Thanks for your very well-written and well-thought-out article.
Yes, our freedom is something that is very precious to Mormons. In fact, one of the revelations which Joseph Smith received from Jesus says that God inspired good men to write the Constitution to safeguard our liberties. So we consider the Constitution very close to being scripture.
Thanks again for a very well-written article.
Posted by M. Jones on 04/30 at 09:19 AM | #
I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints here in Oregon. I also have a degree in journalism from BYU (1995)
I thank you for your fair and balanced account of our beliefs. I can find no fault with them, and I for one am grateful for fair-minded non-Mormons like you who ask members of our church about what we believe instead of going to the internet and looking up our church. Go to the source, right?
Posted by Jenny on 04/29 at 08:49 AM | #
Very few Mormons will "balk at [your] making comparisons between their religious beliefs and modern politics" because what you said in your article is dead on. I for one am not offended. Great article.
Posted by Pete on 04/28 at 10:04 PM | #
I loved your article. Keep writing!
Posted by Guest on 04/28 at 11:28 AM | #
People who don't understand Mormon theology should read this. He did an excellent job explaining some of the core of our beliefs, albeit with his own political slant. But, he wasn't objectionable at all. He obviously sincerely wanted to understand why we are who we are.
I want to make a couple points.
First, God rejected Satan’s plan for good reason. Satan was already in rebellion to God when he offered it. Satan offered an alternate plan because he wanted to keep the glory of saving mankind ALL TO HIMSELF. Christ offered to follow God's plan and give ALL the GLORY TO GOD. Satan offered a selfish alternate to God’s own will. Selfishness is cause and effect when we disobey God's will.
We believe our agency, our free will, is a gift from God. All we have here in this earth life is essentially a gift from Him. Consequently, the only thing that is truly our OWN that we can give back to Him in return is our will, our freedom to choose to live according to His will, or our own selfish desires.
This is where the Ten Commandments, those old-fashioned ideas, come into play. He gave them to us to guide us, and help us live lives of freedom and happiness. Break one of those commandments consistently enough, and you will find your personal freedom to choose has been diminished. They don’t bind us, they free us. They are not out-dated at all.
The correct name for our church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We believe we are in the last days of the earth, and of the war. The Bible speaks of these times. Read Daniel and Isaiah. The Ten Commandments, God’s own laws are under fierce attack as Satan unleashes all his minions to try to destroy the happiness and salvation of mankind, once and for all. And this, for most LDS people, is where religious beliefs and politics come together. We believe in supporting laws that uphold ALL the Ten Commandments, not just personal liberty.
It’s not just the cause of liberty we fight for. Believing as we do, it makes sense to fight for all righteous causes. There are political differences even among LDS people, but when I exercise my God-given agency and vote as my conscience guides, I will always vote to uphold those laws that most closely align with God’s laws.
Posted by Lisa on 04/26 at 02:18 AM | #
Enjoyed, and agree with the bottom line of this article.
Posted by Darell Outhier on 04/25 at 11:02 AM | #
WOW!! That was one of the BEST explanations of our basic doctrine I've ever found on this wonderful miracle called the internet. And the BEST I've ever read by someone who is not LDS. Very few people do enough research to be able to explain it so clearly and accurately.
In addition to being impressed by that, I am also impressed by your ability to see how the concept of liberty relates to our doctrine. Even many MEMBERS of the Church don't think that deeply about it or can't see it clearly.
I read one of the comments by someone who used to be LDS and I think there is a grain of truth to his/her experience. Many Latter-Day Saints do not value liberty as much as we should considering it is at the CORE of the reason for the war in heaven. Many of us fear liberty because we think the cause of many of the terrible things we see in the world today is the result of TOO much liberty, therefore the solution is to have less liberty.
I don't think it's a necessarily a result of hypocrisy or anything more nefarious- but just the result of a misunderstanding of liberty and what causes people to do bad things. Mormons, like everyone else, are learning and growing every day and just trying to make sense of life and the world around them.
But, out of anyone, you are RIGHT- we SHOULD have a better understanding of liberty because of our doctrine. Understanding liberty doesn't come from a place of fear and I think that is what we have to overcome.
Posted by L. Wooldridge on 04/24 at 05:24 PM | #
I, like the other commentators, am greatly impressed with your understanding of Latter-Day Saint doctrine, particularly the essential elements of free agency and the Plan of Salvation. I encourage you to continue your investigation into our religion, and to always feel free to share your findings. It is very refreshing to hear from someone who has taken the time to truly study our beliefs and then talk about them publicly within the correct context. Again, thanks for posting, and may God bless you as well as the leaders of this nation!!
Posted by Skyler Hansen on 04/22 at 05:26 PM | #
Posted by Mike Jensen on Jan 23, 2013 at 12:12 AM
I’m inspired by this Mormon theological idea: God intended for humans to be free to make our own choices and live with the consequences of those choices.
During the 2012 presidential campaign, that awesomely deep well of perpetual wisdom, Alec Baldwin, proclaimed that if Barack Obama were not black, his vote total would have been 20 percent higher.More...
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