Joseph Smith (Dec 23 1805 – Jun 27, 1844 (died at age 38)) was the leader and founder of Latter Day Saints movement also known as Mormonism. He was regarded as a self-proclaimed prophet. It is well recorded that even from a young age; Joseph was involved in the occult using seer stones (spirit stones) to search for buried treasures.
On Sept 22, 1823, (at the age of 17) Joseph said he had vision of an angel that led him to the ‘golden tablets’ inscribed with the history of the early american civilizations. It was supposedly found in the hills near his house in Manchester New York. In 1830 he published what he called the translations of these plates as the book of Mormon, and said he was chosen of God to restore the people to the state of the early church.
In 1831 Smith established a ‘city of Zion’ in western Missouri but was not ready accepted by neighboring people. Early settlers quickly began to rise up against him in the 1838 Mormon War, quickly defeating and imprisoning him.
After being removed from custody in 1839 Smith and his followers moved to Nauvoo Illinois where he served as mayor and commander of a large militia called the Nauvoo legion. He announced his candidacy for president in 1844.
In an attempt to order the destruction of a paper that revealed many of his polygamous acts and unbiblical doctrines of many gods, a great stir occurred among the citizens who rallied an attack and killed him.
This is a quick summary of their primary beliefs:
Adam-God doctrine – they believe that Adam is God the Father
God the Father of the bible was once a man (Adam) who was created by another god, whom was also created by another god, all the way up through the eternal god-chain of gods creating gods.
Mormon men will eventually become gods whom will eventually rule their own universe
Mormon women will eventually become goddess’s for their husband forever pregnant producing spiritual babies.
The Curse of Cain – refers to the people of black skin, they will not be allowed to be priests of God (abolished in 1978 from the book of Mormon)
Satan was Jesus brother
Plural Marriage- a man must have more then one wife to attain the highest degree of heaven.
Blood atonement (major sins in the church like apostacy, murder, adultery, interracial marriage) must be atoned for by the sinners blood.
The LDS church is the only true church as developed by Joseph Smith.
Salvation comes from being obedient to the church of LDS and the prophet Joseph Smith
There is no hell, only 3 heavens, one of which you will go to when you die. The highest heaven is reserved for Mormons.
Baptism- You can be baptized after death to save your soul.
Truth – Baptism is a confession from your heart that you want to die to yourself and live for God. It cannot be forced upon you either in life or death by anyone else.
CRITICISM & APOLOGETICS
First of all it needs to be addressed that biblical archaeology always consistently confirms the bible and the history not only of the biblical accounts but reveals the culture of related non-biblical surrounding. If archaeology seems to continually contradict the claims of any book, it’s a significantly high probability the documentation is probably false.
The Golden Tablets
Smith claims to have found the tablets on Sept 22, 1823 at a hill near his home in Manchester NY. An angel directed him to dig up a stone box and didn’t allow Smith to take the tablets at first because Smith didn’t follow the angels instructions. In 1827 after 4 annual attempts, Smith finally returned home with the tablets and was told by the angel not to allow anyone to look at them until they where translated form their original ‘Egyptian reformed’ language.
Smith translated them using a ‘seer stone’ that he always carried with him in his hat by placing it over his face to view the written words inside the stone (apparently his seer stone was transparent to some degree). In 1830 he published the book of Mormon.
11 other men proclaimed to have seen the tablets, and after the translation Smith said he returned the tablets to the angelic guardian, thus they cannot be reexamined.
The book of Mormon itself proclaims that the golden tables where scribed by 2 pre-columbian prophets around 400AD: Mormon and his son Moroni, and wrote everything on these plates in reformed Egyptian language.
The book of Mormon describes pre-Columbian civilizations in the American continents, and how the ancient Native Americans lived. If the events described where true in the book of Mormon, artifacts that should exist in America that point the previous existence of horses, asses, bulls, goats, oxen, sheep, barely, grapes, olives, figs, wheat, coins, wheels, metal swords, brass armor, chariots, glass, and golden plates. All of these objects where simply never used in America because the Native Americans had no access to any of these nor ever used them, and if they had, they would probably not have been defeated by European armies, and the non-existent race that supposedly built great temples and cities, the Nephites, simply never existed based on all archaeological and historic evidence.
