“Therefore for you this error will become like a broken section about to fall down, a swelling out in a highly raised wall…”
– Isaiah 30 –
The Second Coming of Jesus Christ may perhaps be the most anticipated event in the history of the world and also, paradoxically, the most misunderstood. While Jehovah’s Witnesses do not use the term “the second coming,” in his letter to the Hebrews the apostle Paul used a similar expression, saying: “The second time that he appears.”
In so doing, the apostle was comparing and contrasting certain features of Christ’s first and second appearance in the world. And as discussed in chapter five, a second appearance of Christ would seem to suggest a visible rather than an invisible parousia. .
Because of their false expectations, the much-anticipated appearance of the Messiah became a stumbling block to the Jewish nation as a whole. The Messiah was, according to their misguided belief, supposed to restore the throne of David to Jerusalem and cast off the Roman occupation. That this was the general expectation of Israel is evidenced by the question that the disciples put to Jesus following his resurrection, when they asked: “Lord, are you restoring the kingdom to Israel at this time?”
It was inconceivable to the Jews that the Messiah would not become an integral part of the Jewish establishment. They were God’s people and had been for nearly two thousand years! And there most certainly was no provision in the Jewish messianic doctrine for Christ to appear a second time! So it was inevitable that the proud Jewish leaders would reject Jesus.
But when the Romans obliterated Jerusalem and its temple in 70 C.E. the Jewish system of worship came to an abrupt end, and with it, any possibility that a future messiah would be forthcoming from among the Hebrew nation. From Jehovah’s standpoint the Jewish system had served its purpose. It had produced the promised Messiah as God had intended and then that system of worship was brought to a conclusion.
In writing to the Hebrew Christians, it appears that Paul’s intention was to prepare them for the coming end of the Jewish system of things. For example, in reference to Jerusalem Paul wrote at Hebrews 13:12-14: “Hence Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Let us, then, go forth to him outside the camp, bearing the reproach he bore, for we do not have here a city that continues, but we are earnestly seeking the one to come.”
In saying that Jesus was “outside the camp,” Paul was drawing a comparison to the animal sacrifices performed in the tabernacle—the remains of which were disposed as refuse “outside the camp.” But in making that analogy, the apostle was saying that Jesus was outside the Jewish religious institution centered in Jerusalem.
And because first century Christians were in anticipation of Christ’s imminent arrival, it seems likely that they also came to expect that Jesus would return to the physical city of Jerusalem. No doubt that is why Paul reminded the Hebrew Christians that they did not have in Jerusalem “a city that continues.”
Because both Jesus and Paul used the expression “the conclusion of the systems of things”in connection with the end of the Jerusalem as the center of the worship of Jehovah, it is evident that the pattern in the first century has special importance for those Christians who would be living “the second time that he appears,” during the conclusion of the present system of things.
In the 12th chapter of Hebrews, Paul reminds Christians of the awesome power that was displayed when Jehovah revealed himself to the Israelite nation that had gathered at the foot of Mount Sinai. When Jehovah spoke to Moses on the summit the whole mountain shook and was enveloped in fire and smoke. As if to dispel any notion that the phenomenon was a natural volcanic occurrence—deafening trumpets blared from the invisible.
Paul next explains the significance of that event by quoting from the prophet Haggai. He wrote: “At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, saying: ‘Yet once more I will set in commotion not only the earth but also the heaven.’ Now the expression ‘Yet once more’ signifies the removal of the things being shaken as things that have been made, in order that the things not being shaken may remain. Wherefore, seeing that we are to receive a kingdom that cannot be shaken…”
Originally “the things being shaken” proved to be the entire Jewish religious system, with its Holy City, temple and priesthood being shaken completely out of existence. Yet the prophecy of Haggai, from which the apostle directly quoted, foretells that Jehovah is going to “rock all the nations,” not just Jerusalem.
That being the case, it is evident that the prophecies call for the entire wicked system of things to be rocked into oblivion when Christ appears for the second time. That would include that which up until then will have served as the earthly center of the worship of Jehovah, as Jerusalem had been originally. Manifestly, the only thing that will remain standing when the smoke has dissipated will be the kingdom of God and the children with faith in God’s unshakable kingdom.
