On Monday night April 9, 2012 Brit Hume stated during an interview on Fox News that being critical of someone’s religion only helps the person being criticized and does not speak well for the one who is being critical.
It was clear that Hume was again attempting to smooth over another area of contention among the writers, journalists and pundits that have of late noted that Mitt Romney is a Mormon and that is a religion that since its inception is held to be a ‘pseudo Christian religion,’ not part of mainstream Christianity.
Brit has always been a ‘healer of the breach’ in the business of TV journalism and while he is at least consistent, the attempt to label all criticism of someone’s religion as ‘bigotry’ falls far short of the truth and if not more thoroughly discerned could also become very damaging to those less versed in theological intricacies.
If a political or personally vindictive motive is attached to a criticism then it may be found to be bigoted. If criticism is driven by a search for truth and a purely didactic pursuit of sound theological evidence, it must never be dismissed as bigotry.
Former Governor Mitt Romney at a townhall in Sun Lakes, Arizona. Photo: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0 Generic License
As an exemplar we need only to apply this to the various views we all hold about politics. Any kind of refutation of liberalism and the dangers it poses to the country could be called bigotry. Every conservative could be labeled a bigot and all discourse and argument would cease overnight. This is a case of a definition of higher criticism that is too broad and itself becomes bigotry. Telling theological truths is no different than demanding truth in political discourse, anything less is hypocritical at best.
Let’s start with a disclaimer of sorts about Mitt’s Mormonism. If his connection to the church is as an adherent, attendee or congregant, even his generosity toward the Mormon Church and some work done for the Mormons in his past, he hardly qualifies as a fire and brimstone preacher for the Mormons. His views and practices stay hidden in the background and don’t seem to bleed into his political message. Perhaps those who think his Mormon views will little affect his policies are right, but even that doesn’t make erroneous doctrine and theology right.
Hundreds of questions about the origins of Mormonism bother many people and some of the doctrines that twist the Divinity of Christ and could promote the view that abortion is OK because a person is not endowed with a God given spirit until birth. This is not scriptural and defies the clearest teachings of the Bible. This worries pro-lifers and not without good reason.
Before going on it must be noted that if questioning Mormonism is bigotry then questioning biblical Christianity would be as well. With that said, it is no secret that the founder of the Mormon religion, Joseph Smith said God had told him specifically that all the Christian churches were wrong in total. Is that bigotry?
What we have here is a case for rejecting extra-biblical revelation. That is why many of today’s historic denominations will not allow the ministry of prophets and interpreters to continue in their respective churches. Now only Apostolic, Pentecostal and non-denominational churches allow for these kinds of ministries, but not without good reason.
This coming from yours truly, having had a clear calling to the prophetic ministry may seem hard to understand, but here is the crux of the matter for me or any others who have this calling. Nothing God gives us personally can refute, deny or conflict with the Bible and if it does it must be rejected out of hand. In the case of Joseph Smith the exact opposite is what actually happened. His revelation all but supplanted the prior revelation and in part does until this day in polity and practice among the Mormons.
All extra-biblical materials are rejected as equal to scripture. Mary Baker’s ‘Science and Health’ the book of Mormon, New World Translation of the Jehovah Witnesses and all the so called lost or missing books of the New and Old Testament are avoided by Christianity. Even the spurious books of the ‘Apocrypha’ are rejected by biblically based Christian theology. The Apocryphal books were booted because the language, syntax, historical perspectives and the lack of consistency with the rest of scriptures was not to be overlooked.
The exclusivity created by rejecting extra-biblical material is clearly created by God and not the church. Christ made it clear that his words and those of his Apostles were not to be tampered with or added to in an attempt to twist their plainest meaning. Any attempt to do so will be met with severe consequences. (Rev 22: 18)
I was unafraid to tell people that I saw a breach of the levee in New Orleans one year before Katrina and that I have also been warned of a time of severe ‘poverty and scarcity’ ahead for America, but I will not ever attempt to change the clearest meanings of scriptures as they have been given. I will not use such revelations to begin a new religion, destroy the established religions or draw a circle of adherents to myself. In fact other than my articles I remain generally obscure in the scheme of things and I would not have it any other way.
My name is better left unheralded for the most obvious reasons and they too are quite scriptural. Speaking of Jesus name and finished work as the only path to salvation the Apostle Peter said, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4: 12) It is because of this that I can concur with those who say –“If you meet me and forget me, you have lost nothing. But if you meet Christ and forget him, you have lost everything.”
If examined carefully Mormonism and virtually all religions of the world with the exception of biblically based Christianity fail because of something known as the philosophy of religion. That is until the time God chose to enter the history of man and personally reveal himself in what is called “the fullness of time” (Gal 4: 4) Prior to that and unfortunately even since then man has been content to create religions, idolatries and other means by which to get to God or placate him with various man made doctrines, liturgies, ceremonies, sacrifices and other religious practices.
God chose to halt all our attempts to see him or discern by human means exactly who he is and what he wants. This is where the “incarnation” comes in to change history forever. Christ being God in the flesh came and by example and his words once and for all settled the question. God has revealed himself and our meager attempts have now ceased. All ancient idolatries and any new religions are man’s refusal to accept the revelation that God has given of himself. In the common vernacular this is like substituting a soap box buggy for a fully loaded top of the line Lincoln Town Car. God has given us his best, but he doesn’t force us to take the ride.
Bringing the subject matter back to the front, it should be noted that questioning the doctrine and origins of the Mormons is not a new idea and can hardly be thought of as something generated only because one Mormon is now running for the office of president. From its inception and onward the Mormon faith and message has been under scrutiny and it has never fared well when examined under the light of scripture and sound doctrine. Sorry Brit, your kind attempt to smooth things out has met with a historical precedent that says: it just isn’t so!
http://www.americanprophet.org has since 2005 featured the articles of columnist Rev Michael Bresciani along with news and reviews that have earned this site the title of The Website for Insight. Millions have read his timely reports and articles in online journals and print publications across the nation and the globe.