The tragic works-based religion of Mormonism

Ordinances are basic to the gospel. Now, what is the gospel of which we speak? It is the power of God unto salvation; it is the code of laws and commandments which help us to become perfect, and the ordinances which constitute the entrance requirements.

The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 502

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12 Responses to “The tragic works-based religion of Mormonism”

  1. Timothy Berman Says:

    My question is how is this deemed Tragic?

    Let me illuminate exactly how deceptive this simple post is:

    The Tragic works-based religion of the Apostle Peter:

    “Now when thy heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the Remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. … Then they that gladly received his word were baptized…” Acts of the Apostles 2:37-38, 41

    The Tragic works-based religion of the Son of God, Jesus Christ:

    “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…” The Gospel of Matthew, 24:19-20

    “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Gospel of Mark 16:15-16

    The Tragic works-based religion of Saul of Tarsus (The Great Apostle Paul):

    “And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost. And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized” Acts of the Apostles 9:17-18

    The Tragic works-based religion of the Apostle Peter:

    “Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him. … Then answered Peter, CAN ANY MAN FORBID WATER, THAT THESE SHOULD NOT BE BAPTIZED, WHICH RECEIVED THE HOLY GHOST AS WELL AS WE? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord…” Acts of the Apostles 10:34-35, 47-48 (see the full context of Acts 101-48).

    The Tragic Works-based religion of the Apostle Paul:

    “And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord” Acts of the Apostles, Paul recounting his conversion and his baptism, and calling of apostolic Authority: Acts 22:16.

    Thus, according to your assertion, all the references from Jesus Christ’s great commission, and the obedience and directions of the Apostle Peter, Ananias, and the Great Apostle Paul all believe in the same “Tragic works-based religion” that you proclaim is the same as that of the Mormon Faith:

    “We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: First, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; (See Acts 2:36) Second, Repentance (See Matthew 24:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; and, Acts 2:38); Third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins (see Matthew 24:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; and, Acts 2:38); Fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost (See Acts 2:38, 8:12-22).”

    How much more tragic is the Modern Christian thinking today that all one has to do is “pray and receive Jesus into your hearts” and that is how one ought to enter the gates of salvation.

  2. soulangler Says:

    Tim, thanks for the comment – let me explain why it is tragic. The gospel is not law. The gospel is not ‘the code of laws and commandments which help us to become perfect’ because we don’t make ourselves perfect by anything we can do. The Holy Spirit says: “All our righteousness (not all our bad actions, our ‘righteous’ deeds) is as filthy rags” Isaiah 64.6

    I shan’t go through each scripture passage you mention but God says, through Paul: “we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.” Galatians 2.16

    The tragedy is that Spencer W. Kimball did not understand this basic fact about the gospel. And that means that people, made in God’s image, are misled and face eternal destruction because they are still ‘under the curse of the law’ (Galatians 3.10)

    I am not of the ‘easy believism’ crowd (I know there are those who think they’ve had their ‘ticket stamped’ and will now live like the devil – they are deceived too. That is what Romans chapter 6 addresses – please read it.

    Tim, please consider this – I’m not slamming people or their viewpoint for fun – I sincerely believe that God’s Word teaches that a ‘gospel’ that adds works is a road that leads to eternal hell. I don’t want you or anyone to got there.

    If Spencer W. Kimball meant by ‘code of laws and commandments’ merely repentance and faith in Jesus then that would be Biblical – but this would be contrary to the Book of Mormon which contradicts Galatians 2.16 where it says, “We know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” II Nephi 25:23

    Have you done ALL you can do Tim?
    But Jesus said on the cross – it is finished – he did all he had to do because we couldn’t and wouldn’t.
    Grace that is dependent on me doing all I can do is not grace at all. Grace isn’t God helping those that do their best – Grace is God giving us what we don’t deserve as rebels against his rightful rule.

