The Watchtower Society, also known as the Jehovah’s Witnesses, have predicted the end of the world no less than five times. According to their founder Charles Taze Russell, their second President J.E. Rutherford, and their official magazines The Watchtower and Awake!, the world was to end in 1914. But 1914 came and went without the world ending. So the date changed to 1915. But 1915 came and went without the world ending. So the date changed to 1918. But 1918 came and went without the world ending. So the date changed to 1925. But 1925 came and went without the world ending. So the date changed to 1975. But 1975 came and went without the world ending. So they stopped making public predictions about the end of the world and purged members (nearly 30,000 in 1978 alone) who questioned these false prophecies. Making failed predictions is a sure way to look stupid, but looking stupid isn’t so bad. Where the Watchtower Society really stands out is denying medical care for their children, based on fickle revelations from God to their leadership. Sometimes they ban medical procedures such as blood transfusions or organ transplants, sometimes they do not ban them – too bad if your child died while the ban was in effect. Maybe it wasn’t the end of the world, just the end of your child, that the Jehovah’s Witnesses were able to bring about.
THE WORLD WILL END IN 1914
“And, with the end of A.D. 1914, what God calls Babylon , and what men call Christendom, will have passed away, as is already shown from prophecy.” Charles Taze Russell, Studies In The Scriptures, Vol. III
“…we consider it an established truth that the final end of the kingdoms of this world, and the full establishment of the Kingdom of God, will be accomplished by the end of A.D. 1914″ Charles Taze Russell, The Finished Mystery.
NO, WAIT, THE WORLD WILL END IN 1915
“In the coming 26 years [1889+25], all present governments will be overthrown and dissolved.” Charles Taze Russell, Studies in the Scriptures, Vol. II
“The Gentile Times prove that the present governments must all be overthrown about the close of A.D. 1915.” Charles Taze Russell, The Time Is At Hand.
NO, WAIT, THE WORLD WILL END IN 1918
“… in the year 1918, when God destroys the churches wholesale and the church members by millions, it shall be that any that escape shall come to the works of Pastor Russell to learn the meaning of the downfall of Christianity.” The Finished Mystery (1917 edition).
NO, WAIT, THE WORLD WILL END IN 1925
“… there will be a resurrection of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and other faithful ones of old … we may expect 1925 to witness the return of these faithful men of Israel from the condition of death, being resurrected and fully restored to perfect humanity and made the visible, legal representatives of the new order of things on earth… Therefore we may confidently expect that 1925 will mark the return of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and the faithful prophets of old, particularly those named by the Apostle in Hebrews 11, to the condition of human perfection.” J.E. Rutherford, Millions Now Living Will Never Die.
“Fulfilled prophecy shows beyond a doubt that (Christ) did appear in 1874. Fulfilled prophecy is otherwise designated the physical facts; and these facts are indisputable… We understand that the jubilee type began to count in 1575 B.C.; and the 3,500 year period embracing the type must end in 1925… It follows, then, that the year 1925 will mark the beginning of the restoration of all things lost by Adam’s disobedience.” J.E. Rutherford, The Watchtower, November 1 1922
“Our thought is, that 1925 is definitely settled by the scriptures. As to Noah, the Christian now has much more upon which to base his faith than Noah had upon which to base his faith in a coming deluge.” The Watchtower, April 1 1923
NO, WAIT, THE WORLD WILL END IN 1975
“[...] according to reliable Bible chronology Adam was created in the year 4026 BCE, likely in the autumn of the year, at the end of the sixth day of creation.” [...] “According to reliable Bible chronology, Adam and Eve were created in 4026 BCE.” [...] “Are we to assume from this study that the battle of Armageddon will be all over by the autumn of 1975, and the long-looked-for thousand-year reign of Christ will begin by then? Possibly, but we wait to see how closely the seventh thousand-year period of man’s existence coincides with the sabbathlike thousand-year reign of Christ… Our chronology, however, which is reasonably accurate (but admittedly not infallible), at the best only points to the autumn of 1975 as the end of 6,000 years of man’s existence on earth.” The Watchtower April 1, 1968; Awake! October 8, 1968; The Watchtower August 15, 1968.
BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS FORBIDDEN!
Watchtower September 15 1961 pp. 563-564
Watchtower February 15 1964 pp. 127-8
BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS NOT FORBIDDEN!
Watchtower November 15 1964 pp. 680-3
Watchtower June 15 2000 p. 31
ORGAN TRANSPLANT FORBIDDEN!
Watchtower November 15 1967 pp. 702-4
Awake! June 8 1968 p. 21
ORGAN TRANSPLANT NOT FORBIDDEN!
Watchtower March 15 1980 p. 31
(from OVO 16 ANTICHRIST January 2006)