Columns Jana Riess: Flunking Sainthood Opinion

Undoing the culture of Mormon judgmentalism—Or, I am not a “tare”

A wheat field in Oregon in July 2013. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons/Ian Sane

It came up in church a few weeks ago—that dreaded “wheat and tares” analogy. I’ve been hearing it a fair amount lately.

“It’s the wheat and the tares,” the righteous will sigh, sadly shaking their heads.

Sometimes they are talking about the unfortunate way Tares aren’t getting on board with something top-ranking church leaders have emphasized. Maybe the Tares aren’t doubling down on using the full name of the institution, or they disagree with the Church’s teachings on sexuality and gender roles.

Or sometimes the righteous are lamenting the loss of more of our young people, who are leaving the fold at a higher rate than their parents and grandparents did.

Whatever the Tares’ particular failings in the eyes of the Wheaties, one refrain feels constant:

Those people are expendable.

Those people are weeds.

The church will be better off without those people.

I wonder how many Mormons who fall back on wheat-and-tares thinking remember much about the tares in Jesus’ parable in Matthew 13.

Three things stand out to me.

First, the tares, or weeds, are sown by an “enemy” after the good sower (presumably—spoiler alert!—God) has already planted the wheat in the fields. So right from the beginning, the tares are quisling plants, traitors so embedded with the wheat that they are indistinguishable from it until the day of harvest.

Second, when the harvest comes, the tares are destroyed without a second thought. Burned to a crisp while the wheat is safely gathered into the barn.

Third, it’s the Master who decides when that happens, and no one else. Some “helpful” individuals earlier in the story volunteer to go out into the fields right after the Great Tare Infiltration and uproot the unwanted elements, but the Master instructs them to cool their jets. Only time will tell which plants are really weeds; some may be wheat yet.

Mormons who fall back on the “wheat and tares” analogy seem to me to do so reflexively, trying to find a theological narrative that will comfort and reassure them. That’s a natural human reaction to stress or change. I don’t fault them for it, but I would ask them to think twice about how they throw that language around.

They think we are already living at the end of the story, so that it’s safe to sort other people into camps: wheat and tares, sheep and goats, saved and damned.

I don’t think we’re anywhere close to the end of the story. What’s more, the story itself is pretty darn clear that even if we were, it’s the Master’s job to do the sorting, not ours.

To that point, it might be better if Mormons adopted modern language for this parable, like the NRSV uses. In that translation, it’s “the wheat and the weeds,” which I like because the terminology itself keeps us guessing right up until the final consonants. We don’t know, upon hearing the “weee” opening sound of either word, whether we’re going to land on wheat or weed.

It could go either way. Which is as it should be.

I’ve been encouraged that, even as I hear the “wheat and tares” analogy coming up in unsettling ways among Mormons, the church’s own official messaging has lately been emphasizing the importance of not judging.

Check out this new video from the Mormon Channel about what happened to one family when the father lost his testimony of the gospel.

And then there’s the decreasing stigma faced by “early return missionaries,” as discussed in today’s Deseret News article “Called to serve, not called to suffer.” The article interviews a number of missionaries who, mostly for reasons of mental health, terminated their service before they originally intended.

The article includes a helpful infographic about the kinds of things ward members could say (“Welcome home,” “I’m here if you want to talk about it”)—and another one about the remarks that are not going to help (“What did you do?” and “When are you going back out” to the mission field?).

The official messaging’s changes in emphasis give me hope. How Mormons talk to—or about—people whose spiritual journey has taken them in another direction isn’t just an academic question. It has real-world consequences. I’m mindful of the fact that in the Next Mormons Survey, “I felt judged or misunderstood” tied for first place among Millennials’ reasons for leaving the LDS Church.

So let’s leave the judging to the Master. We may yet be surprised just who turns out to be wheat.

 


Related posts on judgmentalism in Mormon culture:

About the author

Jana Riess

Senior columnist Jana Riess is the author of many books, including "The Prayer Wheel" (Random House/Convergent, 2018) and "The Next Mormons: How Millennials Are Changing the LDS Church" (Oxford University Press, 2019). She has a PhD in American religious history from Columbia University.

