In 1947 the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists featured a clock on the cover of its magazine which came to be known as the “Doomsday Clock.” While World War II had ended, the threat of global nuclear warfare had just begun. Tension between the United States and the Soviet Union escalated in 1949 when the Soviets detonated a bomb in central Asia, causing international concern. The Bulletin Scientists moved the symbolic minute hand from seven minutes to midnight to 3 minutes before midnight, indicating just how close they felt the world was to a possible nuclear holocaust.

Throughout the years the minute hand has ticked back and forth with world events as scientists have monitored the arms buildup of the superpowers.  In time, the “Doomsday Clock” became linked with the term “doomsday cult.”


Cover of Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, February 1958
Cover of Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, February 1958



By the year 1975, Jehovah’s Witnesses began to take notice of this clock, publishing its time on a regular basis in an effort to highlight the urgency of the “last days”. This timing was no coincidence, as Watchtower vice-president Frederick Franz had predicted back in 1966 that 1975 would mark the end of 6000 years of mankind’s existence, kicking off the 1000 year reign of Christ. This would mean that 1975 would also bring about God’s personal doomsday, Armageddon.


"Life Everlasting" book prediction of 1975 as the likely onset of Armageddon
“Life Everlasting” book prediction of 1975 as the likely onset of Armageddon


The Doomsday Clock seemed to add weight to these predictions.

The Awake! magazine of February 8, 1975 stated:

ON AUGUST 25, 1974, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved its front-cover “doomsday clock” three minutes closer to midnight. These scientists thus signaled their fear that the threat of nuclear holocaust recently grew by that much, bringing the clock to nine minutes before midnight.

However, those who are aware of the clock’s history know that, since 1947 when the atomic scientists started it ticking, their clock has moved eight times, but in both directions.

Many people believe that the course of history is very similar to that “doomsday clock.” They say that crises come and crises go but somehow mankind always muddles through. Their outlook is just what a discerning prophet 1,900 years ago said it would be: “Why, from the day our forefathers fell asleep in death, all things are continuing exactly as from creation’s beginning.”—2 Pet. 3:4

On the one hand, Witnesses were frightened by the impending doom and ominous nature of the nuclear threat, while simultaneously being told that the vacillation of the clock’s hands proves that mankind is deceived into thinking that the end of the world was not imminent.

The year 1975 came and went without major incident, and this disappointment was devastating to many Jehovah’s Witnesses, causing a radical drop in membership and financial ruin for many who had pinned their hopes on this date.

Amazingly, the Watchtower’s Governing Body brushed aside this theocratic defeat and went right back to disseminating messages of doom for all of the word’s governments, all religions (except JWs), and any person not associated with Jehovah’s Witnesses.


On June 8, 1981, the Awake! magazine excitedly announced that the Doomsday Clock had moved closer to the midnight hour:

BACK IN 1947, atomic scientists concerned about nuclear war invented a “doomsday clock” to dramatize their fears. The clock has since become the best known symbol of the publication “Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.” Should the hands of the clock reach midnight, it will mean that nuclear war has begun.

Recently the position of the hands was set ahead—from seven minutes before midnight to only four minutes to that hour. Quite a jump! The hands have been moved only 10 times in 33 years.

Why do the scientists think the world is now getting closer to nuclear war? Because of the failure of the SALT II arms treaty and because of each side’s stated willingness to fight a “limited” nuclear war.


By 1984, Jehovah’s Witnesses were inundated with articles and books which declared that Armageddon was imminent, citing its infamous “generations” teaching along with fear of global nuclear war.  The March 22 1984 Awake! announced:

The “doomsday clock,” a feature of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, was advanced another minute last January to three minutes before midnight…  The “Bulletin Clock” has been advanced and set back through the years to indicate the intensity of “the threat of nuclear doomsday hovering over humanity.” The present move to three minutes before midnight is the closest in 30 years

The summer of 1984 saw the release of the book “Survival into a New Earth,” generating even more anticipation that the end was extremely close, and once again the clock was mentioned.


Survival Book
Survival into a New Earth, Published in 1984


The final chapter was titled The Countdown Nears its Zero Hour! Note the recycled words from the 1981 Awake!:




If you were one of Jehovah’s Witnesses back in 1984, no doubt chills ran up and down your spine as you read those words. There was no misunderstanding – we were living in the very LAST part of the LAST days, and every Witness knew that the end was imminent. Fred Franz was the living embodiment of the 1914 Generation teaching, using the last few years of his life in a last-gasp attempt to convince millions of Witnesses that Armageddon would arrive before his contemporaries died.


The Survival Book reinforces the “Generation” doctrine



By the end of 1984, the Watchtower organization had taken ownership of their own doomsday timepiece, capitalizing on this concept by featuring a countdown clock on the cover of the October 22nd Awake!  Were they trading on the fear of an imminent nuclear conflict? Judge for yourself:

PROMINENT people in all parts of the world are, indeed, coming to the conclusion that time is running out. The forces that constantly push the nations toward the brink of nuclear war register in their minds like screaming alarm sirens. The danger of global economic collapse and the many forms of deadly environmental pollution add to their uneasiness. They sense that time is running out not just for a few nations but for the entire world. Why? Because none of them can come up with solutions that really work.

