Mormon Dilemma 33

23 July

Joseph Smith & Inauguration of Masonic/Mormon Endowment Ceremony

History of the Church 5:1-2;Inauguration of Endowment Ceremonies… And the communications I made to this council were of things spiritual, and to be received only by the I spiritual minded: and there was nothing made known to these men but what will be made known to all the Saints of the last days, so soon as they are prepared to receive, and a proper place is prepared to communicate them, even to the weakest of the Saints; therefore let the Saints be diligent in building the Temple, and all houses which they have been, or shall hereafter be, commanded of God to build; and wait their time with patience in all meekness, faith, perseverance unto the end, knowing assuredly that all these things referred to in this council are always governed by the principle of revelation.” – Wednesday, May 4, 1842

Matthew 5:33-34; Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths:  34 But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God’s throne.

This took place on Wednesday, May 4, 1842.

Could it be a coincidence the revelation for signs, tokens and handshakes were instituted into the temple endowment ceremony a mere six weeks after Smith became a Mason?  I think not!

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6 Responses to “Mormon Dilemma 33”

  1. shematwater July 25, 2011 at 6:58 pm #

    I would agree. God had waited until Joseph Smith and the saints were sufficiently prepared to receive these things. As Joseph was entering in the Freemason order there was no more natural place to reveal the truths of the temple ceremony than while Joseph was witnessing the corrupted version of them.
    People seem to think that just because things fall in line there can be no divine guidance in any of it. This is a ridiculous idea.

  2. CamdenC July 25, 2011 at 9:02 pm #

    Didn’t Joseph Smith, because he was a prophet, elavate himself to 32nd or 33rd degree without going through all the rites, rituals, and time that a “mere man” has to and the Masons board in that area revoked the LDS chapter? At which time the LDS started building the first temple…
    And us “people” do believe that God has a plan for everyone and everything. It is our privelage to seek out and learn of His will for our lives.
    And what is this “temple ceremony”? The only temple ceremony that is valid is the one found in the Old Testament. The temple where the Ark of the Covanant was kept in the Holy of Holies.
    Once again, the need for any temple was removed when Christ came as the atonement of sins by being the Perfect Sacrifice once and for all. Now unless the temple (Mormon or Mason) rituals involve the High Priest offering up a sacrifice and sprinkling the bulls blood on the mercy seat of the Ark in the Holy of Holies, the ritual is not from God. Even doing what is described here is of no value, the veil of the temple was torn from top to bottom. Do you not believe in the all saving blood of Jesus Christ?
    What is the purpose of going to the temple? Sure, there are baptisms for the dead (done them) marriage and the sealing of families (been there) but honestly, why did God keep those things from us for 1800 years? Why would He allow His “spirit children” to be in the dark for so long? Why would He allow His Word (the Bible) to be “chopped up” and translated wrong, many important things left out by the transcribers?

  3. shematwater July 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm #

    CAMDEN

    You are assuming quite a bit.
    Now, I don’t know about all the interaction between Joseph Smith and the Freemasons, but the rest of what you say I can comment on.

    First, the veil being rent does not mean the temple is no longer needed. This is actually not found anywhere in the account. It is a belief that many hold based on this account, but it is not actually part of it. As such it is a personal interpretation, not being biblically proven, and thus to reject it is not to contradict the Bible. I think a more logical conclusion is that the Temple at Jerusalem had been rejected by God, and that their priesthood line (which was done away with in Christ) no longer held authority. This does not mean that temples are not needed, only that that particular one was no longer accepted of God.
    Speaking of all the ceremonies that were performed in the Temple from the time of Moses, the Bible never actually states that the ones listed were all the ones performed. Actually, all it really lists in the Old Testament is that part that was added to the Covenant of Abraham (Galatians 3: 17). As such, to claim that nothing else was done in the Temple is to again put more into the words of the Bible than are actually there.
    To answer your questions:
    Q. why did God keep those things from us for 1800 years?
    A. Each person has need of different experiences in this life. For some that meant to be born in a time when the fullness of the gospel was not available, and to be tried in a time when fear and superstition ruled. They were not to be denied the gospel, for preparation was made for them to receive it after this life. But in this life they needed the experience they were given.

    Q. Why would He allow His “spirit children” to be in the dark for so long?
    A. See the previous question.

    Q. Why would He allow His Word (the Bible) to be “chopped up” and translated wrong, many important things left out by the transcribers?
    A. Again, all people must be tried in the way that will most benefit them if they prevail. God, though he had the power to preserve his word, gave unto men the power to alter it so that when the temptation came he could give a just reward or punishment.
    It is the same as why does God allow murder? He allows it because if he did not he could not justly condemn those who seek it.

    Now, I will ask a question: Why are there people who are born without ever receiving a knowledge of Christ?

  4. CamdenC July 26, 2011 at 10:05 pm #

    Your answer #1: The Bible says that we are destined to die once, then face judgement… and Paul says that absent from the body is present with the Lord. So I don’t believe we have a chance after we die to accept or reject it. Jesus said, if you deny me before men, I will deny you before my Father. Also, He said that blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is THE unpardonable sin. I believe that blashpemy of the Holy Spirit is rejecting the free offer of salvation by rejecting Jesus as Lord, thus, not allowing the Holy Spirit to dwell in you… That’s why He came here when Jesus left, to fill the believer.
    Same for answer #2
    Answer #3: Isaiah 40: 8 says, “The grass witherth and the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever. Jesus is the Word, He would not allow His own Word to be twisted and corrupted. I know that Mormons don’t believe in the Dead Sea scrolls (at least the Mormons I know), but they prove that whole chapters in the OT Bible are the same that we have today. The Jewish scribes were very meticulas when copying the OT to the point that if they messed up one letter, they would throw the whole page away. Jesus also said that not one jot or tittle would pass from the law. There are more manuscripts from within a few dozen years of the Apostles regarding the NT than the works of Plato, Homer, or even Shakespeare… combined.
    It’s true that God doesn’t have a big chess board in the sky and He is directing the moves of every person on earth. We have free will to sin, but I just can’t believe that He would let His very own Word be changed or corrupted.
    Why are people born and die without ever knowing Christ? That is one of the age old questions we Christians wrestle with all the time. We try to make excuses like; God is a just God and He will judge that aboriginee in the Australian outback on the Ten Commandments (They are written on the tablets of our hearts) But who are we to drag God down to our mortal ways of thinking? We say that because we think that a loving God must surely do what we would do… Why? He’s God and we’re not. He can do and will do whatever He pleases. Jesus made it crystal clear in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life and no man cometh unto the Father but by Me”. I have to believe Jesus 100%.
    Also, if we get complacent about the eternal destiny of peoples in the far corners of the earth or 3rd world countries because we believe that God will eventually save them or they have a second chance, what motivation is there to preach the gospel unto the ends of the earth? We would get an attitude of, “Well whether I go to them or not, they will eventually get in”. Our hearts are broken for the people that are lost and hurting in countries where we can and can’t go.
    OUr men’s Bible study group is putting together a food/clothing drive for the people of Haiti. We have been there several times since the earthquake to re-build houses and churches.
    If there is a second chance, then why should I live my life for God now? No man knows the day or hour of both the return of Jesus or the end of their life. I could die driving home today. While witnessing to atheists and agnostics I tell them, The time to repent, ask for forgiveness and give your heart to Jesus is now… don’t delay, you don’t know what may happen to your life at any moment.
    Speaking of which… I got to go home. Talk to ya tomorrow.

  5. shematwater July 30, 2011 at 7:30 pm #

    CAMDEN

    It all comes down to interpretation. I have given you a very reasonable, logical answer to your questions. You choose not to believe it, but that choice is based solely on your interpretation of certain passages of scripture, and your own feelings. That is fine, but then you must allow me to accept these reasons based on my interpretation of the Bible and my own feelings. Neither one of us has proved the other wrong, and thus neither has proved themselves right. As such, there is no real dilemma for the LDS church.

    And just so you know, there are still reasons to preached the gospel, and there really is no second chance. You either accept the gospel when you receive it, or you don’t. For some they will receive it in this life, and so they must accept it in this life. However, for those who never have the option of accepting it in this life are given that choice (for the first time) in the next.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Mormon Dilemma 262 « Life After Ministry - May 23, 2012

    […] In March 1842 Smith attended a Grand Lodge meeting with his brother Hyrum. The next day on March 16, 1842 Joseph Smith became a Mason.  Seven weeks later Smith had a prophecy declaring God told him to enact the “sacred” temple oaths in their Mormon temple ceremonies.  http://lifeafterministry.wordpress.com/2011/07/23/mormon-dilemma-33/ […]

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