How Do Jehovah's Witnesses Justify "Shunning" Of Ex-Witnesses and Claim it is "Loving"?
I know many ex-members, who left ONLY because of a "difference of belief" in many, or a few of the
These people did NOT stop worshiping God, nor did they cease to put faith in His Son, Jesus Christ.
Many of these men and women, had to decide "between their faith, or their family", in order to leave the WTBTS.
Many of these ex-members were aware of the facts surrounding the process of leaving, and accepted that they would never be able to speak to a child, parent, grandparent, or friends that were forged over sometimes "many decades".
I have been told that Jehovah's Witnesses do not shun, and that the refusal to speak with these ex-members is a "loving provision", placed there by God Jehovah?
Here is my question to the Watchtower Followers;
How can it be a loving provision, when the literature provided to the WT members, is focused on having "no contact if at all possible" with these people?
Keeping focused on the REASON for their departure from the "Organization", and also considering that on an INDIVIDUAL BASIS, these people DID NOT stop BELIEVING in the shed Blood of Christ, His Lordship, and His Father's superior position, how can the WTBTS separate a mother's love from a son, a daughter, immediate family?
If one of the primary teachings of Jehovah's Witnesses is that "The truth will set you free", and a person that truly believes in their hearts that they are NOT set free in the WT has left for that very reason, Christian Freedom, how can this organization intentionally cause them pain and hurt, on both sides of the fence, for a doctrine of "love" that is highly questionable scripturally, and morally?
It has been claimed by a recent Awake article, that "No one should have to be Forced to make a choice between his faith, or his family".
This is a "choice" that is FORCED upon members who decide they are in conflict with the WT doctrines.
So, can it be reasonably argued, from a Biblical viewpoint, that to extend mercy, and compassion to the loved ones that have left, and the ones remaining is a truly more Christlike position to take?
If the WT has the pure, unadulterated truth, how could showing love for a mother, a father, sister, brother who has left for Biblical inspired reasons, not be extended?
Finally, I know men and women, who, after decades of service to the WT, have decided to leave the Organization, and in doing so, some have been able to maintain communication with old family and friends.
The mothers and sisters and brothers and aunts and uncles and friends who are active members in the WT, are STILL maintaining contact with these people, in a hidden manner, from their elders.
We asked an edler's wife how she was able to stay in contact with her son, disassociated for over 20 years, when other members were very strict in maintaining this "love" bu not speaking to a departed family member.
She replied, "My husband knows I am visiting him (2 times a year for 2 weeks) and knows it is because he needs my support for his health and his wife's health issues.
At the same time, another mother, whose husband is not an elder, has a son she has not seen or spoken with for 10 years. When she last talked to him, the elders found out, and lovingly threatened her with a "judicial hearing" if she were ever to speak with him again. She did not, and she did not ever know the grandson she has, and she did not know the daughter-in law that died, 5 years before she also died, of a broken heart.
Do you see the double standard that exists here? Do you see how their elder's "position" within the organization is a platform to exercise a "different view" of this loving provision from Jehovah?
Thank you for considering these questions, I truly hope reasonableness, and "Love of the Christ" will move you to an answer, if not here, in your hearts.
It is interesting that all Jehovah's Witnesses here, did not read my post. They treat everyone as a wicked practicer of sin!
I am a moral, Christian man, with nothing to hide. I left this sect, because of THEIR failure to measure up to the LOVE of the Christ. They are the apostates and the true "antichrist" especially if they defend, and promote these teachings.
When the Jesus of the Bible returns to His True Believers, He will "adjust" the thinking of this sect.
My hope is that they seek love, seek kindness, and most of all, as proclaimed "imitaters" of Jesus, leave this wretched, hate promoting type of thinking that has destroyed millions of lives worldwide...
This is not over with by a long-shot.
The love of those here who have endured for many years, recognize the real power behind this false doctrine of shunning...it is to hide the truth from these deceived people. This is truly Satan's people, not God's.