Their greatest concern is the threat of nuclear war. Earlier this year, in harmony with the advice of 47 scientists, including 18 Nobel prize winners, the monthly Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved its “doomsday clock” forward one minute—to three minutes before midnight. The clock represents how close they believe the world is to a nuclear conflagration. “It is an expression of alarm,” they state. The “doomsday clock” is now the nearest it has been to midnight in 30 years!


October 22, 1984 Awake Magazine
October 22, 1984 Awake Magazine features its own Doomsday Clock


Unfortunately for the Watchtower organization and loyal Jehovah’s Witnesses, the clock wound down, expiring in yet another embarrassing end-of-times failed prediction. Fred Franz finally passed away in 1992, leaving behind a mountain of Biblical interpretations which would take years for the organization to unravel. Just 3 years after his death, the 1995 Watchtower discarded the previous “Generation” teaching and replaced it with with what they called a more “precise” doctrine.


November 1, 1995 Watchtower discards previous generation teaching
November 1, 1995 Watchtower discards previous generation teaching, claims to have “precise” viewpoint


This 1995 Watchtower article reveals a key contradiction which has plagued the Witness organization since its origin. “Jehovah has revealed to us…” the things which “must shortly take place”, yet Jehovah’s Witnesses have somehow misinterpreted God’s personal revelations dozens of times. Is it really plausible that the Almighty would personally communicate sacred secrets to one religious organization, yet do so inaccurately every time?

Using language such as “terminal ruination”, “critical” and “urgency”, the Governing Body has continued to wield fear as a tool to steer the lives of millions of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and the Doomsday Clock is still mentioned repeatedly in Watchtower and Awake! articles.

Witnesses – Doomsday Prophets?

It is a fallacy and a deception to proclaim that Jehovah’s Witnesses are not doomsday prophets. By most definitions, “doomsday” represents destruction and death, which is EXACTLY what Witnesses preach. However, in an effort to draw individuals into the religion and minimize the damaging portions of the doctrine, the organization describes the very controversial topic of Armageddon and doomsday in a highly conflicting manner. In the May 1st 2015 Watchtower, the organization addressed this topic on page 7:


DOOMSDAY PROPHETS? Jehovah’s Witnesses are not doomsday prophets. They have been sharing a positive message about the future for over one hundred years. For example, their 1958 convention talk, “God’s Kingdom Rules—Is the World’s End Near?” explained that“God’s kingdom comes, not to destroy this earth, but to destroy Satan’s world. God’s kingdom comes, not to burn up this earth, but to bring to pass God’s will here on earth as well
as in heaven. For that reason the earth is worth preserving as God’s creation; and God will preserve it for all eternity.”


The clever strategy mentioned above has been used for decades to divert attention away from the massive decimation of human life by declaring that the Earth will be secure forever and will never face annihilation.  Does the declaration of the Earth’s preservation absolve Jehovah’s Witnesses of the title “Doomsday Prophets”? Hardly.

In the very same 2015 Watchtower, it is later revealed that there WILL be significant loss of life:

The Bible informs us that the end will involve destruction:
“There will be great tribulation such as has not occurred since the world’s beginning until now . . . In fact, unless those days were cut short, no flesh would be saved.” (Matthew 24:21,22) But God promises us that many humans will survive: “The world is passing away . . . , but the one who does the will of God remains forever.”…
The context shows that “all these things” that are to be dissolved include the ruling elements of this corrupt world and all those who choose such rulership rather than God’s.

Rather than following the majority today and ignoring the clear signals that we are living in such important times, we need to “keep close in mind the presence of the day of Jehovah.” Jehovah’s Witnesses can show you from the Bible how
you can be a survivor of this upcoming day

(bold added by editor)

The claim that “many” will survive Armageddon belies the actual  JW teaching that MOST will be destroyed – billions of humans eliminated at God’s hand. The implication is clear – unless you are in close association with Jehovah’s Witnesses come judgment day, you will die.

Coming to grips with this conflict is a matter most Witnesses seldom discuss. When they do talk about Armageddon, the official Watchtower policy is often replaced with a more palatable line, something like “Well, Jehovah can read the heart of the individual, and HE makes the final judgment…”

As of January 2016, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists continues to place its clock at 3 minutes before midnight, right back where it was in 1984. Jehovah’s Witnesses will no doubt continue to exploit the rational fears of their members, and exchange this fear for an Apocalypse where they find themselves on the safe side of the fence.

On a personal level, the Watchtower’s emphasis on mankind’s impending doom deeply impacted my life. I was baptized in 1984 while attending high school, completely immersed in the belief that all of the collective “signs” pointed to the imminent day of God’s anger, Armageddon. Looking back on it, I didn’t know any better, just as the kids 10 years older than me were taken in by the 1975 prediction.

Perhaps the most important reason I was finally able to escape nearly 40 years later was my reflection on the repeating cycles I observed over my lifetime inside the organization. It went something like this:


Not only did I see these repeating patterns for more than 40 years, the real wake-up call was understanding how the latest doctrines were being injected into the minds of the next generation at younger and younger ages. I watched so many teens raise their hands at the Kingdom Hall and recite the current doctrine during the Watchtower Study, believing that they are devouring “spiritual meat”, when in fact so much of what they currently believe is likely to end up in the growing landfill with all of the discarded Watchtower publications.


