Ex-Mormons For Jesus


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1. I am investigating the Mormon church, and am confused.

Before going on, we believe it is of utmost importance to understand the following:

1) The Bible is the inspired word of God and all other books must be judged by it.
2) Mormonism and historic Christianity are in serious conflict with each other.
3) It is truth that will set us free (John 8:32).

Terminology Differences
(By Jenell McGregor)

Much of the confusion can be cleared up by realizing that there vast difference between LDS and Christian terminology. While the Mormon missionaries may use the same words as Christians, the following will bring to light the differences in theology.


Some of us who have been around Mormonism for a long time may be better able to recognize the current deceptive tactics of this cult. One of their most effective comes in the simple form of terminology differences. In other words, they use the same vocabulary as Christians when discussing subjects like salvation, grace, and atonement, but the meanings behind them are usually miles apart. Whether the individual Mormon does this out of ignorance or deception (i.e. trying to make themselves sound more like the average Christian) doesn’t really matter. The end result is one of confusion, mis-communication, and great frustration. The following should be helpful in getting to the truth of the matter.

All Bible verses are quoted from the King James Version of the Bible. Since the Book of Mormon has very little Mormon doctrine in it, the LDS definitions will come from Bruce R. McConkie’s book, “Mormon Doctrine”, Second Paperback Printing, 1981, unless otherwise specified. In some cases, additional documentation from Mormon sources will be sited.

ATONEMENT OF CHRIST (Reconciliation)

LDS - Christ’s death brought release from the grave and universal resurrection:
“And thus the Lord says that because of the atonement...man is raised in immortality unto eternal life, even as many as would believe;...If there had been no atonement, temporal death would have remained forever, and there never would have been a resurrection. The body would have remained forever in the grave, and the spirit would have stayed in a spirit prison to all eternity.” (Pg.63)

Since Christ purchased their resurrection from the grave, they can then be saved through works:
“We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.” (Third Article of Faith)

BIBLE - The atonement of Christ is not just resurrection:
“...but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” (Rom.5:11)
It is the means by which God reconciles repentant man to Himself in and through the Person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ:
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him...we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son...” (Rom.5:8-10; also see Rom.4:7-8; 2 Cor.5:19, 21, etc.)


LDS - Only valid when performed by one holding the LDS priesthood and serves four purposes:
“Baptism by immersion under the hands of a legal administrator, one empowered to bind on earth and seal in heaven, is the initiatory ordinance into the church...Baptism serves four purposes: (1) It is for the remission of sins... (2) It admits the repentant person to membership in the [LDS] Church and kingdom of God on earth... (3) It is the gate to the celestial kingdom of heaven... (4) It is the means whereby the door to personal sanctification [sic] is opened...” (Pgs.69-70)

Baptism precedes receiving the Holy Ghost: “Following baptism in water, the bestowal of the Holy Ghost takes place by the laying on of hands of the elders.” (Pg.438)

It is necessary for salvation: “As with other doctrines and ordinances, apostate substitutes of the real thing are found both among pagans and supposed Christians...Some of the churches of modern Christendom deny the necessity of baptism and talk in terms of salvation coming by the mere act of confessing Christ with one’s lips.” (Pg.72)

BIBLE - Baptism is identifying with Christ in His death and resurrection (Rom.6:3-4, Col.2:12). The emphasis is on the believer, not priesthood authority. The Apostle Paul said: “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel...” (1 Cor.1:17)

Two things are clear from this statement: One, Paul did not consider baptism necessary for salvation and secondly, it is not part of “the gospel”. Also see Acts 10:43-48 where the Holy Ghost fell upon Cornelius and his household before they were baptized.


