Thursday, January 7, 2010
I Am A Christian
I belong to The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You may know our religion by our nickname The Mormons, but the true name of our religion is "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints". Sometimes I say I am LDS (Latter Day Saints) too. I love this church and I know it is true. I feel the Holy Ghost witness within my heart with a burning comfort feeling that it is true.
I've lived in Idaho and Utah all of my life. You might say I am pretty sheltered, because I've never been around someone who hated me because of my religion. I've never been told that I am not a Christian because I am LDS. I've heard that other religions believe we are NOT Christians, but me/myself have never been in that situation - I am sheltered.
This came to an end on Saturday when there was a knock at my door. I answered it and there was a family there to invite me to their church. This happens often. Living in Meridian Idaho has been amazing to me. There are churches of every kind on almost every corner. In Utah there are LDS churches on almost every corner but here there are a multitude of religions.
Through my life I have had many friends from many different religions and I have loved them all. I try not to get into religious discussions because there is no swaying me from the truthfulness of the gospel. I know it is true. But, on the other hand I have always respected other people to worship as they want and love them even though their belief maybe different from my own.
However as I kindly rejected his invitation to attend his church because I am already a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he started to proceed to tell me I wasn't a Christian. Wow! I didn't see it coming. I smiled and listened to what he had to say. He quoted me Isaiah 9:6 (which I thought was funny because I just blogged about this scripture in December here:)
From this scripture he explained that Jesus was God. I agreed because I believe in the Bible and I know Jesus is a God, the Son of Heavenly Father, our Savior. Then he really got after me because he doesn't believe in the Godhead.
"We believe in God the Eternal Father and in His Son, Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost." We believe they are 3 distinct and different people. He didn't and because I did believe they were 3 separate people that I wasn't a Christian - that Mormons were not Christians. WOW! I've never been in that situation before.
I am the worst with come backs and he wasn't leaving until he convinced me I was wrong and he wanted to save my soul. I didn't get frustrated at him....because I love all people - no matter what their beliefs are. I try to treat others the way Jesus would, I was frustrated at myself for not being able to pull up scripture references out of my head as examples. I was not prepared for this as I opened the door. I've never been in that situation to even pre-prepare.
I finally kinda just shut up and let him rant. I smiled (because secretly I know I belong to the true church). Finally he gave up too and we parted ways as I said "Happy New Year". I just felt bad that I wasn't able to explain why I believe in the Godhead as 3 individual people and why Jesus wasn't Heavenly Father.
I didn't even think to explain that Joseph Smith saw the Father and the Son. That would have been disastrous - I can only imagine what he would have said. But, I know it is true.
One of the things I thought was interesting is that he was at my door to persuade me to believe like he does. Then he indicated that our missionaries do the same thing. I had to disagree. It is not the responsibility of missionaries to persuade people to believe. We teach the gospel and ask each individual to pray and receive their own answer or witness in the truthfulness of the Gospel. It isn't us who convert people, it is only through the power of the Holy Ghost to testify that Jesus is the Christ, That Heavenly Father is our Father. We all have personal revelation to know for our self if things are true. He didn't believe in personal revelation or the power of the Holy Ghost.
"We believe the Bible to be the word of God as long as it is translated correctly, we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God."
Part of the scriptures we study and teach from is the King James Bible. I believe in the bible. I always wonder if they believe in the bible how they don't believe that Jesus is Heavenly Father's Son.
I should have asked about when Jesus was baptised and the heavens opened and their was a voice from heaven that said, "This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased". Who was that speaking if not Heavenly Father?
Anyway.... It was quite the experience that I've never had before. I need to be better prepared. I guess it takes the first encounter to prepare - right?? I'm just really bad in confrontations. It's better for me to end up being quiet and let them rant - LOL! It isn't my job to convert people - it is the Holy Ghost's job. I can only be an example and show love. I just wish I was better at quoting scriptures and that is one of my New Years Resolution.
This morning during scripture study we are reading in the Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi chapter 28. It answered my prayers to the situation I found myself in on Saturday. But the most amazing thing is when Brady goes off in song when we get to scriptures he has memorized in seminary. He sang verses: 7-9. I always love it when he knows the scriptures. He will be a great missionary.
I hope I didn't offend any readers of this blog. This is my journal and I had to put this in writing. It was quite the thought provoking experience. But it did strengthen my testimony of the truthfulness of the Godhead.