~ G O D ~


 


"We believe in God, Father of Spirits"
["Our Father Who Art in Heaven"]
~
"We believe in God's Son, Jesus Christ"
[He Is Also Jehovah, God of the Old Testament]
~
"We believe in the Holy Ghost"
[He Communes with Man, Spirit to Spirit
 and Testifies of the Father and of the Son]

prepared by Don R. Hender


    "1. We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.” ~ The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

    The very first Article of Faith, as held by the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, records the firm belief in the Holy Godhead, a threesome 'trinity' consisting of three corporally separate and distinct divine individuals, Father, Son and Holy Ghost. We know and understand that these are three distinct and separate persons, that is as Bishop Eusebius of Caesarea held, separate corporal entities each individually unto themselves, while being "united in the faith and purpose of bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." (Moses 1:39)

As our Ministering Divine immediate God, who has been called, annointed and empowered by God the Eternal Father of Spirits, we believe in and follow after God’s Son, Jesus Christ, who is the same as Jehovah. As the Firstborn spirit son of God the Father of Spirit, Jehovah was the 'Word' who was with God as stated by John the Apostle. And by his Father, the Eternal God, that Man of Righteousness, the Father of Spirits; Jehovah the son was empowered by the Father to act in the stead of the Father, and under that direction of the Father, the Holy Word, Jesus who is Jehovah created the temporal heavens and earth and all that in them are.

Thus we believe in Jesus Christ, the Holy Word who is Jehovah, who is the Firstborn of every creature in the spirit, and the Only Begotten Son in the flesh of God our Eternal Father in Heaven. He is our Lord, our God, our Savior and our Redeemer. He is our Intercessor, Mediator and Advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He has taken our sins upon himself and has suffer and died as an infinite sacrifice for sin that all men who come unto him and repents may not perish before God, but by the right of imputed righteousness bestowed by the Son's Sacrifice upon them, may be redeemed and enter into God's Kingdom.

And thus we are left to suppose that those who ignominiously proclaim otherwise know not wherewith they speak, and by their mistake they but lie in wait to deceive, for the truth is not in them. And those who proclaim that 'Mormons are not Christians' appeal only to the ignorant and bigoted who are easily led by falsehood and lies. For indeed we hold to and worship Jesus Christ, who is Jehovah, as our God and King who was the God of the Old Testament as well as the Lord of the New Testament. And in him has been intrusted the full empowerment of the 'Godhead' bodily, that by him, through him and of him, there is no other way whereby mankind can come unto God the Father and enter into the Father's Kingdom. That is Jesus/Jehovah has the power and the authority to act in the name of the Father, as though he is the Father in all things excepting that he is not the Father of Spirits. And Jesus Christ is also empowered to act even as the Holy Spirit does as, being as the Spirit of Christ. Being so empowered to so act by that divine investiture does not mean that Jesus Christ is the same being as God the Father of Spirits or even the Holy Ghost, as he is still his own personally separate and distinct entity and separate person.

Now this being said, any intelligent objectieve person who is truly enlightened upon the subject from a purely unbiased perspective and truly informed position, will not come to such an emotionally biased false 'subjective' conclusion or opinion, which is totally unsubstantiated by the true facts of the matter that Mormons are not Christians. For indeed we are. We talk of Christ. We rejoice in Christ. We preach of Christ. We prophesy of Christ. And we worship Christ who is Jesus the Lord of the New Testament as well as being our Almighty God Jehovah of the Old Testament. What more than this does any Christian? We are Christians, we believe in and follow Jesus Christ as our Ministering God who did create the heavens and the earth under the direction of his Father.

Really the only seeming difference between Mormons and Traditional Christians, is that we believe that Jesus Christ had a Father, who was his Father in all reality his literal Father, and that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. We do not believe tht in some mysterious manner he was the Father of himself. We believe that Jesus was the Firstborn of his Father in the spirit of every creature in the preexistence as written in Colossians 1:15. And we beleive that Jesus, who is the same as the Spirit God Jehovah of the Old Testament, is the literal Only Begotten Son of the Father in the flesh. For thus it says that 'God so loved the world, that he gave him only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him shouldnot perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)

Lack of Religious Tolerance

It is a poor form of Christianity, which must resort to attacking the tenants of faith and belief in Jesus Christ of another Church in order to lay claim to their own legitimacy as a Christian Faith or Religion. Such intolerance and lack of care for one's fellow man, that is another’s beliefs and convictions is not a part of the message of Jesus Christ and his gospel of love, human kindness and understanding. Rather it is part of that satanic effort to manipulate and control the souls of man by forced intrusion upon the hearts and minds of men. Christ led by example and by the invitation to ‘Come Follow Me’.  

In this, the very nature of a ‘sect’s’ proselyting efforts defines who they are.  As Latter-day Saints, we believe in the religious tolerance, which does not attack other legitimate religious sects, which do not agree with our own standards of belief. We do not believe that God is in the business of forced compliance, low attacks of insult and religious persecution in efforts of forcing what they deam as Christ's Gospel upon mankind. Rather we believe totally in the agency of man and his right to choose unencumbered, unthreatened and not coerced either verbally or physically in subjection to another. As did reign the entreated 'universal church' of the ancient era of Christian violance against other Christian followers according to their own beliefs and tenents. It is one thing to promote one’s own religious beliefs and it is quite another to go about belligerently tearing down another’s religious beliefs.

If there be religious discussions of differences they are appropriately confined to within the actions of invited debate and not forcibly mandated by public intrusions that ignores such limits of civil behavior and Christian decentcy of one towards another.  Was not the second of the great commandments to 'Love they neighbor as thy self?' What love is their attacking another mans faith in God, in Jesus Christ?

