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Good day friends, I had a question regarding revelation.  For a while I studied the Baha'i Faith and they believe that Baha'u'llah had revelations from God.  He has written many "inspired" works.  The result of these revelations was the Baha'i Faith.  They believe that most religions are right and as time progresses more will be revealed by God.  So according to Baha'u'llah, Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Buddhism, and Islam are correct and their founders are true prophets.  And Baha'u'llah will not be the last prophet, there will be more, but not for many years.  So I guess the idea that the LDS church has living prophets is interesting to me.  Would the LDS church ever recognized someone like Baha'u'llah as a prophet?

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Many people have and seek after revelation, which theoretically makes them some sort of prophet. In this aspect many people could be considered a prophet. However according to our belief there is only one prophet that has stewardship over the church and the entire world in these latter days.

God's house is a house of order, everyone is given according to their stewardship and faith.

 

I don't think the LDS church would recognize him as a prophet, but might recognize him as a wise man with many spiritual truths. Unless he actively preached against or twisted the truth of God.

Edited by Crypto

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A principle of Mormon teaching is that God gives answers to all whom seek Him.  There is good in most all churches and faith traditions.  It is quite possible that XXXXX taught many good things (I’m not familiar enough with his teachings to say much one way or the other).

 

Now, while the Mormon church does recognize that there is goodness everywhere, the Mormon church itself is viewed as 1) the most correct church—meaning it has  the most correct teachings and 2) the church having God’s authority and personally led by God because God is God of order. 

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The Baha'i Faith and the LDS Church have a lot of the same principles and moral standards and they were both formed in the 1800s.  (One in America and one in Iran)  Both Joseph Smith and Baha'u'llah were martyred.  I just couldn't ignore the coincedences.  But I understand the LDS view as being the most correct church.  It just was a thought.  Thanks.

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The Baha'i Faith and the LDS Church have a lot of the same principles and moral standards and they were both formed in the 1800s.  (One in America and one in Iran)  Both Joseph Smith and Baha'u'llah were martyred.  I just couldn't ignore the coincedences.  But I understand the LDS view as being the most correct church.  It just was a thought.  Thanks.

Actually, Baha'u'llah was not martyred. You are probably confusing him with the Bab, who was considered in the Baha'i faith as Baha'u'llah's forerunner, and who was killed in 1850.

 

The coincidences that you mention, however, run much deeper. Both Christian and Muslim movements in the 19th century expected Bible prophecy to be fulfilled in 1844.  That timeline was fulfilled, I believe, by the martyrdom of Joseph and Hyrum Smith in 1844.

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I may be reading more into these scriptures than is really there, but one of the things I believe the scriptures teach is that any "true" prophet will teach and preach about Christ as the Savior, Redeemer, and Messiah (see Jacob 7:11, for example https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/jacob/7.11?lang=eng#10 ). I am not familiar with Ba'Hai or Baha'u'llah 's teachings, but a quick perusal of Wikipedia and a few others suggests that he is "weak" on the central role of Jesus Christ. Personally, I would need to better understand his teachings about Christ before I could accept him as a prophet.

 

That would not necessarily mean that there is no wisdom or truth in any of his teachings.

Edited by MrShorty

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Good day friends, I had a question regarding revelation.  For a while I studied the Baha'i Faith and they believe that Baha'u'llah had revelations from God.  He has written many "inspired" works.  The result of these revelations was the Baha'i Faith.  They believe that most religions are right and as time progresses more will be revealed by God.  So according to Baha'u'llah, Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Buddhism, and Islam are correct and their founders are true prophets.  And Baha'u'llah will not be the last prophet, there will be more, but not for many years.  So I guess the idea that the LDS church has living prophets is interesting to me.  Would the LDS church ever recognized someone like Baha'u'llah as a prophet?

it is quite possible they have had revelation in regards to the people they lead. one does not necessarily need to be a prophet with god's authority to recieve the gift of vision, if you are living in a way that is along the lines of Godliness, or perhaps an individual was given that gift from birth. there are many cultures who have revelations of the future or current times that have helped them, and are relevant. perhaps this is one of the reasons LDS are counseled to seek all good books or good things.

The difference between them and what the LDS consider as a prophet is the authority to bind in heaven as well as on earth- to organize god's people and to have them do his will, and to prepare the things that are of heaven and Christ.

Even if a person did not have that authority, God respects the authority of men in leadership positions, if they are righteous before him, and if they follow that and are humble in spirit, there is no reason for God not to try to assist them in some way that they are receptive to.

