But it was obvious to me that Beck wasn’t into the extra money or fame. It was obvious to me that he was a new creation in Christ. I know he’s Mormon and all that. I also remember reading a book by Professor Harvey Conn decades ago that said that you have to be very careful when judging a person’s salvation—some people with lousy theology have their hearts right with God, and some people with impeccable theology are cold toward God.Oh this hurts, this hurts. WORLD is a Christian magazine, there ought to be more discernment here. Beck doesn't hold back on Jesus, but his Jesus is not the Christian Jesus. He "knows" who took him out of the pit and it was Jesus, but his Jesus is not the Christian Jesus.
Glenn Beck isn’t cold toward God. He is red hot. He is “a brand plucked from the fire” (Zechariah 3:2). He knows what pit he was in—and he knows exactly who took him out of it. If I were his station manager I would be biting my fingernails every day, because the man just doesn’t hold back about Jesus, and I can say without hesitation that I have not heard the essentials of the gospel more clearly and boldly in any church than on his program.
I have heard all the criticisms, and I can find sympathy for them—about the Mormonism, about the dangers of religious syncretism, etc. But regarding the Mormon thing, I think we should regard Beck as an Apollos and pray for a Priscilla and Aquila in his life, to steer him better (Acts 18). I just don’t see how anyone can listen to the man for a solid week and not be as blessed as I am by his courage, his utter lack of fear of man, and his sharp and personal testimony of Christ’s transforming power.
Beck CAN preach the gospel so that it sounds Christian, he's amazing that way, although I've known another Mormon who can talk gospel almost as well and make you think they believe what any Christian believes. If you know anything about Mormonism, though, that puts you in the position of waiting bug-eyed for the other shoe to drop. Eventually it does and the very strange and twisted Mormon version of the gospel is revealed.
At his rally on August 28th he revealed some of those Mormon beliefs that show his version of the gospel is not the Christian version. He believes American Indians are Jews, because he believes the tall tale of the Book of Mormon about some Jews coming across the ocean to the Americas back in 600 BC -- or 3000 BC or whatever -- and becoming the progenitors of the native Americans, who were then encountered by the Pilgrims when they arrived however many centuries or millennia later.
Beck's God is not the one true God. It's painful to think so many Christians are apparently so easily deceived or willing to rationalize it away and stand with a heretic for the sake of politics.
That same issue has another comment on Beck, by Marvin Olasky, the magazine's founder, Beckoning Christians, which gives good reasons why Christians should not align with him, while oddly, it seems to me, not exactly warning Christians against it:
...Let's watch the Beck movement and pray that it does not become a cult of personality.The COUNTRY is better off with Glenn Beck than without him!!! Well, maybe, maybe not. This IS the thought that keeps Christians from pulling away from him, however. The guy does a great job with all the political issues we care about most. It's like having a tooth pulled out with a wrench to have to draw back from his cause. Finally someone comes along with the guts and the message we've been craving and he's a heretic and Christians CANNOT ALIGN WITH A HERETIC. Ouch. Owwwwwwwch.
...Bottom line: Glenn Beck is not the problem. His entertaining lectures are a slap in the face to poisonous political correctness. He's not the antidote, either. Christians should take refuge in the Lord and not in a beckoning embrace. But this country is better off with Glenn Beck than without him.
But is making Beck into a little god the problem here? The "cult of personality" danger Olasky sees in this? I suppose it could become that, but that misses the primary point that Beck is doing everything in his power to make Mormonism look like Christianity and deceiving Christians who love his politics, and THAT's the danger right now.
Again, Beck's gospel is not the Christian gospel no matter how much he can make it sound like it, and maybe even believe it himself, at least to some extent. Again, if he stuck to politics ONLY we could join with him. But he doesn't. Clearly lately he's on a mission to religionize his message.
That's what makes him dangerous.
Mormonism would NOT be good for this country if it ever got a political foothold and if it did, Christians would rue the day because Mormons have an agenda of their own, which I touched on briefly a few posts back. I should do more research into this and post on it again soon, but my impression is that Mormonism in political power wouldn't be much more desirable than Islam in political power, and they DO seek that kind of political power.
P.S. Here's a good discussion of the problem with the WORLD article by Justin Taylor at Gospel Coalition, Andrée Seu’s Tragic Mistake on the Gospel of Glenn Beck.