Tuesday, 15 April 2014

If Jesus Christ suffered for all my sins, why than do I need to change?

When Jesus Christ came to earth he lived a perfect life he is God's only perfect son and because of this he was the only one who was capable of paying for our sins. And he did, he paid the price for every sin that has ever been committed. He suffered and died so that we would not have to pay a debt that we cannot pay. His suffering in Gethsemane and on the Cross of Calvary he suffered and died for the sins of all the earth.

Without his sacrifice it would be impossible for any of us to make it back to God, as Paul puts it so simply in Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;" and so we all rely Completely upon the grace of God for our salvation.

So than why do we need to do anything? if we are saved by the gift and grace of God?  The prophet Alma taught (Alma 34:32) that this life is our time to perform our labors and prepare to meet God. So by keeping God's commandments we are learning what it is like living in the presence of God. Of course we make mistakes every day, but as we continually seek to obey God we will get better and become more like our savior Jesus Christ.

The prophet Nephi (2 Nephi 10:23-25) taught that we are free to choose our own actions, weather we choose to follow God and Jesus Christ through keeping the commandments which they have given us. And than when we have tried to follow God is is only through his grace that we are saved just like as paul taught in Ephesians 2:8-9 that we are saved by grace, and that our own works are not what saves us but Christ.

And most importantly is that we remember the words of Jesus Christ to his apostles in John 14:15. Which simply states "If ye love me, keep my commandments."  I don't think there is any more reason needed than that for us to try our best to obey the commandments of God.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Why do Mormons talk so much about family history?

So, one of the things about this church is that doing family history research is a part of our set of beliefs and values, but why?

Family history is all about finding your ancestors and seeing where you come from, from doing this you can learn allot about your heritage such as where your family comes from and how they ended up where they are today. If you look at the Bible you will see that not only is it a record of what God did with his people but it is also a record of family history. as early as Genesis 4 there has been a record of where people come from.

and than the last two verses in the Old Testament (Malachi 4:5-6) it says:
5 ¶Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord:
6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. Turning the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers is what family history is all about.

Finding out where you come from is only part of the reason for doing this, The other part is about salvation through Jesus Christ. This salvation is not just for those that are alive today but for everyone who has ever lived on the earth and ever will live here. 1 Corinthians 15:29 Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead? And so Paul is teaching here, is asking the question why do they baptize for people who are dead, if we will not be resurrected?

This is because salvation is available to everyone, and baptism is an essential part of us becoming cleansed through Jesus Christ. and so, by looking for our family who have passed on we are able to bring people to Jesus Christ, and provide them with the opportunity to accept his sacrifice. This does not stop them saying no to him of course but it does provide everyone a chance to become reborn in him.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Do Mormons practice Polygamy?

In 1843 (13 years after the church was established) Joseph Smith received revelation, regarding the importance of marriage and how it can continue after death and is a part of heavenly life. In addition to this Joseph was also commanded to introduce the practice of polygamy, for the purpose of being sealed together for time and eternity. These revelations can be found in Doctrine and Covenants sections 131 and 132.

The practice of Polygamy within the church was stopped in 1890 by the prophet Lorenzo Snow. This can be read in Official Declaration 1. Where the prophet prayed about the circumstances that the church were facing and as answer to their prayers were told to stop, With the statement by president Woodruff  "But I want to say this: I should have let all the temples go out of our hands; I should have gone to prison myself, and let every other man go there, had not the God of heaven commanded me to do what I did do; and when the hour came that I was commanded to do that, it was all clear to me. I went before the Lord, and I wrote what the Lord told me to write."

Now, many people today view Polygamy as a bad thing, and without being commanded by God it is. Throughout the Bible Polygamy has been a common practice with prophets like Abraham, Moses, King David and King Solomon being just a few of them. If you read in Genesis 29 and Genesis 30 You will read that the 12 tribes of Israel came from Jacob marrying 4 different women. So you can see that with God's permission the practice is permitted.

The social taboo on Polygamy is completely understandable in the society we live in it is seen as adultery. And in the revlation given to Joseph Smith he was told that without the concent from the first wife it is against God's commandments. It says this in Doctrine and Covenants 132:61.

As with all of God's commandments we may not always understand why he gives them to us. But if we prayerfully consider what we have received from Him, Pray about it and be willing to act on what God has told us than we will know what He wants for us and we will know the truth of a matter. 

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

So, There are many reason why people fall away from following God and stop coming to church. So today I thought I would help people to see that coming to church should be entirely for themselves.

The reason you should come to church is one that is both selfish and selfless. There are only two people you should be coming to church for, God and yourself. You need to come to church for God because that is what he has said to do, weather you feel you need other people to support you in your faith or not God has instructed us that we need to do this and he knows best.

