LDS Articles of Faith, Part XLVII
Article Nine, Latter-day Revelation, Part 5
The ninth LDS Article of Faith says, “We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.” It is easy to say you believe something, but it is more difficult to explain why you believe it. Mormons are told their Church is led by a prophet, so that is their usual answer when asked why they believe their nineth Article of Faith. But how do LDS know that their president is a true prophet? It is not because they saw his prophecies fulfilled because no LDS prophet has prophesied any future event since the 1800’s and most of those were false, even those by LDS founder Joseph Smith! Some LDS say they prayed about it and had a warm feeling in their bosom. But people often get good feelings about bad things! So, feelings are not a good test for truth! How do LDS prophets become prophets? Joseph Smith said he was visited by God, Christ, the Angel Moroni, resurrected apostles of Christ, OT prophets etc. and they appointed him to restore the true church. He didn’t have witnesses for those claims, so his word is the only evidence for those events. Smith indicated those events qualified him to be a prophet. All LDS prophets who followed Smith became prophets in a different way. When an LDS prophet dies now, the apostle who has been one of the twelve living LDS apostles the longest, becomes the new LDS prophet.
LDS say they have prophets today because God does the things today the same way He has always done them and God had prophets in Old Testament days, so He has them now. But how did Old Testament prophets become prophets? There were no apostles to choose from and the people didn’t vote to sustain them as prophets. In fact, Jeremiah and other prophets were rejected by both the people and their leaders! Those prophets were prophets because their message came from God, not because they were the senior apostle or were sustained by a vote of the people like LDS prophets. Heb. 1:1-2 says God spoke in the past at different times and in different ways by prophets, but now He has spoken to us through His Son. In John 12:48 Jesus said the word He already spoke will judge man in the last day. No LDS prophet or anyone else can add anything of value to what Christ said and did for us!
Our last blog gave examples of two practices that were taught by LDS prophets until pressure from the government and society forced them to change. One was polygamy and the other was that the Negroid race were cursed with a black skin and unworthy of the LDS priesthood. To end polygamy, LDS prophet Woodruff told members to obey the law of the land, but he didn’t say polygamy was wrong. So, some LDS men still have more than one wife sealed to them for all eternity in LDS Temple ceremonies and several Mormon polygamist offshoots exist. Utah recently decriminalized polygamy, so more people may soon become polygamists.
Our last blog quoted President Joseph Fielding Smith’s teachings about the Negroid race which said they were cursed with a black skin because they weren’t valiant during the war in the premortal spirit world. The Gospel Topics article on the LDS website says the LDS view of the Negroid race was changed because Brigham Young was the first LDS leader to express the view that the Negroid race was cursed. He did teach it, but he was not the first Mormon to teach it. Joseph Smith said the book of Moses in the Pearl of Great Price (P. of G. P) was revealed to him and Moses 7:8 says the land of Canaan was cursed and blackness came upon the children of Canaan. Moses7:22 also says, “the seed of Cain were black.” Smith also said he “translated” the book of Abraham in the P. of G.P from some Egyptian papyri. Abraham 1:2-26 says from Ham sprang that race that preserved the curse and he and his descendants were cursed pertaining to the priesthood. Prior to Kimball’s “revelation,” many LDS used those verses to justify their view of the Negroid race. Now it looks like they want to protect their founding prophet, so they say it was Brigham Young’s idea. Even if that was true, Brigham Young was an LDS prophet who was supposed to be teaching God’s word. LDS President, Wilford Woodruff, who gave the Manifesto about polygamy, also said, “The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as President of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the programme. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that, the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so He will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty.” That statement follows Woodruff’s Manifesto in the D. & C. By putting it in the D. & C. LDS authorities have given it “scriptural status!” Was LDS President Woodruff telling the truth when he said that? LDS leaders must believe he was, or it wouldn’t be in the D. & C.! If it is true, why did Brigham Young and at least ten other LDS prophets teach the false doctrine about the Negroid race? They should all have been removed from office according to Woodruff’s statement! The Gospel Topics article on the LDS website says American culture and many churches and organizations held views about the Negroid race being cursed and LDS leaders were possibly influenced by them. Even if that is true, it does not excuse the LDS prophets who taught it because they claim to have a special contact with God that no one else has! Did God fail to give them constant, current, revelation or didn’t LDS leaders hear His message?
On September 30, 1978, LDS President Kimball’s statement allowing all worthy men (including the Negroid race) to have LDS priesthood was read at the semiannual LDS Conference and a Church vote was taken to accept his June 8, 1978 revelation as Church doctrine. Nathan Tanner, the First Counselor in the First Presidency, then read a letter from Kimball about his “revelation.” In it he said, “We have pleaded long and earnestly in behalf of these, our faithful brethren, spending many hours in the Upper Room of the Temple supplicating the Lord for divine guidance.” That may sound spiritual to some, but it sounds like Kimball was more compassionate than the Lord who created all men! If LDS prophets receive constant, current revelation, why did it take 148 years for them to discover that all men are created equal?
LDS say Amos 3:7 means a prophet is needed today, and their Church is led by a prophet. But Amos 3:7 says, “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets.” In the context of that verse, Amos was preaching God’s judgment on Israeland the surrounding cities, and he said God wouldn’t destroy Israel without revealing the coming judgment to His prophets. Read LDS history and notice how many times LDS prophets did not know what God was doing. If the LDS interpretation of Amos 3:7 is true, why didn’t LDS prophets prepare them for the bad things that happened to them? Their own history shows their interpretation of Amos 3:7 is false!
We will continue our discussion of Latter-day revelation next time