It’s Throwback Thursday!
The following blog article originally posted at Mormon Coffee on January 30, 2006.
Today’s Journal and Courier [January 30, 2006] from Lafayette, Indiana reports on that city’s Music of the Faiths hymn sing which took place Sunday afternoon. “The [participating] churches ran the gamut of Christian traditions,” the article states, “including some Catholic, Protestant and Mormon groups.”
Maybe I’m being too picky here, but this statement bothers me. If there’s one thing Mormonism is not, it’s a “Christian tradition.” The basic message of Mormonism is that the tradition of Christianity—which has been in place for nearly 2000 years—is wrong/abominable/corrupt. I object to calling Mormonism a Christian tradition. I imagine the journalist intended only to convey that the choirs participating in the hymn sing did not include Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, etc., yet I am nevertheless unhappy over the validating label she gave to Mormonism, which is wholly undeserving of it.
The LDS choir sang I Need Thee Every Hour which, of course, is a Christian hymn, not a Mormon hymn. It was written in 1872 by Annie Sherwood Hawks. Annie was a Baptist, a member of one of those “wrong, abominable and corrupt” churches that, according to Mormonism, was the reason for the Restoration. Robert Lowry set Annie’s words to music and added the beautiful refrain “I need Thee, O I need Thee; Ev’ry hour I need Thee! O bless me now, my Savior, I come to Thee.” Dr. Lowry was Annie’s pastor.
Two years before this Christian hymn was written, John Taylor, later to become the third Prophet of the LDS Church, said this:
“What does the Christian world know about God? Nothing …Why so far as the things of God are concerned, they are the veriest of fools; they know neither God nor the things of God” (Journal of Discourses 13:225, May 6, 1870).
I’m puzzled by the LDS Church choosing to sing (and include in its hymnal) spiritual songs written by those they believe knew absolutely nothing about God and who they believe belonged to the church of the devil (see the Book of Mormon, 1 Nephi 14:10).
Peggy Bryan, the Indiana state music chairman for the LDS Church, may have shed some light on this question. Remarking on the Music of the Faiths hymn sing she said, “They’re all singing together and it doesn’t matter what we believe because we’re all singing to God.”
I guess Peggy never read what the late LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie wrote:
“The gods of Christendom…are gods who were created by men in the creeds of an apostate people. There is little profit or peace in serving them, and certainly there is no salvation available through them” (A New Witness for the Articles of Faith, page 545).”And virtually all the millions of apostate Christendom have abased themselves before the mythical throne of a mythical Christ…” (Mormon Doctrine, page 269).
My question for Peggy: To which God were you all singing?
I think it is a nice hymn. I think the thirteenth article of faith expresses why it can be used.
I can never quite figure out why Mormons want to be called Christians when they have zero agreement with basic Christian doctrine. The Mormon god isn’t the Christian God nor is their Jesus the Biblical Jesus. The old time Mormons made this very clear. They weren’t looking to join the party. The considered themselves to be the party; the one true church. Gordon B. Hinckley said,
“In bearing testimony of Jesus Christ, President Hinckley spoke of those outside the Church who say Latter-day Saints ‘do not believe in the traditional Christ.’ ‘No, I don’t. The traditional Christ of whom they speak is not the Christ of whom I speak. For the Christ of whom I speak has been revealed in this the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times. He together with His Father, appeared to the boy Joseph Smith in the year 1820, and when Joseph left the grove that day, he knew more of the nature of God than all the learned ministers of the gospel of the ages.'” (LDS Church News Week ending June 20, 1998, p. 7).
What’s going on with this concert is just an opportunity for Mormons to blow some blue smoke around and try to convince folks that they are really just main stream Christians.
Who is the Savior that is in the hymn cited above? Is He the spirit offspring of one of the Mormon gods and one of his plural wives that live on or near the planet Kolob and who was conceived by the Mormon god having actual physical sex with the Virgin Mary?
