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Structured in other Christian demoninations?


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#1 girlygirl

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 11:59 AM

A few questions if anyone could give me some insight on them that would be great- 1. How do other Churches pay for themselves? We have tithing, what do they implement? Just wondering how they run their churches and pay for them. 2. Are mormons the only ones who crack down on standards? I feel like we have rules that are very black and white- ei. word of wisdom- where as other churches seem to have 'ideals' of what you should live up to? 3. How come other churches can congregate together? It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds. I am not trying to disrespect any other churches these are genuine questions I am really interested in and that I feel I haven't been able to get solid answers on.

#2 prisonchaplain

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 12:22 PM

A few questions if anyone could give me some insight on them that would be great-

1. How do other Churches pay for themselves? We have tithing, what do they implement? Just wondering how they run their churches and pay for them.


All Christian churches that I know of take up "tithes and offerings." The percentage of giving is highest amongst LDS, but we all run this way.

2. Are mormons the only ones who crack down on standards? I feel like we have rules that are very black and white- ei. word of wisdom- where as other churches seem to have 'ideals' of what you should live up to?


Churches vary in their social standards. Some of the Holiness churches would be shocked at the social dances that take place in LDS churches, and the amount of makeup your women are allowed to wear. Many churches observe abstinence from alcohol and tobacco, and most continue to prohibit premarital sex, as well as adultery. Y'all stand alone in prohibiting tea and coffee, though.

3. How come other churches can congregate together? It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds.


Most Christian churches share a belief in who God is (Holy Trinity), what the scriptures are (Holy Bible), and who the Believers are (all who believe in Jesus and confess their sins). LDS do not believe in the Trinity, have added scriptures, and believe some of the restored doctrines are necessary for full gospel worship of the Christ. Thus, there is indeed a divide that keeps us from full fellowship.

I am not trying to disrespect any other churches these are genuine questions I am really interested in and that I feel I haven't been able to get solid answers on.


I hope these help. :)

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -- Lord Acton


#3 girlygirl

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 12:53 PM

Thanks very much for your response! I have gone to other churches before to visit and volunteered at a United Church recently and had some thoughts reeling through my head since then. I guess just one more question with my point 2- do any churches crack down on rules as much as mormons though? Because we have to be worthy to go to the temple and repent and confess before we go to the temple I really feel like this separates us from other denominations. Are some churches really cut and dry like we are? And if they are- must they confess just like we do? It seems without the temple standard you could do alot of things pretty undetected thus not really obeying what is commanded of you?? Im asking this because it seems to me as people have spoken to me the 'rules' are a bit fuzzy and from what I gather most religions preach it is between you and God to decern what is right and wrong and to repent. Is there even a repentance process in other churches? (Besides Catholic confessions)

#4 prisonchaplain

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 01:00 PM

You are correct that LDS standards are more heavily monitored. There is built in accountability. In most Protestant churches, the standards are taught, but it is indeed up to the individual to comply. Hypocrisy is very possible. However, I would hazzard to guess that even in LDS circles, people can learn to do and say what they need to, if they want to enjoy the temple and their pet sins too. People cannot possibly catch everything. Ultimately, we will not sincerely obey God unless we truly believe that God sees what is done in secret. Also, I would guess that churches in many parts of the world are more community-oriented than those in the West--especially in the U.S. We have "rugged individualism" built strongly into our culture. Thus, we do not easily accept our spiritual leaders "prying" into our personal lives. This is not right, but it is our natural inclination.

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -- Lord Acton


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Posted 10 August 2011 - 01:11 PM

I think the difference in accountability comes in part from our view of salvation. In a "grace only" church, the members are assumed to be saved in many cases regardless of future failings. They may have high standards or ideals, but if you fall short it matters little if they believe in an easy grace that assigns no earthly consequences to sin after accepting the Lord. LDS doctrine is that we are saved by grace after all we can do - meaning effort in living up to the standards is expected. When we enter the Lord's house (the temple) we are expected to do so only if we are truly trying to follow the Lord (keeping the commandments being a big part of that). When men perform priesthood ordinances they do so in the name of the Lord, so we hope that they are making sincere efforts to follow him throughout the week when they invoke His name to bless someone with healing. My other thought is that "cracking down" is to be done in a spirit of love and compassion for the one who is falling short. We want them to have the blessings found from keeping the commandments.

