MORMON TERMINOLOGY HANDOUTS
There are many methods to witnessing and one thing we’ve learned over the years is there is no magic bullet, no special word and no two people that will respond to the same thing in the same way.
What we do know for sure is that it’s easier to have conversations with the Mormon people if you know how to speak their language. The Mormon vocabulary is unique – they’ve separated themselves from the masses by changing the meaning of words and phrases. Here’s a list of the major words they’ve changed and their meanings.
“Anti-Mormonism includes any hostile or polemic opposition to Mormonism or to the Latter-day Saints, such as maligning the founding prophet, his successors, or the doctrines or practices of the Church.” Encyclopedia of Mormonism, 45.
It doesn’t matter to the Mormon where the information against them comes from. If you argue with them or disagree in the slightest you are considered an ‘anti’. In the June 1946 edition of the Improvement Era Magazine published by the Mormon Church it says; “When the leaders speak, the thinking has been done”. I can assure the reader this is an insult to anyone who has a thinking brain.
Assurance of Salvation
Mormons do not have assurance of salvation. When you ask them “If you died tonight would you go to heaven”, no one will say yes.
John 11:40; “Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?”
Doctrines of Salvation, 1:130 says this about the cross; “We speak of the passion of Jesus Christ. A great many people have an idea that when he was on the cross, and nails were driven into his hands and feet, that was his great suffering. His great suffering was before he ever was placed upon the cross. It was in the Garden of Gethsemane that the blood oozed from the pores of his body: “Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit-and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink,”.”
John 19:30; “…It is finished.”
“The claim of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to be the only true and living church on the earth is centered on the concept of authority. The LDS belief has been well stated by President Joseph F. Smith: “As to the question of authority, nearly everything depends upon it. No ordinance can be performed to the acceptance of God without divine authority. Authority is a divine commission or calling from God….The name given to this kind of authority in the scriptures is priesthood (Heb. 7:11-12, 14, 24; 1 Pet. 2:5, 9; D&C 84:107).” Encyclopedia of Mormonism, pg. 88.
Jesus told everyone in Matthew 28:18-20; “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
He didn’t make exceptions to the ‘who, what, where, when and why and how’. He simply said, ‘go’. He also stated that He would be with us unto the end of the world. Three things come to mind with this: either Jesus lied, He was wrong or He gave us authority. The latter is what is consistent throughout the whole of the Bible. Someone once said that “the great omission of the Great Commission is not obeying”.
Bishop = Pastor
Child of God
The Mormon believes they are the literal offspring of God. They believe that in the pre-existence they were spiritually begotten through a sexual union of Heavenly Father and a Heavenly Mother. They believe that all spirits, Jesus and Lucifer included, are literally brothers and sisters thus making us all a child of God.
Have the Mormon think about the following: If it were true that we were all created before we came here to earth, then why does the Bible state that we must become children of God?
If Mormonism is correct and we were born before we came here to earth, then why didn’t Nicodemus ask Jesus if we needed to be born a third time? Instead, Nicodemus asked Jesus if he needed to be born a second time. More importantly in this passage is Jesus’ response. He said that we must be born of the spirit, intimating that this hadn’t taken place yet. You can read this in John 3:1-15.
“Intelligences were organized before the world was, and among these were many great and noble ones, such as Abraham and Moses. God stood in their midst, saw that they were good, and chose them for responsibilities on earth and throughout eternity (Abr. 3:21-23). Jesus, the firstborn spirit, was preeminent among them. “Jesus…existed with the Father prior to birth in the flesh; and…in the pre-existent state He was chosen and ordained to be the one and only Savior and Redeemer of the human race” (JC, p. 6).” Encyclopedia of Mormonism, pg. 1124.
Romans 8:15-6; “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.”
Christ vs. Jesus.
They will never refer to Jesus by His given name. They only refer to Him as Christ. If given the chance if/when they ask I explain the word “Christ” is a title not a name. I only use the “term” Jesus while in their presence.
