Officially known as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, the
Jehovah's Witnesses are a product of the life work of Charles
Taze Russell, born February 16, 1852, near Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania. In 1870, while still in his teens and without
formal theological education, Russell organized a Bible class
whose members eventually made him "pastor".
In 1879 he founded the magazine Zion's Watchtower in which he
published his own unique interpretation of the Bible, and in
1886, the first volume of seven books (six written by Russell)
entitled The Millennial Dawn was published (later retitled
Studies in the Scriptures).
By the time of his death in 1916, "Pastor" Russell,
according to the Watchtower, traveled more than a million miles,
gave more than thirty thousand sermons, and wrote books totaling
over fifty thousand pages (Qualified to be Ministers, Anon.,
1955, p. 310).
Joseph F. Rutherford
A few months after the death of Charles Taze Russell, the
society's legal counselor, Joseph Franklin Rutherford, became the
second President of the Watchtower Society. It was under his
leadership that the name "Jehovahs Witnesses" was
adopted. Rutherford not only moved the Society's headquarters to
Brooklyn, he also moved toward "theocratic" control
with the power to make all policy decisions.
Rutherford died in 1942 and was succeeded by Nathan H. Knorr. It
was during Knorr's presidency that the society increased from
115,000 to over two million members. In 1961, under Knorr's
leadership, the society produced its own English translation of
the Bible entitled The New World Translation of Holy Scriptures.
When Knorr died in 1977, Frederick W. Franz became the new
president of the Watchtower and is currently conducting business
in Knorr's manner. Franz was the spokesman for the translation
committee of the New World Translation.
Claims of the Jehovah's Witnesses
Today, worldwide, the Jehovah's Witnesses number over two
million. The members are zealous and sincere and claim to accept
the Bible as their only authority. However, their theology denies
every cardinal belief of historic Christianity including the
Trinity, the divinity of Jesus Christ, His bodily resurrection,
salvation by grace through faith, and eternal punishment of the
"Pastor" Russell, not known for his humility, made the
following statement, "Be it known that no other system of
theology even claims, or has ever attempted to harmonize in
itself every statement of the Bible, yet nothing short of this
can we claim" (Charles Taze Russell Studies in the
Scriptures, 1:348). The Watchtower has this to say about itself:
It is God's sole collective channel for the flow of Biblical
truth to men on earth (The Watchtower, July 15, 1960, p. 439).
The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society is the greatest
corporation in the world, because from the time of its
organization until now the Lord has used it as His channel
through which to make known the glad tidings (The Watchtower,
1917, p. 22, quoted in Studies in the Scriptures, p. 144).
F.W. Franz, president of the Watchtower, relaying how their
interpretations come from God, stated, "They are passed to
the Holy Spirit who invisibly communicates with Jehovah's
Witnesses - and the Publicity Department" (Scottish Daily
Express, November 24, 1954).
We conclude from these statements that the Watchtower believes
itself to be the organization that speaks for God in today's
world. Note the following statement by "Pastor"
If the six volumes of "Scripture Studies" are
practically the Bible, topically arranged with Bible proof texts
given, we might not improperly name the volumes "the Bible
in an arranged form," that is to say, they are not mere
comments on the Bible, but they are practically the Bible itself.
Furthermore, not only do we find that people cannot see the
divine plan in studying the Bible by itself, but we see, also,
that if anyone lays the Scripture Studies aside, even after he
has used them, after he has become familiar with them, after he
has read them for ten years - if he then lays them aside and
ignores them and goes to the Bible alone, though he has
understood his Bible for ten years, our experience shows that
within two years he goes into darkness. On the other hand, if he
had merely read the Scripture Studies with their references and
had not read a page of the Bible as such, he would be in the
light at the end of two years, because he would have the light of
the Scriptures (Charles Taze Russell, The Watchtower, September
15, 1910, p. 298).
Source of Authority
There are no "articles of faith" or authoritative
doctrinal statements issued by the Watchtower. Their theological
views are found in their various publications, including The
Watchtower and Awake. The doctrine that proceeds from these works
is considered authoritative.
They contend their ultimate source of authority is the Bible:
To let God be found true means to let God have the say as to what
is the truth that sets men free. It means to accept His Word, the
Bible, as the truth. Hence, in this book, our appeal is to the
Bible for the truth. Our obligation is to back up what is said
herein by quotations from the Bible for proof of truthfulness and
reliability (Let God Be True, 1946, p. 9).
Although the Watchtower contends that the Scriptures are their
final authority, we find they constantly misuse the Scriptures to
establish their own peculiar beliefs. This is accomplished
chiefly by quoting texts out of context while omitting other
passages relevant to the subject. For all practical purposes
their publications take precedence over the Scriptures.
The Watchtower makes it clear they do not believe in the doctrine
of the Trinity. "The trinity doctrine was not conceived by
Jesus or the early Christians" (Let God Be True, 1952, p.
111). "The plain truth is that this is another of Satan's
attempts to keep the God-fearing person from learning the truth
of Jehovah and His Son Christ Jesus" (Let God Be True, p.
In Watchtower theology neither Jesus Christ nor the Holy Spirit
In the theological system of the Jehovah's Witnesses, Jesus
Christ is not God in human flesh, but rather a created being.
"Jesus, the Christ, a created individual, is the second
greatest personage of the Universe. Jehovah God and Jesus
together constitute the superior authorities" (Make Sure of
All Things, p. 207).
. . ."He was a god, but not the Almighty God, who is
Jehovah" (Let God Be True, p. 33).
"If Jesus were God, then during Jesus' death God was dead in
the grave" (Let God Be True, 1946, p. 91).
"The truth of the matter is that the word is Christ Jesus,
who did have a beginning" (Let God Be True, p. 88).
The denial of the deity of Christ is nothing new in the history
of the Church. It is a revival of the ancient heresy known as
Arianism (named after the fourth century A.D. heretic Arius.)
Arianism teaches that the Son was of a substance different than
the Father and was, in fact, created).
To the Jehovah's Witnesses, Jesus is not equal to Jehovah God. He
was rather, Michael the Archangel in his preexistent state,
having a brother named Lucifer who rebelled against God while he
(known then as Michael) remained obedient (see J. Rutherford, The
Kingdom Is At Hand, p. 49).