SETTLING THE ISSUES RAISED IN EDEN
Tragically, the human race has been alienated from God since the time that Adam and Eve rebelled against Jehovah and were as a consequence evicted from the paradise of pleasure known as the Garden of Eden. The trusting relationship that Adam briefly enjoyed with his Creator was ruined, both for himself and his then-unborn offspring.
As a hint of the close friendship that once existed between God and man, Genesis reveals that there was a time—back when the world was new—when the presence of God was manifested in some way as if he were leisurely strolling about in the Garden of Eden during the breezy part of the day—casually conversing with his earthly son, Adam. Since that fleeting moment of perfect harmony between God and the first man, the subsequent annals of history on the outside of the gates of Eden is a mere chronicle of the evils due to the alienation of man from God.
But Jehovah has been like a determined and long-suffering parent with a problem child. In his vast wisdom, though, Jehovah knows that the only way that mankind will be finally disabused of its foolishness and actually come to appreciate the benefits of fully trusting and obeying God is if we are made to suffer the painful consequences for our prideful folly and lack of faith.
As Jehovah’s Witnesses know, central to God’s purpose to redeem mankind is the establishment of Christ’s kingdom. Associated with Jesus in his heavenly kingdom are to be 144,000 chosen ones from among mankind, who will eventually be invited to approach Jehovah’s very residence in heaven—the true mountain and city of God. But what purpose will they serve? Surely Jehovah and Jesus do not need their help as associate kings. Indeed, why does God invite anyone from the realms below to inhabit the heavenly sphere?
Back in Eden the original serpent had implied that God was untrustingly holding something good back from Adam and Eve. “Is it really so?” the slithering cherub impugned. Later on in Job’s day, Satan insidiously insinuated that God was guilty of inducing his servants to obey him through mere bribery. To his everlasting praise, Jehovah’s answer to the slanderous accusations has gone far beyond what any angel or human could have reasonably expected. Not only would Jehovah provide the means to legally ransom and restore mankind to paradise—proving he had the best interests of man at heart from the start—in his grand magnanimity, Jehovah also purposed to select some from among mankind and exalt them to heaven itself.
But God’s graciousness even extends beyond merely recreating some humans into spirit creatures. Jehovah purposes to grant these special chosen ones to have life in themselves. That is something that no human can possibly possess, since earthly creatures, by nature, are dependent upon outside forces to sustain life. And although the angels are a superior form of life, not even they possess life in themselves. Having life in oneself means being immortal. Immortal beings are no longer even dependent upon Jehovah for sustenance. Immortality means possessing life as a deathless, incorruptible and indestructible being. Immortality is existence in its own right. Immortality is having life like the very Almighty Jehovah God himself possesses!
Thus, Jehovah not only willingly exalts mere human creatures into his very presence—some individuals from even the dregs of degraded human society, but he also purposes that they should become exactly like himself in nature—glorious, deathless, divine beings. And that is the very thing that Satan implied that Jehovah was supposedly unwilling to give up, when he said: “For God knows that in the very day of your eating from it your eyes are bound to be opened and you are bound to be like God, knowing good and bad.”
According to the Devil God did not trust his own creation. And since the first humans and the Accuser were obviously not trustworthy, who could really argue otherwise? But contrary to the Devil’s presumptuous accusations, Jehovah has seen fit to lovingly bestow the incomprehensible gift of becoming exactly like himself upon Christ and select sons of Adam. In all likelihood the Accuser had no comprehension of the dimensions of Jehovah’s love for his creation. Thus, with the accomplishment of his eternal purpose in a marvelous and masterful way Jehovah will have established himself as the “God of gods.” Not only has he proven himself more powerful and infinitely wiser, but Jehovah has also been delighted to demonstrate his moral superiority and divinity over both his human and demonic detractors.
In the face of the wonderful way that Jehovah has responded to Satan’s challenge, as if to assuage his own humiliation and diminish God’s glorious purpose, the Devil has vigorously peddled the preposterous lie that humans have an inherent immortal soul. He has also promoted the blatantly false religious doctrine that all “good” people go to heaven when they die; as if that privilege were somehow mankind’s birthright and not dependent on Jehovah’s limited choosing and undeserved kindness. Clearly, the Devil intends to devalue God’s special gift before the world by making it seem mundane.