73 Comments

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  • If in fact the self-identified Wheats are going to be spending eternity in Heaven, spending eternity with the Tares looks real good. Does God Herself really want to spend eternity surrounded by sanctimonious, self-satisfied Wheats?

  • I always get concerned when a group of people are judged for being judgmental. A bit contradictory in my mind. In any event, prophets and apostles often seem to be judged in the opinion columns, including this one, as do those Church members who accept and promulgate their teachings. Some people are too quick to judge. Some call names because they don’t have anything else to fall back on. Many people use their own standard or worldly ideas to judge—in and out of the Church—rather than true standards. We all are confronted by it. The truth is that final judgments are God’s. But in the meantime we are to judge right from wrong using the standards of divine law given us by God through His prophets, both ancient and modern. We are commanded to judge with righteous judgments—actions and behaviors more than people. The point of the Church is to help those of us in the tares category, where I am often inclined to be, to become wheat as soon as possible—before that final harvest at the end.

  • It’s just a shame that at the end of the day if God truly does separate the “wheat” from the “tares”, Mormons no matter how good of people, will have wasted their time doing so much busy work for what is essentially a real estate company. Jesus has nothing to do with LDS Inc.

  • But then, too, it is also possible to talk about different viewpoints and why people may hold different views without accusing anyone of lacking in judgment or good will. Though it is hard to talk at all with humans who think they are wheat.

  • Oh Jana, so, you’ve written a book that’s already out of date because of its title. Big deal. Just let it go and accept that it wasn’t meant to be.

    # The fact is that the more you push the title of the book so as to boost sales, the further you stray from the prophet’s counsel.

    Yes, you’re going to get sodomites and antichrists on these forums praising you for glowingly representing their filth but, that won’t undo the feeling of knowing you are deliberately disobeying the Lord’s prophet.

    Hmm, but then again maybe if you continue to try to sit on the fence as you are, maybe you will learn something from impaling yourself?

  • I’ve never read the parable of the talents? Surely you jest. Are you aware that the LDS Church only puts about .5% of it’s annual revenue (aka tithing, donations etc) toward humanitarian and charitable causes?

    It’s an investment firm financially benefiting a little over 100 old men. Period.

  • it doesn’t matter what percentage of LDS tithe goes to meet your demands, what matters is what you’re doing with your money- are you helping others with your cash or is it that you’re just another socialist loser suffering from weltschmerz?

  • Your brain has no more intelligence than a rat in a cage and your soul is dead from hypocrisy.

    Despite all your manufactured rage, you’re still just a rat in a cage.

  • And yet it is you that believes that a book was written by a man putting his head in a hat and reading it off a glowing stone. And that same man used papyri, the Book of Breathings, found with an Egyptian mummy, to create yet another fraud.

    I am demonstrably smarter than you, fool. It is easier to fool a man than it is to convince one that he has been fooled. Keep drinking the koolaid, pal.

  • If you have brains and I don’t, why on earth are you debating with me?

    # Seems to me like you’re desperately trying to prove how clever you are.

    Quickly, obama is praising gay sex on cnn- if you hurry you can hear and then repeat whatever they tell you to!

  • You’re right. It DOES matter what you’re doing with your money and the Mormon church enriches itself with luxurious office buildings, temples and land. Helping others is FAR from their financial priority no matter how hard you try to deflect. Jesus would come in and flip all of your money changing tables in your exquisite temples.

  • I’m not “debating” you anymore than I would play chess with a pigeon. It is pointless. You’re either a victim of the cult or a purveyor of its dwindling influence. What you believe is a sign of the Second Coming is no more than thousands of Mormons leaving the church because they discover they’ve been lied to. There’s a reason the vast majority of your converts come from a VERY uneducated population.

  • And I voted for Trump, FWIW, but I’m not a bigot against those with immutable characteristics the way you are. But perhaps your ignorant douchiness is as immutable as your eye color.

