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Beyond the Watchtower

Looking to our Past for lessons to help inform our Future

Our new logo of the original Watchtower cross and crown supports our subtitle “Looking to our Past – For lessons about our Future.  Find more out the Watchtower history of the cross and crown by clicking here:

WHY THE NAME CHANGE FROM “FRIENDS OF JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES” TO “BEYOND THE WATCHTOWER?” New redirected website address is  —  BeyondWatchtower.com.

First an introduction: We are Bible Students who since the early Watchtower days have continued to meet together in congregations around the world.  We retain, continue to study, and offer to others, the original Watchtower writings and literature, which we enjoy as wonderful resources to help understand and harmonize the Bible’s teachings.  Some of us created the “Friends of Jehovah’s Witnesses” website in an attempt to reach out in the spirit of Christian love and friendship, both to struggling Jehovah’s Witnesses and to Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Why are we reaching out?

A. We hope to provide a safe haven website of help, support, encouragement, open conversation and as well an information center.

B.  We hope to provide for your consideration, the enduring, valued, spiritual light of truth that shone forth so brightly in the early days of the Watchtower ministry.  In the spirit of Christian love and liberty, we extend to you this invitation to study, not with an autocratic ORGANIZATION controlled by a “Governing Body,” but rather with fellow Christian students of the Bible in the spirit of the Berean’s (Acts 17:11).

C. We hope to share with you areas of our common roots and the true history and the original mission of the early Watchtower Society. In its early days, it operated as a publishing house.  It had absolutely NO authority over any of the hundreds of independent congregations which were controlled solely by the congregation members themselves; not by domineering elders, overbearing overseers or a dictatorial Governing Body.  In those days each elder could only remain in office if at the annual elections they received 75% of the vote from the Holy Spirit anointed congregation members voting based on the Biblical qualifications for elder (1 Tim 3 and Titus 1).

So why the name change to “Beyond the Watchtower.”

Some visitors to our site have had the mistaken impression that by calling ourselves “Friends of Jehovah’s Witnesses” that this meant we were in agreement with the new doctrines and the oppressive and controlling spirit of the organization itself and its governing structure as well as its historical practice of shunning questioning members, and the resultant dividing of families. Dear brothers and sisters, nothing could be further from our true heart’s desire. These types of practices were never to be found among the original Watchtower friends prior to 1917.

Our new name “Beyond the Watchtower” contains a dual meaning which helps clarify our mission:

1: To help, support and encourage present JWs looking BEYOND todays Watchtower or else former JWs AFTER leaving the JW Organization. We would like to provide the type of support as shared in A & B above, to help those presently questioning or struggling with their relationship in the J.W. Organization and who may even have endured and suffered from spiritual and emotional wounds.

2: As described in C above, to provide an accurate historical account of events that took place BEYOND or AFTER the early Watchtower” days when a new organization emerged under new leadership, dramatically changing its beliefs and practices.

In these early Watchtower days, many of the original Bible Students refused to accept the new and changed teachings.  Nor would they be controlled by and surrender their Christian liberty to this new and very tough leader, Joseph Rutherford.  These Bible Students broke away from the new and emerging JW organization and either maintained or reestablished Bible Student congregation’s worldwide.  By 1931, 75% of the Original Bible Students had left this new organization which in that year adopted the name “Jehovah’s Witnesses” in order to draw a clear line of distinction from those who had left the Society and those who remained.

The Bible Students as a Christian fellowship still meet together to the present day as free and independent congregations retaining their original beliefs and practicing the same spirit of Christian liberty as was adhered to during the early Watchtower days up through October of 1916 when Brother Russell died.

With these true, loving and encouraging wishes for you, we hope that this website aids you, our visiting brothers and sisters, to find satisfying answers to questions you may have. We hope this site can be an educational, healing center, a safe harbor for achieving a healthy emotional state, a place for spiritual growth in a manner that faithfully follows the scriptures and a place where all of our combined efforts will be found pleasing and honoring to the name of Jehovah, our loving and merciful Heavenly Father.

