As you can see, this is what some call the Mormon Bible. We just call it the Book of Mormon (BOM). Mormon was the name of one of the prophets in the Americas when this book was written. It is a spiritually based history of the people of the Americas that was recorded simultaneously with the Bible in the Old World.
Some erroneously call it the “Mormon Bible” because we accept it as scripture, but it does not replace the Bible. Sometimes, we refer to it as the BOM (Book of Mormon) and also some refer to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day-Saints as Mormons because of the Book of Mormon. The BOM is a second witness of the divinity of Jesus Christ. The BOM goes hand in hand with the Bible to establish Christ’s divinity and mission, establishes and testifies of the ministry and divinity of Christ in …the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, (See Deut. 17:6 ; Matt. 18:16; 2 Cor. 13:1; Ether 5:4; Doctrine and Covenants 6:28; D&C 128:3) This double or triple witness fulfills Jewish law and is in fulfillment of prophecy and divine command establishing every word before God. Incidentally, this is also why Mormon missionaries go two by two. Mormons embrace the Jewishness of Christ and do not harbor anti-Semitic beliefs.
I would hope that you will investigate for yourself. Many people will tell you all kinds of things about Mormons. It has been my experience people have all kinds of reasons to misinterpret and misrepresent Mormon theology and teachings. Often, these teachings are taken out of context-sometimes ignorantly, and other times deliberately. They are misinterpreted and misrepresented to prevent people from investigating the Church of Jesus Christ for themselves first hand.
Mormons are a friendly, God-fearing group of people and have nothing to hide. Furthermore, they welcome your inquiries. I have always held that it is fair and best to go to directly to the source. Prayer is one way to do that, but when others tell you unflattering things about Mormons or the Mormon Church, please do not take their word for it. Ask your Mormon friends, or flag down, or telephone a pair of missionaries if you have questions, and of course, do not ignore the quiet prompting of the Holy Spirit. It is through the power of the Holy Spirit that you can know of a surety that the church is true and that you need to become a member.
You might ask yourself. Why is it so important to know anyway? The answer is because there are things you need to do. Faith is the first principal of the gospel, but there are also ordinances that must be completed by those with proper authority like baptism. Some churches call these ordinances sacraments and even then to receive salvation you need the complete the various sacraments.
These ordinances/sacraments are useless unless they are performed by those with proper authority. Joseph Smith was given this authority in modern days by the resurrected beings John the Baptist (See Joseph Smith History) and also Peter, James and John, who constituted the presidency of the Church established by Christ himself during his ministry.
In addition to the necessary ordinances needed to return to our Father in Heaven, we also invite you to come to our meetings and see for yourself. (Find a Mormon Meetinghouse.)
Reading the BOM will only benefit you if you follow the admonition of Moroni (a BOM warrior-captain and prophet):
“And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.”
This is the promise of the Lord found in BOM as related to us in Moroni 10:4.
To derive the benefit and blessings of the gospel- Mormonism must be interpreted through the power of the Holy Spirit, through prayer, having an open heart and faith in Christ.
The natural progression would be to read this book, pray about it, and after you have gained a personal testimony of its truthfulness, talk to the missionaries about becoming a member of the Church via baptism. For Mormons the authority of the priesthood is paramount. We practice baptism through immersion just as Christ was baptized by John the Baptist.
It is my testimony to you that I have read this book, listened to the promptings of the Holy Spirit and know through the prism of my faith that the Church of Jesus Christ is indeed restored and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. Reading it will help you gain understanding and conviction as you develop your personal faith and develop a personal relationship with your Father in Heaven.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the restoration of the Lord’s primitive church, not a reformation, as believe Protestants. Without it the world would be utterly wasted at the second coming of Christ. (See Isaiah 60:12; also Doctrine and Covenants 2:3) Furthermore, there are modern day prophets like Mormon Prophet, Thomas S. Monson, President of the Church, and apostles just as in the primitive church during Christ’s time, who share with us the will of the Lord. The Lord speaks to us today just as he spoke to his children in antiquity. Why wouldn’t he? He loves us just as much.
The Lord has reestablished His church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon is a nickname). He is extending this opportunity to you because He loves you and is desirous you gain your own personal testimony and literally come unto Him joining His Church. It is not the Church of Joseph Smith or Brigham Young, but of Christ himself. Scripture tells us:
“And how be it my church save it be called in my name? For if a church be called in Moses’ name then it be Moses’ church; or if it be called in the name of a man then it be the church of a man; but if it be called in my name then it is my church, if it so be that they are built upon my gospel.” (See 3 Nephi 27:8, Book of Mormon)..
The Church of Jesus Christ is a vessel in the Lords hands to literally bring His children unto Him through His atoning sacrifice. I bear this record in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
This article was written by Mel Borup Chandler, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Mel Borup Chandler lives in California. He writes about science-related topics, technological breakthroughs and medicine. He is a former member of the Los Angeles Press Club. Additionally, he has also served an LDS Mission in Argentina during Argentina’s “Dirty War.”