A Princess of the KING!
I am a seventh-generation Ex-Mormon. My ancestors go back to the days of Joseph Smith; one was his personal body guard. Many Latter-day Saints think that anyone that leaves the Church must have had a bad experience, or want to sin–otherwise why would anyone leave? I left when the Lord, in answer to prayer, showed me the truth.
My grandparents were temple Mormons. My grandmother had ten children: nine girls and one boy. She would spend Saturdays getting all of the dresses ready for Sunday. She curled the girls’ hair. Many Sundays after church they would sing while driving to a picnic area, and she’d take out the picnic basket she had prepared from the trunk. Sadly, after about one-half of the kids had married, my grandfather left my grandmother. Grandma continued to rear the remaining kids at her knee: teaching LDS doctrine and living the ways in which they believe. They continued to press forward after losing the farm. They hit many hard times. But Grandma canned, loved gardening, knitted, crocheted, mended, cooked and urged all of her kids to be educated. She believed wholeheartedly in her scriptures and read avidly.
I referred to Grandma as the family’s “wise owl.” Everyone turned to her for advice for almost everything. She was the glue of our family: she held us together in many ways. She initiated family reunions and gatherings on holidays, ensuring their success. She adamantly drove home the importance of family and heritage. She showed me, through my mom, the importance of keeping on when times were tough. She gave her son, daughters and grand kids that same drive to never give up.
Before I became a Christian, having that drive during the tough times meant working hard to get through. I did it because I had to. I could count on myself and on my family. But as a believer in Christ Jesus, I acquired a different outlook. Though that drive is still there, I now can turn everything over to G-d, and He will carry the weight. I saw that there are things in life that I, as well as any human, cannot fix, and we need His guidance and His mercy. I have learned that when the cross is too heavy to carry through the storm, joy, peace, and hope come through leaning on Him.
My mom taught me sewing, crocheting, some cooking, and also the importance of morals and values. All of these things have greatly impacted me, especially now that I am older and raising my own children. My dad loved to take the family on camping and fishing trips. He was also on Jeep Patrol; therefore, the family expeditions we went on were sometimes adventurous! I also enjoyed listening to him play many songs on the organ late at night. I’m thankful for my family and our traditions.
When I was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I went to Primary, Beehives, Mia-Maids, Laurels, Young Adults (Mutual), Seminary, Camps/Retreats, Relief Society, played sports on the church team, and was a substitute teacher. With such fun times, love, and positive family influences, how could I leave the Church? It was not easy. They were not receptive to my leaving. But the truth is, the LDS doctrine left me empty inside. Attempting to become a temple Mormon was really me trying to fill a void in my life that only Jesus Christ could satisfy. I was still unsaved.
When I moved to California to get my sister and I more closely involved becoming temple Mormons, G-d had different plans–a higher calling! Some of my family members falsely accused me of setting out to look for faults within the Church–some still do! In truth, I set out to become the “temple girl.” I took classes taught by missionaries in the young adults ward in California. I wanted to be worthy in that church. I wanted a temple recommend and to marry a temple-worthy man and be sealed for time and eternity. I wanted all of it! It was the plan I set out for myself. During this journey to become temple worthy and taking LDS classes, things began to change.
I was involved in a truck accident, and I needed chiropractic care (my sister worked for a chiropractor at the time). Although I couldn’t afford the payments, the doctor allowed me to barter for service. This gave his wife an opportunity to witness to me. He also was a Christian, and began sharing things about the Bible. Soon my sister and I attended Bible Study Fellowship (BSF), though we still attended the LDS Church. The Bible study centered on the Gospel of John! Chapter one told of the “only begotten of the Father.” Wow! Then Satan was not, as I had been taught, the brother of Christ. John 1:14 opened my eyes: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” The Word was Jesus and the Word was God; Jesus and God are one. He was the Savior, dying for my sins on the cross and rising again. Yet according to Mormon doctrine, “There is no salvation outside The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” (Bruce McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 670). Again, “There is no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith as a prophet of God (Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. 1, p. 188). But the Bible records, “Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). Acts 4:12 says, “Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
I began to ask questions, prayed, shed tears, and stood amazed as I found comfort, yet wondered about “Salvation?” I saw discrepancies in the LDS Church that I couldn’t overlook.
