Monday, April 2, 2007

DVD Outreach a "Hate Crime"?

I have revised this post as of 4/3/07 .....there has been some comments from LDS authorities and media sensationalists crying foul and worse yet using terms like "hate crime" "sneak attack" "violation of rights" against the Christians who distributed the DVD. I am concerned that it will be none too soon when we will not be able to tell Mormons the truth of the Gospel without it being called a "Hate Crime". There are many debates as to how to approach Mormons. There seems to be two sides to this debate more traditional Biblical way and the culturally sensitive pragmatists/relationalist. The people who take the relational approach to witnessing to Mormons have not stood against the Mormon Church. Even during this time we have not seen anything but an opposition to the DVD. Organizations like Standing Together or John Morehead's many projects. In fact Morehead went so far as to oppose the DVD outreach publicly and let the information leak out about it in the name of "justice". How is that for divisiveness. If John and the other relationalist are so convinced to being relational with Mormons, why do they not apply that with other Christians. Hmmm looks like...... a double standard. I think it will be sad for all of us when no one will be allowed to even have a truth conversation with Mormon. Here is a link to an article in response to Morehead here and then another here. In addition here is a link to a blog with a lot of recent debate over this (they have been temporarily hidden), as well as a conversation with some "relational only" Christians. Why do I associate the issue of this outreach and the relationalists? Well because the relationalist are fueling the fire for the LDS Church, to give them the benefit of the doubt they may not knowingly be doing that. See the LDS response to the DVD used terms like "dialogue" and "friendship". These terms are used by relationalist to support the conversations with the LDS Church. The amazing part about all this is that if this continues where issues of Homosexuality has in places like Canada it has all the makings for some scary legislation here in Utah. How will we be culturally sensitive then when we will be silenced by law for our faith? I am pleading with anyone who is a "Christian" to step up now and stop supporting the LDS Churches move into the Christian Category and realize that the term Anti-Mormon is thrown around far to often and unchecked. This is about "truth" and it is time to start contending for the faith.


Lyricsdad said...

I cannot believe what I read in those pages. I have long known that there are "Christians" who show a complete lack of understanding between a saving relationship with Jesus Christ and the cultish misuse of His Name but these pages blew me away.

I was especially amazed and appalled at this quote by Greg Johnson,

"There is a lot of room for us to build on our compromise of scriptures."

and feel that the Church needs to wake up and see what is happening. This Laodician age we live in is ripe for judgment. They sing praises to the God of the Bible on Sunday and then spend the week doing nothing that He asks them and furthermore, they change Him into an idol that they feel most comfortable with.

What part of not having fellowship with darkness is so hard to understand? Reaching out in love and respect is such a far cry from the fluffy love fest we see happening in the church today.

I cringe to think of the day when this is all reckoned.

Andy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andy said...

Leonard thank you for your comments. Greg did refute this comment however the BYU media still has it on tape and they are sticking with it. So it wasn't that he was misquoted, I will give him the benefit of the doubt and say he mispoke. At what point though will his alignment with the LDS Church conflict with the basis of the Christian Belief system?
Here is the full story

Lyricsdad said...

Well, I am at least glad he did not mean it, but I still must question where he is going. I am so very concerned, especially coming out of that religion, that any "Christian" would pander and fluff our message. The unfortunate thing is that people go to hell being very religious and if those of us who have been given the message of God do not give it to them or worse yet change it to suit their sensibilities, then we are guilty of their souls.

The absolute last thing we need in this town is a group to come in and further muddy the waters.

The mormon church is trying it's best to become seen as part of the very Body of Believers it has historically condemned (thank you for a fantastic follow up to this section) and is doing a pretty good job. Many evangelicals have no idea the real problems with mormonism and readily accept them as brothers and sisters of the faith simply because they proclaim to be followers of Jesus Christ. If they would read the Bibles they have in their houses they would see that this was foretold by our Lord Himself, saying that many would come in His Name who were in fact not.

John W. Morehead said...

Heart for the Lost, thanks for stopping by my blog and posting a question on relationality as it relates to Mormons and evangelicals. You will find my response there.

In terms of your post two responsive comments come to mind. First, as I mention on my blog in response to your query, it is a mistake to refer to my methods and those in our growing international network as merely "relational" and us as "relationists." We are applying the biblical texts that touch on the missio dei as well as the insights of the history of Christian missions and missiology to the new religious movements in the Western world. Thus, our approach is properly labeled a cross-cultural missions model. This includes many elements, including relationality, contextualization, and apologetics, but it is a mistake to boil it down to relationships vs. confrontational approaches.

Second, as to my critique of the DVD on Mormonism, I shared my concerns with Chip Thompson privately and allowed feedback. Then, after prayer and thought, and running the scenario by a noted Christian philosopher and ethicist who has written on new religions, I determined that there was no ethical or biblical obligation to keep the project secret. I had a right and obligation to share my views on what I see as a poor product that will actually hamper relationships with LDS. It's a pity that those involved with an supportive of this project take this personally and have gotten nasty in the process.

