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Thursday, January 12, 2012

"Mormons in America" Pew research survey explores what it means to be a good Mormon

The following statistical information is taken from today's Deseret News.  This essay will focus on the results, and the opinion of The Mormon Eagle as to said results.  It will focus on doctrine and theology where rebuke and proper teachings are needed.  The Pew Research Center's Forum of Religion and Public Life survey details results taken from more than 1,000 people who identify themselves as Mormons.

Beliefs and Practices
According to the results published in today's Deseret News*, 77%  attend Church at least once a week; 91% believe the Book of Mormon was written by ancient prophets; 79% fully pay their tithing; 94% believe the President of the Church is a Prophet of God, believe God the Father and Jesus Christ are physically separate Beings, and believe families can be united for eternity in the House of the Lord; 83% pray daily; and 98% believe in the Resurrection of Christ.  However, this means, on the other hand, that at least: 23% do not attend Church at least once a week; 9% do not believe the Book of Mormon was written by ancient prophets; 21% do not pay a full tithe; 6% do not believe the President of the Church is a Prophet, believe God the Father and Jesus Christ are not separate Beings, and do not believe family relationships can extend beyond the grave; 17% do not pray daily; 2% do not believe in the Resurrection of Christ.

To those who do not believe the things stated above, have ye not read the scriptures, both ancient and modern?  Do they not testify of these things?  Have not the Apostles and Prophets, both ancient and modern, born sufficient witness that only active Mormons will go to Heaven, and not inactive ones?  The scriptures fully state, "Wherefore, if ye have sought to do wickedly [not follow the teachings of the President of the Church] in the days of your probation, then ye are found unclean before the judgment-seat of God; and no unclean thing can dwell with God; wherefore, ye must be cast off forever" (1 Nephi 10:21).  Thus it is so, for the word of God must be fulfilled.

In regards to education:  12% received a post-graduate education; 19% are college graduates; 33% attended some college; 29% are High School graduates; and only 7% did not graduate High School.

Social Issues
Concerning Polygamy 86% of those surveyed find it morally wrong, and 2% find it morally acceptable.
Premarital Sex:  79% think it is morally wrong, but 7% find it OK morally.
Abortion:  74% believe it morally wrong, and 4% do not.
Drinking Alcohol:  only 54% believe drinking is morally wrong, and 6% do not.
Divorce:  25% think it morally wrong, and 16% do not.

To those who find premarital sex and the drinking of alcohol acceptable in Mormonism, ye are deceived by the wiles of Satan.  Has not the Lord expressly stated, "Ye shall be holy: for I the Lord your God am holy" (Lev. 19:2).  Indeed He has.  The truth is that the Lord did actually raise up Joseph Smith the Prophet, and did command him to teach that drinking alcohol (D&C 89) and premarital relations (D&C 42:22-24) are wrong in God's eyes, and those found so doing will not only lose the Spirit of God, but be cast out of His Sheepfold!  Therefore, repent of your wickedness, and come fully back into Mormonism, which is God's one and only truth.

To be a good Mormon
Certain things are essential to being a good Mormon, which means worthy to go into the House of the Lord, and therefore, live with God again:  Only 32% said not watching R-rated movies was essential (which means more than half said it was not)  Less than half (49%) said staying away from coffee and tea is essential within Mormonism, whereas an alarming 51% (at most) said breaking the Word of Wisdom in that manner was OK.  51% said regular Family Home Evening was essential; 73% said helping the poor is mandatory for good-standing Mormons; and 80% said believing in Joseph Smith as a Prophet was essential.

In regards to R-rated movies, at most 68% watch them.  This must stop, for the Prophets and Apostles in modern times have warned against it.  Said President Ezra Taft Benson in his first General Conference after becoming President of the Church and Prophet to the world, "We counsel you, young men, not to pollute your minds with such degrading matter, for the mind through which this filth passes is never the same afterwards. Don’t see R-rated movies or vulgar videos or participate in any entertainment that is immoral, suggestive, or pornographic" ("To the 'Youth of the Noble Birthright'", May 1986 General Conference).  Also, the Lord Christ hath said to "let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly" (D&C 121:45).  Is not this clear enough?

Speaking of coffee and tea, numerous Prophets have stated what is wrong and what is right.  President Brigham Young stated concerning those breaking the Word of Wisdom through drinking tea and coffee, "Darkness and blindness of mind with regard to the things of God will be their lot; they will cease to have the spirit of prayer, and the spirit of the world will increase in them in proportion to their disobedience until they apostatize entirely from God and his ways" (DBY, p. 183).  Also, he informs us what "hot drinks" mean within the text of D&C 89: "I have heard it argued that tea and coffee are not mentioned therein; that is very true; but what were the people in the habit of taking as hot drinks when that revelation was given?  Tea and coffee.  We were not in the habit of drinking water very hot, but tea and coffee—the beverages in common use" (DBY, 182).  Also, Presidents Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith taught this as well.  Said President H. Smith, "There are many who wonder what this can mean. . . . I say it does refer to tea and coffee" (Times and Seasons, 1 June 1842, p. 800).  President Joseph Smith taught, "Tea and Coffee . . . are what the Lord meant when He said 'hot drinks'" (Voice from the Mountains [Salt Lake City: Juvenile Instructor Office, 1881], p. 12.).

I know what I have stated in regards to doctrine is true.  The results of the survey are shocking at times, but if we keep the laws of God, He will bless us.  In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

*"Landmark survey explores beliefs, attitudes of LDS", Deseret News, Thursday 12 January 2012, A9

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