Childhood DreamEDITORS NOTE: The opinions expressed in the Friday Column do not necessarily reflect all viewpoints, but are intended to provoke thought and discussion among Jehovah’s Witnesses as well as those who have left the religion. Friday Column writers come from a wide spectrum of world views.

This is the second of three Friday Column articles from JW Survey member P.B. on the subject of the Paradise Earth doctrine and its relationship to the Jehovah’s Witnesses. You can read the first here:

As a child, I spent a lot of time with my head in the clouds.

One of my favourite activities was imagining alternatives to boring modern cities- I liked to conjure up cities floating between the clouds, high-walled castles with dainty bridges and piranhas in the large circular moat. And of course there was the underwater bubble city. I think everyone loved to think about the underwater bubble city.

As I am propelled (half kicking, half screaming) further into the plateau of adulthood, I find myself revisiting these childhood concepts and looking at them with a more scientifically-conscious perspective. This is not an enjoyable activity.

Why?

Because there tend to be good reasons why we don’t do cool things like make our cities float. It turns out that cities are rather heavy. There is no good option for sustainably generating that sort of lift. And this is a comparatively small problem- if you’re using rockets to keep your city up, how do you fuel them? Fuel adds weight to the city that you’re desperately trying to stop from falling out of the sky, not to mention polluting our atmosphere at an alarming rate.

Ok, so we scrap the floating city. What about the castle? Stone walls and poor insulation would make heating a bit of a chore, feeding piranhas is a supply nightmare and high walls are functionally useless given the absence of warring kingdoms. But surely the underwater bubble city! That must work! Well, turns out the ocean is heavy too. The about 12 kilometers of air above your head only weights about as much as a 10 meter tall column of water. This means that living underwater in a big, transparent dome (whose air supply needs constantly to be changed) is not looking good either.

Don’t get me wrong- I don’t mean to attack childhood imagination. To me, it was one of the best things about growing up. I only mean to make the point that sometimes nice ideas do not stack up based purely on logistical and commonsense reasons. This is what I think of the Paradise doctrine; a nice idea that is simply incongruous with reality. And unfortunately, the Paradise is filled with examples of important details glossed over. When considered in context, what is known of it seems more like the idle imagining of the later Bible writers as opposed to the divine plan of Jehovah God, as we shall see.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Paradise Earth

20ebc54ee9cf6d65204375ea24460f7fTaking descriptions of Paradise straight from jw.org, we find:

Isaiah 65:21-23“The work of their own hands my chosen ones will use to the full. They will not toil for nothing, nor will they bring to birth for disturbance.”

John 5:28, 29“The hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear [Jesus’] voice and come out.”

Revelation 21:4“[God] will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.”

Most of the descriptions of Paradise fall into this or a very similar category. No war, poverty, disease or death. Humans will have peace, prosperity and general perfection to play with for the rest of eternity. And how, according to jw.org, is this to be accomplished? “In the new world, God’s sovereignty will be fully upheld. What a refreshing contrast that will be to the self-rule promoted in this world under Satan’s domination! Independence and an unreasonable insistence on personal preference may be highly regarded by some, but what has been the result? Failure to accept God’s direction has led to suffering, misery, even tragedy.”

The rulership of Jesus and the 144,000 anointed is supposedly the magical solution to all the problems facing humanity, but this is practically all that is said on the matter. Because human weakness and sin is blamed for all the evil in the world, perhaps it is not surprising that the Bible contains no practical plans for how Paradise Earth is supposed to be organised- mere humans won’t be organising that! We saw what a mess they made of it when they were in charge! However, it does leave many important questions unanswered.

Paradise – How does it work?

armageddon3Let’s imagine for the sake of argument that it’s the day after Armageddon. We made it! The sun is shining on a bright new day and it’s only faithful Witnesses left on Earth! Last night was probably pretty harrowing, though! Fireballs raining down from the sky killing literally all but 0.11% of the Earth’s population!

Celebrations all around!

There are now about eight million Jehovah’s Witnesses scattered about the Earth. Most are going to be in major cities. How do we feed all of them? Very few of them would grow their own food. I suppose they could go to the supermarket- that food is just going to spoil anyway. The roads are probably a bit blocked off with the debris from the firestorm, but I’m sure they can drive around that. Without restocking, the supermarket food will probably last a few weeks at the most. Not to worry! Jehovah fed all of the Israelites in the desert with manna. Of course he can feed his people now. Miracle counter: 1

With no worldly people left to run coal-fired and nuclear power plants, the flow of electricity stops in a couple of hours. That spells the end of landline and cell phones. With the staggering size of the Earth and no means of communication other than yelling, it would be a miracle if two Witnesses were able to find each other in a reasonable amount of time. Organising the worldwide clean-up would be pretty difficult. Not to worry! I’m sure Jehovah can help us figure out how to meet up with each other! Miracle counter: 2

The bodies of the dead will begin to smell and attract flies within a few hours. Not to mention the roughly one billion livestock, one billion pigs and twenty billion chickens that will quickly escape from their enclosures and discover they have no food. Not to worry! I’m sure Jehovah will help us take care of the bodies and provide food for all the animals too. Miracle counter: 3 and then 4. Our cars won’t get us very far- they’ll need fuel inside two weeks and the Shell and 7/11 stations will only last so long. Even if we could drive as far as we wanted, we still couldn’t cross the vast oceans separating Witnesses between continents. Not to worry! I’m sure Jehovah will give us a means to get around that! Miracle counter: 5

Cars wouldn’t do much good anyway- the electric pumps keeping subway tunnels dry don’t work with no electricity. The tunnels and many of the main boulevards have flooded. Not to worry! Miracle counter: 6. Many of the cities are on fire anyway. With all the firestorms and with there being no firefighters, the fires tended to roam free. Not to worry! None of Jehovah’s people could be harmed by anything like fire, explosions, collapsing structures or the uncontrolled meltdown of unmanned nuclear power stations. Miracle counter: 7

Several Years after Armageddon: Miraculously, some other witnesses from my local city have met up with me. There are about 400 of us. We set up near a river, but nothing much grows on the previously urban soil. Miraculously, we still have enough food and water and have no trouble from any of the animals that now roam the streets. Not to worry! Miracle counter: 8. Children are starting to be born now. These next fifteen years can’t go by fast enough- with only 400 of us, the work of disassembling the cities and building new structures with no tools or experience is pretty slow. Not to worry! I’m sure Jehovah will start resurrecting soon! Miracle counter: 9

Several Centuries since Armageddon: We’ve had to rebuild science from the bottom up but we’ve reconnected the continents! It’s starting to get a bit crowded in the cities now. It’s great that there’s no more sickness or death and that the faithful have been raised from the dead, but we might need a new planet soon. Not to worry! Miracle counter: ???

“All things are possible with God”

Puzzled male shrugging wearing lab coatI hope the previous story illustrated my point somewhat. It’s all well and good to talk about the love and power of your deity, but when you start proposing them as a solution to specific problems, it becomes pretty obvious that you are suggesting miracles.

But surely miracles are not outside the scope of what God can do? After all, Matthew 19:26 says “all things are possible with God.” But again the fundamental question arises: how?

It may be that “all things are possible with God”- that’s not really for me to say.

But I find it hard to believe that Jehovah would explain in meticulous detail His creation of human beings (Gen 1), His plans to free the Israelites from bondage in Egypt (Exodus) and the progression of future world governments from Nebuchadnezzar onwards but then curiously gloss over the specifics of how the paradise is to work. If there is no naturalistic explanation for how all this is to occur, then we can only conclude that Jehovah is acting miraculously.

That is, separate from or “immune” to scientific enquiry.

