Here’s another of my favorite topics to discuss with Jehovah’s Witnesses: Adoption.
Specifically, I like to bring up the subject of adoption as sons (and daughters) of Jehovah, as the Bible teaches in Romans 8:14-16 and Galatians 4:1-6. Here’s how the conversation typically goes:
Me: I’m excited about what I’ve been learning from the Bible.
JW: That’s good!
Me: Yes, lately I’ve been learning about being adopted as sons and daughters of Jehovah. Do you know about that from Romans 8?
JW: [Thinking] Um, yes, I think so.
Me: Oh, it’s really great. Paul says that “you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” Isn’t that great? It says that we can be adopted as Jehovah’s sons, and we can call him “Dad!” I have been adopted as Jehovah’s son! Have you?
JW: Yes, I think so.
Me: Well, here’s something that I find disturbing. My JW friend told me that this passage applies only to the anointed 144,000, and not to the rest of the believers. Is that true?
JW: Oh, actually, yes, that passage is about the anointed class of believers, but we can benefit indirectly from it.
Me: What do you mean, “benefit indirectly?” Do you mean you’re like a foster child, or a stepchild? Where does the Bible teach that?
JW: No, that’s not right.
Me: So are you adopted by Jehovah as his son? Because I believe I am, and it’s fantastic! It’s the best thing that has ever happened to me! And I can pray to him, and call him “Dad!” Have you been adopted by Jehovah?
JW: Well, all believers will eventually be adopted as sons, after the final testing.
Me: That can’t be right, can it? I mean, this passage talks about it like it has already happened, doesn’t it? You see, this is what I find to be very disturbing to me. I’m really concerned about my JW friends, that they’re being denied so many of the blessings that scripture says that all believers have. I really have a hard time with this two-class system, don’t you?
JW: I don’t have a problem with it.
Me: Well, I do. I have a big problem with it, because I think that system has been imposed on the Bible, and that the Bible doesn’t teach that. It’s very disturbing to me.
JW: I have to go now. I’m meeting someone.
Me: Okay, but it’s worth thinking about, and researching, right?
JW: Yeah, I’ll research it some more.
Me: I hope you’re not just saying that, and that you will look into it. Romans 8 is a great place to start. Just read it by itself, without any publications telling you what to think about it.
JW: Yeah, okay.
Me: Thanks for talking with me. Have a good week!
JW: You too.
That’s the end of our conversation, but it’s really just the beginning. I pray that they would not be able to forget the scripture that I shared, and that it would continue to bother them. It works! I have had JW friends tell me later that they could not get a verse that I shared out of their mind, weeks later! God says that his word does not return to him empty, but accomplishes what He sends it to do (Isaiah 55:11). I also pray that you, my reader, will come to realize the depth of God’s love for you, as you discover His adoption of YOU. Have you been adopted by Jehovah?