Mormons often say that Christians that write or speak about the Mormon Church and Mormonism as being contrary to the gospel that Christ and His apostles taught are Anti-Mormon. But, on the other side of the coin, is the fact that the Mormon Church and Mormon Church leaders have a long history of disparaging Christianity, declaring all churches and ministers of Christianity to be false, fallen and contrary to true doctrine. The Mormon Church leaders also routinely mischaracterize what biblical Christianity teaches.
So, by the Mormon standard of what makes one Anti-Mormon, is the reverse scenario that Mormons are Anti-Christian?
THE ANTI-MORMON LABEL
Mormons and the Mormon Church often and freely throw around the term “Anti-Mormon”. The Mormon Church often labels anyone who speaks anything about Mormonism or the Mormon Church that does not promote faith in the Mormon Church or that does not portray it a positive light as Anti-Mormon.
But the term Anti-Mormon really is far too broad a brush and is used far too frequently where it’s not warranted. Certainly, there are some that may qualify as Anti-Mormon in the sense that they hate the Mormon Church (most of those are individuals who have belonged to the Mormon Church and at some point have awoken to the reality that they have not been taught the truth about the foundations and doctrines of their own church by the church itself; as a result, these individuals have some anger and resentment towards the Mormon Church – but not all that leave the Mormon Church harbor hate or anger towards it). However, just because one seeks to get the message out to the Mormon people that there are credibility problems with the Mormon Church and/or that Mormon Beliefs are in conflict with the Word of God does not mean that there is hate or attack in the message. But the term Anti-Mormon, which Mormons so freely apply, indeed carries an inference of hate and/or religious bigotry. But the reality is that kindly proclaiming the truth in love and with real concern for the spiritual welfare of a people is not hateful - it is not Anti.
I think most Christians would not condone any behavior that is truly disrespectful to the Mormon people, such as defiling Mormon Temple Garments in public or chanting Secret Temple phrases on the streets in a mocking manner (truly, I think is but a few that use such approaches). Those who do engage in such conduct, should examine the Word of God and re-think their approach. If the truth cannot be proclaimed in love, maybe it should not be proclaimed unless and until it can be proclaimed in a spirit of love and concern for the welfare of those to whom the message is directed.
PROCLAIMING THE TRUTH IN LOVE
It is legitimate for bible-believing Christians to bring to light doctrines that truly are contrary to the Word of God - the bible. Neither Jesus nor His apostles would hold back in calling out false doctrines and practices and giving a warning. Here is an example of some of their warnings:
"[B]ut there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed." Galatians 1:1-8
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth ANOTHER JESUS, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive ANOTHER SPIRIT, which ye have not received, or ANOTHER GOSPEL, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” 2 Corinthians 11: 3-4
"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ." 2 Corinthians 11:3-4
In fact, past LDS Church Leaders in the past have proclaimed that if the Mormon Church or its scriptures be proven false that it should be exposed to the world as a fraud. Here's an oft-quoted example:
Orson Pratt made this statement concerning The Book of Mormon: "This book must be either true or false. If true, it is one of the most important messages ever sent from God... If false, it is one of the most cunning, wicked, bold, deep-laid impositions ever palmed upon the world, calculated to deceive and ruin millions... The nature of the message in the Book of Mormon is such, that if true, no one can possibly be saved and reject it; If false, no one can possibly be saved and receive it... If, after a rigid examination, it be found an imposition, it should be extensively published to the world as such; the evidences and arguments on which the imposture was detected, should be clearly and logically stated, that those who have been sincerely yet unfortunately deceived, may perceive the nature of deception, and to be reclaimed, and that those who continue to publish the delusion may be exposed and silenced, not by physical force, neither by persecutions, bare assertions, nor ridicule, but by strong and powerful arguments - by evidences adduced from scripture and reason..." (Orson Pratt's Works, Divine Authenticity of the Book of Mormon, Liverpool, 1851, pp. 1-2).
But Mr. Pratt’s statement was made in a different time and place when reliable information about the Mormon Church was not readily available. Now that it is and Mormonisms facts and claims can largely be checked, the Mormon Church would like to have the world believe that anyone that speaks about Mormonism in anything but the most positive light is “Mormophobic”.
There are, in fact, now many evidences that show that the veracity Mormon Church, the Book of Mormon and other Mormon Scriptures and teachings are, at worst, false - or, at best, seriously in question. Although it may make some uncomfortable, there should be no harm in letting the facts be illuminated so that the facts can be seen for what they are (in fact, that should be encouraged).
Jesus declared: "[f]or every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God." John 3:20-21
What is truth will not mind being examined for what it is. After all, it is the truth that shall make us free. Keeping true facts hidden only leads to bondage and darkness.
ARE MORMONS ANTI-CHRISTIAN?
