I served an LDS mission in Upstate New York – specifically the New York, Rochester Mission, Mormonism’s “Latter-day Holy Land” during the years 1978 and 1980. During the spring of 1979, I was assigned to be a “Special Assistant to the [Mission] President – specifically to be in a management capacity with the Hill Cumorah Pageant.
During this time, I personally met and inter-acted with a number of Mormon “General Authorities” such as Hugh W. Pinnock, and “apostles” L. Tom Perry and Neal A. Maxwell among others.
On one occasion “Elder” Maxwell actually stayed overnight at the Mission Home – and was able to attend our early morning (6:30-7:30 am) scripture study with us, which included the mission office staff of 6 young missionaries plus myself and my companion at the time, Elder Kirby Glad, as well as our mission president.
On this particular morning, Elder Maxwell asked us to dispense with our usual group scripture reading in lieu of a wide-open Q and A session. He invited us to feel free to ask him ANY question and he would do his best to answer.
My question to Maxwell was simply: “Elder Maxwell, you are a modern day APOSTLE of Jesus Christ – which means you are a special living witness of the Lord. My question is, have you ever personally met Him, if so, under what circumstances did that occur, and could you give us a physical description – for instance, how tall is he, and what is the color of His eyes and hair??”
This, to me, was the most important question one could ever ask one of Christ’s chosen apostles – and the room immediately went completely quiet and hushed as we all waited for Maxwell’s answer. I will never forget his response, and dutifully recorded it in my missionary journal. After waiting for at least five minutes in hushed silence, he eventually said in a tone of deep reverence: “Whether I have personally met Christ and what His physical characteristics are, is a very private matter to me. I would not want you to use my experience and witness as a crutch to lean on – and so I will simply encourage each of you to seek Him in your own ways. HOWEVER, I will declare with all SOBERNESS this day, that I and each of the other apostles, in our solemn assemblies in the temple, HAVE PERSONALLY MET AND COUNSELED WITH EVERY DECEASED PROPHET OF THIS DISPENSATION – FROM JOSEPH SMITH ON DOWN!!!”
This declaration was met with stunned silence by all present in that room that day. I then posed a follow-up question: “Elder Maxwell, please elaborate – were these deceased modern prophets who came to you in the temple, were they in spirit form only, or did they have a resurrected body of flesh and bone?” His answer closed the matter in finality: “I think I have already told you way too much information – that is all!” With that, he excused himself to prepare for his flight back to SLC.
This July 21, 2014 marks the tenth anniversary of the death of Mormon “apostle” Neal A. Maxwell. I have to wonder if, after his death, he has managed to appear in the “solemn assemblies” in the upper room of the SLC temple as well, or is that privilege only reserved to the past LDS Presidents, and not to mere “apostles”.
At the time, I thought this was a very special and wondrous witness of the incredible spiritual prowess of the Mormon top leaders. Imagine – hobnobbing with dead prophets – even Joseph Smith himself!! I had absolutely no doubt that Elder Maxwell was telling the complete truth. Today, however, as a devout and loyal biblical Christian, I see the event much, much, differently – even though I still believe that Maxwell was honest and sincere in his declaration that morning.
Here is the dilemma. In the Book of I Samuel, 28:3-25 we read of Saul in desperation going to a necromancer – the infamous “Witch of Endor” for counsel instead of supplicating the God of Israel. Who does the Witch of Endor bring forth to COUNSEL Saul in his time of trouble? Why the deceased PROPHET SAMUEL of course. I submit this is the first incidence of a living religious leader meeting with a DECEASED PROPHET. But was it really the Prophet Samuel that Saul met, or was it a FAMILIAR SPIRIT masquerading as the deceased prophet? I submit that demonic entities known as “familiars” can appear as anyone they want at any time. I submit they are very cunning and deceitful – primarily because my bible tells me so. (See Leviticus 20:27, 2 Chronicles 33:6, and 1 Chronicles 10:13) Furthermore, since Maxwell did not elaborate on the matter, it is more than likely it was a SPIRIT entity that appeared to them, and NOT a resurrected individual.
The bottom line is this – Mormon Apostle Neal A. Maxwell had the opportunity that morning in Rochester New York, to give a powerful, first-person witness of the reality of Jesus Christ. Instead, he gave a roomful of young, eager missionaries an extremely creepy witness of DEAD PROPHETS rather than focusing on and testifying of the reality of one Jesus of Nazareth.
Furthermore, one of highest spells of WITCHCRAFT and the SATANIC BLACK MAGIC “Priesthood” is the process of summoning the deceased spirits of powerful people. (See http://www.satansheaven.com/necromancy.htm) Nowhere in the New Testament did Jesus, or any of His original apostles talk of conjuring dead spirits, prophets or otherwise, as being a “gift of the spirit” and something to be anxiously engaged in. Rather, Christ – the God of Life and the Living counseled His disciples to simply FOLLOW HIM – and “let the Dead bury the Dead”. (Matthew 8:22)
Why should true Christians be surprised at this, since the very Book of Mormon declares that it has a “familiar spirit” that whispers “out of the dust”. LeGrand Richards in his book “A Marvelous Work and a Wonder” even went so far as to declare that every single Book of Mormon has its very own “familiar spirit” attached to it. See also Isaiah 29:4 which Joe Smith plagiarized and declared that the B of M would “whisper from the dust” just like a familiar spirit (according to the words of Isaiah.)
You see, FAMILIAR SPIRITS are nothing more than deceiving demonic entities, the Holy Bible is VERY clear on that subject.
There is only one word to describe this account from the very lips of Neal Ash Maxwell: BIZARRE!!!!!