I often overhear people say things like, “Oh what a cute old couple.” or “I want to be like them when we get old. They look so happy.” They say these things when they see a happy old couple. I don’t know if they think about what it takes to get there. First, you have to be a married couple. You can’t do it if you are just shacking up, or getting married and divorced every few years. You also have to be happy. Not just momentary happiness, but the kind of contentment, and joy, that can still smile, and talk with a young person even when their arthritis is causing them so much pain it would put most people in tears. So a long lasting marriage gives the two time to get to really, and truly know each other. It gives them time to put that knowledge into expressing love to them as they would love themselves. This knowledge doesn’t come easy most times. When you put two sinners together in a marriage, sin is going to happen. It is an opportunity for the one who is sinned against to demonstrate the gospel by giving grace to the other. Remember, grace is unmerited favor. While we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Not only that, He bore our sins, and the punishment for those sins. While your spouse is wrong, and may have hurt your feelings, die to yourself and submit to Christ the way He submitted to the cross. This long lasting marriage is ordained by God. It is a covenant between Him, and the Husband, and Wife. This should not be taken lightly. If you truly want to be a happy old married couple, trust and obey God. Read His word and pray together. Be humbled together and convicted together. When the kids are grown and you are alone with each other, you will be forced to confront the successes and failures you’ve made over the years. Accept and appreciate God’s sanctifying work in your marriage for your own personal growth and use it to love others well.
Have you ever chatted with a mormon on their website? I just did. I had two simple questions. Where did God come from, and did He have a body of flesh and bone? As a Christian, I know that God has no beginning or end. I know that He is the uncaused causation of all things. I know that He has never not been and will always be. I also know that God the Father is spirit and must be worshipped in spirit. He has no body.
The chat started out with two mormons in the chat. One was named Kyle the other was Tyler. As I began asking my questions Kyle became the main responder. Kyle was giving very evasive non-answers to my questions. It was as if the mormon church had no answers for my questions officially. When I explained the eternality of God, Kyle immediately left the chat and a new person named Alec joined. Then Tyler became the main responder to my questions. He paraphrased his partner’s previous noncommittal answers. When I was satisfied that I had received as much of an answer as I was going to get, I ended the conversation.
I wanted them to answer the questions because I didn’t want to misrepresent their beliefs. After talking with them, it is easy to see how people would misrepresent them. Their indefinite official stance on what their church doesn’t know is quite frustrating. The following is a transcript of the conversation;
“Thank you for your interest in chatting with a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
What would you like to talk about?
Did God always exist as God, or did He at some point in time not exist as He does now?
Now chatting with Tyler & Kyle
How are you tonight Bob?
Fine, how are you?
I’m doing well. Thanks.
What brought you onto Mormon.org tonight?
Did God always exist as God, or did He at some point in time not exist as He does now?
you guys still there?
That is a great question! To be honest, we don’t know too much about the origin of God. Some leaders of the Church have taught that God progressed from a man to Godhood.
Sorry about the delay.
We are here.
What was He before He was God?
Like what Kyle said earlier, that’s one topic that we just don’t know about. It’s mostly speculation, no concrete doctrine.
I heard from some people that mormons believe he was once a man named Elohim. Is that true?
That’s what I said above ^^^
It was kind of garbled on my screen for some reason.
What leaders said he was once a man?
Is their some source material you can reference that I could look up and read for myself?
Joseph Smith and Lorenzo Snow were two. I’ll give you some articles.
That would be helpful. I don’t want to misrepresent your beliefs when I encounter others in apologetics or polemics.
That is very understandable!
Here are some links:
https://www.lds.org/ensign/1982/02/i-have-a-question?lang=eng (Second half of the page)
Thank you. If he was at one point in time a man, then where did that man come from?
Here is another one: https://www.lds.org/topics/becoming-like-god?lang=eng. That is an excellent question, that we don’t really comprehend 🙂 The assumption would be that it follows a similar pattern, so he would have a heavenly father as well. There is so much we don’t understand though.
So, that begs the question, where did they come from and so on?
Is Tyler still there?
