The Day of Forgiveness

A sermon on forgiveness by our very own Martin_from_Brisbane.

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162 Responses to The Day of Forgiveness

  1. rvales says:

    If Jesus asked me to jump over a gorge promising that he would bridge the entire gap to the otherside, I would demonstrate my faith in his promise by jumping. Does that mean I am saved because I took initiative and jumped or because I trusted Jesus’ word?
    I could say that I trust him and still keep both feet planted firmly but then no one on the outside would know that I have faith that my Lord and Saviour is protecting me. Jumping is not what saves me…knowing that Jesus speaks truth is what saves me.
    It seems the Mormon equivalent of this would be Jesus telling me to run as fast as I can and try my best to jump a gorge and if I tried as best as I could he’d ‘float’ me the few feet that I couldn’t reach. That puts an awful lot of weight on me realizing my maxium running speed.
    The truth is that I know no matter how hard I train, and how much ‘long distance’ jumping practice I get in the gaping hole of sin seperating me from God is still miles beyond my feeble attempts. Jesus asks me to trust him when he tells me that *I can’t do it but that He already has*. How untrusting for me to push myself to train just in case he doesn’t come thru completely.

  2. Ralph says:


    You are wrong in what you say the LDS believe. If Jesus were to tell us to jump most would jump without a run up or hesitation. And this too is because of our faith in Him. But we know we have free agency and we know we can also stand our ground. But if following Jesus in full (ie part of faith) is necessary for salvation then those who stand their ground are not following Jesus in full are they? That is also a part of faith and works, not just the works only for showing the rest of the world you believe in Jesus. If someone stood their ground, it is up to Jesus to decide if they followed Him properly or not, which would be the ultimate decider of that person going into heaven or not. That is the day of Judgement – Jesus looking at our lives and how we followed Him in faith (ie our works that come from our faith) and judging us based on that. if one gained salvation right after a confession of faith despite works, then why have judgement day? Those people would die and go right to heaven skipping judgement – or is that what you believe?

  3. subgenius says:

    if Jesus did ask you to jump…how hard would you jump? would you just barely jump or jump with zest and zeal….i believe JC would actually just ask one to step off the edge, but that’s another topic altogether.

    re-read my posts, i never claim Paul to be a liar or apostate, simply bringing up a point, a valid point. To deny any of the history of discussions about Paul is irresponsible to the scholarly notion of this board. Self-criticism/inspection should not be so difficult for the Ev but it always seems to be. i am not talking about obscure notions by the way.

  4. sub said

    i never claim Paul to be a liar or apostate

    OK, lets give you the benefit of the doubt.

    However, the question still remains; do you trust Paul to explain to you the Christian Gospel?

    From what I’ve seen of your posts;

    * You trust him when he’s foreseeing a ‘great apostasy” (2 Thess 2:1-5, though the application is contested)
    * You trust him when he mentions baptism for the dead (1 Cor 15:29, though the context is contested)
    * You don’t trust him when he fills entire pages of his letters explaining the Gospel of Grace (this is where you first threw doubt on his legitimacy as a Christian leader)

    It appears that you trust him when he affirms your convictions, but you don’t trust him when he doesn’t.

    Isn’t this effectively saying that you trust your convictions more than you trust Paul, and the rest of the Bible by extension?

    Your 8AOF is misleading. Wouldn’t it be better to modify it? Here are some suggestions;

    * We believe the Bible to be the Word of God as long as it agrees with what we teach.

    * We believe the Bible is the Word of God as long as we can ignore the bits we don’t like

    or, more honestly…

    * We believe in ourselves, and we use some Bible verses selectively and in isolation to back us up when we need to.

    PS You can tack the BoM onto your statement for all I care, but your attitude to that book is just as selective as your attitude to the Bible (again, how many Gods are there?)

  5. Ralph,

    Referring to your last two posts, I don’t object to the general direction of your argument.

    I’d say that; yes, we choose to follow Christ (every new day, actually) and yes, God elects those who enter His Kingdom. In my reading of the Bible, I see both our free will and God’s election acknowledged as being true, so I’ll accept the dilemma, even if I struggle to come up with some definitive theory to reconcile them.

    What alarms me about the LDS perspective, which seems to be wholly occupied with human free agency, is that it gives God no room to operate with His free will. And there’s that problem of who gets the credit for my salvation/exaltation or whatever you’d like to call it.

    However, before we all kiss and make up, I also have a nagging doubt that your perception of obediance to Christ is massively oriented to obediance to the LDS Church. In other words, I can’t truly follow Christ unless I follow the LDS Church.

    The problem here is that I would have to accept and follow Joseph Smith, the creator of the LDS Church. The trouble is, I know too much about him (I mean the real Joseph Smith, not the fairy story version put about by teenage LDS missionaries).

    You probably know this; I want nothing to do with Joseph Smith or his bastard creations, and I advise you to jettison him just as soon as you can.

  6. rvales says:

    Do I still sin? Yes! Everyday I’m more and more aware of God’s holiness and my inability and the need for the cross. I am saved by faith before I do anything! And thank God because when I do works I see once again how fallible humans are. My husband likes to use the analogy that Jesus didn’t just pay off his debt but that when a ‘credit check’ is done on him they now use Jesus’ social security number! Last spring my church held a free clinic for the neighborhood (a low income high crime neighborhood) and my husband and I signed up to work. We didn’t sign up because we thought it would score us points, or make us more like Jesus so we would be worthy of grace. We signed up because we were moved to do so (the Holy Spirit in us) and by the end of the day we didn’t feel more saved we felt blessed to have had the opportunity to be God’s tangible love to another human. Faith is not a propensity for following the rules it’s a knowledge that Jesus is telling you the truth.
    Sub-I don’t think it matters how hard I would jump you can’t have more than 100% trust in something. Do you have 100% trust that you will be with Jesus in Heaven when you die?

