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Dear Gramps

I am really confused as to why caffeine and such is such a sin to have, why should it matter? If people want to have it let them have it. I can understand smoking and such but still, I am pretty sure that God won’t care! And if he does he is a pretty judgmental God! Did God send a personal message to all of you stating you are not allowed to do this? Another thing, did you not get all the main ideas from the Mormon bible from the original bible? What’s so bad about the bible that you had to make a new one? Why does there have to be so many rules, why not just follow God and that’s it!!!!! or is that too simple?

Melanie

 

Answer

 

Dear Melania,

You are referring to a formal revelation, called The Word of Wisdom, that God gave to Joseph Smith on February 27, 1833. The word, caffeine, in not mentioned in that revelation. What was said in that regard was the following:

And, again, strong drinks are not for the belly, but for the washing of your bodies.

 

And again, tobacco is not for the body, neither for the belly, and is not good for man, but is an herb for bruises and all sick cattle, to be used with judgment and skill.

 

And again, hot drinks are not for the body or belly. (Doctrine and Covenants 89:7-9) 

Hot drinks at that time consisted of tea and coffee, so tea and coffee have been formally declared to be against the Word of Wisdom. Some people have supposed that God doesn’t want his people to drink tea or coffee because they contain caffeine. That may be so, it may also be that there are other ingredients in those drinks with which God is displeased. He didn’t say. He only said that such drinks should not be taken.

But let’s assume for a minute that God was referring to the caffeine content of those drinks, and your question is, why would God be concerned about people imbibing a drink with a little caffeine in it? It all goes back to a matter of principal One of the main purposes of our living on the earth as mortal beings is to give our eternal spirits the opportunity to overcome and control the physical appetites and passions that are common to the human body. If the spirit can overcome the body, then we are free from the controlling influences of such things as drugs and unclean and unhealthy habits. All of those controlling influences produce unhappiness, sickness and death. God wants us to be healthy and happy. So this revelation is God’s word to us to help free us from the debilitating control of the flesh, with its attendant sorrow, sickness and death, and to live lives of health and happiness.

You ask, “Did God send a personal message to all of you stating you are not allowed to do this? ” Yes , He did! This is the way that revelation starts out—

A Word of Wisdom, for the benefit of the council of high priests, assembled in Kirtland, and the church, and also the saints in Zion– To be sent greeting; not by commandment or constraint, but by revelation and the word of wisdom, showing forth the order and will of God in the temporal salvation of all saints in the last days– Given for a principle with promise, adapted to the capacity of the weak and the weakest of all saints, who are or can be called saints. (Doctrine and Covenants 89:1-4).  

You say that you can understand smoking and such, but you apparently assume that these lesser deleterious habit-forming substances are OK. That, of course, is your opinion. However, God’s opinion is a little different. To Him it does matter. So, I say with you, “why not just follow God and that’s it!!!!! or is that too simple?”

Now, about the Mormons getting the ideas in the Mormon Bible from the original Bible, if you were to read the Book of Mormon, which, from your statement, there is no doubt that you have not, you would find that they are two completely separate books, treating entirely different subjects. The Bible is a history of God’s dealings with the House of Israel, and particularly with the Jews. The Book of Mormon is a history of God’s dealings with a different part of the House of Israel that he led from the Old World to the New World, starting out in 600 BC and continuing until 400 AD. The religious principles that He revealed to his children in the Old World are the same as those he revealed to his children in the New World. Therefore, the Book of Mormon supports and reaffirms the truths of the Bible. But it does much more than that–many of the principals of the gospel are explained much more clearly and completely in the Book of Mormon than they are in the Bible. The Bible is a collection of writings of God’s prophets beginning with Moses. It was written originally in either Hebrew or Egyptian, and has been copied many time by the Jewish scribes, and translated many, many times into various languages. There are many different versions of the Bible available to us today. But the various versions do not all agree with one another; there are many and significant differences between them. Further, the interpretation of much of what is the Bible available to us today is open to question. Witness the fact there are over 450 different Christian denominations in the Unites States alone, all confessing a belief in the same Bible, but each differing from all the others in some particular points of doctrine sufficiently enough to organize a different church around their particular interpretations and beliefs.

Not so with the Book of Mormon. It’s language is clear and unequivocal. More copies of the Book of Mormon are printed each year than any other book in the world, with the solo exception of the Holy Bible. One of the Article of Faith of the Mormon Church says,

We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.

And the Prophet Joseph Smith recorded the following statement about the Book of Mormon:

I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book” (Book of Mormon, Introduction)

I invite you to read the Book and Mormon and see for yourself.

 

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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