Saturday, April 30, 2011

Can I Get A Witness?

Day 302 in my "Year In My Life Through Pictures" blog series

I had the opportunity to talk to a couple of Jehovah's Witnesses today in my front yard. It was an experience that I will definitely use to grow in my understanding of scriptures. These two guys were semi-well versed in the JW apologetics department, but still I gave them the gospel and what a true follower of Christ is.

It is amazing how their religion takes scripture and twists it, even changes words and adds words to make them fit into their belief structure. Although they (the Jehovah's Witnesses) are similar to the Mormon religion, they do have some very strong distinctiveness. I have been in contact with a Mormon for about 2 years now and I think I know a lot of their beliefs, but the JWs today did catch me off guard with a few questions and thought processes. I actually thought at some points they were trying to confuse me to get my footing off so they could pour their false doctrines down my throat. I was in prayer the whole 2 hour conversation as king for God to direct me through the conversation. And He did.

One point they were trying to hound into me was there was no hell. I couldn't help but think of Rob Bell, even though the JWs and Bell have different thoughts to dissuade people from believing. They kept speaking of destruction in the sense of obliteration, the second death as just being totally destroyed. We did go to the story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16 and I think that got them thinking a little bit harder. They did have an "answer", albeit a flimsy one that they didn't seem to confident in. The just of it was that "Abraham's Bosom" was just an analogy to the Kingdom, so speaking of eternal torment was also just an analogy. We did come back to this story a time or two through the conversation and they kept saying they would have to "study" it more, which I took as "take back to someone higher up that can tell me how to refute this".

They left after standing outside for 2 hours, sometimes with small rain showers coming down, so they were at least dedicated to the conversation and I was dedicated to not asking them inside my home. I had my MacArthur Study Bible in hand as I wanted to show them the differences in their NWT and a different one that they are not allowed to read from. I did get the more outspoken one's phone # with the agreement I would call him to set up another meeting, with the caveat that I would give him a topic for discussion as well. The other young man was really the one that I sensed was questioning some things in his own head, he nodded some as I was refuting some of their claims and said on more than one occasion that he would "look into it".

I know God is able to pull any of these deceived people from this false religion, He pulled me from a false religion that I was perfectly content in believing as well. Deception is a wicked thing and those embroiled in it do not realize they are deceived, they simply follow along and believe everything that is pumped into them. God can change that though and that is why I am not fretting over the "I should have said ...." and relying on Him to work in these two young men as He sees fit. I do ask that you pray for Andrew and Nick that they will be exposed to some true theology in places other than my house. Pray that any seeds sown today may take root and sprout into fruit that God will use to break these guys from their bondage. I have the highest faith that God can do this, just as I know that He can save my children and the lost friends and family members I have, even the ones that profess Christ but do not know the True Christ.

1 comment:

tom sheepandgoats said...

We did come back to this story a time or two through the conversation and they kept saying they would have to "study" it more, which I took as "take back to someone higher up that can tell me how to refute this".

No, I don't think so. Nobody knows everything. Just as you don't, neither do they. There's no reason not to take their initial answer at face value.

From what I gather of Rob Bell, he does not deny hell's existance. He just maintains no one will end up there. As you say, JW's deny its existence. (as a place of torment) There are but three words generally translated as 'hell:' sheol, hades, and gehenna. Possibly your visitors made the point that they all mean something different than a place of everlasting torment.