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How do the LDS respond to the following controversial questions about the first vision?

How do the LDS respond to the following controversial questions about the first vision? Topic: How to write a learning journal example
June 16, 2019 / By Chonsie
Question: I did not write these questions, but I can't deny that they are good questions that are worthy of good answers. I found these, and other First Vision-related questions at the following website: http://www.i4m.com/think/lists/mormon_questions.htm Question # 1: If Jesus Christ and God the Father really told Joseph Smith in 1820 that all churches were an abomination, then why did he try joining the Methodist church in June of 1828? Records show that in June of 1828, Joseph Smith applied for membership in his wife's Methodist Church. He also joined Methodist classes taught there. Source: (The Amboy Journal, Amboy, IL, details Smith's activity in the Methodist Church in 1828. April 30, 1879 p. 1; May 21, 1879 p.1; June 11, 1879, p.1; July 2, 1879 p.1.) Question #2: If Joseph Smith saw God in 1820, why did he pray in his room in 1823 to find out "if a Supreme being did exist?" In the first history of Mormonism from 1835 written under Joseph Smith's direction, it says that the night of September 1823 Joseph Smith began praying in his bed to learn "the all important information, if a Supreme being did exist, to have an assurance that he was accepted of him." SOURCE: (LDS periodical Messenger and Advocate, Kirtland, Ohio, Feb. 1835) How could that possibly make sense if Smith had already seen God face-to-face some three years earlier. Question # 3: If Joseph Smith saw God the Father in the flesh with with a body in 1820, why did he teach later than God the Father did not have a physical body? Up until the last version of the "First Vision" story, Joseph Smith taught that God the Father did not have a body. For example, in 1835 Joseph Smith taught a class of Elders the "Lectures on Faith" which were also printed in the scripture volume Doctrine and Covenants. In this original Doctrine and Covenants, Joseph Smith stated that God the Father was a personage of spirit. In Section 5 we find this statement about the Godhead: "The Father being a personage of spirit, glory and power: possessing all perfection and fulness: The Son, who was in the bosom of the Father, a personage of tabernacle, made, or fashioned like unto man, or being in the form and likeness of man." - Doctrine and Covenants, 1835 Edition, p. 53 LDS or non LDS, please share your thoughts on these questions with the "rest of the class." Ok, I have 3 responses so far. Two are pro Mormon one is anything but. Mormons, in all fairness, some of the sources cited ARE FROM MORMON SCRIPTURE. Many LDS have a hard time believing that Joseph Smith produced the following quote that comes directly from LDS publications. "Come on! ye prosecutors! ye false swearers! All hell, boil over! Ye burning mountains, roll down your lava! for I will come out on top at last. I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him; but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet...When they can get rid of me, the devil will also go." (History of the Church, Vol. 6, p. 408) - Joseph Smith: founder, prophet, seer, and revelator of The Church of Jesus Chr
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Best Answers: How do the LDS respond to the following controversial questions about the first vision?

