Don’t Just Say What Everyone Else Says

I’ve noticed that a lot of anti-Mormons fall into the trap of saying the exact same things every other anti-Mormon says. Now, you might say “Well, that’s cause we’re all correct in the same way, and Mormons are wrong in the same way, so why shouldn’t we be saying the same stuff?” That’s all well and good, but I’m just telling you that it makes it harder for you to do your job.

The problem is that when a Mormon meets a new anti-Mormon, and that anti-Mormon says the exact same things the last 10 anti-Mormons have said to that Mormon, the Mormon just rolls his eyes and says “Oh, not again…” You see, the Mormon has already been inoculated against most of the stuff you’ve got to say. Even if you think it’s something new that they haven’t heard, chances are you’re wrong, especially if you’re talking to a Mormon online on a website that focuses on debating points of Mormon doctrine or history.

Some examples of things that make you sound like just another anti-Mormon-bot repeating what every other anti-Mormon says are:

  • There is no archeological evidence for the Book of Mormon.
  • DNA proves the Book of Mormon is false.
  • The Bible proves that the Book of Mormon is false.
  • Joseph Smith was married to young girls.
  • The Bible proves Joseph Smith was not a true prophet.
  • There were no horses or pigs in the Americas before the Spaniards but the Book of Mormon talks about them therefore the Book of Mormon is false.
  • There was no metallurgy in America before the Spaniards but the Book of Mormon talks about it therefore the Book of Mormon is false.
  • There is no geographical evidence for the Book of Mormon.
  • What about those Kinderhook plates?

Any Mormon who has spent even a little time online has already heard these challenges to their faith 10, 20, or 100 times, and they’ve had plenty of time to look at websites like FAIRLDS.org, FAIRMormon.org, Jeff Lindsay’s site, or AskGramps.org where they find answers to all these and other challenges. So they’re ready and waiting for you, and when you bring up one of these points they already know what to say. And if they’re lazy, they’ll just send you to one of those sites and say “Do your own research, I’m tired of repeating myself” and then you get nowhere.

What’s the solution for the anti-Mormon who wants to get some traction? Find something new. Find something they haven’t heard of before. Otherwise you’re just treading the same ground many have walked on before you, and you’re just wasting your time.

Comments

  1. Yes, never mind that these things are true. There is NO archaeological evidence for the Book of Mormon. Joseph Smith was married to young girls. There is no geographical evidence for the BOM. All the sites you listed have absolutely no evidence or fact proving otherwise. Jeff Lindsay's site in particular is a JOKE, it is ALL conjecture as he states so many, many times right on his website. All he has is opinions and "what ifs" and weak excuses. FAIR actually helps you to see how they don't really have any real answers to any of these issues. Maybe it sounds like a "waste of time" to those of you who have closed your minds off to anything that opposes your corporation, but there are those who are out there searching for the truth and accept it. Myself and other ex-mo's are proof that it reaches those who seek truth and are willing to embrace it.

  2. If anyone wants proof just look up the "I'm an ex-Mormon" stories online, you will find many testimonies of people who say going to FAIR and FARMS websites actually helped lead them OUT of the church when they realized they didn't have any real answers…and when they read all the other questions they had never even thought of before! The points above plant seeds and get people to think for themselves and go searching for answers. It tells them truths that the LDS church will never share with its members in meetings. And I am here to bear my testimony that it works for those who are not blinded by fear! And the truth shall set you free.

  3. Leah, there's also no archeological, nor geographical, nor any other sort of proof for the resurrection of Christ, yet you believe it happened. The hole you claim exists in LDS theology is no different than that which exists for Christianity at large, which is why we all speak of faith with regards to our beliefs. You may choose to believe what you believe but it is just that, a choice. You have no objective proof that what you believe is true, nor any objective proof that what Mormons believe is false. We all believe what we choose to believe.

  4. While that is true Joshua, you were advising "anti's" not to use such information you listed above arguing that it was ineffective to reach Mormons. From myself and many other ex-mo's out there I was telling you it IS effective. It led me out of the church!