  7. subgenius says:

    Paul is not an “all or nothing” topic. To not recognize the inherent imperfection of men is naive on this subject. Paul is not the fountainhead of the Gospel. So to answer your question ‘yes’, i trust Paul to explain the Gospel, BUT do i trust him to explain the whole of the Gospel?….no, …that would render the rest of the NT (and even the OT) useless, right?
    The Ev seems to have a blind allegiance to only Paul, yet the “controversy” i touched on in earlier posts is a subject i have never discussed or heard about in the LDS church. Paul is openly discussed and published amongst biblical scholars outside of Utah, my friend.

    The Pauline cuts/paste more scripture for its own purpose than any Mormon, sometimes whole chapters are disregarded.

    As far as our 8AOF is concerned…do you subscribe to and believe in every translation of the Bible, regardless? (this would also include any Mormon translations, right?)

    Faith is not measured by men, once again the Ev brings up the “100%”…as if to “boast”, as if being Mormon means that one is only 67% sure…geez. I think we all no better than that.
    You say you did not “volunteer” to earn points….Mormons don’t either, Ev typically misunderstand that point too.
    I would contend with the typical assumption that Faith is knowledge…it is not…Faith is hope. Faith is the defiance of what you “know” or rather the defiance of the “flesh” because hope is greater than knowledge….but that is just me and my semantics.

  8. setfree says:

    Ok, Martin, I just want to call attention to your posts above. They are so to-the-point, well-written and spot-on as to deserve some applause, an a hearty AMEN. I encourage Ralph and sub to read and reread, and listen? please?

  9. rvales says:

    So then why do you ‘volunteer’? Why do you go thru the temple and keep the WoW and do work for the dead? LDS state over and over that we qualify for exaltation thru our works I am saying the my works count for nothing! Jesus’ blood is the payment for salvation (I am saved from eternal separation from God, I will be with Him in paradise) any works that come as a result of faith in Him (trusting that He is everything he said he was) is to glorify God so that other’s may come to know Him.

  10. liv4jc says:

    Sub, again you characterize Martin (and me by proxy) as trusting solely in Paul, although I have stated in every response that Paul was moved by the Holy Spirit to write the content of his letters, therefore Paul simply echoes and clarifies the entirety of the teachings of the Bible. Did you ever notice how Paul reaches back to the beginning of God’s revelation to man in Genesis and, quoting Moses, declares that “Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness”? Was Moses a Pauline Christian? I’d say that’s the same salvation (justification/declaration of righteousness) that Paul teaches. So I lay your charge back at your feet: Read for comprehension.
    Enough said. It’s obvious that you are going to straw man this thing to death by mischaracterizing Martin’s beliefs.

    Also, all followers of JS, please read the OT carefully. YHWY Elohim is used hundreds of times as God’s name. There is One God, not three, and Jehovah is not only Jesus in the OT. Elohim is not the big bad guy law enforcer, while Jehovah is the gentle, merciful God, who we owe our debt to at a lower interest rate. God’s standards are the same. Again, carefully read the purpose of following the Old Covenant, which is a covenant of works. It was never for salvation, it was to inherit the land and become a nation that glorified God because of their success through following Him, the One True God. Start at Exodus 19:5,6 and read from there with that principle in mind. This covenant with the nation of Israel is forever (Jeremiah 33). Move on to Hebrews where the Old Covenant is compared to the new, which is a covenant of grace, not of works. Romans 7 tells us that we are dead to the Law

    Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe. Sin had left crimson stain He washed me white as snow. And when before the throne I stand in Him complete, Jesus died my soul to save, my lips shall still repeat, “Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe. Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed me white as snow!

  11. subgenius says:

    nursery rhymes aside, when you come before Him on the throne, you will first be determined if you may even be judged, that is to say He will either “know” you or He will not (you know the scripture). So, then will you be judged by the deeds of good and evil….how?, who knows, not my place…Book of Life will be opened will it not?
    Revelation 13:8
    The best part of this passage is not just the reference to the Book of Life, but also this notion of “from the begining” as in the plan of Christ being planned from God all along.

    Nevertheless, one’s name in the book can not be assumed to be written in permanent ink. All of Revelation 3 is a good read on this topic, especially early verses.
    Now how about 100%? Revelation 22:19 shows that God adds and subtracts from the book, which shows that the eternal destiny of any person is not “fixed” in the mind of God.
    …and yes, there is only One God, every Mormon knows this, we also know that we may be like Him (not as Him but like Him) as He has provided. Adam and Eve were cast out before they could eat of the fruit of the tree of life, having already eaten from the tree of knowledge….and why were they not allowed to eat of tree of life?…lest they become like one of US….so being made not-so-eternal we die…except we are given a chance to partake of this fruit of the tree of life and actually receive “eternal life” and therefore become “like one of US”….but perhaps God meant US in a different way, as if He belongs to a different group of beings, that is what you believe, right?

  12. All,

    It looks like this particular exchange has run its course. I’m sure the various unfinished conversations here will carry on elsewhere.

    Thank you all for your contributions, and thanks to Aaron and MC for hosting it all.

    I’d just like to sign off where I started;

    The Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins, whether we think we’ve qualified for that forgiveness or not. When He says we are forgiven, we are forgiven, and nothing in earth, or heaven, or the heavens above the heavens can change that. (See Mark 2:1-11, Romans 8:38-39).

    There’s a warning in this, though, on the other side of the coin, which we didn’t touch upon. When the Son of Man says we are not forgiven, then we are not forgiven. No amount of the religious capital that we might have accumulated through our Church allegiances or Temple works, will move Him on this.

    Its time to put your faith in Christ, and in Christ alone.

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