Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Are Elders appointed by Holy Spirit? (Who was the Twelfth Apostle?)

The claim is made that elders within the Congregations of Jehovah's Witnesses, are chosen by Holy Spirit. 
This claim of the Governing Body, is backed up with the example of the choosing of Matthias as the twelfth apostle. 


This example (it is asserted), proves that men can channel Jehovah's choice. Is this true? Did Jehovah choose Matthias by using men? 
The answer to this is very important. In finding it, we can know the truth about whether the elder army of the Governing Body, has really been appointed over you, by God.


Who was chosen as the 12th apostle?
Do you answer Matthias?

It is good to look at why we may feel that way.
In the book of Acts1:23-26,
there is the account of the choosing.


If we look closely, we can discern a few things here.
First...

 men,
men who cannot read hearts, nor do they see like God sees (1Sam.16:7), gave Jehovah the choice between two men, as if he needed them to get candidates for him,
according to what seemed good in their eyes.
And then they had the gall to tell Jehovah, that although they knew He could read hearts, ... He had to limit His selection to the ones they put before Him. 

And then, they "cast lots", knowing the choice was 50/50. 
Afterward, they just assumed that God wanted one of those men. Wherever the "chips fell", they assumed that the whole thing was God's doing.
Do the scriptures tell us that God blessed this decision and chose Matthias?
No. They state that, Matthias, "was reckoned along with the eleven apostles."
Reckoned along by whom? By God? No, by men.


So, we are being told here that God needed to be taken by the hand and prompted to choose a replacement, and apparently, he needed a lot of assistance.




  Yet, who was it that chose all the other apostles? Was it not Jesus Christ himself? That makes sense, since he is the cornerstone of the Holy City made up of the resurrected anointed. He places the apostolic foundation stones for his Kingdom (Rev.21:14). He would be the only one qualified to make such an important choice, no? Maybe the only one with the right to also, yes? 
John15:16; Acts1:2.  Rev.5:9,10  all show that the only one worthy to make such selections is the one who paid the price for these positions. 
1Cor.12:18 says that Jehovah can fill these positions within the anointed body of Christ, without help, or restriction.

So, were these disciples thinking that, now that Jesus is gone, he can no longer do this? Did these lack faith that Jesus could take care of replacing Judas?


Well, At Acts9:1,3,4,5,6,10,15,22; 
they were proven wrong.

Although Paul had to suffer the senseless assumptions of arrogant men, Gal.1:1 makes plain, that the 12th apostle is Paul.

Does this matter today? Absolutely. The "Society" of Jehovah's Witnesses claims that elders are appointed by means of Holy Spirit (through the choice of men), and they back this claim with the account of Matthias.


Yet, if elders were chosen by this means, similar to the anointed being chosen by Holy Spirit,
then why is a list of requirements included in the scriptures? (1Tim3:1-15) 

There is no list of requirements for men to select anointed, are there? Titus 1:5 is one example of the fact, that these appointments, are made by men. They are guided and assisted to do this, by a list of scriptural requirements as directed by Paul. 

Yet, men may point to Acts20:28 as proof of spirit appointment. How do we know that these men were not anointed? If they were, this would explain their position as being directed by spirit. For, the anointed are directed by Christ, to oversee and care for God's flock (John21:15,16,17).

I am one of the many sheep who gave out during the distress caused by the wicked deeds of elders. There are some elders who have given themselves over to gross pride, misconduct, scriptural independence, power, prominence, and outright cruelty and abuse. These behaviors sometimes result in irrevocable damage and even spiritual death. Are we to believe this is all rooted in Jehovah's choice by spirit? How God dishonoring! 

Yet we know that such a man-made doctrine, would support the power and control of this organization; and foster such misconduct and pride, without accountability. 

The true temple of God need not resort to such methods. For, such ones of faith rely on Jehovah's arm for power and authority, and do not believe lies and corruption are necessary evils.

For all of you who have been mistreated by such men, I hope these considerations help you to see that Jehovah is not to blame for the abuse of authority that you have been subjected to. 

For all the elders who humbly submit to truth and guide others by means of God's word, your self-sacrificing spirit and love for your brothers and sisters is much appreciated.



(REPLY BY READER):



The WT teaches that Matthias became one of the 12, with scriptural evidence for their reasoning. I've looked again at that scriptural reasoning and the scriptures themselves, and believe that Matthias is legitimately, the 12th apostle.

It is true that all the other 11 apostles, including Judas, were directly chosen by Jesus, after praying to Jehovah. Paul was of course, directly chosen by Jesus, as one "born prematurely." That is, before he was anointed with the laying of hands by one of the apostles. Acts 9:17-19 .....

So An·a·ni´as went off and entered into the house, and he laid his hands upon him and said: “Saul, brother, the Lord, the Jesus that appeared to you on the road over which you were coming, has sent me forth, in order that you may recover sight and befilled with holy spirit.” 18 And immediately there fell from his eyes what looked like scales, and he recovered sight; and he rose and was baptized, 19 and he took food and gained strength.

But Paul was an "apostle to the nations", and Jesus sent him specifically to preach to the gentiles. Was Matthias apostleship approved by Jehovah. Yes. Peter asked that Judas' replacement should be someone who was with the disciples from the baptism of Jesus by John, right through to his death, and be a witness to his resurrection. Acts1:21,22. Barsabbas and Matthias fulfilled those credentials. Most importantly, they PRAYED for Jehovah's guidance and blessing. Acts1:23,24,25,26.... So they put up two, Joseph called Bar´sab·bas, who was surnamed Justus, and Mat·thi´as.
 24 And they prayed and said: “You, O Jehovah, who know the hearts of all, designate which one of these two men you have chosen, 25 to take the place of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas deviated to go to his own place.” 26 So they cast lots over them, and the lot fell upon Mat·thi´as; and he was reckoned along with the eleven apostles.


