Very true and well written. Here we are in Utah in the middle of an immigration
debate and the media has not even looked to see what the Book of Mormon might
say about it.For example, the Savior explains to the Nephites in 3
Nephi 21:22-24 that the land has been given by Him to the "remnant"
(indigenous Americans) for their inheritance. These verses need to be read in
the greater context of the full chapter, but the Savior says that the
non-indigenous "gentiles" must repent. He says that if the the
"gentiles" repent they can "numbered among" the remnant. The
"gentiles," having repented, will then have the conditional privilege
of "assisting [His] people, the remnant" to "build a city which
shall be called the New Jerusalem." Of course, this is my interpretation,
but the language seems pretty clear to me.There are many more
passages throughout the Book of Mormon on this same subject. If the members of
the media read and understood the Book of Mormon, they will be able to frame
better questions for the upcoming public immigration debates in Utah.
Yes! Well written articles on this subject are hard to come by. The media is not
interested in truth. The media is interested in sensationalism, in pleasing the
"natural man." As for the immigration issue, I wish everyone
would call it by its correct name, "illegal immigration." We do not
have an "immigration" problem. We are a nation of immigrants. My
ancestors came to America legally, learned English, established themselves as
upstanding citizens of "the promised land." They adopted what they
called "the American culture." Please, let's call the problem by
its real name, "ILLEGAL" immigration.
When I was a missionary in the mid 1950s, my companion and I gave away a case of
BoM every month. Each case held 30 copies. All of our missionary work at that
time was door-to-door tracting, and if people wouldn't let us in, we would ask
them if we could give them a copy of the Book of Mormon. I've wondered if any of
those copies are still around.
To "Hoping,"This should not be a forum for the immigration
debate, or I would take the time to fully answer your claims. Nonetheless,
putting "illegal" in front "immigration" is akin to putting
"cult" after "L.D.S." One shouldn't yell fire in a crowded
room.This is a forum about whether the media are reading the Book of
Mormon. Immigration was just a an example to pique the attention of the media to
what the book actually says.
People ask me questions about the book of Mormon constantly. People say to me,
how is the book of Mormon real? I always respond that the bible is the story of
people in the middle east, that is the ones that opted to stay there, versus the
people that left the continent to come here to the Americas. Then they say, well
is evidence available. I said, first of all the ancient Hebrews did not speak
modern Hebrew, but a nearly extinct form of aramaic which is not used today. And
the people that can speak it, are a very small group of academics. I also tell
them, the book of Mormon compliments the old and new TESTAMENT of Jesus Christ.
They always close their mouth, and pause for a few.
"The stories of Kishkumen and his band of Lachoneus, Captain Moroni, the
Ammonites and Cumorah have great relevance to modern issues of war, terror and
peace. The stories challenge and warn. Their meanings could shape discourse.
Yet, you cant find these characters and ideas, so rich and full in our Mormon
lives, meriting any mention in the press."Lane, do we as LDS
REALLY think the press or non-LDS world is going to look to the stories in the
BofM for direction to pressing issues? Do we even think prominent LDS
politicians are going to invoke the name of Kishkumen or Captain Moroni as they
run for highest office or lead our nation? Say the name "Kishkumen"
even once on record and Romney would be toast.I appreciate our
unique LDS worldview. But we shouldn't be surprised that the rest of the world
does not find that it fits into their's.
To-"NYMORMON"I may get banned from this site as this is my
first post. As I am not part of or support the LDS. Could you tell
me if this statement is true from your teachings? Which Mormon Missionaries
Won't tell me "They will be reluctant to tell you that the God
they worship was not always God." "We have imagined and
supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea, and take
away the veil, so that you may see." (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph
Smith, pg. 345)
6 Billion?... that's err right!
Nomad - I can answer that question, even though you didn't ask me. Traditional
mormonism taught that "man is as god once was, and is god is man may
become." In other words, the god of this world is not the same god that has
been over all of eternity. There are gods plural. Man may become a god if he
does right, and therefore, would have his own worlds. So the god we worship was
once a mortal man. This was taught - as you referenced - by Joseph Smith and
other early apostles and prophets. That doctrine has now become almost ignored,
and I doubt you will find modern quotes reflecting this idea. The world of
mormonism is changing.
