Mormonism Without The LDS Church


SaltLakeTempleNightI am a Mormon. I am not a member of the LDS Church. There is a difference between the two – a big difference. The LDS Church does not define Mormonism. The LDS Church has changed dramatically from what God revealed through Joseph Smith. That memory has been lost, altered, redefined, added unto, retracted from and otherwise transformed by leaders of the LDS Church.

For the most part, I believe the change was unintentional. In fact, it was well-intentioned. The leaders were, and I believe continue to be, fundamentally interested in the greater good the LDS Church can do in the absence of direct revelation. The desire is commendable. The outcome is tragic. The death of Joseph Smith was more than tragic. It marked the beginning of forgetting.

In some cases change was done on purpose. It was intentional. The narrative was altered to fit more in line with then-current political expediency. It continues to change today. I have watched it change gradually in my lifetime. The LDS Church has redefined itself in an effort to appeal to a larger audience. In doing so, it has lost the foundational authority and endorsement of the Lord.

Absence of Direct Revelation

The majority of revelations recorded in the Doctrine and Covenants were received in a ten-year period from 1828 to 1838. Many of the revelations were received in the presence of others who witnessed the physical effects upon Joseph as he dictated the words flowing into his soul. This was a prophet, one through whom the Lord spoke. He received revelations even as did Moses.

With the death of Joseph, his followers were lost. They did not know what to do. Joseph had appointed a successor, but his brother Hyrum was killed seconds before he was. The church wanted a replacement leader like Joseph. For a season the quorum of the twelve led but soon Brigham took the reins and was voted in as the new president. Joseph was still “The Prophet.”

Every time we sing Praise to the Man, I wonder if the congregation singing the hymn thinks about these lines: “Great is his glory and endless his priesthood. Ever and ever the keys he will hold. Faithful and true, he will enter his kingdom, Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old.” Joseph was revered by his followers, but nobody could replace him, no matter how they tried.

Authority and Endorsement of Christ

At one time the LDS Church was authorized by Jesus Christ as the only true and living church upon the face of the earth today. This is no longer true. There are two types of authority. One is to perform preparatory ordinances. The LDS Church had that authority until recently. The other is to perform the higher or sealing ordinances, authority lost upon the death of Joseph Smith.

In a recent correspondence with a humble and sincere seeker of Jesus Christ, who had left the LDS Church, joined the AUB, then came back, I was deeply impressed with his lament about the loss of the keys. I know what the official LDS narrative says about Brigham proclaiming he had the keys, but some keys cannot be passed on from man to man. This has been made clear to me.

“I am really looking for someone to whom the Lord is giving revelations and is a true successor of Joseph Smith. I am really hoping and praying that the keys as described in Section 132:7,18 & 19 are still on the earth and that there is one anointed and appointed with the ‘power and the keys of this priesthood’ to seal by the Holy Spirit of promise. As verse 8 says, His house is not one of confusion, so there must be only one. If the keys have been lost then I fear the earth will be wasted at the Lord’s coming.”

Verse seven notes “… there is never but one on the earth at a time on whom this power and the keys of the priesthood are conferred …” My friend says he is looking for a true successor to Joseph Smith, one who holds the sealing power. Is that man Thomas Monson? Did he receive it in an unbroken line going back to Joseph Smith? You’ll have to decide that question for yourself.

Follow the Savior, not the Prophet

JesusRedRobeWould God that all the Lord’s people were prophets, and that the Lord would put his spirit upon them!” The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. I honor prophets. I have seen inspiration flow through men upon whom the LDS people have placed the title of prophet. But I do not and will not accept the modern false doctrine espoused that a prophet cannot lead the Church astray.

By tradition, the President of the LDS Church carries the title of prophet, seer and revelator as do each of the members of the quorum of the twelve apostles. I accept them as being some of the best men in the LDS Church, each blessed with gifts and talents used by the Lord to bless and inspire members of the LDS Church. But they cannot claim to secure my salvation in eternity.