The truth is, though, Jehovah does not grant anyone an everlasting heavenly residence with himself, much less immortality, unless first they prove that they have an unbreakable faith and loyalty. And in order to create within his chosen ones an indomitable faith, they must first endure Jehovah’s displeasure and his tempered discipline; for even as the scripture says, our Lord learned obedience from the things he was made to suffer.
That is why the apostle exhorted the Hebrews to endure his disciplining—no matter how severe. At Hebrews 12:8, Paul wrote: “But if you are without the discipline of which all have become partakers, you are really illegitimate children and not sons.” A few verses down in that same 12th chapter, Paul partially quotes from Isaiah, where he said: “Hence straighten up the hands that hang down and the enfeebled knees, and keep making straight paths for your feet, that what is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather that it may be healed.”
The 35th chapter of Isaiah—the source of Paul’s quote—is God’s loving exhortation to Israel after the nation had endured a most severe punishment. So then, by inspiration the apostle Paul is really exhorting Christians who would be living during the conclusion of the entire system of things, since that is when Jehovah will rock the heavens and the earth and severely discipline those whom he calls his sons. That will mark the occasion when spiritual Israel would finally come to stand before the awesome heavenly Mount Zion.
Having more closely considered how Jehovah has purposed to permanently settle the challenge to his universal sovereignty, consider, now, the ultimate culmination of his work.
“YOUR GRAND INSTRUCTOR WILL NO LONGER HIDE”
As the Originator and rightful Ruler of the universe, God is uniquely qualified to instruct his creation. However, it may also suit God’s purpose to remain in the background and to hide himself for a time and simply allow events to unfold—even as God himself states, when he poses the question at Isaiah 57:11— “Was I not keeping silent and hiding matters?”
According to the context of the 30th chapter of Isaiah, it is during the distressing events immediately preceding the end of the world when Jehovah ultimately reveals himself as the Grand Instructor and Savior of those who trust him. That is why Isaiah 30:20 says: “And Jehovah will certainly give you people bread in the form of distress and water in the form of oppression; yet your Grand Instructor will no longer hide himself, and your eyes must become eyes seeing your Grand Instructor.”
The context indicates that Jehovah unveils himself as the Grand Instructor of his people during the judgment. Hence, we read at Isaiah 30:18: “And therefore Jehovah will keep in expectation of showing you favor, and therefore he will rise up to show you mercy. For Jehovah is a God of judgment. Happy are those keeping in expectation of him.”
But if God has already fully revealed himself as the Grand Instructor back in 1919, as the Watchtower intimates, what purpose could possibly be served by his servants remaining in expectation of being shown his favor and receiving his life-giving corrective instruction? The truth of the matter is, Jehovah’s people must yet be fed the bread of distress and drink the bitter waters of oppression and it is in that lowly circumstance in which God’s people will soon find themselves that Jehovah will reveal himself as the Grand Instructor.
In view of the foregoing, Isaiah 30:21 must also have a future fulfillment. That verse reads: “And your own ears will hear a word behind you saying: ‘This is the way. Walk in it, you people,’ in case you should go to the right or the left.”
Now, consider the following question: If Jehovah is leading and his people are presumably following him, and yet they hear his voice as if emanating from behind them, does this not indicate that God’s people have gone astray at the point when their Grand Instructor speaks to them as though from behind, as if beckoning them to turn around? Not according to the Watchtower. The Watchtower’s commentary on Isaiah insists that the prophecy is fulfilled “as Jehovah speaks through the pages of the Bible and through Bible-based publications provided by the faithful and discreet slave.”
But the Watchtower’s erroneous, self-serving interpretations aside, it should be apparent that God’s ultimate, eye-opening instruction does not come “through Bible-based publications” of the Watchtower. The great irony is that Bethel’s stubborn refusal to acknowledge its own need for God’s corrective counsel would appear to be one of the primary reasons the Grand Instructor will find it necessary to call out to his people; instructing them to turn around, to repent, so as to walk undeviatingly in a new path.
