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Inside Mormonism: What Mormons Really Believe Paperback – Jan 2001

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First Sentence
Mormonism has passed through a number of theological stages in which its doctrine has changed, often suddenly and dramatically, due to supposed new divine revelations. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 30 reviews
52 of 57 people found the following review helpful
Mormonism from a Catholic viewpoint 29 April 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book deals with mormonism from a Catholic perspective. The author, a priest who converted to mormonism and later reverted to the Catholic Church, provides us with a unique perspective on the LDS faith.
It contains an excellent refutation of the mormon doctrine of the total apostacy of the Christian Church, both from scripture and history. When it comes to doctrine the book accurately describes what the LDS Church teaches and quite a few facts that the LDS leaders would like to hide in the closet. The reviewers who have claimed that it does not accurately represent LDS doctrine give no specific examples. One is tempted to think they cannot.
As a fourth generation member of the LDS church who converted to christianity and later to the fullness of the faith in the Catholic Church, I heartily reccomend this work.
As we have seen examples of in other reviews of this book, members of the LDS Church are unable to believe that someone may have left their religion with honourable intentions, simply being convinced that it is not true while another faith is.
Instead they impute former members of the LDS religion with innumerable sins (most often sins of a sexual nature) which have allegedly weakened their faith in mormonism and made them want to find a set of moral standards that are easier to live with. They love to demonize their opponents. Which (of course) is standard cultic behaviour.
When it comes to the Catholic Church, such critiscism is laughable, given the fact that it for instance does not allow for the use of artificial contraception, divorce and remarriage or abortion under any circumstance, while the LDS faith does.
31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
An indispensable and thorough work 17 Jan. 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
What I really like about this book is that it not only demonstrates how and why Mormonism is false, it goes on to give positive alternatives to what Mormonism teaches, rather than leaving the disillusioned Mormon feeling destroyed.
The research and documentation on this book is well done and gives many jumping-off points for further research, even separating the worthwhile references from the rabid. It includes in its appendix the four different accounts of Smith's Vision.
This book is no short read but is fascinating and I would highly recommend it to both those who want to know how to talk intelligently with Mormon missionaries, as well as Mormons who have misgivings about Mormonism's incoherent theology, or its continually self-negating scriptures and elected prophets, or why Mormonism is uniquely apprehensive about sharing all of what it believes to outsiders and lower-ranking insiders.
I find it hard to believe that those who dismiss this book have actually opened it. Even those who are convinced that their branch of Mormonism is right would be ill-advised to ignore such a thorough work.
49 of 58 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
This is a thorough and well written book. Whether you agree with the author (as most Catholics and other Christians will) or disagree with the author (as most Mormons will) this is by far the best Christian apologetics book on the topic of Mormonism. The reviewer who labled this book "pretty ordinary" is absolutely wrong. No other work in this genre is so thoroughly researched and footnoted and no other work I have read covers Mormon beliefs and doctrimes so well. Unlike many books in this genre Mr. Bennet's book is very careful with historical and theological data. Reviewer Janice Parker's charge of "false documentation" is absolutely without merit. The work is meticulously documneted. There is absolutely no false documentation. The author's disbelief in Mormon doctrine and blief in another creed did not prevent him from being 100% correct in factual representations. Granted, some will take issue with the author's beliefs, but this should not be the basis for judging the merits of the work. Reviewer rickm447's comments of "Total Garbage" and that if you want to know what Mormons really believe just ask one of them are not at all sincere. The book is not garbage, the author may state facts which are difficult to repeat in "politically correct" or "polite" company, but this work is a very worthwile read for both Mormons and non-Mormons. What rickm77 seems to forget is that the run of the mill member of any religion is ill prepared to give you a thorough description of their faith's beliefs and practices. Mr. Bennet does not make up doctrines (which some critics of religions other than their own are apt to do), he goes directly to athoritiative Moromons sources and quotes them. Mr. Bennet is, if nothing else, fair. Mr. Bennet is also well educated in both religions, being both a former Catholic priest and a former Mormon. While few of us have had as tumultuous a religious history as Mr. Bennet, his book is very worthwile, in fact the most worthwhile of its genre.