Did this decision have Jehovah's approval? Yes. As you know, Jehovah gave only to the apostles, the power to lay hands upon disciples and anoint them with holy spirit. Regarding the food distribution crisis in Acts 6, before Saul was converted, the apostles were referred to as the "twelve", and after prayer, where given the holy spirit to lay their hands upon those chosen to distribute the food. Acts6:2,6

So the twelve called the multitude of the disciples to them and said: “It is not pleasing for us to leave the word of God to distribute [food] to tables

and they placed them before the apostles, and, after having prayed, these laid their hands upon them.

The "twelve" obviously included Matthias, and Jehovah would not have given him authority to summon holy spirit like the rest of the apostles in the laying of hands, if He did not approve of his apostleship.



REPLY BY AUTHOR:



This may seem to be scriptural reasoning, but I have examined the basis for it. I did this before my conclusions, as above. I compared it to deeper scriptural truths, and came up with a clear difference. Perhaps if you consider these reasoning points, you too will form a conclusion that differs from the "official" one.


First, Ananias was not one of the twelve. The scriptures make clear, that although the apostles could pass on certain gifts to others, this ability to anoint only belonged to the twelve, and Ananias was not one of them. Paul was anointed directly by Christ on the road to Damascus Acts 9:4,5,6. (the word, "anointed" means "chosen". Jesus made clear that Paul was a "chosen" vessel to him Acts 9:15.)  Jesus declared Paul to be chosen, not only to bear witness to the Nations, but also "to kings...and to the people of Israel". No special emphasis is given there, to his witnessing exclusively to the Nations.

  Paul was anointed (= chosen) by Christ, as one "born prematurely", because the normal means to seeing the glorified Christ in Kingdom power, is through the rebirth of the first resurrection. This view of Christ does not normally take place for the anointed, until after their resurrection into spirit beings. Yet, Paul had this view prematurely, before the due time for his spiritual birth in resurrection. Viewing the glorified Christ while still human, was as if he had been resurrected to spirit, before his proper time for it. It resulted in him being blinded.

Being told that Paul was "filled with Holy Spirit" through Ananias, did not necessarily mean that this was the time of his anointing, for, we can be filled with spirit at other times as well, for other purposes, such as education. Certainly, the scales falling from Paul's eyes was an outward manifestation of what may have been happening to Paul inside at this same moment. While he had been *spiritually* blind while persecuting Christians, he now had his spiritual sight, also restored. After Ananias laid his hands upon Paul, he could now clearly "see" the truth and his need to transform his life and purpose. At Acts 9:6, Paul was told by Christ why he was to meet with Ananias...."to be told what you must do". Clearly, it was not for the purpose of being anointed (chosen), which he had already been by Christ himself. How senseless to think that a choosing by men is superior to being directly chosen by Christ himself. Would one really need one's anointing by the glorified Christ to be validated by a corruptible vessel of flesh? His meeting with Ananias was clearly for the purpose of further enlightenment (the opening of his spiritual eyes).


Just because the scriptures tell us that Paul was an "apostle to the Nations" (Romans 11:13) (telling us the exclusive distinction of his outstanding ministry in comparison to the limitations of the other apostles), this does not exclude him as an apostle. Peter was clearly an apostle to the Jews, although not dubbed as such, due to it being a weakness Acts10:15,17,19,28,34,35,45,47; Gal.2:7,8,9,11,12,13,14)! This "favoritism" to the Jews/circumcised, did not exclude Peter as one of the twelve apostles. Neither should Paul be excluded from the twelve, because of his humble, loving care of the Gentiles/uncircumcised.



Jesus knew that all the 11 apostles had been Jews and therefore naturally avoided the Gentiles. But, by finding a man whose sins were greater than the others, yet, a man truly humble and sincere at heart, Jesus knew this Jew Saul, would seek repentance and amends so earnestly, that he alone would selflessly care for, yes...even Gentiles...the "unclean" ones of the world. Paul knew he had no basis to feel superior, as did the other 11. Jesus knew that for these other sheep to be saved, preached to, and lovingly cared for, he would need one of the apostles to be especially prepared for, and devoted to this assignment.

Now you recollect that the way these two men to replace Judas were chosen, originated with *Peter's* requisite that the candidates had to be witnesses of many of the historical details of Jesus' life. Why do you assume that Peter was viewing things the way Jehovah does? Did Jesus and Jehovah believe that this was a necessary credential? Obviously not. None of the other 11 had these credentials when Jesus chose them. Men do not see how God sees. Peter came up with that idea. It may have been based on Jesus' words, "You are the ones who have stuck with me in my trials". Was Jesus here speaking of a reward for deeds that bought them into the covenant? Or, was the attainment of these blessings through a continual faithfulness to death? Peter misunderstood (as does the society). This was NOT the requirement for apostleship. It was the reward and requirement for all anointed. If we stop and reason on this (unlike Peter), we see a few things. Jesus himself had not yet gone through his relevant trials. (see Luke22:15). Also the 11 were yet to be martyred as Christ. Only if they stuck with him through ALL his trials, would they attain the promised covenant. If you look at Luke 22:28,29,30, Jesus said, "However, you are the ones that have stuck with me in my trials; and I make a covenant with you, just as my father made a covenant with me, for a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel." 


