KJV: Jude 3 “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”
NIV: Jude 3 “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.”
The writer of Jude wrote his epistle in defense against false teachers who were bringing their heresies into the church. Referring to the material the early church had received, Jude wrote that it had been “once delivered unto the saints.” This “faith” was “the thing believed” (Expositor’s Greek New Testament, Vol. 5, p. 255.) It also “refers to the body of information believed by the early church. It is the gospel, the message of truth that brings salvation to the person who believes it. ‘Faith’ refers to a body of objective truth, not the subjective experience of believing something” (David Walls and Max Anders, I & II Peter, I, II, & III John, Jude, Holman New Testament Commentary, Nashville: Broadman 261.) In other words, it was the faith about the truth of the Gospel that they had been taught. It was delivered or handed over to them (Greek, paradidomi—surrender, yield up, entrust, literally “give over”)
This teaching was “once” delivered. That is, once for all. It is the same root the writer of Hebrews used to say, “Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.” (Hebrews 7:27) Peter also wrote, “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God,” (1 Peter 3:18). The sacrifice of Christ was a “once for all” act that could not be added to. The “faith” was once for all given to the saints and cannot be added to without changing its content.
Both the word “once” and the tense of “delivered” indicate that the action had a beginning and an end. The faith was given to them, aorist tense, meaning that the action came to an end in the past. No more faith or teaching was to be given to them.
The Book of Jude was written at the latest by 80 AD the Book of Revelation by the end of the first Century. By that time, the faith “Once for all entrusted to the saints” was complete.
The Book of Mormon claims to have been completed “In or about the year A. D. 421,” when “Moroni, the last of the Nephite prophet-historians, sealed the sacred record and hid it up unto the Lord” (Introduction to the Book of Mormon.) If the Book of Mormon is true, then the latest date for the faith “once delivered to the saints” was completed by that year.
Christians then, should “contend” for that faith and fight against any teaching which tries to change it or contradict it. This was the purpose for which Jude wrote his epistle, to fight against false teaching. Anything that does not agree with that faith “once delivered” is false teaching, especially if it contradicts it.
Do the Bible and the Book of Mormon support the teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS)? Let’s take a look at what they each say.
Contradictions between the Book of Mormon, the Bible and Mormonism
The Virgin Birth of Christ
Brigham Young: “Now remember from this time forth, and forever, that Jesus Christ was not begotten by the Holy Ghost” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 1 p. 51).
Brigham Young: “The birth of the Saviour was as natural as are the births of our children, it was the result of natural action. He partook of the flesh and blood—was begotten of his Father as we were of our fathers” (Journal of Discourses vol. 8 p. 115)
Book of Mormon: Alma 7: 10 And behold, he shall be aborn of Mary, at bJerusalem which is the cland of our forefathers, she being a dvirgin, a precious and chosen vessel, who shall be overshadowed and econceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God.
Bible: Matthew 1:18-23 (KJV): 18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.
19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
If the Book of Mormon is true, then Brigham young contradicted the faith once delivered unto the saints.
The Changeable Nature of God: “As man is, God once was. As God is, man may become.”
Book of Mormon: Moroni 7: 22 For behold, God aknowing all things, being from beverlasting to everlasting, behold, he sent cangels to minister unto the children of men, to make manifest concerning the coming of Christ; and in Christ there should come every good thing.
Moroni 8: 18 “For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is aunchangeable from ball eternity to all eternity.”
Moroni 10: 19 And I would exhort you, my beloved brethren, that ye remember that he is the asame yesterday, today, and forever, and that all these gifts of which I have spoken, which are spiritual, never will be done away, even as long as the world shall stand, only according to the bunbelief of the children of men.
Mormon 9: 9 For do we not read that God is the asame byesterday, today, and forever, and in him there is no cvariableness neither shadow of changing?
Bible: Malachi 3: 6 “For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.”
Psalm 90: 2 “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.”
Numbers 23: 19 “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?”