Criticism of the Book of Mormon
Many portions of the Book of Mormon are strikingly similar to the fiction story of Solomon Spaulding whom wrote about fictional civilizations in pre-Columbian America.
The methods of translation and revelation are completely different than any method that God used to reveal the bible to mankind.
Joseph Smiths methods are severely based on using witchcraft and spiritism with a seer stone to translate the book of Mormon, which is strictly forbidden in the bible.
When comparing how the God of the bible reveals truth to people, it remains accurate to history, science and archaeology. The book of Mormon was reveals through one person, who gave an account of everything without any proof at all.
The conclusion after examining the accounts of the golden plates results in the idea they have never been found or realistically seem by any person on earth, they were made up by Joseph Smith.
Egyptian Reformed Characters
A Copy of the characters Joseph Smith supposedly used to translate the book of Mormon. This is the reputed transcript of the ‘Egyptian reformed’ characters which Joseph Smith said he used to help him translate the text. Every known Egyptologist and linguists that has viewed these characters admits that they display no known correlation to any Egyptian language or any other known language. They admit that it is most likely a made up set of characters that display no meaning, and cannot be found anywhere else in the world.
Problems in the Book of Abraham and Egyptian Scrolls
The book of Abraham was a supposed Egyptian papyrus which came into Joseph Smiths possession in 1835. He claimed that the scrolls where written by the biblical Abraham whom he ‘channeled’ through his own body. Smith’s translation is accepted by the LDS as part of doctrine in the ‘Pearl of Great Price.’ Along with this he produced the ‘Egyptian Grammar’ based on his translation.
Modern Egyptian scholars whom have examined his work agree that the scrolls where just common Egyptian funeral scrolls that had nothing to do with Abraham, from a time period 2000 years after Abraham. Examinations of the ‘Egyptian Grammar’ have been said by Egyptologists that Smith had no notion of the Egyptian language and that he made it up.
The torn scroll can clearly be seen portraying the performance of a Egyptian funeral ritual with the priest over the mummy, and the jars for the persons organs underneath the sarcophagus.
Native American Language
The Book of Mormon claims that the ancient inhabitants of America spoke ‘reformed egyptian’ and Hebrew. If this was true then we sould find at least a few areas, walls, inscriptions or artifacts revealing this. All of the ancient civilizations of the Native Americans reveal a language and dialec different then any other pre-columbian wolrd language systems.
World writings in the New World in pre-Columbian contexts have frequently appeared in newspapers, magazines, and sensational books. None of these claims has stood up to examination by reputable scholars. No inscriptions using Old World forms of writing have been shown to have occurred in any part of the Americas before 1492 except for a few Norse rune stones which have been found in Greenland. – Smithsonian Institute’s Eighth Statment
Battle of Cumorah Hill, NY
The book of Mormon claims that a major battle raged on this hill in pre-columbian times and hundreds of thousands of people died. (Mormon 6.6, 10-15). No evidence, bodies, artifacts, armor weapons anything has ever been found in this location. All around the world, areas of ancient battles still have some remains found even to this day, but this area yields no physical evidence at all.
There were many prophecies uttered by not only Joseph Smith himself, but many of his followers whom were also supposed to be inspired prophets. It would be one thing to consider if a few of the prophecies where disputed or undetermined; but the plain fact of every one withstands that EVER prophecy they ever pronounced, was specified with exact events, dedicated to a specific time and place and they NEVER happened at all.
Dark Skinned People
Will not get their restrictions removed from being able to become priests until the “far future, on some other world” – Joseph Fielding Smith — Answers to Gospel Questions, vol. 2, p. 188 (1958)
Ban on Blacks receiving Mormon priesthood was lifted in 1978 after intense social pressure from both within and without the Mormon Church.
A person of Jewish blood will always apostatize from the LDS faith. – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, p. 142 (December 12, 1854)
Many ‘Jewish’ blood people died as Mormons
Cain and his posterity will remain cursed and not receive the priesthood until all other children of Adam have had this privilege. – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 2, p. 143 (December 12, 1854)
The mark of Cain is a flat nose and black skin. – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 7, p. 290 (October 9, 1859)
What is most interesting is Mormons used to discriminate African Americans as those with the ‘mark of Cain’ but most historians agree that African’s are the descents of Cush and Mizraim the older son of Ham, not descendants of Cain!