But this view understandably raises some issues. For example, take a look at the article  on jw.org discussing the reasons to believe in the existence of a God. What are some of these reasons? “The existence of an orderly universe containing life points to a Creator.” “Detailed prophecies in the Bible were written centuries ahead of time and came true exactly as predicted.” “Detailed prophecies in the Bible were written centuries ahead of time and came true exactly as predicted.”

In order to justify the existence of the paradise, we had to stipulate that God is beyond the realm of the naturalistic. Are we expected to believe that science and logic *can* be used to justify Jehovah God’s existence but that same science and logic are incapable of casting doubt on any aspect of His promises?  I, for one, am extremely suspicious of this double-standard.

 “Don’t Panic.”

61vKqiyxqSL._SL1500_Much like the floating cities, jetpacks and underwater bubble cities of my childhood imaginings, the Paradise is a pleasant idea. I’m occasionally pleased to imagine a flawless Eden-esque world with no more suffering, pain or death.

But eventually, the Paradise is just that- an abstract notion of how the world should be which shows poor agreement with science and basic common sense. And until Jehovah sees fit to communicate any more specific plans for the Earth through the Governing Body, I’d prefer to put the promise of Paradise to one side.

All is not lost, though. As much as it is a contrived platitude, the world is full of wonderful things right here and now that are not to be missed. So we should be sure not to miss them.

 

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Mark O'Donnell

Mark O'Donnell is a former Jehovah's Witness turned whistleblower after discovering the disturbing child abuse epidemic within the religion. His story, along with the revelation of a secret database of child molesters were featured in the March 2019 online issue of the Atlantic Magazine: https://www.theatlantic.com/family/archive/2019/03/the-secret-jehovahs-witness-database-of-child-molesters/584311/ O'Donnell continues to investigate allegations of child abuse within the Witness organization, and works with law enforcement, attorneys, and survivors of abuse, writing about his findings on jwsurvey.org and other outlets.

103 thoughts on “The Friday Column: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Paradise Earth

  • March 25, 2016 at 4:39 pm
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    Ho about the fact that new scrolls will be opened may that answer your questions

    • March 25, 2016 at 5:06 pm
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      Jan

      It would be better for you to say “I believe that new scrolls will be opened” than saying “the fact that new scrolls will be opened…”

      What you have to remember is that by definition of fact, there are no new scrolls. Belief in new scrolls is just that – belief. Not fact. The concept of new scrolls opening is your personal belief and does not necessarily represent the viewpoint of the Watchtower organization, or any other religion.

      I don’t know if you are one of Jehovah’s Witnesses or not, but if you are, you should know that their definition of “new scrolls” does not include explaining the answers to all of the questions posed by the author of our article.

      For example, the 2010 Watchtower, April 15th says the following:

      “How will Jehovah use his holy spirit in the coming new world? That spirit will be the force behind the new scrolls that will be opened at that time. (Rev. 20:12) What will these contain? Evidently, Jehovah’s detailed requirements for us during the thousand years. Do you look forward to examining the contents of those scrolls?”

      So – you are making a very bold assumption here that Jehovah will explain all these things using the “new scrolls” when in fact the Watchtower says nothing of this. You are drawing a conclusion based on your personal belief – a belief that God will reveal all of the things more clearly in the future, things for which there is no rational explanation for at this time.

      We certainly respect your right to believe whatever you wish, but our articles are designed to help you think about the world around us and separate fact from fiction. If you are willing to do this, please give science and logic equal time with religion and faith, and draw your conclusions accordingly

      JR

      • March 27, 2016 at 6:04 pm
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        When the watchtower says “Evidently” you can be sure that bull$l-lit is to follow.

    • March 26, 2016 at 12:15 am
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      Are you being serious or sarcastic, Jan? Sorry, but it’s unclear.

  • March 25, 2016 at 7:10 pm
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    Being a fan of Hitch-hiker’s guide to the Galaxy, I am qualified to comment! Keep in mind, please, the Watchtower might be edited by Vogons, so if you find their picture of the future a little unrealistic, remember: “They don’t think, they don’t imagine, most of them can’t even spell, they just run things. And if we don’t hitch a ride soon, you won’t need the guide to tell you just how unpleasant they can be. They already destroyed a planet today, and that always makes them a little… eeee! ”

    While I can appreciate the human, humorous, and even practical aspect of your article, I must say your are, as you admit, criticizing little more than a childish worldview. Just a child always draws a picture in a very instinctive 2-dimensional way, the spiritual children (children by insight, and spiritual maturity, not by humility) of the Watchtower have painted a very simple picture.

    I remind you though, and this from a believer’s perspective, Jesus words on such mistaken worldviews:

    Jesus replied, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.”

    And the same said:

    “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

    Unfortunately the bending of scripture results in a lot of confusion, and debates over things neither side really understands.

    Having been delivered from the Watchtower, my appreciation for Paradise is much, much more realistic, and this due to the fact that my bible knowledge has not been filtered through the theology of men who love earthly things, and the glory of the earth.

    =====

    As I get ready to “post” this, I realize that there is a standard that says I must respect religious neutrality. Very odd standard for a site which itself cannot possibly claim neutrality.

    • March 25, 2016 at 10:15 pm
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      Happyface

      It was not our intention to promote atheism via this article, which is why we added the disclaimer at the very beginning.

      I believe that the author, P.B. wished to stimulate the thought processes of those who are held hostage to a very specific “new world” teaching promoted by Jehovah’s Witnesses. This view of the future not only conflicts with those who embrace atheism, but also conflicts with believers who teach that good persons go to heaven.

      Whatever your belief might be, we respect it just as we respect the fine work of Ray Franz, who exposed the Watchtower organization while still maintaining his personal beliefs.

      I hope that if you examine a wide sampling of JW Survey articles you will find that we make an honest effort to remain as neutral as possible

      Sincerely,

      JR

      • March 26, 2016 at 1:25 pm
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        I appreciate PB’s efforts in stimulating thought processes. I think the belief in Heaven versus a Paradise earth that is to allegedly be a carryover with improved and new management is where “faith” versus “belief” and facts breaks apart. As someone described it “magical thinking” or really not thinking at all through dismissive statements to cease any thoughts or examination of views.

        It’s still a material world and with oodles and oodles of miracles to make “bad” or missing things go away, it begs the question, why leave persons on earth, if its going to be equal to Heaven with miracle after miracle to negate physical laws? (keep in mind, and PB will probably get to this point, that the sun will explode then implode at some point along this infinite earthly existence journey).

        Meanwhile, God (back from semi-retirement after Christ hands over the “new elements”) will have his residence on earth, not in Heaven which means if you go to Heaven–slurp, munch, you’ve gotten the unlucky ticket, and will be “on call” for miracles–toting barges, and lifting bales–while on Earth, you’re sitting back watching all the excitement as corn grows.

      • March 27, 2016 at 3:33 am
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        Sorry John but you in fact do not try to remain neutral because you and all of the writers have woken up, so why would you remain neutral?
        You all do a great job though of helping people to learn to think for themselves `truth is not harmed by inquiry’ and of course this is the great problem with humans isn’t it?
        The uneducated have no idea, and the educated are so busy on the treadmill of life that there is no time to question anything, just leave it to MSM to keep us on the right track hey!

        • March 27, 2016 at 9:25 am
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          John Walsh

          I get what you are saying about neutrality, but it is important to clarify neutrality towards what? If you mean neutrality towards the Watchtower, then yes we are biased since we (as you correctly stated) have woken up. So, while we are not neutral in that regard, we try our very best to be neutral in relation to matters of faith and belief. Which means a person can be a writer for JW Survey and still have faith in God, but help to objectively expose the faults of the Watchtower organization.

