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Why was a Restoration of the Gospel needed? Haven’t we always had the Bible?

Official Answer

A general falling away from the truth occurred after the death of Christ’s Apostles. This is called the Apostasy (Amos 8:11-12; Acts 20:29-30; 2 Timothy 4:3).

When Jesus Christ lived on the earth, He established His Church. After His Ascension into heaven, His Apostles carried on His work under His direction, through revelation and with His priesthood authority.

After the Apostles and many righteous Church members were killed and other members departed from the truth, the Lord took the priesthood authority and His Church from the earth. Without God’s priesthood authority, the Church no longer functioned as Christ had established it. The ordinances were changed and many plain and simple truths were lost. While many good people and some truth remained, the original Church was lost.

The Apostles prophesied of the falling away or Apostasy. One example is Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians (2 Thessalonians 2:1-3).

The Apostle Peter prophesied of the “restitution of all things” before Christ’s Second Coming (Acts 3:19-21). Having been lost because of the Apostasy, Christ’s Church and His authority were to be restored to the earth. This Restoration would make available the opportunity for all to receive once again all of the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Joseph Smith’s First Vision marked the beginning of the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth. In subsequent years, Christ restored His priesthood and reorganized His Church. He has continued to reveal truths to His prophets and to restore the blessings that were taken from the earth for a time.

  • NOW we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3; “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.” Acts 3:19-22 Show more

  • The Bible is wonderful and it's a miracle we all have access to this record. However, priesthood is required to perform the ordinances of the gospel taught in the Bible - like baptism. Even in Christ's time there was confusion about baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. There were people who had what they called John's baptism who had not heard of the Holy Ghost. So Paul the Apostle taught them, baptized them, and used his priesthood authority to give them the gift of the Holy Ghost. We believe this priesthood authority was lost and needed to be restored in order to perform ordinances in a manner that God would accept. The Book of Mormon does not replace the Bible. It is a companion scripture to the Bible and enhances our understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Together these volumes of scripture provide even greater opportunity for people to learn the principles of the gospel. Show more

  • We have long had the Bible but many books referred to in it are missing & much doctrine is lost or mistranslated. When I first read the Old Testament it seemed a mass of confusion but now I see it as teaching true principles & pointing to Christ & a better way of life. It soon became clear that we need revelation from God, both as a Church & individually. The additional scripture and modern revelation make God's plan for us clear & inspiring. Show more

  • The Holy Bible is a fantastic and extraordinarily important book that can benefit the whole world. However, true religion requires living prophets. The Holy Bible is a record of people who had living prophets, but cannot substitute for having living prophets today. Living prophets are necessary because they lead God's church and speak his words to us. What's important is knowing with certainty that anyone who professes to be a prophet really is one. The Holy Bible has some important teachings that can help someone make this determination. Examples are James 1:5 where we are instructed to ask God about anything we need to know the truth of, John 14:26 which tells us that the Holy Ghost can teach us or help us to know what is true, and Matthew 7:16 which teaches that by a person's fruits, or what they say and do (and the results of what they say and do), you can know whether they are true or false. God will not let us down, and will always provide a way for us to know with certainty who speaks for him, and who does not. There are false prophets, and we must be careful with who we believe, not assuming that someone is right or wrong without knowing for sure through the power of the Holy Ghost. Show more

  • Yes, we have the Bible, and oh how necessary and wonderful it is!! But, "in the mouths of two or more witnesses shall every word go forth". The Book of Mormon is another testament (testifies of) Jesus Christ (it actually mentions 'Christ' every 1.6 verses in the Book of Mormon!). The greatest thing about the Book of Mormon is that it was written, abridged and translated by prophets, and was written for our current day and age of time. Also, more importantly, the Book of Mormon is a witness that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. By reading the Book of Mormon, praying about it and coming to know it is true, you gain the testimony that God does indeed speak to all His children testifying of Christ, and that the work that Joseph Smith gave his life for was truly that of God. Joseph Smith restored a fullness of the gospel. The Bible gives us bits and pieces, but after the apostles and early church were taken from the earth after Christ's earthly ministry, there was no one with proper authority on the earth to guide the interpretation of the Bible. The Bible testifies of these things. It quotes time upon time of the authority of Christ being passed on by the "laying on of hands", that there was going to be an apostasy (not a fullness of truth on the earth) and other important doctrine that was lost though the death of the apostles. Much of the new testament is Paul exhorting Christians in various parts of the world to stay firm in true doctrine, because false doctrine was quickly creeping in. Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to know the truth. He appeared to a simple farm boy, Joseph Smith, and guided him to the truth. Joseph asked which church he should join and was admonished to join none, but bring back a fullness of truth. I know God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith, as two personages, just as they did with Stephen of the new testament. I know the church which Joseph Smith started has a fullness of truth. It is perfect. I know this was part of our Father in Heavens plan, to prepare the earth and reach out to his children prior to the second coming of our Saviour. Show more

