Proving Mormonism is Christian

Mormons seeking to prove that Latter-day Saints (and the LDS Church) are Christian often resort to a certain apologetic argument that is woefully lacking in substance; nevertheless it continues to be bandied about with reckless abandon. LDS Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley uses this argument, and it is unendingly repeated by Mormons in manifold venues. Here it is, from a recent letter-to-the-editor in a Long Beach, California paper:

“It is ironic that many state that ‘Mormons are not Christian,’ when the name of the church is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

Surely there are better ways to defend the nature of the LDS Church.

RosesWilliam Shakespeare put these words into the mouth of Juliet: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Juliet told Romeo that what something is called does not necessarily correspond to what something actually is.

Some real-life examples for the sake of illustration:

Mormon Coffee is neither Mormon nor a beverage.
• Mitt Romney is not, in reality, something to be worn on the hand.
• A Ford Taurus is not a constellation comprised of star clusters including the Hyades and the Pleiades.
• Long Island Iced Tea contains vodka, tequila, rum, gin and triple sec; but, in fact, it is not, nor does it contain, tea.
• Los Angeles, often called the City of Angels, has a population of approximately 4 million people; it is not truly populated by celestial beings.
• The World Church of Jesus is Satan, founded in Detroit, Michigan in 1993 by Thayalan Reddy, is not a Christian church despite the name of Jesus in its title.

Mormon Fundamentalist groups offend the LDS Church by calling themselves “Mormons.” The LDS Church clarified in a commentary on its web site:

“Polygamist groups in Utah, Arizona or Texas have nothing whatsoever to do with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. To refer to them as ‘Mormon’ is inaccurate.

“Mormon is a common name for a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints…

“When referring to people or organizations that practice polygamy, terms such as those given in the first paragraph above are incorrect. The Associated Press Stylebook notes: ‘The term Mormon is not properly applied to the other … churches that resulted from the split after (Joseph) Smith’s death.'”

The LDS Church recognizes that Mormon Fundamentalists are not actually Mormons even though they are called by that name.

So let’s put this silly “We’re Christians because our Church is called The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints” argument to rest. Instead, let’s talk about who Jesus Christ is and what He has done for us.

About Sharon Lindbloom

Sharon surrendered her life to the Lord Jesus Christ in 1979. Deeply passionate about Truth, Sharon loves serving as a full-time volunteer research associate with Mormonism Research Ministry. Sharon and her husband live in Minnesota.
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97 Responses to Proving Mormonism is Christian

  1. Arthur Sido says:

    Danielle,

    We left together, but it was mostly my decision. My wife left because I did, but it was hard on her because she was so comfortable in mormonism. I also remember drinking my first cup of coffee and how liberating it was! It was right before we were going to have our oldest child baptized, and when that time came it was sudden and complete. We mostly felt adrift, our lives were so controlled by being mormons that we were unsure what to do. Luckily we got plugged into a Bible believing church very quickly and came to know the Christ of the Bible. It was only in His sovereignity that we were saved, I sure wasn’t looking to get out of mormonism. Praise God, He came looking for me.

  2. Jacob5 says:

    But, if it is possible, I would like to know why my previous two postings were deleted. I will make no assumptions, so I will wait for the answer from the moderator of this blog.

    [Jacob5, we appreciate your contributions to the discussions on Mormon Coffee. However, the 2 comments you are asking about were automatically flagged for moderation by our system because they included multiple links (6). Upon review, we determined that the comments did not conform to our policy, which states in part, “Unless permission is otherwise granted by a moderator, links to Mormon apologetic material must be accompanied by a satisfactory summary (in your own words) of the key arguments made.” You can view our comment policy here.]

  3. Jacob5 says:

    Okay, fair enough. However for my defense, I felt I had to place such links in order to back up my statements. I also do believe that I gave a satisfactory summary (in my own words). Please define “satisfactory” and explain how my summary was not so. Now if you say that I can post the same statements without the links, then I can do that, but I want it to be shown on the record that links to my answers were given, and are of an authoritative source. If you believe that that is not accurate then I submit my statement above to Lautensack if he would still care to have the answer.

  4. Danielle says:

    Hi,

    Hi Arthur!!! I am happy for you that your wife and you stayed together during such a strange situation. And then together you found a church that was good for the both of you. COOL!!!

    Mike,
    I am sorry that you are going through all of the issues that come with finding out that the “true church” has way to many issues. It is hard. You can also email me direct. [email protected]

    Amanda… Hi.
    I am LDS. I am genuinely interested in what other LDS people have to say. I know what we believe.. I love the LDS people and the church.
    I also think I know what I don’t believe. (for example: That God is somewhere around something called Kolob.)
    And there are other things that just don’t make sense. I don’t feel that I am gossiping..I just want others to talk with me about all of it. It is a very serious and important issue for me.

    Of course at this point I don’t think I would be considered a loyel LDS member. I just don’t have feelings that make me want to stay in the church as an active member. If the church could iron out the wrinkles then I will be more the happy to be totally active. But they can’t.

