When a Mormon is Deceived…

TellTruthHonesty is the best policy. Aesop knew it. In the 6th century B.C. he chose that to be the moral of his fable, “Mercury and the Woodcutter.”

George Washington knew it. He said in his Farewell Address, “I hold the maxim no less applicable to public than to private affairs, that honesty is always the best policy.”

The writer of Proverbs 12 knew it, teaching, “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are His delight” (verse 22).

Even Mormon blogger Jana Riess knows it, as she made clear in her recent post titled “Mormons Who Doubt.”

In her blog post, Dr. Riess discusses the way the Mormon Church has historically handled doubting and questioning members. Speaking of an essay she particularly likes, she writes,

“One of my favorite pieces in that collection is about how Mormonism deals, often badly, with doubt. Mormons, [Boyd] Peterson writes, have been taught that doubt is an enemy to be avoided rather than a journey to be embraced.”

In the essay highlighted by Dr. Riess, Boyd Peterson suggests that the Mormon Church needs to “decriminalize doubt.” He writes,

“Doubt is not a moral weakness; it does not inexorably lead to agnosticism or atheism. It does not inevitably destroy faith.”

Nevertheless, as Dr. Riess points out, some Mormon leaders have taught the exact opposite. At the April 2009 General Conference, LDS Seventy Kevin Pearson taught about the “Six Destructive Ds.”

“First is doubt. Doubt is not a principle of the gospel. It does not come from the Light of Christ or the influence of the Holy Ghost. Doubt is a negative emotion related to fear. It comes from a lack of confidence in one’s self or abilities. It is inconsistent with our divine identity as children of God.

“Doubt leads to discouragement…

“Discouragement leads to distraction…”

And so on, through “lack of diligence” and “disobedience” until arriving at “disbelief…the state of having chosen to harden one’s heart.” Mr. Peterson said,

dishonesty“These Six Destructive Ds—doubt, discouragement, distraction, lack of diligence, disobedience, and disbelief—all erode and destroy our faith. We can choose to avoid and overcome them…

“In a household of faith, there is no need to fear or doubt. Choose to live by faith and not fear.”

Mr. Pearson’s ideas find support in early Mormon apostle Heber C. Kimball who said,

“I will give you a key which Brother Joseph Smith used to give in Nauvoo. He said that the very step of apostasy commenced with losing confidence in the leaders of this church and kingdom, and that whenever you discerned that spirit you might know that it would lead the possessor of it on the road to apostasy.” (Deseret News, Apr. 2, 1856, p. 26, quoted in “Chapter 27: Beware the Bitter Fruits of Apostasy,” Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, 2007, 315–26)

In more recent times, Twelfth Mormon President Spencer W. Kimball explained,

“Apostasy usually begins with question and doubt and criticism. It is a retrograding and devolutionary process. The seeds of doubt are planted by unscrupulous or misguided people, and seldom directed against the doctrine at first, but more often against the leaders.” (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 462)

For the sake of argument, Dr. Riess supposes that this sort of progression is true (i.e.,  doubt leads to disbelief and to people leaving the Mormon Church). She writes,

“If leaving is people’s most honest response to doubt then I say it is the Church’s fault and not the defectors’ own. Let me say that again. It is the Church’s fault, because of the zero-sum game it has too often made of religious truth. We set up a house of cards in which we tell our young people that either ALL of it is true or NONE of it is true, and then we are astonished when they depart because they have found an ounce of adulteration in the total purity they have been indoctrinated to expect.

“To avoid this result we hide historical and theological realities, a strategy which backfires more often than not.”

keep-calm-and-tell-the-truth-6Again quoting Boyd Peterson,

“…we should not be afraid of the truth. Often we Mormons seem scared that if the truth somehow got out there—the truth about our history, our evolving theology, our fallible leaders—people would leave the Church in droves. But what tends to happen is just the opposite. We hide the truth, and then, when they discover it on their own, people feel like they have been lied to, betrayed.”

People don’t merely feel like they’ve been lied to and betrayed; they have been. Perhaps the official Mormon institution does not know that honesty is the best policy–even though the LDS manual Gospel Principles is clear on the topic:

“When we speak untruths, we are guilty of lying. We can also intentionally deceive others by a gesture or a look, by silence, or by telling only part of the truth. Whenever we lead people in any way to believe something that is not true, we are not being honest.” (Gospel Principles, 2009, 181)

Therefore, Dr. Riess believes the answer to the problem of betrayal leading to apostasy is honesty. She advocates Mormons begin addressing these controversial issues in a “supportive environment.” And while she thinks the Mormon Church is taking small steps in that direction, to me it appears that such a movement toward honesty, transparency and supportiveness has not yet begun in earnest.

For example, Dr. Riess writes that she is saddened by the on-going stories she hears of how doubters and questioners are treated by Church leaders,

“…church leaders who shut down their questions, or who take away their callings or temple recommends just for asking questions, or who don’t allow doubting fathers to baptize their children. Just today on Facebook I learned that a Mormon man and his wife were turned away from the temple because their stake president, unbeknownst to them, had canceled their recommends.”

Another incident currently in the news is the story of Mormon author Denver C. Snuffer, Jr., who has been excommunicated for his portrayal of Mormon history. The Salt Lake Tribune reports,

“In his book, ‘Passing the Heavenly Gift,’ Snuffer used the faith’s signature scripture, the Book of Mormon, and founder Joseph Smith’s ‘divine revelations’ to analyze LDS history from Smith’s death in 1844 to the present. He concludes that every Mormon prophet, starting with Brigham Young, caved to social, political and legal pressures to accommodate mainstream American society — starting with giving up polygamy, then becoming more corporate and eventually yielding to ‘social progressives’ by softening language on same-sex attraction.

“‘Today, marketing the institution has become more important to Mormon success,’ Snuffer writes on the book’s back cover, ‘than preserving the original religious content.’”

