Saturday, November 18, 2006

Why Do Mormons Preach To Other Christians?

Many wonder why Mormons would waste their time trying to convert other Christians who feel that they are already "saved." When the boy Joseph Smith prayed to know which of all the churches was true, he beheld a heavenly vision of God the Father and Jesus Christ. During that first visitation, Jesus Christ told Joseph Smith to join none of the churches, "for they were all wrong; and . . . all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that those professors were all corrupt; that: they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof” (JS-H 1: 19)(Isa. 29: 13)(Matt. 15: 8)(Mark 7: 6).

Later after Joseph Smith was commanded to restore the true Church of Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ stated in the Doctrine and Convenants that the LDS Church "is the the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth, with which I, the Lord, am well pleased" (D&C 1: 30). When Christ was on the Earth he established a church with Apostles and Prophets (Eph. 4: 11)(Luke 11: 49)(Eph. 2: 20)(Eph. 3: 5). That church fell into Apostasy and the world into a spiritual and temporal Dark Age. But now God has re-established (Acts 3: 19-21) his true church on the Earth and invites everyone to "Come and See" (John 1: 39, 46).

It may seem arrogant to believe we are right while everyone else is wrong. It reminds me of how Joseph's brothers felt when Jacob showed the younger Joseph favor by giving him the coat of many colors. I'm sure it seemed downright conceited for Jeseph to tell his brother of his dream which foretold of his elder brothers bowing in reverence to him. For that, Joseph was sold as a slave into Egypt for 20 pieces of silver. But according to the foreknowledge of God, Joseph was able to save his family from starvation during the famine. The events of Joseph and his brothers are a prophetic type and shadow whch is being fulfilled in the Last Days. The world has gone through a great spiritual famine(Amos 8: 11) and can come to a Latter-day Joseph to learn of the true gospel of Jesus Christ. This Latter-day Joseph is Joseph Smith.

The LDS church does not believe all non-Mormons are doomed to Hell. Actually we believe most people are going to heaven. We believe that there is much good and true in most faiths and in most people. Most christian faiths teach that heaven will be a place of glory and freedom from pain and sin. Also, that believers will be servants of Jesus Christ forever. And those churches will deliever on that promise. However, the Bible teaches that there is more. Paul saw the "third heaven" or "Celestial Kingdom" (2 Cor. 12: 2)(1 Cor. 15: 40). Through the grace of Christ, some will merit ressurection to the highest degree of heaven which is compared to the glory of the sun. In the Celestial Kingdom, family relationships will last forever and the faithful will not only recieve salvation but also exaltation (Rom. 8: 17)(Matt. 23: 12).

So, as members of Christ's true church we invite all to come unto Christ, especially other Christians, that they may "come to the knowledge of their Redeemer and the very points of his doctrine, that they may know how to come unto him and be saved" (1 Ne. 15: 14). We invite all to bring everything good with you and "see if we cannot add to it" (Pres Hinkley). I yern to share the fullness of Christ's gospel with my Christian friends because I feel they are missing out on the blessings Christ is waiting to give them.

Here is a brief list of blessings I feel other Christians are missing out on:
1. The Gift of the Holy Ghost. This gift offers the constant companionship of who Jesus refers to as "the Comforter" (John 15: 26).
2. The Melchesidek Priesthood. The power and authority to act in God's name and enter into the Abrahamic Covenant (Heb. 5: 10).
3. Apostles and Prophets. The LDS church is led by direct revelation through living Apostles and Prophets (Matt. 16: 18)(Eph. 4: 11)(Luke 11: 49)(Eph. 2: 20)(Eph. 3: 5).
4. Additional Scripture. The bible fortells of the coming forth of the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is the "Stick of Joseph" that will be joined with the "Stick of Judah" and "shall be one in [thine] hand" (Ezek. 37: 16, 19) (Isa. 29: 11).
5. The Temple. The Bible clearly foretells the rebuilding of the temple and the restoration of the temple ordinances in the Last Days (Isa. 2: 2-3)(Micah 4: 1-2).
6. The Word of Wisdom. A latter-day law of health that protects the Saints from unhealthful substances such as tobacco, alcohol, tea and coffee.
7. Law of Chastity. Modern prophets have counseled us to be modest in dress and grooming, to not date until 16, to not "go steady" until college, to shun pornography, and to practice abstinence before marriage and complete fidelity after marriage (Matt. 5: 28).
8. Eternal Families. Knowing family relationships can endure beyond the grave makes seemingly "irreconcilable differences" much more reconcilable (1 Cor. 11: 11).
9. Answers to the Great Questions of the Soul: Where was I before I was born? Who am I? What is my purpose in this life? What happens after I die?
10. A Community of Caring. Christ church is organized such that members care for one another so that there is "no poor among us." Many wounderful hours are devoted by LDS members visiting each other, making dinner for a new mother, throwing a baby shower, arranging play dates, or babysitting exchanges (James 1: 27)(Deut. 15:7)(Heb. 12: 12)(Matt. 25: 40)(John 13: 34-35).
11. Perfect Church Organization. There is no professional clergy. A newly baptized member could be called as a bishop. Every member can be a missionary. There is no competition between congregations. All congregations are geographically designated and equal with respect to temporal and spiritual blessings.
12. Preparation for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Joseph helped Egypt prepare for the years of famine. The Church of Jesus Christ has helped me prepare temporally and spiritually for the day of tribulation leading up to the Millennilal reign of Jesus Christ.

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