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LDS defend the faith as Christian
The Salt Lake Tribune ^ | 10/07/07 | By Peggy Fletcher Stack

Posted on 10/08/2007 7:49:32 AM PDT by colorcountry

Not only is Mormonism a Christian faith, it is the truest form of Christianity, said speaker after speaker on the first day of the 177th Semiannual LDS General Conference. LDS authorities were responding to the allegation that Mormonism isn't part of Christianity. Made by different mainline Protestant and Catholic churches and repeated constantly during coverage of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, the claim is based on Mormonism's beliefs about God, its rejection of ancient ideas about the Trinity still widely accepted, and the LDS Church's extra-biblical scriptures. "It is not our purpose to demean any person's belief nor the doctrine of any religion," said Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland in the afternoon session. "But if one says we are not Christians because we do not hold a fourth- or fifth-century view of the Godhead, then what of those first [Christians], many of whom were eye-witnesses of the living Christ, who did not hold such a view either?"

{snip}

The day's sermons included many familiar themes, including the importance of faith, the need for pure thoughts and actions, avoiding pornography reaching out to neighbors and eliminating spiritual procrastination. Hinckley talked about the destructive nature of anger in marriages, on the road, and in life, urging Mormons to "control your tempers, to put a smile upon your faces, which will erase anger; speak with words of love and peace, appreciation and respect."


TOPICS: Current Events; Other Christian
KEYWORDS: boggsforgovernor; christians; denialofthetrinity; hatemongering; heresy; joinarealchurch; ldschurch; mormonbashing; notrinitynochristian; sorrynotickynowashy; trinty; unchristianbahavior
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From Wikipedia:

In Mormonism, a general conference is a meeting meant for instruction of all members of the Latter Day Saint faith. General conferences have been a regular part of the Latter Day Saint movement since June 9, 1830, when Joseph Smith, Jr. organized the first general conference in Fayette, New York. It included a gathering of only 27 members of the two-month-old Church of Christ.

1 posted on 10/08/2007 7:49:34 AM PDT by colorcountry
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To: colorcountry

bttt


2 posted on 10/08/2007 8:12:12 AM PDT by JamesP81
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To: colorcountry
"But if one says we are not Christians because we do not hold a fourth- or fifth-century view of the Godhead, then what of those first [Christians], many of whom were eye-witnesses of the living Christ, who did not hold such a view either?"

I guess this is not a caucus thread, right?

Ok, well assuming it isn't then I'd like someone to explain just how the 4th/5th century understanding of the Trinity was in any substantial way different from that of the 1st.

3 posted on 10/08/2007 8:21:56 AM PDT by Claud
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To: colorcountry

Gosh, that’s silly. Elementary theology: a religion that insists in only one true God is not the same as a religion that insists that there are many true gods.

Duh.


4 posted on 10/08/2007 8:23:06 AM PDT by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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To: Claud

This is not a caucus thread and is open for discussion.

I too would like to see how 4th/5th century trinitarians differed from first century understanding.

Ummm, they have yet to clearly point that out. I would think more Christians would defend the allegation that Christianity was polluted by the concept of the Trinity.....but alas.....


5 posted on 10/08/2007 8:27:13 AM PDT by colorcountry (If the plain sense makes sense, seek no other sense, lest you get nonsense! ~ J. Vernon McGee)
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To: colorcountry

Glossary on other church bodies bearing the “Church of Christ” name

1.
“mainstream” or “mainline” Churches of Christ: Fundamentalist, conservative group of autonomous congregations. Major universities affiliated with them are Abilene Christian
U., David Lipscomb U., Pepperdine U., etc.

2.
International Churches of Christ:
An offshoot of the mainline Churches of Christ; more intense about
“discipling”; has had to face “cultic” charges at some colleges/universities
where the church members often recruit members.

3.
United Churches of Christ: a MUCH more liberal church body as compared
to those above. Obama is probably their most visible church member at
this time.


6 posted on 10/08/2007 8:29:25 AM PDT by VOA
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To: BibChr

Well, I think they have every right to call themselves Christian despite their unorthodoxy on the Trinity. Everyone calls Arians Christians, don’t they? And they denied the Trinity.

I am less perturbed by the name than the theology. :)


7 posted on 10/08/2007 8:35:38 AM PDT by Claud
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To: VOA

I often point out the the People’s Republic of China is hardly a Republic government.


8 posted on 10/08/2007 8:36:10 AM PDT by colorcountry (If the plain sense makes sense, seek no other sense, lest you get nonsense! ~ J. Vernon McGee)
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To: colorcountry; FastCoyote; MHGinTN; Pan_Yans Wife; svcw; Elsie; aMorePerfectUnion; Colofornian; ...

Pingaling


9 posted on 10/08/2007 8:42:58 AM PDT by greyfoxx39 ( Mexico does not stop at its border, Wherever there is a Mexican, there is Mexico. Calderon)
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To: Claud

Can I call you a girl?


10 posted on 10/08/2007 8:44:47 AM PDT by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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To: greyfoxx39
Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod - CTCR Reports
Religious Organizations and Movements:  Mormonism

11 posted on 10/08/2007 8:50:46 AM PDT by VxH (One if by Land, Two if by Sea, and Three if by Wire Transfer)
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To: colorcountry; JamesP81; Kolokotronis; Claud; VOA; greyfoxx39; BibChr
"But if one says we are not Christians because we do not hold a fourth- or fifth-century view of the Godhead, then what of those first [Christians], many of whom were eye-witnesses of the living Christ, who did not hold such a view either?"

Trying to figure out who falls into what category of Christian is made even more confusing by the fact at most Christians of all denominations consider themselves the one true catholic (universal) and orthodox (correct) church - though many of them admit to not being apostolic.

I am thinking maybe we Christians should come up with a new way of identifying each other's beliefs - our commonalities and differences - I am talking about the ecumenical councils - churches can identify themselves as to how many of the ecumenical councils they uphold as part of their faith.

The Orthodox recognize 7 ecumenical councils and so do the Catholics - but the Catholics have added more ecumenical councils since then (21 in all!!) that the Orthodox do not recognize so the Catholic church would be Church of the 21 councils and so on.

I think the Mormons would be the Church of zero councils since they accept none of the declarations of those councils on the nature of Christ and his teachings as far as I know.

12 posted on 10/08/2007 9:03:16 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: VxH

See my post above - how many Ecumenical Council precepts does the Lutherans accept/acknowledge?


13 posted on 10/08/2007 9:04:08 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: BibChr

It’s interesting. I’ve a few Mormon friends and to a person they all consider themselves to be Christian. I also have a number of Christian friends - from Catholic to Episcopalian to Evenagelical - and they all consider Mormons to be cultists and/or blasphemers.

I’m neither Christian or Mormon, but I do find the debate to be absolutley fascinating.


14 posted on 10/08/2007 9:09:02 AM PDT by DangerDanger ("Libertarianism is the Heart and Soul of Conservatism." - Ronald Reagan)
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To: greyfoxx39; Elsie
Might be a good place to post the following comparative chart from http://www.mormoninfo.org/ :

Some Differences between Mormonism and Christianity


Mormonism Christianity
What is the Church?

The LDS Church is the only true church.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church (Doctrine and Covenants [D&C] 1:30); all other churches are "wrong," all their creeds an "abomination," and all who profess them are "corrupt" (Joseph Smith, History 1:19, Pearl of Great Price). One either belongs to "the church of the Lamb of God" or to "the church of the devil" (1 Nephi 14:10). Joseph Smith taught that everybody but Mormons will be damned (History of the Church 3:28), and the Book of Mormon teaches that if an individual doesn't repent in "this life" then one is sealed to the devil and "this is the final state of the wicked" (Alma 34:32-35). For LDS, this Book of Mormon passage typically means that apostates or these sons of perdition who willfully deny Christ and His Church after being a part of it end up in "outer-darkness" forever excluded from the presence of God in His celestial kingdom. But depending on how good the other non-members are in this life and the next determines their place in one of two lower heavenly kingdoms or "degrees of glory"--the telestial and terrestrial kingdoms--both of which are still outside the presence of God in His kingdom (D&C 76). Whether there may be any possible advancement out of these kingdoms still depends on acceptance of the LDS Church as the only true church.