Our 11th Article of Faith so proclaims our position upon the matter.  It states:

    "We claim the privilege of worshiping the Almighty God [Jesus Christ] according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may." ~ The Articles of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech

Both Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech are First Amendment rights. Both are equally important. One should be free to state within the confines of civil decency their personal beliefs and not fear demonstrative reprisals of agression and public persecution for having such beliefs. Today we all are in danger of loosing our Religious First Amendments rights to such illegal and belligerent attacks of agression and public persectuion against having our sound and true beliefs and standards of living our religion according to our First Amendments Rights. Ought be not unite and fight against such for the benefit of us all?

Such 'rights' of the one ends were the nose of the other begins.  Where the personal beliefs as held by both the freedom of speech and the freedom to exercise religion without the threat of persecution, abuse, and even the rights of property being taken away by actual physical injustice or by that of verbal attack and protest organized to deliberately remove another's right to property and one's ability to economically live and make a living without such constitutionally illegal behaviors and judical actions of legislating from the bench is against all principles of civil and societal code of ethically treating another as one would be treated by them.

Where the rights of the one ends where the rights of another begin. Tolerance is the key to civil behavior. If one is not welcome at another's establishment then leave them alone. Go thy way and sin no more. Live your live without them. But do not infringe upon them to force them in taking away their agency of choice and rights of their own to live their religious freedom rights and also as to their rights to the use and benefit of their own property.

To immediately stand outside one’s places of exercise of freedom of speech of and of personal belief and religion and to abuse, persecute, publicly insult and illegaly have the injustice of liberal judges wrongfully extract a person's right to earn a living and to literally 'steal' their property from then, thus removing from their livelihood over a matter of constituional rights of the exercise of religious freedom is against the law even if the injustice of liberal judges do legislate from their bench illegally against the constituional division of powers for their own biased and forced beliefs upon another is total civil injustice.

If it is for the purposes of defaming, smearing or degrading to any degree another’s right either free speech and the related processes of First Amendment exercise. OR to the same defaming, smearing, or degrading to any degree another's right to religious freedom and their right to their own property control or illegally legislated from a liberal judical bench against one's First Amendment rights of exercising their guaranteed rights, then it ought not be. There is a distinct difference between the right to voice one’s belief in an act of freedom of speech and the actions of deliberately taunting, insulting and being outwardly confrontational in seeking to provoke civil unrest and disturbance. 

None of these actions can be tollerated against another. Closing down one's busienss or one's religion is hardly be considered as having one's own civil rights if it is at the loss of another's 'civil constitutional rights'. It is not preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to stand outside another establishment or operation and defame, defraud or remove another's property or livelihood. Nor is it such to illegally inforce any way of life in a manner that infringes as such upon another's legal and constitutional right just because a biased judge legistates the law from his bench of liberalism against the standards of one of a conservative or liberal mindset. Such action are solely aimed at obstruction of another’s right to freedom of unencumbered religious worship and the practice of the freedom of to exercise their religious beliefs.

It has been recently determined that the rights of protest and freedom of speech are limited by the rights of others to feel free from public persecution in relationship to racial discrimination. But what about religious discrimination either by one religion against another or even one's own belief system no matter however formed, against that whih is held by another to the extent of such illegal protests or intrutions of, against and even the removal of property of another?

  It has recently been determined that feminist protests against the Master’s Golf tournament could be removed from the immediate vicinity of that tournament by several blocks as it was so deemed to interfere with the processes of opperating and holding that tournament peacefully and without a biased opinion being imposed by others.  What about religious conferences and meetings? Or even what about one's exercise of his own religious beliefs in the manner he operates his or her business. If one's business or religion does welcome another's belief 'system' then why not just leave and go somewhere else. Why infringe and force 'your belief system upon the life and even use of property against another? Is the First Amendment rights of Freedom of the exercise of Religioun less worthy of protection against infringements and threats than a golf tournament or less equal in considerations of the effects of racial persecutions compared to religious persecutions? Or even the 'forced acceptance of any unwelcome life type in contrast to one's own standards and moral of living?

There has been a long history in the United States of turning the other way, allowing and even promoting gross levels of religious persecution to proceed against The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The early Mormon religion has been persecuted by a long list of illegal and particularly damaging events of religious bias. They have been illegally driven by mobs of lawless religious bigots from homes and properties. Their lives have not only been threatened by violence, but murder has been committed against them, which has gone unpunished. The parallels between the threats and persecutions of the blacks and other minority groups and great with those atrocities, which have been committed against the ‘Mormons.’  Thus if ‘racially motivated protests’ can be curbed in their freedom of speech right to be relegated to where they do not threaten members of a given race, then why are ugly protests of religious natures which promote this ‘anti-Mormon’ sentiment allowed to continue and to again emerge upon the very doorsteps of and against the very nature of the long persecuted religion of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints?  Are there no rights of the Freedom of Religion left in the First Amendment?  

Mormons Are Christians

In deed, it has been a matter of a slanderous accusation against The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints that we are not a ‘Christian’ religion.  Such lies of deception of other religions and sects have even gone to the extent of ‘mocking’ public protest outside our Churches and places of worship.  Such immediate protests go against our own rights to the exercise of Freedom of Religion as we are being attacked in a manner which fails to consider both our own First Amendment rights of Freedom of Speech and our own Freedom of Religion.  Does another’s First Amendment rights mean that they are allowed to disavow another of their First Amendment rights?  They directly threaten our peaceful right to free speech and freedom of religion by inordinately placing the public eye upon matters of religious rhetoric in efforts to amass religious persecution against a people who have long been the target of such religious persecutions both violent in their verbal and physical natures. They are aimed at embedding fears upon the hearts and minds of a religious group.  They attack the very foundations of that group’s rights to unmolested, unencumbered, and without persecution the right to worship God according to the First Amendments rights of all Americans.