I asked G-d to show me the truth. A few things about Joseph Smith didn’t add up! Why was he so important? Was he a true prophet? I didn’t ask to see if the LDS teachings were false. I simply asked G-d for the truth. And the truth set me free! The harder I looked to find Joseph Smith truthful, the more He revealed to me that Smith wasn’t. For example, many times Smith said, “Thus saith the Lord,” but over fifty of his prophecies never came to pass. He prophesied, for example, that within fifty-six years, the Lord would return. Fifty-six years were fulfilled in 1891 (History of the Church, Vol. 2, p. 182).
Deuteronomy 18:20-22 states: “But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other g-ds, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the Lord, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.”
Considering that Joseph Smith is the foundation of the Book of Mormon, it felt like sand falling through my fingers realizing he was a false prophet. Scripture says, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1).
I had other concerns: in Mormonism there are many g-ds, but Isaiah 43:10 clearly states, “Before me there was no G-d formed, neither shall there be after me.” Therefore it is false that the Mormon g-d has a father, and thus, LDS elders cannot become g-ds of their own planet, nor can the women become goddesses. This eliminates the teachings on preexistence and eternal progression. To believe that Jesus and Satan are brothers demeans Jesus who is G-d, and lowers His standards. To place ourselves worthy enough to become G-ds is blasphemy!
It became evident to me that we are not from a planet near a star named Kolob, born as spirits to be born again on earth. Joseph Smith had no idea what born again meant (cf. John 3:3-8)!
Through more study, I found another troubling area. How can an LDS member have true forgiveness? In Mormonism, it could take centuries and is granted on the basis of a Mormon’s humility, sincerity, works, and attitudes. It would be granted only by living all of the commandments, can be canceled on reversion to sin, the discontinuance of sin must be permanent, and the transgressor must even lose the very desire or urge to sin (The Miracle of Forgiveness, by Spencer W Kimball, 325)! Yet, the Bible clearly states there is complete forgiveness: “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more” (Hebrews 8:12).
When I compared Mormon teachings with the Bible, I went through heartache, anger, and fear knowing I had been deceived. LDS prophets such as Joseph Smith and Brigham Young lied. Their own scriptures proved these prophets false.
My sister gave me Beyond Mormonism–an Elder’s Story by, James R. Spencer. He shared many things in this book of darkness in the LDS teachings with reliable references. My research revealed that the LDS doctrines contradicted themselves. It became very obvious to me that the Bible does not instruct us to abide all the ordinances, tokens, temple works, secret handshakes, to believe that Joseph Smith is a true prophet, stay worthy, keep the word of wisdom, all of the commandments and more in order to have everlasting life… should Joseph Smith grant it! If all of these works are required for our salvation, that would declare that Jesus went to the cross in vain. That would state that Jesus isn’t a redeemer if we have to earn our way to heaven.
Which Master did I want to follow? The G-d of the Bible who is omnipotent reigning or the one who leads to everlasting burning? On my knees, I asked the Lord G-d–as revealed in the Bible–to forgive me for my sins and to be my one and only personal Lord and Savior. After I spent time in prayer with the Lord, I soon knew I needed to be re-baptized. I was baptized in the Pacific Ocean. Then the Lord brought me back to my home town!
About one and a half years after leaving the LDS Church, the Lord blessed me with an amazing Christian husband. I had my name removed from the temple/Church records. I have a strong desire to help LDS members seek the true gospel, have salvation in Yeshua (Christ), and be free from bondage.
I give praise to Adonai (the Lord) for the appointments He has given me; allowing many opportunities to witness the true gospel. My husband and I have been blessed to establish Mormonism discussion/support groups over the years. One of my most cherished witnessing opportunities was when the Lord sent me to witness to my LDS grandma, “Nana.” Though I was scared of rejection (she was so mean to me over the years) and cried, in obedience to my Father, I went in prayer. I spent over five hours witnessing to her. We went to lunch and I prayed with her. I also left the book of John and Romans, and located her Bible. A month later, Adonai nudged me to call Nana. She accepted Christ, and we prayed on the phone together. Four months later, she went home to be with our Lord. She was 97!
