devotional

22FEB
2018

To The Mormons

To the Mormons:

This posting is a small and perhaps final part (depending on any responses to it) of an on-going dialogue between myself and a few Mormon people. One here in particular. It’s a brief point by point response to some objections to the Christian faith. There are three separate posts answered from her here. My comments are preceded with “Me”; her’s with “Her”. Brilliant! I know. Posting this here is the only way to get a 13 page response to her since FB Messenger doesn’t allow copy/paste. There will be typos. I had to do it somewhat quickly.

Answered in an afternoon on 22 Feb.

Me: It isn’t Christianity that has the antagonism toward the LDS faith. It’s the LDS faith that has the antagonism against Christianity. You’ve proven that. It was Smith who claimed we’d all gone astray. It was Smith who claimed that all our creeds were an abomination. That all of our teachers had become corrupt, etc. At best, Mormonism is a henothestic religion. I notice you didn’t defend the plurality of gods belief. Smith’s final sermon records his belief that all of his listeners had to prepare to become gods themselves. That being your religion is not necessarily my qualm. My qualm is when you dare that it’s mine too. Welcome to the fight! The lie that men can become gods does not come from another testament of Jesus Christ, it comes from Satan. We saw it in Genesis 3:5.

On the Trinity. It comes from many streams of biblical evidence.
1) OC passages that point to this Messiah as God.
2) Statements Jesus made of himself.
3) Apostolic teaching on the triune God.

1) OC passages that point to this Messiah as God. Just a citation or two. Isaiah 9:6: “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” No one in Isaiah’s day was called such things. Matthew confirms what Jesus’ very name translates to in confirmation of this prophecy: “Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which translated means, “God with us.” Matthew 1:23. Who is he? Not a god with us. God with us (ὁ θεός). Also- in John 12:38-41 we read: “This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet which he spoke: “LORD, WHO HAS BELIEVED OUR REPORT? AND TO WHOM HAS THE ARM OF THE LORD BEEN REVEALED?” 39 For this reason they could not believe, for Isaiah said again, 40 “HE HAS BLINDED THEIR EYES AND HE HARDENED THEIR HEART, SO THAT THEY WOULD NOT SEE WITH THEIR EYES AND PERCEIVE WITH THEIR HEART, AND BE CONVERTED AND I HEAL THEM.” 41 These things Isaiah said because he saw His glory, and he spoke of Him.” John in this chapter is clearly talking about Jesus. The first quote he gives is of Isaiah 53: and the latter is from Isaiah 6:10. In Isaiah 6:1-5, we see Isaiah’s great vision of his God, high and lifted up, etc. It is this same God John tells us about is Jesus in John 12. This is simply undeniable with any honest dealing with the text. This is just one of many places where Jesus is identified as Yahweh.

2) Statements Jesus made of himself. “I am the way, truth,” etc. John 14. He takes the name “I AM” upon himself in John 8. They wanted to kill him for the blasphemy of it. He spoke of himself as the one in Daniel’s vision as the Ancient of Days who’ll come on the clouds to be worshiped by all the nations at his trial. The high priest tore his robe at the alleged blasphemy. He forgave sin in Luke 5 and many other places. Something they rightly understood as something only God can do. But they didn’t know he was God. Jesus said he was the judge of all thus to be equated in equal honor to the Father himself, John 5. Jesus received worship (even as a baby he was worshiped Matthew 2:2,11) from others in several places, Matthew 14:33; Matthew 28:17; Luke 24:52; John 9:38. This is something only due to the eternal God. Created things aren’t to be worshiped. He even told Satan to worship only God in Matthew 4 yet again he himself allowed men to worship him. Oh, the evidence just abounds. No man. No created thing speaks like Jesus. The lamb slain who was pierced and will come on the clouds, the Alpha and the Omega, God the eternal Son. “BEHOLD, HE IS COMING WITH THE CLOUDS, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. So it is to be. Amen. I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” Consistency is a key to interpretation.

