The Instigator
SethFiala
Pro (for)
The Contender
mrgrizzlie33
Con (against)

Mormon/LDS are Christian

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/1/2017 Category: Religion
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 377 times Debate No: 102326
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

SethFiala

Pro

Yes, Mormons/Latter Day Saints are Christian and a few good points that support this are...
-Their first article of faith (set of beliefs) says "We believe in God the Eternal Father and his son Jesus Christ and in the Holy Ghost"

-They use the bible (Both Old and New Testament)

-On their "Book of Mormon" it says "Another Testament of Jesus Christ" and in the book it talks about what Christ teaches.
mrgrizzlie33

Con

I am not sure whether I should debunk your previous claim or post my reasoning for disagreeing with your general statement.

So I will first post my opening statement and then proceed to debunk your claims.

Before I begin, I would like to note that I will only be listing 3 reasons why Mormonism is not Christianity. There are many many many reasons beyond these, but I will be listing 3 to begin. If more are requested, more will be provided.

So, without further ado...

3 Reasons (of the many) Why Mormons Are Not Christians.

1) Mormons are not Christians firstly in the fundamental area of theism: Mormons are polytheists, while Christians are monotheists.

-Both the Christian Old and New Testament, along with 2,000 years of Church testimony bear witness to this fact, as is demonstrated in Isaiah 43:10-11, 1 Timothy 2:5, and the First Council of Constantinople to name but one of each of the above mentioned testimonies.

-Mormonism on the other hand teaches that God was once a man, and that men can become gods. Joseph Smith, in his infamous King Follett discourse, said "God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! " It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for a certainty the Character of God, and to know that we may converse with him as one man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us; yea, that God himself, the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth, the same as Jesus Christ himself did."

Lorenzo Snow (5th President of the LDS Church) summarized the King Follett discourse in this way, "As man now is, God once was; as God is now man may be."

So thus I believe that it is clear that Mormons and Christians differ greatly on the most basic level of religion: the breed of theism.

2) Joseph Smith believed all churches other than his own were evil.

Some quotes of his to back this up:

"My object in going to inquire of the Lord was to know which of all the sects was right, that I might know which to join. No sooner, therefore, did I get possession of myself, so as to be able to speak, than I asked the personages who stood above me in the light, which of all the sects was right " and which I should join. I was answered that I must join none of them, for they were all wrong, and the personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in His sight: that those professors were all corrupt . . ."

"What is it that inspires professors of Christianity generally with a hope of salvation? It is that smooth, sophisticated influence of the devil, by which he deceives the whole world,"

John Taylor, 3rd President of the LDS Church, had this to say:

"We talk about Christianity, but it is a perfect pack of nonsense . . . Myself and hundreds of the Elders around me have seen its pomp, parade, and glory; and what is it? It is a sounding brass and a tinkling symbol; it is as corrupt as hell; and the Devil could not invent a better engine to spread his work than the Christianity of the nineteenth century,"

Again, as is painfully evident, Mormonism is not exactly friendly towards Christianity.

3) Mormon salvation is different from Christian salvation.

-Christian salvation is this:
that man was created by God for His glory, but rebelled against God and disobeyed, thus man is sinful and is deserving of eternal damnation because of God's justice and wrath against sin; that God is also loving and merciful, and wants to redeem His creatures; that no man can pay the price of his own salvation, for it is too great for a mere man to pay. To pay the 'bail' of his sentence on his own is impossible for a man, it requires the payment from a sinless being. This is why animals were used for justification in the Old Testament; that Christ is the Son in the Godhead and God himself, and because He is God He is sinless. Thus He can pay the price of not just one man's sins, but of all men. But it required Him PAYING the price. He did this by dying on the cross. He took the judgement that each and every man deserved; that if any man believes in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and confesses with his mouth that Jesus is Lord, he will be saved. (If you would like I can, in Round 2, provide Old and New Testament support for each statement made).

-Mormon salvation is this:
that men are the children of God and his Heavenly Wife (or Heavenly Mother if you look at things from our point of view); that men are judged based on their works; that Christ died for their atonement, but that you can only receive Christ's sacrifice after all you have done.

Thus Mormonism is, at it's roots (regarding salvation), a works-based salvation program, while Christianity is a grace-based salvation program.

