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SettingDogStar

God ceasing to be God

God Can Cease To Be God  

16 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you think God could in theory cease to be God?

    • Yes! He has agency so He could possible do so
      11
    • NO!! To think so is a heresy.
      4
    • Something in between?!
      1


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On LDSfreedom forum another user and I were at odds about this doctrine. I believe that God has the ability to change if He wanted to, but that He never will. The other user claimed that it was impossible for Him to change and thus that is why we could have faith in Him.

What do you think?

Some verses to consider in favor and in against;

FOR:

--If justice were destroyed, God would cease to be God, Alma 42:13, 22–23, 25

--If God changed, he would cease to be God, Morm. 9:19. 

--King Follet Sermon

AGAINST:

James 1:13
13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

James 1:17
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

1 John 1:5
5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

God is the same yesterday, today and forever. 

1 Nephi 10:18
18 For he is the same yesterday, today, and forever; and the way is prepared for all men from the foundation of the world, if it so be that they repent and come unto him.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, SettingDogStar said:

On LDSfreedom forum 

30028098.jpg

 

I am not convinced that the “God would cease to be God” verses were meant to be literal descriptions of God’s choices. I think they were meant to show the absurdity of a position.

Could God fall? In theory maybe but only in the same way humans could theoretically be justified by their works alone if they never sinned or that devils and those consigned to perdition could repent.

I think the idea relies on an idealistic view of human agency that you can always choose. This is mostly true for us. God, though, sees the end from the beginning and can see the misery if He were to choose to fall and thus never will. Others go to the extreme the other way and argue that God therefore cannot choose at all as there is only one right choice in every situation. This I reject completely. Evil and misery block off choices. The distinctions between devils are probably minuscule if they exist at all. The differences between the exalted flourish in different and wonderful ways. You can see this to a lesser extent in this life. The wicked vary themselves superficially but they are all samey. The truly virtuous and charitable are all different in how they exercise those attributes.

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Just now, The Nehor said:

Could God fall? In theory maybe but only in the same way humans could theoretically be justified by their works alone if they never sinned or that devils and those consigned to perdition could repent.

I agree most with this. I'm thinking in theory not necessarily an actual possibility. Humans could be justified by their works if they were literally perfect, but it simple won't happen.

Also I almost spat out my soda reading the Yoda quote.

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If you say that God could not possibly cease to be God suggests that God has no choice, and no power to cease to be Himself.  Is God not then NOT omnipotent?  Can God make an object so massive that not even He could lift it?  If all things are possible with God, why cannot God retire and leave the God business?  If He is constrained to remain and has no choice in the matter, how then can He be God?

I think we do not understand the full nature of God.

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If God failed, that would be a terrible day.

 

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13 hours ago, SettingDogStar said:

On LDSfreedom forum another user and I were at odds about this doctrine. I believe that God has the ability to change if He wanted to, but that He never will. The other user claimed that it was impossible for Him to change and thus that is why we could have faith in Him.

What do you think?

Considering the plan of happiness, I’d say we have faith in Him because He had faith in us first (similar to 1 John 4: 17-19), and not because He is perfect – though perfect He most certainly is, even if only as far as we are concerned in our lowly sphere.

Can He ever decide to become imperfect within His sphere, a place that is far beyond that which we can now comprehend? Sounds suggestive of Adam-God… 😊

Justice, judgement, etc. have different meanings. When I think of the “work of justice” as the “work of rulership” we cannot become God, nor could He have become God, without Someone embracing Moses 1:39 and ruling to that degree. The work of rulership involves the integration of law, justice (in the sense of neutrality, fairness and equality) and mercy.  I think without developing the attributes of Moses 1:39, we cannot become God, and He would not have become God either. Without our embracing Moses 1:39, He is no longer our God (ceases to be God) in a sense because we cannot become like Him with such an attitude, and so we would cease to be like Him, or ever able to be gods ourselves.

I think it helps to think about this in terms of past, present and future as concurrent and not conditional upon each other at some level, or even relative to each other on some level.

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Could a nightingale stop being a nightingale? Or could a man stop being a man? (Yeah, I know in today's world all things are possible, but it does not matter what you wear or even, what you cut off, you are still male) 

I don't quite understand this type of navel gazing. No, God cannot stop being God. It is not heresy to consider such a thing, but it has all the value of toe jam. 

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30 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

No, God cannot stop being God.

Why not?  He started at some point.

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26 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

Why not?  He started at some point.

Can someone choose not to be God (which by definition means perfect and good) without becoming imperfect and bad?  Can God choose to be imperfect?  (I have no idea myself).

