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Crisis of Conscience
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Crisis of Conscience

4.38 of 5 stars 4.38  ·  rating details  ·  201 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Raymond Franz, former member of the governing body shares his true account in an honest, unbiased manner of his experience of his life as a Jehovah's Witness and the events that led up to his formal resignation from the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society.
Paperback, Fourth Edition, 446 pages
Published June 2002 by Commentary Press (first published 1983)
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Mar 26, 2008 Stacey rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: present/former JWs, anyone who has family or friends in the JW organization.
Recommended to Stacey by: my husband.
This book was written quite a few years back as an expose of the JW religion, told by a former high-level insider.

It is well written, with enough documentation so that anyone who was present as a JW at the time these events were happening, will recognize the honesty of his account.

CoC motivated me to open my eyes and really examine what I believe, instead of just believing what I was told.

P.S. I'm no longer a JW, and would never go back. I'm indebted to Mr. Franz for stimulating my critical th
This book rocked my entire world. Ray Franz was a member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses and talks about what goes on during their secret meetings about the affairs of Jehovah's Witnesses all over the world. Case in point, the rape, brutal murders, and village burning of the Malawi people all because the Society told them not be buy a 25cent political card, when across the world in Mexico, the brothers were told they could bribe soldiers just to avoid the draft.
In other words, alot
Kimberly Schwelm
I bought this book back in 2002 I believe. I read half of it and then got side tracked by life I guess. :) I was raised in the religious organization of the Jehovah's Witnesses and so was the author of this book. I have not been affiliated with the Jehovah's Witnesses or any other religion for almost 10 years now. I have recently been back in contact with some friends I grew up with and who also left the organization 7 years ago. I have one brother and one sister who have also recently left the ...more
This book is perfect at the job Ray Franz set out to accomplish. He was a member of the Governing Body of Jehovah's witnesses and left due to cognitive dissonance. He writes about his experiences and has well documented proof of the things he says. The tone is perfect: Not angry but factual and honest. I am afraid that only a Jehovah's Witness or a former member would understand or appreciate all of the contents. But considering that the audience is just that, it is appropriate.
As a former Jehovah's witness, this book was beyond eye opening. I am so grateful to the author for writing this book in such an honest and articulate fashion.
Jewel Mead
After investing some 20 years under the domination of the this man made organization this book gave me a great deal of reassurance that after having escaped I was not alone. Ramond Franz who dedicated the majority of his vital years to the society tells his intimate life story of dedication and then betrayal even though he was considered a loyal and tirelessly dedicated member of the governing body. Boycotted after decades of service he was cast off as an ugly stain on this predomately white sel ...more
This is an insider's view of the Jehovah's Witness organization from a man who was a higher-up for a long time. With this sort of exposé you run the risk of the author being one-sided, but I really felt like Franz tried hard to be fair and I could sense his sadness at how things came out. There were some parts where I got bogged down in the minutiae of their procedures, but it was fascinating with regard to JW prophecies and how they seem to change to suit the circumstance. I also was intrigued ...more
A MUST READ for anyone thinking of leaving the Jehovah's Witnesses or have already left!
Don Skotch Vail
If you have never been part of the Jehovah's Witnesses religion, I am not sure what this book would mean to you. If you are interested in the subject of thought control, or institutional evil, then you may get something out of this. But if you have been a member of this religion, then this book will resonate from your teeth to your toes.

