The quotes on the page from Watchtower sources speak for themselves as to how the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses have officially viewed the churches throughout it's history. The earlier quotes are the strongest, and as time goes on the language that they choose is not as direct or as colourful. Even so, the official stance promoted by the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society is still that it alone is God's one true channel of communication and that, at best other churches (often refered to as "Christendom") teach error and are part of Babylon the Great's system of false religion, and at worst they are in league with Satan. In fact, their most recent campaign (as of October 2006) has consisted of pushing thousands of flyers through church goers doors, and the doors of non-church goers alike, proclaiming: 'The End of False Religion is Near!' (Presumably, they were not referring to themselves in this proclamation!). This current leaflet portrays all other religions as hypocritical, immoral, false and about to meet their ultimate end in utter destruction. So, nothing changes too much!
Below are a selection of Watchtower quotes reprasentative of how they have viewed the churches throughout their histroy (earliest first going through to the more recent).
"They [the clergy] have in fact represented the Devil, because it [the Church] is the Devil's organization." (J.F. Rutherford, Life, 1929, p. 292).
"The so called Christian Churches, the systems, have forsaken the Lord and have joined hands with the Devil and now they seek solace at his hand by communing with the evil spirits. These systems are confusing to the people, as their name Babylon indicates." (J.F. Rutherford, Deliverance, 1926, p. 85).
"Such was the state of affairs by the time Constantine the Great laid the foundation of the Catholic church in the fourth century A.D., and down through the centuries since then, Christendom's multitudinous sects and cults have continued to hold sheeplike persons in their parish folds, where they are plundered, exploited, fleeced and devoured for the pleasure and profit of the false shepherds." (The Watchtower, 4/15, 1950, p. 119).
"They are not to assume the attitude or follow the sinful course of Christendom's lucre-loving clergy, who abuse and destroy the "sheep", scatter the flock, and even rob and devour widows' houses to satisfy their lustful and greedy appetites." (The Watchtower, 4/15, 1950, p. 121).
"The peoples of Christendom take the name of God and Christ, and are supposed to be serving Jehovah, freed from the ignorant and contaminating practices of heathendom. But only a glance suffices to show how unChristian is Christendom, how so many of its works are evil in God's sight, how his injunctions have gone unheeded. Even religiously, Christendom has been taken in the snare of modern Baalism." (The Watchtower, 6/1, 1950, pp. 164-5).
"The same Christian congregation today provides right association for people who love righteousness. It is not found in the religions of Christendom, for they have followed the footsteps of Caesar and not the footsteps of Christ. Especially from the time of Constantine, religious Christendom has been the bosom companion of the rulers of this wicked world." (The Watchtower, 7/1, 1961, p. 398).
"To this, the Revelation adds the powerful command: "Get out of her my people." Get out of whom? Out of "Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots and of the disgusting things of the earth" - the world empire of false religion, Catholic, Protestant, and non-Christian, all of which reject Bible truth! (Good News to Make You Happy, 1976, pp. 126-127).
"It is no wonder, therefore, that the outstanding doctrines of the religious sects of Christendom and also her practices are pagan, Babylonish, stemming from ancient Babylon...Spiritually speaking, Christendom is a "harlot," for she has intimate friendship with this wicked world...Can there be any question that Christendom is a part of Babylon the Great, with a church membership that makes her the dominant part of the world empire of false religion? None!" (Man's Salvation Out of World Distress at Hand!, 1975, pp. 235-236).
"Outside the true Christian congregation what alternative organization is there? Only Satan's organization..." (Watchtower, 3/1/1979, p. 24).
"From 1922 onward, hard-hitting Bible truths were published and publicly circulated, exposing Babylonish false religion, particularly Christendom's churches..." (Watchtower, Dec. 1, 1991, p. 14).
"No wonder Christendom will soon come to her end along with the rest of "Babylon the Great," the world empire of false religion! (Revelation 18:1-5) Following the pattern of Micah's time, though, Jehovah will have faithful servants remaining on earth." (The Watchtower, Jehovah's Servants Have True Hope, CD Rom, 8/15, 2003).
"If Christendom's religious prophets were standing in Jehovah's intimate group, in close relationship with him as though a faithful and discreet servant, then they too would be living by God's standards. They too would have been making the peoples of Christendom hear God's own words. Instead, the modern-day false teachers have made their followers blinded servants of God's Adversary, Satan the Devil." (The Watchtower, WT CD Rom, 1994, 3/11994, Jehovah's Judgment Against False Teachers)
Watchtower Claim Jehovah's Witnesses are the Only True Christians
"So where is true religion to be found? In all humility and honesty, we must say that Jehovah's Witnesses form an international community walking along this 'narrow and cramped road.' (Watchtower, Dec. 1, 1991, p. 8).
"Yes! genuine Christians are now being gathered into a united brotherhood earth wide. Who are they? They are the Christian congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses..." (The Watchtower, July 1, 1994, p. 7).
"Consider, too, the fact that Jehovah's organization alone, in all the earth, is directed by God's holy spirit or active force. Only this organization functions for Jehovah's purpose and to his praise." - The Watchtower, 7-1-73, p.402).
"It is only logical that there would be one true religion...We do not hesitate to say that they are Jehovah's Witnesses." (You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth, p.190)
All of this brings us to where we started off in this article, with the latest Watchtower campaign against “False Religion” with their leaflet The End of False Religion is Near! In this leaflet, after criticising the practices and beliefs of other religions, dismissing them as false, immoral, and corrupt, it is asked, in contrast, how are we able to identify the true religion? After listing a number of things which it feels are essential to the only true religion (be loving, moral, trust God’s Word, and be family orientated) it states:
“Does any religion meet these standards?” The answer is given in the affirmative - Jehovah’s Witnesses.
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