Ask the Mormon - Page 8 - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Lypton Village > Free Your Mind > Free Your Mind Archive
Click Here to Login
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 02-02-2005, 03:49 PM   #106
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by coemgen
Happy birthday U2utahU2 and congrats on getting the U2 iPod! Hopefully I'll be able to set aside some tax return money and get that myself. A friend of mine at church showed me his U2 iPod and I about wet myself.
I wanted to get back to your post because I feel we have a good discussion going on here even though I know we're both poking at each other's beliefs. But hey, we can do that respectfully, right?
I have to admit, your explanation of salvation doesn't sound un-Christian, but it actually does sound un-Mormon. You said salvation comes only through the grace and mercy of Jesus." However on page 113 of the Mormon book "Teaching the Gospel," it says "Individual sin must be eliminated by obedience to God's commandments."
A Biblical response to this is found in Romans 3:27-28: "Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith. For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law."
I also understand a Mormon periodical, "Instructor," October 1958, p. 318, says "The atonement of Jesus Christ does not answer for our individual, personal sins, which are forgiven on the condition of repentance, baptism, and a good life by each of us."
However, 1 John tells us "the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin." Can you explain the differences?
I also know Mormons believe Christ overcame physical death and guaranteed physical resurrection to all of us, but spiritual death can only be avoided by individual obedience to the commandments of God.
The Mormon Articles of Faith 3 and 4 say "We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel. ... We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost."
However, the Bible says we're unable to live a life righteous enough to meet God's standard of perfect holiness. Therefore we become right with God by faith in the work of Christ, not by our own works. (Earlier posts by NB and I explain the misinterpretation of the verse in James regarding works.) Baptism and holy living are acts of obedience to God, but not a means of gaining salvation.

Also U2utahU2, you are right in saying that everything hinges on whether Joseph Smith was a true prophet of God. Joseph Fielding Smith, 10th president of the Mormon church, even said as much. "Mormonism...must stand or fall on the story of Joseph Smith. He was either a prophet of God...or he was one of the biggest frauds this world has ever seen."
In response to that, let's consider this — Deuteronomy 18:20-21 tells us that a prophet of God will never have false prophecies and will never teach false gods. Keep in mind that it only takes one false prophecy to make one a false prophet and here's one false prophecy by Smith. In Doctrine and Covenants section 84, he prophesied that the city of New Jerusalem would be erected within his generation —"in the Western boundaries of the State of Missouri." But to this day, the Mormon Church has failed to erect it. In fact, the Mormon Church does not even own the land on which Joseph said the city would be built! This clearly is a false prophecy. How could Joseph Smith be a prophet of God?
Im going to let U2 utah2u awnser this but I just want to say one thing here, please do not qoute anything unless it is authrized doctrine from our church-(you'll see "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints on it" aside from The book of Mormon and the Bible). Also by W. John Walsh

All the prophesies of true prophets come true. However, as the Prophet Joseph Smith said:

"a prophet [is] a prophet only when he [is] acting as such." (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Section Five 1842–43, p.278)

In other words, not every word a prophet says is always considered prophesy. In addition, some prophesies are conditional in nature. For example, in the Holy Bible, the prophet Jonah prophesied that Ninevah would by overthrown within forty days:

"And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown." (Jonah 3:4)

However, the people of Ninevah repented and the Lord withdrew the prophecy:

"And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did [it] not." (Jonah 3:10)

Was Jonah a false prophet? No, the prophecy was simply a conditional one.

It's rather common for anti-Mormons to try and turn every single statement ever said by any Church leader at any time into an official prophecy that has no conditions. What's especially hypocritical about this technique is that they are using the same techniques that atheists use against them. If you want a good response as to why Fundamentalist Protestant attacks against LDS Church leaders are invalid, I suggest you go to a Fundamentalist Christian bookstore, buy a book written by a Fundamentalist Christian author that refutes the attacks of atheists against the Bible, and simply apply the same principles to LDS Church leaders (e.g., "Jonah wasn't a false prophet because the prophesy was conditional in nature. Likewise Joseph Smith wasn't a false prophet because the prophecy was conditional as well)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Michael T. Griffith

The purpose of this chapter is to show that the anti-Mormon standard for judging Joseph Smith's prophecies is just as damaging to a number of Bible prophecies, if not more so.

I will not be discussing any of the Prophet Joseph Smith's alleged "false prophecies;' for two reasons: (1) He never uttered any false prophecies; and (2) before I will even enter into such a discussion, I first insist on examining some important rules about prophecy itself, and on asking anti-Mormons to justify their attack on Joseph Smith in light of those prophecies in the Bible that plainly and clearly did not come to pass.

In discussing difficult Bible prophecies, it is not my intention to attack the Bible, nor to suggest that any of the biblical prophets were false prophets. Rather, it is to illustrate the fact that anyone who accepts the anti-Mormon standard for concluding that Joseph Smith uttered false prophecies must also conclude that several Bible prophets did the same thing.

It has been my experience that anti-LDS critics are willing to make every possible allowance and exception for difficult Bible prophecies, but none for those of Joseph Smith.

The Anti-Mormon Standard

Typically, anti-Mormons point to Deuteronomy 18:21-22 as their measuring rod for branding as "false" a number of Joseph Smith's prophecies. Here is how these verses read in the Revised Standard Version (RSV):

And if you say in your heart, "How may we know the word which the

Lord has not spoken?" when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously, you need not be afraid of him.

Using a strictly literal interpretation of these verses as their guide, most if not all anti-Mormons insist that if a prophecy does not come to pass, it is automatically false, period. These critics don't seem to realize they are stepping into quicksand when they use this criterion to attack Joseph Smith. The issue of prophecy is extremely complex. It is by no means as simple as a strictly literal understanding of Deuteronomy 18:21-22. The rigid anti-Mormon interpretation of these verses invalidates several Bible prophecies as much as it does some of Joseph Smith's prophecies. In fact, atheistic critics have used this same sort of approach to attack several prophecies in the Bible.

Rules on Prophecy

However, after studying prophecy for several years, I have deduced certain rules which, when taken into account, enable us to explain the difficult prophecies uttered by certain Bible prophets and by Joseph Smith. I will now list these rules. Most of them are intertwined to varying degrees.

1. Almost all prophecy is conditional to one degree or another, even if this is not stated in the prophecy itself (which is often the case).

2. In many cases human actions and choices can alter, postpone, or prevent the fulfillment of prophecy.

3. A prophecy is not always telling us what will happen, but what could happen under certain circumstances.

4. A prophet can misinterpret the timetable for a prophecy's fulfillment (this, of course, does not invalidate the prophecy itself).

5. A prophet can be mistaken about certain details of a prophecy but correct with regard to its central message.

6. A prophecy can apply to more than one occurrence or time period, i.e., it can have dual application.

7. A prophecy's fulfillment can be intended to take place in the spirit world

or during the millennium, even if this is not stated in the prophecy itself.

8. The fulfillment of prophecy can go unobserved and/or unrecorded.

9. A prophecy can contain rhetorical overstatements. For example, a prophecy might read that "every single house" in a certain town will be "leveled to the ground;' when what is really meant is that the town will suffer heavy destruction.

10. Such terms and expressions as "soon," "quickly," "in a little while," "shortly;' etc., are often given from the Lord's perspective of time--so that "soon ;' for example, might turn out to be a very long time by our reckoning.

11. The text of a prophecy can undergo alteration to the point that it no longer reflects the original intent of the prophecy.

Therefore, just because a prophecy goes partially or totally unfulfilled does not mean it is false. Anyone who would deny this must explain those prophecies in the Bible which did not come to pass.

Difficult Bible Prophecies

Let us now examine three difficult Bible prophecies that would have to be rejected as false if we were to insist on judging them solely on the basis of a strictly literal reading of Deuteronomy 18:21-22.

In 2 Samuel 7: 5-17, we read that the prophet Nathan unequivocally prophesied to David that through his son Solomon the Davidic empire would be established "forever;' that the children of Israel would dwell in the promised land "and move no more," and that the "children of wickedness" would no longer afflict them. These things are quite clearly stated. No conditions are attached to these promises, none whatsoever.

That Nathan was predicting the permanent establishment of the temporal kingdom of David has even been acknowledged (albeit somewhat obliquely) by R. K. Harrison, a fine conservative Bible scholar:

The Davidic dynasty was confidently expected to usher in a new era of Israelite life of an enduring quality (2 Sam. 7:5if), because it was firmly rooted in loyalty to the God of the Covenant. (1969:410, emphasis added.)