I am confident they would agree were I to ask them this question directly – “Can you save me?” Their answer would have to be, “No, I am a man like unto you. Only Christ can save you.” It is to Christ I offer a broken heart and a contrite spirit. That is not something I offer to any man. I confess my sins only to Christ, not to any man, no matter what his position in the LDS Church.

Remembering The Work Of Joseph Smith

I am on a mission to re-evaluate everything I learned growing up in the LDS Church about the history of the restoration, and especially the significance of the revelations received by Joseph. For a man with limited formal education, he certainly was prolific. Not much of a speller or even composer of succinct sentences, he employed scribes to record and edit the revelations received.

The process of revelation is an interesting one. I am familiar with how it works. While closely tied to inspiration, it is a step higher in the idea of placing one’s mind and spirit in tune with the infinite. It requires faith, practice, discipline, effort and a disposition to place the will of the Lord above all that the natural man within us desires. It does not lend itself to purposes of contention.

Joseph recognized this, shared his experience in being unable to translate because of a quarrel with Emma, and taught us how important it is to have a spirit of peace about us as we strive to be in tune with the will of the Lord. Revelation is sacred. It is a gift as is prophecy. Joseph had these gifts in abundance, given him by the Lord to communicate His commands to man upon the earth.

Modifying the History of Mormonism

josephsmith.jpgUnderstanding the history of Mormonism is important if we are to understand what the Lord was trying to accomplish through Joseph Smith. I submit categorically that Joseph did not complete the work he was sent to accomplish. He was cut short. He was rejected by the members of his own church. The doctrines he tried to teach were too radical for their then limited understanding.

We have come a long ways in understanding since the days of Joseph Smith. We have the luxury of one hundred and seventy years of analysis, review, criticism and discussion about what was the real intent of Joseph in sharing some of the things he was allowed to teach. We have forgotten much of what he tried to accomplish. Even the official history was not authored by Joseph Smith.

I hope the efforts of many good people and groups will continue to sort through the deliberate efforts of the LDS Church to conceal the truth and modify the record. Keeping accurate historical records were not as important to the early leaders of the LDS Church as it was to provide to the members a faith-promoting history. Some things were significantly altered, others covered-up.

Restoration Not Meant to Be Institutionalized

I have long been on a journey to reconcile what I have discovered over the years of studying the history of the LDS Church with what I found in documents, journals and diaries that have been coming to light in recent years. I applaud the Church’s efforts to be forthcoming with faithful reproductions of the original source material. I look forward to the ongoing publication efforts.

The restoration of the Lord’s work in these later-days does not belong to a single institution. It is the Lord’s work. He opened the heavens to show that each of us could have a direct relationship with our God. Woe be unto the man or woman who says they are content to receive the word of God from the leaders of the LDS Church. This is wrong. This is not what God intended for us.

I reject the new order of things perpetuated by the LDS Church in which leaders claim the right to issue commandments and direction, followers fall in line, and nobody is encouraged to go to the source to get revelation beyond the rudimentary testimony of the Book of Mormon. Leading a worldwide church through public relations is a fiasco in the making. This is not God’s doing.

LDS Church Has Morphed Mormonism

I have watched as many of the unique aspects of our religion have been denigrated or completely removed from the acceptable orthodoxy in the modern LDS Church. Orthodoxy is a strange thing. What is considered an acceptable view or practice in one generation is completely wiped out in the next simply by the leader’s general conference addresses and key curriculum changes.

I remember prayer circles outside the temple. Today you will be excommunicated for apostasy if you dare engage in such practices. Partaking of the Sacrament is tightly controlled by the church to the point where it is used as a weapon to enforce dogmatic beliefs and views. It is anti-Christ. This last straw broke the camel’s back for me, compelling me to resign from the LDS church.

