Hank Hanegraaff, president of the Christian Research Institute and host of the Bible Answer Man broadcast, continues to reflect on the passing of famous individuals—specifically, John Madden and Harry Reid (both died December 28, 2021). Madden might be called the high priest of football. NFL games are highly ritualized and liturgical, and for many people, the NFL has become an object of worship—their idol. Madden, who won a Superbowl in 1976 with the Oakland Raiders and became the face of a videogame empire based on the NFL, was a coaching phenomenon and football’s greatest evangelist. But he now has passed from this life into eternity. And then there is Harry Reid, who led the Senate from 2007–2015. The Democrats grumbled about his ban on partial-birth abortion and his opposition to Roe v. Wade—and he was a died-in-the-wool Mormon. Thus, Reid passed from this life believing that “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens” (Joseph Smith). He believed that Jesus Christ is not the self-existent Creator of all things but is, rather, the spirit-brother of Lucifer, conceived in heaven by a celestial Mother and then came in flesh as a result of the Father having sex with the virgin Mary. He believed that “the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion” (Joseph Smith). He held to the four Mormon standard works—the Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price. It’s worth noting that Doctrine and Covenants is a compilation of divine revelations that includes the doctrine of polygamy. Not until the Mormons were threatened by the federal government did Mormon president Wilford Woodruff receive a revelation relegating polygamy to the afterlife. And Pearl of Great Price is notorious for having been used by Mormonism to prevent those of African heritage from entering the priesthood and from being exalted to godhood. Reid believed that Temple Mormons will make it to the Celestial Heaven, but only those who are sealed in secret Temple rituals will make it to the third level of the Celestial Kingdom and become gods of their own planets. Because of such teachings, and many others, Mormonism has little to do with true Christianity. What is vitally important for all of us to recognize is that there is a true faith—the true faith once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3). Everything else is a corruption of the true faith. Consider how important it is to be in the true faith, because no one gets out of this world alive. Let us glorify God in all that we think, say, and do.
For further study, see Hank Hanegraaff, “Is Jesus Christ the Spirit Brother of Satan?” https://www.equip.org/article/is-jesus-christ-the-spirit-brother-of-satan/; Hank Hanegraaff, “Mormonism And Polygamy,” https://www.equip.org/hank_speaks_out/mormonism-and-polygamy/; Eric Johnson, “Plural Marriage and Joseph Smith: A PR Nightmare in Mormonism,” https://www.equip.org/article/plural-marriage-joseph-smith-pr-nightmare-mormonism/; Bill McKeever, “Unexplaining the Mormon Priesthood Ban on Blacks,” https://www.equip.org/article/unexplaining-mormon-priesthood-ban-blacks/; Eric Johnson, “Mormonism, Afterlife, and Striving after Godhood,” https://www.equip.org/article/mormonism-the-afterlife-and-striving-after-godhood/; Bill McKeever and Eric Johnson, “The Mormon View of Salvation: A Gospel That Is Truly Impossible,” https://www.equip.org/article/mormon-view-salvation-gospel-truly-impossible/.
See David Colton, “Hank Aaron, Bob Dole, Cicely Tyson, John Madden: Remembering Notables Who Died in 2021,” USA Today, December 19, 2021 (updated December 31, 2021), https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/12/19/famous-people-who-died-2021/6496794001/.