Joseph Smith – A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing?

Many have interpreted Matthew 7:15 which read “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” as applying to Joseph Smith, the alleged “prophet” of the Mormons. This scripture is often coupled with others mentioning false prophets, such as:

Mark 13:22 – For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.

Matthew 24:24 – For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

Matthew 24:11 – And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

1 John 4:1 – Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

2 Corinthians 11:13 – For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

Revelation 16:13 – And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet.

The logic for many seems to be “Joseph Smith called himself a prophet, the Bible mentions false prophets, therefore Joseph Smith is a false prophet because he is called a ‘prophet’.”

Of course this is a rather weak argument and undermines itself. The very fact that the Bible warns against false prophets leads us to believe there will be true prophets and false prophets, and it tells us how to identify the false vs. the true. If there were to be no true prophets, it would simply have been easier for the writers of the books of the Bible to have declared in simple terms “If anyone claims to be a prophet, don’t believe them, because after the Bible there will be no more prophets.”

The next step in this argument is to bring in the “by their fruits ye shall know them” verses, as follows:

Matthew 7:15-23

15. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17. Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
21. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
22. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23. And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Many times this scripture is quoted as though it provided all the proof necessary to convict Joseph Smith of being a false prophet, as though it is obvious and no explanation is necessary. But it’s only natural to follow this to the question “What exactly are the evil fruits of Joseph Smith that prove he was a false prophet rather than a true one?”

And that’s where I leave the question to you. What do you think?


  1. One of the issues that arose in the early days of the church was the Blacks being unable to receive the priesthood. Another issue that arose was polygamy. People use obth of these to point to Joseph Smith being a false prophet.

    However, they do not delve deeply enough into the issue to find out that Joseph Smith was not the one who prevented blacks from having the priesthood and in fact the "ban" was not put in place until after his death. When it comes to the polygamy, they don't look at the circumstances of that either.

    Nonetheless, these are the "fruits" that they point to when they are trying to prove that he was a false prophet.

  2. Yep. False prophet, but not because the bible says so. Common sense does.

  3. When I asked my parents for a trampoline, they said trampolines were too expensive and too dangerous. They said it was common sense. But the guy at the trampoline store told me they weren't expensive or dangerous. I guess different people have different ideas about what the term "common sense " means. I still can't believe my parents would like to me like that.

  4. That's their MO. They start off with Santa and the Easter Bunny. Then the next thing you know they move on the big ones like trampolines and Camaros.

  5. Deuteronomy 18:22: If a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD but the thing does not take place or prove true, it is a word that the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; do not be frightened by it.

    Prophesy that the earth will tremble and the sun be hidden in "not many days": "For not many days hence and the earth shall tremble and reel to and fro as a drunken man; and the sun shall hide his face, and shall refuse to give light; and the moon shall be bathed in blood; and the stars shall become exceedingly angry, and shall cast themselves down as a fig that falleth from off a fig-tree," (Doctrine and Covenants 88:87) See context

    The sun hasn't yet been hidden nor has the moon hidden its face.

    This prophecy was given on 12/27/1832.

    Pearl of Great Price

    Prophecy that Isaiah 11 was about to be fulfilled – "In addition to these, he quoted the eleventh chapter of Isaiah, saying that it was about to be fulfilled. He quoted also the third chapter of Acts, twenty-second and twenty-third verses, precisely as they stand in our New Testament. He said that that prophet was Christ; but the day had not yet come when 'they who would not hear his voice should be cut off from among the people,' but soon would come," (Pearl of Great Price, Joseph Smith, History, verse 40). See context

    Isaiah 11:6-9 says, "And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, And the leopard will lie down with the kid, And the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little boy will lead them. 7Also the cow and the bear will graze; Their young will lie down together; And the lion will eat straw like the ox. 8And the nursing child will play by the hole of the cobra, And the weaned child will put his hand on the viper's den. 9They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord As the waters cover the sea."

    This has not yet been fulfilled. The wolf is not dwelling with the lamb, the calf and the lion are not together, nor are the cow and bear grazing together. The lion is not eating straw like an ox. Nursing children are not playing in the dens of cobras.

    Joseph Smith was also interested in the second coming of Jesus Christ. So much so, that he tried to peg Christ’s return to a particular year – 1891. Smith said, “It is the will of the Lord that those who went to Zion, with a determination to lay down their lives, if necessary, should be ordained to the ministry, and go forth to prune the vineyard for the last time, or the coming of the Lord, which was night – even fifty-six years, should wind up the scene.” (The History of the Church, vol II, page 182). Zion here refers to Jackson County, Missouri – not to Israel. Given the context in which this was said, the fifty-six year time frame would place the return of Jesus on or before February 14, 1891. Many Mormon periodicals demonstrated that zealous Mormons were anxiously awaiting the fulfillment of that prophecy. February 14, 1891 came and went with no second coming. It was truly a disappointing Valentine’s Day for many faithful Mormons.

  6. Joseph Smith was a man with many sins and problems, like any other man. The problem is the Church and it's leadership, in it's efforts to retain control and it's memberships, has perpetrated lies and cover ups to keep their members in the dark about him and his failures. They want him kept up on a pedestal so there won't be any scrutiny.

