Has Jesus Merely “Re-financed” Your Debt of Sin?

My second year at college I made the mistake of trying to do too much. As a foolish 19 year old, I didn’t want to give anything up, so I didn’t get much sleep. By mid Semester I got strep throat and then mononucleosis. It was severe enough that I had to quit school and go home. This meant I had to pay back a grant I had received for $500.00. Since I didn’t have the money to pay this debt, my parents came to my rescue and paid it for me. This rescue came with conditions though, since I had to pay them back. Basically they re-financed my debt and gave me their “terms” for payment: which meant that I had to paint the house. I was very grateful for what they did because I wouldn’t have been able to pay my debt to the college.

Last week’s Gospel Principles lesson teaches what one gains through Christ’s Atonement. Reading Boyd K. Packer’s parable of the Creditor and the Debtor (pages 63-65) reminded me of what my parents had done for me. Several years ago Packer gave a General Conference talk where he introduced his Parable which is used in several official Church manuals today. He teaches that through the Atonement, Jesus becomes our creditor. Similar to what my parents did for me in college, Jesus comes to our rescue and pays our debt of sin to Heavenly Father—but through this rescue our debt merely gets refinanced! We now have to pay our debt to Jesus!

The Parable tells the story of a foolish man who incurred a great debt. This debt is symbolic of the spiritual debt we owe to Heavenly Father for our sins. The foolish man couldn’t pay his debt so Jesus comes to his rescue and pays his debt for him. After Heavenly Father accepts His payment, Jesus turns to the man and says: “If I pay your debt, will you accept me as your creditor? ‘Oh yes, yes,’ cried the debtor. ‘You saved me from prison and show mercy to me.’ “Then, said the benefactor, ‘you will pay the debt to me and I will set the terms. It will not be easy, but it will be possible.”

Gospel Principles explains the meaning of this parable: “Our sins are our spiritual debts. Without Jesus Christ, who is our Savior and Mediator, we would all pay for our sins by suffering spiritual death. But because of him, if we will keep his terms, which are to repent and keep his commandments, we may return to live with our Heavenly Father.”

I have such a passion to share the truth with you! I am Christ’s Ambassador and He has committed to me His “ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18-21). In one way I am a “debt consolidation counselor”. My counsel to you is that your debt to sin has been canceled, not merely refinanced! When Jesus shed His blood on the cross he paid for every sin for the entire world! No more debt is left to be paid. Jesus doesn’t demand a “second payment” for sin, nor does He give you additional “terms” to be paid. Every single sin has already been paid for with the precious blood of Christ. Through His Atonement you are debt free!

On the cross Jesus cried out 'It is Finished!', in the Greek literally 'Paid in Full!'

On the cross Jesus cried out 'It is Finished!', in the Greek literally 'Paid in Full!'

In the book of John we read that just before Jesus died on the cross he exclaimed “It is finished!” In Greek this meant: “Paid in full”! This was also written on business documents or receipts during New Testament times to show that a bill had been paid in full. The connection between receipts and what Jesus had accomplished would have been very clear to John’s Greek speaking readers. It would be unmistakable to them that Jesus had paid the full price for their sins. You also can know that your bill listing your sin debt has been stamped “Paid in full”! Please, don’t reject this amazing gift through unbelief.

Believe these beautiful words: “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” (2 Corinthians 5: 18-21)

Links to Packer’s Parable Found at LDS.org:

Original Parable given by Boyd K. Packer:
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1977/04/the-mediator?lang=eng

Gospel Principles:
https://www.lds.org/manual/gospel-principles/chapter-12-the-atonement?lang=eng

Preparing for Exaltation: Teacher’s Manual for 12 & 13 year olds:
https://www.lds.org/manual/preparing-for-exaltation-teachers-manual?lang=eng

Aaronic Priesthood Manual 3:
https://www.lds.org/manual/print/aaronic-priesthood-manual-3/lesson-9-justice-and-mercy?lang=eng

Friend, Mar 2004:
https://www.lds.org/friend/2004/03/repentance-and-the-atonement?lang=eng

New Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual, Lesson 25: “Not My Will, But Thine, Be Done”:
https://www.lds.org/manual/new-testament-gospel-doctrine-teachers-manual/lesson-25-not-my-will-but-thine-be-done?lang=eng

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74 Comments

  1. shematwater said,

    July 19, 2010 at 10:15 am

    You know, I paid my rent the other day. I received a receipt that stated “Paid in Full.” However, since the money I was using was barrowed from the federal Government I still owe the money to someone.

    I think you are putting meaning into Christ’s words ont he cross that just isn’ there. It can still be the idea of Refinancing, as the debt to the Father has been paid in full. It is just that we owe the debt to a different creditor.

  2. catzgalore said,

    July 19, 2010 at 11:17 am

    It doesn’t make sense to say that Jesus paid the debt if we still have the debt. Of course, if you don’t believe there is only ONE God, then it just means that one god paid the other god; the debt is still there. What is the advantage of switching lenders?

  3. echoechoecho said,

    July 19, 2010 at 7:08 pm

    That’s an awesome message!

  4. shematwater said,

    July 20, 2010 at 11:44 am

    CATZ

    I do believe in only One God, if you define the term properly. However, what you say is basically correct. Christ paid the Father, and purchased our debt. We now owe him.

    What is the advantage? I would think that was obvious. We couldn’t pay the debt to the Father, but we can to Christ.
    Look at LDSWOMANS article. She owed the school $500 dollars. She couldn’t pay it. He parents paid it for her. She now owed them that money, which she still couldn’t pay. So, they let her paint the house as payment. By paying the original debt and setting new terms for payment they made it possible for her to repay the debt.
    We owe a debt to the Father that we cannot repay. So, just like LDSWOMAN’S parents, Christ paid it for us, and then set new terms by which we are able to pay the debt to him.

  5. catzgalore said,

    July 20, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    Shem, how does that make you feel, to pay your rent with borrowed money? Does it make you feel secure? If it was me, in the back of my mind I would still feel that anxiety of knowing I still owed money, and in fact, the debt was rising because of all the interest! You borrowed money to pay rent, which is a big hole where at the end you have nothing to show for it. You only go deeper and deeper into debt.

    Can you imagine the difference if someone came forward to pay your whole debt? Gave you a place to spend eternity, freely shared His riches with you? You would be forever thankful. In fact, you would be so thankful that you couldn’t stop thanking them! You would continually want to do things for them, and do whatever they wished you to do, just because you were so grateful!

    Jesus PAID THE DEBT IN FULL!! I am astounded, amazed, and know that we certainly don’t deserve that. It brings tears to my eyes to think of what Jesus suffered to pay for my sins!! It makes me want to listen carefully for His voice, to do as He asks, to know Him. I certainly can’t repay Him; and He knows that. We stand before Him covered with the Blood of our Savior! Without that covering we have no hope.

    Trying to pay back our sin debt is like paying our rent with borrowed money! With every rent payment we are further in debt! Until that debt is paid in full, we are under the weight of it! We can never rest because we must continually work to pay that debt!

    But we can stop believing we can save ourselves. God is saying, Child, I paid the price for your sins. You can’t do enough to satisfy Justice. But Jesus did. By His death He provided mercy and grace and forgiveness.

    We can rest in HIM and accept the love He has to give. We can stop working out of fear and obligation and work in LOVE.

  6. catzgalore said,

    July 20, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    If it doesn’t seem that I really answered your last post, it is because I wrote MY last post before YOUR last post was posted. That make sense??

    It is hard not to get confused, Shem. Your church teaches that Jesus is one god, and the Father is another.Both have their own physical body. Now you say you believe in ONE god (as long as it is defined correctly).

    you said… ” We couldn’t pay the debt to the Father, but we can to Christ.

    that makes no sense to me since I believe Jesus Christ and the Father are ONE GOD .
    I would say it, that we couldn’t pay the debt to God; (the great I AM, the triune God, as I define God) without Jesus PAYING the debt. Not re-investing it with another, but PAYING the debt. In full. With His blood.

  7. catzgalore said,

    July 20, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    excuse my tags, LOL

  8. shematwater said,

    July 20, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    CATZ

    In all truth, what you describe would be far more uncomfortable, and cause far greater anxiety in me.
    Even what you say leaves the debt unpaid. It is just that we are not required to pay it anymore. As such, living in eternity with Christ would be a misrable life, knowing that I owe him everything and that he is unwilling to accept payment. That would be a living hell to me.
    I do not want to owe anybody anything, and what you describe leaves me in that condition for eternity.
    To illustrate: I lived in Utah for a brief period. While there I was unable to pay my share of the rent, and so my brother willingly paid it for me. He never asked me to repay him. I don’t even remember him telling me he paid it. Another brother told me about it a few days later. Ever since then I have felt a discomfort in the back of my mind. I will continue to feel it until I repay that money, which will be a while.

    No, having that debt remain does not cause anxiety, because I know I can repay it, as he has made it possible.
    I am in school now, living on Grants and Loans. By the time I graduate I will have about 40 thousand dollars in loans. This causes a problem. I could spend thirty or forty years paying it off directly, which would force me to live in a state of near poverty for several decades. Or, I can choose to teach in a high-risk school for five years, at which point the Federal Government will forgive all my loans. I will have repaid the debt, but in a way other than direct payment.
    If I had to repay it in the normal fashion it would cause great anxiety. But because I have this option which repays the entire debt the anxiety is no longer there where the debt is concerned. It will be difficult to teach in such a school, and will test my character and ability to the limits. But if I remain there I will have paid my debt.

    Using this analogy, we are all here in mortality on loans, currently owned by Christ. We can choose to pay them off slowly, living in a state of wickedness now, and misery later until it is fully paid. Or we opt for doing the work Christ has asked of us, and if we remain faithful throughout our lives, when we die and are resurrected the remainder of the dept will be completely forgiven in exchange for our service. There is no anxiety, as the way has been prepared for us to repay the debt.

  9. mommawrench said,

    July 21, 2010 at 9:17 pm

    There is a passage in C.S. Lewis’ “The Great Divorce” which always convicts me of the sin I am too easily taken by: That of trying to earn Heaven. The scene is that spirits from Hell (or “Purgatory” or the terrestrial kingdom) are taken to Heaven for a visit, wherein each of them are greeted by a spirit from their Earthly past who tries to persuade them to stay. In one of the meetings, a man is greeted by a Heavenly spirit and is arguing for his “rights.”

    “I’m asking for nothing but my rights. You may think you can put me down because you’re dressed up like that (which you weren’t when you worked under me) and I’m only a poor man. But I got to have my rights same as you, see?”
    “Oh no. It’s not so bad as that. I haven’t got my rights, or I shouldn’t be here. You will not get yours either. You’ll get something far better. Never fear.”
    “That’s just what I say, I haven’t got my rights. I always done my best and I never done nothing wrong. And what I don’t see is why I should be put below a bloody murderer like you.”
    “Who knows whether you will be? Only be happy and come with me.”
    “What do you keep on arguing for? I’m only telling you the sort of chap I am. I only want my rights. I’m not asking for anybody’s bleeding charity.”
    “Then do. At once. Ask for the Bleeding Charity. Everything is here for the asking and nothing can be bought.”

