בן אלהים ואדם

SON of ELOHIM and MAN

The Son of Gods' Participation in the Creation of Adam

 

Latter-day Saint Scripture, and a teaching of the Prophet Joseph Smith, indicate that Adam was borne an immortal son of God the Father. How then was the Pre-mortal Savior involved in the creation of Man?

 

The Prophet Joseph Smith stated,

"... Where was there ever a son without a father? And where was there ever a father without first being a son? Whenever did a tree, or anything spring into existence without a progenitor? And everything comes in this way. Paul says that which is earthly in the likeness of that which is heavenly. Hence if Jesus had a Father, can we not believe that He had a Father also? I despise the idea of being scared to death of such a doctrine, for the Bible is full of it." (History of the Church 6:476; see also Moses 6:10, 22, 28, 58-59, Revelation 1:6)

Based on scripture and the Prophet's teaching, we may conclude that Heavenly Father is also a divine Son. Moreover, we may conclude that not only do Adam's posterity have navels, but also "the firstborn, or the first man who is Adam, or first father." (Abraham 1:3-4) Its obvious that the bodies (posterity) God creates for Adam and Eve are begotten. (Luke 3:58-59, Psalm 2:7, Moses 6:28)

President Brigham Young reiterated the teaching of Joseph Smith, by stating that "Adam was made from the dust ... He was made as you and I are made, and no person was ever made upon any other principle." (Journal of Discourses, 3:319, A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, April 20, 1856)

The following translated passages about man's creation parallel each other and the Hebrew creation account found in Bereshit (Genesis) 1:26-31:

Moses 2:26-31 (June-October 1830)

Genesis 1:26-31 (KJV)

Abraham 4:26-31 (1842)

26 And I, God, said unto mine Only Begotten, which was with me from the beginning: Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and it was so. And I, God, said: Let them have dominion over the fishes of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

27 And I, God, created man in mine own image, in the image of mine Only Begotten created I him; male and female created I them.

28 And I, God, blessed them, and said unto them: Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

29 And I, God, said unto man: Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree in the which shall be the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to everything that creepeth upon the earth, wherein I grant life, there shall be given every clean herb [while the adjective "clean" is arguably a correct description of "wholesome herbs God hath ordained ..." (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 89:10), the word יֶרֶק appearing in the Hebrew text actually refers to a color, "green". See adjacent KJV and Abraham verse 30.] for meat; and it was so, even as I spake.

31 And I, God, saw everything that I had made, and, behold, all things which I had made were very good; and the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

 

26  And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

29  And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.

31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

 

26 And the Gods took counsel among themselves and said: Let us go down and form man in our image, after our likeness; and we will give them dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

27 So the Gods went down to organize man in their own image, in the image of the Gods to form they him, male and female to form they them.

28 And the Gods said: We will bless them. And the Gods said: We will cause them to be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it, and to have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

29 And the Gods said: Behold, we will give them every herb bearing seed that shall come upon the face of all the earth, and every tree which shall have fruit upon it; yea, the fruit of the tree yielding seed to them we will give it; it shall be for their meat.

30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, behold, we will give them life, and also we will give to them every green herb for meat, and all these things shall be thus organized.

31 And the Gods said: We will do everything that we have said, and organize them; and behold, they shall be very obedient. And it came to pass that it was from evening until morning they called night; and it came to pass that it was from morning until evening that they called day; and they numbered the sixth time.

 

Those who read Moses 2:26-27 (left column above) out of context, may get the impression that when God said to his pre-mortal, Only Begotten Son, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness", that mankind, male and female, came into being upon this earth right away. This interpretation seems to be encouraged by the next line which states, "and it was so."

But by comparing the parallel creation accounts, Moses 2:26 is put in perspective. The Moses 3 creation account, which comes after the announcement of mankind's creation in Moses 2, parallels the Genesis 2, and Abraham 5 creation accounts. These creation accounts challenge the idea that mankind came into being immediately after God said to his Son, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness".