Robert Jamieson, Andrew Faucet, and David Brown concede that the promise of "the throne of his kingdom" being established "forever" (vs. 13) refers "in its primary application, to Solomon, and to the temporal kingdom of David's family" (587). The promise is reiterated in verse 16: "thine [David's] house and thy kingdom shall be established forever before thee: thy throne shall be established forever." In short, as Robert H. Pfeiffer has stated,".. . the point of II Samuel 7 is the eternity of this [the Davidic] dynasty" (370). It was because of the supposed permanence of the Davidic empire that the children of Israel would be able to remain in the promised land "and move no more" (vs. 10).

And, as for the assurance that the Israelites would no longer be afflicted by "the children of wickedness" (vs. 10), the New International Version phrases it this way: "Wicked people will not oppress them any more."

But, of course, what actually happened to the Davidic empire and to the children of Israel? The Davidic dynasty was later smashed. The Israelites were driven and scattered from the promised land. And "wicked people" certainly continued to afflict and oppress them.

The second difficult Bible prophecy we will consider is one which is attributed to the Savior Himself. It is found in Matthew 10:23, wherein Jesus is represented as very matter-of-factly stating that His second coming would occur before the disciples returned from the mission on which He was then sending them. This, of course, did not happen. The verse roads as follows in the RSV:

When they persecute you [the disciples] in one town, flee to the next; for truly, I say unto you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel, before the Son of man comes.

Howard Clark Kee has said the following about this verse:

One of the most problematic sayings in the whole Synoptic tradition [i.e., Matthew, Mark, and Luke] is this explicit statement that the disciples will not have completed their mission tour before the Son of man comes, i.e., before the age ends and the kingdom of God arrives in its fullness. (In Laymon 622)

Says T. F. Glasson, "Thus, before the disciples return Jesus expects to be caught up to heaven and to come down in glory" (57).

This verse is so problematic that many scholars have questioned its authenticity. Glasson notes that them is "widespread doubt concerning the genuineness of Matthew 10:23.. . ." (59).

The third difficult Bible prophecy we will consider is Judges 13:5, where it is recounted that an angel promised Samson's mother that Samson would "begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines." No matter how liberal or expansive one wants to be with the facts of Israelite history (as recorded in the Bible or elsewhere), there is no way it can reasonably be concluded that Samson fulfilled this prophecy.

Not only did Samson fail to even "begin" to free Israel from the Philistines, but (1) there were times when he consorted with Philistine women, (2) he married a Philistine, (3) he himself never even led any Israelite troops against the Philistines, and (4) the Philistines eventually humiliated him.

Moreover, and most importantly, Israel actually lost ground to the Philistines during Samson's tenure. Judges 13-16 illustrates Philistine encroachment into Hebrew territory. The Samson narrative documents the eastward expansion of the Philistines by mentioning the Philistine presence in Timnah and Lehi, both in the strategic valley of Sorek (Achtemeier 1985:787-791). This Philistine expansion worsened the land shortage that eventually forced the Danites to migrate northward.

Of course, the non-fulfillment of Judges 13: 5 can be attributed to Samson's failure to live according to his Nazarite calling. In addition to his sexual liaisons, he married a Philistine, ate unclean food, drank wine, and allowed his hair to be cut. Therefore, it could be said that the angel's prophecy was nullified by Samson's behavior. However, the angel placed absolutely no conditions on his promise that Samson would begin to deliver Israel from the Philistines. He simply declared that Samson would do so.

Conclusion

The three Bible prophecies discussed above are certainly "difficult" to put it mildly. However, they can be explained, if one is willing to accept the rules on prophecy presented herein.

The exact same thing can be said about Joseph Smith's alleged "false prophecies." Joseph Smith was a true prophet of God, and he never uttered a single false prophecy.

A Ready Reply, p. 22-26
Copyright by Horizon


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Jeff Lindsay

If any prophecy of a so-called prophet proves to be wrong, shouldn't we reject him? Isn't that the standard of Deut. 18:22?

Deut. 18:22 reads:

When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

This doesn't exactly say that one mistake makes a false prophet. James L. Mays, editor of Harper's Bible Commentary (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1988, p. 226), writes:

Prophecy in the names of other gods is easily rejected, but false prophecy in God's name is a more serious matter. This dilemma requires the application of a pragmatic criterion that, although clearly useless for judgments on individual oracles, is certainly a way to evaluate a prophet's overall performance.

The problem with applying Deut. 18:22 to a single, individual prophecy is that some prophecies can be fulfilled in complex ways or at times much later than anticipated by the hearers. Moreover, God sometimes appears to reverse certain prophecies, as He says He is free to do in Jeremiah 18:7-10:

7 At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it;

8 If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.

9 And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it;

10 If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.

Be careful in how you apply Deut. 18:22, for you threaten to reject some true prophets in the Bible! There are examples where a true prophet prophesied something which did not happen as he stated, to the best of our knowledge. An example is found in the story of Jonah, who was told by God to prophecy to the people of Nineveh. Jonah prophesied that the people would be destroyed in 40 days (Jonah 3:4) - no loopholes were offered, just imminent doom. God changed things, however, when the people repented and He chose to spare them - much to the chagrin of that imperfect (yet still divinely called) prophet, Jonah. Jonah, in fact, was "displeased ... exceedingly" and "very angry" (Jonah 4:1) about this change from God, perhaps because it made Jonah look bad. In spite of an "incorrect" prophecy and in spite of the obvious shortcomings of Jonah, he was a prophet of God and the Book of Jonah in the Bible is part of the Word of God. Yet if that sacred text had been lost, only to be restored by Joseph Smith, perhaps as part of the Book of Mormon, it would be assaulted as the most damning evidence against Joseph Smith. Just imagine how the critics would dismiss the Book of Jonah as being evil, contradictory, ludicrous, anti-Biblical, unscientific, and unchristian (of course, there are plenty already who reject it as it is, unable to believe major parts of the story).

The prophet Ezekiel provides another example of how true prophets may err or give prophecies of uncertain accuracy. In Ezekiel chapters 26, 27, and 28, we read that Tyre (a fortified island city) would be conquered, destroyed, and plundered by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The riches of Tyre would go to Babylon (Ezek. 26:12). Nebuchadnezzar's army did lay siege to Tyre, and its inhabitants were afflicted, apparently so much that they shaved their heads bald, as prophesied in Ezek. 27:31. However, the 13-year Babylonian siege apparently was not quite as successful as Ezekiel had predicted, perhaps because the land-based tactics of Babylonian sieges were less effective against a fortified island city with significant maritime power. The result of the siege may have been a compromise or treaty rather than total destruction and plunder, for Ezekiel 29:17-20 reports that the predicted plundering did not take place. Almost as if in compensation, the Lord now announces that He will give Egypt to the Babylonians, which is the theme of chapter 29. Here are verses 17-20:

17 And it came to pass in the seven and twentieth year, in the first month, in the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

18 Son of man, Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon caused his army to serve a great service against Tyrus: every head was made bald, and every shoulder was peeled: yet had he no wages, nor his army, for Tyrus, for the service that he had served against it:

19 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will give the land of Egypt unto Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon; and he shall take her multitude, and take her spoil, and take her prey; and it shall be the wages for his army.

20 I have given him the land of Egypt for his labour wherewith he served against it, because they wrought for me, saith the Lord GOD.

Yes, Tyre is no more, but its complete destruction apparently did not occur during the Babylonian siege, and certainly the Babylonian army did not get the riches of Tyre as has been prophesied. It is Ezekiel himself who reports this "prophetic failure." (The analysis above is derived from an article by Daniel C. Peterson in Review of Books on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 7, No. 2, 1995, pp. 49-50.) My purpose in raising this issue is not to question the wisdom of the Lord nor the truthfulness of the Bible, but to point out that an overly critical attitude and a strict application of Deut. 18:22 may reject even true, Biblical prophets. If we try hard enough to find reasons to reject a prophet, we will surely succeed - but beware lest we judge unwisely and reject those whom God has sent and anointed, even though they be mortal and fallible.

Another example to consider is the prophet Jeremiah - a great and inspired prophet - who prophesied that king Zedekiah would "die in peace" (Jer. 34:4-5). Critics could argue that this prophecy did not prove to be true, for Zedekiah saw his sons killed by the conquering Babylonians and was himself blinded and put in prison, where he died in captivity - not in peace (Jer. 52:10-11). Of course, the point is that he would not be killed by the sword, but die of natural causes - albeit in prison - yet to the critics, it may look like a case of a false prophecy. This case is certainly less clear-cut than the prophecy of Ezekiel discussed above, yet also serves to warn us against harsh judgments.

Many LDS critics attempt to condemn Joseph Smith using a standard that would, if applied to Ezekiel, Jeremiah, and Jonah, also condemn the Old Testament as a fraud.