Here’s a little more help for you regarding the “Jesus” your religion teaches about and believes in.
“In Mormonism, Jesus is a creation, the product of relations between god and his goddess wife who used to be people from another world (McConkie, Bruce, Mormon Doctrine, p. 192, 321, 516, 589). Jesus is the literal spirit brother of the devil and of you and me (McConkie, p. 192, 589). Also, in Mormon theology, God has a body of flesh and bones (Doctrine & Covenants 130:22) as does his wife, and together they produce spirit offspring in heaven who inhabit human bodies on earth.”
“Very few, if any, of the ‘different’ Mormon doctrines are found in their Standard Works: the Bible, The Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, and The Pearl of Great Price. Rather, they are taught by Mormons of high standing: prophets, apostles, members of the 70 Quorum. McConkie, for example, was a member of the 70’s Quorum, a very high ranking Mormon, and wrote the book, Mormon Doctrine, from which much of the documentation for this is taken.”
Mormons really don’t like this publicized. They’d just like to float along like there’s nothing to see here folks. We’ve had Mormons show-up here telling us we don’t know what we’re talking about. When we give them the references they go strangely silent. It’s nutty stuff and while they’ll claim higher spiritual insight and understanding is needed to grasp these “truths” the fact of the matter is it’s all just a bunch of old cult thinking.
The devil loves Mormonism. Degrade God’s Word and His Son is something the evil one loves to see these false religious cults do……..and then claim it’s enlightenment.
Whats funny is the Sufi “Al-ahad”and the Hindu “Brahman” have more in common metaphysically with the infinite being of the Christian God than does the Mormon God.
The original Mormon leaders had no understanding of what sacred tradition is or how scripture comes about in the first place.
Please be honest and go to the sources of your 13th Article of Faith-
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
1 Corinthians 13:7
Love beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Honestly, I’m tired of Mormonism exploiting the gospel to validate its claims. On one hand, “apostate Christendom [have] abased themselves before the mythical throne of a mythical Christ…” and on the other, “we follow the admonition of Paul”, while plagiarizing the Bible to assert its authority. I pray that God’s spirit will lead you out of Mormonism and into the life he has designed for you.
@ falcon – Mormons are now beginning to see their error in placing a “prophet” above the apostolic model of counsels and coming to a common mind led by the Holy Spirit. For Christians the final Prophet is Jesus, he is the One all of the OT prophets were pointing to and prefigure. The old model was a shadow of what was coming and has been fulfilled in the person of Jesus who himself is the real fullness of the gospel.
Luke 16:16 – The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it.
You said, “I think it is a nice hymn.”
I agree, it is a very nice modern hymn. And the 1800’s are modern in the sense that my church sings some hymns that are nearly 2000 years old. I particularly like this stanza,
“Oh, bless me now, my Savior, I come to Thee
I need Thee every hour, teach me Thy will
And Thy rich promises in me fulfill”
The problem is that you and I are singing this to two different Lords, and yours doesn’t even exist. Your Lord is built over the keystone of the Book of Mormon, and since your keystone is false so is everything that is built on top of it, including your Lord.
Your Jesus is not our Jesus, and your hope and faith is in futile and vain things. Come to the foundation of the Apostles with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone and stop placing your faith in the works of a condemned false prophet. Joseph Smith did not build on the foundation that Jesus laid for if he had he would not have taught a false Jesus who is really no Jesus at all.
the Mormon church takes every opportunity to present itself as just another Christian church to the public . It’s a tactic that has been successful enough to fool people thus aiding it’s proselytizing
efforts. Not much can be done about this nowadays except to find ways to direct people to sites like MRM where information is available about Mormonism so at least people can see how it differs from traditional Christian churches . Especially why we celebrate Christmas .
