Wednesday, December 15, 2010

What has Mormonism become?

One thing I can truly respect about Jehovah's Witnesses is that they have not become what Mormonism has; a religion without conviction. Though i've only been exposed to Mormons no earlier than 5 years ago, I have good reason to believe that the Mormonism of yesterday has made a huge shift in its approach and its standing as "Christians." That is, there was once a day when Mormons stood with conviction as they distanced themselves from the so-called abominable and corrupt beliefs of all other religions. More importantly, they weren't afraid to tell others.

Now, it seems that Mormons are losing their conviction of exclusivity and trying to fit themselves into mainstream Christianity. What you will listen to in the video below will make this very evident. In the discussion, you have two Mormons expressing their disagreement with a Christian who is presenting arguments against Mormonism at their place of worship. Even though the biblical apostles and Jesus appeared in the synagogues and spoke judgment upon those who were there, these Mormons find such actions to be abhorrent. But what is even more telling is the fact that their own prophet was clear in his denunciation of all false religion; specifically, the mainstream Christianity of his day. Though i'm not aware of any instances where Smith appeared on church property to preach his message, these Mormons seemed to be uncomfortable with any negative convictions that one would express towards another religions, whether coming from Mormons or mainstream Christians.

I think anyone who listens to this interaction will find it extremely interesting. But more importantly, we need to be aware of this shift in Mormonism in order to be more effective in our presentation of the gospel.


Mariano said...

Indeed: the very premise of Mormonism, the very first revelation to Smith was one of distinction between corrupt Christianity and the restored revelation: Mormonism.

Note what Newsweek reported in the lead up to the 2002 Olympics that took place in Salt Lake City:

“…the church now insists it be regarded as a Christian church…

the church's hierarchy recently advised the media that the term Mormon Church is no longer acceptable. Henceforth, officials declared, short references to the church should read: “The Church of Jesus Christ.” In this way the church hopes to emphasize what Mormons share with historic Christianity, not what makes them different…

In 1971, images of Jesus appeared only five times in the church's official monthly publication, the Ensign; in 1999, the Ensign published 119 of them…

Jan Shipps, who has studied the Saints for 40 years. [states] “After a century of cultivating their separate identity as a religious people, Mormons now want to stress their affinities with traditional Christianity yet highlight their uniqueness.”

Kenneth L. Woodward, "A Mormon Moment," Newsweek, (Sep. 10, 2001), p. 48

Also, the Glenn Beck sorts of Mormons claim to be Christians like any other Christian and he is a Mormon without regards to their theological claims but was willing to, in his own words, “drink the Kool-Aid” of Mormonism (pardon the pseudo-spam but he did say that: Glenn Beck and Mormonism).

Seth R. said...

Nah, we just came out of isolation in Utah and started refusing to allow Evangelical counter-cult whack jobs a monopoly on defining what we believe.

They're understandably rather bitter about it right now.

Life's rough.

Mariano said...

"...I must join none of them, for they were all wrong;
and the Personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in his sight;
that those professors were all corrupt;
that: 'they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof.'
He again forbade me to join with any of them...
--Joseph Smith

Anonymous said...

I believe corect , but his approach and tone is arrogant and argumentative...I recommend he read Pauls sermon at the Areopagus and pick up some tips on tact..