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May 30, 2020 3:20 pm
.1 examines 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. Thank you Brian Mahon for that introduction welcome to this edition of viewpoint on Mormonism.
I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM today we continue looking at a book that was edited by Robert and Susan McIntosh, a book titled the teachings of George Albert Smith who was the eighth president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in the year 2000 the first presidency gave this book as a Christmas gift to other general authorities in the church as well as several employees of the church.
But before we dive into our final topics on this blog, Eric, we have an offer for listeners and could you tell the people about that. If you would like to help our radio ministry out. We have a special offer that you might like to consider for a generous gift of any size.
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We thank you in advance for your help. At this time, the teachings of George Albert Smith the eighth president of the church were going to look at a topic having to do with the Joseph Smith translation or the inspired version. What is a say on page 57, Eric, and yet the larger proportion of this world do not now know the contents of the Bible. Most of those who have read it and are familiar more or less with its text do not know.
After all these years how to interpret the Lord has given to us the power to interpret it. He gave to the prophet Joseph Smith the privilege of re-translating it. If I may use that term with look at what he says.
And yet the larger proportion of this world do not now know the contents of the Bible. I don't mean to offend any latter-day Saints. It might be listening to the show but can I just be upfront and say in my conversations with many members of the LDS church I have found that a large proportion of members of the LDS church do not know the contents of the Bible. How many times have I brought something up from the Scripture that I would say is something that was pretty basic and the LDS person I'm talking to is never read this before have never looked at a lot of these passages ardent at the bit of arson were my mentors admit I remember telling me the story. One time when she was talking to a latter-day St. woman and she quoted something from the book of Hebrews and the lady she was talking to said to her will.
I don't read the Old Testament very much.
Now of course hearing that you would think she probably doesn't read the New Testament very much since that's where the book of Hebrews is located that many times in my experience in talking with Mormons. They seem to be very unfamiliar with pertinent Bible passages that I think would certainly show them that what they tend to believe by their latter-day revelation is not in conformity with what the New Testament teaches, we know that reading the Bible was very powerful in change in the life of Michael Wilder who was a missionary back in 2005 in Florida and was challenged by a pastor to read the Bible and he never really read the Bible as a little child would what he was asked to do by the pastor and so he did so it changes life forever. I'm gonna tell you that I have talked to missionaries who haven't even read the book of Mormon before they went out of their mission, let alone the Bible, the book of Mormon seems to be about more often read cover to cover than the Bible and I'm going to say if you're latter-day St., and have not read the Bible, we highly suggest that you would let me point out something else that he says in this paragraph Eric when he talks about the Lord has given to us the power to interpret it. Speaking of the Bible. We've been saying that all along. We oftentimes will cite something that a Mormon leader has said regarding a certain Bible passage and many times they get it wrong they do not properly exegete the passage even though they would insist in George Albert Smith is insisting on it here that the Lord has given to us the power to interpret the Bible.
Now he goes on to say he gave to the prophet Joseph Smith the privilege of re-translating that, if I may use that term. That's an interesting thing to say because we've often insisted that the Joseph Smith translation is not really a translation that all it almost appears as if George Albert Smith recognizes that same fact that we have recognize because what Joseph Smith did with his Joseph Smith translation quote unquote is merely open up a Bible. He just started altering the passages where ever he saw it fit as a hobby. He learned some Hebrew. We have no indication that he knew any coin, a Greek that were used in the old and new Testaments. And so it can't be a translation if you're not taking it from the. The best manuscripts that we have available to us as far as inspired version of the Joseph Smith translation that you have referred to if that really is something that God gave to him and why isn't the church using it today. You would think they should know. He also talks about church membership and how it does not guarantee a place in the celestial kingdom. What is he say about that. What a privilege it is to worship the Lord and to do it in the way he has indicated there are some people who are members of the church. Their names are on the record and they have an idea that that is all that is necessary, but the time will come when they will have to face their record and their admission into the celestial kingdom will be conditioned upon the way they have observed the advice of our heavenly father right here upon the earth. How grateful we ought to be not to be uncertain as to where we are going now.
I found that fascinating because in that same book on page 97. He says the church does not compel obedience.