It amazes me to realize early leaders of the LDS Church encouraged members to be re-baptized as a sign of their willingness to re-commit and more fully live their religion. Today, participating in such a baptism will get you excommunicated for apostasy. Tolerance for anything outside of the secret handbook of instructions is unthinkable. Independent worship is highly discouraged.

Mormonism NOT controlled by the LDS Church

bookofmormon.jpgMormonism requires study and contemplation. Deep thought, pondering and prayer are a must if we are to come close to what the Lord intended in the work commenced through the Prophet Joseph Smith. That work included preparing a people for Zion. No institution can bring about Zion. It must be done in small groups of like-minded saints which have no poor among them.

Truth is Mormonism. All truth, wherever located and from whatever source, in whatever form it is currently practiced, belongs to the Mormon religion. Mormonism is not what the LDS Church says it is. Mormonism is what the Lord revealed through the prophet Joseph, much of which has been rejected by the LDS Church, while trying to dominate and control it through correlation.

I am a Mormon because I accept Joseph Smith as a prophet of God, an instrument in bringing forth scripture I receive as the word of God, including the Book of Mormon and the inspired books in the Pearl of Great Price. I accept the revelations in the Doctrine and Covenants with the recognition that many have been changed, edited, added to or reduced by unauthorized men.

Mormonism Is A Powerful Religion

The beauty of Mormonism is that it can free our souls from dependence upon man or a group of men to turn our hearts to God in strengthening our relationship with Jesus Christ. My baptism and subsequent receipt of the Holy Ghost to an even greater degree in my life are marvelous to me. My sense of personal responsibility has increased and empowered me in tremendous ways.

Mormonism is a dynamic, truth-filled, confident and powerful religion. It reunites our souls with heaven. The Holy Ghost helps us to recognize truth from unorthodox sources, adapt it to our own needs in drawing us to feeling closer to our God and Christ. It is an exciting religion, as long as it is not restricted and controlled by those who feel it is their duty to limit what people can believe.

In Mormonism, true Mormonism, not the limited and restricted version found in the current LDS Church, all are equal before God. We are free to worship according to the dictates of our own conscious. I can participate in the Sacrament in my home. I can worship in the robes of the Holy Priesthood at a dedicated altar in my home. Priesthood is not to preside over but to serve others.

Zion Will Not Come Through An Institution

I am a Mormon. I am not a member of the LDS Church. I am one of many thousands who have come to realize the Lord has set His hand a second time to open the heavens to those who will take the time and trouble to seek the face of the Lord. He can and will reveal Himself to you and me. We do not have to receive the word of the Lord through another man, but direct from Christ.

I invite you to join with me in investigating this movement away from the control of the LDS institution and toward the Lord’s intended way of building Zion – in small groups who serve, teach and encourage one another as the spirit directs, not as the controlled correlated process from secret handbooks dictates. The rejection of the fullness by the institution was foretold.

The Lord has sent his servant with this message to remember the restoration. It was given as a gift to man in our day. The heavens are open again for business. Let every man know the Lord. We do not have to rely on the word of our neighbor. He will guide and direct our lives. He will walk with us. He will direct our paths. I am a witness of these things, one of many thousands.

To find communities for fellowship, visit: http://fellowshipwith.us/

To find someone to baptize you, visit: http://returntotherestoration.com

 

15 Responses

  1. Dear Tim,

    Thank you for this post. This is important to our spiritual welfare; we must understand the big picture.

    Your statement: “The death of Joseph Smith was more than tragic. It marked the beginning of forgetting.”

    This is the key to where we went off course. I tried to think that we went off course in my lifetime, but I can see that it was as you have stated, with the death of Joseph Smith.

    Thank you for this post.

    Very sincerely yours,
    Linda

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  2. Tim,
    Thank you for a great start to the Sabbath Day! This proclamation really has me excited for the upcoming week. Your words have further inspired me to seek this Jesus whom the prophets foretold would save us from this dreary world. Magnificent!
    Your brother in the faith,
    Toby

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    • Praise God, it is beginning. My deepest gratitude to the brave ones at the front edge of this who speak in their own names, at great personal cost, and stand on the hill taking bullets for those coming up behind. I thank God I have lived to see this day!

