Mike Thomas – Story of leaving Mormonism

I was a member of the Mormon Church for 14 years, and find myself frequently disappointing people when I tell them that I enjoyed being a Latter-day Saint. You will understand that people expect to hear a little scandal with my kind of testimony, but I have none to offer. My wife was a member for 18 years in all, and we left together in August of 1986. Our time in the church was mostly happy. We started a family there and have much for which to be thankful, and very many happy memories. The church was good to us, being supportive through some very difficult times.
I served in various capacities including various clerical duties. I served as Sunday School teacher, Seminary and Institute teacher, teacher in both Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthood quorums, and Ward Missionary Leader. At the time of my leaving I was Elder’s Quorum President. Up to the time of my leaving I was a temple recommend holder and regularly attended the London Temple.

Why I Joined the Mormon Church

I remember my first contact with Mormonism, and the elders who taught me. I remember vividly the conviction with which I embraced the church and it’s teachings. I recall experiencing a burning in the bosom, not just once but many times, and can picture to this day where I was kneeling when it first happened. I could barely contain my excitement as I discovered more through the missionary discussions. This revolutionary message that the heavens were not sealed and that God spoke again through living prophets. I recollect my baptism  at the District Centre then, before Wales had a Stake; It has two now.

In the Mormon church I met some of the most wonderful people you could wish to know. I remember my wife and I being prepared for our first visit to the temple by one of the counsellors of the District President. He was a lovely man, larger than life and full of love and encouragement. I remember the young people we grew alongside in the church and the times we had at District and Stake meetings, Gold and Green balls, temple trips, Fathers and Sons camps, even a visit to London to see Spencer W. Kimball (left). We married and grew up and had families and knew tragedies and triumphs, disenchantment and inspiration.
When we left, we left behind a full life, cherished friends, and good memories. Believe me when I say that our decision to go was not made lightly. And unlike some you might come across, we had nothing against the church, no complaints. Our friends were shocked at our leaving – so were we.

It took less than a month for us to make our momentous decision and, whilst this may seem hardly enough time to fully consider the issues, I assure you we were convinced and had no doubts. I realise now that that month was the culmination of a longer period of questioning and seeking. In the end ours was a real “road to Damascus” experience and, like Saul, it was as if scales fell from our eyes.

Contrary to what you might think, I am not part of an anti-Mormon group. I am not an anti-Mormon at all but a Christian. I am a member of a local Baptist church and my life is taken up with full involvement there. My time is not spent pouring over anti-Mormon literature, nor is it spent finding ways to “get at” Mormons. I do, however, share my experiences and findings with others in the same spirit in which Mormon missionaries go around the doors. I have found the truth and, especially in relation to Latter-day Saints, wish to share it.

I am sometimes asked why I now “fight” the Mormon Church. Mormons I meet ask why I try to convert church members who are, after all, already Christians. I might ask the same question of Mormon missionaries. When they find a Christian on the doorstep do they back away saying “Oh, you already know Jesus”? They do not, because they believe that there is no salvation outside the Mormon church. I believe there is no salvation inside the Mormon church and so, by the same token, I proselyte Latter-day Saints.

Why I Became a Christian

I have already said that I was happy as a Mormon and that I have no complaints about the way the church treated me. The inevitable question is, “Why, then, did you leave? There must have been something wrong”.

I recall it was one Friday evening, the children were in bed, and there was a quiet moment when we looked at each other apprehensively. We had not been discussing church, either that evening or that week, except in the general way. I remember how we tentatively but finally agreed that there was something wrong. There was an unspoken, undefined, significance to that word “something” precisely because we had nothing to complain about.

One of us, I don’t now remember who, said, “It’s not working, is it?”, and the other one agreed. Again an unspoken understanding of something we had never discussed or given the vaguest expression to, yet we each knew what the other meant. Our faith was not “working”. What did we mean by that? We didn’t then know or understand, but we felt an earnest desire to put right whatever it was we felt was wrong because our church membership was important to us.

