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October 2, 2020 11:54 am
Unprepared to engage Mormon missionaries when they knock on your door.
Perhaps the book Mormonism 101 will help Mormonism 101. Published by Baker at your favorite Christian bookstore .1 examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a 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. So glad you could be with us for this edition of 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 yesterday. We introduce the community of Christ as a part of our series looking at a number of the smaller groups of I guess you could say Latter Day Saints. Within this restoration movement showing that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints even though it may be the largest and probably the most powerful of all these types of churches. They're not the only one who claims Joseph Smith to be their head. A lot of these other churches also claimed that they more closely represent the restored church that they feel Joseph Smith was called to bring back to the earth after what they call it a great apostasy now in yesterday show I was mentioning how Joseph Smith did not have a real game plan as to who his successor would be and so there was some confusion. This organization had for much of its history. Follow the pattern of having as its leader, a descendent of Joseph Smith himself. So the first president of this organization was Joseph Smith the third, a son of Joseph and Emma Smith now in 1852 Emma Smith helped organize what came to be known as the new organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and Joseph Smith the third. Her son agreed to be the church leader, but he did not become church leader right away because he was still fairly young selves some years had to go by before he felt confident to become the leader of this church but he eventually becomes the first president of this group in 1860 April 6, 1860. We often emphasize the fact that April 6 is always an important date in Mormon history. They found the reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and is Eric mentioned also.
Yesterday they eventually change that name to the community of Christ.
But let's talk a little bit about Joseph Smith the third Eric there is a publication that was put together called the true Latter Day Saints Herald and this came out in 1860. Now it's called, simply, the Herald, but I find that title interesting, the true Latter Day Saints Herald is it emphasizing that the Herald is what's true, the only true or is it Latter Day Saints movement that they ascribed themselves to because they don't really hold to the position that they are the only true church on earth, at least not now. But in the early years that wasn't really quite case, I think you bring out a good point and remember the name of the church originally was the reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and the LDS church had that name without the reorganized on it.
So in a sense, it seems like that magazine was purposely named to maybe dig at the the Utah church and in fact they did not get along at all.
They had many disagreements, and in 1881 Joseph Smith the third moves the church administrative offices and the printing presses called Harold publishing house and that still around today and he moves it to Iowa out of all places and so he moves he moves away and yet at the same time, many of the members start to return to Independence, Missouri. That's where his father Joseph Smith had dedicated a plot of land in 1831 for a future temple.
And so in 1888 the church builds what's called the stone church and then the leaders tried to get the temple lot and there was a church there already.
That said no you can't have it they took it to the court of law and they ended up losing their case because they believed they were the rightful owners.
Since Joseph Smith was the relative of Joseph Smith the third of the court did not see it the same way right in that court case was between themselves and as you mentioned the temple lot group, which is known also as the Hendrick kites, Joseph Smith, the third disagreed with many of his father's later teachings and among those that he disagreed with included baptism for the dad he did not believe the book of Abraham should be considered.
Scripture did not believe in eternal progression families being together forever did not believe in the plurality of gods. He said these were not the teachings of his father or possibly that they were not interpreted correctly but one thing that he disagreed with Brigham Young on as well.
Was polygamy. He went to the western United States. Joseph Smith the third met with women who told him that they were married to his father, but because his mother Emma insisted that her husband never married any of the other women. Officially he adopted her position and she held that position until she died, and at the end of his own life. He said he was not quote unquote positive nor sure if his father had practice polygamy. He said if the rumors were true, then his father's actions were wrong and it wasn't until many years later in 1983 that an article commissioned by the first presidency to investigate the origin of polygamy, whether that was Joseph Smith and Brigham Young Richard Howard wrote an article 1983 called our LDS response to Mormon polygamy, a preliminary analysis and he concluded that Smith was the originator of plural marriage. However, that contradicted the official church position at that time and so what they did is heavily edited his report and Howard said water down the conclusion, it seems, from all the documents that are available and even the testimony of those who claim to be married to Joseph Smith that would be pretty hard job to prove that polygamy was, not a part of Mormonism in the early years, perhaps because it was so secret in the early years, but in 1852. The church in Utah makes it very public. They came out with in a conference announcing it publicly, and Orson Pratt was the one who was given the quote" honor. You might say, from Brigham Young to make that announcement so it definitely was a part of Mormonism publicly.