  • I’m the treasurer for two non-profits that I actively donate to and work for without pay, if that’s what you’re asking. And something we do that LDS Inc doesn’t is post our financials for inspection ANYTIME. It should bother you that the Mormon church HIDES it from public inspection, like Scientology. Red flags EVERYWHERE.

  • Yet you’ve replied twice so it can’t be “pointless” to you as you claim.

    The strange thing about you is that I know scientology is a cult but I don’t bother going to scientology web boards to disprove it.

    Why you need to repeatedly come to this particular board is rather odd, or can’t you see that in what you write?

  • My family sees themselves as wheat to the point they have become a selfish, bitter, insular, fearful echo chamber that has to protect against “Those People”–even when Those People includes their own children. These do not seem like the fruits of the spirit to me. A weed is any plant that isn’t wanted where it is- including some very beautiful wild flowers and I’m blooming better than ever now that I’m not being smothered by the wheat anymore. 🙂

  • Nah, I don’t want to to read what you link to as it will be total crap, for that is your stock and trade.

  • The secret is is that it’s not for you. It’s for any open minded LDS person reading our exchange, in an attempt to disprove me, may decide to read for themselves the extent of deception that the LDS Church STILL engages in. The disinfecting sunshine of the internet takes care of the rest.

  • In order to determine whether or not you are a wheat, you need to have criterion as to what “wheat” signifies:

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9781845695637500139?via%3Dihub

    Where the difficulty arises is where a weed scraps the definition of “wheat”, and the weed says the definition was a mere cultural construct, and it believes with all its heart it is wheat, and that in the future weeds will be wheat.

    It is Humpty Dumpty declaring that words means what he means, nothing more or less.

  • “in an attempt to disprove me”.

    Strange that you don’t pursue the scientologists like you pursue saints. Is that because saints are easier targets and you are a weakling?

  • Of course the Scripture reference does not communicate that a tare is any plant that isn’t wanted where it is including some very beautiful wild flowers.

    That’s stretching the metaphor to the breaking point.

    One apparent point is that the wheat is those who hear “if you love me you will keep my commandments”.

    The other seems to be “if you don’t keep my commandments it will not turn out well for you”.

    Hover on your upvotes. You’re getting endorsed by people who don’t believe there are any commandments beyond doing as they wish.

    On the plus side you’ve discovered that if you’re not going to accept there are commandments beyond doing what you wish, if you’re going to persist in “disagree(ing) with the Church’s teachings on sexuality and gender roles” as the author does ad infinitum despite being rebuffed and informed over and over that particular dog won’t hunt, the solution is to remove yourself.

    That is pretty much the case with everyone in a teaching church be it The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint, the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention. If you don’t like the rules, don’t play the game.

  • Oh, I agree that I’m rewriting the metaphor, because the *cultural* interpretation that is the entire point of the article? It really does not bear the fruits of the spirit as outlined in Galatians 5:22-23. I refuse to have that particular cultural interpretation applied to me, because it is, well, terribly judgemental. You have already made several negative judgements about me and the people who have upvoted me (bordering on thinly veiled ad hominem), even though you know NOTHING about me, based on the fact that I do not view this parable the same way that you do.

    I think Penn Jillette summed up the “doing as they wish” thing better than I ever could. “The question I get asked by religious people all the time is, without God, what’s to stop me from raping all I want? And my answer is: I do rape all I want. And the amount I want is zero. And I do murder all I want, and the amount I want is zero. The fact that these people think that if they didn’t have this person watching over them that they would go on killing, raping rampages is the most self-damning thing I can imagine.”

    You do not have to have religion to be a good, just, and even righteous person. Believe it or not, you can be a really good person just because it’s the right thing to do without any expectation of heaven or fear of hell. And believe it or not, some of the most religious people can be terribly wicked (i.e. Catholic priest sex abuse? Islamic extremists?) So I think perhaps being called a Tare when there has been no Second Coming/Harvest yet is a bit premature, don’t you?

