Monday, February 20, 2012

Sister Wives?NO

In my last blog (a few weeks ago) I spoke of how I found out the Mormon Church was not a Christian Church and filled with false doctrine.  The day I discovered the Mormon Church was false was the day before Easter Sunday(April 14, 1979).  Let me back track a little bit though to the end of March 1979.  Mike, my Mormon fiance was back in Utah during spring break from university and we spoke on the phone everyday.  We were busy talking about our wedding and all those details.  During one conversation I asked Mike a question, "If I died before him would he remarry and be sealed in the Mormon Temple?"  He said that he would if the woman had never been sealed before.  Well, this was not the answer I wanted to hear.  What I wanted Mike to say is, "Of course not!  You are the only one! I never want to be sealed to anyone else--ever!"  So we started our first disagreement on polygamy.  Oh, Mike assured me he did not like the doctrine and would not want to participate in this.  I asked him what he would do if the prophet came to him and told him to take another wife--would he?  Mike said that I would have to grant permission, so if I said no then he would not do this, but I would be damned to hell if I didn't agree to it.  Not much of a choice is it?  Mike then also told me that men are the only ones allowed to take another wife.  Women are not allowed to take another husband.  What I also didn't quite understand is that Mormons believe in the doctrine of polygamy still today.  How it works is I would be married to my Mormon guy and sealed in the Mormon temple for time and all eternity.  Then at some point in time my Mormon guy would be sealed to other women for eternity in the next life.  It is the only way for a Mormon man to go to the highest level in heaven (Celestial) and the only way for a Mormon woman to go to the highest level of heaven too.  Hence celestial marriage=plural marriage=polygamy (it's all the same thing).   So Mormon women are sealed (glued) to a polygamous guy in heaven.  Doesn't sound like heaven to me.  When Mike and I ended our conversation I felt hurt and unhappy.  So then a few weeks pass by and he comes home from spring break and gives me my Mormon temple clothes.  If you haven't read that story you can read about it in my last blog. 
So here I am on Easter Sunday (April 15, 1979).  I have to go to my Mormon ward because I was a Sunday school teacher for 3 year olds.  When I walked into the Mormon ward (a ward is a church congregation) I said hi to all my friends and inside felt like crying.  I sat through the service and noticed there was not a CROSS anywhere.  I'm thinking it's Easter and there is no cross.  Why?  All they talked about during the Easter service was the exaultation of man and how they were going to be gods.  Nothing was said about how Jesus died on the cross for our sins.  Nothing was said about salvation.  I wanted to cry.  I come out of that service and see my maid of honor.  She was a sweet girl and I always enjoyed talking to her.  I asked my maid of honor, "What would you do if the prophet came to you and your husband and told him to take another wife?"  She said that she would just welcome her as a sister wife in the Lord."  I could hardly believe my ears and I said to her, "Oh, come on!  How could you say that?"   Then I walked away from her and again was close to tears.  I walked into my Sunday school class with those adorable 3 year olds.  One kid always wore this cute little sports jacket.  I couldn't teach the lesson.  All I did was show them pictures of Jesus and asked them who they thought He is.  A few days later I called the bishop and told him to have someone come and pick up my Sunday school stuff because I have lost  my testimony.  I told him I no longer believe the Mormon Church is true.  He was stunned and could hardly believe it.  Then the harrassment starts.  I was harrassed by constant phone calls (and in 1979 answering machines were not the norm).  I was harrassed by Mormons coming to my home.  They sent me letters. They seemed to be every where.  I finally had to tell them to leave me alone or I would have my attorney tell them to leave me alone.  Over time they quit bothering me, but it was a very stressful time. 
A couple of months later I met my born-again Christian husband.  I met him at a going away party for mutual friends.  What I didn't know is that my mother had been praying for me to meet a great born-again Christian guy soon. That was really great.  I married him in a Christian ceremony 32 years ago. 

God never intended for people to engage in polygamy.  He has said numerous times in the Bible that marriage is between one man and one woman.  Here are some Scriptures where the Bible says it is so.

"For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." Genesis 2:24

"Haven't you read," he replied, "that at the beginning the Creator 'made them male and female,' and said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh?'  So they are no longer two, but one.  Therefore what God has joined together, let man no separate."  Matthew 19:4-6

"For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh."  Ephesians 5:31

"Jesus replied, "Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven." Mark 12:24-25  (We are not still married in heaven)

"Watch out for false prophets.  They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.  By their fruit you will recognize them.  Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?  Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. "  Matthew 7:15-20

So both the Old and New Testaments state God's will for marriage.  Polygamy is not part of that picture.  Marriage is God's creation.  People will try to change it and in so doing will go against God.  Like the Bible says "watch out for false prophets". 

