Monday, January 24, 2011

Islam and Mormonism

Recently in the country where I live in the Middle East, I have noticed some Mormons who are here as missionaries.   Most Muslims in this country have never heard of Mormonism or Joseph Smith.  Thus I have had several chances recently to discuss the fact that they believe in another "final" prophet from God.   My Muslim friends don't like that.  When I tell them more about Mormonism, I ask them if it is from God or from Satan.  They always say it is from Satan.  But when they hear about the similarities between their own religion and Mormonism, it often leaves them scratching their heads! 

For those of you who aren't familiar with Abu Daoud's blog, Islam and Christianity, I heartily recommend it as a wealth of knowledge.  I found this article there.  And I re-post it below for your perusal...
Islam and Mormonism
by C. Fletcher
In studying world religions, I have noticed several similarities between Mormonism and Islam. Sure, there are significant differences as well (Monotheistic Islam vs. Polytheistic Mormonism for example), and I would not suggest that they are theologically compatible, but the foundings of both religions are surprisingly similar and worth noting.

Here are 12 of the parallels that have been noted (this list is by no means exhaustive):

1. Both claimed that the original meaning of the teachings of Jesus and those who preceded him had either been forgotten or corrupted.
2. Both prophets are reported to have come from humble beginnings with no formal education and were barely literate.
3. Holy Books: Both prophets wrote a new holy book that was apparently inspired by God, and both claimed that their holy book was the most correct and perfect book on earth. Also, they both claimed that their holy books were based upon a record stored in heaven. Both religions claim that their Holy Books have been preserved and are accurate to what was originally recorded by their prophets.
4. Both prophets claimed to have had visions and to have been visited by angels. For Muhammad it was the angel Gabriel, and for Smith it was the angel Moroni. Both visions revealed many new teachings that contradict the Bible.
5. Both believed that no true religion existed on Earth and they were there to restore God’s truth. Islam claims that Adam and Abraham were truly Muslim and that it is restoring 'the true faith of Abraham'. Mormons claim to have restored 'the true faith/church' that was on the earth during and after the time of Jesus, before the supposed "Great Apostasy".
6. Both prophets were practicing polygamists and advocated polygamy (and condemn polyandry) by supposed revelation from God. Additionally, both men married very young girls.

7. Both profited greatly (financially) from their followers by commanding their money.
8. Both men received “convenient” revelations just in time to satisfy their own desires. For example, Muhammad got a revelation that he himself was allowed to marry 8 wives instead of the usual 4 in Islam, and Joseph Smith got a similar revelation (revealed in Doctrine and Covenants section 132) that he was not only permitted to marry multiple wives, but that it was required for salvation and was an everlasting covenant. This revelation came just as he was going to be “caught” with other women he was having affairs with. Additionally, D&C 132 specifically mentions his wife Emma by name and warns her to death should she be unfaithful to Joseph. (Most scholars [even Mormon scholars like Todd Compton] estimate that Joseph Smith had 33 wives before he was killed. Surely he would have had many more had he lived longer.
9. Both left no clear successor for their faith - leading both religions to splinter after the death of their prophets. In each religion there are splinter groups with each group claiming to be the true successor or true continuation of the faith.
10. Both Islam and Mormonism have those who follow the "original doctrine" of the founding leaders and like these founding leaders, are violent polygamists, and have revelations justifying their evil actions.
11. Both prophets and religions deny the doctrine of the Holy Trinity and the eternality of Jesus, as well as Jesus being God in the flesh
12. Both men were murderers. For Muhammad, there is no question about this. Most Mormons teach and believe that Joseph Smith was martyred, but this is not true. It is historically verifiable that he shot and killed two men during the shootout that ultimately took his life. The Mormon view is that he was “led like a lamb to slaughter” and was killed as a martyr. Not so. It was a gunfight, that he and his brother lost, but not before taking some lives of their own.

Here are some scriptures to reflect on in light of the points above. While these scriptures may come across as abrasive... remember, it's not my view or anyone else's, this is the Bible.

Galatians 1:6-9 6"I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7 which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you, and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed."

2 Cor 11: 12-15 12And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. 13For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. 14And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.
HT: Islam and Christianity


Seth R. said...

Joseph Smith didn't kill anyone. His jail cell was being rushed by a mob of men with rifles intent on killing him and his friends. Joseph fired a pepperbox pistol blindly into the hallway to discourage them men from entering. He POSSIBLY wounded one or two of them, but no one died from it.

This is a ridiculous argument.

Over 100 armed men attack you with rifles threatening to kill you and your friends and you fire once in self-defense...

And you call that a "gunfight?"

Are you freaking serious?

And you call him a "murderer" for that?

That's a pretty.... unique viewpoint you have there.

Abdul Asad عبد الأسد said...

John Taylor testified that Joseph Smith,

"snapped the pistol six successive times; only three of the barrels, however, were discharged. I afterwards understood that two or three were wounded by these discharges, two of whom, I am informed, died."

The 3rd President of the LDS said this, not me!

Abdul Asad عبد الأسد said...

Here is the link to Taylor's testimony...

It's hard to alter these words. Taylor eventually became the 3rd president of the Mormon church, so either the church had a liar as president, or Joseph Smith killed two people.

Seth R. said...

Early Church publications reported deaths. This is where John Taylor got his information - and he is clearly wrong in this instance.

Joseph's actions were clearly self-defense and defense of others under the common law. However, this point is moot since the attackers who were hit were not killed (as was first reported in some Church publications) but only wounded. They were alive and well at the trial held for mob leaders, and were identified by witnesses. Their good health allowed them to receive gifts because of their role in the assault on Joseph, Hyrum, and the other prisoners.

According to current Apostle Dallin Oaks and Marvin Hill:

"Wills, Voras, and Gallagher were probably named in the indictment because their wounds, which testimony showed were received at the jail, were irrefutable evidence that they had participated in the mob. They undoubtedly recognized their vulnerability and fled the county. A contemporary witness reported these three as saying that they were the first men at the jail, that one of them shot through the door killing Hyrum, that Joseph wounded all three with his pistol, and that Gallaher shot Joseph as he ran to the window.[Hay, "The Mormon Prophet's Tragedy," 675] According to Hay, Wills, whom the Mormon prophet had shot in the arm, was an Irishman who had joined the mob from “his congenital love of a brawl.”[Statement of Jeremiah Willey, August 13, 1844, Brigham Young correspondence, Church Archives.] Gallaher was a young man from Mississippi who was shot in the face.[Hay, "The Mormon Prophet's Tragedy," 669, 675. Another source says Wills was a former Mormon elder who had left the Church. Davis, An Authentic Account, 24.] Hay described Voras (Voorhees) as a “half-grown hobbledehoy from Bear Creek” whom Joseph shot in the shoulder. The citizens of Green Plains were said to have given Gallaher and Voras new suits of clothes for their parts in the killing.[Statement of Jeremiah Willey, August 13, 1844]."

Dallin Oaks, Marvin Hill, Carthage Conspiracy: The trial of the Accused Assassins of Joseph Smith, p. 52.

So your data is inaccurate here. It relies on a clearly outdated account of the events.

Secondly, your charge of "murder" is still utterly ridiculous.

Tell me, Abdul - I walk into my daughter's elementary school and see a crazed gunman about to fire a shotgun into a crowd of terrified children and I pull a gun and shoot him.

Did I just commit murder? Am I a "murderer?" Would I be convicted of such by any court in the civilized world?

Just step back a second and listen to how utterly ridiculous you sound.

Besides, the definition of "martyr" has never required passive non-resistance to death like you are asserting. Webster’s New World Dictionary defines a "martyr" as

“a person who chooses to suffer or die rather than give up his faith or his principles.”

There you have it - and Joseph Smith qualifies under that definition. He fired the gun in defense of his brother and two friends in the room with him.

Even Jesus Christ himself used his own power to allow his Apostles to escape when he was arrested.

Again an utterly ridiculous argument.

Abdul Asad عبد الأسد said...


First off, you should know that I did not call Joseph Smith a "murderer", I simply reposted something about the similarities of Mormonism and Islam from another blog. The author of that post is the one who used the word "murderer", not me. I would agree with you that Joseph Smith was acting in self-defense, but the point is, he still shot a gun at someone. So no, I wouldn't call him a murderer myself, but since I chose to repost that article, I felt the benefits of the author's points outweighed that one disagreement that I may have had with it. Again, the point was to demonstrate the amazing similarities between Islam (Muhammad) and Mormonism (Joseph Smith). I apologize if the use of the term "murderer" to describe Smith offends you, because, as I said, I would say it was self defense also. So we agree about that. Whether two men died or not might be up for dispute. But even that doesn't matter so much to me, as I respectfully consider Smith to be a false prophet, just like one of those Jesus predicted in the New Testament.

But then, this isn't the place to get into "back and forths" about our differences (there isn't enough space!). I only ask that you do the very thing that all Mormons ask others to do, just pray openly to God and ask him if Jesus Christ is God's final and ultimate manifestation of himself to mankind, which makes all comers after Jesus to be false prophets. If you can do that, along with reading the New Testament for yourself (I read the Book of Mormon several times, as well as DC and POGP and still made my choice for the Jesus of the Bible), that would be great. Then decide for yourself. Perhaps try the New International Version, it's the easiest to read.

Grace to you brother. And once again, I apologize if the wording of that post offended you.

Abdul Asad عبد الأسد said...


You might also find this blog helpful if you are truly seeking answers...


p.s. As to your statement that John Taylor got his idea from early church reports, he was an eyewitness!

Seth R. said...

OK, it seems I misunderstood where you are coming from. Sorry for getting too heated with you.

John Taylor was indeed in the cell with Joseph. But he was wounded with four musket balls early in the incident and was shoved underneath the bed by his friend Willard Richards. He was in no position to see or notice what happened to the men in the hall that Joseph fired at.

Certainly, no one in that room went out into that deadly hallway to check the casualty count.