Here is a definition of a cult: Questioning, doubting and dissent are discouraged or punished. Members are afraid to even think any negative thoughts about its leader. The members display excessively zealous and unquestioning commitment to its leader. The leadership dictates how they should feel, think and act. The leadership claims special status for itself. The leadership has a polarized us-versus them mentality, which can cause conflict with the wider society. The leadership is preoccupied with bringing in new members; and expects the members to devote inordinate amounts of time in this activity. Members believe there can be no life outside of the context of the organization. Members are afraid to be called apostates if they leave the cult, since that label means total isolation and life as reprobates. Members are routinely isolated from their families. Here is a definition of a true Christian: He or she is not afraid to ask searching questions, since he or she knows that Jesus Christ allowed that when he walked this earth (Judas, is an example). He or she is not afraid to think negative thoughts, if it is merited. He or she follows leadership ONLY if it is in harmony with Jesus' teachings. He or she is free to feel, think and act in accordance with conscience. He or she is free to leave the congregation, free of guilt, if he or she believes the teaching is not in harmony with the Holy Scriptures, and that he or she is heading in the wrong direction. He or she should not allow a church or any entity to isolate him or her from family and friends. This should be done at your discretion. Here is what the "Faithful and Discreet Slave Class" demands: All the above about cult. Total allegiance. Condemnation of Christendom---all true Christians. Protection against criticism; or they will claim "persecution"! They believe that they are ALWAYS right even if they tell a lie. In addition, they claim to be God's mouthpiece. But this MUST be a lie since the predictions they made in His name ('World' ending in 1914, then 1925, then, 1975,) did not happen. Not to mention "The Great Disappointments" of the 1840s and 1940s. They do not believe in charity---supporting other needy churches, inter alia
, or feeding homeless and poor people through programs run by the various charitable organizations. They do not believe (like true Christians do) in the Trinity. They do not believe in building hospitals with the millions of members hard-earned money. They do not believe in building schools and universities. They do not believe in education. They destroy families. Their members face official condemnation if they even give the impression that they are even thinking about asking "apostate" questions. (Based on this, Thomas, who they claim as a brother, must have been asking a False Jesus questions!) They practice dirigisme
---controlling members in social and economic matters. They leave some ex-members with no choice but to commit suicide---since they are ashamed to face their families and friends; and have found themselves between the "Devil organization and the deep blue sea"! Their claim to be God's plenipotentiary must be false, since God does not endorse cults. Their claim that ONLY Jehovah Witnesses have the key to salvation, MUST be false, since ONLY Jesus Christ has that sine que non.
"Judge" Rutherford's claim of heavenly inspiration, when in fact he espoused the nomenclature "Jehovah's Witnesses" by way of sortes
, must be presumptuous since there is no proof. Furthermore, there is nowhere in the Scriptures that God says He's going to give a modern-day group of people, or a cult, special access to the fons et origio
of Bible truths so they can possess His thoughts. Rutherford's claim must be seen as a ipse dixit,
consistent with the way Jehovah Witnesses practice their cultism. Additionally, Jesus never told Peter that "You're Peter, and on this rock-mass, I will build my organization (or society)." Jesus used the word, ekklesia
, which means a church or synagogue. I had been a Jehovah's Witness for over 20 years, and what I've learned is that the whole allegiance rhetoric is a kind of control mechanism employed by the Slaves to corral congregants and lock them into a microcosm of servitude, and their being silenced by the threat of excommunication is a form of torture. I think I speak for many elders and pioneers and publishers. I think that if the honest elders, who know that the J. W. organization is a cult, leave, the organization would be decimated. And I think that this is what the Slaves are afraid of why they turn a blind eye to the sexual abuse and other atrocities that are being committed by some elders. (23,720, and counting).