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There was a Mormon temple built near where I lived. They opened it up for tours then tour out all of the carpet and replaced it because non-Mormons had walked on it. WTF?
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I'm not to great with verse references, but I think that a person is worthy because of what they do, what Jesus did, and what is in their heart. A person's actions can count for or against them. The atonement can wipe out sins if a person repents. As for your heart-- I believe that the most important thing is not which church you belong to, but whether you are a kind and loving person. Of course belonging to the correct religion means that you're more likely to be steering your life in the right direction, but if there's say a prideful snobby Christian versus say a kind selfless Buddhist, I think that the kind selfless one will be more worthy of heaven.

I guess I've developed this opinion because of the example of Jesus Christ-- he always loved everyone, no matter who they were, and he always looked past who they were on the outside and only looked at who they were on the outside. The story where He drives the money-makers from the temple comes to mind-- on the outside they were "doing God's will" but on the inside they knew that they were perverting the temple grounds and exploiting the people. They knew what they were doing was wrong, but they did it anyways, and that, I think, is one of the main reasons it made Christ so upset.

As I read over this last point, I can imagine what you might say next. Perhaps you would compare the LDS church to those money makers, and you might ask "How do you know your church isn't the one perverting sacred things and exploiting members?" "Why do you believe that your church is the one that should be trusted and followed?" This is where I have trouble explaining. I can explain why I have my own opinions based on my belief in the LDS church, the same way someone else might justify their opinions based on what the Bible says, but I don't know how to explain why I have such a strong belief in my religion in particular.

Maybe I just feel like I'm so bad at explaining because I'm afraid that other people will just brush it off and say that it's not substantial enough evidence to justify my faith. I haven't lived a very remarkable life. There is no one miraculous experience that confirmed my testimony in my church. God has worked in my life in very subtle ways, so I can't be sure if anyone will understand when I try to explain them. For all it's worth, here I go:

I believe in the LDS church because so many of its principles ring true for me on a profound level. I believe because I have felt the Holy Spirit confirming to me it is true. I believe because it teaches me of the plan of salvation and happiness that God has set up for us, which is much clearer and truer than the vague idea that other churches have of our purpose on Earth. I believe because I really do feel we are God's children, and like all children we have the potential to grow to become like him. I believe because it seems only natural to me that God would never leave us in this confusing time without a living prophet to guide our way. I believe because it seems only natural to me that the Israelites were not the only people with the gospel, and that God would stay with any people who loved him and wanted to keep his commandments (i.e. the Nephites). I believe because it is only natural that God would want us to have more records and scripture from other cultures (i.e. B of M) so that we could have a clearer idea of his gospel amidst all the conflicts and disagreements that arise from some vague spots of the gospel. I believe because I find it true that families should be together forever, not married "till death do you part".

I suppose I could go on, but the basic point is that it "feels" true to me. I don't know whether anyone else can consider that "evidence".


What I have trouble understanding, though, is WHY you choose to follow the prophet you do. Does he perform prophecy or miracles? And how valid can he really be, being the prophet of a religion who has repeatedly failed in prophecy and changed so many foundational beliefs over the decades? Joseph Smith taught that Native Americans came from Jerusalem, which was debunked by genetic research. He taught an "everlasting covenant" of polygamy which lasted no more than 50 years, after having written scripture in the Book of Mormon that said polygamy was a detestable sin, when the Book of Mormon is self-proclaiming as the most true of any book on earth. On top of that, the Book of Mormon itself, while having been claimed to be the most true book on the planet, has been edited numerous times. With all of this evidence against the religion, how can a person really be sure that the spirit they're listening to is God's Holy Spirit? After all, hearing something from the Holy Spirit shouldn't just make you 'feel good' inside. A lot of things that make us FEEL good are in fact not so good for us. It takes discernment and reasoning to really know if that good feeling is true or not. What's more, I would have to ask why a prophet is even needed in these days? Wasn't the work Jesus Christ did enough? Why do we need someone else to talk to God for us, when the Holy Spirit was given freely to mankind after the death of Christ?


>_< I'm still having troubles explaining. . .. I honestly don't know how to help you understand my reasons for believing in my church. Some things about the church really confuse me-- for example, the whole polygamy deal. I can't justify it, I don't know why it ever popped up. I can't think of any good reason that can't be shot down by someone else. My faith isn't rooted in things like that. It's like when people ask how I can believe that God can be loving and forgiving when he killed so many people in the Old Testament. I don't know why he did it-- it seems cruel and wrong, but I love and trust God so I don't worry about the wired things he's done in the past. Even if you don't agree with me about my church, maybe you can relate to the feeling if you've ever been in this situation.

