Decker et al vs. the Tanners et al
If you are wondering why the Tanners, two of the most prominent anti-Mormon researchers and publishers, are publishing things which expose Ed Decker as a LIAR, then I'll tell you.
Today (2002 A.D.), anti-Mormons and their followers fall into two opposing "camps": the Deckerites and the Tannerites. The Deckerites are the followers of Ed Decker and his "camp". The Tannerites are the followers of Jerald and Sandra Tanner and their "camp". The Deckerites believe Decker and read "The God Makers" books and other Decker books and tracts. The Tannerites read "Mormonism: Shadow or Reality?" and other Tanner books and publications.
The Deckerites are, how do I say this, rather "simplistic" in their view of Mormonism. They think it is part of a worldwide Luciferian/Masonic/Mormon conspiracy; to take over the world and prepare it for the End-Times Anti-Christ. They believe Mormon leaders are Mafia-like murderers who openly worship Lucifer while rank-and-file Mormons are liars and hypocrites and dupes, that Lucifer is the god of Mormonism, etc.
The Tannerites, on the other hand, are a bit more sophisticated. Tannerites include more intellectual Evangelicals, as well as quite a few Agnostics and Atheists. There are also quite a few "Liberal" Mormons in the Tannerite camp; who see all religion as more or less "man-made" The Liberal Mormons (often called "Sunstone Mormons") don't want the Church destroyed; just "changed" from within. They see themselves as "agents of change". Quite a few of them actually work for the Church as lower-level managers; as a means to "change-from-within". The Evangelicals among the Tannerites see Mormonism as just a false religion; founded by a charlatan. They see Mormons as sincere, but deceived. They don't see Mormon leaders are "evil" men, but not that good either.
The Deckerites and Tannerites used to basically co-operate with each other; at least yearly during a yearly anti-Mormon conference called "Capstone"; held in Salt Lake City or sometimes Park City, Utah. Each year anti-Mormons would give lectures, and new publications or films would be promoted.
However, the Tannerites also thought of the Deckerites as "boobs" and "conspiracy-nuts" and "simpletons". On the other hand, the Deckerites have always considered the Tannerites to be "deceived" because they did not see the worldwide Luciferian/Satanic conspiracy like the Deckerites did.
In the mid-1980s, James Spencer (an ex-Mormon) and William Schnoebelen (an ex-Mormon and Associate Director of Saints Alive in Jesus) wrote a book titled Mormonism's Temple of Doom. In the book they claimed to show how the Mormon Endowment Ceremony was taken "bodily" from occultic Witchcraft rituals. They also claimed to show that the very architecture of the Salt Lake Temple was occultic and Satanic.
Spencer and Schnoebelen began to promote their new book, and lectured and appeared on various Evangelical radio talk shows.
Schnoebelen began claiming that when he and his wife first went to the Temple they were taught three Hebrew words, and they later discovered, to their horror, that those three Hebrew words meant in Hebrew: "O WONDERFUL LUCIFER!" Later, in a meeting with Mormon Apostle James Faust, Bill's wife said, "Lucifer is the god of the Mormon Temple isn't he?" Elder Faust is supposed to have said in reply, "Flesh and blood hath not revealed this to you! You are correct!" Realizing they had joined a Lucifer-worshipping cult, they left Mormonism and became born-again Christians....Praise the Lord!
Many Tannerites began to hear about the claims of Schnoebelen and Spencer. Many of the Tannerites were quite intellectual and sophisticated people; many of them did their own research. Many were quite well-read and highly educated. They KNEW that the Mormon Endowment Ceremony had many close parallels to Freemasonic rites, but NOT to witchcraft rituals as Spencer and Schnoebelen were saying.
Many Tannerites (some of these Liberal Mormons) KNEW that the three Hebrew words Mormons chanted in the old Endowment ceremony DID NOT MEAN "O Wonderful Lucifer!" They started writing and calling the Tanners, saying: "What are you gonna do about this?"
The Tanners decided to write a reply to the claims of Spencer and Schnoebelen. They basically wrote:
*The Three Hebrew Words in the Endowment ceremony DO NOT mean "O Wonderful Lucifer!" but "Hear [my]Mouth [O] God" in Sephardic Hebrew. [For a full treatment of this syubject see Appendix 'A' in Ronnie Bray's "Images of Hate - Ministers of Fear" in which the Hebrew meaning is unfolded]
*Claims that the Signs and Tokens in the Mormon Endowment Ceremony came from Witchcraft are FALSE.