  3. Timothy Berman Says:

    “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…” The Gospel of Matthew, 24:19-20

    What did Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God mean by “observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you?”

    • soulangler Says:

      Disciples of Christ are to be taught to ‘observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you’. A ‘disciple’ is a mathetes (one who learns, is taught). So I must hear, learn and obey Christ. The Christian life is one of obedience to Christ. Jesus says, ‘Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. Mt.7.24.

      But have you not read what Jesus also said?: ‘This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.’ John 6.29. and straight after “Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” John 6.35 ‘and this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.’ John 6.40

      The Bible teaches that justification (the legal declaration of God that reckons the sinner righteous in God’s sight by the imputation of Christ’s righteousness) is a free gift of God’s grace (Eph.2.8; Romans 3.28; Galatians 2.16 etc.) and has nothing to do with our righteousness which is ‘filthy rags’ (Isaiah 64.6). However, God’s work in salvation is to conform the sinner to the image of His Son Jesus. That’s why easy believism is wrong (as you are right to point out).

      But the person who wants to add their works to Christ’s work on the cross, is under the curse of the law. “For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law, and do them.” Galatians 3.10

      What this means for you, Tim is this: Have you loved the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength? If not perfectly, you are under the curse of the law (which is eternal damnation in hell, which I too deserve). You may have done quite well, but admit you are not perfect. God says this to you (James 2.10): “For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.”

      Please Tim, consider why I am bothering to write to you at length – please consider this: I have no desire to win an argument – I’ll be a fool for Christ my Lord – but please consider these Scriptures from Almighty God. Then consider your failure (like al of us, Romans 3.23) to keep the law. Then consider your works as rubbish, dung (as the righteous Pharisee, Paul did, Phil. 3.6, 8). Then consider Jesus taking the curse of the law upon himself in the place of wicked rebels such as us. He, not your acts of ‘righteousness’ are the only hope for you and me.

      I’m praying for you Tim.

  4. Timothy Berman Says:

    I have honestly considered the Scriptures.

    Here is the Reality. Yes, we are saved by the Grace of God.

    To fully understand the Atonement (which if you actually study the scriptures of Christ’s mission to redeem mankind, Salvation did not begin and end at the Cross), one has to fully understand the purpose and reason why there had to be a savior in the first place.

    Why did we need a redeemer? Simple answer from a Christian perspective is because man had fallen into Sin and Death.

    When Adam fell, not only did he bring all humanity under mortal existence, but he also brought about sinfulness. Calvinist’s teach that because of Adam’s transgression, all mankind are destined to die in their sins and unless moved by the power of God and by God’s divine providence and sovereign will are saved by their understanding of grace, then mankind can’t truly be saved. I used to accept this position and find that it is not in line with what the true purpose behind the atonement was for.

    Modern Christian believers today adopt parts of the Calvinistic/Reformed idealisms and teachings, interpretations of scripture without fully understanding the full scope of the situation.

    Here, we have Adam and Eve. Both disobeyed God, brought about mortality. Within this mortal existence, they will suffer a variety of disappointments, suffer pain, suffer loss, experience temptations, suffer all kinds of diseases. Even death being the end of their mortal existence.

    It was not just sin that came into the world, but it was both Sin and Death. The two things man can’t save himself from no matter what. This is where the true meaning and definition of Grace comes into play. By grace are we saved. We could not fulfill the requirements of the Law to the totality of its strict moral application.

    The Atonement of Christ began when he was brought into this mortal existence. He was baptized. Ask yourself, why did the Son of God, being perfect, righteous and without sin have to be baptized by John the Baptist, and why did he say that it must needs be accomplished to fulfill all righteousness?