I think another thing that bothers me is that these other Christian groups invite the Mormons to participate in this concert. Who else would they invite? Would Jim Jones’ People’s Temple have gotten an invite. How about David Koresh and the Branch Dividians? How about Warren Jeffs and his FLDS cult. It would appear that it doesn’t take much to snag an invite to this event. Doesn’t appear to be any criteria.
Will you please delete my post that is in moderation. I decided I didn’t feel like starting an argument. Thanks.
Maybe its best to stick with just pointing out and educating folks why Mormonism isnt a Christian tradition? I dont know, but maybe its a good thing that they are singing Christian hymns, dont we want all people glorify our God?
Even though I am not Mormon anymore, I still sing some of the songs that we used to as long as they “fit” and I also bow my head and pray with my Mormon family. I wont sing “Hie to kolob though!”
I do have a sort of Mormon hymn story. My wife and I were taking an LDS wagon ride around the woods, hills and valleys of Nauvoo when the old guy with the reins in his hands stops the wagon. Now understand that my wife and I were the only non-LDS in the wagon. Anyway the guy stops the wagon and tells a Joseph Smith in the grove story and began to lead the group in singing some song that they would have all learned in primary. Well that was pretty awkward given the fact that my wife and I had never heard the song and wouldn’t have been inclined to sing it anyway. The whole point of the exercise was to create an ambiance so the LDS folks would think they were having a spiritual experience.
That’s really the point of hymns, isn’t it? To bring glory to God…….but that all depends on who the god is you have in your head I suppose. I don’t know if I’d sing a song that was intended by the writer to glorify a man who became a god. That’s just me! I may be a little more sensitive to these things than the average person.
BTW………………..if the LDS missionaries came knocking at my door could I tell them that I am a Mormon? I don’t believe Joseph Smith was a prophet, that the BoM is inspired scripture, that the LDS church is the one true church or that Thomas Monson is a prophet of God. I pose this because aren’t Mormons wanting to claim to be Christian yet they can’t check off any of the basic doctrines of the Christian faith as believing in them. My point is, I’m a stickler for definitions and criteria. That keeps everything real!
I dont agree with you saying if lds sing christian hymns it glorifies God. It enemies of the cross singing but not to our God but to their false created god.
Paul rebuked a demon possessed girl even though she was speaking the truth. Also I dont agree about praying with mormons even if they are family. I tell mormons whowho come to my house, I will pray but they cannot. I pray for them but not with them. The bible again teaches, how can light and darkness have fellowship with each other?. They cannot.
Thanks RickB – I’ll think on that one.
@Falcon – ya I do agree with you on needing definitions, otherwise words have no meaning. Mormons will argue that they believe in the God of the Bible and in Christ and that he is the savior and that’s what makes them Christian, but they really have no right to try and come and redefine what Christianity…..they are a little late in the game. They feel its an insult to be called not a Christian. Joseph Smith didn’t have a problem with not being identified as Christian so why should Mormons.
Falcon you said your a stickler for keeping to the real definotions and criteria. I am to. Christians can be just as bad as mormons in getting wrapped up about things being ok if it feels ok. It not about our feelings or ideas in our head. Just like going 10 miles over the speed limit on the interstate feels safe to me, its still against the law and if im caught i will pay a penalty. Proverbs 14:12 and Proverbs 16:25 explain how easy it is to feel that what we are doing is ok but if it doesnt line up with what God said than it leads to death. Every act of worship or act that we do in the name of the Lord had better be something he told us to do. God is merciful and full of grace but also he is just and holy. Our feelings and thoughts do not justify wprshiping or memorializing Him in whatever way we want to.
I have been saying for years, on and off this blog, if mormons want to be called christian, then I will call myself Mormon and preach the gospel I believe. They all tell me I cannot do that and claim it’s wrong. When I ask why they can, they simply claim, well that’s different.
