Month: January 2007

Isaiah 2 (2 Nephi 12) – the beginning of our Isaiah comparisons

Our church family just poured over Isaiah 2 in our inductive study last night. Each week, we will be studying a new chapter together.

I am going to need some clarification from LDS friends on whether this is standard LDS belief as I quote various authors on Isaiah 2.

ISAIAH 2:2-3

(1) The mountain of the LORD’s house is the Salt Lake Temple

1-59038-170-x-t.jpgVictor L. Ludlow in his book Unlocking Isaiah In The Book of Mormon (SLC: Deseret, 2003) notes, (more…)

LDS Blogspotting by an Evangelical

Kerry Shirts, alias the Backyard Professor, has posted “Creation Ex Nihilo Ideas.”  As a firm believer in Jehovah who creates ex nihilo, I will get back with Kerry on this.

Thinking of a Christian literalist who has been on the circuit to popularize creationism to the masses in past days, Jared over at LDS Science Review now reports, “Kent Hovind Sentenced to 10 years.”  As I have already typed, I do pray for this man and his wife.

Also, Jared linked me over to Mormons and Evolution with his article “Variant LDS Creationism.”  Is this one of the main blogs that strives to integrate LDS belief with science?

On Common Consent, Kathleen had me intrigued with her post, “Translating Correctly.”

And sort of along the same vein, Matt B. hammers out on Mormon Mentality, “My beef with our cross-referenced standard works, and the questions it raises.”  Notice DKL’s comments in the thread.  I don’t think he would get along very well with KJV-Only Baptists because of his aversion to the traditional translation.  Does he care much for the underlying textus receptus?

Joe Spencer in the Feast Upon the Word blog poses a question that seems to contradict feasting, by asking, “What is the place of historico-critical methodology in LDS teaching?”  If he were to ask the same question to me in the sphere of Bible teaching, I would not hesitate in responding, “Higher criticism though glittering with a cloak of piety attempts to systematically shred fundamental truth by rationale logic but ends up wallowing in individualistic subjectivism.”  But I acknowledge that the science of faith-saturated “lower criticism” is a different breed altogether.

And last of all, Elise’s “Maturing Views of the Sacrament” on Sunstone Blog caught my attention and had me thinking personally about the church ordinance as joyous celebration.  The Lord’s Supper is a visual feasting on the Lord Jesus and His work of glad tidings rather than upon my meager awareness or attempts at personal righteousness.  If I spent the time in communion, remembering my past performance rather than His, I would be a dismal mess on a repeated basis.  Every time I celebrate the Lord’s Supper, the moving picture of His grace, displayed through His blood shed and body broken, drowns out all my sin.  (btw, I did catch Elise’s word choice of “union”.)

James E. Faust on John 3:5

The Second Counselor to President Gordon B. Hinckley is quoted in Latter-Day Commentary on the New Testament: The Four Gospels (American Fork: Covenant Communications, 2002) by Ed J. Pinegar, K. Douglas Bassett, and Ted L. Earl.

In the blowing winds of the intermountain West, James Faust makes the interpretation on John 3:5 distinct and sharp for LDS.
California Dreamin'

John 3:5 – Born of Water and of the Spirit

Richard Lloyd Anderson teaches in the Guide To The Life of Christ (FARMS Reprint, 1999):

The Protestant Problem

At the resurrection Jesus sent his apostles with the command to preach and baptize (Matt. 28:19-20), giving the double requirement. “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved” (Mark 16:16). Yet the Protestant reformers taught that grace alone and faith alone brought salvation. Because Christ was baptized and established the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, Protestants generally emphasize these two ceremonies, though not firmly requiring any ceremony as necessary for salvation. Popularly, baptism is explained as “an outward sign of an inward grace,” advisable but not required by God. But Jesus said, “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God” (John 3:5). Some claim that “born of water” refers to one’s physical birth, coming out of the amniotic fluid of the mother’s womb. According to this interpretation, Jesus only asked Nicodemus to be born of the Spirit after the fluid of physical birth. This is forced however, for it contradicts John’s context, the apostle’s interpretation, and Jewish terminology of the time. (more…)

Blog Exchange 2 with Blake Ostler

Blake commented over at the New Cool Thang:

Todd: I have read your post — all of it. Frankly, it is so far ranging with so little contact with responsible issues that I choose to not respond on your blog. I invite you to raise issues in smaller bites here so that we can deal with them. So come back here and let us engage in the context of this discussion. It would be irresponsible to allow such a thread-jack.

However, I will observe that your very world-view of scripture is upset by this issue because you deal with these scriptural passages by rejecting premise (4) and asserting that they just don’t mean what they say. Yet how can a fundamentalist Baptist say that? The biggest problem is that you read the Old Testament through the lens of baptist theology as if the Hebrews were just fundamentalist Baptists. (BTW many Mormons make the same mistake of assuming that the writers of the Old Testament were just Mormon but a long time ago). So engage in this discussion responsibly and in a way that allows us to respond to your objections. Your post is just not focused enough to allow any coherent response that would be a meaningful dialogue as I see it.

I appreciate Blake reading my post.  And I acknowledge the “far ranging” aspects.  On this thread, let me try again by narrowing my comments in the discussion to premise 4 or what Blake chooses.  And on this particular post, I desire to exclusively limit the commenting only between Blake and myself, not to alienate anyone else, but for the sake of focus and my sanity if he is willing.  But before I share a blurb on premise 4, can Blake share with me his sources by John Piper?  I have a voracious appetite for reading and would like to gain possession of the book Blake consulted.