Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Missions / Witnessing / eVangelism' started by JRG39402, Jul 31, 2006.
What are the besy ways to witness to mormons?
First, be aware that it is more than a religion, or a choice that was made; it is a complete social system that is deeply tied to family relations in many situations. Meaning: you are born into it and within it as you grow up, and to leave it is in some cases leaving your family due to ostracizing should you leave the church.
Second, realize that they will be going to those with more "knowledge" and "answers" everytime you talk to them. This is usually their bishop, who while a missionary, was trained to have an answer to everything. For example, if you say LDS do not beleive in the trinity, the answer will be "of course we do" although they won't mention the true nature of their beleifs. The Articles of Faith aren't for members, but for non-members to appear that they are a "christian" religion.
In a nutshell, it's like witnessing to Jehovah's Witnesses (although most of them are converts of some sort), and when you use scripture, they will have supplemental "clarification" in the form of BoM, PoGP, and D&C (whereas the JW will simply say your scripture isn't valid.)
I hate to say it, but if you're here asking, it's going to be a tough row to hoe. There is soooo much to it, and even ex-Mormon's have major issues when witnessing to existing Mormons.
But, if you have any questions on anything in particular, please feel free to ask.
I guess I didn't really directly answer your question though now that I think about it... but, I would say be a witness with your friendship, caring, and genuine happiness. Mormon's (from my personal experience) have a "veneer" of happiness. If you have genuine joy, that will show through. So, just let your light shine!
give them the law - once they are humbled - give them the gospel.
speak to the conscience - not the intellect.
I've seen so many people try and witness to Mormons from both sides of the fence. What many may be overlooking, is that the law has been "interpreted" to mean something other to them their entire lives. So, what then after the humbling doesn't come? Boy, if it were only that easy.
But, if a Mormon is ready to walk away from their family, ready to lose all of their business connections established their entire lifetime, and be ostracised by the their entire LDS social circle, it might be that easy. So far though, I've found very few ready to do that. Even though I know that some have accepted Christ, with the exception of a few I could count on one hand (a couple of them being in my own household), they are "closet christians", not letting their family know of their conversions and choosing to remain "on the books" as Mormons.
I'd say your average Mormon really bears more persecution for their choice of following Christ than the standard "seekers" that people are so worried about being sensitive to, yet sometimes I am amazed at how some treat Mormons in their attempts to witness to them.
I agree with OrovilleTim. If you're just going to try and win a debate, chances are you won't. They will reject the truth.
But, if you first take the time and effort to build a relationship with a Mormon person, and earn their trust, then you just might get an opportunity to do as 1 Peter 3:15 says, "...to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear."
Amen to that!
The biggest issue when witnessing to mormons is understanding their true differences are all buried in the same terminology that we would use.
Testimony - 'your experience for conversion to mormon'
'They believe in Jesus' - they just think he is a satanic brother . . .
Trinity - made up of 3 created gods
Holy Spirit - scares them
Love on them - with the love of God. They don't have this.
But, they do have a legalistic answer for everything else. They even have an answer down to what underwear is holy.
I have some like that. No, wait...check that. Mine are holey. Never mind.
I have to side with OrvilleTim also.
If you can get them confused enough to start doubting what they believe...you may be getting somewhere with them.
But, as was mentioned, it's not just a religion for them; it's their life.
Wouldn't it be nice if some evangelical Christians saw their relationship with the Savior that way?
I would pray that we would take the relationship as serious as they do.
But they are messed up!
Why do you ask?
It is very difficult to witness to Mormons, and do it in such a way as to not turn them away from any kind of faith whatsoever. A close friend of mine was once associated with an "Ex-Mormon's for Jesus" movement, and he told me that out of every 30 Mormons who leave the church, only one will ever be likely to join a Christian congregation.
I haven't seen any figures, but I suspect that his statistic is very accurate. It is far easier to "prove" that Mormonism is wrong than it is to communicate the true gospel effectively to a Mormon, if you are simply working in the realm of logic and systematic theology. A number of years ago I worked with two Mormon missionaries over the course of about four months. We went through their six-week canned presentation and I raised so many questions we met for another ten weeks while I showed them that Mormonism and the gospel of Christ (even the so-called "fragments" of the gospel that remain in the KJV) are completely incompatable. We able went deep into Doctrine and Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price and tried to take some of the kooky ideas found in those books seriously, for the sake of discussion.
Once a Mormon realizes that he or she has been deceived, then they frequently give up on "religion" altogether, never realizing that faith in Christ is not just a set of religious beliefs and customs.
