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Gas lighting The Membership — Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
The Truth Network Radio
December 3, 2019 7:49 am

Gas lighting The Membership — Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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101 for teams is a valuable resource for anyone wanting a simplified view of the Mormon religion from a Christian perspective woman is one-to-one for teams is available at the Utah lighthouse bookstore in Salt Lake City or MRM.org .1 examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a viewpoint when 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 does the Mormon church manipulate its members. Welcome to this additional viewpoint on Mormonism on your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at MRM yesterday.

We began looking at an article the online version of this article is titled the gas lighting within Mormonism must stop and as we explained yesterday gas lighting is a term that really goes back to the 1944 movie with Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyd, a, and it's the use of psychological manipulation. Of course the movie that I'm referring to gaslight was where the husband was trying to make his wife seem like she was crazy by turning the gas lights are the gas lamps in the house up and down and then denying that it ever happened forcing her to think that she was perhaps going out of her mind. Well, two men who are cofounders of the truth and transparency foundation, which operates Mormon leaks.I/O and faith leaks.org wrote this article in the Eric using the Mormon church of using similar tactics when it comes to the membership of the Mormon church.

They are in fact using what they call psychological manipulation.

II think with their meaning.

By this is they are trying to keep their membership believing and as Peter F. Dorf said doubt your doubts. Instead of doubting your faith there trying to get them to go, doubting their doubts and lead them away from doubting the faith which of course from our perspective is what's causing those doubts.

In the first place. But yesterday we read a statement by M. Russell Ballard, who is cited in this online version of the article when on November 19 the Mormon church conducted with is called a face-to-face event with a group of single adults, and that was broadcast worldwide. One of the questions that was asked of these two morning apostles had to do with members and friends who were struggling with their faith, due to doubt and questions of church history and Ballard answered basically with this. He said just trust us wherever you are in the world and you share this message with anyone else that raises the question about the church, not being transparent.

We are as transparent as we know how to be in telling the truth what is the Bible have to say about that doesn't say in first John chapter 4 verse one that we are to try the spirits to see if they are from God because many false prophets have gone out into the world. First Thessalonians 521 says that we are to test everything and yet Mr. Ballard says just trust us when the information and the facts go contrary to what he saying that's what has always bothered us as missionaries to the Mormon people. When we talk to Latter Day Saints and they say things like, well, it doesn't matter what you present. I'm still going to believe it. Now most Mormons look at that kind of a statement with pride and loyalty to the Mormon system.

I would tend to look at that is not something to be proud of about because it tends to show that you don't care about facts and as Christians we care about facts. Truth is a major portion of our belief system. The word true and truth are found over and over again in the New Testament, and you need to go where the evidence leads you.

And certainly we see in the New Testament that they made arguments all the time about the fact such as the resurrection of Jesus in first Corinthians 15, Paul says, don't just take my word for it, though, and asked the 500+ who saw Jesus and and we want to do that because as Jesus said in Matthew chapter 7.

There are many wolves dressing up in sheep's clothing and we don't do that in any other aspect of our lives when somebody comes and says hey I got this great investment for you. It's making 10% a month were and asked for the background so that we want to see where that money is being invested or we will easily be put into a Ponzi scheme and we lose everything we have in other words, we want to see the prospectus. Yes, well in this quotation that is cited in this article, and Russell Ballard also cited Dr. James B.