The church is a body of various believers and groups of believers.

The one true church is the invisible, spiritual, and universal body of Christ in heaven and on earth made up of all those true believers from various local denominations or visible churches. The body is an organism, not an external organization. Unity in this body does not demand complete uniformity in its various manifestations. God loves diversity. Yet the church's unity is in Christ, who is the vine. People in various denominations who are committed to the Vine are the branches; no one particular manifestation of the church is the vine (Matthew 16:18; John 15:5; Acts 15:35-41, 20:28; 1 Corinthians 11:19, 12:13ff.; and Ephesians 4:1-13).

 

 

 

 

What is divine salvation?

Divine salvation is unconditional for resurrection and conditional for eternal life.

In one sense, salvation is universal immortality and resurrection by grace alone, and is given to everyone except apostates. In another sense, salvation is eternal life or exaltation into the highest kingdom. The latter is dependent on grace through faith and one's works (2 Ne. 25:23; D&C 76:40-44; and Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 669-71).

Divine salvation is always conditional.

Divine salvation is always from sin and its consequence of separation from God. This salvation is always conditioned upon faith. Until this occurs, God considers the individual dead. When this salvation occurs, one has eternal life (Jn. 5:24; Romans 5; Eph. 2:1-10; and 1 Jn. 5:10-13).

 

Are there other Gods?

There are many Gods for other worlds, and each God is equal to the God of this world in terms of His nature.

There are many gods who create and rule over other worlds, and on those worlds, worship excludes the God of our world. So there is only one God for us, and this God is typically referred to as the Heavenly Father. Mormons may also speak of the term "God" in reference to "the Godhead," which is a team of separate Gods (McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 576-7; Joseph Fielding Smith, ed., The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 346-7 [pre-2002 edition]; Abraham 4:1, Pearl of Great Price; Gospel Principles, 245 [1997 edition], and 302; "God," LDS Bible Dictionary; and Blake Ostler, "Review of The Mormon Concept of God: A Philosophical Analysis by Francis J. Beckwith and Stephen E. Parrish," FARMS Review of Books [Provo, UT: FARMS, 1996], 99-146).

There is only one God for all worlds.

There is only one God who created and rules over everything in existence. LDS simply devalue and weaken God when they think that He did not create something like some other world (Genesis 1:1; Deuteronomy 4:39; Nehemiah 9:6; Psalm 96:5; Isaiah 40:12-26; 43:10; 44:6, 8, and 24; Jn. 1:1-3; and 17:3).

 

 

 

 

The Trinity?

The Trinity means three separate Gods, who are one in their nature and become one in purpose.

The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three separate gods, who are one in purpose and nature, but not in a being they share eternally (Ibid; Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 372 [pre-2002 edition]). There was a time when the person of the Father (Elohim) was without the person of the Son (Jehovah) as His Son. Thus, there was a time in which Elohim was not the Father.

The Trinity means three inseparable Persons, who are eternally God in purpose, nature, and being.

The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three distinct or different persons, who are eternally and inseparably one in purpose, nature, and being (Ibid.; Mt. 3:16; 4:10; and 28:16-20). So the Father is not the same person as the Son, and the Son is not the same person as the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is not the same person as the Father, but nonetheless, each Person eternally makes up the only Being of God there is.

Are men and God the same nature or species?

Men and God are of the same nature or species.

The nature of these gods is identical to the nature of man, and as such these humans had to become gods; they haven't always been gods (Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 345 [pre-2002 edition]; Thomas C. Romney, The Life of Lorenzo Snow, 46; D&C 76:23-4; and Abraham 3:18-28).

Men and God are not of the same nature or species.

God has His own unique nature that man, a created being by definition, cannot ever have. God is God by nature, and not by obtainment (Ps. 90:2; Ezekiel 28:2 and 9; Hosea 11:9; Acts 14:15; Galatians 4:8; and 2 Peter 1:3-4).

 

Does God in His nature have flesh and bones?

God is an exalted man with flesh and bones.

God the Father and Jesus Christ have tangible bodies of flesh and bones, but the Holy Ghost is a personage of spirit. Personages of spirit are still material with a certain form or shape, but they are not as tangible as the bodies of those who are sent to a mortal planet (Ibid.; D&C 130:22; 131:7-8; and "Spirit" in the LDS Bible Dictionary).

God is not an exalted man with flesh and bones.

Since He is the Creator of all things outside of Himself (e.g., the entire material universe), God is too big for a body. He does not need a body or anything else to operate anywhere in all of creation; He is all powerful. And since He is all powerful, He can take any type of form or nature to show up any way He wants to (1 Kings 8:27; Jeremiah 23:24; Luke 3:22; and Jn. 4:21-24).

Can human beings become Gods for other worlds as God is God for this world?

Human beings may become Gods for other worlds as God is God for this world.

Worthy Mormons may become gods to create, rule over and receive worship from their own worlds some day. They will do this exclusively as the god or the team of gods for that world or that set of worlds (like the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are for this world or this set of worlds), and thus the God of this world will not perform those functions there (Ibid; D&C 76:50-58 and 95, 132:15-23, 29, and 37; and Gospel Principles, 302 [1997 edition]).

Human beings cannot become Gods for other worlds as God is God for all worlds.

When all believers become what some Christians such as C. S. Lewis call "gods" in heaven (although the Bible never uses this language of glorified individuals), they are still dependent and human "gods," and not God by nature, who alone is eternally the Author and Sustainer of literally all that is outside Himself. He is the only God in this fundamental sense of the term (Ibid.; and Lewis, Mere Christianity [N.Y.: Macmillan, 1952], vi, 160, 172).

Was the God of this world once a man who became God?

The God of this world was once a man who became God.

God is an exalted man, who needed to do certain things in order to become God for this world (Ibid.; James Talmage, Articles of Faith, 430; and Gospel Principles, 41% [1997 edition]).

The God of this world is the God for all worlds, so He never was a man who had to become God.

God has always been God, and thus is not so needy (Ibid.).

 

Does the Father have a Father?

The Heavenly Father has a Heavenly Father before Him.

God the Father has a Father whom He followed as Jesus had followed His Father in order to become a god (Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 373 [pre-2002 edition]).

There was no Heavenly Father before the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

There is no other God before God. He is not so weak that He needed to serve and receive counsel from some other God in order to become God; He always was God (Ps. 90:2; Isa. 40:12-26; and 43:10).

Does God need a wife to become God?

God needs a wife to become God.

God the Father has at least one wife that He needed in order to become exalted to Godhood, and by at least one wife we on this world were all literally born as spirit children prior to taking on our tangible bodies of flesh and bones via our mortal parents (McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 516-7; Brigham Young, The Journal of Discourses 1:50; Gospel Principles, 15 [1997 edition]; and the popular hymn "O My Father").

 

God does not need a wife to become God.

Since God is not a man by nature it is impossible for Him as the eternal God to even enter into a human marital relationship that He would need to become God and sexually produce us. It is just as impossible for God to lie. He does not need anything, let alone a wife, to become God. If it were even possible for the Father to strive to exaltation, then we would expect God's courtship and marriage to be a perfect one in which He received counsel from the other partner(s). But what kind of God would this be? As the All Perfect Being by nature, it is also impossible for God to receive any counsel (Ibid; 1 Kings 8:27; and Hebrews 6:18).