Now, to briefly refute your opening remarks:

-As has been shown above, the god of Mormonism and the God of Christianity are distinctly different: the god of Mormonism is one among many, and was created, while the God of Christianity is the One and Only, and is from eternal past.
The Jesus of Mormonism is different from the Jesus of Christianity: the Jesus of Mormonism was too created, is the spirit brother of Satan, and is the literal offspring of god the father, while the Jesus of Christianity is uncreated, existing from eternity past, and is the Son simply in relation to his place in the Godhead.
Whilst on the subject of the Godhead, Mormonism rejects the fundamental Christian doctrine of the Trinity as well.

-Mormons use the Bible interpreted in light of the Book of Mormon. The BoM contradicts the historical Old and New Testament (as has been shown briefly above).

So, in closing, Mormonism has, at it's roots, very distinct differences between itself and Christianity, and actually was born out of supposed 'revelations' regarding the alleged 'wickedness' of all other Christian churches.
Debate Round No. 1
SethFiala

Pro

I would first like to thank you for accepting my challenge:
But I am afraid that you are wrong in the fact that regardless of what their prophets have been quoted on, out of context I might add, The Definition of a Christian is as follows...

Chris"tian
G2;krisCHən/
adjective
adjective: Christian
1.
relating to or professing Christianity or its teachings.

2.
a person who has received Christian baptism or is a believer in Jesus Christ and his teachings.
informal: Having or showing qualities associated with Christians, especially those of decency, kindness, and fairness.

So the reason Mormons are characterized as Christians is because of the simple facts that
1) They believe in Christ, and Christianity literally means the belief in Christ
2) Mormons are Baptized the same way christ was, by full submersion, and that is the second definition included.
3) The Leader of the Catholic Church (POPE) invited the Mormon Prophet to a christian leaders summit in the Vatican to discuss the world and where it is going.

If all of those reasons together; fitting the definition, following his teachings, and verification by the leader of the Catholic church (Who are widely accepted as christians) are not enough to convince you I would love to point you towards the Mormon Articles of Faith ( https://www.lds.org... ).
mrgrizzlie33

Con

I should be the one thanking you for instigating such an interesting, and shall I say, eternally important conversation.

I will henceforth rebuff your arguments instead of proposing a second argument as to why Mormons are not Christians.

A. To begin, I would like to question your source of the definition of a 'Christian'. I think it would logically make more sense to define a Christian using the biblical definition (and I hope you too would agree that this is the best and most helpful definition). So, let us examine a few scriptures regarding the definition of who is and who isn't a Christian.

(1) Let us first look at the word 'Christian'. In the Bible (and I am only using the New Testament as it is one of the two books (the other being the Old Testament) we seem to both accept as authoritative) the word Christian appears 3 times in the Bible (in Acts 11:26; 28:26; 1 Peter 4:16). This word was used to describe disciples of Christ, and obviously stuck. So, it would follow to look into what the Bible says about becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ.

(2) So we are searching for a biblical definition of a disciple of Christ. The definition of a disciple is someone who follows another. Thus applied to Christianity a disciple of Christ is one who follows Christ. To follow Christ is to follow His teachings. He taught that one must believe in Him to receive eternal life. Thus, the main criterion to be a disciple of Jesus is to believe in Him. But what does it mean to believe in Jesus?
As this article (https://www.gotquestions.org...) asks,

"Do you believe that Jesus is God in human form (John 1:1, 14)? Do you believe that Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sins (1 Corinthians 15:3; 2 Corinthians 5:21), for which you deserve eternal separation from God (Romans 6:23)? Do you believe that the sacrifice of Jesus, God incarnate, is the only adequate payment for your sins (1 John 2:2; John 14:6; Acts 4:12)?
Do you believe these things? If so, great, but believing the facts about Jesus is only part of the equation. Biblical faith/belief is far more than believing certain things to be true. Biblical saving faith is also trusting/relying on those facts.
A chair is a good illustration. You can look at a chair and believe it is made of materials strong enough to support your weight, and you can believe that it was assembled correctly. But that is not biblical faith. Biblical faith is sitting in the chair. It is actually relying on the chair to hold your weight off the ground." This again is biblically based.

I think you would agree up to this point regarding what I have used to define a Christian. But the issue with Mormonism is that the Christ of the Bible is not the christ of Mormonism.