One way of interpreting Moses 2:26 is to see that indeed "it was so." Mankind already existed, when God spoke the words "Let us make man ..." (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10, 3:15, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:29) It was also true that at some future time, mankind would be made in the image of Elohim upon the earth. We should also recognize that the reference to "us" in "Let us make man", includes divine beings beside the Father and the Son. The masculine plural "Elohim" can apply to an assembly of Gods and Goddesses. If a group of females includes one male, the group is referred to in the Hebrew masculine.

In Moses 3:5-7 (following the Moses 2 "Let us make man ... and it was so" announcement) we read, "... For I, the Lord God [the Eternal Elohim], created all things of which I have spoken spiritually before they were naturally upon the face of the earth ... And I the Lord God, had created all the children of men; and not yet a man to till the ground; for in heaven created I them; and there was not yet flesh upon the earth, neither in the waters, neither in the air; But I, the Lord God, spake, and there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground. And I, the Lord God, formed man from the dust of the ground [all that are born in the flesh are made of dust, Ecclesiastes 3:20; 12:7, Psalm 139:15-16, Job 34:14-15, Jacob 2:21], ... and man became a living soul, the first flesh upon the earth [local land, region], the first man also; nevertheless, all things [of which God spake in Moses 2, including the declared creation of  mankind] were before created; but spiritually were they created and made according to my word."

In the KJV, the title "LORD God" is a substitute for the sacred Hebrew title that appears in Torah. This sacred title is equivalent to, "Jehovah (the Eternal) Elohim"; and should be recognized as a title of God the Father, and the Son. The Son speaks as the investiture of the Father. (Moses 1:31-32; 6:57; 7:35) The name of the Son is the name of the Father. (Proverbs 30:4, John 5:43)

Its true that, as the Apostle Paul points out, "things which are seen were not made of things which do appear" (Hebrews 11:1-3, Romans 1:20; 4:17) but, the spiritual creation announced in Moses 2 (paralleling Genesis 1, and Abraham 4) is not an account of the material formation of pre-mortal spirits. The act of announcing the future existence of created things by the word of divine power, qualifies as spiritual creation. In other words, to declare that a thing will be by the word of God's spirit, is itself an act of creation. This does not mean that every creation comes into being the instant the Gods declare it shall be. Nor does it mean that prior to a divine announcement, such created things did not already exist somewhere in the created universe. (Moses 6:51) Scripture explains:

"For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it." (Isaiah 55:9-11, KJV)

"... as the words have gone forth out of my mouth even so shall they be fulfilled, that the first shall be last, and that the last shall be first in all things whatsoever I have created by the word of my power, which is the power of my Spirit. For by the power of my Spirit created I them; yea, all things both spiritual and temporal— First spiritual, secondly temporal, which is the beginning of my work; and again, first temporal, and secondly spiritual, which is the last of my work— Speaking unto you that you may naturally understand; but unto myself my works have no end, neither beginning; but it is given unto you that ye may understand, because ye have asked it of me and are agreed. Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father, whom I created." LDS Doctrine and Covenants 29:30-34

In the Genesis 1 creation account, the voice of Elohim speaks in the third person. In Moses 2, God speaks in the first person directly to Moshe (Moses). Even so, the Moses 2 creation account parallels Genesis 1, and may even be seen as an inspired, rewriting, and augmentation of King James Genesis 1. The book of Moses creation accounts are the result of the Prophet's inspired correction and amplification of accounts appearing in the available King James Bible. By comparison, the Abraham 4 creation account, is in many ways closer to what the Hebrew Bereshit 1 creation account actually says, or suggests. By the time the Abraham 4 creation account was published, the Prophet had obtained some understanding of Hebrew. The influence of his training is manifest in the Book of Abraham (1842).

In the Abraham 4 creation account, the Gods counsel among themselves to form (future tense) mankind in their likeness and image. The reader will note that the material creation of Adam does not take place until Abraham 5 (See Abraham 5:1-7), which, like Genesis 2, and Moses 3, contains a separate creation account. Genesis 2, Moses 3 and Abraham 5 present the garden creation story. Genesis 2 therefore contains a more local, formative creation account, compared to the spiritual, declarative creation of Genesis 1, Moses 2 and Abraham 4.