I know rick and I can come across as pretty hard core maybe even a tad bit in-your-face when we comment but I think it has more to do with our fervor than a desire to wop people. 🙂
We are in a spiritual battle and the lines are clearly drawn between light and darkness. I think part of my objection to singing a Mormon hymn would have to do not only what god I’d be glorifying but also the impression I’d give to non-Christians.
Let me give an example. Let’s say I had a family member who I was very fond of and had a good relationship with. But the rub is, the person is an active homosexual. This person decides to marry their partner and wants me to attend the ceremony. What would I do? As much as I personally liked the person, I couldn’t attend the wedding. Would I send a gift? Probably not.
If the extended family was having a reunion would I go and interact with the gay family member? That I’d do simply because there would be a lot of other sinners there too including myself. We all sin and fall short of the glory of God. Sin is sin. I don’t have to condone the behavior but I can be polite, at least in the instance.
That’s a long way of saying I wouldn’t sing Mormon hymns, especially with family members.
@RickB Very true, I’ve thought of similar analogies before too.
Hmm …Now I’m all nervous. Maybe I’ll make my husband say the Thanksgiving prayer this year. My mom usually does, and shes the only Mormon at the table, the rest are agnostic except mine.
So what about the Isreal in the beginning before it was revealed that their God was the most high and later that he was the only God. They were henothiestic at first yet still worshiped the God of Moses. Is that ok because they were ignorant?
I feel bad for my family who really wants to know God, and really think they are following the God of the Bible, but have been led into a worse ignorance than the Isrealites.
Did you notice when God gave the ten commandments to Moses, He started with what?
The main problem with these folks was their idolatry. But when God had them hauled off for seventy years during the Babylonian Captivity, they had enough of it.
That’s why the “Who is God?” question is so huge. Do the LDS folks know who God is? No they don’t. But what happens is that they have this sort of nice wrapper that obscures who their God is. But they have all of this sincerity and devotion and temple rituals……………it just can’t be anything bad.
Problem is it’s all for nothing and worse. I don’t think God is impressed with a people who try really hard to live a righteous life style, but who don’t know Him. And worse, they substitute another god and worse than that, they think they are going to be gods.
I couldn’t sing their hymns no matter how generic.
As far as Thanksgiving goes, you could do what George Castanza’s father did on Seinfeld and create your own holiday with rituals. They did the “airing of grievances” and “feats of strength”.
Three minutes to brighten your day!
Adam, Job, Noah and Abraham all knew God. Notice that they even built alters to give offerings to God. How did they know to do this before Mt Sinai? Because the law was always there. It just wasnt written down yet. It was passed on orally from generation to generation. The event at Mt Sinai was the revealing of Gods character and nature to those delivered out of Egypt and the forming of a covenant between the people and God. This was when the instructions were written down and the tabernacle was built.
People make choices. Its always been a choice from the very beginning. Do we serve ourselves or God?
@Cattyjane – are you talking about the Law written on the heart when you refer to the one that was already there since Adam? Then the people outside of Israel in the beginning, did they also have this inner law but chose not to follow it – which then led to the worship of idols and demons, or did they not have it and that is why they worshiped idols and demons because they were connected with their own sinfulness?
Adam and Eve were taught by God in the garden; im sure more than just eat or dont eat. Look at the story of Cane and Abel. Abel knew the right thing to do but chose not to do it. Was it the Angel of the Lord that confronted him? I cant remember and im on my phone atm. Messengers from God were very active in peoples lives during this time. How did Noah know how to build the boat? What happened at the tower of Babel? How did Lot escape Sodom and Gamorrah? It wasnt some inner feeling. People were given warnings by prophets and messengers but they go their own way.
Look at the story of King Jereboim. Thats a good example of knowing right but choosing wrong because of earthly gains. Remember the rich mans prayer in the NT from the depths of Sheol. He asks the angel to return and warn his brothers not to fall into the same fate he did. The response was, they have Moses and the prophets. If they dont listen to them they wont listen at all. Or something to that effect. You will have to look it up. Im scriptureless atm.
