Many Jehovah’s Witnesses sincerely believe that it is a gross sin to accept a blood transfusion, since the Bible states that we must “abstain from blood.” (Acts 15:29) It is quite understandable that many are confused by the position taken by the Watchtower Society (WTS) with respect to the various blood components or blood products like albumin, erythropoietins, vaccines, immunoglobulins, and hemophiliac treatments. It does not seem possible to explain why it is a violation of God’s law to accept plasma, platelets, red and white cells when all the fractions of these are permitted by the WTS. These contradictions have caused a number of elders and Hospital Liaison Committee Members to quietly resign.
The Watchtower and Jehovah’s Witnesses in general still cling to the “no blood” mantra. As you will see in this section, that claim is extraordinarily dishonest. The Watchtower has approved the use of all red cell, white cell, platelet and plasma derivatives. The list of blood products Jehovah’s Witnesses can choose to use in good conscience has grown larger and larger over the last three decades. If fact, the list has become so extensive, it’s easier to say what they don’t permit:
- Whole Blood
- Red Cells
- White Cells
The “No Blood Card” that Jehovah’s Witnesses carry with them has experienced very significant changes over the years, as you will see in this article. It was simply referred to as “the blood card” for many decades, then came to be called “the Advanced Medical Directive”. The last major change occurred in 2004, when it was combined with a Durable Power of Attorney specific to each state and is at times referred to as the “DPA”.
The first example shown is one of the older versions of the blood card that Witnesses carried back in the 1960’s. You will note its clear and uncompromising statement about the use of blood. It says specifically “I demand that blood, in any way, shape or form, is NOT to be fed into my body…”
What follows is a collection of quotes from Watchtower Society literature.This information will help you understand the development of the blood doctrine, and document the many changes in policy through the years.
Quotes are presented in chronological order. Our editorial comments are in red.
What follows is a collection of quotes from Watchtower Society literature on the subject of albumin. Watchtower writers and representatives are fond of saying that they have “commented consistently” on albumin and other blood fractions. Their published statements clearly prove otherwise as you will see below. This information will help researchers understand the development of the blood doctrine, and document the many changes in policy through the years. Quotes are presented in chronological order. Our editorial comments are in red.
Albumin is wrong – it’s use is banned by scripture
Blood serum is the clear fluid that remains after the cellular components (red cells, white cells, platelets, clotting factors and fibrinogen are removed. It includes all proteins not used in the clotting process.
What follows is a collection of quotes from Watchtower Society literature. This information will help researchers understand the historical development of the Watchtower Society’s policy on blood serums and document the many changes in policy through the years.