Daily Thought - "billy Graham, Mormonism, And Situational Ethics"

Discussion in 'Thoughts for Today' started by anthony wade, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful. And now the prize awaits me—the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return. And the prize is not just for me but for all who eagerly look forward to his appearing. - 2Timothy 4: 7-8 (NLT)

    Christianity suffered another sad moment this week. Another stain of compromise from one of the forerunners of the modern faith; Billy Graham. As believers, we are held to a higher standard; a higher calling. The world practices situational ethics but we should never be caught doing so. Situational ethics says that you can compromise what you believe based upon the situation at hand. That the situation is larger than our ethics. It appears that is what happened this week as the website for the iconic preacher removed Mormonism from its list of cults. With less than three weeks to go in the Presidential race, the timing is beyond transparent considering the faith of Republican candidate Mitt Romney.

    Please realize this is not an endorsement of either candidate - it is an examination of what we stand for as Bible believing Christians. Many Christians with Republican Party leanings can give plenty of Biblical reasons for not voting for the current President, yet they seemingly turn their collective heads when it comes to something as fundamental as the actual faith of their chosen political savior. Mr. Romney is not a casual Mormon either. He is a direct descendant of one of the 12 founding apostles of that faith and tithes 19% of his massive wealth to the church of latter day saints. This is not a political issue, it is a Biblical one:

    I say this because many deceivers have gone out into the world. They deny that Jesus Christ came in a real body. Such a person is a deceiver and an antichrist. Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked so hard to achieve. Be diligent so that you receive your full reward. Anyone who wanders away from this teaching has no relationship with God. But anyone who remains in the teaching of Christ has a relationship with both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to your meeting and does not teach the truth about Christ, don’t invite that person into your home or give any kind of encouragement. Anyone who encourages such people becomes a partner in their evil work. - 2John 1: 7-11 (NLT)

    Does this sound like a casual matter of doctrine beloved? Anyone who wanders from the teachings of Christ has no relationship with God! Do not encourage anyone who does not teach the truth about Jesus Christ, lest we become a partner in their evil work. Mormonism was founded in the 1800's by Joseph Smith, a resident of upstate New York. He claimed to have been visited by God who led him to discover golden tablets buried in the woods behind his house. Tablets no one else has ever seen, that only Smith could translate. The claim continues by saying these translations were in fact "another testament of Jesus Christ." This would become the Book of Mormon and later he would add The Pearl of Great Price. Not only are these added to holy Scripture but they are elevated above the Holy Bible. In order for this to be true, God would have to contradict Himself:

    And I solemnly declare to everyone who hears the words of prophecy written in this book: If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. And if anyone removes any of the words from this book of prophecy, God will remove that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book. He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, "Yes, I am coming soon!" - Revelation 22: 18-20 (NLT)

    I do not want to get into all of the problems within Mormonism compared to what Christians believe but realize that they simply do not believe what Christians believe. And the differences are stark, not subtle. They are as stark as the differences between Christians and Muslims or Scientologists. In this world of ever increasing homogenization with the world we need to take a stand on what we believe. I do not mean a political stand where we try to beat popular culture upside the head with our vision of morality but rather where we guard internally what it is that we believe. The Graham website correctly states that cults are any group that teaches doctrines or beliefs that deviate from the biblical message of the Christian faith. The problem is that the rationale as explained by Graham's association was explained to CNN as follows: "Our primary focus at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has always been promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We removed the information from the website because we do not wish to participate in a theological debate about something that has become politicized during this campaign."

    Say what? This has to be one of the more twisted explanations you can find for NOT promoting the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The very act of removing the cult from the cult list is by definition, politicizing the Mormon faith and a textbook definition of situational ethics. Graham's association should be more concerned about the Gospel than about how it might be perceived during a presidential race. Based upon our beliefs there are 40 million people deceived into the false beliefs of the Mormon faith. It is a faith based upon continuous works and not on the grace of God. Do the eternal souls of these 40 million people cease to exist because it is a presidential season? Because one of them seeks the highest office in our country? Of course not.

    I cannot speak for who made this decision for the Graham Association. Given his advanced age, perhaps it was not him directly. What I do know is that our key verses remind us that how we finish is just as important as how we started when it comes to our faith. The Apostle Paul did not rest in his faith, even at advanced age, in chains, and facing death. As we proceed further into these last days it becomes even more important that Christians do not compromise what they believe. Regardless of who is running for President. I know this for sure. Despite our foot stomping, dire prophecy warning, hand-wringing insistence that everything is on the line for all creatures great and small this November 6th...I know this...God will still be in charge when we wake up on November 7th. What we hold to be true on the 6th, must remain so on the 7th. The Graham Association should have known better.

    Rev. Anthony
  2. Rev Anthony, unfortunately, there is a vast number of "christians" literally rolling their eyes at someone like you daring to bring true Godly principles into the political arena. These "christians" have values that trump God when it comes to money, power, national and/or political interests. They will try and justify this "temporary" abandonment of God by either mixing their pseudo-christianity into the soup of compromise or raising their worldly concerns' level of importance up to God's level and claim "We simply MUST do this". I can count on one hand the number of christians I have personally met that I was impressed enough to say to myself "Wow, they really do exist".
    What I mean by "impressed" is that I have only met a handful of christians who seemed unwilling to compromise their faith no matter what. Most seem to say to themselves" Given the situation, surely God will turn His head while I do this one thing". They fail to realize this is exactly the kind of test God is ESPECIALLY watching and for which we WILL be held accountable for. I spent decades as a double-minded christian and that kind of sickness gets so bad you can find yourself compromising away your very salvation.
  3. Thanks Dan for the encouragement. I am embarrassed to admit that I paused before writing this because i know how poorly some will recieve it due to their political leanings. As an admitted political junkie, i find the political arguments for and against each candidate compelling but as a Christian, I am appalled at the literal free pass we seem to be willing to give to Romney's actual professed faith, while hammering the professing Christian for his liberal views (not defending them of course). Again, I appreciate your comments.

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