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Mormonism is not a Christian religion

Mormons live exemplary lives but their religion has nothing to do with Christianity

By on Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Mormon Mitt Romney, almost certain to be the GOP candidate in November Photo: Alex Brandon/AP/Press Association Images

Mormon Mitt Romney, almost certain to be the GOP candidate in November Photo: Alex Brandon/AP/Press Association Images

Now that his main rival Rick Santorum has pulled out, it now seems safe to say that Mitt Romney has the Republican nomination in the bag. This means that come November we shall have an election where a Mormon is pitched against an incumbent President, who many Americans believe to be, contrary to all evidence, a Muslim. Great choice, eh?

Barak Obama is not and has never been a Muslim, yet this crazy belief persists; however, the American public seems able to let Mitt’s Mormonism pass. There is a reason for this. While Islam is seen as the religion of the other, Mormonism is in fact a home-grown religion, rooted in the American continent, and rooted in American experience. Say what you like about Joseph Smith Junior, the prophet of Mormonism, but his was a typical American story.

But what this obscures is the fact that, despite their protestations to the contrary, Mormonism is not a Christian religion. It is not even a Christian heresy. It is a religion that has no real connection with Jesus Christ, except at a semantic level. It has been allowed to pass itself off as another manifestation of American Protestantism – some Catholics have been remarkably lax on this front – but it is nothing of the sort, denying as it does the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith – the Trinity, the divinity of Christ, and the exclusivity of revelation in Christ. Oddly enough, Mormonism is further from Christianity than Islam itself. There are indeed interesting parallels between the two. 

Mormonism is based on an audacious forgery, the Book of Mormon. Quite a few American Baptists have undertaken missions to the Mormons to convert them to Christianity and to bring them to see that the Bible itself needs no further books added to it.  I myself have read the Book of Mormon and found it tedious in the extreme. However, I fully recognise that Mormons themselves live exemplary lives. I have no quarrel with the practice of the Mormonism; I have a huge problem with its underlying claims, which are demonstrably false.

There is no room to demonstrate their falsity here; suffice it to say that the claim that Jesus came to America after his resurrection has no historical or archaeological basis; neither does any of the pseudo-history of the Book of Mormon; and no archaeological evidence for it has been found, despite decades of looking for it. 

So we are faced with the prospect of an American president who believes in things that no rational person should possibly believe in: a faith that denies reason. Odd how Rick Santorum, the neoAristotelian, was never treated with the same deference.

  • http://www.mormon.me.uk/ Dave Sadler

     I bet you wrote that entire diatribe with a straight face?
    Made me laugh, but the really sad thing is with brainwashed people, they have absolutely no idea they’re brainwashed.
    2 Hands or 10, it’s pretty obvious to the UN-brainwashed exactly what the image is. 
    In 1835, Kirtland Ohio, Joseph Smith bought a set of ancient papyrus off a travelling salesman, upon first inspection he claimed one of them was written by Abraham himself “A
    Translation of some ancient Records, that have fallen into our hands
    from the catacombs of Egypt. – The writings of Abraham while he was in
    Egypt, called the Book of Abraham, written by his own hand, upon
    papyrus.” LOL

  • http://www.mormon.me.uk/ Dave Sadler

     You really are funny.  Do you work for FAIR or FARMS or directly for Mormon PR Inc?
    Does your mathematical examination of the Kinderhook plates give you a similar result?

  • DCP the Lesser

    I have never said that Clement of Alexandria was anything other than Catholic.

    I also never said that Clement of Alexandria was a “Mormon” or that he believed everything that Mormons do. No, by his own time the apostasy was long underway and the substitution of interpretation based upon the philosophers for the plain reading of the Bible and early tradition was already by his time in place.

    Trouble is, it is in the teachings of “creation from nothing”, “incorporeal Father”, and man not being offspring of God” that he departs from the Bible. The Bible nowhere claims that God is incorporeal. In fact, it is the opposite, for the Bible has Jesus intimate that the Father has shape, that God has a form that can be seen, and that he has parts. Shape is an attribute of corporeality.

    Creation out of nothing is unbiblical as well. In fact, it did not become popular until after the mid-second century. Even Justin the Martyr subscribed to the view that creation was effected out of chaotic matter. Even Judaism did not subscribe to the idea of creation out of nothing until much later,

    And, the Bible has Paul approvingly quote Aratus and his mention of man being the offspring of God. Admittedly that idea had to go if the other ideas of the philosophers were going to infiltrate the Church effectively.

    But, the idea that men would become gods enthroned was very early taught in the early Christian church and is one of the only ideas believed by both orthodox and heterodox alike. Recall that Gnosticism emanated from Christianity very early in time.

  • DCP the Lesser

    I have never claimed that the early fathers were anything other than catholic.

    That said, the doctrines which you mention above are directly conflicted by the Bible, which teaches that God is corporeal (the Bible definitely states that God has shape, form, and parts, which most definitely are attributes of corporeality) and that the creation was of pre-existing materials.

