John is on a cruise, and I am headed out on vacation myself within the next hour. So for today’s post I’ve chosen one of John’s finest and most important past efforts. As I read this this morning, I ask myself: Has John’s message been accepted yet?
A Letter To Some of My Fellow Evangelicals
Posted by John Schroeder on April 17th, 2007
In talking to my evangelical friends, both personally and in some emails I receive about this blog, there are some themes or statements that come up again and again. I thought I would address a few of them.
How can I, in good conscience, vote for someone whose beliefs are very different than mine?
Why would your conscience be troubled? You are voting for someone to do the job of president, not pastor. You are voting for the individual, not his beliefs. Can he do the job? Will he do the job in a way that aligns with my principles and values? Those are the questions that matter. When hiring someone for my business, those are the question I ask. Of course, I would prefer someone that believes as I do, but often I find candidates much better qualified for the job with other, or more frequently simply without, beliefs. I frankly would be foolish to hire a lesser qualified candidate to operate a soil sampling drill rig simply because the best candidate was a Jehovah’s Witness instead of a Presbyterian.
People’s beliefs really matter in their lives, and Mormons believe so differently.
Indeed Mormon belief is quite different, but how precisely does that matter? It is my opinion that Mormon belief is grossly misunderstood. It is not orthodox by any stretch of the imagination, but it is not so far off as the common perception might suggest. Consider the Godhead, to use the LDS term. Mormons are decidedly non-Trinitarian, fair enough. But does that make a difference in how a Mormon would govern? I don’t think so. Are our values based on our Trinitarian views? – No. Our values are largely based on the Judaic law, which is in turn based on monotheism, but not Trinitarianism. Some try to paint Mormons as polytheists, and the strictest possible interpretation of their theology of the godhead would indicate they are, but I have read enough Mormon theologians to know they do not carry their views of the godhead that far. Ask any Mormon if they are polytheistic and they will deny it vociferously. At best we can accuse them of having lousy logic in their theological formulations, but in practice and life they are little different than us. Please remember they hold the same scripture we do, plus “The Lord your God is ONE God” is scripture for Mormons just as much as it is for us. The additional scripture of Mormonism does not to the best of my knowledge contradict a word of the Bible – they interpret it very differently, but that is not a critical matter in this instance.
So, my question to you – specifically what is it that Mormons believe, as cited by Mormons, not anti-Mormon activists, that will affect how they govern? My researches of the last year and 100 years of Utah history says that they govern just like we do.
If you are still concerned, consider:
How do you feel when atheists say you should not vote for X because he is a Christian? This is America; our freedom to practice our faith is highly dependent on the freedom to have religious diversity in all areas of society, including government. If we, even in the privacy of the voting booth, exclude someone of another faith, then we are giving permission to allow others to exclude us. And we are increasingly in the minority in this nation . . . .
[tags]Mormons, belief, difference, Evangelicals, Mitt Romney[/tags]