God has a Body
Joseph Smith: “God Himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man and sits enthroned in yonder heavens” (The King Follett Discourse)
Doctrine and Covenants 130:22 “The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of cSpirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not ddwell in us.”
Book of Mormon: Alma 18: 24 And Ammon began to speak unto him with aboldness, and said unto him: Believest thou that there is a God?
25 And he answered, and said unto him: I do not know what that meaneth.
26 And then Ammon said: Believest thou that there is a aGreat Spirit?
27 And he said, Yea.
28 And Ammon said: This is God. And Ammon said unto him again: Believest thou that this Great Spirit, who is God, created all things which are in heaven and in the earth?
29 And he said: Yea, I believe that he created all things which are in the earth; but I do not know the heavens.
Bible: John 4:24 “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”
Luke 24: 39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.”
2 Corinthians 3: 17 “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”
According to D&C 130:22, the Holy Ghost is a “personage of Spirit” and as such “has not a body of flesh and bone.” Jesus said that God is spirit and that a “spirit hath not flesh and bones” (Luke 24:39). If God is spirit, as both the Bible and Book of Mormon teach, how then can Joseph Smith teach that “The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s”? Joseph Smith’s teaching contradicts both the Bible and the Book of Mormon. Thus present day Mormonism does not contend for the faith once delivered to the saints, but rather contradicts it.
Plurality of Gods:
Book of Mormon: Alma 11:26-31 “26 And Zeezrom said unto him: Thou sayest there is a true and living God?
27 And Amulek said: Yea, there is a true and living God.
28 Now Zeezrom said: Is there more than one God?
29 And he answered, No.
30 Now Zeezrom said unto him again: How knowest thou these things?
31 And he said: An aangel hath made them known unto me. “
Bible: Isaiah 43:10-11: “10 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.
11 I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour.”
Isaiah 44: 8 “Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? ye are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any.”
Isaiah 45: 5-6: “I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.”
Isaiah 45: 18 “For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.”
Isaiah 45: 21 “Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me.”
John 17: 3 “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”
Further evidence of changing the faith once delivered to the saints
Doctrine and Covenants 132: 1-6:
1 Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you my servant Joseph, that inasmuch as you have inquired of my hand to know and understand wherein I, the Lord, justified my servants Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as also Moses, David and Solomon, my servants, as touching the principle and doctrine of their having many awives and bconcubines—
2 Behold, and lo, I am the Lord thy God, and will answer thee as touching this matter.
3 Therefore, aprepare thy heart to receive and bobey the instructions which I am about to give unto you; for all those who have this law revealed unto them must obey the same.
4 For behold, I reveal unto you a new and an everlasting acovenant; and if ye abide not that covenant, then are ye bdamned; for no one can creject this covenant and be permitted to enter into my glory.
5 For all who will have a ablessing at my hands shall abide the blaw which was appointed for that blessing, and the conditions thereof, as were instituted from before the foundation of the world.
6 And as pertaining to the new and aeverlasting covenant, it was instituted for the fulness of my bglory; and he that receiveth a fulness thereof must and shall abide the law, or he shall be damned, saith the Lord God.
This passage clearly teaches an “everlasting covenant” (verse 4) given by a quote from God, (thus saith the Lord” verse 1). Anyone who “abide(s) not that covenant…[is] damned; for no one can reject this covenant and be permitted to enter into my glory.” What is this covenant? “The principle and doctrine of their having many awives and bconcubines.”
Without practicing polygamy, no one can enter into God’s glory according to the word of the Lord in that section of the D&C. Not only will they not enter His glory, they are “damned” (v. 4). One must receive it and “shall abide the law, or he shall be damned, saith the Lord God.”
The only true Latter Day Saints are those who practice polygamy. Yet in 1890 the LDS church renounced polygamy to enter into the union. If the doctrine of plural wives is an “everlasting covenant”, their response to being asked to give it up should have been like that of Peter and John in Acts 4:19, “Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.” The LDS church should have followed the supposed dictate of the Lord, kept polygamy and remained out of the Union.