Praise to the Man

by Rocky Hulse

In the Church News dated WEEK ENDING DECEMBER 27, 2008, on page 13 is an article titled “‘Praise to the Man’ Choir releases new CD.” Above the article is a picture of the current “Prophet” of the Mormon Church, Thomas S. Monson, receiving a copy of the new Mormon Tabernacle Choir CD from Deseret Book President Sheri L. Dew. Deseret Book is owned by the Mormon Church.

I have BOLDED and UNDERLINED particlular sentences that I will address later in this newsletter. The article begins as follows:

“On the 203rd anniversary of the Prophet Joseph Smith’s birth, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir released in his honor a new CD, ‘Praise to the Man.’

While the official release date was Dec. 23, an early release album was presented on Dec. 21 to President Thomas S. Monson after the Sunday morning broadcast of ‘Music and the Spoken Word.’…

‘In March 2009, the Tabernacle Choir will have been publishing and recording under its own label for six years,’ Sister Dew said. ‘This is the 16th CD on its label. We’ve sold about 2 million CDs in the past six years, and I don’t know that the choir has done a CD more meaningful than this one, which honors the Prophet Joseph Smith. The choir and Deseret Book wanted to have the chance to give the living prophet this CD honoring the Prophet of the Restoration. It is a masterpiece’….

The new CD contains 12 hymns that capture ‘the feelings of Latter-day Saints for Joseph Smith and for all of God’s prophets’ states the recording’s liner notes. ‘This recording by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square is perhaps more uniquely ‘Mormon’ than any they have previously released.”

This CD is simply apalling. No where in Christianity am I aware of any Christian Church, or Christian musicians, that have made and hocked an album or CD that “Praises” or “Glorifies” a mere man. No where have I found an album or CD dedicated to Martin Luther, John Wesley, or John Calvin; let alone Abraham, Moses, or Isaiah.

In Christianity, there is only one who deserves our praise and that is Jesus Christ.

I the Lord thy God am a jealous God

The Bible is very clear about God being a jealous God and not sharing his glory:

5. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the inquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; (Exodus 20:5)

14. For thou shalt worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God: (Exodus 34:14)

21. He is thy praise, and he is thy God, that hath done for thee these great and terrible things, which thine eyes have seen. (Deut. 10:21)

The book of Isaiah, I believe says it best:

8. I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.  Isaiah 42:8

The apostle Paul, chastised those in Corinth for aligning themselves with and identifying themselves with anyone but Christ:

11. For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that there are contentions among you.
12. Now this I say, that every one of  you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos;  and I of Cephas; and I of Christ.
13.  Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?
14. I thank God that I baptised none of you, but Crispus and Gaius;
15. Lest any should say that I had baptised in mine own name. (I Corinthians 1:11-15)

In the Greek city of Corinth, many members of the early church were invoking upon themselves the names of the various leaders of the church saying “I’m of Paul; or I’m of Apollos, or Cephas.” The Apostle Paul was quite clear about his disdain with this behavior.

Continuing on to the end of this chapter, verses 29-31 say:
 
29. That no flesh should glory in his presence.
30. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
31. That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

These finishing verses of Chapter One are very clear that no one is to glory except in Jesus Christ who is our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption.

The words to the Mormon hymn: “Praise to the Man”

1. Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah! Jesus anointed that Prophet and Seer.  Blessed to open the last dispensation, Kings shall extol him, and nations revere.

Chorus: Hail to the Prophet, ascended to heaven! Traitors and tyrants now fight him in vain. Mingling with Gods, he can plan for his brethren; Death cannot conquer the hero again.

2. Praise to his mem’ry, he died as a martyr; Honored and blest be his ever great name! Long shall his blood, which was shed by assassins, Plead unto heav’n while the earth lauds his fame.

3. Great is his glory and endless his priesthood. Ever and ever the keys he will hold. Faithful and true, he will enter his kingdom, Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old.

4. Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven; Earth must atone for the blood of that man. Wake up the world for the conflict of justice. Millions will know “Brother Joseph” again.

Wow! Are those lyrics Christian? Not Even!

Let’s look at verse 1:

1. Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah! Jesus anointed that Prophet and Seer.  Blessed to open the last dispensation, Kings shall extol him, and nations revere.

As we have already seen in the scriptures above, praise belongs to God and him alone. Joseph Smith is proclaimed by the Mormon Church as a “Prophet and Seer.” Deuteronomy 18:22 says that a single false prophecy declares a “prophet” to be false – Joseph Smith made 56 prophecies that we know of that were false.

Biblically speaking, the dispensation we are now in began at Pentecost and will end with the Rapture – Joseph Smith was born in 1805, so that simply does not compute. “Kings shall extol him, and nations revere” – that statement can only be made of the the “King of kings,” which is the Lord Jesus Christ.

Let’s look a the chorus:
 Chorus: Hail to the Prophet, ascended to heaven! Traitors and tyrants now fight him in vain. Mingling with Gods, he can plan for his brethren; Death cannot conquer the hero again.

Wow – Hail to Joseph Smith who rose to heaven to occupy his place and mingle with the Gods and he cannot be conquered again. Wow!

Let’s look at verse 2:

2. Praise to his mem’ry, he died as a martyr; Honored and blest be his ever great name! Long shall his blood, which was shed by assassins, Plead unto heav’n while the earth lauds his fame.

Once again, praise Joseph’s memory. History shows us Joseph Smith died in a gun battle  - martyrs go willing to their death, they don’t go out with guns a blazing! Joseph was in jail in Carthage Illinois having been arrested because as the Mayor of Nauvoo he ordered the destruction of the newspaper The Expositor, which was a violation of Illinois law. He was killed by a mob that rushed the jail, which was wrong; however, he and his brother Hyrum, also incarserated, both had smuggled pistols in their possession. Again, martyrs don’t get martyred in a gun battle. “while the earth lauds his fame” – the word “laud” is very unique. It is an ecclesiastical word for praising God during the “canonatical hours” prayers offered by clergy. This phrase is glaringly blasphemous!