  • Well, the Bible hasn't always existed, at least not in it's present form. The Old Testament is a collection of writing from ancient prophets and the New Testament is a collection of Christ's followers and apostles. Think about this, for thousands of years, God revealed truth about the purpose of life and direction of how we should live. Why, then did it stop? After the Ascension of Christ into heaven, his Apostles carried on: teaching, building the church, acting under the authority of Christ. Not long into the growth of this newly founded church, others felt they knew better than these men (both in and out of the new Christian faith). Many leaders rejected the teaching of Paul and the other apostles (or at least distorted their meaning and intent) and taught things they found to be pleasing to their followers. This rejection/dstortion is called the Great Apostasy. It led to the death of the apostles and the withdrawal of God's authority on the earth. As a result, the Christian world claimed the Canon was closed and that we had all that needed to said from God. The Restoration literally was the return of God's authority on the earth. We believe that God speaks to man and that the Canon is not closed, nor will it ever be. Revelation is the key to our salvation, because it is the only way we can truly come to know of the redeeming power of our Savior. That is why we needed the Restoration. Show more

  • The Restoration is needed because of the Apostasy. The apostasy is a time foretold of by the prophet in the Bible Amos. In Amos 8:11-12 " Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it." Amos tells us that there will be a time when the gospel, or "the word of the Lord" will be lost. That time came when Jesus Christ and the Apostles were killed. Even though we still had the bible, there were no prophets or apostles to keep the gospel pure and true. Man was left with their own interpretation of the Bible. As we all know, there are thousands of christian churches all based on the bible, BUT all teach different doctrines. When Christ was on the earth He did not set up thousands of different churches so that there was something different for everyone. He had one church. His church. The prophet Peter tells us that there will be a restitution or a restoration of the gospel, in Acts 3:21 " Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began." In short, the gospel was lost during the Apostasy and the Restoration brought it back. So, now we have the same gospel that Christ set up when he was on the earth. :) Show more

  • The full true gospel of Jesus Christ needed to be restored because it had been lost from the earth. The only way for the gospel to remain on earth at any time is through revelation from God to man. Without revelation from God men misconstrue what God wants us to know or do. This is how the formation of many church come about. Think of a good sized, perfectly constructed diamond that is very valuable. Imagine that diamond was broken into many smaller pieces. Many people would see the value in the pieces and take them and do what they want with them. This concept applies to God's church. When the church is broken by men and women (through falling away and rejecting God's revelation to them) people made their own church with the pieces they had. This is one reason why people of many faiths, Christian or not, emphasize different pieces of the whole that is the gospel of Jesus Christ. They may teach the importance of the Bible, or of baptism, or of repentance. However, as a whole, no church had the whole truth to teach. This was the case after Jesus Christ and his Apostles were martyred. They were the last men for 1800 years to receive true revelation from God to keep the church whole. After this long withdraw of God's full truth, God visited the earth with Jesus Christ, and answered the prayers of a young Joseph Smith and through Joseph restored the fullness of His Church. Joseph received revelations and was chosen to rebuild the Lord's full true church again. Show more

  • When Jesus was on the earth he established his church. To guide it, 12 apostles were called by God and had priesthood authority to act in his name. When an apostle died, he was to be replaced so that there would always be 12 “special witnesses” of Christ (this is shown by the calling of Mathias as a member of the 12 in Acts:1) The early years were troublesome times for Christians. The greatest antagonist to the church was the Roman Empire. During this era of persecution, apostles were killed and priesthood authority was lost. Centuries after Christ was crucified Rome pulled a 180 and adopted its own form of “Christianity” as the mandated state religion. To conform to previously held pagan traditions, ordinances like baptism were changed and creeds of faith, not found in the bible, were established. Recognizing the discrepancies between this church and New Testament Christianity, righteous people protested and many of their followers formed new churches. This era of protestant reformation was critical in advancing religious liberty. But simply recognizing the errors of a church, does not give one God's priesthood authority (see Hebrews 5:4) Even those with the best intentions of following Christ’s teachings need proper priesthood authority to be baptized. The world needed a Restoration of Christ’s original church, not a reformation of an apostate version of it. And as soon as a nation was established with the religious freedom to allow it, the Lord did restore his church! Show more

  • The Restoration was necessary because of the previous Apostasy and loss of the priesthood and the keys of that priesthood which was present before the Restoration had accured. After the death of Christ the keys and authority rested upon the Apostles at the time. From much persecution the Apostles, like Christ, where killed resulting in the loss of the keys and the Priesthood authority to govern the Church as well as the doctrins of the Gospel, and the ordinances thereof. Because of this the church that Christ had established during his mortal ministry fell. The result of the great Apostasy left men to figure things out for themselves.Without revelation and proper authority it led them to establish beliefs of themselves rather than of God. Hundreds of years later whole belief systems were established upon uninspired councils and creeds to follow what they thought to be Christ’s church and doctrine. The result of this brought many Christian churches, which many of them still exist today. We have not always had the bible to rely on to give us the answers in how to build a church. Neither did Christ or the apostles when the church was organized by Christ himself during he’s mortal ministry. It was solely by guidance from the Father, from whom all truth comes from which is how The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints is established. Only by revelation and guidance from our Father and our lord and savior Jesus Christ. Show more

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