Friday, April 20, 2007

Mormonism Isn't Christian

How dare we make such a bold claim; and, how rude and unChristian! Well, do we make that claim to be mean, or because we have a "bone to pick?" 1 John 4:1 says: Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 1 Thes 5:21 says: Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. So, we are being quite Biblical in comparing Mormon doctrines to see if they align with the Bible. Let's compare Mormonism to the "Eight Essential Fundamentals of Christianity":

1. The Deity of Christ
2. Trinity
3. Bodily Resurrection
4. Salvation by Grace
5. Sufficiency of Scripture
6. Universality of Sin
7. The Atonement
8. The Virgin Birth

So, how many of the eight does Mormonism agree with: ZERO!

We don't make open-ended statements, so here is the evidence to back up our claim that Mormonism doesn't line up with the "Eight Essential Fundamentals of Christianity":

1. Deity of Christ: “Jesus became a God and reached His great state of understanding through consistent effort and continuous obedience to all the Gospel truths and universal laws.” (The Gospel Through The Ages, pg 51)

[Christianity does not believe Jesus was “a God;” Christianity believes Jesus was God: John 1:1.]

2. Trinity: “22. The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us.” (Doctrine and Covenants 130:22)

“God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret.” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith pg 345, 1844)

[Christianity believes in the Trinity – Mormonism believes in three Gods of this world and that there are an untold number of other Gods out there in the cosmos; and, that the Heavenly Father of this world is an exalted man who once lived on another planet in another galaxy far, far away and through eternal progression rose to become a God]

3. Bodily Resurrection: “The plan is simple. Man is in a fallen condition, beset with weaknesses and sin. Means are provided whereby he may rise, and, through the corridors of death and the portals of the resurrection, reach the way of eternal progression. These means are all comprised in obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.” (The Vitality of Mormonism, Ch.19, p.77-p.78, Apostle James E. Talmage)

[Christianity believes man will be resurrected to live eternally with Jesus Christ or to be condemned to Hell. Mormonism believes there is no Hell and man will be resurrected into 3 different Kingdoms of Heaven. Only Mormons can go to the top kingdom, called the Celestial Kingdom, and there they can by “Eternal Progression” become Gods just like the Mormon Heavenly Father of this earth did.]

4. Salvation by Grace: “However, one of the untrue doctrines found in modern Christendom is the concept that man can gain salvation (meaning in the kingdom of God) by grace alone and without obedience. This soul-destroying doctrine has the obvious effect of lessening the determination of an individual to conform to all of the laws and ordinances of the gospel,…” (Mormon Doctrine, pp. 670-671, 1958)

[Salvation by grace alone, in Christ alone, through faith alone, is a foundational Christian teaching. Mormon Apostle Bruce McConkie in his epic book “Mormon Doctrine” calls the Christian belief an “untrue” and “soul-destroying doctrine.”]

5. Sufficiency of Scripture: “Who, in his right mind, could, for one moment, suppose the Bible in its present form to be a perfect guide? Who knows that even one verse of the Bible has escaped pollution?” (Divine Authenticity of the Book of Mormon, Orson Pratt, pg 47)

[Christianity believes the Bible is God’s inerrant Word for man. Mormonism believes the Bible “as far as it is translated correctly.” Anytime the Bible disagrees with Mormon Doctrine, it has been mistranslated, and “Who knows that even one verse of the Bible has escaped pollution?”]

6. Universality of sin: “Some may regret that our first parents sinned. This is nonsense. If we had been there, and they had not sinned, we should have sinned. I will not blame Adam or Eve, why? Because it was necessary that sin should enter the world; no man could ever understand the principle of exaltation without its opposite;…” (Journal of Discourses, Vol 10, pg 312, Brigham Young)

[Christianity teaches that all have sinned and in fact have a sin nature. Christianity teaches that the heart of man is wickedly deceitful (Jer 17:9), and all of our righteousness is as “filthy rags” (Isa 64:6), and only through our Savior, the Jesus Christ of the Bible, can we be saved from our sin. Mormonism teaches that Adam and Eve were required to eat of the fruit of the tree and it was not therefore a sin – that man is good and comes to earth to prove himself and earn his right to progress to become a God himself.]

7. The Atonement: “It is true that the blood of the Son of God was shed for sins through the fall and those committed by men, yet men can commit sins which it can never remit.” (Journal of Discourses, Vol 4, pg 54, Brigham Young)

[Christianity teaches that the blood of Jesus covers all sin (1 John 1:7). Mormonism believes man can commit sins which Jesus’ blood can never remit.]

