Evangelists visit BYU, Temple Square
Eighteen Bible students from the evangelical Bible Institute of Los Angeles, Biola, visited BYU campus Tuesday to build friendships, develop relationships and clarify doctrine.
"It's important that other organizations understand each other, get a basic understanding and be willing to listen to each other," said Julie Ann Johnson, 23, a BYU linguistics major, from Denver, Colo.
"This trip is based on talking about differences and more importantly getting to know what you believe," said Arnold Sergstad, 20, a student at Biola.
On Tuesday, the Biola group attended classes at BYU, such as LDS Marriage and Family and Book of Mormon. They also had the opportunity to hear President and Sister Samuelson speak in the Devotional. In the evening, they attended a dinner and discussion at a lodge in Aspen Grove.
After a history of contention and Bible bashing in the past, the Evangelicals and Latter-day Saints have decided to rebuild the bridges which had burned down.
"It's time to put away the sticks and stones and do some serious talking," said Robert Millet, an ancient scripture professor.
The group had studied a bit about the LDS faith and read the Book of Mormon prior to coming to Utah.
"We knew we had to change," said Jason Lekas, 24, a Biola humanities graduate. "We were digging up potholes and not fixing the road, and then Utah had to deal with the backlash. We had to change our approach. We would like the LDS to know that we love them and seek to understand and pursue truth together."
Millet and Pastor Greg Johnson, director of Standing Together Ministries in Utah, are trying to develop relationships between the two groups in a new way.
"We are trying to show the upcoming generation that we don't have to be confrontational on truth," Johnson said. "There is a lot of room for us to build on our compromise of scriptures" (Foss,"Daily Universe," 21 Jan 2005, BYU News Net).
[TBC: And "build" they will on their "compromise of scriptures"!! Furthermore, what "bridges" do our upcoming evangelical generation need to build to a church founded upon the imaginative lies of a 19th century con man and his blasphemous gospel? The deceived followers of Joseph Smith need to be set free by the truth, not further deluded by imagining that their "theology" has something to offer."]