03
Apr
12

The Various Stages of Immortality

Chapter 7 of the Teachings of George Albert Smith is entitled “The Immortality of the Soul”.  Instead of focusing on one topic, I’m going to comment on three different things mentioned in that chapter.

First of all, it was somewhat surprising to see Lorenzo Snow’s famous couplet (As man is, God once was, and as God is, man may become) quoted in an official manual copyrighted in 2011.  There has been a trend over the last years for official Mormonism, and many Mormons, to distance themselves from that couplet – especially the part that says that God was once a man.  Fewer things more clearly demonstrate the wide divide between Mormonism and Christianity than their respective views of the origins of God.  Christianity sees him as always existing as God.  It never sees him being anything less than God.  On this most important point of who God is, there is nothing comparable between Mormonism and Christianity.

This chapter also talks about Mormonism’s belief in the pre-existence and the belief that their worthiness there “earned them the privilege of coming to this earth”.  “We believe that our very existence is a reward for our faithfulness before we came here.” (p.70)  What is implied is that many didn’t get that reward, namely Lucifer and 1/3 of the spirit children that followed him.  I bring that up because many times Mormonism talks about how wrong it is to teach that God will send many people to hell. For example, in the Feb. 2012 edition of the Ensign, one of Mormonism’s 12 Apostles, states in regard to what Christianity teaches about people going to hell: “One of the great distortions of the Apostasy was that it cast God the Father’s plan of salvation as overwhelming harsh.” (p.36)

But, as one of my colleagues pointed out to me, according to Mormonism, Heavenly Father banished no less than 1/3 of all his spirit children to outer darkness – after just one act of disobedience on their part!   Doesn’t that fit Mormonism’s own description of being “overwhelming harsh”?  Where was the mercy offered them?  How can Mormonism claim that Heavenly Father will only send a few to outer darkness?  After all, Mormonism says those 1/3 were his very own spirit children.

Another thing this chapter talks about is the purpose for being here on earth.  “We are here to prepare ourselves and develop ourselves and qualify ourselves to be worthy to dwell in the presence of our Heavenly Father.”  This, to me, is the deadliest statement of all.  For it directs people to themselves (note the three “ourselves’).  They are to prepare themselves.  They are to develop themselves.  They are to qualify themselves.  It’s all about them.

But it really is all about Jesus.  It’s all about him paying for all our sins.  It’s all about him keeping all the commandments perfectly for us.  It’s all about him doing everything for us.  It’s all about how he qualified me to be worthy to dwell in Heavenly Father’s presence.  That’s my reason for being on earth.  To trust and glorify him as my Savior – my Savior who did it all for me.  It’s not about us.  It’s all about Jesus.

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119 Responses to “The Various Stages of Immortality”


  1. April 3, 2012 at 9:13 pm

    I just want to say that I really enjoy your posts. They help me to understand what is being taught to my Mormon friends each week so I can hold it in comparison with what I am being taught…thank you!

  2. 2 markcares
    April 3, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Ckuhrasch:
    Thanks for the comment and encouragement.

  3. April 4, 2012 at 12:09 am

    “Another thing this chapter talks about is the purpose for being here on earth. “We are here to prepare ourselves and develop ourselves and qualify ourselves to be worthy to dwell in the presence of our Heavenly Father.” This, to me, is the deadliest statement of all. For it directs people to themselves (note the three “ourselves’). They are to prepare themselves. They are to develop themselves. They are to qualify themselves. It’s all about them.”

    I am worthy to dwell in the presence of our Heavenly Father right now because of the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Praise God I have not fallen for the false teachings of Mormonism.

    It’s passion week. Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe!

  4. 4 TJayT
    April 4, 2012 at 12:39 am

    Interesting post as always Mark. I do have a few places that I disagree with you though.

    On the part about the pre-existence I’ve always understood that it was our faith and acceptance in God and his plan that was the issue, not anything we did. Faith in God has always been and will always continue to be the key. The 1/3 that where cast out didn’t have (or lost there faith in) God. Again, nothing they actually DID meant anything.

    Your point about Mormonism being “all about them” is a good one. Sometimes we Mormons do tend to be to legalistic and works oriented. But you also have to remember that this statement is targeted at those that have already received Christ grace, and so is speaking of the justification we go through as our faith grows.

  5. April 4, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    TJayT

    “But you also have to remember that this statement is targeted at those that have already received Christ grace, and so is speaking of the justification we go through as our faith grows.”

    They only receive grace after they do works –

    “. . . we know that it is by grace that we are saved, AFTER all we can do” 2 Nephi 23-25

  6. 6 TJayT
    April 4, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    Bereandave,

    Taking this scripture out of context is like trying to use James 2: 17 to justify works based salvation. We have to look at other verses in the BoM in order to interpret it correctly. First the whole verse in context.

    2 Nephi 25: 23
    For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, 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.

    The two important things here are 1) reconciling ourselves to God and 2) doing all we can. Here are a few verses that help clarify:

    2 Nephi 10: 24

    Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.

    Alma 24: 11

    And now behold my brethren, since it has been all that we could do, (as we were the most lost of all mankind) to repent of all our sins…which we have committed, and to get God to take them away from our hearts, for it was all we could do to repent sufficiently before God that he would take away our stain.

    So when read in light of these other verses it sounds to me like Nephi was telling us to rectify ourselves to the will of God (or keep the commandments) because it’s through grace that we are saved after all we can do (repent). This points to a very synthetic view of salvation, but not our works saving us.

  7. April 4, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    TJayT said: “On the part about the pre-existence I’ve always understood that it was our faith and acceptance in God and his plan that was the issue, not anything we did. Faith in God has always been and will always continue to be the key. The 1/3 that where cast out didn’t have (or lost there faith in) God. Again, nothing they actually DID meant anything.”

    Mark said: “I bring that up because many times Mormonism talks about how wrong it is to teach that God will send many people to hell. For example, in the Feb. 2012 edition of the Ensign, one of Mormonism’s 12 Apostles, states in regard to what Christianity teaches about people going to hell: “One of the great distortions of the Apostasy was that it cast God the Father’s plan of salvation as overwhelming harsh.” (p.36)

    TJay, if Mormonism teaches that Faith is the key and Christianity teaches that faith is the key, why then are we being condemned for teaching that people without faith go to Hell? Why is it harsh for us to teach that when as you have admitted, that is why the 1/3 were cast out?

  8. 8 markcares
    April 4, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    TJay:
    The problem I have with your explanation of 2 Nephi 25:23 is that it doesn’t jive with how it is explained officially. Just one example. At last October’s General Conference, Elder D. Todd Christofferson, one of the 12 apostles, said: “Second, repentance means striving to change. It would mock the Savior’s suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross for us to expect that He should transform us into angelic beings with no real effort on our part. Rather we seek His grace to complement and reward our most diligent efforts (see 2 Nephi 25:23).” Note how he uses 2 Nephi. Grace complements and rewards our efforts. That sure sounds like grace comes after our efforts.

  9. 9 JBR
    April 4, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    TJayT,

    You remind me of the young man who came to Jesus and claimed that he “did all these things since childhood”… and yet he still asked… “What do I still lack ?”

    Jesus answer was effectivly … you’re close, but close isn’t good enough.

    When Elder D. Todd Christofferson (as Mark points out) emphises that “It would mock the Savior’s suffering ….with no real effort on our part. Rather we seek His grace to complement and reward our most diligent efforts ” completely null and voids faith.

    Unfortunatly … you may not even be aware of this fact, that that is what Mormonism does by emphasizing “after all you can do”

  10. April 4, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Here is another LDS Quote that shows how grace comes after our efforts found under the heading: “The Conditional Atonement”…

    “With this background then, one can understand why the scriptures clearly stress that faith includes works (see James 2:17–26); that is, obedience, commitment, and repentance—these are the works of faith that open up the channels so that the power of the atoning sacrifice of Christ can flow into us, redeem us from sin, and bring us back into the presence of God. Disobedience and wickedness dam those channels. (How literal is the word damnation!) The righteous works in themselves do not save us. The atoning power of God saves us. But our righteous works, activated by our faith in the Savior, are the condition for the operation of that power. Thus, each of us has something to say about whether he will be able to seek the gift and power of the Atonement in his behalf.” (By Gerald N. Lund found under the heading of: The Conditional Atonement)

  11. April 4, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    TJayT

    Thanks for the added passages but they too indicate grace comes after.

    “it sounds to me like Nephi was telling us to rectify ourselves to the will of God (or keep the commandments) because it’s through grace that we are saved after all we can do (repent)”

    I think you have summed up what they say. I would also point you to one other:

    “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” (Moroni 10:32)

    This passage and what you wrote provides a good place to illustrate a critical difference between Mormonism and Christianity. I’ll discuss the major premise – the idea of reconciling yourself to God.

    You can’t rectify yourself to God.

    “16Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” Galatians 2:16

    “23For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” Romans 3:21-23

    Jesus kept the commandments for you by living a perfect life in your place, he took away all your sins by taking upon Himself the punishment for your sins, and was raised from the dead, for you to have eternal life with Hiim and the Heavenly Father by faith in HIs blood shed for you.

    “1Therefore BEING justified by faith, we HAVE peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
    2By whom also we have access BY FAITH INTO HIS GRACE WHEREIN WE STAND, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. . . 8But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9Much more then, BEING NOW justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.” Romans 5:1 -2; 8-10

    Jesus perfects us before the Heavenly Father:

    “10By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
     11And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:  12But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;  13From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
     14For by one offering HE HATH PERFECTED FOR EVER them that are sanctified.  15Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before,  16This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;  17And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.  18Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.” Hebrews 10:10-18

    We can try to do all we can, but it will never be enough. Thankfully, Jesus did it for us.
    We don’t deserve it, and could never earn it. We can never repay, even the smallest portion of the purchase price Jesus paid with His own blood for the carrying the burden of every single sin of the whole world for all time. Jesus, gave, on our behalf, everything He had to give “while we were yet sinners”- How awesome is that!! Thankfully, God’s most precious gift of grace is freely given. We don’t deserve what we have been given, but gifts are not given because the one you give them to deserve it or will pay you back for it. This most precious gift of God was given because He loves us that much. I would never turn away a gift given freely out of love like that, and I certainly wouldn’t dream of trying to repay Him for it. I just humbly and thankfully receive it, and live the rest of my life, appreciating it, treasuring it, and loving Him for doing for me what I could never do for myself, and for giving me a new life in Christ.

    “21I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. Galatians 2:21.”

  12. April 4, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    round and round we go….telling us what we believe and never coming to know the truth. So sad for all of you who follow this weblog’s version of Christianity. I never once read in the Bible our Savior Jesus Christ teaching as you do.

  13. April 4, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    Kate said: “round and round we go….telling us what we believe and never coming to know the truth.”

    Kate, “saved by grace AFTER all we can do” means just what it says. It says saved by grace: “AFTER”

    Did it ever occur to you that your leaders now twist that meaning as a cover up?

  14. 14 JBR
    April 4, 2012 at 11:03 pm

    Echo,
    What Kate happens to fail to realize (giving the benefit of the doubt) is that if she is going to be intellectually honest then she wouldn’t believe much of what Mormonism claims either.

    You won’t find Heavenly Father being an exalted human in the Bible
    You won’t find Heavenly Father having to prove himself worthy in the Bible
    You won’t find getting married in an LDS temple being required for exaltation

    —— I’m sure you could list more ————

    But much to the dismay of the Kate’s in Mormonism, there is in fact found in the Bible the words:
    _____________________________________________________________________________________
    Ephesians 2:8
    For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves:

    Romans 9:31-32
    But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.
    Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law

    ———— (and of course, not to leave out Kate’s favorite)—————–

    Isaiah 64:6
    But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags;

    _______________________________________________________________________________

    Do you need to be reminded Kate of what Isaiah’s revelation meant when God revealed:
    ————— —> “filthy rages” <————————
    You're going to attempt to stand in front with your "filthy rags" ?

  15. 15 JBR
    April 4, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    You’re going to attempt to stand in front of a perfect God with your “filthy rags” ?

  16. April 4, 2012 at 11:25 pm

    Isaiah 64:6
    “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags;”

    Mormons don’t understand that this…

    “saved by grace after all your filthy rags”

    ends up in this….

    Outer Darkness

  17. 17 shematwater
    April 5, 2012 at 6:43 am

    MARK

    While I think TJAY had an interesting point on the pre-existence, let me offer a little more.

    Revelations 12: 7 “And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels”

    From what you stated you seem to be implying this sequence of events.
    1. God declares the plan.
    2. Some people reject it.
    3. God instantly cast them out.

    However, this is not what happened. There was a war in heaven, and few wars are brief. This one was a war of words, or a debate, where God presented his plan, and Satan stood to present a counter plan. It was not a simple, short event. It was a campaign on the part of Satan to attempt to take power away from God, and by the time God got around to casting people out they had had plenty of time to choose sides.
    We do not know the details of that war, but to say it was “after just one act of disobedience on their part” that they were cast out is inaccurate. Just as God will not cast anyone into outer darkness for one act in this life, he would not do so in the previous one. The 1/3 that was cast out was guilty of persistant rebellion, siding with Satan who had sought to claim the power of authority that was rightly the Fathers.