Until the last of Christ's apostles died there had always been prophets in the world, leading people, guiding them, receiving revelation, answering questions and clearing up confusion about the gospel. These days are full of confusion and controversy about religion amoung other things, and leaving us without a prophet is like leaving us in the dark. I don't think God would do that.

As for the Holy Spirit, it's not just a simple "feel good" sensation. It's deep, personal, profound, and true. It's not the sort of thing that I can doubt the sincerity of, and I don't know how to explain it to someone who hasn't experienced it. >_<
First off, you make the assumption that I don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. That's one thing you may want to put out of your mind right now. As for how a loving god could wipe out nations in the Old Testament, look again at the nations that were wiped out. It's easy to explain. It's justice. And how could a loving God exact justice? Easily: because a God who does not execute justice to those who have earned their losses is not being very loving to those who were faithful to Him.

If you really have such trouble explaining it, I suggest learning more about your faith. It's not some passive thing that you can be spoon-fed by your teachers. It's something you have to challenge yourself. If you've got nothing more than a feeling, I feel sorry for you. Like I've said before, fulfilled hearts are not strengthened by empty heads. If you've got a problem explaining this to me, take me out of the equation for a minute: how will you explain it to yourself? Or better yet, how will you explain it to God Himself when the time comes, and HE asks "why do you deserve to be in my kingdom?" Is your answer going to be because of the religion you followed? Or will it be because of His son and His word? Or do you even consider yourself worthy? Because if you honestly think that you can make it into Heaven on your own religious merit, you may want to study that Bible again. IT says that the ONLY pure and genuine religion in God's sight is to care for the widows and orphans and not be corrupted by the world, and in the world there ARE false prophets and deceivers. If you go and follow one of them, and your only excuse is that you couldn't tell the difference, will a God of justice accept that?
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You yourself had just said that in order to be a FULL member, missionary service is required. Last I checked, ministry is not limited to a two year span of strict rules and dressing like clones.

Why shouldn't members of a religious group dress the same? Members of any other social group often do... Baptists often dress very similarly every Sunday, so do Catholics and many other Christian sects. At least the males do anyway, which is common among humans.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
True, there are MANY self-proclaimed Christians who just go through motions making no effort to renew their heart, but there are also those who give their lives to ministry, not just two years.

There are Mormons that do the same. They don't all stop after two years. In fact, I've personally known a few different Mormons that moved to another area permanently to start ministries. I've also known others who at the least donated to worthy causes on a routine basis. Not to mention the fact that I've met and heard of very few non-Mormon Christians who have dedicated two straight years to missionary work.

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It doesn't take a bishopric or a special priesthood to spread the Gospel, as Jesus Himself said when his followers wanted to stop a man who was healing and casting out demons in Jesus' name, but who was not a part of their group.

It doesn't take being a priest in the Mormon church to spread the Gospel either. They don't have any prohibition saying that non-members CAN NOT spread Mormonism. Its just that it is required if one wishes to be a full member.

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Mormons claim to be the one true church, the one true religion, but Jesus Christ NEVER preached a religion.

Excuse me? Jesus of Nazareth NEVER preached religion? Have you even READ the New Testament? "Jesus answered, 'I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me." John 14:6 NIV. That sounds a WHOLE LOT like preaching religion to me.

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The reason I have a problem with the Mormon religion is that: They say that their church is the only true church to reach the highest heaven, when Jesus said that HE is the way. A church that claims to be the best or only way to heaven has tried to steal that glory from Christ, who gave His life for us all.

Every other Christian church I have EVER heard of claims the exact same thing. It isn't an aberration that Mormons say that. Simply because other Christians don't accept that Mormons are Christian doesn't mean that they don't fit undo the umbrella term that is "Christianity." It is their BELIEFS that make them Christian. They follow the Nicene Creed as far as I know (or at least do now).

