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DBMormon

So Called "Middle Way" Or "New Order" Mormons

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In the "Defending the King and his Kingdom" thread along with other threads I see a problem that seems to arise. Strike it up to me making waves.

There seems from the point of view of many on here that "Middle Way" Mormons or "New Order Mormons" are looked at as an enemy of the church.

Examples of that rhetoric is

Please notice that I use the label in the “Abstract” (p. 127), and again on p. 140 to describe some critics of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. I indicate that some of these now also self-identify as New Order Mormons or use other similar or related labels
I indicate that cultural Mormons (understood my way) are not genuine Saints. If one finds no good reason to believe in God, or that there was even a Jesus of Nazareth, and hence finds the atonement silly, one can hardly qualify as a Saint. And there is at least one person who has boasted of holding just such an opinion while also giving advice to others about dealing with doubts.
I doubt that the Brethren are interested in weeding the garden of Book of Mormon studies.
<---- indicating that maybe they are interested in weeding the garden of "new order Mormons" or "Middle way Mormons"
As I have long observed and frequently noted, apostate evangelists are skilled propagandists.
Of course you do! And in so doing, I'm sure you frequently succeed in transforming doubt into hardened disbelief
Your own words, cited above, confirm that your beliefs are "anti-Christ."
Within the context of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, there is no such thing as a "Middle Way." There is only the way of everlasting death and the way of eternal life -- two ways; one choice.
<---- notice how "middle way's" definition is changed from one meaning to another. There are many definitions of Middle way Mormon - It can be as simple as a LDS who attempts to be less like a pharisee and try to live closer to the two great commandments, yet in this changed definition any "middle way" is anti Christ. One must set parameters before grabbing the broad brush

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The views above seem to want to place boundaries or creeds on belief. That, not too much differently then Elder Uchtdorf's quote, we could say "Don't judge me because I believe the same things differently then you do" It almost appears as though some here want to be the LDS police, in essence determining who here is on the Lord's side, who is a critic simply because they disagree with your view, and who is "anti-Christ because their views are different then yours.

That said can you pick out a discernible difference between the quotes above and the ones below

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http://www.pbs.org/m...ws/holland.html

If someone can find something in the Book of Mormon, anything that they love or respond to or find dear, I applaud that and say more power to you. That's what I find, too. And that should not in any way discount somebody's liking a passage here or a passage there or the whole idea of the book, but not agreeing to its origin, its divinity.
- Elder Holland
I think you'd be as aware as I am that that we have many people who are members of the church who do not have some burning conviction as to its origins, who have some other feeling about it that is not as committed to foundational statements and the premises of Mormonism. But we're not going to invite somebody out of the church over that any more than we would anything else about degrees of belief or steps of hope or steps of conviction. ... We would say: "This is the way I see it, and this is the faith I have; this is the foundation on which I'm going forward. If I can help you work toward that I'd be glad to, but I don't love you less; I don't distance you more; I don't say you're unacceptable to me as a person or even as a Latter-day Saint if you can't make that step or move to the beat of that drum." ... We really don't want to sound smug. We don't want to seem uncompromising and insensitive.
- Elder Holland
There are some things we can't give away. There are some foundational stones. If you don't have those, you don't have anything. So the First Vision, the Book of Mormon, those are pretty basic things.
- Elder Holland - Obviously one has to hold some sort of faith in these events but it appears from the other quotes he is allowing for them to not be held to a specific view of those events other then to believe them divine on some level.
... I didn't sense any great burden for her. Juanita was a strong woman. She was a very, very strong woman out of the hardscrabble world that southern Utah and southern Nevada settlers came [from]. ... I did not sense a sort of personal anguish, but you have to understand that by the time I would have been old enough ... that this is more than a decade after her publishing the book. ... When I knew Juanita and knew her family, she was a temple-going, tithe-paying, absolutely faithful Latter-day Saint. ... I saw her living out her life with the peace and tranquility [of someone] who had done a good piece of history and probably helped the church come to grips with something that all of us wish had never happened. ...
- Elder Holland

