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This website has been developed to help you understand the Word of God, the Holy Bible. We believe that the Word of God holds the keys to a peaceful, fruitful, joyful life. Jesus said that the "truth shall make you free." As you walk with Jesus and learn what the Word of God teaches you will find a new found freedom in your life.
Some of the teachings on this website may be unlike any you have ever heard. Let me encourage you to keep an open mind and also to search out what is being taught here to see if it lines up with the Bible or not. If you have problems with any of the lessons and don't agree. Send me scriptures and we can discuss your differences. Many of the lessons contained in this website will step on the toes of traditional Christianity. Jesus said that the "tradition of man makes the commandment of God of no effect." It is time to get rid of tradition and believe what the Word of God really says!
The Bible Gateway
Online Parallel Bible
Blue Letter Bible
Kenyon's Gospel Publishing Society
The Dake Annotated Bible and Other Study Material
Information About Cults
Utah Lighthouse Ministry
Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you. 1 Timothy 4:16
What is it? What Do They Teach?
Questions and Answers - Page One
by Jay S. McMullan
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Spiritual things have interested me for as long as I can remember. I became a Christian at the age of twelve and began to seek God and His truth much more deeply at the age of eighteen. From then until 1993, over fourteen years later, I had spent many hours of my life studying the Bible, two years in a Bible college in northeastern Oklahoma and had pastored two churches full time. In 1993, I was out of the ministry and working for Amoco Oil Company on the Gulf Coast of Texas. One of the company's refineries in Salt Lake City was building a new sulfur recovery unit and needed some experienced hands to help start it up. I put in for a transfer, knowing nothing about Salt Lake City or Utah other than the state had mountains and it also had Mormons.
I don't know how many times I was asked how many wives I was going to marry when I moved to Utah. Even though the Mormon Church, officially known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, stopped the practice of polygamy many years ago, there are many people in the United States that think it is still a main doctrine of the LDS church1. There are several splinter groups that claim to be the true Mormon church that do still practice polygamy in Utah and Arizona but the official LDS church excommunicates those that continue to follow what Joseph Smith called, "The Principle"2.
Since I was moving to Utah and I knew that the majority of people in Utah were members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, I began to devote myself to the study of their faith. One of my co-workers with Amoco was member of the church and had been "sealed" in the Jordan River Temple in South Jordan, Utah. If you are anything like me, you have no idea what it means to be "sealed" or exactly what a temple is. Those are some of the questions I will be answering on this web site. I will explain exactly what the LDS church believes and how that compares with fundamental Christianity. Unfortunately, I have found it very difficult to find members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints that will sit down with me and take the gloves off, so to speak, to discuss the differences in what their church teaches and what I have learned through my many years of Bible study.
"Truth will always withstand scrutiny!" If the LDS Church's doctrine is true, then it should have no problem with any debate. If it is not true, then debate will be avoided at all costs. One of the most used words by members of the LDS church is the word, "bash" or any form thereof. There seems to be a great fear among the members of the LDS church of being bashed by non-members. Granted, I have seen non-mormons bash some LDS members unmercifully. Please realize that it is not my purpose on this web site to bash anyone or their faith. My sole purpose is to get to the bottom of some of the questions I had concerning the LDS faith. If I had those questions, I feel that it is safe to assume that many more people, non-Mormons and Mormons alike, may share in those same queries. As in many Christian denominations, there are many members and probably the majority of each, that do not have a firm foundation built in their lives from the Bible or their faith. I firmly believe that a person should know why they are, what they say they are. If a person is a Catholic, he should know why he is a Catholic. If he is a Baptist, he should know why he is a Baptist and so on.
In this study, I will do my best to give scripture references or links to other web sites in which a deeper study can be engaged. I have tried to find members of the LDS church who would help me find the answers to many of these questions and have not, as yet. been able to find even one who knows the answers to many of the questions that follow. Often, I am referred to the Mormon Missionaries and have had many of them come to my house and even have had many of them join us in weekly Bible study in my home. Mormon Missionaries are young men who, usually at the age of eighteen, receive a crash course on the basic teachings of the LDS church at their Missionary Training Center (MTC) and are then assigned to a two year mission at some location around the globe. The missionary will spend his first year with a missionary who has already been on his mission for one year. That way, you always have an experienced missionary with an inexperienced missionary. It has been my experience that these missionaries, though well trained in the basic message that the LDS church is wanting to get out to the world, are very ignorant of the true history of their church and church leaders. This is perfectly understandable since the missionaries are young men and have not had that many years to study their faith. Since I have not found anyone in the LDS church yet that can answer my questions, it has driven me to a search of my own of the LDS scriptures. Below, you will discover what I have been able to find out. I will leave the truth to itself and allow you to draw your own conclusions about the LDS faith.
What is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and how did it begin?
The LDS Teaching
In the early 1800's there was a young man named Joseph Smith that lived with his family in upstate New York. According to Smith, there was a surge in religious activity in the many churches in that area. Joseph never felt that he should join any of the churches in the area and it troubled him as to why he could never feel good about them. Joseph devoted himself to prayer and one night, in the spring of 1820, when Joseph was barely fifteen years old, in a grove of trees, he was approached by God the Father and God the Son, Jesus Christ. Joseph was told "to join none of them, that all were corrupt, all were abomination in the eyes of the Lord". Joseph continued to seek the Lord and in September 1823 he was visited by an angel that said, "I am Moroni, and am come to you, Joseph, as a messenger from God."