3) Apostolic teaching on the triune God. They baptized, as they were commanded, in the names of the triune God- the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I know Mormons use the term trinity, but of course attempt to completely redefine it. This is disingenuous on your part. You know we mean one thing, and you another. They were all experiential Trinitarians in the Bible. They knew of the Father, had walked with or seen the risen Son, and were all in-dwelt by God the Holy Spirit. “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.” 2 Corinthians 13:14. John 1:1 reveals Jesus to be both “with God” and yet also “God himself”. A clear language and syntactical unification yet separation of the Son and the Father. In Philippians 2:6-11, we see the eternal Son “who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man…” Jesus “emptied himself”. He already “existed in the form of God”. In Romans 9:5, Paul says, “whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen.” He is the eternally blessed God. In Romans 1, Paul directly rebukes Mormonism (which of course was not yet) for its corruption of God in its theology: “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.” Mormonism calls God a mere exalted man. Corruptible in some preexistence at least. Smith was abundantly clear on this. Young was abundantly clear on this. That a council of the gods came together and exalted god to godhood. This is men attempting to make God a mere man. A corruptible man made into just one god among billions. John 1:1 goes directly along with what John writes in 1 John 1:1-4. This all goes with Genesis 1:1. The same God who did what he did “in the beginning” is in view that became flesh. We have fellowship with the triune God, through the Son, by the Holy Spirit. John 16:13. “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.” This is just a tiny taste of the thousands of years of biblical teaching that leads to us testing Smith and Young and finding their words false.

Trinity. A definition:
http://www.vor.org/truth/1689/1689bc02.html
Citations provided here in one part: Matthew 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Exodus 3:14; John 14:11; 1 Corinthians 8:6; John 1:14,18; John 15:26; Galatians 4:6; Hebrews 1-2.

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Point by point from your 1st post-
The Trinity:

Her: “The first defense of the doctrine of the Trinity was in the early 3rd century by the early church father Tertullian.”

Me: The first recorded use of the term “Trinity” was from Tertullian. Yes. But only a historical revisionist would pretend that the council of Nicaea (325 AD) dealt with theological issues only from 324 AD on. And certainly, a person whose religion doesn’t spring up till 1800+ years after its claimed origination wouldn’t begrudge the Christians their 200 year timeframe to defend this matter through its persecution period. The debate that came together to be settled then was at the tail end of centuries of separate debates. As the canon came together, matters were dealt with by what authors had where they were. Not everyone had a full canon of text. That doesn’t happen until the fourth century as far as we know. As persecution waned, the debates became more possible. Words like “triad” were used by others such as Theophilus of Antioch before “trinity” which came to best fit the whole counsel of God on the matter as we saw. Why the terms? Because as the Gnostics challenged the humanity of Jesus the Christians in those days answered *by the Scriptures* as best they could with what they had. They warded off the heresy that said Jesus wasn’t truly a human being. Then the Arians arose who challenged that Jesus was the eternal God. Just as you do now. We deal with you today as they had to with the Arians *from the same Scriptures*. Now, it is certain that no one believed what Smith and Young did till the 19th century, but you (Arians and Mormons) both make the exact same claim on one front at least. That “there was a time when the Son was not”. The Christians then denied that *by the Scriptures* as we do as well today with you. As has already been briefly laid out. Let’s debate it. Bring the whole church together. I’d delight to talk with your bishop and elders. Ignatius of Antioch was martyred in AD 108. Before his death, on his way to it in fact, he wrote of God saying, “There is one physician, both fleshly and spiritual; made and not made; God incarnate; true life in death; both of Mary and of God: first passable, then impassable; even Jesus Christ our Lord.” (https://books.google.de/books?id=E6v1uSfoTjIC&pg=PA26&lpg=PA26&dq=ignatius+antioch:+%22first+passable+then…%22&source=bl&ots=zkXV3C4FoV&sig=6KOXIHBawqm77ZNtbKy4s-O-kKE&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjD467lrrnZAhWBF8AKHRTqDBwQ6AEIKTAA#v=onepage&q=ignatius%20antioch%3A%20%22first%20passable%20then…%22&f=false) I can use this in my teaching on Christology today. He wasn’t a Baptist, but this is Christian theology on Jesus. This was long before Nicaea. Nicaea was not the first debate on the nature of God. It also wan’t the last. Yes, the Faith had to be defended and the church had to do so in every generation with its new challenges. We still have do so today with Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Islam, Scientology, etc. Each of these groups will claim the Bible (not so much the Scientologists). As the church responded to the attacks of Satan throughout the years in its defense of the faith once for all time delivered, the Trinity was just another part of that. For 2,000 years now, Christians have defended the Faith *by the Scriptures*. We test Joseph and Brigham by what came first because if they are prophets of God (as God could give) then we should expect them to speak in line with those we know spoke from God already. “Test all things; hold fast what is good.” 1 Thessalonians 5:21. For just a few other quotes well before Nicaea which helped shape Christian Trinitarian history, here’s a short compendium: https://carm.org/early-trinitarian-quotes.

