Mormon Sunday school teacher fired for citing official Mormon website on race

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has a dodgy past when it comes to race. According to the Book of Mormon, people with dark skin are the descendants of the Lamanites, a lost tribe of Israel cursed by God after they sinned against him (2 Nephi 5:21). God would later lift the curse as the Lamanites converted to Christianity (3 Nephi 2:15). As late as the 1960s, these verses were used to explain the darker skin of Native Americans, along with their gradual “whitening” after years of intermarriage fellowship with Mormons.

But if you thought the early Mormons had odd thoughts about Native American genetics, you wouldn’t want to get them started on black people. Joseph Smith taught that African-Americans bore “the mark of Cain,” a sign of Gods punishment for the world’s first murder, and therefore, “If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot.”

The Mormons’ biblical race theory was the primary reason why the Church did not allow black people to be ordained as priests until 1978, when Church leaders had the “revelation” that racism was bad politics.

The Mormon Church’s website makes an attempt to wrestle with this past, albeit in slightly more generous terms than I’ve outlined above, by including its 2013 essay entitled “Race and the Priesthood.” The essay notes that when the Church was founded in 1830, Americans still owned slaves, and racism was part and parcel with American culture. This unbridled racism “influenced all aspects of people’s lives, including their religion.”

This strikingly secular explanation for racial discrimination in the early iterations of the Mormon faith is juxtaposed with prior explanations that the Church now (for the most part) rejects. The essay continues:

The curse of Cain was often put forward as justification for the priesthood and temple restrictions. Around the turn of the century, another explanation gained currency: blacks were said to have been less than fully valiant in the premortal battle against Lucifer and, as a consequence, were restricted from priesthood and temple blessings.

Interestingly enough, the final push for racial equality in the Church came from outside of the United States. A large part of why Mormonism is rapidly expanding its membership is its vociferous pursuit of converts abroad, and the LDS website cites expansions into predominantly non-white countries such as Ghana, Nigeria and Brazil — whose converts quickly realized that they were building temples they wouldn’t be allowed to enter — as the final nails in the coffin of Church-sanctioned discrimination.

book of mormon mormons

Book of Mormon via Shutterstock

Given that this is the official party line, and especially considering the fact that it’s actually a pretty interesting story, one would think that the Church would want to teach to its younger members.

But you’d be wrong. As reported by The Salt Lake Tribune on Tuesday, Brian Dawson was removed from his position teaching Sunday school at his local church because he had turned to “Race in the Priesthood” to answer a question concerning his wife’s decision to join the Church. Dawson’s wife is Nigerian.

Dawson’s use of the essay in Sunday school sparked a complaint from a parent, which led a Church leader to tell Dawson that “anything regarding black history before 1978 is irrelevant,” and that he should avoid discussing “black Mormon history” in future classes.

Dawson refused, relaying the following exchange to the Tribune:

“If the [Holy] Spirit guides me in a way that involves these multitude of documents,” he asked the bishop, “who am I to resist the enticing of the Spirit?”

The bishop replied, according to Dawson, “The Spirit is telling me to tell you not to use those documents.”

It would be one thing if this were an isolated case, like one local Wal-Mart missing the equality memo and refusing to write “gay” on a cake, but the Mormon Church appears to have discouraged the dissemination of the history outlined in “Race and the Priesthood” more generally. Dawson’s wife, Ezinne, told the Tribune that she herself had used the now-disavowed explanations for the Church’s past racial inequities. Even though she joined the Church in the 1980s, after the Church’s pivot away from inequality, no one told her differently.

In 2012, Randy Bott, a professor of religion at BYU, forced the LDS Church to publicly reiterate its 1978 position when he cited the curse of Cain when explaining to the Washington Post that black people still weren’t ready for priesthood in the Mormon Church. As he explained, African-Americans asking to be priests would be “like a young child prematurely asking for the keys to her father’s car.”

To this day, the Church’s official position on its racial history is not widely publicized. As the Tribune points out, “Race in the Priesthood”:

…was neither signed nor penned by the governing First Presidency, nor has it been mentioned, alluded to, or footnoted in speeches by LDS authorities at the faith’s semiannual General Conferences.

Until the Church does more than give bloggers like me something to hyperlink to, and actively acknowledges its racial history as not only theologically unsound, but as something worth repudiating, it will be hard for the rest of us to believe that they are serious when they say that everyone is equal in the eyes of the Church. Coming to grips with past injustice doesn’t mean re-explaining it and then looking the other way; it means admitting wrongdoing and using it as a basis for progress.

They’ve got a ways to go.


Jon Green graduated from Kenyon College with a B.A. in Political Science and high honors in Political Cognition. He worked as a field organizer for Congressman Tom Perriello in 2010 and a Regional Field Director for President Obama's re-election campaign in 2012. Jon writes on a number of topics, but pays especially close attention to elections, religion and political cognition. Follow him on Twitter at @_Jon_Green, and on Google+. .

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  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    N’other example of the brainwashed cult member. You can show them the exact words they’re using, and how their church instructed them to use those words, and they still can’t see it.

