RE: Moontan: Try and be fair about others interest in the Mormon people
and their history. Read the Mormon doctrine and you will learn that for the most
part it is not non-Mormons (or as you refer to as antis) that shut out or oppose
Mormons. It is the Mormon doctrine that shouts the alarm and challenge that; you
are with us or you are against us, you can not be elevated to the celestial
kingdom if you are not Mormon and one of us. This is a source of the problem.
Mormons think they are superior to everyone else, naturally this going to cause
some push back.
Moontan,LDS Doctrine teaches that the Church will roll forth and
consume the whole earth; that the church is currently just ecclesiastical, but
will someday (soon?) be "both political and ecclesiastical, and will have
worldwide jurisdiction in political realms" (Bible Dictionary); and that
"they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of his
servants, neither give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles, shall be
cut off from among the people".Does the fact that I refuse to
bow to your Church's god, and your Church's leaders and your
Church's authority, even and especially when it is political, make me
"anti-Mormon"?If so, I accept the title proudly.
Joggle .... Re "People of different beliefs and religions would be opposed
to Mormonism because they don't believe the same thus that high percentage
can apply."Not true at all. There is a difference between
opposition and disagreement. I'd agree that probably 99.9% of folks
disagree with LDS doctrine, but only a small and insignificant percentage
classify as "anti-Mormon." One can disagree without being offensive or
insulting about it. I've never been to a Muslim website and criticized
believers or the Koran, for example. I respect Muslims. I have no need to attack
their faith, as you see several anti-Mormons doing here. When I use
the word 'anti' I mean exactly that. Hostile to. Those who have a need
to insult Mormons here ... with harsh comments about Joseph, the Book of Mormon,
the Church, etc. There are perfectly acceptable ways to voice disagreement with
each of those; and there are perfectly offensive and cruel ways to do so, too.
If those who disagree with Mormonism absolutely MUST visit here to comment, at
least they could be polite about it. An added treat would be if they
could offer a new argument.
@MoontanANTI also means....one that is opposed or a person who is
opposed to a particular practice, party, policy, action, etc. . People of
different beliefs and religions would be opposed to Mormonism because they
don't believe the same thus that high percentage can apply. You are wrong!
Try again!With that being said....I've come to believe that
Mormons use the term "Anti-Mormon" way too liberally. It seems to me
that it's sometimes so overused that it's lost it's real meaning.
In some cases, I think it's used to dismiss sincere and legitimate concerns
that members and non-members have about Mormonism. I think that often the use of
the term "anti-Mormon" reflects more upon the user than it does upon the
person or statement being described. All too often, people within the Church
exhibit a persecution complex in labeling anything other than effusive praise as
"anti-Mormon." For me, the only thing which would qualify as anti-Mormon
are malicious mischaracterization of Church doctrine or history in an attempt to
discredit the Church, however, often simply disagreeing with many aspects of the
Church is falsely interpreted as anti-Morman!
When pigs fly... When hell freezes over...Wait? Is there a nicer
way to say it? Well, if the site monitors are off today, this explains all the
off-topic, personal attacks going on here.I hope these ideas are not
from mainstream Mormons, because these are just bizarre. But if you want a
bizarre theology, it's all yours. And it has been since 1830. Polygamy,
polytheism, pagan/Masonic oaths...You want mainstream, get
mainstreamed. You want excluded, stay exclusive. Just stop showing up on my
doorstep with free books that my church uses, reads from weekly, believes in,
and will die for. Smiley boys on bikes who can't explain their way out of
the OT temple worship being about sacrifices and NOT marriage ceremonies, will
never be mainstreamed.You tossed polygamy, exclusive all-white
priesthood, and Masonic rituals. Just go all the way and come into the Tent of
Christianity....or not. But you're not coming in with your own
definitions, your new revelations, and your total revision of God's Word.
Call it anything you want. But you're not redefining our God, our Book,
You use the same words, RAB, but they don't mean the same thing at all.
What you worship is not what the Jews worship, nor is what the Christians
worship. The Islamic and Jewish gods are close. Not a weapon, but a fundamental
truth and I'm an atheist. Mealy mouthed phrases with qualifications you
could drive a truck through - "that to mankind, God is both omnipotent and
omnipresent" - merely show that in fact you don't believe what they do.
Skeptic ... anti = 'against; hostile to.' That's not 99.9% of the
world. Its probably not even .9%. Try again.
RE: Moontan: You state: Forget what a person says about his/her beliefs, and
watch how they live. That's where the anti's fall short. Your thinking
is extremlly superficial if not insane. Do you realize from your Mormon point of
veiw the anti's are over 99.9% of the world population. And there is no
information or prove that Mormons are better behaved than the rest of the world.
We all need to try harder. I hope you are a good example.