#6 girlygirl

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 01:19 PM

Are the tithing and offerings heavily emphasized? I would feel it is human nature to just not pay anything if it was seen as more optional... I just feel like the LDS church is so black and white mainly because of the 'rules' to get into the temple, and I find it really interesting and great that people from other faiths can live up to what is expected of them without a temple goal.

#7 prisonchaplain

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 01:58 PM

I think the difference in accountability comes in part from our view of salvation. In a "grace only" church, the members are assumed to be saved in many cases regardless of future failings. They may have high standards or ideals, but if you fall short it matters little if they believe in an easy grace that assigns no earthly consequences to sin after accepting the Lord.

LDS doctrine is that we are saved by grace after all we can do - meaning effort in living up to the standards is expected. When we enter the Lord's house (the temple) we are expected to do so only if we are truly trying to follow the Lord (keeping the commandments being a big part of that). When men perform priesthood ordinances they do so in the name of the Lord, so we hope that they are making sincere efforts to follow him throughout the week when they invoke His name to bless someone with healing. My other thought is that "cracking down" is to be done in a spirit of love and compassion for the one who is falling short. We want them to have the blessings found from keeping the commandments.


I won't deny that some self-delude, by embracing "cheap grace" or "easy grace." However, even churches that teach "once saved always saved" would say that we demonstrate our salvation by righteous living. If you are living for the Devil, then I have to wonder if you were ever really saved? Also, many of our churches (including mine) do teach that salvation can be lost--either by willful rebellion, by on-going neglect, or by falling into unrepentant sin.

It is true that sin can be forgiven. However, true repentance includes a "turning away from." So, the idea that God can be gamed, by continually repenteing and then repeating the sin, is foolishness. It's not the true teaching of any "grace alone" church.

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -- Lord Acton


#8 prisonchaplain

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 02:03 PM

Are the tithing and offerings heavily emphasized? I would feel it is human nature to just not pay anything if it was seen as more optional...

I just feel like the LDS church is so black and white mainly because of the 'rules' to get into the temple, and I find it really interesting and great that people from other faiths can live up to what is expected of them without a temple goal.


Tithing and offerings are highest in Pentecostal and Baptist churches. We do emphasize it more. However, there are no interviews, or other accountablity measures. We just teach on it more.

Part of what mitigates my own experience is that typically only about 40% of those who attend Assemblies of God churches are members. The rest are "adherents." We do not "push" membership, though we welcome new ones happily. Often, when people actually join our churches they are taught that members are expected to tithe and support the work. So, while about 50% of our adherents tithe, I would guess most members do.

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -- Lord Acton


#9 madeleine1

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Posted 12 August 2011 - 09:08 PM

A few questions if anyone could give me some insight on them that would be great-

1. How do other Churches pay for themselves? We have tithing, what do they implement? Just wondering how they run their churches and pay for them.

2. Are mormons the only ones who crack down on standards? I feel like we have rules that are very black and white- ei. word of wisdom- where as other churches seem to have 'ideals' of what you should live up to?

3. How come other churches can congregate together? It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds.

I am not trying to disrespect any other churches these are genuine questions I am really interested in and that I feel I haven't been able to get solid answers on.


Hello,

Tithing is Biblical and as far as I know, all Christians have a method of offerings that go towards the functioning of a church.

All Christians are taught to adhere to the Ten Commandments. Most Christian churches teach people to examine their own lives. A Priest advised me once to spend some time each evening in an examination of the day. Look for where I saw God present in my life, the times and places where I lived my Christian faith, and the other times that could use some improvement. He would never ask specific questions as LDS are asked. That is between myself and God, and the time spent in examination of conscience is towards that relationship.

I'm not sure what you mean by congregate together. My own faith, being Catholic, I can attend any parish I like within my diocese. Most people land in one parish and become a part of that Christian community. Volunteering for various ministries, social activities, faith based groups, Bible study, etc. Our diocese has various times where Catholics from all over come together. And there are times and places where Catholics gather from all over the world. One such day is coming up very soon, World Youth Day, which is in Madrid this time. Our teachings are such that, whenever a group of Catholics are together to celebrate Mass, the whole church is with them. Along with this, we adhere to a liturgical calendar, which means, all Catholics throughout the world are doing the same things on the same days. So in this sense, our communion with each other is world wide.

Hope that helps.

Peace.