    TO EVERYONE

    It really doesn’t go too well when you try to tell us what we believe. As I mentioned on a previous thread, you may have quotes, but we have understanding. You do not understand the context of these quotes.

    Under the entry for Grace in our Bible Dictionary we read “It is likewise through the grace of the Lord that individuals, through faith in the atonement of Jesus Christ and repentance of their sins, receive strength and assistance to do good works that they otherwise would not be able to maintain if left to their own means. This grace is an enabling power that allows men and women to lay hold on eternal life and exaltation after they have expended their own best efforts.”

    So, Grace comes after faith and repentence, but before works, for it is the power by which these works are made possible. The only difference that I have ever been able to see between the LDS doctrine regarding the relationship between grace, faith, and works and that of other Christian religions is that we lay some responsibility on ourselves to choose to do these works, while most other Christians seem to think that we are compelled to do them if we have faith.

    2 Nephi 25:23 does not place grace after works. It places salvation after works, both of which are made possible through grace. This is the meaning of that verse, and it doesn’t matter how much you want to claim the right to tell us what we believe and what out scriptures mean. Unless you teach this you will be wrong every time.

    JBR

    “completely null and voids faith.”

    No it doesn’t. It validates faith.
    It is like people trapped in a cabin up north in sub-zero weather. They can pray all they want to not freeze to death, but if they don’t built a fire what can they really hope for?
    We pray to God to save us, and then show him we believe he can and will by doing what he has commanded we do.

    Isaiah 64:6
    “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags;”

    One must understand that compared to God we all are as filthy rags. Our best efforts amount to little. But it is far bettter to stand before God with filthy rags, having attempted to cover ourselves, the to appear before him naked, with nothing to cover our bodies.

    “You won’t find Heavenly Father being an exalted human in the Bible
    You won’t find Heavenly Father having to prove himself worthy in the Bible
    You won’t find getting married in an LDS temple being required for exaltation”

    If I am going to be intellectually honest than the first and second points are supported by the Bible, but I have no clue where you got the second, as it isn’t in anything I have ever read.

  18. 18 choosethechrist
    April 5, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    LDS Grace:

    A word that occurs frequently in the New Testament, especially in the writings of Paul. The main idea of the word is divine means of help or strength, given through the bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ.

    It is through the grace of the Lord Jesus, made possible by his atoning sacrifice, that mankind will be raised in immortality, every person receiving his body from the grave in a condition of everlasting life. It is likewise through the grace of the Lord that individuals, through faith in the atonement of Jesus Christ and repentance of their sins, receive strength and assistance to do good works that they otherwise would not be able to maintain if left to their own means. **********This grace is an enabling power that allows men and women to lay hold on eternal life and exaltation after they have expended their own best efforts.*************

    Divine grace is needed by every soul in consequence of the fall of Adam and also because of man’s weaknesses and shortcomings. *******However, grace cannot suffice without total effort on the part of the recipient. Hence the explanation, “It is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” (2 Ne. 25:23).******* It is truly the grace of Jesus Christ that makes salvation possible. ~http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bd/grace?lang=eng

    Biblical Grace

    A Basic Definition—lexical

    The Greek word for grace is caris. Its basic idea is simply “non-meritorious or unearned favor, an unearned gift, a favor or blessings bestowed as a gift, freely and never as merit for work performed.”

    Expanded Definition—theological

    Grace is “that which God does for mankind through His Son, which mankind cannot earn, does not deserve, and will never merit”

    Grace is all that God freely and non-meritoriously does for man and is free to do for man on the basis of Christ’s person and work on the cross. Grace, one might say, is the work of God for man and encompasses everything we receive from God. ~http://bible.org/article/grace-and-peace

    Shem said, “It really doesn’t go too well when you try to tell us what we believe. As I mentioned on a previous thread, you may have quotes, but we have understanding. You do not understand the context of these quotes.”

    and

    “The only difference that I have ever been able to see between the LDS doctrine regarding the relationship between grace, faith, and works and that of other Christian religions is that we lay some responsibility on ourselves to choose to do these works, while most other Christians seem to think that we are compelled to do them if we have faith.”

    We do have an understanding of the context of LDS quotes. Those quotes demonstrate the distinct differences between Mormonism and Christianity and there are HUGE differences. “The only difference” between LDS “grace”, “faith”, and “works” is a BIG difference! LDS “grace” is not Christian grace at all, they are different.

    LDS: We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the (Mormon) Gospel.

    Christian: We must each come to God the same way: (1) as a sinner who recognizes his sinfulness, (2) realizes no human works can result in salvation, and (3) relies totally on Christ alone by faith alone for our salvation.
    ~http://bible.org/article/gods-plan-salvation

    For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23
    For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
    But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
    9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. Romans 10:9-10
    For, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13

    Jesus is more than just my “helper”, he is my SAVIOR which has nothing to do with my “efforts”, because of Jesus I am “exalted” to the “highest” degree of “glory”, no LDS ordinances required.

  19. April 5, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    To Everyone

    Notice how Shem defended Mormonism’s “grace”

    ” . . .It places salvation after works, both of which are made possible through grace.”

    Salvation is only a possibility AFTER works “through grace.” Some “grace.” As much as we have been told we don’t understand and they believe Jesus saved them – their salvation is only a possibility AFTER THEY DO ALL THEY CAN. That’s not God’s grace! What an awful burden to carry when true grace is a free gift from God to all who believe that Jesus did it all for us.

    Shem’s comment also lines up with what Spencer Kimball is quoted as saying in the Book of Mormon Student Handbook:

    “One of the most fallacious doctrines originated by Satan and propounded by man is that man is saved alone by the grace of God; that belief in Jesus Christ alone is all that is needed for salvation.”

    Nothing exposes the pure evil directing the leadership of the LDS church than statements like that! Kimball’s sinister lie and other LDS doctrine that supports it is what frightens Mormons away from hearing the truth and from trusting the Bible which is the ONLY place they will ever get the truth.

    The truth is we ARE saved by Grace Alone and who said that? God did through his true apostles:

    “5Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, by GRACE YE ARE SAVED;” Ephesians 2:5

    “8For by GRACE ARE YE SAVED through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
    9Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

    See the response of the apostles discussed in Acts 15 to the idea that obedience to laws and ordinances are required:

    “5But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.” Their reply was:

    “10Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear? 11But we believe that through the GRACE of the LORD Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they. ” Acts 15:10-11

    The truth is that belief in Jesus Christ alone is all that is needed for salvation.

    “15And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
    16He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” Mark 16:15-16

    Notice here it is unbelief alone that condemns. How many in the LDS church will be like those described in the parable of the sower: “11Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.” Luke 8:11-12. It is God’s Word that teaches that belief in Jesus alone is what is needed for salvation. And it is repeated over and over and over again.

    “30 He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” 31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.”” Acts 16:30-32

    “16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:16-18

  20. 20 Kent
    April 5, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Shem, there was never any other plan except the plan of God’s, Jesus’ plan, for salvation. Lucifer (Satan) never had a salvation plan as he wanted to be a god, which is a lie as he is the father of all lies, and that is how he rebelled and the Bible doesn’t say he ever had a plan, that is just another example of the LDS Church adding something that contradicts the Bible and it is how he lied to trick Adam and Eve to sin and disobey God by eating of the forbidden fruit, which contrary to LDS teachings, has never been a good thing as it brought death and sin into the world.

    Show me, using the Bible alone, where it says Satan ever had a salvation plan.

    Isaiah 14:12-14

    12 “How you are fallen from heaven,
    O Lucifer, son of the morning!
    How you are cut down to the ground,
    You who weakened the nations!
    13 For you have said in your heart:
    ‘I will ascend into heaven,
    I will exalt my throne above the stars of God;
    I will also sit on the mount of the congregation
    On the farthest sides of the north;
    14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds,
    I will be like the Most High.’

    Genesis 3:4-5

    4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

  21. 21 Kent
    April 5, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Isaiah 64:6
    “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags;”

    Shem said, “One must understand that compared to God we all are as filthy rags. Our best efforts amount to little. But it is far bettter to stand before God with filthy rags, having attempted to cover ourselves, the to appear before him naked, with nothing to cover our bodies.”

    But it says in Isaiah 64 that “all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags” so all of our fithy rags really give us nothing to cover us as we stand before God so our best efforts amount to nothing. There is great sadness in my heart that you think that they do.

    But we can stand in front of God clothed in Jesus’ righteousness because our faith in Him is accounted for righteousness so God no longer sees our filthy rags. It is all about Jesus’ righteousness and not about our own righteousness.

    Romans 4:5-6

    5 But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, HIS FAITH IS ACCOUNTED FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, 6 just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works 7 “BLESSED ARE THOSE WHOSE LAWLESS DEEDS ARE FORGIVEN, AND WHOSE SINS ARE COVERED; 8 Blessed is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute sin.”

    Shem said, “One must understand that compared to God we all are as filthy rags. Our best efforts amount to little. But it is far bettter to stand before God with filthy rags, having attempted to cover ourselves, the to appear before him naked, with nothing to cover our bodies.”

    Romans 10:1-4

    1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 FOR THEY BEING IGNORANT OF GOD’S RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND SEEKING TO ESTABLISH THEIR OWN RIGHTEOUSNESS, HAVE NOT SUBMITTED TO THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOd. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

    Shem, by saying our filthy rags account for anything we are attempting to establish our own righteousness so we haven’t submitted to God’s righteousness.

  22. April 5, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    Echo: “Did it ever occur to you that your leaders now twist that meaning as a cover up?”

    Everything I read is with the Spirit. I know exactly what the meaning is. You see, that is what you don’t understand. I seek from God to know all things. I do not shut His mouth as you guys do.

    JBR: “You’re going to attempt to stand in front with your “filthy rags” ?”

    No, JBR. And I love how you all can spew such judgemental garbage at us and say you are Christian. It is very sad and speaks volumes about your “fruits.” In answer to you JBR, I will stand before God in Robes of Light. I hope you spend a little time on your knees asking Heavenly Father why He puts into your mind vile things about us….oh ya, He would not do that, so guess who is really in charge of your thoughts. Think about that. You guys spend so much time telling us that you do not do anything save it be what God’s will is for you to do (so that you don’t get caught up in the whole “works” problem)…but bear false witness against us, use rude comments at us, etc. I promise you, you are being influenced by Satan…not by God.

  23. 23 Kent
    April 5, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Shem, we don’t have to stand before God in our filthy rags, as yes they are as worthless as being naked, as we can put on the garment of righteousness by our faith in Christ as that is what the parable of the wedding is below is about. In our filthy rags we will be thrown out of the wedding of the Lamb of God to His church but all people who put their faith in Chirst alone to save them have eternal life because without the robe of His righteousness they would be thrown out into outer darkness.

    Matthew 22:1-13

    1 And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said: 2 “The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, 3 and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. 4 Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.”’ 5 But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. 6 And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. 7 But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. 8 Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. 9 Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ 10 So those servants went out into the highways and gathered together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.

    11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. 12 So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and[a] cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

  24. 24 JBR
    April 5, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    Shem,
    I appreciate the fact that you’re attempting to rationize away your understanding with the “like people trapped in a cabin up north in sub-zero weather”…. but the truth from the Bible doesn’t support such application.

    The Bible presents things from the perspective of either you are or you aren’t.
    To include “after all you can do” is to include “filthy rags” by default, thus breaking the perfection command.

    You aren’t perfect when there is “after all you can do” … that is offensive to the Host of the wedding banquet when He offers the entire wardrobe for you to wear while you insist on altering it on someway \ shape \ or wearing some accessory piece. Matthew 22:11-13

    Again… it is either you are or you are not.

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    If I am going to be intellectually honest than the first and second points are supported by the Bible, but I have no clue where you got the second, as it isn’t in anything I have ever read.

    my points:
    1) You won’t find Heavenly Father being an exalted human in the Bible
    2) You won’t find Heavenly Father having to prove himself worthy in the Bible
    3) You won’t find getting married in an LDS temple being required for exaltation

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  25. 25 JBR
    April 5, 2012 at 4:57 pm

    Kate…..

    Being that Jesus called other work righteous minded people “snakes, brood of vipors”, “white washed tombs”, thieves and robbers” you’re not phasing me at all.

    You’re parading around boasting about how clean you are, when in fact you’re reveling in your filthy rages. To include “after all you can do” is to include “filthy rags”.. and frankly you’ll be an offensive aroma to a perfect Heavenly Father.

    There is no rob of light awaiting for you.
    Either you are … or …. you are not. Matthew 22:11-13

    No one will be allowed in with the filty rag of Mormonism’s “after all you can do”

  26. April 5, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    Oh wait JBR…boasting? Not even…you are so judgmental! I am cleansed through Jesus Christ’s Atonement. You claim to be the same and yet, you are not boasting?

  27. April 5, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    Kate says: “Everything I read is with the Spirit. I know exactly what the meaning is. You see, that is what you don’t understand. I seek from God to know all things. I do not shut His mouth as you guys do.”

