Would you vote for a Mormon for President?

Mitt RomneyLooking ahead to the 2008 presidential election, conservatives do not have an easy choice.  The Democrat frontrunners are all liberals, and so are most of the Republican leaders (Guliani, McCain, etc.).  Outside of a long-shot, like Congressman Duncan Hunter, the most promising candidate is Mitt Romney, the Governor of Massachusetts.  He is conservative, attractive and has lots of crossover appeal.  The problem?  Mitt Romney is a Mormon.

I don’t think I would have a problem voting for a conservative who is a Catholic or member of any other Christian religion.  The problem is that Mormonism (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) is a really strange cult.  They teach that all of us can become gods through the process of exaltation, and that we must be “worthy” to enter their temples.  And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. 

Could you vote for Governor Romney for President, even if he was running against a liberal, pro-abortion, pro-gay democrat?

193 Responses to Would you vote for a Mormon for President?

  1. Bruce S. says:

    Sure. It is very possible. On this one I side with Martin Luther who said that he would rather have a wise Turk than a dumb Christian running the civil side of things.

    So, all things considered, I would have to consider all things to see who is really the dumb one.

  2. RubeRad says:

    Sure, why not? Do you think that a mormon president would be a cause for greater (more successful) Mormon evangelism, or more public legitimacy? Would a Mormon in the White House be more or less destructive to Christianity than Bill Clinton? I would probably vote for a pro-life Muslim vs. a liberal, pro-abortion, pro-gay democrat.

    The really interesting question is one you have raised before though: how easily would the democrats steal the white house if they could come up with a pro-life candidate?

  3. Daniel B says:

    Most Mormon’s I have met are completely ignorant of Mormon doctrine and theology as well as current events and political knowledge. They are baisically the same as most (cough) rank and file in churches today. (not that I am asserting their salvation is genuine I am referring to their political mores). It wouldn’t hurt my spiritual conscience to vote for a Mormon any more than it hurts my spiritual conscience to watch Orielly or listen to Hannity (neither of whom do i belive are evangelical Christians). In fact until W came along I don’t think there has been any genuine believers as president during my lifetime. But it doesn’t really matter who I vote for president anyways, I’m in California so all 52 of our votes go to Hillary.

  4. Thanks for reminding me of Bill Clinton, the Southern Baptist, and disciple of Bill Hybels.

    I’ve really struggled with this, but, right now, I lean toward voting in the Mormon over the liberal. The only other option would be voting for my cousin’s favorite lost cause, 3rd party candidate, Paroutka, and totally wasting a vote.

  5. Echo_ohcE says:

    While I would have no inherent reason not to vote for a Mormon (siding entirely with Bruce siding with Luther), I think it’s a good reason to vote in the primaries. What’s wrong with Rudy Guiliani? That guy did great things for New York, and I thought he exercised some excellent leadership during the 911 stuff.

    But I mean, seriously, we should not have too high of expectations for the presidency. All we really need them to do is keep the world off our backs and keep Congress in check. They really don’t have much power beyond that. We’re not going to see someone with genuine Christian values in the White House. We’re not going to see anyone use the office to encourage people to faith in Christ. All we want them to do anyway is pursue justice for all. The presidency is not a pulpit. Nor, of course, is the pulpit political.

    What we need from the president is someone who will veto the outrageous liberals in Congress who continually push our country towards socialism, and someone who will fight the war on terror. That’s it.

  6. You didn’t light up a victory cigar when Bush signed the partial-birth abortion ban? Don’t you think it’s better for the country to have a President who fears God? (and isn’t trying to become one?)

  7. I am a conservative first, republican second. If the democrats nominated a pro-life, pro-family candidate who would continue the war on terror, I would vote for him in a heartbeat.

  8. Brad says:

    Daniel

    How old are you? If you don’t know that that Ron Reagan (despite what his wife did) was a genuine believer you haven’t read enough biographies of him or listened to his son Michael speak of him. I also think Carter, liberal though he was/is was a believer. So again, how old are you?🙂

    Brad

  9. RubeRad says:

    Didn’t Daniel just turn 14? I seem to recall him recently saying he doesn’t have a car…

  10. Daniel B says:

    Brad, I do agree that Michael Regan is a true believer (I would vote for him), but I was never completely convinced by what I read about Ronald. Carter was the president the first few months of my life, but I have serious doubts about his faith. I am guilty of being too judgmental. I’m sorry

  11. Sorrry, Daniel. I’m afraid you are misinformed on this one. Every biography and all of his close friends confirm his faith in Christ. And we have never had a greater friend in the White House than Ronald Reagan. I miss him greatly.

  12. Ben says:

    PEROUTKA! PEROUTKA!
    Seriously, though. What has GWB done for Christians beyond paying them lip service?

  13. Ben says:

    A question occurred to me as I was watching MSNBC last night (I like Chris Matthews, despite the fact that he was paired with the loathsome Keith Olberman). Who would be my all-start election night lineup?

    Chris Matthews
    George Will
    Tucker Carlson
    Juan Williams
    and Jon Stewart for comic relief

  14. Brad says:

    It’s the day after and I’m listening to the Diane Reems show on NPR. She has on E.J. Dionne and Dick Armey. Jim, Armey’s a Texan isn’t he? I am very impressed. I’d never heard him speak before. Lots of commonsense and very frank declarations of his faith in God. Seems like a good man.

    Brad

  15. Renee Wilson says:

    We’ve been studying the Mormon religion recently and I’m not sure I could vote for a Mormon for President. It would take a great deal of Godly enlightenment to make that choice. I’m agree that Mr. Reagon was one of the greatest President in our lives, and President Bush needs to look deep into his Master’s life and word before celebrating any more Ramadahns (sp) in the white house, He is suppose to be a Christian, celebrate his heritage and his God of Christian faith and life. This is what the nation and all of the world needs to see. I pray for our President and his staff daily, we must continue to pray for our leadership even more now, as the Democrats represent our Nation. We must be faithful to our God, our Lord and Saviour!

  16. Ben, you don’t remember Bush signing the partial-birth abortion ban?

    You forgot my foxnews favorites, Fred Barnes and Michael Barone. Tucker lost my respect when he joined “Dancing with the Stars”, and Chris Matthews is a shameless shill for the libs. No, I’m afraid it’s foxnews for our family.

    Brad, Dick Armey is a good guy, but not a national figure. He makes stupid political mistakes (like calling Barney Frank “Barney Fag”), and he is not a particularly attractive candidate.

    In Texas, I like Congressman Henry Bonilla, a rising Hispanic conservative star.

  17. Renee, you put your finger on one of my disappointments with President Bush (and they are few). He also said that Islam is a religion of peace. I know the President represents all Americans, but at some point, you’ve got to stand up for truth and let the chips fall where they may.

  18. Ben says:

    I know Matthews slants left, but he’s not a shill. He asks tough questions of everyone. I just can’t stand most of the Fox personalities. They are hopelessly in bed with the Republican party. I like Barone though.

    The partial-birth ban is nothing. It should be a given. It’s token legislation to make us think he really cares about the abortion issue.

    Ben

  19. One of the few bright spots last night was Lieberman sticking it to the nutty left and that empty suit, Ned Lamont. Console yourselves with this hilarious video, Memories with Ned Lamont

  20. Brad says:

    Jim

    Interesting bringing up the “Barney Fag” comment. A caller from New Hampshire called in and instead of asking any questions went off on a rant on Armey because of the “Barney Fag” remark. This was Armey’s response, my paraphrase as best as I can remember it.

    “It never happened and I never said it. If you want the truth read ??’s article/Book ? (the transcript will probably be available at NPR tomorrow.) on it. If it had been said, either on purpose or as a Fruedian slip it would have been a reprehensible thing to say and I would have to apologize for it. But since I never said I damn well am not going to apologize.” It wouldn’t have cost him anything to apologize at this date, far removed from the alleged incident. So I tend to believe him.

    Had you heard this, and do you believe him?

    Brad

  21. This was a big deal at the time it was said, so I tend not to believe him. I never saw a denial or a refutation, but I would be interested to be linked to his proof.

  22. Would any of you vote for Condoleezza Rice if she ran?

  23. RubeRad says:

    Absolutely. Condy rocks. Also, I have a pet theory that the first minority or woman elected president will be Republican. A minority Democrat candidate would not pull in the Republican vote as much as a minority Republican candidate would pull in Democrats.

    The concept holds exactly in converse for a pro-life Democrat, which would be a slam-dunk presidential winner right now — I don’t know why the Democrats can’t see this!

  24. RubeRad says:

    BTW, back to the original topic, what’s worse in the white house, a Mormon who doesn’t believe Jesus is really God, or a liberal Christian who doesn’t believe Jesus is really God?

  25. I see what you’re saying, but there is something so bizarre and so demonic about the Mormon religion that i literally gives me the chills thinking about an LDS in the White House. Have you ever looked into Morminism comprehensively? It is pretty scary stuff.

  26. Does anybody know where Condy Rice comes down on social issues like abortion, gay marriage and whether Christians should have lunch at Hooters? Somewhere I heard that she’s not a social conservative.

  27. RubeRad says:

    If Condy got a job as a waitress, I might consider lunch at Hooters…

    And speaking of Bush’s partial-birth abortion ban, …

  28. Echo_ohcE says:

    Wow, I didn’t realize Bush had such close ties to “Catholics and Evangelicals Together.” Yuck. Standing in unity with the Roman Church is like holding hands with the devil.

  29. Echo_ohcE says:

    Here’s a question: isn’t it odd that people are beginning to talk about a Mormon running for president when there’s this business with that guy on trial? What’s his name? I can’t remember. Anyway, they’re accusing him of basically forcing young girls to get married to first counsins and stuff. Some on the news talk about it as if it’s thinly veiled rape. They force the teenage girls to marry who the adults choose, and then the man “rapes” his new bride on his wedding night. Now, before I was married, I didn’t think it would be possible for a man to “rape” his wife. Now I’m married, and I realize that your wife isn’t an inanimate object. She is a person, made in the image of God. Yes, you have rights with regard to her, but you don’t want to force something like that. It seems like there would be something wrong with that. Especially if she didn’t want to get married in the first place.

    But anyway, isn’t it interesting that this happens now? I wonder – if the guy gets convicted, will they call this governor guilty by association in order to discredit him? I would put nothing past the Clintons. This far out from the election, I’m probably the only one who’s thinking like that. Oh well.

  30. madatstupidity says:

    MORMONS DO NOT BELIEVE IN PILIGAMY YOU STUPID! STUPID! PEOPLE THAT THINK YOU KNOW EVERYTHING. YOU ARE SO IGNORANT IT MAKES ME SICK. SO ONE “SO CALLED” MORMON PRACTICES SUCH A THING AND SO YOU THINK THEY ALL DO?? GROW UP STUPID PEOPLE. HEY WHAT ABOUT THE MANY CATHOLIC AND CHRISTIANS, METHODISTS, AND ISLAMS AND MUSLIMS AND JEWS AND EVERY OTHER SCREWED UP RELIGION ON THIS EARTH??, hey they all have screwed up people in them, but it doesn’t mean that everyone in that religion does the same thing and that is what the religion is based on now does it???NO– STUPID PEOPLE–. WAKE UP!!!!!!!! NO ONE IS SUPPOSE TO JUDGE ANOTHER, but no one can UNDERSTAND THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!LET PEOPLE CHOOSE TO BELIEVE IN WHAT THEY WANT!!! IT ALL COMES DOWN TO YOU AND GOD>>NO ONE ELSE>LEAVE OTHER PEOPLE ALONE IN WHAT THEY BELIEVE>>YOU HAVE NO IDEA IF YOU ARE RIGHT IN YOUR OWN BELIEF ANYWAYS>>NO ONE REALLY DOES AND YOU WILL NEVER KNOW TRUTH UNTIL YOU DIE. SO SHUT UP AND LET PEOPLE LIVE.

  31. Wow. Upset, much? Did you know that Mormonism’s founding leaders were all polygamists? Does that bother you? Do you know that the Mormons teach that we may still have multiple wives in eternity? Does that bother you? Did you know that Mormons teach “exaltation”, which tells us that we can all become gods someday? Is that a little disturbing to you?

  32. madatstupidity says:

    I understand what you are talking about to be not true the way you see it, no it doesn’t bother me. You have no idea what you are talking about. Just leave it alone.

  33. madatstupidity says:

    You “Albino Hayford” don’t need to concern yourself with other peoples beliefs, and try to prove they are wrong, why do you? Who CARES?????? who cares what you think if you don’t care what others think? Stop acting ignorant and trying to be all righteous in what you believe to be untrue. Live your own life the way you see fit, no ones trying to tell you you are wrong in what you believe in. No one should judge you when it comes to matters between you and God. No one is going to make you a Polygimist just because they are….see what I mean.

  34. madatstupidity says:

    you dont understand what you preach against.

  35. Either we can become gods or we can’t. Either polygamy is a good, lawful practice or it is not. Either Joseph Smith is a prophet sent from God or he is a false prophet. These things do matter, because they determine our eternal destiny.

    Nobody “lives their life as they see fit” without judging. That’s why we have laws and policemen and prisons. Some things are right and some things are wrong.

    If millions of people believe a lie, we should do everything we can to show them that they are believing a lie.

  36. madatstupidity says:

    You have faith in something or you don’t. You are given free agency to choose what you believe to be true or not. Who made you the KNOWER of all TRUTH?????

  37. madatstupidity says:

    YOU AREN”T THE ONE TO TELL PEOPLE THEY ARE BELIEVING IN A LIE. OK??

  38. madatstupidity says:

    I’m done. I have better things to do.

  39. Daniel B says:

    I have no idea what madastupidity is talking about or why he/she is so angry.

    start by answering a simple question… What are you upset about? The fact that certain people believe that other peoples beliefs are offensive? Aren’t you then just doing the same thing?

  40. madatstupidity says:

    I never said that what he believes is wrong. I just wish people wouldn’t talk about a religion and it’s beliefs if they don’t really understand it. Enough said.

  41. Daniel B says:

    I am pretty sure he (Albino) understands it better then 90% of it’s adherents. I think maybe it is you who don’t understand the mormon beliefs.

    Maybe if you read some books about true Mormon theology you wouldn’t be angry with someone who just points out their beliefs and says, “this is what they beleive”. I guess it’s not authoratative enough it is comes on a blog, but he isn’t saying anything untrue about mormon theology. why do you suppose you know more then Him?