Nomad: The correct answer and is still taught in The Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-Day Saints is that each of has the ability to become like God. As man is
God once was and as God is, man may become is correct in all that it says.We are all heirs to the Kingdom of God, just as Christ is heir to the
Fathers Kingdom. The only God we worship, is our Heavenly Father and only him.
Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost make up the rest of the God Head which has one
purpose and only one purpose and that is, "For this is my work and my glory
to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." As spirit
children we each took upon us the covenant that we would come to this earth and
be tested. We would gain knowledge of Good and Evil. Such as the bible teaches
that we became as the Gods knowing good and evil when our first parents partook
of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Today there are living prophets
living on the earth that lead the affairs of Christ Church on the earth.
Brahmabull, I would like to thank you for your response. So with mornonism
they are looking to become a god? That would go against all of Born Again
Christian views. So bottom line in Mormonism is a denial of the
deity of Jesus Christ. In Revelation 1:8, Jesus Christ proclaims
that He is Almighty God!So Mormons use the Bible, but it is NOT
their final authority as it is for the Christian. Their authority lies in the
writings of Joseph Smith and their Doctrine and Covenants statement?
To Nomad,I'm surprised your comment actually got to the board
because it is off-topic, but I don't think you should be banned unless you are
deliberately "baiting" on this forum. There is no way to tell here
whether you and Brahamabull are actually the same person.If you're
real, please don't take Brahamabull to be an authoritative responder. His answer
should also not have been posted here by my opinion. I suggest you look for
another forum on a different site to get your sincere answers. You'll find those
both for and against the LDS Church, but if you're sincere about understanding
LDS beliefs you'll want to at least get an authoritative L.D.S. answer. You
could try search for "fair lds apologetics" to get some answers to
your good question.
To New Yorker,I am asking these questions because I have just moved
here. The 1st week that I moved into my home two men asked me what religion I
was which struck me as odd. Now I see that Mr Romney is in the news and read
that he was a follower of LDS.
NoMad - you will find a lot of different responses within the church to the
"difficult" questions like the one you posed.Some will
truly not know the answer as the typical lifelong LDS member's education does
not always include these types of issues. Some will readily admit and embrace
them - it is one of the reasons I respect Bill in Nebraska. Some will know about
them but want to deemphasize them. Even our former prophet said "I don't
know that we teach this" when asked the same question you did. And some,
like me, know it was taught but are comfortable defining some things as opinion
rather than revelation/doctrine.The LDS church certainly believes
some things that you will not find in mainstream christianity or that may
conflict with mainstream christianity. But LDS believe in ongoing revelation. If
you can't accept ongoing revelation then the church may not be for you. There
are plenty of christian churches who believe revelation stopped with the final
page of the Bible. Mormonism is certainly more dynamic, controversial and
exciting than the idea that all truth ceased coming to earth a couple of
thousand years ago.
To Nomad,It might be a good feature of this forum if we could turn on and
off messaging with the forum as a moderator. We'd have to be able to specify
user names we would accept messages from. That's not going to happen in the near
future, so I don't know how to bridge the gap. Try that search I suggested and
best wishes to you!
To Idaho Coug,As of today you were the most upfront person to
answerer any type of question from me. Either in person or via Blog. I commend
you for your acts. As "New Yorker" thank you for giving me
information which I am reading now.
NoMad, Thank you for your dignified questions and honest inquiry. I won't lie to
myself, because I am converted person, who also has bipolar disorder. And
sometimes, my actions are not Saint like. Many of us strive to become exalted,
and many of us don't. But we all strive to be Christ like. Other churches view
Jesus Christ as god. We view him as a part of the god head. Our father sent him
down to suffer for remission of sin. We also believe that baptism and faith
alone are not enough, but works are as just as important.Born Again Christian
views, are often one sided, and often can be considered extremes. There are no
absolutes accept we will be judged. God has what is called the book of life. Its
a record of our works here.Why would Christ come down as god and then say,
father it's finished. He payed for our salvation with suffering that none 0f us
could imagine. Born again movement says baptism is not needed, but faith alone.
