LDS Church Releases Video on the Nature of God (According to Mormonism)

by Sharon Lindbloom 8 August 2019 A month ago (10 July 2019) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints posted a video in its “Now You Know” series titled, “What do Mormons Believe About God?” The video begins with the statement, “Some of the most fundamental questions in life are centered on the nature … Read more

Is the Holy Spirit of Mormonism Trustworthy?

by Sharon Lindbloom 22 July 2019 The testimony of Latter-day Saint Sunju Kim Muir was included in the June 2019 Ensign magazine, published by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (As I am unable to discern whether Sunju is a man or woman, I’ll use the universal “he” throughout this article.) In his testimony, … Read more

Jane Manning James: “Is there no blessing for me?”

by Sharon Lindbloom 24 June 2019 The Salt Lake Tribune recently (14 June 2019) published an opinion piece by Jana Riess, author, researcher, and member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Titled, “Commentary: Black Mormon pioneer Jane Manning James — only member ever sealed as a ‘servant’ — finally gets her due,” the … Read more

Mormonism and Catholicism: “Friendly in Every Respect”

by Sharon Lindbloom 4 February 2019 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is currently hosting its public open house for those who would like to see the new Mormon temple in Rome, Italy (January 28-February 16, 2019). Leading up to the public open house event, the church provided special tours for specific groups … Read more

An LDS Apostle’s Attitude Toward Doubting Mormons

by Sharon Lindbloom 21 January 2019 On January 13th(2019) Dale Renlund, an apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, spoke at a church-sponsored worldwide devotional for young adults. Together with his wife, Ruth, the Renlund’s talk addressed faith and doubt. The overarching theme was centered on the evil nature of doubt, where … Read more

Another Harmful Mormon Myth Refuses to Die

by Sharon Lindbloom 17 September 2018 An interesting article appeared in the Springfield (Missouri) News-Leader this month. It seems that columnist Steve Pokin became intrigued after an LDS acquaintance told him “that it was once legal to kill a Mormon in Missouri.” Because this claim sounded implausible to Mr. Pokin, he decided to do some … Read more

Worthiness Interviews in the Mormon Church Lead to Trouble

by Sharon Lindbloom 3 September 2018 In August the Mormon Mental Health Association (not officially affiliated with the Mormon Church) released a position statement regarding LDS worthiness interviews. In a nutshell, the MMHA’s professional opinion is that worthiness interviews are not a good idea. In the LDS Church, members are called to meet with their … Read more

The 6 Ideas That Led a Man to Mormonism

by Sharon Lindbloom 20 August 2018 LDS Living, a popular independent faith-promoting magazine and website for Mormons, recently produced and published a video, “The 6 Questions That Led Me to Christianity.” In the fallaciously-titled video, an unnamed man explains why he joined the LDS Church. He begins, “At 19 I had decided that Christianity could … Read more

Mormon Youth: The Hope of Israel

by Sharon Lindbloom 6 August 2018 I received my August 2018 edition of the LDS Church’s Ensign magazine last week. Bundled with the Ensign was a supplement: The text of a “Worldwide Youth Devotional” titled “Hope of Israel.” This devotional was presented to the youth of the Mormon Church in June by LDS President Russell M. Nelson … Read more

Mormonism’s Exclusive Line of Divine Authority

by Sharon Lindbloom 23 July 2018 Last month the LDS Church celebrated the anniversary of the 1978 lifting of the spiritual restrictions placed on black Mormons. Usually referred to as the Priesthood Ban, these restrictions not only disallowed black men from holding the Mormon priesthood, but also kept all black members from participating in LDS … Read more

Mormonism and the Blossoming Rose of Isaiah 35:1

by Sharon Lindbloom 9 July 2018 An article appeared online last month that took a critical look at water usage in the state of Utah. Journalist Nathalie Baptiste wrote, “Utah is one of the driest states in the country, but you couldn’t tell by how much water its residents are using. The average American uses … Read more

