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One member is examining the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a biblical 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 you agree with us for this edition viewpoint on Mormonism.
I'm your host Bill McKeever Felder director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is a good friend of mine, Don Vino that's BEI and OT Don Vino he's with Midwest Christian outreach. If you want to check out his website its Midwest outreach.OR G and Don is the president of EM and are evangelical missions to non-Christian religions. Don is the president. I am a board member. I've been board member with EM and are for quite a few years now and and we won't let Don resign as president either.
So Don wrote an article titled is liberalism. Another religion you actually read it with your wife Joy okay and we were talking about this yesterday because it's based on a book that was written by John Gresham may change now.
If you're not familiar with that name. As I explained yesterday John Gresham made each and was a New Testament scholar. He lived between 1881 and 1937 and he used to teach at Princeton seminary and as I was mentioning yesterday. A lot of these these Ivy League schools as they're called now. They began as Christian institutions and yesterday you were mentioning a book written by William F.
Buckley, a Roman Catholic apologist who was talking about how Yale had left the Christian faith and and this is what we're discussing here folks is because there have always been certain things that Christians have adhered to that have made them what they are and when an organization or even an ideology separates from those fundamentals of the Christian faith, then naturally, Christians have the mandate to rise up and say wait a minute. We need to talk about this.
So maybe chin. He really was a Prof. of New Testament at Princeton.
He saw the rise of liberalism, and as your article implies here by the title Don is liberalism. Another religion that's exactly what matron was saying and so we see liberalism, raising its ugly head within the confines of Christianity, but you know it's interesting Mormonism even has its own problem with liberalism, mechanicals, and oh, a different direction as well, but they have to struggle with trying to keep orthodoxy."" Even within the structures of Mormonism going in the straight path and and I think they're having a struggle with that right now on at least some of the social issues what they're going to be 10 years down the road remains to be seen yesterday we were talking about this. This interesting phenomenon and you would been talking to me about how maybe chin criticizes this idea of emotions and feelings over theology.
Let's talk about that a little bit because I find there's a comparison between the two. So Don, welcome to the show what we talk about that aspect of what matron is talking about that is this idea of how feelings and emotions should reign supreme in theology tends to take more of a back seat which I think is one of the problems that we see within Christianity because theology is not emphasized like it used to be. And many Christians really don't know what they believe or why they believe it well that that's true. Unfortunately, we have with cut of the amount I don't know if you name names, but I tend to do that here the seeker sensitive purpose driven whatever becomes essentially contentless faith.
It is something that says let's get more people in here so we can chemistry to partner with what we believe the gospel is but we don't find that in Scripture. Actually, we find that that doctrine is very important. Your feelings are not as important, and in matron continually makes this case about making historical statements like Jesus died and rose from the grave that's historically true.
But then he says or become a doctor is a Jesus died and rose from the grave for my salvation, that is, doctrine and your emotions are just not relevant to the discussion and mean not as an important and how you live may or may not even effective for Jeffrey because the sling on the golden rule because so many want to peeled you will fight live rightly God will accept me if you live according to the golden rule and he says that this is not as important, if our Fuddruckers. The trouble is that the drunkards companions apply the rule only too well the golden rule they do unto him exactly what they would have him do unto them by buying them a drink. The golden rule becomes a powerful obstacle in the way of moral advance right if you don't have doctrine inculcated into what's going on and you don't understand the reason for the statements, then you can come to all sorts of erroneous conclusions because morality no longer is important how we live before God. He goes on to say that Eric consistence opposing the golden rule with the rest of the sermon on the Mount is addressed to the whole world as a matter of fact the whole discourse is expressly addressed to the Jesus disciples and from them. The great world outside is distinguished in the plainest possible way the persons to whom the golden rule is addressed are persons in whom a great change has been wrought in other words, are already believers, are change which fits them for their entrance into the kingdom of God.
