Q: I would like to ask you about the idea that all should partake at the memorial. I am not sure about this idea. It seems to me that the Greek scriptures are directed to ones only with a heavenly hope. Only we are actually party to the new covenant and so therefore should not only we partake? This would not exclude Christ as mediator to those with an earthly hope. The anointed are the temple in which holy spirit dwells and by association with us those with an earthly hope serve the most high with us officiating as a priesthood. Christ's death was a day of atonement for all, he took the value of that to his Father in heaven the most holy as High Priest when he returned there following resurrection. However to partake of the emblems is only for the priesthood. Only we have a place reserved for us in heaven, only we will sit on thrones and rule as king's and power of judgement be given us, only we are of the lamb's bride and whilst on earth only we are of his body, he is our head.

Christ is also head of earthly class but they are not of the body as we are. They have holy spirit in their lives but not as we do. They serve the Most High only in association with us and there fore are not I believe to partake of the emblems at the memorial.


A:  What else can I say on this subject that hasn't been said already? But since you have told me a few personal things about yourself, I will try and answer in a manner that will apply specifically to you. The Watchtower has said many times that the interpretation of how we celebrate the Memorial dates back to 1938, and is based entirely on Rutherford's teaching on the subject of the "great crowd," whom he also called the "Jonadabs"; and who later came to be identified with the "other sheep" of John 10:16. (The Watchtower March 1, 1938, page 75, paragraphs 50-52;  The Watchtower March 1, 1978, p. 11 "Memorializing Christ’s Death—How Much Longer?")

Your explanation as to who may partake at the Memorial, even as the Society teaches it, is not substantiated in the Scriptures. The Memorial is not about the anointed; and neither does the occasion allow for them to identify themselves as such. The Memorial—or the Lord's Evening Meal as it is also called—belongs entirely to Jesus. It is his death that we commemorate. Jesus told his disciples on that last night with them, when he instituted the Lord's Evening Meal, to "keep doing this in remembrance of me." And, as the apostle Paul explains: "For as often as you eat this loaf and drink this cup, you keep proclaiming the death of the Lord, until he arrives." We celebrate the death of the Lord Jesus, who is the "Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world." (Luke 22:19,20; 1 Cor. 11:23-26; John 1:29) Our love and obedience to him, together with our appreciation for his suffering and death which made possible the forgiveness of sins and opened the way for everlasting life, motivates us to closely consider the meaning of the event once a year, on the very night that he instituted it. And we will continue to do so "until he arrives"; —not until the last of the "anointed" have died, as the Society theorizes.

The Memorial is not about the anointed! Who are the "anointed" ones anyway? Really, it is not until his arrival that Jesus will clearly identify the ones who will rule with him in his kingdom, which is then their reward for having proved faithful. (1 Cor. 15:21,22; 1 John 2:1-4) None of his disciples who have the anointing are yet serving as kings and priests while on earth. Their thrones are in heaven! Jesus told his disciples: "Happy is that slave if his master on arriving finds him doing so. Truly I say to you, He will appoint him over all his belongings." (Matt. 24:45-47) The appointment over all his belongings refers to their inheritance in heaven, and this does not happen until his arrival, which, according to the Watchtower's latest understanding is still future (see July 15, 2013). It would be more than foolishness on their part to celebrate their reward before their master's arrival, for this might actually cause him to identify them to be wicked; in which case they would be thrown out into the darkness with the hypocrites. (Luke 12:40-46; 1 Thess. 4:15-17)

If someone is indeed chosen by God, he must be careful not to follow the wicked course of Saul, whom Jehovah had anointed as king over Israel when he was "little in his own eyes"; but soon thereafter was rejected upon becoming presumptuous, even to the point of erecting a monument to himself. (1 Sam. 15:10-12, 17, 22,23) Many who profess to be anointed use the Memorial as their opportunity to identify themselves as such to others, desiring to bask in some supposed glory in front of their "unanointed" brothers and the invited unbelievers. How do you think Jehovah views such ones? (James 4:6)

Can you point to even just one Scripture that tells us that only certain disciples are permitted to partake of the bread and the wine at the Memorial, to the exclusion of everyone else? The Society has often pointed out that the Memorial replaced the Passover, quoting Paul's words: "Christ our passover has been sacrificed." (1 Cor. 5:7) Who was it that celebrated the Passover under the old covenant, according to the Law that Jehovah gave his people by his servant Moses? Was it only the priests, while the rest of the nation of Israel was present as mere observers? Or, if the entire nation of Israel represented the anointed today, as the Society claims, did the Israelites observe the Passover while the alien residents were invited as observers but not partakers? I am sure you are familiar with the Scripture that says: “And in case an alien resident should be residing with you as an alien, he also must prepare the passover sacrifice to Jehovah. According to the statute of the passover and according to its regular procedure is the way he should do. There should exist one statute for you people, both for the alien resident and for the native of the land.” (Numbers 9:14)

