(Investigator 149, 2012
believe they are led by a prophet appointed by Jehovah i.e. God in 1919
as his "mouthpiece" on Earth.
prophet is a
composite or collective prophet composed of a subsection of JWs known
as "the remnant of the 144,000".
144) by one Brenton Hepburn who defends JWs on a website called "All
Experts" requested a "right of reply" to the Investigator
wrote "a lot of
what I read certainly was not the truth but half truths… I would
especially like to address the so called prophecies because I will show
NO Prophecies (in the Biblical sense) were uttered."
was invited to
write but hasn't — therefore the following is presented.
Shall Know That I Am Jehovah"—How? (1971) was authored by Frederick
W. Franz (1893-1992) who was ranked second in the JW Governing Body and
was the main theologian and ideologue.
studied the "Know Jehovah" book in their "book study" meetings.
They gathered weekly in small groups, mostly in private homes, and
studied the book paragraph by paragraph.
gave the latest JW interpretation of the Old Testament book of Ezekiel.
Ezekiel was a prophet around 600 BC who foretold the desolation of
Judah and its capital Jerusalem.
teaches that Ezekiel has a second, i.e. 20th century, fulfillment in
which Judah and its capital Jerusalem correspond to Christendom i.e.
all Christian denominations (p. 127), and the prophet Ezekiel
corresponds to the JW "remnant" of the 144,000.
144,000 go to heaven. These were chosen by God throughout the centuries
with a final "remnant" chosen from 1870 to 1935, all being JWs.]
2 of "Know
Jehovah" is titled "Commissioned To Speak In The Divine Name". It
quotes Ezekiel 2:3-5 where Ezekiel is appointed as a prophet
"commissioned to speak in the divine name". (p. 56)
and 58 introduce
the modern-day Ezekiel:
our twentieth century, the prophet Ezekiel well pictures the anointed
remnant of Jehovah's Christian witnesses since the year 1919 C.E… (p.
Who is Ezekiel's present day counterpart, whose message and conduct
correspond with that of that ancient prophet of Jehovah? Of whom today
was he a "sign" or "portent"? Not of some individual man, but of a
group of people. Being made up of a unified company of persons, the
modern Ezekiel is a composite personage, made up of many members… (p.
Ezekiel was "...a
true inspired prophet of Jehovah." (p. 277) Since the
JW prophet preaches Ezekiel's modern fulfilment as his counterpart we
expect his predictions to be equally "inspired". Indeed we're told that
the prophecy "will not fail":
- Serves "as
mouthpiece and active agent of Jehovah" (p. 59)
- Has "an
and a commission from the Most High God" (p. 66)
1919 to preach "to Christendom" (p. 78)
type will not fail of fulfillment upon its modern, antitypical
counterpart. Christendom will be uprooted from where she has been
deeply entrenched for sixteen centuries. Her realm will be desolated,
without her hypocritically Christian clergymen and church institutions.
magazine, on the same topic of modern-day "Ezekiel", states the
prophecy won't fail because it's from God Almighty: "And since no word
or work of Jehovah can fail, for he is God Almighty, the nations will
see the fulfillment of what these witnesses say as directed from
heaven." (1972, April 1, p. 200)
double-fulfillment interpretation with abundant criticism, almost
invective, of "Christendom". For example:
Labels such as "false",
"hypocritical", "Babylonish", "apostate", "harlot", "rebellious" and
"unfaithful" in "Know Jehovah" number several hundred. Also only
JWs are Christian, these being "Jehovah's Christian witnesses",
"Christian witnesses of Jehovah" and "true Christianity" — about 55
reminders. Other denominations are "so-called Christians".
of spiritual fornicators" (p. 122)
of false, hypocritical religion" (122)
religious system is getting nothing but its just deserts and deserves no
- "The end
Jehovah has decreed upon her is about to come upon her, and she may expect
from Him." (125)
Him her religious things are." (125)
religionists who falsely claim to make up God's spiritual; sanctuary."
religionists who ignore Jehovah" (275)
With such intensive indoctrination many JWs must have finished the
weekly "study" fuming with self-righteous hatred of other religions.
With JW religion blameless and other religions entirely bad we'd expect
JW prophecies to be completely accurate:
OF JEHOVAH" in "TWENTIETH CENTURY" or "FALSE PROPHET"
within our twentieth century, the "battle in the day of Jehovah" will
against the modern antitype of Jerusalem, Christendom. (Know Jehovah,
1971, p. 216)
draws attention to the "twentieth century" 25 times including some
almost as clear as p. 216 these being pages 33-34; 113; 141; 255.
the "Day of
Jehovah"? This phrase is common in JW writings. The "Watchtower Library
2007" (a CD of recent JW publications) lists over 1400 occurrences.
article Who Will
Survive the Day of Jehovah? (The Watchtower 1995, September 15)
states that this "Day" is:
To JWs the "Day
Jehovah" is Armageddon, when the entire world's population except JWs
is violently exterminated.