I'll take a stab at NoMad's question, and respond to Bill in Nebraska also. You
have already noted, Idaho Coug's response was fair and accurate. The fact is,
the little couplet everyone is throwing around "as man is..." was
contrived by Lorenzo Snow, the fifth Prophet in Mormon history. You have
additionally cited Joseph Smiths remarks given at a funeral, and popularly
referred to as The King Follet Discourse. So the question is, what do Mormons
believe? That depends on perspective, and as Bill points out - perspectives
vary. Church leaders all the way down to Joseph Smith did in fact teach this
doctrine, while Gordon B. Hinckley has denied it. Bill mentions that while
Mormons do believe in a plurality of deities, we are only beholden the God of
the Old Testament and Jesus Christ. He would do well to study McConkies, J.
Fielding Smith, Brigham Y, and Joseph Smiths teachings on Eternal Progression
via "continuation of the seeds". In short God is all knowing and all
powerful, so he only progresses by being glorified through the expansion of his
Kingdom. This is a downline expansion, so implicitly we also Glorify God. You
decide what that means.
Last sentence should read:So we also glorify Gods God!The point is, God progresses by expanding the borders of his Kingdom through
"bringing to pass the immortality and Eternal life of man". This is an
ongoing and exponential process, or so the discourses suggest. In theory were I,
or you, or anyone else, to become an exalted being according to the Mormon plan
of salvation, we would begin to do the works of God, our Father. In other words,
we would create worlds and people them with hopeful candidates for Godhood,
thereby effecting the increase of our own glory as a downline
"seemingly" tapped into a singular downline of infinite deities - and
this lasting into the Eternities. To couch against the abrasiveness of this
doctrine against mainstream Christian sensibilities, many members will respond
by saying - "yeah, but we will never exceed "our" Gods stature
and divinty, so he will always be our God". They say this while ignoring
Joseph Smith's comments that all such things are "one Eternal round",
and the implication that THEREFORE, God's God will always exceed him in stature
and greatness...so mabey we do actually worship a plurality of
Mormoncowboy - way to jump right to the 20 oz. sirloin steak before even a small
glass of milk ;)
Bill in Nebraska - it seems as if you are wrong yet again. The church doesn't
recognize this "man may become god" doctrine anymore and teach it as
you claim. Here is what Hinckley said about it.Question by time:
about that, God the Father was once a man as we were. This is something that
Christian writers are always addressing. Is this the teaching of the church
today, that God the Father was once a man like we are? Answer by
Gordon B. Hinckley: I don't know that we teach it. I don't know that we
emphasize it. I haven't heard it discussed for a long time in public discourse.
I don't know. I don't know all the circumstances under which that statement was
made. I understand the philosophical background behind it. But I don't know a
lot about it and I don't know that others know a lot about it.He
clearly states he hasn't heard it taught in a long time and isn't sure, so the
church doesn't teach it. I forgot that it doesn't matter because he is deceased
I was watching one of those endlessly mimicked gritty crime dramas once, CSY or
NBCBS, or SUV or some such title. The suspect du jour was a teenage boy who was
controlling the minds of teenage girls and inciting them to commit the usual
bloody atrocities. The intrepid investigators searched his bedroom, and lo and
behold, found The Book of Mormon.
A good place to start may be whenever a Church member has a chance to talk to
the media that htey discuss the Book of Mormon and maybe even quote from it in a
limited and relevant way.I think the work of Grant Hardy and Teryl
Givens among many others is helping. There is a growing scholarly engagement
with the Book of Mormon. I at least am still under the condemnation
for not reading and studying the Book of Mormon as I ought. We can not hope to
quote and intellectually engage the Book of Mormon unless we regularly read and
study it. If we want others to seriously engage the Book we have to read it and
apply it and not just give vocal praise to it.
