It was bad enough that Glenn Beck, who Martin Luther King Jr. would not be supportive of, decided to sully the memory of the great Civil Rights leader's famous "I Have a Dream Speech." It was bad enough that someone who feeds off of people's fears and hatred can draw over 300,000 people in modern day America. As an American, it was a dark day in WashingtonDC yesterday but as a Christian, it was even worse.
Enough people will weigh in from the perspective of America on the rally yesterday. I am responding as a Christian. During the myriad of carefully crafted quotes designed to inspire and sound self-righteous, Beck let this whopper slip through:
"people aren't recognizing [Obama's] version of Christianity."
Excuse me? Now, I will not defend the Christian fruit of the President. It is lacking just as much as the previous occupant of the White House. I am not naive enough to think that the politics of man will not corrupt the best of Christian intentions. But exactly who is Glenn Beck to be critical of someone else's Christianity? Beck throws the name of Christ around enough but never truly discusses the fact that he is actually a Mormon.
Well Mormon's are Christians? Right? Wrong. Their belief structure is fundamentally different than any mainstream version of Christianity. Mormonism starts with the belief that Joseph Smith was a divine Prophet of God who walked the earth over 1800 years after Christ. He wrote the Book of Mormon, which is considered divine. The Bible specifically speaks against this:
"Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar. Proverbs 30: 5-6 (NIV)
There are several other verses as well, including one that is far more direct and to the point:
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel-- which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned! Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ. I want you to know, brothers, that the gospel I preached is not something that man made up. I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ. Galatians 1: 6-12 (NIV)
There are many other differences between Mormonism and actual Christianity. We could discuss the allowance of polygamy; Joseph Smith himself had 33 wives, the youngest being 14 years old. We could discuss the problems they have with the deity of Jesus Christ, proxy baptism for the dead, or even the possibility of man to achieve God-status. Don't believe me; here are the words of Smith himself:
"God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man"I say, if you were to see him today, you would see him like a man in form"like ourselves in all the person, image, and very form as a man" He was once a man like us; yea, that God himself, the Father of us all, dwelt on earth." History of the Church vol.6 p.305.
"In the beginning, the head of Gods called a council of the Gods; and they came together and concocted a plan to create the world and people it". In all congregations when I have preached on the subject of the Deity, it has been the plurality of Gods." History of the Church vol.6 p.308.374
"Here then is eternal life" to know the only wise and true God; and you have got to learn how to be Gods yourselves, and to be kings and priests to God, the same as all gods have done before you" To inherit the same power, the same glory and the same exaltation, until you arrive at the station of God." History of the Church vol.6 p.306.
"I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I." History of the Church vol.6 p.408,409.
Now, this is not an attempt to pick a fight. I have no problem with Mormons believing what they want to believe in a country like America with religious freedom. Likewise, I have no objection to those who choose to not believe at all. God knows that many Christian leaders have given many reasons to be unsure of Christianity. The truth is that people do not need Christianity they need Christ. It just becomes so tiring to watch people who are clearly not Christians, trying to co-opt the Christian crowd for political motivations and using Christ to do so.
Glenn Beck does not represent the cause of Christ. He makes his living off of the misery of others while casually throwing around the name of Jesus. But he rarely ever mentions that the God he refers to is not the God of Christianity. Sorry Glenn the problem is not that we can't recognize Obama's Christianity but that we can recognize yours.