I'm not meaning to sidestep. I'm answering on my phone so it's tough to see what you said when I'm replying. Lets take them one issue at a time if we can, ok? I really don't mean to sidestep.<quoted text>Again, I don't see how claiming that other people do something is any kind of defense. Lots of people drive drunk. Does that make it ok to drive drunk?
Do you include the baptized dead in your 30 million count (or whatever it was)?
Maybe it doesn't take that long if you get the right people but I have heard several former Mormons say that getting their name removed was very hard. They basically wrote letters asking to be removed and, after checking a year or two later, found they were still listed. I'm sure everyone's experience is different.
I appreciate that you like your faith but I can tell you aren't very willing to engage in the direct challenges. I think you are side stepping some of my points.
Book of Abraham. Baptisms for the dead. Racial doctrine. Lack of archeological evidence.
There are plenty more, but those are some whoppers to deal with. How do you deal with them?
Ok, so I'm only bringing up other religions that practice similar things to show that it was not invented by Joseph Smith. It comes from ancient times and it is easy for me to see the similarities in religions and that they may have stemmed from one source and have been diluted or changed over thousands of years.
No the membership count only counts living members. And we do not baptize dead people into our church. The practice of baptism for the dead, which is mentioned in the New Testament, gives someone the opportunity to accept the ordinance or not.
If a person dies and never had the chance to accept Christ's gospel, they will have the opportunity in the spirit world as we wait for judgment day. This is evident to me when Jesus goes to teach the souls in prison. Why would He if they had no opportunity to choose to accept him? So since the ordinance of baptism is necessary to obtain the kingdom of God, we do it for them so if they decide to accept Christ, the ordinance is done. They choose to accept it or not. We won't know until we see them again.
Obviously, if they are still aware of their surroundings, and they thought there was no afterlife, they are probably rethinking their position, eh? Haha
So what's the next specific question. I'll try to answer as best my simple mind can