    Those things ARE true, and they are not openly taught or discussed at church. Also not mentioned above is the destruction of a printing press, the Masonic origins of the temple rites, Smith firing a gun and shooting people in the jail, the Mountain Meadows Massacre, and so many other church history facts that are never discussed or shown in church films. Then someone comes along showing a Mormon these things that they never heard of, and they find out they are true. It helps one to realize they have been manipulated and they lose trust in the church being "true." I find it to be very effective! In fact I have been sharing this info with a family member who is appalled these things were hidden from her knowledge by the church, and is rethinking her devotion to such an institution that would be so duplicitous with its history and would rewrite it to fit their agenda.

    Your argument fails, except for those who have completely shut out any and all possibilities that the church could not be true. For others who are searching for the truth of the church, the knowledge of the above issues is extremely helpful and does lead people out.

    The truth matters and it should always be encouraged, not mocked. The reason "anti's" say this stuff over and over again is because its the TRUTH! And every member deserves to know it and do what they want with the information. It is their right to know, and the church doesn't share it with them. Somebody should.

    • Talking about those things might be effective with those who have never had much of a testimony in the first place, but for those of us who know church history and have received a witness of the spirit these things have little or no effect. I didn't know many of these things growing up, but as I learned them I would research the matter and I've always been able to find credible explanations that satisfied me. When I hear the same tired arguments trotted out that have been brought up for 150 years, as the Church had continued to grow, I have to roll my eyes a bit.

  5. How did you deal with the realization that the church does not talk about/discuss/reveal any of the "bad" parts of its history with its members? The church video about JS is such a white washed version of the truth and they leave out anything that could be damning to his reputation..I was taught growing up that this constitutes a "lie by omission." You never had feelings of betrayal or questioned why they are deceptive? Why the need to put out only the positive aspects of the church, if its true couldn't it with stand the truth being examined? The leaders feel the need to not reveal anything negative out of fear of the loss of membership which leads to the loss of tithing dollars. Do you have another possible valid reason for their behavior that helps you sleep at night?

    Answers that satisfy you were weak conjecture to me, so it does go to show that it comes down to we believe what we want to believe. I could not put my trust or faith in an organization that has been duplicitous with me, and in the LDS corporation you DO have to put your faith in its leaders and the organization as well as God. You have to trust what they tell you is true, or the whole thing crumbles…

  6. "How did you deal with the realization that the church does not talk about/discuss/reveal any of the “bad” parts of its history with its members?"

    The answer to this Leah is that the church desires to spend the most time it can on teaching about Jesus Christ. When you have the understanding that Satan is wielding all his power in turning "good" to "bad" and "bad" to "good" you know that your choice of words is very important. Rather than focus on historical occurances that do not matter to our personal testimonies of Jesus Christ we focus on the here and now and how we can follow our Savior and stand for what is right in a world filled with fleeting values.

    When there is time, these things are discussed. I would say I have participated in 5 lessons on the mountain meadows massacre as it gives people a great chance to see where bad choices lead you and reinforces the need for Prophetic guidance. If you are well versed with the massacre you will now that the mormons involved were under great persecution and made a terrible choice to act out against those around them. Unfortunately, the Prophet Brigham Young's counsel on the matter arrived late by horseback and the mormons involved had already acted against the Prophet's guidance.

    Now yes, I can see your point of view and I understand why you feel it has merit. As a child, I often felt betrayed by my mother when I would get the response of, "you're not going to do that because I'm telling you not to, and I'm your mother." I hated this response, because I never wanted to think that my parents knew what was right for me. I always wanted an explanation to why doing what I wanted to was a bad choice."

    Of course, after growing older it is obvious that many times there was not time to explain, or the explanation would not make sense to my young mind as I did not comprehend fully the topic at hand. This is an Eternal principle. Many of the teachings of Christ are progressive, they mean different things to us as we grow in understanding.

    "I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able." (1 Corinthians 3:2)

    "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.

    For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe.

    But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."

    (Hebrews 5:12-14)

    So with this principle in mind, it is easy to reach the conclusion that we can receive too much meat before milk. As we share our knowledge with those on a lower level of understanding, we have to be careful how we present it. Too much meat cannot be digested and too much of a certain principle can be overwhelming if we do not already understand the basic princples upon which it is founded.

    A feeble human mind cannot even come close to understanding the Atonement of Jesus Christ the first time it hears of it. An understanding of Christ's sacrifice has to be built line upon line and precept upon precept, and still we can never fully comprehend His sacrifice in this life. This is why billions of people around the world simply think it is a lie or a joke.

