Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormonism

Mormonism (Latter-Day Saints) and the Jehovah's Witnesses are two well-known religions in the United States. The two faiths have much in common: the religions were founded within approximately 50 years of each other in the 1800's on the American East Coast; both began with founders who were dissatisfied with mainstream Christianity; and adherents of both faiths participate in missionary activities.

Yet Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe the same things about God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit. They disagree strongly on the nature of the afterlife, on the importance of religious holidays, and they have different sacred books. The chart below is intended to organize the main similarities and differences of these two American-born faiths.

  Jehovah's Witnesses Mormonism
Religious Authority The New World Translation (NWT) of the Bible The Book of MormonThe Doctrines and CovenantsThe Pearl of Great PriceThe Bible (KJV)
Bible Sections "Hebrew Scriptures" and "Christian Greek Scriptures" (See Jehovah's Witnesses texts) "Old Testament" and "New Testament"
God Jehovah The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three distinct beings who are "one in purpose";
Trinity Rejected Mormons reject the Trinity but believe in a "Godhead"
  Also see: The Trinity in Christianity
  See Jehovah's Witnesses beliefs See Mormonism beliefs
Identity of Jesus ChristSon of God, Word of God, God's first creation, Archangel Michael
Son of God, Savior, originally one of the spirit beings that all humans used to be (see Jesus Christ). Has a physical body.
  Also see: Jesus Christ in Christianity
Holy Spirit God's active force (impersonal) A spirit being who is a separate being from God and Jesus.
Results of Fall Physical and spiritual death entered the world Denied (see Human Nature)
Free will Free to do good or evil Free to do good or evil
Purpose of Christ's Incarnation Teach about God, provide a model for right living, die sacrificially for human sin Teach about God, provide a model for right living, die sacrificially for human sin
Means of Christ's Execution Crucifixion on an upright stake (no crossbar) Crucifixion on a cross
Resurrection of Christ?YesYes
Salvation Both faith and works;
works emphasized.
Both faith and works; works emphasized
Second Chance After Death? YesYes, during a period of "learning and preparation" after death
AfterlifeSouls of wicked are annihilated, a select few Witnesses go to Heaven, other Witnesses enjoy a paradise earth for eternity
All spirits go to the spirit world, undergo preparation, then rejoin with bodies in the resurrection (see Afterlife). The good spend the intervening time in spirit paradise, while the wicked go to spirit prison.
Hell Exists in the sense of a place of the dead (Jesus went there), but hellfire does not exist; idea was invented by Satan to turn people from Jehovah.
The wicked enter an unpleasant "spirit prison" prior to judgment; after that, only the most obstinately wicked (like Satan) will be consigned to "Outer Darkness" for eternity.
Place of Worship Kingdom Hall Chapel or Temple
Meaning of SacramentsSymbolic acts commanded by Christ Ordinances are covenants between man and God and a means of grace. Some of them are necessary for salvation.
Number of SacramentsTwo: Baptism and Lord's Supper Include baptism, confirmation, the sacrament (Lord's Supper), laying on of hands, ordination, temple endowment, and marriage sealing.
SymbolsThe watchtower No official symbol; cross is not used; the angel Moroni raising a trumpet is seen atop Mormon temples (See Mormon symbols)
HolidaysMemorial of Christ's Death only Easter, Christmas, national and local holidays, birthdays, celebrations of events in Mormon history
Involvement in Politics Minimal Full
Blood Transfusions Rejected Accepted

Article Info

TitleJehovah's Witnesses and Mormonism
UpdatedNovember 10, 2015
MLA Citation“Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormonism.” 10 Nov. 2015. Web. Accessed 29 Nov. 2015. <>