KA. I can prove by the BIBLE that any clergy class is UNBIBLICAL, because:
1) We holy ones DIFFER from the NATION OF ISRAEL.
Nation of Israel had a clergy class. They had priests, they had kings, they had judges, they had chieftains, heads of paternal houses, and so forth.
Holy ones do not have a clergy class. We all are Priests, we all are Kings, we all are Judges.
Jesus said in Matt. 20:25-26: “Rulers of the nations exercise lordship over them and the great men exercise authority over them.” Israel was one of such nations, having such rulers. But Jesus said to his disciples: “IT WILL NOT BE LIKE THIS AMONG YOU.”
2) We holy ones are ONE BODY under ONE HEAD.
The Bible says that HOLY ONES form ONE BODY that has ONE HEAD, Jesus.
The Bible says that holy ones are ONE BODY, Christ’s Body, and that this One Body has ONE HEAD governing it, Jesus, so, can something else govern it as ANOTHER HEAD, any governing entity, clergy class, for that is TWO HEADS, or countless Heads? Jesus governing his Body as the Head + some clergy class governing Christ’s Body as the Head = TWO HEADS.
How many HEADS you see in the picture below?
How many HEADS did you see in the picture? I saw ONE HEAD.
Jesus is the HEAD that directs and governs each member in HIS BODY, just like YOUR HEAD directs and governs each member in YOUR BODY.
Your 10 TOES, or your 10 FINGERS, cannot direct and govern other members of YOUR BODY, neither can some members of CHRIST’S BODY direct and govern other members of CHRIST’S BODY, and how much less those outside can direct and govern members of CHRIST’S BODY.
As you read from the Bible, Paul said to HOLY ONES in Corinth:
“Christ… belongs to God”
“You belong to Christ”
“All things belong to you”
This is the principle of HEADSHIP, yes, inspired words about each and every anointed one: “ALL THINGS BELONG TO YOU… the world… life… death… things now here… things to come, ALL THINGS BELONG TO YOU; in turn you belong to Christ; Christ, in turn, belongs to God” (1 Cor. 3:21-23). Each and every holy one is ANOINTED as KING by Jehovah himself, anointed by holy spirit, like Jesus was ANOINTED as KING by Jehovah himself when he was here on Earth, anointed by holy spirit (Lu. 3:22; Acts 2:3; Acts 11:15-16). No human was ruling, or governing, Jesus, the King, and no human must rule, or govern, holy ones, the Kings. We are heirs of ALL things, for Jesus is “heir of ALL things” (Hebr. 1:2), and we are joint heirs with him (Rom. 8:17).
3) We holy ones are WIFE under ONE HUSBAND.
Which picture above represents YOUR OWN MARRIAGE, picture 1 or picture 2, and thus helps you to understand picture 3 which is CHRIST’S MARRIAGE?
Is the congregation of holy ones to be under ONE HUSBAND or under MANY HUSBANDS? The Bible says about holy ones: “I joined you in marriage to ONE HUSBAND” (2 Cor. 11:2 Greek). Therefore, ‘who are you to dominate the wife of another? Her own husband she is to obey’ (Rom. 14:4; Gen. 3:16; 1 Pet. 3:1, 5-6; Rom. 7:2).
4) We holy ones are EQUAL.
If you wanted to teach me that two people are EQUAL, what type of family relationship would you use to illustrate the point? Would you maybe use the word “BROTHERS”? This is the word that Jesus used to teach us holy ones that we are EQUAL, saying: “One is your Teacher, and all of you are BROTHERS” (Matt. 23:8-10). Therefore, no holy one can be above other holy ones, governing them. “One is your Teacher.”