    The problem with thinking we can do anything to pay back our debt is that it is a bit like a young boy asking his father for a sixpence to buy him a birthday present. We can’t give God anything that is not already His, and as His Son is His, too, neither can we repay Christ. We can do nothing but admit that we are merely broken vessels and ask that He fill us. There has only ever been one perfect Man, and it is His righteousness we must adopt as our own if we are to “be perfect” as our “father in Heaven is perfect.” If we attempt to own that perfection on our own by following the Law, we will fail, every time. If the redemptive power of Jesus Christ was not enough to save me from ALL of my sins then IT IS NOT PERFECT, and if it is not perfect then it is not of God, and if it is not of God then the prophesies of the Messiah have not yet been fulfilled and we are still waiting for Him to come.

  10. shematwater said,

    July 22, 2010 at 10:16 am

    “We can’t give God anything that is not already His, and as His Son is His, too, neither can we repay Christ. We can do nothing but admit that we are merely broken vessels and ask that He fill us. There has only ever been one perfect Man, and it is His righteousness we must adopt as our own if we are to “be perfect” as our “father in Heaven is perfect.” If we attempt to own that perfection on our own by following the Law, we will fail, every time.”

    I couldn’t agree with all this more. This is exactly how I feel. I don’t particularly agree with the rest of what was said, but this is spot on.

  11. catzgalore said,

    July 22, 2010 at 11:23 am

    oh thank you, mommawrench! I know that only the Lord can get through to Shem… my heart is heavy every time he doesn’t get it. I especially liked
    We can’t give God anything that is not already His

    Praying that God would open Shem’s eyes and soften his heart… and he would see the depth of the price that Jesus paid…

  12. July 23, 2010 at 8:11 am

    Shem–As such, living in eternity with Christ would be a misrable life, knowing that I owe him everything and that he is unwilling to accept payment

    Me-It’s human nature to want someone to owe a debt to–we feel in control that way–mormonism is just another humanistic religion that gives man that illusion of control to God

    lets say you right in saying that we all owe god a debt..what I want to know shem is

    “what if your works of righteousness aren’t good enough?’

    What would you do if you found that our salvation wasn’t dependent on how outwardly “moral” we are?

    or

    If works of morality are good enough to get us into heaven then; Why the need for Christ to “save the world”(John 3:17)

  13. shematwater said,

    July 23, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    NATHAN

    You still aren’t getting it. I never said that anything we do is good enough to earn us salvation. This would be false, heretical doctrine. We never could earn salvation.
    It is also true that nothing we have is truly ours, as God is the king and ruler of everything, and anything we have comes from him. I have never denied this.

    I cannot do enough, but I must do what I can.
    I liked the story of the man who was commanded by his Lord to push a large boulder. The thing weighed several tons, and the man knew there was no way for him to move it, but he pushed anyway. He pushed all day, even when people laughed at him for being so crazy. He pushed all night, getting no sleep. Then, when the dawn came his Lord returned. The man was till pushing, and when he saw his Lord he knelt down and apologized for failing, as he had not moved the boulder at all. But his Lord smiled and said, “You have not failed. I commanded you to push; I never said you have to move it.”

    In a very similar way we are given commands that seem like this immovable boulder, but as long as we continue to push throughout the day, when our Lord returns we will be counted are good servants, for we still pushed.

    Oh and “What would I do if I found that our salvation wasn’t dependent on how outwardly “moral” we are?”

    I wouldn’t really care, because my faith is sufficient. If works have nothing to do with it I will gladly accept God’s invitation into heaven at the final judgement.

  14. latterdaysaintwoman said,

    July 23, 2010 at 7:33 pm

    Shem, you wrote: “You still aren’t getting it. I never said that anything we do is good enough to earn us salvation. This would be false, heretical doctrine. We never could earn salvation.

    Since your own LDS prophets teach that you must earn salvation, does that mean you now believe that they teach “false, heretical doctrine”?

    I have been doing a search on lds.org using the word “earn“. I am amazed at just how many LDS leaders have claimed that you must earn your salvation. Here are just two quotes from LDS leaders:

    James E. Faust, “Dear Are the Sheep That Have Wandered” Ensign, May 2003, 61:
    We remember that the prodigal son wasted his inheritance, and when it was all gone he came back to his father’s house. There he was welcomed back into the family, but his inheritance was spent. 11 Mercy will not rob justice, and the sealing power of faithful parents will only claim wayward children upon the condition of their repentance and Christ’s Atonement. Repentant wayward children will enjoy salvation and all the blessings that go with it, but exaltation is much more. It must be fully earned.

    George Albert Smith, “Origin of Man and Prophecy Fulfilled,” Tambuli, Jan 1980, 39
    Our position hereafter will be the result of our lives here. Every man will be judged according to his works and he will only receive that degree of glory that he has earned. It is nearly 2000 years since Jesus Christ our Lord came to earth and gave his life as a ransom for us that through him all might be resurrected from the dead. He was the first fruits of the resurrection. He taught us to love our neighbor as ourself and to do good to all people… I desire most earnestly that we shall all earn and receive an eternal inheritance in the Celestial Kingdom of our Lord right here upon this earth when we attain to immortality.

  15. catzgalore said,

    July 23, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    Shem, that is exactly why I get confused at what you say… it isn’t the same as what I have studied (on the lds site) Here’s a quote from the lds website–
    Some Christians accuse Latter-day Saints who give this answer of denying the grace of God through claiming they can earn their own salvation. We answer this accusation with the words of two Book of Mormon prophets. Nephi taught, “For we labor diligently … to persuade our children … to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” (2 Ne. 25:23). And what is “all we can do”? It surely includes repentance (see Alma 24:11) and baptism, keeping the commandments, and enduring to the end. Moroni pleaded, “Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ” (Moro. 10:32). Dallin H. Oaks, “Have You Been Saved?,” Ensign, May 1998
    (emphasis mine)
    Sounds to me like the defense actually backs the accusation.

  16. shematwater said,

    July 26, 2010 at 11:18 am

    LDS and CATZ

    You are failing to understand the doctrine. The problem is that you are taking only one point and claiming it as the all sweeping truth of the doctrine. This is not accurate, and will always give a false understanding.

    Mosiah 2: 21 “I say unto you that if ye should serve him who has created you from the beginning, and is preserving you from day to day, by lending you breath, that ye may live and move and do according to your own will, and even supporting you from one moment to another—I say, if ye should serve him with all your whole souls yet ye would be unprofitable servants.”

    Then again, in verses 23-24 “And now, in the first place, he hath created you, and granted unto you your lives, for which ye are indebted unto him.
    And secondly, he doth require that ye should do as he hath commanded you; for which if ye do, he doth immediately bless you; and therefore he hath paid you. And ye are still indebted unto him, and are, and will be, forever and ever; therefore, of what have ye to boast?”

    No matter what we do we cannot earn Salvation. We will always be unprofitable servants, and always owe some debt to God.

    The answer that CATZ quoted, which she claims only strengthens the accusation, does, in fact, refute it.
    If we could EARN salvation the quote from Nephi would simply say that “we are saved after all we can do.” It does not say this, however. It very clearly teaches that without the Grace of God even our very best would not be sufficient to gain salvation, never mind exaltation.
    Now, I will deny the false idea that the Grace of God saves without any action on our part, but I will never deny that salvation is impossible without this Grace.

    Now, in all truth, the leaders have never said salvation is earned. Even the two quotes given do not say this. Faust says that the repentant will enjoy salvation, but that Exaltation must be earned. George Albert Smith speaks to us earning a reward in the Celestial Kingdom. We are all given salvation (except sons of perdition), but we must earn the reward we are given in Heaven. Christ has done what we couldn’t, given us salvation. We must now do what we can, and Earn the highest reward in Heaven.

    Think of it as going to College. We do not have the money to pay tuition. So, Christ pays our way. He has man jobs that need to be filled, and tells us that which one we get will depend on our grades. So, he has done what we couldn’t in paying our way. Now, we must do what we can and get those A’s that will earn us the best jobs in heaven.

  17. July 27, 2010 at 8:39 am

    ldswomen-Since your own LDS prophets teach that you must earn salvation, does that mean you now believe that they teach “false, heretical doctrine”?

    Me–Shem this is a very valid question.. Are you not concerned that your bishop and others May have been speaking falsely?

    How do you know there not speaking falsely have you questioned them about it in light of what I know you know the book of Romans says about Grace apart from legalism

    You believe that salvation comes from God but that we should “love our neighbors” to bring them to the saving knowing and repentance of the Cross–Thank God for this–so do I– Have you questioned yourself about why this view doesn’t mess with the mormons

  18. July 27, 2010 at 8:40 am

    I know you feel like somethings not right?

  19. shematwater said,

    July 27, 2010 at 11:39 am

    NATHAN

    First, my leaders have never said we could earn Slavation, as I pointed out. As such I have no fear that they are speaking falsely.

    Second, I question everything. So far the answers to those questions have shown the LDS church to be right on every point.

    Third, the view you say “doesn’t mess with the mormons,” is in complete harmony with the LDS doctrine, so of course it doesn’t mess with us (though it does mesh very well).

    And lastly, I do feel like there is something wrong, but it is not with the LDS church. There are many things wrong in this world, and several wrong with my personal choices. I have also seen things that feel wrong with other members of the church. But the church itself is the one thing that has always been right.

  20. latterdaysaintwoman said,

    July 27, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    Shem, you wrote: “Now, in all truth, the leaders have never said salvation is earned. Even the two quotes given do not say this. Faust says that the repentant will enjoy salvation, but that Exaltation must be earned. George Albert Smith speaks to us earning a reward in the Celestial Kingdom. We are all given salvation (except sons of perdition), but we must earn the reward we are given in Heaven. Christ has done what we couldn’t, given us salvation. We must now do what we can, and Earn the highest reward in Heaven.

    I’m sorry, I wasn’t paying attention to the words you were using. I hadn’t realized that you had switched to the LDS “immortality” definition for “salvation“. You are right, LDS teaching does sometime use different definitions for the word “salvation” and one of those definitions claims that salvation is a free gift, given to every human who has ever lived. However, as you were fully aware, we were not speaking about the LDS “salvation” that every human receives as a gift.

    If you look in True to the Faith under “Salvation“, LDS teaching claims six different definitions for the word “salvation. Talk about confusing! No wonder so many Mormons don’t know LDS doctrine. And, by having so many different definitions, it creates an opportunity for a Mormon to deceptively claim that they believe the same thing as every Christian–that salvation is a free gift!

