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Christmas Book Citations Harold B. Lee Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
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July 9, 2020 6:38 pm

Christmas Book Citations Harold B. Lee Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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July 9, 2020 6:38 pm

This is our final week of a series focusing on books given away to other general authorities and church employees by the First Presidency between 1981 to 2017. If the First Presidency thought these books were worthy of being reprinted using expensive leather covers and gilded pages, they must be reliable and worthy to be … Continue reading Christmas Book Citations Harold B. Lee Part 3 →


Answering questions by doing what you were hearing Johnson deals with 36 commonly asked questions by your LDS friends and neighbors.

It's a great resource for Christians want to share their faith with friends and loved ones.

Be sure to pick up your copy today at your favorite Christian bookstore viewpoint on Mormonism program that examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a biblical perspective viewpoint on 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 addition 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 will folks today we wrap up our 75th show on the subject of books that were given away as Christmas gifts by the first presidency between the years 1981 to 2017 and Eric as we finish this series, let's once again let people know how they can get a lot of the quotes that we cited either on air as well as a lot of other quotations we just did not have time to cover and I want to say I've enjoyed this 15 week series I think we have covered a lot of ground talking about quotes that have been used in books that were given away by the first presidency I think these are important quotes. So if you'd like to see those quote you can go to and in the search engine.

Just type in Christmas book in the first article to come up is going to contain links to all the books in the Christmas series today were to be using quotes from the teachings of Harold B. Leavitt, as you mentioned, Bill. We are not able to cover all of the quotes we put together so you can click on each of the books that we cover from 1981 in 2017 and I think you'll be fascinated to see some of the things that these leaders have said that. I think that's good to bring out this was never meant to be an exhaustive study, but as we've said in many of the programs that we have aired you would think that the first presidency felt that the books they were giving away as Christmas gifts for any given year. Must've had some kind of theological value, otherwise they wouldn't give them away in the first place. Well, if the first presidency thought that they had some theological value. The fact that they are giving away the book I think gives special recommendation to those books and as we mentioned in the first week of the series.

These are leather bound box.

They have gilded pages they were put together at great expense. The only way you're going to get a copy is if you're a general authority or an employee of the church. So the only way I have most of the set is by purchasing them on eBay. The average book cost maybe 20 or $30. Some of the books go for a couple of hundred dollars, but these are mostly reprints of what we would call classic books books written by all of the different presidents and the apostle James Talmage as well as the standard works of these I think are the best of the best and that's why we wanted to take such a long look at these books in the series. One of the subjects that we want to look at today as Erica said, comes from the book teachings of Harold Bewley. He was the 11th president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the subject of the book of Mormon geography. Now we know that this is a controversial subject. Even within the church.

There are basically two camps in the Mormon church right now. Some hold to what's called a heartland model for the book of Mormon geography that would place the neophytes and Lamanites in North America. The United States area and then you have another group which is known as the limited geography model and a lot of your BYU professors normally hold to this. Although I don't think I would be wrong to say that people in either camp can shift as time goes by.

I know some that used to be in the Central American limited geography Now feel that they are more in the heartland model See even when Harold B. Lee was alive. This was a controversy that he obviously was well aware of and he's addressing the seminary and institute faculty at Brigham Young University on July 8, 1966 and again this is found in the teachings of Harold Bailey.

He said don't be concerned over book of Mormon geography. Some say the hell Camara was in southern Mexico and someone pushed it down still farther and not in Western New York.

Well, if the Lord wanted us to know where it was or where Zarahemla was, he'd have given us latitude and longitude. Don't you think and why bother our heads, trying to discover with archaeological certainty, the geographical locations of the cities of the book of Mormon like Sarah Hemlock. This is a classic whistling past the graveyard and what I mean by that is this is a huge issue. At least you would think it would be a huge issue, mainly because the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints instills in its people that the book of Mormon is talking about real places, real events and real people but yet there's no evidence to show that these people groups really existed at all. There are no artifacts in the history Museum across from Temple Square that are related to the neophyte people. You won't find anything like that on display. So this would cause some concern for a lot of Latter Day Saints. Now you would think will does it concern you build it, they haven't found everything in the Bible know it doesn't concern me at all. One of the reasons why it doesn't concern me is because of the wealth of things that have been found. The fact that they have found so much to support the biblical message tells me that the things they have yet to find it's okay. It's okay with me. But when you find nothing for the book of Mormon. It does tend to bolster the position that the book of Mormon is nothing more than 1/19 century novel when he says some say the hell Camara was in southern Mexico and somebody's pushed it down still farther well today Brigham Young University faculty in the different departments they are dealing with the science would pretty much say that it would be in either Central America or somewhere in that region and not in Western New York. It's interesting that Lee at the time was an apostle, and yet he doesn't seem to have any clue, it would seem like the leaders ought to have a better theory to be able to say it's probably this he saying I don't know what it is when I would argue that I doubt if the church is going to come out anytime soon to pick a position it would just cause too much controversy within the church because as you said, we have BYU professors holding onto the central America or limited geography theory, but then you have prominent Mormons like Glenn Beck. Last I heard was still holding onto the heartland model so that would cause a lot of controversy among the members and yet this is an issue that I agree with you, should be discussed and determined by the leadership and you would think they would be able to do that by revelation.

