About the Cowans
The Cowans were appointed by Missions Door as church-planting missionaries to Utah in 1961. After starting and pastoring churches for several years, they wanted to do more to evangelize Mormons and help other Christians become more effective in reaching them. To accomplish that, Marv has taught seminars on witnessing to Mormons and he and others launched Utah Christian Publications, which he oversees.
As part of that ministry he wrote and published books and tracts that show the difference between Mormonism and the Bible. UCP makes those available with other good books, tapes, videos, DVDs, etc., that provide help in witnessing to Mormons.
Marv’s relatives were Mormon pioneers in the Salt Lake area. His parents were sealed to each other and to their children for eternity in a Mormon temple ceremony. Marv served as a deacon and teacher in the LDS Aaronic priesthood before being confronted with the biblical Gospel as a teenager.
After receiving Christ as Savior, Marv graduated from Denver Seminary with an M.Div., and in 1987 Western Seminary conferred an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree on him.
Jan was raised in a Christian home and received Christ as a young girl. She has always been a vital part of their entire ministry in Utah.
Marv and Jan met at a church near her home where he was a student pastor while in college. They were married in 1956 and have four grown children: David, Cynthia, Kimberly and James.
Marv has a M.Div. and D.D.
About Utah Christian Publications
Utah Christian Publications is exactly what its name suggests. It provides Christian publications for those who want more information about the unique culture and beliefs of Utah which is dominated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons). Although Mormon headquarters are in Utah, Mormonism is all over the world. Christians who live among Mormons or are dealing with Mormonism in their family or with acquaintances need to understand Mormonism as well as Christianity if they want to share their faith effectively with them. Mormons also need to understand Christianity better since they want to be included with other Christian churches. In recent years LDS leaders have claimed that Mormonism is Christianity and they have sought to be included in church and ministerial councils along with other Christian churches. That is an enigma in the light of the origin of Mormonism as well as their current claims.
Mormons believe that after the death of Christ’s apostles, the church He established became universally apostate (extinct) and remained that way for seventeen or eighteen hundred years (see The Great Apostasy by LDS Apostle James Talmage; History of the Church, vol. I, Introduction pp.39-41). LDS believe that in 1820, God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to fourteen year old Joseph Smith and called him to be a prophet and that ended the long period of universal apostasy (Pearl of Great Price, Joseph Smith-History 1:14-20). Thus, Joseph Smith restored “the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth” (Doctrine & Covenants 1:30). But they believe that the apostasy still continues in all other churches which are really “apostate Christendom” (Mormon Doctrine, p. 131). That is one reason Mormonism has over 60,000 Mormon missionaries who compass sea and land proselyting over 300,000 converts each year, primarily from other churches. That proselyting effort alone should cause thinking people to realize that there must be a big difference between Mormonism and Christianity or the LDS wouldn’t spend so much time, money and effort on it.
Utah Christian Publications responds to Mormon claims and activities from a Biblical, historical and scientific perspective. Our material is not an attack upon Mormonism but a response to the attack Mormonism has made upon historic, Biblical Christianity. We also respond to the unique claims Mormonism makes for itself (i.e. that it is a restoration of the one true church). We know that there are many people in the Mormon Church who are sincerely trying to serve God. But sincerity alone does not make one right. And when it comes to where we spend eternity, it is imperative that we are right in what we believe and do!
– Marvin W. Cowan