Comments about ‘Praise: Honoring God for his word in Salt Lake City — National Bible City 2013’

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Published: Saturday, Nov. 23 2013 5:00 a.m. MST

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MrNirom1
Aloha, OR

Whenever scripture is read.. the learning process begins. While reading about God and what he wants from us, we can see that there is love there. So much love even when were are not doing that which we should.. lessons are taught and we are shaped. The more we read about God and his dealings with mankind.. the more we think about him. Which in turn brings us closer to knowing him. He already knows us.. but all scripture is for us to get to know him.

Christ put it in his intercessory prayer: 3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. (John 17:3)

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Whenever scripture is read, you have to ask yourself..."what does that mean? It's vague, obsolete language couching a narrative that is incomprehensible. It says so little, it could mean anything, yet believers expect it to be enforced as if it were as indisputable as a mortgage contract. Wars have been started, guilt has stricken millions, and untold numbers of children mercilessly beaten based on this work of plagiarism and fiction. We aren't necessarily 'honoured' in this case, but there still could be harry potter readings at the library.

JLFuller
Boise, ID

Maybe the minimum regular readers get from reading the bible is a change of heart. Some folks believe the bible is absolutely perfect in every way. If that helps them change their thinking and thereby their behavior then so be it. Others look at the bible as a portal through which we find wisdom even in the book's imperfections. However if you only look for weakness and imperfection then that is all you will find.

Shelama
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

The Bible is so important in the history of the world, particularly the West, that we should have mandatory study of the Bible in our public schools. Not the "teaching" of the Bible, but honest, serious, informed, critical study. Not as "God's word" but simply as an ancient, man-made text without special status or privilege. Same way other important subjects are studied.

Utah should be honored to start such a nation-wide movement.

Although that approach led me, personally, to leave Christianity and Mormonism, that would not be the point. More importantly, it left me with a greater love for the Bible. and a hugely expanded appreciation of the challenging investigation of the men – and possibly women – who wrote it (when, where and why), combined & compiled it, edited & redacted it, and who changed, used, interpreted, adapted, and translated & transmitted it.

By the time they've graduated from high school our students should be in a much better position of informed, personal accountability to form their own conclusions about what the Bible is and what it's not.

Dennis
Harwich, MA

Why does "God" need to be honored?
He's God. He doesn't "need" anything.

MrNirom1
Portland, OR

Whenever scripture is read.. What does that mean? asks a non believer who then begins a critical narrative comparing words written about God and his dealings with mankind to a mere mortgage contract.. which can easily be walked away from.

No.. mankind is not perfect, and thus the reason God gave man scripture. But even though he gave him the messages he wanted him to have he also left him with his free agency to choose good over evil. And the non believer is right. Some have chosen unwisely. But as much as this non believer would like to blame it all on the scripture for the woes of the world like children being beaten mercilessly and the guilt stricken millions feeling bad for what they have done,(hopefully for beating their children) Harry Potter seems to be the go to book in this persons mind. I am sure that if Harry Potter readings were what people turned to, there would be many who would abuse those words as well. Fantasy and fiction? Ah.. they day does come when all will be revealed and many unbelievers will be so surprised to find what they called fiction is real. Whoops!

Tekakaromatagi
Dammam, Saudi Arabia

I agree the Bible is written in riddles in some places. But the people who wrote it weren't thinking with a modern 21st century paradigm where we expect that if we plop down a bunch of money at a university to take a course where we are spoon-fed knowledge then we will have the knowledge. In their paradigm (as in many other non-traditional societies) knowledge is sacred. You have to make some sort of an effort. With the Bible if you dig around in some simple stuff like the Four Gospels, you can get started and get some understanding. If you have the desire you'll eventually be seeing the outline and structure in Isaiah or Hebrews.