To be a Witness is to give up much of your creativity, your ability to express yourself freely, and the sum of your critical thinking. Above all, being a Witnes
Terri Long
Pretty powerful. And heartbreaking. It's slow in some places but I would recommend skimming through and reading more into the 1980 era he writes about. Only a JW or former will really understand. It's written with eloquence and respect, certainly not a religion bashing book by any means.
Daniel Chamberlayne
This is a powerful book about Raymond Franz, former member of the governing body in the Jehovah Witnesses...A must read!
Stephen Cranney
Sad. He spent virtually of his life in the Jehovah's Witness organization (with a few years at the very top) only to end up being excommunicated for eating a meal with an excommunicant. Unlike many exposes, He doesn't seem to have an ax to grind and refrains from hyperbole. He does get bogged down into technical details that I found it hard to care about (I guess biblical chronology becomes very important when you're a biblical literalist), but he does a good job conveying the sincere heartache ...more
Russ Painter
Fantastic insider look into the crooks at the top of the Jehovah's Witness empire. Extremely well documented.
Daria Smith
Ultimately you will take away yet another example of religious hypocrisy. This was a great book but it won't make a bit of sense to someone who is not a Jehovah's Witness. I found this book maddening as a former member of the religion. I wanted to picket the WBTS headquarters, but it's a total waste of time to do so. Great for educational purposes, but please don't let bitterness against JW's keep you from growing as a person.
C.t. Russell
This book was written by former governing body member (highest title in the organization), Ray Franz. This book is a MUST READ for any Jehovah's Witness or former Jehovah's Witness. That said, i could see how it would bore you to tears if you were not affiliated and didn't know the Watchtower lingo. Ray Franz had the courage to put down what was really going down in the organization and paid for it in his elderly life. Although it does get bogged down with scripture, it is beyond interesting to ...more
Excellent book & very helpful understanding the Watch Tower Society from one of its former main leaders.
A massive eye opener for me. The last snip to sever my cult umbilical cord.
Jim Reaugh
I personally found this book helpful when leaving this organization. It helped to fortify my feelings and ease my conscience. It helped me see that what I was feeling was not in my head but based in facts and , most important, unscriptural. I would recommend this book to anyone who questions the date of 1914, anyone who feels loaded down or guilty by this organization for not doing more, or if you don't understand the generation teaching. It becomes clear by the author why these things are said. ...more
Johannah Hagerman
I am learning that though the WTBTS uses the techniques outlined in this book (NOT meant to be an expose, by the way)in extreme ways, I have seen so much of what is practiced within those walls as fairly commonplace among all the churches I've been a part of in my past. I have not yet completed reading this book and so will reserve final judgment of what I've read for later on.
The "crisis of conscience" by the author of this book all stemmed from the struggle one often has between choosing loyal
Marcia Kassem
excellent eye opener of what i use to be very actively apart of.... Thank God He (Allah) showed be the real truth in Islam.. never felt so free the only judge for me is Allah,,,, may Allah bless this man Ray Franz for exposing the truth of this organization that tries so desperately to hide it by excommunicating any member for showing any disagreements in views.
This book opened my eyes and brought clarity to many things that were nagging at me about the WTBTS. I know in all certainty that this religion does not hold up as truth and they are false prophets.
The author humbly shows what it is to be a moral person.
Sara Mccandless
Very good book by Raymond Franz. If you ever need to find out what goes on at the governing body council and their decisions on what get printed in Jehovah's Witness literature as well as social aspects that went on at Bethel and Theology they struggled with this is a great resource book for just that! Raymond's tone in this book is very modest and he presents others involved in a humble and caring way. His experience in his life and his personal conscience decisions are also reviled and touchin ...more
Timothy Boyd
An interesting look at the inner workings of this man's religion. Good read. Recommended
Left off on page 211. I felt like the section I'm on was mostly about justifying Franz's own behavior, and I'm not too interested. Also, his litany of details about doctrinal inaccuracies doesn't interest me much anymore, since doctrine and Bible translation don't interest me. Not believing in the Bible as a divinely inspired book makes these arguments moot.
Interesting information about Jehova Witnesses, but I didn't like the structure of the book and its continuos repetition of topics.
Nov 02, 2008 Catfish rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: JWs thinking of leaving their faith, any student of religion
This is a great example of fact and document presentation without spite, without emotional finger pointing.
Stephanie Barnes
Good cult exit reading from a real insider! This was one life changing book for me.
This was actually the first edition that I read instead of the fourth.
Jun 28, 2008 Micmoc rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those interested in th Jehovah's Witnesses movement
An eye opener concerning the Jehovah's Witnesses movement
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In Search of Christian Freedom Crisis of Conscience: Raymond Franz Der Gewissenskonflikt. Menschen gehorchen oder Gott treu bleiben? Crisis of Conscience, Abridged for E-Reader Devices In Search of Christian Freedom: Edition for Digital Distribution Abridged Formatting

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