The christ of Mormonism was conceived through sexual intercourse.
Brigham Young stated:
"The birth of the Savior was as natural as are the births of our children; it was the result of natural action. He partook of flesh and blood---was begotten of his Father as we were of our fathers" (Journal of Discourses vol.8, p.115); and "when the Virgin Mary conceived the child Jesus, the Father had begotten him in his own likeness [flesh and blood]. He was not begotten by the Holy Ghost" (Journal of Discourses, vol.1, p.50).
Brigham Young insisted: "I will say that I was naturally begotten; so was my father, and also my Savior Jesus Christ...he is the first begotten of his father in the flesh, and there was nothing unnatural about it" (Journal of Discourses vol.8, p.211); "Now remember from this time forth, and for ever, that Jesus Christ was not begotten by the Holy Ghost" (Journal of Discourses, vol.1, p.51).
Also,
"Bruce McConkie (LDS apostle) states: "Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers" (Mormon Doctrine, p. 547, 1979).
Carfred Broderick (Mormon author) writes: "God is a procreating personage of flesh and bone...latter-day prophets have made it clear that despite what it says in Matthew 1:20, the Holy Ghost was not the father of Jesus...The Savior was fathered by a personage of flesh and bone" (Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn, 1967, p.100-101)." (http://wri.leaderu.com...)

The Christ of the Bible is in spirit eternal, and uncreated. John 1 reads "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not."
Jesus' physical earthly body is of the miraculous conception of the Holy Spirit.
"The Lord Himself shall give you a sign: Behold a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel" (Is. 7:14).
"Now the birth of Christ was as follows. When His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit"for that which was conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit" (Matt. 1:18,20).
"Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?". And the angel answered and said to her "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you"" (Luke 1:34-5)."

The christ of Mormonism was a polygamist.
Orson Pratt stated: "the great Messiah who was the founder of the Christian religion, was a polygamist...marrying many honorable wives himself"God the Father had a plurality of wives"the Son followed the example of his Father"both God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ inherit their wives in eternity as well as in time" (The Seer, p.172, 1853).
Jedediah M. Grant stated: "the burst of public sentiment in anathemas upon Christ and his disciples, causing his crucifixion, was evidently based on polygamy"a belief of a plurality of wives caused the persecution of Jesus and his followers" (Journal of Discourses, vol. 1, p.346).

The Christ of the Bible is the Bridegroom of the Church, His bride.
"For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is head of the church...love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church...A man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great, but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church" (Eph 5:23-32).
Also, the Bible forbids polygamy, calling it an abomination (Deut 17:17; see also section on polygamy). Since Jesus was a spotless lamb (1 Peter 1:19; Heb. 9:14) without sin (Is. 53:9; 2 Cor. 5:21), he could not have committed polygamy.

Unfortunately, the 8,000 character limit prohibits me from listing more contrasts between the christ of Mormonism and the Christ of the Bible and history. To see a full list of these contrasts displaying why the christ of Mormonism is not the Christ of the Bible, please read this article: http://wri.leaderu.com....

This is at the heart of our disagreement. If the Messiah of the LDS church is the same as the Christ of the Bible, history, and Bible-believing Churches, then yes, Mormonism is a part of Christianity. But as has been displayed (though not to any degree exhaustively) here, this is not the case.
Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by jeditommy02 1 year ago
jeditommy02
A few quick things I forgot to mention: Mormons only believe in one God. mrgrizzlie33 didn't do enough research on them, or is just believing a bunch of lies. One of the ten commandments is to have "no other gods before me". Also, polygamy happened a long time ago. Only the pioneers did that. The guy on the show Sister Wives was a Mormon, but was excommunicated for having more than one wife. Honestly, when have you ever seen anybody with more than one wife? SethFiala is 1000% correct.
Posted by jeditommy02 1 year ago
jeditommy02
A few quick things I forgot to mention: Mormons only believe in one God. mrgrizzlie33 didn't do enough research on them, or is just believing a bunch of lies. One of the ten commandments is to have "no other gods before me". Also, polygamy happened a long time ago. Only the pioneers did that. The guy on the show Sister Wives was a Mormon, but was excommunicated for having more than one wife. Honestly, when have you ever seen anybody with more than one wife? SethFiala is 1000% correct.
Posted by jeditommy02 1 year ago
jeditommy02
I think Mormons ARE Christians. They believe that Jesus Christ is the savior, they celebrate Christmas and Easter, and they go to church on Sunday. If that doesn't define a Christian, I don't know what does. Pretty much the only differences are that they have a living prophet, they have more restrictions, and that God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit are three separate beings. I'm not sure what normal Christians do, but I know this is close. I am a Mormon, so I know what I'm saying about them. Please let me know if I said anything wrong.
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