Her: “He explicitly defined the Trinity as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and defended the Trinitarian theology… it is not biblical!!!! Also Athanasius, the bishop who also helped formulate this doctrine, confessed that the more he wrote on the matter, the less capable he was of clearly expressing his thoughts regarding it. (insert sarcasm here) Now that sounds like a solid doctrine..”

Me: Provide me that citation please. And there were many men present at Nicaea. Athanasius was only one of them. Arius was condemned a heretic.

Her: “Ok to continue….. Although Christian dogma was a complete mystery to him (Constatine), he did realize that a unified church was necessary for a strong kingdom. When negotiation failed to settle the dispute, Constantine called for the first ecumenical council in Church history in order to settle the matter once and for all. Six weeks after the 300 catholic bishops first gathered at Nicaea in 325 A. D.( A. D. = after the death of Christ) , the doctrine of the Trinity was hammered out. The God of the Christians was now seen as having three essences, or natures, in the form of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Again not biblical but made up!!!!!”

Me: I’ve already briefly addressed this. This is an LDS skew of the facts to fit your argument. The Deity of Jesus was disputed long before Nicaea in many ways in many places. The humanity of Jesus was debated. The Deity of Jesus was debated. Then also arose Trinity from new challenges shaped by the earlier forms of the debate. There are often many fronts in a war. As Constantine established a form of Christianity it would help answer many questions. But Nicene orthodoxy doesn’t come from anything but an examination of the Scriptures.

Her: “Again you are welcome! Welcome for the scriptures you must have missed and the history you must have over looked!! Your quote of “2. We believe in the 66 books of the biblical canon dating to the 4th century AD. Nothing more,nothing less. Nothing needed.” Then what about all the scriptures left out of the canonization of scriptures? The bible cites at least 26 that are not included in the version that you have today…. So what of them they were scripture too? Yes they were and are just they did not fit the agenda of kings and so called bishops of the time and therefore were omitted.”

Me: I teach textual criticism. I understand textual variations, transmission issues, manuscript pedigree, omissions, emendations, extra-biblical citations, copyist issues, etc. I do so so that 1) I can know what all those footnotes in my Bible mean, and 2) so that no cult can pull the wool over my eyes. What I have in my Bible today is proven to be the word of God. I base it primarily on Jesus’ own words in Matthew 24:35 that “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away” and secondarily on all of the evidence and work done in history on textual criticism. The latter supports the former. What I have today in my hands I can prove as 1) that book received and “canonized” in 325/386 AD, and 2) a reliable record of its first century now lost to history manuscripts. The Book of Mormon has undergone so many revisions that if you compare its number of revisions to that of the Bible and relate that to size, languages, the years of its transmission, etc., that the ratio would be somewhere near 1 to a 1,000. We have the text the eyewitnesses of Jesus wrote for us. The books in the Old Covenant were those 39 books laid up in the temple. No one in Jesus’ day debated which books were authoritative. It wasn’t debated in the Gospels because they knew which books were from God inspired. We do too. I’ve taught on this many times on my website, Biblecia.com. There’s video, audio, articles, etc. Keyword searches would find my works in this area. Your reference to “scriptures left out of the canonization” is as baseless as those of Dan Brown’s. James White, Bruce Metzger, FF Bruce, Philip Schaff, Michael Kruger, John MacArthur, Robert Godfrey, Walter Martin. These are a few biblical teachers on the matter I’ve consulted for years now.

