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Mormonism and the Trinity


Daniel Peterson

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Dr Dan,

I agree that the concept of Trinity/Godhead need not separate us from other Christians. I think one of the biggest problems is that Mormons use religious language differently than everyone else.

It's been noted that many Mormons do not describe the Trinity in a form that Trinitarians can agree with. Recently for example, on one LDS website run by the More Good Foundation, described the Godhead. The author then explained the Trinity, describing it in LDS terms: that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost were "one person." I had to request that they correct the error, as some comments on the page from traditional Christians showed they were upset to not have their belief correctly explained. IOW, the use of the word "person" is different between LDS and traditional Christians.

The same goes with the word "salvation." So many Church leaders over the years have equated salvation with exaltation, that some members consider the Telestial and Terrestrial Kingdoms as a form of mild to severe punishment from God for not accepting the fullness. When asked, "are you saved?", how many LDS can quickly and firmly state, "yes!"?

We will do a better job of approaching our traditional Christian brethren, when we begin to use their language to describe our beliefs. We also will do a better job when we stop calling the Trinitarian belief a terrible apostate belief. Using such strong terms does not help us.

I prefer to call the Godhead a social Trinity, as do many traditional Christian scholars.

Of course, I also think we can reach more traditional Christians, if we also tell explain to them that we believe in a form of Open View Theology, where God is the "most moved mover." This belief is beginning to catch hold in many traditional Christian circles today, and agrees with many of our views.

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We believe that there is one supreme being, Deity, God, Who is God above all, by comparison to Whom there is â??no other Godâ? (Moses 1:6). We also believe that the highest form of salvation that God can bestow on mankind entails their deification, hence there are also â??many gods;â? but they receive their exaltation and deification by grace from Him, and He remains the supreme Deity above all. Hence in one sense of the term there is only one God, who is the Father; and in another sense more than one god.

As regards the verses in the Book of Mormon in which Jesus is referred to as the Father, the Church has already given the answer to that question with which I presume you are already familiar. There are several ways in which Jesus can be called the Father: Father as creator (Mosiah 3::P; Father as Savior, Redeemer, giver of life (D&C 25:1; 34:3; 76:24); and Father because He â??gave [Him] of His fullnessâ? (D&C 93:4).

Now, so far in all the discussions I have had with you, you have skirted round the edges, and have not got down to the real business of the debate. Instead of sneaking around and being evasive, why donâ??t you get to the bottom line, and tell us exactly what it is in LDS theology that you are actually objecting to, and why?

Hi Z,

I haven't skirted anything, we are discussing the nature of God, and I have been trying to get you to tell me how many Gods LDS believe there are along with their roles? We would just go in circles if we debate without first defining what we believe in terms we both understand...fair?

I'm am still trying to qualify your belief on the role of these gods such as creation of the earth, will you concede that LDS theology demands that while all things were created through Christ that all things were also created by a pantheon or group of gods as the BOA relates?From my earliest memories of being born and raised in the church I was taught that the council of God chose Jehovah's plan and made him savior and then later I learned that they, the gods as in the BOA, created the world. This is important to our conversation and establishing what we really believe the nature of God is and his role/s. This conversation will switch gears and I will answer any question you like on what I believe and why I believe it.

On your statement..." We believe that there is one supreme being, Deity, God, Who is God above all, by comparison to Whom there is â??no other Godâ? .

Unless that statement is exclusive to just this earth, I would disagree with that and there is no real precedence that I am aware of from actual LDS authoritative teachings that would back that up, can you give a CF on that, and if so explain how this works with the Eternal law of Progression which of course demands that God became God by following strict adherence to certain eternal laws. Elohim became God by this path according to authoritative LDS teachings, and he had a Father who was also a god who would have to be "higher" in progression...etc...etc. Personally do you believe that Elohim's father was/is greater than Elohim at this point of progression? Also what God begot Elohim's wife, was he greater, it gets kind of tricky but this is all in context with defining the LDS nature of God.

I know this is allot to chew on but please stick it out in that it gets us to key points, the role of the LDS God, His beginning, and his standing in the "world of many gods" .

You claim I am being ''evasive", if I haven't answered a question please show me where and I will answer them, again we need the establish the LDS nature of God which is not an easy thing to do, the LDS nature of God is very complex and it can get very confusing if we do not first define the different terms, teachings, conditions, and limitations of the LDS God as taught by LDS GA's since Joesph Smith's first teachings. Also I know you don't care about Dan's paper, but I doubt he covered allot of what I'm discussing here ( ELOP ...etc) , but hey I could be wrong I will have to wait until it is free to read.

As for..." tell us exactly what it is in LDS theology that you are actually objecting to, and why?" Pretty much all of it, we both agreed to that at the beginning in that we are 180 apart, as for the why, it is coming out and after we define or terms the whys will come out for both of us.

Anyway thanks for sticking with this

take care

Mark

John 1:12

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Dr Dan,

I agree that the concept of Trinity/Godhead need not separate us from other Christians. I think one of the biggest problems is that Mormons use religious language differently than everyone else.

It's been noted that many Mormons do not describe the Trinity in a form that Trinitarians can agree with. Recently for example, on one LDS website run by the More Good Foundation, described the Godhead. The author then explained the Trinity, describing it in LDS terms: that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost were "one person." I had to request that they correct the error, as some comments on the page from traditional Christians showed they were upset to not have their belief correctly explained. IOW, the use of the word "person" is different between LDS and traditional Christians.

The same goes with the word "salvation." So many Church leaders over the years have equated salvation with exaltation, that some members consider the Telestial and Terrestrial Kingdoms as a form of mild to severe punishment from God for not accepting the fullness. When asked, "are you saved?", how many LDS can quickly and firmly state, "yes!"?

We will do a better job of approaching our traditional Christian brethren, when we begin to use their language to describe our beliefs. We also will do a better job when we stop calling the Trinitarian belief a terrible apostate belief. Using such strong terms does not help us.

I prefer to call the Godhead a social Trinity, as do many traditional Christian scholars.

Of course, I also think we can reach more traditional Christians, if we also tell explain to them that we believe in a form of Open View Theology, where God is the "most moved mover." This belief is beginning to catch hold in many traditional Christian circles today, and agrees with many of our views.

Hi ram,

We will do a better job of approaching our traditional Christian brethren, when we begin to use their language to describe our beliefs. We also will do a better job when we stop calling the Trinitarian belief a terrible apostate belief. Using such strong terms does not help us.

I disagree, that confuses Christians. A good example is your saying " traditional Christian brethren", when a Christian finds out what LDS theology teaches about 'tradition Christianity" then they get angry, when they find out that LDS theology teaches that what they believe is and abomination before God and that if they profess these beliefs then they are corrupt, then they distance themselves from the LDS faith, with good reason.

When you use "Christian language", without defining the terms and meanings it is deceptive to the person. Another example is "saved", you can say ' sure we are both saved, but in LDS context true salvation for he saint is exaltation and that is the only way to be in the presence of the Father, and they will never be in his presence. To be fair you would have to explain the difference of eternal life and of everlasting life...etc.

This is not a argument but a reality, the average Christian has no idea what the core LDS teachings are and by using " their language to describe our beliefs." your are deceiving them, however sincere, as to the true LDS faith.

I hope you understand what I'm trying to say here, think about it, I have no problems with LDS members teaching what they teach, thats their right, I have a issue though when they mask LDS theology with traditional Christian terms.

take care

Mg

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-1-

I prefer to call the Godhead a social Trinity, as do many traditional Christian scholars.

As I point out in the article, it is mistaken -- and both Latter-day Saints and their critics make this mistake -- to declare that Mormons don't believe in the Trinity.

