A Jehovah’s Witness called round, and offered me the Watchtower. I told him I would read it if he would take and read Advices and Queries. As he refused, so I declined too. The next day on Oxford St a pretty young woman handed out “Awake!”, so I took one. What do they give people, to try to bring them to their faith?
They answer fundamental questions, but not in the way I would. “Are suffering and injustice part of God’s purpose?” It refers me to Deuteronomy 32:4-5, where I read,
The Rock, his work is perfect,
and all his ways are just.
A faithful God, without deceit,
just and upright is he;
yet his degenerate children have dealt falsely with him,
a perverse and crooked generation.
So it’s all our fault. There you go. However, they say, that our planet ideally suits life makes “many people” conclude that it was designed. That dung beetles navigate by starlight- “What do you think?… Was it designed?” Sadly, brane theory gives a different interpretation- of course we live somewhere suited to life: those Universes not so suited have no life to ask these questions; and if an eye can evolve, so can the ability to walk in a straight line.
There is an article on Joseph Priestley. I had known that he isolated oxygen, calling it “dephlogisticated air”; I had not known that he denied the doctrine of the Trinity, nor that the JWs do too, though he has nothing else to do with them: their antecedents do not go back before 1870.
Awake! is a general interest magazine, informing me that I should gently floss daily and brush at least twice a day. Then “Help for the Family | Marriage”: “How to control spending”. Your spending is out of control. Is your spouse to blame? What can you do? Instead of blaming each other, work as a team to bring spending under control. It cites Ephesians 4:32- be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.
The cover story is “What makes a good friend?” Show you care, communicate well, have realistic expectations and widen your circle of friends. Well, so far so good, but none of this is new to anyone, surely?
The Watchtower gives God’s View of Smoking. God disapproves, apparently: you must love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, but you cannot if you abuse your God-given body by indulging in a defiling habit; nor can you love your neighbour if you expose them to second-hand smoke.
Referred to their website for teenagers, I find You can choose what you will let your mind dwell on. Both in your thinking and in your conduct, you can be chaste if you choose to! What? Teenagers?
I can’t see how any of this would allure anyone into investigating the JWs further. Is it designed to put people off, so that they can feel like martyrs?