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Restformationist

1st/2nd century church

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I've heard there are 1st and 2nd century writings by Church leaders which suggest doctrines exclusive nowadays to the LDS Church are supported. Could someone point me in the right direction? (Links?) I think this could be an interesting discussion, once I read the quotes for myself.

God Bless,

Brent

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First Century writings would be the some Dead Sea Scrolls, Josephus, Philo, and the New Testament. Second Century writings fan out, but would include Justin Martyr, and some of the Early Christian fathers. I suspect that what you are looking for though, is Barry Bickmore's Restoring the Ancient Church, which was published by FAIR. Bickmore focus on the early Christian writings in comparison to LDS teachings, and provides ample documentation of his sources.

Kevin Christensen

Pittsburgh, PA

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I've heard there are 1st and 2nd century writings by Church leaders which suggest doctrines exclusive nowadays to the LDS Church are supported.

Wasn't the (early Christian) Church thought to be in apostasy at that time by the LDS Church?

If so, why would writings from that time be supportive? Why would they not be apostate?

My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

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I've heard there are 1st and 2nd century writings by Church leaders which suggest doctrines exclusive nowadays to the LDS Church are supported.

Wasn't the (early Christian) Church thought to be in apostasy at that time by the LDS Church?

If so, why would writings from that time be supportive? Why would they not be apostate?

My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

[edited by moderator]

While we believe the church fell into apostacy, we've always believed that there is truth in all Christian churches, and that we, the LDS church, have all the correct and necessary truths for salvation. I'm sure that just as Jesus' holy church changed in time in innumerably ways, it (whatever church rose from the ashes) had more truths at the beginning then the smorgasbord of Christian sects has now.

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This is an interesting question but I think that one could selectively find writings of ECFs that are consistent with Islam, Buddhism, J's Witnesses and so forth.

In the end, the deeper question is whether you believe God was able or willing to preserve His Church on earth. If, as the LDS claim, the answer is 'no', then you should be prepared to explain your confidence that God has preserved LDS from apostasy. Frankly, the back and forth on issues of race and polygamy and the other changes across the last century in the LDS signify a faith that God is guiding His church, His restored church, and protecting it from error. Funny that He would do that now but not 2,000 years ago.

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My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

To my knowledge the church has not done this. Even with baptisms for the dead. There is another church that does it. I dont remember what church but we were taught that in our gospel principles class. Temple ordinances? Who else is doing them? We acknowledge other churchs are doing missionary work. I mean come on could you avoid the JW's if you wanted to? So to my knowledge the LDS church has not taken things and claim them as their own cause it wasnt ours to begin with. These early practices were of Christs Church which is why we have them. What are these things what we claim (besides temple ordinance's) do we claim we are the only ones doing them?

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This is an interesting question but I think that one could selectively find writings of ECFs that are consistent with Islam, Buddhism, J's Witnesses and so forth.

In the end, the deeper question is whether you believe God was able or willing to preserve His Church on earth. If, as the LDS claim, the answer is 'no', then you should be prepared to explain your confidence that God has preserved LDS from apostasy. Frankly, the back and forth on issues of race and polygamy and the other changes across the last century in the LDS signify a faith that God is guiding His church, His restored church, and protecting it from error. Funny that He would do that now but not 2,000 years ago.

Maybe we are more righteous and open to it then we were 2000 years ago? God didn't want to take it from the earth, it was taken because his holy annointed were murdered and the holy priesthood was not passed on to other apostles. At that time, it was obvious with the hatred that it couldn't be brought back until a nation was truly free. This country was freed in the late 1700's, and it was brought back nearly 50 years after that. Seems like the perfect time for it to be brought back and we live in a day and age where we are free to use our agency in the selection of religion.

Thus a perfect breeding ground for a free, perfect gospel to arise from the ashes.

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I think the Church's position on the Apostasy is that priesthood authority and the keys needed to use the priesthood were withdrawn. The ancient church was operating under the keys of presidency and not under the patriarchial order. At some point the only remaining Apostle would have been John. The Church does not specifically explain what happen to John, but I speculate that at some point John was "quickened", "translated" or somehow "changed" in such a way that he longer could function as a mortal man holding the keys of presidency. Evidence of this is that while it is acknowledged by Christianity that John will tarry until the second coming, nobody claims the he is directing anyone's church today.

When the priesthood keys were gone, new ordinances (even performed by priesthood holders) would no longer be considered valid. This did not mean that truth suddenly vanished. True teachings would have been perverted over time. We can see from Paul's admonitions to the church that local leaders tended to fall back into false teachings without direction. Certainly by the time of Constantine, the civil government was using perverted teachings as a way of unifying the general populace.

Hugh Nibley wrote a book years ago (can't recall the title) that listed a number of evidences to this. I still remember that one of them was the lack of church property at that time. His belief was that this demonstrated the understanding that the Church was in a "temporary" state, and that the members understood this.

