Sunday, September 28, 2008

Worshipping a Different Jesus?

One Lord...One Faith by Mark E. Peterson on P53 Last full paragraph through the 5th full paragraph on page 54
"The scripture says there can be but one Lord. Are there more in the churches of today?

"In Present day Christendom there are various Lords and Gods. They differ from one sect to another. One believes in a God described as universal intelligence or mind, without body, parts or passions -- not a person -- just mind, or intelligence. When we die, it is said, our minds are merged into the universal intelligence, and that constitutes immortality. Is that the Christian God?

"Another says there is one God with three means of expression, or three names. At one time he appears as the Father, at another time, as the Son, and as the Holy Ghost at still a third time. But he is only one God, and yet not one God, but three, only one, and he is incomprehensible!

"When they speak of Christ some say he is identical to the Father, some say he still has his resurrected body, others say he has laid it aside, claiming that having a body is not compatible with the celestial order.

"The more we study Christendom as we know it, the more we realize the importance of our finding out for ourselves which church is right, so that we will not be among those to be address by the savior when he says: 'Depart from me, I never knew you, ' even though we may have cried out 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name done many wonderful works?' (Matt. 7:21-23).

"We must choose the true way of salvation, for otherwise we may find ourselves on the broad way which leads to destruction."

These paragraphs made me reflect on times when I have been accused of not being Christian because I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As I have assured them that I believed in the Savior they said that our church believes in a different Jesus, so we are not Christian. As stated in these paragraphs between the various denominations of Christianity you find all sorts of different Jesus' and different God's being worshiped.

The question is would Christ affiliate himself with Christianity if he returned today?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Father, Son, and Holy Ghost

The seventh chapter of the book One Lord...One Faith is titled "The Nature of God" has scripture after scripture on why Father, Son, and Holy Ghost being the same being is not scriptural. He uses several versions of the Bible to help illustrate. He also includes his own commentary on the subject. I have included some of them below. They show Jesus talking to the Father or about the Father doing something or about sending the Holy Ghost. It seems clear that these are separate beings that are show to be together in the same place at the same time.

Luke 10:21-22
Matthew 26:39, 42, 44
Matthew 19:16, 17
Luke 2:49, 52
John 7:16-17
Acts 7:55-56
John 14:16-17
John 14:25-26
John 15:26
John 16:7-8

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Not Just A Suggestion

I was listening to the First Presidency Message in this month's Ensign and came across this paragraph:
"First, the Holy Ghost remains with us only if we stay clean and free from the love of the things of the world. A choice to be unclean will repel the Holy Ghost. The Spirit dwells only with those who choose the Lord over the world. “Be ye clean” (3 Nephi 20:41; D&C 38:42) and love God with all your “heart, … might, mind, and strength” (D&C 59:5) are not suggestions but commandments. And they are necessary to the companionship of the Spirit, without which we cannot be one."

He quoted some things that we are told to do in the scriptures. He noted that they are not suggestions, but commandments.

I have often felt that the crowd that says all we have to do to be "saved" is to say that we accept Jesus ignores that he has commanded us to do things more than just recognize that He is the Savior. Yet I also find that we Latter-day Saints at times treat the scriptures or the words of the prophets as suggestions as well.

Is sitting in a parked car alone with a person of the opposite sex wrong even if we don't violate the law of chastity? The prophets have counseled us not to do that. Is it a suggestion of a commandment?

What about making out when you are not married? You have not broken the law of chastity, but what have the prophets said?

"We must clearly explain to our children that passionate kissing and “making out” should be left until after marriage. Too many young couples falsely believe that because they are dating or engaged they can relax these constraints. Yet it is during this emotion-filled time that the greatest care should be taken to build and preserve a virtuous relationship.

“'When the unmarried yield to the lust that induces intimacies and indulgence, they have permitted the body to dominate and have placed the spirit in chains. It is unthinkable that anyone could call this love.' (Spencer W. Kimball, 'Love vs. Lust,' in 1965 Speeches of the Year, Provo, Utah: Brigham Young University, 1966, p. 9.)"
(From the December 1986 Ensign Talking with Your Children about Moral Purity)

Are their words a suggestion or a commandment?