  • Butch1

    ;-)

  • McKleana

    The United States Senate begs to differ.

    Following Joseph Smith’s death, Brigham Young introduced an oath in the Temple endowment which required members to swear vengeance “upon this nation.” It became the subject of a United States Senate Investigation.

    Reed Smoot was a Mormon Apostle who had been elected a Senator from Utah. In 1903 a protest was filed in the United States Senate to have Hon.
    Smoot removed from office, on the grounds that he had taken this
    treasonous oath in the endowment ritual. The complete record of this
    episode was published in:

    U.S. Senate Document 486 (59th Congress, 1st Session) Proceedings Before the Committee on Privileges and Elections of the United States Senate in
    the Matter of the Protests Against the Right of Hon. Reed Smoot, a
    Senator from the State of Utah, to hold his Seat. 4 vols.[+1 vol. index] (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1906)

    Several former Mormons revealed the content of this oath. The wording was as follows:

    “You and each of you do covenant and promise that you will pray and never
    cease to pray to Almighty God to avenge the blood of the prophets upon this
    nation, and that you will teach the same to your children and to your
    children’s children unto the third and fourth generation.”

    The oath remained a part of the temple rituals until February 15, 1927.

    http://www.lds-mormon.com/veilworker/oathvenge.shtml

  • SoundOn

    Thanks and same to you

  • Silver_Witch

    We do agree on that point. Peace be with you….

  • SoundOn

    Look, we agree on something. Yes, it is a mistake to base your life on feelings exclusively, but if it feels right in your heart and seems right when you think it through in your mind you are in a good place to make a decision. Mind and heart together testify of truth, but each when alone can be fooled.

  • Silver_Witch

    Oh my god Butch you saw it too!!!! It was totally singing.

  • Butch1

    Was it a an aluminum tree with red, hanging bulbs on it and did it have a multi-colored filter which rotated in front of a light shining primary colors onto the tree? If you watch it long enough it may speak to you. (Some of them even sing Christmas songs.) ;-)

  • Silver_Witch

    Please stop putting words in my mouth. I never said that love is in anyway related to whatever the hell “the fruit of the spirit” is. I would not recommend that you base you life on “feelings” exclusively.

    I thought my first husband was a wonderful fellow based on my loving feeling about him, turns out he used crack, chased other woman and ignored his own son (well now in his late 60’s he would like a relationship with his son – a little late). So rather than basing anything on “feelings” I recommend you use logic, reason and emotion to determine what is real.

  • Silver_Witch

    I did have a Christmas Tree speak to me once, in fact it got up and walked over to me and wow that was something…and no I don’t think it was the acid I dropped earlier in the day…no definitely not.

  • Butch1

    One can be committed if they have enough witnesses claiming you have heard a “burning bush” speak to you. ;-)

  • SoundOn

    Actually, I am quite sure that you love your family. Love is felt in the heart and is a fruit of the Spirit. It’s the same stirrings of the heart that is the reason I know that the gospel is true. Most atheists I know tell me that I can’t trust those feelings, but I’m glad you disagree.

  • Silver_Witch

    No I don’t believe in sin. However, you don’t have to believe in a god to love, care, be a good person, or recognize dishonest and self-righteous people. I really enjoy it when god followers don’t get that people can have an ethical moral code without doing it out of fear that some mythical being will torture or punish them. I guess you only act out of fear of your god.

    I can love – how silly are you to think I can not love my child, husband or friends? Christians do not hold a monopoly on emotion – it does not raise from a god.

    I hope someday you find a way to live a life of love and freedom from your fear.

  • Silver_Witch

    I hate those darn burning bushes.

  • Trevor

    Excellent point.

  • Butch1

    And bats really aren’t birds. ;-)

  • Butch1

    This is what happens when you listen to too many “burning bushes.” ;-

  • Butch1

    Actually, the correct translation is: “Thou shalt not ‘murder’ . . .” not kill. Many translations have mistranslated that. This allows people to defend themselves and soldiers to go to war.

  • SoundOn

    Another atheist critic, what a surprise. So you don’t believe in sin, but yet you call me dishonest, evil, and self-righteous. How does that work? And you mention family members who once lived and were loved, but what is love to an atheist? When you describe it you start to sound a lot like a Christian, wouldn’t you agree?

  • Trevor

    Max, The Book of Mormon has frequently been charged with containing numerous anachronistic items. In all instances however, there is the possibility that such things were once in the americas but the evidence has either disappeared or BoM labels are based on the relabelling of New World items with familiar Old World labels. To claim that things didnt exist because they have not been found is to commit a logical fallacy of arguing from ignorance or silence. According to a famous and generally accepted archaeological dictum, the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Until the middle of the 20th century for e.g. the best archaeologists were convinced that the camel was unknown in egypt until Greek and Roman times despite mention of camels in the biblical account of Abraham (Gen12:16). Today, however, scholars realise that the camel continued to be used in egypt from prehistoric to present times. I could go into detailed explanations about the specific items you mention but i think the above will suffice for now.

