Keeping Up with the Mormons

In the Mormon Coffee discussion regarding recent changes to Gospel Principles, one commenter wrote,

” The Church started out and was against something, and in a few years, they were for the thing they were against, a few years later they were against it again, and now the are sort of, kind of, celestially for it – polygamy. Is God the author of confusion? 1 Cor 14:33.

The LDS Church has dealt with polygamy and other issues over the years somewhat capriciously. Church leaders teach one thing, and a few years later the tides turn and the teaching changes course. Sometimes the issues are important (like plural marriage being required/not required for exaltation), and sometimes they are relatively inconsequential. But the thread that runs through them all is the idea that God has his own hand on the rudder of the ship and directs Church leaders directly.

One fairly inconsequential issue that demonstrates the chameleon-like nature of LDS leadership is its attitude toward the word “Mormon.”

A few months ago the LDS Church launched a new, official radio station: Mormon Channel. The Mormon Channel web site includes links for other LDS sites, such as “Mormon Identity,” “Mormon Messages,” and “”

It wasn’t that long ago that the LDS Church eschewed the use of the nickname “Mormon,” but apparently the nickname is now back in vogue.

“Mormon” was first used as a pejorative in reference to followers of Joseph Smith and his new religion. In 1830, “Mormon” was bad.

But in 1843 Joseph Smith stated,

“We say from the Saxon, ‘good’; the Dane, ‘god’; the Goth, ‘goda’; the German, ‘gut’; the Dutch, ‘goed’; the Latin, ‘bonus’; the Greek, ‘kalos’; the Hebrew, ‘tob’; that the Egyptian, ‘mon.’ Hence, with the addition of ‘more,’ or the contraction, ‘mor,’ we have the word ‘mormon’; which means, literally, ‘more good.'” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 300)

In 1843, “Mormon” was good.

Almost 140 years later LDS public relations pressured the media to stop using the word “Mormon” and replace it with “LDS Church” or “Latter-day Saints.” In 1982 “Mormon” was bad. Again.

At the April 1990 General Conference LDS Apostle Russell M. Nelson upheld and reiterated the non-use of the word “Mormon,” but that position was soon softened. At the next General Conference Gordon B. Hinckley, then First Counselor in the First Presidency, taught:

“[Joseph Smith’s] statement intrigued me — Mormon means ‘more good.’ I knew, of course, that ‘more good’ was not a derivative of the word Mormon. I had studied both Latin and Greek, and I knew that English is derived in some measure from those two languages and that the words more good are not a cognate of the word Mormon. But this was a positive attitude based on an interesting perception.” (“Mormon Should Mean More Good,” Ensign, November 1990, 52)

So Joseph said “Mormon” means “more good.” Gordon B. Hinckley said “Mormon” should mean “more good,” but it doesn’t. Regardless, in 1990 “Mormon” was good, and though use of the nickname didn’t carry the blessing of the Church, it was at least okay that it was used by non-members.

It didn’t stay that way for long. Just over a decade later, as the Church took a public stance to move away from the nickname “Mormon Church” and “LDS Church” to the different nickname of “The Church of Jesus Christ,” LDS Apostle Dallin Oaks said,

“This decision [to change the nickname] is right-oriented, not result-oriented. We’re only trying to do what the Lord wants us to do.” (Gustav Niebuhr, “Adapting ‘Mormon’ to Emphasize Christianity,” February 19, 2001)

In 2001, use of the nickname “Mormon” was bad.

But in 2009 the use of “Mormon” is back in full swing and happily endorsed by the LDS Church.

Over the 179 years that the Mormon Church has been in existence, it has changed its position on this five times, with several of the about-faces articulated by leaders of the Church in their official capacities as apostles. To be fair, according to Dallin Oaks they are only trying to do what they understand the Lord wants them to do. The question is, where is all the confusion over this issue coming from?

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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141 Responses to Keeping Up with the Mormons

  1. Andy Watson says:

    Part 2

    Will other people of faith be given a chance to audition to sing these songs? No. Mormons say to Christianity, “We are Christians just like you!”. Okay, then let the Methodists, Baptists and Lutherans take part in the singing auditions and let’s not call it “Mormon Nights” and instead call it “Christian Night”. No? I guess not when it comes to cases of special mention. Mormons want to be labeled “Mormons” when it fits with their agenda. Consider this from the article:

    “It’s also a wonderful opportunity to invite our friends and socialize with them outside of a normal Church setting and where they maybe feel a little more comfortable. We’ll have, more than likely, A LARGE GROUP OF MISSIONARIES THERE IN THEIR WHITE SHIRTS.”

    Now we are getting somewhere! The real motive comes out – a proselytizing event under the guise of a sports event! I have to hand it to the Mormon Church, this is masterful planning on pulling this underlying, hidden agenda unknown to the duped masses there to see a ball game. People are eating their hot dogs and drinking their beer, then the missionary youth show up in the aisles to peddle Joseph Smith’s gospel/god – bravo!

    I’m just surprised that they put this in print and that Dodger stadium doesn’t have a problem with it. I would think the Muslims would be filing a law suit wanting “Muslim Night” or thousands would be complaining to the stadium for this staged proselytizing event.

    Boo hoo hoo..waaaahh…sniff sniff..aaaachooo! I want “Baptist Nights”! At the Braves Games in Atlanta there never was “Pentecostal Nights”. I’m over it.

    I’m only a few hours from Dodger Stadium. Maybe tomorrow I can get over there and do some evangelizing myself. Maybe I should call the stadium and complain or call my lawyer demanding my religious rights? Maybe I am being persecuted as a Baptist? Are there any lawyers at the ACLU that are Baptists? Nope!

    Mormons should be beaming with pride on August 6 instead of crying persecution.

  2. st.crispin says:


    All you can do is insult and bully people who disagree with you and talk about fantasy erections that mysteriously appear to you.

    Is that the level of your discourse? Apparently so.

  3. HankSaint says:


    I really appreciate that your actually addressing me and not others, thanks, and I mean that.

    We will dismiss the first paragraph of your reply, there really was no reason to call me a whiner, other then for affect in front of your peer group and choir members 🙂

    What spirt guides the LDS, you tell me. Most cults don’t last very long, and especially one that practiced polygamy at one time. So tell me what is it about the Book of Mormon that draws such a Crowd, both investigators and Creedal Christians? Approx. 170 years of viability, growing, and success in Missionary work. So immediately you switch you argument to sensationalism and not doctrine, interesting tack.
    I notice at the check out stand at Grocery stores, how fast the gossip tabloids seem to be bought up by the gullible and uneducated.
    Headlines, “Christ and Lucifer try to make up as siblings, long battle seems will end only when Lucifer finds outer darkness”, “God once a man, or was it man became God”. “New discovery, Evangelicals now find evidence that God has a wife. Hold the press, Evangelicals find evidence that God has many wives”. “Build you own Planet, buy space now from your local Mormon Agent”. “Evangelicals men like the ideas of keeping your Spiritual wife always Pregnant, reading more about Mormonism”.

