Thoughts and Truth from the Impossible Life

A Comparison of Mormonism and Christianity

Evidence that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church or LDS) has a Christian Foundation

Compiled by Cal Fullerton

How can the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of Salt Lake City, Utah, live up to its claim to be a Christian organization when they teach so many eccentric and extra-biblical doctrines?

It is because the LDS does adhere to the essential message of the New Testament — not only the teachings that we all must adhere to for salvation in Christ (for example, “God exists”), but more significantly, teachings that effectuate, or bring about, salvation.

It is also because all their false teachings concern nonessential issues. Non-essentials are principles that may be important for spiritual growth but on which someone may be in error without losing their status as a forgiven, born-again, blood-bought, heaven-bound child of God.

The vital question is, “Does the Mormon Church encourage people to make Jesus Christ their personal Lord and Savior?” The answer is unequivocally yes.

Please take the crash course of fast facts below that show the Bible’s essential doctrines in juxtaposition to corresponding LDS doctrines. Key words are in dark red.

Bible
“‘Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved’” (Acts 16:31).
Mormon Church
Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is the first principle of the gospel. It is necessary to our salvation” (Gospel Principles [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1997], 117).“Salvation cometh to none . . . except it be through repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ” (Mosiah 3:12, Book of Mormon, quoted in Gospel Principles, 117).
Bible
“Unless you repent, you too will all perish” (Luke 13:5).
Mormon Church
“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: . . . second, Repentance (Joseph Smith, The Articles of Faith of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1:4).
Bible
“‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness’” (2 Timothy 2:19).
Mormon Church
“We must forsake our sins.” (Gospel Principles, 124).
Bible
“And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ” (Romans 8:9).
Mormon Church
“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: . . . fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith, 1:4).
Bible
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Romans 8:14 KJV).
Mormon Church
“It is the Spirit that is the most effective teacher in any given situation. . . . We should . . . carefully listen for and record the unspoken impressions given by the Holy Ghost” (Daniel K. Judd, “Nourished by the Good Word of God,” Ensign, Nov. 2007, 94-95). “The adversary labors to dull our sensitivity to the promptings of the Spirit. . . . When we invite the Holy Ghost to fill our minds. . . . we feel strengthened, filled with peace and joy. We possess spiritual energy and enthusiasm.” (Elder Keith K. Hilbig, “Quench Not the Spirit Which Quickens the Inner Man,” Ensign, Nov. 2007, 37- 38).
Bible
“If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God.” (1 John 4:15).
Mormon Church
“We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ” (Articles of Faith, 1:1).
Bible
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God” (1 John 5:1).
Mormon Church
Jesus is the Messiah (the Christ)” (Elder David B. Haight, “The Sacrament–and the Sacrifice,” Ensign, Apr. 2007, 16).
Bible
“This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God” (1 John 4:2).
Mormon Church
“‘The Word was made flesh’. . . . the Word is Jesus Christ” (James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981], 10). “‘[Jesus] shall come down from heaven among the children of men, and shall dwell in a tabernacle of clay’” (Mosiah 3:5, Book of Mormon, quoted in Gospel Principles, 63).
Bible
“This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 1:18).
Mormon Church
“And behold, he shall be born of Mary . . . she being a virgin . . . who shall be overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God” (Alma 7:10, Book of Mormon). “Jesus was born of a virgin named Mary” (Gospel Principles, 63).
Bible
“If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).
Mormon Church
“I know that he lives. . . . He is our Lord and our God” (President Joseph Fielding Smith, quoted in “He Lives! The Witness of Latter-day Prophets,” Ensign, Mar. 2008, 10).
Bible
“God presented him [Jesus] as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood” (Romans 3:25).
Mormon Church
“The Savior atoned for our sins by suffering in Gethsemane and by giving his life on the cross. . . . We accept Christ’s atonement by placing our faith in him” (Gospel Principles, 73, 75). “He [Jesus] took our sins upon himself” (Gospel Principles, 19).

