Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Mormon Claims About Poor Transmission Are False

One of the lies by Joseph Smith was about the Bible and why no one could trust it.  The following is recorded in the History of the Church 6:57:

I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers. Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors.

In the previous article I posted, by Bill McKeever of Mormonism Research Ministry, McKeever addressed these claims.  However, on the issue of transmission of the Scriptures through history, it is important to note that, contrary to LDS claims, we have plenty of evidence demonstrating how very little has changed from the earliest manuscripts to the latest ones.  The transmission has been very accurate.

Mormonism Research Ministry recently published the article, “What a charred lump of a 2,000-year-old scroll can tell us about Mormonism.”  Written by Sharon Lindbloom, the article definitely destroys the LDS claims against the accuracy of the Bible.

In June of 1843 Mormonism’s founder, the Prophet Joseph Smith, told his followers,

“There are many things in the Bible which do not, as they now stand, accord with the revelations of the Holy Ghost to me.” (Jo­seph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 310. See also History of the Church 5:425)

Four months later, in another sermon, Joseph Smith explained,

“I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers. Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors.” (History of the Church 6:57)

This view of a corrupted Bible has been accepted and perpetuated throughout the history of Mormonism. The Church’s 8th Article of Faith (written by Joseph Smith) clearly states that Mormons believe the Bible to be the Word of God–with a caveat: “as far as it is translated correctly.” An LDS scholar clarified,

“Here the word trans­lated appears to be used in a broader sense to mean transmitted, which would include not only translation of languages but also copying, editing, deleting from, and adding to documents. The Bible has undergone a much more serious change than merely translation from one language to another.” (BYU Professor Robert J. Matthews, A Bible! A Bible!, 72. Italics in original).

So, throughout the history of the Mormon Church members have been told that when Joseph Smith’s teachings deviate from biblical doctrine, it is because the text of the Bible has been carelessly transcribed and deliberately falsified (for a refutation of Smith’s assertion see “The Joseph Smith Translation: Inspired by Whom?”). Therefore, an article published this week by the Associated Press is of interest to those concerned with Mormonism.

On Wednesday (21 September 2016) journalist Daniel Estrin reported,

“The charred lump of a 2,000-year-old scroll sat in an Israeli archaeologist’s storeroom for decades, too brittle to open. Now, new imaging technology has revealed what was written inside: the earliest evidence of a biblical text in its standardized form.”

Through the use of digital technology, researchers were able to unwrap (“virtual unwrapping”) the brittle scroll and read the ancient text, finding passages from the book of Leviticus.

“The text discovered in the charred Ein Gedi scroll is ‘100 percent identical’ to the version of the Book of Leviticus that has been in use for centuries, said Dead Sea Scroll scholar Emmanuel Tov from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, who participated in the study.

“‘This is quite amazing for us,’ he said. ‘In 2,000 years, this text has not changed.’”

Continue reading at Mormonism Research Ministry.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

The "Inspired" Version Bible

The Joseph Smith Translation: Inspired by Whom?
By Bill McKeever

A commendable student of the Bible tries hard to understand a text in the way the author meant his words to be understood. His desire is to comprehend with as much precision as possible, the intent of the author. False teachers have no such intentions. Instead, they want to read into a passage ideas they feel already support their currently held positions. However, only the worst of false teachers would dare to be so bold as to actually change the verse or verses in order to promote their heretical viewpoints.  Joseph Smith certainly falls into the latter category.

Joseph Smith’s 1833 version of the Bible has also been called the “Inspired Version.” Mormon apologists don’t even try to hide the fact that Smith needed neither manuscripts to be translated from, nor knowledge of the languages spoken by the ancient writers themselves. For many proponents of Smith, it is enough that he was inspired of God and was enabled with modern revelation to make the necessary “corrections” to the Bible. BYU Professor Robert L. Millet stated,

“The Prophet translated the King James Bible by the same means he translated the Book of Mormon—through revelation. His knowledge of Hebrew or Greek or his acquaintance with ancient documents was no more essential in making the JST than a previous knowledge of Reformed Egyptian or an access to more primitive Nephite records was essential to the translation of the Book of Mormon” (The Joseph Smith Translation: The Restoration of Plain and Precious Things, pp.26–27).

On October 15, 1843, Joseph Smith delivered a sermon in which he declared, “I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers. Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors” (History of the Church 6:57). As we can see, he breaks down his complaint into three categories, 1) ignorant translators, 2) careless transcribers, and 3) corrupt priests. Let us briefly examine this claim.

Continue reading at Mormonism Research Ministry  — but you’ll love the conclusion:

The irony in Smith’s accusation is that he seems to be describing himself! When he took it upon himself to revise the Bible in 1830 he had no expertise in ancient languages. Would this not make him an “ignorant translator?” And if we find a pattern of Smith making alterations that conflicted with ancient texts, while at the same time supporting his presently held views, would that not also make him both designing and corrupt? . . . 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Mormons Are Divinity

The following are excerpts from an official LDS proclamation about the family.

The First Presidency and Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

ALL HUMAN BEINGS—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny.

IN THE PREMORTAL REALM, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshipped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life.