          Thanks for your kind words, and we welcome your criticism

          JR

          • March 27, 2016 at 12:59 pm
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            That’s exactly why I’ve chosen JW Survey to read and find encouragement. I appreciate the fact that you are neutral in relation to matters of faith and beliefs. I’ve been out of the organization for about 8 years now and I feel like the indoctrination is finally out of my head. I’ve learned to think for myself and reason on things without fear of being labeled as rebellious or an apostate. I love reading the articles. You guys are printing what I’ve been thinking for years. So I thank you for that and keep up the good work.

    • March 26, 2016 at 8:13 am
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      I’ve always thought the use of the phrase “religious neutrality” a slightly odd choice due to the over all nature of the site, and perhaps it should be changed, especially as the site admins are specifically referring to comments of an evangelical nature.

      • March 27, 2016 at 6:23 am
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        I think the religious neutrality is very clear: commenters are not to promote one religious or philosophical point of view as the only possible answer. They need to allow room and show respect for differing viewpoints. As a regular commenter, I don’t feel in anyway encumbered by this. When necessary the moderators step in (which rarely occurs) to keep the site from becoming a free-for-all and loosing any semblance of continuity.

        WS

      • March 27, 2016 at 9:09 am
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        John, Fnord,

        Covert Fade explains the neutrality criteria in his comments below – this is what I understand from his comments: Articles are welcome from both theists and atheists for the Friday Column. The objective of the opinions expressed in the article, whether those opinions are related to faith or not related to faith, must be to show how those opinions relate to the author’s escaping the cult. The opinions expressed must not be solely for the purpose of evangelizing but must have as their objective the exposing/debunking/refuting/countering of the Watchtower’s teachings and practices.

        The example of the publications* produced by ex-GB member the late Raymond Franz, was cited to illustrate this objective for persons of faith who wish to submit articles.
        * CRISIS OF CONSCIENCE
        * IN SEARCH OF CHRISTIAN FREEDOM

        • March 27, 2016 at 10:44 am
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          The Ray Franz books are excellent resources for anyone who wants to understand the mind control and background of the JW sect. Regardless of whether your faith lies in theism, atheism, or scripture.

          WS

  • March 25, 2016 at 7:40 pm
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    Magical thinking knows no bounds and those use magical thinking will cross bounders that they shouldn’t.

  • March 25, 2016 at 8:02 pm
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    It all comes back to ‘Jehovah’s Spirit’ or really ‘Jehovah’s magic’.
    You can’t reason with the true believers but hopefully they will find something that helps them to open their eyes.
    In the meantime, their paradise will all be just wonderful and Jehovah will make it all work, somehow (as they ride off into the sunset on their Giant Pandas)

  • March 25, 2016 at 8:04 pm
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    Im all for being against the way WT handles sexual allegations, the lying, hypocrisy, etc.. But I’m NOT against what the bible says or promises, that’s taking a leap into being atheist, which the writer of this article clearly is. I respect your opinion, but do not agree with it.

    • March 25, 2016 at 9:59 pm
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      Victor – that is why we added the disclaimer at the beginning of the article. Your comments are welcome here.

      JR

    • March 26, 2016 at 2:33 am
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      Hi Victor.

      Thanks for your comment.

      Our Friday Column writers come from a variety of cultures and views, and we allow them to express themselves within reason as to their personal for realising Watchtower was not teaching the truth. The Friday Column is intended to be more of a personal reflection and opinion piece than our usual articles.

      P.B was expressing his PERSONAL reasons for doubting Watchtowers paradise teaching, whilst acknowledging in his article, and I quote:

      “It may be that all things are possible with God, that is not for me to say.”

      To elaborate, Raymond Franz’s book Crisis of Conscience explores from a Christian perspective how Raymond came to find Watchtower’s teachings irreconcilable with the Bible, and how he came to an understanding of Christian worship that he felt was correct by Bible standards. It’s an excellent work and one I highly recommend.

      If Ray had submitted Crisis of Conscience to us for JW Survey, we could not have published it as a regular JW Survey article, but we would have been able to publish it as a Friday Column.

      I hope that explains the situation.

  • March 25, 2016 at 8:25 pm
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    You have got to laugh ! Watchtower without electricity? So much for the internet, televison ,mobile phones,computers,washing machines, fridges, air and land transport ….the list goes on and on. The average domestic garden of a Jehovah’s Witness looks like a overgrown rubbish tip. These are the people who will beautify the earth ? Pull the other one Watchtower. The only Paradise you are working to is Walkill and the rank and file are excluded. Wake up suckers

    • March 26, 2016 at 4:38 am
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      They are unable to print enough literature now .hence the move to get everyone on these tablets to use instead. So when the internet goes down what the .i know some in the cong who dont have any publications at all just the tablet. It makes me laugh when an elder gets on the platform and we have ti wait ages for him to fiddle about with this “device” .with no internet no satelites to make it work how are the gona manage im 72 and told the elders im never gona buy and use this stuff its book or nothin .

      • March 26, 2016 at 1:29 pm
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        E books do have one benefit for someone of your age, though–the font sizing is in your control whereas with fixed-type books, you don’t have a choice.

        • March 26, 2016 at 3:46 pm
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          I have the analogue solution to that: a magnifying glass. Instant font enlarging!

  • March 25, 2016 at 8:33 pm
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    Good one one Victor I am with you on this. Too many people equate what the WT says and then blames Jehovah????? The two are not connected, other than the WT deigns to uses Jehovah’s name as it suits them. As to what will happen future wise whichever way anyone thinks is an academic argument, it is just guessing and I reckon it is better to wait and see.

  • March 26, 2016 at 12:58 am
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    When I was a JW I learned that God is just and fair. I also learned that human got some years to show themselves and everybody that we cannot rule this world because we don´t have knowledge and Jehovas guidance. Then Jehovah would come and clear the bad system of this wicked old world and a paradise with pandas would take its place. But it´s not just and fair of God when he uses magic and miracels. As a human I think that with that toolbox of magic and miracels anybody could clear up the misstakes humanity have done. If God´s goal was to show man that we cannot rule ourselves he should use the same tooles not swing his wand…

    • March 27, 2016 at 9:12 am
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      Certainly not a level playing field at all – God can use magic and miracles but humans can’t. Not fair, no wonder why “with God all things are possible”!

    • March 29, 2016 at 1:15 am
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      Very good point!

      M.

  • March 26, 2016 at 2:08 am
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    I have to say that I really appreciate this website for providing informative and thought provoking articles. Unfortunately this article is neither and I’m not surprised to see the disclaimer at the beginning. It is speculation about speculation and not helpful.

    When I was a JW the issues raised in this article were discussed frequently, and yes the answer was invariably wait and see, trust that Jehovah has the answers and will reveal them in due course. Your article does nothing to counter these arguments or contribute anything constructive. If you believe in a God who is responsible for creating this marvellous universe in the first place then the issues you raise are inconsequential.

    • March 26, 2016 at 3:19 am
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      @Eric Arthur. I have to agree with you. I love this website and the research it does and all the hard work they put into it. There is some outstanding journalism and research and reasoning here both from a religious and a non religious view. This article was not one of them When I read it I felt disconnected to the point the writer was trying to make and the reasoning in my opinion was very elementary and limited to shallow viewpoints. This is not criticism of the site just my opinion of what I read and it seems to be the opinion of others as well. I look forward to other articles and writings in the future. This site has been a great help to many trying to break away and also to have an online open forum. Please keep up the good work of exposing the WT for what it really is. A dangerous controlling Cult controlled with misguided leaders.