    If you look at Paul’s treatment on the nature of Baptism in Romans 6, you will find that he reflects on how a true Christian enters into the waters of baptism as a testimony to what God has already done in their heart. Convicting them of sin (Calvinists refer to this as the process of Regeneration) and is the circumcision of the heart. In the Ancient Hebrew tradition, God commanded that every male child had to be circumcised to separate the Children of Israel from other nations and by this act, they covenanted to obey God, and to be His Chosen people. As a person is baptized, they are baptized into the death of Christ himself. They are buried a sinful being, and once buried, they are buried in symbolism to Christ’s burial. They are in a sense truly identifying themselves to Christ’s death, burial, and Resurrected. This latter part is rising in Christ with newness of life, newness of hope, and in righteousness, taking upon themselves the name of Jesus Christ and make a covenant with our Lord and Savior.

    I am not here to argue with you either, I am here to point to you the reality and truth behind the purpose and nature of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and what it truly means to me as a Latter-day Saint Christian Believer.

    Yes, outside of Christ, we can’t live the strict moral laws that are required to become perfect. We could not die for our own sins and then raise ourselves up.

    However, Christ did. This is where Grace comes upon us. We did not deserve it, but it was granted unto us.

    However, we are held accountable to how we live our life after we have moved past the gate of Salvation which is Jesus Christ. He helps us through the gate, and with the Holy Spirit as our Guide, and our desire to live our lives in a covenant relationship with our Heavenly Father, we are blessed and grow from faith to faith.

    Paul says, do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. How do we transform ourselves and upon what are we renewing our mind?

    It takes work and commitment to develop a strong relationship.

    Just because you are married does not mean you stop communicating with your wife.

    Here are a list of works that you as a Christian do because it is counciled in scripture that we are to do these things.

    Study the Scriptures = here are the teachings, applications, and insights into how we ought to better ourselves. It is the road map to how we can become more and more Christ Like. Psalm 1 for example is a great passage on this.

    Pray always – Christ said that we ought to seek after God. Proverbs says that we are not to lean unto our own understanding but in all thy ways acknowledge the Lord.

    Help those in need – we are to exemplify the nature and compassion of Jesus Christ. We are to mourn with those who mourn, we are to feed those who are hungry, clothe the naked, visit the sick, preach the gospel, help our fellow man. We are to serve others as Christ himself had served others.

    Our lives showed always reflect the truth of our testimony. By their fruits you shall know them is what Paul says. Why? Because every good tree brings forth good fruits, and every bad tree brings forth bad fruits. When one begins to live the Gospel of Christ, being obedient to what Christ commands (because that is what he did say to his disciples, unless you are willing to go on record and pit Paul against Christ and say that Paul has more authority over Christ – which most modern Christians tend to do and not realize) us to do, then we are saved after all that we are able to do in our own power.

    Paul says that we are to put away foolish and childish things.

    Ever read Footprints? If it has been a very long time, sit down and really read the words. Christ walks beside us always. Yet, in the most trying of times, in the most difficult circumstances we face, where we feel that our strength is gone, there is no hope, there is no light, and we have lost our sense of purpose, it is Christ who carries us through those times. We are saved after all that we are able to do physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

    This does not mean (As modern Christians like you keep insisting upon) that Mormons believe in a legalistic doctrine. On the contrary, we believe that Christ has redeemed us from the effects of the fall and that we work with Christ in growing from faith to faith, from grace to grace. We overcome the weaknesses of the flesh.

    Yes, we tend to give in to temptations, commit sins, because we are not perfect, and our Heavenly Father knows this, but like any parent who helps a child grow and develop, our Heavenly Father chastises us, Forgives us, Helps us when we call upon him and shows mercy and love toward us.

    This is the true message of the Gospel.

    And, it is always saddening that you can’t see this truth. It is saddening that you look at it from a disdain of “Well there are rules and those rules you can’t use to save yourself”

    But here is the thing: Christ said it, we either obey him or we turn and walk away. And when I say we turn and walk away, we do this through our actions, through our thoughts, through our murmurings and grumblings.