Is there anything that the Father did not create?

There are things that the Father did not create.

Thus God the Father did not create the planet that His Father had already created. No God for any world created all worlds. No God for any world created intelligence, matter, or the laws that govern them. These are eternal. Any person, including a God for any world, eternally existed as intelligence, and not as God (Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 373 [pre-2002 edition]; D&C 93:29-33; 131:7-8; and Abraham 3:18-28).

There is nothing that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit did not create.

There is only one Being who created and rules over everything in existence. LDS simply devalue and weaken God when they think that He did not create something like some other world (Gen. 1:1; Deut. 4:39; Isa. 40:12-26; 43:10; 44:6, 8, and 24; Jn. 1:1-3; and Acts 17:24-28).

Is there anything that the Son did not create?

There are things that the Son did not create.

Jesus being the literal son of exalted human gods obviously did not create all things either. For example, He did not create the planet He was born on as a spirit child (Ibid.; Gospel Principles, 17-20 [1997 edition]; and 27-29).

 

 

There is nothing that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit did not create.

Prior to becoming man, Jesus existed as "the only begotten God" (Jn. 1:18, New American Standard [NAS] and in the best Greek manuscripts). As such, He created everything that was ever created from the very beginning (Jn. 1:1-3). When LDS relativize His creation to only concerning the things of this world or this set of worlds--i.e., not literally all worlds, this devalues and cheapens Jesus, who has not only the nature of man (1 Timothy 2:5), but also the nature of "God over all blessed forever" (Rom. 9:5, emphasis added).

Are Jesus and Lucifer spirit-brothers?

Jesus and Lucifer are spirit-brothers.

Jesus was the first one born of heavenly parents, and Lucifer was a younger sibling. Jesus is referred to as Lucifer's, as well as our, elder brother in the pre-earth life (Ibid.; and Milton R. Hunter, The Gospel through the Ages, 15).

Jesus created Lucifer.

For LDS to think that Christ is simply our and Lucifer's elder brother in some supposed pre-earth life is blasphemous devaluing of Christ's divine nature. Christ may rightly be referred to as a brother in our humanity, but in addition to that, He is our Creator... and not simply of our bodies (Ibid.; Colossians 1:13-18; Heb. 1:2 and 6-14; and 2:6-18).

Has Jesus always been God?

Jesus has not always been God.

Jesus, like all other gods before Him, had to become a God. He is the literal Son of God like we are children of God, but He's without sin (Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 346-7 [pre-2002 edition]).

Jesus has always been God.

Jesus has always been the only God there is along with the Father and Holy Ghost (Ibid; Isa. 43:10; Mt. 28:19; Jn. 1:1-3 and 14; and 8:56-59).

 

Should the Son receive the same worship as the Father?

The Son should not receive the same worship as the Father.

Jesus is not worshipped equally with the Father, since Jesus is not our begetter. Jesus is not even directly prayed to. Prayer is directed only to the Father in the name of Jesus (Gospel Principles, 41 [1997 edition]; McConkie, BYU Devotional [March 2, 1982], 17, 19, and 20).

The Son should receive the same worship as the Father.

Since Jesus is God by nature, He is worshipped equally with the Father. Jesus receives both worship and prayer, and we are commanded to do so (Mt. 4:10; 28:16-20; Jn. 5:18-23; 14:14, NAS and in the best Greek manuscripts; Acts 7:59; 1 Cor. 1:2; and 1 Jn. 5:13-15).

Who is the Holy Ghost?

The Holy Ghost is a man and son of God.

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that the Holy Ghost is a spirit man, a spirit son of God the Father. It is fundamental Church doctrine that God is the Father of the spirits of all men and women, that Jesus is literally God's Son both in the spirit and in the flesh, and that the Holy Ghost is a personage of spirit separate and distinct from both the Father and the Son. The Holy Ghost is the third member of the Eternal Godhead, and is identified also as the Holy Spirit, Spirit of God, Spirit of the Lord, and the comforter" (Encyclopedia of Mormonism 2:649; cf. D&C 130:22-23; and "Holy Ghost" in the LDS Bible Dictionary).

The Holy Ghost is God by nature.

Since the Holy Ghost is the inseparable third person of the only Being of God there is, He is not a man by nature that became exalted into a separate god for a Godhead team (2 Samuel 23:2-3; Mt. 28:19; Acts 5:3-4; and Acts 13:2).

 

 

 

Is God a racist?

God curses certain individuals with dark skin.

The races are determined by how worthy individuals were prior to this mortal life. Blacks were not as faithful in their first estate. The Book of Mormon teaches that God cursed certain Israelite American Indians with dark skin, and this was meant to keep them from interbreeding with their white brethren. This scripture also teaches that God blessed some who repented with white skin. Nothing concerning the revelation in 1978 to give "all worthy males members" the priesthood invalidates these beliefs (Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation 1:61-7; McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 527-8; Alma 3:6-9; 2 Ne. 5:21-4; and 3 Ne. 2:14-6).

God does not curse anyone with dark skin.

God blesses humanity with different colors of skin, and no skin color is more favorable to Him than another. Race is not the real issue anyway, for we are all one in Christ (Gal. 3:28).

 

 

 

Did Christ die for all sins?

Christ did not die for all sins.

Christ did not atone for the murderer, since there is no forgiveness for him "in this world, nor in the world to come." Christ also did not pay for more than a one-time offense of adultery, since such violators cannot be forgiven either (D&C 42:18 and 25-29). Actually, according to one apostle, Christ atoned simply for Adam's sin, and left "us responsible only for our own sins." This apostle goes on to quote the 2nd Article of Faith that claims "men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam's transgression" (Le Grand Richards, A Marvelous Work and a Wonder [1976], 98). Other LDS prophets have taught that there are certain "sins" that one may commit that are beyond the atonement of the Son of God, and one's own blood must be shed in such cases (Young, The Journal of Discourses 3:247; 4:53-54; 4:219-20; and Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation 1:133-136).

Christ did die for all sins.

Christ atoned for all sins (Adam's as well as everyone else's). The Lord Jesus took the punishment of everyone on the cross. The debt we could never pay has been completely paid by the Lamb of God, and to those who receive this gift, they are declared "justified" or "not guilty." This is the good news (the gospel) for everyone, including the adulterer and the murderer (Isa. 53:3-12; Mt. 18:21-22; Rom. 3:24; 4:5; 5:1-2; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 15:3; 2 Cor. 5:14-21; 1 Pt. 2:24; and 1 Jn. 1:8-2:2).

 

 

What role do good works play with our standing before God?

Good works are meritorious for right standing before God.

Good works are a necessary requirement of salvation and right standing before God (1 Ne. 3:7; 2 Ne. 25:23; Alma 5:27-28; 11:37; 34:33-35; Moroni 10:32; D&C 1:24-33; 25:15-16; 42:18-29; 58:34-43; 82:5-7; 3rd Article of Faith; Gospel Principles, 74-78 [1997 edition]; and 122-127).

Good works are not meritorious for right standing before God.

Salvation is a free gift that must be received through faith alone, and this automatically is demonstrated by the overall good life produced by it (Ibid.; Rom. 11:6; Gal. 3:11, 23-26, and 5:6; Eph. 2:8-10; and 1 Jn. 5:10-13).

 

Baptism for the dead?

Baptism for the dead is required.

Baptism in place of the dead is an essential ordinance done in LDS temples on behalf of those who died not receiving the benefit of LDS baptism (Gospel Principles, 255-262 [1997 edition]). Joseph Smith said, "The greatest responsibility in this world that God has laid upon us is to seek after our dead" (Fielding Smith, The Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 356 [pre-2002 edition]).

