Love to see Mormons explaining themselves, so many of them know the scriptures
so well,many want the same thing this article is giving us, peace.But something is missing here. I wonder if anyone noticed that.Where did you, oh Mormon Believer, come from in the first place.Was it
conversion ? Did you try out a new road, that you got used to ?Did you
notice your understanding scriptures was an expansion of grace ?Have
you not forgotten, that anyone of a different faith is a child of God,that
needs to grow on its own pace ? How come you cannot take people to see the warm
hearted LDS members, but focus on doctrine at first ?Being an LDS member
is never superior; feelings might be super.You cannot declare the
gospel by your mind into people's mind,they need to find doors to
understand Mormons. That is never a discussion on grounds of religion, it is
about life.The topic here is religion, but my topic is more
"water/bread" for all men. Not talking it.We are all children of
God. (Atheists and Believers) Case closed.
Re: cassandove's comment: "In any case, I don't WANT to be
accepted by Protestantism; there is nothing that Protestantism can give me that
brings me closer to my Heavenly Father or to my Savior."This is
the EXACT attitude that drove my wife out of the LDS Church and into evangelical
Christianity. That attitude is pervasive in the LDS Church, and I heard it
preached in the LDS pulpit many a Sunday while we were dating. Comically, many
of those who utter it - often in the very next breath - complain that
"Christians won't accept us, even though we believe the same things
they do."You can't have it both ways, friends. If you
believe that Joseph Smith restored the Gospel that utterly disappeared from the
earth for 1500 years, and all those creeds and beliefs held during that period
(and now) are corrupt and an abomination (as Joseph Smith said), then you ought
to stop bellyaching about the fact that Christians take your prophet at his
word. They seem to take his words more seriously than you do. Which is another
thing that drove my wife out of the LDS church.
"We need to look out for the religious rights and freedoms of all people.
When we defend the rights of others, we are also defending our own
rights."Absolutely right. When we stick up for the rights for
others we are protecting our rights. If one of us is oppressed then we are all
RE: EternalPerspectivei: Defending faith means boldly declaring all God has
revealed to a person?…In your hearts honor Christ(not JS) the
Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a Defense…(1 Peter 3:15).
E.G…. The theme of the Bible is Jesus’ blood covering
our sins”. It unites the Bible as a whole, in a way inconceivable if it
were a human invention. The impossibility of freedom from sin through sacrifice
shows us the true meaning of what Jesus did on the cross. When God
told Abraham to sacrifice Isaac, we see a drama played out that allows us to see
the sort of plan that God has for us: Abraham (God) would give his son (JesusThe
reason the O. T sacrifices could not save was due to the character of the blood
that was shed. The blood being shed was animal blood. However, sin had been
introduced into the world by man, Rom. 5:12. Therefore, salvation
was dependent on the sacrifice of an innocent man. Jesus went to Calvary as
the Lamb of God, the blood He shed was pure, precious sinless blood, 1 Pet.
There is a GREAT difference between declaring belief and inviting thoughtful
pondering, versus a "holier than thou" condescending tone and words.
One CAN affirm belief without compromising benevolent intent for
God's children whom Jesus commanded to love and forgive. The degree
someone is not offended determines their willingness to be humble and learn from
others.Defending faith means boldly declaring all God has revealed
to a person, knowing good will come despite any resultant personal attacks or
rejection. Jesus has said to fear God and not man.Keeping
one's testimony of God's Spirit quiet for the sake of fearing offense
is not what Jesus taught His disciples. He told them, "Go ye therefore, and
teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and
of the Holy Ghost".The Mormon claim that the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter Day Saints is Christ's Church restored by His Priesthood
authority is either utter blasphemy as some creedal and reformation Christians
claim, or it is true. If true, then as Jesus said, "But if I cast out
devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you".
And, I might add, it's easy to pray for your enemies in a sanctimonious
manner while publicly demeaning them. Well did Jesus castigate the Pharisees
for such "you're evil and we're better than you" preaching.
How much more difficult to actually put your arms around your supposed enemies
and display love - while holding true to your convictions - rather than give the
concept of love mere lip service. How much better to invite than to guilt trip.
A generation of vipers "is" as a generation of vipers "does,"
and in my estimation your M.O. is much more similar to the Pharisees than anyone
who participates in celebrations of common ground, brotherhood, and love. If
defending your faith requires mean-spirited contention, then you can keep it.
DSB, It is one thing to pray for your enemies and minister to them, and it is
another thing to pander to them and tell them that "Evangelicals" have
collectively "sinned against our Mormon brothers." What happens when
many of us who are no longer members of the LDS church concur that the majority
of the Evangelical apologists have got it right? Gone are the days of Calvin
and Luther who while praying for the Romanists, pulled out all the stops in
taking a stand against their theology. I guess Jesus was also wrong when he
called the Pharisees a "generation of vipers" and "children of the
Devil." I guess Paul was wrong in Galatians 2 to talk of "false
brothers" and hypocrites in standing for the principle of sola gratia.
Words and theology still have meaning for me. Part of being a Confessional
Christian is standing up for your doctrine. Just as a Mormon would defend tooth
and nail the Articles of Faith and their meaning, so should a Creedal
Protestant. We can understand each others' positions with having to
compromise the integrity of our respective theologies.