*There is no evidence that the architecture of Mormon Temples is based upon anything known as "Satanic architecture". This is an invention by William Schnoebelen's Mormonism's Temple of Doom, which is often contradictory, misleading, or false.
Instead of James Spencer and Bill Schnoebelen withdrawing their claims, they made new claims! They began claiming that Jerald and Sandra Tanner, authors of scores of anti-Mormon books, and whose research MOST of The God Makers book is based upon, were "secret agents working for the Mormon Church".
Ed Decker stood by his associates! He came out squarely on the side of Spencer and Schnoebelen. After all, Bill Schnoebelen was the Associate Director of Saints Alive in Jesus.
Decker accepted the claim that the three Hebrew words Mormons chant in the Mormon Endowment Ceremony meant "O Wonderful Lucifer!'; thereby proof that Mormons was unknowingly worshipping Lucifer in Mormon Temples. To substantiate this claim Decker asked the Rev. Wesley P. Walters, an anti-Mormon researcher who had studied Hebrew for 3 years in seminary.
Jerald Tanner writes what happened next:
"Unfortunately, Decker could not get over the sensationalistic claim that the words [phonetically] 'pay lay ale' actually meant 'Wonderful Lucifer'.
He called Wesley P. Walters, who was one of the most knowledgeable critics of the LDS Church, and asked his opinion on the matter.
Walters, who had also studied the Hebrew language, examined the claim and responded by frankly telling Mr. Decker that the idea could not be supported from the Hebrew language. According to Walters, Decker then stated that he did not care and was going to use the argument anyway." (Problems in The God Makers II, p.49)
With the publication by the Tanners, the lines began to be drawn.
Soon, James Spencer was claiming that Jerald and Sandra Tanner weren't Christian researchers on Mormonism after all, but "secret agents" hired and directed by Mormon Church leaders as way of "controlling" (watering-down) anti-Mormon claims. This was why the Tanners rejected the worldwide Luciferian/Masonic/Mormon conspiracy; because they were part of it!
Other Deckerites, such as Loftes Tryk (an ex-Mormon, he says, and an anti-Mormon writer) began saying that the Tanners were "demonized secret agents" working for the Mormon Church. ]This claim is typical of the insane things Tryk wrotes]
Jerald and Sandra Tanner produced several publications which not only refuted the absurd claims Decker/Spencer/Schnoebelen, but exposed Bill Schnoebelen as an ABSOLUTE PATHOLOGICAL-LIAR AND FRAUD. These publications are:
*The Lucifer-God Doctrine (90 pages)
*Covering-up Syn (one of their Salt Lake Messenger newsletters)
*Serious Charges Against the Tanners (44 pages)
Covering-up Syn can be read online. The other two publications can be purchased online from Utah Lighthouse Ministries for $4 and $1 (plus shipping and handling) respectively.
Decker stood squarely behind Spencer and Schnoebelen, and against the Tanners. After all, at that time Bill Schnoebelen was the Associate Director of Saints Alive in Jesus. This was a rather contradictory thing to do; since 75% of The God Makers book was based upon research by the Tanners. Indeed, The God Makers book plagiarized much of the Tanners' book Mormonism: Shadow or Reality?.
Decker featured Sandra Tanner in The God Makers film as a "renowned researcher" on Mormonism. Much of The God Makers was based upon Tanner research. Now, Ed Decker, and Pat Matrisciana (president of Jeremiah Films who produced The God Makers and other anti-Mormon films by Decker) were calling the Tanners "liars".
During this time, Decker wrote:
"They [the Tanners] want to put the Matriscianas and me out of business. Well, it isn't going to happen, Jerald and Sandra. Not by your kind of cheap journalistic claptrap. If this is the way the Tanners go about all their research, I've got a lot of Mormons to apologize to and so does Pat [Matrisciana]."