@sigmund5 ... No, never been to Utah. Mall sounds nice, though. I suspect its
put a lot of people to work. And of course mainline churches would do the same,
only they'd do it with money tithed to God. Jim Bakker went to prison for
that very reason. Look at some of the mansions owned by the television
preachers. Again, money tithed to God. But look now. To an
anti-Mormon, any argument however strained will do, and there isn't any
reasoning with them. The people here who criticize the Church because of
polygamy 100+ (!) years ago would have NO problem if their non-Mormon neighbor
had 4 or 5 live-ins. "To each their own ... unless you're Mormon."
Those would decry a history of alleged racism wouldn't dream of living in a
minority neighborhood, or of sending their kids to their schools. And how many critics of the Church and that mall shop there?Forget
what a person says about his/her beliefs, and watch how they live. That's
where the anti's fall short.
@RAB: You seem to find a way to rationalize most everything. If someone in the
church were to say the moon is a cube you would find a way to belive it. It is
easy to understand how one can find many wonderful things to love and enjoy in
the Mormon church, but get real.
@RAB What do you consider ample evidence? I know of no historical,
anthropological or scientific evidence for any such civilizations. No artifacts
certainly have not been found.
@RAB"God waited to give black men the priesthood until black men began
demanding their civil rights. "1978 was over a decade after the
civil rights act was passed."You seem to conveniently forget
that the deadly persecution of the Mormons in Missouri was almost entirely in
response to their lack of support for slavery. "Even if that
were accurate for Missouri (I'm skeptical that it was "almost
entirely" the reason, I believe it was a minor reason) it wouldn't
explain their issues in free states like Illinois or the fact that the RLDS
church which stayed behind didn't seem to have the same level of problems
which suggests to me that polygamy was the largest cause of problems.
@ DemiurgeWrong. From the earthly mortal perspective in which the
Bible was written (the only perspective that matters in this life), LDS church
members believe the same as all Christians do--that to mankind, God is both
omnipotent and omnipresent. We worship no God except Him. LDS beliefs about
God’s actual form and nature are quite irrelevant with respect to this
life, which is why such beliefs are rarely emphasized. The only people who find
such doctrines meaningful are people who use them as a weapon for devaluing
Mormon Christianity.@ sigmund5Somehow I doubt that the
arrival of the 21st century automatically erased the ample evidence that the
Book of Mormon events could have taken place. Grossly overstated
blanket accusations with regards to racism among Mormons are just vindictive and
meaningless. Though I’m sure they must exist, I never knew a Mormon who
wantonly mistreated blacks. You seem to conveniently forget that the deadly
persecution of the Mormons in Missouri was almost entirely in response to their
lack of support for slavery. And City Creek Cneter--an investment in improving
downtown Salt Lake. Not about money.
Quote from the article: "If Mormons think of themselves as another Christian
denomination, the risk of defection rises."The real fear amongst
our fellow Christian sects is just the opposite, namely that if they endorse the
perception that Mormons are just "another Christian denomination," then
there could be many more "defections" to Mormonism.
@Moonton "Let them have their prosperity theology, scandals, private jets
and lavish lifestyle" Have you been to the new 2 BILLION dollar church mall
in SLC? Mormonism in Utah is VErY much into the prosperity gospel. It is all
about money as a sign of grace and the importance of making money and buying and
consuming to keep up with the Joneses. No other mainstream church would dare
use 2 Billion dollars to build an alter to upper middle class conspicuous
@RAB "God waited to give black men the priesthood until black men began
demanding their civil rights. " is an interesting explanation. Even tho
justifying racism in this way is interesting in terms of logic I guess it is
better than the complete silence from the church on why racism was such an
essential part of church history.
The problem with going mainstream is that the mainstream always gets it wrong.
@ ThinkmanWrong. 1.Priesthood for blacks
was not about pleasing the world. God waited to give black men the priesthood
until black men began demanding their civil rights. 2.Temple
ordinances are not supposed to be known outside the most worthy membership. The
changes were made only to eliminate misunderstandings among members.3.Lorenzo Snow’s expression about man’s godhood is thoroughly
embraced by the church. Unfortunately, the church is forced underemphasize all
things that are grossly overemphasized and publicly misrepresented by the
opponents of the church.4 and 5 The church is forced overemphasize
all things that are underemphasized and publicly misrepresented by opponents of
the church.@ Brahmabull and LValfreYou are right that
people maybe are just thinking God told them to do things. However, I love my
kids and therefore I make sure to guide them from harm and towards wisdom. A
loving God would do no less for us. Regardless of our imperfections, He would
STILL select the wisest and most receptive of us and provide guidance for us
Will Mormonism give up the insistence that people say that the myth stuff about
Laminites etc. has no historical or scientific basis? This is the 21st Century
will the 19th Century elements of the religion going to be given up? Will the
church stop creating propaganda and complicated apologia that any reasonable
person knows is a sham and can't muster the mental gymnastic ability to
hold onto? Will the church be able to move onto a mytho-poetic notion of
religion and not the bury your rational mind in the sand and listen to the old
The words of the Prophets are third level scriptures if you will. First level
are the accepted scriptures, second level are those books published by the
quorum of the 12 (i.e. Jesus the Christ). These have been vetted (knowing that
there are a few issues with translation). The words of the prophets are below
that until they are elevated to scripture as we have seen in the last few
sections of the D&C. It is a process of seeing how they hold up with time.
