My name is Darlington Gbee. I was born in 1980 in the Republic of Liberia. As a young man, I attended the Methodist Church with my parents. In 1990, due to the outbreak of the Liberian Civil War, my family flew to the Republic of Guinea for refuge. Upon our return to Liberia in 1994, we were relocated to a residence that was adjacent to a Mormon church meeting house. My younger sister became friends with some of the people from the Church and she became a member within months. Then, she encouraged everyone in my family to visit the Church and also invited the Mormon Missionaries to our home. My mother too was highly interested and joined Mormonism.
In 1996, when my mother began telling me that the Mormon Church is the only true church on the face of the earth and that Joseph Smith was indeed a true prophet of God, I agreed to listen to the Mormon missionaries. When they visited me, I asked them whether Joseph Smith was mentioned in the Bible. They smiled and said that they used to think and ask similar questions but that when they listened to an explanation of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, they realized that Joseph Smith was indeed a prophet of God. So, they stopped asking these questions and gained their own testimony of the Church. I listened to their standard discussions provided by the Church of Jesus Church of Latter-day Saints and was baptized on October 24, 1996. When I became member of the church, I was very active, attended Institute classes and participated in many of the activities of the church.
My Experience on a Mission as a Mormon Missionary
In 2001, I received a letter from the Mormon Church to serve as a full-time missionary in Nigeria. I was happy and joyful to serve the Lord in order to bring souls unto Christ through the ordinances of baptism and confirmation. February 14, 2002, I arrived at the Missionary Training Center (M.T.C.) in Nigeria and was welcomed by President Nally and his wife. After the training, I was located at Delta State to serve with Elder Stanley, my first senior companion. I learned a lot from him. He had the time to teach and courage me about the work. I became convinced that the Mormon Church was true.
A few months later, I left Delta State and was relocated to Onitsha, Anambra State, to serve with Elder Louis who is also a Liberian. One day, while we were proselytizing, we came across a man who encouraged us to visit him at his residence. We scheduled an appointment and invited a couple of missionaries from the United States to proselytize with us. When we got to the man’s residence, he greeted us with joy and happiness. We introduced ourselves and began with the first discussion. After explaining about God and Jesus Christ’s visitation to Joseph Smith, he smiled and responded, “Young men, what were you doing before coming on a mission?”
Each of us responded by saying that we were in school but left our education, families and friends and came here to share the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. In response, the man said, “It seems every missionary is programmed to say this. Did you know that there was not a single black man in your Church for 148 years?”
The two white missionaries responded with, “There was a reason for that, but the Lord spoke to President Kimball to allow blacks access to the priesthood. That is why Elder Darlington and Elder Louis are here.” Well, I was amazed to hear this information for the very first time. So, after we left his residence, I asked the missionaries why blacks were not members of the priesthood of the Church for such a long period. They told me that it was not relevant to my salvation. When we arrived at the apartment, I told Elder Kamara, a Sierra Leonean, about this. He laughed and told me several things he heard about the Church before coming on a mission. He encouraged me to research this myself and determine what the actual teachings are about Mormonism instead of just relying on what people tell me. So, I began my research.
One day, I read from Doctrine and Covenants, Section 137, and learned that the prophet Joseph Smith saw his brother Alvin in the Celestial Kingdom and he (Alvin) was not baptized. I began to ponder over this and what the Church taught about infant baptism, and I wondered how it was possible for Alvin to enter the Celestial Kingdom without baptism when the LDS Church teaches that one must be baptized or have baptism for the dead performed for him before he can go to the Celestial Kingdom. Then, after a few days when Elder Kamara and I were discussing this, he asked me another difficult question.
“Do you really believe that Joseph Smith saw God and Jesus Christ? How could Smith have seen God in 1820 when he said in Doctrine and Covenant 84:21-22 that without the Priesthood, no man can see God? Elder Darlington, how did this happen? Joseph Smith did not have the Priesthood in 1820! So, how did he see God?”
There was serious discussion among us on this topic and many missionaries responded that they thought we wanted to fall away from the truth. With these and many more questions, I decided to re-investigate the Church. In 2004, when I was preparing to return home, my mission president asked me whether I planned to visit the temple. I told him that if it is God’s will, then I would go to the temple.
I Found That Mormonism was False, and I Became an Atheist
When I returned home in 2004, I was less active than I was before I left on my mission. Instead, I decided to research the actual teachings and doctrines of Mormonism. I used the Internet in my research and discovered that Mormonism was based on fraud and lies. I was convinced after reading many articles from Mr. Richard Packham’s website (http://www.exmormon.org) often and spent all of my resources printing articles and testimonies from there. During my research, I tried asking several of my questions to Mormon leadership and none could reasonably respond to my questions. Thus, in 2006, I became convinced that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is not “Christ’s Restored Church.”
