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Found 17 results

  1. I have been contemplating the question of "what is a Christian" for awhile and have had some meaningful discussions with my now missionary daughter. She has had many such conversations with others as well. It has been interesting but I have found that there is no well articulated meaning. It changes to make one's point. I did a search on this subject in the forums here and found PrisonChaplain had just posted "What do Christians Believe?" and it was an interesting read and I was led further afield. I read on the web a statement by Matt Slick who said this, "Christianity isn't about rules and regulations to follow. It is about a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ." This statement has stayed in my mind because it has been an anchoring point in the last year for me. The thing is, the more I think about it the more I ask, what do you mean when you say "a personal relationship with Christ?" I have not found any past op that has touched this subject so I'm asking for your thoughts. Definitions, experiences or what have you... I chose general beliefs because I'm not directing it to LDS specifically.
  2. This thread is about @prisonchaplain and a spin off of other anther thread. He asked: Now, I know not everyone has a particularly special moment when it "clicked" with you that Christ is your Savior, but if you'd do, I think this would be a great place to share those stories!
  3. I've reached a conclusion that I don't like based on the revelations. I've always liked the idea of being the literal offspring of God the Father, but now I'm not so sure. My question is if there's anything wrong with my conclusion. First, some statements of fact. Fact #1: God was once a man on an earth. Joseph Smith confirmed this in the King Follet sermon. Fact #2: Exalted couples continue to have offspring in eternity. (D&C 132:19, also in the teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, trust me it's in there) Fact #3: Joseph Smith basically confirmed that God the Father is himself a Christ in the sermon in the Grove. I am merely saying it's a fact that Joseph Smith said it, not that God actually is a Christ (though I think he is.) Fact #4: God the Father, Jesus Christ, and man are all the same race of being. I.e. God is not different in kind from us. After all, he did say "Man of Holiness is my name." Now for some assumptions based on the revelations and logic which flows from them. Assumption #1: there's an infinite progression and regression of gods. (eg. Heavenly grandpa, Go as far back as you want) Assumption #2: God the Father's mortal life was that of a Christ. He lived without sin and was divine. Assumption #3: God cannot give the pains of atonement to Jesus unless he himself has experienced an atonement. I assume this for two reasons. Reason #1: omniscience wouldn't cut it, "now the spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the son of God suffer at the cording to the flash that he might take upon him the sins of his people" Alma 7:13, which could potentially mean that God the Father would have needed to know these things by experience in order to cause Christ's suffering in Gethsemane. Reason #2: All things being equal between God and Jesus as far as degree is concerned. Christ having experienced the atonement would logically make him greater than God, having more intelligence by virtue of his experience as Christ. And that doesn't sound right. Assumption #4: by reason of assumption #3, we can conclude one thing: that only a Christ can bring forth a Christ. Or in other words, a man who has not been a Christ does not have the intelligence required for such an endeavor. Now for the progression of logical steps which lead to the conclusion. Step #1: Exalted persons have spirit children, not children in the flesh. (being born in the flesh in the presence of God would be a state of damnation, like that of the garden of Eden) Step #2: Said spirit children cannot have a fullness of joy and cannot be gods themselves, unless they have bodies. Step #3: Said spirit children will therefore require a Plan of Salvation. Step #4: Said Plan of Salvation requires a Christ. Step #5: Problem; none of these perfected, exalted persons are capable of bringing forth a Christ, because an atonement for said Christ requires more intelligence than they possess. Step #6: Solution; Jesus Christ, Our lord, presents a Plan of Salvation, and brings forth his Christ. Which would make Jesus Christ the God of the children of the exalted of this Earth. CONCLUSION: Therefore, God the father is not the literal father of our spirits, but the redeemer of our parents in the spirit. Now, some contradictions. Jesus Christ is said to be the firstborn in the spirit, this first born status is relative. Meaning God had other children. Also, Joseph F Smith and his counselors declared that we are God's offspring. Another thing I'm not sure about is how a Christ atones for intelligences which are not yet born in the spirit but are later born in the spirit to parents who's earlier children have already been redeemed. This system of mine implies some kind of eternal progression of messiahs, and I have no idea how this really works. This entire conclusion rides on the idea that God needs to have experienced an atonement in order to give an atonement. (But then there's still the issue of Christ being "greater" than God) So if you would be so kind as to poke holes in my conclusion, I would be most grateful. Cheers
  4. How do you forgive the unrepentant? Or even the repentant? How do we love the unlovable, reach the unreachable, or seemingly do the impossible of forgiveness? These are questions we each struggle with. On some level we feel that if we forgive a person, then the judge and the jury all go home with all charges dropped. We feel that obligated to plant our feet on the witness stand and point our angry fingers—and that if we don’t, the guilty unrepentant perpetrator will just “get away with it”. But that’s not how forgiveness and repentance work at all. It is impossible for us humans to absolve sin. We cannot choose to drop the charges and let the perpetrator go free. No, only Christ can absolve sins. Whether or not a perpetrator goes free has nothing to do with whether or not we stand up and point the angry finger. Our witness statement of their crimes has already been given, because Christ knows everything about us and feels every blow wrecked upon us. Christ is the one who plants His feet at the witness stand for us, and with perfect knowledge bears testimony of the pain—the pain both you and He feels. We are not obligated to angrily do what Christ is already doing for us. Christ offers us so much. He takes the burden of the witness stand from us. He gives of the assurance the guilty will have a perfect trial, and that we don’t have to judge a person’s heart ourselves. We don’t have to: He’s got us covered. What He offers us is Healing: the taking away of our pain, mending our broken bones by replacing ours with His. Christ allows us to become stronger through His strength. But He will not force us in any way: we must choose to accept His gifts, including the Gift of Healing. That’s why Christ commands us to forgive: to let go of our angry broken bones so that we may receive His whole ones in exchange. That’s why we forgive: to become whole again through Christ’s power. We don’t forgive to decide whether or not a person has to pay a price for their actions—that’s Christ’s job. We don’t forgive because a person because of the status of their repentance—again, that’s Christ’s job to judge, not ours. We forgive because Christ asked us to accept His Wholeness for our brokenness.
  5. ncrckr