@elchupacabrasLet me get this straight.Because Dr. Mouw
is meek,Because he is a peacemaker,Because he loves and prays for
his (doctrinal) enemies,Because he agrees with his adversaries whiles in
the way,Because he does unto others as he would like to have done unto
himself,Because he associates with those he perceives are not whole but
need a physician, Dr. Mouw therefore does not represent the majority
of people attempting to minister to LDS people? If true, that's a sad
commentary on the majority of those people. I must have missed the
part where Dr. Mouw denies any of the Reformation theology you cited. It takes a
big, and very Christlike man, to hold to one's convictions while offering
love to those who disagree. Maybe one day the majority of people attempting to
minister to LDS people will walk the higher road taken by Dr. Mouw.
As an ex-Mormon Reformed Protestant Christian, let me say that Mr. Mouw does not
represent the majority those of us who work in ministry to the LDS people. He
fails to understand that Jesus is a created being in Mormonism (see Abraham 3),
and that is the same mistake that Arius committed in the 3rd Century. Mr. Mouw
seems to also forget that LDS teachings do not support sola gratia (after all
they can do), sola fide (Article of Faith-- saved by laws and ordninances),
solus christus (one must have a testimony of Joseph Smith), sola scriptura(how
many extra books), and solo deo gloria (the glory is for man to be exalted). I
love the LDS people, but the theology of Mormonism is simply very different from
that of theology of the Reformation, which is supposedly the theology of Mr.
Joseph Smith pondered what also created the reformation movements. The Bible
alone cannot definitively answer doctrinal questions. Every book of
the Bible was written through a living prophet who had authority from God to
build up His kingdom and is nothing less than the spirit of revelation.If the theme of the Bible is revelation, a living prophet, and Priesthood
authority, why do so many people do as the Pharisees and only follow dead
prophets and ancient scriptures while denying the spirit of revelation in the
present day? How are the Pharisees any different than many today that say the
Bible is the ONLY word of God while simultaneously denying those patterns
now?If God is unchangeable, how could works of the Bible not exist
anymore on the earth? Could it be the many churches of Christianity have long
sought to hide the lack of God's authority to protect their craft by saying
God has done His work? Could it be the world was not ready for thousands of
years to receive that authority again because it lacked faith?Wouldn’t revelation be desperately needed to build up Christ’s
Church again as preparation for His return?
Back to the article, more time should be spent by all sides studying their
friend's actual theology. No one said we can't work together in our
communities and trying to make this "a better world".But
with regards to the next world, Biblical purists do not believe in fanciful
ruminations, Masonic priesthood oaths, or some new revelation that there is no
real hell. We prefer to take Christ at His word, thank you.We'll keep warning the world and sending them to His original document,
all due respect to Dr. Mouw, the Jesus Seminar, and all else who seek to focus
on religious freedoms of cults, anti-Christian religions and any newcomer who
translates via hat-looking.That is the problem with Dr. Mouw's
refusal to pour the full spotlight on every, single aspect and claim of Joseph
Smith. As several LDS prophets have repeated: "The entirety of Mormon
claims stand or fall on the claims of Joseph Smith."
MrPlate,We have no animosity toward the members of the LDS church.
We only have animosity toward the many false doctrines and heretical practices
of the LDS. If and only if you repent of all these false doctrines and
heretical practices someday, and are baptized into the true church, then and
only then will we become brothers.(Final post - 4 post rule).
Michigander: in your opinion. The FLDS and RLDS off-shoots follow true Joseph
Smith doctrines and writings far more closely than the SLC off-shoot. The
Restored Gospel has gotten restored and reversed a few times since 1830,
hasn't it?The off-shoot that moved furthest from JS has the
money, real estate holdings and enrollment numbers. The ones that remained
faithful to D&C 132 and Joseph's signature doctrine (which brought the
bulk of persecution Mormons' way), still sufffer social stigma and
theological ignoring from even the SLC group.So while it's an
In-House debate for all the FLDS. RLDS and LDS, to Biblical purists it
doesn't come close on any theological level. We just keep breaking off
from all denominations that add extra-Biblical doctrines and new
salvation/heaven/priesthood to God's original, perfect Document.
@Michigander - your latest post appeared after I submitted my most recent post,
and I acknowledge and respect your non-Catholic origins. Still, DUPDaze, the
odds were heavily in my favor of being correct.But, Michigander, our
common origins and belief in the prophetic calling of Joseph Smith and the
truthfulness of the Book of Mormon should make of us brothers. Your calling the
LDS Church a "heretical sect" in comparison to your sect, is rather
comical considering the proportional disparity of the two groups. I doubt
there's much animosity toward your church by members of the LDS faith, even
among those who are aware of it. I recommend you embrace our commonalities, as
we probably have many more of them with each other than we do with Catholics or
Protestants, or Coptics for the sake of DUPDaze.
@MichiganderYour earlier post today: "There is no appeasement
with a heretical sect. None."Your next post says you're a
member of a sect originating from Joseph Smith, that has a membership of
probably less than 15,000. It must be lonely indeed to incur disfavor from all
of Joseph Smith's detractors, and to have such disdain for your closest
spiritual cousins. In your religion, who WOULD you engage in "appeasement
with?"@DUPDaze - what LDS people are not owning our doctrine?
Where did Satan come from? According to Isaiah, Satan was the "Son of the
Morning" who fell from Heaven. Don't you believe God created
everything in Heaven? If Jesus is God's son, and God created Satan, why is
it so far-fetched to say they are brothers on some level? Are there really LDS
members who deny or hide from this doctrine?I don't understand
the big blasphemy. You realize Cain and Abel were brothers too, right? Is it
insulting to Abel to say he and Cain were brothers?And BTW, being a
peacemaker and showing love toward your enemies are Biblical mandates.
No, DUPDaze, I never said "All Christianity" split from Catholicism.