Exactly, and that is a question I have. Imagining eternity is a concept, we don’t fully understand as mortals. God hasn’t revealed much about it.
Tyler stepped out of the room, but will be back shortly.
Kyle, I think He did reveal it to us. He is the uncaused causation, or original originator. Logically there has to be an original uncreated creator of all things. The Bible is pretty clear that God is immutable and eternal. Eternity is also understood as an infinite instance or ageless age.
Hi Bob! I’m back.
Where did Kyle go?
He had to go. He was just covering for me while I was gone. We just help out at Mormon.org in time shifts and he just finished and had to leave.
Now chatting with Tyler & Alec
So could you answer my question about where did god’s parents come from and where did their parents come from?
There is no official church doctrine on that subject. There is mostly speculation and personal opinion on this subject.
On the last thing that you wrote. I think that’s an interesting thought. Do you have any other concerns.
It seems to me that there would be a being that was the uncaused causation of all things. An eternal God who has always been and never not existed.
I have another question I was pondering.
God the Father in the first vision was said to have flesh and bone.
is that true?
also why can’t I copy and paste something from earlier in the conversation into the input field?
Yes we believe that God has a body of flesh and blood. And I don’t know why you can’t copy and paste.
Have a good night.”
I wouldn’t want to be accused of making straw man arguments, or any other logically fallacious arguments. I hope you found this interesting, and informative.
Experientially, we know that Christian prayer can accomplish miracles. When we consider the omniscience, and sovereignty of God, we know that our prayers don’t change anything that has already been spoken by God, once and for all. We experience life one way. We think something that seems to contradict what we experience. If we can’t square them, it is because we are limited. Some people can justify the sovereignty of God with the experiences of the creature. We don’t look down on those who can’t. I would hope that those who can’t won’t look down on those of us who can.
Consider that God decrees the ends and the means. As I pray for something according to God’s will, as explained in the progressive revelation of His word, I am sanctified. My thoughts and feelings are focused on God and His will. The situation I am praying about changes. I attribute it to God answering my prayers. He willed it to happen by using me to pray at exactly the time He decreed, in the way He decreed, so He could answer in the way that He decreed. The reality of His decree was actual at the moment He spoke everything into being. We are part of that decree. We exist in space-time, when and where He decreed. As our reality unfolds, we are not able to perceive how eternity is experienced. If we can accept that there is an infinite instance that contains our finite, linear experience, and transcends it, then we can also appreciate how the sovereign decreed will of God, and the experience of man are related. Does prayer change things? Yes it does, in our material experience. It changes, here because it was changed before in eternity.
“A Better Way to Pray” by Andrew Wommack
Right off the bat, we have presuppositional problems. Here is a quote from the introduction,
“Are you ready for your prayer life to improve? Would you like to learn how to pray more accurately and receive God’s answers more quickly? If so, you’re reading the right book!”
There is no way our prayers can be any more or less effective, if we are in Christ, the Holy Spirit is interceding for us. The will of the Father will always be done. The efficacy of our prayers does not lie within our attitudes or abilities. In fact it is our inability that should glorify God. He uses weak little creatures like us to accomplish what He has ordained and decreed. When we see our prayers being answered it is because we are aligning our wills with His. When we don’t see the answers we were hoping for, it is because we are sinfully praying from the flesh for what we want over what He wants. We all know that what He wants is good and is for our good, even if it means our deaths. Yes, even our deaths can be part of God’s good purposes. Just because we cannot see the effect of something that happens in the future doesn’t mean that the seemingly bad thing that happened is not God’s will. We just assume so much about our own importance. The focus of the Christian faith isn’t us or what we want! The focus is the glory of God, and what He wills. After all aren’t we supposed to lose our wills and be conformed to the word and will of Christ? We cannot pray His will away, or pray Him into doing something we want Him to do from our carnal fallen wills.
Read what God says in His word.
“Romans 8:26-39 (NASB) 26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; 27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? 33 Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; 34 who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. 35 Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 Just as it is written,
“For Your sake we are being put to death all day long;
WE were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Yet another laughable notion from the introduction,
“But let me ask you this: If the way you are praying isn’t getting good results, why then would you resist change in this area? “
I wonder what the magic formula must be?