    Now that we got these aberrations put to rest, maybe you can tell me more about each and every one of them as we teach them, beyond the small snippets and nuggets your borrowed talking points mock us for.

    I will be waiting for more information that hopefully you can find in our Standard Works, or Articles of Doctrine. Please accommodate us all.

    Regards, Richard.


  4. St. Crispin,

    When did I ever lie about your religion? Are you admitting that you lied in this thread? Do you really stand by what you wrote as accurate? Be honest. Have you ever posted here under a different name?

  5. HankSaint says:

    David, Andy, get a life, what does this have to do with anything other then playing in the sand box and calling each other names, how pedestrian can you get. Grow up, or get help.


  6. HankSaint,

    Question, “what does this have to do with anything other then playing in the sand box and calling each other names”.

    Answer – An equivalent of doctrinal evolution does not exist in our camp as does in yours.

    I must say that the Mormons here are deflecting all over the place. HankSaint, if someone accused you of lying, would it not be all together appropriate for you to address the charge? If someone here is posting under multiple names I for one would like to know.

    Or we could get into more substantive issues like – the state of LDS polygamy through the years. In 1835, your church official denounced polygamy, calling it a dirty lie made up by detractors. Low and behold it surfaced openly in the decades to come, although the D&C was against it. Polygamy went from being disavowed to seemingly required in the BY years . . . Then renounced (sort of) to really renounced. If that is not “change”, I do not know what is.

    In the immortal words of every elementary school kid ever – “He started it” 🙂

  7. LARRY CLARK says:

    The problem I have, with the start of polygamy, was the fact they lied and denied it for years. It’s the reason Joseph Smith got arrested – smashing the printing press that said he was practicing polygamy. They didn’t admit it until they moved to another country (Mexico). However it later became part of the United States. Does God give everlasting commandments you need to lie about?

    In regard to various “Christian Churches.” (This is red herring the LDS constantly throw into your face) Weren’t the Corinthians, Ephesians, Galatians, Philippians, etc, all separate churches? Of course they were. Did membership in those churches save anyone? Did they have the name of Jesus Christ in any of them? Of course the answer is no. Being a member of any church does not save. The Gospel of Jesus Christ saves 1 Cor 15: 1-4. It’s not believing the brother of Lucifer saves you, or someone born in Jerusalem, or membership in any Church – only God knows your heart, not the leader of any Church.

  8. Andy Watson says:


    You call it “bullying”. I call it “testing” – 1 These 5:21 – and “contending for the faith” – Jude 3. Your spin and shell game on the ignorant doesn’t work with me. Just like the LDS Church and it’s GA’s, you don’t have any real answers despite claiming to have them all for the ignorant public. You march off on July 1st to get the answers to the questions I asked on what it would take for me to be a convert confident you would find them in your scriptures. You don’t and instead, as they say in Vegas, “come up craps”. You go AWOL for a month hoping your absence will excuse your apathy, but it didn’t work out the way you wanted.

    I’m dreaming of “fantasy erections”? Well, professor Crisp, all one has to do is look at the reference I gave right from the Mormon scriptures and see it for themselves. It’s a picture on the bottom right corner upside down. If you would have done your homework you would have researched the origins of this and found that it comes from Leyden AMS 62. Egyptologists call it the god “Min”, an ithyphallic god – and Mormons say that it “represents God sitting upon his throne”. That may be your god, but it’s not mine. You want to pray to that god? Not me – Isaiah 40:25!

    If you and the other good Mormons are too lazy to open up their scriptures, look at the picture and then the explanation of what those pictures represent, then expect your apathy and ignorance of the subject matter to be brought to your attention.


    The same goes for you – nice spin. Crisp and you need to get an education on LDS teachings. You: what the Church teaches about “mother in heaven” (read your church manuals); Crisp: the Book of Abraham, Facsimile No.2, Figure 7 and locating in the Bible your “god is an exalted man” doctrine. I’ve got a life – eternal life in Jesus Christ NOW. Can you say the same?

    Are the two of you going to be at “Mormon Night” at Dodger Stadium tonight? This is a big day for MORMONS!!!

  9. falcon says:

    You and the rest of the LDS need to wrap your brains around the fact that you worship a different god than that of Biblical Christianity. As such then it’s a logical conclusion that you’re receiving your “revelation” from a god different from that of the Bible. When we look at the founding prophet of Mormonism we see a dedicated occultist who practiced magic arts and had “spirits” appear to him. I’ve referenced the books by Mormon authors several times times but here we go again; “An Insiders View of Mormon Origins” by Grant Palmer, “Rough Stone Rolling” by Richard Bushman, and Michael Quinn’s “Mormonism and the Magical World View”, and “Temple Manifestations” by Joseph Heinerman. This last one is a gem as it talks about how the spirits of the signers of the Declaration of Independence appeared to one of your prophets to encourage him to get on with the dead dunking ritual.
    The god you worship is one of millions and he was a man who progressed to become a god, right? He has a wife with whom he has endless celestial sex, right? You hope to be just like him some day, right?
    This is the god from whom you receive your “revelation”, right? The fact that you rail against our exposure of the occult nature of Mormonism and the spirits from whom you receive your guidance is testimony to the depth with which you have sunk.
    Andy Watson has pointed out the graphic depiction of the Mormon god. It pretty much goes along with the fertility cult that Joseph Smith with his 33 wives founded. I would think that at some point you’d get it. But you’ve given yourself over to this spirit, your led by his revelations to you, and clinging to the notion that you’re going to become a god keeps you in a cloud of deceit.
    Yea, these are really peripheral issues. Give me a break?

  10. HankSaint says:


    You got books, I got books, every one has books, yet they’re just that, Books with opinions, many different references, different history, and powerful claims as to the why, how and when of a very complex issue, Mormonism. Just because someone can lay claim to several Books does not make any one of them the Bible of Historical Mormonism and all the truths that be.

    You mention, “Rough Stone Rolling”, well I have that book and am about 2/3 of the way through, and you recommend it as what? a book that will convince us that we teach another Jesus? Hardly, it is a Book that actually deals with Joseph History and Character. Another Book, Michael Quinn’s “Mormonism and the Magical World View”, written by a now ex-mormon who has some serious issues that I wish not to discuss. He has another Book, “Same-Sex Dynamics Among Nineteenth-Century Americans: A Mormon Example”.

    Falcon states, “This is the god from whom you receive your “revelation”, right? The fact that you rail against our exposure of the occult nature of Mormonism and the spirits from whom you receive your guidance is testimony to the depth with which you have sunk.

    The great and now late Brigham Young stated, How do we deal with them then? “One of the nicest things in the world is to let an enemy alone entirely, and it mortifies him to death.”