    LDS Temple Artwork

    I would like to know if anyone can help me identify the title and artist of this painting. It is found in the entrance of the El Salvador San Salvador Temple.
  6. Do you all remember Stephen E. Robertson? In 1992, he wrote the book Believing Christ and wrote an article in the Ensign on the same topic asking the question “Do we Believe in Christ without believing Christ?” When I first heard it I rolled my eyes, “Ok. Another person came up with a cute play on words, and now people are running with it as if it renews their spirits somehow.” Yes, I’m a cynic... Recently, I’ve had cause to reflect on this question. My pointed questions are: Do we really believe the Lord runs this Church and not man? Do we really believe that the Atonement can bless us in this life, not just the next? Do we really believe continuing revelation occurs on a regular basis in the Church? Do we really believe the Church is founded on revelation and not on avoidance of liability? Do we really believe the power of the Priesthood is active in our blessings? Do we really believe that we have the Hosts of Heaven at our backs? I personally have had many faith promoting events in my life that would tell me YES to all these. But many active saints in my life seem to be resistant to the notion. I’ve been healed by blessings. I’ve received ministering of angels. I’ve heard an actual Voice speak to me. One Ex-Mormon friend who now attends another Christian Church was visibly, physically, shaken by it and had to remark, “Well, that’s just freaky!” The list goes on… While many have believed my testimony, I’m concerned about so many who utterly refuse to believe. It’s not my job to convince them, nor do I try. Yet, it is disturbing to know how many say they “believe in” but they don’t really “believe”. It seems that many are willing to believe in things if they can also be attributed to chance or other mundane explanations. But if it is inexplicable (truly miraculous) they don’t know how to process it. FAITH PROMOTING STORY As ward mission leader years ago, I met with the stake mission president. He told me his conversion story. Just before he was to be baptized, he had a business assignment that allowed him to meet with Pres. McKay. They started talking about some gospel questions for a few minutes. You don’t pass up a chance like that! In that private conversation he asked Pr. McKay, “Tell me. Have you ever personally, physically spoken with the Lord as one man speaks with another?” Pres. McKay gave a little chuckle, “Of course.” Then pointing to the very room they were sitting in and the conversation they were having with chairs pushing the two of them close together he said, “We have had many interviews since I was called to this office.” So, am I alone in experiencing the miracles that are as clear and plain as day? I believe that as Latter-Day Saints we need to be close to the Powers of Heaven. I believe that as Latter-Day Saints we need to be a people who believe that miracles can be familiar to us. Am I alone in this?
  7. Guest