  • Trevor

    Engaged in a conference now. Will certainly respond later

  • Max Mills

    Thank you for your reply! I have another question: What do you think of Book of Mormon anachronisms? Horses, wheat, and steel in pre-European America?

    Sorry, I am sure you get asked these sorts of questions a lot.

  • Trevor

    Well then i rest my case.

  • Trevor

    Max, context is everything revelation is given to prophets for the circumstances that the children of God find themselves in. At one time God said “thou shalt not kill” & at another time he commanded “thou shalt utterly destroy”. Regarding your post, i think it may be correct…However, i do know that in the context of your post we have never declared the mark of Cain as official Church doctrine. It may have done its rounds as Church folklore hence the misunderstanding.

  • Silver_Witch

    Education is not an indication of whether one can see. Apparently critical thinking does not cure blindness.

  • Trevor

    Blinded by faith? I know what it means to exercise critical thinking i am an ex-Master’s student.

  • Steven George

    Finding out I was HIV positive wasn’t easy But as time has passed, I have slowly come to terms with my HIV-positive status and try to tackle it with a positive attitude.

    In mid-2012 I became quite ill. I developed persistent flu-like symptoms, headaches, a nagging cough and sores that wouldn’t heal. My skin felt as if it was crawling, my legs ached, I felt nauseous and lost weight. Then exhaustion hit. It was an indescribable tiredness and no matter how much I slept I never felt rested.

    In 2013 I was hospitalized when my CD4 count nosedived to 86 (HIV-negative people have a CD4 count of between 700 and 1,000; a CD4 count of below 200 is considered dangerously low). It was a terrible time. I have a vivid memory of sitting in a wheelchair covered with a blanket and catching a glimpse of myself in the mirror. I looked and felt like a little old lady.

    I was so ill I could barely walk 200 meters. I hadn’t realized how little I appreciated my health until it was taken away from me. Fortunately I had a fantastic support system. Even though I was struggling to cope at work I didn’t lose my job. On the contrary the company I work for, my colleagues and my boss have been incredibly supportive throughout my illness.

    It was a frustrating time because I so desperately wanted to function like a normal human being. Yet I honestly thought I was going to die. I thought I was too far gone. It’s almost as if your body begins to reject everything it requires to sustain life. It was probably the scariest time of my life. I wished not for a bigger house or more money or a fancy car – I wanted to have the strength to go for a simple walk on the beach.

    To this day that time has stuck with me and it has been life-changing. I wasn’t really materialistic before but if I ever find myself becoming caught up in the whirlwind of life I stop and take myself back to that time. The best things in life really are priceless.

    All my pains and sorrows turn to joy and history from the day i came in contact with Dr ODAI, Who really help with his herbal herbs, I WAS TOLD HE IS A HERBALS AND HE CAN BE OF HELP, I gave him a try and it really work out for me, today here i am negative. Contact him via: ( [email protected] ),.,

  • Max Mills

    Trevor,

    A few posts below this one I discussed the Biblical problems of calling anything the Mark of Cain. Is the idea that the Mark of Cain is represented among modern humans still part of your Church’s doctrine? What do you think of my post on the subject?

    Thanks :)

  • Silver_Witch

    No I simply don’t believe in sin…and so there is no sin to die for on my behalf. And of course you don’t address the point that if your Jesus died for sin, why people still suffer – because of course you don’t have an answer for the inconsistencies of your blind belief.

    And the true ugliness of your faith is made by your twisting your original implication that mormons only baptize those who are “family members” but then admit it is some manipulation of liguistics to make it a “human family” so that you can baptize anyone who has ever lived. You are not my family, nor was anyone who “stood” for Anne Frank a part of her family – as her family knew she would never want “agency” to be baptized as a mormon after dying for being jewish. You are a barbarian and dishonest. Only evil person hide behind a faith to be self-righteous and IMPOSE their beliefs on those who want no part of it.

  • Silver_Witch

    He who is blinded by faith will never see…

    SilverWitch 23:32

  • Trevor

    “…the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”1Cor2:14

  • SoundOn

    Wow, so not only do you believe you have perfect relatives, but you also don’t seem to recognize that we are all part of the human family.

  • Trevor

    Folly is joy to him that is destitute of wisdom: but a man of understanding walketh uprightly. Proverbs15:21

  • Silver_Witch

    And what “relative” of Anne Frank stood for her to be baptized as a mormon.

    I can easilly be offended by your behavior, just as I can be offered that you would imply that any relatives of mine had sins. You see that is the whole problem with your premise that someone can die for another’s sins. If that were true and all sins were forgiven there would be no more suffering in the world since according to the the bible suffering is the price we pay for sin (particularly that woman that hung out with a snake and “offended” god by wanting wisdom leaving women to suffer the pains of child birth). But then I suppose most christians and mormons don’t believe a “son of god” would suffer for the sins of women since they believe they have no soul.

