LDS, history and Gods mercy

I have some really close friends who are LDS, and often we talk about our beliefs. Recently we’ve been discussing the Great Apostasy (she suggested I read the book by James Talmage), and I remarked that their own church must’ve gone through an apostasy b/c of all the many sects that broke off of Smith and the doctrinal changes. She replied that God would have smitten Smith if he attempted to lead the Saints wrongly, and He would do the same to any of their leaders, God would smite them first if they were false. This caught me completely off guard! After all, if that’s how God operated, why did he allow the Catholic Church to grow, put together the canon of the bible and distribute it throughout the world through missionaries if the church had completely apostatized? Wouldn’t God have completely blown the Church off the face of the planet then for teaching apostate doctrines? Why would God allow the Christian faith to grow so abundantly for hundreds of years if it was so utterly opposed to his real doctrines, which the LDS claim to teach? And what about Gods mercy? How is God merciful if he allowed false doctrines to become established throughout the world, leading millions of people to ignorantly worship a different God through false doctrines, only then to decide to raise up a new prophet to correct everyone and then threaten damnation and death if he were to falsely lead the people? I’m not trying to be disrespectful to LDS believers, but this one statement opened up a whole new can of worms for me! God is SO different, how do you reconcile the two completely different natures of God? Because if you’re LDS, and Christs church (Catholic) completely apostatized, then God was indifferent and silent until 1820 (when Smith had his “vision”). Now God is finally responding to the “abominable” doctrines and setting the record straight, and He’s not gonna mess around anymore, you jump out of line, He’s going to smite you. In my mind, there’s this big, fat, black line separating the different natures of God in history. If you are LDS, how do you justify God and history? Wouldn’t the very nature of Gods different attitudes raise suspicions? And, while I’m asking, how does your church explain such a long time difference between dispensations? Not even in the OT or the BOM was there such a long gap between dispensations.

Wouldn’t Smith being killed be considered “smiting”?

Wouldn’t his children dying at a young age also be considered “smiting” Smith?

Have her try those on for size, but, Warren Jeffs, and several of his upper echelon followers are being smited, with prison time. (FLDS)

Just sayin…:shrug:

Let’s see…the arrests, the being chased from home and family, the tarring and feathering, the conviction for being a conman, and his killing…just to name a few…

sounds like a LOT of smiting…

Lol, I did mention Smith being “smitten” for practicing polygamy and polyandry. To which she didn’t respond (via text) for a good hour and a half. She finally responded with the typical response, Smith was minunderstood and persecuted for having a vision and telling people about it, and she didn’t care about the polygamy or polyandry. I can tell when I’ve gone a little too far when the brick wall goes up, and I try to never push, their friendship means a lot to me and I know that the only way they will ever listen to me is through love and patience. At least now she knows what polyandry is!

Just curious, which book by James Talmage did she recommend?

I am curious as to why God allowed his Church to be in error for 1500 years?

Interestingly, Mormons can’t say exactly when the apostasy happened. It just happened “after the apostles died.” So I guess Polycarp didn’t have a good understanding of what John taught? The Early Church Fathers changed practically everything the Apostles taught in a coordinated way? So either they got it right or they all schemed to change everything together long before the Council of Nicea. When I was in early morning seminary and BYU religion classes, I was taught that gnosticism infiltrated the early Christian church and caused it to go into apostasy. Fast forward years later in RCIA, I learned that gnosticism was one of the many heresies that the ECF taught against and worked hard to eradicate in the early church. There was no apostasy, and Joseph Smith was certain neither the first nor last to claim that there was an apostasy.

Jesus said in Matthew 16:18, “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” So was Jesus lying?

Trust me, she does care about the polygamy and polyandry. She just has a hard time dealing with it and won’t talk about it. As a woman who was born and raised in the LDS church, polygamy was ALWAYS a doctrine that bothered me immensely. I know it bothers my True Believing Mormon mother and sisters. I hope it helps to get them out as well. It was also something that, as a woman, you couldn’t really talk about. Polygamy and the temple covenants teach that women are inherently unequal. It bothers more women than you realize. They simply comfort themselves by telling themselves that heavenly father would never require THEIR husbands to practice polygamy in the celestial kingdom. The polyandry is less well known, along with the fact that Joseph Smith took the majority of his additional “wives” behind Emma’s back. This is ultimately what got me out of the LDS church. God would never command one of His prophets to steal another man’s wife. It may not seem like it now, but you are making a difference.