    So that brings us to this:

    "You have to trust what they tell you is true, or the whole thing crumbles…"

    A true statement with minor correction:

    "You have to trust what they tell you [will lead you to truth], or the whole thing crumbles. . ."

    At some point we all have to trust someone in a position of perceived authority. If it were not so there would be no organized religion and no churches. You believed someone in a position of perceived authority when you left the church. Catholics believe in the authority of the pope. Every member of any denomination believes in the perceived authority of their pastor or bishop or sermon giver.

    We all look up to people in this life whom we believe have more knowledge than us (perceived authority). So yes, I look up to those whom I believe Jesus Christ has personally authorized to speak in His name. And I find it hard to believe in the perceived authority from people who fight against the church because they have never claimed such a claim as the Prophet Joseph Smith. No individuals today have stood and said, "Joseph Smith has not seen God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and I know this because I have seen them (or been called by them personally) to tell you elsewise." If that man or woman ever comes forth with that claim, then they have my ear to at least hear what they have to say.

    • I am LDS and this has always bothered me. I think the church needs to be more open about the negative things in our history. There are far too many things in church history that are easier to misunderstand than they are to explain, so the church avoids them entirely. I think it is better to hear about these things in church with the proper perspective. Instead people hear them from their anti-mormon friends or from a website. Then they feel betrayed and leave the church. I know people like this.

  7. "The answer to this Leah is that the church desires to spend the most time it can on teaching about Jesus Christ."

    This is not true and a weak answer. I attended the Mormon church all through my childhood, and they DO focus on church history every bit as much as they do on Jesus. It's just a white washed, scrubbed clean version of propaganda they teach. I watched endless videos on church history in Sunday school especially the "sacred grove" video, heard the Joseph Smith story taught numerous times, sang "Pioneer children sang as they walked, and walked, and walked" and spoke of the trek of the pioneers to Utah. The Mormon church has a movie about Joseph Smith's life and church history they show to investigators, and it is a complete lie of omission about the true history! I watched it and cannot believe how distorted the facts were. JS doesn't even have a gun in the jail in that movie, or any other wives! Complete lies.

    So again I ask, “How did you deal with the realization that the church does not talk about/discuss/reveal any of the “bad” parts of its history with its members?”

  8. The purpose of this post was to try and tell people not to just "say what everyone else says" such as the TRUTH. I say it works, telling the facts of church history that do not get told to members by the institution itself opens people's minds to the deception they have been put under. When I learned these things that were hidden from me as a member, it led me out of the Mormon church, as well as thousands of others! Look them up on iamanexmormon.org and you will hear the stories of people who heard the exact things that Joshua mentioned as not being effective, as the actual things that opened their eyes to the truth and made them leave it! So myself and others will continue to "just say what everyone else says" because we are the only ones who WILL say it. The Mormon leadership refuses too, and it IS effective to those seeking truth.

    -Joseph Smith DID marry young girls, and married women, and older women, lots of women.

    -There is NO archaeological evidence for the BOM.

    -There is NO geographical evidence for the BOM.

    -There were no horses or pigs in the Americas before the Spaniards.

    -There was no metallurgy in America before the Spaniards.

    -JS ordered the destruction of a printing press that was going to expose his polygamy, that is why he was arrested. Treason.

    -JS put a rock in a hat and read stories out of it, he never looked at the plates to translate.

    -JS also used the same seer stones to hunt for treasure and was taken to court and found guilty of swindling people out of money for his "treasure hunting" services.

    -There are 9 different accounts of the first vision, and has evolved into the church's whited washed version you read today.

    -The temple endowment was stolen from the Masonic temple rituals, even down to the clothing worn and secret handshakes.

    I could go on and on…but you get the picture. You can come up with excuses and conjecture to explain this stuff away, but they are all TRUE and you were never taught it by the church. You would have to learn these things from somewhere and then search out the matter yourself. And judging by the amount of people leaving the Mormon church for these reasons, I'd say "just saying what everyone else says" is working!

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/01/30/uk-mormo

  9. Well, you clearly did not read my comment then, because I directly answered your question when speaking about meat before milk, and then likening that principle to real life with us being children who inevitably need to listen to someone in a position of perceived authority in order to make the foundation of our personal beliefs.

