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Milt Hankins: Politics indeed makes for strange bedfellows

Oct. 25, 2012 @ 11:52 PM

Several months ago, I wrote a piece revealing some Mormon beliefs that are foreign to most of us. I thought I had said all that needed to be said; however, in the months since, I have repeatedly wondered how evangelical Christians could support a Mormon for the presidency of the United States.

I do believe that a Mormon has as much right to run for the presidency as any other qualified citizen; however, I am baffled by the number of evangelicals who are supporting Romney.

I grew up in an evangelical church and became a pastor who served American as well as Southern Baptists. I was taught in church, in seminary, and in convention conferences that Mormonism is a dangerous cult -- the commonly accepted belief concerning Mormons as long as I can remember.

It's strange to me that so many evangelicals are convinced that Romney should be the president rather than President Obama, who is a confessing, born-again believer and a member of the United Church of Christ.

Why would evangelical Christians vote for someone who believes that God lives on a planet called Kolab, and that men can become Gods, and that God is an exalted man?

How could any evangelical, African-American Christian vote for a man who was a bishop and stake president in the Mormon Church, which until 1954, believed that "Negroes" were ineligible for the Mormon priesthood. The commonly-held belief was that if they were good enough, black people could enter heaven to be slaves for white people.

Is it possible that evangelical Christians, who insist on electing people of like beliefs, can support someone whose religion teaches that "Jesus and Satan were spirit brothers?"

Learning how The Book of Mormon was "discovered" and translated, since Mormons believe this book is equal to the Bible, makes evangelicals cringe. According to the story, Joseph Smith found a "seer stone." He believed if he put the stone in his hat and placed his hat over his face, in the darkness something like a parchment would appear one character at a time -- and that's how the Book of Mormon was translated into English!

The president of the Mormon Church is revered as a living prophet, the Lord's authorized representative on earth. Mormons believe he speaks the will of the Lord, may prophesy about future events and receive revelations from God.

Smith wore a "Jupiter's Talisman" from the time he was a teenager. It supposedly guaranteed three things he wanted most in life -- power, money and women.

If you are an evangelical Christian planning to vote for Romney for president, do research concerning Mormonism.

Romney says little about his religion. If he explained his beliefs, he would lose thousands upon thousands of votes in the evangelical community.

Milt Hankins of Ashland, Ky., is a retired minister, theologian and freelance writer.

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