At Rev.3:21 , the resurrected Jesus repeats this requirement, *after all opportunity to be with him on earth had passed*. He said, "To the one who conquers (future tense) I will grant to sit down with me on my throne, even as I conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne". This did not happen prior to the Lord's Evening Meal. So Peter's assumption that the apostles were chosen due to their past deeds in the physical presence of Christ, was not true. They had no history of such deeds when the 11 were chosen. He was thinking fleshly based on physical things, as other accounts show he often did. 


How could the rest of the future anointed fulfill Peter's requirement of sticking with Christ during his literal, physical life on earth? This whole reasoning is faulty, because Peter assumed Christ was referring only to the 11; not all anointed. Therefore, Peter's reasoning that this sticking with the physical presence of Christ, or witnessing physical events, was a requirement for apostleship, was not divinely inspired. It is merely an account of Peter's reasoning, and how his reasoning prompted men's decisions and actions. Why is it included in the scriptures? For the same reason other examples and lessons are included...for our learning from them. Not all scriptural examples are to be imitated. Before doing so, we must consider the results.

In reality, all anointed must follow the full course of Christ, enduring the same trials; if they hope to be sealed and inherit the promises (1Pet.2:21; Rom.6:3,5; 8:18; Luke9:23; 22:28). Paul endured Christ's trials, after Christ left the earth (Gal.6:17).

If Jesus thought that Matthias was suited to be the 12th apostle after his going away, why did he not state so? Could he not have arranged for this before leaving? If Jesus wanted him to be one of the twelve, why was he not present for the emblems after Judas left? Could not Christ have invited him to enter upon Judas' departure? Anything was possible for the Son of God. Yet, Jesus left the position vacant until he filled it with whom he thought best suited. 

So, Jesus was not really focused on the past with these words, "You are the ones who have stuck with me in my trials". He was focused on the requirements that he, as well as they and ALL anointed, would yet need to fulfill. It is in the past tense, because as with many scriptures, the past tense is used to show that the future attainment of a goal, has a history of requirements that are guaranteed to be fulfilled. If you request it, I will take the time to send you a list of such scriptural examples of this. 



The very scripture Peter quoted, first commanded that the position of 12th apostle should be left vacant...
At Acts1:20, Peter said;
“It is written in the Psalms scroll, 'Let his home become deserted and let there be no one living in it';
and
'Give his position of leadership to another.'"


After quoting this scripture in Psalms; Peter ignored the first part, and then haughtily assumed that he was the one to fulfill the second part. He assumed that he had the authority to give out that position of apostle, which he did not!




And then, as you say, they prayed for God's guidance and blessing. Well, I think we both know that this is not a guarantee that we are going to get it. We must ask according to God's will (1John5:14). Jehovah does not always bless our ignorance, let alone our presumptuousness and pride. Had they really relied on Jehovah, they would not have gone ahead without His direction. Jesus did "nothing of his own initiative" John5:30 , but only what he beheld the Father doing! At this point, these men were lacking many of the facts of spiritual realities. 


At the point that Jesus announced the covenant to the 11 (by virtue of his blood) (for a kingdom), these men had no idea there were to be 143,989 more persons taken into it. They were viewing things with a very narrow perspective. Why, they did not even realize that Jesus was going to be killed that day. Jehovah and Jesus did not require the things that Peter assumed...that to be eligible for this position, one had to be physically present with Christ. This has no basis in scripture. There are many of the apostle's mistakes and misconceptions, recorded for us within the scriptures. Only Jesus is the perfect model we are given, to follow closely (1Pet.2:21). This is merely an account, not a command by Christ. When we contemplate how these decisions turned out, it is a warning, not a model!

Paul had to go as far as "ranting", in an attempt to cut through this pride, stubbornness, and fleshly thinking 2Cor.11:12,13,16,21,22,23,31*; there is no record that he succeeded in adjusting this false reasoning. (1Tim.2:7)

As far as the prayer that was recorded in the Bible that these men said at that time, I have already commented above, about how Jehovah could have heard and viewed it. Even while asking for Jehovah to perform His will, they presumptuously went ahead and performed their own. This was a gross display of a lack of faith.


Yes, Matthias was "reckoned in with the twelve" by men. So at Acts ch6, Matthias is of course, reckoned in with them. The details of this is that the twelve men laid their hands on seven men. If Matthias did not help channel spirit to these seven, would it have been discerned? Most of the seven had two men laying hands on them, or, perhaps all twelve laid their hands upon the group of seven, all at once. There is no account of Matthias being singled out and tested for this ability.


Just because this account reckons Matthias as one of the twelve, this does not nullify the scripture which tells us that he was reckoned by men, not God. Although Paul repeatedly found it necessary to remind the brothers that he was a legitimate apostle of Christ, he humbly accepted this constant challenge to his divinely decreed authority. He was always aware of his own past wickedness, so he humbly endured this persecution. Yet he did not let this discourage him to the point of easing up his tireless activity for Jehovah.


If Jehovah ever gave witness of endorsement, as to who had his blessing as one of the twelve, it was certainly Paul. Just compare the scriptural accounts of Paul and Matthias. (Acts19:11,12) Then ask yourself who Jehovah endorsed. If you can find any scriptures as to the accomplishments of Matthias, even any accounts of him, other than being reckoned by men as one of the twelve, send them to me.) The scriptures say that Paul was an apostle. There were not 13 apostles. Gal.1:1 reads, "Paul, an apostle, neither from men nor through a man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father". Why was it necessary for him to state this? 


First and second Corinthians, Colossians, Ephesians, Titus, in fact most of the introductions of his letters, begin with him stating his credentials of apostleship as being through Christ and God. Ask yourself why this was necessary. (He also feels the need to repeatedly state and make the assertion that he is an apostle of Jesus. What is the alternative? An apostle of men?)