The Exclusiveness of Mormonism’s Truth Claims

by Sharon Lindbloom 21 May 2018 Mormon politician Mitt Romney sent out a tweet a week ago that the media deemed to be highly newsworthy. On May 13th Mr. Romney disparaged well-known evangelical minister Robert Jeffress, tweeting: “Robert Jeffress says ‘you can’t be saved by being a Jew,’ and ‘Mormonism is a heresy from the pit … Read more

A Fundamental Disagreement between Mormonism and Christianity

by Sharon Lindbloom 7 May 2018 On April 19th (2018) Deseret News published an article by Daniel Peterson in his “Defending the Faith” column that discusses the Trinity. Dr. Peterson begins, “A fundamental disagreement between Latter-day Saint Christianity and mainstream Christianity concerns the doctrine of the Trinity. Both outsiders and members of The Church of Jesus Christ … Read more

Is Mormonism’s Promise of Eternal Life for Sale?

by Sharon Lindbloom 4 April 2018 Last week Salt Lake Tribune journalist Peggy Fletcher Stack asked, “Does tithing requirement for entry into LDS temples amount to Mormons buying their way into heaven?” She explained, “Money may be the root of all evil, but, for Mormons, it also provides a pathway to the highest heaven. “That’s … Read more

Sharing the Good News with Mormons–Official Site

This is the official website for Sharing the Good News with Mormons: Practical Strategies for Getting the Conversation Started, edited by Eric Johnson and Sean McDowell (Harvest House, 2018) From the Back Cover: How do you share the gospel with those who don’t think they need it? Someone you know is a Mormon—a family member, a … Read more

Ever Wondered What Mormons Believe?

by Sharon Lindbloom 19 February 2018 The LDS Church recently released seven new one-minute videos via its web presence geared toward non-Mormons, Mormon.org. The videos discuss parenting, prayer, and basic beliefs held by Mormons. The three videos that fall into this last category are “60 Mormon Beliefs in 60 Seconds,” “Do Mormons Really Believe in … Read more

Will Mormons Worship Heavenly Father Forever?

by Sharon Lindbloom 5 February 2018 An interesting article appeared in the Salt Lake Tribune recently with the intriguing title, “Humans can become like God? Mormons say Orthodox Christians have similar belief — but that’s news to Orthodox Christians.” In this article, Bob Mims presents an overview of both the LDS concept of “deification,” and … Read more

Immersion in Mormonism: Especially for New Members and also Teens and Members who Struggle

By Charles Abbott Self-published, 2014 (Note: The subtitle of the book was later changed to “Follow the Path that Leads to an Unshakable Testimony”) Reviewed by Eric Johnson Check out the 5-part Viewpoint on Mormonism podcast series that aired Feb. 12-16, 2018: Part 1  Part 2  Part 3  Part 4  Part 5   Introduction I don’t normally write reviews of books … Read more

Mormons Urged to Keep on the Covenant Path

by Sharon Lindbloom 22 January 2018 On Friday, January 12 (2018) the 16th LDS President, Thomas Monson, was laid to rest. On Sunday, January 14, Russell M. Nelson was set apart as the new President, Prophet, Seer, and Revelator of the LDS Church. On Tuesday, January 16, the Church’s newly formed First Presidency (Russell M. … Read more

LDS apostle warns about revelation “from the wrong source.”

by Sharon Lindbloom 4 December 2017 On November 19, 2017, LDS apostles Dallin H. Oaks and M. Russell Ballard answered the questions of young single adult Mormons from around the world. Over 4,000 questions were submitted for this “Face-to-Face” event, but the approximately hour-and-a-half long broadcast didn’t allow for more than a dozen or so … Read more

Life without the Book of Mormon?

by Sharon Lindbloom 20 November 2017 LDS apostle Russell M. Nelson spoke at the Mormon Church’s October 2017 General Conference and asked, “The Book of Mormon: What Would Your Life Be Like without It?” After his conference address, Mr. Nelson asked the same question of Mormons on Twitter, Facebook, and in a blog post at … Read more

