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2 hours ago, Blueskye2 said:

I don’t know of any other religion that teaches the Apostle John is still alive. What Bible are you reading? ;) Tongue in cheek there.  I know the passage, just Mormons interpret it differently than everyone else.

I believe the question has already been answered.  When I read John 21:20-23 and ignore everything anyone else has said, and just look at the meaning of the words, and then follow it to Luke 9:27, and also check Revelation 10:11, and 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, I see clearly the idea that one can "tarry" until the Second Coming of Christ, at which point, instead of "dying" in the traditional sense, they will be changed from a semi-immortal state to a resurrected state, and that this was to be the state of John the Beloved / the Revelator.

I know other people don't believe that, and that latter-day revelation confirms that understanding, but the words alone seem clear enough to me that while Peter would die, John would remain ("tarry") until Christ's Second Coming - a mortal can't do that, so he has to change somehow to enable it.  If the Lord can raise men from the dead, surely he can delay their death for as long as He wishes.

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5 hours ago, zil said:

It may seem like you're being asked to trust the LDS church, but you're not.  You're being invited to ask God and then trust God.  Sorry, no time to go into any more detail - I need to get ready and go to church.

Actually an investigator IS being asked to trust the LDS church, we are being asked to trust that the LDS church does in fact speak for God and that its claim to be the only true church on the face of the earth is in fact true.

All Churches believe in God and want you to trust him.  That is not the issue to an investigator.  The issue is 'Is this the only true Church that speaks for God' 

Edited by Blossom76
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1 minute ago, Blossom76 said:

Actually an investigator IS being asked to trust the LDS church, we are being asked to trust that the LDS church does intact speak for God and that its claim to be the only true church on the face of the earth is in fact true.

All Churches believe in God and want you to trust him.  That is not the issue to an investigator.  The issue is 'Is this the only true Church that speaks for God'

But the church itself (whatever church it is) cannot answer that question - only God can answer that question.  I don't know what words the missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are using, but what they ask you ought to amount to:

1) Be open to the possibility that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church of Jesus Christ restored to the earth, and that the Book of Mormon is true.

2) Read the Book of Mormon, learn about the restoration, and then ask God whether the Book of Mormon is true.  Don't ask the Church - of course they'll say it is - so what?  Don't ask the missionaries or the members, don't ask the anti-Mormons, don't read everything ever written on the subject (will take multiple lifetimes).  Ask God.

Every church out there thinks they speak for God, thinks they have God's truth, thinks they have God's priesthood / authority to perform ordinances / whatever they want to call this - if they didn't, they wouldn't exist because their founders would have just joined an already-existing church - but they found the others lacking in some way, and so created their own.  That fact alone means you cannot settle the question by asking the church or its believers or even its scriptures (alone).  You must ask the one for whom they all claim to speak - God.

JS-H 1:11-12 (emphasis mine):

Quote

11 While I was laboring under the extreme difficulties caused by the contests of these parties of religionists, I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

12 Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart. I reflected on it again and again, knowing that if any person needed wisdom from God, I did; for how to act I did not know, and unless I could get more wisdom than I then had, I would never know; for the teachers of religion of the different sects understood the same passages of scripture so differently as to destroy all confidence in settling the question by an appeal to the Bible.

We do not ask anyone to follow any process other than the one our own prophet followed - study scripture, then ask God to resolve the conflict between the various "parties of religionists".  Ask with faith and an open mind (see James 1), willing to receive God's answer, no matter what it is, and to act in harmony with it, and God will answer.  Ask with a closed mind, or only out of curiosity with no intent to act on what God tells you, and for your own sake, He will not answer.  It's that simple.

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On 12/1/2017 at 6:48 PM, Grunt said:

WHAT!?!?!

Huh???  I'm not sure why you're now surprised by this.  Remember when I posted this:

You gave the thumbs up on this as if you understood it.

 

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I don't know if the question as posited in the thread title was technically ever answered.

How many Gods do we believe in?  An infinite and ever growing quantity.

Quote
If you could hie to Kolob
In the twinkling of an eye,
And then continue onward
With that same speed to fly,
Do you think that you could ever,
Through all eternity,
Find out the generation
Where Gods began to be?
 
Or see the grand beginning,
Where space did not extend?
Or view the last creation,
Where Gods and matter end?

Methinks the Spirit whispers,
“No man has found ‘pure space,’
Nor seen the outside curtains,
Where nothing has a place.”
 

