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I Am Doubting God Exists
  
I asked my stepfather one day about this and he gave me this simple thought.He ask me a simple question who was George Washington? I answered everyone knows who he was the first president. He ask me how did I know that and I explained that I had learned that in history class.He ask if I was taught that out of a history book and I said yes. He then ask me this.Did you ever see George Washington? I said well no I had not.But you believe what the history books say right? I said well yes. So he said let me get this straight you believe in a man you have never seen never spoke to and have only heard about him from a teacher out of a man made book right? I replied yes,then why do you not believe in God it takes faith to believe. 2 Corinthians 5:7


Call A Priest Father
  
Regarding what the Bible says in Matthew 23:8-12: There's a whole lot of juggling going on here, in an attempt to validate doing something the Bible says not to. I've been a pastor for 30 years, and have people call me by my first name. Why wouldn't we err on the side of scripture, rather than push an agenda that appears to be a violation? Doesn't 1Thess say, "avoid all appearance of evil"? I would rather be in error while attempting to obey scripture, than stretch or bend it to accommodate an agenda.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,
I'm not sure we are disagreeing on this last point. Mormons would agree that while the body is in the grave awaiting resurrection, that it is dead. It is the spirits of the dead that Christ preached to, not their bodies. And why would they be preached to if they cannot accept Christ at that point? And if all must be baptized to be saved (Mark 16:16) and if God's laws are just and merciful, then either these dead are baptized after their bodies are resurrected, or as mormons and Paul believed, the living could be baptized for the dead. Even if you don't believe in Mormonism or Joseph Smith, I think a true seeker after truth would have to admit that the teachings of Paul and Peter and mormonism are compatible on this point.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Steveng,

The problem is that 1 Peter 4 specifically has the dead being preached to and if the dead basically know nothing and can do nothing, then why would they be preached to. Mormons believe that those who die without knowing Christ can be preached to by Christ and those believers that have also passed on. And, if they choose to accept Christ's gospel, that they can receive the blessings of the gospel. This makes sense to me. It seems to follow the bibles teachings on the necessity of baptism (Mark 16:16) and also shows God is a just God that follows his own rules, but that also has made plans of great and loving mercy to allow all to be partakers of Christ's great gift.


Friend Becoming A Mormon
  
Mormons do believe that Christ is the creator and regularly quote Hebrews 1 to prove this. Perhaps you are referring to the fact that Mormons do not believe in the concept of "ex nihilo" creation. Mormons believe the Genesis account is talking to about organizing "chaos" (unorganized materials), not creating from nothing. I think if you look at the creation accounts, it is apparent that the Mormon interpretation is most in line with the bible's own words. Some may look at the few scriptures that talk of God creating all things, but Mormons would say that "things" are specific objects (like planets, rocks, trees, animals, people, etc.) not chaotic matter. I think that biblically the concept is debatable.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,
1. Paul stated that Baptism for the Dead was proof of the validity of the doctrine of the resurrection.
2. Paul knew you couldn't use a false doctrine to prove a true one.
3. Therefore, Paul was teaching that Baptism for the Dead is a true doctrine.
4. Christ taught that baptism is essential for salvation (Mark 16:16) and did not exempt anyone (living or dead).
5. Baptisms for the dead are necessary for there to be justice, because many did not have the opportunity to hear and accept Christ's gospel while they lived.
6. The gospel is preached to the dead so that they may be judged just like the living (1 Peter 4).
7. God is loving and just and this is why He allows for Baptisms for the Dead (which are biblical).


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,
The bible clearly teaches the need for baptism. Christ said: "He that believeth AND IS BAPTIZED shall be saved" Mark 16:16. This verse is in the last paragraph of teachings that Christ gave to his apostles. If I were leaving those I loved and had intrusted them with an important work, my last words would be chosen for their importance. Also, it is interesting that about the first teachings of Peter after Christ's ascension is Acts 2:38- "...Repent AND BE BAPTIZED EVERYONE OF YOU IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST FOR THE REMISION OF SINS...". Peter understood that baptism was essential. He didn't just say, "glad you accepted our message of Christ, don't worry about baptism".