In any case, its a bit odd that that Mormons aren't considered Christian by many other Christians and yet Catholics are. If you ask me there are more practices in Catholicism that are in breech of Christian beliefs than there are in Mormonism.
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What I have trouble understanding, though, is WHY you choose to follow the prophet you do. Does he perform prophecy or miracles? And how valid can he really be, being the prophet of a religion who has repeatedly failed in prophecy and changed so many foundational beliefs over the decades? Joseph Smith taught that Native Americans came from Jerusalem, which was debunked by genetic research. He taught an "everlasting covenant" of polygamy which lasted no more than 50 years, after having written scripture in the Book of Mormon that said polygamy was a detestable sin, when the Book of Mormon is self-proclaiming as the most true of any book on earth. On top of that, the Book of Mormon itself, while having been claimed to be the most true book on the planet, has been edited numerous times. With all of this evidence against the religion, how can a person really be sure that the spirit they're listening to is God's Holy Spirit? After all, hearing something from the Holy Spirit shouldn't just make you 'feel good' inside. A lot of things that make us FEEL good are in fact not so good for us. It takes discernment and reasoning to really know if that good feeling is true or not. What's more, I would have to ask why a prophet is even needed in these days? Wasn't the work Jesus Christ did enough? Why do we need someone else to talk to God for us, when the Holy Spirit was given freely to mankind after the death of Christ?


>_< I'm still having troubles explaining. . .. I honestly don't know how to help you understand my reasons for believing in my church. Some things about the church really confuse me-- for example, the whole polygamy deal. I can't justify it, I don't know why it ever popped up. I can't think of any good reason that can't be shot down by someone else. My faith isn't rooted in things like that. It's like when people ask how I can believe that God can be loving and forgiving when he killed so many people in the Old Testament. I don't know why he did it-- it seems cruel and wrong, but I love and trust God so I don't worry about the wired things he's done in the past. Even if you don't agree with me about my church, maybe you can relate to the feeling if you've ever been in this situation.

Until the last of Christ's apostles died there had always been prophets in the world, leading people, guiding them, receiving revelation, answering questions and clearing up confusion about the gospel. These days are full of confusion and controversy about religion amoung other things, and leaving us without a prophet is like leaving us in the dark. I don't think God would do that.

As for the Holy Spirit, it's not just a simple "feel good" sensation. It's deep, personal, profound, and true. It's not the sort of thing that I can doubt the sincerity of, and I don't know how to explain it to someone who hasn't experienced it. >_<


First off, you make the assumption that I don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. That's one thing you may want to put out of your mind right now. As for how a loving god could wipe out nations in the Old Testament, look again at the nations that were wiped out. It's easy to explain. It's justice. And how could a loving God exact justice? Easily: because a God who does not execute justice to those who have earned their losses is not being very loving to those who were faithful to Him.

If you really have such trouble explaining it, I suggest learning more about your faith. It's not some passive thing that you can be spoon-fed by your teachers. It's something you have to challenge yourself. If you've got nothing more than a feeling, I feel sorry for you. Like I've said before, fulfilled hearts are not strengthened by empty heads. If you've got a problem explaining this to me, take me out of the equation for a minute: how will you explain it to yourself? Or better yet, how will you explain it to God Himself when the time comes, and HE asks "why do you deserve to be in my kingdom?" Is your answer going to be because of the religion you followed? Or will it be because of His son and His word? Or do you even consider yourself worthy? Because if you honestly think that you can make it into Heaven on your own religious merit, you may want to study that Bible again. IT says that the ONLY pure and genuine religion in God's sight is to care for the widows and orphans and not be corrupted by the world, and in the world there ARE false prophets and deceivers. If you go and follow one of them, and your only excuse is that you couldn't tell the difference, will a God of justice accept that?


Sorry, I didn't mean to say that you personally don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. When I made that comment I was thinking more about previous encounters with atheists. Speaking of assumptions though, why do you assume that the only thing I think is important to get to heaven is what religion I follow. Didn't I already say: religion is what guides your life, but what you do with your life and how closely you follow Christ's example is what will ultimately make you worthy to live with God.

I'm a big fan about looking at things with an eternal perspective, so maybe that's another way for me to explain why I believe in this church. A lot of people criticize various details about things that happened during the founding of the church and so forth, but that's just not a part that plays a big role in the reason for my testimony. Most of the reason I believe in the church comes from how much I agree on what it teaches about God's eternal plan for us.