Since I already know that, I very clearly, specifically, and intentionally said
"your religion ALMOST CERTAINLY split off from Catholicism." (Emphasis
added). Maybe you can give us all the statistics showing that Anabaptists,
Coptics, and ancient-world Christians comprise a substantial segment of American
Christians today, who are also as vehemently opposed to Mormons as Michigander
seems to be, and thus negate my near certainty about the origin of his religion.
Better yet, if Michigander does not belong to a traditional Protestant religion
that originally split from Catholicism or another Protestant sect, maybe he
should tell us himself.
MrPlate,I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ (WHQ:
Monongahela, PA), the only true succession of the Restored Gospel.
No, MrPlate- All Christianity did not split off from the Roman See. Despite
their claims or yours. Anabaptists, Coptic Orthodox, several other Orthodox
groups and a bunch of non-Catholic groups practiced all through the ancient
world. You just have to go outside to bonafide scholarship.
@Michigander - I assume you're referring to the LDS religion. Of which
religion are you? I ask, because unless you're Catholic, then your
religion almost certainly split off from Catholicism. And, as you probably
know, Catholicism considers every separationist branch to be a heretical sect,
for which there can be no appeasement. None.1000 years ago you may
have been burned at the stake for your heresy. I suspect you hope the Catholics
today would extend brotherly love and understanding despite your differences. I
hope that's not too much for LDS members to expect from you and your fellow
believers as well. High praise to Dr. Mouw for living and encouraging Christian
donn wrote: "No one has ever seen God. The only one, himself God…(
John 1:18(NIV)."Apparently the writer of the gospel of John
forgot about Adam and Eve, who, according to the BIBLE, were in the presence of
the Lord God (KJV Genesis 3). Either that, or the writer of John doesn't
mean what Donn thinks he means.How could the writer of John mean
what Donn thinks he means; especially, since God (i.e. Jesus) was on the earth
for 33 years before His crucifixion, where lots of people saw Him?
Omitted in posts thus far, is that there are tons of accurate sites, authors,
quotes on the entire and accurate documentation of LDS history, doctrines,
revelations, doctrinal reversals, and current theology and practices.Is it okay for non-LDS Christians to disagree with (accurate/current) LDS
doctrinal theology, while joining them in charity and disaster relief?As a Bible-only evangelical, (i.e. Not the liberal, wishy-wash,
reinvent-it-as-we-go kind), my side exposes all unbiblical attempts to co-opt
Jesus' original message and NT Gospel from our God's pure Word. Dr.
Mouw has some lofty goals that I agree should be enforced in every democracy.
But let's be clear that they are not Biblical mandates.As a
former Mormon, fully proud of my pioneer heritage and awesome family, I see a
strange imbalance in my LDS family, friends and many posts here of complaining
about "persecution" while refusing ownership of their actual doctrines.
Example: Huckabee's accurate statement about Romney's belief that
Jesus and Lucifer are spirit brothers. No ownership or explanation came from
any LDS side that clarified, denied or confirmed this 183 year-held current
doctrine...Honesty foremost in dialogue, please.
Let's set the record straight and deal solely in facts vis-á-vis the
huge theological chasms that exist within "Christianity" itself. It has
been correctly posted that the divide runs deep far prior to 1830. We share a
love for Jesus and reaching out to the poor and needy in every denomination.Let's set the record straight and stop throwing the blame blanket
too wide: There are accurate Internet sites, books and ex-Mormon (Biblical)
Christian seminars/speakers who have no ill will or incorrect data on LDS
doctrine and history.I agree with Dr. Mouw that reasoned dialogue
will help, but only when LDS are fully transparent about their claims for the
reason of their very existence: Restoration due to the complete apostacy of the
entirety of Christianity. It's called "drawing first blood",
euphemistically.This means that every existing Christian
denomination should respond to the attack on their authority, "wrong"
priesthood and non-eternal sacraments and ordinances, per JS:1- Own
your prophets' statements with Joseph Smith's original premise that
"all their professors are corrupt"; ditto "their Bible".2-
No other church has the correct authority. Period.Then we can talk.
There is no appeasement with a heretical sect. None.
@PJ in WI--I grew up Presbyterian, memorized the Apostle's Creed and
recited it weekly. I remember being concerned as a boy that I was professing
belief in the "holy catholic church", since I was not a Roman Catholic.
Our pastor explained to me that it merely meant the universal church founded by
the Savior when He was on the earth. That interpretation in confirmed by
dictionaries contemporary to the Apostle's Creed's translation into
English.I've now been a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints for 44 years, and can't think of anything in the
Apostle's Creed that I don't believe wholeheartedly. If you believe
there are discrepancies with LDS beliefs, I suggest you have some grave
misunderstandings of those beliefs.
RE: "Pops Jesus was born of Mary.'True, but The
“PALE” of Christianity believes the birth of Jesus was a unique
miracle by the Holy Ghost."The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and
the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing
which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.(Luke 1:35). But,The Birth of the Savior was a natural act as are our children; it was
the result of a natural action He partook of flesh …( Jof D 8:115)RE: Maclouie, describes a god with a multiple personality complex. You
agree with; The (Jof D 8:199)”With a regard to true theology , a
more ignorant people never lived than the present so-called Christian world .Tertullian (c. 160 – c. 225 AD), used the term Trinity (Latin,
trinitas), giving the oldest extant formal exposition of a Trinitarian theology.