Watchtower teachings come with an expiration date
Watchtower teachings come with an expiration date


Reflecting on the Watchtower’s use of the Doomsday Clock along with other end-of-the-world predictions might seem academic, but if you are still one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, understanding and escaping the undue influence of this organization might just give you back your life. Check the clock – you still have time.


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: 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 and other outlets.

250 thoughts on “Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Doomsday Clock

  • January 31, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    I think “The Judge” may be onto us (Resistance / Fifth Column):

    “Judge Rutherford Uncovers Fifth Column,” by Judge Rutherford (1940). Published June, 1940 and copyright was not renewed. J.F. Rutherford outlines his view that the Catholic Hierarchy are “attempting to grab control of the nations of the earth.” (pages 5 and 6) Rutherford was president of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society (Jehovah’s Witnesses).

    • January 31, 2016 at 2:08 pm

      Wowwwww – Musta been sommmmme kinda Genius!!!
      He ACTUALLY figured out the Catholic Church was attempting to control nations! & as EARLY as 1940! What would we do without the “Faithful & Discreet Slave”???

    • February 1, 2016 at 5:27 pm

      Ah all the weapons the hierarchy had hidden, ready to overthrow the nations…. Is there a copy of this anywhere? I can only find snippets.

      • February 2, 2016 at 3:02 pm

        No idea. I just stumbled onto it.

        • February 2, 2016 at 9:08 pm

          Do a bit more stumbling then… chop, chop.

  • January 31, 2016 at 2:16 pm

    “Do not fear the Haters. Fear the mobs that follow them.”
    “Do not think of failure, & you will succeed.”
    & my all-time favorite, succinct & to-the-point, the motto of the British SAS: “Who dares wins”

  • January 31, 2016 at 2:25 pm

  • January 31, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    Special Air Service

    Special Air Service badge

  • January 31, 2016 at 2:58 pm

    The JW Bacon has expired. Time to give the bacon back to the butcher. Beautiful picture of the expiration date on package of meat. Very fitting.

    • January 31, 2016 at 5:46 pm

      Did u mean the JW Bacon or Beacon? LOL Of course, the Watchtower’s Beacon went out a long time ago.

  • January 31, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Just had an eye-opening convo with Mom, a hardcore JW who still talks to me for some bizarre reason. Maybe ’cause I’m such an awesome dude. LOL Seriously, though, I’m a pretty horrible person. No one should talk to me. EVER. Anyway, back to my point. So, as usual, the convo revolved around the innocuous subject of Current Events, &, as usual, she brings up “Armageddon”. But this time, I agree with her. I say that many people (myself included) do in fact believe that this “system” is nearing its “end”. That seemed to shock her. I don’t think Jehovah’s Witnesses really want this system to end. Hell, for all I know, they could be running the damned thing!!! I’ve kinda seen this B4. JW’s seem to be more frightened of “Armageddon” than anyone else I know!! They seem to enjoy playing the role of “Chicken Little”, running around announcing, “The sky is falling”, for its shock value, then cozying into the coffee shops for a Latte & a good laugh. They LIKE this corrupt system. They’re certainly making the most of it. They LIKE going door-to-door. They LIKE the coffee breaks (most of all). They LIKE the Social Club. Next time u talk to a Witness, conduct a little experiment. See if u can make them p*ss their pants by declaring that “The End” (or “Armageddon” or whatever) is SURE to come within 6 months MAX, like u REALLY mean it. Watch their reaction. U may be surprised.

  • January 31, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Just happened to be Googling Chuck Norris. Found this really worthwhile & uplifting Code for his Martial Art, Chun Kuk Do (“The Universal Way”):

    Like many other martial arts, Chun Kuk Do includes a code of honor and rules to live by. These rules are from Chuck Norris’ personal code. They are:[4]

    I will develop to the maximum of my potential.
    I will forget the mistakes of the past, and press on to greater achievements.
    I will continually work at developing love, happiness, and loyalty to my family.
    I will look for the good in everyone, and make them feel worthwhile.
    If I have nothing good to say about a person, I will say nothing.
    I will always be as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
    I will maintain an attitude of open-mindedness.
    I will maintain respect for those in authority, and demonstrate this respect at all times.
    I will always remain loyal to my God, my country, my family, and my friends.
    I will remain highly goal-oriented throughout my life; a positive attitude helps my family, my country and myself.

    • January 31, 2016 at 7:11 pm

      PS Don’t be dissuaded by the fact that there are EXACTLY 10. lol

      • January 31, 2016 at 7:14 pm

        The New 10 Commandments? Whaddya say??
        How ’bout The 10 Recommendations? Less intrusive.

        • January 31, 2016 at 8:59 pm

          Great set of standards. Chuck Norris is awesome. Sometime do a search on YouTube for “Hitler finds out Chuck Norris is coming.” Or I’ll find it and add the link in the morning. Night all.


