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September - The Watchtower Study Edition


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It looks to me like it doesn't really change much (about the beards). 

It says in some areas it's ok, in other areas it isn't. Who decides whether it's ok or not? The local elders? Circuit Overseer?

And I guess it's a personal decision anyway, but you won't be appointed if the local elders and CO don't agree with the beard.

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1 hour ago, blue-jay said:

It looks to me like it doesn't really change much (about the beards). 

It says in some areas it's ok, in other areas it isn't. Who decides whether it's ok or not? The local elders? Circuit Overseer?

And I guess it's a personal decision anyway, but you won't be appointed if the local elders and CO don't agree with the beard.

I agree to a point. Can you tell me when the last time beards were a topic in the Watchtower?

This is a big thing.

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There is no effective change in this article. If beards are ok in your area, right. If not, it would be better not to wear them. That's logical and sound, and it's what the brothers have been saying for decades every time somebody asked. It's still up to bodies of elders to decide whether a brother with a beard is eligible for some privileges or not, so nothing really changes.

 

But at least that paragraph does away with the old stale argument that "beards identify you with leftist political ideologies" which sparked the whole issue with beards in the first place. It doesn't say beards are wrong or that Christians don't wear beards. Since it depends on local custom, in some areas beards are perfectly acceptable, in others they aren't.

 

Besides, that comment in the article might make some bodies of elders to honestly consider if beards are really a problem in their area or if their rejection is just a baseless JW tradition.


Edited by carlos
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1 hour ago, Jonathan77 said:

I think that this is saying that it is not up to the local body of elders to decide.  It is whether beards are acceptable in your locality or culture.  Who decides that?

Notice the wording in the article: "In other cultures or localities, beards are not the custom and are not considered acceptable for Christian ministers. In fact, having one may hinder a brother from bringing glory to God by his dress and grooming and his being irreprehensible.—Rom. 15:1-3; 1 Tim. 3:2, 7. "

 

In what context do we use the term "irreprehensible"? When we are talking about the requirements to be appointed in the congregation (hence the reference to 1 Timothy 3:2,7). Who decides whether a brother is irreprehensible or not? The body of elders and the CO. So it's up to them actually. And that's logical, because they know the local customs and at the same time are mature Christians.

 

Of course, having a beard or not is a personal choice. Nobody can tell you not to. But if the body of elders feels that it's not the custom of the place, brothers with beards will not be accepted for some responsibilities, exactly as it was until now.


Edited by carlos
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There are beards and there are beards.

 

I talked about this recently with one of our elders in an informal setting, and his main concern was with the attitude of the brother with the beard. Often it is a symptom of an attitude problem, and very interestingly, seems only to be an issue with younger brothers in the congregation.

We have a young brother who has a beard like a pencil-thin line from sideburn to chin and then around the mouth.  I Do not think that that is considered customary in our area.  A fuller beard of similar pattern may be more so.  The difficulty then becomes one of where do you draw the line?  2cm thick line? 3cm?

This particular brother is not handling any responsibilities in the congregation.  The elders told me that he explains to them that they cannot be used in the congregation unless they shave - then it is up to them to decide.

 

The strange thing to me is that brothers with beards can get baptized, go in the ministry (a very clear identification of one as a Christian minister),and  be on the platform in the CLM meeting.  Only when it comes to additional privileges does it become an issue.

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1 hour ago, bohemian said:

There are beards and there are beards.

 

I talked about this recently with one of our elders in an informal setting, and his main concern was with the attitude of the brother with the beard. Often it is a symptom of an attitude problem, and very interestingly, seems only to be an issue with younger brothers in the congregation.

We have a young brother who has a beard like a pencil-thin line from sideburn to chin and then around the mouth.  I Do not think that that is considered customary in our area.  A fuller beard of similar pattern may be more so.  The difficulty then becomes one of where do you draw the line?  2cm thick line? 3cm?

 

Isn’t it the same for everything? How long should the hair be or how short should the skirt be so that it becomes unacceptable?

In some areas around my KH skirts slightly above the knee, just along the end of the knee, are acceptable, but in my congregation the knee must be fully covered…..

The answer is in the text of 1Pe 3:3-4

 

Quote

3 Do not let your adornment be external—the braiding of hair and the wearing of gold ornaments or fine clothing—

4 but let it be the secret person of the heart in the incorruptible adornment of the quiet and mild spirit, which is of great value in the eyes of God.

 

 

If you exterior calls for attention then something is wrong, but if rather you go by discretely and is your inner self that calls attention than everything is OK

As simple as that! J

Now, you easily understand that what calls attention in one place doesn’t in the other… the local context is a key word , it’s all relative


Edited by jayrtom
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2 hours ago, Dustparticle said:

All

 

 Forget the the dress and grooming! I am beyond that. Look at the picture on page 8. Jacob is putting up a good grapple with the angel. I wonder what was  the angels thinking about this while this was going on. I bet there was a lot of laughing going in the heavens,

Think they were laying bets? :D

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On ‎5‎/‎27‎/‎2016 at 7:55 PM, Dustparticle said:

All

 

 Forget the the dress and grooming! I am beyond that. Look at the picture on page 8. Jacob is putting up a good grapple with the angel. I wonder what was  the angels thinking about this while this was going on. I bet there was a lot of laughing going in the heavens,

Could you see that angel's face? No?! That was because he was over Jacob's other shoulder laughing and didn't want to be in picture :D

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On 5/26/2016 at 7:17 PM, blue-jay said:

It looks to me like it doesn't really change much (about the beards). 

It says in some areas it's ok, in other areas it isn't. Who decides whether it's ok or not? The local elders? Circuit Overseer?

And I guess it's a personal decision anyway, but you won't be appointed if the local elders and CO don't agree with the beard.

I wonder if there is a good enough sense of humor that if I shaved my Marlboro Man style mustache again (I was once told by a Circuit Overseer to cut it very short. And I did for a while) if a shaved just the left or right side only?  :D

I have worn a mustache since I was old enough to shave, and for over a decade I wore a close trimmed full beard from October through March every year. Much warmer when having to be out in the winters of the northwestern High Plains where I lived and worked then.

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