#10 Jason_J

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Posted 23 August 2011 - 07:38 PM

I'm not sure what you mean by congregate together. My own faith, being Catholic, I can attend any parish I like within my diocese. Most people land in one parish and become a part of that Christian community. Volunteering for various ministries, social activities, faith based groups, Bible study, etc. Our diocese has various times where Catholics from all over come together. And there are times and places where Catholics gather from all over the world. One such day is coming up very soon, World Youth Day, which is in Madrid this time. Our teachings are such that, whenever a group of Catholics are together to celebrate Mass, the whole church is with them. Along with this, we adhere to a liturgical calendar, which means, all Catholics throughout the world are doing the same things on the same days. So in this sense, our communion with each other is world wide.

Hope that helps.

Peace.



This isn't what she was talking about though. She was asking about why it seems that some traditional Christians (certain Protestants in this case) seem to be able to just go to any church of any denomination. At least, that's the only interpretation of "It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds." that makes sense.

#11 madeleine1

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 08:49 AM

This isn't what she was talking about though. She was asking about why it seems that some traditional Christians (certain Protestants in this case) seem to be able to just go to any church of any denomination. At least, that's the only interpretation of "It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds." that makes sense.


OH, I see now, thanks.

People are choosing between Christian churches, the same as I choose between a parish. LDS (and a lot of Catholics too) view it as swapping between denominations, but that isn't what is going on.

People have different ways of understanding the word "Church". There are many people who view all of Christianity as One Church, which is the proper Catholic view. (Though Catholic belief Christ's Church subsists in the Catholic Church and all Christians by a valid baptism belong to this One Church). People who consider themselves non-denominational or interdenominational, will look for a Christian Church where they feel they can serve God, are comfortable with the pastor, what is being taught doctrinally and if they fit socially. (I would make a tentative venture to guess this is what Joseph Smith was in the process of doing when he prayed about what church to join.)

I think this link might help:

Find a Church - How to Find a Church

Peace.

Edited by madeleine1, 26 August 2011 - 08:57 AM.


#12 Eowyn

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 09:09 AM

It is true that sin can be forgiven. However, true repentance includes a "turning away from." So, the idea that God can be gamed, by continually repenteing and then repeating the sin, is foolishness. It's not the true teaching of any "grace alone" church.


This is what has always made me feel like we actually agree on this point, it's just that the semantics are different. I live in a heavily-LDS-populated area. This week I was driving behind a van whose bumper sticker said, "If you can earn it, why did He die?" I'm sure it was directed at Mormons. I wanted to tell him, we can't earn it, and we have never believed that we can. But we do adhere to His charge to follow Him, and keep His commandments. Not because we can earn it, but because since we have accepted Him as our Savior, we seek to do as He taught.

Maybe this is another topic altogether, but there is a continuum of reasons to obey, ranging from fear of punishment to love of our God and Savior. I hope that most Latter-day Saints aren't keeping the commandments just to be able to hold a temple recommend, but that worthiness to enter the temple is a side effect of showing our love and devotion by obedience to Jesus and Heavenly Father.

#13 Maureen

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 09:44 AM

This isn't what she was talking about though. She was asking about why it seems that some traditional Christians (certain Protestants in this case) seem to be able to just go to any church of any denomination. At least, that's the only interpretation of "It seems like my christian friends all can swap between each church however not the lds." that makes sense.


Who cares?! Her post was still very informative.

M.

Edited by Maureen, 26 August 2011 - 09:46 AM.

I'd rather be a could-be if I cannot be an are; because a could-be is a maybe who - is reaching for a star. I'd rather be a has-been than a might-have-been, by far; for a might have-been has never been, but a has was once an are. - Milton Berle

Sound, balanced teaching is a must. Our default should be to partake. Our default should be to live in joy, not condemnation. Our default should be to love, not to correct, to encourage, not to criticize. (Quote from prisonchaplain)

#14 Dravin

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 10:32 AM

Who cares?! Her post was still very informative.

M.


He was trying to help her understand what the OP was asking. I imagine the OP cares to have their questions understood correctly, and apparently Madeleine cared enough to know what the OP was asking to appreciate having it clarified for her.
Hindsight is all well and good... until you trip.

#15 Maureen

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 11:25 AM

He was trying to help her understand what the OP was asking. I imagine the OP cares to have their questions understood correctly, and apparently Madeleine cared enough to know what the OP was asking to appreciate having it clarified for her.


I understand that, but additional information never hurts. And I'm sure the OP is smart enough that if she is unsure of something, all she has to do is ask. I'm just saying that I really appreciated the information Madeleine gave in her post. :)

M.
I'd rather be a could-be if I cannot be an are; because a could-be is a maybe who - is reaching for a star. I'd rather be a has-been than a might-have-been, by far; for a might have-been has never been, but a has was once an are. - Milton Berle

Sound, balanced teaching is a must. Our default should be to partake. Our default should be to live in joy, not condemnation. Our default should be to love, not to correct, to encourage, not to criticize. (Quote from prisonchaplain)

#16 Jason_J

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 12:10 PM

OH, I see now, thanks.


