How Close and How Far?

Who knows if Mitt Romney will be the GOP’s presidential nominee in 2012. I do know that his Mormon faith will be getting an increasing amount of attention as the next thirteen months tick by. Mormons say they are “Christian,” but many Christians say/believe that Mormons are not Christian.

I found this Reuters “Factbox” illuminating. Among the article’s points:

  • The religion is growing fast and half of its members live outside the U.S. (many in Latin America).
  • “Mormons have three books of scripture other than the Bible.”
  • “Mormons also believe that Jesus visited the Americas after his resurrection and that there is no eternal hell.”
  • The church policy of polygamy was removed in 1890 as a bargaining chip for Utah statehood.

And two more:

* The LDS Church says it is truly Christian, believes in Jesus Christ and corrected mistakes it says mainline Christianity made in its early centuries. But it has a different view of the Trinity from mainline Christians and additional teachings — such as the prophesies of Joseph Smith, Jesus’s visit to America, baptism of the dead or the existence of God the Father married to a Heavenly Mother — that those churches reject as unbiblical or un-Christian.

* While most Christian churches do not require rebaptism if a believer switches from one denomination to another, Mormons do not recognize baptisms in other churches and require all converts from those churches to be rebaptised. The Roman Catholics and Methodists require converts from Mormonism to be rebaptised while other Christian churches cast serious doubt on the validity of Mormon baptism.

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