Tim Barnett wrote this month’s Solid Ground to help you prepare for conversations with Jehovah’s Witnesses. He says the best thing you can do is to focus on the most important question:
A host of issues can get you sidetracked with Jehovah’s Witnesses if you’re not careful—soul sleep, celebrating birthdays or Christmas, blood transfusions, Heaven, Hell, war, even the Holy Spirit. Don’t go there. None of these are the most important issue. The goal of your conversation is to answer only one question: Who is Jesus? How you answer this question changes everything.
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that the archangel Michael was the very first being in the universe created by Jehovah-God. Michael was then used by God to create the rest of the universe. Later, at the appointed time, Michael was born to the virgin Mary as a human being, thus ceasing to be an angel. Then after His spiritual resurrection, Jesus resumes His identity as Michael. That is the Jehovah’s Witness answer to the question, “Who is Jesus?” Jesus, is the archangel Michael incarnate….
The salvation of anyone, including Jehovah’s Witnesses, depends on an accurate understanding of and belief in God the Son. Jesus said, “I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am He you will die in your sins” (Jn. 8:24). Here Jesus is claiming to be the “I AM” recorded in Isa. 43. The irony is that Isa. 43 is the chapter where Jehovah’s Witnesses derive their name. Isaiah writes, “You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “and my servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe me and understand that I am He” (Isa. 43:10).
Jehovah says His true witnesses will believe of Him that “I am He.” Yet, Jesus says true believers must believe of Him that “I am He.” In fact, this claim, coupled with Jn. 8:58 (“…before Abraham was, I am”), was the reason the Jews tried to stone Jesus (Jn. 8:59). His point was clear: Rejecting Jesus’ deity is rejecting salvation itself. That’s why our question, “Who is Jesus?” is the only question we should focus on.
Tim goes on to explain how a simple comparison between Psalm 102 and Hebrews 1 can help you demonstrate to your Jehovah’s Witness friend that Jesus is Jehovah. Read the rest of this month’s Solid Ground here.