Many of you who follow my blog may be wondering why I am many other Christians say that Glenn Beck (and Mormons in general) are not Christian. I can assure you, it is not because I think I can enforce my opinion upon another. It is because Scripture tells me Mormons are not Christians. If I were to accept Beck’s reasoning, then I would have to accept the argument that Muslims are Christians as well. Mormons and Christians both claim to believe in Jesus as the Messiah, so, by this definition, they are ‘Christian.’ But this is no different from any of the attacks Beck has made against ‘Progressives’ for perverting the language to deceive the uniformed listener. I do not want you to be uniformed, so, if you want to know why I know I am correct when I say Beck is not a Christian, please read the rest of this post.
First, we must remember that the creator of a religion is the highest authority as to what that religion teaches. In the case of the Judeo/Christian faith, that Creator is God. Christ is God (God the Son). This means Yahweh and Yeshua (Jesus) are the highest authority on Christ’s Gospel message. Next, we must understand that Paul tells us he received the Gospel directly from Jesus:
Gal 1:12 (NASB)
Paul Defends His Ministry
11 For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12 For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.
It is also important to know that Paul was a Pharisee. This means he was an expert on the Old Testament. likely having studied it since he was ten or twelve years of age. This means Paul was well equipped to test Christ’s revelation against Scripture, which is what we are told to do:
1 John 4: 1-3 (NASB)
Testing the Spirits
4 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.
So Paul is to be trusted. He received his revelation (i.e. the Gospel) directly from Jesus, and Paul was well equipped to test that Gospel against Scripture. Nothing in Paul’s writings indicates he disagreed with Christ’s Gospel. In fact, every indication we have testifies that Christ’s Gospel clarified the Old Testament for Paul, as he quotes it often in his pastoral letters. Therefore, we should accept what Paul has to say about Jesus and the Gospel as one who has been given authority to teach on both matters directly from God (in the form of the Son).
So what does Paul have to say about the matter at hand? Well, first, Paul tells us not to listen to anyone who teaches any other Jesus but the one he and the Apostles taught:
2 Cor 11: 1-6 (NASB)
Paul Defends His Apostleship
11 I wish that you would bear with me in a little foolishness; but [a]indeed you are bearing with me. 2 For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. 3 But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. 4 For if [b]one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully. 5 For I consider myself not in the least inferior to the [c]most eminent apostles. 6 But even if I am unskilled in speech, yet I am not so in knowledge; in fact, in every way we have made this evident to you in all things.
So Paul is clearly telling believers to suffer through anyone trying to teach a different Jesus, but not to be deceived by them. This is exactly what Muhammad and Joseph Smith did: they taught a different Jesus. To Muhammad, Jesus was just a prophet, not the Son of God and was never crucified. According to Joseph Smith, Jesus is not a god, or if he is, he is one of several gods. This is because Smith said Jesus was born of carnal knowledge between Adam (who later became god) and a ‘borrowed’ wife. In both cases, Christ’s deity is negated and, according to the Apostle, John, whom Jesus loved, says this is the spirit of anti-Christ. Now, let’s look at what Paul has to say about the Gospel:
Gal 1: 6-9 (NASB)
Perversion of the Gospel
6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you [c]by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel [d]contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be [e]accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel [f]contrary to what you received, he is to be [g]accursed!
So Paul says that if another man — or even an angel — comes to you and teaches a different Gospel, he is to be accursed! Both Islam and the Mormon religion started with a man claiming to be a prophet who was being given a revelation from an angel. Both Muhammad and Smith taught a different message from Christ’s Gospel. According to Paul, they are to be accursed! So Paul, the hand-picked messenger of Jesus, Christ, is telling us that Mormons and Muslims are not Christians, nor do they worship, follow or obey the One True God.
This is why I say Beck is not a Christian: because Christ’s hand-picked Apostle and the Apostle, John, whom Christ loved, both say Beck is not a Christian. now, for those who know the Bible, that is the testimony of two witnesses there: Paul’s and John’s. So, according to God’s law, Beck is guilty of blaspheme, idolatry and perverting the Gospel message. To then call me a ‘hater’ because I am trying to correct him (something else the Bible tells us to do) only adds Beck;s spiritual peril. Beck claims to be a Christian, yet he calls another Christian a ‘hater.’ Jesus said to pray for our enemies, not curse them. This is why I make sure to clearly state that I love Beck (agape love) and I pray for him often, as well as the deceived around him and the people he is deceiving in his audience. But I do not hate him. All I am trying to do is read God’s word and then do my best to live according to Christ’s Gospel as Christ defines it — not as men do.
For those who would rather the warning come directly from Christ instead of His Apostles:
Matt 7: 15-23 (NASB)
A Tree and Its Fruit
15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will [k]know them by their fruits. [l]Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, you will [m]know them by their fruits.
Matthew 24:24-27 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will [a]show great [b]signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the [c]elect. 25 Behold, I have told you in advance. 26 So if they say to you, ‘Behold, He is in the wilderness,’ do not go out, or, ‘Behold, He is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe them. 27 For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes even to the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be.
Both Muhammad and Joseph Smith claimed to not only be a prophet, but the last prophet. The problem here is that Christ, Himself, said He is the last Prophet. That is the message in the parable of the landowner. The Landowner is God, the father and the Son is Jesus Christ, the last one sent.
Matt 21: 33-42 (NASB)
Parable of the Landowner
33 “Listen to another parable. There was a [i]landowner who planted a vineyard and put a wall around it and dug a wine press in it, and built a tower, and rented it out to [j]vine-growers and went on a journey 34 When the [k]harvest time approached, he sent his slaves to the vine-growers to receive his produce. 35 The vine-growers took his slaves and beat one, and killed another, and stoned a third. 36 Again he sent another group of slaves larger than the first; and they did the same thing to them. 37 But afterward he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ 38 But when the vine-growers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir; come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’ 39 They took him, and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. 40 Therefore when the [l]owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vine-growers?” 41 They *said to Him, “He will bring those wretches to a wretched end, and will rent out the vineyard to other vine-growers who will pay him the proceeds at the proper seasons.”
42 Jesus *said to them, “Did you never read in the Scriptures,
‘The stone which the builders rejected,
This became the chief corner stone;
This came about from the Lord,
And it is marvelous in our eyes’?
In verse 42, Jesus is declaring that He is the cornerstone, the Son and the final Prophet and Chief Priest. Anyone — anyone who tries to change who Christ said He is or His Gospel message is to be accursed!
[NOTE: the vineyard is Israel, the slaves are God’s prophets and the vine-growers are the people who receive God’s message. The produce is God’s harvest of those who have accepted Him and believed in Him. The Son is Jesus. And the last scene, when God ends those who killed His Son, is symbolic of the Day of the Lord. A faithful, 1st Century Jew would have clearly understood this message and its meaning, and in the next few passages, we are told that even the Pharisees understood it.]