    You say you do not shut the mouth of God and in the very next paragraph you shut the mouth of God…

    Kate said: “JBR: “You’re going to attempt to stand in front with your “filthy rags” ?”No, JBR. And I love how you all can spew such judgmental garbage at us and say you are Christian.”

    The Book of Isaiah states “all our righteous acts are as filthy rags” and you Kate are calling the scriptures “judgmental garbage” and you say YOU are a Christian?

    We take the scriptures seriously when it judges all of our righteous acts as filthy rags. Your righteous acts and my righteous acts are nothing but filthy rags.

    Kate said: “Everything I read is with the Spirit. I know exactly what the meaning is. You see, that is what you don’t understand. I seek from God to know all things.”

    You have a Spirit that teaches you that the scriptures are “judgmental garbage”. That is not the Spirit that comes from God.

  28. April 5, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    “The Book of Isaiah states “all our righteous acts are as filthy rags” and you Kate are calling the scriptures “judgmental garbage” and you say YOU are a Christian? ”

    No…first of all I have not said that about the scriptures. Your lies are to deceive others while reading. Shame on you. Righteous works come from accepting the Atonement and it’s ability to cleanse us and purify us before God. Nothing we can do can get us there without it. Therefore, our righteous acts are as filthy rags, but with the Atonement’s purifying power, those rags are made clean.

    Really, you should do some serious scripture study on this. It is Easter coming up after all…you should try to understand how the Atonement works.

    Also…here is an excerpt from Stephen R. Gibson that might help you to understand this all a bit further.
    “It is true that in Isaiah 64:6, the prophet makes that statement about the righteousness of Israel saying, “We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags.” Let us examine two ideas relative to the meaning of this statement. his followers that their righteousness must exceed the righteousness of the Scribes and Pharisees or they wouldn’t be able to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (Matt. 5:20). In the Sermon on the Mount the Lord tells us that there are degrees of righteousness and a certain degree (more than Scribes and Pharisees) is necessary to get into heaven. Teachings about righteousness are consistent throughout the New Testament. The Lord even tells us to be perfect even as our Father in Heaven is perfect (Matt 5:48). be teaching that we should not do our best to serve our Father in Heaven and follow his Son. If they are indeed teaching this, they are grossly out of harmony with the teachings of Jesus Christ. Many essentially teach that confessing his name and saying “Lord, Lord” will gain them entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven. These are not modem heresies. The Lord, perhaps seeing our day, warned that those who simply confess his name will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but rather “he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 7:21).
    First, our righteousness compared to the righteousness of the Lord is as nothing. As Paul put it, “As it is written, there is none righteous, no not one” (Romans 3:10) and he said that “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Second, we become truly righteous not through our own righteousness, but through the power of Christ’s righteousness. Therefore, to become more like Christ we must partake of the divine nature of Christ (2 Peter 1:4) and his righteousness. Someone once said, “There is a righteousness of men and a righteousness of

    Yet the Lord repeatedly taught that we cannot obtain his grace without our own righteous effort. Our Savior told us to seek “the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all things will be added unto [us]” (Matt. 6:33). He told

    To be righteous is to be right with God. To be right with God comes by accepting both Christ’sGod.” Surely Isaiah was referring to the righteousness of men, which indeed is as filthy rags. grace and by obeying his commandments, following his teachings and doing the will of the Father.

    Those who accuse us of trying to “work our way to heaven” almost seem to teaching that we should not do our best to server our Father in Heaven and follow his Son. If they are indeed teaching this, they are grossly out of harmony with the teachings of Jesus Christ. Many essentially teach that confessing his name and saying “Lord, Lord” will gain them entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven. These are not modern heresies. The Lord, perhaps seeing our day, warned that those who simply confess his name will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but rather “he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 7:21).

    Remember, Christ with outstretched arms did not say “Believe in me.” What he did say was, “Follow me.”

    One of the most vivid examples of how the Lord feels about righteousness is found in Matthew 25. Here the Lord divides the people of the nations into two groups: the sheep, or righteous, on his right hand; and the goats, or unrighteous, on his left. Both groups ask why they were assigned that way, and the Lord answers that the division was made as a result of how they treated the less fortunate—the hungry, naked, thirsty, and sick. The sheep, or the righteous as the scripture calls them, cared for the needy; thus they are blessed of “my father, [and] inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:34).

    The goats, on the other hand, are cursed “into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41). The example is summed up in a way that clearly outlines the value of being righteous and following the example of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ: “And these [the goats] shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal” (Matt. 25:46). Note that the Lord did not make an exception for those who profess a belief in him. A belief in Christ is only of value to those who do the will of the Father.

    Peter also recognized the value of righteousness when he said those in every nation who feared God and “worketh righteousness” would be acceptable to God (Acts 10:35). The Apostle Paul (whom detractors seem to quote ten times for every time they quote the Lord) once counseled, “Let not then your good be evil spoken of: For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost” (Rom. 14:16-17).

    Latter-day Saints everywhere must continue to espouse the fruits of righteous living. We must defend our “good works,” yet we should also acknowledge that we are ultimately saved by the grace of Christ after all we can do. We cannot save ourselves nor work our way into heaven—our works would be as dross were it not for the atonement of Jesus Christ and his redeeming grace.”

  29. 29 JBR
    April 5, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    Kate …
    “Oh wait JBR…boasting? Not even…you are so judgmental! I am cleansed through Jesus Christ’s Atonement. You claim to be the same and yet, you are not boasting?”

    The only thing I boast about is that I have been blessed to see and hear the truth only because of God’s mercy, not because of some righteous thing I may or may not have done.

    I however, use the Bible as like a two edged sword. One side for determining who is speaking falsly and the other from spreading the seed.

    You are misguided on whom is judging you … it is not I but God is through the Bible.

  30. April 5, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    You don’t listen. It’s as if you have hands over your ears and eyes and are yelling “blah blah blah blah” to make sure you don’t hear us right. No need to keep going round and round. We tell you what the Atonement does and you won’t have it. You just continue to accuse us of thinking we are working for that grace. Whatever JBR…it’s you that are misguided.

  31. April 5, 2012 at 7:39 pm

    Kate said: “You just continue to accuse us of thinking we are working for that grace.”

    Kate contradicts herself with a quote she herself gave…

    “Yet the Lord repeatedly taught that we cannot obtain his grace without our own righteous effort.”

    That quote shows that Mormons work(our own righteous effort) in order to obtain grace.

  32. April 5, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    Kate quoted: “One of the most vivid examples of how the Lord feels about righteousness is found in Matthew 25. Here the Lord divides the people of the nations into two groups: the sheep, or righteous, on his right hand; and the goats, or unrighteous, on his left. Both groups ask why they were assigned that way, and the Lord answers that the division was made as a result of how they treated the less fortunate—the hungry, naked, thirsty, and sick. The sheep, or the righteous as the scripture calls them, cared for the needy; thus they are blessed of “my father, [and] inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:34).”

    Because Christians have already received complete and total grace, we aren’t serving ourselves by trying to work for our forgiveness and Eternal life. We serve others, the less fortunate—the hungry, naked, thirsty, and sick. (Sheep)

    Because Mormons have not yet received complete and total grace, they serve themselves doing all that they do for the less fortunate—the hungry, naked, thirsty, and sick, so that they themselves (these Mormons) may recieve grace, forgiveness and eternal life.

  33. April 6, 2012 at 12:29 am

    Another bold lie you try to make others believe. Keep your hands over your ears and eyes Echo…keep repeating the same old tired thing over and over and over again so maybe someone will believe you. Such a shame.

  34. April 6, 2012 at 12:40 am

    Kate

    “Such a shame.”

    If you can’t defend your own written scripture, without abandoning what it expressly states, WHY are you still LDS?

  35. April 6, 2012 at 12:57 am

    Kate,

    Kate, I gave you your words and quotes. You respond with an Ad Hominem and they don’t make your position true.

  36. 36 joshtried
    April 6, 2012 at 2:08 am

    Echo: You posted this…
    The righteous works in themselves do not save us. The atoning power of God saves us. But our righteous works, activated by our faith in the Savior, are the condition for the operation of that power. Thus, each of us has something to say about whether he will be able to seek the gift and power of the Atonement in his behalf.” (By Gerald N. Lund found under the heading of: The Conditional Atonement)
    Yet you still try and report LDS works save them.

  37. 37 joshtried
    April 6, 2012 at 2:33 am

    Kent, you asked Shem this question, and in response, i use the exact same scripture you quoted… Now, i am going to take a bit away from it for highlighting purposes only. I am also going to add some ()’s to pose questions or clarify.

    Show me, using the Bible alone, where it says Satan ever had a salvation plan.

    Isaiah 14:12-14
    You who weakened the nations! (What nations were there to weaken before Adam and Eve? I realize that this scripture is during a much later time period, but the question still applies as there were nations in heaven.)
    13
    For you have said in your heart:
    I will exalt my throne above the stars of God (One part of what LDS “claim” Satan has done)
    I will also sit on the mount of the congregation (Why is he worrying about the congregation? what business does he have with them?)

    As to the leaving earth and entering back into heaven thing.. If you recall in Job, God and Satan were having a discussion, a bet if you will. Satan bet he could get Job to renounce God. God said do anything to him save taking his life. So, to say that Satan could not converse with God is wrong.

  38. 38 shematwater
    April 6, 2012 at 3:12 am

    Let us just get a few things strait.

    James 2: 18 “Therefore wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead and cannot save you?”

    Philippians 2: 12 “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.”

    Acts 10: 35 “But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.”

    Romans 2: 13 “For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.”

    1 John 3: 22 “And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.”

    All of these verses carry the same meaning as 2 Nephi 25: 23. Those who truly have faith receive of the grace of God to enable them to do the works he has commanded. But we still must choose to do the works, and thus we must work out our own salvation. For if we elect to not do the works required our faith is dead and cannot save.

    This is what is meant when we condemn the doctrine of salvation by grace alone, for if it is truly by grace alone than we have free reign to commit all manner of sins and abominations. But when one realizes that true faith always leads to good works, then one realizes that the grace of God will not permit them to remain in sin and still receive of salvation.

    Speaking of the rags, I think people are taking my words a little too literally. Those who literally stand in their filthy rags will receive a like reward. That is why we must seek Christ, that he may cleanse our garments, making them white as snow, so that when we do stand to be judged we are clothed in the light and glory of Christ, and thus receive a like reward.
    However, if we are naked when we seek out Christ what clothes will he cleanse and make white? This is what I meant in saying that it is better to have the rags than nothing.

    Anyone who thinks that we are relying on our own works to save us is wrong, and does not know our doctrine. Works mean very little, for all our righteousness are as filthy rags. We need Christ to make our filthy rags white, that we may be clean and enter God’s kingdom, for no unclean thing can enter therein.
    As I said, the difference is that we claim our filthy rags as ours, though they are cleansed by Christ.

  39. April 6, 2012 at 4:19 am

    Josh said: “Echo: You posted this…
    The righteous works in themselves do not save us. The atoning power of God saves us. But our righteous works, activated by our faith in the Savior, are the condition for the operation of that power. Thus, each of us has something to say about whether he will be able to seek the gift and power of the Atonement in his behalf.” (By Gerald N. Lund found under the heading of: The Conditional Atonement)
    Yet you still try and report LDS works save them.”

    Josh, I read it very carefully. It says: “our righteous works…are the condition for the operation of that power”

  40. April 6, 2012 at 4:21 am

    Shem said: “As I said, the difference is that we claim our filthy rags as ours, though they are cleansed by Christ.”

    How are they cleansed? Can you explain what this means?

  41. April 6, 2012 at 4:27 am

    Shem said: “This is what is meant when we condemn the doctrine of salvation by grace alone, for if it is truly by grace alone than we have free reign to commit all manner of sins and abominations.”

    We believe we are saved by grace alone. Anyone who truly understands what it means to be saved by grace alone no longer desires to commit all manner of sins and abominations. Shem, do you understand what it means to be saved by grace alone?

  42. 42 joshtried
    April 6, 2012 at 5:28 am

    Works was discussed in a whole other thread. This is beating a dead horse, and then some. We have explained it to you as we know it. Lets pull apart one of your past replies:

    Josh, I agree with you when you say that faith without works is dead.
    saved because of grace
    We are saved “through” faith

    Now, according to all of this:
    you must do works for the faith to be faith so that you may be saved through faith (for without works you have no faith to be saved through), by the grace of God.

    All of this is pulled from post 51 on the 2 nephi thread, in the event anyone wishes to go back and read it in its entirety.
    You profess the same thing we do, you just tie a different and convoluted set of words to it to try and mask what you are saying so that it does not sound the same as what we say.

  43. April 6, 2012 at 6:11 am

    Josh said: “You profess the same thing we do, you just tie a different and convoluted set of words to it to try and mask what you are saying so that it does not sound the same as what we say.”

    No. It’s not the same thing you believe but Mormons don’t seem to want to take the time to really understand the difference.