Now, all of us who study Mormonism know they believe that men can become gods (sorry ladies, you’re just a goddess due to marriage to your god husband), but not too many of the average people on the street knows this.  Nor does the average person understand about Mormon pre-mortal theology. 

These two paragraphs plainly demonstrate that Mormons believe all people (and all angels, as well as Jesus) are brothers and sisters in the pre-mortal existence, and that they have a divine nature which will help them to become gods in the afterlife.

Of course none of this is biblical, and the god they are children of is a false, non-existent god which Joseph Smith made up out of his wild imagination.  This is another bit of evidence proving that the LDS is not a Christian church.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Historic Incidents

I came across this unsanitized report of historical events in Mormonism, which proves that they are NOT a Christian church and never have been.  Remember when you read this article, that it comes from a secular source, with no concern about doctrine.

Here are the ten events they report:

Joseph Smith’s being tarred, feathered and nearly castrated for having an affair with a 16-year old.

The threats by the Mormon Church against the lives of dissenters.

The war between Mormons and Missourians; this covers six separate items.

Joseph Smith’s “jail break.”

The Mormon oath of vengeance against the USA.

These are incidents that people who study Mormonism are already aware of, but I thought this was a good article to show those unfamiliar with such things just how non-Christian the LDS faith really is.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

A Children’s Game for Brainwashing

Mormonism Research Ministry recently reported on a children’s game for Mormons, found in a children’s magazine.  This game leads children into accepting the LDS works-oriented gospel.  It’s a perfect example of how brainwashing into cult teachings begins at very young ages so that the children will never learn to question what they are taught.

The game is called, “Your Path to Heavenly Father.”  It has a game card listing all the necessary “Steps to Salvation,” as follows:

Premortal life
Get a body
Be baptized
Receive the Holy Ghost
Take the sacrament
Keep the commandments
Go to the temple
Be sealed to your husband or wife
Be resurrected

WOW!  What a horrible burden to place on children, let alone on adults!  Can you imagine the fear instilled in children when they are told they must do the impossible task of keeping the commandments to be saved?

MRM notes that there are some really important things missing here: But what about having faith in Jesus? What about loving Jesus? What about trusting Jesus? Don’t Mormons need Jesus Himself to be saved?

MRM’s article has this damning conclusion:  Isn’t it odd, then, that Jesus is absent from the “Path to Heavenly Father” and the Mormon children’s list of “Steps to Salvation”?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints asserts that Mormonism is a Christian religion. But leaving Christ out of salvation, even in a children’s game, is the sort of omission that makes that LDS claim ring hollow.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The Virtual Deification of Joseph Smith

A couple years ago I posted the article, “Salvation Through Joseph Smith?” which examined a Mormon hymn praising Joseph Smith.  I also cited a quotation from Mormon President Harold B. Lee where he said that no one could accept Jesus as the savior without first accepting Joseph Smith as a prophet.  This statement alone says salvation in the Mormon church is based on Joseph Smith.  

Mormon Research Ministry has an interesting post examining an article by a Mormon blogger denying that Mormons don’t really worship Joseph Smith.  MRM points to LDS doctrine and teachings contradicting the blogger’s claims, and by doing so has some interesting citations.

First thought-provoker for Mormons is the claim that they believe Jesus is the head of their church, yet Doctrine & Covenants 28:6 says that Joseph Smith is the head of their church!

MRM points out:  In 1966 Mormon Apostle Bruce McConkie said that there would be no salvation if it had not been for Joseph Smith. The man who became the tenth LDS President, Joseph Fielding Smith, taught that one must accept Joseph Smith in order to enter the kingdom of God, and early Mormon prophet Brigham Young claimed that no man or woman will ever enter the “mansion where God and Christ are” without the “consent” and “certificate of Joseph Smith” as their “passport” (respectively, Mormon Doctrine, 670; Doctrines of Salvation, 1:189-90; Journal of Discourses 7:289).

While the blogger claims that Smith doesn’t have the power to raise the dead,  Brigham Young taught that Joseph “will stand at the head of the resurrection in this last dispensation” and, holding the keys of resurrection, “will seal this authority on others” who will find their friends and resurrect them (Discourses of Brigham Young, 116).

When the blogger claims that the LDS do not place Smith on the same level as Christ, MRM responds,  in 1922 an LDS Church lesson taught that there are at least nine parallels between the lives of Joseph Smith and Jesus Christ. After listing them side-by-side, the lesson concluded, “Who shall doubt the divine mission of these Saviours of mankind?” (Weber Stake Ward Teachers’ Lesson, January 1922).

Throughout the history of the LDS, their leaders have indeed virtually deified Joseph Smith by claiming for him attributes which only apply to the real Jesus of the Bible.  Even the LDS blogger admitted to the statement in D&C 135 which says, Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it.

When all the evidence is in, it is plain that — as much as they wish to deny it — Joseph Smith is treated like a god, being praised and virtually worshiped in their hymns, doctrines, and presidential proclamations.

And yet they still claim to be Christians.  A more appropriate name for them would be “Smithians.”

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Question for Mormons

Black skin was given as a mark of those people who were not valiant in the spiritual realm, and this black skin supposedly is a mark of who cannot hold a Mormon priesthood.  Since the LDS received a revelation from God to begin allowing blacks the priesthood, how come their skin is still black?