Mormons have the Book of Mormon but since they consider themselves Christians, do they read the bible too?
Yes, Mormons do read the Bible. They consider both the Old Testament and the New Testament to be the word of God through his prophets. They believe that the King James version of the Bible is the authentic version.
Combined with the Book of Mormon, that’s a lot of bible study! So what do Mormons believe about the Bible, and why is their book necessary?
The Bible According To Mormons
The Bible is considered holy scripture to the Mormons. They study it with as much faith as the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is a supplement to the Bible, not a replacement for it.
But they don’t think the Bible has survived completely intact from the time of the old prophets. On the contrary, the different variations of the Bible indicate to them that the word of God has been corrupted through error.
As the centuries passed, mortal human beings translated, transcribed, and edited the Bible, diluting the potency of the scripture.
Today, there are dozens of different versions of the Bible, which indicates to the Mormons that they are inaccurate depictions of the scripture. Only the King James version is accepted as legitimately true.
Unlike other Christian religions, they don’t believe the Bible to be a whole and complete account of God’s revelations to mankind.
They believe that some scripture has been lost to time, such as the book of Enoch. They believe that they have access to such scripture through their texts.
In addition to the Bible, the Mormons have what they call Latter-Day Scripture. This includes the Book of Mormon, the Pearl of Great Price, and the Doctrine and Covenants.
The Book of Mormon
The Book of Mormon is the longest of the three additional Latter-Day Scriptures. It tells the story of the ancient Americas.
The Nephites and the Lamanites were two societies that descended from Lehi, who came to the Americas from Jerusalem. Eventually, the wicked Lamanites who had forgotten their past destroyed the righteous Nephites.
Before the Nephites were destroyed, Jesus visited them and the climax of the book is when he teaches them what they need to do to be saved.
The belief is that Jesus visited them before his ascendancy, after his resurrection.
The Pearl of Great Price
The Pearl of Great Price is a collection of several different things: the Book of Moses, the Book of Abraham, Joseph Smith’s history, and the Articles of Faith.
The Book of Moses describes aspects of Moses’ life that were not revealed in the book of Genesis. It also gives alternative versions of some significant events in the Bible, such as the story of Adam and Eve and the story of Enoch.
The Book of Abraham is an expansion of the biblical story of Abraham. It includes teachings from Jesus to Abraham about the nature of the world and describes the priesthood.
The Pearl of Great Price also includes some corrections that Joseph Smith made to the biblical Book of Matthew, a history of how Joseph Smith was given the gold plates the Book of Mormon was translated from, and the Articles of Faith (Joesph Smith’s statements of belief).
Doctrine and Covenants
The Doctrine and Covenants is the only book of scripture in the Mormon canon that is not describing ancient times.
Instead, they are revelations given to Joseph Smith by God that describe how families should be structured, how the church should function, and how people are to achieve salvation.
They are contemporary to the 19th century and have an unusual tone for being Christian scripture because of it.
One of the more well-known parts of the Doctrine and Covenants is the Word of Wisdom, which describes what Mormons can and can’t eat.
It’s the reason why Mormons don’t use tobacco or drugs and don’t drink alcohol, coffee, or tea.
Mormons do read the Bible. They read the King James version and believe it is the only accurate version.
They also have three other books they’ve added to the canon: the Book of Mormon, the Pearl of Great Price, and the Doctrine and Covenants.