For the origin of Mormonism, with its initial constituency taken from apostate Baptists and Methodists—for the origin of the Book of Mormon, literary product of a worn out Presbyterian minister turned would-be novelist—for the rise of the founder, a rag-tag-money-digger and undefeated champion liar—for a resume of the extra-biblical Mormon “scriptures,” written in a would-be imitation Bible style, pompous, verbose, nonsensical-for a history of the Mormons, full of violence, treason, treachery and expanding American Islamism—for the organization and methods of the Mormon church, with its worse than Romish hierarchy and its communistic paradise—for its polygamy and phallicism—for its conflict with archaeology and Egyptology—for more detail on these and other related facts in connection with Mormonism, read the excellent booklets on the subject published by Eerdmans, Baker, and Zondervan book houses. For in the study and pursuit of the labyrinthine elements of this eccentric cult there is more than entertainment of natural curiosity. Weapons and live ammunition are provided against a subtle enemy.
With this article we concern ourselves with what Mormons believe. Exactly what do they believe? Have you not read vague reports of their horrible doctrine? However, we are not interested in hearsay, but in the teaching of Mormonism as it really is. So let us examine the ‘Mormon Articles of Faith. Article 1 declares: “We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.” Nothing horrible about that, is there? We would, nonetheless, like to know what that means. Does it mean what it says? How do Mormons think of the terms “God,” “Christ” and the “Holy Spirit”? Thus: “Are there more Gods than one? Yes, many” (Cat., p. 13). “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man” (Journal of Discourses, VI, 4). “He (Adam) is our Father and our God and the only God with whom we have to do” (JD, I, 50). “There is no other God in heaven but that God who has flesh and bones” (Compend. of Theol., 287). “Each God through his wife or wives, raises up a numerous family of sons and daughters. . .” (The Seer, I, 37). God is a demi-god, a human-angelic being; he is anthropomorphous, mortal, polygamous and a hamartological, polytheistic being.
Of Christ it is said, “He was not begotten of the Holy Ghost” (JD, I, 50). “Lucifer, the son of the morning, is our elder brother and the brother of Jesus Christ, but he rebelled against God and was cast down from heaven . . .” (The Deseret News, Jan. 21, 1928). “We say it was Jesus Christ who was married to the Marys and Martha” (JD, II, 80). Christ was begotten by natural generation from his natural parents, the Virgin Mary and God the Father. “And who is the Father? He is the first of the human family (i.e., Adam). Jesus . . . was begotten . . . by the same character that was in the Garden of Eden, and who is our Father in heaven” (JD, I, 50, 51). This is a denial of the eternal generation of the Son, of the deity of Christ and of the virgin birth, “of the sinless humanity of Christ, of the doctrine of the trinity and of the peculiar properties of the Persons of the trinity.
The Holy Spirit is a substance, such as electricity or animal magnetism, “a divine substance or fluid” (Key to Theol., 10th ed., 46). Christian Science shudders at the idea of “substance” and of “animal magnetism.” The latter Mrs. Eddy feared, denounced, and laid all evil to it. But we object to attributing anything material or temporal to the Holy Spirit. As God, the Spirit is essentially Spirit and a divine personal being, not a juice. See John 16:13-15.
Article 2. “We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgressions.” Now although no one would dream of the first article as having the meaning the Mormons attach to it, nevertheless this second article is plainly erroneous. It claims, as the ancient lie of Pelagianism did, “that no one shall be condemned because of original sin, but that all are free from the guilt of” that sin. (Rejection of Errors, II, V). This is antipodal to Scripture that all men died in fallen Adam (Rom. 5:12, 16). The church has always from the beginning opposed the lie “that original sin cannot suffice to condemn the whole human race, or to deserve temporal and eternal punishment” (ibid., II, I). This is actually a denial of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. For if men are not punished for Adam’s imputed transgression (singular),Rom. 5:15, 17, 18, neither can they be saved by Christ’s imputed righteousness.
