Mormonism … rooted in evolution?
How the Mormon belief system is ultimately materialistic
Published: 23 August 2014 (GMT+10)
The knock at the door was followed by a familiar sight as two smiling, formally dressed young men with name badges said “Hello”. Their identification as Elder such-and-such confirmed my notion that they were Mormons.
Wanting to ‘cut to the chase’ as soon as possible, after a brief introduction I said (something similar to), “Gentlemen, you have come to my door to convince me of what you believe. I’ll just be honest. I am a born–again Christian and I am going to try and convince you of what I believe. Would you mind if I asked you some questions?” They indicated they were fine with questions.
“I do not want to misrepresent what you hold to, so please correct me if I say something that isn’t right about your beliefs. From what I understand you believe that if I became a Mormon and followed your teaching, I could eventually become a god over my own planet. Is that true?”
They seemed surprised with my candour but agreed my information was correct.1 So I went on and asked; “Okay then, please tell me how I can become a god; explain the criteria.”
They gave me some specific things I would have to do including having faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, being repentant, getting baptized and receiving the Holy Spirit.
I then asked; “I also understand you believe that the first god was once a man that grew in wisdom and became a god. Is that true?” They indicated yes, that was what they believed.
[One can read that this is indeed standard teaching of the Mormon ‘church’ by reading what their founder Joseph Smith Jr (1805–1844) wrote in its regard;
"God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret. If the veil were rent today, and the great God who holds this world in its orbit, and who upholds all worlds and all things by His power, was to make himself visible—I say, if you were to see him today, you would see him like a man in form—like yourselves in all the person, image, and very form as a man; for Adam was created in the very fashion, image and likeness of God, and received instruction from, and walked, talked and conversed with Him, as one man talks and communes with another.
I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was god from all eternity, I will refute that idea, and take away the veil, so that you may see.
It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for certainty the character of God, to know that we may converse with Him as one man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us, yea that God Himself the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth the same as Jesus Christ did…Here then is eternal life—to know the only wise and true God, and you have got to learn how to be Gods yourselves, the same as all Gods have done before you.”2]
So I then asked, “Where did that first man come from? Did he evolve from lower life forms that spontaneously generated? He must have if there was no other god to have created him, right? And aren’t you saying then that the very first god became a god in a completely different way than we are supposed to be able to become gods today?” (Obviously Jesus and the Holy Spirit wouldn’t have existed yet and baptism [a symbolic act] would have been meaningless at that time).
Both looked completely dumbfounded and started mumbling back and forth to each other but finally the fellow who seemed more ‘in charge’ admitted he didn’t know the answer to those questions. They also indicated they didn’t hold to evolutionary theory.
I asked how they could believe in Mormonism when they couldn’t explain such a foundational issue (origins). We discussed other issues such as the book of Mormon’s lack of historical or archaeological evidence to support it. They seemed increasingly distressed.
“Gentlemen, you came to my door today to convince me of the truth of what you believe and I have asked you many good questions to which you seem to have no answers. Perhaps there are answers that you just don’t know. But if you go back to your leaders and cannot get real answers, maybe it’s time you recognised that perhaps what you were taught is wrong.”
This isn’t something to take lightly as it has eternal consequences. You may have been deceived into believing you will one day be gods over your own planet. Isn’t it interesting that in the Garden of Eden Satan said to Eve “You will not surely die3 … you will be like God …” (Genesis 3:4–5)
The most vocal of the two suddenly blurted out “Well when I stand in front of God He will know that I’ve done everything I can to serve Him and followed what I was taught and done it to the best of my ability etc. etc.” His ‘works’ literally fell from his mouth as he attempted to justify himself through his actions.
A different Gospel
To truly understand what Mormonism teaches we need to understand that their concept of salvation is faith plus baptism, plus works.
Full salvation is attained by virtue of knowledge, truth, righteousness, and all true principles. Many conditions must exist in order to make such salvation available to men. Without the atonement, the gospel, the priesthood, and the sealing power, there would be no salvation. Without continuous revelation, the ministering of angels, the working of miracles, the prevalence of gifts of the spirit, there would be no salvation … There is no salvation outside the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.4
And according to Mormon Theology Joseph Smith is the one who holds the keys to heaven.
