For [the] vision is yet for the appointed time, and it keeps panting on to the end, and it will not tell a lie. Even if it should delay, keep in expectation of it; for it will without fail come true. It will not be late.” (Habakkuk 2:3)
When it comes to looking forward to the end, they’re not much for risk management at the Witness support organization. They tend to go in whole hog. Even Ramipo does not represent a hedging of that view, as someone suggested. ‘It’s to facilitate increased preaching,’ they say, ‘if we don’t use it in this system, we’ll use it in the next.’ Brothers are shocked at current events—how can people not be?—and read nearness of the end into it. It’s human nature, a not unreasonable enhancement of what even J.Q.Public shouts these days: “What is this world is coming to?!”fully to be expected of people whose trademark m.o. is ‘keep on the watch.’ My non-Witness dad, with no use for religion, would say the world “was going to hell in a hand basket.”
Should the Witness organization take the other side of that sentiment and try to tamp down expectations? Even were they inclined to do that (and they’re not), they would not dare, for fear of running afoul of “where is this promised presence of his? Why from the days of our forefathers all things are continuing….” Let others try to normalize today’s outrageous events if they will. It’s not their job to do so. Several years ago a Regional began with observing how quickly the world normalizes absolutely shocking new developments.
Gays took decades to enter the mainstream, transgenders mere months, and the notion of many genders but minutes. A British survey expresses dismay that only about 1/3 of persons inquire as to a new acquaintances preferred pronouns. To which anyone of common sense is surprised that it is as many as it is. The trend is only a few years old. Beatlemania did not sweep the world so quickly.
Alas, are not true Christians doomed to be chumps in the eyes of the greater world, so that there is little point in not accepting that ‘fate,’ taking our place with those who suffer evil from an unbelieving and critical, world? I even cut Camping plenty of slack on his simplistic end-of-the-world formula a few years back in my treatise on how to predict the end of the world. At least he’s keeping on the watch, I said. It beats those who are just sitting on their hands.
What to make of the divine/human interface? The USCIRF decried in an article critical of the anticult movement, that it is because that movement presumes to arbitrate religious truth that it is so objectionable. Specifically, it is that the only divine/human interface allowable to the anticult movement is the one-on-one gnostic kind, and that anyone coming between a person and his/her own private interpretation of God is a manipulator intent on mind-control. The movement disallows completely the idea that God may just operate in that way, that he may lead his people by means of other people. He certainly has in the past—in fact, he has seldom broke from that pattern. Moreover, the reason the modern secular age would stipulate the gnostic interface only is in order that the resulting religious views always remains disunited and thus easy to scatter or absorb into a humanist world—in short, that they never add up to much of anything, they never become a force that an irreligious world feels obliged to reckon with. It is a way of ‘keeping your religion in its place, and make sure it’s in last place.’
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