Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania

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Avoid independent thinking... questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization.

The Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, headquartered in New York City, is the main legal entity used by the Jehovah's Witnesses religious faith. It is often referred to as The Watchtower, which is also the name of its best-known publication. This corporation usually holds copyrights to literature published by Jehovah's Witnesses.

Quotes[edit]

WTBTS publications[edit]

Centuries before, anticipating the settlement of North America by a liberty-loving people, and the founding of a government favorable to enlightenment, Satan had sought to forestall it through the voyages of Columbus and the resulting effort to people it with Spaniards and other backward races under the influence of Rome. This undertaking failed.
Any saving of life accomplished by transfusion is short-lived. And doing it in disobedience of God's commands could cost one eternal life.
Is there any question as to who is this Michael the archangel? He is no one else but Jesus Christ the only-begotten Son of God!
We can be sure that dinosaurs were created by Jehovah for a purpose, even if we do not fully understand that purpose at this time. They were no mistake, no product of evolution.
  • There are probably as many as a hundred colored brethren on the Watch Tower lists, some of them very clear in the truth, and very earnest in its service, financially and otherwise. We have received letters from several of these, who had intended engaging in the volunteer work, expressing surprise that in the call for volunteers in the March 1st issue we restricted the inquiry to the white Protestant churches. They rightly realized that we have not the slightest of race prejudice, and that we love the colored brethren with just the same warmth of heart that we love the white, and they queries therefore why such a distinction should be made in the call. The reason is that so far as we are able to judge, colored people have less education that whites - many of them quite insufficient to permit them to profit by such reading as we have to give forth. Our conclusion therefore is based upon the supposition that reading matter distributed to a colored congregation would more than half of it be utterly wasted, and a very small percentage indeed likely to yield good results. We advise, therefore, that where Watch Tower literature is introduced to colored people it be not by promiscuous circulation, but only to those who give evidence of some ear for the truth.
    • Zion's Watch Tower. WTBTS. 1900 April 15. p. 122. 
  • While it is true that the white race exhibits some qualities of superiority over any other, we are to remember that there are wide differences in the same Caucasian (Semitic and Aryan) family; and also we should remember that some of the qualities which have given this branch of the human family its preeminence in the world are not such as can be pointed to as in all respects admirable... The secret of the greater intelligence and aptitude of the Caucasian undoubtedly in great measure is to be attributed to the commingling of blood amongst its various branches; and this was evidently forced in large measure by circumstances under divine control.
    • Zion's Watch Tower. WTBTS. 1902 July 15. p. 215-216. 
  • "Can the Ethiopian change his skin?" We answer, No. But all will admit that what the Ethiopian cannot do for himself God could readily do for him. The difference between the races of men and the differences between their languages have long been arguments against the solidarity of the human family. The doctrine of restitution has also raised the question. How could all men be brought to perfection and which color of skin was the original? The answer now provided. God can change the Ethiopian's skin in his own due time.
    • Zion's Watch Tower. WTBTS. 1904 February 15. p. 52-53. 
  • If nature favors the colored brethren and sisters in the exercise of humility it is that much to their advantage, if they are rightly exercised by it. A little while, and our humility will work out for our good. A little while, and those who shall have been faithful to their Covenant of Sacrifice will be granted new bodies, spiritual beyond the veil, where color and sex distinctions will be no more. A little while, and the Millennial Kingdom will be inaugurated, which will bring restitution to all mankind - restitution to the perfection of mind and body, feature and color, to the grand original standard, which God declared "very good," and which was lost for a time through sin, but which is soon to be restored by the powerful kingdom of Messiah.
    • Zion's Watch Tower. WTBTS. 1914 April 1. p. 105-106. 
  • From a criminal viewpoint the desirability of sobering the southern negro speaks volumes for national prohibition.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1919 October 15. p. 105-106. 
  • We know that the days of divine inspiration are over. They ended when John gave to the church a record of the wonderful visions of Patmos. But Satan has at intervals thrust upon the world during the centuries following works claiming divine origin. A good modern example is Mrs. Eddy's "Science and Health, with Key to the Scriptures". Not one single book of the Bible was written by a woman.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1927 November 30. p. 140-143. 
  • Centuries before, anticipating the settlement of North America by a liberty-loving people, and the founding of a government favorable to enlightenment, Satan had sought to forestall it through the voyages of Columbus and the resulting effort to people it with Spaniards and other backward races under the influence of Rome. This undertaking failed.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1927 November 30. p. 140-143. 
