Thursday, November 5, 2009

WT Baptism Questions

I was going through some old files, and I found something that I had actually forgot about. What I found was actually the Watchtower's OLD baptism questions.

When someone is about to be baptized as a Jehovah's Witness, they are asked two questions, which sort of end up becoming vows. When I was baptized, I had to anwser the questions, as did every other Witness.

Here were the questions that I anwsered:

(1) On the basis of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, have you repented of your sins and dedicated yourself to Jehovah to do his will?

(2) Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah's Witnesses in association with God's spirit-directed organization?

I still find it very interesting that there is no mention of Matthew 28:19-20. Not even an attempt to deal with the command that our Lord gives us to baptize in "the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit". Instead, Witnesses today are baptized into the "spirit directed organiztion". The authority of the Triune God is not what is the basis for their baptism, it's the authority of the Organization. A witness has to accept that the Watchtower Society is the "Faithul and discreete slave", or in plain language, God's mouthpiece and sole spokesman on Earth today.

I find it very interesting that these questions were not the ones always asked. Many older Witnesses could tell you that, but I doubt they've ever thought through the changes.

Here are the old questions:

(1) Have you repented of your sins and turned around, recognizing yourself before Jehovah God as a condemned sinner who needs salvation, and have you acknowledged to him that this salvation proceeds from him, the Father, through his Son Jesus Christ?

(2) On the basis of this faith in God and in his provision for salvation, have you dedicated yourself unreservedly to God to do his will henceforth as he reveals it to you through Jesus Christ and through the Bible under the enlightening power of the holy spirit?

Wow. Those almost sound BIBLICAL! No wonder why the Soceity changed them. They can't have something actually BIBLICAL now can they?

Do you know why I think that they changed the questions? Notice the last part of the second question, "to do his will henceforth as he reveals it to you through Jesus Christ and through the Bible under the enlightening power of the holy spirit". What is the source of the knowledge of God's will? Jesus Christ, the Bible, and the Holy Spirit. Notice the part the individual has to play, "as he reveals to you", that might actually call for some discernment, and even a bit of thinking for yourself. Ultimately this puts Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Bible over the Organization. This places the Witness as a judge of everything the WT says. No wonder why they changed it. Now the authority is "God's spirit-directed organization". They are now the dispensers of God's will. What arrogance to think that any human instituton could replace our Lord, his Spirit, and his Word.

What about those who vowed the old questions at their baptism? Are those vows now invalid? If they were to insist that the Society actually start following what the Bible really teaches, (excuse the pun), should they not be held innocent, as they would just be fulfilling their baptismal vows.

Just another example of a change made by the Watchtower to keep their authority over their members, and depart even farther form the Biblical model.



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