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May 16, 2020 10:05 am
In their own words collection of Mormon quotations compiled by Mormonism research ministries Bill McKeever is a valuable resource when wanting to know what Mormon leaders have said on a given topic and pick up your copy you tell lighthouse bookstore or MRM.org viewpoint is man-made examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a biblical perspective view .1 Mormonism is sponsored by Mormonism research ministry since 1979 Mormonism research ministry has been dedicated to equipping the body of Christ with answers regarding the Christian faith in a manner that expresses gentleness and respect. And now, your host for today's viewpoint on Mormonism. Our thanks to Adam program for that musical introduction welcome to this edition of viewpoint on Mormonism. I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM we continue looking at gospel standards a book that was compiled by Dr. G Homer, Durham. He was a historian in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and what he compiled were various quotations from the seventh president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Heber J.
Grant. This book was given away as a Christmas gift by the first presidency of the LDS church in 1994 and as we mentioned in a previous show Heber J. Grant is the last of the polygamist presidents, even though he died in 1945 years born in 1856 he had three wives at one time, but Heber J. Grant had a lot of interesting things to say, as do many of the leaders of the LDS church, and that's why we are going through this book gospel standards today were going to be looking at what he taught.
Regarding the importance of commandment keeping which Eric seems to be a common theme in all these books because commandment keeping is absolutely essential if a member of the LDS church hopes to become exalted after their judgment. This is what Grant writes on page 98 of gospel standards.
Inasmuch as the church to which you and I belong is the church of Jesus Christ established by the Savior himself through the instrumentality of the Prophet Joseph Smith. I do not think we need to worry about being admitted into the various Christian denominations. The one thing that you and I need to worry about, and the only thing is with regard to keeping the commandments of the Lord living our religion as Latter Day Saints is a phrase in there that I think is important and that is worry about being admitted into the various Christian denominations. It appears to me by what he is saying here that Heber J. Grant would not have been one of those as we see in many members of the LDS church. I don't get the impression that Grant would be bothered by the fact that the great majority of professing Christians in the world would not see Mormonism as being a part of the Christian fold and therefore Mormons not meeting the historical definition of what a Christian is at the same time.
I think this just show that some of the members must have been asking about that. When are we going to be able to join with the other Christian churches and he's saying I don't think we need to worry about that.
Rather you just need to worry about obeying what's been given to you in the context of Mormonism.
I can understand completely. Grant saying the statement like that because I don't understand it myself and I was mentioning that an earlier show.
I don't understand why so many Latter Day Saints are all flustered because we as evangelicals do not embrace them as part of Christianity. That's the way our doctrine reads. That's the way we understand they understand their doctrine the way it reads and it certainly excludes us, so why would they have a difficulty if we reciprocate with that feeling. It's not that I don't want them to be a part of the Christian fold most certainly I do. But in order to come under that umbrella.
There are certain things that must be met when you must be justified by faith. You must not think that your works have any bearing whatsoever on whether or not you are justified, and of course Mormonism denies that main teaching of the Christian faith. Here's a quote from page 38 of gospel standards, grant rights.
These duties and obligations are calculated to make us godlike in our disposition. They are calculated to make G gods of us and to fit and qualify us that we may become joint heirs with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ that phrased joint heirs with Christ, to Chris, that comes from the New Testament. I've often wondered how that works in the context of Mormonism, though, because as we understand Mormonism if Joseph Smith was telling us the truth that his God was once a man like us that he must've lived in an environment that was ruled over by another God that preceded him. If that pattern goes for that God is well than that God must've also been a human at some time who was under the auspices of another God. Further back. This is where we get this idea of an infinite regression of God's gift, Mormonism is true, but when it talks about joint heirs. How does that work with the understanding of Mormonism in this regression of God's hot how were the joint heirs. They all get their own world.
I've never heard any Latter Day Saints leader talk about how their God is a joint heir with the God that preceded them. Have you know, I've never heard that either.
Rarely do you ever hear any Latter Day Saints leader talking about what God was before he became God.
They just kind of ignore all of that but yet if you have the Lorenzo Snow couplet as Mandy is God once was, as God is man may be that seems to be giving us a pretty good skeleton of what they think God was before. Can't we just put some skin on that based on what we see now. It would seem to make sense and this is why we as Christians would have problems with that couplet because if God was a man like us then. Obviously if we are sinners. He must've been the center and how do you attain that bill you attain it through your good works, and in fact another quote on pages 36 and 37 Grant says if we keep the commandments of God, he will love us and the Savior will manifest himself onto us. If we fail to keep the commandments of God, there is no promise made to us. The first quote of the day that we talked about also talks about you just need to worry about keeping the commandments of the Lord and living your religion as Latter Day Saints.
