Friday, August 10, 2012


All of us should have the desire to bring more light into the world, instead of darkness. We bring in more light when we love, when we forgive, when we repent, when we pray for charity, and when we teach truth. Ironically, part of that process of bringing more light into this world includes bringing to light hidden things of darkness. Unfortunately error whether unintentional or deliberate, false assumptions, and disputations bring more darkness to our already very dark world in which we live. It is important to expose, and bare record of these things.D&C 123: 13

In the previous post, I mentioned that the LDS Church has built an expansive movie set sprawled over more than 800 acres to produce then distribute “The Life of Jesus Christ” Bible videos. There has been much attention to detail in all the videos, from the individual hair glued on for Lazarus beard, to the words in the script. All of the videos go through an extensive approval process by Church Leaders. These videos should bring more light into the world.

You can view all of these new Bible videos that the LDS Church has produced by going to this website.

I want to bring to light something contained in one of the video posted below that has potential to bring some confusion and possible disputation. The video I am referring to is called "Christ is baptized by John".

I am puzzled about a few things after I watched this.We know that one of the first things Christ teaches the people of Nephi in His visit to the Americas, is the importance of baptism. The Lord is very specific on how this is to be done, and what words are to be said in this ordinance. One would think that Christ Himself, would have been baptized the exact way He taught us, so that we would follow His example.  (It is interesting to note that it would have only been just a few years earlier that Christ was baptized before teaching the people here in America.

“And he (Christ) said unto them: On this wise shall ye baptize; and there shall be no disputations among you...Behold, ye shall go down and stand in the water, and in my name shall ye baptize them. ..And now behold, these are the words which ye shall say, calling them by name, saying:

“Having authority given me of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, 
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen”
3 Nephi 11: 25

So, if you watched the new Church video, we have altered the way Christ Himself taught us how we should be baptized. John the Baptist uses completely different words to baptize. These are the words he says:

“I baptize thee, having authority from The Almighty God, 
as a testimony that ye have entered into a convenant to serve Him.”
source unknown to where these words come from?

So why the change to the wording? Ever since I was in primary I was taught the importance on following Christ’s example on how he was baptized. Well, according to this new video that the Church has produced, I was not baptized in that way. So what is the right way? What if my very observant daugther asked to be baptized exactly the way we show in this video. Would my bishop correct me? Would it be valid?  Could this lead to disputations? (t is interesting to also note that Jesus Christ standing on his reverse side of John and John holds Christ right hand with his right hand. this is even different on how John baptizes the people earlier in the video.)

Joseph Smith taught that “Ordinances instituted in the heavens before the foundation of the world, in the priesthood, for the salvation of men, are not to be altered or changed. All must be saved on the same principles.”

Mormon 9:9–11 “ . . . God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and in him there is no variableness neither shadow of changing . . . if ye have imagined up unto yourselves a god who doth vary, and in whom there is shadow of changing, then have ye imagined up unto yourselves a god who is not a God of miracles.”
“[God] set the ordinances to be the same forever and ever. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 133)

In the Church Handbook of Instructions written by those we sustain as prophets, seers and revelators we read that the following about the procedure of baptism. We state the person’s full name and says, “Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen” (D&C 20:73).

If this video portraying Christ being baptism is going to be shown around the world with the purpose set forth in D&C 68:8, to “Go ye into all the world, preach the gospel to every creature, acting in the authority which I have given you, baptizing in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”

...Then I am not sure why we are spending millions of dollars to create videos which shows Christ being baptized a completely different way using completely different words than we have been instructed by the Lord himself.

God does not change. Man does and changes the things of God.


Anonymous said...

Good post. I wonder if the church was trying to avoid showing or verbalizing the actual words of the baptismal ordinance. You know...trying to keep it sacred and not show a real ordinance in a movie....

But at the same time there are countless ways of doing that using simple media that wouldn't require COMPLETELY altering the words of the ordinance. Why did they change it? This was not just a small change, but a HUGE change. There was no need to. A simple camera shift, or bit of music could have been overlayed so as to keep the words more private.

And where was the dove? If your going to portray such an event, we should not leave out key figures.

Anonymous said...

I must have glanced away and didn't see the dove the first time I watched it. Ignore the part about the dove not being there.

Dox said...

Here's my guess. The direction for Baptism in 3 Nephi is AFTER the law is fulfilled, hence is a different ordinance, being part of the New Covenant that Christ brought.

John baptized after the order that Moses was given, so perhaps it was thought that the post-resurrection prayer wasn't the right one to model.

My guess is that the language comes from Mosiah 18, Alma's baptism prayer is from the pre-Christ era, which possibly was though to be the best model for what John's baptism might have been:

"I baptize thee, having authority from the Almighty God, as a testimony that ye have entered into a covenant to serve him until you are dead as to the mortal body; and may the Spirit of the Lord be poured out upon you; and may he grant unto you eternal life, through the redemption of Christ, whom he has prepared from the foundation of the world." (Mosiah 18:13)


Good comments.

How does Christ fulfill the Law? By just following the old law?.. If the comment above is correct that there was a Old Covenant Baptism and now a New Covenant Baptism.. well then..You would think Christ would then establish and teach the New Covenant baptism and show them the pattern in which it should be done, and be baptized that way.. Just like how he gave the Sermon on the Mount. He didn't full in Law of Moses by just quoting the 10 commandments, but taught and gave the new law.

Good point as far as Alma..obviously there were disputations among them on how baptism was to be performed. Possible Different ways, or different words used that was possibly not correct. That is why the Lord is so clear when He comes and ministers to them in 3rd Nephi, and teachs exactly how the ordinance should be performed.

Anonymous said...

My guess is that an effort is being made to appeal to as large an audience as possible. To make it a "universal" thing. To show that we are not that much different than mainstream christianity. I'm sure the words that Christ commanded us to use would seem a bit weird to most people.
So if we alter the words to a more universal and acceptable form, then we might not seem all that different to others. Of course there is danger when we seek to alter that things of the Lord, so that we do not offend others. We can't have it both ways. Any true follower of Christ will be persecuted for being different, it is a hallmark of being his.