seems to indicate that while she took a load of grief from people who held to quotes like the top section, he actually applauds her and acknowledges she helped the church by addressing weaknesses that needed discussed. By doing so, she would according to the rhetoric above, by some here would have labeled made her in many ways a "Middle Way" or "New Order" Mormon and thereby becasue her beliefs differ she could be at risk of being defined as "anti-Christ". I realize this label was used above to describe "some" New Order Mormons and not all. I realize the label Anti Christ was used specifically to describe only those New Order Mormons who had no belief in Christ. The problem is that you are assuming it is you who has the right to create the creed of belief that constitutes "belief" in Christ. If select lay members are able to create defintions to determine if other members are permitted to be considered faithful then the Savior telling Joseph the creeds were an abomination is all for naught. While I agree with a higher standard of belief myself I also feel no authority to determine that definition for the church at large.

We don't discipline people in this church for very much. In a church of over 12 million people, I keep hearing about the September Six [the 1993 excommunication and disfellowshipping of six Mormon academics]. ... All I'm saying is, I think this church has a history of being very, very generous. There are some lines -- I'd probably say "lines," plural. The chief among these is the issue of advocating against the church. Personal beliefs within the give-and-take of life and associations and whatever you choose -- there are lots of people who carve out their life in the church all the way out to the edge and beyond. I guess that's always the way it's been, and that's always the way it will be. But I think where the church will act is when there is an act so decisive or so glaring, and particularly in this case, so much cast in the spirit of advocacy, that the institution itself cannot retain its identity and still allow that.
- Elder Holland

There are plenty of people who question the historicity of the Book of Mormon, and they are firmly in this church -- firmly, in their mind, in this church -- and the church isn't going to take action against that. [The church] probably will be genuinely disappointed, but there isn't going to be action against that, not until it starts to be advocacy: "Not only do I disbelieve in the authenticity of the Book of Mormon, I want you to disbelieve." At that point, we're going to have a conversation. A little of that is more tolerated than I think a lot of people think it should be. But I think we want to be tolerant any way we can. ... "Patient" maybe is a better word than "tolerant." We want to be patient and charitable to the extent that we can, but there is a degree beyond which we can't go. ..

- Elder Holland

http://mormon-chronicles.blogspot.com/2012/01/rescue-plan-to-address-difficulties-of.html

often in the church, when someone comes with a bit of a prickly question, he'll be met with a bishop who number one, doesn't know the answer. Number two, he snaps and says, 'Get in line and don't question the prophet, and get back and do your home teaching.' And that isn't helpful in most cases. So, we need to educate our leaders better, I think, to be sympathetic and empathetic and to draw out of these people where they are coming from and what's brought them to the point they are at. What they have read, what they are thinking is, and try to understand them. Sometimes that alone is enough to help someone through a hard time. But beyond that, I think we really need to figure out a way to live a little bit with people who may never get completely settled."
- Marlin Jensen

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So If "Defending the King and his Kingdom" is measured by how we sustain the brethren and keep our covenants (speaking ill of other LDS whom judgement is not ours), then the possibility exists that anyone who takes a harsher, call them out demeanor, declaring them Anti-Christs, may very well be just as outside the acceptable realm as those they wish to cast out.

As for me.... I would prefer we leave the 99 and fetch the 1 rather then stand with the 13 and call the 1 names.

If you attempt to say the two sections of quotes are saying the same things and carry the same love and empathy..... very very different

Edited by DBMormon
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the second segment of your quotes seem to be majorly Elder Holland's, but please could indicate your source?

BTW, i think life itself is all about staying away from the edges... (i believe they call it moderation!)

