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September 18, 2020 2:29 pm
Answering Mormons questions by Bill McKeever and Eric 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, the 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 continue our series looking at some of the smaller groups of the restoration movement this week we've been looking at a group called the church of Christ with the Elijah message. And as we mentioned this week it was founded by a man by the name of Otto setting. Now that name probably doesn't mean a whole lot to you.
In fact, a lot of the names that we may be mentioning in the series might be very unfamiliar to you, but one thing to keep in mind a lot of the groups that we are talking about. They all look to Joseph Smith as basically being there founder the how much they emphasize Joseph Smith and their modern teachings that remains to be seen, but certainly these groups are connected in that way you could say that this is Joseph Smith's legacy and as we mentioned earlier this week and we also mentioned last week as well. We began this series. Many times Mormons will criticize Christians because there are so many quote unquote denominations within Christianity, as if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only true church that existed which, in their mind. That's what they think. However, what many Latter Day Saints might not even be familiar with is the fact there have been dozens of splinter group since Joseph Smith founded his church in 1830. This is one of those groups and though you may not ever come in contact with an individual who was a member of this organization.
It would not be bad for you in a conversation to bring up the fact to Latter Day Saints.
Should they use that as an argument to say luck. You also in your movement have numerous groups or denominations. If you will. So if you're going to use that as an argument against Christianity. Then you have to also use it as an argument against the existence of your church as well and they can certainly say, well, where the largest while yes you are at 16 million you well beat out all of the other groups combine, but just because you largest is that necessarily make you true. Yes, bring out these other groups and we have these articles to go to MRM.org/splinter groups with the hyphen in between.
We have links to the seven different groups that I research I try to pick the seven largest. I've given you a lot of information. Become familiar with some of these groups so that you might be able to say what about the church of Christ with the Eliza message.
They claim that they have truth even though their small, how do you know that they are not the true followers of Joseph Smith, and I think that would be a fair question well fitting. As I mentioned before, was born in 1871.
He died in 1933 and like many other leaders of these movements. They are not really educated in the way of theology.
Otto fitting was actually a realtor and he was originally baptized into the reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which has now come to be known as the community of Christ. Now, after he was baptized in that group. In 1991 he became a priesthood holder in 1899, but he leaves the ER LDS organization in 1925 and he joins the Church of Christ Temple lot group. This is the group that fought for the ownership of the property. They feel Joseph Smith dedicated for a temple to be built in the future.
This man, Otto, fatting within a year he became an apostle of the Church of Christ temple. I wonder he must've had a lot of charisma to be able to do this, you would think so anyway he joins the Church of Christ temple lot is ordained as you said, as an apostle. The following year. Then on February 7, 1927 he claimed that he was visited by John the Baptist, who told him that this church should begin construction of a temple on the Temple lot property that was across the street from the property owned by the community of Christ will now you have to understand, back then it was known as the reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and that it was Joseph Smith himself, as they believe, who in 1831 prophesied that a temple was going to be built on this very spot that we might mention there is no building on this lot other then the temple lot church in the very corner. That structure is there it from what I remember.
It burned down at one time it was rebuilt, but the lot itself does not have a temple to this very day and then what happens is he ends up getting these messages published in a magazine that they had called the Zions advocate and even had a groundbreaking ceremony.
It was done on April 6, 1929, which is 99 years after the church was founded so is done specifically on April 6 for purpose I asked in an earlier broadcast.
Why did this organization get founded on April 8, 1930. Why not April 6 we will know the answer to that. Folks, but it would seem to carry on with this pattern of April 6. Being a special day among the restoration movement.
Otto fitting chose to instead have it founded on April 8, 1930, not April 6 so we have April 6 groundbreaking that takes place. They say this building is gonna take seven years to build. John the Baptist gets involved till he ends up saying that the markers should be moved 10 feet to the east and apparently they follow that.
So, fatting has a lot of control but makes a mistake he had 11 messages and that he came up with the 12th one that was received on July 18, 1929, just a few months after the groundbreaking ceremony of this Temple and verse four.
John the Baptist commanded that the church leaders were to get rebaptized for their unfaithfulness as directed from the word of the Lord listen to verse four behold, the Lord has rejected all creeds and factors, the men who have gone away from the word of the Lord and it become an abomination in the sight therefore let those who come to the Church of Christ, be baptized, that they may rid themselves of the traditions and sins of men preparing themselves that they may be fit and worthy for the spirit and power of the Holy Ghost and has a greater power shall come, that they shall be ready to receive it with joy.
