Why Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t use blood transfusions

Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t use blood transfusions, but blood transfusion alternative treatments. Why?

What does the Bible tell us about blood transfusions?

It is very important what the Bible tell us about blood and blood transfusions. Because the Bible is the word of God Almighty. And what we can learn in the Bible is to benefit us. We can read this in the Bible in Isaiah 48:17: "This is what Jehovah (Jehovah is God’s name, according to the Bible) has said, your Repurchaser, the Holy One of Israel: “I, Jehovah, am your God, the One teaching you to benefit [yourself], the One causing you to tread in the way in which you should walk."

The Bible give strict command about blood and blood transfusions in Genesis 9:3-4; Deuteronomy 12:23; Acts 15:19-20, 28-29 and the Bible book of Leviticus 17:10-16. The best is we open our own Bible directly. Or we can read the Scriptures from the Bible about blood and blood transfusion also on this page.

The Bible in Acts 15:19-20 about blood and blood transfusion

We can read in the Bible in Acts 15:19-20: "Hence my decision is not to trouble those from the nations who are turning to God, 20 but to write them to abstain from things polluted by idols and from fornication and from what is strangled and from blood." When the Bible tell us to abstain from blood, it must mean any form of blood. This is why true Christians keep abstaining from blood.

A second Scriptures about blood, blood transfusion in the Greek Scripture of the Bible

A second Scripture in the Bible book of Acts about blood transfusion and blood we can read in the same chapter. The Bible, Acts 15:28-29: “For the holy spirit and we ourselves have favored adding no further burden to YOU, except these necessary things, 29 to keep abstaining from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication. If YOU carefully keep yourselves from these things, YOU will prosper. Good health to YOU!”” Again the Bible speaks about keep abstaining from blood. And we could read “carefully keep yourselves from these things”.

Bible statements about blood starts with the first book of the Bible

Already in the first book of the Bible, in Genesis we can read a clear statement of the Bible about blood. Let us read the Bible in Genesis 9:3-4: “Every moving animal that is alive may serve as food for YOU. As in the case of green vegetation, I do give it all to YOU. 4 Only flesh with its soul—its blood—YOU must not eat.”

The Bible in Leviticus about blood: "any sort of blood"

When we read in Genesis the command not to eat blood, we may ask: “Does this include human blood?” We can read the answer in the Bible book of Leviticus. Let us read the Bible, Leviticus 17:10-16: “‘As for any man of the house of Israel or some alien resident who is residing as an alien in YOUR midst who eats any sort of blood, I shall certainly set my face against the soul that is eating the blood, and I shall indeed cut him off from among his people. 11 For the soul of the flesh is in the blood, and I myself have put it upon the altar for YOU to make atonement for YOUR souls, because it is the blood that makes atonement by the soul [in it]. 12 That is why I have said to the sons of Israel: “No soul of YOU must eat blood and no alien resident who is residing as an alien in YOUR midst should eat blood.” 13 “‘As for any man of the sons of Israel or some alien resident who is residing as an alien in YOUR midst who in hunting catches a wild beast or a fowl that may be eaten, he must in that case pour its blood out and cover it with dust. 14 For the soul of every sort of flesh is its blood by the soul in it. Consequently I said to the sons of Israel: “YOU must not eat the blood of any sort of flesh, because the soul of every sort of flesh is its blood. Anyone eating it will be cut off.” 15 As for any soul that eats a body [already] dead or something torn by a wild beast, whether a native or an alien resident, he must in that case wash his garments and bathe in water and be unclean until the evening; and he must be clean. 16 But if he will not wash them and will not bathe his flesh, he must then answer for his error.’”

“Be firmly resolved not to eat the blood” (The Bible)

When we read in the Bible „Just be firmly resolved not to eat the blood,because the blood is the life, and you must not eat the life with the flesh“ (The Bible, Deuteronomy 12:23), it becomes clear why every follower of Jesus Christ don’t eat blood and keep abstaining from blood.

First Christians obeyed the Bible’s command about blood

The first Christians abstain from blood. Blood from animals and humans. Tertullian (a writer about beliefs of early Christians) stated: “The interdict upon ‘blood’ we shall understand to be (an interdict) much more upon human blood.”—The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. IV, p. 86.

Does the Bible command to abstain from blood transfusions?

“Keep abstaining from… Blood” (The Bible): does it mean blood transfusion?

Keep abstaining from blood: what does it mean?

Consider somebody who is told by a doctor that he must abstain from alcohol. What do you think? If the patient would stop drinking alcohol but had it put directly into his veins, would he be obedient to what the doctor said?

When a patient in a hospital cannot eat through his mouth, he can be fed intravenously. If a person would not eat blood and don’t drink it, but would accept a blood transfusion, would he really obey the Bible commands to “keep abstaining from… Blood”? (The Bible, Acts 15:29).

Blood transfusion alternative treatments instead of blood transfusions

The Bible is a book from a loving heavenly father, God Almighty. The creator of mankind, Jehovah (Jehovah is God’s name according to the Bible). Does the creator of all mankind know what is best for humans? True Christians, Jehovah‘s Witnesses, belief so. Jehovah’s Witnesses are known worldwide for obeying Bible commands. Including the clear instructions of the Bible not to eat blood and to keep abstaining from blood.

Because of the clear commandments of the Bible, God’s word, Jehovah’s Witnesses, true Christians, worldwide don’t eat blood and don’t use blood transfusions.

Blood transfusion alternative treatments without the risks of blood transfusions

Blood transfusion alternative treatments: why?

Because of the risks of blood transfusion you may be interested in blood transfusion alternative treatments. The Canadian Anaesthetists’ Society Journal (January 1975, p. 12) stated: “The risks of blood transfusion are the advantages of plasma substitutes: avoidance of bacterial or viral infection, transfusion reactions and Rh sensitization.”

Examples for blood transfusion alternative treatments

One simple alternative treatment to blood transfusions is saline solution, Ringer solution or dextran. Saline solution, Ringer solution and dextran are plasma volume expanders. And these are available in nearly all modern hospitals. There are many other alternatives for blood transfusions. Normally the combination of such blood transfusion alternatives is the best solution. When a patient don’t want blood transfusions because of the risks of blood transfusions and/or because the Bible commands it.

Does a patient without blood transfusion benefit from better medical treatment?

In the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (June 1, 1968, p. 395) a doctor were writing: “There is no doubt that the situation where you [the surgeon] are operating without the possibility of transfusion tends to improve your surgery. You are a little bit more aggressive in clamping every bleeding vessel.”

Can all types of surgery be performed successfully without blood and with blood transfusion alternatives?

In the New York State Journal of Medicine (October 15, 1972, p. 2527), Dr. Philip Roen were writing: “We have not hesitated to perform any and all indicated surgical procedures in the face of proscribed blood replacement.”

Results with blood transfusion alternative treatments

Millions of Jehovah’s Witnesses obey the commandments of the Bible to keep abstaining from blood" and don’t use blood transfusions. But Jehovah’s Witnesses use blood transfusion alternative treatments. What are the results?

“We became so impressed with the results [from using nonblood plasma expanders] on the Jehovah‘s Witnesses that we started using the procedure on all our heart patients.” (Dr. Denton Cooley, at the Texas Heart Institute, in the San Diego Union, December 27, 1970, p. A-10)

“‘Bloodless’ open-heart surgery, originally developed for adult members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses … now has been safely adapted for use in delicate cardiac procedures in infants and children.” (Cardiovascular News, February 1984, p. 5)