The Abraham 4 creation account states that the Gods came down and formed an empty and desolate earth. (Abraham 4:1-2) Then, during enumerated periods of time, the Gods declared, or ordered specific things to come about in the future. Things so ordered did not come about right away. But "the Gods watched those things which they had ordered until they obeyed." (Abraham 4:18) Later, the Gods came down to "organize man in their own image ..." (Abraham 4:26-27) The Gods declared "We will do [future tense] everything that we have said, and organize them ..." (Abraham 4:31) The account described in Abraham 5:1-3 indicates that as the declared creation spanned six times, or periods, so the work of a corporeal creation would occur during six periods, and conclude with a Sabbath. This does not mean that events during the six days of corporeal creation had to exactly match the sequence of announced events of the spiritual, declarative creation.

Abraham 5 then relates that "...the Gods came down and formed these the generations of the heavens and the earth, when they were formed in the day that the Gods formed the earth and the heavens [which can be interpreted to refer to a local land and sky], According to all that which they had said ... when they had counseled to do them, and had not formed a man to till the ground." (Abraham 5:4-5)

There is therefore no contradiction in the fact that the actual carrying out of material creation follows, in many cases, different ordinances than outlined in the spiritual, declarative creation accounts of LDS Scripture (Genesis 1, Moses 2, Abraham 4).

Much perceived conflict between Bereshit (Genesis) 1 and the ongoing discoveries of modern Science, vanish with the understanding that Torah says something quite different than is commonly interpreted. Almost all translations of Bereshit (Genesis) 1 impose preconceived ideas about creation - ideas that are not clearly asserted in the Hebrew text.

So what does Bereshit (Genesis) 1 actually tell us? The Hebrew tells how Elohim (unified Gods) at specific periods of time called days, declare that certain things would be, and then affirm that in fact such things already were. Creation therefore is an ongoing, eternal activity of the Elohim, in a universe (multiverse) without absolute beginning. In short, though finite creations come and go, there never was a time when there were no creations (Moses 1:37-39), because there never was a time when there was no creator. (Psalm 90:1-2) What follows is a most revealing, direct translation of Bereshit (Genesis) 1, with commentary in light blue:

 

Genesis Chapter 1 בְּרֵאשִׁית

א  בְּרֵאשִׁית, בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים, אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם, וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ.

1 In the a [no explicit definite article “the”] beginning [same Hebrew expression as in relative beginnings; e.g. Jeremiah 26:1; 28:1] God Elohim [Gods speaking/acting as one] created the heaven heavens (“ha-shamayim”) and the earth the land (“ha-arets”).

ב  וְהָאָרֶץ, הָיְתָה תֹהוּ וָבֹהוּ, וְחֹשֶׁךְ, עַל-פְּנֵי תְהוֹם; וְרוּחַ אֱלֹהִים, מְרַחֶפֶת עַל-פְּנֵי הַמָּיִם.

2 Now And (But) the earth land she was unformed waste (“tohu”) and void empty (“vohu”, ruined) [not necessarily inferring a nebulous mass, but a wasteland, e.g. Deuteronomy 32:10, Job 12:24, Psalm 107:40, Jeremiah 4:23-26, Isaiah 34:11], and darkness was upon the a face of the a deep; and the a spirit (wind) of God Elohim, she hovered (moved gently) over the face of the waters.

ג  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, יְהִי אוֹר; וַיְהִי-אוֹר.

3 And God Elohim said [masculine singular voice of El Elyon, “the Most High God”, Genesis 14:19, 22, Deuteronomy 10:17, Psalm 83:18, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 121:32]: 'Let there There (He) will be light.' And (But) there (he) was light. [Letters connoting the sacred name of the Eternal, the Tetragrammaton (commonly mispronounced “Jehovah”) can be seen in the Hebrew expressions of verse 3. The sacred name of the Eternal Elohim can be interpreted to be a consolidation of the words “He will be and He was: יהיויהי”.