- Anonymous9 years agoFavorite Answer
There are measures to bring the WBS into accountability legally for this and I think it is long over due.
Paul stated at 1 Timothy 5:8 Certainly if anyone does not provide for those who are his own, and especially for those who are members of his household, he has disowned the faith and is worse than a person without faith.
A review of Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 1 p.788 Expelling shows that many scriptures that relate to disfellowshipping discuss assisting or reproving the person.
2 Corinthians 2:5-11 5 Now if anyone has caused sadness, he has saddened, not me, but all of YOU to an extentnot to be too harsh in what I say. 6 This rebuke given by the majority is sufficient for such a man, 7 so that, on the contrary now, YOU should kindly forgive and comfort [him], that somehow such a man may not be swallowed up by his being overly sad. 8 Therefore I exhort YOU to confirm YOUR love for him.
Persons can be so traumatised by being disfellowshipped that many contemplate and carry out suicide. It is common to suffer Post Traumatic Shock Disorder. The harsh stance of the Watchtower has a counter productive affect. Being Disfellowshipped has been the catalyst to cause many to doubt whether the Watchtower is the true religion. The trauma and effort involved in being reinstated that caused them to begin researching outside Watchtower publications and to come to the conclusion that the Watchtower it is not Gods chosen way.
With many religions when a person no longer believes or is practicing sin they will tend to drift away from Church and associate with like minded individuals outside the congregation. This is how it is with unbaptised Witness youths; they leave over time, generally in their teens. Most that do not follow Watchtower guidelines or that do not believe it is the Truth stop going to meetings. However disfellowshipping is a form of entrapment that forces baptised Witnesses, including myself to spend years going to meetings whilst not believing or adhering to Watchtower regulations. This is done to avoid being disfellowshipped, in order to prevent being shunned by family. By encouraging people to stay and lead double lives disfellowshipping possibly results in more people being influenced than if the wrongdoers are encouraged to drift away.
Since the word disfellowship does not appear in the Scriptures, the New World Translation Reference Bible "Bible words indexed" directs the reader to the term "expelled".
"DISFELLOWSHIP(PED). See EXPEL, EXPELLED"
Under Expelled the Scriptures are
Joh 9:22 e. from synagogue
Joh 12:42 not to be e. from synagogue"
Both references are regarding the Pharisees practice of expelling from the Synagogue.
John 9:22 "His parents said these things because they were in fear of the Jews, for the Jews had already come to an agreement that, if anyone confessed him as Christ, he should get expelled from the synagogue."
The closest Scriptural example the Watchtower can find for the term disfellowship is that of the Pharisees.
- 9 years ago
Its not shunning. Its simply a provision to keep a safe distance to remain spiritually healthy. Think of it this way: If you had a large family with lots of children and one got dangerously sick, and was very contagious, would you let that child share food with the other children so that they could risk eventually ALL getting sick, or would you kindly seperate the sick one and be careful not to let the sickness spread? It doesn't mean you wouldn't love that child and take care of it and look after it until it got well, but you would try to look out for the safety of your other children as well. You have to remember, while the love for that one child isn't forgotten, the love for the others is also there so you have to know your boundaries. If that child could risk getting the others all sick, the best thing to do would to keep it at a distance from the others until it was healthy and strong again. Thats exactly what this loving arrangement is all about. And, disfellowshipping is all up to each persons attitude. Only UNREPENTANT sinners who feel their actions were justified, are the ones who are. Everyone makes mistakes, humility is key in making things right again. And as soon as that person shows they are making an effort to come back, the elders and congregation lovingly welcome them back with open arms. I've seen it happen and its the most beautiful happy moment. Sometimes, people need a wakeup call, and that arrangement makes them realize how important the truth really is to them, and how much they miss it. Like a "time-out" when kids do something, and the parent tells them to "sit and think about it in the corner for 10 minutes."