    However, the “salvation” that I am referring to is eternal life or exaltation. According to LDS teachings, one must earn eternal life (exaltation) by obedience to God’s laws. In effect, that is what the two quotes by Faust and Smith claimed.

    Mormon prophets and God’s prophets use the same vocabulary, but a different dictionary! According to God’s prophets, salvation is not given to every human who has every lived, but only to those who have faith in Christ:

    For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. 17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:16-18)

    Here’s a link to the six different definitions for Salvation, found in True to the Faith:

  21. shematwater said,

    July 27, 2010 at 6:53 pm

    LDSWOMAN

    You should know that if we use many definitions that no verse from the scriptures is going to pose any problem in fitting just perfectly with our doctrine.
    The verses in Romans fits very nicely with the sixth understanding of the term. We can know that this is the meaning being used because it is given only to the faithful, and speaks against the ungodly.
    As such, Paul is in complete agreement with the LDS leaders, for he, as well as they, proclaim that only the Faithful will ento into the Celestial Kingdom and live with the Father.

  22. July 27, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    Shem–It is also true that nothing we have is truly ours, as God is the king Shem–and ruler of everything, and anything we have comes from him. I have never denied this.

    Me–it was never asserted by me that you deny anything that you post of you own volition–What I and others have stated is that what you have done is use contradiction and circular logic in attempt to explain a humanistic nightmare that hides under the notion of a christ while maintaining just enough control to give you the illusion of control.

    Shem–You should know that if we use many definitions that no verse from the scriptures is going to pose any problem in fitting just perfectly with our doctrine.

    Me-Why do you use so many definitions of a word that carries the same meaning in both hebrew and greek–freedom from Sin and deliverance to God from that Sin–I wonder what it means in reformed Egyptian?

    Do these definitions enhance your sense of control? or lack thereof

  23. catzgalore said,

    July 28, 2010 at 5:27 pm

    Shem said…
    You should know that if we use many definitions that no verse from the scriptures is going to pose any problem in fitting just perfectly with our doctrine.

    Shem, you are being deceptive. You know very well what we were talking about, SALVATION as defined as a CHRISTIAN defines it. You flipped around and changed definitions just as latterdaysaintwoman said. If you change the definition, you can mold the scriptures to your own doctrine. You can twist it around and make it fit with LDS doctrine.

    You know very well that the LDS church thinks that you must earn salvation, as a Christian defines “salvation”.

    LDS definitions…

    1. Salvation from Physical Death. LDS– unearned, given to all people

    2. Salvation from Sin. LDS– must be EARNED…

    3. Being Born Again. LDS must be proved and renewed

    4. Salvation from Ignorance. LDS– not sure if this is earned or unearned. Don’t exactly understand this definition. Lots of people know about Jesus but don’t believe. They are not ignorant, but they do not believe.So this definition alone is not “salvation” from a Christian point of view.

    5.Salvation from the Second Death. LDS–almost all humans will be saved in this manner. It does not, however, mean dwelling with God. Therefore, to a Christian, merely salvation from the second death does not equal “salvation”.

    6.Eternal Life, or Exaltation. LDS– must be EARNED. Only good Mormons will know Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and dwell with them forever. Christian– UNEARNED.

    When you use so many definitions you can change when you please and say whatever you want to say. HALF of the definitions of LDS “salvation” MUST BE EARNED. You cannot say that the LDS church teaches that “salvation” is NOT EARNED without being deceptive. You have to tell the whole story!

    I know that by now you have a clear understanding of what Christians mean by “salvation”. Do you see how deceptive it is to say that salvation is not earned, as you know that what the Christian means is not the same as you do? It grieves me that you do not see what you are doing. Praying for you that God would open your eyes to the deception!!!

  24. shematwater said,

    July 29, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    NATHAN

    I have not contradicted anything, nor have I used circular logic. It is only illogical when you do not have the entire doctrine, which is generally what happens on these threads, as the entire doctrine cannot be contained in a single thread.

    We use many definitions because it is the only really logical way to understand the doctrine. The word Salvation is not Greek, nor is it Hebrew. It is English, and thus does not carry the exact same definition. the basic meaning of the word is to be saved from some negative consequence. As such, all the ways we use it in are consistant with the meaning of the English word.

    CATZ

    I do understand the general Christian idea of Salvation, and I still say we do not believe it is earned.
    The real problem is this: You believe in a triune God, while we believe in the three Gods making the Godhead, but all three being fully God, or One God.

    So, as I understand it, the general Christian belief is that Salvation is admitance into Heaven to live in the presence of God. Great.
    According to LDS doctrine admittance into Heaven to live in the presence of God is a free gift, for even those in the Telestial Glory will enjoy the presence of God.
    The difference comes not in whether you will be in the presense of God, but to what extent you will be allowed to enjoy that presence, which is based in your works in this Life, for Christ has said multiple times that we will be judged according to our works, and from this receive the reward.

    So, Salvation for both of us is basically the same. Where we differ is on our belief on what the rewards of our works will be once we get there.

    Oh, and by the way, my previous post was more a joke than anything, because it should be realized that using the argument of definitions isn’t going to do anything.
    I will say that I know of only one verse in the Bible that uses the term Salvation that is not speaking of the Celetial Glory and Exaltation. Further study may show more, but at this time I know of none. I do not change the meaning of the Bible, but we do use the term salvation to refer to things in the Bible other than Exaltation.
    (the one verse is Exodus 14: 13 when Moses uses the term in referrence to saving Israel from the Egyptians at the Red Sea.)

  25. rblandjr said,

    July 30, 2010 at 2:31 am

    All,

    Great article and interesting comments.
    While reading through the article and comments I thought of a passage in Col. 2:13-14 which states,

    And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwritting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross,

    Seems like this passage is simple and to the point. Paid in Full. All I know is that I took God at his word and He did what he said he would. He did the work. He gets the glory.

  26. catzgalore said,

    July 31, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Seth said…
    The real problem is this: You believe in a triune God, while we believe in the three Gods making the Godhead, but all three being fully God, or One God.

    Yes, that is the real problem, the heart of the matter, the only thing that really matters at all. You believe in three gods. At least three. Historically, your church has taught that if you are good enough you too can become a god of a planet, have multiple wives, and have spirit children to populate that planet. I know I don’t understand all the subtle nuances of your system of beliefs but I understand enough to know that you do not believe in only One God so that’s enough for me to know that it is a false religion.

    You also said…
    Oh, and by the way, my previous post was more a joke than anything, because it should be realized that using the argument of definitions isn’t going to do anything.

    You are not being honest then in your conversation? You intentionally switched definitions. By a “joke” you mean that you were intentionally misleading us!

    Read it for yourself on the LDS site. It is PLAIN that your church teaches that part of your salvation must be EARNED… it SAYS that!!

    definition 2. Salvation from Sin. must be EARNED…

    definition 3. Being Born Again. must be proved and renewed

    definition 6.Eternal Life, or Exaltation. must be EARNED.

    Read it again, and know that you ARE being misleading when you are saying that your church doesn’t teach that salvation must be earned (or PARTLY earned). It is misleading doubletalk for you to say that salvation isn’t earned, (according to the LDS church). If you don’t believe that your “heavenly status” is earned, then how can you be LDS? If you are instead giving all the glory of salvation to the Lord (saying that He alone saves [provides eternal life] and it is not of ourselves), then you are not talking about LDS beliefs.

    It is rather difficult to compare LDS and Christian beliefs, because so many have different definitions. You don’t think it matters, but it does. It’s like comparing apples and oranges. If you are honest, you will admit that definitions are indeed different. If you narrow down the definitions to simple terms…

    Eternal Life… Christian belief– a gift from God. Eternally dwelling with the Lord. Not something we do for ourselves, it is a GIFT and UNEARNED.

    LDS…Eternal Life… you must be LDS, and you must be married to a worthy person, and you must keep and perform the commandments and covenants.
    Your standing in heaven is EARNED.

    Even “eternal life” has different definitions…And I do know that you are just pretending not to get it, it’s just a joke.

  27. shematwater said,

    July 31, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    RBLAND

    I couldn’t agree more (though I know some will claim I don’t).

  28. latterdaysaintwoman said,

    July 31, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Catz,

    Is it possible that Shem is ashamed of official LDS teaching? He constantly denies believing what his prophets and apostles clearly teach.

  29. shematwater said,

    July 31, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    LDSWOMAN

    I deny the false interpretations of their teachings yes, but not their teachings. There is nothing that the any leader of the church has declared to be doctrine that I do not believe. However, there is a whole lot that people with no real understanding claim they declare to be doctrine, when they never did.

    And I do apologize for my last comment. I meant that I agree completely with the verse being quoted. I also take God at his word and he has done what he said he would.

    CATZ

    The joke was merely in the manner in which I expressed myself. What I said concerning the scripture given was honest and to the point.

    As to definitions, when did I ever say it was not important? Of course it is important. All I said is that arguing that our doctrine is not Biblical because we use multiple definitions for a word is pointless.

    Now, I have never used doubletalk or intentionally mislead anyone. When I speak of Salvation I try to clarify which meaning I am using. In general I use that term only to refer to admittance into heaven, regardless of what glory you are in. If I am speaking of any other meaning I use a different term, such as Exaltation, or Eternal Life. If it is confusing it is unintentional and I am always willing to explain further to help you to understand.

    Such as in the case of there being multiple gods. This is doctrine, and I believe it completely, partly because I see it in the Bible. However, you will notice that I do not say multiple Gods. The difference is in the capital “G.” I believe in many gods, or in many people who exist in state of godhood. I do not believe in many Gods, or deities of worship. This is a large difference that people don’t generally understand.
    I did say I can see this from the words of the Bible, and I will show you where. I will give only two of the many verses.
    1 John 3: 2 “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.”
    How can we be like him if he is a god and we are not?
    John 17: 3 “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”
    The only way to know something, or someone, is to experience the same thing. We cannot truly know our parents until we are parents. We cannot truly know the life of a soldier unless we are soldiers. We cannot know God unless we are gods.

    I am ashamed of nothing, nor do I doubt any of what the church teaches. But I do feel sorrow over those souls who have the intelligence to see the truth, but prefer to remain in darkness.

  30. July 31, 2010 at 6:44 pm

    Shem-I deny the false interpretations of their teachings yes, but not their teachings

    Me-Could you unpack this statement for us as it’s seen by many that interpretations leads to teachings be they false or not!

  31. rblandjr said,

    July 31, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    Shem,
    So we are in agreement. Well let me ask you this question.
    Are we also in agreement about this passage Col. 1:12-14 ?

    “Giving thanks unto the Gather, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness ofsins:”

    Now in this prayer Paul said they were, saints who are qualified by God to share in his inheritance.