  42. madatstupidity says:

    again- ignorant people who think they know everything about something that they dont understand. Yah I don’t know more than someone about Mormonism who doesn’t belong to the Church or understand what is behind the theology. Ok…. You win buddy.

  43. Daniel B says:

    So you assume you know more then him because you are mormon? That’s a logical conclusion. And of course to you this conversation would have more value than it would to anyone else on teh thread because it questions your beliefs. For that reason you should be very interested to hear what you might not know about mormonism, because if you did know it then maybe you wouldn’t be so angry when people point out what your own religion has taught. You are really angry at yourself more than you are at someone else. It’s like someone that telling you your fat and then you going crazy and getting mad at them and yelling, “you’re ignorant!you don’t know what fat is! Let people live the way they want to live!” all the while you ignore the realy problem , which is Mormon theology.

  44. JCW says:

    The real problem is people like you Daniel.

  45. danielbalc says:

    What? I don’t understand? what’s your problem with me JCW?

  46. danielbalc says:

    What? I don’t understand? what’s your problem with me JCW?

    Have you blindly characterized me as a bigot? You don’t know me at all. Take the time to read my comments or my blog. I have said I would vote for Mitt Romney (mormon), and I don’t have a problem with Keith Ellison (Muslim) taking his oath on the Koarn.

    Why don’t I have a problem with these guys? Because they are theologically ignorant of what their religions teach. Thus they are the same as a Christian who is theologically ignorant. I’m on your side JCW. I support you people who don’t know what you believe. But I don’t support you when to attack the messangers who inform you of your beleifs. Just because someone knows more than you about something doesn’t make them wrong. I think by defnition that makes them, um lets see here, right.

    Consequently, Romney and Ellison know more than I do about governing so I support and pray for them. If I just so happen to know more about their crazy religions than they do how does that make me the, “real problem”?

  47. toallwhoread says:

    ” the future of this world has long been declared; the final outcome between good and evil is already known. There is absolutely no question as to who wins because the victory has already been posted on the scoreboard. The only really strange thing in all of this is that we are still down here on the field trying to decide which team’s jersey we want to wear!”
    ( team- is referring to good or evil– not a religion by the way, to those who would interpret what they read in a wrong often, like doctrine for example)

    Mormons believe in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and that he died on the cross for all the worlds sins, afflictions, temptations, pains…and everything bad thing that we do.

    Mormons aren’t weird really…..if you took the time to really wholeheartidly study and listened with real intent. It isn’t a cult or an evil religion. Only pure hearts can know that.

    What really is wrong here? Why is their a problem with being a Mormon to a non-Mormon?

    Why can’t a Mormon be a President?

  48. Daniel B says:

    “Mormons aren’t weird really…..if you took the time to really wholeheartidly study and listened with real intent. It isn’t a cult or an evil religion. Only pure hearts can know that.”

    If I take the time to wholeheartedly study and listen with real intent and don’t come to that same conclusion (that it’s not evil) does that mean I have in unpure heart?

    the problem with being a mormon is that you think you believe in Jesus Christ, but you don’t believe in who Jesus is.

    A Mormon can be president. So can a Jew and Muslim. Nobody is denying their ability.

  49. toallwhoread says:

    why dont Mormons believe in who Jesus is/??What??????? in your mind?

  50. Mormons aren’t weird really

    Hmmm…I don’t know a single evangelical church that blocks non-evangelicals from entering their houses of worship. Your beautiful temples are barred to those who are not “temple worthy”, something mentioned NO WHERE in the New Testament. Even blood relatives who are not “temple worthy” cannot enjoy the wedding ceremony of a couple who marry in your temples. That’s weird. And I haven’t even gotten into your “holy undergarments”, your practice of “baptism for dead people”, and many of the outrageous statements of your founding prophet and other leaders of your movement.

    And are you saying that there is no difference between a Mormon and a born-again Christian. Really? Let’s look at some of your leaders’ past statements on that topic:

    —————————–

    “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”
    – Prophet Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.270

    “…all the priests who adhere to the sectarian religions of the day with all their followers, without one exception, receive their portion with the devil and his angels.”
    – Prophet Joseph Smith , The Elders Journal, Joseph Smith Jr., editor, vol.1, no.4, p.60

    “This is not just another Church. This is not just one of a family of Christian churches. This is the Church and kingdom of God, the only true Church upon the face of the earth…”
    – Prophet Ezra Taft Benson, Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.164-165

    “Christianity…is a perfect pack of nonsense…the devil could not invent a better engine to spread his work than the Christianity of the nineteenth century.” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, p.167); “Where shall we look for the true order or authority of God? It cannot be found in any nation of Christendom.”
    – Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, 10:127

    “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.”
    – Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 6:176

    “Both Catholics and Protestants are nothing less than the ‘whore of Babylon’ whom the Lord denounces by the mouth of John the Revelator as having corrupted all the earth by their fornications and wickedness. Any person who shall be so corrupt as to receive a holy ordinance of the Gospel from the ministers of any of these apostate churches will be sent down to hell with them, unless they repent”
    – Apostle Orson Pratt proclaimed, The Seer, p. 255

    “After the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized, there were only two churches upon the earth. They were known respectively as the Church of the Lamb of God and Babylon. The various organizations which are called churches throughout Christendom, though differing in their creeds and organizations, have one common origin. They all belong to Babylon”
    – George Q. Cannon said, Gospel Truth, p.324

    “When the light came to me I saw that all the so-called Christian world was grovelling in darkness.”
    – Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 5:73

    “With a regard to true theology, a more ignorant people never lived than the present so-called Christian world.”
    – Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 8:199

    “The Christian world, so-called, are heathens as to the knowledge of the salvation of God”
    – Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 8:171

    “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; they are preaching their fathers’ sermons —preaching sermons that were written a hundred years before they were born. …You may get a Methodist priest to pour water on you, or sprinkle it on you, and baptize you face foremost, or lay you down the other way, and whatever mode you please, and you will be damned with your priest.
    – Apostle Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses, 5:89

    “The Gospel of modern Christendom shuts up the Lord, and stops all communication with Him. I want nothing to do with such a Gospel, I would rather prefer the Gospel of the dark ages, so called”
    – Prophet Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, p.196

    “But as there has been no Christian Church on the earth for a great many centuries past, until the present century, the people have lost sight of the pattern that God has given according to which the Christian Church should be established, and they have denominated a great variety of Christian Churches … But there has been a long apostasy, during which the nations have been cursed with apostate churches in great abundance”
    – Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, 18:172

    “What! Are Christians ignorant? Yes, as ignorant of the things of God as the brute best.”
    – Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses 13:225

    “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, Journal of Discourses 13:225

    “Doctrines were corrupted, authority lost, and a false order of religion took the place of the gospel of Jesus Christ, just as it had been the case in former dispensations, and the people were left in spiritual darkness.” (p. 266). “For hundreds of years the world was wrapped in a veil of spiritual darkness, until there was not one fundamental truth belonging to the place of salvation …Joseph Smith declared that in the year 1820 the Lord revealed to him that all the ‘Christian’ churches were in error, teaching for commandments the doctrines of men.”
    – Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 3, p.282

    “…the Book of Mormon remains secure, unchanged and unchangeable, …But with the Bible it was not and is not so….it was once in the sole and exclusive care and custody of an abominable organization (Christianity), founded by the devil himself, likened prophetically unto a great whore, whose great aim and purpose was to destroy the souls of men in the name of religion. In these hands it ceased to be the book it once was.”
    – Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, The Joseph Smith Translation, pp. 12, 13

    “And also those to whom these commandments were given, might have power to lay the foudation of this (Mormon) church, and to bring it forth out of obscurity and out of darkness, the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth…”
    – Supposedly Jesus Christ Himself, Doctrine and Covenants 1:30

    Salvation not through accepting Jesus Christ, but Joseph Smith?

    [There is] “no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith. If Joseph Smith was verily a prophet, and if he told the truth…no man can reject that testimony without incurring the most dreadful consequences, for he cannot enter the kingdom of God”
    – Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, p.190

    “No man or woman in this dispensation will ever enter into the celestial kingdom of God without the consent of Joseph Smith…every man and woman must have the certificate of Joseph Smith, junior, as a passport to their entrance into the mansion where God and Christ are”
    – Prophet Birgham Young, Journal of Discourses, vol. 7, p.289

    “He that confesseth not that Jesus has come in the flesh and sent Joseph Smith with the fullness of the Gospel to this generation, is not of God, but is anti-christ”
    – Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, vol. 9, p.312

    “If we get our salvation, we shall have to pass by him [Joseph Smith]; if we enter our glory, it will be through the authority he has received. We cannot get around him [Joseph Smith]”
    – Prophet George Q. Cannon, as quoted in 1988 Melchizedek Priesthood Study Guide, p. 142

    “I tell you, Joseph holds the keys, and none of us can get into the celestial kingdom without passing by him. We have not got rid of him, but he stands there as the sentinel, holding the keys of the kingdom of God.. But I tell you, the pinch will be with those that have mingled with us, stood next to us, weighed our spirits, tried us, and proven us: there will be a pinch, in my view, to get past them. The others, perhaps, will say, If brother Joseph is satisfied with you, you may pass. If it is all right with him, it is all right with me. Then if Joseph shall say to a man, or if brother Brigham say to a man, I forgive you your sins, “Whosoever sins ye remit they are remitted unto them;” if you who have suffered and felt the weight of transgression—if you have generosity enough to forgive the sinner, I will forgive him: you cannot have more generosity than I have. I have given you power to forgive sins, and when the Lord gives a gift, he does not take it back again.”
    – Apostle Orson Hyde, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 6, p.154

  51. toallwhoread says:

    No we aren’t like any other CHURCH on this Earth for a reason. I am not going to even give you the satisfaction of reading your crap. Temples are Holy. And so they don’t just let someone in there that doesn’t follow the commandments. Or anyone who doesn’t live by the plan of salvation as we believe it to be. Sorry but Why would they? it isn’t being “unworthy” how you see it as meaning. I am no longer going to argue about this with you. it is pointless. You are not ever going to understand with your mentality you currently have. Please don’t waste your thoughts again, I wont respond again.

  52. toallwhoread says:

    you are obviously obsessed with trying to argue that Mormons are wrong and evil. Grow up and get a life worth meaning and something more positive.

  53. It has everything to do with being “worthy” Those who carry the cards to get access are known as “temple worthy”. This is no secret. Take your Bible and look anywhere in the New Testament that tells us we must be “worthy” to enter a temple.

    I challenge you to find any evangelical church building that restricts access to unbelievers.

    Maybe you have been involved in this stuff for so long you think it’s “normal”, but this is some strange brew, my friend.

    And the quotes you refused to read are your own leaders and prophets.

  54. Here’s more on who gets access to your special temples:

    According to Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, “Holy sanctuaries wherein sacred ordinances, rites and ceremonies are performed which pertain to salvation and exaltation in the kingdom of God are called temples. They are the most sacred places of worship on earth; each one is literally a House of the Lord, a house of the great Creator, a house where he and his Spirit may dwell, to which he may come, or send his messengers, to confer priesthood and keys and give revelation to his people” (Mormon Doctrine, 1979 ed., pp.779-780).

    Once a Mormon temple is dedicated only faithful Mormons who bear a temple recommend may enter. The temple recommend is like a license or dues card, and a new one must be obtained each year. Possession of a temple recommend indicates that the bearer is in full faith and fellowship with the Church. In order to obtain a temple recommend, one must answer a series of questions in a temple recommend interview.

  55. toallwhoread says:

    yah so??
    what’s your problem?

  56. toallwhoread says:

    your are jealous you aren’t worthy or something?

  57. The message of the New Testament is that no one is worthy. That’s why Jesus died. The Bible does not classify Christians into groups of “worthy” and “unworthy”. Drop the secrecy and bigotry and let everybody into your temples. No more secrets and no more hiding.

    It’s ironic that you protest that you are not wierd but Christians like everyone else, but when the facts are presented, you wonder what the “problem” is. Hmmmm…

  58. toallwhoread says:

    worthiness to go to the Temple means we need live our life here on earth by following the Commandments, thats what they mean when they say “worthy” to attend the temple. ok?? NOT Worthy as in– to be equal to God…you are right we are not!! sorry we dont want people that go around and rob people everyday or commit rape and murder everyday in the temple. does that make any sense to you? Thats why not everyone is worthy to just walk into the temple. You are rewarded by being “temple worthy” by being a member of the church and living a life that Jesus would be proud of so to speak.

  59. toallwhoread says:

    you just read everything word for word and sometimes the meaning of things isnt how you interpret correctly

  60. toallwhoread says:

    you are wrong to be so quick to judge without knowing what you are judging in fact

  61. Can I walk in off the street and enter into your temple? What are you guys afraid of? Open up the doors and let the sun shine in!

    The truth is, you don’t need secret rituals, holy undergarments, endowment ceremonies, or acceptance of Joseph Smith as a prophet to be saved and receive eternal life. You only need to repent and confess Jesus Christ as your Savior….period.

    Romans 10
    9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

    Hmm…nothing there about temple observances, holy undergarments, etc.

  62. And how about this difficult verse for those who hope to achieve “exaltation” and become a god someday:

    Isaiah 43:
    10Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

  63. toallwhoread says:

    well through revelation there is much more to salvation than you think.

  64. toallwhoread says:

    you are right but there is more

  65. Titus 3
    5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

  66. toallwhoread says:

    read the whole work of Titus, and stop talking bad about another religion, for it is written that you should not. You should stop arguing.

  67. toallwhoread says:

    read it again

  68. toallwhoread says:

    you question God’s will, and you condemn others for their faith in the work of our God. We are not suppose to argue with you what is written and told to the prophets. We don’t question it even if we don’t know why we are suppose to do something, we go on faith and faith alone. You question every aspect of our belief and you do not show respect for our faith. That is just a part of life, and we are not going to take the time argue what is written and revealed through the prophets. Would you Argue that Abraham practiced polygamy? God instructed him just as he did Joseph Smith in modern time. Then it was stopped because God told it to be so, he had a purpose for it. You don’t understand why because you see it through eyes that mock and condemn people. You speaking as if you know that all we believe is a lie– it is also part of the plan. God has purpose and meaning and we don’t always understand or know the answers to everything. You could learn alot more about it if you talked with people within the church in a manner that isn’t so angry at what we believe. Humble yourself and read more scriptures or try and look at the work and plan of our lord more closely. Things that you understand might be enlightened more clearer if you tried to understand without harsh manner.