The day before Peter got this idea to choose the replacement, Jesus was with the apostles. This was his last visit with them before ascending. He had ample opportunity to chose Judas' replacement. Matthias was on hand. Jesus didn't choose him.
He obviously had a good reason. Jesus was waiting. This was not an oversight.

During this last visit, Jesus told Peter....Wait!
What does it mean to wait? It means to hold still until someone else gives a signal.
Then Jesus added...that the Holy Spirit would arrive just a few days from then. Acts1:4,5
Jesus told him to WAIT...until the Holy Spirit arrived. Then they would be educated and informed as to
what to do.
Did Peter obey and wait?
No, not impetuous Peter.
In the short interval between Jesus' words and the Holy Spirit's arrival just days later,
Peter decided to act on his own initiative. Acts1:15,20,21,22

It is also interesting, to look at the method Peter used to do the choosing.
"Casting lots".
This was derived from the Pagan nations around the Jews....
a form of divination (Deut.18:10).
We are told that, once the disciples received Holy Spirit, they never again resorted to this method,
to inquire of Jehovah. What does that tell us as to it's endorsement by God?

AND even in this case of the casting of lots, they left out a way for Jehovah to say, "No"!
This was a basic requirement
for this method to be considered accurate.
They only allowed two choices...either one man, or the other. 50/50.
The way Peter did this, would result in one or the other being chosen. How ridiculous for them to assume God approved of this decision rooted purely in man's initiative, which fully excluded God's right to say "Neither"! (compare 1Sam.16:9,10,11,12)

The Bible encourages us to have our "perceptive powers trained to distinguish both right, and wrong".
This means that not all things right or wrong, are apparent or clear.
But, by using trained perception, we can then discern what is right, and what is wrong....even within the actions of the apostles,
while they were still,
not only imperfect, but not yet even anointed,
or blessed with Holy Spirit.
In order to perceive things like these, it is necessary to train our perceptive abilities.

If they themselves had to be Apostles BEFORE they could choose others to anoint,
how could they possibly even attempt to choose an APOSTLE, before they themselves had even been anointed?



And so, considering all these scriptural accounts; if men reckon that they have the authority to bestow divine positions; they are mistaken. Men are neither qualified, nor sanctioned by God to do so. Therefore, unanointed men are not chosen by Holy Spirit to become elders, by other unanointed men. Only Christ assigns divine position to the anointed, or to the original twelve apostles. The scriptures make clear that he does not choose Congregational servants. If he did, no amount of meddling by men or consultation with scriptural guidelines, would be required for Holy Spirit to make such a choice.


The only scriptural accounts of the selecting of elders (see Titus1:5), clearly indicate that this selection was done by men. The suggestions of Paul are used as a guideline (1Tim.3:1-13). 
How senseless to believe that Jehovah and Christ depend on men to review a list of requisites in order to make a selection! 
The fact that they are well able to select anointed free of human interjection is indisputable proof that selection by Holy Spirit does not require the assistance of man.


There are churches that believe that their clergy can choose who the "saints" are; by these men "canonizing" those whom they think are worthy. They believe that they have the authority to force God's hand in this. 
How is this doctrine any different than believing that men can manipulate God's spirit to fill elder positions, ...also making the claim that it is divinely endorsed?


Both these doctrines have no scriptural backing. Both lies dishonor the power, ability, holy perfection, discretion, and freedom of God's spirit. In fact, it even dishonors God's very name "Jehovah", which means that he can do whatever he pleases to accomplish His purpose, without consulting or depending upon the hindering limitations of corruptible man.


It is wrong to ascribe to men, Godlike power. That is what we are doing when we believe that these ones can direct and control Holy Spirit to choose men, through them. God's Word never indicates that this is the case. Any positions that result, are as the scriptures themselves declare, "reckoned" by men, not God.


Only Christ and the apostles channeled Holy Spirit and it's selection of men.


Today, it is one thing or the other.....
Either a choice is made by God, through his spirit; 
(which requires no human assistance)
or, 
a choice is made by men, who are guided by scriptural advice.


It is clear that there is no scriptural basis to claim that elders are spirit appointed. Requesting in prayer that Jehovah's will be done through the choices of men, and assuming (as Peter did) that this makes it so, is at best a flimsy basis for faith or doctrine. 
Men cannot force God's choice.
What matters most, is that there is no scriptural basis for this doctrine. 
The results of this presumptuous error, speak for themselves.




-----------------------UPDATE------------------------



Good morning Sister Doxsey, me again.


Could you please explain if the elder arrangement is scriptural and if yes, how was it to be used within the congregations and how that differs from the present arrangement within the Jehovah's Witnesses.


Secondly, the chosen ones do they have to satisfy the requirements laid down in 1Tim 3 for overseers or do they qualify automatically based on them being anointed?


Thirdly, the answer to this one could be linked to the first, were the elders or rather the overseers to be in subjection to the chosen ones in that the elders were supposed to work hand in hand with the chosen ones in shepherding the sheep?


Thank you


Hello Xxxx :)
As you have noted, the elder arrangement is based upon the requirements put forth at 1Tim3.
It would seem, based upon the scriptures, that there were both anointed, and non-anointed disciples of Christ in the first Century; just as there have always been both sorts since that time.


I believe that the service of elder was open to non-anointed. If this were not the case, the requirement of anointment would have been included.
It should be noted however, that not all scriptural references and directives to shepherds, were written to both sorts. When speaking of those appointed by Holy Spirit, the Bible is referring to anointed ones.


To read about the scriptures that disprove the spirit-appointment of non-anointed elders, please see the article located at pearl-whowasthetwelfthapostle.blogspot.com
(The "Society" uses the example of the apostolic appointment of Matthias, to prove that men are channels of Holy Spirit, for the purpose of such appointments. That article examines this doctrine, and proves that non-anointed elders are not spirit appointed.)