During his earthly existence Michael was transformed into a man:
"The life of the Son of God was transferred from his
glorious position with God his Father in Heaven to the embryo of
a human" (Let God Be True, p. 36).
Upon His resurrection He went back to His former state as an
invisible spirit, no longer having a body, according to Jehovah's
The Jehovahs Witnesses, in an attempt to demonstrate that
Jesus Christ is not Jehovah God, appeal to the Bible to
substantiate their beliefs. However, it is the Bible that
contradicts their theology, revealing it to be both unbiblical
One favorite passage used by Jehovahs Witnesses to prove
Christ is less than God is John 14:28: "My Father is greater
than I" This verse refers to the voluntary subordination of
Jesus during His earthly life when He willingly placed Himself in
submission to the Father. It says nothing about His nature, only
His temporary rank on earth. Thus, the "greater than"
refers to His position rather than His person.
One of the crucial phrases the Watchtower Society uses to support
its doctrine of the creation of Christ is the latter part of
Revelation 3:14, ". . . the beginning (____) of the creation
of God." It is used in their extended work on "The
Word" Who is He? According to John to set forth that the
Lord was a product of the creative activity of God. "Plainly
it means the first one or original one of God's ways to be
created." ("The Word" Who is He? According to John
[Brooklyn: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, 1962], p. 47.)
The Watchtower, which proclaims the authentic doctrinal views of
the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, states with reference to
This is true because his firstborn Son was the first of God's
creations. Then with him as His active agent God went on to
create everything else that has been brought into existence. He
was the "beginning of the creation of God," not that he
was the author of creation, but that he was the first one whom
God made and whom God made without the co-operation of anyone
else. ("Resurrection to a New World," The Watchtower,
68:99, April 1, 1947.)
Grammatically, there are two ways in which to understand this
phrase: "... the beginning of the creation of God." It
might be interpreted passively of Christ as the "beginning
of the creation of God," as the first and most excellent
creature of God's hands, or, it might declare of Christ,
"that He was the active source, author, and in this sense,
'beginning' and beginner of all creation; as in the words of the
Creed, 'by whom all things were made."' (Trench, Seven
Churches, pp. 256-57.)
Although both meanings are possible if merely considered as
entities, but with reference to the many statements of Scripture
concerning Christ's deity, the latter is imperatively demanded.
The Catholic Church rejected the former interpretation because it
would "place this passage in contradiction with every
passage in Scripture which claims divine attributes..."
(Ibid., p. 257.)
The New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures is in
error at this point by rendering this portion of the verse,
". . . the beginning of the creation by God." The
genitive case means, "of God" and not, "by
Bruce Metzger points out if the passage were to teach that Christ
was created "by God" it would have required the
preposition "hupo" rather than "tou theou"
which means "of God" (Theology Today, Bruce Metzger,
1953, pp. 79-80).
One need go no farther than these seven church letters referred
to above by Trench. All the titles given to Christ by Himself are
either divine or consistent with His divinity.
Several expressions of Paul to the Colossians are prototypes of
certain phrases of John in Revelation. Paul wrote an epistle to
the Laodiceans (Colossians 4:16) and gave directions for the
Colossian epistle to be read in the church of Laodicea. The
message inscribed by St. John to the Laodicean Church continues
the theme commenced by St. Paul to the Colossians. It is highly
probable that John was acquainted with Paul's epistle and was
aware of the Laodicean problem. Lightfoot's remarks here are
pertinent to this discussion:
Thus, while St. Paul finds it necessary to enforce the truth that
Christ is the image of the invisible God, that in Him all the
divine fullness dwells, that He existed before all things, that
through Him all things were created and in Him all things are
sustained, that He is the primary source (____) and has the
pre-eminence in all things; so in almost identical language St.
John, speaking in the person of our Lord, declares that He is the
Amen, the faithful and true witness, the primary source (____) of
the creation of God.
Some lingering shreds of the old heresy, we may suppose, still
hung about these Churches, and instead of "holding fast the
Head" they were even yet prone to substitute intermediate
agencies, angelic mediators, as links in the chain which should
bind man to God. They still failed to realize the majesty and
significance, the completeness, of the Person of Christ.
(Lightfoot, Colossians, pp. 41-42.)
Wordsworth corroborates the above statement of Lightfoot's that
there may be some reference to the false teaching of
those at Laodicea who substituted Angels as Creators and
Mediators in the place of Christ." (Chr. Wordsworth, The New
Testament of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, in the Original
Greek, p. 180.)
A few years before John's letter, Laodicea had been laid waste by
an earthquake. After this catastrophe she was rebuilt better than
her former splendor. She boasted that she did it herself, without
the assistance of the Roman emperor (Lightfoot, Colossians, p.
43.). In Revelation 3:17, 18, John condemned this pride of
wealth. Christ gave Himself this name in the Epistle, so that
they would rely on Him for their salvation and not look for any
good thing except from Him (Revelation 3:18).
The Laodiceans were probably familiar with this term,
"beginning of the creation of God," as meaning the
originating source through whom God works. Revelation 1: 18; 2:8;
3:21; and 5:15 are passages that make it clear this concept in
Colossians 1:15-18; John 1:3; and Hebrews 1:2 was well known to
the Laodiceans. Christ is presented as the unqualified medium of
the whole creation.
The Lord, in the other passages of Revelation, refers to Himself
as not only the "Beginning," but the "End."
(See also: Revelation 1:8; 21:6; 22:13; compare with 1:17; 2:8;
Isaiah 41:4; 44:6; 48:12). Christ is the end to which all
creation tends. Christ is also called the "Amen," and
the "faithful and true Witness," in Revelation 3:14.
The Amen seems to refer to Isaiah 65:16 where the "God of
Amen," was translated in the LXX (The Septuagint) as, the
God of truth. . . . "
"The Amen" signifies the truth of His promises and
"the true witness" points to the validity of His
revelations of heaven, earthly things, and the purpose and nature
of God (See also: John 1: 3; 3:11, 12; 8:28, 29; 10: 28; 14:9).
Revelation 3:14 introduces a strong antithesis as a condemnation
for the unfaithful and immature condition of the Church of
John refers to Christ as the beginning in the active sense:
"the living beginning," the "first cause of
creation." (Arndt and Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of
the New Testament, pp. 456-457). It signifies the causal relation
of Christ to the creation of God.
