Counter-cult Bulletin: What do the Mormons and JW’s teach?


by Rob Lundberg

It has actually been a while since I have been into my counter-cult toolbox.  You see, when I first got into apologetics back in the 80’s, under the tutelage of the late Dr. Walter Martin, I did a lot of research and led a lot of workshops on cults and non Christian religions.

So I return to the toolbox to dive into it, shaking out the dust and will be posting some in this area.  But as part of my recent research, I found out that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints are heralding their bicentennial this year. On the other hand the Jehovah’s Witnesses most likely be thinking that Armageddon could happen soon, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and all the race rioting and violence. With both of these facts, I would not be surprised to find them ramping up their “evangelistic outreach” and knocking on doors soon. 

With that said, the information I am sharing in this post is very important. I would like to call it a warning bulletin with intel about these two non-Christian cults which began as response to the spiritual Awakenings that happened in the early mid 1800’s.  I am referring to the groups known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (a.k.a. Mormonism) and the Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW’s).

I believe that we need to expose their false teachings, and by doing so I hope that you will not fall prey to these groups that use Christian terms to lure people who mistakenly join either one of them. First I will present certain key teachings from the groups. At the end I will share with you what the historical Christian faith teaches in response to these heretical teachings.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (a.k.a. LDS or Mormonism) teaches the following:

  1. God used to be a man on another planet and Mormon men and women may become gods and goddesses of their own planets.[1]
  2. The LDS teaches that there are many many gods.[2]
  3. The LDS twists the doctrine of the Trinity by claiming that there are three separate Gods.[3]
  4. Entrance into the celestial heaven is by the consent of God and the Mormon Prophet Joseph Smith.[4]
  5. God is not a spirit but has a body of flesh and bones.[5]
  6. According to the LDS, God is married and produces spirit babies, in heaven, by   having physical relations with his goddess wife.[6]
  7. Jesus, Satan, and all of us are spirit brothers and sisters procreated in a pre-existent spirit life.[7]
  8. There is no virgin birth of Jesus.  According to the LDS Church, God had physical relations with Mary to make the body of Jesus.[8]
  9. Your own blood must be shed for the forgiveness of some sins.[9]
  10. Salvation is through good works.  Good works are necessary for the forgiveness of sins.[10]

When Mormon missionaries speak with you, rarely will they  mention these ‘higher’ doctrines. Instead, they will politely introduce Mormonism using Christian terms (i.e., Trinity, Jesus, salvation, etc.) but with non-Christian definitions.  Therefore, you will really not know what they are teaching until later after you have joined their cult. Be warned. Mormonism is a non-Christian cult.

The other cult, the Jehovah’s Witnesses (a.k.a. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society), teach:

  1. Their church is the prophet of God.[11]
  2. Jesus returned invisibly in 1914.[12]
  3. God governs the universe from the star Alcyone.[13]
  4. The Holy Spirit is God’s impersonal active force.[14]
  5. Only members of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society will be saved.[15]
  6. Jesus was an angel (Michael the Archangel) who became a man.[16]
  7. Jesus did not rise from the dead in the same body he died in.[17]
  8. The JW’s reject the Trinity stating that it is a late doctrine.[18]
  9. Good works are necessary for the forgiveness of sins.[19]

These doctrines are taught by the Jehovah’s Witness’ organization  known as the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society. Be careful. The Jehovah’s Witnesses will want to begin a home ‘Bible study’ with you and your  family. What they really want is for you to join their religious organization.  Then they will tell you that if you leave, you are doomed.

These groups are non-Christian cults because they deny the biblical doctrines of Jesus and salvation.

They each preach a false Jesus.  First, Mormonism says Jesus is the brother of the Devil.[7]   The Jehovah’s Witnesses teach that he is an angel who became a man.[16] Their teachings are false.

The Bible says that Jesus is God in flesh,[20]. He is worshipped[21] and prayed to.[22] He forgives sins.[23] He is the creator of all things[24], and He gives eternal life.[25] Both the Mormons and the Jehovah’s Witnesses distort and/or deny these truths.

Second, both these cults erroneously say that in order to be saved you must cooperate with God by doing good works determined by the heads of the cults’ organizations.

The Bible says  that salvation is a free gift from God.[26] (A gift cannot be earned.)  The Bible condemns the addition of our works to the finished sacrifice  of Jesus.[27]  Galatians 2:21 says that if salvation comes by works (“if righteousness comes through the Law“), then Jesus died needlessly.  Salvation comes by God’s grace through faith alone, not by our works plus God’s grace.[26]

Simply put, they each preach a false message of salvation.

