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Jehovah’s Witnesses. What is it? - A millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with some of the principles borrowed from Christianity excluding.

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Presentation on theme: "Jehovah’s Witnesses. What is it? - A millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with some of the principles borrowed from Christianity excluding."— Presentation transcript:

1 Jehovah’s Witnesses

2 What is it? - A millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with some of the principles borrowed from Christianity excluding the Trinity.

3 Jehovah’s Witnesses History Jehovah’s Witnesses began from Charles Taze Russell’s teachings. Charles Taze Russell was born in 1852 in Allegheny, Pennsylvania. He was one of five children. His mother wanted him to become a missionary some day. In 1861, she died. The family continued to go the a Presbyterian church. Eventually Russell was discouraged with some of the teachings of the Presbyterian Church and he joined the Congregational Church. He was elected a fundraiser for the church, and then decided it was against God’s will to ask other Christians for money; he believed that God would give funds for what is needed.

4 Jehovah’s Witnesses History He also tried to convert as many people as he possibly could to his religion. After having a conversation with a childhood friend about contradicting Christian creeds and people, his faith was shaken and began to search out for the answers to if the Christian faith was empty and baseless. His pastor gave him books to read, but that lead him to an even more inconclusive thought. He began to look at other religions, then finally settling that Christianity must be true due to its historical events and accuracy.

5 Jehovah’s Witnesses History Russell along with his family and friends started a bible study. The bible study was very analytical and focused on determining the accuracy of the Bible. They tried to determine what part of the Bible was tradition and which are actually commanded. Independent bible study was a new idea and still condemned by the Catholic church during this time. He, his father, and sister decided that they have identified what it means to be a Christian and took a vow, and were all rebaptized.

6 Jehovah’s Witnesses History Russell read the Herald of the Morning magazine and found that others were doing analytical bible studies. He contacted the publisher Nelson H. Barbour. Both compared their studies and believed that Jesus would return in 1874. When the date passed, the men were discouraged and thought he may come in 1878; he sold his businesses with expectations of the rapture. Barbour recanted his faith after the rapture did not happen. They did not meet eye to eye on their views anymore so Russell and Barbour split. Nelson H. Barbour

7 Jehovah’s Witnesses History After Russell and Barbour relinquished ties, Russell started the newspaper Zion’s Watch Tower and Herald of Christ’s Presence in July 1879. He wanted to reach the globe about the false Christian teachings and which beliefs were really true.

8 Russell’s Relationship In 1879, Russell married Maria Frances Ackley. They were both fond of preaching the gospel and that is what their marriage was based on. It was not based on romantic ties, but the love of preaching the gospel. In the same year they separating, citing the differences about how the Zion Watch Tower magazine was to be run.

9 Jehovah’s Witnesses History In 1881, Russell founded “Zion’s Watch Tower Tract Society.” With Russell’s dream of being heard globally, he made this society to spread his message through tracts, papers, doctrinal treaties and Bibles. While his tracts were getting the message out, his Bible study attendance also grew to 200 local members. He also published Food for Thinking Christians, Tabernacle and its Teachings, and Tabernacle Shadows of the Better Sacrifices in the same year. He also published textbooks called The Divine Plan of the Ages. He published several more books and volumes.

10 Jehovah’s Witnesses History In 1903, newspapers decided to print some of Russell’s sermons and the print reached global proportions. He was also known for not holding collections, which made churches lose money. After his popularity was gaining momentum, many tried to slur his name, which made him even more famous. There are various rumors that went around such as him being a false prophet, a free mason, made money off his followers, and the immoral treatment and abuse of his wife.

11 Christ to return in 1914 Christ was to physically return to earth and set up his kingdom in 1914. When this date passed other dates where set for his return. Today Jehovah Witnesses say Christ returned invisibly and was crowned king in 1914. Jehovah’s Witnesses continued to believe that Christ would return physically during this generation, but since 80 plus years have passed, his return is now seen as symbolic.

12 Russell’s death In 1916, Russell died of diverticulitis. He was touring the U.S. in a train car and died there. His death was heard around the world. The devastating rumors that once plagued him soon died off as well. People fought over his estate and the fate of the Zion Watch Tower magazine.

13 Russell’s death The Society’s lawyer Joseph Rutherford took control, voided Russell’s last will and testament, fired board members dismissed some of Russell’s views. In 1928, 75% of the society left; the remaining small groups of bible studies were renamed by Rutherford as Jehovah’s Witnesses to distinguish them in 1931. The name was from Isaiah 43. Many Jehovah’s Witnesses views Russell as their founder, but it was really Rutherford who did. Rutherford died in 1942. Jehovah’s Witnesses are a prominent religion today. Joseph Rutherford

14 Is Jehovah God’s Name? In the Hebrew it is YHWH. Early Scholars made a mistake in translating the Hebrew name for God as “Jehovah”. Today scholars translate God’s name as Yahweh. The masoretes (7 th to 10 th centuries AD) added vowel points to the Hebrew so one would know how to read and pronounce the Hebrew words. When they came to God’s name it was so holy that no one was to speak his name. So the masoretes put the vowel points for “Lord” (Adoni), so that one would know to say the name “Lord” and not the holy name “Yahweh”. So if they want to be correct they should call themselves Yahweh Witnesses, because Jehovah is the wrong translation of the Hebrew YHWH.