Other Latin formulations that first appear in his work are "three Persons,
one Substance" Latin "tres Personae, una Substantia".3
persons one God. "one in substance”. .., the express image of his
person( Greek 5287,hypostasis substance, being).Hebrews 1:3.
fwiw, as an LDS member, I've always been open to the commonalities and
friendships with evangelical christians. LDS leadership has been open and
encouraging about fostering positive relations for... well...at least since as
long as I've been alive. We've been saying for years that we love and
adore Jesus Christ as redeemer and Savior of the world. I guess my point is that
this fostering openness thing is almost entirely upon the evangelicals and their
willingness to be honest about the LDS people, rather than villifying them.
it's heartening to see there are those realizing the last nearly 200 years
of persecution is misplaced and wrongheaded.
“Rockyrd” and “Thinkin\' Man” stated truths
important to us Mormons. Yet, should we fail to affirm our testimony of the
latter day work of the Lord?Of the man casing out devils in Jesus
name, the Savior said, "for he that is not against us is for us". So,
we must consider this also with Christian brothers and sisters not of our
faith.But, is compromise the only means to gain strength in the
common fight against persecutors of Christianity? I think not as we ought to
first distinguish the unique belief that the Lord did in reality restore His
Church through the prophet Joseph Smith. We should affirm how God’s
unchangeable pattern of calling prophets by revelation to build up His kingdom
on the earth is operative today.When we lean only on Christian
commonalities for the sake of making peace with other churches, our unique
message of the long prophesized restoration becomes distilled. As the
Lord’s covenant people of the last dispensation, we have great
responsibility to bring souls unto Christ. But, in my experience, this happens
best when we follow the Holy Ghost in boldly declaring the truth.
Yes, Dr. Mouw, we have "a lot to talk about": Your misunderstanding of
Biblical mandate, what our earthly call is, and an accurate understanding of
Mormon Doctrine- current day.No where did our Savior Jesus call us
to fight for religious equality. He did tell us to love people, respect them,
and if we love Him and the lost, to preach The Truth to them- not to sing around
the campfire and become political activists. If people have spiritual cancer,
He said to bring them the Cure- His Cross. Not the latest or the earliest
aberration, Gethsemane PLUS Calvary. He said to call a lie a lie, and to fear
the one who can "appear as an Angel of Light."Both Peter and
Paul said to witness with "gentleness and respect", sharing the
"hope that is within us".One post got our current blend of
American mish-mash correct. But though dying we might be, Biblical (100%)
Christians will not acquiesce to the liberal, progressive, remake and whitewash
of God's Word. We will go down as having been faithful to His revealed
Word- not to the first century Gnostics, the fourth century apostates, the 19th
Unbelievable:1- That Dr. Mouw would make such disparaging and
incorrect statements. He does not represent literal, Bible-Only, Christ-Only,
the Cross-Only Christians. Christ's Disciples' call is to feed His
sheep His pure Word of Truth, not form partners with apostate, "other"
gospels. Not one verse states that followers of Christ are to climb on board
with every new prophet, every new claim of revelation, every new salvation and
theology: Just the opposite is mandated- "Hold firm the gospel first
delivered to you", (Apostle Paul).2- The abject lack of
knowledge here by LDS on their own founder's original statement about
"all Christianity and its professors" being completely false; the Bible
being incorrect, untrustworthy and "not one word possibly" above
reproach. Did none of you attend seminary or read Church History or the
writings of Joseph Smith?Why does Donn in Layton quote more LDS
doctrine than the LDS here?3- I was born and raised Mormon for 35
years, sixth generation. I certainly know the difference between the Biblical
and the LDS Christ and gospels. The only thing the two have in common are our
love for people and family.
Donn posted:RE: randyclappern, I've never heard a church leader
demonize other religions/faiths.We talk about Christianity, but it
is a perfect pack of nonsense…the devil could not invent a better engine
to spread his work than Christianity of the nineteenth century.” (J of D
6:25)I haven't HEARD this either, happen long before I was
born. But I have read it. ;-) I haven't heard (last 50 years) any LDS
leaders demonize any other religions either. I can find thousands of folks right
now who demonized mine. Also: The Journal of Discourses is not an
official publication of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It is a
compilation of sermons and other materials from the early years of the Church,
which were transcribed and then published. It included some doctrinal
instruction but also practical teaching, some of which is speculative in nature
and some of which is only of historical interest. source: search Journal of
Discourses at lds.org
I don't understand the claims there is little or no common ground between
LDS and Evangelical beliefs. If one were to draw a Venn diagram of what each
believes about Jesus, the vast majority of doctrinal points would lie in the
overlapping area of the diagram. That's only one part of what the two
faiths have in common, and it is substantial.Jesus is the Son of God
- check. Jesus was born of Mary - check. Jesus' teachings as recorded in
the Bible - check. Jesus performed many miracles - check. Jesus suffered for the
sins of all mankind - check. Jesus was crucified and rose the third day - check.
We can receive grace through the Atonement of Jesus - check. Jesus lives -
check. Jesus saves - check. This is the core of Christianity, and we agree on
donn:Nice examples but that is only part and selected verses of the
Old and New Testament. The rest speak of God the Father and Jesus Christ, God
the Son, both being gods and both being individuals. Either that or your
definition of god describes a god with a multiple personality complex.
ThePlainsCanada, 00Mormons need to emphasize their teachings that
Jesus is the first spirit child of heavenly parents and that Joseph Smith taught
Heavenly Father was once a man who became God. This will help explain some of
the key differences to investigators.Yeah, like the evangelicals
will EVER accept mormon doctrine as equal to theirs! Maybe it will happen when
Pat Robertson flies on a pig over Salt Lake?They ONLY want you as
partners in "fighting the heathen influence". They will never
A common bridge to understanding what LDS believe regarding the role of Christ
can be found by simply reading one chapter in the Book of Mormon. 2 Nephi 31.
