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Tithing and Temples Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
The Truth Network Radio
January 5, 2021 8:30 pm

Tithing and Temples Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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Mormonism 101 is research ministries Bill McKeever and Eric Johnson has helped many more to understand what separates Mormonism from the Christian faith. Mormonism 101 is available at your favorite Christian bookstore online. .1 examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a perspective view .1 Mormonism 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 so glad to be with us for the submission of viewpoint on Mormonism.

I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder director Mormonism research ministry with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM we are looking at an article that was published on March 26, 2018.

An article written by Peggy Fletcher stack titled does tithing requirement for entry into LDS temples about Mormons buying their way into heaven, and as I mentioned in the first show I think a lot of the points that she is bringing out in this piece goes along very nicely with a piece that I wrote a long time ago called tithing by coercion and as I mentioned when I posted that article I was receiving emails from Latter Day Saints, who felt personally. They were not giving out of a coercive attitude on the part of the church, but they were giving freely and I don't want to take away from that. I'm sure there are a lot of Latter Day Saints who like myself, want to give to their church to further the cause of their church.

I get that. I understand that but when the church tells its people that if they don't tie that they risk their exultation in the celestial kingdom that, in our opinion, crosses the line of what the New Testament teaches about giving towards the cause of the church of the as we would say the cause of Christ and certainly there is no place in the New Testament that even mentions any such law of tithing is a requirement for Christian believers, we are supposed to give out of the abundance of our heart. We are supposed to give because we want to give, and it shouldn't be any type of coercion being used against us in order to give to our churches where they call that bill pay to play and that seems to be the case in Mormonism. If you want to be able to have any opportunity to go to the celestial kingdom you're gonna have to pay that tithing dollar.

There's no doubt about it willing yesterday show we read the paragraph in Peggy Fletcher sex article where it says morbid leaders reject the notion that the process to gain a recommend and this is referring to a temple recommend an ID card that you get when you qualify for entrance into a Mormon Temple. They reject the notion that the process to gain a recommend for entrance to an LDS temple is a form of salvation.

Black male will of course they would deny that I can't even imagine a Mormon leader admitting to something like that. It's just unfathomable that they would ever say something like that whether or not they say it.

What does it look like it most certainly looks like a form of salvation black male when you say to the member. If you don't pay your tide, you're not going to get exultation. It's kind of like a mobster going up to an individual who owes the mob money saying if you don't pay what you owe us on the break your kneecaps only in this case were talking about your eternal salvation. Your kneecaps will heal after so many months, but your eternal salvation is something that's going to last. Eat slowly so it does look like a type of salvation black male with church leaders want to admit it or not. In the next part of Peggy Fletcher sex article she cites for a Mormon historian, Matthew Bowman, who's a professor at Arkansas's Henderson State University and is the author of the book the Mormon people. The making of an American faith.

This is what the article says sure tithing may seem like buying your way into heaven in a very strict and misleading way. Bowman says but I don't know why that seems more offensive to modern sensibilities than say the requirement that one attend one Sunday meetings and I would respond to that same statement by saying both of them are offensive to my Christian sensibilities.

Now don't get me wrong folks. I love going to church. I look forward to Sunday morning and gathering with other like-minded believers to listen to and encouraging. Perhaps even a convicting sermon that gets in my backyard. I love going to church, but if my pastor ever got up and said that if I don't go to every church service that my eternal life is in jeopardy. I would immediately find that quite offensive and certainly un-biblical.

So when Matthew Bowman says I don't know why that seems more offensive to modern sensibilities than say the requirement that one attend one Sunday meetings. I would say that both offensive to me as a New Testament Christian and if the Mormon feels that they too are New Testament Christians. I would think it should be at least offensive to them, but apparently to some it's not now. I'm sure there are some within the Mormon church that might have a problem with this comparison and don't like the idea that their church is imposing this requirement on them for their eternal exultation and so stack goes on and writes this to some the bigger question is, should the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints do away not with tithing, but with tithing as a prerequisite for accessing the temple and is exalting ordinances by which members can qualify for celestial glory. What you think about that Erica would you answer that question. Do you think it should be one or the other.

Well it you have to understand this is a religion built en masse as we talked about it yesterday show and so I can't see how they couldn't make it a prerequisite because it lets us be honest more than two thirds of the money that comes into the Mormon church comes in through tithing. It's not through their investments they do have a lot of money. They have investments. Of course, but if people did not feel that it was necessary. What is the use of all of the temples. They keep building all over the place, even in places that really shouldn't be able to support a temple because I think that's the carrot in front of the cart and the horse is looking for that carrot and is never going to be able to get what is promised there and I think that's what the Mormon Temple has is you can come and yet even going through our temple, and doing the ordinances for yourself and your relatives. You still can't know if you have eternal life. Yet when I look at this question that is raised here.

