Thursday, December 20, 2018

Answering The Mormon Claim Of Total Apostasy

  • Introduction:
          -Mormonism: a religious cult that was founded by Joseph Smith in the woods of Palmyra, New York in the year 1821. He claimed that God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ appeared to him and told him to establish a completely new church. In other words, he had visions that told him to start a new religion.
          -Smith claimed that the "Angel Moroni" gave him some golden "Nephi Plates" so that he could translate them into English. This religious text is known as the Book of Mormon. The three other religious texts use by the Mormons are the King James Version, Pearl of Great Price, and the Doctrine and Covenants.
          -The Mormon Church claims that the entire Christian church and the Bible have been totally corrupted. Thus, its alleged purpose is to restore the church back to the original teachings of Jesus Christ and the apostles.
  • Is A Total Apostasy Of The Christian Church Possible?:
          -Jesus Christ specifically taught that the gates of hell would never prevail against His church (Matthew 16:18). Paul said that God would be eternally glorified in Christ and His saints (Ephesians 3:21). If the Mormon Church is correct, then God must be a liar. May that never be. God has always preserved His faithful remnant. While the Bible does speak of the coming of false teachers, it nowhere mentions a total apostasy.
          -The Words of the Lord are incorruptible. His Word shall endure forever (Isaiah 40:8; Proverbs 30:5-6; 1 Peter 1:23-25). The Scripture cannot be broken (John 10:35). It is simply not possible for the Bible to be lost and forgotten. Those who present strange doctrine are to be deemed heretics (1 Timothy 1:3-4; 2 John 9-11). The faith has been delivered to the saints "once for all" (Jude 3). Thus, there is no need for new revelations. Angelic visions are not an acceptable method of drawing attention to oneself (Colossians 2:18).
          -The Apostle Paul in Galatians 1:8-9 wrote a categorical condemnation of any different gospels that could arise in the future after his death. He even issued an anathema to angels who could theoretically arrive to preach differently from the doctrine originally delivered by the apostles. So, even granting that Joseph Smith had an encounter with the Angel Moroni, Mormonism is a false religion because it preaches a different message of salvation. According to Paul, another gospel is no gospel at all (Galatians 1:6-7). The gospel never needed to be restored because it was never lost to begin with. Mormon revelation is not of divine but human origin. The simple, true gospel involves placing trust in the finished work of Jesus Christ alone. We are not saved by obeying various laws, ordinances, and attending temple ceremonies (Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8-9).
          -It is one thing to say that the church has become unrecognizably dirty throughout history, but it is quite another to claim that the church disappeared completely from the face of the earth. The possibility of such a claim is ruled out by Scripture itself. 
  • The Mormon Claim Of Being The Complete Restoration Of Lost Truth Is Unfounded:
          -An essential question that needs to be addressed is, "When did the Christian church go into the state of total apostasy?" There has always been a unanimous consensus on what constitutes the essential doctrines of the Christian faith in the earliest church creeds. The New Testament is supported by thousands of different manuscripts. It is almost one hundred percent textually pure. The creed summarizing the gospel message that the Apostle Paul recounted in 1 Corinthians 15:1-8 has been dated back to the first century, thereby proving that the gospel has not been lost or altered.
          -Why would Mormons use the Bible at all, since they maintain that the whole of Christianity was lost in the first century and the canon was assembled (along with the King James Version being produced in the seventeenth century) by an allegedly apostate church? Which parts of the Bible have been corrupted?
          -If any of Joseph Smith's claims regarding the alleged total apostasy of Christendom were true, then he should have been able to give an extensive list of all of the original teachings of Jesus Christ, where every denomination had went wrong, provide the exact date of when Christianity went extinct, and go back to the original teachings of Jesus and the apostles. He should have been able to refer to established facts, writings, history, etc. However, Joseph Smith never took the time to verify any of his claims.

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