Her: “Let’s recap here The Trinity came AFTER the death of Jesus Christ and is NO WHERE STATED in the Bible and was not taught until MANY YEARS LATER and is a Catholic doctrine.”

Me: If you leave aside the Bible itself which is where those debates all worked to be settled at…then ok.

Her: “The Scriptures, in which the Father and Son are said to be as one, is, in your case misunderstood, and in fact you are wrong. They are one in purpose but not the same essence. Your beloved trinity is indeed the mixing of scripture with mans understanding and the very men who helped formed it were anti-Christ and were seeking to calm unrest among the people they sought to rule and have subjugated to them…”

Me: Now we’re getting somewhere at least! This doesn’t sound like your previous comments about, “what’s so wrong about what we believe as Mormons” approach to your Christian relative. You try to position yourself as a member of the Faith. Now you sound a bit more like Joseph Smith: “All their creeds are an abomination…” this is honesty from Mormons. Thank you! Stop pretending like we have the same religion. We don’t. You’re proving it. This is helpful. What’s annoying and counterproductive is the Mormon not being upfront about all this.

Her: “So…LET me state it clearly to you once again and maybe you will read it this time and understand that We do not believe in the same God and nor will we ever. I know I made a mistake early on in my posts but upon further investigation of your beliefs and thanks to you I now know that. I do not ever want to believe what you believe. Your beliefs clearly go against many scriptures that I guess you may have to omit to continue in your error of teaching. Like in Genisis 1: 27 so clearly states that.”

Me: Well, I pray he grant you repentance. We don’t know him now, that’s certain. Mormonism and Christianity are not the same religion at all. Yes. Only one of us is correct. This is what I’ve said from the start unlike you and your sister and many Mormons today who believe *exactly* as you do (because it’s what Smith and Young thought) yet want to call us all brothers.

Her: “27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. SO tell me now, how can he only be matter and we some how are created in his image? Take the scriptures as truth and read the whole chapter and re-read this scripture. We are created in his image. What about when Jesus was resurrected and showed his body…”

Me: We are created in his image. He speaks, we speak. He hears, we hear. He sees, we see. It is remarkable! We are indeed created in his image. It doesn’t mean he’s an exalted man now arranging matter to simply look like him. The rest of what you provide here is somewhat incoherent and unrelated so I won’t reference it much except to say that Jesus was Resurrected physically. Yes. You got that from Christians. I would not argue otherwise at all.

Her: “Luke 24:
38 And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts?
39 Behold 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.
40 And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet.
41 And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat?
42 And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb.
43 And he took it, and did eat before them.

Jesus has a body, he was resurrected he had the apostles touch him.

2 John 1:3
3 Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.

Acts 3:13
3 The God of Abraham, and o3:13aac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, ………

2 John 1:
9 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
10 If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed……….
35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.
36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

One of my favorite scriptures……

John 3:16 ¶ For God so loved the world, that he gav3:16s only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

The three are separate and distinct!!!!! Just read the scriptures and take them for what they are because you claim that adding to the scriptures is not allowed. I think the Nicene Creed makes you a hypocrite and makes you the wolf in sheep’s clothing leading many astray from the plain and simple truths in the Bible.”