  44. 44 JBR
    April 6, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    Isaiah 14:12-14
    You who weakened the nations! (What nations were there to weaken before Adam and Eve? I realize that this scripture is during a much later time period, but the question still applies as there were nations in heaven.)
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    Ah… Josh,
    That is pure wishful application. Isaiah 14:4 gives the context as to whom Isaiah 14:12-14 is about:

    Isaiah 14:4 ——> “…take up this proverb against the king of Babylon”

  45. 45 JBR
    April 6, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    Kate said:
    “You don’t listen. It’s as if you have hands over your ears and eyes and are yelling “blah blah blah blah” to make sure you don’t hear us right.”

    That’s right Kate…. we’re forcing you to be here.

    Amazing isn’t … the one who throws the accusations is probably the most guilty of it.

  46. 46 joshtried
    April 6, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    Explain to me the difference then please Echo. Is it the order of the words? Is that what you have a problem with? The simple truth is everything in my sentence (you must do works for the faith to be faith so that you may be saved through faith (for without works you have no faith to be saved through), by the grace of God.) must happen. I am not defining what works are, or what works you have to do. I am only saying that according to the Bible “works” must happen.

    Also Echo, you seemed to leave a part out when you posted this last time, why dont you have another read of it:
    But our righteous works, ACTIVATED BY OUR FAITH IN THE SAVIOR.

    JBR, i know the context of it. There is also Revelations that state there was a war (or wars) in heaven (i dont remember which off the top of my head). Either way (war or wars), there had to be someone to fight against (ie Satan vs God). For a more robust explanation of this, please visit the general conference thread. The question posed was “where in the Bible does Satan have a plan of salvation”. In response, I ask what exactly was Satan rebelling against to be cast out of heaven?

  47. 47 shematwater
    April 6, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    ECHO

    “How are they cleansed? Can you explain what this means?”

    We are cleansed by believing in Christ and accepting him as our savior. There is no other way.

    “our righteous works…are the condition for the operation of that power”

    Josh is right in pointing out that you need the rest of this quote to understand it. The problem is that you see the word “works” used in the same sentence as “Grace” and you instantly jump on this as saying it is our works that save us. This is not true.
    As Josh pointed out, the quote clearly teaches that our righteous works, those that open the door for salvation, must be activated by our faith in Christ, and in no other way can they have any effect. We must first believe, and if we believe we must then act on that belief, for without works our faith is dead.
    And remember that all this is made possible because of the grace of God.

    Tying all this together, we do teach that one must be baptized to be cleansed of sin. Why do we teach this? Because without our works our faith is dead, and so without the work of baptism our faith is not sufficient faith for us to be cleansed.
    To put it simply, it is our faith that makes this cleansing possible, but it is our works that prove our faith is sufficient.

  48. 48 JBR
    April 6, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    Josh,
    If you knew the context then… then you’re connecting dots that simply are not there.

    Yes, there was a “war” in heaven. And Mark’s point was that there is contradictions in Mormonism if on the one hand
    …… Lucifer and 1/3 of the spirit children that followed him were sent to outer darkness ……….
    while yet:
    ……… Feb. 2012 edition of the Ensign, one of Mormonism’s 12 Apostles, states in regard to what Christianity teaches about people going to hell: “One of the great distortions of the Apostasy was that it cast God the Father’s plan of salvation as overwhelming harsh.” (p.36)

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    My response to—> ” what exactly was Satan rebelling against to be cast out of heaven?”

    Though only speculative ….Satan probably attempted Doctrine and Covenants 132:20 ……
    his desire to be just like God..

  49. April 6, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    “To put it simply, it is our faith that makes this cleansing possible, but it is our works that prove our faith is sufficient.

    Excellently put Shem.

    JBR: I only come here to correct the lies you guys set forth as Mormon truths. Sorry, but I can’t sit idly by and let such evilness abound. There are too many good people who are really searching for truth and if I can do anything to help them see that you are acting as wolves in sheep’s clothing, I will.

  50. 50 joshtried
    April 6, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    JBR: I quote David now from the other thread. “Satan is the fallen angel who led a rebellion against God”
    Are you trying to say that his rebellion was to be like God? Or was his rebellion to BE God? There is a difference.
    He was already “like” God in a lot of ways. He obviously had a similitude of power, if he was able to lead ANY away from God the father. Therefore, he already was like God in a lot of ways. To “be LIKE” God was already achieved. To “BE” God is all that remains. The rebellion was because he wanted to BE God. You and i are “like” God now. Satan is more like God than either of us. He knows good and evil, he has the power to cause great wonders. And, while im not 100% on this, I dont remember ever reading in the Bible that Satan can die. He will be chained for 1000 years, and let loose for a season. It doesnt say he will be killed. It doesnt say after 6k years he will die of old age. It does not elude to the possibility of Satan dying. Therefore, (again i may be completely wrong on THIS point as i just dont remember right now) Satan knows good and evil, has the power to do great wonders, and is eternal. He is “LIKE” God already. Why would he lead a rebellion to do something that he already had?

  51. April 6, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    Kate said: ” I only come here to correct the lies you guys set forth as Mormon truths. Sorry, but I can’t sit idly by and let such evilness abound. There are too many good people who are really searching for truth and if I can do anything to help them see that you are acting as wolves in sheep’s clothing, I will.”

    Kate, the discussions are alot more complicated than you give credit for. Nobody here has the desire to “lie” about LDS teachings.

  52. April 6, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    Josh, I will respond to you later on, I have no time right now. :)

  53. April 6, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    “Nobody here has the desire to “lie” about LDS teachings.”

    Call it what you will, I see twisting and distorting LDS teachings as lies. We go over and over again in discussion about what we believe and you restate what we believe back to your twisted and distorted version. I call that lying.

  54. April 6, 2012 at 9:38 pm

    Kate said: “Call it what you will, I see twisting and distorting LDS teachings as lies. We go over and over again in discussion about what we believe and you restate what we believe back to your twisted and distorted version. I call that lying.”

    You are like the devil Kate, you go around like a roaring lion looking to devour everyone.

    1 Peter 5:8 “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

    If only you listened a little more instead of continually pulling your fangs out, you would realize that this is much more complex than you think or even realize. Basically you confuse what are my personal opinions of LDS doctrine with what are your personal opinions of LDS doctrine. (because you don’t take the time to listen) My personal opinions are not lies, they are my opinions and I am entitled to them.

  55. April 6, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    Josh said: “Explain to me the difference then please Echo. Is it the order of the words? Is that what you have a problem with?”

    It is not so much your words as words like this…

    “Yet the Lord repeatedly taught that we cannot obtain his grace without our own righteous effort.”

    “saved by grace after all we can do”

    “Conditional Atonement”

    and many other quotes that have “requirements” listed for exalation and even for forgiveness.

    From a **Christian perspective**, all those statements make grace, exaltation, and forgiveness conditional on something we do first.

    Set aside the fact that everyone will rise from the dead because we believe that also. I am not talking about that since we basically agree on that. Grace is so much more than that. This is what I am trying to convey to you. Maybe explain to me what Grace means to you?

  56. April 6, 2012 at 10:19 pm

    Shem said: “ECHO

    “How are they cleansed? Can you explain what this means?”

    We are cleansed by believing in Christ and accepting him as our savior. There is no other way.

    “our righteous works…are the condition for the operation of that power”

    Josh is right in pointing out that you need the rest of this quote to understand it. The problem is that you see the word “works” used in the same sentence as “Grace” and you instantly jump on this as saying it is our works that save us. This is not true.
    As Josh pointed out, the quote clearly teaches that our righteous works, those that open the door for salvation, must be activated by our faith in Christ, and in no other way can they have any effect. We must first believe, and if we believe we must then act on that belief, for without works our faith is dead.
    And remember that all this is made possible because of the grace of God.

    Tying all this together, we do teach that one must be baptized to be cleansed of sin. Why do we teach this? Because without our works our faith is dead, and so without the work of baptism our faith is not sufficient faith for us to be cleansed.
    To put it simply, it is our faith that makes this cleansing possible, but it is our works that prove our faith is sufficient.”

    I still don’t undertand Shem. Can you explain to me more clearly how your works don’t save you? Does forgiveness save you?

  57. 57 joshtried
    April 7, 2012 at 3:42 am

    1Q. Yet the Lord repeatedly taught that we cannot obtain his grace without our own righteous effort
    1A. But our righteous works, activated by our faith in the Savior

    2Q. and many other quotes that have “requirements” listed for exalation and even for forgiveness
    2A. There is a difference in Salvation and in Exaltation. To be exalted is to be “Placed at a high or powerful level; held in high regard.” Christ is exalted above all in heaven save God alone. Something that i am not sure everyone understands is that we will not all receive exactly the same rewards. To be exalted may simply mean that your “mansion” has 10 more square feet than mine.. I do not have the authority to dictate who will and will not be exalted. I do have the authority to tell you BEYOND salvation what one must do to partake of this covenant. If you wish to know, either read the BOM or ask me. Salvation is of course different, and as such, is treated differently.
    As to forgiveness, there are requirements. Most notably, you must ask genuinely for that forgiveness. Now, I recognize that Christ will forgive whom he will, and that is not for us to decide. Here David shows how one should ask… “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart”. Yes something must be done on our part to receive forgiveness. If we did not have to do anything, then every single soul who has ever lived will receive it, and there is no point at all in asking for it now.

    Echo, Grace to me is something I dont have the luxury of toying with. It is not my Grace, it is God’s. He will extend it to whom He will, for whatever reasons. I know that I have been extended His Grace, and i do not intend to drag it through the mud. Grace is something so magnificent that it does do it injustice to put human limitations on it. From “LDS” perspective, God has place certain conditions on everything. One example is returning to Heaven. You and I can both agree that we CANNOT in any way live in heaven without accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior (whether you think our Jesus is the same is not the point, the act of believing is my point here). We MUST believe and accept Him to return to heaven. This makes Heaven conditional. Hell is likewise conditional. Something done on our part (NOT accepting Christ) gets us a ticket straight to hell. Sinning gets us a ticket straight to hell. Any blessing we ask for in our prayers, we must BELIEVE we will receive them. All of these things are conditional.

    Grace means that I WILL and MUST change my life, because anything less that that is spitting in the face of God. I understand that nothing i do on my own is ever good enough, but my “righteous works, activated by my faith in the Savior” help people to see the Grace that God has extend to me. My life is a beacon to others, so that they too may know of Gods Grace. It will never be anything less than that. To try and say that you can do whatever you want with Gods Grace is technically correct, it is so morally wrong. Yes, you can flush his grace down the toilet. Yes you can drag it through a dung heap. You CAN do whatever you want. Do you honestly think that this is how God would have you receive this gift? This is what LDS teaches.. How to PROPERLY receive this Gift. How to share this Gift with others. How to make the world a better place with this gift.

  58. April 7, 2012 at 5:20 am

    Josh,

    I really am not understanding what you mean by grace. What I am understanding is how highly you value it and that you think it is magnificent etc. What I really want to understand is this…What “is” grace to you?

  59. April 8, 2012 at 1:16 am

    I know I am late to this discussion but it seems that the Lds contributors say that they demonstrate faith in Christ by performing works and the Bible-onlys say they demonstrate faith in Christ by relying on His works. But to me the question seems to be “for what purpose are our works performed?”

    If the purpose of our works is for our gain in any way, then the work of Christ was incomplete in gaining us eternal life with God. The glory of these works are then shared between Christ and the individual.

    If the purpose of our works does not enhance our position with God in any way, then the work of Christ IS complete in gaining us eternal life with God. The glory of these works go completely to God.

  60. April 8, 2012 at 2:36 am

    Of course, you are right. The glory goes to God. We do works because of our faith, love, devotion and obedience to Jesus when he said, come follow me and do the things ye see me do. As with the many other scriptures, we are told in Acts 26:20 , “that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.” The word “meet” in the Greek is axios which means “deserving, comparable or suitable-worthy.” I see no conflict here with LDS teachings.

  61. April 8, 2012 at 4:08 am

    Happy Kuh,

    True, whenever there is something we must do, whenever there are requirements, then man does indeed share in the glory because he indeed gets the glory for his meeting the requirements. Certainly the LDS would say that God gets all the glory but from the perspective of the Bible only crowd, those are empty meaningless words in Mormonism.

    Mormonism would say that God gets all the glory for the resurrection of man. Those aren’t empty words there. I agree God would get all the glory for that in Mormonism.
    Mormonism might Say that God gets all the glory for forgiveness, but I disagree there because Mormons have to do something before they can be forgiven. So that is a sharing in glory and even earning the glory.
    Mormons might say that God gets all the glory because God gives them the Spirit and revelation which enables them to do things. But there also, Mormons have to do something before they can receive these things, and they have to do something once they receive these things, so again, man shares in the glory

    In reality (not LDS teaching), God gets all the glory when God does everything and we do nothing. That’s a biblical fact. The moment man does one thing, however small, he indeed gets glory for that one small thing even if God enabled man to do that one small thing. Therefore God would not get all the glory.