Baptism for the dead is not Christian.

Baptism for the dead is done by those outside of Christianity, since the Apostle Paul made a contrast between what "they" do and what "we" do. Paul said that even those who do baptism for the dead believe in the resurrection. How much more should we, who do not baptize for the dead and are led by apostles who were eyewitnesses of Christ's resurrection, believe in the resurrection (1 Cor. 15:29-30).

The Priesthood?

The Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthoods are offered to worthy male members.

There are two forms of the priesthood: the Aaronic (the lesser one) and the Melchizedek (the greater one). Without the authority of the priesthood no man can see God and live. It is available for all worthy male members of at least a certain age, who desire to act legally in the name of the Lord. This was extended to those males with black ancestry in 1978 (D&C, Official Declaration--2; 84:6ff.; and Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation 3:80).

 

 

The Aaronic priesthood was done away at the cross and the Melchizedek priesthood is unique to Christ.

The Aaronic priesthood was done away at the crucifixion of Christ, since He has become our permanent high priest. There is no more need for Levitical priests to offer imperfect sacrifices on behalf of the people in the temple. Jesus alone is worthy to hold the Melchizedek priesthood. Any believer today who has been called out of darkness into the light, regardless of age, race, or sex, is a member of the holy and royal priesthood. The believer operates in the highest authority that is offered today, viz., that of being a child of the Lord Omnipotent. Christians have the true priesthood, since they have the true God who gives it to them (Jn. 1:12; Gal. 3:26-29; 1 Tim. 2:5; Heb. 4:14; 5:9-10; 7:11-8:2; 9:24; and 1 Pt. 2:5 and 9).

The Bible?

The Bible is unreliable and incomplete for faith.

The Bible is the word of God only as it is translated correctly (8th Article of Faith). Evidently, it was not translated very well since Joseph Smith's translation (JST) is quite a bit different from all other versions (also cf. 1 Nephi 13:23-42 where the Bible is corrupted after the founding 12 apostles). Nonetheless, LDS use the King James Version. LDS also have three other books of Scripture--the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price (cf. 2 Nephi 29:3-14). Joseph Smith taught that only LDS believe the Bible and "all other sects believe their interpretations of the Bible, and their creeds" (History of the Church 3:28).

The Bible is reliable and complete for faith.

The Bible claims to be the word of God, and the Bible--including Jesus--promised that it would be faithfully preserved. The general consistency of the Septuagint, the Dead Sea Scrolls, the thousands of other ancient manuscripts, lectionaries, and citations from early Church Fathers all attest to this fact. The Bible is by far the best attested work of antiquity. The Bible is archeologically, historically, prophetically, and scientifically accurate. And since the Bible contradicts all the other scriptures of the LDS Church, they should all be damned (Ps. 12:6-7; Proverbs 30:6; Isa. 40:7-8; Mt. 5:17-19; 24:35; Jn. 10:35; 17:17; and Gal. 1:6-9).


15 posted on 10/08/2007 9:14:34 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: DangerDanger

Well, anyone can call himself anything in theory, can’t he? I can call myself young, slim, and not-bald.

It’s only in regards to religion that we complete lose all ability for rational thought, which in itself is very un-Biblical.

On this, I keep it simple. The Bible emphatically teaches that there is one God. Christians affirm this teaching, Mormons deny it.

Can a religion that affirms many true gods be the same as a religion that affirms one and only one?

It isn’t rocket science.


16 posted on 10/08/2007 9:15:53 AM PDT by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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To: colorcountry; Claud
With all due respect to Mormon’s, an ‘unorthodox’ view of the Trinity is the least of their divergences from the faith taught by Jesus Christ.

The Bible makes the claim that it is Truth (whether this is true or not I put entirely up to the individual reader to decide, but I affirm that it has proven itself thus to me). The Book of Mormon contains many historically impossible claims (even after the reportedly 4000+ revisions that have been made to it since 1830), including an iron, steel, and horse using civilization that stretched from sea to sea circa 600 BC.

"It can be stated definitely that there is no connection between the archeology of the New World and the subject matter of the Book of Mormon. There is no correspondence whatever between archaeological sites and cultures as revealed by scientific investigations and as recorded in the Book of Mormon, hence the book cannot be regarded as having any historical value from the standpoint of the aboriginal peoples of the New World." (F.H.H. Roberts, Jr, Smithsonian Institution, 1951)

From a theological standpoint, Mormonism also claims that
a) God was a man
“I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea, and take away the veil, so that you may see. He was once a man like us; yea, that God himself, the father of us all, dwelt on an earth, the same as Jesus Christ Himself did.” (Joseph Smith, quoted in 'LDS History of the Church', Vol. 6, p. 305)
b) Mormons will become Gods and populate their own planets with ‘spirit children’.
“...thus a man and his wife when glorified will have spirit children who eventually will go on an earth like this one we are on and pass through the same kind of experiences, being subject to mortal conditions, and if faithful, then they also will receive the fullness of exaltation and partake of the same blessings. There is no end to this development; it will go on forever. We will become gods and have jurisdiction over the world, and the world will be peopled by our own offspring. We will have an endless eternity for this” (Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. 2, p. 48)

This is far from a complete analysis of the differences between Mormonism and Biblical Christianity. Other noteworthy areas include a view of being Black as punishment for earlier spiritual neutrality on another world, a view that Christ's sacrifice was not fully sufficient for salvation, and that Satan, demons and Christ are actually all 'spirit brothers'.

I do not seek to defame or slander Mormonism in any way, and invite any LDS to correct me on any point I have presented inaccurately. Mormons have every right to believe as they choose, but to claim that they are 'Christian' (meaning 'followers of Christ') is not factual.

There are far too many differences between Mormonism and what is taught to us by Jesus Christ.

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. (John 8:12)

17 posted on 10/08/2007 9:27:05 AM PDT by DragoonEnNoir
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To: BibChr

LOL...nope.

Look BibChr, I’m not gonna dwell on the name. You don’t want to call them Christians, no skin off my nose. Prudential judgment on your part....I think wrong, but whatever.


18 posted on 10/08/2007 9:36:21 AM PDT by Claud
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To: DragoonEnNoir
With all due respect to Mormon’s, an ‘unorthodox’ view of the Trinity is the least of their divergences from the faith taught by Jesus Christ.

!!!

The LEAST?!? I am speechless that a Christian would say such a thing! :O

19 posted on 10/08/2007 9:39:26 AM PDT by Claud
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To: MHGinTN; DangerDanger
No disrespect intended to Mormons but many Christians over the years have compared Joseph Smith's revelations and teachings to that of Islam's Mohammed as if he copied the way Mohammed's revelation story for his own as well as lifting some ideas from the Koran like polygamy.

Others have noted that Adam Smith came from a family with a long history of being folk seers - folk medicine types - dare I say shaman? witches? - and that Smith may have had a predisposition to seeing visions or interpreting events through the now forgotten shamanistic traditions (the English were not always Christians) that Smith then fleshed out by borrowing from the Koran and other sources - especially since it was a way he could earn a living. He used to use his seer ability to tell people were to look for buried treasure - sort of like water witches/dowsers.

It seems from the late 170o to early 1800s Americans in the frontier areas there was in a fever about buried treasures - probably the result of American settlers stumbling upon Indian burial mounds.

20 posted on 10/08/2007 9:39:41 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: MHGinTN
Small quibble....but I think that list would be more aptly titled differences between Mormonism and (some forms of) Protestant Christianity. You have several stipulations there that would be denied to the hilt by Catholic Christians, Orthodox Christians, and non-Chalcedonian Christians...even some Anglicans.
21 posted on 10/08/2007 9:42:52 AM PDT by Claud
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To: BibChr
Can a religion that affirms many true gods be the same as a religion that affirms one and only one? It isn’t rocket science.