Verse 3 is key to understanding the declarative nature of the Hebrew Genesis 1 creation. The text is not necessarily saying that non-existent creations came into being the instant that the Elohim declared them to be. The text can be interpreted to mean that created things already existed somewhere in an endless creators’ universe, and that the act of creation is eternal, cyclical, and ongoing (Psalm 104:29-30) - without absolute beginning. A cycle of creation then begins with a spiritual declaration of things that will be, and an affirmation of things that were. Ecclesiastes 1:9-10; 3:15]

ד  וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת-הָאוֹר, כִּי-טוֹב; וַיַּבְדֵּל אֱלֹהִים, בֵּין הָאוֹר וּבֵין הַחֹשֶׁךְ.

4 And God Elohim saw (observed) the light (“ha-or”), that it for he was good; and God Elohim divided between the light from and between the darkness (“ha-hoshekh”).

ה  וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לָאוֹר יוֹם, וְלַחֹשֶׁךְ קָרָא לָיְלָה; וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם אֶחָד.  {פ}

5 And God Elohim called to the light Day (“yom”), and to the darkness He called Night (“laylah”). And there (he) was evening and there (he) was morning, one day. {P}

ו  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, יְהִי רָקִיעַ בְּתוֹךְ הַמָּיִם, וִיהִי מַבְדִּיל, בֵּין מַיִם לָמָיִם.

6 And God Elohim said: ''Let there There (He) will be a firmament (“raqia”) in the midst of the waters, and let it he will be a divide division the between waters (“mayim”) from to the waters.' [Abraham 2:16]

Magnetosphere

A real raqia (heavenly expanse) is the atmosphere and magnetosphere, which help shield the planet from the harsh effluences ("waters") of space.

ז  וַיַּעַשׂ אֱלֹהִים, אֶת-הָרָקִיעַ, וַיַּבְדֵּל בֵּין הַמַּיִם אֲשֶׁר מִתַּחַת לָרָקִיעַ, וּבֵין הַמַּיִם אֲשֶׁר מֵעַל לָרָקִיעַ; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

7 And (But)  God Elohim made the firmament, and divided the waters which were from under to the firmament  from and between the waters which were from above to the firmament; and it he was so.

ח  וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לָרָקִיעַ, שָׁמָיִם; וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם שֵׁנִי.  {פ}

8 And God Elohim called the firmament Heaven Heavens. And there (he) was evening and there (he) was morning, a second day.  [Abraham facsimile No. 1, Fig. 12] {P}

ט  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, יִקָּווּ הַמַּיִם מִתַּחַת הַשָּׁמַיִם אֶל-מָקוֹם אֶחָד, וְתֵרָאֶה, הַיַּבָּשָׁה; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

9 And God Elohim said: 'Let the waters from under the heaven heavens they will be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land she will appear.' And (But) it he was so.

י  וַיִּקְרָא אֱלֹהִים לַיַּבָּשָׁה אֶרֶץ, וּלְמִקְוֵה הַמַּיִם קָרָא יַמִּים; וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים, כִּי-טוֹב.

10 And God Elohim called to the dry land (“yabashah”) Earth Land (“erets”), and to the gathering together of the waters called He Seas (“yamim”); and God Elohim saw (observed) that for it he was good.

יא  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, תַּדְשֵׁא הָאָרֶץ דֶּשֶׁא עֵשֶׂב מַזְרִיעַ זֶרַע, עֵץ פְּרִי עֹשֶׂה פְּרִי לְמִינוֹ, אֲשֶׁר זַרְעוֹ-בוֹ עַל-הָאָרֶץ; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

11 And God Elohim said: 'Let the earth The land she will put forth grass, herb yielding seed, and fruit-tree bearing fruit after its his kind, wherein is the seed thereof (in him), upon the earth land.' And (But) it he was so.

יב  וַתּוֹצֵא הָאָרֶץ דֶּשֶׁא עֵשֶׂב מַזְרִיעַ זֶרַע, לְמִינֵהוּ, וְעֵץ עֹשֶׂה-פְּרִי אֲשֶׁר זַרְעוֹ-בוֹ, לְמִינֵהוּ; וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים, כִּי-טוֹב.

12 And the earth land brought forth grass, herb yielding seed after its their kind, and tree bearing fruit, wherein is the seed thereof (in him), after its his kind; and God Elohim saw that for it he was good.

