LATIN – apologeticus GREEK – apologetikos Apologetics: “The branch of theology that is concerned with defending or proving the truth of Christian doctrines” (The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition, Houghton Mifflin Company, 2009).
- NEW ON THE WEBSITE: DEFENDING THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS. Announcing a handy new reference guide written by Wayne Arnett. This book is great for use by apologists and anyone affected by anti-Mormon materials.
- FAIR LDS BOOKSTORE. Great deals for that special someone on your Christmas list. Order by December 1 to ensure delivery by Christmas.
- HUMOR: ANTI-MORMONS AT TEMPLE SQUARE. A cartoonist weighs in with his assessment of street preachers and their activity around Temple Square in recent years.
- NEW ON THE WEBSITE: FEEDING THE MULTITUDES–BEING FISHERS OF MEN. You can now read a transcript of Ross Baron’s popular 2001 FAIR presentation.
- NEW ON THE WEBSITE: THE GADIANTON ROBBERS IN MORMON’S THEOLOGICAL HISTORY–THEIR STRUCTURAL ROLE AND PLAUSIBLE IDENTIFICATION. This 2002 FAIR Conference presentation by Brant Gardner provided great insight into the probable Mesoamerican setting for the Book of Mormon.
- NEW ON THE WEBSITE: THE MISTAKES OF MEN–CAN THE SCRIPTURES BE ERROR-FREE? LDS critics are quick to point out “problems” in the Book of Mormon. In this 2002 FAIR Conference presentation, John Tvedtnes examines how those same types of problems exist in the Bible, as well.
- MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT, SCOTT GORDON.
- ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS. Interested in writing for FAIR? Learn how you can have your apologetics work published.
- PUBLISHING NOTES. Learn how you can become more involved in FAIR and how you can reuse the material we publish.
- FAIR JOURNAL ARCHIVES
Defending the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
by Wayne D. Arnett
FAIR is pleased to announce the publication of a handy new reference guide for those who wrestle with the fruits of anti-Mormon arguments and criticisms. Author Wayne Arnett wrote “Defending the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: A Reference Guide” in a very readable style, so it is valuable to readers of all ages and knowledge levels. The information packed into its 48 pages is invaluable to understanding not only why people criticize the Church, but how the motives and tactics of critics can be dealt with.
Take a look at the TOC:
- Purpose of this Guide
- A Few Definitions
- Setting the Stage
- Why the Critics?
- The Strategy
- A Little Perspective!
- Double Standard?
- What is a Prophet?
- To Be a Critic
- Cast of Characters
- A Common Example
- Silver Bullets
- A Rare Exception
- Faith is Required
- Internet Resources
- Suggested Reference
The reference guide covers concepts such as why do anti-Mormons fight against the Church, what types of anti-Mormons are there, what types of tactics do they use, and how should one approach anti-Mormon arguments. It is a well-reasoned approach to dealing with a sometimes difficult topic area.
“Defending” is appropriate for anyone swayed by anti-Mormon literature or tactics. The guide is formatted so that it can be easily mailed (it will fit in a standard business envelope) or can fit in a pocket.
Best of all, “Defending” is only $3.95. I think most of us know someone who could benefit from this valuable reference guide. You can find more information here:
FAIR ONLINE BOOKSTORE
Do you have that hard-to-shop-for scholar on your Christmas list? Are you by chance one of those (endearing, yet extraordinarily frustrating when it comes to Christmastime) people?
Look no further than our own FAIR online bookstore for that sure-to- please gift. And don’t forget to point or even shove friends and family towards it as well for their Christmas Shopping!
FAIR has over 1,000 books and other items for sale. We can’t exactly claim to be one-stop shopping for Christmas (yet), but we definitely are great for finding that perfect gift for the gospel students and serious researchers among us. You can order the book *youwant for Christmas, give it to your spouse as a gift, then you can read it when he or she is done.
While browsing through the store, be sure and check out our Christmas specials for some extra savings:
A word of warning, though–to ensure Christmas delivery you need to make up your mind and your order before December 1st. Christmas specials are limited for certain items to on hand stock to avoid any possible delay and disappointment Christmas morning, so order early to get the best deal on the widest selection.
You can also find our normal great selection of monthly specials at the FAIR LDS Bookstore:
– The FAIR Bookstore Staff
Humor: Anti-Mormons at Temple Square
Some Christians, perhaps over-zealous, feel that the best way to witness their faith is to actively protest Mormonism. Where better to do this than in the heart of Mormonism–Temple Square in Salt Lake City.
The antics of anti-Mormons at General Conference has been well documented in the past. The odd “Christian” behavior of anti-Mormon protesters is grist for the cartoonist’s pen. Greg Kearney, a FAIR member and political cartoonist, gives his take on their behavior in this humorous cartoon:
Feeding the Multitudes: Being Fishers of Men
by Ross Baron
One of the most popular presentations at our past FAIR Conferences is the one given in 2001 by Ross Baron. He described a series of community firesides that he conducted, along with the response by those in the community. The firesides were a direct response to increased anti-Mormon activity in Southern California. They were a great success, with over 1,000 people attending.
The audio and video of Ross’ presentation have been available on the FAIR Web site for some time. Now we have available an edited transcript of his presentation.
