The July 2009 issue of A Shield & Refuge Ministry Newsletter mentioned an interesting facet of LDS temple ordinances — that of proxy work done on behalf of excommunicated fundamentalist polygamists.
On June 2nd (2009) the Salt Lake Tribune ran a story about recent findings discovered by non-Mormon genealogical researcher Helen Radkey. The Salt Lake Tribune reported,
“Prominent fundamentalist Mormons, most of whom were excommunicated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for practicing polygamy while they were alive, have been posthumously re-baptized in LDS temples, a Salt Lake City researcher says.
“Helen Radkey said in a new report that she obtained church records on 20 fundamentalists — from murderer Ervil LeBaron to Joseph Musser to Rulon Jeffs — showing that they’ve been baptized and have had their plural marriages ‘sealed’ for time and eternity by proxy LDS members, one as recently as this year.” (The article, “Polygamous fundamentalists baptized by proxy into LDS Church, researcher says,” is in the Salt Lake Tribune archives and can be downloaded for a fee. However, the entire article can also be found at the ICSA website.)
On Mormon Curtain Ms. Radkey has detailed her research findings, including names, dates and historical background information on many of the fundamentalists for whom LDS temple work has been performed. For example,
“Rulon Clark Allred was born into a polygamous family in the Mexican state of Chihuahua. Allred’s decision to take plural wives came in his twenties following what he described as a vision. That decision resulted in the estrangement of his first wife, Katherine Lucy Handy, whom he had been sealed to in the Salt Lake (LDS) Temple in 1926. Allred was excommunicated from the LDS Church in 1940 for practicing polygamy. In 1941, his plural wives were also cut off from the Church… Allred was murdered in his office in Murray, Utah, on May 10, 1977, on the orders of Ervil LeBaron, the head of a rival polygamous group. At the time of his death, Allred was the husband of at least seven wives, the father of forty-eight children, and the spiritual leader of thousands of Mormon fundamentalists. Although the 1926 marriage sealing between Allred and Handy was annulled in 1942–Handy remarried in 1940–online IGI records still display the original 1926 sealing. Several of these records also list Mabel Finlayson, a plural wife of Allred, as an additional spouse. …Allred was posthumously baptized as recently as January 29, 2009 in the Ogden Utah Temple. He was previously baptized in 2001, 2002, and 2008. He was endowed and sealed to his parents in 2002 and 2008. Mormons gave plural marriage for Rulon Allred a recent thumbs up-when he was sealed by proxy to two of his wives, Ruth Rachel Barlow, and Ethel Jessop, on December 16, 2008 in the Ogden Utah Temple…”
A Shield & Refuge Ministry asks, “Why does the LDS Church condemn the practice of polygamy by Mormon fundamentalists, while at the same time, their temple system accepts deceased Mormon fundamentalists and many of their plural marriages?” That’s a good question.
It has long been understood within Mormonism that polygamy will be practiced to some degree in eternity. Three current Mormon apostles have been eternally sealed in the temple to two women each (Dallin Oaks, L. Tom Perry, and Russell M. Nelson are all widowers who have been remarried for time and eternity). But the polygamy of Mormon fundamentalists is quite different. Unlike the Mormon apostles who have but one living wife at a time, the fundamentalists have multiple living wives, and that in defiance of the laws of the Church and the land.
The polygamy of Rulon Allred (and so many others) was a sin requiring excommunication from the LDS Church. These men never repented in life. If they do so in death, according to Mormonism, their forfeited Church-membership blessings may be returned to them. Additionally, because of vicarious temple ordinances their (illegal) plural wives will be theirs for all eternity as well. They will (perhaps) become Gods and reign forever with their wives in their polygamous kingdoms.
Joseph Smith reportedly taught that the “dominion and powr” of a man’s eternal glory was directly tied to the number of wives and children he gained in mortality (see Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma, 99; Compton, In Sacred Loneliness, 10-11). LDS author Todd Compton summarized,
“Thus in Smith’s Nauvoo ideology, a fullness of salvation depended on the quantity of family members sealed to a person in this life” (In Sacred Loneliness, 11, emphasis in the original).
How does all this fit together for the excommunicated Mormon fundamentalists and their wives? It appears they may gain a greater eternal glory than those faithful Mormons who obeyed the prophet and lived monogamously.
Did you notice that over on the left side of the page, he addresses other issues like the different ‘proofs’ for the Bible, its consistency and single message and so forth? Just wanted to point that out for the other readers as well. It’s some really well thought out material.
Anybody who hasn’t seen the video “Lifting the Veil on Polygamy”, I recommend it:
I did check out the rest of the site. It looks to have some great stuff. I’d recommend all take a look, too.
I have not seen that video, but will check it out.
Actually it was not Greek theology since it was fist taught in the 2nd century by a Greek Scientist. His theory was that earth was the center if the system and that everything else orbited around earth in sphere of increasing perfection. Galileo was the one who upset the Christian Table and confused both the members and the Church dogma which now was frantically trying to figure out how to incorporate all of this into what was consider inerrant doctrine. The current teachings were that earth was the center and heaven was the firmament or realm above which was beyond what man could somewhat see. If true, then how could they prove God existed at all? So the question for Evangelicals, does Doctrine change with Science, or does science take a back seat to Doctrine. In this case, Christians had to catch up to science and incorporate these new finding into the nature of God, Creation, also existing materials might be eternal and never-ending as the Universe is shown to be ever expanding with no end in sight. So do we have a God who creates the universe or who organizes the universe. I believe it’s obvious that God our Father works with in the chaos of the unorganized Universe and organizes it to expand his Glory and Righteousness. “this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39)
Oh my. Hank, do you know about what ancient beliefs were about sun gods, don’t you? The sun riding in boats, or in a chariot, or some other mode of transportation, right? They rode, where? Around the earth, right? So, your attempt to make this an exclusive Christian belief falls short.