Cattyjane, you said Abel did wrong, I believe you ment Cain did wrong.
Catty, I have to point out that if these old OT figures did not need a written law because they already knew it, that has significant import when we talk about what Christ did and what Paul talk’s about.
We also have to ask specifically what law they knew about. And yes, people make choices, both good and bad, and as such, what role does this unwritten law play in how they make choices? Does it make a difference if the laws are written on paper or not?
I was thinking this week about “choice” or “free will”. I think our gene pool is pretty polluted. The way some people are wired, I don’t know how much choice they really have. That’s why I meditate regarding God’s grace and His election. I’ve discussed some, in the past, regarding how God drew me to Himself. His conviction was so heavy upon me that it was if I couldn’t resist Him any more. He also sustains me in my faith.
I’ve observed so many messed-up people who continue to make bad choices that I don’t know how they could possibly believe on their own. Believe me, I’m not trying to convince anyone regarding my thoughts concerning election. I really don’t know how it works and I’m certainly not a “universalist”. However I call upon our former Mormons. Do you think you came to God on your own?
You said, “So what about the Isreal in the beginning before it was revealed that their God was the most high and later that he was the only God. They were henothiestic at first yet still worshiped the God of Moses.”
Israel was never polytheistic (or henotheistic as a type of) at any point before, as you said, they were “revealed … later that he was the only God.” That is the assumption you have made behind your current argument but your assumption needs to be addressed first. Where do you get the idea in the OT that Israel were polythesists at any point?
MistT: Maybe thats a debated matter I dont know.
They were falling into idolatry so it seems they thought other gods existed at one time.
Thus the Israelites lived among the Canaanites, the Hittites, the
Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; they
took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters
to their sons; and they served their gods
Judges 3:7 The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD; they forgot the LORD their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs.
I dont know who this guy is- just looked this up quick to see what I could find and browsed it quickly – but this is pretty much how I understood it from sources I have learned from. I’m not very good with OT stuff though.
I’m not trying to make an argument for anything, just pointing out that God was merciful and accepted worship from people who were ignorant about him so maybe thats something to think about. Some of the leaders were definitely worshiping the golden calf but I dont know about the majority of sheep. I know a few Christians who go to church regularly, but really don’t know anything about the trinity either. I know way more intellectually about God and the Bible than my husband and he’s been Christian his whole life, he however knows God in the heart better.
I could be a lil different here, but I think God has always heard my prayers even when I was mormon and thought maybe he had a body.
@Falcon – “Do you think you came to God on your own?”
Of course not. My rebellious spirit moved me through Mormonism, partial agnosticism, new age, and a million other strange ideas into Christianity. He hasn’t abandoned me, He’s slowly leading me just as he did with Israel.
I agree with you on the polluted gene pool, and also believe God is very merciful. To those who have much is expected much, and the opposite is true. I believe he is not apart from us and reveals himself to people who seek in whatever ways he can despite their situation or belief system, some will not have the opportunity to come to the full knowledge of Christ in this life.
Deut 4:35 To you it was shown, that you might know that the Lord is God; there is no other besides him.
Deut 4:39 know therefore today, and lay it to your heart, that the Lord is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other.
Deut 6:4 Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Deut 32:39 See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand.
Notice that these were written by Moses before the verses you referenced. Eventually the Lord would have this conversation with a scribe in his day, Mark 12:29, 32:
Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. …'” And the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that he is one, and there is no other besides him.
And we know from Scripture that all Scriptures are God-breathed, 2 Tim 3:16: All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness
So the inspired Scriptures show that these passages are referring to monotheism, not polytheism. The only people who argue that the early Israelites were polytheists are people who deny the divine inspiration of the word of God, which is of course outside of the bounds of Christianity.