LDS - A vicarious proxy-labor performed in LDS temples to enable salvation for the dead (Pg.72-73). Under this topic of baptism for the dead, Joseph Smith said the following: “And now, my dearly beloved brethren and sisters, let me assure you that these are principles in relation to the dead and the living that cannot be lightly passed over, as pertaining to our salvation. For their salvation is necessary and essential to our salvation...” (D.&C.128:15)

Makes Mormons, in a limited sphere, a savior: “Thus in the mercy of God, His erring, mortal children, who have taken upon themselves the name of Christ on earth, may become, in a limited sphere, each a savior in the house of his fathers, by vicarious labor and sacrifice rendered in humility, and, as represented in the baptismal ordinance...” (“The Articles of Faith”, James E. Talmage, Pg.152)

BIBLE - There are no instructions or teaching on this found in the Bible. It is mentioned once in 1 Cor. 15:29, and this taken out of context, is the scripture Mormons use to make their claim for it. Taking the entire chapter of 1 Cor.15 in context, we can see that the Apostle Paul is talking about resurrection, in which some whom he was addressing, did not believe (vs.12). Evidently there were some who were baptizing for the dead, but Paul asks why they are bothering to do this “if the dead rise not at all.” Notice that he does not include himself in the practice, but says what shall they do...why are they then baptized for the dead? The Bible is clear that there will be no second chance beyond the grave, nor can we in any way benefit our dead (Ps.49:7-8, Pr.11:7, Eccl.9:10, Isa.38:18, John 8:21 & 24, Heb.9:27).


LDS - Begins with baptism into the LDS church:
“The second birth begins when men are baptized in water by a legal administrator; it is completed when they actually receive the companionship of the Holy Ghost...” (Pg.101)

BIBLE - The new birth (or regeneration) is a necessity for entering the kingdom of God (John 3:3 & 7). It is a supernatural act of God (John 1:13, 1 Pet.1:23) which gives eternal life to the one who believes in Christ. It contains no human element nor does it lie within the range of human achievement; the result is literally becoming a new person: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2 Cor.5:17)


LDS - The cross is avoided; you will not see one on any Mormon edifice because it is a symbol of violence and murder. You might hear them say: “If your child was brutally killed with a knife, would you wear that knife around your neck? Besides, we believe the actual atonement took place in the Garden of Gethsemane”: “The sectarian world falsely suppose that the climax of his torture and suffering was on the cross...yet the great pains were endured in the Garden of Gethsemane...It was there he underwent His greatest suffering for men, taking upon himself, as he did, their sins on condition of repentance.” (Pg.555)

BIBLE - The cross is a symbol of salvation and the power of God: “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” (1 Cor.1:18)

It is a symbol of peace, rather than violence, between God and repentant man: “And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself...” (Col.1:20; also see Eph.2:13-16)

The Apostle Paul gloried in the cross: “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ...” (Gal.6:14, also see 1 Cor.2:2)


LDS - Exaltation to the “Celestial kingdom” where they become a god:
“Thus those who gain eternal life receive exaltation;...they overcome all things, have all power, and receive the fulness of the Father. They are gods.” (Pg.237)

“That exaltation which the saints of all ages have so devoutly sought is godhood itself. Godhood is to have the character, possess the attributes, and enjoy the perfections which the Father has.  It is to do what he does, have the powers resident in him, and live as he lives, having eternal increase.” (Pg.321) (Additional documentation: D.& C.132:19-21; “Articles of Faith, Pgs.430 and 530)

BIBLE - The word exaltation is not found in the Bible. Eternal life is knowing the only true God, not trying to become one: “As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.” (John 17:2-3)

It suggests a new quality of life (Rom.2:7; 1 John 2:25, etc.); it is a gift of God through Jesus (Rom.6:23), and is for all Christians (1 John 5:12-13).


LDS - Adam and Eve were given two conflicting commandments and were supposed to fall. The first commandment was “to multiply and fill the earth with posterity” and the second was “not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.” Without breaking the second commandment they could not fulfill the first for they would remain immortal and in this state could not have children. (Pgs.268-269); also - “And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the Garden of Eden...and they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin. But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things. Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.” (Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 2:22-25)

BIBLE - No where does it say that two immortal, innocent beings had to become mortal, sinful beings before they could have children. Further, if knowing sin was a prerequisite for doing good, then Jesus didn’t do any good for “He knew no sin” (2 Cor.5:21).