    I believe that the best thing I can do for my relationship with God is to always search. Keep looking (in the Bible)…… he will always show me the way. Now if we trap ourselves into thinking that a man named Joseph Smith is the only way to God then we are truly off the path that Jesus was talking about in the Bible.

    If this is NOT what the bible teaches then someone please let me know. If there is something else, besides prayer, that I should be doing…. then I for sure want to know. :)!!

    I hope everyone is having a wonderful evening. This Mormon Coffee is such a cool place to hang out!!!

    Danielle

  5. Arthur Sido says:

    Danielle,

    I would recommend focusing on reading the Bible, as well as chekcing into other churches. I was really surprised at what great people went to Christian churches and how welcoming they were. As you read the Bible, ponder how it addresses the nature of God and the nature of man, and then think how you are taught about those two issues in mormonism. When all is said and done, that is where the difference is, who is God and who is man.

  6. Danielle says:

    Thank you Arthur!! I will do that.
    Have a wonderful day.
    Danielle

  7. falcon says:

    Arthur,
    I couldn’t let your post go by without commenting on it. Your point regarding focusing on the nature of God and the nature of man was spot on. What someone believes regarding this is really bottom-line in my opinion. If we don’t get that right everything else that follows will be off. It is this doctrine that I think sets Mormonism a part from the Christian family. Also, once someone accepts Joseph Smith as a prophet who got his revelations from God, they will believe anything that follows including that god was once a man who became a god and that pathway is open to you too. The hook, that closes the deal, is the emotional feeling that is suppose to comfirm the truth of the BoM. Pretty tough to overcome emotion with logic. I really like hearing about the light bulb experience you exMormons have had. That is, when the point came that the holes begin to appear in the Mormon curtin for you folks. But again, understanding the nature of God and man is an excellent starting point.

  8. Danielle says:

    Falcon,

    Sometimes I would talk to one of my Christian friends about God and stuff. Thinking they were just like me. Just to hear.. “OH that is not what the bible says” or “that is not what God is about”. It would always throw me off (it sort of made me feel out of place). For so long I had been told I was Christian like my friends outside the church. But I wasn’t….. My belief system did not even come close to what my Christian friends believed. It was hard to make sense of it all.

    Danielle

  9. Jacob5 says:

    Danielle,
    If I may, and please accept this in the spirit for which I give.
    First, if you may have felt in confusion or if any member may have treated you with anything less then dignity or respect during your transition, I am very sorry. In many churches there are people who take a very strong stance against those who chose to leave it. If they do such, they forget the true heart of why we are down here.
    I think the most wonderful thing of it all is that every man, women, and child on this planet has choice. Beyond all religion and faith, choice. I believe the reason that we don’t have God’s direct influence (meaning we do not see him) is that he wants us to show our faith. Mankind may argue over which faith is true, but the fact still remains that God gave us a choice of what we believe in. This is also why there is not always an imediate punishment for what we may do wrong as well.
    I have made my choice as to my faith, even though there are those who may want me to place my faith in another course. But I did not always have this personal faith. As a child, I knew nothing. I was born to a father who was a convert, and a mother who was from a long line that even has a small connection to a current apostle and a past prophet. When I was a child I had only their words of teaching. Just as all children I had no other faith but the trust of my parents’ words. Now, some carry this faith with them throughout their whole lives, but I feel they may greatly err. Because that faith is mainly based on the words of another. There must truly be a personal conversion. This is not simply when someone joins with a particular faith. This is when, through personally seeking the truth, a person converts from meerly following the words of another to having their own faith.

  10. Jacob5 says:

    Now, does this mean that I am telling you that if you don’t return to our faith you will be lost, no. I am saying that whatever path you find, you should eventually find that conversion to the faith.
    When we simply just rely on the words of men, then quite simply the words of another man may use words to again make you turn to his direction.
    I believe that when we are to come before God with our final judgement, it will not be sufficient to say that we have faith because another person told us, but what we truly know to be true.
    If we look to the example of Paul, formerly named Saul, we see what a true conversion is. Saul had a faith that what he was taught was true. He even went as far as to persecute and arrest christians. But it was when he received his visitation from Christ that we was truly converted to his faith. Now, I don’t know who here has had any personal visitations from Christ, but Pauls conversion was so thurough that he spent the rest of his life preaching what he blieved in, even to the very end.
    I have have been converted to my faith. I believe in my faith so much that even if people may point out the “inconsistancies” in my church or the words of past or present leaders that would seem to go against my beliefs I still know, beyond any words of men, that my faith is true. My knowledge comes from my faith, my faith doesn’t come from my knowledge. Men’s knowledge has been proven to fail, but my faith in God is unerring.
    Danielle, seek your faith, and when you find it, find your conversion, so that you may come before God and when he asks you about your faith, you will be able to say, “It is because You have told me.”
    Good luck