Another story that comes to mind for me is that of the Golden Calf. I was very surprised when I found out that it was Aaron who built the calf. Aaron, who was supposed to be this really righteous guy. I guess it just goes to show that everyone messes up sometimes, and sometimes even prophets will mess up big time, like with Aaron and the calf. It doesn't mean that God should be mistrusted because of the occasional mistake made by those who represent him. I'm not familiar with every case of LDS prophets making mistakes, but I'm sure that this principle can apply most of the time. I don't blindly follow everything that the prophets say; I just happen to agree with the vast majority of it. If I ever come across something that the prophets have taught which I do not agree with What I do is pray to God about it. Usually the answer to these sort of prayers is to be at peace and to not worry about it because even though it doesn't make sense to me there's a reason behind everything.
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What I have trouble understanding, though, is WHY you choose to follow the prophet you do. Does he perform prophecy or miracles? And how valid can he really be, being the prophet of a religion who has repeatedly failed in prophecy and changed so many foundational beliefs over the decades? Joseph Smith taught that Native Americans came from Jerusalem, which was debunked by genetic research. He taught an "everlasting covenant" of polygamy which lasted no more than 50 years, after having written scripture in the Book of Mormon that said polygamy was a detestable sin, when the Book of Mormon is self-proclaiming as the most true of any book on earth. On top of that, the Book of Mormon itself, while having been claimed to be the most true book on the planet, has been edited numerous times. With all of this evidence against the religion, how can a person really be sure that the spirit they're listening to is God's Holy Spirit? After all, hearing something from the Holy Spirit shouldn't just make you 'feel good' inside. A lot of things that make us FEEL good are in fact not so good for us. It takes discernment and reasoning to really know if that good feeling is true or not. What's more, I would have to ask why a prophet is even needed in these days? Wasn't the work Jesus Christ did enough? Why do we need someone else to talk to God for us, when the Holy Spirit was given freely to mankind after the death of Christ?


>_< I'm still having troubles explaining. . .. I honestly don't know how to help you understand my reasons for believing in my church. Some things about the church really confuse me-- for example, the whole polygamy deal. I can't justify it, I don't know why it ever popped up. I can't think of any good reason that can't be shot down by someone else. My faith isn't rooted in things like that. It's like when people ask how I can believe that God can be loving and forgiving when he killed so many people in the Old Testament. I don't know why he did it-- it seems cruel and wrong, but I love and trust God so I don't worry about the wired things he's done in the past. Even if you don't agree with me about my church, maybe you can relate to the feeling if you've ever been in this situation.

Until the last of Christ's apostles died there had always been prophets in the world, leading people, guiding them, receiving revelation, answering questions and clearing up confusion about the gospel. These days are full of confusion and controversy about religion amoung other things, and leaving us without a prophet is like leaving us in the dark. I don't think God would do that.

As for the Holy Spirit, it's not just a simple "feel good" sensation. It's deep, personal, profound, and true. It's not the sort of thing that I can doubt the sincerity of, and I don't know how to explain it to someone who hasn't experienced it. >_<


First off, you make the assumption that I don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. That's one thing you may want to put out of your mind right now. As for how a loving god could wipe out nations in the Old Testament, look again at the nations that were wiped out. It's easy to explain. It's justice. And how could a loving God exact justice? Easily: because a God who does not execute justice to those who have earned their losses is not being very loving to those who were faithful to Him.

If you really have such trouble explaining it, I suggest learning more about your faith. It's not some passive thing that you can be spoon-fed by your teachers. It's something you have to challenge yourself. If you've got nothing more than a feeling, I feel sorry for you. Like I've said before, fulfilled hearts are not strengthened by empty heads. If you've got a problem explaining this to me, take me out of the equation for a minute: how will you explain it to yourself? Or better yet, how will you explain it to God Himself when the time comes, and HE asks "why do you deserve to be in my kingdom?" Is your answer going to be because of the religion you followed? Or will it be because of His son and His word? Or do you even consider yourself worthy? Because if you honestly think that you can make it into Heaven on your own religious merit, you may want to study that Bible again. IT says that the ONLY pure and genuine religion in God's sight is to care for the widows and orphans and not be corrupted by the world, and in the world there ARE false prophets and deceivers. If you go and follow one of them, and your only excuse is that you couldn't tell the difference, will a God of justice accept that?


Sorry, I didn't mean to say that you personally don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. When I made that comment I was thinking more about previous encounters with atheists. Speaking of assumptions though, why do you assume that the only thing I think is important to get to heaven is what religion I follow. Didn't I already say: religion is what guides your life, but what you do with your life and how closely you follow Christ's example is what will ultimately make you worthy to live with God.

I'm a big fan about looking at things with an eternal perspective, so maybe that's another way for me to explain why I believe in this church. A lot of people criticize various details about things that happened during the founding of the church and so forth, but that's just not a part that plays a big role in the reason for my testimony. Most of the reason I believe in the church comes from how much I agree on what it teaches about God's eternal plan for us.