Me: The three *are* separate and distinct. Like most cultists you’ve obviously spent no time studying Christianity *from* Christians. Here’s my own personal ministry statement of faith on God: http://biblecia.com/article/statement-of-faith/ Article 2: “God is triune. Christian theology is Trinitarian theology. In the being of God there are three absolutely co-equal persons. The Father is fully God, the Son is fully God and the Holy Spirit is fully God. All eternal, all equal, individual yet indivisible, united yet distinct, one in essence and three in person. In a sound monotheistic framework, the Bible’s writers clearly call the Father God, the Son God and the Holy Spirit God. The Father sent the Son. The Son was submitted to him on earth. The Holy Spirit is also omnipresent, speaks on Jesus’ authority, enlightens, empowers and sends his saints. Jesus received worship and forgave sin. Jesus referred to himself as God. Both Old and New Covenant writers identify Jesus as God. Jesus himself, now glorified, was and is both fully God and fully man. Yahweh, being triune, is the only God who has ever or will ever exist, and is the unfathomably brilliant creator and sustainer of everything both seen and unseen.”

Her: “Let’s continue…..

John 1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit d1:32nding from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.
33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

Ooh and here again!! Yep the three of them as different and distinct..
Matthew 3: 13 ¶ Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
Yep… take it for what it is. Just read it as is. Don’t think about the philosophers, Constantine and that weird “doctrine” they came up with…”

Me: I don’t care much what any man teaches unless it’s in line with the Bible.

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Point by point from a 2nd post-

Her: “I quote you again: “That you deny salvation by grace alone. Now… Faith with out works is no faith at all!!! How can you say anything different? Once again you are very wrong in what you have said., I am so glad I could show you the true doctrine from the Bible.”

Me: What we Christians, especially since the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century teach is that our salvation is never by works, but never without works. Ephesians 2:8-10 says it all: “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” Again, you’ve obviously spent no time studying Christianity *from Christians*. I understand. Most Christians don’t even spend much time studying their own Scriptures. LDS doctrines on achieving godhood, wearing the right undergarments, marriage for time and eternity, baptism by proxy for the progression of the dead before Smith, etc., cannot easily be confused with the Christian understanding of the relationship between our works and our faith. I personally *adore* James’ epistle and speaking, as I got to just yesterday for over an hour, on the necessity of works as the evidence of a saving faith.

Her: “James 2:182:18, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.
19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?
21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

Literally you can’t get any clearer than this scripture. You must skip all these too…
You have to have faith and with that faith you then repent and try to live a good life. You cannot simply say. “I believe” and then get go to heaven. If so then you are as silly as you sound. It is required of us all to repent. Is that not work and a demonstration of our faith????”

Me: I’ve never argued that it’s just belief and that’s it. That’s all that’s required to have one’s sin forgiven and to be “saved” from God’s wrath, but we must, if we’re true disciples, bear fruit. Not to merit grace, but to prove it. Philippians 2:12-13: “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; 13 for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” Amen. But we Christians don’t teach this as a means of justification, nor do we teach it as the commands of a merely exalted man in his own zip code of the universe.

Her: “Here is another James 1:22 But be 1:22oers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

I quote you again “5. That you presume to add works of salvation for others by proxy in your temple ceremonies.”

You have obviously skipped over 1 Corinthians 15 where Paul is teaching that baptisms for the dead are a necessary doctrine. Imagine all the people who never got to read a scripture or know of the gospel. Are they lost? Nope, that is why there was a need and guess what just because we do this doesn’t mean that those who are baptized will go to heaven. Again we believe people will have to chose for themselves on the other side if they want to accept the gospel. But here is the scripture..
1 Corinthaians 15:13 But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:
14 And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
15 Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
16 For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:
17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins…….

28 And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
29 Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?
Pretty cool scriptures here…..”

