How ironic it seems to me- that the article indicates lines between those Quoted
of what makes LDS beliefs out side of the fold of Christ, when it appears the
same limits are not used with others?For instance-1. believing
other written works as scripture besides what is found in the Bible. Isn't
the Apographa (sp?) accepted by some Christians and not by others ? ( LDS
don't canonize it) 2. Don't many Christians understand from the
Bible that Jesus' mother Mary, went on to be the mother of her husband
Josephs children - so Jesus had step brothers and sisters but the
Catholics say she is still a virgin?3. Look at what the Bible itself says
that there were so many more things Jesus did that it is impossible to write
them all, so why do many deny that he could have done what he said he was going
to do -- in visiting "other sheep, not of this fold"? Is tre resurrected
Christ limited to where he can visit on the Earth that he created ? ---
I'm glad I accept only Jesus Christ as the righteous judge of of our
hearts, for wether LDS love/obey Him.
When the election is over, if Romney loses, those on the left will be painted as
anti-LDS.The realities are that some of those on the right are as,
or more anti LDS. This was easily seen during the run-up to the GOP nomination
(and still continues)There will be those who cite the poll saying
that the Dems are less likely to vote for a Mormon, however, it is mainly
because those on the left do not want religion as the main driving force for our
president.And, you gotta hand it to the LDS. They are as religious
as it comes.
Great article......it's nice to hear and see the tide move to the right
with Mormonism. Perhaps having a Mormon President will calm the national view of
our church a little. That would be nice for everybody!
The Bible is the kind of book where one can stake out many different religious
positions, some of them contradictory, yet all from the Bible. Try as I might, I
can't find one LDS position that can't be backed up from the Bible.The mistake mainstream Christianity makes is assuming that the doctrinal
positions that they settled on (at the insistence of a Roman king) in the year
400 are necessarily correct. Where the Bible contradicts itself, often main
stream Christianity often takes one postion and LDS will take an other. Prior to
the year 400, Christians, due to the contradictory nature of so many scriptures
were doctrinally very diverse.I find it ironic, that Jesus himself
would not pass the test of Christianity that main stream Christians use to
exclude LDS from Christianity. A man came to Jesus and asked how he can enter to
the Kingdom. Jesus then proceeded to ask him which of the various commandments
he kept, finally Jesus said one thing you lack, sell all you have and give it to
the poor. Notice Jesus didn't say, accept me as your Savior and then all is
""Making Mormons look bad helps others feel good," wrote J. Spencer
Fluhman of the BYU History Department..."--Persecution anyone?
Certainly there is one stark reality which must be faced by detractors of the
LDS faith:that being the knowledge that all beings on the planet from it's
very beginning are the same species. This includes God the Father, His Son
Jesus Christ, angels, as well as humans past , present, and future. Prior to our
birth on the earth to mortal parents, we all were and are spirit off-spring of
the same heavenly parents: God, the Eternal Father being Father of all spirits
which quicken each mortal frame.
The author appears to have impressive academic credentials in his study of
Mormonism. However, it is not coupled with the Holy Spirit. His take of the Book
of Mormon as "dull" because it speaks too much of Christ entirely misses
the point. Rather than talk too much of Christ, we define who He truly is. It
would be well if the author reads again the Book of Mormon with a little more
humility and faith. I doubt then he would find it "dull".
It is so true that the Book of Mormon is all about Jesus Christ. He is the
central theme, but it is also a book of faith and hope in the saving grace of
His Atonement. How anyone can read this book and not be moved is a mystery to
me. The Book of Mormon changed my life. The Spirit of the Lord pours forth out
of the pages of this book. It seems that a person would have to be determined to
not feel it if he/she didn't. A secular mindset could cause this also. A
person needs to read this book with real desire to know if it is true. I know
that it is true because I have read it many times, have prayed about it many
times and received many confirmations from the Holy Spirit. The Book of Mormon
offers hope in God's deliverance from trials and adversity through Jesus
Christ. By following its precepts, one feels a closeness with God and His Holy
Spirit that strengthens them in their personal life.
I have always believed and observed that LDS doctrine is an expression of the
infinite grace of Christ more than any other Christian faith! Eternal
progression is possible only because of the infinite grace of Jesus Christ!
Salvation for the dead (temple work) and eternal families is possible only
because of the infinite grace of Christ. I have observed that Jesus never
restricted His grace, men and religions do that! This Mormon believes the
atonement is truly infinite and is only restricted by our choices, not the
"the persecution comes from actually taking Christianity to a higher level.
What really gripes our detractors is that we are not Christian, but that we are
more Christain than they are!"Keep up that attitude.
That's gonna really help your cause.
blah blah blah blah. I'm not sure why everyone can't just realize
the semantics driving a wedge between the different christian sects are just
semantics. Its silly.
I do not think it is possible to be "too Christian", whether that be a
belief in Jesus Christ as the Promised Messiah, a transformation of character
that leads one to always be concerned with blessing lives other than his own, or
spending time each day to study the words of prophets of an earlier age. Our
problem as a species has always been that we are not Christian enough. We could
use more true Christianity in this world.It is refreshing, in a way,
to see an academic external to this faith classify The Book of Mormon as being
all about Jesus Christ, especially in light of the books repeated declaration of
being "to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ,
the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations" and that "the
fulness of mine intent is that I may persuade men to come unto the God of
Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, and be saved."
"Making Mormons look bad helps others feel good," wrote J. Spencer
Fluhman of the BYU History Department in an article published in the New York
Times.Interesting choice of words from a BYU Professor, considering
that the LDS church preaches that it is the ONLY true church on the planet,
which, of course, makes all other churches look "bad".
Those on the right are anti-LDS, those on the left are generally anti-religion.
The left doesn't care that Romney is LDS, it's religion in general
they don't take literally.Christians don't see LDS as
Christian because the church added to the requirements for heaven: temple
marriage and attendance, works, tithes, etc. The New Testament says for
salvation one must accept Jesus, it doesn't add other requirements. That is
why Christians don't view LDS as being Christian, just accepting Jesus
Before Mormons feel persecuted by reading the Deseret News about what Christian
leaders say about Mormonism; or watching MSNBC or Bill Maher; please remember
this...These are the outsiders. "Mormons are not Christian"
is certainly not the normal consensus of most mainstream Christians in America.