Another story that comes to mind for me is that of the Golden Calf. I was very surprised when I found out that it was Aaron who built the calf. Aaron, who was supposed to be this really righteous guy. I guess it just goes to show that everyone messes up sometimes, and sometimes even prophets will mess up big time, like with Aaron and the calf. It doesn't mean that God should be mistrusted because of the occasional mistake made by those who represent him. I'm not familiar with every case of LDS prophets making mistakes, but I'm sure that this principle can apply most of the time. I don't blindly follow everything that the prophets say; I just happen to agree with the vast majority of it. If I ever come across something that the prophets have taught which I do not agree with What I do is pray to God about it. Usually the answer to these sort of prayers is to be at peace and to not worry about it because even though it doesn't make sense to me there's a reason behind everything.
So you tell me that you follow someone who you don't fully agree with, and that God simply tells you "don't worry about it" instead of actually giving you an answer. I'm sorry, but I just have trouble accepting that, seeing as in my relationship with God, I've received answers instead of cop-outs. It might also interest you to remember that Aaron was not the Prophet, Moses was. It is also in scripture that if a Prophecy is made in God's name that does not come true, that the prophet is to be written off as a liar. Also, using religion to guide life also goes against what Christ taught. Look at how Jesus talked to the Pharisees. The Pharisees treated religion as the guide and law of life, instead of recognizing as God Himself being the one who made them holy. Jesus told people to turn to God for forgiveness, to accept the work that God did in their lives, not to think that one is worthy because of what they do. If you have something in scripture to prove me wrong, go ahead and bring it out. If we are truly fellow Christians, than we should agree that scripture is better than opinions for correcting what is wrong in the faith.
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You yourself had just said that in order to be a FULL member, missionary service is required. Last I checked, ministry is not limited to a two year span of strict rules and dressing like clones.

Why shouldn't members of a religious group dress the same? Members of any other social group often do... Baptists often dress very similarly every Sunday, so do Catholics and many other Christian sects. At least the males do anyway, which is common among humans.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
True, there are MANY self-proclaimed Christians who just go through motions making no effort to renew their heart, but there are also those who give their lives to ministry, not just two years.

There are Mormons that do the same. They don't all stop after two years. In fact, I've personally known a few different Mormons that moved to another area permanently to start ministries. I've also known others who at the least donated to worthy causes on a routine basis. Not to mention the fact that I've met and heard of very few non-Mormon Christians who have dedicated two straight years to missionary work.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
It doesn't take a bishopric or a special priesthood to spread the Gospel, as Jesus Himself said when his followers wanted to stop a man who was healing and casting out demons in Jesus' name, but who was not a part of their group.

It doesn't take being a priest in the Mormon church to spread the Gospel either. They don't have any prohibition saying that non-members CAN NOT spread Mormonism. Its just that it is required if one wishes to be a full member.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
Mormons claim to be the one true church, the one true religion, but Jesus Christ NEVER preached a religion.

Excuse me? Jesus of Nazareth NEVER preached religion? Have you even READ the New Testament? "Jesus answered, 'I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me." John 14:6 NIV. That sounds a WHOLE LOT like preaching religion to me.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
The reason I have a problem with the Mormon religion is that: They say that their church is the only true church to reach the highest heaven, when Jesus said that HE is the way. A church that claims to be the best or only way to heaven has tried to steal that glory from Christ, who gave His life for us all.

Every other Christian church I have EVER heard of claims the exact same thing. It isn't an aberration that Mormons say that. Simply because other Christians don't accept that Mormons are Christian doesn't mean that they don't fit undo the umbrella term that is "Christianity." It is their BELIEFS that make them Christian. They follow the Nicene Creed as far as I know (or at least do now).

In any case, its a bit odd that that Mormons aren't considered Christian by many other Christians and yet Catholics are. If you ask me there are more practices in Catholicism that are in breech of Christian beliefs than there are in Mormonism.
I'd ask you to look at how the Bible specifically defines and describes religion. Religion, as mentioned in the Bible, is what the Pharisees taught and lived by. And look at how Jesus spoke to them. Not very flattering. The Bible even goes so far as to say that the ONLY pure 'religion' in God's sight is to care for others and not be corrupted by the world, not to try looking holy enough to get in.