You also attempt, in one of your last questions, to say that God must be either a God who created the universe, or one who organizes it. You ask as if they must be separate tasks, and that God cannot possible do both. But why can’t God do both? Indeed, he can, does, and did.
I’m also curious as to how we went from talking about the canon to discussing mythology. Are you going to topics where you feel more comfortable?
Not at all Michael, I have been pointing out obvious problems with Creedal Christians and their firm belief that your doctrine based on a inerrant Bible and Scripture has had to marginalize and retract known doctrine to fit there round block in to a very square hole whenever confronted with new scientific findings, or look like dunces when the rest of the world is progressing down the road of squaring man made Creeds, precepts and theories with Scientific evidence. When does the changing quit and the doctrine stand firm?
Never said it was exclusive, any historian knows that myths, stories, folklore play a small part in ones beliefs and interpretations of scripture, But when a major doctrine such as the belief in a small universe, with you being at the center of it, and then realizing that you can’t anymore disclaim what is obvious is the same as you holding to the unscientific belief that Ex Nihilo, and six days of creation is really believable. Stubbornness is one thing, but complete ignorance of facts, and hard evidence is, well, really amazing.
I feel most comfortable with any topic, unless you bring up small aberrations in our doctrine that we don’t teach much about since we know very little about them.
Regards, Richard 🙂
Ralph, thanks for answering my questions in “shotgun” style and being honest enough to state that it’s not authoritative and some of the other you were unclear.
Hank/Richard said: “I feel most comfortable with any topic, unless you bring up small aberrations in our doctrine that we don’t teach much about since we know very little about them.”
That’s convenient…what a cop-out. Mormons like Richard spend a lot of time blasting Christianity because they can’t explain “ex nihilo” (Gen 1:1) in terms of an instruction manual in bookstores that state how God created the world “out of nothing”. However, when it comes to issues that Mormons have no answer for and can’t explain basic tenets of Mormonism it’s all supposed to be okay with this convenient phrase of “small aberrations in our doctrine”.
Hank, that’s a nice phrase. Maybe you could petition your bishop to take that up the ladder and have that made as an authoritative statement, ok? I kind of like the old saying: “It hasn’t been revealed yet”. I can swallow that one a little better. The LDS Church has creeds too. There are 13 of them in the back of the LDS scriptures: Articles of Faith. That’s what creeds are: statements of faith. I have so many questions about the nature of the Mormon god that I want to ask or have asked and Mormons have no answer for them.
Hank, keep talking…you’re credibility is at drain level right now. The thread is open on the nature of God to discuss it. You’ve got options. You chose none of them. You just want to rant.
Professor Richard, while you are trying to wrap your mind around ex nihilo, I’d like for you to think of how you can explain to us how two physical beings (Mormon god & his wife: heavenly parents) procreate near Kolob and the offspring is a spirit – no body. I don’t get it. When mother in heaven delivers the offspring out of her womb, nothing comes out or is it invisible? INTERESTING, eh Richard?
Again when the issues is Creedal Christianity and the many faces they project with their man made concepts, misunderstanding of the Scriptures, producing a Triune God that no one yet has been able to articulate, you then witlessly, go off and attack me. Game Play, last chapter of the usual anti-books, When faced with a difficult question or accusation, discredit the poster and deflect the best you can so as not to insert foot in mouth.
Mormon Game Book, “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake”. Professor Richard 🙂
Then you drivel out some asinine thing about, Kolob, spirit, no body, mother, and is it invisible or not? What religion are you quoting that from? Lets see, I bet that must be the latest and greatest new Christian Creed, from the ever Changing Church that believes the Scriptures are inerrant, again LOL.
Seriously, when the Church does decide to become hip, and the protest becomes loud, since the membership is failing for lack of credibility, what as a Creedal Christian will you do with the revised doctrine that is bound to happen, like the giving up of infant baptism once a doctrine of past beliefs.
Your turn, The Professor.
I’m Southern Baptist…we don’t have creeds. We don’t have “articles of faith”. Those are in the back of the LDS “scriptures”. We don’t believe in infant baptism either. Learn Christianity from Christians – not from Mormons at the ward who don’t even know Mormonism.
I am fully capable of explaining and showing you the Triune God (the Trinity) from the Bible. You choose to cowardly not want to take me up on any of my three options that I have given you. That’s your problem. People aren’t blind here.
LDS belief of “mother in heaven”? I gave you the quotes over a week ago and you admitted you were in error. Ralph, another Mormon on MC, showed you the same thing. Deal with it.
What religion does Kolob come from? What I am saying is “asinine”? The Mormon Church – read Abraham 3:3,4,9 & 16; Facsimile #2, Figure 1. Please, again, go back to Institute or take remedial Gospel Doctrines class again. These are you’re scriptures. You should know them. I was very specific in my question. What I said about spirit children and your heavenly parents is all well documented in LDS writings. People here aren’t stupid and can see beyond this smokescreen. I guess I’ll have to give some references in my next post. You’re making the LDS Church look bad.
You don’t believe in a heavenly mother? Which “church” do you belong to?
Please keep posting. Your arguments are far more compelling than I could possibly make them.
(…now, where’s Jason Rae when you need him…)
Seriously, you lambast Christians for changing their doctrine, and you lambast them for being “creedal” Christians.
Don’t you know that we see the creeds as a useful basis for Christian doctrine? And they have not changed since the 3rd Century AD. We will also argue that the creeds grew out of the early Christians’ understanding of the Bible, which would put their origins at the time of Christ.