Well, there I'd agree with you actually. For just the name "Christian" I can overlook the heterodoxy on the Trinity, but the polytheism, well....that's a problem right there.

22 posted on 10/08/2007 9:44:38 AM PDT by Claud
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To: BibChr

“Can a religion that affirms many true gods be the same as a religion that affirms one and only one?”

Despite loving the debate for the sake of the debate, I agree with your conclusion. Please note that in my previous posting I did say I was neither Christian or Mormon - thus differentiating between the two.


23 posted on 10/08/2007 9:46:06 AM PDT by DangerDanger ("Libertarianism is the Heart and Soul of Conservatism." - Ronald Reagan)
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To: Terirem

Welcome, n00bie. Watch your back if you’re going to address the heresies in Mormonism ... Mormonism Apologists will see your posts as a threat to their cultish belief system and zero in to denigrate you and your offerings. There is a group known as the Flying Inmans which try to keep the threads focused upon Mormonism rather than the individual adherents caught up in that religion.


24 posted on 10/08/2007 9:49:16 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: DragoonEnNoir
b) Mormons will become Gods and populate their own planets with ‘spirit children’ Were Mormons the first UFO worshiping cult? Islam also can be claimed to be a sort of UFO cult since the Kaba stone is said to be a meteorite/fallen star that was venerated. Scientology can also be claimed to be a UFO centered cult.
25 posted on 10/08/2007 9:50:16 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: MHGinTN

I address all my comments in the spirit of a lay scholarship and understanding - no offenses are intended.

I would appreciate comments on the validity of my remarks pro or con in that spirit.


26 posted on 10/08/2007 9:52:17 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: Elsie

Want to take this one?


27 posted on 10/08/2007 9:52:47 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: Terirem

One can make an excellent case for Islam being a gross heresy of Judeo-Christian background.


28 posted on 10/08/2007 9:54:22 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: MHGinTN

St. John of Damascus thought that ISlam was indeed a continuation of past Christian heresies that were adopted and re-worked by Mohammed for his own purposes.


29 posted on 10/08/2007 9:58:58 AM PDT by Terirem ("As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books" St. John of Damascus)
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To: MHGinTN

Oh yes. Belloc and Chesterton did just that.


30 posted on 10/08/2007 10:02:19 AM PDT by Greg F (Duncan Hunter is a good man.)
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To: Greg F; Terirem
Mormonism and Islam, an essay of comparison by an LDS:

http://www.cumorah.com/muslimsandlatterdaysaints.html

Muslims and Latter-day Saints

David Stewart, Jr.

 

               Latter-day Saints recognize Muslims as brothers and sisters, children of our Heavenly Father, with whom we can find much common ground.  LDS Prophet and Apostle Gordon B. Hinckley stated: “we value our Muslim neighbors across the world.”  Latter-day Saints respect the strong family values and moral accomplishments of Muslims as well as Islamic contributions to science, literature, history, philosophy, medicine, and the arts.  While there are many differences between Muslims and Latter-day Saints in doctrine and practice, we acknowledge these differences with respect rather than criticism.  Latter-day Saints extend a hand of friendship to Muslims everywhere.

 

Muhammad and Revelation

               Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that Muhammad was an inspired teacher raised up by God to teach His word. The Book of Mormon teaches: 'For behold, the Lord doth grant unto all nations, of their own tongue, to teach his word, yea, in wisdom, all that he seeth fit that they should have; therefore, we see that the Lord doth counsel in wisdom, according to that which is just and true' (Alma 29:8).  In a letter written on February 15, 1978, the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declared: “Based upon ancient and modern revelation, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gladly teaches and declares the Christian doctrine that all men and women are brothers and sisters, not only by blood relationship from common mortal progenitors but also as literal spirit children of an Eternal Father. The great religious leaders of the world such as Muhammad, Confucius, and the Reformers...received a portion of God's light. Moral truths were given to them by God to enlighten whole nations and to bring a higher level of understanding to individuals.... Consistent with these truths, we believe that God has given and will give to all peoples sufficient knowledge to help them on their way to eternal salvation, either in this life or in the life to come...  Our message therefore is one of special love and concern for the eternal welfare of all men and women, regardless of religious belief, race, or nationality, knowing that we are truly brothers and sisters because we are sons and daughters of the same Eternal Father.”[1]

               LDS Apostle George Q. Cannon stated: “I believe myself that Mahomed, whom the Christians deride and call a false prophet and stigmatize with a great many epithets --I believe that he was a man raised up by the Almighty, and inspired to a certain extent by Him to effect the reforms which he did in his land, and in the nations surrounding. He attacked idolatry, and restored the great and crowning idea that there is but one God. He taught that idea to his people, and reclaimed them from polytheism and from the heathenish practices into which they had fallen. I believe many men were inspired who lived after him and before him, who, nevertheless, did not have the Holy Priesthood, but were led by the Spirit of God to strive for a better condition of affairs and to live a purer and higher life than those by whom they were surrounded were living. But while this was the case, it was the Spirit of God that did it.”[2]  Latter-day Saints accept all truth, wherever it may be found, as part of our religion -- whether in the Quran or in other good books.

 

God

               Latter-day Saints and Muslims believe that God is just, merciful, all-knowing and all-powerful.  Latter-day Saints recognize the terms God and Allah to refer to the same being in different languages. The Quran teaches: “Allah is He Who created seven Firmaments and of the earth a similar number. Through the midst of them (all) descends His Command: that ye may know that Allah has power over all things, and that Allah comprehends all things in (His) Knowledge” (Quran 65:12, Yusuf Ali edition).  The Book of Mormon teaches: “Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend“ (Mosiah 4:9).

Christ and Muhammad

               The Quran teaches that Jesus (Isa) was a great teacher and prophet sent by God.  Latter-day Saints worship Jesus Christ as the son of God and Savior of the world.  The Quran testifies that Allah sent Isa to teach truth: “And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah” (Quran 5:46).

               The Quran teaches that Jesus should be revered: “Behold! the angels said: ‘O Mary! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a Word from Him: his name will be Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, held in honour in this world and the Hereafter and of (the company of) those nearest to Allah’” (Quran 3:45).  It testifies of the many miracles performed by Jesus.  Sura 3:47-51 states:
               “She said: ‘O my Lord! How shall I have a son when no man hath touched me?’ He said: ‘Even so: Allah createth what He willeth: When He hath decreed a plan, He but saith to it, 'Be,' and it is! And Allah will teach him the Book and Wisdom, the Law and the Gospel, And (appoint him) an apostle to the Children of Israel, (with this message): 'I have come to you, with a Sign from your Lord, in that I make for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, and breathe into it, and it becomes a bird by Allah’s leave: And I heal those born blind, and the lepers, and I quicken the dead, by Allah’s leave; and I declare to you what ye eat, and what ye store in your houses. Surely therein is a Sign for you if ye did believe;  (I have come to you), to attest the Law which was before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (Before) forbidden to you; I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear Allah, and obey me.  It is Allah Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight.'"

               God strengthened Jesus by the Holy Spirit and gave Jesus power to perform miracles, heal the sick, raise the dead.  The Quran states: “Then will Allah say: "O Jesus the son of Mary! Recount My favour to thee and to thy mother. Behold! I strengthened thee with the holy spirit, so that thou didst speak to the people in childhood and in maturity. Behold! I taught thee the Book and Wisdom, the Law and the Gospel and behold!… thou healest those born blind, and the lepers, by My leave. And behold! thou bringest forth the dead by My leave. And behold! I did restrain the Children of Israel from (violence to) thee when thou didst show them the clear Signs...” (Quran 5:110).  Muhammad never claimed to have performed any miracles.