A. T. Robertson, the Greek grammarian had this to say: "Not
the first of creatures as the Arians held and Unitarians do now,
but the originating source of creation through whom God
works" (Word Pictures in the New Testament, Vol. VI, p.
____, as the "source of creation," not only coincides
with the historical and etymological use of the word, but also
the context and scriptural teaching about Christ. The Watchtower
Society, in its strict adherence to this verse in order to verify
a created beginning for Christ, not only disregards a thorough
exegesis of ____ but also ignores the overall biblical teaching.
The interpretation of Proverbs 8:22 has raised a greater
controversy than almost any other passage in the Old Testament
(F. C. Burney, "Christ as the APXH of Creation,
"Journal of Theological Studies, 27:160, 1926). This is a
verse the Jehovahs Witnesses (along with Arians of every
age) appeal to most frequently to confirm their view that Jesus
Christ was a created Being (Bruce M. Metzger, "The Jehovah's
Witnesses and Jesus Christ," Theology Today, 15:80, April,
1953). Their own Bible, The New World Translation of the Hebrew
Scriptures (New World Translation of the Ho-ly Scriptures
[Brooklyn: Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, 19631.)
pur-portedly rendered from the original languages by the New
World Bible translation committee, translates Proverbs 8:22 as
Jehovah himself produced me as the beginning of his way, the
earliest of his achievements of long ago.
A footnote makes reference to the meaning "to create."
(Ibid., p. 1945.)
Their teaching on Christ being a created being with reference to
Proverbs 8:22 permeates many of their publications. The
Watchtower, the authoritative voice of the society (Also known
as: Millennial Dawn. Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. The
People's Pulpit Association. The International Bible Student's
Association, etc.), states:
What then was his first creation? a son -his first son...
("Wise Sayings for the Modern Day," Watchtower, 78:659,
November 1, 1957.) This created son of God... (Ibid., p. 660.)
... before he created his wise son... (Ibid., p. 662.)
In their book, What Has Religion Done for Mankind?, it reads:
In the proverbs of wisdom, he speaks of himself as wisdom and
calls attention to his being a creation of the eternal heavenly
Father. (What Has Religion Done for Mankind? [Brooklyn:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, Inc., 1951], p. 37.)
"The Word": Who Is He? According to John mentions that
does not mean Beginner, Origin, or Originator. Plainly, it means
the first one or original one of God's ways to be created.
("The Word": Who is He? Accor-ding to John [Brooklyn:
Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, Inc., 19621, p. 47.)
There is no doubt that the Witnesses teach from this Old
Testament verse the creation of Christ.
The pivotal point of the controversy centers on the Hebrew word
ganah. The basic meaning of the word here should be understood as
"beget," or "create," not to
"produce" as translated by the Watchtower. The
lexicons, the biblical usage, substantives derived from the root
word, extra-biblical literature, the cognate languages, the early
versions and the context of the Bible, all support the biblical
usage and not the Watchtower.
The context is the critical stage in the exegesis of the passage.
The decision whether _ _ means "to create," or "to
beget," ultimately must be based upon the meanings of the
verbs descriptive of the production of wisdom in the immediate
context of Proverbs 8:22-25.
In Proverbs 8:23, "set up" means "I was
woven" (prenatal growth of the embryo) and verses 24, 25
means "I was brought forth with travail" (birth). The
conclusion is obvious that the verb "set up" in verse
22 is "beget me" (act of procreation). The above
discussion of Proverbs 8:22-25 is summed up adequately by Kidner
when he said that, "the passage as a whole may be meant to
bring to mind a 'royal' birth." (Derek Kidner, The Proverbs,
Jesus is called the "firstborn" of all creation in
Colossians 1:15. The Watchtower takes this to mean "first
created * " However, the passage itself states that Christ
is the Creator of all things (vs. 16, 17), not a created being.
The title firstborn refers to His preeminent position, not that
he is Jehovah's "first creation."
The meaning of "firstborn" in Colossians 1:15 is
perhaps impossible, or at least difficult, to understand without
an accurate understanding of its Old Testament implications. The
Hebrew term specifies the firstborn of human beings as well as
animals (Exodus 11:5). A word from the same root denotes
first-fruits (Exodus 23:16). This rendering
"first-fruits," may mean the "first ripe" or
"choicest" of the fruit.
Firstborn was a term applied in the Mosaic Law concerning the
specific rights and obligations of the first male child of a
family (Louis Hartman, Encyclopedic Dictionary of The Bible [New
York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., Inc., 19631, p. 777). The firstborn
of the father had the right of primogeniture: he acquired a
special blessing (Genesis 27); he became heir of a double share
of the father's wealth (Deuteronomy 21:17); he replaced his
father as head of the family and, therefore, possessed authority
over the younger brothers and sisters (Genesis 27:29-40; 49:8;
Ibid., p. 778). Primogeniture involved representation of the
father in the civil as well as religious capacity.
The firstborn was believed to possess a specific precedence in
holiness since through him flowed the common blood of the tribe
(Genesis 49:3; Deuteronomy 21:17). (1. Benzinger, "Family
and Marriage Relations, Hebrew," The New Schaff-Herzog
Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge [New York: Funk and Wagnalls
Company, 19081, IV, 277). This importance attached to the
firstborn was believed to indicate a priesthood relating to the
eldest sons of the families. (John McClintock and James Strong,
"First-born," Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and
Ecclesiastical Literature [New York: Harper and Brothers, 1873),
111, 571.) This eminence was inferred from the particular claim
of Yahweh to all the firstborn (Exodus 22:29). (Benzinger,
Casanowicz, writing in The Jewish Encyclopedia, notes that the
prerogatives of the firstborn consisted of: (1) a kind of
potestad over the family; (2) a double share of inheritance; (3)
the right of the priesthood; (4) God's promises to the patriarchs
were considered as attached to the line of the firstborn (I. M.
Casanowicz, "Primogeniture," The Jewish Encyclopedia
[New York: Funk and Wagnalls Company, 19051, X, 198).
From the apparent regulations in the rabbinical law, Casanowicz
concludes that ". . . the prerogative of primogeniture was
not conceived as an inalienable right inherent in the firstborn,
but rather as a gift by the law. . . " (Ibid.) Wine adds
that the use of the term is not a reverence to birth but to
position of favor. (W. B. Wine, Epistles to the Philippians and
Colossians [London: Oliphant Limited, 1955], p. 135.)
