What this blog is about...

Every day, often several times a day, a contingent of Mormon-haters initiates discussions on FreeRepublic.com's web site. These intolerant bigots start discussions with the intent of defaming the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. If members of the Church speak up in its defense, they coordinate their actions using "pings" to summon up other anti-Mormons.

Acting together, they form up an online mob that "tars and feathers" Mormonism daily. They use the forum rules to their advantage. As best as we can tell, one of the religion moderators of the forum is among their ranks.

This blog has identified the key players and over 50 anti-Mormons who spread hate. The Society for the Prevention of Anti-Mormonism created this site to monitor and conduct statistical research on the incidents of hate speech and anti-Mormon attacks conducted on the Free Republic forums.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Mormons and "post-election depression"

Back on November 8th, Kathryn Skaggs wrote an article on her blog, "Mormons in Mourning: Post Election Depression."  In the article she expresses the dismay at having the hopes that Romney might have been the fulfillment of several prophetic statements by early Church leaders regarding a time when the elders of Israel (LDS priesthood) would save the Constitution when it should hang by a thread.  Sister Skaggs and other conservatives had their hopes dashed when Romney lost.

The reason I mention this nearly two-month old article is that it has surfaced on Free Republic, posted by anti-Mormon "Greyfoxx39."  It begins with a selectively highlighted copy of the article (which probably violates Ms. Skagg's copyrights if there are any) and then includes this analysis from Greyfoxx39:

"This article illustrates the dirty campaigning that was done by Romney and his sycophants beginning in the 2008 electoral cycle when they were hoping to harm Governor Palin’s reputation to the point she wouldn’t be a viable candidate in the future. All to pave the way for Mitt. And in 2012 these tactics were used against all the other primary candidates in order again, to pave the way for Mitt.
"I don't believe Tagg Romney. I believe that Mitt not only wanted the presidency, but he believed he was foreordained by way of the mormon religion to become the "man on the White Horse". The mormon leaders had already planned ahead for a blitz campaign to convert others including Christians, because there is an attitude of "specialness" and belief that the sect in the future will rule the world fostered by the religion in its members.
"Instead, Mitt Romney has given this country four more disastrous years of Barack Obama."
After this introduction, the anti-Mormon "ping list" gets activated to invite Elsie, svcw, Zakeet, Tennessee Nana, aMorePerfectUnion, Godzilla, fishtank, metmom, and others to the thread.  Once there, the anti-Mormon sharks begin their feeding frenzy.  Nothing new, really.  So why do I mention it.  I want to discuss the perceptions of LDS conservatives on this prophecy vs. the views of LDS liberals.  Yes, there are LDS liberals and moderates.  

There are those of us who separate our politics and our religion.  There are those of us who are libertarians and democrats as well as republicans.  Not all American Mormons are conservative republicans.  Some of us see the GOP as having been co-opted by Wall Street, the military-industrial complex, and corporatists who have linked arms with religious conservatives in an unholy alliance of Mammon and false religion.  

If latter-day saints are going to be true to their principles, we have to accept and teach that an apostasy took place.  The first message to this dispensation, brought to the world by God the Father and Jesus Christ in a personal appearance to the Prophet Joseph Smith was that none of the religions of the world were recognized as his.  They had no authority.  They taught the doctrines of men.  Their professors were corrupt. Their creeds were an abomination.  Unfortunately, that message can't be sugar-coated.  It is the very reason there had to be a restoration.  If we become too desirous for acceptance by mainstream denominations, we undercut our reason to exist at all as a faith.  

Thus, the Republican party is no more righteous or moral than the Democrat party.  The conservative Christians may decry the Democrats over abortion, gay marriage, etc., but their religious tenets are not endorsed by the God of Heaven who appeared to Joseph Smith.  Both sides are utterly "telestial" in their approach.  If the religious right were to exercise power unchecked by liberals, they would rule as ruthlessly as the Taliban did in Afghanistan.  And among their targets would be latter-day saints.  We have felt their heavy hand in places like Missouri and Nauvoo in our past.

Sister Skaggs and her fellow conservatives were sorely mistaken to hitch their hopes to a politician.  They misunderstand the prophecies, having never studied them in detail.  There are various iterations of these in our "folklore" and the confusion results from the doctrines of men being mingled with scripture.  They omit parts of the accounts that don't jibe with their interpretations.  For example, Orson Pratt, an early LDS apostle and associate of Joseph Smith said that, as best as he could remember, Joseph Smith said "if" the Constitution is to be saved, it would be by the elders of Israel.  Brigham Young said that the saints would preserve the principles of the Constitution in Zion.  Nowhere did they say that the United States survives as a political entity.

In fact, we know from the voice of the Lord in Section 89 that he will make a "full end of all nations" ultimately.  Zion, the kingdom of God, will be the last one standing.  All other political systems and nations will collapse, including the United States of America.  Mitt Romney will not save it.  Mormon elders will not save it.  What will happen, according to all the prophecies, is that the freedoms we treasure will be held inviolate in Zion when it is established.  All nations will flow unto it (Isaiah 2:2).  Those who will not take up the sword against their neighbors in the tribulations of the last days will flee to it (Doctrine and Covenants 45:68).  It will be protected by divine power, not by military might or by armed citizens (Doctrine and Covenants 45:67, 70).

