Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Jehovah's Non-witnesses

In the past there was a time when I knew about a dozen Jehovah's Witnesses. This took place over a number of years, so I learned a thing or two.

They are much like the Emergents. Similar to orthodox Christians, and unlike Emergents, they emphasize absolute truth. But there is something very keen and very pointed that they share with the Emergents.

Both Emergents and JW's hate orthodox Christians or orthodox Christianity, at least. And both have become very adept at enumerating the faults of the orthodox and they see the orthodox as a bit unlearned or stupid. One thing I learned from my old JW friends is that in their church services (Kingdom Hall services) much time is spent on teaching and learning apologetics against the Trinity and orthodoxy in general.

There are three differences, though, that could give us pause to think.

First, unlike the Emergents, JW's will be courteous when debating and will always deal with the issues. They never lie to "win" an argument. They are wrong, but they really believe it. And while they will disengage from an argument, they will do so politely and without disparaging their opponent.

Second, because JW's believe in aboslute truth, they teach ethics other than just the admonishment "don't judge." That will never be true of the Emergent, despite the Emergents' claim to give more emphasis to deeds, not creeds. (Look for an upcoming post titled "The Deeds-not Creeds Creed.")

Third, because the JW's believe in absolute truth, they are out witnessing to their faith every weekend. And, as one would expect, because truth is of little importance to the Emergents, they have nothing much to witness about. They settle for being "missional" whatever that means this week.

The BIG question is this: If you are an orthodox Christian, bearer of the gospel truth, do your neighbors know?

In Christ,
Phil Perkins. PS--Isn't "Deeds, not Creeds" a...uuuhhh...eerrr...uumm...watchacallit...oh, yeah--a creed?



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