          • January 31, 2016 at 10:45 pm

            OMG!!! I have seen ALL of the “Hitler Rants” videos! Totally whack!
            Not to mention the Chuck Norris jokes. Just Google Chuck Norris Facts.

          • January 31, 2016 at 10:55 pm

            …Jesus Christ may be able to walk on water, but Chuck Norris can swim through land.
            Chuck Norris & Superman once fought on a bet. The loser had to start wearing his underwear on the outside.
            When the Bogeyman goes to bed at nite, he checks his closet for Chuck Norris.

          • January 31, 2016 at 11:05 pm

            A man is talking to God. “God, how long is a million years?” God answers, “To me, it’s about a minute.” “God, how much is a million dollars?” “To me, it’s a penny.” “God, may I have a penny?” “Wait a minute.”

          • February 1, 2016 at 4:42 pm

            My dilemma EXACTLY

    • February 1, 2016 at 3:37 pm

      great episode, great message

      • February 1, 2016 at 4:58 pm

        Just watched it again & noticed something. The Professor says that “without guidance [the new religion] will deteriorate into inquisitions, holy wars, chaos.”
        LOL — Looking at our own history, even WITH guidance, religions have routinely deteriorated into inquisitions, holy wars, &chaos!!!
        — We’re talking “guidance” up the wazoo! Commandments, regulations, rituals, leaders, popes, overseers, governing bodies, “holy” books, rule books, manuals, etc, etc, etc, & things go South ANYWAY!!!
        Maybe the answer is Not so much Godd*mned Micromanagement.

  • February 1, 2016 at 6:19 am

    Was just called an apostate in my home by a friendly watchtower disciple, had to inform him that Jesus and Paul were also apostates in their time, thank you for all the support on this site, it is priceless.

    • February 1, 2016 at 6:31 am

      How rude. These people have no respect for others. Your home is your sanctuary. They need to act like respectful guests. But they are so full of their own self importance that they feel they can ignore basic human decency.

      (I am, of course, drawing the conclusion that this was a visitor and not a family member)

      Sorry to hear that you had to go through this. But glad you were able to give an answer to their accusations.


      • February 1, 2016 at 8:26 am

        Hi – along these same lines. A while back my parents, very active JW’s, father an elder, were visiting our home. I, disassociated for a long time, my husband never a JW but tolerant if not preached to. A couple of JW’s who knew my parents very well were passing by and noticed my parents’ car and knocked to ask if they could come in to see them. In their time they had been special pioneers but gone on to have family they were proud of because they gave all to Jehovah.
        After accepting our hospitality for a good hour they prepared to leave. It was me who saw them to the door and as they were leaving I said maybe I would see them around the neighbourhood, as you do. However, as they walked away the sister said to me ‘not if armageddon comes first because you’ll be dead’! I was too taken aback to give a fitting response!
        It’s so hard not to be bitter with these arrogant people and their air of superiority. I now feel pity for that particular sister. Her husband has since, very sadly, died. Her family disfellowshipped, I assume by their lifestyles for immorality. But hey, who do you think is the happy one – me, balanced, free life with great family and real friends, or her.
        What pathetic lives these people have.

        • February 1, 2016 at 10:14 am

          The principle that ‘you reap what you sow’ tends to hold true no matter what your take is on the scriptures. The folks I recall being the most judgemental and holier than thou always seemed to end up the worse off in the end.


          • February 1, 2016 at 2:53 pm

            God they are so rude! That is just so tacky to say any of that. What Bogans!!!

          • February 1, 2016 at 3:57 pm


            They obviously haven’t heard the song R-E-S-P-E-C-T.
            BTW, do u think they would use that kind of language with a member of the public? Nooooooot Bloody Likely!!!
            -though I do remember an old, old story from my youth: A lady in our Cong knew of a sister who got in a heated debate with someone at the door. As she walked away, she yelled back, “Your blood will be on this sidewalk at Armageddon!!!” LOL But I would say that was an exception to their usual “nice” behavior.

  • February 1, 2016 at 8:33 am

    It is interesting to ask the Witnesses what they believe about the teachings of their founder Charles Taze Russell who died 100 years ago. They no longer believe much of his teaching. Then ask what do you think he would say about their current beliefs? (No doubt he would describe them as apostate.) Whilst knowledge and understanding changes, truth does not.

    • February 1, 2016 at 12:20 pm

      James B., My sister says the society teaches Russell is in heaven so he knows what is being taught today and he smiles on them. She says it’s great they shed so much new light recently. That’s Gullible and dumb.

      • February 1, 2016 at 12:56 pm

        How about C.T.R’s wife Mary is she in heaven?

        • February 1, 2016 at 1:06 pm

          For that matter how about Rutherford’s wife is she in heaven also? If so did she forgive the judge for exile into oblivion, into a little house in L.A. while he partied like Hugh Hefner in the original playboy mansion in San Diego?