Edited by Blackmarch

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I could accept that he was a prophet, and was given truth to lead people toward the Gospel.  But I don't believe he was called to restore priesthood authority, which is really the defining factor that makes the claims of the LDS church unique.

 

Spot on.

 

The reason the LDS church is the "only true and living church", is less about it's access to complete truth (which it doesn't have...God keeps some things to Himself), and more about authority. A man outside the church, even having received gospel knowledge by revelation, (which we actually hope all men will), still has no authority. While we do believe the LDS church as access to a greater portion of truth than other sects, and that we have access to all essential truths for our salvation (by "our" I mean mankind's), the all important authority side of things is too often forgotten or neglected in such discussions.

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It helps to divide between what the LDS church considers a prophet and what is mentioned at times in the New Testament as a prophet.  The LDS church believes that men are specifically set apart to lead the Church and God works through these people.  God communicates with them to direct the work here on the earth.  The New Testament also defines a prophet as anyone who receives revelation, and since we can all feel the Holy Ghost, we can all be prophets.  We do not consider ourselves called to direct the church though and clearly separate the two definitions.  But under the second definition (someone who receives revelation or inspiration from God), Baha'u'llah and other men could have received inspiration from God and could be that type of prophet.  It would take revelation from God to know whether his source of inspiration did come from God or not.

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This discussion reminded me of a quote from Brigham Young:

 

“I want to say to my friends that we believe in all good. If you can find a truth in heaven, earth or hell, it belongs to our doctrine. We believe it; it is ours; we claim it.” (DBY, 2)

 

 

I believe there have been many good and inspired men and women throughout the centuries who have had a positive impact on the world. Anyone with "ears to hear" has access to God's truth. As has been said, however, the word "prophet" has special meaning in the LDS church that denotes not only the ability to receive revelation but also the authority to speak in God's name to members of his church.

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Nemo – This is a good question and as you can see there are a lot of good answers here because it is not as straight forward as “Judaism (Israel), Zoroastrianism (Iran), Christianity (Israel), Buddhism (India), and Islam (Arabia) are correct and their founders are true prophets.

 

Our Book of Mormon teaches us:

2 Nephi 29: 8 Wherefore murmur ye, because that ye shall receive more of my word? Know ye not that the testimony of two nations is a witness unto you that I am God, that I remember one nation like unto another? Wherefore, I speak the same words unto one nation like unto another. And when the two nations shall run together the testimony of the two nations shall run together also.

2 Nephi 29:12

12 For behold, I shall speak unto the Jews and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the Nephites and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the other tribes of the house of Israel, which I have led away, and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto all nations of the earth and they shall write it.

 

These scriptures seem to support your allegation that: Judaism (Israel), Zoroastrianism (Iran), Christianity (Israel), Buddhism (India), and Islam (Arabia) are correct and their founders are true prophetsexcept that the Lord said, , I speak the same words

This is the key to how you can tell if they are true prophets. You being from Tennessee I would guess are quite familiar with the Bible and that should be your standard; that which you can measure other religious books by.  Read the Book of Mormon and test it against what you know in the Bible.

Our founder, Joseph Smith, taught that he and we will accept truth no matter where it comes from.  So, the LDS do not have a corner on that market.

By-in-large Mormons believe that the Constitution of the United States is an inspired document; however we do not talk of Thomas Jefferson as a prophet. To me the Constitution reads like scripture and I think that I could consider Thomas Jefferson a prophet as far as the constitution goes, but I just dont give him that title although I have great respect and admiration for the man.

 

I should stop here, but if you can forgive me I would like to make one more point about prophets.  When Mohammed received his inspiration over time (610 – 632 AD) he could neither read nor write so the Muslims tell us.  The Koran was the first book ever written in Arabic script.  Before the Arabic script was finalized some 100 years after Mohammeds death the common script in  use was an Aramaic script; which Mohammed did know that either.  My guess is that Mohammed could have been a prophet to the Arabians (I dont  know) but his sayings may have been changed in places where the Koran does not coincide with the teachings of the Bible.  Anciently all Holy books were subject to the whims of those who controlled them, even the Bible. That is why I believe the Book of Mormon is so important. It is another witness of Christ.  It says the same thing as the Bible does doctrinally. You can use the Bible and the Book of Mormon to judge other books. 

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So I guess the idea that the LDS church has living prophets is interesting to me.  Would the LDS church ever recognized someone like Baha'u'llah as a prophet?

