Some of you might wonder why those of us in the countercult ministry keep on keeping on. We persist because:
- we love the Mormon people
- we want our Mormon neighbors to have a warranted assurance of permanent and comprehensive forgiveness and secured eternal life
- we are not of this world. Jesus prepared us (read John 15) for a negative response from those who are of this world
- our God-given consciences ring aloud over the deception that Mormonism promotes
- we are full of joy over fellowship with our ex-Mormon brothers and sisters in Christ
- we know and love our ex-Mormon brothers and sisters in Christ and want more of them
And most importantly:
- we want the God of the Bible to be honored and worshiped and known for who He really is
We are empowered by the Holy Spirit to patiently love even those who do not want to be loved. We will, by God’s grace, press on in some manner or other until we die or until Jesus returns. May we say with John Paton:
“My heart rose up to the Lord Jesus; I saw Him watching all the scene. My peace came back to me like a wave from God. I realized that I was immortal till my Master’s work with me was done.” (>>)
Press on, Christians, and don’t let intimidation or seasons of discouragement or grief stop you from being courageous in Christ. “And, Christian, humble yourself under the gracious hand of God, and as an everlasting, invincible child of God, give yourself to relieve suffering, especially eternal suffering.” (>>)
Grace and peace in Christ, who justifies the ungodly like me by faith apart from works (Romans 4:4-8),
My calling to Mormonism
Hello everyone,Well here is the story of my calling to mormonism. I will give a very brief history leading up to the time to better make sense. I was born in Michigan. My dad moved to the state of maine. I moved to chicago where I meet my wife shelli. She was going to school in river falls Wisconsin, but lived in minnesota.
I moved to minnesota with my brother. When I lived in chicago it was in 92, I just gave my life to Christ. I was not growing nor did I have a church. I moved to minnesota in early 94. My brother found a church but it was very weak, The pastor was clearly a 9-5 pastor. He mostly taught on money or gave salvation messages to the saved every week to the same body. So I did not grow.
I meet JW’S, Satanist’s, and people who are into the health and wealth gospel, I was almost deceived by a Jesus only group. Me and people from my church would go witness out on the streets, we met a couple of guys doing the same thing. Because I was not growing I tried the goofy slain in the spirit churches, but I was way too stubborn to allow them to push me down, and If I did not feel the Lord throwing me down I would not drop. But the guys that were Jesus only almost deceived me. I did not know my word and they sounded so sincere and could answer most of my questions. But through people who cared about me, like my wife and others sharing the truth I ended our time together.
But every time I met a person or cult, I had to ask the pastor how to reply. I knew from when I lived in Maine, there was a rock solid pastor who taught the word of God. Well I am guessing it was like 3 years later I felt the Lord calling us Back to maine. My wife refused, she said, you hate it here in Minnesota and you want to leave. It is not God calling you, it’s your flesh.
Well I simply told her, go or stay, I am going where I believe the Lord is calling me and your going to go or stay here. So we had one of those stupid church nights where they were doing the slain in the spirit, Toronto blessing stuff. Sadly our church was moving in that direction. Anyway we had a guest speaker, and Shelli (my wife) went to get prayer. He told her she needs to listen to me and go where I go.
She grew up here and all her family and friends are here. She did one really stupid thing in here life, and was put on probation by the police. She was told she was not allowed to leave the state for five years with out permission. She said due to this she could not move to Maine, and she had about 6 months left to go. I told her nothing was impossible for God and we are moving.
Here is the best part of all. When I told here were moving and everything that was going on, till the time we went to the department agency we needed to go to, to she about her moving was around 4-5 months. low and behold when we got there they said the government for some reason cleared her and she could move, they did this about 4-5 months ago and never told us. This confirmed to me God spoke to me, she had very mixed emotions. She did not want to leave but knew God spoke. She still tried fighting me.
We moved to Maine, and I lose track of the years. When we moved up there, I learned the gospel under my pastor, and I grew a lot. I confronted some so-called satanists at a Campus Crusade for Christ out reach. It was halloween and Campus Crusade had some type of meeting on halloween. Some people confronted the speaker, so I stood up and confronted them.
Later, I met a pastor who was teaching evolution and got in his face, He repented but seemed to fall back into his old ways a few years later. Then I met some JW’S, but did not get very far with them. Up until this time I never meet a mormon, I have only heard about them. People always said they were a cult. They believed a false Gospel and Jesus. And I was told the Mormons goal in life is to become Gods and have unlimited wives and sex forever. This is all I knew about mormons.
I did hate Minnesota and never wanted to go back. I even told Shelli, not even God can or will send me back. Well, one day my wife asked me if I wanted to go with her to see a friend of hers. I said sure. When we were there. They decided to go to the store. They said they would be right back. I thought I was all alone in the house. Then there was a knock at the door, I did not answer it because it was not my house. I heard someone come downstairs and answer the door. They said, sorry my mom’s not home come back later.
Then the girl came into the room where I was, I asked who it was. She said some mormon missionaries. I thought I was so smart because of the little I heard about them, and I thought for sure with the bible verses from Revelation 22:18-19, I would share those and convert them. I ran out the door wanting to speak to them, They were barely down the steps and seemed a little worried about me wanting to so gladly speak to them.
I shared those verses with them, but they could handle themselves better that I could. They really twisted the scriptures and I could not answer them as I really knew nothing about them. For some reason I really felt like the Lord called me to start sharing with them. I can only assume after all these years that he called me to them because I also was almost deceived and I have a desire to check all facts not just blindly believe stuff I hear. Now, I don’t see this being true with every mormon. But I still do not know why he called me to mormonism, and not another group seeing how I had encountered many other cults.
I went back to the church on Sunday and started talking with other believers trying to figure out if this is really my calling or not. Some people in my church sadly told me to stay away from the mormons, they are a cult going to hell and will not listen. I thought this was stupid. They need Jesus as much as the next person, it does not matter if they are an atheist or cult member, they are going to hell. Others in my church tried to support me and help me out however they could.