It was then that we made a decision that, to this day, makes people stare. We turned to a Christian friend. It seems almost inconceivable, especially since we had no reason to shun our church friends, that we should do such a thing. I believe God was in all this. Of course I would say that, wouldn’t I?

I believe our friend John could barely contain his excitement at being presented with such an opportunity. He did hold himself back, however, and simply invited us to church. “Come and see” he said to us. It was in that church that we experienced such a love for God that we were left wondering what it was that we thought we had been experiencing for all those years. Don’t misunderstand me. I am not suggesting that Mormons are loveless, or that they have no genuine desire to serve God. But this was different.

So far we had seen something special in our friend John, something that had caused us, inexplicably, to trust him. We had experienced something amongst John’s friends – an intensity of love and devotion that was so new to us as to be heady, like new wine. Now we wanted to understand. If this was right how did it square with what we had experienced and understood until now? If this was wrong how did these poor people come to be so deceived?

John gave us a modern translation of the Bible (NIV) and encouraged us to read it without any commentary or Bible study aids. He suggested we start with Paul’s letter to the Romans. It was important to us that we should gain an understanding of things and so we now decided to review what we had already experienced, and what we could say for sure we knew, before we went any further. We had already agreed that God would not condemn us for honestly seeking his face and striving for a better understanding of his will. We now agreed that we would trust God to answer our prayers and resolve for us the, so far undefined, misgivings we had about our faith. Not about the Mormon church, but about our faith.

A Message of Grace

The thought that the Mormon Church might not be true had never entered our minds. No-one had spoken against the church in our hearing and we had not looked at any anti literature. Our struggle was not over doctrine. It was about our experience of God. In this spirit, then, of seeking God and trusting him for direction in a very personal pilgrimage, we read his word. It was here we discovered grace.
For all the Mormon church had going for it there was one area in which it singularly failed me. I was looking for something when I joined and I began to see that it was the one thing the church was incapable of delivering. Peace with God. When my wife and I became troubled we really did not understand why. We just knew – I knew – that something fundamental was missing from our spiritual experience. It was only as we began seeking with a determination we had never known before that we saw how radical would have to be the change in our lives if we were to go on with God.

When I set out to read Romans I was looking for a solution to the problems of my faith as a Mormon. I was not trying to sort out the Mormon Church. I was trying to sort out Mike Thomas. I wanted to get right with God so that I could be a better Latter-day Saint. Now you might say that I had a peculiar way of doing this. After all, going to a non-member etc. But God was in this from beginning to end so how could I do otherwise?

It was now that I did the one thing I had never done before. I knelt before God and asked Jesus to be my Saviour. I had believed in him for years, but I had been taught that the way to salvation was by obedience to the Mormon church. The church had effectively stood between me and God.

I came to see that there is only one mediator between men and God, the man Christ Jesus. I realised that the head of every man is Christ, not an organisation. I saw that all who came to him would not be condemned but would receive eternal life. I had an assurance of eternal life, something I had never known before, something no Mormon knows because the Mormon church teaches that salvation is by obedience, and so it is arrogant and presumptuous to say that you know. The Bible told me that I could know, the Mormon Church told me that I couldn’t. I chose to believe the Word of God.

Now I was faced with a dilemma. Could I give up all those things that had been my life up to now? Leave my church friends? People think that obedience is all about the ten commandments and that sort of thing. Really it is about attitude. What really is the most important thing in your life? Put like that there was no other choice. I left the Mormon Church and embraced my newly discovered joy. My life since really coming to know Jesus bears no comparison to all those years when I only thought I knew him. Iremember the sobering realisation of what was happening when my wife one day said, “You realise we can’t go back?”

I made the right choice and discovered a God who truly proves his faithfulness. So many scripture promises came true for me when I sought him and and discovered that “if you seek him, he will be found by you” (1 Chron.28:9). Coming from a system that saw obedience to law as the way to God I was brought to rejoice in the fact that “a righteousness from God , apart from the law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify” (Romans 3:21). The assurances of God’s Word are a blessing to me beyond anything I could hope or ask. I know that through faith in Jesus I have eternal life as a present possession and a guaranteed inheritance (John 5:24). I just thought you would like to know.