    And I stopped playing the church’s game long ago. Doesn’t mean the church left me alone, though. Continued unwanted contacts and my own family turned against me for believing differently when supposedly this is a family values church… Well, I’d LIKE to be left alone but it’s just not going to happen. Oh well. C’est la vie.

  • That “the *cultural* interpretation that is the entire point of the” author is probably accurate.

    As a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints she apparently did not realize that it was a teaching church, not the Episcopal Church, and that anything did NOT go. There is core belief system and a core standard of behavior.

    And now she’s chewing about it on-line and in her writings.

    I have made zero negative judgements about you. I have long read the people who have upvoted you, and debated with some of them, so I know from whence I speak.

    I have no problem that you do not view this parable the same way that I do, but I point out that is NOT the question. The question is how does The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints view the parable?

    And it will not change.

    So you correctly identified the proper course of action: acceptance or departure.

    No, all have not won and all must be given prizes.

    No, if you’re to going to play baseball, you can’t substitute a football or a basketball or rewrite the rules of the game so to suit you.

    So you left.

    So there is no problem, eh?

  • For various reasons RNS has attracted folks whose major interest is in attacking and/or debunking religion in general and teaching religions in particular. Thus:

    “There’s a reason the vast majority of your converts come from a VERY uneducated population.”

    It does not help that some of RNS authors, like Ms. Riess, are having issues with their own religion and an inability to accept its teaching role, or like Mark Silk have an axe to grind with religion in general.

    I find blocking the offenders to be fairly effective.

  • Alex, you really come off as a wingnut. Your comments are mean, nasty, utterly unChristlike, and then you turn around and chastise others for “disobeying the Lord’s prophet.” Like many of your type, you have no sense of irony.

  • Carl Sagan, “One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

  • Thereby turning the forum into a circle jerk of self-congratulatory amen chorusers who reinforce each other’s view unaided by reason or rationality. Truly you embrace Lucifer’s philosopy from Milton’s Paradise Lost, “Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven.”

  • Kindred spirit hear–maybe. Philosophically more libertarian than big-government conservative which seems to be most “conservatives” today. Voted for The Donald, and then subsequently have been in various stages of dismay and confoundment that I voted for a person whose core principles are self-aggrandizement and sowing chaos like another person sheds skin cells. But I thought the alternative was even worse.

  • One apparent point is that the wheat is those who hear “if you love me you will keep my commandments”. The other seems to be “if you don’t keep my commandments it will not turn out well for you”.

    Nice indictment of your supreme being. Plenty of human parents show more love than that. If in fact you believe in a biblical God, you believe in a narcissistic and abusive being. I’m always struck by how a “loving” Saviour is going to scorch the earth at his second coming. No irony there. Nope, not worthy of my worship.

  • It is hardly indictment of a supreme being.

    Plenty of human parents really really suck, and let their children get away with murder, so that they grow up thinking that justice is mean, and they write things like “If in fact you believe in a biblical God, you believe in a narcissistic and abusive being.” because they live in a fantasy world where only Father Christmas meets their criterion for a deity.

    If in fact there is a God, who created all things and keeps them in existence, it is hardly narcissistic for it to expect you to pay some attention to what you’re told.

    And, of course, the real question is not about whether it is worthy of your worship.

    The real question is whether there is in fact a deity, and if so how lucky you feel about flipping it the bird.

  • If you’re familiar with “a circle jerk of self-congratulatory amen chorusers who reinforce each other’s view unaided by reason or rationality”, you obviously participate in discussions at AlterNet, JoeMyGod, SecularHumanist, and the other anti-belief discussion groups for cultists of scientism and doubt.

  • Yes. I voted against Hillary Clinton and fully expected Trump to be impeached for something. Two foul birds with one stone.

  • I grew up a “saint”, born in the covenant, served a full mission, temple marriage, in bishopric…all of it. I know church tactics inside and out. It is BECAUSE the church taught me to be honest with my fellow man that I discovered they’ve lied. Second anointing, Smith’s polygamy and polyandry, saint dishonesty and violence against “gentiles” in Missouri and Utah, the BOA fraud…I could go on.

