MY JEHOVAH’S WITNESS AUNT IS FIGHTING CANCER AND IS VERY FEARFUL. HOW CAN I HELP HER?
“My aunt has been a Jehovah’s Witness for over 30 years and is battling with cancer. She is extremely fearful. I have experienced this cancer battle with my husband. We are both Christians who believe that the Bible is an open book to us as God speaks to us through it. What is my aunt facing relative to being a Jehovah’s Witness with cancer? How does a Jehovah’s Witness cope when she is faced with life threatening news? I’d like to know if she is able to obtain peace and comfort through her reading of the Bible and how this can be accomplished if its words are primarily for the 144,000? I hope that you can help me and pray for my aunt, not so much for her physical recovery, but for her spiritual deliverance.”
We are happy to hear of your desire to reach out to your Jehovah’s Witness aunt who is struggling with cancer. You are right that the Jehovah’s Witness view of the Bible is unique as they discount many of the verses dealing with the New Covenant due to the Watchtower Society’s teaching that these privileges apply primarily to a select group of 144,000 people (most of which have already been appointed). Thus, since there is a good chance your aunt does not believe she is in this group, she does not believe she will go to heaven after death, but rather, she hopes she has been a good enough Jehovah’s Witness to be resurrected to live in Paradise here on earth when Jesus returns to setup His Millennial Kingdom. Thus, your aunt and many other Jehovah’s Witnesses who face life-threatening illnesses turn to the Biblical books of Psalms and Job for comfort. Since they do not believe that God heals people today, they do not pray for healing, but rather for strength to endure the health trials they face. For more information on why Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe in healing, see this article on our website:
You can comfort your aunt by sharing verses on the resurrection (which she believes apply to her) as well as verses that speak of the joys one will face when sin and death are removed from the earth through the reign of Jesus Christ. Since these beliefs are in agreement with the Jehovah’s Witness worldview, she will gladly receive your encouragement.
You can also use this as a springboard to share the hope you have in knowing your eternal life is secure in Christ. Do not try to preach to her by telling her what you believe, but rather, ask her questions about her beliefs and what she has to do to be confident that Jehovah will accept her and grant her eternal life after death. Ask her how much work she has to do to be assured of eternal life and when this assurance is granted. She will have a hard time answering these questions, but as she struggles with these, you will begin to see the source of her fears and you can pray the Lord will open a door where she will ask you what you believe about this so that you can share how you found Jesus to be 100% sufficient for your righteous standing before Jehovah. The following articles on our website will guide you in this process:
For more information see:
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