Aubrey Aubrey | 4 days ago
1: the "records" are a late recollection and they do not say that JS "applied for membership." these are not church records but a hostile recollection from cousins of ES long after the fact. they say that the methodist minister inscribed JS's name in the class book....point of fact: methodists required people to be "probationers" for @least 6 months prior to becoming members. so how did JS manage to do this in days (which is how long the source says his name was in the class book)? plus the necessity of baptism, and rules about how lapsed members were to be handled all make the claim that JS was a methodist extremely implausible. authentic denominational membership record DON'T substantiate such a claim, while eyewitness reminiscences and contemporary records provide strong evidence that this claim is not valid. #2: this was a recollection (again later) from OC printed in the kirtland, ohio newspaper in february 1835. but notice that the statement is NOT questioning whether of not there is God but whether or not God is ok w/JS's actions. JS was PRAYING..."calling upon the LORD"...so obviously a belief in the Divine was NOT in question. but after a few years it seems logical to accept that JS MAY have had a question regarding his own value in the Lord's sight. I know I have had/expect to have this question on a regular basis thru-out my life. #3: the LoF were included in the D&C for a time w/o their ever being scripture....like an index or the bible dictionary. I repeat - they were never doctrine. LDS doctrine is NOT determined by inclusion between the covers of a book. in fact, when they were taken from the D&C it was for the reason that they "were never presented to nor accepted by the Church as being otherwise than theological lectures or lessons". (church official statement @the time) as opposed to the remaining pages of the D&C - which are officially recognized as revelation given specifically. that point being made - God is spirit...but He also has a body glorified and perfected so like ours but different. if JS struggled in trying to explain that it is certainly understandable. BUT the LoF clearly taught a separation of the Father and Son. they clearly taught that the Father and Son were "embodied," with visible forms having precise dimensions and position in space. and evidence from the scripture, church members, and even the church's antagonists all demonstrate that these doctrines go back to the earliest days of the restoration. as to your add'l comments...just prior to this statement JS made a POINT that he was mimicking paul's statements in Corinthians about "boasting" to make a point.
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Aubrey Originally Answered: How do the LDS respond to the following controversial questions about the first vision?
1: the "records" are a late recollection and they do not say that JS "applied for membership." these are not church records but a hostile recollection from cousins of ES long after the fact. they say that the methodist minister inscribed JS's name in the class book....point of fact: methodists required people to be "probationers" for @least 6 months prior to becoming members. so how did JS manage to do this in days (which is how long the source says his name was in the class book)? plus the necessity of baptism, and rules about how lapsed members were to be handled all make the claim that JS was a methodist extremely implausible. authentic denominational membership record DON'T substantiate such a claim, while eyewitness reminiscences and contemporary records provide strong evidence that this claim is not valid. #2: this was a recollection (again later) from OC printed in the kirtland, ohio newspaper in february 1835. but notice that the statement is NOT questioning whether of not there is God but whether or not God is ok w/JS's actions. JS was PRAYING..."calling upon the LORD"...so obviously a belief in the Divine was NOT in question. but after a few years it seems logical to accept that JS MAY have had a question regarding his own value in the Lord's sight. I know I have had/expect to have this question on a regular basis thru-out my life. #3: the LoF were included in the D&C for a time w/o their ever being scripture....like an index or the bible dictionary. I repeat - they were never doctrine. LDS doctrine is NOT determined by inclusion between the covers of a book. in fact, when they were taken from the D&C it was for the reason that they "were never presented to nor accepted by the Church as being otherwise than theological lectures or lessons". (church official statement @the time) as opposed to the remaining pages of the D&C - which are officially recognized as revelation given specifically. that point being made - God is spirit...but He also has a body glorified and perfected so like ours but different. if JS struggled in trying to explain that it is certainly understandable. BUT the LoF clearly taught a separation of the Father and Son. they clearly taught that the Father and Son were "embodied," with visible forms having precise dimensions and position in space. and evidence from the scripture, church members, and even the church's antagonists all demonstrate that these doctrines go back to the earliest days of the restoration. as to your add'l comments...just prior to this statement JS made a POINT that he was mimicking paul's statements in Corinthians about "boasting" to make a point.

Abaigael Abaigael
I endorse Bork and Toa. Joseph recorded that he was partial to the Methodists before the first vision took place. That he maintained some partiality while learning directly from God and Moroni does not bother me. He had to make peace with his in-laws and still live in society while they persecuted him for being so different. God is a spiritual being. The Bible confirms that as well. His spiritual glory however, includes a glorified, tangible body. Christ was mortal like us before his resurrection and subsequent glory like unto the Father. For whatever reason, Joseph made a distinction between the Father's glory and Christ's glory. He prayed to know his own status before God. There was never a question about whether or not God existed, but rather whether or not he was in good standing before God.
