Thursday, May 17, 2007

Chatting with the Mormons

Our neighborhood seems to be the bulls eye of Mormon missionary work. We seem to be visited every couple of months. Usually I just give them a hard time about the Trinity and Christology and dismiss them.

But while it may make me feel better (and keeps our conversation short), I don't think it helps point the Mormon missionaries to the truth very well. So this most recent time I took a different tact, I wanted to keep focused on the Gospel. So I talked about the Gospel, and asked them what they had to add to it. They said that they believed every thing I said. Of course, it seems to me that the Mormons' missionary tact is to minimize heterodox exposure on first contact, then only later start to unpack the "agreed upon" words with heterodox definitions. (For example, they said that they agreed with my explanation of the Gospel, but that the reason we need the book of Mormon and more recent Mormon "prophecies," they said, is to understand the "full" Gospel.) So that will probably force us back to questions of Christology and the Trinity anyway.

In any event, since we get visited so often, I figure I should bite the bullet and read the book of Mormon. When I told the missionaries that, if they gave me a copy, I'd read it from start to finish, one of them said, "The whole thing?!"

These couple of lads said that they'd check back to see if I had any questions. I suspect that I'll have one or two. Still, I'm going to try to keep us focused on Christ and his work, and I want to take my time with them, rather than just trying to get them out of my hair as quickly as possible. (We already had an hour-long discussion when they dropped off a copy of the Book of Mormon for me.)

Who knows, maybe it will prove to be a huge waste of time. But from now on, I want every Mormon missionary who comes to my door to hear the Gospel presented in a winsome fashion, and hear a knowledgeable (and winsome) discussion of Mormon heterodoxy in light of Christ's truth. That being said, I'm reading the Book of Mormon as the missionaries asked me to -- praying that God would reveal to me whether what I read is a true revelation of and from him. I do not want there to be any stumbling block about whether I followed the proper process when I tell the missionaries whether the Spirit confirmed the truth of the Book of Mormon to me.

3 Comments:

Blogger The Presbyteer said...

Those poooooor Mormon missionaries.

Wish I could listen in. (put one of those digital recorders by the front door, pick it up and turn it on when they call ...)

May 17, 2007 10:40 AM  
Blogger Jim said...

If you're interested, I'll probably post a bit on TBM as I work through it. Though I don't want to neglect my exisiting book list.

May 18, 2007 2:02 PM  
Blogger Citizen said...

They should respect that. I've read the whole thing (I carpooled with three Mormons for a couple years). I once wrote a tract that was essentially the Apostle's Creed using BOM verses. You'll find that it is mainly Protestant theology from the 19th century with some odd additions. None of the really weird stuff is in there, though it is modalistic. I intend to someday write a Christian commentary on the BOM.

Joel
http://livingtext.wordpress.com/

May 21, 2007 8:11 PM  

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