Joseph Smith made some amazingly correct prophecies: predicting in 1832 that a civil war would erupt, beginning in South Carolina, with Great Britain to be involved; prophesying that tobacco is harmful to human health and giving a dietary code with nutritional principles much like the modern "food pyramid;" predicting his own martyrdom; prophesying of the global success that the restored Church would experience, with persecutions; predicting that the Saints would become established in the Rockies; and predicting other important events relative to Native Americans, the United States of America, the Church, future calamities, many details related to specific individuals, etc. Several of these fulfilled prophecies are discussed in detail on my LDSFAQ page, prophecies that have been fulfilled. The prophetic nature of the Book of Mormon is also noteworthy. Even mundane passages such as the physical description of Nephi's journey through the Arabian peninsula serve as validated prophecies, in a sense, for none of the many accurate details in the text could have been fabricated in 1830 based on what was then known about Arabia, and the "direct hits" (e.g., the place Bountiful and the burial site named Nahom) serve as evidences vindicating Joseph Smith as a prophet. (This section is under construction.)

The specific prophecies that are said to be false or incorrect by critics are typically based on hearsay or unreliable sources or are based on incorrect interpretations of what is said. There is no reliable evidence to say that Joseph Smith fails any sound test based on Deut. 18:22.

There is one common argument based on an official source from Joseph Smith. Many critics use Doctrine and Covenants 84:2-5 to say that Joseph was a false prophet. This section about the last days predicts that a temple would be built in Missouri "in this generation" - and has not yet been fulfilled. The critics almost always overlook the related revelation in Doctrine and Covenants 124:49-51, in which the Lord explains why the task is on hold and not required of his servants at the moment. The critics also overlook Matthew 24:34, Mark 13:30, and Luke 21:32, where Christ makes prophecies that are still not fulfilled which involved "this generation" - very similar to the wording that critics condemn in Doctrine and Covenants 84:2-5. The standard used to make a false prophet out of Joseph Smith would also reject Jesus Christ. My advice: be careful about whom you condemn and how you reject possible messengers of God.

For further reading on this topic, Michael T. Griffith has a useful article, Vindicating Prophecy: Why the Anti-Mormon View of Prophecy Is Invalid, which deals with false standards applied by anti-Mormons to LDS prophecy and prophets - standards which would invalidate the Bible as well. That article is part of his book One Lord, One Faith (Horizon Publishers, 1996).Below is a portion of that article (quoted here since the Web link may have quit working):

In 2 Samuel 7:5-17, we read that the prophet Nathan unequivocally prophesied to David that through his son Solomon the Davidic empire would be established "forever," that the children of Israel would dwell in the promised land "and move no more," and that the "children of wickedness" would no longer afflict them. These things are quite clearly stated. No conditions are attached to these promises, none whatsoever. [Yet this prophecy clearly did not prove successful if it is interpreted literally.]...

[Another example of a problematic Biblical prophecy is] Judges 13:5, where it is recounted that an angel promised Samson's mother that Samson would "begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines." No matter how liberal or expansive one wants to be with the facts of Israelite history (as recorded in the Bible or elsewhere), there is no way it can reasonably be concluded that Samson fulfilled this prophecy.

Not only did Samson fail to even "begin" to free Israel from the Philistines, but (1) there were times when he consorted with Philistine women, (2) he married a Philistine, (3) he himself never even led any Israelite troops against the Philistines, and (4) the Philistines eventually humiliated him.

Moreover, and most importantly, Israel actually lost ground to the Philistines during Samson's tenure. Judges 13-16 illustrates Philistine encroachment into Hebrew territory. The Samson narrative documents the eastward expansion of the Philistines by mentioning the Philistine presence in Timnah and Lehi, both in the strategic valley of Sorek (Achtemeier 1985:787-791). This Philistine expansion worsened the land shortage that eventually forced the Danites to migrate northward.

Of course, the nonfulfillment of Judges 13:5 can be attributed to Samson's failure to live according to his Nazarite calling. In addition to his sexual liaisons, he married a Philistine, ate unclean food, drank wine, and allowed his hair to be cut. Therefore, it could be said that the angel's prophecy was nullified by Samson's behavior. However, the angel placed absolutely no conditions on his promise that Samson would begin to deliver Israel from the Philistines. He simply declared that Samson would do so.

How can a sinner be a prophet of God?

Joseph Smith was a fallible mortal, yet was a noble and just man who was nevertheless slandered by his enemies (including some who became hateful after being excommunicated for adultery). He was great, but not perfect.

The Bible clearly teaches that true prophets of God are nevertheless imperfect. The Apostle Paul, for example, wrote of his weakness and admitted that he still struggled with sin (Romans 7:18-20). Moses, one of the greatest prophets of all, also was not without weakness and sin. A sin committed apparently in pride and disbelief kept him from being allowed to enter the promised land - as a punishment from God. (See Numbers 20:10-12. Moses did not accurately follow the instructions of the Lord in performing a miracle and seems to have presumptuously taken credit for it.) Not every act of Moses was perfect, nor was his reputation flawless. In fact, his detractors could point out that he began as a "killer," for he killed an Egyptian, although it was in the process of defending someone else who was being attacked. His brother, Aaron, called of God to serve as a mouthpiece for Moses, also sinned terribly in making a golden calf. He repented, but he did sin.

Jonah, again, is an example of an imperfect prophet, who yet was called of God and divinely inspired. David spoke and wrote scripture, yet later committed awful sins - including adultery and murder. Solomon also was guilty of ugly deeds. In the New Testament, we find contention between Paul and Barnabas and between Paul and Peter. Paul also seemed to suffer from the problem of prejudice, for his opinion of people from Crete, given in Titus 1:12-13, seems a little less than open-minded:

One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.
This witness is true.

Cretians are always liars? Maybe so, but it seems a little unfair (not to mention politically incorrect).

And among the Apostles of Christ, there was petty contention about who should be the greatest among them. They weren't perfect. They were called, chosen, anointed, and given power from God - but they made foolish mistakes at times. Even the great Peter had to weep bitterly when he realized what he had done in denying Christ three times. (Think of what fun anti-Mormons would have if Joseph Smith had denied Christ even once after his call to be a prophet.) Peter repented, and later became an immovable witness for Christ, but he was guilty of sin and failure after being ordained an Apostle. Human servants are still human and fallible - but as servants of God, they can act as true prophets and teach truth, prophesy about great things, and lead us to Christ. But we worship God, not his mortal servants. Nevertheless, we will be held accountable for how we receive the authorized servants that Christ sends to us. Be careful about condemning them for their mortal faults and sins.

Copyright by Jeff Lindsay
__________________

__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 04:37 PM   #107
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by coemgen
McPhisto, I'm sorry if it seems as if I'm a bit pushy in talking about all this, but I just feel this is serious stuff, you know? Open dialogue is good on these matters and that's all I'm trying to get going. I wanted to respond to your last post like I did U2utah's. First, I feel as if you misquoted me when you said that I said "good works and grace together are "totally against the Bible." I never said that. In fact, I would refer you to James 2:14-18, which shows that faith without works is dead. However, this verse, which is often misinterpreted, does NOT say works bring us salvation. To tie works into the plan of salvation is in fact a slap in the face to Christ's work done on the cross.
You also said that it's the most false doctrine out there that grace alone saves a person, but in fact that's what we hear to be the case in Ephesians 2:8-9, which says "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast."
That's why Christ came to Earth — he lived the perfect life that we can't and died in our place as the "spotless lamb." Of course, he was able to do this because while he was here he was both man and God. (Not a god as the Mormons claim, going against the Biblical trinitarian belief of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit being ONE God, not three separate gods.)
Also, just because we're saved by grace alone DOES NOT mean we can just go around sinning as much as we want like you've assumed. One who does this does, in fact, has not accepted Christ into their hearts.
See 1 John 1: 5-10: "This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
"If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives."

Also, McPhisto, Salvation means being saved from sins — but you said the resurrection is a form of salvation, meaning we're saved from death, hell and the devil and endless torment. However, in your next paragraph, you said "Immortality comes by grace alone, but those who gain it may find themselves damned in eternity." These are conflicting statements, can you clarify?
I'm not trying to attack you or bash your faith, but I do think it's important to arrive at the truth on these matters, you know?
Yes it is very serious stuff, "The main difference between the two faiths, Christianity and Mormonism, is their plans of salvation. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints as you guys prefer to be called, teach through Christ's death AND through being obedient to certain principles, we are saved. The Mormon plan of salvation is clearly based on doing certain good works. Basically, if you follow certain laws, keep certain ordinances then salvation is yours. This goes totally against the Bible. Salvation is completely and solely from Christ alone. Salvation is a free gift from God apart from any good work we might be able to do."

