As I mentioned last week, the figurative fallacy means “either (1) mistaking literal language for figurative language or (2) mistaking figurative language for literal language.”
There I looked at how the Watchtower, in its 1917 book, The Finished Mystery, made this error and came up with a now-abandoned teaching about there being four degrees of salvation, a doctrine which Jehovah’s Witnesses today would consider both wrong and fanciful.
Today, I want to look at how the Watchtower makes a similar mistake when interpreting Jesus’ account of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31). Continue reading
The Watchtower teaches that some people will be resurrected while others will not.
Not willing to leave it at that, the Watchtower has taken upon itself to specify what will happen with regard to specific people in Scripture, such as Adam and Eve and the people of Sodom and Gomorrah whom God destroyed.
The problem is that the Watchtower keeps changing its mind about these things. Continue reading
The error of ignoring the immediate context is defined as follows: “A text of Scripture is quoted but removed from the surrounding verses which form the immediate framework for its meaning..”
In my mind, the greatest example of this in Watchtower literature is its use of Ecclesiastes 9:5.
It latches onto one clause in the middle of the verse—“the dead know nothing at all” (NWT)—and turns those words into its doctrine concerning what happens after death. Continue reading
The Watchtower calls the concept of conscious everlasting punishment of unrepentant human beings a “God-dishonoring doctrine” originated by Satan as a slander on God.[i]
What are some good ways to answer this claim? Continue reading
The Watchtower does not believe in everlasting conscious punishment. It states:
“The very idea of eternal torment is repugnant to God. His maximum punishment for the wicked is to revoke the gift of life.”[i]
I recommend that you counter the Watchtower’s annihilation-of-the-wicked doctrine with a soundbite such as this: Continue reading