What we Discovered in Romans

What did we find in our reading of Paul’s letter to the Roman? We travelled what we later found was called The Roman Road. It is one of many journeys through the Bible designed to help us understand the fundamentals of God’s Word. I reproduce it here:

THE ROMAN ROAD

This is a simple explanation of the gospel, using scriptures from the Book of Romans – hence the name. It can be easily marked in your Bible by writing the first reference at the beginning of Romans, and then in the margin by each reference writing the reference which follows. Thus when you want to share the gospel message from the scriptures, you do not need to remember a string of references, you just need to look at the book of Romans and follow the road through it. The references and a brief description follows. Feel free to explain them in your own words.

3:10 – There is no-one righteous, no matter how good we are or how hard we try.

3:23 – All have sinned and fallen short. It is impossible for us to measure up to God’s standard.

5:12 – Death came to all men, because all sinned. It is our nature to sin.

5:8 – Because of God’s love for us, he sent Christ to die for us – while we were still sinners, not because we had done anything to earn it.

6:23 – The wages of sin is death – wages are what you earn as a result of what you do. The gift of God is eternal life – you do not earn a gift, or deserve it. God gives the gift because He loves us. We do not need to work for it, only accept it.

10:13 – Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved, regardless of who they are or what they have done. You only have to call.

10:9,10 – True, heart-felt confession of faith in Jesus is what it takes to be saved, not works.

Thanks to Mike Thomas for allowing me to use his testimony, please check out his blog at

http://mormonchapbook.blogspot.com/

About these ads

11 Responses »

  1. Thank you. As a former Mormon myself, I always compare my Christian experiences with my Mormon experiences. I really just want to love God and forget about the Mormon teachings that confuse me. Your message helps simplify that quest.

    God Bless you

    Romans 8:28
    Michelle
    Sandy, Utah

  2. I Emmensly enjoyed reading this. I too have only happy memories of the LDS Church. I don’t regret one minute of it!
    I have have no horror stories to tell.

  3. I enjoyed your blog, but found some parts to be dishonest and untruthful. Perhaps this was simply a misunderstanding on your part, because you seem honest and sincere. As a life-long member of the LDS Church, I know that it is untrue that “the Mormon church teaches that salvation is by obedience”. Although the church does emphasize doing good works (because, as James teaches in the Bible, faith without works is dead), this is simply as an expression of your faith and your love for God and His Son, Jesus Christ, not as a way to “earn” your way into Heaven . The church teaches that freedom from the chains of death is a free gift to all men, given to us by Christ, and that all will be resurrected and live forever. The church also teaches that, on Judgment Day, we will all stand to be judged by Christ for our actions on Earth. However, contrary to your statement, the church DOES teach that we are all sinners, and that none of us could make it back to the presence of God without the grace of Christ and His atoning sacrifice for us, no matter how good we are or how many good works we do.
    I commend you for trying to live a spiritual life, I try to do the same. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has always encouraged me to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, accept Him as my Savior, and try to emulate His life. I fail at this on a regular basis, but I’ll keep repenting and keep trying for the rest of my life! Anyway, I wish you and your family well on your spiritual journey. God bless you as you strive to follow Christ!

    • Jared thanks for visiting this blog I am glad you have enjoyed it so far, I certainly try and be honest in every area of it and any points I make such as the LDS church focusing on works etc I believe I put referecnes on this backing it up, so feel free to go back to those posts and if you wish to discuss anything I have said on them feel free to leave a comment on there however I certainly would not say I get everything right all the time.

      I think what you are saying about grace and works fits in with how I see it biblically, however when we get in to exaltation being what Mormonism would think of as the top goal of man in salvation, we see that it most certainly isnt by grace alone, biblically I see nothing to support this and that all salvation is a work of God in the lives of sinners who put their trust in Christ.

      One question I would ask is do you have 100% assurance right now of your eternity because of your faith in Christ alone if you were to die today?

