Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Overview of Jehovah's Witnesses' Awake! (No. 5, 2016)

Recently I got my hands on the Jehovah's Witnesses' recruitment magazine, Awake! Namely number five of 2016.

The Jehovah's Witnesses are often viewed as a cult due to various authoritarian practices among themselves such as shunning ex-members and refusing blood transfusions even if it causes death.

It is well known that HWA was heavily influenced by the Jehovah's Witnesses as he devised what became known as Armstrongism. Both the Watchtower Society and Armstrongism are offshoots of the Millerite Adventists of the 1830s-1840s.

Let's take a look.

The Watchtower Society was started up by white Americans in 1879 under the leadership of Charles Taze Russell, so naturally they portray Jesus as a white man. The main leaders of this organization such as Russell, Rutherford, Knorr and Franz, were mainly white. Even today the main leadership of this organization in Brooklyn, New York is still predominantly white.

On the contents page it is stated that this recruitment magazine has 57,761,000 issues in circulation in 106 languages.

There is an article stating that Jesus existed which every other church teaches as well (pp. 3-6).

While discussing this topic it slurs the Jewish rabbis who authored the Talmud as "Jesus' enemies".
This collection of Jewish rabbinic writings [the Talmud], dating from the third to the sixth centuries C.E., shows that even Jesus' enemies affirmed his existence. (p. 5.)
It also states that the following will happen after the Millennium comes.
Wickedness, including greed and corruption, will be gone forever, along with ungodly people. (p. 6.)
What a way for one to say that he or she does not want to hang out with people who religiously disagree

Watching the world talks about checking on e-mails less; ending over fishing in the Caribbean; and widespread violence in Brazil (p. 7).

There is a parenting article discussing how to teach sex to your children (pp. 8-9).

Then it discusses carbon (pp. 10-11).

Then it encourages people to show gratitude (pp. 12-13).

Then it features a profile on Aristotle. The topic is exploited to denigrate the Catholic Church, Luther and Calvin. (pp. 14-15).
Aristotle's notion that a stationary earth lies at the center of the universe became Catholic dogma. The teaching was also adopted by Protestant leaders, such as Calvin and Luther, who said it was biblical. (p. 15.)
The Watchtower Society claims they are the one, true church and historical facts such as the widespread misconception that the Earth was at the center of the Universe is used to reinforce the idea that one must not join any other church aside from the Watchtower Society.

And on the back cover there is an article boasting of how videos from their website is being used in classrooms in South Korea.

And so the Watchtower Cult has produced another issue to try and get more people to join them and to encourage those who are already members to remain in it.


  1. Currently, my only exposure to the JWs is at the public library. They have displays of their literature and their folding chairs, and tend to use the library as an open air forum. Frankly it annoys me to see them there, because even though they will only speak if you speak to them first, I still know that they are another one of the Miller cults.

    I have known some JWs throughout the past, and when they are off the clock (not witnessing), some of them come off as being normal, regular people. One JW lady and her husband were into Harleys, and one time at the drag races, they recognized me and called out to me, and we sat and enjoyed the races together with no religious conversation whatsoever. I had had many conversations with that lady at the store she worked at, and witnessing never entered into it.

    It is a bad surprise though, if you ever happen to
    be making cold sales calls, and quite by accident your target is a Witness. It ends up becoming at least 1/2 hour detour!


  2. They will probably never tell its readers about Beth-Sarim, the house of the Princes, built in San Diego and where Judge Rutherford (Watchtower's second leader) lived for years. It was built for Abraham, Joseph and David when they returned. Why in San Diego, rather than in Brooklyn, the Watchtower HQ. Some say that the church wanted him out of the way. Nor will they remind readers that they condemned the use of aluminum cookware, pasteurization of milk, denied the germ theory of disease and promoted the grape cure.

  3. It turns out there's a later issue of Awake now, but in the issue referenced above, for proving Jesus existed, they quote people who basically were born after Jesus would have been executed, so it was all second hand stuff and not necessarily to be trusted (just as many books from Ivy League schools may not have the credibility one might expect).

    And as for the article on carbon: There's only one reason Armstrongists would be interested -- it is one of the chief components of alcohol.

    My Aunt and cousin were JWs. From what I remember, they are much more weird than the normal religious person. You can't fault them though for not having church buildings, unlike Armstrongists.

  4. Thanks Byker Bob for sharing your anecdote here.

    Thanks Steve D for mentioning Beth-Sarim. I heard about that. It is quite true that the Watchtower Society banned vaccines from around 1921 until 1952. It was during this period that HWA got his anti-medicine superstition from their influence.

    Thanks Black Ops Mikey for sharing your thoughts on this matter and sharing your anecdote regarding your relatives.

    Your comments are all greatly appreciated here.