My name is Jared Lee Davis, and I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Some people call us Mormons. I read an article entitled, "What the Bible Teaches About Marriage in the Next Life", and became a little alarmed when I read some obvious mis-information that doesn't do justice to our beliefs. Indeed I don't know who told the Author Mr Christopher C. Warren the information he wrote as fact so matter of factly but it is decidedly erroneous.
First of all before I address the statement I intended to target, I have a few other views that I would like to correct, that might help to clean up Christopher's confused thoughts on what we believe and why we believe it.
On the issue of Authority, which was written about in the second paragraph under question 2, Authority and Membership in the LDS Church have about as much to do with each other, as for lack of a better comparison, being in the Army, and having a "security clearence". (Like for instance somebody that has a "license" to look at "top secret" information.) A person can be in the Army, and have a "top secret clearance", but being in the Army is not the deciding factor.
#1 The person must be a relatively good person, with a clean record, or they won't even look at you further as a candidate for it. Secondly, you are required to know and understand about security issues, ie. leaks in information, effects and additionally consequences if you should accidentally or purposefully leak information out to people. You have to know what information spies could use to glean information from you. If you were ignorant of all these things, you could potentially hurt, and injure many things.
In the same way that the army and security clearance are two separate entities, the LDS Church and having the authority to "Marry" for time and Eternity two people, are totally separate. Rather then the membership that is important, it is the understanding of the covenants that you are to make with the Lord that is important. Indeed a person has a need to understand the implications of marriage and the promises contained with-in.
The Church, (When I say the Church I mean The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) is nothing but a housing of all the beliefs and truths of God and his Gospel. (I have heard that from Greek, Gospel could be translated directly into the English Language as being "The Good News of God"). The God I know will never lie, nor contradict himself. Those "lies" or "contradictions" that people think they find are just misconceptions due in almost all cases to a uneven perspective. What I mean is God has a perfect Vantage point, and therefore can understand all things. On the Contrary we men (and women of course) don't, and cant understand most things perfectly.
Along with that thought, I believe as I am sure you will too, that truth is truth, and if something is one way, ie. if something is black...then it is not gray...it is black. I know that sounded stupid but it's very interesting how often you will see people who obviously inter-mesh being "accepting to others beliefs" with "accepting 2 truths" and vice versa; people who inter-mesh being "obstinate" with "someone who believes that there is only 1 truth".
And thus it is with our plight (ours refering to my "Church" of course). We are unmoveable in our belief that there is only one truth, and through modern revelation coming down from Jesus Christ and Heavenly father THROUGH and not BY his Servants we can recieve this Truth. And through Heavenly Father's and Jesus Christ's Holy Ghost we can, if we truly desire, know of the so called "truths" divine nature. If we pray with sincere desire, he (god) will manifest the truth of it (whatever you want to know) to you, by the Power of the Holy Ghost. And by the Power of the Holy Ghost Ye may know the Truth of All Things. (Moroni 10: 4-5) *not exact quote but close*
That is and has been our claim since our "Church's" legal organization on April 6, over two hundred years ago. That God still talks to his people, and although his leaders, ie those people I know to be prophets and apostles are just men, and they make mistakes, God is perfect and will always lead us and them in the right direction. Some people get the idea that we "revere" Joseph Smith almost like deity. There is not to much that can be farther from the truth. Joseph Smith was a man. He was a man with a calling from God. And he performed that calling to the best of his ability because he loved God. In short we believe that men are fallible NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE including Joseph Smith. Indeed we look at Joseph Smith much like other Christians look at Moses. He was a Prophet, and he performed mirracles. But it was God who did the mirracles and not Joseph. Without God Joseph would have been nothing, and he knew that.
This brings me to the last and most important reason I wrote this email. That is to correct the statement of Christophers afore mentioned Question # 2 Paragraph # 2, where it says, "In short, all hangs on Joseph Smith.", as refering to the Authority given to Holy Priesthood Sealers, (a sealer is what we call the person who "Seals" a couple for time and all eternity together).
All does not hang on Joseph Smith. Indeed if Joseph Smith had not been up to doing the thing required of him, to prepare the way for the truth to be restored on the Earth once again after the dark apostacy, God would have found somebody else to do it. Make no mistake about it. God doesn't fail. It would have happened regardless of whether or not Joseph Smith ever existed.
However we do respect him for the Prophet of the Lord which he was, and the terrible hardships that he endured in order to do what the Lord asked of him. He was a very good man, and I should like to shake his hand when I get up there, if I get up there to him. But he is not God, and he is not the "hanger" upon which our "truth" hangs. I do not however intend that you will believe what I say just because I took the time to write this. At the same time though, I do sincerely yearn that if you have a desire, even a small one, to learn whether what I say is true or NOT that you pray to God, alone, and ask him about this. I know he will answer you, because he has answered me numerous times. Have a nice day who ever reads this. I will be thinking about you.
Jared Lee Davis....my credentials?? I am just a 23 year old boy, about to get married in the Temple to one of the most beautiful women in the world. Her name is Jennifer Argueta, and she is currently serving a mission for The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Fresno, California area. Thankyou for your time. I really appreciate it.