In a day and age when so many people seem to get offended by so many things, we need to realize that this modern-day phenomenon has its roots in insecurity. No matter what stance you take on anything, SOMEONE will get offended. If I was pro-choice, the pro-lifers would be offended at my beliefs. Since I am pro-life, the pro-choicers would be offended and ridicule what I think. If I was a Democrat, Republicans would think I would be aloof. If I was a Republican, some Democrats would think I would be out-of-touch. If I was a Mormon, non-Mormons would criticize me. If I was not a Mormon, Mormons would say that I’m not in the one and only true Church, and thereby, I would be in the wrong in their eyes.
Everyone has an opinion. Okay, I get it. This is true. But what is the measuring stick for Truth? As Christians, we believe that the Bible (Old and New Testaments) is the Truth, and the Word of God. You see, the Apostle Paul outlines the use of scripture in the Bible as the following (2 Timothy 3:16):
1. All of it is given by God.
2. Profitable for doctrine.
3. Profitable for reproof (chastening)
4. Profitable for correction (this one can often offend us, but it is true!)
5. Given for instruction in righteousness.
In this society where people like to think that Truth is relative, people often don’t want to confront and don’t want to be confronted themselves. After all, who enjoys hearing that they are wrong? If we turn to God’s chastening, He tells us that wisdom will come and will make her (wisdom’s) words known to you. (Proverbs 1:23)
Psalm 14:1 says, “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.”
Talk about not getting offended! It can be so easy to get offended when reading that. There is no one that does good? Well, even if we try to fill our lives with every good work, there is still no one (but God) who does good! An atheist could easily get offended at the above scripture, after all, the Bible says they are fools for not believing in God!
What does God say about an angel who brings another gospel?
Paul says in Galatians 1:8, “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.”
Read verse 9. Paul says this AGAIN, driving home the necessity for the people to really hear what he is saying and how important it is for the people to know that they should not follow another gospel given by an angel (which is exactly what Mormonism is).
Verse 9 reads, “As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed!” This is harsh language! This is not saying that Mormons are cursed, it is saying that the messenger of this false gospel is cursed! God loves Mormons, as He does all of His other creations. Jesus died for every Mormon on the planet. He loves them and cherishes them. God loves the Mormons because He died for them and because He sees them as amazing people!
When it comes to Mormonism and Christian churches, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was the first to fire the first shot of opposition to the other. This happened when “Heavenly Father” and “Jesus Christ” supposedly showed up to Joseph Smith in the woods to tell him that none of the churches were true and that their creeds and teachings were abominations before Him. (see Joseph Smith–History 1:17-19)
So when Mormons get frustrated when the Christian community reaches out to them, they must realize that the LDS took the first shot, calling the other illegitimate, full of false teachings. Also, the LDS Church has 85,000+ missionaries in the field around the world knocking on Christians’ doors, telling them that they are wrong. So when Christians reach out to Mormons, often times Mormons can get frustrated and don’t realize the double standard they have when they think it is silly when Christians try to tell them the truth in love.
As a matter of fact, we are commanded by Jesus Christ to tell people the good news, in love. We were commissioned to go out into the world to make disciples of men and women (Matt. 28), fishers of men!
People may think, “Well, you can’t judge Mormons! We are not supposed to judge people! That’s not nice. Jesus is our judge.” Well, of course Jesus is our judge! We are not judging Mormons, for we don’t know their hearts and motives, and we don’t war against flesh and blood, but against spiritual principalities and powers of the air. Ephesians 6:12 (NIV) says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
Read Matthew 7:4-6. If you try to correct your brother, but you don’t first see the problem with yourself, you have to deal with your own problem first. In this passage, Jesus never says NOT to correct your brother, BUT, to FIRST deal with your OWN problem, THEN correct your brother!
In John 7:24 (KJV) , Jesus himself said, “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” It does not say that we aren’t supposed to judge at all, but that we need to judge righteously!
Of course we need to stand up for the Truth!
When I went to Utah this past March, I bought a book from Deseret Book called Teachings of the Prophet Smith. It is really nice to have the actual sources, so that Latter-day Saints don’t think you’re just using what they call “Anti-Mormon” literature. So, go right to the LDS Church’s own writings, because you can find the incriminating stuff there. This is a collection of writings and teachings from the Prophet Joseph Smith, compiled by Joseph Fielding Smith, one of Joseph Smith’s successors.
On page 119, Joseph Smith says:
The Prophet’s Answer to Sundry Questions
I answered the questions which were frequently asked me, while on my last journey but one from Kirtland to Missouri, as printed in the Elders’ Journal, Vol. 1, Number II, pages 28 and 29, as follows:
First–‘Do you believe the Bible?’
[Answer]: 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.
Second–‘Wherein do you differ from other sects?’
[Answer]: In that we believe the Bible, and all other sects profess to believe their interpretations of the Bible, and their creeds.
Third–‘Will everybody be damned, but Mormons?’
[Answer]: Yes, and a great portion of them, unless they repent, and work righteousness.
If Mormons can say that Christians are casting them to hell, Mormonism doesn’t do any better at not pointing the finger, and if anything, started pointing the finger in the first place. This is not a game, and we shouldn’t be pointing fingers and judging people, but we do need to judge doctrines and teachings, for if we didn’t, how could we even say that we believe something to be true but then not declare what we believe not to be true? Obviously the truth speaks for itself, for in this fallen world, falsehoods exist, deception is real, and twistedness is out there.
Look at a deceptive marriage. If the husband is unfaithful, there is deception. Is it wrong to call it out?
In such a basic example as marriage, you can apply the same concept to religion. If a religion, sect, or cult is leading people astray because of their deception, are we just sitting on the sidelines, or are we going to be bold and faithful saints who are actively living our lives as our pulpits, loving people around us and correcting false doctrine when it seeps in?
Why did Paul give instructions for qualifications for bishops in 1 Timothy and warnings to churches to beware of the doctrines of certain people if we were just supposed to not even say anything that could offend them?
In Revelation 2:15, God says that he hates the doctrine of the Nicolaitans. “So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.” If God can hate anything that doesn’t come from Him, that is totally understandable! We should despise false teachings as well, though this should not manifest in a hatred of people themselves, but of uncomely, unholy, and adulterated teachings that do not originate from our Father in Heaven.
Hold fast to the Bible, fellow Christians, and love Mormons, for Jesus loves them no less than He loves you and me.