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October 9, 2011

Mouw: Mormons not a cult; evangelicals can support Romney

http://www.jewishjournal.com/blog/item/mouw_mormons_not_a_cult_evangelicals_can_support_romney_20111009/

Richard Mouw, a prominent evangelical leader as the president of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, takes issue with fellow evangelical Christians who refuse to support Mitt Romney’s bid for president because of his Mormon faith.

In a piece at CNN titled “This evangelical says Mormonism isn’t a cult,” Mouw argues that though evangelicals and Mormons disagree about important theological issues, they share a lot of values.

He writes:

Religious cults are very much us-versus-them. Their adherents are taught to think that they are the only ones who benefit from divine approval. They don’t like to engage in serious, respectful give-and-take dialogue with people with whom they disagree.

Nor do they promote the kind of scholarship that works alongside others in pursuing the truth. Jehovah’s Witnesses, for instance, haven’t established a university. They don’t sponsor a law school or offer graduate-level courses in world religions. The same goes for Christian Science. If you want to call those groups cults I will not argue with you.

But Brigham Young University is a world-class educational institution, with professors who’ve earned doctorates from some of the best universities in the world. Several of the top leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have PhDs from Ivy League schools.

These folks talk admiringly of the evangelical Billy Graham and the Catholic Mother Teresa, and they enjoy reading the evangelical C.S. Lewis and Father Henri Nouwen, a Catholic. That is not the kind of thing you run into in anti-Christian cults.

As for whether Mormons are Christians, Mouw writes, “that’s a complicated question.” Read the rest here.

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