Also, notice how when the gods of the nations are mentioned they are ontologically inferior to the one God of the Israelites, not only in relative position to the Tribes but also in the very being of their divinity to the point that their very divinity is rejected: Ex 15:11; Deut 32:31; 33:26; 1 Sam 2:2; Sam 7:22; 1 Kgs 8:22-23; 1 Chr 17:20; Ps 86:8; Ps 89:6, 8; etc.
And you said, “just pointing out that God was merciful and accepted worship from people who were ignorant about him so maybe thats something to think about.” With all due respect that would be something to think about if it were true, but since that’s not the case then it’s not really worth considering seriously. I hope you can fully step away from this and come the Scriptures and the Lord knowing that the Israel of God has never accepted polytheism even in ignorance.
Let’s see, off of the top of my head. God calls Abram and tells him to leave where he’s at and go some place else. Must have been a reason for that perhaps beyond just the promise of land, seed and blessing. I’m thinking that quite possibly it was to move Abram from the Ur of the Chaldees because of the idolatry…….maybe.
The Abrahamic Covenant provided a place/land (the Palestinian Covenant). The seed were the people to populate that land (the Davidic Covenant). The blessing, what might that have been (the New Heart Covenant-Jeremiah 31:31-34)?
What did the Angel Gabriel have to say to Mary about this Son who she would bear and give birth to. This Son will be given the “throne”, the “house” and a “Kingdom” (Luke 1:32-33).
@MT – Ah ok, got it, so they didn’t actually believe in the idol/gods they were worshiping, they were just being disobedient and wanted whatever “pleasures” came along with the idolatry?
Just to clarify though, I wasn’t trying to imply that God ever accepted polytheism or that it was taught in scripture, I get that.
@cattjane – “Every act of worship or act that we do in the name of the Lord had better be something he told us to do.”
I’m curious what direction you are going as far as worship goes since you now believe Jesus is the messiah. I’m in a simliar spot now that I got Jesus down ok, worship is what I’m studying next. I cant believe how long this takes! You don’t have to answer that though.
To bad Brigham Young wasn’t leading the Mormon church today , that would make it a lot easier for people to learn how different Mormonism is . Today though , Mormon leaders is such a P.R. driven
bunch that people can get fooled by them very easy and see them as just another Christian church in the neighborhood , and especially when Mormons claim that by common dictionary definition of “Christian ” they qualify ( they do ) , but if people would take the time to get beyond the public
advertisements created by the Mormon church P.R. Dept , and also ask the necessary hard questions to Mormon missionaries then the true identity of Mormonism will be ascertained allowing people to make an more informed decision about it .
Mormon leaders at any time can teach at next Conf. a new view about God , some ” new light ”
that they would state is truthful . They might even put that teaching into a hymn for LDS to sing .
This has happened in their history under Brigham Young’s tenure as President of the Church , and today’s leaders can again follow that pattern . In 1856 the following hymn was sung at one time by LDS in England from their hymnal , page 375 , and was titled ” We Believe in Our God ” :
” We believe in our God , the great Prince of his race,
The Archangel Michael , the Ancient of Days ,
Our own Father Adam , earth’s Lord as is plain ,
Who’ll counsel and fight for his children again .
We believe in His Son , Jesus Christ , who in love,
To his brethren and sisters, came down from above ,
To die to redeem them from death , and to teach
To mortals and spirits the Gospel we preach .
We believe in the Spirit most holy , that is given ,
From God our great Father , who dwells high in heaven ,
To instruct and enlighten , to comfort and cheer —
Tongues, dreams, visions, healings proclaim it is here .
[ cited in ” Adam is God ? ” by Chris Vlachos , p. 15 ]
No doubt there are Mormons today who still believe Brigham’s new revealment concerning our God , but it goes without saying that if Mormons would sing such a hymn today it would put a dent in their polished public P.R. activity . Mormons are hesitant admit in public venues to other
teachings about God their leaders have taught even in the last several decades , it’s dodge , downplay or even deny them , whatever response best fits the occasion .