After Reuben had forfeited his right of primogeniture, his
priority in time was not passed on to Judah; but the dominion
belonging to it was transferred to Judah and the double portion
to Joseph (1 Chronicles 5:2).
This conclusion is also evident in the case of Esau and Jacob
(Genesis 25:23-33). Jacob purchased the birthright from Esau, but
he could not purchase Esau's priority in time. Another case in
which the birthright was transferred is in the case of the
Levites in Numbers 3:9:
By destroying the firstborn of Egypt and sparing those of Israel,
YHWH acquired an especial ownership over the latter. But as it
was not feasible to select the firstborn of the entire nation and
thus disturb the family organization, the Levites were
substituted for them (Casanowicz, op. cit., p. 199).
It is apparent that to receive this supremacy one did not have to
be born first. Rees concludes in The International Standard Bible
the laws and customs of all nations show that to be
"firstborn" means, not only priority in time, but a
certain superiority in privilege and authority (T. Rees,
"First-Begotten," The International Standard Bible
Encyclopedia [Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company,
1960], Il, 1113).
Firstborn is also rendered metaphorically in the Old Testament
(Francis Brown, S. R. Driver, and Charles Briggs, A Hebrew and
English Lexicon of the Old Testament [Oxford: Clarendon Press,
19551, p. 114). The term was used figuratively in job 18:13,
"the firstborn of death. . . ". "The first-born
son," notes Fausset, "held the chief place (Genesis
49:3); so here the chiefest (most deadly) disease that death has
ever engendered" (Robert Jamieson, A. Fausset, and David
Brown, A Commentary Critical, Ex-perimental and Practical on the
Old and New Testaments [Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
Co., 19611, 111, 44). Another use parallel to the above is Isaiah
14:30, "and the firstborn of the poor shall feed. . . "
This denotes the poorest of the poor, the most abject poor"
(Ibid., p. 612).
It is also applied in the Old Testament to Israel as the
firstborn of God (Exodus 4:22; Jeremiah 31:9), implying Israel as
". . . the prerogative race" J. B. Lightfoot, Saint
Paul's Epistles to the Colossians and to Philemon [Grand Rapids:
Zondervan Publishing House, 19611, p. 146). This paved the way
for the later Messianic reference to "firstborn" as
"the ideal representative of the race" (Thomas K.
Abbott, Epistles to the Ephesians and to the Colossians [The
International Critical Commentary. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans
Publishing Company, 19571, p. 210).
Abbott indicates from the writings of Rabbi Nathan in Shemoth
Rab-ba, on the interpretation of Psalms 89:27 (Psalms 89:28 in
the LXX), that this term "seems to have been a recognized
title of the Messiah (see Hebrews 1: 6) (Ibid).
The title firstborn had been used so much as a title of
sovereignty that God Himself is called "Firstborn of the
world," by R. Bechai on the Penta-teuch. (Lightfoot,
Colossians, p. 47).
It may be ascertained from the above evidence that the use of
"first-born" in the Old Testament to mean
"priority of birth" or "in time" has been
overshadowed by and sometimes even lost in the idea of
"supremacy" or "preeminence." This meaning
may be distinctly seen in Genesis 49:3 where Jacob said of
Reuben, "Thou art my firstborn, my might, and the beginning
of my strength, the excellency of dignity, and the excellency of
power." The dominating thought here is not primo-geniture,
but dignity, honor, strength and sovereignty.
It is used in Romans 8:29 to denote one who ". . . is chief,
or who is highly distinguished and preeminent" (Albert
Barnes, Notes on the New Testament: Explanatory and Practical
[London: Blackie and Sons, 18511, V11, 246). Arndt and Gingrich
use it figuratively "of Christ, as the firstborn of a new
humanity which is to be glorified, as its exalted Lord is
glorified..." (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A
Greek--English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early
Christian Literature [Chicago: The University of Chicago Press;
Cambridge: at The University Press, 19601, p. 734). He is their
chief and most excellent ruler.
The Messiah is preeminently the "Firstborn" (Ps.
89:28); and Israel
was God's firstborn (Exodus 19:6); a "kingdom of
priests" to God (Revelation 1:6); and therefore, the
believer becomes part of God's "church of the
firstborn" in Hebrews 12:23 (Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown,
op. cit., VI, 576). Radford writes that it is a description of
the communion of the saints, living and departed, all alike
eldest sons in a family where there is historical succession from
generation to generation of the faithful, but no priority of
spiritual status as between generations or within any generation
(Lewis B. Radford, The Epistles to the Colossians and the Epistle
to Philemon [London: Mouthen and Co., LTD, 1931], p. 168).
Pink would say the title, "Church of the Firstborn," is
synonymous with the ". . . appointed heirs of all things
[Hebrews 1:2] (Pink, op cit., p. 53).
In Hebrews 1:6 we have a clear example of Christ's superiority,
excellency and dignity, where the writer to the Hebrews tells us
that God referred to Christ as His firstborn. And because Christ
is superior to angels, they shall do obeisance to Him: And let
all the angels of God worship him."
In Revelation 1:5 and Colossians 1:8, Christ is referred to as
the "firstborn from the dead." It is obvious that the
literal sense of the word cannot be used here. Also it cannot be
used as the first to be raised from the dead. It can only mean
preeminence or sovereignty, in that Christ was the first to be
raised from the dead by His own power and to be exalted to
immortality (John Gill, An Exposition of the New Testament, both
Doctrinal and Practical [London: George Keith, 18761, IV, 382.),
as the context in both cases corroborates. He is the "one to
whom the bodies of His saints shall be conformed -see Philippians
3:21" (Pink, loc. cit). Both of these verses will be
discussed in more detail.
In all these uses the employment of "firstborn" belongs
to the Lord Jesus Christ, both as to the superiority of His
nature, of His office and of His glory.
Church fathers gave strict attention to the fact that the Apostle
Paul wrote first-born and not first-created.