    Christ-Centered Life

    What do you do to keep a Christ-Centered mentality? I've been pondering the principle that we are to center our lives on Jesus Christ. The word "center" clearly led me to the theologic concentric circles (Core, Dogma, Doctrines, Beliefs). I would also add another circle -- "practices". The GAs have clearly defined what is "core": “The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it.” (Teachings of the Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith) Other quotes also include that he was the Only Begotten of the Father, was born of a virgin, that he lived a perfect life, and performed the atonement. Nephi describes our dependence on Christ as: ...the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost... (2 Ne 31:21). It seems that we spend a lot of time on a forum such as this spinning out into the outer circles. We debate doctrines, beliefs, and practices. We've even debated some dogma. Obviously, we don't debate the core. I think everyone's pretty clear on that. Most of us are critical thinkers. Most of us it seems are fairly good debaters. We might even enjoy it. (Quote: It's no use debating with an engineer. Sooner or later you realize that the engineer likes it.) Obviously the site wouldn't be as "exciting" without some good debates. But having this mentality (assuming a good portion of it continues into our offline lives) tends to take us away from the core in our hearts and minds. Lately it seems mine is spinning away from the center. A LOT is going on in my life. A forum like this is actually bringing me back. That is why you see me on here so much even with all that is happening. So I'm wondering what some of you all do to keep a Christ-Centered mentality.
  8. I don't have a blog, so when I want to share something you guys just get to deal with it :). A while back I wrote a post about how as I read through the Bible as a youth, I discover that it was hundreds of rated R pages of people messing up again and again. Before this, the people in scripture kind of wore superman capes in my eyes (you know over-glossy-hero-idolizing). But as I read the Bible, I discovered that even the greatest prophets made mistakes just like me. And it is through the power of God everyone of us learns and grows, even through our mistakes. The prophets and all lost their superman capes. This weekend I was reflecting back on that thought train and realized I was missing something. Because I didn’t find just flawed human beings in the scriptures, also I found God. Christ Himself came down and walked among us. He showed us the way: teaching us through word and deed. And through His sacrifice, He understands everything we could go through, and gave us a way to conquer it all: our mistakes, our trails, our flawed selves. Christ: He’s the real Superman. This week is/was Easter, a time to think of Christ’s atonement and all it means. Christ is the great physician: one whom heals the wounds so wonderfully that not even a scar remains. Through Him we grow, we learn, we are healed. Christ doesn’t just heal the mistakes in our lives, He heals the entirety of our lives- our flaws, our hopes, our loves. He makes us complete: He makes us perfect like Him. Christ wants to share everything that He has, everything He is. He wants us to share in His perfection. In the scriptures, when a Lord wants to share everything with his heir, even a prodigal one, the Lord gives the heir his garment. God wants to share everything with us- even his garment. Christ—He wants to share his Superman cape with me. Wow… I know this is just one little dorky analogy I came up with but…. Wow, how underserving I can be of His so perfect love. Today, I write this standing all amazing, confused at the grace so freely He proffers me. Trembling I cry at how much He did for me, confused at a love so deep I cannot comprehend. Lord, how great art thou?
  9. Since 2015 is the Year of the Sheep, should not the followers of the Lamb of God expect great things? Surely, this is a season to be praying, to be sharing our faith, to 'never tire in doing good works, and to always be found 'about the Father's business.' Or...Am I just trying to Christianize an Asian pagan system of fortune telling???
  10. i have heard there are people called to do disciplinary hearings who decide whether you should be excommunicated. i struggle with this because Christ wants us to come closer to Him when we are lost. He will go out of His way to find us and embrace us when we repent and come to Him. when a group of people wanted to cast the adulterous woman out or stone her, He chastised them in a way and brought her close and forgave her, for He knew her heart. in John... "8:10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? 8:11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more." additionally, are these people really that far gone that they cannot change or be worthy of the sacrament unless they choose to be rebaptized? what about disfellowship? can they really not be trusted to simply lead a class in prayer or hold a calling? they can't renew their baptismal convenants by taking the sacrament? don't we want people to be with Heavenly Father, even if they have sinned? that is when they should be even closer. that is when Jesus wants us to come to Him. any insight?
  11. Hi there, my name is Tim and I am a newbie. I am a sincere and devout Christian but I'm not a member of the LDS Church. I have the utmost respect for the character of those who are part of the LDS Church. I feel members of the LDS are some of the most kind, moral, and upstanding individuals in the world. What you do with your families and communities is beyond reproach. I have many friends who are members of the LDS and care for them deeply. I have read, studied, researched, and written about the LDS Church and doctrine as I understand them for a number of years. I have many issues in reconciling LDS doctrines with what I'm taught in the Bible. My studies thus far have been limited to documentation and books written by LDS leaders and apologists along with the typical anti-Mormon rhetoric. I am continually seeking for truth and I feel I still have much to learn. My reason for being here is to make more friends, ask questions, and to learn more about the basis of the LDS doctrine. I'm not here to attack or reproach anyone nor do I come with any kind of arrogant attitude. I sincerely want to learn. And, perhaps I can share some of the information I have garnered through the Holy Spirit in my research and study. God bless each of you, and I hope you will accept me as I am, a sincere, caring, and interested friend.
  12. After debating with some friends i want to see what the concensus on LDS.net is: who is almighty god? does the title almighty god refer to one or all members of the godhead?
  13. Guest

    Searching here..

