Why Mormonism is not a cult
It was made apparent to me at a very early age that the religion I grew up with was looked upon with vast indifference among other denominations of Christianity. I recall some kids at school catching wind of the fact that I was a Mormon and a small group of them approaching me. "Are you really a Mormon?" one of them asked. I was a little confused and afraid to answer them. "Yeah, what religion are you?" I said, then they all started to list off their various religious affiliations.
It was nothing really, just a little exposure to my mind that something about my family was different than other people, and I did not like that thought. I let it fester for a few years and afterwards I did not want to go to church. Regardless my loving mother dragged me there kicking and screaming every Sunday.
As I was going into high school I recall a particular kid who always wanted to debate me about Mormonism. He showed me a book titled "why Mormonism is a cult" and thought he could trip up my faith by dissecting the book of Mormon and the history of the LDS church. I was amused by this young man's passion and utter disregard for the fact that I was completely uneducated about my own religion, nor did I have any desire to be educated about it. In fact I halfheartedly despised it. Even the shop teacher knew more about my religion than I did. He said Mormons believe that Jesus came to America. That was news to me. It just shows how much I paid attention in Sunday School.
I recall taking that kid's little anti-Mormon pocket book, tearing it up, and throwing it in the trash. If anything he sparked a little more passion in me to retain my beliefs. It's interesting how that had a reverse effect to what he intended. Even if I were to reject Mormonism I most definitely would not be joining his religion. It reminds me of all those little anti-Mormon articles or videos I see on the internet every now and then. Sure you can show them to some people and you might have a little success pulling them away from one religious organization, but all you are really doing is building a testimony against religion in of its self.
That is the trending phenomenon, to say that you don't have to go to church to believe in God, or to resonate in their minds the false notion that Jesus was against organized religion. But you cut off your nose to spite your face in that the influence of God is broadened by the strengthening of his church, and pulling them away from the very walls that lift them up effectively weakens his influence on the world. Seeking after this new age embodiment of inner religion devoid of outward influence leaves the world in a state of disarray, without Baptism, sacraments, priesthood blessings, or any other holy ordinances that uplift and sanctify the soul.
As it stands Christianity has the monopoly on charities in the world, but where would those charities be without organized religion? They would dwindle as people fail to live up to biblical standards, and invent their own image of what they think God should be like. You could rationalize away things like tithing, charitable contributions, and service to others.
Charity alone can stand as a forthright evidence against the claim that Mormonism is a cult.
"He that giveth unto the poor shall not lack: but he that hideth his eyes shall have many a curse." -Proverbs 28:27
incidentally most of the blue states who voted down God at their national convention this year give the least.
So if we are to abandon our churches and pursue only inner faith we would be hiding the candle under the bushel rather than setting it upon a hill, don't you think? It would seem to me that by the standard of charity prescribed in the bible every other religion that is prevalent in every other state on the chart seems to suffering from a small case of cult like reclusveness when it comes to being charitable.
Culturally Mormons are resilient and self sustaining. recently a dam in Utah broke which caused devastation to the town of Santa Clara. The people of Utah sent FEMA packing that day because they speak religiously about preparation for such events. They were calm and organized, and focused on what needed to be done to restore the town. Contrast that to the disgraceful events that occurred in Louisiana when the levy broke in New Orleans, the looting, the violence, the wasteful spending, and the fraud that ensued in the aftermath.
So now there's something I just can't wrap my brain around, because I grew up in the crazy world of Mormonism I am astounded to this day at the accusation from other religions that the LDS church is a cult. By the way another name for Satan is "the accuser" and I've seen several churches blatantly disregard the commandment not to falsely accuse their neighbor in this regard.
But having grown up in one of the most somber and mellow churches, where people wouldn't so much as clap in a chapel after a masterful piano concerto was delivered, out of respect for the sacredness of that room does not evoke an iota of fanaticism or mindless zealotry, or even a hint of unusual worship or practices. Yet people scrape through the barrel to find something that somebody said a hundred years ago for the sake of polarization and demonizing simply because they disagree with how we define our faith.
People of the Mormon faith know exactly what their values are and are not afraid to stand up for them. The divorce rate among us is low, the people are healthier than average Americans, and they have a longer life expectancy. So if you are a practicing Mormon chances are you will have a long and happy life.
As I said in the beginning, it was made apparent to me that my religion is different than the rest of Christianity and it most definitely is. The main difference is the abundance of good fruits it produces.