The number of Gods or plurality of gods in existence is irrelevant, because as Paul put it:

Quote

5 For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,)
6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.

(1 Corinthians 8:5-6) emphasis added

I hope those searching and studying this topic can have the guidance of the Spirit to understand the truth behind Paul's words, and the fullness of their interpretation as made clear through the restored gospel.

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39 minutes ago, Blossom76 said:

Actually an investigator IS being asked to trust the LDS church, we are being asked to trust that the LDS church does in fact speak for God and that its claim to be the only true church on the face of the earth is in fact true.

Moroni 10: 

3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.

4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

(emphasis mine).

We do NOT want you to trust anything we said because we said it.  Rather, we want you to ask God if this true and go off the answer He tells you.

 

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8 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

Moroni 10: 

3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.

4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

1) Read these things

2) Remember the Lord's mercy

3) Ponder (these things and the Lord's mercy)

4) Ask God: (1) in the name of Christ, (2) with a sincere heart, (3) with real intent, (4) having faith in Christ

I think remembering the Lord's mercy, and pondering it and what the Book of Mormon teaches (a big part of which is the Lord's mercy) will aid in #4. :)

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57 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

Huh???  I'm not sure why you're now surprised by this.  Remember when I posted this:

You gave the thumbs up on this as if you understood it.

 

I apparently didn't understand it.

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On 12/2/2017 at 11:15 AM, Grunt said:

SO Mormons believe we all become a part of God?  

 

Im really confused and frustrated.  It seems like you all say different things.  

Yes, yes, this is confusing.  It's confusing for me as a Catholic, it's even more confusing when I've settled some things in my brain as a Catholic and it gets challenged with LDS teaching.  But, I promise, you will be able to settle this in your brain as well even if it takes a while.

So, to the question... "part of God" can get confusing because of the meaning/implication of the words Part and God.  So, first, a Trinitarian has a different understanding of the word God than an LDS.  The question "part of God" is more conducive to Trinitarian usage of the word God than the LDS.  God in LDS is not an ousia (are you familiar with that word?) but more of a State of Being.  Note that there is God (referencing the Person, which if used without qualification would default to God the Father) and there's God (referencing the State of Being that is God).  Being part of God (the Person) doesn't make sense.  Being part of God (the State of Being) kinda makes sense but not quite.  

So, I believe what you're trying to ask is not that "do we all become a part of God" but rather "do we all become God?".  Or in other words, Can we achieve that State of Being that is God?  Jesus answered that question in Gethsemane when he prayed his fervent prayer to the Father that we (through his Atonement) would become God as the Father and the Son are God.  This gives an automatic rankle in my brain (especially having been raised Catholic) because this has been taught to me as blasphemy.

In simple terms (not getting bogged down by the seeming impossibility or blasphemy of us becoming God) - if we attain the perfection of knowledge and unity of Will, etc. etc. that Jesus prayed for in Gethsemane, we will be God and would be added to the list of Persons that is God so that there won't just be God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost there would be God the Grunt all persons in that One True God.  Make sense?  This is Jesus' fervent hope.  It is possible for us to achieve it.  But, of course, that kind of perfection is too impossible for our mortal minds to even wrap around... I mean, we can't even wrap our minds around what exactly that State of Being is, that is called One True God.  What we work on is just to get as close to Christ as we possibly can with the knowledge that we have.  We have faith that all this knowledge will become available to us - most likely in the next life to come - if we remain worthy to receive it.

As far as how God the Father is still of a "higher level" (for lack of a better phrase) when Grunt becomes God... that is illustrated by how God the Son worships and brings ALL glory to God the Father even as they are both God.

Hope this helps instead of add more to the confusion.

 

Edited by anatess2

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13 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

Yes, yes, this is confusing.  It's confusing for me as a Catholic, it's even more confusing when I've settled some things in my brain as a Catholic and it gets challenged with LDS teaching.  But, I promise, you will be able to settle this in your brain as well even if it takes a while.

So, to the question... "part of God" can get confusing because of the meaning/implication of the words Part and God.  So, first, a Trinitarian has a different understanding of the word God than an LDS.  The question "part of God" is more conducive to Trinitarian usage of the word God than the LDS.  God in LDS is not an ousia (are you familiar with that word?) but more of a State of Being.  Note that there is God (referencing the Person, which if used without qualification would default to God the Father) and there's God (referencing the State of Being that is God).  Being part of God (the Person) doesn't make sense.  Being part of God (the State of Being) kinda makes sense but not quite.  

