Comments about ‘Mormon apologetics group announces new name’

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Published: Monday, Aug. 26 2013 3:25 p.m. MDT

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Christopher B
Ogden, UT

Here is one serious flaw in Mormons claims.

Either their prophets speak for God or they don't. Either God is wrong sometimes or he isn't.

Mormon prophets have made several flat out WRONG predictions over the years. I'm happy to list a few if you would like(and assuming the moderators post them)

Mormons can't claim their prophets speak for God and then one by one retroactively say "he was speaking as a man that time" whenever the prophets statements turn out to be controversial, or flat out wrong.

And if I'm not mistaken Mormons believe all Mormon apostles by being "prophets seers revelators" also speak for God. So really once an apostle become an apostle, he will never say something incorrectly again as it relates to religion correct?

Topeno, Finland

Dear Christopher,
"thus sayeth the Laord" is what the prophet says.
But, the main thing is that my testimony is not dependent on others...sayings/actions, but in my love to my Savior and redeemer

Falconer, NY

Christopher B: you expect to much from a human called to be a Prophet. "he will never say something incorrectly again as it relates to religion correct?" is a false and unrealistic expectation. No one has a perfect knowledge and understanding of God and His Kingdom nor His creations. Not even a prophet. Everyone's understandings and ability to articulate those and being understood by others is limited by the human condition. We all live by faith, even the Prophets.

If I recall correctly, Joseph Smith, even after being called a Prophet, still asked questions and did not understand all that God said. What you say, Christopher B, is inaccurate mixed with a little truth. This is what leads us astray.

Somewhere in Time, UT

Christopher B:

This is where spiritual maturity comes into play. Those who want to find truth must be willing to be humble and become spiritually mature. To expect prophets to be perfect would be to deny them their own opportunity for growth along their own journey and it would disqualify pretty much all the prophets of the Bible since many of them made mistakes according to scripture.

The LDS Church has NEVER made the claim of infallibility. Joseph Smith never claimed to be infallible and no subsequent president has made that claim.

And..predictions are not the criteria of a prophet. Prophets are not fortune tellers. Some general authorities have at times expressed personal opinions which are their own and do not speak for God. A prophet is only a prophet when actually speaking at the direction and by the power of God. Proclamations are only valid when they come from the full First Presidency and Quorum of the twelve.

We need to be spiritually mature enough to understand that we walk by faith and learn line upon line with the counsel from prophets who are directed by God for our benefit.

Christopher B
Ogden, UT

And if you're still holding to the "prophets speaking as a man" argument, how do you know when he is speaking as a man or for God?

Or do you have to wait to see if the statement ever becomes controversial to then backdate your claim that "he was only speaking for man" at that time. But everything going forward its for God. Until something else becomes controversial/wrong.

Christopher B
Ogden, UT

maclouie, so when your members say your prophets speak for God, how do you know when they are doing so?


"A prophet is only a prophet when actually speaking at the direction and by the power of God."

And how do you know when this is the case?

Don't blame me.

You Mormons are the ones who continually remind us non-Mormons that your prophets speak for God.

So when do they and when don't they?

And how do you know? Is it retroactive when something doesn't turn out right?

Still now answering the question.

sandy, ut

The prophet sees god and talks to him, yet doesn't have a clear understanding. The prophet speaks for god so we must obey him... unless the next prophet says something different. This is the whole problem with claiming they are prophets and that they speak to god - they are putting those unrealistic expectations on themselves. If they would come out and admit they don't talk to god, and they get inspiration from the spirit like any good catholic or methodist then there would be no unrealistic expectations. The minute they say they are prophets or that they talk to god all bets are off and the expectations are naturally raised. If they really are prophets wouldn't it make sense to hold them to a higher standard then a leader of another religion who claims no such thing?

Los Angeles, CA

I seldom agree with Chris B, but he has a point here. How do we know what to believe without hindsight? I can flip a coin and be right 50% of the time. Also, why all the whitewashing of past history (like Polyandry)?

Mister J
Salt Lake City, UT

re: Cats

"Those who want to find truth must be willing to be humble and become spiritually mature."

Is it really when you believe in the supernatural that others expect you to believe in?

"The LDS Church has NEVER made the claim of infallibility."

Does the claim 'we are the only true church on the face of the earth' lean toward infallibility or would that be just pride/arrogance?

sandy, ut

I am pretty sure that this organization can't defend all of the holes in doctrine and history.

