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Dates (Generation)

 

Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that

  • Certain dates have prophetic meaning: two dates particularly have been stressed 1874 (now rejected) and 1914 [1]
  • There have been some wrong expectations. Like Jesus’ first-century disciples, Jehovah’s Witnesses have sometimes looked forward to the fulfillment of prophecy ahead of God’s timetable. [2]
  • The lives of the anointed who were on hand in 1914 overlap with the lives of other anointed ones who will see the start of the great tribulation [3]

Introduction

Before you read the following information, you may wish to consider:

  • An immediate reaction to a list of changing dates predicting ‘end times’ is that “light gets brighter” or “the organisation doesn’t claim to be inspired”. Yes, the Holy Spirit may lead gradually but would he teach a series of errors? See FAQ – “light gets brighter” and “We are not false prophets; we don’t claim to be inspired or infallible”
  • The claim is made that the Bible Students were chosen in 1919 as the ‘Faithful and Discreet Slave’ for their faithfully providing nutritious spiritual food. Do you know exactly what knowledge was dispensed as food at that time? See The Faithful and Discreet Slave Q3
  • Do you find the latest teaching, of an anointed generation of two groups with overlapping lives, tenable? As Watchtower claims that Matthew 24 has a first application in the first century, does it make sense to apply the word ‘generation’ to a ‘double lifetime’ generation between 33 AD and 70 AD? See Scripture explainer – Matt 24:34

What does mainstream Christianity believe?

C H Spurgeon: “Jesus’s disciples put a question to him about restoring the kingdom to Israel (Acts 1:6-8). His reply shows us some things are not for us to know.

  1. it is not proper for us. It is not our work. We are not sent into the world to be prophets but to be witnesses…
  2. it is not profitable for us…. I believe it would be a dangerous gift; we would be tempted to set ourselves up as interpreters of the future.
  3. it is not possible for us. We may study as we will and pray as we please, but the times and the periods are not committed to us… “Now concerning that day and hour no one knows—neither the angels of heaven nor the Son—except the Father alone” (Mt 24:36).
  4. it is not good for us, for it would distract our attention from the great things on which we are to think. It is enough for our minds to dwell on the Cross and the coming glory of our Lord.” (Sermon of October 15, 1893) [4]

Q1 Why should we be wary of religions that stress dates?

Answer: A Christian’s life centres on Christ not on a calendar (1 Cor 2:2). For additional information see ‘Prophecies Timeline’

Jesus clearly warned, “See that you are not led astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he!’ and, ‘The time is at hand!’ Do not go after them. (Luke 21:8, ESV)

Paul added his warning voice: “Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him, we ask you, brothers, not to be quickly shaken in mind or alarmed, either by a spirit or a spoken word, or a letter seeming to be from us, to the effect that the day of the Lord has come.” (2 Thess 2:1-2, ESV) 

Moses warned against those that make predictions in the name of Jehovah that do not come true: “And in case you should say in your heart: “How shall we know the word that Jehovah has not spoken?” When the prophet speaks in the name of Jehovah and the word does not occur or come true, that is the word that Jehovah did not speak…” (Deut 18:20-22, NWT)

(Also, Deut 29:29; 2 Cor 11:13-15; 1 John 4:1)

Q2 What dates have been promoted as having prophetic significance?

Answer: The Watchtower Society has consistently refused to obey Jesus’ counsel at Acts 1:6-7 but has repeatedly promoted numerous dates:

Additional info here, here, and here

BC

607

Destruction of Jerusalem

70-year desolation begins (Jer 25:11)

“Seven times” begin (Dan 4)

537

70-year desolation ends (Jer 25:11)

455

Seventy weeks begin (Dan 9:24-25)

406

Jerusalem rebuilt by (Dan 9:25)

AD

539-1799

1260 days, end of Papal rule (Rev 12:7; Three Worlds p.158)

539-1829

1290 days (Dan 12:11; Watchtower 1914 Nov 1st p.326)

539-1874

1355 days (Dan 12:12)

1799-1914

Last Days of 115 years (The Harp of God p.231)

1840

Sounding of the Seventh Trumpet. (Three Worlds p.27)

1844 

End of 2,300 days, God’s sanctuary cleansed

1873

End of 6,000 years of human history (Proclaimers 631-633)

1874

Start of Christ’s invisible presence as King (Proclaimers 133) [5] 

1874-1914

‘The End’ period or ‘Harvest’ period; Armageddon started.       

