“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Emanuel.” –Isaiah 7:14
The Christmas story is a fulfillment of this prophecy. Christmas is the time when Christians everywhere celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. The Bible describes this event in Matthew. 1:18,20:
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost….But while he thought on these thing, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.”
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) joins with other churches in celebrating the Christmas tradition, but who is the Jesus of the Mormon nativity? What do they teach about other churches and what do they believe about Christ?
Concerning other churches, Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism, was allegedly told by God to join no other church, “…for they were all wrong…all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that those professors were all corrupt,” (Joseph Smith History, 1:19) The Book of Mormon itself makes a very clear distinction between the Mormon church and all other churches when it says, “Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth.” – I Nephi 14:10. If the Mormon Church is the only true church on the face of the earth, then it follows that all other Churches must be false.
Rejecting the Traditional Christ
“In bearing testimony of Jesus Christ, President Hinckley spoke of those outside the Church who say Latter-day Saints ‘do not believe in the traditional Christ.’ ‘No, I don’t. The traditional Christ of whom they speak is not the Christ of whom I speak.” (LDS Church News, 6/20/98 p. 7)
“It is true that many of the Christian churches worship a different Jesus Christ than is worshipped by the Mormons or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” (LDS Seventy Bernard P. Brockbank, The Ensign, May 1977, p. 26)
Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie reinforces this teaching when he states, “…virtually all the millions of apostate Christendom have abased themselves before the mythical throne of a mythical Christ.” (Mormon Doctrine, pg. 269)
Who is the Jesus of Mormonism?
• The Mormon Jesus was conceived through “natural action” between God the Father and Mary.
“The birth of the Saviour was as natural as are the births of our children; it was the result of natural action. He…was begotten of his Father, as we were of our fathers.” (Emphasis ours) (LDS President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 8:115)
Brigham Young once described God as having, “… all the parts and passions of a perfect man, and his body is composed of flesh and bones…”(Emphasis ours) (LDS President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 19:64). This view of God lead Young to say, “When the time came that…the Saviour, should come into the world…the Father came himself and favoured that spirit with a tabernacle instead of letting any other man do it.” (LDS President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourse 4:218)
Christ Not Begotten of Holy Ghost…Christ was begotten of God. He was not born without the aid of Man and that Man was God!” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation 1:18)
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the most literal sense. The body in which He performed His mission in the flesh was sired by that same Holy Being we worship as God, our eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten of the Holy Ghost.” (LDS President Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson pg.7)
“…I will say that I was naturally begotten…also my Saviour Jesus Christ…he is the first begotten of his father in the flesh, and there was nothing unnatural about it.” (LDS President Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses 8:211)
“Christ…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.” (LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie, Mormon Doctrine pg.742)
“The Father had a Son, a natural Son, his own literal Seed, the offspring of his body.” (LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie, The Promised Messiah pg.355)
“He is the Son of God in the same sense and way that we are the sons of mortal fathers. It is just that simple.” (LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie, The Promised Messiah pg.468)
The above information is shocking and disturbing to Christians and Mormons alike. Many Mormons are not aware that their church leaders have made these statements. Some Mormons are even embarrassed to the point of denying that these are accurate quotes, but references have been included so that accuracy can be verified. Although Mormons claim to believe in the virgin birth, they redefine the term “virgin.” Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie states, “For our present purposes, suffice it to say, that our Lord was born of a virgin, which is fitting and proper, and also natural, since the father of the child was an immortal being. ” (Emphasis ours) (LDS Apostle Bruce McConkie, The Promised Messiah, p. 466) Regardless of whether Mary had physical relations with a mortal or immortal man, the fact remains that she could no longer be called a virgin. God the Father could not have physically impregnated Mary for the simple fact that God is not a physical man. Jesus said of the Father, “God is a Spirit…” (John 4:24) and that “…a spirit hath not flesh and bones…” (Luke 24:39)