You can’t accuse “creedal” Christians of changing doctrine because the creeds we subscribe to were laid down centuries ago.
Please make up your mind. Either we have changed our doctrines or we haven’t.
Your reasoning is quite interesting.You seem to
have a real problem with how some churches have
changed doctrines, yet your own church has a
track record of this very thing.
I’m thinking right now of one such doctrine/
practice that continued for years under prophet
Brigham Young,namely, sealing men to men.
This was abandoned after his death.This is only
one example of many teachings that were declared
to be truth but later changed.
Also, you seem to be especially troubled by the
fact of how the early christians developed creeds.
As Andy correctly explained, these are not con-
sidered divine scripture.
Lastly, It may be of interest for you to know
that a Mormon Apostle actually drew up a
“Mormon Creed” [Mill.Star vol.28,p.88] that
Brigham Young endorsed in general conference
Yes, it was titled, “Mormon Creed”.
You don’t see it published and referred to today
by this wording, why? Maybe because of change.
LOL, lets see we have Andy a Baptist that does not believe in creeds, Martin who, –” Don’t you know that we see the creeds as a useful basis for Christian doctrine”, and Mike, — early christians developed creeds, As Andy correctly explained, these are not con-
sidered divine scripture.
Wow, Evangelicals please tell me, if I was to join one of the Christian Sects, which one is the most correct? No Creeds, useful creeds based on doctrine, and Creeds not considered divine.
Andy says he can explain the non-Creedal nature of God, or Triune God that is not derived from any Creeds, interesting. Because the URL site below sure seems like a Creed to me. But what the state instead is that they follow the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message which is a change from the 1963 Baptist Faith and Message. Hmmm, change, so much for infallible.
Then we have the following:
When it comes to the Apostles’ or the Nicene or any other creed, we just say No. Baptists base this aversion to creeds on the idea of the priesthood of the believer. We define that as meaning that any individual believer has the right to interpret scripture for him or herself, and to follow the dictates of his or her own Christian conscience.
Then Martin makes a great case, — “You can’t accuse “creedal” Christians of changing doctrine because the creeds we subscribe to were laid down centuries ago”. Interesting remark, changes were made centuries ago, by men who voted on them, Baptist don’t believe them yet have there own, Faith Statements, two changes by the way, and Andy a Baptist claims we don’t believe in infant Baptisms and Mike and Martin have no comment, so I suppose the agree with infant baptism. Either way, I would like to know if small innocent children can go to heaven with out a declaration of faith?
Wow. Men voting on doctrine: “Presiding quorums in the Church are entitled to revelation for the Church on matters of doctrine, policies, programs, callings, and disciplinary actions, as each might be appropriate to a given quorum. Decisions of these quorums are to be made only by the personal, individual revelation of God to each member of that quorum. “And every decision made by either of these quorums must be by the unanimous voice of the same; that is, every member in each quorum must be agreed to its decisions, in order to make their decisions of the same power or validity one with the other” (D&C 107:27).” (from http://eom.byu.edu/index.php/Revelation“) Seems like men decide/vote your doctrine, too.
Care to explain that?
You really like to create these arguments that you think say it all but really are not dispositive. In fact, your arguments are really pretty shallow. Ie, the existence of a creed, a summary of a belief, does not mean the creed is false. You say it is false because it is created by men, but your own faith is led by men.
You say the past belief that the earth was the center of the universe shows a change in doctrine when it does not. At best to you, it shows an instance where some assumptions had to be changed on where God resided, but it does not change his role in our lives or in the world and is not a problem to our faith.
You also state that our trinitarian view has its origin in a creed, but this does not necessitate that the belief orginated in the creed. It is quite possible, is it not, that the creed only formalized a view long held by Christianity.
As to your last question: small children may well get to heaven, and there is room for disagreement on this. Personally, I prefer a view that says that young children will receive the benefit of God’s mercy until they hit an age of accountability, which would vary by child. I do not know if that is true, but will not pretend to say I know better than God.
I notice that no one wanted to comment on which Christian Sect I should join? Isn’t silence golden when confusion sets in.
On children getting to heaven, is you answer backed up by Scripture? Seems to me this has been a nasty, nasty ongoing debate for centuries, with a obvious back and forth tug of war of which side is right, Hmmm, very interesting, but like your Creeds, why don’t you just take a vote and let the majority decide?
On your statement of trinitarian view, is that the same as Triune Trinity, the unexplainable but explained view, which always results in a, “what did he just say”.
Aw, on the past belief of the earth being the center of the earth, it was pretty dangerous than to go against Christian Doctrine, to the point of burning a denier at the stake. Wow, aren’t you glad they did away with that extreme measure to get your vote. I wonder what the view of the nature of God was before all those wonderful counsels decided that the majority view would be upheld. Now we have the Baptist that want nothing to do with Creeds, but have a more Hip way of presenting the, “2000 Baptist Faith and Message”.
Interesting, do other denominations agree with the Baptist, and have a desire to start all over, kick out the Creeds and adopt the “Faith and Message doctrine?
Me thinks that the confusion is just a beginning of what will obviously be a war of words between the different Religious sects, and Mormons will be ignored and left in peace to do our own thing. After all, getting new converts means going after the younger generation with the more Hip Services which include bongo drums, loud guitarist, casual ware with flip flops, videos and amazing lighting systems.
Followed up with Sunday BBQ’s, hot dogs, hamburgers and Softball games.
Your twisting my words to fit your agenda. I said that the Southern Baptists don’t have creeds – not that the Baptists don’t believe what is said in them. We cherish and respect the creeds that have come down through the centuries, but we do not recognize them as authoritative as Scripture for our faith. Our only written authority is the Word of God – the Bible. We believe many things that are written in the creeds. When a church puts out a doctrinal statement it is stating what they believe. Any church that doesn’t have that should be a warning to anyone visiting there. Visitors that know what they are doing will ask for one. The LDS have their 13 Articles of Faith. These are statements of what the LDS believe. You call them articles. It could be said by most that those are creeds.