“WOE TO THE STUBBORN SONS”
At Isaiah 30:1 Jehovah addresses the Israelites as “stubborn sons,” saying to them: ‘“Woe to the stubborn sons,’ is the utterance of Jehovah, ‘those disposed to carry out counsel, but not that from me; and to pour out a libation, but not with my spirit, in order to add sin to sin; those who are setting out to go down to Egypt and who have not inquired of my own mouth…’”
It is worth noting that Isaiah 30:1 is not the only place in Isaiah where God pronounces “woe” upon his people. In fact, every chapter of Isaiah, beginning with the 28th chapter through the 31st, begins the same way. For example, Isaiah 28:1 says: “Woe to the eminent crown of the drunkards of Ephraim…” Isaiah 29:1 likewise reads: “Woe to Ariel, to Ariel…” Isaiah 31:1 says: “Woe to those going down to Egypt…but who…have not searched for Jehovah himself.”
Jehovah’s sons have access to their Father’s counsel, but to their shame they stubbornly refuse to rely upon God’s wisdom and spirit. Instead, they merely make a pretense of doing things God’s way, while trusting in their own powers and human schemes. As the context indicates, this development has more far-reaching implications than merely ancient Israel. But can Jehovah’s modern witnesses today truly be likened to those stubborn sons of Israel who brought woe upon themselves?
Sadly, yes. Jehovah’s Witnesses are similarly “disposed to carry out counsel, but not that from me”—meaning that Christians may put up an appearance of obeying God, but their sacrifices may not necessarily be in accord with God’s will.
How might Jehovah’s Witnesses have poured out a sacrificial “libation,” but without Jehovah’s blessing and spirit? The Watchtower’s compromising partnership with the United Nations is one sacrificial offering that surely did not have Jehovah’s blessing.
Just as the Israelites looked to Egypt for security, apparently lawyers representing the Watchtower have also cut questionable backroom deals with various political agencies besides the UN in order to advance the Watchtower’s interests in certain countries. For example, in the late 1990’s, the Watchtower was denied legal recognition by the Bulgarian government because, among other things, the authorities felt the Watchtower coerced its members into refusing blood transfusions by hanging over them the threat of sanctions from the congregation. The Watchtower appealed the Bulgarian decision to the European Commission on Human Rights. In 1998 the lawyers struck a compromise. The Bulgarian government would grant the Watchtower legal recognition and Jehovah’s Witnesses would be given conscientious objector status and in return the Watchtower would agree not to bring sanctions against Bulgarian witnesses that took blood transfusions. Of course, the leadership of the Watchtower made no mention of this compromise to Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Such willingness to bargain with the Devil in vital matters of faith indicates that the spiritual leaders and spokesmen for Jehovah’s Witnesses do indeed fit the profile described in prophecy as being“those disposed to carry out counsel, but not that from me.” Woe indeed for the stubborn sons who refuse to make an accounting and repent of their hypocrisy and treachery!
Although it may seem like a trifling matter, Jesus said that the person (or institution) unfaithful in what is least is also unfaithful in the big things too. That being the case, in view of the fact that there exists a disposition towards compromise for the sake of protecting the Watchtower’s corporate interests, how might the leadership of the Watchtower react when faced with the extinction of the organization in the future?
The fanciful belief among Jehovah’s Witnesses is that God will protect his so-called “visible organization” from all calamities. That is because many of the prophecies have been misapplied, so that it is simply inconceivable in the minds of Jehovah’s Witnesses that the organization could possibly become the object of Jehovah’s wrath. For example, contributing to that mindset the Watchtower applies the following verse to itself: “Look! I myself have created the craftsman, the one blowing upon the fire of charcoal and bringing forth a weapon as his workmanship. I myself, too, have created the ruinous man for wrecking work Any weapon whatever that will be formed against you will have no success and any tongue at all that will rise up against you in the judgment you will condemn.” (Isaiah 54:16-17)
However, that portion of Isaiah—although written well over a century before Jerusalem was destroyed by the Chaldeans—is actually a projection of God’s voice to his people living in exile in Babylon—assuring them of his blessing and that Jerusalem would be rebuilt and ultimately fulfill God’s grand purpose in connection with it. But the obvious fact is that the weapon God used against the wayward Jews did have “success.” Nothing could prevent Jerusalem from being destroyed once God had decreed it. In that respect Jerusalem typifies that which is called Jehovah’s earthly organization today.
The context of Isaiah has to do with God comforting his covenanted organization in the aftermath of the destruction of Jerusalem: “O woman afflicted, tempest-tossed, uncomforted, here I am laying with hard mortar your stones, and I will lay your foundation with sapphires. And I will make your battlements of rubies, and your gates of fiery glowing stones, and all your boundaries of delightsome stones. And all your sons will be persons taught by Jehovah, and the peace of your sons will be abundant.”