      • March 27, 2016 at 7:07 am
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        I understand what you are saying and I remember my time as a Jehovah’s Witness when every question would end with “Jehovah will take care of it” or “we just know that we will be happy”. They were very unsatisfying and not a little belittling.
        Still, I feel it was those questions that got my mind working (although not as much and not as soon as they should have)!
        So it’s good to pose questions like these and the illogical answers that JWs will inevitably come back with, for people still in the cult. Of course, those who have left won’t need to be reminded too much of how it all couldn’t work in the paradise when only a comparatively few untrained JWs would be left on the earth.
        In my area and circle of acquaintances the question of wether or not we would have cars in The New System came up again and again! I always found it comical because the most hard-core believers would adamantly claim that we NEEDED cars in paradise. These self-important men couldn’t imagine have to move their large carcasses around garden-like conditions even with ‘all the time in the world’! They have to be carried in an oversized metal box as they cruised at high speed, mowing down wildlife and polluting the atmosphere to get to their next public discourse and the inevitable free meal that would follow that.

    • March 26, 2016 at 8:09 am
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      Eric Aurthur Blair

      I actually agree with you on the matter that it is somewhat inconsequential to argue with a person of faith who credits God with the marvels of creation and the miracles of life. An atheist will go around in circles with a believer, with the argument always ending in “With God all things are possible”.

      I am not criticizing this fact, I am just recognizing it. We do not wish to alienate anyone, and we respect our readers of faith. I hope that everyone reads the disclaimer and views the article as an opinion piece designed to provoke thought. We welcome submissions from the other points of view, and will add a disclaimer whenever needed to maintain objectivity.

      As I have told others, your comments are welcome here

      Sincerely

      John Redwood

      • March 26, 2016 at 8:27 am
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        Folks, as my fellow editor John Redwood has pointed out, we are open from Friday Column submissions from all points of view.

        If you feel you have an article you would like to submit, please email to us and we will consider for publication. We will not publish articles that simply attempt to convert readers to another religion or lack of it, but if during your discussion of a Watchtower related subject you touch briefly upon your own opinions related to faith, and how they relate to your escaping the cult, we will be happy to publish them, as we did for P.B, making clear that these opinions are yours and are not an attempt to force others to share your view, as we did with P.B

        :)

    • March 27, 2016 at 6:41 am
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      Too add my two cents, I think the editing staff does a good job of posting articles that appeal to a wide array of mindsets of those who have left the JW cult. Some of us have gone over to mainstream Christianity, while others have gone into a sort of our own version of Christianity that keeps some of the tenets of the JWs, but rejects others. Still, some of us have moved well outside Christianity into the realms of Deism and Atheism. The articles should equally offer topics of interest to all camps. Thus not all articles will not necessarily resonate with your own personal belief system. But others may appreciate them. And you have the option to comment on what your thoughts are on the topic. But don’t fault the editorial staff for posting something that doesn’t sit with your specific belief system. I think this “there can only be one truth” mentality is residual of Watchtower conditioning. I liked the article and hope the staff will continue to publish others like it.

      WS

  • March 26, 2016 at 3:01 am
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    As they say, the devil is in the detail.

  • March 26, 2016 at 3:34 am
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    Power=matter=power= chickens and eggs=7 idiots:-)

  • March 26, 2016 at 3:49 am
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    Food for thought PB –
    Have you noticed how ‘New World’ has been dropped from Watchtower publications? This is since George W and his associates have constantly barraged us with their ‘New World Order’ which will lead to peace and security. One world government, one world religion is their ultimate goal. Sound familiar? It should do, it appears that Watchtower is as deeply ingrained into this agenda as the world powers. Of course, they have the same Master over them don’t they??

  • March 26, 2016 at 4:15 am
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    Another thought, this earth is already a paradise if left to its own devices. Look to where mankind has not ruined his way across the globe and all things continue quite happily. The seasons go on, the animals survive, the birds continue to sing, the flowers continue to bloom.

    The one scripture you missed PB is of course that God will only put to ruin those ruining the earth. The choice then is in our own hands.

    • March 26, 2016 at 1:42 pm
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      Ok then, who is ruining the earth? We all are. Who is offering solutions? How can the world unite to clean up our act when half the world is saying something must be done and is looking for and offering solutions and the other half is saying “what’s the use when our future is already pre-determined”. Leave it in Jehovahs/Gods hands. Can anybody identify a problem here? Just last week scientists released results of the DNA testing of 430,000 yr old bones discovered decades ago deep underground in Spain, having only just recently had the technology to determine their origin. It seems Humans now have a clear link back through Neanderthals and they in turn have a link through an even earlier species named Denisovan. I’ve also earlier read elsewhere that DNA testing shows we are uncomfortably closely related to chimpanzees. The evidence is building here and eventually, somethings gotta give. Science takes us forward while the bible and it’s attitudes are locked in the bronze age and unable to move. Just like the GB. It beggars belief that there are people who will slam their heads into the sand at this, preferring instead to believe that mankind was created from a hand full of dirt and a piece of rib! Surely, if a person wants to recover fully from a religious cult they need to examine the root of the problem. How much harder would an alcoholics recovery be if he/she has one foot in a liquor store and one foot out? A thought, and I fully accept that there are people who just need to believe, for whatever reason, but if you don’t start listening me, there’s going to be some serious shunning going on. Coming to a town near you!! You’ve been warned.

    • March 26, 2016 at 1:42 pm
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      @Bad Penny – the Earth left to it’s own devices is resilient–even where natural disasters wipe out fauna and flora, each regenerates over time. In fact, if one buys into the Evolution and Cosmic story that some individuals of science extrapolate from grains of evidence, the Earth has rebounded several times over the last million or more years, even bringing forward “us”.

      The problem I see highlighted by the “disgruntled” replies is that same old, same old with JW’s. If it challenges the “establishment viewpoints,” it must be dismissed. It’s why the Watchtower clings to 607 BC(E) and 1914 AD. Yet no one goes deep into the history of why 607 or 1914 to realize they’re deeply rooted in the failed 1844 date deriving from belief that the “Last Days” started in 1799.

      It’s why the Watchtower clings to 144,000 as literal despite extreme evidence that the tribes listed are not literal and that the “great crowd” endures the same tribulation as the “144,000”.

      It’s why the Watchtower opts to use stauros as “tree pole” instead of admitting that 50-50 it can mean “a crossed set of beams”. It’s why the Watchtower propped up anti-Trinity arguments with antiquated research and books, and fabricated quotes until recently reliquishing to pure Scripture quotes to justify its views.

      Maintain the status quo–mediocrity and obedience is better than mercy and sacrifice.

  • March 26, 2016 at 9:51 am
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    Fine article PB. Childhood imaginings, a wonderful time
    all things are possible, all things are certain to the young
    mind. Then progressively as we grow the hard facts of
    life dawn on us, and this process goes on even into old age.

    Reality is not always welcome, I, the same as many others,
    backed off from confronting my own mortality. Then in 1958
    When I was 26, a lady came to my door, talking about ever-
    lasting life on a paradise earth. I was hooked!

    Then a few years later, “Wonderfull news brothers” said the
    C,O, in his talk to our congregation. 1975 the end of 6,000
    years of mans history. The society thinks it would be
    appropriate for Christ’s millennium to coincide wth the
    beginning of mans 7,000th year.”

    Great excitement and activity followed, brothers selling their
    houses in order to pioneer, growth percentage shot up to
    record heights. Illustrated calendars that they sold, ( as 1975
    drew close) were printed in Red, a colour denoting URGENCY
    said our bethel instructor.