 

This question sounds a little like the question to which Doctrine and Covenants 49 is the answer. 

 

Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet to Sidney Rigdon, Parley P. Pratt, and Leman Copley, at Kirtland, Ohio, May 7, 1831. Leman Copley had embraced the gospel but still held to some of the teachings of the Shakers (United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing), to which he had formerly belonged. Some of the beliefs of the Shakers were that Christ’s Second Coming had already occurred and that He had appeared in the form of a woman, Ann Lee. They did not consider baptism by water essential. They rejected marriage and believed in a life of total celibacy. Some Shakers also forbade the eating of meat. In prefacing this revelation, Joseph Smith’s history states, “In order to have [a] more perfect understanding on the subject, I inquired of the Lord, and received the following.” The revelation refutes some of the basic concepts of the Shaker group. The aforementioned brethren took a copy of the revelation to the Shaker community (near Cleveland, Ohio) and read it to them in its entirety, but it was rejected.

 

See also Section 43: 1 - 5

 

 1 O hearken, ye elders of my church, and give ear to the words which I shall speak unto you.

 
 2 For behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, that ye have received a commandment for a law unto my church, through him whom I have appointed unto you to receive commandments and revelations from my hand.
 
 3 And this ye shall know assuredly—that there is none other appointed unto you to receive commandments and revelations until he be taken, if he abide in me.
 
 4 But verily, verily, I say unto you, that none else shall be appointed unto this gift except it be through him; for if it be taken from him he shall not have power except to appoint another in his stead.
 
 5 And this shall be a law unto you, that ye receive not the teachings of any that shall come before you as revelations or commandments;

 

 

On the other hand, Doctrine and Covenants 28, which deals with alternative and false sources of "revelation" seems to limit the Prophet's exclusive right to receive revelation only for the church, which perhaps opens the door to the possibility of others receiving revelation not for the church.

 

Section 28
Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet to Oliver Cowdery, at Fayette, New York, September 1830. Hiram Page, a member of the Church, had a certain stone and professed to be receiving revelations by its aid concerning the upbuilding of Zion and the order of the Church. Several members had been deceived by these claims, and even Oliver Cowdery was wrongly influenced thereby. Just prior to an appointed conference, the Prophet inquired earnestly of the Lord concerning the matter, and this revelation followed.

1–7, Joseph Smith holds the keys of the mysteries, and only he receives revelations for the Church; 8–10, Oliver Cowdery is to preach to the Lamanites; 11–16, Satan deceived Hiram Page and gave him false revelations.

 Behold, say unto thee, Oliverthat it shall be givenunto thee that thou shalt be heard by the church in allthings whatsoever thou shalt teach them by the Comforter,concerning the revelations and commandments which Ihave given.

 But, behold, verily, verily, say unto thee, no one shallbe appointed to receive commandments and revelations in this church excepting my servant Joseph Smith, Jun.for he receiveth them even as Moses.

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Amos 9:7

The Ethiopians, the Philistines, and the Syrians had their own prophets and their own direct and immediate guidance from the very same God that lead the Israelites out of Egypt.

 

So short answer - YES. And LDS prophets from Joseph Smith to Thomas Monson have said as much.

God gives to each person - and to each people - the guidance and direction they need and are ready for at that time. He gave to Buddha the path to enlightenment through selflessness. He gave to Muhammed the path to peace through unity. He gave to Joseph Smith the path to exaltation through communion with God. What did He give to Baha'u'llah?

 

The trouble is that while Latter-day Saints do have the most truth, we have this cultural bias to believe that we have the only truth, so many of the members ignore any truth that doesn't come from an LDS lesson manual (and even a lot which does). But even having the most truth, we still do not have all truth. As a Buddhist, I learned a great deal of truth that you would never hear in an LDS Sunday School.

 

And just to echo what askandanswer said - the Pope can receive revelation for the Catholic church.

 

Now what other religions lack, and what makes the LDS church unique in its revelation, is authentic priesthood authority. That is what opens the door to more revelation than has ever been given to man before, and that is why I confidently say that the LDS church has the most truth.

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The trouble is that while Latter-day Saints do have the most truth, we have this cultural bias to believe that we have the only truth, so many of the members ignore any truth that doesn't come from an LDS lesson manual (and even a lot which does). But even having the most truth, we still do not have all truth. As a Buddhist, I learned a great deal of truth that you would never hear in an LDS Sunday School.

As Joseph taught: "We should gather all the good and true principles in the world and treasure them up, or we shall not come out true Mormons."

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