    Mormonism is built on a 3 tiered heaven. Everyone enters a certain LEVEL or DEGREE OF GLORY based on what THEY DO. Mormons can’t see how this plainly and clearly shows that man receives a degree of GLORY based on what he, man, does. Mormonism itself uses the very words: “ degrees of Glory” for their 3 tiered heaven! It’s so obvious to me, by their own chosen words, that in Mormonism, man is rewarded a higher level of GLORY dependant on his performance. The LDS Church won’t come out and say that man indeed shares in the glory right here but it is pretty obvious by their own chosen words. This is where the LDS Church mouth’s empty words that God gets all the glory. Honestly, the Mormon Church hangs themselves in this one just by using the term: “degrees of glory”

  62. April 8, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Anything we do to take part in the acquisition of our eternal life with God brings glory to ourselves. “The Bible tells us that true repentance will result in a change of actions (Luke 3:8-14; Acts 3:19). Acts 26:20 declares, “I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.” The full biblical definition of repentance is a change of mind that results in a change of action.

    What, then, is the connection between repentance and salvation? The Book of Acts seems to especially focus on repentance in regards to salvation (Acts 2:38; 3:19; 11:18; 17:30; 20:21; 26:20). To repent, in relation to salvation, is to change your mind in regard to Jesus Christ. In Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost (Acts chapter 2), he concludes with a call for the people to repent (Acts 2:38). Repent from what? Peter is calling the people who rejected Jesus (Acts 2:36) to change their minds about Him, to recognize that He is indeed “Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). Peter is calling the people to change their minds from rejection of Christ as the Messiah to faith in Him as both Messiah and Savior.

    It is crucially important that we understand repentance is not a work we do to earn salvation. No one can repent and come to God unless God pulls that person to Himself (John 6:44). Acts 5:31 and 11:18 indicate that repentance is something God gives—it is only possible because of His grace. No one can repent unless God grants repentance. All of salvation, including repentance and faith, is a result of God drawing us, opening our eyes, and changing our hearts. God’s longsuffering leads us to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), as does His kindness (Romans 2:4).” Always, and especially on Easter weekend…it’s all about God! from Gotquestions.org

  63. 63 choosethechrist
    April 8, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Galatians 3:13
    But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”

    Jesus is more than a helper. He is savior!

    rescued: to free from confinement, danger, or evil : save, deliver: http://www.merriamwebster.com/dictionary/rescue

    All of us are drowning and Christ was sent to rescue us from our spiritual death/separation from God. When we realize we are drowning, we call on Jesus. Jesus does not swim 3/4 of the way to us and then tell to us to swim the rest of the 1/4 of the way. That is not a rescue. Jesus picks us up out of the water all by himself. Jesus did all of the work for our rescue. We do not meet him part way. When we call on Jesus to save us, we get a restored relationship and eternal life with God.

    When you are drowning you don’t want a lifegaurd who stands at the edge of the pool coaching you on how to save yourself. You want a lifegaurd who jumps into the pool and saves you.

  64. April 8, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    There are two kinds of people, two kinds of love…

    1) Those who love others expecting something in return(self serving love)

    2) Those who love others expecting nothing in return. (self-less love)

    Bible-only Christians are in category #2. This is the love that reflects the love God has for each and every one of us. That is to say….God has loved us and expected nothing in return. He has forgiven us and given us eternal life without conditions or requirements(conditions and requirements are by definition: expecting something in return).

    Mathew 5:44-48 “I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

  65. 65 Kent
    April 8, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    Directly below shows that being saved is eternal life. Saved=eternal life=everlasting life so know on this Easter Sunday know that Jesus did not die and rise again on the third day just to give us a chance for eternal life sometime in the distant future but He died and rose again on the third day so that we can know now, this moment, that we have eternal life. Today is the day of salvation!

    John 3:14-16

    14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 THAT WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHOULD NOT PERISH BUT HAVE ETERNAL LIFE. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

    1 John 5:10-13

    10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. 11 AND THIS IS THE TESTIMONY: THAT GOD HAS GIVEN US ETERNAL LIFE, AND THIS LIFE IS IN HIS SON. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 THESE THINGS I HAVE WRITTEN TO YOU WHO BELIEVE IN THE NAME OF THE SON OF GOD, THAT YOU MAY KNOW THAT YOU HAVE ETERNAL LIFE, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

    Once again, I will pass on the gospel I have been given and it is not just the first principles of the gospel as below in 1 Corinthians 15 it says it is the gospel.

    1 Corinthians 15:1-4

    1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

    3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures

  66. 66 joshtried
    April 9, 2012 at 5:11 am

    Echo: you are CLOSE with this:
    DEGREE OF GLORY based on what THEY DO.
    You forgot to add one part, so i will correct it for you
    What they do THROUGH CHRIST.
    Once ANY of us profess to have accepted Christ, we still have our agency to do exactly what he says or not to. He does not force us to do anything. He may STRONGLY CHASTISE (like in the case of Jonah), but he did not teleport Jonah to where he was supposed to be, and take over Jonah’s body and make him speak the words of God. That was still Jonah’s choice.

    A common theme i have seen from the “christian” side of this is to judge how we do our works, or to say that they are OUR works. The works are never ours, but that does not mean that we get to sit on the sidelines… we still must do works THROUGH Christ..

    Choose, you are correct when you say we are all drowning, but your analogy to me does not seem quite right. If i may, i am going to take the liberty of showing you how i view this analogy.

    We are all drowning. In this you are correct. God is allowing us all to drown. But, i see this as more of the Titanic style drowning at the end of the movie. Here, we see Kate (us) and the boat coming back to look for survivors (boat being God). Now, Kate is all but dead. Everyone around her is frozen, the boat doesnt even see her. In this scene, had she not reached the whistle, and was not able to call out in even the slightest bit, the boat (God) would not have come back for her. Now, Kate did not have to swim to the boat. She did not have to do anything but make a sound. It took heart to swim to the whistle, to have the will to live. We to must find our own whistle in this life and blow on it. We dont have to help at all to get pulled up out of the water, but we do have to blow our whistles…
    To me, this is a much clearer depiction of where we are. Even those posts above me state that we must ask for Christ (to quote choose: When we realize we are drowning, we call on Jesus). We have to make that call in order for anything good to start in us. In that sincere moment our lives are changed through Christ. Just as the boat did not pick Kate up and say your fine now until she called them, so does Christ in this same manner. He doesnt make people choose him, they must do that all on their own. AFTER this, everything we do is done through the power/grace/faith in Christ.

  67. 67 joshtried
    April 9, 2012 at 5:39 am

    Also echo, on a side note, i saw your question to what Grace was, and i am 100% certain i posted a response. I dont see it here, and i dont know what happened to it. maybe i posted it to a different thread or something.. anyway, i just wanted to say i am not posting it again. If i didnt post it be some freak accident, well, im still not reposting it :P
    I am sure this will come up again in the future, so maybe ill do it then

  68. 68 shematwater
    April 9, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    Let us discuss glory.

    Proposition: When my son graduates from High School who gets the glory?
    According to Echo it is my son, for he did the work necessary for him to qualify for graduation. Now, I agree with this completely. However, I will add that I will also receive this glory, and the school will recognize that I also receive glory, for every school honors the parents of the graduates.

    Proposition: When I am exalted in Heaven who gets the glory?
    Echo says that is we say anything is required of us we do. Personally, I agree with that. However, I will again add that our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ also get the glory, and I will always recognize that.
    What people like Echo and others of that persuasion will never understand is that us getting glory in no way takes glory from our Father. Glory is not a finite thing with only so much to go around, forcing God to horde it. When we say God gets all the glory we mean exactly this, because whenever we get glory, that glory is also added to God, and thus all the glory that we will ever get God also gets. We do not have a glory separate from God, nor is God’s glory separated from us. For this reason He is not diminished by us getting glory, but is magnified.

    So, just as a father and son are both honored and given glory when the son graduates, so to are we and our Heavenly Father glorified when we choose to act righteously and fulfill the requirements for salvation and exaltation.

    ECHO

    “Can you explain to me more clearly how your works don’t save you?”

    This is why we can say honestly that works do not save you. Because a person can do all the works in the world (including all required ordinances), but if they have not the faith they will be damned. It is as simple as that.
    Of course, if a man has faith but does none of the works than he is also damned, for James has said that faith without works is dead.
    One cannot save without the other, and this is the truth that the Bible teaches. Our works are dead without faith, but our faith is dead without works.
    So, neither faith nor works, by themselves, is capable of saving anyone.
    But even with the two of them combined we are still dead without the grace of God. Just as God gave life to Adam by breathing it into him, so too are we made spiritually alive through his Grace; but only when we have both faith and works, for one cannot live without the other.

    Now, without giving exact quotes, you will read in Mosiah chapter four that it is faith that makes the initial salvation possible. It is in believing only that we receive a forgiveness of sins and are cleansed of all the stains of wickedness. However, we cannot stop there, for it is in faithfulness to commandments, obedience to God’s law that we retain that forgiveness from day to day, so that when we die we are partakers of his presence.

    So, giving a full formula of salvation.
    1. God gives us his grace in simply letting us live and giving us the opportunity to believe, repent, and obey.
    2. We take hold of that grace and believe in God, his Son, the atonement, and all the goodness of God towards man.
    3. We receive a forgiveness of our sins and are washed clean.
    4. We are given additional grace that gives us the power to be obedient.
    5. We use that Grace, obey God’s law, and keep ourselves clean and unspotted.
    6. We are welcomed into the salvation of God.
    (Note that I use salvation in reference to exaltation.)

    Here is a good definition of Grace: a manifestation of favor, especially by a superior (from dictionary.com)
    In terms of God, it is any time that God shows us favor, such as giving us life, preserving our life, giving us comfort, the atonement, and everything else that God has and will do for us simply out of his love for us and his mercy towards us.

  69. 69 choosethechrist
    April 9, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    “Just as the boat did not pick Kate up and say your fine now until she called them, so does Christ in this same manner. He doesnt make people choose him, they must do that all on their own. AFTER this, everything we do is done through the power/grace/faith in Christ.” ~ Josh

    I think Josh’s statements need some clarification.

    Kate is drowning in the water, but Kate saw Jesus and some other people in the water and it looked to Kate like what they were doing might just get her to the boat. Kate followed their example and Kate is now in the process of trying to make her way to the boat. Will she make it to the boat? No one really knows for sure, but there is another group of people in the boat trying to get her to blow her whistle so that Jesus can save her. I sure wish Kate would just blow her whistle!

    I was drowning in the water. I blew my whistle. Jesus lifted me out of the water and rescued me from an icy grave (what an AWESOME savior Jesus is), Jesus put me in the boat. I know for sure I am safe in the boat. I am so thankful for my rescue that I am letting Jesus teach me how to swim with him and I am showing other people how to blow their whistles. PRAISE GOD!

  70. April 9, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    LOL…Kate is not drowning guys. Far from it. Kate is just trying to keep the pirates from taking innocent men and women off the Truth Vessel.

    Echo: “Mormonism might Say that God gets all the glory for forgiveness, but I disagree there because Mormons have to do something before they can be forgiven. So that is a sharing in glory and even earning the glory.”

    You seem to disregard scripture when it proves you wrong.
    Acts 26:20 “…that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.”
    John 17: 22 “And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:”

  71. 71 choosethechrist
    April 9, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    1 Corinthians 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God

  72. 72 shematwater
    April 9, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    1 Corinthians 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God

    Which only proves that the LDS have the truth, for everyone else here seems to think it is foolishness and that we are fools for believing it.

  73. April 9, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    Josh said: “DEGREE OF GLORY based on what THEY DO. You forgot to add one part, so i will correct it for you What they do THROUGH CHRIST.”

    But Josh, from our perspective, even when you do it through Christ, you still get the ‘glory’ for what YOU DO.

    Even from the LDS perspective, the very fact that they call it “degrees of Glory” proves my point that in Mormonism, man gets glory or a degree of glory based on what he does.

    Josh said: “Also echo, on a side note, i saw your question to what Grace was, and i am 100% certain i posted a response. I dont see it here, and i dont know what happened to it. maybe i posted it to a different thread or something..”

    Did you have a link in that post? (If so, it might be held for moderation. Word press does this automatically to avoid spammers.)
    If you didn’t have a link, maybe I can find it, Can you give me an idea of what it said, a line or two so I know what to look for, maybe I can find it.

  74. April 9, 2012 at 4:04 pm

    Echo, in your response to Josh, it again seems that you ignore scripture that proves you wrong. Why is that?

  75. April 9, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Shem said: “Echo says that is we say anything is required of us we do. Personally, I agree with that. However, I will again add that our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ also get the glory, and I will always recognize that.”

    Isaiah 42:8 “I am the LORD; that is my name! I will not give my glory to another…”

  76. April 9, 2012 at 4:36 pm

    Echo: “Mormonism might Say that God gets all the glory for forgiveness, but I disagree there because Mormons have to do something before they can be forgiven. So that is a sharing in glory and even earning the glory.”

    Kate responded: “You seem to disregard scripture when it proves you wrong.
    Acts 26:20 “…that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.”
    John 17: 22 “And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:”

    Where and when do you find assurance and certainty that you have been forgiven? In the LDS book: “The Miracle of Forgiveness”…”It could be weeks, years or centuries”. So for Mormons, certainty of forgiveness is found in the near or not so near future.

    Our answer to that same question of where and when do we find forgiveness and certainty that we have been forgiven?… We find it in Jesus dying on the cross 2000 years ago. It’s finished, It’s done, It’s past.