It is evident that there is a great contrast between the ideas of
"birth" and "creation." They are not
equivalent terms. Christ was "born" and the universe
was "created." Meyer writes that the term is chosen,
in the comparison as to time of origin, it points to the peculiar
nature of the origination in the case of Christ, namely, that He
was not created by God, like the other beings in whom this is
implied in the designation ktisis, but born, having come forth
homogeneous from the nature of God. (H. A. W. Meyer, Critical and
Exegetical Handbook to the Epistles to the Philippians and
Colossians and to Philemon [New York: Funk and Wagnalls
Publishers, 18851, p. 226.)
C. S. Lewis gives one of the best explanations of the difference
between the concepts of begetting and creating:
One of the creeds says that Christ is the Son of God
"begotten, not created"; and it adds "begotten by
His Father before all worlds." Will you please get it quite
clear that this has nothing to do with the fact that when Christ
was born as a man on earth, that man was the son of a virgin? We
are now thinking about something that happened before Nature was
created at all, before time began. What does it mean?
Jesus Christ, the "firstborn," is before all creation
in time, but not a part of creation.
The above discussion illustrates that the concept of priority is
significant in the interpretation of "firstborn." But
it is used in a secondary sense as will be seen below.
Lordship over (sovereignty). This meaning in the Old Testament
often overshadowed and sometimes excludes the root meaning of
priority in time. Moulton has determined that ...
when the Jew thought of a firstborn son his emphasis was not so
much on the date of his birth as on his priority in the family
and the privileges that were his by right. Paul's thought may be
partly that Jesus is before us in time, but probably much more on
the fact that He is supreme in rank above all the created world
(Harold M. Moulton, Colossians, Philippians, and Ephesians
[Epworth Preacher's Commentaries. London: The Epworth Press,
1963], p. 16).
God's firstborn is, "the natural ruler, the acknowledged
head, of God's household." (Lightfoot, Colossians, p. 147.)
The right of the firstborn is closely related to Messiah over all
the created world. The phrase in Psalms 89:27, ". . I will
make him my firstborn," is explained by the addition of the
"higher than the kings of the earth," speaking of
Messianic sovereignty. This reference to the meaning of
sovereignty so predominated references to the Messiah that here
"firstborn of all creation" would mean "Sovereign
Lord over all creation by virtue of primogeniture" (Ibid.,
The phrase, ". . whom he hath appointed heir of all things.
. . " in Hebrews 1:2, definitely relates to the ". . I
will make him my firstborn. . . " in Psalm 89:27. The latter
phrase of Hebrews 1:2, "by whom also he made the
worlds," is an epitome of Colossians 1: 15-17. The meaning
of supremacy so dominated the title in some of its uses that it
was as seen above, even used as a title of God Himself.
The Jehovah's Witnesses, in trying to establish Christ as a
created being, render the "firstborn of all creation"
in 1:15 as a partitive genitive (the whole of which it is part).
In doing this they ignore the Old and New Testament usage of the
term. This view is grammatically permissible; however, "this
interpretation is exegetically and historically impossible; for
verses 16, 17 emphatically distinguish between 'him' and the 'all
things' of creation" (L. J. Baggott, A New Approach to
Colossians [London: A. R. Mowbray and Co., Limited, 1961], p.
The Witnesses try to substantiate their doctrine of Christ being
one of the creation by a deliberate insertion of a word for which
there is no basis in the Greek text. A clear example occurs here
in The New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures,
Colossians 1:16,17, which is pertinent to this discussion.
.because by means of him all [other] things were created in
the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things
invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or
governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created
through him and for him. Also, he is before all [other] things
and by means of him all other things were made to exist ...
The word "other" has been inserted all the way through
the passage unjustly. There is no equivalent word in the Greek
text and no reputable translation includes it (Ray C. Stedman,
"The New World Translation of the Christian Greek
Scriptures," Our Hope, 50:32, July, 1953). When it is
considered that the Jehovah's Witnesses assume Jesus Christ to be
a created being, it is easy to understand why they insert
"other." The Greek solely states, "He is before
all things and by him all things hold together," which is
interpreted logically by Stedman to plainly teach " ... that
Christ is the Creator of everything that has existence, material
or immaterial, and therefore He cannot Himself be a
creature" (lbid). However, when the word "other"
is unwarrantably interjected four times, it alters the thought to
imply that Christ was the author of all created things, with the
exception of one, Himself, who the Watchtower Society says was
created. A footnote in the New World Translation reads, "All
other: as at Luke 13:2, 4 and elsewhere" (New World
Translation of the Holy Scriptures [Brooklyn: Watchtower Bible
and Tract Society, 19631 p. 3385).
The reference here to Luke 13:2,4 corresponds to the Lord's
question about the Galileans whom Pilate had killed, and the 18
men who were slain by the falling tower of Siloam. He asks,
"Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners
than all other Galileans. . . " and, "Or do you suppose
that those 18 ... were worse culprits than all [the other NWT]
men who live in Jerusalem?" (New American Standard Bible New
Testament [La Habra: The Foundation Press for the Lockman
Foundation, 19631, p. 125).
Stedman, in his article, "The New World Translation of the
Christian Greek Scriptures," set forth clearly the reason
for the inclusion of "other" here and its exclusion in
Now here, though the original has no word for "other,"
it is plainly implied in the context, for, of course, these dead
men were being put in contrast with all their fellow-citizens.
However, there is no such implication in Colossians 1:15-17
unless one presupposes that Christ Himself was nothing but a
creature. But no translator has the right thus to presuppose on a
doctrinal issue. If the text were simply rendered as it is,
leaving out the inserted word "other," it would agree
exactly with other New Testament passages that declare plainly
that the Lord Jesus Christ is Creator of everything that has been
created (Hebrews 1:10; John 1:3).
Again it is evident that the translators have taken special care
to make the text say what they suppose it ought to say rather
than to let it speak plainly for itself (Stedman, op. cit., p.
Hebrews 2:10, not Luke 13, is the true parallel of Colossians
1:16, 17. It speaks so distinctly of Christ's creating all things
that the New World committee did not dare to insert
"other," in the text:" ... for whose sake all
things are and through whom all things are. . . " (Hebrews
2: 10). (New World Translation, op. cit., p. 3432).
It was decided by Baggott that "the idea of the Son of God
being part of creation was entirely foreign to Paul's mind (see
2:9; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Philippians 2:6-8), and also the thought
of his day (Baggott, loc. cit.). The partitive genitive referred
to, "creation," is usually expressed in the plural
number, but the Apostle does not here use the plural (John Eadie,
Commentary on the Epistle of Paul to the Colossians [Grand
Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 19571, p. 49).
