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"And also those to whom these commandments were given, might have power to lay the foundation of this church, and to bring it forth out of obscurity and out of darkness, the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth..."
- Doctrine and Covenants, section 1, verse 30
Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr. (1805 - 1844):
“My object in going to inquire of the Lord was to know which of all the sects was right, that I might know which to join. No sooner, therefore, did I get possession of myself, so as to be able to speak, than I asked the Personages who stood above me in the light, which of all the sects was right (for at this time it had never entered into my heart that all were wrong)—and which I should join.”
“I was answered that I must join none of them, for they were all wrong; and the Personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in His sight; that those professors were all corrupt; that: ‘they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof.'”
“He again forbade me to join with any of them; and many other things did he say unto me, which I cannot write at this time. When I came to myself again, I found myself lying on my back, looking up into heaven. When the light had departed, I had no strength; but soon recovering in some degree, I went home. And as I leaned up to the fireplace, mother inquired what the matter was. I replied, ‘Never mind, all is well—I am well enough off.' I then said to my mother, ‘I have learned for myself that Presbyterianism is not true.' It seems as though the adversary was aware, at a very early period of my life, that I was destined to prove a disturber and an annoyer of his kingdom; else why should the powers of darkness combine against me?
- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., Joseph Smith–History, v. 1, pp. 8–26
"What is it that inspires professors of Christianity generally with a hope of salvation? It is that smooth, sophisticated influence of the devil, by which he deceives the whole world"
- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 270
"...all the priests who adhere to the sectarian religions of the day with all their followers, without one exception, receive their portion with the devil and his angels."
- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr. , The Elders Journal, v. 1, no. 4, p. 60
“Nothing less than a complete apostasy from the Christian religion would warrant the establishment of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”
- Prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., History of the Church, v. 1, p. xl
Prophet Brigham Young (1801 - 1877):
“He did send His angel to this same obscure person, Joseph Smith jun., who afterwards became a Prophet, Seer, and Revelator, and informed him that he should not join any of the religious sects of the day, for they were all wrong; that they were following the precepts of men instead of the Lord Jesus; that He had a work for him to perform, inasmuch as he should prove faithful before Him.”
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 2, p. 171
"Brother Taylor has just said that the religions of the day were hatched in hell. The eggs were laid in hell, hatched on its borders, and then kicked on to the earth."
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 6, p. 176
"When the light came to me I saw that all the so-called Christian world was groveling in darkness."
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 5, p. 73
"With a regard to true theology, a more ignorant people never lived than the present so-called Christian world."
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 8, p. 199
"The Christian world, so-called, are heathens as to the knowledge of the salvation of God"
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 8, p. 171
“...the time came when Paganism was engrafted into Christianity, and at last Christianity was converted into Paganism rather than converting the Pagans. And subsequently the Priesthood was taken from among men, this authority was re-called into the heavens, and the world was left without the Priesthood—without the power of God—without the Church and Kingdom of God.”
- Prophet Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, v. 22, p. 44
Apostle Heber C. Kimball (1802 - 1868):
"Christians—those poor, miserable priests brother Brigham was speaking about—some of them are the biggest whoremasters there are on the earth, and at the same time preaching righteousness to the children of men. The poor devils, they could not get up here and preach an oral discourse, to save themselves from hell; they are preaching their fathers' sermons —preaching sermons that were written a hundred years before they were born. ...You may get a Methodist priest to pour water on you, or sprinkle it on you, and baptize you face foremost, or lay you down the other way, and whatever mode you please, and you will be damned with your priest.
- Apostle Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses, v. 5, p. 89
Prophet John Taylor (1808 - 1887):
"Christianity...is a perfect pack of nonsense...the devil could not invent a better engine to spread his work than the Christianity of the nineteenth century."
- Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, v. 6, p. 167
"Where shall we look for the true order or authority of God? It cannot be found in any nation of Christendom."
- Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, v. 10, p. 127
"What! Are Christians ignorant? Yes, as ignorant of the things of God as the brute beast."
- Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, v. 13, p. 225
"What does the Christian world know about God? Nothing... Why so far as the things of God are concerned, they are the veriest fools; they know neither God nor the things of God."
- Prophet John Taylor, Journal of Discourses, v. 13, p. 225
Apostle Orson Pratt (1811 - 1881):
"Both Catholics and Protestants are nothing less than the ‘whore of Babylon' whom the Lord denounces by the mouth of John the Revelator as having corrupted all the earth by their fornications and wickedness. Any person who shall be so corrupt as to receive a holy ordinance of the Gospel from the ministers of any of these apostate churches will be sent down to hell with them, unless they repent."
- Apostle Orson Pratt, The Seer, p. 255
"But as there has been no Christian Church on the earth for a great many centuries past, until the present century, the people have lost sight of the pattern that God has given according to which the Christian Church should be established, and they have denominated a great variety of Christian Churches…But there has been a long apostasy, during which the nations have been cursed with apostate churches in great abundance"
- Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, v. 18, p. 172
“... who, in his right mind, could, for one moment, suppose the Bible in its present form to be a perfect guide? Who knows that even one verse of the whole Bible has escaped pollution so as to convey the same sense now that it did in the original.”
- Apostle Orson Pratt, “The Bible and Tradition, without Further Revelation, an insufficient Guide,” Divine Authenticity of the Book of Mormon – No. 3, December 1, 1850, p. 47; see Abanes, One Nation Under Gods, p. 383-384
“This great apostacy commenced about the close of the first century of the Christian era, and it has been waxing worse and worse from then until now. A short time after the death of the last of the Apostles, the Christian Church, what few of them remained, were persecuted from mountain to mountain, from den to den, from one cave of the earth to another, and from nation to nation until they were entirely exterminated and rooted out of the earth. Well, what was left? An apostate Christianity, a Christianity without revelators, without any voice of God, without any Prophets to unfold the future, without visions, without any communications from the heavens.”
- Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, v. 18, p. 44
“This class of men, calling themselves Christian, uniting with the various forms of the pagan religion, adopting many of their ceremonies and institutions, became very popular, and finally some of the pagans embraced Christianity and were placed, as it were, upon the throne, and what they termed Christianity became very popular indeed. How long has this order of things existed, this dreadful apostacy, this class of people that pronounced themselves Zion, or Christians, without any of the characteristics of Zion? It has existed for some sixteen or seventeen centuries. It has spread itself and grown and gone into the four quarters of the earth. It is the great ecclesiastical power that is spoken of by the revelator John, and called by him the most corrupt and most wicked of all the powers of the earth, under the name of spiritual Babylon, or in other words Babel, which signifies confusion. This great and corrupt power is also represented by John as presenting a golden cup to the nations, full of all manner of filthiness and abominations.”
- Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, v. 14, p. 346
“But as there has been no Christian Church on the earth for a great many centuries past, until the present century, the people have lost sight of the pattern that God has given according to which the Christian Church should be established, and they have denominated a great variety of people Christian Churches, because they profess to be. They say, "We have built chapels unto the name of the Lord; we call our Churches Christian Churches, they are called the Church of Christ, St. John's Church, St. Paul's Church, St. Peter's Church, and after others of the ancient Apostles;" and one who had never studied the pattern which God has given of the Christian Church would almost really believe that they are Christian Churches. But there has been a long apostacy, during which the nations have been cursed with apostate churches in great abundance, and they are represented in the revelations of St. John as a woman sitting upon a scarlet colored beast, having a golden cup in her hand, full of filthiness and abominations, full of the wine of the wrath of her fornication; that in her forehead there was a name written—"Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots." This kind of a church has existed in great abundance, for as John the Revelator says, she was to have her dominion upon many waters, and she was to make all nations drunken with the wine of the wrath of her fornication.”
- Apostle Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses, v. 18, p. 172
“Q. After the Church of Christ fled from earth to heaven, what was left? A. A set of wicked Apostates, murderers, and idolaters, who, after having made war with the saints, and overcome them, and destroyed them out of the earth, were left to follow the wicked imaginations of their own corrupt hearts, and to build up churches by human authority, and to follow after the cunning craftiness of uninspired men; having no Apostle, Prophet, or Revelator to inquire of God for them: and thus, because of wickedness, the Church, and Priesthood, and gifts, and ordinances and blessings of the everlasting Gospel, were taken from the earth, and reserved in heaven until the fulness of times, when it was predicted that they should again be restored among men to continue until the end should come.”
