LDS Church History documents that their mormon founder, Joseph Smith, lied to a large group of people about his having multiple wives.
In History of the Church Vol. 6, p. 408-412 it records an “Address of the Prophet” on Sunday, May 26, 1844 where Joseph Smith states:
“What a thing it is for a man to be accused of committing adultery, and having seven wives, when I can only find one.”
Evidence suggests he was married to at least 25 women at the time of that statement. It’s also interesting to note that he seems to recognized to the crowd that it would be adultery if he had multiple wives. It’s documented that Emma did not have knowledge of all of Joseph Smith’s wives.
Though the LDS church did not acknowledge Joseph Smith’s polygamy for a long time, the have now recognized on their own site, that he was engaged in polygamy in 1841, which is 3 years prior to his denying it and constantly being engaged in it.
Not only did Joseph Smith marry him self to single women, but he also married him self to women who already had living husbands! Of the over 30 wives that Joseph Smith had, 11 of them were already married to other men! I think that’s usually called adultery.
Joseph Smith even married women as young as 14, to which at least one of the girls was promised that “If you will take this step, it will ensure your eternal salvation & exaltation and that of your father’s household & all of your kindred.” This could be quite some coercion for a 14 year old girl.
Joseph Smith was also brought to court and called “glass looker”, or in other words, trying to mislead other people into thinking he could see buried treasure in peep stone. Joseph and his father were well known for scrying, divination by looking into a seer stone. Joseph Smith also had multiple other run ins with the law, a conviction for illegal banking, and for destroying a printing press which was exposing his polygamy:
So what does the bible have to say about these kind of things? In 1 Timothy 3:2 it tells us that a church leader “must be blameless, the husband of one wife…” And other places in the bible there are some related comments about those purporting to be prophets:
Jeremiah 23:14 “But in the prophets of Jerusalem I have seen a horrible thing: they commit adultery and walk in lies;”
Jeremiah 23:26 “How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart;”
Deuteronomy 18:20 “But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.”
1841 – Joseph Smith begins polygamy in secret.
1842 – Joseph Smith reveals new temple ceremonies (which are a copy of Freemasonry) and uses the Freemason’s principles of secrecy as an excuse to marry him self to multiple women and keep them secret.
1843 – Joseph Smith records a “revelation” of plural marriage to LDS Church, and with it comes the permission from “God” that if his current wife doesn’t agree to it, he can hide it from her (D&C 132:55).
1844 – Joseph Smith dies.
Is it a coincidence that Joseph Smith died not long after lying in public about his polygamy, and coming up with revelations that basically allow him to what would otherwise be considered as adultery? Possibly so. But Deuteronomy does seem to indicate that a prophet who speaks presumptuously for God will die, so this could be an easy indicator of a false prophet.