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    Understanding the True
    Origins of Mormonism

    The Incredible Story of a Race of Celestial Beings
    that once Came to the Earth...

    by Clare Gregory

    Chapter 23
    Mount of Transfiguration

      "For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount." (2 Peter 1:16-18.)

      "And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him. Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, “this in my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear year him. And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. And Jesus came and touched them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid. And when they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no man, save Jesus only.” (Matt 17:1-2,5)

    Joseph Smith taught that the purpose of the Mount of Transfiguration was for holy men of the past to appear and give “priesthood keys” to Jesus Christ. If Joseph Smith is correct, then my entire premise is flawed about the Nephilim angels, and I’m in error. The Mormons are right. The priesthood authority is transferred by angles and is external to the truth.

    But is this true? Can we really see that teaching clearly from these verses? If true, why does it not say he was ordained with keys? Rather, it says: “…there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him”. And what is the symbol of the tabernacles Peter suggests? One for Moses, one for Elias, and one for Jesus? A tabernacle is a place where God dwells. It is a covering. What is the scriptural context? Let’s look. Jesus is shining in light, brilliant in glory. Peter, being of Hebrew heritage and being trained in the historical traditions about God and Moses, what will he think? Will he not conclude that the glory of God and his presence belongs in a “tabernacle”? But does Peter understand? No. He has not received the baptism of the Holy Spirit recorded in Act 2:1-4, and he assumes like all of ancient Israel that the physical temple or tabernacle was to be the literal house of God, and not our human bodies. Thus, as he sees the glory of God, he suggests they make three tabernacles to house this glory. It is important to note the passage only teaches that only Jesus was full of light and glory. It does not mention Moses or Elijah being touched with the glory of God. They had not even been resurrected yet. But Peter still asks for three tabernacles? Why? Peter doesn’t understand. Moses and Elijah are spirits from the dead, and he assumes they are part Deity to be respected as well as Jesus. Peter assumes they are angels with God’s authority and power, just like the Mormons believe. But what happens? The moment this incorrect thought enters Peters mind, and he speaks, a bright cloud overshadowed Peter, James, and John, and God’s voice said: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear him.” And it frightened them, for it was sudden, and took Peter’s words right out of his mouth. God was teaching them a lesson. God did not want three tabernacles as Peter erroneously suggested, for God is in Jesus Christ, His Son, and we are to hear him. The bright cloud covered the disciples, symbolic of God’s presence resting on them as individuals. The physical house of the tabernacle was to change with the New Covenant. The temple is our bodies. The men fell on their faces in shock. But then Jesus touched them, and said, “Be not afraid.” And when they looked up, they saw only Jesus, whom they are instructed by God “to hear”. It very clear who, and only who, these disciples were to listen to and believe in, and that is Jesus Christ. God taught them about the authority of angels and prophets verses the authority of Jesus Christ. Understanding the fact that Moses and Elijah were not illuminated makes the passage much clearer. Jesus is God’s Son. That puts him above angels and prophets, and we are to “hear him”. For if we do, the power of God will rest upon us, and our bodies will become the tabernacle of God.

    Although at the time the disciples did not understand the symbolism about the birth process, they did understand the authority of Jesus Christ contrasted to Moses and Elijah, and thus we see in the next verse the question invoked by the experience:

      “And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead. And his disciples asked him, saying, Why then say the scribes that Elias [Elijah] must first come?” (Matt 17:9-10.)

    The disciples were confused by the vision, seeing dramatically that Jesus had authority over Moses and Elijah in glory and power, with the voice of God commanding them to listen to Jesus. But their minds went back to their traditions. If Jesus is the person we are to hear, then why do the scribes say Elijah must come? Are we not suppose to learn something from Elijah? They did not really understand that Jesus is God.

      “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias [Elijah] truly shall first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, that Elias [Elijah] is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them. Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.” (Matt 17:11-13.)

    This scripture is a key verse in the Bible, for it answers the question in Malachi 4:6 about the return of Elijah the prophet:

      “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” (Malachi 4:5-6)

    Unlike Mormonism, which teaches that Elijah appeared to Joseph Smith in 1836 to restore priesthood keys, Jesus clearly teaches that John the Baptist fulfilled this prophecy and “restored all things”. And what did John the Baptist restore? The keys of truth regarding the born again process. He came preaching both the baptism of water and fire, explaining that self-discipline was for water repentance that man could perform, and that the Holy Spirit was from God, which power would be brought to the world by Jesus Christ:

      “John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptized you with water; but one mightier than I cometh, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire” (Luke 3:16.)