    It should be obvious now why I don’t “pursue” Scientologists. It’s the same reason you limit yourself to LDS Church “approved” materials. I read all of that and the things they try to discredit and tear down.

    But fraud is fraud, no matter how much lipstick you try to put on that pig.

  • This is why BYU cannot find itself in respected journals for archeology, for example. Outside their echo chamber of fellow believers, the BOM is as historical as the writings of JK Rowling. This has been true for so long that the church has given up on calling it an actual historic record (see BOM essay).

    Living a comforting lie, for some, is what they’d prefer to do. But anyone objectively looking at the scholarly material passed around within FAIR, for example, recognizes it for the gaslighting that it is.

  • BYU is not in your market, doesn’t care what you think, isn’t competing to get into journals you respect.

    Trolling here is simply going to result in your getting ridicule and scorn heaped on you, which you deserve.

    Of course your Disqus comments on the SaltLakeCityTribune seem to indicate you rather enjoy that.

  • Mark, some say that religion is a belief, whereas atheism is a conclusion. In fact, I’m not an atheist unless I adhere to that definition. If you define atheism to mean a firm position threre is no god, I’m not an atheist. To me, declaring absolutely there is no divinity is as hubristic as it is to declare there is a deity, that he wrote the book of rules you happen to consider authoritative, and that all others must obey those rules or be punished. The existence of the divine can neither be proven or disproven. It’s a logical construct.

    Why am I even here? The reason I take an interest in this blog is because I was a Mormon for several decades before voluntarily resigning. I now watch the organization with morbid fascination and dismay that I once thought as those people do. I also have some small sympathy for those struggling to be “worthy” as defined by this fraudulent organization.

  • Actually, never heard of them. If they are truly condescending and self-righteous in their condemnation of believers, I’ll pass on the experience. I’m just for rationality. The way I see it, I don’t have a dog in this fight to defend to the bitter end. I base my views on the best available evidence. That objective view allows me to call out the Abrahamic god as a jerk if we are really to believe he did what the bible says he did. I’m no more friend of Allah. The thought some divine being rewarding suicidists who kill and maim others on their way out, sowing misery at ever stip, with a sexist misogynistic heavenly existence is utterly repulsive. Our increasing understanding of relativity allows for an almost infinite number of parallel universes/dimensions. Who am I to say something therein might not be divine in some way? I just mostly reject that the world’s religions have it correct.

  • Religion is: a belief, a bet, the outcome of a logical process, a gift.

    As an agnostic you’re in a distinct minority, and that’s fine, as long you don’t engage in trolling people who disagree with you.

    Since this is Religion News Service, it seems likelier than not you’ve come to engage trolling people who disagree with you.

    Bon voyage.

  • Mark, belief is no excuse for ignorance. I’ve been commenting on Jana’s blog for a very long time. And if you don’t like strong pushback, don’t be nasty in the defense of your loving god. Try setting a good example.

  • If I hadn’t already stopped attending a decade ago, that old, overused analogy would “tare” it.

  • I realize you’re in the middle of an argument. But I’d like to point out your inference that BYU isn’t interested in scholarly journals is astoundingly disingenuous and inaccurate. Do you even realize the implications of what you just argued? I’ll wager plenty of academics at BYU would differ with your assertion.

    As a long time member and also observer, it’s apparent to me the Church has long since shed its “peculiar people” ethic and has if nothing else striven to be seen as mainstream and wholesome as possible. I absolutely guarantee if a shred of physical evidence supporting the BOM could pass peer review, the church would be trumpeting it everywhere. So when Dr. Ritner debunks just about everything having to do with the Book of Abraham, the church is like the kid walking home saying, “I didn’t really wanna play in your stupid ballgame anyway.”