  • [The medical profession is] an institution founded on ignorance, error, and superstition. Some day so-called medical science will discover that all its "discoveries" have disclosed nothing but its own ignorance.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1929 January 9. p. 245. 
  • It is generally believed that the curse which Noah pronounced upon Canaan was the origin of the Black race. Certain it is that when Noah said, "Cursed be Canaan, a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren," he pictured the future of the Colored race. They have been and are a race of servants, but now in the dawn of the twentieth century, we are all coming to see this matter of service in its true light and to find that the only real joy in life is in serving others; not bossing them. There is no servant in the world as good as a good Colored servant, and the joy that he gets from rendering faithful service is one of the purest joys there is in the world.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1929 July 24. p. 702. 
  • It is falsely charged by our enemies that we have received financial support for our work from the Jews. Nothing is farther from the truth. Up to this hour there never has been the slightest bit of money contributed to our work by Jews. We are the faithful followers of Christ Jesus and beheve upon Him as the Savior of the world, whereas the Jews entirely reject Jesus Christ and emphatically deny that he is the Savior of the world sent of God for man's good. This of itself should be sufficient proof to show that we receive no support from Jews and that therefore the charges against us are maliciously false and could proceed only from Satan, our great enemy.
    • 1934 Yearbook. WTBTS. 1934. p. 134. 
  • The greatest and the most oppressive empire on earth is the Anglo-American empire. By that is meant the British Empire, of which the United States of America forms a part. It has been the commercial Jews of the British-American empire that have built up and carried on Big Business as a means of exploiting and oppressing the people of many nations.
    • 1934 Yearbook. WTBTS. 1934. p. 134. 
  • For many years our organization has put forth an unselfish and persistent effort to do good to the people. Our American brethren have greatly assisted in the work in Germany, and with money freely contributed, and that at a time when all Germany was in dire distress. Now because it appears that Germany may soon be free from oppression and that the people may be lifted up, Satan, the great enemy, puts forth his endeavors to destroy that benevolent work in this land.
    • 1934 Yearbook. WTBTS. 1934. p. 138. 
  • Let us remind the government and the people of Germany that it was the League of Nations compact that laid upon the shoulders of the German people the great unjust and unbearable burdens.
    • 1934 Yearbook. WTBTS. 1934. p. 138. 
  • The people of Germany have suffered great misery since 1914 and have been the victims of much injustice practiced upon them by others. The Nationalists have declared themselves against all such unrighteousness and announced that 'Our relationship to God is high and holy'. Since our organization fully endorses these righteous principles and is engaged solely in carrying forth the work of enlightening the people concerning the Word of Jehovah God, Satan by subtilty endeavors to set the government against our work and destroy it because we magnify the importance of knowing and serving God.
    • 1934 Yearbook. WTBTS. 1934. p. 141-142. 
  • Thinking people would rather have smallpox than vaccination, because the latter sows the seed of syphilis, cancers, eczema, erysipelas, scrofula, consumption, even leprosy and many other loathsome affections. Hence the practice of vaccination is a crime, an outrage and a delusion.
    • The Golden Age. WTBTS. 1929 May 1. p. 502. 
  • "It clearly appears that Jehovah by Christ Jesus is doing his work on earth among his people and hence is guiding his people in the right way according to his promise... Thus the Lord declares he has entrusted his people with the privilege and obligation of telling his message... Jehovah having thus favored his people, they must be true to him and speak his word to others... The Lord does not say to speak the words of wisdom of man, nor to be influenced or guided by the word of man. Those who are convinced that The Watchtower is publishing the opinion or expression of a man should not waste time in looking at it at all, because a man's opinion proves nothing except when that opinion is based wholly upon the Word of God. Those who believe that God uses The Watchtower as a means of communicating to his people, or of calling their attention to his prophecies, should study The Watchtower with thankfulness of heart and give Jehovah God and Christ Jesus all the honor and credit and give neither honor nor credit to any man. The prophecy of Obadiah shows clearly that the identity of the persons or individuals engaged in God's service is not now material.
    • The Watchtower. WTBTS. 1942 January 1. p. 5. 
  • Any saving of life accomplished by transfusion is short-lived. And doing it in disobedience of God's commands could cost one eternal life. No temporary good done could justify this permanent great loss.