  • SoundOn

    We believe in agency and the right to choose just as you said. Freedom to choose is at the root of gospel principles. Giving someone the opportunity to accept an earthly ordinance. Being offended because someone was baptized for a relative is no different than being offended that Jesus Christ suffered the sins of one’s deceased relatives.

  • Silver_Witch

    Actually I said I would sue if I believed in baptism being of value – I find it quite offensive that YOU and YOUR church think you have the right to make a gesture to incorporate the memory of a human that was once alive and loved and determined for them self their religious persuasion. It is the arrogance of mormon self-righteousness.

  • Silver_Witch

    Oh honey you are cute…he is dead you know. Your post implied he is sending us messages now. English a groovy tool.

  • SoundOn

    Because email didn’t exist in Darwin’s age he wrote his thoughts down in a book for you to read. That’s what they did back in those days.

  • SoundOn

    You make a valid point that baptisms for the dead can only really be offensive those who believe it to be a saving ordinance.

  • Silver_Witch

    That is right because you can baptize the dead and “save” them so you “god” is growing his followers. In reality – could I find a way to start a class-action lawsuit against the Church of Mormon for baptizing the dead I would. That would required that I believe your baptism or any baptism meant anything.

  • Silver_Witch

    Ohh nicho you made the Mormon quiver by saying fuck…..

  • Silver_Witch

    So says Alma!!

  • Silver_Witch

    Did we get a message from Darwin….damn it I never get the emails – where do I lodge my complaint.

  • Silver_Witch

    “vociferous” is the better word choice i.e., vehement or clamorous. With a cult that is so desperate for members that they actually attempt to baptize dead people who were never members of their cult – vociferous is really the perfect descriptive word.

  • Silver_Witch

    Alma seems to have a bit of reading comprehension failure – I blame the education system in Utah….

  • Silver_Witch

    hehehe too true poor little perfect god having to speak through Asshats….hey I have an idea – why doesn’t he just talk to us directly? Guess it is because there is no god.

  • It’s always interesting to me to hear non-Mormons telling me what I as a Mormon consider. Not only are you mistaken; but your conclusion is a non-sequitur. The Bible cannot “consider.” It contains teachings–such as the statement that Jesus is the first, or preeminent of God’s creation–(which would certainly imply that he didn’t always exist), but no, Mormonism nowhere considers Jesus as a “created being.” That’s a construction foreign to Mormonism. Mormons believe that beings are procreated.

  • SoundOn

    Only in Mormonism (that I am aware) is there a doctrine that allows for all mankind to be saved. When you look at the big picture nobody misses the opportunity to accept the gospel.

  • sfcanative

    Considering the relative importance of embracing and living the tenets of Mormonism in this life, don’t you think the masterful plan of your deity is an epic failure when it comes to completely missing “his” audience of countless billions over the millennia?

  • SoundOn

    Yes, that one which is in it’s infancy, only being restored within the last 200 years, but which is growing at which may rival Islam within 100 years according to scholars. However, it’s not the size that is significant it is the truths which it contains.

  • LOL

  • sfcanative

    the “Church”? Are you referring to that insignificant organization which consumes the minds of .095367847% of the world’s population? The difference between you and me is that you believe in a couple of other god’s besides the creating force of the universe. What a surprise.

  • 2karmanot

    “God is perfect, and His doctrine is pure.” ROTFL!

  • SoundOn

    Mormons believe in the Godhead, which is three separate beings of God that are united in purpose as the bible teaches. Mainstream Christians believe in the Trinity which teaches something similar, but not quite the same thing because they add a few things to the bible in their definition.

    For example, as I understand it, Trinitarian Christians believe that God is three separate persons who are also the same literal being. Half of this statement comes from the bible and the other half is not from the bible, but from the Nicene Creed. Mormons agree with the first half of this statement which is biblical. We believe that there are 3 separate personages of God because this is taught in the scriptures in Matt 3, John 17, Acts 7:55-56, etc., but we disagree with the second half of the definition which is that the 3 separate persons of God are also the same being. “Being” is a philosophical notion, not a biblical one and nobody can explain how a being differs from a person without getting away from the Bible and going into philosophy. Can you please explain the difference between a being and person using the bible? Can you explain it at all without diving into philosophy? The Creedal notion that Jesus is the same being as His Father, is not mentioned ANYWHERE in the scriptures. Can you provide a scripture that states that Jesus is the same literal being as His Father? Can you provide even a single verse? Of course not, but if you are like most Christians you seem to embrace these creedal teachings as if they are new scripture. It is these new teachings that are at the root of why you reject Mormons as Christian, aren’t they? So why reject Mormons for not believing the Nicene Creed’s new teachings when you claim to believe that only the bible is the word of God?

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    That might make sense to you, but could you possibly untangle it for the rest of us?

  • SoundOn

    …do not teach that Jesus is the same being as God. In fact, it says that He was with God. So, who was He with? Was He not with His Father?

  • SoundOn

    Wrong. I have a copy of an original Book of Mormon in my possession and have been reading it. The content is no different than the current version. There are no verses or footnotes, but the content reads the same. The Book of Mormon teaches that Jesus is one with His Father, but this does not mean that they are the same person any more than a man who is one with his wife is literally one flesh.

