What to say when Jehovah's Witnesses Knock

April 7, 2016

SOME OPENING REMINDERS…

  • Jehovah’s Witnesses have their own version of the Bible called the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures (2013 edition). Hereafter I'll refer to it as NWT. This version contains altered texts like John 1:1, John 8:58, Colossians 1:16-17, Hebrews 1:8, etc. The following questions therefore appeal to Scriptures they have yet to corrupt while using their translation's phraseology.

  • Jehovah’s Witnesses will not accept any literature but their own. They are unswervingly loyal to the teachings of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.

  • Jehovah’s Witnesses will seldom admit they are wrong. Hence, your goal is simply to plant seeds of doubt in their minds causing them to question the authority and teachings of the Watchtower Organization.

  • Always remember, the one who asks the questions is in the driver’s seat, so be the driver of your conversation whether you ask several questions or just one. This question-asking tactic is not only helpful in challenging their beliefs, it is also helpful if you are short on time or do not feel entirely comfortable dialoguing with cultists.


Begin with…

“May I ask you a question?”

Then follow with one or more of the following…
 

ORGANIZATIONAL QUESTIONS

  1. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe the Watchtower is God’s organization on earth. (Their literature is abundantly clear on this point.) Is that true? [“Yes,” they’ll reply.] Where in the Bible does it say that? (If they point you to “the faithful and wise servant [or discreet slave]” in Matthew 24:45, ask, “Where does Jesus say in that verse “the faithful and discreet slave” is the Watchtower Organization?” Continue to press until they acknowledge that the Bible nowhere says the Watchtower is God’s earthly organization.)
     

  2. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in order to receive salvation one must “associate” or “identify” with the Watchtower Organization. (This is their third of four requirements for salvation, or, to be exact, forever living on paradise earth, except, of course, for the 144,000 who forever live in heaven. Oh, the complexities of the Watchtower Organization!) Is that true? [“Yes,” they reply.] Where in the Bible does it say that? (Of course, the Bible nowhere says this. So, again, whichever verse they point to, ask, “Where does it say in that verse in order to receive salvation one must ‘associate’ or ‘identify’ with the Watchtower Organization?” Don’t let them off the hook.)
     

  3. Will you read Deuteronomy 18:21-22? In light of this word from Jehovah, what do you make of the Watchtower’s false prophecies concerning the Battle of Armageddon with the dates 1914, 1918, and 1925? Should an organization which makes false prophecies be trusted?


TRANSLATIONAL QUESTION

  1. Why does the New World Translation insert the word “Jehovah” into the New Testament when no Greek manuscripts contain it? Isn’t this adding to the Word of God? (See Proverbs 30:5-6.)


THEOLOGICAL QUESTIONS

  1. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Jesus is Michael the Archangel. (They believe Jesus was created as Michael the Archangel, then became a perfect human, only to resume his angelic status after his spiritual resurrection.) Is that true? [“Yes,” they’ll reply.] Where in the Bible does it say that? (There is no such reference to Jesus being Michael the Archangel. So, whichever verse they quote, again ask, “Where does it say in that verse Jesus is Michael the Archangel?” This is an important question. Be sure not to let them wiggle off the hook.)
     

  2. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Jesus was “a god.” (The most notable perversion in the NWT on this point is John 1:1.) Is that true? [“Yes,” they’ll reply.] Will you read Matthew 1:21-23? After they read Matthew 1:21-23, ask, “If Jesus is ‘a god,’ why is He called Immanuel, which means, ‘With Us Is God’? If Jehovah’s Witnesses are correct, shouldn’t it say ‘With us is ‘a’ God’?”
     

  3. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Jesus is not equal with Jehovah. (They believe Jesus is Jehovah’s first creation. They alter many texts including Colossians 1:16–17 by inserting “other” four times into the passage. The problem is neither of the two Greek words that can be translated “other” are found in this passage. The previous 1984 edition of the NWT contained brackets around [other] in the above passage. In the 2013 edition, however, they simply dropped the brackets. Bold move indeed!) Is that true? [“Yes,” they’ll reply.] Choose one or both of the following questions to ask.

    a. Will you read Isaiah 45:23? Will you now read Philippians 2:9-10? If Jesus isn’t equal to Jehovah, why does the Bible say that every knee will “bend” to both?
    b. Will you read Isaiah 44:6? Will you now read Revelation 1:17-18? If Jesus isn’t equal to Jehovah, why are both of them said to be “the first and the last”?

     

  4. I’ve heard that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe the Holy Spirit isn’t equal to God. (They believe the Holy Spirit is God’s active force.) Is that true? [“Yes,” they’ll reply.] Will you read Acts 5:3-4? If the Holy Spirit isn't equal to God, why does Peter say that lying to the Holy Spirit is lying to God?


EVANGELICAL QUESTIONS

  1. Would you tell me the Gospel? (They'll invariably mention God's kingdom, paradise earth, good works, etc.) After they've given you their definition of the Gospel, read 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 and point out what the Apostle Paul says is the Gospel, that Christ died for our sins, that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day. Then immediately read Galatians 1:6-9. Case settled.
     

  2. A knife is in my back (not really). I have 2 minutes left to live. Please tell me what I must do to be saved. (If they give you any answer that does not involve repentance from sin, trust in Jesus, submission to His Lordship, etc., ask them to read Acts 16:29–31. Then ask, “What does verse 31 say that one must do in order to be saved?”

 

SOME CLOSING REMINDERS…

  • After you have asked your question(s) and given the Jehovah’s Witnesses time to respond, politely thank them for sharing their time with you and excuse yourself. This is important. Unless you’re an expert in Jehovah’s Witnesses' errant theology or really do feel moved by the Holy Spirit to continue the conversation, politely excuse yourself.

  • Remember, your goal is simply to plant seeds of doubt in their minds causing them to question the authority and teachings of the Watchtower Organization.

  • Lastly, and most importantly, do not forget to pray for their salvation. Pray that the Holy Spirit uses your words to bring them to the knowledge of the Truth. Do this while it is fresh on your mind.

 

 

*This witnessing guide contains information and ideas from Walter Martin's "Kingdom of the Cults," Matt Slick's website "carm.org," Paul Washer, and Ray Comfort (for the evangelical approaches).

 

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