Scholar: Romney’s faith ‘makes people uneasy’

“It’s not that Romney is a religious man. It’s not that he’s a church leader. It’s not that he is … Continued

“It’s not that Romney is a religious man. It’s not that he’s a church leader. It’s not that he is open with his faith. It is that his Mormon faith, in particular, makes many people uneasy. And that unease has political consequences. [...] Our findings suggest that the type of campaign messaging that can sway voters away from supporting Mitt Romney because he is a Mormon will be difficult to counter.

-Scholar John Green discusses a new study of voter attitudes about Romney’s Mormonism.

Read more in the Faith 2012 Quote Archives.

Charles Krupa

AP

In this Thursday Dec. 22, 2011 photo, Republican presidential candidate, former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney, visits St. Paul’s Lutheran Church while campaigning in Berlin, N.H.

  • mobilemavy

    Does it make them as uneasy as Obama’s religion, Islam??
    Not by a long shot.

  • r4cannon

    It is amazing that most jounalists are so clueless about public attitudes especially regarding matters of faith. Mit Romney understands that Mormonism is not just another Christain denomination; rather it is a completely different religion. His statements at the Liberty University commencement made that clear and were a major reason why evangelicals responded positivily to his comments. He also knows as the history and specifics of his religion become the focus of public attention; the greater risk of damaging his chances of winning in November become. A major impediment for constructive dialog between Mormons and Christians is that the two religions use common language with vastly different meanings. Unfortunately, theologically uneducated journalists too ofter don’t fully comprehend these differences and add confusion and frustration to public discourse rather than clarity.

  • KBates2

    I’ll bet there are aspects of Barack Obama’s 20-year association with Rev. Wright that makes just as many people “uneasy”.

  • dhrogers1

    Reverand Jeffress said. “And I still maintain there are vast differences in theology between Mormons and Christians.”

    This seems to be a common view among many Christians and actually they are right to say that there are some major differences, although there are more similarities than differences. . However, there are also vast differences between current Christianity and Early Christianity.

    If Christianity means “historic orthodox mainstream Christianity” of today then I would agree that Mormonism is not historic Christianity; at least not in every doctrine. Although Mormons have much in common with other Christians Mormons also believe differently than historic Christians in some key areas. But the real questions to ask are 1) What is original Christianity? 2) Is mainstream Christianity of today the same as original Christianity? It turns out that Joseph Smith was right. Mormonism is a restoration of Original Christianity. It is not my intent to criticize Christians of today. However, with all the criticism of Mormonism it is important to notice that in many areas of belief Mormons are closer to original Christianity than are most Christians of today.

    Mormons believe in God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost. Our first Article of Faith states: We believe in God the Eternal Father, and in His son Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost. However “Trinity’ is a word that is not found in the Bible. Nor are the definitions and wording formulations in the extra-Biblical creeds found in the Bible. In 325 AD a council of about 300 (out of 1800 serving) bishops gathered in Nicea at the request of the pagan Emperor Constantine and formulated a creed that tried to reconcile the Biblical statements that there three persons called “God” and yet there was “one” God. They then forced all Christians to accept their solution as “gospel”, with varying results. Theological debates and other councils continued to tweak the concept for centuries which produced additional creeds.

    Mor

  • dhrogers1

    Joseph Smith taught “The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it”. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 121).

    The central belief of Mormons is that Christ came into the world as the Son of God. He healed the sick, caused the lame to walk, the blind to see, the deaf to hear, and restored life to the dead. He commissioned twelve Apostles to whom he gave authority. He suffered in Gethsemane, died on the cross, and was resurrected and will come again. He, and only He, provides the means for us to be washed clean in his blood from our sins, which sins we can never correct on our own or through our own works. If that is not Christian I don’t know what is. Christ never taught the need to believe in anything like the creeds. Those came later.

    Mormon belief is very much like the teachings of the earlier Christians – before the creeds – and also matches the teachings of Christ and the Apostles. The further back in time you go the more Mormon-like Christian doctrine becomes. Mormons are often portrayed as non-Christian when we don’t believe in the later extra-Biblical creedal formulations.

