Monday, July 20, 2015

Week of the Bible Bashing

Hello My Amigos!

        Well, the title pretty much describes this week in a nutshell.  Here in Mexico, there are three major religions: Christians (they are their own church with different beliefs than us) , Catholics (they all worship the virgin María Guadalupe and many different Saints. There are idols of Mary on all the streets.  They believe that Mary appeared to a man, Juan Diego, and told him "Worship Me". -- Interesting note, this is exactly what Satan told to Moses when he appeared to him), and then there are tons of Jehovah's Witnesses here.

        This week we got contacted by two different people on two different days that wanted to "learn more" or "talk with us".  Both were Jehovah's Witnesses.   With each of them, when we showed up to share a message, it turned out that they wanted to argue.  We tried not to attack their beliefs, but to defend our own.  And in the end, both left with questions that they didn't know and said they would check with their leaders to see if they knew the answer.
         On a different day, also taught a Catholic woman who got really mad when we taught about baptism.  We told her that we believe you must be old enough (8) to make the choice to be baptized. She started yelling that babies need to be baptized in case they die young.  We shared a scripture from the Bible that says children are precious to God and another that says we can't be saved for the acts of others and asked what happens to a baby if they die young and haven't been baptized.  She said they're saved either way, baptized or not, but that it's special if they've been baptized.  We left her thinking about things differently if nothing else.
          And finally, we taught an investigator of ours named Flavio.  He's never had an organized religion, but he's read part of the Bible.  In church, we were talking about the Word of Wisdom and he asked if we can eat pork or if we follow the Law of Moses in Dueteronomy.  We answered that pork is okay, but we shouldn't eat any meat in excess.  He told us he disagrees and doesn't think that's right.  We shared Acts 10 when the Lord says to eat meat, but he decided not to believe that chapter.  I never realized how odd the principles of our church are to other people, or how much stranger their ideas are.  I've never needed to know the Bible so well in all my life.

          Our purpose as missionaries is not to convince, that is the Holy Ghost's role.  Our purpose is to invite.  People can argue all they want, and we can share scripture after scripture to show why we believe the way we do, but in the end, they have to overcome the real problem - the wall of faith.  The only way to really believe in the Book of Mormon and everything our church teaches isn't to prove every other church wrong, the only way is by praying and receiving the answer through the Holy Ghost.  It's a simple invitation, a simple manner to know, and the only one.  But it's real and it works.

Well, there's my counsel for the week!  Until next week!

Elder Jarrett

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