    Sadly for us all ( Some more than others) Reality eclipsed our
    expectations. They say “Hard earned lessons teach us the best”,

    (or maybe I just made that up! ) But one thing is certain. If we
    keep on, being hooked by the same fantasies emanating from
    a proven bogus and failed source. Then we are naive, ( not in
    the wonderful way that children are), but gullible, wide open
    to exploitation, and disappointment .

  • March 26, 2016 at 12:47 pm
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    Sod, the supermarkets, John Redwood, if the roads are blocked, we can’t get to Kingdom Halls and that is a true tragedy..

  • March 26, 2016 at 4:06 pm
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    Your comment: Taking descriptions of Paradise straight from jw.org, we find:

    Isaiah 65:21-23. “The work of their own hands my chosen ones will use to the full. They will not toil for nothing, nor will they bring to birth for disturbance.”

    John 5:28, 29. “The hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear [Jesus’] voice and come out.”

    Revelation 21:4. “[God] will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.”

    Every one of these are scriptures directly from the Bible, only quoted in the WT. You can attack the WT all you want, but I upsets me to see you attacking the Bible. There are many here who have become atheists and that’s their choice, I am ok with that. But for the rest of us struggling with leaving the Org., it does not mean we are leaving the BIBLE or GOD. It’s bad enough that JWs like to tell each other that ones who leave, leave GOD when we are only leaving this false religion. There are many who come here confused and upset who still have a deep love for God and his word. Attacking the Bible just makes it harder for them.

    • March 27, 2016 at 2:46 am
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      Aussie –
      It is very hard to maintain some vestige of faith after leaving the WT. It seems that because of all the lies and twisted scripture we don’t know quite what to believe. I guess we have to try and make sense of it all ourselves.
      The Bible is available on line in many different translations. Trashing the NWT is probably the best thing we can do as it has been influenced by spiritistic translators. However, I still find it useful for finding scriptures and cross referencing, then I look the same verses up in other Bibles. I try to keep a positive outlook and not be too troubled by what others think.

    • March 27, 2016 at 6:12 am
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      @AussieneedingComfort
      I don’t think the writer was necessarily attacking these scriptures, but rather the Watchtower interpretation of them. There are many, many Christian religions that accept these scriptures without the Watchtower’s spin on them.

      WS

    • March 27, 2016 at 7:05 am
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      @AussieneedingComfort

      >>>There are many who come here confused and upset who still have a deep love for God and his word. Attacking the Bible just makes it harder for them.

      Respectfully, which bible are you referring to NWT, KJV, ISV, Aramaic Bible in Plain English, etc.? Or better yet which version of the NWT, 1984 or 2013? I’m sure the rewriters of the NWT probably have off to the side a spirally wound binder with upcoming revisions to..to …to make it more progressive!

      IMHO

      dogstar

      • March 27, 2016 at 6:46 pm
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        It doesn’t matter. When hubby and I read our Bibles together, we use up to 10 different translations and that gives us an excellent overview.

    • March 28, 2016 at 3:30 am
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      Hello Aussie. I’m sorry that you feel upset at people like me ‘dissing’ the bible. Next time you’re in a situation where you need to ask yourself – “what would God think of this”, try asking the same question twice, only the second time substitute the word ‘God’ for ‘my conscience’. If you get the same answer both times, you’re on the right track no matter what.

  • March 26, 2016 at 5:17 pm
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    Correction to previous comment, Watchtower claimed,
    “It would be appropriate for Christ’s millennium to
    coincide with the beginning of mans 7th period of a
    1,000 years.” But I’m sure you already knew that.

  • March 26, 2016 at 6:59 pm
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    There is a Restaurant at the end of the universe and they are serving Watchtower daily. By the way, please bring your towel, the restaurant has an investigative crew investigating the whole JW Serving. You may cry and need a towel. We will discuss 42 ways that the Watchtower cannot handle their responsibilities. We will also discuss Life, the universe and everything else Watchtower loses site of. So long, and thanks for all the fish.

  • March 27, 2016 at 6:29 am
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    The paradise world of the Jehovah’s Witnesses is only one more version of the ideal that humans have conjectured and imagined for millennia, whether it is heaven or an earthly paradise where living is everything it is not here, no sickness, death, crime, hatred.
    The Bible is best viewed in its context, and in comparison to other literature of its time.

  • March 27, 2016 at 7:02 am
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    Watching a TV prog, last night, about a remote Amazon
    Tribe. I was impressed how happy and relaxed they were,
    living in tune with nature, children diving and swimming
    in the river.

    It’s thought that there are about 15 such tribes in that area
    and many more in other parts of the world, some who have
    had no contact with so called “civilisation”

    The almost impossibility of contacting these people with
    “The Good News” crossed my mind, also, (Assuming they
    survived Armageddon.). What would they want with WT’s
    version of a Paradise Earth? It would be a retrograde move
    from natural freedom to being organised under a corporate
    administration. —

    Though the present 7 may (or may not) have received their
    expected reward in heaven, it’s claimed God always has an
    organisation. So these freedom loving tribes would have to
    submit to that structure. If they refused, I shudder to think
    of what their fate might be. Especially if either the
    resurrected Moses or Joshua had a say in it.

  • March 27, 2016 at 7:05 am
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    Awesome article. Love the hitchhikers guide reference. Maybe they will hitch a ride to another planet! Growing up I used to ask my parents where all the people would go once the earth filled up after Armageddon. My dad who was second generation said “maybe we will go to other planets. Anything is possible.” Hmmm. So I guess with all their continuing education they will have plenty of astronauts to complete these travels.

  • March 27, 2016 at 7:25 am
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    It should be noted that the God of the Bible seems to always use natural means to accommodate his purposes. Floods, earthquakes, seas, frogs, etc. Why not just “poof” and something is fixed or the bad guys are gone? Apparently the God of Scripture restricts himself by the natural laws he has put into place. So to the article’s point, you cannot count on God to just magically provide the necessities in some new world Utopia. He has created a mechanism on earth to provide for human needs and thus we need to depend on that mechanism.

    Personally, I think the Creator has given mankind all the tools we need to improve our lives immensely, without the need for him to step in and provide these as if by magic. We simply need to learn to work in harmony with these mechanisms to take full advantage of their potential. I think the amazing advances in the realm of the sciences over the past century are just the beginning of humanity being able to tap into the immense power that available to us. At the same time we are just starting to learn to live more peacefully with one another and to be more tolerant of our fellow man.

    WS

  • March 27, 2016 at 7:28 am
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    Not until God finally eliminates satan will there be any real peace. Bigger issue though who created us with free-will and yet we are handicapped with imperfections? How about letting man’s free-will play out in its entirety(fully to its end!) versus an spiritual “intervention”, once again. The Hail-Mary play called Regret(Flood) has not played out too well. Any takers on other interventions not documented(perhaps WW1, WW2) versus the only ones noted in the Bible? Suddenly, a new world order of 144,000 will do it? Personally I’ll pass, not interested!!

    O.T. Curious, for the few ex-jw’s here. Why is there attachment to the word “Jehovah”? Correct to say, Jehovah is only for believing JWs?

    IMHO

    dogstar

    • March 27, 2016 at 10:11 am
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      @SIRIUS

      “The Hail-Mary play called Regret (Flood) has not played out too well.”

      The Flood certainly didn’t play out well, as humans have carried on after the flood in their usual ways. One wonders, how then does a moral and omniscient God justify wiping out most of life (not just humans – according to the Bible, God was angry with human wickedness but he destroyed the animals as well) in the worldwide flood if mankind was only to continue on as before? Well, maybe God found the people pre-flood to be more wicked than the people post-flood.

      God didn’t intervene in WW1 or WW2, but maybe he is waiting on WW3 to do so?