The Great Apostasy, James E. Talmage.

I read that book when I was Mormon. I thought it hard to swallow even when I was LDS

The Mormon “Great Apostasy” is a conspiracy theory.

Whatever happened to tarring and feathering? :smiley:

The Great Apostasy is filled with hateful anti-Catholic rhetoric. It’s just part of the puzzle of where LDS get their misleading and ugly understanding and attitude toward Catholicism.

Just curious, what is “early morning seminary?”

I agree, I got about 3 chapters into it before I decided it was not worth my time and attention, it was simply anti-Catholic propaganda disguised as a “scholarly historical work”. It’s not objective at all, it’s completely biased and the only message I was getting was “I hate Roman Catholicism, this is why you should too”. I am disappointed that the LDS church encourages its missionaries and members to read this book as “proof” of a great apostasy. And it’s quite the double standard! I mention one, historical fact about Smith that puts him in a bad light and suddently he’s “misunderstood and persecuted” but apparently its okay to read “authoritative” and “scholarly” books degrading the Catholic Church, but it must all be true b/c Talmage said so (and he’s not even a historian) :shrug:

Why didn’t the Mormon God smite those many Mormons, including Joseph Smith’s own family, who refused to follow Brigham Young? Mormons seem to assume, because the Salt Lake Mormons grew into the largest LDS group, that they must be the true LDS.

By that same logic, the Catholic Church, as the largest Christian Church by far, must be the true Christian Church. (If not for the Great Apostasy.)

I call it the mmmmmm’s

Misunderstood,
Misquoted,
Misinformed
Mistranslated

See where I’m going with this?

All of these, and more, are stereotypical responses from mormons on the ropes.

HIgh school students take what is called “seminary”—four year course.

Early morning seminary are for those who meet every day before school starts for four years. This is outside the Mormon Corridor

In Ut, Mormon teenagers got (if what I call is correct), I think it was called, released time and would go to seminary classes off their high school property…

When I was a teenager we attended seminary in the ward house prior to church once a week…

I find this an interesting question and fairly valid. The comment in question stems from the LDS belief that God will not lead his church astray. The corollary to it is that God will not permit the prophet and president of the LDS church to lead the members astray. The step beyond that, is the belief that the prophet, when acting in an official capacity, will say nothing bout the words of God. For some members this rhetoric can be carried down to Bishops or any church leader.

It seems I have seen a form of the belief on this board (correct me if I’m wrong). For Catholics it is simply taken back in time to Jesus Christ. It goes: once Christ established the true church, God would never permit it to be lead astray. Since God would never lead his church astray the Catholic church is the church of God.

I believe both these statements are wrong to some extent. The problem is, any church on earth is at some point directed and guided by men. Even a prophet or apostle sometimes speaks his own words, not God’s. This is why the Holy Ghost is so vital. We must use the Spirit to confirm and testify of truth. By this I don’t mean to say anything against organized religion. It can and does lead the sincere follower of Christ to much truth. But at some point we must realize that the men who speak to us filter the words of Christ through their own lens. Even what I say is filtered through my own experience. It is vital then that we go to the source or will forever stumble over others words.

Yes all those mmmm’s. The thing is, the general LDS membership gets their ideas from Talmage, they have been misinformed so naturally they misunderstand Catholicism. Talmage on the other hand was intentional in the hateful misrepresenting of Catholicism, just why did he insist on writing the anti-Catholic diatribe. Why did he feel he needed to tear down the Catholic faith, is there not enough there within his own faith to build members up? It’s a shame, his ugly caricature of Catholicism lives on even among those who have left Mormonism, I’ve read the reverberations of his ugly distortions (and outright lies) on a few e-Mormon sites.

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