Read the article:
Feeding the Multitudes: Being Fishers of Men by Ross Baron
The Gadianton Robbers in Mormon’s Theological History: Their Structural Role and Plausible Identification
by Brant Gardner
The Gadianton robbers are a specific instance of the larger set of events and concepts revolving around what the Book of Mormon calls secret combinations. These secret combinations show up in connection with the Jaredites, then they disappear. They reappear scant years prior to the arrival of the Savior in the New World, and then disappear for over two hundred years. Finally, they reappear to play a role in the final denouement of the Nephites. While the majority of the conflicts in the Book of Mormon occur with the Lamanites, the most destructive conflicts are those that come at the hands of the secret combinations, and specifically the Gadianton robbers. The Lamanites might be the Nephites’ most common enemy, but the Gadianton robbers are the most dangerous. This combination of longevity, sporadic appearance, and ultimate danger, make the Gadianton robbers and secret combinations an important study in understanding the message of the Book of Mormon. The elucidation of this complex interaction of time, text, and meaning must necessarily center on both Mormon’s text and the ancient cultural environment of that text.
Read the presentation:
The Mistakes of Men: Can the Scriptures be Error-Free?
by John A. Tvedtnes
Criticisms of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, its scriptures and teachings come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from outright lies to exaggerations from misunderstandings to logical fallacies, and occasionally touch on real issues or areas for which we do not have sufficient information. I find it ironic that with such a wide range of approaches from which to choose, most critics select falsehoods and exaggerations. I believe that they employ these methods because of their a priori assumptions–often false–about our religion and their misguided views of the Bible and of Christian history.
Read the presentation:
The Mistakes of Men: Can the Scriptures be Error-Free? by John Tvedtnes
MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
I would like to thank you all for the support that you give to FAIR. We have received several e-mails from people who have found answers to questions by using the FAIR resources. Without your support, we would not be able to provide this valuable service.
Now is a good time to make a (US tax-deductible) donation to FAIR. I know I sound like a broken record asking for money each month. But FAIR is a grassroots organization, and we only survive because of the many small donations that we receive. While we have no paid staff, and no one receives any income from FAIR, there are ongoing expenses that have to be paid.
Please consider us for a donation this year. As an alternative to a small donation, if you would like to sponsor a FAIR conference, send an e-mail to me at FAIR President.
NEWS OF THE BLACK WEBSITE
Last month we launched a new Website dedicated to black members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at www.blacklds.org. While the Website is still new and needs additional work, we have received many positive comments and e-mails about it. Just this Sunday I had a member walk up to me at Church to thank us for this new resource. The following e-mail is one of several that we received this month.
I am a relatively new reader (about 2.5 months) of the articles that you and your team publish on www.fairlds.org. I am a member living in Trinidad. Our population is made up mainly of descendants of African slaves and descendants of Indian indentured labourers brought here after the abolition of slavery. We have approx. 1600 members (out of a population of approx 1.3 million) here including the 34 or so missionaries. I am amazed, however, that in conversation with a non-member, even when the person knows of the location of one of our five branches, he/she seems surprised that there are non-whites in the Church.
I have often found myself feeling inadequately prepared to deal with some of the anti- material or accusations that may come our way. The articles on your site help my confidence level to increase making me feel more equipped to deal with these instances should they arise.
I am especially grateful for the new www.blacklds.com site published. The page on history nearly brought tears to my eyes as I read about what the leaders of the Church dealt with the issue of slavery. Seeing our black history alongside American black history allowed me to see them (the Church’s leaders) in an historical context that gave me an inexplicable sense of comfort.
Thank you for all that you do.
To make the Website easier to find, we have added several new Website addresses. You can now find the Black Mormon Website at any of the following URLs:
If you would like to receive e-mails from the Black LDS Website, send an e-mail to FAIR President and write in the subject line “add me to the blacklds e-mail list.” Then, as items are added, or things are changed, we will send out an occasional e-mail notifying you.
We have several articles translated into other languages, but need Webmasters who will post the articles and maintain the Websites in those languages. We need people who are committed to the cause. It would mean posting the articles as well as working with others to translate articles from the FAIR Website. You don’t need to have a Website of your own–you just need to be willing and able to work on a FAIR Website in a foreign language.
If you are interested and willing, please e-mail Allen Wyatt at the Webmaster. The pay and benefits are great working at FAIR. You will be paid the same as what the president of FAIR gets–lots of blessings and a feeling of satisfaction.
-Scott Gordon President, FAIR
We welcome article submissions for the FAIR Web site. If you would like to submit an article, please review the editing guidelines at:
Submit your article to the FAIR Journal Editor. An appropriate article would be one that affirms the truthfulness of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
While LDS apologetics (in the broadest sense) deals with refuting critics of the Church, articles don’t necessarily have to deal with anti-Mormonism, but may deal with some new evidence of the Book of Mormon, some interesting scripture interpretation, a viewpoint or quote from the early Christian Fathers or other historical figure, an interesting lesson idea, an inspiring missionary story, Church history, or your view on a current event related to the Church or a piece from a historical journal.
We may also accept articles from people who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that may not necessarily meet the guidelines of supporting the church if it is a topic of general interest to people involved in apologetics.
A submission may range in length from several pages to a single paragraph.
FAIR is not owned, controlled by or affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. All research and opinions provided in the FAIR Journal and on the FAIR Web site (http://www.fairlds.org) are the sole responsibility of FAIR, and should not be interpreted as official statements of LDS doctrine, belief or practice.
If someone has forwarded this e-journal to you and you would like to join you should go to www.fairlds.org and click on the FAIR Publications link.
If you are very interested in apologetics and would like to actively participate in FAIR you should consider joining our apologetics e-mail list. Visit www.fairlds.org and click on the Join FAIR link to join this list.
If you manage your own e-mail list, and wish to include some of these thoughts or articles on your list, contact us through our Web site, at this page: www.fairlds.org/contact.psp. We have a fairly liberal policy of using our material so long as you contact us first to gain permission and clearly identify that your source was FAIR and by adding a link to the FAIR Web site (www.fairlds.org).
FAIR JOURNAL ARCHIVES
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