The curse will remain on blacks so that they can never hold the Mormon priesthood until all other descendants of Adam have received the promises and enjoyed the blessings of the Priesthood. – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 7, p. 291 (October 9, 1859)
This edict was actually abolished in 1979
The present struggle (Civil War) will not free the descendants of Ham who are slaves. – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 10, p. 250 (October 6, 1863)
Proven false when the north won the civil war in 1865 and ended slavery.
New Jerusalem & the Temple
A city shall be built, New Jerusalem [State of Missouri], in which a temple shall be reared in this generation. – Joseph Smith— Doctrine and Covenants 84:3-5 (September 22 & 23, 1832)
First of all it never happened in Smiths ‘generation’ or anytime in the preceding generations (after 1832!), second, this contradicts the Bible which reveals the New Jerusalem will be built in Israel, not in America.
City of Zion, Missouri shall “become glorious, very great and very terrible,” and “Surely Zion is the city of our God, and surely Zion cannot fall, neither be moved out of her place. – Joseph Smith – Doctrine and Covenants 97:18-20 (August 2, 1833)
Mormons will return to Zion, the only place God has appointed for the saints. Zion is Independence, MO. – Joseph Smith – Doctrine and Covenants 101:16-21 (December 16, 1833)
The Mormons were driven out of Missouri in 1838.
Far West is to be a holy city and the location of the Lord’s House. – Joseph Smith – Doctrine and Covenants 115:7-12 (April 26, 1838)
No temple was ever built there. Also contradicts the bible the Temple of Jerusalem will be built in Jerusalem, in Israel.
The churches [LDS congregations] should “be in readiness to move to Jackson County in two years from the eleventh of September next, which is the appointed time for the redemption of Zion. … you will learn by this we have a great work to do, and but little time to do it in;” – Joseph Smith — History of the Church, vol. 2, p. 145 (August 16, 1834)
A temple shall be reared in the Center Stake of Zion in the generation in which the the revelation was given. – George Q. Cannon— Journal of Discourses, vol. 10, p. 344 (October 23, 1864), cf. D&C 84 prediction of temple to be built in Zion, Missouri.
The Lord will return the Mormons to Zion in Jackson county Missouri. – Orson Pratt — Journal of Discourses, vol. 13, p. 138 (April 10, 1870)
“God promised in the year 1832 that we should, before the generation then living had passed away, return and build up the City of Zion in Jackson County.” – Orson Pratt — Journal of Discourses, vol. 13, p. 362 (May 5, 1870)
“God said in the year 1832 …” – Orson Pratt — Journal of Discourses, vol. 17, p. 111 (June 14, 1874)
“as the Lord lives we will build up Jackson County in this generation” – Brigham Young — Times & Seasons, vol. 6, p. 956 (April 6, 1845)
The Lord’s Return
Prophecy about the Lord’s return by Lyman Wight.
John Whitmer— History of the Church, vol. 1, p. 176 (June 1831)
Contradicts the bible, Jesus said no one will know the day or hour of His return, and it never happened.
Joseph Smith made known to him in vision and by the Spirit that the coming of the Lord was nigh, 56 years should wind up the scene.
Joseph Smith— History of the Church, vol. 2, p. 182 (February 14, 1835)
Prophecy by the authority of Jesus Christ of a soon to come time of bloodshed, pestilence, hail, famine and earthquake.
Joseph Smith— History of the Church, vol. 1, p. 315 (January 4, 1833)
Nothing happened soon after to match this.
Joseph’s father’s prophecy that Joseph would continue in the Priest’s office until Christ comes.
Joseph Smith’s Father— History of the Church, vol. 1, p. 323 (January 23, 1833)
Joseph Smith died in 1844 from a rioting crowd.