      • March 27, 2016 at 10:25 am
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        God did make an unconditional covenant with Noah that he will never again destroy the earth by means of a flood: Genesis 9:9-17. God promised to keep this covenant, regardless of what man would subsequently do, regardless of whether man would subsequently continue to sin (unconditional covenant).

        It is a covenant not only between God and Noah, but between God and every living creature (Genesis 9:9-10, 16). It is an “everlasting covenant,” between God and Noah, and every generation after him (Genesis 9:12). It is God’s promise that He will never again destroy the earth by means of a flood (Genesis 9:11). So maybe there is no more divine intervention to come?

  • March 27, 2016 at 8:16 am
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    Great tongue and cheek article.

    Since the Watchtower frowns on higher education how many brothers or sisters can operate a nuclear power plant or hydro-electric substation? All modern conveniences will be, of course, neutralized within no time as there are few if any J.W.’s qualified or educated enough to overcome the meltdown. It will be the Israelite Exodus and the complaints to Moses in the wilderness all over again!

    But I digress; the expression “Paradise earth” is not mentioned one time in the sacred scriptures. Type in “paradise earth” (in quotes) on the Watchtower C.D. ROM and see how many times that expression appears in the ‘Silver Sword’ or any other translation. Not one time!

  • March 27, 2016 at 8:18 am
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    I don’t see where the author of the article is attacking the Bible as is being claimed.

    He identifies what information is provided by the WT from the Bible about what will obtain in Paradise. As this information does not give any details about how Paradise will work, the author finds it necessary to ask questions about this.

    The WT’s Paradise Earth doctrine must be questioned as it is what is used to lure persons into the cult – every cult has a lure factor, Paradise Earth is the JW’s lure factor. People need to now exactly why they should give up their beliefs/religion to become a JW – how exactly will this Paradise Earth work? I personally wished that I had questioned the JW’s Paradise Earth doctrine more instead of just accepting the few Bible verses which they presented or taking the position that the Bible should not be questioned.

    But I suppose that the great escape/disclaimer/caveat for the JWs is: well, if the Bible does not provide any details then we don’t know/can’t say how the Paradise Earth will work either. And no questions should be asked, just accept what the WT and the Bible say about the promised Paradise Earth.

    We can use critical thinking and our power of reasoning in every other aspect of our life but when it comes to what the WT and the Bible say about the promised Paradise Earth, this is taboo? We must just suspend our critical thinking skills and power of reasoning and just accept the promised Paradise Earth doctrine without question? Why?

    • March 27, 2016 at 7:01 pm
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      My comment was: “Every one of these are scriptures directly from the Bible, only quoted in the WT. You can attack the WT all you want, but I upsets me to see you attacking the Bible.” I believe the Bible and will continue to do so. Just because JW twist scripture, does not mean the original scripture is wrong. Use your critical thinking and figure out what the Bible is saying, not the WT. My hubby and I use up to 10 different translations to get the meaning of the scripture—separate from DOCTRINE. So I disagree with your calling it “Paradise Earth doctrine.” The BIBLE is the one who says the earth will last forever with righteous people on it. It’s not a doctrine. Same as the Bible says “do not murder” and that’s not a “doctrine” either. Critical thinking should move you to examine the meaning of the word “doctrine”. I hope I have not offended anyone here, that is not my intent. My intent is to show the wickedness of the WT and how they twist scripture to abuse people not to destroy belief in the Bible.

      • March 28, 2016 at 11:18 am
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        Hi Aussieneedingcomfort,

        “The BIBLE is the one who says the earth will last forever with righteous people on it.”

        I imagine that you are referring to the following scriptures which you have taken to be LITERAL? :

        – Ecclesiastes 1:4
        – Psalm 37:29
        – Psalm 104:5
        – Psalm 78:69

        The Bible also states that the Earth will NOT last forever – couldn’t these scriptures be LITERAL as well?:

        – 2 Peter 3:10
        – Matthew 24:35
        – Hebrews1:10 – 11
        – Isaiah 51:6
        – Psalm 102: 25 – 26

  • March 27, 2016 at 8:20 am
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    1. Are the author’s comments speculation about speculation or is there data which can be used to evaluate whether a Paradise Earth is possible?

    According to WT theology, all of the dead are to be resurrected on earth – can the earth accommodate the resurrected persons plus the JW Armageddon survivors?

    How Many People Have Ever Lived On Earth? 108 billion as at mid-2011 according to Population Reference Bureau estimates:
    http://www.prb.org/Publications/Articles/2002/HowManyPeopleHaveEverLivedonEarth.aspx

    The earth’s land area is: 148 326 000 square km (57 268 900 square miles)

    Based on these figures, the earth’s population density would be 728 persons per square km (1886 persons per square mile).

    How does this compare to the current situation in China?
    According to
    http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/china-population/

    The current population of China is 1,380,679,751 as of Sunday, March 27, 2016, based on the latest United Nations estimates.

    The total land area of China is 9,390,784 square km (3,625,800 square miles).

    Based on these figures, the current population density of China is 147 persons per square km (381 persons per square miles).

    So the population density of a paradise earth, based solely on the number of persons estimated to be resurrected, would be about 5 times that of China. Would this be ecologically sustainable?

    The Watchtower’s depictions of paradise contain surreal images of tamed animals, children, and luxury houses separated by many kilometres of parkland.

    – will persons be able to continue having children with such a population density?

    – will there be sparsely populated tracts of land, filled with mansions/luxury houses with such a population density?

    The Watchtower’s depictions of this world appears to contain no infrastructure, no road, no factories and apparently electricity will be underground, yet these depictions have beautiful houses built from complex materials.

    How will travelling be done with no roads? Apparently by helicopter and everything will be delivered by drone, Amazon at last having rolled it out?

    • March 27, 2016 at 11:12 am
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      Ecclesiastes 1:4 “A generation goes and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.”

      I look at life on this planet as similar to an amusement park ride: we have our time on it and hopefully enjoy the ride, but when it’s done it’s time get off and let someone else have their turn.

      The scriptures do not support life eternal on this earth. Once we are done with the “ride” where we go is open to speculation.

      And by the way, as for this earth lasting forever, the Hebrew word translated “forever” (olam) does not really carry the sense of eternity. Note what one source states: “This word is frequently translated as eternity or forever but in the English language it is misunderstood to mean a continual span of time that never ends. In the Hebrew mind it is simply what is at or beyond the horizon, a very distant time.” – http://jewishroots.net/library/anti_missionary_objections/how_long_is_forever.html

      WS

      • March 27, 2016 at 1:02 pm
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        “I look at life on this planet as similar to an amusement park ride: we have our time on it and hopefully enjoy the ride, but when it’s done it’s time to get off and let someone else have their turn.”

        Similarly, I don’t believe that it is necessary for me to live forever – it certainly is necessary for man to be mortal given the fact that the earth’s capacity is finite. While on the planet/amusement park we make our contributions to this life and realize that the day will come when we must hand over to the next generation as our ride in the park has ended. If you have the opportunity to immortalize yourself by having children……..great.

        I find that mortality is not necessarily a bad thing – the cycle of birth and death is what leads to the diversity of the gene pool as different permutations and combinations of genes are created as mankind reproduces over time, and so this is why we can have an Albert Einstein every few years, a Beethoven every few years, an Elvis Presley every few years, a Bob Marley every few years etc. etc.

  • March 27, 2016 at 8:23 am
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    2. A famous scripture quoted by the WT regarding the outcome of Armageddon is Jeremiah 25:33 – albeit this scripture is not about Armageddon but nevertheless the WT claims that it is:

    Jeremiah 25:33
    “Those slain by the Lord on that day will be from one end of the earth to the other. THEY WILL NOT BE lamented, gathered or BURIED; THEY WILL BE LIKE DUNG ON THE FACE OF THE GROUND” (emphasis mine).