  69. If I showed you the many aspects of your organization that do not agree with the revealed Word of God in the Bible, would that make any difference, or do the words of your living prophets trump the Bible?

    You are upset because I am asserting that one of us is right and one of us is wrong. The founders and leaders of your organization said that all other religions are wrong (read the previous post). I am challenging you in the light of the Bible. Why does that make you uncomfortable? And I’m still waiting for any New Testament verse that tells us that anyone is “worthy” to enter a temple, and condones secret rituals.

    Don’t be afraid to examine your beliefs. Open up the windows of your temples and let the son shine in.

  70. Jelli says:

    I am LDS, and it hurts me to read through these things. I strongly believe what I believe, and I am sorry if any of you have a problem with that, but please don’t talk about it in such a demeaning way. We all have our beliefs and I respect everyone else’s, from the Muslims to the Jews to the Hindus, if that is what makes them happy, what am I to say about it. Every other religion believes that they are the only right one also. Our temples might not be open to everyone, but our churches are.

  71. RubeRad says:

    Why should wrong beliefs be respected? Wrong beliefs should be demonstrated as wrong. What does “if that is what makes them happy” have to do with anything? If believing 1+1=3 makes me happy, it doesn’t make me right, and that belief doesn’t deserve any respect, and anybody that cares about me should be trying to show me why I’m wrong.

    Sorry, but Christians, whose Christianity is based on the Bible, cannot tolerate gratuitous interference with God’s Word. As a Mormon, you shouldn’t be willing to put up with what you perceive as falsehood either, but I guess you have the option of waiting until somebody’s dead, and you can baptize them whether they wanted to be Mormon or not.

  72. danielbalc says:

    “Every other religion believes that they are the only right ones also”

    Not true, as you yourself demonstrated when you said, “”I respect everyone else’s” and “what makes them happy.”

    The reality is taught — only biblical Christianity claims to be the only way with eternal damnation as the punishment for those who reject it.

    You are betting your eternal destiny on what makes you happy. Yikes!

  73. Jelli,

    If I drove my car out onto Highway 5 and headed North, sincerely believing that I would reach Mexico, I would be sincerely wrong. At every stop, I would tell people that I was on my way to Mexico, and they would tell me that I was going the wrong way, but I would say, “Listen, I’m totally sincere and I feel strongly that I am driving in the right direction.” I would still be wrong and people should try to tell me so.

    The LDS organization is wrong to teach “exaltation”, wrong to require “worthiness” to enter their temples, wrong to baptize dead people who decided not to become Mormons in life, and wrong in believing that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. It is our duty to point these things out to you, not because we hate you, but because we love you and want to see you driving your soul in the right direction.

    Please read this information. There are not a million truths out there, there is only one truth and His name is Jesus. My prayer for you is that you would know the Truth and that the Truth would set you free from the LDS organization.

  74. Echo_ohcE says:

    Why is it SO common today for people to say that no one has any right to make truth claims? Why do so many people seem to think that truth is personal, and that whatever you choose to believe is actually true, simply because you believe it? How on earth did such an abomination of common sense take place?

    Either I had eggs for breakfast today, or I didn’t. It’s not a matter of what you think or feel. If you claim that the truth is that I didn’t have eggs for breakfast today, you are a liar. I DID have eggs for breakfast today. That’s not a matter of opinion. If you believe I did have eggs, you’re right. If you believe I didn’t, you’re wrong.

    How come we don’t understand anymore that all truth works the same way? Either Christians are right or pagans are right. Either Protestants are right or Roman Catholics are right. Either Christians are right, or Mormons are right. There is no such possibility that they are all right. That’s just completely irrational. Either Jesus is God in the flesh or he isn’t. Either God is the One God or there are many gods. Either Zeus is king of the universe or God is. Either Joseph Smith is a prophet or he isn’t.

    Everybody can’t be right. To claim that no one has a right to say that someone else is wrong is logically equivalent to saying that everyone can be right no matter what they say. Except there is one problem with that, of course, because such people can’t admit that those of us who say that THIS truth is true and anything else that contradicts it is false can also be right. WE are the ones who cannot be right. Everyone who believes some horse hockey deceptive lie can be right and should be accepted, but whoever believes the actual truth of Scripture cannot.

    Here’s something that’s true. Whenever people believe lies, they don’t claim that their answer is the only answer these days. They just demand to be accepted. For example, look at gays. They don’t claim that being heterosexual is immoral, they just want us to accept their lifestyle too. Hindus don’t teach that Christianity is wrong, they just add our God to their 300 million gods. Everyone can be right and thus get along. The exception of course is Muslims, but even they claim to believe that Jesus was a prophet. Of course, they don’t really believe that, because Jesus said that he is God and that no one comes to the Father but through him. Muslims don’t believe that. They find it to be a lie. But of course, for some reason, they still consider him to be a prophet. He speaks for God, but we just don’t believe anything he said. Uh huh. That makes sense. I’m beginning to think that at the root of all errors is some form of irrational self contradiction. People who believe in abortion don’t think it’s wrong to have children.

    Yep, for the most part, people who embrace lies don’t presume to REPLACE the truth with a lie, they just want to add to it a little bit. That’s what give lies their deceptive power. The Romans don’t want to say that Jesus’ death has NOTHING to do with our salvation, they just say that we need to add Mary and the saints and our own works into the mix. The Mormons don’t want to replace the Bible, they just want to add a few books. It’s always a matter of adding, so that they can still appear to be worshiping the correct God.

    But of course, by adding, they’re replacing the truth with a lie, and substituting worship of the creation for worship of the Creator. They aren’t adding after all.

    E

  75. Echo_ohcE says:

    By the way, the claim that we can’t know what’s right or true until we die implies that God has not revealed himself by speaking to mankind. Such a claim calls the Bible a lie, because it claims to be God’s Word, and claims that in it God has revealed himself. So to say that we CAN’T know what’s right and true until we die is to say that the Bible is full of lies. But how can you make the claim if we can’t know truth until we die? If we can’t know truth until we die, then you can’t claim that the Bible is a lie. If you can’t claim that the Bible is a lie, then why do you do it?

    Irrationality says: I love my sin so much that I will deny even common sense in order to embrace it.

    E

  76. danielbalc says:

    It’s funny to me how people boo the guy who calls it like he sees it and applaud the guy who says nothing. What did Romney say? “we need to have a person of faith who leads the country”? What does that mean? A muslim has faith. In fact a radical muslim or a radical christian or a radical mormon would have more faith then any politician.

  77. I disagree with the heckler in that I don’t believe that Romney is a “pretender”. He openly admits to being Mormon, but he has been a little dishonest about the Mormon belief system.

    Case in point: Denying to George Stephanopoulos that Mormons believe that Jesus will return to reign in Missouri.

  78. Mr Motto says:

    Well… I am a Morman. I believe that it is a religion, a christian religion. Why else would it bear his name in the church’s name. I would like to think that I have some plausable intelligence. I do listen to NPR to get me dose of philosophical and critical thinking. What I like about Mitt, not just because he is a Morman, is because he believes in the family. That the family is the root of our soceity. Strenthen the family and you could strengthen America. I am keeping my eye on all candidates, irregardless of political affiliation, gender or race. So far Mitt is on the top of my midst.

  79. RubeRad says:

    Why else would it bear his name in the church’s name

    To borrow on existing success and good-will, of course! Totally separate from the question of whether the Mormon church is Christian or not (which they’re not), the idea that the reason we know they are Christian is because of the name they chose for themselves is laughable!

  80. When Joseph Smith declared that all other churches and denominations were wrong, he forfeited the right to be accepted as a fellow Christian. Mormons claim to be the one and only true church, denying thousands of years of Christian witness.

  81. Alex says:

    That’a almost as funny as my boss telling me yesterday:

    “I consider myself a Christian, because I believe in a higher power.”
    Wow!
    I guess it’s really not that funny. It’s actually sad.
    We need to educate people on what Christians DO believe.
    Are Christians too focused on differentiating amongst themselves on issues of lesser importance?
    I come to this conclusion everytime I get into what I consider pointless conversations ie. “proper way” to worship, “proper way” to preach, blah,blah,blah!!!
    We need to Preach the Good news! We need to educate the world on what a Christian actually believes, across denomination lines, cultures, styles etc…
    This is one of my pet peeves.

  82. Mr. Spock says:

    Mormons: Whether you believe their doctrine or not, their actions speak for themselves. The mormons are taught from birth to be service oriented and to serve their fellowman. To always be anxiously engaged in a good thing.

    I look at all of the humanitarian aid that they have given to those who have fallen under hurricanes, a tsunami, earthquakes and other unfortunate circumstances.

    I look at how they have an education fund to help those in third world countries to get a college education.

    I look at how they require that their members be living a standard by which Jesus Christ taught before they can enter their temples.

    I look at how they ask their young men to selflessly serve a 2 year mission without pay (the missionary actually funds it) in foreign lands to bring others to Christ, when most young men at that age are working on their educations and vocations.

    I look at the great character and integrity of these young men when they return.

    I look at how they build and develop their relationship with God through daily prayer and scripture study.

    I look at what blessed lives they live and how they exercise faith in God to have personal revelation and miracles in their own lives.

    I look at how they truely live and serve their fellowman as Christ did.

    I see in this blog one who dwells on doctrine that they themselves have not tested, committed to or understand, only to question those who have tested and are committed and do indeed understand what they believe in. These people are committed to serving their God with all of their heart, might, mind and strength.

    Sure, I’d vote for a Mormon. I think our country could use the blessings of a president who truely believes in and serves God!

  83. danielbalc says:

    Mr Spock,
    I guess you should be reminded of what Jesus Christ said when speaking of “looking at” actions such as you’ve described.

    Matthew 7
    21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

    Interesting that you would post on the 150th anniversary of this Mormon missionary trip…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_Meadows_massacre

  84. We, as born again Christians, can disagree on some doctrinal issues, but the mormons have created “another gospel” based on a false prophet.

    A person can be really nice and still be lost and headed for hell. Some of the mormons I know are great people, but if they believe and teach a lie, they are lost.

    Did you know that Mormons believe and teach that we can all become gods?

    Please read the material on this web site:

    http://www.carm.org/mormon.htm

  85. danielbalc says:

    Here’s an update on the official position of the Mormon church regarding the Mountain Meadows massacre.

    Yesterday, the 150th anniversary of the massacre. the Mormon hierarchy ALMOST apologized.

    The worst part is they use their own “mormon historians” as the source of their facts.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,296518,00.html

  86. Lupin Kent says:

    Echo,

    In response to the third paragraph of your reply on Dec. 23rd at 5:42 pm:

    How do you feel about the statement,

    Either Jesus was a man or Jesus was God.

    Lupin

  87. Echo_ohcE says:

    Lupin,

    I feel cold. I feel scared. I feel frustrated. I feel alienated from you. I feel you should review your history and consider the arguments that were settled a millennium and a half ago by the church fathers. I feel that you don’t like what I said in my post above, and it makes you feel angry, because you want to believe that Mr. Smith had something important and God given to say. I feel that Smith’s lies are perhaps the only ones more ridiculous than those of the Davinci Code, and the fact that so many people believe them tells us a lot about how much people hate the Word of God and don’t want to believe it. I feel people will believe any ridiculous piece of nonsense if it means that they can reject Christ. I feel, in a word, emotional in response to that statement. I feel that my statement made you angry because it confronted you with truth, something you don’t like and want to dismiss. I feel that unbelievers like you know the truth when they see it but hate it so much that they spend great amounts of effort not to believe it. I feel that you are blaming the wrong person for how you are blaming, and it makes me feel slighted and cheated, as if I had been blamed for something that was not my fault. Your hatred of the truth is not my fault, but yours, so I feel quite short changed by the whole ordeal. I feel that your judgment of me is terribly unfair, and that you ought to look in the mirror in your search for who has wounded you. I feel that you are living proof of the truth of Rom 1:18-22.

    Anyway, these are my feelings about your statement. As you can see, I am an emotional basket case, with perhaps too wide a range of emotions for my own good. You asked, so I cannot but answer.

    Echo

  88. Lupin says:

    Echo,

    I have no stock in the church of LDS, and I did not mean my response as a personal attack, and I have no hate or blame for you. After rereading my response I can certainly understand why it came across as an attempt to pull out one part of a response and attack it to take away credibility in the rest of the response. That’s not what it was intended to be.

    I really wanted to talk with you about absolutes, and that was the first example I could think of that you cannot really put as an absolute I think.

    Lupin

  89. Echo_ohcE says:

    Lupin,

    Forgive my presumption.

    To be sure, logic’s laws demand many absolutes, but there are some examples of paradox, such as Christ’s God-man status, fully man, fully God. He has two natures. This is not easy for us to grasp, but is a paradox.

    But here’s something that is not paradoxical. Either Jesus rose from the dead or he is still dead. There is no middle ground here. Either Jesus is God or he is not. We Christians say that he is, everyone else says he isn’t. They muddy the waters by saying that he was a great moral teacher and a prophet, as if to soften the blow, but the fact is, such views mean that he’s NOT God. We believe he is God AND man, but we make no confusing statement about whether or not he is in fact God. He is God.

    To go along with this thread, we may also say that either Smith actually proclaimed what God told him to proclaim, or he didn’t. Either God gave the book of Mormon or he didn’t. Since the book claims to be revelation from God, it cannot be anything other than God’s revelation or a pack of nonsensical lies.

    In the same way, those who say that Jesus was merely a prophet, but not God, have failed to be logical. Jesus claimed to be God. If this isn’t true, then how could he be a prophet from God, unless of course prophet means something other than someone who speaks for God? Because of course, some people call men prophets without really believing that what they said was divine. People who aren’t Islamic call Muhammed a prophet all the time. He was not a prophet but a liar, because he claimed to be a prophet sent from God, and what he said was not the Word of God.

    It’s like Paul talks about in Gal 1. Either it’s THE gospel of Jesus Christ, or it’s another gospel, period. There’s no middle ground. Gospel or not gospel. If it’s not THE gospel, then it’s not God’s revelation, God’s truth. And if it’s not God’s revelation but claims to be, it is nothing other than lies and false prophesies. If a man claims to speak for God, but what he says is not what God has said, then such a man is nothing but a liar, no matter how nice he is or how well intentioned he may be. He is a liar.

    As extreme as these things sound to us, look at what Paul said:

    Gal. 1:8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
    Gal. 1:9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.

    Now, this is actually not a very good translation. (But who are you, to correct how the Greek is translated, you may ask. Well, I’m someone who can translate Greek.)

