The Book of Moroni Chapter 8 Critique
Setting: The baptism of little
children is an evil abomination—Little children are alive in Christ
because of the Atonement—Faith, repentance, meekness and lowliness of
heart, receiving the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end lead to
salvation. About A.D. 401–421.
Verse 1: An epistle of my
father Mormon, written to me, Moroni; and it was written unto me soon
after my calling to the ministry. And on this wise did he write unto
Note: Pre-Columbian writing systems used pictures not letters.
In both the Mayan and Aztec languages there is one word for writing and
drawing. Pictures are sometimes read phonetically and texts meant to be
read are sometimes very pictorial in nature. This makes it difficult
for modern day scholars to distinguish between whether an inscription
in a Mesoamerican script represents spoken language or is to be
interpreted as a descriptive drawing. The only Mesoamerican people
known without doubt to have developed a completely glottographic or
phonetic script is the Maya, and even the Mayan script is largely
pictorial and often shows fuzzy boundaries between images and text.
Verses 2-3: My beloved son,
Moroni, I rejoice exceedingly that your Lord Jesus Christ hath been
mindful of you, and hath called you to his ministry, and to his holy
work. I am mindful of you always in my prayers, continually praying
unto God the Father in the name of his Holy Child, Jesus, that he,
through his infinite goodness and grace, will keep you through the
endurance of faith on his name to the end.
Note: Jesus Christ was unknown in pagan Pre-Columbian America.
Quetzalcoatl is a deity whose name comes from the Nahuatl language and
means "feathered serpent". The worship of a feathered serpent is first
known documented in Teotihuacan in the first century BC or first
century AD. That period lies within the Late Preclassic to Early
Classic period (400 BC – 600 AD) of Mesoamerican chronology, and
veneration of the figure appears to have spread throughout Mesoamerica
by the Late Classic (600–900 AD). Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
Verses 4-5: And now, my son, I
speak unto you concerning that which grieveth me exceedingly; for it
grieveth me that there should disputations rise among you. For, if I
have learned the truth, there have been disputations among you
concerning the baptism of your little children.
Note: Baptism was unknown in pagan Pre-Columbian America.
It is also believed that parents in Maya culture would offer their
children for sacrifice and depictions of this show that this was a very
emotional time for the parents, but they would carry through because
they thought the child would continue existing. It is also known that
infant sacrifices occurred at certain times. Child sacrifice was
preferred when there was a time of crisis and transitional times such
as famine and drought. Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
Verses 6-7: And now, my son, I
desire that ye should labor diligently, that this gross error should be
removed from among you; for, for this intent I have written this
epistle. For immediately after I had learned these things of you I
inquired of the Lord concerning the matter. And the word of the Lord
came to me by the power of the Holy Ghost, saying:
Note: The Holy Ghost was unknown in pagan Pre-Columbian America.
The practice of child sacrifice in Pre-Columbian cultures, in
particular Mesoamerican and South American cultures, is well documented
both in the archaeological records and in written sources. The exact
ideologies behind child sacrifice in different pre-Columbian cultures
are unknown but it is often thought to have been performed in order to
placate certain gods. Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
Verses 8-9: Listen to the words
of Christ, your Redeemer, your Lord and your God. Behold, I came into
the world not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance; the
whole need no physician, but they that are sick; wherefore, little
children are whole, for they are not capable of committing sin;
wherefore the curse of Adam is taken from them in me, that it hath no
power over them; and the law of circumcision is done away in me. And
after this manner did the Holy Ghost manifest the word of God unto me;
wherefore, my beloved son, I know that it is solemn mockery before God,
that ye should baptize little children.
Note: Never forbid children from knowing Jesus Christ.
Then they also brought infants to Him that He might touch them; but
when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them to
Him and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid
them; for of such is the kingdom of God.” Luke 18:15-16.
Verse 10: Behold I say unto you
that this thing shall ye teach—repentance and baptism unto those who
are accountable and capable of committing sin; yea, teach parents that
they must repent and be baptized, and humble themselves as their little
children, and they shall all be saved with their little children.
Note: Baptism is not the Christian Gospel.
For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not
with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no
effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are
perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1
Verse 11: And their little
children need no repentance, neither baptism. Behold, baptism is unto
repentance to the fulfilling the commandments unto the remission of
Note: Christians will preach Jesus Christ for remission of sins.
And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is
He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead. To
Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes
in Him will receive remission of sins.” Acts 10:42-43.
Verse 12: But little children
are alive in Christ, even from the foundation of the world; if not so,
God is a partial God, and also a changeable God, and a respecter to
persons; for how many little children have died without baptism!