To Brahmabull: Have you read President Hinkley book THE TEACHINGS OF PRESIDENT
HINKLEY? If not then you will find that the he follows the teachings of Joseph
Smith and Lorenzo Snow. The only difference is that the first part A MAN IS,
GOD ONCE WAS is removed. Otherwise it is basically there. Now the question is
since we believe God the Father is an exhalted being and that each of us has the
ability as well to be exhalted what does that mean to you. On the
basis of polygamy I will concede partially that the Church uses the word
DOCTRINE pertaining to the practice of Polygamy but the doctrine is still there,
not the practice. Basically what I said last week. Marriage between man and
woman as doctrine has not changed.Your comments pertaining to
Mormonism changing is false and misleading. What is taught is taught. Not only
by President Hinkley but by President Monson today. Remember to be exhalted one
must have been man at one time since we were created in HIS image. God the
Father has a body of flesh and bones just as we have. This is clearly taught in
the LDS Church.
"Remember to be exhalted one must have been man at one time since we were
created in HIS image. God the Father has a body of flesh and bones just as we
have." Then why remove that from "The Teachings of Gordon
If one takes the time to study and consider that: organized religion is a
non-profit corporation doing business as a church; and like other enities they
are constantly re-packaging, designing new labels and updating their sales
presentation to improve sales and expand markets, and politics and money are
major tools they use. And so things are always changing.
To Mormoncowboy: The words are removed not the teaching. In other words only
thing mentioned is AS GOD IS,MAN MAY BECOME. The rest is basically taught that
our Heavenly Father is an exhalted man just as we can become exhalted. SO the
teachings really doesn't change. So nothing really has changed. Joseph Smith
taught it, Lorenzo Snow taught it and President Gordon B Hinkley taught it.
Just didn't use the same wording, but the teaching is the same.
Bill - I'm sorry you feel that I am misleading. I think that because you can't
come up with a reason for Gordon B. Hinckley saying polygamy is "NOT
DOCTRINAL" that you have to attack what I am saying. I am forthright and
honest. I am an active member of the church, not an apostate as some think. Just
because I stand for truth and honesty doesn't make me dishonest. I think our own
church is dishonest when it edits its own history. That bothers me, and I think
the church loses credibility for doing so. Just like when the church published
it's 'history of the church' books it changed a couple of things pertaining to
the word of wisdom. These changes, to me, are unnecessary. Joseph
Smith admitted that he "Drank a glass of beer at Moessers". How nice
of the church to delete that 1 phrase out when they printed their history of the
church. also, Joseph Smith asked "Brother Markham" to go
get a "pipe and some tobacco" for Willard Richards. That has been
changed to "medicine" in the History of the church. Why edit your own
history, it makes you look dishonest.
RTMESSENGER:If I could suggest... why not ask the Church? Wouldn't
you rather the publishers of the very book this article is about defend their
own position? In fact, I would recommend that approach for anyone with questions
for any demonination or organization. There are authorized LDS
Church representatives online where you can ask questions, and you can even find
the Church in the phone book.While the DN message board can be a
very colorful and interesting place to visit, the comments are, for the most
part, personal opinion or interpretation.Anyway, that's my opinion.
@idaho_coug i loved your comment thanks!"and that it teaches
that Christ visited America."i wasnt aware that you guys had finally
established the book of mormon geography? so awesome!"the fact
that the Book of Mormon reached the milestone of 150 million copies printed.
That is a milestone worth acknowledging"why is printing a lot
of books a milestone worth acknowledging? it is at least a milestone for the
lumber industry, but is quite diminished in the light of ballard's recent talk
where he said that they would be dissolving 147 wards and creating 121 new ones
(loss of 26 wards) in salt lake?
"If the Book of Mormon is true then apostles and prophets walk the earth;
then there is life after death; then families can be eternal; then there is
purpose and meaning in life; then there is reason for hope, and then Jesus
really is the Christ."If the Book of Mormon is true....then
Jesus really is the Christ.?The Bible makes this quite clear...so why
would journalists coverthe BOM as it apparently doesn't teach anything
Of course Bill!
Bill in Nebraska believes, As man is God once was and as God is, man may become
is correct. But God is unchanging per BoM .For I know that God is not a
partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable form all
eternity to all eternity. Moroni (8:18)In the beginning was the
Word, and the Word was with God and the Word(Jesus)was God. And the Word was
made flesh(incarnation)(John 1:1,14).God becomes man not man becomes God.