Many of the Bible verses above tell us that you will be saved if you believe or do what the verses say. Therefore, the corresponding and agreeing LDS quotations give us evidence that the LDS is Christian.

If certain other Mormon teachings seem to contradict what has been spelled out here, our next move should be to interview LDS representatives–such as missionaries–and ask them, “Which is it? You can’t believe both.”

I can tell you that their other teachings do not contradict what they say in the above quotations–but don’t trust me! The Bible says, “Don’t put your trust in mere humans” (Isaiah 2:22, NLT). I suggest you do your own investigation and trust the Lord Jesus to guide you with His Holy Spirit.

Insurance Round

The following comparisons of Mormon beliefs to Bible verses constitute an insurance round–confirmations of the evidence already presented. For years, I personally confirmed and reviewed the Christian core of the LDS over and over again. I had to do this because my well-meaning fellow evangelicals as well as the devil himself tried to cause me to doubt what God had revealed to me.

Bible
“For by grace are ye saved
through faith; and that not of
yourselves: it is the gift of God”
(Ephesians 2:8 KJV).
Mormon Church
“The Apostle Paul taught that we
can’t save ourselves; we need
the Lord’s grace: [and then they
go on to quote the very Bible
verse I’ve quoted] ‘For by grace
are ye saved through faith; and
that not of yourselves: it is the
gift of God: Not of works, lest
any man should boast’” (no author,
“We Believe,” Ensign, Mar. 2008, 56).

 

Bible
All have sinned and fall short of
the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
Mormon Church
“Except for Jesus Christ . . .
everyone who has lived upon the
earth has sinned” (Gospel
Principles, 122).

 

Bible
“For what I received I passed on
to you as of first importance:
that Christ died for our sins
according to the Scriptures, that
he was buried, that he was raised
on the third day according to the
Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). Mormon Church
“The fundamental principles of
our religion are the testimony of
the Apostles and Prophets [of
the LDS], concerning Jesus
Christ, that He died, was buried,
and rose again the third day, and
ascended into heaven; and all
other things which pertain to our
religion are only appendages to
it” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph
Smith
, quoted in Spencer J. Condie, “The
Fall and Infinite Atonement,” Ensign,
Jan. 1996, 22).

 

 

To fully understand LDS people, we should know that they often redefine common Bible terms. This is why even direct quotations from official LDS publications can be deceptive and often are deceptive when anti-Mormon non-Mormons generate the quotations. I’ve done my best to avoid any such deception in the comparisons above (my knowledge of “Mormonese” enables me to do this).

 

 

Sources

Joseph Smith, The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, translated by Joseph Smith (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981) is used alongside the Bible as scripture.

All Scripture quotations above, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

Ensign is an official magazine of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Gospel Principles (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1997) is used in Sunday school classes.

James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981). James Talmage was one of the twelve apostles of the Church.

ORIGINAL POSTING SITE: http://evangelicalsandmormonsforjesus.com/fast-facts.htm

A Quadruple Combination of the (scriptures) of...

October 28, 2012 Posted by | Christianity / God, Mormon Christianity | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Catholic Church vs Christianity

The Catholic Church is just one branch of Christianity with some differences from most Protestant branches. These are additional books in their Bible that Martin Luther removed as part of the Protestant reformation. The Catholic Church also has the Pope who is considered to be the living head of ALL God‘s churches by Catholics. The other major difference is that the Catholic Church also assumed for itself the right to supersede anything in the bible by their believed authority as successor to Peter for whom Jesus had said he would build his church. An example of the use of this extra-biblical use of authority is the arbitrary changing of the day of worship from the Sabbath Day of Saturday (literally Sabbot) to Sunday to co-op the Sun Worshipers, the largest pagan group in competition for believers at the time. Of course, all Catholic Priests and all other Christian denominations KNOW that the day is suppose to be Saturday, not Sunday, but it remains solely based on Papal authority. Though, there is an extremely weak argument used about the Apostles being assembled together on the first day of the week to cover the contradiction of God’s Word by this change.