    • Jared:
      Interesting that you assert that Mr. Thomas of being dishonest, untruthful or ignorant about Mormon doctrine on salvation. More specifically, you assert that ‘[a]s a life-long member of the LDS Church, I know that it is untrue that “the Mormon church teaches that salvation is by obedience”’. You go on to say that the LDS church does not teach as doctrine that our works can save us and that it is only through grace through Christ that we can be saved (Eternal Life/Celestial Kingdom would be the LDS equivalent).

      As I was a member of the LDS church for 39 years, I too am very familiar with its teachings and doctrines. While your assertions sound very mainstream Christian, they are very misleading and fall short of honest and real disclosure of long-standing LDS doctrine.

      The Bible indeed declares without equivocation: Jesus answered, “I AM the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except THROUGH ME. John 14:6. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes IN HIM shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16. That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you WILL BE SAVED. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. Romans 10:9. Salvation is found IN NO ONE ELSE, for there is NO OTHER NAME under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:10-12.

      However, your (and the LDS church’s) slight of hand and clear deviation from biblical declaration are illuminated in the following official LDS church declarations made in the Articles of Faith:

      “We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, BY OBEDIENCE TO THE LAWS AND ORDINANCES OF THE GOSPEL.” Notice that DOESN’T mention “by faith in Jesus Christ.” Instead, the LDS third article of faith says that it is through the Atonement of Christ, “by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel” that mankind “may” be saved.

      Note that the Bible declares that: “For it is BY GRACE you have been saved, THROUGH FAITH —and this not from yourselves, IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD — NOT BY WORKS, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10 (And Jesus declared: “This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” John 6:29.)

      But, in addition to “by obedience to the laws and ordinances . . . “, the Book of Mormon adds: It is “by grace that we are saved, AFTER ALL WE CAN DO.” (2 Nephi 25:23.

      So, what then, according to Mormonism, are “the laws and ordinances of the Gospel” that we must be obedient to and what is the “all we can do” that we must first do before qualifying to receive the grace (gift) of God? (to really completely understand, an examination of LDS definition of “salvation” is really in order but I will leave alone here for space considerations – suffice it to say that, according to LDS doctrine, Salvation really means only resurrection to a new immortal body but not necessarily entering into the Kingdom of God; Eternal Life, on the other hand, means entering the highest degree of glory or the Celestial Kingdom – the real Mormon counterpart to the traditional “salvation” in the mind of the average Christian – but Eternal Life in the Celestial Kingdom is significantly different in meaning for Mormons).

      Among of the “laws and ordinances” and the “all we can do” list are (in addition to “having a ‘testimony’ of Jesus Christ’s atonement and his role as Savior and Redeemer”) that you must:

      -Accept and believe in Joseph Smith as a Prophet, Seer, Revelator, and restorer of the one and only true church on the face of the earth (numerous are the LDS Prophet and Apostle quotations that there is no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith);
      -Accept and believe in the Mormon church as the one and only true church on the face of the earth;
      -Accept, believe in and commit to following the current Prophet and church leaders in strict obedience;
      -Committing to and living the Word of Wisdom (no coffee, tea, alcohol, tobacco, or illegal drugs), Commit to living the law of Chastity (no sex outside of marriage), faithfully Tithing, faithfully attend church, keep the Sabbath day holy, etc.
      -Be baptized by the Mormon church (the only church with authority to perform such an ordinance to be valid);
      -Be confirmed a member of the church and receive the “gift of the Holy Ghost” (again, can only be performed by a faithful LDS priesthood holder);

      And the foregoing list of requirements is only the beginning to achieve the bottom rung of the Celestial Kingdom (aka: Eternal Life in God’s Kingdom). It is the opening of the gate. Miss any of the above requirements, and you MAY NOT enter the bottom rung of the Celestial Kingdom. To achieve the higher levels of the Celestial Kingdom, one MUST:

