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April 23, 2020 9:13 pm
.1 Mormonism examined the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints 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 so glad to be with us for this edition of viewpoint on Mormonism. I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM we continue to go through many of the books that were given away as Christmas gifts.
Between the years 1981 and 2012 by the first presidency to various general authorities in the church as well as too many employees of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The reason were going through these boxes because we figure if the first presidency trust these books enough to give them away as a gift and what is inside those books probably should be believed by Latter Day Saints or at least was believed by the first presidency that gave them away in the first place. Today we're going to look at the subject of Joseph Smith and what some of these books had to say about the founding prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
The first book is teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith and the founder Joseph Smith, page 304. He said I am like a huge rough Stone rolling down from a high mountain, and the only polishing I get is when some corner gets rubbed off by coming in contact with something else striking with accelerated force against religious bigotry priest craft lawyer craft Dr. craft line editors suborned judges and jurors in the authority of perjured executives back by mobs, blasphemers, licentious and corrupt men and women, all hell, knocking off a corner here in a corner. There thus I will become a smooth and polished shaft in the quiver of the Almighty who will give me dominion over all and every one of them when their refuge of lies shall fail in their hiding place shall be destroyed. While these smooth polished stones with which I come in contact become marred this claimant eloquent way of saying it. I would think. But let me ask you this, Eric. The fool's profits ever admit that they are the ones that are telling the truth that maybe they in fact are.
Profits of course not.
So obviously you have to make your critics look like they are Provera caterers. I might mention here he uses the phrase rough Stone rolling that is the title of a book written by Morgan historian Richard L. Bushman, and I've often encourage people if they want to give a book to a Latter Day Saints who was struggling with their faith, but not quite to the point of reading a book of how the LDS church instead of by someone who was a member of the church.
I would highly recommend Richard L. Bushman's book rough Stone rolling. I think he's probably much more candid in the history of early Mormonism than some Mormon historians and I found it to be a very interesting read myself in that same book teaches of the prophet Joseph Smith, page 363.
Joseph Smith said God made Aaron to be the mouthpiece for the children of Israel, and he will make me be God to you in his stead and the elders to be mouth for me and if you don't like it you must not, but I've always found that statement to be quite interesting to him if you don't like it, you must lump it. And I've used this expression, the forest is difficult for me to imagine someone like the prophet Isaiah, our prophet Ezekiel, getting up there if you don't like it, you must lump it was. Those were the words of Joseph Smith and that was in the book teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, which was given as a Christmas gift by the first presidency in 1991 and in that same book that we could give additional quote where I can get them all here, but would you say that Joseph Smith had humility, or did he have a lot of pride. All I would say most definitely that Joseph Smith was a prideful man. I've heard some apologist for Joseph Smith try to give the impression that he was a very humble man but hardly hardly when you look at some of the statements that he made during his lifetime, and Joseph Fielding Smith book selections of doctrines of salvation.
On page 379. He talks about Joseph Smith in the first vision, which in 2020. The Mormon church was celebrating the bicentennial of that event. And this is what Joseph Fielding Smith the 10th president of the church said Joseph Smith became an apostle in 1820. Now remember, he's 14 years of age. In the spring of 1820.
After the vision was given to Joseph Smith of the father and the son he stood as the only witness among men who could testify with knowledge that God lives and Jesus Christ is barely his son in this knowledge he became a special witness for Christ and thus an apostle before the priesthood had been restored but yet we find that the details in the first vision don't coincide with the date of 1820 and he is saying in the spring of 1820 and I would argue that that is not a correct date. If you're going to believe the details in Joseph Smith history. He mentions very specifically a religious excitement that was taking place at the time of this vision but yet that religious excitement that he describes did not happen in 1820. It happened in 1824 that we have an article on our website that if people want to go and read, especially if you're Latter Day Saints and you want to know more about the first vision we have a number of good articles but this one I'm referring to is written specifically for Latter Day Saints is called a questions a latter-day St. needs to answer about the first vision you go there by clicking onto MRM.org/1st vision questions with hyphens between first vision questions, let me just give you a couple of the questions why is there no historical evidence, whether oral tradition or written sources that Joseph Smith was ever persecuted for his testimony of the first vision despite the claim that he was in Joseph Smith history chapter 1 verses 21 and following.
There's no early sources to help us to know that this event really took place and that's an excellent point because we don't find any references to the first vision in the early years of the Mormon movement. You don't hear anything about it too much later on.
You would think if this was such an incredible event as Mormons portray it today that there would've been something being said about that in the early years, but know all we have is silence. Another question that is raised in the article.