• The Mormon Jesus’ Father was married to Mary
“…the virgin Mary must have been, for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father.” (LDS Apostle Orson Pratt, The Seer p. 158)
• The Jesus of Mormonism is brother to Lucifer
“Satan tempted…Christ…a momentous contest took place between two brothers, Jehovah and Lucifer, sons of Elohim…Christ was tempted by Lucifer.” (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 34)
“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, son of the morning. Haughty, ambitious, and covetous of power and glory, this spirit brother of Jesus desperately tried to become the Savior of mankind.” (LDS Seventy Milton R. Hunter, The Gospel through the Ages, p. 15)
• The Jesus of Mormonism is married with children
“…some of the Eastern papers represent me as a great blasphemer, because I said, in my lecture on Marriage, at our last Conference, that Jesus Christ was married at Cana of Galilee, that Mary, Martha, and others were his wives, and that he begat children.” (LDS Apostle Orson Hyde, Journal of Discourses 2:210)
“Jesus Christ was married…If he was never married, his intimacy with Mary and Martha, and the other Mary also whom Jesus loved, must have been highly unbecoming an improper to say the best of it.” (LDS Apostle Orson Hyde, Journal of Discourses 4:259)
“Jesus was the bridegroom at the marriage of Cana of Galilee…Jesus Christ…was married…whereby he could see his seed, before he was crucified…before the Savior died, he looked upon his own natural children, as we look upon ours.” (LDS President Orson Hyde, Journal of Discourses 2:82)
“We have now clearly shown that God, the Father had a plurality of wives, one or more being in eternity, by whom He begat our spirits as well as the spirit of Jesus His First Born…We have also proved most clearly that the Son followed the example of his Father, and became the great Bridegroom to whom kings’ daughters and many honorable Wives to be married.” (LDS Apostle Orson Pratt, The Seer, p. 172)
• The Mormon Jesus doesn’t save
“Christians speak often of the blood of Christ and its cleansing power. Much that is believed and taught on this subject, however, is such utter nonsense and so palpably false that to believe it is to lose one’s salvation. Many go so far, for instance, as to pretend, at least, to believe that if we confess Christ with our lips and avow that we accept him as our personal Savior, we are thereby saved. His blood, without other act than mere belief, they say, makes us clean.” (LDS tract, What the Mormons Think of Christ pg.22) When speaking about having a personal relationship with Christ, McConkie stated, “…they devote themselves to gaining a special, personal relationship with Christ that is both improper and perilous… This is plain sectarian nonsense.” (BYU Devotional, March 2nd 1982 pgs. 19-20) He continued with, “…fanatical sectarians… assure us they have been saved by grace…I wonder if it is not part of Lucifer’s system to make people feel they are special friends with Jesus when in fact they are not following the normal and usual pattern of worship found in the true Church.” (Ibid. pg. 22)
“One of the most fallacious doctrines originated by Satan…is that man is saved alone by the grace of God; that belief in Jesus Christ alone is all that is needed for salvation.” (LDS President Spencer W. Kimball, The Miracle of Forgiveness pg. 206)
“…for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” (Emphasis ours) (II Nephi 25:23) Notice that God’s grace comes only after you have done everything you can do. If we can do all that God requires of us, then grace would not be needed. According to the Book of Mormon, you must stop sinning completely before God will forgive you. “And I say unto you again that he cannot save them in their sins…”(Alma 11: 37)
Thankfully, the Biblical Jesus is not the Jesus of Mormonism. While the Mormon Jesus waits for us to stop sinning, the Biblical Jesus acts on our behalf. “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) The fact of the matter is that our sins put us in debt to God. The Bible states, “…For the wages of sin is death…” (Romans 6:23) That is a debt that we cannot afford to pay. Because of His love for us, the Biblical Jesus died in our place. “For by one offering (Himself) He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified…Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.” (Hebrews 10:14,18) Jesus once rebuked religious leaders for rejecting His offer. “And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.” (John 5:40) The Bible is clear that if we come to Jesus and ask for forgiveness, He will freely forgive. Which Jesus will you come to, the Mormon Jesus, who waits for you to stop sinning before he can act, or the Biblical Jesus who offers to save you now?