Thursday, December 22, 2011

Do Mormon's Worship Joseph Smith?

This is another question that missionaries and members of the church have faced and I'll address it in this post. To begin I'm going to have you take a look at the name of our Church, it is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Despite the controversy it is not The Church of Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith was called to be the prophet that restored the Church of Jesus Christ in these latter-days, but he is not the means by which salvation comes. Acts 4:12 says, "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.We do not worship Joseph Smith, we do not baptize in his name, we do not pray to Joseph Smith to even say that carries a deep offense. Salvation is in Christ, and Him only.

We worship quite differently than some congregations of other faiths. We sing Hymns to glorify God and Jesus Christ His Son. The sacred ordinance of the Sacrament is blessed by ones having authority from God and is then passed by others holding authority as well. Every week, we remember our promise to God when we were baptized, to keep His commandments and remember Jesus Christ continually. Talks are given by members of the congregation about varying subjects. They are asked weeks in advance to be prepared to share their personal feelings and their testimonies of the assigned topic. Afterwards, the congregation breaks up for Sunday school, children gather with children, adults with adults and our taught about the Savior and His gospel.

Baptism in our church is an essential part of accepting Christ's redeeming Sacrifice. As Peter, John the Baptist and the Savior Himself taught, baptism is done for a remission or a removal of our sins. Christ has commanded that all must be baptized if they wish to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (John 3:5). As Peter says in Acts 2:38 "Repent, and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins..." We baptize in the name of Jesus Christ because He is our Redeemer, not Joseph Smith.

Our prayers also differ from other faiths. We do as Jesus directed to pray to God the Father in the name of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 6:9) We pray in the name of Jesus Christ because He is our mediator with the Father. He died for us and is the One who salvation springs from. Thus our prayers are petitioned to the Father through  Christ's sacred atonement and name. We may thank God for the many blessings each of us have. We may also ask for assistance in areas that we are struggling and we must always ask that His will may be done even if it's not what we asked for or what we want. (Luke 22:42)

I hope this helps everyone understand that we appreciate Joseph Smith for what He did, just as good people from other Christian faiths appreciate Paul and Peter, Luke and Mark and John and James. But, we hold Joseph Smith in such high regards because without the events of 1820 and thereafter we would be indistinguishable and would have no religion. Our gratitude for the prophet Joseph remains at just that, gratitude. Not worshiping, or praying to or even thinking that his name might render some portion of Salvation. I love Jesus Christ. I know He lives.

1 comment:

  1. So many people think Mormons worship Joseph Smith and the answer it that they do not. Read this