Who is the Jesus of
the Latter-day Saints?

A Comparison Between the Christ of
Christianity and the Christ of Mormonism

© Spotlight Ministries, Vincent McCann, 2007
www.spotlightministries.org.uk



Many Mormons tend to consider that there is only one Jesus, but the truth is there are actually many Jesus'! This is the same situation as that of the Apostle Paul's day:

"For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully." (2 Cor. 11:4).
The Jehovah's Witnesses say that Jesus is a created being who is also the archangel Michael, the Christadelphians believe that Jesus did not pre-exist but had his beginning in his birth on earth, the Jesus of Islam is simply a prophet and is in no way divine. Obviously, these Jesus’ cannot be the same. Each one of them is a different Jesus. So the question is, is the Jesus of Mormonism the same as that of Christianity? Let us consider some of the differences by comparing statements made by Mormon leaders and references in the Bible.

Mormon Jesus

'A' god. One of three seperate god's in the Mormon godhead who are among many gods in the universe: "I have always declared God to be a distinct personage, Jesus Christ a separate and distinct personage from God the Father, and the Holy Ghost was a distinct personage and a Spirit: and these three constitute three distinct personages and three God's." (Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 370.).

Christian Jesus

The one God (John 1:1, 20:28; Titus 2:13; 2 Pet. 1:1).

Mormon Jesus

Did not pre-exist as eternal God but rather became a god.: "He is the Firstborn of the Father. 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." (Bruce McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 1966, p. 129).

Christian Jesus

Has always existed from all eternity as eternal God (John 1:1, 8:58).

Mormon Jesus

Jesus is called Jehovah while the Father is called Elohim: "Among the spirit children of Elohim, the first-born was and is Jehovah, or Jesus Christ, to whom all others are juniors." (Joseph Fielding Smith, Gospel Doctrine, p. 70.).

Christian Jesus

Jehovah 'is' Elohim - the one God (hundreds of times the titles Jehovah and Elohim are used together to demonstrate that Jehovah 'is' Elohim (e.g.. Gen 2:4-22; Deut. 4:1; Judges 5:3; 1 Sam. 2:30).

Mormon Jesus

Spirit brother of Lucifer: "Long before you were born a program was developed by your creators...The principal personalities in this great drama were Elohim, perfect in wisdom, judgement, and person, and two sons, Lucifer and Jehovah." (Spencer W. Kimball, Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, pp. 32-33).

Christian Jesus

Creator of all things, including Lucifer, so cannot be his brother (Col. 1:15-20, John 1:3).

Mormon Jesus

Begotten sexually by a man - God the Father: "These name-titles all signify that our Lord is the only Son of the Father in the flesh. Each of the words is to be understood literally. Only means only; Begotten means begotten; and Son means son. Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers" (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 546-547).

Christian Jesus

Born miraculously of a virgin, not by a sexual act (Matt. 1:18; Luke 1:35).

Mormon Jesus

Unable to cover every sin: "But men may commit certain grievous sins - according to his light and knowledge - that will place him beyond the reach of the atoning blood of Christ." (Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1., p. 134).

Christian Jesus

All sins are atoned for by Christ (1 John 1:7).

Mormon Jesus

Not to be prayed to or worshipped "We worship the Father and him only and no one else. We do not worship the Son and we do not worship the Holy Ghost. I know perfectly well about what the scriptures say about worshipping Christ and Jehovah, but they are speaking in an entirely different sense - the sense of standing in awe and being reverentially grateful to Him who has redeemed us. Worship in the true and saving sense is reserved for God first, the Creator." (Bruce McConkie, Our Relationship with the Lord, Speech at BYU on March 2 1982).

"Nearly all prayers recorded in prayer books are formalistic and ritualistic and have little or no application to the personal problems and needs of the penitent persons who seek and desire the Lord’s guidance. As an indication of how far removed most of them are from the true form of prayer is the fact that many of them are not made in the name of Christ, while others are addressed directly to Christ…" (Bruce McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, p. 587, emphasis added)

Christian Jesus

To be prayed to, worshipped, and adored (Acts 7:59-60; 1 Cor. 1:2; Matt. 2;11; 14;33; John 9:38; Phil. 3:3; Rev 5:11-14).

Mormon Jesus

Mormons not encouraged to have a personal relationship with Jesus: "(Some "holier-than- thou" students) begin to pray directly to Christ because of some special friendship they feel has been developed. In this conception a current and unwise book, which advocates gaining a special relationship with Jesus, contains this sentence - quote: "Because the Saviour is our mediator, our prayers go through Christ to the Father, and the Father answers our prayers through his son. " Unquote. This is plain sectarian nonsense. Our prayers are addressed to the Father, and to him only. They do not go through Christ...You have never heard the First Presidency or the Twelve...advocate this excessive zeal that calls for gaining a so called special and personal relationship with Christ...never, never at any time have they taught or endorsed the inordinate and intemperate zeal that encourages endless, sometimes day-long prayers, in order to gain a personal relationship with the Saviour...I wonder if it is not part of Lucifer's system to make people feel they are special friends of Jesus when in fact they are not following the normal and usual pattern of worship found in the true Church." (Bruce McConkie, Speech at BYU on March 2 1982).

Christian Jesus

Christians can have a personal relationship with Jesus. We 'can' know Jesus (John 17:3; Matt. 11:28).



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Although it is quite rare, at times LDS leaders have made statements which demonstrate their recognition that the Christ of Mormonism and the Christ of Christianity are not the same Christ’s. This is, no doubt, partly due to wanting to be accepted as just another Christian church. Even so, ocassionaly one finds that an acknowledgement is given admitting that the LDS Church and other Christian churches have a different Jesus. For example, on June 20, 1998, the LDS Church News quoted Gordon Hinckley as saying:

"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. For the Christ of whom I speak has been revealed in this Dispensation of the Fulness of Times. He, together with His Father appeared to the boy Joseph Smith in the year 1820, and when Joseph left the grove that day, he knew more of the nature of God than all the learned ministers of the gospel of the ages"
Similarly, apostle Bruce McConkie said:
"but in a large and more realistic sense, false Christ's are false systems of religion that use his name and profess to present his teachings to the world. The cries, Lo, here,' and lo, there,' which went fourth in Joseph Smith's day, when some were contending for the Methodist faith, some for the Presbyterian, and some for the Baptist' (JS - H5), meant that each group of gospel expounders was saying , Lo, here is Christ; we have his system of salvation; ours is the true church; we know the way; come, join us" (Bruce R. McConkie, The Promised Messiah, p. 324).
So the question is, which is the true Jesus? They cannot both be true. The Mormon Jesus is not the Christian Jesus, and the Christian Jesus is not the Mormon Jesus (a fact that some LDS leaders appear to have recognized).

If we have a radically different view of who Jesus really it is reasonable to conclude that such a Jesus cannot save us. Surely, it is important to know that we have the right Jesus, because if we are in relationship to the right one we are right for all eternity, but if we are seeking the wrong Jesus we are wrong for all eternity.






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