So I prayed and said, Lord I cannot rely on people in my church to help me, they are divided on this issue and at the very least some deny the great commission by telling me to ignore the Mormons. I prayed I really need a solid answer from You, and You only.
So one day some friends came to me and said, Rick, here is a computer disk with tons of info on it to help you out in your research. I said, I don’t own a computer. they said, take it to the local library and use it their. I told them I knew from being their before that I was not allowed to do that, their were signs posted stating no outside disks were allowed. So they went aside for a few minutes and talked. it was a married couple, they came back and said, well how about we just give you a computer then to help you out. I knew right then and their God spoke to me and confirmed Mormonism was my calling.
Now I will be honest here so people don’t think that they need something so extreme as it were from the Lord to know their calling. But The computer was not brand new, it was rather old and I never did use it. I did not know how to use a computer and just set it aside. I did go to the library and found only one book on mormonism. It was called (Mormonism shadow or reality), very thick and very in depth. I read the entire thing. I found a ministry link in there for a Mormon ministry. So I called the ministry on the phone and talked with them.
The guy was very helpful, he never once Judged me, never questioned my calling or anything, he was very helpful, told me to write or call with questions, so I did. Because I did not search the scriptures, and was almost deceived. I am not going to just blindly believe, so I question and search everything. Yes I was almost deceived. We as people in general never will agree on issues. I might believe something and you disagree, and you might think I am deceived because I don’t agree with you. At least I try and research and think for myself.
Anyway, I would write the ministry and say, I read in the book (Mormonism Shadow or Reality) a certain story or article, and I would like to get photo copies from books that the LDS used. Then I would call mormons over to my house or I would go look for them out on the streets. Now a lot has happened over the years and I won’t remember everything, But I will do by best to say everything I have encountered over the years.
The church I was going to in Maine, I will not name names of the church or anyone, while I had issues with a few people, I feel everyone makes mistakes and needs to grow. I don’t want anyone who reads this to judge the church as a whole or certain people if you happen to know them over something that happened years ago. Plus, I really feel the Lord used it to help me grow, even if their actions were not his will.
Anyway, I remember a time when my wife and I were leaving the house, I started to strap my newborn child into the car, Shelli was running a few minutes late and we lived on a busy somewhat major road. Not that it matters, but we lived about 6 houses down from the author, Stephen King. While waiting for Shelli, I saw a van turn down the road and let out 3 guys. I noticed they were Mormon Missionaries. So I told Shelli, I will be right back,( Yah Right). I went to talk to all 3 of them. I know I made some progress because the main guy doing all the talking was visibly shaken. I saw his hand shake like he was going to pass out. He did his best to pretend it never happened.
Well anyway, I met up with some missionaries at another time and planned to meet them at my house. So I asked a friend from church if him and his wife wanted to come over and help me, his wife could pray and me and my friend would talk. They did, so when I heard the knock on the door, to my great surprise the same mormon I talked to on the street was standing in my door with someone new. So this guy sat across from me, and his partner sat across from my friend. We talked about two hours about sin, salvation, who is Jesus etc. When it was over, the younger mormon just about jumped over the table to attack my friend. Seriously, we thought he was demon possessed. When he finally cooled down the other missionary again was shaken, and everyone noticed. We all talked about it after they left, and I told them about how I meet him before and what happened. I never saw him again.
The youth group at my church told me how they would go downtown on Friday nights and street witness, they said there were mormons showing up to the bible study before hand, they would try and also convert people. So I gladly went along, boy what a nightmare. The people from my church would rebuke the mormons and tell them your not allowed here and you need to leave. I would get really mad and rebuke the believers and ask them what their problem was. They would tell me, well some of the mormons are hitting on the girls we bring, and others were just trying to distract us from sharing. Or they would say well we brought new baby believers with us and they cannot handle the mormons.
I would rebuke everyone, I would tell them either leave the new believers at home. Regardless of the mormons coming, they will just encounter heathens who have no agenda yet confront the new believers in Christ if you try and share with them. Also, I ask the mormons about hitting on the girls, they denied it, and I could not prove either side was telling the truth. But I would tell the believers, we need to share the gospel with the mormons just like everyone else, and like it or not, this is a public place being outside and downtown. You simply cannot just say leave. I think I talked with something like 6-7 mormons all at once downtown. Once, one wanted to take away my book of mormon from me so I could not use it.
Then the one thing that really boiled my blood was, a girl from the youth group boldly spoke out to the entire group of believers, trying to speak for everyone of us, and said to the mormons, I feel we are casting our pearls before swine; we are finished talking with you. I then spoke out and said, please speak for yourself and no one else. I do not feel I am casting my pearls before swine. And proceeded to rebuke her. That Sunday at church I went to tell her father what I did. Her father was a deacon at the church and I wanted to set the record straight. He told me when his daughter got home from the Friday night outreach, she told him what I said. He agreed with me and also rebuked her.
Anyway, sadly, I called the mormons from that night and had to apologize for the actions of my fellow believers for their attitudes. It was awesome. One of the missionaries and I spoke on the phone for about 2 hours. He shared with me and I shared with him. Shelli would look up verses for me while I was on the phone and I could here him talking with what sounded like at least two other mormons looking up stuff for him. Sadly, I never saw him again either. But that is one thing with the Missionaries, they are only on a missions trip for two years at a time, and might be in an area for as long as 3 months or as short as one day.
There were stupid things along they way I said or did, and when I called the mormon ministry to share, they would lovingly point out how not to handle things. That was good. After being back in Maine for awhile, Shelli started to enjoy it there and make friends. I, on the other hand, while I loved it, was feeling called back here to Minnesota. That was a struggle for me with all Shelli and I went through. Now I go and uproot us again. Well, we talked and of course she thought I was nuts. But along the way we tried to buy a house and I was appling for a cooks position at a Maine hospital. This would have been a very high paying sweet job. But I believe the Lord had other plans. There were only two people who applied for the job at the hospital, me and my boss, the chef, where I worked.