    The facts are JS had many polygamous marriages, he destroyed a printing press that was going to expose him (the reason he went to Carthage Jail), and he had a gun on him and fired it 3 times killing 2 men (he was not like a lamb to the slaughter, unless lambs shoot guns). He also drank wine, and not just at Communion and after his Word of Wisdom revelation. The Church tries to hide these facts, just watch any church movie about JS's life, and you will not see any of this mentioned. They say anyone who said these things were "against the prophet" and not reliable, but anyone who said nice things about JS is reliable! This is the real travesty, the distortion of truth for control.

  7. If prophet JS indeed shot 3 times and killed 2 people and had many marriages, the prophecy in Matthew 7:15-23 are fulfilled in him.

  8. Evil fruits of Mormonism: Polygamy (there are still break off sects that follow Smith and still practice polygamy due to Smith's teachings: Warren Jeffs and others), murder (Mountain Meadows, blood atonement, and the Danites), racism (teachings of dark skinned people being "fence sitters" in the preexistence and no priesthood for blacks), depression (Utah has the highest use of anti-depressant drug use in the country), pornography (Utah also has the highest percentage online porn subscriptions), Atheism (a high percentage of Mormons who learn the truth are burned out on religion after being told its the "one true church" turn their backs on God all together), suicide (Utah has a very high suicide rate with a recent CDC study showing teens in Utah having the highest risk and suicidal thoughts in the country), lies of omission and deception in the name of protecting the Church (including actual prophets lying under oath about their polygamy and involvement in murders). By their fruits ye shall know them!

    Joseph Smith had many bad fruits…and Jesus said a good tree could not bear bad fruit! He also said they would be "cut off", which JS was definitely cut off!

    This is why you need to place your faith in JESUS alone, he had NO BAD FRUIT! The error is when you think you have to place your faith in an institution as having "the truth" when JESUS is the truth! He is The Way, The Truth and the Life! He said so. Not your church led by fallible men. You don't need an organized institution telling you what to do, especially one with all of the lies, deception, and bad fruit of the Mormon church. The veil was torn and all can come to God through Jesus without any other mediators! Praise the Lord! And Mormons sewed the veil back up and make people believe they need their prophets and temples to get to God, when Jesus said otherwise.

  9. I am chirstian, and I have read the bible and studied it closley, Joseph Smith claims an Angel came to him and spoke ot him to lead his own chruch, but in the bible God says don't listen to any angel or being that claims to have been sent by god it's of evil.

    • So Mary shouldn't have listened to the angel who told her that she would be the mother of Christ?

  10. James, the first claim of Joseph Smith was that he saw Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and that Christ told him to restore His Church. Angels came after he first saw God Himself and His Son Jesus Christ. So if you want to contest a claim you would have to start with Joseph seeing God and His Son.

  11. Can anyone address the bad fruits of Mormonism I listed?

    I will elaborate on James' statement, Paul warns us not to listen to any angel or being who preaches a different gospel or a different Jesus than the one he and the other apostles preached. JS did just that, so those are the angels or beings you are not to trust. It is to be tested against God's word and if the prophecy comes true. Mary could have read in the Tanakh that a virgin would bear a son, then when it came true, she could clearly see the angel Gabriel was of God. When you see the fruits of Mormonism, how can you say what JS saw was true??

  12. You Mormons have such low standards for a Prophet. To me a Prophet is not a prophet unless he prophesy. Tell me when was the last time any of your so called Prophets prophesied anything besides "LET'S GO SHOPPING".?

  13. Prophecies of Joseph Smith Jr.


    An Address To All Believers In Christ, David Whitmer, pp. 30-31, Winter 1829-1830:

    Joseph Smith sent Hiram Page and Oliver Cowdery to Toronto, Canada, to sell the copyright of the Book of Mormon in response to the following revelation that he claimed to have received from God through his “seer stone.”

    “Joseph looked into the hat in which he placed the stone, and received a revelation that some of the brethren should go to Toronto, Canada, and that they would sell the copy-right of the Book of Mormon. Hiram Page and Oliver Cowdery went to Toronto on this mission, but they failed entirely to sell the copy-right, returning without any money. Joseph was at my father’s house when they returned. I was there also, and am an eye witness to these facts. Jacob Whitmer and John Whitmer were also present when Hiram Page and Oliver Cowdery returned from Canada. Well, we were all in great trouble; and we asked Joseph how it was that he had received a revelation from the Lord for some brethren to go to Toronto and sell the copy-right, and the brethren had utterly failed in their undertaking. Joseph did not know how it was, so he enquired of the Lord about it, and behold the following revelation came through the stone: ‘Some revelations are of God; some revelations are of man; and some revelations are of the devil.’ So we see that the revelation to go to Toronto and sell the copy-right was not of God, but was of the devil or the heart of man.”

  14. I have a question for you Mormons If Joseph Smith didn't know if his prophesies where of God man or of the Devil. How do you know if any of his prophesies are from GOD,MAN OR THE DEVIL

    • Most men seek answers from the precepts of men and deny The power of The Holy Ghost but by By The Power of The Holy Ghost is how you gain a testimony.Ask in Faith nothing waivering and if you be sincere you will receive a testimony of its truthfulness when the lord wants to tell you in his due time. From Moroni 10:3-5 3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.

      4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

      5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

  15. As for the Book of Mormon, check out Galations 1: 8 & 9. (We were warned about other gospels like this Book of Mormon)

  16. The Holy Ghost is how you find a testimony of The Book of Mormon unless you want to deny the power of God and The Holy Ghost which according to the Bible is not advisable and if you keep listening to the precepts of man you will never get an answer and will live in darkness when you could have been walking in the light in The name of Jesus Christ Amen. 3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.

    4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

    5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

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