The Bible makes very clear that we holy ones are EQUAL:
- we are SHEEP under ONE SHEPHERD (Matt. 26:31; John 10:16; 1 Pet. 2:24-25; Rev. 7:15-17; Hebr. 13:20-21; John 10:2-5; John 10:7-15; 1 Pet. 5:4; John 10:24-28),
- we are SLAVES under ONE MASTER (1 Cor. 7:22; Gal. 1:10; Matt. 25:19),
- we are PRIESTS under ONE HIGH PRIEST (1 Pet. 2:9; Mal. 2:7; Hebr. 3:1),
- we are FOLLOWERS of ONE LEADER (Matt. 23:10),
- we are MEMBERS OF BODY under ONE HEAD (1 Cor. 6:15 a; 1 Cor. 12:12; Col. 1:18),
- we are BROTHERS under ONE TEACHER (Matt. 23:8),
- we are SONS under ONE FATHER (Gal. 4:6-7; Rom. 8:15-17; Hebr. 12:9 “Father of sprits”),
Please notice the following about Rom. 8:15:
The Greek noun 5206 huiothesia means “a placing as son”. Though this word can be rendered “adoption” in some Greek writings, it should not be rendered “adoption” or “adoption as son” in Rom. 8:15, or in other such Bible verses. It should be rendered “placing as son”. Because holy ones are not placed as sons through ADOPTION, but, instead, we are placed as sons through NEW BIRTH, we are BEGOTTEN FROM ABOVE, as the Bible says: “Unless anyone is BEGOTTEN FROM ABOVE, he cannot see the Kingdom of God” and “he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3-8). We are acknowledged as God’s sons from the time of God’s BEGETTING us by his spirit (1 John 3:1; John 1:12-13). And just like a son of a human father is his flesh and blood, so we who are God’s sons will soon be nothing but his spirit (1 Cor. 15:42-44, 51-53; Eph. 1:13-14; Eph. 4:30; Rom. 8:23).
- we are WIFE under ONE HUSBAND (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:23, 31-32; 1 Cor. 6:16-17),
- we are KINGS and LORDS under ONE KING OF KINGS and LORD OF LORDS (Rev. 20:6; Gal. 4:1; 1 Cor. 3:21-23; Rev. 17:14; Rev. 19:16).
We ALL are brothers of Jesus (Matt. 25:40) and brothers of all angels (Rev 12:10). Jehovah and Jesus want that ALL brothers of Jesus, ALL members of Christ, are treated as EQUALS, since they are “giving greater honor to the part that had a lack, so that there should be NO DIVISION in the body” (1 Cor. 12:23-25).
Since we are EQUAL, “why are you treating as nothing the brother of you?” (Rom. 14:10)
5) We holy ones are PRIESTS.
The Bible says: “The lips of a PRIEST should safeguard knowledge, and people should seek the law from his mouth, because he is the MESSENGER of Jehovah of armies” (Mal. 2:7).
WHO are PRIESTS?
The Bible says that ALL holy ones are PRIESTS (1 Pet. 2:4-5, 9; Rev. 1:6; Rev. 20:6).
- any CLERGY CLASS among holy ones is LAWLESS
- any CLERGY CLASS, that is, any group of people, that exalts itself into a ruling position over holy ones, having power and influence over the lives of holy ones, like the clergy in Christendom, is LAWLESS
- any CLERGY CLASS, that is, any group of people, that teaches God’s Word to holy ones and represents God before holy ones, like the clergy in Christendom, is LAWLESS
- any CLERGY CLASS, that is, any group of people, that has any titles and positions to distinguish them from their fellow worshipers (Matt. 23:8-12), like “rabbi”, any “titles that put them high above the laity, to be looked up to, honored and materially supported”, [w75 4/1 pp. 201-204] any titles and positions that are all part of the “false CASTE SYSTEM which has been in place since the Middle Ages”, [w81 4/1 p. 15] any titles / positions that distinguish them from fellow worshipers, that is, from fellow holy ones, is LAWLESS (Did you notice these words in the Watchtower: “We have… turned the Church into an institution made up of active clerical SUPPLIERS and passive lay CONSUMERS.“)
- any CLERGY CLASS, that is, any group of people, which is provided materially (monthly allowance, housing, food, household services, car, doctor, travel expenses, etc.), or in any other way treated differently than other holy ones, is LAWLESS
- all inequality (Acts 6:1; 1 Cor. 12:25; Acts 15:9; Jam. 2:9) is LAWLESSNESS, WRONG
Each holy one is a PRIEST, “the MESSENGER of Jehovah of armies”, ‘from whose mouth people should seek the law’. Yes, “we are AMBASSADORS”, each one of us (2 Cor. 5:20; Eph. 6:19-20).
ALL holy ones are GOD-APPOINTED PRIESTS, none of holy ones is appointed by men (1 Peter 2:9 compare 1 Kings 13:33-34; 2 Chron. 11:14).
6) We holy ones are to rule, or govern, TOGETHER.
The Bible says that ALL holy ones are KINGS (1 Pet. 2:9; Rev. 1:6; Rev. 20:6).
Paul specifically condemned the idea that some holy ones rule without other holy ones, saying: “Have you begun ruling as kings WITHOUT US? I really wish that you had begun ruling as kings, so that we also might rule with you as kings” (1 Cor. 4:8).
Holy ones are to rule, or govern, “TOGETHER” (2 Tim. 2:12).
