God is in charge. God is good. God is omnipotent. Unless you're a Mormon.Then the church is in charge. The church is good. The church is omnipotent.
1. Within the mormon church, Joseph Smith is worshiped as a god: Praise to the man who communed with Jehovah! Jesus anointed that Prophet and Seer. Blessed to open the last dispensation, Kings shall extol him, and nations revere.
Praise to his memory, he died as a martyr; Honored and blest be his ever great name! Long shall his blood, which was shed by assassins, Stain Illinois* while the earth lauds his fame.
Great is his glory and endless his priesthood. Ever and ever the keys he will hold. Faithful and true, he will enter his kingdom, Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old.
Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven; Earth must atone for the blood of that man. Wake up the world for the conflict of justice. Millions shall know "brother Joseph" again.
Hail to the Prophet, ascended to heaven! Traitors and tyrants now fight him in vain. Mingling with Gods, he can plan for his brethren; Death cannot conquer the hero again. --William W. Phelps
Then there is this quote: “If we get our salvation, we shall have to pass by Joseph Smith; if we enter our glory, it will be through the authority he has received. We cannot get around him.” -1988 Melchizedek Priesthood Study Guide, p. 142, Apostle George Q. Cannon
2. The church demands blind obedience to its leaders: President Wilford Woodruff stated: “I say to Israel, The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as president of the Church to lead you astray. It is not in the program. It is not in the mind of God.” (The Discourses of Wilford Woodruff)
or this: President Marion G. Romney tells of this incident which happened to him:
I remember years ago when I was a Bishop I had President [Heber J.] Grant talk to our ward. After the meeting I drove him home. . . .Standing by me, he put his arm over my shoulder and said: “My boy, you always keep your eye on the President of the Church, and if he ever tells you to do anything, and it is wrong, and you do it, the Lord will bless you for it.” Then with a twinkle in his eye, he said, “But you don’t need to worry. The Lord will never let his mouthpiece lead the people astray.” [In Conference Report, October 1960, p. 78]
Many times, as I have discussed the fact the Joseph Smith practices polygamy as well as polyandry, many mormons, to reconcile this, they have said that Joseph Smith was human and subject to human frailties and weaknesses, yet according to the scriptures, “Thou shalt give heed unto all his words and commandments which he shall give unto you” (D&C 21:4; italics added).
Brigham Young had this to say, “I have never yet preached a sermon and sent it out to the children of men, that they may not call scripture” (Journal of Discourses), 26 vols all words of profits scripture
3. When People attend the temple, they make covenants, but they don't covenant with god, they covenant with the church.
this is the law of consecration: The Law of Consecration: You and each of you covenant and promise before God, angels, and these witnesses at this altar, that you do accept the Law of Consecration as contained in the Doctrine and Covenants, in that you do consecrate yourselves, your time, talents, and everything with which the Lord has blessed you, or with which he may bless you, to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for the building up of the Kingdom of God on the earth and for the establishment of Zion.
4. When People stand up in church and testify, they don't testify of god, but of the church. they say, 'I know the church is true.' They don't say, 'I believe in god.'
5. For the last several years, the church has had all of its lessons in relief society and priesthood focus on the presidents of the church. The lessons focus of the current leaders in the church rather than Jesus or god. In fact, Ezra Taft Benson said that the prophet's word overrides even the scriptures themselves focus on leaders not god
Joseph Smith and Brigham Young had this to say on scriptures being less important than the word of current prophets, “You have got the word of God before you here in the Bible, Book of Mormon, and Doctrine and Covenants; you have the written word of God, and you who give revelations should give revelations according to those books, as what is written in those books is the word of God. We should confine ourselves to them.” When he concluded, Brother Joseph turned to Brother Brigham Young and said, “Brother Brigham, I want you to take the stand and tell us your views with regard to the living oracles and the written word of God.” Brother Brigham took the stand, and he took the Bible, and laid it down; and he took the Book of Mormon, and laid it down; and he took the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, and laid it down before him, and he said: “There is the written word of God to us, concerning the work of God from the beginning of the world, almost, to our day. And now,” said he, “when compared with the living oracles those books are nothing to me; those books do not convey the word of God direct to us now, as do the words of a Prophet or a man bearing the Holy Priesthood in our day and generation. I would rather have the living oracles than all the writing in the books.” profit over scripture
6. Each Easter and Christmas, the church does not teach special Sunday lessons focusing on Christ. Instead it follows the lesson plans and teaches lessons on the prophets and the church.
I have been having a discussion with a friend who remains a mormon, and she cannot comprehend how I can remain a good person at the same time I have left the mormon church. When someone leaves the Baptist church, for example, their fellow church members wish them well on their journey and do not consider them apostates or anti-. So what is the difference? I believe it is this; that the mormon church has usurped the role of god and replaced it with the role of the church. In the mind of the mormon, when one leaves the church, they have abandoned morality and reason that a person ties to god.
Why is this important? Because of autonomy. A person has intuition, inspiration. A person has the right to self determination, but that is usurped when the church takes over the role of god.
The role of the church should be to teach about god, not to be worshiped as an entity of itself, not to be divine in and of itself. Yet, in the eye of the members of the mormon church, that is what the church has become.