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Fundamentally Latter-day Saints have a single, all-consuming spiritual relationship and that is with God the Father through his Son, Jesus Christ by conviction of the Holy Spirit. At no point in that relationship does a leader at any level intercede or serves as an intermediary. There is a far cry from serving as a mouth piece for God and being God's intermediary. Prophets and apostles have a different, necessary function; they may aid us to walk more uprightly before God, they may assist us in understanding scripture better, and they direct the functioning of Christ's church on earth. I don't live my life to gain the acceptance of my bishop or of other members. These individuals are my fellow brothers and sisters, but they have nothing directly to do with my relationship with God. We must learn patience, charity, and kindness when dealing with others regardless of their own beliefs and opinions. At a future time, it is our prayer, we may all become of one mind and one heart. That will come when we stand before God and after the judgment and are allowed to enter his presence. Until then, let us not expect or demand perfection from others or that they think like we do.

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the second segment of your quotes seem to be majorly Elder Holland's, but please could indicate your source?

BTW, i think life itself is all about staying away from the edges... (i believe they call it moderation!)

http://www.pbs.org/mormons/interviews/holland.html

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Fundamentally Latter-day Saints have a single, all-consuming spiritual relationship and that is with God the Father through his Son, Jesus Christ by conviction of the Holy Spirit. At no point in that relationship does a leader at any level intercede or serves as an intermediary. There is a far cry from serving as a mouth piece for God and being God's intermediary. Prophets and apostles have a different, necessary function; they may aid us to walk more uprightly before God, they may assist us in understanding scripture better, and they direct the functioning of Christ's church on earth. I don't live my life to gain the acceptance of my bishop or of other members. These individuals are my fellow brothers and sisters, but they have nothing directly to do with my relationship with God. We must learn patience, charity, and kindness when dealing with others regardless of their own beliefs and opinions. At a future time, it is our prayer, we may all become of one mind and one heart. That will come when we stand before God and after the judgment and are allowed to enter his presence. Until then, let us not expect or demand perfection from others or that they think like we do.

Is that a statement of justification for them or a call to repentance to me?

I also would be curious to see where it says the Leaders should be kind and charitable and not verbally pass judgement while lay members have a right to disparage those who believe differently then them? <---------- this question is not pointed at you stormrider but the the thread generally since you are describing the function of a Prophet and apostle.

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Fundamentally Latter-day Saints have a single, all-consuming spiritual relationship and that is with God the Father through his Son, Jesus Christ by conviction of the Holy Spirit. At no point in that relationship does a leader at any level intercede or serves as an intermediary. There is a far cry from serving as a mouth piece for God and being God's intermediary. Prophets and apostles have a different, necessary function; they may aid us to walk more uprightly before God, they may assist us in understanding scripture better, and they direct the functioning of Christ's church on earth. I don't live my life to gain the acceptance of my bishop or of other members. These individuals are my fellow brothers and sisters, but they have nothing directly to do with my relationship with God. We must learn patience, charity, and kindness when dealing with others regardless of their own beliefs and opinions. At a future time, it is our prayer, we may all become of one mind and one heart. That will come when we stand before God and after the judgment and are allowed to enter his presence. Until then, let us not expect or demand perfection from others or that they think like we do.

I agree with you yet I have had three bishops whose mission it seemed was to dictate to others how to run their lives

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Sadly, this illustrates how far we have to go to become of one mind and one heart. It also illustrates how we are at different levels in our testimony and no one should be looked down on if they have questions that others may not. As Elder Holland says:

... If someone can find something in the Book of Mormon, anything that they love or respond to or find dear, I applaud that and say more power to you. That's what I find, too. And that should not in any way discount somebody's liking a passage here or a passage there or the whole idea of the book, but not agreeing to its origin, its divinity. ...

