Let God's Word Speak for Itself
I just got off the phone with a man who wants to leave Mormonism.
Truth in Love Ministry has been receiving more phone calls recently from Mormons and ex-Mormons looking for help. Many are requesting more information about teachings from the Bible. They found our ministry on the internet and after reading about our approach and methodology, they feel that Truth in Love is a safe place to call.
This was the case with James.
Over a dozen years ago, he was intrigued with the LDS Church after meeting with a pair of missionaries. He later became baptized in the temple. He joined the military and stopped going to the Mormon church. He tried several times to return, but found the rules of being a faithful Mormon too difficult to follow. Plus, he was beginning to question if all he was reading from the Book of Mormon was really true. Frustrated and desiring to learn more about what the Bible teaches, he gave Truth in Love Ministry a call.
It was a joyful opportunity to share with James what Christ has already done for us on the cross. By trusting in the work of Jesus Christ, we receive the benefit of the full forgiveness of sins right now. Faith receives Christ's perfect obedience, because he substituted himself on the cross for us.
I strongly encouraged James to read the Bible and let God's Word speak for itself. I suggested that he start with the gospel of Luke and try to read the words through the eyes of a child. In the meantime, Truth in Love Ministry will send him materials that are specifically designed for searching Mormons who desire to know the gospel of Jesus Christ.
James expressed his sadness in being involved with the LDS Church and felt foolish for doing so. The teachings of Mormonism can sound so appealing since they use words familiar to Christianity. Only after a person is well indoctrinated into the church do the real teachings come out. This also affects people who are trying to share God's Word with Mormons.
To assist people to understand the unique language of Mormonism, Truth in Love Ministry just completed a dictionary of LDS terms that is now available on-line. This tool is a ready reference guide that provides short definitions on key terms. These definitions are valuable to know when sharing God's Word with Mormons. Or in James case, if a person is investigating Mormonism. We also provide a short comparison on what biblical Christianity teaches on terms associated with salvation.
A good example is the word "forgiveness".
From the Dictionary on Mormonism from tilm.org it reads:
"The Lord commands us to repent of our sins and seek His forgiveness. He also commands us to forgive those who offend or hurt us. ..Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can receive forgiveness for our sins through sincere and complete repentance." (True to the Faith, p. 70)
Mormonism teaches that the forgiveness of sins is conditional and that a person must earn God’s forgiveness through an ongoing and thorough process of repentance. Typically, whenever the topic of forgiveness is introduced in the teachings of Mormonism, they focus on the need for Mormons to forgive others as one component of the process of repentance.
Biblical Christianity teaches: God extends forgiveness to all people and is based entirely on Christ's work. People receive instead of earn the forgiveness of sins by placing their trust and confidence in the completed work of Christ. Faith is the only instrument that accepts the gift of full forgiveness from God. All believers in Christ are fully reconciled with God and deemed worthy of eternal life.
[Taken from tilm.org Dictionary of Mormonism] We pray this tool will be a blessing for those who desire to learn the contrasts between Mormonism and biblical Christianity, plus help Christians share God's Word in a way that is more understandable for Mormons. The 3 R's of Sharing Christ with Mormons: Rejoice at the opportunity - be Ready to plant the seeds of God's Word -- Respond with love and respect.
Would you like to know how to share God's Word with Mormon missionaries? Truth in Love Ministry just launched a new initiative entitled "Please Open the Door." Check out pleaseopenthedoor.com and read more information about this exciting opportunity.