Many critics of the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints accuse us of keeping
"secrets" from those outside of our faith.
The truth of the matter is....we do keep secrets!
know that many of my LDS readers will disagree with me on this point, "it
is not secret, it is sacred" they will say. Even though I agree with them
that we do hold things sacred, we also don't share those sacred things with
just anybody, so therefore they are also secret!
sort of things do Mormons keep secret? Well....Mormons are known for keeping
secret our temple experiences.
Jesus instructed in the Sermon on the Mount, "give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your
pearls before swine, lest the trample them under their feet, and turn again and
rend you." (Matt 7:6) Every time our
critics "expose" something holy from our temple experience they violate this instruction. Paul spoke of these kinds
of critics when he taught "Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto
them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure." (Titus 1:15)
of our critics try to make "secrets" look non-scriptural by quoting
scriptures like Isaiah 48:16 "I have not
spoken in secret from the beginning," or Luke 8:16-17 "No man, when he
hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel... but setteth it on a
candlestick... For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest."
The hope of these critics is to show that the Bible doesn't allow for secrets
to be kept and that to do so must be evil!
However, careful study of the bible does not support this conclusion.
In Eccl 3:1,7 the preacher tells us
"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the
heaven: A time to keep silence, and a time to speak."
critics will continue to argue that neither Christ nor his disciples ever kept
secrets! But what do the scriptures teach?
us look at some examples from the Scriptures to see if keeping a secret was an
evil practice as some critics have claimed. In Mark 8:22-26 we see Jesus healing
a blind man, after he was made whole the Lord told him, "Neither go into
the town, nor tell it to any in the town
." In Mark 5:35-43 we see Jesus healing
a girl who was dead, afterwards he gave this instruction to those who were in
the room, "and he charged them straitly that no man should know it.
(Mark 5:43) And in Mark 7:32-36 we see Christ healing
a man who was deaf and slow of speech receiving the same command "and he
charged them that they should tell no man
: but the more he charged them, so
much the more a great deal they published it" (Mark 7:36).
Why would the Lord ask
them to keep these miracles a secret? Did Christ have something to hide?
Critics of the LDS church will tell you that the Mormons are wicked because
they don't reveal sacred ceremonies found in their temples. Yet the Lord informs us in Psalms 25:14 "the secret
of the Lord is with them that fear him: and he will shew
them his covenant."
Yes, the Lord has things which he reveals only to his
at Matthew Chapter 13. Here Christ has just told a few parables (which He commonly used in His public teachings) in which he has hidden the meaning of
several important doctrines. He gives His reasons for this: "and the
disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He
answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the
mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
" (Matt 13:10-11)
in Matt 13:34-35, "All these things
spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not
unto them; That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying I
will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been
kept secret from the foundation of the world.
" And why is it that
Christ choose to speak these truths in parables? "He said unto them, Unto
you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that
are without, all the things are done in parables." (Mark 4:11)
Critics of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints try to hurt and embarrass members by making light of sacred things that Christ has instructed them to keep secret from those not yet ready to receive them. But let me
ask a question: If Christ revealed a doctrine, truth, or mystery to you and
asked you to keep it a secret would you?
before you say that Christ would never do this look at a few scriptural
examples. In Matt 16:15-16, Jesus asks Peter and the disciples, "...whom say ye
that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of
the Living God." After this, in verse 20, Christ tells
them to keep it a secret. "Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that
he was Jesus the Christ.
" Here Christ reveals a truth that ought to be
known to all who want eternal life (John 17:3) and yet Christ charges
them not to reveal this truth right then! We know that at least one of Jesus apostles
(Judas) did not listen to Jesus and he did reveal him! (Matt 26:46-49)
So who are these critics more like when they
reveal these "Mormon temple mysteries?"
Are they more like the apostles whom Jesus charged not to
reveal his secret (Matt
16:20), or like Judas, who did reveal to men who
Jesus was? (Matt
26:46-49) According to Prov
11:13 "a talebearer revealeth secrets: but he
that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.
explained why he kept the secret that he was the Christ, instead of revealing
it to the world at that time. In Luke
22:67 the religious rulers asked him very
directly "Art thou the Christ? tell us. And he said unto them, If I tell
you, ye will not believe." Is it any different today? The critics scream
for more Mormon transparency, yet they are not looking to believe. For this
very reason the Lord has asked the LDS saints to keep their sacred temple observances
a secret from those who are not prepared to receive them.