      -Receive the Aronic and Melchezidek Priesthoods (if you are male);
      -Be faithful in any church callings you may receive
      -Be endowed in an LDS temple where you will learn the required signs, tokens and penalties that will allow you to pass by the angles that stand as sentinels that lead to the kingdom;
      -Wear the prescribed LDS garment night and day;
      -Be married in an LDS temple (the key to entering the highest level of the Celestial Kingdom) [And, if you believe in the Doctrine and Covenants, Brigham Young and other subsequent LDS prophets and apostles, you must accept polygamy and enter into polygamous marriages (read D&C 132) (“for all those who have this law revealed unto them must obey the same. For behold, I reveal unto you a new and an everlasting covenant; and if ye abide not that covenant, then are ye damned; for no one can reject this covenant and be permitted to enter into my glory.”)]

      Fail to be faithfully obedient to and accomplish any of the foregoing list of “must-do’s” (and you must be Mormon to do so), you may not achieve the highest levels of the Celestial Kingdom.

      So when Mormons say that: “Mormons unequivocally believe that there is no other way to heaven besides accepting Jesus Christ as their savior and having faith in him”, there is much more than meets the eye with such a simple but misleading statement.

      In addition to the “all we can do”, the next slight of hand and other problem is that Mormonism teaches that the LDS Church is the way, the truth and the life and the only way that men can receive eternal life.

      Brigham Young declared that anyone who does not confess that Joseph Smith was sent of God is of the anti-christ. Further he said: “They may say that they acknowledge Him [Jesus Christ] until doomsday, and he will never own them, nor bestow the Holy Spirit upon them, and they will never have visions of eternity opened to them, unless they acknowledge that Joseph Smith is sent of God. Such people I call unbelievers. They tell about believing in Jesus Christ, but they might as well talk about birds understanding the Hebrew language.” Journal of Discourses 8:176.

      Brigham also declared that “no man or woman in this dispensation will ever enter into the celestial kingdom of God without the consent of Joseph Smith.”
      Joseph F. Smith also stated that there is “no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith.” Journal of Discourses 7:289.

      Marion Romney (LDS First Presidency) said, “THIS CHURCH is the ensign on the mountain spoken of by the Old Testament prophets. IT IS THE WAY, THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE” (Conference Report, April, 1961, pg. 119).

      “This is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This is ‘the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth’ according to the word of revelation [D&C 1:30]. Here lies the truth. Here lies the priesthood. Hold to THE CHURCH. Do not ever lose sight of the fact that THE CHURCH must ever remain preeminent in your lives if you are going to be happy as the years pass. Never let yourselves be found in the position of fighting The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You cling to IT and be faithful to IT. You uphold and sustain IT. You teach ITS DOCTRINE and LIVE BY IT. And I do not hesitate to say that your lives will be the richer and the happier because of that. You cannot find happiness fighting the work of God. Those who have done so have gone down to a dismal end” (Gordon B. Hinkley, Ricks College regional conference, Rexburg, Idaho, 29 Oct. 1995).

      “One of the most fallacious doctrines originated by Satan and propounded by man is that man is saved alone by the grace of God; that belief in Jesus Christ alone is all that is needed for salvation,” (Miracle of Forgiveness, Spencer W. Kimball, p. 206)

      Clearly these unambiguous statements from LDS prophets and apostles contradict your assertion that the Mormon Church teaches that Christ alone is the path the eternal life in the Kingdom of God.

      True, as you state, the LDS church teaches that “none of us could make it back to the presence of God without the grace of Christ and His atoning sacrifice for us, no matter how good we are or how many good works we do”, but that is only part of the story (and arguably a relatively small part of the story).

      The declarations of the LDS “prophets” and “apostles” are directly contrary to the clear, plain and simple Word of God:

      Jesus answered, “I AM the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except TROUGH ME. John 14:6

      For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes IN HIM shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

      Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
      . . . .
      I AM the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I AM come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. John 10:1;9-10

      Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:10-12

      It would appear that Mr. Thomas’s statements were indeed on the mark, after all. It would appear also that Mormonism has deviated far from the plain and simple truth that is in Christ.

      May God bless you as you seek Him in truth.

