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The Virgin Birth Part 5

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
The Truth Network Radio
December 17, 2020 8:15 pm

The Virgin Birth Part 5

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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December 17, 2020 8:15 pm

What is the difference between the Virgin Birth of Mormonism and the Virgin Birth of Christianity? This is our topic for this week!

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Viewpoint on Mormonism, the 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. What did Mormon Apostle Bruce McConkie teach regarding the incarnation of Jesus Christ? Welcome to this edition of Viewpoint on Mormonism. I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director of Mormonism Research Ministry.

And with me to discuss this topic is Aaron Shafawaloff, my colleague at MRM. Quick recap, the main issues that Mormon leaders have taught that God the Father condescended and had physical sexual relations with Mary in order to conceive Jesus. And this issue today continues to be an issue, although you can't stereotype Mormons as believing it. The first quote we're going to get into is this one made by Bruce McConkie that's found in Mormon Doctrine, page 155. But I might also mention it was also reprinted in the Book of Mormon Gospel Doctrine Teacher's Manual of 1999. So this is a correlated manual which is produced under the auspices of the First Presidency. So we have to assume that the First Presidency, though they may not know it's in there, they should know it's in there. And this is a manual that goes out to members of the LDS Church and it is assumed that they are to believe it to be teaching truth.

It's for college students, high school students. The condescension of God, meaning the Father, consists in the fact that he became the personal and literal father of a mortal offspring born of mortal woman. And this kind of goes along with some of the other statements that we have been discussing as well.

But in Mormon Doctrine, page 547, it says Christ was begotten by an immortal father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers. Any comment on that, Aaron? I crit myself earlier, by the way. That's for just general teaching.

That's not just for high school. Okay. Okay. Well, the same way that they were at Jesus was begotten in the same way that all other children are begotten. What's the normal, natural, commonly understood way that children are begotten? It's through copulation.

It's through intercourse. I mean, to be blunt. One of the reasons why this, an additional reason why this is important to us is that Mormon apologists say, well, maybe what these Mormon leaders meant was artificial human insemination. And of course, it's absurd to think that a person like Brigham Young would be thinking that when he made his comments.

Or Pratt or Talmadge, or I think, or even McConkie here. Yeah, I would agree, because McConkie goes on to make it very clear what he's talking about. Another statement by Bruce McConkie, and Christ was born into the world as the literal son of this holy being. He was born in the same personal, real, and literal sense that any mortal man is born to a mortal father. There is nothing figurative about his paternity.

He was begotten, conceived, and born in the normal and natural course of events for he is the son of God. And that designation means what it says. This is in Mormon doctrine page 742.

The bluntness and the strength of his language is really important. One thing we should point out is that some Mormons say, well, maybe what these leaders meant was that it's some sort of spiritual equivalent to a physical intercourse. Well, McConkie here says, no, not figurative. It's very literal. It's the natural course of events.

Good point. In his book, Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, Volume 1, page 144, McConkie says, Jesus was begotten by his father as literally as he was conceived by his mother. Literally. Again, you just mentioned how this isn't figurative. This is supposed to be understood to be literal.

In the Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, Volume 3, page 141, McConkie says begotten means begotten. Oh no, it means it's artificial dissemination. Well that's how some would want us to believe, right? This is what Farron Farms wants us to believe.

Yeah. And see, this is what's so frustrating with dealing with some of these apologists about this issue because they want to completely ignore the actual words that were used by the people that are doing the speaking here. They want to deconstruct what they've actually said to give the impression that they really weren't saying what we think they said or know they said. And if you're a Latter-day Saint listening, you're going to have to deal with these statements. This is one of your apostles. Now if you're going to say that McConkie was out to lunch, well then what other Mormon apostles are out to lunch?

Why should we take him seriously if you don't? Exactly. Begotten means begotten. Begotten means begotten. It means Christ's mortal body was procreated by an eternal sire. It means God is the Father of Christ after the manner of the flesh. And that phrase, after the manner of the flesh, is a distinguishing phrase that separates Jesus' incarnation from all the rest.

God the Father actually had a personal investment in this incarnation of Jesus, one that he does not have with the rest of humankind. So that's a common expression that you hear when they're referring to Jesus' birth and conception. We find also in the Promised Messiah, page 466, and we've discussed this in a past broadcast, how McConkie actually redefines what a virgin birth really is. Yeah, so next time a Mormon neighbor or a Mormon spokesman says, we believe in the virgin birth, you probably should probe deeper here, ask him follow-up questions because of what Bill's about to read.

Because what he's going to do is very typical. He's going to use an expression that is familiar with most people, especially Christian people dealing with this issue, but he's going to demonstrate that he has redefined this. So he can still use the phrase, but it doesn't necessarily mean he means it the same way that you and I would understand it. He says this on page 466 of the Promised Messiah. For our present purposes, suffice it to say that our Lord was born of a virgin, which is fitting and proper, and also natural, since the father of the child was an immortal being.