We hope that a journey with you to the not so distant past will bring you fresh hopes of Jehovah’s kindness and mercy to us today as well as for the bright and wonderful tomorrow that He has promised for all mankind through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

We continue now with our original WELCOME message below.

1Jo 4:18  There is no fear in love, but perfect love throws fear outside, because fear exercises a restraint.  Indeed, he that is under fear has not been made perfect in love. – NWT


Acts 17:10, 11: Immediately by night the brothers sent both Paul and Silas out to Be-roe’a, and these, upon arriving, went into the synagogue of the Jews.  Now the latter  were more noble-minded than those in Thes-sa-lo-ni’ca, for they received the word with the greatest eagerness of mind, carefully examining the Scriptures daily as to whether these things were so. – NWT

You are anonymous here.  You can speak to other Jehovah’s Witnesses, former Jehovah’s Witnesses, Bible Students and other Christians. When posting your comments, you will be able to use a Pen Name.  Your e-mail address and website info are completely optional. No one can identify you.  No one can report you.  You have a home and quiet place to pray and honestly investigate scriptures.  It is not our purpose to indoctrinate you, but merely to provide you with resources for further study of Jehovah’s word.  You are not alone.  You have friends.

Romans 14:4  Who are you to judge the house servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for Jehovah can make him stand. – NWT

2 Tim 1:7  (Amplified Bible) –  For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but He has given us a spirit of power and of love and of calm {and} well–balanced mind {and} discipline {and} self–control.

Gal 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.   NKJV

Gal 5:13 – For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.  NKJV

2Co 3:17 –  …where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.   NWT

John 8:31, 32 – And so Jesus went on to say to the Jews that had believed him: “If YOU remain in my word, YOU are really my disciples, and YOU will know the truth, and the truth will set YOU free.  NWT

If 1 John 4:8 says “God is love,” then shouldn’t love, not fear, be our motivation to serve Jehovah?  Are you serving Jehovah in a certain way because you are afraid/fearful of being destroyed in Armageddon?

Hebrews 13:6 (Amplified Bible) – So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently and boldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?

486 comments to Welcome

  • Anonymous

    my daughter came home crying with his on her shirt that the teacher had hit her told her to stare at the flag students had been harassing her for two days over the flag issue the judge Rutherford set up this policy now I’m the one with tears on my shirt almost every day cuz I lost my daughter I didn’t need this added mental difficulty to me at that time now that I’ve got straightened out in my mental health is good my daughter has been adopted I go to church sometimes to her church to see her sometimes the adopted parents approved of me going to see my daughter a lot of Life experiences with my daughter I never get to have all because of this flag issue policy and the flag issues that people put so much trust in.

    • Anonymous

      my daughter came home crying with tears on her shirt two days of harassment over the flag issue now I cry everyday because my daughter’s not here I don’t get to enjoyment of seeing my daughter grow up and neither do my parents I wish religion and politics would not have confusion with each other. I would still have my daughter because I got myself mentally taken care of as I was about to do Alta Vista elementary School in Campbell county Virginia ruined my life. I wish I was a homeschool my daughter.

      • Peter K. (admin)

        We pulled our kids out of school many years ago because we objected to their methods, worldly teachings and indoctrination. Home schooling worked great for us, but many people cannot do this if a one parent or both parents working. You do take a financial hit because your taxes are paying for others to go to public school and you have to come up with the funds for supplies and materials for home schooling. With only one parent working it is hard to do this. Prayer to Jehovah for guidance navigating the decisions of life are important, following God brings its trials, but well worth it for the joy, comfort and guidance that the LORD provides through Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

    • Steven A

      On the matter of saluting the flag and reciting an oath of allegiance, it seems to me that Jehovah’s Witnesses are correct in taking this stance. It would be wise for all Christians to reflect on their position in respect to this issue.

      The Supreme Court ruled on 14 June 1943, West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, that the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment protects students from being forced to salute the American flag or say the Pledge of Allegiance in public school.



