African Americans and the Mormon Church
By Ed Decker
FOR NEARLY 140 YEARS, Mormonism (the "Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints") has taught that the black people are "inferior" and are "cursed" by God. The Mormon leaders who have taught these things in the name of Christianity are revered as "prophets, seers and revelators" by their Church, and their plain words about these cruel, unscriptural teachings remain for the world to judge.
However, in June, 1978, Mormon leaders attempted to erase over a century of outside resentment with the announcement that "worthy" black persons could receive privileges and secret initiations which had always been denied them in Mormonism. This strange, unexpected turnabout came as Mormon leaders were planning to initiate their final drive to send their "missionaries" into the remaining lands of the world where Mormonism has been most resisted-particularly Africa.
Surely, this cannot be mere coincidence. Nevertheless, the firm Mormon teaching that a whole race of people are "cursed with a black skin" for sins committed by them before they were born remains to this very day, no announcement or "revelation" has removed it.
The following quotations, taken from authoritative doctrinal writings and speeches by Mormon Prophets (their supreme earthly leaders) and Apostles, should serve as a sobering warning of the true nature of Mormonism. It is a religion which curses an entire people one day, and offers them greater privileges" the next.
May true Christians beware of all such hypocrisy!
(Second Prophet and President of the Mormon Church)
"I have never yet preached a sermon and sent it out to the Children of men, that they may not call scripture!" Journal of Discourses, Volume 13, page 95.
"You see some classes of the human family that are black, uncouth, uncomely, disagreeable, sad, low in their habits, wild, ad seemingly without the blessings of the intelligence that is generally bestowed upon mankind. The first man that committed the odious crime of killing one of his brethren will be cursed the longest of any one of the children of Adam. Cain slew his brother. Cain might have been killed, and that would have put termination to that line of human beings. This was not to be and the Lord put a mark on him, which is the flat nose and black skin. Trace mankind down to after the flood, and then other curse is pronounced upon the same race - that they would be the "servant of servants;" and they will be, until that curse is removed; and the Abolitionists cannot help it, nor in the least alter that decree." Journal of Discourses, Volume 7, pages 290 291
"In our first settlement in Missouri, it was said by our enemies that we intended to tamper with the slaves, not that we had any idea of the kind, for such a thing never entered our minds. We knew that the children of Ham were to be the "servant of servants," and no power under heaven could hinder it, so long as the Lord would permit them to welter under the curse and those were known to be our religious views concerning them." Journal of Discourses, Volume 2, page 172.
"Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so." Journal of Discourses, Volume 10, page 110.
(First Prophet and President and Founder of the Mormon Church)
"Had I anything to do with the negro, I would confine them by strict law to their own species and put them on a national equalization.'' History of the Church, Volume 5, pages 218-219.
BRUCE R. McCONKIE
(of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Mormon Church)
"Those who were less valiant in the pre-existence and who thereby had certain spiritual restrictions imposed upon them during mortality are known to us as the negroes. Such spirits are sent to earth through the lineage of Cain, the mark put upon him for his rebellion against Cod and his murder of Abel being a black skin.... Noah's son Ham married Egyptus, a descendant of Cain, thus preserving the negro lineage through the flood....The negroes are not equal with other races when the receipt of certain spiritual blessings are concerned, particularly the priesthood and the temple blessings that flow therefrom, but this inequality is not of man's origin. It is the Lord's doing, based on His eternal laws of justice, and grows out of the lack of spiritual valiance of those concerned in their first estate." Mormon Doctrine, 10th printing, pages 527-528.
"Racial degeneration, resulting In differences In appearance and spiritual aptitude, has arisen since the fall. We know the circumstances under which the posterity of Cain (and later of Ham) were cursed with what we call negroid racial characteristics." Mormon Doctrine, page 616.
"Though he was a rebel and an associate of Lucifer in the preexistence, and though he was a liar from the beginning whose name was Perdition, Cain managed to attain the privilege of mortal birth....As a result of his rebellion, Cain was cursed with a dark skin; he became the father of the negroes, and those spirits who are not worthy to receive the priesthood are born through his lineage. He became the first mortal to be cursed as a son of perdition." Mormon Doctrine, page 109.
"Through Ham (a name meaning black) "the blood of the Canaanites was preserved" through the flood, he having married Egyptus, a descendant of Cain....Negroes are thus descendants of Ham, who himself also was cursed apparently for marrying into the forbidden lineage." Mormon Doctrine, page 343.
"....in a broad general sense, caste systems have their root and origin in the gospel itself, and when they operate according to the divine decree, the resultant restrictions and segregation are right and proper and have the approval of the Lord. To illustrate: Cain Ham, and the whole negro race have been cursed with a black skin, the mark of Cain, so they can be identified as a caste apart, a people with whom the other descendants of Adam should not intermarry." Mormon Doctrine, page 114.
MARK E. PETERSON
(of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Mormon Church)
"Who placed the Negroes originally in darkest Africa? Was it some man, or was it God? And when He placed them there, He segregated them.... The Lord segregated the people both as to blood and place of residence. At least in the cases of the Lamanites and the negroes we have the definite word of the Lord Himself that He placed a dark skin upon them as a curse - as a punishment and as a sign to all others. He forbade intermarriage with them under threat of extension of the curse
"....And He certainly segregated the descendants of Cain when He cursed the Negro as to the Priesthood, and drew an absolute line. You may even say He dropped an Iron curtain there. The Negro was cursed as to the Priesthood, and therefore, was cursed as to the blessings of the Priesthood. Certainly God made a segregation there.