    Unfortunately, the translations mask the teachings regarding the creation. The Greek is much clearer, and that goes for the Deuterocanon as well.

    Interestingly enough, there is not one passage in the Greek New Testament that states that God is incorporeal. Passages must be wrested to make them say anything even remotely close.

  • DCP the Lesser

    I do not work for FARMS (now the Maxwell Institute) and I do not work for FAIR. I am affiliated with none of these entities. I also do not work for any so-called “Mormon PR” firm or anything the like. I stand alone.

    As to the Kinderhook plates, the answer is a ‘no’ answer. The math I mention only applies to measurement of papyri and missing sections, not to bogus plates that did not in reality fool Joseph Smith, contra misinserted portions of rumor accounts into the old history of the Church.

    Even the forgers of those plates admitted that Joseph Smith asked them to take them to scholars to confirm their authenticity before he would attempt to translate them. Even John Taylor, one of Joseph Smith’s best friends and assistant with him with the duties of publication of the Times and Seasons, had no idea what Smith’s opinion of the plates were at the time of the publication of an article mentioning them in detail, contra the several differing rumor accounts circulating around Nauvoo, IL at the time.

  • DCP the Lesser

    Yes, I did write it with a straight face because I have done the math and because I know a thing or two about copies of the Book of Breathing. The math give evidence that the Joseph Smith papyrus containing the Book of Breathing was between 21 and 46 feet in length. the Book of Breathing (depending upon recension) is between 3 and 7 feet and some inches long–maximum. What else might have been on that papyrus?

    I also have several copies in my possession and have seen several examples to know that not all of them had only the Book of Breathing written on them.

    As to hands, two hands raised pushes your regurgitated reconstruction into the dustbin and admits Joseph Smith’s reconstruction of two hands raised before the face closer to reality.

    What have you got? Regurgitated and outdated claims of critics. Believe me when I say that I am laughing harder than you are. If I laugh any harder I will have to repent for violating one of my temple covenants. :-)

  • DCP the Lesser

    Actually, Obama also does not seem to understand the Constitutional doctrine of ‘checks and balances.’ For proof, see his comments regarding the Supreme Court and their authority to overturn Acts of Congress.

  • DCP the Lesser

    I’ve got news for you. There really are and were people with the names of Jesus Christian and Maria Magdalena in several countries of the world. Go to Mexico and you more likely than not will meet someone named Jesus. Death indexes not connected with the Church also have such names as the above, so claiming that these refer to Mary Magdelene and Jesus Christ are nothing more than stretching on the part of critics of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

  • DCP the Lesser

    “‘For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God.’

    That is a quote from St. Irenaeus. You really think the Catholic Church is afraid of using the early Church Fathers? People convert to Catholicism (or Orthodoxy) after reading the early Fathers, not Mormonism.They were all catholic Christians.”

    Irenaeus had much stronger statements and rhetorical questions than the above quote chosen for the catechism.

    My question stands.

  • DCP the Lesser

    “The fullness of Christianity does indeed include priesthood…But it is not Mormonism.”

    The Catholic Church does not even include the fullness of Christian priesthood. All you have is claimed descent from local leaders with local responsibilities that filled in the vacuum created by the extinguishment of the sacred choir of apostles, who had responsibility over the entire Church and over local leaders known as Bishops. This required the title of bishop to be assigned to Apostles in order to legitimize the claims of Bishops to be the rightful heir of apostolic priesthood.

    Ephesians 2:19-20 and 4:11-14 come to mind. Mormonism, on the other hand, claims to have a living quorum of twelve living apostles with authority traced by direct ordination of two witnesses by Peter, James and John, themselves heads of the apostolate and pillars in the Church.

    Where are the apostles and prophets of catholicism? They were gone by the second century and that is why Tertullian, putatively the Father of Latin Christianity, was taken in for a time by the Montanists, who claimed to have prophets after the New Testament Church lost theirs.

    I had more to write but something required my attention just now and I lost my train of thought.

  • DCP the Lesser

    P.S.: Your little collage of pictures is meaningless given the fact that the first scene in the Joseph Smith Papyrus is a portrayal of a living person who is a priest and who is wearing a kilt and anklets, and the ones in all the others are portrayals of a dead mummy at the end stage of embalming and wrapping.

    There is a major difference in what is portrayed. Part of the problem is that you do not understand the difference.

  • DCP the Lesser

    For a good analysis of the similarities and contrasts between the teachings of the early fathers and Mormonism, see the following from a Dominican Priest (who later converted to Mormonism sometime after the writing of the following).

    http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/papers/?paperID=7

    I merely offer this for the consideration of the similarities and differences and make no argument thereby.