    Woe to those who fight against it [Joseph Smith’s testimony]. What will we do to them? Nothing at all, but preach the Gospel. They may lie about us as they please. If we will faithfully mind our own concerns, live our religion, do good to all men, preach the Gospel to the nations of the earth, gather up the honest in heart, build up and establish Zion in the earth, send the Gospel to the House of Israel, and live and serve God in all things, all will be well with us, we have no cause for fear in the least.


  11. setfree says:

    I appreciate your comments; you’re a welcome addition to Mormon Coffee in my estimation. (Nice to meet you!)

    Same to you.

    I was reminded of you yesterday, and just wanted to ask how things are going for you and with your family? You don’t have to answer if you don’t want to; just know that I’m praying for you.

  12. shematwater says:

    I had to skip a few of the comments made when reading this, as I don’t have time to read them all.

    First I must say a few things to FALCON

    To start with, a question: Why is it that anyone who disagrees with you cannot have intelligence? Why is it that you must attack the thoughts, beliefs, and opinions of anyone who believes differently?
    As to logic and common sense telling us we have a heavenly mother, this is easily taken from the Bible. We are told God is the Father of spirits, that we are Children of the Most High. Christ himself even says “my dFather, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” (John 20: 17)
    Add to this that God has said that all life brings forth according to their own kind (creation account) and we understand we are of the same species as God. As we know that we have a father and mother hear, that both are required, than it follows that, since God is the same species, we must also have a mother.
    Very simple: We are the children of the Father. We are the same species as the Father. Since we require a father and mother to be born, we must also need a Heavenly Mother as well as heavenly Father.

    I know you will disagree with this. I know you do not believe us to be the literal children of God (but have some figurative meaning to such references). However, to say that to believe we are is somehow not biblical, and shows a lack of intelligence, is simply dishonest.

  13. shematwater says:

    Now, ANDY

    I did answer your questions. I will also admit that I got a little hot under that collar with my answers, and I did my best to correct that and give a better and fuller answer.

    Having said this, I still say that the questions you ask are not honest questions, but are set up as traps, which I stupidly walked into. I am more careful now.

    You want things proven by the Bible. The problem is that I do not think that all truth is in the Bible, and the LDS do not teach this idea, as it is false. John writes “And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be awritten every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the bbooks that should be written.” (John 21: 25) Thus there are many things dealing with the mortal ministry of Christ that are not found in the Bible, as there is not room in the Earth to hold such a record.
    If his mortal ministry would fill such volumes, think of the books that would be needed to write all his works, from the biginning of the world till now. It cannot be done, and will not be done.
    For this reason one cannot appeal to the Bible to learn all truth, for it cannot contain all truth.

  14. shematwater says:


    Aside from this are the many references to scriptural works that are not had amoung us today, but were obviously scripture in ancient times. Among them are the book of Gad the seer (1 Chr. 29: 29); book of Nathan the prophet (1 Chr. 29: 29; 2 Chr. 9: 29); prophecy of Ahijah (2 Chr. 9: 29); visions of Iddo the seer (2 Chr. 9: 29; 2 Chr. 12: 15; 2 Chr. 13: 22); sayings of the seers (2 Chr. 33: 19); an epistle of Paul to the Corinthians, earlier than our present 1 Corinthians (1 Cor. 5: 9); possibly an earlier epistle to the Ephesians (Eph. 3: 3); an epistle to the Church at Laodicea (Col. 4: 16); and some prophecies of Enoch, known to Jude (Jude 1: 14).

    All of these were had at one time, and by the way they are spoken of in our current Bible they were great works to be studied to gain a greater understanding of events, prophecies, and commandments. One of these may contain the story of Christ’s marriage. One may expound the doctrine of work for the dead. We cannot know what they contain, but from the Bible we have we can know that what they contain is true and good.

  15. falcon says:

    By proxy you are stating that I have lied about the restored gospel and what you believe. I’d be more than happy to repeat it point by point and have you tell me if it’s not what you believe.
    Do you not have a god other than the God acknowledged by Biblical Christianity? Do you not receive your revelation from this god? Is not your god a man who progressed to becoming a god? Does your god not have wives (plural) and live on a planet near the star Kolob. Did not your beloved Brigham Young teach that this Kolob god came down and had actual sexual relations with Mary from whom Jesus was conceived? Did not your god “birth” jesus and lucifer and does your church not teach they are spirit brothers? Was not your prophet Joseph Smith an occultist who used a magic seer stone by which to defraud people into thinking that he could see buried treasure in the ground (and because of which he was convicted in a court of law)? Is this not the same seer stone that he used to “translate” the BoM?
    I could go on for pages but I’ll get the same Mormon two-step jig that tries to marginalize, minimize and deflect all of this which is true. You know the old “you have books, I have books….” routine.
    The bottom line is that Mormons have tapped into a spiritual force other than the God of the Bible for their “revelation”. From your magic underwear with the occult symbols to your ritualistic seances during which you hope to see spooks of dead people in the Temple, you have chosen the dark path.
    Please don’t patronize me by telling me that these are deep spiritual truths that only those who have reached a megalevel of spiritual enlightenment can understand. You’ve sold out to a false spirit from which you are deluded beyond measure. The fact that you can’t connect the dots says volumes about the status of your lost state.

  16. setfree says:

    Amen, falcon. Thanks for saying it straight out.

  17. falcon says:

    What are you talking about? Have I called you or any other Mormon on this blog dumb or stupid or said that you have less than adequate intelligence? I disagree with you vigorously and with passion regarding Mormonism. This sounds to me like a take on the old Mormon persecution complex.
    First of all in regards to your skills in Biblical interpretation, they are very poor. Logic and common sense tells us we have a heavenly mother? What kind of logic are you referring to, Mormon logic? What kind of rediculous interpretation of the scripture are you suggesting here? This is so typical of Mormon lack of understanding of even the basics of Biblical interpretation. About two weeks ago I went through several posts talking about the process of Biblical hermeneutics that needs to be considered in arriving at a correct understanding of the Biblical text. Your interpretive process accounts for none of the basic principles that keep people from going on nefarious journeys in the never-never-land of idle speculation. It amounts to grab a verse here, grab a verse there, string it together and call it a doctrine.
    Your logic is painful. We call God Our Heavenly Father so in your twisted logic that must mean there’s a heavenly mother and spirit procreation and on and on and on. What kind of nonsense logic and principles of Biblical interpretation are you using. Jesus said, “I am the door.” Was Jesus a door? Jesus said, “I am living water.” Was Jesus water? Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.” Was Jesus real bread? Jesus said that “…if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.” Should you do that literally?
    No wonder you’re so messed-up and will accept anything Mormonism pitches to you. Would you please get out of the Mormon box your thought processes are residing in and do some independent study and thinking?
    I get really exasperated when people won’t go beyond the simplistic slogans, mottos and false notions that are taught down at the wards or on the FAIR and FARMS websites.