    In the first verse, it should not say “contrary”, but “beside”, so that anyone preaching a gospel besides our gospel, let him be accursed. And in verse 9, he says something different. He says if anyone preaches a gospel beside the gospel you received, let him be accursed.

    The apostle, who has the authority to speak for God, who has the authority to bind on earth, and it will be bound in heaven, has proclaimed those who preach a gospel other than THE gospel to be accursed. He has cursed them. Not only did he speak for God being an apostle, but this is in the Bible, the Word of God. So God agrees with it. This cursing can be understood as the opposite of blessing. Consider the blessing proclamations of Christ’s sermons on the mount. This curse is precisely the opposite.

    In other words, theirs is not the kingdom of heaven, they shall not be comforted, they shall not inherit the earth, they shall not be satisfied, they shall not receive mercy, they shall not be called sons of God, theirs is not the kingdom of heaven.

    Jesus pronounces the blessings of the covenant on his people, true believers who are characterized by the fruit of love he describes. Paul conversely pronounces a curse on false prophets and liars who, far from bearing the fruit of love, are bearing the fruit of hatred, since in preaching their false gospel they show that they are seeking to deceive and ensnare the people of God, dragging them down to hell with them. Such are cursed.

    There is no middle ground. There are two kinds of people: those who inherit the blessings of the covenant, and those who are cursed by that covenant. They are the righteous and the wicked, those who by faith in Christ are made righteous, and those who by their hatred of God and the people of God show themselves to be his enemies.

    No middle ground there. Absolutes. Children of promise and children of the devil.

  90. Steve says:

    Wow, all of you are off base–we’re talking about Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney is awesome and should be elected. Mitt Romney’s life and experience make him ready and able to be the President of the United States. I believe that Mitt Romney is the most qualified of any of the candidates. Mitt Romney will do a great job, like he has done many times before! Mitt Romney fixed the Olympics; Mitt Romney fixed Massachusetts; Mitt Romney has fixed many businesses including Staples! Watch Mitt Romney in his service and see how great he really is! Go President ROMNEY!!!

  91. Sorry, Steve, but the problem we have is electing a man to the presidency who believes (and traveled as a missionary for 2 years preaching) the following:

    1 We can all become Gods (exaltation)
    2 We must wear holy undergarments
    3 American whites are the lost tribe of Israel who crossed the ocean in glass-bottomed boats.
    4 The garden of Eden was in Missouri
    5 The living prophet is infallible.
    6 Secret temple rituals and handshakes.

    If somebody can swallow all that, do I really want him with his finger on the nuclear button?

    Please read more here:

  92. RubeRad says:

    What do any of those factors have to do with the big red button? How about this take: more publicity for Mormonism, is not a good thing for Mormonism. Why do you think the Mormon grand poobahs (I can’t remember the title for the top group of elders — prophets?) were/are so eager to snap up and hide away (faked) incriminating artifacts from the early days of the religion? This book is a great read.

  93. What do any of those factors have to do with the big red button?

    If somebody can actually believe that wacky stuff, it directly speaks to his judgement.

  94. RubeRad says:

    Our own gospel is an offense to rationalism — foolishness to the greeks. Jesus came alive after being dead? C’mon! Would you prefer a liberal “Christian” who let his human reasoning override his faith, and denied the historical resurrection?

  95. danielbalc says:

    I already stated I wouldn’t have a problem voting for Romney, especially if he’s up against Clinton. I’d much rather face teh prospects of a religiously deceived fellow then have to deal with my worst nightmare… mandatory Health Insurance!

    NOTHING scares me more than universal health care. Seriously it’s the first step towards forced abortions.

  96. itsasecret2u says:

    If Clinton is elected, I’m leaving the country. For real.

  97. zrim says:

    It’s funny to see a Biblicist like Albino start using words like “cultist” and providing a litany of “strange” doctrines, then making the mad jump to how these “strange” doctrines ought not be afforded those in magisterial power. Gimme a break.

    The problem with the Biblicism pressed by Albino is that all answers to all questions cultic is “The Bible says so.” Sorry, but as impious as it will sound to many here, in the immortal words of Holly Hunter, “that’s no answer; that ain’t no answer.” Most of the world will affirm the Bible (even God for that matter). Where it makes all the difference is in what we say the Bible says. That’s why we Confessionalists have grounds to reject what the Mormons put forth as false without having to resort to bashing one Biblicist (like the Mormons) over the head with power phrases like “it’s biblical.” You know what’s biblical? The 3 forms of unity. Those are the marks of orthodoxy. Now I am sure I am the close-minded one. Ironic how such a term actually applies to those who are Biblicist.

    When Father Albino calls Mormons whacky he just feeds the tribalism an dpetty wars of the Biblicists. Same for using that word “cult.” This Confessionalist prefers “false religion.” Cult connotes a lot of kool-aid swilling freak-a-zoids castrating themselves in some compound while they await the Blessed Charriot Moon. I know Walter Martin tells us all to call them cultists, but c’mon. The Mormons I know are not freaky cultists. They are quite normal people who are also false religionists. Biblicists like Albino make any conversation with falsehoods insane and driven by another favorite thing amongst Biblicists: sentiment.

    Zrim

  98. zrim says:

    I almost forgot…Jack MacCoy for President!

    Zrim

  99. I’ll go toe-to-toe with any Mormon any day of the week if they want to defend their wacky religion as Biblical. The Bible is our final authority, not somebody’s confession. Everything gets tested by the Scripture. The problem with the Mormons is that they claim that the Book of Mormon is “the most correct book on earth” (right in its introduction), so it’s usual a waste of time to be like the Bereans with them.

    They always get back to a “burning in the bosom” defense.

    The B-I-B-L-E, yes, that’s the book for me,
    I stand alone on the Word of God
    The B-I-B-L-E

    That chorus is unsingable if you substitute “confession” for “Bible”🙂

  100. And who in the world is Jack MacCoy…a Jehovah’s Witness?

  101. Echo_ohcE says:

    Well, let Zrim not speak for all of the Reformed, if you please.

    However, Albino, as much as I agree with your upholding of the Bible, I would ask you to affirm that you do in fact have some kind of confession, whether written or not, formal or not. You believe certain doctrines. For example, your belief of how Scripture is the ultimate authority. that’s probably a good beginning of a confession. Let that be your first article.

    For further example, you believe that only after a valid profession of faith should someone be baptized. There’s another creedal statement.

    You also believe that speaking in tongues continues today. That’s also another statement of what you believe.

    To be sure, you say that all these things can be found in the Bible. But as you know, not everyone sees those same things in the Bible, so it becomes necessary to say what you believe the Bible says.

    For example, you and I disagree on a number of points, yet we both claim to believe what the Bible says. We have the same Bible but different confessions. You have an informal confession in your mind and heart, i.e., what you actually believe and think about Scripture, and so do I. I also have an informal personal understanding of Scripture. Meanwhile, my church has a more formal declaration of what they believe Scripture says. It’s far less detailed than what goes on in my own mind however. Our confession is supposed to be a unifying document that many can agree on. (And since about 3 million Presbyterians in this country use the Westminster Confession, I think it serves its purpose.) But while it seems to be very narrow, there is actually a lot of room for disagreement in a number of places.

    But anyway, we all have a unique understanding of Scripture when it comes down to the details. I think it’s nice for a church to have something that clearly defines the boundaries of what is permissible for its ministers to believe. As long as they are within those bounds, good to go, but if not, then you need to leave or repent. If you leave, go with our blessing. If you repent, so much the better. But we say if you don’t change your mind, you can’t stay with us.

    I think you would say the same thing about certain things. You probably wouldn’t let me join your church, for example. Or at least, I couldn’t join a lot of churches that have formal membership with requirements and stuff.

    So anyway, I just wanted that to be said, along with also saying that Zrim doesn’t speak for all the Reformed.

  102. zrim says:

    Albino,

    Jack MacCoy is the prosecutor on Law and Order.

    You simply make my point about Biblicism, Al. The ironic thing is that Biblicists on the Christian Right (and left and in between) have this healthy disdain for propositional truth, yet when it comes to things cultural they are downright rabid about “absolute truth.” Judging from the large majority of the comments on this thread–including the religiously bigoted notion that we should think twice before giving a Mormon the keys to the city–it seems true what they say: Evangelicals make much better Republicans than Christians. Ouch.

    Echo,

    That I don’t speak for “all the Reformed” seems like good, common sense. First, because no one in his right mind would want that sort of burden. Second, many Reformed want to be considered Evangelical before Reformed. And since I don’t register with that, my speaking for them would seem askew. But I think your comment is more basic than that, meaning you have a problem with something I said…what would that be exactly?

    Zrim

  103. We do indeed have a statement of fatih (that mostly parallels the Apostle’s creed, with which we also agree). My problem is when I perceive that people are putting their own confessions and creeds on the same level as the Scripture (kind of like how old Scofield stuck his own notes and commentary right in there with Bible verses…sometimes even with the same font). If this isn’t you, then great. Just be careful to appeal more to the Bible and to your creeds and confessions less; that way you will have better success with those who aren’t part of your denominational group.

  104. I do, for the record, strongly believe in absolute truth. You are mistaken there. I think where we differ is that I don’t necessarily claim to be able to completely understand the mind of God.

    As to the accusation that I am a religious bigot–what?? Have you traded in your cigar for a bong pipe?

    Let’s say Mitt worshiped frogs…bowed before them 10 times a day, and believed that he would one day become a frog. He further traveled 2 years convincing people of this, and wore special underwear to remind him of this. He also participated in secret rituals and handshakes.

    I would posit that believing that he can become a god is nuttier than worshiping frogs.

    I’m sorry, but some beliefs are wacky, and if he truly holds these beliefs, it reflects on his judgement. You call this “bigotry”?

    What if he was a wiccan? Isn’t believing in multiple gods nastier than being a wiccan?

    Anyway, I report and you decide.

  105. zrim says:

    Al,

    1. Even Rome believes in the B-I-B-L-E. The bigotry shown here about Mormons was also what was at work when JFK had to make his case that nobody would have to worry about his Administration. This is but one symptom of what ails American religion, including Reformed circles.

    2. “Putting their confessions on the same level of Scripture.” Biblicism usually makes the crucial error of mistaking a high view of the forms with an infallible view. The Scripture is infallible. But just as a high opinion of the forms is equal to a low view of them, what Biblicists have runs the range on the high opinion/low view. Some are bare-knuckled to the point of calling them “paper popes” (Finney, anyone?), and others have very nice and sunny views, “you have some great things in those confessions of yours…but they are not actually binding, etc.” I would guess Albino’s is more sunny, with a dash of bare-kunckled, depending on the mood he’s in.

    3. I don’t smoke. But bigotry has that magic way of innocuating its victims into believing they are not actually espousing it.

    4. I don’t know the mind of God either, Al. I am with Calvin when he says that such an endeavor is “a labyrinth from which there is no hope if return.” You betray your Biblicist error that a Confessionalist claims to have a monopoly on the “secret things of God,” or mistaking a high view with an infallible rule. But we may speak where He has spoken. He has spoken on things cultic (i.e. justification, grace, faith, etc.) but not on things cultural (abortion, gay marriage, limited government).

    5. Why should I vote for a guy that actually believes another One rose from the dead? How is that not whacky? How is it not whacky that I believe that there is only one way to the Father? Whacky beliefs do not imply competence to make statecraft. Unless one is insane. Are you saying Romney is insane?

    6. You say you believe in absolute truth, then tell me to not consult the Apostle’s Creed. Well, which is it? I am sure you believe that certain policies of statecraft are immutable. Do you believe that Jesus sits at the right hand of God? The answer, I suppose, is a lukewarm, “Eh, maybe. Let’s re-invent the wheel and open our Bibles again.” Roe v. Wade is and always will be bad law and an affront to absolute truth to you. But when it comes to the doctrines of grace, well, let’s not get hasty here and actually believe we may speak definitively where God has. How silly.

    7. Your cultic and cultural wires are, as any good Biblicist, completely crossed.

    z

  106. danielbalc says:

    Z,

    do you ever stop to think that you are exactly what what the Bible warns us about. Someone who loves to stir up dissensions, controversies etc. Do you ever read Galatians 5:13-15 and feel convicted that every blog conversation you join in is for the purpose of fighting with other believers?

    I know I do.
    Often I do.
    I need my self serving nature to be tapered and checked constantly.

    May I recommend that you reconsider your attitudes and words on these blogs.

  107. zrim says:

    As soon as you open your mouth to qualify what differentiates you from a Mormon you do just what Confessionalism does. The difference is that you make *yourself *the confession, instead of those forms which have stayed the test of time and place. When you exhaust yourself you simply whip out the Bible. You adhere to solo scriptura instead of sola scriptura and likely mistake yourself for being being in the latter camp. But remember, the Reformation was a battle on two fronts: Rome and the Anabaptists.

    I have to hand it to you though, Al. You are consistent in your Biblicism. You use its rule of self-reference: “I am not a religious bigot because I say I am not one.” You likely say you are a Christian because you say so, instead of looking to the Church to say so. I thought Biblicists were supposed to “kick the self of its throne”? Oh, wait, I bet you have because you say you have.

    Anyway, I have no problem with your tradition in and of itself. You’re you and I am me because our traditions inform us differently. You are a Biblicist and I am a Confessionalist. I just thought it was an interesting dimension that yours, on paper at least and from what some of them write, makes so much room for religious bigotry to the point of actually suggesting Romney can’t be trusted(!) Yeow. Then you get those like Echo who gloss over the bigotry and put types like me out to pasture. I know he’s up to here in his seminary-ism, but I think he could use a bit more marinating in the confessional tradition. Semper Fi, Echo.

    z

  108. zrim says:

    It’s just a blog, Daniel, not the Church.

    I like a healthy, robust back and forth. What’s wrong with a good fight? Believe it or not, I take your point. I have been in plenty of exchanges where people take themselves more seriously than their ideas. Some get personal and attack in nasty and vicious ways, others wimper something about Galatians and stomp home. It’s a fine line between taking ideas and self seriously.

    But I take your cue. I will go back from whence I came. Silly me, I thought Rodney King no longer lived.

    z

  109. RubeRad says:

    It’s just a blog, Daniel, not the Church.

    This made me think:

    Q: Should we vote for a Mormon to be President?

    A: It’s just America, Albino, not the church!

    (That looks like a joke, but I mean it as a sincere response)

  110. Rube, Would you vote for a Wiccan?

  111. danielbalc says:

    since we are playing the “lesser of two evils” card here are your choices…

    Romney

    or

    Clinton

    Which one Albino?