I told my parents that the Church was based upon fraud. I explained to them about the truth I had found and my parents became very angry with me. In fact, my father and mother said that I was possessed with evil spirits and that the devil was controlling me. When I stopped attending the Mormon Church, I used to condemn all other churches and religions. I said to myself, there is no God. I used to laugh at many others who attended churches on Sundays. Then, one morning I asked my father this question: “Suppose you went to bed and dreamed about someone giving you food in your sleep. Then, your father who had been dead for years, appeared in your sleep and told you not to eat that food, and you listened to his advice and refused that food. Then the next morning, after awakening from sleep, if someone brought that particular dish for you, would you eat the food?”
My father responded, “I would never eat the food because I dreamed about the same food and my father told me never to eat such food.”
I laughed and told my father, “You cannot be a Christian because your Bible tells you that if a man dies, his body goes to the ground and his spirit goes to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7). So, how could your father’s spirit leave God to visit you? Do you still believe that your father’s spirit is still moving around the trees, rocks, and mountains?”
I asked him a second question. “A religious man, named Samuel Timotar, served as Deputy Minister for Instruction at the Ministry of Education. He also served as senior pastor at his own church but was poisoned by a friend and died few weeks ago. Why did God allow that to happen to such a good man who brought souls to Him? If God is perfect, why did he create imperfect things?”
My father could not answer these questions. (see below)
How I Came to Accept Jesus Christ as my Savior
In 2007, a friend told me about a soothsayer who was very powerful. I was anxious to see her because I used to believe that these people were created to solve problems. One morning, we visited the woman and she explained many things to me. She gave me a bottle of potion which contained a mixture of leaves and other things to use often against enemies. Then, she gave me a spiritual bath.
The following day, my mother called and told me that she had a dream about me associating with evil ones and that a bottle of potion was given to me, which contained a mixture of leaves and other ingredients. I was astonished when I heard this. I told her that it was just an ordinary dream and that I was doing fine, but the following day, I heard a strange voice while I was sleeping and it instructed me to throw the bottle away. When I did that in my dream, it was set ablaze. So, the next morning, I threw the bottle away.
The following day was a Sunday so I decided to visit a Christian church that was adjacent to my home. That morning, the pastor preached against the spirit world, and I was touched by his sermon. After a few days, I revisited the “Let Us Reason” website and read several articles including Mr. Al Roy’s testimony about why he left Mormonism. One Sunday morning, I decided to open the Bible and I came across Colossians 2:8.
Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. (KJV)
When I read this scripture, I was quiet for a moment and decided to think how I came to this earth. I pondered whether these beautiful things created themselves. Did all these things come by magic? I decided to pray with a sincere heart to know the truth, and the Holy Ghost answered by testifying to me that Jesus is the Christ.
Dear reader: I want to you to know that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. I have investigated both good and evil and have come to realize that many religions talk about Jesus Christ to one degree or another. So, I firmly believe that Jesus is the Christ.
In 2008, I wrote to the District Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and requested that my name be removed from the records of Mormonism. I established the “African Ex-Mormon Foundation,” a non-profit organization registered under the laws of the Republic of Liberia, to help others understand the harm that Mormonism causes. Since I established the organization, I have counseled individual Christians dealing with Mormonism and have spoken on radio stations, in newspapers, and via other media institutions to help Christians understand the actual doctrines of Mormonism.
Beloved Christians, I want to bear my testimony that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). I am so grateful to the Almighty God that my mother and sister have also come to realize that Mormonism is false. Even though they have yet to write their letters of resignation to the Mormon Church, they do understand that this religion is based upon fraud and deceit.
Many books and movies (such as the book Major Problems Of Mormonism by Utah Lighthouse Ministry and the films: The Bible vs. the Book of Mormon and DNA vs. the Book of Mormon by SourceFlix) and many tracts have helped my family and several others living in Liberia to find the truth.
Brother and sisters, I want to tell the entire world that Jesus Christ lives and that He is indeed the only begotten Son of God and that only through Him alone can we find lasting peace and happiness. May we continue to proclaim the true gospel of Jesus Christ and help others find the truth, that they may come out of Mormonism and to the real Jesus Christ of the Bible.
There is a Living God and Jesus Christ is His Only Begotten Son!
The biblical answer to this question is to understand that God created a perfect world, but gave mankind free choice to decide whether or not to obey Him. By choosing to disobey God, Adam and Eve received the consequences of their sinful actions that brought death, sin and imperfection into the world. Thus, in answer to the question about a Christian who died while in the process of living an honorable life before God, we must understand that he died because of the consequences of the fallen, sinful world around him. God is not responsible for the sinful acts of mankind (in this case, the man who poisoned the Christian), nor is God responsible to prevent the consequences of these sinful actions from affecting the lives of obedient Christian believers. In reality, it is God’s mercy that Christian believers who die, resting in their faith in Christ’s forgiveness of sin, look forward to the promise of eternal life with God in a perfect heaven.
If you wish to contact me, please feel free to email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org