Of course he got the job because he had a lot more experience that me. Go figure, just us two apply, and I did not even know he applied until he gave his notice. Then he told me there was only us two that applied. Doors were closing, telling me I was going back to Minnesota. Two really nice restaurants I worked at closed for good, housing fell through, the job at the hospital fell through, and I had a sweet part time job as a baker at a Maine college that fell through.
I really started to warm to the idea of going back to Minnesota. So I called the mormon ministry and told him. The really funny thing is, he told me, right before I was leaving to Minnesota a mormon temple will be built and close to home. We left Maine in February of 2000, and we have been here ever since and I know beyond a doubt this is where we are supposed to be. When I arrived here I really still did not know a lot about mormonism, not as much as I wanted. But I called the ministry and told them I am here. They put me in touch with a friend of theirs who has a ministry to mormons.
Well once I got here, I just started to witness to mormons wherever I could. I decided my approach would be to verify everything my self, I started to search used book stores, and went to ebay. I decide if I do not own the actual source I will not bring up a subject to a mormon.
Sort of like an atheist saying, I heard your church teaches or does…I would talk to mormons on a rather limited basis because I could not verify much, But in the years I have been hear I have bought and read tons of their stuff.
I have had very long talks with mormons, two of my talks have lasted for upwards of 4 hours. I keep in touch with the 2 ministries and share thoughts and ideas with them as they really have a heart for mormons and will be very honest with me. Not that my friends wont be, but they don’t understand mormons as well as these people do. Then back in July of 2004 I took a two weeks paid vacation with a friend, and went to Salt Lake City, Utah to witness to mormons. Most of the time we slept in my car, but the weather was some of the worst and so severe we needed to rent a motel room a few times, plus just needing a shower we had no other choice.
Boy, I just love this ministry, I would not give it up for nothing. I have been long since blacklisted by the mormons, they avoid my place like the plague. If I want to talk to mormons I need to have friends set up meetings at their place or I need to find them out in parks or on the street.
Well, I see good things coming in the future, but only God knows for sure. The sad part of it all is, so many believers even in my own church have this attitude like it cannot possibly be my calling. I will share my experiences with people, and I have had people say to my face, O-Boy, here he goes again. I’ve also had people roll their eyes at me and just walk away while talking. I say, O-well, God is using me and blessing me beyond belief. If people don’t want to hear what I say, then so be it, I won’t share with them.
Sadly, I know the people who don’t care so I don’t share with them. This is why it is nice to have friends in Christ who care. I have someone to share the Good news when it comes my way, and it blesses her (my wife). I hope this helps people to better understand why I am sharing with the LDS people. Rick b
Amen, brother. And thank you for articulating in a clear, Biblical way what’s been swirling around in my head.
Wow. You’re a Mormon “lover” and you minister to Mormons. You could of saved a lot of blog space and just said that…
Carry on if you must. You will not go far with those of us that actually DO know what we believe. Even Sandra Tanner was not able to answer a pretty big question I put to her some years ago…
You sound like a reasonably nice person- I’ll go out on a limb and make a guarantee that neither you nor I will be in “hell”…
Mr. Nielson, are you the same guy who had a sort of liberal LDS blog a little back, or am I mistaken?
I read an interesting post recently on an exMo website. The topic basically had to do with the exMos debating Mormon related issues with the stillMos. The main exmo dude for the site said something like, “I applaud your efforts but I’m not really interested any more in debating Mormonism with Mormons. My intertest is in assisting those who want to get out of the sinking ship of Mormonism, get out.”
I think the sad thing about exMos, is the number of them, because of their experience in Mormonism, who become atheists. This is a real tragedy and one of the legacies of the Mormon system. For many it’s the deciet they have encountered in the morg and once they ferret out the truth, their trust level in religion is zero. For others it’s the heavy handed legalism and stifling controlling atmosphere of the Mormon church and culture that drives them into an atheist belief system.
I can’t really say why I have this interest in Mormonism and Mormons. I think perhaps I use it as a vehicle to increase my knowledge in Christian doctrine and history. Some part of it also has to do with my interest in psychological manipulation and methods used by certain groups to control their membership. What I find most interesting is the Mormon thought process or manner of thinking. It really blows my hair back and leaves my mouth agape saying, “YOU have Got to be Kidding me.”
But in the end I guess I’m drawn by a desire for Mormons, who can be very pious and devote, to know Jesus, the real Jesus, and see them come to a saving knowledge of His grace. And to know God. The real God. The God that is One, with no beginning no end, who doesn’t change; the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. I guess that’s what motivates me. To see Mormons transfer their faith to the living God and through Him secure eternal life.
I haven’t been able to get to the level of ministering to Mormons. I’m still too angry about being lied to and mislead by the sister missionaries. Maybe eventually I’ll have an effective testimony to keep LDS out of my community because it bothers me when I see other people being lied to and manipulated. Why did JS have to toy with people’s security about salvation and being accepted by family and community? It’s so evil. I don’t know if I’ll ever understand why people buy into JS’s claim that the Bible needed restoring. God is so great and His Word is so beautiful; it’s so exciting and sustaining, full of joy and peace. Not rules and restriction. Just read it for yourself; that’s all I can say.
Carry on if you must. You will not go far with those of us that actually DO know what we believe. Even Sandra Tanner was not able to answer a pretty big question I put to her some years ago…
It’s like this, I can honestly say I have had many LDS who cannot answer some of my hard questions, so if we cannot answer your does that make you guys correct? But if you cannot answer ours, well then your still correct?
Many times I cannot answer questions, but same goes for the LDS.
Then you said You sound like a reasonably nice person- I’ll go out on a limb and make a guarantee that neither you nor I will be in “hell”…
Dont be so quick to promise something you cannot keep, the Bible speak more about Hell than heaven, it speaks about false prophets, teachers and False gospels. All these things LDS cannot seem to answer. Who are these false teachers the Bible speaks of, what is this false gospel the Bible speaks of? Rick b
scnielsen…what was the question??? Am I the only one who is dying to know?
