Jan 14, 2011

Glenn Beck and Mormon Eschatology

T. A. McMahonBy T. A. McMahon
The Berean Call

Q: I'm concerned that my friends who are committed Bible-believing Christians seem to be smitten with Glenn Beck. Other than the problematic fact that he is a convert to Mormonism (which should raise red flags about his wisdom), many are seeing him as someone who will lead this country back to its Christian roots. Don't Mormons have a kingdom eschatology, and do you see Beck's influence as part of the "temporal delusion" you've been writing about?

A: There is no doubt that Glenn Beck's charisma, candor, cutting humor, and profession of "faith" have contributed to his becoming an icon among conservatives and a major galvanizing force for Christians and patriots of all persuasions who are concerned about the direction and future of our nation. He appears to be well-informed on many issues of critical concern to political conservatives and Christians alike, and his forthright "fireside chat" teaching style is entertaining, educational, and persuasive.

For example, Beck warns of conditions that could lead to economic collapse in the United States and exposes the globalist, socialist agenda of "progressives" like billionaire George Soros, the "philanthropist" founder of Open Society Foundations. Beck, along with a few evangelical whistleblowers, has also exposed Obama's long-time friend and spiritual advisor, Sojourners founder Jim Wallis, as a leftist "Christian," who receives funds from anti-American sources including George Soros. It is therefore quite understandable why patriots and conservatives, including many Christians, are enamored with someone whom they feel could champion their cause.

Beck's enthusiastic conversion to Mormonism over a decade ago has made him a highly visible "evangelist" for the cult founded by Joseph Smith in the early 1800s. [1] As one writer noted,

"Beck, who was raised Catholic in Washington state, has produced, with the help of Mormon Church-owned Deseret Book Company, the DVD An Unlikely Mormon: The Conversion Story of Glenn Beck (2008); Mormon fan sites invite visitors to learn more about Beck's beliefs by clicking through to the official Web site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints....It is likely that Beck owes his brand of Founding Father-worship to Mormonism, where reverence for the founders and the United States Constitution as divinely inspired are often declared elements of orthodox belief. Mormon Church President Wilford Woodruff (1807-1898) declared that George Washington and the signers of the Declaration of Independence appeared to him in the Mormon Temple in St. George, Utah, in 1877, and requested that he perform Mormon temple ordinances on their behalf." [2]
Mormons espouse a "last days" view that has the "Kingdom of God" established on this earth, with its headquarters in Independence, Missouri. Latter-Day Saints' prophets declared that the U.S. Constitution would come under attack and be severely weakened, yet it will be restored by true followers of the Mormon faith. Their tenth article of faith states:
"We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent...."
Brigham Young stated:
"When the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for the 'Mormon' Elders to save it from utter destruction; and they will step forth and do it." [3]
Mormon "Apostle" Bruce R. McConkie wrote,
"With the restoration of the gospel and the setting up of the ecclesiastical Kingdom of God, the restoration of the true government of God commenced. Through this church and Kingdom, a framework has been built through which the full government of God will eventually operate.... The present ecclesiastical kingdom will be expanded into a political kingdom also, and then both civil and ecclesiastical affairs will be administered through it." [4]
Although the Mormon "prophets" saw their church as ruling through the Kingdom of God, there has been a shift of late toward ecumenism. We've seen the repackaging of the LDS church as simply another "denomination" of Christianity - and many are buying it. Prominent evangelical scholars and theologians from Biola University and Fuller Seminary have been "dialoguing" with top LDS apologists for nearly a decade. This fact is alarming enough, but some leaders, such as Richard Land (president of "The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission" of the Southern Baptist Convention) have even gone so far as to call Mormonism "the fourth Abrahamic religion."

More than a quarter of a century ago, in their book The God Makers, Ed Decker and Dave Hunt saw this political/social/religious ecumenism coming:
"There is increasing evidence of a new and growing secular/religious ecumenism persuasive enough to accomplish this unprecedented and incalculably powerful coalition [of diverse groups with similar objectives]" (p. 258).
Though Glenn Beck is seen to be a voice against the thunder of socialism blaring from our capital (and making incredible inroads in our left-drifting evangelical churches), his Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, on the other hand, has a foundational doctrine of socialism. Its "United Order," which is defined as "the Lord's program for eliminating the inequalities among men," is a theocratic form of socialism in which the Church owns everything and distributes its goods for the welfare of all, something that would seem to please Soros and Wallis. [5]

[1] See "Mormon Fiction," TBC, www.thebereancall.org/node/2594, and The God Makers, offered in the resource pages.
[3] Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 2, 317.
[4] Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 338.
[5] Documentary History of the Church. Vol 7, 412-13.