Jehovah's Witness doctrine is not from the Bible alone

by Matt Slick

Many Jehovah's Witnesses will tell you that they derive their doctrines from the Bible and only from the Bible.  In reality, they derive their doctrines from what the Watchtower says about the Bible.   Following are various quotes that demonstrate this fact.

  1. If the Witness says he learns his theology by reading the Bible alone, then he contradicts the Watchtower which says that is not possible:
    1. "Let us face the fact that no matter how much Bible reading we have done, we would never have learned the truth on our own. We would not have discovered the truth regarding Jehovah, his purposes and attributes, the meaning and importance of his name, the Kingdom, Jesus' ransom, the difference between God's organization and Satan's, nor why God has permitted wickedness," (Watchtower, Dec. 1, 1990, p. 19).
    2. "Thus the Bible is an organizational book and belongs to the Christian congregation as an organization, not to individuals, regardless of how sincerely they may believe that they can interpret the Bible," (Watchtower, Oct. 1, 1967, p. 587).
  2. Additionally, the Watchtower says only its organization understands the Bible
    1. "Only this organization functions for Jehovah's purpose and to his praise. To it alone God's Sacred Word, the Bible, is not a sealed book," (Watchtower, July 1, 1973, p. 402).
    2. "All who want to understand the Bible should appreciate that the "greatly diversified wisdom of God" can become known only through Jehovah's channel of communication, the faithful and discreet slave," (Watchtower, Oct. 1, 1994, p. 8).
  3. Therefore, whatever argument the JW offers is not from their understanding of the Bible but from the Watchtower's interpretation of it.
    1. Can the Watchtower be trusted and especially since it has made false prophecies?  
      1. " . . . the 'battle of the great day of God Almighty' (Revelation 16:14), which will end in A.D. 1914 with the complete overthrow of earth's present rulership, is already commenced," (The Time Is at Hand, 1908 edition, p. 101).
      2. "The date 1925 is even more distinctly indicated by the Scriptures than 1914," (Watchtower, Sept. 1, 1922, p. 262).
      3. "Our thought is, that 1925 is definitely settled by the Scriptures. As to Noah, the Christian now has much more upon which to base his faith than Noah had upon which to base his faith in a coming deluge," (Watchtower, Apr. 1, 1923, p. 106).
      4. "Receiving the gift, the marching children clasped it to them, not a toy or plaything for idle pleasure, but the Lord's provided instrument for most effective work in the remaining months before Armageddon," (Watchtower, Sept. 15, 1941, p. 288).
      5. "There was a measure of disappointment on the part of Jehovah's faithful ones on earth concerning the years 1917, 1918, and 1925, which disappointment lasted for a time . . . and they also learned to quit fixing dates," (Vindication, p. 338).
      6. "Why are you looking forward to 1975?" (Watchtower,  Aug. 15, 1968, p. 494).
  4. The Watchtower says if you read the Bible alone, you'll become a Trinitarian.
    1. "From time to time, there have arisen from among the ranks of Jehovah's people those, who, like the original Satan, have adopted an independent, faultfinding attitude . . . They say that it is sufficient to read the Bible exclusively, either alone or in small groups at home. But, strangely, through such ï'Bible reading,' they have reverted right back to the apostate doctrines that commentaries by Christendom's clergy were teaching 100 years ago . . . " (Watchtower, Aug. 15, 1981).
    2. What are the apostate doctrines of 100 years ago?  Why, the Trinity of course.

Obviously, the Watchtower organization tells its members what to believe.  From the last quote, we can clearly see that the Bible teaches Trinitarianism since that is what we would conclude if we simply read the Bible without the Watchtower guiding our thoughts.





About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.