  18. Lautensack says:

    Thank you for your reply.
    First it wasn’t 250 major doctrinal differences it was 250 doctrinal differences. No one here is suggesting that something like what instruments to play in church is a major doctrinal difference though it is often a doctrinal difference. Second you refuse to provide your source for the 20,000-30,000 Evangelical Denominations along with a refusal to actually interact with my original comment, rather you simply appeal to ad hominem, tu quoque, and misrepresentation. Not an honest form of argument nor a legitimate one.


  19. HankSaint says:


    By proxy? of course not, I will let Brigham speak for himself. Lying? of course not also. You don’t have enough truth to be able to actually lie. You see Falcon, since you don’t really actually study our religion, your forced to pass on the many aberrations in a very sensationalized manner, but that’s your choice to magnify, manipulate, bend and shape everything this way and that way since there is no actual doctrine explaining any of the peripheral item you so choose to outline. I have already asked you a few times to produce the full text of any of these issues regarding Eternal Progression, fill in all the missing blanks I would be interested in knowing more about Christ and Satan, Heavenly Mother, How God was able to fill Mary with His seed, and how as a General Contractor you can produce the plans for my building my own earth. Frustrating, isn’t it? Why good buddy should I speak on something I know little about, can’t find them in the Standard works and even though I admit there mentioned as small aberrations of doctrine, what could I possibly share with you on the what, how and why. Hmmm, interesting problem for you, since I don’t seem to see any problems.

    Don’t you just love the two- step jig, since I can’t actually in any kind of intellectual way explain any of those things you accuse us of marginalizing. Marginalizing to me is quiet easy, since the doctrine you sensationalize incorrectly, Yes INCORRECTLY, since I can’t find any where where we preach Christ and Lucifer as brothers. If you mean that we believe in a pre-existence, and Christ is also one of Gods spirit children as we all are, then you are the one who is speculating the Lucifer is also your brother and my brother, Hmmm, did I get that right, speculation good buddy.


  20. Joheshua says:


    You are missing the point, big time. You keep using these terms “aberrations, snippets and nuggets” to justify this absurd doctrine. You are implying that simply because you don’t find it in one of the Mormon Standard Works that it is therefore off limits. But that doesn’t work and you know it. Why don’t you man up and admit that these doctrines are more than “snippets and nugget”, that they are not only believed by but also taught by most Mormons. Frankly, I think you are embarrassed that your beloved church believes and teaches these doctrines. And don’t ask me to point to a specific part of a specific Standard Work. That is just a weak argument and I think you know it. But you cling to it with this sense of superiority and smugness that is unbecoming of a Christian. I think deep down you are troubled by these beliefs but fighting those that oppose you on this board makes you feel stronger in your faith. Interesting tactic. I think, in the end, it will fail you.

  21. HankSaint says:

    Small aberration of Doctrine.

    Lets see how this matches up with our Standard works and our teachings.

    1). Principles presented for acceptance or belief.
    2). Dogma, something taught, a teaching.
    3). Corpus of doctrines relating to matters, morality and faith, stated as authoritative.

    The following as we see sensationalized,

    1). Jesus and Lucifer as brothers
    2). God once a man.
    3). Heavenly Mother or mothers, depending on who is sensationalizing.
    4). Richard will someday if worthy, create his own earth. I have been accused of this.
    5). One can not reach the Highest degree in the Celestial world with out practicing Polygamy.
    6). Christ is the Literal Son of God, this is mocked in a blasphemous way.
    6). Etc, etc, etc.

    I would love anyone, Mormon, Guest, Visitor, or Evangelical to show me where in our Meetinghouses, General Conferences, Sunday School Classes, Standard Works, where we teach any of these principles. Not once has my testimony ever been shared where I acknowledge the above. Not once when being interviewed for a Calling, Temple Recommend or even Before one is Baptized has anyone been required to believe the above. The challenge seems to be, show where we teach the above as it is sensationalized in the format I presented, because this is what we are accused of exactly as I wrote it. You suggest that the above is presented for acceptance, false. You state it is Dogma, false. You state it is given by authority, False.

    Missing the point? interesting remark based on what, your borrowed talking points, Hmmm, methinks the embarrassment is your herd mentality of believing false lies. Methinks you do not study our doctrine and fall for every tabloid Sensationalized bit of gossip that fits with your agenda of promoting a lie.

    Just my thoughts,

    Regards, Richard.

  22. Ralph says:

    Sorry HankSaint, but go to

    Gospel Principles – Chapter 3

    When the plan for our salvation was presented to us in the spirit world, we were so happy that we shouted for joy (see Job 38:7).

    We understood that we would have to leave our heavenly home for a time. We would not live in the presence of our heavenly parents. While we were away from them, all of us would sin and some of us would lose our way. Our Heavenly Father knew and loved each one of us. He knew we would need help, so he planned a way to help us.

    We needed a Savior to pay for our sins and teach us how to return to our Heavenly Father. Our Father said, “Whom shall I send?” (Abraham 3:27). Two of our brothers offered to help. Our oldest brother, Jesus Christ, who was then called Jehovah, said, “Here am I, send me” (Abraham 3:27).

    Jesus was willing to come to the earth, give his life for us, and take upon himself our sins. He, like our Heavenly Father, wanted us to choose whether we would obey Heavenly Father’s commandments. He knew we must be free to choose in order to prove ourselves worthy of exaltation. Jesus said, “Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever” (Moses 4:2).

    Satan, who was called Lucifer, also came, saying, “Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor” (Moses 4:1). Satan wanted to force us all to do his will. Under his plan, we would not be allowed to choose. He would take away the freedom of choice that our Father had given us. Satan wanted to have all the honor for our salvation.

    Also in the Primary 6: Old Testament manual lesson 2 discusses this principle, as do the scripture readers mainly D&C and BoM. So this is taught quite explicitly to our children as well as investigators and converts.

  23. Andy Watson says:

    Ralph, thanks for intervening here with some references for Hank. I was hoping an LDS Church member would step in here and say something to one of their own. Yesterday I had to give Hank numerous sources from LDS Church Manuals that refer to “Mother” in heaven. I would take Hank up on his offer and do a document dump, but I find this to be so absurd and ridiculous as to not warrant my time. I mean seriously…this is laughable. When I read the post above I thought this must be a joke. Every one of those tenets mentioned above by Hank are firm teachings of the LDS Church that everyone knows about. Ralph, what is going on? Why and how can Church members be this ignorant of fundamental church teachings such as these?

    Hank, please…get serious. Like I said earlier: get an LDS education. If you haven’t been to LDS Institue, then please enroll. If you have already been, then please go back. Please stop while you are behind. You’re making the LDS Church education department look incompetent.