1878

Christ’s enthronement as King (Proclaimers 632-633) [6]

Start of the resurrection of the dead saints

Return of God’s favour to the Jews (Millions Now Living [1920] p.28)

1881

Heavenly calling ends (Proclaimers 632); Rapture expected [7]

1910

Another date for the ‘rapture’ [8]

1914

End of “Gentile times” (Luke 21:24) [9]

Armageddon (destruction of all governments and false religion)

End of the preaching (harvest) work    

End of Last days (started in 1799 AD)

End of the 70-year generation from 1844 AD

End of the 40 years from 1874 (corresponding to 30 AD to 70 AD)          

End of 36 ½ years from 1878 (corresponding to 33 AD to 7o AD)

Jesus started ruling in heaven (cf 1878 AD)

Later, ‘last days’ said to start in 1914 as Russell’s assertions failed

1915

End of worldly government and the reestablishment of Palestine [10]

1914-1918

1,260 days (Rev 11:3)

42 months (Rev 11:2; 13:5)

Time, times, and half a time (Dan 7:25; 12:7)

1914-1919

Refining of “sons of Levi” (Mal 3:1-3; Watchtower 2019 Oct 15th)

1918

Destruction of the Churches [11]

Harvest work to end

Heavenly resurrection may begin (Watchtower 2007 Jan 1st)

 “Two witnesses” killed (Rev 11:3,7; Rev Climax 167-168)

1918-1919

Corpses of “two witnesses” on street for 3 1/2 days (Rev 11:3,8-9)

1919    

Babylon the Great falls (Rev 14:8; 18:2)

“Faithful and discreet slave” ‘appointed (Matt 24:45-47)

Joining of two sticks (Ezekiel 37:15-28; Pure Worship p.134)

Remnant figuratively resurrected (Dan 12:2; Rev 11:11)

1920

End for Christendom and all government [12]

1921

Closing of the calling and for the 144,000 to go to heaven [13]

1919-1922

1,260 days (Rev 12:6, 14)

1,290 days (Dan 12:11)

1922-1926

1,335 days (Dan 12:12)

1922-1928

Seven trumpets begin (Rev 8-11; Watchtower 2009 Jan 15th)

1925

Resurrection of “ancient worthies” [14]

Earthly paradise to commence

1931

Calling to heavenly hope ends (Watchtower 2007 May 1st)

1935

Sealing of the anointed [15]

Other sheep of John 10:16 equated with “great crowd” of Rev 7:9-10

Resurrection of anointed begins (Watchtower 2009 Jan 15th)

1938-1944

2,300 evenings and mornings (Dan 8:13-14)

1941

Months left to Armageddon [16]

1943

Date of Christ’s presence finally changed from 1874 to 1914 [17]

1945

Disgusting thing placed (Dan 11:31)

1951

1914 to 1951 parallels period 33 AD to 70 AD [18]

1975

6000th year of human history; start of Christ’s 1000 years? [19]

1980

Jews resurrected? 70 years from Russell’s 1910 lecture to Jews [20]

1986

1986 UNO ‘year of peace’, a precursor of Armageddon [21]

2000

Expectation of the end before the turn of the century [22]

2010

Teaching of generation of two overlapping anointed groups [23]

Q3. What changes have there been to the Generation teaching?

Answer: There have been at least six main changes to the interpretation of Matthew 24:34, “Truly I say to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things happen.”

The context of this scripture in Matthew 24 describes people living around 33 AD who would be alive when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in 70 A.D. It is doubtful that Jesus had in mind a second fulfilment for our time, and completely unsupported to say the generation will last so long it requires an overlap. See Last Days Q2.

The New Testament applies the word generation consistently to evildoers in a negative connotation, yet since 2008 the Watchtower applies this term to the righteous anointed.

Sadly, based on the ever-changing Watchtower interpretations, many have made unalterable life-changing decisions affecting their family relationship (singleness, no children), education (no university education), job prospects (no qualifications, careers) and finance (no high-paying jobs, no overtime, no pension plans).

Here is direction given over 50 years ago in 1969: “If you are a young person, you also need to face the fact that you will never grow old in this present system of things. Why not? Because all the evidence in fulfillment of Bible prophecy indicates that this corrupt system is due to end in a few years. Of the generation that observed the beginning of the “last days” in 1914, Jesus foretold: “This generation will by no means pass away until all these things occur.” (Awake! 1969 May 22nd p.15)

The diagram above from “The Truth That Leads to Eternal Life” page 95 represents the understanding held by the Watchtower for decades.

