Fear is not a motivator. Rather, fear is paralyzing. The religious teaching of wicked people being destroyed at Armageddon (god's war) is a serious lie that flies in the face of love.
In the summer, we traveled fifty miles to Winnipeg for religious conventions with the "paradise people." Ever since I was old enough to remember, my mom and dad, brothers, and I climbed into the front seat of our 1951 Chevrolet pickup truck and off we went to the big city of Winnipeg. At first, I liked going because we saw people we knew. But, by the time I began to understand what was going on, it became less and less entertaining, as we heard talks about the impending Armageddon. The world was going to end. God was going to destroy all the wicked people on earth. Now, because we went to meetings and conventions, we would know what to do to survive this terrible tribulation because we weren't wicked. After all, we went to meetings and conventions. And, after we cleaned up the dead bodies and destruction, we would live happily ever after, in Paradise.
While we traveled to Winnipeg, Dad reminded us about the message we could anticipate hearing, "You know, we will be learning more about the paradise and how we could get to live there. But first, we will have to survive Armageddon. Everyone wicked is going to be destroyed. There will be dead bodies spread from one end of the earth to another. We will have to clean it up. Then we would live in paradise."
I became frightened. I didn't know how to clean up dead bodies and I didn't want to do that kind of work.
Daddy continued, "That's why if we are good workers now, before Armageddon, God can use us afterwards, to help make the paradise. So, when I ask you to do something, remember that God is watching to see how obedient you are. If you are obedient, you will get to live in paradise."
~ Excerpt from "Phoenix of Faith"
Death at Armageddon at the hands of god is a real teaching of the Jehovah's Witnesses religion. As a child, it terrorized me.
Now, as an adult, I realize that if god really loved people he wouldn't threaten them with death for disobedience, in the same fashion as our fleshly fathers, as this example testifies. Parents would do well to appreciate that terrifying your children into submission are not healthy teaching moments. In fact, the above example was frightening and abusive.
It wasn't just my father that taught this. It is in the Jehovah's Witnesses publications and this teaching is also spoken verbally from their Kingdom Hall platforms.
Visit "Phoenix of Faith" to learn more about the author's memoir.