      Thus, thanks to Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christian school students cannot be compelled to engage in speech that is contrary to their constitutional rights.

      Do you believe it would have been right to say ‘Heil Hitler’ and perform the Nazi salute? What about burning incense to the Caesar?


      I would suggest a couple of Reprints:

      [R5754: page 259]—CHRISTIAN DUTY AND THE WAR

      Also [R5894 : page 142]—SOME FAITHFUL WITNESSES

      ‘He had sworn allegiance to the King of kings, and while he had all respect for those who had sworn to England’s King, he was bound in honor to the Lord.


      The President: “Don’t you think it is quite compatible with the Christian life to defend your country?”

      “I have no country, sir. I gave up my citizenship. While I have always realized the privileges of being born in this country, and have been surprised at the privileges granted by the conscience clause in the Military Act, and had decided to stand to my principles even if that clause had not been added—yet my oath of allegiance is to the King of kings.”‘

      ‘Mr. Flowers: Do you refuse to take the military oath?

      Absolutely. I have taken my oath to the King of kings.

      Rev. Challenor: Many other people have taken an oath to the King of kings.

      Applicant: I hope they will have determination to keep it.’

      [R5928 : page 220]—CONSCIENCE AND THE WAR

      ‘The Bible Students’ claim is that the followers of Jesus have their citizenship in Heaven, and that by giving their obedience to the Heavenly Lord they renounce in a degree their allegiance to earthly kings—governments. It is for this reason that we have long advocated that the fully consecrated abstain from voting on political issues. If they so vote, they are identifying themselves with the earthly kingdoms, and might properly enough be called upon to shoot as they vote—to support the government which they helped to create.’

      ‘Similarly with the oath of allegiance required by those who enter the army—they are required to swear allegiance to the king and obedience to the officers of the king in all things. This oath is not required of aliens, foreigners, and is objected to by Bible Students, not because they are opposed to law and order or unwilling to be regulated by the government under which they live, but because they have already given allegiance to the higher power—the Heavenly Lord. To them His words, His commands, etc., are paramount.’

      ‘Some of those who refused on conscientious grounds were sentenced to prison for two years at hard labor. Others were forced to put on military uniform, and were kicked and bruised by companions in the ranks, either because of their conscientious loyalty to the Word of the great King or because they refused to swear allegiance to the British king and obedience to his officers.’

      The early Bible Students appeared to refrain from swearing oaths of allegiance, and other things. The Pastor himself wondered if he had been correct in some recommendations:

      ‘n SCRIPTURE STUDIES, Vol. VI., we have set forth a suggestion that the followers of Christ seek by every proper means to avoid participation in war. We there suggested the possibility, but that in the event of conscription the Lord’s followers should use all their influence toward obtaining positions in the Hospital Corps or in the Provision Department of the Army, rather than in the actual warfare. We suggested further that if it were impossible to avoid going into the trenches, it would still not be necessary to violate the Divine requirement, “Thou shalt do no murder.”

      We have been wondering since if the course we have suggested is the best one. We wonder if such a course would not mean compromise. We reflect that to become a member of the army and to put on the military uniform implies the duties and obligations of a soldier as recognized and accepted. A protest made to an officer would be insignificant—the public in general would not know of it. Would not the Christian be really out of his place under such conditions?’—[R5754: page 259]

      The position taken by Joseph Rutherford and the Watchtower Society, in light of the foregoing, makes a lot of sense. Their course, I personally believe, was, and is, the correct one (avoiding national anthems, oaths of allegiance, etc.). However, you must be fully persuaded in your own mind.

      • Peter K. (admin)

        Hi Steven – Good research. Thanks for sharing. In any case submission to human authorities (Romans 13) would be beneath the priority of obedience to Jehovah (Acts 5:29).