    So, I'm not sure why you feel the need to ask your question again. . .

    But in order to be very clear, the reason as I have stated above is because the Church first teaches its new members about Jesus Christ and His sacrifice for all mankind. The single most fundamental and most important aspect of the gospel to focus on. Then, when individuals have received a testimony of Jesus Christ the teachings focus on how that belief in Jesus Christ has helped those in the past, and will help those in the present and future. It is not until one has a solid testimony of Jesus Christ that they are then ecouraged to study whatever they please, keeping in mind that they should choose their sources carefully as there have always been and will always be individuals who seek to overthrow the teachings of Jesus Christ and get people to focus on irrelevant distractions that draw ones focus away from Jesus Christ and His sacrifice. For no matter how an individual comes to a knowledge of their Savior Jesus Christ, that knowledge then needs to be elaborated and focused on with great care.

  10. "I could go on and on…but you get the picture. You can come up with excuses and conjecture to explain this stuff away, but they are all TRUE and you were never taught it by the church."

    Who says it is true Leah? Are you saying you are willing to stand next to the Prophet Joseph Smith and declare that he did not see Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and that you have been personally told elsewise? Your truth is based on you listening to someone in a position of perceived authority and you thereby cannot irrevocably decree that what you say is true. Nor can I say the same, but I and all mormons stand next to the Prophet Joseph Smith and say that if you want to know you need to study and pray and ask with a sincere heart. Do the muslims invite their memebers to pray and ask if it is true? Do the Catholics? How many other religions invite their members to ask for themselves and if they don't find an answer that's fine? Of course people will leave with that option in front of them.

    Yes people are leaving, and that is because they become distracted by what others say and are drawn away from learning about their Savior Jesus Christ. So in that sense you are right, your words are working and making people leave the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. But who says that's right? People are saying that premarital sex is ok and that is working. People are saying that homosexuality is ok and that is working.

    So, are you actually suggesting that because people are leaving the Mormon church from your comments that your comments must then be true?

  11. "Who says it is true Leah?"

    Are you saying its not? Do you think JS had only one wife? Do you think there is archaeological evidence for the BOM? Can you not google the arrest records for JS arrest like the rest of us? Those things are facts Brian, for you to deny them shows ignorance.

    "Are you saying you are willing to stand next to the Prophet Joseph Smith and declare that he did not see Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and that you have been personally told elsewise? "

    A thousand times YES, but that won't be necessary, because no one on earth will have to stand before your supposed prophet…Jesus is the judge of the world and He is the only One whom I have to answer too. I haven't been told anything by anyone claiming any authority, I read my Bible and Jesus has revealed Himself to me. You are under preconceived notions that all people act like Mormons do in their churches claiming the only truth. Jesus is the Truth.

    "So, are you actually suggesting that because people are leaving the Mormon church from your comments that your comments must then be true?"

    The facts I listed are facts, or do you know where Zarahemla is on a map?? I am only suggesting what the article said…people find out the Corporation of the President of the Church of JCLDS has been deceitful with them. They lose faith and trust in the leaders and decide if they would lie to them about their history, then what else would they lie to them about?? They then realize the church cannot be true if it has to lie and hide their history to get converts, and they leave. For you to suggest that sexual sin is the same as being truthful to church members about its history is just silly.

    Milk before meat does not mean "lie and hide the truth and hope they never find out." The concept is in the Bible, and it means to introduce the gospel first and then more difficult doctrine once the person accepts Jesus and knows who He is. Paul does not say to lie to people and hide the truth until you get your hooks into them. It does not mean be deceitful, make up a cleaned up story of your leaders/history, never reveal the truth of your history, and lie by omission and distort facts to get converts. Fail. I also know from growing up in the church that Jesus being the main focus is not true. After leaving the church I could tell you more about Joseph Smith than I ever could about Jesus thanks to the Mormon teachings. My siblings and my cousin agree that this was the focus that they remember from church also. Joseph Smith and church history were emphasized, and not truthfully.