  • SoundOn

    I see. So you are another atheist critic who rejects not only the Church, but God too. What a surprise.

  • Trevor

    Point taken. But when you get it wrong like that it is a reflection of what effort was really put into the article to get the facts right & the credibility & motive of the person is brought into question. It’s about responsible & accurate journalism. For what it’s worth it does create a poor perception of his work even if at least among Mormons.

  • Trevor

    Jon, the Church has given a lot for you to report on, you just need to do proper research to find the information or speak to the right people.

    For e.g. Here’s an excerpt of President Uchtdorf’s talk from a November 2013 General Conference Address:
    “…Some struggle with unanswered questions about things that have been done or said in the past. We OPENLY acknowledge that in nearly 200 years of Church history—along with an uninterrupted line of inspired, honorable, and divine events—there have been some things said and done that could cause people to question.

    Sometimes questions arise because we simply don’t have all the information and we just need a bit MORE patience. When the entire truth is eventually known, things that didn’t make sense to us before will be resolved to our satisfaction.

    Sometimes there is a difference of opinion as to what the “facts” really mean. A question that creates doubt in some can, after careful investigation, build faith in others.

    And, to be perfectly frank, there have been TIMES when members or leaders in the Church have simply made mistakes. There may have been things said or done that were not in harmony with our values, principles, or doctrine.

    I suppose the Church would be perfect only if it were RUN by perfect beings. God is perfect, and His doctrine is pure. But He works through us—His imperfect children—and imperfect people make mistakes.

    In the title PAGE of the Book of Mormon we read, “And now, if there are faults they are the mistakes of men; wherefore, condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment-seat of Christ.”6

    This is the way it has always been and will be until the perfect DAY when Christ Himself reigns personally upon the earth….”

  • Duke Woolworth

    It’s a bitch to find your genes are recessive. And the world is round.

  • Max Mills

    If you werent going to bother defending your view I dont understand why you would bother posting it. Do you think that it is the right thing to be condescending and snarky without supporting your snark with evidence?

  • Max Mills

    The view on Cain doesnt make any Biblical sense. If we assume Biblical literalism (which we have to in order to talk about Cain as a real person) all of the descendants of Cain died in the Flood. Noah and his family, the only human survivors, were descendants of Cain’s younger brother Seth. It is impossible, in a Biblical literalist framework, for any modern human to have inherited the mark of Cain.

  • sfcanative

    Neither book is true scripture. The Book of Mormon is nothing more than a timely novel about frontier America, the savage American Indians and further suppositions about a lost tribe of Israel which was a consuming theory about the Indians when Europeans landed here before Smith’s time.

    You should try reading the original version of the Book of Mormon to get a more realistic feel for the novel aspect of Smith’s writing.

    Even if any of it was true, there are a multitude of conflicting characterizations about who this Christ figure was, what he taught, and the obvious message of the Book of Mormon that the Mormon gods are racist, unloving, punitive a-holes.

  • The_Fixer

    I think you need to look at <a=href "http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/evo_02"this.. It should correct the erroneous information that you’ve been fed.

    Read all of that before you respond again. If you have something worth talking about after you read it, I’ll respond.

    Otherwise, drop it right now. You’ve brought a knife to a gunfight.

  • sfcanative

    The original Book of Mormon is very clear that the Lord is one person. Later editions were edited to make the Father and the Son separate beings. Founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith, also made the same declaration in his first handwritten account of the “First Vision” (Joseph Smith Papers) where he only mentions one being, not two, as later versions of his tale would have everyone believe.

    Smith changed his story about the Christian trinity later on in the process in order to make Mormonism a unique belief system.

  • Komsomoletz

    The real question is, how many one-handed pushups do I need to block traffic with to prove my place in prophecy?

  • Komsomoletz

    Come on Alma, be reasonable. Don’t try to pretend that what he said was what he actually meant. As an example, “minor quibbles” doesn’t mean “inconsequential details”- it means “I was wrong but I won’t admit it.” Don’t confuse what he said with what he meant (and don’t confuse either of them with the truth.)

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    John 1:1 and John 1:14

  • SoundOn

    You said: “small-scale evolution is how big scale evolution takes place.” Thanks for your opinion, but although you have strong faith in this concept science only confirms that small scale evolution is how small scale evolution takes place. It’s a leap to take science outside of this scientific box at this point. There are still numerous holes in the big scale evolution theory that you seem to religiously adhere to.

  • SoundOn

    The Bible teaches that Jesus is God, as does the Book of Mormon, but it does not teach that Jesus is the same being as His Father anywhere. This concept comes from the creeds, not the scriptures.

  • The_Fixer

    Well, which is it, a lack of scientific evidence making evolution wrong, or is it only right on a small scale?

    I’ve got news for you – small-scale evolution is how big scale evolution takes place. Over time, millions of years, small changes add up to big changes.

    You clearly do not understand evolution, otherwise you wouldn’t be saying the things you do.