    I honestly and truly testify to you in the name of Jesus Christ that the power of Salvation is not looking to the Cross, but looking beyond the cross. Looking at the hope that lies past mortality, and look to our Heavenly Father, knowing that it is through our obedience and our covenants we make with him, by the power and authority of Christ that we are saved as we keep our eyes affixed on those blessings that are awaiting us.

    The Salvation of our souls does not begin and end at the Cross. The Atonement, the power therein, begins with the fact that we are to become like Christ. We are to walk as he has directed us to walk, and to take upon ourselves his name, and his heart, and his way of living. We are to overcome our weaknesses, and we are to grow in truth and light.

    To say that this is wrong, is ultimately saying to Christ that he is wrong. And, that my friend is the most dangerous position one should never place themselves in if they call themselves a true follower of Jesus Christ.

  5. dale mcalpine (UK) Says:

    If my brother in Christ Jim permits me I would like to contribute to this discussion.Although I should add that he is more than capable to eloquently communicate the truth in love and with much wisdom and I thank him for his example.

    Timothy your last post said among other things this : ” I have honestly considered the Scriptures. ”

    If that were true then I would expect that you could not have failed to notice the warnings given by the Holy Spirit through Paul when He wrote :

    2Co 11:3-4 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
    For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

    and :

    Gal 1:6-9 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

    The reason we (Christians) might make statements that the Mormon religion is “tragic” would be because we know that salvation is by grace alone not of works so that no-one can boast, when Jesus (God in the flesh) hung on that cross He cried out “It is finished” or if you want the greek translation ” teleō ” To acomplish, paid in full.

    No amount of good works will pay for our sins and crimes against an infinitley Holy Righteous Almighty God, so when the Mormon religion says that Jesus makes up for what we cannot do that is an insult against Him and “another Gospel” He did it all and there is absolutely nothing we can add to His wonderful sacrifice. This was widely known and accepted untill Joseph Smith and other false prophets arrived on the scene in the 19 Century.

    So, like every other man made religion the Mormon faith teaches works based salvation, just like the Jehovahs Witnesses and Roman Catholics and even the Muslims you are taught that there is something you can do to aid in your quest for eternal life, however, that is not Biblical Christianity Timothy and since there is only one way you and I can be saved, and that way is only through an intimate personal relationship with the Jesus revealed in the scriptures, if you do not know Him you are not saved and will spend eternity seperated from Him in the lake of fire.

    So to conclude and for your instruction Tim, Jesus is God, John 1:1, not satans spirit brother. And Jesus warns us in Joh 8:24 “I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins. ”

    If you have a wrong understanding who Jesus is Tim, and if you hope to gain His forgiveness by your good works that He considers “filthy rags” you will die in your sins and that is a tragedy for anyone so please come to the light and have your sins forgiven and God will cast them as far as the East is from the West.

    Praying for you also.

    – dale

  6. Timothy Berman Says:

    Dale Says:

    “Timothy your last post said among other things this : ” I have honestly considered the Scriptures. ”

    If that were true then I would expect that you could not have failed to notice the warnings given by the Holy Spirit through Paul when He wrote :

    2Co 11:3-4 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
    For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

    and :

    Gal 1:6-9 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.:

    Timothy says:

    Allow me to provide you some information on this particular argument. First and foremost, you are attempting to take two specific passages of scripture out of their intended context. 2 Corinthians were written to those in Corinth. Galatians was written to the Churches in Galatia. While both passages deal with the same idea, the context is different. In fact, if you read in verse 13, the Apostle Paul is talking about current False Apostles that were presenting different doctrines that were contrary to what was already established by Jesus Christ and the Apostles. Ask yourself, what kinds of doctrines were being subverted? What were these false teachings that Peter, Paul and other Apostles battled against on a constant basis?

    Galatians, Paul actually defends his Apostolic Authority that was brought into questioning.

    Another question, Paul refers to the gospel as being the “Simplicity of Christ” what is that? What did Paul mean?