               The Quran further states of Jesus: “He said: ‘I am indeed a servant of Allah. He hath given me revelation and made me a prophet; And He hath made me blessed wheresoever I be, and hath enjoined on me Prayer and Charity as long as I live; (He) hath made me kind to my mother, and not overbearing or miserable; So peace is on me the day I was born, the day that I die, and the day that I shall be raised up to life (again).’ Such (was) Jesus the son of Mary: (it is) a statement of truth, about which they (vainly) dispute” (Quran 19:30-34).

               The Quran teaches that Jesus was taken up to heaven, where he dwells with God: “Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise” (Quran 4:158).  Muhammad’s grave is in Medina today.  In contrast, Muhammad was told to seek forgiveness of his sins: “Know, therefore, that there is no god but Allah, and ask forgiveness for thy fault, and for the men and women who believe…” (47:19, see also 40:55).   Muhammad never claimed to be sinless.

 

Faith, Works, and Judgment

               God will return to judge the world “When the earth is pounded to powder, And thy Lord cometh, and His angels, rank upon rank. ” (Quran 89:21-22).  The Book of Mormon teaches that all men will one day “stand before God to be judged according to the deeds which have been done in the mortal body” (Alma 5:15).  Latter-day Saints strive to “endure to the end” to be found worthy, through Christ’s grace, to return to God (1 Nephi 31:15).

               Both Muhammad and Christ taught that even after doing good works, the grace of God is still necessary.  The Quran teaches: “If Allah were to punish men for their wrong-doing, He would not leave, on the (earth), a single living creature: but He gives them respite for a stated Term: When their Term expires, they would not be able to delay (the punishment) for a single hour, just as they would not be able to anticipate it (for a single hour)” (Quran 16:61)   It continues: “One Day every soul will come up struggling for itself, and every soul will be recompensed (fully) for all its actions, and none will be unjustly dealt with. But verily thy Lord, to those who do wrong in ignorance, but who thereafter repent and make amends, thy Lord, after all this, is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful” (Quran 16:111,119).  The Bible teaches that "God is a merciful God" (Deuteronomy 4:31).  The Book of Mormon prophet Nephi writes: “it is by grace we are saved, after all we can do” (2 Nephi 25:23).

               The Quran and the Book of Mormon teach that God looks upon our actions and our intentions.  The Quran states, “Seest thou one who denies the Judgment (to come)? Then such is the (man) who repulses the orphan (with harshness), and encourages not the feeding of the indigent. So woe to the worshippers who are neglectful of their prayers, those who (want but) to be seen (of men), but refuse (to supply) (even) neighbourly needs” (Quran 107:1-7).  The Book of Mormon teaches, “For behold, if a man being evil giveth a gift, he doeth it grudgingly; wherefore it is counted unto him the same as if he had retained the gift; wherefore he is counted evil before God.  And likewise also is it counted evil unto a man, if he shall pray and not with real intent of heart; yea, and it profiteth him nothing, for God receiveth none such” (Moroni 7:8-9).

               The Quran, Bible, and Book of Mormon all warn against placing our hearts on riches.  The Quran teaches that God’s chastisement comes “because they love the life of this world better than the Hereafter: and Allah will not guide those who reject Faith” (Quran 16:107).   The Bible teaches, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:19-21).

               The Quran teaches: “Who can be better in religion than one who submits his whole self to Allah, does good, and follows the way of Abraham the true in Faith? For Allah did take Abraham for a friend” (Quran 4:125). Jesus taught, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40).

               The Quran and the Book of Mormon both teach the importance of obeying God’s laws.  The Quran teaches, “Then, he whose balance (of good deeds) will be (found) heavy, Will be in a life of good pleasure and satisfaction. But he whose balance (of good deeds) will be (found) light, Will have his home in a (bottomless) Pit” (Quran 101:6-9). The Quran states that “those who believe in Allah and work righteousness, He will admit to Gardens beneath which Rivers flow, to dwell therein for ever: Allah has indeed granted for them a most excellent Provision” (Quran 65:11) The Book of Mormon teaches: “And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness” (Mosiah 2:41).

 

The Pillars of Islam

               Similarities can be found between the “Five Pillars of Islam” and LDS beliefs.  Latter-day Saints and Muslims believe that there is one God, and that we must have no other gods before Him.  Second, Muslims pray five times daily toward the holy city of Mecca.  Latter-day Saints pray daily, personally and with their families, a minimum of five times daily -- before all meals, when rising in the morning, and when retiring in the evening. We also believe that we should always have a prayer in our hearts.  Third, Muslims participate in almsgiving, or giving one-fortieth of one's income to the poor. Latter-day Saints believe in the law of tithing and return one-tenth of all of our increase to the Lord.  Fourth, Latter-day Saints and Muslims both believe that fasting can bring us closer to God.  While Muslims fast from food and drink from sunrise to sunset from morning to evening throughout the entire month of Ramadan, Latter-day Saints believe in fasting for twenty-four hour periods once a month, or more frequently if the occasion warrants.   Finally, Muslims strive to perform a pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in one's lifetime. The travels of the early Latter-day Saint pioneers are in many ways comparable to those of devout Muslims.The sacrifices made by many LDS families to attend the temple at least once in a lifetime, and much more frequently, if opportunities allow, are in many ways similar to the sacrifices made by Muslim pilgrims to Mecca.

 

The Christian Apostasy

               Muslims and Latter-day Saints both recognize that after the coming of  Jesus, divisions and apostasy arose in the Christian church.  The Quran teaches: “Those apostles We endowed with gifts, some above others: To one of them Allah spoke; others He raised to degrees (of honour); to Jesus the son of Mary We gave clear (Signs), and strengthened him with the holy spirit. If Allah had so willed, succeeding generations would not have fought among each other, after clear (Signs) had come to them, but they (chose) to wrangle, some believing and others rejecting. If Allah had so willed, they would not have fought each other; but Allah Fulfilleth His plan” (2:253).  Latter-day Saints recognize the departure of many Christians from the teachings of the Apostles and the loss of divine authority in the Church, as well as the restoration of God’s church through the prophet Joseph Smith.

               Latter-day Saints and Muslims acknowledge that writings in the Bible, while inspired and truthful, underwent some changes as they passed through the hands of careless scribes and translators and conniving priests.  Latter-day Saints and Muslims also recognize that many doctrines of non-LDS Christianity come not from the Bible, but from various creeds and non-apostolic works of the so-called 'early church fathers,' as well as from pagan Greek and Roman traditions.  Latter-day Saints do not accept the non-biblical creeds widely regarded by other Christian faiths.

 

The Divine Light and Revelation

               Latter-day Saints receive guidance through ongoing revelation from living prophets and apostles today.  While Jews accept the holy writings constituting the Old Testament and sectarian Christians claim to believe both the Old and New Testaments, Muslims recognize the Old and the New Testament and the Quran as inspired. In each case, a certain amount of revelation is accepted, but no more. Each group draws a line cutting themselves off from ongoing, contemporary revelation. This diverges from the Lord's pattern of constant, ongoing revelation to His people throughout all of recorded scripture. Latter-day Saints differ from Jews, Sectarian Christians, and Muslims in that we accept not only the Lord's ancient words in the Bible and the Book of Mormon, but we accept the words and instruction that the Lord continues to give through living prophets and apostles in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In the Book of Mormon, the Lord states: “because that I have spoken one word ye need not suppose that I cannot speak another; for my work is not yet finished” (2 Nephi 29:9).