We do. (In fact, various LDS leaders -- I cite Brigham Young and James E. Talmage as examples -- have used the term Trinity to refer to our concept of the Godhead.) And we believe that God is both one and three. We simply describe and define that unity differently than does Nicene orthodoxy (which, it has been argued by very competent Christian philosophers whose work I cite, is logically incoherent anyway).

I agree that our disputes are sometimes -- though by no means always -- more terminological than substantial, and that we need to work harder to communicate what we really believe, and where we really disagree (as well as where we don't). And I'm with you entirely that trends like Openness Theology and Social Trinitarianism, to name just two, are very, very healthy and, not coincidentally, are working in our direction.

-2-

There doesn't seem to be a clear or easy way, or perhaps any way at all, to order copies of Element from the website of the Society for Mormon Philosophy and Theology.

http://www.smpt.org/publications.html

That's a manifest flaw, and it should be pointed out to those who run the Society so that it can be rectified.

In the meantime, those interested in obtaining a copy of my article or of the latest Element as a whole should probably contact Dr. Brian Birch, the editor of Element, and/or Dr. Benjamin Huff, the Society's secretary:

http://www.uvu.edu/profpages/profiles/show/user_id/450

http://www.rmc.edu/Academics/ethics/faculty.aspx

If you do so, please be patient, remembering that Professors Birch and Huff are unpaid volunteers who do their work for the Society on their own time, and keeping in mind that it's the summer.

Incidentally, there was, it seems, a printing error on the cover of the new issue of Element, and that may result in a delay. Or it may not. Again, be patient. But it probably wouldn't hurt, if you really want a copy, to get yourself on their list now.

Of course, the best thing would be to join the Society!

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Hi Z,

I haven't skirted anything, we are discussing the nature of God, and I have been trying to get you to tell me how many Gods LDS believe there are along with their roles? We would just go in circles if we debate without first defining what we believe in terms we both understand...fair?

No! I readily concede that LDS believe in the plurality of gods; but how many there are, and what role they played has not been revealed, and nobody claims to know. That is a ridiculous and absurd question.
I'm am still trying to qualify your belief on the role of these gods such as creation of the earth, will you concede that LDS theology demands that while all things were created through Christ that all things were also created by a pantheon or group of gods as the BOA relates?
The details of how the world was created, by whom, and what â??rolesâ? they played has not been revealed. The BOA does not say anything beyond the declaration that the world was made by â??Godsâ? instead of â??Godâ?. How many of them there were, and what â??rolesâ? they played, it does not say. In the Hebrew Bible too Elohim literally means Gods. In the BOA, it simply renders that word literally, as â??Gods,â? instead of â??Godâ?. It doesnâ??t say anything about who they were and what â??rolesâ? they played.
From my earliest memories of being born and raised in the church I was taught that the council of God chose Jehovah's plan and made him savior and then later I learned that they, the gods as in the BOA, created the world. This is important to our conversation and establishing what we really believe the nature of God is and his role/s.
We know very little about the preexistence, beyond the fact that plans were made, choices were presented, and some chose to accept the will of God and some chose not to. Those who rebelled against God became the devil and his angels; while those who accepted the will of God were given further opportunities to pass through another testing phase called mortality, during which they would further prove their faithfulness to God, and achieve exaltation in the presence of God. Not much beyond that has been revealed about the preexistence.
This conversation will switch gears and I will answer any question you like on what I believe and why I believe it.
Thanks for the offer. I donâ??t have any questions to ask you; but I will be happy to answer your questionsâ??provided I can see an end in sight. At the moment I am not sure what this is meant to lead to, and I am not sure whether you know either.
On your statement..." We believe that there is one supreme being, Deity, God, Who is God above all, by comparison to Whom there is â??no other Godâ?.

Unless that statement is exclusive to just this earth, I would disagree with that and there is no real precedence that I am aware of from actual LDS authoritative teachings that would back that up, can you give a CF on that, . . .

I assure you that that is the correct doctrinal position of the Church. It is not exclusive to this earth. LDS scripture teaches that all things were created by God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ, not just this earth. Scriptural references are a plenty. Here are a few refs I found by looking up the Topical Guide: D&C 38:3; D&C 45:1; D&C 76:24; D&C 88:7; Moses 1:33. There are more if you cared to look for them.
. . . and if so explain how this works with the Eternal law of Progression . . .
There is no such thing as â??the law of eternal progressionâ?.
I know this is allot to chew on but please stick it out in that it gets us to key points, the role of the LDS God, His beginning, and his standing in the "world of many gods".
You are fantasizing. This is not LDS doctrine. Maybe you have been out in the mid-day sun for too long.
You claim I am being ''evasive", if I haven't answered a question please show me where and I will answer them, . . .
You are being evasive by not giving me a clear understanding of what is the problem you are having with LDS doctrine, so I can give it a straight answer. You are beating about the bush, hoping you can find a chink in my amour so you can attack it. You are looking in vain. You wonâ??t find any.
. . . again we need the establish the LDS nature of God which is not an easy thing to do, the LDS nature of God is very complex and it can get very confusing if we do not first define the different terms, teachings, conditions, and limitations of the LDS God as taught by LDS GA's since Joesph Smith's first teachings.
The â??LDS nature of Godâ? is the biblical one. If you have a problem with that, then you have a problem with the Bible. Perhaps you do, I wouldnâ??t know.
Also I know you don't care about Dan's paper, but I doubt he covered allot of what I'm discussing here (ELOP ...etc) , but hey I could be wrong I will have to wait until it is free to read.
I didnâ??t say that. All I said was that I havenâ??t read it, so I canâ??t comment. But I donâ??t use his, or anybody elseâ??s â??paperâ? as a source of LDS doctrine. The only source I recognize for that is the standard works.
As for..." tell us exactly what it is in LDS theology that you are actually objecting to, and why?" Pretty much all of it, we both agreed to that at the beginning in that we are 180 apart, as for the why, it is coming out and after we define or terms the whys will come out for both of us.
Well, I canâ??t address the â??whyâ? question until it â??comes outâ?. I am starting to yawn now because it seems to be taking forever â??coming outâ?. :P
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Hi Dan,

As I point out in the article, it is mistaken -- and both Latter-day Saints and their critics make this mistake -- to declare that Mormons don't believe in the Trinity.

I think your missing a key point, the word trinity is not the issue, the issue is the "nature of God". To say something like "Mormons believe in the Trinity to" is side stepping the issue that the difference between our two respective beliefs is not the trinity, that's a man made word, the bottom line is that our beliefs on the true nature of God contradict each others teachings in every way.

The biggest difference between our two theologies is without a doubt is the true nature of God. When a critic says that LDS members do not believe in the Trinity they are saying that the LDS view of the nature of God is 180 to their view.

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

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Hi Dan,

I think your missing a key point, the word trinity is not the issue, the issue is the "nature of God". To say something like "Mormons believe in the Trinity to" is side stepping the issue that the difference between our two respective beliefs is not the trinity, that's a man made word, the bottom line is that our beliefs on the true nature of God contradict each others teachings in every way.

The biggest difference between our two theologies is without a doubt is the true nature of God. When a critic says that LDS members do not believe in the Trinity they are saying that the LDS view of the nature of God is 180 to their view.

I don't know what your idea of the "nature of God" is; but ours is the biblical one.
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(In fact, various LDS leaders -- I cite Brigham Young and James E. Talmage as examples -- have used the term Trinity to refer to our concept of the Godhead.) And we believe that God is both one and three. We simply describe and define that unity differently than does Nicene orthodoxy (which, it has been argued by very competent Christian philosophers whose work I cite, is logically incoherent anyway).

I agree that our disputes are sometimes -- though by no means always -- more terminological than substantial, and that we need to work harder to communicate what we really believe, and where we really disagree (as well as where we don't). And I'm with you entirely that trends like Openness Theology and Social Trinitarianism, to name just two, are very, very healthy and, not coincidentally, are working in our direction.