What does John the Baptist tell Otto fatting these leaders have been unfaithful. They need to get rebaptized. Is this a power play. Do you think Bill that Otto fitting is making certainly sounds like it's a power play but a message like that is probably not going to sit very well with your colleagues. Reminds me of when 70 George P Lee got up and rebuked his fellow colleagues as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and he was promptly excommunicated afterwards.
Like you say he has 11 messages is doing really well. Everybody's believing him. It comes out with message number 12 should've stopped with message number 11 what is it say in verse eight of this message.
Verse eight says remember the priesthood, was not and will not be taken from the earth since I conferred it on Joseph Smith. But the greater power of the priesthood has been withheld because of the transgression of those who have been entrusted with their wet always have to put the blame on someone else. Joseph Smith was notorious for doing that. So were seen in this pattern also being followed in this group as well and then he's that rejected by the temple lot church leaders for good reason because they didn't like what he had to say.
So he leaves the church in October 2029 and in fact he takes a lot of the membership with him. So this was devastating to the Church of Christ temple lot close to half of the church members were taken including several of the church as apostles, and then on April 8. As you mentioned in 1930 he founds the Church of Christ with the Eliza message and he continues to receive these messages from John the Baptist in these messages are very similar to Joseph Smith's doctrine and covenants it's written in King James kind of English and its John the Baptist revealing what Jesus wants him to know and he writes down these words, the final communication was given on January 28, 1933.
This is number 30 and fatting quotes God in verse two is saying I have given the plans for the temple, but my people are not worthy or cannot enter therein. Does that sound familiar. Bill and then verse three goes on to say, thus says the Lord. I will not leave my people if they will keep my commandments and serve me as I have instructed you. Yay my spirit touches the hearts of many who have no understanding of my law. I have heard the prayers of my people and all is in my hands in the last part of verse three sounds informal and it's kind of, and note that's written therein.
It says at this juncture, the messenger left at John the Baptist he leaves.
He said he would be back and spare me a little longer then it says he returned and gave what follows with another six verses added and this is what he says at the very end of this final message he gets to deliver. This was presented to me by the messenger and I read it as a messenger on role the role which he had shown me the previous night on which was written the word of the Lord and actually have a testimony of four witnesses to this 30th message and it they they said that it was delivered by the messenger from God. They had notarized statements from a notary public, and it was WR Baxter, Roy E.
Fatting Jenny and fatting, and Elizabeth Mills after he gives his last message.
The man dies and then a new leader comes in the power man by the name of William a Draves, but Draves doesn't come into power immediately. It doesn't seem like this organization has a structure set up for how they get a successor like the LDS church as today's note to take four years after fittings death. When William a Draves would then become the leader of this movement, just like fatting Draves was a former RLD S member. He had also joined the LDS church and he lived in nuclear Colorado and in October 1937 he claimed the very same John the Baptist appeared to him.
This is something that the main leader is going to get he's going to get these direct revelations from John the Baptist telling the leader what Jesus wants them to know in the preface to the vision that he received. This is how Draves describes a scene I had awakened several times in the night went back to sleep. Praying, I awaken with a start hearing footsteps on the ground floor. I raised up in bed and looking toward the staircase, I noticed a light coming or beginning to shine up the stairway. I was somewhat astonished. To think someone would be walking in my house when I knew I had locked the doors. Immediately I saw was a man dressed in a white robe, and with no light in his hand and as I had suppose a light seem to radiate from him lighting the whole room while immediately around him. It was much brighter.
His beard was radiant. His eyes which shone like neon light. Though piercing and bright were gentle and pleasant. His looks kind.
I was somewhat afraid but a smile helped drive away my fear. I thought perhaps it may be an angel of God when he appeared in the top of the stair.
He seemed to float quickly to my bedside. I trembled and pulled the covers to my chest while sitting up in bed almost Bill, this sounds like the, the Ebenezer Scrooge story. If nothing else, it sounds pretty familiar.
As far as Joseph Smith's experience with the angel Moron I appearing in his room tomorrow were going to continue looking at this organization the Church of Christ with the Elijah message. Thank you for listening. If you would like more information regarding this research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website www.mrm.org you can request our free newsletter research. We hope you will join us again as we look at another viewpoint