I think you'd be as aware as I am that that we have many people who are members of the church who do not have some burning conviction as to its origins, who have some other feeling about it that is not as committed to foundational statements and the premises of Mormonism. But we're not going to invite somebody out of the church over that any more than we would anything else about degrees of belief or steps of hope or steps of conviction. ... We would say: "This is the way I see it, and this is the faith I have; this is the foundation on which I'm going forward. If I can help you work toward that I'd be glad to, but I don't love you less; I don't distance you more; I don't say you're unacceptable to me as a person or even as a Latter-day Saint if you can't make that step or move to the beat of that drum." ... We really don't want to sound smug. We don't want to seem uncompromising and insensitive.

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I agree with you yet I have had three bishops whose mission it seemed was to dictate to others how to run their lives

over zealousness, huh?

I'd say we've all appeared that way to others at some points in our lives.

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As I understand it, New Order Mormons include those who either don't believe the Church at all; believe some, but not all, Church teachings; or who believe, but see problems in the Church culture. Despite those things, they choose to retain ties with the Church, for different reasons (family, because they like the people, because they see good in the Church, or whatever).

It seems to me that Church leaders would be happy to have these people continue attending church, because of what they can contribute to the Church community, in the hopes that they will eventually come to believe more strongly, or simply because they like them.

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Well, I despise labels. I have many doubts, have drawn many tentative conclusions based on my limited human capacity, and I participate in the Church as much as I am able.

If I am an anti-Christ in some people's eyes, so be it. They won't stop me from serving in the Church. If my presence makes them uncomfortable then they should call my priesthood leaders.

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At no point in that relationship does a leader at any level intercede or serves as an intermediary.

I think you've just discounted the entire purpose for the restoration of the priesthood.

I don't live my life to gain the acceptance of my bishop or of other members.

Are you a babtized member of the church? Did they at some point raise their hands to sustain you?

These individuals are my fellow brothers and sisters, but they have nothing directly to do with my relationship with God.

Only that they are the only ones that can place you in covenant with God.

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I think you've just discounted the entire purpose for the restoration of the priesthood.

Are you a babtized member of the church? Did they at some point raise their hands to sustain you?

Only that they are the only ones that can place you in covenant with God.

Fascinating... please explain.

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Well, I despise labels. I have many doubts, have drawn many tentative conclusions based on my limited human capacity, and I participate in the Church as much as I am able.

If I am an anti-Christ in some people's eyes, so be it. They won't stop me from serving in the Church. If my presence makes them uncomfortable then they should call my priesthood leaders.

You can come pick me up for church every Sunday, seth!

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Fascinating... please explain.

Do you understand the purposes of ordinances and the role of priesthood authority in LDS theology? If so, then there's no need for further explanation.

If not, then would next Tuesday be fine for a couple of young LDS representatives to stop by and visit with you?

Edited by Senator
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As a missionary, one of the scripture masteries that we memorized was Amos 3:7 - "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets." So the closer we can stay to that ideal, the better. And yes, this includes our current church leaders. And the further we stray from that, the greater is the risk that we get off the straight and narrow path. Having said that, I really don't want to kick anybody out of the Church, even if they might have some beliefs or notions outside the norm. I've had many questions and things that I've struggled with in my faith journey, and one of the reasons why we have the Church is to help each other get through it. We are all in this thing together. I would much rather keep as many people as possible in the Church, and have them use their talents to help build each other up and contribute whatever else they have to give.

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So let me pose a hypothetical to drive the point home further.

There are a group of Latter Day Saints. They have views which seem to fall outside of what the Leaders of the church hope they hold. This group no longer finds sanctuary in the instituions of the church so they have gone out and created web sites so as to find a place where they can communicate with each other and others who view life as they do, who value the same things, and who share their vision of the church. This group spends it's time complaining about those on the other side of the spectrum, nagging on why the other side fails to see what they do. They do Podcasts and they have hit pieces on those they disagree with. They see the other side as the enemy and think they are the enlightened ones. They used to be found safely within the institutions of the church but as they seemed to have distanced themselves further and further in rhetoric from where the Church currently seems to be standing, they have felt forced to create their own online society where they can feel accepted and claim they have hold of the real mormonism.........

