A Response to a Friend.
Here is treated a few items of disputation among Christians, and the resolution thereto as authoritatively and decisively declared by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the only true and living church on the face of the earth:
On account of deleting the word of God, removing theosis (that we can become Gods) from Christianity, “most Christians say the bible says you can’t become like God.” Or better yet, “The bible obviously says you can’t become like God” (since there is no private interpretation and anyone in their right mind should agree with them!)
Well, that actually is a private interpretation. Indeed the author of the bible meant it to say one thing and one thing alone, but that one thing seems to not be very popular.
I declare that God has appeared in 1820 to Joseph Smith to call him as an authorized prophet and again reestablish the true non-private interpretation of the bible.
…Like CS Lewis put it; it wasn’t just that Jesus made the world lighter, it’s that all things were seen new via the light he shined on me.
… thus you see the need for a church, so that the rules are defined, and people can’t have “their own personal Jesus”, but that they answer to “THE Jesus” the real one, and there is only 1 Jesus (1 Lord 1 faith 1 baptism it says). Without an organization that represents Jesus, people can get the wrong idea about WHO Jesus is and WHAT he expects of them (and yes, I think that the bible isn’t enough, so many people read the bible and profess to adhere to it 100%, yet they all have many different interpretations about how we can/should live.).
If I’m not mistaken your religion emphasizes a confessing of Jesus as being the bar for getting into heaven. While this idea is in the scripture, the LDS believe that confessing Jesus also means conforming to his laws. And lest people be confused about his laws, Jesus has a church on earth, his organization for teaching what those laws are (again the bible is insufficient in this regard, look at the many churches disagreeing).
Let me give an example:
a man writes a book.
100 people come and start companies saying, “hey come live by the book!” but the companies all have their own way of doing it.
Then the author of the book shows up and says “what’s going on here? You guys are perverting what was supposed to be clear and uniting. From here on out, I will declare in person what I meant by my book. The book is still critical, but in case of dispute, I’m here, come ask me. When I have to be away on business, you can come talk to this person, whom I myself have declared as my representative. I will communicate with him, I trust him to do this, and will strike him down if he ever goes astray in passing on exactly what I tell him.”
thus the truth is kept alive and honored the way the author meant it to be.
I give you this slightly more elaborate response to teach you, not to say that salvation comes from all these things. LDS believe Jesus Christ is the source of all blessings we receive. LDS believe that we are saved only through Christ. But when you get into “who” is Christ and “what” does he expect of us, that is where the church comes in handy.