Such persons will have pure desires and they and only they can safely do unto others as they would have others do unto them for the things that they would have others do unto them are high and pure. So it is with the whole of the discourse. The new law, the sermon on the Mount is in itself can only produce despair if you and we'll talk about this yesterday. If you look at the sermon on the mount and realize what Jesus is saying, you realize that the attempt to bridge the gap between us and God is just so fast there's no way we can do it. It should bring us to despair but in our motions have no impact on Madison. We have to know what the truth really is with you right now we live according to that in light of what you just said there and this is something that we hear sometimes in talking with Latter Day Saints about this idea of them wanting to get closer to God and they get closer to God by keeping commandments and keeping their covenants and set but I often argue against that done, you would probably relate to what I'm about to say. It seems that if a Christian starts to really look at himself for the sinner and fallen individual that he really is and starts to understand as he grows in Christ how holy and righteous God really is, instead of the gap getting less and less. Really we see it getting more and more distant, but at the same time, that doesn't cause us despair because we recognize that in acknowledging that fact that that's exactly what Jesus came to bridge right through his death on the cross so is much as we see the distance between ourselves and all holy God being so much further and further away you might say we don't despair because his love is just the same because of the fact that we have put our trust in what he did for us on the cross of Calvary right definitions become all important you know you and I were Kevlar enough you know that I'm really really really interested in definitions from you. Give me a word restaurant question I want to know what do you mean so when we say grace. The definition of that is a kindly attitude toward the undeserving is clear and simple.
That's how the word was originally used. It is how God views us that we are unworthy, and he loves us anyway you have groups like Mormonism who we define grace to be sovereign power some abilities and enabling powers exactly how it's worded in their own publications right now. God may give you enabling power but that's not grace.
And so when you redefine the terminology you have now have created just what are not the religion itself that's over dealing with here.
He talks about this idea of feelings which you had asked earlier with regard to this objection, it ought to be observed that if religion consists merely in feeling the presence of God. It is devoid of any moral quality. What ever right feeling has to be attached to something objectively true, correct, and he goes on to make that pure feeling.
If there is be such a thing is non-moral is neither good nor bad. It's just a feeling. What makes affection for human friend.
For example, such an ennobling thing is the knowledge which we possess of the character of our friend right so if we don't have a right definition of God. Whatever feeling we might have about a faith is not relevant. It has to be tied to something that is objectively definable and true correct our faith.
In other words, is only as good as the object in which we put it right so if if, for instance, Joseph Smith invents a new God who is not always God became God at a particular point in time.
God, who is a body of flesh and bones and was once a human and we don't see that God being described in the New Testament, then I think we are completely within our rights to raise her hand and object and say wait a minute, this cannot be a part of the Christian faith. You have distance yourself from the Christian faith and that's all were saying were to say what you call yourself. Whatever you want but if you're going to try and use our title and confuse people by that and like you said earlier, not being totally honest with people, then I think we have. As I said earlier, a mandate to object to that in recent questions and challenge them on what they're saying or exactly at the Alaska packages which is what makes him does on on this whole idea traces that without belief, no type of religion can rightly appeal to Jesus. Jesus was a theist. This is really important and rational theism is at the basis of Christianity.
Jesus was a theist he believed in one true God. Not multiple gods not God is everything. He wasn't a Hindu he wasn't a Buddhist. He wasn't a Mormon. He believed in one true God. He was a theist so the problem in my opinion that liberals have is that they have allows for too many gods. That's why some of the religion Mormonism has the same problem. They believe in multiple gods that suggest teachings and beliefs of Jesus himself, and sometimes a more normal counter that disabled. We believe there is only one God for this world.
And that's not even a true statement because in Mormonism.
They have three gods within their Godhead. All of those three gods are something that Mormons are supposed to believe and they'll have a function even in the context of Mormonism. So, at best, you would have the father the son and the Holy Ghost of Mormonism being three distinct gods, not a Trinity because they deny the Trinity. And so when they argue, will we only have one God for this earth. That's really not a true statement in Christian, I would advise you that it would probably be best to challenge any Latter Day Saints friend that you have that uses that type of an argument to make it appear that Mormons are not in fact polytheists, or even a best handle theist because they certainly do believe in more than one true God, and that becomes problematic. It becomes problematic not only in the theology that we hold on. It also becomes problematic with the book of Mormon that teaches that there is only one God. So tomorrow I want to continue this conversation, but we're been talking with Don Vino. He is the director of Midwest Christian outreach. If you want to check out his website its Midwest outreach.org thank you for listening.
If you would like more information is research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website www.mrm.org you can request a free newsletter Mormonism research. We hope you will join us again as we look at another viewpoint is looking for strategies that will help you engage in meaningful conversations with members of the Mormon church.
So take a look at sharing the good news with Mormons new book produced by harvest House publishers and headed to my Mormonism research ministries Eric Johnson and Shawn Miguel showing the good news with Mormons includes 24 helpful essays from two dozen Christian apologist scholars and pastors pick up your copy of the Utah lighthouse bookstore court order directly from MRM.org