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  3. I think it is a wonderful thing to see people brought closer to the ultimate truth. Each little stumblingblock of false hood taken away empowers, enlightens, and brings a little more freedom. Tim I see that even since the time you resigned to now that the power of God has worked upon you and it is inspiring.
    I would still as a side note suggest to people that they only consider the idea that section 132 contains some things that are not from God. Think of the enormous stumbling block the idea of only one man being able to hold all of the keys is IF indeed it is a falsehood. Think upon the great and boundless implications if one learned that he could gain key after key without any human being hedging up the way that had some kind of imaginary authority over him. It is something that deserves a little pondering and attention in my opinion. But either way the most important thing for us to do is seek greater light and love. I feel to unite with every human being who loves the light of God and desires to know the truth, whether they be LDS, Catholic, Jew or Hindu, they are all my friends. God bless.

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    • Nate: I’ve had several people tell me over the years this part of section 132 was added after the fact – about there being only one man on the earth who can hold the sealing power. I’ve ignored them in the past but would like to put this one to bed. I’m inclined to agree with you.

      I’m going to do some digging to see where this came from, who added it and why. I’m sure it’s in one of my books on polygamy – probably “In Sacred Loneliness” by Todd Compton – Signature Books. What source do you use to prove this phrase was added?

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      • Hi brother good question. Honestly I don’t know of any source on this one and I don’t know if section 132 was written by joseph or brigham or whoever. I just decided I needed to make the doctrine of keys a matter of prayer and I received a satisfactory answer for me.
        My understanding is that keys are inherent in the priesthood and we ought to continually seek more as they are some of the “best gifts” we are to seek. It is obvious the history of the coming forth of section 132 is shady at best, and the only way to really know is to get an answer from God on the matter. God bless us all in our search.

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  4. Tim, thank you for educating those who are searching. Obviously we are not “convincing” through words. Sorry to say, I am not a “Mormon”. I am God’s and only His. Mormon indeed is rolling his eyes at such a declaration. We are to Christ’s snd Christ only and assemble as he instructs, through repenting and retaining forgiveness and being baptized as a token and outward sign. Then He shall be one with us and we with Hiim.

    Of course you know this. No affiliation with a group without the Savior’s name will I belong, and without Him leading the way. To differentiate ourselves cannot include any other name but His.

    I do not conclude condescending attitude in any way. Those who may be fragile with yor message may conclude other things. Thanks for your efforts in your mission

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    • SFort: I am also a disciple of Jesus Christ. But I don’t mind being called a Mormon. Most people use that term when they ask me about my religion. It’s easy to say, says a lot and brings much to mind for conversation. “Oh, you’re from Utah, then…” is a common reply. “No, I’m from California, but I married a girl from Utah.” They say, “Oh, there’s lots of Mormons in Utah, aren’t there?”

      It also brings up discussion of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, the Book of Mormon, Polygamy and all kinds of things to talk about. It is especially interesting to point out the differences between Mormonism as a growing vibrant religious tradition and the LDS Church, which is taking the religion and turning it into something Joseph never intended. I endeavor to differentiate.

      We can then talk about the Restoration and what it was the Lord was trying to accomplish through Joseph – that we all come to know Christ without dependence upon a prophet. There’s no getting away from being called a Mormon by the thousands of folks who know me. It’s doesn’t bother me and leads to comparisons between Christianity and the Restoration movement.

      Talking about Mormonism gets people reading the Book of Mormon. That’s a big part of helping anyone understand the unique aspects of what I believe. Having grown up with the Book we still take it for granted everyone knows what’s in it. Not even close. I have a good man renting a room from me who knows lots of Mormons but has never read the Book of Mormon. That’s key.

