Are Mormons Christians? They are Christians, but there are some differences in how they view Jesus, and this leads to misunderstandings.
Mormon is only a nickname for the church. The true name of the church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The nickname Mormon Church comes from the Book of Mormon, a book of scripture used by Mormons along with the Holy Bible.
The name of the Savior Jesus Christ is right in the middle of the name of the church, showing also His place in the church. The Book of Mormon makes the role of Jesus Christ even clearer:
23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do. …
26 And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins. (2 Nephi 25)
Even the very history of Mormonism begins with a vision of the Savior. Joseph Smith, at age 14, went into the woods to ask God in prayer which church to join. God and Jesus Christ both appeared to Him to answer His question.
And this is why some people mistakenly teach Mormons are not Christians-because Mormons, through this vision, understand that God and Jesus Christ are not the same being. They are one in that they are entirely unified in every way except for being the same being.
The Trinity, as many Christians refer to the belief that God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost are all the same being, is not taught in the Bible. In fact, the Bible, and Jesus Himself, are very clear on this subject. We frequently see Jesus Christ praying to God the Father, and He couldn’t possibly have been praying to Himself. Jesus said He came not to do His own will, but that of His Father. If they were the same person, this distinction would make no sense at all. In addition, Jesus declared His Father to be greater than Himself.
Where did the teachings of the Trinity come from? They emerged after the death of Jesus and the apostles, when there was no longer a prophet to guide them. After a time, many different doctrines began to emerge, as people became uncertain how to interpret scripture. This time is known as the Great Apostasy. One such confusion was over the nature of God. Some felt it would somehow diminish Jesus’ divinity to be God’s son, and so they made Him the same person. A council was called at the request of Constantine to unify the churches and select one set of doctrine. Although some disagreed with the concept of trinity, a few were persuaded to “convert” and the others were banished for refusing to cooperate. In this way, the churches, not God, selected the doctrine to be accepted by the Catholic Church and later by Protestants. Nowhere in the history of this meeting is there any mention of revelation being received or a prophet consulted. The decision was made by a vote of men.
Mormons ascribe to the Biblical view of Jesus, not the post-Biblical view and this makes them stand out from other churches, because they had the courage to speak out against popular misconceptions.
Are Mormons Christian? Without a doubt they are.