Jehovah’s Witnesses Demonizing Higher Education

(THIS IS A VIDEO TRANSCRIPT. Speech of Gerrit Lösch, member of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s witnesses, given in Italian during a special JW convention on May 22, 2005 in the city of Monza, near Milan, Italy.)

Gerrit Lösch, member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses

Gerrit Lösch, member of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses

“Going to college or not may be a reflexion of your faith or lack of your faith, and it may indicate how present the imminence of the Great Tribulation in your mind. What is undoubtable is that the time left is reduced, as Paul said I Corintians 7:29. If you are currently going to college, why don’t you meditate in prayer on the possibility of dropping out and doing something better? But for us, who scrutinize of the meaning of the world events in the light of Bible prophecy, there are more worthy reasons for not putting worldly career first in our lives. We could liken ourselves to someone who sees a building with a sign that reads, “The company is running out of business.” Would you apply for a job there? Of course not. And if we were working for such a company, we would wisely look for a job elsewhere. Well, on all the institutions of this world lies a sing reading imminent liquidation. The end is near. Yes, the Bible assures us that the world is passing away. Therefore we will be wise, and we will not imitate those who are an integral part of it.

Now you have listened to the advise. What will you do now? Some advocate going to college by citing the example of some elders’ children who are attending college or that did so (in the past). We are not able nor willing to tell you what you should do. Your parents and you should make the decision. We are not the masters over your faith. However, the Faithful and Discreet Slave has the responsibility to warn against spiritual dangers and to encourage to put Kingdom interest first. So, the Slave discourages from going to college for a long period of time.

I have often times heard experiences of individuals who were about to complete their college programs, and who dropped out when they learned the truth. Some other baptized individuals have turned down scholarships. What will you do? What decision will you make? Will you refuse or not? Will you get a university education or not? You will be accountable to Jehovah for this. We would like to praise those in the audience who dropped out the college when they heard the truth, (as we praise) those who other listening to this talk will make the same decision. Maybe you still want to advocate the possibility of going to college. You may say, “You see Brother X going to college, and now he is serving in the congregation and is also a pioneer. “ True, he may survived college, so to speak. But what follows is a true experience of a young man who suffered from a compulsive disorder which made him wash his hands over and over again, even 100 times a day. This disorder discouraged him so much, that one day he decided to commit suicide. He bought a rifle, put it in his mouth and pulled the trigger. The bullet, however, didn’t kill him but instead perforated the part of his brain that was responsible for his compulsive disorder. He survived and after that he managed to live a normal life. Yes, its true, he survived… he survived. But would you recommend that other people imitate what that young man did? Similarly, some have survived college, but would you recommend that to others?

Instead of investing in a higher education, it would be advisable to grow in the knowledge of Jehovah. In order to start knowing the Bible better, we must read the Bible every day. Every day. Are we going to do that?”

A Better Place than Earth

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And God said, “Let there be light” and there was light.

He gave borders for water that cause rivers to appear and that the sea whose struggling waves will never overflow the dry ground. He clothed the ground with fresh green grass and different kinds of plants whose flowers seemed to be competing with their beautiful colors and fragrance. He made trees of different kinds, bearing variety of fruits that provide nutrients for those who will eat. He made different kinds of animals, big and small, flying and creeping, jumping and swimming, all for the benefit of the man He will create. He cause mountains and hills to rise; forms of land that declare the greatness of their Creator. He made the sun to give heat and light in day, and moon and stars to shine at night. He provides rain to water every trees and plants, and air to sustain the life of everyone. And then on the sixth-day, He created man according to His image, the crown of His creation. This is how the Lord God formed and beautified man’s habitation; a planet perfect in beauty and order; without single stain of anything that is unpleasant in the sight of God… until sin and death entered.

 After the entrance of sin, Adam and Eve, with all of their sons and descendants suffered its consequences; misery, pain, sickness and death. Before his own eyes, Adam witnessed all the terrible results of his own transgression. Grass and leaves withered, beautiful flowers faded, animals and beasts became no more subjected to him, and his physical stature and endurance and moral and intellectual power were all deteriorated, and the world was filled with misery of every type. And upon the earth, God declared, “Curse is the ground for thy sake.” The earth, with all the things in its surface, suffered with that curse. Thus, as plants, animals, and man die, the earth will fade also. Isaiah said,

 “The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.

 Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate…

 The earth is utterly broken down, the earth is clean dissolved, the earth is moved exceedingly.

The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again.” (Isaiah 24:5-6, 19-20)

 The earth is the habitation of life, but it is a temporal life, a life that bound to die. All things in it are not eternal. They will all pass away. The withering of grass, the drying of rivers, the death of both animals and man, all these suggesting that the earth is a temporary habitation. Paul stated, “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (II Corinthians 4:18) This was the reason why Christ taught His disciples to love not their own lives more than the cause of God neither seek friendship with the world for it is enmity against God, but rather seek those things that are eternal; things that will never fade; things that are prepared by God for those who loved Him. Yes, there is a place, an earth, prepared by God; New Heavens and a New Earth unstained by wickedness or death but a place where righteousness and beauty dwell. “And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.” “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” (Rev. 21:5; Isa. 65:17) There shall be no hunger, neither thirst anymore; neither the light of the sun, nor any heat, and God shall wipe away all tears in the eyes of the saved.

 This earth is not worthy to be inherited by the saints. The everlasting life that they will receive upon the return of Christ is not worthy to enjoy in a place consumed by curse and misery. Things that are eternal are always for eternal things, and this is what the saints should always look for unlike the others whose hope rest only in this earth. By leaning with temporal things, and by hoping for the things that are seen, hopes for heaven and eternity seemed to be an illusion for them. But this is not what Christ had taught. The apostle said, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” (Col. 3:1-2)

 Try to look upon the great patriarchs of old such as Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who, in spite of the rich land that God promised to them, they choose to become sojourners in that land because they look not to an earthly inheritance but that which is in heaven.

 “By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.

By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:

For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God…

These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.

And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned.

But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.” (Heb. 11:8-10, 13-16)