The only reason I’m not dying to know is, I honestly suspect many here can answer his question, I believe Sandra could also. I suspect it is more a matter of, we here can answer the question, but he does not want to here the answer.
I cannot tell you how many times LDS do not like the answer to questions, and since they dont like the answer, they instead say, you did not answer my question. Rick b
Thank you for posting. I’m really interested in the exit stories of exMormons, especially those that have found the One, true, only living God. If you would share it, I would love to hear it. If you don’t feel you want to do it on a blog, the moderators can give you my e mail address. It really serves as encouragement to those of us who labor in this particular vineyard.
Why post here?
To better witness to Mormons in person and to better be able to communicate with them.
I think many Mormons just assume that their belief is very similar to ours. It is not, as we show time and again, and to be able to effectively communicate with them is huge.
By learning what they argue shows what they believe, and I think despire their objections, most of the regular posters here do have a good idea what they beleive. They may object to this, but I think it is true, and as someone else said, they often don’t like the answers.
But if they are not confronted with these answers they will not even begin to understand where they a)differ from the rest of Christianity and b) are in error.
Can I conver them? Nope. But I can plant seeds that may help the someone else do the rest of the work…
Thanks for this post, Aaron. And thank you for your love for the Mormon people and for all the diligent research you do. Thank you most of all for your love for God and your efforts to expose false, heretical teachings about Him!
I’m always so sorry when I give the wrong impression. I’m not exMormon; I had just visited with LDS missionaries for a few months in my home. I am in the process of reading the Bible from cover to cover because I want to know for myself what it says. So with LDS, I wanted to find out for myself what they were about. I was interested in their family values and the commercials I had seen on TV about showing love in situations where you might normally be angry. I was also looking for a place to worship God more fully. So what a let down when I went to the local LDS meeting house. The speakers only relayed personal stories and did not refer to the Bible at all, or even the BoM for that matter. They didn’t stand to sing their hymns; it felt very 1800’s. I also noticed how blond all the kids were and it bothered me but I did not know why, until I found the MRM website. The pressure from the sister missionaries was tremendous. They stopped by almost every day, much of the time without an appointment. They knew I was Christian and they seemed inspired by my testimony. They kept promising me I would get more of God if I joined LDS but I couldn’t get past the fact that they claim the Bible needed to be restored. Then to see the list of requirements for baptism was the last straw. You have to be in complete right standing with LDS before you can even join. All the months I had met with the sister missionaries, they never mentioned the history and hierarchy of their god, and how Jesus is separate, or about exaltation or exclusive ceremonies in the temple (even when I asked what the temples were for). So the decision to end my relationship with them was based on their opinion of the Bible, and how it’s not reliable. What a waste of a beautiful opportunity to hear from God and to know Him.
Thank you Linda.
That’s a great story. I’ll ponder it as I’m pounding the road out on my bike trek. You might ask, “Why would I ponder it?” Since I’ve been on this website interacting with Mormons, I’ve had to revisit the whole concept of “election”, especially Ephesians chapter one starting with vs four where it says “..just as He chose us in Him before the foundaiton of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of His grace……..also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will….”
For some reason God protected you. I had an experience thirty-seven years ago where I had given my name, phone number and address to some Mormon missionaries. I had been in an intense spiritual search for about a year. The Mormon missionaries never contacted me!. A couple of weeks later, alone, by myself, watching Billy Graham on TV, (a guy I couldn’t stand at the time), I gave my life to Christ. Later I was talking to a Christian friend who had spent several months patiently answering my questions and taking some of my good natured abuse about Christianity, why the Mormon missionaries hadn’t shown up? She said, “It wasn’t going to happen. I had every Christian in town praying for you.” Even as I write this I get choked up and tears come to my eyes reflecting on what God did for me in Christ Jesus and how he choose me. I don’t get choosing and I don’t consider myself a hard core Calvinist in any respect……but there’s something to this choosing. I know God (according to the Bible) desires everyone to come to a saving knowledge of His grace. But still………
First off, thanks for going back to the original format. It is so much easier to read.
scnielsen: I, also am curious to know what the question was that could not be answered, if indeed there was one. After all, we are here to learn and be enlightened. Nielsen is my maiden name, maybe we are related.
“You said, “Wow. You’re a Mormon “lover” and you minister to Mormons. You could of saved a lot of blog space and just said that…
Carry on if you must. You will not go far with those of us that actually DO know what we believe”
Is there a reason why you can’t respect the right of someone else to express his views the way he chooses? Your condescending attitude was not warranted.
Do you think it’s okay for you and the rest of your Mormon friends to go around and witness to Christians that they need to repent and join the LDS Church? Why are you on this blog site? Certainly, I don’t sense any love from you for non-LDS. Rick B expressed his heart and love for a lost people, and yes, Mormons are a lost people. You only expressed contempt and arrogance.
Your testimony was authentic and beautiful. Thank you for sharing it. I was a Mormon, and I have a heart for a people that I used to be part of. You have never been Mormon, and I am amazed how you and others who have never been Mormons are so dedicated to bringing them the truth about Jesus Christ and His grace. It truly is a calling God has put on your heart and on the hearts of others. Thank you and everyone else who ministers to the Mormon people. Perhaps, God will use some of you to bring the true gospel message of Jesus Christ to my loved ones and friends who are still in bondage to the false gospel espoused by JS and his followers. I am also amazed at how many former Mormons are out there. It is an amazing witness to me that the Spirit of God is at work in the Mormon people. And, that’s why we press on in the Name of Jesus Christ, whose blood atoned for our sins, who justifies us by our faith, and who sanctifies us through the power of the Holy Spirit. His grace causes me to stand in awe of Him. How amazing that He saved me from Mormonism!
Peace and Grace!