               God is eternal and unchanging, and He loves his children as much today as in the time of Abraham or Muhammad. He revealed to Abraham and Muhammad many particulars relating to even seemingly small aspects of daily life. Yet we face challenges today that did not exist at the time of Abraham or Muhammad. Would God withhold counsel from us today in great matters, when he taught Abraham and Muhammad even in small ones? Latter-day Saints believe that God in his wisdom has provided living prophets on earth today, in whom the divine light dwells, to provide us with direction. God also provides a way in which all those who live worthily and receive authorized ordinances can receive within themselves the divine light. 

               God sends the Holy Spirit to help us to identify truth.  The Quran teaches: “Say, the Holy Spirit has brought the revelation from thy Lord in Truth, in order to strengthen those who believe, and as a Guide and Glad Tidings to Muslims” (Quran 16:102).  God promises that if we study, pray, and ask God sincerely, the power of the Holy Ghost can help us to know that the Book of Mormon is true (Moroni 10:3-5).

 

Divine Authority

               The Quran teaches: “Those who dispute about the signs of Allah without any authority bestowed on them, there is nothing in their breasts but (the quest of) greatness, which they shall never attain to: seek refuge, then, in Allah. It is He Who hears and sees (all things)” (Quran 40:56)  The Bible teaches that ministers of God must be called and ordained by authorized leaders with divine authority: “And no man taketh this honor unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron” (Hebrews 5:4).  The divine authority held in ancient times by apostles and prophets was restored in modern times through the prophet Joseph Smith.

 

The Book of Mormon

               Like the Prophet Muhammad, Book of Mormon prophets like Alma and Moroni lived in times when many people held false beliefs and denied the one true God.  The people of God were often persecuted and faced many hardships.  God empowered chosen prophets to call people to repentance and teach divine truths.  These truths are recorded in the Book of Mormon.

 

Practical Religion

               For Muslims and Latter-day Saints, religion is not simply a philosophy, but a way of life. Latter-day Saints believe that gospel principles must govern daily conduct.  The fruits of faith in the lives of Latter-day Saints are easily identified.  Latter-day Saints and Muslims share in common a strong focus on the family. The family is recognized as the fundamental unit of society and as ordained by God. While lackadaisical attitudes towards morality and divorce are held by many non-LDS Christians, observant Latter-day Saints and Muslims highly value chastity, fidelity in marriage, and familial responsibility. Latter-day Saints are commanded by the Lord to “bring up children in light and truth” (D&C 93:40). U.S. research shows that active Latter-day Saint youth are far less likely to be involved in immoral conduct than their non-LDS peers.[3]  Latter-day Saints, like observant Muslims, do not drink alcohol.  Latter-day Saints observe a strict law of health that includes a healthy diet and abstinence from tobacco products and other harmful substances.  Adherence to these teachings brings practical benefits.   One medical research study found that observant Latter-day Saints had a life expectancy eight to eleven years longer than the U.S.average. [4] Latter-day Saints also receive many other blessings as they strive to obey God’s laws. LDS Prophet and Apostle David O. McKay stated that “the purpose of the gospel is . . . to make bad men good and good men better, and to change human nature.”

               Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints hold their Muslim neighbors around the world in high regard.  Latter-day Saints extend an invitation to all people to learn of God, of His son Jesus Christ, and of His restored gospel, so that others may also share in the blessings of the gospel in this life and in the next.

 



[1] Apocryphal Writings and the Latter-day Saints, ed. C. Wilfred Griggs,  p.29

[2] George Q. Cannon, Journal of Discourses 24:371

[3] Top, Brent L, and Bruce A. Chadwick. “Helping Teens Stay Strong.” Ensign.  March. 1999, p. 27.

[4] Enstrom, James E., "Health Practices and Mortality among Active California Mormons, 1980-1993," in James T. Duke (ed.), Latter-day Saint Social Life. Provo: Religious Studies Center, 1998, pp. 461-471.


31 posted on 10/08/2007 10:10:28 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: Terirem
Do the Ecumenical Council precepts include Moon-Men and Kolobians? Do they exhibit an obsession with egypt and bee-worship? Even an ity Bity bit?

“Holiness to the Lord, Deseret”. Buzzzzzzzzzzz.

32 posted on 10/08/2007 10:16:46 AM PDT by VxH (One if by Land, Two if by Sea, and Three if by Wire Transfer)
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To: MHGinTN
And lest some readers miss the following heresy, I'll post a short Bible study exposing the heresy by sharing the Bible plan of Salvation.

From the above essay: "Both Muhammad and Christ taught that even after doing good works, the grace of God is still necessary."

A Word study regarding salvation:

I do not believe that you receive salvation after all that you can do. The following is offered with agape and based upon years of study. Hope it is edifying for you and other readers ...

In John's Gospel account of Jesus and the coming of the Christ --to be 'God With us' and then God in us following the Resurrection and Church Day of Pentecost,-- in that Gospel we are given the scene of one Nicodemus, member of the Jewish Sanhedrin in that day, coming to Jesus at night to ask Him for something to show He was Messiah. They get into an exchange during which Jesus tells Nicodemus that a man must be born again, born of the Spirit, in order to enter into Heaven. Throughout the letters of Paul --and especially in the letter to the Romans-- Paul addresses this notion of being born again, born of the Spirit, for Salvation in Christ. And he, Paul, explains it using the verb tenses and cases in the Greek which indicate an immediate deliverance followed by an ongoing transformational process called ‘salvation’. The Blood of Christ cleansed the Mercy Seat in Heaven and thereby those who died before the Cross were made righteous because of their belief (‘faithe‘) in God’s Promises. The Blood of Christ cleanses your heart allowing God’s Spirit to come into your inner self, your spirit, and dwell there to transform your soul as you ‘faithe’ in the promises of God to transform you, thereby ‘establishing’ the Law of God (fulfilling the Law) in your heart, as Paul put it.

When one reads these passages in the Greek, there are certain specific aspects of the Greek words which give insight into the specifics of the written passages. Here's a simplified example from Romans chapter ten:

Romans 10:8-10 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, [even] in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (KJV)

Romans 10:8-10 10:8 But what doth it say? `Nigh thee is the saying -- in thy mouth, and in thy heart:` that is, the saying of the faith, that we preach; that if thou mayest confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and mayest believe in thy heart that God did raise him out of the dead, thou shalt be saved, for with the heart doth believe to righteousness, and with the mouth is confession made to salvation; (Young’s Literal Translation)

The underlined words --faith, believe, and believeth-- all derive from the Greek word ‘pisteuo’. In the Greek the verbs give rise to the nouns, so ‘pisteuo’ --to faithe-- gives rise to ‘pistis’, the noun --faith. Important to the understanding of the use of ‘pistis’ is that it is at its heart an action word which, in the way written in the passage, is an ongoing action, an immediate application with continuous force, an unending application --not continuous if referred back to, but a thing instituted by God not man, then remaining in effect WHILE the ‘faither’ lives the remainder of life ‘faithing’. Faith is action based upon belief sustained by the confidence that what God promises He will do. That is why we read repeatedly that Abraham ‘believed’ God and it was counted for him righteousness. … The words in blue --confess and confession (’homologeo‘)-- are derived from ‘homos’ which is Greek for ‘at the same place or time’; adding ‘logeo‘ we have ‘at the same time or place spoken‘. … The word in red --salvation (soteria=deliverance)-- is derived from the Greek word ‘soter’, meaning ‘a deliverer’.

You wrote that ’Salvation is a thing that is worked out on one’s knees in prayer and in repentence.’ Salvation --deliverance-- is something you receive immediately when you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead. Then you seek to live the rest of your life, daily, as you function in every aspect of living, ‘faithing’ in the promises of God that He will transform your soul by the renewing of your mind. You receive deliverance in your spirit and remain delivered in your soul (your behavior mechanism) --are transformed-- through a daily walk (which should include time on your knees and/or in quiet solitude with His Spirit sifting and cleansing your soul) in which you ‘faithe’ in His Spirit within which you received the minute you were delivered. You received a deliverer (soter) in your dead human spirit when you confessed Jesus Christ. You are ‘sotered’ daily, to coin a word mixing Greek and English, in your behavior mechanism, your soul.

