What does Mormonism teach?

The following article is used by permission from the Christian Apologetics & Research Ministry
The doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) are very interesting. Most of the 'odd' ones are not initially taught to potential converts. But they should be. Instead, "they are revealed later as one matures and gains the ability to accept them." The LDS Church tries to make its official doctrines appear Christian but what underlies those Christian sounding terms is far from Christian in meaning.

The following are the teachings of its officials throughout the years. Please note that these teachings are documented from Mormon writers, not anti-Mormon writers. Finally, many Mormons respond that most of the citations below are not from official Mormon writings, as if that disproves the doctrines they teach. If they are not official, why have the Mormon apostles and high officials taught them, written them, and why are their books sold in Mormon bookstores? The truth is, the following is what Mormons are taught.

1. The true gospel was lost from the earth. Mormonism is its restoration, Mormon Doctrine, by Bruce R. McConkie, p. 635.

2. We need prophets today, the same as in the Old Testament, Mormon Doctrine, p. 606.

3. The book of Mormon is more correct than the Bible, History of the Church, 4:461.

4. If it had not been for Joseph Smith and the restoration, there would be no salvation. There is no salvation [the context is the full gospel including exaltation to Godhood] outside the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mormon Doctrine, p. 670.

5. There are many gods, Mormon Doctrine, p. 163.

6. There is a mother god, Articles of Faith, by James Talmage, p. 443.

7. God used to be a man on another planet, Mormon Doctrine, p. 321. Joseph Smith, Times and Seasons, vol 5, pp. 613-614; Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, vol 2, p. 345, Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, vol. 7, p. 333.

8. After you become a good Mormon, you have the potential of becoming a god, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pages 345-347, 354.

9. God the Father had a Father, Joseph Smith, History of the Church, vol. 6, p. 476; Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses, vol. 5, p. 19; Milton Hunter, First Council of the Seventy, Gospel through the Ages, p. 104-105.

10. God resides near a star called Kolob, Pearl of Great Price, pages 34-35; Mormon Doctrine, p. 428.

11. God the Father has a body of flesh and bones, Doctrine and Covenants, 130:22.

12. God is in the form of a man, Joseph Smith, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 6, p. 3.

13. God is married to his goddess wife and has spirit children, Mormon Doctrine p. 516.

14. We were first begotten as spirit children in heaven and then born naturally on earth, Journal of Discourse, Vol. 4, p. 218.

15. The first spirit to be born in heaven was Jesus, Mormon Doctrine, page 129.

16. The Devil was born as a spirit after Jesus "in the morning of pre-existence," Mormon Doctrine, page 192.

17. Jesus and Satan are spirit brothers and we were all born as siblings in heaven to them both. Mormon Doctrine, p. 163.

18. A plan of salvation was needed for the people of earth so Jesus offered a plan to the father and Satan offered a plan to the father but Jesus' plan was accepted. In effect the Devil wanted to be the Savior of all Mankind and to "deny men their agency and to dethrone god." Mormon Doctrine, page 193; Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, page 8.

19. God had sexual relations with Mary to make the body of Jesus, Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 4, p. 218, 1857; vol. 8, p. 115. This one is disputed among many Mormons and not always 'officially' taught and believed. Nevertheless, Young, the 2nd prophet of the Mormon church taught it.

20. Jesus' sacrifice was not able to cleanse us from all our sins (murder and repeated adultery are exceptions). Journal of Discourses, Vol. 3, p. 247, 1856.

21. Good works are necessary for salvation, Articles of Faith, p. 92.

22. There is no salvation without accepting Joseph Smith as a prophet of God, Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. 1, p. 188.

23. Baptism for the dead, Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. II, p. 141. This is a practice of baptizing each other in place of non-Mormons who are now dead. Their belief is that in the afterlife, the "newly baptized" person will be able to enter into a higher level of Mormon heaven.

24. There are three levels of heaven: telestial, terrestrial, and celestial, Mormon Doctrine, p. 348.

25. The Holy Ghost is a male personage, A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, by Le Grand Richards, Salt Lake City, 1956, page 118; Journal of Discources, Vol. 5, page 179
Some Mormons may disagree with a few of the points listed on this page, but all of what is stated here is from Mormon authors in good standing of the Mormon church.

Bible Study