LDS - Father God (Elohim) is a resurrected man with a physical body. Christ (Jehovah) is a separate resurrected man with a physical body. The Holy Ghost is a separate man with a spiritual body. They are three totally separate and distinct gods: “Three glorified, exalted, and perfected personages comprise the Godhead or supreme presidency of the universe...Each occupies space and is and can be in but one place at one time, but each has power and influence that is everywhere present. The oneness of the Gods is the same unity that should exist among the saints...” (Pg.319) (Additional documentation: “Doctrines of Salvation”, Vol.1, Pg.1-2; D.& C. 130:22)

BIBLE - God is spirit and does not have a physical body (John 4:24 with Luke 24:39). He is omnipresent, not merely His “power and influence” (Joshua 1:9; Ps.139:7-8; Pr.15:3; Jer.23:23-24).


LDS - Mormon Church systems and doctrines: “The gospel of Jesus Christ is the plan of salvation. It embraces all the laws, principles, doctrines, rites, ordinances, acts, powers, authorities, and keys necessary to save and exalt men in the highest heaven hereafter...the gospel is concerned with those particular religious truths by conformity to which men can sanctify and cleanse their own souls...The true gospel of Jesus Christ was restored to earth in the last days through the instrumentality of Joseph Smith. It is found only in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” (Pg.331-334 my emp.)

BIBLE - The Greek word for gospel is “eauggelizo” which simply means “good news” or “glad tidings”. The gospel is the good news of Christ’s death and resurrection as atonement for our sins. The gospel the Apostle Paul preached is found in 1 Cor.15:1-4, and he gave a severe warning against those that preach “any other gospel”: “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” (Gal.1:6-8)


LDS - Three heavens (kingdoms or degrees of glory); (Note: a misuse of 1 Cor.15:40-41). “All the kingdoms of glory-whether celestial, terrestrial, or telestial-are sometimes called heaven.” (Pg.348) The celestial kingdom is highest of the three and is gained by complete obedience to the Mormon gospel. There are also three degrees within the Celestial kingdom and marriage in a LDS temple is necessary to obtain the highest of that world (Pgs.116-117; also see D. & C. 132:20). The terrestrial kingdom is basically for: (A) those who accept the Mormon gospel in the spirit world through “temple ordinances” for the dead, yet a lack or some particular circumstance kept them from being heirs of the celestial kingdom; (B) honorable men of the earth who do not accept and live the Mormon gospel law; and (C) “lukewarm” Mormons (Pg.784). The telestial kingdom is the lowest glory; the majority of all adults from the time of of Adam will go here. They are people who “ have lived after the manner of the world; who have been carnal, sensual, and devilish...liars and thieves, sorcerers and adulterers, blasphemers and murderers...” (Pg.778).

BIBLE - There are only two abodes: everlasting punishment or life eternal (Matt.25:31-46). The Bible speaks of heavens (plural - i.e. Paul was caught up to the “third heaven” - 2 Cor.12:2), however, this is not as the Mormon sees it. The first heaven is where the clouds and atmosphere (aerial heavens) are located (Deut.28:12, Ps.147:8, Acts 14:17, James 5:18). The second is where the sun, moon and stars rotate (Gen.15:5, Deut.1:10, Isa.13:10). The third heaven is the habitation (or throne) of God (Isa.66:1), the N abode of angels (Matt.18:10, 22:30), and where all those who have received Christ will go (Heb.9:15, 24, 12:22-23; Rev.21:1-4, 10-27). In regards to the three heavens it has been said, “The first we see by sight, the second we see by night, and the third we see by faith”.


LDS - An insufficient Savior: “Man may commit certain grievous sins-according to his light and knowledge-that will place him beyond the reach of the atoning blood of Christ. If then he would be saved, he must make sacrifice of his own life to atone-so far as in his power lies-for that sin, for the blood of Christ alone under certain circumstances will not avail.” (Pg.93) (Additional documentation: “Doctrines of Salvation”, Vol.1, Pgs.133-134; “What the Mormons Think of Christ”, Pg.19-20)

The spirit-brother of Lucifer (Pgs.164, 192-193). Also - “The appointment of Jesus to be the Savior of the world was contested by one of the other sons of God. He was called Lucifer...this spirit-brother of Jesus desperately tried to become the Savior of mankind.” (“The Gospel Through the Ages” by Milton R. Hunter, Pg.15)

Became “a God” by obedience: “By obedience and devotion to the truth he attained that pinnacle of intelligence which ranked him as a God, as the Lord Omnipotent, while yet in his pre-existent state.” (Pg.129) (Additional documentation: “The Gospel Through the Ages”, Milton R. Hunter, Pg.51)

BIBLE - The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin: “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7; also see Rom.5:8-9, Titus 2:14, Heb.9:14, etc.)