I have shared and read this with many of my protestant (mostly) friends through
the years, with increased understanding as a result. I highly recommend it, and
you can find the LDS scriptures online at lds.org by clicking on
RE: KTC John How is your Jesus different than my Jesus? OK,Hear, O
Israel: The LORD(YHWH) our God(Elohim) is one LORD(YHWH).(Deut 6:4).YHWH(Jehovah) is the personal name of the God of Israel. It is translated
"LORD" (with either all caps or with small caps to keep it distinct from
occurrences of "adonai"). Elohim is the generic term for god or
gods.In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with
'God', and the Word(Jesus)was 'God'.(John 1:1)No
one has ever seen God. The only one, himself God…( John 1:18(NIV). " we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of
our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,"(Titus 2:13 NET). This passage
speaks of one person not two. The key to understanding it is the use of Greek
articles.RE: randyclappern, I've never heard a church leader
demonize other religions/faiths.We talk about Christianity, but it
is a perfect pack of nonsense…the devil could not invent a better engine
to spread his work than Christianity of the nineteenth century.” (J of D
PJ in WI, The Apostles' Creed speaks very plainly of the Son (Jesus)
ascending and sitting at the right hand of his Father (God). It sounds to me
like it is speaking of two separate, individual, personages. A traditional
Christian would have a much bigger problem with that concept than a Mormon
Mormons need to emphasize their teachings that Jesus is the first spirit child
of heavenly parents and that Joseph Smith taught Heavenly Father was once a man
who became God. This will help explain some of the key differences to
Cassandove: I think the point here is NOT that you need to "learn" from
evangelicals about doctrine, but that you might be able to learn from
evangelical practice about loving the Savior and ministering to Heavenly
Father's children. I have great admiration for anyone in whom I see a
genuine desire to live their lives to reflect those two values. Don't you?
PJ in WI:What's your point? Have you not talked to a Mormon
before?The answer to you question "Can a Mormon say they believe
what it [Apostles Creed] says" is, IMHO, yes with one caveat: which
translation/version and what does the phrase "catholic church" mean?BTW, seems this creed is rather anti-trinitarian. Interesting. I guess
it could be asked if Evangelicals, et al, believe the Apostles Creed word for
Actually, a lot of LDS look forward to going to hell--to teach its inhabitants
the way out. Jesus Christ always has been the way out and always will be.
IMO there is no center or common core of doctrine or belief in U.S.
Protestantism today. Each church is a democracy where the adherents elect,
select or hire their hierarchy. The masses control the sermon and doctrine.
Almost all agree doctrinally that Catholic, Orthodox and Mormons aren't
Christian as they see the Elephant, hence the tacit permission to disparage and
show less than "Christian" manners to the aforementioned three
faiths.I am of the opinion that the era of Protestant influence in
politics and the town square is on the wane. The mega-churches of protestantism
do not preach much hard doctrine and do not demand adherence to their individual
faith's historical creeds or doctrines. As such congregations could be
seen as fair weather sailors who may not stick around for the storms of life
but seek out another more comfortable harbor. As such their rising generations
are weak in doctrine and commitment.To paraphrase the adage
attributed to Joseph Smith that a religion that did not require everything we
have cannot save us, nor produce a next generation of dedicated adherents
willing to fight the good fight.
vidanuevatx:It's not either the Evangelicals are wrong or the
LDS are wrong. By definition, Evangelicals are wrong. It's either the
Catholics are wrong or the LDS are wrong. The problem with "Catholics"
is which "Catholics" are we talking about.If the Catholics
did not stray from Historical Christianity there would be no Protestantism or
Evangelicalism. Presently, Catholics, Protestants, and Evangelical believe in a
Contemporary Christianity, not a Historical Christianity.But in the
end it's all about Priesthood Authority, not about the details of
anyone's belief. We all believe things that aren't in the Bible.
It's about God's Authority. Always has been.
As a Mormon I don't strive to be accepted by other Christians. First and
foremost, I strive to be understood correctly.Most of the animosity
towards Mormons is based on incorrect or purposefully misleading statements
about our beliefs.
I am very surprised at the number of negative comments regarding this article.
As members of the Church we should be about building bridges where ever we can,
not tearing them down. I give three cheers for Dr. Mouw and other evangelicals
who are willing to engage, talk and work with us. There are many.
The war against religion, specifically against Christians, is real. The whole
point of the collaboration of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
with Evangelical religions is to form a coalition to fight against those who
would take away our freedoms of worshipping the way we feel is correct. We do
not want a government to overstep its bounds and force us (Christians) to take
part in practices that are directly against our beliefs.In order to
accomplish this, we need to learn how to work together with each other and quit
focusing on our differences. That's what this is all about. We are not
changing our doctrinal beliefs and we are not asking any other faith to do so
either. It is obvious that we LDS have just as much animosity
toward mainstream Christians as they do toward us. Let it go and unite in the
cause of freedom.
Sorry the commonalities are not sufficient. While we share significant
cultural ties to which LDS contribute significant quality, there exists an
ecclesiastical chasm. The basic presuppositions are quite different which
leads to diverse conclusions (origins, end times, salvation, ordinances).The Holy Bible is one bridge to this gap providing a common glossary of
words.Because our presuppositions are so different the meanings of words
take on a significant diverse understanding.We are able to converse on a
broad range of ecclesiastical matters but we can't come to meaningful
agreements.LDS also use exclusive standard works which cannot bridge our
gap in any way.Likewise are drastic differences in ceremonies and
ordinances and their meaning.We both have weaknesses that seem to be
undermining our respective churches at an increasing rate but those weaknesses
are not the same except perhaps where they overlap culturally.Let us enjoy
and uplift each others cultural friendship and just leave it at that.
