The Indefensible Position Of ‘A Cultural Disciple’!


I have always been puzzled when someone, of any faith, professes allegiance to their religion, but then add the caveat that they don’t believe in many things their church teaches. What? Years ago Marion G. Romney said this:

“Some members assume that one can be in full harmony with the spirit of the gospel, enjoy full fellowship in the Church, and at the same time be out of harmony with the leaders of the Church and the counsel and direction they give. Such a position is wholly inconsistent, because the guidance of this Church comes not alone from the written word but also from continuous revelation, and the Lord gives that revelation to the Church through his chosen prophet. It follows, therefore, that those who profess to accept the gospel and who at the same time criticize and refuse to follow the counsel of the prophet are assuming an indefensible position. Such a spirit leads to apostasy. It is not new. It was prevalent in the days of Jesus…” (Marion G. Romney, “Unity,” Ensign, May 1983).

Being a follower of the gospel requires more than being a “cultural disciple” of the Savior. Over the history of Christianity it is clear that many embraced the teachings of Jesus Christ for political or social reasons. They wanted to be a part of the “in” group but they couldn’t quite bring themselves to say or act in accordance to something that is not really part of who they were. We are all guilty, to some degree of disobedience. But that is different from being pro-active in criticizing leaders of the church or its doctrine. When I hear someone of my faith take a public position contrary to the declared position of the leaders of the church I can’t help but wonder if they are attempting to have one foot in Zion, while striving to please man. As Romney stated, it is an “indefensible position”.

I am a firm believer in the words of the Savior as recorded in the gospel of Luke. “…Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth. (Luke 11:17).  Every man is a “house”, so to speak. One cannot be divided. If one is not totally in, the soul or house of that man will fall. We live in a day when we are required to stand united with the leaders of the church. In the coming years we will be called on to become “spiritual warriors” for the gospel. Taking the position of a “cultural disciple” will not make us strong enough to survive the perils of the last days. Our position as a cultural disciple of the Lord will be indefensible at the judgment day. May we strengthen our testimonies on a daily basis so that we will be found true followers of the Savior and not just ‘cultural’ disciples.


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