From 1850 to 1, but to say that it was never practice. I just look back at all the accusations that were being made while Joseph Smith was alive.
I mean take for instance the novel expositor the newspaper that some of the dissidents former loyal people to Joseph Smith were involved in that newspaper exposing his plural marriages. Even though Joseph Smith lied about it afterwards. Still, people knew about this and it's kind of difficult, at least in my opinion, for anybody to say all know they didn't do that at all. And so for Joseph Smith the third to hold that position tends to tell me that his loyalties to his mother outweighed loyalties to the facts bill. It's interesting because the church commissioned that to be done.
That report and yet they water down the conclusion but at least they had the honesty to try to find that out. Even though they may not have given the complete can conclusion to its people. But it wasn't until 2014 2015 that the LDS church was honest with its membership because we know for a fact, many Latter Day Saints did not think that Joseph Smith had multiple wives until the church came out with several articles in the church gospel topic essay section in his will on its website. You can look it up today and that's where they admit that Joseph Smith had between 30 and 40 wise. But before then Latter Day Saints also did not know you know that's a great point because the right many Latter Day Saints until that gospel topic. Leslie came out were arguing the same position you might say that the community of Christ was arguing they may have readily agreed. Brigham Young had many wise, but when it came to Joseph Smith. We found personally in talking to many Latter Day Saints. During that time. They would deny that Smith had more than one wife, Joseph Smith, the third dies in 1914. His son Frederick takes over and becomes a president in 1915, and something that's really important. I think the most important thing you can remember about Frederick Smith. Is he taught a social gospel and emphasize the importance of providing for people's physical needs as well as their spiritual needs and that theme 100 years later is still true today because this church is a guy said yesterday. It's very much like a liberal Protestant church are mainline denomination where it holds to a lot of social issues that your more conservative evangelical churches are not going to hold and so this gets introduced with Frederick Smith and then in 1846 Joseph Smith, the third son, Israel succeeds his brother and and during that time, the church mainly remains a North American religion but they do have a few thousand members in the British Isles, Europe, Australia, South Pacific, and then in 1958. He dies W. Wallace Smith takes over. He's another son of Joseph Smith. The third and he takes over the presidency and during the 1960s they really go big on missions, they go to countries like Japan, Korea, Brazil, Nigeria, Argentina, the Philippines and Honduras. He retired in 1976 and then gave it to Wallace B.
Smith, you mentioned Wallace B. Smith yesterday Bill.
He still living he was born in 1929 but he gets the rains and he's the last Smith to be able to hold the office of president as a Smith and then during his lifetime he introduces a number of reforms listen to some of the things that he does. He allows women to be ordained in the in the priesthood and they're allowed to have ministry roles they make communion available to those in other denominations before then. They did not. Now they do and they very much became involved in an ecumenical idea, such as building bridges with other faith communities, and so they allowed other churches to to kind of co-mingle with them and then in 1984 he receives a revelation to build a spiral shaped Temple as well as allowing women to hold the priesthood, which before then had only been available to men and in 1994. The church's temple was dedicated across the street from Temple lot in Independence and we have, as you mentioned yesterday, Bill, and in that templates open for tourism. If you'd like to go in and see it what's being done and that temple is not similar at all to what the LDS church is doing in its temples. In 1996. Wallace, who only has three girls. He has no sons. He names W Grant McMurray to be his successor. This seems to cause somewhat of a problem for some of the members who would, I guess you could say, prided themselves in the fact that they could trace their line back to Joseph Smith Junior, who founded this movement so people are probably going to have some doubts and how about this, there's no way that will always be Smith could hand it over to another male. So now grandma Murray takes over as the president of the church changes its name from the reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to the community of Christ in 2001 and the reason they change it. They said was to better articulate our mission to proclaim Jesus Christ and proclaim communities of joy, hope, love and peace. McMurray resigns in 2004, and he's replaced by the current president, Steven M. Veazey in 2005 and that's where he is today. Tomorrow we will continue looking at the community of Christ and some of the similarities as well as differences with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Thank you for listening. If you would like more information regarding his research ministry.
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