The succession of changes has kept millions in an unhealthy state of unrelenting high alert for the past 150 years. The ever present imminency of Armageddon, usually to strike within this decade, holds Witnesses in a state of stressful anticipation and fear. When a new understanding of the generation is promoted it invariably leads to greater activity in the preaching work, more pioneering and more baptisms.

The chart below presents the numerous changes over the years.

Also see here,

Generation Teaching from 1997

“Since the Master said, “When ye shall see all these things,” and since “the sign of the Son of Man in heaven,” and the budding fig tree, and the gathering of “the elect” are counted among the signs, it would not be inconsistent to reckon the “generation” from 1878 to 1914– 36 1/2 years — about the average of human life today.” (The Day of Vengeance 1897 ed. p.604)

 Generation Teaching from 1927

“The irresistible conclusion therefore is that Jesus referred to the new creation [the anointed] when he said: “This generation shall not pass until all these things be fulfilled.” This then would be a strong indication that some members of the new creation will be on the earth at the time of Armageddon.” (Watchtower 1927 Feb 15th p.62)

Generation Teaching from 1952

“There are hundreds of millions of persons living now that were living in 1914, and many millions of these persons could yet live a score or more years. Just when the lives of the majority of them will be cut short by Armageddon we cannot say.” (Watchtower 1952 Sep 1st pp.542-543)

Generation Teaching from 1968

“Jesus was obviously speaking about those who were old enough to witness with understanding what took place when the ‘last days’ began. … Even if we presume that youngsters 15 years of age would be perceptive enough to realize the import of what happened in 1914, it would still make the youngest of ‘this generation’ nearly 70 years old today.” (Awake! 1968 Oct 8th p.13)

Generation Teaching from 1980

“As indicated by an article on page 56 of U.S. News & World Report of January 14, 1980, “If you assume that 10 is the age at which an event creates a lasting impression on a person’s memory,” then there are today more than 13 million Americans who have a “recollection of World War I.” And if the wicked system of this world survived until the turn of the century, which is highly improbable in view of world trends and the fulfillment of Bible prophecy, there would still be survivors of the World War I generation. However, the fact that their number is dwindling is one more indication that “the conclusion of the system of things” is moving fast toward its end.” (Watchtower 1980 Oct 15th p.31)

Generation Teaching from 1984

“If Jesus used “generation” in that sense and we apply it to 1914, then the babies of that generation are now 70 years old or older. And others alive in 1914 are in their 80’s or 90’s, a few even having reached a hundred. There are still many millions of that generation alive.” (Watchtower 1984 May 15th p.5)

Generation Teaching from 1995

“Rather than provide a rule for measuring time, the term “generation” as used by Jesus refers principally to contemporary people of a certain historical period, with their identifying characteristics….Therefore, in the final fulfillment of Jesus’ prophecy today, “this generation” apparently refers to the peoples of earth who see the sign of Christ’s presence but fail to mend their ways.” (Watchtower 1995 Nov 1st p.20)

Generation Teaching from 2008

“As a class, these anointed ones make up the modern-day “generation” of contemporaries that will not pass away “until all these things occur.” This suggests that some who are Christ’s anointed brothers will still be alive on earth when the foretold great tribulation begins.” … The time period during which “this generation” lives seems to correspond to the period covered by the first vision in the book of Revelation. (Rev. 1:10–3:22) This feature of the Lord’s day extends from 1914 until the last of the faithful anointed ones dies and is resurrected.” ​(Watchtower 2008 Feb 15th pp.23-24)

Generation Teaching from 2010

“He evidently meant that the lives of the anointed who were on hand when the sign began to become evident in 1914 would overlap with the lives of other anointed ones who would see the start of the great tribulation.” (Watchtower 2010 April 15th p.10)

Q4. Is the change from 2010 of the overlapping generation logical?

Answer: It is neither logical nor scriptural. See additional info here

Only one verse from the Old Testament, Exodus 1:6, is used to support this ambiguous interpretation: “Joseph eventually died, and also all his brothers and all that generation.”

Joseph’s brothers were all born within 40 years of each other but this verse does not include his sons (Gen 50:23; cf Job 42:16) who lived in his lifespan but were not of his generation.