  12. Leah, you have not understood a word I have written to you. You have twisted my words and look only to discredit them. Mormons are Christians and I am sad that you cannot see this simple truth. With every fiber of my being I wish you could leave the past behind and understand the simple truths I have taught you today. There is no more that needs to be written. So let me plea with you that you will no longer use your time focusing on the past and realize that I and other mormons are followers of Jesus Christ and our mission in life is to proclaim to the world that He is our Savior and Redeemer. Join your voice with ours in preparing the world for His Second Coming.

  13. I will leave the past behind when the Mormon church leaves the past behind. They indoctrinate children with their lies and use their history of the pioneers and how they were persecuted to gain trust and allegiance, but when others use their history to point out their lies I get "lets leave the past behind us?" Weak. You still cannot answer the question of why the church would actually need to be deceitful, because milk before meat does not give one a license to be duplicitous. Lying for the Lord is not needed when you are sharing the true gospel. The only thing Jesus asked us to do was to share the good news of Him, His gospel, not join hands with those who preach a different gospel and a different Jesus.

    Anyways, again, the point of this post was to say that "just saying what everyone else says" was not effective, and again I say it is, and so do many other ex-mo's who say finding out true church history is the reason they left the church. And they ARE leaving, and most for finding out the things listed above! Did it ever dawn on the leaders to maybe, say, just tell the truth?? And the truth shall set you free.

    My name is Leah, and I am an ex-Mormon. :) Praise the Lord!

  14. Again, no one is being deceitful. When was the last time you set foot in a Mormon church? The church very openly teaches the past and invites its members to learn the past. I am telling you to leave your past behind you.

    "The only thing Jesus asked us to do was to share the good news of Him, His gospel."

    This is exactly what we do every day.

    "Anyways, again, the point of this post was to say that “just saying what everyone else says” was not effective, and again I say it is."

    And I am saying yes it is effective, I have not contended that point, but have been explaining to you that your pent up hatred towards another christian faith can lead you to nothing but unChristian thoughts and actions.

    My name is Brian, and I'm a Christian.

  15. The Bible says that we aren't to add or subtract anything from the Bible. JS not only attempted to ADD to the cannon, but he PLAGIARIZED plenty of verses in the Bible in his totally false junk. Mormons have been duped. It feels good to belong, but belonging to a cult is not worth it!

    I also don't think Leah has pent up hatred for Mormons. I see outrage, but not hatred.

  16. Emily that is possibly the weakest attack to the Book of Mormon. Here is the scripture you are referring to:

    "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:" (Revelations 22:18)

    Two things here:

    1) The Bible is not a book, but a collection of holy books. The book of Revelation was chronologically not the last book written of the books included in the Bible; Therefore, if the books were arranged chronologically you would then have to take that logic and say everything that was written after John's Book of Revelation was wrong and those writers were going to receive the plagues mentioned in the Book of Revelation.

    2) John is speaking directly of his book of revelation as the Bible was not formed when he wrote his words. When we look at the Book of revelation as a stand alone work (which it originally was until it was included in the bible) it is easy to see that he is saying do not add to my revelations or you will receive the plagues I have mentioned.

    "but belonging to a cult is not worth it!"

    Spoiler alert. . . Christianity is a cult!

    In my opinion there is nothing better than to be able to surround myself with people who love the Savior as much as I do (Mormons and other Christians alike). A sense of belonging really has little to do with it, it is a sense of accomplishment. When you can teach someone about Jesus Christ and then you can watch them take His loving sacrifice into their lives and start living a more fulfilling and happy life, that is the reward.

  17. You are arguing semantics Brian, the warning of not adding to God's word is in several places in the Bible, and Joseph Smith did just that. The doctrine of the preexistence, Jesus being ours and Satan's spiritual brother, and eternal temple marriages among others is NOWHERE to be found in the Bible, Smith "added" those things and that is exactly what the warning was referring too…not adding or changing anything that God had revealed to us through His word. You have to agree that he did, since most of Smiths added doctrines aren't even found in the Book of Mormon. You believe it to be new revelation do you not? Isn't the BOM "another testament" of Jesus Christ?? The word testament comes from the rendering of the Greek word diatheke, which is twenty times rendered "covenant" in the KJ Authorized Version. So the the Book of Mormon is "another covenant."

