Contradictions in the Book, of Mormon

Mike Willis
Mooresville, Indiana

I have recently been studying with a Mormon which naturally resulted in an examination of the Book of Mormon and the life of the "Prophet, Seer, and Priest" Joseph Smith. Usually the Mormon will ask you to read through the Book of Mormon and then kneel down and ask God if those are His words. This I did, only I asked for proof of its truth OR its falsity.

The Book of Mormon has been accurately described as "chloroform in action." During the days spent in reading the book, I repeatedly fell asleep while reading the book. Its literary frailties are quite apparent even to an average person. Finally I succeeded in finishing the book. With the help of several other books, I found the following evidence that proves conclusively that the Book of Mormon is contradictory to the Bible.

The purpose of this article is to give you a convenient reference in answer to Mormon "Elders" who visit you door to door. Perhaps this will save someone from wasting the time it takes to wade through the Book of Mormon.

The most apparent contradiction in the book is listed as follows:

As you can easily see, the Book of Mormon states that Jesus was born in Jerusalem while the Bible states that he was born in Bethlehem. In order to reconcile the two accounts, the Mormon will usually state that Bethlehem was a "suburb" of Jerusalem that was located just a little over seven miles away. However, the word "Jerusalem" is used to name the city within its wall. Never has been found the occasion when the name was used to describe more than that area (at least to my knowledge), either in the Bible or in the Book of Mormon. In Matt. 21:17, 18 Jesus left Jerusalem to go to Bethany--just one and one-half miles away yet this was not mentioned as being a "suburb." The argument (?) of the Mormons is just a vain attempt to reconcile the Book of Mormon to the Bible.

Another bit of evidence that is noticeable is in regard to the events transpiring at the death of Jesus. Notice the following series of verses:


As is easily perceived, the contradiction in these two verses is in regard to the length of time of the darkness following the death of Christ. In order to reconcile these verses, Mormons try to apply the three days only to the American continent but in so doing they contradict their own book which specifically states "the face of the whole earth."

The Book of Mormon teaches one doctrine that leads to the following series of contradictions in regard to the establishment of the church before Christ came. Notice the following comparisons:


The passage taken from the Book of Mormon certainly occurred before Christ came to the earth and has been dated by their own book as 147 B.C. Yet, when Jesus was on the earth 180 years later, He thought that the church still needed to be built.

With the church already in existence, according to the Mosiah, naturally there would be Christians.



Either Acts 11:26 is false and the Book of Mormon is true or the Book of Mormon is false and Acts 11:26 is true in this case, because it is impossible for the two conflicting statements to both be true. As you notice, Alma had Christians before Christ should come and dated, once again by their own book, at 73 B.C. Yet, Luke said they were called Christians first at Antioch.

In addition to reference to Christians and to the Church being premature, the Book of Mormon has the disciples praying in the name of Christ prematurely.



Jesus stated that prior to that time they had asked nothing in his name (33 A.D.), but the Book of Mormon had Christians praying in Jesus' name as early as 544 B.C.

In another "inspired" Writing by Joseph Smith under the title of Doctrine and Covenants, we have the following contradiction regarding the time that repentance began to be preached in Jesus' name:


On one side we have the affirmation that repentance and redemption were preached first to Adam while on the other side we have Jesus' statement that it should begin (it had not already begun) at Jerusalem.

In a Mormon pamphlet entitled Joseph Smith's Own Story, this final contradiction will be pointed out.

"He also quoted the second chapter of Joel, from the twenty-eighth verse to the last. He also said that this was not yet fulfilled, but was soon to be." (p. 9)

On the day of Pentecost, Peter quoted the same verses in Acts 2:17-21 and preceded his usage of the passage from Joel with these words:

"For these are not drunken, as ye suppose; seeing it is but the third hour of the day; but this is that which hath been spoken through the prophet Joel:" {Acts 2:15,16). The weight of this is seen in that peter said "this is that" and was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost in 33 A.D. while Joseph Smith said "No, it has not yet been fulfilled."

In conclusion, one must point out that a person cannot follow both the Book of Mormon and the Bible. Therefore, each individual must choose which he will follow. The objective of each Bible student must be to illustrate vividly contradictions in order to let the Mormon see that he MUST choose between the two.

TRUTH MAGAZINE XIV: 14, pp. 9-11

February 12, 1970