In fact, Watchtower has previously used Joseph’s time in Egypt to show that generations that overlap are different generations. Watchtower 2004 March 15th p.26 says that “the Israelites thereafter spent an equal period of 215 years in Egypt”, a timeframe Watchtower 2004 January 15th p.5 described as “a period of four overlapping generations from the time they entered Egypt ….”

If I refer to “my generation,” I mean the time period of my peers and I, not people born decades after I was born. Grandchildren are not the same generation as their grandparents, hence the term “generation gap” referring to the difference between children and their parents and grandparents.

In the diagram below, three people’s lives overlap, totalling 270 years, but they are not of the same generation. Would you call George and Mary contemporaries?  

After every single person born prior to 1914 has died, that generation no longer exists, regardless that their lives overlapped with people still alive.

Q5. Does Watchtower accept full responsibility and apologise for these life-changing changes in dates?

Answer: No, rather the organisation blames the followers for misconstruing or reading too much into statements in the publications.  

1914

“There is no doubt that many throughout this period were overzealous in their statements as to what could be expected. Some read into the Watch Tower statements that were never intended.” (Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Divine Purpose p.52)

What had Watchtower in fact stated?

“In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the Times of the Gentiles, 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.” (The Time is at Hand [1889] p.99)

1925

“It was stated in the ‘Millions’ book that we might reasonably expect them to return shortly after 1925, but this was merely an expressed opinion; besides it is still shortly after 1925. … Some anticipated that the work would end in 1925, but the Lord did not state so. The difficulty was that the friends inflated their imaginations beyond reason; and that when their imaginations burst asunder, they were inclined to throw away everything.” (Watch Tower 1926 pp.196,232)

What had Watchtower in fact stated?

“The year 1925 is a date definitely and clearly marked in Scriptures, even more clearly than that of 1914″ (Watchtower 1924 Jul 15th p.211)

1975

“If anyone has been disappointed through not following this line of thought, he should now concentrate on adjusting his viewpoint, seeing that it was not the word of God that failed or deceived him and brought disappointment, but that his own understanding was based on wrong premises.” (Watchtower 1976 Jul 15th p.441)

What had Watchtower in fact stated?

“Just think, brothers, there are only about ninety months left before 6,000 years of man’s existence on earth is completed. Do you remember what we learned at the assemblies last summer? The majority of people living today will probably be alive when Armageddon breaks out, and there are no resurrection hopes for those that are destroyed then.” (Kingdom Ministry 1968 Mar p.4)

The Governing body demand absolute allegiance to their interpretation as spirit directed truth, then allowing an escape route by claiming they are not inspired.

“The Governing Body is neither inspired nor infallible. Therefore, it can err in doctrinal matters or in organizational direction.” (Watchtower 2017 Feb p.26)

Summary

  • It is deliberate disobedience to Christ’s words at Acts 1:7 to suggest prophetic times or seasons. Here is the Amplified Classic Edition: “He said to them, It is not for you to become acquainted with and know what time brings [the things and events of time and their definite periods] or fixed years and seasons (their critical niche in time), which the Father has appointed (fixed and reserved) by His own choice and authority and personal power.”
  • The problem is that these predictions were more than just “expectations”. People sold their belongings and gave them to the “Society”. There have been numerous predictions about the end by JW’s, including 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, 1941 and 1975. The reality is that Christians don’t need a date to prompt them to alter their lives – love of Christ will motivate them.
  • Much research, prayer and courage is needed to withstand the pressure to conform to programmed mind control. Listen to Jesus, “He said, “Watch out for the doomsday deceivers. Many leaders are going to show up with forged identities claiming, ‘I’m the One,’ or, ‘The end is near.’ Don’t fall for any of that.” (Luke 21:8, Message Bible)

Endnotes

[1] Studies in the Scriptures Series III – Thy Kingdom Come p.121

[2] Watchtower 2013 Jan 1st pp.4-8

[3] Watchtower 2010 April 15th p.10

[4] C H Spurgeon was a contemporary of C T Russell but faithfully followed Jesus’ counsel at Acts 1:6-8

https://ccel.org/ccel/spurgeon/sermons39.xlii.html

[5] In Russell’s chronology the most important dates were 1874 and 1914.