    • Awake!. WTBTS. 1951 May 22. p. 415. 
  • The matter of vaccination is one for the individual that has to face it to decide for himself. Each individual has to take the consequences for whatever position and action he takes toward a case of compulsory vaccination, doing so according to his own conscience and his appreciation of what is for good health and the interests of advancing God's work. And our Society cannot afford to be drawn into the affair legally or take the responsibility for the way the case turns out.
    After consideration of the matter, it does not appear to us to be in violation of the everlasting covenant made with Noah, as set down in Genesis 9:4, nor contrary to God's related commandment at Leviticus 17:10-14... Hence all objection to vaccination on Scriptural grounds seems to be lacking.
    • The Watchtower. WTBTS. 1952 December 15. p. 764. 
  • What happened to the perfect fleshly body of Jesus after his death? Was it preserved so that in time men will look upon it in worship? or does Jesus still have this fleshly body in the heavens, "spiritualized" so that it can be seen and worshipped? Neither. The Scriptures answer: It was disposed of by Jehovah God, dissolved into its constituent elements or atoms... The Devil wanted to obtain the fleshly body of Jesus after his death to induce some to worship it and use it for indecent false religious purposes, thus reproaching Jehovah God... So God caused Jesus' body to disappear, but not corrupt, meaning that it was dissolved, disintegrated back into the elements from which all human bodies are made.
    • . WTBTS. 1953. pp. 518. 
  • The first essential for study is the right condition of mind and heart, appreciating that Jehovah grants understanding only to the meek, and not to the stiff-necked. If we have love for Jehovah and for the organization of his people we shall not be suspicious, but shall, as the Bible says, 'believe all things,' all the things that The Watchtower brings out, inasmuch as it has been faithful in giving us a knowledge of God's purposes and guiding us in the way of peace, safety and truth from its inception to this present day.
    • Qualified to be Ministers. WTBTS. 1955. pp. 156. 
  • In recent years in many lands a beard or long hair on a man attracts immediate notice and may, in the minds of the majority, classify such a person undesirably with extremists or as rebels against society. God's ministers want to avoid making any impression that would take attention away from their ministry or hinder anyone from listening to the truth. They know that people are watching true Christians very critically and that to a great extent they judge the entire congregation and the good news by the minister's appearance as a representative of the congregation.
    • Watchtower. WTBTS. May 12, 1968. pp. 288. 
  • Those who submit to such operations [organ transplants] are thus living off the flesh of another human. This is cannibalistic... Jehovah God did not grant permission for humans to try to perpetuate their lives by cannibalistically taking into their bodies human flesh, whether chewed or in the form of whole organs or body parts taken from others.
    • The Watchtower. WTBTS. 1969 November 15. pp. 704. 
  • The features as noted about this "strong angel" combine to indicate that he represents or stands for the glorified Lord Jesus Christ, who before his human birth was the archangel Michael... Is there any question as to who is this Michael the archangel? He is no one else but Jesus Christ the only-begotten Son of God! He is the one who, before our Common Era began, was the heavenly prince of Jehovah's people, including Daniel. Never did he renounce the right to that heavenly name, even when he became a perfect man here on earth in order to work for the interests of God's Messianic kingdom and to ransom all mankind by offering himself to God for a perfect human sacrifice. After his resurrection from the dead and his return to heaven, he resumed that heavenly name.
    • Then Is Finished the Mystery of God. WTBTS. 1969. pp. 249. 
  • Extreme hair styles can easily lead one into a trap of the Devil also, and cause others to stumble. For example, a young man in the United States was making fine progress in his study of the Bible, and he was moved to share with an experienced Witness in preaching to others about the good things he was learning from the Bible. From early youth he had let his beard grow, and since some in the business community wore beards, he felt that his wearing one in preaching to others would be acceptable generally. But in speaking to a lady he was unable to do more than introduce himself, when she said: "I'm sorry, young man, I do not want to become involved in student revolt." No amount of explanation after this sufficed to clear up the misimpression. After the conversation ended with the closing of the door, he asked the experienced Witness what had happened. He was invited to consider his appearance in relation to what he claimed to be, a servant of God. Not wanting to be responsible for even one person's being stumbled so as to miss the way to everlasting life, this new Kingdom publisher shaved off his beard. Would you be willing to do the same or to make similar adjustments if your appearance gave the wrong impression in a certain community?
