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Absolutely- we have to do certain things to be saved. But we do not do the saving. This is Biblical to the core. Christ commands us to keep His commandments and to follow Him, to repent, and "sin no more." And our reward is proportional to our obedience- "for one star differeth from another star in glory, so also is the resurrection of the dead." 1 Corinthians 15:41-42.
"To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne." Rev 3:21
"If ye love me, keep my commandments."
"He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me."
"Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you."
"Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city."
WE MUST KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS TO THE BEST OF OUR ABILITY, BUT THAT DOES NOT SAVE US. CHRIST SAVES THOSE WHO KEEP HIS COMMANDMENTS. This may not be convenient, but it is true.
Bible- yes, everything in the natural world testifies of God- but that doesn't answer the questions on doctrine. Understand, appealing to sola and totala scriptura doens't settle the issue. SOMEBODY IS INTERPRETING THE SCRIPTURES from this basis.
LDS doctrines found in the Bible:
1. Godhead- huge topic, but if one interprets the bible literally, you cannot get away from the Father and Son being separate. Many scriptures to support. Consider Genesis 3:22- "the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us." Or John 17. etc. etc.
2. Man may become like God- again Genesis 3:22- man is become like one of us. Psalms 82:6 I have said ye are gods...children of the Most High God." Again quoted by Christ himself in John 10:34. Acts 17:29 offspring of God. Romans 8:17 joint heirs with Christ. 1 John 3:2 when he shall appear, we shall be like him.
3. Premortal life- Job 38:7 all the sons of God shouted for joy (at the creation). Eccl 12:7 the spirit shall return unto God who gave it; Jer 1:5 Before I formed the in the belly I knew thee; Romans 8:29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestine; Ephesians 1:4 chosen us in him before the foundation of the world; Jude 1:6 angels which kept not their first estate (explain this one);
Could go on and on. You will of course reject these examples. But that is your opinion, and any authority you use to reject these interpretations is man-made. Appealing to the Bible solely or in totality will not work to exclude my interpretation. I can justify these doctrines and others on this basis.
Thanks for the response. My comments were not qualified in any way. We believe we are saved by grace 100% by Christ, and by that I mean exaltation. Our works do not save us, but are necessary for salvation (exaltation). I am not hiding behind any definition of salvation. Christ will save those who repent and obey Him. This doesn't mean that the obedience saves, it is Christ who does 100% of the saving.
It is interesting how EVs can simplify salvation to the point of saying we must "believe in Christ" to be saved. Then turn around and complicate it according to their definitions. What you are saying is that even though we may believe and have faith in Christ as the Savior of the world and the only means of salvation, we do not have the correct belief in who He is. Am I correct? Do you see that this could be seen as a double standard?
LDS are accused of "adding" things required for salvation (temple marriage, priesthood, etc). Are you not doing the same thing? Show me in scripture where Christ connects your specific "objective" criteria to salvation. Don't get me wrong- I believe there are specific things required for salvation- for which you may find fault. I am simply applying the same standard.
The Bible- sorry if I was not clear. I was saying that the Bible is viewed by EV as the only authority on earth in relation to God- am i right? If there is no priesthood, or persons commissioned from an authority higher than themselves, then I am correct in saying that all anybody has is their interpretation of the Bible. And my interpretation is just as legitimate as any other. I can just as easily say that your understanding of the complete collection of holy writ found in the Bible is incorrect. I can give just as many examples of evangelical doctrines that contradict the Bible according to my interpretation. There is no way around this.
Thanks for the response!
A thought I had today- What does an evangelical have that a LDS doesn't? Nothing. What does a LDS have that an evangelical doesn't? Where do I start. Don't mean to say we are better or anything like that.
Here is what I mean: If the EVs are right, the bible is the only and complete word of God. There is no priesthood and no authority outside the Bible. The bible is the only thing we have from God today. So, if you are right, we still have everything that you have because we too have the Bible. Follow?
BUT, if LDS are right, then there are many huge and important things that you are missing out on- Priesthood, eternal marriage, Book of Mormon, modern prophets, etc.
AND if evangelicals are correct that the Bible is the sole authority in the world, then you have no more authority than any LDS to say who is saved and what the Bible means. You are left with your opinion, and that is it.
And although you believe, or say the LDS are not "saved," you are basing that on incorrect information. I say that because no EV has ever stated accurately here to my knowledge what we believe about faith vs. works. I can only conclude you do not understand our doctrine. In other words, if what you say about salvation is true- the LDS qualify for salvation by your own definition.
Aaron- it's working- thanks!
The same claims are made over and over so many times by LDS critics that it really becomes a disincentive for some LDS to engage in conversation. The whole faith vs. works discussion is repeated so many times. And not once do any critics here accurately OR fairly relate our doctrine on this topic after several extensive discussions. Why is this? I can only conclude that people will believe what they want to believe about us, even it is not true and even if they are shown differently over and over. Does this persistence in stance fulfill some function? There must be some fulfillment in feeling that you have shown fault in the LDS doctrine- that is honestly all I can figure. I truly believe it is a kind of religion in and of itself. Why else say the same falsehood over and over and over and over? It appears so dishonest.
Part of this religion claims that the LDS church changes its doctrine to appeal to the world. Look at homosexual marriage- how many churches have bent over to the gay lobby- countless. Gambling, drinking, morality, feminism, female ordination, unmarried cohabitation, etc. The larger church organizations are caving in large measure to worldy trends. Yes- there are smaller organizations- churches- that haven't, but they are more local in nature. Not many churches as big as the LDS church have not drifted.
WE ARE COMMANDED TO KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS- any version of Christianity that claims otherwise is a fairytale. AND WE DO NOT BELIEVE OUR WORKS SAVE US. But we must obey God to be saved. CHRIST SAVES US 100%. IS THIS REALLY TOO COMPLICATED?
To say we have all the scripture God has given is an even bigger jump.