Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Sacred Burning

It is not often I start articles on this blog with a quotation from the Book of Mormon, but it suits our purposes to do so here.


Behold I would exhort you that when ye read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men from the creation of Adam even down until the time ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your heart. And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. (Book of Mormon: Moroni 10:3-4)

On more than one occasion in debating with Mormon missionaries (a.k.a. Latter Day Saints) over the worth (or otherwise) of the Book of Mormon, I have been asked to pray unto God and to experience what has become known as the "sacred burning in the bosom" Such a burning, in answer to specific prayer, will bring Heaven's assurance that this little slim blue volume now in my hand really is another Revelation from God, equal to the Bible. This experience is equated by Mormons with God speaking to us in a "still small voice" (1 Nephi 17:45)

Being so urged, especially by two young zealous Mormon missionaries, can put some people on the spot. It just doesn't sound right and yet by refusing to do so, it would appear that they are practically admitting, at least the possibility, that it might just be true.
 

The answer is to refuse to offer up such a prayer and tell the Mormon missionaries the good reasons for your refusal. Here are some very good reasons why you should not go down that particular road:

1) YOU ARE NOT TO TEMPT THE LORD YOUR GOD:
This is exactly what you are doing by asking for an extra revelatory sign from Heaven. God has given you the means by which you can test the spirits (1 John 4:1) i.e. the Scriptures of truth. Take the Mormon doctrines, one by one, and search the Scriptures daily whether these things be so (Acts 17:11) You don't need to look for answers outside the Bible.

2) YOU CHECK OUT THE BOOK OF MORMON BY THE BIBLE:
How do you check out the entire Book of Mormon? You don't. You go to the Index at the back and you look up key doctrines or you ask those Mormon missionaries for their literature which explains their cardinal beliefs and then you subject their doctrines and practices to the teaching of the word of God. If the Book of Mormon is another revelation from God, then it cannot contradict the Bible, because God cannot deny lie (Titus 1:2) or deny Himself (2 Timothy 2:13) It will not take you long to see that the Book of Mormon contradicts the Bible. Here are some glaring examples:

[i] The Bible teaches that salvation is by grace through faith and through nothing we can do (Ephesians 2:8-9/Titus 3:5) The Book of Mormon teaches us that we are saved by grace after all we can do (2 Nephi 25:23) This is what Jude calls "the way of Cain" (v11)

[ii] The main contention of the Book of Mormon is that Jesus Christ visited the American Indians around AD34. 

[iii] As explained also elsewhere, the basis which the Book of Mormon puts forth for believing Nephi who recorded these things is false:


"And now it came to pass that according to our record, and we know that our record to be true, for behold, it was a just man who did keep the record - for he truly did many miracles in the name of Jesus: and there was not any man who could do a miracle in the name of Jesus save he were cleansed every whit from his iniquity-" (3 Nephi 8:1)

This is no basis to believe anyone as the verse below amply proves:

REMEMBER: EVEN FALSE CHRIST'S CAN WORK MIRACLES:

For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many…For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect. Matthew 24:5/24)

3) ALTHOUGH TRUTH IS SOMETHING WHICH MAY BE FELT SUBJECTIVEL, YET WE ARE NEVER COMMANDED TO TEST IT BY OUR FEELINGS:
Jeremiah spoke of the word burning in his bones etc., (20:9) and several spoke of the word of God being sweet to their taste (David/Ezekiel/John etc.,) yet the feelings can be very unreliable things indeed. We are never commanded to let the subjective dictate the objective. What if I get a gut feeling that the Book of Mormon is wrong? Why is my gut feeling inferior to that of the Mormon? Just as I do not reject the Book of Mormon on the basis of a gut feeling (I give solid theological reasons above) then much less am I going to forgo my God given powers of Scriptural discernment to embrace it. Romanists have told me that they enjoy a very special peace just kneeling in front of the mass wafer. If I go into the chapel and experience it for myself, then does this mean then that I must forgo the claims of the Book of Mormon for those of the Roman Catholic Church? And what if I get a whiff of Hare Krishna incense up my nostrils? What then? Or the Charismatic itch or the Toronto Blessing? My feelings could take me from one religion to another ad finitum.

THE MORMONS PARTICULARLY RELY ON THIS METHOD OF BEING SUBJECT TO THE SUBJECTIVE
This may be seen in a reference to a book by an Mormon apologist, Richard I Winwood's book. ("Be Not Take Heed That Ye Be Not Deceived") On p84 he distinctly says:

There are many who would block the way, many who would create a dense fog, that we would lose our way and fall by the wayside. Some will counsel that we cannot depend on spiritual promptings because the Lord will not speak to us in this day. Those who teach such doctrines would mislead and keep others from eternal blessings.

[Editor: It is not that we say that God does not speak to us today. We do believe that He speaks, but He does so through the Bible. We are not counselling folk to go it alone, but rather to test all things by that which is written i.e. in the Bible]

THE MORMON MISSIONARY IS ALSO PARTICULARLY INTERESTED IN GETTING YOU AWAY FROM THE BIBLE:
This becomes apparent when you chat Mormon missionaries. However well versed they are in the Book of Mormon or Mormon doctrine, it is very seldom that you meet of them who have any more than a superficial knowledge of the Bible. Again, the official Mormon articles of religion hardly hide their belief that the Bible is a book of doubtful worth, while the Book of Mormon is to be trusted beyond any doubt whatsoever:

"We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God." (Article 8)

CONCLUSION:
All the Mormon is asking you to do is to be carried away with every wind of doctrine (Ephesians 4:14) Don't entertain the thought for a single moment. Keep him to the truth of the Bible. Expose the falseness of his religion through the information given above. The Book of Mormon is faulty in its logic. Its doctrine is contrary to that of the Bible and even English grammar. You cannot be saved by grace after you have done all you can do. Romans 11:6 points out that works and grace (when viewed as the source of salvation) are not compatible. Make sure, too, that you preach Christ to them. Give them the truth about Christ and the message of grace. It is this alone which will set them free. 



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