  4. Rob and Bobby,

    Thanks for your thoughts. Here’s my (hopefully) brief response:

    Yes, Bobby, I truly am certain that if I dropped dead in this moment that I would be OK in eternity because of my faith in Jesus Christ as my Savior and Redeemer. Nothing I do, have done, or will ever do can ever repay or even come close to repaying the price He paid for my sins. I will forever be in His debt. OH, how I love my Heavenly Father for sending His Son, and how I love Jesus Christ for His wondrous gift to me and all mankind.

    However, I am also certain that Christ restored His church and His authority to the earth through the Prophet Joseph Smith. Because of my spiritual knowledge of this fact, I also follow, as best I can, the teachings of His church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    Those two statements aren’t contradictory at all. Because I have received a spiritual witness of both, it’s really a simple thing. Recognizing Christ as my Lord and Savior, I naturally want to be a part of His church, and follow its teachings.

    Rob, you gave a lot of good information in your comment, but some misinformation as well. You quoted the Third Article of Faith, emphasizing the laws and ordinances part, but glossing over the “through the Atonement of Christ” wording above that. Now that isn’t the exact same wording as “through faith in Christ,” but it’s the same thing. To put it in other words, the Third Article of Faith says that because of Christ’s Atonement all mankind may be saved, if they embrace His gospel and follow its teachings. And, as I said above, logically, because I believe Christ has restored His church, I would naturally want to follow its teachings and receive its ordinances (Baptism, Confirmation, etc.) There’s no contradiction there, either.

    The Fourth Article of Faith kind of clarifies this, too, stating that:
    “We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
    So there’s the first four things one should do in joining Christ’s church: first (and foremost) have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. This would include what other churches mean by “accepting Christ as their Lord and Savior”; second, repent of your sins; third, be baptized by immersion; and fourth, receive the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands. Now granted, there are lots more things that as members of the church we are asked to do as we progress in the Gospel and learn more and become better people, but that’s the simple way it begins. With faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. I am learning as I go, but that’s how I began this spiritual journey, and that’s the bedrock of my life.

    I guess it really comes down to the different way we all say things. Many churches teach about the importance of having faith in Christ and accepting His grace. In our church we teach this, too, only we speak of the “Atonement” of Christ and His sacrifice for our sins.

    I guess part of the difference, too, is that in our church we follow both the biblical teachings of Paul and of James. Paul spoke of the power of Christ’s grace, and that our faith can save us. James spoke of the need for good works in our lives as a demonstration or physical manifestation of our faith. “Faith without works is dead, being alone.” So leading a true Christian life means more, much more, than simply having faith in Jesus or accepting Him as your Savior. Our works, or in other words, what we do every day, should be a witness to the world of our faith. Faith and good works are not polar opposites in some religious battle. Good works, which include keeping the commandments of God, following His teachings, and accepting the ordinances of His church, are simply an outward manifestation of our faith. Good works will naturally flow from our lives, because of our faith in Christ. Both should be evident in the life of anyone who is truly trying to follow Christ.

    Anyway, thanks for your comments, both of you. I hope I’ve helped clarify a few things. I didn’t address everything, because then this would be longer than it already is! The bottom line for me is that I admire the faith you both show, and wish you well as you try to follow Christ and make Him the center of your lives. Because of the spiritual truths that God has revealed to me through the Holy Ghost, I will continue to follow Christ and make Him the center of my life. I will also strive to follow the teachings of His church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Have a great day!

  5. Hi Jared,
    I love your explanation, it is really good. As a new Christian, I tried explaining this to some family members who are Mormon. The whole “Faith without works is dead.” I actually said this same sentence “Good works will naturally flow from our lives, because of our faith in Christ.” I was told that is just NOT true! It’s “Only after all that we can do!” Then does Christ do the rest for us, through the Atonement. I find some of your explanation to fit more with Biblical Christianity than Mormonism.

    Tell me, do you believe you are saved if you don’t keep the word of wisdom? Baptism? Confirmation? Have a Temple marriage? Baptism for the dead? Sealings for the dead? Etc., etc., etc.?? Can you achieve exaltation without it? Can you live with God again without all of that? How do you reconcile all of that with the Scriptures??