A very clearly to become a God and to be able to have the celestial kingdom. It's going to be based on what you do know another quote on page 45 deals with faith and he says we are told that faith without works is dead, that as the body without the spirit is dead, so also is faith without works dead and I am sorry to say that there are many professed Latter Day Saints who are spiritually dead. Now if I'm somebody who heard Grant say that I'm not gonna take that as a compliment but as a slap. No, I would say the one word that would come to my mind would be ouch because he seems to be stating something that we've been saying for quite a while because if the requirement for exultation is a success at keeping all of the commandments. It seems like Heber J. Grant recognized even back then many of them were not doing that he's really saying nothing different than what we say to Latter Day Saints here and now. Are you doing everything that you're supposed to be doing that when he cites James 220 faith without works is dead. I think we need to emphasize this again even as New Testament Christians will have a problem with what James is saying I agree with what James is saying faith without works is dead.
A living faith is going to have works, is just that works do not justify us or forgive us as it's taught in Mormonism certainly good works of the byproducts of saving faith. Notice again. He doesn't quote verse 10 in James chapter 2 Desi because if you're going to go by the law, you have to keep all the law, because to offend the law. One point is to offend it in all points that when he says that there are many professed Latter Day Saints who are spiritually dead.
He doesn't say how many he thinks but we have seen other quotes from leaders who have said as few as maybe 1/4 of all Latter Day Saints are actually doing everything they're supposed to do you think in the 21st century people are more faithful than they were in the days when Heber J.
Grant wrote this book. It's hard to say. However, I would say I don't think any of them are living up to the high standard that Mormon leaders have set down and so therefore what is it matter what the percentage is because of none of them are doing that, then obviously the restored gospel of Mormonism can't be good news. Another quote comes from pages 35 and 36 of gospel standards and this is what Grant says I believe if I were to call for those people here today who have been taught and believe all the revelations contained in the book of doctrine and covenants to be the inspired words of God and that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. Nearly all who are in this congregation raise their hands and say they knew these things to be true, but if I were to call for all those who had been absolutely honest with God and keeping his commandments. I am afraid a majority of the congregation would not raise their hands if I were to ask for those who observe the word of wisdom and who did not spend a part of their means for tobacco, a liquor and you paid an honest tithing to the Lord. One half of those here today, would, I am afraid fail to lift up their hands. A great majority would answer that they had received their endowments in the Temple of God that they had entered into covenants with the Lord.
They know the covenants they have made with our heavenly father and how many are there who carry out these covenants that they have entered into.
Then he says I feel that there is plenty of room for improvement and we should improve that goes along with what you just said earlier that Psalm had think that you said as many as 1/4. Here we find Heber J. Grant is saying as many as half would not qualify.
Now think about that. You see all those faces in general conference filling up the conference center just divided in half. According to Heber J. Grant.
He would say probably half of those people who were raising their hand confirming the appointment of leaders and so forth are doing what they are supposed to be doing. If Heber J Graham saw that as a means to show there's a problem. Why can't we when we were witnessing to our Mormon friends merely asking them. Are you living up to the standards that you think are necessary in order to get the best your religion has for you. I would say in our experience, we found that it's far more than half are not doing what they're supposed to be doing so. I think maybe Heber J. Grant is being somewhat generous when he makes that comment what you think why I agree I think that many Latter Day Saints know what they're supposed to do and they don't do it. How many actually have Temple recommends I mean I I bet there are fewer than half of all Latter Day Saints who even possess a valid Temple recommend and one of the main reasons why many of them are not going to have that recommend is the issue of tithing. This is what he says on page 183. Grant says the most prosperous men all over this country wherever the Latter Day Saints are scattered are those who have paid an honest tithing and who have been the most liberal in donating for temples, so it will always be yeah definitely tithing is always on the hit parade.
It's very conspicuous how they always bring up the tithing that hasn't as important as it is in the context of Mormonism.
How can a person get the quotes that we are citing today if they would like to see these quotes I can go to MRM.org and in the search engine and type in Christmas gift in the first article to come up contains links to all the books in the Christmas series from 1981 to 2017, along with compiled quotes that we have used as well as the additional quotes from the different books so if you you've heard a quote you like can find the quotes there and maybe share that with others who would like to hear what we have talked about.
Thank you for listening you would like more information regarding his research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website at www.mrm.org you can request a free newsletter Mormonism research. We hope you will join us again as we look at another viewpoint is sharing your faith with the Latter Day Saints helps to know what their church is taught in several basic topics.
For this reason, this research ministry has provided its crash course is a crash course, Mormonism includes concise articles highlighting what LDS leaders and church manuals have taught on issues that will probably come up in a typical conversation.
You can find these informative articles and crash course Mormonism.com that's crash course Mormonism.com