LDS Apostle Tries to Comfort Discouraged Mormons

by Sharon Lindbloom 23 October 2017 Check out a 5-part Viewpoint on Mormonism podcast series on this October 2017 General Conference Talk Part 1  Part 2  Part 3  Part 4  Part 5    LDS apostle Jeffrey Holland seems to be engaged in an ongoing effort to soften the harsh reality of Mormonism’s impossible gospel. A year … Read more

A Mormon Apostle’s Evasive Answer

by Sharon Lindbloom 5 October 2017 On 18 September 2017, the LDS Church’s Deseret News reported on LDS Apostle Russell M. Nelson’s recent devotional address directed at young Mormon adults. In that address, Mr. Nelson spoke of his appreciation for the Bible and invited his audience to join him in studying that volume of scripture … Read more

Finding Mormonism in All the Wrong Places

by Sharon Lindbloom 21 September 2017 Eric D. Richards is a popular LDS speaker and educator. Last week (12 September 2017), LDS Living magazine published an article Eric wrote that tells the story of how he and his mother came to be converted to Mormonism. It’s written as a sweet, Mormon-faith-promoting story, telling of the … Read more

Mormon Church Discipline and Confidentiality

by Sharon Lindbloom 5 September 2017 In a rare move, on August 8, 2017, the LDS Church released and excommunicated one of its general authorities, Seventy James Hamula. Mr. Hamula was raised in the Mormon Church, and held many positions of leadership over the years, including Stake President, Mission President, Area Seventy, Area President, Assistant … Read more

A Birthday Wish for Thomas Monson, the Mormon Prophet

by Sharon Lindbloom 21 August 2017 Today (21 August 2017), LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson celebrates his 90th birthday. President Monson’s service to the Mormon Church has spanned his entire adult life. According to Deseret News, “He was called as a bishop at age 22, a mission president at 31 and as an apostle … Read more

An LDS Apostle’s Answers, Grounded in Mormon “Truth”

By Sharon Lindbloom 8 August 2017 MormonLeaks recently released “The McConkie Papers,” a series of 37 previously unpublished “sermons, lessons, and accounts” written by LDS Apostle Bruce R. McConkie. One of the files made available by MormonLeaks is “Answers Grounded in Truth,” a compilation of typed and (originally) handwritten, undated notes found in Mr. McConkie’s personal … Read more

The Mormon Testimony and Wishful Thinking

By Sharon Lindbloom 25 July 2017 At the Mormon Church’s 2017 Seminar for New Mission Presidents last month, LDS apostle D. Todd Christofferson spoke on the power of the Book of Mormon in converting people to Mormonism. In his remarks, Mr. Christofferson told the story of a returned missionary who was struggling with his faith … Read more

Mormon Pioneer Mary Lightner’s Mythic Heroism

By Sharon Lindbloom 27 June 2017 Latter-day Saint Glenn Rawson, writing for the Idaho State Journal, recently published an article, “‘I’m A Full-Blooded Mormon’: Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner.” Drawing from Mary’s autobiography, Mr. Rawson relates a story that demonstrated Mary’s “uncommon courage for her faith.” Mr. Rawson explains that near the close of the 1838 … Read more

Mormon Endowment Ceremony Origins

By Sharon Lindbloom 13 June 2017 One hundred eighty years ago this month (June 2017) W.A. Cowdery, the Mormon editor of the Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate, told readers about ancient Greece. He explained, “The history of Greece for a period of three hundred years preceding the Trojan war, is intermixed with fables; but … Read more

The Supreme God of Mormonism

By Sharon Lindbloom 30 May 2017 In its “Until We Meet Again” feature, the April 2017 issue of the LDS Church’s Ensign magazine includes an article titled, “The Power of God.” This is a 500-word excerpt from a longer (2300-word) General Conference address titled, “The Doctrine of the Priesthood.” Mormon apostle Bruce R. McConkie delivered … Read more