7) True knowledge comes through MANY.
There is no such verse in the Bible which says that only some certain men receive from Jehovah all knowledge and understanding.
Dan. 12:4 does not say ‘SOME CERTAIN MEN will examine the Book thoroughly and the true knowledge will become abundant’, no, it says: ‘MANY will examine the Book thoroughly and the true knowledge will become abundant’. The true knowledge, therefore, comes through MANY, not through SOME CERTAIN MEN.
1 Cor. 14:26 does not say: “When you come together, SOME CLERGY CLASS has a psalm, SOME CLERGY CLASS has a teaching, SOME CLERGY CLASS has a revelation, SOME CLERGY CLASS has a tongue, SOME CLERGY CLASS has an interpretation”, no, it says: “When you come together, ONE has a psalm, ANOTHER has a teaching, ANOTHER has a revelation, ANOTHER has a tongue, and ANOTHER has an interpretation”. Therefore, what we holy ones have when we come together should not come through any clergy class, but, instead, it should come through the operation of God’s holy spirit in EACH holy one.
8) SCRIPTURE is the PRIME SOURCE of religious truth and spiritual food.
Jesus said: “YOUR WORD is truth” (Joh 17:17), and Jesus said: “Man must live… on every word that comes from JEHOVAH’S MOUTH” (Matt. 4:4). Thus, no man-made publication can ever be the MAIN CHANNEL of our spiritual feeding program.
All so called Christian literature in this world is based on God’s Word, so to speak. Is it all FROM GOD, or is it all FROM MEN? Isn’t THE BIBLE the only literature that is FROM GOD, and all other literature is FROM MEN? Please, be aware of what happened to Herod (Acts 12:21-23). People shouted: “A GOD’S voice, and NOT A MAN’S!”, just like people today are shouting: “It is FROM GOD, and NOT FROM MEN!” Dear ones, it is not FROM GOD, it is not inspired of God, it is FROM MEN. Indeed, THE BIBLE, which is inspired of God, is the only literature that is FROM GOD (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:21).
Why do you believe what you believe? Because SOME MEN told you those things? Because those things are in some PUBLICATION? Well, countless people have exactly the same response, they believe what they believe for the same reason, saying: “SOME PEOPLE told me…”, “MY PRIEST explained that…”, “THE POPE said…” Can you see the similarity? It is called FOLLOWING PEOPLE, instead of following God’s written Word.
The BIBLE is the only publication that is “INSPIRED OF GOD”, so, the BIBLE is the only publication that has JEHOVAH’S WORDS on which we must live (Matt. 4:4) and the only publication that tells what is TRUE, what is FALSE, what is RIGHT, what is WRONG (John 17:17; 2 Tim. 3:16-17).
9) GOD TEACHES all who are in the New Covenant, NOT MEN.
The Bible says:
“All your sons will be TAUGHT by JEHOVAH“ (Isa. 54:13).
“Your Grand Instructor will no longer hide himself, and you will see your Grand Instructor with your OWN EYES. And your OWN EARS will hear a word behind you saying, “This is the way. Walk in it”, in case you should go to the right or in case you should go to the left” (Isa. 30:20-21).
“For THIS IS THE COVENANT that I will make… I will put my law within them, and in their heart I will write it. And I will become their God, and they will become my people. And they will no longer teach… each one his brother, saying, ‘Know Jehovah!’ for they will all know me, from the least to the greatest of them” (Jer. 31:33-34).
“For THIS IS THE COVENANT that I will make… I will put my laws in their mind, and in their hearts I will write them. And I will become their God, and they will become my people. And they will no longer teach… each one his brother, saying: “Know Jehovah!” For they will all know me, from the least to the greatest of them” (Hebr. 8:10-11).
So, are those in the New Covenant to teach others in the New Covenant?
The Bible said: “They will no longer teach… each one his brother.” It is part of the New Covenant that GOD TEACHES all who are in the New Covenant, NOT MEN.
How does God teach?
A) God’s written Word teaches.
In the first century, holy ones were reading God’s Word, not man-made publications that explain God’s Word. They were reading God’s Word and speaking God’s Word.
The Bible is not an INTERPRETATION of God’s Word, an EXPLANATION of God’s Word, no, it is GOD’S WORD (2 Pet. 1:20-21). No other publication is.
We have the HEBREW SCRIPTURES and we have the WORDS OF JESUS written through his apostles, and these both existed in the first century too; they had the HEBREW SCRIPTURES and they had the WORDS OF JESUS that apostles transmitted to those who had not heard these words from Jesus (2 Pet. 3:2; 2 Tim. 3:15-17).
