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Home Scripture CRITICISM The reorganized church of Jesus Christ lds

The reorganized church of Jesus Christ lds

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Two weeks ago, precisely on the "cinco de Mayo" weekend, I had a wonderful opportunity to visit many of our Church's historical sites. I had won a ticket to fly to Kansas city and there I rented a car, which I then drove all night to get to Carthage jail in Illinois. After spending the entire morning there, I next went to the city of Nauvoo. Since the house of Joseph Smith, his store and his grave are the property of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I spent about two hours taking the tour which they offer. They are nice people, and like everyone else, they sincerely try to live their religion, but during the tour they said something that bothered me. When speaking of the death of Joseph Smith, they remarked that the person designated to take his place as the head of the church was his son, Joseph Smith the third. However, this initially presented a problem because, immediately after his father's death, he was too young to assume leadership over the!
e church.

Out of respect, I remained silent as I listened to these remarks, but at the end of the tour I went to their visitor's center, while trying to better focus on their position and to understand their reasoning. In time, I was able to have a discussion with one of the tour guides. Here is how our conversation went:

Massimo: "Do you believe that the church fell into apostasy when the prophet died?"
Answer: "Not exactly. There were several groups that were lead by different people, but we believe that since the prophet Joseph had given a blessing to his son and set him apart as his successor, no one could legally lead the church except him."
Massimo: "You mean that the church was still true but at that time it had no leader?"
Answer: "Yes, I'd say so."
Massimo: "Are you aware that every blessing given to someone by the priesthood will be fulfilled if that person will remain faithful to the church and to the Lord?"
Answer: "I'd say that's correct."
Massimo: "As you know, we have the example of David. He was set apart by Samuel to be the king over Israel while Saul was still king. Even in hard times, David remained faithful to God and to Saul, until the time came for him to become the king." 
Answer: "That is a good point, but Joseph Smith the third was a good man, so what is the point?"
Massimo: "According to many different historical writings, it doesn't seem that he had an interest in religion for many years. We know for sure that his mother kept him away from the church and from religion too, perhaps fearing for his safety. However, we do know for sure that Joseph Smith the third on several occasions refused to become President of the Reorganized Church. He finally did accept this position in 1860, but that was sixteen years after his father's death."
Answer: "Yes, that is true."
Massimo: "Therefore, it would seem that in the meantime the true church could not have existed."
Answer: "Oh, but it did! There were several faithful people who took care of the church during this time."
Massimo: "Who were they?
Answer: "Faithful members of the church!"
Massimo: "Which church?
Answer: "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Massimo: "But that one was already being lead by Brigham Young."
Answer: "Not really, because he was not a true faithful member of that church."
Massimo: "Do you mean that Brigham Young was not the leader of that church?
Answer: "Only nominally, with some people. But there were many who didn't support him as a prophet because they knew that Joseph Smith the third should be the head of the church."
Massimo: "So, you're telling me that Jesus Christ left HIS church without any guidance between the time Joseph Smith Jr. died and sixteen years later when his son took over."
Answer: "No. Joseph Smith the third was the natural prophet."
Massimo: "But he had just turned eleven years old when his father was killed. That means he didn't have any priesthood authority."
Answer: "That is why we had to await until 1860 to have the new prophet."
Massimo: "So the Lord left his church without a prophet during those sixteen years?"
Answer: "No. There were some people who took care of it until the time came."
Massimo: "Are you saying, then, that Brigham Young and all the Apostles lost their priesthood and their authority just because the prophet Joseph died?"
Answer: "No, not because the prophet died, but because they made a wrong decision to leave the church by rather than following the true prophet of God."
Massimo: "So you're telling me that common, ordinary people decided on their own that Brigham Young, who was the most senior apostle, along with all the other apostles were all wrong?"
Answer: "It was so evident that Joseph Smith the third was set apart to be the new president."
Massimo: "I know that's what you say, but you really think that Jesus would allow His church to go leaderless just because a boy couldn't become the prophet?"
Answer: "I told you some people took care of it until the time when he could assume that responsibility."
Massimo: "This would make Joseph Smith the third at least the second or the third president of the Reorganized Church."
Answer: "No, because there was no Reorganized church until 1860."
Massimo: "So you're admitting that there was no church until 1860."
Answer: "You just don't understand."
Massimo: "Can I ask you one last question?"
Answer: "Sure go ahead."
Massimo: "When Jesus died who took his place?"
Answer: "Peter."
Massimo: "Was he the chief apostle?"
Answer: "Yes!"
Massimo: "Bingo! Thanks. You have clarified the whole matter here. I never heard in the scriptures of any son of a prophet becoming a prophet. God is the one who calls His servants and no one else."

This conversation took place in the visitor center of the Reorganized Church in Nauvoo. I truly believe that Joseph Smith the third, one day could have been the prophet, not just because his father set him apart, but because he would have followed the path that God designed for him. On the other hand, his mother was very bitter toward the church, and she had many reasons to be. Therefore, after the death of her husband, she didn't want to have anything to do with the church and lost interest in religion until 1860. In fact, she married someone from a Protestant denomination and tried to keep her son away from religion for many years. She especially had bad feelings against the doctrine of polygamy, which she denied that her husband practiced, even though such a fact was well established. If the people of the Reorganized Church accept the Bible they should know that the prophecy of Daniel clearly states that when the true church of God is restored there will be no more apostasy!
because the gospel will be preached in all the world. Even the book of Mormon teaches the same principle that there will be no more apostasy!

The true church has been given a commandment from God to preach the gospel everywhere. Today, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has about 60,000 missionaries around the world. The Reorganized Church has NO missionaries at all! The true church should be an expanding church. Today our church has over 11 million members world wide and growing. The Reorganized Church, after being in existence for 141 years, has a membership of just barely 250,000 people. They proclaimed that their prophet should be a descendant of Joseph Smith, but this is not true of the current head of their church. In fact, they've even changed the name of their church from that which the Lord Himself said it should be called. Now it is known as the "Community church"

They say that Joseph Smith the third fulfilled his calling when he was set apart as the head of the church, and became the first president of the Reorganized Church. However, in reality, he didn't fulfill anything because he was set apart to become the successor of his father in the CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS. Instead, he became the president of the church of the REORGANIZED CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS, which is another church than the one his father presided over.

When Jesus died, Peter, who was the chief apostle, became the leader of the church. This set the example by which the church can know who the next president should be. Joseph Smith told Brigham Young once that he "One day will preside over the church." At another time he said the same thing to Sydney Rigdon, and we also know that he set apart his son, Joseph Smith the third. Brigham Young fulfilled that prophecy for the simple reason that he remained faithful to the Lord. I am sure that Sydney Rigdon would also have fulfilled the prophecy about him if he had remained faithful. The same can be said of Joseph Smith, the third, if Emma Smith had followed the saints under the direction of Brigham Young. In fact, that is exactly what happened to the son and grandson of Joseph's brother, Hyrum Smith. 

Another point needs to be mentioned. Persecution always followed the church. This was true for the saints who went to the Salt Lake valley with Brigham Young. But this was not true of the saints who remained in Nauvoo. That's because the Devil persecutes only the true saints of God, not the false ones.

Last Updated on Monday, 17 January 2011 13:49  

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