Joseph Smith said “I prophesy in the name of the Lord god of Israel, unless the United States redress the wrongs committed … in a few years the government will be utterly overthrown and wasted, and there will not be so much as a potsherd left” – Joseph Smith — History of the Church, vol. 5, p. 394 (May 18, 1843)
Joseph Smith – “I prophesy in the name of the Lord God of Israel, anguish and wrath and tribulation and the withdrawing of the Spirit of God from the earth await this generation, until they are visited with utter desolation. … I prophesy they never will have power to kill me till my work is accomplished, and I am ready to die.” – Joseph Smith— History of the Church, vol. 6, p. 58 (October 15, 1843)
Said a year short before he died, and the rest of it never happened.
Other False Prophecies
Treasure in Salem
Treasure, gold and silver, would be found in Salem, Massachusetts and would be theirs.
Joseph Smith – Doctrine and Covenants 111:1-11 (August 6, 1836)
No Such Treasure exists in Salem, Massachusetts
David Patterson will go on a Mission
“Verily thus saith the Lord …” David Patten to go on a mission the following spring (1839). – Joseph Smith — Doctrine and Covenants 114:1-2 (April 17, 1838)
In fact, Patten died in battle, Oct. 25, 1838. — History of the Church, vol. 3, p. 171 (October 25, 1838)
The name of Oliver Granger shall be had in sacred remembrance from generation to generation, forever and ever. – Joseph Smith – Doctrine and Covenants 117:12-15 (July 8, 1838)
John Bennett Will Be Great
Joseph Smith had a Revelation regarding John C. Bennett who is to help Joseph Smith, “And for his love he shall be great” – Joseph Smith— Doctrine and Covenants 124:16-17 (January 19, 1841).
Joseph made Bennett mayor if Nauvoo, but soon after and unknown to Joseph, Bennett had abandoned his wife and family in Indiana and professed himself to be Nauvoo’s most eligible bachelor (Joseph Smith the Mormon, p. 147-148).
Joseph later pronounced Bennett: “It is evident that his general character is that of an adulterer of the worst kind. … More than twenty months [since the Fall of 1840] ago Bennett went to a lady in the city and began to teach her that promiscuous intercourse between the sexes was lawful and no harm in it, and requested the privilege of gratifying his passions; … and in order to finish the controversy, said and affirmed that I both taught and acted in the same manner” — History of the Church, vol. 5, p. 42.
LDS Elders Like Kings
Before 26 years go by LDS elders will be as much thought of as kings on their thrones.
Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 4, p. 40 (August 31, 1856)
Brigham Young As President
Brigham Young will become President of the United States.
Heber C. Kimball— Journal of Discourses, vol. 5, p. 219 (September 6, 1856)
Never Became President
“The only men who become Gods, even the Sons of God, are those who enter into polygamy.” – Brigham Young — Journal of Discourses, vol. 11, p. 269 (August 19, 1866)
The Bible Says that Gods original plan for marriage was 1 man, and 1 woman
Congress Relinquish of Polygamy
For Congress to demand relinquishment of polygamy is to ask for renunciation of entire faith. All talk of another revelation is childish babble. Mormonism is in its entirety revelation from God or nothing at all.
Brigham Young – Millennial Star, vol. 27, p. 675-676
This one is Very True; either Mormonism is all or nothing! By their own confessions they are nothing.
Plurality of wives is a law established by God forever. It would be easier for the United States to build a tower to remove the sun as to remove polygamy. – Heber C. Kimball – Millennial Star, vol. 28, p. 190
Polygamy has been banned in almost every state with very little opposition. It certainly didn’t take blotting out the sun to accomplish!
BIBLE VS THE BOOK OF MORMON
The original book of Mormon was published in 1830, but has had many revisions.
Bible Says – God the Father, Eternal Self efficient and existing one. Was never created but is creator of EVERYTHING! Only 1 God. Father is spirit and invisible (Jn 4.24, 1Tim 1:17, Isa 43.10-11, 44:6, 45:21-22, Num 23:19.)
Book of Mormon Says – Father God is a resurrected man with a physical body. Christ is a separate resurrected man with a physical body. Holy Ghost is a separate man with a spiritual body. 3 totally separate Gods – LDS
Bible Says -Bible the holy ghost and holy spirit is the same and uses the same word in the Greek (1Corin 3:16, 6:19)
Book of Mormon Says -Holy Ghost is a separate God from Father & Son- separate from Holy Spirit. Holy Ghost is a person, Holy Spirit is influence form the Father and not personal.
