It is always interesting to hear the chorus of voices raised to claim that Mormons are NOT Christians. Last weekend I spent a good deal of time listening to LDS General Conference. Many of the speakers marshaled reason and faith to dispel this ludicrous claim, but several others seemed to go out of their way to support it.
I was dismayed that several of the speakers found it necessary to disparage the Nicene Creed. They talked very authoritatively about its “misbegotten” origin and its “errors”, but I was forced to wonder if the good brethren, who were so busy attacking this foundational doctrine of Christianity, had ever read it. That Mormons would try so hard to be accepted as “Christian” and then spend a good deal of the conference insisting that all other Christians are wrong in their understanding of God seems to be painfully self defeating.
Here is the Nicene Creed. Repeated readings have failed to reveal anything that contradicts Mormon Doctrine. If anyone can see a contradiction to the LDS articles of faith – which seem to be patterned to some extent after the creed – or to Scripture, please explain it to me.
The Nicene Creed
We believe in one God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, Very God of Very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father by whom all things were made; who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary, and was made man, and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate. He suffered and was buried, and the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures, and ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father. And he shall come again with glory to judge both the quick and the dead, whose kingdom shall have no end.
And we believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of Life, who proceedeth from the Father (and the Son*) who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, who spoke by the prophets. And we believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins. And we look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Change proposed 6/1999
In my salad days – The LDS Church used to present a parody of a sectarian minister teaching something about a God without body parts or passions, whose circumference is no were and center was everywhere, who was so large He filled the universe and yet was so small he can dwell in one’s heart. I have never found a religion which teaches that version of God, in fact, that Mormons no longer present the parody seems to indicate that Church leaders have also abandoned the notion.
As food for thought, in comparing Mormon beliefs to those outlined in the Nicene Creed consider these Scriptures from the “Standard Works”.
1st Nephi 13:41 [On God and Jesus being ONE God]
41 And they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb; and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed, as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb; wherefore they both shall be established in one; for there is one God and one Shepherd over all the earth.
From Mosiah 15: 1 – 5
AND now Abinadi said unto them; I would that ye should understand that God himself shall come down among the children of men, and shall redeem his people.
2 And because he dwelleth in flesh he shall be called the Son of God, and having subjected the flesh to the will of the Father, being the Father and the SON—
3 The Father, because he was conceived by the power of God; and the Son, because of the flesh; thus becoming the Father and Son—
4 And they are one God, yea, the very Eternal Father of heaven and of earth.
5 And thus the flesh becoming subject to the Spirit, or the Son to the Father, being one God, suffereth temptation, and yieldeth not to the temptation, but suffereth himself to be mocked, and scourged, and cast out, and disowned by his people.
2nd Nephi 31: 21
21 And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen
3rd Nephi 9: 15
15 Behold, I am Jesus Christ the Son of God, I created the heavens and the earth, and all things that in them are. I was with the Father from the beginning. I am in the Father, and the Father in me; and in me hath the Father glorified his name.
D&C 130: 22 [On the nature of the three manifestations of God – and His ability to live in our heart]
22 The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us.
Please also consider that the most sacred of all prayers and oaths– the ones that have truly saving power are offered in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. In this name of God were all Mormons baptized and promised all their eternal blessings.
It seems to me that the Mormon Church could make more headway in its effort to be an accepted Christian faith by carefully considering the Nicene Creed and pointing out to all who will listen that it is the very doctrine of the LDS faith. What stronger bona fideies could the Church display?