"Either the Tanners are the greatest dupes in the business, or bald-faced liars." (Saints Alive in Jesus newsletter, March-April 1993)
Ed later sent this letter to Jeff Crane:
"I have to apologize to every Mormon I have ever shared Tanner materials with. I have even used it heavily in my own research and publications, writings, films. I had always thought the Tanners to be exacting researchers and without a real axe to grind. No more. What has happened is that they have manipulated data to make it say what they want it to say in order to defame someone they want to destroy. If they would do it to Ed Decker, or Jim Spencer, or Bill Schnoebelen and we are others can see it, then what does it say about their reporting on Mormonism? Therefore, I have to apologize and will have to re-evaluate a whole lot of what we did with their material." (letter quoted in Problems in The God Makers II,, pp.52-3)
The only way to "not use" the Tanners material would be to recall all copies of The God Makers book and do a complete rewrite without using their research. However, since 75% of The God Makers book was taken bodily from the Tanner's Mormonism: Shadow or Reality?, this would essentially mean scrapping the book and writing a completely new one. This was never done.
A new "expanded edition" of The God Makers book was published by Harvest House; with all the Tanner materials unchanged. Indeed, additional materials were used which came straight from new Tanner newsletters, but without the unwary Reader knowing this.
The Tanners DID prove that much of the materials in The God Makers book was taken bodily from their work, Mormonism: Shadow or Reality?" as if someone cut-up the Tanner's book, pasted the pages on cardboard, then mixed the cardboards up (to try to hide the plagiarism), and then wrote The God Makers from the cardboards; only adding comments and additional materials (like a Luciferian/Masonic/Mormon conspiracy-theory) here and there.
In other words, whoever wrote The God Makers book plagiarized heavily from the Tanner's book (Mormonism: Shadow or Reality?), tried to hide it, then included comments and additional information here and there from Decker and co-author Dave Hunt.
Later, Decker claimed that the Tanners were either dupes, secret agents hired by the Mormon Church to "control" anti-Mormon research, or "bald-faced liars". Decker wrote that the Tanner materials could not be trusted, yet, he continues to produce hundreds of thousands of copies of The God Makers.
Decker claimed that while he was in Scotland, preaching against the Masons (or Morons...the story changes with the audience) the Masons (or Mormons) had tried to poison him (kill him) with arsenic in a glass a Coca-Cola. According to his own claims, a man he did not know gave him a glass of Coca-Cola at a Pizza parlour. He drank it, but soon afterwards he became quite ill; vomiting, in violent convulsions, so much so that he was taken to an emergency room THAT NIGHT and it was discovered that he had been given "7 times the lethal dose of arsenic". Although given seven times the lethal dose, he survived (Praise the Lord!).
Decker was on the Phil Donahue television show in 1991, and Donahue said:
Donahue: "Ed Decker was a Mormon for 19 years. After speaking out against the Mormon Church, he claims, Mr. Decker does, that he was shot at and even poisoned. He believes Mormon followers are responsible for the actions against him. Now, Ed, I mentioned a few times that the fact that you had been shot at twice. Has anyone been arrested in those cases?"
Decker: "No, my wife and I were shot at in our bedroom in the middle of the night."
Donahue: "It is an established fact that indeed a shooting did take place?"
Decker: "OH YEAH! I was poisoned with arsenic! I have the doctor's reports, the urine tests, and the blood test." (Problems in The God Makers II, Appendix B)
Decker told Donahue that the "Mormon followers" were responsible for the shots fired and for the poisoning in Scotland! Yet, on a Mormon radio program in Salt Lake City in 1992, Decker says it was the "Masons" who tried to poison him. Ed said:
"It wasn't the LDS Church that I was dealing with at the time. It wasn't even the Mormons that were involved in the poisoning." (Martin Tanner Radio Show, July 19, 1992, quoted in Problems in The God Makers II, Appendix B)
In truth, Decker was in Scotland to preach against Mormonism and against Freemasonry. Scotland has comparatively few Mormons, but a lot of Masons, and Knight Templars. Ed was telling Evangelical Christian groups there that 32nd and 33rd Degree Masons "secretly worship Lucifer" and then lie about this openly. Ed has claimed that 32 degree Scottish Rite Masons knowingly worship Lucifer, but Masons less high don't know this, etc. Along with Saints Alive (his anti-Mormon ministry), Decker also has an anti-Masonic ministry called "Free the Masons Ministries". When preaching against Freemasonry, he tells a story on how the Masons in Scotland tried to poison him by putting "7 times the lethal dose" or arsenic in his coke at a Pizza parlour.