Right. You know, what's interesting is that McConkie feels the need to define virgin as never having had relations with a mortal man. But if McConkie, by all these statements, really did somehow mean that the father exercised some sort of human artificial insemination, and if he really did believe the father never had relations with Mary, then he could have easily extended his definition of virgin to encompass never had relations with an immortal man. Getting back to something you said earlier, Aaron, about this way of spiritualizing it or giving it a whole different kind of connotation, McConkie denies this. He says there is no need to spiritualize away the plain meaning of the scriptures. There is nothing figurative or hidden or beyond comprehension in our Lord's coming into mortality. He is the Son of God in the same sense and way that we are the sons of mortal fathers.

It is just that simple. Christ was born of Mary. He is the Son of God, the only begotten of the Father. That's found in Promised Messiah, page 468. Another comment by Bruce McConkie, and this is found in The Mortal Messiah, volume 1, page 314. It's also found in the Book of Mormon Seminary Student Study Guide, 2000, page 22. And it's also found in the Doctoral Commentary on the Book of Mormon, volume 1, page 78, which was co-authored by Bruce McConkie's son, Joseph Fielding McConkie, and Robert Millet, who is a BYU professor, Mormon apologist.

This is what it says. To condescend is literally to go down among. The condescension of God lies in the fact that he, an exalted being, steps down from his eternal throne to become the father of a mortal son, a son born, again, using the phrase, after the manner of the flesh. So he's not remotely performing some sort of artificial insemination.

No. He's condescending, he's going into the very presence of Mary, and Jesus is being conceived after the manner of the flesh, like McConkie said earlier, in a non-figurative, literal, natural course of events. And again, if you haven't caught our previous broadcasts on this, we keep harping on this artificial insemination thing, because we have actually heard Mormons use that as a kind of rebuttal to soften what these guys are actually saying, to make it sound like it could not have been an actual sex act, but it could have been done in another means.

And certainly what we're seeing here is, no, that cannot be the case. That's not a good rebuttal for a Mormon to give. Going on, McConkie in his book The Mortal Messiah, volume 1, page 314-315, he says this, without overstepping the bounds of propriety by saying more than is appropriate, let us say this, God the Almighty, who once dwelt on an earth of his own, and has now ascended the throne of eternal power to reign in everlasting glory, who has a glorified and exalted body, a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's, who reigns in equity and justice over the endless billions of his spirit children who inhabit the worlds without number that roll into being at his word. God the Almighty, who is infinite and eternal, elects in his fathomless wisdom to beget a son, an only son, the only begotten in the flesh. God, who is infinite and immortal, condescends to step down from his throne to join with, who is finite and mortal in bringing forth after the manner of the flesh, the mortal Messiah. And with all due respect to our Mormon listeners, put the dots together here.

Connect the dots. You believe your God is with body, parts, and passions, and that he condescended. Well, that's what your leaders have taught anyway. Don't want to stereotype the listeners as believing this, but leaders have taught that Jesus was conceived, I mean, essentially with the body, parts, and passions of the Father. In fact, they mock the concept of a God who does not have body, parts, and passions. And they mock the idea that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Ghost, overshadowing Mary, and that somehow is mocked as though that would be somehow a sufficient explanation of what actually happened.

Now, you've probably heard Aaron as I have. Well, that's Bruce McConkie, you know, I mean, and McConkie, I think, after he died, I remember, and I've used this expression, it seemed like that after McConkie died, his body was barely room temperature before there were some Mormons that were starting to distance themselves from his teachings. They didn't do it while he was alive.

But once he's dead, it's all of a sudden, that's just Bruce McConkie's opinion. Well, when you claim to be an apostle, you're held to a higher degree of accountability. And Jesus said, watch out for false prophets, you'll know them by their fruits. If you're refusing to consider McConkie's fruits, then you're disobeying Jesus. Also, I would suspect suggest that you might not be exhibiting here love for your fellow members in the LDS Church. Do you care about what they believe? Do you care about the honor of Jesus Christ reflected in the beliefs of your fellow members in the LDS Church, which have been influenced by people like McConkie who claim to be apostles?

Exactly. And I think if you are a Latter-day Saint listening to this, you need to do some serious reflection, because this guy really represents you. And I'm sure he was sustained by the membership while he was alive and maybe by you if you were alive during that time. We look at another viewpoint on Mormonism. In his second letter to the Thessalonians, Paul wrote, Pray for us that the word of the Lord may speed ahead and be honored. We at Mormonism Research Ministry hope you will likewise pray for us that the word will go forth and be glorified. Pray for direction as we seek the Holy Spirit's guidance as to where God wants us to focus our attention. Pray for wisdom that we might have the right words to speak to Latter-day Saints who are struggling with their faith. Pray for the physical and spiritual health of our staff and families. Pray that, as a ministry, we are able to meet the financial obligations that naturally accompanies effective ministries. Pray for opportunities to educate fellow Christians who may not feel confident when sharing their faith with their Mormon friends and loved ones. We hope that you will also pray for the entire body of Christ, that all of us will have a greater love for those who are lost, and that this love will give us a sense of urgency to share the message of grace that sets the captive free.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-14 03:34:58 / 2024-01-14 03:40:35 / 6

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