This is the second post in a 3-part series from guest author Adam J. Powell, a PhD student at Durham University. His multidisciplinary work analyses the role of opposition in the development of identity and soteriological beliefs among second-century Christians and early Mormons. The first part of this series can be found here.
For the sake of brevity, only a small number of specific LDS thinkers will appear in the following critique. As noted previously, the paradoxical nature of Mormon faith is exhibited by the Saints’ self-definition as a ‘peculiar people’. The confusion arises when various religious representatives, whether church-sanctioned or informally acknowledged, attempt to draw significant parallels between the beliefs and behaviours of Latter-day Saints and those of mainstream Christians. These ‘touch points’ are most often emphasized by church apologists and academics with an apologetic agenda.