The immediate attack is the implication that we do not believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as the Savior and Redeemer of the World, the one and only true God of Heaven and Earth. And that is exactly what we do believe.  Christ is our God, the one and only true God as so ordained and anointed by the Father, even the very Eternal God, our only means and way into heaven. As it is stated upon the Title Page of the book of scripture from which the Church receives it nick name, The Book of Mormon, it states decidedly that:

    “ . . . JESUS is the CHRIST, the ETERNAL GOD, manifesting himself unto all nations . . . .”   And we do proclaim to the world that the Book of Mormon is a ‘New Witness of Christ’ to a world which tends to not believe in God and who arts and letters of science tends to deny that God lives.  Thus in the very day that the world is generally denying Christ, we are actively proclaiming to the World that Jesus is the Christ, the Savior, the Redeemer, the anointed one, the Messiah, the one true God of Heaven and Earth.  And yet some have the audacity to state the pretence that the very Church of Jesus Christ, the one that bears his name before the world is not Christian?  And their lies of religious persecution are allowed in protest right outside our very doors of worship. What blasphemy is that? What lack of protection of one’s right to Religious Freedom is this?  And what could it be based upon other than an out and out attack upon one’s Religious Freedom of choice of religious belief?

Now true, each various sect of the Christian religions of the world do define their doctrines variously according to their own interpretations.  Some believe in infant baptism such as the Catholic Church and others do not.  Others believe in baptism by the sprinkling of water upon the person and others believe that it is to be done by total immersion into and under the water such as the Baptists Churches.

Some believe in a Holy Trinity where God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost are but one God and one Entity, and they define each according to their being but one.  Others believe that God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ are two distinct individuals and separate entities.  In fact they go so far as to point out that the God of the Old Testament is God the Father, and that Jesus Christ of the New Testament is not the God of the Old Testament, but is His Son such as the Jehovah Witnesses.  Such are the matters of differences of religious opinion of doctrine which each of the separate Christian Churches do profess.  And I suppose that based upon such varying definitions and interpretations of God, Christ and what is often referred to as the Godhead, one group of Christian sects many not consider others to be ‘true Christian’ Churches.

Certainly the Catholic Church, which hold claim to being the ‘original’ Christian Church, at least to the Western World, for there is the Greek Orthadox and other early Christian sects who might also so proclaim themselves to be, could justify their point of view that all other churches but theirs are ‘false’ and therefore ‘non-Christian.’

But for the most part, it is common sense that in general, all Churches who proclaim their belief in Christ as their object of worship, are to be considered within the definition of being a Christian Religion, define Christ and/or God as they may. And rest assured, there is a variance of opinion and interpretation upon that matter.  Some say that the resurrected Christ as Lord and God is yet but ‘Spirit.’ While others will pronouncedly proclaim that he is not a being of flesh and bones.  Such matters are of debate between the various sects of the Christian World.  Yet, when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints doth present to the world its ‘interpretations of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, we are put upon by some factions of the general ‘protestant’ Christian religions as not being a Christian Church because we don’t meet their own ‘selective’ definition of who Christ is to them?

Is it because we do not now believe that Christ is now but a spirit being? For we do proclaim that Christ is a glorified immortal resurrected being of flesh and bone as Christ himself proclaimed in the New Testament when he stated to the apostles, ‘Handle me and see, for a spirit doth not have flesh and bone as ye see me have?’

Is it because we have a ‘New Witness’ proclaiming Christ to be the Savior of the whole world in the additional book of scripture in which we believe?  Some say that no one can add to the Bible past the end of the Book of Revelations because of what that last verse states relative to just hat one single book or adding to or taking away from the single book of revelations.  The New Testament Bible at the time writing of the single book of John’s Revelations, was not even compiled as we have it today. Other, and even John the Apostle himself wrote additions to our New Testament scripture past the date of the writing of the single book of Revelations.  And they that later compiled the New Testament Bible and ‘cannonized’ what they considered to be scripture as compared to what they considered not to be scripture, did not arrange the New Testament ‘books’ in the precise chronological order in which they were written.  But since the LDS religion has additional scriptures, some tend to decry that we are not Christian for we are ‘adding’ to the Bible.  Yet they themselves will speculate about ‘missing’ books of scripture both of the Old and New Testament which has been lost to the Bible in the same breath in which they decry that nothing can be added to it based on the last statement in the single chronologically out of order book of Revelations.  So perhaps in their eyes we are not Christian because of that.

I could continue on.  But the point is, for whatever ‘pretended’ reason that those who defame the LDS Church as not being a Christian Church, would for the same logic and reason have to also eliminate any number of various other sects of Christianity for the same reason. And if their logic is applied consistently through out, they may even have to conclude themselves not to be Christian either.

Thus following this logic, some might say that the Seventh Day Adventists are not Christian because they do not worship upon the Lord’s Sabbath day of his resurrection, but have maintained the old Hebrew notion of the Seventh Day being the Lord’s day. And visa-versa, the Seventh Day Adventists could so proclaim against all other so called ‘Christian’ religions that they are not truly Christian for they do not keep the Lord’s traditional proper day of worship. And a Seventh Day Adventist who spend Saturday in New Zealand and the flies by air eastward across the international date line to another Island east of that date line can have the joy of celebrating two Sabbaths, back to back in a row all in the same week, and can gain that extra day in the process until he flies back west to New Zealand, perhaps losing one of the days of the week of choice. Perhaps Monday would be a good day to lose out of each week that way?