      • February 1, 2016 at 4:06 pm

        Then again, instead of smiling, Russell could be tearing his hair out. After all, he can see us, but we can’t see him, right? Alexandria, u should tell ur sister that. lol

  • February 1, 2016 at 9:51 am

    Hello Average Joe, I have a go-bag story for you, I was tied up with congregation responalblitys over the weekend so it a while to get back here…anyway, a few years ago when go-bags where all the rage. A brother and his wife go and get decked out with all the goods..pack, sleeping bag, tent, stove,.water purifier, …..then begin wondering if they are physically fit to use them,,well he talks another brother into a little test, a day trip maybe 1 mile in and back….turns out it was a little too much and He barely makes it out after the second bro. Had to ferry all the gear out himself then physically assists the first brother out. Sooo if the GT. Is less then 8 hours long and occurs on a gorgeous summer day and the escape hike is less then 1.5 miles these go packs might just be the hot ticket.

    • February 1, 2016 at 4:10 pm

      Probably a victim of Hollywood. Everything looks sooooo easy in the movies!

    • February 2, 2016 at 5:39 am

      @pow! What is this Go-bag a lot of you refer to? I am a 20 plus year fader but my wife is an Super Duper believe all JW pioneer and Metro “Apple Cart” pusher. I saw reference to it and asked her about iot but did not get a clear answer. Funny, I never heard much about it at all. Is there anything in writing about it in the WT? Were they pushing the go-bag everywhere or just a few places?

      • February 2, 2016 at 7:50 am

        We had talks on it and have an actual cong. file given to all minions with info on what to store, pack and do in the ‘event’ of the ‘event’…. This was put together in 2013 and contains emergency phone numbers for certain ones in the hall, Steps for all publishers to take in preparation. It goes on to list what is needed in an emergency supply kit, what to have in your car at all times. We are told to take a first aid course, what foods to pack for at least three days, how much water to have on standby, communication knowledge.

        WT 2011 Dec. 1 pp 6-7 Coping with Natural Disasters is included.
        Awake 1996 June 22 p 17.
        WT 11 12/1 pp. 6 -7.
        Awake 9/07 pp. 4-7…. Is God responsible?

        It is also full of pamphlets on what to do in a local natural disaster.

        This was issued I believe, to all in BC.

        • February 2, 2016 at 3:19 pm

          I can’t wait for the Weapons Training!!! LOL Sorry, too much coffee.
          PS For anyone interested in this stuff, I recommend these shows:
          Man vs Wild (with Bear Grylls (ex-SAS))
          Surviving Disaster (with Cade Courtley (ex-SEAL))
          & The SAS Survival Handbook by John Wiseman
          -covering EVERYTHING, incl. nuclear attack, terror attack, chemical/bio disasters, outdoor survival (obviously), AND the best goodies to pack in ur Kit.

          • February 2, 2016 at 3:26 pm

            Worst-Case Scenario with Bear Grylls.
            …Sorry though, nothing about Alien Invasion or Zombie Apocalypse. If that happens, looks like we’re on our own.

          • February 2, 2016 at 9:11 pm

            You missed Who Dares Wins with Lewis Collins. Bravo Two Zero with Sean Bean…..

          • February 3, 2016 at 8:04 am

            Did Sean Bean play Boromir in LOTR?


          • February 3, 2016 at 2:07 pm

            Yes he did and yes he died.

          • February 3, 2016 at 7:08 pm

            Boromir died, not the actor Sean Bean, right?

            Faramir became prince of Ithillien and wedded Eowyn of Rohan.


          • February 4, 2016 at 8:03 am

            No the real Sean Bean is alive and kicking and yes, about Faramir :)

        • February 2, 2016 at 8:58 pm

          If my brain’s memory’s chronology is correct, the WT Snakes were just piggybacking on advice already put out by Federal governments, & trying to take some of the glory. I’m pretty sure the GoBag recommendation was put out by the govts 1st, perhaps as a reaction to Katrina, or Terrorism.

          • February 2, 2016 at 9:07 pm

            I remember an elder smugly declaring from the platform, “Don’t worry, if something happens, we’ll take care of you.” Seriously??? I pictured the COBE flying a Search-&-Rescue helicopter to my residence, & this pasty little idiot rappelling down to dig me out of the rubble. LMFAO What a joke!!!

          • February 3, 2016 at 11:38 am

            Right, so when we reach Def con 4, we can hid under our school desks, or head into the wilderness to live like jeriamiah johnson but, instead of fighting Indians we’ll be fighting mad survivalist. Hey, this is a great movie plot. Think pacifist jw turns Rambo…

          • February 3, 2016 at 12:47 pm

            Your movie plot idea reminds me of a documentary where they interviewed US veteran of WWII. He had been raised baptist and taught that killing was wrong. Shortly after he was stationed overseas (Philippines I beleive) he and another soldier were attacked in an air raid. They were hiding out in a ditch when one of the enemy pilots came back for a strafing run. Shot the soldier next to him to pieces and he could see the pilot smiling and laughing while doing it. Said he didn’t see much of a problem with killing after that.

            Pacifism is usually situational. Put someone in the right circumstances and they can become a cold blooded killer. Survival instinct.


          • February 3, 2016 at 12:53 pm

            Read Between the lines and the elder’s promise seems to state ‘Don’t worry BIG BROTHER will take care of you.’