The use of sovereign as the primary meaning of
"firstborn" in Colossians 1:15 also has its
confirmation in Paul's aggressive denunciation of the Colossian
Thus, in a brief but concise passage of Scripture, Paul makes
plain to his readers that Jesus Christ existed before creation
and therefore is sovereign over creation. This passage does not
teach or even support the Witnesses' doctrine that Jesus Christ
was the first created being.
Paul used language that was understood in the Colossians'
nomenclature. He purposely chose "firstborn."
We describe Christ in relation to all creation because it best
characterizes the dignity, preeminence and sovereignty that
belongs to Him as Lord of all. Therefore, in light of the
historical, literal and metaphorical meanings the Jehovah's
Witnesses are unscriptural in the application of it to Christ as
Jesus Christ, as taught in Colossians 1:15-18, is prior to,
distinct from and sovereign over the universe.
According to the Watchtower Society the Holy Spirit is not part
of the Godhead. Both the personality and the deity of the Holy
Spirit [defined as "the invisible active force of Almighty
God which moves His servants to do His will" (Let God Be
True, p. 108)] are denied. The personality of the Holy Spirit is
consistently rejected throughout the New World Translation by not
capitalizing the term "spirit" when referring to the
To promulgate this error they mistranslate such passages as
Ephesians 4:30 ("also, do not be grieving God's holy spirit,
with which you have been sealed for a day of releasing by
ransom"), and John 14:26 ("But the helper, the holy
spirit which the Father will send in my name, that one will teach
you all things and bring back to your minds all the things I told
However, both of these verses teach the personality of the Holy
Spirit. How can one grieve something impersonal? Or how can an
"impersonal force" teach all things? Competent
translations substitute "with which" in Ephesians 4:30
with "by whom" and have "whom the Father will
send" and "he will teach you" in John 14:26 rather
than the impersonal holy spirit of the Watchtower.
In Watchtower theology, salvation is not regarded as a free gift
from God based upon Jesus Christ's work on the cross. Rather,
their literature stresses a salvation by works. Russell wrote,
"They must be recovered from blindness as well as from
death, that they, each for himself, may have a full chance to
prove, by obedience or disobedience, their worthiness of life
eternal" (Charles Taze Russell, Studies in the Scriptures,
Vol. 1, P. 158).
Elsewhere they state: "All who by reason of faith in Jehovah
God and in Christ Jesus dedicate themselves to do God's will and
then faithfully carry out their dedication will be rewarded with
everlasting life. . . " (Let God Be True, p. 298).
The Bible teaches we are saved by grace through faith alone.
Man's good works can never contribute to his salvation. "For
by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of
yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that
no one should boast" (Ephesians 2:8, 9 NASB). "He saved
us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in
righteousness, but according to His mercy" (Titus 3:5 NASB).
The Watchtower denies the existence of hell as a place of
everlasting punishment for the wicked. They argue, "The
doctrine of a burning hell where the wicked are tortured
eternally after death cannot be true mainly for four reasons: (1)
It is wholly unscriptural; (2) it is unreasonable; (3) it is
contrary to God's love; and (4) it is repugnant to justice"
(Let God Be True, p. 9).
In response to this we contend that the doctrine is absolutely
scriptural: ". . . when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed
from Heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out
retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not
obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. And these will pay the penalty
of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and
from the glory of His power" (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9).
Matthew 25:46 speaks of eternal punishment and eternal life in
the same context. Eternal punishment lasts as long as eternal
life: "And these will go away into eternal punishment, but
the righteous into eternal life."
The doctrine of everlasting punishment is neither contrary to
God's love nor justice, as the Watchtower claims. Jesus Christ
has taken the sins of the world upon Himself and offers
everlasting life to all who will receive the free gift of God. If
people reject His offer then they must suffer the penalty for
their own sins.
"When Jesus said He would come again He did not mean He
would return in the flesh visible to men on earth. He has given
up that earthly life as a ransom and therefore, can not take such
life back again ... The good news today is that Christ Jesus has
come again, that God's Kingdom by Him has been set up and is now
ruling in heaven ... all the evidence shows that Jesus took up
His Kingdom power and began his reign from Heaven in the year
1914" (Pamphlet, "This Good News of the Kingdom",
pp. 19, 21).
The idea that the second coming of Christ took place in 1914 is
important to Watchtower theology. That was the time, they say,
that God's kingdom was fully set up in heaven. However, this was
not always their teaching. Before 1914, the Watchtower was
predicting that God's Kingdom was to be set up on earth (not in
heaven) in 1914!
... The times of the Gentiles' extend to 1914. And the Heavenly
Kingdom will not have full sway till then, but as a 'stone' the
Kingdom of God is set up 'in the days of these Kings' and by
consummating them it becomes a universal Kingdom-a 'great
mountain and fills the whole earth"' (Watchtower Reprints,
Vol. I, March, 1880, p. 82).
Charles Taze Russell also stated that the world would see
"the full establishment of the Kingdom of God in the earth
at A.D. 1914, the terminus of the times of the Gentiles" (C.
T. Russell, Thy Kingdom Come, 1891, p. 126).
The prophecies made by Russell and the Watchtower concerning 1914
totally failed because the Kingdom of God was not established
upon the earth. Today, as already observed, the Watchtower
teaches that Christ returned invisibly in 1914 and set up His
Kingdom only in Heaven. However, this idea clearly opposes the
scriptural teaching of the visible bodily return of Christ:
"Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This
same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come
in like manner as ye have seen Him go into Heaven" (Acts 1:
Jesus warned against such false teaching about His return:
"Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the
desert; go not forth: Behold, he is in the secret chambers;
believe it not. For as the lightning cometh out of the East, and
shineth even unto the West; so shall the coming of the Son of Man
be" (Matthew 24:26, 27). The Scriptures also state:
"Behold, he cometh with the clouds; and every eye shall see
Him. . . " (Revelation 1: 7).
