07 July 2010

The roots Mormonism shares with Rome (part 1)

When Satan wants to lead people away from God, he doesn't necessarily put up a new building--he simply changes the name of the business and hangs a new sign out front.

"She is termed, in other places, by the same prophet, "The whore of all the earth," making the nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. Some three centuries ago there came out sortie excellent men, named Martin Luther, John Calvin and many others that might be mentioned, who protested against the wickedness and abominations of the Church wherein they had been educated, and of which they had been members. Because of their protestations against the mother Church they were called Protestants."--Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses Vol. 14, p.346

Orson Pratt is, in the above quote, making an obvious reference to the Roman Catholic Church. And lest you think this is simply his opinion, this thought is recorded in Mormon "Scripture" in two places. Furthermore, you can find many other quotes from early Mormon leaders referring to the Vatican in like manner at this link.

Doctrines and Covenants (D&C) 88:94--"And another angel shall sound his trump, saying: That great church, the mother of abominations, that made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, that persecuteth the saints of God, that shed their blood—she who sitteth upon many waters, and upon the islands of the sea—behold, she is the tares of the earth; she is bound in bundles; her bands are made strong, no man can loose them; therefore, she is ready to be burned. And he shall sound his trump both long and loud, and all nations shall hear it."

1 Nephi 14:10-11--10 And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth. 11 And it came to pass that I looked and beheld the whore of all the earth, and she sat upon many waters; and she had dominion over all the earth, among all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people.

Granted, Mormonism did not spring forth from the Roman church--but they are, shall we say, born from the same root system, and they both have the same father. And whether they want to admit it or not, the LDS church has more in common with the Roman church than they do with true Christianity. It is as if Satan led Joseph Smith to simply take the structure and hierarchy of Romanism, throw in some Hinduism with it, plagiarize the King James Bible, and sprinkle in just enough Christian terminology (not to mention repeating the phrase "And it came to pass" ad nauseum) to fool countless numbers of folks.

The purpose of this post is not to defend the Vatican. Nor is it to begin a debate about Romanism. What I endeavor to do, though, is to show that as much as the early Mormon church railed about the Romish church being "The Whore of Babylon" and so forth, there are many beliefs and structures in Mormonism that show that the Mormon church is not that different from their Papal cousins.


They both teach that after you die, someone else can come along and perform rituals that will help improve the state you are in.

--Catholicism has indulgences.
  • 2nd Maccabees 12:43--And making a gathering, he sent twelve thousand drachmas of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection.

--Mormonism has baptism for the dead.

  • D&C 128:18--It is sufficient to know, in this case, that the earth will be smitten with a curse unless there is a welding link of some kind or other between the fathers and the children, upon some subject or other—and behold what is that subject? It is the baptism for the dead. For we without them cannot be made perfect; neither can they without us be made perfect. Neither can they nor we be made perfect without those who have died in the gospel also.


They both have one man whom they claim to be "speaking for God." Around him is a group of men who claim to hold the "Keys to the Kingdom" and who choose his successor.

--Catholicism has the Pope and the College of Cardinals.
  • Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), paragraphs 881-883--881 "The office of binding and loosing which was given to Peter was also assigned to the college of apostles united to its head"...882 The Pope, Bishop of Rome and Peter's successor, "is the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful." "For the Roman Pontiff, by reason of his office as Vicar of Christ, and as pastor of the entire Church has full, supreme, and universal power over the whole Church, a power which he can always exercise unhindered." 883 "The college or body of bishops has no authority unless united with the Roman Pontiff, Peter's successor, as its head." As such, this college has "supreme and full authority over the universal Church; but this power cannot be exercised without the agreement of the Roman Pontiff."

  • CCC 100--The task of interpreting the Word of God authentically has been entrusted solely to the Magisterium of the Church , that is, to the Pope and to the bishops in communion with him.

--The Mormon church has their prophet/president along with the Quorum of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

  • D&C 107:9-10, 33-35--9 The Presidency of the High Priesthood, after the order of Melchizedek, have a right to officiate in all the offices in the church. 10 High priests after the order of the Melchizedek Priesthood have a right to officiate in their own standing, under the direction of the presidency, in administering spiritual things...33 The Twelve are a Traveling Presiding High Council, to officiate in the name of the Lord, under the direction of the Presidency of the Church...to build up the church, and regulate all the affairs of the same in all nations...34 The Seventy are to act in the name of the Lord, under the direction of the Twelve, in building up the church and regulating all the affairs of the same in all nations; 35 The Twelve being sent out, holding the keys, to open the door by the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

  • History of the Church, Volume 2, chapter 27--"Also the Twelve are not subject to any other than the first Presidency...and where I am not, there is no First Presidency over the Twelve."