          • February 3, 2016 at 7:15 pm

            lol Good one.
            PS I agree, there’s no such animal as a Pacifist. Usually just a convenient way to get someone ELSE to do the fighting, then reap the benefits. Kinda like Hollywood. Reminds me of a South Park episode showing how there’s always 1 group pro-war, & 1 group anti-war. That way the U.S. (or whoever) can make war at will, while still seeming to have a “conscience”, always appearing as the “Good Guys” who make war, but feel “bad” about it. Like I said, anyone who believes in Pacifists may as well believe in Unicorns. lol

          • February 3, 2016 at 7:41 pm

            @ POW
            I like ur movie idea. “Watchtower” in 1 hand, AK47 in the other. lol BTW Interesting coincidink – last nite, I watched a movie about a Priest (Baptist Minister or something) in the ’60s, who came home, found wifey doing the nasty with another dude, and shot them both. Got off, though, ’cause it was a “crime of passion” or whatever. What to do now? Well, he joined the Marines, went to Vietnam, & really did become a cold-blooded killer – a good 1 – became a Sergeant or something – led a fragmented, lost unit on 1 particular difficult & dangerous mission. Sorry, can’t provide the title, only caught it about halfway thru. But at the end was a write-up for each surviving character, what they did after the war, so I guess it was a true story. Looks like someone beat u to the punch. lol

  • February 1, 2016 at 12:27 pm

    The reason JWs believe the overlapping generation teaching and believed the doomsday prediction dates given in the past is because the society is good at getting people to ignore their own personal boundaries. That’s how they lose their critical thinking skills.

    • February 1, 2016 at 4:19 pm

      Good point. It’s not a collection of individuals. It’s just a big glob. That’s what happens when boundaries disintegrate. THE BORG

  • February 1, 2016 at 4:24 pm

    Here’s an interesting quote by Dave Allen illustrating the 2-Faced nature of charlatans like the WT Snakes

    Religious views[edit]
    He was a religious sceptic[1] (according to Allen, “what you might call a practising atheist”, and often joked, “I’m an atheist, thank God”) as a result of his deeply held objections to the rigidity of his strict Catholic schooling. Consequently, religion became an important subject for his humour, especially the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of England, generally mocking church customs and rituals rather than beliefs. In 1998 he explained:

    “The hierarchy of everything in my life has always bothered me. I’m bothered by power. People, whoever they might be, whether it’s the government, or the policeman in the uniform, or the man on the door – they still irk me a bit. From school, from the first nun that belted me – people used to think of the nice sweet little ladies … they used to knock the fuck out of you, in the most cruel way that they could. They’d find bits of your body that were vulnerable to intense pain – grabbing you by the ear, or by the nose, and lift you, and say ‘Don’t cry!’ It’s very hard not to cry. I mean, not from emotion, but pain. The priests were the same. And I sit and watch politicians with great cynicism, total cynicism.”
    At the end of his act, Allen always raised his glass and quietly toasted his audience with the words “Goodnight, thank you, and may your God go with you,”[2] an original and inclusive catchphrase that typified Allen’s amiable style.

    • February 1, 2016 at 4:34 pm

      Another 1 of his jokes I like is: “God must love Atheists. We never ask Him for anything.”

      • February 1, 2016 at 6:13 pm

        I love Dave Allen. I loved his joke about the mother superior who got up on the wrong side of the bed. A nun asked her Mother superior, did you get up from the wrong side of the bed this morning? Mother superior says No my child, why do you ask? The nun answered, “Because I was wondering why you’re wearing the bishop’s shoes.” I love that joke.

  • February 1, 2016 at 6:15 pm

    Great article John –
    I remember 1984, it was the year I got baptised.
    The Survival Book, the Doomsday clock, yes, it brings it all back.
    The evidence seemed convincing enough then, no wonder I wanted to jump in the pool. I really thought we were all doomed!!
    If only there had been the internet, if only there had been JW Survey! We may have been saved from the cult. At least this generation has the ability to check things out.
    You only get one shot at life, I have spent thirty years in ‘spiritual imprisonment’ – you get less for murder! Now my shoulders are crippled up with arthritis – probably due to carrying heavy book bags around, and the future is not looking so bright. I hate Watchtower for telling me lies.

    • February 3, 2016 at 6:02 am

      Hi Penny,

      Enjoy your freedom. Wishing you boundless blessings in this new phase of your journey.

      • February 4, 2016 at 5:23 pm

        Thanks kittycat –
        I’m still waiting for the boundless blessings. Freedom from the WT is good, the problem is the void left in my life from lack of friends. I always thought we would have friends forever in the cult. Now we are shunned. This is why it is so good to have JW Survey to talk to unknown friends who are in the same boat. Just wish we could all meet up for a coffee and hugs!

  • February 1, 2016 at 8:44 pm

    Public ignorance of the bible is phenomenal. I mean, most people know the basics – Adam & Eve & Satan the talking snake, Noah, & Moses. I remember as a kid, watching Cecil B. DeMille’s classic The Ten Commandments, & being quite impressed. I believe the closing scene portrayed Moses (Charlton Heston, who also did the voice of “Yahweh”, btw) gazing past the Jordan into the “promised land”. Too bad they didn’t tell u what happened AFTER the Israelites crossed the Jordan. Like in a sequel — The Ten Commandments II – The Ten Genocides. No films were made about all the hacking, piercing, massacring, pillaging, burning, & baby-killing that went on on the OTHER side of the Jordan River. Convenient. All those accounts r snugly buried within the bowels of the Old Testament, where none but the devout care to peruse.