Its the way you use words to make us look so foolish- in this statement you make our beliefs so ignorant to the bible, when in fact they go right with the bible. Look, we know grace is important, but so is being obedient to the commandments of God, they are both equally as important. James 2:14-18- I laughed when you said"this verse is often misinterpreted" of course its misinterpreted, It doesnt fit with your beliefs. I believe that my interpretation is correct, not my interpretation, but from a higher power, from a prophet that is called of God, that is authorised to interpret the scriptures. Ands please do not say this "To tie works into the plan of salvation is in fact a slap in the face to Christ's work done on the cross." Please understand this now- Christs atonement ( Gethsemene, and the cross) made it possible for us to repent of our sins, without the atonement of Jesus Christ we have no possible way to be made clean. When Christ was resurrected he gave us the free gift of resurrection, everybody will be resurrected, it doesnt matter, who, sinners, righteuoss, all people. by Oscar M. Baker
Both these terms are generally misunderstood because of traditions of men. And these sayings of men are more or less founded on the lie of Gen. 3:4, "Ye shall not surely die." And from this came the doctrine of the immortality of the soul. So then resurrection is not really needed, and salvation has come to mean avoiding the punishments and tortures in hell for sins.

Immortal soul is a term foreign to the Scriptures. And hell is simply the grave in which there is no knowledge or device, the dead know not anything. So in the light of these things, many have to revise their ideas of resurrection and salvation.

In the first place, these two are inseparable. Salvation includes resurrection. That is why that we find in 1 Cor. 15:12-18 the fact that salvation without resurrection leaves men in a miserable state, and faith vain.

In John 3:16 the alternatives are perish or having everlasting life. Those who believe are given everlasting life and will be raised at the last day (John 6:40,54).

In Eph. 1:14 resurrection is spoken of as the redemption of the purchased possession, i.e., resurrection. Likewise in 4:30 the believer is sealed unto the day of redemption, i.e., the day of resurrection. Those who have believed as in 2:8-10, have then the certainty of resurrection. Since resurrection is a part of salvation, and that is for the believer, then the unbeliever can have no part in it. He has no salvation, hence no resurrection.

Those who profess to believe that there is a universal salvation for all men, then must also believe in a universal resurrection. But this is not to be found in the Scriptures.

In the past dispensation, we find Rom. 13:11, "For now is our salvation nearer than when we believed." Salvation here covers quite a bit. It is the Lord, His coming, the raising of the dead and the change of the believers that are alive at His coming. This is their salvation.

"So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin, unto salvation" (Heb. 9:28). Again the second coming and resurrection are the salvation the Hebrews were to look for.

So we have to conclude that salvation includes resurrection. Even those who are not overcomers will be raised. All that have life, both just and unjust are in this group. But no resurrection has been provided for the unbelievers. Satan does not have that power, and so his are forever dead. That is where God has the advantage. He may have only a remnant in each age, but all these will be resurrected and accomplish God's purpose in them. Satan will have none when death and hell cease to exist. And he, himself, will also perish and be no more.

Salvation and resurrection belong together!


The trinity is made up of three seprate beings and that is easily seen in the baptism of Jesus Christ(Mathew 3:13-17), go and read and you will know that they are three seprate beings. They are 3 seprate beings, but 1(bible meaning) in PURPOSE! In closing I just want to tell everyone that I truly know tht works are very are important, Baptism and recieving the Gift of the Holy Ghost is a work, and Jesus teaches us that we must baptised to inherit the Kingdom of God. Read this also St John 3:1-8- except a man be born of water and spirit he can not enter the kingdom of God. Jesus did his part, now we have to do our part in this life, we have to obey the commandments, and when we fail we have to repent, we have to perform those ordinances that Christ has commanded us to fullfil, adn if we do all we can Chirst and God knows our heart and by the grace of them we will be saved. Coegman, I know that this can go on forever, I know that you will come back with more, these debates are never ending, and I want you to know how firmly I believe in the teachings of Christ and of our church. Ill let u2Utah2u handle this forum now, but i will post about baptsims for the dead tongiht some time. Peace out
__________________

__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 04:42 PM   #108
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 08:11 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by macphisto23
I believe that my interpretation is correct, not my interpretation, but from a higher power, from a prophet that is called of God, that is authorised to interpret the scriptures.
Are your beliefs based on your reading, understanding and interpretation of Scripture, or are they based on Joseph Smith's interpretations?
__________________
nbcrusader is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 04:44 PM   #109
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by coemgen
To both of you, and I don't mean this to be confrontational at all, but I am sincerely curious, how would those of you who are Mormons respond to this open letter to Mormons from Daryl E. Witmer of AIIA Institute:

"Numerous times in my various conversations with those of you who claim that Joseph Smith, Jr., was indeed a true prophet of God, conveying an authentic message from God, I have heard you rather adeptly respond to some of the more common charges against Mormonism, such as the one that the Book of Mormon and the Doctrines & Covenants add to the canon of Holy Scripture, thus violating Revelation 22:18.

"But over and over again I have heard you sidestep, equivocate, hedge, dodge, and generally try to circumvent in just about every way possible the inspired words of the Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:6-9.

"One Mormon elder, in a written response commenting on the Galatians text, actually said, "...please don't beat me over the head with it."

"Now that sounds to me more than a little bit defensive, and it even further confirms for me the fact that Galatians 1:6-9 is Mormonism's most convicting Bible text. In that passage the Apostle Paul says,

"'I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you, and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.'"

"The only even partially credible attempt I've ever heard Mormons advance in response to this text is to suggest that it was the early church who believed the false gospel, with Joseph Smith therefore being ordained by God to restore it. But if the Church was already hopelessly apostate when Paul wrote these words, what was the point of his writing them? And why, in such an event, would God have waited over 1,766 years (from 57 A.D. to 1823 A.D.) to restore His Church?

"Even if this text was only, primarily, intended to be applied locally, to the church in Galatia, the principle stands -- the true Gospel is a message of salvation by grace, not of works -- which flies in the face of other Mormon teaching (Book of Mormon, 3 Nephi 12:44-45).

"Aside from all that, the plain sense of this text itself could not be any clearer. Paul includes even himself among those who are to be accursed if he should ever subsequently try to revise or append the Gospel in any way. And he says, "...or an angel from heaven..." If the term angel (aggelos -- messenger) doesn't include Moroni, whose image rises atop the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah, to this day, then who would it ever include?

"Would you consider the possibility that either Moroni, or Moroni's father, Mormon, the Nephite historian and alleged author of the gold plates from which the Book of Mormon was later to be translated, were false spirits, or at least had it wrong due to the leading of a false spirit -- and that Joseph Smith was therefore at the very least the victim of a deceiving spirit (I Timothy 4:1) disguised as an angel of light (II Corinthians 11:14)?

"Read Galatians 1:6-9 again. If you have a thoughtful response for me about any other possible application to Mormonism than the one provided here, please write me.

"If, on the other hand, this text begins to convict you regarding the very tenuous ground on which Mormonism stands, please -- don't quell the conviction. Welcome it as God's voice of direction for you to discern the spirit of truth from the spirit of error. And then move to act on that conviction and discernment."
by W. John Walsh

Joseph Smith made many changes to the Bible. Doesn't this violate the principles laid down by Revelation 22:18-19?

Revelation 22:18-9 which states:

"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: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and [from] the things which are written in this book."

The apostle John warned people against altering his prophetic utterances, thereby changing their original meaning. Joseph Smith's changes, as found in the Joseph Smith Translation (JST), contain clarifications and corrections designed to bring the Biblical text back to their original meaning. The Prophet Joseph Smith explained:

"I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers. Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors" (TPJS, p. 327).

"From sundry revelations which had been received, it was apparent that many points touching the salvation of men, had been taken from the Bible, or lost before it was compiled" (TPJS, pp. 9-10).

Therefore, since Joseph Smith was restoring John's original intent and meaning, the verses to not apply to the Joseph Smith Translation.
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 04:45 PM   #110
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
by W. John Walsh

How do you respond to the Bible and the fact that it states that no one is to add or take away from it?

I assume you are referring to Revelation 22:18-9 which states:

"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: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and [from] the things which are written in this book."

A brief review of some historical facts should clear up this issue. The Bible is a collection of sacred writings that were compiled into book format centuries after the death of the original writers. When the Apostle John wrote these verses, the Bible as we know it today had not been compiled yet. Therefore, his words could not possibly be applied to the entire collection of writings today known as the Bible. John was referring specifically to the Book of Revelation.

Additionally, even though Revelation is traditionally placed last in the Bible, most Biblical scholars do not believe that it was the last book to be written among the compiled records contained in the Bible. If your reasoning is true, then those Books would also have to be removed from the Bible and discarded as false.

Also, please note the very similar wording by Moses found in Deuteronomy 4:2:

"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish [ought] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you."

If your interpretation of the Revelation verses were correct, then they would have to be applied here as well. In which case, the Old Testament after Deuteronomy and the entire New Testament would have to be discarded as false.

Finally, I should say that the words of both Moses and John are true. Man should not take it upon himself to add to or diminish the word of God.