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4 hours ago, Stargazer said:

If you say that God could not possibly cease to be God suggests that God has no choice, and no power to cease to be Himself.  Is God not then NOT omnipotent?  Can God make an object so massive that not even He could lift it?  If all things are possible with God, why cannot God retire and leave the God business?  If He is constrained to remain and has no choice in the matter, how then can He be God?

I think we do not understand the full nature of God.

God’s power does not cover doing the intrinsically impossible. My favorite example is: Can God microwave a burrito so hot that not even he could eat it? However, that comes down to verbal nonsense. It is like asking if God can create a being with free will and also control them completely? Or can God create something out of hydrogen that contains no hydrogen at all? Claiming that God should be able to do something because we stick words together illogically is not a slight to God’s power. It is just communicating badly.

God could presumably retire or give up Godhood but we begin to mess with realities we do not understand. We believe in a God of parts and passions who has glory and joy and the foreknowledge of its increase. What motive would tempt God to abandon that joy.

Then again we are dabbling in realities beyond our comprehension. I believe in a physical God that I will one day literally embrace and that he is human.....more human then any of us but I do not understand that state. I do not know what it would be like to experience omniscience or to command the elements. I do know that part of God’s work and glory is to exalt us but what else does He do? If (as I believe) our desires and appetites and sensuous enjoyments are shadows of those of the divine what do the exalted feast on? What art do they create to gladden themselves? What do they do for thrills? How do they seek novelty? What gives them satisfaction in accomplishment? I suspect there that part of the joy the exalted experience is the loss of ego in the sense that each individual can experience joy in each others accomplishments and experiences as if they were their own. We see this a bit in life when we can rejoice in the successes of our family and friends with little to no sense of envy. What experiences do they give their bodies to enjoy? Erotic experiences? Sensuous delights? Things that make my love of watching, smelling, and experiencing the ocean (probably one of my favorite pleasures) seem drab and dull I am sure. Or do they have those same pleasures but can experience it more fully? I also suspect that the loss of ego will multiply these pleasures 

I have mentioned here and even gave a sacrament meeting talk about some of my plans for the next life. My pet dinosaur, riding dolphins, my plan to have a dance party at an exploding star, my all ocean planet I want to ride a wave around, the games I want to amuse myself with, my plans to create a tree that grows steak so I can enjoy that pleasure. I have no idea if all this will appeal there but if it does the joys of it will be beyond my comprehension and if those no longer appeal it is because there are greater experiences and joys I cannot see and there will be the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost and legions of others to teach it all to us with the same delight we will feel. I sometimes wonder if the infinite progression of exaltation is designed partially (definitely not exclusively) for the eternally shared joy of arriving. I am never more in awe of a spectacle or experience then when my niece or nephew is next to me excited to death over it. I could be wrong but I have gotten little tastes of heaven throughout my life and am confident it is all worth it.

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15 hours ago, SettingDogStar said:

On LDSfreedom forum another user and I were at odds about this doctrine. I believe that God has the ability to change if He wanted to, but that He never will. The other user claimed that it was impossible for Him to change and thus that is why we could have faith in Him.

What do you think?

Some verses to consider in favor and in against;

FOR:

--If justice were destroyed, God would cease to be God, Alma 42:13, 22–23, 25

--If God changed, he would cease to be God, Morm. 9:19. 

--King Follet Sermon

AGAINST:

James 1:13
13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:

James 1:17
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

1 John 1:5
5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

God is the same yesterday, today and forever. 

1 Nephi 10:18
18 For he is the same yesterday, today, and forever; and the way is prepared for all men from the foundation of the world, if it so be that they repent and come unto him.

 

 

It's almost non Christian to think that He could!

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

It's almost non Christian to think that He could!

Why? Who is the gatekeeper to decide that?

In any case I define it as impossible. I suspect in the eternal worlds the distinction of “God could but never would” is seen as something to laugh at, a funny nonsensical absurdity only a naive mortal could imagine has meaning.

Edited by The Nehor

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1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

Why not?  He started at some point.

Can you stop being a man?

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11 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

Why? Who is the gatekeeper to decide that?

In any case I define it as impossible. I suspect in the eternal worlds the distinction of “God could but never would” is seen as something to laugh at, a funny nonsensical absurdity only a naive mortal could imagine has meaning.

I believe that God is an entity that cannot be put inside a box. I think for the most part the world has no comprehension of Him at all. It's beyond our capabilities. We can try, but it's impossible to imagine, IMO.

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4 hours ago, rodheadlee said:

If God failed, that would be a terrible day.

 

 

For every spirit which is tried beyond their ability to endure, who is unjustly treated, who is not supported and educated as they need, who is not refined and uplifted - for every spirit who does not make it to the celestial kingdom... indeed, a terrible day.