I could walk into about 90% of most Christian churches and have fellowship with them because we would hold firm on the essentials of the Faith: nature of God, Trinity, beliefs on Jesus Christ, salvation by grace throug faith, etc. I have been in many Christian denominations and none of them differed on the essentials of the faith. If any church waivered on those I would walk out.
Yes, I’ve said this repeatedly, I will be more than happy to discuss the nature of God and the Trinity. I left you a note on the appropriate thread whenever you are ready. I don’t need the creeds to assist me with this in the Bible – God’s word.
Yes, infants and small children go to be with the Lord at death. “Age of accountability” is not a phrase in the Bible. When a youth comes to an understanding of the Gospel varies from person to person. You can’t lump them all into the age of 8 years-old as the LDS Church does. I could give you the biblical position as I see it on my answer, but that is off-topic. I answer your questions. It would be nice if you would return the same courtesy. I’m moving on due to other obligations. Contact: [email protected]
HankSaint wrote “I notice that no one wanted to comment on which Christian Sect I should join”
Ok, I’ll comment, then. I’ll speak as an Ev, and if any other Ev wants to offer a different viewpoint, then let him or her do so.
We’re not interested in you “joining” a Christian sect.
Got it yet?
We don’t preach the church as the means of salvation. You are saved by faith in Christ, not membership of a church or sect.
We’re interested in you coming to faith in Christ.
Hopefully, you’ll find a home amongst the various Churches and Church movements that are scattered around the place. There’s quite a range to choose from, and some are better than others, but one “church” that’s NOT on the list is yours.
Yeah, Hank, I’ll pretty much second what both Andy and Martin have said. You keep coming up with these strawmen arguments that really don’t matter much to our core doctrine.
The Catholic church could be brutal. I know something about history, friend, but that does not address the core doctrine that we all have told you a million times now. Face it: your reliance on this point is a strawman.
Kids, yeah, people have disagreed about it. So what? Is this a core doctrine? Nope.
You then talk about which church you should join. Matin’s answer is pretty good– any Biblical church would be just fine. See, as Andy said, you could walk into virtually any Christian church and find them all pretty close. Our leadership is not in an organization, but is in Christ himself.
I understand why that is so foreign a thought, but a foreign thought need not be untrue.
Oh yeah, what about Mormon leaders voting on doctrine?
Well Andy gave up, Martin hopefully feels that all Denominations are basically the same, since the Church does not save, and Michael feels that a Straw-man argument has occurred.
So here is the supposed Straw-man.
1). Creedal Christians are known to have changed doctrine to fit with current facts and findings.
2). Creeds are just a guideline, have no authority, and all that is found in the Creeds can be proven by Scripture.
3). Infant Baptism, yes or no, but what is more important is accountability and no one seems to know what age that is.
4). Baptist Andy, I’m Southern Baptist…we don’t have creeds. I said that the Southern Baptists don’t have creeds – not that the Baptists don’t believe what is said in them. Hmmm, that sounds like no we don’t, yes we do.
5). Nature of God, unexplainable, but explained. Most Christians have no idea what the Triune Godhead is, or how to explain it.
All straw-man arguments, So you huffed, and you puffed, but guess what, there all still e and one of the many reasons you’re loosing your flock. So we have those who are who don’t question the Dogma, and others who are just part of the herd, interesting.
Excuse my sentence structure, I’m tired and as of yet been very disappointed in any substance to my remarks. Interesting, but very pedestrian remarks.
From what you’ve posted, it seems that you’ve been a Mormon for 50 years, you despise Christians and you think the Bible is just one big mistake. You firmly believe that you have authority because you get it from God’s authorized church. I’m guessing, but I’d venture that you’re several generations in the movement, but not all your immediate family are as committed as you. You have ‘blue blood’, as in ‘the right breeding’.
You remind me of Nicodemus (John 3).
Now, Nicodemus goes to Jesus in the night. Maybe its because he’s embarrassed to be seen with a smelly, ignorant, Galilean peasant, but maybe he thinks he can recruit Jesus to his cause. He expects Jesus to honor his upteenth generation breeding and impeccable religious credentials, but Jesus tells him he must be ‘born again’ (John 3:3, John 3:7).
Nicodemus is taken aback and says something like “Surely you don’t expect me to abandon my inheritance? Its impossible!”, and…well you should know Jesus’ reply (John 3:5-15).
The problem was that Nicodemus was a snob. He dressed it up in religious garb, but he was a snob even so. His snobbery was deeply buried under a well-cultured religiosity, but one minute with Jesus brought it to light. He thought he was better than Jesus and his followers. He thought his association with the Temple gave him status and authority. He thought Jesus would credit him because of his breeding and achievements, but Jesus told him that he hadn’t even been born yet.
It seems Nicodemus learned, maybe in part, maybe the hard way (John 19:39). He found a way to honor the dead Jesus within his own customs, though we never learn how he’d get on with the living Jesus.
You’ve been a Mormon for 50 years. You think you are better than the smelly, ignorant gentiles because you are a Mormon. You think Mormonism is right because its got people like you in it. Your carefully cultivated religiosity has covered your deep sense of self-affirmation and superiority.