- "When God
his enemies and saves his people"
destruction about to befall proud, unrepentant sinners"
- "an end to
entire wicked system of things"
- "when every
this system is dissolved by the fire of God's anger".
noted above, says that the prediction will come true. The book also
implies that if it doesn't come true then the "Ezekiel class" will be a
thrilling moment it will be when, during the coming "great tribulation"
on this present system of things, the authentic news comes from all
around the earth that the antitypical Jerusalem, Christendom, has
fallen at the hands of Jehovah's executional forces! This will be a
vindication of the modern-day Ezekiel class, to authenticate that they
have not been a false prophet… (p. 286)
"twentieth century", and this prediction proving false, the "modern-day
Ezekiel class" by its own criterion is a "false prophet".
the 1960s and early 1970s pinpointed Armageddon for the mid 1970s. (See
Investigator #51) Therefore suggestive statements as follows were
fifty-four years of the period called the "last days" have already gone
by is highly significant. It means that only a few years, at most,
remain before the corrupt system of things dominating the earth is
destroyed by God. (Awake! 1968, October 8, p. 13)
previous detailed JW
interpretation of Ezekiel was published in three volumes titled Vindication
I (1931), Vindication II (1932), Vindication III
doctrine of a
"composite prophet" composed of thousands of individuals was unclear
back then. But Vindication does state, "Ezekiel
foreshadowed…the remnant now on the earth." (Volume III p. 131), and
"The entire remnant collectively is designated "the watchman"." (Volume
II, p. 207)
Jehovah" also set a time limit, this being "millions now living
will never die" (Volume III, p. 192) and "It seems certain that there
are millions now living that will never die." (p. 331)
Since only JWs will survive Armageddon and very few JWs from 1932 are
still alive — certainly not "millions" — that prediction too has failed.
volumes the JWs — then known as "Russellites" and "Millennial Dawn" —
believed that God's prophet was one man, Charles Taze Russell
(1852-1916). For example:
lived among us in these last days a Prophet of the Lord; and although
now he has passed from human sight, his works remain an enduring
witness to his wisdom and his faithfulness! (The Watch Tower 1917, June
1, page 6091)
a sample of that
surprised then, when in subsequent chapters we present proofs that the
setting up of the Kingdom of God is already begun, that it is due to
begin the exercise of power in A.D. 1878, and that the ‘battle of the
great day of God Almighty' (Rev. 16:14) which will end in A.D. 1915,
with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already
commenced. (Studies in the Scriptures, Volume II, 1889, p. 101)
with the end of
A.D. 1914, what God calls Babylon, and which men call Christendom, will
have passed away, as already shown from prophecy. (Studies in the
Scriptures, Volume III, 1891, p. 153)
earliest JW attempt
to interpret Ezekiel was in The Finished Mystery (1917). This
book was the "posthumous publication of Pastor Russell" (Preface p. 5)
and "of the Lord—prepared under his guidance". (p. 126)
Christendom's destruction in 1918 and the rest of the world after that:
year, 1917-1918, the vast and complicated system of sectarianism
reaches its zenith of power, only to be suddenly dashed into oblivion.
Mystery's interpretation of Ezekiel 2:3-5 where Ezekiel becomes a
prophet to Jerusalem is not a "collective remnant" but one man:
three days in which
Pharoah's host pursued the Israelites into the wilderness represented
the three years from 1917 to 1920 at which time all of Pharoah's
messengers will be swallowed up in the sea of anarchy. (p. 258)
was to be accomplished in Spiritual Israel, Christendom, after the
Lord's Second Advent in 1874. The man raised up…was Pastor Russell."
voice of many
waters…spoke Pastor Russell; and ere long "they shall know that there
hath been a Prophet [preacher] among them." (p. 378)
Jehovah" has many comments about "Christendom" comparable to
present themselves as
the only genuine Christians, followers of Jehovah's prophet who alone
understands the Bible. Yet all their prophetic dates have failed and
numerous doctrines been revised, and it shocks their minds when pastors
of "Christendom" expose it all.
[Investigator 85 presented a
calculation that The Finished Mystery
— just one book and not counting others — has about 1300
interpretations that JWs later changed!]
than feel humility
the JW leaders express a terrible rage. They've even called theologians
"dumb dogs" and ministers "swine class".
theology, as shown
above, teaches that the "remnant" is a "composite prophet". This
doctrine, however, is theoretical; it is not true in practice.
practice most official
JW books until the 1970s were written by one man without consulting the
thousands who constitute "the remnant".
Until 1916 the one man was Russell. Until 1942 the one man was Joseph F
Rutherford the second president of their Watchtower Society. After that
the main writer was Frederick Franz.
A "governing body" was instituted in 1944 and for some books such as
the New World Translation of the Bible several of these worked
together. But Frederick Franz was the sole exponent of prophecy; any JW
who challenged his theology was excommunicated.
Hepburn claims "NO
Prophecies (in the Biblical sense) were uttered."
Hepburn has in
mind Watchtower articles that state JWs are neither "inspired"
nor "infallible" whereas the Bible's prophets were "inspired". Being
non-inspired, however, would not relieve anyone who makes false
predictions of responsibility. All false prophets mentioned in the
Bible were non-inspired but accountable!
interpreting the Bible — God interprets and "reveals it":
uses the servant class to publish the interpretation after the Supreme
Court [i.e. Jehovah] by Christ Jesus reveals it. (Watchtower 1943 pages
infallibility since God is said to be infallible.
fast as the superior
authorities Jehovah and Jesus Christ reveal the interpretations through
their provided channel that fast do God's people publish them…
(Watchtower 1952, page 253)
prophet is, we
learned above, "commissioned to speak in the divine name" and "no word
or work of Jehovah can fail". He corresponds to Ezekiel, predicted
Armageddon "within our twentieth century", and implied that if this
failed he would be a "false prophet" — which he therefore is.
correspond to Ezekiel.
Their prophet from the 1870s was Charles Taze Russell whose predictions
Afterwards the "remnant of the 144,000" became a "composite prophet"
claiming to dispense Jehovah's "interpretations" and "speak in the
divine name" but whose predictions were false.
The Watchtower does not permit the
"right of reply" but this website does because it seeks the truth: