The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the official name for Mormonism. Their television commercials are very appealing and family oriented, but Mormonism cannot be considered a Christian denomination.
The Latter Day Saints deny the scriptural doctrine of the Trinity. They teach that there are many gods and human beings can become gods themselves through a kind of spiritual evolution. Mormons are taught “As man now is, God once was; as God now is, man may become.” Mormonism denies the scriptural teaching of justification by grace alone through faith in Jesus and teaches a system of salvation by works. They teach that people are born inherently good and have the freedom to make the right decisions. They believe that people progress by making wise use of this freedom.
Mormons practice “baptism for the dead.” They believe that the spirits of the dead can accept Mormonism in the spirit world, but since they don’t have a body they cannot be baptized. Since Mormon baptism is essential for spiritual progression, Mormons can be baptized in the place of a departed relative. This is the reason why Mormonism places such an emphasis on genealogy.
Mormons teach that there are three spirit kingdoms to which the spirits of the dead can go. The Celestial Kingdom is the highest kingdom and is reserved for faithful Mormons and those who die before the age of eight. The Terrestrial Kingdom is for moral non-Mormons and less “valiant” Mormons. The Telestial Kingdom is the place where most people will go after suffering for their sins. This is the kingdom of the least glory.
The Mormons accept the following as scripture: The Bible, The Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price. They also consider the words of their living prophets to be scripture.
For more information about Mormonism and witnessing to Mormons visit www.tilm.org.