The Bible vs the Book of Mormon: Which one should you get?

As a student and professor of theology, I enjoy reading theological texts that equip me with a deeper understanding of God’s word. While reading the Book of Mormon, I found that it complimented my knowledge of the Bible almost as much as it contradicted it. So as to obtain a clear comparison between the two, I decided to compare the Bible vs. the Book of Mormon.

Both the Bible and the Book of Mormon contain accounts of God and Jesus Christ, and they both emphasize the roles of prophets as God’s messengers. On the other hand, they differ in their authorship, historical accuracy, and original languages.

In this article, I’ll extensively explore the comparisons between the Bible and the Book of Mormon, contradictions between them, and whether Christians need both of them in their spiritual journeys. Keep reading to learn more!

The Bible vs the Book Of Mormon: Differences in definition

The Bible is a compilation of 66 religious books that record events from the beginning of creation to the formation of early Christian churches. It is considered sacred in Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and other Abrahamic religions. On the other hand, the Book of Mormon is a compilation of 15 books that record the journey of three groups of people as they were led by God to the promised land in America. It is considered sacred by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Differences between the Bible and the Book of Mormon

The Bible vs the Book of Mormon
Bible and the Book of Mormon differences. Image source: Pixabay


The Bible was written by up to 40 different authors over a period of around 1600 years, from 1513 B.C. to A.D. 98. They include kings, prophets, priests, shepherds, government officials, and more. On the other hand, believers in Latter-Day Saint theology believe that the Book of Mormon was written by ancient American prophets from 600 B.C. to A.D. 400. One of the prophets appeared to Joseph Smith as an angel in 1823, showed him where the sacred text was hidden, and helped him translate it over a period of sixty days. It was then published in Palmyra in 1830.

Historical accuracy

The Bible references cities, kings, and events that have been proven to be historically accurate by archaeological findings. For example, the Mount Ebal curse tablet that is referenced in Deuteronomy 11:29 and Joshua 8:30–31 was unearthed in 2019. On the other hand, the Book of Mormon also references historical cities, events, and people, but there is still no archaeological evidence to substantiate its claims.

Original language

Theologians suggest that the Bible was originally written in Hebrew, Koine Greek, and Aramaic. The Old Testament was written in ancient Hebrew and parts of it were written in Aramaic. The New Testament was written in Koine Greek. On the other hand, followers of the Mormon faith suggest that the sacred Mormon text was originally inscribed in an ancient Egyptian language called “reformed Egyptian.”

Similarities between the Bible and The Book of Mormon

The Bible 
Bible vs The Book of Mormon. Image source: Pixabay

Since both are considered to be important religious texts in their respective faiths, the Bible and the Book of Mormon exhibit the following similarities:

They both present us with accounts of God’s dealings with the Israelites. The Old Testament of the Bible presents us with accounts of God’s dealings with the Israelites in the ancient Near East, while the Book of Mormon presents us with accounts of God’s dealings with another tribe of Israelites in the Western Hemisphere.

They both present Jesus Christ as the son of God and the savior of all mankind. The gospel books of the Bible give us a detailed account of Christ’s ministry, death, and resurrection, as do several passages in the Book of Mormon.

They both emphasize the importance of prophets as messengers of God. Prophets in both the Bible and the Book of Mormon prophesied about the coming of Jesus Christ and warned the people of God against disobeying God’s commands.

Do Christians need the Bible and the Book of Mormon?

No, theologians who oppose the Mormon faith believe that Christians only need the Bible for their spiritual growth. They argue that aside from the Book of Mormon, Mormonism draws its teachings and beliefs from other scriptures like the Doctrines and Covenants, which directly contradict the Bible.

They also argue that Christians who acknowledge the Book of Mormon as truth would also have to acknowledge Joseph Smith as a prophet, and that’s not true. This is because Deuteronomy 18:21–22 suggests that if a prophet proclaims something in the name of the Lord and it doesn’t happen, then his message does not come from God. Unfortunately, Joseph Smith prophesied a lot of things in the name of God that have yet to happen. They suggest that Christians should only believe biblical teachings and oppose any teachings that contradict with what’s in the Bible.

You should note, however, that proponents of the Mormon faith suggest that the Book of Mormon supplements and confirms the Bible and that Christians can use both of them to increase their knowledge and faith in God.

How much of the Book of Mormon is copied from the Bible?

The Book of Mormon
Book of Mormon. Image source: Pinterest

John A. Tvedness, a biblical scholar, suggests that the Book of Mormon quotes up to 478 verses from the book of Isaiah in the King James Version. 201 of these verses are exact replicas while 207 of them are variations. 58 of them are paraphrased and 11 others are variants.

Aside from the book of Isaiah, critics of the Book of Mormon imply that it also quotes verses from the King James Version of 1 Corinthians 13:4–7 (Moroni 7:45), Malachi 4:2 (3 Nephi 25:2), 2 Peter 3:10 (3 Nephi 26:3; Mormon 9:2), and Matthew 25:28 (Ether 12:35).

However, supporters of the Book of Mormon argue that it contains misspelled words that otherwise wouldn’t have been there if Joseph Smith was copying the KJV Bible. Also, they propose that it doesn’t make sense for Joseph Smith to “plagiarize” from a book that readers would recognize.

Contradictions between the Book of Mormon and the Bible

Critics of the Book of Mormon have noted that it contradicts the Bible in the following ways:

First, in 2 Nephi 2:23–25, the Book of Mormon suggests that Adam and Eve had to eat the forbidden fruit in order to fulfill God’s command for them to be fruitful and fill the earth. This teaching has no biblical basis, and it contradicts the biblical teachings that suggest that Adam and Eve’s disobedience was a sinful act that brought death upon all men (Genesis 3:16–19; Romans 5:12).

Second, in 2 Nephi 5:21, the Book of Mormon suggests that there are superior races in Christ. This contradicts the various biblical teachings that declare that there are no race, gender, or ethnic distinctions or favoritism in Christ (Acts 17:26; Galatians 3:28; James 2:1).

Third, in Helaman 14:27, the Book of Mormon suggests that darkness covered the earth for three days when Jesus was crucified. This contradicts the biblical accounts that declare that darkness covered the earth for only three hours when Jesus was crucified (Matthew 27:45; Mark 15:33; Luke 23:44).

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