Some of you may have read comments by Ed Enochs on the other board. I asked Mr. Enochs if he would like to say something about ways that mormons and evangelicals can work together. Below is his response. I believe that his answer is interesting and revelatory concerning the potential for entente between the LDS and evangelical communities. While I obviously disagree with some of his conclusions, his view is interesting nonetheless.
“Dear LDS Friends,
I have been asked by Steve Evans to share with you my thoughts as to how Evangelical Christians and members of the LDS Church can work together towards understanding each other. I will do so gladly, since the Bible, God’s exclusively inerrant, inspired and infallible Word exhorts us to; “Sanctify the Lord God in our hearts and always be ready to give an answer to everyone that asks us for a reason for the hope that is in us” (1 Peter 3:15).
I would like to first of introduce myself, my name is Lee Edward Enochs and I have been an Evangelical Christian for almost 20 years. I have had the blessing of have been educated at some of Evangelicalism’s most respected universities and graduate schools. My singular focus and purpose in human existence is to give glory to God and proclaim the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God and Savior of the World, who died on the cross and rose again from the dead to give us life eternal.
I believe in attempting to work towards understanding one another, it is of paramount importance that we discuss the issues that divide us, in a loving and coherent manner, without using hostile and unnecessary language that only serves to widen the divide that is between us (1 Corinthians 13).
I believe it is also fundamentally important when Evangelical Christians and Mormons get together to discuss the issues of theology that divide us that we realize that there while we use the same theological terminology such as “God”, “Jesus Christ”, “Exaltation” and etc., there is a vastly different semantical meaning between the LDS and the Evangelicals on these important terms. For example, when LDS use the term “salvation” there is not a one to one correspondence with what we believe and what the LDS believe.
For example, when LDS use the term “salvation” there is not a one to one correspondence with what we believe and what the LDS believe. Another vastly important issue that Evangelicals and LDS need to know about their theological differences, that they are not one and the same and there are only three possibilities that we can conclude about the differences between the LDS and Evangelical Christianity and they are as follows:
1) LDS theology is true and all other options are untrue.
2) Evangelical theology is true and all options are untrue.
3) Evangelical theology and LDS theology are both equally erroneous and another option is true.
The logical law of non contradiction conclusively demonstrates that two mutually exclusive theological propositions cannot simultaneously true in the same way at the same time. Therefore, when Evangelicals and LDS speak to one another, it is of paramount importance we keep a logically coherent understanding of the nature of truth to be able to proceed to any degree of certainty in these discussions. I want to tell you I love you all and I would like to discuss these things with you in the future my LDS friends.
Sincerely in Jesus Christ,
Lee Edward “Ed” Enochs
Conservatives for California
Ed also had this to say:
“I think there are some things that we Evangelicals and you LDS can agree on in the areas of morality, civic duty and the traditional family unit. There is no question that many LDS families are hard working and love one another very deeply. There is no question that the LDS love their country and see service in the armed forces as a sacred duty. I commend the LDS faith for their hard work and dedication towards a better America and the preservation of the traditional family unit.
President Hinckley’s speech against pornography at the general conference this year was excellent and I fully concur with him on this terrible vice. I want to say that the vast majority of Mormons that I know are very ethical and nice people. I love you all so very much! I have a lot of disagreements with you on some major theological issues such as the reliability of Joseph Smith, the BOM, God, Salvation, eternal progression and etc, but as far as being a nice and loving people, you guys can’t be topped!”
Please be respectful and courteous in your comments. I must admit, I had been hoping that Mr. Enochs spent more time discussing our similarities rather than our differences, but perhaps our failure to do so is in itself instructive.