Moroni said that he was an ancient prophet that had lived in the America's and that there were golden plates that were buried in the ground and at some point, Joseph would be worthy enough to recover the plates and translate what was written on them. Joseph would be used mightily by God to restore the gospel to the earth.
Eventually, Joseph was able to dig up the golden plates and with the help of a man named Oliver Cowdery, was able to translate the plates into what is now called, "The Book of Mormon".
Questions and Problems
The LDS church claims that the gospel was completely distorted and perverted and was taken from the earth. That is why God had to find a servant who was worthy to restore the gospel to the earth.
1. Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
Jesus said that He would build the church upon himself. Peter was the small rock and Jesus was the large rock, if you study the Greek in this instance. Either Jesus was not telling the truth or Joseph Smith and the Mormon church are not telling the truth or, you discount the Bible as not being correctly translated.
Of course, this is what the LDS church says, "We believe the Bible, so long as it is translated correctly." It is important to note that the ancient Hebrew and Greek manuscripts can be studied and even the LDS church's official "Joseph Smith Translation" of the Bible includes the scripture above.
2. The LDS church believes that, after Jesus was resurrected, He came to the America's and set up an apostleship just as He had in the middle east. There were twelve apostles here in the Americas just as there were in Israel. This is where the current structure of the LDS church comes from.
The Book of Mormon tells us that there were three of the twelve apostles in the Americas that were granted everlasting life on this earth. Along with them, the LDS church believes that because of the Apostle John's devotion to Christ in the Middle East that he also never passed away but walked this earth spreading the gospel daily with the other three. If this is the case, how could the gospel have been completely taken off of the face of the earth? If what the LDS church says is true, the three un-named apostles in the Americas and John lost their faith.
What is meant by the term "Eternal Progression"?
The LDS Teaching
Eternal Progression is the teaching by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints that if a person lives according to their faith and does all that is required of them in the LDS temples, they can progress to the "Celestial" kingdom and eventually become God of their own world. The man that ascends to this height and progression will also take upon himself multiple wives, thus continuing the practice of polygamy in heaven. The LDS church also teaches that this "God the Father" and "God the Mother" will reproduce through normal, sexual means and have offspring to populate their world.
Questions and Problems
In the book of 1 Corinthians chapter 15, the Apostle Paul was teaching the people of Corinth about the Biblical doctrine of the resurrection of the dead. For some reason, there were members in the Corintian church that had come to believe that there was no resurrection of the dead. Paul explains to them that this is a most important doctrine in the Christian faith for, if Christ had not been resurrected from the dead then the whole Christian message was in vain. Paul was showing the people in the Corinthian church that when our bodies are resurrected, they will be different than they are now.
1. The LDS church teaches there are three degrees of glory:
- The Telestial kingdom is the lowest and is where men and women who did not serve God will go after death.
- The Terrestrial kingdom is where people will go after they die, if they were good people who believed in God but did not go through the "sacred" or secret ceremonies in an LDS temple.
- The Celestial kingdom is where those people who were righteous before God and did good in this life and went through the "sacred" or secret ceremonies in the LDS temples around the world. There are members of the LDS church that can perform temple ceremonies by proxy for those who have already died, saving them from the first two kingdoms and allowing them to go on to the third and highest kingdom. If a person does not make it to this kingdom, he cannot progress to become a God of his own world.
2. Although the LDS church teaches that any man can become the God of his own world, they will never admit that they are polytheists, or believers in many Gods. At the very least, they are Henotheists, being people who believe there are many Gods but claim to only worship one.
3. A problem that arises here is, what happens to the women who are Godly that have earned their way to the Celestial kingdom but their husband has not. It is important to note that the people that have ascended to the Celestial kingdom can descend back and forth to the lower two kingdoms but the people of the lower kingdoms can never ascend higher than the kingdom they have earned. The LDS answer to this is that those men who have ascended to the Celestial kingdom will take the wives of those who's husband's weren't worthy, thereby assuring the practice of polygamy to continue throughout eternity.
4. Brigham Young (the second President/Prophet of the LDS church) taught the Adam/God Theory. He believed that Adam had actually ascended to the Celestial kingdom and took Mary for his wife. Through their sexual union, Jesus was born. The LDS church has, for the most part, stepped away from this doctrine.
5. The Bible teaches there is but ONE God, manifested in three persons, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Polytheism and Henotheism are not taught in the Bible and are in dire contradition to it's teachings.
1 Cor. 8:6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.
1 Tim. 2:5
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
1. Although the LDS church does not condone polygamy among their members, they do believe that church members who are worthy will practice polygamy in the afterlife. This is part of their "Eternal Progression" doctrine.
2. "The Principle" is the term that the founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith used to refer to polygamy. He taught that if the LDS church ever gave up this practice, they would lose all of their power as a church. He also taught that polygamy would always be practiced among the Mormon people. Interestingly enough, Wilford Woodruff, as the "prophet/president" of the LDS church changed that doctrine so that Utah could gain statehood. For more information on this, go to Utah Lighthouse Ministry.
Click Here to go to Page Two for more Questions and Answers on Mormonism and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
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