    Thus, John taught the elementary principles of Christ, which is the foundation of all spiritual growth and eternal life, restoring to Israel the truths necessary to establish the Kingdom of God in the hearts of men and women. And thus, the kingdom is born of the heart:

      “And he shall turn the hearts of fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to the fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” (Malachi 4:5-6)

    As we repent and receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost and begin sharing these truth to others, we all become part of the spiritual family of Jesus Christ. If not so, then Jesus would come and not redeem anyone, for all would be smitten with the curse of the fall, being unredeemed. By turning to God through Christ and the new birth, we become brothers, sisters, and mothers, each playing a unique role at different times depending on the will of God.

      “For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.” (Mark 3:35)

    Thus, John restored the principles of the Kingdom of God that would enable a spiritual family to be begotten by the power of Jesus Christ.

      “But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias [Greek form of Elijah], to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:13-17.)

    This teaching came from an angel of God, announcing the fulfillment of Malachi 4:6 in John the Baptist. The angel clarifies the meaning of the terminology of turning the “hearts of the children to the fathers” by teaching: “…to turn…the disobedient to the wisdom of the just…” Thus, “disobedient children” will be turned to their spiritual fathers or the “wisdom of the just”. They will turn to those mature Christians who have gone through the steps Peter outlines in obtaining faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity. (2 Peter 1:4-9)

    It is extremely clear in the New Testament that the fulfillment of Malachi’s prophecy of Elijah is John the Baptist. I suggest we put our confidence in the Biblical Word of angels and Jesus Christ Himself and not in the false interpretation of Nephilim counterfeits that appeared to Joseph Smith. Finally, let us comment briefly about Elijah the prophet and John to end this topic on a clear note. John the Baptist was the greatest prophet who ever lived, according to Jesus, for he prepared the way for the Son of man. God needed to prepare Israel to understand and recognize the importance of John the Baptist’s ministry that they might receive Jesus as Lord and God. So God tells Israel he will send Elijah. But Israel misunderstood the symbolism of Elijah being taken into heaven in a chariot of fire, assuming that God would physically bring Elijah back to earth to do his work. The chariot of fire was SYMBOLIC of the baptism of fire of Jesus Christ that takes us to heaven, which John the Baptist taught. Israel also missed the symbolism of Elijah’s parting of the Jordan river which proceeded his ascent into heaven by fire, which represents water repentance that John also taught that is to proceed the baptism of fire. Therefore, we see many types and shadows between the Elijah’s and John’s ministries, both pointing to the born-again process. We see John is sent to the wilderness, and Elijah also is sent to the wilderness. John eats locusts and wild food. Elijah is feed by ravens. The symbolism? As we go through our repentance and birth process, we too must pass through a desolate land of sorrow and struggle to find the light. But God feeds us. It is important to note, therefore, the both John and Elijah ate FOOD that was not touched or defiled by human hands. It was raw from nature. Thus, we must read the Word and have God feed us directly by His Holy Spirit. We see the battle with the prophets of Baal, representing the confrontation we all face with false prophets and demons who lie to us. And like John the Baptist, Elijah teaches us the method to handle these false characters. Baptism by water and fire. He took a animal sacrifice and drenched it in water, then asked God to burn it with fire. This again is symbolic of baptism of water and fire, sacrificing our pride on the altar of God. Elijah then killed all the false prophets, cleansing Israel of sin. He then escapes to the desert, and learns that God is not in the wind, the earthquake, or the fire. God is the “still small voice”. (1 Kings 19:11-12.) And that still, small voice dwells in our temple. We find this voice in the midst of our earthquakes and whirlwinds of life, while in solitude and meditation in the spiritual mountains of our lives. Elijah’s heart was turned to God.

    The symbolism is very clear, and those looking for Elijah the prophet will see the parallels in John’s ministry turning the hearts of the fathers to children, and children to the fathers through the born-again process.

