Reason #122: Because LDS history has been continually whitewashed

When I was a Mormon, the first of Joseph Smith’s dozens of wives, Emma, was portrayed as his only wife. Not only that, their relationship was always depicted as loyal and loving — though LDS scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants showed that Emma had difficulty with the doctrine of plural marriage. (Great understatement…) To this day LDS retail stores sell statuettes of the couple looking lovingly at each other. The truth of the matter is very different: “The simple fact is that Mormon historians have already shown the Emma Smith/Joseph Smith/Polygamy story to be very different than the LDS would like to have it. I mean, come on, you have to ask yourself why Brigham Young once (in public!) claimed Emma Smith tried to poison Joseph, but now...

Reason #121: Because LDS politicians still believe they’ll save the US

Although I agree that somebody needs to step in and save the US government, I don’t believe that the LDS church is the one to do it. However, a candidate for the governorship of Idaho is holding meetings to discuss the LDS prophecy that the US Constitution will “hang by a thread” and only be saved by LDS leadership. See the newspaper article here. For more information, see The Mormon Mirage 3rd Edition:  A Former Member Looks at the Mormon Church Today(Zondervan, 2009). Also available as an audiobook and as an expanded-text E-book for Nook, Kindle and other reading...

Reason #120: Rest in Peace, Oral Roberts? Maybe not…

A researcher has uncovered the LDS proxy baptism and other proxy records of televangelist Oral Roberts. Old news, you might say.  Mormons “dead dunk” famous deceased people all the time. The problem?  Oral Roberts passed away this week, December 15, 2009. He was baptized by proxy and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints May 19-20, 2009, received his temple endowments on August 29, 2009, and was sealed to his (earthly) parents on October 13, 2009; all in the Mesa, Arizona LDS Temple, according to this researcher’s web site. The problem?  A church which insists on only its own ordinances for salvation AND which depends on direct revelation from God, should not have these kinds of problems…… For more...

Reason #119: Because “fastest-growing” isn’t a reason to believe

  Recently on a messageboard I ran across this chart and explanation.  Anyone want to check the math (or talk about the implications?): HOW TO USE THESE CHARTS The statistics with white backgrounds are ones reported by the church itself. The statistics with gray backgrounds are derived by subsequently “doing the math” on one’s own. The statistics with yellow borders (Starting with 1991) are approximations thanks to the church having rounded its numbers to the nearest thousand or ten thousand. All negative signs (“-“) should be interpreted as “a loss of.” If you’d like to check my math, click on the year to see the church’s official online Statistical Report for that particular year. In the following...

Book Review: The Mystery of the Cross

The Mystery of the Cross:  Bringing Ancient Christian Images to Life is a new book written by Judith Couchman (IVP.) This book is a treasure-trove of information, iconic representations, and insight.  It traces the history of the beloved symbol of Christianity from its uses by other cultures, to its literal meaning in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and through the first 1000 years of Christian history. Coming from a Mormon background and having spent the last 36 years in a church which is nearly devoid of liturgy, I found that much of what Couchman describes was completely unknown territory. I had vague ideas of why Catholics veil the altar during the Passion week but had no idea that the roots of Christian drama are probably found in an ancient...