Mormons have a Stingy Father
Of course, Mormons would vehemently disagree with this. They regard God as very loving. They see him like that because they don’t know how loving and generous he truly is. It is like a man who raves about his electric typewriter, not aware of what computers can do.
A talk by LDS apostle Dale G. Renlund at this spring’s General Conference (April 2019) illustrates not only the stinginess of Heavenly Father but also how they don’t see it. His talk was entitled, “Abound with Blessings”. Sounds great. The sub-title, however, already gives us pause: “Most blessings that God desires to give us require action on our part” (emphasis added).
This point, that we have to act before God will bless us, is what he spends the rest of his time talking about. He compares God’s blessing to a giant stake of wood which does not start burning until a match is lit. We need to light the match. “Small acts of faith are required to ignite God’s promises.” He goes on to say that these small acts are not insignificant either. “Often the activation energy needed for blessings requires more than just looking or asking; ongoing, repeated, faith-filled actions are required.”
But our actions do not just activate God’s blessings, they also keep them coming. “Faith in Christ requires ongoing action for the blaze to continue.”
This means that “when you receive any blessing from God, you can conclude that you have compiled with an eternal law governing reception of that blessing.” He bases this on a popular LDS Scripture, D&C 130:20-21, which he quotes: “there is a law irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated – and when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated.”
The bottom line is the Mormon Heavenly Father does not give any undeserved blessings!
How paltry this is compared to what the Bible tells us about God. He sends his rain on the just and the unjust. Jesus healed people who didn’t even know who he was, much less who believed in him (i.e. blind man of John 9). Most importantly, when it comes to the greatest blessing of all, Jesus’ death for our sins, God didn’t wait for us to act. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
When it comes to God’s blessings, one of the most accurate words we can use to describe them is “undeserved”.
Viewing God’s blessings as something we must activate by doing acts of faith or ones he showers on us in spite of our sins makes all the difference in the world. The first drastically lessens God’s glory – it makes him come off as stingy with his blessings. The second magnifies him as we stand in awe of his goodness and generosity,
It also makes a big difference in us. I have talked with many Mormons filled with guilt and shame because they weren’t being blessed by God. They were convinced they had not done enough to merit his blessing. Contrast that with the peace we have knowing God loves us so much that he blesses us even when we don’t deserve it. The first view puts a lot of pressure on; the second relieves a ton of pressure.
This Father’s Day take time to thank God for being such a generous, loving Father. And then take the opportunity to talk about your great father with everybody you meet. It is a message many need to hear.