Are Mormons Christians?

Posted: April 4, 2011 by Brett Kunkle in Choosing My Religion

I’ve been thinking a lot about Mormonism lately.  I’m currently writing an Ambassador’s Guide to Mormonism booklet for Stand to Reason.  And I just finished a weekend of training, for high school students from Upland Christian Academy, to prepare them for an upcoming “theological” missions trip to Utah later this month.

A very common claim from Mormons is that they are Christians.  I deal with this claim in detail in the Ambassador’s Guide but in the meantime, listen to Jeffrey Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles eloquently declare their Christianity:

  1. Sam Harper says:

    I really don’t see the usefulness of pursuing this topic for a few reasons:

    1. It offends Mormons unnecessarily. Mormons are more easily offended than most other religious people, I’ve noticed, and once they are offended, they don’t listen to you anymore.

    2. Jesus’ followers were not even called “Christians” from the beginning. It was a name they seem to have been given by outsiders that happened to stick. Obviously, nobody before that time was concerned about whether somebody was a “Christian” or not. They were only concerned with whether somebody was legitimately following Christ.

    3. The real issue ought to be whether the Mormon gospel is the same gospel as the one of the New Testament, and whether the Mormon gospel can save. I think that’s a better and less offensive way to address essentially the same topic.

  2. Brett Kunkle says:

    Sam, I guess you’re just going to have to buy the new Ambassadors guide. 😉

    I think the topic can be useful for two reasons. First, we need to clarify this issue for Christians. Amazingly, I have Christians tell me that Mormons are Christians and that I shouldn’t try to “take away their faith.” Certainly the LDS Church has pushed acceptance into mainstream Christianity for years. So Christians need help thinking through this and for that reason alone, we ought to address it.

    Bu second, by clarifying the issue with Mormons, I have been able to show them their offense is illegitimate and advance the conversation. Using Mormons Scriptures like the Pearl of Great Price 1:18-19 and 2 Nephi 22:13, we help clarify the Mormon claim: they are the true Christians and other “Christianities” are false forms. So their own Scriptures do the very thing they feel offended about. But then I assure them I’m not offended by their belief that I’m apostate and I help them see that the real issue is truth, pointing them to John 17:3, to make clear what is at stake. In summary, I think we can address the issue in such a way as to help the Mormon think more clearly and focus their mind on the primary questions: 1) Which god is the one TRUE God? and 2) Which gospel is the TRUE gospel?

  3. Grace Alone says:

    . First and foremost Mormons have another concept of who God and Jesus is and they have a different Plan of Salvation. You cannot try to fit a square into circle or make an apple an orange even if they are both fruits or eatable. To be a Christian denomination there must be agreement on who Jesus is and what he came to do with agreement on the same major essentials. Christians reject the Book of Mormon & Mormon Founder Joseph Smith as a Prophet who claimed he was given a new unique revelation which changed the major tenets of the original Gospel and teachings of the original Apostles and Church fathers. You will never see a Cross in or over a Mormon tabernacle but in the Christian faith the cross is essential to God’s saving grace because the major tenet of the Christian faith is that Jesus death on the cross paid the penalty for the sins of the Lord’s redeemed people and all who receive Jesus work of Redemption and trust him as their Lord and Savior have eternal life.

  4. Who do you say Jesus is? says:

    There is a chart comparison if you type in Mormonism vs Christianity!
    It is beyond sad how many people could not tell you what their religion teaches or the Plan of Salvation if their lives depended on it. The Gospel of Prosperity has eroded the church and many people are sitting in Churches that teach that God wants you wealthy and healthy. This is not the Gospel of Jesus Christ who said if anyone would come after him must deny himself and take up his cross and follow him. A cross was an instrument of death and suffering in Jesus day. Jesus also warned that their would be persecution and most of the original Apostles were Martyred for spreading the Gospel of Jesus death. burial and bodily resurrection!

  5. Who do you say Jesus is? says:

    In Christian bookstores Mormonism is listed right next to Jehovah Witnesses under theological cults so why is Pastor Jeffress of Dallas being persecuted for saying Mormonism is not the same as mainstream Christianity?