[Watchtower study for the week of August 4, 2014 – w14 6/15 p. 12]
This is one of those articles we look forward to because it gives us the opportunity to praise our grand creator in the big congregation. (Ps 35:18) (Feel free to share your thoughts on Jehovah’s love using the comments section.)
Unfortunately, the Organization cannot seem to leave it at that. The final paragraphs contain the usual application that call for us to show love by obeying and supporting the Organization.
How Can We Prove that We Love God?
Par. 17 – “Regularly attend Christian meetings, assemblies, and conventions.” There is no need to add the qualifier “JW” in front of “Christian meetings…” because we would simply not consider the Christian meetings, assemblies, and conventions of other Christian denominations. They would not qualify because they are not part of true Christianity as we are, because they teach falsehoods. Ah, but therein lies the rub for an increasing number of us. As the subheading asks, we are wondering if we can truly prove we love God if we attend JW gatherings where falsehoods are taught. These two parts from the Friday sessions of this year’s convention are but one case in point. (See “Sacred Secrets of the Kingdom Progressively Revealed” and “How Babylon the Great Has ‘Shut Up the Kingdom’”)
Par. 19 – “Show that you appreciate the congregation elders.” This is a valid way in which we can show appreciation for God’s loving provisions. However, we are not talking about true, loving shepherds here. We are talking about those who have been officially appointed by the branch office; and from September onward, by the Circuit Overseer. Some of these men are truly caring individuals who work tirelessly for others. However, it would be disingenuous to suggest that such ones make up a majority inside the congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Based on firsthand experience gained over a lifetime, it is safer to say that those who are truly loving shepherds worthy of our appreciation are in the minority. (This goes for the clergy of pretty much any Christian denomination you’d care to mention, by the way.)
Par. 20 – “…because you love God, you will make an effort to talk to others about him and to comment at the meetings.” Again, true. However, there are far more eloquent ways to prove our love for God then commenting at meetings. (James 1:27; Mt. 15:9; Joh 4:21-24) No mention of these is made in the article, yet commenting at the meetings merits special attention. It seems our priorities are skewed.