But the point is that to discriminate against any particular Christian sect and label them ‘non-Christian’ is nothing more than a prejudicial farce especially when the Church being so maligned carries the name of ‘The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints’ and can squarely and honestly look anyone in the eye and state that their faith is that Jesus is the Christ, the one and only true God of Heaven and Earth, the Savior, the Redeemer, and Lord of the Atonement, and that Christ is the God of their worship.  That sound pretty Christian to me.  And what does not sound Christian at all is for such of those who upon their own petty notions of detailed compliance so choose to discriminate against such a Church of Jesus Christ who does so belief as I have stated.  Now that doesn’t sound very Christian at all to me. And it lacks the tolerance and love of which Christ does teach.

Now if one wishes to consider who just might have the ‘true’ concept of Christ and His Gospel defined in their Church, then perhaps that is another question. But there are many good Christian people of any number of various other Christian Faiths, and I would certainly be the last to call them ‘non-Christian’ just because they do not believe exactly as I happen to believe under the tenants of my own Christian Religion. I might believe that they are wrong in their belief and that I am correct, but I would not state that they are not Christian or do not believe in Christ.  For I, like most others who are of differing sects an faiths, do believe my own selected Church of choice is the correct and true religion of Christ. And I do afford all men the same such freedom of religion without discriminations.  And I would certainly not attach any of them for not being Christian as some of them apparently have selected to do against myself. Let them believe and worship how, where or what they may.  And if they do follow after the grand ideals and teachings of the Holy Scriptures of Christ, all the better.  And if they do follow after Christ in a manner of honest and sincere worship, then who am I to state that they are not Christians and believers in and followers of Jesus?

But despite Christ’s own teachings against judging others, some have taken it upon themselves to judge The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  And for whatever reason they may suggest, based in whatever lie they have contrived to base their non-Christian attack upon it, they have concluded that a Church who does believe and worship Jesus as the Christ and is called after his name, the Church of Jesus Christ, is not a Christian Religion. The lack of logic in it is astounding. 

As stated, our first article of faith doeth state that:    “We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.”

WE BELIEVE IN AND WORSHIP JESUS CHRIST

Like many Christian sects, we do not believe as the Catholic believe.  We believe that God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ are two separate entities, two separate beings.  We do not believe that they are some how ‘magically’ one and the same supreme being personified as being both the father and the son in some hard to conceptualize notion of Godhood or messing of individual beings all into one singular entity.Just as a ‘team’ plays as ‘one’ in purpose to win a game, or as a corporate board of directors works as one to achieve a unity of purpose of success, or as a husband and wife work as ‘one’ in purpose of raising their children the best they can, so is God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ one in unity of purpose. Yet they are still two separate beings.  They are two individual personages.  They are in a ‘unity of the faith’ just as a single congregation of a Church becomes one united in belief and purpose and understanding and faith.  So is God the Father and Christ, His Son one and singular in purpose.

And that singular purpose in terms of their joint workings and efforts relative to this earthly estate is unified in ‘bring to past the immortality and eternal life of man.’  The unified work they are both devoted to is the redemption of mankind from the fall of Adam which leads men to the acceptance of Christ as the Lord and God of their salvation and resurrection into immortality. Certainly that is the ‘Christian’ goal and ideal which unifies all Christians, to accept Christ as the Savior of the world, the Redeemer of man.  And we as ‘Mormons’ do accept Christ as our personal Savior and Redeemer, our God and our King.

Now the details of our faith as to exactly what the roles are and whence they are played out in terms of God the Father of the spirits of men, Christ the Redeemer and Lord of the Atonement, and the workings and role of the Holy Ghost as God’s messenger spirit does differ in understanding from the various other Christian Religions.  And so does those of each and every other of the various Churches and sects.  Else why are their so many difference Christian Religion denominations?  And we certainly claim that freedom of faith and belief, as does every other Christian denomination.  And we don’t denounce the others as ‘non-Christian’ because of that difference of definition of detailed understanding.

So what beyond the understanding of the Godhead as being three distinct persons or personages might differentiate Mormons from other Christian Religions?  Well, we are not like the Jehovah Witnesses, who believe that God the Father is Jehovah of the Old Testament,  We believe as John the beloved apostle states"

    “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.  In him was life; and the life was the light of men.  And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.” (John 1:1-5)

That is, we believe that Jehovah, the God of the Old Testament was the same as Jesus Christ of the New Testament. And we place God the Father, named Elohim or Eli on the next level above the estates of this mortality.  Merely making Jehovah and Jesus Christ the same being or person, does not preclude that God the Father, Elohim and Jehovah of the Old Testament was the same being. As John the beloved states, The ‘Word’ who is Christ was with God the Father in the beginning. And Christ or Jehovah, the first born son of God the Father in our pre-mortal estate had been raised to the level of being God or a God also, like His Father.  But he was unlike His Father in that like us Jehovah was yet just a ‘Spirit Being,’ not having yet come into mortality to obtain a body of flesh and bone. Now God the Father was of that further exalted state of having already passed through ‘mortality’ and thus was upon a high level of exaltation, already being a resurrected glorified eternal being or personage of flesh and bones. And in order for Christ, our elder brother in the spirit, and the rest of us to become like God that Father, we too would have to pass through mortality and obtain our own bodies of flesh and bone as well as experiencing the growth processes of maturation of self actuation and becoming a glorified being as was our Father of our Spirits, even Elohim.

