Mormon Critics-Fiction, Facts and Opinion
The modern technology allows for mass dissemination of opinions and information, both true and false. Opinion narratives drive much discussion in politics, religion, science and any number of subjects. The reader or listener must evaluate and think critically about what they hear and see.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints claims and testifies that it is the only true and living church on the earth and that Jesus Christ stands at the head of it. The priesthood order and authority that administers the covenants of the gospel of Jesus Christ and salvation is found it it.
The Savior established a church when he was on the earth. No other religion organization claims to be his true church. If his church was on the earth it wouldn't it declare such to the world?
Some critically minded people just can't seem to accept the fact that even the Lord's church is full of imperfect people as leaders and members or that events and practices they don't agree with have occurred in its history. Even so by what authority do they judge? Only with their opinions and false judgements.
Mainstream Christian churches often start when person feels the desire to start a congregation. They may disagree with another or current pastor or for occupational reasons seek to proclaim their version of biblical Christianity. They may even call it an anointing to give it a real spiritual spin. They simply meld into another of the hundreds of thousands of Christian factions.
To assume that thousands of different churches can somehow be authorized to teach differing opinions because they can open a Bible and read it certainly seems to be a contradiction of truth.
The essence of the arguments against the Mormon church and its leaders comes down to one of the two scenarios mentioned at the beginning.
Either the critics are using deceptive tactics to portray their story to misinform people that Joseph Smith managed to establish a 2000 year ruse, one that he was willing to die for, or he was in fact a prophet of God bearing testimony of truth. How do you recognize a true prophet? You study the fruits of his ministry.
The many voices of internet dissention and discussion against the LDS church are uninformed individuals parroting information that was debunked long ago. They fail to study the matters and persist in rationalizing their own lack of spiritual progress by tearing down the church. The sad thing is they have nothing to offer in the least.
They use fallacies in defining their narrative of Joseph's youth. They tell of things that were normal and cultural in the 1820's that would seem strange if you did them in our day and age. It is like comparing the practice of bleeding sick patients in early medical practices to how disease is cured today.
The critical narratives depend on a listener's lack of knowledge and lack of desire or opportunity to get all of the facts and to know what the actual circumstances were. If the false narrative comes from someone they trust, like a pastor or minister then there is a tendency to dismiss the need for more information. These narratives have been repeated over and over in churches around the world, especially in the United States.
Such has been the approach of the handful of critics that continue to emerge to oppose the Church since it began some two hundred years ago. They have provided their dialogues of misinformation to thousands of of orthodox Christian churches and pastors and leaders disseminate it to their congregations in one form or another. They like to emphasise that Mormonism is a non-christian cult.
The process is readily identifiable for the purpose of spreading false information. Such was the case with me after I joined the church in 1973. I was taken to a church where a lecture was being given to explain why the Mormon Church was the fabrication of a "con artist". Their methods and actions of teaching and disseminating are the real work of con artists. Here is what they suppose.
Because the growth and success of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has occurred against great odds, they want people to believe that it is actually the result of a cleverly crafted scheme.
Their narrative, in attempting to demonstrate a corrupt Joseph Smith actually shows the prophetic nature of what he accomplished. Today the church is a worldwide organization with a presence in almost every community in North and South America, Europe, Africa and Asia, and still expanding to parts of the world where Christianity can be taught.
The critics insist that as a 14 year old boy Joseph Smith decided one day to make up a story, one that would become a con for centuries to come. He said God and Christ visited him as an answer to prayer while seeking knowledge about religious truth.
Could such a story be the subject for a con that would be carried out over two centuries? As a boy prophet in 1820, in the United States he saw God and was visited by resurrected apostles and prophets that laid their hands on his head to ordain and give him authority. No other church leader has made such claims of authority.