Tuesday, February 20, 2007

We all worship the same GOD

I read the page on Mormonism that you have on your web site. First of all let me compliment you on your time and effort to share your beleifs and comments on the LDS Church. I'm sure you receive many e-mails from Latter-Day Saints often on your site. When i was 16 years old i received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. I remember that day and how much it changed me. I was a senior in high school when two missionaries came knocking at my door, they gave me a Book of Mormon and asked me to pray about the talk they gave me. I did just as they asked me. For two years on and off i studied the LDS faith and Prophet Joseph Smith. I read good and bad subjects on the church, but mostly on the 14 year old boy Joseph Smith who found the church. Sometimes it makes me sad to know people who bash The Chuch of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint. This is a free country where people are free to express their feelings, but it makes me wonder if they really speak from their hearts or if they just speak out of hatred. I have never felt the spirit in anyother church than i have in the LDS chuch. I do beleive in the chuch i feel so strongly about it. I've grown so much, and i am in love with every little thing about it. What i am trying to say to you is everyone is different. Everyone has thier beleifs. In the end we all worship the same GOD. Different people grow in defferent churches. We are all Heavenly Fathers children, and he loves all of us just the same. It dousn't matter if we are Catholic, Jewish or even people who don't believe in him. I have been open to many different churches, and to be completely honest the nondenominational chuches are the most judge mentel people i have ever met. They teach that they are the onlyones who will go to heaven. We teach even if your not LDS you will oneday be with heavenly father. That is the reason we have the temple. Thank you for your time, and i hope you will be open to my letter and different religions.


Hello Stephanie,

Thank you very much for writing your thoughtful letter. I wanted to begin by saying that I am in complete agreement with you that each individual believes as he chooses. I also am thankful that you recognize the difference between those who speak out of love and those who speak out of hate. I want to be up front about the fact that while I very much disagree with the teachings of the LDS faith, I do not hate the Mormon people. In fact, it is because of my great love for you all (Latter-day Saints), that I desire greatly to proclaim the message of my God and my Gospel.

You said, "In the end we all worship the same GOD."

I do not believe that all people worship the same god. In fact, the god that I worship is not the god of the Mormon faith. For example, I believe in what is called Absolute Monotheism: the belief that only one true god exists. Mormons believe that many true gods exist; even that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are three separate beings, and three gods. This is called polytheism.

Why is this important? If you would, read through John 8. To quickly catch us up, the Pharisees bring to Jesus a woman they caught committing adultery. He challenges the authority of the Pharisees which they then use to question Christ's authority. In verse 13 the Pharisees challenge Christ by declaring: "You are testifying about Yourself; Your testimony is not true" (NASB). Jesus then responds by saying that He testifies about himself, and the Father, who sent him, also testifies of him. After asking where Jesus' father was, Jesus replied: "You know neither Me nor My Father; if you knew Me, you would know My Father also." Jesus continues: "I go away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin; where I am going, you cannot come." It is Jesus' next statements in verses 23-24 that brings me to my point: "You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."

Jesus told the Pharisees that they will die in their sins, unless they believe that "I am he." You probably noticed that the word "he" is italicized in your translation. The reason it has an italics font is because "he" is not in the Greek copies that the New Testament is translated from. ego eimi, or "I am" is actually a claim of divinity. I would now like to provide some background info to establish this. Bear with me =). The Old Testament that Jesus and the rest of the Jews had in the first century was a Greek translation of the Hebrew called the Septuagint. Interestingly enough, what we find in the Septuagint's rendering of Exodus 3:14 and Isaiah 43:10 (both key passages in describing God) is the same Greek phrase for "I am" that Jesus says in John 8:24. In Exodus 3:14, God describes Himself as "I AM that I AM" ... which was how Moses was to describe God to Pharaoh. In Isaiah 43:10, another important text where God declares that He is the only true god in existence, we find the phrase "I AM." It is with this rich background in mind that Jesus describes Himself in John 8, and throughout the rest of John's Gospel. In John 8:58-59 Jesus calls himself "I am," and the Jews picked up stones to throw at him! In John 18, Jesus' referring to himself as "I am" results in the Jews falling down to the ground!

Scurrying back to our text in John 8:24 where Jesus refers to himself as the "I am," you will notice that Jesus' states that a rejection of his divinity results in dying in your sins. Therefore to reject Jesus as he truly is is to remain dead in your sins. It is my belief that the Jesus of Mormonism is not the Jesus taught in the Bible, and is therefore a false Jesus. This means that a belief in the Jesus taught by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints results in one remaining in one's sins. This is why I am so passionate about preaching my Jesus to the Mormon people, because I desire that they, and you, turn from the Jesus taught by the Mormon Church to the Jesus of Scripture.

Having said all that, I would be honored to have a pleasant and kind discussion with you. Might I suggest a first topic: how many true gods exist? I should briefly state that while I do believe in only one true god, I also believe that His one Being is shared by three co-equal and co-eternal Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost (this is what we call the doctrine of the Trinity. And I would love to discuss the Trinity, but after establishing how many true gods are in existence).

Thank you for your email. I hope this was beneficial, and I look forward to hearing from you.

Casey Ryan


At 10:11 PM, Blogger The Paasch-inator said...

Ooooh, Casey... this sounds like someone who might actually want to have a good conversation, instead of just attacking you. ;) Good work - please do post her reply. I'd like to see what she says.

Keep up the Lord's work; God bless!


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