    Furthermore, if you are going to truly stand by your convictions and say that I have not fully considered the scriptures, then how is it that you are ultimately and logically showing forth Paul having more authority of Jesus Christ. I say this because it was Christ himself who said “Go into all the world and preach the gospel, baptizing them…” Christ commanded his disciples to Baptize. Peter Baptized, Paul Baptized and even clarified the purpose and symbolism behind the purpose of the Baptism ordinance.

    What you are also negating is the accountability. Scripture does say that we will be judged according to how we live our lives. Shall you deny Christ’s parable of the Sheep and the Goats? Does Christ not say in that specific parable that there will be many who come to him in that day and call upon his name but do not do the things he has asked of them to do? Do you not recall Christ himself saying that we must take up our cross and follow him? Do you not recall that Paul, the Apostle whom you are quoting also says that we are to not conform to the world, but be transformed by the renewing of our mind? how do we do that?

    So, again the question is put forth, deal with the Commandment of Christ himself, the acts of the Apostles in which they taught and performed the specific ordinances as a means for an individual to enter the gates of salvation as already established in my initial post, and then we will discuss this on a more scriptural basis.

    To date, I have yet to have an honest modern Day Evangelical take up the challenge to prove that Christ never commanded us to live our lives in obedience to him. You will not find it in scripture no matter how much you think you can reinvent Paul’s words.

    And, as stated before hand, our works outside of the Atonement of Jesus Christ mean nothing. We can’t do anything. We can’t die unto ourselves to redeem us from our fallen state. We can’t raise ourselves from the grave. Christ, again, had come to suffer, conquer both sin and death and provide the way in which we ought to live our lives. To say that this is a “false” and “other Gospel” is to directly declare to Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God that he too is a false Christ because it was HE HIMSELF WHO COMMANDED THESE THINGS TO BE DONE.
    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/01/22/galatians-16-9-pauls-other-gospel-and-mormonism/

  7. dale mcalpine (UK) Says:

    Timothy please explain what it is to “know Jesus”

    John 17:3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

    Since it would appear that Jesus is saying that to have eternal life is to know Him, do you agree that one of us does not know Him ? Mormons teach that Jesus is satans spirit brother and Christians teach that He is God the creator in the flesh, one of us has it wrong and does not have eternal life according to Jesus.

    I look forward to your response

    – dale

  8. Timothy Berman Says:

    Dale,

    Yes, I agree with that passage of John 17:3. And yes, we have to come to know the “only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.”

    And, I agree that Christ is the way, the truth, and the life by which men are saved.

    So, the question I am interpreting that you really want to answer and discuss is this: “Whom do men say that I am” and then the more specific Question: “Whom do ye say that I am”? Of course, I am referring to that conversation Christ is having with his disciples.

    What did Peter confess? “That thou art Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God”

    What was Christ’s response to this? His response was the acknowledgement that Peter did not go to any university to study doctrine, or earn a degree in divinity. In fact, Christ says, “Blessed art though Simon of Barjona for FLESH AND BLOOD HATH NOT REVEALED IT UNTO THEE…” His confession as to the reality of Jesus Christ was not based upon human knowledge or understanding. Furthermore, as we look at the context of this passage, we find that Christ finishes with this: “but my father which is in heaven” Christ then goes on to say “thou art Peter, and upon this rock, I will build my church.”

    The question is this: upon which rock was Christ to build his church? Many people interpret this to be that Christ was referring to Peter as the foundation that his Church were to be built upon. Yet, this is contextually unfounded. It was not Peter that Christ was going to build his church, but the confession of Peter. And, not even his confession, but the very nature as to how Peter came to confess Christ as the Son of the Living God – Divine Revelation. The very foundation of Christ’s Church would be built upon divine revelation as to who he is – Son of the Living God, and it is this that the Gates of Hell would not be able to prevail against.