Another example is provided by Christian (former Mormon) author Lynn Wilder, whose excellent book, Unveiling Grace, has just hit the market. She writes in an email,

“Someone we have been working with was threatened by her bishop and stake president for posting that the book ‘Unveiling Grace’ was out. They visited her within 2 days and gave her 2 days to decide to resign or she would be excommunicated. She and hubby sent letters by registered mail and both the bishop and stake president refused the letters and had them returned to sender…”

truthDr. Riess notes, “Such behavior is driven by fear.” But truth has nothing to fear; Jesus said that the truth sets us free (John 8:32).

That is my hope and prayer for all Mormons. Honesty is the best policy. It does not ultimately lead to the destruction predicted by Mormon authorities – rather, it leads to the incomparable freedom Jesus promises all who come to Him.

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.
This entry was posted in Mormon Culture, Truth, Honesty, Prayer, and Inquiry and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

99 Responses to When a Mormon is Deceived…

  1. johnnyboy says:

    FOF = troll.


  2. mapleleaf says:

    FoF you said
    “The discovery these people experience usually occurs when they find things out from sources that have their own spin and bias (any source does have bias). But because the person didn’t do their own study while a member, they feel like the church lied to them. It is childish. The folks I am talking about have simply change the source from which they are being spoon fed. While it used to be the church, it is now the critics of the church. There is consistency is the superficial nature of their understanding- either as a member and later as a critic. We see it here in spades.”

    I don’t know if you meant to be offensive or humorous but I find it interesting that the spin and bias of the information that led me from the church was from LDS sources. And the source I am now “Fed” from is God’s word – and His word is sufficient for me. And I think you nailed it – my source (the bible) is a critic of the mormon church.

  3. faithoffathers says:


    So which is it? Is the LDS church hiding things and encouraging people not to study or learn anything? Or do some people simply not make a real effort to study what is available?

    If you learned things from LDS sources that caused your departure, why are other former members here claiming the church hid those things from them?

    Seems I am not the one wanting to have my cake and eat it too.

  4. Clyde6070 says:

    I cannot become a christian because in the fourth century church members burned a synagogue down and were told by the Emperor to pay the jews for what they had done. They didn’t. I cannot see becoming a christian because for a thousand years the bible was not read by the local population. Only the church was able to tell the locals what the bible said. Sola scriptura? I cannot see becoming a christian because of the wars faught between protestant and catholic, pogroms against the jews, and the crusades against the Muslims. I cannot become a christian because of all those people who were burned at the stack for being heretics. Is there something really wrong with me or was there christianity back then???????

  5. Mike R says:

    Clyde, you still don’t understand , and that’s sad . Have you ever stopped to think about how
    you reason about this ? Try and concentrate on these questions I have for you that are in
    reference to your statement above.
    – were all 4th century church members wanting to burn down a synagogue ?
    – were all Protestants wanting to kill Catholics, and all Catholics wanting to kill Protestants ?
    – did everyone want to kill the Muslims during the Crusades ?
    – did all christians desire to burn at the stake those who believed different from them ?

    Do you see how you’re reasoning is so flawed ? Why would you ever base your decision not to
    leave Mormonism and ” become a christian ” on the behavior of those people back then ?
    There were true believers in Jesus back then , who though perhaps small in number, faithfully
    clung to Jesus they had turned to for salvation . There was no universal apostasy from the
    christian religion / Jesus’ gospel , that’s a myth created Mormon authorities so that you follow
    them . If you would put down the books you’re reading about atrocities centuries ago committed
    by SOME “christians ” , and read the New Testament you’ll discover the truth about how to be
    forgiven and receive eternal life , and also how to live for Jesus —- you don’t need to follow
    Mormon prophets for this .
    Mormonism is not the answer , Jesus is . The simplicity of that fact may escape you at this time
    but keep thinking about it will you ? God can help you . I’m praying for you .

  6. Rick B says:

    I cannot see being a LDS member because, You guys simply cannot be and are not honest.
    I cannot see being a mormon because I’m told I dont study LDS sources, but when I do, I find no evidence for the truth of your claims.

    I cannot be Mormon because, You Clyde, and FoF claim we have no idea what were talking about, yet when asked for evidence, you guys cannot provide it. I’m told by you guys, Go ask the general authority for answers. I reply with, You know as well as I do, they wont talk with us, so you put us in touch with them, then you guys run away hoping I will forget I said that.

    FoF claims you guys encourage seeking the truth and looking into facts, I claim thats false, I stated I would love to talk with the church or leaders and show you thats not true. You guys know I’m write so you avoid me on that issue. You guys claim the Trinity is false and so is Adam God.

    When those topics are made and we can talk in depth, You guys never reply to them, then when called out about it, you make excuses. So instead of mindless babble from you guys, how about honest answers as to why I should be LDS?

    And I notice faith you are what I thought, no claims from you about how you will contact your church for a video taped debate from just some little guy who knows nothing according to LDS here.

    Clyde, You claimed you were leaving, you did not, you know what thats makes you? Need I spell it out for you?

  7. Rick B says:

    Clyde, You talk about Christians Killing, so thats why you wont be one. Well did you forget about Mormons killing? Can you say, Mountain meadow massacre? Or Brigham Young and his avenging Angles? Good grief Clyde.

  8. MistakenTestimony says:


    I am not a Mormon because the BoM is not what it claims to be. Therefore Joe was not a prophet, and with that one keystone removed the whole LDS structure has collapsed. That is why people leave, because the core of your religious system is a lie. All other theological arguments made that presuppose the LDS religion to be true are therefore worthless. Where are the Mormons who leave the religion and still claim that the BoM is true? The collapse is from the bottom up, not the top down.

  9. MistakenTestimony says:


    You said, “So which is it? Is the LDS church hiding things and encouraging people not to study or learn anything? Or do some people simply not make a real effort to study what is available?”

    The former.

    You said, “If you learned things from LDS sources that caused your departure, why are other former members here claiming the church hid those things from them?”

    You are intentionally deceiving here because you of all people know that just because something is an LDS source that does not mean that it is used by the church today. There are many many sources that are entirely ignored and doctrinely rejected by the CES.

  10. falcon says:

    If I remember right, you’re hung-up on the “one true church” scenario which was promoted by Smith. You know, his original question about which “church” he should join and was told (supposedly) not to join any because of the corruptness of their creeds.