How do you account for the fact that the local revivals of the Christian churches actually took place in 1824 at 918 20. Wouldn't this mean that the appearance of the angel Moron I to Joseph Smith that supposedly took place in 1823 should be considered the authentic first vision with these questions there are links to articles you can go find out more, but those are a questions and and so since were on that topic. In fact, this citation from Harold B. Lee that was cited in the book, the teachings of Harold Bailey page 373. A Christmas book he said. I believe with all my soul that Satan and very person was there at the Hill Camorra. When Joseph went to get the plates he was there when Joseph prayed in the Grove. He was there on other occasions trying with all his power to destroy the appointment of God's modern profit as he had tried to tempt the master and that was a book that was given as a Christmas gift in the year 2015. This quote comes from the teachings of Howard W.
Hunter, page 189 and he said I am grateful for my members in the church.
My testimony of his divinity hinges upon the simple story of a lad under the trees, kneeling and receiving heavenly visitors. If it is not true.
Mormonism falls if it is true, and I bear witness that it is.
It is one of the greatest events in all history is not the only one that made a comment like that so you can see the importance that Latter Day Saints do place on this first vision.
If that did not happen in the whole church becomes suspect. In fact, it was Gordon B. Hinckley, you admitted that that did not happen there engaged in blasphemy. I've often been intrigued by the use of the word blasphemy. He doesn't say that were just wrong. He says were engaged in blasphemy. Why, because from what Mormons get from that first vision. They know they are denying the biblical teaching, or at least the historical teaching of Christianity that God is Spirit and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth, I think the church pretty much doubled down in April 2020 at the general conference because much of the conference was aimed at exploiting the first vision the bicentennial year and so I I'd listen to the Saturday morning conference sessions. For instance, and pretty much all of it had to do with Joseph Smith and the glory brought to God through Joseph Smith because of God the father in Jesus of appearing to Joseph Smith and yet when you read the account that's found in the pearl of great price. Joseph Smith history chapter 1, you see very clearly without this event as you mention with corn.
Hinckley said there is no Mormonism, there's no need for restoration, and if it's true then you and I bill are in a great apostasy. Now the churches were true, according to God that all of their teachings were an abomination in his sight, so this is a very serious issue. If there's nothing else that we can take away from that. April 2020 general conference.
The strong emphasis on the first vision what was one of the primary messages that comes through this first vision account it is that all the churches are wrong. Their creeds are an abomination and their professors are corrupt. If there's anyone out there thinking that somehow Mormonism and Christianity is compatible then you need to answer this question. What about the main just of the first vision and what Joseph Smith claims he was told by these two personages God the father and Jesus Christ about the condition of the church because if you belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. They're talking about your church, your church is wrong. The creeds that you may hold to the Athanasian Creed, the apostles Creed.
Those creeds are an abomination in God's sight and their professors. The pastors of those churches are all corrupt. According to the statements given by these alleged two personages in that first vision and you're exactly right on that bill and I like mentioned before, I really think at the April 2020 conference a double down. They came up with the proclamation and the proclamation was called this the restoration of the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. A bicentennial proclamation to the world and this is only the six proclamation that has ever been issued in the history of the church and given the years 1841 that was for church members only 1845 1865, 1980. That was 150th anniversary of the church's founding and then 1995. The proclamation that dealt with the traditional family.
They haven't had one of these in 25 years they come out with this and what is it, do it talks about the restoration. The first vision and the importance of Joseph Smith.
This is what this church is centered around, and I think if you're a Christian out there who thinks that Mormonism is just another denomination of the historic Christian church is not true. They very much are proclaiming in this proclamation that there was a need for the restoration and you cannot have the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ outside the bounds of the LDS church bill if anyone out there would like to help our radio ministry. We have a special offer they might like to consider for a generous gift of any size organist and you two electronic copies of documents that we have prepared.
Number one is bills in their own words. It's a comp violation of LDS leader citations close to 400 pages in length, and you're also going to receive a comp violation" of these Christmas books that we've used in the first month of this series. All you need to do is go to MRM.org go to the donate button on the right side of the homepage and then put in your amount. In the add a note section put the letters PDF and then provide your radio station call letters if you listen to podcast but your city and state. That information will help us immensely and we will send you electronic copies of these two documents in the next week. Thank you for listening. If you would like more information regarding his research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website at www.mrm.org you can request a free newsletter Mormonism research. We hope you will join us again as we look at another viewpoint is answering Mormons questions by Bill McKeever and Jerry Johnson deals with 36 commonly asked questions by your LDS friends and neighbors.
It's a great resource for Christians who want to share their faith with friends and loved ones. Be sure to pick Your copy today that your favorite Christian bookstore