It is also historical fact the there was not concensus at the time the 4th century creed. The fact that a creed was necessary speaks to the fact that there was controversy. From an LDS perspective, none of factions at the time of the 4th century creed were correct. I like Jeffrey Holland's quote: "of course we are Christians, just not 4th century Chrstians."

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Name calling? I was calling a spade a spade. Ave seems to be very angry at the church. Do you not sense that yourself? :P

As for her being true' date=' why not prove it instead of giving blank answers that don't verify it and hide it by attacking me. She didn't give us any proof, so why should I provide it? My speculation was countering her speculation, and your speculation is backing up her speculation while criticizing my speculation. Do you see how very ironic this is? <_<

Meta, are you God or something?:-)

John 10: 34

34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

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My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

I've noticed the same tendency, but more with later writers. C.S. Lewis would be the prime example, I think. I actually have a book called "The Restored Gospel According to C.S. Lewis" by Nathan Jensen, and the author stretches quite a bit, in my opinion. Over 90% of the book quotes Lewis' writings about things which all Christendom holds in common (such as the importance of faith, hope, and love, etc.), then quotes LDS authorities to show that C.S. Lewis was indeed a "proto-Mormon", because he talked about faith and the LDS church talks about faith. If I remember right, there were only about a half-dozen actual C.S. Lewis quotes that were applied to unique LDS doctrine.

I see the same thing in the LDS church's use of the ECF. While there are some common elements LDS scholars can point to, there is not one church father whose entire body of work points more toward LDS thought than to that of mainstream Christianity. LDS scholarship on this point leans more towards cutting and pasting without consideration of context. Isolated quotes do not make a convincing case, at least to me.

And stating one's own observations does not necessarily point to bitterness toward the church. I don't have any bitterness towards the LDS church, but that doesn't mean that I withhold my observations, thoughts and feelings. I think ave maria has hit upon a valid point, which I've also noticed in other areas of LDS thought. When the ECF agrees with current LDS doctrine or belief, then that instance is an example of a shard of truth poking through the Apostasy, to be sifted out of the rest of the work like panning for gold. I've noticed the same approach to the Bible among some LDS friends. If the verse agrees with the LDS view, then that's Scripture, but if it doesn't, that was a scribal change or tampering with the original.

In short, the LDS put current church belief and doctrine over the testimony of early Christians in history, instead of learning and understanding the whole of what they want to teach us. In my opinion, the testimony of those ancient sources should be teaching us and shaping us, not vice versa. Catholics and Orthodox have been doing this for centuries, and Protestants are jumping in enthusiastically now as well.

Anyway, I'll be quiet now. Take care, everyone :P

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Name calling? I was calling a spade a spade. Ave seems to be very angry at the church. Do you not sense that yourself?

Actually, I've seen ave maria defending the LDS church on several occasions. She strikes me as fair, but still convicted that the LDS church is not what it claims to be. You seem to be focusing on the person, instead of what she is saying.

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Name calling? I was calling a spade a spade. Ave seems to be very angry at the church. Do you not sense that yourself?

Actually, I've seen ave maria defending the LDS church on several occasions. She strikes me as fair, but still convicted that the LDS church is not what it claims to be. You seem to be focusing on the person, instead of what she is saying.

Give me one quote. Thanks.

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I've compiled some of my Favorite 1st Century teachings here:

http://www.fairboards.org/index.php?showtopic=10051

Most Christians expect LDS to show exactly where in the 1st Century the LDS church in its entirety existed. However, I think this is an unrealistic approach to the sistuation. Beings we beleive in continued revelation, and not even the current LDS church existed as such in 1830. (ie three Kigdoms of Glory came later, etc.)

Its also a double bind because we look for our teachings and when they are found we get... "Yep, Gotcha! Theres where Joseph Smith Plagerized the Idea from." Add another book to his Library list.

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I think the Church's position on the Apostasy is that priesthood authority and the keys needed to use the priesthood were withdrawn

Can somebody tell me what is the central reason, in the LDS view, for the withdrawl of the priestly authority?

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Name calling? I was calling a spade a spade. Ave seems to be very angry at the church. Do you not sense that yourself?

Actually, I've seen ave maria defending the LDS church on several occasions. She strikes me as fair, but still convicted that the LDS church is not what it claims to be. You seem to be focusing on the person, instead of what she is saying.

Give me one quote. Thanks.

Meta--

I'm hopeful you're not planning to change the focus of this thread to me instead of the topic at hand, but since you asked, you can start here:

http://www.fairboards.org/index.php?showtopic=8628&st=0

As I don't intend to go back and forth with you about it, I hope that now you've had "one quote," you'll drop it and move on.

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I've heard there are 1st and 2nd century writings by Church leaders which suggest doctrines exclusive nowadays to the LDS Church are supported.

Wasn't the (early Christian) Church thought to be in apostasy at that time by the LDS Church?

If so, why would writings from that time be supportive? Why would they not be apostate?

My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

Ave Maria,

I suspect that you do not think that LDS use the term

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Name calling? I was calling a spade a spade. Ave seems to be very angry at the church. Do you not sense that yourself?

