Monday, March 12, 2007

Why Is the Mormon Church So Deceptive?

On Saturday, March 10th, I went with a group from St. John's to see an exhibit of the Dead Sea Scrolls at the visitors center in Kirtland, Ohio. We went there to see the exhibit, as well as, take a tour of their historic village and temple. Joseph Smith was in Kirtland from 1831 to 1838 and their church was headquartered there.
But, I can not remember a time in my life where I have been more disgusted with what I saw. What we witnessed was the Mormon church at its deceptive finest and a classic bait and switch! Instead of it being an objective presentation of the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS), they attempted to draw connections between the community that many people believe produced the DSS and the Mormon doctrine and practice. One particular example was the strict dietary restrictions of the Essene community that produced the DSS. They said that the Mormons are the community that continues these strict religious observances and therefore, the Mormons are the restored church.
What upset me the most was in the room in which they were displaying their copies of many of the DSS. As you walked around the room, you listened to a running commentary of what you were seeing. Throughout the commentary was Mormon propaganda. And to top it off, at the very end of the exhibit was a table that contained the Bible, as well as, the Book of Mormon. They were saying loud and clear that the Book of Mormon was in line with the Biblical writings of the DSS and should therefore be believed and accepted as God's Word.
Now, anyone who has studied the Mormon church at all knows that they believe the Book of Mormon to be an additional revelation of God's Word. But, to "hijack" and manipulate the DSS, in such a way, as to say that Mormon doctrine and practice can be legitimized in the DSS is from a scholarly point of view, extremely dishonest and from a Christian point of view, deceptive and unbelievably evil.
After we walked around looking at the exhibit, we had a question-and-answer period with one of the leading elders. I raised my hand and asked point blank, "How can you possibly draw any conclusions whatsoever between the DSS and Mormon teaching? Is this honest?" From there, we debated Mormon doctrine for the next 30 minutes or so. Members of our congregation and myself rebuked the man one point after the other. At one point, he tried to dismiss me by saying that nowhere in the Bible does it say that church should pay their clergy. He also said that he was a former judge and that I was getting dangerously close to contempt. I was offending him and was out of order. If I was out of order, than so be it! I could not believe that they had the audacity to do what they were doing and someone had to say something!
At still a later point, as we were watching a video on the history of the temple in Kirtland, the presenter was talking about what the original temple looked liked when it was built in the 1830's. Because the early Mormon people were relatively poor, they couldn't afford the finest materials. So, they tried to create an illusion, with paint and other materials, to make it look more expensive, elaborate and majestic. How ironic! The Mormon church trying to make themselves look different than they actually are! There is no greater deception that goes on in our world today than what the Mormon church is involved in! I am dedicating myself to continual study, as much as I possibly can, so that I can renounce them at every level. I have never seen so many people lie, with a straight face, or worse yet, with a smile. Lord have mercy!