Bible Says -Virgin birth of Mary was real as the spirit of God overshadowed her and made her pregnant with the Holy Ghost Matt 1:18
Book of Mormon Says -God as a physical, resurrected man came down and had sex with Mary in the same way mankind conceive on earth, and say Matt 1:18 is in error – LDS
Bible Says -Jesus is the head of the church Col 1:18
Book of Mormon Says -Joseph Smith is the head of the church D&C 28:2-6
Bible Says -We are naturally prone to sin because of our nature Eph 2:3, Rom 5:6
Book of Mormon Says -Only some acts are sinful, its not in our nature to sin LDS
Bible Says -We will not be married in heaven, but instead we are all given to Christ (1Jn 5:12-13)
Book of Mormon Says -Exhaltation in celestial heaven we are given in marriage and have spirit children – LDS
Bible Says -There are only two places to go heave nor hell Matt 25:31-46
Book of Mormon Says -Heaven has 3 levels Celestian, Terrestrial, and Telestial for almost everyone
Bible Says -Hell is eternal punishment Rev 21.8, Matt 13.24-43, 47-50, Luke 16.26
Book of Mormon Says -Hell is just a place like jail, you go until you paid your debt to God.
DANGEROUS DOCTRINES OF MORMONISM
Spiritism and Communication with the Dead
Besides leading people away from the fundamental truths of the bible, the Mormon doctrine can be very dangerous in regards to how deeply rooted it is in magic and spiritism.
One of their practices that deeply convinces their followers are the séances they perform to contact their deceased and dead loved ones. When they retrieve ‘other worldly’ information it gives them a very compelling resource to be convinced they are learning the truth!
Mormons believe heavily in spiritism and calling upon he spirits of the dead to help them in their lives. This is one reason why Mormonism is so seductive and seems true is because it gives people real experiences with spiritual forces.
Unfortunately demons parade as spirits of light and spiritual of family members causing people to be indoctrinated by deception.
The Bible clearly states that we should in NO WAY consult with any spiritual forces or spirit other the Lord Himself! Contacting familiar spirits is strictly forbidden and is an abomination, in deut.
Burning in your Bosom
Mormons will claim that if you believe you will feel the burning in your bosom that confirms in your spirit that Mormonism is true. Humans cannot rely on feelings along to guide them to the truth. The bible says the heart is desperately wicked above all things. Many people have been confident of their feelings but later have found out it was the wrong decision (Matt 7.21-22)
Once again, based on the fact that this religion is heavily dealt in spiritism, these are similar sensations that witches and spiritists get when they are contacting demons and spirits of the dead. This feeling is a warning not a confirmation!
We have to remember that God gave us both a heart and a mind. If we experience something that contradicts with the gifts and abilities God has given us, it should lead us to questions its validity. Just because we experience a burning emotionally, it needs to be backup with reasonable intelligent examination of the information. If Mormonism has a lot of problems with archaeological and prophetic apologetics, and the Bible retains its reliability, then your rationality would be pointing more towards Christianity for spiritual truth.
After examining all the evidence there is no direct link to prove that anything Joseph Smith claimed was anything more than a story of fiction conjured up by his own person believes about a pre-America history that never happened.
The book of Mormons doctrine seriously conflicts with the biblical doctrine, to the point that it makes up its own different religion and different god; therefore you in the end have to say that one of them is at fault!
The bible has many proofs with very few questionable claims out of thousands. The book of Mormon has no credibility to any of its claims at all.
Don’t fear the Mormon Doctrine:
Besides, if we don’t believe the Mormon faith, its ok according to their own doctrine, we just won’t enter the highest heaven for a while, but get to go to a different heaven as long as we are good people according to man’s standards.
The God of the Mormons is not a fearful or powerful God; he is a simple and carefree god whom proclaims that we will all eventually be like him no matter what.
utlm.org – to reach mormons
book: mormonism: the way the seemeth right
book of Abraham- http://www.mrm.org/book-of-abraham