Me: Here is what the cults often specialize in. If we’re wise, we can see it from a mile away. So, by “baptism from the dead” you allege that 1800+ years later what was actually meant by Paul was that endless genealogies were to be researched and codified, and adherents of a defunct then restored faith two millennia later were to go down into the waters of baptism with a temple recommendation from their bishop to be baptized in behalf of (literally saying the names of) their deceased ancestors who lived before they could hear the restored gospel of Smith and move on from light weight sort of hell to a better place. Seems legit. Cults specialize in obscure texts like this. Of which you need a “new prophet” to reveal the “true meaning” of and then build an entire theology on. I have studied these verses. Paul is not saying “we baptize for the dead”. He’s saying “they” first of all. His point isn’t about baptisms for dead people (as that would be heresy too in that no one is saved or progresses before God because of what someone else does for them) but his point is *that there is a Resurrection*. That’s all. They knew what he meant. His whole treatise from 1 Cor 15 is the Resurrection 1) of Jesus and 2) of all those who are in him. Your cult has one obscure text and the proclivities of a man two millennia later alleging what no one ever taught it meant since it was written.

Her: “Your quote “That you deny hell. Something Jesus warns of 16 times.”… yep we still believe in hell…. Proof of your error in thinking you know anything about my religion. We use the bible and yep we believe it. not sure where you get that from…”

Me: You deny hell as an eternal place of conscious torment from which there is no exit. Again, terms with different meanings between our religions.

Her: “You again “7. That you add continuing revelation through your claimed now-restored church. And that their ideas contradict the law and the prophets thus showing there’s no light in them.”

Amos 3:7 Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

You have claimed that your God is eternal yet you deny that he would keep the same form of communication and same form of his church for his followers.. You deny that he would allow for there to be continued communication, that is not an eternal God, that is a changing God and he therefore would cease to be a God.”

Me: No. He could. If he did they wouldn’t pervert what came before. That’s a test. In fact, in Deuteronomy 13:1-3 we read, “If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, 2 and the sign or the wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods’—which you have not known—‘and let us serve them,’ 3 you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the LORD your God is testing you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.” Smith proclaimed another god. A false god who was not eternal and who was just an exalted man. Anathema. He would be stoned. He proclaimed another gospel claiming angelic visitations. Anathema. I also have come to see the wisdom of God in giving us the OC before Jesus and the NC after which takes us through the end of time as we know it. No need of further revelation therefore exists. “Sufficiency” is my favorite word to use for the Bible and its 66 books.

Her: “You here too “8. Intentionally stopping.” I have no clue what you are trying to say here, but maybe you add another number to look like you have more points???”

Me: Yeah, I had a lot more. [(I know this is confusing to a reader outside the conversation. For brevity, I’d recently stopped from citing numerous other points on a previous subject we were discussing.)]

Her: “Anyway“ your quote “2. Your Jesus is the spiritual brother and ontological equivalent of Satan having the same created existence even just as the rest of us. The true Jesus is higher than the angels. The Mormon Jesus is not fit to worship. He is therefore a false Jesus. “

Isaiah 14: 12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!”

Me: Well there you have it. Again, my entire intention on engaging you is bearing fruit. You’re not the only one reading. Satan and Jesus are not ontological equals, my dear. That’s LDS theology; not Christian theology. One is the Creator and the eternal God. That’s Jesus. The other is a created being. That’s Lucifer. If any Christian worships Jesus as God (which we all do) then that person cannot be in fellowship with a LDS person who calls that wrong.

Her: “If he is a son he must be one of Heavenly Fathers Son. Yes a fallen son but a son none the less. But wait for this

Job 1: 6 ¶ Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. Let me guess you skip this too???? Crazy how plainly that it is said… I am astounded that you claim that you are some sort of a scripture scholar and have read the scriptures. Yet somehow missed this…”

Me: I haven’t skipped it. I just have the Holy Spirit who preserves me by his word from such errors in assuming that such a point could make Satan, a created being, an equivalent to Jesus, the un-created Creator.

Her: “I have part of my quote and then your quote….“we do have the Book of Mormon.. but do you realize that there were other people on the earth on different continents that also believed in God and Jesus?? Why would God give scripture to one group and let the others be forgotten?? We believe he wouldn’t.
1. Where’s the scripture for the Chinese then? The Russians? What books special did those on the Yucatán peninsula receive? We deny Jesus came to America at any time. No one taught that in the Faith before Smith.