  11. falcon says:

    Danielle,
    That’s the challenge, when you see that there is a difference in doctrine and/or core beliefs between what your Christian friends profess and what you profess(ed) as a Mormon. At that point you have to do the old “compare and contrast” exercise as far as doctrine is concerned. There are several reliable web sites that place the basic doctrines side by side so a person can see the difference. There is a point, I think, where a person has to confront the question: “Did Joseph Smith get his doctrine through a revelation from God?” What Joseph Smith said, basically, was that God told him that the traditional Christian Church was wrong. I dismiss Joseph Smith as a prophet due to his claim that he now had the real truth and the Church was in darkness until he came along. It’s pretty easy for me to dismiss him as a false prophet based on that claim alone. There are just too many tallies in the negative column to come to any other conclusion.

  12. Jacob5 says:

    And Stephen was challenged all the same when he came before the Sanhedrin as he taught contrary to the religious body at that time.

  13. Arthur Sido says:

    Jacob, the difference is that Stephen was standing up for the Gospel of Jesus Christ against those who would slander and condemn it. Smith was not defending the Gospel, he was creating a contrary gospel that was not a Gospel at all.

    Much of what you are saying to Danielle sounds very familiar. It was always something else, [filtered profanity or slur] materials, personal sin, offense given by church member. All sorts of reasons why one would leave mormonism except the one that was the true reason. God’s Word demonstrated to me that mormonism is not the restored Gospel and is not the truth. When we left we got unmarked mail urging us to stay, phone calls from the bishop to my wife when he knew I was at work. Being shunned by out former mormon friends. But all of the shunning and pain was worth it to come to a true knowledge of Jesus Christ.

  14. falcon says:

    You know Jacob5, you’re too much. So now you’re comparing Stephen and the Jews with Joseph Smith and the Christian Church. It amazes me where you Mormons come up with this stuff. So if someone is a Mormon and then challenges the Mormon hierarchy, teachings and doctrines, you have to believe them because of the example of Stephen and the Sanhedrin. Unbelievable logic you folks practice. I guess you have to be able to think Mormon. Unreal. I don’t know if I should laugh or cry.

  15. amanda says:

    Arthur, you said to Jacob5,

    “Much of what you are saying to Danielle sounds very familiar. It was always something else, [filtered profanity or slur] materials, personal sin, offense given by church member. All sorts of reasons why one would leave mormonism except the one that was the true reason.”

    I feel this argument you are using to be very convenient as well. One could also use this same logic to validate converts to the church. Maybe they join for “true reasons”. They certainly don’t join because it’s the popular thing to do. In fact, there are more converts every year to the church than those who leave it. I don’t know why they leave, it’s irrelevant to the truthfulness of the gospel, however.

    I pray for Danielle in her sincere desire for truth. She will find it if she submits her will to the Father, whatever His will may be.

  16. amanda says:

    Falcon,

    That comment you made to Jacob5 is precisely the example of rudeness and disrespect many evangelicals display toward Mormons on this site (as discussed earlier). We validate our beliefs with bible stories just the same as you do yours. It would be a double standard on your behalf to expect us to do anything different. Evangelicals don’t own the bible and the interpretation thereof. Curb your pride a little. If you truly feel Jacob is misled in his beliefs, act like a true Christian and abstain from taunting and scoffing. Taunting and Scoffing however, to use bible stories, was a tactic of the Jews and the Romans who belittled what the Savior taught. We should all be careful…just when someone thinks they have it all figured out, the Lord humbles them, and hopefully they realize, even if they are on the right side of the religious line, they have much to learn.

  17. Danielle says:

    Good Evening!!

    Some people worry a lot about this. I am not worried at all about being in the wrong church (really it is just a building). I believe God knows my heart and that all I want to do is be closer to him. He loves me……. so he gets me. 🙂 He knows I will just keep trying to figure it out; because he is important to me.

    I believe he knows that the LDS people and Christians all want him in their lives. They all love him deeply. They are all trying so hard to show him love and respect. Everyone is trying to be close to him, trying to figure it all out.

    The issue is the differences in how we do it. I believe that God is not ignorant about the way we feel. He knows our hearts.

    I have found that the LDS church is not for me. Yet……. I feel that the people are wonderful people. The church is a wonderful place. I just want something different. I believe in something different.

    Mormons always say “as far as it was translated correctly”. That means to me that it should stand up under scrutiny. Yet the BoM does not. It does not translate history correctly and it is updated all the time. Someone show me something that is true about the people in the BoM. I have not seen anything that shows me that.

    Yet the bible does every time!! It has been translated by so many people and all agree in the translation.

    The BoM has nothing……….. Nothing to show it is accurate.