    Some of the Jewish faith consider Christianity to be a sect of Judaism, since Jesus was a Jew and started Christianity rooted in Judaism. But here's the BIG difference between Christianity and Mormonism: Christians don't claim to be Jews, we don't claim to be the only "true" Jews, we don't claim to be the "one true Jewish church" and we certainly don't tell anyone of Jewish faith that their religion is an abomination before God. We recognize our faith is a new, different set of religious beliefs from Judaism (hence "New Covenant") so most Jews aren't trying to correct us because we aren't deluding ourselves and denouncing their faith as corrupt. Get the picture?? This is why Christians fight against Mormonism, Smith cast the first stone and Mormon missionaries continue to cast stones every time they tell a prospective convert that Christianity is corrupt and that you guys are the "one true" Christian church. We will contend for the faith against cults who preach another gospel, another covenant, and another Jesus, as Paul did and told us to do.

    Thanks Emily, outrage is a good description. I want to help Mormons get out from under the deception of their leaders, it is infuriating to see people you love duped and lied too. But I do not hate anyone. Anytime Mormons come to our door we treat them with love and kindness, the last bishop from the ward that came by told us he was disappointed we wouldn't come to church because "we seemed like such an awesome family and they would love to have us!" to quote him. He didn't think we hated him at all :)

  18. "I want to help Mormons get out from under the deception of their leaders, it is infuriating to see people you love duped and lied too."

    This is the most annoying above all attacks people hold against the Mormon church. In a church based on self-discovery and praying to know for yourself, it is baffling that people would then say that even with the ultimate out, people are somehow duped into becoming a member and staying a member.

    I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ only because Jesus Christ fuels my daily life. No man tells me how to believe and feel. I would have left long ago if I did not receive personal witnesses of the truth and divinity of Jesus Christ and His church almost daily.

    It is not about believing in Christ because I hear it from the Bible or the Book of Mormon or any person. It is about how I feel about Jesus Christ personally. I believe in Jesus Christ because I know He is there and He changes my life daily. The Doctrine of Christ is not about seeing or reading cold hard facts to believe in Him, it is about giving up all that we have and are to follow Him. That type of conversion to Christ happens in the heart.

    "Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:" (Isaiah 29:13)

    Say what you wish about me or my beliefs, but my conversion to my Savior Jesus Christ is rooted deep within my heart and will never be removed.

  19. That is awesome Brian, you speak as though you are born again and I praise God if you are. I do not judge mens hearts, only Jesus does so that is between you and Him. I completely agree with you on those points above…the sad thing is that a lot of Mormons are not born again and do not have a personal relationship with Jesus. I know them myself and they do not speak in that language of someone who knows Jesus personally, so it is those Mormons I was referring too. Jesus said to see the kingdom of God you must be born again, and Mormons typically believe this is only possible through a Mormon baptism and a Mormon blessing, and that is false. Anyone, of any religion, can accept Jesus as their Savior and be born again.

  20. Leah, I am very pleased that we can agree on this point. I cannot argue with you that some people of the Mormon faith have not made this personal connection with Jesus Christ, but I must also say that many people of all churchs have not made a personal connection with their Savior. I think what sets someone apart is whether they have a desire to obtain a relationship with Jesus Christ and foster that relationship.

    I think the important thing we must look at in this regard is that one may come to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and then not know where to take that relationship or what to do with it.

    This is evidenced in the Bible with the many sermons the apostles had to give to people who weren't quite understanding what was required of them. We have the story of the individuals who were baptized, but weren't baptized by the right authority, and we also have sermons that had to be given to clarify the Doctrines of Christ.

    The message of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints receives a lot of flack because the majority of our doctrine is intended for those who have already established a solid relationship with Jesus Christ. The most important thing that needs to be done after one establishes a relationship with Jesus Christ is that they then need to foster that relationship and allow it to grow. Without a clear voice of authority in the world we can see worse confusion than what existed soon after Christ's death. People of that time were preaching all types of doctrines and people even tried to buy authority from the apostles.

    This brings us to Joseph Smith. Many people believe many different things about the man, but let me say what I believe about him. I believe that with all the confusion over doctrine, Jesus Christ called a young uneducated boy to be this voice of Authority. I have read his words and his teachings, and I know he had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I know he saw Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father. I know Christ established a church through Jospeh Smith that would have the authority to clarify Christ's doctrine to all the world.