In a sense, it is like the child of a family leaving home, entering into the real world and becoming his own person of responsibility and adulthood.  In our spirit pre-existent state, we were still at home in our Father’s house, mere children and far from being fully maturated adults of responsibility.  We would all have to leave home, our Father’s immediate overwhelming influence, and prove ourselves to be grown, mature and or righteous responsibility apart and separate from His overwhelming influence and presence.  We had to leave the nest so to speak and come to this earthly estate of mortality to gain ‘experience,’ understanding, knowledge, skill, and personal ability of become a self actuated being in and of ourselves independent from our father’s and mother’s realm of existence.  Thus God the Father set out a ‘Plan of Salvation’ whereby we could leave his presence and influence and come to this ‘temporary’ or mortal estate though the fall of Adam.  And Adam fell that man might be in this state of experience and hard knocks whereby we might learn of ourselves to become self reliant, self actuated, and free to choose for ourselves having our own agency of selection beyond the presence and influence of the direct presence of God our Father of our spirits.

But since this fallen temporary mortal state was less that then eternal immortal state of perfection and righteousness of God. In order for us to be able to return to that elevated state and realm of God we would have to be redeemed.  And a Savior and Redeemer would have to be appointed, elected, selected and anointed.  And so it was.  God the Father selected his eldest spirit son, Jehovah, the most advanced of us all, to act and become the lamb of the Atonement of man.  And in that selective process, God the Father put upon Jehovah his Son the position as being the Lord, Savior, Redeemer, and God of this existence.

And thus John the Beloved continued to explain, that Jehovah was in the beginning with Elohim his Father, and under the direction of his father, Jehovah was commissioned to create this heaven and earth for the purposes of the development of God the Father’s spirit children, so that they might progress from their child like dependant state of relying upon and being in God presences to becoming self actuated being of maturity and possibly even as God the Father was Himself.  Thus we believe as man now is in this estate of evolution and maturation, so God the Father once experienced himself.  And further as God the Father is now, and has become, even so it is possible for man, his spirit sons an daughter to become like unto what he now is. And that is the great and glorified being of and exalted God of perfection.

But as stated, it was Jehovah or Jesus Christ in the spirit which under the direction of His Father created this heaven and earth. As John stated, ‘All things were made by him [The Word, even Jehovah or Jesus Christ]; and without him was not any thing made that was made.  In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”  Thus God the Father place his eldest spirit son in a position of being the God of Heaven and Earth.  And under the direction of His Father, Jehovah the Christ or the anointed one did organize this earth by the standard seven step pattern of creation into a world where Adam or Michael might come in order to bring all God’s spirit children into this mortal training ground of experience and maturation. And when the earth was prepared, God the Father and Jehovah did place Michael upon the earth and he became know as Adam. And the process was set in motion.

Jehovah was left to be the Lord God of this earth, the mediator between God the Fahter’s Heaven and this earth.  As such, Jehovah was placed as the God of this earth, its Lord, Savior and Redeemer. And it became Jehovah who was the one truth God of Heaven and Earth, which we have come to worship as Christians. Yet, unlike that other candidate for the Redeemer, who was Lucifer, Jehovah returns and gives all the glory back to His Father.

Now, Jehovah was like unto the rest of us, as he was but a being of spirit up and until he came to earth being born of Mary.  And during the Old Testament, Jehovah administered to the earth as the God of the Old Testament as a spirit being.  Now a spirit being is not so much different from our own appearance.  But the spirit is of a more pure matter and of a higher realm or sphere of existence.  Unlike the fictional contrivances of ‘ghosts,’ spirits are of physical matter and substance. And can move and manipulate things in the same manner as does any body of physical matter and substance. Yet being more pure and of a high level of existence, the spirit body is more capable in what it can do beyond what the mortal limits are of this mortal begin of substance of what we are use to. And the powers of the spirit as even are the powers of mortal man, when combined with the powers and priesthood of God, can do and perform great feats and miracles and the actual moving of mountains so to speak.  Thus Christ (the anointed one), Jehovah  did have the powers of creation held by virtue of His Fathers selection and appointment.

Now since Christ, Jehovah did administer to the earth, and having to convey the eternal nature of things and the relationship between himself and his father, Elohim, Christ became God’s advocate and representative to man by the position of ‘divine investiture.’  That is God the Father had invested in Christ, Jehovah all of his power and authority, that he might act for and in behalf of God the Father as though he where God the Father himself.  Thus just as any fully legally endowed person with power of attorney may do, Christ did speak for and in behalf of God the Father as though he were God the Father. And so in may aspects of Jehovah’s administration, he does speak as though he were God the Father in his administration to this earth.

Now there is an Official Publication of the Church that has set out the relationship between The Father and The Son entitled, ‘The Father and The Son:  A Doctrinal Exposition by the First Presidency and the  The Twelve.’  In it is established the various roles and titles held by God the Father, Elohim and His Son Jesus Christ.  From the text, ‘Articles of Faith’ by Elder Talmage, page 420, the appended notes to the chapter on the first Article of faith presents Elder Talmages introduction to the Church’s Doctrinal Expositon and then the expostion itself as note number 11 as displayed in similar fashion to how it is found there.

(ARTICLES OF FAITH, p. 420-)

                11. The Father and The Son—In the treatment of the "Personality of Each Member of the Godhead" and "Divine Attributes" no attempt has been made to segregate the references made to The Father and The Son. It is to be remembered that the Personage most generally designated in the Old Testament as God or the Lord, is He who in the mortal state was known as Jesus Christ, and in the antemortal state as Jehovah. See the author's work, Jesus the Christ, chap. 4. That Jesus Christ or Jehovah is designated in certain scriptures as the Father in no wise justifies an assumption of identity between Him and His Father, Elohim. This matter has been explained by the presiding authorities of the Church in a special publication as follows:

The Father and The Son:

A Doctrinal Exposition by The First Presidency and The Twelve

The scriptures plainly and repeatedly affirm that God is the Creator of the earth and the heavens and all things that in them are. In the sense so expressed, the Creator is an Organizer. God created the earth as an organized sphere; but He certainly did not create, in the sense of bringing into primal existence, the ultimate elements of the materials of which the earth consists, for "the elements are eternal" (D&C 93:33).