    This is where your thinking is off kilter.
    There isn’t anyone here who is talking about joining a church, which is basically what you call becoming a Christian. The problem with your “one true church” is that it doesn’t acknowledge God and in so doing have separated its members from Him.
    The points you bring up are just empty rabbit trails that I won’t go down. My concern is for your immortal soul. Because of this I will “preach” Christ and Him crucified to you, relentlessly.
    Before I got saved I spouted all sorts of objections to Christianity as you have done above. It was merely a way of not confronting the major issue and that was “Who is Jesus?” Until you surrender to Him in faith you’ll continue to tilt at windmills and battle straw men that you erect.

    Do you know what “church” I belong to? None.
    It’s all about Jesus clyde, what He did on the cross, and whether you will accept this sacrifice through faith and by so doing apply His blood to your sins.
    You need to find the authentic Jesus and not the fictitious character promoted by the false church of which you are a member.

  11. falcon says:

    Here’s a video just short of five minutes of an interview with a gentleman who was in a leadership position in the LDS church in Sweden.
    The question of “doubt” is addressed specifically so it’s applicable to our discussion here.


  12. jaxi says:


    It is possible for people to leave the LDS Church by looking at only LDS sources and other historical resources like journals and such and leave Mormonism. You seem to think that because one says that, that can’t mean that the LDS Church is being dishonest or hiding things. Well, we do know they hide things because we do know that there are documents in the LDS Church’s vault that they refuse to be made public. But the bigger issue is that the sources people turn to are semi hard to find mainly because the members dont know what to look for. So that average happy Mormon that thinks they will learn all they need to learn by doingnthings like going to their ward, attending meetings, taking seminary, studying at BYU, will end up assuming the information is given. When they do ask questions from older family members, bishops, and other leaders, missionaries, home teachers, they are given false answers, most likely due to that those member are confused themselves. Yes, Mormons are encouraged to study but study only from LDS Church materials and unless one knows what they are looking for, most studies will not go very deep and will be the same whitewashed stuff that you get out of an LDS book store. I will say that some LDS authors have been more honest in their history lately. I hope it’s a trend that continues. But you have to go out and find those books, the info is not given in church settings, the books not always suggested and are sometimes even warned against. I personally was given warnings by a few members not to read Joseph Smith Rough Stone Rolling.

    You mentioned the talk by Holland. I have a family member who has left the LDS Church recently. They wanted their husband to look at the information. The main reason for her leaving was like Kate, from her own family journals. This started more research she never even thought to look into. All she wanted from her husband was for him to look. Her husband listened to conference and came away from that talk with these thoughts.

    “When those moments come and issues surface, the resolution of which is not immediately forthcoming, hold fast to what you already know and stand strong until additional knowledge comes.”

    He came away from that quote with the interpretation that he should stick to what he already believes and if the Church leaders haven’t given an explanation yet for the troubling things he will wait until they do. This is one line that for him shut down all investigation.

    Here’s another gem, “so if your faith is a little tested in this or any season, I invite you to lean on mine. I know this work is God’s very truth, and I know that only at our peril would we allow doubt or devils to sway us from its path. ”

    He took that to mean, if you doubt, trust your leaders. And they say its true, so it is and don’t worry about all that other stuff. So now he won’t even look into any of his wife’s issues with the LDS CHurch. He was willing to do so until he heard that talk and was also advised against looking by his bishop. If you notice that last line from Holland, which basically means, if you come to any other conclusion than the one I have just given you, you are being swayed by devils. Which is what many people told me when I left. So many don’t even want to look because looking could cause doubt and doubt that leads to any other conclusion is from the devil, so members just avoid it all.

  13. falcon says:

    What is being challenged is Mormonism and whether or not it is true or false. But the first thing a person has to do is define exactly what Mormonism is. There are numerous sects of Mormonism and claiming to have a prophet and a restored gospel. Confusion reigns in Mormonism and the crafty Mormon leader can play on this confusion by supplying answers. The problem with the answers is that they won’t satisfy the questions of the sincere seeker of the truth.
    Mormonism has most of its problems with those who are in one of the sects and who are doubting and starting to ask questions. The leadership can’t bail the water out of the sinking boat fast enough to keep the questioners testimony afloat.
    When it comes to the SLC LDS sect they’ve got the dual challenge of trying to keep information damaging to the cause away from members and nonmembers alike. For the members, once the dominoes start falling there’s no running around putting them back up. There’s just too many of them and they just aren’t fast enough to control the damage that’s been done.

    I have a better way. That is, come to Jesus in faith and in coming to and trusting Him, the Mormon can put away the dead religious system they are trapped in.

  14. jaxi says:


    “I cannot become a christian because in the fourth century church members burned a synagogue down and were told by the Emperor to pay the jews for what they had done. They didn’t.”

    Those Christians were wrong. How do you explain the Mountain Meadows and the cover up by LDS Church leaders? Also, I have read that the reasoning for refusing to rebuild the synagogue given by Ambrose was because there were other buildings and churches that were destroyed by mobs that weren’t being requested to be rebuilt and he was against showing favoritism to the Jews. He was also not opposed to those responsible being punished for their actions. I’m not saying Ambrose was right in this decision. I think they should have offered restitution freely. The mob was certainly wrong and Christianity certainly teaches nonviolence, whether other individuals chose to go against those teachings is on them. But also as Christianity teaches, these people sinned, and we must forgive them. We cannot judge the entire Church (the body of Christ, now or then) by the actions of these few.

    “I cannot see becoming a christian because for a thousand years the bible was not read by the local population.Only the church was able to tell the locals what the bible said.”

    One of the main reasons for this is because there was for a long time no printing press on any kind of large scale. Books of scripture were scarce. Many people were illiterate as well through much of Christian history. Scripture was read verse by verse during services. I know Eastern Orthodox traditon had/ has (depending where you live) services daily. The lay people can/could come hear scripture read on a daily basis. If one owned scripture they were certainly encouraged to read it.

    “I cannot see becoming a christian because of the wars faught between protestant and catholic, pogroms against the jews, and the crusades against the Muslims.”

