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.:DATING AND MARRYING A JEHOVAH’S WITNESS: Should I convert to the Jehovah’s Witness religion to continue dating my Jehovah's Witness girlfriend? What should we expect if I don't convert and she leaves her religion for me?
You and your girlfriend are in a tough situation. It is never easy to face differences in religious beliefs in any dating/marriage relationship especially when it involves family backgrounds, and the Jehovah’s Witness policy of “shunning” those who leave the religion compounds the complexities of your situation.
IF YOU BECOME A JEHOVAH’S WITNESS TO WIN HER…
You asked if you would be allowed to continue your dating relationship with this lady if you were to convert to this religion to please her Jehovah’s Witness parents. We don’t know where your personal religious beliefs stand in comparison to the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses, but if your only motivation in converting would be to continue your dating relationship, would that be an honest reason to convert, or would you be converting under a false pretense with ulterior motives? In other words, would you be looking into this religion with a goal of converting if you were not dating this Jehovah’s Witness lady at all?
The Jehovah’s Witness religion is not a religion that you can just loosely convert to. It requires full commitment of your time, energy, resources, and loyalty. If you are not willing to put the dictates of this organization and its leadership over your own personal life goals and agendas, you might as well forget the notion of becoming a Jehovah’s Witness. Partial loyalty is simply not acceptable in this religion. This is one of the reasons your girlfriend is being pressured by her Jehovah’s Witness parents to stop dating you and to only date someone who is a Jehovah’s Witness.
The simple fact that she is dating you puts her “spiritually” in a questionable light among her Jehovah’s Witness friends and relatives. They may have already begun to think of her as being “weak” in her faith because she is seeking a relationship with a “worldly” person. At any point in your relationship, the elders can intervene and command her to stop dating you. If she does not obey right away and cut her relationship off with you, she will be “disfellowshipped.”
If your motive for wanting to convert is simply to win the approval of her family and the Jehovah’s Witness leadership, it will not take long before the elders in her congregation will be able to detect your limited loyalty to the organization. Are you prepared to face the potential consequences for converting under false pretenses and the harassment you would face if you do not measure up to all the demands of this religion? Are you prepared to give the Watchtower your full loyalty and devotion and to force your future children into this system as well? The following are some of the sacrifices you and your family would have to make if you become a Jehovah’s Witness:
Did you know that when Jehovah’s Witnesses baptize people today, they not only baptize in the name of the Father and the Son, but they baptize in the name of the “spirit-directed organization”? If this is not a red flag that in baptism, you are forced to give your complete loyalty to an “organization,” I don’t know what is! Are you prepared to follow and obey Watchtower doctrines and policies, without question?
If you have just begun to “study” with Jehovah’s Witnesses, you may not have yet come across some of these unbiblical Jehovah’s Witness doctrines that you will be required to accept as “the truth”:
IS COMPROMISING YOUR FAITH REALLY WORTH THE DAMAGE?
We could go on about the false teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses that you would be required to believe and TEACH if you decide to become one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, but we would like you to consider the following question: Is the reward of gaining your Jehovah’s Witness girlfriend really worth compromising the faith and devotion you have toward the true God of the Bible? If you don’t have any religious beliefs at this point in your life, have you considered the freedom from guilt and sin that Jesus Christ offers you and your girlfriend if you decide turn to Him alone for salvation and spiritual fulfillment? Jesus said: “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” —John 14:6 5. You don’t need to enslave yourself, your marriage, and your family to the dictates of a religious organization in order to have eternal life because Jesus said we are to go “through” Him alone for truth and life:
A few years ago, we counseled a Christian man who was in a position much like yours. 2 Corinthians 6:14 warns Christian believers: “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” Despite this warning, he went against our advice not to marry his non-devout Jehovah’s Witness girlfriend. A few months after they were married, the Jehovah’s Witness lady went back into the organization and the strain on the marriage became so great that her “Christian” husband converted to the Jehovah’s Witnesses just to bring some unity into the home. It did not work and within a year, he turned to drinking to numb the stress he was facing in his marriage. A year after that, they were divorced and the children torn apart in a custody battle. Compromising the truth is never worth the damage!
