Release From "Babylonish Captivity" in 1919?
So, I'm going to go back the most basic of basics, the claims made for the "faithful and discreet slave" authority by the Watchtower Society. If those claims can be disproved, the whole basis for Divine authority claimed by the Watchtower Society falls like a house of cards. I think they can be disproved with the simplest of evidence and the simplest of questions.
Every dub worth his/her publisher's record card knows that the Society teaches that the Watchtower Society went into "Babylonish captivity" between 1914-1918:
Of course no "modern historical evidence" is ever offered by the Watchtower Society.
After this period of "Babylonish captivity," Jehovah released them:
Were they "cleansed?" We shall see.
Also during this period, there was an "evil slave class" who was revealed by the Watchtower Society:
What did this "evil slave class" do? For one, they tried to stop Judge Rutherford from illegally seizing control of the society following C. T. Russell's death. For another, they tried to prevent the release of a book Rutherford had secretly printed with the Society's money and was about to issue without obtaining the permission of the directors as required by the Watchtower charter. What book was that? It was the wackiest, goofiest book ever produced by the Society, and would prove deeply embarrassing to them in later years. The book was, of course, The Finished Mystery. For another, many of them left the Watchtower Society because they realized the Society had falsely prophesied about what was going to happen in 1914. So here is a summary of their "sins" once again:
In short, this "evil slave" class tried to obey "Caesar's" laws as well as God's laws regarding false prophets.
Now, let's go back to this "cleansed" condition the "faithful and discreet slave" entered into in 1919. What had changed about them? What, exactly was it that was cleansed? Nothing! Absolutely nothing! They still used the cross, they still celebrated holidays, including Christmas. They still distributed The Finished Mystery. They still believed Russell was the "faithful and discreet slave", and that no one could come to Bible truth without using his writings.
No, the fact is this "Babylonish captivity" was nothing more than the jailing of Rutherford and his associates for distributing The Finished Mystery which encouraged sedition against the governments and vilified other religions in the most revolting manner.
As a result of this "cleansing" did the Watchtower Society stand fast to its beliefs and principles? No! The United States government ordered that they cut out a number of pages from The Finished Mystery and they meekly did so. Why would God in this "cleansing" still allow something to be written and printed in which none of it is even believed nor taught today?
The man "chosen" by God to lead this group of believers in this "cleansed" position was none other than Rutherford himself. He was without any shadow of a doubt the most corrupt, hypocritical, lying, vindictive man ever to lead the Watchtower Society. He had mansions, apartments, Cadillacs, cases of illegal liquor and never went in field service. He wrote books which to this day are a shameful disgrace to the Watchtower Society. He was a slanderer, and even published a Biblical "prophecy" in the Watchtower magazine which he personally applied to one of his personal enemies. He was sued for slander and had to settle out-of-court or face even more public humiliation. He applied the "7 trumpets" prophecy in Revelation directly to a series of puny little Watchtower assemblies in the 1920's. He said "Millions Now Living Will Never Die". He said the "superior authorities" [mentioned in Romans chapter 13] were Jehovah and Jesus, which gave him an excuse to smuggle liquor from Canada to the United States during prohibition. He said the earthly resurrection of the "ancient worthies" in 1925 was even more of a certainty than the flood of Noah's day. He abused, debased and publicly humiliated the humans he kept at Bethel who slaved for the benefit of his personal empire. He would not show Watchtower Society's financial records to anyone, including the directors of the society.
The Watchtower Society is today what it is directly as a result of things Rutherford started: the top-down "Theocracy", the 1914-1918 and 1919 beliefs (this is the cornerstone belief of the Watchtower Society, by the way), the hate of all other religious beliefs, Watchtower Society paranoia, hate of governments, the idea of "organization", the spurning of college educations, and greatly expanded disfellowshipping policies to name just a few.
There was no "Babylonish captivity" and no "release" from said captivity. Rutherford made it all up. Out of thin air. Furthermore, no reasonable person could believe God would wait 1900 years and then end up choosing a man as evil and corrupt as Rutherford to lead his "restored" church.