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Faith

According to the American Heritage College Dictionary, one of the definitions of faith is a "belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence." I believe that this definition is the most accurate for the religious context. Mormon faith does not, in my view, fit this definition though. In my experience, Mormon faith goes beyond this definition to maintain beliefs that contradict logic and evidence: what many would consider to be "blind faith."

I've found quite often that even when presented with incontrovertible evidence proving a certain belief to be false, Mormons simply refuse to accept the truth. The response I almost always get is that they know the Mormon religion is true because they've prayed about the Book of Mormon and felt the Holy Spirit's presence in their heart. They whole-heartedly believe that God would never lead them astray. They are correct that God would never lead them astray, but others will try and like Joseph Smith, many have succeeded. The Apostle Paul warned us of perverted gospels in Galations 1:6-8:

"I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel-- which is really no gospel at all.  Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.  But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned."

Paul's warning has not been heeded by Mormons. He warned us that different gospels could come from both apostles and angels, meaning that the mere appearance of the messenger or who they claim to have authority from should not sway us. Even if we think the message comes directly from God through the Holy Spirit, we should evaluate the message against what we know to be of God before accepting it as true. If the message is different than what has already been preached in the New Testament, then it should be condemned along with the messenger who brought it. Paul did not ask us to pray about the new gospel, he asked us to use our intellectual capabilities to compare it to what we already know to be the Lord's gospel. Is that how Mormons determine if the Book of Mormon is true? No.

Mormons are asked to pray about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon...they've probably asked you to read it and do the same. The answer for them always comes as a feeling in their heart, though, and never through intellectual scrutiny. How ambiguous is that? Is it any surprise that people who have lived as Mormons all their lives come to the conclusion that it is true with this method? We should take heed of the Bible's warnings:

Proverbs 28:26 "He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool."

Jeremiah 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"

I believe that God speaks to us in many ways, and often in ways we don't expect. The following story, which I received in a chain email a while back, illustrates that:

A massive hurricane was threatening a small town. The town was being evacuated, but one man would not leave. The police stopped by his house and offered to help him leave, but he refused, saying "God will save me."

The storm came and the town started to flood. The 1st floor of the man's house was now under water, so he took refuge in the 2nd floor. Soon a rescue team arrived in a boat and offered to evacuate the man. But the man refused, saying "God will save me." 

Then a levee broke and the waters rose further. The man was now trapped on his roof, clinging to his chimney. A helicopter spotted the man and dropped a rope ladder to pull him up. But the man refused to climb it...he shouted "God will save me."

The man's house then collapsed under the current and he was swept away and drowned. He went to Heaven and when he saw God, he asked, "Why didn't you save me?" God answered, "I sent the police, a rescue boat, and a helicopter...what did you expect?"

God doesn't always answer our prayers in the way that we want or expect Him to. Sometimes, He gives us the answer through our friends, a stranger we bump into on the street, or a website that we stumble upon. I hope that Mormons consider the possibility that God is answering their prayers about the truth of the Book of Mormon by leading them to my website. The truth is right in front of you, you just have to have the wherewithal to recognize that it is the answer to your prayers.