If you are new to the blog, this is a continuing series I am doing on witnessing to the Jehovah’s Witnesses. You can find Part One here, and Part Two here. And here is Part Four. Today let’s look at one specific doctrinal difference that you need to bring up when witnessing to the Witnesses, at very least to try and get them to more closely examine what they are being taught.
There are so many differences between Christian doctrine and Watchtower doctrine, that it can feel a little overwhelming to try and list everything in a blog series, at least in a thoughtful, precise way. Having never belonged to the organization and never even having set foot in a Kingdom Hall, I realize the weight of importance I need to place on correctly understanding their presuppositions and beliefs so that I can correctly show these many differences.
For this post I would like to focus on just one very important difference, and that is the role of Jesus Christ as mediator. As I have mentioned previously, Witnesses do not see the bulk of the New Testament as applying to them. They believe (rightly) that it only applies to those who are born again. The error is that they believe only the 144,000 are born again, and that they can only gain some benefit from this by being associated with them through the organization. Therefore, naturally, the Watchtower teaches that Christ is the mediator for only the 144,000. This keeps their teachings on the subject consistent (at least), but has huge implications.
In talking with other Christians who have been witnessing to the Witnesses at their conferences, it appears that many Witnesses have not directly dealt with this specific WT teaching. Some of them will claim that Jesus is their mediator. But if they take the time to research what the organization teaches on this specific topic, they will find this is not the case. Nor could it be since they know that they are not born again.
If you don’t examine this carefully you may miss how vital this difference is. Witnesses have no mediator. In fact, it looks like what the Watchtower teaches basically makes the 144,000 into mediators for the “great multitude” of Witnesses. But the Bible tells us there is one mediator, not 144,000. This is falling into an error that Catholics often do (for instance) with Mary and even the Pope. It is a false teaching that attempts to strip Christ of His glory, and leaves followers to hopelessly depend on fallen human beings for their ultimate salvation. It is very much a false gospel.
I recently saw this little video that shares some of the differences between Christian and Watchtower doctrine. It’s a shame he didn’t list the appropriate Bible verses with each point. None the less, his statements are accurate and worth considering. I wanted to share it here because his points culminate with the major issue of who Jesus is the mediator for.
There is much more to discuss regarding the person of Jesus. I want to focus more on other topics such as heaven and hell, and the Holy Spirit in future posts. But the degree that the Watchtower has warped Witnesses’ views of Christ requires much more attention as well.
As always, if you have comments or questions, please use the comment section below.