モルモン

とは?

What of the

Mormons?

 

 

喜びを分かち合う

Michael Sanders

 

戻る

 

Your essay titled "Are Mormons Christians" was good. Here is a partial answer vis-a-vis why Christ has so many different versions of Christianity on our earth: 

“While  the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is established for the instruction of men; and is one of God’s instrumentalities for making known the truth yet he is not limited to that institution for such purposes, neither in time nor place. God raises up wise men and prophets here and there among all the children of men, of their own tongue and nationality, speaking to them through means that they can comprehend; not always giving a fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ; but always giving that measure of truth that the people are prepared to receive.”(See Brigham H. Roberts, Defense of the Faith and the Saints [Deseret News Press, 1907], 1:512-13.) 

As I have discussed before, the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ in its fulness is the "superset" of religious truth; all other religions are subsets. Many humans cannot embrace the superset and are happy with a subset. This is normal. "Mormonism" therefore transcends apostate "Christianity" and other religious systems more ancient than Christianity. Mormonism is a magnet for truth from all sources: all religions, philosophies, sciences (physical and behavioral), mathematics art, literature, among other things. Too many humans cannot even read and understand the books their religious systems consider "holy writ," and the idea of going outside holy writ to the good and best books of the earth in search of "truth" causes too great an intellectual dissonance in the average human. And many who begin to study the subsets get lost and lose sight of the superset (the "iron rod" allegory illustrates this danger), and are tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine. Nevertheless, for we who embrace truth, we also embrace the idea of the superset being a magnet for truth and relish this idea: 

"We recognize the truth that exists everywhere. That which is true is part of our religion; for it embraces all truth. Our Church is truth's magnet; truth from anywhere and everywhere is attracted by it, comes to it, assimilates with it, has an affinity with it. Truth from every source is recognized by our Church... If Catholicism has any truth that we have not, we will be glad to have it. If Protestantism had any truth that we have not, we welcome it. If Islam has any truth that we have not yet learned, we will be pleased to get it. If truth should come from any part of the world that we have not yet obtained, we will receive it and rejoice in it."  Charles Penrose, January 16, 1898. 

Hence, there is great wisdom in God having allowed and inspired the creation of so many different religious systems that give humble men and women that measure of truth that they are prepared to receive, but it is a marvelous work and a wonder that the superset has been restored -- are we strong enough to embrace it fully (or do we look for subsets within it and take hold of only a part rejecting that which we fail to understand)?

“These Mysteries are so profound and so exalted, that they can be comprehended by those only who are enlightened. I shall not, therefore, attempt to speak of what is so admirable in them, lest by discovering them to the uninitiated, I should offend against the injunction not to give what is holy to the impure, nor cast pearls before such as cannot estimate their worth. . . . I should say much more, if I were not afraid of being heard by those who are uninitiated: because men are apt to deride what they do not understand. And the ignorant, not being aware of the weakness of their minds, condemn what they ought most to venerate.” St. Cyril of Alexandria (made Bishop in 412 A.D.).

Remember: "The logos of God had become man so that you might learn from a man how a man may become God." St. Clement of Alexandria, "Exhortation to the Greeks," 1.8.4. “Being baptized, we are illuminated; illuminated, we become sons; being made sons, we are made perfect; being made perfect, we are made immortal. ‘I say,’ says he, ‘you are gods, sons of the Most High, all of you.’" St. Clement of Alexandria, "Stromata," 2.13.58.1.

“Four thousand years before God created these bodies, He created the souls and kept them beside Himself and shed a light upon them. He knew what quantity each soul received and He showed favor to each in proportion to its illumination. The souls remained all that time in light, until they became fully nourished. Those who in this world live in joy and agreement with one another must have been akin to one another in that place. Here they love one another and are called the friends of God, and they are brothers who love one another for God’s sake. These souls know one another by smell, like horses.  Though one be in the East and the other in the West, they still feel joy and comfort in each others’ talk, and one who lives in a later generation than the other is instructed and consoled by the words of his friend." -Sufi shaykh Abu Sa'id ibn Abi'l-Khayr (967-1049 A.D.); source: N. Hanif, Biographical Encyclopedia of Sufis (New Delhi: Sarup & Sons, 2002), pp.48-9.

May we too be friends of God and feel joy and comfort in each others' ideas.