“…CHRIST, CHRISTIANS, DISPENSATIONS. Christianity is the religion of the Christians. Hence, true and acceptable Christianity is found among the saints who have the fulness of the gospel, and a perverted Christianity holds sway among the so-called Christians of apostate Christendom. In these circles it is believed and taught that Christianity had its beginning with the mortal ministry of our Lord. Actually, of course, Adam was the first Christian…” Mormon Doctrine, pg. 132.
1 Nephi 14:9-10; “And it came to pass that he said unto me: Look, and behold that great and abominable church, which is the mother of abominations, whose founder is the devil. 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.”
1 John 3:14-5 says that we have a way to see who is saved and who is not: “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.”
Contentious = Anyone who disagrees with anyone LDS (subject matter is irrelevant).
Deacon = Priesthood held by male members from ages 12 up
Elder = Male priesthood holder ages 19 up (missionary)
Mormons believe the fall of Adam was a “necessary step in the eternal progression of mankind” (Encyclopedia of Mormonism, 485). They believe that is was planned in advance by God himself, 2 Nephi 2:24, otherwise Adam and Eve would not have been able to fulfill the law of bringing forth children. They also believe they ‘will be punished for their own sins and not for Adam’s transgressions’, 2nd Article of Faith. The book of Alma says that it was the will of the Father that Adam would sin to fulfill the spiritual and temporal deaths of mankind. Alma 42:6-12, and D&C 29:40-42.
The Bible says that Adam transgressed (sinned) and immediately God sent Adam and Eve out of His presence. Gen. 3:23. Ro. 5:17 says that through transgression came death but through the death of Jesus, who took our transgression, became our eternal life. Further into the chapter, verse 19, it says that through Adam’s disobedience we were all made sinners.
Family home evening is for Monday nights.
No other activities take place on Monday evenings. This is to gather as a family and learn about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. No television, phones, radio or internet.
There are billions of gods in Mormonism, but they deal with three primary figures in their ‘godhead’. There is God the Heavenly Father, his son after the manner of the flesh; Jesus, and the Holy Ghost. D&C 130:22 says that God and Jesus both have bodies of flesh and bones but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones but is a personage of spirit. Mormons believe that God was once a man like we are now and passed through his own school of learning and became perfect in order to become a god himself. This is also why Jesus came here to this earth; to do as his own father did. Gospel Through the Ages, pg. 104-5, 114.
The Bible says that God is One; Deut. 6:4, John 10:30. Is not a man; Hosea 11:9. There is no other Savior; Isaiah 43:10-11, 1 Tim. 2:5. Jesus is God; John 8:58 & Ex. 3:14. He’s always been God; Mal. 3:6, John 1:1, 14. Holy Spirit is God; Isaiah 9:6, John 14:23, 1 John 5:7.
God – Heavenly Father/elohim
As stated before, the Mormon god is an exalted man. They only refer to God as Heavenly Father or elohim. I use Father God while in their presence.
“That which is without body or parts is nothing. There is no other God in heaven but that God who has flesh and bones. John 5:26, “As the Father hath life in himself, even so hath he given the Son to have life in himself.” God the Father took life unto himself precisely as Jesus did. (Joseph Smith, The Words of Joseph Smith, p. 60; standardized).” Joseph Smith, Encyclopedia of Joseph Smith’s Teachings, pg. 290.
When the Mormon tells you that they only believe in the ‘god of this world’, show them 2 Cor. 4:4. They are only parroting what they’ve been told to say in response to this question. And when they tell you that they do worship elohim ask them which one they are worshipping because they are certainly not worshipping the Trinity so that only leaves us with one other possibility.
“How can the saints receive of his fulness and be equal with the Lord and not be as he is, that is, gods?” Doctrines of Salvation, 2: 36.
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that all resurrected and perfected mortals become gods (cf. Gen. 3:22; Matt. 5:48). They will dwell again with God the Father, and live and act like him… they will have the power of procreating endless lives. Latter-day Saints believe that Jesus Christ attained godhood… and that he marked the path and led the way for others likewise to become exalted divine beings by following him (cf. John 14:3).” Encyclopedia of Mormonism, 553.