God does offer salvation to every living soul; it’s just that He has the amazing ability to make each one of us feel as if we are the favorite. I get where you’re coming from, and I don’t side with Calvinist thought. Fortunately, it’s not an essential to salvation!
Peace and Grace!
I am rather curious, are you the same Rick B. who signed off his MC posts as rick b (LDS priesthood holder) in days gone by?
I’ve been curious for some time as to how Mormons actually come to Christ in faith and abandon Mormonism. It seems that they have a different road to travel to finally reach salvation. They have to reorient their entire religious experience and belief system. I use to do some witnessing to folks as a result of involvement in the Evangelism Explosion program. Giving someone a clear picture of salvation through faith by the means of God’s grace was, for-the-most-part, a pretty straight forward process. They’d get it! It would just click with them. However, I don’t know if I’ve ever heard of a Mormon being led to Christ in the same way. The process with Mormons seems to take any where from five to eight years and they seem to pursue it solo. I’ve even heard of husbands and wives searching separately; not sharing their journey with each other.
For some reason, there’s something at work with Mormons making that journey that I don’t understand……in terms of God reaching out and guiding them out of the morg to Him.
I don’t know why some get it, and others don’t. If someone has some insight into sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with Mormons, I’d be very interested in hearing it.
I cannot tell you how many times people have asked me, if I am a former Mormon, simply becauseof my desire to reach the lost LDS.
St Crispin said I am rather curious, are you the same Rick B. who signed off his MC posts as rick b (LDS priesthood holder) in days gone by?
Yep that was me. I have a reason for posting that, I will not say, because I might use it again, I believe I shared the reason with the Mod Sharon. But I have reasons for doing what I do. I tend to think in strange ways, but at times they work. Also Falcon calls me, The Hammer.
I will be in appelton Wisc, till Sat Night, I am in River falls Wisc Right now at my parents house. So I wont have much computer access till I get home, so if anyone asks me a question I will answer it Monday after work. Rick b
How do Mormon’s come to Christ and abandon Mormonism? Your ? needs to be looked at from the LDS perspective to see the answer. Here are 3 good reasons why
What are you asking the LDS to do? Abandon all the he has ever found joyful. Not only that but to state that it was all a lie to begin with. Analogy: My father is a master of producing great apples. He tells me what kind of seeds to use, how/when to plant, the recipe for constant daily and yearly maintenance in order to get the same kind of sweet apple. So I believe him. Why? because I have seen and tasted the apples that he has grown and they are awesome. Not only do I believe him, but I do exactly as he says. What is the result? Sweet apples.
What you are asking a Mormon to do is to turn away from the sweet apples he has right in front of him. You are asking him to state that this apple including the entire process that produced was false. The tree and apple don’t exist, or if they do, it really isn’t good. It is really a bad apple, I just can’t tell until I taste the REAL apples that you have.
Why would I do that? What kind of integrity do I have to deny the gifts God has given through the fulness of the gospel. In order to take your proposition I would have to ignore the fruit, deny the process that produced it, and then take your seed, plant it, use your recipe and then compare the two. Does that make any sense at all?
they find it solo…What else would you expect? The gospel is built on the foundation of prophet and apostles. The only way for me to “find my way out” is to go my own course (every man walketh in his own way). Cutting off your source of salvation knowledge by venturing on your own seems suicidal.
The Word of God shows how the gospel is to be preached. Why would we turn from the scriptural pattern to a group of “believers” that are preaching in a way(this whole blog) that the scriptures have never shown or advocated.
Interesting post. Although I would have to assume that your motives are genuine I would ask this. Where do you get your justification in the scriptures to pursue such a course? If you possess the “true” gospel, why preach it in such a different manner than your forebearers? I would be interested to see an example of a prophet/apostles/disciple/believer etc. who preached the gospel in the manner that utilized by this group. I would expect to see a discourse on the details surrounding all manner of false doctrine. Any examples?
Defender…is that a joke question?? Check out 2 Corinthians 11:4,13,26; Galatians 1:6-9; 2 Peter 2:1; 1 John 4:1.
Move on to the church fathers and you have all kinds of writings against heresies that popped up over the early years in the church.
Does the word apologetics ring any bells?
As far as the Gospel it hasn’t changed since 1 Corinthians 15:1-5. Nothing needed restoring…just accepting and spreading. Blessings to all who defend the truth! 🙂
Defender, two thoughts first on denying your faith, and second on your analogy…
First, yes, it is a big deal to ask what we ask– that you do abandon the faith you believe so strongly to be true. I make no denial that it is a huge deal– your faith is your life, and if that is wrong, what of your life? Of course, your life has value, but it seriously questions everything you currently hold dear. In short, it is a big deal.
Second, your apple analogy is missing something– it misses that there is something better for you to eat than that apple. Let me put it another way– you assume that apple is the best because it tastes the best. However, that apple could be poisoned, or there could simply be another fruit that is better for you, say a banana, or to use the trendy fruit– a pomegranate.
While you like the apple, and while it has “done you good” in your life, there is something better out there, something more fulfilling and will give you more than what the apple has.
I know you do not believe me, because you have been taught that this apple is all you need, and as far as you are concerned, this apple has given you a good life. But there is a better fruit.
Do you believe me? Do you want to find this better fruit?
The scriptures you quote warn of false prophets, turning to another gospel, etc. A few thoughts:
1. Very fitting that the ancient apostles would warn of such things given the impending apostasy.
2. Why didn’t Paul go into detail about these heretical doctrines, what crazy things the leaders taught, how…point by point.. the doctrine was incorrect? Because the warning was sufficient. Much different than the mormon coffee approach.
3. Why would the church fathers become interested in heresy defense when the ancient apostles were content with a simple warning? Another evidence of the apostasy. Do you really believe that apostles/prophets are apologetics? If so, I would like to see a scriptural example.
4. You might be interested to know that all the scriptures you quote support very nicely the fact that, after the apostles were killed, Christianity was rather easily taken away from very basic truths, such as the Godhead. The apostles gave plenty of warning.