When hearts are softened, minds are opened. Those who hearts soften and minds
open are much more willing to hear the truths of the restored gospel which will
help build upon the faith and knowledge they already have. Lies cannot long
defame when those hearts open to the truth. Many have joined the Church when
they have been shown that the things they have been taught about the LDS are
wrong and even slanderous. I pray for the softening of the hearts of these
people because many of them are good and righteous people who are ready to
receive the fullness of the restored gospel.
This goes both ways. Member of the LDS faith need to remember to show respect
and appreciation for other faiths. The way things are going in this country, I
am grateful for any faith that preaches faith on the Lord Jesus Christ. The
second chapter of Ether tells us, in no uncertain terms, what will happen to us
if we reject Him.
I just love the term "Biblical Jesus" that the Catholics and Protestants
use against Mormons. Obviously the Protestants broke away from the Catholic
church for a reason, but they kept the core beliefs. So which is it? The
Catholic Church is either right (according to them) or wrong (according to the
Protestants). Mormons believe that the truth was lost due to the aposatasy of
the early church after the second century and through the dark ages. Mormons
believe in a restoration of all things. What could be simpler?Obviously the "Biblical Jesus" is someone that doesn't exist. He
was made up by religionists way, way back. Now before you all weep, wail, nash
your teeth and pray for me, read on.Jesus is the SON of God, the
Savior of the world. He created this world under the direction of his FATHER
who is God. They are not the same person. I just read in Mark 9:7 at the Mount
of Transfiguration where someone said, "This is my beloved Son: hear
him." Did Christ throw his voice? This is why we need ongoing revelation.
To clear up the mis-information about the "Biblical Jesus".
What was the state of Judaism when Jesus preached the pureness of His Gospel?
Were there not many divisions? How many recognized the long awaited Messiah,
whose outward appearance was a lowly carpenter's son, and miracles were
rationalized away because he taught sinners / outcasts and was labeled a
winebibber, devil, blasphemer, etc.?Look at the history of
Christianity and how it has split into so many different dominations since early
AD. Look at the wars fought over those differences of interpretation from the
same Bible. Jesus said a house divided against itself cannot stand.
Where was God's authority and truth? Wouldn't it have to be
restored?How is today any different? All dominations of creedal and
reformation Christianity are divided and being supplanted by worldly
philosophies. Wouldn't God, being unchangeable, repeat the
same patterns the world cannot see when restoring His Church and covenant people
once again in our day? Every book of the Bible was new scripture at
the time God called a living prophet and made covenants with those who followed
him. Why not today? Quite simply, the world hates pure religion as
it hated Jesus Christ when He came not as they perceived...
It is fruitless to compare the LDS Church with other religions. We are in every
meaning of Gods word the restored Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter Days. We
believe in Revelations, Prophets , Miracle's, Priesthood led authority in
governing the will of God and his son Jesus Christ. Have all revelations
stopped? The LDS Church faith tells the world that it is not so and revelations
will continue eternally, redeemably, and accountable. There can never be a
change in the LDS doctrine without revelations from God. The LDS Church believes
that there is no other way around doctrine changes except through the Prophets.
Sincerely, Trenton Spears
“These are the things we need to be talking about rather than shouting at
each other and demonizing each other.”All of the demonizing I
have heard is from sectarians directed toward Latter-day Saints.
Isn't this a good thing?
I think all the christian churches need to join hands to fight the real enemy.
Satin and his angels.
One cannot judge the whole of the Evangelical movement by the words, deeds and
demeanor of one scholar. There is no question that there is a common interest
between the Evangelicals and Mormons. But they are, by definition, mutually
exclusive.I have seen a lot of articles lately about the cozying up
with Evangelicals. Why? Is the Church working on forming a conservative
political alliance of some sort? Is it drifting into the Evangelical camp? Are
we seeing a trial balloon of some sort? Where is this going?
@PJ in WI Yes, as a Mormon I can say I believe what the Apostle's Creed
says. So what is your point, exactly?
I, for one, wouldn't mind sitting down and having a root beer summit with
this man. :)
One of the best summaries of the Christian faith is the Apostles Creed. It was
created hundreds of years ago and has stood the test of time. Can a Mormon say
they believe what it says?
I really could not care less what evangelicals chose to believe in- they also
have their own free agency to follow as they will. Bottom line though, choose
them by their fruits- who practices love and acceptance, who practices hate and
division contrary to Christ's teaching.
This overture of smacks of desperation. Fundamentalism is in retreat and
religions are losing their power over governments.Evangelicals and
Mormons have precisely two things in common: They each think of themselves as
Christians, and they don't much like where they see the world around them
going. Their only real commonalities are founded on what they don't
approve of, not what they believe it.What needs to happen is for the
public to watch Baptists, Pentecostals, Catholics and Mormons sit at a table and
discuss their various beliefs about what is and is not scripture, the age of the
Earth, the origin of humans, whether or not there are living prophets, the
nature of God, what happens to souls when the body dies, etc.The
moment that conversation begins this theme that "we're more alike than
you think" will disappear like a puff of steam.