If by nothing else. You would think but yet they don't. They remain pretty much silent on this subject and allow members to believe whatever they want now in light of where the book of Mormon lands are located in the fact that there is no evidence archaeologically or historically for the book of Mormon itself no doubt has caused a lot of people to leave but what does Harold Bewley have to say about those who would not listen to the guiding of their profits.

Page 392 today the greatest enemies we have are those who, for flattery of the world would betray the Savior by denying his profits and making light of church pronouncements on vital issues a strike at the very foundation of the Lord's work, such we have among us today. Make no mistake, I want you to notice folks how he equates the Savior with the Mormon prophets.

If you deny with the prophets are telling you. Basically what you're doing in their eyes, at least, at least in here will be Lee's eyes for sure that somehow you were denying the Savior himself but yet we know by studying history of the LDS church that a lot of times. Their leaders made comments that modern Mormons would say that's not in harmony with what they think God would have taught or or wanted his people to believe. So if you disagreed with those leaders you really weren't betraying the Savior at all, but yet Harold B. Lee is making that distinction here, he also said a couple of pages prior to this that people apostatized due to ignorance or sin in nine cases out of 10 I say in every case those who apostatized from this church do it from one of two reasons. Either because of their ignorance of the doctrine or because of their sinfulness and falling away from truth Bill, how many times have we talked to former Latter Day Saints and the second one for sure that they are being accused that they must have done something wrong.

Or maybe somebody hurt them is one he does not list but those seem to be very common reasons that people assume somebody has left the one true church.

I'm not saying that there have not been people who have left for these two reasons, I think the odds are that there probably have been people who have left for those reasons, but to make this kind of a condescending statement I think is an insult to the many Latter Day Saints who suffered in making their decision to leave the church. You and I have talked to numerous former Mormons who tell us the story, sometimes through tears of how they had to make a decision to leave a church that their family was so attached to knowing that it was going to have repercussions that would be harmful to their family because of the pressure that they would be getting from loved ones after the decision for them to leave. Do you think many Latter Day Saints in the 21st century are leaving that what they have always known as the quote unquote one true church. As I mentioned before, do to their ignorance of the doctrine know there's always going to be an exception to the rule that I think that in most cases it's because they're very familiar with the doctrine and the doctrine bothers them. They look into their history and they see some of the things.

For instance look at some of the things that Brigham Young taught. I think a lot of the things he said were just flat-out silly but yet at the time when he taught those things you are expected to believe it because he is the living prophet now. The excuse that Mormons will make today is when yeah but Brigham Young is not the living prophet. Now, as if somehow the truth is that he was allegedly teaching back then or not truths today. The problem with that argument is he was the living prophet at the time he was saying these things and people were expected to believe he was telling them the truth. When we know now. He wasn't even close to the truth. I mean, let's take a look at some of the issues we hear regularly of reasons why people leave book of Mormon. The problems with that that Joseph Smith used a seer stone to translate the book of Mormon. The first vision in all different accounts. We got the book of Abraham and his problem. We've got Joseph Smith and his polygamist ways. A lot of people did not know that Joseph Smith was married to more than 30 women, which has been admitted by the church in the gospel topics, essays, and I mentioned that the essays which were produced by the LDS church from 2013 at 2015 a dozen essays that have caused great consternation to many faithful Latter Day Saints who did not know this information before.

I don't think it's because of ignorance. I think it's because of the knowledge they receive and some of even told us it gone to and received information that help them to leave the church. This is why I think that Harold B.

Lee in making this comment that people apostatized due to ignorance or sin is as I stated a bit condescending folks. You probably have never had conversations with people who have left the church and told you their story. Eric and I have heard many of them there heartbreaking but we thank God for the fact that he has brought people out of the LDS church at that many of these people have found a saving relationship with the Jesus of the New Testament.

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