What you just read Eric doesn't that sound like he's compelling obedience that just being a member in the church doesn't guarantee you a place in the celestial kingdom. There are things that you have to do you have to obey and that seems to be a theme that's in every single one of these books that were given away as Christmas gifts by the first presidency, but he says the church does not compel obedience.
I am grateful that I belong to a church that does not compel obedience. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints does not coerce the gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of love, intelligence and wonderful guide for our lives. That is what it is for. It is for everybody. Yet we find people who resist the very thing that would make them happy.
They will not live the gospel but seek happiness only in the pleasures of life that will not endure Bill let me ask you a question. The issue of tithing is that coerce stores at optional for members when I've used the word coercion in conjunction with the Mormon doctrine of tithing. I remember getting an email from a Mormon who was pretty upset with me on that. He says will I don't feel coerced and that's fine if you as a latter-day St. or giving to your church and you don't feel like you really have to.
That's certainly your business but I would venture to say that if you were to stop giving your tithing to the church you're going to lose something very special. You're going to lose your temple recommend.
You will not be allowed to go to the temple. If you were not temple worthy. According to the structure of Mormonism. You're also not celestial kingdom worthy. This can have a bad affect because some Latter Day Saints will probably equate the your ability to have a temple recommend as qualifying for the celestial kingdom that would be a gross error on their part just because of Mormon has a temple recommend does not mean that they are worthy for exultation. That's a kind of a long answer for what I'm about to say.
I do feel that the way the Mormon church is structured when it comes to tithing that that is in fact the type of coercion. If you don't do this you won't get what you seek. You are being. In fact, coerced, you must pay this in order to get the recommend in order to get potential exultation another citation on the celestial kingdom comes on pages 35 and 36 and it says all have an equal opportunity to inherit eternal life. One of the beautiful things to me in the gospel of Jesus Christ is that it brings us all to a common level. It is not necessary for man to be a president of the stake or a member of the quorum of the 12 in order to attain a high place in the celestial kingdom. The humblest member of the church. If he keeps the commandments of God will obtain and exultation just as much, as any other man in the celestial kingdom. The beauty of the gospel of Jesus Christ is that it makes us all equal in as far as we keep the commandments of the Lord in as far as we observed to keep the laws of the church.
We have equal opportunities for exultation billing and essay. The common denominator is obedience to the laws of the church. But wait a minute. We just read from the same book by the same author.
The church does not compel obedience.
What you read most certainly shows that they are compelled to obey. If they hope to receive exultation when he says all have equal opportunity to inherit eternal life. What is eternal life in the context of Mormonism. It celestial exultation. How can you say that this church does not compel obedience and then read a statement such as that it most certainly sounds like it does know what it says. One of the beautiful things to me in the gospel of Jesus Christ is that it brings us all to a common level was one of the criticisms against early Christianity.
Jesus was going out and really insult the estimation of some people picking out the dregs of society and granting them salvation. Of course that's been a trait of Christianity. Since the very beginning so to say. One of the beautiful things to me in the gospel of Jesus Christ. And let's be honest when he says the gospel of Jesus Christ. He's not referring to the gospel that we believe the gospel of Jesus Christ.
He's talking about this restored gospel of Jesus Christ that came through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints or the LDS church. One final quote page 118. He writes grave consequences await those who purposely do not have children, how will those feel who fail to obey that first great command when they stand in the presence of the Creator. How can they comply with that invitation if they have no children to take to the father.
They must remain childless throughout eternity. This statement kind of puzzles me when he says they must remain childless throughout eternity. But isn't that the whole reason why marriage is supposed to continue on eternal use of the husband and wife will be producing offspring to fill the world that they will inherit for being good Mormons. If this is a requirement in order to become a God. Okay, they're not only going to remain childless throughout eternity. They're not even going to reach exultation. It would seem, does this not sound like Mormons are being compelled to have children, wouldn't they have to be obedient to this doctrine of having children if they hope to reach this exultation, but yet the same George Albert Smith said the church does not compel obedience.
I am grateful that I belong to a church that does not compel obedience folks that just is not true. Thank you for listening.
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