Although the physical city of Jerusalem was rebuilt the prophecy clearly speaks to greater spiritual realities in relation to the heavenly city of New Jerusalem. To be sure, the 21st chapter of Revelation depicts the New Jerusalem with similar symbolism. It is that symbolic city, the very kingdom of heaven, which will never be destroyed—even as Jesus assured his followers when he said in reference to his congregation: “the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”
Unquestionably, the leadership of the Watchtower is proving that they are like the stubborn sons, in that they support themselves upon inaccurate interpretations of prophecy. Like the ancient Jewish establishment that tried to silence Jehovah’s prophets, the Watchtower is also disposed to scoff at any suggestion that God’s judgments might apply to Jehovah’s Witnesses instead of Christendom.
That is why the prophet speaks for Jehovah to the stubborn sons, saying: “For it is a rebellious people, untruthful sons, sons who have not been willing to hear the law of Jehovah; who have said to the ones seeing, ‘You must not see,’ and to the ones having visions, ‘You must not envision for us any straightforward things. Speak to us smooth things; envision deceptive things.’”
While virtually every Bible prophet straightforwardly foretells how spiritual Israel will be brought into judgment with God, the Watchtower has deviously deflected all negative aspects of those prophetic visions to Christendom or applied them to the relatively insignificant events that befell the International Bible Students during the First World War. Or, they simply ignore certain sections of the Bible altogether. “Untruthful sons,” indeed!
The Watchtower has steadfastly refused to hear the law of Jehovah in this regard. “The ones having visions” are those who “see” the correct understanding of the prophetic visions that Jehovah originally gave to the biblical visionaries, seers, and prophets.
But, just as the Jews were unreceptive, the leadership of the organization has also proven to be unwilling to accept God’s counsel as contained in Scripture.
All of Jehovah’s Witnesses have preferred to hear “smooth things” and “deceptive things.” In this respect, the Watchtower’s preferred prophetic interpretations have been erected like an impenetrable, protective wall –presumed to be solidly fixed.
How wrong they are!
“A SWELLING OUT IN A HIGHLY RAISED WALL”
The 30th chapter of Isaiah announces Jehovah’s determination to knock down the “highly raised wall” of error the organization has built up. Jehovah says: “In view of your rejecting of this word, and since you men trust in defrauding and in what is devious and you support yourselves on it, therefore for you this error will become like a broken section about to fall down, a swelling out in a highly raised wall, the breakdown of which may come suddenly, in an instant. And one will certainly break it as in the breaking of a large jar of the potters, crushed to pieces without one’s sparing it, so that there cannot be found among its crushed pieces a fragment of earthenware with which to rake the fire from the fireplace or to skim water from a marshy place.”
But does Isaiah’s prophecy really apply to the Watchtower? Well, before answering that question consider another related prophecy in the 13th chapter of Ezekiel. Just as successive chapters in Isaiah pronounce woe upon God’s nation and people, Ezekiel 13:3 announces: “Woe to the stupid prophets, who are walking after their own spirit.”
Who are those whom Ezekiel is commanded to denounce? Jehovah goes on to say of the “stupid prophets”: “They have visioned what is untrue and a lying divination, those who are saying, ‘The utterance of Jehovah is,’ when Jehovah himself has not sent them, and they have waited to have a word come true. Is it not an untrue vision that you men have visioned, and a lying divination that you have said, when saying, ‘The utterance of Jehovah is,’ when I myself have spoken nothing?”
In considering the Christian parallel of the prophecy, who else other than the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society speaks authoritatively in the name of Jehovah? As all of Jehovah’s Witnesses know the Watchtower claims to be the earthly mouthpiece of God. As such, the organization claims that its prophetic interpretations are the authentic “utterance of Jehovah.” Especially is that the case when it comes to the scores of prophecies that the Watchtower has tied to 1914. It is as if for the last approximately 100 years the Watchtower and Jehovah’s Witnesses “have waited to have a word come true”—but in vain. Instead of vindicating their 1914 vision the passage of time only reveals more cracks in the wall.