January 9, 2011 Posted by | Christianity / God | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Mormonism and Christianity

To see how Christianity is related to Mormonism, we must first define Christianity.

Jesus Christ in Book of Mormon

Christianity is defined by most people one of two ways:

1. Broad Definition: Christianity is a religion which preaches the divinity of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Christians also believe in the Atonement of Jesus Christ; that is, that He died for the sins of the world and by so he gave everyone the opportunity to be saved. Many people, Christian and non-Christian alike, accept this definition.

2. Narrow Definition: Christianity is a religion which accepts the beliefs set forth by the Nicene Creed, a statement of faith written in 325 AD and revised in 381 by a council of bishops. The creed was affirmed in 1974 by a group of religious leaders from around the world and resulted in a document called “The Lausanne Covenant“.[1] Together, these creeds acknowledge the doctrine of the Trinity as well as the competency and completeness of the Bible. Fundamentalist Christians generally accept this definition of Christianity.

Catholic and Protestant Denominations

There exist many different Christian denominations as well as a rapidly increasing number of “non-denominational” Christian churches, and more detailed, specific beliefs vary among these denominations. Upon stepping back, however, one can agree that despite many differences, the two groups have in common the belief that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that it is by learning and accepting such that one might be excused from his or her mistakes in this life and be saved in the life to come. In most cases, both Catholics and Protestants accept the Nicene Creed. Both are clearly Christian religions.

Mormonism and the Broad Definition of Christianity

Let us now consider Mormonism: Joseph Smith, the man who organized the religion explained that: “The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and the Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it.” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 121).

Mormons believe that it is through the testimonies of modern-day prophets as well as those of ancient-prophets (contained in the scriptures) that one can learn more about Jesus Christ and thereby gain his or her own assurance that He is truly God’s son and the Savior of all mankind. It is, then, by following the example of Jesus Christ and trying to live like Him that Mormons believe they can be forgiven of their sins and live with God after this life.

Another evidence of Mormons’ foundational belief in Jesus Christ is the very name of the church. The Mormon church is officially named The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and it is believed that it is the same exact church as was established by Jesus Christ Himself during His time on the earth. As we read in the Bible, Jesus established a certain organization within His church: He called prophets, twelve apostles, missionaries, and other leaders as were needed in order to teach His doctrine throughout surrounding cities and countries and create a church with a firm foundation. Mormons believe that Jesus Christ has reestablished the same church through Joseph Smith. In the same way that He led Peter, James, John, Paul, and other prophets after His ascension to heaven–that is, through revelation–He continues to lead His church today, through the prophet Thomas S. Monson and the twelve apostles.

Not only, then, do Mormons believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of us all, but they also believe that His ongoing teachings can be heeded and followed today as He is believed to be the very head of the Mormon church. Mormonism, then, can indeed be called a Christian religion. And just as there are differences between the specific beliefs in each and every Christian sect, the differences in Mormonism in no way affect its being founded on the doctrine of Jesus Christ. To embrace Mormonism, then, is clearly to embrace Christianity, as defined by the broad definition.

Mormonism and the Narrow Definition of Christianity

Mormons do not accept either the Nicene Creed or the Lausanne Covenant. They do not believe in the doctrine of the Trinity, but instead believe in a Godhead of three personages, God the Father, God the Son, and the Holy Ghost, who are one in purpose but separate physical entities John 17:11, 21-23. [2] They believe the Bible to be the revelations of God to man, and believe the Bible to be the word of God, “as far as it is translated correctly.” Mormons believe God has always desired and continues to desire to speak to mankind. Thus, they have more scripture and expect to receive more scripture.

Mormons contend, however, that acceptance of the Nicene Creed should not be the standard for defining a person as a “Christian” as the implications of being “unchristian” extend beyond lack of acceptance of the Nicene Creed. Being “unchristian” implies not believing in the teachings of Jesus Christ and living one’s life in a manner that Christ would not approve of.

October 23, 2010 Posted by | Mormon Christianity | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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