"For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost." (2 Peter 1:21)

God has a plan for us and chooses men called Prophets to teach us his plan. Prophets teach the word of God as they are moved by the Holy Ghost. It is the same today as it was 2000 years ago, for God is the same yesterday, and today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

"For he is the same yesterday, today, and forever; and the way is prepared for all men from the foundation of the world, if it so be that they repent and come unto him". (Book of Mormon, 1 Nephi 10:18)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Robert L. Millett

First of all, it appears that the passages in the Old Testament that warn against such things (Deuteronomy 4:2; 12:32) are actually warning against adding to the books of Moses, the Pentateuch. This certainly could not have reference to adding to the Old Testament in general, or else we could not in good conscience accept the thirty-four books that follow the Pentateuch. Furthermore, the warning attached to the end of the Revelation of John is a warning against adding to or taking away from "the words of the prophecy of this book" (Revelation 22:18), namely, the Apocalypse. Most important, Latter-day Saints believe that these warnings have to do with the condemnation associated with a man, an uninspired man, a man not called of God, taking upon himself the responsibility to add to or take from the canon of scripture. But it is God's right to speak beyond what he has spoken already (as he certainly did in the person and messages and works of Jesus himself), and Latter-day Saints feel that God should be allowed to direct and empower his children as need arises. It is not for us to set up bounds and stakes for the Almighty. Nowhere in the Bible itself do we learn that God will no longer speak directly to his children or add to past scripture.

The Mormon Faith: A New Look at Christianity
Copyright by Deseret Book


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Scott Drennan

REVELATION 22:18-19 – THE "MORMON THEOLOGY KILLER" PASSAGE

(Send comments & complaints, suggestions & questions to sdrennan@juno.com)

Perhaps the most common reservation and initial roadblock people have about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the common belief that there cannot be any more "direction" revelation and/or new scripture. ("Direction" revelation defined as important divine instruction of use to the church or world at large.) And the core scripture so frequently quoted to support this belief and to condemn the Book of Mormon is the famous end-of-the-Bible passage of Revelation 22:18-19:

"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: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and [from] the things which are written in this book."

I believe no other scripture comes close in its frequency of "use against" the LDS church. Furthermore, a very significant share of the arguments against LDS doctrine fall back to the "you can't find that in the Bible." So if this is the core scripture behind the core reservation about LDS doctrine, it deserves a particularly rigorous review. (So this and otherwise being bored in a London hotel room is my apology for the length of what follows.) But before doing so, I desire to quickly add that I find this belief very highly understandable given that most people have never experienced revelation and given that obviously there is little to no direction revelation when there are hundreds of Christian sects and within each sect there is disagreement on core tenets. While people realize there can be many churches full of good truths and good people, they also realize there can only be either one or none that is God's directly run by Him through revelation. Plus the great bulk of Christian churches today make no claim to have live prophets with additional scriptures. Hence the skepticism about any continued revelation and scripture is most understandable.

Before reviewing this passage, it is probably helpful to review what scripture is. Sometimes the term is used to refer to what writings are generally accepted by people as divine – but obviously this usage isn’t relevant in a debate about what is truly divine. The more meaningful definition is that scripture is important writing of divine origin that is useful to the church or world at large. Divine origin could mean the words are either: 1.) spoken by God himself; 2.) directly chosen word-for-word by God though the writing is in the form of the prophet/apostle's own narrative; 3.) or are of the prophet's own selection (though potentially having received various levels of inspiration on phrasing, how to present, etc.), but the message is still divine as the prophet is an authority on the issue due to having received revelation on the subject. And in this last category one might assume the doctrine is always right, even if the communication approach, the precise choice of words, the spelling and/or grammar, and possibly even irrelevant details might not be as desired by some people. The various writing styles of the different apostles and prophets might lead some to conclude that much scripture is of this third type. The other qualification is whether the instruction is of use to the church or world at large. If someone received inspiration where his lost car keys were, this would not be of general usage. On the other hand, although most New Testament books were epistles written only to a specific audience, they are included as scripture because of their instructional benefit to the larger church. After sufficient clarifications on what scripture is, the bottomline is that scripture is just the recording of revelation, and that to deny additional scripture is to deny additional prophets and additional direction revelation.

Enough introduction! Revelation 22:18-19 can either mean that: 1.) self-initiated editors are warned about adding or taking away from the Book of Revelation (or perhaps one might think John meant all scripture); 2.) or as is much more commonly interpreted, that God will never give more direction revelation and scripture other than the Bible, such that any claims like the Book of Mormon must be the addition of man and therefore false! It is my contention that the evidence against the latter interpretation is so immense that one cannot logically defend that view of this scripture, independent of what one's religious beliefs are and of whether one believes there will be additional revelation and scripture. The arguments against this common interpretation can be classified into three broad categories: 1.) this view is overwhelmingly inconsistent with the Bible; 2.) John was speaking only about the Book of Revelation (though the correct meaning could logically be extended to all scripture); and 3.) by understanding Bible history, it becomes obvious the passage could not have been referring to the Bible.

COMMON INTERPRETATION OVERWHELMINGLY INCONSISTENT WITH THE BIBLE

While the common interpretation of Revelation 22:18-19 is that there will never be more scriptures other than the Bible, there are a wide variety of reasons that show this view is dramatically inconsistent with the Bible.

Says What It Means, Means What It Says

A good starting point is that the passage says what it means, and means what it says. It warns man about adding or taking away. It simply doesn't say that God will never again speak, and that therefore all new scriptural claims must be false, and that therefore any claim of new scripture must only be man's addition or deletion. This common interpretation is simply dramatically inconsistent with the passage itself. God also said not to bear false witness. By the same convoluted logic one could say that what this really means is that God will never again speak, that any such claims are false witness, and that therefore all scriptures after Exodus 20 are false!

Intent is to Warn Would-Be Editors, Not Readers

The plagues and other grave warnings are to those who handle scripture and may be tempted to add or take away content If the passage purpose is to warn readers that no new scripture will ever come, then what is the relevance of listing punishments for would-be editors? The relevance is obvious however, if the intent is warn would-be editors.

Where's the Focus?

Where is the focus of the passage? First, the most words are on the punishments themselves which is again consistent with scaring off would-be editors. Secondly, there are three warnings against taking away to only one against adding. If the prime objective were to let people know any claim of added scripture must be false, one might expect more focus on potential adds.

God Makes Mistakes?

The statement about taking away scripture doesn't make a lot of sense in the context of the common interpretation. To believe that God is warning the general public about a take-away isn't logical. Either the public would never learn of it due to not seeing the original text, or if they do learn of it, they would never believe it. (Believe that God had made a mistake and now – OOPS! – is taking it away?) People know God won't take away his own words, so they do not need to be told that any such take-away must be of man. So the whole discussion of scripture take-away is not highly consistent with the common interpretation.

Reject Most of the Bible?

Deuteronomy 4:2 reads: "Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it…" Do we now reject all of the Bible after this chapter? Similar passages are also in Deuteronomy 12:32 and Proverbs 30:5-6.

Bible Names Other Scriptures

How can we say there are no other scriptures when the Bible names them? An apologist can create an alternative explanation for a few of these, but not all let alone most. Particularly when so many of them call the author a prophet. (A seer is also a prophet.) The following are generally considered the more clear references to other scriptures:

"The book of Nathan the prophet" (1 Chr. 29:29, 2 Chr. 9:29)

"Is this not written in the book of Jasher?" (Josh. 10:13, 2 Sam. 1:18)

Manasseh's dealings with God "are written among the sayings of the seers" (2 Chr. 33:19)

"Written in… the prophesy of Ahijah" (2 Chr. 9:29)

An earlier Pauline epistle to Corinth (1 Cor. 5:9)

"The book of Gad the seer" (1 Chr. 29:29)

"The book of the wars of the Lord" (Num. 21:14)

"Written in… the visions of Iddo the seer" (2 Chr. 9:29, 13:22)

"Read the epistle from Laodicea" (Col. 4:16)

"The book of Samuel the seer" (1 Chr. 29:29)

"The book of the acts of Solomon" (I Kings 11:41)

"The book of Shemaiah the prophet" (2 Chr. 12:15)

A previous epistle from Jude (Jude 1:3)

"The book of Jehu" (2 Chr. 20:34)

Who is right – the Bible or those who say there are no other scriptures?

Prophesies Quoted But Not Found

Matthew 2:23 reads: "And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene." Jude 1:14 reads: "And Enoch… prophesied of these…" Where are these prophesies from these prophets? Apparently lost. Apparently there are other books of scripture.

It Breaks God's Pattern

Throughout all of history, when God has found a people that would work with him, it has been through revelation to his prophets (apostles are prophets who have the extra calling to be witnesses of Christ and his resurrection.) The record of these revelations is scripture. Amos 3:7 reads: "Surely the Lord God will do NOTHING (my emphasis) except he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets." So why would God change his pattern now? Indeed, how could God work with his people except through revelation?