In view of the fact that most of the Watchtower’s interpretations of prophecy are in error— as has been irrefutably established in the pages of this publication—from Jehovah’s standpoint all such dogma amounts to “an untrue vision.” And because the “prophets” use the organization’s authority and claim to speak in the name of Jehovah, as if they have directly derived their esoteric knowledge from a divine source, it is as though such visionaries are promoting “a lying divination.”
But, again, does this really apply to those who are actually God’s people or merely those who falsely claim to be such?
Ezekiel 13:9-10 provides the answer: “And my hand has come to be against the prophets that are visioning untruth and that are divining a lie. In the intimate group of my people they will not continue on, and in the register of the house of Israel they will not be written, and to the soil of Israel they will not come; and you people will have to know that I am the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, for the reason, yes, for the reason that they have led my people astray, saying, ‘There is peace!’ when there is no peace, and there is one that is building a partition wall, but in vain there are those plastering it with whitewash.”
The prophecy clearly states that the “stupid prophets” exist “in the intimate group of my people,” and that as a result of their misleading influence, Jehovah says, “they have led my people astray.” Naturally, the Watchtower teaches that the condemned false visionaries typify the clergy of Christendom. But if that is the case how is it that the lying prophets are located “in the intimate group of my people”? If Jehovah’s Witnesses are the true people of God, how is it that the supposed “stupid prophets” of Christendom have the power and influence to lead God’s people astray?
The prophets against whom Jehovah is speaking are the most prominent men in the organization. They are responsible for misleading Jehovah’s Witnesses by means of false and lying visions. It is the very teachings of the Watchtower that continually tickles the ears of Jehovah’s Witnesses; assuring them, ‘there is peace, all is well in spiritual paradise.’
Undeniably, the Watchtower has gone to great lengths to convince Jehovah’s Witnesses that Jehovah became king in 1914—applying nearly every prophecy in the Bible to that date—thus, blinding trusting Christians to the reality of a future presence of Christ. The analogy of a wall is apt. Bethel has constructed an elaborate and extensive wall-like structure of biblical prophecy that serves primarily to fortify the place of the Watchtower Society as Jehovah’s organization. The organization’s very logo—a stone and mortar watchtower—is an ironical manifestation of the metaphorical.
By such vain efforts to support a lie, it is as if the Watchtower’s apologists keep plastering coat after coat of whitewash on an organizational “wall” of their own making. Regardless of their efforts, when Jehovah actually does assert his kingship and judge his people the Watchtower’s whitewashed prophetic wall is sure to be toppled and pulverized. Jehovah, in fact, commands his true prophet to tell the “stupid prophets” beforehand that their whitewashed wall is doomed to fall.
Ezekiel 13:11-16 reads: “Say to those plastering with whitewash that it will fall. A flooding downpour will certainly occur, and you, O hailstones, will fall, and a blast of windstorms itself will cause a splitting. And, look! the wall must fall. Will it not be said to you men, ‘Where is the coating with which you did the plastering?’ Therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah has said, ‘I will also cause a blast of windstorms to burst forth in my rage, and in my anger there will occur a flooding downpour, and in rage there will be hailstones for an extermination. And I will tear down the wall that you men have plastered with whitewash and bring it into contact with the earth, and its foundation must be exposed. And she will certainly fall, and you must come to an end in the midst of her; and you will have to know that I am Jehovah. And I will bring my rage to its finish upon the wall and upon those plastering it with whitewash, and I shall say to you men: ‘The wall is no more, and those plastering it are no more, the prophets of Israel that are prophesying to Jerusalem and that are visioning for her a vision of peace, when there is no peace,’ is the utterance of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah.”
That the above prophecy of Ezekiel applies to Christ’s congregation during the “second time that he appears” is evident from a parallel prophecy in the 28th chapter of Isaiah. The significance of Isaiah’s prophecy is that God uses the very same analogy of a tempest-driven, flooding downpour that washes away the falsehoods and delusions that the bragging rulers have imposed upon God’s people.
Isaiah 28:14-16 reads: “Therefore hear the word of Jehovah, you braggarts, you rulers of this people who are in Jerusalem: Because you men have said: ‘We have concluded a covenant with Death; and with Sheol we have effected a vision; the overflowing flash flood, in case it should pass through, will not come to us, for we have made a lie our refuge and in falsehood we have concealed ourselves’; therefore this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah has said: ‘Here I am laying as a foundation in Zion a stone, a tried stone, the precious corner of a sure foundation. No one exercising faith will get panicky.’”