    Danielle

  18. falcon says:

    Well it looks like the Falcon has hit a nerve again. Here’s my point: It is my opinion that there is a distinct, maybe even stereotypical, thinking process, logic within Mormonism. That logic (manner of thinking) is used to conclude “……therefore the church is true”. I admit, it sets me off. So when my friend Jacob5 exibited that form of thinking, I challenged it. If you felt attacked Jacob5, I apoligize. At least I didn’t put a smiley face on my comment. From my vantage point, the Mormon attempt to prove the veracity of their claims (i.e. we’re Christians too etc.) takes on a tortured form of mental gymnastics. It exasperates me. Makes me sit here with my mouth agape. So the example of Stephen defending the Faith before the Jewish Council being used as proof of Joseph Smith’s credentials as a prophet of God was abit of a stretch….in my opinion.

  19. Jacob5 says:

    Don’t worry Falcon. I didn’t feel attacked. I once walked through a swarm of pastors, or Moksa’s in Korean, during my mission. Talk about hair raising. They immediately pounced. Yet I still didn’t feel attacked.
    Your description is interesting however about our “manner of thinking”. When our testimonies and our faith in our church is described as emotional or what-have-you, I hope you understand that many people who yet do not believe in christianity (I know you may feel we don’t believe in it either but bear with me) use this same way of telling us all that we are foolish. Because faith is not having a perfect knowledge. The only way of having that perfect knowledge, even beyond studying all kinds of books, is to have actually witnessed all the events in the scriptures, and to have met the principle characters themselves. To that I submit that I don’t know. So, how do we truly back up our faith, by simply throughing scriptures around at each other hoping to disprove each other? No, we must go to the source of what is written. And even then, we have to place our faith upon what the spirit tells us. If either one of us is so perfect in our knowledge, then why is there this discussion?
    So, as Christ said, the spirit of contention is not of him, and as I know I have contributed to the contention of this website, I apologize. For how can I say that I have faith in Christ and continue in this way.
    I hope you all have luck in your journeys. I think I will bow out for the sake of harmony.
    To all you Latter-day Saints out there, have a good sunday, I can’t wait to get into the new study topics for this year.

  20. Arthur Sido says:

    Amanda,

    “In fact, there are more converts every year to the church than those who leave it.” You sure about that? That is a pretty brazen statement. I was a membership clerk back in the day and more than half of the names on the “membership” roles never darkened the doors of a mormon church, and many were openly hostile. You are right that popularity is not a sign of truth, but neither is sincerity or warm fuzzies in the bosom. Danielle is exactly right, there is nothing that validates the truth of the book of Mormon. You can visit the Holy Land, go to places named, see the river where Christ was baptized but there is no sign of any of the BoM locations.

    Danielle, continue to seek His will in your life, and He will lead you in His paths. Even the most lost person can be saved, a fact to which I serve as a living testament.

  21. Danielle says:

    Falcon said:
    “At least I didn’t put a smiley face on my comment”.
    Falcon I hope you were not making fun of me. I was just trying to have some fun when I posted the smiley face. I was trying to be nice.

    🙂 (just for you Falcon)

    Arthur!! Good evening
    Thank you so much for your support. I am doing my best to stay on the best path. I know what you mean about being lost. It is strange to me that so many of my friends and family are so relieved that I found this stuff out about the LDS church. Anyway….. have a wonderful evening.

    Danielle

  22. falcon says:

    Danielle,
    No that wasn’t about you. Your smiley icons are always appropriate to your remarks. I get a little confused sometimes when posters’ icons don’t match their comments. A “grrrr” icon, if there is such a thing, would often times be a better match to the comments. So, keep on smiling, your joy is appreciated.

  23. amanda says:

    Arthur Sido,

    Yes, pretty sure of that…it can be seen by sheer church growth. You know, more people this year than there were last year ;). If they adamantly disagree with its’ precepts, they would have their name removed from church records…and if Danielle believes what she is saying, I suppose she might do the same thing.

    I don’t remember referring to my testimony as a “fuzzy warm” Barney and Friends feeling…but ok. I can’t control how you chose to characterize the promptings of the Holy Ghost. However, I don’t believe you would appreciate anyone marginalizing your personal convictions the way you just did mine.

    Danielle,

    You feel the church isn’t for you. Hey, I believe it is God’s plan to teach us correct principles and let us govern ourselves. So I won’t begrudge you the opportunity to govern your life the way you chose- for it is you who will experience the fruits (consequences) of this decision, and answer for it at the last day. So all the best to you. I will challenge some of your logic however:

    You honestly think that EVERY bible scholar validates the bible as the word of God? I suggest that if you are going to use “existential evidence” (as Leutensack suggests) to prove the validity of the bible that you research ALL perspectives in this regard. Start with “Misquoting Jesus” by Bart D. Ehrman. He use to consider himself an evangelical, actually decided to study the bible in Greek and Latin by learning the languages, and came to a VERY different conclusion than what you are posturing. I seriously laugh out loud whenever I hear evangelicals ignorantly discussing history as if it favors the early church…Early Christians were the most confused and heretical bunch that history has every seen! Hence an apostasy. No true leadership after apostles died.

