A drive-by evangelist by the name of "Further the Kingdom" recently visited my blog and left the following comment totally unrelated to that post. I wonder how often this happens to anyone else:
"Here’s a million dollar question – If you were to die right now, would you qualify for the celestial kingdom? If you’re like most Mormons, you’re not sure. You try hard to be as good as possible, but you still don’t know if you’ve done enough. If the Book of Mormon is really scripture, this hope will always elude you. Alma 11:37 says God cannot save you in your sins. Are all of your sins forgiven? Moroni 10:32 says you must be perfected in Christ, which can only be done by denying yourself of “all ungodliness”. Have you done that?
"Do you repent on a regular basis? If so, then it is clear that you sin on a regular basis, since only those who break the commandments need to repent. 1 Nephi 3:7 states that you are able to keep His commandments. In fact according to D&C 25:15, you are required to keep them continually! Since you haven’t done this so far, why assume you will in the future? Of course, we should all try to be holy; but if you think that sinning less will qualify you to live in God’s presence, you are mistaken (Gal 3:1-11). The assumption that good works are required for forgiveness only cheapens Christ’s atonement, making it nothing more than a partial payment. God chooses to justify us by faith. Jesus alone does the “perfecting” (Heb 10:14). God gives peace to those who trust in Him alone. If you don’t have this peace, it’s probably because at least a part of you trusts in yourself. Questions? Visit us at www.gotforgiveness.com"
So here's my ten cent answer to his "million dollar" question:
"If you were to die right now, would you qualify for the celestial kingdom?" Yes, because of my faith in Christ. That's the "good news." It's actually great news. And "most Mormons" that understand the gospel properly should have hope for the same--as well as true peace.
"If you’re like most Mormons, you’re not sure." Really? Do "most Mormons" not understand the gospel properly? I'm sure some don't, but "most"? I'm a little skeptical of that statistic. But if that's true, I guess I've got my work cut out for me! As a gospel teacher, we all have the ability to truly "further the kingdom". I guess I'd start by recommending the books"Believing Christ" and "Following Christ" by Stephen E. Robinson.
I'd love to have this kind of scriptural/gospel conversation with you in my living room; maybe this blog will suffice. But first it would be helpful to do away with all of the preceding blanket (and wrong) assertions and stop misconstruing scriptural references. I'll add that to my now growing list of tips for witnessing to Mormons. Maybe then we can have an actual dialogue about what I believe.
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