An elderly woman I knew in Covington, Tennessee in 1975, who had spent over 70 years as a member of the LDS Church, once told me that her belief in "a" was, to her, sufficient in fulfilling her commitment to the deity that she worshipped. You will notice that I said in the previous sentence 'a' Jesus, instead of the one, and only, Jesus. This distinction will become clear as I proceed further into this essay. This octogenarian woman was a member, in full fellowship, of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but also devoutly believed in the doctrines of Mormonism that originated with Joseph Smith and Brigham Young during the 19th Century; the doctrines that the prophecies and apostles of the late-20th Century Mormon Church regarded as, either, nonexistent or the creations of heretics. She had read, studied, and fully believed, as Mormon doctrine and scripture, what Joseph Smith had declared in the King Follett Discourse, in 1844, and fully believed that what Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, Orson Pratt, and John Taylor had declared during 19th Century LDS General Conferences, which was recorded in the Journal of Discourses, was, as much, divine scripture as what any 20th century apostle or prophet had said. She had smoked broadly when she described her heavenly father as Adam, and dropped out a very old Mormon hymnal that contained Eliza R. Snow's original hymn, "Oh, My Father." She showed me the lyrics that went, "Oh, my father Adam, that that dwells in a high and holy place." The hymn was changed by the Mormon Church, to expunge the word "Adam" around 1912. This should not have been done, she had said reprovingly. She also said that the Mormon Church should not have been accused to embrace what Joseph Smith had revealed in 1844, that the Mormon father god, Adam, is a resurrected exalted man, who biologically fattered Jesus Christ. "So, Jesus was not born of a virgin?" I had asked, and heard her respond that, "Jesus was born just like you and me, and became a god.
Then I asked her the poignantly perturbing, if not unanswerable, question about Mormon theology that caused her to grow silent in thought for more than a few minutes. "If every Mormon god, who peoples an earth, has to be born biologically, die, and then be resurrected, how did the very first Mormon god come to exist?" "You know," she replied, "that's the first time anyone has ever asked me that. . " Well, the woman died three weeks later from pneumonia, before she could provide an answer for me. Yet, never have I been given a reasonable answer to this poignant question by any Mormon man or woman.
This is why I continue to insure that Mormon theology just does not make any sense. First of all, it is not biblical to any degree. Mormon apologists try to make it biblical by using Jesus as an example of an ordinary biological birth. These sophists do not believe their own dogma when they insist that the Spirit that inhabited the tiny body of the infant Jesus was not the Word, or Jehovah, the God of the Old Testament, who appeared to Moses in the burning bush, who presided over the Childfren of Israel in the wilderness. Mormon doctrine states very clearly that every mortal who is born on earth receives a mature spirit that has been spiritually procreated by the Mormon father god to inhabit his or her body. The Mormon apologists, those professional illusionists, do not really have a biblical explanation for their theology about Jesus except the biblical scripture, Luke 2:52, that states that Jesus "grew up in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man;" but they, apparently, do not realize that Jesus, when he was born, was entirely mortal and surely God, and he was God, he had to learn how to manage and use his growth mortal body, since he had been a Spirit until his mortal birth.
When he was a small child, Jesus was protected by his eternal Father through the ministry of angels. Then, later, when he fully realized the identity of his real father, when he was 12 years of age, he had said to the scribes in the Jerusalem Temple that "I must be about my Father's business." The first miracle performed by Jesus, according to the New Testament, was the turning of the water into wine at the Cana marriage. After that time, Jesus used his powers, as God and as a man, to show his glory, and to defend himself in his ministry, until it was time for him to offer himself up as the perfect sacrifice for sin. Yet, continuously, he made it very plain that if he asked his father for anything, it would be given to him. The Mormons want you to believe, however, that Jesus was not "a" God until he was crucified on the cross and was resurrected. The polytheism of Mormon godhood completely does away with the biblical Trinitarian application of the one God interpreting the Father, the Word or the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Mormons would have you to believe that there are two (2) gods, Jehovah (Jesus) and Eloheim (the father), who reside, each in a resurrected body, on a celestial sphere near a planet called Kolob, and one (1 ) god, the Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit, who resides on the earth. In addition to these three Mormon gods, there exists, according to Joseph Smith, a council of gods, somewhere in the cosmos, which approves the ordination of resurrected Mormon men who seek to attain godhood. This adds very much to the Mormon theological concept of polytheism.