    That is the result of salvation that Christ procured on the Cross. That “where he is, there I may be also.”

    Not just being resurrected but eternal life which refers to the quality of life we will receive with Christ, the Father and the Holy Spirit.

    That is how I understand what God has done for me and what I am to receive in eternity. Not a hope so but a definite promise from God who cannot lie. That is my understanding of those passages that I quoted in Colossians.
    Do you agree?

    Thanks

  32. rblandjr said,

    July 31, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    Shem,
    Thanks for sharing those verses in John and 1John. Lets look closely at them.

    1John 3:2 John is talking about us being Gods children but when he appears we will have glorified bodies that will never be sick or grow old or die, and being completely without sin. No one like that has yet appeared on earth but Christ after his resurrection. “We shall be like him”, In eternity, Chrstians will be morally wthout sin, intellectually without falsehood or error, physicaly without weakness or imperfections, and filled continually with the Holy Spirit. But “like” does not mean “identical to,” believers will never be omniscient or omnipotent as Christ is, since he is both man and God.

    John 17:3 The context is defining what eternal life is that Christ is giving.

    “Eternal life”, as defind by “Jesus involves the experience of knowing “the only true God” through His Son. It is a personal relationship of intimacy which is contiuous and dynamic. The word “know” (ginoskosin) is used here in the Greek NT to describe the intimacy of a sexual relationship. Thus a person who knows God has an intimate personal relationship withHim. That relationship is eternal not temporal. Eternal life is not simply enless existence. Everyone will exist somewhere forever. But the question is, In what condition or in what relationship will they spend eternity?.

    Thanks again for your comments as always Shem.

  33. rblandjr said,

    July 31, 2010 at 9:21 pm

    There is nothing we can do to pay the debt because my sacrifice or service is tainted by sin. “All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags”. Guess someone who is willing and able must or I am in serious trouble. Thank God He paid the debt.

  34. catzgalore said,

    August 1, 2010 at 12:57 am

    Shem you said…
    I deny the false interpretations of their teachings yes, but not their teachings. There is nothing that the any leader of the church has declared to be doctrine that I do not believe. However, there is a whole lot that people with no real understanding claim they declare to be doctrine, when they never did.

    In traditional meaning, “doctrine” is the body of teachings of a group. Obviously, the LDS church means something else. It is confusing. Some of what your leaders taught was only their own opinion, not “doctrine”. It is not clear what the difference between “teachings” or “opinions” and “doctrine”.

    you said…

    All I said is that arguing that our doctrine is not Biblical because we use multiple definitions for a word is pointless.

    I never said that your doctrine was not Biblical because you use multiple definitions. I said that by using multiple definitions and then switching definitions (even as a “joke”) was misleading. I think you are talking about one definition (the 6th one, the one that fits most closely to the Christian definition) and you are not. You switched to the definition that is NOT earned and then claiming that salvation is NOT earned; because you are now talking about the FIRST definition and not the SIXTH one. You make it sound like you agree with Christian doctrine, but you do not. There’s more to it than you say. Thus, you are misleading.

    you said…
    However, you will notice that I do not say multiple Gods. The difference is in the capital “G.” I believe in many gods, or in many people who exist in state of godhood.

    God with a capital G from the Christian point of view refers to the great I AM; our Creator, the Triune God of the Bible. Traditionally, gods with a small g are supposedly supernatural beings that are worshipped by someone.

    Your early church leaders taught that men could become Gods– with a capital G. Of course, these writings are not necessarily considered “doctrine” by YOUR definition of doctrine so you can throw them out if you wish. I am just saying that by your statements gods are not God and men will become gods and not God…. and yet, here’s what Brigham Young said….

    “The Lord created you and me for the purpose of becoming Gods like Himself” (Journal of Discourses 3:93).

    and Joseph Smith:

    “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens!” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.345)

    “Here then is eternal life – to know the only wise and true God; and you have got to learn how to be Gods yourselves, and to be kings and priests to God the same as all Gods have done before you” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith p.346)

    I am not claiming them as the “doctrine” of your church. Since they were spoken by your leaders, I assume they meant for people to accept what they said as the truth! You do not seem to have the same beliefs. You seem to be changing what they say to small g “gods” and not capital G “Gods”. You define the differences, and yet your church leaders (at one time) said differently!

    If these statements are not “doctrine” but merely their own opinion and not necessarily truth, then how can you follow any of their teachings, if you can’t trust their teachings to be truth?

    1 John 3: 2 “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.”

    I believe this verse, but I do not believe that we will become a God, or a god. We will be like Him; because we will see Him as He is. That doesn’t say we will be like Him because we will be a god like him. Of course I do not fully understand God now. But someday I will.

    John 17: 3 “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”

    This says nothing about being a god. I can know my parent fully without being a parent. I may not feel what they went through, but I may know them. It is not true that we cannot know the life of a soldier unless we are a soldier. We cannot experience being a soldier without being a soldier; we cannot feel what they feel but we can certainly know the horrors without being there. It is true that we cannot know God fully until we are face to face; but it is not true that we have to be a “God” or a “god” to know Him. There is no other God so we will never be “God” with a capital G.

    you said…
    But I do feel sorrow over those souls who have the intelligence to see the truth, but prefer to remain in darkness.

    Me too, Shem… me too. Praying that God would give you eyes to see.

  35. shematwater said,

    August 3, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    RBLAND

    I agree with the scripture that you reference, but not necessarily with the interpretation you give.

    I appreciate you understanding of the passages I gave, but can you see how I reach my understanding? This is really the only point I have ever tried to make on these threads. I can read the same passage and reach a different conclusion than you, but both can be supported by the Bible.

    NATHAN

    Please explain.

    CATZ

    I do not switch definitions. I use the definition that is appropriate to the conversation and time.
    Here is the difficulty in you understanding the reason behind the definitions. You believe in one heaven where all the faithful will be. Now, the Bible does teach that entrance into Heaven is a free gift of God; this I agree with. Since you believe in only one heaven it is logical to conclude that this same free gift includes living in the presence of God.
    However, we believe in a multi-layered heaven. We still believe that entrance into heaven is a free gift. But since there are many layers to say that the highest of them is part of that gift is illogical and unjust. This leads to the doctrine that Eternal Life, or living in the presence of the Father, is not part of that gift, but must be earned. As such, it is not part of the same Salvation that we agree upon.

    As to God verses god, I have read the quotes you given. The ones from Joseph Smith are from the King Follet discourse. I have read this several times, and in all the copies I have read they use the same terms that I do (the little g in regard to us). I will admit that the in the one passage from the Journal of discourses it does not, but is fine with me. I have seen only one version of this, and so can calmly say that the printer made an error.

    These statements are doctrine. However, the official doctrine is given in the Doctrine and Covenants, section 132, where it does us the little g. This is where I get my understanding of the doctrine, and from the King Follet Discourse, which uses the same grammer in every copy i have ever seen.

  36. rblandjr said,

    August 3, 2010 at 5:37 pm

    Shem,

    When studying the Bible you allow it to speak for itself. You must read it in context with all of scripture. You must use and understand the words themselves as they are used and understood by the biblical writers. What I shared was based upon understanding and meaning of the words such as “know” and “like him” in those two passages you gave as your proof texts. The problem with your interpretation is that it contradicts the Bible on the doctrine of God.

    You must see that there are many serious problems with your interpretations when compared with the whole of the Bible.

    If the doctrine of progression and exaltation as taught by the LDS Church were true and Biblical then it would be clearly taught in the early church. It would be clearly found in the thousands and thousands of manuscript evidence that dates from shortly after the death and resurrection of Christ. Using select scripture is very dangerous to build doctrine upon.

    To honestly look at these contradictions just in this particular doctrine is so vital and important. For if one is wrong about this then the end result could have eternal consequences.

    Based on the Bible God is not or ever been a man, (Numbers 23:19:Hosea 11:9). He is a spirit (Jn.4:24) and a spirit does not have flesh and bones (Lk. 24:39). God is eternal (Ps.90:2; 102:27; Isa 57:15; 1 Tim. 1:17) immutable (or unchanging in his being and perfections,) Ps. 102 :25-27; Mal. 3:6. God did not progress toward godhood but has always been God.

    I limited the number of scripture to these but I am able to share many more.

    It all boils down to whose interpretation of scripture we will stake our eternal souls upon. Jesus Christ and The Bible with their eyewitness accounts or trust to one man (Joseph Smith) that he was right. Because if Joseph Smith is wrong in this one doctrine of God and becoming and progressing to godhood then he is not to be trusted on his other writings.

    I say these things with respect and prayerful concern that I “may speak the truth in love” always.

    Richard

  37. August 4, 2010 at 9:29 pm

    Me-I am sorry for being vague that’s actually one thing that my friends are trying to correct about me

    You said: deny the false interpretations of their teachings yes, but not their teachings

    Me–What I would like to know is how can one deny the false interpretations of their teachings but not their teachings.when one needs an interpretation to teach. and as such you would deny there teachings which by admission would have stemmed from false interpretation.

  38. August 5, 2010 at 7:17 am

    I rather like catz’s response to the same point

    She Said:In traditional meaning, “doctrine” is the body of teachings of a group. Obviously, the LDS church means something else. It is confusing. Some of what your leaders taught was only their own opinion, not “doctrine”. It is not clear what the difference between “teachings” or “opinions” and “doctrine”.

  39. catzgalore said,

    August 5, 2010 at 11:45 am

    Shem, you said…
    I do not switch definitions. I use the definition that is appropriate to the conversation and time.

    I cannot bear the presence of the bear.
    I need to record that record.
    She had a fit that the dress didn’t fit.

    In these sentences, it is clear what the words mean because of the context. It’s because we’ve been taught that words can be spelled the same but have different meanings. Every school child knows this. The definitions switch. If they did not switch, then the sentences make no sense.

    The trouble with the word “salvation” is that YOU switch definitions without even being aware of it. You have spent a lifetime being taught those definitions, and it is second nature to you to switch. We, however, have one basic definition of the word “salvation” and the only time it switches in our mind is when the word is used outside of meaning “salvation” in a Christian context… I googled “salvation” and found this.

    •redemption: (theology) the act of delivering from sin or saving from evil
    •a means of preserving from harm or unpleasantness; “tourism was their economic salvation”; “they turned to individualism as their salvation”
    •the state of being saved or preserved from harm
    •saving someone or something from harm or from an unpleasant situation; “the salvation of his party was the president’s major concern”

    •In religion, salvation is the concept that God or other Higher Power, as part of Divine Providence, saves humanity from spiritual death or Eternal Damnation by providing for them an eternal life (cf. afterlife). …

    You see, outside the LDS church, “salvation” in a theological sense only has ONE meaning; not six. YOU might be thinking of the “proper” definition, but we are still thinking of what WE mean by “salvation”.