Well "DUH" The cover of the Book of Mormon says that it is another
testament of Jesus.Ernest T. Bass: The church didn't add
anything to the requirements for heaven. Those requirements that you mentioned
are all over the scriptures.
Re: ClarkKentMormons don't try to make other religions people
look bad. We accept all truth and all good, regardless the source. That The
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church does not
diminish the good of other churches and it certainly does not mean they are bad
(it is a misunderstand of LDS scripture to believe so). Now I know that some
church members at times are less judicious in their choice of words and their
actions than they should be towards other religions but thankfully that trend
has been squashed by LDS Church leadership.Further, Mormons do not
derive pleasure from making others feel or look bad (I know a few church members
do but they do so in opposition to church teachings). We don't even talk
about other churches (anymore - there used to be more of it but we'd never
have classes on what Catholics believe or what Baptists believe and so forth).
There is so much richness to the doctrine of Christ and so much to learn that
there is not time to worry about what other people believe (unless they are
teaching falsehoods about Mormonism).
Re: cjb I can't find one LDS position that can't be backed up from the
Bible.Mormon view: Mormonism declares there are 3 Gods in the
godhead. God was once a man like us before he became a God. God the Father has
a body of flesh and bones.Christian view(Catholic,Protestant): God
has always been God, There is only one God(Triune). God does not change. God the
Father does not have a body of flesh and bones.Mormon view; Jesus is
our elder brother. Lucifer is the brother of Jesus. Jesus is the firstborn
spirit child of the Father. Christ gained exaltation (became a God),All men were
born sons of God in the spirit. Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the
same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.Christian
view(Catholic,Protestant): Jesus created angels including Lucifer. Jesus has
always been God(Aseity), Jesus was a miraculous conception; a virgin(unique
miracle)gave birth by the power of the Holy Spirit. The Jesus of Mormonism was
born at Jerusalem. The Jesus of the Bible was born in Bethlehem.The
Holy Spirit/Ghost, same Greek word(Pneuma) .
Ernest T. Bass wrote:Christians don't see LDS as Christian
because the church added to the requirements for heaven: temple marriage and
attendance, works, tithes, etc. The New Testament says for salvation one must
accept Jesus, it doesn't add other requirements. That is why Christians
don't view LDS as being Christian, just accepting Jesus isn't
enough.ETB: You make an interesting point about adding to the
requirements for salvation...I would suggest that a person who truly
believes and accepts Christ will follow him by doing the good works you speak
of. The person who claims Faith in Jesus Christ but then does not demonstrate
that Faith by the life they live, demonstrates that their belief is in word
only, and lacks the power of salvation.I see no real difference
between the traditional Christian, and LDS views that it is Faith and the Grace
of Jesus Christ that saves. The difference is that Faith claimed, but not
demonstrated by life choices lacks the power to save. Not perfect, but
continually trying to show my Faith by how I live. The two views are just
not as far apart as many would have us believe.
One major thing that sticks out to me in the New Testament that doesn't
seem to be addressed by those of other faiths calling themselves Christian, is
that the Savior commanded those listening to him, "Be ye therefore perfect,
even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Supposedly it is
blasphemous to think that we can become like God. But Christ apparently
didn't think so. It makes a lot of sense to me, and goes right along with
God creating man in His image. When we have those quiet, introspective moments
in life, I think most people recognize that they have potential far greater than
what they are achieving. As much effort as there is in living the LDS religion,
the belief in ultimately divine potential helps me to never stop trying to
become an increasingly better person. On top of that, it is fantastic for
raising children. What parent doesn't want their children to be the very
best they can be? I'm guessing this is the same feeling our Father in
Heaven has toward us.
Check out the excerpt from Stephen Webb's recent book, "Jesus Christ,
Eternal God: Heavenly Flesh and the Metaphysics of Matter," that was
published in BYU Studies last year. The excerpt is titled "Godbodied: The
Matter of the Latter-day Saints." Webb came across Joseph Smith when he was
researching what he calls "an obscure heretical position on the nature of
Jesus Christ" (Heavenly Flesh Christology) and became fascinated with
Joseph's teachings.Webb's perspective on Mormonism
isn't always fully accurate, but it is always insightful, and,
interestingly, Mormons could gain many valuable insights into their own religion
by reading what this professor or religion and philosophy at Wabash College has
to say about their beliefs.
Snowman: Those requirements you mention aren't in the New Testament. Nor
are they in the Old Testament. The NT says you accept Jesus and you're
saved. I realize there is a comment about works but what the intent is,
isn't clear. There is no mention of temple work in the bible, not the way
LDS view temples. Biblical temples had no ceremony similar to LDS ceremonies.
I'm just trying to clarify why Christians don't view LDS
as being Christian. I'm not sticking up for their views, I'm stating
why they see LDS as not being mainstream Christian.There are also big
differences on how both LDS & Christianity interpret God.
@Jared"That The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the
only true church does not diminish the good of other churches"Actually it does. The need to proxy baptize people who were baptized Christian
is an insult to the faith of others (likewise the churches that don't
accept LDS baptisms are insulting to the LDS faith).
I have read the Book of Mormon all the way through more than 50 times. I am at
the point where there are only very few verse you can read to me without me
being able to tell you which book and chapter you are in, and very often I can
tell you the verse number as well. Yet every time I read it I realize that the
book is deeper than I thought. The book is simple enough that I was able to
effectively use it to teach my children to read. Yet that simplicity is
misleading, it is like a game of chess against an opponent you think is making
weak moves, but try as you might you keep falling into traps while trying to
find a way to punish him. To see the depth of the Book of Mormon requires the
Holy Ghost, I do not always have it, but when I do I notice the difference.