  112. itsasecret2u says:

    I don’t get how our doctrines (in Christianity) appearing illogical and foolish to the outside world is relevant at all. There is one key difference between our beliefs and the beliefs of the Mormon church: Ours are actually true. So why can’t Albino say, “I question this person’s judgment because he is deceived about such things,” without being accused of being a bigot? We know that the Mormon church’s beliefs are not true. Should we simply forget this when we step into the voting booth?

    Furthermore, how is it any more bigoted not to cast a vote for a person based on their public religious declarations than it is not to cast a vote for a person based on their public political declarations? I refuse to vote for anyone who supports abortion. It is the one political point I won’t compromise on. Am I now unfairly biased against abortion-supporters? Are we not supposed to vote for the candidates we feel will best represent us in their office? Isn’t that kind of the point of having elected officials?

    That being said, I would vote for Mitt if he were the best candidate of my choices. Being religiously deceived is not an automatic disqualifier, in my opinion.

  113. Daniel,

    I would hope it wouldn’t come to that, but, if those were my choices, I may just have to either abstain, go 3rd party or write in Reuben.

  114. Still no answer from those calling us religous bigots to my big question?

    Would you vote for a Wiccan? How about a member of the church of satan? Do you get my point here? Everybody draws the line somewhere.

  115. Echo_ohcE says:

    Albino,

    You said: “We do indeed have a statement of fatih (that mostly parallels the Apostle’s creed, with which we also agree).”

    Echo: That’s great. Contra Zrim, I find the Apostle’s and Nicene Creed to the be absolute measure, so to speak, of orthodoxy. You can still go to heaven if you don’t believe the Three Forms of Unity of the WCF. But if you disagree with the Nicene Creed, for example, you aren’t. Period.

    You said: “My problem is when I perceive that people are putting their own confessions and creeds on the same level as the Scripture (kind of like how old Scofield stuck his own notes and commentary right in there with Bible verses…sometimes even with the same font). If this isn’t you, then great.”

    Echo: I think I know what you mean, but I think the charge is unfair, if you are directing it at the reformed who use confessions. (Although, it’s completely fair to the Scofield Bible people.) You see, for the reformed, their confession is what they believe the Bible says. You talk about what you believe the Bible says, and proclaim it as if what you think it says is in fact what it says. It is impossible to avoid appearing as if you put the Confession on the same level with the Bible because of the nature of what it is, namely a belief statement grounded in the Bible. It is a summary of the Bible, which as you know, is a very big book. But it actually says right in our Confession that the only final authority is the Bible alone. By appealing to our Confession, we are appealing to what we think the Bible says, but in abbreviated, summarized form. So for example, when we appeal to our Confession where it says that justification is by faith alone, we appeal to it as if we were appealing to Scripture, even though it is OUR doctrine. But in appealing to our doctrine, we at least are convinced that we are appealing to a doctrine that Scripture demands we believe. A Roman Catholic theologian, however, would say that our Confession doesn’t say what Scripture does. Yet in this point, you would affirm what we have in our Confession as being what the Bible says, because you would agree with it. Do you see my point? Our Confession is what we have agreed upon as being what the Bible says. If it actually IS what is contained in the Scriptures, then why can’t we appeal to it as if it carries some authority? For us it does have authority. But we are always willing to critique it based on what we see in Scripture. Always. There isn’t a minister I’ve ever heard of that doesn’t take some scruple to the Confession.

    You said: “Just be careful to appeal more to the Bible and to your creeds and confessions less; that way you will have better success with those who aren’t part of your denominational group.”

    Echo: well, I’m not sure how practical you’re actually being here. To be sure, the Bible has a greater authority than the Confession. Granted. But even if I appeal to the Bible, you will disagree with how I interpret it. So it really becomes a matter of interpretation vs. interpretation. It’s not a matter of the Bible being so obvious and self evident that we can just quote it to each other without arguing for a certain interpretation.

    So for example, if I cite a text of Scripture that proves the reality of predestination, you will say that that text doesn’t mean what I think it means. Then where are we? We are at what you believe vs. what I believe. The authority of the text is gone because we cannot agree on what it is saying, so neither one of us can appeal to it as an authority. The only authority we can appeal to is our own authority to interpret the text. So then it becomes me trying to convince you of what the text says, and vice versa.

    But our Confession is really just a big collection of assertions about the Bible. It says that this is what we believe it says. It cites countless proof texts for each point. It is up to me to explain the argument, the reasons the assertion is being made.

    But of course, by citing the WCF, I am citing assertions that many theologians and pastors have agreed with by an oath over the course of 350 some odd years. I am citing the consensus of many wise men who know the Bible better than all of us put together.

    So when I quote the Confession, this is what I’m pointing to. I recognize that it isn’t the end of the discussion to point to it, but it’s where I always begin. It doesn’t have the authority of the Bible behind it, but the authority of the interpreters. But that authority should not at all be lightly dismissed. After all, when you preach to your congregation, you expect them to take what you say seriously because you’re a minister. Your sermons don’t have the same authority as Scripture, but it is a very high authority bestowed on ministers.

    Because of this high view of the office of minister, we take our confession very seriously, as if it were one long sermon on the whole Bible agreed upon by literally THOUSANDS upon thousands, perhaps a million or more ministers who were carefully trained in interpreting Scripture and understanding theology.

    So unless you don’t want people in your pews to take you seriously when you preach, you’ll forgive the reformed for taking their confessions seriously, since it has a lot more authority behind it than simply one man’s sermon. More like a consensus sermon of generations of Presbyterian ministers and elders. that is not to be taken lightly.

  116. Echo_ohcE says:

    I would totally vote for a Wiccan if they were qualified and were interested in bringing about justice for all. I probably already have. If they were interested in advancing the Wiccan cause through their office, that’s another matter.

    But anyone can uphold simple justice, and that’s what our elected officials are called to. Liberty and justice for all. I ask no more. I don’t care what your religion is. Uphold this ideal and you’ve got my vote.

  117. zrim says:

    Al,

    1. I knew I said I’d go away, but…

    2. I think I am the only one calling your words religious bigotry; so far, Echo and Rube have played nice.

    3. You want to know for whom I as your critic would vote. You offer up a Wiccan or a member of the church of Satan. I find this to be the rather simplistic ways of reasoning and conversing one often finds in your circles (guess what, kids? If you reject legalistic, Bible-toting Fundamentalism, that doesn’t mean your only options are dens of iniquity like they tell you; you can actually get *true* religion while you drink and smoke). The others have answered well though, Echo in particular. And what’s good for the Wiccan goose is also good for the Christian gander…don’t even think about advancing your Xian cause in the public square…I don’t want my public schooled covenant children praying to the unknown God the Deists push as they screed about the Pledge of Allegiance.

    And, btw, Echo, dogmatic adherence to the 3 forms/WCF actually opens one up to greater ecumencity and unity. You just have to have your in/visible church lines brightly drawn. I was the most schismatic when I was a Biblicist who measured everything by the B-I-B-L-E. I have greater ability now to expect to see plenty of different kinds of Xians in the next age and call them brethren now. In fact, I don’t even go so far as you do to make the Creeds “necessary for salvation,” meaning I can peak into any man’s eternity. Sheesh, talk about having blurred lines. Who said anything about knowing who is going to heaven? Ever heard of wheat and chaff, upturning internal stones or “wolves within, sheep without”? Talk about being unduly dogmatic!

    Here’s to the complete secularization of the public square; the “Presbyterianism which demands th eintolerance of all things cultic and tolerance of all things cultural.” Oops, no frothy ones hoisted around here probably…alas, I drink alone.

    z

  118. zrim says:

    Secret,

    Al displays biogtry because he actually thinks that cultic belief implies the ability to carry out common endeavor. It’s nonsense. Should I not let my unbelieving neighbor babysit my children? If you think about it, you let those outside your cultic belief system get away with all sorts of common stuff. Why is being President any different? The problem many here seem to have is that they are not triadalists: a sphere for the redeemed, a sphere for the damned and a spehere where all is common. Fundies and Liberals lack this and either radically separate the spheres (Fundies) or collapse them (Liberalism). Al is a Fundie, so he naturally makes such a radical distinction he cannot fathom how a Buddhist can make him a nice smoothie at the mall…yet he lets him. But ask him about President and for some reason it’s a different ball game. He’s a Fundie, but not a very consistent one. Otherwise he’d make sure the kid at the mall showed his Xian credentials. Sound silly? Now you are getting it.

    Religious and political public declarations are two different things.

    z

  119. zrim says:

    Secret,

    You and Al also seem to imply that our Xian confession is merely a matter of rational thought (“if he can’t figure out cultic truth, how can he figure out common endeavor”?). But I am little surprised since your doctrines of grace are cut off at the knees and, while you may formally acknowledge it, God is the author of our faith, not our reason. Yours betrays the rather arrogance view that we are Xians because we figured it out. Huh? (Little wonder we have such a bad rep in our time and place a sbeing arrogant.)

    But then you, in one fell swoop, say this matters little to you as you climb into the voting booth. Double huh?

    General question: speaking as someone with more conservative politics on abortion than the Dubya Admin., why is that so important? Why, no matter *what* is happening in the world, the one issue that so many Xians use as their voting rudder? Terrorists could be flying to towers left and right and these same voters want to know just what someone thinks about Roe? Again, as one with views that make his more liberal family and friends cringe, whatis the big, hairy deal? So abortion is legal…so what? Turn the page already.

    z

  120. itsasecret2u says:

    Z,

    I’m not at all implying that we (any of us) are Christians because we figured it out. What I’m saying is that I don’t understand the assertion that we can’t use a person’s chosen faith (whether we’re talking about Mormonism, Catholicism, Buddhism, or what have you) as a barometer for their judgment in general. I exclude true Christianity here because, unlike these other religions, it is a True faith and I believe God chooses us, not the other way around. (And yes, of course that sounds arrogant, but it is what it is. I only really consider it to be truly arrogant if we assume God chose us for some reason within our control, like our abilities, talents, or general awesomeness. Otherwise, it is really just a testimony to His unfathomable mercy. But I digress.)

    If I look at a person who calls himself an agnostic, I think I can make some character judgments based on his declaration. I can say he is noncommittal, firstly. I could also say he either is truly confused or he prefers to take the safe road and avoid the touchy word “atheist,” thus causing me to believe that he is somewhat of a pansy. Either that, or he is simply too lazy to be bothered with really trying to answer the “God question.” When a person decides to associate himself with a Unitarian church, or something of that sort, I can make other general character assessments about him. He holds the worldly idea of “peace” and “unity” and tolerance above all else. He is enamored with the idea of relativism. “I would never abort my baby, but who am I to say it’s wrong for you?”

    My point is that the false religion a person associates himself with does speak to us about more than his faith. It tells us about their character as well. And character is definitely something I think should be considered when you enter the voting booth. This is why I said I would vote for Mitt if he were the best of my choices. I don’t think being a Mormon says enough negative things about a person’s character to disqualify them from getting my vote, though I can totally see Albino’s point on the matter. Albino has also had much more experience than I in dealing with people in the Mormon church (and in much higher offices) and the faith as a whole obviously gives him the creeps. I don’t think that makes him a bigot. He just might have a hard time casting a vote for someone whose character is in question because of his choice of faith. I would have the same problem in casting a vote for a card-carrying Unitarian church member because relativism makes me want to punch babies.

  121. itsasecret2u says:

    And speaking of babies… The abortion question.

    I never said it was my “voting rudder,” if by that you mean I will cast a vote for someone simply because they say they are against abortion. I said I WILL NOT cast a vote for anyone who supports it. Period. I will compromise on other political beliefs I have, but not that one. We could play the female card here and say it’s because I’m a mother and I’ve felt little babies moving inside me (as I do presently), but that’s a cop-out and not really the real reason.

    Legal baby-killing speaks to the sad moral state of our country. It is the epitome, in my opinion, of the take-no-responsibility, ultra-independent, ultra-feminist age that we live in. And I despise it. It is my one, uncompromising point because I find it to be a simple one. War is complicated. World politics are complicated. Even the blasted environment is complicated for me (because I find it difficult to strike a balance between caring for the earth and using the earth’s resources)! But killing babies is simple. It is so very wrong in every sense of the word. I have never heard anyone give me a decent argument as to why this should be acceptable. And I’m not talking religiously – I am talking morally. How any person can think vacuuming babies out of a woman is A-OK is beyond me. The idiocy and total disregard for life involved in arriving at such a conclusion leads me to believe that the person who holds such a belief is, in general, probably morally reprehensible in other areas as well. Therefore, they will never receive a vote of mine.

  122. danielbalc says:

    As long as we are on this topic of a candidates religious beliefs maybe we should read this little article about Barak Obamas pastor.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,300135,00.html

    Evidently his “church” “theology”is “centered” on “Black Liberation”.

    “To have a church whose theological perspective starts from the vantage point of Black liberation theology being its center, is not to say that African or African American people are superior to any one else. …There is more than one center from which to view the world. In the words of Dr. Janice Hale, ‘Difference does not mean deficience’ [sic]. It is from this vantage point that Black liberation theology speaks.”

    Now see you choose between Romney and Obama.

  123. Thanks, Daniel. Um, my chances of ever voting for Obama are somewhere between slim and none, and his home church hadn’t even come into my radar yet!

    Everybody has a line they can’t cross, Zrim. I asked if you would vote for a satanist or wiccan, and, in your desire to be consistent, you said “yes”. I find that amazing. So where is your line? What if someone worships Tom Cruise or Eva Gabor? What if a candidate has a pig in his backyard that he prays to five times a day? Can you see how this might enter into our criteria in choosing a president?

    Ok, gotta get back to work on my taxes…my extensions have run out and I’m seeing the CPA tomorrow.

  124. zrim says:

    Secret,

    I don’t know what else to say without getting repetitive. You keep making my point for me and then claim you don’t. But your thinking has a way of keeping you from seeing it. And you end up implying that the only person for whom you’d vote is a Christian that is as close to you as possible—everyone is else is, well, lame and unworthy. Yeow.

    Al,

    Yes, I agree that everyone has a line. My point is simply that the one you have suggested is much too simplistic, amongst other things. To dismiss someone out of hand politically because of his religious beliefs is as silly as embracing another for the same reason. What would you do if you had two B-I-B-L-E Christians (read: non-Mormons, or worse, a Reformed confessionalist like me!) vying for your vote? See how easily your logic gets bogged down? You ask where my line is. It’s just not that easily demarcated, Al. You want to play the game of hyperbole by asking if I’d vote for a guy who worships his dog. Two can play at that game: I don’t know, this fact is interesting, but tell me more. This time try something relevant to the act of voting in a liberal democracy instead of mere punditry. What you reveal in your comments is that you play the game of attention-hungry pundits and political rabble-rousers who feed off of human prejudice and fear, you know, the ones who scramble to let us know a Republican sentor had sex in an airport bathroom as if that really mattered with regard to his statecraft; you agree to play that game, yet I am sure simultaneously criticize it when such is pointed back at you.

    I realize the term “bigotry” is loaded and powerful. But I still don’t hesitate to use it and for what I consider very good reason.

    To both of you,

    You both reveal another interesting thing I have found in wider Evangelicalism: you put way too much onto the shoulders of the political process. You make much out of “character” as if that was central to one’s political vocation. I am sure that when Dubya’s character is villified your hair raises on end and you shout “unfair!” I agree with you, but I get confused when the character of “the other guy” is questioned the rule gets relaxed. If character was a simportnat as you make it, nobody would win anything. Like the Liberals before you, you see politics as a way to effect more than it was designed to. You tie a lot of eternal stakes to temporal endeavor. Like Rube said above in response to something I said, “it’s just America.” That will sound apathetic to you, but it’s a turn of phrase meant to turn down the decibels you all seem to be comfortable with, yet to my ears it’s a screed I cannot endure very long.

    Z

  125. itsasecret2u says:

    Z,

    Not sure what point of yours you think I’m making, but whatever. I don’t know how you can not look at a person’s character (or what you can discern of it) when deciding whether or not to vote for them. I don’t know why you find it necessary to try to separate politics and morality. There is a balance between social responsibility and “business” that the political system is supposed to strike, no? And if you think my post said I would only vote for a Christian who was as “close to me as possible,” you didn’t understand my post. Perhaps you get that impression from what I said because, once again, you see every Christian you classify as “Evangy” through the lens of those whom you know personally. How bigoted of you.

  126. zrim says:

    Secret,

    …ah, I will just get repetitve. This is like talking to a Mormon at my door…or an Evangelical…wait, what’s the difference again? They both believe in the B-I-B-L-E and make too much out of character, ethics, values, politics and morality. Wait, I thought that was the Liberals? Sorry, you all look the same to me. Maybe I am a bigot?

    Seriously, though, careful with that word bigotry (or any of its derivatives), it appears to be too big for you to handle. My sense is that you are simply throwing rocks because you don’t like what I say. Al has deserved it, fair and square.

    Zrim

  127. To dismiss someone out of hand politically because of his religious beliefs is as silly as embracing another for the same reason. What would you do if you had two B-I-B-L-E Christians (read: non-Mormons, or worse, a Reformed confessionalist like me!) vying for your vote?

    If I had two candidates to chose from who feared God, I would be overjoyed. Again, you tell me that you have a line you won’t cross, but you refuse to tell me where that line is. I ask if you would vote for a candidate who worships his dog in his backyard and you call that hyperbole. But, would you vote for him? Does that cross your line?

    For the record, the Mormons do NOT honor the Bible as we do. They have 4 holy books that carry equal weight, all trumped by the word of their living prophet, who’s proclamations are NOT judged by the Bible. So stop childishly lumping evangelicals and mormons together…you are exposing your ignorance of both.

  128. itsasecret2u says:

    Zrim,

    I don’t know why you are suddenly worried about your posts sounding repetitive. They all do anyway. “I know exactly who you are and where you come from because I have evangelical family and you’re all the same. Not only that, I think I’ll throw in some ridiculous references as to how I see Catholics, Mormons, pagans, and YOU as pretty much all being in the same boat.” Yeah, that pretty much sums up most posts of yours that I’ve read. But you have to imagine it written with much more sarcasm and self-righteous disdain for the believer you are addressing. Of course, your comments about sects of “Christianity,” such as Catholicism and Mormonism, being the same as evangelical Christianity (along with your comment to Daniel on this thread about this not being “the Church,” but simply a blog) lead me to believe that you don’t even consider non-denom. Christians to actually be believers. So I’m sure this doesn’t enter into your calculations at all when deciding what to say and how to say it.

    (Now, see, that was me throwing rocks. But not because I dislike what you have to say, necessarily. It’s more because my arm is warmed up and I’m feeling sporty.)

  129. zrim says:

    Sticks and stones, Secret.

    This conversation reminds me of that Sting lyric, “it’s like singing in the wind or writing on the surface of a lake.”

    Feel free to have the last word. It’s been fun poking my head back into this section of the Evangelical world and rattling a few cages. I guess that’s the first-born in me though, always getting a charge out of holding my hand on my little brother’s forehead while he swings and swings and swings. I still do it to him sometimes and we both laugh and laugh and laugh. Oh…good times, good times.

    Zrim

  130. Echo_ohcE says:

    Not all confessionalists think Mormons and Evangelicals are the same. In fact, some of us would find the comparison ridiculous.

  131. It seems like a few rotten confessionalists can spoil a reputation that has taken years to build.

    I won’t discredit your entire denomination because of the insanity of one member (as tempting as it is) if you could promise to do the same in regards to your one bad charismatic experience. You see there are bad apples in every bunch, the trick is to weed those out, not throw out the entire bag.

    But you should put a leash on him. He is not helping your cause.

  132. ef says:

    What about Ron Paul? You don’t mention him. He seems to be the only true conservative to run on the Republican ticket in quite a long time.

    Pokerforprofit- what denomination would a confessionalist come from? Just curious… never heard of that one.

    Has anyone considered the possibility that having a Mormon in office might actually work to the advantage of religious minorities in this country, like Christians?

    While I tend to see Romney as just another moralist, as I think Zrim is suggesting, I do think that there is something to be said for a person from a perspective that has been as marginalized as Christianity is in this country.

    Of course the most unfortunate thing that I’m understanding from this whole discussion is that many don’t seem to recognize the distinction between the two kingdoms. This is a historically protestant doctrine that allows people the freedom to recognize that the Bible, while applicable to everyday life, has the most to say about faith and practice thereof, and is therefore to be most dogmatically applied in the context of the Church.

    On the other side of the token, Christians of different persuasions come to different conclusions of how those truths play out in the kingdom of men and that, according to this way of thinking about it, is ok. The fact that this has played out in the American Evangelical scene is seen in the “god talk” on both sides of the aisle and the constant attempt by both parties to gain the moral high ground by bringing God and their interpretation of holy writ into the discussion.

    We could, with a return to a two kingdom view, see a time where the Evangeliical Chrurches can get back to what makes the Church the Church… pure theology (according to the Bible, as Hayford suggests), rather than infighting over policy issues. The question of issues, it seems to me, should be left to the consciences of the voters… whether in or outside the Church.

    Jesus Christ has instituted means by which He will grow His Church… the preaching of the word, the right administration of the sacraments, and church discipline. Questions of policy can’t “help” Him, but the confusion that it creates when the Church involves itself in them will indeed hurt His cause, for it will distract us from those means of His appointment. The ways of His kingdom are not the ways of the Kingdom of men.

  133. Zrim says:

    Echo,

    Same and identical are, well, different. Identical would be, as you say, ridiculous. But if you don’t see similarities between Mormons and Evangelicals then you probably think that when Horton calls Evangelicals the “New Liberals” you furl your brow just as much. I don’t know, take it up with the good Doctor. What are his office hours?

    Profit,

    I am equally stumped by your denomination comment. My denomination is the CRC. I am in the habit of saying that I am glad I am not a denominationalist as I am no huge fan of my own. (And no, Echo, I have not seen fit nor have conditions gotten to the point of allowing me yet to leave the CRC.) I am a localist. Maybe that gives Al some joy, but that would only be because he confuses denomination with Church. I don’t believe in the one, holy, apostolic denomination…but Church. I am chaffed by a denominationalism that believes in “my denom, right or wrong!” I don’t get that mentality. My anti-denominationalism/localism allows me to walk that tension between seeing a denom as a manifestation of the Church and cling to it as such without feeling beholden merely to a denom. Augustine once said (or was it Luther?), “The Church is a whore…but she’s my mother.” Also, your picking out of good apples and bad apples seems to miss the point of what it means to be systemic. I know some really good people who are Pentecostals…it doesn’t make Pentecostalism consistent with truth.

    So, Al, I have a high view of the Church (visible and unvisible), but a low view of denom. You tend to use those two words interchangeably, which points up yet another difference between us.

    Signed,

    Zrim, The Rotten Confessionalist (hey, another good name for a blog)

  134. zrim, Your ramblings baffle me. I am at once pleased, then confused. Let me see if I can cut through the fog.

    The church (made up of everyone who is born again) is the bride of Jesus Christ and precious in His sight. I love the church. Denominations aren’t all bad (move to a new community and you more or less know what you’re getting), but like you, I find them to be builders of walls instead of bridges.

    Paul says that there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, not a million splintered little groups. Maybe what we need is a good helping of persecution to throw us together again. We all belong to Christ and have a common enemy, remember?

    Those that have labored for Christ in the Muslim world tell me that Christians of all denominations cling together for support. The same is true in Cuba.

    God help us.

  135. Zrim says:

    I have to remember why I piped up on this thread, Al. It was over your comments about Mormons. I have no desire to fight out the whole Confessionalist/Evangelical thing here, especially when you show no interest but really only disdain…which is fine…I have only disdain for yours, so we are equal (!).

    I know my comments confuse you. The ramblings of confessionalists confused me when I was in your tradition (let’s, just for the sake of getting past this, agree that you have a tradition). I could start in about the categories of the invisible church versus the visible, the triumphant versus the militant, blahblahblah. It just won’t take because you just don’t care…that’s your tradition. It’s just beyond you.

    …I just thought it was cute how you lay some nasty stuff down on Mormons and then stick the divisive moniker on me. Sheesh, I thought it was we big, bad confessionalists who were supposed to promote narrow-mindedness. Turns out, it’s the Biblicist whose system leads him to actually conclude a Mormon, by virtue of being one, cannot effect statecraft. Your conclusions are positively, as they say, medieval. It’s one thing to set the doctrinal boundry markers for the sake of truth (read: confessionalism’s high view of propositional truth), another to not only *not* do so but to then have the audacity to make the kinds of conclusions about someone’s actual abilities to do common tasks. Remarkable. And I get no help from fellow confessionalists on this list. Double remarkable.

    Zrim

  136. Again, Zrim, your comments are full of incorrect assumptions about me and what I believe. In order to make distinctions, you have to start from correct assumptions.

    What I do know is that if you are born again you are part of the body of Christ, the church, for which Jesus died — His precious bride.

    As to the question of not supporting someone to be president of the United States because I think their beliefs are too bizarre….what is it that you don’t understand?

    I already challenged you as to where your line is — because everybody has one — and you intimated that you wouldn’t vote for a man who worships his dog. That crosses the line. That makes you a bigot too.

    Mormonism is waaaaay too spooky for me. Romney isn’t just a member…he was a missionary for two years — he really believes he will be a god one day. That crosses my line.

    Hava a great day.

  137. ef says:

    Evangelicalism by its very nature (“can’t we all just get along?”) refuses to stridently police the borders of historic Christian doctrine within the Church. I could point to a lot of evidence, but I think the best case-in-point is Catholics and Evangelicals Together. In this instance, Evangelicals (presumably Evangelical Protestants) toss out the substance behind the whole reformation in an attempt to have a big beautiful and happy family (sorta) reunion with Rome cuz we’re all pro-life and conservative . Of course the doctrine of justification is one thing, submission to the forms of the Roman Church another for Evangelicals, but that is a whole other matter.

    Then a guy comes along who is outside the bounds of the Church proper and has no intention of affecting any theological statements or of making any pronouncements concerning the doctrines thereof. A man who, according to the standards of most Americans, has strange religious beliefs, but whose religion is a side-show for the likes of People magazine and D. James Kennedy and is of little importance given the fact that he isn’t running for office as Cardinal at the Vatican but as President of the US.

    Instead of being attacked for waffling on abortion or for being a big spender or for being in favor of an illegal war in a country that hasn’t done anything to us or for backing gun control or a whole host of policy problems, the same Christians (Evangelicals, which you have said that you consider yourself to be) attack him for religious reasons. Huh?

    Now let me say this- I have no such lines as those mentioned above. Not when it comes to a man running for President. If he is an anti-federalist who wants to cut taxes, radically trim the size of the federal gov’t, and return the 10th amendment to its rightful prominence in execution of the nation’s laws, I’m fine. Let him worship his dog. Let him worship Jack Hayford for all I care.

    On the other hand, if a man is out of synch with a correct view of doctrine and he is standing as a licentiate in my Presbytery, I’ll raise heck blocking him from ministry. Why the distinction? Because Christ isn’t, never was, and never will build His Church based upon the election of Romney, Thompson, Clinton, or Paul. He builds it based upon the ministry of word and sacrament. Our great nation will someday pass away just like Rome did and I won’t shed a tear, nor will my children nor my children’s children, cuz we’re pilgrams who are traveling to the heavenly city with dogged persistence and a passion that doesn’t apologize for guarding the boundries of Biblical and Historic Christianity (ie: Presbyterianism) against the leaven of impurity.

    Evangelicalism whores the best of Christ’s Kingdom in an attempt to rally troops to the defense of the Kingdom of Men. That puts the integrity of the Gospel at stake, no matter how the Supreme court may end up deciding on Roe vs. Wade in the end. That is short sighted and foolish, if you’re looking for a winner of the “greatest understatement” award for the millenium.

  138. Zrim says:

    Hi Al,

    No I said I would need more information about our canine worshipper, that I don’t draw my lines with sparse info, etc., etc. I didn’t say I wouldn’t vote for Pedro because of this tidbit of information. That was really my whole point. But whatever.

    Anyway, I give you great big gold stars because you are speaking like a very good Biblicist. You are very consistent. I have made these comments before and get branded a meanie-head, but I mean them sincerely. I find you to be a good Biblicist and I actually have no problem with someone being true to his tradition. I have problems with Confessionalists behaving like Biblicists. I have no idea why some of us go racing around debating Arminians and looking for soteriological fights except that this is a function of not having the proper categories like in/visible church, etc., which should chaarcetrize Biblicists. Who cares that Arminians are being good Arminians? We should be bothered by those within our fold who are being Arminian. (Of course, you are not Arminian. You are one of those cafeteria soteriologists with whom good Arminians and good Calvinists have little interest. You are a really bad soteriologist, at least if you ask those at the Arminian/Calvinist table where these two are much better and more consistent…give me back at least one gold consistency star! Little levity, that.) Anyway, keep up the good work being a good Biblicist. It may lead to bigotry and villianization, but so what, right? It could be worse. You could be…gulp…a Mormon. Hide your kids, they are liable to eat your first-born.