Some argue that there was no need for revelation following the apostles' demise. Where's the logic for this? If everything necessary for heaven is so obvious, then why does Christianity have such wide chasms just on the core principles of salvation alone? (For instance, the Bible says baptism is necessary – is that true? And if so, is immersion necessary? Must it be by priesthood authority? As long as the baptism is in Christ's name, can it be into any church, including the Mormons? What happens to those who never heard of Christ and had no chance to be baptized? What sins annul salvation through baptism? And must infants be baptized?)

And aside from revelation for salvation, what about revelation for earthly needs? Would Noah have built the ark on a hunch? Would the Israelites have left Egypt without a Moses? Would Peter have taken the gospel to the Gentiles on his own predisposition?

Also how could the world need revelation after Christ, but not after the apostles? And though the church is "built upon the foundation of apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone" (Eph. 2:20, also see Eph. 3:5), we no longer need direction from Christ through his prophets and apostles? Foundations and cornerstones are no longer relevant to modern buildings? Also read 1 Cor. 12, then focus on verses 28-29.

It Breaks Man's Pattern

Even among the "people of God", man's pattern has been to drift away from the truth. Noah's world was decadent. The history of the "chosen Israelites" is a constant repetition of sin and apostasy. Most of the New Testament books are epistles full of corrections to the already-varying members who had previously been converted. The New Testament talks about continued apostasy (2 The. 2, 1 Cor. 11:18-19, Mat 24:5,24, Acts 20:29 among many others). Do Protestants believe there was no apostasy in the Catholic/Orthodox churches? The unfortunate pattern and history of God's people is that they veer from the pure and complete teaching of God, thus they need continued revelation and scripture from prophets. Can one honestly deny the benefit revelation would have today?

What about Scriptures Prophesying Future Scripture?

Ezekiel 37:15-20 prophesies about the stick of Judah – the Bible. (Almost all the Old and New Testament books were written by ethnic Jews, Paul a Benjamite is appropriately called a Jew as Benjamin was the other tribe in the Kingdom of Judah, and though Moses was a Levite his and all other books were maintained by the Jews through the centuries.) Clearly the stick of Judah is the Bible. But this passage also prophesies of the writing of the stick of Joseph and how that one day it would join with the Bible. This prophesy was fulfilled with the Book of Mormon. Even if one doesn't accept the Book of Mormon, one must still try to explain this prophesy of future Joseph scripture. And after that, then Isaiah 29 must be the next to be explained away.

What about Scriptures Prophesying Future Revelation?

Related topic, what about the scriptures about future revelations? I like Acts 3:21 where it talks about how Christ will be in heaven "until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began" – the restoration of Christ's original gospel prior to his second coming. How about Rev. 11:3: "they shall prophecy"? Or Rev. 14:6, Eph. 1:10, or Daniel 2? The Bible is so full of events that will occur prior to Christ's second coming that a complete list would be inappropriate. But since the passage under debate is at the end of the New Testament, I will refer the reader to the end of the Old Testament – Mal. 4:5-6. So now Elijah can't come after all because additional revelation is not possible? Which testament-closer does one now choose?

No Other Scriptural Support

If there was such a dramatic departure in God's practice that he would never again give revelation, prophets would never again occur, and there never would be new scripture, why wouldn't God have said so? Or his apostles or prophets? Where are scriptures to support this beside the convoluted reading of the Revelation passage being debated? Such a radical new dogma based solely on a highly illogical reading of a single scripture – is this sound? Sadly, there are several scriptures sometimes referenced to "support" this view of no more revelation or scripture, but they also rely on the same "logic" of making interpretations that clearly aren't supported by what the scripture says. However, one of the strongest arguments for something is to review the weakness of the arguments used against a proposition. Some of the scriptures illogically quoted for "never any more prophets, revelation, or scripture" are John 15:15, Heb. 1:1-2, John 16:12-13, II Tim. 3:14-17, I Cor. 13:8, II Cor. 11:13-15, Mat. 11:13, Acts 20:20&27, II Pet. 1:3, Deut. 12:32, Prov. 30:5-6, Isa. 8:20, Acts 17:11, Gal. 1:6-9, I The. 5:21, and I John 4:1 among others.

Doctrinal Insufficiency

So many doctrines are insufficiently discussed in the Bible for there to be a unity of faith within the Christian world. Consequently perhaps the Bible isn't all the direction a Christian could possibly need. If it was, why were so many Catholic councils (and Protestant conferences in more recent times) held through the centuries to decide not only policies but also (disturbingly so) doctrine!?

Summary

When one takes a scripture at face value and then finds it overwhelmingly inconsistent with the entire Bible, one should wonder whether they have the correct interpretation. But this isn't the case for Revelation 22:18-19. While the common interpretation is inconsistent with the entire Bible, it is also entirely inconsistent with what the face value of what the scripture itself says. When it says that if man changes the book, man will be punished, that is exactly what it means! It simply doesn't forbid God from further revelation, prophets, or scripture.

PASSAGE REFERS TO THE BOOK OF REVELATION

A careful analysis of the passage will clearly indicate that it only referred to the Book of Revelation.

Says What It Means, Means What It Says

John said "this book" three times. There was no compiled Bible with a blank page at the end that John was writing on. This book was the book he was writing – the book of Revelation.

"The Prophecy of This Book… The Book of This Prophecy"

The above phrases from the passage again indicate John was just referring to the Book of Revelation. Within the New Testament the first five books are primarily historical, the next 21 are instructional letters, the last is Revelation, the sole book that is almost entirely prophecy. Rev. 1:1-3 states that this will be a book of prophecy. In Rev. 1:11 Christ tells John "What thou seest, write in a book" and then ten more times in the book John is told to write of the prophecies, with one time being told not to write something. Then in the final chapter there are the phrases "the sayings of the prophecy of this book" and "keep the sayings of this book." Keep in mind "prophecy" and "revelation" are very similar words. The book of this prophecy is clearly the Book of Revelation, not the Bible.

Also revealing is what the Lord said in verse 10 of the final chapter: "And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand." John is being told to release this remarkable book of Revelation to the general public. There is no Bible at this time, so it couldn't be telling John to release the Bible. This book of prophecy is clearly the book of Revelation, not the Bible.

"The Plagues That are Written in This Book"

What plagues are these? Other than Revelation, the word plague is only mentioned four times in the New Testament, all in the context of a disease needing to be healed. Yet in Revelation the word "plagues" is mentioned 12 times, and more meaningfully, countless verses describe the horrors of future gruesome plagues. (Particularly chapters 9 and 16.) When John writes: "If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book", John is referring to Revelation, not the Bible.

"Take Away His Part Out of the Book of Life"

The phrase "book of life" is used eight times in the Bible, seven of which are in Revelation. We learn the book of life has the list of people that will go to heaven. Again, the whole context of John's warnings is that of someone who has just read the Book of Revelation.

"…and Out of the Holy City and from the Things Written in This Book"

In the Bible the phrase "holy city" is usually referring to Jerusalem. But the entire chapter of Revelation 21 describes in splendorous detail a wonderful future holy city (heaven) that the righteous will enter – this is the holy city referred to in Revelation 22:19. Plus "from the things written in this book" means just that – the phenomenal things promised the righteous in this and the previous chapter. Again, the whole context of John's warnings is that of someone who has just read the Book of Revelation.

"For I Testify Unto Every Man That Heareth the Words of the Prophecy of This Book…"

This warning is addressed to the readers of "the prophecy of this book", the Book of Revelation, not the Bible, because it was intended for the Book of Revelation, not the Bible.

Summary

A careful reading of both Rev. 22:18-19 as well as the entire Book of Revelation will lead the reader to conclude that this passage's warning are in the context of the Book of Revelation, not the Bible. "This/these" five times of which three are "this book", three references to topics in Revelation, plus "prophesy" two times -- it is hard to imagine contriving a passage with more blatant obvious reference to the Book of Revelation itself.

HISTORY INDICATES PASSAGE COULD NOT HAVE BEEN REFERRING TO THE BIBLE

A review of Bible history will clearly indicate John could not have possibly been referring to the Bible. Even if a reader thinks that perhaps John was referring to all scripture as opposed to just the Book of Revelation, a review of Bible history will lead one to realize that John still could not have been referring specifically to the Bible.

Scripture Written after Book of Revelation

It is believed that John wrote the Book of Revelation within a year of 95 A.D. while on the Isle of Patmos. John was banished to Patmos by Domitian. After Domitian's death in 96 A.D., John returns to Ephesus, and writes his gospel. And John's three epistles are all believed to also have been written after he left the Isle of Patmos. Thus how could John be saying there would be no more scripture when he wrote the Revelation passage? Did John instigate a plague on himself?