No problem!

People are choosing between Christian churches, the same as I choose between a parish. LDS (and a lot of Catholics too) view it as swapping between denominations, but that isn't what is going on.

People have different ways of understanding the word "Church". There are many people who view all of Christianity as One Church, which is the proper Catholic view. (Though Catholic belief Christ's Church subsists in the Catholic Church and all Christians by a valid baptism belong to this One Church). People who consider themselves non-denominational or interdenominational, will look for a Christian Church where they feel they can serve God, are comfortable with the pastor, what is being taught doctrinally and if they fit socially. (I would make a tentative venture to guess this is what Joseph Smith was in the process of doing when he prayed about what church to join.)

I think this link might help:

Find a Church - How to Find a Church

Peace.




I agree with this generally, and I agree that the Catholic view of the situation is more nuanced, viewing the validly baptized Protestants as being in "imperfect" communion with the One Church. Also, while Catholicism may view all of traditional Christianity as One Church, it only regards certain parts of Christianity as having valid sacraments, orders, apostolic succession, etc. (such as the Eastern Orthodox and a few others). I think the difference, as to what the OP may have been referring to, is that a Catholic would not (or should not) go "church hopping" from a Catholic church to an Episcopalian church, for example (and should not receive sacraments in that church), while some Protestants are okay with doing things like that. I guess that's what I was thinking when I read the OP.

And definitely, I believe that that is what the prophet Joseph Smith was doing when he was praying about which church to join. :)

#17 madeleine1

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 08:33 AM

No problem!





I agree with this generally, and I agree that the Catholic view of the situation is more nuanced, viewing the validly baptized Protestants as being in "imperfect" communion with the One Church. Also, while Catholicism may view all of traditional Christianity as One Church, it only regards certain parts of Christianity as having valid sacraments, orders, apostolic succession, etc. (such as the Eastern Orthodox and a few others).


Yes, that is what I meant when I said this union is through Christ's Church.

I think the difference, as to what the OP may have been referring to, is that a Catholic would not (or should not) go "church hopping" from a Catholic church to an Episcopalian church, for example (and should not receive sacraments in that church), while some Protestants are okay with doing things like that. I guess that's what I was thinking when I read the OP.


A Catholic can go to any church service they like, as long as they don't participate in the rites that emulate the Sacraments of the Catholic Church (especially the Eucharist) or are outside of it. This has a scriptural basis, where St. Paul taught converts from paganism to not eat the meat sacrificed at pagan rituals.

And definitely, I believe that that is what the prophet Joseph Smith was doing when he was praying about which church to join. :)


Yes, it is the Protestant temptation (the idea that Christ left His Church), many Catholics have fallen for it, and will continue to do so. For Catholics, the Way is Jesus Christ, and it is to Him that we turn. We return to Him, wounded, every time we confess our sins. He is the only Way.

Peace.

Edited by madeleine1, 02 September 2011 - 08:36 AM.


#18 Jason_J

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 03:21 PM


Yes, it is the Protestant temptation (the idea that Christ left His Church),


I think that Protestants and Latter-day Saints would disagree that we believe that Christ left His Church, but I understand that that is how you must see this.

many Catholics have fallen for it, and will continue to do so. For Catholics, the Way is Jesus Christ, and it is to Him that we turn. We return to Him, wounded, every time we confess our sins. He is the only Way.

Peace.


Latter-day Saints agree that the Way is Jesus Christ and it is to Him that we turn, and that we return to Him, wounded, every time we confess our sins. He is the only Way. Latter-day Saints agree.

#19 madeleine1

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 11:13 PM

Latter-day Saints agree that the Way is Jesus Christ and it is to Him that we turn, and that we return to Him, wounded, every time we confess our sins. He is the only Way. Latter-day Saints agree.


In all charity, I'd like to believe you, but after reading some LDS thoughts on the Holy Trinity at another LDS forum, I'd say we're not even talking about the same Person. So I don't think we are in agreement as to Who it is we're turning to.

Peace.

#20 prisonchaplain

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 07:01 AM

Madeleine1's comment is worthy of a new string...so I started one. http://www.lds.net/f...html#post617762

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." -- Lord Acton





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