You must be born again
I’m tired too…tired of going in circles and getting nowhere with someone who really isn’t serious about having a dialogue on biblical truths. You haven’t taken me up on any of my offers on discussing these matters. If you were serious you would. You don’t “put your money where your mouth is”. You just want to come here and rant. You appear to be angry and just want to settle scores. That’s fine. You have a mouthpiece here on MC. The moderators are patient and have longsuffering. You can blow steam to a point. They’ll let you keep talking and sink further down in your hole. I’ve tried to warn you because of the way that I can see others perceiving you.
You can twist it. You can spin it. If you had anything of substance worth really looking into I’d be happy to go down that road. You claim to be a Mormon for over 50 years, but want to portray to people on here who have done their homework that Mormonism has no “mother in heaven” or Kolob, etc…well, you just make yourself look ridiculous.
The offer still stands on any of the 3 options I gave you anytime in the future. My time is important and quite frankly, I’ve grown bored with the direction this has gone. I hate to say it, but I just can’t take you serious in your claimed desires. Proverbs 12:15; Proverbs 14:16; Proverbs 18:2; Proverbs 23:9
Andy, you seem like a nice person. You most likely attend Church on a regular basis, read the scriptures, and help others. I’m sure we could have a lively debate on the nature of God, also the small aberrations in LDS Doctrine, and whether baptisms of infants should be performed at some stage of accountability. But It won’t change anything, your as much a TBE as I’m a TBM and our paths are set, most likely in cement. I have no desire to belong to some organization or Religious sect that can not claim any Authority, has Pastors and Professors with Degrees in Theology, cannot explain the Triune God, have closed the Heavens to further Scriptures, fault all evidence of Scientist, Geologist and Cosmologist in there stubbornness of believing in Ex Nihilo, and Six Days of Creation.
How could I ever belong and be happy in such a Organization, or belief system that limits man, excludes others, and makes the individual the center because you Claim the elect were chosen by God, and fate cannot be denied. How fortunate for you, and how sad for the rest of the world, that nothing we can do on our own will reward us since we are not the chosen. My personal spiritual experience, my personal testimony that comes from the witness of the Holy Ghost, that Jesus is the Christ, and no man can know this except by revelation, are the keys and building blocks that make me the true believer I am.
You say being serious about a dialogue is impossible, that others have perceived my faults, and yet I come here to defend what has come to my attention as mostly sensationalized borrowed talking points, stating our beliefs when in fact you blunder, twist, and manipulate our doctrine into something that fits the agenda of what you wish others to think we believe. So a Dialogue? Hmmm interesting, how long would I be defending accusations instead of pure doctrine. Example, Joseph Smith committed adultery, and yet I have asked countless time for proof, hard evidence, and witnesses.
It seems this is finally slowing down, but Hank asks “How could I ever belong and be happy in such a Organization, or belief system that limits man, excludes others, and makes the individual the center because you Claim the elect were chosen by God, and fate cannot be denied.”
This is perhaps the most important question one could ask, and the answer will be found that the assumptions are wrong. You would be happy. Man is not limited, but is brought to his fullness. All are indeed welcome. Man is not the center, and you understanding of election is wrong. And finally, no God, as author of our world, cannot be denied. He knows what we will do before we do, and loves us the same, even when we dgo against his desires.
I’d ask you to really consider the above, and whether they are true. You really hate it when others state things about your church that are not true, but seem ready to throw out things about ours that is untrue. Why is this? Why do you do this without hesitation? Do you think you know about our faith, or do you do it out of anger and frustration? Or is it something else?
The final point I’d like to make is that a belief in the Jesus of the Bible rather than of Joseph Smith is that you will experience a freedom greater than you have ever known. You think it is about us here, but its not. Its about Jesus, plain and simple. We are free to worship him and enjoy his fellowship without any sense that we should be doing more. “After all we can do” is not part of our vocabulary (though we know we must work proactively to uphold and spread his word) and thus are free from anything that keeps us from Him. Of course, we all sin because we are sinful beings, but that’s part of the beauty of Jesus, because he loves us the same.
You have been Mormon for you rentire life, I am assuming, if not, then most of it. These thoughts I am sure seem foreign to you. That is fine, but I ask that you think about learning our faith.
I once belonged to the Community Church and was attending the Baptist Church in my early twenties. My history of religion goes back to when I was a child, and has not ceased even into my sunset years. I feel comfortable that I have a profound testimony that Jesus is the Christ, and my Saviour as well as yours. I believe in Repentance, and feel it is something we must constantly be aware of since we sin daily.
With out any doubt I believe you belong to an apostate group, have limited yourself to what is Biblical Scripture and denied the power and authority of God. Revelation is not part of your daily life, and when asked how you know that Jesus is the Christ, you only state that you were led to the Word of God where it is revealed in the scriptures, that is the limit of your subjective and spiritual testimonies.
I don’t hate anything, but find that false accusations, misquotes, out of context snippets, lack of knowledge of our Doctrine, and plain out sensationalized accusations seem quiet interesting, even your own two scholars Mossier and Owens have tried to calm the Evangelicals into engaging in more civil and better researched talking points.
Mossier and Owens:
“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”.
I am glad you found something you found peaceful, Hank, but I know you will find something more powerful in Christ alone.
Here again, though, we see you saying that we do not believe in daily revelation. I called this to your attention earlier, and you said it was in regards to the canon. Now, you seem to be saying it is indeed daily revelation, ergo that God does not speak to us on a daily basis. You should know better by now.
You also say that we misrepresent your faith and use Mosser and Owens as proof. This is in the same breath that you disregard something you have been told over and over again.
Mosser’s and Owens’ article has been discussed at length in another thread, but suffice to say it is not the document you think it is. All it does is state that Mormons have gotten more sophisticated in their apologetic and Christians need to be aware. It does not say Mormonism is right, or that the apologetic offered by Mormonism is accurate, only that it is getting more sophisticated. The article is also their opinion, and since Christians believe only in the authority of God, not of man, the rest of us cannot be bound by it.