    Lastly, yesterday you included the church manuals in your list of suitable references to prove a point. I see today that you have removed that from the list. Is that because you found you were in error on the LDS teaching of “Mother”? Anyway, this isn’t Hankonism – it’s Mormonism. The Institute manuals are printed and distributed by the Church. They have the Church stamp on the back. They are official. They are used to educate the young Mormon minds who are there on what the Church believes, no? Yes, it’s true. Why would the LDS Church put forth material to its people that is not authoritative or official on what it believes? Please…good grief…it’s just common sense. This is the world wide web. Mormons around the world are reading what you are writing and laughing. Please stop the madness! Start reading your church manuals!

    Ralph, please schedule an “LDS education intervention” via satellite from Australia ASAP for Hank.

  24. DaveyMike says:

    HankSaint said: “show me where in our Meetinghouses, General Conferences, Sunday School Classes, Standard Works, where we teach any of these principles”
    I agree that critics of the Church may sensationalize these doctrines, but as a life-long member of the Church, I and others have discussed the veracity of each of these doctrines one or more times in our Meetinghouses.
    For example, I don’t know how many times in Elders Quorum or High Priest Group we have joked about how things would be different on the world(s) we create. Heck (oops my Utah upbringing showing), I remember that Camilla Kimball (wife of the late prophet Spencer W. Kimball) once commented about her fear of snakes and that on her world there would be none.
    I don’t know how many times I have sung in our Meetinghouses the hymn “O My Father” which says it is only logical that we have a Heavenly Mother.
    etc, etc.
    Again, the tone of the critics can be over the top but it might be explained by their shock at doctrines that are so contrary to Biblical teachings.
    I hope I can always give “an answer to every man…with meekness and fear” (1 Peter 3:15) but to deny that these doctrines are not part of the fabric of Mormonism is wrong. Some of them may be a thread; others may be whole cloth.

  25. Ralph says:


    I have said often that I am here to give the truth about our church. If that means pulling up a member of the church then so be it – I have done this a few times in the past. But in saying that, I don’t know everything and sometimes I either misunderstand the doctrine or misrepresent it. In these cases I hope that another LDS will set me straight as well. Of the list that HankSaint gave, I only have issues with number 6 when it comes to misrepresentation of the LDS doctrine. Yes we believe that Jesus is the literal (place in here genetic) Son of God, but as to His conception, there is no official doctrine. I know that there have been past teachings that can be interpreted as a physical union, but there is nothing explicitly stating this concept, nor has there been in our doctrine. But that’s my stance and its been argued many times on this blog.

    I do agree with both HankSaint and DaveyMike that these doctrines are sensationalised and blown out of proportion by LDS critics, but that is because they (you) have their own agendum which is to fight against what they see as false doctrines in order to bring others to what they see as God’s true path. We see it in reverse, we see the critics grossly misrepresenting our doctrine and beliefs and so we tone it down to bring people to an understanding of the doctrine at a basic level and we do this to bring prople to what we hold as God’s only true path to salvation.

    Only one of us is correct – I agree and accept this. But I believe and have my evidence that I am in the correct path so I will do my best to represent that path on this site.

  26. falcon says:

    I think the little ditty “if you want to know about Mormonism, ask a Mormon” is pretty funny in light of the fact that Mormons don’t seem to have a firm grasp on what their religion teaches which is the topic of this thread. We are told that we sensationalize their doctrine and teachings. Well I say, then clear it up Mormons. How can you teach or expound on something you are basically ignorant of yourselves. Mormons put these half-baked ideas out there that they don’t understand themselves and then accuse us of misrepresenting them. Your prophets and apostles are miserable representatives of their calling if they can’t articulate their own doctrine.
    Mormons are products of the god from whom they receive their revelation. We’ve established firmly that the prophet-founder of Mormonism was an occultist and that the church’s rituals, have as a goal, contact with spirit beings. Mormonism rejects the Cross of Christ as a symbol of their faith but embraces occult symbols that are proudly displayed on temples. We have established firmly that Joseph Smith rejected the God of the Bible for another god, who is a sinful man who progressed to his current status by a works righteousness program. Mormon men hope to attatin the status of gods.
    When Christians receive revelation from God, it is from the God of the Bible. The One, eternal, never changing, God. It is obvious who the Mormon god is as reflected in the teachings of Joseph Smith, subsequent prophets, and also as it is reflected in Mormonism’s symbols and rituals. Mormons have rejected God and the depth of the delusion keeps them from knowing Him in a personal way. It’s not that God hasn’t revealed Himself to them. They have chosen to shut him out in favor of a god of their own making.

  27. setfree says:

    Falcon has, on this thread twice already, given a nice straight forward summary of why it is not possible for Christians to accept Joseph Smith et al.
    You said “But I believe and have my evidence that I am in the correct path”
    Will you share your evidence?
    If only one (side) of us can be correct, this would be worth hashing out, right?

  28. HankSaint says:

    Thank you Ralph, I apparently missed that one, have you got anything on the other small aberrations of doctrine I mentioned.

    This principle is taught along with the principle of pre-existence.

    “When the plan for our salvation was presented to us in the spirit world, we were so happy that we shouted for joy”.

    The teaching of Christ being our elder brother, and Lucifer who at one time was consider “son of the morning”,

    “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Isaiah 14:12

    Pre-existence is taught in the Bible:

    The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.
    I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.
    When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.
    Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth:
    While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.
    When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:
    When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:
    When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
    Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;
    Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men. (Proverbs 8:22-31,

  29. HankSaint says:


    Some of them may be a thread; others may be whole cloth.

    Yes, I’m sure we do talk about the small aberrations in our class, but if we do not have the fulness of the doctrine, we are left to speculate, which Hinckely clearly pointed out can be dangerous and lead to apostasy.


  30. falcon says:

    Does my personal spiritual experience and divine revelation from God count in your world? If I where to give you a detailed account of how someone laid hands on me, that I spoke in tongues and then interpreted that message supernaturally by the power of God, testifying as to who Jesus is, the process by which He became a man, the finished work at the Cross and his imminent return; and if I can produce a witness who will testify to this plus testify that this occurance was in direct response from God to a prayer the witness made on my behalf to God months previously without my having knowledge of it, will you leave Mormonism and follow the God of the Bible to whom I testify.
    Or Ralph, I can write you a scholarly paper with references and an annotated bibliograpy if you like. How many pages will make it count as evidence in your world? I’ll take the time and make the effort on your behalf if it will bring you to that place where you are willing to reject the god of Mormonism and embrace the God of the Bible.
    We can go either way on this Ralph. I’m willing to spend as much time and effort as it takes to bring you to an understanding of who God is. But I think that Andy Watson spent considerable time and effort with you in another venue walking you through all of this. I don’t know, maybe you want to test my knowledge also on the topic? Maybe that’s the point of your request. But I’d suggest instead, you pick-up a good book on the topic like Josh McDowell’s “Evidence That Demands a Verdict” or anything by Lee Strobel. Either author provides a good primer on the subject. The Christian bookstores are jammed-packed with volumes on the topic and I’m a firm believer in the adage that “if I tell you something you can doubt me, but if you say it it’s true.”

  31. HankSaint says:

    Falcon, you just don’t get it.

