Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Are Mormons Christians?

Are Mormons Christians? That’s a subject that comes up quite often over at the RFM board. Some people say no, some yes.

But are they? I like to use analogies. So let’s try this one.

You feel the need to help fight against crime. It is something that has concerned you for years, and whilst you are figuring out what to do, there is a knock at the door. “Hello. We are in your neighbourhood promoting crime fighting. Are you interested in becoming a crime fighter?” says the young man on your doorstep.

Wow. What a coincidence! You invite him in. He tells you he is from a body called National Crime Fighters. He explains that National Crime Fighters is the only body for civilians who want to become crime fighter.

You decide you will join. After all you want the opportunity to help fight crime and this organisation called National Crime Fighters seems perfect.

You sign up. You get a cardboard badge to wear and some leaflets that have titles such as: “Crime. We are against it”. It is your job to promote the National Crime Fighters by handing the leaflets out at country shows, craft fairs, on the street, etc. You attend meetings every week with other National Crime Fighters volunteers and hear talks on “Crime. We do not like it,” and so forth.

You begin to have doubts. After all, you wanted to help fight crime. But with the National Crime Fighters all you ever do is hand out useless leaflets and attending boring meetings.

Eventually, while you are out you come across a smartly dressed man. He is wearing a very shiny metal badge with the words International Crime Fighters on it. You approach him and ask him about his organisation.

He tells you that it is an organisation dedicated to fighting crime. They provide help to the victims of crime, install free burglar alarms in people’s homes, and act as the eyes and ears of the law enforcement agencies around the world.

So. You were lied to. National Crime Fighters was NOT the only organisation you could have joined. So why did they lie to you? And how come you only got a crappy, flimsy badge and to attend boring meetings whilst the members of International Crime Fighters got to help prevent and help crime.

But there is worse. The next day you see newspaper headlines that reveal that the National Crime Fighters organisation was set up by a convicted fraudster and that the National Crime Fighters was nothing but a front to help him defraud people.

You then join International Crime Fighters and help fight and prevent crime.

Question. When you were a genuine crime fighter whilst you were with the National Crime Fighters or not?


Tom said...

Your analogy is close, but flawed. Your premise is "are Mormons Christians" yet you split your representative subject (Christ) into two separate entities; National vs. International Crime Fighters. The true analogy would be that both the visitor to your door and the person you bumped into on the street, claim to represent the SAME organization. (Christ)

Could you take it from there and rephrase you analogy?


Arizona Expositor said...

That cleared up the issue.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

It's hard to become a real crimefighter when all they have in their meetings is lesson after lesson on HOW TO BE THE PERFECT CRIMEFIGHTER and all you can hear inside your own head is how much you don't measure up to the standard they set in their lessons.

Matt said...

Thanks, Tom.

I chose the idea of the split carefully. But thanks for your comment.

Simeon's Peep Stone said...

I thought this worked well as an analogy. The individuals in the story do not need to claim to represent the same organization. In this analogy, Crime = Jesus, Just like churchs claim to represent Jesus's interests, these crime fighting organizations claim to represent fighting crime. One actually does it while the other just talks about it.

One thought I had about this when I read it the other day was that most Christian Church's are just like Mormons. They talk a lot about it, but don't practice it very well. So, it's hard to define what a Christian is. Is a Christian just someone that believes in Christ or someone that does as Christ did.

The irony is that the LDS church is really the only church out there that teaches works. Every other Christian church just teaches that you have to accept Christ and have faith.

I vote to just screw it all and go drinking.