- Anonymous9 years ago
So our God who requires that an unrepentant wrongdoer be expelled from the congregation also lovingly shows that a sinner can be reinstated in the congregation if he repents and turns around. (A disassociated person can similarly request to become part of the congregation again.) Thereafter he can be comforted by Christians who will confirm their love for him. (2 Corinthians 2:5-11; 7:8-13) Truly, it is just as Paul wrote: “No discipline seems for the present to be joyous, but grievous; yet afterward to those who have been trained by it it yields peaceable fruit, namely, righteousness.”—Hebrews 12:11.
In short, disfellowshipping is a SCRIPTURAL practice. If someone refuses to be peaceable in the congregation and causes problems inside of a calm atmosphere, then would it be fair to let that person stay without any consequences? The atmosphere would be put into chaos and would bring negativity to the congregation, eventually spreading to a larger scale. Plus, it would make our faith look hypocritical if we simply turned a blind eye to blatant sin, much like how other religions do now. Jehovah does not want to see anyone go through the process of being expelled from the congregation and he always welcomes them back if they decide they want to turn their life back around and do what is right.Source(s): w88 4/15, 30-31
- 9 years ago
Many people feel that this act taken is very cruel & harsh but we MUST let the Bible be our only source of authority. 2 Ti 3:16 Please read 1 Co 5:9-13. It says with no distinctions that those who profess to be spiritual brothers & sisters(family included) who take up a course of conduct not befitting as followers of God's inspired word inside the congregation(not of those who are not believers) are to be removed & not even to eat with such a person, for bad association & a laxed approach to spiritual crimes can become detrimental for the congregation leaving some to think that it's ok to disobey what the scriptures have to say. 1Co 15:33 Many may dispute such actions but the Bible clearly states that this course of action is to be taken. Think about it, if more people followed this council in their churches then maybe those who commit & practice such sins on a regular basis will not take up the word of God in vain & take the scriptures more serious for this is what has been written for our protection. I am not one of Jehovah's Witnesses.Source(s): THE BIBLE
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- D-NikkiLv 49 years ago
You think you have alot of information, but you are very uninformed. There are many things you don't know.
Did any of the "ex-Jehovah's Witnesses" you talked to tell you where the disfellowshipping arrangement is found in the Bible? ...I don't think so. Here's what the Bible says:
1 Corinthians 5:13 - "Remove the wicked [man] from among yourselves."
Also, did any of them tell you that the stipulation to cut off all unnecessary contact with the disfellowshipped or disassociated person is in the Bible too? ...I don't think so. Here's what the Bible says:
1 Corinthians 5:11 - "Quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator or a greedy person or an idolater or a reviler or a drunkard or an extortioner, not even eating with such a man."
2 John 11 - "(10) Never receive him into your homes or say a greeting to him. (11) For he that says a greeting to him is a sharer in his wicked works."
*You claimed that we as Jehovah's Witnesses inflict hurt and pain on our family members or friends when we avoid unnecessary contact with them. Well, that shows what you don't know. Rather, we are inflicted with hurt and pain when a family member or friend of ours decides to practice sin and therefore be removed from the congregation. No matter what you may hear, it's hard to avoid speaking to someone who we once talked to and freely associated with as our Christian brother or sister. But we do it because we realize that it's best for them and for us. They know that too.*
Now, you wonder how it is that disfellowshipping is a loving thing. Well, disfellowshipping is a form of discipline and "whom Jehovah loves he disciplines", according to Hebrews 12:6.
Hebrews 12:11 states: "True, no discipline seems for the present to be joyous, but grievous; yet afterward to those who have been trained by it it yields peaceable fruit, namely, righteousness."
When the disfellowshipped/disassociated person has been 'trained by the discipline', they can once again be a part of God's people. Notice what one of Jehovah's Witnesses said about the disfellowshipping arrangement after she had been reinstated to the congregation:
"I am happy that Jehovah loves his people enough to see that his organization is kept clean. What may seem harsh to outsiders is both necessary and really a loving thing to do. I am grateful that our heavenly Father is a loving and forgiving God."
Obviously, no one has told you how happy any one of Jehovah's Witnesses is when a family member or friend returns to the congregation by being reinstated. We are overjoyed and thankful to have our brother or sister among us once again.