Because of the work of secret combinations that have political parties both in the United States and abroad, the current system of nation-states is being collapsed.  The Book of Mormon tells us that these secret conspirators seek to overthrow the freedom of all nations (Ether 8:25).  Through them, Satan intends to establish a false Zion, a global political system that will oppose the true kingdom of God on earth.  This is the "beast" of the book of Revelation.  We know that the Lord will permit it to have dominion for a time, times, and half a time (42 months, 1260 days, ) (See Revelation 12 and 13, Daniel 12).  It will speak against God and his kingdom.  It will "wear out" the saints of the Most High (Daniel 7:25).  

When this kingdom comes to power, Zion will have risen from the collapsed ruins of America.  Think of the story of Joseph who was sold into Egypt by his brethren.  Joseph was given power and authority, symbolized by his coat of many colors.  His revelations told him that his brethren would show honor to him and that he had the right to rule.  In the last days, God has gathered the tribe of Ephraim, Joseph's son through the missionary work since the Restoration.  The descendants of Joseph have been given priesthood authority--the only legitimate authority on earth or in heaven.  

Like Joseph's brethren, who envied him and sought his destruction, there have been those who have sought to destroy the tribe of Joseph who has been doing God's bidding since 1830.  Nevertheless, a famine has been set upon the land.  In Egypt, it was a literal famine.  In our day, it is a famine for hearing the word of God (Amos 8:11).  In the future, it will also be a literal famine because the Lord has revealed it (Doctrine and Covenants 29:16, 43:25, 87:6).

The time is now that those who desire the word of God must come to the people of Joseph to obtain their spiritual nourishment.  The time will come in the future when they will come to us to have physical nourishment as well.  In the midst of tribulation, Mormons will offer safety and refuge to the honest-in-heart who come in their need.  

The wicked among both the churched and unchurched will revile against Zion and fight against it.  Anti-Mormons do so now.  They will continue to do so until their opposition ensures God's judgment upon them when they are fully ripe in their wickedness.  

Mitt Romney, the GOP, the Democrats, and other groups are playing out their parts.  Sister Skaggs should not be disappointed by Mitt's failed candidacy.  It is a win-win for the Church.  The Church benefited to some degree from the enhanced profile during the election.  It weathered some opposition that strengthened us.  Many people ended up with more favorable opinions.  When it comes time for them to come to Zion, they will feel much more positively disposed to seek refuge with the saints.  The other "win" for the Church comes because, without Romney in office, it doesn't have to bear the brunt of criticism that might come from failed policies or various conspiracy theories our enemies might invent.  We got all the benefit and none of the downside.

There is no reason for latter-day saints to be depressed in Mitt's defeat.  Our faith is in Christ.  Hard times will come.  Tribulations will make it seem like we will lose the battle.  The Lord will let us be tried to our utmost, but he will deliver us.  Zion will stand and be a source of deliverance to the righteous from all nations.    It doesn't matter if Barack Obama is president or Mitt Romney.  All of these prophecies will play out according to the Lord's omniscient foreknowledge.  Our duty is to bear witness of Christ and his kingdom, not play politics with those of the telestial world.  Babylon and its political parties isn't going to win in the end.

To the anti-Mormons on Free Republic: our foes will mock, but they will ultimately mourn.  We will enjoy all the promised blessings if we remain faithful and build Zion with our time, means, service, and prayers.  As the Lord has told us, "lift up your heads and be of good cheer."  

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Update #1 on 12/30/2012

It appears that a new thread has emerged that highlights this article on FR.  Here's the thread:

http://freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2973433/posts

Nice to know that Grayfoxx39 is one of our regular readers!  Now if he'd just stop illegally copying entire articles in violation of copyright laws!  Fair use includes copying relevant parts of articles, not copying them in their entirety and posting them on FR.  Jimbo Robinson has gotten in to legal trouble in the past for not enforcing copyright law among his minions.
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Update #2 on 12/30/2012

There's a Freeper sticking up for us on this thread.  (Go boy!)  The antis have taken the argument down this path:  Mormons think they're superior to everyone--that's why they hate us.

This goes to an interesting place.  Theologically, the big difference between evangelicals (like most of the antis on Free Republic claim to be) and Mormons is an argument over faith and works.  This actually goes back thousands of years long before Mormons came along.  Christians burned one another over the stake regarding it.  Martin Luther, the chief inventor of the "by grace alone" camp interpreted Paul's works in a way that balanced the focus on God's grace and the evidence of faith demonstrated by one's works.  Unfortunately, many modern evangelicals have gone so far to upset that balance that they would never lift a finger to do a good work lest they be accused of relying on their works instead of faith.  It's not a reasonable argument at all.

Mormons' view is almost identical to Martin Luther's.  We believe that we are all sinners in need of Christ's grace.  We believe that salvation is not possible without it.  We also believe that, without good works, faith is dead being alone, as the Epistle of James in the New Testament says.  We balance the two instead of throwing out all mention of good works.

So here's the essence of tonight's fight.  When the antis say we're superior, they are showing a sense of insecurity at the prospect that their works are not good.  In the case of anti-Mormons, that's for certain.  Inciting hate against another religion is not of God.  So when Mormons try to actually live the gospel and keep the commandments of God, expecting that we will be judged according to our works, it makes them feel inferior.  Even when we are imperfect sinners, at least we are trying.  We don't abandon the effort to strive to do good, even when others accuse us of relying on works.

To my Freeper "friends," your works speak for themselves. We'll leave it in God's hands to judge our works.