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July 30, 2020 6:08 pm
One member is examining the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a biblical perspective viewpoint when 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 welcome to this additional viewpoint on Mormonism on your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM we are looking at chapter 10 in volume 2 of the book doctrines of salvation, a book that was compiled by Bruce R. McConkie, who afterwards became a Mormon apostle, but he is exciting. His father-in-law Joseph Fielding Smith and were looking at the topic of salvation for the dead, but quite interesting. It's actually in a chapter that's titled salvation for the living and on page 181.
He has the subheading. No second chance for salvation. We began this series yesterday by bringing out the fact that even Joseph Fielding Smith said that many Latter Day Saints are confused or at least miss understand about the doctrine of salvation for the dad he says this on page 184 so we thought since even Latter Day Saints can be confused about this and certainly it should not come as any big surprise that non-Latter Day Saints might be confused about this doctrine that is so unique to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. So today were going to start from the beginning of chapter 10, and go through some of the things that the 10th president of the church. Joseph Fielding Smith had to say on this topic when he speaks of no second chance for salvation. Our scriptures are very explicit in their declaration in relation to the requirements made of sons and daughters of God. They who overcome all things are to be crowned as sons and daughters of God and be members of the church of the firstborn others.
A number of things that we need to explain just in this first paragraph, first of all when he says they who overcome all things are to be crowned as sons and daughters of God and be members of the church of the firstborn, we should first explain what does it mean in the context of Mormonism to be a member of the church of the first born. Is this what Joseph Fielding Smith said in volume 2, page 41 exalted beings belong to church of firstborn. Those who gain exaltation in the celestial kingdom are those who are members of the church of the firstborn. In other words, those who keep all the commandments of the Lord there will be many who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, who shall never become members of the church of the firstborn so many members are never going to reach what Joseph Fielding Smith is describing as an exalted state. According to Mormonism and I noticed Eric that he talks about having to keep all of the commandments.
And that's important because notice when he says they who overcome all things now a footnote here says Revelation 21 seven. But if you look at Revelation 21, seven, and I'm reading from the Joseph Smith translation which reads just like the King James in this particular instance. It says he that overcome if shall inherit all things. It doesn't say he that overcome if all things shall inherit it says he that overcome if shall inherit all things, and that becomes important because there's also a reference to the doctrine and covenants section 76 versus 51 to 60. At the end of that paragraph and this is where Joseph Smith changes. Revelation 21, seven to make it appear that you must overcome all things. Let's try to understand this from a Christian perspective. What is the church of the firstborn. I have a commentary here.
It's written by Simon, just a marker and in his commentary in the book of Hebrews Hebrews chapter 12 verse 23 and let me just read that bill it says to the general assembly and church of the firstborn which are written in heaven, and to God, the judge of all and of the spirits of just men made perfect. That's all it says folks so what does that mean church of the firstborn. Well Simon, just a marker is going to explain. He said the New Testament shows repeatedly that Jesus is the firstborn of the nine occurrences of this word and he gives all the examples including Matthew 125 Romans 829 Colossians 115 he says seven referred to Jesus.
One passage, Hebrews 1128 relates to Egypt's firstborn slain by the angel of death and the other passage is Hebrews 1223 and yet he says concerns believers the privilege of the firstborn is that he is able to lay claim to the inheritance. Christ is therefore the error and we are co-heirs with him. According to Romans 817.
We value our birthright, whereas Esau despised it. According to Hebrews 1216 we are firstborn because of Christ who makes us holy and we who are made holy belong to the same family.
Bill let me show you the difference between what Hebrews 12 is talking about and what Joseph Smith said in doctrine and covenants section 76 because in verse 54 of section 76. He says they are they who are the church of the firstborn. What does a person have to do in order to become a member of the church of the firstborn according just to Smith while you have to have received the testimony of Jesus.
You have to believe in his name, and be baptized in the manner of his burial, and be baptized in water, you had to keep the commandments that you might be washed and cleansed from all their sins. And you had to overcome verse 53 by faith and are sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise which the father sheds upon all those who are just and true in Mormonism.
There's a whole bunch in the way of requirements.
All these works that have to be done, including keeping the commandments how many of them every Latter Day Saints does answer that all of them. How often all of the time in Christianity to be a member of the church of the firstborn is to be a believer through faith and faith alone, and we talked about that many times on the show in the same chapter now were looking at the second paragraph of chapter 10. Remember the chapter title is salvation for the living subtitle no second chance for salvation.