His righteousness imputed to us is what makes our entering into prayer acceptable to God. Without that and the Holy Spirit, we would still need a High Priest.
Finally we get to Chapter 1 to read this gem,
“In 1969, I heard a wrong teaching that Satan was “God’s messenger boy.” It said that the devil can only do what the Lord allows, and therefore, God uses him to work good in our lives. That’s totally wrong, but I didn’t know it at the time. I brought this teaching back to my girlfriend and she bought into it completely.”
First off, satan is a creature. He was created by God as Lucifer. He sinned, was cast out of Heaven to Earth, and is now satan. He can’t do anything without God allowing it. If you remember from reading Job, he had to ask permission from God to torment Job. All creatures can only do what God allows. If God wants to stop you from doing something, He can simply stop you. God is sovereign.
Then he goes on to show allegedly the terrible outcome of believing in the sovereignty of God, and the fact that satan is a created subject of our Lord. I don’t know if his story is true or not. Even if it is, and even if they died because of their prayers, all it proves is that it was their time to die. Nobody dies without God ordaining it. Not even a sparrow dies without God ordaining it. Of course there are martyrs all throughout history who have died horrible deaths. These deaths have been exclamations of their lives of faith.
I doubt his stories about the boy from school, “coming down with leukemia the next day” are true. We don’t pray to satan, and satan doesn’t answer our prayers. Satan has no ability to read our minds and hear prayers from us. Satan doesn’t control when we die. God does. Is satan kills someone it is because God has ordained that fashion of death for them. If the stories about two young people are true, then God had ordained for them to die in just the way that they died.
So his son was raised from the dead, because his relationship with God, and how he prayed. When my father died and stayed dead, when my friend’s 2 year old died and stayed dead, it was our fault because we don’t pray right, or have the same communion with God? What a load of garbage. Andrew Wommack needs to stop teaching and repent.
Here’s a good one, “The heart attitude behind your prayer interests God much more than the actual words you say. Just because you spend an hour, or more, in what you call“prayer” doesn’t mean you’re accomplishing anything. If your attitude is wrong, you’re praying wrong!”
Guess what… we are all praying wrong. None of us can pray a prayer on our own that is acceptable to God. The Holy Spirit makes our prayers acceptable to God along with the justifying work of Jesus.
Apparently Wommack teaches universal or general atonement. Here it is from his own book,
“As far as God’s concerned, the sins of the entire world have already been forgiven. The Lamb’s perfect sacrifice dealt decisively with the past, present, and future sins of every believer and nonbeliever alike. This doesn’t mean that all are just “automatically” saved (or healed). All individuals must receive for themselves by faith what Jesus Christ has already provided in order to actually benefit from it. A gift given isn’t fully yours until it’s received!”
Did you catch that? Apparently Jesus justified everyone’s sins with the Father. Apparently He atoned for everyone. So I guess Jesus’ work was not perfect or sufficient. I guess it was wasted on those who would not repent. Here is the problem with claiming He made salvation available for everyone, it means that all sin has already been paid for, so then even if a person doesn’t repent and believe in Christ, their sin is already atoned for. That means they have no guilt before God. There is no need for anyone to accept salvation or the gift as he puts it. It is a ridiculous statement. This is what happens when you let bad theology, emotions, and tradition dictate your faith.
It is apparent that Wommack has used an Arminian highlighter (black sharpie) to highlight/redact all of the verses about predestination and election. The lady he mentions on page 7 who was unsure if she was saved or not could have been helped by good theology, not Wommack’s hodge podge, grab bag, word of faith nonsense. If the lady had not been granted saving faith and repentance, then no matter how much she intellectually affirms the gospel, she will not be saved. Being saved requires God to grant you true repentance, and faith along with the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit. He only does this for His elect, whom He has predestined from before the creation of the world.