This hypothetical question by Peggy Fletcher stack should the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints do away not with tithing, but with tithing as a prerequisite for accessing the temple and its exalting ordinances.

I don't think anybody's telling the Mormon church or even implying that the Mormon church should get rid of their law of tithing up personally as a Christian I don't think there is a loft tithing in the New Testament just isn't you can't find it anywhere. This is something that Joseph Smith takes it from the Old Testament, certainly, but you won't find anywhere in the New Testament that there is a law of tithing for the church. I don't think anybody saying get rid of that. Although I think it's on biblical but I do think a lot of people are wondering should be used as a prerequisite for accessing the temple if that has something to do with a salvific ordinance and it is salvific. I can see why they would have a question with that connection the word tithing is not even found in the New Testament it comes from Malachi, certainly in Old Testament principal. What we find in the New Testament. According to acts and also Corinthians is the idea of generous giving.

The Bible talks about that but never sets a percentage. I think 10%'s a good place to start. But for the idea that if the church is supposed to be a restoration of Christianity. There certainly is no evidence whatsoever from the pages of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, all the way, the book of Revelation.

The Peggy Fletcher stack cites Patrick Mason, whose Mormon scholars.

Southern California's Claremont graduate University. He says something I think we need to comment on it does create a strong incentive for the practice among the faithful. The corollary that removing the requirement would lead to decreased rates and amounts of type pain also seems commonsensical. He raises an interesting point and I think this is where we can chide our own in this area. If in fact the Mormon Church was to stop this law of tithing is this individual.

Patrick Mason concedes the amount of revenue coming in from membership would decrease. So he said that makes common sense.

I wonder though for us as Christians, do we give in order to get back something let's say, even from the government. If we are giving in order to get a tax deduction. Are we any less guilty than the Mormons who were giving in order to get something else from gutsy I don't even give in order to get a tax deduction. If our government was to decide tomorrow that no longer would we get a tax deduction for our charitable giving to a church.

I don't think you would have any effect on my giving whatsoever because I'm not giving for the tax deduction. I would hope that Christians if there giving from their heart.

They're not giving for the tax deduction either. And that's a great question to ask us as Christian believers if the government was to take away the tax deduction would we stop giving like we give now or what about the word of faith. Teachers who say that you have to give.

If you want to receive. And don't just pray about getting a portion pray about which kind of Porsche what color and everything else. Be specific. But first you have to give to this ministry. I think that's just as wrong and so there are people calling themselves Christians who also are I think there tithing pie coercion because people are going to want to get to them because of what they're going to get out of giving and I would say I would be so bold to say that even in the realm of the word of faith people within the "realm of Christianity.

I would have problems with them again if you were giving in order to get something back from God think you're giving is going to amount to anything in the eyes of God.

I think that is a work that will be burned up for sure. But then she quotes Dean Michael Quinn D. Michael Quinn is a historian they used to call him a Mormon historian, but he was excommunicated in the 1990s, but he makes an interesting statement where he says it at least she she cites him as saying the church's revenue would plummet warns the Michael Quinn who was excommunicated for his historical writings but remains a firm believer, the church's revenue would plummet if that's true, and again he's only surmising this is a theory that he has, but if the church revenue with plummet. If the Mormon church was to reverse its position on this alleged law of tithing.

Doesn't that tell you that a lot of Mormons at least in his estimation are not really giving from their heart. He did a lot of research in a book that I actually read call the Mormon hierarchy wealth and corporate power and what he did as he took 2010 statistics and and compared them all the way through the history of the church and where the money came from but this is an amazing stat he came up with because there's not a whole lot that we have to be able to know for sure, but he reports in 2010, the church took him $33 billion. That's billion with a B in tithing. And then I took in 15 billion from stocks, bonds, taxable businesses and other enterprises. Two thirds of the money coming into the church is through tithing. This is a huge part of what the wealth of the Mormon church is all about. They can't lose us and as he says if you were to no longer make that mandatory Peggy Fletcher stack said that he said the church's revenue would plummet that seems to tell me that if he's right. And again, we don't know because it hasn't happened and so there's never been a test case.

But if he is correct in their revenue would plummet if they were to take away the law of tithing. It tends to show me that a lot of Mormons are not giving generously from their heart.

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