is God's infallible, inspired Word, upon which Jehovah's Witnesses base
all their beliefs. Some portions of the Bible are to be understood
or symbolically.—2 Timothy 3:16, 17; Revelation 1:1.
is the name of the only true God, the Creator of all things. As such,
is worthy of our worship and devotion. His outstanding qualities are
justice, wisdom, and power.—Psalm 83:18; 1 John 4:8; Revelation 4:11.
is the Son of God. He came to earth from heaven and gave his perfect
life as a ransom sacrifice. His death and resurrection made salvation
eternal life possible for those exercising faith in him. He is now
as King of God's heavenly Kingdom, which will soon bring peace to the
earth. Jesus never claimed equality with God and thus is not part of a
Trinity.—John 3:16; 14:28; Revelation 11:15.
is a result of sin inherited from the first man, Adam, who chose to
God. The original sin was not sex relations but was the deliberate
act of eating of "the tree of the knowledge of good and bad." The dead
are conscious of nothing. In the future, God through Jesus will
the dead.—Genesis 2:17; Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10; John 11:25; Romans 5:12.
worship emphasizes, not ritual and outward show, but spirit and truth.
It is characterized by genuine love for God, obedience to his
and love for one's fellowman. Jehovah's Witnesses do not use religious
symbols, such as the cross, in their worship.—Matthew 22:37-39; John
1 Corinthians 10:14.
is the heavenly Kingdom for which Jesus taught all his followers to
Soon it will become the one government over all the earth and will
mankind's pressing problems. The Bible does not give a date for these
but it provides evidence to show that we are living in "the last days"
of this troubled world.—2 Timothy 3:1-5; Daniel 2:44; Matthew 6:9, 10;
is God's appointed Judge who determines what each one's future will be.
Those judged righteous will be given everlasting life on a paradise
Those judged unrighteous will not be tormented but will die and cease
exist. Humans are not responsible for this judgment, nor will they be
when God takes action to remove all wickedness from the earth.—Proverbs
2:21, 22; John 5:22; Acts 17:30, 31; Revelation 21:3, 4.
earth will never be destroyed or depopulated but will become a peaceful
paradise.—Psalm 37:29; Isaiah 45:18; Luke 23:43.
Witnesses view marriage as a serious, lifelong commitment. They look to
the Bible for guidance in resolving marital problems in a loving and
way. Scripturally, divorce may be obtained on the grounds of marital
Separation is acceptable in extreme situations, such as those involving
willful nonsupport or physical abuse. Whether to separate or not is the
personal decision of the wronged mate.—Matthew 19:6, 9; Ephesians 5:33.
is a matter of personal choice.
are to love their children. They also have the primary responsibility
providing for the physical, emotional, recreational, and spiritual
of their children. Parents should teach their children Scriptural
and provide loving discipline. The Bible does not condone harsh
punishment.—Deuteronomy 6:6, 7; Ephesians 6:4.
mates with different religions are encouraged to treat each other with
tolerance and respect. Children should be given the opportunity to
about the religious views of both parents.—1 Corinthians 7:12-14.
Witnesses believe that it is their Christian responsibility to be model
citizens. For this reason, they honor and respect governmental
Only on those rare occasions when a government demands what is in
conflict with what God commands do Jehovah's Witnesses decline to
Their publications and public ministry encourage everyone to be
22:17-21; Acts 5:29; Romans 13:1-7.
Witnesses are found at all levels of society, and they do not
separate themselves from those who do not share their beliefs. They
work, and go to school with people of different religious beliefs, and
they enjoy cordial relationships with them. Jehovah's Witnesses follow
Jesus' example of being "no part of the world" by avoiding the
prejudices and controversies that divide mankind today. Although not
they avoid being excessive in the pursuit of wealth, pleasure, or
17:15, 16; 1 John 2:15, 16.
the examples set by Jesus and first-century Christians, Jehovah's
do not share in the politics or wars of any nation. Their stand of
neutrality is well documented in history. They firmly believe that they
must "beat their swords into plowshares" and not "learn war anymore."
2:4) At the same time, Jehovah's Witnesses recognize the authority of
to raise armies and defend themselves, and they do not interfere with
others choose to do.—John 18:36.
Witnesses actively seek medical care when needed, and many work in the
health-care field. They accept the vast majority of treatments
begins at conception. Deliberately induced abortion is viewed as the
taking of human life.—Exodus 21:22, 23.
are commanded to "abstain from . . . blood." Since the Bible makes no
statement about the use of minor blood fractions or the immediate
of a patient's own blood during surgery, a medical process known as
salvaging, the use of such treatments is a matter of personal choice.
Witnesses accept reliable nonblood medical alternatives, which are
recognized in the medical field.—Acts 15:19, 20, 28, 29; compare
9:3, 4; Leviticus 17:10-14.
Witnesses do not believe in faith healing as commonly practiced today.
Jesus and his apostles performed miraculous healings, but the Bible
it clear that these were first-century phenomena and not an ongoing
of Christianity.—1 Corinthians 12:30; 13:8.
to an organ transplant or organ donation is a personal decision.
Bible does not require that extraordinary, complicated, or distressing
measures be taken to sustain a person if this would merely prolong the
dying process. Any advance directives by the patient should be
Witnesses have no objection to vaccines in general. Some vaccines
minor blood fractions, and use of these is a matter of personal choice.
act symbolizes one's dedication to God and is taken by those of
age who have made an informed decision. Baptism is by complete water
the model of first-century Christianity, Jehovah's Witnesses have no
division. All baptized members are ordained ministers and share in the
preaching and teaching work. Witnesses are organized into congregations
of up to 200 members. Spiritually mature men in each congregation serve
as elders. A body of elders supervises each congregation. About 20
form a circuit, and about 10 circuits are grouped into a district.
receive periodic visits from traveling elders. Guidance and
are provided by a multinational governing body made up of longtime
who currently serve at the international offices of Jehovah's Witnesses
in Brooklyn, New York.—Acts 15:23-29; 1 Timothy 3:1-7.
Witnesses avoid making rules and regulations beyond those provided in
Scriptures, and they do not follow traditions that contradict Bible
Emphasis is placed on personal application of Bible principles and the
value of a sound, Bible-based conscience.—Matthew 15:9; 2 Corinthians