: &quot:For the living at least know that they will die! But the dead know nothing, they don’t even have their memories 6 Whatever they did in their lifetimes- loving, hating, envying,- is long gone, and they have no part in anything here on earth any more&quot:

The word “Hell” appears in the Old Testament approximately 31 times and, without exception, is translated from the Hebrew word “Sheol.” This same Hebrew word is also translated “pit” three different times. “Pit,” translated from Sheol, is found in Numbers 16:30,33 and Job 17:16. Hell is referred to as a pit three times, both being the same place.

Sheol is not the grave. A mistranslation–”Sheol” is also translated as grave approximately 25 times in the Old Testament, which has caused much confusion concerning the Doctrine of Hell. Jehovah’s Witnesses utilize this translational error to the fullest, claiming Hell is the grave and nothing more. When we look at the Hebrew we find that the word “gibrah” is properly used for “grave.” “Gibrah” is translated throughout the Old testament as “grave, burying place, and sepulcher,” and properly so. Sheol is never in any case in the Old testament ever referring to grave, burying place or sepulcher: but, rather a place located in the center of the earth. The grave, burying place and sepulcher houses our dead bodies, but Sheol is the compartment that contains the souls and spirits that will never die and which were in those earthly bodies.

The fact is, Jehovah’s Witnesses claim that they receive &quot:angelic direction&quot: for their activities.

Their writings from the 1930’s are rampant with references to &quot:angelic direction&quot:. We’ll consider a few.

First we must explain that they give their own meaning to the biblical term &quot:remnant&quot: who they consider to be their special &quot:governing body&quot: chosen from those 144,000 members who have a heavenly hope. This &quot:remnant&quot: rules from Brooklyn, N.Y.

&quot:Vindication&quot:, volume III, 1932, page 250 reads,

&quot:…the heavenly messengers or angels of the Lord now used by the Lord in behalf of the remnant. These angels are invisible to human eyes and are there to carry out the orders of the Lord. No doubt they first hear the instruction which the Lord issues to his remnant and then these invisible messengers pass such instruction on to the remnant.&quot:

What an admission! The Governing body of Jehovah’s Witnesses consisting of several very elderly men, claiming to be &quot:the remnant&quot: form all doctrine for Jehovah’s Witnesses. How, you may well ask? According to a book by a former member of the Governing Body, it wasn’t by prayer or study of the Bible. (Crisis of Conscience by Raymond Franz). It was supposed to be under &quot:angelic direction&quot:, but Raymond Franz left because he felt it was a man-made organization.


conundrum- If you don’t know the answer then don’t just put something up and judge others. Either answer the question or don’t. But don’t judge the author of the question in a bad light just because you don’t know the answer. That’s just plain rude. Is that what the Watchtower teaches you? Now I want to get back to my football game!!!

Sorry Ted … you’ve been given some wrong information.

Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in ‘soul sleep’ or the ‘rapture’.

Back to the drawing board old boy and dig up the truth and then we can discuss it.

Not a JW.
soul sleep is error there are literally dozens of verses that show the error:

Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return to God who gave it.
That is, the soul has an existence independent of the body, and returns to God at death.

Luke 16:19-31
Lazarus and the rich man have both died, but their souls are still alive, despite the death of their bodies (and the same is true of Abraham). All this takes place before the resurrection of their bodies, while the rich man’s brothers are still alive.

1 Peter 3:18-19
For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: by which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison.
If the spirits in prison are dead and &quot:know nothing&quot:, then why is Jesus preaching to them?

Matthew 22:31-32
…have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, &quot:I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?&quot: God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.

John 11:25-26
Jesus said unto her, &quot:I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.&quot:

Matthew 17:1,3-4
And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, and, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him. Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, &quot:Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles: one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.&quot:
Moses had died, (Deuteronomy 34:5 – So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord.) and yet, despite being dead, he is able to speak to Jesus.

It is interesting that advocates for The Watchtower and Bible Tact Society often do not answer directly.

1. Old Testament verses used out of context.
2. Various Bibles are refered to that translate cherry picked verses in a way that supports The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society dogma.
3. Various verses translated from other versions and translation are found that support The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society bible The New World Translation. This is called cherry picking sources.

First of all, you are not able to acurately speak for JW’s. They do not teach the rapture because the rapture isn’t even a word in the Bible. Second, yes the Bible DOES SAY that when you die you go into a deep sleep. The WatchTower magazines adhere strictly to what the Bible says and their articles ALWAYS provide the correct scripture reference in the article paragraphs.
Now lets look at the scriptures from YOUR Bible that say you go to sleep when you die…

Eccl 9:5,10 &quot:For the living are conscious that they will die: but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all..All that your hand finds to do, do with your very power, for there is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in She′ol, the place to which you are going.&quot:

Psalm 104:29В &quot:If you conceal your face, they get disturbed.
If you take away their spirit, they expire,
And back to their dust they go.&quot:

Psalm 146:4В &quot:His spirit goes out, he goes back to his ground:
In that day his thoughts do perish.&quot:

Ezekiel 18:4,20 &quot:Look! All the souls—to me they belong. As the soul of the father so likewise the soul of the son—to me they belong. The soul that is sinning—it itself will die..20 The soul that is sinning—it itself will die.&quot:

John 11:11-14 &quot:11В He said these things, and after this he said to them: “Laz′aВ·rus our friend has gone to rest, but I am journeying there to awaken him from sleep.” 12В Therefore the disciples said to him: “Lord, if he has gone to rest, he will get well.” 13В Jesus had spoken, however, about his death. But they imagined he was speaking about taking rest in sleep. 14В At that time, therefore, Jesus said to them outspokenly: “Laz′aВ·rus has died…&quot:

Jesus specifically said that Lazarus had been asleep but was referring to his death. So YES the Bible DOES say that we sleep when in death. And it DOES say that your spirit DIES along with your body. That is why in the begining when Jehovah punished Adam and Eve he told them that (Gen 1:19) &quot:… until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken. For dust you are and to dust you will return.&quot:
So God did not say you would go to Heaven, he said you would go to the dust, from where we were created.

Hello.You are right .But as you can see they don’t want your help.Moses Beyond.Before Jesus (who was the first fruits )Went to heaven everyone was asleep and awaiting a resurrection.Soooo wasn’t Lazarus dead before Jesus went to heaven? And in all the other texts dealing with death being as we are asleep these also died before Jesus had become THE FIRST FRUITS of THEM THAT SLEEP.Keeping scripture in context and time periods of when it was written will help you comprehend what the asker is saying.Great question and well worded.Thanks

Sorry got momentarily carried away(smile)As you can see they will not reason about it .This is because the Watchtower doesn’t see it this way.Only the bible does.

Edit Moses go back to my answer and then read what you wrote to me.Does what you said make sense to you? I never mention Abraham someone else did and you addressed me and answered them.That is what happens when you get flustered.Calm down and try again.or just delete your answers like you usually do and start over.Be calm.

Edit:Moses Beyond disappeared again ,Still hasn’t returned to correct his assumption.Guess there is some embarrassment.

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