In the last Good Friday we had, a member of our brother’s team brought up the topic of Jehovah’s Witnesses not celebrating this festival.
A heated debate commenced as many had questions about why this group did not take part in the holiday. Some said the group did not believe in Christ’s resurrection while others said that they simply did not want to.
Having been brought up with Jehovah’s Witnesses, I had a better understanding of their beliefs, and that’s why I decided to write this article.
So, do Jehovah’s Witnesses celebrate Good Friday?
Jehovah’s Witnesses hold a commemoration of Jesus’ death every year, according to the Bible’s lunar calendar, instead of celebrating the Good Friday. They believe that Jesus wanted them to remember his death in this way.
In this article, I invite you to journey with me as I explain why Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t celebrate Good Friday, what they do on that day, and much more.
Why don’t Jehovah’s Witnesses celebrate Good Friday?
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus’ death is not worth celebrating. They argue that Jesus commanded them to always remember His death in Luke 22:19-20: “And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”
Therefore, they place a high value on remembering the work that Jesus Christ did on the cross. They also believe that Jesus’ death was a ransom for Adam’s sin.
Scholars argue that Jehovah’s Witnesses do not believe that Jesus died on a Friday and therefore, they hold their commemoration on the day of the week that matches with Nisan 14th.
Jehovah’s Witnesses also believe that celebrating a holiday like Good Friday is not biblical; and they consult the bible to determine whether the holiday is acceptable or not.
They consider a holiday that is not biblical as a pagan holiday and believe that it does not please Jehovah.
What do Jehovah’s Witnesses do on Good Friday?
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Good Friday is a usual day. They do not give it special attention as the other Christians do.
Theologians have it that Jehovah’s Witnesses have only two celebrations that they believe in; commemoration of the death of Jesus and wedding anniversaries.
Outside these two, they do not consider any other. However, they believe in the spreading of the word of God to the world, and on Good Friday, they share the word of God with others.
Can Jehovah’s Witness celebrate Easter?
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe they cannot celebrate Easter. According to Jehovah’s Witness’s belief, Easter is a celebration that is rooted in paganism. They also argue that the Easter holiday is not in the bible and therefore they cannot celebrate.
They base their belief on Exodus 20:5 and 1kings18:21, arguing that the Easter festival is rooted in the ancient fertility events which did not please God.
They believe that God requires absolute holy worship and He dislikes worship that involves activities that He has disapproved of.
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that their refrain from celebrating Easter is backed up by the bible, in Proverbs 3:21 which encourages them to practice wisdom and their ability to think: “My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight, preserve sound judgment and discretion.”
They consider the Easter holiday a human tradition. However, Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in the resurrection of Jesus only that they cannot engage in celebrating the Easter holiday and they argue that there is no evidence in the Bible that Jesus was resurrected on Easter.
What do Jehovah’s Witnesses do on Easter Monday?
It is not clearly defined what the Jehovah’s Witnesses do on Easter Monday since they do not consider it a holiday.
However, it is believed that on such a day, Jehovah’s Witnesses share their beliefs with others through evangelism. In their sharing, they respect the decision of their target recipient, an act they draw from Joshua 24:15.
They believe this verse encourages them to honor all men regardless of their religion. Scholars argue that Jehovah’s Witnesses carry on with their other normal activities on Easter Monday.
These activities include publishing work, family life, construction projects, community help work such as giving hope to the sick in hospitals, and special occasions such as conventions.
Do Jehovah’s Witnesses condemn those who celebrate Easter?
Scholars argue that Jehovah’s Witnesses condemn those who celebrate Easter. Since they (Jehovah’s Witnesses) believe a holiday that is not in the Bible offends Jehovah, they see the people who celebrate this kind of holiday as a sinner.
However, they believe that every person has the freedom to make their own decisions without being compelled to do so.
Scholars have it that Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that they are the only true believers and that all others are conformed to the patterns that are not of the Bible.
These, they believe, are the celebrations and holidays that people observe.
As a theologian, I have always been curious to learn more about the Christian Faith. That is why I pursued a Certificate in Christian Studies, Certificate in Christian Foundations and a Masters in Theology. I also have an immersive experience in editing for numerous websites. I have worked as an editor for over a decade and am currently the editor-in-chief at Christian Faith Guide. I enjoy working as an editor and feel privileged to share my expertise and help spread God’s word. You can read more about me on the about us page.