(Continued from page 398)
Apart from the clear fact that Scripture predicted that Judas would make the choice to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver, the disciples performed miracles in the power of the Holy Spirit but certainly did not yet have 'all truth' (John 16:13) at the time Judas betrayed Jesus, for the Spirit was to come after Jesus' Resurrection and Ascension to bring His disciples into 'all truth' (John 16:7: 7 'But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counsellor [the Holy Spirit] will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you'). So your conclusion is still consistent with the Mormon view: 'I am completely unable to prove it'
We know that there were many things that the disciples did not yet understand and you only had to read a little further from this reference to find an example (John 16:16-18):
JN 16:16 "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me." JN 16:17 Some of his disciples said to one another, "What does he mean by saying, `In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,' and `Because I am going to the Father'?" 18 They kept asking, "What does he mean by 'a little while'? We don't understand what he is saying."
There are errors in the Bible!
'Whether anyone is entitled to hold their opinion depends entirely on the facts they introduce to support that opinion!'
You write: Just as a reminder of the christian faiths, thw Word of God happens to be Jesus Christ himself, not words in a book that man has decided to chop & change to his own meanings.
TCE: Once again you have chosen to make up your own definition despite all the evidence we have supplied to the contrary! There are at least 46 references to the 'word of God' in the Bible, many of them appearing in Old Testament quotations before Jesus was revealed as the source of 'the Word' (in John 1:1 and Revelation 19:13) and therefore showing Him to be Eternal as the Father is Eternal:
1 Samuel 9:27 As they were going down to the outskirts of the city, Samuel said to Saul, "Tell the servant to pass on before us, and when he has passed on stop here yourself for a while, that I may make known to you the word of God."
1 Kings 12:22 But the word of God came to Shemaiah the man of God:
Proverbs 30:5 Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
Matthew 15:6 So, for the sake of your tradition, you have made void the word of God.
Mark 7:13 thus making void the word of God through your tradition which you hand on. And many such things you do."
Revelation 19:13 He is clad in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.
You have been utterly unable to refute the information we have already supplied by which we proved the reliability of the Bible, the Word of God, and therefore making reference to 'words in a book that man has decided to chop & change to his own meanings' is clearly ignorant.
You write: Sorry but i don't agree with you, one of the things in the bible is it says that the holy spirit is the teacher. If you ask your teachers name at school they would declare it as Miss Havisham, or Miss Smith. The holy spirit gives his name to his existence which is described in Galatians, clear simple & irrefutable. Lets call it a day, you believe in what you want to believe in and i'll believe in what i wish to believe in, this is all human pergotive. I don't know what bible you are even reading from, i've heard many Jehovahs Witnesses declare there bible to be the same as other King James versions, but at first hand i have read & compared these so called same bibles & it is ultimately different from meaning in one scripture to another. Good luck with talking to others, i for one have lost interest in our conversations.
TCE: 'The holy spirit gives his name to his existence which is described in Galatians, clear simple & irrefutable'? Again, you are inventing your own definitions! Nowhere in Galatians do we ever read that the Holy Spirit 'gives his name to his existence'!
Finally, you excel yourself in comparing the New World Translation of the cult of Jehovah's Witnesses with the King James Version, compounding this with the error of believing that uninspired human translators are incapable of error. The New World Translation is a deliberately mistranslated version designed to support the false doctrines of the Jehovah's Witnesses while the King James Version has a few minor errors (not counting errors by some printers in the early versions) despite the excellent (human) qualifications of those put to the task by the heinous monarch, James.
Anyone comparing direct translations which avoid errors such as paraphrasing and theological bias, as far as possible, will find no significant differences at all! The best modern translation is the New American Standard Bible Translation, but many excellent versions have been produced over the last 400 years, including the King James Version (which was really a revision of the Bishops Bible), the RSV, and the NIV.
The small differences between these versions can be accounted for by slightly variable factors, such as the manuscripts available for the translators (even more manuscript evidence is available today than was at the disposal of the KJV translators), the ability and theology of the translators, and their choice of words. The Elizabethan language of the KJV is beautiful, but obsolete today. There is another factor not often appreciated - the meaning of words changes with time and many of the words used by the KJV translators have a different meaning today! Of course, you can get past this problem by going back to the original languages and discovering the true meaning of the words in the time in which they were written - which is exactly what the translators of the NASB aimed for in their translation!
Even with the extremes of the NWT and KJV that you claim to have 'read & compared', and allowing for the often outrageous mis-translations in the New World Translation, for you to suggest that 'these so called same bibles [are] ultimately different from meaning in one scripture to another' is ludicrous and can be disproved in a matter of minutes! The Mormon training you received persuaded you to reject the accuracy of the Bible without evidence, and you still have not been able to bring one jot of evidence to support your claims! As you should have read (at http://www.thechristianexpositor.org/page52.html ), we can claim phenomenal accuracy for the Bible and you have clearly failed to answer a single question raised against your beliefs.
This will raise obvious questions in the minds of those sincerely seeking the truth, as will your inability to dialogue or reason, and we therefore close leaving no stone unturned!
Sincerely in the Lord Jesus Christ
We heard nothing more from Shelley …
Hopefully, anyone reading these pages will easily recognise the nature of the Mormon Church, officially the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which has attempted to present itself as an orthodox Christian denomination in recent years. Many in the general public view the church in this way, particularly in the USA where they are accustomed to seeing TV advertisements or those in the Readers Digest, portraying closely-knit families who worship together and uphold 'traditional values.' The worldwide influence of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has also played a part in lulling the Christian Church into even more apathy than is usual in these End-Times!