    I see no problem with anyone's personal relationship with Jesus Christ, all I wish to do is invite all men everywhere to build upon that relationship and I know that the Doctrine of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints will help any man or woman come closer to their Savior Jesus Christ, mainly because it has worked for me. I started out as a young man who loved his Savior and was grateful for His sacrifice. I am now a man who knows and loves Jesus Christ like He was standing right next to me in person. I know Him, I feel Him daily, and I want all men and women everywhere to feel in their hearts what I feel in mine.

    Without the Authority of a Prophet, it is still very possible to foster a relationship with Jesus Christ, but I have seen how much easier it is to create such a personal relationship when there is a Prophet of God giving direction as to how one can accomplish such a rewarding and fulfilling relationship with their Savior Jesus Christ.

  21. That is where we will depart on the subject. A person does not need a church or a prophet to help them get closer to Jesus, and that opinion is actually not Biblical at all. If that is what you need, fine, but Jesus himself never advocated such an idea. The New Testament message is clear, there is NO mediator between God and man except Jesus Christ. (1 Tim 2:5) God spoke to us in times past through the prophets, now He speaks to us through His Son. (Hebrews 1:1) Paul and the apostles gave us a clear understanding of what was needed for a relationship with Jesus, and also made it clear that the "church" is a body of believers, not an institution needed to tell you what to do. (Eph 1:22-23; 1 Cor 12:13) The New Testament churches did not have a "prophet" in charge of them nor did they even have the name of Jesus in the title, these are made up requirements of an institution trying to get you to believe they are your saving grace. This is not Biblical. The thief on the cross never stepped foot into a church or listened to a prophet after he was saved, he didn't need too. He saw the Son personally and had faith in Him, and he was saved. The "prophet" of the LDS church hasn't even uttered anything "prophetic" in years, nor is there anything he needs to tell you that God hasn't already laid out in His word for you. It's all right there in the Bible, you just have to read it.

    As for their being people of all faiths who are not born again, that is completely right. But in Mormonism, it happens to be epidemic. Many Mormons even say "I don't need to be born again, I got it right the first time" and they have no idea what it means to be born again even though Jesus said specifically it was a requirement to see God. They even mock born again Christians, I have heard it myself so please don't deny it. The language and the teachings of it are not found in the LDS church, the last time I went was about 3 weeks ago, and I have been given a heart and a passion for reaching out to the LDS people since most of my family is still LDS. That isn't my intent on this website, I came here to do research on a topic and then kind of got sucked in to all of the conversations on different topics and can't seem to shake it :) But it is my intent in the physical world to help my Mormon family and others come to a saving born again relationship with Jesus, not just a mindless following of a president of a corporation who keeps them spinning their wheels in temples that will not get them to God. Their hearts have to be given over to the Spirit and be born again.

  22. I certainly appreciate your efforts to help people find within themselves the saving grace of Jesus Christ and foster that relationship which is crucial to living in happiness here and in the eternities.

    I understand your viewpoints on the matter of organized religion and on a prophet, but I can tell you that my experience with the Prophet's teachings and what I experience in the temple has improved my relationship with my Savior and helped me stay on the straight and narrow path; what we Mormons call "enduring to the end" after we have begun our process of being "born again" of the water and of the spirit (John 3:5). Again, there are many avenues to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. As I may feel that my path is the most clear, others will all have their own path which they feel is most clear.

    What I desire more than anything is that all mankind everywhere will foster a relationship with Jesus Christ their Lord and Savior. The world would be such a better place if everyone had a basic understanding of what it meant to follow Jesus Christ. I have dedicated my life to inviting others to come unto Christ, because I want everyone I talk to to be able to have the relationship I have.

  23. "Following Jesus" and knowing Him are actually different. People could "follow" Jesus, meaning they could try and follow His example and lead a "good" life (I say "good" because their are none that are "good" but God) but do they have a relationship with Him? There is a difference. Atheists can live morally and do good works without any belief in any God.

    Have you asked Jesus, on your own just between Him and you, to come into your life and be Lord of it? Have you told Him you cannot do anything good without His Spirit in you, and in your brokenness handed your life over to Him? You do not need any mediators to request Jesus to be your Lord, He said He would come to any that asked. Becoming born again does not require any men to lay their hands on your head (though that is ONE way it was done by the apostles, but those at Pentecost needed no such ritual), it is a personal request from your heart when you cry out to God to save you, because you cannot save yourself. Only He is mighty enough to save, and He will if you ask in faith!