Mormons would actually be well advised to read this book, especially Mormon apologists. This book is the best of the apologetical works opposed to Mormonism and if the Mormon apologist wants to be well prepared to meet the best challenges of his/her adversaries he/she would be well advised to read this book. Other works in this field by non-Mormons just do not measure up to Mr. Bennet's book. He has set a new standard in the field which will be difficult for other authors to match. Mormon apologists will not like the presentation that Mr. Bennet makes (all the more reason for them to read it if they want to be effective apologisits), but it is the best of its genre and a must read for those interested in the Mormon-Christian debate. If the Mormon apologist is well versed with this work then he or she will be well prepared for the best and strongest challenges he or she will face from educated Christians.
As difficult as it may be for Mr. Bennet's critics to swallow, Mr. Bennet shows respect for the truth and facts. That is why this book is of great value to both sides of this particular religous debate. I previously reviewed "A Tale of Two Cities: Mormons and Catholics" by Fr. William Taylor. Fr. Taylor's book is not polemical like Mr. Bennet's current book, but I am equally enthusiastic about both. Reading both books will give you a full idea of the facts and nature of the debate between Catholic Christianity (and pretty much all of Christianity) and Mormonism.
27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Informed Utah Parent 22 Feb. 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
When we moved to Utah about 8 yrs ago I found myself in a whole new world. My children were questioned and pressured about their beliefs and I didn't even know what I was dealing with. This book was really helpful. It helped me to understand my new LDS friends (who are wonderful people) and also helped me to answer my childrens questions and my own.
Our children have not converted as many of their friends have. And several of those who did convert have returned to their Catholic Roots. The Mormons do not give you a full understanding of their beliefs until after you are baptised Mormon. It is very important to do studies on your own beiefs as well as Mormon beliefs if you live here in Utah and this book has been the most helpful. If it full of references and I have checked them with the Mormon books and found them to be accurate.
The LDS church is not the only church that requires a moral family life, tithing, good works, and strong principles. All christian churches do. We need to remember this, and also remember that history, research, and archeologic evidence will back up our christian beliefs. This book goes into all of this evidence and helps you get a true picture of comparing the religions. It's a must read if you are raising a family in Utah.
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Good Discussion 7 Jun. 2005
By Reader From Aurora - Published on
Format: Paperback
Inside Mormonism is written by Isaiah Bennett a former Catholic priest who converted to the Church of Latter Day Saints then reconverted to Catholicism. Although it is within the realm of religious apologetic literature, I found the book's depth and tone superior to the norm for this genre.

Bennett provides a good discussion of a range of theological and historical issues pertaining to Mormonism. Throughout the book Bennett remains respectful. He recognizes that many Latter Day Saints are devout and well-intentioned people and, like believers in many faiths, may not be particularly well versed in doctrinal issues. Despite his delicate approach Bennett highlights many valid criticisms of the Church of Latter Day Saints. The short history of the Church is rife with historic and theological inconsistencies (e.g. changing beliefs, absence of archaeological evidence, false claims, lack of logical and philosophical rigour, etc.)

In examining many of these difficulties Bennett attempts to steer Mormons toward mainstream Christianity. It is doubtful, as other reviewers have noted, that he will have much success. While it is evident to a degree in all faiths, groups such as Latter Day Saints and Jehovah Witnesses appear to be particularly resistant to an open examination and discussion of their faith. This sensitivity is evident in some "reviews" posted on this site.

Overall, a good solid work that avoids much of the superficiality and emotionalism characteristic of apologetic literature. I recommend it for anyone seeking a better understanding of the Church of Latter Day Saints.
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