So also life is eternal, and not created; but life, or the vital force, may be infused into organized matter, though the details of the process have not been revealed unto man. For illustrative instances see Genesis 2:7; Moses 3:7; and Abraham 5:7. Each of these scriptures states that God breathed into the body of man the breath of life. See further Moses 3:19, for the statement that God breathed the breath of life into the bodies of the beasts and birds. God showed unto Abraham "the intelligences that were organized before the world was"; and by "intelligences" we are to understand personal "spirits" (Abraham 3:22, 23); nevertheless, we are expressly told that "Intelligence" that is, "the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be" (D&C 93:29).

            The term "Father" as applied to Deity occurs in sacred writ with plainly different meanings. Each of the four significations specified in the following treatment should be carefully segregated.

1.  "Father" as Literal Parent—Scriptures embodying the ordinary  signification—literally that of Parent—are too numerous and specific to require citation. The purport of these scriptures is to the effect that God the Eternal Father, whom we designate by the exalted name-title "Elohim," is the literal Parent of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and of the spirits of the human race. Elohim is the Father in every sense in which Jesus Christ is so designated, and distinctively He is the Father of spirits. Thus we read in the Epistle to the Hebrews: "Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?" (Hebrews 12:9). In view of this fact we are taught by Jesus Christ to pray: "Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name."

            Jesus Christ applies to Himself both titles, "Son" and "Father." Indeed, he specifically said to the brother of Jared: "Behold, I am Jesus Christ. I am the Father and the Son" (Ether 3:14). Jesus Christ is the Son of Elohim both as spiritual and bodily offspring; that is to say, Elohim is literally the Father of the spirit of Jesus Christ and also of the body in which Jesus Christ performed His mission in the flesh, and which body died on the cross and was afterward taken up by the process of resurrection, and is now the immortalized tabernacle of the eternal spirit of our Lord and Savior. No extended explanation of the title "Son of God" as applied to Jesus Christ seems necessary.

            2. "Father" as Creator—A second scriptural meaning of "Father" is that of Creator, e.g. in passages referring to any one of the Godhead as "The Father of the heavens and of the earth and all things that in them are" (Ether 4:7; see also Alma 11:38, 39 and Mosiah 15:4).

            With this meaning, as the context shows in every case, Jehovah who is Jesus Christ the Son of Elohim, is called "the Father," and even "the very eternal Father of heaven and of earth" (see passages before cited, and also Mosiah 16:15). With analogous meaning Jesus Christ is called "The Everlasting Father" (Isaiah 9:6; compare 2 Nephi 19:6). The descriptive titles "Everlasting" and "Eternal" in the foregoing texts are synonymous.

            That Jesus Christ, whom we also know as Jehovah, was the executive of the Father, Elohim, in the work of creation is set forth in the book Jesus the Christ, chapter 4. Jesus Christ, being the Creator, is consistently called the Father of heaven and earth in the sense explained above; and since His creations are of eternal quality He is very properly called the Eternal Father of heaven and earth.

            3. Jesus Christ the "Father" of Those Who Abide in His Gospel—A third sense in which Jesus Christ is regarded as the "Father" has reference to the relationship between Him and those who accept His Gospel and thereby become heirs of eternal life. Following are a few of the scriptures illustrating this meaning.

            And further: "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world" (John 17:20-24).

            To His faithful servants in the present dispensation the Lord has said: "Fear not, little children, for you are mine, and I have overcome the world, and you are of them that my Father hath given me" (D&C 50:41).

            Salvation is attainable only through compliance with the laws and ordinances of the Gospel; and all who are thus saved become sons and daughters unto God in a distinctive sense. In a revelation given through Joseph the Prophet to Emma Smith the Lord Jesus addressed the woman as "My daughter," and said: "for verily I say unto you, all those who receive my gospel are sons and daughters in my kingdom" (D&C 25:1). In many instances the Lord has addressed men as His sons (e.g. D&C 9:1; 34:3; 121:7).

            That by obedience to the Gospel men may become sons of God, both as sons of Jesus Christ, and, through Him, as sons of His Father, is set forth in many revelations given in the current dispensation. Thus we read in an utterance of the Lord Jesus Christ to Hyrum Smith in 1829: "Behold, I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I am the life and the light of the world. I am the same who came unto mine own and mine own received me not; But verily, verily, I say unto you, that as many as receive me, to them will I give power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on my name. Amen." (D&C 11:28-30). To Orson Pratt the Lord spoke through Joseph the Seer, in 1830: "My son Orson, hearken and hear and behold what I, the Lord God, shall say unto you, even Jesus Christ your Redeemer; The light and the life of the world; a light which shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehendeth it not; Who so loved the world that he gave his own life, that as many as would believe might become the sons of God. Wherefore you are my son." (D&C 34:1-3). In 1830 the Lord thus addressed Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon: "Listen to the voice of the Lord your God, even Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, whose course is one eternal round, the same today as yesterday, and forever. I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who was crucified for the sins of the world, even as many as will believe on my name, that they may become the sons of God, even one in me as I am one in the Father, as the Father is one in me, that we may be one" (D&C 35:1-2). Consider also the following given in 1831: "Hearken and listen to the voice of him who is from all eternity to all eternity, the Great I AM, even Jesus Christ—The light and the life of the world; a light which shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehendeth it not; The same which came in the meridian of time unto mine own, and mine own received me not; But to as many as received me, gave I power to become my sons; and even so will I give unto as many as will receive me, power to become my sons" (D&C 39:1-4). In a revelation given through Joseph Smith in March, 1831, we read: "For verily I say unto you that I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the light and the life of the world—a light that shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehendeth it not. I came unto mine own, and mine own received me not; but unto as many as received me, gave I power to do many miracles, and to become the sons of God, and even unto them that believed on my name gave I power to obtain eternal life" (D&C 45:7-8).