What Does the Bible Have to Say in Response?

The Bible teaches:  There is only one God.[28] God is spirit.[29] Jesus’ sacrifice cleanses from all sin.[30]  Jesus is the only way to  God.[31] All who receive Jesus as Savior will be saved.[32] And Jesus rose from the dead in the same body He was crucified in, only glorified.[33]

These are some of the things the Christian church has always believed. These two cults distort them and thus lead many into eternal damnation. Why is this?  

Because…

Only the Jesus of the Bible saves: the one who is worshipped[21], prayed to[22], and called God[34].  Jesus is not the brother of Satan (Mormonism).  He is not an angel made into a man (Jehovah’s Witnesses), and not a church group. The false Jesus of the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses cannot save.  Faith works only when it is placed in someone who is true.

The people ensnared in the Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses are good people and we love them as those who are created in the image and likeness of the one TRUE GOD. However they are misled.[35] They do not know that the true gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus for our sins and that we receive His  forgiveness by faith alone (faith in the true Jesus). Satan has blinded them.[35] Jesus said that if the blind lead the blind, both will  fall into the pit.[36]  That is why I am exposing these cults, so you won’t fall into Satan’s trap.

If you want to be assured of the forgiveness of your sins and  have peace with God, then you must realize that you have sinned against God,[37] and are separated from Him.[38]  Then, ask Jesus into your life. Ask Him to forgive you of your sins, and save you. He will.[32] Will you not see Him today?

All you need to do is put your faith in the real Jesus, the One who is God[20], who is worshipped[21], prayed to[22], and the Creator of all things[24].  He is Savior and Lord and He is as close as the call of your heart and mind in prayer.  Once you have made that decision to follow Jesus, read your Bible (starting with just the gospels:  Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). Find a good Bible preaching apologetics minded pastor or church that believes in apologetics as means of discipleship.  I pray that this post will help you know which two not to join.

It is easier to prevent you from joining a cult than it is to get you out. Eternity is a long time to be wrong, especially about the real Jesus.

If you have any questions or would like to talk, then please contact us. I would be happy to talk with you at realissueapologetics@yahoo.com.

____________________
Notes

[1] Mormon Doctrine by Bruce McConkie, p. 321.
[2] Ibid., p. 163.
[3] Ibid., p. 319.
[4] Brigham Young, Journal of  Discourses, Vol. 7, P.289.
[5] Doctrine and Covenants 130:22.
[6] McConkie, p. 516.
[7] Ibid., pp. 192;589.
[8] Ibid., pp.741-742; The Seer, p. 158.
[9] Doctrines of Salvation by Joseph Smith, Vol. I p. 135.
[10] Articles of Faith, p. 79.
[11] The Watchtower, April 1, 1972, pp.197, 200.
[12] You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth, 1982, p. 147.
[13] Thy Kingdom Come, p. 327, 1967.
[14] Holy Spirit, 1976, p. 11.
[15] Ibid., Feb. 15, 1979, p. 30.
[16] Aid to Bible Understanding, p. 1152; New Heavens and New Earth, p. 30.
[17] You Can Live Forever..., pp. 143, 144, 172.
[18] Let God be True, p. 101.
[19] Studies in the Scriptures, Vol. I pp. 150,152.
[20] John 1:1,14, 8:58, 10:30; Colossians 2:9.
[21] Matthew 14:33, 28:9.
[22] Acts 7:59; 1 Corinthians. 1:1-2.
[23] Luke 5:20, 7:48.
[24] John 1:1-3,14. Colossians 1:15-17.
[25] John 10:28.
[26] Romans 6:23; 3:28; 4:5.  Ephesians 2:8-9.
[27] Galatians 3:1-2; 5:1-4.
[28] Isaiah 43:10; 44:6, 8.
[29] John 4:24.
[30] 1 John 1:7,2:2.
[31] John 14:6.
[32] John 1:12; Romans 10:9-10.
[33] Luke 24:39; John 2:19-21.
[34] John 20:28; Hebrews 1:8.
[35] 2 Corinthians 4:3-4.
[36] Luke 6:39.
[37] Romans 3:23, 5:12.
[38] Isaiah 59:2.


Rob is a blogger, writer and public speaker on a mission to equip the believer to think and articulate what they believe and to communicate the message of the gospel to a confused culture in a chaotic, “postmodern world.”robgoodgravatar

He is available to come and speak to your church, college group, or at your conference or workshop.
If you would like to check out his speaker profile click here.
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