Samuel B Martineau
Bountiful, UT

Christopher B

If you are really interested in understanding the doctrine of the LDS church and what constitutes doctrine as opposed to individual interpretation, etc. I would refer you to an excellent talk given by Elder Neil L. Andersen called "Trial of Your Faith." There is a section around the middle which gives some clear instruction on that matter. Among other things, he points out that

"The doctrine is taught by all 15 members of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve. It is not hidden in an obscure paragraph of one talk. True principles are taught frequently and by many. Our doctrine is not difficult to find."

I will simply add, that I don't understand everything about revelation, how it works, when the prophet speaks for himself, etc. But I do have a testimony of the truth of the church.

In addition, your arguments don't just work against the LDS church. They would discount all revealed religion. It is a lot easier to believe in Moses when you don't live with him day to day, but someone had to at some point, and yet they believed.

Samuel B Martineau
Bountiful, UT


I agree that it would be more convenient for the church to not make prophetic claims. They wouldn't have "expectations" as you say.

But it doesn't seem like much of a position to claim that there were prophets in the past who were vehicles of revealed religion. That people back then should have listened and obeyed even though, in the end, the prophets were men like any other men. And then say that today we shouldn't have to do the same thing because that would make us expect too much of our leaders and we might feel that they didn't live up.

Religion isn't about what is convenient to believe. Why is it any more convenient to believe that a man died, rose three days later, and in the process saved the world from their sins?

Finally, it is easy to say things like "I am pretty sure that this organization can't defend all of the holes in doctrine and history." I could say the same thing about any church with little cost to myself.

Boise, ID

Doesn't seem the sole conversation going on in the comments regarding Christopher B's poignant doubts has much to do with the article. However, I bet he could potentially gain a lot by reflecting upon the subjects covered by FAIR Mormon with an open mind and open heart. Or he could just say the same thing over and over.

He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward.

Henry Drummond
San Jose, CA

I hope this proves to be a continuation of the changes I've seen over the last several years in Mormon Apologetics. I think if the article is right and these organizations are putting behind them the "militant" approach to apologetics, it will be far more effective. I think in the past these organizations spent way too much time criticizing the character of the critic at the expense of engaging the issues at hand. I look forward to revisiting their site.

sandy, ut

Samuel B Martineau

I agree - that statement applies to all religions, but this article was about the LDS defenders of the faith so that is why I mentioned it. But no other church so arrogantly claims that they are the one true church, as the mormon church does. It is like they are begging to be questioned, but when they are questioned they don't like it.

Lethbridge, 00

Christopher B, I would echo what Samuel B said, read Elder Andersen's talk, if you really want to know the truth, and not just fight, then that would help you understand. How do we know when what they say is true? Simple. We know the same way that we know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, we know the same way that we know that the Book of Mormon is true, and we know the same way that we know that God hears and answers our sincere prayers. We know by the power of the Holy Ghost. Faith and doubt cannot coexist. You can have faith, and still ask hard questions, and when you do so in faith, you will profit from the answers to those questions. If you ask with doubt, nothing believing, well, you're out of luck. Almost nothing will satisfy you, it will only whet your taste for conflict.

Phoenix, AZ

So why would anyone listen to, or believe, a Mormon spokesman over a Catholic spokesman or any other spokesman including TV talking heads. Beware of dogma. If one can't find the answer with reason then there is good reason to question its reality. Anyone who claims to know, walk and talk with god should be viewed with great caution.

Lethbridge, 00

As for me, I've read a lot of the trash that's been thrown at past prophets. True, some of what they said was just not true. But you know what? The Church is still true. Why? Because we don't have faith in Joseph Smith, or Brigham Young, or Wilford Woodruff, or Thomas S. Monson. We have faith in Jesus Christ. Men, even prophets, cannot save us, or change our hearts to be more pure and obedient. They can only lead us. But Christ can change us, He can change our hearts, I've experienced it myself, I am not the same person I used to be, I am a much better and happier person.

Lethbridge, 00

Bitterness, anger and holding grudges does not bring peace, and it makes many things hard to understand or accept. How can we recognize the truth, if we are blinded by our own bitterness, indifference, or perceived injustices wrought upon us? I know that President Monson is a prophet, and I know that because I sincerely asked God if he really was, and I got an answer. No one can convert you, or change your mind or ways of thinking, except you. I know for myself that it is true.

Far East USA, SC

Gotta agree with Chris B.

If I were a believing Mormon, I would be asking constantly. "Is this your Opinion, or are you speaking Gods words"

Because otherwise, it would just be the advice of a wise person. And not all advice from wise people is sound.

And also, I have see the use of Religion as a way to control people. If you can convince someone your words came directly from God, it would carry much more weight. It would most likely be followed. Opinions? Not so much.

Yes, I am skeptical. And with reason.

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