Genesis 1 2 TLV
Good News,  Tanakh,  Torah

How Genesis 1:2 can help you lead a friend to the LORD

Followers of Messiah Yeshua (the Lord Jesus Christ) need to be able to defend their faith, and 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!

Today, I will focus on how the growing Jehovah’s Witness organization presents both a challenge and opportunity to Bible-believing Christians to share their faith and lead a friend to the True LORD of the Bible.

Truth is superior to cult religions and teachings

As the Jehovah Witness cult continues to grow around the world, at some point you will surely encounter a member of the Jehovah’s Witness organization. You might think I am being very harsh calling it a cult, but given the high level of deception and falsehood, it certainly cannot be described in kinder terms.

Lead a friend to Messiah
Genesis 1:2 can help you lead a friend to the LORD (and away from cult doctrines!)

When we pastored a congregation in the southern USA, we were astounded by the amount of influence the Jehovah’s Witnesses had been gaining among the Latino/Hispanic community. The JW movement had succeeded in convincing Spanish-speaking farm workers that an adulterated bible, the “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 versions these immigrants were accustomed to from their youth in Mexico and Central America. 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.

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 (most say about 30) men were reportedly gathered in a building in Brooklyn, New York, invented the religion and produced a “translation” of the Bible without any knowledge of the original Biblical languages of Hebrew or Greek. Generous portions of Scripture were changed (in complete defiance of the command in Revelation to never add to or take away from the LORD’s Book).

While it is true that many of the first followers of our Messiah Jesus were not highly educated men, it is not true that folks should be wholeheartedly trusting 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.

Genesis 1:2 is a perfect starting point for effective evangelism (I know, the e-word isn’t popular, but we MUST share the Good News!)

I discovered that one of the easiest ways to strike up a conversation with a Jehovah’s Witness follower is simply to ask them about the Holy Spirit. I would ask them to open their Bible to Genesis 1:2. It is a well-known verse which describes how the Spirit of God hovered over the waters at creation, but in the false translation used by the JW 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, but for those who are newer to the JW ranks, many were able to talk to me about the glaring issue related to the unpardonable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit gives believers the words we need when we need them – and I can assure you, He is faithful and can help you to reach those who have been falsely indoctrinated with JW falsehoods.

It is no small thing that the Jehovah’s Witnesses cult organization has injected such deception and confusion into vulnerable people who are looking for answers to life’s questions. There are so many false doctrines in the JW religion, but perhaps the easiest place to start is with the nature of God, who has been revealed to humanity as the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We can discuss semantics on the “echad,” the doctrine of “Trinity,” or the “Oneness of God” another time.

The Simple Truth

For today, rest assured God has been revealed as the Eternal One, Heavenly Father, the Prince of Peace, Lord of All, and the Mighty Comforter, the one who saves, fully God and fully human revealed in Messiah Jesus, the conquerer of death, and the King forever.

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Genesis 1:2 TLV Tree of Life Version

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