    So, yes, one of us has a correct understanding as to whom Christ is, while the other does not. And here is proof positive that many do not understand the relationship between Christ and the Father. Notice that the context of the passage you use is John 17:3 where Christ says, “and this is life eternal, that they may know You”.

    Consider this for a moment. Christ is praying to the Father. Christ is both Son of God, and Son of Man. Christ is on this earth in a mortal body of flesh and blood. He is distinctly separate from the Father. He is praying to his Father. In this prayer, he says specifically that they not only come to know the Father, but they come to know Christ whom the Father has sent. How do you explain this within the context of the Trinitarian doctrine? You can’t. Why? Because to do so would mean you have to change the meaning of the scriptures themselves where it specifically identifies the very distinction between Jesus Christ and the Father.

    Going back to Matthew 16 and Peter’s confession, we also see that Christ says to Peter that it was the Father who revealed to Peter whom Christ is. Christ did not say it was himself that revealed it to Peter, but “My Father which is in Heaven hath revealed it”.

    How then does this correlate with the understanding that Christians believe that Christ is the creator? This doctrine is true. Latter-day Saints accept and believe that it was by the direction of the Father that Christ created all things, heaven and earth. In fact, if you go back to Deuteronomy 6:4 (a passage that Christians use to support the Trinitarian doctrine of One God), Latter-day Saints truly believe what is recorded here: Hear O Israel, the Lord God is one. In the proper context and understanding of Ancient Hebrew, the passage is transliterated to say this: Hear O Israel, the Yahweh/Yehovah Elohim is One.

    As you stated, and to which I agree with, Jesus Christ is Yahweh/Yehovah of the Old Testament. This is very problematic because here we have the correct understanding that Christ created all things, and that he not only is the Son of God, and the Son of Man, but that he also was Israel’s God – the One True God who declared “Thou Shalt not have no other Gods before me”.

    This brings us back to the question, If Jesus Christ is God manifested in the flesh, and is the creator of all things, why then does he tell Peter that it was not by the matter of flesh and blood that he confesses Christ, but that it was by divine Revelation by Christ’s Father who is in heaven that revealed to Peter that Christ is the Son of the Living God?

    Therefore, this comes to the question as to the relationship between Jesus Christ and Satan, and the misundestanding that just because Christ and Satan are brothers is a representation of a false religious and doctrinal concept is very misleading. Mormons don’t believe that Jesus Christ and Satan are brothers, we teach and believe that because we existed prior to this mortal existence that we all are brothers and sisters, and therefore Christ and Satan are our brothers.

    How so?

    Job 1, And when the Son’s of God came and presented themselves, Satan came also among them.

    Notice something very pecular here in this passage: The original Hebrew is this: Now there was a day when the sons of Elohim came to present themsevles before Yahweh, and Satan came also among them. And the Yahweh said unto Satan, Whence comest thou?

    The peculiarity of this passage is very signifant because if you go back to Deuteronomy 32:8-9, we read this in the current translation that is based upon the Masoretic Text: “When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel. For the Lord’s portion is his people: Jacob is the lot of his inheritance” we find that this passage originally was rendered as follows:

    “When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the Sons of God. For Yahweh’s portion is his people: Jacob is the lot of his inheritance”. This passage was actually changed by the Masoretic’s who held to a predominantly monothestic belief. But because of recent scholarship and manuscript comparison to ancient Judaic renditions, and the comparison to the table of nations as recorded in Genesis 10 and 11:

    In fact, this is very well known due to the discovery of the Ugaritic Text and the parallelistic beliefs shared between the people of Canaan and that of Ancient Israelites who came to occupy the land of Canaan. One article is entitled Dueteronomy 32:8 and the Sons of God by Michael S. Heiser describes the nature of this debate: http://www.thedivinecouncil.com/DT32BibSac.pdf, as well as a book entitled The Triumph of Elohiem, from Yahwehisms to Judiasims.

