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Billy Graham taking heat for Mormon 'cult' reference removal

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  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Oct. 26, 2012 3:44 p.m.

    Whatever --

    Jesus and his followers were labeled a Jewish cult.

    Did that make them wrong?

  • Owl Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 26, 2012 5:25 p.m.

    A cult is a belief that is centered on one individual's personality. Does that mean Christianity is a cult? The alternate definition is a belief system that is not accepted by the majority. Perhaps that makes Christianity a cult in Pakistan or Indonesia. In practice the word cult is used by unscrupulous individuals to scare others.

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Oct. 26, 2012 7:11 p.m.

    If you believe the LDS Church is true. Why do you care what others think?

    Mr. Romney and Mr. Graham are playing a spiritual farce for political purposes.

  • RCS Orem, UT
    Oct. 26, 2012 8:04 p.m.

    When Jesus was resurrected, he showed his disciples his body with the wounds still in His hands, side, and feet. He told them He was not a spirit (Luke 24:36-9): He had a ressurected body of flesh and bones, which was glorified with the glory of His Father. (He had prayed, you remember, in Gethsemane, that Me might be so glorified with His Father. Of course he was not praying to Himself.) He also ate fish and honeycomb with the disciples, again, to prove that He was not a spirit without a body, but was a resurrected and glorified God.

    When Mary met Him at the tomb, He told her that He had not yet ascended to His Father and her Father, to His God and to her God. He was not going to ascend to Himself! As the Father was Mary's Eternal Father, so the Father was also the Son's Eternal Father.

  • RCS Orem, UT
    Oct. 26, 2012 8:06 p.m.

    You rermember that in His mortal ministry, Jesus said that the Father was greater than He. They were not the same Being. He was the Father's Only Begotten Son. He was not His own Son.

    Many teach that these are "myseries," that we cannot understand (how they are one, and not one; how He can have a resurrected body that can never die again and still be a spirit). The Bible presents these truths plainly, without mystery. The Bible consistently portrays the Son in reverence to the Father. At Jesus' baptism, the Father spoke. Jesus was not speaking to Himself and those present. The Father was pleased with the Son--Jesus was not saying He was pleased with Himself!

    So, Latter-day Saints accept these teachings of the Bible, as they are, without mystifying them. They are easily understood.

  • RCS Orem, UT
    Oct. 26, 2012 8:09 p.m.

    All Christians are entitled to their view of Bibilical teachings, but to label one group of Christians as a "cult," simply because they have a differing view of what the Bible is saying, is surely not a Christian thing to do.

    As a spiritual leader, I believe that Reverend Billy Graham understands this, and extends his Christian charity to others who also believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Father. May I suggest that we should all "Go and do likewise."

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Oct. 26, 2012 8:37 p.m.

    We are, we aren't, we are, we aren't.

    It would be humorous if such labels did not keep people from investigating the gospel and understanding the depths of our commitment to Christ. But they can. Absent these problems, I suppose we wouldn't care that much about labels (I probably wouldn't).

    But in order to defend his name we must take care that his gospel is not slandered or marginalized.

    There are enough mists of darkness for folks to contend with.

  • Designed Eagle River, AK
    Oct. 27, 2012 2:14 a.m.

    let's get some facts straight. On Graham's website, one of several articles presented in a question and answer format that addressed a number of topics including false teaching and cults was removed. The article that was removed listed a number of religions that most Christians would consider theological cults. The list included Jehovah Witnesses, Scientology, Unitarian, Unification Church and Mormonism. The other articles that warn readers about cults and describe them are still available on the website. Mormons would recognize a number of the statements describing a cult. The need for additional scripture, living prophets, denial of the trinity etc. are considered characteristics of a cult. It is evident that Graham's ministry still doesn't consider Mormonism as another Christian denomination. But I also don't believe for a second that he condones hatred or disrespect towards LDS. Rather Graham has lived and preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ his entire life. Our Lord calls all of us into relationship with Him.

  • bricha lehi, ut
    Oct. 27, 2012 2:20 a.m.

    Twin Lights:

    You know I have never thought of it that way. I usually just roll my eyes when I read of some new group labeling us as a cult, but it is true that we need to defend His name and what we stand for (in a humble Christ like way of course)

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 6:17 a.m.

    Mitt Romney's flip flopping disease is apparently catching, and Reverend Graham caught a bad case of Romnesia!

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 8:43 a.m.

    I M LDS 2
    I think BO has a worse case of flip-flop-itis than the Romney.