    Notice in the verse you gave Kate, that the works meet for repentance and repentance itself are distinct. Two different things. That is to say that there is repentance and there is works meet *for* repentance. In Christianity, we were forgiven on the cross(a message that is foolish to those who are perishing 1 Cor 1:18) Since we have been forgiven and we have that certainty, we do works meet for repentance.

  77. April 9, 2012 at 4:49 pm

    Kate said: “John 17: 22 “And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:”

    Kate here is another…

    John 8:50 Jesus said: “I am not seeking glory for myself”

  78. April 9, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    Echo, you don’t understand quotes out of context. It may take someone weeks, years, centuries, because it may take them that long to truly come to Christ with a broken heart and contrite spirit..which is needed to truly have the faith to believe in the Atonement…thus receiving a remission of sins. Saying you believe is not enough…it has to come from the heart…thus it might take some much longer than others to truly be forgiven. Even in your own style of Christianity…I’m sure there are many who must work very hard to get their hearts to truly believe. Just saying the words is not enough…you know that. Many walk around kidding themselves that they believe, when they have not prepared the soil of their hearts to plant a belief in the Atonement to truly take root.

  79. April 9, 2012 at 4:57 pm

    Echo: Kate here is another…

    John 8:50 Jesus said: “I am not seeking glory for myself”

    And your point is???

    Here are some others:

    Proverbs 3:35 “The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools.”
    Psalms 84:11 “For the Lord God is a sun and a shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.”
    I can come up with many more…but don’t have time right now. Echo, try understanding your Isaiah verse in the context of his poetic and symbolic prose.

  80. 80 joshtried
    April 9, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    Echo, my grace thing did have a link. There was one post i tried posting a while back that word press just deleted outright. There are certain links that this site does not allow under any circumstances, and just flat out deletes. I think this may be what happened in this case.

  81. April 9, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Shem

    “Which only proves that the LDS have the truth, for everyone else here seems to think it is foolishness and that we are fools for believing it.”

    It only proves you don’t know what the truth is, because you have been deceived and don’t trust the Bible or God’s abilty to protect His Word and His church. You are trusting in yourself and your own personal ability to perceive God speaking directly to you personally rather than God’s written Word and the saving work of Jesus. You are putting everything on the shifting sand of your own ability ot perceive God’s voice. Shem, whoever you think is affirming your trust in the LDS church is MOST DEFINITELY NOT GOD! You know Satan can disguise himself as an angel of light, but you don’t think he can disquise his voice too? Do you think you are so perceptive, that you can’t be deceived by forces of darkness after your soul? What you can trust is God’s written word given by flawless inspiration to His apostles and to be everlasting truth.

    From your post 111 of General Counsel

    “I use the same evaluation to judge everything. That is does God tell me personally that it is true. If he says something is true than it is true, end of argument. If he says it is false than it is false, end of argument. If he says, as he does on occasion, figure it out for yourself, then I turn to other criterion to evaluate, but always based on what he has already told me to be true or false.
    So, God has declared Joseph Smith to be a prophet. That is true, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else says or argues, as God’s word will always trump theirs.”

    The truth is Jesus did everything already to save you from your sins and give you eternal life with the Heavenly Father. Sadly the other truth is that you don’t believe He did enough. The message of Easter is so much joy and reassurance to a Christian, so powerful and yet so simple: Christ died, Christ lives, WE WIN! Unfortunatley for a Morman it is: Christ died, Christ lives, We Owe HIM A LOT, its not going to be easy, its going to depend on us but we MIGHT win someday.

    Joesph Smith started that lie and that’s what you believe. Tell me Shem, has God told you His BIble was corrupted and not to trust it? Has God told you “yes, there really are other gods, I didn’t really mean what I said in Isaiah?” Has God told you why He decided NOT to protect His Word to spread the good news of the gospel of Jesus for over 1800 years when Jesus’ command to the apostles to spread the goodnews was immediate?

  82. April 9, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    David: “You are trusting in yourself and your own personal ability to perceive God speaking directly to you personally rather than God’s written Word and the saving work of Jesus.”

    I know that was written to Shem, but I would like to respond to this. You keep forgetting that not only do we know we are able to perceive God through personal revelation by the Spirit (which is completely supported by God’s written Word)..but instead of “rather than” as you put it, it is “along with” God’s written Word and the saving work of Jesus as we have shown and proven here over and over. You just don’t want to hear it because it would make you have to think.

  83. April 9, 2012 at 11:59 pm

    Kate, do you own the book: “The Miracle of Forgiveness” By Spencer W Kimball?

  84. April 10, 2012 at 12:01 am

    Josh said: “Echo, my grace thing did have a link. There was one post i tried posting a while back that word press just deleted outright. There are certain links that this site does not allow under any circumstances, and just flat out deletes. I think this may be what happened in this case.”

    Josh, whenever posts are held for moderation, WordPress lets you know this right underneath your post. When you see that message there, Copy/paste what you have written to a word document and save that until either your post gets approved or I ask you to repost it and it gets approved. Let me know that you have a comment awaiting moderation. Mark has given me permission beginning today to approve posts awaiting moderation.

  85. April 10, 2012 at 1:03 am

    Kate,

    Echo said: “Kate here is another… John 8:50 Jesus said: “I am not seeking glory for myself”

    Kate replied: “And your point is???”

    My point is that Mormons seek glory for themselves.

  86. 86 joshtried
    April 10, 2012 at 3:49 am

    The post did not go into moderation. The post was instantly deleted. It has happened once before. There are certain websites that apparaently wordpress itself does not like, or that have been banned in another way. Either way, there is no post awaiting moderation, it is simply gone.

  87. 87 joshtried
    April 10, 2012 at 4:08 am

    Echo, we seek Glory for our Father who art in heaven. Everything we do, we do in the name of Jesus Christ. Every single thing is through Christ for our Father, that his children may in fact return to him, and that even those that dont want to believe may see the power of God. We dont do this stuff here and now because WE want to. We do it because our Father in heaven would have us do it. (ie: works for ourselves vs works through Christ)

  88. April 10, 2012 at 4:26 am

    If you “don’t do works because you want to do them, but because God would have you do them” then you must think He is either going to punish you or withold rewards from you if you don’t do them. If you can’t happily work how does that glorify God?

  89. 89 shematwater
    April 10, 2012 at 5:29 am

    CKUHRASCH

    I think you misunderstand Josh. We do the works because we love God and we love his children. The works are not done to benefit ourselves, and are thus not done because we want them. In other words, they are not what the generally selfish natural man would desire, but are what God wants, and thus what the spiritualoly reborn man would want. (See Romans 7, as this is the same thing that Paul is talking about.)

    DAVID

    You can spew forth accusations all you want. I know the truth. You might as well tell me that the sun did not rise today, or that there was no air to breath. I have more assurance in the gospel of Christ, the true doctrine and church contained within the LDS than I have of either of these things happening.
    You claim that we rely on ourselves, and yet you deny the very power of God and declare that it is better to rely on your own power of understanding the written word than to actually trust in the promises of God and listen to his spirit. You may say that you believe in the Bible, but you have stripped it of any real power to act in your life.
    I am thankful that God is not so weak that he cannot make himself known to us; nor so merciless that he refuses to do so. I am constantly thankful for the promise that he will personally guide the faithful through the inspiration of his spirit, and not leave them dependent on their own meager ability to understand the word he delivered to a different people, a different culture, and a different age. These are the promises God has made, and I have a firm belief in them. The real question is, do you believe in them? Do you believe that if you ask in real faith, nothing waivering, that God will give unto your petition, for he gives to all men liberally? (James 1: 5) Or do you say that you will simply not ask as you do not trust that God can make clear to your mind that it is not Satan talking to you?

    ECHO

    Let us once again go over glory is.

    Kate has done a great job of showing your through the Bible that we will receive glory for what we do. This is truth of eternity, and cannot be changed. The question is not whether we do or not, but how we do. We get glory by doing the will of our Father, and do it for his glory.
    Consider the parable in the talents in Matthew 25: 14-30. All the servants are given responsibility by their lord. Two take the responsibility and magnify it, doubling what they received. When the lord returns and an account is made the two present themselves as stewards of the lord’s goods. They did the work for their lord, and added to the talent that were his. Because they worked for his glory, he made them rulers in his house, and thus gave them glory. The third servant also sought what he thought his lord would want, and in order to preserve what was already had he did nothing. For this he was condemned, for he did not do what his lord expected of him. He was cast out, and the glory that could have been his was given to another.
    There is one major thing that all these servants have in common, and that is all of them knew their lord, and all wanted to please him.
    However, the difference between the first two and the third is that the two took their personal responsibility seriously, and did that which was expected; and when the time of accounts came they stood and declared what they had done. The third tried to preserve what was his lord’s by not taking any responsibility and thus refusing credit for anything.
    We all notice that it is those that take responsibility and credit for fulfilling it that are glorified as rulers.

    Again, nothing we do will ever take glory away from God. However, everytime we bring glory to ourselves we bring it to God. You will note that I say bring glory, because one cannot take glory. It must be given.

    Isaiah 42: 8 God does not give his glory to anyone. This is what Satan tried to do; take God’s glory. We have no desire to take God’s glory. However, God can give us glory without giving us his glory. People make a mistake when they talk of glory as if it is all the same thing. Remember Pauls’s world in 1 Corinthians 15. There is one glory of the sun, another of the moon and another of the stars. There is truly mroe than this, for as one star differeth from another in glory, so too will the glory of eternal beings be.
    God’s glory is the glory of the Father, the Great ruler of Heaven and Head of the Gods. This glory cannot be taken from him, and he will never give it to anyone.
    OUr glory is the glory of the righteous made perfect through the atonement of Christ, exalted in Heaven by the grace of God. This is a very different glory than that of God.

  90. 90 joshtried
    April 11, 2012 at 4:13 am

    ckuhrasch
    The post above was referencing our own works vs the works we attribute to God. I knew it would not be understood so i added the ()’s to try and make that more clear. apparaently, i failed. We dont do works because we want to (add here- get glory for them), we do them because our Father in heaven would have us do them.

    I am very happy in being able to do ANYTHING for God. Every second i am alive is only because he allows it. I recognize that and try to give God thanks in all ways possible.

  91. April 11, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    Here is the difference as I see it. You say you do works because you love God. It seems as though you are saying that you feel grateful for the opportunity, through the atonement, to have the opportunity to do works that seal your salvation. Kimball agrees that your works are key in achieving forgiveness, “Your Heavenly Father has promised forgiveness upon total repentance and meeting all the requirements, but that forgiveness is not granted merely for the asking. There must be works—many works—and an all-out, total surrender, with a great humility and ‘a broken heart and a contrite spirit.’ It depends upon you whether or not you are forgiven, and when. It could he weeks, it could he years, it could be centuries before that happy day when you have the positive assurance that the Lord has forgiven you.”

    Bible believers are already assured of the forgiveness of their sins. Although we know we deserve death and the appropriate penalty, “The first half of Romans 6:23 declares, “For the wages of sin is death…” Eternal death is what we have earned for our sins. God, in His perfect plan, became a human being – Jesus Christ (John 1:1, 14). Jesus died on the cross, taking the penalty that we deserve – death. 2 Corinthians 5:21 teaches us, “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” Jesus died on the cross, taking the punishment that we deserve! As God, Jesus’ death provided forgiveness for the sins of the entire world. 1 John 2:2 proclaims, “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.” Jesus rose from the dead, proclaiming His victory over sin and death (1 Corinthians 15:1-28). Praise God, through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the second half of Romans 6:23 is true, “…but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (gotquestions)

    As a result, Bible believers are truly free to do works because God loves them and has already assured believers of their forgiveness through Christ. Works are not the cause of salvation for believers; works are the evidence of salvation.

  92. April 11, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    CKUHRASCH, In case you really don’t know and I will give you the benefit of the doubt…we are Bible believers. Much has been said already in response to what you just wrote, that others have hashed out. So it really isn’t necessary to do it again. All you guys keep doing is telling us that we do not know what we really believe and that you want to clear that up for us. Silly thing…we DO know what we believe and it’s not the version you guys keep professing.

  93. 93 joshtried
    April 11, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    ckuhrasch: As Kate pointed out this has been vigorously debated, but i will go over a bit of it with you now….

    We know that we are forgiven in the instant we ask, IF we ask sincerely. The point of what Kimball (or whoever says this) is to assure that you REMAIN forgiven. There are things you can do to lose said forgiveness. There is one unforgiveable sin.
    There are numerous references that works are necessary throughout our lives.. Here is one detailing what happens when we stop working…
    1 corinthians 15:18 Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.

    “Works are not the cause of salvation for believers; works are the evidence of salvation.”

    So, those that fell asleep (or stopped working) are okay because it is only evidence that they are already saved? This scripture is not talking to these people?