    Furthermore, going back to the separateness and distinctiveness of Christ and the Father, there is evidence in First Century Christianity of this very belief that is now denied by the modern Trinitarian doctrine:

    “7 As I have indicated, it is not an earthly discovery that was committed to them; it is not a mortal thought that they think of as worth guarding with such care, nor have they been entrusted with the stewardship of merely human mysteries.  2On the contrary, it was really the Ruler of all, the Creator of all, the invisible God himself, who from heaven established the truth and the holy, incomprehensible word among men, and fixed it firmly in their hearts. Nor, as one might suppose, did he do this by sending to men some subordinate—an angel, or principality, or one of those who administer earthly affairs, or perhaps one of those to whom the government of things in heaven is entrusted. Rather, he sent the Designer and Maker of the universe himself, by whom he created the heavens and confined the sea within its own bounds—him whose hidden purposes all the elements of the world faithfully carry out, him from whom the sun has received the measure of the daily 219rounds that it must keep, him whom the moon obeys when he commands her to shine by night, and whom the stars obey as they follow the course of the moon. He sent him by whom all things have been set in order and distinguished and placed in subjection—the heavens and the things that are in the heavens, the earth and the things in the earth, the sea and the things in the sea, fire, air, the unfathomed pit, the things in the heights and in the depths and in the realm between; God sent him to men.

    3Now, did he send him, as a human mind might assume, to rule by tyranny, fear, and terror?  4Far from it! He sent him out of kindness and gentleness, like a king sending his son who is himself a king. He sent him as God; he sent him as man to men. He willed to save man by persuasion, not by compulsion, for compulsion is not God’s way of working.  5In sending him, God called men, but did not pursue them; he sent him in love, not in judgment.  6Yet he will indeed send him someday as our Judge, and who shall stand when he appears”

    This is in a document entitled “The So-called Letter to Diognetus” dated to approximately 123-129 AD. Notice the context of the nature and purpose that the writer of this letter shares as to the sending of the Son into the world. The language where there is an obvious distinction made between the Father and the Son that is found in no other doctrine but the Latter-day Saint Christian faith where the idea that The Father is separate and distinct from the Son in both physical, emotional, and personality wise.

    And, going back to the nature of how and why Christ and Satan are brothers? We fully do not know, nor comprehend at this point. However, we do know that the Epistle of Jude records that which is fully developed in the Coptic Version of Enoch where 1/3 of the heavenly host was cast out along with their leader. Christians teach this to some degree but the Latter-day Saints teach that Satan wanted to come down and be the savior and usurp the Father’s divine plan for his children, and wanted the glory to himself. Here, you will disagree to the more extant of this doctrine but have to agree that there was a great war in Heaven where 1/3 of the heavenly host was cast out of the presence of God.

    Now, if we establish Biblically that there is a separate and distinctiveness between Christ and the Father (as explained earlier) and that Sons of God in Deuteronomy 32:8-9, and Job 1 as to actual “sons of God” Satan being among them, then we know that there is sound evidence in Ancient Israelite Religious belief and Biblical interpretation that this is very well supported in the minutest detail.

    Therefore, yes, when it comes right down to it, I wholeheartedly agree with you that We both have a different doctrine as to whom Jesus Christ is.

    Me, I believe that he is the Son of the Living God as Peter confesses, who came to earth to conquer Sin and Death, was crucified, buried, and resurrected on the third day with a physical body of flesh and bone, that he stayed with the disciples for forty days before his ascension into heaven with a physical body of flesh and bone, and that Christ is separate and distinct from the Father, and not one Being who possess the same essence and nature but distinct in personality and premise as that of the gnostic philosophical doctrine of the Trinity.

    • soulangler Says:

      Tim, you seem to have got some bad info. about the trinity. Trinitarians believe that the Father is distinct from the Son. If you’ve been told otherwise, you didn’t get it from someone who can articulate a Trinitarian faith (not surprising given the doctrinal indifference around).

