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Mormonism Explained: What Latter-day Saints Teach and Practice

  A concise, informative introduction to the origins, teaching, and practices of Mormonism today contrasted with historic Christianity. Sociologist Rodney Stark estimates that by 2080, Mormonism will have 267 million adherents. As a leading rival to biblical Christianity in both America and Latin America, it is a religion to be reckoned with. However, Mormons are not so much a group to be feared by Christians, says author Andrew Jackson, as a mission field to be cultivated. As a professor and a pastor in a city that boasts a large LDS community, Jackson has had not only many discussions with Mormon neighbors but with current and ex-members from every level of the church hierarchy. These conversations have led him to study this religion and write this book. His systematic, concise, and well-documented work offers an easy-reading explanation of Mormon teaching and practice today. This book is the first place readers will want to turn for a primer on Mormonisms origins and specific doctrines, and what Mormons believe and why. Andrew Jackson (MDiv, Fuller Theological Seminary) is a seminary professor and a senior associate pastor of discipleship and leadership development at a large non-denominational church in Mesa, Arizona. He has traveled to the original homelands of all the primary religions of the world, taught world religions on the college level, and is a frequent blogger and author.


  From Content: 'Much has been written about Christianity and Islam, so I hasten to inform my readers that this is not a religious treatise, nor do I class them with the globe-trotter who searched Benares brass-bazar diligently for 'a really nice image of Allah' and pronounced the dread name of Hindustan's avenging goddess like an effervescing drink. I presuppose that Christians or Moslems who read this book have got beyond the stage of calling each other pagans or kafirs, and it will have served its purpose if it brings about a friendlier feeling between the two great militant creeds whose adherents have confronted together many a stricken field. Most people have heard of the pan-Islamic movement, especially during the War. Some [12] of us have called it a political bogey and some a world-menace, but these are extremist viewsit is really the practical protest of Moslems against the exploitation of their spiritual and material resources by outsiders. Pan-Islam (as its name implies) is a movement to weld together Moslems throughout the world regardless of nationality. The ethics and ideals of Islam are more attainable to ordinary human beings than those of Christianity: whether it is better to aim high and score a partial success or aim lower and achieve is a matter of personal opinion and need not be discussed here, but one tangible fact stands outthat Islam, with its easier moral standard and frequent physical discipline of attitudes and observances connected with obligatory prayer, enters far more into the daily life of its adherents than Christianity does with us. Hence pan-Islam is more than a spiritual movement: it is a practical, working proposition which has to be reckoned with when dealing with Moslems even in secular matters. Pan-Islam is no new thingit is as old as the Hejira, and then helped to knit together Moslem Arabs against their pagan compatriots who were persecuting them. In the palmy days of the Abbaside Caliphate it was quiescent enough, and men of all creeds were welcomed at Baghdad [13] for their art, learning, or handicraft when we were massacring Jews in London as part of a coronation pageant. Medieval Moslems never fanned the movement into flame as long as they were let alone, and even now tribes living beyond the scope of missionaries and traders prefer the Christian traveller whom they know to the Moslem stranger from the coast whom they usually distrust, and who, to do him justice, seldom ventures among them, unless compelled by paramount self-interest, generally in connection with some European scheme or other. Hitherto pan-Islam had been an instinctive and entirely natural riposte to the menace or actual aggression of non-Moslems; it assumed the character of a definite organisation under the crafty touch of that wily diplomat Abdul Hamid, once called by harsh critics 'the Damned,' though his efforts in that direction have been quite eclipsed by more recent exponents.'

Science and Technology Policy in the United States: Open Systems in Action

  After more than 500 years of marginalization, Latin America's forty million Indians have recently made major strides in gaining political recognition and civil rights. In this book, social scientists explore the important role of religion in indigenous activism, showing the ways that religion has strengthened indigenous identity and contributed to the struggle for indigenous rights in the region. Drawing on case studies from Bolivia, Peru, Guatemala, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Mexico, the contributors explore four key questions. How have traditional religions interacted with Christianity to produce new practices and beliefs? What resources, motivations, and ideological legitimacies do religious institutions provide for indigenous social movements? How effective are these movements in achieving their goals? Finally, as new religious groups continue to compete for adherents in the region, how will individuals' religious choices affect political outcomes? Resurgent Voices in Latin America offers new insight into the dynamics of indigenous social movements and into the complex and changing world of Latin American religious. The essays show that religious beliefs, practices, and institutions have both affected and been affected by political activism.

Divinity and Diversity: A Christian Affirmation of Religious Pluralism

  One of today's foremost theologians presents the case for embracing religious pluralism as integral to the Christian gospel. Religious pluralism is a fact in North American society today. More than at any other time, adherents of different religious traditions live, work, and play side by side. Yet the fact of religious pluralism creates a tension for a large number of Christians. At the same time they have realized that Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, and members of many other religious groups have become their neighbors, they are also aware of Christian teachings that seem to exclude these groups. Statements such as 'no one comes to the Father except through me,' and 'outside the church there is no salvation,' seem to imply that these new neighbors are not part of the family of God, or at least that their religious beliefs and practices are not viable avenues to human wholeness and salvation. In this insightful and irenic work, Marjorie Hewitt Suchocki demonstrates that Christians need not ignore, nor even compromise, the teachings of the gospel in order to accept and rejoice in religious pluralism. She argues that the Christian doctrines of creation, incarnation, the image of God, and the reign of God make the diversity of religions necessary. Without such diversity the rich and deep community of humanity that is the goal of the Christian gospel cannot be realized. Along the way Suchocki rejects the exclusivist claim that there can be no relationship with God apart from the church, and the inclusivist idea that Christianity is the highest expression of the search for God, with other religions possessing in part that which Christians possess in full. She argues instead for a pluralist position, insisting on a full recognition of the distinctive gifts that all of the religious traditions bring to the human table.


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