End of Bible Placement

Some have mistakenly assumed that the passage about not adding or taking away was placed in Revelation because it was the last book of the Bible, thereby indicating the passage referred to the whole Bible. However, as discussed before, the New Testament books were placed according to category, not chronology – what timing history we have has almost no correlation to the order written. And the Pauline epistles were placed in descending length (except Hebrews because its authorship was disputed). The sole book on future prophecy would naturally be placed later at the end of the Bible. Another factor on placement may have been confidence in divine authenticity, the latter books of the New Testament were the most disputed, Revelation being one of the very most disputed. Had the order of books in the Bible been done on chronology or authorship, putting Revelation any place other than dead last, the Revelation 22:18-19 passage would have been as obscurely known as the passage in Deuteronomy 4:2.

What Bible?

The Bible we have today, a compilation of several ancient books, is a relatively modern concept. Traditionally the scriptures have been individual books or sometimes small sets of books. With 362 biblical manuscripts known to have been written before the tenth century A.D., only one has a complete New Testament, and none contains the whole Bible, although it is believed that several New Testaments copies were actually written that we no longer have. Of the 5,366 known Greek biblical manuscripts, only 34 have the whole Bible, all of which were written after the year 1000. Wycliffe produced the first entire English Bible – all handwritten copies in the late 1300's. Gutenberg printed the first Bible in 1455 – 200 copies in Latin. Tyndale printed the first English New Testament in 1525. It really wasn't until after the King James Bible in 1611 that an actual Bible started becoming much more common. The concept of a Bible just didn't exist during John's time – it didn't occur until many centuries later -- John was just referring to his Book of Revelation.

More Fundamentally, Which Canon?

Completely destructive to the concept that John was referring to the Bible is that there never has been, including today, a single Bible. What books should be part of the correct canon has been in dispute for centuries and continues today. And the dispute today is not just coming from a few minor sects. While most groups who quote Revelation 22:18-19 are typically Protestant, the typical Protestant canon is actually in the minority, as Catholics, with several more books, outnumber Protestants worldwide. So do plagues now come to all Catholics? Or are Protestants all barred from heaven?

From a 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia: "The idea of a complete and clear-cut canon of the New Testament existing from the beginning, that is from Apostolic times, has no foundation in history. The Canon of the New Testament, like that of the Old, is the result of a development, of a process at once stimulated by disputes with doubters, both within and without the Church, and retarded by certain obscurities and natural hesitations, and which did not reach its final term until the dogmatic definition of the Tridentine Council." And what was this "dogmatic" council? Due to the "Protestant problem", the Pope convened the Council of Trent in 1546. For the first time the Catholic church officially adopted a certain canon (the same canon already prevalent) and made it a matter of membership – the canon decree was voted in 24 to 15 with 16 abstentions. (Hard to tell what inspires more "confidence" – canon being decided by a vote, that the "yes" vote couldn't get a majority, or that what made this stick was the declaration that anyone not supporting this would be excommunicated and cursed.)

To review early canon, it is helpful to understand early Christian history. There were a variety of Christian sects and schisms, but eventually with the adoption of Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire, the Roman Catholic church became particularly dominant. Scripturally, in very broad terms, Christians appeared originally to treat the Old Testament as scripture, then started accepting the gospels as scripture, then the Pauline epistles, and then finally in various degrees the rest of today's New Testament. But there was great difference of opinion, primarily on the last set of books and on a variety of books not accepted in the KJV (King James Version). A review of some of the more famous developments would be useful:

The oldest New Testament documents (no originals exist) date to the second century – they contain portions of John in Greek

Marcion, a "heretic", may have provided the first list still recorded – he excluded the entire Old Testament and much of the New Testament.

The earliest "more mainstream" list that we're aware of is the Muratorian Canon, written in the later second century. It was the list of canon used at Rome – it excluded some of the KJV books, yet included other books. (Do we now consider as heretics the forerunner of Roman Catholic church?)

Famous "Father of Church History" Eusebius, writing about 300 A.D., rejected several of the current books and considered the excluded books heresy.

One of the more remarkable documents as it contained a New Testament (not just a list), Codex Sinaiticus, estimated from the 4th Century, included the Shepherd of Hermas and Epistle of Barnabas.

The first listing that ties to today's KJV New Testament that we have recorded was a letter from Athanasius (bishop of Alexandria) in 367. His Old Testament listing was close to today's KJV. This same New Testament list was also council approved at Hippo in 393 and Carthage in 397 and 419, although these councils endorsed a different Old Testament -- the "Catholic" Old Testament. However, these were local African synods, not general councils, just as Athanasius' letter was also only local.

In 405 Jerome produced the Latin Vulgate, to be used by the Catholic church for many years. Ironically, Jerome did not want to include the extra "Catholic" Old Testament books but did so because he was requested to, thus in the Bible he gave them a disparaging preface. Plus Jerome favored two other New Testament books that were excluded. The Vulgate would become the canon blessed by the Council of Trent in 1546.

A Laodicean epistle, the Shepherd of Hermas, and Barnabas are among the books most frequently added to the various New Testament lists over the centuries. The last several New Testament books were the ones most frequently in dispute.

To list the various canons accepted in history would go on forever. In general, the churches in the West reached a certain level of settlement on its canon more quickly, the various Eastern orthodox churches had more variety and for longer, continuing even today.

Martin Luther and many other prominent Protestant Reformers challenged a few of the New Testament books that are now widely accepted. (The Lutherans had their own Bible for many years.) It was this challenge that prompted the Catholic church to finalize their canon in 1546.

Obscenities in Church?

Undermining the concept that any existing particular Bible canon is somehow "completely right" is the Song of Solomon. The book is 0.00% doctrinal, historical, or religious. It is 100.00% love song, and then frequently obscene. While one could reference Jewish tradition for inclusion, I don't believe that something that can't be read in church could be taken seriously as divine scripture for the religious instruction (there is zero religious instruction in it) of the church. Thus, the Song of Solomon makes it even harder for someone to argue that somehow one of today's canon is at last a perfect Bible. (For the record, I believe the rest of the KJV can be confidently called inspired, allowing of course for the occasional translation issue.)

Exclusion the Issue

However the biggest issue with the Bible is not the inclusion of inappropriate material like the Song of Solomon or on occasional hyperactive editor – rather it is the exclusion of scripture. Exclusion already discussed includes the editor in error, the 14 lost books of scripture named in the Bible, the additional but less clear Biblical references to other scriptures, and prophecies quoted in the Bible but not found. Lightly discussed were the plethora of "apocryphal" books. Not yet discussed is the canon decision process -- two factors were at play that would make exclusion easier than inclusion. First, to avoid controversy and to generate consensus, the tendency was to only include books where there was a good degree of confidence. Second, one of the criteria was whether the book was already widely recognized as scripture. Both of these factors make exclusion in error more likely than inclusion in error.

A final area of exclusion is the probably large number of books that we simply have no knowledge or record of, and even larger area of divine words spoken by ancient prophets and apostles that were never recorded by anyone, or at least not by the prophet/apostle himself. For instance, Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible – we have no first hand account today of anything between Adam and Moses – an interlude that includes Enoch, Noah, Melchizedek, and Abraham among many others. And how about all the prophets between Moses and Christ? Do we Christians really think that somehow the Pharisees, Sadducees, and scribes were divinely led to have all scripture in the history of mankind? Similarly, let's remember that Christ didn’t call the "Five Apostles" – certainly the other original seven must have had something to say.

Summary

Had Revelation been placed chronologically before John's other books, the add/take away passage would be as obscure as the similar passages in Deuteronomy. When we realize that a Bible wouldn't exist for centuries, and wouldn't become common for over 1500 years, we realize John couldn't have been referring to a Bible. And with so many different lists of books accepted, particularly anciently but still today, how could one ever interpret that John was referring to the specific Bible the reader was using? Understanding Bible history makes it even more clear that John could not have been referring to the Bible in his passage.

CORRECT MEANING

The passage means what it says – it specifies punishments for anyone who might decide to edit the Book of Revelation. We can safely assume the principle is sound advice for anyone contemplating using their own "wisdom" to edit any scripture. I think it is also safe to assume the condemnation is not to the honest but mistaken translator or scribe, but rather to those who purposely change meaning. With the wealth of ancient documents now available, we have learned that today's translations are remarkably consistent which can give the modern reader confidence. But we have also learned that there are several passages with variations which reflect the need for such a Revelation passage warning. Furthermore, with some of the "modern" bibles, we can see that some feel free to take liberties with the Bible.

IRONIES

The ironies associated with this whole issue are rich, but warning, if you're irony-enjoyment impaired, and consequently when reading them are tempted to add or take away from them, proceed no further!

