Why aren’t Jehovah Witnesses considered a Christian denomination?

BibleAsk Team

The Jehovah Witnesses

The Jehovah Witnesses hold many beliefs that go against what the Bible teaches. But their greatest fallacies have to do with the Godhead, the nature of Christ and the person-hood of the Holy Spirit. The main difference between the Jehovah Witnesses and other Christian denomination is that the Jehovah Witnesses don’t believe in the concept of the Godhead. They believe instead that Jehovah is the supreme being and Jesus is his first created being who existed in a pre-human state as the Archangel Michael. And they teach that the Holy Spirit is merely an energy or force.

But the Bible teaches clearly that there is “One God” (Deuteronomy 6:4), who is revealed in three distinct Persons – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (1 John 5:7). Each person of the Godhead is God (John 1:1; 20:28; 1 John 5:20; Ephesians 4:6; Titus 2:13; Acts 5:3, 4), yet the three are one in nature, character and purpose (Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 12:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14; 1 Peter 1:2).

The Jehovah Witnesses teachings regarding Christ are contrary to the teaching of the New Testament in which Jesus is revealed as the Eternal Creator and not a created being (John 1:1–4). To deny the deity of Christ and the person-hood of the Holy Spirit is to deny the Christian faith.

As we compare Scripture definitions for God with the Bible record of Jesus, we see the characteristics of Jehovah are also ascribed to Jesus. Note the following verses:

  • Jesus is self-existent. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…” (John 1:1–4; 14:6).
  • Jesus is eternal. “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord…” (Revelation 1:8).
  • Jesus has eternal life in Him. “And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son” (1 John 5:11, 12, 20).
  • Jesus is all-powerful. “…who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty” (Revelation 1:8).
  • Jesus is omnipresent (through the Spirit). “Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20; Acts 18:10 ).
  • Jesus created all things. “All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made” (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16).
  • Jesus has power to give life, and even resurrected Himself. “No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again” (John 10:18; John 11:25).
  • Jesus accepted worship that according to the Ten Commandments is reserved only for the Almighty. “Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God” (Matthew 14:33; Matthew 28:9; John 20:26–29).
  • Jesus forgives sin. “When He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” (Luke 5:20, 21).
  • Jesus is worshiped by angels. “And again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him” (Hebrews 1:6).
  • The Father calls Jesus God. “But unto the Son, he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom” (Hebrews 1:8).

Therefore, by considering the primary definitions of God, and seeing that Jesus fits every one of those definitions,  we can conclude that Jesus is indeed the eternal God.

Also, the scriptures teach that the Holy Spirit is the third divine person of the Godhead. Though a spirit, He has all the characteristics of a separate person. Jesus promised before His ascension that He was sending another helper; “paraclete” is the Greek word that signifies a multi-sided personal ministry.

The Holy Spirit speaks (Acts 8:29), teaches (2 Peter 1:21), guides (John 16:13 NKJV), witnesses (Hebrews 10:15), comforts (John 14:16), helps (John 16:7, 8), and can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30). These are all traits that usually belong to a person and not just a force.

The Jehovah Witnesses have re-translated the Bible into the “New World Translation” to support their false teachings. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society altered the text of the Bible to make it fit their false doctrine. They base their beliefs and doctrines on the original teachings of Charles Taze Russell, Judge Joseph Franklin Rutherford, and their successors and not on the Word of God. But Jesus says, “But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9).

In summary: The Bible states that those who followed Jesus were first called Christians in Antioch (Acts 11:26). The Jehovah Witnesses can’t be called Christians (Acts 11:26) because they don’t believe in the scriptural teaching that Christ is God the Son but rather teach that He is only a created being.

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In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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