And what's fascinating is the verse he's going to quote from the book of Mormon and the second paragraph he says we are taught in the book of Mormon quote for behold, now is the time in the day of your salvation.
This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God.
Gay behold, the day of this life is a day for men to perform their labors." These people to whom Amalek was speaking had heard the truth and were not altogether ignorant of the plan of salvation because he had gone out of the church by apostasy.
So we declared unto them that this is the day for them to repent and turn on the God or they would be lost. What's interesting is that he has a footnote that last portion of the paragraph.
Footnote number three, and it's from the relief Society Magazine, volume 6, page 466.
It's a magazine that's dated June 9, 1919 in that magazine.
It says these people to whom Amalek was speaking had heard the truth and were not altogether ignorant of the plan of salvation because they had gone out of the church by apostasy.
The problem of course is that is Joseph Fielding Smith quoting Joseph Fielding Smith. That's not normally how you do it when you're trying to make a point for yourself is to quote yourself entities as the only support for what is trying to say when you look at Elmo 34 you find that it's basically it's a general it's a general admonition to men in general, and Joseph Fielding Smith even sites that portion here in the paragraph. For behold, now is the time in the day of your salvation. This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God gay. Behold, the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors. Now he classifies the people that are being addressed here by Emulex as being apostates. It's not really all that clear that that's true. In fact, Emulex continually reminds the people he is referring to. He keeps calling them brethren.
He talks about them is brethren, that you know you might say will maybe start about neophytes and Lamanites. Well, it doesn't sound like a sermon that you would give to apostates. It sounds like you may be given the sermon to people who might have questions or are not doing what they probably should be doing but certainly doesn't really sound like apostates. It's actually an admonition for men in general and I don't think we should lose sight of that. The reason I bring that up is because Joseph Julie Smith is the only Mormon leader that cited Elmo. 34 you have Spencer W. Kimball in the way he uses these passages from the book of Mormon is certainly not as if it's being addressed specifically to apostates.
Yeah, I mean it. In chapter 1 he starts off this life is the time and he quotes out of Alan chapter 34 verse 32 and the very first paragraph he said is the destiny of spirits of men to come to this earth and travel a journey of indeterminate length.
They travel sometimes dangerously, sometimes safely, sometimes sadly, sometimes happily always the road is marked by divine purpose and if you move over to page 9 after he's talking about Elma 34 and this is what he says about the dangers of delay because men are prone to postpone action and ignore directions. The Lord has repeatedly given strict injunctions and issued solemn warnings again and again in different phraseology and throughout the centuries the Lord has reminded man so that he could never have excuse and the burden of the prophetic warning has been that the time to act is now.
In this mortal life. One cannot with impunity delay his compliance with God's commandments and I were just quoting a little bit out of chapter 1 but nowhere does Spencer W. Kimball make it appear that apostates are being talked about, but it's for everybody Mormon or non-Mormon. You cannot delay repentance until the next life and that's why I think Joseph Fielding Smith's use of the word apostasy can give a latter-day St. very full sense of security they might read those passages of what amulet was seen is expected. A person must do, and then think to themselves will, but I'm not an apostate. I'm a member of the church I go to the temple I been baptized. I partake of the sacrament. I give my tides I don't fit into that category. So therefore, I guess it's okay for me to procrastinate the day of our repentance. I still think that that kind of reasoning would be wrong because other leaders have talked about the danger of putting off getting things right in your life before you die or procrastinating your repentance, so I do think that that word apostasy is being read into these passages.
I think what we have here is a case of Joseph Fielding Smith doing a bit of ice that Jesus, that word is not even used in those chapters leading up to chapter 34 and Bill we quote Elma 30 formally done this many times before on this radio show as authoritative and is not authoritative to us, but it is supposed to be authoritative to the latter-day St., but I'm going to say I would agree with the idea that this life is the time Hebrews 927 and second Corinthians chapter 6 verse two.
Both say that it's needing to be done in this life. There is not a second chance of salvation. Thank you for listening. If you would like more information regarding his research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website www.mrm.org you can request a free newsletter Mormonism research. We hope you join us again as we look at another viewpoint is have you ever wondered what life is like for women and children to attracting polygamy.
If so, you're invited to hear from ministries aimed at reaching those in polygamy, as well as testimonies of former polygamist were now Christians. This event will be held in Sandy, Utah on Saturday, September 19 from 830 to 2:30 PM registration is $20 per person includes a continental breakfast and lunch for questions or to register, call Chris at 801-754-3636 again that's 801-754-3636