Saturday, January 28, 2012

Can Christians Vote For A Mormon?

This blog has been reserved to glorify Jesus, answer questions about the Christian faith and also sometimes just have some fun. We do not have issues that are about controversy for the sake of attention. Politics and faith do interact. How they do is to be carefully evaluated.
I was approached by a reader Janis Hutchinson about being a guest blogger. She is a former Mormon with a Christian ministry in the American Northwest. She was a Mormon for over thirty-four years. She has a Christian Education media ministry.
A question that has been suggested by the times but not well answered is "Can Christians vote for a Mormon?" All voters need to be informed. I think she gives an excellent prospective on this question with information we need and questions we as voters need to answer for ourselves.


Here is Janis Hutchinson's bio she supplied from her ministry web-site.
"Janis Hutchinson is a former Mormon of thirty-five years. She is an award-winning author and speaker, and was awarded "Writer of the Year" (2008) by the American Christian Writers Association. She has authored six books: The Mormon Missionaries: An inside look at their real message and methods" (Second Edition published Jan. 2012); Out of the Cults and Into the Church: Understanding and encouraging ex-cultists; Misioneros Mormones, and a novel, Ultimate Justice. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with an M.A. in Theology, and holds credentials with the Assemblies of God. She has taught classes at both the college and church level and is a frequent guest on Christian TV and radio talk shows. Her website is www.janishutchinson.com. To sign up for her newsletter, send an email to janishutchinson@frontier.com."



Can Christians Support a Mormon Presidential Candidate?

Mitt Romney's run for the Presidency is a hot debate for evangelical Christians. Reservations are mostly centered on Mormon beliefs. But instead, could there be something else to explore?
Could there be another facet to a Mormon's Presidential candidacy that the majority of Americans have never heard about? Yes. Does the LDS Church want you to know about it? No. And that's the way they'd like to keep it.

But first, let's briefly address what Christians presently wrestle with—Mormon beliefs. Here are a few:

• God is not a triune being, but a resurrected man from a previous world who earned his Godhood.
• God is a polygamist; a necessity in order to produce the number of spirit children who come to earth.
• In heaven a Mormon man will become a God, have many wives, and rule over his own planet.
• There is salvation after death, obtained through Jesus Christ plus the endorsement of Joseph Smith.
• Exaltation (a higher form of salvation) is obtained only through the LDS Church and temple rituals.

Many Christians feel that Mormon theology should be the criteria in determining how they vote. But consider this question: Would any of those beliefs actually affect a president's decisions in the White House? I suggest they would not. How would believing that God is a resurrected man have any bearing on governmental decision-making, war, or foreign policy? None. Nevertheless, a Mormon's beliefs are important to 41% of Evangelicals; although there are others, like Rev. Franklin Graham, who say they can allow for a Mormon's beliefs if he is the most qualified to get our country back on track. The following are thoughts to consider.

What you may not know

The LDS Church has a private agenda that could have tie-ins with a Mormon's candidacy for President. Church leaders, of course, won't acknowledge this agenda, and would be quick to remind one that the LDS Church believes in separation of church and state. But those who understand the deeper mindset of the Mormon vision know better. And yes, the LDS Church does believe in separation of church and state; but what the public doesn't know, is about the church's long-time secretive organization called the "Government of God," a political organization separate from the church, but directed by the Mormon priesthood.

The Mormon Church's behind-the-scene organization

First, a little history is necessary. Joseph Smith set up two organizations:

1. A public one. "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints" (originally, "The Church of Christ"), with its familiar theology.

2. A secret one. An organization called the "Government of God" (also called the Kingdom of God), a political entity separate from the church, but directed by the priesthood and ruled by a Council of Fifty, all of whom were sworn to secrecy about its existence under penalty of death. All Presidents of the church were to also be the President of the Council. Its aim was to gradually turn America into a Mormon Theocracy. Why? In order to have a Mormon-run government already in place at the Second Coming when Jesus acknowledges the LDS Church as the only true church. The Council was to encourage as many Mormons into political office as they could. While the priesthood-run Council was free to involve themselves in political matters, the Church, a separate construct, was not.

Is the Government of God still in existence today?