    • Watchtower. WTBTS. August 15, 1975. pp. 500-501. 
  • Avoid independent thinking... questioning the counsel that is provided by God's visible organization.
    • Watchtower. WTBTS. 1983 January 15. p. 22. 
  • It may be argued, too, that organ transplants are different from cannibalism since the "donor" is not killed to supply food... While the Bible specifically forbids consuming blood, there is no Biblical command pointedly forbidding the taking in of other human tissue. For this reason, each individual faced with making a decision on this matter should carefully and prayerfully weigh matters and then decide conscientiously what he or she could or could not do before God.
    • The Watchtower. WTBTS. 1989 March 15. pp. 31. 
  • Why have Jehovah's Witnesses disfellowshipped (excommunicated) for apostasy some who still profess belief in God, the Bible, and Jesus Christ? […] Approved association with Jehovah's Witnesses requires accepting the entire range of the true teachings of the Bible, including those Scriptural beliefs that are unique to Jehovah's Witnesses. What do such beliefs include? That the great issue before humankind is the rightfulness of Jehovah's sovereignty, which is why he has allowed wickedness so long. (Ezekiel 25:17) That Jesus Christ had a prehuman existence and is subordinate to his heavenly Father. (John 14:28) That there is a "faithful and discreet slave" upon earth today 'entrusted with all of Jesus' earthly interests,' which slave is associated with the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses. (Matthew 24:45-47) That 1914 marked the end of the Gentile Times and the establishment of the Kingdom of God in the heavens, as well as the time for Christ's foretold presence. (Luke 21:7-24; Revelation 11:15-12:10) That only 144,000 Christians will receive the heavenly reward. (Revelation 14:1, 3) That Armageddon, referring to the battle of the great day of God the Almighty, is near. (Revelation 16:14, 16; 19:11-21) That it will be followed by Christ's Millennial Reign, which will restore an earth-wide paradise. That the first to enjoy it will be the present "great crowd" of Jesus' "other sheep."-John 10:16; Revelation 7:9-17; 21:3, 4.
    • Q&A from The Watchtower. WTBTS. 1986 April. pp. 30-31. 
  • When the dinosaurs had fulfilled their purpose, God ended their life. But the Bible is silent on how he did that or when. We can be sure that dinosaurs were created by Jehovah for a purpose, even if we do not fully understand that purpose at this time. They were no mistake, no product of evolution. That they suddenly appear in the fossil record unconnected to any fossil ancestors, and also disappear without leaving connecting fossil links, is evidence against the view that such animals gradually evolved over millions of years of time. Thus, the fossil record does not support the evolution theory. Instead, it harmonizes with the Bible’s view of creative acts of God.
    • Awake!. WTBTS. February 8, 1990. 

Quotes about the WTBTS[edit]

... to Jehovah's Witnesses, there is a strange preoccupation with anything remotely related to demons. - Leonard & Marjorie Chretien
  • Big mother is alive and well and living in Brooklyn, New York! Her "children" live with the constant reminder of that fact. While the Christian is taught to have faith in Jesus Christ, Jehovah's Witnesses are told to put faith in an organization. An individual Witness has no direct personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. Their hope of eternal life depends not upon Jesus alone but upon a chain of salvation in which the organization is an essential link.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 109
  • A Witness who dies either naturally or at the battle of Armageddon without reconciliation with the organization goes immediately into eternal death, along with all mankind who do not come to God's true spirit-directed organization.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 109
  • Truth, as understood by Jehovah's Witnesses, changes continually as "new light shines forth." They are conditioned to expect and accept change as a normal consequence of advancing or progressive truth. Witnesses accept this phenomenon even thought the change may reverse a belief long held dear and may be very costly to the individual Witness.