    I mean think about it. The need for validation and legitemacy is in your canonized scripture. See Joseph Smith History verse 64, “I went to the city of New York, and presented the characters which had been translated, with the translation thereof, to Professor Charles Anthon, a gentleman celebrated for his literary attainments. Professor Anthon stated that the translation was correct, more so than any he had before seen translated from the Egyptian. I then showed him those which were not yet translated, and he said that they were Egyptian, Chaldaic, Assyriac, and Arabic; and he said they were true characters. He gave me a certificate, certifying to the people of Palmyra that they were true characters, and that the translation of such of them as had been translated was also correct…”

    If the church is so above the need for outside acceptance, why bother putting that account (which appears to be utter bull$hit by the way) in its scriptures?

  • Have a nice day.

    I am sure there is an audience for your sort of pedantic sniping at people you do not agree with.

    I, however, am not it.

  • Meh, I give it back.

    Why was it alright for Joseph Smith to shoot back in Liberty Jail but it’s not alright for us to shoot back? If an ignorant fool says “call me stupid” then hey, I’ll call him stupid.

    Bigger question is *why doesn’t Jana block those who hate the church?* On RNS there’s a catholic author who blocks those that rip into catholics yet Jana seems to want all who detest the LDS church… and it seems that sales of her book defines the reason for that.

  • “It is hardly indictment of a supreme being.” You have low standards.

    “If in fact there is a God, who created all things and keeps them in existence, it is hardly narcissistic for it to expect you to pay some attention to what you’re told.”

    That’s kind of a big if, since there is little evidence. Your argument for God is like Sagan’s analogy of the dragon in the garage. Let’s go see it. It’s invisible. Spread flour to detect its tracks. It floats. Use infrared to detect its invisible flame. The flame is heatless. God intercedes in trivial matters while utterly unmoved by the prayers of six million Jews. God heard, he just answered them in his own way. The goal posts are always moving.

    “The real question is whether there is in fact a deity, and if so how lucky you feel about flipping it the bird.”

    Aannd we get to where many believers go when they can’t come up with a counter-argument, which is, the threat and the “Christlike” hope that I will receive my divine come-uppance from a loving God. I think Bertrand Russell had it right. If there ends up being a divine being in spite of all the logical fallacies and assorted problems, he will simpy say, “I’m terribly sorry, but you didn’t give us enough evidence.”

  • Unfortunately, you don’t the authority to dismiss me. And Jana has seen my posts long enough I think to know me a bit. I have no doubt she and i could have a wonderful and cordial conversation. Her, with Postum, and me, with coffee. Or scotch. What is so galling is that I know your playbook. I was once an ardent apologist. Until I had my Ralphie with his Little Orphan Annie secret decoder ring moment with the church.

    You seem to have a fixation on the word troll. You use it a lot. Except in your world a troll is anybody who doesn’t agree with you. But you also seem to think it your prerogative to come onto this blog, sniff at the heretics, and chastize them for their doctrinal impurity with no risk. You are a cowardly internet Torquemada. That kind of behavior just brings out the debater in me.

  • No. Thank you for inadvertently conceding you can’t handle the heat. And for reverting to excommunication because you can’t win the argument. But you also show something else I find common amongst apologists, an utter lack of humor and grace. See, I can tell you’re a smart person. You write well. You can think. But you’re defending the indefensible. Think Baghdad Bob. It’s always going to be tough when facts, evidence, and logic are against you.

    Time for me to go home, cuddle with my sweetheart, and have a dram of 12-year scotch.

  • This nonsensical comparison you’ve made stands on its own as an indictment on your ability to use rational thought.

  • For gardeners your definition of a weed is right on! A weed is simply something that grows where it isn’t wanted. Wheat in a corn field is a weed!

    I am glad you left the wheat field where you weren’t wanted and have found a place where you are welcomed!

  • So, you do read it then. That explains much- the hatred that festers within you is born of your own selfishness.

    Like I asked before, how come you don’t hate on scientology or the JW’S ?

  • I appreciate your willingness to continue to engage me. It allows me to clearly demonstrate the lengths to which a “true believer” will go in order to maintain those beliefs.

    To answer both questions, A) by your logic, a prosecuting attorney presents pornography before the jury if what you define as such is simply the other side of the story and B) I’ve already explained to you why I don’t focus on either of those two groups. Forty years of my life in Mormonism from which I can credibly speak.