Mormons want to be a god while Christians want to be with God.Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of
the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man
As man is God once was and as God is, man may become is correct. said Bill in
Nebraksa.But God is unchanging per BoM .For I know that God is not a
partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable form all
eternity to all eternity. Moroni (8:18)In the beginning was the Word, and
the Word was with God and the Word(Jesus)was God. And the Word was made
flesh(incarnation)(John 1:1,14).God becomes man not man becomes God.
Mormons want to be a god while Christians want to be with God.Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of
the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man
RTMESSENGER ,Messenger, first off your basing studies on DNA. Also,
30,000 years is not accurate because carbon dating is not as accurate as they
represent. Also, many physics professors happen to be Christians, and at the
same time state god does not measure time to way we do.There is
great evidence to suggest that people from the middle east went outward as far
as Europe, Alexander the great conquered several other areas well beyond and
went as far as Asia. How small minded can one be to understand that a bunch of
people from Israel, left for the Americas. Took them awhile and they were guided
by supreme deity. Tell me, do you believe in god? If so, what evidence do you
have that he is real? What this whole discourse comes to do, is faith. I know
the bible is true, and i also know the book of Mormon is true.
"How small minded can one be to understand that a bunch of people from
Israel, left for the Americas. "T'would seem like a curious
starting point for one to end up in the Americas. Something more logical would
be like the Vikings or maybe Zheng He (I think that's who I'm thinking of...)
not the people about as far away as possible from the Americas.
@Bill in Nebraska I am sorry you cant face doctrine changing. Brahmabull makes
great points and if you cant handle the truth I'm sorry.
RTMESSENGER:I appreciate that you have shown your real intentions
early on. I had hoped you were asking a sincere question and not just following
the predictable formula typically used by anti-Mormons. There was always
hope...I, too, have been studying the Church for about 20 years and
am grateful that I have on the many copies of both the Bible and the Book of
Mormon in my possession. Both have brought great joy and enrichment into my
life. I wouldn't trade the knowledge I have for anything! I truly appreciate
those throughout history who have made publication of both scriptures possible.
I'm also sorry to have wasted time with my previous comment.
To goldfever: If you actually studied it you would find that brahmabull is
misleading and lying in stating doctrine has changed. Also, the doctrine never
changed. As God is, man may become is correct doctrine. President Hinkley in
his teachings that brahmabull states that the LDS Church doesn't teach is
totally false. President Hinkley teaches that our Heavenly Father is an exhalted
man, that he has a body of flesh and bones, just as tangible as ours. This is
the same doctrine that Joseph Smith teaches and that all of the Presidents up to
and including President Monson teaches. Just because words are missing doesn't
mean the doctrine changes. Jesus Christ is not God the Father but the Son of
the Living God, our Heavenly Father. The following still stands as far as
Christ is concerned."And now, after many testimonies which have
been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him:
That he lives! For we saw him, evon onthe right hand of God; and we heard the
voice bearing record that he is the Only Begotten of the Father -- That by him,
and through him..."
To RTMESSENGER: I have been interested in your posts because we are
"neighbors." There are many wonderful members of the Church in
Arcadia, CA. Many of them would be willing to answer your questions and
concerns if you visited them at the local congregations.I would like
to respond to a few things you wrote:1. "The BOM is a
fraud." This is what we frequently discuss on these threads. Though your
statement attempts to be definitive, it's clear that it cannot be.2.
"Actually it is an anti-Christian book..." This confuses me. Do you
mean that it's against Christ? Nothing could be further from the truth.3. "There has been zero, repeat zero verifiable evidence of people
from the Middle East migrating to the New World circa 600 BC." Read Thor
Heyerdahl, a non-Mormon who gives good evidence of water-borne emigrants from
the Middle East to the New World. 4. "I know not of any
credible Historian from either central or South America or the world for that
matter that would go on a limb and believe or attest, the BOM is true
History." Read Richard Bushman, for example.