    The Necessity of Keeping the Doctrine Pure.

    “I have spoken before about the importance of keeping the doctrine of the Church pure, and seeing that it is taught in all of our meetings. I worry about this. Small aberrations in doctrinal teaching can lead to large and evil falsehoods” (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley.

    The other little ditty is, if you want to know about Mormonism ask any Evangelical who borrows all his/her talking points from his/her favorite anti-Book.

    I find it humorous that you state as fact and evidence, “We’ve established firmly that the prophet-founder of Mormonism was an occultist”.

    You have seriously mistaken this for a established agenda driven talking point.

    Most Evangelicals when asked the how, what and why of there convictions, answer the question not by stating it was revelation, but that they were led to the Bible, where God reveals his truths. Hmmm, doesn’t sound like revelation to me Falcon.


  32. Michael P says:


    A direct and simple question that I’d like an answer to: do you understand Christianity any and if not, do you have any desire to understand it? And by understanding it, I mean accurately knowing what we believe?

    Do not pretend to get upset when you think we manipulate your faith while you manipulate ours. This is called hypocrasy.

  33. HankSaint says:

    “Salvation cannot come without revelation [and I am not now speaking about the revelation that gave the dispensation in which we live—I am speaking of personal revelation to individuals]; it is vain for anyone to minister without it. No man is a minister of Jesus Christ without being a prophet. No man can be a minister of Jesus Christ except he has a testimony of Jesus; and this is the spirit of prophecy. Whenever salvation has been administered, it has been by testimony. Men of the present time testify of heaven and hell, and have never seen either; and I will say that no man knows these things without this.” (Teachings, p. 160.)

  34. Michael P says:


    Great quote, but so what?

  35. falcon says:

    You are very typical of Mormons I’ve encountered out here on Mormon Coffee in the almost two years since I’ve begun posting (on this site). That is you can’t point to anything I, or for that matter any of the other Chirsitans writers present and tell us specifically were we get it wrong about Mormonism. Now you’re into snippets and anti books as a form of deflection and I’ve yet to see a substative rebuttal.
    Andy Watson listed several points of documentation for you, and you just continue to mutter on as if it wasn’t presented at all. Even your fellow Mormon Ralph provided documentation showing where you are wrong. I’m having a tough time believing that you’re even a Mormon. It’s deflect, minimize, maginalize; do the snippets and peripheral routine, but that’s about as deep as you go. I’d think after what Ralph presented you’d have been more than a little embarrassed.
    Those of us who write here have studied Mormonism and taken it a part and examined it. There’s nothing that deep or complicated about Mormonism. When presented with documentation Mormons run away. Andy Watson literally had a man who showed up at his house with the missionaries wave off Andy’s extensive Mormon library stocked with official Mormon publications; and wouldn’t even look at what Andy had for support. The guy bolted out the door (in anger) without closing it insisting all the way out that Mormons did not teach progression to godhood. It’s experiences like these that lead us to believe that Mormons aren’t interested in examining anything that’s going to upset the perfectly little world they’ve created in their minds.

  36. HankSaint says:

    Thanks Falcon,

    I always though I was a typical Mormon, and not one of those over the top who thinks that Polygamy should still be practiced and that the small aberrations of doctrine have to be defended.

    You state I can’t specifically state anything you got wrong, well how about stating Joseph Smith committed adultery, with out any hard evidence or proof.

    1). You state the Book of Mormon was Plagiarized, and even your own Tom Donfrio has to admit and I quote, “Plagiarism is hard to prove”.
    2). You state that the 11 witnesses never had viewed the Book of Mormon or turned it’s pages of Brass, or saw a angel.
    3). You state that Mormons cannot enter into the highest degree of glory with out practicing Mormonism
    4). You state that The Pearl of Great Price, the Book of Abraham was translated from the remaining fragments the Church has in it
    5). You state that we don’t believe in the Jesus Christ found in the Bible.
    6). You state, there is no evidence of the places where Book of Mormon speaks of.

    I can go on and on, but this is some of the neat stuff you stumble over all the time, quoting from worn out Anti-Books that lack any real research or hared evidence.

    I’m not embarrassed at all good buddy, I erred and at lest admitted it, hmmm, seems a lot of Evangelicals get there fannies kicked and move on to the next great and newest talking point that someone else feeds them. Moving on is a great term for deflection.

    Carl Mosser and Paul Owen
    We realize that what we say will not be welcomed by all, especially by some in the counter-cult movement. Some may criticize us for giving the Mormons too much credit and for being too harsh on our fellow evangelicals. However, much like testifying against a loved one in court, we cannot hide the facts of the matter. In this battle the Mormons are fighting valiantly. And the evangelicals? It appears that we may be losing the battle and not knowing it. But this is a battle we canno

  37. HankSaint says:

    ” But this is a battle we cannot afford to lose. It is our deep hope that this paper will, in some small way, serve to awaken members of the evangelical community to the important task at hand.

    A third conclusion we have come to is that currently there are, as far as we are aware, no books from an evangelical perspective that responsibly interact with contemporary LDS scholarly and apologetic writing.(3) In a survey of twenty recent evangelical books criticizing Mormonism we found that none interact with this growing body of literature. Only a handful demonstrate any awareness of pertinent works. Many of the authors promote criticisms that have long been refuted; some are sensationalistic while others are simply ridiculous. A number of these books claim to be “the definitive” book on the matter. That they make no attempt to interact with contemporary LDS scholarship is a stain upon the authors’ integrity and causes one to wonder about their credibility”.

    Hey Falcon, these are your guys, these are scholars that know quiet a bit more then Coffee Drinkers. So keep drinking the Kool-Aid, your only allowing us to show investigators that we Preach one Doctrine and the Evangelicals are stating what they think that Doctrine is to the benefit of allowing us to correct and add even more as we keep on converting more and more Evangelicals.

  38. setfree says:

    I’ve seen some of the stuff that etc, puts out, and from what I’ve seen so far, I can summarize it as dishonest. What I mean by that is that the folks work very hard to pull together pieces of evidence that seem to say what the LDS want to hear, sorta gloss over things that seem contrary in nature, and give an overall “it’s okay, we’re handling this” idea to the LDS population. But they are hardly giving the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

    So, if I can summarize your quote above, it looks like EV’s have not responded to all of the stuff folks like FAIR have done.

    I’m not entirely sure that it is necessary, but I agree that it wouldn’t hurt if there were as many ev’s hunting down the pro-Mormon stuff written, and shedding the light on it.

    “Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.”

  39. HankSaint says:


    How about FARM’s then, I suggest that if you want to talk about being d——t, how about the Tanners. Seems our Apologist have pretty much speared them time and time again.