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,
Read 1 Peter 3:18-21 and 1 Peter 4:6. Peter teaches: Christ went to "spirits in prison". Who were these spirits? They were disobedient people from the OT times. Peter refers to the baptism of the earth in Noah's day and then says in like manner, baptism now saves us. Peter then says in chapter 4 that the gospel was preached to the dead (probably no need to preach to believers since they already believe). Why was it preached? So they could be judged like men in the flesh. What is one of the requirements for salvation of "men in the flesh". Baptism (see Mark 16:16). Interesting to note that the Book of Mark is regarded by many as the Gospel of Peter because Mark seems to have worked directly with Peter.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,

Are you sure you want to hold to the "only taught once, so it doesn't count" doctrine. I know if we took out all the stories and doctrines that are only taught once in the bible, we wouldn't have much left. The "in the mouth of two or more" doctrine may apply here, if so, we all need to look at a lot of our beliefs, because most biblical stories are only told once, most prophecies only given once and many doctrines only taught once. Maybe we aren't required by God to believe on just one witness, but when the witness is an apostle or prophet of God, it might be wise to still err on the side of following what they say till some other messanger from God says differently.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie,
Mormons do believe in baptism for the dead. As noted earlier, Paul does talk about it. However, you mistakenly said that Paul did not teach it. You apparently missed that Paul used it to prove that the doctrine of resurrection is correct. Paul was very well educated and would have known that you can't use a false doctrine to prove a true one, so in essence, his logical proof is based on the foundation of baptism for the dead. Obviously if his foundation is not solid, his proof is invalid. Either Paul is stupid and being illogical or he is showing his belief in the doctrine of baptisms for the dead.


Mormon Temples Rituals
  
Laurie, much that you say about Mormons is misrepresenting our practices and beliefs. Please stick to actual differences and cocerns, not made up ones.

To set things straight: In our temples we promise to follow God's teachings and to keep sacred things sacred. If this makes me a sinner, I guess so are those who take marital vows to be faithful to their spouse. There is no violent mormon temple oath to harm others who disobey, nor do mormons ever harm others because of their beliefs. We believe in complete freedom of religion. Temple "garments" are to remind us of our commitment to God - much like "WWJD" bracelets, except that garments are less for show, since they are warn under regular clothing.


Are Some Sins Worse
  
All sin makes us a sinner. But, not all sins are equal. In the OT, where the law was given by God to Moses, there were varied punishments based on the gravity of the offense. Murder is not on the same level as forgetting a friends birthday.


Friend Becoming A Mormon
  
Laurie,
Few other christian churches have mormon literature in them, but this is beside the point. You don't find catholic catachisms in non-catholic churches, nor Luther's works in Catholic churches. You are also somewhat incorrect at least in emphasis, when you claim that Mormons are "works based". The gospel we believe in and the church we belong to are based on Christ and His teachings. We may feel that being good is important to God, but we are under no illusion as to whom is our Savior. Christ taught the importance of goodness over and over and over again. In large part, that was one of the great themes of his ministry "to love one another".


Are Catholics Christians
  
Jo,

Amen and Amen.


Friend Becoming A Mormon
  
Mormons believe in the biblical Christ and believe our concepts about Christ are well substantiated in the Bible. I don't ask anyone to believe me, because they don't know me. What I do ask is that they slowly and carefully read the Gospels, starting with Matthew. Note each passage that deals with the relationship between Christ and God the Father. Make a column for those scriptures which show that the two are separate beings with different locations, roles, knowledge, wills, or etc. Make a column for those that show that Christ and God are literally one entity with no difference in will, location, knowledge or roles, etc. Then after seeing what the Bible actually says about Jesus, then make a determination rather than be prejudicial.


Death Penalty Biblical Today
  
Reading through these blogs, I tend to agree with Chris here. And by the way Manny, you seem to have purposely left off the important part of Chris' statement in order to make him look mean, when it seems he was being correct. All he said was that the more harsh the punishment, the better that punishment is as a deterent. Sounds like common sense to me. I know I would be a lot less likely to do something if there was a death penalty, than if I was to be whipped with a wet noodle. As to being asked not to judge others, Chris' interpretation is the only logical one that I can see, because life is full of choices. The bible even says "choose you this day", but choices are meaningless without judging what/who is good and bad.


Friend Becoming A Mormon
  
I am a Mormon. I consider myself a Christian (though I have my faults). I understand many of your concerns, because I too would be concerned if I had a friend that was considering joining another church. I think that the doctrines taught in my church are true and if a friend were thinking of going away from these truths, I would be sad and concerned, but I hope I would still love him, remain friends with him and pray for him. Though we may not see all things eye to eye, I believe Christ taught in his parables of the prodigal son and the lost sheep, that we do not disown or hate those who stray, but hope for their return, work towards it and lovingly accept them when they do.


Are Mary Appariations Demons
  
Many lies are documented by man. Mary can no longer help one person on this earth. When I was a Catholic, everything looked and sounded so holy in church, but it was mostly a smoke screen. Many are decieved by appearances, instead of the truth. Jesus is the ONLY door.


Church Furniture Grows Church
  
We go to church to hear a word from the Lord and to fellowship with other believers. If the concern is on whta furniture may or may not be there, you may be going for the wrong reason.



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