Jump to content

Notes on Gregor McHardy’s, "8 Myths of the Apostasy"


Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, CV75 said:

Do apostaholics ever fall off the wagon?

I see what you did there! :D  Good one! ;) 

Link to comment
23 hours ago, Gkmchardy said:

David

No apologies needed. I did not take your criticism as harsh. Historians should be able to be blunt and forthright, as long as no ad hominem takes place. 

Tbe book was indeed written quickly, but I think the main problem was my working in a vacuum as well as being beans new to the publishing process. The publisher was unable to provide anyone who was qualified to critique the draft and wanted me to find someone myself...which I was obviously unable to do 

Good point about Aaronic Priesthood. That's why I suggested it as conjecture. But in my defense, if a literal descendant of Aaron could claim it without even ordination, there is obviously some facet of priesthood authority's durability that we have not pinned down. Also note that I do not claim that any remaining priesthood authority has the power to perform a celestial baptism, but only a terrestrial one.

Gregor 

 

 

 

 

Gregor: Good to see you here. I ordered and then read through your book twice over the last few days. I enjoyed it and learned much from it. I have attended an LDS ward here in Chihuahua for five years and am very interested in the whole apostasy concept. I have many pages marked in your book and a number of questions. While it has nothing to do with the Apostasy, I enjoyed your comments about Boethius and his curriculum and as a retired public school district superintendent, I immediately went online and bought the Audible version of his book. I look forward to listening to it.
 

I enjoyed your comments about how the Saints sought to become a peculiar people. I am Mennonite and we have taken that title upon ourselves with great pride (for a humble people). You stated "The membership of the church of Christ is bigger, wider, longer, and deeper that we can imagine." (100). I offer a hearty Mennonite Amen to that. The one thing I missed in your book was the all important (from my perspective) LDS definition of apostate and apostasy. It must be a very different definition than what I was taught. That is ok, but it does lead me to some confusion. I would love to hear more about THEE TRUTHS that you believe Christ taught to his disciples that are not recorded in the gospels.

At this time, the last thing I would say is that I admired your position that "It is time for the Latter-day Saints to take their place among the world-not apart from it; and certainly not above it." I am a staunch supporter of the true Christianity of many of the Saints who I know. I do however regret how "less than" that my wife and I are made to feel via their confidence in their "onlyness." My sense from reading your book is that you perhaps believe the Saints are special, but not necessarily the "only."

At any rate, thanks for writing your book. Write another one and focus please on the LDS definition, concept, and scope of the apostasy and what it means for someone to be apostate.  Someone over on my thread on your book posted that the Saints believe that members of other churches can be both apostate and Christian at the same time. That is a new concept to me - and that is why I am on this forum to read new things. I am very interested in the LDS concept of the apostasy and its impact on and implications for contemporary non-LDS Christians and their churches. As a Anabaptist I am pleased that we were a restorationist church 300 years prior to the Saints! It is good to know that we are not the "only" peculiar people! Take care.

Edited by Navidad
Link to comment

David

No apologies needed. I did not take your criticism as harsh. Historians should be able to be blunt and forthright, as long as no ad hominem takes place. 

Tbe book was indeed written quickly, but I think the main problem was my working in a vacuum as well as being beans new to the publishing process. The publisher was unable to provide anyone who was qualified to critique the draft and wanted me to find someone myself...which I was obviously unable to do 

Good point about Aaronic Priesthood. That's why I suggested it as conjecture. But in my defense, if a literal descendant of Aaron could claim it without even ordination, there is obviously some facet of priesthood authority's durability that we have not pinned down. Also note that I do not claim that any remaining priesthood authority 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment

Navidad

Your comments have warmed my soul. That you, a member of a different denomination, found comfort and interest in my words, brings me great joy. And not only that, but from. Mennonite! My mother's roots include a very strong strain of faithful Anabaptists from the Ukrainian colonies, the Lowlands, and even a few from Zürich.

As an historian I am less qualified to speak about apostasy among those now living. That would be more of a sociologist...or a priesthood leader who has had experience with those who choose their own path apart from the community (ειρησησ). As a free thinker, I have empathy for such, but the goal of my own intellectual pursuits is to strengthen my bond to my community, therefore I cannot sympathize with such, and hence cannot hope to understand or expound on the subject.

Again, thank you for your comments. I hope your faith in our Lord was strengthened by my writing, and that you,in turn, will be a strength to others.

Gregor

Link to comment

David

How can I explain so you will understand? Joseph's comments, obviously true, pertain only to Celestial baptism. The President of the Church only teaches doctrine that pertains to the Church of the Firstborn. Those who inherit the Terrestrial glory are also saved from their sins, for they inherit the glory of the Son. Can they come there without baptism? Does the Prophet administer such baptisms? 

There are more things in heaven and Earth, David, than are dreamt of in our doctrine. Believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. How God saves his children outside the Temple has not yet been revealed to the Latter Day Saints. I am suggesting that we look around and perceive the work he is already doing.