      Blessings upon you my friend. We both seek to come unto Christ. I continue to be convinced the Book of Mormon is one of he best tools to help me find Him. Thus, I accept every opportunity to share something in common when people refer to me as a Mormon. Yes, I am nut I’m not a member of the LDS Church and wouldn’t you like to know why? It invariably sparks a conversation. Cheers.

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      • I do see why you do this. It is altruistic. Where has the name taken the latter-day church? I guess it has built up the sheep with pride and a great media outlet. We just don’t know how the Lord will do His work. We only have Babylon as an example of advertising a belief. I just don’t see long term benefits with this name. It is the name of the church Nephi, Ezekiel, and Isaiah spoke of.

        I believe in your honest and sincere intent, and I believe in it. God speed.

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  5. Tim,
    I just wanted to say thanks for another wonderful thought inspiring post. I was visiting with my elderly mother this evening and she mentioned this post….. she loves you Tim Malone….and mostly for the way you have helped so many to see the reality of our religion. It is a daunting mental exercise to actually question lifelong convictions that are intertwined with traditions of men. It is more difficult to do the older we get. My dear mother is wrestling and I can see it is painful…. it was for me as well but the rewards of an uncensored relationship with Jesus are amazing! Carry on Tim….your work is bearing fruit and it is most delicious.

    Daniel

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  6. Tim,

    Thank you for this post. It is exactly what I needed today.

    Adam

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  7. Dear Tim,

    I am a follower of Jesus and therefore I do not want to take upon me any name but his. I do not want to be called a Mormon. Of late I have turned to the bible .. for all my study. I have had friends of late leave the church because of the “history” they have found re: Joseph Smith who have talked with many former church historians who have left the church.. Not only because of the sin of polygamy, but many other things they have brought to my attention that is so disconcerting … any religion has skeletons in the closet. It is very hard to stay active in the church with all the evidence that is coming forth regarding the aspects of Joseph’s life. Though I find the BOM, D&C & Pearl of Great Price to have truth, I’m unsure as to their origin. It seems that at the time Joseph was born, there were also many others, Swedenborg, Lorber, etc who seemed to have the heavens opened to them. And yet I have found for myself, they also err in many of their supposed revelations or channeled information. All this religion stuff is very disconcerting to me and I have reached a point where I know many people from outside the LDS church who have received their calling and election who have received ordinances in heaven, who teach passionately about Jesus and meeting Father and Mother, going to all kinds of dimensions and universes, it is mind-boggling and yet incredibly wonderful. Their experiences seem real, they exude love and service. With this said, I then cannot hold onto an Aaronic restoration … I don’t want that … I want what to have like experiences of others who have membership in the Church of the Firstborn and yet are not LDS or never were LDS. I have come to a realization that all churches are preparatory churches. No one should idolize any prophet or preacher or pastor for if we cling to their words, and not seek God’s words, we have become idolators. The Jews worship Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Moses. The LDS worship general authorities … the Catholics worship the Pope. We cannot put our trust in any man, even DS, or we’ll miss what Hugh Nibley and the Egyptians called the “Sacred Bark” (the boat that carries you to heaven through the cosmos). Anyone familiar with Denver knows that his good friend John Hall teaches about the Egyptian Endowment and how it relates to the LDS endowment. However, I believe anyone, no matter what religion, who worships Jesus, and him only, becomes a member of the Church of the Firstborn. I’m done with Aaronic priesthood and the restoration. I’ve seen too many people from other cultures and religions have individual and magnificent relationship with Jesus. To say that they are deceived would be like me saying Denver is deceived.

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    • Tarzan, your thoughts are intriguing. Because a person just finds out that the history was anything but accurate does not necessarily mean a mass exodus. The condemnation of the church has been here since 1834-5. The Lord has worked somewhat with it as the men in the hierarchy would listen, but the power is latent for 170 years.