And yet more nonsense, “What if someone in a wheelchair came forward for healing during a service? If I prayed and didn’t see him rise out of the wheelchair immediately, I could ask the audience, “How many of you will stand in faith together with me? Let’s fast and pray in agreement, not letting go of God until He heals this person.” I bet I could persuade 90 percent of the people to go along with that! Yet God’s Word clearly proclaims, “As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him” (Col. 2:6). In the same way you appropriate and walk in forgiveness of sin, you receive healing, deliverance, prosperity, and everything else! If begging God to save the lady in the first scenario is inappropriate, then doing so for healing or anything else in the Christian life is absolutely wrong too! Christ already made full provision for the abundant life through His atonement. It’s now not up to Him to do, but you to receive what He’s done!”
How about the Christians of the early Church or the middle east right now? The martyrs of the Church live an abundant life in Christ, even in their poverty and deaths. Christ talked more about suffering for the faith than living in comfort and health. Matter of fact, those are signs you are doing it wrong.
And more idiocy, “Sometimes Christians approach God, praying, “I know You can heal me, but You haven’t done it yet. Therefore, I want to learn how to make You heal me.” This is rank unbelief! They don’t believe that He’s already done it and they think they can make Him do it.Wrong! Such unbelief explains why more people aren’t experiencing healing.”
So how about Christians who suffer long lingering deaths? You can pray for life and health if you want, but you should be praying for God’s will to be done, and for Him to be glorified, after all isn’t that what Christ did before the crucifixion? Luke 22:42, “saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.””
We haven’t even made it to the 2nd chapter of this disservice to Christ, and twisting of His word to bilk people out of money and true peace.
“In our Bible schools and teaching seminars, we confidently instruct people not to “pray” for the sick, but to heal them. Jesus commanded us in Matthew 10:8 to “heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, [and] cast out devils.”There’s a huge difference between healing the sick and just praying for them!”
Matthew 10:8 is not an instruction to the Church. It is instruction to the Apostles during the foundation of the Church. The Apostles who were specifically personally appointed to their office by the incarnate Christ during His earthly ministry were to fulfill Matthew 10:8. Bad hermeneutics lead to Wommack’s horrible interpretation. The wages of sin is death. We are all under the curse of original sin. We all will die. There is not a single person alive today who will not die unless the Lord returns first.
And more false teachings,
“Jesus Christ completed everything necessary to save and heal every person. You believed and received salvation. Healing comes the exact same way! It shouldn’t be any harder to receive your healing since He provided it at the same time as forgiveness for your sin. Neither does it take any more faith to raise someone from the dead than to see them born again!”
If this is the case, then Wommack and his cronies should all never die, and not wear glasses, get sick, or ever go to the doctor. They need to go to each nursing home and raise all of the old people from the dead when they die. This is just ludicrous and idiotic. Anyone who believes this tripe is being deceived. They join the health and wealth false gospel with their soteriology. Do you see the problems here?
You had to know this would show up sometime,
“As a citizen of the kingdom of darkness, the enemy legitimately dominated your life. At the time of your salvation, you hadn’t been fasting, praying, studying the Word, attending church, paying tithes, or living a holy life.”
Never mind that we are not Jews, we are not under the ceremonial law, and we have the instruction to prayerfully consider and give with a cheerful heart. There is no set tithe for Christians.
Here Wommack perverts the gospel,
“The good “news” of the gospel is that God has already forgiven you. Why would you choose to go to hell with your sins forgiven?”
with this I am done. I can’t take anymore false teachings. I’m not even out of the 1st chapter of this mess. The good news of the gospel my friends is that you and I are filthy, wretched sinners, who like the people God killed during the flood, deserve death and hell for all eternity, but God being rich in mercy, and grace, provided a way for us to be saved in the work of Jesus on the cross. While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Christ took on our guilt. He took the punishment we deserve as sinners, and when He finished suffering the punishment for every sinner who would repent from sin and believe in His works on the cross, Jesus died, was buried, and resurrected on the third day. He now sits at the right hand of the Father making intercession for us. The Holy Spirit regenerates the elect and according to the Father’s will the elect will repent and believe in the work of Christ. They are saved and cannot be lost. The Holy Spirit indwells them and is their seal for redemption. Here is another link to why you should stay away.