5. The gospel hasn’t changed since Corinthians? Actually the gospel has never changed. It is eternally the same, something, apparently the restoration has given us that maybe you should consider.
Defender…the scriptures I threw out were just to demonstrate that the body of Messiah has always been assaulted by false believers/heresy and had no problem addressing the situation head-on.
1. I believe you are alluding to 2 Thess 2:3…in which case I would ask you who the man of sin is and when was he revealed…assuming you believe the “apostasy” is a past event?
2. He was not addressing the heretics…his letters were all addressed to believers/Jews.
3. Sorry to be dull but I don’t understand the questions. My point was that the writings were much more specific as time went by.
4. Can you give any references for your statement? The very basic truths in Scripture were codified in creeds which as I’m sure you know we still recite and accept.
5. We agree that the Gospel is eternal (1 out of 5 ain’t bad)…however what Smith restored is nothing more than Masonry blended with some Christian verbage. Temples/lodges…celestial kingdom/celestial lodge above. The badge of a mason being his righteous deeds…I could go on and on…
Can you explain what is so different about this than any other para-church organization. Para-church organizations have a long history in Protestantism and in the United States. Many of our seminaries are independent of a denomination. Anti-slavery activism began with Protestant para-church groups. IBS is 200 years old this year, older than your Church. John Calvin himself turned Geneva into a school of missions, as the “Register of the Company of Pastors” testifies to us.
A warning about heresy is not an evidence of a general apostasy. And this is why para-church organizations like MRM and others need to stand up and defend against false teaching. As I have said before, The Mormon belief in a great apostasy cannot be supported biblically, historically, or theologically. It might have been a good idea in 1830 but with the vast amounts of information we have available today it doesn’t pass muster.
Defender, you say the Gospel has not changed. What is the Gosepl? I’d appreciate a more detailed answer…
I am wondering if this is another place where we need to be careful to flush out what exactly is meant by a given term.
I’ve already discovered that “faith” is actually a term that we need to be careful with, as is Jesus himself, the God-head, the church, works, baptism, scripture, and others.
So, what is the Gospel in Mormonism…
If Mormons are going to prove the great apostasy they should be able to prove a new multi-tiered priesthood, a new temple system replacing the Jewish temple, a new temple ceremony system, new levels of salvation, a new understanding on eternal progression to godhood with all this entails including a newly changeable god, that man and God are now the same species allowing for progression, some form of polytheism, henotheism, or at least a Christian belief and acceptance of monolatrism, etc. This should also be able to be seen early on in the writings of the first and second century and be systematically different from Christian teachings of the third century. I have not seen even secular patristic scholars who have fond evidence of a single Mormon doctrine in the Church fathers. Until Mormons can demonstrate this in a scholarly fashion continued claims of a great apostasy are simply misguided.
I find it rather humorous that you attempt to answer Falcon’s question on how Mormons come to Christ and abandon Mormonism when you are still in bondage to the false faith you so proudly defend. The Mormon religion is built on a lie and, therefore, has been a lie to begin with. And, the foundation of prophets and apostles simply refers to the Bible. One has to discard the message of the New Testament to make a claim that God has “restored” a priesthood with a hierarchy of prophets and apostles. This claim reveals that the one making the claim has no understanding of the role of prophet nor the requirements the “real” apostles adhered to when they chose Matthias to take the place of Judas (none of your LDS leaders meet the requirement). Additionally, one has to be lacking in understanding of the role of the “real” Levitical priesthood, as well as not understand the meaning of the veil of the temple being torn in two from top to bottom when Jesus died on the cross. The fulness of the gospel is Jesus Christ, not the false gospel of JS. Your comment on preaching is nothing more than a red herring. But, hey, it’s your prerogative to defend a false faith that is not founded on biblical teaching. I pray that you humble yourself and repent, which is the way a Mormon leaves Mormonism to follow the “real” Jesus Christ. I can say that because I know the Way.
Peace and Grace!
For a Mormon to come to the living God they have to respond to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. There’s a spiritual battle going on for the souls (in this discussion) of Mormons. The problem is that Mormons are having “spiritual” experiences that are consistent with and reinforced by their Mormon god but not Thee God. And in addition to that, the Mormon male, specifically is all rapped up in the process of the Mormon success machine. In order to come to Christ and accept the living God, the Mormon male would have to give-up the idea of being a priest and the hope of becoming a god himself. I’ve mentioned often, it’s the story of the rich young ruler all over again but in different terms. To me it’s a no brainer. Paul talked about all he had gained in his previous religion and how he considered it all rubbish now having the upward calling of Jesus Christ and the joy of knowing Him personally. This is not the Mormon Jesus we’re talking about here. For you exMormons who post here, I’m sure your lament might be the same as the apostle Pauls as he tried to bring his fellow Jews to Christ. You see it clearly now, they don’t. But there’s always hope.
Interstate 94 runs through Wisconsin where I live. If I pick it up, about ten miles from my house and go west, I’ll end-up in the Twin Cities. If I want to go to Madison I’ll travel east. Now if I get on I-94 and head west I won’t end up in Madison no matter how badly I want that to happen or even how much I might believe I’m heading in the right direction.
It’s the same with religous faith. We may want something to be true, we may even believe something is true, but if it isn’t we will be as lost as someone traveling west wanting to end up in Madison. It isn’t going to happen.
The hunger for true spiritual knowledge in Christianity has been around since the first century. The Gnostics, for example, called themselves “enlightened.” The early church called them heretics.
I don’t know if Mormons could rightly be called heretics because they are so far out of the Christian basic doctrinal loop, that they are a religion by themselves. It all starts with the nature of God. Biblical Christianity and Mormonism do not acknowledge the same God. If you don’t have the same God, it’s pretty tough to even have a common point of discussion. As Christians we believe that Mormonism is not a pathway to the Father and thus eternal life through Jesus Christ.
