Parashat B’reishit (Genesis 1:1-6:8) (Updated 10/13/2022 5783 B”H)
Beginning at the Beginning
Each year after Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles), it is customary to begin re-reading through Torah (the first five books of the Bible). I personally believe it is vital to supplement Torah reading with readings from the rest of the Bible, including the Prophets and the rest of the Tanakh as well as, of course, the New Testament (B’rit Chadasha).
So it is the time of year when we begin back at Genesis (known in Hebrew as B’reishit).
Beginning at the beginning of time.
We do well to understand that in every undertaking in life, we ought embark only with our understanding framed by the history of creation. If we know our Creator and are in right relationship with Him, then we will understand our role as the created and realize our need for restoration and salvation.
Those who do not yet live in right relationship with the LORD, the Creator of All, cannot be called His children.
But there is Good News!
As God’s children, it is imperative that we share this Good News so that those who are perishing around us would be able to repent and know our Savior, too, and so, too, become children of the Most High God.
I will show you today a very simple method to share your faith, beginning at the beginning.
Are you confident in your ability to share and defend your faith?
As followers of Messiah Yeshua (the Lord Jesus Christ), it is our joyous duty to share with others the Good News of salvation.
We also need to be able to defend our faith.
Demonstrate that our faith is unshakeable!
It is so important to be equipped to share with others the Truth!
This is often called “apologetics.”
But rather than apologizing for what you believe, your task is to share it!
And be able to explain why you believe what you believe! Be confident! The LORD is with you and will give you the words and wisdom when you need it.
Today, I will focus on how one simple verse from Genesis can be used as a powerful spiritual weapon against one of the fastest growing cults: The Jehovah’s Witness organization.
The Jehovah Witness sect presents both a challenge and opportunity to Bible-believing Christians.
Are you ready to challenge yourself to share your faith?
Check out a simple and straightforward way to lead a friend to the True LORD of the Bible!
First, we must recognize that Truth is superior to cult religions and teachings
The Jehovah Witness cult continues to grow around the world. It is highly likely you will encounter a Jehovah’s Witness follower at some point.
You might think I am being very harsh calling it a cult.
However, given the high level of deception and falsehood, softer terms will not do.
Believers: we need to be educated about sects and cults in order to ask the Spirit of Truth to help us evangelize and minister to members of these erroneous organizations.
We also need to pray that the Spirit of all Truth, God’s Holy Spirit, the only True God would help us show genuine love, kindness, and compassion toward all of those who are trapped in confusion.
In order to properly witness to a member of a cult religion, we must ourselves be confident in Whom we have believed and know the Truth of Scripture for ourselves.
Second, it is wise to have a solid understanding of trustworthy Bible translations
My husband and I pastored a mission congregation in the southern USA for many years.
The influence of the Jehovah’s Witnesses in the area astounded us.
It was a region impacted by true spiritual darkness.
The Jehovah’s Witness cult members were particularly successful in sowing their seeds of confusion among the Latino/Hispanic community in that area.
The JW movement convinced many Spanish-speaking farm workers in the community that an adulterated bible, their “New World Translation” was superior to any standard (ie. reputable) English or Spanish language Bibles such as the King James Version or Reina Valera 1960.
It is important to educate new believers about trustworthy Bible translations.
We had our work cut out for us teaching the Truth of Scripture as many lay folk didn’t seem to really care about the scholastic origins of the Bibles they were reading.
Third, be familiar with the unsettling founding of the Jehovah Witness Movement
If you have ever studied comparative religion or sects, you may know the founding of the Jehovah Witness movement sounds more like a business enterprise than a revelatory experience.
A group of men (most say about 30) reportedly gathered in a Brooklyn, NY building and invented the religion.
They produced a “translation” of the Bible without knowing the Biblical languages Hebrew or Greek. Again, this is known as the “New World Translation” or NWT.
The men changed generous portions of Scripture to suit their doctrinal inventions (in complete defiance of the command in Revelation 22:18-19 to never add to or take away from the LORD’s Book):
“I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book. If anyone adds to them, God shall add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his share in the Tree of Life and the Holy City, which are written in this book.” Revelation 22:18-19
It is true many of the first followers of our Messiah Jesus were not highly educated men.
However, it is not true that folks should wholeheartedly trust translations from people who cannot at least rudimentarily engage the languages they are working to translate.
The sinister nature of the NWT “translation” becomes obvious from the very beginning of the tarnished text: right there in Genesis.
How to use Genesis 1:2 as a Perfect Starting Point for Effective Evangelism (particularly with Jehovah’s Witness followers)
I discovered an easy way to strike up a conversation with Jehovah Witness followers.
Simply ask them about the Holy Spirit:
I would ask a Jehovah’s Witness to open their Bible to Genesis 1:2.
A well known verse, it tells us the Spirit of God hovered over the waters at creation:
Ruach Elohim is Hebrew for the “Spirit of God.”
You may be more familiar with the New King James Version’s phrasing:
Help people recognize the spiritual danger:
In the false translation used by the Jehovah’s Witness organization (the New World Translation), the word for the Holy Spirit (Ruach Elohim in Hebrew) has been completely eliminated and replaced by a lower-case and non-personal term, the “active force.”
Those who have participated in the JW organization for a long time may be more hostile to you trying to help them, but I found that for those who are newer to the JW ranks, many would talk to me.
Many were open to discussing the glaring issue related to the unpardonable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit of God (Matthew 12:31).
The Holy Spirit gives believers the words we need when we need them.
And I can assure you, He is faithful.
The LORD of Truth can help you to reach those who have been falsely indoctrinated with the lies of the enemy that have been adopted by the Jehovah’s Witness organization.
He can save those who have been deceived.
So there is great hope!
The Jehovah Witness cult has injected a stronghold of deception and confusion into vulnerable people looking for answers to life’s questions.
There are SO MANY false doctrines in the JW religion!
Another easy place to start is with the nature of God.
God has been revealed to humanity as the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We can discuss semantics on “echad,” the doctrine of “Trinity,” or the “Oneness of God” another time. But the point is, we believe in the Holiness and Deity of God. We do not diminish the Son’s standing by denying His divinity – He is Fully God, and we certainly do not take away our reverence and respect for the Holy Spirit of God.
The Simple Truth
For today, rejoice that you know the God of all Truth!
He is the Eternal One, Heavenly Father, the Prince of Peace, Lord of All, and the Mighty Comforter!
Our LORD is the one who saves, fully God and fully human revealed in Messiah Yeshua (Jesus Christ our LORD)!
He is the Conquerer of death and the Conquerer of Confusion. He is King forever!
Do not shy away from sharing your faith!
There are SO many people who are hungry for the TRUTH!
You just might be the very person the LORD wants to use to bring others to know Him.
Are you reading this and have questions about the Truth of our Savior Jesus Christ (Yeshua haMashiach)? Please reach out! We would love to help you know more about the True Savior and Messiah who loves you and died for you so you could live eternally with Him. Pray today for members of the Jehovah’s Witness organization, that they would come to be free from the lies of the enemy.
Are you a member of the Jehovah’s Witness organization? Are you seeking to know the Truth about the Messiah, the Son of God? Please contact us, we would love to help you walk with the LORD: