1 Corinthians 15:1-4; “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; 2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. 3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; 4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures”.
Journal of Discourses, 6:280–281; “Every item of doctrine brother Joseph has brought forth had to meet with opposition from the world. We all know that it comes in contact with sectarian influence and every other influence that is not direct from God. … You can understand, from the few remarks I make with regard to the Gospel, that many things which were revealed through Joseph came in contact with our own prejudices: We did not know how to understand them. I refer to myself for an instance. … My traditions were such, that when the Vision came first to me, it was directly contrary and opposed to my former education.” – Brigham Young, Great Salt Lake City, August 29, 1852
The article referenced above is the first in a two part series the Church published in 1989, and today we’re taking a look at a few of things they said about Smith’s ‘restoration’ of original Christianity. The article was written by Donald Q. Cannon, Larry E. Dahl, and John W. Welch.
I pray you hear me out on this because if this submission of the Church isn’tthe most important thing they’ve ever published, nothing else qualifies. Ever.
First, let’s take a look at the meaning of ‘restoration’ –
Dictionary.com defines it this way –
‘a return of something to a former, original, normal, or unimpaired condition’
One would think this is what Smith did with his life’s work and ‘ministry’, but as we all know, this doesn’t come close to the activities of Joseph Smith. His actions were more along the lines of a ruination, or complete debacle, of biblical Christianity.
I’ve been saying for years that Smith took every Bible doctrine, and turned it on its proverbial head. While I had no ‘proof’ from the Church he actually did so, the new revelations they pour forth ad nausea, were proof enough. Until now, that is.
We must ask – how is this a ‘restoration’? Keeping that question in mind, let’s look at the Church’s defense for what Smith did. Because of the length of their article, we’re limiting our time to just a few noteworthy comments they made. However, we highly recommend you read it in full when you can because it’s definitely an eye opening example of how Smith trashed the word of God without a second thought. Here we go –
The doctrines Joseph Smith taught do several things. They clarify scripture; they restore knowledge that had been revealed ages ago but had become lost or corrupted; they provide new knowledge; and they organize his many insights into a broad vision of eternity.
Smith’s ‘restoration’ did several things alright, but clarifying scripture wasn’t one of them! They provided new material from Smith’s imagination of what he imagined life here and in heaven would be like. However, in no way, shape, or form, do any of his theories line up with biblical standards of what God has already revealed.
Many of the Prophet’s teachings amazed and surprised others, revealing things that they had never before supposed.
The effects of living in the 21st century have in many ways, cheapened the value of life in general. People don’t put a lot of value on the human soul as they once did, and the shock value of what once was, is long gone.
Chipping away at our sensibilities are the constant stream of lies perpetuated by the media, or anyone with a soapbox with which to stand upon. Even the Church agrees we’ve forgotten what once was. Joseph Smith in part, is to blame for the downward spiraling of truth.
The effects of time and familiarity lead us to forget how “directly contrary and opposed to” prevailing notions some of the revelations were. Joseph Smith, however, perceived their profound import. He said, “I calculate to be one of the instruments of setting up the kingdom of Daniel by the word of the Lord, and I intend to lay a foundation that will revolutionize the whole world.” 3 (See Dan. 2:44–45.)
Imagine sitting in an audience back then and hearing Smith’s barrage of blasphemous doctrines! It’s shocking to the Christians of today who know the truth, and I would imagine it was even more so back then.
They seem to be proud of this. Why is that?
…In some cases, the insights Joseph received were highly original for his time; in other cases, he reshaped or validated common ideas…
This much is quite obvious.
It is not surprising that the true knowledge of God would be one of Satan’s prime targets and one of the first fundamental doctrines to be lost.
They’re spot on with that statement. One of Satan’s prime targets is indeed the true knowledge of God. He’ll do whatever it takes to malign the Lord, and twist the truth.
With the loss of the priesthood held by the original Apostles, the “key of the knowledge of God” (D&C 84:19), or “the fulness of the scriptures” (JST, Luke 11:53), was gone. That key was restored through Joseph Smith…
There’s no such thing as a ‘key of the knowledge of God’. The Bible contains all there is to know about Him! The apostles couldn’t have held the priesthood because they weren’t qualified to do so, hence Jesus’ ministry to teach the apostles the fullness of time had come.
…Joseph Smith said, “At the first organization in heaven, we were all present and saw the Savior chosen and appointed and the plan of salvation made, and we sanctioned it.” 25 (See Words of Joseph Smith, p. 60.)
Anything and everything about man being in the pre-existence with God and Jesus is a lie.
Furthermore, Jesus was not chosen to be the Savior of the world! He’s God, and designed it to be that way Himself. Thinking that He needed our approval is blasphemy!
…we know that spirit bodies are procreated by resurrected, exalted couples who have “a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.” (D&C 132:19.) Spirits are “begotten and born of heavenly parents, and reared to maturity in the eternal mansions of the Father.” 31 …(See The Improvement Era, Vol. 13, No. 1, November 1909, p. 80)
This too, is a lie. Women won’t be eternally pregnant, and mankind won’t become gods. PTL, thank You Jesus!
And that folks in a nutshell, are just some of Smith’s contributions to the world. Wow. Scary would be an understatement, and a restoration doesn’t come close to qualifying what Smith left as a legacy.
It’s amazing they have the audacity to perpetuate Smith’s lies with nary a concern for anyone’s life, let alone their own. May the Lord have mercy on them, and open their eyes!