For better familiarity with the cross-cultural missions approach which might permit more accurate posts on the topic I'd recommend our book Encountering New Religious Movements (Kregel Academic, 2004) and the Lausanne issue group paper we wrote on this that can be downloaded for free at

L. Curtis said...

Mr. Morehead,

You say it was your obligation to speak of this dvd and that you had no Biblical mandate to remain secret. Well, the first is merely opinion and while the second may be so, it would seem that your first allegiance would be to the Body you claim to be part of, not to the mormons.

Wether you agree with the approach or not, who are you to hamper the project and go against the people who invested their time and energy in reaching out to the mormons?

As for the ethical nature, I believe you are completely wrong. You put yourself at odds with your Brothers and Sisters and seem to have no problem with that, as long as comraderie is secure with the mormons.

I wonder when groups such as yours will stop trying to hug people out of hell and actually speak the truth, regardless if people like it or not.

As for reading the book, I will respectfully decline. I have seen the fruit and don't need to read the instructions for planting such.

Fortunately, your efforts as well as those in your camp did little to damper the effect that this dvd had and the response has been great. Some will be angry, some will not even care, but still others will have the hard questions that some seem so timid to answer, answered.

Andy said...

Thank you John for stopping by here as well.
Fair enough I will correct this in future conversations. I have seen the Biblical Texts you apply and would like a list of them and your interpretation of them.
How does exposing LDS heresy hamper the relationship between Christians and LDS. In your cross-cultural mission mindset we are supposed to use methods that relate with the culture. The Mormon culture has 200 years of being Anti-Christian in their words and methods see my latest post. Aren’t we then being the most culturally sensitive by exposing their false doctrines, in fact I have quotes from two Mormon Presidents who encourage people to show them their proofs.

Here is a quote
Orson Pratt: (on the Book of Mormon) this book must be either true or false, if
false it is one of the most cunning wicked bold deep-laied impositions ever pawned
upon the world. Calculated to deceive and ruin millions who will really receive it
as the word of God... If after a rigid examination it be found an imposition it should
be extensively published to the world as such the evidences and arguments upon
which the impostor was detected should be clearly and logically stated. ..
(the Divine authority of the book of Mormon)”

Here are two more

Joseph Fielding Smith: Mormonism, as it is called, must stand
or fall on the story of Joseph Smith. He was either a prophet of
God, divinely called, properly appointed and commissioned, or he
was one of the biggest frauds this world has ever seen. There is no
middle ground. “If Joseph Smith was a deceiver, who willfully
attempted to mislead the people, then he should be exposed; his
claims should be refuted, and his doctrines shown to be false,...”
(Doctrines of Salvation, vol.1, pp. 188-189)

Gordon B Hinkley: (on Joseph Smith’s 1st vision) Our whole
strength rests on the validity of that vision. It either occurred or
it did not occur. If it did not, then this work is a fraud. (President
Gordon B. Hinkley, “The Marvelous Foundation of Our Faith,”
Ensign, Nov. 2002, 80.)

Please help me to understand how the DVD distribution follows what the Mormon ask us to do to present to them. Yet you respond in "justice" for them to stop that which they have requested? That is certainly outside of any mission mindset that I have heard of.

Nate said...

I've been reading through some of the drama stirred up by this DVD and I'm fascinated by this discussion regarding the "relational" vs "confrontational" approach.

Pardon me for my ignorance of many of these terms prior to today, but it seems contradictory that Mr. Morehead is being lambasted for his critique of the DVD and its method of distribution. I've read more than a few posts today calling for him to be more "relational" towards those who produced and support the DVD while also preaching the merits of being "confrontational".

If you'd like the "relationists" to take a more "confrontational" approach, I'd suggest you not protest so much when that "confrontational" approach is directed at you.

Andy said...

Thank you Nate for your comment however, in being confrontational with the truth at worst we are being consistent. From the relational standpoint, and Christianity, he should be consistent within his methodology especially with other Christians. Where do you stand Nate?

Weston Krogstadt said...

Listen, you have to compare it to other forms of hate crimes. If an organization put a DVD together which described how, in their opinion, jews were the root of all evil in the world and how the jews were to blame for everything, and mailed thousands of these DVDs to jewish families families all over the country, would that be a hate crime? If you think it would, in fact, be a hate crime, then someone mailing DVDs to mormons telling mormons their opinion is also a hate crime. It's that simple, we can't have a double standard here.

Andy said...

By your own definition Nephi Mormon then Joseph Smith was the Ultimate in Hate Crimes saying that all religions were an abomination. Or Brigham Young quoted as saying "Christians are the whore...."

The DVD does not do any of the things you mentioned, it merely shows the falsehood of Mormonism. Take it or leave it, it is your soul that is at stake.