In 1876, Russell became interested in time prophecy, after reading a copy of Barbour’s publication Herald of the Morning. Barbour explained that Matthew 24:27 meant Jesus’ invisible presence commenced in 1874, the rapture would be 1878, and the end of the world was to occur in 1914. (Watchtower, 1906 July 15th)

“Evidence of the Lord’s presence commencing in 1874 included – adding machines, aeroplanes, aluminium, antiseptic surgery, artificial dyes, automatic couplers, automobiles, barbed wire, bicycles, carborundum, cash registers, celluloid, correspondence schools, cream separators, fireless cookers, shoe-sewing machines, the telegraph, the telephone, Panama Canal, Pasteurization, and vacuum cleaners.” These physical facts cannot be disputed and are sufficient to convince any reasonable mind that we have been in “the time of the end” since 1799.” (The Harp of God p.234-5)

By 1880 all the signs of the end were said to have started, great earthquakes, war, pestilence, bad behaviour of people and so forth. Ironically, the exact opposite is now stated, that the time before 1914 was a period of peace! Prominent world leaders were quoted saying that just before 1914 conditions promising world peace were never more favourable. Yet “the terrible troubles the Bible foretold began right on time, in 1914!” (You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth p.5)

As late as 1930, the Watchtower was still referring to 1874 as the start of Jesus presence. “… from the beginning of the Lord’s presence in 1874 the Devil used the Papal system as the chief opposing instrument of God’s kingdom …” (Watchtower 1930 Sep 15th p.275)

“The Scriptural proof is that the second presence of the Lord Jesus Christ began in 1874 A.D” (Prophecy 1929 p.65). 1874 was not removed entirely from Watchtower doctrine until 1943.

[6] On the basis that 1878 was 3 ½ years after 1874, a period paralleling Jesus’ 3 ½ year earthly ministry it was claimed that 1878 was the year Jesus would take rulership in heaven, the start of the heavenly resurrection, and the rapture.

“1874 as the time of our Lord’s second presence as Bridegroom and Reaper, and to April 1878 as the time when he began to exercise his office of King of kings and Lord of lords” (Thy Kingdom Come p.150)

“1878 … They also thought they would be given their heavenly reward at that time.” (Jehovah’s Witnesses – Proclaimers of God’s Kingdom p.632)

[7] 1881 the sealing of the 144,000 was to be complete. This was to be at the end of 7 harvest years after the jubilee cycles had ended in 1874. In January 1881 the Watchtower stated that “the translation or change from the natural to the spiritual condition, [is] due this side or by the fall of our year 1881.”

[8] “The four years from 1910 to the end of 1914, indicated thus in the Great Pyramid, will doubtless be a time of “fiery trial” upon the Church (1 Cor. 3:15) preceding the anarchy of the world, which cannot last long.” (Thy Kingdom Come p.364)

[9] Watchtower falsely predicted 1914 to be the “end” of the system of things, the conclusion of Armageddon and the start of the earthly paradise.

 “The date of the close of that “battle” is definitely marked in Scripture as October 1914. It is already in progress, its beginning dating from October, 1874.” (Zion’s Watch Tower 1892 Jan 15th p.23)

“But bear in mind that the end of 1914 is not the date for the beginning, but for the end of the time of trouble. (Zion’s Watch Tower 1894 Jul 15th p.226)

“The Day of Vengeance … will end in October, 1914″ (The Day of Vengeance p.547)

“In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the Times of the Gentiles, 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.” (The Time is at Hand [1889] p.99)

https://jwfacts.com/watchtower/failed-1914-predictions.php

Jesus earthly rulership was expected to follow in 1914. In the 1920’s, after 1914 had failed to deliver upon its expectations, Watchtower shifted the start of Jesus invisible heavenly rulership from 1878 to 1914.

[10] “In view of this strong Bible evidence concerning the Times of the Gentiles, 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 near the end of A.D. 1915. (The Time is at Hand 1915 ed. pp.99,101,242)

[11] “Also, 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’.” (Finished Mystery p.485)

[12] “Even the republics will disappear in the fall of 1920. The three days in which Pharaoh’s host pursued the Israelites into the wilderness represent the three years from 1917 to 1920 at which time all of Pharaoh’s messengers will be swallowed up in the sea of anarchy.” (Finished Mystery 1918 ed. P.258)

[13] “The Seventh-days before the Deluge may represent seven years, from 1914 to 1921, in the midst of which “week of years’ the last members of the Messiah pass beyond the veil.” (The Finished Mystery p.64)

[14] In February 1918 the title of a public address by Rutherford was “The World Has Ended – Millions Now Living May Never Die!” In March 1918, the title was changed to the more compelling “The World Has Ended — Millions Now Living Will Never Die!  https://jwfacts.com/watchtower/1925.php

It was confidently expected that in 1925 the few thousand Bible Students all die and go to heaven, as either the Little Flock or Great Crowd. At that time, the Great Crowd also had a heavenly hope. The “Millions” that Rutherford was referring to who would never die were the rest of humankind alive at that time.