Gregor

Link to comment
17 hours ago, Gkmchardy said:

Navidad

Your comments have warmed my soul. That you, a member of a different denomination, found comfort and interest in my words, brings me great joy. And not only that, but from. Mennonite! My mother's roots include a very strong strain of faithful Anabaptists from the Ukrainian colonies, the Lowlands, and even a few from Zürich.

As an historian I am less qualified to speak about apostasy among those now living. That would be more of a sociologist...or a priesthood leader who has had experience with those who choose their own path apart from the community (ειρησησ). As a free thinker, I have empathy for such, but the goal of my own intellectual pursuits is to strengthen my bond to my community, therefore I cannot sympathize with such, and hence cannot hope to understand or expound on the subject.

Again, thank you for your comments. I hope your faith in our Lord was strengthened by my writing, and that you,in turn, will be a strength to others.

Gregor

If you ever come to the Mexican colonies here in Chihuahua, you are more than welcome to stay in our home. Chihuahua is full of Mennonites with Russian/Ukrainian roots. We have attended some of their services, but their language is completely incomprehensible to one raised outside their community. They are culturally very different from the Mennonites with which I was raised in Pennsylvania. We attend the old historic (redundant?) first ward in Colonia Juarez. I am a historian of the Mexican Mormon colonies, active in MHA, and would be happy to take you around to the historic sites in our area. The LeBaron colonies are also close by and have significant historical ties to the LDS colonies. Blessings!

Link to comment

Navidad

A good friend in my ward (last name of Whetten) grew up in Colonia Juarez. He has delightful stories, as well as terrifying ones. He has invited me down several times, and while I'm predisposed to accepting the invitation, my wife will have nothing to do with traveling to Mexico. We've lived in AZ for 30 years now and never once been to Rocky Point. Sad. 

Link to comment

Once again, back to Gregor McHardy’s book. In this post, I will be sharing a few of my thoughts on the chapter titled: “MYTH 1 – TWELVE APOSTLES WERE ALL MARTYRED” (pp. 1-32).

With all due respect to Gregor, I found this chapter to be a bit confusing. Gregor opens the chapter with:

>> It is commonly thought among Christians of all denominations, including the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that, except for John, all of Jesus’ original apostles were killed. (Page 1)>>

Perhaps it is just me, but this opening statement alone makes the chapter title somewhat confusing. If it is acknowledged by pretty much all professing Christians that the apostle John was not martyred, why propose that the " TWELVE APOSTLES WERE ALL MARTYRED” is a “MYTH”?

Further, I am not aware of any professing Christian who believes that Judas Iscariot was martyred—he committed suicide! As such, pretty much all professing Christians (including Latter-day Saints) acknowledge that at least two of Jesus Christ’s original twelve apostles were not martyred.

As for the other ten apostles of the original twelve, Gregor has strong doubts that Matthew, Simon the Zealot and Thaddeus were martyred. Gregor cites a document attributed to St. Hippolytus— On the Twelve Apostles - link—as evidence for his assessment of those three.

Concerning Hippolytus, Gregor wrote:

>>In the following pages we discuss the lands, both far and near, the ended up going to, and where they most likely died, consulting an author named Hippolytus, a second-century church leader.>> (Page 4)

A correction is needed here—though Hippolytus was born in the late second century, he did not became a “church leader" until the third century. It was also in the third century that his known works were composed.

As for the work, On the Twelve Apostles, many scholars believe that it was pseudepigraphal.

Moving on, the question that needs to be addressed is whether or not there is scholarly support concerning the martyrdom of the ten of the original twelve apostles in question. As a matter of fact there is. In 2014 Sean McDowell submitted a dissertation to the faculty of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for the partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy. His dissertation—“A Historical Evaluation of the Evidence for the Death of the Apostles as Martyrs for Their Faith” —was accepted and is available online via THIS LINK.

The following is from the “Conclusion" of his scholarly, in depth dissertation:

>>As for the individual apostles, the historical evidence leads to the following assessments regarding the likelihood of their martyrdoms:

1. Peter: the highest possible probability

2. Paul: the highest possible probability

3. James, brother of Jesus: very probably true

4. John, the son of Zebedee: improbable

5. Thomas: more probable than not

6. Andrew: more probable than not

7. James, son of Zebedee: highest possible probability

8. Philip: possible

9. Bartholomew: more possible than not

10. Matthew: possible

11. James, son of Alphaeus: more possible than not

12. Thaddeus: possible

13. Simon the Zealot: possible

14. Matthias: possible

In sum, there are three apostles in the category of the highest possible probability, one that is very probably true, one that is more probable than not, one that is more plausible than not, seven that are as plausible as not, and one that is improbable. Thus, of the 14 apostles, six are at least more plausible than not, seven are as plausible as not, and only one, John, is lower than plausible. (Pages 427, 428)

After reading McDowell’s dissertation (as well as his subsequently published book, The Fate of the Apostles (2015 - Google Books), I cannot in good faith relegate the martyrdom of ten of the original twelve apostles to mere “MYTH”.

 

Grace and peace,

David

P.S. A related post has been published at Articuli Fidei.

 

Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...