    I pray you will make this petition to God Brian. Even though I may get emphatic or passionate about certain topics I view as blasphemous on here, my heart's desire is for all Mormons to be saved by coming to know and trust in Jesus alone as their Savior, not "priesthood" holding men. Ask God to show you HIS truth, not the words of men, and He will be faithful. Just you and Him, because in the end that is who it comes down too, the relationship you had personally with Him and if you had received His Spirit into your heart.

  24. I think ex-mormons like Leah, if she truly is an ex-mormon, (personally, I remain unconvinced, as there are many psychotic individuals which go to I’m an ex-mormon websites, read the anecdotes there, and fit them into their own personas) are as Brian describes, searching for authority in man’s works, not God’s commandment. It’s amusing to read her declarations substantiating these things, then turn around and ask if others have accepted Christ. This is the final straw that breaks the back of dubious suspicion. Notice that she hasn’t provided any real reason, doctrinally, for elucidating why the LDS faith is incorrect. She’s only provided the usual talking points that have to do with men’s actions, and much of it based upon hearsay.

    To Leah, I would offer this question: How does a god who creates me ex-nihilo (Latin for “out of nothing”) hold me accountable for anything I do, when I’m just simply acting out the natures he gave me? To my knowledge, no other Christian faith answers this. They bitterly cling to their ex-nihilo doctrine, because to do anything different would be to give seed for people to ask questions they simply cannot answer. This one single statement tears apart the foundation of their belief, because it illustrates a god who blames other people (his creations) for his own mistakes. Only the precept of Divine Embodiment, taught by Joseph Smith, (or through, depending on your personal perspectives) will ever answer that question.

    I think Brian was right, but danced around what is obvious. Leah is missing not only Christ, but a childhood which had constructive criticism from loving parents.

  25. I noticed its been awhile since anyone has posted here, but I just wanted to express dually with Leah a concern against the church. She said that the church does not offer its true history and is at times even deceitful about it. I have to admit I, a current member of the church who served a full and honorable mission and who has gone through the temple and received all the ordinances there, have found the same to be true. I was taught not only in primary and young men’s but also in gospel Doctrine and in general conference and in just about every talk I’ve read that blacks did not receive the priesthood until 1978, that Joseph Smith had one wife, that Joseph Smith translated The Book of Mormon directly from the plates, that he used the urim and thummim to do so, that the pioneers of the Willy Martin handcart companies sacrifice what they did because they had to, etc, etc, etc. I have found though in the recent year and a half of actually doing research and not demonizing anything that went against the church as anti that everything I just listed above is very different or completely not correct by what the church teaches as truth. About the blacks and the priesthood is that there were a number of black men that held the priesthood and had Temple ordinances done before the ban occurred, that band as far as we know came from Brigham Young along with many false doctrines and Revelations attached, Joseph Smith had many wives and many are still under controversy even among Church standards, the Book of Mormon was translated oftentimes without the plates even in the room and Joseph Smith used mostly other stones that he found even before the angel Moroni came to him, the pioneers of the Willy Martin handcart company did not need to leave when they did but instead followed the leaders which told them God needed them to and which leaders later admitted they had made a mistake and did so because they believed God would just protect them. I have not written off the church as I still believe that God founded this church and that it does hold his priesthood however, and as I’m seeing happen more and more by the church, there is a lot of history that shows the Follies of man which before recent times the church believed should not be taught or known by the members of the church (and I mean at all, not that milk should come before meat, but that that information was dangerous and hurtful to the Church as taught by Elder Packer I believe). I would normally cite all my sources at the end of this post butt have done that so many times just to find that no one has even followed them. So if you want to verify what I’ve said above start on the lds.org pages on blacks and the priesthood, and polygamy and their sources, and on “17 Miracles” movie and its sources. The dangerous informant is either by Packer or Ballard, and it’s easy to find a reputable source through Google.

  26. Towards the end what I forgot to say is that the Church is finally becoming more transparent, however, as with Brigham Young’s false revelations and doctrines regarding Blacks and the Priesthood, they don’t tall about it but instead only list the document in their sources which you have to go searching for to read.

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