  • DCP the Lesser

    “He taught that we were not literal spirit children of God…

    ‘But God has no natural relation to us, as the authors of the heresies will have it…’”

    so that people might seek God, even perhaps grope for him and find him, though indeed he is not far from any one of us. For ‘In him we live and move and have our being,’ as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we too are his offspring.’ Since therefore we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the divinity is like an image fashioned from gold, silver, or stone by human art and imagination.

    (Acts 17:27-29, NAB)

    Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live?

    (Hebrews 12:9, NIV)

    For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.

    (Ephesians 3:14-15, NIV)

    Now you might be wondering why I switched translations for the latter two quotations. It is because there is sometimes a tendency to ‘soften’ the translation at places in the NAB, as there is in other passages in the NIV, which I cited twice.

    But, notice that Paul cites Aratus approvingly and affirms that we are the offspring of God. ‘Offspring’ is in Greek genos, which carries as one of its definitions “descendents of a common ancestor”, the very definition which is assigned to the above Acts passage by Bauer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, the de facto standard among Greek Lexicons in the scholarly community.

    Notice also the NIV’s mention of “the Father of our spirits” in the Hebrews passages and the mention of the “whole family” in both heaven and earth.

    I also referenced the NIV rather than NAB for the last passage I cited because NAB translators decided not to view the word translated “family” as a collective, which it is. Even the Latin of the Vulgate has it as a collective.

    huius rei gratia flecto genua mea ad Patrem Domini nostri Iesu Christi ex quo omnis paternitas in caelis et in terra nominatur
    “Omnis paternitas” is a collective. The entire passage speaks of a whole family or paternity residing both in heaven and upon earth, a paternity which derives it name from the Father as the earthly descendents of a father in a home derive their name from their father. So we do the same from our Heavenly Father.

    But again, this is a teaching that was early discarded from the christian faith in efforts to push God further from ourselves in nature in an unnatural attempt to elevate him further than scripture had him to gain acceptance amongst the pagans who leaned more to philosophy than to the literal meaning of scripture.

    But even in that light I find Lactantius of interest. I do not have the source with me at the moment so will forbear quoting the passage to which I allude.

  • DCP the Lesser

    Barak Obama … has never been a Muslim…
     
    According to Obama’s school registration form for elementary school, obtained by the Associated Press, his religion is listed as “Islam.” See the image attached to this post and look carefully at the text in the area marked in red. the handwriting clearly reads “Islam” in that area. This photo has not been altered.

    Whether or not he is now is irrelevant since he has claimed to be Christian. But, he was listed in this school record as being Muslim when a child.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_WIJ53KCE4XJKZQOCJWAFS5QQQA irvingrlevine

    This a great piece of writing.   In the US, this would be squelched by bishops who in the tank for the Republicans.   

  • DCP the Lesser

    “God from God…”
     
    …Which just happens to be the part of the creed that is not beiieved by Christendom. “From” indicates derivation, meaning that there was some point in eternity whence the others were derived from the Father.
     
    I know you don’t believe that any of the persons are derived from anything but there it is.
     
    There is also another take on your opinion regarding Christ and the Church as it relates to the apostasy–which you deny happened. Here is the thing. John claimed that it was the last hour because many anti-Christs had come, as per prophecy.
     
    So, what happened? Was it really the last hour? Was John mistaken? What was it the last hour of? Did it refer to the end time or to the end of the organized Church on earth?
     
    The way I look at it is that not everyone who was of the Church died or remained dead. Rather, John remained as Jesus hinted and Peter and James were raised from the dead, with these three no longer present on earth as the Church crumbled as an organization. In time, these three appeared to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery and ordained them as new apostles to continue the original Church and renew it as an organization, or, in other worsds, was brought out of the wilderness as the woman of the Book of Revelation.
     
    In other words, notwithstanding the apostasy and breaking up of the visible organization on earth, the Church invisible continued in heaven until such time as it was feasible to revitalize the visible Church on earth once more.
     
    To clarify, even though the visible manifestation of the Church ended on earth, Christ still remained with the Church invisible and its existence in reality never ended at all. But, that Church was not the Catholic church that rose up in the aftermath of the last hour mentioned by John. The restoration at the hands of three of the original twelve apostles insured its survival.
     
    On the other hand, with the apostles gone from the scene until that time of restoration, the organization that required apostles and prophets was broken and morphed into something else entirely, with local Bishops then making claims and taking control of the fragmented Church of that day.
     
    And, if you understood LDS teachings like you seem to imply, no one was left as an orphan. Christ most certainly kept his promises but he did it through the restoration of the Gospel even though the visible organization did die. Remember, Jesus promised that the gates of Hades (which, as we know, is the realm of the dead) would not prevail against his Church. The only way that this promise would have any meaning at all would be for the Church visible to die and be faced by the gates of Hades that would attempt to keep the Church within Hades and prevail against her. The restoration ensured that the gates of Hades would never prevail against Jesus’ Church, just as he promised, for two apostles were raised from the dead, united with one who did not die, and together these ordained Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery as apostles to continue the Church visible for all time.