CAN YOUR GIRLFRIEND WALK AWAY WITHOUT CONSEQUENCES?
You asked if there is any possible way for your girlfriend to walk away from this religion without repercussions on her ability to communicate with her Jehovah’s Witness parents. If she was “baptized” there is NO honorable way out of this religion. Watchtower policy dictates that one who officially “disassociates” from Jehovah’s Witnesses is to be “shunned” by her family as if she were “disfellowshipped” for doing something wrong. Since the elders view baptism as a commitment to the Watchtower organization, if she tries to walk away, they will want a letter of “disassociation” from her or they will decide to “disfellowship” her for “apostasy” in dating a non-Jehovah’s Witness. So, the key for her ability to walk away without being shunned according to official Watchtower policy is based upon whether or not she was ever baptized into this religion. If she has not been baptized, she can walk away at any time and her parents would not be required by Watchtower policy to “shun” her. However, we know of cases where Jehovah’s Witness families decided to shun their un-baptized Jehovah's Witness relatives anyway because they refused to return to the organization. So, there are no guarantees on whether or not your un-baptized Jehovah’s Witness girlfriend will be able to walk away without being shunned by her Jehovah’s Witness parents. It is best to be prepared in case it happens.
IF YOUR GIRLFRIEND IS WILLING TO WALK AWAY, BE PREPARED…
If your girlfriend decides to walk away from the organization, you need to be prepared to deal with the fact that her Jehovah’s Witness parents will likely challenge her at some point in your marriage to come back. They may even harass her by sending Jehovah’s Witnesses to the door or by calling periodically to entice her into attending meetings at the Kingdom Hall. If they succeed in getting her back involved in this religion, it will not be long before they will strongly advise her to get baptized and you will be faced with losing her heart to this religion. Therefore, you must realize that even if she is willing to “walk away” at this point in your relationship, this is no guarantee that she will stay away.
Watchtower mind control runs deep and all it takes is for some crisis to arise in your marriage or family and your girlfriend/wife will run back to the Jehovah’s Witness organization for shelter. Consider how many years she has been programmed with the fear that “Armageddon” (God’s battle to end wickedness) will break out on the earth at any moment. With rumors of wars in the world and a volatile economy, it would not take much for triggers of fear and guilt to arise in her heart. The Watchtower programs its followers to be ready for Armageddon by faithfully preaching the Kingdom message door-to-door and obeying all of its rules. So, deep down inside her heart, your Jehovah’s Witness girlfriend believes that if Armageddon comes and she is not faithfully obeying all of the rules of the Watchtower organization, Jehovah God will destroy her in a ruthless way. Is it any wonder that so many Jehovah’s Witness spouses return to the organization when a crisis occurs in their lives?
It is your duty to make sure that before you get married, your girlfriend has been properly deprogrammed against Watchtower fear and guilt tactics. This can only be done by her willingness to read anti-Jehovah’s Witness literature and websites that exposed the Watchtower Society for what it is. Until her beliefs about this organization being “God’s organization” have been properly dispelled, its authority in her life will continue to threaten your dating relationship and the health of your future marriage.
HOW TO DEPROGRAM YOUR JEHOVAH’S WITNESS GIRLFRIEND…
Now is the time to test your Jehovah’s Witness girlfriend’s commitment to your dating relationship. Challenge her by saying something like this:
If she really loves you and is committed to your relationship, she will be willing to read the following books and articles with you. If not, you need to walk away from this dating relationship before you both get hurt. Although the New World Translation Bible is biased to support Watchtower doctrines, encourage her to compare her translation with your Bible and the Kingdom Interlinear Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures (Greek text of the New Testament Bible Scripture published by the Watchtower Society). It contains the English words underneath the Greek text so you can compare Bible accuracy. As you examine this literature together, your girlfriend will be shocked to learn the facts that the Watchtower is hiding from her:
For a true meaningful relationship, it is important that you both be on the same page in regard to your views of God and salvation. The resources listed above will aid you in accomplishing this task, but we also encourage you to read the Bible together verse-by-verse and to discuss what it means based upon the context. For more information on deprogramming a Jehovah’s Witness, see the following article:
ASKING AN ELDER TO BLESS YOUR MARRIAGE…
As far as your question on whether you can ask a Jehovah’s Witness elder for a blessing upon your marriage, you can just about dismiss this idea unless you decide to become a “baptized” Jehovah’s Witness. If your goal is to have a marriage free from the control of legalistic men and one that places the teachings of the Bible as supreme in your home, you will need to seek elsewhere for a blessing—preferably a Christian pastor who teaches the Bible verse-by-verse. Many Protestant Christian churches do this and many have pre-marital counseling classes that would be beneficial for you as well. The following article will give you important guidelines to follow in finding a healthy, Bible-based church:
For more information on dating, marriage and family issues concerning Jehovah’s Witnesses see:
1. See Consumer Reports, September 1999, p. 63
They are all there for me!