@changed, please stop posting off topic remarks on threads.

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4 minutes ago, changed said:

 

For every spirit which is tried beyond their ability to endure, who is unjustly treated, who is not supported and educated as they need, who is not refined and uplifted - for every spirit who does not make it to the celestial kingdom... indeed, a terrible day.

There is no spirit who will be unjustly treated, who will not be supported or educated, who will not be given the opportunity to be refined and uplifted.  That is the beauty and marvel of the plan of salvation and the Atonement of Christ as taught in the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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25 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

I believe that God is an entity that cannot be put inside a box. I think for the most part the world has no comprehension of Him at all. It's beyond our capabilities. We can try, but it's impossible to imagine, IMO.

Then we cannot truly worship such a being or love Him.

6 minutes ago, changed said:

For every spirit which is tried beyond their ability to endure, who is unjustly treated, who is not supported and educated as they need, who is not refined and uplifted - for every spirit who does not make it to the celestial kingdom... indeed, a terrible day.

Please stop hurting yourself with this resentment and hatred. It does not have to continue.

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5 hours ago, rodheadlee said:

If God failed, that would be a terrible day.

I believe it is GUARANTEED not to happen.  I have read scriptures that say God can see all of time.  I think God chose the most brilliant intelligences and invited them to become spirit children.  Jesus was the Firstborn of the spirits in the pre-existence because He was chosen and God could see into time and determine that Jesus would be valiant and faithful in every particular.

There is something I call "The Law of Eternal Justice."  It requires every preparation for starting another implementation of The Plan of Happiness (there are successive Eternal Rounds).  The Creation, the establishment of the Garden of Eden, placing of Adam and Eve, etc would not have been allowed to proceed IF it was not verified that a Savior was provided that will carry out the infinite demands of the Atonement (God could see into the Meridian of Time to confirm the actual fulfilment of this critical requirement).

It is necessary for "candidates" to go through trials, testing and refiners fire before we can be trusted with taking on the serious responsibilities of office of Godhood.  The biggest qualifiers are to have tremendous capacity for loving others, being selfless and never violating the rights of the new "generation" of spirits.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, bluebell said:

Can someone choose not to be God (which by definition means perfect and good) without becoming imperfect and bad?  Can God choose to be imperfect?  (I have no idea myself).

I’m pretty sure in theory He could. He obviously won’t because His knowledge essentially prevents Him from doing so, but He has that choice. If you know the pan is hot then you never touch it again. Plus He’s aware of all pans, how hot they are, and the very science of heat so it becomes essentially impossible for Him to fail unless He chose to.

Edited by SettingDogStar
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Just now, SettingDogStar said:

I’m pretty sure I’m theory He could. He obviously won’t because His knowledge essentially prevents Him from doing so but He has that choice.

Maybe.  But God is a definition of a person and not just our Heavenly Father.  Can a canary choose to be a fish? No, because if he could, it would mean he was never actually a canary in the first place.  Can a perfect being choose to be imperfect?  I think you could argue no, because if he could, it would mean that he was never actually a perfect being in the first place.  

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I think if we say God could NOT choose to fail we would deny His omnipotence and make Him an automan with no agency.

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2 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Maybe.  But God is a definition of a person and not just our Heavenly Father.  Can a canary choose to be a fish? No, because if he could, it would mean he was never actually a canary in the first place.  Can a perfect being choose to be imperfect?  I think you could argue no, because if he could, it would mean that he was never actually a perfect being in the first place.  

No, but God did become God so if you can become it then it is in theory possible to undo that. It’s essentially impossible that it will ever happen but technically the choice exists. 

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Obviously as a side note this al doesn’t really matter haha as long as we have Faith in Christ and His attributes then it doesn’t matter so much about any of these things. I just like the fun thought experiment!! 😅

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, SettingDogStar said:

No, but God did become God so if you can become it then it is in theory possible to undo that. It’s essentially impossible that it will ever happen but technically the choice exists. 

Again, maybe.  I became an adult but there is no theory where it is possible to undo that.  It is a change that cannot be unchanged.  My fundamental nature was altered in such a way that there is literally no going back.   :pardon: 

Edited by bluebell

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14 minutes ago, SettingDogStar said:

I think if we say God could NOT choose to fail we would deny His omnipotence and make Him an automan with no agency.

I disagree. The richness of virtue allows for many avenues and choices for the exalted. Not all choices are between good and evil. I am not challenging Lehi and his thoughts on agency and being enticed by both sides and thus able to choose is very accurate in this life. I doubt it is the same amongst the exalted.

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