Yet, the whole Mormon theology falls completely apart when the theo-genesis (or beginning) of the very first Mormon god is examined. The fundamental issue is a question of which entity actually came first. Was it the chicken or the egg? If the egg came first, someone had to procreate it, and if the chicken came first, someone, or some deity, had to create it out of nothing for it to procreate an egg. So, if the unalterable requirement for Mormon godhood is death, death, and resurrection, there had to have been a spiritual unmoved mover (a term coined anciently by Aristotle) who was not created, but preexisting, such as the biblical God who, as a Spirit, had no beginning and has no end, and is from everlasting to everlasting. So, you see, Mormon theology, when reduced to its empirical parts, clries out for clarity and definition when its basic hydraulic premium is unsupported and unsupportable. In the end result, the biblical infinite God of heaven and earth is proven true, and the Mormon exalted man god a bunch of malarkey.
Now, the clincher about the real Mormon regard for Jesus Christ. The Mormon Church actually believes, and maintains, that every mortal man who attains Mormon godhood will eventually become an exalted-man father god. This has been taught in Mormon priesthood meetings since 1851. This was, and is, based upon their stalwart belief in the Adam-God Doctrine which was the theology of Mormonism for over 45 years in the Salt Lake Valley, from 1851 until around 1905. Especially after 1877, after the Adam-God Doctrine was placed into the Mormon temple rite and called the "Lecture before the Veil" by Brigham Young just before the dead, the Mormon prophets, up to and including Joseph Fielding Smith, accepted, during their own temple sessions, that Adam was the Mormon heavenly father, and Eve the Mormon heavenly mother, who, together, had procreated all of the spirit children who had lived, and will live, in mortal bodies upon the earth. These Mormon apostles and prophets believed that Adam, their heavenly father, was the resurrected exalted man god who presided over them with Eve, one of his celestial wives, and that, as he, the father god, had produced a son, 'a' savior, of sorts, named Jesus, to serve as the appointed Christ of this world, every Mormon man, according to Mormon doctrine, will produce 'a' Jesus with probably another name, to serve as a savior for every world that they organize and procreate.
The Mormons fully believe, as doctrine and scripture. that the Jesus of this world is merely "another" savior, in the long line of saviors, for just another Mormon world. Moreover, in the maze of Mormonism, the salvation that Jesus provides is purely a salvation from physical death, or redemption from the physical deathrought by Adam upon manankind through his "transgression" in the Garden of Eden. You see, Mormon doctrine teachers that Jesus' death on the cross has nothing to do with getting to heaven. They believe that since "all" mannish will be resurrected through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus, it, the resurrection, alone, is the only gift offered by Jesus Christ. Getting to heaven (being able to retreat with the Mormon exalted man father god and the Mormon Jesus for eternity), on the other hand, involuntarily working continuously and repenting, repeatedly, to gain one of the four degrees of Mormon heavenly glory (telestial, terrestrial, celestial, and exaltation) after death. In essence, the Mormons do not believe in hell as a punishment for wicked humans. Hell, described by Jesus in the Bible, to Mormons is strictly reserved for Satan, his large band of angels (who were cast out of heaven to the earth by Adam (Eloheim) before Adam, the resurrected Mormon father god, placed himself as the first mortal man in the Garden of Eden with his wife Eve) and mortal men and women who become "sons of perdition," or commit the unpardonable sin (which is, supposedly, denial of the Holy Ghost). Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, and John Taylor, the first three Mormon prophets, all said that the "sons of perdition" were so few that they could be counted on the fingers of one hand. Furthermore, in the convolution of Mormon doctrine, the conduct of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden (disobeying God and eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) was doctrinally not sinful to any degree. Mormons, during their temple rite, extol Adam and Eve for doing what they were expected to do in order to obtain physical bodies in order to multiply and replenish the earth. This is why Mormon doctrine refers to what Adam and Eve did in the Garden of Eden as a transgression, not a sin. According to Mormonism, they broke the law because they were expected by the Mormon god to do so, so that the human race could be procreated. This also shows the pragmatism of Mormonism, in that the end result justifies the means used to achieve it.