B) Holy spirit teaches – PERSONAL INSTRUCTION.
“The holy spirit will teach you”, “the holy spirit… will teach you all things”, “the spirit of the truth… will guide you into all the truth… and… will declare to you the things to come”, “the spirit of the truth, which… remains with you and is in you”, “we received… the spirit that is from God, so that we might know the things that have been kindly given us by God”, “the anointing that you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to be teaching you; but the anointing from him is teaching you about all things” (Matt. 10:19-20; Lu. 12:12; John 14:26; John 15:26; John 16:13-14; John 14:17; 1 Cor. 2:12; Col. 1:9; Eph. 1:16-17; 2 Tim. 2:7; John 14:23; 1 Cor. 3:16; Rom. 8:9; 1 John 3:24; 1 John 2:27).
C) Holy spirit teaches – INSTRUCTION THROUGH OTHER HOLY ONES.
Holy spirit teaches, not by means of a clergy class, no, it teaches through ALL holy ones, through ANY holy one. This teaching is an act of holy spirit, not an act of men (1 Cor. 14:26, 30-31; 1 Cor. 14:24-25; Col. 3:16).
Holy ones do not all have one and the same gift, no, we have DIFFERENT gifts, “we have gifts that DIFFER” (Rom. 12:6), just like members of a body have gifts that DIFFER (1 Cor. 12:19-21). “All these [DIFFERENT] operations are performed by the very same spirit, distributing to each one” (1 Cor. 12:4-11). An act of holy spirit, not an act of men (compare 2 Chron. 24:20; 2 Chron. 15:1-2; 2 Chron. 20:14-15).
God’s holy spirit operates in DIFFERENT ways on each holy one “for the equipping of holy ones to work of service, to building up the Body of Christ” (Eph. 4:12-13 Greek, compare, the corresponding Greek verb, Hebr. 13:21 “to equip”, and the same Greek word but another preposition as its prefix, 2 Tim. 3:17 “to be fully equipped”).
10) Each holy one is the LIGHT OF THE WORLD.
No human was teaching Jesus after Jesus was anointed (Matt. 3:16; Isa. 11:2), but, instead, he was the one who was teaching others. The Bible says: “You do not need anyone to be teaching you; but the anointing from him is teaching you about all things” (1 John 2:27). “The anointing” was teaching Jesus “about all things”, and thus Jesus did not need any men to teach him, and “the anointing” is teaching all followers of Jesus “about all things”, and thus we followers of Jesus do not need any men to teach us. Of course, we have to “think” and “meditate on” the words in the Bible (2 Tim. 2:7; 1 Tim. 4:15), these words must be constantly in our mind and on our heart and in our mouth (Joshua 1:8; Deut. 6:5-9; Deut. 17:18-20; Matt. 4:4).
When Jesus was on Earth, he was THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD, shining light from God’s Word (John 8:12; John 9:5). And Jesus said that after he is gone, his followers are THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD, shining light from God’s Word (Matt. 5:14-15). Just like “people light a lamp” (Matt. 5:15), so Jehovah has lighted countless Lamps, for each holy one is a Lamp (Matt. 25:7; John 5:35). The operation of God’s holy spirit in each holy one is like the FIRE in the lamps (Rom. 12:11 “be burning in the spirit”) and God’s Word is like the OIL in the lamps, and these both together create LIGHT, thus enabling each holy one to be THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD, shining the God-given light as a Lamp. [w96 7/1 p. 17 par. 14]
11) We holy ones have ONE LORD and ONE GOD.
Are we to obey MEN? No, “we must obey GOD as ruler rather than MEN” (1 Cor. 7:23; Rom. 6:16; Acts 5:29; Gal. 1:10). We must tell to others what the BIBLE teaches (Acts 4:19-20), and not what MEN teach, no matter what it brings to us (John 9:22; John 12:42-43; John 16:1-2).
No men can be ‘MASTERS OVER OUR FAITH’ (2 Cor. 1:24), telling us what we are to belive and what we are to teach to others and how we are to serve God, because we have “ONE LORD” and “ONE GOD”, and we have their words IN THE BIBLE telling us what we are to belive and what we are to teach to others and how we are to serve God (Eph. 4:4-6).
12) Jesus said: “IT WILL NOT BE LIKE THIS AMONG YOU“
The Bible does not support a concept of a CLERGY CLASS. It is imagination of those who have not understood what Jesus taught, or who do not want to follow what Jesus taught, who said in Matt. 20:25-26:
“Rulers of the nations exercise lordship over them
and the great men exercise authority over them.