I have been strongly imbued with the notions of "process philosophy" most of my thinking life- now more than 40 years- and I instantly saw in the notion of "eternal progression" a kindred theology that captured all of process philosophy as I knew it and carried it forward into Christianity. The idea that I could be a christian and a subscriber to process philosophy was more than I could have hoped for- and I joined the church 7 weeks after I discovered it, (the missionaries made me wait that long!) and after 30 years now, I have never looked back. I think sometimes Mormons don't have a clue about how strong their position is philosophically and to me, it is only a matter of time until we who represent the "stone" of the gospel roll forth and fill the earth. But we have to understand and manage that rolling stone's path carefully, because in an open universe, nothing is absolutely certain.

I totally agree of course about the combination of openness theology and social trinitarianism. Any God who hears and answers prayers must be capable of interacting with his children- there is a relationship there- and the notion of an intereactive relationship is incompatible with a God who does not change. I think that is the crux of the issue - either God doesn't care what happens to us, and is unchanging, or he IS interactive with his children and therefore capable of change. Logically, you absolutely cannot have it both ways, and I think that was the trap that christianity fell into by going down the path of neo platonism. Any interaction is a change.

I have often wondered how different the world would have been if Heraclitus had been a little clearer in his writing ability and persuasiveness, and kept away from his nearly mystical accounts of the "unchangeableness of change". Perhaps his ideas would have caught on and thinkers like Plato and Aristotle would have seen the world differently. Yet his analogy of an eternal river, which is always there and constant in its flow and yet changing on a micro level continuously from moment to moment is an apt one for God. I recall thinking about this on a trip to Nauvoo, standing at the end of Parley street and looking at that vast expanse of the Mississippi and thinking about how "eternal" indeed it seemed. And yet every leaf that falls, every twig every swirl and eddy shows that it is ever changing as well. The key is understanding what language can and cannot do, and not allowing the words to get in the way.

And if we were more prone to think this way, I think the "problem" of the trinity- the "one God vs three Gods" problem would vanish too. Like the story of the blind man and the elephant, what is "really there" depends on your point of view. And the trinity is the same. One God, three persons perfectly unified in love and the purpose of bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of man, ineracting perfectly with their very imperfect children. And we who have kids know that child rearing is a highly uncertain business!

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You would have enjoyed the meetings at Claremont (where the Institute for Process Studies is located). We had doyens of current process thought like Marjorie Suchocki, Philip Clayton, and John Cobb come in and speak to the Society. Dan Wotherspoon, one of the Society's board members, did his dissertation at Claremont under David Ray Griffen, another leading process thinker. Jim McLachlan, the Society's current president, spent a postdoctoral sabbatical at Claremont, doing process studies, although he doesn't quite consider himself a process thinker.

There's a lot of interesting ground to cover.

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You would have enjoyed the meetings at Claremont (where the Institute for Process Studies is located). We had doyens of current process thought like Marjorie Suchocki, Philip Clayton, and John Cobb come in and speak to the Society. Dan Wotherspoon, one of the Society's board members, did his dissertation at Claremont under David Ray Griffen, another leading process thinker. Jim McLachlan, the Society's current president, spent a postdoctoral sabbatical at Claremont, doing process studies, although he doesn't quite consider himself a process thinker.

There's a lot of interesting ground to cover.

I know- I am looking forward to getting involved but it just didn't work out this year. But I am so close I should get out there and see what trouble I can get into! :P

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Hi Z,

No! I readily concede that LDS believe in the plurality of gods; but how many there are, and what role they played has not been revealed, and nobody claims to know. That is a ridiculous and absurd question.

Ok, then there is more than one God ( beyond count not possible to know how many) and at least two of these Gods are worshiped here on this earth, Elohim and Jehovah...is that a fair statement of LDS theology?

The details of how the world was created, by whom, and what â??rolesâ? they played has not been revealed. The BOA does not say anything beyond the declaration that the world was made by â??Godsâ? instead of â??Godâ?. How many of them there were, and what â??rolesâ? they played, it does not say. In the Hebrew Bible too Elohim literally means Gods. In the BOA, it simply renders that word literally, as â??Gods,â? instead of â??Godâ?. It doesnâ??t say anything about who they were and what â??rolesâ? they played.

But never the less this world was not created by just Elohim or Jehovah according to LDS theology, it was created by "other" Gods so LDS theology (POGP) adds to the Biblical account... is that a fair statement of LDS theology?

Yes Elohim is the plural for for El (God) ...which would add even more confusion to Biblical text if it were taken literally in a literal sense.

We know very little about the preexistence, beyond the fact that plans were made, choices were presented, and some chose to accept the will of God and some chose not to. Those who rebelled against God became the devil and his angels; while those who accepted the will of God were given further opportunities to pass through another testing phase called mortality, during which they would further prove their faithfulness to God, and achieve exaltation in the presence of God. Not much beyond that has been revealed about the preexistence.

And I will add to that that man can further exalt and be like Elohim http://scriptures.lds.org/en/tg/m/29 this can only be done by obedience to the eternal laws of the Gospel, or the eternal law of progression. Again one can not come to this conclusion in the Bible without modern revelation by the LDS leadership, is that a fair statement.

I assure you that that is the correct doctrinal position of the Church. It is not exclusive to this earth. LDS scripture teaches that all things were created by God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ, not just this earth. Scriptural references are a plenty. Here are a few refs I found by looking up the Topical Guide: D&C 38:3; D&C 45:1; D&C 76:24; D&C 88:7; Moses 1:33. There are more if you cared to look for them.

But the BOA adds to and expands this. You have conceded that you do not know the role and expanse of the other gods. One can only assume according to LDS theology that other worlds are created the same as this world...by the gods who planned and spoke into being these proposed worlds.

There is no such thing as â??the law of eternal progressionâ?.

I couldn't agree more, unfortunately LDS theology teaches it very clearly. either these teachers were false teachers and the people were deceived by these teachers...i.e JS, BY JFS, Talmage, McKonkie...etc, or ELoP is a teaching, do a poll here and se what members think about it here? One can not exalt without obedience to eternal laws.

You are fantasizing. This is not LDS doctrine. Maybe you have been out in the mid-day sun for too long.

The problem is that your having problems dealing with core LDS theology. Progression demands what you claim is not LDS doctrine, I believe your problem may be with past LDS teachings other than me. When JS taught that God was onece a man, and as other GA's expounded on this teaching it created a bid can of worms. Do you believe JS teaching that God was once a man?

You are being evasive by not giving me a clear understanding of what is the problem you are having with LDS doctrine, so I can give it a straight answer. You are beating about the bush, hoping you can find a chink in my amour so you can attack it. You are looking in vain. You wonâ??t find any.

I'm trying to get you to understand that the nature of the LDS God as taught by LDS leadership is not an easy thing to get a handle on, you seem to be denying more than you believe?

I didnâ??t say that. All I said was that I havenâ??t read it, so I canâ??t comment. But I donâ??t use his, or anybody elseâ??s â??paperâ? as a source of LDS doctrine. The only source I recognize for that is the standard works.

You said "Not interested in Dan or Ed Decker. Only interested in the Bible. " Sorry, I took your remark as not carry about Dan's paper, my bad.

Well, I canâ??t address the â??whyâ? question until it â??comes outâ?. I am starting to yawn now because it seems to be taking forever â??coming outâ?.

Again the why's are obvious, your not even buying half of the LDS dogma of the nature of God, it only gets stranger, but thanks for hanging in.

Take care

MG

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Hi Z,

Ok, then there is more than one God (beyond count not possible to know how many) and at least two of these Gods are worshiped here on this earth, Elohim and Jehovah...is that a fair statement of LDS theology?

There is no â??at leastâ? about it. Two of them are worshipped on this earth and everywhere. And ultimately there is only one that is worshipped, the Father, in the name of His Son Jesus Christ. There is no other true God worshipped on this earth and in the rest of the universe.
But never the less this world was not created by just Elohim or Jehovah according to LDS theology, it was created by "other" Gods so LDS theology (POGP) adds to the Biblical account... is that a fair statement of LDS theology?
No! All things were created by the Father through His Son Jesus Christ, Who may have had others to assist Him. There were no â??special godsâ? creating different things. The â??godsâ? mentioned in the BOA may simply have been our spirits in the pre-existence. According to Psalm 82:6 â??I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.â? The title of â??godsâ? is applied in scriptural contexts to all the children of God precisely because that is what they are, the children of God, and so have the potential to become like Him. It doesnâ??t mean that they special â??deitiesâ? being worshipped by somebody somewhere.
Yes Elohim is the plural for for El (God) ...which would add even more confusion to Biblical text if it were taken literally in a literal sense.
Not at all. Joseph Smith taught that strictly speaking Elohim should be translated â??Gods,â? and I see nothing confusing about that at all.
And I will add to that that man can further exalt and be like Elohim http://scriptures.lds.org/en/tg/m/29 this can only be done by obedience to the eternal laws of the Gospel, or the eternal law of progression. Again one can not come to this conclusion in the Bible without modern revelation by the LDS leadership, is that a fair statement.
No! Exaltation comes through obedience to the laws of the gospel, period. There is no such thing as â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If by â??the laws of eternal progressionâ? you mean the laws of the gospel, then I can go along with that; but I donâ??t see any reason for reinventing the wheel, or inventing unscriptural terms for scriptural ones. That is confusing and unnecessary. I would rather stick with the scriptural terms.
But the BOA adds to and expands this. You have conceded that you do not know the role and expanse of the other gods. One can only assume according to LDS theology that other worlds are created the same as this world...by the gods who planned and spoke into being these proposed worlds.
No! Other worlds were created in the same way as this worldâ??by God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ, Who may have had others to assist Him. There is no such thing as different â??godsâ? creating different â??worldsâ?.
I couldn't agree more, unfortunately LDS theology teaches it very clearly. either these teachers were false teachers and the people were deceived by these teachers...i.e JS, BY JFS, Talmage, McKonkie...etc, or ELoP is a teaching, do a poll here and se what members think about it here?
I donâ??t care what people here think. Those teachers also told us to stick to the standard works as a source of LDS doctrine. They may have had their own reasons for using unscriptural terms to describe gospel principles. I like to stick to the scriptural ones.
One can not exalt without obedience to eternal laws.
Gospel laws are eternal, I agree.
The problem is that your having problems dealing with core LDS theology. Progression demands what you claim is not LDS doctrine, I believe your problem may be with past LDS teachings other than me.
â??Core LDS theologyâ? is the scriptural one; and I have no â??problems dealing withâ? that at all. What others have said in the past is not my concern. They may have taught all kinds of things. Brigham Young taught the Adam-God theory that nobody believed then, or believes now.
When JS taught that God was onece a man, and as other GA's expounded on this teaching it created a bid can of worms. Do you believe JS teaching that God was once a man?
I agree with Gordon B. Hinckley on that one. He said he didnâ??t know how God came to be God. He said that the knowledge has not been revealed. He said that he didnâ??t know anything about it, and he wasnâ??t aware that anybody else did either. He also questioned the circumstances under which that sermon was preached. He is the prophet. If he didnâ??t know how God came to be God, neither do I.
I'm trying to get you to understand that the nature of the LDS God as taught by LDS leadership is not an easy thing to get a handle on, you seem to be denying more than you believe?
I donâ??t know of any scripture, ancient or modern, that describes the â??natureâ? of God. The scriptures only tell us about the attributes of God. They tell us that God is omniscient and omnipotent. They tell us that He is kind and merciful. They tell us that He is just. They tell us that He is unchangeable. They tell us that He does not lie. They tell us that He fulfils His promises. They tell us that He is the creator of all things. And I as a Mormon do not have any problems with that. But as far as I know nobody knows what the â??natureâ? of God is. If you think you know, please tell us, and then I can tell you whether I agree with your statement or not.
Again the why's are obvious, your not even buying half of the LDS dogma of the nature of God, it only gets stranger, but thanks for hanging in.
What â??nature of Godâ?? I am waiting to hear.
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Hi Z,

There is no â??at leastâ? about it. Two of them are worshipped on this earth and everywhere. And ultimately there is only one that is worshipped, the Father, in the name of His Son Jesus Christ. There is no other true God worshipped on this earth and in the rest of the universe.

How can two Gods be worshipped but only one ultimately? That is a contradiction. I have heard both views, and believed at one time the latter, but I have never heard them lumped together. Help me understand this view?

The BoA disagrees with you that the gods were not co-equal in creation on this earth and the heavens. The BoA says clearly that the Gods "counseled, formed, called, formed, organized, prepare, bring forth, and caused." Whether you call it assist or whatever, it does not say that. In the heading the LDS church says..."The Gods plan the creation of the earth and all life thereonâ??Their plans for the six days of creation are set forth. "

Not at all. Joseph Smith taught that strictly speaking Elohim should be translated â??Gods,â? and I see nothing confusing about that at all.

JS also taught that God was one a man as you and me, do you believe that? At any rate how would interpret this verse in the bible...

"Psa 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God [is] holy. "

There are hundreds of verses that are like this one that use the word Elohim, the word LORD here is Jehovah, so break it down and tell me what that means.

No! Exaltation comes through obedience to the laws of the gospel, period. There is no such thing as â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If by â??the laws of eternal progressionâ? you mean the laws of the gospel, then I can go along with that; but I donâ??t see any reason for reinventing the wheel, or inventing unscriptural terms for scriptural ones. That is confusing and unnecessary. I would rather stick with the scriptural terms.

I was taught different, you may call it what you wish but it starts at Intelligence, to the spirit world, to mortal life, to one of three estates, to the final and highest estate and possible Godhood. Only by obedience to certain eternal laws can one progress, again call it what you like but according to LDS theology one can not progress with obedience to these eternal laws. Past GA's used the term to explain what the believe the LDS scriptures teach.

No! Other worlds were created in the same way as this worldâ??by God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ, Who may have had others to assist Him. There is no such thing as different â??godsâ? creating different â??worldsâ?.

In the matrix of LDS thought and teachings you have no way of knowing that, the D&C implies this when it discusses the continuation of seeds. It is taught and I sat under this teaching that exalted man WILL populate his world through this continuation of seeds. There has been much written and taught by LDS leaders that would support this line of thought. If other worlds were indeed created the same way as this world was then it was with a multitude of Gods.

Do you believe that a council was set for each world created and a plan like Jehovah's and Lucifer's were submitted?

I understand where you are coming from, and I believe it is good you don't buy into the full context of what has been taught by LDS leaders, but having a "surface" type belief without taking all that has been taught in the take is really not possible. If you really think about it and are honest in your thought LDS theology is becoming closer to the theology of what you would call "apostate Christianity". With JS teaching God was once a man like you and me, and BY teaching Adam was God, and the years of JFS and BM and the denial that these men mostly taught opinion, lDS theology is becoming closer to "apostate Christianity". Dan's conclusion and things like GBH's statement about not knowing if God was once a man show this evolution of LDS theology toward mainstream Christianity.

I donâ??t care what people here think. Those teachers also told us to stick to the standard works as a source of LDS doctrine. They may have had their own reasons for using unscriptural terms to describe gospel principles. I like to stick to the scriptural ones.