    The early Christians did not have the extra-Biblical creeds of later centuries. Were they then not Christian? The ontological debates and the wording formations of later centuries are not found in the words of Jesus or the words of the Apostles or in the words of the pre-creedal Christians . There is not a word about a one substance god in the Bible or in the early beliefs. If believing in the creeds is necessary to be Christian then that makes the earlier Christians not Christian – it even makes Christ not Christian.

  • dhrogers1

    From this passage we know that Jesus had his physical body after the resurrection. We also know that when Christ comes again, he will still have his physical body. (Zech. 14:4; 12:10; 13:6; John 20:24-28, Acts 1:9-11; Rev 1:7; 1 Cor. 15:3-8, 12-20, 35-42; D&C 93:33).

    It is claimed that Mormons are wrong because they believe in extra-Biblical revelation and scripture. Yet much of Christianity believes in extra-Biblical creeds and councils formulated centuries after the time of Christ and the Apostles. Most of the wording formulations in these creeds cannot be found in the Bible. This is often the excuse used to exclude members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) from being Christian. It is well known to historians that Christian doctrine changed over time and across different Christian groups.

    The Bible is then viewed through the lens of these creeds causing certain interpretations to be favored and other biblical teachings to be minimized or ignored. Interestingly, if you look at the doctrines of the early church fathers before the creeds, they are very Mormon-like. In a number of doctrinal areas the early Christians were good Mormons and would be rejected as non-Christian by many Christians of today.

    In many areas of belief (probably the majority of areas) Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) believe the same as most other Christians. It is true that in some limited areas – some very critical ones – the beliefs of Mormons differ from other Christians. Likewise there are some major areas of difference between Catholics and Protestants and likewise between one Protestant group and the next. Every denomination could make the claim that the other groups are not Christian because those other beliefs differ from their own.

  • Vanka

    Mitt’s theology is far more dangerous than Barack’s.

    Obama’s “Black Liberation Theology” focuses on liberty – on liberation from oppression in all its forms. I’m OK with that.

    Romney’s Mormon Theology, however, is Dominionist. Mitt and his Mormon religion officially believe:

    “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the kingdom of God on the earth, but is at the present limited to an ecclesiastical kingdom. During the millennial era, the kingdom of God will be both political and ecclesiastical, and will have worldwide jurisdiction in political realms when the Lord has made ‘a full end of all nations’ (D&C 87: 6).” (LDS Bible Dictionary).

    The Mormons aspire to have political dominion over the entire world! You can’t bring about and end of all nations without ending the United States of America! This makes Mormons enemies of the US and the Constitution!

    That is the most important thing you can know about Mormons.

    Doctrine and Covenants 87:6 says this “end to all nations” will be accomplished through war and bloodshed:

    “And thus, with the sword and by bloodshed…shall the inhabitants of the earth be made to feel the wrath, and indignation, and chastening hand of an Almighty God, until the consumption decreed hath made a full end of all nations;”

    And tolerance? None in Mormonism. Their surreptitious meddling in Proposition 8 in California, as well as other legislation around the country, proves they are nothing more than a wolf SuperPAC dressed in sheep’s (Church) clothing.

    But beyond that, their scriptures, the Doctrine and Covenants 1:14, adds that those who refuse to be ruled by this Mormon World Government will be eliminated:

    “…the day cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of his servants, neither give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles, shall be cut off from among the people;”

    We have seen this kind of authoritarian, theocratic, totalitarian, fascist, world-dominionist mentality before:

  • calvinnme

    Mormonism is completely different from Christianity. The most basic difference is that Mormons believe that their prophets can add to holy scriptures and that the words of these prophets have the same gravity as The Holy Bible. They also believe that one is redeemed through works not faith. However, this last bit of news is actually good. If Mormons believe that your behavior on earth is tied to your future in heaven then you better believe they’ll be on their best behavior always, which most of them are. I’d be more worried if Mitt was a Southern Baptist. Because they believe in redemption entirely through faith not works – “once saved always saved” – many Southern Baptists have a “ticket to heaven” mentality and there is no bad act they are not capable of, because they don’t believe they can lose their salvation.

    Bottom line: Obama and his buddies can dig a hole to China looking for dirt on Mitt, but if he is truly a practicing Mormon, the worst he may find is a Pepsi that he drank in a moment of weakness. I doubt they’ll find even that.

  • JackChanse

    all religions, and all objections based on religion, are equally absurd.

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