Article 3. “We believe that through the atonement of Christ all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.” Beside being a denial of the scriptural truth of particular atonement, this article is in keeping with the Mormon teaching of universal salvation. What this statement means is this: “The atonement of Christ wrought a universal redemption for all men from the mortal death incident to the transgression of Adam, and it provided a means of propitiation for individual sin whereby the sinner may attain salvation through obedience” (Talmage, The House of the Lord, 79, emph. added). “There is but one price set on forgiveness for individual transgressions (Christ’s atonement covered original sin only—RCH) . . . and that price . . . is obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel” (ibid., 65). The above article is also to be understood in harmony with this remark: “The sectarian dogma of justification by faith alone has exercised an influence for evil since the early days of Christianity” (Art. Faith, 25 ed., 479). Justification by faith is called “this pernicious doctrine” (ibid.). Further teaching on salvation is expressed thus: “Q. What will be the consequence if they (the United States) do not embrace the Book of Mormon as a divine revelation? A. They will be destroyed from the land and sent down to hell like all other generations who have rejected a divine message” (The Seer, 215).
Next, due to lack of space, we go to Article 8. “We believe the Bible to be the word of God, so far as it is translated correctly. We also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.” What is meant by the clause, “so far as it is translated correctly” is this: “Add all this imperfection to the uncertainty of the translation, and who, in his right mind could for one moment suppose the Bible in its present form to be a perfect guide? (Then “what light shall be their perfect guide?”—Psalter No. 323, RCH). Who knows that even one verse has escaped pollution, so as to convey the same sense now that it did in the original?” (Divine Authority of the Bk. of Mor., 218). Even one verse? There must be thousands of verses in the Mormon “scriptures” word for word identical with passages from Isaiah and from the New Testament, including the ministry of John the Baptist, and all in the very words of our 1611 King James Bible. Certainly then there must be thousands of verses in the Bible free of pollution and uncertain translation, otherwise the Mormon “scriptures” do not escape pollution and imperfection. But what else does Article 8 mean? This:—”The modern Christians with the Bible in their hands are in as gross darkness as the worshipers of Baal” (Spencer’s Letters, 119-20). And this: “. . . many of the Gentiles (any non-Mormon, including the Jews!—RCH) shall say: ‘A Bible! a Bible! We have got a Bible, and there can not be any more Bible!’ Thou fool, that shall say, ‘A Bible, we have got a Bible and we need no more Bible’ . . . because ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written” (BM, 2 Nephi 29:3, 6, 10). But see Rev. 22:18, 19;Deuteronomy 4:2; Prov. 30:6; Is. 8:20.
Article 11. “We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where or what they may.” If this is true, then why do they say the following of the evangelical, historic, orthodox Protestant churches? “Any person who shall be so wicked as to receive a holy ordinance of the Gospel from the ministers of the apostate churches will be sent down to hell . . . unless he repents of the unholy and impious act” (Seer, I, II, 255).
Article 12: “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers and magistrates, in obeying, honoring and sustaining the law.” Then why come up with the following? “The (Mormon) priesthood is the legitimate rule of God, whether in the heavens, or on the earth, and it is the only legitimate power that has a right to rule on the earth; and when the will of God is done on earth as it is in heaven, no other power will be or rule” (JD, V, 186).
Article 13. “We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul: ‘We believe all things, we hope all things,’ we have endured all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.” What fault can we find with this article? None, if it means what it says! But if it does, then why these words from Brigham Young? “I have many a time in this stand dared the world to produce as mean devils as we can. We can beat them at anything. We have the greatest and smoothest liars in the world, the cunningest and most adroit thieves, and any other shade of character that you can mention. We can pick out elders in Israel right here who can beat the world at gambling, who can handle the cards, who can shuffle them with the smartest rogue on God’s footstool . . . We can beat the world at any game. We can beat them because we have men here that live in the light of the Lord; that have the holy priesthood and hold the keys of the kingdom of God” (Deseret Eve. News, VI, 91). You can now plainly see that these articles as they stand by themselves do not in the least reveal the distinctively Mormon idea, nor their real and practical doctrines. There is not so much as a hint of these omitted doctrines in the published articles, unless we find it in Article 7: “We believe in the gift of tongues, prophecy, revelation, visions, healing, interpretation of tongues, etc.” Included in that “etc.” is all the above Mormon enlargement on the articles, with their doctrine of the “everlasting covenant of polygamy,” of baptisms for the dead (salvation for the dead), baptismal regeneration, the universal Fatherhood of God and the universal brotherhood of man, universal salvation, pre-existence of man, reincarnation, “the plurality of Gods,” the plurality of wives and conjugal love in heaven.
Beware of Mormonism’s pious, lamb-like mask, for beneath there lurks its true dragon character. Make an investigation of this cult, such as we have, “and who in his right mind could for one moment suppose” it to be of Jehovah God, or anything but a rank fake! “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (I John 4:1). “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matt. 7:15). “And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the Lord have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel” (Ezek. 14:9).