16 Beliefs They believe the Bible was inspired by God and only use their own unique version that is not flawed. Other versions of the Bible are not true. They use the New World Translation. They believe sin was inherited by Adam and Eve, but do not focus on the consequence's of sin. They believe that God will have his kingdom on Earth and want to spread the gospel to save others. They believe to be saved that they must have faith, but also learn about Jehovah and obey Jehovah’s requirements to be worthy to reside in his presence. They do not believe in hell, but believe sinner’s souls will be destroyed. Followers will exist forever in heaven.

17 Beliefs Only 144,000 people will go to heaven, and the rest will remain on Earth in God’s paradise. They base the afterlife on the books, Daniel and Revelation. They believe Revelation started in 1914. They believe we are living in the last days. They consider themselves Christians, but do not believe that others are Christians. When people die, they just die and nothing lives on and God will resurrect them.

18 Beliefs about Christ They do not believe in the Trinity. They believe that there is only one God, and his name Is Jehovah. Jesus is not God, and he reports to God as the chief spokesman. He was brought to earth to lead a perfect example, teach the truth, and to free humanity from sins. He was raised from the dead as a spiritual body and then went to heaven. He did not die on a cross, but a stake. They believe cross was mistranslated from the Greek. He was made king in 1914.

19 Other Beliefs They do not allow blood transfusions. Followers are to refuse them even if it means death. The Bible requires them to abstain from blood and they can try other medical treatments to solve their problems. They must not eat blood. Smoking or other drugs for pleasure is forbidden. Safety of themselves and animals must be considered. Animals may not be killed for sport or mistreatment. They do not believe in abortion; a child is sacred. They are not allowed to celebrate any holidays or birthdays including Christmas. They must not pledge allegiance to any nation, no voting, or any other political practices. Limited higher education and contact with non-Jehovah’s Witnesses.

20 Other Beliefs They are not allowed to celebrate any holidays or birthdays including Christmas. The memorial of Christ’s death is celebrated, not any other religious holidays. They must not pledge allegiance to any nation, no voting, or any other political practices. They must do a certain amount of hours of door to door missionary work. Limited higher education. Limit the contact with non-Jehovah’s Witnesses. Shunning of former Jehovah’s Witnesses. Forbids literature of critical literature of Jehovah’s Witnesses and other beliefs being broadcast through the church. No premarital sex or homosexuality.

21 Other Beliefs False Prophetic Dates: 1874: Date for Christ’s “invisible presence,” changed to 1914 1914: End of the world 1915: Replaced 1914 for the end of the world 1918: End of the world, the destruction of churches 1925: End of the world with the return of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob 1929: “Beth Sarim” House of Princes built in San Diego, deeded to king David and other biblical prophets for their “soon” return upon the earth 1940’s: End of the World would come with the “soon” battle of Armageddon 1975: 6,000-years of human history, the end of the world would come within “months, not years.” 1994: 80-year Generation of 1914 should bring the end of the world, 1995 redefined the word “generation” to be symbolic of general readiness for the end. Source:

22 Today Over 6 million followers in 230 different lands. Their Bible is translated into 429 different languages. There are over 107,000 congregations world wide. Their main website is the Their main location is in Brooklyn, New York. They spend 1.2 billion hours a year trying to convert people.

23 Quiz 1.Who is considered by most Jehovah’s Witnesses to be the founder? a.Charles Daze b.Charles Taze Russell- c.Charles Haze Russell d.Charles Darwin

24 Quiz 2. What was the first denomination of the founder of Jehovah’s Witnesses? a. Catholic b. Baptist c. Congregational d. Presbyterian-

25 Quiz 3. Russell eventually did not believe in Christians doing fundraising for the church. a.True- b.False

26 Quiz 4. It was not rare to have an analytical Bible study when Russell was younger. a.True b.False-

27 Quiz 5. What publisher did Russell contact to hold a Bible study together then later split from? a.Neil Stember b. Ethan Embers c. Nelson H. Barbour- d. Joseph Rutherford

28 Quiz 6. Russell founded the Herald of the Morning magazine. a.True b.False -

29 Quiz 7. Russell married Maria Frances Ackley. a.True- b.False

30 Quiz Fill in the blank 8. Russell founded the _____ _____ ______ ______ Society “Zion’s Watch Tower Tract Society

31 Quiz 9.What book did Russell not publish? A.Food for Thinking Christians B.Food for Christian Thought- C. Tabernacle and its Teachings D. Tabernacle Shadows of the Better Sacrifices

32 Quiz 10. When did Russell die? A.1915 B.1916- C. 1934 D. 1924

33 Quiz 11. In 1928, how many people left the Bible study when Rutherford took control? A.25% B.35% C. 50% D. 75%-

34 Quiz 12. What is the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ version of the Bible? A.New Living Translation B. New World Translation- C. King James D. New King James

35 Quiz 13. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in hell. A.True- B.False

36 Quiz 14. Jehovah’s Witnesses celebrate Christ’s birth. A.True- B.False

37 Quiz 15. Jehovah’s Witnesses celebrate Christmas, Passover, and birthdays. A.True B.False-

38 Quiz 16. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that God is A.Jehovah- B.Jesus C.The Holy Spirit D.All of the Above

39 Quiz 17. How many people are going to heaven according to Jehovah’s Witnesses? A.145,000 B.150,000 C.144,000- D.154,000

40 Quiz 18. Jehovah’s Witnesses go to heaven based on works. A.True B.False-

41 Quiz 19. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in blood transfusions. A.True- B.False

42 Quiz 20. Approximately how many followers does the Jehovah’s Witnesses have? A.5 million B.6 million- C.7 million D.8 million

43 Resources russell-mason.html

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