Are Mormons Christians? Holy CRAP I'm tired of this one.
Does it really matter what the world calls us? Does the title matter? I don't mean to make this a blog entry consisting entirely of questions - none of which are hypothetical - but seriously now. General Conference talks have been based on this. We're all very concerned about the rest of the world accepting us into the realm of Christendom.
Let me ask you something: Is the title of Christian requisite for admission into God's Kingdom? I get that, without this understanding, conversion for those who belong to other Christian denominations might prove rather difficult. But it's hardly central to salvation to have the title.
The fundamental belief of all Christian people is that Christ is our savior. To us, it's rather obvious.
To others, not so much.
But does it matter what others think? If the Gospel is true and we know what we teach and believe in, what does it matter?
I worry this is too much a PR move. We've a long, glorious history of ostracism, persecution, and other such lovely things. People like to spit that we believe in a "different" Christ - and we laugh. A different Christ? How many could there possibly be?
Other churches see us as cultish. Our doctrines are not only strange to many but border on blasphemous (if not entirely blasphemous). This hurts our image. We want common ground to help our image so we can be of better good in the world. I understand that.
What I don't understand is how much energy we've spent on the subject. Please like us. We believe in Christ, too. Look! It's in the name of our church (and while we're on the subject, just where is Christ's name in your church?). We're taking the defensive role where there's really no reason for it. Our penecostal or evangelical (or even Catholic) friends will not be the ones to let us through the gates of heaven. Why we act like they will be is beyond me.
Why expend so much energy in trying to convince others otherwise? Yes there's plenty misinformation out there - people will believe anything negative about us, but this whole idea of jumping up and down with the proclamation that we are Christian too (RU Christian 2?) seems a little needless and silly.
Face it. We are not part of the mainstream Christian group. We don't believe in the Trinity, we believe God has a body, we believe Christ came to America, that baptism is essential and we put more emphasis on works than do other Christian churches (this is especially offensive to them, though it is largely misunderstood). Hell, there is unofficial speculation that Christ likely married. These ideas are seen as heretical and are thus rejected by mainstream Christians, and that is why they don't believe us to be Christian.
I just can't get rid of the image of a bunch of kids out in the playground, some calling one child "stupid" or a "baby." Does the name calling make it so? No. If we are secure in our own standing with God and his Son, than all we have to do is smile and say "Well, go ahead and think that. I know who I am and who I worship" and walk away.
So let's get over it. Let's preach about more important things. Let's worry less about acceptance and more about our personal relationship with Christ, shall we?
(bytheby, I may not post much if at all this weekend as I won't be home very much. I hope everyone has a good one!)
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