.:AN OPEN LETTER TO OUR MORMON FRIENDS – ANSWERING THE QUESTION: “Who Are You? Are You Anti-Mormons Who Hate the LDS Church?”
The Mormon (LDS) Church has a lot to offer families and individuals. In addition to structured spiritual activities, the Church offers wholesome family events and moral entertainment. In a culture where traditional family values are under attack, many find the moral support of the LDS Church invaluable. Given the many positives of this religion, many wonder why a ministry that calls itself “Christian” would seek to discredit this Church. They often wrongly assume that our people must have had a “bad” experience in the Church that has left us angry and bitter.
This is NOT the case. In fact, many of the people involved in our outreach have had positive experiences with Mormons and have close LDS friends and relatives we admire and care deeply about. Thus, our concern is not with the people of Mormonism, many who are fine moral citizens, but with the underlining doctrines of the LDS Church that seek to discredit the Biblical teachings concerning God, Jesus Christ, the Gospel and Salvation. Critical doctrines such as these cannot be distorted without serious spiritual peril to those who teach and embrace them.
Jesus warned that in the last days “false prophets” and “false Christs” would arise and deceive many (Matthew 7:15; 24:11, 24). The Apostle Paul also warned that false teachers would arise proclaiming a different Jesus (false Christ), a different gospel and a different Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 11:3-4; Galatians 1:6-9). Concerning false prophets, the Prophet Isaiah warned:
“The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail. For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed.” —Isaiah 9:15-16, King James Bible Version
Due to the false teachings of Joseph Smith and other false prophets of Mormonism, our concern is that the kind, loving and honorable people of Mormonism who are being “led of them” are indeed being “destroyed” spiritually just as the Prophet Isaiah warned. Thus, we seek to share our concerns about the specific doctrines and historical failures of Mormonism in love with our Mormon friends so that they can find the truth and be free! Our goal in discrediting the claims of the LDS Church is not to discredit the people of Mormonism, but rather, to expose the errors of the LDS Church so that Mormons can be free from the bondage of false doctrine to embrace the “truth” in Jesus Christ.
“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. …If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” —John 8:32, 36, King James Bible Version
While our ministry encourages loving attempts to share the truth with Mormons in a kind, peaceful and respectful manner, we do not endorse or condone the antagonistic methods of angry, loud protestors who stand outside LDS buildings and events parading their boisterous disdain for Mormonism by yelling, spiteful, rude and obnoxious insults at Mormon attendees.
Although our outreach most often involves one-on-one Internet correspondence and/or personal face-to-face dialogues, it also includes the public exposure of Mormonism’s false claims through the Internet and the peaceful passing out of tracts and the holding of respectful (non-obnoxious) signs at LDS events. Again, our emphasis is upon honest, grace-filled, loving and respectful communication in witnessing, avoiding any type of contentious dialogue that involves adhomenin personal attacks upon the character of the people we meet.
Some may contend that the simple appearance of our ministry representatives at LDS events in an effort to discredit Mormonism is in itself a disrespectful method of reaching the Mormons attending these events. They may argue that LDS do not publicly display their disagreements at our churches in the manner that we do at their events.
While it is true the Mormon Church does not send representatives to our churches, they do send their missionaries publicly to our doors and the doors of our neighbors in an attempt to convert people to their faith. Therefore, we see our efforts to reach LDS by going where they are congregated at their events as a tactic no different from their missionary program that sends nearly 60,000 missionaries worldwide in public door-to-door proselytizing. Likewise, the Apostle Paul and Jesus Christ saw nothing morally wrong with the public preaching of their opposing faith to the Jews and pagans attending religious synagogues and events. Thus, we see our method of witnessing in a loving way to LDS at their events is not only validated by the public LDS missionary program, but also by the examples set forth in Scripture.
MORMON BASHING OR CHRISTIAN BASHING?
Unfortunately, no matter how loving our approach is to sharing the truth with Mormons, our ministry is often accused of “religious bigotry” and labeled with less than flattering words, such as “anti-Mormon,” “hate-mongers,” and “Mormon bashers.” We are accused of “hate and defamation” and told that our website and literature speaks nothing but “lies” about the LDS Church. However, rarely does any person making these claims seek to present a shred of evidence to prove their case against the statements made by our ministry. It is our experience that when name-calling and character assassination without ANY evidence becomes the basis for a person’s “attacks” against the information presented, his or her foundation is weak indeed.
