Similarities and Differences between Judaism and LDS

A Survey: What Do Jews Really Know

A Church survey conducted during the 1970’s concluded the following about mainstream modern-day Jews.

Many Jewish people know very little about their own Jewish identity or the difference between the terms Jews, Israelites, or Hebrews.

Many don’t know the origins of their traditions, the nature or personality of God, or Messianic literature, expectations or purposes. The concepts they do embrace are generally incorrect.

Jews know little about the meaning or tradition of priesthood. The rabbi, Jewish spiritual leader, is not ordained. He is appointed by the congregation and can be dismissed by them.

Jews have a small knowledge of the prophet Isaiah and all other prophets. Many congregations do not tithe, but many give to aid in the building and preservation of their synagogue and schools.

Jewish religious training basically prepares children for their rites of passage ceremonies (Bar and Bat Mitzvahs and confirmations). They are taught correct observances of Jewish holidays and traditions but little insight into Talmudic knowledge or history is offered.

Many Jews do not know Hebrew or Yiddish.

Jews do not believe Jesus Christ is their Mashiach (Messiah). They reject and revile the idea that he came to teach Messianic scriptures to the Jews and that he was their “king”.Because of many omissions and corruptions to worship practices that have occurred in modern times, the Jewish people have been left with no saving ordinances. This is not a criticism, but a deeply disturbing fact. They don’t know what a saving ordinance is, or that they must have it to partake of the glory that is available to all of us.

Main Similarities:

Members of the twelve families of Israel   Both

Under the Avrahamic Covenant  Both

called Covenant Israel because the blood of Israel is in their veins   Both

Worship the same Heavenly Father Both Belief in the Ten Commandments as given to Moses   Both

Belief in a kingdom of priests and a holy nation  Both

Ancient holders of holy priesthoods  Both

Belief in angels, holy and unholy visitations  Both

Belief in the idea and reality of a Messianic figure Both

Belief in sacrifice as atonement for sin Both

Belief in Old Testament (Torah) prophets, revelations from God  Both

Belief the Mashiach will be a descendant of Davidic line  Both

Belief in temples. The synagogue is a type of temple  Both

Belief in prayer, sacred religious rituals and consecrated behaviors  Both

Practice a form of baptism, anointing, laying on of hands  Both

Administer “new” names to those completing ordinances  Both

Belief in giving aid, monetary assistance and other charity to those in need   Both

Belief in a pre-mortal life and an afterlife   Both

LDS believe Elijah has returned. Jews believe he will return on the Passover   Both

Do not see death as tragedy   Both

Belief in the eventual redemption of the dead Both

Believe in eventual resurrection of the dead  Both

Belief in the End Days theories that will bring peace and joy   Both

Congregations led by appointed representatives   Both

Believe in living basic Mosaic law of chastity, honesty, charity, Sabbath observance   Both

Crosses not used as symbols in either church or synagogue   Both

Both religions acknowledge Jesus as a teacher of righteousness   Both

Both religions have strict dietary laws   Both

Jews and Mormons wear sacred garments under clothes, outer vestments   Both

General knowledge or interest in scripture learning, reading, quoting  Both

Members encouraged to study, learn and achieve   Both

Members are taught self-sufficiency    Both

Belief in family as essential to a happy, productive life, basis of society    Both

Belief in marrying inside the religion and culture    Both

Belief in an Adversary and his evil influences     Both

Belief that good overcomes evil   Both

Acknowledgement of mysteries of creation beyond human knowledge   Both

Societies have undergone religious persecution, exodus, re-settlement for beliefs   Both

Belief that God will personally reign upon the earth (Jews: Elohim) (LDS: Christ)    Connections

Former and latter-day prophets have used the Urim and Thummim     Connections

The Jewish Tanakh scriptures have parallels and similarities to the LDS “quad” in subject matter, wisdom, purpose     Connections

LDS temple ordinances, symbols are based upon sacred Israelite rites and practices     Connections

Belief in revelation and prophecy available to anyone (Jews: rabbis exert powerful but limited influence) Connections

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints based upon Mosaic Law as given to Moses    Connections

Jews know their Messiah will come. He will be a Jew. LDS know that the Savior has come and is Jesus Christ Connections Messianic Jews already know that Jesus is the Christ. They call him Yeshua Connections

Book of Mormon prophets are descendents of Hebrew prophets, although the Jewish people are as yet unaware of it    Connections

Book of Mormon prophets as well as Hebrew prophets have received revelations about the gathering in these last days of the 10 lost tribes and their eventual return to Israel    Connections

Circumcision practiced. Jews: a covenant with God and the mark of their identity. LDS: having a broken heart and a contrite spirit    Connections

Mormon prophets pray for the redemption of Israel and the gathering of Israel to the lands of their inheritance. Jews pray for peace and redemption of Israel to Jerusalem    Connections

Two additional connections between Jews and the Restoration of the Gospel:

(1) The Golden Plates were delivered by the angel Moroni to Joseph Smith on Rosh Hashonah, September 22, 1827, when Jews all over the world were praying for the restoration of the brit, meaning covenant.

(2) Following the restoration of the Gospel on Passover, April 3, 18 36, the Lord Yeshua appeared in vision to the Prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in the Kirtland, Ohio temple.


Main Differences    (Key- Jewish=yes.  LDS=yes. LDS n/a or Jewish n/a=no)

Monotheism Jewish     LDS   n/a

Belief in Torah as final arbiter of all of life’s rules, rewards, the garment of life    Jewish              LDS  n/a

Method of prayer is ritualistic. Prayers are recited exactly as written     Jewish          LDS   n/a

Open canon, not a finalized religion or culture Jewish LDS Knowledge that families of Joseph are to bring Judah into the LDS church LDS Interest in or understanding of Jesus the Christ                       Jewish  n/a       LDS

The Messiah has arrived and is Jesus Christ    Jewish  n/a           LDS

Atonement of Savior has been accomplished     Jewish   n/a          LDS

The Messiah put on mortality through Mary, immortality through God     Jewish  n/a      LDS

Personal savior recognized as Jesus. Prayers offered in Jesus’ name    Jewish   n/a           LDS

Personal prayers taught and encouraged LDS Belief in modern revelation or promptings    Jewish  n/a       LDS

Modern prophets lead restored Church of Jesus Christ    Jewish  n/a          LDS

Priesthood restoration has been accomplished      Jewish   n/a              LDS

Lay leaders, unpaid clergy n/a LDS Literal belief in life after death for the soul of man   Jewish  n/a      LDS

Saving ordinances    Jewish   n/a       LDS

Acknowledgement of a modern temple     Jewish  n/a         LDS

Ordinance work for dead (Elijah’s return) has been restored   Jewish  n/a         LDS

From: Muchnick, Marlena Tanya; Baker, Daniel C;  (2005-04-01). A Mormon’s Guide to Judaism: Introduction to Jewish Religion and Culture for Latter-day Saints (Kindle Locations 1131-1181). Granite Publishing and Distribution. Kindle Edition.  Click on: Marlena’s main website  to order and see all books.


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