Pax vobiscum


33 posted on 10/08/2007 10:17:22 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: Claud
denied to the hilt by Catholic Christians, Orthodox Christians, and non-Chalcedonian Christians...even some Anglicans.

Which?

34 posted on 10/08/2007 10:18:03 AM PDT by LiteKeeper (Beware the secularization of America; the Islamization of Eurabia)
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To: VxH
Whooops forgot the  link:
 

“Holiness to the Lord, Deseret”. Buzzzzzzzzzzz.

 
 

35 posted on 10/08/2007 10:22:22 AM PDT by VxH (One if by Land, Two if by Sea, and Three if by Wire Transfer)
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To: MHGinTN

There is no way that an evangelical Christian could ever accept the claim of a Mormon that they are a Christian. The differences are monumental!


36 posted on 10/08/2007 10:22:48 AM PDT by LiteKeeper (Beware the secularization of America; the Islamization of Eurabia)
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To: LiteKeeper

What happened to your website???


37 posted on 10/08/2007 10:24:21 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support. Defend life support for others in the womb.)
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To: Terirem
Trying to figure out who falls into what category of Christian is made even more confusing by the fact at most Christians of all denominations consider themselves the one true catholic (universal) and orthodox (correct) church - though many of them admit to not being apostolic.

OK, just because a Baptist denomination (for example) may consider themselves the One True Arm of Jesus Christ doesn't mean it simultaneously thinks of the Presbyterians as a false arm. (Jesus' earthly body had more than one arm; so His spiritual body as represented in His Church can stand to have more than "one" true arm). Missionaries from multiple denominations often worship together...so these true feet of the body of Christ don't look @ each other & claim the other is a "false toe" of Christ.

Bottom line: Yes, every body has a contour where the body ends. But that doesn't mean that the claim to being authentic automatically equates to other similar claims being false. Body membership isn't exclusive to those who claim to be the true feet, toes or arms.

38 posted on 10/08/2007 10:26:39 AM PDT by Colofornian
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To: MHGinTN
Re #31 ...

Wow ... just wow ... that's considerably more favorable to Islam than it is to orthodox Christianity.

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that Muhammad was an inspired teacher raised up by God to teach His word.

Amazing. Note that they don't grant that status to any Catholic or Orthodox leader.

"I believe myself that Mahomed, whom the Christians deride and call a false prophet and stigmatize with a great many epithets --I believe that he was a man raised up by the Almighty, and inspired to a certain extent by Him to effect the reforms which he did in his land, and in the nations surrounding. He attacked idolatry, and restored the great and crowning idea that there is but one God."

A "great and crowning idea" which the LDS reject, of course.

39 posted on 10/08/2007 10:29:36 AM PDT by Campion
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To: colorcountry
From article reporting on general conference: Not only is Mormonism a Christian faith, it is the truest form of Christianity, said speaker after speaker on the first day of the 177th Semiannual LDS General Conference.

Now is saying that Mormonism is the "truest form of Christianity"...would that be kind of like anti-cult leaders saying @ some other conference that Mormonism is the "falsified form of Christianity?"

40 posted on 10/08/2007 10:31:45 AM PDT by Colofornian
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To: Colofornian

THEY see a difference. I see no difference at all.

I suppose they were trying to be as inoffensive as possible, what with Romney running for the highest office in the land, and all.

They probably spent hours in the PR department trying to figure out how to say “We’re right and you’re wrong.” without actually saying it.

I doubt if it worked.


41 posted on 10/08/2007 10:36:44 AM PDT by colorcountry (If the plain sense makes sense, seek no other sense, lest you get nonsense! ~ J. Vernon McGee)
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To: Claud; BibChr
Everyone calls Arians Christians, don’t they? And they denied the Trinity.

Everyone?? Only Arians refer to themselves as Christian. The rest of us call them heretics. Similarly, anyone who calls himself a Christian yet denies the substance of the Athanasian Creed is truly a heretic.

42 posted on 10/08/2007 10:54:37 AM PDT by topcat54 ("Friends don't let friends listen to dispensationalists.")
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To: Campion; MHGinTN
I believe myself that Mahomed, whom the Christians deride and call a false prophet and stigmatize with a great many epithets

Notice here that this Mormon leader CLEARLY differentiates between Christianity and Mormonism. He DOES NOT say "some Christians" or "non-Mormon Christians," he says "THE Christians" -- when I refer to a group as "THE whatevers" it is clear that I do not count myself among that group.

43 posted on 10/08/2007 10:55:00 AM PDT by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: topcat54; BibChr
Everyone?? Only Arians refer to themselves as Christian. The rest of us call them heretics.

If either of us denied the name "Christian" to heretics, then I wouldn't be a Christian in your eyes, and you definitely wouldn't be one in mine! At least the way we Catholics use it, heretics are still Christians. *Apostates* are no longer Christian.

But like I said to BibChr, that's a minor point hardly even worth debating. You're absolutely right that anyone who denies the Athanasian Creed is a heretic.

44 posted on 10/08/2007 11:08:32 AM PDT by Claud
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To: colorcountry
THEY see a difference. I see no difference at all. I suppose they were trying to be as inoffensive as possible, what with Romney running for the highest office in the land, and all. They probably spent hours in the PR department trying to figure out how to say “We’re right and you’re wrong.” without actually saying it. I doubt if it worked.

I've got an idea. They could do a commercial with a jingle: "We're more 'Christian' than you are; we're more 'Christian' than you; we're more 'Christian' than you are...strummin' on the old banjo."

45 posted on 10/08/2007 11:17:49 AM PDT by Colofornian
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To: MHGinTN

Where did you come up with that crap?


46 posted on 10/08/2007 11:22:56 AM PDT by Old Mountain man (Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice!)
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To: Claud; BibChr
If either of us denied the name "Christian" to heretics, then I wouldn't be a Christian in your eyes, and you definitely wouldn't be one in mine! At least the way we Catholics use it, heretics are still Christians. *Apostates* are no longer Christian.

I disagree. The definitions don’t seem to fit with your idea.

A heretic is one who denies orthodox doctrine.

An apostate is a person who at one time held to orthodoxy and later denied it (the notion of falling away).

Thus, a person born and raised a Mormon is a heretic since they deny the truth regarding the nature of the Godhood and the person of Jesus Christ. A person who converts to Mormonism from an orthodox Christian denomination is both a heretic and an apostate.

But like I said to BibChr, that's a minor point hardly even worth debating. You're absolutely right that anyone who denies the Athanasian Creed is a heretic.

And they may also be an apostate.

47 posted on 10/08/2007 11:36:18 AM PDT by topcat54 ("Friends don't let friends listen to dispensationalists.")
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To: MHGinTN
What happened to your website???

Just there...seems to be working fine.

48 posted on 10/08/2007 11:39:10 AM PDT by LiteKeeper (Beware the secularization of America; the Islamization of Eurabia)
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To: colorcountry
I call myself a Christian because I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. That is consistent with the original definition of Christian as found in the Bible. (See Acts 11:26.)

I sometimes call myself a Mormon Christian because I also believe in the Book of Mormon.

49 posted on 10/08/2007 11:46:11 AM PDT by Logophile
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To: Logophile

Nope. Disciples of Jesus don’t deny what He teaches. You do.

Find another name.


50 posted on 10/08/2007 11:49:54 AM PDT by BibChr ("...behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, so what wisdom is in them?" [Jer. 8:9])
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