This was a very interesting article. I believe it shows that everyone, including
Mormons, are insecure and perhaps pay too much attention to what others think
Professor Fulman’s statement, "With politics and religion so
inextricably linked in our culture,” upsets me because it is true. The
only way that statement should have validity is both religions and politics are
deeply divisive but, sadly, it is evident that many political decisions are
based on individuals making political decisions based on their religious
beliefs. This teaching and practice, to me, violates the basic constitutional
restriction ‘no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification
to any office…” Constitution, Article v1 The founding fathers
included this because England, 12 of the 13 colonies, and several foreign
nations required all public officials to be members of a particular state
approved religious doctrine
@sharronaHate to nit-pick but Mormons do not believe or teach that Christ
was born in Jerusalem. Just wanted to clarify that in my sixty-plus years on
the planet, NEVER have I taught or been taught that Christ was born anywhere but
Bethlehem. Ten miles is not much but NEVER have we taught that the birthplace
was other than Bethlehem.
Each person must define their own faith because when other people try to do it
for you, they are always wrong or at least very incomplete in the attempt!
sharrona "Mormon view;"Your view of the "Mormon
view" is off base. Mistakes are made when you don't quote from
scriptures and add your own interpretations.And this whole "God
once was" and "Man may become" is not LDS scripture but a beautiful
personal interpretation of what is possible in eternity. No beginning and no
end...only progression or damnation. I don't believe Heaven is the end, but
a step to Christ's message to be more perfect. What lies beyond Heaven is
too much to comprehend now and not so important today.
Re: sharrona"The Jesus of Mormonism was born at Jerusalem" -
there's no need to continue spreading tired misconceptions of what that
means - it's been answered many times over the years and backed up by other
ancient religious documents as a common way to refer to an area. Saying Christ
was born at Jerusalem means in the area of Jerusalem (they are only 6 miles
apart) - notice that it doesn't say "in Jerusalem". As a modern
example people in the Seattle area say they are from Seattle but if you ask
them, it's likely that they are from one of the surrounding suburbs.Many of your other stated Catholic/Protestant beliefs about God and
Christ are not particularly Biblical; they come from Greek influences on
Christianity.Mormons believe in living prophets who take precedence
over past scripture (this does not diminish what's been written but
what's most important is what the living prophets teach). This is the case
in the Bible - the teachings of Noah were important for Noah's day but they
were not sufficient for Moses' day or Isaiah's or Christ's or
Peter's or Paul's.
Ernest T. Bass wrote:"Christians don't see LDS as Christian
because..."Stop right there. That is a very narrow
interpretation of Christians. Most Christians don't agree that Mormons are
not Christian. And many agree that to call someone "not Christian" is
not being Christian.
Mormonism is fundamentally different from Traditional Protestant Christianity.
Everyone agress on this. Now, let's see about respecting each other's
views, and agreeing to practice our particular faiths as we see fit. case
I really bristle when I read Mormons claiming that their Church does not attack
, speak badly about, or deride other religions."...they were ALL
wrong; ...ALL their creeds were an abomination in [God's] sight; that those
professors were ALL corrupt; that: 'they draw near to me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of
men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof'" (Pearl of Great Price, Joseph Smith History 1:19).That is a
sweeping indictment and condemnation of all other religions and all other
preachers, pastors, teachers, and leaders of all other religions, and it is
contained in the official, sacred, canonical "scriptures" of the LDS
Church.And that is just the tip of the iceberg. If we were to count
the attacking, critical, demonizing, horrible attacks on other religions and
their leaders that are contained in the Journal of Discourses and many other
writings, lovers of peace would be/should be aghast!
As far as I know, Mormons are the only Christian-based faith who claim they are
the only true church. They go farther than that .. they claim that if you are
given a real opportunity to learn the gospel (meaning the mormon gospel and also
meaning you have to pay 10% of your earnings for the rest of your life to the
mormon church) but you reject that mormon gospel you will not get to live with
God after you die. How insulting is that to other Christian faiths. For you
myopic mormons, try looking at this from an outsider's perspective before
you try to convince your audience about how loving and accepting you are. It
all comes down to money as far as I'm concerned .... more money for the big
corporate church who uses this to scare people half to death about whether or
not they will have the opportunity to return to live with God.
We members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints need to chill a
little. We get upset if people say we are not Christians. Now we are upset
because someone says we are are too Christian. Not everyone is going to have our
beliefs. To condemn someone because they felt the Book of Mormon is dull makes
no sense. The person doesn't have to believe it. Be happy that he at least
read it. It is a start. We need to live our religion and invite others to learn
about our religion. If they don't want to believe it that doesn't mean
to turn our back on them. Look at President Hinckley's relationship with
Mike Wallace. President Hinckley didn't shut him out, they remained
Razzle2: I wasn't attacking anyone. I was referring to the Christians who
claims LDS aren't Christian. My intent wasn't to make a blanket
statement about all Christians, just those born-agains who makes claims about
LDS not being Christian.There are obviously theological differences. The
Old & New Testament say one thing and LDS theology adds to it. That's
my point and it's why some christians don't view LDS as being
SharronaYour view of the LDS is very narrow I see with frequent repetitive
answers to any comment you see that doesn't fit your current view
Ernest has some points but here are some things he forgets or that maintline
Christians don't know about the temple. One the baptismal font in LDS
Temples are the same as the one built in Solomon's temple. The washings
and anointings as mentioned in Exodus are alsom done with in the walls of LDS
Temples. There is the mention of ordinances done within the walls of
Solomon's temple. These ordinances are not spelled out in the Old
Testament. There is some knowledge that some of the symbolism we
use today goes back to the time the Temple of Solomon was built.Therefore this leaves the basis that Joseph Smith didn't create anything
new but RESTORED what had been lost with the destruction of the temple and the
ordinances performed therein.Sharrona we have gone back and forth
pertaining to what Joseph Smith has said of the nature of our Heavenly Father
and what mainline Christians believe. The problem is that there are modern day
Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the earth today just as there were before
the birth of Jesus. Contradictions between LDS is between theology and the
Scientist going back to any prophet of the church in the last 100 yrs find
even one quote where he attacks another religion? Listened to President Hinckley
or Monson lately? No attacks there only advise to respect everyone and service
by the church is provided to everyone regardless of believeGet with the
current you wont have to bristle so much
Dear Joseph Walker: Thanks again for keeping us aware of what others are saying
about the LDS Church and its members. The lack of animosity of
Mormons toward other religions has been documented by the authors of the book
American Grace, based on extensive surveys of American religious believers.