Well, how do you know when they told you to stick to the standard works it was not opinion? I can think of very many hymns, if any, that tell LDS to stick tothe scriptures, but I can think of a fe wthat talk about following the prophet. It's kind of pick and choose when it comes to what a member is to believe, the words of a prophet or personal understanding of LDS scripture.

â??Core LDS theologyâ? is the scriptural one; and I have no â??problems dealing withâ? that at all. What others have said in the past is not my concern. They may have taught all kinds of things. Brigham Young taught the Adam-God theory that nobody believed then, or believes now.

Then why have a prophet? Your wrong that nobody believed BY on the AGD, journals of the people say different, if it wasn't for critics like Pratt it might have stuck, but thats for another thread. Again LDS theology is moving closer to "apostate christianity" than it ever was, it doesn't say allot about the restoration.

I agree with Gordon B. Hinckley on that one. He said he didnâ??t know how God came to be God. He said that the knowledge has not been revealed. He said that he didnâ??t know anything about it, and he wasnâ??t aware that anybody else did either. He also questioned the circumstances under which that sermon was preached. He is the prophet. If he didnâ??t know how God came to be God, neither do I.

I appreciate your honesty, GBH was closer to mainstream Christianity that all the others prophets put together,and that's a good thing, but his saying that to Larry King and Time, does not erase 150 years of LDS teaching that God was onece a man, LDS teaching manuals are clear that this is a LDS core teaching. A person can claim all do long that the standard works are the sole bench mark of LDS theology, but it is what the LDS teaches is what they believe.

I donâ??t know of any scripture, ancient or modern, that describes the â??natureâ? of God. The scriptures only tell us about the attributes of God. They tell us that God is omniscient and omnipotent. They tell us that He is kind and merciful. They tell us that He is just. They tell us that He is unchangeable. They tell us that He does not lie. They tell us that He fulfils His promises. They tell us that He is the creator of all things. And I as a Mormon do not have any problems with that. But as far as I know nobody knows what the â??natureâ? of God is. If you think you know, please tell us, and then I can tell you whether I agree with your statement or not.

Gods attributes define his nature. I believe God is Spirit, all knowing, all powerful, these attributes define His nature. The LDS God is not all knowing according to most teachings and he has a body of fleah and bone, that part of his nature, he is only omnipresent by his spirit, that is part of hus nature. LDS.org defines Gods nature as eternal, I would agree with that although there are LDS teachings that would contradict that statement.

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

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Dan's conclusion . . . show this evolution of LDS theology toward mainstream Christianity.

It shows nothing of the sort.

Markkk hasn't read the article. He has no idea whatsoever what he's talking about.

Again LDS theology is moving closer to "apostate christianity" than it ever was, it doesn't say allot about the restoration.

Markkkk believes that my article, which he hasn't read, is an example of this. Markkkkk doesn't know what he's talking about.

But he's consistent. "We all know," he wrote the other day, "that books written by men mean nothing." And apparently he believes that the same principle applies to articles written by men, too. They mean nothing. He can interpret them and refute them without having ever seen them.

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It shows nothing of the sort.

Markkk hasn't read the article. He has no idea whatsoever what he's talking about.

Markkkk believes that my article, which he hasn't read, is an example of this. Markkkkk doesn't know what he's talking about.

But he's consistent. "We all know," he wrote the other day, "that books written by men mean nothing." And apparently he believes that the same principle applies to articles written by men, too. They mean nothing. He can interpret them and refute them without having ever seen them.

Hi Dan,

A little cranky tonight?

I can only base it on your conclusion which says..."Latter-day Saints and other Christians will continue to disagree on many things. But, if I'm correct, the doctrine of the Trinity need not loom quite so large among them"

Is that your conclusion to your paper or not, if it's not scratch what I said, geez, and if it isn't then we will just say your incorrect in your papers conclusion? So Bottom line you believe we are still miles apart on our view of the Trinity or we, as your conclusion says, will not be in much disagreement of our two view's. So what is it Dan, are you correct here or incorrect, lets just end the debate here?

"that books written by men mean nothing." Brilliant use of context, is that all you have? Oh yea you can fall back on the good ol'e add K's to Marks name...that one really hurts, I'll teach you to mess with me, here take this Dannnn?

You crack me up.

Love ya Dan, always fun

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

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Hi Z,

How can two Gods be worshipped but only one ultimately? That is a contradiction. I have heard both views, and believed at one time the latter, but I have never heard them lumped together. Help me understand this view?

This is how:

3 Nephi 19
:

22 Father, thou hast given them the Holy Ghost because they believe in me; and thou seest that they believe in me because thou hearest them, and they pray unto me; and they pray unto me
because I am with them
.

23 And now Father, I pray unto thee for them, and also for all those who shall believe on their words, that they may believe in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one.

The BoA disagrees with you that the gods were not co-equal in creation on this earth and the heavens. The BoA says clearly that the Gods "counseled, formed, called, formed, organized, prepare, bring forth, and caused." Whether you call it assist or whatever, it does not say that.
It does not say they were â??coequalâ? either. That is your invention. The first verse of Abraham 4 reads:

And then the
Lord
said [to the Gods]: Let
us
go down. And they went down at the beginning, and they,
that is the Gods,
organized and formed the heavens and the earth.

That makes it plain that they were not all of equal rank. The â??Lordâ? that said to the rest â??let us go downâ? was superior in rank than they were. He took the lead, which makes Him superior to them.

In the heading the LDS church says..."The Gods plan the creation of the earth and all life thereonâ??Their plans for the six days of creation are set forth."
See above.
JS also taught that God was one a man as you and me, do you believe that? At any rate how would interpret this verse in the bible...
The answer to that was already given.
"Psa 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God [is] holy."

There are hundreds of verses that are like this one that use the word Elohim, the word LORD here is Jehovah, so break it down and tell me what that means.

There are at least two possible answers to that. One possibility is that Jesus sometimes assumes the title of the Father, as previously explained. Another possibility is that in the Hebrew Bible Elohim is often simply used as the synonym for God; and since Jehovah is also God, there is no contradiction in calling Him Elohim.
I was taught different, you may call it what you wish but it starts at Intelligence, to the spirit world, to mortal life, to one of three estates, to the final and highest estate and possible Godhood. Only by obedience to certain eternal laws can one progress, again call it what you like but according to LDS theology one can not progress with obedience to these eternal laws.
The pre-existence is passed. The rules that govern our salvation here and now is called the gospel. We obey the gospel laws to receive salvation and exaltation. Gospel laws are eternal, I agree. I donâ??t know what is meant by â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If by that is meant the gospel, then I would rather call it the gospel, than call it â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If something else is meant by that, then you have to explain to me what it means, because I honestly do not know.
Past GA's used the term to explain what the believe the LDS scriptures teach.
Then somebody has to explain to me what it means. How do I obey â??the laws of eternal progressionâ? to be saved and exalted, if it is something other that obeying the gospel? If it is the same thing as the gospel, can somebody tell me why I should call it that, instead of calling it the gospel?
In the matrix of LDS thought and teachings you have no way of knowing that, . . .
We most certainly do. I had given you plenty of scriptural references to prove it:

D&C 38:3
â??I am the same which spake, and the world was made, and
all
things came by me.â?

D&C 45:1
â??. . . hearken ye and give ear to him who laid the foundation of the earth, who made the heavens and
all
the hosts thereof, and by whom
all
things were made which live, and move, and have a being.â?

D&C 76:24
â??That by him, and through him, and of him,
the worlds
are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.â?

D&C 93:10
â??The
worlds
were made by him;
men
were made by him;
all things
were made by him, and through him, and of him.

Moses 1:33
â??And
worlds without number
have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and
by the Son
I created them, which is mine Only Begotten.â?

