Columnists > Mailbag


Issue: "Welfare to work," March 16, 2002

Warming up

I was born in Salt Lake City and raised as a Mormon, but have been a pastor in Utah for 18 years, currently at the Wasatch Evangelical Free Church. The LDS church repackaging its public image is nothing new to us ("Melting the ice?" Feb. 16). But despite stories of opposition against Christians, there are some real changes in Utah, including new openness to honest dialog. What's unfortunate is that many ministries hold on to the antagonistic "cold war" mentality of the past. This is counterproductive. Instead of railing against Mormonism as a cult, many of us here believe we must approach it as a culture. The issue is far deeper than winning the battle of competing truth claims. Evangelizing Mormons calls for us to grasp and be sensitive to their identity as a people. - Ross Anderson, Roy, Utah


I am a "Mormon" WORLD subscriber, and would like to thank Bob Jones for "Melting the ice?" It was accurate and fair. I hope that the ice will continue to melt. - Rebecca M. Payne, Urbana, Ill.

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I was born and raised Mormon in small-town Utah and started a family in that state, but am now a Christian. Your article on the Mormon Olympics, I felt, helped the Mormons more than told the real story. Believe me when I say that any religion that teaches that we can become a god, and that Lucifer and Jesus are brothers, does not need our support in any way. - Burke Despain, Whitefish, Mont.

Looking alert

Thank you, WORLD, for alerting us to the latest attempts to "neuterize" and "neutralize"- as some would go so far as to say-the meaning of God's Word ("Word games," "Sad day," Feb. 16). The denomination of which I am a member and a pastor is already looking to another English version for the production of future hymnals, Sunday school lessons, and catechetical materials. Zondervan and IBS may indeed win this battle but lose the public-relations war, and with it future customers who will look to publishers they can trust. - David Daumer, Orange City, Iowa


"Sad day" by Marvin Olasky was exactly what I've come to expect from WORLD, inflammatory and scandalous. I'm deeply disturbed to hear the battle trumpets sounding again. - Lowe Bibby, Garner, N.C.

Boycott, anyone?

Joel Belz's piece on Zondervan's TNIV was very interesting and informative ("Word games"). However, the only way to combat such things is to hit Zondervan where it hurts: in the pocketbook. I intend to stop buying anything published by Zondervan until they decide to dump their plans to publish such a translation. - John Norton, Bossier City, La.

Whatever works

I am greatly distressed by your coverage of the TNIV, reflecting what I believe is a lack of fairness and an agenda that WORLD has in regard to Bible translations. WORLD even questions the integrity of IBS and Zondervan. Christian people work for these companies and need our support, not our boycotts. Let's get over this dispute and get on with teaching and preaching God's Word in whatever translation is best for us and our families. - Dan Longmore, Hunlock Creek, Pa.

Accurate in pink

I collect translations of the New Testament, but I doubt that I will add the TNIV to my collection (unless I find it at a garage sale). After reading "NIV's twisted sister" in the Feb. 9 issue, I picked up a small, pink volume from 1924 called The Centenary Translation of the New Testament. It was the first major English translation by a woman, Dr. Helen Barrett Montgomery (1861-1934), who was also the first American woman to serve as the president of a major denomination, the Northern Baptist Convention. I reviewed her handling of the verses listed in the article and found she had retained the masculine nouns and pronouns in every instance. Apparently, she did not need to compromise either her scholarship or the integrity of the biblical text to believe she was a recipient of God's grace and could serve Him effectively. - James Hickman, Worthington, Ohio


I read your article about the NIV's new "Twisted sister." Twisted is what this is. I intend to send my NIV Study Bible back to IBS and Zondervan with a gracious but firm note enclosed. - Ginger Hyatt, Nashville, Tenn.


I am offended that the International Bible Society and Zondervan would entertain the idea that women don't understand the generic use of male pronouns. We do not live in the dark ages, nor do we live in a Third World country where women are not taught to read, write, and comprehend. - Dolores Webb, Newfield, N.J.


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