יג  וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם שְׁלִישִׁי.  {פ}

13 And there was evening and there was morning, a third day. {P}

יד  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, יְהִי מְאֹרֹת בִּרְקִיעַ הַשָּׁמַיִם, לְהַבְדִּיל, בֵּין הַיּוֹם וּבֵין הַלָּיְלָה; וְהָיוּ לְאֹתֹת וּלְמוֹעֲדִים, וּלְיָמִים וְשָׁנִים.

14 And God Elohim said: 'Let there  There (He) will be lights luminaries (“m’orot”) in the firmament of the heaven heavens to divide between the day from and between the night; and let them they will be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years;

טו  וְהָיוּ לִמְאוֹרֹת בִּרְקִיעַ הַשָּׁמַיִם, לְהָאִיר עַל-הָאָרֶץ; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

15 and let them they will be for lights luminaries (“m’orot” spelled with a vav or nail, ו) in the firmament of the heaven heavens to give light upon the earth land.' And (But) it he was so. [There were lights in the heavens already]

טז  וַיַּעַשׂ אֱלֹהִים, אֶת-שְׁנֵי הַמְּאֹרֹת הַגְּדֹלִים:  אֶת-הַמָּאוֹר הַגָּדֹל, לְמֶמְשֶׁלֶת הַיּוֹם, וְאֶת-הַמָּאוֹר הַקָּטֹן לְמֶמְשֶׁלֶת הַלַּיְלָה, וְאֵת הַכּוֹכָבִים.

16 And (But) God Elohim made the two great lights luminaries: the greater light luminary to rule (regulate) the day, and the lesser light luminary to rule (regulate) the night; and the stars (“ha-kokhavim”). [LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:7-9]

יז  וַיִּתֵּן אֹתָם אֱלֹהִים, בִּרְקִיעַ הַשָּׁמָיִם, לְהָאִיר, עַל-הָאָרֶץ.

17 And God Elohim set them in the firmament of the heaven heavens to give light shine upon the earth land,

יח  וְלִמְשֹׁל, בַּיּוֹם וּבַלַּיְלָה, וּלְהַבְדִּיל, בֵּין הָאוֹר וּבֵין הַחֹשֶׁךְ; וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים, כִּי-טוֹב.

18 and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness; and God Elohim saw (observed) that for it he was good.

יט  וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם רְבִיעִי.  {פ}

19 And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day. {P}

כ  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים--יִשְׁרְצוּ הַמַּיִם, שֶׁרֶץ נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה; וְעוֹף יְעוֹפֵף עַל-הָאָרֶץ, עַל-פְּנֵי רְקִיעַ הַשָּׁמָיִם.

20 And God Elohim said: 'Let the The waters they will swarm with swarms a swarm of a living creatures soul, and let fowl a winged creature he will fly above over the earth land in the open upon a face of the firmament of heaven the heavens.'

כא  וַיִּבְרָא אֱלֹהִים, אֶת-הַתַּנִּינִם הַגְּדֹלִים; וְאֵת כָּל-נֶפֶשׁ הַחַיָּה הָרֹמֶשֶׂת אֲשֶׁר שָׁרְצוּ הַמַּיִם לְמִינֵהֶם, וְאֵת כָּל-עוֹף כָּנָף לְמִינֵהוּ, וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים, כִּי-טוֹב.

21 And (But) God Elohim created the great sea-monsters (“ha-taninim”, the dragons), and every living creature that creepeth (e.g. reptiles), wherewith the waters swarmed, after its their kind kinds, and every winged fowl flying creature after its their kind; and God Elohim saw (observed) that for it he was good.

כב  וַיְבָרֶךְ אֹתָם אֱלֹהִים, לֵאמֹר:  פְּרוּ וּרְבוּ, וּמִלְאוּ אֶת-הַמַּיִם בַּיַּמִּים, וְהָעוֹף, יִרֶב בָּאָרֶץ.

22 And God Elohim blessed them, saying: 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl the flying creature, he will multiply in the earth land.'

