A leopard can't change its spots, but THE WATCHTOWER can change its cover. And that's exactly what THE WATCHTOWER did, when it got caught red-handed 'borrowing' a liquor company's picture. Here's what happened:
However, Comments from the Friends, in its October, 1982, issue, publicly exposed what THE WATCHTOWER had done. Ex-JW's also ran newspaper ads, made phone calls, wrote letters, etc., making known the source of THE WATCHTOWER's cover picture.
In the midst of such publicity the liquor company found out what had happened. Not about to swallow the "coincidence" story, they had their legal staff contact the Watchtower Society. Caught red-handed with the liquor company's picture on its cover, and eager to avoid further embarrassment, the Watchtower Society agreed to an out-of-court settlement. Obviously included in this was the provision that they stop using the liquor company's picture in their publications.
But the Watchtower Society is still trying to cover up the facts.
Persons asking why the bound volume reprint has a different cover picture are receiving answers such as the Society's letter shown here claiming that the cover was changed to "produce a more appropriate and suitable illustration."
A little investigation reveals that 'borrowing' the liquor company's picture is by no means the first scandal at Watchtower headquarters. Nor is it the first time The Watchtower has changed its mind about its pictures, its prophetic dates, its doctrines, etc.
For example, when THE WATCHTOWER's prophecy that the world would end in 1914 proved false, the date was changed to 1918. Then to 1925, etc. Later, to 1975. And now [as of this 1983 writing] the Watchtower Society predicts that the world will end "before the generation that saw the events of 1914 passes away."
Faced with these and other changes, Jehovah's Witnesses find thmelves in the situation described by the Living Bible's paraphrase of Ephesians 4:14 --
" . . . forever changing our minds about what we believe because someone has told us something different, or has cleverly lied to us and made the lie sound like the truth."If you are one of Jehovah's Witnesses, and now realize that the Watchtower Society's claim to be "the channel of communications from God is false, you owe it to yourself to identify the true channel. God's channel is not another organization publishing a magazine, but is the "one mediator between God and men," Jesus Christ.
Jesus invites you to come to the Father through Him: "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6) THE WATCHTOWER may change its pictures, its prophetic dates and its teachings, but "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and for ever." (Hebrews 13:8)
Accept Jesus' invitation, and learn the real meaning of Christianity -- something more than the dry routine of attending meetings and going from house to house offering magazines. Jesus says,
"Come to me, all you who labor and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart,' and you will find rest for your souls.' Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light." (Matthew 11:28-30, Jerusalem Bible)
WATCHTOWER REVERSES ITSELF on policy that sent JWs to prison for years.
A "new truth" in the May 1, 1996 WATCHTOWER magazine allows Jehovah's Witnesses to accept civilian 'alternative service' as conscientious objectors to the military draft.
Prior to this time draftees who reported to civilian hospitals for such noncombatant work faced the punishment of being shunned by family and friends as "disassociated persons." In order to be accepted as faithful JWs, young men had to insist on total exemption as "ministers"--or, if this exemption was not granted, they had to go to prison as draft refusers. This policy resulted in the imprisonment of thousands of 'faithful' Witness boys in recent decades, and in the enforced shunning of many others.
Ironically, a majority of the JW Governing Body at Brooklyn headquarters had been voting to abandon that policy ever since 1978, but not the two-thirds majority required to enact such a "new truth." (See pages 101-102 of the book Crisis of Conscience by former Governing Body member Raymond Franz.) The required two-thirds majority vote must now have finally taken place, allowing the May 1, 1996 issue of THE WATCHTOWER to announce its "new truth."
In the meantime, for nearly 18 years, JW young men have been going to prison to comply with the old policy that even most of the sect's Governing Body members did not believe in.
In all of this, the Watchtower Society has gone "beyond what is written" (1 Corinthians 4:6) in the Bible. Although denouncing war and killing, Scripture allows even soldiers and army officers to become baptized members of the Christian congregation. (Compare Acts 10:1-48)
More information on this and other new developments in Watchtower teaching appears in the Summer issue of COMMENTS FROM THE FRIENDS.
SELECT "text only" OR "with graphics" TO VIEW the following:
The "1914 generation" (text only) (with graphics)
Brief history of Jehovah's Witnesses (text only) (with graphics)
How COMMENTS began (text only) (with graphics)
"Whom shall we go away to?" (text only) (with graphics)
"Scripture alone!" (text only) (with graphics)
Old WT books by Russell, Rutherford, etc. (text only) (with graphics)
Books, tapes, videos (text only) (with graphics)
To obtain additional information--
David A. Reed, editor COMMENTS FROM THE FRIENDS
P.O. Box 819, Assonet, MA 02702
Last updated:October 16, 1996