    Who do we believe? Do we believe in angels of glory appearing to Joseph Smith? Or do we beleive the glory of Jesus who was transfigured before both Elijah and Moses who were only dull SPIRITS and NOT IN GLORY? If we are to believe Joseph Smith, we will believe that “angels of glory” give keys of authority to God on the Mount. But this is a most absurd notion to consider. It causes the mind to blink and stare in darkness. The Bible teaches Jesus is God, the Almighty One! Then Mormonism teaches that angels of a lesser order must transfer authority to the Almighty One? And this based on Matt 17:1-5 in which nothing of the sort is clearly taught? I don’t think so. The Bible is clear. We see God teaching that we worship and trust Jesus Christ alone. The voice of the Father commanded: “hear Him”, NOT Moses and Elijah. They were “talking” or “communicating” on the Mount with WORDS, not ordaining Jesus. The Message? What words do we believe? The Words of Christ. And yet, the Mormons twist the gospel into a different message entirely, teaching that we should listen to and trust resurrected angels and their priesthood. Such unbiblical priesthood concepts can only come from an angel who is interested in having God’s authority, but who does not have it— from Lucifer, the light bearer.

    Day Star Rises In Our Hearts

    Thus we see from the actual words and experience recorded in Matthew 17:1-5, God was tutoring his disciples to understand the born again process. It comes of the heart, and Peter understood this clearly after the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, and so did the rest of the Church. They understood the reproof the brethren received on the Mount, and that Jesus is the voice we hear in our hearts—our bodies being the tabernacle of God. For this reason, right after sharing his testimony of seeing the glory of God on the Mount, Peter explains we have a even a more sure word of prophecy than just seeing Jesus or even hearing the audible voice of God:

      “And this voice of heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, unto the day dawn, and the day star ARISE IN YOUR HEARTS” (2 Peter 1:18-19).

    What is Peter talking about? It is the born again process. We all are born with a conscience. It is like a light shining in a dark place—a star at night. We are tempted and buffeted by the flesh and pride, which is the darkness. Our conscience is defiled by the world. It shines and tells us when we lie against what we believe is true. There are a billion stars at night representing the billions of people on earth. Therefore, we must take heed to follow that light in us, for that leads us being born of God by the Word of Christ. How can we find truth if we are hypocrites and refuse be true to our own beliefs, even if they are wrong? Thus, we must be honest with ourselves and obey what we really think is true, or we can never find the light of day. The “day dawn” and the “day star” that arises in our hearts is a much brighter light than our conscience! We see this light when we are born again and see Christ in us by the baptism of the Holy Spirit. When the light of God enters our spirit and we see it coming up over the horizon, it is as beautiful and glorious as the physical sun rising in the east. And when we see the “arc of light” for the first time cracking the earthly plane, we have then received the more sure word of prophecy, for we have seen Jesus Christ in us, and we have even a MORE SURE confirmation of our salvation. We receive the “spirit of prophecy”, in which this light guides our future path. We may not be told the future. It doesn’t mean we can “prophecy” with words in advance, but our life becomes a prophecy unfolding daily. We trust this light, and if it says turn right, then we turn right in faith, and soon, we see the future unfold according to the will of God. Then we know we heeded the voice of God. . We know God holds the future in his hands, and we trust it to his care alone. Thus, there are three evidences that give us confidence and assurance of our salvation outlined by Peter:

    • 1) The character of God in us—we have found charity. Our calling and election is sure.

    • 2) The actual word and glory of God to the prophets experienced in the flesh. Jesus with Moses and Elijah on the Mount. His resurrection and appearing to 500 people. The Bible is true based on that sure evidence and testimony.

    • 3) The Light of God shining in our hearts. We are born of God. We receive the more sure word of prophecy. We trust God implicitly with the future, for we see the Day Star, and we trust that light will direct our future path. We are even more sure we will enter the kingdom of God, as each day, God’s will unfolds clearly before our eyes!

    These principles were clearly understood by Peter and communicated succinctly to the early Christians. It was not a mystery, but commonly held beliefs. They understood what to look for in their experience with Christ to get on the sure path to eternal life. And what does Joseph Smith do? He has a dramatic spiritual experiences that superimposes false principles over the true meaning of the Word of God. Thus Peter concludes:

      "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of who the truth shall be evil spoken of.” (2 Peter 1:20-21;2:1)

    Now I ask the reader, after reading Joseph Smith’s teaching compared to what Peter actually wrote, was Joseph Smith truly writing under the same Holy Spirit that inspired the Bible? Or did Joseph Smith come to the people with private experiences to explain the word of God? How many other Christians or Mormons can stand up and say the EXACT SAME teachings of Joseph Smith has occurred to them? Who are they? Now is this not a private understanding of the Bible? Who else can testify they have heard the voice of God say: “Son, thou shalt be exalted.”? What does this tell us about Joseph Smith according to the words of Peter? Thank God for Peter. He pegs Joseph Smith as a false prophet like a bull-eye sharp shooter, and I simply can not see how he can escape the judgement of God.

