Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Preface – Is the (LDS) Church as True as the Gospel? A Constitutional Approach

What follows is a nearly complete first draft of about a 250-page book intended to describe the major problems with the LDS church today, plus a few suggested remedies. This draft will probably need to go through numerous changes before it could be more formally published.

At the moment, four chapters near the end of the book each contain little more than a topic sentence and a few research notes. Those chapter numbers have an "x" in front of them.

The intent of this effort is to try to discover whether some portion of those people who are leaving the church (which one estimate puts at about 500 members per day) would be willing to put in a little extra effort to study my analysis of the current LDS church, and decide to use this book text as at least a partial guide to implementing some major changes to the church from the inside. I am hoping that about 20% of those people who "resign" from the church will be willing to consider a new option. Besides the two basic options of staying in the church and leaving the church, there may be a third option which allows people to stay in the church while gently making their views known and promoting change for the better.

I believe most church members do not typically have the time to study church history and church doctrine to the extensive degree necessary to form their own well considered opinion on all the most basic issues concerning religion and its management. Hopefully, this book will contain enough information for individuals to begin to form their own well-established opinions.

The biggest single problem which I see today is that the church has gradually chosen to end typical vigorous Christian charity activities, and instead to claim all of that member charity money for use at church headquarters, using the old law of Moses term of "tithing." The bulk of that "tithing" money I believe is used very poorly or even completely wasted, where judicious use of that money and the related human resources could be used to make enormous improvements in our society. I believe that if the church were making remarkable improvements to our society and our nation, many of those who are now unhappy with the church would have a reason to change their opinion and their actions.

In summary, I see Christian charity and "tithing" as mutually exclusive concepts: if the "tithing" (taxation to gain salvation) option is chosen, serious charity disappears, meaning that the most important sign of a Christian person disappears. This is especially true when every other level of government is constantly trying to raise taxes or "tithing" to build their own economic empires which compete with what should be more efficient voluntary religious activity.

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