    I am Filipino Catholic living at the middle of the city here in the Philippines. I would like to know more about LDS and become part of you someday. If I could spend the rest of my life learning about Jesus Christ that would be so much gift from God if He let this happen. Please of someone could help me, here is my contact [Removed]. You may also reach me from my company im working with, here is the number [Removed]. Please help me find you.
  14. On Sunday I was looking at the prayers Jesus taught in 3 Nephi and Matthew. I noticed that he taught to close the prayer "Amen" and did not teach to say "In the name of JC." My husband and I couldn't find out when or how we knew to close the way we currently do. We just found all the missionary and ensign articles that teach the current way. It is obvious in the scrips that all ordinances are done "in the name of JC." I just can't find scriptural evidence of praying "in the name of JC." Oh, the dedicatory prayer in D&C 109 is done in his name, but that would also be an ordinance wouldn't it? Does anyone know the answer to this? I realize we could be missing something obvious. Here are the scriptures where we learn the order of prayer: Matthew 6:9-13 9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. 3 Nephi 13:9-13 9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 11 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 12 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. 13 For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
  15. I have heard Jesus referred to as the 'Second Adam' or as the 'Last Adam'. These terms seem to come from Romans 5:12-19 and 1 Corinthians 15:45-49. What do you think is meant by the idea that Christ is the 'Second Adam'? I know there are lots of commentaries out there, but I am mainly interested in hearing your ideas and points of view. You may want to discuss Comparable ideas, for example: both Adam and Jesus were foreordained, volunteered to take significant roles in the plan of salvation, and were not born to mortal parents in the normal manner. You may want to discuss Contrasting ideas, for example: through Adam we have our physical birth and physical and spiritual death were introduced, while through Jesus we have our spiritual rebirth and physical and spiritual death were overcome. Or you may want to address ways in which Adam is a Type (or is symbolic) of Christ. Please share your ideas, whether profound or simple.
  16. This was a question our instructor in Gospel Doctorine class asked yesterday. Its made me think about what I truly do "hold on to" in the rough times in life. After sleeping on it. . . Trust me to make things more complicated than they are meant to be . . . I boiled it down to one statement. I hold on to my faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is truly my Savior. now its your turn. applepansy
  17. Alleluia707

    There is ONLY ONE GOD

    The Bible says that there is ONLY ONE GOD (Deuteronomy 6:4). However, section 132 of Doctrine and Covenants says that "men may become gods". So which is correct? Well, section 132 of Doctrine and Covenants was written later when Smith wanted to teach Mormons to marry multiple wives. Here he added that in the next life those who followed this new covenant would become gods: "Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them." Doctrine and Covenants 132:20. And what does God say will happen to those who would add to His word or take away from it... "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." -Revelation 22:18,19 "ADD thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." -Proverb 30:6 Many people today question the Bible's veracity. Do you honestly believe that God does not have the power to preserve His Word from a wicked generation? "The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, THOU SHALT PRESERVE THEM FROM THIS GENERATION FOR EVER." -Psalm 12:6,7 Know ye not that the word of God endureth forever? Where do you think the word of God was before false prophet Joseph Smith came along? Hidden? Nay, it cannot be destroyed! "For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: 1:25 But THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURETH FOR EVER. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you." -1st Peter 1:24 So which is correct? The answer is the Bible. Joseph Smith added to God‘s word; thus, he was a liar. You see, if the teachings of the Mormonism are correct now, then they were clearly wrong from 1830 until about 1842 when they thought that there was only one God and that God was not once a man. But if they were correct from 1830 to about 1842, then they are wrong now because Mormon doctrine says that there are many gods (Doctrine and Covenants 132) and that God progressed from once being a man. But from 1 Corinthians 14:33 we learn, "For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints." This confusion of Mormon doctrine should make any thinking person wonder about the reliability of the rest of it's teachings. So then how can you know for sure that you are saved? The Bible says that salvation is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ and not of works. There is no amount of good works or ceremonies that you can do to save your soul because salvation is a gift. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” Ephesians 2:8-9 I’ll say it again, salvation is a gift available for all who simply believe in Jesus Christ. Salvation is sure because it is a gift. Whereas, if it is a matter of works, then no one can be sure of being saved. We see in Acts 16:30-31 where the jailer asked Paul and Silas, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ alone and you will without a shadow of a doubt be saved. “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life...” 1 John 5:13