    Do a modicum of study on the subject before you roll in here trolling. Right now, I have nothing more to add as I am talking to a wall of ignorance on the subject.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    Mormonism considers Jesus to be a created being. The Bible considers Jesus to be God, thus he always existed.

  • SoundOn

    Let’s assume you believe the bible to be true scripture. Where does it contradict the teachings in the Book of Mormon?

  • sfcanative

    “Entirely consistent” . . . “Every indication”? Hardly!

  • SoundOn

    I see what you are trying to project here, but your example is nowhere to be found in the lesson material from the link you provided. No, I am speaking from personal experience with those on these boards. Nearly all who have left the church are atheists by their own admission.

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    See? He uses all the words his church tells him to use. “Bitterness,” “bitter,” “atheists,”

    It’s all there. Perfect example of how effective the brainwashing is.

  • SoundOn

    Yes, please read the link which contains much truth while leaving the commentary on the side. Then compare it to the words of these bitter apostates which prove the point. This apostasy is why the harshest critics are atheists who once believed in the truths of the gospel. It is my experience that when one leaves the Church they first leave the scriptures with it. As they continue in bitterness they then leave God with the Church too. In the end they leave everything, but it’s all there if they ever decide to return because God lives and can be found by reading the scriptures.

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    Folks who want to see how Mormons are indoctrinated about “apostates” may want to read the propaganda that the LDS Church has prepared for inoculating it’s members against independent critical thought.

    https://www.lds.org/manual/teachings-joseph-smith/chapter-27?lang=eng

  • SoundOn

    Yes you do, but we get it.

  • SoundOn

    Evolution is only a fact when it is defined as minor changes within a species. However, the far fetched theories of Darwins origins of man where we all evolved from a single species is taken on faith because the scientific evidence lacks to support this theory. Science is neutral on the subject of God and this is by design because he wants us to have Faith in Him.

  • The_Fixer

    That’s ridiculous. The principles of natural selection, AKA evolution, have been well proven both in the lab through controlled experiments and by scientific observation of both the fossil records in nature and the world around us.

    It’s not a matter of faith, it’s a matter of knowledge. You are flat wrong.

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    Project much?

  • SoundOn

    Take a few deep breaths and think happy thoughts and you will feel much better.

  • SoundOn

    Is Darwin the leader of a religion? Then why such a cult like following by those atheists acting on faith of the things he taught when there is such a lack of scientific evidence?

  • SoundOn

    … except it is entirely consistent with the bible and shows every indication of being inspired scripture.

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    Your cult indoctrinates you to say that. Makes it easier for them to control you when they give you canned responses for ignoring whatever might make you actually, y’know, think.

  • SoundOn

    Yep, I see the bitterness too. The name calling always gives it away.

  • SoundOn

    Please watch your language and stop comparing Bill Clinton to polygamous prophets like Abraham and Joseph Smith.

  • Kurt

    I think you guys just proved me right.

  • Kurt

    I will. Let me write that email right now…

  • 1ge

    Who is “the rest of us” Jon? For how many folks do you speak? The LDS Church could spend the rest of the century trying to explain certain ideas or events, but it would never convince those who don’t want to be convinced in the first place. And, thanks for letting the Church know that it has “a ways to go.” This bit of information will be very helpful to us as we tread our thorny paths.

  • 1ge

    Right on.

  • SoundOn

    You would only be confused if you mistook the bark of the neighbor’s dog with the voice of God, but you would make this mistake if you ignore the scriptures.

  • SoundOn

    Atheists got a convenient message from Darwin, accept his words on faith, without scientific evidence and then Criticize Mormons for having Faith in prophets and scriptures. How ironic?

  • SoundOn

    Basically you were interested in hearing what you got wrong in your article until you were given specific examples. Then you lost interest in accuracy and became much more interested in what you consider to be faults with Brigham Young and the Church.

  • SoundOn

    I think he’s really trying to improve his resume so he can apply for a position at the national Inquirer.

  • SoundOn

    Where on the church website or the book of Mormon doesn’t say a Sunday school teacher is hired and can be fired?
    The basis of this article is an entire speculation. Just read the title which seems to indicate the reason for the dismissal as a Sunday school teacher, but when you read the actual article you discover that the church doesn’t ever give a reason for the dismissal. For all we know the teacher was teaching false doctrine. What would the church gain from sharing that with the media when it’s between the bishop and a member? This article follows the National Enquirer’s business model because this is not news.

  • olandp

    That is just what the Holy Spirit told me, if you have a problem take it up with him/her/it.

  • 2karmanot

    It’s very kind of you to reason with the insanity of Morm bots. Maybe they’ll give you an honorary baptism. :-)

  • 2karmanot

    One Million Concerned Morm Bots have spoken.

  • The_Fixer

    Only if he tells you that god told him to tell you that. Then, it’s OK.