You claim we are an apostate church, but apostate from what? From the first Christians? Prove it. From the Jews (ie, a singular God vs. many)?
You claim our creeds our voted on by men, but your doctrine is determined by a group of men in complete agreement on an issue. No difference. You believe the Bible has been corrupted, but disregard the myriad of changes (or outright teaching ignored) in the BoM. I could go on, but I hope you get the point: your faith is not on solid ground in comparison with Christianity.
You will disagree, but in the same spirit you ask us to consider your faith, I ask you consider ours.
Hmmm, the nature of God, voted on by a majority, Nicene being the beginning of several Councils or gatherings to discuss, debate and come up with what, how and why of certain misunderstood Scriptures and meanings. No Apostles, no prophets and no one to claim authority to speak for God. Interesting, and here is what what discussed and voted on at the first Council.
Main articles: Arianism and Arian controversy
The Arian controversy was a Christological dispute that began in Alexandria between the followers of Arius (the Arians) and the followers of St. Alexander of Alexandria (now known as Homoousians). Alexander and his followers believed that the Son was of the same substance as the Father, co-eternal with him. The Arians believed that they were different and that the Son, though he may be the most perfect of creations, was only a creation of God the Father. A third group (now known as Homoiousians) later tried to make a compromise position, saying that the Father and the Son were of similar substance. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Council_of_Nicaea
What is interesting is those who gathered where not yet of one mind, and each had there own followers much like we see with the different religious sects today. Now if they were confused then, what makes you so sure that, that confusion has been clarified, verified, and most importantly approved by God. This most obviously proves my point, what once was a pure and undefiled Church, set in place by Christ, appointing the General Authorities and First Presidency, Peter, James and John, and twelve apostles. So important that when one died they felt to cast lots to replace and fill the vacancy to complete the twelve as Christ put in place. My point being, you belong to a n apostate Church with out any approved or chosen leaders.
Regards, Richard. 🙂
I think we could debate the history of this quite extensively. But it comes down to this, and it is something I have offered many times and recieved no response: the existence of a split does not necessitate that the whole thing blows up. One side could be right, am I correct? And I expect an answer on that.
See, Mormons use that of proof of an apostasy, as if there is no other option. But there is another option, right? And I expect an answer on that.
You also do not address the fact that it is men who decide your doctrine. That they all have to agree is kind of meaningless, because all that means is they have to convince everyone about it. If you say that they are united so that differentiates it, you still are mistaken. Men are in charge, and men can be united for wrong reasons and therefore still wrong no matter what. Is this a possibility? I expect an answer.
Then you might say they are united because the spirit tells you so. But what are we to do with spirits? You know the Biblical answer, I hope. No matter how good or right it might feel, we are to do what? I expect an answer.
I’ll end with a summary of a comment from Shematwater, who told me not to pay attention to words but look at meaning. I cannot do that. Words have meaning, and the words found in the Bible matter. The words of your past leaders matter, and they are your authority, and speak with authority. The Bible is very clear, as are your leaders past statements. You think there was an apostasy in our church, but ignore the splits in your own. Why do I say that now? Because it is arguable that some of those who have split take more seriously the words of your church’s founders than you do.
You will disagree, but I expect an answer to the logical questions I offer above. I will keep pounding until you answer.
Sorry, but another point I meant to hit on is the logical fallacy that you need a human representative to act as an approved or chosen leader. It is possible that Christ can be our head, without a representative on earth, right? Just like above, I expect an answer.
Good points all of them, but all based on logic, known statements, events, or conditions. I never see in your posts that you have a conviction or testimony that these problematic issues are true, you go on stating that they are reasonable.
1). “the existence of a split does not necessitate that the whole thing blows up. One side could be right, am I correct? And I expect an answer on that.
Wow, I “GUESS” you could be correct. This is how you asked, and to me it sounds more like hope then surety.
2). Mormons use that of proof of an apostasy, as if there is no other option. But there is another option, right? And I expect an answer on that.
Words have meaning, and the Scriptures more then hint at a apostasy will happen, and a restoration also will happen in the last days. So we see that both 1-2 are Biblical.
3). “Men are in charge, and men can be united for wrong reasons and therefore still wrong no matter what. Is this a possibility? I expect an answer”.
Yes, and since both Evangelicals and Mormons base there reasoning and doctrine on men, I myself would use James 1:5 as my guide when seeking confirmation of any truth. Ask God, who is willing and read to answer all questions when asked with sincerity. Words have meaning, and the scriptures show a way.
4). You know the Biblical answer, I hope. No matter how good or right it might feel, we are to do what? I expect an answer.
5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
“And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth unto you by the power of the Holy Ghost.” Moroni 9:4
5). You will disagree, but I expect an answer to the logical questions I offer above. I will keep pounding until you answer.
Michael, I don’t desire to be logical, I want to know. So if your testimony is based on logic, and words that have meaning, and can happily state that the Spirit led you to the Bible where in you find the logic of Gods Words, then we will part ways on testimony base only on logic.
My testimony is based on Revelation, the same revelation that Peter received when he told Jesus, you are the Christ the Son of the Living God.
13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
6). Another point I meant to hit on is the logical fallacy that you need a human representative to act as an approved or chosen leader. It is possible that Christ can be our head, without a representative on earth, right? Just like above, I expect an answer.
AMOS CHAPTER 3
7 Surely the Lord God will do nothing, abut he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.
Hank, here’s the deal: if you acknowledge that these things are possible, and that there is an alternative, you cannot say you know for sure you are right given your testimony alone. In other words, we have to look at it all to come to a conclusion.