The requirements listed at 1Tim3 would be expected of both, to answer your second question, since being anointed is not a guarantee of continued faithfulness and fitness.




If I understand your questions clearly, it seems we need to cover:


Are elders really appointed by Holy Spirit? (see article mentioned above)
What was the proper relationship between elders and anointed ones?
Is the present role of elders in harmony with scripture?




The role of elders in the Congregation was to care for the needs of the Flock, seeking to alleviate any anxieties, burdens, or pressures upon them. Yet, anointed or not, elders are unable to do this perfectly in this religious system of things. Only in the system to come, will the needs of the flock be cared for as declared at Isa.32:1,2:
"Look! A king WILL REIGN for righteousness itself; and as respects princes, they will rule as princes for justice itself. 2 And each one must prove to be like a hiding place from the wind and a place of concealment from the rainstorm, like streams of water in a waterless country, like the shadow of a heavy crag in an exhausted land."


This prophesy applies to the Thousand Year reign of Christ and his brothers. These anointed ones are the "princes" that will reign over all Christ's belongings. To see that scripturally, please consider these two scriptures:


Matt.24:45-47 reads:
“Who really is the faithful and discreet slave whom his master appointed over his domestics, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. 47 Truly I say to YOU, He will APPOINT HIM over all HIS BELONGINGS.


Do you see that this is speaking of ANOINTED ONES?
Do you see what their reward will be ?


They will be "APPOINTED OVER ALL JESUS' BELONGINGS".


DURING THE KINGDOM, what will Jesus' belongings be, over which the 144,000 will be appointed?
Since the purpose of their appointment is to restore the creation to perfection, that kingly appointment, will be "upon the earth" (Rev.5:10). Christ does not yet rule upon ALL THE EARTH.
Knowing this, let us take note of what those 144,000 who are appointed over all the earth during the kingdom, are called.


In pointing ahead to the Kingdom of Christ and his bride, Psalm 45:16 says:
"In place of your forefathers there will come to be your sons,
Whom you will appoint as princes in all the earth."


In imitation of the "PRINCE of Peace" (Isa.9:6), the anointed appointed over ALL Christ's Millennial belongings on earth, are like Christ the king,  also  called  "princes" (Psalm45:16).


Despite current doctrine, these ambassadors of the Kingdom, are the "princes" that will "rule" for justice (Isa 32:1,2); NOT the elders of today.


These ones are Jesus' sons, because Jesus GIVES THESE LIFE through the ransom, at the first resurrection (Rev.20:5,6; Eph.1:3-7), they are HIS firstborn sons (Rev.14:4) previous to their adoption in heaven by Jehovah, of which adoption they are currently still WAITING for (Rom.8:23,24,25).
The anointed must be free of corruption, before this adoption (1Tim.6:16; 1Cor.15:42) by Jehovah takes place.


For all the scriptures that prove this, see the article pearl-psalm45.blogspot.com, which is currently under construction and should be released shortly.


Only during the Kingdom rule of Christ (who is spoken of as being both, King and Prince-Isa.9:6) and his perfected 144,000; will the princes as mentioned in Isa.32:1,2 progressively fulfill the perfect restoration of comfort and joy to all creation (Rom.8:19). 
This scripture has been misapplied to elders today. Until this appointment of the Kingdom heirs/princes over the entire earth (all Christ's belongings), the sheep will still have to carry their own load, despite the presence of elders (Gal.6:5). Yet if these elders truly are a loving example to the flock, they will do their best to ease that load. In this system, they are not able to totally remove it. This will be the job of the 144,000 princes.
[The scriptural proof that these will be in the earth during Judgement Day (as Jesus was on earth Rev.21:2) will also be covered in the psalm45 article. But for now, this article examines what the scriptures indicate-- http://jacobsladder-obadiah.blogspot.com/)  Gen.28:12,14; Heb.1:6; John1:51; Rev.22:3]


It is important that we do not misinterpret the Bible regarding who the "princes" really are, as well as when they actually appear. 
Non-anointed elders are not considered by Jehovah, as spiritual Jews/Levites/priests/princes.
To ascribe the traits of the Millennial Kings to imperfect non-anointed elders now, is a grave error!
Why?
In times past, Jehovah always condemned his people for making "priests for themselves" to serve in his holy temple sanctuary (2Chron.13:9).
One prophecy about our time of the end, talks about a "disgusting thing standing in a holy place" (Matt.24:15), as well as the earthly courtyard of Jehovah's temple worship, as being "given to the Nations" Rev.11:1,2.


A deeper study into this, reveals that it is a grave error, to confuse these two very different groups....anointed kings/priests/princes/spiritual Jews/spirit chosen/circumcised of heart;  with  
spiritual "gentiles/of the "Nations" elders/uncircumcised of heart. (Ezek.44:7,8,9; Rom.2:29)


In Jehovah's eyes, it is not permissible to substitute one for the other. Yet today, this is what has occurred.


The misinterpretation of the previous scriptures (Psalm45:16; Isa.32:1,2), are the reason for this grave error. It is assumed that these future "princes" who are to rule in all the earth; are the spiritual gentiles/elders of today.
Yet the Bible makes clear, that this "appointment in all the earth/appointed over all Christ's belongings; is reserved only for the anointed, who prove faithful (Matt.24:47). This appointment has not yet occurred. Many yet need to be sealed. This appointment over all the earth, is the Thousand Year Reign of Christ and the 144000.


Because of this misapplication of scripture, not only are these spiritual Gentiles unlawfully serving today in the midst of the anointed "temple"....
they have thrown out the priests that Jehovah himself has "chosen" (2Chron.13:9).