    This applies to my first response as well. Much of that was done against Christian teaching. Much of it was done for political reasons using Gods name to gain support. It wasn’t right. Christian are called to forgive and to live the truth, follow Christ’s example, not man’s.

    “I cannot become a christian because of all those people who were burned at the stack for being heretics. Is there something really wrong with me or was there christianity back then???????”

    Same thing. Yes, there was something wrong with THESE PEOPLE back then, not with Christianity. Christianity didnt teach for people to do what they were doing. And not all Christians lived this way. You are only looking at a certain group of people calling themselves Christians. You will find that during all these time periods there were also those condemning this sort of activity.

  15. mapleleaf says:

    FoF you said “So which is it? Is the LDS church hiding things and encouraging people not to study or learn anything? Or do some people simply not make a real effort to study what is available?

    If you learned things from LDS sources that caused your departure, why are other former members here claiming the church hid those things from them?”

    FoF – I will be the first to admit that I was an active temple attending mormon. My husband had been a wonderful bishop. We were liked and respected in our ward, stake and community (small mormon town). I was born and raised LDS – pioneer ancestors on both sides of my family. The last person I Ever thought I would see leave the church was myself or my husband – but here we are both of us OUT – by our own free will and choice. I believed what I was taught from birth – so yes call me naive or one of the people who did not make an effort to study what was available until my faith was challenged. Enter into my life a man who my daughter fell in love with who was a (heaven forbid and where did I go wrong to deserve this in my life) Catholic -because I had raised her better than that. Well he had some strange and completely wrong ideas (to me) of what mormons believed, and I was going to prove him wrong. At about the same time I was reading through the journal of one of my pioneer ancestors. In her journal she wrote about a man she knew that was an adulterer that B.Y. ordered to be killed. No big deal he deserved it right? Blew me away – so of course I had to research that accusation. Here is where I started my journey out of the mormon religion and to a real faith in Jesus Christ. It was not an easy journey – it was painful and heartbreaking to find out that the “one true church” that I had put my whole trust in for my whole life could not be trusted. But I could not any longer say that I believed Joseph Smith or Brigham Young to be true prophets of God and if I couldn’t say that then how could I remain a part of this church. It was at this point that I decided to go to the bible – because I was seriously wondering if I could trust it either. So I bought a NIV Bible and began to pray and read. Asking God to show me His truth and His truth alone. As I read that book a whole new understanding of who God is and His love for me filled me. It was an amazing time. It was then that I dared to go web-sites that compared Christianity with Mormonism. Wow who knew that they were so different – I sure didn’t.
    Does the church hide things from the members? Well they sure make it hard to find the truth on what was taught as doctrine in the early years of the church that they don’t agree with now. However, it is there, and can be found as I found it and so have many others. But yes there are many, many others that don’t go looking and there are many that choose to stay even when they do search these things out because they like the values the religion embraces, or can somehow rationalize obvious lies into trivial things that don’t matter. I toyed with this idea of staying as well because the church does so many good things in the world and I knew that I would not be accepted by friends and family once I left – the easy thing would have been to stay and let everyone perceive me as a believer. But once I read the bible and really understood what was at stake – my eternal salvation – I couldn’t stay. Good does not equal truth and God had ripped me out of mormonism by the roots and has replanted me deeply in Christ – I trust in Him alone. He removed the scales from my eyes and gave me ears to hear His truth – there was no way I could stay – even with the good things the mormon church does in the world – they just don’t have the truth. Many good people have been deceived and for many years I was one of them.
    The mormon church is a culture of perceptions. It is how I lived my life as a mormon and how many I know live their life. I could question and doubt all I wanted as long as no one knew it. If I was perceived as having it all together then I was okay. The church wants to be perceived as being Christian, they want to be acceptable to the world and if that means obscuring or trying to hide what was once taught as doctrine then they will.
    Do they encourage the members not to study or learn anything? Anything is a pretty broad word here, so no – I would say that they only want members to study and learn what they want them to – only approved sources. And as an example of how this plays out: I had a dear friend that asked me when I told her I was leaving the church “why – I just don’t understand how you could leave” As soon as I started to talk about some of the things I had learned she said to me “I don’t want to hear it”. I then said to her if you really want to understand where I am coming from then read the New Testament and her reply “I don’t feel a need for that in my life”. This is what mormonism has done to people I love….. They want to be known as Christian but they don’t need the bible? How does that work?

    ps – that man that my daughter fell in love with is now a treasured son-in-law and father of my precious grandson. God works in many different and unexpected ways to draw us to himself and I thank God everyday that He has blessed me to know His truth.

  16. jaxi says:


    Thanks for your story. I am so happy for you and your family. God is Great.

  17. falcon says:

    Score one for the Catholics!
    That’s a joke……………….come on everyone lighten up. You know the falcon’s sense of humor. You also know I was raised Catholic although I’m what you’d call “lapsed”, very lapsed.
    I just love the way God works. He just sort of blows up all of our preconceived notions about how things should be done. I came to Christ as a lapsed Catholic through the efforts of some born again Catholics.
    You might ask why I’m not a practicing Catholic and that’s a real long story. I don’t think it makes a whole lot of difference where someone attends church services or if they don’t attend at all. YIKES!! God cuts me a ton of slack.
    He keeps bringing me back to the basics like who He is, what He has done for me, and the need to be immersed in His Word.
    I couldn’t imagine being trapped in a religious system that is suppose to be designed to transform sinful men into gods like all of the other supposed gods that occupy the universe. It is a trap. It traps people in this life and keeps them from knowing the Living God.
    I know you were a temple Mormon but the whole thing seems spooky to me knowing what I know about the occult nature of the rituals.
    I’m so excited about you and your family coming to Christ.
    Please keep filling-in the details. It keeps me doing this when very often I wonder if we are making an impact.