  94. April 11, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    Shem

    “I am constantly thankful for the promise that he will personally guide the faithful through the inspiration of his spirit, and not leave them dependent on their own meager ability to understand the word he delivered to a different people, a different culture, and a different age. ”

    The BIble is for you and all generations and is not relegatged to ” a different people a different culture and a different age.” “8The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.” Isaiah 40:8. “25But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.” 1 Peter 25 You are always coming up with new reasons not to believe His written Word in the Bible but it is where you will find God’s enduring Word. That’s the thing about something that endures, it has to be around a long time to endure, especially to endure forever. Your LDS new relevations can change tomorrow. That’s not enduring, its not the truth and its not from God.

    His promise was fullfilled in Christ’s suffering and death on the cross for your sins and mine and in faith that He did what he promised through his Son. That is His promise Shem and you find the truth only in the Bible. Jeremiah 31:31-34 and Hebrews 10:10-18. His promise is not your own notion that he has a little voice inside telling you what to believe. As long as you trust in your own ability to follow “personal revelations” and trust your eternity on “revelations” from men and elevate your reasoning over God’s true Word in the BIble you will not know the truth and continue to believe false revelations from false prophets which Jesus and the true apostles in God’s true Word said to avoid. His promise hasn’t changed and has been fullfilled through Christ.

    ” 28Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
    29Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. ” John 6: 28-29.

    This is the works of the Lord. It has nothing to do with following temple rituals, new revelations, doing all you can do, and all the other lies spewed by the LDS church.

    “I know the truth”

    You have been deceived.

  95. April 11, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    Dear Joshtried,

    So you become forgiven by asking and keep forgiveness by working? If your work ensures your forgiveness, how much work must you do to know when it is enough?

    I understand that you feel as though works are important to maintain your salvation, but do you really think that the unforgiveable sin is to stop working? Paul would disagree with you, from Romans 4:4-5, “Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. 5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. ”

    I think also that falling asleep refers to death…if you read the verse you quoted in context, it seems to bear that out, “Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished . 19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. 20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept .”

    Please know that Bible-only-believers recognize the importance of works too…but only as an indicator of our garatitude for the forgiveness we know has been graciously offered to us through Christ…

    not for our benefit-we already have eternal life with God
    and not as a means of bringing focus to ourlseves, but ONLY giving glory to God

    You should rarely hear true Bible-only-believing Christians talking about how THEY want to be better, how THEY are trying harder, how THEY anything!

  96. April 11, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    David, Actually from what you keep saying to us…you do not trust God. You shut His mouth every time. From what you are saying, no one can have sufficient faith to be able to receive revelation by the Spirit from God. At least that is what you are telling us. I believe Christ when he said,

    “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me,

    the works that I do shall he do also;

    and greater works than these shall he do;

    because I go unto my Father.

    And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

    If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

    If ye love me, keep my commandments.

    And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

    Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

  97. 97 joshtried
    April 11, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    Happy, there was a whole discussion on the one unforgivable sin. No, it is not works or lack therein. Blasphemy against the holy ghost is unforgivable.
    While this comment is to happy, this posting is important to everyone. Everyone else knew to which sin I was speaking. This is the same thing that is important to do in the bible, figure out what they Knew and go from there. the same applies to LDS teachings. Just because you think you know what “after all you can do” means, does not mean you have tried to understand. You have simply tried to quote to male things look a certain way.

  98. April 11, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Kate

    “David, Actually from what you keep saying to us…you do not trust God. You shut His mouth every time.”

    Trusting in God’s enduring Word given to all generations is not shutting his mouth. Its believing Him when He says His Word endures forever and is not perishable.

    “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;”

    There is a difference between the comfort and counsel of the Holy Spirit who, BTW, works faith through God’s written Word – the BIble, and believing voices that call you to follow false prophets teaching false gospels that contradict the true gospel found in the Bible. Prophets that lie to you and say you can become like gods, and God was once a man, and that Jesus and Satan were brothers, and that there was a “Great Apostasy” and that the Bible was corrupted. All those are lies and did not come from the Holy Spirit.

  99. April 11, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    Your version of what we believe are the only lies being professed….so who is the false prophet here? We too believe His Word endures forever. Nothing we teach says otherwise. The very fact that you keep saying so, does not make it so. That is something you guys don’t seem to understand. It is childish to continue it over and over as you do. The Holy spirit does not only work through the Bible….and there is no scripture that backs that up.

  100. 100 shematwater
    April 13, 2012 at 3:08 am

    DAVID

    I have a very difficult time stomaching your words when you are constantly attempting to tell me what I believe and what I don’t, and then twisting my words so that you can make them fit your dilusional beliefs about the LDS.

    I believe every word the bible says, but much of it was written in the style, and using the symbolism of a culture that I am not familiar with. It frequently references obscure historical events that I do not have the full details of. While I can take the time to study each symbol and reference, I am grateful that God has not left me with only this, but has promised to give me understanding when I ask for it, so that when I read the Bible I can truly know what he meant.
    You, on the other hand, prefer to keep him silent, claiming your own wisdom sufficient to understand everything that the Bible says, and thus having no need for God to show you his truth personally. You have closed your eyes and ears to the truth of God’s promises, and because of this you will always remain in darkness.

    TO THE REST OF THE THREAD

    If works do nothing for a person then they are not that important. To say that is like telling a person it is important for their health to eat blueberries, but recognizing that they actually have no effect on ones health. (example, not fact)
    Our works are not the cause of salvation, but our salvation is the reason for our works. I have always liked the comparrison to a school. We are all enrolled on scholarship (Grace) but must still perform the needed the work to avoid being expelled and hopefully graduate with honors.
    To give a better illustration I am reminded of a brief seminary video: A poor family wants to send their children to college, so they all agree to put all extra money earned into a jar as a college fund, and send the oldest off when there is enough.
    At one time the younger son comes home with a tip from work, talking about how he is going to save up for a new baseball mit. When his sister reminds him of the jar he is frustrated, but put the tip in because he had agreed to. He then turns to his eldest brother and says “You better get strait “A.”
    Several months later, when there had been enough saved to send the eldest to school the family is at the station to see him off. The younger brother arrives late and hands the jar to the eldest with a few coins in it. The eldest smiles “I thought we emptied this.” His brother then smiles back. “I got a tip today, and I wanted you to have.”
    The eldest goes to college, and at one point he becomes very discouraged. So much so that he begins to pack, preparing to go home. As he goes through his stuff, shoving clothes into a suitcase, he comes across the jar and remembers the sacrifice of his family, and most especially his brother. His struggles seem to diminish and he puts his stuff back and goes to work, knowing that it will make his family proud.
    The movie ends with this quote: “Everytimes things became especially difficult I would take down the jar and remember.” (paraphraised)
    This is what we believe concerning works. Just as the eldest brother needed the work to graduate, so to do we need to do the work required us us. But, if we do it for any other reason than out of love for God and desire to please him, we will never be able to do it.

  101. April 13, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Shem

    “I believe every word the bible says, . . .”

    I’ll use this one as an example of our disagreement over that:

    “8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

    “If works do nothing for a person then they are not that important.”

    I have never said that works are not important. I have said that they are not what saves us and that they play no role in making us righteous before God so that we have eternal life with the Heavenly Father. That is so because through faith alone in Jesus’ perfect life and death in our place and His resurrection we are made perfect in Christ before God and are assured of having eternal life with Him. Jesus makes us righteous through faith in Him alone, not by works. Works, however, are the result of that faith and show that our faith is alive. We were created to do good works AS A RESULT of the faith that has ALREADY saved us. “10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. ” Ephesians 2:10

  102. 102 cindy
    April 13, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Dear Shem, I recognize that you feel as though we Bible-only-believers don’t place enough importance on works, and I’m sorry if that is the way it seems to you. We do believe it is VERY important that our lives are filled with good works so that others are drawn to seek God for themselves.

    You say, “Our works are not the cause of salvation, but our salvation is the reason for our works.”

    However, you follow up with this, “This is what we believe concerning works. Just as the eldest brother needed the work to graduate, so to do we need to do the work required us us. But, if we do it for any other reason than out of love for God and desire to please him, we will never be able to do it.”

    If our salvation is secure, then works are no longer required for salvation, right? And if we do works out of our love for God, then they can’t be required, right? I mean, can you see how this doesn’t make sense to us?

  103. 103 joshtried
    April 13, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    David, you have twisted this so many times and been corrected so many times.

    not of YOUR works alone. This is NOT speaking of YOUR works THROUGH FAITH IN CHRIST. When you have Faith in Christ, you cease to boast of your works. You say “Praise be to God that i was able to do this.” When you do not have faith in Christ, you Boast saying “Here is man that does good things. Who needs God?”

    You say: “they play no role in making us righteous before God so that we have eternal life with the Heavenly Father”
    The Bible says: “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their WORKS.”

    We believe the Bible. Ephesians talks of the works of MAN ALONE. We recognizes this. We also believe we will be judged on our works, either through Christ, or through man alone if you fail to accept Christ, as is written in Revelations. You fail to recognize that you will be judged on your works. Who here is failing to believe the Bible?

    You say that we disagree that works are not what save us. Yet you turn around and say that salvation may be lost by not doing works. And i quote: “Through spiritual laziness, falling into unrepentant sin, turning away from God’s true Word in the Bible, believers could turn aside from the way of salvation and lose all the blessings that Jesus won.”
    The INITIAL saving is GRACE, the continued saving is dependent on us. The MOMENT you turn to Christ you are saved, the MOMENT you turn away, you have lost it.

  104. April 13, 2012 at 4:03 pm

    You see Josh, I think David is spinning around in confusion right now because ultimately he knows we are correct and truthful and he can’t refute it.

  105. 105 joshtried
    April 13, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    Cindy: you asked “If our salvation is secure, then works are no longer required for salvation, right?”

    Do you believe in once saved always saved?

    We believe our salvation is secured by continued faith in Jesus Christ. Once we lose faith in Jesus Christ completely, our salvation is also lost. If “faith without works is dead” then the moment we stop doing the works of the Lord, we have lost faith in him. The moment we have lost faith in him, that same moment we have lost our salvation.

  106. April 13, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    Josh and Kate

    “You see Josh, I think David is spinning around in confusion right now because ultimately he knows we are correct and truthful and he can’t refute it”

    What I have said is nothing new. “Through spiritual laziness, falling into unrepentant sin, turning away from God’s true Word in the Bible, believers could turn aside from the way of salvation and lose all the blessings that Jesus won.” Is not suggesting that works are what save us as you insist. It simply speaks to believers not being led astray by neglect of the Word, (which we need because the Holy Spirit uses the word to strengthen and maintain our faith ) not following lying prophets because they direct us away from God’s Word and falling into unrepentant sin which believers should always be on guard against because they live for Christ as a result of that faith they have that they are saved by grace alone through faith without works. You both are giving the very false impression that I have been touting a once save always save approach and that is not at all the case. You hear what you want to hear and then claim “contradiction”. Let me make this clear yet again. Our WORKs don’t save us, You are content to pick one passage that, in isolation and in appearance only, seems to suggest that the Bible teaches works save us – It does not. You also, to reach that false conclusion completely ingnore the multiple verses whcih clearly state the contrary. Merely, because I recognize that faith RESULTS in works DOES NOT, I REPEAT – DOES NOT mean I ever claimed WORKS SAVED. The quote “according to their works” does not mean works save and the rest of the Bible is wrong – It is simply saying that works show the existence of the FAITH that saved. Tell me Josh and Kate what do these passages tell you about works saving us:

    8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9
    16Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Galatians 2:16
    21I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. Galatians 2:21.

    “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace” Rom. 11:6 KJV.

    28Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Romans 3:28

    You can’t pick one passage and ignore the others which is the consistent pattern I see over and over and over again. I will also point to my post 101 above.

    Before you thow more accusations around about contradictions, tell me why you consistently ignore the passages that say point blank we are not saved by works.

  107. April 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    I have not ignored anything. We have answered many times and you ignore us. We do not claim that our works save us, but are required of us…just as you claimed above…yet you continually return to telling us that we are saying works save us. You are so confused.

  108. April 13, 2012 at 6:48 pm

    Kate

    “after you do all you can do” which is directly opposed to “not by works so that no one can boast.” You deny belief in your own scripture. Repeating a lie doesn’t make it true and “after” means “after.”

  109. April 13, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    No, your interpretation of “after all we can do” is incorrect and though you have been inundated with many corrections to what you keep saying, you refuse to listen.

  110. 110 joshtried
    April 13, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    David, do you believe our relationship to works as I have place them in response to Cindy?
    To both david and kate. I understand this has gotten to a very frustrating point. We should take this opportunity to clarify rather than to attack. I am not saying this applies to only you 2, as I have in ways done this as well. Lets all tey and stay civil and recognize we ask to understand, not to attack.

    To David specifically, it is possible to find a scripture for just about any belief in the Bible. That is why I ask for what specifically you believe. Posting 30 scriptures that all day something a little different does not give your understanding. It shows you trust in the Bible. We (at least I am) are here to discuss understanding. To use sripture to back up your belief is expected. To only quote scripture when asked a yes or no question does not speak to your understanding of that scripture. I can throw the bible at you and say my beliefs are in there. Anyone can. Telling me (or us) your beliefs allow us to come to a greater understanding of you.

  111. April 13, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    Josh

    “David, do you believe our relationship to works as I have place them in response to Cindy?”

    No.