A similar mistake arose in the first century.
Note what 1Cor.6:2-5 says:


 "Or do YOU not know that the holy ones will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by YOU, are YOU unfit to try very trivial matters? 3 Do YOU not know that we shall judge angels? Why, then, not matters of this life? 4 If, then, YOU do have matters of this life to be tried, is it the men looked down upon in the congregation that YOU put in as judges? 5 I am speaking to move YOU to shame."


Here we see that it is not truthful to subject the anointed Holy Ones under the feet of spiritual Gentiles; even if they are serving as elders. 
The tender care and judging of Jehovah's sheep, is primarily the responsibility of the Holy Ones. The elders are to assist them in this. 
It is not proper in Jehovah's eyes, that these non-anointed take this responsibility away from, and dominate, the Holy Ones. 
This is, in a very real sense; God's people making their own priests for themselves. 
Jehovah views the crowns of authority that have been placed on the Gentile elder's heads, as counterfeit (see Rev.9:7) and as stolen (Rev.9:21)
(pearl-revelation9.blogspot.com). Chapter 9 of the book of Revelation, prophesied about this end-time development.




But is this idea of elders as serving the anointed, indicated in the scriptures?


While there are many scriptures that indicate this, I will offer these two:


Heb.6:10 "For God is not unrighteous so as to forget YOUR work and the love YOU showed for his name, in that YOU have ministered to the holy ones and continue ministering." (1Cor.16:15)


These "Holy Ones" are the Heirs:


 Eph.1:18 "the eyes of YOUR heart having been enlightened (1John2:20,27), that YOU may know what is the hope to which he called YOU, what the glorious riches are which he holds as an inheritance FOR THE HOLY ONES."




(The society says that the "holy ones", are the Gentile elders.)
(They also teach that the "angels" of the 7 Congregations, as well as the "stars" in Jesus' right hand, are the Gentile elders.)
This is against Bible Truth. It is also easily proven that these heavenly light-bearing "stars", as well as Christ's "angel" messengers, are the anointed. But that is the subject of yet a different article.
(To see WT articles that corrupt the truth about the proper place of elders, and the role of anointed...see http://www.silentlambs.org/obeyelders.htm )




In reality, the judgement of all, is wholly dependent on how one treats these "holy ones"...the "least of" Christ's "brothers".
This is clearly evident at Matt.25:31-46
verses 45 and 46 read:
 "Then he will answer them with the words, ‘Truly I say to YOU, To the extent that YOU did not do it to one of these least ones, YOU did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will depart into everlasting cutting-off, but the righteous ones into everlasting life.”


It is primarily the heavy responsibility of the anointed slaves, to preach the truth, and to care for Christ's sheep (2Cor.8:4; 2Cor.9:1; John21:15-17; Matt.24:45-47). The anointed are also to care for and feed one another (1Cor.10:17; 12:4,25,27). 


According to Jehovah's original arrangement, the elders are to assist these chosen priests of His. Non-anointed elders are referred to as having the "obedience of faith among all the nations respecting his name". Note that in these same verses, the "holy ones" are AMONG (not the same as) these obedient and faithful of the Nations...


Rom.1:4-7:
 "but who with power was declared God’s Son according to the spirit of holiness by means of resurrection from the dead—yes, Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we received undeserved kindness and an apostleship in order that there might be , obedience of faith among all the nations respecting his name, 6 AMONG which [nations] YOU also are those called to belong to Jesus Christ— 7 to all those who are in Rome as God’s beloved ones, called to be holy ones".


1Cor.1:1,2:
"Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through God’s will, and Sos´the·nes our brother 2 to the congregation of God that is in Corinth, to YOU who have been sanctified in union with Christ Jesus, called to be holy ones, TOGETHER WITH all who everywhere are calling upon the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ, THEIR LORD AND OURS".




So hopefully I have answered all your current questions about elders and Holy Ones; 
the scriptural difference;
and how these should relate, one to the other.


It should now also be clear, how these God-approved arrangements, differ from what we see today.
I hope the scriptures and their application to this subject, are clear.


If I have neglected any part of your question, please send it to me again.


Jehovah bless your search for truth,
pearl




LINK TO HOME




Excellent article of interest:
http://www.friendsofjehovahswitnesses.com/2010/12/who-replaced-judas-as-the-twelfth-apostle/comment-page-1/#comment-5507

ADDITION:

This addition is taken from a December post on the Main Page. I am adding it to this article because of it's relevance to elders...
It is my reply to a follow up question about elders.


FOLLOW-UP QUESTION:



Hello Sister Doxsey,
The CO is arriving next week and I was getting-up a letter for him in regards to the merge I spoke to you earlier about. I just wanted to make sure I had all my thoughts in order.
This move they are making has already started to stumble a few of the weaker ones in the congregation. Our English attendance is down 35%. If this continues and people leave the truth; can the Elders be guilty of blood guilt? Also, newer ones in the truth (like me) now have nothing we can reach out for in the congregation. Most of us have no desire to learn a new lanuage, especially one as hard as Thai. It has taken me this long to finally get enjoyment out of going out in service and going to the meetings. I go out 4 times a week, my wife goes out 2 times per week. The door to door ministry here in Thailand is so fantastic. You never run into a rude person. (Thai) Even the foreigners seem to be more congenial. Since being baptized, I have never missed a meeting and have never missed field service. I love Jehovah so much and I don't want to see the English group broken up.
 Thanks for listening and I'm all ears for any more suggestions.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------


Dear Xxx,
You said,
"If this continues and people leave the truth; can the Elders be guilty of blood-guilt?"

