(WDGR Lesson 5: “What Is God’s Purpose for the Earth?”)
How realistic is the Watchtower plan of salvation? What does a person have to do in order to be assured of eternal life?1.
KAREN: Hello Cindy! I’ve been reading over our next lesson in the Watchtower brochure, What Does God Require of Us?, and I am fascinated by the prospect of eternal life forever in paradise. I can’t wait to learn more about how I can have this hope.
CINDY: That’s great, Karen! Do you know why the earth is not a paradise now?
KAREN: Yes, Cindy, the brochure notes that “Adam and Eve sinned by deliberately breaking God’s law. So Jehovah put them out of the garden of Eden. Paradise was lost.” 2.
CINDY: That’s right, Karen, and “before this earth can become a paradise, wicked people must be removed.…This will happen at Armageddon, which is God’s war to end wickedness. Next, Satan will be imprisoned for 1,000 years. This means that no wicked ones will be left to spoil the earth. Only God’s people will survive.”3. Would you like to be one of those people who survive into this new system of things, Karen?
KAREN: Yes, I would, Cindy, but I don’t understand. What exactly do I need to do in order to be saved and have eternal life?
CINDY: Well the Bible says at John 17:3: “This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ.” So you see, Karen, if “you would like to share in these future blessings…you need to keep learning about Jehovah and obeying his requirements.”4.
KAREN: O.K, Cindy, after I do that, then what do I need to do?
CINDY: What do you mean Karen?
KAREN: Well, do I need to join your religion?
CINDY: Yes! You want to be in the truth so that you won’t be destroyed with the wicked of false religion. So, yes, you do need to become one of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
KAREN: If I do that, then am I saved?
CINDY: No, Karen, the Bible says you must endure to the “end” in order to be saved5.
KAREN: What do you mean by “end,” Cindy? Do you mean Armageddon?
KAREN: O.K. so if I endure through Armageddon, then am I saved?
KAREN: I’m in this perfect world but I’m not saved? Am I perfect?
CINDY: Not yet, Karen.
KAREN: Well, is anybody perfect?
CINDY: No, Karen. When Jesus Christ rules as “King over this earth… He will gradually take sin away from our minds and bodies.” Then “we will become perfect humans just as Adam and Eve were before they sinned.”6.
KAREN: So, how long do I have to go without sinning before I can be saved, Cindy?
CINDY: A thousand years Karen. “During Jesus’ Thousand Year Reign, faithful humans will work to turn the whole earth into a paradise.…If they do what God requires of them, they will continue to live on earth forever. If not, they will be destroyed forever.”7.
KAREN: Wait a minute! I’m not perfect and nobody else is perfect and I have to go a thousand years without making a major mistake?
CINDY: That’s right, Karen. This is why it is so important that we learn what Jehovah requires.
KAREN: But can you do that, Cindy? Can you go a thousand years without making a major mistake even though you are not perfect?
CINDY: I don’t know if I can, Karen. But I’m sure going to try!
KAREN: But what if I go 999 years without making a major mistake, but in the last year just before the test I mess up. Or what if under the pressure of Satan, I fail the final test?8. Does this mean I will be destroyed forever?
CINDY: Maybe, Karen. In the August 1, 1992 Watchtower, the Society said: “ ‘If anyone wants to come after me,’ said Jesus Christ to a gathering of disciples and others, ‘let him disown himself…and follow me continually.’ (Mark 8:34) When we accept this invitation, we must be prepared to do so ‘continually,’ not because there is some special merit in self-denial, but because one moment’s indiscretion, one lapse in good judgment, may undo all that has been built up, even jeopardizing our eternal welfare. Spiritual progress is usually made at a rather slow pace, but how quickly it can be nullified if we are not on guard constantly!”9.
KAREN: So is the Society saying that if I make even one major mistake, I will be destroyed forever?
CINDY: That is the chance you’ll take Karen.
KAREN: But how can anyone pass the test and not make a major mistake if he is not perfect?
CINDY: I don’t know, Karen. It seems impossible, but this is what Jehovah requires.
CINDY: Yes, Karen?
KAREN: Did Jesus pay for all of our sins when He died two thousand years ago, or did He just pay for some of them?
CINDY: Oh, he paid for all of them, Karen.
KAREN: So, if Jesus paid for all of our sins, exactly what sin can I commit that He did not pay for and which would cause me to lose my eternal life?
Friends, John said at 1 John 5:11-13: “And this is the witness given, that God gave us everlasting life, and this life is in his Son. He that has the Son has this life; he that does not have the Son of God does not have this life. I write YOU these things that YOU may know that You have life everlasting, You who put YOUR faith in the name of the Son of God.”10.
1. In this dialogue, Karen does not get into a discussion with Cindy about the differences between the Jehovah’s Witness view of the afterlife being life on paradise earth instead of heaven and annihilation for the wicked instead of hell because her sole purpose in this dialogue is to demonstrate to Cindy the impossibility of gaining salvation through the Watchtower system of works. Note: Most of the content of this dialogue was taken from the book entitled The Armageddon Cult—Life in the Watchtower Society Nothing Right!!!, by Daniel LeEarl Hall, pp. 140-141, 2000, Reveal Ministries
2.What Does God Require of Us?, 1996, p. 10:3
3. What Does God Require of Us?, p. 10:4
4. What Does God Require of Us?, p. 11:7
5. Matthew 24:13
6. What Does God Require of Us?, p. 11:5
7. What Does God Require of Us?, p. 11:6
8. See Life Does Have A Purpose, 1977, p. 177 and Life Everlasting in Freedom of the Sons of God, p. 400
9. The Watchtower August 1, 1992, p. 17
10. New World Translation