    Ephesians 2:8-10 (King James Version)

    8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

    9Not of works, lest any man should boast.

    Galatians 2:16 (King James Version)

    16Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

    Galatians 3:2-5 (King James Version)

    2This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

    3Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?

    4Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.

    5He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?

    Galations 2:21
    21I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

    There are so many scriptures like this yet Mormonism sticks to one little sentence “Faith without works is dead.” Which more often than not is taken out of context.

  6. Hi, Kate,

    Welcome to the family of Christ! That’s exciting! Congratulations! I pray your life from now on will reflect the light you have been given.

    As for the points you raised:
    It is true that some members of the church misunderstand the whole “Faith vs Works” thing. They think all other Christians just do the “faith” thing. And many other Christians think that LDS church members just do the “works” thing. BOTH faith and works are right and necessary. And hopefully everyone, both inside and outside the church, is both exercising faith AND doing good works! What Nephi meant when he said that “it is by grace we are saved, after all we can do” has been clarified and reiterated by many prophets since then, which is that no matter how good we are, or how many good things we do, we ALL fall short of what Heaven requires, because we all sin. Since no unclean thing can dwell with God, we are ALL saved by grace. Because of Christ’s atoning sacrifice, repentance allows us to be clean again in God’s eyes and return to His presence.

    In answer to your questions about the things we do in the church (baptism, etc.) the answer there is pretty simple too, and again, people seem to see the ordinances of the gospel as some kind of bad thing, although we’re really simply following Christ’s example. Jesus was baptized, not because He had sinned, but “to fulfill all righteousness.” He directed His original Apostles to baptize those who desired to join the church, and lay their hands on them to give them the Gift of the Holy Ghost, etc. These “works” were (and are) saving ordinances in Christ’s church, “works” that the members did as part of becoming and being members of Christ’s church. So although we aren’t justified by our “works”, some “works” are part and parcel of being a member of Christ’s church. The other ordinances (temple work, etc.) in the LDS church are just a continuation of that. And, as I said before, since I have a spiritual witness that Christ’s true church really is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, then whatever ordinances are part of His church are part of His gospel. They’re not a contradiction of scripture, they’re simply just like baptism, a part of His gospel.

    Well, I’ve probably commented too much on this blog, so I’ll sign off.

    Kate, I wish you well as you embrace and follow Christ as a new Christian! May His light enlighten your mind and heart, and may you reflect that light in all you do. God bless you!

  7. Here is my question for you, how can you believe in a “new book”(book of Mormon) when the bible says that nothing should be taken from it or added to it, yet there are scriptures word for word in the book of Mormon from the Bible, and… the book of Mormon keeps changing,,,, did God make a mistake, suddenly realize it (manymany many years later) and decide he needed to write a new book and change the rules?
    The last word in the Bible is Amen.

  8. I grew up with Mike in the small town of Kidwelly on the West Wales coast. He was part of my life for many years. The best man at my wedding. We have led very different lives. Mine packed with error and challenge, difficulties and problems. Mostly of my own doing. Mike I feel, has been blessed. Finding what he found at such an early age. But I feel too, and this is for you Mike, that I too have been blessed. For every single thing, day and moment has been a wonder. In that sense, I have been lucky. I now write. For a living. Dylan Thomas once said, when asked if he believed in God, ‘I am an atheist, though I write in praise of God’ – one of the more profound statements every uttered and one of the more damning indictments of human beings. Mike, I will never forget those early days. Good luck. Jeff Murphy

    • Just to bring you up-to-date on this comment, Jeff is an old and much-loved friend and I plan to visit him next Saturday, 12 October, to catch up. We have spoken and emailed and he is,indeed, blessed in his life. I am so excited at the prospect of meeting him again and can’t be thankful enough for this blog that has brought us back together after so very many years.

      God is good and life is precious, friends are dear and true friendship knows no real boundaries of time or space.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 324 other followers

%d bloggers like this: