review by Mike Robinson
Mormon leader Joseph Smith deployed the opening volley against the God of the Bible and Christian theism when he declared: “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! … I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and have supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea.” Thus Smith attacked the heart of the Christian faith in his denial of God as eternally God as well as other essential attributes of the Lord. It’s odd that many non-Christians incorrectly believe that Christians loathe Mormonism because of past polygamy and cultural issues. Those are small matters compared to the barrage of assaults that Mormon leaders have launched against the true and living God as they teach that God the Father was once a sinful man who progressed to godhood. Additionally, Mormons leaders have stressed the idea that faithful Mormons may become gods in yonder heaven—including these Mormon Quotations:
· [Y]ou got to learn to be gods yourselves, and be kings and priests to God, the same as all gods have done before you” (Mormon Scholar B.H. Roberts).
· “…God came to be God” (Joseph Smith).
· “As man is, God once was; As God is, man may become” (Mormon motto every LDS child memorizes; Lorenzo Snow).
· “[O]ur Father in heaven at one time passed through a life and death and is an exalted man… our Father had a father and so on” (LDS Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith).
· “God the Eternal Father was once a mortal man… He became a God” (LDS leader Milton Hunter).
I know many Americans find it unpleasant to read tough criticisms concerning the religious beliefs of other people. And in The Mormonizing of America Stephen Mansfield is not only aware of the troubling doctrines of the LDS, but he takes great pains to name them with care, patience, and kindheartedness. The reader can easily discern that the writer is not anti-Mormon but only tells an accurate story that includes the unrighteous dogma of Smith &Co. Some things that are true can be difficult and troubling. Unusual and vexatious theology is discussed in this volume, but mainly as a view within history. Moreover, I also understand that many people do not know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS, the Mormon church) teaches that God the Father was once a mere sinful human. The LDS also believe that men can become gods. Every Mormon prophet and apostle has clearly taught these false doctrines. And Stephen Mansfield (NY Times bestselling author of The Faith of George W. Bush” & “The Faith of the American Soldier) supplies a thorough yet relatively concise history of the LDS Church. The reader learns of Smith, his culture, personal background, kinfolk, and religious setting.
This volume discusses:
- The Golden Plates and their translation
- The LDS family unit
- Disconcerting Mormon Doctrines
- Joseph Smith as U.S. Presidential candidate and magician
- Mormon leaders naming Christians as Anti-Christs
- LDS society
- LDS history (with many fine photos)
- and the structure that helps them succeed.
Mansfield pens, “The truth is that when all of the research is considered, there is precious little scientific or historical evidence that Book of Mormon claims are historically true.”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) may not be a real Christian church apropos the nature of God, but many LDS members are nice, polite people, and are sincere in their beliefs. Yes, some of their doctrines are very troubling: an Apostle of the LDS, Gordon Hinckley confessed in 1998 that the Mormons “do not believe in the traditional Christ. The traditional Christ of whom they speak is not the Christ of whom I speak.”
And the LDS church teaches that God the Father is an exalted man who continues to change and grow (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 345-347).
^ Christianity teaches that God the Father is not a man and He never sinned (Numbers 23:19; Isaiah 31:3).
Additionally, Mormon doctrine declares that there is a plurality of gods who have an infinite number of gods above them (Journal of Discourses 2:345).
^ Christianity believes the Bible when it reveals that there is only one God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 43:10).
And the Mormon Church misleads people in thinking that men may become gods (Journal of Discourses 2:345).
^ Christianity asserts the biblical position that there is only one God and none will be formed after Him (Isaiah 43:10-11).
Manfield observes: “If a man’s faith is sincere, it is the most important thing about him and it is impossible to understand who he is and how he will lead without first understanding the religious vision that informs his life.”
Mansfield notes that the Book of Mormon describes horses in the Americas thousands of years before Columbus reached its shores–and he saw none. The BOM similarly reveals pigs, sheep, cattle, and donkeys arrived 1000’s of years before the Europeans; yet, none were found. The BOM also states that Native Americans are descendants of the lost tribes of Israel even though modern DNA evidence found otherwise.
“Abraham… Isaac… and Jacob… sit upon thrones… not as angels but are gods” (Mormon scripture: Doctrine and Covenants 132:37).
“As the acorn becomes the oak, the mortal man becomes a god” (LDS prophet and President Spencer W. Kimball).
Mormons and the LDS religion are falling in the public eye and are growing in power through politics, culture, sports, and showbiz (Mitt Romney, Harry Reid, Glenn Beck, the Marriotts, Donny & Marie, Brian Harper). Mormonism may not grow as fast as the AOG, Non-Denomination churches, the Foursquare church, the Seventh Day Adventists, and others, but they are growing at a fair pace and their interesting story is hitting the spotlight at a vital moment in American history. Get this volume and discover the reasons for the growing Mormon influence. You may abhor their doctrine, but resemble their lifestyle.
From everlasting to everlasting, You are God (Psalms 90:2). —————————————- for more see my eBook Christian Philosophy Critiques Mormonism HERE