Mormonism overlooks the fact that a common denominator of belief did exist in what ancient Christians called the “Rule of Faith” in Latin or the “Canon of Truth” in Greek. This was a brief description of what Christians believed about God and his story of salvation. The Rule of Faith was what the church was preaching and teaching even before the various gospels and episles then circulating becme canonized into one New Testament. The New Testament was formed and emerged from this early tradition.
We can go all the way back to A.D. 125 when Aristides of Athens wrote his Apology to the emperor in order to defend Christians against false accusations by giving a true acccount of what they believed.
Citations of the Rule of Faith are found in the second-and third-century writings o Hippolytus and Novationa in Rome, Tertullian and Cyprian in Carthage, and Origen and Dionysisus in Alexandria. There was no one Rule of Fatih, but many “rules” that differed in wording, style, and purpose, yet all shared basic characteristics. They were usually Trinitarian in format and included the birth, passion, and ascension of Christ. Some, but not all, referred to the second coming of Christ in glory, the final judgment, the resurrection of the body, and everlasting life for the saints. Tertullian observed that the Rule was much like the four Gospels, which possess a basic unity of truth amidst their differences.
The Rule served as a plumb line of truth in a religiously pluralistic world. It possessed fixed and fluid elements that both represented and also helped shape Chrisitan identity. Its widespread use demonstrates that the earliest Christians were very much interested in correct doctrine. The many citations of the Rule provfe that the shared essentials of the church’s tradition created a fairly cohesive platform of doctrinal norms to which Christians could appeal. (attibution to D.H. Williams professor of religion in patrisics and historical theology-Baylor University)
So really this idea of a “restored gospel” just doesn’t meet the test of evidence and reality. The concept does, however, provide false prophets with an excuse to sell their particular religious concept. Everythings wrong. I have the real deal. I received it by means of revelation and heavenly appearences. All that is necessary after the claim is a convincing storyteller, a dynamic personality and the ability to manipulate people emotionally.
Really, I’m here for you who come and read and are questioning if Mormonism is the pathway into eternal life. I’m available any time. Ask the moderators for my personal information and they will provide it for you.
Remember the underlying discussion is why mrm feels the need to continue it’s attack/outreach to the LDS. My point, in all my comments, is this is unbiblical.
1. I am not trying to prove that an apostasy did/did not occur. I am simply showing that the apostles knew it was going to happen. They did not feel any need to go into details about the myriad of ways of heresy. The warning was enough.
2.My point exactly! Apostles/Prophets are not called to address heretics, going blow-for-blow so to speak. So why should I turn from Elder Holland’s beautiful testimony of Jesus to Mormon coffee for guidance. Which of two is following the pattern of true disciples?
3. Again my point exactly. Why do the church fathers, (now void of authority and revelation) feel they need to deviate from what the original apostles did? Why are they not content to simply warn and testify? MRM is following the same pattern as the “early church, 3rd/4th century” perpetuating apostate patterns.
4.I have nothing wrong with creeds as long as they say the same thing as scripture. The Nicean creed and John 17 are not the same thing.
Thanks for the info on Para organizations, wasn’t aware of their designation. If they are doing good, all the praise to them. I suppose the good that may come from them applies when they follow the example of the scriptures. My point is the same as I made to Titanic; how does the MRM pattern even remotely follow that established by OT/NT prophets/apostles? If you can show me that these authorized servants even remotely felt the need to dissect these “heresies”, I would be interested. If not, on what basis does MRM feel the authority to address such things?
The gospel is our Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness. The central doctrine of the gospel is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Prophet Joseph Smith said, “The first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith 1:4).
I have largely stopped giving much time or attention to those who religiously criticize religious criticism. It is so foolish and self-defeating and arrogant and often deflecting from the thing their religion is being criticized over, that it comes from a heart-issue of not wanting to be subject to the light of public scrutiny.
Religious questioning is far different from a career of relentless religious knitpicking and faultfinding (especially directed to one faith). Obviously, I and others are willing to address the issues. My point and question still remain. Who, in the scriptures, is your exemplar? Your underlying premise is LDS leaders have no authority, yet I see the same pattern of teaching from them that is found in the scriptures. Where is your pattern derived from?
“By what authority do you say these things?”
“I will answer your question if you answer mine.”
“By what authority did Elijah attack the priests of Baal, Jesus attack the Pharisees, and Paul attack the idolatry of the Athenians?”
DoF, I firmly Jesus would have talked to you this way. And after you fail to answer the question by deconstructing and deflecting, he would just away from you, preferring instead to engage people who have more humility than to religiously criticize the entire task of religious criticism.
I cannot follow your logic. Yours is a hopeless proposition. According to your defintion, I am in the bondage of a false faith believing a lie is true. Bondage=Blindness right? OK so if I am blind and in bondage, I could never see the truth (according to jack). Unless I humble myself and repent? Of what? Should I confess that I have believed a lie that I believe is true because Jackg says he knows the way and I should believe him? The only solutions to your formula is that repentance and humility means following Jackg because he says so. If you really knew the Way, I would expect you to preach the way He did. I don’t see or feel it.
Of course this is a spiritual battle. Agreed. I am just amazed that your platform for coming to the truth is Mosiah 3 (yielding to the Spirit). Nevertheless, I love the analogy of the “two ways”. Something that Hugh Nibley has spent extensive time on showing that this is an ancient doctrine that was nonexistent until JS reminded us of it.
Obviously, Biblical Christianity and Mormonism do not agree in the same God or there would have been no need for a restoration. The same way Jews and Christians do not agree in the same God.
Either the Father and Son are two seperate beings or they are not. I am glad we can agree on that. I would say that there are countless “Christians” who already believe in the true nature of God but won’t know until they hear the gospel preached the correct way.
Important distinction: I am not challenging the Savior or his authority, only yours. Why? because if you feel justified in your attacks, I would like to know why you feel so. You must feel some responsibility or duty. My only question is do you see the same approach by the ancient apostles? If not, why the need to deviate?