So, I believe what you're trying to ask is not that "do we all become a part of God" but rather "do we all become God?".  Or in other words, Can we achieve that State of Being that is God?  Jesus answered that question in Gethsemane when he prayed his fervent prayer to the Father that we (through his Atonement) would become God as the Father and the Son are God.  This gives an automatic rankle in my brain (especially having been raised Catholic) because this has been taught to me as blasphemy.

In simple terms (not getting bogged down by the seeming impossibility or blasphemy of us becoming God) - if we attain the perfection of knowledge and unity of Will, etc. etc. that Jesus prayed for in Gethsemane, we will be God and would be added to the list of Persons that is God so that there won't just be God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost there would be God the Grunt all persons in that One True God.  Make sense?  This is Jesus' fervent hope.  It is possible for us to achieve it.  But, of course, that kind of perfection is too impossible for our mortal minds to even wrap around... I mean, we can't even wrap our minds around what exactly that State of Being is, that is called One True God.  What we work on is just to get as close to Christ as we possibly can with the knowledge that we have.  We have faith that all this knowledge will become available to us - most likely in the next life to come - if we remain worthy to receive it.

As far as how God the Father is still of a "higher level" (for lack of a better phrase) when Grunt becomes God... that is illustrated by how God the Son worships and brings ALL glory to God the Father even as they are both God.

Hope this helps instead of add more to the confusion.

 

It helps.  President Holland spoke about it tonight with me.  His explanation helped a lot.  

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To understand what the church's teaching is on the nature of the Father and the Son and the relationship between them I really think that the best source is "The Father and the Son: A Doctrinal Exposition by the First Presidency and the Twelve." You can read about the exposition in volume 5 of Messages of the First Presidency under the heading "The Father and the Son June 2016. If you are signed up for GospeLink.com you can access volume 5 online through the Presidents of the Church category. I haven't read it and I don't intend to because I'm happy with my understanding of the Godhood and the relationship between its members, but for those still seeking to develop their own understanding, or seeking to understand what is the church's teaching on this topic, then I think this is the best source. I suspect that a lot of the rest is opinion, speculation and informed logic and reasoning, none of which is anywhere near as good as the revealed word of God or the teachings of His prophets. I also recommend reading from the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, under the headings God, (http://eom.byu.edu/index.php/God) God - attribute of (,http://eom.byu.edu/index.php/God,_Attributes_of)  Godhead( http://eom.byu.edu/index.php/Godhead) and Godhood  http://eom.byu.edu/index.php/Godhood. When reading from the Encyclopedia it would do well to keep in mind @JaneDoe reminder that it is not official doctrine, but in my personal opinion, its still a very useful source of information on doctrinal matters. 

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12 minutes ago, Grunt said:

It helps.  President Holland spoke about it tonight with me.  His explanation helped a lot.  

President Holland junior, rather than Elder Holland senior? I was wondering how your meeting with the Stake President went last night and hope you might feel inclined to share a little more with us about it.

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2 minutes ago, askandanswer said:

President Holland junior, rather than Elder Holland senior? I was wondering how your meeting with the Stake President went last night and hope you might feel inclined to share a little more with us about it.

It was this evening.  President Holland is our Stake President.  It went well.  We didn't talk about specifics.  Just general philosophy, how words can get in the way, and some advice and wisdom.  He's very nice.

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1 minute ago, Grunt said:

I didn't want to come right out and say it.

Dude, we already knew it, whether you said it or not. :) I mean, "son of an apostle" doesn't necessarily mean anything, but one who's also a stake president - I'm pretty sure his understanding exceeds (most of?) ours.

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16 minutes ago, zil said:

Dude, we already knew it, whether you said it or not. :) I mean, "son of an apostle" doesn't necessarily mean anything, but one who's also a stake president - I'm pretty sure his understanding exceeds (most of?) ours.

He would never give you the answers, though.  Only just enough to ease my mind and point me in the right direction.   

He said he gives me his "seal of approval" if I decide to join.  He was one of those people who just make you feel better being around him.

Edited by Grunt

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3 minutes ago, Grunt said:

He would never give you the answers, though.  Only just enough to ease my mind and point me in the right direction.   

It's the best way to learn - we appreciate more what we figure out for ourselves - working for understanding.

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3 hours ago, person0 said:

I don't know if the question as posited in the thread title was technically ever answered.

How many Gods do we believe in?  An infinite and ever growing quantity.

