What are gospel ordinances?
An “ordinance” in the Church is any ceremony the Church deems necessary for salvation.
Encyclopedia of Mormonism, pg. 1033; “In harmony with biblical precedent and latter-day commandment, all saving and exalting ordinances, from baptism to temple marriage, are performed in the presence of witnesses, and a proper and faithful record is made and kept in the archives of the Church (2 Cor. 13:1; cf. D&C 128:2-5). Thus, ordinances become “a law on earth and in heaven” and, unless the covenants are violated, they cannot be annulled, “according to the decrees of the great Jehovah” (D&C 128:6-10).”
2 Corinthians 12:21-13:1-3; “And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and that I shall bewail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they have committed. 1 This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established. 2 I told you before, and foretell you, as if I were present, the second time; and being absent now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and to all other, that, if I come again, I will not spare: 3 Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is mighty in you.”
It’s always a dangerous thing when we take things out of context and then couple them with other verses that have nothing to do with what you’re trying to prove. Today’s lesson is case in point.
2 Corinthians 12:31-13:1-6 is actually a chastisement to the Corinthians by the apostle Paul. Here he tells them that it’s the 3rd time he’s had to call them to order so to speak. For the 3rd time he’s told them they need to take care of the sin that is plaguing the early body of believers.
As per the Laws of Moses and coming to our brothers with two witnesses many believed that Paul’s two previous letters were the other two witnesses of calling forth the sinners in this particular church. Paul is calling them to a higher standard of a spiritual life by doing things in the way they’re supposed to be done and not allowing sin to overcome us.
If I didn’t care so much for those in the Mormon Church their mistake here would be laughable. It can serve as a good example to us in the body of believers on what not to do with God’s word.