    Its’ interesting when ev’s discuss “evidence”…as if they are learned scholars in ALL of the evidence. They pick and chose their evidence based on their personal BELIEFS.

  24. falcon says:

    Amanda,
    Not to put words in your mouth, but you seem to be saying that the Bible isn’t accurate, dependable or what? It wouldn’t take me long to come-up with a list of authors and books that rip the Bible. It’s been great sport for centuries. The only way the Joseph Smith story works, is to discredit the Christian Church and to diminish the veracity of the Bible. If you want to talk about a discredited book, try the BoM. There’s zero evidence that it is an accurate history. Then move on to basic Mormon doctrine. Where does it come from? I’d like to know where the Mormon doctrine of the nature of man and God comes from.

    Hay Danielle,
    Stay with putting your faith in the God of the Bible and you’ll be OK. I thought Amanda’s subtle guilt trip statement was pretty much standard Mormon fear mongering to those who leave the club.

  25. Lautensack says:

    Amanda,
    Please point to the heretics of the early Church according to Orthodox Christian beliefs not Modern or Historical Mormon beliefs. Please site their “heresy” and please don’t use people deemed heretics by the Church for any of the following reasons: Docetism, Gnosticism, Nicolaitanism, Monarchianism, Unitarianism, Tritheism, Montanism, Arianism, Pelagianism, Nestorianism, Eutychianism, and Monophysitism.

    Also I never suggested that “existential evidence” could prove the Bible. A personal testimony cannot prove to anyone else the truthfulness of the Bible. I believe you are misquoting and misunderstanding me when I say your testimony is an existential experience but the Bible has other evidence in favor of it where other “works of scripture” such as the Qu’ran and The Book of Mormon do not.

    Danielle,
    I also suggest you read scholars from all points of view on the matter of the Bible and its inerrency, and wish our LDS friends would do the same with their “scriptures.” Pick up “Misquoting Jesus” by Bart D. Ehrman but I will also suggest “The Case for the Real Jesus” by Lee Strobel, Misquoting Jesus was interesting in light of Challenge #2 of Strobel’s book. Well time to go snow blow.

    Lautensack

  26. Ralph says:

    Danielle, I will concur that there is very little historical or archaeological evidence of the Book of Mormon and its events and people, but that does not mean that it is not true. It is a book of faith, much like the Bible, and as mentioned in an earlier post, faith is not a perfect knowledge, it is a hope and belief in something unseen. There is a book I have at hime called “Discovering Lehi” and it is written by a member who went from Jerusalem through the Arabic Peninsula to the Yemen Republic and found that the journey described by Nephi could be factual, including the land of milk and honey at the end of the journey. Most people in Joseph’s day thought of that area as only desert, and most people these days think the same. So there is some possible evidence there of the Book of Mormon being true. Although I think that most people on this site will credit Joseph with a wild imagination and that he just wanted to go against social norms so he wrote about there being a land of milk and honey and by coincidence got it right. But that’s their choice to believe it.
    As for the Bible, there is no historical or archaelogical evidence of any of the events recorded up until King Ahab. Meaning, there is no evidence of Moses, King David, King Solomon, nor their ’empires’. The only mention of a people known as Israel in Egypt is a quick mention of the pharoah totally destroying a mountain tribe called the Israelites. I am a research scientist and most of the ‘big names’ I work with belong to the Skeptics Society, and do not believe in the Bible because there are no evidences. But as I said, the Bible is a book of faith. I believe it is true because of spiritual evidences I have been given.
    All the best with your journey of self “discovery”.

  27. Lautensack says:

    Ralph,
    Please check your sources, there is archaeological evidence in Palestine have dated non-Jewish sources, the Tel Dan being the earliest, mentioning the “House of David” in the 9th century BC, as well as cities, peoples, and places found there were described in detail in the Bible. For example 1-Samuel 13:19-21 records the Israelites relying on the Philistine metal smiths, which is historically accurate, and a “pim” used in the tool-sharpening process. But what this “pim” was/has been a mystery. Recent excavations found that an ancient coin weight called a “pim,” which was used exclusively during the Israelite settlement period, was apparently the payment for the service of sharpening. This is the one of two words translated “file” in verse 21 KJV the other is pĕtsiyrah, meaning charge or price. For those of you wondering a pim is about a third of a shekel. Ralph I suggest you do better research and by that I do not mean simply subscribe to the revisionists postmodern archaeological movement that bares little credibility and cannot think critically. Yes the evidence cannot prove the Bible to be true, but to say there is no evidence is an egregious mistake. There is evidence that supports the Bible however there is no evidence what so ever to support the Book of Mormon, not a coin, not a city, not a sword, not a horse skeleton, nothing.
    My question is why do Mormons who claim to believe the Bible attack it so much and try to disprove it rather than conform to it and what it teaches about God, man, and sin.

    Lautensack

  28. lillym says:

    Did anyone here see the recent article out of Israel, where archaeologists uncovered a sophisticated beehive operation? They dated it much earlier than anyone had previously thought honey-making operations to exist there…I’ll have to see if there’s a link but I read it in my newspaper.