Jesus created Lucifer so he could not have been his brother: “For by him [Jesus] were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.” (Col.1:16; also see John 1:3)

He has always been God (Ps.90:1-2; John 1:1; Phil.2:5-7; Col.2:9; Heb.13:8, etc.). Obviously, the Jesus of Mormonism is not the Jesus of Christianity. The Apostle Paul feared that some would be taken in those who preached “another Jesus”: “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.” (2 Cor.11:3-4)


LDS - Justification is obtained by obedience to the law and personal works: “As with all other doctrines of salvation, justification is available because of the atoning sacrifice of Christ, but it becomes operative in the life of an individual only on conditions of personal righteousness.” (Pg.408)

BIBLE - God’s free gift of justifying the believing sinner on the grounds of Christ’s death; denotes the act of pronouncing righteousness, “acquittal”: “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” (Rom.3:24; also see Rom.5:1, 9 & 18)


LDS - Erroneously believe that they are not polytheists because that term only relates to the worship of pagan deities: “It should be remembered that polytheism has reference to pagan deities to whom reverence, devotion, and worship are given. It is not to be confused with the gospel truth that there are ‘gods many, and lords many, But to us there is but one God, the Father,...and one Lord Jesus Christ.’ (1 Cor.8:4-7.) The Saints are not polytheists.” (Pg.579)

Dictionaries, as well as Bible commentaries, defines polytheism as the belief in the existence (not just the worship of) more than one god. The following clearly shows that Mormonism is indeed polytheistic: “Three separate personages-Father, Son, and Holy Ghost-comprise the godhead...To us, speaking in the proper finite sense, these three are the only Gods we worship. But in addition there is an infinite number of holy personages, drawn from worlds without number, who have passed on to exaltation and are thus gods.” (Pgs.576-577) (Additional documentation: “Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith” by Joseph Fielding Smith, Pg.346; “Pearl Of Great Price”:Abraham, Chapters 4 & 5; “Journal of Discourses”, Vol.2, Pg.345 & Vol.7, Pg.333)

BIBLE - There is, always has been and always will be, only one God: “Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.” (Isa.43:10)
“Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the Lord he is God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: there is none else.” (Deut.4:39; also see Deut.6:4; 1 Sam.2:2; 1 Kings 8:60; Isa.44:6, 8; 45:5, 6; Mark 12:32; James 2:19, etc.)


LDS - Everyone pre-existed via God and His wives procreating spirit babies: “Pre-existence is the term commonly used to describe the pre-mortal existence of the spirit children of God the Father...All men and women are in the similitude of the universal Father and Mother, and are literally the sons and daughters of Deity; as spirits they were the offspring of celestial parentage.” (Pg.589) (Additional documentation: “The Seer”, Pg.158 & 172; “Achieving A Celestial Marriage, Student Manual” 1976, 1992, Pg.132)

BIBLE - Only Christ pre-existed; man is of this earth: “And he said unto them, ‘Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.” (John 8:23; also see John 3:31)

Our spirits do not come from the womb of a heavenly mother (Zech.12:1). We are first natural and then spiritual (1 Cor.15:45-47). We become children of God at conversion (John 1:12) by adoption (Eph.1:5; Gal.4:5).

