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Joseph Smith Knew More Than Christ?

October 30, 2008

I am posting Berean’s studies here with his permission.

Prophecy Studies in the D & C

by Berean

The Mormon Church claims to have a modern day prophet and the Church boasts in having modern day revelation since the living oracles (modern day prophets) take precedence over the written scriptures. One sure way to test whether one is a prophet or not is to test the revelations they gave and see if it measures up to the test that God gave man to test a so-called prophet.

One of the most sought after questions among believers and otherwise revolves around when Christ will return. Many abstract religions and cults have made the dreadful mistake of predicting the return of Christ. The most notorious for making this mistake are the Jehovah’s Witnesses. After their last blunder in setting the date for 1975 in which they lost many members when the prophecy didn’t happen, the Watchtower organization is now more hesitant in making that assertion. Just making that prediction or statement even once forever rules out that so-called religion being credible and the leader of that religion (prophet) should be ignored from that point on.

What does this have to do with Mormonism? This issue of the Second Advent is a biggie with the Mormons. It may not be now, but it was in the past and it especially was with Joseph Smith. It was so important to him that he brought the subject up in the D&C and in other LDS historical writing.

In D&C 130:14-17 Joseph Smith is supposedly given revelation as to the return of Christ because he was “praying very earnestly to know the time of the coming of the Son of Man.” Joseph was asking for information that even Jesus didn’t know at that time in His earthly ministry (Matthew 24:36). In D&C 130:14 Joseph “heard a voice”. The identity of that “voice” is never identified which is suspicious (see 1 John 4:1). We read in D&C 130:15 that this “voice” tells Joseph that “IF thou livest until thou are eighty-five years old, thou shalt see the face of the Son of Man”. If Joseph Smith would have been knowledgeable of Bible texts such as:

1 John 4:1
1 Thes 5:21
Acts 17:10-11
Matthew 24:36
Deut 18:22

then he wouldn’t have made the “rookie prophet” mistake not only once, but twice, of getting involved in this Satanic trap of planning out the return of Christ. In D&C 130:17 Joseph Smith tells us that “the coming of the Son of Man will not be any sooner than that time.” How does he know that? Jesus could have returned an hour after Joseph Smith wrote that. Christ is not bound by what Joseph Smith says. By Joseph Smith saying that he indirectly was date setting – not saying when Christ would return, but that Christ was going to hold off until Joseph Smith was at least 85 years old.

The details of D&C 130:14-17 are very specific numbers and definitely conflict with Matthew 24:36. The “IF” in D&C 130:15 is puzzling because it paints the Mormon god as being unsure how long Joseph Smith would live. Almighty God knows how long we all are going to live and wouldn’t engage in this type of dialogue or give half-answers because He never did in the Old or the New Testament. What D&C 130 doesn’t rule out are all those Mormons who would live should Joseph Smith not make it to his 85th birthday. All Mormons would have to have done back then was add up when Joseph Smith would have turned 85 and then stand outside and expect the Savior to return based on what Joseph Smith said. Since Joseph Smith didn’t make it to his 85th, that doesn’t mean all the Mormons would die with Joseph Smith and not be around later at that time.

This revelation in D&C 130 was written in April 1843 when Joseph Smith was 37 years old. Let’s do some math: 85 years old subtract 37 (present age) leaves 48 years remaining. Add 48 years to 1843 and we have the year 1891. What is significant about this year?

Joseph Smith gave a similar revelation in Kirtland, Ohio on February 14, 1835 “because God commanded it, and it was made known to him by vision and by the Holy Spirit.” He stated that Christ would return in 56 years (History of the Church, Vol.2, page 182). Add 56 years to 1835. What do you get? Lo and behold – it’s 1891 – the same year as the 1843 revelation! The D&C 130 revelation matches the one in 1835. They were both wrong. Look again at the source of Joseph Smith’s information in the 1835 revelation: it was by vision and by the Holy Spirit; God commanded it. That is a very powerful statement. There is no guessing here who the “voice” is in this revelation compared to the one in D&C 130. Again, if Joseph Smith would have looked at his Bible he would have known that this contradicts what God had already revealed and therefore this “revelation” couldn’t be from Almighty God, but rather a false spirit.

Deut 18:22 says that Joseph Smith is a false prophet completely just on this fact alone not to mention him contradicting scripture in Matthew 24:36. The LDS Manual “Preparing for Exaltation” states on page 85:

“God will never give personal revelation that contradicts what has already been revealed in scriptures.”