I must have been negligent in my past answers, because by asking this question, it is evident that you did not understand the things I have already written to you. I am going to ask you to try and peer into, not the physical, but the spiritual realm.
Perhaps it will help if I use an illustration...
                                                    ************************
Imagine that two disturbed addicts have a number of their children living with them.
They are self-centered, negligent, and the lives of the children are in peril every day.
In addition, the father has uncontrolled rage, and takes hallucinogenic drugs.
He is abusive without restraint, and it is only a matter of time before his toddlers are killed.
The food the children eat is spoiled, rotten, and toxic.
Their growth is stunted, and their senses are being dulled...
their eyes are becoming blind...their ears losing their ability to hear.
The wounds of the children remain untended and they fester.
The parents don't even notice when a child is missing for days.
The children know deep down, that they are not safe, loved, or cared for.

Now also imagine that a neighbor of these addicts wishes to adopt the children.
If they took them into their care, the original parents would not even notice.
They see the potential of each child, and ache over their suffering and neglect.
This couple is honorable, industrious, loving and caring.
They have prepared their home to be a cheerful, rich environment which encourages the growth and development of each child's potential. The entire home and it's provisions, is centered around the needs and happiness of those children.
Yet this good couple have noted the natural attachment that the children have to their perilous parents. They hope that this will not prevent the children from making a wise, life-saving choice.
                                                     ***********************
If the children remain with their natural parents and then die, do you think that the original parents are innocent of any wrongdoing?
If the children leave their toxic, perilous home and treacherous parents,
and are brought into the haven prepared for them,
do you think that the natural parents THEN become guilty of killing the children?

This is essentially the question you are asking me.
You are not kept in "the truth of life" by remaining under the "care" and in the "pen" of those shepherds who are abusing and killing God's flock (Jer.23:1).
You are not "leaving the truth of life" if you escape spiritual death at the hand of these spiritual murderers.
                                                                    *******

You may think this illustration is too severe, and that to ascribe such terrible traits to the Elders of the Organization is a lie. You are not alone. Most are blind to the true effect that these false priest-leaders are having upon God's anointed flock spiritually.
This is because most are blind to what God's will is for His sheep. This makes them unable to make a comparison... between the elder's expectations and directives, and the expectations and directives of God.
When the wide difference between these becomes understood, the deadly spiritual damage being caused by "elders", becomes perceptible.

God demands exclusive devotion (Exo.20:5).
The elders demand devotion to the Image of an Organization (Rev.13:15).
God demands that each anointed one shine whatever portion of light Holy Spirit has given them (Matt.5:16; John15:8).
The elders demand that this light be hidden, and replaced with the shining forth of lying doctrines (Rev.13:17,18) (pearl-666.blogspot.com).
God demands that ones sacrifices be "in secret", so that only God is glorified (Matt.6:3,4; John7:18; 8:50)
The elders demand that sacrifices be counted, and the givers be publicly acknowledged (1Chron.21:1; Matt.6:1,2).
God demands that the "brothers of Christ" be supported, loved, and respected as a part of God's own feeding arrangement (Matt.25:40,43,46; Heb.6:10; John15:5; 2Cor.5:20).
Elders demand that the "brothers of Christ" be subject to them (Rev.13:15,8; 2Thess.2:4; 1Cor.3:16; Eph.2:21,22). Any who do not submit are to be condemned. Any who do not join in this elder subjection (and the image of the Organization which these represent), and help them to persecute Christ's brothers, are also condemned and expelled (Rev.13:15).

God demands that we worship in spirit and truth...obeying Holy Spirit and God's Word (John4:24; Rom.8:14; John17:17).
Elders demand that anointed personally ignore Scripture, Holy Spirit, and their anointed calling into the body of Christ, in order to worship them and the doctrines of the unfaithful Harlot (1Cor.6:15,16; Rev.17:2; 2:20). [the "kings of the earth" who are "fornicating" with the "Harlot", are those "kings" which should belong to Christ-- Rev.1:5,6; 5:10 ---These are not kings of Satan's political world-- John18:36; 1John5:19]

Rev.9 provides a rich description of Elders and their place in Satan's final deception (2Thess.2:9).

These locust/scorpions will be to blame for the spiritual deaths of millions, as well as thousands of anointed....all because of their assumptive pride...that they are above God's Chosen priests, and have the right to dominate, persecute, and "kill" them (2Chron.13:9)...all because the Harlot/Wormwood/false prophet  above them, has decreed the authority of their false "crowns". Rev.9:7,3,10; Isa.23:8; Eze.44:6,7,8,9; John16:2; Rev.13:15)
It is in no way an exaggeration, to describe the "harmful" spiritual sting from these locust/scorpions, as paralyzing, excruciatingly painful, and deadly.

I am hoping that you can see from this "family" illustration,
that those who remain in the Congregation, under the "care" of the elders,
are NOT "IN THE TRUTH", but are under the "covenant of death", "Babylon the Great"...
and are heading for certain spiritual death. [Rev.9:3,7,10,11; 13:7,8,4,11,12,14,15,16,17; 16:10,13,15; 17:1,2,5,6,15; 18:4,20,24; Isa.28:15; (Rev.9:1) (pearl-winepress.blogspot.com) (pearl-revelation9.blogspot.com)