    • February 2, 2016 at 12:02 pm

      I think the world outside the JWs is more sensitive to such atrocities, so they intentionally leave that kind of stuff out. They especially don’t want to frighten or expose the children to it. The Watchtower puts it all right in their children’s textbook with all the gory details (they do clean it up somewhat – Shechem forced Dinah to lie down with him rather raped or violated her).

      Most non-JWs are content with the basics and don’t do much more in depth study. A few do. So I guess that’s something good about their org: you do know the scripture well, even if it is with their specific JW slant.


  • February 1, 2016 at 11:11 pm

    Speaking of Doomsday, I just watched Spaced Invaders (1990) on youtube. TERRIFYING. lol

    • February 2, 2016 at 7:53 am

      I watched the X FILES……..

    • February 2, 2016 at 5:05 pm

      That’s My kind of movie. It’s great.

  • February 3, 2016 at 9:24 am

    I remember when there was a talk with “new light” at an assembly or an article in the watchtower and then afterwards the phones would start ringing and people would be calling each other talking about the new light and new understanding and remarking about how exciting this all was.

    I guess the many witnesses just live for the hype and for any shred of news as to when armaghedon will come as dictated by the seven men in brooklyn.

    Faith and trust not in God or the Bible, but blind faith in seven imperfect men. And it appears that the seven imperfect men are more than happy to keep feeding the rank and file with new light, new understanding.

    • February 3, 2016 at 7:23 pm

      Reminds me of all the idiots who go on Twitter to see what Angelina Jolie had for breakfast, or what Brad Pitt’s morning bowel movement looked like. lol

  • February 3, 2016 at 11:13 am

    The way the org is tapping in on the youth does not spell
    Consistent with the doomsday clock. After all, have you
    Seen the new music video??? Totally designed to target
    The youthful set. I am in my sixties and already that age
    Group has been sent out to pasture.

    • February 3, 2016 at 7:24 pm

      The WT Vampires seek fresh blood.

      • February 3, 2016 at 7:26 pm

        So, not only sexists, but also ageists.

  • February 3, 2016 at 5:07 pm

    If I see that logo pushed at me one more time at the kh I will start armagetton.! Note to all awakers still attending kigdumb hell February Our Christian life cut out and keep pamphlet. Count how many times in that mag you find the word kingdom (clue….none). So remind me again what jdubs are supposed to announce because I can’t find a mention for this month.. ruthlee

    • February 3, 2016 at 7:29 pm

      Maybe more New Light — Changing nomenclature from Kingdom to Happy Panda Land.

      • February 4, 2016 at 9:34 am

        The frequent Ex-JW recollections about the pandas reminds me of George Carlin’s gripe about all the news coverage about panda procreation at zoos. It’s found in his book Napalm and Silly Putty. I couldn’t find a postable link, but I think you can find it on google books.

        His comment is something to the effect: ‘Do you give a care if the pandas f**k? I have no emotional stake in panda f**king.’

        For me, this tirade is a good way to mentally replace any residual JW indoctrination about playing with pandas. It’s what comes to mind when I hear something about pandas, rather than some old cult image implanted during childhood. For those who prefer more of a G-rated replacement aid, consider watching the movie Kung fu panda.


        • February 4, 2016 at 4:54 pm

          George Carlin was a genius.
          I think I finally got those godd*mned pandas out of my head. Aaaaaargggghh. “Victory is mine!”
          Though, let me emphasize, I have nothing whatsoever against pandas personally. They’re fine animals. I, in fact, have never had a bad experience with a panda. We all need to love the panda. OK, may have exhausted this topic. Preparing for the next Friday Column. :)

  • February 4, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Exhausted, i feel the same, everything now is being geared up for the youth, i am now in my 50’s & even though i don’t care feel being left out, i guess they have to change to attract the new blood, recall back to the 70-80’s they used to be critical of TV evangelists, modern music, & so on,i recall talks telling us that using a lap top was not loving because you will distract others, the times they are a changing, as i have stated before, i see a lot of old deluded unhappy people, when did they say “Millions now living will never die”? well my parents are gone & i find myself on the wrong side of 50

    • February 4, 2016 at 5:45 pm

      Wip it – I agree with you.
      It seems like a totally different scenario to when I was in. They do seem to be targeting the young – the next generation of mind blown youth.
      I spoke to a young witness by his trolley a few months ago. When I mentioned a scripture to check he produced his ipad! ‘Where’s your Bible?’ I asked. ‘I always use this now,’ he said.
      Seems the ‘holy spirit’ flows through a different channel nowadays. Seems they don’t mind ‘the spirit of the world’ flowing through at the same time!