As far as Catholics are concerned, I'd have to agree with you on that one that there's a bit of an un-Christian stuff going on there. Praying to dead saints, for one, and following a Pope hinging on his every word as God's word (not much unlike the Mormon Prophet) shows a dangerous lack of accountability in leadership.
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I'd ask you to look at how the Bible specifically defines and describes religion. Religion, as mentioned in the Bible, is what the Pharisees taught and lived by. And look at how Jesus spoke to them. Not very flattering. The Bible even goes so far as to say that the ONLY pure 'religion' in God's sight is to care for others and not be corrupted by the world, not to try looking holy enough to get in.

Mormons would probably argue the same thing.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
As far as Catholics are concerned, I'd have to agree with you on that one that there's a bit of an un-Christian stuff going on there. Praying to dead saints, for one, and following a Pope hinging on his every word as God's word (not much unlike the Mormon Prophet) shows a dangerous lack of accountability in leadership.

Well, at least we can agree on something! Haha. Of course there is a lack of accountability in leadership, their Church was built on authority figures.
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I'd ask you to look at how the Bible specifically defines and describes religion. Religion, as mentioned in the Bible, is what the Pharisees taught and lived by. And look at how Jesus spoke to them. Not very flattering. The Bible even goes so far as to say that the ONLY pure 'religion' in God's sight is to care for others and not be corrupted by the world, not to try looking holy enough to get in.

Mormons would probably argue the same thing.

Neophenx de Chrysalya
As far as Catholics are concerned, I'd have to agree with you on that one that there's a bit of an un-Christian stuff going on there. Praying to dead saints, for one, and following a Pope hinging on his every word as God's word (not much unlike the Mormon Prophet) shows a dangerous lack of accountability in leadership.

Well, at least we can agree on something! Haha. Of course there is a lack of accountability in leadership, their Church was built on authority figures.


What I don't understand is that if a Mormon argues that only God makes someone holy, then what is the reason for the massive importance of being 'temple worthy' to be a full member of the church, if God Himself is the one who decides who gets in?
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First off, you make the assumption that I don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. That's one thing you may want to put out of your mind right now. As for how a loving god could wipe out nations in the Old Testament, look again at the nations that were wiped out. It's easy to explain. It's justice. And how could a loving God exact justice? Easily: because a God who does not execute justice to those who have earned their losses is not being very loving to those who were faithful to Him.

If you really have such trouble explaining it, I suggest learning more about your faith. It's not some passive thing that you can be spoon-fed by your teachers. It's something you have to challenge yourself. If you've got nothing more than a feeling, I feel sorry for you. Like I've said before, fulfilled hearts are not strengthened by empty heads. If you've got a problem explaining this to me, take me out of the equation for a minute: how will you explain it to yourself? Or better yet, how will you explain it to God Himself when the time comes, and HE asks "why do you deserve to be in my kingdom?" Is your answer going to be because of the religion you followed? Or will it be because of His son and His word? Or do you even consider yourself worthy? Because if you honestly think that you can make it into Heaven on your own religious merit, you may want to study that Bible again. IT says that the ONLY pure and genuine religion in God's sight is to care for the widows and orphans and not be corrupted by the world, and in the world there ARE false prophets and deceivers. If you go and follow one of them, and your only excuse is that you couldn't tell the difference, will a God of justice accept that?


Sorry, I didn't mean to say that you personally don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit. When I made that comment I was thinking more about previous encounters with atheists. Speaking of assumptions though, why do you assume that the only thing I think is important to get to heaven is what religion I follow. Didn't I already say: religion is what guides your life, but what you do with your life and how closely you follow Christ's example is what will ultimately make you worthy to live with God.

I'm a big fan about looking at things with an eternal perspective, so maybe that's another way for me to explain why I believe in this church. A lot of people criticize various details about things that happened during the founding of the church and so forth, but that's just not a part that plays a big role in the reason for my testimony. Most of the reason I believe in the church comes from how much I agree on what it teaches about God's eternal plan for us.

Another story that comes to mind for me is that of the Golden Calf. I was very surprised when I found out that it was Aaron who built the calf. Aaron, who was supposed to be this really righteous guy. I guess it just goes to show that everyone messes up sometimes, and sometimes even prophets will mess up big time, like with Aaron and the calf. It doesn't mean that God should be mistrusted because of the occasional mistake made by those who represent him. I'm not familiar with every case of LDS prophets making mistakes, but I'm sure that this principle can apply most of the time. I don't blindly follow everything that the prophets say; I just happen to agree with the vast majority of it. If I ever come across something that the prophets have taught which I do not agree with What I do is pray to God about it. Usually the answer to these sort of prayers is to be at peace and to not worry about it because even though it doesn't make sense to me there's a reason behind everything.


