A quick look at the Bible clearly identifies Mormonism as apostate.
Is Mormonism mentioned in the Bible? Not directly, but the New Testament gives many warnings designed to prevent people from falling into apostasy, could these apply to Mormonism? Let’s explore some examples.
Paul wrote that “The time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions” (2 Tim 4:3)
During the Second Great Awakening it became quite popular to rebel against and condemn the established church and rally around restoring some lost truth and the impending apocalypse. Mormonism, Seventh Day Adventism, and Jehovah’s Witness were just a few of the groups created as an answer to these desires.
One sign of false teachers is that they “…..require abstinence from foods that God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.” (1 Tim 4:3)
Mormonism’s Word of Wisdom explicitly requires members to abstain from certain foods or else they will be barred from the temple and the highest heaven. Paul said that food regulations have “an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion”. (Col 2 :20-23)
Jesus said you could tell a false teacher by their fruits, and Peter said to look out for greed, deception and sexual immorality in particular.
Smith had a history of defrauding people, from a buried treasure scam all the way to an illegal bank. Far from a peacemaker, Smith usually escalated the violence he encountered. And he married sisters, a mother daughter set, and other men’s wives, perversions explicitly condemned in scripture.
Paul also warned to avoid people who would call themselves apostles, but would preach another Jesus (2 Cor 11:3-5), a different gospel (Gal 1:8-9), and doctrines contrary to what he taught (Rom 16:17). Time doesn’t permit an exhaustive survey, but these few points illustrate Mormon teachings that are simply irreconcilable with the Bible‘s.
And as there’s no evidence that these doctrines were taught or practiced until Mormonism, it‘s clearly not “the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” that Jude (1:3) instructs Christians to contend for, or “the traditions that you were taught by us”(2 Thes 2:15) that Paul tells Christians to stand firm in.
So Mormons must insist that the Bible has lost many truths that Joseph Smith restored. But there is simply no evidence for these assertions. Instead of all of Christendom turning apostate as the Mormons claim, the apostle’s warnings identify Mormonism as just another apostate group maligning and perverting the true church.
If like the Bereans we can be noble by examining the scriptures to see if these things are true, we can share in the compliment that Jesus gave the Ephesians who “tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false.” (Rev 2:2) For more information, check out ldsvideo.org.