Is watching rated R movies wrong, even though there is not specifically a temple recommend question asking if you watch rated R movies? The prophets have counseled us not to do that. Is it a suggestion of a commandment?

Elder Cree-L Kofford Of the Seventyin his July 1998 Ensign article Marriage in the Lord’s Way, Part Two
"All too often, we get ourselves enmeshed in the process of trying to understand why God gave us a particular commandment. We want to rationalize. I don’t know where that is more evident than in watching movies. Young people know they should not watch R- or X-rated movies, and yet time after time I hear them say, 'Well it’s only rated R because it’s violent.' What difference does it make why it is rated R? The fact is, a prophet of God has said not to go to R-rated movies (see, for example, Ezra Taft Benson, “To the ‘Youth of the Noble Birthright,’ ” Ensign, May 1986, 45). That ought to be good enough."

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Remember the Sabbath Day, to Keep It Holy.

Exodus 20
7 Thou shalt not take the aname of the LORD thy God in bvain; for the LORD will not hold him cguiltless that dtaketh his name in vain.
8 Remember the asabbath day, to keep it bholy.
9 aSix days shalt thou blabour, and do all thy work:
10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy astranger that is within thy gates:
11 For in asix days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD bblessed the sabbath day, and challowed it.

In Exodus 31:16 the Lord states that it is a "perpetual covenant". define perpetual as "continuing or enduring forever; everlasting." Verse 17 reenforces this definition in this context: "It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever"
16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual acovenant.
17 It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in asix days the LORD bmade heaven and earth, and on the cseventh day he drested, and was erefreshed.

Verse 13 also states:
 13 Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my asabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that yemay know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you.

Elder Ezra Taft Benson quoted President George Albert Smith, "much of the sorrow and distress that is afflicting and will continue to afflict mankind is traceable to the fact that they have ignored his [God's] admonition to keep the Sabbath day holy" (Conference Report, Oct. 1935, p. 120; quoted in "Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy," Ensign, May 1971, 7).

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Why Christ "...Gave Some Apostles; and Some Prophets..."

In Eph. 4: 11 Paul states of Christ:
11 And he agave some, bapostles; and some, cprophets; and some, devangelists; and some, epastors and fteachers;

Why did he set up these offices in his Church?

Verse 12 states that these offices were:
"For the aperfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the bedifying of the body of Christ: "

Verse 13 states the duration that these offices would be part of his Church.
"Till we all come in the aunity of the faith, and of the bknowledge of the Son of God, unto a cperfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: "

One could hardly call the state of Christendom today "the unity of faith".

Verse 14 states another purpose of these offices:
"That we henceforth be no more achildren, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of bdoctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;"

These offices were so that there would be an authority as to what the truth is when individuals or congregations disputed the meaning of scriptures.

The scriptures also give us direction as to how church leaders are called.
Heb. 5: 4
4 And no man taketh this ahonour unto himself, but he that is bcalled of God, as was cAaron.

People don't just decide that they are going to be take on one of these offices they must be called of God as Aaron was. Aaron did not go to school to study to lea the people. He was not chosen by the congregation. He was not able to be fired by the congregation. He was called by The Prophet of God and that prophet laid his hands upon him to bestow the responsibility on him.

When Jesus died he left the apostles. He did not leave the individuals with the Holy Ghost alone to figure out God's doctrine. The Holy Ghost only guides for what you have stewardship over. That which God has given you stewardship over, not what you chose to take stewardship over or what a congregation hires you to have stewardship over.

Eph 2:19-20
19 Now therefore ye are no more astrangers and foreigners, but bfellowcitizens with the csaints, and of the dhousehold of God;
20 And are built upon the foundation of the aapostles and bprophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief ccorner stone;

You don't remove the foundation anymore than you would the corner stone.