I say bring back Brigham Young ! At least the public would stand a better chance to see what Mormonism teaches without a polished P.R. Dept running interference for it . People deserve that much .
Worship? Now that’s something we’ve never covered here. My friend Andy Watson told me he was never in an LDS worship service that wasn’t like a funeral. Sounds pretty dull and boring! Micah Wilder talks about being in a class at BYU and the instructor showed a clip of a Christian worship service and was slamming it. Micah’s response was that he liked it and this was long before he became a Christian.
I think of what the NT tells us about being a living sacrifice to God. So I think that means that our lives are really a form of worship. I grew-up going to Mass everyday (in elementary school) said in Latin. The whole point of the Catholic Mass of course is the consecration of the wine and bread which their theology teaches becomes the actual Body and Blood of Christ. It’s called transubstantiation. That’s an interesting form of worship! We also had a lot of holy water sprinkling and incense burning. Every once in a while they’d do a twenty-four hours of adoration. A consecrated host was placed in this gold ornate holder and people would sign-up to be sure that someone would be in the church at all times during that twenty-four hour period. All the lights were out and candles lit. Folks would be in the church praying. Worship? It comes in a lot of different forms depending on what a person believes.
I feel like Mr. Peabody and his boy Sherman and the Way Back Machine of the Rocky and Bullwinkle show.
MistakenTestimony and Makeitshine
MIstakenTestimony you just earned like 10 points for your answer! Good post! I just got on here and saw all the responses. Yes they always knew who the one true God was but they got drawn away by the ways of the pagan nations around them. God instructed them to not be led astray by the heathens and to not even ask about their ways of worship Jeremiah 10:3 and Deuteronomy 12:30. People forget easily who God is and what is right. A good is example of this is the seeds that fall on the different types of soil Matthew 13 or when a man looks in a mirror and walks away only to forget what his face looked like James 1:23-24.
Makeitshine I worship Him by my obedience in doing the things that He commanded us to do.
“………………..doing the things that He commanded us to do.”
It’s not about “doing”, it’s about “believing”. Faith is the foundation of our relationship with God, it’s not “doing” rules. Behavior is the result of our faith.
“And without faith it is impossible to be well-pleasing unto him ; for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that seek after him.” (Hebrews 11:6)
There are a lot of very moral people who have no relationship with God what-so-ever. So they are “doing” but they are not “believing”.
1 John 3:21-24 says:
21 Dear friends,h if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before Godi 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. 23 And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24 The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.
The command is to believe and to love one another. When we come to Christ in faith we are born again by the Spirit of God. We believe, come into a relationship with the Father through the Son and comport ourselves in a manner that is consistent with our faith. We are not governed or constrained by rules, laws or ordinances. Our motivation for godly living is faith which is then expressed by love for God and one another.
Cattyjane brought up the parable of the sower. Thats a great example. Here’s how I understand it.
The Sower is God, and the seed is His Word (Christ). The ground is our hearts. Some of us have hard hearts and cannot receive the Word of God, some hear, but it does not take root because it is not tended to. Why do some have hard hearts and some have fertile ground? How do we prepare our heart to receive the word?
We believe in Jesus, and because we have faith in him, we listen and obey him. He tells us take up our cross and follow him. Prayer, keeping his commandments, helping the poor, those things help us to prepare our hearts to receive the Word so that it can take root. We do the works because of our faith and love and our desire to follow him. Its not Works that save, because works can be done for the wrong reasons. Its the Word, Christ himself that saves, but are we prepared to receive him?
I think believers are the sowers.
1 Corinthians 3:6-8
6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. 7 So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.
“So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth. 8Now he who plants and he who waters are one; but each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. 9For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.”
The Corinthians were dividing themselves up according to their favorite guy. Paul tells them to knock it off but in the admonishment we get a lesson on sowing, watering, reaping.