Dealing with distractions is a big part of witnessing. People in general love to take any rabbit trail that comes up in a conversation. If one does not come up naturally, they will create one!
Jehovah’s Witnesses are similar in that they find it their job to teach the one witnessing to them. The words sound good. “We just want to teach everyone more about Jehovah and help them have a stronger relationship with him. See, let’s look at the Lord’s prayer. From Jesus’ example, we can see how to pray!” (Taken from an actual conversation I had with a Jehovah’s Witness.) So how do we, as Christians, redirect in love?
There is an art to redirecting any evangelistic conversation that I’m not sure can be taught. And I know that I am not qualified to teach such an art. But there are a few helpful principles I like to keep in mind.
- You have the truth. Any other belief that is contradictory to what is taught in Scripture is not truth. In an evangelistic situation, your goal is to present the truth in love.
- Without the truth, this person (or group of people) is going to hell. There is no middle ground.
- If this person is going to hell without the truth, and you have the truth, you need to communicate the truth with a sense of urgency!
- Do not allow a person to talk over you. When you are speaking in the name of Jesus, you have power over the lies of satan. Speak firmly and in love and communicate the sense of urgency.
- Do not feel the need to respond to every comment or question. Most comments or questions are distractions. Sometimes simply continuing on in presenting the truth is the best thing.
- Always pray as you speak to a Jehovah’s Witness for wisdom in dealing with them as an individual. There is no one right way to handle every person or one right argument to encourage them to examine their own beliefs.
- Most importantly, know what you believe. Presenting the truth is far more about your own knowledge of God than it is about understanding all the ins and outs of a cult.
Note: I do not endorse everything on all of these links. Please browse using wisdom!
Jehovah’s Witnesses claim that Jesus did not actually rise from the dead in the physical sense. The Watchtower teaches that the resurrection was that of an invisible spirit.
Luke 24:39 clearly states otherwise:
See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.
Jesus is speaking to the disciples. He knows that they are having a difficult time comprehending the resurrection. They thought they were seeing a ghost. He tells them to reach out and touch Him. He was resurrected in the physical body.
Jehovah’s Witnesses rely on the teaching of the Watchtower to lead their religion. The only text that is qualified to base our beliefs on is the Scriptures. All else cannot compare with the infallible Word of God in the cannon of Scripture.
A few more posts will follow in the Jehovah’s Witness Series. There is such vast online resources dealing with the specifics of their beliefs. I am going to link to some of those resources in the next post and deal with the topic of distractions in the final post.
Paul Washer gives a great in-a-nutshell method of talking to Jehovah’s Witnesses in this seven minute clip. I love how he uses Galatians 1:9 (ESV): “As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.”
Listen and be encouraged. Share the true Gospel boldly with the Jehovah’s Witnesses you meet.
How do you know if you are witnessing to a Jehovah’s Witness?
- They may just tell you!
- They will say only 144,000 are going to heaven.
- They may talk about the meek inheriting the earth.
- They begin to divert the questions you ask them.
- They will deny the Trinity.
- They will refer to God as Jehovah (what they believe is His one true name).
- They will deny that Jesus is God.
- They will deny that there is hell.
- They will claim salvation only through the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.
These are a few of the key things that I am learning to listen for when I am street witnessing.
See also Jehovah’s Witnesses Part I. More to come!
Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. Acts 20:28 ESV
This verse presents a problem for Jehovah’s Witnesses as they claim that Jesus is a lesser god and a created being. According to this verse in Acts, we see that God purchased the church through His own blood. The blood that was shed was Jesus Christ’s- God in the flesh. The New World Translation changes the verse to say “through the blood of his son”. They have altered the Word of God to match their beliefs.
In an effort to grow in my boldness towards sharing my faith with Jehovah’s Witnesses, I will be going through the basic elements of Jehovah’s Witnesses beliefs and how they are in contrast to true Christianity. And of course there will be stories and practical tips.