    This applies to many other LDS words. Words do not always mean the same INSIDE the church and OUTSIDE the church.

    The word “doctrine” in the dictionary means this: something that is taught. So a synonym could be “teaching” or “instruction” or even “opinion”.

    In the Christian realm, doctrines vary from church to church, because different denominations or pastors have slightly different interpretations of scriptures. It is not generally a big deal; unless those doctrines vary significantly. Anything a church teaches on a regular basis is considered “doctrine”. Usually, it is considered the basic beliefs of the church, and whatever else is taught conforms to those basic beliefs. Sometimes, churches have Doctrinal Statements to summarize the teachings of the church.

    In the LDS realm, it seems that teachings are what is taught, and “doctrines” are whatever the current leader says is the truth. What was taught in the past is not necessarily a “doctrine”. There doesn’t seem to be a good way to know the difference, therefore no good way to find out what the church as a whole believes is NOW the truth. Just because I find it on the lds.org site doesn’t mean that it is “doctrine”. Joseph Smith and Brigham Young were the early leaders of your church, but many of their writings have been abandoned or supressed. Many of the things that were taught as truth are no longer considered truth. I know you disagree; we’ve had that discussion before. I do know that you are not supposed to read things about the LDS church that were written by former members or anyone outside the church. Why is that?

    So do you have a list of what you consider “doctrine”? Is this a matter of opinion, or does your church send out a list, or can I assume that if it is in your scriptures it is “doctrine”? Are you bound to follow what is said if it is considered a “doctrine”? What about “teachings”? How do you know which is which, and why does it matter?

  40. rblandjr said,

    August 5, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    Catz,

    Your last comment was excellent.

    All,

    Let me see if I can boil down how one interprets or studies the text of the Bible.

    Exegesis is a theological term used to describe an approach to interpreting a passge in the Bible by critical analysis. Proper exegesis includes using the context around the passage comparing it wth other parts of the Bible, and applying an understanding of the languageand customs of the time of the writing, in an attempt to understand clearly what the original writer intended to convey. In oter wrds, it is trying to “pull out” of the passage the meaning inherent in it. The opposit of exegesis is eisegesis which mean to read into the passage your pacticular views.

    Hope that makes clear what I was trying to say in earlier comments.

    Thanks

  41. shematwater said,

    August 5, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    CATZ

    I do not switch definitions. If I do it is, as you say, an accident, and I do my best to correct it as soon as I realize I made it. I try my hardest to use Salvation to mean only the entrance into Heaven, and not Exaltation. I do my best to keep these two separate because I understand that many have difficulty altering the way they think to understand what another is saying.
    The problem is not the difinition itself, but what I showed in the reason behind the definition. You cannot separate God’s presence and Salvation because your doctrine does not allow it. We can, because our doctrine demands it.
    I still hold that for both of us the basic conspet of salvation is entrance into Heaven. Can you agree with this basic statement without adding anything to it to make it be what you want? Simple put; if we are saved are we in heaven? Give a yes or no.
    The problem comes not in our definition of Salvation, but in our understanding of Heaven.

    NATHAN

    You do need an interpretation. However, as people are always so fond of wanting us to interpret the Bible by its own words, let us do the same with the leaders of the LDS church. As such I can claim false doctrine being taught just as well as you can claim false doctrine in us.

    RBLAND

    Well, I can see the progression of man, and the doctrine that God was once a man in the Bible, despite the references you give. My wife is mad at me, so I will give an explanaiton later, and address the verses you site. Unitl then, God Bless.

  42. August 5, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    IShem– As such can I claim false doctrine being taught j

    me– you have confronted your leaders I assume– as we are after all to preach the truth and confront those who are not; even if they are you “leaders”.

    If not that would put you in just as much error as them because then not only are you putting your own faith at risk you allow others to do so know the wrongs

  43. catzgalore said,

    August 5, 2010 at 9:30 pm

    Shem said… “The problem comes not in our definition of Salvation, but in our understanding of Heaven.”

    He then said… I still hold that for both of us the basic conspet of salvation is entrance into Heaven. Can you agree with this basic statement without adding anything to it to make it be what you want? Simple put; if we are saved are we in heaven? Give a yes or no.

    I cannot give you a “yes” or “no” until I define “heaven”. Heaven from the Christian’s point of view is being present with the Lord. Without the Lord’s presence, it is not Heaven.

    If “heaven” means “present with the Lord” then yes, being saved is being in Heaven. If “heaven” means anything else, it is not “Heaven”.

    The LDS definition of “heaven” is not the same as the Christian definition. Surprise!

  44. rblandjr said,

    August 6, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    All,

    Since the question about what gets us entrance into Heaven was brought up, I decided to see what just what the Bible says about this. Just what is Gods standard for us to spend an eternity with Him in Heaven?

    Here are two verses that I think all of us would agree are answers to that question.

    Matt. 5:8
    “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

    Matt. 5:48
    Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

    These verses are short and to the point. Jesus is speaking about the “blessed” that will “see God”.

    What is the condition or standard that is required by God for the “blessed” to “see God” ?

    The “blessed” must “be perfect” and “pure in heart” before they can “see God”.

    When must they meet this standard?
    Now, “be perfect” and pure. These are in the present tense so it must be now at this present time in their lives.

    With that in mind who meets these qualifications?
    Jesus Christ is the only one.

    So what is the destination for the rest of us who are not now “perfect” and “pure”?

    Matt. 7:13 gives the answer from Jesus’ own words.
    Enter ye i at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

    He says that the destination of the “many” that go down the “broad gate” which leads to “destruction” (outer darkness).

    Seems pretty hopeless for the whole Human race that are sinful and incapable of perfection.

    Guess we will be with the “many” in outer darkness.

    But why would Jesus say one verse later that, “strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it” ?

    Undoubtedly there has to be someway that sinful and imperfect humans can find “life”?

    Well Jesus stated in John 14:6 that, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh unto the Father but by me”

    Since Jesus is the only one that met Gods standard of perfection then he is the only one capable of this.

    In Heb. 10:14 says how sinful man can be “perfect” in Gods eyes now.

    “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.”

    Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for us is the only way that this sinful man can be forgiven and spend an eternity in His presence. That is truely amazing grace that has saved a wretch like me.

    That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. Eph. 2:7

    So in Gods eyes when He sees me He sees His Son and His perfect sacrifice. Hallelujah What A Savior

  45. catzgalore said,

    August 6, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    Something I still don’t understand….

    Shem, you said… Oh, and by the way, my previous post was more a joke than anything,

    what did you mean by that, what was a joke?

  46. shematwater said,

    August 7, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    CATZ

    “You should know that if we use many definitions that no verse from the scriptures is going to pose any problem in fitting just perfectly with our doctrine.”
    This was said in sarcasm, and thus was more of a joke than anything else.

    Why is it that you refuse to answer a simple question. I gave no standard to the answer, no definition to the words. I purposely did this so that you could use whatever definition you wanted. As you refuse to do this you fail to understand what I am saying, and seem to be purposely trying to drive a wedge between my words and yourself.
    In all truth, for the purpose of the question I gave the definition of heaven does not matter. So, ignoring the details of what heaven is, does salvation mean that you will be there? In other words, according to general Christian doctrine a person who gains salvation will be in heaven, regardless of what heaven is?
    In all truth what you said about Heaven illustrates my point beautifully. It is not in our definition of Salvation that we differ, but in our definition of Heaven.

    NATHAN

    You assume that the leader of the LDS church are in error. I have seen no such error in them. I know there is no error, for God has revealed it to me, and his word is good enough for me. As such I have no need to confront them.
    Unless you are talking about local leaders, and then I have at times, when I thought they were far enough out of line to warrent it.

    RBLAND

    To show where I see the proof that God was once a man, I will reference one verse of Scripture. John 5: 19
    “Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.”
    If the Son can only do what the Father hath done, then he could not have performed the Atonement unless he Father had done likewise. As the Atonement can only be performed by a mortal man who is subject to death, the Father must have lived as a mortal at one time in order to accomplish the act. This would allow his Son to later do the same.

    As to your other references:
    Numbers 23:19; Hosea 11:9
    These verses show only that he is not currently a man, not that he never was. They use only the present tense.

    Jn.4:24; Lk. 24:39
    Christ is not a spirit, as this Luke passage clearly shows. As he could not be a physical being if his Father were not (refer back to John 5: 19) we can conclude that he is. Also, with all the many references to the body of God I think it safe to say that the single refence to him being a spirit is mistranslated.

    Ps.90:2; 102:27; Isa 57:15; 1 Tim. 1:17
    I never denied this.

    Ps. 102 :25-27; Mal. 3:6
    I don’t really deny this either, as far as our history is concerned.

  47. catzgalore said,

    August 7, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    Shem you said …
    “You should know that if we use many definitions that no verse from the scriptures is going to pose any problem in fitting just perfectly with our doctrine.”
    This was said in sarcasm, and thus was more of a joke than anything else.

    One of the problems of writing is that there is no tone of voice. But in this case, your sarcasm would have gone over my head. Sorry. When I read that I was incredulous that you could say that, but I thought that you were speaking the truth of what you believe. And you confused me even more.

    Shem you also said…
    Why is it that you refuse to answer a simple question. I gave no standard to the answer, no definition to the words. I purposely did this so that you could use whatever definition you wanted. As you refuse to do this you fail to understand what I am saying, and seem to be purposely trying to drive a wedge between my words and yourself.

    It isn’t a simple question, Shem…. you ask a complex one.

    Does salvation= being in Heaven?

    How can one answer quickly yes or no when what salvation and Heaven means is not clarified?? Especially when I know that what you call “salvation” is not what I call “salvation” and what I you call “heaven” is not what I call “Heaven”? Without defining, what I say is not necessarily understood as what I meant.

    What do you want? Someone to say, yes, if you are saved you will be in heaven. So we can say we believe the same thing? But you and I both know that we don’t mean the same thing by the same words.

    We don’t believe the same thing. LDS God is not Christian God, LDS Jesus is not Christian Jesus, LDS Holy Spirit is not Christian Holy Spirit. LDS Jesus provided the opportunity to be saved. Christian Jesus paid the FULL price for my sins. LDS Salvation means you might get to be with the Lord if you do enough; otherwise you will just get to be with other “good” people. Christian Salvation means that if I am saved by Grace I will dwell with the Lord for eternity… LDS Heaven has levels depending on your works. You may or may not get to be with either the father or Jesus. Christian Heaven is being present with the Lord…

    I could go on and on. There are too many differences in definition to make a simple statement and agree with each other on anything.

    I am not driving a wedge. The Word is driving a wedge, separating truth from untruth.

    I cannot agree with anything you say as long as you believe there are many gods; that Jesus merely took over our debt and we must still pay HIM back; and that the only ones that will dwell forever with our precious Lord are LDS. This is not merely a casual conversation about trying to meet in the middle; there is no middle ground.