And yes, I use logic here because it shows a fundamental fault in your defenses. You say you don’t want to use logic but revelation, and you use a quote from James stating how God gives information freely, and he does. But you ignore several warnings that we are to be aware of spirits that talk to us, and that we are to check everything we are told against the Bible.
If words have meaning, then these warnings must be taken into consideration as you consider James 1:5 and the story of Peter you recount. Am I right on that? I expect an answer.
If words have meaning, then we must consider that God means what he says when he says that he knows of no other Gods. Am I right? I expect an answer.
If words have meaning, we must consider the whole of the Bible whenever making a conclusion in doctrine, for it is all God’s word. Am I right? I expect an answer.
If you then say that the Bible is God’s word, but that it has been corrupt through time, you must be prepared to give solid evidence that the message given now is not the same as it was in Christ’s time. You must also show the BoM’s changes are insignificant.
Further, you must explain Adam/God, Smith’s declaration that if he didn’t take a wife would risk their salvation, Smith’s changing story of the 1st vision, first hand accounts of his head in a bag when translating, D&C 132 as dependant on salvation, WoW as necessary for salvation, and a myriad of other comments and doctrines by LDS.
Hank, you say you want to know, and not by logical means, but by revelation. I assume then that you could care less about these arguments because you have your testimony. But do you apply this method to any other area of your life? Probably.
But if you do use this method in other areas of your life, do you see how subject to manipulation you are? Sorry, but if words don’t matter, which is what you essentially state, then you can use them however you wish, and so can your leadership. And then they can manipulate them to sound good and make you feel good, and keep you following without question.
In the end, your passion and your feelings for your faith does not make it correct. Far from true, because if you study the Bible in its entirety and consider every thing in it, you cannot conclude, for instance, that there is an endless progression of gods. You also cannot conclude that Smith was a prophet, nor can you conclude that there is an absolute need for an authority figure in a church.
Finally, your first point of reply was that you see no conviction in my posts. What would you like to see to know that I have conviction about my faith?
Michael, lets start with your last statement,
“Finally, your first point of reply was that you see no conviction in my posts. What would you like to see to know that I have conviction about my faith?”
Are you sure I said I did not see any conviction, even though you stated that logically the Scriptures have meaning. Please tell me how you know that “Jesus is the Christ”. I believe you stated that the Sprit led you to the Word of God, and His Words revealed he was Christ.
The prophet’s purpose is not to be an intermediary between God and others, though a prophet must often do so. His purpose is, rather, to assist others to receive from God the personal revelation that he, the prophet, has taught God’s truth, which will show the way to Christ.
I take no man at his word, I expect personal revelation as found in James 1:5 that both Jesus is the Christ and that if a Prophet speaks for Christ, I can go in prayer and have that validated to me personally.
“Let every man and woman know, by the whispering of the Spirit of God to themselves, whether their leaders are walking in the path the Lord dictates, or not” (JD 9:150).
Michael states, “If words have meaning, then these warnings must be taken into consideration as you consider James 1:5 and the story of Peter you recount. Am I right on that? I expect an answer.
Yes you are right, warnings are stated and also a way to seek and find.
7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: 8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
Michael, the truth, have you ever kelt in humble prayer to ask if Jesus is the Christ? I expect an answer. 🙂
Hank, I am sure you said you did not see any conviction: “I never see in your posts that you have a conviction or testimony that these problematic issues are true, you go on stating that they are reasonable.”
I have indeed prayed if Jesus is the Christ, and he is.
Despite that I do like logic, I know indeed there is a spiritual element here. There are things that we cannot explain. But that is true in your faith, just as it is true in mine. And because of that, we could argue back and forth till we are blue in the face. Neither can prove anything based on a faith discussion alone because there is nothing to base the discussion on. There is no common standard. You feel this, and I feel that, so we would be stuck in the discussion.
However, using logic and the Bible, we can use a comparison and something solid in the discussion.
So, on to the next point you miss: read Acts 17:11, 1 John 4:1, and Rev. 2:1-3. There is more, but this is a good start. So, if words mean something, ought we to look at scripture to confirm the spirits?
I know you’ll say you did, but your scripture is a creation of man, not of God. Hence the inclusion of the Rev. verse. And hence the need to come back to a common standard, since I don’t accept the BoM or any other LDS book as truth.
Starting to see where I come from?
Finally, I am not sure what you mean about Smith, because that has nothing to do with our conversation.
So, do I have a spiritual conviction? Yes! But I can back that up by using something I can show you and walk you through, if you are willing to listen. While powerful, it is not based on a spirit that has been untested. Rather, it has been tested through and through. Suffice to say, I am more than convicted. I can even discuss any issue given with full confidence. Doesn’t mean I’ll have the answers, but I can discuss with full confidence.
Are you? Are you confident in even the small stuff that you earlier said you weren’t?
First and foremost is our testimony that Jesus is the Christ, all else is topping on the pie. Since it seems we both have that testimony, other problematic issues are just that, nothing can be proved. What it boils down too, is the testimonies, and who is Christ?
So getting back to the Creeds, and you have to agree it concerned the nature of God, a very important article of Faith. There was debate as I showed and pointed out, the Scriptures were not clear and obviously that is true or there never would have been issues to discuss. So we have all these Bishops from most of the Biblical world gathering together and finally VOTING of the what, how and why. Now, I’m not telling you what you believe that is your concern, but if you claim like the Baptist, you don’t use the Creeds as Scripture, then how do you determine the nature of God.
Now the second point, is since you or most Evangelicals claim Mormons worship a different Christ, then you have to prove that by going to the scriptures and show me were we are wrong. I stated that I have a testimony that Jesus is the Christ, and I received it the same way Peter did. I take that revelation as being most important, more then the logic you state you receive from the Bible.