Likewise, it seems hypocritical that LDS are quick to accuse us of “Mormon bashing” simply because we publicly state our disagreements with Mormonism when their Church publicly proclaims that “all” of our churches are “wrong,” that our “creeds” are “abominable” and that those who profess our faith are “all corrupt” as Joseph Smith stated in his First Vision account:
“I was answered that 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.’” — Joseph Smith – History 1:19
Don’t these statements sound a bit “judgmental”? If the Christian act of accusing Mormonism of false doctrine is to be regarded as “Mormon bashing,” should Christians call Mormons who adhere to these claims found in their Scriptures as “Christian bashers”? What’s the difference? Lest these statements recorded in LDS Scripture are viewed as isolated incidents in which the teachings of Mormonism “bash” Christianity, it may be helpful to review other “bashing” statements made by Mormon Prophets and Apostles below:
“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, 1976, p. 270
“I answered the questions where were frequently asked me. …‘Do you believe the Bible?’ If we do, we are the only people under heaven that does, for there are none of the religious sects of the day that do. …‘Will everybody be damned, but Mormons?’ Yes, and a great portion of them, unless they repent, and work righteousness.”—Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 119
“We talk about Christianity, but it is a perfect pack of nonsense… 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 (3rd LDS Prophet), 1858, Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, p. 167
“Brother Taylor has just said that the religions of the day were hatched in hell. The eggs were laid in hell, hatched on its borders, and then kicked on to the earth.”—Brigham Young (2nd LDS Prophet), 1858, Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, p. 176
“The Christian world, so called, are heathens as to their knowledge of the salvation of God. …With regard to true theology, a more ignorant people never lived than the present so-called Christian world.”—Brigham Young, (2nd LDS Prophet), 1860, Journal of Discourses, vol. 8, pp. 171, 199
“What does the Christian world know about God? Nothing. …Why, so far as the things of God are concerned, they are the veriest fools; they know neither God nor the things of God.”— John Taylor (3rd LDS Prophet), 1870, Journal of Discourses, vol. 13, p. 224
“Christians—those poor, miserable priests brother Brigham was speaking about—some of them are the biggest whoremasters there are on the earth, and at the same time preaching righteousness to the children of men. The poor devils, they could not get up here and preach an oral discourse, to save themselves from hell.”—Herber C. Kimball (Apostle and First Counselor to Brigham Young), 1857, Journal of Discourses, vol. 5, pp. 89-90
“Both Catholics and Protestants are nothing less than the ‘whore of Babylon’ whom the Lord denounces …as having corrupted all the earth by their fornications and wickedness. And any person who shall be so wicked 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 of the unholy and impious act.”—Orson Pratt (Apostle), The Seer, vol. 1, 1853, 1990 ed., p. 255
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints …the Lord has declared is ‘the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth’ (D&C 1:30).” —True to the Faith, 2004, pp. 136-137
If the LDS Church is to be regarded as the “only true…church,” what does this make all the other churches of Christianity? False! With this belief, is it any wonder early Mormon leaders (as documented above) publicly “bashed” Christians of all denominations as being as “corrupt” as “hell”?
WHAT EVERY LDS PERSON SHOULD CONSIDER:
Instead of calling Christians names when they seek to defend themselves against the “bashing” claims of Mormonism, LDS would do well to heed the advice of their leaders and their Scriptures as stated below:
“One of the grand fundamental principles of ‘Mormonism’ is to receive truth, let it come from whence it may.” —Teaching Of The Prophet Joseph Smith, by Joseph Fielding Smith, 1976, p. 313
“I say to the whole world, receive the truth, no matter who presents it to you. Take up the Bible, compare the religion of the Latter-day Saints with it, and see if it will stand the test.” —Journal of Discourses, Brigham Young, (2nd LDS Prophet), vol. 16, p. 46
“If you should have visits here from those professing to be Christians, and they intimate a desire to preach to you, by all means invite them to do so.” —Discourses of Brigham Young, 1954, p. 328
“If we cannot convince you by reason nor by the word of God, that your religion is wrong, we will not persecute you… we ask from you the same generosity… convince us of our errors of doctrine, if we have any, by reason, by logical arguments, or by the word of God, and we will be ever grateful for the information.” —Orson Pratt (Apostle), The Seer, vol. 1, 1853, 1990 ed., p. 15
“If a faith will not bear to be investigated; if its preachers and professors are afraid to have it examined, their foundation must be very weak.” —Journal of Discourses, George A. Smith (Apostle), 1871, p. 216
“Proveallthings; hold fast that which is good.”—1 Thessalonians 5:21, King James Bible Version
“Wherefore, confound your enemies; call upon them to meet you both in public and in private; and inasmuch as ye are faithful their shame shall be made manifest. Wherefore, let them bring forth their strong reasons against the Lord.” —Doctrine and Covenants 71:7-8
So even if LDS people view us as “enemies” of their religion, their own Scripture proclaims that they should allow us to meet them “both in public and in private” to discuss our differences because the truth will win out.
WE LOVE MORMONS!
We cannot overemphasize this fact. We do this ministry because we LOVE Mormons and want to see them saved in the truth of Jesus Christ. If we “hated” Mormons, as they assert, this would be the last place on earth that we would spend our time as the Scriptures testify:
“Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”—Proverbs 27:6
“Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?” —Galatians 4:16
If you want to know more about the reasons we do this ministry, see our responses to the following commonly asked questions:
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