Let's pray:  Dear Lord Jesus, I pray for those lost in Mormonism and those lost in other false religions.  I pray that their hearts will be softened and that they will hear the Good News of Jesus and His saving grace for them.  I pray that many will be saved.  I say these things in Jesus' name. Amen.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

God or "gods"?

It was 1979 and I was a young 23 year old woman planning my Mormon wedding.  I had my dress, flowers, photographer, venue (Mormon temple), and reception planned.  The only thing left was the invitations.  We wanted invitations that had our picture on the front.  For some reason we could never get a good picture of the two of us so that kept us from ordering our invitations.  It was April of 1979, and my fiance, Mike, had come over to give me a birthday present from his parents.  That present was my Mormon temple robes.  When I opened up the box I saw white chiffon type material and then this big green apron.  The big green apron is what made me shudder.  It was dull green satin with green leaves stitched on it that were supposed to represent fig leaves.  It looked crazy--the way the leaves were so wavy. It reminded me of a Van Gogh painting.  Not to offend Van Gogh, but he did suffer from mental illness.  Mike and I then left for my Mormon ward to go to the church service.  I did not tell Mike what I thought of those temple clothes at that time.  My parents then came home and my mom sees a box on the coffee table and opens it.  Immediately the Holy Spirit convicts her heart and she knows the Mormon Church is not a born-again Christian Church.  Funny how the Lord opens your eyes to the truth.  Anyway, later that evening I was helping my mom dry the dishes and she had a funny look on her face.  Upon pressing her as to why--she didn't want to say.  When I asked her on the tenth time she said, "I opened up that box and saw those Mormon robes and I thought this is not a Christian church.  This is a cult.  Your father and I can't come into the Mormon temple to see you get married and that is not Christian.  Christ didn't just come for the perfect people, He came for everyone."  With that the blanket of darkness that had covered me was lifted and I said, "You're right!"  My heart sank because I was engaged to be married.  Now what do I do?  To make a long story short and I have probably told this so many times, but after praying about whether I should marry Mike or not I knew I had to speak to him.  So I called him up and said "I have lost my testimony".  He took the train out to my house.  We spoke at length and he didn't want to break up (at first).  I told him that he was NOT going to be God.  There is only ONE GOD and neither he nor myself would EVER be GOD.  What followed was shocking.  Mike sat there with his arm around me and said very coldly, "Karen, why don't you want to be a god?"  I thought, what?  Who are you?  Mike, do I know you?  During the eight months that I dated Mike I had no idea he really thought he was going to be a god.  I said to Mike, "No, I do not want to be a god.  God has a lot of responsibility and we can't be Him. He is the Great I AM.  There is only ONE GOD and we are not it!"  Mike showed me a Bible verse (1 Corinthians 8:4-6) "So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that an idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but one.  For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords"), yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from who all things come and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live."  Mike tried to convince me that this Bible verse meant that there is more than one God.  That is not what it says.  This Bible verse is talking about that there is only ONE God, but that people create idols (like money, movie stars, etc. anything that we put first instead of God).  So people in a sinful world who love money would make that their "god".  This Bible verse clearly says that there is only one God and we are only to worship the God found in the Bible.  Once the Lord showed me the truth the false Mormon doctorine unraveled very quickly.  No one will be a god and it is just arrogant and wrong to think otherwise. Here are some Bible verses that show there is only one God and how He saved us.

"Do not tremble, do not be afraid.  Did I not proclaim this and foretell it long ago?  You are my witnesses.  Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I know not one." Isaiah 44:8

"Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into world.  1John 4:1

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--not by works, so that no one can boast." Ephesians 2:8-9

"He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.  He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit." Titus 3:5

"That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved." Romans 10:9-10

"You are my witnesses," declares the LORD, "and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am he.  Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me." Isaiah 43:10

After the Lord showed me that Mormonism is wrong I still had to go to the Mormon church one last time, but that story will be saved for my next blog devotional.

Let's pray:  Dear Lord Jesus, I pray that You will show people reading this and people in the world the truth.  The truth found in Your Word (Bible) sets us free and I pray that those lost in the darkness of Mormonism and other false religions will be set free from that darkness.  I pray that people will not be deceived into thinking Mormonism is from God, but that Mormonism will be exposed for the false religion that it is.  I pray for protection and I ask that Your favor and wisdom will be upon me and all those who seek You Lord Jesus. I say these things in Jesus' name. Amen.