    Jesus knew I could never satisfy the standard of perfection put forth by God; so He satisfied it on my behalf. I will forever be grateful; and I will love Him the best I can for the rest of my life. Every day I learn a bit more of what that means; I will praise Him forever!!!!

  48. rblandjr said,

    August 8, 2010 at 12:08 am

    Shem,
    I appreciate your response to me concerning where you feel the doctrine of man becoming God is clearly taught in scripture. I am so glad that you went to the book of John. It is one of my favorites. In fact it is the first book of the Bible that I poured through after I trusted Christ as my personal Savior. The book was alive. I was underlining all these verses that God was speaking to me with. This was incredible it was making sense to me now. Let us look first at the context or purpose that John wrote his gospel.

    John 20:30, 31
    “And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name”

    Cleary he wants all to know that because of the signs and wonders that Christ did, that he was and is the Son of God. To prove Christ was Deity.

    John 5 begins with Jesus in “Jerusalem healing a man, telling him to rise, take up his bed and walk.” Well this is the Sabbath and the Jews were hot about him breaking the law. So they come upon Jesus in v.15 desiring to kill him.

    John 5:17-23 (King James Version)

    17But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.

    Jesus’ point is that God was working continuously and, since Jesus Himself worked continuously, He also must be God. God does not need a day of rest for he never wearies (Is.40:28). For Jesus self-defense to be valid, the same factors that apply to God must also apply to Him. Jesus is Lord of the Sabbath (Matt. 12:8)!

    18Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the Sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.

    The Jews instantly grasped the implications of Jesus’ statement in (v. 17).

    That He was claiming He was God.

    19Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

    Jesus says emphatically “I am telling you the truth.” He is responding to the Jews hostility at the implications of Jesus’ assertion of equality with God, In fact Jesus tied His activities of healing on the Sabbath directly to the Father. The Son never took independent action that set Him against the Father because the Son only did those things that were coincident with and coextensive with all that the Father does. Jesus implied that the only One who could do what the Gather does must be as great as the Father.

    20For the Father loveth the Son and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
    21For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.

    Just as God the Father had power to raise the dead (1 Kings 17:17-24) so does the Lord Jesus.

    22For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
    23That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.

    God entrusted all judgment to the Son so that all men should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Again He is stating His full and complete equality with the Father. (Phil.2:9-11)

    Jesus makes five claims to equality with God:

    1.He is equal with God in His person (vv.17,18)
    2.He is equal with God in His works (vv. 19,20)
    3.He is equal with God in His power and sovereignty (v.21)
    4.He is equal with God in His judgment (v.22)
    5.He is equal with god in His honor (v.23)

    Jesus has always been God, (John1:1) and that his miracles proved his equality with God. It doesn’t lower the Father to having been a man and becoming a God.

  49. August 8, 2010 at 8:43 am

    Shem-You assume that the leader of the LDS church are in error.

    Me- Yes I assume they are in error and in fact they are this has been shown both with scripture as compared to the current mormon teachings by the author of this blog, others on this blog, other blogs like this one, and myself

    Shem-s he could not be a physical being if his Father were not

    Me-This statement would seem to imply that the same rules that apply for flesh and blood mortals- apply to God this is not so in Col 1 verse 15 it os declared that “He(Christ) is the visible image of the invisible God”

  50. August 8, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Catz-I am not driving a wedge. The Word is driving a wedge, separating truth from untruth (Matt 10:34-35)

    Me-you are right the word thus truth is not only exclusive inherently it is not what people want to hear : hence double talk and perhaps circular logic–this is done in order to maintain some semblance of control

  51. rblandjr said,

    August 8, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    Nathanael,

    Thanks for your site. The information is clear and to the point.

    I want people to actually say what they mean instead of beating around the bush. If it is “truth” then it will stand when measured according to Gods standard the Bible.

    All I know is if the Bible states something clearly and consistently throughout. Then who are we to argue with the creator. Seems pretty arrogant.

    Shem,

    Could you go back and look at my comment(44). What do you think?

    If that is Gods standard to spending eternal life in his presence. Let me ask you this serious question. I am not trying to be mean or belittling with this question. Because these are serious things when it concerns a persons soul and eternal destination.
    If as Matt. 5:48 states that Gods standard is that we “be perfect”.

    Are you perfect?

    What are you trying to do to be perfect?

    Has it worked?

    Don’t you just get tired of trying to carry around that weight of trying to be righteous,of trying to measure up to Gods standard?

    Seems like the only answers to this dilema,that the Lds church has provided has only multiplied that burden you are bearing without any assurance of peace.

    Jesus said, “Come unto me all ye who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest”.

    I love the words to a song a friend of mine Phil Cross wrote and sings says it all concern what Christ has done for the redeemed by his blood.

    “I was a slave in a foreign land. So very far from the Fathers loving hand. He rescued me one glorious day, he brought me out and paid a debt I could not pay. I am redeemed. I am redeemed. Jesus loosed the chains of sin and set me free. I am redeemed, I am redeemed.

    But still I live in a foreign land but now I’m free according to redemptions plan. And soon I’l join the robed in white called the redeemed. We’ll sing a song holy angels cannot sing. I am redeemed, Iam redeemed, Jesus loosed the chains of sin and set me free. Iam redeemed,I am redemed.

    Some glorious morning they will come from all nations from every generation. Side by side they will march into the Celestial City of Jehovah.And in perfect harmony they will begin humming a new song. A song written by God himself and arranged for all his children. And as the saved by grace approach this land of their dreams the host of heaven will step aside even the angels will be silent. For they cannot sing this new song. For this song is reserved for the voices who once cried out for a redeemer those washed in his blood. I am redeemed, I’m one of those. I’m revived. Glory,glory Christ is mine. He’s mine, oh to him I now reside. Jesus loosed the chains of sin and set me free.

  52. catzgalore said,

    August 9, 2010 at 8:36 am

    Shem, what does “testimony” mean to you as an LDS?

    Christians, what does “testimony” mean to you?

  53. August 9, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Catz-Christians, what does “testimony” mean to you?

    Me–When someone says “share your testimony ” to me– I think to share not only what how and why God through Christ helped me get to where I am today; it also means that I share the story of Christ with that person(s) and then go from there..

  54. shematwater said,

    August 10, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    RBLAND

    I have read that post, and, as usual, I think you have misunderstood the meaning.
    Yes, Christ says to be perfect. However, he does not give a time limit to completing the task. I do not believe that any man will attain the perfection of God in this life, but I do believe that such perfection is required. What is required in this life is a preparation to learn perfection in the next. This is the doctrine of progression. We will never attain absolute perfection in this life, but we can eventually. Howe do we know this? Simple. God has commanded it, and he will not give us a command we cannot fulfilled, as that would be unjust, and he is perfectly just.

    The standard for this life is to do all we can, and with his help, a little more than we can. And if we do this we will be blessed with Glory in the next life were we will continue our progression until we are perfect.
    The pure in heart are not always perfect in action, but have a perfect desire to do good. This is what is meant, and if we can attain this we have done what is required. It is a simple task, and with the help of Christ a very light burden.

    CATZ

    It was a simple question, and it is not the word driving a wedge, but you.
    You said “I cannot agree with anything you say as long as you believe there are many gods.”
    So, you cannot agree that Christ created the Heavens and the Earth. You cannot agree that Adam was the first man to live on this Earth. You cannot agree that Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt by the powr of God. You cannot agree that the Bible is a dinively enpired work of scripture. You cannot agree that Christ was born of Mary, was baptized by John, preached the Gospel for some years, and was then crucified for the world. You cannot agree that he rose the third. You cannot agree that his apostles were sent to preach the gospel.
    It is your attitude that is causing the dificulty in discussion, not the Bible, and not my words. You are determined to disagree with everything I say, regardless of what it is, simply because I say it and I am a Mormon. You cannot have anything in common with Mormons, which causes a wedge between you and my words, preventing you from understanding what I am saying. I can do nothing to assist you in understanding, for the problem is not on my end of the conversation.

    NATHAN

    There has never been any proof of error. The only proof is that they disagree with you, which is not an error.

  55. catzgalore said,

    August 10, 2010 at 8:36 pm

    “You are determined to disagree with everything I say, regardless of what it is, simply because I say it and I am a Mormon.”

    Then why did I ask the question about testimony?? I finally found something we could basically agree on. A testimony is testifying about what God has done for us. Even though the content may differ, we agree on what it is.

    Of course I agree with much of what the Mormon church teaches. You have listed some of what we agree upon. We were speaking about SALVATION. By simplifying the question, you try to make it appear that we agree. However, a closer look at the doctrine of your church makes it clear that we do not.

  56. August 10, 2010 at 8:44 pm

    Shem-There has never been any proof of error.

    Me-There are plenty of boos websites and blogs that all agree the mormonism IS IN Error and yes in that sense they do agree with me

    If I may answer in Catz’s sted
    Shem-So, you cannot agree

    Me-Christians CAN Agree that mormonism is a false religion and as I have stated much proof has been shown

    Me-your religion denies biblical doctrine

    1.they are monotheistic
    2.they are anti-trinatarian
    4. they are humanistic
    5.they do not accept the Bible as whole and final revelation
    6. They preach that Satans first lie wasn’t a lie at all

    which goes to show that mormons in fact have NOTHING i common with Christian

  57. rblandjr said,

    August 12, 2010 at 7:33 pm

    Shem,
    Jesus said unless your righteousness exceed the Pharisees you shall in no wise enter in.

    Throughout scripture man seeks to do when Christ has already done.

    The scripture I quoted is correct in its exegesis. You must be perfect. That is present tense. That is right now. NOT IN THE FUTURE. You must be perfect now.

    How about your life right now ,is it perfect, holy as God. If it is not then you are condemned in that condition.

    It is now that God expects perfection of you.

    Could you answer that question simply with a yes or no. Do not put any qualifcations, conditions or buts in there. Just simply tell me if you are perfect and Holy as God is right now?

    I am not trying to be unreasonable. I am trying to get to the heart of the problem. Do you know what the heart of the problem is Shem?

    Jesus told the Phariees that it was the inside that needed to be cleaned not the outside.

    On Sept. 17, 1977 I humbly bowed my heart realizing that I was a sinner, by nature and deed. Because of that I was condemened in Gods sight and without hope. That is when I asked him to forgive me of my sin, i confessed my sinfulness asking Christs sacrifice to be placed on my account. He did exactly what he promised. He saved me for all eternity, IN GODS EYES HE Sees Christ when he looks at me. Not that I am perfect but the perfect Savior paid my debt. My future is Guaranteed that I spend it in his presence worsipping him, his Son and the HOly Spirit. That is what I know based upon the truth of the word of God. God desires for me to be set apart or sanctified. That is the work of the Spirit in and through my life. This work of sanctification does not determine my destination(God the Fathers presence). What that reveals is the quality of my works, is it gold or silver or is it wood hay or stubble. If it is the latter then I won’t have any rewards. Do you know what we do with those rewards that God gives us? We lay them at the feet of Jesus in humble thanks for what he has done.