~ Hopefully, your reasonableness and love of Christ will move you to accept the Scriptural information that has been presented. If not, you have the problem.Source(s): - The Bible - Being one of Jehovah's Witnesses
- truthbearerLv 79 years ago
This is a terrible thing. If a person cannot and will not love their own parents, especially in your case, being disabled, that person has NEVER known the true God and likely never will.
This org is ...oh well, better not say it. only gets me reported. You know what I mean.
God is LOVE.
God's spirit inside a person fills that person with love. God said honour your parents. This never ceases to be from God.
I hope these deceived souls find the truth of God before their lives are over. I am thankful you found it and are spending your life seeking to open the door of freedom to some of them.
God bless you.Source(s): KJV truth
- Smiling JW™Lv 79 years ago
It's a scriptural counsel on those that left serving Jehovah after coming to an accurate knowledge of him and turning back from the spiritual light to the darkness of the world. Like a dog that returns to it's own vomit.
(2 Peter 2:20-22) Certainly if, after having escaped from the defilements of the world by an accurate knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they get involved again with these very things and are overcome, the final conditions have become worse for them than the first. 21 For it would have been better for them not to have accurately known the path of righteousness than after knowing it accurately to turn away from the holy commandment delivered to them. 22 The saying of the true proverb has happened to them: “The dog has returned to its own vomit, and the sow that was bathed to rolling in the mire.”
(1 Corinthians 5:11-13) But now I am writing YOU to quit mixing in company with anyone called a brother that is a fornicator or a greedy person or an idolater or a reviler or a drunkard or an extortioner, not even eating with such a man. 12 For what do I have to do with judging those outside? Do YOU not judge those inside, 13 while God judges those outside? “Remove the wicked [man] from among yourselves.”
The provision to return to the love of the congregation exists and thousands each year do come back to serving Jehovah. Such ones humble themselves and do know the congregation has to keep itself clean from defilement JUST as Jehovah teaches. One of the purposes of disfellowshipping is to cause the sinner to wake up and hopefully to repent and turn around.
If a person is disfellowshipped then they shunned foremost Jehovah and Christ after coming to an accurate knowledge; those in the congregation and their friends and gone back to the detestable things of the world that is alienated from Jehovah.
Being disfellowshipped is the last resort when all other things have failed to turn the person around from sin. They made a resolve to not return to having a clean conscious and standing with Jehovah God and fore go the privileges of what those who remain steadfast and loyal are entitled to. But because later when they are no longer involved in the good spiritual association of the congregation many who have left do come to their senses and take steps to reinstatement.
My congregation has welcomed back several returning ones and they are probably stronger now in the congregation than ever.
And if you still don't want to accept the scriptures shown then it is ultimately Jehovah and his authoritative right of how his congregation should deal with unrepentant ones that YOU have a problem with and that Jehovah's Witness follow the counsel.
- Very Big SwordLv 59 years ago
This is the very policy that betrays JW's for being in a controlling cult that is utter nonsense. Christian religion aside, this is insidious behavoir, totally unchristian and deserving of the utter contempt it receives from those with any kind of intellect or understanding of the real truth.
I have a number of friends who are JW's. I never talk to them about religion but I know one has left them, he lost his leg because of their stupid blood transfusion beliefs and now he is out. I dont know why, or whether its okay to broach the subject with him. I havent seen him in a while, but I spit on any JW who thinks this is okay. You are mad and evil.
EDIT _ LOL at the swarming JW's flocking to answer this one. A sense of guilt perhaps because you know the people in charge are mad and wrong on this one......
- TraceALv 59 years ago
I couldn't read all that, but get the book, "Damaged Disciples" to understand what fuels this primeval outdated behavior in religious groups, and how to heal from it.
- MayflowerLv 79 years ago
Bottom line is that if Jw could not love Jesus as Son of God, begotten, not made; it is beyond my understanding why would they show love to you when they do not know True Love.