8. The Virgin Birth: “These name-titles all signify that our Lord is the only Son of the Father in flesh. Each of the words is to be understood literally. Only means only; Begotten means begotten; and Son means son. Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.” (Mormon Doctrine, 1966, pp. 546-547)

[Christianity believes in the miracle of Christ’s birth (Mt 1:18). Mormonism relegates the conception of Jesus to “same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”
Believing that the Mormon Heavenly Father has a body of flesh and bones, it is easy to see how Mormon leaders teach that God had a physical relationship with Mary to produce Jesus.]

So, are we being mean by saying that Mormonism isn’t Christian. No, we are not. Our claim is based on a factual comparison of Mormon doctrines compared to Christian doctrines. We didn’t make this evidence up. This evidence plus volumes of additional evidence to support these Mormon doctrinal positions are available if one simply wants to do the research to find them. Christianity and Mormonism are not the same. Mormonism fails all “8 Essential Fundamentals of Christianity,” yet insists that it really is Christian.

“The proof really is in the pudding!”



    Mormons believe that Jesus is a God by birthright, the only begotten of the Father in the spirit and the flesh. Hebrews 1:6 "And again, when he bringeth the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him." Though perfect from the beginning, he "increased in wisdom and stature"(Luke 2:52) -this does not take away from his divine right or nature.


    Mormons believe in the Bible, not a creedal document from the 4th century. Matthew 26:39 - "not as I will, but as thou wilt." Mormons do not believe that Jesus was praying to himself in the garden of Gethsemane.


    The Hulses don't actually debate the idea that Mormons believe in a bodily resurrection, because they do. Instead they debate the concept of heaven and hell by Mormon definition. Mormons believe in "hell" as a place of torment where the unrighteous await the day of judgment. In the end, the powerful atonement of Christ will not leave all sinners in a state of endless torment, except for the "sons of perdition" - the worst of the worst (often described as the "Hitlers" of the world) a place reserved for the devil and his angels who go to a place of "outer darkness".


    The Hulses actually believe that repentance is required, as stated on their website: "salvation and forgiveness of sin is attained only through repentance, and faith in Jesus' death on the cross..." I would argue that Mormon's believe this as well, but we believe that keeping the commandments is a fruit of repentance. Hebrews 5:9 -"And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." We all try to obey him, we all fall short, and the repentance process begins again.


    The Introduction to the Book of Mormon makes the statement that the Bible contains "the fulness of the everlasting gospel." It makes the same claim for the Book of Mormon. Enough said.


    Mormons believe what is stated by the apostle Paul - "for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). The real issue here is Original Sin. Mormons believe that little children along with those who know nothing about the gospel are saved from sin through the atonement of Christ, that in order to "sin" one must properly understand that one is breaking a law. "For where no law is, there is no transgression" (Romans 4:15). The Book of Mormon teaches that "all little children are alive in Christ, and also all they that are without the law. For the power of redemption cometh on all them that have no law" (Moroni 8:22). Seems pretty fair of God to me.


    The Hulses claim that Mormons do not believe that Jesus will forgive all sins. They go on to quote 1 John 1:7, but conveniently forget to quote Matthew 12:32 - "And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come." This scripture also confounds the Trinity doctrine - how is speaking a word against Jesus different from speaking against the Holy Ghost if they are one and the same?


    Mormon leaders certainly DO NOT claim that "God had a physical relationship with Mary to produce Jesus" as the Hulses state, nor does Elder McConkie's quote support this. We do assert, however, that Jesus is literally the Son of the Father, genetically the offspring of God. We do not know any more than what the scriptures tell us, that Mary was "overshadowed" by the power of the Holy Ghost. Quoting Jeff Linsday, "With our pathetic mortal technology, we already know that it is possible for someone to be a literal father of someone without having sex,thanks to processes such as in-vitro fertilization and artificial insemination. If mortals can do such things, surely it's possible for God to be the literal Father of Christ and for a virgin to be the literal mother. Nothing in official LDS doctrine says that God had sex with Mary."

    I do not question the Hulses' sincerity or motivation. But many of the items here lack scholarship and fairness.

  2. Ryan is totally right. This blog post is absolutely miserable. It is a perfect example of the typically poor arguments made by anti-Mormon Evangelicals, which have embarrassed the more astute and well-read Evangelicals. For example, two noteworthy Evangelical scholars admitted that Evangelicals have not been keeping up with LDS scholarship.


Rocky and Helen Hulse

Rocky and Helen Hulse
Defending Christianity From Mormon Doctrine