—namely that not man or woman in this dispensation will ever enter into the celestial-kingdom of God without the consent of Joseph Smith. From the day that the Priesthood was taken from the earth to the winding-up scene of all things, every man and woman must have the certificate of Joseph Smith, junior, as a passport to their entrance into the mansion where God and Christ are.5
I shared the true gospel according to the Bible with them and they went on their way, visibly shaken. I genuinely felt sorry for both of them as they were both quite young and realized that their faith was something they felt strongly about (but obviously something they had not pondered deeply). I wanted to convey truth but try not to cause a stumbling block of offense.
This experience and the questions I asked were not planned out in advance, I simply stumbled through them on the spot. As a speaker with Creation Ministries International I commonly ‘go to Genesis’ when dealing with cults because it is an area I am comfortable with and the cults almost always misinterpret Genesis. However since then I have researched the Mormon religion more deeply and my initial assumptions were confirmed.
The ‘arranger’, not the creator
The Mormon church teaches that God did not create Ex Nihilo (from nothing) as the Bible clearly says (Hebrews 11:3). They say that matter is eternal and that the gods (even the original god they call ‘Heavenly Father’) arranged pre-existing ‘elements’ to form the world(s).
From the Church of Latter Day Saints’ own website by searching ‘Creation’ we read;
Under the direction of Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ created the heavens and the earth (see Mosiah 3:8; Moses 2:1). From scripture revealed through the Prophet Joseph Smith, we know that in the work of the Creation, the Lord organized elements that had already existed (see Abraham 3:24). He did not create the world “out of nothing”, as some people believe.6
This idea comes from Mormonism’s founding father Joseph Smith who also wrote;
Now the word create came from the word baurau, which does not mean to create out of nothing; it means to organize; the same as a man would organize materials and build a ship. Hence we infer that God had materials to organize the world out of chaos—chaotic matter, which is element, and in which dwells all the glory. Element had an existence from the time He had. The pure principles of element are principles which can never be destroyed; they may be organized and reorganized, but not destroyed. They had no beginning, and can have no end.7
So to put the Mormon’s proposed view of origins into a chronological sequence it would state;
- First there was matter (which always existed).
- This matter somehow produced the first man who grew in wisdom and became (the first) God.
- This God produced other humans.
- From these humans came other Gods.
Logical consequences …
Although most Mormons may not adhere to the following logical conclusions as their beliefs, this is ultimately a materialistic worldview that at its core is similar to atheism. For even if Mormonism teaches that there are gods (intelligent designers/arrangers), they are ultimately the result of some kind of an evolutionary process (matter produced a man who became a god).
This is similar to how many atheists are comfortable with the concept of ‘aliens’ perhaps seeding life on earth or that we may be the result of some sort of intelligent design, as long as that ‘designer’ resulted from some type of evolution. (This is what Richard Dawkins proposed as a possible answer to the potential of any sort of intelligent design being found in nature [not that he said he thought there was any evidence of this] in Ben Stein’s documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed.)
Interestingly, this evolutionary origin does not seem to be an explicit part of most Mormon teaching. It is rather as if it was simply never thought through. Although some modern Mormons seem open to evolutionary ideas, official Mormon teaching has been adamantly against it.
It is held by some that Adam was not the first man upon this earth and that the original human being was a development from lower orders of the animal creation. These, however, are the theories of men. There is nothing in this, however, to indicate that the original man, the first of our race, began life as anything less than a man.8
It is incumbent upon each informed and spiritually attuned person to help overcome such foolishness of men who would deny divine creation or think that man simply evolved. By the Spirit, we perceive the truer and more believable wisdom of God.9
The evolution of Mormon thought
However, some modern Mormon literature seems to have embraced mainstream evolutionary ideas. The book Evolution and Mormonism: A Quest for Understanding (2001)10 accepts wholeheartedly that Mormonism is completely compatible with biological evolution over millions of years due to ‘natural selection’. Although not the ‘official view’, recent articles regarding the age of the earth and evolution confirm that “mainstream scientific theories of evolutionary biology, old-earth geology and paleontology are openly taught at BYU and BYU-Idaho (Brigham Young University).”11
It is no wonder many Mormons are becoming comfortable with the idea of evolution (and even offshoots derived from it such as Transhumanism), as their core doctrines are completely compatible with such ideas. Hence arguments against evolution and a detailed examination of origins can be a real benefit when witnessing to Mormons as it forces them to confront some major inconsistencies in their belief system.
References and notes
- I have since learned that most Mormon missionaries are taught not to be so candid about admitting to what they believe about certain of their doctrines. This is especially true of their teaching that God was once a man and that men can become Gods. Watch Mormon leader Robert Millet train Mormon missionaries how not to answer those kinds of questions: youtube.com/watch?v=e3I6t3VodO4 Return to text.
- Spiritual Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 1938, pp. 345, 346, http://scriptures.byu.edu/tpjs/STPJS.pdf Return to text.
- The Hebrew has an even stronger force: “You will certainly not die.” Return to text.
- Bruce McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 669–70, 1966, Deseret Book Company, Bookcraft Inc, 1966 Return to text.
- Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Volumes 7-8, Intelligence, etc p. 289, 1860, Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses. Return to text.
- lds.org/topics/creation?lang=eng, (Updated 2/21/2012) Return to text.
- Teachings of Joseph Smith, pp. 350-352. Return to text.
- Improvement Era, 75–81 The Origin of Man, Joseph, F. Smith, John R. Winder, Anthon H. Lund, First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Nov. 1909, www.lds.org/ensign/2002/02/the-origin-of-man?lang=eng Return to text.
- The Magnificence of Man By Elder Russell M. Nelson Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, This is an edited version of a talk delivered at Brigham Young University on 29 March 1987, www.lds.org/ensign/1988/01/the-magnificence-of-man?lang=eng&query=evolution. Return to text.
- Stephens, T.D., Meldrum, D. J. and Peterson, F.B., Evolution and Mormonism: A Quest for Understanding, Signature Books, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2001. Return to text.
- Bailey, D.H., History of the LDS Church’s view on the age of the earth and evolution, www.sciencemeetsreligion.org/lds/lds-history-evolution.html, March 2010. Return to text.
As a believing "Mormon" (member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), faculty at the above-mentioned BYU-Idaho, and an avid supporter of CMI I would like to respond to this article.
It is true that the church's universities do teach the theory of biological evolution--as a theory. It is also true that many LDS members like to speculate about the meaning of the statements quoted here. , and have made no such statements as attributed to the two young men encountered by the author.
But I can state unequivocally that the thesis of the article--that evolution is LDS doctrine--is completely untrue. In fact, the glorious creation of God is central to our very temple worship. We believe that this world was created for God's children--each and every one of us--to come to earth, receive a physical body and have experiences which will help us to better understand and choose whether we will follow the Savior, Jesus Christ, or some other path.
While we disagree on other points of doctrine, please do not misrepresent my faith. I greatly appreciate Creation Ministries International, and hope you will keep up the good work. God bless you all.
Hi Michael, thank you for your email.
I did not state that evolution is LDS doctrine and even clarified by saying, "Although most Mormons may not adhere to the following logical conclusions as their beliefs..." etc.
As you pointed out, 'Qualified [LDS] church leaders have made it clear that we have very little understanding of what this means...'.
What I have pointed out here in my article is that Mormon doctrine is contradictory and that it could logically be rooted in a belief in evolution, even if that is not what LDS church leaders profess or teach.
I am sorry to see Creation.com veer off from its struggle against the evolutionists to launch a peevish attack on one of the religions which should be its ally in thwarting atheism. It even gives "aid and comfort" to the semi-atheists who are working hard to corrupt the Mormon religion from within. I prepared a two-page response to this article before I realized that there is an 1800-character limit on comment size. It seems that with such a distorted attack, it ought to also allow space for some responses. I have been happy to see Creation.com supporting, in some way, John C. Sanford's work on "genetic entropy," but apparently its goals and motives are more mixed than I might have guessed.
I am a Mormon who believes that God created the heavens and the earth and all things on it, more or less according to the account in the book of Genesis. I am not happy with the LDS Church's current ambiguity and general public tolerance for the topic of evolution.
I need to at least say that the group of Mormon biologists and evolutionists who wrote the cited book are certainly NOT representative of Mormon thinking on the topic, but are an aberration.
I seem to recall Ken Ham writing that most Baptist and evangelical universities teach evolution in their biology courses as at secular universities. This makes the comments about Mormonism and its current tolerance for evolution rather hollow.
There is really no practical difference between your claiming that God always existed, and our claiming that "Gods" always existed. The article derides the missionaries for the fact that "they couldn’t explain such a foundational issue (origins)," but I think it is extremely unlikely that you can explain your version of the origins of everything any better.
Hi Kent, thanks for your email.
You seem to have missed the main thrust of the article.
The issue of origins can be boiled down to 2 possibilities; eternal God that creates or eternal matter that creates.
An eternal God is not hard to defend for the Christian, see http://creation.com/who-created-god (something has to be eternal and creative).
Mormons claim that 'gods' always existed (Brigham Young, the second of the Mormon Church, stated that “There was never a time when there were not Gods and worlds, and men were not passing through the same ordeals that we are now passing through.”
But Joseph Smith said; I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was god from all eternity, I will refute that idea, and take away the veil, so that you may see.
'It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for certainty the character of God, to know that we may converse with Him as one man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us, yea that God Himself the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth the same as Jesus Christ did…'
So which was it, an eternal god that came from a man (which means he wasn't eternal) or a man that came from matter or a god before that?
And as I pointed out in another response the Book of Mormon, Moroni 8:8:18 says "For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity". How then can a man become a God if God is unchangeable? How could God once have been a man if he is unchangeable? If men need to change to become God these statements are contradictory. Knowingly contradicting your self is called lying, and God cannot lie. Therefore the Book of Mormon is false.
I hope this helps.
Thank you for your article. It has clarified a few things for me re Mormonism. When dealing with people enslaved by mind controlling sects like this I find that in order to free them you have to make a crack, a doubt, in their induced belief system. All heresies, all the sects, corrupt the Gospel of righteousness by faith. So I deal with our sinfulness first, usually readily admitted by them, and then show that before allowing us to enter God's eternal kingdom we must be perfect in his sight. His plan is to give us this perfect righteousness, to clothe us in Christ, through believing his promises. As it is a perfect righteousness, there is no 'work' we can add to it to render us more acceptably righteous in his sight. I take them through the early chapters of Romans and Ephesians and show that this "faith righteousness" is God's free gift to us because the life, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus has made this possible. They are often stunned by this because it undermines and destroys the whole basis of the cult's teaching. The gospel is the sledge hammer which cracks open all false teaching and allows the Holy Spirit to cleanse it from their minds. For me, origins comes next.
Good information, but I wondered as I read this about one important thing the author left out: typically, when you bring up something about the Book of Mormon lacking evidence or the errors of Mormonism, they retort with "faith." Did that not happen in this instance? If so, how did you deal with it?
Hi Jim, thanks for your email.
There is a difference between blind faith and justifiable faith, which I believe I pointed out to them with no reasonable response.
Interesting and informative as to what the Morman's believe. I have a lovely lady (Morman) as a neighbour and we talk easy on religion. But creation has not been discussed. Thank you for enlightening me on this subject.
You only need to take a cursory look at the reputation and character of John Smith to have alarm bells about mormonism ringing loudly.
I once had a mature age couple come to my door talking about mormonism - through the conversation I learned that they had sold their house and everything they owned to go and knock on doors all over the world. They seemed very genuine and sincere in their beliefs. Absolutely broke my heart to think of the deception these lovely people had been sold and what it will eventually cost them
One question I asked a Mormon friend that wasn't asked in this article is " if God was a man and became a god who created (assembled) the universe, where did he grow up as there wasn't any planet to live on"? His answer "that will be revealed". Which seems to be the standard answer to any question he could not get an answer to.
This article was very interesting and I also found Joseph Smith's use of the term element to be very interesting it turns out that Mormonism is simply a form of witch craft which is all about worship of and controlling the elements, what does the bible have to say about the elements?
Galations 4:9 But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?
Excellent article with much needed teaching in view of the current missionary thrust of the Mormon Church. Makes it clear how diametically opposed it is to the Christian faith. Praise the Lord, the eternal God became man - and not the other way about!
I just wanted to say your article is unfairly comparing the temporal concept of "evolution" with the spiritual concept of "eternal progression." Latter-Day Saints absolutely believe God took the dust of the earth and made man in His image. We do not believe we eventuated from sea slime. Where as we choose to use the words "organized" as well as "created" you choose to take offense and run all the way down the field on a false premis. If you are talking about our mortal beginnings then stick to the subject. If you want to talk about eternal progression (a spiritual concept and belief) then you are on the wrong page. Although we do believe we existed with our Heavenly Father in Spirit prior to this earthly probation your work has been focused on providing physical, tangible proof of the truthfulness of scripture and God's word and have not provided any "evidence" one way or the other regarding our "Spiritual" creation. So, at least on the subject of mortal man's beginning we agree scripture is very clear God made Adam and Eve as fully grown and capable adults--they (nor any other living thing) was made to sit and stew billions of years until they accidentally turned into something useful.
Hi again Trisha, I see you have identified yourself as a LDS.
Your objection here is a straw man, nowhere in my article did I say that official Mormon doctrine states humans/Adam and Eve evolved (biological evolution). I also did not confuse the word ‘organized’ with biological evolution which you have indicated I did (re-read my article).
What I pointed out is that the origins of the first man/god has evolutionary implications, and that Mormon doctrine cannot explain origins logically or scientifically (see my responses to Justin B and Steven T).
Also not that many Mormons do believe in evolution and Transhumanism as I pointed out in my article.
You indicated in your former letter that you have been exposed to many different religious ideas in your life. Only one can be truth because truth is exclusive. I pray that you would accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and His inerrant Word as your source of revealed truth to you. I respectfully ask you to please re-read the article and the responses I mentioned. Contradictions are not truth.
I knew that Mormonism believed that man becomes a god. I didn't know that they believed in a "first" god or that they believed matter was eternal. I hope that the seed you planted grows so that they will come to the True Faith that leads to Salvation.
Am I correct in saying that their "book of Moses" is not the Torah that was given to the Israelites, through Moses, in the wilderness?
Hi Timothy, thanks for your email.
One of my main points is that Mormonism is contradictory. Check out the other feedback responses to see how Mormon doctrine cannot explain first man/god.
I am pretty sure they would accept the Torah as having been given to Moses.
Really good article, but on just one point, I can see them coming back with a quote from the 2nd president, which says that there were gods before man.
He says that there never was a time when there wasn't any gods. So, if there was always "gods' then they could have made the first man.
This is the quote:
Brigham Young, the second prophet and president of the LDS Church, said, "How many Gods there are, I do not know. But there never was a time when there were not Gods..." (Journal of Discourses 7:333).
But I do have a really great quote that totally destroys their logic.
In this quote, they claim that there are more gods than there are particles in the earth, times a million. (Even if particles, to them, are not atoms, but just grains of sand this is impossible)
And if every god gets his own planet, (like their fundamental belief states) the universe would be elbow to elbow with earth size planets, which we don’t see. There aren’t even that many stars.
This is the quote:
“If we should take a million of worlds like this and number their particles,
We should find that there are more gods than there are particles of matter in those worlds.”
The Seer, Orson Pratt.
thanks for your great ministry. dom
See my response to Steven T.
Thanks for explaining many of the fundamental differences between Mormonism and Christianity. Let's hope these young men took the time to read and understand the Bible and refute the brainwashing they were brought up on.
about Dawkins in "Expelled":when reviewing the youtube recording, he postulated the panspermia idea and a god/"creator" who evolved elsewhere and said that such a being, after all, couldn't "spring from nothing." Yet, I'd think his entire philosophy requires the Universe springing from nothing.
Thank you, Calvin! What a fantastic article. I will definitely be asking these same questions the next time I have the opportunity to speak with 'missionaries' from this group.
I am dismayed with your attack on the LDS faith. You have offered me beautiful wisdom and truth regarding scientific evidence that has been sorely lacking through our schools and is generally ignored by the media due to the obvious implication that God lives and scriptures can be supported. I have relished every word of your articles and believed yours is an inspired work. That being said, why was it necessary to go off scinetific investigative findings and bash ANY church? And, since you are convinced the principles and doctrines of the LDS faith are not true, please tell me and the rest of your fans which Church actually does provide us with the absolute truth? I was raised a Baptist, but hardly recognize that faith (nor my mother's Methodist or father's Luthern Church either) all these many years later. My best friends were Catholic and were, when I was young, convinced ONLY the Catholic Church was true. But, since the sex scandals they have fallen away. And, although a few Churches are gaining in membership the fastest growing religion in the US and the world is Islam. So, besides alienating me as a subscriber and fan, why not throw a little dirt at all faiths and all Churches you disagree with and say right up front which Church you believe has the 100% truth so we know from whence you speak. Meanwhile, I would hope you understand that all the scientific proof in the world is not going to convert anyone because it is only by the testimony of the Holy Spirit (internally) that we "know" beyond a shadow of doubt that Christ is the Son of God (are there one or two "Gods?") and He, of His own free will, went to hell in our stead to pay for everyone's sins, and all He asked in return is that we do our best to pick up the cross and follow Him (works?).
Dear Trisha, thanks for your email.
I am a little surprised at how upset you seem over this article, as we often take others to task over what disagrees with God’s word.
For example, you state you like how our ministry has offered beautiful wisdom and truth regarding science which you enjoy. But in doing so we also attack the false, God opposing faith system of atheism and materialism. Why then are you opposed to us challenging certain types of faith systems but not others?
Any doctrine which is contradictory to Jesus’ teachings is a false Gospel, which the LDS profess. All of your objections seem to be of the emotional sort rather than biblical kind, or what can be logically deduced from Scripture.
You seem to indicate that we cannot know which church is ‘true’, but yet you say for example “… only by the testimony of the Holy Spirit (internally) that we ‘know’ beyond a shadow of doubt that Christ is the Son of God …”
But how do you know that is true? Did you get it from the Bible or is it just your own thoughts and ideas? If it is from your own mind then it is no more ‘true’ than what anyone else thinks (i.e. No absolute truth). If you know it is true because of what the Bible says then obviously we can know some things for certain because of what the Bible says. See Is there a universal way Christians should interpret the Bible?
Islam, Jehovah’s witnesses, atheism, pantheism, Buddhists, Mormons etc are all in error because they contradict the plain teaching of Scripture. I am a little surprised a Christian would criticize a ministry for standing up to error and pointing people to the God of the Bible and salvation through Jesus Christ.
Brigham Young, the second "prophet, seer, and revelator" of the Mormon Church, stated that “There was never a time when there were not Gods and worlds, and men were not passing through the same ordeals that we are now passing through.” That is, he asserted (and for all I know the official Mormon position still is) that there was no first man, no first planet -- a view reminiscent of Aristotle's view of an eternal, uncreated, unevolving (though going through geological and climate cycles) Earth and universe (and with some similarities, as well, to some Hindu cosmologies).
So on each world, there could have been a created Adam, with a god (small "g" to indicate that this is not the eternal, uncreated God) who created him and who had developed, in turn, from a man created (or descended from a man created) by a still earlier god, with no beginning.
Incidentally, while there are Mormon creationists, there are also Mormon theistic evolutionists (Mitt Romney, for one); it's been noted that a lot of Mormons, when they first realize the incompatibilities between the Book of Mormon and archaeology, embrace the joys of postmodernism and insist that the strict factual accuracy of the Book of Mormon is beside the point.
Hi Steven, thanks for your email.
You have helped highlight the problems I am demonstrating with Mormon doctrine, it is contradictory. As you pointed out, Brigham Young, the second prophet of the Mormon Church, stated that “There was never a time when there were not Gods and worlds, and men were not passing through the same ordeals that we are now passing through.” That is, he asserted that there was no first man, or God.
However, from my article we see Joseph Smith said; I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was god from all eternity, I will refute that idea, and take away the veil, so that you may see.