The Organization of elders is ALREADY blood-guilty in Jehovah's eyes (Rev.13:7,8; 11:7; 1John3:15; 4:20). So is the anointed "Harlot" leaders over that Organizational Beast (Rev.13:11; 17:6,15; 18:23,24), who sanctioned their authority (Isa.23:8 see Hebrew or NIV). The elders are the prophetic "Man of Lawlessness" (2Thess.2:3,4), and are NOW responsible for the spiritual deaths of all those under their "care" (2Thess.2:9,10,11,12; Rev.13:8). They are the "image of jealousy" in Eze.8:3,5 Eze.8:6  that has trespassed into Jehovah's sanctuary. That "Image" is "in the entrance" of the North Gate, because it blocks the priests from entering.
 When Jehovah executes His final judgement and this world ends (2Pet.3:10,12,11; 1Pet.4:7; 1John2:17), the elders will be responsible for the deaths of those they mislead. They are the "disgusting thing standing in a holy place".
These spiritual Gentiles have dared to presume that they can "kill" Jehovah's hand-picked priests, and substitute them within God's priestly Temple.
Even literally...Elders have caused (and continue to cause) millions to leave off exclusive devotion to Jehovah.
Many have been stumbled and left and idea of a loving God completely...because of cruelty, hardheartedness, injustice, abuse, and outright wickedness...on the part of elders. Those stumbled have left Jehovah, believing that these wicked are His representatives. I know of instances of literal death....suicide that resulted from the evil actions of "Elders"! Yet this is nothing, compared to the mass murder happening spiritually....as these agents of Satan's abyss lead all those bearing God's name "Jehovah", into the Winepress of God's wrath.....locusts who eventually devour every "green thing" in which the potential for life resides (Rev.7:3; 9:4; Jer.51:27,14; 46:23; Deut.28:42; Joel1:1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10; Nahum3:16; Hab.1:6,8,10; Ec.10:7; Prov.19:10; Jer.5:26,27,28,29,30,31).


Also to be soberly considered, is how many invited anointed are prodded into unfaithful failure.....delaying the Kingdom's arrival,
by strangling the collecting of the full number. These symbolically block entry into the Temple of God,
by the priests that belong to it (1Cor.3:16; Eph.2:21,22; 1Pet.2:5) (2Thess.2:3,4).

 Rev.9:4,5

Those who escape from this Organization and it's representative "elders", are not "leaving the Truth"!
....they are escaping certain judgment and death! (Rev.13:8,9)

Any who do escape the clutches of this Counterfeit kingdom of God,
have waiting for them "outside", other anointed who are working diligently to provide
spiritual food untainted by the corruption of the Organization's deadly doctrines (Heb.13:13; Luke17:31,32,33,35,36,37; Matt.24:15,16,28; Rev.12:14,6; 11:3; Luke10:19; Eze.2:6).

In the end, it is up to each "child" to decide.
Will a twisted sense of loyalty cause you to "look back" (Like Lot's wife), and die?
(Matt.24:40; Luke17:32; Rev.18:4; Mark13:15; Matt.24:18)...
Or will you perceive Jehovah's will for you....truth and life,
and flee before it is too late? (2Pet.3:9; Eze.33:11; 1Tim.2:3,4; Rev.2:21; Zeph.2:1,2,3; Eze.18:23; Matt.24:15,16; Eze.36:8)



I hope you are able to perceive the answer to your question regarding the real Blood-guilt of the elders.
It is not over those who leave...it is over those who remain!
This discernment certainly means your life!

It is commendable that you are making sacrifices to try and serve God.
But if you are serving Him according to the direction and arrangements of apostate impostors,
your efforts to please God, are wasted. (Rom.10:1,2,3; Matt.7:22,23; Matt.25:11,12; 1Cor.10:20)
You MUST serve God in spirit and Truth, according to God's will. (John4:24; 1John2:17; Matt.7:21)
You can not slave for two masters. You must decide if you are brave enough to follow
in the footsteps of Christ's example....or will you let apostate men direct you to death instead?
The elders are not God's means of salvation....
the faithful chosen anointed priests are Jehovah's genuine slaves (Rev.14:1; 22:3; 7:3),
chosen by Him to be channels of the "living water" of life (2Cor.5:20; John4:14; 1Tim.4:16; Matt.24:45).
There is no other provision....only Christ and his priests (John14:6; John15:5; 1Pet.2:5,9; Matt.5:14; Dan.12:3; Rev.1:20)

Death does not await those who leave the Organization, Congregations, and Elders.
That belief is Satan's final "last day" lie; embellished with "signs" and "portents".
Death awaits those who stay inside, under the Covenant of Death, "Babylon the Great" (Rev.18:4).
[Just as it was the same, when Jerusalem was destroyed in 70CE. (Luke21:20; Hab.1:4,5)]
This IS the Great Tribulation (Rev.3:3; 2Pet.3:10; 1Thess.5:1,2,3,4; Matt.24:5,11,13,21,24,25,35).

I am here for you if you are open to considering your alternatives.
Please, I beg you to wake up, and live.



              



3 comments:

  1. Thank you for your blessed effort in using the scriptures in overturning reasonings and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God. I greet you with a holy kiss.

    Praise Jah

    ReplyDelete
  2. Good day Sister D

    I have just review this article and can you please advise - how were the elders supposed to be chosen as per Jehovah's holy word? and secondly by who, the apostles, or the elders already serving guided by the requirements as listed in the bible?

    Well i hope that makes sense.

    Many thanks
    Modise

    ReplyDelete
  3. Dear Modise,
    I am going to read the scriptures in God's Word that pertain to "overseers". There are about 45 of them. Also, I will study the scriptures which refer to "elders". Just the little I found thus far is surprising, in what they reveal. I will also pray about this important question. It may take me a few days to get through this. I don't usually do research, but in this case, I will consult the relevant scriptures with diligence, and see what Jehovah reveals through them, combined with spirit. Thank you for an excellent question. I expect it will help uncover some new ideas.
    Love in Christ,
    Pearl

    ReplyDelete