Inaccurate Presentations of Mormon History Persist

By Sharon Lindbloom 16 May 2017 On Sunday (7 May 2017), LDS General Authority Kim B. Clark of the Seventy addressed young adult members of the Mormon Church in a Worldwide Devotional. Within his talk, Elder Clark spoke a great deal about the history surrounding the Book of Mormon translation. To augment his talk, Elder … Read more

Opposing a Mormon Prophet, Seer, and Revelator

By Sharon Lindbloom 2 May 2017 In a recent blog post, Mormon author Mette Harrison pits herself against the teachings of a twentieth-century LDS apostle. Responding to the question, “Do Mormons worship Jesus Christ?” Ms. Harrison takes issue with Bruce R. McConkie’s teaching regarding “Our [proper] Relationship with the Lord.” Mr. McConkie declared that Mormons … Read more

The Creator-Gods of Mormonism

By Sharon Lindbloom 18 April 2017 The LDS Church has recently released new scripture-themed coloring and activity books for children. One is an updated version of an older Book of Mormon coloring book, while the other is based on the Mormon scripture volume, Pearl of Great Price. Both are available to download for free. The … Read more

Perfect Mormonism

By Sharon Lindbloom 4 April 2017 At a blog site titled “Relationship Refinery,” Mormon blogger Kate wrote about her “Lifelong Wrestle with Mormonism.” In her article, Kate writes that there is one factor to which she attributes “any lasting peace or happiness” she has experienced. “that, unequivocally, has come from fully living my religion. And … Read more

Two Sets of Official Book of Mormon Witnesses

By Sharon Lindbloom 2 February 2017 In his continuing effort at “Defending the [LDS] Faith,” BYU professor Daniel Peterson has recently tackled the testimonies of the eleven Book of Mormon witnesses. He notes that the two signed testimonies appearing in the front of each Book of Mormon (one signed by three witnesses, the other signed … Read more

Mormon Business: Paying the Church’s Unpaid Clergy

By Sharon Lindbloom 18 January 2017 For a three-part Viewpoint on Mormonism series on this topic originally airing January 23-25, 2017, go to Part 1   Part 2  Part 3 Last week MormonLeaks (formerly MormonWikiLeaks) posted documents related to the salaries the LDS Church pays its full-time top leaders. These documents include several bi-weekly paystubs for LDS apostle Henry … Read more

For Mormons, it’s not Jesus’ birthday

By Sharon Lindbloom 23 December 2016 December Christmas celebrations notwithstanding, according to LDS leaders past and present, Jesus was born on 6 April 1 B.C. This fact was pointed out recently at LDS Daily in an article titled, “Was Jesus Christ Really Born in December?” Here journalist Aleah Ingram noted that James Talmage, a now-deceased … Read more

Why Does Mormon History Matter?

By Sharon Lindbloom 2 December 2016 Though the LDS Church claims disillusioned members are not “leaving [the Church] in droves,” talks and articles about stemming the exiting tide continue to appear in the news. This week, Mormon-themed Meridian Magazine published “8 Things That Can Pull You Away From the Church” by Gary and Joy Lundberg. … Read more

Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Gordon B. Hinckley

Reviewed by Eric Johnson For a 5-part Viewpoint on Mormonism podcast that originally aired January 9-13, 2017, click Part 1   Part 2  Part 3   Part 4   Part 5. During 2017, LDS members will be studying the latest manual published by their church,Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Gordon B. Hinckley. We will evaluate this book regularly, chapter by chapter, … Read more

Mormonism’s Splendid Sins

By Sharon Lindbloom 15 November 2016 Last week LDS blogger Christopher Cunningham posted an article with the provocative title, “21 reasons It Doesn’t Matter if The Church is True.” Mr. Cunningham clarifies that “the title is clearly meant to attract an audience,” because of course it matters if the Mormon Church is true. However, he explains, … Read more

