November 27, 2008

Jesus and JW Angels

A friend wrote:
I am talking to a JW that tells me that Jesus and the angels (Lucifer) are all called "morning star[s]". Jesus is called the [Bright] morning star in Rev 22 and he is (I think) called "morning star" in Rev 2:28. I have looked on the web, but I can't find a good answer to give him that Jesus isn't an angel even though he is called a morning star too. Can you help me on this?To which I replied:

Dear Friend,Thank you for writing. I can offer some comments that might help you. However, I also must pause to reflect that there is rarely 'a good answer' to give to someone who is committed to a religion. Since Christians and Jehovah's Witnesses both hold to the Bible as their source for religious truth, there are precious few arguments you could present that the JW isn't already prepared for. Given that... onward and upwards.

The references in Rev 2 and 22 could be taken to be a reference to Christ. The JW will be quick to group all the angels in with this and try to draw a strong inference that this indicates Jesus is also an angel. It is common for sound Christian commentators to see a reference to Jesus and to angels in these and other verses. Take note that it does not say in these verses that 'Jesus is an angel' or that 'Jesus is one of many angels'. The JW tries to frame their argument to make it appear to be that clear and strong, but it isn't. This is figurative language so we need to be cautious about pressing figurative descriptions as if they were explicit declarations.Then how do you know that Jesus is not just another one of the angels?

  • John 1:1 affirms that he is God, not merely an angel.
  • John 1:3 affirms that Jesus made everything that has been created, again affirming that he is God and not a creature (angel or otherwise).
  • Colossians 1:16 affirms that Christ created ALL things, visible and invisible, affirming that he is God and not a creature.
  • Hebrews chapter 1 in it's entirety contrasts Christ with the angels profoundly, indicating that he is above them as God.

The strength of these clear and explicit affirmations concerning Jesus is more than enough to destroy all speculation founded upon interpretations of implicit verses that utilize figurative imagery.

I hope this helps answer your question. You can certainly
study up on these verses and prepare yourself to dialog with your Jehovah's Witness friend but do not be surprised if they are able to shrug off these clear statements as if they were less than worthy of consideration. After all, to do so would overturn their commitment to the JW religion. False religion ensnares people in complex ways. There can be components of pride (I know I'm right this time), fear (if I leave, I will lose my family/job/home/etc.), loyalty (they have helped me through so much) and many other factors. Pray for your friend. Only our Triune God can set them free from this blinding spiritual darkness.
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