So you tell me that you follow someone who you don't fully agree with, and that God simply tells you "don't worry about it" instead of actually giving you an answer. I'm sorry, but I just have trouble accepting that, seeing as in my relationship with God, I've received answers instead of cop-outs. It might also interest you to remember that Aaron was not the Prophet, Moses was. It is also in scripture that if a Prophecy is made in God's name that does not come true, that the prophet is to be written off as a liar. Also, using religion to guide life also goes against what Christ taught. Look at how Jesus talked to the Pharisees. The Pharisees treated religion as the guide and law of life, instead of recognizing as God Himself being the one who made them holy. Jesus told people to turn to God for forgiveness, to accept the work that God did in their lives, not to think that one is worthy because of what they do. If you have something in scripture to prove me wrong, go ahead and bring it out. If we are truly fellow Christians, than we should agree that scripture is better than opinions for correcting what is wrong in the faith.


Sorry, wrong terminology. Aaron was a... priest I think... anyways it wasn't a perfect analogy, just something that came to mind.

I think I'm missing the point of your guiding life argument, because I still don't know what you're getting at...

And I already said that I don't care about proving you wrong. I'm on this forum because I think it's fun to share my opinions and hear what other people have to say. I've found this whole conversation very interesting, but if it's going to change into a serious prove-this-or-that debate then I'd rather just do the homework I've been procrastinating all week. I don't see why I should put so much of my energy into something which is neither enjoyable or productive. I'm sure there are plenty other mormons on this thread who love to trade facts and quotes and what not, but it just seems like work to me.

. . . I'm used to being lazy, so I don't know if that all sounded inconsiderate or anything . . .
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Neophenx de Chrysalya

What I don't understand is that if a Mormon argues that only God makes someone holy, then what is the reason for the massive importance of being 'temple worthy' to be a full member of the church, if God Himself is the one who decides who gets in?


I think it may hearken back to Jewish tradition, although knowing Joseph Smith he probably didn't plan it that way. Jewish temples were fairly particular on who they let into the inner sanctum and I don't recall if anyone could go behind the sacred curtain.

Also, I don't know that the Bible says God restricts anyone from being a member of the Church, just from getting into Heaven.
cephastwin
There was a Mormon temple built near where I lived. They opened it up for tours then tour out all of the carpet and replaced it because non-Mormons had walked on it. WTF?


what temple are you near that they would do that? I grew up lds/mormon, even when they rebuilt the one in illinois they didnt do that. rolleyes think someone is pulling your leg... Southern Baptist/agnostic now btw
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I am saying that they are Christians for the very same reason all Christians are Christians. Because they claim they are Christians. They have explanations for the differences in their beliefs just like every other Christian religion has explanations for their differences. Essencially they all believe in the teachings of Christ and in Christ's attonement. The rest is inconsequential, at least to an outside observer like myself. I think you're all equally crazy emotion_awesome

I'm currently dating a Mormon. I myself do not believe in any LDS doctrine or adhere to any of their unique rules. I think that Joseph Smith deceived a great many people in the creation of his organization. If, in theory, I claimed that I was Mormon, in spite of not believing any of what they believe, would I be a Mormon? Would I be able to get married in the temple and appease the inlaws just because I said I was one? And by extension, would I be able to say the same thing about all of my other family members who might want to attend the ceremony?

Doofi3
They require two years of missionary work just to be a full member in their Church... sounds fairly dedicated to Christ's call to witnessing. They accept and embrace people of all races, sexual orientations, and religious backgrounds (sounds like Jesus of Nazareth to me) They are open to discussion and debate (again, sounds like Jesus). They know the Bible better than most other Christians I know (once more, sounds like Christ and his teachings). They seem to be (at least from my own experience) generally kind and helpful people due to their religious teachings.

Some of the things you've said really make me scratch my head. LDS members accept and embrace people of all races, sexual orientations and religious backgrounds? Even if we were to ignore the racist overtones of the church in the past or its history of calling all other churches corrupt, something that I've still seen permeating through the church today is a huge aversion towards accepting sexual orientation that isn't hetero. I have a Mormon friend who is bi and she's only now finally beginning to accept the way she is because in the past she's been taught how wrong it is. I had a Mormon classmate in my leadership course who was EXTREMELY vocal about not wanting to have to see homosexuals together in public and having to explain it to his children. And just look at the funding the church did for prop 8. How do you see such thing as embracing of them at all?

