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The People of the Book (Ahl-ul Kitab) are granted a particular status in Islam. The Christians and the Jews, those who received and follow the previous scriptures, are easily counted among their number.

Mormonism, on the other hand, was founded over a thousand years after the time of the prophet. Although ostensibly they follow the Bible and are thus an extension of Christianity and Judaism, they also follow the scriptures revealed by Joseph Smith, who they claim as a prophet.

Since they follow teachings based on the Bible, they could be considered "Ahl-ul Kitab" in the same way as the Christians. However, since they have superseded the Bible with their own scriptures, scriptures which are not known in Islam, it is unclear whether they would be classified thus or not.

Has there been any major scholarly study on this matter? Should the Mormons be treated the same as the Christians and the Jews so far as rulings are concerned?

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Not a direct answer but just an analogy I guess that occurred to me based on your question - if Mormons attribute prophethood to a false prophet who came much later, then maybe they're not all that different from the Qadiyanis, who also attribute prophethood to a false prophet and who are therefore not considered Muslims. –  user961627 Aug 15 '13 at 6:43
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2 Answers

up vote 16 down vote accepted

No, despite their roots in Christianity, Mormons are not considered to be Christian and therefore, they are not Ahl-ul Kitab. E.D. Kain's essay can be cited:

Mormons are no more Christian than Rastafarians are, regardless of their Coptic heritage. While Mormons believe in Christ and have sprung from the Christian tradition, they have added on an entirely new set of beliefs to that one that change their faith entirely and distinguish it from Christianity.

Besides that, to be Ahl-ul Kitab, you have to be monotheist. Christians, Jews and Muslims believe that there is only one God. Even when Christians believe in the Trinity of God, they all agree that there is only one. Mormons on the other hand believe that there are three different gods for this planet, and multiple gods for other planets. Therefore they are polytheists. Joseph Smith wrote:

In the beginning, the head of the gods called a council of the gods; and they came together and concocted a plan to create the world and (the) people in it.

Another quote from Joseph Smith that supports polytheism:

Many men say there is one God; the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost are only one God. I say that is a strange God [anyhow]--three in one and one in three. . .It is curious organization… All are crammed into one God according to sectarianism (Christian faith). It would make the biggest God in all the world. He would be a wonderfully big God--he would be a giant or a monster. (Joseph Smith, Teachings, 372)

So the answer is no, Mormons do not share the core view of Christians and are not Ahl-ul Kitab.

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Latter-Day-Saints, consider themselves to be Christian, also in your research you misinterpreted several things. One they are not polytheistic. The fact that they believe that man can become Like God, does not imply that they then worship many Gods. As strange as it sounds Monotheism does not preclude the possibilities of other Gods. It simply states that your belief is in one particular God, and His teachings. Finally to address something the op said. They have not in fact superseded the Bible. Their extra scripture states it is "Another testament of Jesus Christ". –  ryan Dec 18 '12 at 17:47
So it stands beside the Bible not on top of it. The Bible is very important to the LDS religion. So important that they devote 2 years of their 4 years of seminary teaching just to the study of the Bible. –  ryan Dec 18 '12 at 17:49
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To be classified under Ahlul Kitab, the person doesn't have to be monotheistic. As Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid says,

The disbelief of the disbelieving People of the Scripture, that include Jews and Christians, in our times does not expel them from being People of the Scripture.

Whoever considers Torah and Injeel as his/her main source of guidance can be considered as Ahlul Kitab regardless of their deviance and shirk (Polytheism). All their denominations and sects are also considered Ahlul Kitab as long as their source of guidance is Bible or Torah.

The scholars allow marrying their chaste women and eating their slaughtered meat even today. We do not discriminate between them based on their level of deviance. There might be believers among them and also, disbelievers.

As to the Mormons in particular, Shaykh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Barraak says,

"The Mormon sect appears to be Christian because they mention their book, which is the Gospel (New Testament)."

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