“She won’t join the church because we won’t let her practice polyandry.” That’s what my husband told the Stake President at his last interview.
(See my disclaimer in Part 1 concerning the title) So, let’s discuss some of the less-acknowledged ways Mormons and evangelicals are alike. First we’ll start with things in evangelical thought which bear an unexpected resemblance to LDS thought.
(See my disclaimer about the title) There are many similarities between Mormonism and evangelical Christianity which are generally uncontested by both parties. I thought I would cover these prior to doing a post on the similarities which I suspect will be more controversial.
People are always making assertions about what heaven must contain in order for it to qualify as heaven for them, some of these assertions being more jokes than anything else. “It’s not heaven without sex.” “It wouldn’t be heaven if [insert name of favorite pet dog] isn’t there.” “If heaven doesn’t have Egg McMuffins, I don’t want to go there.”
An old adage among outsiders who study Mormonism states that determining what is and is not Mormon doctrine is a lot like trying to nail jello to a wall—except that the latter feat is entirely possible while the former remains a struggle to this day. Evangelicals who interact with Mormons often express frustration to that end. It seems that as soon as we think we’ve figured out what Mormons believe and how to respond to it, the next Mormon we meet will tell us “we don’t believe that,” “that’s not doctrine,” or “that’s just his opinion.” It would probably help if evangelicals spent more time genuinely trying to understand Mormonism and less time sizing it up for the best spot to throw a punch,1 but to some of us, the desire to understand is earnest and the frustration is genuine.