  • Church News, June 20, 1992, page 3--"The most reliable way to measure the accuracy of any biblical passage is not by comparing different texts, but by comparison with the Book of Mormon and modern-day revelations." (Letter from the First Presidency to all member churches).

  • Ensign, July 1973, p. 18--"But it is a great thing to believe in the living prophets. Our salvation is contingent upon our belief in a living prophet and adherence to his word...His words, above those of any other man, ought to be esteemed and considered by the Church as well as by the world...Someone has said, 'That person is not truly converted until he sees the power of God resting upon the leaders of this church, and until it goes down into his heart like fire.' Some may wonder at such power and authority being vested in one man. 'Could he not lead us astray?' they ask. President Wilford Woodruff once said, 'The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as president of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the program. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so he will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty.' (Discourses of Wilford Woodruff [Bookcraft, 1946], pp. 212–13.) President Henry D. Moyle has said, 'The older I get and the closer contact I have with the President of the Church, the more I realize that the greatest of all scripture which we have in the world today is current scripture. What the mouthpiece of God says to his children is scripture. It is his word and his will and his law made manifest through scripture, and I love it more than all other.'" (BYU tri-stake fireside, January 1963.) (Online Source).


They both teach that you need other teachings besides the Bible. In fact, they say, you cannot understand the Bible without their own teachings and Traditions.

--The Catholic church has added the Catechism and Traditions.

  • CCC 80-82--80 "Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture, then, are bound closely together, and communicate one with the other. For both of them, flowing out from the same divine well-spring, come together in some fashion to form one thing, and move towards the same goal." Each of them makes present and fruitful in the Church the mystery of Christ, who promised to remain with his own "always, to the close of the age". 81 "Sacred Scripture is the speech of God as it is put down in writing under the breath of the Holy Spirit." And [Holy] Tradition transmits in its entirety the Word of God which has been entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. It transmits it to the successors of the apostles so that, enlightened by the Spirit of truth, they may faithfully preserve, expound and spread it abroad by their preaching." 82 As a result the Church, to whom the transmission and interpretation of Revelation is entrusted, "does not derive her certainty about all revealed truths from the holy Scriptures alone. Both Scripture and Tradition must be accepted and honored with equal sentiments of devotion and reverence."

--The Mormon church denies the accuracy of the Bible, and adds their Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price--along with the words of the current prophet/president.

  • Article of Faith #8--We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly; we also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God.

  • Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.10--"It was apparent that many important points touching the salvation of men, had been taken from the Bible, or lost before it was compiled."

  • Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 327--"I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers. Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors."

  • Book of Mormon, 1 Nephi 13:24, 26,28--24 "The book proceeded forth from the mouth of a Jew...it contained the fullness of the gospel of the Lord, of whom the twelve apostles bear record...26 And after they go forth by the hand of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, from the Jews unto the Gentiles, thou seest the formation of that great and abominable church...28 after the book hath gone forth through the hands of the great and abominable church, that there are many plain and precious things taken away from the book, which is the book of the Lamb of God. And after these plain and precious things were taken away it goeth forth unto all the nations of the Gentiles."

  • Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 29:3,10--"3 Many of the Gentiles shall say: A Bible! A Bible! We have got a Bible, and there cannot be any more Bible...10 Wherefore because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written."

  • Church News, June 20, 1992, page 3--"The most reliable way to measure the accuracy of any biblical passage is not by comparing different texts, but by comparison with the Book of Mormon and modern-day revelations." (Letter from the First Presidency to all member churches).

  • Ensign, November 1984, p. 7--"Men can get nearer to the Lord, can have more of the spirit of conversion and conformity in their hearts...can gain a better understanding of the doctrines of salvation through the Book of Mormon than they can through the Bible...there will be more people saved in the kingdom of God - ten thousand times over - because of the Book of Mormon than there will be because of the Bible."

More next week.

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