The Proclamation on Marriage is one such document that may, over time, be
elevated to scripture.That said, the teachings of the Prophets is replete
with their wisdom which is generally much better than our own and should be
respected. And there are times when what they say is due to a plain and direct
revelation. During the invasion of Buchanan's Army Pres. Young gave a fiery
speech about fighting. In the afternoon he got up and said "This morning you
heard Brigham Young, Thus saith the Lord" and completely reversed himself.
If you have ever received personal revelation, you will understand the
difference between your best solution, and the Lord's.
Nothing about me throughout the entire course of my life has ever been what
others would call "common", "ordinary", or "mainstream".
I am happy that my religion is not so either, and I would not want it any other
The "god" of the LDS is not "god" as understood by other Semitic
religions. The LDS god is neither omnipotent nor omnipresent, though it may be
omniscient. The existence of multiple deities (whether one is to do with them or
not) precludes the first two, along with the idea that god is inside the
universe in a physical body.The universe to the LDS was not created
ex nihilio by their god, nor were "souls" created by their god, but like
that matter which formed the universe always existed.These
differences are fundamental, not peripheral, differences in the nature of the
respective deities.Because of this, the LDS will never be mainstream.
@Brahmabull,I agree. If you have personal revelations and a
relationship with God .... why subjugate your conscious to a prophet?
Is it then possible that god didn't tell them to do it at all? I mean it
seems rediculous that god would say to do something, then later say wait now
don't do it. Do this, now stop, now do that, now stop. I don't think
god cares about all of these little things. I think he cares about how we treat
others, that is what every commandment comes back to. Not how much money I pay
in tithes, not how many times I step into a building on sundays, not how many
times I read the words(opinions) of prophets in the scriptures from thousands of
years ago, in a land not near here, in a culture not close to mine. I don't
think he cares if I smoke or gamble or have facial hair. Point is, maybe it is
the people are just THINKING god told them to do something. Didn't Warren
Jeffs claim that god told him to do what he did? Anybody can say that.
The leadership of the LDS church seemingly does want the "mainstream
religion" moniker.Why?1. Blacks get the priesthood
over 100 years after slavery is ended2. Softening and changes in the
temple ordinances3. Church no longer embraces the Hinckley-named couplet:
As God is man may become and as man is, God once was.4. Promotion of the
Bible on TV by the LDS Church5. I am a Mormon campaignThese
are hard evidence items of the LDS church leadership wanting the church to be
more mainstream. Other very clear indications are evident as well.
It's hard not to draw comparisons between the LDS Church and the RLDS
Church, which has become so "mainstream" (even changing its name to the
"Community of Christ") that from my perspective it almost has no reason
to exist, at least separately from a number of protestant churches. Our
relevancy lies largely in what distinguishes us from other religious faiths, or
from the world in general, so it's almost a truism that the more mainstream
we become, the less we have to offer.
This article fails to consider the difference between doctrinally mainstream and
societally mainstraim. I think Mormons can be recognized as mainstream in the
sense that they are not viewed as a cult or fringe religion and yet not be
considered mainstream in the sense of abandoning or diminishing the doctrines
which distinguish Mormons from other religions. We can still be a peculiar
people even as we become a more populous people, popular people, or at least
more publicly recognized people.
Juan Figueroa - Very little of what you described is really a problem outside
Utah. There are lots of places where chapels are a short drive away,
homework-free youth nights, etc. And outside Utah, you get early morning
seminary, which frees up a period for advanced students to take another class.
And you get two political parties!
I love the statement that "Mormons are a peculiar people".Every
bit as peculiar as Scientologists, Jehovah Witness, etc. etc. etc.All a
little different, all think they're "right", all expect your money,
time and devotion.The entire block of Mormons do worry a little too much
about what others think."We spend our whole lives worrying about what
others think about us, we get older and find out nobody was paying any
To: als Atheist Provo, UT - you made the statement "We have seen such
Dominionist belief systems throughout history. It never turns out well for those
who don't believe the same way." This implies that Jesus Christ has
returned to the earth. Do you really think that things will be the same given
this change in direction? You needed to qualify your comments by indicating that
the LDS believe that Christ will be the head of all things. Even as a non-member
I understand this from their teachings and you live in Utah. If we make the
assumption that Christ is now the leader of all, it would be reasonable to
assume that the "domination" that you suggest would not exist based upon
what we read of Christ's teachings in the Bible. Now if you do not believe
in Christ, then what the LDS believe has no value to future events.