In proof that the prophecy has not been fulfilled yet, Isaiah 28:16 situates the actual establishment of Christ’s kingdom as coinciding with the flooding downpour of Jehovah’s denunciation. Clearly, the prophecy reveals that Jehovah lays the kingdom stone in Zion—an obvious reference to Christ’s kingdom—at the same time “the overflowing flash flood” is unleashed. Those who imagine they have a working agreement with Death and Sheol are those who trust solely in their place within the Organization. To their horror that seeming place of refuge will be swept away in a flooding hailstorm of persecution.
True Christians, that is, those who really know and trust Jehovah and have faith in Christ, will not panic during the turmoil that ensues. Their faith is stronger than organizational loyalty. Needless to say, the actual return of Christ will shatter the Watchtower’s parousia chimera, along with the hopes of those who foolishly cling to the Lie when it is finally swept away by Jehovah’s onrushing judgment.
Returning to the 30th chapter of Isaiah, the prophecy goes on to say: “For this is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel, has said: ‘By coming back and resting you people will be saved. Your mightiness will prove to be simply in keeping undisturbed and in trustfulness.’ But you were not willing.”
According to Jehovah’s declaration, his people are not going to trust him when the test comes. No doubt that will be because Jehovah’s Witnesses have been induced to trust in our own strength and in the Watchtower. The tragic result of not fully trusting God will be that “a thousand will tremble on account of the rebuke of one; on account of the rebuke of five you will flee until you will have remained like a mast on the top of a mountain and like a signal on a hill.”
It is in the context of Jehovah’s proud people cowering before the tyrannical enemy that Isaiah 30:18 says: “Therefore Jehovah will keep in expectation of showing you favor, and therefore he will rise up to show you mercy.”
The painful lesson that all men must soon learn is that Jehovah God is the rightful Sovereign of this earth. The nightmare that is destined to descend upon this world will prove beyond all doubt that humans simply do not have the wisdom to rule themselves.
Ultimately, Jehovah’s Witnesses must also come to know that Jehovah is God in a way that we have heretofore not known.
In the aftermath of the collapse of the organizational wall the faithful who accept Jehovah’s severe disciplining and his kindly instruction will reject all vestiges of the Society, as if an abhorrent idol. The 22nd verse foretells: “And you people must defile the overlaying of your graven images of silver and the close-fitting covering of your molten statue of gold. You will scatter them. Like a menstruating woman, you will say to it: ‘Mere dirt!’”
According to the apostle Paul a lofty thing among men is a disgusting thing to Jehovah. During the judgment Jehovah will let his disgust become known, so that never again will Jehovah’s people foolishly exalt any so-called earthly organization to the lofty place now occupied by the Watchtower.
Jehovah’s chastened people will discard their organizational idol and all that has been attached to it, as if “mere dirt.”
At Isaiah 30:26, Jehovah indicates the magnitude and intensity of the truth that is yet to be revealed to his people by comparing it to literal light. It reads: “And the light of the full moon must become as the light of the glowing sun; and the very light of the glowing sun will become seven times as much, like the light of seven days, in the day that Jehovah binds up the breakdown of his people and heals even the severe wound resulting from the stroke by him.”
The Watchtower’s latest “commentary” on Isaiah offers no meaningful explanation of the prophecy, other than to say: “What a thrilling climax to this brilliant prophecy! The glory of God will shine forth in all its splendor. The blessings in store for God’s faithful worshipers will exceed vastly—sevenfold—anything that they have experienced before.”
While the above comment is true, discerning persons ought to ask: What is the setting of the occasion when the spiritual light from Jehovah will intensify sevenfold? The preceding verse of Isaiah provides the answer: “in the day of the big slaughter when the towers fall.” Curiously, the Watchtower’s supposed verse-by-verse commentary fails to even quote the scripture, let alone offer some explanation. Nonetheless, an honest and reasoned interpretation of the prophecy leads to the inescapable conclusion that the foretold spiritual “breakdown of his people” and “severe wound” by the disciplinary stroke of God immediately precedes the healing light. Therefore, “the day of the big slaughter when the towers fall” cannot be an insignificant event, but undoubtedly relates to the coming collapse of the Watchtower and the slaughter of her stupid prophets.