"Think of the Negro, cursed as to the Priesthood. Are we prejudiced against him? Unjustly, sometimes we are accused of having such a prejudice. But what does the mercy of God have for him? This Negro, who, in the pre-existence lived the type of life which justified the Lord in sending him to the earth in the lineage of Cain with a black skin, and possibly being born in darkest Africa , if that Negro is willing when he hears the gospel to accept it, he may have many of the blessings of the gospel. In spite of all he did in the pre-existent life, the Lord is willing, if the Negro accepts the gospel with real, sincere faith, and is really converted, to give him the blessings of baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost...."
"If I were to marry a Negro woman and have children by her, my children would all be cursed as to the priesthood. Do I want my children cursed as to the priesthood? If there is one drop of negro blood in my children, as I have read to you, they receive the curse, There isn't any argument, therefore, as to intermarriage with the Negro, is there? There are 50 million Negroes in the United States. If they were to achieve complete absorption with the white race, think what that would do. With 50 million Negroes inter-married with us, where would the priesthood be? Who could hold it, in all America? Think what that would do to the work of the Church!....
"Now we are generous with the Negro. We are willing that the Negro have the highest kind of education. I would be willing to let every Negro drive a Cadillac if they could afford it. I would be willing that they have all the advantages they can get out of life in the world. But let them enjoy these things among themselves. I think the Lord segregated the Negro and who is man to change that segregation?" Race Problems - as They Affect The Church (address given at Brigham Young University)
JOSEPH FIELDING SMITH
(Tenth Prophet and President of the Mormon Church)
"I would not want you to believe that we bear any animosity toward the Negro. "Darkies" are wonderful people, and they have their place in our church." Look magazine, October 22, 1963, page 79.
"There is a reason why one man is born black and with other disadvantages, while another is born white with great advantage. The reason is that we once had an estate before we came here, and were obedient, more or less, to the laws that were given us there. Those who were faithful in all things there received greater blessings here, and those who were not faithful received less.... There were no neutrals in the war in heaven. All took sides either with Christ or with Satan. Every man had his agency there, and men receive rewards here based upon their actions there, just as they will receive rewards hereafter for deeds done in the body. The Negro, evidently, is receiving the reward he merits." Doctrines of Salvation, Volume 1, pages 66-67.
"President Brigham Young, answering a question put to him by Elder Lorenzo D. Young in a meeting held December 25 , 1869, in Salt Lake City, said that Joseph Smith had declared that the Negroes were not neutral in heaven, for all the spirits took sides, but the posterity of Cain are black because he (Cain) committed murder." The Way to Perfection, pages 105-106.
"That negro race, for instance, have been placed under restrictions because of their attitude in the world of spirits, few will doubt. It cannot be looked upon as just that they should be deprived of the power of the Priesthood without it being a punishment for some act, or acts, performed before they were born." The Way to Perfection, page 43.
"Not only was Cain called upon to suffer, but because of his wickedness he became the father of an inferior race. A curse placed upon him and that curse has been continued through his lineage and must do so while time endures. Millions of souls have come into this world cursed with a black skin and have been denied the privilege of Priesthood and the fullness of the blessings of the Gospel. These are the descendants of Cain. Moreover, they have been made to feel their inferiority and have been separated from the rest of mankind from the beginning.... we will also hope that blessings may eventually be given to our negro brethren, for they are our brethren-children of God-not withstanding their black covering emblematical of eternal darkness." The Way to Perfection, pages 101-102.
"Ham, through Egyptus, continued the curse which was placed upon the seed of Cain. Because of that curse this dark race was separated and isolated from all the rest of Adam's posterity before the flood, and since that time the same condition has continued, and they have been 'despised among all people.' This doctrine did not originate with President Brigham Young but was taught by the Prophet Joseph Smith .... we all know it is due to his teachings that the negro today is barred from the Priesthood."
The Way to Perfection, pages 110-111.
(Third Prophet and President of the Mormon Church)
"...after the flood we are told that the curse that had been pronounced upon Cain was continued through Ham's wife, as he had married a wife of that seed. And why did it pass through the flood? Because it was necessary that the devil should have a representation a upon a the earth as well as God;...." Journal of Discourses, Volume 22, page 304.
"When he (Satan) destroyed the inhabitants of the antediluvian worlds, he suffered a descendant of Cain to come through the flood in order that he might be properly represented upon the earth." Journal of Discourses, Volume 23, page 336
(of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Mormon Church)
".... among the Saints (i.e., Mormons] is the most likely place for these [pre-existent) spirits to take their tabernacles, through a just and righteous parentage....The Lord has not kept them in store for five or six thousand years past, and kept them waiting for their bodies all this time to send them among the Hottentots, the African Negroes, the idolatrous Hindoos, or any other of the fallen nations of the earth. They are not kept in reserve in order to come forth to receive such a degraded parentage upon the earth; no, the Lord is not such a being." Journal of Discourses, Volume 1, page 63.
THERE ARE OTHER TEACHINGS OF MORMONISM which separate it forever from Christianity and the Holy Bible.
Specifically, Mormonism also teaches:
That God the Father has a body of flesh and bones, and was once a sinful man on another planet.
That Jesus Christ Is the brother of Lucifer, the Devil.
That the sayings of their inspired leaders are superior to the Bible.
That "there are more gods than there are particles on a million earths"
That men can become gods themselves by joining the Mormon church, and can create and populate their own earths.
That the shed blood of Christ is not sufficient to save us from our sins, and that men cannot be saved by grace through faith, but by our works of righteousness.
That the Mormon Church is the only true church on earth, to the exclusion of all others.
That man cannot gain eternal life and enter the presence of the Lord outside of Mormonism.
(All of the above teachings are well-documented.)
"And many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many." Matt: 24:11
"But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed." Galatians 1:8
"Test all things; hold fast that which is good." I Thessalonians 5.21