A-Z: Introduction to issues with Mormonism

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A

Aaronic priesthood
Mormons claim to have the Aaronic priesthood, yet ignore the Biblical restriction of it to the Levites, as well as its historic function. The book of Hebrews speaks of the obsoleteness of the priesthood.
Adam-God
Brigham Young taught that God the Father, the father of our spirits, was Adam, the first man. Mormon Mark Butler writes, "[T]he historical record does rather more than suggest Brigham Young taught Adam God. He gave a rather extensive discourse on the subject in General Conference on October 8, 1854. This caused a big controversy that kept it from becoming the doctrine of the Church and instead transformed it from official mystery to official denial to official heresy to official mystery again over the past one hundred and fifty years." Bruce McConkie admits: "Yes, President Young did teach that Adam was the father of our spirits, and all the related things that the cultists ascribe to him."

Anachronisms

Anti-Mormon
Mormon J. Nelson-Seawright writes that "the terminological sleight of hand involved in the label ‘anti-Mormon’ allows [Mormons] to ignore the differences between honest and honorable men and women who oppose us, on the one hand, and unprincipled villains, on the other." Mormons Joni Hilton advises fellow members: "First of all, anti-Mormon literature, Internet sites, conversations, ideas, etc. are like spiritual pornography. Once they are in the mind, they are very difficult to get rid of. As you try to reach out to your husband, I would advise you to avoid any material, even if you think it might help you understand him better. You don’t want those seeds of doubt planted in your own mind, because no one is immune to them."

Archaeology

Arrogance of Joseph Smith
"I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him; but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet." The Biblical doctrine of salvation allows for no such boasting..."For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." - Ephesians 2:8-10
Attempt to sell Book of Mormon copyright
Joseph Smith sent (?) and (?) to Canada in an attempt to sell the copyright for the Book of Mormon for a sum of money. Having failed, they returned to Smith in New York, complaining that Smith's prophecy failed. Smith replied, ""

B

Blood atonement
Brigham Young and Joseph Fielding Smith explicitly taught that the blood of Christ would not atone for... and that a person's own blood must be shed...
Book of Abraham
In (?) Smith claimed to have completed the translation of the "Book of Abraham" from Egyptian papyrus purchased from an antiquities dealer named Michael Chandler. At the time, no one in America could read Egyptian. Now, Egyptologists around the world can read the papyrus, and it is nothing more than a pagan funeral scroll.

Book of Mormon doctrine

Book of Mormon geography
To account for the unsurmountable evidence against the traditional, cont view of Book... nearly every Mormon apologist today has abandoned the traditional understanding of the bofm's geography. Not one city has been found.
Book of Mormon witnesses
"Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris and David Whitmer, all initially describe their experience with the angel and the plates as subjective and visionary rather than objective and concrete. Their elaborations on the encounter, their departure from the LDS Church, as well as other 7 events in their lives, raise questions about their level of discernment and their credibility as witnesses."[1] "The testimony of the Eight Witnesses is more objective but is plagued by its own set of problems. All eight had close personal ties to Joseph Smith's family — four were David Whitmer's brothers, a fifth was married to a Whitmer sister, and Joseph's father and two brothers made up the remaining three. These close ties to Joseph Smith, coupled with discrepancies between the witnesses' published Book of Mormon statement and later personal statements, as well as the question of coercion on the part of Joseph Smith, all raise questions of their credibility as well."[2]
Burning in the bosom
Mormons are encouraged to

C

Changes in the Book of Mormon
Significant doctrinal changes have been made to the Book of Mormon.
Church finances
The Mormon Church refuses to publicly disclose their finances, in contrast with nearly every reputable religious organization. It is estimated that the Church brings in over X billion dollars a year from tithing.
Conception of Jesus
Mormon leaders have consistently taught that Jesus Christ was physically begotten by God the Father, who they teach possesses a physical body.
Cult
While Mormonism does not have all the full-blown attributes of cults like the Jim Jones following, it possesses characteristics that lead many Christians to consider it a cult. Mormonism puts an excessive amount of focus around it's founding, charismatic human leader, Joseph Smith. It's missionary endeavors are almost completely parasitical on Catholic and Protestant missionary work. Mormonism thrives on drawing converts out of nominal Christianity. Mormonism teaches that their sect's leaders have a direct, exclusive line to God. The sect won't disclose major financial data that nearly every other religious organization will. There is no public financial accountability. It is often difficult for Mormons to leave even when they find out the organization is fraudulent. Mormonism fosters an inordinate social and psychological dependency. Mormons are inordinately paranoid about reading literature opposed to Mormon truth-claims (a form of isolation). Mormonism fosters a deceitful rhetoric which avoids clear disclosure of fundamental Mormon beliefs (such as the nature of God and the afterlife). Mormons ostracize, slander, and cruelly stereotype ex-members. Mormons repeat to each other over and over again in church life, almost word for word, "I know the Church is true. I know the Book of Mormon is true. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God."