    As with the Ministry of Truth in Orwell's society, the Watch Tower organization sanitizes its history and eliminates anything that discredits it. These adjustments by the "faithful slave" organization are made continually and are passed off as increasing "light" or a refinement of understanding.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 115
  • When a person is disfellowshipped from the organization, he is treated like a leper. He must be totally shunned by Witnesses. He cannot even be greeted on the street. Should a Witness decide to ignore this rule and associate withe the disfellowshipped friend or relative, he in turn will be disfellowshipped.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 124
  • Jesus never taught that God's kingdom was a government composed of Himself and 144,000 co-rulers from the earth. He never taught a two-stage coming with a protracted invisible presence culminating in a destructive cataclysm. He never taught that His heavenly bride of associates would engage in a cleansing and perfecting of manking. He did not teach that there would be two classes of believers- heavenly and earthly. He certainly never taught that God's kingdom rule would not have His personal visible oversight here on the planet but instead would be ruled by Witness elders or "princes" during the millennial reign. And He most certainly did not suggest that people would be separated into two classes of sheep and goats based on a parabolic faithful and discreet slave's spiritual food as offered and served by door-to-door consumer/publishers.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 143-44
  • A person who is initially exploring the Witnesses will not immediately learn what is really believed about Jesus. The use of familiar Christian terminology might lead some to believe that the Witnesses' Jesus is the same as the traditional Jesus. But that is not the case. The Jesus of the Watch Tower is actually Michael the archangel!
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 145
  • ... to Jehovah's Witnesses, there is a strange preoccupation with anything remotely related to demons. Persons who oppose the Watch Tower are referred to as "demonized". Should a Witness develop a nervous condition, the demons are immediately suspect. Demons continually come up in normal conversation among Witnesses. Their literature and discourses also make reference to demons on a continual basis. In the Watch Tower Publications Index, published in 1986, there are approximately 5000 references to the occult.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 159
  • The New American Standard Bible renders the verse "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." This verse is one of the strong statements in the Bible concerning the deity of Jesus Christ, and all legitimate, recognized translations have a similar rendering. However, the Watch Tower renders the last phrase "and the Word was a god." In other words, he is a lesser god - one of many. This effectively denigrates Christ's deity.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 169
  • The really important question is: Do Jehovah's Witnesses refuse blood on scriptural grounds or because the Watch Tower organization tells them to? We believe that if the organization published a different interpretation of the Bible verses which they use in support of their stand on blood, Jehovah's Witnesses would agree to take blood transfusions without any hesitation. Why do we say this? Because as soon as the Watch Tower leadership reversed its teaching on vaccination, organ transplants, and blood serums and fractions, thousands of Witnesses abandoned their conscientious refusal. They were really following the changeable Watch Tower organization's instructions rather than the Scriptures, which never change.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 189
  • If blood is essentially an organ transplant, and organ transplants are now permissible for Jehovah's Witnesses, does it follow that perhaps the Governing Body will eventually change their rules on blood transfusion? Unfortunately, we feel they will not. They have dug themselves into a deep hole with this teaching. The Watch Tower leadership will never directly say that taking blood is up to the individual's conscience, because of the serious reaction they would receive from members who have let a loved one die. Parents would realize that their children had died needlessly and might be tempted to storm the doors of Watchtower headquarters.
    • Leonard & Marjorie Chretien (1988), Witnesses of Jehovah: A Shocking Exposé of What Jehovah's Witnesses Really Believe, Harvest House Publishers, p. 190
  • In many ways the Witnesses have become ossified. For many decades now they have pursued the same missionary techniques with little adjustment for either societal or technological changes. More and more they have become hostile to new intellectual developments, the intellectual world, and to independent-minded intellectuals in their own ranks. And more significantly, their leadership has become a self-perpetuating caste which refuses to open itself to new and constructive criticism of any sort.
    • M. James Penton (2015), Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses, Third Edition, University of Toronto Press, pp. 8-9
  • At first congregational judicial committees acted largely against persons who disagreed openly with the society's teachings and policies. Such were those who "created divisions" or "promoted sects" as described by Romans 16:17, 18 and Titus 3:10, 11. However, this focus changed from 1952 forward for many years. What the society became primarily concerned with from that date until the late 1970s was "keeping the organization clean." Consequently, through congregational committees, it began to disfellowship fornicators, adulterers, drunkards, and persons guilty of other immoral practices. As time went by, it broadened the number of offences for which one could be cast out of the Witness community. For example, associating with a disfellowshipped person was, for a dedicated Jehovah's Witness, declared a ground for disfellowshipment as was the taking of a blood transfusion after 1961. Disfellowshipment became a terrible weapon. Witnesses in good standing were not to speak to disfellowshipped persons or even to greet them. In business dealings, they were to relate to them as little as possible. When they died, they were not to attend their funerals. To all intents and purposes they were regarded as eternally damned.
    • M. James Penton (2015), Apocalypse Delayed: The Story of Jehovah's Witnesses, Third Edition, University of Toronto Press, pp. 118-119

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has an article about:
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