It is a lot easier than reading poems and stories in a dead language that were handed down orally for hundreds of years because the people couldn't write until the 1800's (which is a hobby of mine), or interpreting Mayan glyphs in a Guatemalan jungle.

donn
layton, UT

No ancient literature has survived in its original form; everything we have is derived from copies of the originals. The NT is no exception. However, in comparison with any other ancient literature, the NT is without a peer—both in terms of the chronological proximity and the surviving number. Several ancient authorities are preserved in only a handful of manuscripts. Not so with the NT. There are approximately 5,500 Greek witnesses, ranging in date from the second century AD into the middle ages. 1,000,000 quotations from the NT in the church Fathers.

NT textual criticism has always had an embarrassment of riches unparalleled in any other field.
The original text can be reconstructed 99% accuracy. There is a distinction between the text and the truth of the text. While we have 99% of the original text, 100 % of the truth comes through.

The quotes from the(2nd c)disciples of the apostles and early church fathers can reconstruct the N.T. less 11 verses.

The original articles of faith. #8 We believe in the Word of God recorded in the Bible; we also believe the Word of God recorded in the Book of Mormon,...

oldschool
Farmington, UT

Why is it that many ex-Mormons feel it is their duty to denigrate the beliefs of others and to mock Mormons and often other Christians at every opportunity? They obviously have rejected Joseph Smith's 11th Article of Faith: "We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may." If you want to worship Mother Earth or Satan or Allah, go ahead. Just leave Christians alone.

Shelama
SALT LAKE CITY, UT

@donn
layton, UT

Unfortunately, none of that supports one word or story of the Bible as divine, or divinely inspired, and not of purely human invention.

Even the profs at BYU-Neal Maxwell and the apologists at FAIR will admit that, based on the common body of evidence, that it would be reasonable and rational and defensible to conclude that the Bible is totally a creation of Homo sapiens sapiens.

G L W8
SPRINGVILLE, UT

It's an honor for Salt Lake City, headquarters of the LDS Church, to be chosen for a non-denominational Judeo-Christian gathering such as this. The fact that non-LDS clergy promoted this celebration and that it involves both LDS and Non-LDS presenters is indicative of the good will that we're attempting to achieve in our State of Utah. We can all each value our own holy works separately, be they the Book of Mormon, the Quran, even Native American ceremonialism, with value to our individual selves. But I hope we'd be respectful of the right and opportunity to learn from such an important work that has so obviously affected the history of mankind. The Bible has promoted much good, in spite of associated problems arising from evil or misguided interpretations of some historical figures. I plead for us to give the celebration the respect it deserves.

Semi-Strong
Louisville, KY

Donn (and I assume Sharrona since he/she used the same post nearly word for word)

Please cite your reference the changed article of faith.

As far as I know, the Wentworth Letter is the earliest source document here. Per the document on Project Gutenberg, the text is as follows:

"We believe the bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God."

We have gone over this issue before so I would like some clarity here and to fully settle this issue.

G L W8
SPRINGVILLE, UT

Joseph Smith was warned early on about certain tricks that would be used to attempt to discredit his work. When the 116 pages of his manuscript were lost, he was told, in essence, that alterations would be made; then his gift of translation would be questioned. Today, that comes in the form of spin, redaction, quoting secondary sources or gossip, selective editing, proof-texting, begging the question, non-sequiturs, red herrings, cherry-picking history, twisted interpretations of ancient documents and languages, etc. The list goes on ad infinitum. In Utah particularly, it seems like we can't have a discussion on a general story about religion without the LDS critics chiming in.

Ranch
Here, UT

You honor a ficitonal being for saying nothing. Interesting.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

@Ranch – “You honor a ficitonal being for saying nothing. Interesting.”

I don’t get it either…

The Bible does not contains anything that could not have been known by people living in the 1st century – nothing about computation, electricity, chemistry, how life (really) began, disease, the world, our solar system, etc., etc., etc…

On top of that – since many will say it was not meant to provide facts about the natural world – it is claimed to be our only guide to absolute morality and yet it contains far more moral relativism than is found in similar wise books of that era (e.g., Aristotle, Confucius, Buddha). In fact the only absolute (true for all time) moral directive I can find in the Bible is, obey God no matter what he says.