Allen of Brigham Young University who in 1970, wrote an article about the different versions of the first vision and this was a big issue in this article, Ballard was trying to give the impression that hey, something was written about this back in 1970 and so were not hiding anything and that's the accusation that's often made that the Mormon churches hiding information. The authors of this article said wait a minute you can't go back 47 years and cite something from a magazine that was the improvement error which isn't even published any longer. It's now become the inside how many people know that it's not even available on LDS.org. You would think that would be one of the first places that a member would probably go to look would be LDS.org and you're not going to find it this far as we know you can't find that article on their but now the Mormon church has changed in recent years they have come clean on a lot of these issues, but the argument that's being made by these authors is the fact that you still see this gas lighting going on well after those two quotations were made by M. Russell Ballard, the author said this quote shows the narcissistic gas lighting tactics routinely employed by the leaders of the Mormon church. Then they go on to make this statement after citing their credentials, asserting their dominance and shame in the audience requesting a bold claim that rejects a skeptical mindset is made, the audience is subsequently directed to simply quote unquote trust those in authority, such rhetoric is invalidating discourages exploration and free thought, completely lacks even a shred of empathy and is thus abusive to active struggling and former Mormons alike to stop either because how many times have we experience when talking with someone who struggling with their Mormon faith and they tell us how they've gone to their bishop and asked these questions that have been raised after studying certain aspects of Mormon history or doctrine and the Bishop will say stop reading that or stop asking those questions or whoever's telling you that quit talking to them as if I heard Mormons tell me that when they brought up some of these questions to the Bishop. The first thing that there asked is where did you get that right as if all this information is nothing but a bunch of made up lies found only on what they would call "anti-Mormon websites is what we call poisoning the well poisoning the well and we have heard many Latter Day Saints who have written us and accused us of doing just that. My response to that is this most of what you will find on our website MRM.org you will see readily that are statements from Mormon sources. We have found that one of the best ways to carry on a convincing conversation with a Latter Day Saints is to show them primary sources we go to their own material and let their material speak for itself. If they think were taking something out of context well. Bike showing them the primary source they can tell us what the context is if they think we've taken it out of context that we would do us no good it would do them no good to be constantly taking things out of context. Our credibility would be ruined no time and it certainly wouldn't help them. If our motivation is based on what is truth is when you take things out of context, you're not really finding the truth. Taken out of context will lead you in a different direction. The authors go on in this article to say. Setting aside the reference to an obscure and hard to find, 1970 article in an attempt to claim the church never hid the existence of multiple first vision accounts. This is a textbook example of wanting to have your cake and eat it too. I think they have a point here because, as we mentioned earlier how it was a Mormon going to know where to look for a question such as that nowadays on the Internet. It certainly makes it easier but what would a member have had to do back in 1970. If someone had read this article by Alan this morning the story and that Ballard was citing it did not have access to the hard copy. How would they know where would they go they don't have an Internet back there. The Internet doesn't come out till mid 1990s and later it starts getting really popular, but before then you had to do it the old-fashioned way. Check it out. Read it for yourself in hard copy and I go on and they said, apparently in the minds of God's handpicked elite fleeting references to issues that would cause an otherwise believing Mormon to put their eternal salvation and peril constitutes being open and honest about church history and it goes on and says let us stipulate for the sake of this discussion that each and every issue in church history that has lead a person to abandon their faith in Mormonism has been at some point written about in a church publication. Despite this, most ex-Mormons found themselves denying the truthfulness of these issues until they inevitably read it in an obscure publication which they considered to be quote unquote approved material. I think they make a very good point there. Most ex-Mormons found themselves denying the truthfulness of these things of these issues, that's absolutely true, you would hive experiences over number. I'll never forget one time discussing the issue about Jesus with a Mormon and I happened to bring up that Jesus and Lucifer were brothers. He did not know this. He thought I was making it up. That's usually the first direction that many Mormons go they think you're making it up. Rarely do you find a Mormon stop and say, oh where did you hear that I've never read that before. Could you please show me the reference it's usually a flat out denial event notice that I have and I think what they're saying here is absolutely correct because many Mormons will deny the truthfulness of an issue until they read it for themselves and this is why when I mentioned earlier that if you use the historical method of arguing or converse scene with a Latter Day Saints. It's helpful to have the information in hand at the time they go on to write the fact that the research department at the church office building can feed Russell Ballard with a 50-year-old reference does not negate the fact that the Mormon church has manipulated the facts surrounding its own history since its inception.

I think they again they are making a good point. It did seem odd to me when they cited that statement from M. Russell Ballard, that it was a 50-year-old reference. They couldn't come up with something a little bit more recent, at least in a publication that still in print they had to go clear back to 1970 to come up with an example. You would think that alone if I was in the group that was questioning Dallen Oakes and M. Russell Ballard at the time. That alone if I was questioning would've raise flags for me. What is it apostle Ballard you have to go back 47 years specifically to come up with a reference that support your premise. You can come up with something more recent course they wouldn't come up with the gospel topics essays because we all know that those essays were supposed to put an end to this kind of questioning. So that would be a little bit difficult to use that as an example because they're trying to show in this case that the church is always been open. That just isn't the case. It has not been as open as church leaders would like you to believe. Thank you for listening.

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