This is not: How to Prove a Jehovah’s Witness Wrong.
Jehovah’s Witnesses—sigh—sure are persistent. I once made the mistake of inviting some into my home. Whatever you do, don’t do that. I had to spiritually clean house afterwards. I hadn’t listened to 2 John 1:7-11.
For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is the deceiver and the antichrist. Watch yourselves, that you do not lose what we have accomplished, but that you may receive a full reward. Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.
Notice that John says the Father and the Son are both God. Anyone who doesn’t abide in the teaching of Christ does not have God. Anyone who does, has both the Father and the Son.
You could say it like this: Anyone who doesn’t open the pizza box, doesn’t get to eat any pizza. Anyone who does open the box, gets the whole pizza.
Do JWs eat pizza? No. JWs don’t abide in the teaching of Christ. Don’t believe anything they say about Jesus, or the Father, or the Holy Spirit because they don’t open the box.
After my home-based encounter with some JWs, I proposed we meet at the public library instead. I sat down with a father-son team at a round table and I asked if I could present for a while—since I did such a great job listening last time—and I pushed for us to stick to just one passage in the Bible, or at least one concept. (JWs tend to use a verse or two here, a verse or two there and string them together while ignoring context, jumping concepts and asking questions they only allow themselves to answer so much so that it gets dizzying.)
There was much debate over which version of the Bible to use because they were hung up on the name YHWH being correctly represented. I said I was going to read the NASB, a version reputed for being highly accurate, and they could compare with whatever they wanted. I was pretty sure their biased version would have missed what I was bringing because I felt like I’d gotten it from God just in time to share it. It was just two weeks fresh for me, and I felt like the pizza delivery guy about to open the box.
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” God, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations…”
I read it again. And then again.
“‘This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations,’” I paused. “Wow! This is how God identifies Himself for-ev-er.”
He didn’t get it. He thought we were talking about the words ‘The Lord’, which, of course, meant Yahweh to him.
“Sure,” I said. “But look at how God defines Yahweh. He is ‘the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ He identifies Himself based upon those guys, upon His history with them, on a history that Moses and the Israelites would know. But it’s also His name forever! So it’s for us, too.”
We read all of Exodus 3. The whole thing. Out loud. Twice. Guess what. God identifies Himself as the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob three times! Was I grasping for straws? Once for each member of The Trinity?
Nah. I didn’t look at it that way. Rather, I wanted to emphasize that I wasn’t plucking a random verse. God was, and is, serious about this name. Exodus 3 and 4 was the beginning of God’s big self-revelation to all of Israel, with Moses as messenger, and God hammered away at this name—this complete, three-person-reference, forever name.
Opening and Closing The Box
I then swept over the big picture stories with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and how I saw the three Persons of The Trinity. I was excited. It was as though saying it all out loud made it even more real to me. I was eating pizza.
The son was drifting in and out of paying attention.
The father kept wanting to find a verse in the New Testament, change topic or go on about the name of Yahweh being important.
I could say it over and over again, “This is Yahweh further clarifying Himself,” but it wouldn’t register. I tried pulling together God saying, “I AM WHO I AM,” followed by, “the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” God broke His name down into a set of three.
In my pizza I had the crust, the sauce, and the cheese.
The JWs didn’t even want to look at the box.
After 45 minutes, I called it quits. I placed a page I had printed out with references on the table, hoping the son would either take it and get some revelation, or at least witness what his father would do with my literature (since they hand out so much of their own). The father took it, and said he’d read it. We scheduled another meeting.
But I didn’t go. God wouldn’t let me. I tried to explain it the next time he came knocking. I’d had a dream, my wife wasn’t cool with me continuing to meet with these guys, my friends weren’t cool with it, and I really didn’t like how the dad wouldn’t let me pray for him. I’d be praying to a “false god” he said.
Like I said, ‘This is not: How to Prove a Jehovah’s Witness Wrong.’ God wanted to reveal Himself to this guy, but this guy wouldn’t be proven wrong. If he were to admit Jesus is God, and the Holy Spirit a Person, this guy’s whole religion would come crashing down.
I hope for his sake, and his son’s sake, that God continues to set bushes on fire for this guy to come look at, to hear from and humbly kneel before the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.