They found specifically that Mormons have a very positive view of people in
other denominations and religions, more than any other church toward another
church, while members of most other religions view Mormons very negatively, just
a little better than they view Muslims. Essentially, most Americans
are so ignorant of Mormonism that many of them are willing to believe any
accusation, since they have nothing to compare it against and are totally
unwilling to invest any effort to find out what is true. Since Mormonism is a
blank slate in their minds, they project onto Mormons all sorts of negative
characteristics they find in other churches.
How can one be too Christlike? That's what Christ wants us to be!
traditional Christianity is all based on the 4th century Nicene creed... a
series of documents hatched some 400 years after Christ's death meant to
unify a divided Christian world. The doctrines from the creed are NOT scriptural
- not based on the New Testament but rather the ideas, perceptions and opinions
of 4th century theologians. When people today read and study the Book of Mormon
with an open heart and mind they are VERY surprised to find a series of books
that agreed completely with the New Testament and reinforce the absolute
divinity of Jesus Christ as the son of God and creator of this world as well as
the one person on whom which our complete salvation depends. Mormonism
isn't a rehash of the 4th century Nicene creed but instead is a fresh
writing of scripture which testifies of Jesus as the redeemer. Those who are
open and honest of heart enough to read it are convinced simply by their own
personal experience. So NO - Mormonism isn't traditional
Christianity because traditional Christianity is NOT based on the New Testament.
Don't take my word for it - find out for yourself.
@patjan"It seems that a person would have to be determined to not feel
it if he/she didn't. A secular mindset could cause this also." - I
agree."A person needs to read this book with real desire to know
if it is true." - I agree.So in essence we've learned that
when it comes to reading the BOM, you've already made up your mind whether
it's going to be true or not before starting. It's not the book that
does it .... it's the constant repetition that it's true (or not) that
convinces.Life rule of thumb: Just because you want something to be
true, doesn't mean it really is.@Ms MolliWow you
get it! Marry me? : )
@patriot"Those who are open and honest of heart enough to read
it are convinced simply by their own personal experience."You
always have to be open, want it to be true, praying for it, listening to others
testimonies, feel the burning in your bossom, etc for this to work. Why is
that? What do you have to be so 'open' about to find this book
RE: Just an Observer, Be ye therefore perfect(Mt 5:48), even as your Father
which is in heaven is perfect." Supposedly it is blasphemous to think that
we can become like God,. Christ’s use of the law, Perfect ion of love,
see vv 43-47. See Communicable and Incommunicable Attributes of God.RE: Jared,(Jesus)…born of Mary at *Jersusalem … who shall be
overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost*(Spirit) and bring
forth a son yea, even the Son of God. ( Alma 7:10).“The virgin
will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel,
”which means “God with us”(Mt 1:23 NIV). Fulfills the prophecy
of the virgin birth, Isaiah 7:14). "In *Bethlehem in Judea,"
they replied, "for this is what the prophet(Malachi) has
written:"'But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means
least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will be
the shepherd of my people Israel.'"( MT 2:6) Fulfilled
Prophecy is what separates the Holy Bible from all other books.
@patriot"traditional Christianity is all based on the 4th century
Nicene creed... a series of documents hatched some 400 years after Christ's
death meant to unify a divided Christian world. The doctrines from the creed are
NOT scriptural - not based on the New Testament but rather the ideas,
perceptions and opinions of 4th century theologians."Let's
try a little thought experiment... consider this paragraph...Mormonism is all based on the 19th century creeds of Joseph Smith... a series
of documents hatched 1800 years after Christ's death meant to restore a
divided Christian world. The doctrines from Smith's creeds are NOT
scriptural - not based on the New Testament but rather the ideas, perceptions
and opinions of the 19th century theologian.would that be an attack
on Mormonism? If so then are you really helping your cause by directly attacking
Catholicism and more implicitly other Christian denominations?"So NO - Mormonism isn't traditional Christianity because traditional
Christianity is NOT based on the New Testament."You know, I
consider the LDS church Christian, but saying my faith isn't based on the
New Testament... always makes me question, for a moment, why I defend your
faith's Christian status.
Ms Molli,My recollection of the Catholic Church is that they claim
primacy and believe the Pope to be the Vicar of Christ and the only person on
earth who can interpret Christian doctrine (and that he does so infallibly).
Though there has been a detente of late, Protestants were considered to be
heretics – excommunicants.As to Protestants - isn't that
the whole issue now about whether Mormons are Christians? It is an issue of
certain Protestant groups claiming that the LDS are not Christian and hence, not
saved.Reference tithing. Many Christian sects believe in the
practice. The real purpose of tithing is outlined in Malachi 3:7 where it is
shown to be in answer to the question of how we return our hearts to God. Also,
Christ reminded us that "where your treasure is, there will your heart be
Chistian enough, perhpas..."Christ-Like" enough, not by a
long shot."I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians.
Your Christians are so unlike your Christ." ~ Mahatma Gandhi "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." ~ Mahatma
"I've talked to hundreds of Mormons and I’ve learned something:
they don’t argue."Oh, yeah. You apparently haven't
talked to Senator Harry Reed.
Many if not most Christians would say Mormons are not "too" Christian
because they are not Christian at all. Here is the argument: "Jesus is God.
Not a separate god with similar but lesser powers, but the one and only God
Himself. Being God is what Jesus is ALL about, not some minor detail about which
we can disagree. Remove God from the identity of Jesus and you are talking about
somebody ENTIRELY different. The Mormon Jesus, then, is some other Jesus; he is
not "our" Jesus. If they don't worship the same Jesus that other
Christians do, how can they also be Christian?"If Jesus is God
(and I am not saying he is) then doesn't this argument make sense? For
those who do believe Jesus is God, they see an immense divide with no fellowship
of common belief, so how can they see Mormons as fellow Christians?