Well, to the best of my recollection, I've never heard a church leader
demonize other religions/faiths. Whereas, there is a very long history of
intolerance, demonization, and yes, even persecution, from those of other
Christian faiths, and it still continues, to a degree, to this day. With that
said, I am glad to see some softening voices from that direction. Still, I have
to wonder if it is motovated solely by the desire to have allies to combat the
anti-religious (and specifically, the anti-Christian) movements of our current
There are commonalities -- during my hubby's military career, we often
ended up over the course of the evening with other non-drinkers -- generally
Southern Baptists!-]We lived throughout the South, are now retired
there. We've seen the fruits of anti-Mormon evangelism -- kids ridiculed
by classmates, missionaries abused, anti-Mormon preaching at the corner church,
cult section of Bible bookstore full of anti-Mormon literature, being told we
can't be considered Christian.Southern Saints are undeterred.
There's no such thing as bad publicity. People of goodwill are made
curious by all the fuss about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
OTOH, there's a lot of water under the bridge. Maybe the realization that
promoting the values of faith is more effective than marginalizing that of
others.I've often wondered about better cooperation among those
who share common values of faith, family, and freedom. I welcome cooperation in
the spirit of our LDS 11th Article of Faith: "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
@vidanuevatxLDS DO believe in the Biblical Jesus. But, it is important
that we understand that Jesus gave us the Bible; the Bible did not give us
Jesus. Too many people misunderstand the Bible and then let their
misunderstandings define Jesus. Rather, let us learn all we can about Jesus from
all sources, including modern revelation through current prophets, and then our
conception of Jesus is much more accurate.
To “vidanuevatx” There you go again----setting up
the straw man. As a Mormon, here is the Biblical Jesus I believe
in Tell us whether he is "different" than your Jesus. He
is the one who, following his great atoning sacrifice, appeared as a resurrected
being to his apostles as set forth in Luke 24:36-48, and plainly said that he
had a body of flesh and bones and was not just a spirit. You know, the one who
had those present to handle him with their hands and who ate some fish and some
honey comb to prove his physical reality. (Ever tried the physical exercise of
chewing a honeycomb?) He is the one that ascended to heaven and
will return in great glory as the "same" Jesus. (Acts 1:11) My Jesus
has not died again. He has not transformed himself into some other being, nor
has he in some unexplainable way become of one substance with his Heavenly
Father and the Holy Ghost. How is your Jesus different than my
The Book of Mormon places emphasis on the need to enter the covenant of baptism
in coming to Christ (2 Nephi 31 & 3 Nephi 11, 27 as examples). We come to
know Christ (in the way necessary for salvation in the highest heaven) as we
experience the gift of the Holy Ghost (1 Nephi 15:14 & 3 Nephi 5:23-25;
27:19-21) Both baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost are administered by the
priesthood (Moroni 2-6; D&C 84:19; 107:18-19), which was restored to Joseph
Smith, and is not something we share with other religions. We share some ethical
and some religous principles which can edify and unite us but we do not share
the most important and inspired aspects of the restoration. We come unto Christ
through covenant - hence the importance of our missionary and temple work.
Don't confuse truths of the restoration with the truths that come from the
light of Christ - a preparatory and lessor message.
vidanuevatx makes a point that seems to be based more tradition than what the
bible says. What Mormons suggest is that traditional Christianity relies too
much on tradition which has bred a lot of confusion. These traditions or creeds
are what separate Christ's followers into different camps and pits them
against one another.
A religion with new book of scripture is a bold religion. And it takes tithing
to print 150 million copies of that new scripture. All religions are good;
new scripture will unite us. Bible won't. Bible hasn't. I love
Peter and Paul for being more bold than Book of Mormon, yet simplicity of BOM,
it's emphasis on family and community and the heart and that all people can
receive revelation, surpasses Bible in which only a few people get revelation.
We all need humility, and all will be humbled, 3 Nephi 12 says you need to go
into the depths of humility to be baptized. Secularism and media and
universities ( even UVU) and the love of money are at war with true religion.
Evangelicals and Catholics and Mormons will lose to secularism until they unite
together, and a new book of scripture is the key to uniting them.
Did I understand cjb correctly to say LDS believe all others are going to hell?
I ask because I have never heard that from any Mormon who read the B of M and
the Bible. If that comment is what cjb actually meant to say then he is way off
base. To my knowledge LDS doctrine is the only mainstream religious denomination
that says every person born on this earth will be saved by Christ's
sacrifice and then resurrected. To say otherwise suggests a non-existent
understanding of our doctrine and what we teach.
What commonalities? Conservative talking points or christian values?Evangelicals don't even acknowledge us as Christians.
LDS people do believe in the biblical Jesus. CJB, LDS people do not believe all
evangelicals are going to hell. Final judgment isn't up to us.
That's up to Christ.
Long before I became LDS, I already looked at (and rejected) the beliefs of
fundamentalist Protestantism, as they had been presented to me. This was for the
following reasons: (1) Their Doctrine of the Trinity, which struck me as
unbiblical and nonsensical; (2) their Doctrine of Original Sin (asking us to
blindly accept guilt without proof for a transgression allegedly committed long
before we were born); their liberal doses of unexplained guilt; and (4) their
continual degrading and belittling of the individual (as "unworthy,"
"by nature evil," "totally depraved," etc).This has
not prevented me, however, from appreciating and learning from the writings of
such Protestant leaders as Joel Osteen ("Your Best Life Now," and other
books), and Rick Warren ("The Purpose-Driven Life"), which I purchased
in an LDS bookstore. If we can all broaden our perspective and quit talking
past each other, it may be surprising what we have in common.
As an Evangelical, I'd point out that one of the major barriers between us
and the LDS is that the LDS have their own unique definitions of such
theological items as God, Jesus, salvation, heaven, and so on. The LDS and the
Evangelicals may both love Jesus, but they distinctly disagree on who he is.