Nevertheless, I would respond to your question with the Priesthood. I have not tried to sugar coat the answer or deflect or whatever. Is this the same authority by which you are acting? No trap or ulterior motives present.
The reason you can’t follow my logic is because it isn’t Mormon logic. It’s biblical logic. You reason from a false premise, while I reason from a biblical premise. And, I must say that your attempts to try and cast me as some pedant is really humorous in that it is such a childish tactic: “Should I confess that I have believed a lie that I believe is true because Jackg says he knows the way and I should believe him?” Don’t believe me. Believe the Bible. At least quit believing JS. I mean, you eaily reject what I say (which is biblical), but you readily accept the lies of a false prophet (you have to add a qualifier regarding the Bible in order to swallow his junk). I used to respond the same way you do when I was enslaved to Mormonism, so I feel for you. It can be rough when there is no more ammo with which to defend your position, which is what you are probably feeling, as I have been there, as well. Preaching the biblical Christ and His true gospel takes away that feeling of helplessness, and that is PEACE! I know it’s difficult to understand that a person who thinks they are perfect according to the letter of the law needs to repent of his or her erroneous thinking about Jesus Christ. Read Acts 2 to gain a better understanding of what I am talking about. Praying for you, Defender.
Peace and Grace!
Take a week holiday and miss out on all this fun!
Well when did my ministry to the LDS start? I was 14, just ordained a teacher and on the next Sunday given a home teaching assignment. My companion and I went out every month and visited our families – 3 out of the 4 were inactive. We taught them a small scriptural message each time, invited them to come back to the fold and offered assistance when required. The fourth family was a single physically disabled sister. We organised a few service projects to assist her when needed and enjoyed the outpouring of the Spirit while doing them. This was my first time in meeting/interacting with people that had either lost their faith or were just lazy.
Before I left on my mission a ‘concerned’ friend invited me to his place and asked me a few questions about the Bible and my beliefs. I could not answer most of them because I was not that knowledgeable at that time. I went home and asked my father about the answers to those questions and he gave them to me (this was before the internet). On my mission, in the MTC, I learned a few new things about the church and JS which I kept in mind as I went on my mission. In Finland I encountered my fist real LDS critic literature. I could answer most of the questions but I couldn’t answer a few of them so I went home and studied the answers from the Bible. An ex-member in Finland was paid to write a book about the LDS faith and it was distributed to people who were found to be learning about the LDS church. When I found this out I decided to be ready and have answers to as many questions as I could. This assisted in my mission many times and allowed people to know the truth even if they disagreed with our beliefs. While on my mission I also went to a random member’s place once a week for 15 minutes to share a scriptural/spiritual thought. Many members enjoyed this as it helped brighten their day by inviting the Spirit in for a time.
When I came home from my mission I found the internet and started studying what was out there for and against the LDs church. I was able to find answers to many questions and I wrote them down. This assisted some times with answering questions that other members had and so I thought to myself that maybe that was one thing I could do to assist the church – find answers to the LDS critics’ questions so that members will be able to gain a stronger knowledge of the true faith. When my son died I really had a question of faith – did I believe it or not? I did more research and praying and found for myself the answer that I did believe. I have discussed with my leaders (ie Elder’s quorum president, Bishop and Stake President) what I have done with researching on the internet and thhat I do have answers to some questions (not all) and if they know of someone that might need help with these type of questions I wuld be ready to assist. I still do my home teaching and share a spiritual message with the families. So I guess I got my ‘call’ when I was 14 but it took a few years for me to reach a reasonable potential to be able to minister to the LDs properly.
Well it’s very obvious, as it has been for a long time, that the Mormons who post here clearly know the difference between Mormonism and Biblical Christianity. The problem is that knowing the truth, they have chosen a lie.
We write here for the Mormons that are seeking a way out of the deception of Mormonism. The TBMs that show-up and post, provide a good foil for us to preach the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Mormonism is a sinking ship. Our Mormon posters know it. They can’t bail the water out faster than it’s coming in. The iceberg that Mormonism has hit is the internet. Mormoms looking for an exit, can find the information they are looking for in the privacy of their own homes. There are any number of websites providing information, for those in exodus from Mormonism. It’s a life raft of truth.
The TBMs can’t stop these folks and neither can the Mormon authorities. Questioning Mormons know the truth when they hear it because it rings true in their spirits. This is true revelation and it leads to salvation in Jesus Christ. Personally I’m proud and happy to be part of bringing the Good News of Jesus Christ and eternal life to Mormons.
The experience and insight of exMormons who post here serves as an encouragement and inspiration to all of us. Keep it coming.
Why scream all day long that you are teaching Bibilical Christianity and yet never back it up? My question on this thread was simple. Show me what is taking place on this blog (ie your so called Ministry) is even remotely Biblical? If this is Biblical Christianity show me the parallel. Don’t shout or repeat the same one-liners. You say believe the Bible but fail to show that the Bible promote, encourages, or commands the exact course you are taking. My conclusion: The Bible is true but you are not true to the Bible. Of course, I am wrong. So perhaps a predestined soul like yourself should show me, though I will never be able to see since i am was not predestined to see (another Biblical doctrine, right?)
DoF, the Bible tells us thematically to preach, correct, rebuke, teach, reprove, refute, expose, proclaim, etc. We do so with the help of the Holy Spirit and with the authority of the very word of God.
If you want to talk about priesthood authority and religiously criticize the act of religious criticism, then you need to find another discussion thread.
Aaron, if I may,
Defender, another verse is when Paul tells us to be everything to everyone so that we might reach them with the Gospel (which is different than yours, by the way– Defender). This gives a great amount of flexibility, and I think this includes having to be aggressive, and must include the use of new methods and technologies.
The bottom line is that the Bible gives plenty of wisdom in how to address heresy. You just don’t like it because this is aimed at your faith.
I can’t say I blame you for it, but if you knew the Bible you would know what it is Aaron speaks of, and the verse I bring out now, too. You are better served searching that for your answer than you are complaining of it here.