@coleman51:"His take of the Book of Mormon as "dull"
because it speaks too much of Christ entirely misses the point."If the book is dull it's because of the many, many wars portrayed. And
the cause is always the same... moving from religious to ir-religious....
happening over and over again."Rather than talk too much of
Christ, we define who He truly is."The reason it 'talks too
much of Christ' is because the author, Mormon, had that as his main theme
and purpose for putting the book together.Would that we had the
other record as well (large plates).@sharrona: "Mormon view:
Jesus is the firstborn spirit child of the Father."OK. Then
what of the second, third, fourth, etc., spirit-born of the father? Is Jesus
the only one of the spirit-born that could qualify as a God with the Father?
What of the seemingly billions of other spirit-born? One would have to wonder
about their lesser station and fate in the scheme of things.
Re: LValfre:"So in essence we've learned that when it comes to
reading the BOM, you've already made up your mind whether it's going
to be true or not before starting. It's not the book that does it ....
it's the constant repetition that it's true (or not) that
convinces."I'm going to have to disagree with you on that
one. I know of far too many people with nothing other than a partially open
mind who have come to the conclusion that the Book of Mormon was true--even
among many that initially had a negative view of Mormonism or were looking to
disprove it from the start, all throughout the church's history (and, in
case it isn't clear, I know of several people personally who have had this
experience). Does that mean it is true? No, it doesn't. But it does mean
that your assertion is incorrect.
HotGlobe,We see Jesus as a separate being from the Father but not
with lesser powers.I agree (mostly) with your depiction of how many
other Christians view Christ. But it is not the only view either. The point is
the dominant Christian voices are trying to silence alternate voices (the Nicene
Council persists).As to the Trinity. I would call it a relatively
difficult doctrine that Christ himself only vaguely referenced (and just once
that I can recall right now). In virtually all other discussions he was quite
clear about his being separate from the Father and subject to him.If
anyone could have provided a simple, clear explanation of the Trinity it would
have been Christ. But instead it fell to Christians three centuries removed
from him and at the behest of a pagan Emperor. That does not sound Biblical to
me.Have you ever read the Athanasian Creed which attempts to explain
Brother...first Mormons are a cult and not Christians at all. Now they are TOO
Christian. Just another proof that there will always be opposition, even if
that opposition says that believing in Christ "too much" is wrong as
Twin Lights,Have you read the Lectures on Faith, which were
canonized, official doctrine and contained in the Doctrine and Covenants for
over 85 years, and which try to explain the "Godhead"? Lectures on Faith
makes the ancient Christian Creeds seem wonderfully clear by comparison!
RE: atl134YOu make one mistake in your comparison of the Nicene
creed to Joseph Smith.When they created the Ncence creed they di NOT
aske God what is right, they just decide amonst them selves waht they wantto
belive.Joseph Smith, when he lacked wisdon asked God for the more
enlightment. Jospeh Smiths "creed" comes from God, not from a committee
of men.I am pretty sure that when Joseph Smith and was told not to
join any other religion becasue they are an abomination, that any religion that
teaches fales doctrine and not God's full and true doctrine is not square
It's like asking how many angels can dance on a pinhead. It's
subjective down to a person. Everyone claims truth, everyone argues from the
same script, and no one has any more proof than anyone else. That's how
religion so successfully divides us, and why it needs to be kept personal.
HotGlobe - SAN RAFAEL, CAHere is the argument: "Jesus is God.
Not a separate god with similar but lesser powers, but the one and only God
Himself. Being God is what Jesus is ALL about"That is NOT an
argument, that is an agreement. Mormonism is to be Christ-centered not Heavenly
Father centered, although they are the same in purpose, one God. I
am so glad we finally got that cleared up. No more argument.
HotGlobeI can see your point that the Son could not be equal to the
Father. Therefore the Mormon Christ is not God. However, I believe that we are
only saved through the Atonement of Christ. Therefore, I could also argue that
Christ is greater than the Father. Actually, it takes both to be
The one God of this earth.
patriot wrote:"traditional Christianity is all based on the 4th
century Nicene creed... a series of documents hatched some 400 years after
Christ's death meant to unify a divided Christian world."Not true. This is the biased, Talmagesque re-write of history you are
rehearsing. The truth is just the opposite. The Nicene Creed is "based
on" and is an expression of 400 years of Christianity, passed intimately
among Apostolic eye witnesses and their close students and followers.The theology of Mormonism was varied, self-contradictory, and unclear in its
early years. The Lectures on Faith were official doctrine (in the Doctrine and
Covenants) for over 85 years before the Correlation Committee removed it. In the
same way the Mormon Church appointed a "Correlation Committee" (BH
Roberts, Talmage, etc) and currently has a Correlation Department to
"correlate" the doctrines of the LDS Church, the Ecumenical Councils of
Christianity simply convened to articulate in the Creeds what Christians
believed.Faulting "Creedal Christianity" for that is
shooting your own Church and its history squarely in the foot. You are hoist
with your own petard with that argument.
An artilce about peoples blogs does not qualify as journalism. This is just
another sensation people to get people all stired up. The dnews is losing
credibilty as fast as it is losing readership. Nice job in baiting for
readership and comments but as you are aware it is becoming a losing battle.
To Ms. Molli and all others who are offended when the LDS say they are the only
true church: We say this not because we are pompous, arrogant, or think we are
better. In fact I know many nonMormons who live better lives than many Mormons.
Rather, God himself chose to restore His Church; he called a prophet (Joseph
Smith), and sent angels straight from heaven to this prophet. He explained to
his prophet how his church should be organized. He revealed many hidden truths
to J.S. and his successors, just as he had done with ancient prophets.
Therefore, it is God’s church in a very literal way, and not man’s
church. Its members are not better; they are just lucky and blessed to have
found this truth. This does not mean Joseph Smith or any of his successors are
perfect; God lets us make mistakes. The mistakes of church members and leaders
do not mean it isn’t God’s church. The miracle of it all is that God
can do such a great work in his Church by using fallible mortals.