PREISTHOOD (Aaronic & Melchizedek) / AUTHORITY

LDS - Believe they alone have the authority to baptize, preach the gospel, and perform ordinances through their priesthood (which is not offered to women & prior to 1978 the Negro race was also excluded): “What is a key?...It is the right to enjoy the blessing of communication with the heavens, and the privilege and authority to administer in the ordinances of the gospel of Jesus Christ, to preach the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins...The keys of the kingdom are the power, right, and authority to preside over the kingdom of God on earth (which is the Church) and to direct all of its affairs...Every man ordained to any degree of the priesthood has this authority delegated to him...” (Pgs.410-411; also see Pg.594)

BIBLE - The Aaronic (Levitical) priesthood was ended by the death of Christ when he became our High Priest (Heb.10:19-21). The book of Hebrews speaks of the priests (plural) that were (past tense), in contrast to the priest (singular) who is now a surety of a better covenant because He lives forever (see Heb.7:11-28). Further, no prophet, apostle or priest in the Bible was ever a priest after the order of Melchizedek. Melchizedeck was a “type” of Christ (i.e. he was a king-priest) and this order belongs to Christ alone. Believers now have but one priest representing them and need no other: “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim.2:5)
All believers (no discrimination as to race or gender) are (not have) a “holy priesthood” (1 Peter 2:5), a “royal priesthood” (1 Peter 2:9), because they belong to King Jesus; the purpose of this priesthood is to offer up “spiritual sacrifices” and proclaim His praises. The authority for believers comes directly from Jesus (Matt.28:18-19, John 17:18-20).


LDS - There are three kinds of salvation - general, individual and exaltation (becoming a god). (1) Unconditional or general salvation, that which comes by grace alone without obedience to gospel law, consists in the mere fact of being resurrected...(2) Conditional or individual salvation, that which comes by grace coupled with gospel obedience...(3) Salvation in its true and full meaning is synonymous with exaltation...This full salvation is obtained in and through the continuation of the family unit in eternity, and those who obtain it are gods.” (Pgs.669-670)

BIBLE - There is only one kind of salvation and it is conditioned solely on faith in Jesus Christ as one’s substitute for and savior from sin: “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us...” (1 Thess.5:9-10) “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)


LDS - Here again, this is thought to be mere resurrection from the grave: “...all men will come forth in the resurrection because of the atoning sacrifice of Christ...In this sense, the mere fact of resurrection is called salvation by grace alone.” (Pg.671)

Further, the late Mormon Apostle Bruce McConkie labeled salvation by “grace alone without works” as the “second greatest heresy” of Christendom. (“What Think Ye of Salvation by Grace?” BYU Devotional Address, 1/10/84).

BIBLE - It is God’s redemptive mercy through Christ Jesus and is not conditioned upon man’s “works”: “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.” (Eph.2:8-9; also see John 6:28-29; Rom.3:24-28,11:6; Gal.2:16, 21; Gal.5:4; Titus 3:5-7, etc.)


LDS - Specific acts, but not man’s basic nature: “A man sins when he violates his conscience, going contrary to light and knowledge-not the light and knowledge that has come to his neighbor, but that which has come to himself.” (Pg.735) “...modern Christendom has the false doctrine of original sin...the common view is that all men are tainted with sin and denied blessings because of Adam’s fall...Protestant views about so-called original sin are similar. The church of England, for instance, teaches that original sin is the fault and corruption of the Nature of every man, that naturally is ingendered (sic) of the offspring of Adam...” (Pg.550)

BIBLE - We are in spiritual rebellion until conversion (Col.1:21-22). It is not just that we commit sins but that we are born with a sin nature:
“Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.” (Eph.2:2-3; also see Rom.5:12; Ps.51:5)


LDS - Believe that God (as a resurrected, physical man) came to Mary as such and begat Jesus in the same manner as any other man on earth would: “God the Father is a perfected, glorified, holy Man, an immortal Personage. And Christ was born into the world as the literal Son of this Holy Being; he was born in the same personal, real, and literal sense that any mortal son is born to a mortal father. There is nothing figurative about his paternity; he was begotten, conceived and born in the normal and natural course of events, for he is the Son of God, and that designation means what it says.” (Pg.742) (Additional documentation: “Family Home Evening Manual, 1972, Pgs.125-126; Journal of Discourses, Vol.8, Pg.115)

BIBLE - Mary “was found with child of the Holy Ghost” (Matt.1:18); and it is clear that she is still a virgin after she is “with child”:
“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” (Matt.1:23)

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2. I am a Mormon and I'm questioning my faith.

3. I want to know if Mormons are Christians

4. What is a Christian and how do I become one?

5. I am a Mormon and I stand by my faith!


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