    With no burial of the 7.4 billion non-JWs ( based on current world population http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/ )
    to be destroyed at Armageddon what a public health hazard that will be. I personally would not have the intestinal fortitude to watch dead corpses rot and be mauled by beasts and carrion birds.

    3. How will resurrected criminals be dealt with in Paradise? Will there be prisons to house these ones until their personalities have been transformed?

    4. Will there be freak accidents in Paradise? I imagine the answer to that will be no as there will be lots of divine intervention with the angels working overtime. So why doesn’t God/the angels intervene now to prevent freak accidents from occurring? Is it that people are not worthy of God’s protection/divine intervention?

    5. Will the earth last forever?
    It is a scientific fact that the sun being a star, will eventually die like all stars do. As the sun goes through its death throes it will either consume the earth or simply render life on earth impossible:
    http://www.space.com/14364-earth-consumed-red-giant-star-5b-years.html

    The sun cannot go on burning forever as it has a finite source of hydrogen fuel which will eventually be exhausted as the hydrogen is consumed by the nuclear fusion process that converts it into helium and light energy (the light energy is needed to sustain life on earth).

    What the answers to the above questions and the points raised above tell me, is that the Paradise Earth doctrine has not been thought through. That doctrine is for persons who are willing to suspend their critical thinking skills and power of reasoning.

  • March 27, 2016 at 9:12 am
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    There are to many people waiting for the ‘God’ of the heavens to wave a magic wand (holy ghost / spirit) and fix everything. When the fact remains that we as humans living on this planet now, without the help of a ‘higher power’, need to fix things ourselves. This mentality of a god-cure gives people little or no responsibility for their own actions and how they help or hurt the planet and environment we now live within.

    I have a great amount of faith in mankind and hope that the future will be as wonderful as science fiction often depicts. We will learn more about ourselves and the environment we live in. We will continue to journey into the reaches of space, etc. etc. and so much more.

    For a visual glimpse into the JW version of paradise, just watch or read the The Stand. Although this story is fictional, it does give a glimpse into the clean-up and restoration of what they (JW’s) are looking forward to.

  • March 27, 2016 at 9:23 am
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    @WS
    I agree with your statement that “the creator has given us what we need to improve our lives”. We cannot avoid the responsibility we have to direct our own lives. We have experienced the consequences of allowing others to insert their consciences and man made rules on our lives. (The org)

    I hold on to the hope the earth will be a paradise, I’m just not clear how it will come about. I don’t think it will be by destroying billions of people. The ruining of the earth is more about violent, vicious people than it is pollution. If we reflect on Noah’s day it wasn’t about pollution. Even if you don’t subscribe to the idea of a global flood (which I do not, I feel it was localized but would seem global to the writer) the lesson is more about why there was a flood not so much where. It would seem peaceful, paradise conditions is more about people and their attitudes than how much CO2 is in the atmosphere.

    This article has accomplished its goal. It has promoted thoughtful interchange of many ideas to ponder.

    Regards

    • March 27, 2016 at 10:30 am
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      @Eyes opened:

      ” I hold on to the hope the earth will be a paradise, I’m just not clear how it will come about………”

      Your perspective that there will be a paradise earth still nevertheless seems to call for divine intervention. What reasons are there for me to believe that this divine intervention will take place to create a paradise earth as per your perspective?

      • March 27, 2016 at 11:10 am
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        Hi dee2,

        This is my personal view and I would not presume to try to convince others of it. However I have chosen to believe in a creator based on not just the Bible but also the marvels around me that I don’t think were mere happenstance. No one saw God’s finger push the button for the big bang but no one was there to say he didn’t. I’m not convinced that everything we know as the Bible is truly all inspired but I do accept Jesus teachings because I can prove to myself they work. If I’m going to believe in Jesus then it stands to reason I accept his Kingdom. I do think at some point God will intervene. Again these are personal choices that I try to reason on everyday. We have so much information we have access to, there doesn’t seem to be a limit to the conclusions we can come to. May we never stop searching and seeking the truths we can live with.

        Regards

      • March 27, 2016 at 11:23 am
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        A paradise earth as conceived in the Watchtower publications would require quite a bit of divine intervention. However as they say, “one man’s paradise is another man’s…”

        I contend that paradise need not be a some Eden-like place where millions of fig leaf clad people frolick in the mist. But rather it can be a functional world where we are not constantly polluting and we live in peace with our neighbors. I think this type of world is within our reach and does not require divine intervention. As citizens of this planet it is something we should all be working toward.

        WS

        • March 27, 2016 at 12:21 pm
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          I surely agree. But there are some so bent on evil…

          • March 27, 2016 at 12:56 pm
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            Yes, those who are evil must either be educated so as to change or be removed. I think of men like Adolf Hitler or Benito Musillini. The world back then had to act to remove the evil and there may be days ahead where it must be done again. But we cannot sit on our hands and wait for God to fix it. The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

            WS

          • March 27, 2016 at 1:14 pm
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            “…….we cannot sit on our hands…….”

            I don’t know about you Winston S, but I sit on my derriere……..lol.

          • March 27, 2016 at 1:26 pm
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            @dee2
            LOL

            WS

  • March 27, 2016 at 1:16 pm
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    @WS,

    You make very good points which has resulted in some lively discussion at my place. Enjoying it.

    Regards

    • March 27, 2016 at 1:25 pm
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      Good to hear.

      WS

  • March 27, 2016 at 4:21 pm
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    How will Jehovah’s Witnesses survive the upcoming global annihilation? We still haven’t figured out how the world recovered from the last global annihilation, which happened only 4500 years ago. But the bible does indicate that everything went smoothly.

    Enough water to cover the entire surface the earth — including the tops of the highest mountains — manifested itself and then drained away. Fortunately, eight human beings and millions of pairs of land animals, birds, reptiles etc. were safely tucked away in an arc. Somehow, everyone survived the in the arc and later survived on the earth after the flood.

    Once the flood waters receded, the polar bears went the the arctic, the penguins went to the antarctic, the giraffes went to Africa and the kangaroos hopped off to Australia. About 100 years after the ark docked, there were enough human beings to establish the city of Babylon and build a tower.

    Apparently, there were no serious problems for the survivors after the last global annihilation. Perhaps the next global annihilation will play out the same way.

  • March 27, 2016 at 8:00 pm
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    I was thinking about how we are ‘made in Gods image’. Well if that is true how come I am not homophobic and want them all killed? How come I don’t want my kids to ‘worship’ me, just respect me would be fine… How come I am not racist choosing one race above another? How come I don’t devalue women and treat them as inferior? How come I don’t slaughter thousands of people? How come I don’t want things butchered (sacrificed)to me?… I could go on…

  • March 28, 2016 at 6:33 am
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    @ Jeff canning. Please do “Go on” Jeff, don’t stop now.
    The first instalment was so good it deserves a sequel.

  • March 28, 2016 at 7:08 am
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    So are we all agreed that the WTCorp hasn’t got a clue concerning the paradise Earth?
    If so, neither does anyone else. None of us saw the earth come into existence. Every contributor to this site quotes somebody else- get the picture? In other words we rely on others. No one here as far as I can tell has personally proved anything scientifically. Science is constantly revising itself and its ideas/theories. If that is true, and it is, then for those who accept the bible as opposed to those who accept something else are just as entitled to a comment without prejudice as anyone else. Otherwise this site is teetering on the edge of irrelevancy as a means for ex JW’s and those still undecided to express themselves.