A Scientist,Yes, I've read them (though it's been awhile).
I don't recall them being as contradictory as you indicate. By contrast,
I have never forgotten how confusing I found the Athanasian Creed.The issue with the Nicene Creed is not from Talmage. From the Wiki folks:"The First Council of Nicaea was a council of Christian bishops
convened in Nicaea . . . by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in AD 325. This
first ecumenical council was the first effort to attain consensus in the church
through an assembly representing all of Christendom. Its main accomplishments
were settlement of the Trinitarian issue of the nature of The Son and his
relationship to God the Father, the construction of the first part of the Creed
of Nicaea . . . "Also, look up Arianism. It is not strictly the
LDS view, but it shows that non-Trinitarian views were present anciently and
were at issue.As to the Nicene Creed being "an expression of 400
years of Christianity, passed intimately among Apostolic eye witnesses and their
close students . . ." Please. We are closer to the Founding Fathers than
the Council of Nicaea was to the apostles.
To Scientist and others. Sit down again and reread what you wrote about the
creeds. The fact is that it was Charlamagne that called a series of Bishops
together. This group of Bishops who were not apostles had already started
apostizing the word of the Apostles as evidenced by the writings of Paul, Peter
and John. Why? Because the Apostles were slowly being killed off. Reason,
because it was felt that by killing the leaders, this new religion would die.However, Charlamagne became intrigued with this new religion and then
wanted to join. However, he wanted it under his terms and only his terms. He
helped determine what was and isn't scripture. If it didn't fit his
feelings of God, it was basically abolished. The creeds were used to determine
what Charlamagne wanted. There is no office of Pope in the Bible. There is
Apostles, Prophets, Priests, evanglists, elders, seventies and etc. No other
church has this in its entireity thus the same organization of the Church
established by Jesus Christ is back on the earth.The Book of Mormon,
Another Testament of Jesus Christ testifies of the Divinity of Jesus Christ.
Nothing more, nothing less.
Scientist, If you've read to this point, you've seen a couple solid
arguments that counter yours already. However, I would like to add
that the passage you quoted was spoken by the resurrected Jesus Christ to Joseph
Smith in the year 1820 speaking specifically of the ministers working in upstate
New York at THAT particular time in history, several of whom had an impact on
young Joseph, bringing him to inquire of the Lord which of their churches he
should join. Every minister within Joseph's sphere was not teaching the
Bible, purely, but was teaching the bible THROUGH an interpretation of the
creeds (Nicene, Apostles' or Athanasian).In addition, this
particular passage of scripture has NEVER been applied to anyone else at any
time since. We revere it as direct revelation from the one who created this
world; the same one who loves all and desires all to come unto Him. How grateful I am to have this guidemap, spoken by my Savior, which has
brought me and my family to truth.
@ sharrona"God the Father does not have a body of flesh and
bones."Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and
seventy of the elders of Israel:And they saw the God of Israel: and there
was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were
the body of heaven in his clearness. Ex 24:9-10And I will take away
mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen. Ex 33:23Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with
God: Phil 2:5-6Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with
you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the
Father; and how sayest thou then Shew us the Father? John 14:9Behold
my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath
not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. Luke 24:39
Interesting points. Thanks you all for the insights. Together may we gain a
better understanding of our origins and our destiny.Here is some
more food for thought -since many comments focus on what we know of God. What if the name "God" we toss around were actually a title?
What if the title of "God" were an office in the priesthood much like
priest or high priest or Apostle? Then, like the description of the "dread
pirate Roberts", perhaps God is not a single entity but is a succession of
individuals (or collection) who have rooted imperfections out of their lives in
days long since past?We know the priesthood is eternal, as is God.
We also know we (mankind) were created in the very image of God, so we share His
attributes in embryo. We know we are called to be heirs of God, joint heirs with
Jesus Christ. "Come follow Me." What if the reason "God" is
often used in singular is because it represents total unity, like joining the
collective?What feels right to me is that God wants us to emulate
Him. Only then will we truly be Christian. Lets seek to be like Him.
Twin Lights,Let me help you get a start:In Lectures on
Faith God, the Father (Elohim according to Mormons) is described as "a
personage of spirit", distinguished from the Son (Jehovah) as "a
personage of tabernacle" and the Holy Ghost is "the shared mind between
the Father and the Son" (Doctrine and Covenants, 1835 Edition, page 53). In the dedicatory prayer for the Nauvoo temple, Joseph Smith prayed to
"O Lord God of Israel", by which he meant the Father: "...we ask
thee, Holy Father, in the name of Jesus Christ". So Joseph thought
Jesus' FATHER's name was "Jehovah", but then Joseph calls him
"Holy Father" and "O Jehovah" (D&C 109:34, 42, 56). In verse
68 Joseph seems confused between who is "Jehovah" and who is the
"Mighty God of Jacob".Even the best LDS scholars have agreed
Joseph's theology morphed over time, and that he was often confused about
the identities of the "Godhead", and that he even embraced Trinitarian
notions at times. That is why a "correlation committee" had to fix the
confusion and the only solution was to rip the Lectures on Faith out of the
LasvegasPam,There have been NO arguments to "counter" what I
have presented, much less "solid" ones.Twin Lights quotes
from "the Wiki folks" - now there is true scholarship and research! Not!
Moreover, nothing she quoted "counters" the facts and the
history of Christianity, which documents and testifies how God guided the
ecumenical Councils in their "Correlation" work - just as LDS claim
happened with your much smaller, much less erudite "Correlation
Committee". Nobody has countered that at all.Then you,
Lasvegaspam, insist that "the passage [I] quoted was spoken by the
resurrected Jesus Christ to Joseph Smith..."That is your biased
opinion. What we do know is that Joseph Smith CLAIMED that is what Jesus said.
There were no other witnesses. It is Joseph Smith's word, and his
documented history with the Law suggests his testimony cannot be trusted.Then Bill in Nebraska gives us more hokey pokey Talmage-ish twisted
history. Bah, humbug. That is nonsense. Check out real historians and real
sources, not your biased bunk.
