The God and Christ of Mormonism
What does the LDS Church teach about Jesus Christ? First of all, we have already documented that Brigham Young taught that Jesus was a spirit child of Adam and spirit brother of all humankind, as well as a brother of angels, even fallen ones—i.e., Jesus is a brother of Lucifer. Brigham further taught that Jesus was also physically a son of Adam, who, as an exalted resurrected being, had come to Mary and fathered Jesus. Brigham emphasized that Jesus was not begotten by the Holy Ghost, as the Bible says.
The LDS Church does not say anymore that Jesus is the son of Adam, both in body and spirit, but they do teach that Jesus is an elder brother of all mankind and a physical son of God the Father, who conceived Jesus “naturally”; thus Jesus was not begotten by the Holy Ghost! This teaching shows that the Jesus of the LDS Church is not “Emmanuel,” “God with us,” God who, according to the Bible (Matthew 1:23; John 1:1, 14), became a man in order to be our Redeemer. Jesus of the LDS Church is a created being who also had to be redeemed “to work out his own salvation.” Jesus of the Bible is the Creator—uncreated, eternal God, who created everything, including Lucifer (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16).
The current teachings of the LDS Church have not changed in this matter. President Ezra Taft Benson, in his book Come Unto Christ, page 4, noted:
The body in which He performed his mission in the flesh was sired by that Holy Being we worship as God, our Eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost. He is the Son of the Eternal Father. (Emphasis added)
Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, on page 742 of Mormon Doctrine, says,
God the Father is a perfected, glorified, holy Man, an immortal Personage. And Christ was born into the world as the literal Son of this Holy Being; he was born in the same personal, real, and literal sense that any mortal son is born to a mortal father. There is nothing figurative about this paternity; he was begotten, conceived and born in the normal and natural course of events, for he is the Son of God, and that designation means what it says.
In the same book, pages 546-47, McConkie says further, under the heading, “Only Begotten Son”:
Each word is to be understood literally. Only means only; Begotten means begotten; and Son means son. Christ was begotten by an Immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by their mortal fathers. (Emphasis added)
This is not what the Bible says. The Bible says that a Virgin will conceive and bring forth a Son, who is called Emmanuel, meaning “God with us” (Matthew 1:18-23) — not an elder brother with us!
The Mary of the LDS Church was not a virgin who brought forth a son, but a “wife” of the Heavenly Father whom Brigham declared and named to be Adam. LDS Apostle, Orson Pratt, explains in his doctrinal book The Seer, page 158,
The fleshly body of Jesus required a Mother as well as a Father. Therefore, the Father and Mother of Jesus, according to the flesh must have been associated together in the capacity of Husband and Wife; hence the Virgin Mary must have been for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father. Inasmuch as God was the first husband to her (Mary), it may be that He only gave her to be the wife of Joseph while in this mortal state, and that He intended after the resurrection to again take her as one of his own wives to raise up immortal spirits in eternity….(Emphasis added)
The leaders of the LDS Church have also taught that their Jesus was married and had children, and that He was even a polygamist. Again, Apostle Orson Pratt, in The Seer, page 172, declares:
The great Messiah who was the founder of the Christian religion was a Polygamist…the Messiah chose to take upon himself his seed; and by marrying many honorable wives himself, show to all future generations that he approved the plurality of Wives under Christian dispensation….The son followed the example of his Father, and became the great Bridegroom to whom kings’ daughters and many of the honorable Wives were to be married. We have also proved that both God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ inherit their wives in eternity as well as in time.
In answer to the question, “Was Jesus married?” Joseph Fielding Smith, president of the LDS Church in the 1970s, said, “Yes! but do not throw pearls to the swine!” The LDS Church believes that Jesus was married but doesn’t want to “throw pearls to the swine”—in other words, to reveal this to non-Mormons.
LDS President Gordon B. Hinckley made a statement June 4, 1998, acknowledging that he (and the LDS Church) does not believe in the same Jesus Christ as traditional Christianity. He said, “The traditional Christ of whom they [Christianity] speak is not the Christ of whom I speak. For the Christ of whom I speak had been revealed in this the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times. He, together with His Father, appeared to the boy Joseph Smith in the year 1820, and when Joseph left the grove that day, he knew more of the nature of God than all the learned ministers of the gospel of the ages” (Church News, June 20, 1998, p. 7; emphasis added).
In the LDS Church’s 147th General Conference, General Authority Bernard P. Brockbank stated that the Christ followed by the Mormons is not the Christ followed by traditional Christianity. He explains:
It is true that many of the Christian churches worship a different Jesus Christ than is worshipped by the Mormons…. (The Ensign, May 1977, p. 26; emphasis added)
In summary, the Jesus of the LDS Church is not the Jesus of the Bible. The God of the LDS Church is not the God of the Bible. Joseph Smith said that there is “a God above the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ….” In Mormon Doctrine, p. 322, we read,
If Jesus Christ was the Son of God, and…God the Father of Jesus Christ had a Father, you may suppose that he had a Father also. Where was there ever a son without a father?…Hence if Jesus had a Father, can we not believe that he [the Father] had a Father also?
In 1844, Joseph Smith, as recorded in Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 344-47, told his audience that “Every man has a natural, and, in our country, a constitutional right to be a false prophet, as well as a true one….” He continues on the next page, “I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was God from all eternity. I will refute that idea and take away the Veil, so that you may see.” He then explains, “God himself was once as we are now…and you got to learn how to be Gods yourselves…the same as all Gods have done before you…” (Emphasis added).
Mormon Gods and the “Martyrdom” of Joseph Smith
The God of the Bible says, “Is there a God beside me? Yea, there is no God; I know not any” (Isaiah 44:8). If God had a father, and he had a father, and so on, the God of the Bible surely would know that!
In the Bible, God calls us to know, to believe, and to understand who He is. God says,
Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.” (Isaiah 43:10)
To Joseph Smith and to all Mormons: the message is clear. There is no other God (or gods)—and therefore, Mormons will never become a god! Furthermore, no human being can ever “learn” how to become god, nor attain it by mystic ritual! The God of the Bible says so:
I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside Me. (Isaiah 45:5)
God tells what happens to the false prophets who try to lead people after other gods:
If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder come to pass, wherefore he spoke unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; thou shalt not hearken unto the word of that prophet, or the dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. Ye shall walk after the Lord your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him. and that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he had spoken to turn you away from the Lord your God…. (Deuteronomy 13:1-5)
It is interesting to note that within weeks after Joseph Smith had, in April 1844, preached this sermon (that men will and can become gods, and that God was not God from all eternity), Joseph was killed—or “put to death.”
Or prophetic fulfillment?
As the Orthodox Jews often say, “Coincidence is not a kosher word.”