      • February 5, 2016 at 1:39 am

        On your point Wip it and Bad penny at the meetings there is not usually enough time to actually look up the scripture before it is read as people use their tablets etc which are lightning quick. So 1 of 2 things you either rush to find the script or don’t bother. What I think this does is that you lose the “feel” of handling the Bible it becomes just another e book. Also there will be a generation who won’t know where the Bible books are in situ. but then again they don’t read it so who cares! ruthlee

        • February 11, 2016 at 8:17 pm

          I noticed this too–now having ebooks is not a bad thing for older folks who “get with the times”. And, I happen to know that being 50+ is about the age of most of the Silicon Valley founders who brought us these new i-this and e-that fangled devices. So, I see nothing wrong with being 50+ except maybe attitude.

          But, I do sense that younger types will lose the experience of developing a cold sweat as Farmer Brown steadies his cocked and loaded shotgun at you as you flip fiendishly to reach common ground on the point of “trust” and “neighborly love” flying out the window. “Well, I reckon you all-un can c’mon inside” Sheepishly grinning, “Well, thank you Farmer Brown–we can certainly understand your need for caution in these dangerous times we live, but did you know there’s a time coming when–” “Y’all want a seat down?” “No, no, Farmer Brown, I’ll stand” (flies buzzing around back of pants)

          Farmer Brown, me and the Apocalypse…and a new pair of pants..

  • February 4, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    A 2010 survey of Americans conducted by the Pew Research Center for People and the Press
    found that 41 per cent of all Americans 18 years of age and over (i.e. around 95 million) believe that the Second Coming of Christ will occur by 2050, while 46 per cent do not. Among Christians, 58 per cent of Evangelicals believe this will happen, as do 27 per cent of mainline Protestants, and 32 per cent of Roman Catholics. Even 20 per cent of the denominationally unaffiliated believe this too.

    The following article provides an interesting perspective on the validity of Paul’s and Jesus’ prophecies regarding the end of the world (see second half of the article):

    • February 5, 2016 at 6:41 am

      If Paul’s and Jesus’ end of the world prophecies are taken at face value, it is clear that they were expecting the world to end during their lifetimes. However, when this didn’t happen, rationalizations were put forth that Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled or that he was prophesizing about the distant future.

      • February 5, 2016 at 10:17 am

        *****”prophesying” not “prophesizing”

  • February 4, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    The book: “Jesus – Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium” by Bart D. Ehrman also offers an interesting perspective on the validity of Jesus’ end of the world prophecies:

    One of the points made by this book is that “apocalypticism” was the order of the day at the time Jesus is said to have existed because of the history of the Promised Land. Jews in Palestine had been under direct foreign domination for most of the eight centuries prior to the time it is said Jesus was born. The Promised Land was conquered in succession by the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Persians, the Greeks, the Syrians, and the Romans. Jews resented the idea that they were answerable to a foreign power. They were, after all, the chosen people of the one true God of Israel, the God who had agreed to protect and defend them in exchange for their devotion. This was the land that he had promised them, and for many of them it must have been more than a little distressing, both politically and religiously, to know that ultimately someone else was in charge.

    There was the belief that there would be an imminent intervention of God on behalf of his people, an intervention to be modeled on earlier acts of salvation as recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures. Quite soon, God would reassert himself and bring this world back to himself, destroying the forces of evil and establishing his people as rulers over the earth. When this new Kingdom came, God would fulfil his promises to his people. This point of view, commonly called “apocalypticism”, was an ideology that tried to make sense of the oppression of the people of God. Jewish apocalyptic thought was evident in a number of writings both in the Hebrew Bible (e.g. book of Daniel) and from other sources.

    Some of the earliest traditions about Jesus portray him as a Jewish apocalypticist who responded to the political and social crises of his day, including the domination of his nation by a foreign power, by proclaiming that his generation was living at the end of the age, that God would soon intervene on behalf of his people, sending a cosmic judge from heaven, the Son of Man who would destroy the forces of evil and set up God’s Kingdom. In preparation for his coming, the people of Israel needed to turn to God, trusting him as a kindly parent and loving one another as his special children. Those who refused to accept this message would be liable to the judgment of God, soon to arrive with the coming of the Son of Man.

    • February 4, 2016 at 6:58 pm

      The book: “Jesus – Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium” by Bart D. Ehrman, also makes the point that the earliest sources such as Mark and Matthew record Jesus as propounding an apocalyptic message – predictions of the coming judgment, of the imminent arrival of the Son of Man, of the future Kingdom on earth – and these pronouncements need to be taken seriously. Interestingly, however, this message begins to be muted by the end of the first century (e.g., in Luke), until it virtually disappears (e.g., in John) – by the time we get to John, the last of the gospels to be written, Jesus is now saying: “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:17).

      It appears that when the end never did arrive, Christians had to take stock of the fact that Jesus said it would and changed his message accordingly.

      • February 4, 2016 at 7:39 pm

        *****It appears that when the end never did arrive during the generation of his listeners as Jesus said it would (Mark 13:30), Christians had to take stock of the fact that Jesus said it would and changed his message accordingly.

  • February 4, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    Whereas the theological end of the world is in doubt, the true end of the world will happen naturally. Natural ways in which the world could end:

    – Asteroid collision (an asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs and many other species about 65 million years ago)

    – Death of the sun due to the natural processes in the sun

Comments are closed.