Seeing that Jehovah had one statute for both, the native Israelite and the alien resident, why are some teaching two separate statutes today: one for the anointed and another for everyone else? The apostle Paul does not even hint at two different manners of observing the Lord's evening Meal in his letter to the Corinth congregation, which is quoted at every Memorial.
(1 Cor. 11:20-29) The Mosaic Law has meaning for us because it "has become our tutor leading to Christ," and if our Memorial has replaced the Passover then we should apply its statutes in the same way. There is no difference between the person who claims to be anointed and the person who does not. To teach otherwise is clearly a matter of going "beyond the things that are written." Paul warned that even if an angel out of heaven were to declare to us something beyond what he and the apostles had taught, "let him be accursed." Neither Paul nor any of the other apostles have said anything about there being two classes at the Memorial. (1 Cor. 4:6; Gal. 1:6-9; 3:24) Jesus warned that if we become guilty of making God's word invalid by our teachings, doctrines, and traditions, then our worship is in vain; making the worship unacceptable to God. That would be a serious matter, for such a person would miss out on receiving any reward! (Matt. 15:6-9; 7:21-23)

Jesus' instruction to his disciples to "keep doing this in remembrance of me" was straight forward, lacking any limitation as to who it included or excluded. Can we enlarge on his directive by adding our own prohibition when he himself did not do so? What can be said about a person who actually makes someone feel guilty for obeying Jesus; or even worse, hinders someone from doing so? Does it then not become for the person a matter of obeying "God as ruler rather than men"? (Acts 4:19; 5:29) And what if that person who is doing the hindering professes to be of the anointed? Will Jesus not expose such person as an evil slave upon his arrival? Our responsibility is to encourage and assist others to obey Jesus and Jehovah; not to prevent them from doing so. We celebrate the Memorial once a year to commemorate the death of Jesus until he arrives. It has absolutely nothing to do with who has what hope, whether in heaven or everlasting life on a paradise earth. In fact, those who rule with Jesus in his kingdom will be servants on behalf of those who are living on earth, just as Jesus set the example for his disciples while he was with them. The glory is not in their position, but in their service as kings and priests. (Luke 22:24-27; Matt. 20:28) Jesus condemned the self-righteous
attitude of the scribes and Pharisees, which we must avoid at all cost. (Matt. 23:1-12) The desire to bask in the glory of the occasion at the Memorial, which belongs to Jesus alone, is highly contemptuous of Jesus and of the occasion, to whom alone the evening belongs. (Phil. 2:5-11)

You say that it seems to you "that the Greek scriptures are directed to ones only with a heavenly hope." That is also what the Society teaches; and therein lies the problem. The Law that Jehovah gave to Israel, did it apply only to the anointed priests? To be sure, he had specific laws for the priests and the Levites, but much of the Law applied to the entire nation. And again I would like to repeat that God had one Law which applied equally to everyone, including even the alien resident. When something specifically applied to the service of the priests at the temple, Jehovah clearly stated that. (Num. 18:5-7) The same is true of the inspired Greek Scriptures. He has only one inspired written Word, which contains everything we need to know, no matter what our hope may be. (2 Tim. 3:16,17) A person who is truly chosen by God knows the portions of the Scriptures that apply to him, because he is taught by holy spirit to understand them, which may leave others puzzled. And, in turn, others will know the things that concern them, as they too render sacred service to God in his temple. (1 John 2:26-28; Rev. 7:14,15; 1 Cor. 3:16,17)

And one more point: If Jehovah had in mind to restrict the celebration of the Memorial to only the "little flock of "anointed" followers, he would certainly not be inviting others to be present as mere observers on such a sacred occasion, which would then be a private gathering. But as it is, the Memorial commemorates the death of our Lord Jesus, which brings blessings to everyone who exercises faith in the ransom. (John 3:16-18) It should not be confused with "the marriage of the Lamb," which is between only Jesus and his bride of 144,000; and to which the great crowd is invited as guests. (Matt. 22:1-13; Luke 12:32; Rev. 19:7-9; 14:1-4)