The Real Threat of Mormonism

By Sharon Lindbloom 14 October 2016 Over the years I have encountered many misperceptions that Mormons have about Christians and Christianity. One of note is found in a little book published in 1998 by LDS author Scott Marshall. In an effort to explain the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, Mr. Marshall wrote, “THE TRINITY CREATION. … Read more

Mormonism’s “Near Deification” of Joseph Smith

By Sharon Lindbloom 6 September 2016 Mormon blogger Mette Ivie Harrison posted an intriguing article on August 23rd at Huffington Post. She titled it, “Do Mormons Worship Joseph Smith?” In the article Ms. Harrison expressed her dismay that some non-Mormons might misunderstand the way modern Mormons feel about the faith’s first prophet and wrongly conclude … Read more

“President Monson’s knowledge is unique and superior on ‘any subject, at any time.’”

By Sharon Lindbloom 23 August 2016 Beginning circa 1950, the Mormon Church promoted an “Indian Student Placement Program” for young Native American Mormons. According to the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, “The Indian Student Placement Services was established among native americans by the LDS Church in part to fulfill the obligation felt by the Church to help … Read more

Selected Testimonies of the Book of Mormon

By Sharon Lindbloom 5 August 2016 LDS Church News published an opinion piece yesterday (4 August) that notes a few “Testimonies of the Book of Mormon” wherein people “witnessed the power of God working through” Joseph Smith during the book’s “translation” process. Included are the testimonies of: Emma Smith, who was amazed at Joseph’s “ability to … Read more

Mormon Children on the Path to Heavenly Father

By Sharon Lindbloom 19 July 2016 The July issue of Friend, a magazine for children published by the LDS Church, includes an activity for children titled, “Your Path to Heavenly Father.” Presented as a board game, the instructions explain, “Your path back to Heavenly Father has some necessary steps. It also has other experiences that … Read more

Mormon Missionary Strategy Gone Wrong

By Sharon Lindbloom 21 June 2016 On June 11th (2016) The Salt Lake Tribune reported an odd Mormon-related story. Four LDS missionaries got in trouble with local authorities in Mexico for attempting to baptize three young brothers (a 9-year-old and 11-year-old twins) without their parents’ permission. Even stranger, the boys didn’t want to be baptized. … Read more

Fundamentals of Mormonism

By Sharon Lindbloom 8 June 2016 Morgan Scalley, the defensive coordinator for the University of Utah’s football team, addressed single adult Mormons last week, urging them to “master the fundamentals of the gospel” in order to achieve success. “What are the fundamentals of the church?” he asked rhetorically.  “They are everything you’ve been taught since … Read more

Jeffrey Holland and the Determination of God

By Sharon Lindbloom 11 May 2016 A couple of weeks ago LDS Apostle Jeffrey Holland addressed a Mormon congregation in Tempe, Arizona, telling them “don’t cut and run” when membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gets tough. Mr. Holland assured his listeners that “every promise will be honored…This is the Church … Read more

Murky Waters Spin Around the New LDS Push for Transparency

By Sharon Lindbloom 18 April 2016 In recent years the LDS Church has been working to change its image of being an organization that tightly controls and artfully spins historical issues to its best advantage. In what has been called a “push for transparency,” the Mormon Church has published several essays online that reveal some … Read more

Forever Families?

By Sharon Lindbloom 1 April 2016 Last week (3/22/16) Mormon blogger and author Mette Ivie Harrison answered the question, “Do Mormons Still Practice Polygamy?” Her “short answer” was “No.” But she followed up with another 1,000 words explaining that, in some cases, the answer is “Yes.” These special cases involve plural marriage among Fundamentalist Mormons … Read more

Mormon apostle urges gaining a sound and sure knowledge of the Atonement

By Sharon Lindbloom 25 March 2016 In preparation for Easter, the LDS Church’s March Ensign magazine includes a “Gospel Classic” article titled, “The Three Gardens of God.” Originally titled, “The Purifying Power of Gethsemane,” this was a General Conference address delivered by LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie in April 1985. The March 2016 Ensign article is … Read more

