4

There are a lot of publications of JW interpreting the Bible and our lives. Are members of this church requested to agree to all or a certain canon of teachings or are they supposed to draw their own conclusions from Bible studies?

1 Answer 1

4

The simple answer is that all who become members must be baptized by full water immersion (so, no babies or children not old enough to give their free agreement to the expectations put to them below.) They must publicly agree to these questions put to baptismal candidates:

(1) On the basis of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, have you repented of your sins and dedicated yourself to Jehovah to do his will?

(2) Do you understand that your dedication and baptism identify you as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses in association with God’s spirit-directed organization?

However, in order to satisfy elders examining them that their agreement with those questions is based on clear understanding of what will be required of them as members of this religious organization, they have to go through the following list (which was in a 2020 document, so if there is a more up-to-date one, perhaps someone could supply that, instead of this.)

2020 JW Baptismal Questions QUESTIONS FOR THOSE DESIRING TO BE BAPTIZED

Part 1 – Elementary Bible Teachings:

Who is the true God?

What are some of Jehovah’s outstanding qualities?

What terms does the bible use to help us understand some aspects of Jehovah’s authority?

What does it mean to give Jehovah exclusive devotion?

Why does he alone deserve such devotion?

How should we view and treat God’s personal name?

Why is it important for us to use God’s personal name in worship?

How will Jehovah God sanctify his name? How can we have a share in this?

Why would it be wrong for us to make an image of God or to attempt to worship him through the use of images?

What does it mean for a person to dedicate himself to Jehovah? Have you made your personal dedication to Jehovah in prayer?

Who is Jesus Christ?

What is Jesus’ position in relation to Jehovah? What authority has Jehovah given him?

Why did Jesus come to earth and die a sacrificial death?

Why do we need the ransom, and how does it affect you personally?

What is the holy spirit, and what has been accomplished by means of it?

How does holy spirit operate for our benefit today?

What is the Kingdom of God?

What blessings will Kingdom rule bring for the earth and for mankind?

What does it mean to seek first the Kingdom?

How do we know that we have entered into the time of the end and that God’s Kingdom is ruling?

Who is Satan the Devil? Where did he and his demons come from?

What challenge did Satan make against Jehovah and his rulership in the garden of Eden? What false accusation did Satan make against faithful Job?

How can we personally show our support for Jehovah and his rulership and prove that Satan’s accusations against God’s servants are false?

What will become of Satan and his demons, according to Jehovah’s judgment against them?

What are some of the spiritistic practices that Christians shun?

What is the human soul? Can the soul die?

What is sin? How did we all become sinners?

What should you do if you commit a serious sin?

What should be our attitude toward sin?

What is death? Why do people die?

What hope is there for one who dies?

How many from among mankind will be raised to heavenly life with Jesus Christ?

What will those who are resurrected to heaven do there?

What is the hope for mankind in general?

Why should we hold firmly to our hope in the resurrection of the dead?

Part 2 – Jehovah’s Righteous Requirements: There are some 38 questions to be answered regarding marriage, sexual conduct, divorce, blood transfusions, abortion, lying, stealing, use of alcohol, use of drugs, gambling, being reproved for serious sin, idolatry, choice of secular work, entertainment and recreation, joining in worship with non-Jehovah's Witnesses, the only celebration they are commanded to observe, and birthdays.

Part 3 – Jehovah’s Arrangement of Things: There are some 32 questions to be dealt with regarding behaviour (in marriage, with headship, with children, in the kingdom halls, towards worldly rulers). Also with showing right attitudes and behaviour regarding the Governing Body, studying the Bible, attending meetings and participating in them, going on door-to-door work,use of money and possessions, dealing with persecution, and praying,

However, as you only asked about agreement with teachings, and their beliefs about the Bible, I have only detailed those points.

From all of that, it is obvious that they are not encouraged to draw their own conclusions from the Bible. Further, by agreeing with the questions put immediately before water baptism, the candidate is identified as “an associate” of an organization.

9
  • 1
    "Also with showing right attitudes and behaviour regarding the Governing Body,": means agree or submit to?
    – Jeschu
    Commented Aug 6, 2022 at 18:06
  • 1
    Do the questions need a particular answer?
    – Jeschu
    Commented Aug 6, 2022 at 18:06
  • optional question: are you a present or former JW (answer "yes" is ok)
    – Jeschu
    Commented Aug 6, 2022 at 18:10
  • Please cite the "2022 document" that you reference.
    – agarza
    Commented Aug 6, 2022 at 18:36
  • @ Jeschu Anyone saying they agree to all those doctrines, getting baptized but not submitting to them would eventually be disfellowshipped, given the points in Section 2 - 'being reproved for serious sin'. No set form of words is required for answers as long as the responses show sufficient understanding and agreement. I have a very large library of Watchtower Society publications, some going back to the early 1900s, and others in this century.
    – Anne
    Commented Aug 6, 2022 at 19:15

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .