Jerald and Sandra Tanner argue that Wilford Woodruff and other Church leaders essentially teach their own infallibility.

Jerald Tanner

Jerald Tanner and Sandra Tanner, Mormonism—Shadow or Reality? 5th ed. (Salt Lake City: Utah Lighthouse Ministry, 1987, 2008), 183

Utah Lighthouse Ministry
Sandra Tanner, Jerald Tanner, Wilford Woodruff, Joseph Smith, Jr., Joseph Fielding Smith, Joseph Fielding Smith, Jr.
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In Jeremiah 17:5 we read: “Thus saith the Lord; cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, . . .” This scripture means that we are not to put our trust in any man, but that we are to rely only upon God and put our trust in Him. Men can lead us into error, but God leads us only into truth and righteousness. The Mormon Church condemns the Catholic Church for teaching that the Pope is infallible. Joseph Fielding Smith, Jr., made this statement concerning the Catholic teaching of infallibility:

This dogma sets forth the belief that the “Vicar of Christ” cannot teach error because he is promised divine protection from error . . . infalibility is a fabrication devised by the powers of darkness to act as a counterfeit for revelation. (Religious Truths Defined, 1962, p. 183)

While the Mormon Church leaders condemn the Catholics for teaching the doctrine of infallibility, they teach essentially the same thing. Brigham Young stated:

The Lord Almighty leads this Church, and he will never suffer you to be led astray if you are found doing your duty. You may go home and sleep as sweetly as a babe in its mother’s arms, as to any danger of your leaders leading you astray, . . . (Journal of Discourses, vol. 9, p. 289)

Wilford Woodruff, the fourth President of the Church, stated:

“The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as the President of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the program” (Essentials in Church History, 1922, p. 609). Joseph Fielding Smith, who recently became the tenth President of the Church, once stated:

The time will never come when we will not be able to put confidence and exercise faith in the teachings and in the instruction of those who lead us . . . Therefore it behooves us, as Latter-day Saints, to put our trust in the presiding authorities of the Church, . . . Saints Safe in Following Church Authorities. No man ever went astray by following the counsel of the authorities of the Church. (Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, p. 243)

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