            A forceful exposition of this relationship between Jesus Christ as the Father and those who comply with the requirements of the Gospel as His children was given by Abinadi, centuries before our Lord's birth in the flesh: "And now I say unto you, who shall declare his generation? Behold, I say unto you, that when his soul has been made an offering for sin, he shall see his seed. And now what say ye? And who shall be his seed? Behold I say unto you, that whosoever has heard the words of the prophets, yea, all the holy prophets who have prophesied concerning the coming of the Lord—I say unto you, that all those who have hearkened unto their words, and believed that the Lord would redeem his people, and have looked forward to that day for a remission of their sins, I say unto you, that these are his seed, or they are the heirs of the kingdom of God. For these are they whose sins he has borne; these are they for whom he has died to redeem them from their transgressions. And now, are they not his seed? Yea, and are not the prophets, every one that has opened his mouth to prophesy, that has not fallen into transgression, I mean all the holy prophets ever since the world began? I say unto you that they are his seed" (Mosiah 15:10-13).

            In tragic contrast with the blessed state of those who become children of God through obedience to the Gospel of Jesus Christ is that of the unregenerate, who are specifically called the children of the devil. Note the words of Christ, while in the flesh, to certain wicked Jews who boasted of their Abrahamic lineage: "If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham. * * * Ye do the deeds of your father * * * If God were your Father, ye would love me. * * * Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do" (John 8:39, 41, 42, 44). Thus Satan is designated as the father of the wicked, though we cannot assume any personal relationship of parent and  children as existing between him and them. A combined illustration showing that the  righteous are the children of God and the wicked the children of the devil appears in the parable of the Tares: "The good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the  children of the wicked one" (Matt. 13:38).

            Men may become children of Jesus Christ by being born anew—born of God, as  the inspired word states: "He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth  f rom the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother" (1 John 3:8-10).

            Those who have been born unto God through obedience to the Gospel may by  valiant devotion to righteousness obtain exaltation and even reach the status of godhood.  Of such we read: "Wherefore, as it is written, they are gods, even the sons of God" (D&C 76:58; compare 132:20, and contrast paragraph 17 in same section; see also paragraph  37). Yet, though they be gods they are still subject to Jesus Christ as their Father in this exalted relationship; and so we read in the paragraph following the above quotation: "and they are Christ's, and Christ is God's" (76:59).

            By the new birth—that of water and the Spirit—mankind may become children of Jesus Christ, being through the means by Him provided "begotten sons and daughters unto God" (D&C 76:24). This solemn truth is further emphasized in the words of the Lord Jesus Christ given through Joseph Smith in 1833: "And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the beginning with the Father, and am the Firstborn; And all those who are begotten through me are partakers of the glory of the same, and are the church of the Firstborn" (D&C 93:21, 22). For such figurative use of the term "begotten" in application to those who are born unto God see Paul's explanation: "for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel" (1 Cor. 4:15). An analogous instance of sonship attained by righteous service is found in the revelation relating to the order and functions of Priesthood, given in 1832: "For whoso is faithful unto the obtaining of these two priesthoods of which I have spoken, and the magnifying their calling, are sanctified by the Spirit unto the renewing of their bodies. They become the sons of Moses and of Aaron and the seed of Abraham, and the church and kingdom, and the elect of God" (D&C 84:33, 34).

            If it be proper to speak of those who accept and abide in the Gospel as Christ's sons and daughters—and upon this matter the scriptures are explicit and cannot be gainsaid nor denied—it is consistently proper to speak of Jesus Christ as the Father of the righteous, they having become His children and He having been made their Father through the second birth—the baptismal regeneration.

            4. Jesus Christ the "Father" by Divine Investiture of Authority—A fourth reason for applying the title "Father" to Jesus Christ is found in the fact that in all His dealings with the human family Jesus the Son has represented and yet represents Elohim His Father in power and authority. This is true of Christ in His preexistent, antemortal, or unembodied state, in the which He was known as Jehovah; also during His embodiment in the flesh; and during His labors as a disembodied spirit in the realm of the dead; and since that period in His resurrected state. To the Jews He said: "I and my Father are one" (John 10:30; see also 17:11, 22); yet He declared "My Father is greater than I" (John 14:28); and further, "I am come in my Father's name" (John 5:43; see also 10:25). The same truth was declared by Christ Himself to the Nephites (see 3 Nephi 20:35 and 28:10), and has been reaffirmed by revelation in the present dispensation (D&C 50:43). Thus the Father placed His name upon the Son; and Jesus Christ spoke and ministered in and through the Father's name; and so far as power, authority, and Godship are concerned His words and acts were and are those of the Father.

            The ancient apostle, John, was visited by an angel who ministered and spoke in the name of Jesus Christ. As we read: "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John" (Revelation 1:1). John was about to worship the angelic being who spoke in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, but was forbidden: "And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God" (Rev. 22:8, 9). And then the angel continued to speak as though he were the Lord Himself: "And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last" (verses 12, 13). The resurrected Lord, Jesus Christ, who had been exalted to the right hand of God His Father, had placed His name upon the angel sent to John, and the angel spoke in the first person, saying "I come quickly," "I am Alpha and Omega" though he meant that Jesus Christ would come, and that Jesus Christ was Alpha and Omega.