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. November 2, 2008 4:34 am

    Interesting post. I think you would find this guys blog quite thought provoking.

  2. November 8, 2008 11:01 pm

    Hi! Thanks for your comment. I reviewed his blog, but couldn’t quite get the connection to this post. Could you summarize for me? Is this guy saying that Joseph Smith saw Christ return because he believes Christ appeared to him before JS died? Or because he thinks JS will return again before Christ’s return?

    Thanks

  3. Jessica permalink
    January 4, 2009 9:22 pm

    In D&C 130 Joseph Smith heard, “Joseph, my son, if thou livest until thou art eighty-five years old, thou shalt see the face of the Son of Man; therefore let this suffice.” It is the Father, Heavenly Father speaking to him. The voice is identified in the verse and you are incorrect in stating that it is not. God’s ways are higher than our ways. Joseph sought comfort and answers from the Lord and received a response that he need not be concerned about the matter. The Lord withheld the time of the Second Coming from him and only God knows when it will be. I find your writing to be mostly based on assumptions, rather than faith or a desire to gain knowledge of truths. I suggest reading the scriptures and praying for peace and knowledge to better understand their meaning. You won’t get truth from the scriptures if you read them searching for conspiracy theories or manipulations.

  4. January 5, 2009 8:45 pm

    I’ve read this passage many times, and I just can’t see that it is obviously predicting the “Second Coming.”

    All it says is that if Joseph lived long enough, he’d see Jesus. Nothing in there about the Second Coming at all. The way I read it, God is basically telling Joseph “quit worrying about this issue. You will eventually see Jesus again. Let that be enough for you, and quit bugging me about this.”

    I really don’t think there’s much hay for Evangelicals to make out of this passage.

  5. January 6, 2009 3:13 am

    Hi Jessica! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by. I hope that if you stick around you will see from my posts that I am a sincere follower of Jesus Christ who loves reading the Scriptures to gain knowledge of the Truth. One of the Scriptures that motivated me to start this blog was Matthew 24:11 where Jesus promised that in the latter days false prophets would arise and would deceive many. He promised to preserve His words so that we would be able to compare His teachings with false prophets that would come. In the Old Testament, God told the people not to follow prophets who tried to get them to go after “other gods” who they had not known before (Deut. 13:1-3). He also warned them not to listen to a prophet who made a prediction that did not come to pass (Deut. 18:22). Further, the penalty for any so-called prophet who made 1 false prophecy was death (Deut. 18:20) showing that God takes false prophecies very seriously.

    The Apostle Paul also warned us not to receive false prophets and false teachers. He warned us to reject anyone who preaches “another gospel” or “another Jesus.” Paul defined the gospel for us in I Cor. 15:1-8. The Biblical gospel in a nutshell is this: Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of the one and only True, Eternal God revealed Himself publicly to the world, died on a cross to pay the full penalty for all of our sins, was buried, and on the third day rose again from the grave. He promised to save everyone who puts their faith in Him alone for their salvation and not in their own works (John 3:16, 6:28-29, Rom. 4:4-5, Eph. 2:8-9). As you will see (if you keep reading here), I have a firm conviction that Mormonism, while on the outside has an appearance of Christianity, is actually very deceptively and subtly preaching “another gospel” and “another Jesus” (II Cor. 11:3-4). I love Mormons very much and want to share with them the things I believe. You are most welcome to share your thoughts and perspective here.

    Seth,

    Sorry this one’s not very compelling for you. It’s interesting to me that the date given in D&C matches with the prophecy he gave in Kirtland, Ohio. If you don’t believe the D&C one is actually a prediction, what about the Kirtland one?

  6. January 6, 2009 6:12 am

    I’d be interested in hearing more details and cites if you have them handy.

  7. January 7, 2009 2:54 am

    Seth, Here’s a link to the Kirtland prophecy given February 14, 1835 (it’s also in History of the Church, vol. 2, p. 182)

    http://www.boap.org/LDS/Parallel/1834-38/14Feb35.html#N_1_

    As noted in the footnote, it is believed that this prediction is “Undoubtedly a reference to his experience mentioned in D&C 130:14-17”

    If you are interested in reviewing some other prophecies here’s a link to check out:

    The Prophecies of Joseph Smith

    I really appreciate your respectful comments. Thanks 🙂

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