Christians may find it difficult to testify of the truth to members of the cult which calls themselves “Jehovah’s Witnesses.” The cult has its own “translation” of the Bible which changes important verses to support their false teaching. These posts give verses we can use which, even in the “Jehovah’s Witness” translation, show the errors of the cult.
The cult teaches rightly that God’s name is Jehovah, but wrongly that Jesus is not Jehovah, not God. Thus, they do not witness to the true Jehovah, the great Three-in-One described in Scripture, but rather to a Jehovah constructed from a misunderstanding of the Bible and from their own thinking. Their New World “Translation” changes key verses showing Jesus is Jehovah, one with the Father.
In part one we looked at the dishonesty of this mistranslation and the difficulty of trying to speak about the Lord to someone in this cult because of it. But we also saw that even their “version” shows Jesus as THE one true Shepherd, the owner of the sheep — and also shows Jehovah as the true Shepherd, thus demonstrating that Jesus is Jehovah.
In part two we looked at Psalm 110 in the New World “Translation,” which says that Jesus, on the throne with the Father, is “at the right hand” but in verse five names the One at the right hand as Jehovah. Thus, Jesus is clearly named as Jehovah, just as the Father is.
How Many Names?
Matthew 28:19 (New World “Translation”)
Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit,
This is quite simple. This instruction to baptise is accurately translated by the “Jehovah’s Witnesses” (though they wrongly dishonour the Holy Spirit by using lower-case).
The verse does not say to baptise in the “names” but the “Name.” It directly links that Name to each of three Beings with the words “of the.” “Of the Son” and “of the Holy Spirit” can refer only to that same “Name.” Jesus could have said “names” but He didn’t — “name” is singular, which tells us the Three all have the same Name.
Any “Jehovah’s Witness” can tell you — the Father’s Name is Jehovah, and Jesus makes clear that His Name is also Jehovah (as is the Spirit’s). When born, He was given another Name, Jesus (as Saviour), and He was also called Lord, Christ, and Immanuel. But His name before birth, through all eternity, always was and remains Jehovah.
Side note: The reference to only one name in this passage helps explain why there is no contradiction with Acts 2:38 and 19:5, where baptism is in the name of Jesus. When we baptise in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost (or Holy Spirit) we baptise in a single name. To baptise in the name of the Three is to baptise in the name of One of the Three, as well. Thus there is no contradiction between a passage that says to baptise in the name of all Three and a passage that says to baptise in the name of One of the Three.
The “Jehovah’s Witnesses” have no explanation for the difference between Matthew and Acts, but the fact that Father, Son, and Spirit are One and bear the same Name removes any confusion.
Question for “Jehovah’s Witnesses”: Were you baptised in one name, or in three names? Why does your own translation say that the Name of the Father is also the Name of the Son and the Holy Spirit?
I’ll have one more post on this, but I want to mention an article refuting “Jehovah’s Witness” errors by Glenn Chatfield. Those who deny the doctrine which has come to be known as “The Trinity” will dispute parts of his post, but the volume of evidence is overwhelming. His post also refers to Matthew 28:19.
I won’t do many series like this on cults. Sites like Glenn’s are very useful for this. If I need to research a group that teaches serious error, Glenn often has them on his side bar with at least some information. He seems careful to get it right — whether one agrees with his assessments or not, his facts are generally accurate. A site called “The Watchman’s Bagpipes” can’t be all bad, can it? 🙂 Especially since you don’t actually have to hear them! (Just joking, pipe lovers!)
Next: Jesus is Jehovah Creator