Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Blog Editing Policy 01

Well, it had to happen eventually so here is my policy on posting comments to this blog. Its not that many people are rude but enough come along who think this is their playground and their ball and insist on playing it their way. I hope this isn’t restrictive in any way and that it helps us focus on issues.


This blog addresses vital issues of faith and especially scrutinises Mormonism from an Evangelical Christian and biblical perspective. Its subject matter is controversial and therefore all comments are moderated before being posted. That said it is always encouraging when people post lively comments that challenge preconceptions, bring new insights and move the discussion along. To keep order and encourage discussion I would appreciate people keeping to the following rules:

Please, let’s be civilised and avoid personal attacks or inappropriate personal comments. Contributions can be robust and challenging but should be informative and constructive. Whatever our faith position most contributors at least consider themselves “Christian” and should behave accordingly. Remember, “Do as you would be done by.”

Sometimes in robust discussion offense is taken when none is offered. Let’s be grown up about this and not hide behind feigned expressions of hurt. George Orwell wrote, “Liberty is the right to tell others what they don’t want to hear.” There is no such thing as the right to not be offended.

Please try to stick to the subject under discussion in any given post. By all means introduce what might be appropriate and helpful related issues but keep these relevant. If you must follow a tangent somewhere not germane to the post why not suggest it as a separate discussion?

In discussion quotes are appropriate within reason but I don’t tolerate wholesale cut-and-paste jobs. It is just lazy to expect others to do your thinking for you. I solicit your views, not the views of your leaders, or those whose books/sermons/blogs/web sites you admire. Links to outside sites will be allowed though carefully monitored and short messages like, “nice blog”, accompanied by links designed to do no more than advertise another blog/website will not be posted. (Comments with Chinese characters NEVER get through)

I prefer contributors not remain anonymous, although I understand why some would prefer that and will not have a hard and fast rule about this. I like to know who I am talking to however and this doesn’t seem unreasonable since anyone can know who I am and, anyway, what have you got to hide? This doesn’t mean your comments will not be posted but they will be considered carefully.

Finally, if you’re a Mormon, in whatever language you couch it, you believe my church to be apostate since the earliest days, those who profess membership corrupt and far from God and those who lead it blind leaders of the blind. (JSH 1:19) To you this is fair comment and I accept your right to express your faith in those terms so relax and say what’s on your mind. After all, without a message of apostasy and restoration what do Mormons have to talk about?

By the same token, I and other Christians regard Mormonism to be a counterfeit of the true Christian faith, a dangerous deception, a cult and that too is fair comment since these terms accurately describe our honestly held view on Mormonism. After all, as apologists for our faith, what else are we to do but “contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the Saints”? (Jude 3) So, let’s get over ourselves and actually talk about issues. Who knows, maybe we will all learn something along the journey.


  1. Mike

    Because I see that you have put significant time, effort and thought into this blog, I have a question. I know that you have heard this one before and I realize that you must have a biblically-based answer, but that is not what I am asking. Instead, I am asking for an answer in terms of psychological factors or temporal motivations. So here goes:

    Why is it that those who leave the Church cannot then leave the Church alone?


  2. Thank you Murdock for recognising the effort that goes into producing this blog. You are perfectly right of course when you write that I have heard this question before. I am almost tempted to call it a "hoary old chestnut" it is so familiar.

    It is, as you probably know, a question that was coined by Neal A Maxwell in a talk entitled Remember How Merciful the Lord Hath Been. Typically, he characterises such people as myself as those who "use their intellectual reservations to cover their behavioural lapses". They "won't leave the church alone", we are meant to infer, because it is only in faulting the Mormon church that they can justify themselves. As irrelevant and pathetic a piece of apologetic as I have ever come across.

    Perhaps you are unfamiliar with the context and therefore don't intend to use it in this way. However, Maxwell does and it has been a handy tool ever since for Mormons to avoid the real issues by blaming people like me for being malcontents and recidivist. It would be nice once in a while to come across a Mormon prepared to stop playing the injured party and actually engage in honest, reasoned discussion. After all, isn't that what the Bible encourages? (Jude 3)

    I do not fall into that all-too-convenient category of unrepentant sinner who bites the hand that would feed him. I am, rather, a very repentant sinner who has joined the ranks of those who have put their full trust in the gospel of Jesus Christ as it has come down to us in his word, the Bible.

    Why don't I leave the Mormon Church alone? I think that is the wrong question. A better one would be how on earth should a Christian respond when Mormons visit his neighbours telling them that his church and what he believes are corrupt (JSH 1:19) and that the Mormon Curch is "the only true church on the earth"?

    That is the position in which I find myself and I use my experience and what little talent I have to convey to people what I see as the threat of Mormonism. Much the same way, come to think of it, as Mormons go around warning people about the dangers of following apostate Christian leaders. Given this conveniently clear counterbalance of purpose and intent, so to speak, I am at a loss to understand why you have to ask.

    But to make it perfectly clear, I am not interested so much in the Mormon Church as I am in contending for my church and for the souls that should be in my church and not in yours. If you say my church is aposate I call you on it; if you say it is corrupt I will call you on that too and if you say Mormonism is "restored Christianity" I will certainly call you on that. Is this so very puzling?