Does the Book of Mormon call the LDS doctrines of salvation evil?
When I have had LDS missionaries visit with me in my house, they gave me a basic reading assignment. This reading assignment included among other things the introduction to the Book of Mormon written by Joseph Smith, and 3rd. Nephi chapter 11. In the 2nd half of this chapter, I found that there is a section in where Jesus testifies of his doctrine in the Book of Mormon. Let’s take a look at what this passage says.
In review, the Book of Mormon establishes Jesus' doctrine with three points; repentance, belief, and baptism. Everyone who does this is saved, it is also says that they will "inherit the kingdom of God." The words “Inheriting the Kingdom of God” is as close as a description of exaltation, or to reach the highest degree of salvation that you will find in The Book of Mormon, therefore, it’s not a stretch to say that this is a promise of exaltation and a “ticket” if you will into the Celestial Kingdom. Those who don't do these three things will be dammed. It goes on to say in verse 40, that if anyone adds or takes away from this doctrine, the new doctrine, is evil; and the individual that added or took away from this doctrine will literally go to Hell. To me, this passage, and the doctrine listed here is simple, strait forward, and clearly stated.
I personally, have (point 1) repented of my sins. I (point 2) believe in Christ that he died the death that I deserved, and was a sacrifice of atonement for me and then he rose again on the 3rd day. I have (point 3) been baptized in water by submersion in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit as an outward sign of my inward convictions and as a testimony of my above stated beliefs. So my personal testimony as stated above goes above and beyond the requirements according to Christ's doctrine here in 3rd Nephi, I should be saved, and even inherit the kingdom of God. Needless to say, most Latter-day Saints will disagree with me for various reasons. This causes me to speculate that this doctrine of Salvation that Jesus made so clear here in 3 Nephi 11 has somehow been changed.
www.lds.org says that “In order to be exalted we first must place our faith in Jesus Christ and then endure in that faith to the end of our lives. Our faith in him must be such that we repent of our sins and obey his commandments. He commands us all to receive certain ordinances:
1.We must be baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ.
2.We must receive the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.
3.We must receive the temple endowment.
4.We must be married for time and eternity."
I can see the belief, I see Baptism, and repentance of sins. The passage in 3rd Nephi 11 didn’t say anything about the Temple endowment, and eternal marriages. Where do these fit into Jesus’ doctrine of Salvation? Actually, before you can be let into the Temple, LDS priesthood leaders ask you a series of questions to determine whether or not you are worthy to receive the "further light and knowledge" promised through the temple ceremonies. Some of the further light and knowledge are secret words or signs, and hand shakes. All of this is required to reach God in the life hereafter. This all seem to be an addition to the doctrine of 3 Nephi 11 The problem with this of course is that Jesus shut the door on adding to things needed for salvation as being "evil doctrine", and "not built on my rock".
So where did this added doctrine come from? mormons.org tells us this: "There are various levels of salvation because there are various levels of belief and works among people (D&C 76:99-101). The Prophet Joseph Smith observed, 'If God rewarded every one according to the deeds done in the body the term 'Heaven' as intended for the Saints' eternal home, must include more kingdoms than one'" (TPJS, pp. 10-11).
Again I run into the same problem that if I were to become LDS, how would I settle the fact that Joseph Smith added to the doctrine of salvation after Jesus said that doing so would be evil? Who would I put my trust in, Joseph Smith, or The Book of Mormon? If I can’t trust one because of the words of the other, how can I put my trust in either?