For those of you who weren’t aware, last week was the national HOPE conference in New York. No, this isn’t a self-help conference teaching us how to increase our capacity to hope (I wish it were). Rather, it’s a gathering of some of the most talented and well-known hackers around the planet. HOPE stands for “Hackers on Planet Earth”.
At every HOPE conference there’s a popular area called “Lockpicking Village” where they discuss all the latest lock picking techniques.
Reflecting on the whole thing, I couldn’t help but draw the parallel to those who somehow think they can “slide” into heaven, somehow opening the “doors” of heaven without actually going through the mandatory prerequisite steps.
A lock is made of tumblers in a tube, each of which must be in the correct place before the lock will turn. Inserting just the right key will put those tumblers in their required positions, but inserting any other key, or a partial key, will only place a few of the tumblers, if any, in the necessary position, and no matter how hard you twist, or how long you wait, the lock simply won’t turn and the door simply won’t open.
So many religions teach the doctrine that man needs to do little, if anything, for salvation. In fact, often they teach that it’s as simple as accepting Christ, or being baptized. But first, baptism must be done by one holding the proper authority, but even then, that is only one of the tumblers in the lock. There is more we must do. Baptism and faith alone are insufficient for our exaltation; they’re only part of the lock. Religions that teach such doctrine, therefore cannot adequately equip you to enter into the kingdom of God.
The proof is in scripture itself, for we will, as Revelation 20:12-15 states, be “judged… according to their works”.
While the sacrifice of our Savior put the gate on the barrier, making entrance possible, it does not make entrance sure. The surety of our salvation can only be gained by approaching that day armed with the right key, the one that satisfies the demands of all the tumblers in the gate, baptism by authority being one of them.
While this doctrine is far from traditional, it is prevalently backed by scripture. And while critics are quick to protest, it is not the burden of Mormonism to back this claim, but the burden of anyone believing contrary to come up with a suitable explanation for each of the scriptures which clearly state otherwise (and which I list in detail here – a post that has gone almost entirely unchallenged).
But the miracle of Mormonism, or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is that through Joseph Smith, the great latter-day prophet, the gospel of Christ was restored to the earth in its fullness along with all the keys, authority, ordinances and covenants necessary for us to do all we must do to enter the kingdom of our Father.
I invite you to learn more about this prophet Joseph Smith (here), partake for yourself in the miracle of Mormonism, and experience the rich blessings that come from understanding and living the fullness of the gospel.
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