    Anyway, point being that the “milk and honey” was quite literal. You’d think there would be some shred of evidence like that to support the BoM.

  29. Rick B says:

    lillym said

    Anyway, point being that the “milk and honey” was quite literal. You’d think there would be some shred of evidence like that to support the BoM.

    We have the dead sea scroll’s to prove the Bible but no golden plates, we have no reformed egyption and best we can tell it has never existed, except in the mind of JS. We have plenty of evidence to prove the Bible, yet zero evidence to prove the BoM. Yet the LDS do not care, they claim, believe in faith, I have faith along with evidence, The LDS have blind faith with no evidence and many serious problems. Rick b

  30. falcon says:

    Well I looked up a couple of reviews on the book “Misquoting Jesus”. Looks like an interesting book. It seems the goal of the author was to prove that the Bible was not inspired by God. Now why would a Mormon get all excited about that? Anyway these reviews are point by point and quite lengthy. I think they do a pretty good job of debunking several of the authors claims. My advice to anyone is to check some of this stuff out before jumping on the bandwagon. Also, I’m in agreement that before people start making archelogical claims one way or another regarding the Bible, they need to find some reliable sources. My guess is that there are a lot of religious urban legends that are taken at face value and passed around. So after the apostles there were all these heretics running around that led the Church into apostasy. Please prove that! Must have been a ton of them to overwhelm the entire Body of Believers. We’re dealing with a warehouse full of misinformation here.

  31. Danielle says:

    Thank you for your support everyone. I will definitely keep with the bible. It is the most honest book I have. The cool thing is that Christians don’t seem to feel a need to condemn me for trying to figure it out.

    I find it interesting to that an LDS person has to say this:

    “So I won’t begrudge you the opportunity to govern your life the way you chose- for it is you who will experience the fruits (consequences) of this decision, and answer for it at the last day.

    Was it suppose to scare me or what? Amanda it did not work. I am only worried about trying desperately to follow a church that has members that would say this to me. Rather then to help me.

    Have a good evening everyone!!! (Falcon thanks for clearning up the smiley thing. )

    Danielle

  32. amanda says:

    Leu,

    I can’t use examples of the very groups that prove my point??? (That’s like asking me to give you examples of people who believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God but I can’t use any of its’ witnesses) Are these groups somehow just side notes on the pages of history?

    Basically after the apostles died, there were a bunch of people who loved Christ and attempted to follow him…but eventually they all became, ironically, a form of heresy (apostasy). I was referring to the confusion of early Christianity, of course I will use every group that claimed to be orthodox and later were deemed heretical for political, or perhaps even good reasons– because it proves that point. And questions those groups who maintained a position of “orthodox” what authority they truly have and what ACTUAL scripture or documentation they have to back it up other than their own interpretations of these copies of copies of scripture. No one has any originals (and they are so critical of the BoM not having the original plates, as if that would make any difference on matters of faith).

    Christ organized His church and his apostles–when He was crucified and they died, there is no proof that this organization continued-there is only proof to suggest that many went their separate ways and there was mass confusion (refer to the many tractates that flew back and forth in Christian society/circles as well in order to attempt to control heresy). And then several centuries later, they (apostolic creed and Nicene creed) attempted to reconstruct as best they could what they knew of Christ’s teachings based on copies of copies of copies of copies they had of those teachings. Hence the need for a restoration by the TRUE author, and the comment I made about Christ’s restoration (Book of Mormon being one of those fundamental elements) giving needed context to the bible.

  33. amanda says:

    Danielle,

    So, I was trying to scare you because I said that I wouldn’t deny you your right to act on your own conscience? I don’t think you understood what I was trying to say. It shouldn’t scare you if the decision you are making is the decision God would have you make. I thought that was a very fair response, not only to your beliefs but to mine.

    Somehow my attempts at being diplomatic failed on you. So no, I couldn’t in theory support your decision because it would undermine my own decision…however, I support your responsibility to make it because you answer for yourself. I don’t answer for you at the last day so it doesn’t matter much what I think about your decision. Only God’s opinion matters, and only you are in a position to decide for yourself what God would have you do.

    I do believe it is my responsibility to love you, regardless of your decision.

  34. amanda says:

    Falcon,

    [Snarky comments removed.]

    You do reiterate my point quite well, however. Yes, you essentially validated the BoM based on the points I have been making about the bible. There are naysayers on both accounts, but our belief is not driven by anything other than our faith- nor should it be. I do believe the bible to be the word of God- the purpose in pointing out nay saying belief of the bible is to question evangelical position that it is somehow free of scrutiny…the same scrutiny they place on the Book of Mormon.

    As far as my comments directed at Danielle, that’s between us, and I’d prefer that you resisted the temptation to pick Danielle’s battles for her.