  18. mapleleaf says:

    I just read a post by a mormon friend – a quote for the upcoming general conference. “If God loves us enough to send us prophets then we need to love him enought to follow them”. I wish they could see that God loves us so much more than that. He gave His son, His son became sin for us that we could have His righteousness. Faith in Him is ALL that is required for salvation. If we could earn our way to heaven then we didn’t need a Saviour who would die in our place all we would need would be the rules. So my dear mormon friend I disagree I would say that if God loves me enough to take my punishment so that I could have His righteousness then I will love Him enough to say thank-you for your amazing grace.
    I imagine that this conference will be the same as all the rest – a lot more of how to make ourselves righteous – very little of Christ and what is of Christ will be how to use him as our ultimate example. I understand now that Christ did not come to set an example for me He came to die in my place. Mormons need to doubt what they are taught, they need to pick up the bible and learn that scripture is not about them it is about God, and what He has done. It is not a set of rules to follow to be saved it is what Christ has already done to save them. He lived every part of the law perfectly in their place -He knew they never could – He did it for them.
    So yes I am saved by works – Christ’s works. He lived the law of Moses, He lived the beatitudes – perfectly. I understand now that I am more sinful than I ever could have imagined but more loved and treasured than I could have ever dared dream – God doesn’t see my sin it is covered by the blood of Christ the debt has been paid in full- I have been set free in Christ. A debt that has been paid in full does not require further payment. What can be added to that – absolutely nothing. Thank you Jesus.

  19. spartacus says:

    To all LDS & FoF,

    You know how you have heard other LDS and thought and said yourself that you wish people who wanted to know about Mormonism would ask a Mormon? How you wish if someone wants to know what you really believe, then they should ask you? How, as they are not a Mormon they should not presume to be able to know everything about Mormonism, let alone understand it?

    Well, at least take your own advice and don’t presume to know everything about leaving Mormonism and why Mormons do it.

    If you want non-mormons to ask mormons for the truth about Mormonism (and presumably believe you as sincere and knowledgeable), then don’t be the hypocrite. If you want to know why people leave the LDS church, since you never have, then ask someone who has left the LDS church (and try to believe them or at least respect them s you want others to believe and respect you.

  20. Clyde6070 says:

    Mike R
    What I was trying to do was to cast doubt.
    Rick B.
    Can you say Haun’s mill.
    You are still believers in Christ. You look at my history and find it lacking. I look at your history and find it lacking. When we question our faith we either strengthen it or lose it.

  21. Mike R says:

    mapleleaf, what a blessing to read your story !

    You’ve exchanged the Mormon “plan” of salvation of working to earn eternal life to become
    exalted Gods and Goddesses , to the simple authentic gospel of salvation that Jesus’ true
    apostles preached . It truly is all about Jesus , not secret temple rituals, and not a prophet .
    Heb 7:25
    May God use you to help the precious Mormon people discover the truth about Jesus .

  22. spartacus says:

    Consistency is a little-thought-about but ever-present issue in our lives. We, as humans, have varying levels of consistency in our lives. But we are all responsible for how much consistency we have in our beliefs and actions.

    There could be a while MC post on consistency.

    Mormons want to be a part of the one and only true church with the one and only true prophet with the one and only true authority, but then they want to decide themselves, through their own personal revelation and understanding what to believe. They even want outsiders to ignore all this authoritative apparatus and ask them, the individual Mormon about Mormonism.

    LDS mormons want to be recognized as Christians, but they refuse to recognize FLDS as Mormons.

    Mormons want the security and assurance of authoritative truth, but they want new authoritative truth to supersede old authoritative truth.

    Mormons want outsiders to ask and believe them about Mormonism, but some Mormons here on MC and elsewhere don’t want to ask, let alone believe and respect, past-mormons about leaving Mormonism.

  23. falcon says:

    Here’s the difference when it comes to the topic of “history”.
    First of all since you claim to be a Christian than you own all of the Christian history too. You can’t have it both ways.
    When we are talking about Mormon history we are talking first and foremost about Joseph Smith and his history. It’s his history that, among other things, prove him to be a liar, a deceiver and a fraud.
    We can take the next Mormon prophet in line Brigham Young and his history. Dare we even have to go there?
    Christianity is built on a foundation of Jesus Christ. Mormonism is built on the foundation of Joseph Smith and the subsequent prophets. It’s this history that proves the religion to be false because the men who led it were jackals and seducers.
    The early off-shoots of the Mormon religion sniffed all of this out early and dumped the model that is used by the LDS system today.
    So if you want to reject Christ because you find fault with people who claimed to be Christians might I remind you of what we always say, “Christ’s Church is perfect but the people aren’t.”
    (Isn’t that what we say?)

  24. spartacus says:

    Do the Christians here have their own consistency issues?

    Of course, we all do.

    But the inconsistency of others does not excuse any of us from ignoring our own.

    Please. Take time to think about this for yourself, personally. Because consistency is a necessary part of truth and meaningfulness. If we want to live lives of truth and meaningfulness, then ALL of us must be honest about our consistency.

    May the God Who Is, the Great I Am, the Ultimate that actually exists bless us all with the regular realization of our consistency and inconsistency, and with His power to overcome. And all Honor and Glory be given Him.

  25. jaxi says:


    Christian history is Christ. If you say Christian history is lacking you claim Christ is lacking. But I guess that makes sense from an LDS perspective. After all, Joseph smith claimed he could do it better than everyone, even Christ. Saying Christian history is lacking is seperating yourself from Christianity. Unless you are going to pinpoint certain times in history 100’s of years after its foundation, and forget that people are responsible for their own free will. What we find lacking in Mormon history is truth, specifically related to its foundation. Remember also, Mormonism is a baby. Weighing the sins of people over 2000 years and comparing it to 200 years is not a good comparison. Rejecting Christianity based on the sins of those who did not follow the Christian message demonstrates your inability to forgive human frailties, and is also problematic in that you expect all Christians to act perfectly. If they could do that we would have no need for Christ. Man’s wickedness does more to prove Christianity true than false. Mormonisms history is problematic because it if founded on a man, who is not trustworthy and not God. Christianity is founded on Christ, Our God, and Savior, the Alpha and Omega. He is the Begining and the end. Not the temporary beginning until someone can do it better.

  26. spartacus says:

    I tried to put this right after my last post but was too late.My lastcomment was directly related to my previous two and directed to nearly all mormons and FoF and all people respectively. Please check them out- it’s about something we all ore ourselves and God.