We’re taught to revere this book from a young age and yet when I read it as an adult, employing the same rational & critical faculties I would with any book, it simply did not measure up to the hype – granted, when you claim the Big Guy upstairs wrote it that’s a lot to measure up to.

donn
layton, UT

RE: Shelama, What makes the (Biblos)Bible Holy=(hagios G. Separated) from other good books is prophecy. There are over 300 prophecies alone, about Jesus Christ in the O. T., that are fulfilled in the N.T.. No other logical reason than by divine origin.

RE: Semi-Strong, Please cite your reference the changed article of faith.

The "A of F" as published at the back of the LDS scripture, P. of G. P, have under gone a number of changes through the years. In 1841 Orson Pratt published a pamphlet entitled An Interesting Account of Several Remarkable Visions. This pamphlet was the forerunner to J S's "As of F.". Smith reworked Pratt's statement and published the revised text,with 13, in the Times and Seasons. In 1850 Orson Hyde published another revised list of articles in the Frontier Guardian. Hyde's account listed “14 articles”. This is the one that was reproduced in Joseph Smith Begins His Work, Vol. 2.

Current #8 “… as it is translated correctly ..." IF that is a true statement, like snow is white? There are many modern Bible translations today. Or I can literally translate Biblical (Koine) Greek for you.

donn
layton, UT

RE: Shelama, What makes the (Biblos)Bible Holy=( hagios G., Separated ) from other good books is prophecy. There are over 300 prophecies alone, about Jesus Christ in the O. T., that are fulfilled in the N.T., No other logical reason than by divine origin.

RE Tyler, But if you don’t believe me when I tell you about earthly things, how can you possibly believe if I tell you about heavenly things. (John 3:12)

If men will not believe the “earthly things” of the Bible (Creation, Flood, dispersion, etc.), which human records and research can verify, then why should they believe the “heavenly things” it speaks about (salvation, heaven, eternal life, etc.) which must be accepted strictly on faith.

RE: Semi-Strong, I’ve tried to respond several times, but censored.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

@donn – “No other logical reason than by divine origin”

You mean there’s no way the writers of the NT could have conformed their story to match what was “predicted” in the OT? Just not possible… had to be divine?

@donn – “But if you don’t believe me when I tell you about earthly things, how can you possibly believe if I tell you about heavenly things.”

So if you (the Bible) tell me all sorts earthly things that turn out to be untrue (creation, flood, etc.), how do you possibly expect me to believe you about things we have no way of proving?

When I was a child I spoke about and believed childish things; when I became a man I put away childish things (e.g. credulity).

Semi-Strong
Louisville, KY

donn,

No need to use URLs, just the precise document names. Note that there are many recitations of things like the articles of faith by others that have many variations. These are not at issue. Also, there are "history" books that cite the precise text you do but these do not appear to have any original source behind them.

I am only concerned with whether you have a citable source for a change in the Articles of Faith as accepted by the LDS as they appear in the Pearl of Great Price.

donn
layton, UT

Tyler, Jesus fulfills the meaning of Jewish feasts?"

The first 4 of the 7 feasts occur during the springtime (Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, and Weeks) they have already been fulfilled by Christ in the N. T..

1) Passover (Lev 23:5) – the Messiah as our Passover lamb (1 Cor 5:7) whose blood would be shed for our sins. Jesus was crucified on the day of preparation for the Passover at the same hour that the lambs were being slaughtered for the Passover meal that evening.

2) Unleavened Bread (Lev 23:6) – the Messiah's sinless life (as leaven is a picture of sin in the Bible), making Him the perfect sacrifice for our sins. Jesus' body was in the grave during the first days of this feast, like a kernel of wheat planted and waiting to burst forth as “the bread of life”.

3) First Fruits (Lev 23:10) – the resurrection as the first fruits of the righteous. Jesus was resurrected on this very day, one of the reasons that Paul, 1 Cor 15:20 as the "first fruits from the dead."

4) Weeks or Pentecost (Lev 23:16) –(see Acts 2).

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