The most important reason for coming to church is to take the sacrament, These emblems that represent Jesus Christ are not there just to remind us of our savior but to also renew the covenant or agreement we made at baptism to follow Jesus Christ, a sort-of fresh start every week with the goal of getting better. If you don't go to church for any other reason, this one is important enough that you should make every effort to do so.

There may be times when you are unhappy with the people who attend church or you feel you don't get along with them or want to see them, if you are not going to church because of other people, it means you are allowing them to decide your future, because they are influencing your own relationship with Jesus Christ,  They are preventing you from becoming closer to him and our heavenly father and that is not something you want, to have your own salvation put on the line.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Why should we forgive others?

Forgiveness is a wonderful thing, we all need it, we all want it and we all need to give it to other people. Whenever we do something to hurt another person we want their forgiveness, Whenever we do something that goes against God, our spirit cries for forgiveness even if we do not realize that is the cause.

We should make asking God for forgiveness a regular part of our day, for all the little mistakes we make we need to ask for forgiveness and help with these things. It is the same for other people. When we hurt another person we need to genuinely apologies for what we have done and ask for their forgiveness. By asking for forgiveness you bring relief to your soul.

So what about when someone does something that upsets you or you think i bad. Forgiving that person is essential to yourself. You see as much as we need forgiveness we also need to forgive, hatred towards another person is a vial poison that eats away at you inside, it causes you to become bitter, resentful and it can ruin any occasion. By choosing to forgive someone you let go of angry feelings towards them, you become lighter on the inside and become free, whereas if you don't it will eat you up and that will ruin your day even more.

And finally Jesus Christ taught that by the way we judge others we too will be judged. (Matthew 7:1-2) And so if we wish to have an enjoyable eternity we need to learn to forgive others. For myself I cant afford not to forgive others with all of the little mistakes I make and it is probably the same for everyone. if you are having a hard time forgiving someone, try doing something nice for that person and help them.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Why does God give us commandments?

Ever since God created man he has given us commandments to follow, When He created Adam he told him not to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of Good and evil, because he shall "Surely die" (Genesis 2:15-17)

These commandments that God has given us all have a reason, He didn't think "Oh I know, I will tell them not to murder each other because that will be fun" he gives these commandments because they will help us to live happier more fulfilling lives and not cause the world to suck for all of the other people who are living in it too.

Since God is our loving father in heaven, he wants the best for his children, he wants us to be happy and he knows how that is best achieved. Not only do these commandments help us all to live happier lives and to get along better with each other but it is through following these commandments that God blesses us. In a revelation given to Joseph Smith we learn that all blessings that come from God are dependent on our willingness to follow His commandments. (Doctrine and Covenants 130:20-21)

The commandments are also there to help us reach the final goal that God has for us, This goal is perfection. God wants us to be perfect, he also knows that we are not able to get there with our freedom to choose by simply clicking his fingers, he could make us instantly perfect and stop us making mistakes but that would also stop us making decisions for ourselves and so He has given us commandments as a stepping stone to perfection, of course we make mistakes with these commandments every day this is our nature but God is there giving us the next step on our journey to become perfect like He is perfect.

And finally these commandments are one of many ways of finding out finding our for ourselves if God is there, Jesus Christ taught if we do what he asks we will find out for ourselves (John 7:16-17) As we follow Gods commandments the world will become a better place, we will become better people and we will come to know our father in heaven better.  Hope this helps you understand why God wants to help us by giving us commandments and guidance.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

How can I develop faith in God?

There are many people out there who do not believe that God is there. Either because they were raised without any kind of belief in God as a child or any number of other reasons. And it is nice to know people who already have a belief in God but that does not always help people to find their own relationship with our Heavenly Father.

Finding faith in God and Jesus Christ is something that is personal to each one of us. And it can only be achieved by our own personal efforts. Somebody else praying for you may help but ultimately it is something that requires action and trust.

When finding a faith in God it is important to remember that God is not going to send an angel or appear to you. There are a couple of reasons why I think this is, If you keep in mind that God will judge us on how we act with the knowledge that we have, we than realize that by God giving us a miraculous apparition he removes the need for faith and gives us knowledge that he is there, and if you sin with knowing something rather than just believing something than you will be judged more firmly because you knew not just believed.

To believe something does not mean that you know 100% that it is there. It simply means that you think it is there. and when you believe something you than apply faith to find out. Faith is an action, it is taking the belief and applying it or in other words, If God has given us a commandment, than faith would be doing what God has asked us.

The more we act on what God instructs us to do in our lives the more we come to see him in our lives. We will feel the influance of the Holy Ghost more in our lives.The feelings that the Holy Ghost bring can be found in Galatians 5:22-23 The feelings of love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,Meekness, temperance. The more you follow God the more you will feel these things in your life.