            None of these considerations, however, can change in the least degree the solemn fact of the literal relationship of Father and Son between Elohim and Jesus Christ. Among the spirit children of Elohim the firstborn was and is Jehovah or Jesus Christ to whom all others are juniors. Following are affirmative scriptures bearing upon this great truth. Paul, writing to the Colossians, says of Jesus Christ: "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell" (Colossians 1:15-19). From this scripture we learn that Jesus Christ was "the firstborn of every creature" and it is evident that the seniority here expressed must be with respect to antemortal existence, for Christ was not the senior of all mortals in the flesh. He is further designated as "the firstborn from the dead," this having reference to Him as the first to be resurrected from the dead, or as elsewhere written "the firstfruits of them that slept" (1 Corinthians 15:20, see also verse 23); and "the first begotten of the dead" (Revelation 1:5; compare Acts 26:23). The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews affirms the status of Jesus Christ as the firstborn of the spirit children of His Father, and extols the preeminence of the Christ when tabernacled in flesh: "And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him" (Hebrews 1:6; read the preceding verses). That the spirits who were juniors to Christ were predestined to be born in the image of their Elder Brother is thus attested by Paul: "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren" (Romans 8:28, 29). John the Revelator was commanded to write to the head of the Laodicean church, as the words of the Lord Jesus Christ: "These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God" (Revelation 3:14). In the course of a revelation given through Joseph Smith in May, 1833, the Lord Jesus Christ said as before cited: "And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the beginning with the Father, and am the Firstborn" (D&C 93:21). A later verse makes plain the fact that human beings generally were similarly existent in spirit state prior to their embodiment in the flesh: "Ye were also in the beginning with the Father; that which is Spirit, even the Spirit of truth" (verse 23).

            There is no impropriety, therefore, in speaking of Jesus Christ as the Elder Brother of the rest of human kind. That He is by spiritual birth Brother to the rest of us is indicated in Hebrews: "Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people" (Hebrews 2:17). Let it not be forgotten, however, that He is essentially greater than any and all others, by reason (1) of His seniority as the oldest or firstborn; (2) of His unique status in the flesh as the offspring of a mortal mother and of an immortal, or resurrected and glorified, Father; (3) of His selection and foreordination as the one and only Redeemer and Savior of the race; and (4) of His transcendent sinlessness.

            Jesus Christ is not the Father of the spirits who have taken or yet shall take bodies upon this earth, for He is one of them. He is The Son, as they are sons and daughters of Elohim. So far as the stages of eternal progression and attainment have been made known through divine revelation, we are to understand that only resurrected and glorified beings can become parents of spirit offspring. Only such exalted souls have reached maturity in the appointed course of eternal life; and the spirits born to them in the eternal worlds will pass in due sequence through the several stages or estates by which the glorified parents have attained exaltation.

                                    THE FIRST PRESIDENCY AND THE COUNCIL
                                    OF THE TWELVE APOSTLES OF THE CHURCH
                                    OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS

Now this is our faith and belief in Christ.  It may not be exactly the same tenant by tenant as doctrinally prescribed by various other sects.  And each sect does differ.  But it is solidly founded in the belief that Jesus Christ is the Savior and Redeemer of the world and the Lord and God that we do worship.

Thus it is.  We believe in Jesus Christ, we are Christian and we attribute to him what would seem to be much more that most every other Church of Christ, with the exceptions that Christ is not actually God the Father, Elohim but by the action of ‘Divine Investiture’ acting for and in behalf of God the Father in that position as well.   And even with that divine legal right to act as and in behalf of His Father, Christ, Jehovah doth humbly yield all the glory and honor back to his and our illustrious Father of our Spirits, even Elohim. 

Christ was/is like unto us, in that he too was a spirit child, the first born, of Elohim in the spirit.  And he can rightfully be called and referred to in that since as our ‘Elder Brother.’  But unlike the rest of us, Christ was selected and anointed to be the ‘Redeemer’ of us all.  And as such, Christ has the additional distinction, among others, as being the ‘Only Begotten Son of God the Father in the Flesh.’  By whatever means it occurred, through the over shadowing powerful presence of the Holy Ghost, which is required to be upon man in order for them to withstand the presence of God, Elohim became the literal father of Jesus Christ in the Flesh.  Some may consider in their little minds what they might think to be the ‘dirty’ little aspects of those details.  Yet the scriptures speak for themselves, for by whatever means and powers that insemination occurred, Christ was born of a virgin.  And as prophesied in the Old Testament and stated in the New Testament, Mary was a virgin at the time of the birth of the baby Jesus.

    “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” ~ Isaiah 7:14

    "Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." ~ Matthew 1:22-23

    "And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms.” ~ 1 Nephi 11:20

    "And behold, he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers, she being a virgin, a precious and chosen vessel, who shall be overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God." ~ Alma 7:10

    "And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." ~ Luke 1:35

And as can be seen by this simple scriptural reference list above, our scriptures, which include both the Bible and the Book of Mormon, not only teach the same gospel doctrines about Jesus Christ the Son of God the Father, but they also confirm and prove the truth of Christ and expell andy confounding confrontations over what is meant, as in the course of 2 or more witnesses the truth is established.  So why is it that one man will attempt by the force of the measures of abusive will 'religiously persecution' and try to degrade another’s religion in a effort to compel one to believe only as he does believe? This is contrary to the exercise of liberty and freedom. And the rightful act of freedom of speech was never intended to belligerently and obnoxiously deprive another from their rights by the wrongful claims of exercising those same rights in such a fascist fashion.

rev. 3 October 2016