Problems with

Feelings Engendered.

Soul Endangered.

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As a young lad I was very interested in chemistry. I was always mixing chemicals, mostly normal household stuff, to see what would happen. More than once I had my fingers burned - literally - whilst trying to create my own explosives, (this was long before our present difficulties in Northern Ireland).

I remember one occasion when I was about 12 years old, my parents had taken my younger sister shopping and I was left in charge of my two, even younger, brothers who were in the garden playing while I was in the kitchen doing what I did best - wasting my father's hard earned money.

I would, for example, mix salt with washing soda add a little bleach stand back and observe - then dump the lot if nothing spectacular happened, which was usually the outcome (though it probably kept the drains clean).

On this day my "experiment" involved Acetic Acid (vinegar).

I had poured a glass of vinegar for later use and was at the kitchen sink mixing some other ingredients when Raymond, the youngest of my brothers, burst through the door declaring he was thirsty and wanted a glass of water.

Without a moments thought I pointed toward the glass of vinegar on the kitchen table and said "I'm busy at the sink, take my water".

He snatched up the glass and poured a lot of the liquid down his throat before he realised it was not water. I then put on a show of concern: "Oh! I forgot. I had put some chemicals in that glass - they're poisonous too!"

By this time my brother was in a right state and wanting to know what would happen to him. I told him he would feel certain things - I forget the precise symptoms I invented but they were things such as sweating hands, itchy arms, blurred vision etc.

As I announced each symptom Raymond experienced it.

I was amazed by the power of suggestion and have never forgotten that day.

I quickly told him the truth, and gave him some real water to wash down the vinegar. I wanted him to have forgotten the whole thing - before my parents got home!

I know it was a mean trick to play - especially on my own brother who I really do love - honest! But I was young and foolish.

Mormons speak of a "burning in their bosom" as confirmation that Mormonism is true (see Doctrine and Covenants 9:8).

Mormon missionaries will, without fail, point investigators to Moroni 10:4 which reads:

And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. - Book of Mormon, Moroni 10:4. (Emphasis mine.)

The manifestation of the truth spoken of in that verse is this 'burning in the bosom' feeling.

I want you to notice the cleaver trap which is constructed by that verse, the relevant words are those I have emphasised with bold type.

Anyone complying with the request of that verse - praying whether or not the Book of Mormon is true - is walking into the trap.

Look closely!!

The verse says if you ask with a sincere heart, and have faith in Christ, you WILL be told it is true, no other option is given.

Therefore, if anyone prays about it and does not have the truth of it confirmed to them, it can only mean they are either insincere or do not have faith in Christ - or both!

The very fact that someone is prepared to seek confirmation is in itself evidence that they think it may be true. They have already been influenced and are therefore in a vulnerable position.

Nobody wants to feel they are insincere, or that they do not have faith in Christ, so the pressure is on for them to experience this burning feeling, and just as my brother felt symptoms because he believed he should, so the investigator may actually feel this burning sensation because he, or she, believe they should.

Evidence exists in abundance to prove the Book of Mormon is not what it claims to be. There is no need for anyone to pray about it, an unbiased examination of the book is all that's required.

The Mormon church would have you rely on self-induced feelings in order that you may "gain a testimony" that the Book of Mormon, and thus Mormonism in general, is true.

But it's not true, none of it. Faith placed in this religious system, will not save your soul. It is a false system, a cult.

You can have real, solid faith in the Lord Jesus Christ because we have all the evidence we need that He was who He claimed to be and He did what He came to earth to do - die for the sins of each and every one of us. He, who knew no sin, paid the price for ours.

What is the sense of saying something is true because you 'feel' it is true, when all the facts declare it to be untrue?

If you were on trial, charged with a crime you had not committed, would you want the jury to decide your fate based upon their feelings toward you, or would you prefer them to look at the facts?

Jim Cowen
Good Tidings Ministry.