    The evangelical world needs to wake up and respond to contemporary Mormon scholarship. If not, we will lose the battle without ever knowing it. Our suggestions are as follows: First, evangelicals need to overcome inaccurate presuppositions about Mormonism. Second, evangelical counter-cultists need to refer LDS scholarship that is beyond their ability to rebut, to qualified persons. Third, evangelical academians need to make Mormonism, or some aspects of it, an area of professional interest. Fourth, evangelical publishers need to cease publishing works that are uninformed, misleading or otherwise inadequate. Fifth, scholars in the evangelical community ought to collaborate in several books addressing the issues raised in this paper. Related to this, professional journals should encourage articles on these same topics. Finally, might we suggest that members of organizations such as the Evangelical Theological Society consider forming Mormonism Study Groups. The fact is that the growth of Mormonism is outpacing even the highest predictions of professional sociologists of religion, and is on its way, within eighty years, to becoming the first world-religion since Islam in the seventh century. With such growth, the needs expressed in this paper will become ever more pressing as the twenty-first century approaches.

  40. setfree says:

    Who did you just quote this time?

    You know, I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before, but the “defense on home territory” often works harder than the offense on the same.

    What I’m saying is, evangelicals are everywhere, trying to reach the lost for Christ. That we are on Mormon territory is no wonder, since Christ has His hand out to Mormons too.

    Your “defensive” efforts do not mean that you are correct. Nor does it mean that the LDS is the “true church” because you put in so much defensive work. Rather, it means that you do not want to lose.

    Well, if you’d “lose your life” for Jesus, He’d give you the one He’s trying to give you. That’s all any of the ev’s have done. Lost their life and had Jesus replace it.

    Good night

  41. falcon says:

    I guess what I’m going to have to do is do a document dump on you as Andy Watson would say. I don’t really get your third conclusion. What you seem to be saying is that those investigating the claims of Mormonism should read Mormon commentaries. I think you need to take a little trip out to Utah Lighthouse Ministry for example and some of the others because all that they use is Mormon sources for their information. You seem to be saying that what Christian writers should do is get into the work of the LDS hacks who have been known to whitewash the facts surrounding Mormonism. That’s why ev. Christian writers don’t mess with the LDS “scholarship”. Go and pick-up Grant Palmer’s “An Insiders View of Mormom Origins”. He’s a Mormon. You’ll find support for what’s being discussed here.
    Michael Quinn was in the vault. He got the straight scoop. Mormons have gone after him for reasons other than his scholarship which they can’t refute.
    I would suggest you take the fifty minutes or so and go and listen/watch the presentation by John P. Dehlin:

    Dehlin’s a Mormon. I get a kick out of his conclusion but at least he’s got his facts straight and isn’t trying to dodge anything.

    You also need to listen to the interview Dehlin did with Grant Palmer at:

    That takes longer to listen to, but worth the time.

    You made a list of things we/I supposedly get wrong and that’s all it is; is a list of things you believe. If you don’t believe Smith was having sex with those married women, you are truly naive. I suppose none of the polygamists were having sex with the multiple women they were “married” to. And if you don’t believe Smith was a dedicated occultist and was indeed convicted of defrauding people by claiming to be able to see treasure hidden in the ground, you’re a denier beyond help. I don’t know what they’re putting in the Kool Aid down at the Wards but it isn’t truth serum!

  42. Andy Watson says:


    You’re in violation of LDS Articles of Faith #8: you’re not translating the Bible correctly. In this case I will not advise you to go to LDS Institute to learn the Bible, but rather attend a real Christian school of higher learning in correctly handing the Word of God (2 Tim 2:15).

    You’re take on Proverbs 8:22-31 doesn’t fit. Here is the problem and it’s the usual one: CONTEXT. What is the context/subject? It’s WISDOM – Proverbs 8:1. Proverbs 8:12: “I wisdom”. Proverbs 8:14: “I am understanding”.

    If we are going to apply your view to it referring to individual people in a supposed preexistence, then we have to look at Proverbs 8:1-3 where the words “her” and “she” are used in reference to wisdom. Did the Mormon god only procreate females in the preexistence? If so, how do you account for yourself? I know…I know…what about Jeremiah 1:5: “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee”. Does it say, in referring to Jeremiah, “You knew me”? No, it’s only one way. God knew there was going to be a Jeremiah. It doesn’t say Jeremiah knew God before he was born. In Christianity we call that omniscience – knowing all things past, present and future.

    You might also notice that “formed thee in the belly” doesn’t fit with LDS theology. Please look at Zechariah 12:1. The spirit of man is formed in the belly just like it says in Jeremiah 1:5. The context of Jeremiah 1:5 is Jeremiah’s preordination to a special ministry.

    Lastly, I will accept contemporary Mormon sources such as Millet and Robinson the day that they are made LDS General Authorities rather than BYU professors who have no LDS Church authority. Therefore, what they say is “just their opinion and is non-binding”. Sound familiar?

  43. Andy Watson says:


    Let me get this straight. I asked you to define or show from the Bible, or even the Book of Mormon for that matter, Joseph Smith’s “first principle of the gospe” in that god is an exalted man and you call that a “trap”? You’ve got to be kidding. Asking you to show me from scripture the nature of your god is a trap? That should be a red flag for you and any other Mormon that is half-way awake! You say you are going to have to be more careful in the future to not walk into that one. Here it goes, and I know you hate it, but that is pathetic.

    Here is a challenge: walk into your local Baptist church or any other real Christian church and ask them who is God? They will tell you that God is Spirit – John 4:24. A spirit does not have flesh and bones – Luke 24:39.

    Hank to the Baptist deacon at the door: “Is your God a Spirit and if so, please show that to me from the Bible?”

    Baptist deacon: “Stop right there, young man! You will not come around here asking such questions. Those are traps!”

    You think that is what is going to happen? You need to get dialed in and snap out of it. Myself and any other true Christian would leap for joy to show anyone in the Bible especially a Mormon exactly who God is in the Bible. There are no traps or trap questions about anything of any kind. There are no secrets and nothing is held back. It’s the “full enchilada” the minute you walk in the door.

    Asking you if you have been forgiven of all your sins is a “trap” too? The same as stated above applies here as well. The Baptist deacon at the door will be more than happy to show you 1 John 1:9 and Hebrews 10:17. Traps? No, it’s a “trap” in Mormonism when the LDS Church has given them doctrines that can’t be reconciled or located in Holy Scripture. Instead they are left to “wing it” and that is not pathetic – it’s sad.