Yes. I see it as a mostly good thing. However what some Mormons want most is to
be Reconized as the Worlds Only Religion or Only True Religion. All others
falling somewhat short.That Not Happening any time soon. So we take
what we can get. In any good Religious Demographic Pie. (As a direct Marketer I
made my living with Dempgraphics), Mormons have their own small Slice. They are
other wise listed as Christian or Other. However in the Good Pies the ones with
lots of suger and sales, Mormons have their own small slice. (around 10 percent
more or less) World wide its a % of less then 1, but you are talking a 7 Billion
People and including the Non Religious. Good Demo Pies do Not Lump Mormons. Now Mormons don't even lump Mormons. Active, Less Active, Inactive,
Widow, Single Young Adult, Single Adult, so forht and so on. Mormons
are a World Wide Church and are part of the Mainstream. Some places it trickles
but some place Religion Trickles also, but its there.
@RAB"Personally, i think it was a misunderstanding and that Joseph
Smith only meant to say that priesthood authority should not be given to blacks
who are still slaves subject to another person's will."God
woudn't let such critical mistakes hang around 120 years in a church if it
had a direct line to God.
It does not matter in the least who "mainstreams" what. People of faith
retain their beliefs for many different reasons, as evidenced by statements
here. My pioneer grandparents were the most dedicated, faithful, loving people
you could find on this earth. I do not share their religious beliefs, but I am
proud of my heritage. They taught us to study God's Word, ask Him for the
answers, and then remain true to what He told us, because Judgment Day will be
solely between us and our God.They were heart-broken, as was my
family, when I did read all of God's Word and discovered a different truth.
But that didn't stop the love, the mutual prayers, or our DNA. We respect
each other's convictions, and it will never matter what some social,
ecclesiastical or media body declares about mainstream religion.But
the article was interesting. It reveals what academics still don't get
about religious believers. No "Shock and Awe" has converted one
Taliban, terrorist, or fanatic. The human will is not predictable.Conversely, no Bible-only believers will ever accept a Bible-Plus theology.
Not in two more millenia either..
Brother Chuck Schroeder "ALL Mormons really want recognition as
a mainstream religion." Please speak for yourself.
@Kith;All of the 12 and the Councilors to the President of the
Church (note: that is his real title) are ordained "prophets, seers and
revelators". Each one of them, not just the "president". (It
wasn't until David O. McKay's time that the word "prophet"
came into use for the President of the LDS Church, prior to that it ALWAYS
referred to Joseph Smith.
seems that every time I read an article, there is bashing of some sort. I live
in the mission field, I do want to be seen as different, but it is hard on the
kids, so sometimes I would like to see us mainstreamed. My kids and grandkids
wouldn't have to be afraid cause the teachers would say things about their
faith. I am a convert. Those of you who live where there are a lot of LDS take
our faith for granted. When there is only a hundred members within 50 miles you
The Mormon faith isn't the only one that struggles with deciding
what's doctrine and what's opinion. For instance, every Bible
translation I've seen states very clearly that women should not speak in
church. And yet, how many denominations actually hold that as doctrine?
Actually, I'd begin to worry if 'mainline' denominations
considered the LDS Church just another member of the club. America has become a
moral wasteland on their watch; I don't want their recognition, and I was a
Protestant for 44 years. Let them have their prosperity theology,
scandals, private jets and lavish lifestyle, and the growing obsession with
sex-related sermons. The one, true Church suits me just fine.
@ skepticWrong. Mormons are as well-educated and open-minded as
anyone. The majority of so-called “history” is not backed up with
indisputable evidence. If you are predisposed to either defy or support the
church, you can find ample “history” to support your assumptions. It
is much better to judge Mormons by their current beliefs.@Brahmabull
and DonPWrong. All prophets are first and foremost human beings.
They are no more required to be infallible than you are. The difference is that
prophets were called of God because of their qualifications the best available
spokesmen for God. We therefore can almost always trust their words over the
words of the average non-prophet. Yet, they can still err, be misunderstood, or
allow their feelings and opinions to mix with what the lord wants them to say.
YOU therefore, will never be released from YOUR responsibility to be spiritually
receptive to God’s verification of their words. @ A
scientistWrong. The quoted scripture is talking about judgment day
for each individual—not some future day of universal intolerance. It is
merely a plea for people to not reject God.