The Watchtower is guilty of false prophecy (Deuteronomy 18:21,
22) in wrongly predicting the date 1914 to be the return of
Christ. They are also wrong in asserting His coming is secret and
invisible because the Scriptures teach completely to the contrary
The New World Translation
In 1961, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society published the New
World Translation of the Holy Scriptures. The rationale for this
new translation was given when the New Testament was published in
But honesty compels us to remark that, while each of them (other
translations) has its points of merit, they have fallen victim to
the power of human traditionalism in varying degrees,
consequently, religious traditions, hoary with age, have been
taken for granted and gone unchallenged and uninvestigated. These
have been interwoven into the translations to color the thought.
In support of a preferred religious view, an inconsistency and
unreasonableness have been insinuated into the teachings of the
The Son of God taught that the traditions of creed-bound men made
the commandments and teachings of God of no power and effect. The
endeavor of the New World Bible Translation committee has been to
avoid this snare of religious traditionalism. (Foreword to New
World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures, 1961).
The translators of the New World Translation have not achieved
their goal. Their work is a highly biased attempt to justify some
of their non-biblical doctrines. In terms of scholarship, the New
World Translation leaves much to be desired. The following
examples will make the point clear.
One of the readings of the New World Translation that has caused
considerable outrage among Greek scholars is its totally
unsupportable rendering of the last clause of John 1:1, "The
word was a god." This Translation makes Jesus Christ less
than God, relegating Him to the position of a "created
being" in accordance with Watchtower theology. There is no
basis whatsoever for this rendering, although the Watchtower
would have people believe the contrary.
". . How are we to understand John 1: 1, 2 of which there
are differing translations? Many translations read: 'And the Word
was with God, and the Word was God.' Others read: 'And the Word
(The Logos) was divine." Another: 'and the Word was God.'
Others 'And the Word was a god.' Since we have examined so much
of what John wrote about Jesus who was the Word made flesh we are
now in a position to determine which of those several
translations is correct. It means our salvation" (The Word
Who Is He? According to John, p. 52).
This is a misleading statement because it gives the impression
that other translations agree with their rendering when the
opposite is true. There are no reputable authorities or
translations that support the reading, "The Word was a
The only other translation quoted in this Watchtower publication
that reads the same way is The New Testament in an Improved
Version upon the Basis of Archbishop Newcome's New Translation:
with a Corrected Text, printed in London in 1808. Such an
antiquated and obscure translation done by a Unitarian cannot be
Grammatical Explanation of John 1:1 The grammatical explanation
given by the Watchtower for its translation of John 1: 1 is
unsatisfactory. They contend that when theos (the Greek word for
God) appears in John 1:1 it appears twice, once with the definite
article (the) and once without. When it appears without the
definite article (in the last clause of John 1:1) they feel
justified in translating it, "And the Word was a god. . .
"Careful translators recognize that the articular
construction of the noun [with the definite article] points to an
identity, a personality, whereas an anarthrous construction
(without the definite article) points to a quality about
someone" (Appendix to the Kingdom Interlinear Translation of
the Greek Scriptures, Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, p.
Not only is the above statement incorrect, it is also
inconsistently applied throughout the Watchtower's own
translation. In the first 18 verses of John's gospel, the word
for God - theos - appears six times without the definite article
(vs. 1, 6, 12, 13, and twice in 18). Yet, it is rendered God
(referring to Jehovah) in each instance except for the last
clause of verse one when it refers to Jesus!
If the Watchtower's translations were consistent, verse six
should read, "There arose a man that was sent forth as a
representative of a god." Moreover, verse 12 should read
"to become a god's children," etc. Why only in verse
one do they refuse to translate theos as God (meaning Jehovah)?
We conclude that there is no basis for translating John 1:1,
"The Word was a god" as in the New World Translation.
It is a biased rendering that cannot be justified grammatically.
They do not want to acknowledge what is clearly taught in verse
one: Jesus Christ is God. Also, it should be observed that the
absence of the definite article does not indicate someone other
than the true God. The entry on theos in the authoritative Arndt
and Gingrich Greek Lexicon states theos is used "quite
predominately of the true God, sometimes with, sometimes without,
the article" (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich,
Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, 1957, p. 357).
(Further information on the Greek construction and translation of
John 1:1 has been presented by many other writers in complete
form. See the recommended reading list for works that deal
extensively with Jehovah's Witnesses. Suffice it to say, the
Watchtower mistranslation of John 1: 1 is not supported by any
contextual grammatical study.)
Even without going to the Greek grammar of John 1: 1, we can see
that the Watchtower translation of John 1:1 goes against the
clear teachings of the Bible. In both the Old and New Testaments
we are taught that there is only one true God (Isaiah 43:10; John
17:3; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6, etc.). All other "gods" are
false gods. Those who would acknowledge any god as true except
for Jehovah God are guilty of breaking the first commandment:
"You shall have no other gods before me" (Exodus 20:3).
By translating the last part of John 1:1 as, "The Word was a
god," the Watchtower has declared its belief in polytheism,
or the belief in more than one god. According to the whole
testimony of the Bible, the Word (Jesus Christ) of John 1:1 must
be either the only true God, Jehovah, or a false god. The Bible
knows only one true God, Jehovah.
Jehovahs Witnesses will not call Jesus Christ a false god.
Neither will they call him Jehovah, the one true God. By calling
Jesus Christ "a god" in John 1:1, they have
acknowledged their own polytheism, which is contrary to the
Bible, the Word of God.
In the eighth chapter of the gospel of John, Jesus is asked by
the religious leaders, "Whom do you make yourself out to
be?" (verse 58). His answer is a direct reference to Exodus
3:14 where God identifies Himself from the burning bush to Moses
by the designation, "I Am. " The Jews, realizing that
Jesus claimed to be God, attempted to stone Him for blasphemy
The New World Translation mistranslates this verse by making it
read, "Before Abraham came into existence I have been."
The footnote to John 8:58 in the 1950 edition is enlightening:
"I have been -'ego eimi' after the aorist infinitive clause
and hence properly rendered in the perfect indefinite tense. It
is not the same as 'Ho ohn' meaning 'The Being' or 'the I AM' at
Exodus 3:14 LXX" (New World Translation, 1950, p. 312).
This is not any "perfect indefinite tense." The
Watchtower then changed the note to read "the perfect
tense," dropping the word indefinite (see The Kingdom
Interlinear Translation of the Greek Scriptures, 1969). However,
this is also incorrect since the verb eimi is in the present
tense, indicative mood, and hence should properly be translated,
"I Am." Moreover, the context of John 8:58 (8:42-9:12),
the verb "to be" occurs 22 times in the indicative mood
and the New World Translation correctly renders 21 out of 22. The
only incorrect rendering is in John 8:58. Why?
