What Makes Mormonism Different From Christianity?

Have you ever wondered what sets Mormonism apart from traditional Christianity? With its distinct beliefs and practices, Mormonism has been the subject of curiosity and debate. In this article, we will explore the key differences between these two faiths, shedding light on some fascinating aspects of Mormonism that make it unique within the realm of Christianity. Whether you’re seeking to deepen your understanding or simply satisfy your curiosity, join us on this illuminating journey as we explore what distinguishes Mormonism from Christianity.

Beliefs about God

Mormon belief in the Godhead

In Mormonism, the Godhead refers to the belief in three distinct divine beings: God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. Mormons believe that these three beings are separate entities, but are unified in purpose and work together to bring about the salvation and exaltation of humanity. Mormons view the Godhead as a council of divine beings, each with their own roles and responsibilities.

Christian belief in the Trinity

In Christian belief, the Trinity refers to the belief in one God who exists in three distinct but co-equal persons: God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit. Unlike Mormonism, Christianity teaches that these three persons are not separate entities, but are rather different manifestations or aspects of the one true God. Christians believe that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are eternally united and have always existed as one divine being.


Book of Mormon as additional scripture

One of the key differences between Mormonism and traditional Christianity is the belief in additional scripture. Mormons consider the Book of Mormon to be a sacred text that was translated by their founder, Joseph Smith, from golden plates that were said to have been buried by an ancient prophet named Moroni. Mormons believe that the Book of Mormon is an additional witness of Jesus Christ and contains the fullness of the gospel.

Bible as sole authoritative scripture for Christians

In contrast, traditional Christians believe that the Bible is the sole authoritative scripture. Christians view the Bible as God’s inspired and infallible word, containing the teachings and historical accounts that are essential for understanding God’s plan of salvation. Unlike Mormons, Christians generally do not consider any additional texts, such as the Book of Mormon, to be scripture.

Jesus Christ

Mormon belief in Jesus as one of many divine beings

Mormons believe that Jesus Christ is the literal Son of God and the Savior of humanity. In Mormon theology, Jesus is seen as one of many divine beings who progressed to godhood and was chosen to fulfill the role of Savior and Redeemer. Mormons view Jesus as a distinct individual who is separate from God the Father.

Christian belief in Jesus as the only divine Son of God

Traditional Christians, on the other hand, believe that Jesus Christ is the only divine Son of God. Christians believe that Jesus is fully God and fully human, without any progression to godhood. According to Christian doctrine, Jesus is the second person of the Trinity, co-equal with God the Father and the Holy Spirit. Christians emphasize that Jesus is the unique and exclusive means of salvation for humanity.


Mormon belief in achieving salvation through faith, good works, and ordinances

Mormonism teaches that salvation is achieved through a combination of faith, good works, and participation in sacred ordinances. Mormons believe that faith in Jesus Christ is necessary for salvation, but it is not sufficient on its own. Good works, such as obeying commandments and serving others, are also believed to be essential for earning salvation. Additionally, Mormons believe in the importance of participating in specific ordinances, such as baptism and temple rituals, to receive the full blessings of salvation.

Christian belief in salvation through faith in Jesus alone

In contrast, traditional Christian belief emphasizes salvation through faith in Jesus alone. Christians believe that salvation is a gift from God that cannot be earned through good works or religious rituals. According to Christian doctrine, faith in Jesus Christ is the only requirement for salvation. Christians believe that Jesus’ death and resurrection have provided complete forgiveness of sins and eternal life for all who place their trust in Him.

Apostolic Authority

Mormon belief in modern-day apostles and prophets

Mormons believe in the continuation of apostolic authority in the modern era. They believe that just as Jesus Christ called apostles and prophets in ancient times, He continues to call and inspire individuals to hold these roles in the present day. Mormons sustain their prophet and apostles as the highest authority on earth, receiving continuing revelation from God to guide and direct the Church.

Christian belief in the authority of the original apostles

Traditional Christians generally believe that the authority of the original apostles, as recorded in the New Testament, is sufficient for the Church. They do not believe in the need for modern-day apostles or prophets. Christians view the Bible as the ultimate authority for their faith and practice, and believe that the teachings of the apostles contained therein are valid and applicable for all times.

Nature of the Church

Mormon belief in a restored and organized church

Mormons believe that their church, officially known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is the restored and organized church established by Jesus Christ in the latter days. They believe that the true priesthood authority and organization of the early Christian Church was lost over time and was restored through Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism. Mormons see their church as the only true and complete representation of Christ’s original Church.

Christian belief in the universal body of believers

Traditional Christians view the Church as the universal body of believers in Jesus Christ, regardless of denominational affiliation. They do not attribute exclusive truth or authority to any specific organization or denomination, but rather emphasize the spiritual unity of all believers. Christians believe that the Church is composed of all those who have placed their faith in Jesus as their Savior and Lord, regardless of visible earthly structures.

The Afterlife

Mormon belief in a tiered system of heaven, including celestial marriage and potential godhood

Mormonism teaches a belief in a tiered system of heaven. Mormons believe that after death, individuals will be assigned to one of three degrees of glory: celestial, terrestrial, or telestial. The highest degree, celestial, is reserved for those who have fully embraced the gospel and lived according to its principles. Mormons also believe in the possibility of eternal progression and that individuals can achieve godhood, with the potential to create and rule over their own worlds.

Christian belief in a singular heaven and eternal life with God

Traditional Christians believe in a singular heaven where believers will spend eternity in the presence of God. Christians view heaven as a place of eternal bliss and communion with God, where believers will experience the fullness of joy and fulfillment. Unlike Mormons, Christians generally do not believe in the concept of eternal progression or the potential for humans to become gods.


Mormon belief in various ordinances, such as baptism for the dead

Mormonism places a great emphasis on performing various ordinances or sacraments. One distinctive practice is baptism for the dead, which Mormons believe allows individuals who have passed away without having had the opportunity to receive the gospel to be baptized by proxy. Mormons also practice other ordinances, such as confirmation, the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, and a variety of temple rituals.

Christian belief in sacraments like baptism and communion

Traditional Christians also practice sacraments, but the specific practices and beliefs surrounding them may vary among different Christian denominations. Baptism, which symbolizes cleansing, rebirth, and initiation into the Christian community, is widely practiced. Communion, also known as the Eucharist or the Lord’s Supper, is another common sacrament. Christians believe that these sacraments are means of receiving God’s grace, but the theological significance and understanding may differ across denominations.

Temples and Rituals

Mormon belief in temple ordinances and rituals

Mormons view temples as sacred and special buildings where they perform ordinances and rituals that are considered essential for salvation and exaltation. These rituals include ceremonies related to baptism, eternal marriage, and sealing families together for eternity. Mormons believe that these temple ordinances not only bless individuals in this life but also have eternal implications for the afterlife.

Christian belief in the symbolic nature of baptism and communion

Traditional Christians see baptism and communion as symbolic acts rather than as rituals that directly confer saving grace. Christian baptism symbolizes a believer’s identification with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Similarly, communion symbolizes the believer’s remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross and participation in the spiritual nourishment and unity of the body of Christ. Christians generally do not believe in the necessity of specific rituals or ordinances for salvation.

Gender and Priesthood

Mormon belief in a male-only priesthood

Mormonism maintains a belief in a male-only priesthood, where only men are ordained to hold priesthood offices and exercise priesthood authority. Men in the Mormon Church can hold various priesthood offices, such as deacon, teacher, priest, and bishop. This belief is based on the understanding that Jesus Christ chose only male apostles during His ministry and that this pattern continues in the present day.

Christian belief in the priesthood being open to both men and women

Traditional Christians generally believe in the equality of men and women in the Church and do not restrict priesthood offices or authority based on gender. While some Christian denominations still reserve certain roles or positions for men only, many denominations allow women to serve as clergy, pastors, or hold leadership roles within the Church. Christianity emphasizes the shared priesthood of all believers, regardless of gender, through their union with Christ.