    Anything else?

  • Alex, (shaking my head in wonder), do you even examine your logic? Let’s pull the threads apart.

    To summarize, I say your comments in internet discussions are unChristlike.

    Your response is A) not to deny my accusation, but B) to justify your actions by pointing out Joseph Smith shot at his attackers. (BTW, I’ve been to Carthage Jail and listened to the presentation)

    1. Who do you esteem more, Christ or Joseph Smith? Because you use Smith as your role model instead of Christ. How did Christ act when he was presented to the San Hedrin prior to his crucifixion? They mocked him, some spat on him, some struck him. Keeping in mind, you’ve only been mocked. And unlike Christ’s situation, justifiably so. When the Roman soldiers taunted him on the cross, how did Christ respond? Do you know? Do you care? (hint: he did not revile the revilers.)

    2. Your analogy to Joseph Smith’s actions during the mob attack is bad. You aren’t fighting for your life. The better analogy is the one already mentioned regarding Christ before his persecutors.

    Jana can chime in about why she does or does not allow various posts. I think she’s read enough of my posts that she understands something about me. I rarely personally attack anybody. But ideas and beliefs are open season. There is no right for an idea to exist except on its own merits. Furthermore, this is Religion News Service. I see nothing in that moniker that suggests nonbelievers or skeptics can’t have a voice. Moreover, there’s nothing in your online conduct that suggests you are a serious devotee of Jesus.

    But what really takes me back, is your audacity to come into HER post, comment on HER post, criticize HER in very nasty terms for your perception of her lack of doctrinal purity, and THEN complain you can’t do it unmolested.

    So, can you actually respond to my assertions with substance, as in, “no, my analogy is accurate because __________”, or “I’m justified in using Joseph Smith’s actions rather than those of Jesus because __________.” Because anything other than doing so is deflection, and by definition a losing argument.

  • Yeah, I’m aware of all that. Like I said to someone else, I’m no respecter of persons.

    Now you say I’m ‘not fighting for my life’ but, inch by inch we lose ground daily to people who knowingly target Latter day Saints as we’re easy targets, and I’m getting sick of it- I’ve drawn my line while you clearly haven’t.

    You may very well have so much more tolerance for persecution than I do, which might be good for you or conversely, it might well see you backed into a corner that is created wholly by your own in-action?

    Hmm, and then you say its ‘audacious’ of me to come here and knock Jana’s views. All the while she knowingly goes about weaving an ever-sickening agenda.

    Let me tell you something about publishing in 2018- commercial publishers don’t want to print anything good about the church. What commercial publishers want is that which praises any perversion that is lgbt. Jana is giving the world what they want but don’t even try to suggest that she is giving Christ what he wants by publishing that work.

    Jana is making her bed now or, more precisely, she’s sowing now so as to reap later.

    Jana loves the filthy perv’s who attack the church and she clearly shows this by encouraging them to use her Flunking Sainthood posts. Other RNS writers have banned those who attack their faith but Jana revels in the sick and perverted.

    Would I care if Jana banned me? No, because she’d prove my point whilst she allows any and all who attack the church- and that will include you Danny boy as you idly watch Jana’s course of destruction, nodding in approval.

  • First of all you’re not a prosecuting attorney, nor a member of a jury. You’re also not the state censor or a ratings review board member.

    *What you are is a porn watching perv though.*

    If you weren’t a porn watcher you would have boldly stated it instead of driving yourself down the dead end lane of “prosecuting attorney…” justifying.

    Secondly, your ’40 years of Mormonism’ didn’t give you a license to publicly attack Latter-day Saint beliefs without being called out for your mistakes.

    yawning at your dreary posts.

  • I think most people familiar with the theology of the Church realize that since the tares are hewn down and cast into the fire (the Biblical representation of hell) they clearly represent the Sons of Perdition, a TINY percentage of the people who’ve lived or will live on earth. So none of us (with that small exception) are tares. We are all wheat!

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