    My prayer is that you see this simple truth and that God will penetrate your heart so that you might know that peace that passes all understanding. To be completely free from the weight of my sin and guilt is beyond all comprehension.

    May Gods Holy Spirit burn this truth into your heart so you might know his eternal life through Christ Jesus alone. Not a church but the Christ our Savior.

  58. August 12, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    Shem,

    what is the definition of sin–is sin not something that keeps you from God–For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”–IS THAT NOT SO?

    –By that definition man cannot enter heaven thus we needed a set of laws to follow in order to attain a sinless life-a bridge if you will so that we could enter heaven

    then came Jesus born of the Holy spirit and Mary called “the lamb of God, born to take away the sins of the world”

    I myself am a sinner I may not have killed,robbed a bank, had sex outside of marriage, or even cheated on a test–but I am a sinner just the same..why? Because I allow my disability to get the best of me–I use it to, lie and cheat my way through life I have lost friends a girlfriends alike, with these attitudes; that’s why I am a sinner because not only am missing out on what God has for me

    I am ruining that for others–But shem The Christ died so I wouldn’t have to be this way anymore..he took the weight of the guilt,shame and the inevitable evil thoughts annd actions that came with them AWAY giving my a chance at a life I Swear to you I thought I wanted to believe I already had.

    and you know what shem– He did it knowing that I would screw it all up and while he said ‘Go and sin no more”
    he didn’t say “before I let you in you have to be baptized a mormon” or “you have to take communion with water only so may times a month”

    HE DID IT FREE BECAUSE HE LOVES me and He loves you too He doesn’t worry about how many times you take communion that’s outside He worries about the heart..

  59. shematwater said,

    August 14, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    CATZ

    I have never tried to deny the differences, nor have I tried to make them less then what they are. They are there, and I am thankful for them. If I were trying to convert you to the LDS faith I would be more likely to emphasize them, as it is the differences that make us the true church, and not the similarities.
    However, I am not trying to convert you. I am only trying to explain LDS doctrine in a way that you can actually understand not only what it is, but why it is. As such I try to start with what is similar, and then work to what is different. It is a method of teaching.
    The real question now is this. Do you want to understand the doctrine, and why it is the doctrine, or are you only seeking the little knowledge necessary for you to continue to be hostile to it?

    RBLAND

    He does use the present tense, that is true. So let me ask you this. I am not perfect now, at this moment, but if there came a time that I was would I then qualify?
    This is my point. One cannot enter Heaven until one is perfect, which I have never denied. What I said is that the doors are ready to receive us when we do attain that perfection. For when we do than at that present we will be perfect, and thus will meet the qualifications.

    NATHAN

    There have been plenty of websites, but all they are are opinions and interpretations. Few are truly accurate to the actual doctrine of the church. They prove no error. They only prove that we believe in different doctrine. That is all that can be proven.

    1.they are monotheistic: I thought you were also monotheistic, so I fail to see a difference here.

    2.they are anti-trinatarian: The trinity is not Biblical doctrine, as there is no place in the Bible that actually states what the trinity doctrine teaches.

    4. they are humanistic: So is the Bible, as it is all about the salvation and glorification of the Human race.

    5.they do not accept the Bible as whole and final revelation: The Bible does not accept this, so it is not a biblical doctrine.

    6. They preach that Satans first lie wasn’t a lie at all: I think I answered this one before, and to you (twice if I remember). To say it again quickly, he did lie, so saying that we teach this is an outright lie on you part, as I have explain the truth to you.

  60. rblandjr said,

    August 14, 2010 at 9:15 pm

    Shem,

    Thank you for your honesty.

    Since you are not now perfect you must also understand this that we are not promised tomorrow or even our next breath.
    You must strive to attain perfection so that you might be deemed worthy to have the door opened to you.

    Sounds like you have an impossible job ahead of you. And considering what has transpired thus far in your life the future of attaining perfection looks hopeless. Sounds like no peace or rest. Your only companions seem to be guilt over your continual failure. Burden, guilt, weighing you down. I am sure deep down inside where no one can see your heart you must be crying out for some rest and peace. I do not know how you can live that way Shem.

    I am so glad that on that night many many years ago I laid all those burdens and the guilt upon Christ. What peace and joy filled my heart.

    Heb. 10 :14 “For by one offering he hath forever perfected them that are sanctified.”

    Christ’s one offering for me has made me perfect in Gods eyes now. “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
    “The Lord hath done great things for us whereof we are glad.” “He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my going.”

    It was all Him and He alone is worthy.
    “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.” Blessing ad honour and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.”

    Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

    My prayer is that you would finally give up all the striving and allow Christ to truely be your burden bearer, your rest, and your peace.

  61. August 15, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    Shem-There have been plenty of websites, but all they are are opinions and interpretations Few are truly accurate to the actual doctrine of the church. They prove no error. They only prove that we believe in different doctrine. That is all that can be proven.

    Me-It’s funny that everyone of them would have the exact facts as the other–Could that be because they may be right. Tht they didn’t buy into some bull an illiterate farmer was peddling so he could get attention

    Yes! they prove that we believe in different doctrine. They prove no error. Differing doctrine is the error and the Bible is clear if your following any scripture other then the bible you have had a very bad day (Gal 1:6-9)

    Shem- Few are truly accurate to the actual doctrine of the church.

    Me-the Actual doctrine of Your church you mean
    they are Spot on with that of Christ Jesus’s church

    Shem-Few are truly accurate \

    Me-is this you admitting that some may be right?

    1. they are monotheistic–the mormons teach that God progressed to his current status like his father before–Christians Do not Believe this and the Bible does not teach it.
    Mormons believe that God, Jesus and the Holy spirit are not one in the same but are 3 individual Gods–Christians know this to be False–as evidenced be Jesus testimony in John the seven times and then again to pilate

    2.The word Tri means 3 and although the word trinity is not in the Bible the concept is there from Genesis to revelation for instance when The Christ was baptised we are told that the Holy Spirit desceded to him like a dove then the father spoke

    so in that one narrative you have the 3 persons of the trinity represented

    4.they are humanistic:-only humanists would proclaim that they can become God giving themselves equally with one that has no equal

    5.PROVE it using more then one verse taken out of context

  62. catzgalore said,

    August 17, 2010 at 9:46 am

    Shem, you asked…

    The real question now is this. Do you want to understand the doctrine, and why it is the doctrine, or are you only seeking the little knowledge necessary for you to continue to be hostile to it?

    It is not either/or. I understand enough to know that your church is not true, but I am not hostile to it. My heart breaks for those caught in the deception.

  63. shematwater said,

    August 17, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    CATZ

    So the answer is “Only enough.” You are hostile.

    RBLAND

    I feel guilt, but that is only natural. I feel no heavy burden, because I have the greatest teacher and helper to assist me in my progress to perfection, and I have his promise that he will not abandon me in this. Christ cannot make me perfect, but he can assist me in attaining that perfection. For this I am grateful everyday, and the task is made light as he lifts with me. One day, with his help, I will truly attain perfection, and then I can stand before my Father in Heaven with my head high knowing that I have done what was required and am truly worthy of his praise.
    This is what I seek, and what Christ has promised. It is easy, and a joy all the time.

    NATHAN

    Different doctrine is not proof of error. Interpretation is not proof of error. The only proof of error when it comes to matters of eternity and God is the witness of God himself. I cannot prove your doctrine wrong any more than you can prove mine, because religion and things of eternity are unprovable through the mortal world.
    I can know that you are in error only through the witness of the Spirit spoken directly to me. You can know I am in error only by the same method. As such, no website, no man made organization will ever prove anything.

    Monotheistic: This is the belief and worship of only one God. This I believe in, as I worship only the Father.

    Trinity: The idea of a single being in three parts is not Biblical. Even your example does nothing to support it. The Son was in the water, the Holy Ghost descended, and the Father spoke from Heaven. Wonderful. It seems fairly clear in this story that three separate and distinct entities were performing different actions in the event. They were not all one lump some of a single entity, but three individuals.

    Humanistic: The Bible teaches that we will be gods. We are the offspring of God (Acts 17: 29), heirs of God and Joint-heirs with Christ (Rom. 8: 17), and we will attain the same state of Glory as the Father (2 Cor. 3: 18), so that when he comes we will be like him (1 Jn. 3: 2). For this reason it is written that we are gods, and the children of God (Ps. 82: 6; John 10: 34).
    This is the doctrine that we believe, and that we teach, as it is found in the Bible.

    Final Revelation: One cannot prove a negative. As I have stated that it is not in the Bible, I have stated a negative

    Satan’s Lie: I re-read the blog, which is the one I was referencing. I gave an answer to this topic, but I found no reply to my answer. Of course, I did only skim the posts, so please point any out that I missed.
    Goind off this I stick by what I said. You stated that we do not teach that Satan lied at this time, which I clearly showed is not true. As such for you to again make the accusation, after it has been proven false, is dishonest and thus rightly termed a lie.

  64. catzgalore said,

    August 20, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    Shem, your answer made me laugh. Again, you’ve put words in my mouth I did not say.

    “CATZ

    So the answer is “Only enough.” You are hostile.”

    I do get annoyed sometimes, when you twist my words and make me say what I didn’t say, when you try to trap me… I feel pity for you, because you must resort to those things because you have no good answers…

    Your question…
    The real question now is this. Do you want to understand the doctrine, and why it is the doctrine, or are you only seeking the little knowledge necessary for you to continue to be hostile to it?

    Usually when someone asks a question you say yes or no. This one cannot be answered simply. Do I say Yes, Yes, No, or No, yes, no?? Can you see that?

    So I’ll give you more of my answer…. I have tried to understand “the doctrine” and why it is “the doctrine” but I have received NO CLEAR ANSWERS what “the doctrine of the church” really is. I have even asked you for a list, or a link to a list. NO ANSWER. I’ve studied a lot on the lds site. What I’ve found is that some of what I learned about the Mormon church as a teen is no longer taught… but yet “the church has not changed.” I’ve learned that some of the older “truths” are no longer “truth” but supressed or discarded, such as the Journal of Discourses… or some of the historical things denied.

    It seems that the “real” truth of your church can only be discovered when you become a part of the church. Since I am not willing to align myself with the LDS church, I will never know the “real” truth.

