I am back after a week fighting COVID for the second time. If I am being fair, it was super mild the time I spent sleeping it off the first couple of days probably helped with the quick recovery. I am thankful to the Lord for the easy and quick recoup time.
On Saturday I got a knock on the door by some Jehovah Witnesses inviting our family to a ‘Memorial of Jesus’ Death’ service. First, on Easter we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. Yes, we do have ‘Good Friday’ services, but the main thrust of Easter is “He is Risen!”. Jehovah’s witnesses have some fundamental breaks with the Christian faith:
- They don’t believe in the Trinity – they believe that God the Father alone is the only one and true God.
- Therefore, they believe that Jesus was something other than God and more likely an angel. They believe and teach that Jesus Christ is the incarnate name of Michael the archangel. Further, they believe that Michael was the first angel created by God the Father and is second in command in God’s organization.
- They also deny that the Holy Spirit is a person. They believe that the Holy Spirit is an impersonal force that God uses to accomplish His will.
- Because they do not believe that Jesus is God, they do not believe in Salvation through faith alone. They believe in a complicated works-based salvation process where they likely will not achieve eternal life because they believe that only 144,000 will reach that eternal security.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses explicitly deny the gospel by grace alone through faith alone apart from works. They deny that a person is justified by faith. They deny the nature of Christ and the atonement; they deny the resurrection and the just wrath of God upon sin. Therefore, it is impossible to affirm that a consistent Jehovah’s Witness is also a genuine Christian.
The bible translation they adhere to is the New World Translation which is full of alternate readings that do not have textual warrant in either the Greek or the Hebrew. Nearly all of these alternate readings are intended to support the particular views of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
So, this is all very interesting in light of my current reading in Luke of the conception of Jesus by Mary after receiving the word from the angel Gabriel that she would be having a Son and that would name Him Jesus.