The Heart of Mormonism posted an article on April 15 (2012) titled, “The Truth About Mormonism.” The article is a basic rehash covering some social aspects of Mormonism that are sometimes misunderstood/misrepresented in the media. Nothing much in the article caught my attention, but as I skimmed through the comments one jumped out at me.

For longtime Mormon Coffee readers this topic might bring a yawn. But because many folks are newer readers, and others are just passing through, this is a topic (in my opinion) worth binging up from time to time.

Last week I spoke with many Mormons as I handed out literature in front of the Kansas City Mormon temple during its public open house. One criticism I heard often from the Latter-day Saints was, “We don’t stand in front of your church and hand out critical literature.” Whenever I hear this complaint, my first thought is, “In light of the missionary movements of the early Christians as chronicled in the book of Acts, why don’t you?” But I don’t usually express this out loud. I usually answer with a recounting of Joseph Smith’s First Vision, which often leaves my LDS friend in quiet contemplation.

It should come as no surprise to me after all these years, yet I’m still astounded when I hear or read something like what commenter philbryson wrote.

“Thank you, Mr. Smoot [the journalist], for a fair article not based on motives to condemn an important, rapidly growing religion. The rapid growth has stimulated a lot of opposition from the insecure. Our growth is not based on attacking other religions, but on the desire to share our beliefs with others.”

Okay. Let’s talk about Joseph Smith’s First Vision. According to Joseph Smith, in answer to a prayer, God the Father and His Son appeared to Joseph:

“My object in going to inquire of the Lord was to know which of all the sects was right, that I might know which to join. No sooner, therefore, did I get possession of myself, so as to be able to speak, than I asked the Personages who stood above me in the light, which of all the sects was right (for at this time it had never entered into my heart that all were wrong)—and which I should join.

“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 1:18-19)

Mr. philbryson (and others) believe that Mormonism is persecuted by “insecure” people of other faiths who are somehow less virtuous than members of the Mormon faith who would not dream of challenging or criticizing (“attacking”) other religions. Apart from the fact that challenging false religions and beliefs is biblical, the idea that Mormonism/Mormons do not criticize other churches is just plain wrong.

Mormonism’s very existence is predicated upon the LDS teaching that all non-Mormon churches are wrong; all non-Mormon creeds are an abomination before God; and all people who profess these beliefs are corrupt. That is talking about my church. That is talking about your church. That is talking about my faith and your faith. Unless, of course, you belong to “the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth” (Doctrine and Covenants 1:30), identified by the Mormon religion as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Somehow, Mormons have gotten it into their heads that Christians who stand up and say, “Wait a minute,” are “insecure” and are lashing out at the LDS Church without reason. These Mormons do not recognize the historic and ongoing LDS criticism of all other faiths that emanates from Mormonism: brought door-to-door by Mormon missionaries; declared unabashedly in LDS scripture; taught from Mormon pulpits; and proclaimed in Church magazines and manuals. As much as Mormons would like to think otherwise, LDS Church growth is “based on attacking other religions.” Mormons cannot share the heart of their religion without attacking others. It is at the very foundation–the very formation–of the Mormon Church. Those who are the targets of these flaming darts are both obligated and justified to respond with truth (Ephesians 6:14-20; Jude 1:3; 2 Timothy 2:24-26; Ephesians 4:14-15).

About Sharon Lindbloom

Sharon surrendered her life to the Lord Jesus Christ in 1979. Deeply passionate about Truth, Sharon loves serving as a full-time volunteer research associate with Mormonism Research Ministry. Sharon and her husband live in Minnesota.
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112 Responses to The Heart of Mormonism

  1. fproy2222 says:

    Mike R says: – April 28, 2012 at 3:37 pm – (Fred, You already don’t believe in that ? Great , neither do we )

    You just believe it with no proof.

    You say that is bad for a Mormon to do, but it seems ok for you to just think it is so.

    Is that it? or are you just acting in ways you say is bad for others?

    Remember, I was asked to challange ya’ll.


  2. Rick B says:

    Fred said he would post information that would shatter or faith. Then Fred said,

    How do you justify the original document of an eye witness that says Jesus is the illegitimate son of a Roman soldier and that Mary told Joseph the story of Jesus being the Son of God just to cover up her adultery?


    Well I just want to say to all my fellow Christian brothers and sisters, Fred just proved Christianity wrong by what he said. I cried for hours, my wife and kids also cried. Were really are just devastated. Fred said it was true and I believe Him. So I guess I am no longer a believer and am now an atheist. Good by my friends. Rick

  3. Rick B says:

    Hello My Fellow Christian Brother and sisters.
    My last post was a joke, Fred simply said this document exists and again provided zero evidence. Kind of like the Golden plates of JS, They dont exist. Good joke Fred, you really are something else. At least I got a good laugh out of it. Rick

  4. falcon says:

    OK time to deconstruct fred.

    “how do you justify”
    We don’t fred. That’s your job.

    “the original document”
    Produce it fred.

    “of an eyewitness”
    And who might that be?

    …..and the rest of what our scholar fred wrote can be reviewed here here:

    Here’s the bottom line of fred’s charge.