It would be difficult to prove because of its secrecy. However, Jerald and Sandra Tanner, in their book, Mormonism: Shadow or Reality? said they contacted a Mormon who claimed to have spoken with LDS Apostle, B.H. Roberts (who died in 1933), “in which Roberts claimed that the Council of Fifty was established by revelation and would always be a part of the church.” Historian, Klaus Hansen, in Quest for Empire, stated that since “world government was one of the Council’s primary missions.” modern-day Church leaders are not going to do away with it. (p. 65) Drs. John Heinerman and Anson Shupe, in The Mormon Corporate Empire, state that as late as 1945 the Council of Fifty still operated within Mormonism. (p. 20)

Assuming it is still in existence, here's an example of how double-speak can be used by church leaders to deny any involvement with a presidential candidate. When the First Presidency of the church issues a public statement saying that the LDS Church does not endorse political candidates or attempt to direct or dictate to a governmental leader, they are stating the truth, for they are speaking about the "church." Their statement does not apply to the "Government of God" or its Council of Fifty. Therefore, the Government of God, of which the LDS Church President is president, can be free to direct or dictate to a governmental leader.

However, even if the Council no longer exists, it makes no difference. The principles are still believed by those at the head of the Church. Whoever runs for political office is important to them. The LDS Church's Political Manifesto of 1896 (quoted in Tanner's book, p. 423), states that men wanting to run for office, who hold high church positions (this lets out Huntsman), must first obtain the approval and permission of those who preside over them. Mitt Romney, therefore, had to receive approval from the First Presidency to run for President. He would probably not admit to this. It is also unknown if his approval came from the First Presidency acting for the Church, or acting in their capacity as the Council of Fifty's Government of God. Whichever the case, the candidate would, understandably, be subject to them. This subjection suggests that once a Presidential candidate acquires office, LDS leaders may try to persuade him on issues. Are there any examples of this ever happening before? Yes.

In 1965, President David O. McKay and his two counselors tried to influence eight LDS congressmen and three senators. They asked them to vote to repeal Section 14B of the Taft Hartley Act. One Congressman said he would, but only because he already felt so inclined. Five signed a letter saying they would not. Whether Pres. McKay and his counselors were acting in behalf of the Government of God or the LDS Church is difficult to determine.

Would Romney succumb to influence?

No one can say for sure. With his strong ties to the church, it would seem that regardless of what he states publicly, he would. Why? Because he believes President Thomas S. Monson is God's mouthpiece on earth. What faithful Mormon would ignore that? On the other hand, knowing the high standards that the Mormon Church holds, perhaps any attempted persuasion by leaders would merely consist of pushing ideal American values. But if the Government of God's Council of Fifty still exists, LDS leaders, acting in that capacity, could attempt to use their influence to achieve its political agenda of a theocracy, perhaps promote certain Mormons to positions. There are those who believe this agenda is very real as with the following authors:

Heinerman and Shupe ask: "Will the church be successful in gaining its political objective?" Their answer . . . "Their success [will be] directly related to general public ignorance about their methods and ends." (p. 28)

Conclusion
Whether the Government of God still exist today or not, LDS leaders still retain the church's long-held vision of America becoming a theocracy and would like to see a Mormon majority in political positions. This is not because they are power-hungry in an evil sense, but because they honestly believe that their church is the only one God endorses, and they want to see God's government already in place by the time Jesus ushers in the Millennium.

Christians, faced with the dilemma of supporting a Mormon Presidential candidate, need to consider these questions:

• If Mitt Romney (or any Mormon) becomes President, will he succumb to the private bidding of LDS leaders, or be his own man?

• Would that bidding by leaders merely consist of pushing for ideal American values, or would it have more political ramifications?

• Could a Mormon's election as President and his subsequent appointment of other Mormons to positions possibly have a long range goal of a Mormon take-over?

• Since America was established as a Christian nation, does supporting a Mormon candidate conflict with that?

• Should the theology of a Mormon Presidential candidate be inconsequential so long as he lives a Christian lifestyle and has America's best interest at heart?

• Considering the serious economical and debt crisis of America, would it be permissible to vote for a Mormon because he may have expertise in that area? A few Christian leaders think so.

Electing a president is a heavy responsibility, and no one can tell another how to vote. The only advice one can give is to consider everything, pray to be guided by the Holy Spirit, and then vote how you are led.

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For a more in-depth presentation of this subject, go to www.janishutchinson.com. Click on Newsletter Archives, then "Mormons in Politics."

2 comments:

  1. If it comes down to a choice between Romney and Obama, it is one unbeliever vs another, one with a conservative Mormon belief and the other with a liberal, Marxist Islamic worldview. I'll take the Mormon any day.

    ReplyDelete