The number of Gods or plurality of gods in existence is irrelevant, because as Paul put it:

I hope those searching and studying this topic can have the guidance of the Spirit to understand the truth behind Paul's words, and the fullness of their interpretation as made clear through the restored gospel.

I agree with @person0's explanation, but I will take the other side of the argument:

We believe in one God. Period. And that God is the Father. We worship the Father, and in the full and ultimate sense of the word, we worship the Father alone, and no one else. It is to the Father, and to no one else, that we pray. It is with the Father, and with no one else, that we make our covenants. It is the Father's plan that saves and exalts us. It is the Father to whom we hope and strive to return. We worship one God -- the Father. In this, we emulate our Savior, who taught and worshipped in precisely this manner.

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Just now, Grunt said:

He would never give you the answers, though.  Only just enough to ease my mind and point me in the right direction.   

He knows that when you uncover the truth for yourself, it becomes a part of you, as the truth is impressed upon your soul by the Spirit of God.  When you are given an answer it helps, but no matter how reasonable it may seem, it is much less likely to have the same effect unless you follow it up with personal study to experience it for yourself.  This is the same reason the missionaries and others may teach us the restored gospel, but we still must study, ponder, and pray if it is ever to be impressed upon us as the truth of God.

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6 hours ago, zil said:

I believe the question has already been answered.  When I read John 21:20-23 and ignore everything anyone else has said, and just look at the meaning of the words, and then follow it to Luke 9:27, and also check Revelation 10:11, and 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, I see clearly the idea that one can "tarry" until the Second Coming of Christ, at which point, instead of "dying" in the traditional sense, they will be changed from a semi-immortal state to a resurrected state, and that this was to be the state of John the Beloved / the Revelator.

I know other people don't believe that, and that latter-day revelation confirms that understanding, but the words alone seem clear enough to me that while Peter would die, John would remain ("tarry") until Christ's Second Coming - a mortal can't do that, so he has to change somehow to enable it.  If the Lord can raise men from the dead, surely he can delay their death for as long as He wishes.

Yes that is the passage I alluded to.  The opposite is obvious to me.

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1 hour ago, Blueskye2 said:

Yes that is the passage I alluded to.  The opposite is obvious to me.

I agree with this, it says

20 Peter, turning around, *saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them; the one who also had leaned back on His bosom at the supper and said, “Lord, who is the one who betrays You?”

 21 So Peter seeing him *said to Jesus, “Lord, and what about this man?”

 22 Jesus *said to him, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow Me!” 

23 Therefore this saying went out among the brethren that that disciple would not die; yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but only, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you?”

The way I read it, it clearly says Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, this passage is highlighting the fact that they misunderstood what Jesus meant and went around saying things that Jesus had not said.  I don't understand how that is supposed to support the theory that John didn't die?

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6 minutes ago, Blossom76 said:

I agree with this, it says

20 Peter, turning around, *saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them; the one who also had leaned back on His bosom at the supper and said, “Lord, who is the one who betrays You?”

 21 So Peter seeing him *said to Jesus, “Lord, and what about this man?”

 22 Jesus *said to him, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow Me!” 

23 Therefore this saying went out among the brethren that that disciple would not die; yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but only, “If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you?”

The way I read it, it clearly says Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, this passage is highlighting the fact that they misunderstood what Jesus meant and went around saying things that Jesus had not said.  I don't understand how that is supposed to support the theory that John didn't die?

LDS use the Book of Mormon, which cites this passage and “clarifies” for them that St. John the Evangelist, did not die.

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6 hours ago, person0 said:

I don't know if the question as posited in the thread title was technically ever answered.

How many Gods do we believe in? 

What are you talking about?  I said:  42.:)

 

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7 hours ago, Blossom76 said:

All Churches believe in God and want you to trust him.  That is not the issue to an investigator.  The issue is 'Is this the only true Church that speaks for God' 

 

Obviously, you do not understand that the only “true” Church is the true Kingdom of G-d – the realm over which G-d (not men of high standing) governs as king.  If there is one true G-d there is only one true kingdom over which he is the rightful king.  The ancient Pharisees thought they were citizens of the kingdom of G-d and thought they could prove it through their scriptures – but they were instrumental in crucifying the rightful king - proving that not all religions speak for G-g even if they think they can prove that sometime in the past there was a Church (Kingdom) of G-d to which their “fathers” belonged.

The issue is not the traditions of men but seeking truth – which includes the turth of the True and Living Church which is the True and Living Kingdom of the True and Living G-d.

 

The Traveler

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