    Zrim

  139. Echo_ohcE says:

    Zrim,

    I completely distance myself from your comments. If there were one or two things in there that were more or less correct, they are not worth sifting through the rest of what you said.

    E

  140. efwake says:

    Zrim,

    I think we’re more or less agreed. For such a couple of disagreeable cusses, it is nice to find someone who recognizes the flaws in (our former) Evangelical ways of thinking about the Church and the world.

    Echo,

    Why do you need to distance yourself from Zrim’s comments? Have you said in the past that he speaks for you? Are you both part of the same denomination or tradition that one might assume he speaks for you? I don’t get that one…

    Albino,

    Zrim’s quote from Augustine (it was Augustine, btw) would make no sense to you unless you do recognize the distinction between the visible and invisible Churches. That is, there is the institutional Church of all ages which is visible here on earth and has members, and then there is the invisible Church which you seem to reference above. The former is what we see here: Roman Catholics, Lutherans (LCMS, ELCA, etc), Presbyterians (PCA, OPC, RPCNA, ARP, PCUSA, CRC, PRC, NRC, HNRC, URC, etc etc etc), Baptists, Episcopalians, etc.

    The true church, those who are elect from all ages according to the foreknowledge of God, those who will dwell in the New Heavens and New Earth, as Christ’s great bride, shall come from all of these groups. They are the invisible Church.

    Augustine was pointing to the ironic place we find ourselves in the visible Church. The Church Fathers taught that there is no salvation outside the (visible) Church; the Westminster Divines, having just protested at the point of a sword to the Anglican establishment, said there is “ordinarily” no salvation outside the Church. I love to hear Anabaptists jump through that loophole… at any rate, he was pointing to the fact that we must unite ourselves to something that is on the one hand imperfect and hopelessly lost (visible church); while on the other hand declared righteous in the sight of God (invisible church, which is found within the visible).

    To pay this institution, the one Christ set aside as His own, not the one built by men, one must demark borders around it. These borders suggest not only what is true about how we should see what goes on within, but also what goes on without. We don’t need to worry about the religious affiliation of the President as much as we do about those with whom we attempt to partner for the benefit of Christ’s Kingdom.

    On the other side of the token, I don’t have to worry about the fact that joe schmoe in the pew next to me is a Democrat and I’m a Libertarian. I’m not going to judge the Christianity of a man based upon his ballot, but upon his confession of faith. I’m not going to vote for a man based upon his confession of faith, but upon whether he will do those things which I believe will perpetuate a tolerent and friendly society in which I may practice my religion (which means I must defend his right to his) freely.

    These questions about whether we would vote for a person based upon their religion and the proceeding attempts at unity around causes within the Kingdom of men point directly to a serious lack of direction in American Evangelicalism. Are they Church or a social movement? It reminds me of the Fundies we fought with in the ’20s and against in the ’30s…

  141. Lean into the screen. If you are born-again, you are my brother. You have passed from death to life and are part of the bride of Christ…the church. You can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your family, dude.

    Have a good day.

  142. danielbalc says:

    I don’t know why this conversation keeps going on.

    Why are people so against albino’s distaste for mormons in power?

    Here are list of some religious belief’s I wouldn’t want to see in power…
    Jewish
    Muslim
    Jehovah’s Witness
    Hindu
    Any of a number of obscure cults
    TV evangelist
    Nation of Islam

    Mormons aren’t included on my list because I think they are far too concerned with maintaining a public image to cause any major problems.

    While the Muslim’s and the Jews both hold radically different view points on middle east involvement leaning too far in either direction could cause major upheaval in our society.

    JW’s don’t even celebrate birthdays or say the pledge of allegiance. Not a good choice for president (I think it would be against their beliefs to run)

    A practicing Hindu is probably the least of the evils above. In fact the caste system may be the solution to our immigration problem.

    obscure cults are all too radical, that’s why they are obscure.

    TV evangelist (I.e. Pat Robertson) are the same as voting for a practicing Jew. Very dangerous middle eastern politics. Too swayed by a minority to be effective in leading a country as diverse as ours.

    Nation of Isalm or any other religion that has clear motivations to elevate one race above others is a very poor choice.

    Albino has already stated why he wouldn’t vote for a mormon, Though i disagree with his views I think he has every right to not want to vote for one.

  143. efwake says:

    danielbalc-

    I agree completely that Albino has the right to vote for or not vote for whomever he wants. I agree with you on that. My point was beyond but related to that question. Albino doesn’t care to engage the point beyond pop-Christian “faith speak,” and he has that right too. It is strange to me that a person makes a theological rationale for who he’ll vote for but can’t articulate a basic understanding of historic teaching on the difference between the kingdoms of Christ and man.

  144. Ef,

    Do you pray for your country? Do you believe, with Solomon, that when the righteous rule the people rejoice? Is there any line on personal belief across which you will not proceed. I already mentioned dog worship and satanism and you seem cool with that.. I think that voting for someone who believes he is a future god is a scary proposition.

    Whoever gets elected, I will pray for and support. I am only stating that my vote will not go to someone who claims he is on his way to being a god. Sorry.

    Have a great evening.

  145. danielbalc says:

    I’ve had to see about 500 bumper stickers, placards, t-shirts and hats but I finally found myself seeking the answer to “who is Ron Paul?”

    http://www.ronpaul2008.com/

    I don’t care what religion he is with that platform and a chance to win he would get my vote.

  146. Zrim says:

    It’s still so very odd that Al bases his interpretation of poor Mitt on the grounds that his beliefs are “weird.”

    …yet we think we are going to be glorified by Someone who rose from the dead and was conceived by the Holy Spirit and sits at the right hand of God the Father from which he will come to judge the living and the dead…and we drink His blood and eat His flesh.

    There was a time, Al, when we weren’t so linked up to culture that we were considered weird enough to become candles in Caeser’s garden. Now the above characteristics are considered “natural” and not given to make anyone odd. But the Gospel is the strangest thing the sarx has encountered. Play your theology out long enough and one hears Jesus telling Peter to get behind him as the latter wanted to keep Jesus from His Cross. Yours is really a very natural theology, in the end, that ends up being opposed to nothing. Your gospel is too weak and seems to want to make up for it by a lot ham-fisted rhetoric about the weirdness of Mormons.

    Zrim

  147. I’ll give you the last word. I’m bored with this.

  148. Zrim says:

    Yes, it may be easier to for you to go join the gang-bang on Osteen. I understand. More theological criticism from a Biblicist who doesn’t want to be nailed down by pesky theological formulation and proposition—oy, I might have an easier time playing with the schizophrenic off his meds, but more guilt. At least it matters with Osteen who wants to speak on behalf of God, whereas all poor Mitt wants to do is statecraft. You are gaining on it, Al, but not by much.

    Zrim

  149. efwake says:

    Sure I pray for the USA. I pray that God would use our leaders to His glory, and that our country would remain free.

    Of course I don’t do that as an end in and of itself, and I don’t beleive that a liberal democrat who calls upon the name of the Lord (yes, I do believe they’re out there) would do any better job of ruling than the President we have now who uses god-lingo all the time. I also don’t think that an individual who doesn’t use god lingo might do just as crappy a job of ruling. The righteous rule that you speak of cannot be brought through the state; we’re not a theocracy. The true standard of righteousness is not our execution of the Levitical and Mosaic laws; there was One who lived that righteousness for some of us, and imputes it to His people.

    The reason that I pray that we will remain free is so that the (institutional) Church will be able to proclaim the Gospel freely. I vote for men (and women) who are running on principles that will prolong that freedom, recognizing that they may be complete heretics. That doesn’t matter though… a man’s religion is of no concern to me… I’ll side with the ACLU and Madeline Murray O’Hare if it means maintaining the ability of the Church to continue that activity which the Apostle Paul says in Romans will save people in a way that the largest welfare state with the smallest crime or abortion rates, the best educated young people, most white picket fences, least alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and dancing could ever hope to do… that is, preaching of the whole council of God, which is what must be done so that people may find true salvation.

    It seems a massive distraction for such a significant group within the Church to be more distracted with whether they’d vote for a Mormon (or anyone else based upon their nack for bumper-sticker-isms) than whether the solas of the reformation have anything to do with the sad state of the Church today. Evangelicals like yourself are more distracted with that righteous society of Solomon’s day then with preaching double imputation, total depravity, irresistible grace, and perseverance of the Holy Spirit with His saints through the right administration of the sacraments and Church discipline. That is worrisome, no matter how good your intentions.

    Does any of this make sense?

  150. I was with you until you fell back on your doctrinal dogmas…then you lost me.

  151. efwake says:

    Yeah, the Gospel is a stumbling block. We’ll agree to disagree.

  152. Lupin says:

    Everyone,

    Maybe a better question is, ‘Would you vote for Stephen Colbert for president?’

    Echo,

    [This is to a post a long time ago, so sorry for the late response and seemingly off topic discussion.]

    I understand what you are saying with respect to specific examples, i.e.,

    If Jesus says he is God, and you say he is just a prophet, then that makes no sense because he just said he was God, and you called him a liar and then said he was preaching the Word of God.

    That makes sense to me. But then you have your ‘eggs for breakfast’ example, which I think tries to imply that there is truth, and then there is untruth (sorry can’t think of a better word).

    Then you say that paradoxes are OK with respect to Jesus being God and man. Why are they only OK in that instance? You take the Bible as truth, then that leads you to the paradox of Jesus being God and man, then all of a sudden it’s ok to not have absolutes.

    This seems analogous to someone who takes every religion as truth, and then it’s a paradox that some religions claim to be the only truth. It’s just something that popped into my head when reading through.

  153. Echo_ohcE says:

    Lupin,

    Owing to the fact that what you are responding to is a very old post, perhaps you could refer me back up to what you were talking about. I’m at a loss to figure out what you’re trying to say.

    But that said, perhaps you could tell me why – as a refresher – absolutes are important to you, as opposed to paradoxes, or vice versa. What are you trying to argue for, what are you trying to uphold, what are you trying to deny? Let’s talk about that, because I figure a discussion on absolutes vs. paradox will likely end up nowhere.

    Echo

  154. Lupin says:

    I am replying to our posts on September 20th and 21st. I guess I’m just trying to figure out if I understand you. I don’t understand when you can say something is a paradox, and when you can not. I’m not really arguing for or against anything.

  155. Echo_ohcE says:

    Well and I don’t exactly have an elaborate theology of paradoxes, so I’m uncomfortable discussing it in the abstract.

  156. danielbalc says:

    Well, he said all the right things…

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,315486,00.html

    But what else is he going to say? “If I’m elected President I will consult the Mormon council of 12 for all decisions concerning foreign and domestic affairs.”

    Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee is running on the exact opposite religious platform….
    http://www.mikehuckabee.com/index.cfm?FuseAction=SignUp.Home

    notice his slogan in the upper right hand corner… “Faith, Family, Freedom.”

    While I happen to be a big fan of those three things I don’t think those are necesserily the three most important emphasis of the man who would be President…

    More like…
    Truth
    Justice
    and the American Way

    That’s why i am voting for Clark Kent…

    http://www.supermanhomepage.com/comics/comics.php?topic=articles/josh-grayson1

  157. I saw the speech. He’s a likable guy, but again, in my opinion, his religion is too weird and secretive for me. I could handle a Jewish president, A catholic president, etc., but Mormonism is just too weird, and their secret rituals behind closed temple doors are too bizarre. Sorry, Mitt.

  158. I thought I was radical, but this guy makes me look reasonable and moderate. Wow!

  159. Zrim says:

    Al said a Mormon is just too weird. You mean as opposed to those who pray to a deified Virgin, who believe a man rose from the dead, who think tongues of fire appeared over the heads of certain others, that those who trust in the man who rose from the dead will become immortal?; weird rituals like drinking the blood and eating the flesh of the man who rose from the dead? The list could go on, but you see my point, right? If you want to make bizarre beliefs/actions the litmus test you have to let go of even conventional Judeo-Christian ones. C’mon, Al, this is 101 stuff. Do I have to use the B-word smack down on you again?

    Daniel said that it is truth, justice and the American way, thus he’s is voting for Clark Kent. That is why I vote for Jack McCoy. How about a McCoy/Kent ticket?

    Zrim

  160. Echo_ohcE says:

    Mitt Romney is a mixed bag. While on the one hand, I’ve given up on the world, on the other, I still don’t want to see Mormonism gain the amount of credibility it would gain if Romney were elected President.

    That a religion gains credibility when a person of it is elected President of the United States should be obvious. When Kennedy was elected, for example, the whole nation softened to Rome.

    I would hate to see the country soften to Utah, and for weak “Christians” to be deceived and to say, “Wow, Mormons are just like us! They’re good moral people.” Because we, as Christians are not good moral people, we’re forgiven people. Mormons are not forgiven, they are damned. Sorry, but the only way to heaven is Christ and him crucified. Unfortunately, if Romney is elected, some of the devil’s lies will gain tremendous credibility, and people will join Mormon churches.

    Oh well. I’m glad I’m a citizen of another kingdom, and in the coming of it, I may have a certain hope.

  161. Zrim,

    What we have here is a failure to communicate. Everybody has a line that they won’t cross. Mine is to vote for a man who was a bishop in a church that is too spooky for me. They beleive they will be gods one day, they have hundreds of secret rituals that take place behind closed doors, they baptize in proxy for dead people, teach that the Garden of Eden was in Missouri, etc. Sorry, that is too much for me to swallow.

    You also have a line you won’t cross; you just aren’t admitting it. Would you vote for a satanist to be president or a man who worships his dog in his backyard? Where is your line? We all have one. Come clean, my brother…you will feel better.

  162. Zrim says:

    Al,

    I will freely and fully admit that I have a line, yes. I just don’t know exactly where it is; seems to be a case-by-case thing. However, to dismiss someone out of hand due to “weird” beliefs would demand you and I out of the running. Or do you consider Xianity to be perfectly natural, found in creation, easily grasped, etc.? Sounds like you do.