כג  וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם חֲמִישִׁי.  {פ}

23 And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day. {P}

כד  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, תּוֹצֵא הָאָרֶץ נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה לְמִינָהּ, בְּהֵמָה וָרֶמֶשׂ וְחַיְתוֹ-אֶרֶץ, לְמִינָהּ; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

24 And God Elohim said: 'Let the earth The land she will bring forth the living creature soul after its her kind, cattle mute beasts (“behemah”, e.g. quadrupeds), and creeping thing, and beast his wildlife of the earth land after its her  kind.' And it he was so.

כה  וַיַּעַשׂ אֱלֹהִים אֶת-חַיַּת הָאָרֶץ לְמִינָהּ, וְאֶת-הַבְּהֵמָה לְמִינָהּ, וְאֵת כָּל-רֶמֶשׂ הָאֲדָמָה, לְמִינֵהוּ; וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים, כִּי-טוֹב.

25 And (But) God Elohim made the beast wildlife of the earth land after its her kind, and the cattle mute beast after their her kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the ground after its their kind; and God Elohim saw (observed) that for it he was good.

כו  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, נַעֲשֶׂה אָדָם בְּצַלְמֵנוּ כִּדְמוּתֵנוּ; וְיִרְדּוּ בִדְגַת הַיָּם וּבְעוֹף הַשָּׁמַיִם, וּבַבְּהֵמָה וּבְכָל-הָאָרֶץ, וּבְכָל-הָרֶמֶשׂ, הָרֹמֵשׂ עַל-הָאָרֶץ.

26 And God Elohim said: 'Let us We will make man (“adam”, mankind) in our image, after our likeness; and we will let them [“adam” is here considered plural, Moses 1:34, Genesis 5:2] have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl flying creature of the air heavens, and over the cattle mute beast, and over all the earth land, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth land.'

כז  וַיִּבְרָא אֱלֹהִים אֶת-הָאָדָם בְּצַלְמוֹ, בְּצֶלֶם אֱלֹהִים בָּרָא אֹתוֹ:  זָכָר וּנְקֵבָה, בָּרָא אֹתָם.

27 And (But) God Elohim created the man (“ha-adam”) in His own image, in the image of God Elohim created He him; male and female created He them.

כח  וַיְבָרֶךְ אֹתָם, אֱלֹהִים, וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם אֱלֹהִים פְּרוּ וּרְבוּ וּמִלְאוּ אֶת-הָאָרֶץ, וְכִבְשֻׁהָ; וּרְדוּ בִּדְגַת הַיָּם, וּבְעוֹף הַשָּׁמַיִם, וּבְכָל-חַיָּה, הָרֹמֶשֶׂת עַל-הָאָרֶץ.

28 And God Elohim blessed them; and God Elohim said unto them: 'Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth land, and subdue it her; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl flying creature of the air heavens, and over every living thing that creepeth upon the earth land.'

כט  וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים, הִנֵּה נָתַתִּי לָכֶם אֶת-כָּל-עֵשֶׂב זֹרֵעַ זֶרַע אֲשֶׁר עַל-פְּנֵי כָל-הָאָרֶץ, וְאֶת-כָּל-הָעֵץ אֲשֶׁר-בּוֹ פְרִי-עֵץ, זֹרֵעַ זָרַע:  לָכֶם יִהְיֶה, לְאָכְלָה.

29 And God Elohim said: 'Behold, I have given to you [plural] every herb yielding seeding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth land, and every all the tree, in which in him is the fruit of a tree yielding seeding seed--to you it he shall be for food;

ל  וּלְכָל-חַיַּת הָאָרֶץ וּלְכָל-עוֹף הַשָּׁמַיִם וּלְכֹל רוֹמֵשׂ עַל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר-בּוֹ נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה, אֶת-כָּל-יֶרֶק עֵשֶׂב, לְאָכְלָה; וַיְהִי-כֵן.

30 and to every beast all wildlife of the earth land, and to every fowl flying creature of the air heavens, and to everything all that creepeth upon the earth land, wherein there is in him a living soul, [I have given] every green herb for food.' And it he was so.