However, on the Phil Donahue show, and in other places, when Ed is preaching against the LDS Church, he blames the poisoning on "Mormons".
The "truth" is that there was neither poisoning nor a poisoning attempt. The "man" whom Decker insinuated put poison in his Coke refill did not get Ed's refill; the waitress did. There was no rush to the Emergency Room! There was no stomach pumping. There was no "7 times" the lethal dose of arsenic in his blood! Decker's symptoms were consistent with the side-effects of the medication he was then taking for arthritis. His arsenic level was normal. He simply "invented" this story as a way to present himself as a "brave Christian soldier" whom the Lord miraculously saves. Why? In order to get more money from Evangelicals; who believe every word of what Decker tells them!
Who shot Decker's bedroom window? I don't know. But I don't believe it was a "Mormon". At about the same time Decker's window was shot by a high-velocity bullet, the same kind of bullet hit the statue of Moroni, on the top of the Seattle Temple, several times. Why would a Mormon wish to shot a statue of Moroni on the Seattle Temple? Of course, an anti-Mormon would have good reason to shoot a bullet through Ed's bedroom window; without Ed being there or anyone hurt; so as to get MILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF FREE ADVERTISING for Ed and Saints Alive via local secular press and national "Christian" press!
And IT WORKED!
In 1990 Jerald Tanner, the most prominent anti-Mormon researcher in the world, wrote a letter to Ed Decker. Here are excerpts:
"Now that you have indicated you are willing to provide information concerning the poisoning, I am making the request directly to you...I also have questions concerning related matters...To being with, there is more involved here than the arsenic poisoning story. In a tape...dated July 25, 1988, you claimed that the year 1986 was a very bad year for you. You stated,
'...God showed me that I was in for a time of attack, and the next year I suffered three coronaries, I was poisoned twice, and at least one gunman that they caught was dressed in battle fatigues...I'm not going to hide. I'm not going to stop what I'm doing...if you want to try to kill me, then try it, because I'm not going to go inside some place and hide from you.'
In additional to all these troubles...you reported..
The day after Capstone [the anti-Mormon conference in Utah] I came down with Legionnaires' Disease.'
In addition to all this, I understand that you have stated that the Mormons have tried to kill you THREE TIMES before you were poisoned in 1986." (Jerald Tanner to Ed Decker, August 11, 1990, quoted in Problems in The God Makers III,, p.81)
Jerald Tanner wanted answers; dates, times, names, so he could check-out Decker's claims. Why? Because the Tannerites (the Tanner's tens of thousands of sophisticated readers and followers) were demanding it. Also, because Decker and the Deckerites were "dissing" (disrespecting) the Tanners because the Tanners severely criticized Bill Schnoebelen and his book Mormonism’s' Temple of Doom. It was "tit-for-tat" time!
Ed Decker never responded to Jerald Tanner's request for references. Instead, Jerald Tanner received a copy of a letter from the Board of Directors of Saints Alive in Jesus to Ed Decker, which read in part:
"...it is the instruction of the Board of Directors that you refrain from any further discussion with the Tanners and their organization...and any affiliated persons associated with that organization." (ibid.)
Decker WANTS to provide names/dates by the way, but the Board of Directors has tied his hands. What can he do but obey them? The fact that Decker is Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Ex-Mormon for Jesus Evangelical Association (the legal name of Saints Alive in Jesus) seems not to matter much.
Decker presents himself as a brave and heroic Christian soldier in battle with the "Great Red Dragon" (the Luciferian/Masonic/Mormon worldwide conspiracy). He's been shot at three times, poisoned twice, came down with Legionnaires’ Disease (hint: the Mormon Church has biological warfare specialists), but, instead of going into hiding, he comes out boldly saying, "Here I am, come get me!" WOW! What a brave and heroic Christian soldier isn't he? The all-powerful Mormon Church has tried to kill him in umpteen ways for DECADES and they can't seem to succeed. Surely, the Lord is protecting this "Man of God"! He wants Evangelicals to believe this, and MILLIONS do!
Can you spell d-u-p-e-s?