John 10 :16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

Yep he went to other nations… crazy how you missed this scripture or misunderstood it… so the Book of Mormon is for the people of North, Central and South America as I stated. Yep the people of the Yucatan because geography shows us that it is on the map in that area. Yep there are even more scriptures that are cited in the Bible yet we do not have them yet.. Also, if you look at any history of indigenous peoples in the Americas, they all have a White God who came from heaven and gave them the words of God. This is also true for cultures in Asia and the pacific islands.”

Me: So where’s the book for the Australians? The New Zealanders? The Hawaiians or all of the isolated island chains? Does Smith divide these places up regionally, and did they all get led to buried plates too? Provide citations please. I’ll tell you what book is for them all- it’s the Bible and God’s Gospel for all nations. This argument of yours is just plain futile. It’s an American man’s claim to his own new religion. Jesus’ statement of another fold is of Gentiles, it’s not a hint at a secret up-coming missionary trip to America Smith would tell us about later. He sent the church to all the nations. He himself never left his home area in preaching. Samaria is as far which is the same region of Israel. Again, the cults and their capitalization on obscurities. In fact, you’re just creating an obscurity here. Clearly, Jesus always talked in light of his works to the Jew first and then also for the whole world. Provide evidence of your claims of a white god here in the Americas please.

Her: “Paid ministry:
13 I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the Lord of hosts.

And
1 Peter 5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;

I think these scriptures put you in a tough spot. I hope you are not paid to teach at your church….. I guess you might want to think about this..”

Me: No response given.

————————————————

Point by point on her 3rd post-

Her: “Extra scriptures and the translations:
The original text of the bible is written in Hebrew.”

Me: No, it’s Hebrew, Greek and some Aramaic. You say this a bit later.

Her: “Common knowledge is that the original text of the bible has a lot more scriptures/ books than we have in the common bibles used today.”

Me: Not at all common knowledge. I understand about the Apocrypha, but argue as clearly as many in history that while included in many manuscripts, they were never held as canonical. Catholicism added them as a second canon after the Reformation.

Her: “I am going to guess you have a plain/ modern English Bible from which you “teach”… it with its translation from the old English with the thee, thy and thou and many more old words that have much more meaning than our language today. What I read is very different from what you read. In your version things have been changed and plain truths have been omitted and changed. So imagine if that happened when changing only to modern English, how much was changed, lost, omitted and forgotten in the other translations that occurred. We use the King James Version, It was first printed by the King’s Printer Robert Barker and was the third translation into English approved by the English Church authorities. The first had been the Great Bible, commissioned in the reign of King Henry VIII (1535), and the second had been the Bishops’ Bible of 1568. In January 1604, James VI and Ist convened the Hampton Court Conference, where a new English version was conceived in response to the problems of the earlier translations. James gave the translators instructions intended to ensure that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy. The translation was done by 47 scholars, all of whom were members of the Church of England. In common with most other translations of the period, the New Testament was translated from Greek, the Old Testament from Hebrew and Aramaic, and the Apocrypha from Greek and Latin. In the Book of Common Prayer (1662), the text of the Authorized Version replaced the text of the Great Bible for Epistle and Gospel readings (but not for the Psalter, which substantially retained Coverdale’s Great Bible version) and as such was authorized by Act of Parliament.”

Me: Again, as stated before, thanks for what’s almost certainly a copy/paste here from some Mormon apologetics site, but you’re not sharing anything I don’t know already. And nothing you’ve said proves degradation. I love to see the attempted attacks on the Bible. If I had the time, I could take you to task on any accusation. I do indeed teach from several modern versions of the Bible. NASB, ESV, NET, NKJV- all useful. All blessed. I have a working knowledge of the Greek and Hebrew from which they all come, and tools to help me go further in their original languages. I’m certain based on the evidence that these modern versions are God-breathed. I do with all of Scripture what Jesus did. Even those texts written 1,500 years before him he held as binding and God-given.

Her: “So article of faith # 8 We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly;….yep makes sense, and doesn’t seem so horrible as you made it sound…. when you think about it the most correct version would be the original version Hebrew…. That is all that that statement means and since I don’t and I will guess again.. we don’t read Hebrew this is what we have..”