Read these instead of Wommack’s book, http://www.ligonier.org/blog/if-god-sovereign-why-pray/
So I was all relaxed, eating some french toast with real maple syrup, and drinking a cup of joe, when something solid hit my lips from inside my coffee cup as I was sipping another drink. I thought for a moment, “Peradventure, this must be a piece of french toast, what was adrift in my sea of hot lifer’s blood? Then again, perhaps not? I must investigate this incongruity!” Aghast was I upon discovery of the truth! Verily, I declare it was the corpse of a recently deceased Musca domestica! (common house fly) There it was in all its horrible glory, taunting me posthumously from the lip of my John Wayne commemorative coffee cup! What did I do you might query? I did what any other man of my stature, and maturity would do. I leapt up with the grace and athleticism a man of my girth, and dexterity possesses, and ran flapping my arms to the bathroom sink, where I expediently flushed said fly coffee from my mouth, rinsed with copious amounts of Listerine™, and prayed to God that the villan had not communicated to me any sundry diseases, curses, or maladies.
As some of you might recall, I posted a short article about a debate that James White had with Leighton Flowers. It was supposed to be about Romans 9. When Leighton pretty much just ignored the topic of debate, and used it as an excuse to launch into what was basically a screed against Calvinism. After watching that debate, I thought, “What a hash, and waste of time.” I was hoping for a well thought out position that could interact, and challenge some of the notions that I hold to. Not to overthrow those notions, but rather to sharpen, and hone them. (Good arguments have a way of doing that.)
Well, I went into this debate with low expectations because, “I heard things.” Let me just say that my expectations were a bit high. It was very disappointing to me. I have some friends who are Calvary Chapel peeps, and they usually can separate their feelings towards Reformed soteriology, and their feelings for me as a person. We can have a chat, and discuss theology without it getting to the, “Shots fired!” battleground. This debate was a, “bait and switch.” James White went to Norwalk, California prepared to debate Romans 9. When the debate started it turned into an anti-Calvinist, sneak attack. Where Steve Tassi abandoned the rules and format of formal debate. He used the debate as a forum to express anti-Calvinist, and anti-James White sentiments, that seemed to be fueled by his personal traditions, and a false caricature of Calvinism. (Straw Man)
I felt bad for everyone there, especially people who paid to travel there. I felt bad for them, not just because of financial expenditures, but mainly because they were not able to get the benefit of a spirited, well thought out debate. The debate Dr. White had with Dr. Michael Brown was much more educational and edifying for all involved. It followed the rules of debate, and both sides presented well thought out arguments from their own positions, while remaining friendly and respectful.
I enjoy watching debates that are well done. I get a lot out of them. I am vexed, because in many ways this was a waste of time, resources, and efforts. It was also a waste of opportunity. This could have been a great way for the men to genuinely listen to each other, to hear and understand what was being expressed. They could have come away from this as better friends, and more understanding brothers in Christ. I don’t blame James White for this. I understand why he got impatient. I could even understand why some people might have misunderstood his attempts to coax or goad Dr. Tassi into following the rules as snarky or mean. I don’t think Dr. White was being snarky or mean. I just said I could understand why some people would think that, so don’t be putting words in my mouth, so to speak. I thought James did as good a job as could be expected, under the circumstances. I don’t think I could have been so gracious to Dr. Tassi. I was fighting my frustration just watching the debate.
Let’s look forward to more good debates, and learn from the bad ones as well. That way they aren’t a total loss. I learned that when you get thrown a curve ball you need to think on your feet, and be well prepared ahead of time. If you’re a Christian who is well studied in the word of God, you can respond to most arguments thrown at you, even if they are off topic. Also I learned that we must be patient with people who don’t see, or hear what we are really saying. We have to maintain our composure and soldier through, just like Dr. White did. We can do those things, and still call people on their errors, without being unloving. Squishy doesn’t equate to loving, or non-loving. Standing firm for, and on the word of God, is loving.
Apparently, the video won’t play on other sites, because the owner(Tassi’s ministry outreach) has disallowed it. So here is a link to the video on Youtube so you can watch it.