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Spencer Spencer
I have no problem with Joseph Smith's statement in you additional details. Joseph Smith knew about those who were trying to kill him and mentioned it in some of his talks. I think that the flavor of his fiery message is the greatness of the work of God and the restoration of the gospel in the last days and the great opposition to it. Those who have eyes to see know that the ongoing work of God in preparation for the second coming of Christ is the greatest miracle ever seen in the history of the world. It is greater than the splitting of the Red Sea. Yet is goes on unnoticed by the vast majority.
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Osmond Osmond
The Amboy Journal is not scripture. The Messenger and Advocate is not scripture. As far as your quote from the Doctrine and Covenants goes, the New Testament tells us that we must worship God in spirit and in truth. By your logic, we cannot possibly worship God properly unless we drop dead. A being may be spirit and also have a tangible, physical nature. Did Jesus of Nazareth not claim that he himself was Jehovah? (Hint, yes, he did.) I don't know why you expect us to be infallible. Do you hold your own church to that same standard? I doubt it. You quibble about human imperfection, yet you never bother to seek God out and learn what he thinks about our church.
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Leopold Leopold
Question 1. As a mormon this doesnt really concern me. A church is better than no church. The church did not officially start until 1830. Maybe he did that to please Emma or her parents/friends? I dont know. Maybe he just wanted the feeling of companionship that comes from being in an organization...I guess what I am trying to say is...So what? Question 2. When you have an incredible spiritual experience, and then have nothing for a long time after that you might start to doubt yourself. I know I have, that is how many people who leave the church do it they forget their own personal experiences with the feeling of truth and they forget things. For Joseph, added to the fact that every person he told (or at least many of them) ridiculed him for his claim to have seen God. He was persecuted and I guarantee he was lonely. He might have even doubted himself as to if he really experienced those things. My point is, he was having a very hard time. I am sure he was thinking the question every single person on the planet thinks. If there is a God, why would he let me suffer and feel alone? I dont know if that is what really was going on. But I can say that is how I would feel if I were in Joseph Smith's shoes during that time. Question 3. I have a copy of the Lectures on Faith that Joseph Smith said. In the Appendix of that book it makes a specific reference to the quote you provided. That God is a personage of Spirit. The Answer is in that book. I can summarize their well written answer like this. Joseph Smith says personage specifically and I think that is the key to understand what he meant. One other time he used the word personage was in his first vision account. He said that he saw two personages whose brightness and glory defy all description. This is still consistent with his accounts, saying that God has a body. He just said it in a different, more specific way. (There is more to explain on this personage of spirit topic. But I wont go into further detail if you really want to know the answer buy Lectures on Faith on Amazon and read it yourself. Its not that expensive) For your additional details. I have seen that before. And I honestly cringe when I read that. I am not going to defend what he said, I will just try to give some insight as to why he said it possibly. I really wonder how people could persecute the Mormon church and not understand its history. Does anyone know and understand what was going on during the time Joseph Smith said that? I couldn't find a specific date but it was given in the Nauvoo time period. Up to this point, the church has been driven out of every single place they inhabited. They were killed, beaten, spit upon, tarred and feathered and ultimately driven from their homes with little to no possessions. Nauvoo was their first real successful settlement. All of these things did not happen in a foreign land. It happened in America, where people are supposed to be free to live and worship as they please. Despite all of their sacrifices, people still attacked them. I wonder why? What drives people to persecute and murder someone who believes differently? Nauvoo was the high point in the early church. It was so successful that it rivaled Chicago. If I were Joseph Smith I would probably want to boast a little too. I would be wrong too, because it really was God who led them and protected them so I think Joseph should have given a little more credit to God and maybe not say I boast so much. But hey, nobody is perfect. Even prophets.
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Leopold Originally Answered: Vision problems / darkened vision/ sparkly vision?
I'm not a doc, but it sounds like you might have a detached retina? You need do a little research and find a good eye specialist in your area and then go and get this problem looked at. Here is a link that might help you. Please don't let this go any longer as your eyesight is just too precious to not take care of! http://www.docshop.com/education/vision/... If the doctor blows you off you just keep insisting, as you have to be your own advocate and find out what it going on here!

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