לא  וַיַּרְא אֱלֹהִים אֶת-כָּל-אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה, וְהִנֵּה-טוֹב מְאֹד; וַיְהִי-עֶרֶב וַיְהִי-בֹקֶר, יוֹם הַשִּׁשִּׁי.  {פ}

31 And God Elohim saw (observed) everything all that He had made, and, behold, it he was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day [Note the definite article “the” in “the sixth day”, unlike previous days of annunciated creation]{P}

The participation of the Son of Elohim in the creation of adam (mankind) mentioned in Moses 2:26-27, is clearly the same participation outlined in Bereshit (Genesis) 1:26-27. The Son of Elohim participated by joining in a spiritual announcement with other Gods; declaring by the word of power, mankind to be created, and affirming that mankind was in fact already created. That is, the Son of Elohim joined in the council of Elohim, who announced that mankind would also be made (in the future) in the image of the Gods. The image of the Gods, involved the image of "the Only Begotten". (Bereshit (Genesis) 22:2) This image already existed before the world was. (Ether 3:14-16) Therefore it was and is appropriate to say, "it was so". (Moses 2:26) The Son of Elohim would become the Only Begotten, in the sense that he would be the Only Begotten of God the Father born in mortality. Scripture makes clear that God has other begotten sons and daughters, e.g. LDS Doctrine and Covenants 76:23-24 These are "benai ha-Elohim" mentioned in Hebrew scripture, e.g. Job 38:7.

The Spirit of the Eternal as Creator of Ongoing Creation

The Eternal is not a one time creator. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 29:30-34) Creation is an ongoing occupation of the Elohim, who are also called "Adonai" (literally "my Lords", Bereshit (Genesis) 18:2-3). They are the one true God(s) of the Universe. (Psalm 86:8-12) Presiding over creation is the Order of El Elyon, the Most High God bearing the name of "the LORD" (KJV) - the Eternal. (Bereshit (Genesis) 14:19, 22, Psalm 7:17; 83:18, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 121:28-32)

Early in Hebrew scripture, we learn that the Eternal is one of the names, or titles of Elohim. (Bereshit (Genesis) 2:4)

"Behold, I am God; Man of Holiness is my name, Man of Counsel is my name; and Endless and Eternal is my name, also." (Moses 7:35)

It becomes clear that these are titles of God Father when we recall that:

"...in the language of Adam, Man of Holiness is his name, and the name of his Only Begotten is the Son of Man." (Moses 6:57)

In English, the sacred name of the Eternal is pronounced "Jehovah"; which is a standardized, but relatively recent construct of the ancient name. LDS scripture makes clear that the Eternal (Jehovah) is one of the names of God the Father, the Most High God. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 109:29-34; 121:32 see also Proclamation of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, April 6, 1845) God the Father bestowed his everlasting name on his Son. (John 5:17-21; 43) In this name, his Father's name, the Son, repeats, embodies, and carries out the word of God, as creator. (Psalm 33:6-7; 103:20, John 1:1-4, Isaiah 55:11, Hebrews 11:3)

The Son of Elohim, as the Anointed (Messiah), is associated with the Spirit of the Eternal (Jehovah). (Isaiah 61:1)

God is a spirit, an intelligence who dwells in separate and distinct tabernacles throughout the created universe. (John 4:24, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:35) The omnipresent power and intelligence of the Eternal (Jehovah), also referred to in LDS Scripture as "the light of Christ", proceeds "forth from the presence of God to fill the immensity of space". (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:12) This spiritual power brings about, and sustains all creation. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:6-13)

The Spirit of the Eternal (Jehovah) therefore, is involved in the processes of all life, including the development of the unborn. (Psalm 139:1-18; 104:30; 100:3) The Spirit of the Eternal thus participates in the creation of Man from the elements. The Spirit of "Jehovah" participated in the inception, gestation, birth and maturation of the immortal man we typically think of as "Adam", and all his posterity. (Moses 6:28)

Adam was born an immortal son of Adam Qodesh (Man of Holiness), and the Goddess “Havah” (חוה, Mother of all living). The spelling of her name is somewhat similar to that of the Eternal (יהוה, Jehovah). Heavenly Fathers and Mothers as couples constitute "Elohim" (Gods who are one, Genesis 2:24). They are also respectively resurrected Adams and Eves of worlds without end.