After having participated in over two hundred sessions of the Mormon endowment ceremony, from 1973 through 2000, in the Los Angeles, Seattle, and Washington, DC Mormon Temples, I can tell you that the New Testament scripture, found in James 4:17 , became increasingly true to me; "Therefore to him that knows to do good, and does it not, to him it is sin." According to the liturgy of the Mormon temple endowment ceremony, Adam, and Eve, both realized that what they were doing was not in accordance with the Mormon god's commandment to not eat of the forbidden fruit. So, by understanding that what they were doing was wrong, or not good, Adam and Eve sinned when they disobeyed the commandment. By trivializing such an act of disobedience as something that "normally" occurs in the course of a Mormon exalted man god's organization of a world, the true purpose of the Lord Jesus Christ, as the only perfect sacrifice for the sins of mankind, is tragicly denigrated. Therefore, you can now see what the elderly Mormon woman meant, when she told me that "a" Jesus was, to her, sufficient in fulfilling her commitment to her deity.
Mormonism is, in many ways, like the convoluted doctrines of Rosicrucian cosmo-conception. You only learn of its "real" doctrines by fully studying its complex, but absolutely flawed, theology, which in the case of Rosicrucianism is fully available (since Rosicrucians are proud of their theology and doctrines and hide nothing from the potential disciple of Rosicrucianism) , and when you do study it, you immediately realize the reality of its ties with paganism and polytheism, which fiercely jumps out at you. The Mormon full-time and ward missionaries who are always actively seeking new convert blood for the continuation of Mormon Church growth will never tell investigators of Mormonism about its real theology. They will allow the new convert to find these things out only after they commit themselves to Mormonism through baptism. They will lie to you, ether ignorantly or kindly, about the LDS acceptance of the Book of Mormon as a fundamental basis for LDS doctrine; and as you read its fictional story you will discover that it tells about a God who does not change, and is from everlasting to everlasting. It even describes God as a Trinitarian spirit, and tells that Jesus was born of a virgin. In fact, if you disregard its purely fictional storyline, most of the biblical Christian principles that it contains could have been essentially taught from the pulpit of a Methodist church.
While the Mormon missionaries will insist that the Book of Mormon is the keystone of Mormonism, it actually tells nothing at all about the Mormon god that Joseph Smith produced in minority increments after 1835, and which he proclaimed, and described in full in 1844, in Nauvoo, Illinois, during an official conference of the Mormon Church. The missionaries will tell you nothing about the Mormon Melchizadek priesthood holders' obligation to strive to become equal to, or greater than, their Mormon exalted man father god, with a capital 'G,' in order to be proclaimed resurrected Mormon deities and to organize , not create, their own earths and to procreate spirit children for all of the mortal man and women born upon those earths. You will find out about the theology of Mormonism only after you have been mesmerized into accepting everything that Joseph Smith and Brigham Young produced in Mormonism as revelation, doctrine, and scripture from the Mormon father god. All Mormon ward bishops, ward mission leaders, ward missionaries, and ward high priest group leaders will assure you that every aspect of Mormon theology is only the continuing revelation received by Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, and is to be accepted in the way in which Joseph Smith interpreted the Bible, which was totally wrong and utter Chrisatian heresy.