IT WILL NOT BE LIKE THIS AMONG YOU.”
Any group of people exercising lordship and authority over holy ones is UNBIBLICAL.
13) People “not having the spirit” MAKE DISTINCTIONS between holy ones
The Bible specifically says that “in the last days”, “in the last time”, people will come who are proceeding according to their own desires, people professing to be holy ones, but “not having the spirit”, not having “Christ’s spirit” (Rom. 8:9), and “these are the ones who MAKE DISTINCTIONS” between holy ones (2 Pet. 3:3; Jude 17-19 Greek), though GOD has made “NO DISTINCTION AT ALL” between holy ones (Acts 15:8-9). We holy ones should be “one [person] in Christ” (Gal. 3:28), one Body, Christ’s Body (1 Cor. 12:12-13), equal members of the Body (1 Cor. 12:23-25) under one Head, Jesus (Col. 1:17-18).
“THERE SHOULD BE NO DIVISION IN THE BODY” (Acts 15:8-9; 1 Cor. 12:23-25). There must not be any ‘CLASS DISTINCTION’ (Jam. 2:4). There must not be a situation in which “the Christ has been divided” in two (1 Cor. 1:13), in which the Body is cut in 2 (clergy-laity distinction).
14) APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION is not a Bible teaching.
Apostolic succession, the doctrine that the 12 apostles had authority over other holy ones and have successors to whom that supposed authority has been passed by divine appointment, is NOT A BIBLE TEACHING. See KB.
15) We must follow GOD’S WORD, not MEN.
What do you do when THE WORD OF MEN contradicts THE WORD OF GOD?
Those who FOLLOW MEN accept THE WORD OF MEN as the truth, and by doing so they turn their back on THE WORD OF GOD, but those who FOLLOW GOD accept THE WORD OF GOD as the truth (John 17:17), and by doing so they turn their back on THE WORD OF MEN.
Since GOD is the One who created everything and gave us life (Isa. 42:5; Acts 17:24-25, 28; Job 12:7-10), and since the Bible says about God: “YOUR WORD is truth” (John 17:17), and since the Bible says: “You are slaves of the one you obey”, “STOP BECOMING SLAVES of MEN”, for “we must obey GOD as ruler rather than MEN” (1 Cor. 7:23; Rom. 6:16; Acts 5:29; Gal. 1:10), thus we must follow GOD, accepting THE WORD OF GOD as the truth, accepting GOD’S WORD to tell us what we are to believe, what we are to do, what we are to be, instead of following MEN and accepting THE WORD OF MEN as the truth, accepting MEN’S WORD to tell us what we are to believe, what we are to do, what we are to be.
Since JESUS said: “If you remain in MY WORD, you are really MY DISCIPLES, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32), thus followers of Christ will remain in HIS WORD, which is IN THE BIBLE, and since he said: “Your LEADER is one, THE CHRIST” (Matt. 23:10), thus followers of Christ will never follow MEN, no MEN can lead followers of Christ.
This is the warning given by holy ones during the decades:
“They allow GOD to rule them as… they do not follow HUMANS but constantly verify in the BIBLE the things that they are learning.” [w98 9/1 pp. 14-15 par. 6]
“Because truth originates with God and lies originate with Satan, it follows that all doctrine and teachings of men that are CONTRARY to the WORD OF GOD are FALSE TEACHINGS… The WORD OF GOD is true and that is our MEASURING ROD. What is CONTRARY to the WORD OF GOD is a LIE and it proceeds from the DEVIL. It is for our own welfare that we abandon everything having to do with lies and stick close to the truth. Christians should not believe things merely because they are said or printed, but MUST JUDGE WHAT ARE TRUE BY THEIR CONFORMITY TO THE SCRIPTURES … Acts 17:11.” [w54 10/1 pp. 587-588 par. 9 Lies Lead to Loss of Life]
“If a doctrine CONTRADICTS GOD’S WORD… then BELIEVING it and TEACHING it discredits Jehovah and brings us into opposition to him.” [w88 6/1 p. 15 par. 2]
“Christians follow GOD and CHRIST, not MEN… Yes, be a true Christian—not a follower of MEN.” [w62 9/1 pp. 533-536 Christians—Not Followers of Men]
The Bible says to holy ones: “Stop becoming SLAVES of MEN“, stop being ‘COMPLETELY ENSLAVED’ by MEN (1 Cor. 7:23; Gal. 2:4-5; 2 Cor. 11:20).