Godless Leaders (2 of 5) by Stephen Whitney
This content is part of a series.Godless Leaders (2 of 5)
Series: II Timothy 3
II Timothy 3:6-9
Joseph Smith grew up in western New York in the 1800's where they had several religious revivals during his early years. Like many people of that era, his parents and his grandfather reportedly had visions or dreams that they believed communicated messages from God. Because of the religious divisions in his family and community, Smith was conflicted about the benefit of organized religion, saying that he had become concerned for the welfare of his soul but was confused by different religious denominations.
Smith later recalled having a vision from God around 1820 that resolved his sense of religious confusion and personal questions. Praying in a wooded area near his home, he said he saw a vision in which God told him his sins were forgiven, and that all contemporary churches had "turned aside from the gospel."
In 1823, Smith said that while praying at night for forgiveness from his sins, he was visited by an angel named Moroni, who revealed the location of a buried book of golden plates. In 1830, he published what he said was an English translation of these plates as the Book of Mormon which he claimed was a Judeo-Christian history of ancient American civilization. As a result he organized the Church of Christ as a restoration of the early Christian church whose members were called Latter Day Saints.
Some of his false teaching includes:
1. A continuation of the Melchizedek and Aaronic OT priesthoods which gave those men special power and authority like the NT apostles to oversee the church.
2. A "New and Everlasting Covenant" that superseded all earthly bonds so that marriage on earth is eternal in heaven and that the highest exaltation is plural marriage. Plural marriage allowed an individual to transcend the angelic state and become a god.
3. There are three Gods, the Eternal Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, but are not of one substance or in one perso ...
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