  27. falcon says:

    Here’s a good example, I guess, of Mormons who don’t study enough. Maybe FOF could tutor them.
    They appear to be the type the LDS church depends on.
    It’s about a seven minute video of a couple who call into Heart Of The Matter. Funny or pathetic? It’s tough to tell.


  28. jaxi says:


    That clip was heartbreaking for me. I have had that same conversation almost word for word with my parents and it ends about the same way too.

  29. mapleleaf says:

    I could use some prayers for tomorrow. I am going to talk with my parents – not sure how it will go.

  30. johnnyboy says:


    I’ll say one for you tonight. Even if it goes really bad, just know that you’ll be ok. I know it’s tough.

    As far as FOF is concerned, he knows that the church has hidden information and continues to hide information. He knows that true church history is not taught. He knows the leaders discourage members from looking. He knows that the majority of members have NO IDEA what FARMS, FAIR, or the Maxwell institute are (or for that matter the journal of discourses). He knows this and yet claims that everyone who is taught at church has only themselves to blame for not knowing where or how to research for info that the church itself discourages members from reading.

    Its a classic game of “how can the church be so secretive when everyone seems to know everything?”

    Well guess what FOF? There’s this new thing called the internet, and the little game that the church used to play back in the good old days of hiding info is long gone. What’s funny is the church is just now waking up to this. They rely on people remaining in their ignorance. Half my ward had no idea that the church had updated the scriptures this past year! Nor did they even really know what had been removed or changed! Or the reasons that church gave for doing so.

    And what’s even funnier is the church can’t even get their reasons straight either! According to the church they recently removed all references to church history from the scriptures because “members didn’t have acces to them”. Well, according to the preface in the Joseph Smith Papers, the history of the church is not being used because it is completely unreliable and inaccurate!

    What’s hilarious is most Mormons (particularly those outside of Utah) have no clue about any of these things. Most of them don’t even know what the Joseph Smith Papers are. Some don’t even know what the “history of the church” is or that it’s an actual set of books!

    Gimme a break.

    I thought I knew most of the weird and hidden things about the church, and I’m STILL finding new stuff that blows my mind!!

  31. PaleRider says:

    Mapleleaf- Our prayers are with you but more importantly God is bringing you to him, so have no fear. A true exodus is happening in the LDS church as countless others are being called by God to come to the truth. I came out to my parents recently as many others have done that contribute to this site so know that you are not alone.

  32. mapleleaf says:

    Thank you for the prayers.

  33. falcon says:

    I prayed for you also specifically that God would give you boldness and His Spirit would lead you.

    I’ve done a lot of thinking about clyde and his assertion that he didn’t want to become a Christian because of some of the things Christian have done through out history.
    I’m astounded that clyde doesn’t seem to get what we’re talking about. We’re not talking about joining some denominational sect. What we’re talking about is clyde coming to a realization of who Jesus is, what His death on the cross encompasses and that obtaining eternal life is by faith in Jesus alone.
    I think I’ve told clyde enough times that all those who come to Jesus in faith are included in the Mystical Body of Christ which knows no denominational boundaries. When we come to Jesus in faith we are born again by the Spirit of God. That’s our spiritual marker.
    God knows those who are His, who He has called, justified and who He is sanctifying.
    Running about some man made temple performing man made rituals does nothing. In the case of Mormons, they don’t even know who God is.

  34. grindael says:

    Can you say Haun’s mill. You are still believers in Christ. You look at my history and find it lacking. I look at your history and find it lacking. When we question our faith we either strengthen it or lose it.

    What does Haun’s Mill have to do with what those that may call themselves “Christians”? In fact, Clyde, list for us each and every person who participated in the Haun’s Mill Massacre and tell us how they believed and why it is relevant to this discussion. Can you do that?

    Also, please tell us how the incidents of some who called themselves Christians in the past has anything to do with others believing Jesus’ teachings in the Bible and living them. Cite for us, any examples or proof you have that no one at all believed and lived the correct teachings of Jesus from let’s say A.D. 90 to 1830.

    Tell us how your chosen “apostles and “prophets” can teach that if just one “priesthood holder” is alive then the church can still be organized and go on, and how it could not with at least three immortal priesthood holders on the earth since A. D. 30. Tell us how Jo Smith could write and it become “scripture” that John the Revelator was granted immortality to “bring souls to Christ” and yet do so without a Church, or any “authority” to do so according to modern Mormon apologists, and that if he did go to the “ten tribes”, where are they and why have we not found them if they are under the polar icecaps or flying on a rock in space as Mormon “prophets” have taught they were?

    Tell us how Christ’s simple promise that he would always be with one or two that believed, was broken or could be broken, and give us definite proof that there were never in 1800 years one or two that believed in Christ.

    I get that you doubt Christ and his promises. That is evident from what you write. But we don’t. That is your problem, as is trying to prove the wacky teachings of Mormon “prophets”.

  35. grindael says:

    If the Church is not putting answers out there where people can find them and rely on OFFICIAL answers, then why did the church send those two priesthood holders to Sweden in 2010? If there was no problem with this, why did the church send those men? Why didn’t they just give the local Bishops the answers and direct the “saints” in Sweden to them? Because NONE OF THEM were “official” answers that is why, and the “answers” that those two priesthood holders gave, were just retreads of Mormon Apology, and not official either. What a joke.

  36. falcon says:

    See knowledge, according to the LDS church, is that which reinforces what they want the member to believe. Anything that might give a person pause, is not acceptable. The problem is that Mormonism can’t stand-up to scrutiny. There’s plenty of information available that the whole program is a ruse. However there are those who just love it. The LDS church provides them with their meaning in life. Take that away without something to replace it and their is really a crisis for the true believer.

  37. MJP says:

    I am trying to figure out the exact relevance to the following comment to the topic at hand, but I think there is something here.

    In church this morning, my pastor made three comments that I think dispel Mormon myths concerning Christianity. (The message was a discussion on the parables of the mustard seed and the yeast in the dough in Matt 13.) The first is that he hopes all the Christian churches in my town excel and make a positive difference in our community and the world. He’s rooting for them all, regardless of denomination. Second, the driving factor in all of that is that Jesus is the moving piece– not the churches themselves. Jesus works in all of the traditional Christian churches, and what matters is that people put their faith in Him, not in a given church. Third, the church is not perfect. He even apologized to guests expecting a perfect church, because they would not find it there. What’s perfect is Jesus, not any given church.