    I'll cut the deficit in half - it grew

    I'll close GITMO - he didn't

    I'll try the 9/11 masterminds in civilian court - he didn't

    no lobbyists in my administration - there are

    I oppose gay marriage - I favor gay marriage

    I'll reduce health care costs by $2500/year per family - costs have gone up

    open and honest administration - nope

    all bills posted on line 48 hours before votes - nope, see how Obamacare was passed

    my porkulus will keep unemployment under 8% - it didn't

    etc ad inifinitum

  • JimmyJackJohnJones Jonestown, TX
    Oct. 27, 2012 11:24 a.m.

    Man, what a riot. I love this quote, "Bart Barber, a Texas pastor, said the BGEA move “probably cost Mitt Romney my November ballot.”"
    That's just priceless. So he was going to vote for Romney when it was "confirmed" that he belonged to a cult, but as soon as Billy Graham said Mormonism is NOT a cult he changed his mind??? That's just rich! So now he's going to vote for Obama because Romney doesn't officially belong to a cult, and he's mad a Graham??? Seriously? Oh how fickle are the minds of the "religious".

  • sharrona layton, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 12:35 p.m.

    RCS, Latter-day Saints accept these teachings of the Bible, as they are, without mystifying them. They are easily understood.

    The Holy Trinity is the central Mystery of the Christian Faith. God has however given us some clues in regards to this mystery by what is seen in creation. An example:
    The Sun we see high in the sky, and we see the Sun through its light. In the same way, as we behold the Father through the Son, and heat is something we feel, and the Holy Spirit is the Comforter, he is the presence we feel that supports us and gives us consolations and gifts.
    Therefore the one Sun shows itself as triune, sunlight and heat yet one substance or essence, as its splendid in its unity and oneness. How much more the Creator of the sun is splendid and One in his unity and oneness in his triune being.

    We(Christians) therefore believe in One God in three divine persons, great is the mystery of this unity. Its beyond unity, its more higher than what we can conceive as unity.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 12:39 p.m.

    To Baccus0902, a missionary minded faith does (I repeat, does) care what others think. If we believe in love, we believe in public relations and how we are perceived. Doesn't mean I lose sleep if someone thinks I'm a martian, yet we should care how we come across. Truth will prevail.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 27, 2012 1:15 p.m.

    "We removed the information from the website because we do not wish to participate in a theological debate about something that has become politicized during this campaign"

    So, nowhere does it say that Mr Graham no longer believes that the LDS Church is a "cult", just that it should not "politicized" during a campaign.

    Does that mean that the wording may return after the campaign is over?

  • Emajor Ogden, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 1:34 p.m.

    Wow, a bonkers Evangelical like Billy Graham laying down his weapons to gain political advantage, and Mitt Romney seemingly willing to ignore the nasty vitriol coming from this man about his own religion, also for political advantage.

    Perhaps the question Rev. Samuel Wynn originally directed at Graham could also be asked of Romney: ‘What’s more important for the kingdom of God: politics or the message of Jesus Christ?' You could be generous and say that Romney is altruistically attempting to mend the divide between Mormonism and Evangelical Christianity, but the truth is he is trying to court votes in a close race.

  • O'really Idaho Falls, ID
    Oct. 27, 2012 2:55 p.m.

    I wonder why it's so important to other Christian religions that we remain with the "cult " label? How does that little word make any difference to them unless without it we're more valid and therefore a greater threat to them, their congregation size, and their livelihood?

  • Miss Piggie Ogden, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 3:02 p.m.

    @Emajor:

    "... but the truth is he is trying to court votes in a close race."

    Ans what was Obama doing when he gave amnesty to illegal immigrants?

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 27, 2012 4:20 p.m.

    "therefore a greater threat to them, their congregation size, and their livelihood?"

    Make no mistake. The "livelihood" of which you speak is a big part of most religions.
    Including yours.

    Power, money and control = central in most religions.

  • Neanderthal Ogden, UT
    Oct. 27, 2012 5:44 p.m.

    I think Pastor Barber should give this another thought. If he refuses to vote for Romney the only other viable choice would be (gasp) President Barry Soetoro who grew up not in America as an American but in Indonesia with his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham and his step father Lolo Soetoro.

    Nothing wrong with Indonesia. It's reportedly a nice country.

  • Lightening Lad Austin , TX
    Oct. 27, 2012 5:46 p.m.

    Bigotry dies hard

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    Oct. 27, 2012 7:35 p.m.

    They're right. There's no real way that Mr. Graham can come out looking good on this one. Either he was a lazy leader and didn't research the issue and pray about it thoroughly, or he's simply caving for political convenience.

    It would also seem that most of the so-called Christian right has "rendered unto Cesar" as they let go of many other commandments, for the sake of political expediency, such as the counsel to refrain from bearing false witness.

  • Brother Dave Livermore, CA
    Oct. 27, 2012 7:58 p.m.

