Jehovah’s Witnesses are a fearful people. They fear the demons. They fear what will happen to them if they ever leave the cult. They fear displeasing Jehovah or, more importantly, the elders. They fear disfellowshipping. And they fear Armageddon.
Armageddon, as defined by JW theology, is God’s day of wrath when he sends his son, Jesus Christ, to destroy the present system of things and all of the wicked people in it. As seen in the above illustration taken from Learn From the Great Teacher, page 243, this day will be filled with violence and death, but those who please Jehovah will be kept safe – maybe.
When I was a JW I used to wince at these lurid pictures and wonder how a loving God could inflict such terror and pain on his human children. JWs don’t believe in hellfire; they say a God of love would not torment humans for eternity. I preferred to picture it as more of an instant death for everyone, all at the same time. No need to terrorize them (really, that’s more serial killer-ish, don’t you think?).
However, in Watchtower publications every illustration of Armageddon involves huge fireballs falling from the sky, crumbling skyscrapers, people screaming in terror and running for their lives. Some of the drawings depict smiling JWs walking away from the burning piles of flesh and concrete, faces raised and arms extended in praise to their God. What a wonderful…..
Wait a ding-danged minute here! These smiling people have just witnessed their God killing millions of children, along with adults (including some of their own relatives), because they were deemed to be wicked. What was the criterion on which this verdict was reached? Whether they had accepted or rejected the message of JWs. How can you smile about that?
Actually, JWs are keenly anticipating the day that you die a horrible death at the hands of a wrathful God. That is the teaching of Armageddon in a nutshell.
Oh, but wait, there’s more. After Armageddon there will be billions of dead bodies lying around which will be eaten by vultures and their ilk. Lovely thought, that. As times goes on, squads will be dispatched to bury the bones.
Meanwhile, the rest of the survivors will have to clean up the mess that God made. Mind you, those fireballs have probably damaged the infrastructure, and the highways will be clogged with abandoned cars, and are there working toilets? And think about this – since all industry has come to an abrupt halt, how will the survivors power the necessary tools, like bulldozers and jackhammers? Is there any chocolate? Really, the issues they will face are very serious.
Ask an active JW about this and they will tell you, “Jehovah will see to it that we have everything we need.” In fact, their focus is on the paradise to come, not practical matters.
To add insult to injury, they may even have picked your house as one they want to own after you’re dead.