    Now, how do I think all of this is relevant to how a Mormon is to react when he finds he may be deceived? Well, it matters in that faith is to go into Jesus, not a church. It matters that no given church is better than any other, as long as they worship the true Jesus. It matters that a church puts Jesus in control, not any church. It matters that no church is perfect– only Jesus is perfect.

    I’ve seen a theme within Mormonism that its a big sin to deny the Mormon church. I don’t know if they view this a bigger problem than denying Jesus, but denying the church, questioning the church, and asking questions about the church does not seem well tolerated. When the LDS claim their church is the restored and true church, such an attitude about their church makes sense. Denying their church can be seen as denying Christ. I get all of that, but at what point, I ask LDS, does the church become more important than Jesus?

  38. Kate says:


    Do you know what led up to Haun’ s mill? Can you say the battle of crooked river or Samual Tarwater or the burning and looting of Galatin by the Mormons or the war of 1838? You see, I was brainwashed with Haun’ s mill too. Never once was I told about what led up to that. The Mormons were giving as good as they were getting. In fact I believe they did more to cause what happened than the Missourians. You need to research outside of LDS.org.

  39. Kate says:

    Here’s a short little video about Haun’s mill on LDS.org. FOF blames everyone but the LDS church for Mormons not knowing church history. The information in this video is not only inaccurate it ‘s outright lies by omission. This is how Mormons are taught. Is it any wonder we are shocked and outraged when we learn the truth?


  40. johnnyboy says:



  41. grindael says:


    You make good points about Haun’s Mill, but I would like to make a couple of more. There was no excuse for the Missourians to do what they did. NONE. But the Mormons had a bad habit of blaming everything on “Sectarian Christians” as they called them. There is little proof of this, but it was still done throughout the Mormon experience from the 1820’s to Jo’s death in the mid 1840’s and beyond. In fact, the very first “persecution” that Jo got was not from the Christians, but from his fellow “moneydiggers” who came after him about his supposed discovery of “gold plates” that Jo cut them out of. In fact, in 1830 when the Presbyterians visited Lucy Smith and her family for being inactive for 18 or so months, there was no talk of persecution, only of Jo’s disdain for those that were visiting, Lucy mentioning how Jo “prophecied” how evil Deacon (I believe) Jessup (or something like that – doing this from memory) was – not to the Smith’s, but supposedly to other Christians. In fact here are a few of Lucy’s comments about Christians from her book,

    I was acquainted with one Deacon Davis a man of exceeding piety …(Dan Vogel, Early Mormon Documents, p. 241)

    Lucy knew him in Vermont…

    Here is what young Jo said, when Lucy, Hyrum, Sophriana, and William wanted to join the Presbyterians,

    Joseph also said I do not want to to keep any of you from joining any church you like you will not stay with them long for you are mistaken in them you do not know the wickedness of their hearts[.] (Vogel, Early Mormon Documents, p. 307.)

    It was obviously Jo who had all the problems with them, else why would Lucy (and the rest of the Smith family (except the moneydiggers Jo Jr. & Sr.) still join Jessup’s congregation in 1824 and go to that church for years? It wasn’t until later, when it all came out about the moneydigging that Jessup signed, with the rest of Palmyra nearly, an affidavit attesting to the bad habits of the Smith family who chose Jo and his moneydigging over their church.

    Jo’s “persecution” in NY was directly due to his moneydigging involvement. Then, in Ohio, it was again, not from the Christians, but from his own followers that the “persecution” continued, in 1832 with his tarring and feathering (due in part because of allegations of Jo trying to seduce Marinda Johnson (Hyde) who he later secretly married after sending Orson on a mission. It was also due to land speculation and a failed “anti-bank” that Jo started, and most of it came from Mormons themselves, among them Martin Harris who broke with Jo at this time and declared that the witnesses to the Book of Mormon (including himself) never saw the plates with their “natural” eyes.

    Then we get to Missouri. Jo wrote down his revelations and one of them was that the Mormons had the right to “consecrate the riches of the Gentiles” to themselves because it was the “promised land”. Jo later changed the wording of this “revelation”. He also spoke of redeeming “Zion” by force, and lots of other violent rhetoric. As soon as Jo fled Kirtland, he went to Missouri and deposed David Whitmer and his brother and John Corrill, the Presidency in Missouri, and you have the whole “dissenter” problem, again, internal. Then there was the voting problem and the perceived problems with free blacks. Little of it had to do with religion, it had to do with Smith’s megalomania.

    Were those Missourians who participated in Haun’s Mill culpable? Yes. They did something truly horrific. But Jo had ordered the Mormons to attack State Militia, and had “Captn. Fearnaught”, or David Patten, do it for him. Patten died, and the Mormons then raided and set fire to Gallatin. In fact, the Mormons were finally starting to get along well with the Missourians under David Whitmer’s Presidency in Clay County until Jo got there after being leaving Kirtland in the middle of the night to avoid prosecution by the law. It was only after he arrived in the spring of 1838 and sacked Whitmer on trumped up charges that the problems began anew. The Whitmer’s stayed in Missouri and never had a problem, and David Whitmer even became the Mayor of Richmond for a couple of years. Why did Whitmer, who believed in the BOM and taught it openly have NO PROBLEMS getting along with the Missourians? Because Jo had moved on to Illinois, where he started up the whole cycle once again, and divided his church over polygamy, ordaining himself a King and political aspirations.

    Who is deceived here? The Mormons who today believe the whitewashed history that the Church has re-written and dupes current members with. For example, here is their take on Jo’s assault in 1832:

    Explain that Joseph Smith suffered persecution from many people. Ministers of other religions, strangers, and even some of his friends were unkind to him. He had to decide whether to let this unfair treatment make him angry and unhappy or to be forgiving to these people.

    Historical Account

    Teach the children about Joseph Smith’s reaction to those who persecuted him, as illustrated by the following historical account. Display the pictures at appropriate times.