For the reverse scenario, consider some of Mormonism's many statements against Christianity:
"What is it that inspires professors of Christianity generally with a hope of salvation? It is that smooth, sophisticated influence of the devil, by which he deceives the whole world," (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, compiled by Joseph Fielding Smith, p. 270) (Emphasis added)
"We talk about Christianity, but it is a perfect pack of nonsense.... Myself and hundreds of the Elders around me have seen its pomp, parade, and glory; and what is it? It is a sounding brass and a tinkling symbol; it is as corrupt as hell; and the Devil could not invent a better engine to spread his work than the Christianity of the nineteenth century," (John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, 1858, p. 167) (Emphasis added)
"The Christian world, so-called, are heathens as to the knowledge of the salvation of God" (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 8:171)
"With a regard to true theology, a more ignorant people never lived than the present so-called Christian world" (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 8:199)
"And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God [Mormon Church] belongeth to that great church which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth" (1 Nephi 14:10)
"And when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth [all churches other than the LDS Church], whose foundation is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence. . ." (1 Nephi. 14:17)
[There is] "no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith. If Joseph Smith was verily a prophet, and if he told the truth...no man can reject that testimony without incurring the most dreadful consequences, for he cannot enter the kingdom of God" Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, p.190
"You call us fools; but the day will be, gentlemen and ladies, whether you belong to this Church or not, when you will prize brother Joseph Smith as the Prophet of the Living God, and look upon him as a God, and also upon Brigham Young, our Governor” Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 5, p. 88
"One of the most fallacious doctrines originated by Satan and propounded by man is that man is saved alone by the grace of God; that belief in Jesus Christ alone is all that is needed for salvation," (Miracle of Forgiveness, Spencer W. Kimball, p. 206)
"This is the only true church ...This is not a church. This is the Church of Jesus Christ. There are churches of men all over the land and they have great cathedrals, synagogues, and other houses of worship running into the hundreds of millions of dollars. They are churches of men. They teach the doctrines of men, combined with the philosophies and ethics and other ideas and ideals that men have partly developed and partly found in sacred places and interpreted for themselves" (Spencer W. Kimball, Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p.421)
"[H]e that confesseth not that Jesus has come in the flesh and sent Joseph Smith with the fullness of the Gospel to this generation, is not of God, but is anti-christ" (Brigham Young , Journal of Discourses, vol. 9, p.312)
"Should you ask why we differ from other Christians, as they are called, it is simply because they are not Christians as the New Testament defines Christianity" (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 10:230) (Emphasis added)
"Both Catholics and Protestants are nothing less than the 'whore of Babylon' whom the Lord denounces by the mouth of John the Revelator as having corrupted all the earth by their fornications and wickedness. Any person who shall be so corrupt as to receive a holy ordinance of the Gospel from the ministers of any of these apostate churches will be sent down to hell with them, unless they repent" (Orson Pratt, The Seer, p. 255) (Emphasis added)
With declarations such as the forgoing from the Mormon Leadership, should we then refer to Mormons as "Anti-Christians"? Maybe not. Read on.
MORMON HUNGER FOR ACCEPTANCE AS CHRISTIANS
Despite Mormonism’s long history of disparaging Christians and Christianity, the Mormon Church has, in recent years, become hungry for acceptance by the world as “Christians”. In this pursuit, the Mormon Church has engaged in a massive PR campaign to re-make the Mormon Church’s image in order to create the perception of Mormons as ordinary “Christians” - ordinary Christians that have something better to offer, that is.
For the first time, Mormons are making a concerted effort to employ Christian terminology and concepts to Mormonism in their communications with the outside world. For example, the Mormon Church has long avoided the use of terms such as “born-again” or “saved by grace” (because they essentially do not believe in those concepts – at least not in the way that they are clearly taught in the bible and in the way the ordinary Christians understand them). While you still won’t hear these terms used or these concepts being taught any differently within the Mormon Church in its church meetings or in their internal teaching materials, in public Mormon apologists and Mormon Church media are using these terms trying to convince the world that Mormons really are “Christians” just like everybody else. In essence, they’re saying “hey look Christians, we’re just like you. See, we believe in grace too. We believe that it is only by faith in Christ that we can be saved. There’s nothing to be afraid of.” The reality of the Mormon beliefs and teachings, however, is very different.
[For a great article that addresses some of what is going on with the Mormon Church in this respect, see Ed Decker’s article entitled "The Emergent Mormon Church" on FaithWriters at: http://www.faithwriters.com/article-details.php?id=128489 ]
In sum, the Mormon Church has evolved from a point of being clearly Anti-Christian to the point where they are now desperately trying to create the perception that the Mormon Church is aligned with Christianity. But we must be careful not to be fooled. What the Mormon Church is doing is merely putting lipstick on the pig. The lipstick might make it appear to be a little more attractive from the outside. But it is still very much the same pig behind the makeup.
For more information on Mormon beliefs as compared to biblical Christianity, see: www.truthshallsetufree.com
This article may be used only with permission of the author.
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