I really think you guys are arguing the wrong thing.As Bill
suggests, the belief that man can become god certainly looks to be church
doctrine.But, this is an uncomfortable concept for both LDS and
Non-LDS.The LDS know that other Christians will beat them up on this
point so it is best to down play it in public.I think Pres Hinkley
found a way to sidestep the question as best he could to placate both sides.If I recall, he said "i don't know that we teach that". He DID not say " we do not believe that"
Bill, You misread and misunderstand the lectures of Joseph Smith concerning the
attributes of God. Lectures on Faith, Q. What is the Father? A. He is a
personage of glory and of power. (5:2.). God[is]spirit(pneuma). (John 4:24 Greek
N.T.)Brigham Young (JOD v 1 p 49-50): "The Lord fills the
immensity of space. What saith the Psalmist[139:7-10]? Whither shall I go from
thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into
heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I
take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
shall thy hand lead me".Clearly Joseph Smith and Brigham Young
changed their minds. Google Devine simplicity
@ Bill - to imply that I am misleading or dishonest is wrong. I am pro-truth,
and that makes me misleading? Your way of thinking is completely off. Just
because I can present the facts and acknowledge them doesn't make me misleading,
it makes me honest. I am sorry you can't be honest with yourself. @joeblow - If you are admitting that Gordon B. Hinckley 'sidestepped' the
question that means he is dishonest. If he didn't want to answer the question,
he could have said 'no comment.' If he was purposely decieving the interviewer
than he was lying. But according to Bill in Nebraska it doesn't matter now
because Hinckley is deceased now and what deceased prophets have said in the
past isn't doctrine, just opinion. Then Bill will go on to quote a scripture
from over 1,000 years ago and calls it doctrine. Just crazy how peoples minds
Brahmabull,I am saying that "man can become god" concept
is a tough one for LDS.Ask any LDS if they believe that a man can
become a god and most will be uncomfortable. Many will deny that belief. As I am not a member, so I will pose the questions to those that are.Isn't there a strait yes or no answer to the question? Why do so
many seem uncomfortable with the question?
What the "man becomes a god" doctrine has to do with this article
(except as a distraction), I don't know. Since it has picked up steam, and I
find myself and the leaders of my church being called "uncomfortable"
or even "dishonest," I thought I would point out that the doctrine is
found quite clearly in D&C 132:20. You may also find a large number of
Biblical references by looking in the LDS topical guide under "Man,
Potential to Become Like Heavenly Father."Rather than quote
Lorenzo Snow or the King Follett Discourse, I think contemporary Latter-day
Saints and their leaders are more comfortable directly with the scriptures.
Personally, I find many non-LDS Christians are uncomfortasble with the doctrine
in the language of the D&C, but they are very comfortable with Romans
8:16-17, or with CS Lewis's statement that God wants us to become like Him.There has been no denunciation, public or otherwise, of the LDS doctrine
that we are the children of God, and that through the atonement of Christ we
become the heirs of the Father--and that we inherit all He has and all He is.
Isn't there a strait yes or no answer to the question? LDS theology
is often not clear cut. You find different leaders confirming or making
statements that seem to displace or at least muddy past statements. On top of
that it seems quite easy to classify past or uncomfortable teachings as opinion.
Ongoing revelation combined with deference to the LIVING prophet combined with a
huge emphasis today on public relations makes clarifying LDS doctrine something
akin to nailing jello to the wall.Why do so many seem uncomfortable
with the question? Because it is one of those things that make us
seem very strange to many. LDS theology is already viewed as non-Christian at
best and cultish at worst. We are a missionary oriented church and in order to
reach the greatest number of people we need to present a message that resonates
as much as possible. Becoming Gods with multiple wives in order to create and
populate multiple worlds does not exactly fit the modern LDS message and image.
At least outside of Colorado City. Other members, such as Bill, are
very comfortable with this and probably bemoan the watering or dumbing down by
NoMadI'll try to explain it too. Gods beyond Gods - Gods meaning Heavenly
Fathers. We all get to be parents in Heaven and that's the glory we're seeking.
We all have only one Heavenly Father, likewise we all have only one earthly
father. Although your earthy father is a differnt one than mine we have only
one Heavenly Father. We were all His sperit children before we were sent from
Heaven to be born with a body. All of Heavenly Father's children will get to
go Heaven and have sperit children and create worlds for them, so they can be
born with bodies. And life goes on. Other wise families are for ever.
Would a Mormon please share what you have learned from the BOM that you
did not learn in the Bible?Many thanks....