Actually, I've seen ave maria defending the LDS church on several occasions. She strikes me as fair, but still convicted that the LDS church is not what it claims to be. You seem to be focusing on the person, instead of what she is saying.

Give me one quote. Thanks.

Meta--

I'm hopeful you're not planning to change the focus of this thread to me instead of the topic at hand, but since you asked, you can start here:

http://www.fairboards.org/index.php?showto...28&st=0�

As I don't intend to go back and forth with you about it, I hope that now you've had "one quote," you'll drop it and move on.

You cite good business investiments as not being bitter towards the church? :P

And I never intended on changing the topic to this. It was part of the first post I created and rhinomelon decided to bring it up over the other more relevant part for the thread.

As I see you not contending with the idea, I will assume my assumption was correct and be done with this entire discussion.

See how well that works? Now neither of us need to speak of it again here.

I suspect that you do not think that LDS use the term “apostasy” in the same way Catholics use the term “apostasy.” LDS generally mean that there was an apostasy of authority not that belief in Christ ceased.

Excellant!

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Thanks Tom. As you no doubt know, there are good counterarguments to your emphasis on creation ex nihilo as the beginning of the end:

exnihilo

It's interesting that you would cite Justin Martyr to support your position. What would LDS make of this:

Justin Martyr:

"We call this food Eucharist, and no one else is permitted to partake of it, except one who believes our teaching to be true and who has been washed in the washing which is for the remission of sins and for regeneration [i.e., has received baptism] and is thereby living as Christ enjoined. For not as common bread nor common drink do we receive these; but since Jesus Christ our Savior was made incarnate by the word of God and had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so too, as we have been taught, the food which has been made into the Eucharist by the Eucharistic prayer set down by him, and by the change of which our blood and flesh is nurtured, is both the flesh and the blood of that incarnated Jesus" (First Apology 66 [A.D. 151]).

As I said in my initial post, the pick 'n choose game can be played by all :P

Maybe this question seems overly simple, but I'll pose it again: If God failed to protect the Church from error the first time around, what is the source of confidence you have that apostasy won't/hasn't happen(ed) again?

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I've heard there are 1st and 2nd century writings by Church leaders which suggest doctrines exclusive nowadays to the LDS Church are supported.

Wasn't the (early Christian) Church thought to be in apostasy at that time by the LDS Church?

If so, why would writings from that time be supportive? Why would they not be apostate?

My own observation is that various Latter-day Saints are quick to grab certain writings and practices from the early Church and claim them as their own, and claim that they're the only ones currently doing them, when this is actually not the case.

Ave Maria,

I suspect that you do not think that LDS use the term “apostasy” in the same way Catholics use the term “apostasy.”

I'm on record to that effect. The Catholic Church never has denied the existence of "apostasy" in the history of the Christian Church; the LDS Church instead interprets this as "complete and total apostasy."

I'm not certain it's relevant what the Catholic interpretation of apostasy is. My interest is that Latter-day Saints on the one hand are quick these days to say that the (complete and total) apostasy (should be capital 'A' Apostasy, I suppose, as in Great Apostasy) took place right after the deaths of the original apostles. Yet on the other hand, it's become fashionable in LDS circles to quote from the Early Christian Fathers to support LDS doctrines and practices.

As noted above, my primary difficulty with this is that a number of such assert that the writings of the ECF support doctrines and practices that are currently exclusive to the LDS Church, when this is not the case. I've explored this topic previously, and given examples.

I think rhinomelon is spot on in his analysis of the same.

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Maybe this question seems overly simple, but I'll pose it again: If God failed to protect the Church from error the first time around, what is the source of confidence you have that apostasy won't/hasn't happen(ed) again?

Because we have been told that the gospel will not fall away in these days.

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Meta,

That's the same response that any Christian from the previous 2,000 years would have given. If they were wrong, then I don't see how you can be confident your faith isn't misplaced too.

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Wasn't the (early Christian) Church thought to be in apostasy at that time by the LDS Church?

Yes. No set date though. From the time John disappeared from the scene to perhaps a few decades later.

If so, why would writings from that time be supportive? Why would they not be apostate?

If the Apostasy actually happened, it is not unreasonable to suppose that the closer you get to NT times, the more LDS doctrine you find. It is also not unreasonable to suppose that some doctinres would last for centuries after the Apostasy. Both cases happen to be true.

What is unreasonable is the idea that as soon as the Apostasy occured, all doctrines were changed immediately.

Some of the more important doctines extant in early Christianity are....

Plurality of Gods

Subordinationism (the Son, while a God, is subordinate to the Father)

Theosis (men to become Gods)

Three Degrees of glory (as well as a fourth place of no glory at all)

Preaching the gospel to the dead and baptism on their behalf.

etc. etc.

No hint of trinity, sola fide, eternal security, or traducianism (original sin).

Only the LDS Church is close to the doctrines of the first Christians, just as you would expect if the LDS Church is the only true Christian Church (which it is based soley on scriptural and historical evidence).

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As I see you not contending with the idea, I will assume my assumption was correct and be done with this entire discussion.

See how well that works?

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