Our discussions were terminated by a church official, after one of the two missionaries had an "emergency transfer" home and was replaced by a fresh hard-core missionary, and the other seemed to be wavering. The missionaries were told to tell me they could never speak with me again and then "knock the dust from their shoes" and leave. Of course, I took the opportunity at that last brief conversation to urge the remaining missionary (who trusted me at that point) to leave that controlling cult and turn his life over to Christ so he could experience the abundant life.
This has been my experiance.
This is exactly true. They dont even want to listen to somebody talking religion. They dont want to be decieved and betrayed again.
The problem with witnessing to LDS people is that they see beliefe even thru doubts a test of their faith.
If you study and know your stuff it is really easy to cause doubt. Take for example, in the Book of Mormon Alma 7:10 it says Jesus is born in Jerusalem. Compair it to Micha 5:2 where like everybody knows Jesus is born in Bethlaham. You will get two immediate answers. "Bethlaham is a town inside of Jerusalem." The answer No its not it is 6 miles away and both towns are inside Judea. The second " It is close enough, nobody in the americas knew where Bethlaham is so God just said Jerusalem" The ansewer, Then it is an untruth, even if it is ment to be harmless it is an untruth and God can not tell an untruth. I then show how it is a false prophacy and what to do with false prophets. I then show how in Micah how carefull the prophacy was to differentiate between the two Bethlahams eventhough when the prophacy is fulfilled there is only one.
The answer, "That is.......I dont know but I will have faith in my church no matter what you say. Because I have faith."
Another doubt you can cause is how can the HS be in multiple people all around the world and be one personage. Is it an atribute of God to be one but be in multiple places at once. This will either lead into a discussion of the Trinity. OR if the Mormon is more experianced they will admit that the HS does not indwell people but just exerts influence. If they go that route then you can either talk about the body being the temple of the HS (the LDS are big believers of this) and how that does not make sence. OR even better if they already gave you the "Where does your athority question" Your answer should have been the indwelling of the HS compaired to there answer of the LDS chruch. You can talk about this for hours.
If you study hard anyway they want to change the subject I will have a topic to discuss.
You can try to give them the LAW but they are already believers of the law and will be strong on the subject. They believe they already have the gospel plus their gospel that you do not. They will agree with you when you give them the good news and say "see we agree"
I've recently encountered Mormons who are well trained in evangelical Christian witnessing techniques, and who know how to deflect questions or answer them in agreement. They know how to tell you that they've repented of their sin, believed in Christ as the redeemer and savior, as the divine son of God and that they have received salvation by his grace through faith. In fact, I had a Mormon tell me that the only difference he could see was that we believed we would go to heaven when we died, and Mormons believe that each man becomes a god of his own world, etc...
That left me wondering whether there might be a few people in the LDS church who, in their encounter with the scripture, might have actually followed it to a real born again experience not knowing they were not in sync with their church's definitions of those terms.
Usually with Mormon missionaries, I've discussed the nature of God or what it means to be saved by grace through faith alone.
One time, two young Mormon women missionaries came by and we discussed who God is, that he doesn't change, that he was never a man, etc. This led to them coming back for a 2 hr. discussion - just on who God is! I had read some helpful hints and even used a couple of verses from the Book of Mormon about there being one God. Of course, they believe there is one God of this universe (and gods of other universes). But I tried to stay on that one topic. When they left, they did take my testimony with them (which had been published). I don't know if any inroads were made, but I don't think God had them there for all that time for nothing. At least I learned from it.
Another time (where I used to live, we got Mormons and JW's coming by all the time, almost weekly, in fact), as I was talking to 2 Mormons, I said something about the Trinity. One of them agreed with me, and I said, "That's not what the LDS church teaches." He looked disconcerted and confused, and the other one looked perturbed. They soon left.
I think it's important when witnessing to Mormons (or to JW's) to stay focused on a major topic like God, who Jesus is, what salvation is, etc., and define terms acc. to the Bible.
Always start with prayer.
Prayer without evangelism is hypocracy, evangelism without prayer is stupidity.
We know that it is only God who can draw a person to Jesus, so we must give it to God first.
I like to use the law (lovingly), Ephesians 2:8-9, and present to them that their Jesus is a "different" Jesus that the Christian Jesus, and warn them (lovingly) of the consequences.
Great thread, any stories to share.
I agree with you Tommy, but one problem...they are now being told by the LDS heirarchy that we followers of the "false church" do have a different Jesus. In fact, it was only a couple of years ago that people like Gordon B Hinkley started teaching this in their annual conference.
I'm not sure if this was mentioned or not though...make sure you know who you are in Christ and what you believe before you encounter members of the LDS church, especially missionaries. They have their set arguments, and they know which buttons to push and which "holes" to find in what we believe. If you are not sure of who you are and what you believe, you may very well be the next in line to earn your temple recommend.