    Jews claim Jesus was born of adultery, calling him “Jesus ben Panthera,” an illegitimate bastard of the union of Mary with a soldier named Panthera. Even in Jesus’ day, He was accused of being “born of fornication” by the Pharisees, John 8:41. There would be no point of accusing Him of illegitimate birth unless the claim was being made that His birth was not normal but divine. Jews had strict rules for name-giving. A Jew was named after his father (e.g. Jochanan ben Sakkai) even if his father had died before his birth. He was named after his mother only when the father was unknown. In Mark 6:3, Jesus was referred to as

    “the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda and Simon.”

    Throughout the Gospels, the Savior claimed to be the Son of God. If He were born through natural processes, then His claims are false and He was not the Messiah. Jesus was either born of a virgin or a harlot.

    So we see here that fred is attacking the Virgin Birth of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This is so typical. It’s right up there with attacking the Bible as the Word of God, the nature of Jesus and His finished work on the cross.
    I can see why fred got taken in by Mormonism.

    Actually fred provided me with my laugh for the day.

  5. falcon says:

    “Skeptics argue against the virgin birth. But the Bible is clear that God became a man and died for the sins of all mankind. Through the prophet Isaiah, the Almighty has indeed given us a sign for our deliverance from Satan and sin. That sign is that through the seed of the woman, a virgin birth, God came into the world, lived a perfect sinless life, and died for the sins of all mankind. The perfect sacrifice of the Messiah can be applied to cover the sins of all those who repent, are baptized, and live a life of overcoming in obedience to the Eternal.”

    “Behold, a virgin shall conceive!” should spur us to dedicated action and gratitude for the Father who gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes on Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    Actually fred has given us an excellent opportunity to defend Our Savior and perhaps turn fred from his sins and into a relationship with Jesus. Knowing who Jesus is and what He did for us is fundamental to this relationship. Mormons were warned by Bruce McConkie not to seek a personal relationship with Jesus. Isn’t that strange? The one thing that will provide eternal life for Mormons is denied them by one of their leaders.
    Is it any doubt who is the father of Mormonism?

  6. falcon says:

    Well I think we can see that fred is right at home attacking the Virgin Birth of Jesus. As we know, this is right in line with what Mormon prophet Brigham Young taught about Jesus. However in BY rendition, the Mormon god actually had physical sex with Mary.
    These Mormons are something else aren’t they? And then they wonder why Christians call Mormonism a cult and reject them as being Christians.
    Mormons reject all of the major doctrines of Christianity. Instead they follow the hollow utterances of men with depraved minds.
    Isn’t it interesting that the natural allies of Mormonism are the atheists.

  7. Mike R says:

    Fred, what you are “challenged” to do is provide us with a good reason why Mormonism
    is the true gospel of Jesus . You’re always creating little indirect rabbit trails away from that
    “challenge” . The way to replied to Andy was terrible , you seem not to care about whatever
    you say or imply , you just throw it out there and hope the conversation keeps going . Most of
    the time it’s not easy even understanding your meaning in what you reply to us here . Now
    look at where the conversation has drifted with your latest posts. If you are here to play some
    type of game of attrition then go ahead and claim victory because apparently you’re not
    ready to answer the important questions about Mormonism . There’s plenty of information
    on MRM for any Mormon to peruse concerning whether Mormonism is true or not so please
    avail yourself of this . Prayer for you is ongoing .

  8. Rick B says:

    Fred said

    Remember, I was asked to challange ya’ll.


    Really Fred? Thats the best you can do?
    Please, dont give up your day job, your trying to perfect your stand up act here and were not buying.
    You cannot say you challenged us, but then give zero evidence, or say, evidence is out their, find it. Were not going to waste our time chasing down everyone and everything that claims Jesus does not exist, or claims He really is not God or who He claimed to be.

    At least we give quotes and cite our sources, if you dont believe them or look them over, then thats on you, but simply to say, Hey Fred, Evidence is out their saying JS is a fraud, look it up, thats really lame.

  9. grindael says:

    “Jesus is the illegitimate son of a Roman soldier…”

    Quick, suppress Fred’s post…

  10. grindael says:

    And I thought he was serious.

  11. fproy2222 says:

    I had two reply posts that were not posted, If this gets through you will know why I have not answered ya’ll.


    [The two comments that Fred refers to here have not been approved because they do not contribute anything meaningful to the discussion. One is a typical why-don’t-you-study-harder/better comment, and the other is a false accusation comment. Fred is welcome to post comments that actually engage the topic under discussion, but comments that fail to do so may not be approved.]

  12. Rick B says:

    Fred said

    If this gets through you will know why I have not answered ya’ll.

    Fred, If you dont answer us, I just figure it is because you cant. And when you do answer us, it is usually more of the same, Nothing. It tends to be, look for yourself type of reply’s. Nothing with you will ever change, you simply cannot answer us, and will not answer us.

    All you do is tell us you have all the answers and how hard you studied, yet you never give us the answers, despite the fact the Bible says to give every man an answer thats asks for the hope that lies with in you. Since you dont and never do, it tells me you cannot.

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