Wednesday, September 12

A Mormon Rebuke

I have been rebuked, accused of not doing enough research when I wrote the post Hitler And Princess Diana Baptised As Mormons.

The rebuke is from someone whom, I presume, is a Mormon though doesn't give his or her name. Instead of defending the post and entering into an argument I decided I would publish the complaint in full and unedited.

Always willing to give an opposing view to my own. Enough of a preliminary, see how you view what follows:

1- Everyone that has ever lived experiences an afterlife in the LDS* world view. The immediate afterlife arrived at once a person dies is the Spirit World, a temporary place where the good wait in Paradise and the wicked wait in Prison for the eventual resurrection of the body, which everyone will able to experience. In Mormonism, baptism by a person with authority (other denominations are seen as not having the proper authority) is a prerequisite for salvation in the Celestial Kingdom, the presence of the Heavenly Father. Those who are never baptized receive a lesser kingdom or are cast into Outer Darkness, depending on their actions and whether or not they accept Christ's Atonement (which they still have the opportunity to do after they die). Vicarious baptism for the dead, a practice that existed within the primitive Christian church (as attested by 1 Corinthians and the Shepherd of Hermas), is offered to those who never had the opportunity to receive it in life. The dead can accept or reject the offer once it is extended; labeling those that have had the work done for them as Mormons is incorrect if we cannot know their reply.

2- Within the context of Mormonism, Joseph Smith** was not 'wrong' for re-instituting polygamy, nor was the Church 'wrong' for eventually ending the practice. Monogamy is given as the standard marriage form for members to observe within the Book of Mormon, but the text also mentions that God has the choice to allow polygamy at times when He feels it would be the better principle, as was the case in the time of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Likewise, Joseph Smith was commanded to revive polygamy in his day, and later Wilford Woodruff was commanded to suspend it for the time being. And since the subject interests you, there are smaller figures for the number of women married to Joseph during his life time (and after he died), and many researchers rely on statements made by Joseph's enemies that are of questionable authenticity.

3- "Stand in brides and grooms" implies that vicarious marriages are made for couples. A valid sealing for a dead person requires that the person they are being sealed to is already alive, and since Woodruff policy requires that the people being sealed were married while alive. Members of both genders can indeed be sealed to multiple spouses, but only if the person that's still alive was widowed.

An understanding of baptism for the dead and the importance of marriage in Mormonism requires being familiar with the concept of sealing, by which families are able to continue on into the next life.

My asterisks:
* Latter Day Saint
** Publisher of the Book of Mormon

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  1. "Those who are never baptized receive a lesser kingdom or are cast into Outer Darkness, depending on their actions and whether or not they accept Christ's Atonement" That sounds very much like a religion controlling and frightening people. Why would good people of other religions recieve a lesser kingdom? It's what I don't like about many of religions.

  2. Paradise versus prison, a lesser kingdom...I'm with Suzie. And sorry, but the polygamy angle was always something that benefited men. What's truly frightening to me is that one of our presidential candidates follows this religion.

  3. shouldnt worry about this rebuke its typical of religion. why would someone get a better part of the afterlife because he was a mormon which i think was made up by a man

  4. While I don't want to insult anyone here, I will say that the Bible clearly states: "do not add to or take away from this book". Different versions have it written in different text, but they all basically say the same thing.

    The Book of Mormon as an addition is a violation of this command and I have yet to see a viable explanation that justifies the addition.

    Scott McMan

  5. "Best to stay away from religion and go for the dreaming - the most powerful religion of them all".
    Paul Cox
    from "Paul Cox:Tales from the Cancer Ward."

    Most religions are just means for men to control other men."God" gave you a brain to think for yourself.When someone shows me a book passage written by another man and tells me "God" wrote it,so it must be true,that is one of the most stupid thought controlled arguments I have ever heard.
    No wonder the Indigenous peoples never wrote stuff down and passed info on through speech alone.
    I'll stick with the life experience "God" shows me and use the brain and heart "God" gave me,and think for myself.
    Life is too short to be arguing over some passage in a book that some "man" wrote.
    I sat down about twenty years ago and read the bible from cover to cover,and it cured me of ever taking religions of the world seriously again,because the brain "God" gave me to think with thought as a whole this book is so contradictory that it just doesn't make any sense.Sure you can cherry-pick some nice verses,allegories and wise sayings from it,but at the end of the day the only thing from stopping the faithful from seeing it for what it is,is fear.
    Religion's most potent weapon.
    And religions biggest fear is that men will think things through with the brain "God" gave them.

    Instead of relying so much on the book "God" gave you,why don't you try using the mind and the life "God" gave you and experience it for yourself ?

  6. Mike,I think it generous and gracious of you to avoid those confrontations that accomplish little satisfaction.

    We each have a journey that gives us the choice of reality: past, present, and future. Judging one another is simply a means to set our own standards as superior and/or accurate. But is that truth? Here again, it is the individual's choice... the individual's truth.

    I myself feel loved by the one called, the "Father of spirits" (Hebrews 12:9), and that is my choice. Sure I could add "what" I believe but I do not consider myself a teacher of belief. Until then I learn and allow myself to be filled with joy in understanding.

    Then again, I've always promoted "The Golden Rule," as it's often referred to: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." I found that this one sentence is written in some nine different religious manuscripts... in nine different religions.

    PS - Wonder why Eva and Hitler weren't baptised at the same time? Could it have been that he gave too much at the office? Hmm?

  7. Thank you for all of your comments: Suzie, Trish, Tom, Scott, Darren, Dixie. I am purposely not adding my own views (at least at this time).