“Seventy times 50 are 3,500. The whole period would therefore have been 3,500 years from the time the Jews entered Canaan until all the types would have been fulfilled. As they entered Canaan 1,575 years before Christ there would be 1,925 years of types after Christ, or 1925 A. D.” (The Way to Paradise p.223)

“The year 1925 is a date definitely and clearly marked in Scriptures, even more clearly than that of 1914″ (Watchtower 1924 Jul 15 p.211)

After 1925 came and went without incidence Memorial attendance dropped by three-quarters, from 88,544 in 1927 to just 17,380 in 1928. (Watchtower 1955 p.366; Yearbook 1929 p.55) It is estimated that as many as 75% of publishers left the religion.

[15] “Logically, the calling of the little flock would draw to a close when the number was nearing completion, and the evidence is that the general gathering of these specially blessed ones ended in 1935.” (Watchtower 1995 Feb 15 p.19)

Russell originally set the date for the sealing of the 144,000 as being 1878. This was moved to 1881, 1910, 1914, 1925, 1931 and finally 1935. In 2007 it has admitted as unknown.

[16] “…The Lord’s provided instrument for most effective work in the remaining months before Armageddon.” (Watchtower 1941 Sep 15th p.288)

[17] Many of these failed prophetic dates have long since been abandoned but it was not until 1943 (in the book “The Truth Shall Make You Free”) that the beginning of Christ’s presence was specifically changed from the year 1874 to 1914.

[18] Watchtower 1950 Nov 1st pp.407-408

[19] “The immediate future is certain to be filled with climactic events, for this old system is nearing its complete end. Within a few years at most the final parts of Bible prophecy relative to these “last days” will undergo fulfilment.” (Watchtower 1968 May 1st p.272)

The Watchtower did not change their workings on the 6,000 years until 1943, when they started to say that the 6,000 years actually ended in 1975. (Proclaimers footnote p.133)

In reference to 1975 – “Just think, brothers, there are only about ninety months left before 6,000 years of man’s existence on earth is completed. Do you remember what we learned at the assemblies last summer? The majority of people living today will probably be alive when Armageddon breaks out, and there are no resurrection hopes for those that are destroyed then.” (Kingdom Ministry 1968 Mar p.4)

In 1980, the Watchtower made a post-1975 admission that it had encouraged the viewpoint that Jesus earthly rulership would begin 1975.

“With the appearance of the book Life Everlasting-in Freedom of the Sons of God, and its comments as to how appropriate it would be for the millennial reign of Christ to parallel the seventh millennium of man’s existence, considerable expectation was aroused regarding the year 1975. … Unfortunately, however, along with such cautionary information, there were other statements published that implied that such realization of hopes by that year was more of a probability than a mere possibility.” (Watchtower 1980 Mar 15th p.17)

https://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/1975.php

Think about these two points: The angels were observing as the day of creation ended and hence would know the day for the start of Armageddon if it was to be a simple 6000 year calculation yet the Bible states the angels did not know the time for the end. Matthew 24:36 “Concerning that day and hour nobody knows, neither the angels of the heavens nor the Son, but only the Father.”

The Bible does not specify the length of the creative days or the seventh day. It does not indicate that God’s day of rest is 7,000 years, or that Jesus reign is to start after 6,000 years.

[20] Studies in the Scriptures – The Finished Mystery p.62

[21] True Peace and Security – How Can You Find It? [1986] p.85

[22] “He was laying a foundation for a work that would be completed in our 20th century“. (Watchtower 1989 Jan 1 p.12) But this was changed to “in our day” for the bound volume and subsequent CD library: Compare:

https://www.jwfacts.com/images/watchtower-1989-jan-1-p12-mag.gif

https://www.jwfacts.com/images/watchtower-1989-jan-1-p12-bound.gif

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