For the Mormon it is difficult to wrap the mind around the fact that there is only ONE God and one Savior just as it says in Isaiah 43:10-11. This is where it is imperative that you use a dictionary. Words such as eternal, forever and before are good words to define in advance. With this type of ‘theology’ Mormons have qualified themselves as polytheists.
2 Nephi 25:23 says; “…for we know that it is by grace we are saved, after all we can do”.
“Salvation is attainable only through compliance with the laws and ordinances of the Gospel; and all who are thus saved become sons and daughters unto God in a distinctive sense.” James E. Talmage, Articles of Faith, pg. 422.
There is nothing you could ever say to the Mormon that would convince them they are saved by grace alone. Remember when witnessing to the Mormon you are simply planting a seed, the Holy Spirit is the one that does the convincing!
Mormons are racked with shame in believing they have never done enough for God and because of this they also believe that if they died today there is a good chance they wouldn’t go to heaven. Can you just imagine living and working your entire life for God and still be thinking this way? It is a desolate and degrading way to live life.
Eph. 2:8-9; “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
Romans 11:6; “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.”
Galatians 2:20-1; “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.”
“Latter-day Saints believe that all the people of earth who lived or will live are actual spiritual offspring of God the Eternal Father (Num. 16:22; Heb. 12:9). In this perspective, parenthood requires both father and mother, whether for the creation of spirits in the premortal life or of physical tabernacles on earth. A Heavenly Mother shares parenthood with the Heavenly Father.” Encyclopedia of Mormonism, 961.
There is absolutely nothing in the whole Bible that mentions anything about a ‘heavenly mother’ or heavenly father having spirit babies.
Holy Ghost vs. Holy Spirit.
Mormons do not refer to the Holy Ghost as the Holy Spirit. While Holy Ghost is biblically correct, they only believe that the HG can be in their presence when they are being extremely holy and obedient.
The Mormons do not believe the Holy Ghost is God. The Mormon Holy Ghost is a personage of spirit but nothing else. He has limited power and does not qualify as being anything of significance in the daily walk of the Mormon’s life.
Gospel Principles pg. 37; “He is a spirit that has the form and likeness of a man. He can be in only one place at a time, but his influence can be everywhere at the same time. Compare the Holy Ghost to the sun. There is just one sun, but its light and warmth are felt by everyone on earth.”
Jesus told us in John 14 that He would send the Comforter to us so we wouldn’t be left comfortless, which literally means to be orphaned. There are many other passages throughout the Bible that teaches a different Holy Spirit than that of the Mormon Holy Ghost. Here are just a few of those verses:
Deut. 6:6-9; Isaiah 9:6; Jer. 31:31; Rom. 8:15, 26-7; John 14:23-6; Acts 1;8; 1 John 3:19; and 1 John 5:7.
Everyone’s older brother. Mormons always call Jesus by His title of Christ and never refer to Him by His given name of Jesus.
MIA (Mutual in Action)
Young women’s youth group.
Prayer for a Mormon is an obligatory work during the day to give God thanks and to seek direction. It’s not intended to strengthen the relationship between the believer and God. When the Mormon asks God for direction on something they believe God will make their heart burn with a warm feeling which is a sign the thing asked for is good. D&C 9:7-9.
Mormons will also tell you to pray about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon citing Moroni 10:3-5.
Additionally, prayer is only spoken using King James English from the 1600’s. Use only “thee”, “thou”, etc. They only pray with their arms folded.
Primary= church for people ages 2 – 12
Relief Society = Women’s Ministry
Sacrament = Communion
Salvation = celestial kingdom to become a polygamous god
Encyclopedia of Mormonism, pg. 1470; “Testimony bearing among members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a person’s verbal expression of what he or she knows to be true concerning the divinity of Jesus Christ, the restoration of the fulness of his gospel in our time, and the blessings that come from living its principles.”
Ward = Congregation
Life After Ministries
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