“I had Jehovah’s Witnesses visiting for six years. … The sad thing is now I have their beliefs in my head. So I put myself into God’s hands and asked for direction. …Well, the feeling of freedom is amazing. I am like a child, learning again for the first time. The reason I had to write to you was the Karen and Cindy conversations. Instead of me asking for help, one question at a time, they are all there for me!! It seems as if ‘Karen’ could read my mind.It’s so lovely for things to fall into place, mainly that ‘What happens when we die?’ This was a very big issue for me. I was scared while I did not understand even the tiny bit I do now. It’s such a joy. Instead of feeling unworthy(were all sinners I know) and feeling I would never be saved or go to Heaven. So, please thank God and Jesus with me for such help.”
I have to tell you how your website saved my life.
“I have been a baptized Witness since 1995, and I have to tell you how you have saved my life. Every couple of years I get this gnawing sense that this is not quite right, that I am not 100% vested in what the Watchtower Society says. …Lately, I have stopped attending meetings and my daughter, 13, has begged me not to make her go back. So I have been praying and chatting with friends outside the organization……I can’t tell you my sense of relief when I stumbled upon your site and started to read the articles. I want to cry, but I’m at work. I can’t wait to get home because I am so excited I can barely stand it! Please, please, how can I meet others who feel this way? I sure could use the fellowship. Again, thanks for the work you do.”
God bless you for the difference you are making.
“My brother and I were raised by a Jehovah's Witness mother. I am 52 years old now and still haven't been able to shake the stigma of the experience. My brother wasn't as lucky as me and ended up taking his own life at 17. I have been through everything ... I can't express how much I appreciate what you are doing... God bless for the difference you are making.”
I do not feel so alone!
“Thank you for creating this website. After reading stories of former Jehovah's Witnesses, I do not feel so alone. My resolve to stay out of that religion has also strengthened. I have also come to realize that my depression, anxiety, and many other emotional scars inflicted by the organization and those in the ‘truth’ will take time to heal. But your website has also come to help me ... Thank you.”
Just as I was about to enter the Jehovah’s Witnesses again, God led me to your website.
“Hi…I am an Ex-Jehovah’s Witness from South Africa. ...I left the Jehovah’s Witnesses not because I did not agree with their beliefs, but because my wife could not handle it with me being a Jehovah’s Witness and she not. I became an anti-religious person. Then, just as I was about to enter the Jehovah’s Witnesses again, God led me to your website… Today, I prayed to Jesus for salvation after I read your article on your website…”
I’m so glad that I have run across this site.
“After reading the article that David Reed wrote on your site, I’ve looked at things in ‘a new light’ so-to-speak. ...I’m so glad that I have run across this site. I’m sure that it was the Holy Spirit that directed me to all of you!”
Your website is a great source for truth
“Your website is a great source for those seriously seeking the truth.… The Jehovah’s Witness elders shun me. I’ve known these guys for 30 years... Well, when I walk into the Hall they turn their backs to me. I have not seen my Jehovah’s Witness ex-wife, or daughter for two years. ...They hide my family from me. When I go to their homes, they smile with arms folded and say nothing.
The stories I read at your website were loud and clear - conditional love by the ‘brothers’! I have learned more in the Christian Church about unconditional love than 30 years as a Witness. When I accepted Christ, who He really is, the Holy Spirit opened my eyes to see both sides clearly. ...Without the Holy Spirit it is impossible to know the real TRUTH! Keep up your good work.”