    You told Cindy ” If “faith without works is dead” then the moment we stop doing the works of the Lord, we have lost faith in him.”

    Works do not maintain our faith nor do they serve to acquire or obtain grace. Works gain us nothing in terms of our relationship with God. Works are the result of faith they do not create it and they are not the cause of it. Faith is a gift from God. Which is why I believe all those scriptures I have been quoting to you. As long as faith lives in you works will result from that, but dead faith is when faith dies first, then works from faith stop. Your characterization of stopping works = stopping faith puts the cart before the horse. Doing works doesn’t maintain faith. The Holy Spirit maintains our faith not our works.

    Ephesians 2: 8-10 “8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

    “Telling me (or us) your beliefs allow us to come to a greater understanding of you.” You need a greater understanding of the BIble rather than me. I quote scripture because you need to hear God’s Word and its His Word not mine. I like to just “let the lion out of the cage” and let the Word speak for itself whenever it speaks to a particular topic.

    I believe all of the BIble to be true, so when I quote it, I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it, Of course I can’t pickout every relevent verse, so I pick those I think adequately convey the truth about the issue under discussion.

  112. April 13, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    David: “I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it,”

    You are assuming that your reading or interpretation is the correct one. That is what is the basis of all the debate that happens here. Shem has brought that up before. Your belief influences your interpretation. Our belief influences our interpretation. However, what happens more here is that most of what you quote is never interpreted in the context of the culture and time it was written as well as who was being spoken to and what the circumstances of the beliefs and situation of the people being spoken to were. Just as an example, if Paul was speaking to saints who were already baptized, he would not feel the need to impress upon them the need to be baptized. So the verses surrounding his dissertation may say nothing about baptism and might be used to prove baptism isn’t necessary.

    What is most important for readers here to understand is that if this were really a place for discussion about “this is what I believe, what is your belief, etc.”, then discussion could be pleasant and we could have some very enriching dialogue. At times there has been good dialogue, but the purpose of this weblog discourages it. The purpose is to prove to LDS people that they are being led by the devil. The only way Mark and others can achieve this is by twisting truth and surrounding the truth we comment back with enough non-truths and lies to confuse the reader.

    Thus, in defense, the only thing we can do is to keep posting comments with truth. This makes some of you angry and you lash out by telling us we are lied to and listening to false prophets and even worse than that. If we call you on this, we are suddenly the sinful ones……just sayin….

  113. April 13, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    Dear Josh, First of all thank you for your reminder to us to be civil…I agree that there is nothing to be gained by name calling or continuing to repeat over and over what has already been said.

    That being said, I wanted to ask you about your last post. You said, “We believe our salvation is secured by continued faith in Jesus Christ. Once we lose faith in Jesus Christ completely, our salvation is also lost. If “faith without works is dead” then the moment we stop doing the works of the Lord, we have lost faith in him. The moment we have lost faith in him, that same moment we have lost our salvation.”

    I think I understand that you are saying that once we believe in Christ, we are enabled to do the kind of works that are the works of the Lord…but without faith in Christ we are doing the “filthy rags” works, right?

    Here are the questions that your statement elicits for me:

    Are the kind of work we do an indicator of our faith in Christ?
    Is salvation through Christ the gift of immortality (Joseph Fielding Smith wrote, “Salvation is twofold: General – that which comes to all men irrespective of a belief (in this life) in Christ – and Individual – that which man merits through his own acts through life and by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel,” D. of S., Vol. 1, pg. 134)

    If so, since it is offered to all people does it require faith at all? And then could it really ever be lost through a lack of faith?

  114. April 14, 2012 at 1:45 am

    Kate

    From last post Kate:

    You said David: “I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it,”

    Then you say:

    “You are assuming that your reading or interpretation is the correct one. That is what is the basis of all the debate that happens here.” . . and go on from there . . . .

    But what you don’t include in my comment is what puts the whole remark in context. I prefaced that statement with – “I believe all of the BIble to be true, so when I quote it, – – I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it,-

    I have run into this tactic numerous times myself. I simply post scripture and the attempt is made to divert attention from the fact that the LDS topic at issue contradicts the Bible and suddenly the discussion rapdiy deteriorates to accussations and a phoney debate about my incorrect “interpretation” when I gave no interpretation. I simply let scripture speaks for itself as much as possible because it does apply to these discussions – all of these discussions.

  115. April 14, 2012 at 2:02 am

    Yes, David, but it is your assumption that what we see in that scripture is what you see. You are posting it with the idea that it proves what you are saying is true. Then we show you how we see it, or how it is out of context with what you profess it to be. That is my point. It is not a tactic.

  116. April 14, 2012 at 2:03 am

    And…the LDS topic does not contradict the Bible. That is the whole point I am making. We show you over and over again.

  117. 117 joshtried
    April 14, 2012 at 5:19 am

    David, If, as you say: “Works gain us nothing in terms of our relationship with God.” then why are we judged on our works?

    Happy:
    Q. “I think I understand that you are saying that once we believe in Christ, we are enabled to do the kind of works that are the works of the Lord…but without faith in Christ we are doing the “filthy rags” works, right?”
    A. Yes, without Christ, anything we do is nothing. we are merely alive and in the way.

    Q. Are the kind of work we do an indicator of our faith in Christ?
    A. I am not sure i fully understand this question, but will give it the best answer i can. If we help others, we have faith in Christ. If we call others to repentance (appropriately) we have faith in Christ. If we go out and stab a man in cold blod for no reason, we dont have faith in Christ. The “kind” of work we do is AN indicator of our faith. There are many people in this world that “think” they do good, but do not know Christ. This of course brings us back to your first question & answer. To add just a bit, my indications of faith do not matter to anyone other than the Lord. I can say i do this work because of Christ all day long, and i may be able to fool every person on this site into thinking it is so. Christ knows my heart and my actions, and whether they were truly done through love of him, or to try and make others think i knew him. Christ will judge us on our works, so in this regard, i hope my work shows my true belief in Christ to him.

    Q. Is salvation through Christ the gift of immortality (Joseph Fielding Smith wrote, “Salvation is twofold: General – that which comes to all men irrespective of a belief (in this life) in Christ – and Individual – that which man merits through his own acts through life and by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel,” D. of S., Vol. 1, pg. 134)
    A. Happy, there is a Christian view of “saved” and an LDS view of “saved +”. To Christianity, saved = going to heaven and having eternal life. LDS view:
    General salvation- in Mormon theology, the death of Christ ransoms men from the effects of the fall (Mormon Doctrine, p.62), except for a few sons of perdition who fell with Lucifer. Thus, all mankind will eventually receive general salvation because all men will be resurrected.
    Individual salvation – to obtain individual salvation, the standards set forth by the Mormon church must be met. This comes by grace plus baptism plus works.
    Exaltation – different degrees of exaltation (telestial, terrestrial, celestial)
    A. (continued) As to the specificity of saved = immortality, this is differintiated through definition. To Christianity, saved does = immortality. To LDS, saved = merely resurection (saved from the fall, or saved from death, to be judged as is necessary). To believe in Christ in LDS does grant immortality or “eternal life”, though are clasified more as “exaltation” than “salvation”. In your question above “individual salvation” thus refers to an “exaltation”.

    Q. If so, since it is offered to all people does it require faith at all? And then could it really ever be lost through a lack of faith?
    A. EVERY man woman and child will be resurrected. This is the LDS definition of Salvation (see just above). You will be ressurected regardless of if you believe in Christ, God, or Optimus Prime. (I in no way think of Optimus on the same level… I merely think it helps to stay at least mildly light hearted in some of this conversation).
    “Exaltation” is offered to all people save the sons of perdition, but you must have faith in Jesus Christ to receive it. One may lose “exaltation” through a lack of faith, after you have received it in the first place.

    I know this may be difficult to follow in my specific use of terminology throughout a given thread. I generally attempt to use the “christian” terminology to show how “christians” have errored on a given topic. for instance: “We believe our salvation is secured by continued faith in Jesus Christ.”
    To Christians, they understand this as going to heaven. LDS understand in this instance, i am refering specifically to an “exaltation” or a “degree of glory” or a “level of heaven” or whatever other way this may be describes, because I am LDS and understand the different glories. Part of this is also time spent within this community. For instance, I have not seen you post before this thread, and know not of your denomination. I know Shem to be LDS, and Echo to be Lutheran. As such, my questions to either will be understood in a different light, so i used terminology relevant to each. 99% of the time, i am replying to “christian” people, not LDS.
    The general “Christian” consensus is that there are no different glories of heaven, that heaven is heaven is heaven. I try to speak within this limit. If i were to reword this statement, i may miss my targeted audience, or (and no offence meant) I would be re-describing this each time someone sees a “exalted” statement.

    Happy: Thank you for the questions, and for the opportunity to share with you some of my beliefs. I hope my answers have fully answered your questions. If they have not, or if you have any follow on questions, please feel free to ask.

  118. 118 shematwater
    April 14, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    DAVID

    “I’ll use this one as an example of our disagreement over that”

    As I have said so many times it begins to be painful to repeat it: I do not believe in your interpretation of the Bible.

    Now, you and Kate have hashed this over a lot, but I would like to point out what I would consider the biggest flaw in all your posts.
    Kate does point out your assumption that you are right, as well as the assumption that everyone sees exactly what you see in the Bible.
    I would add to this your assumption that nopthing else can be seen in the bible, and so if anyone disagrees with what you say they obviously don’t believe what the Bible says.

    All three of these assumoptions make discussion with you nearly impossible. So, when you make the comment “I believe all of the BIble to be true, so when I quote it, I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it, Of course I can’t pickout every relevent verse, so I pick those I think adequately convey the truth about the issue under discussion.” What it comes across as is this.

    “I believe what I see in the BIble to be true, and that you see the same thing, so when I quote it, I am telling you what I believe and what the Bible has to say about it, Of course I can’t pickout every relevent verse, so I pick those I think adequately convey my interpretation about the issue under discussion, knowing that you will fully understand what that interpretation is, and that it is the truth.”

    You are not always right (neither am I). Not everyone sees exactly the same thing as you when they read the Bible. It is possible to interpret the Bible in a different way than how you choose to interpret, and so we can believe in the Bible and yet not believe a word you are personally saying.

    CINDY

    “If our salvation is secure, then works are no longer required for salvation, right?”

    Read my post again. OUr salvation is not secure by merely believing and the grace of God. Just as a person who gets into school on scholarship is not secure in his enrollment on this alone.
    We have salvation because we have faith, and because of the Grace of God, but that salvation is made secure by our continual striving to live as God has commanded.
    Also, read again the summary of the video. If we do not do the work out of love for the one that made it all possible it will overwhelm us and we will become discouraged and eventually fall. God makes everything possible through his Grace, and if we accept that Grace in love and strive to please him because of that great gift all works will not only be possible, but will truly become easy and a delight to do.

    “And if we do works out of our love for God, then they can’t be required, right? I mean, can you see how this doesn’t make sense to us?”

    Honestly, no. I have never understood this, and I never will. Why is it that one cannot be motivated by love to do that which is required? What makes these things impossible to put together?
    Think of the story in the post; or better yet, compare this to your life. I will do so with mine. I am graduating this may. I will have received my first bachelors degree. Now, there were certain requirements that I had to meet in order to receive this honor, and if I did not do them I would not be graduating. There was time when I did slack off, didn’t do what I should, and so I had to retake a few classes.
    However, I can honestly say that my motivation had nothing to do with getting the degree for my own benefit. I wanted the degree because I knew that it would make my family proud of me and make them happy. I know my father likes to tell people how many of his children have accomplished certain things in their life; such as temple marriage, a mission, and graduating from college. I wanted to make it possible for him to say that one more of his children had graduated.

    So, when I consider eternity and salvation, I know that there are certain things that are required to gain the highest glory, and though I slack off at times and am forced to redo things on occassion, I still strive to fulfill those requriements. Not because it is my salvation that I am seeking, but because I love my Father and I want to hear him bragging that another one of his children made it.

    JOSH and HAPPY

    I love the dialogue, and Josh has done a great job of explaining things. However, not to be mean or anything, I think he has blended common Christian terms with the LDS terms in his explanation, which made it a little confusing for me. I understand he is trying to use the Christian terms, and I think that caused the confusion.
    So, I would like to jsut clarify a little in terms of LDS terminology.

    Immortality is the uniting of the body and Spirit after resurrection, never again to be separated. This will be granted to all men, regardless of faith.
    Salvation, in its most basic sense is simply the rescuing of a person from an undesirable effect. That all those who are resurrected receive salvation from physical death. All those who are brought into Heaven receive salvation from Hell. The ultimate and most complete salvation is a salvation from a stagnant existance.
    Exaltation is inheritting all that is the Fathers, and is the most complete form of salvation.
    Eternal Life is synonymous with Exaltation.

    I give this to clarify the definitions of these terms according to the LDS. Josh did explain the doctrine very well, but his use oft he terms was a little confusing.

  119. April 20, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Sorry for my delayed response…things have gotten busy and quite honestly, I am overwhelmed by the convolution of terms and descriptions of the gospel in this way. It is such a far cry from the “the simplicity that is in Christ” 2 Corinthians 11:3 that is the basis of my belief.


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