This is very different from the origins of Joseph Smith's vehicle for personal advancement! A little over one hundred and fifty years ago things were very different and Mormonism was a classic example of one kind of life-or-death struggle in the history of the pioneers who built the USA. In 1844 the founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith, died in a blazing gun battle, amid circumstances that threatened to pit the armed Mormon militia of Nauvoo against forces from surrounding towns and neighbouring states over the issues of polygamy and the church's temporal power. A large influence that brought about that gun-battle was the Mormon militia's destruction of the free-press of 'The Nauvoo Expositor' (whose name and role partially inspired the name of this website!) after they dared to expose the true nature of the 'prophet' Smith.
To avoid further open conflict - and because of the considerable retaliatory action by non-Mormons who objected to the cults' violent ways and their claims that Zion was to be built there - Brigham Young led a migration westward (in 1846), only to be threatened again by the US government in the mid-1850s because of their continuation of the very doctrines that led them into conflict in the first place. The United States Army was actually advancing on Utah to use force, if necessary, to replace Brigham Young as territorial governor. Although the Utah militia did not engage the army, they were responsible for the death of 132 non-Mormons (killed by Mormons and their 'scapegoat' Indian allies) in the infamous Mountain Meadows Massacre in 1857 which was at least partially triggered by the adulterous, polygamous activity of one of their 'apostles,' Parley Parker Pratt, who was shot by an enraged Arkansas 'Gentile' (Hector McLean) after Pratt was acquitted of adultery and abduction of the man's wife and child! In Utah, Pratt was mourned as a martyr and his death increased the anger against the 'Gentiles' so that a relatively defenceless wagon-train became the target for the revenge attack by Mormon Bishop John D. Lee who led the 'Danites' ('Avenging Angels') - and was subsequently the only man tried and executed by the State for this crime. Such activity continued to such an extent that, in 1889, Mormon leaders were fugitives from justice, operating underground after the United States Congress declared them outlaws and dissolved the LDS Church corporation, seizing its property through the anti-polygamy Edmunds-Tucker Act of 1887.
In 1890 Congress was drafting legislation to disenfranchise all Mormons in the United States, but relented when Church President Wilford Woodruff issued a 'Manifesto' instructing believers to obey the law of the land rather than continue the practice of polygamy. This move was nothing more than a political ruse and was never declared to be a 'revelation' from the Mormon god, but it ended much of the anti-Mormon hostility and opened the way for Utah's admission to the Union. Although the leaders continued to practice their doctrines as before, the 'Manifesto' was successful in beginning the long and largely successful campaign to rehabilitate the church's tarnished public image.
The contemporary Mormon Church presents a mask of monotheism that has fooled some in Christian denominations, e.g. former President Jimmy Carter (who has also been sucked in by pro-Palestinian, anti-Semitic, Islamic propaganda). LDS theology is still polytheistic for the changes have been chiefly cosmetic for public consumption and, as pointed out in these e-mails, polygamy remains in their Doctrine and Covenants (Section 132) as an 'everlasting covenant'! So, although Mormon men are required to obey the law and limit themselves to one wife, their 'Scripture' still shows their god's absolute seal on plural marriage!
Although Jesus Christ is presented as their 'Saviour' and given prominence in Mormon worship, this is not the same Jesus Christ known to Bible-believing Christians (as Paul warned: 2 Corinthians 11v4). As we have seen in the discussion on 'grace', many other familiar-sounding names and words take on different meanings for those fully initiated into LDS beliefs. The sacred and secret rites performed in Mormon temples are guarded strictly and off limits to outsiders ('Gentiles'), and are even off limits to members who have not qualified for a 'temple recommend' from their 'bishop'.
Few outsiders are aware of the 'temple garments' that temple Mormons wear constantly underneath ordinary street clothes - and which are attributed with wondrous protective abilities that have supposedly saved lives in dire circumstances. Mormonism is therefore more than 'a wolf in sheep's clothing' (Matthew 7:15), but also a 'pseudo-Christianity' in 'pseudo-Masonic' clothing!
The Mormons have grown slowly by degrees from around a handful of Smith's family and friends (1830), to 200 thousand members (1890) and, in leaps and bounds, to over 10 million strong today, worldwide. Those who become 'inactive' (a condition admitted by Shelley) remain on their records until they strongly seek removal ('dis-fellowshipping'), or commit a serious sin that might cause the hierarchy to seek their repentance or removal from the church (rarely heard of in the UK). Brigham Young University projects that there will be more than 265 million Mormons by A.D. 2080, if the present growth rate continues. Polygamous marriage was discontinued about a century ago in mainstream Mormonism (it is the polygamous offshoots that make it to TV exposés - often with the violent undertones that marked the original in the days of Smith and Young), so conversions must account for an appreciable amount of the increase, both past and projected. Advertising is clearly effective for the LDS, as are the visits by pairs of young missionaries who give up 2-years of their lives to cycle, with carefully prepared presentations, to your door in many countries worldwide.
Despite the supposed accuracy of the Book of Mormon these missionaries open the King James Version of the Bible with the naïve and ignorant householder to persuade potential converts that dozens of citations 'prove' all other churches false and reveal the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints as the 'restoration' of Christ's true church on earth today. As shown briefly, in the e-mails and through material presented on our other pages, these claims are easily refuted by those conversant with the Bible and the facts!