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Thanksgiving Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
The Truth Network Radio
November 19, 2020 8:10 pm

Thanksgiving Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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November 19, 2020 8:10 pm

Bill and Eric read some of the mail they received during the past year and reflect on 2020–an interesting year indeed!

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Viewpoint on Mormonism, the program that examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from a Biblical perspective. Viewpoint on Mormonism is sponsored by Mormonism Research Ministry. Since 1979, Mormonism Research Ministry has been dedicated to equipping the body of Christ with answers regarding the Christian faith in a manner that expresses gentleness and respect. And now your host for today's Viewpoint on Mormonism. Welcome to this edition of Viewpoint on Mormonism. I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director of Mormonism Research Ministry, and with me today is Eric Johnson, my colleague at MRM. Well, for those of you that are listening in the United States, you know that this is the day after Thanksgiving, and as I mentioned in yesterday's show, we have made it a tradition here at Mormonism Research Ministry to use our Viewpoint on Mormonism broadcast to just share some of the emails, comments, and such that we have received from listeners such as yourselves, and also from readers who subscribe to our newsletter, Mormonism Research. We are thankful for all your very encouraging comments. We thank you for telling us about some of the results that you have received as Christians, taking the material that we supply here at MRM and using it in your witnessing situation. So we want to share some of the things that we have been sent through this past year with you and hope that you can rejoice with us as we talk about some of these comments that we have received.

What's the first one today, Eric? Recently, I've been doing morning walks at Liberty Park, and I catch you and Eric on the radio on my way home. I really like the show. It's interesting, informative, rational, and really well done. And that's certainly encouraging because, as we mentioned yesterday, I think it was you that mentioned it, Eric, we do put a lot of time into these shows. I remember one time a person told me that they were amazed because we were broadcast here in the Salt Lake area at like 5.30 in the morning at the time, and they were shocked at just how awake we seemed to be at that early in the morning. I had to chuckle because, no, the reason why it sounds good, I guess you could say, is because we have good editing.

And so we can get the ums and the ahs and other dead air cleaned up out of it. But we do thank this person for making that comment. If you're not in the Salt Lake area, you may not know, Liberty Park is a very large park in Salt Lake City.

So that's what he's referring to. Sometimes I know we mentioned geographical locations on the show, and we want to be careful to explain what we're talking about because we know this show is being listened to really all over the world. Now if you miss us on the radio show that day, you can always go to our website,, and there's a button at the top, or you can just go slash podcast, and you can listen to those shows that you have missed. Another person has written, this morning, a 25 minute video of yours entitled, The Untold Story of the Death of Joseph Smith popped up on my YouTube. There was nothing there that I didn't already know, but your presentation was very well prepared and delivered.

I liked it. First time I've heard this presented as an explanation rather than an attack. And Bill, I have to laugh because this video was done on the spur of the moment after dinner with you and Aaron, and he just started filming you and all you did was talk. You didn't even prepare for it, but just went off the top of your head of the knowledge that you have. And that video has over 600,000 hits on YouTube. Yeah, I remember when Aaron and his wife Stacy had come over for dinner and he brought a camera and a tripod and he asked, well, can I just film you on the death of Joseph Smith? I was not prepared. You're absolutely correct.

I think the only thing I did was I grabbed Richard L. Bushman's book and had that in front of me during part of it. But I'm glad that that extemporaneous video that was put together has had this kind of a result. You're right. We've had over 600,000 visits to that video. Now, some of the Mormons, however, don't believe I'm telling the truth. But what's amazing is sometimes when you read the comments after a Mormon criticizes me saying that I'm not telling the truth, another Mormon will write and say, no, everything on there is absolutely correct. And I love to see the back and forth among Mormons when it comes to that. But there certainly is a lot regarding the death of Joseph Smith that many people are not familiar with. And hence that's the title, The Untold Story. It's not that this has been hidden by the LDS church.

It's not told enough at best. So I'm glad that that video has had the kind of response that it has had over the many years that it's been posted. Another email says, thank you for MRM, its impact on their lives, Mormons who are hearing the word now and your help in educating me about the Mormon faith. And that's what we're hoping to do. We've always stated that Mormonism Research Ministry has a twofold purpose. One, we want to educate the body of Christ as to what the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints really teaches. And also we want to reach out to the Mormons themselves. One-on-one evangelism is a big thing to us, and we want to also equip Christians to be able to do that one-on-one with their coworkers or fellow students, or even their family, which we know is a very important but very difficult task in trying to reach your family who may be members of the LDS church. But if we can educate people in how to talk with them, what to bring up, what to avoid, how to say some things to where they have a more definite impact in their lives.

If we can do that, we feel satisfied because that's what we're hoping to do. Bill, you might have critique from some Latter-day Saints who would say, well, you're a Christian. How can you talk about Mormonism with any kind of expertise?

How would you respond to somebody who would ask that? Well, I fully admit that I was never a Latter-day Saint. So they're correct that there are a lot of experiences that I have not had that a Latter-day Saint would have probably had.

