To the Editor,
As a believing, practicing-to-the best-of-my-ability Latter-Day Saint, I was very disturbed by a recent Opinions piece, “More blessed than thou”. Its author, Russ Adler, speaks as though his ideas are representative of the doctrine and attitudes of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. His thesis, “the closer to God you are, the richer you become, and.the richer you are, the closer to God you are,” does not represent accurately the doctrine, practices, or beliefs of members of the Church. If there are members of the Church who believe or practice this ideology, they are out of touch with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The author of this piece appears to be referencing a Book of Mormon doctrine that those who keep the commandments of God are prospered (1 Nephi 2:20). Hence, the requirement to give ten percent of our income and do our very best to take care of the poor, both as an institution, and as individual members of the Church. This is our standard, as found in The Book of Mormon: “Think of your brethren like unto yourselves, and be familiar with all and free with your substance, that they may be rich like unto you. But before ye seek for riches, seek ye for the kingdom of God. And after ye have obtained a hope in Christ ye shall obtain riches, if ye seek them; and ye will seek them for the intent to do good – to clothe the naked, and to feed the hungry, and to liberate the captive, and administer relief to the sick and the afflicted.” (Jacob 2:17-19)
-Paul J. Kohler