All things were made by Jesus Christ; and â??without Him was not anything made that was madeâ? (John 1:3). If that does not speak to you clearly enough, I donâ??t know what else would.

. . . the D&C implies this when it discusses the continuation of seeds.
It does talk about the â??continuation of seeds;â? but it is a big jump from that, to becoming â??gods of your own planetâ?. One simply does not follow from the other.
It is taught and I sat under this teaching that exalted man WILL populate his world through this continuation of seeds. There has been much written and taught by LDS leaders that would support this line of thought. If other worlds were indeed created the same way as this world was then it was with a multitude of Gods.
Then you have been misled. You have been taught incorrect doctrine. I donâ??t blame you for that. I blame those who have taught you. I blame you for not heeding the counsel of Church leaders to stick close to the standard works for your knowledge of doctrine. I will quote you a verse from the Doctrine and Covenants that will stand you in good stead should you decide at some future date to return to the LDS Church again:

D&C 46
:

7 But ye are commanded in all things to ask of God, who giveth liberally; and that which the Spirit testifies unto you even so I would that ye should do in all holiness of heart, walking uprightly before me, considering the end of your salvation, doing all things with prayer and thanksgiving, that ye may not be seduced by evil spirits, or doctrines of devils, or the commandments of men; for some are of men, and others of devils.

8 Wherefore, beware lest ye are deceived; and that ye may not be deceived seek ye earnestly the best gifts, always remembering for what they are given;

The Church is true, but it is not perfect; and incorrect doctrines are sometimes taught in the Church. If you do not heed those warnings, and do not receive those spiritual gifts, you can be misled.

Continued . . . /

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/. . . Continued

Do you believe that a council was set for each world created and a plan like Jehovah's and Lucifer's were submitted?
No! The scriptures categorically and consistently teach the following doctrines:

  1. Jesus (under the direction of the Father) is the creator of all that has been created.
  2. Jesus also is the Savior and Redeemer of all of Godâ??s creation, not just of this earth.
  3. Though it is not stated in the scriptures, it is reasonable to conclude that Satan also is the tempter and deceiver in all of Godâ??s creation, not just of this earth.

I understand where you are coming from, and I believe it is good you don't buy into the full context of what has been taught by LDS leaders, but having a "surface" type belief without taking all that has been taught in the take is really not possible.
I donâ??t accept that at all. I do not consider my belief in the Church to be â??surface typeâ?. The views I have expressed here are an indication of it depth, not of its superficiality.
If you really think about it and are honest in your thought LDS theology is becoming closer to the theology of what you would call "apostate Christianity".
I donâ??t buy that one little bit. Rectifying past mistakes does not mean drawing closer to â??apostate Christianityâ?. The core beliefs of Mormonism has not changed and do not change. The most fundamental feature of Mormonism that sets it apart from all other churches is the doctrine of Apostasy and Restoration. That has not changed and will not change. Other distinguishing features of Mormonism are belief in the prophetic calling of Joseph Smith, the truth of the Book of Mormon and other latter-day scriptures of the Church; the restoration of the priesthood; the principle of continuing revelation and open canon of scripture; the separate members of the Godhead, and the Father having a physical body; and numerous other doctrines that are unique to Mormonism and are affirmed by LDS scripture. These do not change and have not changed. But Adam-God theory is not Mormonism. We are not abandoning anything by rejecting that.
With JS teaching God was once a man like you and me, and BY teaching Adam was God, and the years of JFS and BM and the denial that these men mostly taught opinion, lDS theology is becoming closer to "apostate Christianity".
Absolutely not. Can you show me where any church leader has denied or rejected a doctrine specifically taught in the Book of Mormon, the D&C, or the Pearl of Great Price? Those doctrines that were abandoned were speculations and were not revealed doctrine. If you want to know what a church that is abandoning its beliefs to become closer to â??apostate Christendomâ? looks like, I can show you one. Look at the CoC/RLDS church. They have pretty much abandoned all their distinctive beliefs to become more like mainstream Christian churches. We havenâ??t done that.
Dan's conclusion and things like GBH's statement about not knowing if God was once a man show this evolution of LDS theology toward mainstream Christianity.
I suggest that you donâ??t mix up Dan with GBH. Dan does not speak for the Church; GBH does. As far as his take on the King Follett doctrine is concerned, I have already answered that, and need not answer it again.
Well, how do you know when they told you to stick to the standard works it was not opinion? I can think of very many hymns, if any, that tell LDS to stick tothe scriptures, but I can think of a fe wthat talk about following the prophet. It's kind of pick and choose when it comes to what a member is to believe, the words of a prophet or personal understanding of LDS scripture.
I am afraid you are wrong. You do not understand the LDS position. The Prophet is inspired of the Lord when he gives counsel to Church members on moral issues and how to conduct their lives. But if he wants to introduce new doctrine into the Church, which cannot be supported by the standard works, he must follow a set procedure, otherwise his teaching is not binding on the Church.
Then why have a prophet? Your wrong that nobody believed BY on the AGD, journals of the people say different, if it wasn't for critics like Pratt it might have stuck, but thats for another thread. Again LDS theology is moving closer to "apostate christianity" than it ever was, it doesn't say allot about the restoration.
Not at all, see above. What makes you think that ancient prophets never made any mistakes? How do you know Moses didnâ??t? How do you know Joshua didnâ??t? How do you know Isaiah didnâ??t? All we have of them is their canonized scriptures. We donâ??t have everything that they ever said in their lives. If all you had of Joseph Smith was his canonized scripture, you wouldnâ??t know anything about the King Follett discourse, because it is not canonized scripture.
I appreciate your honesty, GBH was closer to mainstream Christianity that all the others prophets put together, and that's a good thing, but his saying that to Larry King and Time, does not erase 150 years of LDS teaching that God was onece a man, LDS teaching manuals are clear that this is a LDS core teaching. A person can claim all do long that the standard works are the sole bench mark of LDS theology, but it is what the LDS teaches is what they believe.
That is your wishful thinking. GBH did no such thing. Mormonism is no closer to â??mainstream Christianityâ? today than it ever was.
Gods attributes define his nature. I believe God is Spirit, all knowing, all powerful, these attributes define His nature. The LDS God is not all knowing according to most teachings . . .
I donâ??t know what â??teachingsâ? you are referring to; but that is not Mormonism.
. . . and he has a body of fleah and bone, that part of his nature, he is only omnipresent by his spirit, that is part of hus nature.
Agreed, that sets Mormon apart from â??mainstream Christianityâ?â??and it hasnâ??t changed either. It will not change. It is received by revelation, and is correct doctrine. We are not somehow embarrassed to acknowledge that.
LDS.org defines Gods nature as eternal, I would agree with that although there are LDS teachings that would contradict that statement.
Not that I am aware of.
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Markkkk, you're not fun.

You're not prepared for genuine conversation.

Your presumption that you can understand, rebut, and dismiss the argument and conclusion of a 43-page academic paper with hundreds of footnotes based solely on having read its rather unspecific -- unspecific unless you've read the paper, which is devoted to specifying precisely what I mean -- final two sentences is merely one illustration of your lack of preparedness. I would fail any student who turned in a book review or article summary after reading only the last two sentences of the article or book s/he was supposed to summarize/critique. And I would do it with gusto.

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Markkkk, you're not fun.

You're not prepared for genuine conversation.

Your presumption that you can understand, rebut, and dismiss the argument and conclusion of a 43-page academic paper with hundreds of footnotes based solely on having read its rather unspecific -- unspecific unless you've read the paper, which is devoted to specifying precisely what I mean -- final two sentences is merely one illustration of your lack of preparedness. I would fail any student who turned in a book review or article summary after reading only the last two sentences of the article or book s/he was supposed to summarize/critique. And I would do it with gusto.