Note: The Christian God does not change unlike the Mormon god.
“For I am the Lord, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.” Malachi 3:6.
Verses 13-15: Wherefore, if
little children could not be saved without baptism, these must have
gone to an endless hell. Behold I say unto you, that he that supposeth
that little children need baptism is in the gall of bitterness and in
the bonds of iniquity; for he hath neither faith, hope, nor charity;
wherefore, should he be cut off while in the thought, he must go down
to hell. For awful is the wickedness to suppose that God saveth one
child because of baptism, and the other must perish because he hath no
Note: Confession of Jesus Christ determines eternal salvation.
But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your
heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you
confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that
God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart
one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made
unto salvation. Romans 10:8-10.
Note: Have you sincerely confessed Jesus Christ?
Verses 16-17: Wo be unto them
that shall pervert the ways of the Lord after this manner, for they
shall perish except they repent. Behold, I speak with boldness, having
authority from God; and I fear not what man can do; for perfect love
casteth out all fear. And I am filled with charity, which is
everlasting love; wherefore, all children are alike unto me; wherefore,
I love little children with a perfect love; and they are all alike and
partakers of salvation.
Note: Is your faith in Jesus Christ like a small child?
“Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.” Luke 18:17.
Verse 18: For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity.
Note: Sidney Rigdon contradicts himself with verse 12.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8.
Verses 19-21: Little children
cannot repent; wherefore, it is awful wickedness to deny the pure
mercies of God unto them, for they are all alive in him because of his
mercy. And he that saith that little children need baptism denieth the
mercies of Christ, and setteth at naught the atonement of him and the
power of his redemption. Wo unto such, for they are in danger of death,
hell, and an endless torment. I speak it boldly; God hath commanded me.
Listen unto them and give heed, or they stand against you at the
judgment-seat of Christ.
Note: No one needs baptism to enter Paradise.
Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If
You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.” But the other, answering,
rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under
the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due
reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said
to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” And
Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me
in Paradise.” Luke 23:39-43.
Note: Have you sincerely confessed Jesus Christ?
Verses 22-24: For behold that
all little children are alive in Christ, and also all they that are
without the law. For the power of redemption cometh on all them that
have no law; wherefore, he that is not condemned, or he that is under
no condemnation, cannot repent; and unto such baptism availeth nothing—
But it is mockery before God, denying the mercies of Christ, and the
power of his Holy Spirit, and putting trust in dead works. Behold, my
son, this thing ought not to be; for repentance is unto them that are
under condemnation and under the curse of a broken law.
Note: Christians are redeemed through faith in Jesus Christ.
Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse
for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”),
that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ
Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Note: Have you been redeemed from the curse of the law?
Verses 25-26: And the first
fruits of repentance is baptism; and baptism cometh by faith unto the
fulfilling the commandments; and the fulfilling the commandments
bringeth remission of sins; And the remission of sins bringeth
meekness, and lowliness of heart; and because of meekness and lowliness
of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter
filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence
unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all the saints shall dwell
Note: Christians are focused on Jesus Christ not themselves.
In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins,
according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us
in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His
will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that
in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather
together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and
which are on earth—in Him. Ephesians 1:7-10.
Verses 27-30: Behold, my son, I
will write unto you again if I go not out soon against the Lamanites.
Behold, the pride of this nation, or the people of the Nephites, hath
proven their destruction except they should repent. Pray for them, my
son, that repentance may come unto them. But behold, I fear lest the
Spirit hath ceased striving with them; and in this part of the land
they are also seeking to put down all power and authority which cometh
from God; and they are denying the Holy Ghost. And after rejecting so
great a knowledge, my son, they must perish soon, unto the fulfilling
of the prophecies which were spoken by the prophets, as well as the
words of our Savior himself. Farewell, my son, until I shall write unto
you, or shall meet you again. Amen.
Note: The Lamanites and Nephites never existed.
While many city-states, kingdoms, and empires competed with one another
for power and prestige, Mesoamerica can be said to have had five major
civilizations: the Olmec, Teotihuacan, the Toltec, the Mexica and the
Maya. These civilizations (with the exception of the politically
fragmented Maya) extended their reach across Mesoamerica—and
beyond—like no others. They consolidated power and distributed
influence in matters of trade, art, politics, technology, and theology.
Other regional power players made economic and political alliances with
these civilizations over the span of 4,000 years. Many made war with
them, but almost all peoples found themselves within one of their
spheres of influence. Wikipedia Encyclopedia.
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