    Am I hostile? Maybe sometimes, but my hostility is toward the mysteries, secretive, “sacred”, changeable “truth” and deceptive actions and discussions. I do get angry when you twist my words or change definitions or confuse me on purpose and say “it was a joke”… When older teachings of your church are denied, and you say your church doesn’t change when it is CLEAR that it has. Your dishonesty to yourself causes me pain. You don’t answer questions that you don’t want to. You change the subject or say something flaming when you can’t answer. So yes sometimes I feel hostile. But it changes to a great sadness. You’ve missed something. You’ve missed a lot. So I pray for you…

  65. shematwater said,

    August 21, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    CATZ

    When I said your answer was “Only Enough” this was an interpretation of your words. Your words conveyed the message that went like this: “I don’t want to learn what doctrine we share, only the doctrine that is different.”

    The difficulty is that you want to think that anything that any member professes to believe is the doctrine of the church. Like your continual insistance that it was doctrine that men lived on the moon.
    Just because someone believes it does not mean it is or ever was doctrine.

    Another problem you have is that you are more willing to accept the word of those who do not know the doctrine over the word of those who do. I have, on more than one occassion, corrected the false ideas put on these very bloggs, but the same idea keeps coming back with you professing it to be the doctrine of the church. It is something that I have noticed frequently.

    The third problem is that you are hostile, and yet you do not realize it. You may want to know the doctrine, but you are constantly fighting any attempt on my part to actually explain it in the simplest way I can.

    You ask for a list of doctrine. Go to LDS.ORG and look up the index a-z section, and read it. It is all doctrine.
    Also, read the 13 articles of faith (http://scriptures.lds.org/en/a_of_f/1) as they are the basic doctrines of the church.
    The book Mormon Doctrine also does a fabulous job of explaining all the doctrine that is necessary for man kind and appropriate for the world.
    I can tell you this also: If it is not found in the standard works it is no longer actively taught.

    Those things in the Journal of Discourses are not discarded or supressed. They are simply left for the membership to find them on their own if they feel so inclined to do so. For the first several decades the Lord was pooring out much truth to his saints. However, with the introduction of radio and TV, when it was made possible that the entire world could listen in to the meetings these things were ended, as they are intended for the faithful, and not the world. God has commanded us not to “triffle with sacred things” or “cast your pearls before swine” and we follow his words.

  66. catzgalore said,

    August 22, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    Shem, you must be a real idiot to not see the changes that your so-called leaders have made over the years. How on earth can you possibly believe all that junk?

    Okay, that was not how I really feel. THAT was a hostile answer… in reality, I know that you are not an idiot, and I know that if not for the grace of God I would be in the same boat you are, believing false prophets.

    In all honesty, I am not “hostile” toward your church, I just am being careful when dealing with false prophets. Mostly, my heart aches for those who feel trapped in a religion where they will never be good enough, never measure up, always fall short of what is expected of them. You obviously think that you will be able to attain perfection, you don’t seem to agonize over it. But there are many LDS who see the truth, that they will never be good enough… none of us can ever be. Only Jesus is good enough.

    This blog is for those whose hearts are aching to know the Lord, and those who know that there is something amiss in a church that teaches that you can earn your way to the highest heaven to dwell with God. It was not designed for those who are satisfied with what the LDS church teaches, or for those who think they can make it on their own.

    If you think you see hostility in my attitude, I am sorry. I pray for you often, but know that you are convinced you are “right” and believe the “correct” church. If you think that non-LDS are “swine” then why do you post here?

    I am asking God to show me my hostility and asking His forgiveness. It isn’t right for me to be hostile. I am not FEELING hostile; but feelings aren’t a good judge of what is truth or not, are they?

  67. shematwater said,

    August 23, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    CATZ

    Your example, while hostile, is also verbally violent, which is not what I said you were. Hostility does not have to be direct attacks. It is more common for hostility to be passive, or hidden. This also makes hostility very hard to see in ourselves.
    I will admit that I am hostile frequently, and likely more often than I realize. When I do realize it I try to correct myself, but I do not always succeed.

    As to this blog, I understand its purpose. The reason I post is because it is using false information to attain its purpose. Thus it is misleading to those who might read it.
    I have said before that I am not here to convince you or anyone else that the LDS church is right, but to correct errors so that others will know the truth if they come across these blogs.

    Now, I never said I could attain perfection on my own, as you seem to suggest (example of error). I can attain perfection, but only through the grace of Christ.
    Also, there are no changes, which is another common error that is frequently used in these blogs, even after corrected.

    You get my point. You believe that we teach something, and you refuse to accept that you are wrong, even when shown the actual truth of our doctrine. This is what I mean by being passively hostile.

  68. catzgalore said,

    August 24, 2010 at 11:12 am

    Hey we have something in common, Shem….

    I will admit that I am hostile frequently, and likely more often than I realize. When I do realize it I try to correct myself, but I do not always succeed.

    😉

    The first LDS article of faith is the same one that a Christian church might have.
    1 We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.

    I can agree with that statement as defined in TRADITIONAL terms. But I do NOT agree with those same words as defined from an LDS point of view.

    THAT’S why I can’t agree to find what we DO agree upon; because your words may be the same, but YOU DON’T ALWAYS MEAN THE SAME THING…..
    and I don’t trust that you EVER mean the same thing!

  69. catzgalore said,

    August 24, 2010 at 11:15 am

    sorry, missed a tag again. That’s the trouble with not being able to edit posts. 😕

  70. shematwater said,

    August 24, 2010 at 6:44 pm

    CATZ

    I try my best to always explain my meaning. I rarely leave something at a single word, or even a single phrase, but I expound on it, take it apart into its separate components, and try to help you understand what it is that we believe. If you are basing your understanding of what I say based on only a few words you will never understand the meaning.

    Going back to the whole heaven and refinaincing the debt that started the blog, let me give you the actually doctrine that I was trying to show, not to convince you, but to help you understand it.

    There is a physical death that all men endure. Salvation from this death is a free gift because of the atonement of Christ, and is termed Resurrection in most cases (though other terms are used).
    There is the first Spiritual Death, or the First Death. This is simply a separation from God, and thus all men suffer this death, as no man is in the presence of God when they are born. Salvation from this death is also a free gift because of the Atonement of Christ, and is frequently known as Redemption. Because all mankind are redeemed by Christ all will be brought back into the presence of God.
    These two types of Salvation together are what was meant when it is said that Christ conquored death and hell.
    There is a second spiritual death, or second death, that no man will suffer until after this life has past and they are once again brought back into the presence of God. When this occurs those who have commited the unpardonable sin will be cast out with Satan, suffering this second death, or the permanent separation from God. Salvation from this death is also a free gift because of the Atonement, and this is the only way that I personally use the term Salvation on these blogs.

    Now, those who are allowed to remain in the presence of God are also judged according to their works here on Earth. This is said several times in the Bible, and is thus beyond dispute. Thus we must consider what this judgement will be, and what it will mean.
    However, this is as far as I went in what I was saying. My point was that, from what I know of “traditional” Christian theology this is very similar to it. It is not exact, but similar. The real differences are not in this area, but in what we consider to be the judgements passed on those who remain in God’s presence.

  71. shematwater said,

    August 25, 2010 at 1:14 pm

    Just to clarify.
    In my previous post God refers to the Godhead. This is not individuals of the Godhead, but the Godhead as a unit. When we are brought back into the Presence of God (redeemed) it will be the presence of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Those who suffer the Second Death are permanently separated from all three members of the Godhead.

  72. August 26, 2010 at 8:09 pm

    Shem The idea of a single being in three parts is not Biblical. Even your example does nothing to support it

    Me-I do not attempt to understand the mystery of How exactly God is one in e Three I just know this to be true–anything otherwise would be to unmistify God completely and as I or any Christian will tel you that is something we will not attempt to do

    The example I gave is valid; let me provide another example if Christ is a completely seperate entity as the LDS claim Why then did He claim to be God?

    Shem–The Bible teaches that we will be gods

    Shem- I re-read the blog, which is the one I was referencing. I gave an answer to this topic, but I found no reply to my answer. Of course, I did only skim the posts, so please point any out that I missed.

    Me-Does it?
    Why is palms 8 Does the writer say in line 5 “For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.”

    I also ask assuming for a minute that the mormons are right? Does that make men the liars or a liar of the Christ?

    Does this mean the Buddists are right? or satanists?

    What of Romans 1:22-23 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man…”

  73. shematwater said,

    August 28, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    NATHAN

    Christ calls himself God because he is God. He is not the Father, however. God is a title (thus the capitalization). The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost all share this title, but they are three separate beings. Just as all three members of the First Presidency share the title President.

    As to the Bible teaching that we will be gods, I gave a very thurough list of scriptures in my previous post. However, I will address those you gave in the blog you reference now.

    Isa 44:8;
    If you look back to verse 6, as I mentioned in my post on the other blog, two different beings are speaking: the Lord, King of Israel, and the Lord of Hosts. As such, in verse 8 they are simply uniting themselves under the single title of God to declare their authority, not their being.

    Isa 43:10
    Again we have the Title being used. Before him there was no God formed, as no other God will hold that title in regards to us. In verse 11 he calls himself the savior, indicating that he is declaring more specifically that no one else can act as savior for us. (Cross reference with Hosea 13: 4

    Deuteronomy 6:4-5
    This speaks only of Christ. Is is the Lord, as this is a distinguishing title of his. He is only one Lord, as he is only one being. Thus, we are to worship only one Lord.

    Psalm 90:2
    Again, this uses the title. Besides this it does not even say that he is the only God. It is a poor reference to make this point with.

    Alma 11:26-29
    This speaks of the Father, as later in the discussion they start speaking about the son. The Father is the true and living God. At this time he was the only true and living God. The term living refers to having a physical body, and Christ was as yet unborn, which they also discuss later. This does not mean that Christ was not God, only that he was not yet living (same thing is true of the Holy Ghost).

    Mosiah 3:5
    This is only speaking of Christ, and it also does not say he is the only God. It is describing his unique role in the Godhead and mission on Earth.

    Moroni 8:18
    Again, never says there is only one God.

    As to Psalms 8, this is partly Messianic, and partly not. In verse 6 it talks about putting all things under his feet, which is clearly speaking of Christ. However, in a general sense it is speaking of all men, using Christ as perfect example. In verse 5 the word that is rendered “angels” can rightly be rendered “gods.” We, as mortals, are lower than the gods, but we are able to be crowned with the glory of the Father. The greatest example is that of Christ, who had all things under his feet.
    This psalm teaches beautifully the denive potential of man.

    Speaking of Romans 1, Paul is talking about idol worship, which is why he lists “and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things” along with man. To be more specific, he is speaking of the time after the flood when men began to fall away, who knew God (from such men as Noah and his sons) but did not worship him. Paul is not talking about people accept that man can become gods, but about people worship men, or anything else in the mortal world, as it it was a god.

  74. shematwater said,

    August 28, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    Nathan

    I do have a nice essay on the meaning of the word god in the Bible, but it is too long to post, and it is not online. If you can think of another way for me to get it to you (if you want it) I would be happy to send it.


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