Granted, I also know some members who think that the orientation rules are stupid and old-fashioned. I myself would not be surprised if the church changes them "through revelation" at some point either. But what has the leadership been saying and teaching on the matter? That it's wrong and acting on it must be avoided at all costs.

keito-ninja
As I just mentioned above, one of the reasons that I don't like explaining why I have such a strong testimony is because I'm very bad at it. All I can ever come up with to say is just a bunch of vague wish wash that sounds weak even to me. I know what I believe, and I know why I believe it, but I don't know how to help other people understand why I believe it.

keito-ninja
I suppose I could go on, but the basic point is that it "feels" true to me. I don't know whether anyone else can consider that "evidence".

I think to an extent I do understand why you believe what you do, and it more or less is summed up in the other part that I quoted from you. The thing is, I also understand that there are an abundance of other faiths out there that make similar claims to feeling something about "the truth," and therefore believing it's true. The conflicting claims based on the same kind of feeling is what makes it subjective to me, and is also why I can't personally consider it evidence. I think the actual part that you have a hard time explaining to us (and perhaps to yourself) is why you DO personally consider it evidence.

Additionally, have you ever had feelings about anything that turned out to be wrong later? Are your feelings about religious matters exempt from that kind of error? If so, do you know they are by the same feeling that tells you they're true in the first place?
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GoldDiggingWhore
Some of the things you've said really make me scratch my head. LDS members accept and embrace people of all races, sexual orientations and religious backgrounds? Even if we were to ignore the racist overtones of the church in the past or its history of calling all other churches corrupt, something that I've still seen permeating through the church today is a huge aversion towards accepting sexual orientation that isn't hetero. I have a Mormon friend who is bi and she's only now finally beginning to accept the way she is because in the past she's been taught how wrong it is. I had a Mormon classmate in my leadership course who was EXTREMELY vocal about not wanting to have to see homosexuals together in public and having to explain it to his children. And just look at the funding the church did for prop 8. How do you see such thing as embracing of them at all?

Granted, I also know some members who think that the orientation rules are stupid and old-fashioned. I myself would not be surprised if the church changes them "through revelation" at some point either. But what has the leadership been saying and teaching on the matter? That it's wrong and acting on it must be avoided at all costs.


Hm, maybe I've just known some very liberal Mormons. I do live in California after all.

You are correct though, reading back over my own post I do see I sound pretty dumb, lol. At least in terms of how the Church started out, they were very intolerant. Still, I think they've come a long way (not that I have anything other than personal evidence to back that theory up though sweatdrop )
Doofi3
GoldDiggingWhore
Some of the things you've said really make me scratch my head. LDS members accept and embrace people of all races, sexual orientations and religious backgrounds? Even if we were to ignore the racist overtones of the church in the past or its history of calling all other churches corrupt, something that I've still seen permeating through the church today is a huge aversion towards accepting sexual orientation that isn't hetero. I have a Mormon friend who is bi and she's only now finally beginning to accept the way she is because in the past she's been taught how wrong it is. I had a Mormon classmate in my leadership course who was EXTREMELY vocal about not wanting to have to see homosexuals together in public and having to explain it to his children. And just look at the funding the church did for prop 8. How do you see such thing as embracing of them at all?

Granted, I also know some members who think that the orientation rules are stupid and old-fashioned. I myself would not be surprised if the church changes them "through revelation" at some point either. But what has the leadership been saying and teaching on the matter? That it's wrong and acting on it must be avoided at all costs.


Hm, maybe I've just known some very liberal Mormons. I do live in California after all.

You are correct though, reading back over my own post I do see I sound pretty dumb, lol. At least in terms of how the Church started out, they were very intolerant. Still, I think they've come a long way (not that I have anything other than personal evidence to back that theory up though sweatdrop )


sweatdrop The church was officially organized in 1830... blacks of african descent(whatever that means) were not allowed to be members of their priesthood until the late 70s.. almost 150 tears,,,
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Chris_Ffolger

sweatdrop The church was officially organized in 1830... blacks of african descent(whatever that means) were not allowed to be members of their priesthood until the late 70s.. almost 150 tears,,,


Ok, but how long were blacks and other racial groups oppressed under other forms of Christianity? MUCH longer than 150 years... the Mormon church sure seems to be much more progressive to me, or at least more adaptive.

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