@ als AtheistWrong. Just because Latter Day Saints believe their
church is the true one, does not mean that they expect others to recognize them
as such. Most are surprised that other people do not think the same about their
own religions. I know I couldn't live that way. But you can go right
ahead and not believe whatever you want.@ no fit in SGWrong. Scriptures and teachings towards blacks has not changed. All that has
changed is the speculation as to why the Lord apparently delayed giving the
priesthood to black men. Personally, i think it was a misunderstanding and that
Joseph Smith only meant to say that priesthood authority should not be given to
blacks who are still slaves subject to another person's will. Church
members now worry and fear that the delay was just prejudice, but i was around
in the 60s and 70s and I was always taught to love black people as much as
anyone else, that they were equal to any white man, and that the lord would one
day give them the priesthood. We saw the delay as God's will--not
A Scientist: According to D&C 1:14, those who do not believe in
Mormonism will not be tolerated at all:"...the day cometh that
they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of his servants,
neither give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles, shall be cut off
from among the people;"Hmm well that means they will be cut off
of from His people. In truth they have already cut them selves off by that
point. Why would this even matter to someone not LDS? Cut off does not mean
shunned by the way. It just means no longer counted in membership.
DNews, and Utah's members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints who view Mitt Romney's successful campaign for the Republican
presidential nomination as a significant step toward acceptance of the church as
a mainstream American religion.ALL Mormons really want recognition
as a mainstream religion.Tell me something new.
My sense is, mainstream is where the recognition and political power is, and yes
that's where the organisation wants to go, whether or not individual
members feel that way. That's why they've worked so hard behind the
scenes to rebrand.
Regardless what individual members believe, or what the Church emphasizes right
now, the problem is with the Church's official, scriptural vision of the
future.According to D&C 1:14, those who do not believe in
Mormonism will not be tolerated at all:"...the day cometh that
they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of his servants,
neither give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles, shall be cut off
from among the people;"And foreshadows of that intolerance are
already manifest in the cultural attitudes I see among LDS people almost every
day. It comes across as an "ethnocentrism", but also as an
"arrogance". It is really off-putting.
Re; Regis, But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a
*peculiar people…(1Peter 2:9 KJV) “ The Priesthood of the
believer”, Luther’s verse to the RCC during the reformation.But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s
special possession..(1Peter 2:9 NIV) (*peripoiesis,406,possession).To: LDS Liberal, There are elements of Gnosticism in the LDS faith that I
like. I read the Gnostics Nag Hammadi, specifically the Gospel's of
Thomas. The Gospel of Thomas is not really a Gospel(euangelion)but a list
of sayings. Do you believe saying(logos) 114, Simon Peter said to them let Mary
leave us for women are not worthy of life…? There are elements of
Gnosticism in the LDS faith. True,The Colossian Heresy: Do not handle! Do
not taste! Do not touch!”? These rules, which have to do with things that
are all destined to perish with use, are based on merely human commands and
teachings. Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their
self-imposed worship, their false humility…(Col 2:21-23)W of W.
What does it even mean to be mainstream? We certainly are not going to give up
our restoration doctrines, or our priesthood authority, or lower the standard
for admittance into our temples. We are not going to ever side with the Trinity
declarations of the Nicean Creed, and we are never going to stop baptizing for
and in behalf of the deceased of our progenitors. But we will continue to grow
and gain momentum until we fill the earth. Maybe then we will be mainstream, but
not much earlier.Those who oppose us, even in this newspaper comment
board, are never going to think we are Christians. If that is what they are,
then being a modern-day Christian loses some of its appeal anyway. But we will
continue to live Christian lives, practice Christian virtues, pray to the father
in the name of the Son, and follow the example of our Savior Jesus Christ, all
the while attracting those of like values. I am getting used to being peculiar.
Why change now?
But, Sasha Pachev, do we have a right to do "some correction of the
"stream" which is what we are trying to do" as you say, and force
those who are not with us to be with us against their will? To me, in my view,
that smacks of Lucifer's plan in the Preexistence, which Heavenly Father
did not accept. We can't force our fellowman to take our path, in order for
us to be mainstream. We have to allow for choices, whether we like them or not,
whether they are in line with our doctrine or not, in order to allow others to
choose to follow us. True? Even our hymns sing of these things.
I imagine some do, those who aren't comfortable with not fitting in, or who
don't like being "different", perhaps, or those who just want to be
popular and are afraid of what others will think of their strange religion. And
there are some who are comfortable in their own skins and feel they have nothing
to prove, as long as they are at peace with their God and with themselves. There
are the people like me, who are in the last category and also a little strange,
who really couldn't care less what anyone thinks anyway...lol...and march
to their own drumbeat, who are happy with what they have and are willing to
share it with the first person who wants to know. So Mormons--LDS folk come in
all flavors, and this article is a little useless other than to point that out.