'It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for certainty the character of God, to know that we may converse with Him as one man converses with another, and that he was once a man like us, yea that God Himself the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth the same as Jesus Christ did…'
So was there a first man who became a god or a first god that came from a man? Or was there a god that became a god in a different way than the other gods?
I hope this lets everyone see the problem even more clearly.
"First there was matter (which always existed).
This matter somehow produced the first man who grew in wisdom and became (the first) God (who they call Heavenly Father and/or Elohim)."
This is false. Mormons do not believe this nor teach this. Neither is it the logical conclusion of their doctrine. For proof all you need to do is look to the hymn: If You Could Hie To Kolob. It says: "1. If you could hie to Kolob...
Do you think that you could ever,
Through all eternity,
Find out the generation
Where Gods began to be?"
2. "Or see the grand beginning,
Where space did not extend?
Or view the last creation,
Where Gods and matter end? ..."
3. "....There is no end to matter;
There is no end to space;
There is no end to spirit;
There is no end to race."
God was created by his father who was a savior to His brothers and sisters (see KJV John 5:19), and He was created by His father, and He by His father and so on. There was no grand beginning to creations only a beginning to the creations of our God. It is a cycle that has lasted for eternity and will never end.
Although this does not mean that God was created ex nihilo because God is eternal. Abraham 3:22 helps us to understand how this can be. It says: "Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones;" We were inteligences before spirits. The same goes for God.
By the same virtue as there was no beginning nor will there be an end to space, there was no beginning to the Plan of Salvation and there will be no end. By the same virtue as there is infinite amounts of Space there are infinite amounts of Gods.1 Cor 8:5-6
"As man now is, God once was. As God now is, man may be." - President Lorenzo Snow
Hi Justin, thanks for your email.
I have received many emails similar to yours illustrating the same points. However, I did make the statement that '...most Mormons may not adhere to the following logical conclusions...' in my article. So saying this is 'false' or that Mormons do not believe this or teach it is moot.
Mormons still cannot explain their belief in a so called infinite progression. If 'god' (who is eternal) was once a man, where did that man come from? There was either a 'first god' who was never a man or else there was a 'first man' who became a god.
To propose that God is eternal is fine (that is what Christians believe based on the scriptures) while materialists must propose that matter is eternal, but if LDS teaching says that all gods came from men then logically they must deal with where that man came from in the first place as man is finite and cannot be eternal. And the only logical game in town is evolution which many Mormons are embracing.
Another huge challenge for the Mormon faith is what you quoted; "As man now is, God once was. As God now is, man may be." - President Lorenzo Snow
In the Book of Mormon, Moroni 8:8:18 says "For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity". How then can a man become a God if God is unchangeable? How could God once have been a man if he is unchangeable? If men need to change to become God these statements are contradictory. Knowingly contradicting your self is called lying, and God cannot lie. Therefore the Book of Mormon is false.
Postulating eternal matter is another huge challenge as matter is subject to the laws of entropy (see http://creation.com/who-created-god). The universe is running down and it cannot have been running down forever, or it would have already run down. No stars would be still churning out energy and we would not be here.
Some have proposed one universe giving birth to another, but again, there cannot be an infinite series of such births and deaths, as each cycle must have less energy available than the last and if this had been happening for eternity, the death of everything would have already happened.
To escape into statements like 'it's a mystery' is not an apologetic as it defies the law of non contradiction and the observed laws of science.
I hope this helps you and other readers understand how bankrupt the Mormon faith is, regardless of how kind and sincere any of them may be. This subject has eternal consequences to it and I did not write this article with any malicious intent but in the hopes that Jesus will draw many into His kingdom.
Thank you. Simple to understand, and well presented. Very informative in exposing the sadness and emptiness of the Mormon religion of works.
Mormonism, like Jehovah's Witnesses and other cults and manmade religions, is false, based on the lie of the serpent. Having read the link to transhumanism which Mormons seem to embrace, one could conclude this to be the apostate religion of the antichrist who will appear in the Tribulation. Us Christians are in for a battle-even if the ultimate victory is ours, there are skirmishes to be won-rearguard action to be defended. As Adam and Eve found out to their sorrow, there is no way man can become god-thank the true God for that!