Hi Dan,

I doubt if you would do it with gusto Dan, your a better man than that. Academic papers come and go, some have substance others are not worth the paper they are written on. There are countless of academic papers on topics ranging from men came from monkey's to abortion is not a termanation of life, you seem to be under the impression that academic articles have a given of being correct. Maybe after reading your paper I'll find I'm way off on the context of your article, but if it is in context with your conclusion your paper of off.

If your conclusion in any way shape or form is saying that the LDS view of the nature of God is anywhere close to mainstream Christianity's view of the nature of God, it is way off, it's that simple. The LDS view of the nature of God is the single most dividing point between our faiths...period.

If your paper is not suggesting that the LDS view of the nature of God and the mainstream view remotely complement each other then I'm wrong, but if it does the your wrong.

We can objectivley debate our views, or we can just throw jabs at each other like a bunch of baby's, your call? I would love to see you throw out a short commentary on your conclusion, if I'm wrong I will apologize.

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

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Hi Dan,

I doubt if you would do it with gusto Dan, your a better man than that. Academic papers come and go, some have substance others are not worth the paper they are written on. There are countless of academic papers on topics ranging from men came from monkey's to abortion is not a termanation of life, you seem to be under the impression that academic articles have a given of being correct. Maybe after reading your paper I'll find I'm way off on the context of your article, but if it is in context with your conclusion your paper of off.

If your conclusion in any way shape or form is saying that the LDS view of the nature of God is anywhere close to mainstream Christianity's view of the nature of God, it is way off, it's that simple. The LDS view of the nature of God is the single most dividing point between our faiths...period.

If your paper is not suggesting that the LDS view of the nature of God and the mainstream view remotely complement each other then I'm wrong, but if it does the your wrong.

We can objectivley debate our views, or we can just throw jabs at each other like a bunch of baby's, your call? I would love to see you throw out a short commentary on your conclusion, if I'm wrong I will apologize.

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

The LDS Church makes no statement about the â??nature of Godâ?. The â??nature of Godâ? is not a subject of discussion in scripture; and as far as I know God has not given us a revelation about His â??natureâ?. The only thing that has been revealed in scripture about God are His character traits and attributes; and the two are not exactly equivalent.

At first you were harping on about the Trinity. You got no joy out of that one, and now you have changed tack and switched over to â??nature,â? which is even more meaningless in the context in which you are trying to discuss it. Dan's book is about the Trinity. What has â??natureâ? got to do with that? And how does your â??theory of naturesâ? relate to that? :P

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Hi Dan,

I doubt if you would do it with gusto Dan, your a better man than that. Academic papers come and go, some have substance others are not worth the paper they are written on. There are countless of academic papers on topics ranging from men came from monkey's to abortion is not a termanation of life, you seem to be under the impression that academic articles have a given of being correct.

How on earth do you arrive at that?

What Dan has been trying to say -- and in increasingly simple language -- and that you completely fail to grasp, is that an informed opinion requires, well, information.

For all you know, Dan's article may be simply the last word on the subject, and the finest such article ever written. OTOH, for all I know, it may be a tissue of worthless nonsense. I don't know; and neither do you. Because, you see, I haven't read it; and neither have you.

Therefore, your opinion on it is utterly and completely uninformed, and your blatherings on the subject are worse than useless.

In order to have an informed opinion about Dan's paper you would have to read it.

And having read it, you would have to understand it.

But in order to do that, you'd have to be willing to reconsider your knee-jerk assumptions about the Church of Jesus Christ. It may be possible that, after such reading and reconsideration, an informed person might decide that your position is substantially correct after all; but without such reading and reconsideration, you've got nothing at all to say.

And, as the thread originator has several times politely requested, you should therefore refrain from saying anything. At all.

Frankly, I expect that if you ever do manage to find the attention span to read Dan's article, you will not substantively engage it. In any way. Rather, you will simply continue to recite your mindless mantra as if Dan's article had never been written.

On what do I base my prediction?

Simply this: a number of years ago, Dan and Stephen D. Ricks wrote a fine little book called Offenders for a Word. In that, they addressed all the major arguments used by anti-Mormons to support the accusation that Mormonism is not Christian. The book is well-researched and well-argued. IM(v)HO, it simply nails the issue.

In the years since I read it, I waited for a substantive rebuttal to come from the various anti-Mormon presses that blight the face of North America.

And I'm still waiting.

The book, and its arguments, have simply not been substantively addressed.

But has that stopped, or even softened, the continuing chorus of those who would deny the Christianity of the Latter-day Saints?

Not for a second!

Daily we are treated to dumb rednecks saying things like "Marmuns ain't Chrisjun cuz they ain't like us'n."

Perhaps, Markk, you regard yourself as uniquely qualified to address this question. If so, then I have a challenge for you: you can read Dan's book here and it won't cost you a red cent. Then you can come back and lay out your substantive arguments as to why he is wrong.

Because then you'll have something to say on this subject. Unlike the article under discussion.

But let me make this absolutely clear to you: if you fail to deal with Dan's argument, then the next time you trot out your tired and discredited "Mormons ain't Christian" claim, knowing that it has been refuted, and knowing that you have entirely failed to address it, you will be telling a lie.

Regards,

Pahoran

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The LDS Church makes no statement about the â??nature of Godâ?. The â??nature of Godâ? is not a subject of discussion in scripture; and as far as I know God has not given us a revelation about His â??natureâ?. The only thing that has been revealed in scripture about God are His character traits and attributes; and the two are not exactly equivalent.

At first you were harping on about the Trinity. You got no joy out of that one, and now you have changed tack and switched over to â??nature,â? which is even more meaningless in the context in which you are trying to discuss it. Dan's book is about the Trinity. What has â??natureâ? got to do with that? And how does your â??theory of naturesâ? relate to that? :P

Hi Z,

I'm not sure how to answer you on this one. Try looking at this LDS http http://scriptures.lds.org/en/tg/g/62 make sure to read the attributes listed under the heading eternal nature of God, these are attributes that define God's Nature. When I speak of the trinity it is specifically defining God's triune nature One God by nature, manifest in three persons, yet again one God in Nature.

Go to pro LDS sites and search "nature of God " and do some research, start here http://www.fairlds.org/Misc/Evidence_for_t..._the_Bible.html

http://speeches.byu.edu/reader/reader.php?id=11037

http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/basic/g...lett_nature.htm

I hope this helps, I haven't read your last posts, I will read and respond tonight.

Thanks

Mark

John 1:12

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As D.R Phil [A Baptist Man] would say - "The Best predictor of future behavior is past behaviour" and your history of being banned several times for your comments in your posts in the past. Let me give you a BIG HUG :rolleyes: ! [ You seemed to have a problem with the Hug I gave you some time ago at the Mariners LDS/Evangelical Dialogue as you gave me a look of utter Dismay] but I forgive you.

In His Debt/Grace, Tanyan, LDS JEDI KNIGHT.

Oh darth vader Tanyan, what does being restricted several times from the board have to do with my understanding of the way the Trinitarian view of God is not accurately represented by Mormonism? (not banned, the one time I explained as being ignorant of a particular board rule, the other times I disagreed with but it is the board monitors job to do as they see fit)

I responded to the thread topic not my response to a hug from you that is not relevant to the topic at hand (I remember a greeting, not a hug, as there were several meetings we attended seperately and exchanged greetings).

I certainly have the right to respond to Dr. Peterson asI see fit and not be told how to respond. It is within common courtesy to hear ones's argument for or against something before making a judgment about the argument. I withheld a judment of his article (as I haven't read it yet although I attended one of his talks at a local Mormon ward back in 1998 and read a lot of his postings both here and over at ZLMB so it wasn't a shot in the dark).

