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Evidence that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church or LDS) has a Christian Foundation

How can the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of Salt Lake City, Utah, live up to its claim to be a Christian organization when they teach so many eccentric and extra-biblical doctrines?

It is because the LDS does adhere to the essential message of the New Testament -- not only the teachings that we all must adhere to for salvation in Christ (for example, “God exists”), but more significantly, teachings that effectuate, or bring about, salvation.

It is also because all their false teachings concern nonessential issues. Nonessentials are principles that may be important for spiritual growth but on which someone may be in error without losing their status as a forgiven, born-again, blood-bought, heaven-bound child of God.

The vital question is, “Does the Mormon Church encourage people to make Jesus Christ their personal Lord and Savior?” The answer is unequivocally yes.

Please take the crash course of fast facts below that show the Bible’s essential doctrines in juxtaposition to corresponding LDS doctrines. Key words are in dark red.



Bible
“‘Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved’” (Acts 16:31).
  Mormon Church
Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is the first principle of the gospel. It is necessary to our salvation” (Gospel Principles [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1997], 117).

“Salvation cometh to none . . . except it be through repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ” (Mosiah 3:12, Book of Mormon, quoted in Gospel Principles, 117).


Bible
“Unless you repent, you too will all perish” (Luke 13:5).
  Mormon Church
“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: . . . second, Repentance (Joseph Smith, The Articles of Faith of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1:4).


Bible
“‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness’” (2 Timothy 2:19).
  Mormon Church
“We must forsake our sins.” (Gospel Principles, 124).


Bible
“And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ” (Romans 8:9).
  Mormon Church
“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: . . . fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith, 1:4).


Bible
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Romans 8:14 KJV).
  Mormon Church
“It is the Spirit that is the most effective teacher in any given situation. . . . We should . . . carefully listen for and record the unspoken impressions given by the Holy Ghost” (Daniel K. Judd, “Nourished by the Good Word of God,” Ensign, Nov. 2007, 94-95). “The adversary labors to dull our sensitivity to the promptings of the Spirit. . . . When we invite the Holy Ghost to fill our minds. . . . we feel strengthened, filled with peace and joy. We possess spiritual energy and enthusiasm.” (Elder Keith K. Hilbig, “Quench Not the Spirit Which Quickens the Inner Man,” Ensign, Nov. 2007, 37- 38).


Bible
“If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God.” (1 John 4:15).
  Mormon Church
“We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ” (Articles of Faith, 1:1).


Bible
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God” (1 John 5:1).
  Mormon Church
Jesus is the Messiah (the Christ)” (Elder David B. Haight, “The Sacrament--and the Sacrifice,” Ensign, Apr. 2007, 16).


Bible
“This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God” (1 John 4:2).
  Mormon Church
“‘The Word was made flesh’. . . . the Word is Jesus Christ” (James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981], 10). “‘[Jesus] shall come down from heaven among the children of men, and shall dwell in a tabernacle of clay’” (Mosiah 3:5, Book of Mormon, quoted in Gospel Principles, 63).


Bible
“This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 1:18).
  Mormon Church
“And behold, he shall be born of Mary . . . she being a virgin . . . who shall be overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God” (Alma 7:10, Book of Mormon). “Jesus was born of a virgin named Mary” (Gospel Principles, 63).


Bible
“If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).
  Mormon Church
“I know that he lives. . . . He is our Lord and our God” (President Joseph Fielding Smith, quoted in “He Lives! The Witness of Latter-day Prophets,” Ensign, Mar. 2008, 10).


Bible
“God presented him [Jesus] as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood” (Romans 3:25).
  Mormon Church
“The Savior atoned for our sins by suffering in Gethsemane and by giving his life on the cross. . . . We accept Christ’s atonement by placing our faith in him” (Gospel Principles, 73, 75). “He [Jesus] took our sins upon himself” (Gospel Principles, 19).



Many of the Bible verses above tell us that you will be saved if you believe or do what the verses say. Therefore, the corresponding and agreeing LDS quotations give us evidence that the LDS is Christian.

If certain other Mormon teachings seem to contradict what has been spelled out here, our next move should be to interview LDS representatives--such as missionaries--and ask them, “Which is it? You can’t believe both.”

I can tell you that their other teachings do not contradict what they say in the above quotations--but don’t trust me! The Bible says, “Don’t put your trust in mere humans” (Isaiah 2:22, NLT). I suggest you do your own investigation and trust the Lord Jesus to guide you with His Holy Spirit.



Insurance Round

The following comparisons of Mormon beliefs to Bible verses constitute an insurance round--confirmations of the evidence already presented. For years, I personally confirmed and reviewed the Christian core of the LDS over and over again. I had to do this because my well-meaning fellow evangelicals as well as the devil himself tried to cause me to doubt what God had revealed to me.


Bible
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8 KJV).
  Mormon Church
“The Apostle Paul taught that we can’t save ourselves; we need the Lord’s grace: [and then they go on to quote the very Bible verse I’ve quoted] ‘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’” (no author, “We Believe,” Ensign, Mar. 2008, 56).


Bible
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
  Mormon Church
“Except for Jesus Christ . . . everyone who has lived upon the earth has sinned” (Gospel Principles, 122).


Bible
“For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
  Mormon Church
“The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets [of the LDS], concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, quoted in Spencer J. Condie, “The Fall and Infinite Atonement,” Ensign, Jan. 1996, 22).



To fully understand LDS people, we should know that they often redefine common Bible terms. This is why even direct quotations from official LDS publications can be deceptive and often are deceptive when anti-Mormon non-Mormons generate the quotations. I’ve done my best to avoid any such deception in the comparisons above (my knowledge of “Mormonese” enables me to do this).




Sources
Joseph Smith, The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, translated by Joseph Smith (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981) is used alongside the Bible as scripture.

Ensign is an official magazine of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Gospel Principles (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1997) is used in Sunday school classes.

James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1981). James Talmage was one of the twelve apostles of the Church.