The Mormon church was founded in 1830 by Joseph Smith and his followers. It was claimed
for the church that it was a restoration of primitive Christianity as it had been lived in
the time of the Apostles with the addition of more recent revelation.
Today, there are two major groups1
claiming allegiance to Joseph Smith. The differences between the two groups are summarized
|Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
|Reorganized Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Josephites)2
|Followed Brigham Young on the death of Joseph Smith.
|Claimed that succession must be through the seed of Joseph
Smith, therefore rejected Brigham Young and chose the son of Smith as head of the church.
|Headquarters at Salt Lake City, Utah.
|Headquarters at Independence, Missouri.
|Believe in the revelations regarding polygamy (but do not
officially practice it).
|Reject polygamy and the Brighamite claim that Joseph Smith
wrote "Revelation on Celestial Marriage".
|Reject the official use of Joseph
Smith's Inspired Translation3
of the Bible.
|The Inspired Translation3 is published and officially
|Accept the Adam-god doctrine as taught in Doctrine and
|Reject the Adam-god doctrine but retain the belief in gods
with flesh and bones. Reject Section 132 of Doctrine and Covenants.
|Practice secret rites in temples.4
|No secret temple rites. In the
Kirtland Temple all meetings are open to the public.5
- There are other factions, such as, "The Church of Christ" (Temple Lot or
Hedrickite) with headquarters at Independence, Missouri. This group, though small, is
vigorous and claims to be the only true church by reason of its possession of the temple
lot designated by Joseph Smith in 1831 as the site of "the Temple of Zion". Return
- In Ontario, Canada, the Reorganized Church has membership in
areas of Christadelphian ecclesias at Grand Valley and Manitoulin Island. A special
responsibility is felt by Latter-day Saints to preach to their "Lamanite"
brethren, the American Indian, purportedly apostate descendants of Hebrews to whom Jesus
supposedly preached on this continent. Return
- Parallel translations of Gen. 2:5 illustrate the way in which
the "Inspired" Version distorts Biblical passages:
|King James Version
|"For I the Lord God created all things of which I have spoken, spiritually,
before they were naturally upon the face of the earth . . . in heaven I created them
. . . "
|"And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every
herb of the field before it grew: for the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the
earth, and there was not a man to till the ground."
It is apparent that the Inspired Version incorporates into the text the Mormon
doctrine of pre-human spirits. Similarly, the life of Enoch in the Bible is expanded in
the Inspired Version to give support to the communistic "Order of Enoch"
attempted, but later abandoned, by Smith and Rigdon. (Rigdon was an ex-Cambellite of the
Disciples of Christ and convert to Mormonism.) The account of Melchizedek and the Epistle
to the Hebrews are likewise imaginatively enlarged to provide a "scriptural"
basis for the Mormon priesthood. Return
- The only Mormon temple in Canada is at Cardston, Alberta.
Cardston was founded by Charles Ora Card, who had three wives and trekked into Canada in
1886 (pursued by U.S. marshals) four years before plural marriage was ostensibly
abandoned. MacLean's Magazine, (Jan. 15, 1951) Return
- In the courts, the Reorganized Church was awarded title to the
Kirtland Temple as the legal successor to the original church founded by Joseph Smith. Return