Most converts to Mormonism are people much like another woman I currently know, who has been a member of the LDS Church for around eight years. This woman could not believe what she was reading when I showed her, from the standard 1984 Melchizadek Priesthood Study Guide (Lesson 21, "Man May Become like God) the principles of Mormon theology taken directly from the King Follett Discourse, which all men holding , or preparing to hold, the high Mormon priesthood are expected to know and understand. As most unendowed Mormons (those who have not participated in the temple endowment ceremony), she had never heard of the King Follett Discourse, nor its principles. in this particular case study guide is included, in one form or another, in all Melchizadek Priesthood study guides because Mormons regard the required steps to Mormon godhood as commands. ; so, every scripture and principle referred and advanced in this study guide, and all study guides, is considered as what is expected by the Mormon god.
Most folks, especially collegiate academics who regard themselves as Mormon historians, can not really understand why, if the King Follett Discourse and Adam-God Doctrine were sacred scriptures to the LDS Church during the 19th Century, the doctrines, and scriptures supporting them were not promulgated during the 20th Century as were the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Book of Abraham. I will try to explain this in the most simplistic way that I know. When the Mormons, as a church, were isolated from the Christian mainstream American society in the Salt Lake Valley, between 1850 and around 1898, they did not have to fear negative reactions from Christian churches in the United States when they practiced their unchristian heresies. They practiced their religion in much the same way that the Native Americans did before the advent of the white European, who rarely regarded their tribal customs and rituals as pagan in nature. The presiding Mormon hierarchy in Salt Lake City knew that they could not enter the mainstream Christian community after the annexation of Utah as a state unless they represented themselves fundamentally as Christian, even though they were not. Even though the Mormon prophets and apostles still fully believed in polygamy, the doctrines of the King Follett Discourse, and the Adam-God Doctrine, they specifically determined referring to those scriptures, doctrines, and orders by their official designations. As proof of the exclusive political purpose for making it appear that the peculiar unchristian doctrines of Mormonism were no longer believed and practiced, the Mormon proclamation about the cessation of polygamy is an example. Nowhere in the 1890 proclamation issued by Mormon Prophet Wilford Woodruff concerning polygamy is there a, "thus saith the lord" statement by Woodruff to indicate that it was a revelation, and decree, from the Mormon god instead of a political statement from the presiding Mormon leaders.
As a matter of record, all of those doctrines and scripts remained intact and were published in evidence study guides without referring to their original sources, and the presiding Mormon hierarchy (the LDS First Presidency) made it illusively appear that nothing was formally scripture except what was contained in the LDS four standard works, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, the Book of Abraham, and the Bible. As far as celestial polygamy was concerned, Mormon Melchizadek Priesthood holders could still be married, in the Mormon temple, to more than one woman. As long as the existing wife is dead, a Mormon man may be married to as many women, one at a time over time, as will accept his proposal of marriage, and those wives will, supposedly, be sealed to him in Mormon exaltation after their death. Here, the declaration about the cessation of Mormon plural marriage in the Mormon temples only changed the doctrine of celestial marriage on the earth. A Mormon man may only be married to one celestial wife at one time, but it did not restrict how many celestial wives a Mormon man could collect, in different marriages, during a lifetime.
Furthermore, if the Book of Abraham is read contextually, it will clearly reveal the polytheism embraced by the Mormon Church, and its real pagan origins, since the proper translation of the Joseph Smith Papyri, in 1969, was rendered by the world's most eminent Egyptianologist , Dr. Klaus Baer. The Egyptian Papyri from which the Book of Abraham was supposedly written had nothing at all to do with Abraham, but was a part of the Egyptian Book of Breathings, a pagan funerary text standardly used by Egyptian practices to send Egyptian dead to the next world. As such, new converges to the Mormon Church are told very little about the Book of Abraham. They find the truth about it for them a few years later, usually from the Internet. Further, the mystery de-emphasis of Doctrine and Covenants 68: 1-5 gave the Mormon Church plausible deniability in dealing with their critics who claimed that they never stopped relating to the 19th Century doctrines of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young as revelation and scripture. In a nutshell, after realizing that Mormon theology is nothing but blatant Christian heresy, every doctrine and every scripture that has been produced by the Mormon Church, in its 184 years of existence, may be considered by the honest Christian as not originating with the real Lord Jesus Christ, and anyone following such heresy is advocating the doctrines of devils.