One of the questions I get over and over again is “How wide is the divide between Mormonism and Christianity? Is it really substantive?”
Well, in 1997 Stephen Robinson, a professor at a Mormon university, BYU, and Craig Blomberg, a professor at a Christian seminary, attempted to answer that question in a book that was titled “How Wide the Divide?” In the end the book, released by a major Christian publishing house, concluded that the divide might not really be as wide as we had thought it was.
With respect to the central doctrine of the nature of God, for instance, the authors concurred that both evangelicals and Latter-Day Saints believe in an omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, infinite, eternal and unchangeable God. Blomberg and Robinson forward this claim despite the words of Mormonism founder Joseph Smith who emphatically declared that the first principle of the gospel was to know that God has not been God for all eternity.
Now Smith put it like this: “I’m going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea and take away the veil so that you may see. It is the first principle of the gospel to know for a certainty the character of God. He was once a man like us, yea that God himself, the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth.”
Sounds like there’s a wide divide between the God of Christianity and the god of Mormonism. Well today, a full decade after the release of “How Wide the Divide?” presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, like Blomberg and Robinson, has made a concerted effort to minimize the differences between Mormonism and Christianity. His references to Jesus Christ as Son of God and Savior of mankind might sound orthodox, but in reality, as a temple Mormon who has served as a bishop and a stake president, Romney knows full well that the Jesus of Mormonism is clearly not the Christ of Christianity, and as such he’s obscured the face of Mormonism through the manufacture of a Mormon mirage.
Again, our goal isn’t to tell you who to vote for or even to say that he wouldn’t be a good president. Our goal is simply to say this: We should not be fooled by those who say that the divide between orthodox Christianity and Mormonism is a bridgeable chasm. It’s not. It is clearly an unbridgeable chasm.