I agree to that. But when we're talking about the history and the theology of the LDS church, I don't think it's necessary that you have to be a former member to understand what Mormons believe about certain things or what Mormon leaders have said or done in the past. Anybody can learn from just reading their own material. And you'll notice, folks, we are often citing primary sources when we do our research. We don't necessarily go to books written about the Mormon church, though there are many good ones out there. In fact, we have interviewed a lot of people who have written very good books on the subject of Mormonism. But we go right to their sources.

We go to the sources that their leadership wants them to believe and read. And we feel that's where you get the most mileage when you're talking to a Latter-day Saint is to use their own material. So I don't think I have to have a Mormon background to understand Mormon theology.

First of all, I think for all of us as Christians, we have to have a good understanding of our theology in order to make a comparison with what the Latter-day Saints are being told to believe. Another email says, so grateful for your ministry of evangelism and truth, asking God to open doors for Africa trips and anywhere he chooses. Let me address the Africa trip because we had planned in the year 2020 to go back to Africa. I've been there twice now and have a great love for the African people and have some very good connections over there, working with a group that was started by a good friend of ours, Paul Carden in Southern California.

It's the African Center for Apologetics Research. And we had planned to go back in 2020. Well, what happened? The COVID-19 outbreak took place and naturally flights were all canceled and meetings were shut down. Uganda, unfortunately, had a very strict lockdown. If you thought we had it difficult here, they had much more difficulty in Uganda. And my heart goes out to those people because if you even went outside during this time, the police would beat you with sticks.

We don't experience things like that here. So if you will pray for our brothers and sisters over in the African nations, I would personally certainly appreciate that. But let me just say this, even though we were not able to go back in 2020, folks, we are chomping at the bit to get out again and get into some of these countries and share the gospel and a critique of what the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has to say. Because in these countries, the Mormon missionaries have been quite active.

Now they haven't been in the year 2020. So you might say all that we've gone through this last year, there's been some good effects from that. It has prevented the Mormon missionaries from being out there going door to door and deceiving people regarding their doctrine.

But we have to admit it's also hindered us too. But like I say, we are looking forward for this to be over with, and we can get back out there and start sharing the gospel with Christians so that they might be able to share the gospel with their Mormon acquaintances. Another one says, Thank you for the work you and others are doing to expose the heirs of the LDS church. I was a member of the church for many decades, married in the temple, etc.

I knew it was true. Then God rescued me through people like yourselves. It is as plain as day to me the problems of the doctrine now, and I often wonder why I couldn't see it then, and why my family and friends can't see the truth today.

It is so obvious, but they refuse to even talk about it. May God bless you. I think this letter is a good example of how it takes the Holy Spirit to open the eyes of the blind. And this is not an unusual comment that we hear from many who have come out of the LDS church. Once your eyes are opened, you look back and you go, Why didn't I see this? In thinking that, you tend to use that thought in your evangelism.

And that can be a little bit dangerous because you can end up being a bit overly aggressive with your family members or your other LDS acquaintances. And we need to have patience. Oftentimes when I've had people write me and they say something like this, and they're just perplexed, why don't they listen to me?

The question that I'll often ask them is, Well, how long did it take you to see? I'm sure it didn't happen overnight. We have to wait on the Holy Spirit to open the eyes of the blind. We firmly believe that people are not saved by good arguments.

Hear me out, folks. In saying that, that does not relieve us of the duty to give good arguments. I think as Christians, we are supposed to give the best arguments we possibly can. And then we allow the Holy Spirit to do what he wills with that information.

But certainly we do believe that this is a work of God. We thank you for the work of God in this individual's life. And folks, I hope that you will also pray for this individual's family and friends who are still entrapped in Mormonism. Let me read two more, Bill. The first one, you folks are a special group and God is using you to reach the Mormon people for Jesus.

God bless you. And another, I enjoy reading your newsletter and other information you send. And you've helped me in the past when the Mormons come knocking at my door.

Please continue to send me info at my new address. What I like about this note, Eric, is that we've helped this individual in the past when the Mormons come knocking at their door. How many times have we said, preparing for the missionaries coming to your door is not when you hear the knock on the door. You need to be prepared beforehand.

You need to have a game plan. What are you going to say? What are you going to ask? Certainly you want to be a good ambassador for Jesus Christ.

So I'm encouraged that we were able to be a help in this individual's life. Bill, we do have a newsletter called Mormonism Researched. If somebody wants to get that, what do they have to do? All they need to do is go to our website and there is a place there to sign up for the newsletter. That's a PDF version. If you want a hard copy version that you write us at contact at and ask for that specifically. We do not send hard copies, for instance, overseas or even to Canada or Mexico because the postage is just prohibitive. And so if you're outside of the United States, we'd be glad to send you a PDF copy. And sometimes people request the PDF copy because it goes to their computer and they have Mormons in the house, perhaps a Mormon spouse or children that are LDS, and they don't want to cause any undue angst with their family members.

And so in the privacy of their own home, they can read the newsletter on their computer. And let me just finish up by again, thanking all of you who listened to this show for your nice comments, your generous support. We just ask for your prayers in this coming year so that we can see more and more Latter-day Saints come to a saving faith in the Jesus of the Bible. Get another viewpoint on Mormonism.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-26 04:31:50 / 2024-01-26 04:37:32 / 6

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