Subjection Is a Gray Issue
It is such a fine line - this issue of following an organization. Has Jehovah had theocratic arrangements for his people before? Certainly, for a good amount of the history of his dealings with humans.
Submission IS important but using one's one power of reason is as well. Blind obedience is not something Jehovah has ever expected of his people. Why is this? Because we've always been led by imperfect humans. Consider King David. He was the ANOINTED of Jehovah yet he was an outcast at the time. The 'theocratic arrangement' at the time in effect disfellowshipped him, forcing him to live like a nomad. It was David's faith in Jehovah that allowed him to continue on and eventually things were corrected.
Likewise in the first century, many of the anointed at that time still promoted circumcision with Peter even refusing to associate with Gentile Christians at one point. How would the brothers and sisters in those congregations react? Would they blindly follow this errant guidance or would they use their consciences? In time, under Paul's direction, things were rectified.
In modern times during the 60s and 70s elders were given license to police the sexual relations of married Christians. If they found out that oral sex was taking place even between consenting married Witnesses, a disfellowshipping could occur!! This issue was later corrected so that elders no longer police such issues. But imagine living at that time under such an oppressive regime! Brothers and sisters who used their own Bible trained consciences would have realized this was a private issue and none of the elders' business. Would they be following organizational procedure at the time? No, but they would have been right NOT to.
There have also been a number of medical issues, mostly many years ago, involving criticism of such things as vaccines. How would we have reacted reading these proclamations in the Watchtower? Would we have blindly accepted this as theocratic direction as just fallen in line? I would hope reasonableness and common sense would have won out.
There was a huge issue made of not getting married and not bearing children due to Armaggedon's coming so soon. The book 'Children' written in the 1940s was particularly harsh in this regard. The direction from the theocratic organization was: DO NOT GET MARRIED. PERIOD. To do so was considered going against theocratic direction and betraying a lack of faith. Unbelievably, this counsel had such an impact on my father that he did not attend his own sister's wedding at this time! And she was an active Witness! CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!!!? Again this is a case where submitting blindly to what was considered theocratic direction at the time was flatout wrong to do! If you WANTED to live life single and pioneer, that would have been fine. But that wasn't what was being said. You were being TOLD to stay single. My father was quite emotional when he told me what he did. He told me this shortly before he died. He realized how wrong both the direction was and how wrong his personal actions were.
Likewise 1975 WAS promoted to a great extent both through talks and in print. Many Witnesses got their hopes up but those who used their own powers of reason would have realized that Jehovah would never identify a date that clearly Jesus said NO ONE knows. They would have been very cautious about putting faith in 'every inspired utterance' as it were. In 1980, the Watchtower issued a formal apology for the false expectations.
So it all comes down to a matter of balance. Is Jehovah using the Watchtower organization? Absolutely! Should we follow blindly? NO. I am aware of several current problems within the organization that Jehovah may exact punishment for. The anointed themselves are not always in agreement. That is why we need to always focus on our own personal relationship with Jehovah and build our own faith directly in him so that if anything unexpected might happen perhaps even in the organization structure of things, our faith in him will not waver.
At least someone managed to put it in words... I know I can't do this "blind faith" thing.