The Scientist: Why wpuld a 14 yearold(who could barely read and write) write
something like that wasn't true. Joseph was persecuted for what he saw and
for what he said not for things he did. why would a young boy do that?
@the truth"When they created the Ncence creed they di NOT aske God
what is right, they just decide amonst them selves waht they wantto
belive."You want me to seriously believe that a group of
religious leaders didn't ever pray for knowledge?" Jospeh
Smiths "creed" comes from God, not from a committee of men."Allegedly."I am pretty sure that when Joseph Smith and
was told not to join any other religion becasue they are an abomination, that
any religion that teaches fales doctrine and not God's full and true
doctrine is not square with God."If he actually was told that.
RE: Zoar (Luke 24:39) Jesus has a body of flesh and bones, but God(the Father)
is spirit…”(John 4:24). JS agrees: Q. What is the Father? A. He is
a personage of glory and of power. (5:2.). Lectures on Faith.O.T.
Theophanies and Christophanies. Biblical hermenuetics, The use of the N.T to
interpret the OT.… the Angel who spoke to him on Mount Sinai, and
with our fathers; and he received living words to pass on to us.(Acts 7;38)
(Moses) left Egypt, not fearing the king's anger; he persevered because he
saw him who is invisible.(Hebrews 11:27)("No man hath seen
God(Elohim) at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the
Father, he hath declared Him." John 1:18 NIV)- No man hath seen God
at anytime, except[JS] he hath born record of his Son… .(John 1:19 JST)Philippians 2:5-6, see verse 8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself by becoming obedient to dead even death on a cross. Kenosis
doctrine,taught in the BoM.
snowman,I am shocked by your question. Apparently, you don't
know and have never met a 14 year old?More importantly, Joseph not
only had a reputation for being a great "storyteller" even at a very
young age, but he did not write any accounts of "The First Vision"
(so-called) until around Ten Years AFTER the event allegedly took place, and he
had already organized a Church for over two years (1832 are the earliest
versions of the "First Vision" account, and none of them were even
published until the 1840's).So there really is only
Joseph's word - a long time after the fact - that he saw anything at all,
much less that he was "persecuted" for it by anyone.If you
believe what teenagers say simply because you cannot fathom teenagers making
things up, then you have bigger problems to deal with than convincing me or
anyone else about your Church.The fact still remains: Jesus did NOT
say all Churches other than the Mormon Church are "wrong" and their
creeds "an abomination" and their preachers "all corrupt"
anymore than Jesus (as God, or Allah) told Fundamentalists to kill the
Infidels!Gullibility is bad.
The LDS Church professes to be the restored church of Jesus. I don’t share
that view, Joseph Smith’s claims to divine revelations notwithstanding.
Mormons have no more idea of than do Catholics and Protestants of the intent of
Jesus’ original message proclaiming the kingdom to be at hand.The teachings of Jesus must be closer to what Jesus envisioned than the
theologies of salvation developed by the early church fathers in the early
centuries of the Christian era. And what are those teachings? Treat other people
the way you want to be treated. Show kindness, love, tolerance, and forbearance.
Love your neighbor as yourself.Is Mormonism too Christian? Such a
I have known many 14 year old boys including some who were truly great
storytellers. Most weren't much at writing and they certainly didn't
make up stories that would get them into trouble. Of course
Joseph’s understanding of God, Christ, and the Holy Ghost increased over
time. The same is true for Peter and the other apostles. Each had a far
greater understanding of God, Christ, and the gospel at the end of their
ministries than at the beginning.When Joseph began he was very young
(he never lived to be old). His understanding was based in the prevailing
religious doctrines around him. New understanding came over a period of years
and via successive revelations. We see this with the apostles and Christ in the
NT. Were we to be afforded the opportunity to listen to Peter at the beginning
of his apostleship and again at the end, we would notice significant doctrinal
evolution.In the days of the apostles they were railed against for
being unlettered adults and traitors to Judaism. Today, we rail against Joseph
for being young and inexperienced and mounting a challenge to traditional (vs.
When I read the pseudo-intellectual drivel here offered by
'scientists' and those who worship 'reason and logic' I am
more and more convinced that Joseph was telling the truth, and that the BoM is
what it purports to be.Jonathan Swift was right ... ""When a
true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces
are all in confederacy against him." Critics share one common
trait in their comments - anger. That is more telling than anything they write.
I don't think it's so much that Mormons are obsessed with Jesus Christ
per se, as they are obsessed with gaining the approval of other Christians,
particularly conservative Christians. That's why you see so many attempts
to form alliances with other (conservative) Christian organizations.
That's why when you hear about all the negative PR that Prop 8 generated,
the response from members of the church is "But look at all the alliances we
formed with other (conservative) Christians!"The gospel has just
as much to offer to secularists, to Muslims, to Jews, to Scientologists, and
members of any other religion in the world. If we focus too much on making
ourselves look "Christian," we will have the unintended consequence of
alienating ourselves from anyone who doesn't identify as Christian.Plus, it does diminish our uniqueness. We have a lot that is unique to
our faith, and we should not be ashamed of that uniqueness. If we were just the
same as every other Christian church, what motivation would other Christians
have to accept the true gospel?
Moontan,The only one "angry" here seems to be you, just as
the only one avoiding substantive argument and instead casting aspersions and
name-calling seems to be you.I wonder why that is?And if
your "logic" and "reasoning" is to believe those things that
"scientists" argue AGAINST, then, again, you have bigger problems than
trying to evangelize your religion.Good luck with that.Now for those who actually want to discuss the substance of my arguments, I
look forward to your replies.
The article mentions that Tal Davis recommends not calling Mormonism a cult.
Twenty five years ago Tal Davis was making a living calling Mormonism a cult. I
see that he is still making a living attacking Mormonism, but has at least
discarded one of his weapons. Pehaps he will make a little more progress over
the next 25 years. Since mainstream Christianity deviated from original
Christianity over 1600 years ago,those Nicean Christians who are "ever
learning but never coming to a knowledge of the truth" are unable to
recognize orginal Christianity when they see it.