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Romans 10:9-10).
The Lord has brought many Believers into my life: my husband, beautiful children, sister, brother-in-law, church family, friends, and many wonderful ministries–all for His Yeshua (Jesus) is sovereign and my Lord has blessed me and has brought me through many trials (witnessing many miracles). HaShem (The Name) will continue to be with me every step of the way. I rejoice knowing He loved me enough to die on the cross for my sins. His salvation is a free gift for those who so desire Him. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His ONLY begotten Son, and whoever believes in Him has eternal life” (John 3:16).My G-d is HOLY, forgiving, all-powerful, everlasting, and His promises are kept.
HE was not done with me yet…..
Through the years of attending different Christian churches, there was still something missing! Though they had some of it right, something was still missing– there had to be more! The blessings of Adonai (G-d) didn’t stop after HE delivered me from Mormonism.
My journey now continues as the gate becomes even narrower. Matthew 7: 13 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. 14″For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
I am beginning to see and understand why He said “few who find it.”
Delving into my new journey (summer 2013), something unexpected happened. Adonai called me while I was busy taking theology courses (planning to become an Apologist). I was lead to hosting a summer study on Revelation –Torah Treasures Revealed using material from El Shaddai Ministries –Pastor Mark Biltz. During the course of these studies (Torah and Systematic Theology), Adonai exposed a severe problematic disaster arising in the mainstream Christianity that’s indoctrinated in man’s traditions. Doctrines of man and their traditions are anti-semantic, and have removed the important appointed Feasts (Holy Days) of Adonai that He made before man for our appointed times. Gen 1: 14-19. He created the signs and seasons – Modiem.
Some might ask who is HaShem and what does Yeshua mean? Yeshua means “Salvation,” and HaShem is God (יהוה YHVH). From the very beginning He already told us WHO He is and brought forth grace in the Torah.
Many Christian churches, pastors, and priests have alluded to the Torah being abolished by “Jesus” using Romans 6:14 “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” Yet, we need to value the next verse 15 “What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? May it never be! “ In other words, many have misunderstood Paul quoting Moses out of the Old Testament in Deuteronomy 11:26 “See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse: 27the blessing, if you listen to the commandments of the LORD your G-d, which I am commanding you today;28and the curse, if you do not listen to the commandments of the LORD your G-d, but turn aside from the way which I am commanding you today, by following other g-ds which you have not known.”
As we continue to read Deuteronomy 15 “But if you will not obey the voice of the LORD your G-d or be careful to do all his commandments and his statutes that I command you today, then all these curses shall come upon you and overtake you”.
Yeshua (Jesus), our Savior and Redeemer, took our sins to the cross on Calvary; giving us eternal life upon repentance and reconciliation in HIS Covenant. We are still expected to follow all of HIS Commandments, but by grace (removal of the curse of death), our sins are forgiven by repentance. This is not a license to sin. HE knows who wants to renew their life (Covenant) in HIM and those who sin deliberately in their wicked ways.
YHVH is sending us a great warning and we should listen Rev. 18:4 “And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. “
I have found and believe that Adonai doesn’t change. He wouldn’t tell us to keep His commandments and then change His mind by telling us is OK to keep nine out of ten.
As I continue to prayerfully learn HIS Ways, the following verse has given me so much to think about and distinguish that this is the “wake-up call” of the narrowed gate as many find excuses to run from : Matthew 5:17-19 17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18 For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. 19 Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” This is a very serious verse to not over-look. The Earth has not “passed away,” therefore, not all has been fulfilled.