    [More snarky comments removed. Additionally, this is a public forum; if you wish for a private discussion, please it carry on via email ]

  35. Lautensack says:

    Amanda, I believe you were speaking to me when you typed Leu so I will respond as such. Why would I allow you to use groups that were never orthodox, never accepted by the Church, and who’s teachings were condemned when brought up. Allow me to broaden the question who were the Heretics? Clement of Rome? Ignatius? Ireneaus? Athenagoras? Justin Martyr? Polycarp? Tertullian? Dionysius? Athanasius? Augustine? Gregory of Nazianzus? Gregory of Nyssa? St. Patrick? All of these men died prior to 500AD. Many prior to or around the beginning of the 3rd century. Some even died in the late first and early second century. Therefore while they may not have had the “originals” they surly had good copies.
    Now as to the argument of “copies of copies of copies of copies” (I think I have enough copies there) therefore them being wrong did you know that we not only have over 24,000 manuscripts with less than 95% difference among them and of this 5% difference only 1% is “substantial” and none of the differences affect key doctrines. Also the New Testament was transmitted so fast and so wide that to make wholesale changes to it would have been impossible because if the manuscripts in Ireland read something completely different than the rest we can see someone was trying to make changes, unlike say the Qu’ran where all the copies were gathered and those not fitting the “correct” translation were burned, thus wholesale changes were possible at that point. We also have over 86,000 quotes from the New Testament by the early church fathers and lectionaries written prior to 200AD. In fact all but 11 verses can of the New Testament can be reconstructed from those quotes.
    Concerning the “Golden Plates of the Book of Mormon” I would settle for a manuscript written in the original language, but that will never happen. Yes you can attack the Bible on the basis that we do not have the autographa, but you lack even a manuscript, thus the validity of your argument falls short.
    Lautensack

  36. Arthur Sido says:

    Amanda, those kind of comments are indeed designed as a dire warning for leaving the mormon church. When I left, the bishop called my wife to try to discuss with her the consequences of leaving mormonism. We got an anonymous letter with what can best be described as an “anti-[filtered profanity or slur]” book designed to scare those who would leave by condemning them to outer darkness. Don’t fear the opinions of men, but fear the Lord and in that you will find wisdom. There were two things that were spiritually liberating when we left, drinking my first cup of coffee and getting the letter from Salt Lake revoking our mormon baptism and temple “blessings”.

  37. falcon says:

    Amanda,
    [Comment trimmed.] Would you please stick to the substance of the arguments and refrain from your rather immature personal attacks.

    [More trimming. Let’s play nice, kids.]

  38. Jacob5 says:

    I have two questions. First, about the purity of Bible. In the Book of Deuteronomy chapter 14 Moses gives a list of birds (v. 7) and among the list is mentions “bats”. So, either one of two things are true, either Moses made a falsehood or he was mistranslated. In which case you can make one of three choices to proceed with.
    1. Reject Moses and the Bible, and write anti-Biblical essays to lead as many people as possible away from Bible.
    2. Rejoice that God has now revealed more complete information, through the medium of science, that can help us better understand details of our world and of the Biblical record.
    3. Demand that secular science no longer be taught in schools, since we know from the Bible that bats are birds. End of story.
    I got this from this web page in case anyone cares to see.
    http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/DNA.shtml
    It is interesting that since things don’t line up exactly with LDS scriptures, according to some, it is deemed completely false. Members of the LDS faith have learned that there are some inconsistencees in the Bible, yet we are still able to find out the understanding of the scriptures, how you may ask, by our other scriptures. The New Testament discusses baptism, yet it has for some reason been deemed an unnecessary ordinance. How do LDS understand its importance, through the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and modern prophets. The New Testament talks about following commandments, yet the importance of that practice is pushed to the wayside. Again LDS members learn from other scriptures that it is important. Some of what we deem to be the basic principles are brought into ambiquity by those who rely solely on the Bible. And if anyone cares to know the deep etymology of “testament” it is “third person, disinterested witness”, got from the online etymology dictionary. A member of our church found this out when he was wondering why our leaders chose, “Another Testament of Jesus Christ” as the subtitle.

  39. Jacob5 says:

    The second is, is drinking coffee a sort of right of passage for those who chose to leave our church? I noticed a few people said that. I know of a few who have done that without leaving the church.
    Sorry, one more question. For those EV’s out there I was wondering what your position is of those who may leave your circle to become and LDS and they eventually die in that faith. What is the state of their soul.
    As for members of our faith, we state that everyone will get to hear the complete gospel whether in this life or the next, and they will get the opportunity to accept it or not. And then, even for those who do not accept it, they still get to live in a state of rest from the worries of life after the judgement.