Pharisees

A common Biblical pattern is that often people might accept ancient dead prophets, but not accept live ones. Christ Himself said this (Mat. 23:29-37). The New Testament harshly condemns the Pharisees and Sadducees and scribes who couldn't accept the revelation in their day, and some segments of Christianity have despised Jews for 2,000 years. Ironically, generic Christianity's arguments against the LDS Church reflect remarkably well many of the same attitudes of the Jews against Christianity 2,000 years ago.

Book of Revelation Often Excluded from Canon

A very rich irony is that this "proclaimed-canon-closer" Revelation passage was often itself considered not to be scripture. Ranging from expressing skepticism to calling Revelation a fraud, its early cynics included Origen, Eusebius (the father of church history), Saint Gregory of Nazianzus, Saint John Chrysostom, Saint Cyril of Jerusalem, and the Synod of Laodicea. Doubt about the book was greater in the Eastern churches than the Western, for instance the Peshitta (Syrian Vulgate) excluded it. Prominent Protestants reformers cynical of or hostile to the Book of Revelation included Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, Karlstadt, Oecolampadius, and Erasmus. (Should Protestants now regard their founding fathers as heretics that will receive the curses of the Revelation passage?) The Book of Revelation has clearly been one of the most disputed books in the Bible.

What Scripture Indicates What Books are Scripture?

If you don't believe in later revelation, then you can't believe there was revelation in selecting the books of the Bible. The books in the Bible never list a canon or even use the words "canon" or "Bible". So how could you believe that a Bible put together many centuries later from man's wisdom is somehow the total canon, particularly given the high level of disputation on the subject. It's ironic that in one sense the common interpretation of the Revelation passage is inherently self-contradictory – proclaiming a future divine canon, then denying the revelation necessary to select and proclaim that divine canon.

Book of Mormon Prophesy

An entire chapter, II Nephi 29, in the Book of Mormon prophesied today's attitudes – about how people would just assume that there can't be any more scripture other than the Bible. It's ironic that the core argument against the book is actually a fulfillment of prophesy within the book.

Nicene Creed

It's also ironic that many people who believe in no more revelation or scripture after John often treat the Nicene Creed (that came 3 centuries later) as being above the scriptures. Particularly ironic because the creed's incomprehensible dogma (3=1, 1=3) goes directly against how the Bible treats the Godhead as three unique individuals – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

Church Teaching Above Bible

In a similar vein, some people today sometimes put their church teachings above that of the scriptures. Yet if they deny additional revelation exists, how can do justify extra-Biblical teaching? While many proclaim the Bible to be the sole source of authority, yet in reality they follow their leaders, perhaps because they believe that surely their leaders must know what they are talking about.

Non-Prophet Churches

It's ironic that Christian sects today simultaneously proclaim that there will be no more prophets/revelation/scripture, while proclaiming they are God's church with all the keys and knowledge for salvation. Now I want to hasten to add I have a great deal of respect for the various Christian churches – both because they teach many true principles and because they are full of outstanding sincere people. But feel-good fuzziness is not an acceptable approach for seeking salvation, and while delicacy is good for diplomacy, it's disastrous for eternal determination. Either a church is headed by God, or it isn't. Either a church has divine guidance that can be considered as scripture (whether or not it is officially canonized), or it only has human wisdom. Either a prophet speaks, or a council votes. There is either prophetic counsel or political compromise. Direction is from holy inspiration or human intelligence. Doctrinal clarity or debate constantly. If a church denies prophets, revelation, and additional scripture -- it logically denies being God's church that He runs.

By Their Fruits

While Rev. 22:18-19 is misquoted to say that there that will never be any more prophets, revelation, and scripture, we should instead follow what the Lord said about discerning false prophets. In Matthew 7:15-20 the Lord said to beware of false prophets and that by their fruits ye shall know them. It's ironic that even anti-LDS writings frequently extol the highly exemplary lives led by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

SUMMARY

Upon a thorough review of the issues, the common rendering of Revelations 22:18-19, that there will never be more scripture after the Bible, is simply an untenable passage interpretation. Untenable independent of what one's religious beliefs are, including whether one believes there ever will be additional revelation and scripture.

Saving perhaps the best evidence for last, a topic that deserves volumes, the Book of Mormon is in my opinion the most persuasive evidence of further scripture about Christ. My invitation to you is to simply read it yourself!

It is the humble but bold testimony of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that God has restored His church, given additional scriptures, and continued to guide His church once again through modern revelation to a modern prophet and a modern twelve apostles. Just as the first coming of Christ was not an unprophesied event, so this greatly prophesied preparatory era prior to Christ's second coming should also not surprise the serious student of scripture. An unparalleled unique prophetically promised clarion call of such splendorous stupendous significance decidedly deserves real review, not canon-closing cliches sourced from superficial scholarship of Revelations readings!


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 07:40 PM   #111
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
coemgen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Black and White Town
Posts: 3,962
Local Time: 11:11 AM
Wow McPhisto, you've got that copy and paste technique down pat! I'm going to look this stuff over tonight and try to get back to you asap. However, there's a lot of info here and I'm working another late night. Is there anyway we can get back to an actual dialogue, not just throwing other people's writings at each other? I know I started with the letter, but I didn't know it would turn into this. Have a great night!
__________________
coemgen is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 08:00 PM   #112
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Its all good coemgen, but your questions require so much writing, and it takes forever for me to write what I am feeling and what I believe, it would be so much better if we could talk about it face to face!
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-02-2005, 08:02 PM   #113
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


Are your beliefs based on your reading, understanding and interpretation of Scripture, or are they based on Joseph Smith's interpretations?
I dont kow if you know this but we have a living prophet today. The interpretations of the bible come from all the prophets and apostles in the latter days.
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 07:42 AM   #114
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 08:11 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by macphisto23


I dont kow if you know this but we have a living prophet today. The interpretations of the bible come from all the prophets and apostles in the latter days.
And let me guess, the only qualified ones are part of the Mormon church....
__________________
nbcrusader is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 09:31 AM   #115
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


And let me guess, the only qualified ones are part of the Mormon church....
what other religions say that they have a prophet? No one but us

( except I have heard a couple stories of cults with prophets but there either all in jail, or dead)
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 09:53 AM   #116
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 08:11 AM
If a follower of David Koresh has a "burning in the bossom" to know, by the Holy Ghost, that their "prophet" is from God, are they also a "true church" of Christ?
__________________
nbcrusader is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 10:02 AM   #117
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
coemgen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Black and White Town
Posts: 3,962
Local Time: 11:11 AM
It's funny you should bring up Koresh, NB.
This site shows many parallels between Koresh and Smith. It's interesting. And McPhisto, I'm not directing this toward you, I'm sure you're offended by such a comparison, and understandibly so. I'm not endorsing the comparison, I'm just throwing it out as an FYI.
http://www.watchman.org/cults/prophets.htm

I have much to say in response to your posts McPhisto, I'll try to get back to you later in the day if I get a good solid block of free time at work.
__________________
coemgen is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 10:31 AM   #118
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by coemgen
It's funny you should bring up Koresh, NB.
This site shows many parallels between Koresh and Smith. It's interesting. And McPhisto, I'm not directing this toward you, I'm sure you're offended by such a comparison, and understandibly so. I'm not endorsing the comparison, I'm just throwing it out as an FYI.
http://www.watchman.org/cults/prophets.htm

I have much to say in response to your posts McPhisto, I'll try to get back to you later in the day if I get a good solid block of free time at work.
I just read it, very immusing, but everything he uses is out of context against Joseph Smith, it's very easy to defile persons when they only qoute one word here, or one word there and dont know the whole story behind it. I know Joseph Smith was a prophet, and I know we have a living prophet today, Gordon B Hinckley. If you could only listen to him speak, you would know he was a prophet called of GOd. Not by is flattering words, but by his humility, and his heart. 1 Cor.12:28, Eph 2:20 4:13
And by there fruits you will know if they are prophets. Look at Joseph Smiths fruits, and look at Koresh's fruits- huge diffrence.

Amos 3:7
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 10:33 AM   #119
Refugee
 
-macphisto-'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,401
Local Time: 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
If a follower of David Koresh has a "burning in the bossom" to know, by the Holy Ghost, that their "prophet" is from God, are they also a "true church" of Christ?
It is true the Holy Ghost can confirm the truth (burning of the bosom) , and when you feel it you will know if its of God or of another. But also by theref ruits you will know if they are truly of God.
__________________
-macphisto- is offline  
Old 02-03-2005, 10:36 AM   #120
Blue Crack Addict
 
nbcrusader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,071
Local Time: 08:11 AM
Well, a follower of Koresh could "know David Koresh was a prophet". The follower could also see Koresh's fruits and dismiss criticism as a failure to understand.

While the belief systems may be different, both can claim to be the "true church" of Christ.
__________________

__________________
nbcrusader is offline  
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:11 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com