    Soon after the Church was organized, some of the members began to apostatize, or leave the Church….

    Notice the lead in. This had noting to do with “other religions”, and of course, they say that, so why put that in before the account begins? And the attack had NOTHING TO DO WITH EZRA BOOTH or what he wrote. So here we have more lies and obfuscation by the Church. It certainly was “apostates” that tarred Smith, but it was led by Simmons Ryder, and had nothing to do with Ezra Booth.

  42. Kate says:


    Unbelievable. Thanks for the information. I didn’t mean to come across as saying that Mormons deserved that in any way. I was just taught that they did nothing and were persecuted and that Haun’s Mill happened for no reason. There were atrocities on both sides. Mormons weren’t the innocents they are portrayed to be. I learned about the war of 1838 from a book my Pastor let me borrow. It was written by a BYU historian. At least he was more honest than his church.
    I just learned this year that most of the persecution Mormons went through was actually done by other Mormons. That is not what I was taught.
    The LDS church claims to be upfront about it’s history, then puts videos on it’s official website like the one I linked to. I’m so thankful to be out of this mind controlling cult.

  43. johnnyboy says:


    I’m waiting for you to write a book on all this!

    Seriously though, I would love to see someone put together a weekly blog update that chronicles a “true Mormon history” from the beginning. A blog that could give a decent timeline to it all that could provide a side by side narrative of lds org vs what really happened.
    I’m also interested in looking into some books that would provide similar info. I’m familiar with some of the more typical books like rough stone rolling etc, but could anyone maybe give their top ten” list of books”?
    Sometimes it’s good to just grab a book rather than scouring the Internet. Although, I gotta admit that I spent a good amount of time yesterday on the sidneyrigdon.com site reading articles written by his son. Fascinating stuff. Oh, and my wife just discovered the film that talks about the churches secret “values institute” therapy for gays back in the 1970’s. Monson and Oaks oversaw the whole project. They had boys as young as 15 (whose parents were not informed) being forced to watch gay porn while electro shocking their genitals and hooking them up to a machine that would make them vomit. Then they made them watch straight porn while pumping them full of euphoric drugs. None of these kids had even seen pornography before in their lives.
    Christ’s one and only true church. Yippee!

  44. johnnyboy says:


    I’m curious where you think it’s ok for Christ’s true church to shock little boys genitals and force feed them porn without their parents consent. All of this was paid for with tithing money.

    Is this really the church you want to be a part of? Really?

  45. grindael says:


    (My name is Johnny too, so by all means call me that). I’m working on several projects, and trying like hell to get my Characters Article segments finished for my blog. I keep getting caught up in ongoing discussions I’m having along with doing Art constantly now. I just finished a nice piece with Martin Harris and Charles Anthon, (Harris showing Anthon the “Caractors”) and am currently working on a young Jo Smith with his white stovepipe hat, which is almost finished. It gets hard, cause I draw when I’m in the mood, which isn’t often these days, and it diverts me from writing. I’m working on a book about Adam God. But I have 13 Historical Articles in various stages of completion, which deal with the First Vision, the Tarring of Jo and Sidney, the Missouri problems, Adam God, Mitt Romney, Wilford Woodruff, and one I’m going to submit to Dialogue about Woodruff’s mission to the Isleta Indians in New Mexico, (the Pueblo Indians they are sometimes called), and the tie in to the Lamanite Doctrine about the last days and how it became a huge failure. So I’m busy. I’ll think about that top ten list, but I would recommend buying this CD, it will keep you very busy, also read back issues of The Messenger (UTLM), Sandra even published one of my articles there.

  46. johnnyboy says:


    Hahaha. I read all your stuff. I’ve been to your blog and I even tried adding you on Facebook! I knew you were a Johnny cus I saw one of your old posts on here before you started using grindael. So I Internet stalked you a bit and found all your other stuff (love the art). I even stumbled upon some of your posts on mormo discussions. I try to stick with this blog mainly because the research is more in depth and respectful and the arguments are well thought out. Obviously I read mrm and Mormon think. I also check out the interpreter just for laughs.

    Thanks for the links. I will look it up.
    Back in the pre-Internet days I read a few things by the tanners, but I always felt guilty cus of the Mormon shame of reading truth. I love Sandra tanner now. That lady is quite the smart cookie

  47. johnnyboy says:


    Just read your utlm article on the Rocky Mountain prophecy.
    Classic folklore becoming doctrine. I think every single article from fair or farms that uses “history of the church” for any reference or citation should immediately be deleted or thrown out. History of the church is a proven fraud and is not reliable at all. It just shines a big light on how the LDS church operates in rewriting its own history.

    But maybe it’s a good thing that it exists so lurkers out there can see for themselves the truth against the fiction.

  48. grindael says:


    I am very leery about who I add on FB. I spent half of 2012 blocked from posting because of vindictive Mormons. I never now, post in open forums. Send me a request and I’ll add you. My art is a work in progress. I decided after I became injured and could not paint anymore to do all my art on the computer. I bought a drawing tablet and hated it. So I draw with a regular mouse. I’ve had to retrain myself, and I’ve been getting better and better at it, but still have a ways to go before I’ll be satisfied…

  49. johnnyboy says:


    I figured as much. I sent you a request about a month ago.. I will re-send it.

    As far as tablets and such, I have a bunch of friends that work in animation and illustration at disney and some other big companies… I would highly recommend giving some of the apps for ipad a try. There are even really good stylus pens now that are very fine point. I don’t know how your injuries affect your painting or drawing specifically, but apps like layers, sketchbook pro, and paper(by 53) are all pretty amazing. I know that the ipad coming out next month will be almost half the weight of the current model, which is significant for artists. I have an ipad 3 and its pretty heavy, so I am intrigued to see what some of my artist friends will make of the new model when it comes out. Most of them use either an ipad 3 or 4 now. They have all tried other tablets and none really come close to the iPad, unless it is a huge table/touch interface. One guy I know who worked at Don Bluth’s company has one of those beastly tables.. and it is ridiculously cool to see how it works.

    anyhoo… hit me up on Facebook yo!

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