      I can also affirm as a Bible-believing Trinitarian your statement, ‘The Father is separate and distinct from the Son’ (and probably the rest of your intention in that statement because it didn’t make sense grammatically, but I think I caught your meaning). this probably means you are arguing against a straw man.

      E.g. If i were to argue against the practice of polygamy you would (rightly) say that LDS no longer believe and practice that (at least the mainstream LDS). In such a case, I would be arguing against a straw man and you would be (understandably) irritated (pehaps). I didn’t read anything in that letter to diognetus I would object to as a person who has the Bible as my final and sufficient authority for faith and practice – as a historic, Trinitarian whose faith goes back to Jesus, through the apostles, Augustine and nearly all of the Fathers, the true church of the Middle Ages within Rome etc. such as the Waldensians, Bradwardine, Hus, Wycliffe, the Reformers, The Puritans, the early Methodists, Evangelicals etc.

      If I can’t trace that line back to Christ through the church, I don’t see how I can claim to part of the church Jesus Christ said he would build and the gates of hell would not prevail against. It seems the gates of hell did prevail for 1800 years in your system until the ‘restoration’ in…America (!)

      Can I sak by way of clarification, when you said, ‘If Jesus Christ is God manifested in the flesh, and is the creator of all things, why then…’ are you denying that the Son of God became flesh as Jesus? perhaps I misunderstood you – and I don’t want to misunderstand you or misrepresent your position at all.

      You say that we are all Jesus’ and Satan’s brothers – which is an admission that Jesus is the brother of Satan – which was Dale’s point. Because I have a sister and a brother does not mean my brother is any less my brother.

      The problem is this: the Bible says that Jesus is the eternal creator God become flesh (Colossians 2.9 “For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily”; John 1.1-14; hebrews 1; John 8:24, 58; 14.9 etc. etc.) and Lucifer is a created angel. The Bible nowhere says Jesus is a created being or angel.

      The Bible gives no hint that man was a spirit being prior to physical existance – this sounds like gnosticism to me.

      Gnosticism: Where to begin? The Bible denies gnosticism by affirming the original goodness of the creation (though now corrupted through the wicked rebellion of Adam the Head of all man outside Christ) and the physical resurrection of Jesus (he ate fish etc.). It denies that the the harsh treatment of the body is of any value in our standing before God (e.g. abstaining from certian foods or drinks).

      Perhaps you be so kind as to answer a qusetion that has puzzled me: How, assuming Jehovah and Elohim are separate, do you interpret Genesis 2.4?
      …’in the day that the Jehovah/Yahweh Elohim made the earth and the heavens’
      (NB no ‘and’ is between Jehovah and Elohim.)

      Tim, don’t defeat straw men. The Bible clearly teaches that the Father is not the Son. But the Bible also clearly teaches that the Father and the Son share the one essence. This teaching is revealed by the Father and the Son through his prophets and apostles who committed these things to the sacred Scriptures – the 66 books of the Old and New testaments – the sole and sufficient rule for the Church that has stood for 2000 years.

  9. Timothy Berman Says:

    Soulangler, definitely good discussion going on now… I do appreciate the candor and ability to openly share one another’s position. Currently starting a new week for my studies here and have alot on my plate. It will take me some time to respond to this properly so that there is no confusion and provide a better way to articulate this. I do have a couple articles on my blog that you may be interested in reviewing as they pertain to this particular discussion. If you want to post your comments on those blogs, I would not mind at all.

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/07/23/separate-and-distinctiveness-of-the-godhead/

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/01/22/galatians-16-9-pauls-other-gospel-and-mormonism/

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/06/14/gospel-principle-faith-in-jesus-christ/

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/05/25/disciples-of-christ-coming-unto-christ-with-renewed-hope/

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/03/01/jesus-is-god-how-is-this-possible/

    http://reasoningwiththecritics.wordpress.com/2009/01/13/christ-the-lord-dc-191/

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