Me: You cannot trust the Bible because you do not have the God of the Bible to teach you. There are matters of transmission and translation that we need to learn as Christians. Indeed. After all, we’re not talking about some 200 year old text from one person in upstate New York who claimed he had special golden plates. We’re talking about actual history from thousands of years, millions of pages of text from all over the known world, in dozens of languages, covering a history of over 1,500 years. It takes work. In that work, we can prove we have what they wrote. But still, without salvation, none of that will matter to anyone be they Mormon or atheist.

Her: “Another point that no scripture should be added is again taken out of context and you a man of scripture should have recognized that The books of John in part were written after the book of Revelation. So that famous scripture in revelations regarding not adding more scripture is specifically to the book of Revelations and to say that you cannot have more scriptures is crazy and would mean that the books of John are then not relevant and not scripture Once again you misunderstand.”

Me: It’s “Revelation”, not “revelations.” Sorry. Can’t help it. The Revelation of Jesus Christ is believed to be the last book in the canon. I have no idea where your claims for later books come from. I don’t recall making the claim about adding to Scripture directly citing either of the biblical commands against doing so (Deuteronomy and Revelation). Now, it is certain that Smith and Young attempted to add to Scripture doctrines that are entirely inconsistent with it. That I will claim they did. And that is the evidence of their false religion. They did in fact “attempt” to add to the text, but I don’t recall citing this to you. I talked about your continuing revelation in the allegedly restored prophetic office of the LDS presidency.

Her: “Wolf in sheep’s Clothing is you man…. I have taken too much time to address some of your false concepts and your false statements about my church and will reiterate that after looking into what you call Christianity and what your God is. We do not believe in the same. Again I will say that I was attempting to better an awkward situation and you have totally blown it out of proportion. I will say that I have NO CARE OR CONCERN FOR ANY RESPONSE TO THIS POST AND WILL NOT LOOK FURTHER AT IT. Now maybe you should think about how Jesus taught “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” and before you come out swinging, telling me what you learned about my church by some who is probably not of my church or from the old not so trusty internet you should do a little more research and before you ever say that we are blind followers and uneducated, just think about your self and the fool you have made of yourself in your ignorance. I at least have read the bible and find everything you have stated to be completely opposite to what Christ has taught. So for you to say you are some kind of Christian is absurd! You might actually want to learn who Christ was. He taught with love! Learn from him!”

Me: Thank you for proving my original point. Why do we Christians deny Mormonism as being from God? For the same exact reasons we deny Islam, Buddhism, Eckankar or any other fasle view- because they deny the Faith delivered once for all time to the saints. Jude 3. You’ve proven it clearly. Mormons have proven it since their polygamous start. I cannot abide the “we are all Christians” approach such religions use. Please don’t deny my Jesus then tell me you’re a Christian. Bring the whole group. Let’s debate this. Bring the bishop. I humbly welcome it. I am your servant. I waited several days to provide my answers. Just like Jesus, I’ve told you of your grave errors plainly. I don’t want you to go to hell. Your Jesus cannot save you from the sins you’ve committed. Your system will end you in God’s righteous judgment condemned. There is only one Savior. Smith and Young denied him. As do you. That Savior is Jesus, and he is God with us. May God richly bless you in a true knowledge of him.

Isaiah 43:10-13:
“You are My witnesses,” says the LORD,
“And My servant whom I have chosen,
That you may know and believe Me,
And understand that I am He.
Before Me there was no God formed,
Nor shall there be after Me.
11 I, even I, am the LORD,
And besides Me there is no savior.
12 I have declared and saved,
I have proclaimed,
And there was no foreign god among you;
Therefore you are My witnesses,”
Says the LORD, “that I am God.
13 Indeed before the day was, I am He;
And there is no one who can deliver out of My hand;
I work, and who will reverse it?”

I typed this rather fast. I hope for the sake of anyone reading it that there aren’t too many typos.

 

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