Being "mainstream" is good, if the "stream" is flowing in the
right direction. If we can become "mainstream" without turning away from
the true doctrine of Christ, that is great. In our world today it would require
some correction of the "stream" which is what we are trying to do.
The desire of Mormons to be loved and embraced by the rest of the world reminds
me of Sally Field at the Academy Awards: "You like me! You really like
me!" Kind of silly, you know.Jesus clearly told his followers
that they would always be looked upon as peculiar. He taught that they should
rejoice and be glad when they were persecuted and hated by others, just as he
was persecuted and hated.Mormons ought to take some pride in being
looked upon as odd, or different, or "a cult." Who cares if the Rev.
Jeffress doesn't think we are in the mainstream of Christianity? That was
the exact criticism of the Jews when Christ was on the earth, that he taught new
and different doctrines that didn't jive with the accepted teachings of the
As the Buddy Holly song goes; "That'll be the Day".
@Brahmabull"I mean it seems rediculous that god would say to do
something, then later say wait now don't do it"Do you have
kids? When they were young, did you tell them they couldn't cross the
street alone? Then when they got older, did you change that so it was OK?Changing your mind did not make you a bad parent, and at neither time
were you wrong! You were simply applying the rules based on the child's
aptitude, ability, judgment, and the circumstances they were living in
(you'd be more apt to apply that rule if you lived on a busy street instead
of a one-lane dirt road). When the child's maturity and/or circumstances
changed, that rule was no longer necessary so you got rid of it.That's how God is with us: He gives us rules based on our aptitude,
ability, judgment, and circumstances. It doesn't make him fallible and it
doesn't make the prophets wrong - it just means he adapts the rules
depending on internal and external factors.
DunedainIs it then possible that god didn't tell them to do it
at all? I mean it seems rediculous that god would say to do something, then
later say wait now don't do it. Do this, now stop, now do that, now stop. I
don't think god cares about all of these little things. I think he cares
about how we treat others, that is what every commandment comes back to. Not how
much money I pay in tithes, not how many times I step into a building on
sundays, not how many times I read the words(opinions) of prophets in the
scriptures from thousands of years ago, in a land not near here, in a culture
not close to mine. I don't think he cares if I smoke or gamble or have
facial hair. Point is, maybe it is the people that are just THINKING god told
them to do something. Did not Warren Jeffs claim that god told him to do what he
did? Anybody can say that.
@Brahma, Polygamy is not a "doctrine". It has nothing to do with the
Faith, Repentance, Baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost or any part of the
Atonement. Like circumcision in the New Testament, it was a covenant and
God-given practice that existed for a purpose for a given time. There are really
only a few things that are "core" to our beliefs that are consistent
throughout history. Woodruff et al were being faithful to a commandment at the
time, then told to change. Some people have a problem with change.
It's part of Revelation. I would have more of a problem if some things
couldn't change with our needs. Do you ever change practices in your
household? How do you explain to your kids?
DonP, It is my understanding that only the prophet may speak words
There is little question to a person who espouses a religion that they do so
because of what they gain from that religion. If they stop "gaining,"
most will leave that religion unless they feel some compelling reason to stay
(i.e., they seem value for their children, business opportunities, etc.).
Sometimes they depart for another religion, sometimes they simply disavow all
religion. It runs the gamut. We've seem plenty of examples of those who
come and go in their religiosity and certainly this is the case in Mormonism.
For me personally the value of "Mormonism" is that it gives
me the highest value, the greatest opportunities to serve, the greatest
potential for blessings. It allows me to see further, to feel deeper, etc.
Others, of course, don't share this opinion. I don't fault them for
there position just as I don't care if they fault me for mine. I have no
doubts about my beliefs. I am certainly far from anything "perfect," but
I firmly believe that Christ commanded us to "be perfect." Mormonism
gives me the best opportunity for achieving "perfection," which I know I
will never achieve in this life.
In the world, not of the world.
@als Atheist"We have seen such Dominionist belief systems
throughout history. It never turns out well for those who don't believe the
same way."religion does not have a corner on intolerance or
atrocity. Millions of people living in the Soviet Union under Stalin's
regime were killed or sent to horrible work camps because of their political
beliefs. State not religious leaders killed them.
The more pertinat question should be, "Why would we want to be mainstream??