  40. mikeb says:

    Jacob The Bible says in Hebrews 9:27 “And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment”.  There is no second chance. I think this is why we as Bible believing Christians are trying to share this gospel message of the true Christ. If you read Hebrews chapter 9 it states Christ is our high priest, that he appears before God for us. That there is a new covenant through Christ and not of dead works.  We’re really discussing the matter of salvation. The LDS teach that you can lose your salvation by leaving the church but, with Jesus Christ of the Bible you can not lose it by things that we do. Just like there is nothing we can do to gain our salvation. If a person truly accepts Christ as their savior and God knows their heart then their salvation is secure.  I hope you look at Jesus as the Bible shows him…look at the differences and ask God to reveal the truth to you. Isn’t that what we all want anyway?

  41. Danielle says:

    Jacob…

    I think that drinking coffee when I left the church was a way of saying “I can make my own decisions”. I also know a lot of LDS that drink stuff they shouldn’t. But for me…… I just wanted to be me. Not some robot. I hope that makes sense.

    Again Amanda,

    This is what you said to me:
    “govern your life the way you chose- for it is you who will experience the fruits (consequences) of this decision, and answer for it at the last day”
    then you said to me:
    “I don’t think you understood what I was trying to say”

    I did totally understand what you said.

    Hello everyone!! Good evening.

    The most important thing is to know God. How can you know God if you are reading from a book that does not even know the God of the Holy Bible? It does not make sense.

    Danielle

  42. Jacob5 says:

    Well, Danielle, thanks for the heads up. I was wondering if it was kind of a trend.
    I can understand how you may feel about the control situation. I looked many times at the ideas I was presenting to people who were investigating our church. We were telling them that in order to become a faithful member they had to attend meetings for at least three hours every Sunday (I say at least, because I have spent nearly the whole day including leadership meetings, don’t even get me started on that one). If they smoke or drink alcohol, tea, or coffee, they must quite. If there were those in relationships with others that were not deemed appropriate, they should get out of that. They should pay 10% of their income to the church as well as make donations for other charitable programs (the latter part is not necessarily set as important as tithing itself). And that, for the most part is the bare minimum, when you add in all the commandments we are to follow, it might even say it is unbearable. Mind you I do not say this sarcastically.
    But beyond all that, I also find the level of control to be a bare minimum. Of course the leaders are concerned for members of our church. I cannot speak of every individual leader of our church, but I would think in general that they do care about the members, and the may feel that they should try their best to maintain the activity of that member is well. Aside from that, unless you are under the direct supervision of your leaders as well, I don’t feel there is any degree of control that is alluded to. I find to have a great deal of liberty in my life as far as my choices are concerned.
    I think that Morgan Freeman said it best “I only have to stay black and die.” (paraphrasing obviously) We don’t have to do anything. Have-to’s only come into play when we want something. If you want money, you have to do something for it. If you want to be a lawyer, you have to study the proper courses and take a test.

  43. Lautensack says:

    Oh Jacob5, I was wondering when someone would use this argument as it hasn’t been used in a while. I will refer to both the verse you were trying to cite, Deut 14:11-18 and it’s parallel Lev 11:13-19. Now at a simple glance of the KJV one would see that both passages call bats birds, either indirectly as in the Deuteronomy or directly as in the Leviticus passage. Case closed the Bible is a lie, or at least in error right? I hope you don’t mind but I am going to go to the Hebrew being used in these verses, and please note the word translated bird in Deut 14:11 and Lev 11:13 are not the same word, however the word for bat in Deut 14:18 and Lev 11:19 is the same, and does indeed mean bat so forgive me I do not try to make my case that God is indeed speaking about a mammal.
    Now the word for “bird” being used in Deut 14 is tzphur (sade pe vav rosh) meaning little bird, thus perhaps we should throw the entire list out because it mentions many birds which are not little. However if we allow scripture to interpret scripture, fun right, we see this same word used in Deut 4:17, this time translated “fowl” and giving a fowl, a bird, the description of anything with wings that flieth in the air, according to this description a bat clearly fits.
    Now as for Lev 11:13-19 the word for fowls used there is owph (ayan vav pe) and this more clearly includes the bat as a “fowl” (translated bird in many modern translations). This word is also attributed to insects though, as it is the same word being used later in the chapter of this Book when referring to “flying creeping things.” (v 21,23) Thus clearly a bat can be grouped in the “abomination among the fowls,” and “they which ye shall not eat.” And I do not believe I am denying either the Bible or the evidence when I make that statement. Any who point to this to invalidate the Bible know little of the Hebrew language, and understand next to nothing of hermeneutics. Don’t believe me? Look it up in the original languages.
    Lautensack

  44. falcon says:

    Jacob5,
    I know you are meaning your points to be obvious, but it would help if you could conclude them by saying “therefore……..” Your attempts to show inconsistencies in the Bible text suggests to me that you want to conclude that “therefore the BoM is true.” So your reasoning would go; the Bible has inconsistencies in the text so it’s really no better than the BoM which has had at least 4,000 changes to it since it was first published and for which there is no evidence that it is a historically accurate document.

  45. Sharon Lindbloom says:

    We’re closing comments on this thread, folks. We seem to have strayed from the discussion topic about 80 comments ago… 🙂

Comments are closed.