@The Scientist - you seem like a pretty smart guy, but being smart is only half
of the wisdom equation. I think KTC John is onto something with you and
sharrona when he quotes 2 Timothy 3:7.Maybe you could educate us all
with some knowledge that would really improve our online debating experience -
how do you bypass the 4-comment limit?
SharronaAll we have both managed to prove is that any belief can be
justified by the bible. I cannot sway you and you cannot sway me. It men did
not interpret the scriptures according to their own understanding then there
would not be so many Christian denominations in existence. If the Catholic
church’s claim to divine authority originating from the Apostle Peter is
correct than all the other Christian churches that sprang up later on resulted
from apostasy from the mother church. If on the other hand the Church was
corrupted after the apostles had all died then the Mormons claim of a
restoration is the only way that condition could have been remedied. Otherwise
why are we not all Catholics?
@The Scientist"In Lectures on Faith God, the Father (Elohim
according to Mormons) is described as "a personage of spirit",
distinguished from the Son (Jehovah) as "a personage of tabernacle" and
the Holy Ghost is "the shared mind between the Father and the Son"
(Doctrine and Covenants, 1835 Edition, page 53)."The Father has
a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's; the Son also; but the Holy
Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it
not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us. D&C 130:22 Date:April 2, 1843Place:Ramus, IllinoisApparently 8 years
later Joseph learned the true nature of the trinity and the Mormon Church to
this day still teaches it.
Ever go to a Fast and Testimony meeting?Who is revered more in those
testimony talks?Joseph Smith or Jesus Christ?I encourage
every one who does attend Fast and Testimony meeting to pay close on July 1 to
whom is revered more.The LDS church is too Joseph Smith and temple
oriented and not "too Christian."
Thinkman: Evidentky you miss points of fast and testimony meeting that others
already understand. Just as the Hebrews of old talked of Moses and reverred
him, so do the Latter-Day Saints of today. Still Christ is in the forefront of
everyones testimony. Testimonies grow stronger and more vibrant and closer to
the Master as one learns line upon line, precept upon precept. As such
testimonies continue to revolve as one learns and gains knowledge. The
Scientist mentioned this of Joseph Smith and we can see that from President
Monson as well.Without a testimony of the restoration which includes
the Book of Mormon, ones testimony is incomplete. I hear it quite often to what
you refer to but their testimonies are growing and that is all the Savior asks.
They continue to prosper in their testimonies and as such for you to say what
you said is misleading and WRONG.Learn to listen with a broken heart
and a contrite spirit, then the Holy Ghost will speak once more to you. Until
then continue in the spirit of defiance and hatred to the truth of the Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Thanks for the tip to Godbodied. All should read this it is rather deep but
most should understand it the link is http://byustudies.byu.edu
/PDFLibrary/50.3Webb Godbodied-a31ea084-327e-467b-bedc- 4fa6c6f7d0c4.pdf.
Remove spaces for link.Knowing modern science it is really amazing
that Joseph Smith understood this so well. Atoms are made of particles that are
made of something we are still trying to understand.But Joseph Smith
taught God controlled all Matter. Matter obeyed his will. Thus to move the
continents he needed only to command them to move and they did. To walk on
water he needed to only command the water to hold his weight and it did. Stop a
storm just a command.
The Scientist: I have and have met many 14 yearolds as there are several in my
family but how does this relate to Joseph Smith? His only book was the Bible.
He only went as high as the 3rd grade in school.His account of the 1st vision is
in every Book of Mormon that has ever been printed. He was persecuted for
evverything he said and did. He was tarred and feather more than once.
Recently, a minister of another denomination stopped at my door. He was looking
for people to attend his meetings. I invited him in. It was hot out. I
offered him a drink of ice-water. He drank gladly and took a seat. A friendly conversation ensued. I suggested there was much more that united
us than separated us doctrinally. That we gain more by focusing on those
similarities. He wanted to talk about the differences. So we did.
He pointed out many of the same things mentioned in Sharrona's comment. I
explained how his views and our views were mostly the same (and respectfully
corrected misconceptions - also promulgated in Sharrona's post).
Unfortunately, the DesNews 200-word limit does not allow me to do so here. As he left he said, "You are very unusual. I think you are almost a
Christian," and smiled. I laughed and said, "I think we are both
Christians. Little separates us. I hope we will 'see eye to eye' and
sing the same song together one day." (He caught the Isaiah reference and
grinned.) "So," I continued, "I'll take it as a
compliment."We built a little bridge. We both benefited.
@terra nova,"I think we are both Christians. Little separates us? OK, Do you
believe,…the love of ‘God’, because He laid down his life for
us…(1John 3:16).An early Baptismal creed,found in(Romans
10:9). “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is
Lord(Yahweh),” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the
dead, you will be saved. Lord (Greek Kyrios) is used over 6,000 time in
the LXX(Greek O.T.)to translate the name of Israel’s God((Yahweh). See,
Tetragrammaton. . … no one can say Jesus is Lord(Yahweh)except
by the Holy Spirit. (1 Cor 12:3) Paul ascribes deity to Jesus.… God
said unto Moses,” I am( Ego eimi ,*the BEING)… LXX Exodus 3:14.Jesus knew Jews would consider it blasphemy to answer this question by
declaring his own deity.… , Are you then the Son of God? And he said unto
them, You say that ”I am”(Ego eimi= *the Being.(Luke 22:70 Greek
N.T..The word "Trinity" first used by Tertullian
(c.155-230)well before the creeds.
I love the way members talk themselves into "believing" understand fully
that if they don't "believe" they'll be chastised and ignored.
The culture is very powerful in Mormonism and reading your responses of
"testimony" "it's true" etc. etc. are mind boggling.
Sharrona - Just to clarify - Mormons believe that Mary was a virgin
both before AND AFTER she conceived Jesus. Mormons do not teach that
"Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the same way that mortal men
are begotten by mortal fathers." Like all Christians, we believe that it
was a miracle!Take care!- Debra Jo