Wally WestSLC, UT@ LDS Liberal 12:10 p.m. May 23, 2012There are elements of Gnosticism in the LDS faith that I like.========== Agreed.That was what got me going in the 1st
place.I read the Gnostics Nag Hammadi - specifically the
Gospel's of Mary, Thomas, and Philip -- And remembered D&C
91:1 1 Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you concerning the
Apocrypha—There are many things contained therein that are true, and it is
mostly translated correctly; 4 Therefore, whoso readeth it, let him
understand, for the Spirit manifesteth truth;“Mormonism”
includes all truth. There is no truth but what belongs to the gospel. ~ Brigham
YoungWhich is why we have been given that most wonderful gift of
Holy Ghost - to discern ALL truth.And the truth shall set you
The Jews practiced circumcision because God through his prophets told them to do
so. Then Christ and his Apostles showed up and told them that it was God's
will that they no longer follow that law. It doesn't invalidate what was
previously said by the Prophets it just means that God has revealed something
new to his people. Polygamy is the same thing.
@ LDS Liberal 12:10 p.m. May 23, 2012There are elements of
Gnosticism in the LDS faith that I like.
I feel like half the people who want to attack the church's view on whether
or not what a prophet says is doctrine have a false assumption of what a prophet
is. It seems that they think that by our definition a prophet, since he can
speak for God, is infallible or that he is perfect. We've never claimed
that and to my knowledge I don't think that the scriptures, ours of those
accepted by all Christians, teach that. Moses forgot to circumcise some of his
sons if I remember right, Peter denied the Christ. Those things don't
diminish their callings as a Prophet or an Apostle it just means that they were
human. If they would take away their assumption of Prophet=Perfect then there
doesn't appear to be the contradiction of saying that sometimes a prophet
just says something and sometimes he's officially speaking for the Lord.
eastcoastcoug - Ok, it is fairly common stuff. Polygamy was a doctrine revealed
to Joseph Smith, and was practiced because it was doctrinal (see doctrine and
covenants)"We will not end the practice of plural marriage until
the coming of the Son of Man". (Wilford Woorduff, manti temple
dedication)"Though I go to prison, God will not change his law
of celestial marriage. But the man, the people, the nation, that oppose and
fight against this doctrine and the Church of God, will be overthrown."
(Lorenzo Snow in historical record)Gordon B. Hinckley stated in the
Larry King interview: "I condemn it, yes, as a practice, because I think it
is not doctrinal." Clearly it was not only a teaching, but a
doctrine. A practiced doctrine. Then you have president Hinckley who states that
it is NOT DOCTRINE. This is just one of many examples.
Mainstreaming makes missionary work somewhat easier, and mitigates some
obstacles to practicing one's faith. Utahans get unscheduled Monday nights,
Sabbath-observant neighbors, meetinghouses within walking distance,
homework-free youth nights, and high community expectations about behavior. None
of that necessarily strengthens the soul. But statistically, it does increase
religious participation. So one supposes, with a lukewarm affirmation, that on
the whole, it's more or less a good thing. Ultimately, though, it
doesn't matter, and obsessively tracking worldly acceptance levels is a
form of idol worship -- one God probably doesn't approve of.
For me, I want to be respected and give respect to others. This does not always
mean that I will agree with everyone and that everyone will agree with me. If
being "mainstream" is defined as respect, I believe LDS members seek
that very much. However, if it is defined as fitting in with the rest of
Christian theology which differs from the LDS church, then I for one do not
desire it. @no fit in SGI actually like the topic of LDS
doctrine outside Utah. From various experiences, especially with an internship
in Florida and now moving to Connecticut since graduating school here, I have
decided those topics are less controversial then they first seem. I was
surprised how many questions I was asked (probably because of Romney) but the
outcome was always one of mutual respect.
‘Do Mormons really want recognition as a 'mainstream'
religion?’================== No, absolutely
not.The more mainstream we become, the more watered down our
religion becomes.We will loose most of our "Plain and
Precious" truths that make us unique.As a Mormon, I
consider myself a Christian, Jew, Muslim, Gnostic, Wiccan, and Shaman - all of
it.All truth can be circumscribed into one great whole.I
will not give any of it up for all the "mainstreaming" in the world.
The answer is No. Our beliefs in the Godhead, the nature of our Savior, the
Preexistence, Life after death, the Priesthood, work for the dead, our
opportunity to become exalted, etc. is way different from 'Mainstream
religions'. If we attempt to become mainstream we would have to give up
some of our beliefs and then we would not be who we are.A devout disciple
of Christ and member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Name a conflicting statement, Brahma. Many of us would like to know what
you're talking about...
"Not every statement made by a church leader, past or present, necessarily
constitutes doctrine. A single statement made by a single leader on a single
occasion often represents a personal, though well-considered, opinion, but is
not meant to be officially binding for the whole church."Honestly, this baffles me, an non-Mormon.It seems with the benefit
of time, it is so easy now to sift through and identify all those times in the
distant past LDS prophets were "representing a personal opinion."But assuming today's prophets are no more perfect than, say,
Brigham Young, can anyone point to anything a current prophet has recently said
that is also "a personal opinion"?It seems to me Latter-day
Saints regard every word spoken by the current prophets to be doctrine. Will
some of those words be re-characterized in the future as "opinion"? Is
it possible--just possible that President Packer's comments on gays might
be regarded as such some day?