There are more prophecies to come before Yeshua fulfills the law; again, “fulfilling the law” has been misunderstood. He will fulfill—meaning He will make the completion (only the curse of death has been removed). The New Covenant means that HE has written HIS Laws upon our hearts. We know right from wrong and have the choice and desire to follow HIS WAYS– keeping HIS Feasts- His appointed times. Adonai has knitted EVERYTHING together to point mankind to His Plan of Redemption from HIS foundation-Blueprints! The 7 days of Creation, the 7 lamps (lights) of the Menorah, His 7 Feasts (HIS Feasts – not “feasts of the Jews”), His 7 Spirits, His Message to the 7 Churches, 40 weeks of a woman’s pregnancy (HIS Feasts connection- chiastically), His Gospel written in the stars, and more!
It is alarming that HIS Feasts have been “changed” by mankind such as Easter & Christmas (and other paganism traditions mixed in). What a wake-up call HE has given me! Thankfully, I have been given an opportunity to really, really seek after Him!
My family studied Hanukkah and the significance behind it. It was such a blessing to know that our Messiah also attended Hanukkah because of its importance! I am carefully removing myself from the “Doctrines/Traditions of man” and following HIS WAY, and leaving paganism behind. Sad, as I thought I left Egypt when I was delivered out of Mormonism only to find myself still there– stuck in “Man’s Doctrines” and “Replacement Theology”(duped twice)!
Many churches still acknowledge the Sabbath on Sunday when it was sanctified, blessed, and called HOLY by YHVH on Saturday (Sunset Friday –Sunset Saturday). Constantine (Catholicism) made that change and many followed that alteration; forgetting what Adonai said: Mark 7:7-9 “Their worship of me is useless, because they teach man-made rules as if they were doctrines.’ “You depart from G-d’s command and hold onto human tradition. Indeed,” he said to them, “you have made a fine art of departing from G-d’s command in order to keep your tradition! “
I am torn that so many (myself included) have missed knowing why Adonai said “To remember the Sabbath (Shabbat) and keep it Holy.” Reading through the 10 Commandments (10 Words), how many commandments did HE make a point to tell us to “Remember?” Was it because He knew we wouldn’t honor the 4th Commandment and justify reasons not to?
It is humbling to know that Adonai has such a deep love for mankind that HE has made a way for non-Jews to be grafted-in with Israel as an “Israelite”, through the seed Abraham. Just like the root of an olive tree, the roots are so tightly intertwined they cannot separate. Yeshua desires the Jewish-chosen people and the Gentiles to become “One” which can only happen when the Jews submit to and embrace Yeshua as their Messiah, and the Gentiles (Non Jews) submit to and embrace the Torah—as Yeshua IS the Torah and our Salvation. If the foundations are removed, what righteousness is left? YHVH — G-d changes not.
Recently, my husband and I both discovered (through intense research in genealogy) that we both are Jews! What an amazing blessing Father Abba has revealed. The timing is rather interesting, too. This is our third year of leaving Egypt, and three has a huge significance (3rd day of Creation resembles- GATHERING, life, fruit bearing seeds, trees). Our Father is faithful to HIS promises: what Elohim has scattered HE regathers! The past year, Adonai has been telling me who I am, but now, He has confirmed my identity with a tangible– Genealogy!
What man has taken (our Jewish identity), HaShem restored by revealing and regathering His scattered people–AMEN!
Can anyone claim with their lips they follow “Jesus” and yet, not follow HIS Ways (Holy Feasts)? How many Christians really know what HIS Ways are when they haven’t been taught?
I plan to continue to study the Creation Gospel, Hebrew letters (each letter holds a significance to what HaShem is revealing to us), the Feasts (HIS Holy Days of APPOINTED TIMES- Moedim), Torah– HIS Word –the Bible (with real Hebrew names i.e. Esther’s real name is Hadassah), as each one has a substantial purpose to everything He is telling us.
I stand amazed and humbled of what Adonai is teaching me; drawing me in even closer– intimately. I have missed so much over the years being deceived by doctrines of man. I am breath-taken in the awesomeness the Father is revealing to me—I can‘t keep up!!
May Adonai continue to draw my loved ones “out of her,” and into His Divine appointments through the Ruach Kodeshka (רוּחַ קָדְשְׁךָ, “thy Holy Spirit”).
Blessings and Shalom,
Shamira the Shepherdess (P. Miller)