Are there strong parallels between Mormonism, Islam, and ESS?
In the recent posts on ACFJ regarding Wayne Grudem, Bruce Ware, women, authority, etc., I kept thinking about the parallel and false doctrines in Mormonism and Islam.
My parents were both born & raised in the state of Utah, which is largely Mormon, and I know firsthand the damage of patriarchal politics in family, society and culture from a pervasive “religious” context that is entrenched and engulfing.
There are several strong parallels between the doctrines found in Mormonism and Islam concerning women. I have long believed that both “faiths” are probably rooted in demonic, oppressive influences. And just like abusers, one faith is covert (Mormonism) and one is brutally overt (Islam).
Both religions endorse polygamy. Mormons deny the practice here on Earth, but still perform plural “spiritual” marriages because single women “need” a husband in order to enter “celestial” Heaven. If a woman remains single and marriage is unlikely, then earthly husbands are “married” to these women, effective in the hereafter. Islam allows up to four wives during life, and of course 70 virgins if a Muslim man is martyred. Oddly, if Muslim women are martyred, there is no parallel incentive or reward.
Both religions oppress women through authoritarian theology: silencing their voices, minimizing their worth, demanding submission, covering their beauty, expecting multiple pregnancies / large families, tithing to improve their status while neglecting wives and children, punitive attitudes, harsh consequences for “disobedience”, elevating men to authoritarian positions, subjugating women with abundant humiliation, denigration, etc.
Both religions are strongly ‘works-based’ and since women are inherently inferior to men, their works are also inferior. Thus, women can never be assured of heaven. Without a man they are doomed to lesser reward or no reward at all.
And finally, both Islam / Mormonism recognize Jesus as a prophet, but only His humanity — not His deity. Grudem and Ware who teach ESS / ERAS¹ are dangerously close to saying something similar to Islam and Mormonism in this respect, whether they admit it or not. The more I read Grudem’s version of submission & authority, the more it looks like shariah law and the less it looks like freedom in Christ. The more it becomes clear that it is not grace; it is anathema.
Then came this across my desk today, and it is both frightening and illuminating: Gatestone Institute [Internet Archive link]. Their post reads in part:
Islamic law, always harsh, is still harsher for women. According to the Koran, men have “authority” over women and may beat them if they are “disobedient” (4:34). According to Mohammad, the prophet of Islam, women are less intelligent than men [Internet Archive link] — two women are needed to equal one man’s testimony — and women ……are likened to donkeys and dogs [Internet Archive link] in their ability to distract a man from his prayer and thereby annul it.
How is this different from the doctrine of ESS / ERAS? Is it possible that Grudem, Ware and company are not “testing the spirits”, but instead have succumbed to them?
And what will all the Grudem / Ware aficionados do or say in defense of Christians, male and female, who are being abused, beaten, humiliated & even murdered under Islam, when THEY have turned a blind eye to the abuses excused under their own false teaching of submission & authority? What will be THEIR defense?
The Graystone Institute post ends with this:
One seldom hears of …..a Muslim wife killing her husband for apostasy, due to the lack of authority women have in the Muslim world.
You do not want to be a woman in Islam.
Many women could say the same under the Church.
¹ ESS — Eternal Subordination of the Son (to the Father)
ERAS — Eternal Relations of Authority and Submission in the Trinity
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