Donp - no, unfortunately that is not still a valid teaching. Prophets words are
not doctrine, they used to be because, you know, they are prophets, right? But
now because all of the contradicting statements made by prophets they have
labeled them all opinion. So the big question is, what is the need for a prophet
if what they say is only opinion. "Follow the Prophet" would be invalid,
as what they say is only a suggestion. It all doesn't make sense.
My, my, what a list of malcontents that seem to be waiting to pounce on the
blogs with every article on the Church. I feel most sorry for the ones who live
in Utah and feel trapped. My experience is that organizations of all
kinds (right down to family size) have members that don't agree with the
values or the way those values are being practiced. However, I see far more
willingness in the LDS Church to let people choose whether to believe and join
according to their own wishes. However, there are those who get in (or who are
born inside) that want out or want to change it. For those, I just say "do
it". But stop carping about whether or not the rest of us who remain
faithful are blind or of low IQ. As for the article, most of us
welcome the more serious examination and discussion (surprised, doubters?).
I've often thought that many of our doctrines and beliefs as practiced,
would go down well with most thoughtful and moral people of the world. Truth
exists independent and there are many out there who seek it.
I don't get it either.... the Mormon "Articles of
Faith" even says: "#11 We claim the privilege of worshiping
Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men
the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may." We believe this and so if everybody else would believe that too... the
haggling with anybody's belief's should stop... Right?
I was taken somewhat aback by the lack of reference to the Ensign, especially
the conference editions, as being official doctrine. I have been taught that the
words of the General Authorities, spoken in conference, especially the words of
the the President, are considered scripture. Is that teaching still valid?
It shouldn't matter what Mormons want or don't want. Its
Christ's church. Do what HE wants.
There may be some merit to the old saying that: familiarity breeds contempt.
And it seems the more one becomes familiar with Mormon history, doctrine and
political culture the more confusing and questionable it becomes. It seems the
true believing Mormons compensate for this by closing their minds to reality and
going along with the church current that flows through a some what closed
society of church authority dominance.
I swear, I just can't believe the way every time an LDS-oriented article
appears there always are those who take the opportunity to spew their own
emotional problems concerning the Church whether it is relevant or not. Do they
really think they are convincing anyone? Honestly, this is sad.
I hadn't thought about some of the points raised. Coming from a United
Methodist background that carries a strong belief that "it doesn't
matter what denomination you belong to" made the concept of joining another
church (the LDS church) much easier since I don't think any church is
"the true church". Of course it also made it easier for me to leave the
LDS church and assume that whenever I do find someone to marry odds are
I'll just join her church to make things easier.
I don't think we want to be considered "mainstream." We take great
pride (I'll use the word pride for lack of a better word) in the fact that
we are a "peculiar" people. But that doesn't mean "weird."
We are regular, normal people who happen to profess knowledge of the
restoration of Christ's true Church. We want that message to be spread far
and wide. But, we want it made clear that we are unique in the world as a faith
and as a people. We are not exactly "mainstream."
Many Mormons are kind people. However, some are a bit pushy. When one leaves the
state, it is sometimes beneficial to refrain from discussing the LDS religion.
It leads to the standard, uncomfortable questions about the Celestial Plural
Marriage(polygamy) thing in their question" Well, how many wives do you
have"? Also, Utah is unique in that there are not as many minorities. This
leads to the questions, "Why don't Mormons like Blacks, didn't
they ban them from their Church"?Should a missionary ask these people
to read the scriptures explaining this... they must be told to read
"newer" scriptures with explanations of why "unpopular answers"
are in the "older" scriptures. People who attended LDS Sunday
School, Relief Society and Priesthood classes in 1970 will hear a world of
difference their now. My own children do not believe me concerning LDS writings,
until I take out the 1960-1970 publications and Scriptures and show them. This may be causing reluctance for those who are considering joining the LDS
Church and in a lesser area, voting for Mitt Romney, an LDS church member.
The simple answer to this headline questions is "No".Instead, Mormons want recognition as the "one and only true and living
Church on the face of the whole earth with which God is well-pleased".They want recognition as the "...the kingdom of God on the earth,
but is at the present limited to an ecclesiastical kingdom. During the
millennial era, the kingdom of God will be both political and ecclesiastical,
and will have worldwide jurisdiction in political realms when the Lord has made
'a full end of all nations' (D&C 87: 6)." (LDS Bible
Dictionary).We have seen such Dominionist belief systems throughout
history. It never turns out well for those who don't believe the same way.