    What is the difference between voting for someone who worships the devil and one who prays to a deified Virgin or one who belives in the B-I-B-L-E? Fellowship in the Church is one thing, but doing statecraft is another. You have to apply different rules for different things. I realize all this is ‘heresy’ to an American religionist who thinks cult and culture go hand-in-hand.

  163. Great. You admit you have a line. Good. We both have one.

  164. Echo_ohcE says:

    Albino,

    I’d like to know how you think Mitt Romney’s religion will affect what kind of President he will be.

    I regret the huge increase in the credibility of Mormonism that will take place if he is elected, though I wouldn’t say that that outweighs that he might make a decent President. I don’t know what kind of President he would be. I’m just saying. If it were proven to me that he’d make a decent President, I’d vote for him, even if it means giving Mormonism increased credibility with the masses, especially if the alternative is someone like Hilary or OBama.

    So how do you think being a Mormon will affect his Presidency? How will it affect what laws he will veto? How will it affect how he conducts foreign policy? What will he do with the Middle East? What kind of relationship will he have with Rome and Roman countries? These are the questions I’d like answered, but I fear I won’t get an answer to them until he’s given a shot at doing it.

    But that’s politics. Campaigns have very little to do with what kind of President someone would be. But I know what kind of President Hilary would be, and I know what kind of President OBama would be, and I think I know what kind of President Guiliani would be. But this Romney character – he’s an unknown to me.

  165. Echo_ohcE says:

    Whoa! Asked and answered:

    http://www.foreignaffairs.org/20070701faessay86402-p0/mitt-romney/rising-to-a-new-generation-of-global-challenges.html

    I like Mitt Romney. I don’t know how you could read this article and disagree.

  166. I am uncomfortable with a President who belongs to a religion (he was a missionary and bishop) that has so much secrecy. That, combined with the fact that he really believes he will be a god one day, is too much for me. I respect your line as well, but I think mine is now clear.

  167. As to liking him, yeah, I guess we agree on many policies and he is probably a nice man, just like the few mormon friends that I know.

  168. Echo_ohcE says:

    Well, if you’re uncomfortable with Presidents having secretive religions, then you’re surely downright uncomfortable with our nation’s history. Many of our Presidents, beginning with the first one, were Masons, which is allegedly just a social club or whatever, but is actually a religious group – whether they think it is or not. They think it’s compatible with all sorts of religions, but it’s really just Enlightenment-style Deism, and quite pagan. Pick up some literature on those guys. They were secretive pagans. Some even think they were trying to take over the world and associated them with the “Illuminati”. I don’t know.

    You know what I think? I think that Satan has been given charge over this world for a time, and is seeking to bring about lots of crazy things. But God is in control. He will reign in the devil’s plans.

    It may be that Mitt Romney is part of some vast Mormon conspiracy to take over the world and force us all to have two wives. But they are welcome to make all the plans they like. God’s church will survive.

    Let’s not pretend that there is any candidate who will further the cause of Christ. Even if there were, that’s not the job of the President, it’s your job and the job I aspire to.

    If you ask me, if you want to be President of this country, you have to be born into nobility and sell your soul to countless devils to gain the money necessary to win an election. No, I gave up on having a good man in office long ago.

    Some think Bush is a good man. But I believe it was Machiavelli who said that the prince should appear virtuous, even if he is not. After all, it is to his advantage.

    Anyway, I don’t know why secrecy would bother you so much. The President has more secrets than anyone on the planet. Every word spoken in the Oval Office is a secret. You have to have a security clearance to vacuum the President’s carpet!

    Well, ok, Romney thinks he will be a god someday. Well, at least it’s better than the kings of old who thought they were already gods. But actually, his belief is no different from most peoples’. Most people think they are the god of their own little universe, unbelievers I mean. They really do, even if they don’t realize it. Mormonism isn’t totally unique you know.

    But anyway, while most of our Presidents have claimed to be Christians, most of them actually weren’t, any more than Romney is. But our country’s still here for now. And it seems like Romney’s got the right idea from the above article. He wants to inspire the country to be great. Ok, sounds good to me. Just so long as we still have freedom of religion and a pretty good economy, I’m satisfied, except I’d like to see abortion overturned. But other than that, as long as the gospel can still be preached, and there’s food on the table, we’ve got no complaints.

    It’s not like Mitt Romney’s gonna outlaw Christianity or something.

  169. Just when I start liking Joel Osteen again, he goes out and makes another crazy statement on national television. WHAT WAS HE SMOKING THIS MORNING ON FOX NEWS SUNDAY??? Affirming Mormons as Christians and our differences as “little details”? AHHHHHHH!!!! I am speechless.. .

    Watch the whole interview here:

    PARTIAL TRANSCRIPT

    WALLACE: And what about Mitt Romney? And I’ve got to ask you the question, because it is a question whether it should be or not in this campaign, is a Mormon a true Christian?

    OSTEEN: Well, in my mind they are. Mitt Romney has said that he believes in Christ as his savior, and that’s what I believe, so, you know, I’m not the one to judge the little details of it. So I believe they are. And so, you know, Mitt Romney seems like a man of character and integrity to me, and I don’t think he would — anything would stop me from voting for him if that’s what I felt like.

    WALLACE: So, for instance, when people start talking about Joseph Smith, the founder of the church, and the golden tablets in upstate New York, and God assumes the shape of a man, do you not get hung up in those theological issues?

    OSTEEN: I probably don’t get hung up in them because I haven’t really studied them or thought about them. And you know, I just try to let God be the judge of that. I mean, I don’t know.

    I certainly can’t say that I agree with everything that I’ve heard about it, but from what I’ve heard from Mitt, when he says that Christ is his savior, to me that’s a common bond.

  170. Echo_ohcE says:

    Yuck. What a moron.

  171. stan says:

    I would never vote for someone that’s part of a racist cult. And that’s coming from a white bloody American

  172. meagan wittenburg says:

    the fact that i am a member of the church of jesus christ of latter day saints, new albany ward, and the fact that im to young to vote right now dont not submit that i think we should have a mormon in office. there is nothing wrong with being mormon. i love it. we aint as everyone thinks. yes we have different values, but everyone does and we dont exclued them from running for office. this is coming from a 16 year old from indiana, and im not telling you all that you guys are wrong or nothing. but i dont see why make a big deal over religion. LDS isnt getting anything out of romney running for president. we dont need pablisity. we just are suporting a fellow member. so Mitt Romney, if your reading this, you got the new albany ward supporting you no matter what people say. joseph smith didnt and look at all the stuff he accomplished. ^.^

    Kelsey-Meagan Wittenburg, proud mormon

  173. RubeRad says:

    I would definitely have a problem with a president who had grammar that bad!

  174. Echo_ohcE says:

    Is that where education is at in our country? Wow.

    I’m not sure what her point was. I think it was, being Mormon is ok, so vote for Mitt Romney, so you guys are wrong, but I’m not saying you’re wrong. I’m not sure if that is a point or not.

  175. danielbalc says:

    Which of these factors do you think was most influential in miss wittenburg’s comment?

    1. A lack of years? (16 is the new 9)
    2. The deceiving powers of Mormonism?
    3. The Indiana education system?
    4. No Child Left Behind? (The law not the LaHaye pop up book)

  176. Wasn’t “No Child Left Behind” the Michael Jackson biography?

  177. Stan says:

    Never! I wouldn’t give credibility to a cult.

  178. Echo_ohcE says:

    Daniel,

    Mixture of all of those I suppose. Completely irrational and incoherent.

    E

  179. Romney’s out. Word is he wants a refund on his magic underpants, because he got whupped by a Baptist preacher and an old man.

    But he will get his revenge once he goes through exaltation and becomes a god one day.

    Goodbye, Romney…don’ t let the door hit your magic underpants on the way out.

  180. Echo_ohcE says:

    How did I know you would say something like that?

    Of course, if I were approved of by our silly country, I’d probably feel like I was doing something wrong. The judgment of these fickle, irrational people shouldn’t mean much to us.

  181. danielbalc says:

    How did I know you would say something like that?

    Because you are starting to get to know Jim. If you had known him for most of your life they way I have and the way Rube has then I think a lot of the arguments of the past year and half or so would have been markedly less.

    Ahhhhhh internet friendships.

  182. Echo_ohcE says:

    Oh? What arguments would have been less?

  183. I like to bait people with over the top remarks, then watch them go into spasms.

  184. RubeRad says:

    I thought you liked to sneak a half nelson from behind, and say “OK, now let your body go completely limp…”

  185. Echo_ohcE says:

    Albino,

    You are in favor of rock concert atmospheres in your worship service, and it is not pleasing to God, because it is unbiblical.

    E

  186. Edna Mac D onald says:

    I am not sure why most of you are wasting the use of the alphabet. I am 82. I was there when Reagan told the prop owners of CA that he would lower their prop taxes. He lied. He did not. He lowered taxes on BIG business. Gen Elec put him in office. First provided him with an all electric home, electric servers of some order and all. All of us had a teeny yellow note pad stuck to our front doors on Fri. eve. in the summer. All elec was turned off the entire weekend till we all found $500 cash Bills, that is no cks or money orders allowed, to turn our elec back on. New meters also. Old ones were broken. And when Reagan promised all the EVANGELISTS that would vote for him that he would provide them church schools. Oh he did. For exacdtly 3 months. And poor Eddy Baker, the most naive of all the TV ministers. He, Reagaon invited Eddy to Washington where Reagan marched across a stage in front of 500 EVANGELISTS, SPEAKING “Tongue” with Rev. Eddy Baker. Of course Eddy didn’t know it but he was SET UP WITH a paid by the Reagan crowd Whore to be waiting for Eddy in his Hotel Suite provided by Reagan and backers. You know what happened to Eddy, I hope. He was accused of all sorts of BAD STUFF, put in Prison where he was abused by the other TENANTS of the Prison, because Eddy was a frail little fellow, and DIED in Prison. And, you know while Reagan was Governor of CA he renamed Roosevelt Dam, to Hoover Dam. Hoover was not President when the Water Conservation and Electricity Producing Dams were instistuted. Hoover brought us nothing but a horrifying Depression, and FDR, a SUPREME CAPATALIST, running water in our homes, elecdtricity in our homes and heat in our homes. No river dams were instituted while Hoover was President. He went out in total disgrace. I was there. And I still am here. And to hear all that stuff about Reagan, and what he did. Well, Reagan fooled around with women while he was married to a faithful woman. She, as well, as an actress, but superceeded Ronnie as she won an Oscar. She as well went to his funeral while the entire Reagan family allowed her to stand all alone dressed totally in Black all by herself agaisnt a far distant wall, while his present wife pawed the casket, showing how much she deserved to be held so high as being the wife of President Reagan. She spent all that money so embelish herself, so she could make her SUPREME ACTING ROLE, pawing and clinging to the casket while his FIRST LOYAL LOVE stood all by herself dressed in total black with a black veil over his head and face so we weren’t supposed to recognize her. But her posture could not be covered. And at the wall, this speach was written for him, as most of the stuff he did. When he was shot, and who knows ordered it, Hague came out on the TV while Reagan was on the operating table declaring that He, Hague, was NOW President. Did that bring a message as to who was running the scene? The same now. McCain has an uncontrollable temper. Do you want him in charge of Atom Bombs? He already wants to wipe out North Korea and Iran. Put him in charge. He thinks he deserves to be President because his parents behind him were in the Military and he, because he was a Military Brat, also deserves to be the COMMANDER IN CHIEF. The rest of the Republicans, behind the scene POWER BROKERS, want McCain IF HE WILL DO AS THEY SAY. He wants to be COMMANDER IN CHIEF so bad that he has reluctantly promised to do as they wish. We don’t need a Bush MONARCHY, or a ROMNEY Monarchy. We need someone who will be a CONSERVATIVE and still hold the people in mind with all the plans he says he will institute. Who is saying that? I believe Huckabee is saying that, and I certainly respect Chuck Norris. He has stood up for right in his own fighting career and the Video Shows he acted in showed how he supported right over might and his respect for the Native Americans, and all the folks out here. I support Governor Huckabee. As well he as been a Vice Governor as well as a successful Governor. Arkansas was always considered the backward state, and Governor Huckabee brought it up to snuff and he did this with the WILL AND CHOICE of the PEOPLE of Arkansas. Thompson was hired to sling viscious smears at Huckabee. And Gov. Huckabee has explained the circumstances of these smears over and over again, and Fox News has repeatedly repeated these false accusations.
    I wondered who hired Thompson, and thought at first that it was Cheney. Then I thought it was Romney, as Romney applauded Thompson and accused Huckabee over and over again, while Gov. Huckabee continued to be a high character candicate. I was right in the first place, after Thompson was out and a while later, Cheney’s daughter came out and said that she supported Thompson, the LOOSER, LOBBYIST. That’s how Thompson made a lot of his money. Lobbying.

  187. Edna Mac D onald says:

    It is too bad that the FOLKS have lost their power of voting. Look what happened in Washington State. The Repubs supporting McCain wanted him to win so bad that they stopped the voting 1,500 votes short, not counted, while there were 200 votes different between the two candidates. Who do you suppose the pundits were AFRAID would win? I believe this shows that they are afraid that they won’t be able to control Huckabee, and make him into a puppet to continue the Administration that is extant. President Bush even stated that he will HELP McCain see the LIGHT when and if he becomes President. I’m sure. The Pundits will continue and try to overcome the folks however they can.

    When we have to pay for and use Internet Faxes to tell our ELECTED CONGRESS folks to behave themselves and follow the wishes of those who elected them to these cushy jobs.

    And the President, he is not Commander in Chief over the Folks, except where it concerns War. So, to become Commander in Chief, a President creates a War. How WONDERFUL GWB had to have Saddams face and shoulders displayed for all the World to see on TV because he wanted to GET EVEN because Saddam made attempts on his father’s life. You know? I voted for GWB two times. And I’ll vote for Huckabee. But I have to take a stomach calming herb and hold my nose when I have to go vote for McCain if he somehow becomes the Republican Candadate. He never would have gotten this far if Liberal Guiliani, beaten out by Huckabee, hadn’t given McCain his strength. McCain would be in Huckabee’s dust if that hadn’t happened. Who do you believe is REALLY the Conservative in this Republican race. And who is the most decent as well? And if Romney want’s to show that HIS FAITH is so all mighty important, he certainly will not give his strength to McCain, unless MONEY means more to him that his FAITH. Faith in what is right and wrong is what drives Huckabee. He believes in right and the strength represented by OF THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, AND FOR THE PEOPLE. Not of the RICH, by the RICH, and FOR THE RICH, which the U.S.A. appears to have become.

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