Debate with a JW

So yesterday I had a debate with a JW when she started to criticize the catholic religion.

I had just returned to the church after I believed there was no God during my teenager years. You know, because as a teenager I had “all the answers to the world”. Now that I have grown up from being so childish, I returned to the church and truley believe in the catholic church.

My co-worker started up after reading an article on the computer at about catholics and other religions preying to objects as wrong.

Part of the article reads:

*"Around the globe, Hindus, Buddhists, Catholics, and members of the Orthodox Church view the use of idols, images, or icons as a vital part of their worship. In parts of Africa, people venerate carvings of wood or stone in which a god or the spirit of a god is thought to dwell.

In contrast, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not use any form of idol or icon in their worship. If you visit the places where they meet, known as Kingdom Halls, you will find neither icons of “saints” nor statues of Jesus or Mary.* Why not? Note what the Bible says on this subject."*

and further reads…

*"After liberating the Israelites from Egypt, Jehovah God gave them clear direction regarding how he wanted to be worshipped. The second of the so-called Ten Commandments says: “You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth underneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them nor be induced to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.”—Exodus 20:4, 5.

At the very time that God was giving these commandments to Moses, the Israelites were making a golden calf, likely in imitation of Egyptian animal worship. They did not call the image by the name of an Egyptian god. Instead, they associated it with the worship of Jehovah. (Exodus 32:5, 6) How did God react? His anger blazed against those who venerated the idol, and Moses destroyed it.—Exodus 32:9, 10, 19, 20."*

I explained the best I could still feeling like a newbie. I said it was not wrong to use an object of resemblance of the lord to prey too. It would be wrong to prey to a totem pole or budah, because that would be a false god.

The part that got me is when she told me the “New World Translation” was the only correct bible, as it uses the word Jehovah as god true name. She said Jehovah was removed from all other bibles, and thus all other bibles are false bibles.

I told her this would have to be untrue, but would do some research. I am stuck, can someone help me on these topics?

thank you!

Here’s a good start for research!. Just remember to keep the discussion in the spirit of Faith and that its not about being right per se, its about discussing truth.


Firstly, welcome home to Holy Mother Church!

Secondly, with which specific topic do you require assistance: the stricture against idolatry, the appeal to the New World Translation as an authority or the use of God’s “true” name?

Thank so much,

I would like assistance on the question of:

“Was the name Jehovah removed from all the bibles as Gods name?” As My Co-worker told me, the NWT put them all back. I do not really believe that Jehovah was removed to that extent, but need clarification on this matter.

Thank you and God Bless!

the NWT put them all back


This is an erroneous premise, and I shall endeavour to supply you with documentation supportive of my assertion.

In the interim, however, I will leave you with this morsel of “food for thought”:

If, as the Watchtower claims, their organization faithfully restored the unwarranted substitutions of the name “Jehovah” with the word “Lord” throughout the Tanakh by later apostate Christian redactors, why then do we find similar “restorations” in New Testament passages that clearly and definitively contain the word “κύριος” (i.e. “Lord”) in the original Greek?


One final word of advice, if I may:

An avid student of Watchtower ideology has already accepted the organization as his sole authority in matters of Theology; in short, he simply will brook no other. For this reason (among others) any attempt to “reason from the Scriptures”, to paraphrase the title of one of the organization’s publications, is typically doomed to failure with the end result being little more than a verbal tennis match of “proof-texting” and “verse-slinging”. The Witnesses are well-schooled in the rapid-fire delivery of specific passages that ostensibly support their unique doctrines, and such a performance can seem daunting to a neophyte Christian. The Heart of The Gospel is infinitely more than a simple matter of “chapter and verse”, however; it is ultimately Jesus Christ Himself. A doorstep evangelist - of any faith - who would proselytize through sophistry, equivocation and astonishing but specious displays of mnemonic wizardry, therefore, is invariably preaching solely to his own ego. In short, do not berate your lack of acumen in such exchanges, but remain always focused on Jesus.

Bear in mind that the Scriptures can, have and continue to be interpreted to both fortune and folly, and only informed exegesis can give one “the big picture” of Salvation History as opposed to the relatively myopic view afforded by The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. Satan himself used Sacred Scripture in an attempt to deceive Our Lord, and Christ often reprimanded the Scribes and Pharisees for possessing an academic command of God’s Word without commensurate spiritual insight.

Finally, do not allow yourself to be complacent and satisfied with merely basic knowledge of your religion. Ours is a reasoned and living faith; understand what you believe and why, and do not hesitate - as St. Luke did - to “investigate everything anew”. Accept your belief not as the spiritual legacy of your parent(s) alone, but realize that an ineffable treasure has been bequeathed you by over two thousand years of Christian forebears. As the aphorism says, we are but [FONT=Arial]“gigantum humeris insidentes”; therefore study and benefit from the wisdom of great theologians, both past and present. Read the works of Justin, Tertullian, Augustine and Ratzinger. Purchase a copy of any of the great books by Dr. Scott Hahn. Heed well the words of [/FONT]St. Paul:

[FONT=Arial]Test everything; retain what is good” (1 Thessalonians [/FONT]5:21)

And rest secure within the Barque of Peter, that mighty vessel against which “the gates of hell will not prevail”.

I hope you are getting the answers you need. These are important issues, and it’s important to know all you can about your own faith.

Having said that, it’s really inappropriate for your coworker to be spending your employer’s time attacking your religion. She should be devoting her attention to her work, and she shouldn’t be distracting your attention from your own work. You might suggest this to her gently. Ecclesiates chapter 3, you know. There’s a time and a place for everything.

Furthermore, her actions may be illegal under state and federal law, however well-meaning she may be. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), forbids workplace discrimination based on (among other things) religion. A hostile environment is sufficient cause to argue discrimination. Later legislation provides that monetary awards may be made to compensate the victims of discrimination.



Thank you for the link, lots of great information!

Wow, I can’t thank you enough for that information! I really really appreciate your great response with the information. I will read it over again, and study some more. I really do feel I am at home. I wanted to do this for myself and my family. I am proud to learning about my faith, Proud to be Catholic!

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