  • Anonymous

    hi I hope all bible students and all Jehovah’s witnesses are doing well mind and body. Its been a hard life for most of us. This sinful world has not made things easy for us. The kingdom of God do not lose hope that is yours in Jesus Christ a new earth to go along with the new heaven is soon here I will do study on evil slave and what the bible is taking about. Thank you bible student’s for putting up this site. I will get back to you what the bible is talking about evil slave. from my research. looking forward to getting back to you the good hope for the kingdom of God will be here soon.

  • Enrede Hounjac

    We should Love God because he send his son Jesus Christ who Love us enough to die and
    save us from your sinful condition. Fear God because, if we do not keep his commandments therefore making ourselves enemies of God!

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Thanks Enrede. Good thoughts from you. Let me add…
      Proverbs 15:16 (KJV) “Better is little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble therewith.”
      Proverbs 19:23 (KJV) “The fear of the Lord tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil.”
      John.14:15-16 (KJV) “[15] If ye love me, keep my commandments. [21] He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.”

  • Roger Letsom

    Greetings Brothers and Sisters in Christ! I really like the new format! I think you are providing a safe haven for people searching for Bible truth. May Jehovah continue to bless you!

  • Roger

    Greetings Brothers and Sisters in Christ! I am a former Jehovah’s Witness who left
    the organization over twenty years ago. I served as both a “Pioneer” and an Elder.
    I have submitted comments to other disaffected witnesses on another web site
    but never got a reply. I really like the new format! I think you are providing
    a safe haven for people searching for Bible truth. May Jehovah continue to bless you!

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Nice to hear from you Roger. We would love to hear more from you if your would like to share your personal experiences in the JWs or if there are any Bible topics you would like to discuss.

  • Stephanie

    And I am not responding to anyone. I am seeking to speak with someone from this…I really don’t know what to call it. Do I call it a church, ect? And why is there a void when I select contact? So really, then, whom can I actually speak with, either on the phone or in person?

  • DJ

    I left the Bible Students and became one of Jehovah’s Witnesses!! They have the truth!!!

    • Stephanie

      And I am not responding to anyone. I am seeking to speak with someone from this…I really don’t know what to call it. Do I call it a church, ect? And why is there a void when I select contact? So really, then, whom can I actually speak with, either on the phone or in person?
      Or if your not meeting in person than on zoom.

      • Peter K. (admin)

        Hi Stephanie – We are fixing the CONTACT page and it should be working again today. If you would like, I can email you directly, but do not want to intrude on your without your invitation. If you want to talk on the phone we can exchange phone #s via email. Let me know what you would like by replying to this message.

        As in the early days of the Original Watchtower, Bible Students have independent churches with no governing organization. Each church (Greek “ecclesia”) is self governing and elects its own elders by extending the hand in vote, as did the Early Church. We do this annually and the Church members are thereby able to assure the election of humble men, of spiritual minds, not interested in power and/or controlling the lives of others.

        Bible Student Churches often have their own ZOOM meetings and you are welcome to attend. I can give you that information if you want me to contact you. Let me know.

      • Peter K. (admin)

        Thanks for your email and phone #. I did leave you a phone voice message and sent you an email. I hid your last message so you don’t get any false contacts.

    • Peter K. (admin)

      DJ – Tell us your story.

  • Andy

    Are the bible students still functioning and if so any where in Pennsylvania?

  • Raj

    The Greek word Kurios referred in Romans 10:9 is the Greek equivalent to the Hebrew word Yahweh or Jehovah?

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Hi Raj,

      Would you say that in every instance in the New Testament that the Greek word Kurious refers to Yahweh or Jehovah? Are there exceptions like below?

      Luke 16:3 (AV) Then the steward said within himself, What shall I do? for my lord <2962> taketh away from me the stewardship: I cannot dig; to beg I am ashamed.

      There are parables, like the scripture above where there is a lord referred to.

  • good talking to you all i only talk about bible and religion. on this channel. if i go back to kingdom hall i may stop talking on this channel right now i am all alone and a old man. and being shunned is kind of cold to be done that way. i am a one of the anointed. who has sinned . and they want speak to me now. did Russel shun. people.

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