  • Sure you claim that it was a result of “vociferous” [vigorous?] pursuit of coverts, only after claiming that the revelation was based on politics. Even then you conflated events. Mormons didn’t preach in black Africa until after 1978. It isn’t a mere quibble when you claim someone taught something when that person did not. Get your facts straight. There were lots of explanations, none of which carried the weight of Mormon dogma or doctrine.

  • So, 1, 2 and 3 are either addressed in the article or are really, really minor quibbles. For 4, even if you’re right, you’re basically saying “Joseph Smith wasn’t awful, Brigham Young was!” Not sure how that detracts from the point the sentence is making. 6/7/8 — I go out of my way to cite current LDS doctrine that says it was more about American racial attitudes than actual race theory, but my point (and the LDS Church’s) is that *that wasn’t the explanation offered at the time*.

    Also, re: “the 1978 decision was more likely the result of temple construction in racially integrated Brazil rather than American political considerations.” I say exactly that:

    “Interestingly enough, the final push for racial equality in the Church came from outside of the United States. A large part of why Mormonism is rapidly expanding its membership is its vociferous pursuit of converts abroad, and the LDS website cites expansions into predominantly non-white countries such as Ghana, Nigeria and Brazil — whose converts quickly realized that they were building temples they wouldn’t be allowed to enter — as the final nails in the coffin of Church-sanctioned discrimination.”

  • “Punishes someone for using their own materials.” Oh please. A Sunday School teacher being released from an assignment is hardly a punishment. My ward released two last week. Maybe they should have gone to the media….

  • OK, give me an example of a doctrine that was changed. Don’t say “plural marriage” because the doctrine is still part of the canon and never was disavowed. Ordination of Blacks isn’t an “eternal doctrine” either because the prohibition wasn’t ever part of the canon. You have an example that fits?

  • 1ge

    It would take too long to tell you all of the mistaken ideas you have presented. If you are going to write about something as personal and important as religious beliefs, you should be more careful. Basic rules of journalism should be followed.

  • 1) “people with dark skin are the descendants of the Lamanites.” There are lots of “people” with dark skins with no relationship to Lamanites. The Book of Mormon says that the curse was removed from Lamanites due to righteousness (3 Nephi 2:15) and that all the Lamanites were righteous for 200 years. 2) the cited passage says the curse was removed, and nowhere says anything about God “lift[ing] it later as they converted to Christianity. 3) By calling the Lamanites a “lost tribe of Israel” you imply that they somehow relate to the “lost tribes of Israel.” That’s just bogus. 4) “Joseph Smith taught that African-Americans bore “the mark of Cain.” You provide a link to a statement by Brigham Young, not Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith never taught that African-Americans “bore the “mark of Cain.” If you think he did, give me a citation. 6),7),8) Your paragraph on the source of Mormon priesthood denial has no basis in fact. There is documentary evidence that it was based on the current practice of slavery rather than any supposed “biblical race theory.” Likewise, the 1978 decision was more likely the result of temple construction in racially integrated Brazil rather than American political considerations. Blacks were ordained to the priesthood between 1831 and 1847.

  • Considering that most of the information in this post comes from either a) the Book of Mormon or b) the LDS website, I’d be really interested to hear what I got wrong.

  • Hogwash. There never was such an oath.

  • Should I follow the orders of my neighbors dog when he tells me to kill? I’m so confused.

  • sfcanative

    The Book of Mormon is very simply a treatise on Manifest Destiny and American Exceptionalism.

  • nicho

    Dismissed, let go, canned, sacked, asked not to come back — whatever.

  • nicho

    They also got a convenient message to no longer take the blood oath to destroy the US government that used to be part of the Temple ceremony.

  • UncleBucky

    Another laughable anecdote about the Mormon cult.

  • The amount of misinformation in the blog post is astounding–beginning with the title. Mormon Sunday School teachers can’t be fired because they’re never hired. You really should find out more about the specifics of Mormonism before providing your version under the rubric “a great nation deserves the truth.” That’s like posting “A great nation deserves healthy food” over a McDonald’s menu.

  • Indigo

    It’s tempting to say something along the lines of “The Holy Ghost told me to ignore Mormons” but that’s a cover at best, the fact is I can’t think of a reason to be interested in them. The ones I’ve met are boring people, the ones who’ve quit the Mormon church are so angry at the Mormons that they’re no fun to be around. So, like I said, “The Holy Ghost told me to ignore the Mormons.” Through the medium of signs and wonders, you see.

  • 2karmanot

    Well, it is true that Mormonism besides being laughable does leave a bitter racist taste in the mind.

  • 2karmanot

    Prophetess

  • Jason King

    americablog ……… SEE MORE INFO<–

  • emjayay

    Mormons got a convenient message from God about not having lots of wives when they wanted their own state. Then they got a convenient message from God about black people maybe not exactly being overbaked spawn of Satan three years after the civil rights acts and the end of Jim Crow. Given actual historian’s and anthropologist’s views of history all along, and now DNA, have they gotten a message from God about Native Americans not exactly being the lost nation of Israel, or whatever they claim?

