Clash of the Titans LIX: Muslims and Mormons

November 8, 2007, 9:30 am; posted by
Filed under Debate, Job, Steve  | 6 Comments

In this corner, arguing that Mormons are more similar to Christians, is Steve!

And in this corner, arguing that Muslims are more similar to Christians, is Job!

Let me be clear. The LDS organization is not an orthodox Christian church. Although they teach the Bible and worship Christ, they also believe God was once a man, men can become gods, Joseph Smith used a mystical device to translate buried plates from an unknown language into an English text that happens to include even the errors of the KJV, that a vast civilization of diasporan Israelites moved to America, yet left no corroborating evidence, and — most importantly — good works are necessary to give effect to Christ’s death.

So why are we here? My opponent demanded I defend my support of Mitt Romney. I told him that Romney’s religion would not keep me from giving him my vote, and that, given the right contest, candidate and circumstances, I could — and would — vote for a Muslim.

I tell you now — it is indisputably true that the Mormon religion is more similar to Christianity than is Islam. I don’t claim the LDS faith is correct, so this debate might be about who is “more wrong.” So who cares, right? Well, in a world where some wrong people are trying to kill you, while others want you to give up Diet Coke, a little exposition of the fine lines might be necessary.

The fact that Job argues this point shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the world. Civilized culture and Judeo-Christian values are under attack by a terrorist enemy whose goal is universal forced conversion to Islam. Clearly not all Muslims are terrorists. But how many Mormons are? How much of their scripture is devoted to beheading those who reject it? Here’s a hint — none. Islam claims to be a religion of peace, but Mormons are much better at it. Would you feel safer as a Christian in Beirut or Salt Lake City?

I know Mormons teach some strange and unbiblical things, and I believe Joseph Smith was a con man who lied about, well, pretty much everything. Their conception of the nature of Christ is wrong; their proprietary sacred texts are frauds. But though Mormon doctrine is far more uniquely American than Christian (with its extreme focus on self-improvement and ‘progress’) it still contains significantly more of the truth than Islam does. And culturally, Mormons are indistinguishable from American Christians, except that people are more likely to see them as “different” and “kind.”

It’s true that Muslims make distinct claims on truth, just like us. So does Scientology. So do morons who deny the Holocaust or claim 9/11 was an inside job. Subjective, hermit-like logic like Job’s lumps a group in with its strongest opponents, because, hey, we all get real wound up, right? The logical extension of his argument, given his own theology, would be that he’d rather go to a potluck in Addis Ababa than Atlanta. Or the Vatican. Or my church.

If you are a Mormon, I pray you’ll come to know the whole Truth. If you’re searching for a religion, I urge you to avoid the incorrect LDS faith. But there are two things I will not do.

One is deny Christ’s ability to work salvation in the hearts of any who call on His name, regardless of the doctrinal error of their congregation.

The other is honor a faith that requires total submission to the rule and custom of man in the name of a dour and vengeful God, by pretending it is somehow similar to our abiding and singular faith in Christ and His atoning work on the cross.

This debate was born out of an oft-argued topic this election season — Mitt Romney’s campaign and whether evangelical Christians should support it. I, of course, say they should not, while Steve has been supporting the Governor since the first shots were fired.

In the middle of one of our many skirmishes, I informed Steve that I think Islam is more kin to Christianity than Mormonism is. A sophist strike, perhaps, but one I do fully believe. And here, my friends (and any FBI monitors who may be perusing this) is why I think Islam is closer to our Faith than the one in Utah you taw a puddy-tat…

It is most kin to our Faith because it is so unkin.

Bear an analogy? The Rolexes sold in Times Square are, regrettably, not actual Rolexes. They do not have the precision, dependability, craftsmanship — and most importantly — the warranty of an actual Rolex.

They are not the same animal, but their entire existence is the pursuit of appearing as though they were. Those that sell them will tell you they are from Switzerland, and perhaps share a fantastic tale of how they fell into their possession at such a obscenely low price. There are those who buy the counterfeits as fools, and those who know they are counterfeits, but wish to fool others: the fact remains, they are not now, and never will be, Rolexes.

They are damned to be knock-off versions. Just like Mormonism.

Meanwhile, Islam is Casio or Fossil or some such thing…peddling an immensely inferior product, I assure you, but a product that does not aspire to appear as something it’s not. It is its own brand, desiring at every step to point out its differences from other brands, rather than trying to align and assimilate. It is not trying to blur.

As such is Christianity, preferring the role of lightning rod.

I would prefer to debate, and would frankly prefer the company of a Muslim, because I would not feel as if I were being cajoled or subtly ambushed. They have their beliefs, distinct and wrong, which endeavor always to point out the flaws of Christianity wholesale; whereas the LDS appears to be in an almost constant state of apologetic deception — a role Christ would cringe at. He brought division; not compromise. He brought a demand for complete change in life, thought and heart.

Christ demanded that His followers stand in stark relief from their surroundings — not a sad pliability and arc. And any type of Faith that attempts otherwise finds itself playing a whole other game entirely. Spectators, really.

Islam is wrong, but they tell us with equal vim that we are just as wrong. We are not arm in arm, tiring our fingers out counting our comparisons.

And so I see Muslims as more like us, the same way I’d see an Iranian sailor as more like me than the fellow dressed as one selling cell phones at the mall on Halloween.

Which side are you on?
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Comments

6 Comments to “Clash of the Titans LIX: Muslims and Mormons”

  1. Steve on November 8th, 2007 11:06 am

    Even the ads showing at the bottom on my page fit. On my side: “The Truth About Mormonism.” On Job’s: “Muslim Girl Magazine.”

  2. Hoss on November 8th, 2007 11:34 am

    I think the next should be Scientology v.s. Jehovah witness which is more wrong!
    or something along that level

  3. David on November 8th, 2007 7:25 pm

    This is the very defintion of picking the lesser of two evils.

  4. A Question For You : Bweinh! on November 12th, 2007 12:45 pm

    […] now, you might see dating site advertisements for observant Catholics and respectful Muslims. The Mormon/Muslim clash, as I mentioned in the comments, has attracted several religion-specific ads, for temple garments […]

  5. Dsweetgoober on November 19th, 2007 9:19 am

    Testing my ability to comment

  6. Steve on November 19th, 2007 9:51 am

    I had to change the system we used to keep out spam after we received 170 spam comments in eight hours yesterday.

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