  44. falcon says:

    So Boys and Girls let’s play Hank’s game. We’ve been down this road before with various Mormons who have come and gone from this site; disappeared back into the fantasy of their own Mormon mind-set and the comfort of the Mormon wards.
    Over the past several years, Mormons by the truck load have succumed to shaken faith syndrome upon learning that the Mormon church was not telling them the truth regarding prophet Smith’s technique and process of “translating” the BoM. According to Mormon Inc.’s approved deception, the prophet used something called the Urim and Thummin and gold plates on a table to deceipher the reformed Egyptian script. And then the faithful found out that that really isn’t how the deed was done.
    Russell Nelson wrote an article titled “A treasured Testament” which can be found on (if the authorities haven’t taken it down.) The faith-disrupting quote which has caused many Mormons to have shaken faith syndrome is as follows:
    “Joseph Smith would put the seer stone into a hat, and put his face in the hat, drawing it closely around his face to exclude the light; and in the darkness the spiritual light would shine. A piece of something resembling parchment would appear, and on that appeared the writing. One character at a time would appear, and under it was the interpretation in English. Brother Joseph would read off the English to Oliver Cowdery, who was his principal scribe, and when it was written down and repeated to Brother Joseph to see if it was correct, then it would disappear, and another character with the interpretation would appear. Thus the Book of Mormon was translated by the gift and power of God, and not by any power of man.” (published in the July 1993 Ensign)
    So why doesn’t the Mormon church teach members and potential converts the truth about how Smith translated the BoM? Well number one, it’s weird! Number two it’s laughable. Number three, this is the same magic stone the occultist Smith used to hunt for buried treasure!

  45. joe_cross says:

    truth does not change… the circumstances around which truth operates however changes a lot down here on earth… so understanding truth and its application seems more relevant for the individual and the cause for leaving judgments to Christ seems obvious to me .. making peace with disillusionment while preserving personal Faith is paramount….other wise the easily offended will take the cause of offense as excuses for evil and faithlessness. Which could and often does lead to destruction and violence ect…

  46. shematwater says:


    I read your reply to me, and have carefully considered how to answer it. After much thought I give the following:

    You said: “Have I called you or any other Mormon on this blog dumb or stupid or said that you have less than adequate intelligence?”
    While you have not made direct comments of such, you have implied such with almost all your posts.

    You follows this statement with “your skills in Biblical interpretation, they are very poor” and “What kind of logic are you referring to, Mormon logic?”
    While you make no direct statements, such words as these make your opinion of my intelligence, as well as LDS in general, very obvious, which is to say you consider me and all LDS ignorant, stupid, uneducated fools.
    I will admit that I at times have made similar remarks, but not in regards to others beliefs (as far as I remember). While I disagree I do see how an intelligent person can come to the conclusions and beliefs that others have.

    As to what you said concerning my interpretation of the Scriptures, you argue “Jesus said, “I am the door.” Was Jesus a door? Jesus said, “I am living water.” Was Jesus water? Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.” Was Jesus real bread? Jesus said that “…if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.” Should you do that literally?”

    It is also said that Jesus is the Christ, that he is the savior of all mankind, that he is our Lord. I suppose none of this is literal either.

    Show me how what I say cannot be true, not how your methods show it untrue. Show how the Bible cannot mean what I said, not how your interpretation and doctrine says it cannot.

    You method of interpretation, as far as I am concerned, is a load of hooey. It is the learning of men, not of God. The only way to understand anything that is taught in any of the scriptures is through the devine inspiration of the spirit, not through a man made system.

  47. HankSaint says:


    John P. Dehlin, thanks for the useful tip on his commentary of all things good and bad about Mormonism. Not black and white, but more shades of color his his premise. Would not be surprised to find he is a card carrying and full paying member of Sunstone. Tip off is his, “Forget True and Consider Good”, remark about his belief and convictions of LDS doctrine and testimony of what is the truth. Another is, “What will bring you Joy”, all else is really not essential. Of course there is the Biblical Scripture of the rich man:

    Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
    And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.”

    And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

    Yes, what ever will bring you the most joy, forget about the prophets, forget about truth, what is most important is just consider the good and enjoy life, the Commandments of God are not essential or important.

    For your information good buddy, I do not think Joseph Smith a perfect man, I have studied both sides of the divide and walked away more fully convinced that LDS doctrine is true, that there are small aberrations of doctrine, that LDS history is quiet well documented and at the same time sketchy in some other areas. All the problems brought up in the commentary are problems I have also dealt with, yet I cannot deny the testimony of the Holy Ghost as it was revealed to me.

    Richard 🙂

  48. falcon says:

    Come on Shemwater, lighten up. Can’t you read between the lines?

    I must admit that I lose patience when I’ve been through all of this previously. You have to have a systematic approach to interpreting scripture or you’ll get off on all sorts of tangents that have no basis in scriptural intent or meaning. Why do you think we end-up with those snake handling sects because they read Mark 16:18 and think they’re suppose to actually let snakes crawl all over them in their church services.
    I went through all of this before but I’ll take another crack at it. Here are the guidelines for accurate Biblical interpretation.
    1. Context rules: Context means “that which goes with the text.” Consider each verse in the light of the surrounding verses, the book in which it is found the entire Word of God. Ask the question; Is my interpretation of a particular section of Scripture consistent with the theme, purpose, and structure of the book in which it is found? Is it consistent with other Scripture about the same subject, or is there a glaring difference? Am I considering the historic and cultural context of what is being said? Never take a Scriture out of its context to make it say what you want it to say.
    2. Always seek the FULL counsel of the Word of God. Never accept a teaching simply because someone has used one or two isolated verses to support it.
    3. Scripture will never contradict Scripture. The best interpretation of Scripture is Scripture. The Bible is inspired by God; it is God-breathed.
    4. Don’t base your convictions on an obscure passage of Scripture.
    5. Consider what is being said in light of literary style i.e. historical, prophetic, biogrqaphical, didactic, poetic, epistle, proverbial. Learn to recognize literary devices such as “allegory”. Parables, for example, are interpreted differently than an allegory.

  49. falcon says:

    One of the real problems of Mormonism is that it has no systematic theology. It’s all over the ballpark and it’s that way because of what Mormons think is the most attractive feature of their religion; continuous revelation. That’s really the subject of this thread. It’s the reason Mormonism looks so totally flakey and was liken to a maze by Walter Martin author of “Kingdon of the Cults”. I suggest you pick-up this book and read the section on Mormonism. Not only is Mormonism unsystematic but it is contradictory. Why do you think you get all those weirdos running all over Utah thinking they’re the latest shinning object in the world of prophetic revelation.
    You guys are in a free flow of blue sky speculation and free associative consciousness. You believe what you believe because you desire to believe it. It makes you feel good. It doesn’t have to make sense or be consistent. The Mormon god, who use to be a man, is revealing it all to you; a very dangerous path to walk down but it makes the adherent feel oh so special and connected to the supernatural.
    I’ll stick with the God of the Bible. It would behove you to get to know Him. It’s never going to happen within Mormonism.

  50. falcon says:

    You are a funny fellow indeed. I actually did LOL at your comments. Your locked in. Good luck to you. I think you’re one of the folks that won’t make it out. It is indeed a pity.
    I see you ignored the “magic rock in the hat” article in the July 1993 Ensign. I gave you what you asked for and you ignored it. The Mormon church has clearly lied at least by omission, and for good reason. I laid it out for you clear as a bell right from your own publication.
    As the doctors say in hopeless cases, “I can do no more for this patient”.

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