Mormon Beliefs Archive

Why I Prepare for Droughts, Zombie Bees and Polar Vortices

Why I Prepare for Droughts, Zombie Bees and Polar Vortices

When His disciples asked how they would recognize the times in which the Savior would return to the earth again, a part of Jesus’ answer was, “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:7-8). God Has Always Had a Plan for His Children Read the rest of this entry »  Read More →

Mormonism and the Mark of Cain

Mormonism and the Mark of Cain

Recently a lot of stories have circulated that Mormons believe that when God gave Cain dark skin, it was a curse. This is not canonized doctrine, although you can find a few who believe it or did in the past. Of course, you can find people in any group that believe something that is not true. Mormonism accepts both the Bible and the Book of Mormon as scripture. Mormon is a nickname sometimes used to describe the people of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the correct name for their church. The Bible and the mark of Cain The Bible is very clear about the purpose of the mark of Cain. Cain killed his brother because he was jealous that God had accepted Abel’s offering but not his own, which had been offered incorrectly. Then, when God asked him about it, he lied. God mentions a curse for the first time in the story: “And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; When... Read the rest of this entry »

A Mormon Apostle Speaks at Harvard

A Mormon Apostle Speaks at Harvard

The Mormon Apostle Jeffrey R. Holland spoke on March 20, 2012 to students of the Harvard University Law School as part of the school’s annual “Mormonism 101″ series. Elder Holland (Mormon leaders are traditionally addressed by the title, “Elder”) explained about the history and beliefs of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are often called “Mormons.” He then engaged in a question-and-answer session with members of the audience. Elder Holland’s remarks helped shed some light on the Church, which has received a lot of media attention lately due to the presidential candidacy of Mitt Romney. Elder Holland began his remarks by congratulating the students on their openness to discussions of religious belief. ”In the western world religion has historically been the basis of civil society as we have known it, and if I am not mistaken, men and women of the law are committed to the... Read the rest of this entry »

One More River to Cross: Mormon Beliefs About Death and Eternal Families

One More River to Cross: Mormon Beliefs About Death and Eternal Families

William Tapscott Gillman was named after the ship upon which he was born, the S.S. William Tapscott. Alice Wickham, William’s mother, was crossing the Atlantic from land to America as a newly baptized Mormon. It was 1860. Over seven hundred new members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes called the “Mormon Church” by the media) were crowded into tiny berths on the refitted cargo ship. They were travelling to join the body of the Church in Zion, which is what they called the newly settled Utah territory where the rest of the Saints had gone to escape religious persecution. The crossing was long, thirty-five days, and the passengers were plagued by seasickness, measles, and smallpox. Four babies were born onboard, and five weddings were performed. Alice, who was unmarried, arrived in the Salt Lake with her new baby in the fall of that year, after months of travel by ship, steamboat, rail, and wagon. She married... Read the rest of this entry »

Where Did Satan Come From?

Where Did Satan Come From?

In the Book of John, we learn, “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (See John 1:3.) It is clear, then, that anything that exists was created by God, and so God made Satan. However, he wasn’t Satan at his creation and he was not created evil. The prophet Isaiah helps us to understand what turned Lucifer into Satan and demonstrates that he is not the being God created him to be: “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” (See Isaiah 14:12.) In other words, Satan, as created, was not evil. God does not create anything that is evil. The creation accounts in Genesis consistently remind us that everything God creates is good. How did Satan go from being a good creation of God to being the source of evil? Read the rest of this entry »  Read More →

Black Mormon

Black Mormon

There have been black Mormons since the 1830s. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the true name of the church commonly called the Mormon Church) accepted black people as members and did not segregate their congregations. They were officially opposed to slavery, which upset Missouri when they lived there. The newspapers published complaints that Mormons had a plan to convert and bring to Missouri free blacks at a time Missouri was trying to enter the United States as a slave state. Missouri, which beat free blacks entering the state, saw the Mormon plan to increase the black population as justification for increased persecution of Mormons. There have been black Mormons since the earliest days of Mormonism. The Mormon Church was organized in 1830 and the first black Mormon was baptized in 1832. His name was Elijah Abel. He would also receive the priesthood and become a seventy, a high-ranking church leader. Abel is believed to have escaped... Read the rest of this entry »

The Second Coming of Jesus Christ

The Second Coming of Jesus Christ

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who are often called Mormons by others, believe that Jesus Christ will return to earth one day. Mormons focus on what we know about that time and leave the rest to God. Jesus Christ will return to Earth. “Four matters are indisputable to Latter-day Saints: (1) The Savior will return to the earth in power and great glory to reign personally during a millennium of righteousness and peace. (2) At the time of His coming there will be a destruction of the wicked and a resurrection of the righteous. (3) No one knows the time of His coming, but (4) the faithful are taught to study the signs of it and to be prepared for it. (See Dallin H. Oaks, “Preparation for the Second Coming,” Liahona, May 2004, 7–10) Let’s look first at the first and second principles Elder Oaks mentioned. Mormons believe in the Second Coming. We can over cover what will happen briefly in this article. For a more detailed... Read the rest of this entry »

The Book of Mormon Musical

The Book of Mormon Musical

The media has spent a lot of time on the Book of Mormon Musical, a Broadway production people either love or hate. The reviews have often demonstrated the biases of the reviewers. One rejoiced that the musical showed that religion believes in a lot of silly things (not just Mormonism, but all religion). Another suggested the message was that blind faith is a sin, with his unspoken message being that religious faith is always blind. A Jewish writer argued that Jewish people, with their great knowledge of the dangers of religious persecution, should speak out loudly against the musical. Other writers have noted that the musical attacks all religions, even though it focused on only one. Some have noticed it is an inherently vicious portrayal of Africans, mocking their poverty and suffering. The official statement of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was a single sentence: “The production may attempt to entertain audiences for an evening,... Read the rest of this entry »

Why is Life So Hard?

Why is Life So Hard?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are sometimes called Mormons, recently held its semi-annual General Conference. In this conference, Mormon leaders instruct members and other listeners in ways to better live Christ’s teachings. In the April 2011 General Conference, Paul V. Johnson answered the question, “Why is life so hard?” He taught that trials often come to us because Jesus loves us. It might not seem, at first glance to be much of a gift, but when we understand why we came to earth, the reasoning behind this becomes clear. Mormon beliefs teach that God created our spirits. As spirits—meaning we had no body—we lived with God, getting to know Him and becoming the people we are today. Eventually, of course, every child needs to leave home and so God prepared the earth for us. When we came to earth we would take with us our own personalities but we would forget who we had been and where we had come from. We’d... Read the rest of this entry »

What are the Core Doctrines of Mormonism

What are the Core Doctrines of Mormonism

When people talk about Mormonism, they often focus in on small things that are not important, aren’t taught currently, aren’t even practiced today. By doing so they miss an opportunity to understand Mormonism as it lives today and even as it was originally taught. The atonement of Jesus Christ is central to Mormonism. To understand Mormonism, you must focus on core doctrines, those things which are canonized as official doctrine and taught consistently. While church practices sometimes change, truth does not. There are a few guidelines that can help you evaluate whether or not a teaching is a core doctrine—or even a true doctrine of Mormonism. First, it is important to understand that every word spoken by a prophet is not necessarily doctrine, particularly in the earliest days of the church. In the beginnings, the church was run much more informally. People talked among themselves and sometimes others took notes and published those conversations... Read the rest of this entry »