    Looks like "bigotry" and "narrowness" is still alive with some "Christians".

    Jesus, Himself, was very open to ALL the scriptures say. He worked with, and conversed with, and Blessed... Samaritans, Publicans, and many many others who were considered "Out-Casts" in the society of roughly 2,000 years ago.

    Reverend Billy Graham is doing a Great Thing in being open minded to "other believers and
    followers" of Jesus by opening up with meaningful and respectful dialogue.

    God Bless Billy Graham!!!

  • Cougar Claws Lindon, UT
    Oct. 28, 2012 12:35 p.m.

    A 'cult' by definition is any organized religion, period.

    That makes not only Mormonism a cult, but any other religion with structure.
    That also includes the Catholic church, and many other Christian churches.
    That includes Islam, and probably most other major religions.

    So in conclusion, most religious people belong to a 'cult.' The term is completely misunderstood and misused as is most of the doctrine of the LDS Church.

    There are a lot of ignorant people out there. Sheesh.

  • Whoa Nellie American Fork, UT
    Oct. 29, 2012 9:22 a.m.

    Can someone please explain what in the world sharrona is preaching? I simply cannot understand her mysterious use of words.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Oct. 29, 2012 12:00 p.m.

    sharrona,

    "....We(Christians) therefore believe in One God in three divine persons, great is the mystery of this unity. Its beyond unity, its more higher than what we can conceive as unity."
    ____________________

    The Holy Trinity is a mystery because it was once too much of a problem. Early Christians weren’t daffy enough to think that Jesus went into Gethsemane to pray to himself. Nor were they prepared to trade in the one God of Israel for a deity duo. The paganism in them had no problem with the later but the Jewish roots of the faith precluded such an innovation. Then along comes the emperor Constantine as the first royal convert to Christianity who convenes a counsel to order his quarreling bishops to settle their differences.

    After much contentious debating of the divinity of Christ, the three persons in one God was the band aid solution the bishops came up with. Today, the trinity is Christian doctrine adhered to all but Mormons, Quakers, Jehovah Witnesses, Unitarians, and several other dissenting sects who hearken back to Christianity’s earlier roots. Never underestimate the power of seventeen centuries of orthodoxy.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Oct. 29, 2012 12:15 p.m.

    I can only imagine how early Christians were viewed by the "orthodox" sects of the time. Stoning comes to mind. I think today's orthodox Christians should worry more about their own salvation and less about whether Mormonism is a cult or a religion.

    Why not follow the more civil and kind-spirited approach used by Paul/Saul's mentor Gamaliel? "if it be of men, it will come to naught, but if it be of God, ye will not be able to overthrow it; lest perhaps ye be found even to fight against God."

  • CWEB Orem, UT
    Oct. 30, 2012 12:20 p.m.

    Go Mitt...beat Obama...keep our Constitution intact!

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    Oct. 30, 2012 12:50 p.m.

    I have to say that of non-LDS religious leaders in the world, my respect is the highest for The Rev. Graham. That he would, at this late point in his life see fit to take just a wee peel of disrespect off the view his site projected of LDS and their beliefs should be seen magnanimously and taken to heart by many others of his faith. We have so much in common, including dedication of principles of truth in a world turning increasingly away from what we together see as good. We need each others support where commonality can be extended and found.

  • Shazandra Bakersfield, CA
    Oct. 30, 2012 2:48 p.m.

    My people perish for lack of knowledge. Oy vey.

    Just read Jude, 2 Peter, 2 Cor. 11. What are believers supposed to protect? Who are they to reveal? Who masquerades as an angel of light? For what are we to contend?

    Do your homework and stop creating your own gospels. These comments reveal exactly why Baptists and Biblical purists refuse to blur theological lines.

    Billy has some 'splainin' to do!

  • Allen#2 WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    Oct. 31, 2012 8:48 a.m.

    Isn't it interesting to see "kind, loving", Christians using any article about Mitt Romney to bash President Obama?

  • kosimov Riverdale, UT
    Nov. 5, 2012 5:12 p.m.

    To all those who know why persons mentioned here did what they did, or could read the minds of those persons and know truthfully what they were thinking and why they did what they did: I hope you will soon open an office where you offer these services to the general public for a reasonable fee! I really would like to know why people do what they do. I would really like to know what their motives and intentions are without the need to figure that out or trust what they say. I could be more successful in business if I could read the minds of my competitors like you can read the minds and discern the real intentions of those who are running for office, as opposed to what they say Imagine how useful and valuable it would be if I could bring one of you to a contract negotiation so you could tell me what my adversary is thinking and what he really intends to do. I would not have to try to understand his words; you would just tell me his real thoughts and intentions. Just like you do with the candidates.