- Apostle Orson Pratt, The Seer, Chapter 16, p. 205
Prophet Wilford Woodruff (1807 - 1898):
"The Gospel of modern Christendom shuts up the Lord, and stops all communication with Him. I want nothing to do with such a Gospel, I would rather prefer the Gospel of the dark ages, so called"
- Prophet Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, v. 2, p. 196
Apostle George Q. Cannon (1827 - 1901):
"After the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized, there were only two churches upon the earth. They were known respectively as the Church of the Lamb of God and Babylon. The various organizations which are called churches throughout Christendom, though differing in their creeds and organizations, have one common origin. They all belong to Babylon."
- Apostle George Q. Cannon, Gospel Truth, p. 324
Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith (1876 - 1972):
"Doctrines were corrupted, authority lost, and a false order of religion took the place of the gospel of Jesus Christ, just as it had been the case in former dispensations, and the people were left in spiritual darkness."
- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, v. 3, p. 266
"For hundreds of years the world was wrapped in a veil of spiritual darkness, until there was not one fundamental truth belonging to the place of salvation ...Joseph Smith declared that in the year 1820 the Lord revealed to him that all the ‘Christian' churches were in error, teaching for commandments the doctrines of men."
- Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, v. 3, p. 282
Apostle Bruce R. McConkie (1915 - 1985):
"...the Book of Mormon remains secure, unchanged and unchangeable, ...But with the Bible it was not and is not so....it was once in the sole and exclusive care and custody of an abominable organization [Christianity], founded by the devil himself, likened prophetically unto a great whore, whose great aim and purpose was to destroy the souls of men in the name of religion. In these hands it ceased to be the book it once was."
- Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, The Joseph Smith Translation, pp. 12, 13
“Believers in the doctrines of modern Christendom will reap damnation to their souls.”
- Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, see pp. 45-46
“... all the millions of apostate Christendom have abased themselves before the mythical throne of a mythical Christ.... in large part the worship of apostate Christendom is performed in ignorance, as much so as was the worship of the Athenians who bowed the Unknown Gods.”
- Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, pp. 269, 374-375
Prophet Ezra Taft Benson (1899 - 1994):
"This is not just another Church. This is not just one of a family of Christian churches. This is the Church and kingdom of God, the only true Church upon the face of the earth..."
- Prophet Ezra Taft Benson, Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p. 164-165
Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley (1910 - ):
“We accept that as a statement which came to him [Joseph Smith's vision in which he was told all other religions were "abominations"], which is printed, of course, and published in his history as a statement. But we go forward with a friendly relationship, with a respect for people everywhere and with an effort to accept them as we meet them and, where opportunity exists, to talk with them and explain to them what we believe.... We don't criticize them for what they believe. We accept the good that comes of that understanding which they have, but we feel we having something to offer beyond what they have.”
- Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley, interview with Richard Ostling, as quoted in Mormon America, by Richard and Joan Ostling, p. 323
“Said he [a Protestant minister] ‘I've been all through this building, this temple which carries on its face the name of Jesus Christ, but nowhere have I seen any representation of the cross, the symbol of Christianity. I have noted your buildings elsewhere and likewise find an absence of the cross. Why is this when you say you believe in Jesus Christ.' I responded:‘ I do not wish to give offense to any of my Christian brethren who use the cross on the steeples of their cathedrals and at the altars of their chapels, who wear it on their vestments, and imprint it on their books and other literature. But for us, the cross is the symbol of the dying Christ, while our message is a declaration of the living Christ.' He then asked: ‘If you do not use the cross, what is the symbol of your religion?' I replied that the lives of our people must become the only meaningful expression of our faith and, in fact, therefore, the symbol of our worship.”
- Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley, General Conference, April 1975
“… we can see the situation in which the world now stands that the eyes of the whole world are blinded, that the chuches have all become corrupted, yea every church upon the face of the earth; that the Gospel of Christ is nowhere preached.”
- Lucy Mack Smith, Joseph Smith Jr.'s mother, letter to Solomon Mack, January 6, 1831, reprinted, in Vogel, Early Mormon Documents, v. 1, p. 216
“God is not at its head, making that church [i.e., Christianity] – following the appearance in it of Satan – no longer the church of God. To say that Satan sits in the place of God in Christianity after the time of the apostles is not to say that all that is in it is Satanic.”
- Kent P. Jackson, “Early Signs of Apostasy,” Ensign, December 1984, p. 9