By: Rev Ed Schneider
Recently it has come up again and again concerning the question, “Is Mormonism, or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Christianity?” To answer the question clearly I would have to say, “OBVIOUSLY, no.”
Now that I have stated this conclusion, let it be clear, I am NOT saying the LDS religion fosters bad, unethical, or immoral people. That would not only be unfair it would also be untrue. Even though many Mormons will tell questioning Christians, “Of course we’re Christians; Jesus Christ is right there in our name….isn’t it?”
First, the bible reminds us that not every one who says, “Lord, Lord!” (Referring to Jesus ) is actually a Christian. (Matthew 7:21-23) This can also be extended to those who attend a local Christian congregation. The truth is many people who attend a local Christian congregation only claim Christ…in name only. What they say they believe is all but absent from the realty of their lives.
Christ in name only is no Christ at all!
There are many reasons why The Church of Jesus Christ AND Latter Day Saints is not Christian. Here are just a few.
The reason Mormonism is not Christian is that it denies one or more of the essential doctrines of Christianity.
Basic….foundational….core Christian teaching must include the following essential biblical doctrines. Otherwise it is rejected as honest Christianity.
THE LIST INCLUDES…..
- There is only one God in all existence (Exodus 20:1-4; Isaiah 43:10; 45:5).
- Jesus is divine (John 1:1, 8:24; Col. 2:9)
- Forgiveness of sins is by grace alone without works (Eph. 2:8-9; Rom. 3:28; 4:1-5)
- Jesus rose from the dead physically (John 2:19-21; Luke 24:39)
- The foundational expression of “the gospel” must include the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus (1 Cor. 15:1-4)
MORMONISM DENIES ALL OF THESE!
Mormonism denies that there is only one God in all existence and also denies the forgiveness of sins alone in Christ alone. Therefore, it is outside Christianity. It is not a Christian religion.
Mormonism teaches “God the Father” has a body of flesh and bones (D. & C. 130:22) and that Jesus was actually sexually produced in heaven as one of God’s spirit children (See the book, Jesus the Christ, by James Talmage, p. 8).
This is in strict contrast to the biblical teaching that he is;
- God in flesh (John 1:1, 14),
- eternal yet born on earth (Col. 1:15), and
- the creator of all (John 1:3; Col. 1:16-17).
Though Mormons are taught that Jesus is God in flesh, they distinctly instructed that he is merely “a” god in flesh. Mormons are taught Jesus is one of the 3 gods that collectively make up the offices of the Trinity (Articles of Faith, by Talmage, pp. 35-40).
These three gods are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. This is in direct contradiction of the biblical doctrine that there is only one God (Isaiah 43:10; 44:6, 8; 45:5).
Because Mormonism denies the biblical truth of;
- who God is,
- who Jesus is,
- how forgiveness of sins is attained, and
- what the gospel is,
Mormonism may be a fine religion….as religions go….but it is certainly not Christianity!
Mormon theology teaches God is only one of many gods. They teach that God, as he is described within LDS teaching, used to be a man on another planet and that he only was able to become a “god” by following the laws and ordinances of “that god” on “that world,” and…. I TRUELY LAUGH AT THIS ONE….that “god” brought one of his wives to this world with whom he produces spirit children who then inhabit human bodies at birth.
- The first spirit child to be born was Jesus.
- Second (although this is argued against among some LDS members) was Satan, and then
- the rest of us all followed.
In contrast, the Bible says there is only one God (Isaiah 43:10; 44:6, 8; 45:5), and that God has been The Creator of all that is known and unknown eternally (Psalm 90:2)–which means he was never a man on another planet.
Since the Bible denies the existence of other gods (and goddesses–there is a mother goddess in Mormonism), the idea that Jesus is the product of a god and goddess couple having sex is void of any logic outside of the attempt at the founders of Mormonism trying to repackage Greek and Roman mythology on an unsuspecting audience.
The Bible itself completely rejects this nonsense concerning “the Jesus” of Mormonism. Therefore, faith in the “Mormon Jesus” is faith misplaced because the Mormon Jesus simply does not exist!
Another very important difference between Christianity and Mormonism concerns the nature of Jesus’ death on the cross.
Mormonism teaches that the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross itself (and receiving it by faith) is not sufficient to bring forgiveness of sins. Mormonism teaches that the forgiveness of sins is obtained though a cooperative effort with God. What I mean by that is…. “believers” must be good and follow prescribed laws and ordinances of the Mormon church in order to obtain forgiveness.
The highly respected author and LDS apostle, the late James Talmage, said, “The sectarian dogma of justification by faith alone has exercised an influence for evil,” (Articles of Faith, p. 432), and “Hence the justice of the scriptural doctrine that salvation comes to the individual only through obedience,” (Articles of Faith, p. 81).
This teaching by one of the pillars of the LDS movement is the exact opposite of foundational biblical teaching associated with the “forgiveness of sins” by grace through faith ALONE. (Rom. 3:28; 5:1; 6:23; Eph. 2:8-9)
This teaching is in direct contradiction to the doctrine that works are not part of becoming salved (Rom. 4:1-5) but a result of them (James 2:14-18).
To further confuse the matter, Mormonism states that salvation is has two separate and distinct levels. Mormonism teaches that salvation is both forgiveness of sins and universal resurrection.
This is a BIG ERROR.
When any Mormon speaks of salvation by grace, he is usually referring to universal resurrection. But the Bible speaks of salvation as the forgiveness of sins–not universal resurrection.
Where Mormonism states that forgiveness of sins is not by faith alone (2 Nephi 25:23; Moroni 10:32), the Bible does teach it is by faith alone (Rom. 3:28; 4:1-5).
Both cannot be true.
Now let’s talk about Mormonism and their view of the Bible
An example of this would be in the 8th Article of Faith of the Mormon Church, where it states, “We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly.” This means that when the Bible contradicts Mormonism, the Bible isn’t trustworthy.
This allows the LDS to say and teach whatever they want even when it contradicts scripture.
So, in conclusion let me say….again….Mormonism is not Christian because;
- it denies the oneness of God,
- It denies the true Gospel,
- adds works to salvation,
- denies that Jesus’ divine nature
- It distorts the biblical teaching of the atonement,
- undermines the authority and reliability of the Bible,
- says God used to be a man who came from another planet,
- that all true believers can become gods,
- And my favorite example, there is a goddess mother in heaven.
I present this basic research to you not to condemn the Mormon faith or the millions of people who adhere to its teaching. Again, that would be wrong.
However, as easily as the examples above have found and demonstrated, it is just as easy to remind all Christian believers that just like Jewish people or Buddhists or Hindus or Muslims or any number of other religions…just because they practice their faith with a “spiritual” sincerely doesn’t make them any other than they already are….NON-Christian. The same can and should be said for The Church of Latter Day Saints. Mormons are not Christian.
Hopefully this will address many of the questions I have been receiving lately on the subject. Peace.