Faith, Repentance, Baptism and Gift of the Holy Ghost, all essential NT ordinances. You point to logic that states these are not, I read the scriptures in the Bible and find they are.
Logger Head, you go your way, and I shall continue to go my way. Coming here to disprove Mormonism, is just going to frustrate you.
Going out and preaching the Bible to others will be rewarding.
Peace, Richard. 🙂
Coming here and preaching the Gospel to those who don’t understand it is rewarding, and is teaching the Bible to others.
Disproving Mormonism is frustrating, because you do not think words are important and rely on your testimony over any amount of evidence to the contrary.
You say we have not shown you Biblically how your faith is incorrect, but that is not true, as there is more than enough Biblical evidence on this site to convince anyone with an open mind.
But your testimony keeps you from an open mind, and you will continue to not see the words for what they are.
As an example, you continue to rely on the debate on and voting of the creeds as proof of an apostasy. But that is a very fauly argument because it is more than possible that the result was a codification of things alreay widely held, and the other groups were indeed wrong. Kind of like if the LDS church were to get together and say why all the offshoots are wrong and write a code so there was no confusion on the matter into the future. That would not invalidate what you see as truth, would it?
You still misunderstand the purpose of the creeds, and why the Baptists evidently don’t expressly claim them as their own.
Faith, Repentance, Baptism, and the Gift of the Holy Ghost are not problematic in and of themselves. It is when you get to those details that you don’t like to talk about, like the nature of God and that Jesus is the brother of Satan that Mormonism falls apart. It is the changing doctrine and ideas in just the 170 years since its existence that it falls apart. Logic suggests that an unchanging God cannot be the God you worship. And logic suggests that you don’t put much stock in the Bible, or for that matter, any of the LDS scripture.
However, the logic I suggest you cannot accept because of your testimony. But that testimony must be tested against the scriptures, which you refuse to do, I think, because a look at the entire message would destroy your testimony
I know you will disagree with my summary, and that is fine. And because you refuse to look outside of your testimony we are at a logger head.
But as the Bible says, there is complete freedom in Christ, not to do whatever you want (though Paul says you can), but to live a life in full confidence and contentment in your situation. You are not worrying about your place in the afterlife, you know where you will be, and you know what will happen. There is freedom apart from the bondage of sin and the focus on anything but our God.
It is wonderful, but your testimony keeps you from this joy. I know you say you have joy, but the joy we have is greater. Yes, I said that, something that cannot truly be compared, but I know it is true. And how do I know it is true? My testimony of Christ and his role in my life. The difference? I can discuss it and show you in the Bible, without hesitation, why it is true. I do not need another gospel, and I do not need an authority figure to show me. I am led by the spirit to the answers as laid out in the Bible, and only the Bible. I am not afraid to discuss any portion and consider it all to come to the answers I need.
You cannot say that. You cannot rely solely on the Bible, and have to ignore scripture to reach your conclusion. You must discredit it as someone’s opinion, as translated wrongly, or point to additional instruction. But that additional scripture has a million problems on its own, as do the people in your faith who are supposed to speak for God.
So, in the end, I am very comfortable in my faith and in my logic because I trust it all. I trust God to lead me to the truth and give me words when I have none. Ask and you shall recieve, indeed.
Very good, lots of good points, and as we can see you have the logic of the Bible to support your testimony, and why not, the Scriptures point to Christ, speak of Christ, and witness of Christ. The problem as I see it is that you have closed your mind to any more Words From God, it is settles and nothing can be added to the Cannon of Scripture, for it is closed, and the amount of Light and knowledge you are willing to accept is also closed since your Doctrine states that the Heavens are closed to revelation for the Church or his doctrine. I did not claim that God does not speak to you personally, since I’m sure that you offer up prayers and hopefully expect them to be answered.
You claim the Bible show that Mormonism is wrong, that we preach a different God and a different Christ. I agree we do not agree on the Father, Son relationship, but I still believe He lived, died for us, and was resurrected. I cannot agree that the Triune Trinity is anything other then the confusion of Nicea and other Councils held by men. You state we put our trust in a Prophet, and then you go ahead and put you faith in mans interpretation of the who, what and why of God the Father and His literal Son.
I’m also very, very comfortable with my testimony, the Book of Mormon, and other Standard works we have, I tested them and found them all to be true and valuable to ones Salvation and progression. I have as yet found anyone to prove the Book of Mormon to be anything other then what Joseph Smith Claimed it to be, and the witness of 11 other men who all died without retracting one word of their testimonies.
Richard, I think this has come to its course end. So be it. But I have to say your last response tells me you just don’t get what I say. Eventually, I have to say, so be it. It is not likely you will get it if you don’t look. And you are ignoring some key points repeatedly. For example: the issue of revelation. Do you or don’t you think God continues to reveal his word to us? I know you don’t think we’re open to new works to be added to the canon, but I, and others here, have stated that this is not necessarilly the case. You blow it off.
You also ignore the point regarding checking any new prophecy or book against the Bible. You check to see if it the new revelation is consistent with the Bible and supported by it. You even state that you have to go to other sources to confirm your belief.
So, what is the BoM in terms of the Bible? I say that against the Bible it fails. You will say it doesn’t, but use vague and isolated evidence to support it. What about your doctrine? Same thing, but you even have to go further because you must say the Bible is either opinion, it is translated incorrectly, or a reliance on the argument that because the creeds were voted on it is false. In other words, you discount that which does not support your faith.
But, since you accept the testimony at the expense of these truths you will not see these arguments. You may say “good points” again, but you will not see them.
This, though, is fine. I cannot force a thought onto you. Rather, all I can do is present the truth. Maybe I’ll plant a seed that hadn’t ben there before. I pray I have.