Either the Evangelicals are wrong, or the LDS are wrong. I pray for LDS people
(whom I respect in so many ways) to come to the biblical Jesus.
‘Evangelical leader says commonality with Mormons deeper than
differences’I guess if LDS could get over the fact that you
say they are all going to hell, this would ring more true.
cassandovePart of the "wanting to be accepted by
protestants" is to make things easier for LDS members to be accepted into
the community in general. Being accepted into communities, careers, education,
peewee sports and social situations allows cooperation in carrying our
Brother's work forward. There are many mouths to be fed, many people to be
comforted, and it doesn't hurt for us to work with people who love Jesus
and look to Him for their example.Also, it usually takes several
positive interactions with Mormons before someone decides to investigate us.
Today misinformation and deceit swirl around the internet with regards to our
church. Hopefully real positive experiences will outweigh the anti-propaganda
misrepresentations. We never want to destroy people's faith in Christ; we
want to build upon it. I don't want anyone to dismiss the missionaries
because they erroneously don't think we are Christians. We want to avoid
people having the following line of thinking1 I believe in Christ2 I hear Mormons don't believe in Christ3 Now I don't have to
listen to Mormons because they don't believe something at the core of my
morpunkt It's tragic there is so much animosity towards the LDS by these
Evangelical groups. And the Catholic Church would reject nothing
that is true or good in Mormonism or any other world religion, Catholic theology
would have to note that there is a tremendous amount in Mormonism that is
neither true nor good. Further, because Mormonism presents itself as a form of
Christianity yet is incompatible with the historic Christian faith, sound
pastoral practice would need to warn the Christian faithful: Mormon theology is
blasphemous, polytheistic, and cannot be considered on par with the theology of
other Christian groups.” RE: cassandove C.S. Lewis.
,“Our Father which art in Heaven with, The supreme being transcends space
and time. The first goes to pieces if you begin to apply the literal meaning to
it(Mormonism). How can a sexual animal really be our father? How can it be in
the sky? The second falls into no such traps.
The Book of Mormon's content and spirit, when read with the intent of
knowing truth will move people closer to Christ even if they never join the LDS
Church which distributes it. I've seen it happen so many times, and all of
them while living in the core of the Bible Belt. Just read it yourself, the
Spirit of God will teach you 1:1.
Religion is only what you do religiously. Hope keeps us alive. Imagination,
attitude and perseverance, desire, believe and expatiation's makes the
magic happen. Faith without the works is death.
“there’s more commonality than we realized in the way we talk about
Jesus and his atoning work.”“Those are words of the
gospel of Jesus Christ that I affirm as an evangelical Christian,”“These are profound teachings that we both talk about,”
“These are the things we need to be talking about rather than shouting at
each other and demonizing each other.”I thank Dr. Mouw for
speaking with us rather than at us. He took the time to study LDS belief and
acknowledge our belief in the saving, atoning redemptive power of the sacrifice
of Jesus Christ. Rather than taking someone's parsed, misleading, straw
man interpretation of LDS scripture, he lets us speak for ourselves. For we do
believe in Jesus of Nazareth, as He is the Son of God and willingly took the
punishment of the sins of all mankind. Now I just have to follow Him and do as
"We need to not seem like we’re just in the battle for
ourselves."Of course, not!! (sarcasm)"Politics makes
strange bedfellows"The paranoia and hypocrisy of some religious
leaders, It reminds me a Jesus' words in Matthew 15:8
“‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts
are far from me.9 They worship me in vain; their teachings are
merely human rules.’[c]”10 Jesus called the crowd to him
and said, “Listen and understand. 11 What goes into someone’s mouth
does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles
them.”12 Then the disciples came to him and asked, “Do
you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this?”13 He replied, “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will
be pulled up by the roots. 14 Leave them; they are blind guides.[d] If the blind
lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.”
"We evangelicals have often focused on the origins of the Book of Mormon and
questions of Joseph Smith’s prophetic authority, but we haven’t paid
attention to the content of the Book of Mormon... But when you stop and read it,
a lot of the doctrine looks and sounds like our doctrine, with language that
sounds like the kinds of things we say.” - Members of the Church have only
been saying this for the almost 200 years that The Book of Mormon has been
published, so I dunno why that's such a shocker to people.In
any case, I don't WANT to be "accepted" by Protestantism; there is
nothing that Protestantism can give me that brings me closer to my Heavenly
Father or to my Savior.
"A man that is a heretic after the first and second admonition reject;"
A significant percentage of Evangelicals will never agree with this
kind,considerate, and pragmatic man. It's tragic there is so much animosity
towards the LDS by these Evangelical groups. The older, conventional Protestant
congregations rarely fought the church with slander, during the a large portion
of the 20th century. He is right. There are so many things we have in common. He
seems to be very embarrassed by the Evangelical behavior towards the LDS Church,
in the last several decades, and rightly so. I personally had no clue I was
going to be met with so much suspicion and contempt from many of my family,
former friends and acquaintances, once I joined the LDS Church, in 1975, in the
very area this man lives, (the San Gabriel Valley.) Much of this was promulgated
by the newer mega churches of late. It was most likely due to the zeal of
gaining more congregants and competition for money, where younger families are
raised. Times haven't changed too much from the early 19th century, in some
respects. The bigotry is still there, just more hidden. Bravo to this "lone
wolf". He's at least trying.
Hmmm...It is good that we have another evangelical to accept us. Another step
closer to being part of protestantism.