      The word of God is important. It inspires, drives, motivates men and women to do good and love their fellow men. The ordinances were changed and the everlasting covenant was broken. We are now in the time frame Nephi, Isaiah, Joel, and Ezekiel have written. It has been here for some time and now because you discovered it you are saddened?

      That is why we should be guided by the Spirit and the holy words of God. Whether or not you understand priesthood, ordinances, Heavenly Mother, who the Holy Ghost is or whether men preach your salvation has nothing to do with your relationship with God. He sees all those who seek Him earnestly through the maze. Whether one sheds unbelief now or 10 years ago or even a half century ago, reality has existed since 1835. Pieces have been disintegrating since that time.

      Now that the Lord is bringing things to light in preparation for a higher frequency upon the earth, it all becomes more visual. But the schism has been here a long time and the power was subdued and we accepted it. Now we do not. God is in the details of our lives and we shut the door by not letting Him in by our reliance on man, our unbelief and lack of faith. When we shed those things, our lives become enriched.

      Do not look for events to shore up your faith. Start now with your pleas of partaking in His renewal. The Lord is very interested in all His children all over the world. Though it is exciting to look for a choice seer among the tribe of Lehi, or look toward the Davidic Servant, charting the tetrad, or to look for Joseph Smith to return, we must not allow waiting for these events to slow down the process toward the everlasting arms of His love. Events do not usher in nor cause faith to subside based on the event. The FAITH starts the process and strengthens your resolve. The other things are just the natural events that have to transpire through natural means, prophecy and already known events. More holy writ awaits, and servants will be on schedule.

      We must be redeemed. Take care in your journey. You are loved.

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  8. So now that Denver has suggested that an official “Recorder” be voted on to record rebaptisms, it is feels that a church is beginning to form. Since I am done with Aaronic restoration, and want no part of a restoration church, and since I am waiting for someone with Power who does miracles and prophesies, I’m wondering what the majority of you will be doing?

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  9. This is not my blog and I feel to make an apology for providing critique when not solicited.
    I am glad for the many who have found the Lord in paths that are as real to them as many paths have been over the ages of time to many diverse courses. In sharing here I find no fault in how my brothers and sisters have found new ways, meaningful ways, to worship The Father and His Son Jesus Christ.
    The worth of a soul is so very great to the Lord.
    This work that was accelerated by the Prophet Joseph Smith was never singular. Simultaneously with the Prophet the Lord was, and continues to work through righteous individuals — those who seek the Lord but find no fault in others.
    I find it fascinating that so many say that the Lord is here, or He is there, but He is not in this institution or in that person(s). He is only to be found in what “I” am doing and not in what others are preaching.
    Let me get to the point. I wonder why the Prophet Joseph Smith, who still holds the Keys to the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times in and through Eternity, when he appeared post-martyrdom, didn’t state that the course being followed is in apostasy to that which the Lord restored through him. Surely he would care to correct.
    I wonder why, when the Lord appeared to Elder Hinckley (President Hinckley), there wasn’t a chastisement and a rebuke that he (Hinckley) was leading an apostate group steadily down the adversary’s path. Surely the Lord, in person, would not allow a person sincerely seeking the Lord’s will to go without course correction.
    And: How is it that the thousand upon thousand baptisms occurring throughout the world are wrong and apostate (without authority) but the small group here has the monopoly on “authorized baptisms”.
    I am not trying to denigrate the teachings of Tim Malone or Denver Snuffer or anyone else in this group — only a ponderer advocating pause.
    If the adversary fooled even the Prophet Joseph Smith into thinking that he (Son of the Morning) was an emissary of Heavenly Messengers and Messages; only to be exposed by mighty Michael, the Archangel — how secure are we in stating the the Lord is here, no…the Lord is there, no …the Lord will do this and He will do that — but our group alone has the “key” of understanding His revelations.
    The paths of error and revolt are sometimes luminous and astral — just ask any of the hosts of heaven whom followed the “chosen path surely”.
    May the Lord be Merciful to each of us as we seek our paths securely.

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