I disagree big time with Mormonism so Dr. Peterson's personal views are not a required reading to understand the Mormon view of God.

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Hi Z

Allot to cover I'll get as far as I can, if I don't finish I will later, if I miss something important make sure and tell me. These things get long and out of

control sometimes.

Hi Z, ( your italic, i'm bold )

How can two Gods be worshipped but only one ultimately? That is a contradiction. I have heard both views, and believed at one time the latter, but I have never heard them lumped together. Help me understand this view?

This is how:

3 Nephi 19:

22 Father, thou hast given them the Holy Ghost because they believe in me; and thou seest that they believe in me because thou hearest them, and they pray unto me; and they pray unto me because I am with them.

23 And now Father, I pray unto thee for them, and also for all those who shall believe on their words, that they may believe in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one.

I dont get it? This is a prayer of unity. Jesus is saying all, including the 12, can be one. If your going to take this that it reflect worship then the 12 should be included in worship.

Do you ultimately worship Jehovah, the God of Abraham, Issac, Jacob, and Moses?

The BoA disagrees with you that the gods were not co-equal in creation on this earth and the heavens. The BoA says clearly that the Gods "counseled, formed, called, formed, organized, prepare, bring forth, and caused." Whether you call it assist or whatever, it does not say that.

It does not say they were â??coequalâ? either. That is your invention. The first verse of Abraham 4 reads:

And then the Lord said [to the Gods]: Let us go down. And they went down at the beginning, and they, that is the Gods, organized and formed the heavens and the earth.

That makes it plain that they were not all of equal rank. The â??Lordâ? that said to the rest â??let us go downâ? was superior in rank than they were. He took the lead, which makes Him superior to them.

I did not say they were co-equal, I said the BoA reads they were "co-equal in creation" the BoA says "...And they went down at the beginning, and they, that is the Gods, organized and formed the heavens and the earth." So what if Elohim was the leader, I know he was the head God according to LDS theology, but the BoA says the gods created the earth. The BOA says the "Gods" said "let there be light", not me, so your issue is with LDS theology not me. One of the first principles in heminutics is letting scripture interpret scripture, if two scriptures give two account s of the same doctrine or story, the one with more data is the way you interpret the scripture. The BOA adds more to the creation account than the BoMoses and the Biblical accounts.

"Psa 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God [is] holy."

There are hundreds of verses that are like this one that use the word Elohim, the word LORD here is Jehovah, so break it down and tell me what that means.

There are at least two possible answers to that. One possibility is that Jesus sometimes assumes the title of the Father, as previously explained. Another possibility is that in the Hebrew Bible Elohim is often simply used as the synonym for God; and since Jehovah is also God, there is no contradiction in calling Him Elohim.

Your saying it is OK to call Jehovah "Gods"? Remember you said JS said Elohim meant gods. And your other option makes no sense, the word for father is "Ab", not Elohim.

The pre-existence is passed. The rules that govern our salvation here and now is called the gospel. We obey the gospel laws to receive salvation and exaltation. Gospel laws are eternal, I agree. I donâ??t know what is meant by â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If by that is meant the gospel, then I would rather call it the gospel, than call it â??the laws of eternal progressionâ?. If something else is meant by that, then you have to explain to me what it means, because I honestly do not know.

This is the way I was taught it by my parents as a child and what was expounded on by my study of LDS scripture. There are certain eternal laws that all people must follow, including God. As man progresses he can not progress outside these laws. The laws of progression are as follows, intelligence with is not created but has always been, even before God existed, from intelligence a God and Goddess ( they are flesh and bone) gives birth to a person from intelligence to the 1st estate, and you are spirit children in the pre-existence with a heavenly father and mother of flesh and bone. Then one progresses for pre existence to earth and get a human body. From here it is up to you, but where you go is determined on following the laws of the gospel in order to progress to your final estate. If you look at the chart here http://www.mormonwiki.org/Eternal_progression you will see that the eternal laws are set to the charts parameters, you can not break this cycle, nor could God, he became God just like you can become god by following the laws of the gospel one can progress according to the eternal laws of progression. This is core LDS theology. So when I say that the LDS view of the nature of God is very different from the mainstream Christian view, this is part of that equation that Dan may or may not have included in is article that add the the division of our respective views of the nature of God?

Then somebody has to explain to me what it means. How do I obey â??the laws of eternal progressionâ? to be saved and exalted, if it is something other that obeying the gospel? If it is the same thing as the gospel, can somebody tell me why I should call it that, instead of calling it the gospel?

Maybe I wasn't clear, sorry. LDS theology teaches that if you obey the eternal laws of the Gospel, you can progress up the ladder of the law of eternal progression (LoEP). In other words your work gets you higher up the ladder of progession, the ladder being eternal and the only way one can move forward. The only way to become a God or be in the presence of your God is by the ladder (LoEP). If you are not obediate then your options are the two lower estates except for the SOP. I know you know this as exaltation but one can only exalt within and by these laws.

Enough for now,I'll finish up later

Take care

MG

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How on earth do you arrive at that?

What Dan has been trying to say -- and in increasingly simple language -- and that you completely fail to grasp, is that an informed opinion requires, well, information.

For all you know, Dan's article may be simply the last word on the subject, and the finest such article ever written. OTOH, for all I know, it may be a tissue of worthless nonsense. I don't know; and neither do you. Because, you see, I haven't read it; and neither have you.

Therefore, your opinion on it is utterly and completely uninformed, and your blatherings on the subject are worse than useless.

In order to have an informed opinion about Dan's paper you would have to read it.

And having read it, you would have to understand it.

But in order to do that, you'd have to be willing to reconsider your knee-jerk assumptions about the Church of Jesus Christ. It may be possible that, after such reading and reconsideration, an informed person might decide that your position is substantially correct after all; but without such reading and reconsideration, you've got nothing at all to say.

And, as the thread originator has several times politely requested, you should therefore refrain from saying anything. At all.

Frankly, I expect that if you ever do manage to find the attention span to read Dan's article, you will not substantively engage it. In any way. Rather, you will simply continue to recite your mindless mantra as if Dan's article had never been written.

On what do I base my prediction?

Simply this: a number of years ago, Dan and Stephen D. Ricks wrote a fine little book called Offenders for a Word. In that, they addressed all the major arguments used by anti-Mormons to support the accusation that Mormonism is not Christian. The book is well-researched and well-argued. IM(v)HO, it simply nails the issue.

In the years since I read it, I waited for a substantive rebuttal to come from the various anti-Mormon presses that blight the face of North America.

And I'm still waiting.

The book, and its arguments, have simply not been substantively addressed.

But has that stopped, or even softened, the continuing chorus of those who would deny the Christianity of the Latter-day Saints?

Not for a second!

Daily we are treated to dumb rednecks saying things like "Marmuns ain't Chrisjun cuz they ain't like us'n."

Perhaps, Markk, you regard yourself as uniquely qualified to address this question. If so, then I have a challenge for you: you can read Dan's book here and it won't cost you a red cent. Then you can come back and lay out your substantive arguments as to why he is wrong.

Because then you'll have something to say on this subject. Unlike the article under discussion.

But let me make this absolutely clear to you: if you fail to deal with Dan's argument, then the next time you trot out your tired and discredited "Mormons ain't Christian" claim, knowing that it has been refuted, and knowing that you have entirely failed to address it, you will be telling a lie.

Regards,

Pahoran

Hey Pahoran,

How ya doing.

Fair enough, seeing how you have read the book, start a new thread and put the top three arguments in Dan's book and I'll respond, after we get through those we can do three more. Good Idea. If Dan wants to jump in he can.

Look forward to your new thread.

Take care

Mark

John 1:12

PS. If you have paid the 7 bucks for Dan's paper on the Trinity we can do the same with that?

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