Let’s look at verse 3:

3. Great is his glory and endless his priesthood. Ever and ever the keys he will hold. Faithful and true, he will enter his kingdom, Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old.

“Great is his glory and endless his priesthood” – There is only one whose priesthoood is endless and that is Jesus Christ. Hebrews chapters 5 & 7 lay this out quite clearly. Ascribing to Joseph Smith the office only held by Jesus Christ is again BLASPHEMOUS!! “Faithful and true, he will enter his kingdom” – The kingdom is God’s; we only will receive one of the mansions therein. The word “Crowned” is capitalized; I believe this is in reference to him being “Crowned” a “god” in the distorted beliefs of Mormonism.

Let’s look at verse 4:

4. Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven; Earth must atone for the blood of that man. Wake up the world for the conflict of justice. Millions will know “Brother Joseph” again.

Clearly this verse begins with the inference that Joseph Smith was a “sacrifice” and that the “Earth must atone for the blood of that man.” Again the BLASPHEMY here is atrocious. Only Jesus Christ was a “sacrifice” for mankind and only his sacrificial death will “Earth” know and understand as the atonement at the “Great White Throne Judgment.” I agree that “Millions will know ‘Brother Joseph’ again”; however not in the intended sense of this song. I believe millions will curse Joseph Smith’s name at the “Judgment.” Because of him, their names will not be found in the Lamb’s Book of Life, and therefore, they will be found in their sin and will be condemned to spend eternity in hell. How utterly sad is this state of affairs for Mormons who sing this song at their Sunday services, praising Joseph Smith; who, rather than being their “Prophet of the Restoration” is, in fact, their “Prophet of Demise.”

The Songs on the CD

I’ll list the 12 songs on the CD, and what they’re about:

1. The Morning Breaks – Song about Mormonism.
2. Praise to the Man – Song about Joseph Smith.
3. Joseph Smith’s First Prayer – Song about Joseph Smith and his “First Vision.”
4. Now We’ll Sing with One Accord – Song about Joseph Smith.
 5. This Is My Beloved Son – Song about the Mormon Jesus coming to America and appearing in Joseph Smith’s “First Vision.”
6. I Saw a Mighty Angel Fly – I believe this song references the Mormon Angel Moroni who supposedly appeared to Joseph Smith.
7. An Angel from on High – Song about the Mormon Angel Moroni and the Book of Mormon.
8. Adam-ondi-Ahman – Song about Joseph Smith naming a place in Missouri where Jesus is supposed to return at His Second Coming.
9. On a Golden Springtime – Song about Joseph Smith’s “First Vision.”
10. Come Listen to a Prophet’s Voice – Song about Joseph Smith the “Mormon Prophet.”
11. A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief – Song written by James Montgomery (non-Mormon) that Joseph Smith supposedly requested be sung to him in the Carthage Jail prior to his death at the hands of a mob.
12. We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet – Song written about Joseph Smith.

As you can see, 11 of 12 songs directly relate to Joseph Smith. The only song that doesn’t directly relate is the 11th song, A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief, which the Mormon Church has now memorialized to Joseph Smith’s death.

Let’s go back to some of the text of the article I bolded on page 1: “The new CD contains 12 hymns that capture ‘the feelings of Latter-day Saints for Joseph Smith and for all of God’s prophets’ states the recording’s liner notes. ‘This recording by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square is perhaps more uniquely ‘Mormon’ than any they have previously released.”

Praising Joseph Smith is truly, uniquely, Mormon; and is definitely un-Christian!

“America’s Choir”

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir loves to promote themselves as “America’s Choir.” The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is completely comprised of Mormons and is sponsored and supported by the Mormon Church.

On the Mormon Tabernacle Choir website, it is claimed that the Choir was first established on August 22, 1847. In its more than 160 year history it has many notable achievements: two platinum records; five gold records; Grammy Award 1959; Emmy Award 1987; appeared at 13 World’s Fairs; sung for 10 presidents of the US; and performed 20 times at the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Talking about this CD, Deseret Book President, Sister Dew, said “…I don’t know that the choir has done a CD more meaningful than this one, which honors the Prophet Joseph Smith.” Noting all of the incredible achievements, listed above, of this choir, and the fact that the Mormon Church touts itself as Chirstian, wouldn’t one think that the most “meaningful” recording of this choir would be something about our wonderful Savior? Not so in Mormonism – the most meaningful CD “America’s Choir” has done “honors the Prophet Joseph Smith.”

How can that be? It is really quite simple: Mormonism is all about Joseph Smith. Without Joseph Smith, Mormonism has nothing. The Mormon sun rises and sets in one person: Joseph Smith.

“No Salvation Without Accepting Joseph Smith”

10th Mormon Prophet, Joseph Fielding Smith, said: “NO SALVATION WITHOUT ACCEPTING JOSEPH SMITH. If Joseph Smith was verily a prophet, and if he told the truth…No man can reject that testimony without incurring the most dreadful consequences, for he cannot enter the kingdom of God” (Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 189-190.)

3rd Mormon Prophet John Taylor said: “Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world, than any other man that ever lived in it” (Doctrine and Covenants, 135:3).

When the curtain is pulled back and the light of day is shown on Mormonism and what it truly believes, is it any wonder that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints could produce a CD that it says “…I don’t know that the choir has done a CD more meaningful than this one, which honors the Prophet Joseph Smith.”

Mormonism isn’t Christian!