Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Temple Worship and Sacrifice after Christ?

[Book of Mormon]
“And they also took of the firstlings of their flocks that they might offer sacrifice and burnt offererings according to the Law of Moses.”(Mosiah 2:3)
Here is the deal, the law of Moses only allows sacrifices to happen at the tent of meeting, or later the temple that replaced the tent of meeting. This is why Jews of the Diaspora did not offer sacrifices, or build temples anywhere else. But there is further complication here. Even more than we had when Nephi and Lehi were offering sacrifices in the desert outside Jerusalem at the beginning of this book. The Book of Mosiah is after the coming of Jesus, many hundred years after according to Mormon in the previous book. Jesus replaces the temple in Christianity. After Jesus rises from the dead there is no more need for a temple, even if the disciples continued to worship there for a time the need had gone. Why? Because Jesus is the temple, as he says:
“Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." [20] The Jews then said, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?" [21] But he was speaking about the temple of his body. “(John 2:19-21 (ESV)
He also speaks to the end of temple worship in John Chapter 4: Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. [22] You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. [23] But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. [24] God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth." ( John 4:21-24 (ESV)
And then there is the fact that the believers in Christ, as the body of Christ himself, also become a temple.
“Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? [17] If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple. “ (1 Cor. 3:16-17 (ESV)
I could go on here. But there is one other point I want to ask. If the law of moses is still in play after the appearing of Christ, why are there not clouds of smoke wafting through Salt Lake with the aroma of roast lamb? What if any does the LDS temple worship have to do with Old Testament Temple worship? In fact it is the presence of “temples” that more than anything convinces me that the LDS religion is not Christian. Paul never commanded a temple to be built in Ephesus, or Corinth, Rome or anywhere else.


Steve Martin said...

Good one, Bror!

I never thought about that way before, but the mere presence of Mormon Temples, speaks volumes about their lack of knowing who Christ is.

Jonathan said...

I appreciate your approach to these. Me, I just can't get past calling it a bunch of fabricated malarkey, a cheesy rip-off by a scammer. Not much room for conversation in that. You rather hit 'em with the full weight of the law they're aspiring to and just assume arguendo that the text is for real. Haven't seen any nibbles here though. You?

Bror Erickson said...

No I haven't seen any nibbles. Though my late organist argued with me over email on some of them before she died. I know she heard the gospel before she died. Part of me thinks she actually came to believe it before she died. I don't know. She never confessed it, not to me.

Jonathan said...

Well, your organist certainly heard the gospel communicated to her in her language through the great hymns of the church.

According to Luther, next in line after the Word, music is greatest, and all that.