Furthermore, the footnote is deliberately misleading. The
Septuagint (abbreviated as LXX), the Greek translation of the
Hebrew Old Testament, translated the name of God in Exodus 3:14
with the Greek Ego Eimi ho ohn (I am The Being). The Watchtower's
note obscures the correlation between the two passages by failing
to citeego eimi as part of the Septuagint translation. Their note
reads, "It is not the same as oh ohn, meaning 'the being' or
'The I Am' at Exodus 3:14, LXX. "
While the Hebrew text repeats the same form of the "to
be" verb in Exodus 3:14, customary Greek usage makes it more
natural for the Greek translation of Exodus 3:14 to first express
the term as ego eimi (I am) and then a different variation of the
same term ho ohn (the Being),. In conclusion, the Watchtower has
blatantly misrepresented the Greek argument for Christ's deity
from John 8:58. Jesus Christ is clearly identifying Himself as
the Ego eimi (ho ohn) of Exodus 3:14
Dr. A. T. Robertson, one of the greatest- Greek scholars who ever
lived, after translating "ego eimi" as "I
AM," had this to say about John 8:58: "Undoubtedly here
Jesus claims eternal existence with the absolute phrase used of
God" (Word Pictures in the New Testament, Vol. V, pp.
The Watchtower betrays itself in its own Kingdom Interlinear
Translation which contains a literal English translation beneath
the Greek text as well as the New World Translation reading. In
John 8:58 under the Greek ego eimi, The Kingdom Interlinear
rightly translates it, "I am", but New World
Translation changes it to, "I have been." This
inconsistency is striking.
There is no sufficient basis for the translation, "I have
been," in John 8:58. This is another example of the
scholarly shortcomings of the Watchtower. It obscures the fact
that Jesus Christ is Jehovah God.
In Colossians one, the Apostle Paul stresses the Lordship and
deity of Jesus Christ by emphasizing that He is the creator of
all things: "For by Him all things were created"
(1:16). However, the New World Translation, with absolutely no
legitimate justification, adds the word "other" in this
verse and five other places in chapter one in an attempt to make
Jesus a created being:
Vs. 16, Because by means of Him all [other] things were created
in the Heavens and upon the earth (NWT).
Vs. 16, All [other] things have been created through Him and for
Vs. 17, Also, He is before all [other] things and by means of Him
all [other] things were made to exist (NWT).
Vs. 20, And through Him to reconcile again to Himself all [other]
There is no basis for adding the world "other" to the
texts listed above. On the contrary, to do so destroys the
natural context of the passages and improperly implies that Jesus
Christ is Himself a creature. Since Jehovah God alone created all
things (Isaiah 44:24; Hebrew 3:4), and Colossians calls Jesus
Christ the creator, we can justifiably assume that Jesus Christ
is Jehovah God.
We conclude, The New World Translation is not a work of competent
scholarship, but rather an attempt to promulgate the doctrines of
the Watchtower. The foreword of the New World Translation states,
"It is a very responsible thing to translate the Holy
Scriptures from their original languages. " We agree
wholeheartedly and we wish the Watchtower had lived up to this
A close examination of the Watchtower has demonstrated that it is
not what it claims to be: the "sole collective channel for
the flow of biblical truth." It is guilty of false prophecy,
anti-biblical theology, and misrepresentation of the truth.
We heartily recommend to Jehovah's Witnesses that they act on the
following instruction from the Watchtower: "We need to
examine, not only what we personally believe, but also what is
taught by any religious organization with which we may be
associated. Are its teachings in full harmony with God's Word, or
are they based on the traditions of men? If we are lovers of the
Truth, there is nothing to fear from such an examination"
(The Truth That Leads to Eternal Life, 1968, p. 13).
Such an examination will show the shortcomings of the man-made
Watchtower and the all-sufficient perfection of Jesus Christ, our
"great God and Saviour" (Titus 2:13).
Jehovah's Witnesses Terms
Annihilation -According to Jehovah's Witnesses, unbelievers will
not receive eternal punishment but rather will be annihilated, or
cease to exist.
Arius -A heretic who lived in the fourth century A.D. arguments
the fact that Jesus Christ was eternal God. His arguments against
the deity of Christ have been repeated by such groups as
Jehovah's Witnesses and the Unitarians.
Christadelphians- Cult founded in 1848 by John Thomas. It teaches
among other unbiblical doctrines that Jesus Christ is not God and
that the Holy Spirit is only a power, a forerunner of Jehovah's
Witnesses. Franz, Frederick W. -Fourth and current president of
the Watchtower Bible and Society.
Little Flock -Another designation for the 144,000 Jehovah's
Witnesses who live in heaven after their death. All other
Jehovah's Witnesses are barred from heaven and live instead on
Michael the Archangel- According to the Watchtower, Jehovah's
first creation, the archangel who later became the man Jesus.
Nathan Knorr- Third president of the Watchtower Bible and Tract
Society. During his leadership (1942-19 7 7) the Society
increased from 115, 000 to over two million members.
New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures -The official
translation of the Bible by the Jehovah's Witnesses,
characterized by their own biased interpretations.
Russell, Charles Taze -The founder of what is the present-day
Jehovah's Witness (Watchtower Bible and Tract Society). Russell
wrote voluminously including the six-volume work, Studies in the
Scriptures, where he expounded his aberrational doctrines.
Rutherford, Judge J. F. -Second president of the Watchtower Bible
and Tract Society. Gave group the name Jehovah's Witnesses in
1931. Rutherford centralized the authority of the Witnesses
during his reign to its present-day headquarters in Brooklyn, New
Studies in the Scriptures - Seven-volume work, six of which were
written by Charles Taze Russell, founder of Jehovah's Witnesses,
that expounds the basic teachings of the Jehovah's Witnesses.
The Awake - Watchtower periodical designed to evangelize the
public. The Harp of God -A book by judge Joseph Rutherford,
second president of Jehovah's Witnesses, explaining Watchtower
The Truth That Leads to Everlasting Life-Watchtower study book
designed to introduce one to the Watchtower teachings
The Watchtower-One of the official publications of the Jehovah's