They believe in being honest, true, chaste benevolent, virtuous, and in doing to all men; indeed, they may say that they follow the admonition of Paul-they believe all thing, they hope all things, they have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things
The Law of Blood Atonement is a belief–a command–that some sins are so great that the sinner should be executed (or castrated, or otherwise destroyed) and only that way can he be forgiven. One of the greatest sins is for a Mormon to leave the church and then speak against it. These are “apostates.” While there are historical records of plenty of blood atonement murders carried out on the command of church leaders in the 19th Century. Mormons seem to have changed this practice. Now such people are shunned by friends and family, they lose their jobs, their businesses are not patronized, etc. In the fundamentalist Mormon community (not the mainstream church, but the culture has the same origins), people are evicted from their homes built on church controlled land. Bottom line, modern, mainstream Mormons believe that it is just fine to engage in real, damaging extra-judicial punishment when a believer stops believing. What’s really perverse is they believe that hurting people in this manner is for the benefit of the victim.
There’s a good, well-researched discussion of blood atonement here:
The Mormons are a religious and cultural group related to Mormonism, a religion started by Joseph Smith during the American Second Great Awakening. A vast majority of Mormons are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) while a minority are members of other independent churches. Many Mormons are also either independent or non-practicing. The center of Mormon cultural influence is in Utah, and North America has more Mormons than any other continent, though the majority of Mormons live outside the United States.
Mormons have developed a strong sense of communality that stems from their doctrine and history. They dedicate large amounts of time and resources to serving in their church, and many young Mormons choose to serve a full time proselyting mission. Mormons have a health code that eschews alcoholic beverages, tobacco, coffee, tea, and other addictive substances. They tend to be very family-oriented, and have strong connections across generations and with extended family. Mormons have a strictlaw of chastity, requiring abstention from sexual relations outside of marriage and strict fidelity within marriage.
Mormons are sometimes associated with polygamy. The practice of polygamy (or plural marriage) was a distinguishing characteristic of many early Mormons; however it was disavowed by The LDS Church in 1890, and discontinued over the next 15 years. Today, polygamy is practiced only by Mormon fundamentalists who have broken with the LDS Church.
Most Mormons self-identify as Christian, though some of their beliefs differ from mainstream Christianity. Mormons believe in the Bible, as well as other books of scripture, such as the Book of Mormon. They have a unique view of cosmology, and believe that all people are spirit-children of God. Mormons believe that returning to God requires following the example of Jesus Christ, and accepting his atonement through specific ordinances such as baptism. They believe the authority to perform these ordinances was restored through Joseph Smith, and that their church is guided by living prophets and apostles. Central to Mormon faith is the belief that God speaks to his children and answers their prayers.
When I stopped going to church, I truly, truly, believed I was going to be punished by God and something bad was going to happen to me. I waited for it. My dad had even told me I was going to be cursed! That made it even worse. Well a few years went by with no incident and one day it dawned on me that nothing had happened and I really couldn’t believe it! I was so convinced of this fact that I just couldn’t wrap my brain around why nothing had happened!
Just recently I was thinking back to that time in my life and wondering where that fear had come from. Was it taught to me in church? Was it just my own guilt eating at me? Shortly after that I was flipping through my old BoM trying to find something and I came across a scripture in Mosiah (I believe it was). This page was heavily highlighted with notes all over the place. It basically said that God would put a “stumbling block” before you if you didn’t follow in God’s path. And if you did follow God he would take away the stumbling blocks before you. In the margin I had written “You will be punished if you don’t do what you’re supposed to and if you do, God will make your life easier.” It was something to that effect.
Unbelievable that I believed such hog-wash!
The biggest garrot offered to the rightous is to be accepted into the highest level of heaven where you are offered a realm to be the residing god. What exactly that means is vague and can be interpreted to mean several things. but the belive in the existance of other gods is a form of polytheism. Additionally our the “heavenly father” who orignatted from Kolob is not described as the first of all gods. Since you can become a god of a realm, who is to say that the “heavenly father” is not someone else who was rightous enough to acquire godhood?
By: John B