Smith’s Tithing Complaints about Catholics and Christians are Smoke and Mirrors

17 June

2 Corinthians 9:7; “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”

It’s interesting how Joseph Smith dogged on the Catholic Church for their stance on tithing when he, and other LDS leaders have done the very same thing. Their comments beg the question:


Why did Smith say such things about Catholics and Protestants, while mandating the same principles on his own followers? We’re taking a look at what they’ve said over the years to paint a clear picture of when calling Christians and Catholics ‘the whore of Babylon’ actually began.

Complicating matters regarding this topic, is how the Church has portrayed their history. We’ve taken a simple approach by listing events in chronological order, but you’ll see how they couldn’t resist playing the cat and mouse game, even in reporting their own history.

From the very beginning, Smith claimed in his first vision God told him not to join any church because they were all an abomination in His sight. Joseph Smith History 1:18-20. The following year he expounded upon his dismay by publishing the Book of Mormon, which told people only corrupt churches would demand money for forgiveness, and salvation.

Mormon 8:32; “Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be churches built up that shall say: Come unto me, and for your money you shall be forgiven of your sins.” – c. 400-421 AD

After his publication of the BoM in April 1829, Smith began a shell game of confusion that’s one for the books. Here’s a few of the more notable doctrines Mr. Smith, and company started preaching at that time.

In Fayette, New York on September 26, 1830, Joseph reveals to newly appointed elders the ‘great and abominable church’ will surely be cast down with fire. Doctrine and Covenants 29:21.

Five months later on January 2, 1831, God tells Joseph that he’s the only ‘clean’ one on the face of the earth, and everyone else was corrupt. Doctrine and Covenants 38:10-11. In other words, everyone was the whore of Babylon.

Just nine months after that announcement on September 11, 1831, the Mormon god declared tithing is mandatory!

Doctrine and Covenants 64:23; “Behold, now it is called today until the coming of the Son of Man, and verily it is a day of sacrifice, and a day for the tithing of my people; for he that is tithed shall not be burned at his coming.”

Strangely enough, two months afterwards on November 1, 1831, Smith claims Jesus told him all other churches on the face of the earth were corrupt. Jesus also referred again to His bride as the ‘great and abominable’ church. D&C 1:30-31.

While in Kirtland, Ohio on December 27-28, 1832 and January 3, 1833, Smith tells followers that everyone who’s been warned, should warn their neighbor. God revealed to Smith the great church which is the ‘mother of abominations’, is ‘ready to be burned’. Doctrine and Covenants 88:94.

While many other confusing references were made over the ensuing decades, we’re jumping ahead to show how their stance on this subject matter hasn’t waned a bit. However, as is usually the case, there’s always some contradictions in what their inspired leaders have to say…

October 25, 1861 – Tithing Mandatory

Journal of Discourses 10:281; “We profess to be better than the old Pharisees, and yet it seems that it is very difficult for men among us to be honest with themselves and with their God in relation to so simple a principle as this is. What is the matter? …It is the principle and not the Tithing we pay that is esteemed of the Lord, he cares not for our Tithing but he cares about our doing right. If we cannot be faithful in a few things, we cannot expect to be made rulers over many things.” – John Taylor, Great Salt Lake City, October 25, 1861

January 9, 1881 – 20 Years Later, Tithing ‘A Matter Of Very Little Importance’…

Journal of Discourses 22:6; “Tithing is a matter of very little importance; it is only a temporary idea, it does not concern us much, it is only meant to meet the financial affairs associated with the Church—and that is a matter of very little importance.” – John Taylor, Salt Lake City, January 9, 1881

So…with all the conflicting messages, just why do Mormons tithe?

Aren’t they placing themselves in jeopardy of becoming the ‘whore of the earth’ by soliciting, and subsequently offering, money for salvation?

According to the rules and regulations, no one can receive a temple recommend without proof of a tithing receipt. No temple recommend = no salvation. See Temple Recommend Interview Questions and Instructions.

Oh how we need to pray for these dear people! The pull to obey those in charge is very strong, making it difficult at best to look at things objectively. I know because I did the same thing for 30 years.

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