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Thoughts About God & Faith

Updated on March 7, 2020
Mark O Richardson profile image

Mark is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He served a 2 year mission in East Tennessee and the surrounding areas.


Things to Consider

About our belief in God...we believe that we are children of God, so we have great potential. Most people believe in a supreme being, they just call Him by different names. But there is only one God that we worship. God and Jesus Christ are united in every way except physically.

Let me make a comparison...let's compare faith/religion to languages. If you only speak English (let's say that is mainstream Christianity) and I speak several languages (the restored gospel). You may be perfectly happy speaking just English (I believe that you will not go to Hell for what you believe it means to be a Christian, and you will be with Christ in the next life). With me speaking many languages, does that make me better than you? I would say not. But I know more, and it will bless my life for it and there will be greater blessings in the life to come. But again, you are free to believe what you believe, and you can be perfectly happy with what you have. There are consequences for our actions. All must choose what they believe in for themselves.

It is always best to focus on common beliefs. Along those same lines, I would not ask a divorcee about marriage or someone who is married about divorce. Would you go to a Christian to find out about Buddhism or Hinduism? It is best to go to the source. Whenever you want to learn about a topic, a religion especially, it is best to go to someone who actively practices that religion. It is disappointing to see how many ignorant and negative posts I have seen from atheists and others who hate the "Mormons" (members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). If I may be so bold, if I wanted to know about Jews, would I ask Hitler?

I could criticize other religions, but that is not my purpose. I do not have the desire to criticize churches that I am no part of and are not attacking me. And other religions have some truth. But I am just explaining my faith, at least to those who are sincerely wanting to learn and not just ignorantly attack. As an example, think of sports fans…let’s say that I am a NY Yankees fan. It doesn’t matter how good they are this year. Boston Red Sox fans will drag my team through the mud and criticize and say what a bad team they are. Should I listen to them? No. I believe in my team and I see the good in them.

Many do not know any of our faith and they are ignorant or go by hearsay. To me, being a follower of Jesus Christ is a way of life. I would say it is part of my DNA. Not just an event. I cannot deny the power of the Holy Ghost witnessing to me of the truth.

We believe that all will have a chance to accept or reject the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I do not believe that a loving God would send people to a burning Hell just because they do not find out about the true church. God will never take our agency and that is one of the core beliefs of this religion.

My belief is not based on logical or physical/tangible evidence, but upon faith and how Jesus Christ, through His Church and Gospel, has made me into a better follow of Him. The Gospel is the teachings and principles of Jesus Christ. If you know what we believe, you know that the teachings in our church are harmonious with His teachings in the Bible when you look at the big picture.

Do we aspire to become Gods? No. Is it a possibility and in our potential? Yes. Does a kitten aspire to be a cat? Maybe. Is it bad because it can become a cat? No. Scripture is open to interpretation, but here are a few examples of our divine potential: We are the offspring of God (Acts 17:28-29). The Greek word for “offspring” is genos which means descent, kin, or stock. We can become the sons of God (John 1:12; 1 John 3:2). We are heirs of God (Rom.8:14-21; Gal.4:1-7). We do not aspire to become Gods but aspire to be like He is in our qualities that are good. A puppy becomes a dog. A child becomes an adult. We are children of God and his offspring. It can be difficult to comprehend the full plan and how it all works in the eternities (where God came from). God has rules that He chooses to follow. He can do anything, but He keeps His promises. God is a Spirit, but also has a body. Just like you are a spirit but have a body too.

The way to know is to try living the restored gospel or at least learning from it. I cannot deny my experiences and inspiration that cause me to believe differently than others who have had their own experiences. I believe that there is more to the gospel instead of just getting saved. How you and I believe is our individual choice.

My ancestors lived and died for their faith. I have learned to be a better Christian through this than anything else. If all I need to do is believe, that shows the mercy of God, but where is justice? I believe in living my religion. Not just talking about it and just saying I’m saved. Good cannot come from evil. God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33).

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Mark Richardson


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