Chapter 7: Continuous Revelation through Living Prophets

During 2016, LDS members will be studying the latest manual published by their church, Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter We will evaluate this book regularly, chapter by chapter, by showing interesting quotes and providing an Evangelical Christian take on this manual. The text that is boldfaced is from the manual, with our comments … Read more

LDS Leaders Speak More of Jesus

By Sharon Lindbloom Mormon blogger Jana Riess at Flunking Sainthood interviewed Gordon and Gary Shepherd regarding their research into the themes presented at the LDS Church’s General Conferences. The Shepherd brothers have performed a detailed analysis of all past General Conference talks and published their findings in a newly updated book, A Kingdom Transformed: Early … Read more

The Mormon Amazon Challenge

By Sharon Lindbloom 1 March 2016 The LDS volume of scripture, the Book of Mormon, is available on Amazon.com. As with all things for sale at Amazon, the book is open to reviews. The Book of Mormon had apparently not been faring well enough, receiving too many negative reviews. According to KUTV.com in Salt Lake … Read more

Chapter 5: Joseph Smith, Prophet of the Restoration

During 2016, LDS members will be studying the latest manual published by their church, Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter We will evaluate this book regularly, chapter by chapter, by showing interesting quotes and providing an Evangelical Christian take on this manual. The text that is boldfaced is from the manual, with our … Read more

Joseph Smith is Triggering Faith Crises Among Mormons

By Sharon Lindbloom 22 February 2016 The Salt Lake Tribune recently conducted a survey, asking readers (Mormons) “if they have experienced a faith crisis, what triggered it and how they resolved it.” The newspaper received just over 1700 responses. The demographical breakdown was roughly in thirds: no longer members (538), inactive members (637), and still … Read more

Mormon Rebels and Eternal Punishment

By Sharon Lindbloom 12 February 2016 On February 4, 2016 the Huffington Post published an article by Mormon author and blogger Mette Ivie Harrison: “Do Mormons Believe in Hell?” She writes, “The short answer to this is simple: No.” Ms. Harrison goes on to explain that though the Book of Mormon speaks of Hell, it … Read more

Mormon Apostle Discusses “The Essential Doctrine of Christ”

By Sharon Lindbloom 25 January 2016 Last week Deseret News reported on an address Mormon apostle Dallin Oaks delivered to LDS missionaries during a worldwide missionary broadcast. Reaching an audience of 75,000, Mr. Oaks chose to define “Our message for missionaries.” Deseret News explained, “Following a period of dramatic changes in the number of missionaries … Read more

No Room for Debate:
Mormon Church’s Controversial Policy Revealed By God

By Sharon Lindbloom 15 January 2016 It seems that perhaps the Mormon Church is tired of all the dissention and discussion regarding the Church’s recently revealed policy affecting same-sex couples and their children. It began in early November (2015) when the Church Handbook of Instructions was changed to include a directive for Church leaders to … Read more

Mormon Scripture and the Bundy Brothers

By Sharon Lindbloom 10 January 2016 Ammon Bundy believes in his cause. As a 4th generation Mormon, his church has taught him how to know right from wrong, how to recognize the leading of the Spirit, how to stay on the right side of any line. So Mr. Bundy is confident in his actions. He … Read more

“Understanding the Handbook”: A Review

By Eric Johnson The LDS Church has received a firestorm of criticism for adding a new section to its Handbook 1 (16.13) that prohibits children living in homes with homosexual parents from being able to participate in naming/blessing rites or baptism at the age of 8. For more on that and to better understand my comments … Read more

Should LDS Church art coincide with the facts?

For many years the LDS Church has used staff artists to provide illustrations for its church manuals and magazines. Book of Mormon and Bible stories are commonly depicted, as well as historical church events.  One favorite scene for LDS articles is Joseph Smith’s translation of the Book of Mormon. For example, the front cover of the Feb. 2001 Ensign magazine shows Smith looking at the gold plates and translating them by running his finger over them. Is this really how the Book of Mormon was translated?