    • March 29, 2016 at 8:19 am
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      So, if I understand you correctly, the Bible can’t be trusted and science can’t be trusted as well? What a spot of bother the human race has found itself in brother.

  • March 28, 2016 at 8:48 am
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    Professor Robert Beckford presented a brilliant documentary on BBC1 last Tuesday (22 March) which looked at how issues such as immigration, radical social action and conservative morality are all transforming the face of the Christian faith. Nothing about the JWs and their Paradise Earth.

  • March 28, 2016 at 11:22 am
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    Hi Aussieneedingcomfort,

    “The BIBLE is the one who says the earth will last forever with righteous people on it.”

    I imagine that you are referring to the following scriptures which you have taken to be LITERAL? :

    – Ecclesiastes 1:4
    – Psalm 37:29
    – Psalm 104:5
    – Psalm 78:69

    The Bible also states that the Earth will NOT last forever – couldn’t these scriptures be LITERAL as well?:

    – 2 Peter 3:10
    – Matthew 24:35
    – Hebrews1:10 – 11
    – Isaiah 51:6
    – Psalm 102: 25 – 26

    • March 28, 2016 at 12:15 pm
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      @Aussieneedingcomfort:
      The JW indoctrination that we were subject to created a very narrow perspective on scripture and their interpretation. The fact of the matter is that there are a number of ways to look at scripture and gain a deeper understanding once we free ourselves from predisposed view that is actually residual of our Watchtower background.

      Once you are far enough out of the cult, you can begin to see these things. Not sure how long you have been out, but it seems like your awakening may be fairly new. When we have newly broken free from the cult, articles like this one are seen threatening to our faith. Once we have gotten our sense of perception recalibrated so to speak, we can begin to see the value in considering alternate points of view, even if we don’t ultimately accept them.

      I think this is what Dee is trying to do for you with the alternate interpretation of scriptures brought up. To add my two cents to this particular topic, see my earlier comments about the Hebrew word that is often translated “forever” and the inaccuracy associated with such a usage.

      WS

    • March 29, 2016 at 5:12 am
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      Dee2,
      This website has a rule: RELIGIOUS NEUTRALITY – Do not post comments that are evangelical in nature or may be construed as imposing one person’s religious beliefs (or lack thereof) over those of another.

      I understand you no longer have belief in the Bible, but I do and will continue to do so. I have not once tried to tell you how you should view the Bible and yet you are repeatedly telling me how I need to doubt it and find fault with it. Like I said earlier, attack the WT all you want, but stop trying to destroy faith in the Bible. Let’s drop this and agree to disagree.

      • March 29, 2016 at 6:27 am
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        AussieneedingComfort,

        “Like I said earlier, attack the WT all you want……..”

        As I recall, like yourself, the WT also takes the following scriptures to be LITERAL in order to prove that the earth will last forever:

        – Ecclesiastes 1:4 
        – Psalm 37:29
        – Psalm 104:5
        – Psalm 78:69

        but insists that the following scriptures which state that the earth will NOT last forever are FIGURATIVE:

        – 2 Peter 3:10
        – Matthew 24:35
        – Hebrews 1:10 – 11
        – Isaiah 51:6
        – Psalm 102: 25 – 26

        Couldn’t it be the other way round? Couldn’t it be that the scriptures taken to be LITERAL are in fact FIGURATIVE and vice versa? There are persons who believe in the Bible who are of this view – do you consider these Bible believers to be attacking the Bible because they do not agree with your or the WT’s viewpoint/interpretation?

        Regards.

  • March 28, 2016 at 6:24 pm
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    I love cruise vacations. When I was a good jdub I used to contemplate how long would it be in Paradise before the cruise lines were back in business. I felt guilty because I figured it would be a very low priority, and I hated that idea.

    • March 28, 2016 at 9:16 pm
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      I can remember the topic of paradise earth transportation coming up when I was studying. My instructor said that the mode of transportation was not important because we would have forever to get wherever we were going.

      • March 28, 2016 at 11:38 pm
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        When you have forever, a raft will work just fine.

        • March 29, 2016 at 10:55 am
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          Bonus……….the view from the raft might be much better than the view from the cruise ship.

  • March 28, 2016 at 11:36 pm
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    Here’s another problem with the WT’s promised Paradise earth.
    The WT anticipates that there will be non-conformists during Paradise who will have to be put to death:

    1) YOU CAN LIVE FOREVER IN PARADISE ON EARTH Pg. 178 states:
    “Even under these best of circumstances, some will refuse to serve God. As the Scriptures say: ‘Though the wicked one should be shown favor, he simply will not learn righteousness. In the land of straight forwardness he will act unjustly’ (Isaiah 26:10). So after being given full opportunity to change their ways and to learn righteousness, such wicked ones will be destroyed. Some will be put to death even before Judgment Day ends”.

    2) According to YOU CAN LIVE FOREVER IN PARADISE ON EARTH Pg. 183, those persons who survive to the end of the millennial Judgment Day face a further test when Satan is loosed to again deceive humanity (Revelation 20). Following this test, God will destroy those persons who turn away from Jehovah and his government.

    Yet according to Hebrews 9:27:
    “Just as people are destined to DIE ONCE, and after that to face judgment” (emphasis mine).

    So the WT had better make sure to build some prisons in Paradise as it won’t be possible to put resurrected non-conformists to death since resurrected persons can’t die twice.

    • March 29, 2016 at 12:02 pm
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      ********Also, according to Jesus’ words at Luke 20:34-36 (NIV):

      “The people of THIS AGE marry and are given in marriage. But those who are considered worthy of taking part in THE AGE TO COME and IN THE RESURRECTION FROM THE DEAD will neither marry nor be given in marriage, and they CAN NO LONGER DIE; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection.” (emphasis mine)

      According to WT theology:
      – the earthly resurrection takes place in THE AGE TO COME
      – the WT’s heavenly resurrection, however, takes place in THIS (PRESENT) AGE having commenced in 1918.

      Persons resurrected in the WT’s earthly Paradise which takes place IN THE AGE TO COME can therefore NO LONGER DIE.

      Some prisons may therefore be in order for those resurrected non-conformists since resurrected persons can no longer die.

  • March 29, 2016 at 6:30 am
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    The author, PB, quoted verses from Isaiah 65 in his article above. Isaiah 65:17-25 is famously used by the WT to describe the perfect living conditions on the promised paradise earth but is this scripture really describing the promised Paradise?

    According to Isaiah 65 vs. 20:
    “Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; the one who DIES at a hundred will be thought a mere child; the one who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed” (emphasis mine).

    Despite the mention of death in Isaiah 65 the Watchtower uses this text as proof that this earth is to be an everlasting Paradise in which death is no more.

    • March 29, 2016 at 12:06 pm
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      @dee2
      Excellent point. I believe the actual fulfillment of Isaiah 65 is the restoration of Israel from Babylonian captivity. Extending the application to a new world paradise is solely a watchtower doctrine.

      WS

  • March 29, 2016 at 7:26 am
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    I just wanted to be like Captain Ron, take along Captain Jack with a lot of Captain Morgan. Then last years August watchtower said I would be assigned to where I would be going, live and what I would be doing. Last week my granddaughter was born at 24 weeks and just over 1lb. She is fighting for her life. I’ll probably be one of the ones shunned for being a persistent wrong doer for supporting my df’d son. Right now Paradise is a long way off if it exists at all. I mentioned in another article that I would give this little baby my lifes blood if it would keep her alive. Df’ing is around the corner I guess. god will judge me. not the Borg. Sorry, a bit off topic but I am on an emotional rollercoaster right now.

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