WHY MORMONS AND JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES ARE NOT CHRISTIANS - Answering the Question: "Why do you say that Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses are not Christians. Don't they believe in Jesus?"
The Mormon religion (officially known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints or LDS) and the Jehovah’s Witness organization (also known as the Watchtower) both share a common foundational doctrine: They claim that Christianity became corrupt at the death of the New Testament apostles. They assert that through their religion alone, God has restored the lost and corrupted elements of the Christian faith so that only those who practice their religion possess the purest form of Christianity.
When challenged by non-members that they are not “Christians” because they deny many of the doctrinal tenets of the original Christian faith, often Jehovah’s Witness and Mormon adherents take offense. Reasoning that they “believe in Jesus Christ,” they question why anyone would consider them “unchristian.” In response to these assertions we ask:
1. If the confession that one "believes in Jesus Christ" is sufficient to qualify one as a "Christian", how do we reconcile this with Jesus' statement in Matthew chapter seven?
It is apparent that the people in Jesus’ example thought they were Christians. Even though they may have performed many works in Jesus’ name as proof of their religious devotion, Jesus rejected them with the statement, “I never knew you.” Given Jesus’ preceding warnings about “false prophets” who would masquerade as followers of Jesus Christ (verse 15), is it any wonder Jesus commanded us to test the “fruit” of religious teachers before embracing them into the fold (verse 20)? This brings us to our second question:
2. Suppose we evangelical Christians were to claim that we are “Mormons” because we “believe in Jesus Christ,” but we deny the Book of Mormon and teach that Joseph Smith was a false prophet. How would a LDS person feel about us claiming to be “Mormon” when we reject the basic tenets that underlie the LDS religion?
In the same way that a Mormon or a Jehovah’s Witness would not be pleased with someone who claims to follow their religion but who rejects the fundamental tenets of their faith, so it is with true Christians. The following chart analyzes many of the Christian doctrines that the Jehovah’s Witness and Mormon religions either deny or distort:
Many of the people involved in these groups are sincere and are often the nicest, moral people one will ever meet. However, they have been deceived by a counterfeit religion that on the surface looks good, but is leading many into spiritual darkness. It doesn't matter how many articles of "sheep's clothing" they put on as they perform good "works" in the "name of Jesus Christ;" if their doctrinal "fruit" fails the test, they will experience the spiritual destruction accorded to those who follow "false prophets."
3. If Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses are "Christians" just like we are, why do they send Missionaries to our doors to convert us to their beliefs?
To the Mormons who proclaim that they are Christians just like we are, we ask the following questions:
In context, there is no question that the Book of Mormon is proclaiming that the churches of Christianity collectively comprise the "church of the devil." The preceding verse (1 Nephi 14:9) speaks of a "great and abominable church...whose founder is the devil," and 1 Nephi 13:26 identifies this "abominable church" as none other than the church that had possession of the Bible after it was delivered from the hands of the original apostles.
In contrast to the claims of Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons who insist that a restoration of true Christianity was needed as a result of a complete apostasy from the original faith, Jesus proclaimed: "...I will build My church; and the gates of Hades shall not overpower it" (Matthew 16:18). Since Jesus promised to protect His Church, how could the Christian church have apostatized to the point of needing a new religion to be developed in order to restore it to the earth? The Apostle Paul warned about those who would arise to draw disciples "after themselves" when he stated:
Indeed, we would do well to heed the words of Scripture and prove all things before welcoming into the fold of “Christianity,” all churches claiming adherence to Christ.
* Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are from the New American Standard Bible
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