    And why do Mormons follow Joseph Smith’s “pernicious ways”? Why do they believe the doctrine of becoming gods and goddesses, the perversion of grace, the false purpose of life, the occult temple ordinances, and the false priesthood? Peter says it succinctly: “And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of who the truth shall be evil spoken of.” The Mormon people believe the lies because they believe the Bible is corrupted. The Bible is evil spoken of. They have been instructed that it does not contain the Word of life unto salvation, but they need more to be saved. Thus, not only did Joseph Smith badmouth the Bible, but HE actually CHANGED IT TO FIT HIS PRIVATE EXPERIENCES!

    Now, I have brought the issue to the table. Do we believe Peter or Joseph Smith? Who was the true apostle of Jesus. Peter said we are not to use our private experiences to interpret the Bible. It is what false prophets do. Therefore, I ask the reader to judge my writings verses Joseph Smith’s. Did Joseph Smith take the time to study the Bible in context and believe it as it is written? Or did he take sentences and thoughts from the Bible to justify his personal experience? Where does Peter talk about having God say: “Son, thou shalt be exalted?” Where does Peter talk about the second comforted being a personal visit of Jesus? I don’t see it anywhere but in the private experience of Joseph Smith.

    And thus Joseph Smith wrongly concludes from his own warped experience:

      “John 14:23: The appearing of the Father and the Son, in that verse, is a personal appearance; and the idea that the Father and Son dwell in a person’s heart is an old sectarian notion, and is false.” (D&C 130:3)

    But read what John wrote:

      “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (John 14:23.)

    Is an “abode” something that means coming and going like Joseph Smith experienced and believed? For to have a personal appearance of the Father and Son would require them to stay briefly and then leave. The visit can only occur to one person at a time, and God’s body can only be at one place at a time. Oh! When a person even thinks of the logic of Joseph Smith, it causes the mind to do cartwheels to close the logic to comprehend and believe it. Joseph Smith could not have really thought deeply through what his doctrines imply. An abode is a HOME. It is a dwelling place for Deity. It is our hearts, just as the Christian world has believed since the time John wrote his gospel! It is Joseph Smith that has brought in “damnable heresies” (2 Peter 2:1) that deny the truths taught in the Bible. It is clear from this one interpretation of John 14:23, that Joseph Smith was writing from his feelings and experience, and not the Holy Spirit of Truth. For the Truthful mind will clearly teach that it is impossible for God and Jesus to be zipping around the galaxies making physical appearances to the believers in God. The concept truly limits the number of believers in Christ to a finite number constrained by time and space. Suppose a billion people in the world repented and had their calling and election sure. How can God visit a billion people at the same time? He CAN NOT! If he spent even thirty minutes chatting with each believer, it would take 10,016 years to visit a billion people to provide salvation according to Joseph Smith’s pattern. The very doctrine of Mormonism limits the possibilities of God. God could not keep Joseph Smith’s promise to Israel, even if the world obeyed. Is that Justice? To provide a plan of salvation that can not possibly be implemented for everyone? No. It is tied to the flesh and earthly principles and is therefore false.

    Joseph Smith believed in the Nephilim and the feelings in his heart, just like all Mormons stand on the false testimony process explained in chapter 5 and in Trixie’s dream in chapter 17. Thus, Peter begins appropriately with faith and knowledge in 2 Peter Chapter 1:1-2, and not feelings. If we are truly honest, our minds will agree with the “sectarian notion”. God the Father is a Spirit. His essence is EVERWHERE at the same time. And that is the truth of the Bible, uncontaminated by the hand of Joseph Smith.

      “God is Spirit: and they that worship him must worship in spirit and truth”. (John 4:23)

    The truth according to the Bible is that God dwells in the tabernacle of our bodies, in Christ’s body, in the Father’s body, and in all those who God has “called and elected” to live in to do His will.

    This page was first created on 23 January 1999
    Last Updated on 16 April 1999
    Created and Maintained by The New Covenant Assemblies of Yahweh
    Not all the views expressed in this book are necessarily those of NCAY