D

Death of Joseph Smith
According to John Taylor, Smith shot three and killed two. Far from being a reverent call to God, Smith was giving the "masonic cry of distress". Found in Smith's pocket was a Jupiter Talisman.
DNA
DNA research has conclusively shown that Native Americans have their origin in those of East Asia (Siberia and Mongolia). This is consistent with ... research of linguistics.

E

Eternal life

Exaltation

F

The Fall

False prophecies of Joseph Smith

First Vision accounts

G

Gordon B. Hinckley
The current prophet/president of the Mormon religion.
Gordon B. Hinckley interviews
Hinckley, a public relations specialist from the beginning of his career within the Mormon Church, has given less-than-forthright answers to important questions asked of him in public interviews. When asked if "Mormons believe that God was once a man?", Hinckley responded, "I wouldn't say that. There was a couplet coined, 'As man is, God once was. As God is, man may become.' Now that's more of a couplet than anything else. That gets into some pretty deep theology that we don't know very much about."

H

Hill Cumorah

Holy Ghost

J

Jesus Christ

K

Kinderhook Plates
Joseph Smith "translated" a set of fraudulent plates known as the Kinderhook Plates. As the (?) Ensign details, the plates were forged out of fake (?). The plates were constructed as a joke by (?) to expose Smith.

L

Lorenzo Snow couplet theology
A famous and popular couplet in Mormonism is, "As man is, God once was. As God is, man may be." In Isaiah 43:10, God said, "Before me no god was formed, nor shall there be any after me."
Lying for the Lord
Mormonism fosters an attitude toward lying that sees it as justified when used to protect confidence in the Church and its image to outsiders. Young members and even missionaries are taught that "a testimony is found in the bearing of it", and are promised... A classic example of lying is Smith's denial of polygamy: "What a thing it is for a man to be accused of committing adultery, and having seven wives, when I can only find one. I am the same man, and as innocent as I was fourteen years ago; and I can prove them all perjurers." At the time of the quote Smith had over thirty wives.

M

Masonic influence
This was even more evident before the changes made to the endowment ceremony in 1990 (see below).
Money-digging
As Mormon apologists and historians will now admit, Joseph Smith was involved in the occult. This happens to be how he met Emma Smith, his first of 30+ wives. Emma's father wept...

N

Nauvoo Expositor
Joseph Smith, mayor of Nauvoo, ordered the destruction of the newspaper which publicized his polygamous relationships.
Neo-orthodoxy
Modern Mormons in large measure are receiving their doctrine from BYU professors like Stephen E. Robinson and Robert Millet, who are teaching things at odds with traditional Mormon doctrine. Not only that, but Mormon apologists are, unbeknownst to most laymen, radically altering traditional doctrines.

P

Polygamy
Members are generally kept uninformed of just how polygamous Joseph Smith and Brigham Young were. Smith had over 30 wives, a third of which were married to living husbands. Of the wives, he married 14-year-old and two 16-year-olds. Smith in large practied his polygamy in secret. When Emma discovered his affairs she was furious. Brigham Young had over (?) children from 60 wives, 9 (?) of which were married to other living husbands. Much of this information is available on FamilySearch.org, the Mormon Church's geneological web site.
Population and growth rate
Mormonism has one of the worst retention rates in any religion in the country. It is estimated that one-third of American Mormons are active. Among other things, the internet is having an enourmous impact on Mormonism, as embarrassing historical information and full disclosure of doctrinal teachings are now freely available at the click of a mouse.

R


Racism
Leaders taught and understood as doctrine the "curse of cain", and refused to let blacks join before 1978.
Relationship with Jesus
Mormons are forbidden from praying directly to Jesus, and from directly worshiping Christ as their God.
Repentance
When most stringent and specific, Mormon leaders have outlined repentance as a long, drawn-out, six step process that is incomplete until a sinful habit is successfully conquered in entirety and one is "keeping all the commandments". In essence, comprehensive perfection is required for comprehensive forgiveness. This is in constrast to the Bible, which views repentance simply as a sorrow over one's sin, a heartfelt, genuine resolve to be holy, and a trust in Christ for free forgiveness. While the Bible sees the fruits of obedience as necessarily following repentance, Mormonism teaches that obedience is part of repentance. While Biblical salvation offers full assurance of forgiveness in this life (Romans 4:4-8; 5:1), Mormonism delays such assurance into the next.

S

Joseph Smith, Jr.
The first prophet/president of the Mormon religion.

T

Temple ceremony changes
Significant changes were made to the endowment ceremony in 1990, and then again in 2005.

W

Worthiness
Romans 4:1-8

Z

Zelph the White Lamanite

[edit] Notes

  1. http://www.irr.org/mit/bomwit1.html
  2. http://www.irr.org/mit/bomwit1.html
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