    One thing they are going to have a problem with getting a convenient message from God about is gay equality. Like an oddly similar large cult group, Ultra-Orthodox/Hasidic Jews, a basic idea of their theology/patriarchal control system is that the male is the boss and the woman’s role is to stay home pregnant as much as possible and raise as large a family as they can crank out. Doesn’t mesh well with being gay.

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    Typical brainwashed cult behavior

  • 0-e^(i*pi)

    Wow! Did your church tell you to say that when you can’t deal with, y’know, the actual *issues?”

  • David Tiffany

    “Until the Church does more than give bloggers like me something to hyperlink to, and actively acknowledges its racial history as not only theologically unsound, but as something worth repudiating, it will be hard for the rest of us to believe that they are serious when they say that everyone is equal in the eyes of the Church.”

    To repudiate Mormonism’s racial history would be to repudiate what Mormonism’s second prophet, Brigham Young, taught as doctrine:

    “You see some classes of the human family that are black, uncouth, uncomely, disagreeable and low in their habits, wild, and seemingly deprived of nearly all the blessings of the intelligence that is generally bestowed upon mankind . . . Cain slew his brother. Cain might have been killed, and that would have put a termination to that line of human beings. This was not to be, and the Lord put a mark upon him, which is the flat nose and black skin,” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 7, p. 290).
    “In our first settlement in Missouri, it was said by our enemies that we intended to tamper with the slaves, not that we had any idea of the kind, for such a thing never entered our minds. We knew that the children of Ham were to be the “servant of servants,” and no power under heaven could hinder it, so long as the Lord would permit them to welter under the curse and those were known to be our religious views concerning them,” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, p. 172).

    http://downtownministries.blogspot.com/2015/03/progressive-revelation-or-making-god-of.html
    “Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so,” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 10, p. 110).

  • The_Fixer

    “The Holy Spirit spoke to me..”

    “The Devil Made Me Do It!”

    “I was only following orders.”

    Okay, the last one was a little gratuitous. However, I think the point can safely be made that the common element here is the lack of accepting personal responsibility for what was said or done in the past. It’s especially convenient when an unseen supernatural power can be blamed/credited for an original doctrine or successive doctrine.

    These people are laughably disingenuous, as are the major leadership of all religions.

  • Fordsell

    nah, I think we just see bitter. Thanks for playing.

  • nicho

    So is the Book of Mormon a divinely inspired books or not? Why would the gods that the Mormons worship follow the current customs of society? You would think that their ideas would be, you know, eternal. Unless, of course, the book was really written by a 19th Century con artist putting together a bunch of biblical sounding gibberish to fleece as many people as he could — no to mention fuck as many women as he could.

  • Bill_Perdue

    … double post

  • nicho

    If by “bitter,” you mean “truthful,” then yes.

  • Bill_Perdue

    In both the pre-Revolutionary colonial period and in the early days of the Republic religious cuts often pushed a racist line as a justification for slavery. In the South the main cult promoting slavery were the Presbyterians. “The paper acknowledged that, historically, the Presbyterian Church — from which the PCA later emerged — had wrongly stated that some races are inferior, that slavery is acceptable, and that racial segregation is justified.http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2010/summer/rooting-out-racism/a-denomination-con

    Now the mormon cult is trying to erase their history. So are racist killers like Zimmerman and killer cops immediately. They immediately try to cover up their murders, blaming their victims. Predictably neither the WH nor Obama’s DoJ are interested in arresting and trying these racist cops and their police forces on charges of domestic terrorism and violations of the pitifully weak Hate Crimes and Civil Rights acts.

    Acts of violence and racism in general have gotten worse, not better, under Obama and his immediate predecessors. “But the awkward truth is that when it comes to the goals laid down by the civil rights movement in general and Brown in particular, America is actually going backward. Schools are resegregating, legislation is being gutted, it’s getting harder to vote, large numbers are being deprived of their basic rights through incarceration, and the economic disparities between black and white are growing. In many areas, America is becoming more separate and less equal. my emphasis http://www.thenation.com/article/179968/truth-about-race-america-its-getting-worse-not-better

    The other great factor promoting racism is low wages and Obama’s proposal for a $10.10 minimum wages is both racist and a cruel joke. Socialists have a better idea. http://www.democracynow.org/2014/6/5/seattle_s_socialist_city_council_member

  • Kurt

    Wow. Bitter?

  • olandp

    “If the [Holy] Spirit guides me in a way that
    involves these multitude of documents,” he asked the bishop, “who am I
    to resist the enticing of the Spirit?”

    The bishop replied, according to Dawson, “The Spirit is telling me to tell you not to use those documents.”

    Really? The Spirit is telling me that your church is bullshit made up by a con man perpetrated by a bunch of greedy, horney, racist old men who have a thing for young girls.

  • goulo

    Interesting how often the Holy Spirit seems to tell people stuff that conveniently agrees with what they already believe or want.

    Sad how many people seem to consider “The Holy Spirit told me blah blah” to be a convincing argument.

    That quotation from Randy Bott justifying discrimination against blacks is quite amazing, especially in an article as recent as 2012. Wow.

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