Who was I describing....

A.) New Order Mormons

B.) Middle Way Mormons

C.) Those who have left or were forced out of NAMI and created the Interpreter?

.............................................. I'll never tell!!!!

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As a missionary, one of the scripture masteries that we memorized was Amos 3:7 - "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets." So the closer we can stay to that ideal, the better. And yes, this includes our current church leaders. And the further we stray from that, the greater is the risk that we get off the straight and narrow path. Having said that, I really don't want to kick anybody out of the Church, even if they might have some beliefs or notions outside the norm. I've had many questions and things that I've struggled with in my faith journey, and one of the reasons why we have the Church is to help each other get through it. We are all in this thing together. I would much rather keep as many people as possible in the Church, and have them use their talents to help build each other up and contribute whatever else they have to give.

Sky, what do you think generally, helps them more. calling them Anti-Christs and critics (even though the church chooses not to) or kindly, charitably putting your arm around them and extending the hand of fellowship while encouraging them to grow in their faith?

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Do you understand the purposes of ordinances and the role of priesthood authority in LDS theology? If so, then there's no need for further explanation.

If not, then would next Tuesday be fine for a couple of young LDS representatives to stop by and visit with you?

I want to hear your thinking in your words.

I would love to have some LDS boys stop by, I know they get hungry and my wife is a great cook. (I graduated from Le Cordon Bleu, but she won't let me cook at home. Scratch that- I made scrambled egg sandwhiches this morning. :rolleyes: )

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Sky, what do you think generally, helps them more. calling them Anti-Christs and critics (even though the church chooses not to) or kindly, charitably putting your arm around them and extending the hand of fellowship while encouraging them to grow in their faith?

I would say it's definitely better to be charitable. If we ever hope to reclaim anybody, we're not going to do it by calling them an anti-Christ. The only thing that would accomplish is alienate them further. Christ's great commandment was to love one another, right? I know that's hard to do sometimes, though. But we won't go wrong by doing it. Church discipline should be used only in extreme cases, and when it is used, it should be done in a spirit of love and concern for the person.

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I would say it's definitely better to be charitable. If we ever hope to reclaim anybody, we're not going to do it by calling them an anti-Christ. The only thing that would accomplish is alienate them further. Christ's great commandment was to love one another, right? I know that's hard to do sometimes, though. But we won't go wrong by doing it. Church discipline should be used only in extreme cases, and when it is used, it should be done in a spirit of love and concern for the person.

Amen, and isn't it odd that there have been almost no responses on this thread of defending that kind of behavior?

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DBMormon,

"Who was I describing...."?

A Mormon nonetheless!

[i've often wondered; why those who leave the church, do not let the church alone... i think therein lies the answer: Once a Mormon, Always a Mormon!!!]

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DBMormon,

"Who was I describing...."?

A Mormon nonetheless!

[i've often wondered; why those who leave the church, do not let the church alone... i think therein lies the answer: Once a Mormon, Always a Mormon!!!]

true and the sooner we become comfortable being creedless, and letting people govern themselves, and leaving the tent as big as the articles of faith allow, the better off we are. If someone crosses a line, then let's allow their Bishop and Stake Presidents to oversee it.

Edited by DBMormon
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1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

1 John 4:3 And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

2 John 7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

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If Jesus was not the Messiah, he was not resurrected.

If Jesus was not resurrected, he could not have appeared to JS.

If Jesus did not appear to JS, then JS is either a liar or a lunatic for claiming that he was visited by Jesus.

If Jesus did not appear to JS, then LDS Church is not the Church of Jesus Christ.

I'm sorry that people don't like the implications of their disbelief, but that does not change the fact that if one denies that Jesus was the Messiah, then one necessarily rejects the authenticity of the LDS Church. There is no way around it. It is utterly incoherent to claim otherwise.

Why, then, do unbelievers get so upset when we simply point out the clear and unavoidable implications of their disbelief?

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