As explained, the "first" creative act commencing the creation of mankind, was to declare creation that would be, by the word of God. Genesis 1, Moses 2, and Abraham 4 all contain accounts of this declarative creation; commonly misinterpreted as outlining the order of physical creation of all life on this planet. At a later time, the actual development of the corporeal body of Adam was guided, and guarded by the Spirit of the Eternal, the same Spirit referred to by westerners as "Jehovah". 

The materials that went into the construction of the body of Adam in the womb, came from things grown in the soil of an American garden. (Alma 42:2, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 117:8) These were elements of "dust" taken into the persons of Adam's divine parents, and later assimilated directly by the young Adam, into his growing body. As an adult, Adam was placed eastward in the Mesopotamian garden (Genesis 2:8-14), which was planted by the Gods in the well watered plain "eastward in Eden". It was there that the Man and his wife (Havah, named after the Mother Goddess) transgressed and were expelled, with other forms of Edenic life, into the very old, blood soaked world in which we now live. They were sent forth from the eastern garden, and ultimately came to "till the ground, from whence they were taken-" in North America. (Alma 42:2) See NOAH'S VOYAGE from AMERICA.

It is common to think that this earth is the earth referred to in the Genesis 1 account. Indeed, the Genesis 1 declarative creation is general enough to apply to this earth. But there is another material world, that was formed by Gods, who at the time were pure spirit beings. This other created earth is superposed with our dreary, blood soaked planet. A nexus, or connection was made between that material world (earth), and the protected gardens (one in North American and the other in Mesopotamia) stationed in this world. The order of material organization of the unseen earth followed somewhat different ordinances than the sequence outlined in the Genesis 1, Moses 2, Abraham 4 declarative creation accounts. The order of physical creation of the unseen earth followed the order of ordinances of the Holy Priesthood.

Mankind was not found on the unseen earth, nor in the protected garden lands (Moses 5:4) prior to the visitation of resurrected Elohim. (Moses 3:7) On the other hand, wild species of humanoids may have already been present, and struggling to survive, in the dreary world into which mortal Adam and Eve were driven. The divine plan was to elevate, and save the wild which would become intermingled with the fallen godlike species. (Genesis 3:22-23, Romans 11:17-18)

The Messiah as Everlasting Father

In his role as Savior, the resurrected Son of Elohim has become Father to all those who are born anew. These are they who become new creatures through the action of the Holy Spirit in the inner man, in the New and Everlasting Covenant of Messiah. (Isaiah 9:6, Ephesians 3:16, Moses 6:65) The Messiah's atonement makes this rebirth, this new creation possible. The Messiah's children include not only the literal posterity of his body (Genesis 1:28, Psalm 45:9-16), but all those who are spiritually begotten through him in the New and Everlasting Covenant. (Isaiah 53:10-12, Mosiah 15:10-13, Jeremiah 31:31-33) These become members of the covenant body of the Firstborn. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:21-22; 76:54-58)

"... no more worthy to be called thy son." (Luke 15:21)

The idea that every human being is a child of God has become a popular generalization among Mormons (those who accept as doctrine, ideas that don't necessarily square with LDS Scripture; 1 Corinthians 11:19). "Latter-day Saints see all people as children of God in a full and complete sense; they consider every person divine in origin, nature, and potential. ... Just as a child can develop the attributes of his or her parents over time, the divine nature that humans inherit can be developed to become like their Heavenly Father's. ... Men and women have the potential to be exalted to a state of godliness" ("Becoming Like God," Gospel Topics, topics.lds.org)

The effects of the Fall of Adam, and the need for Messiah's Atonement are not explicitly mentioned in the above citation from New Testament 2019, Come Follow Me- For Sunday School, pg. 96. One could get the impression that human beings can somehow evolve into becoming like God, that the potential is all within mortal mankind (natural men and women) to do so. The idea that human beings "have the potential to be exalted to a state of godliness" risks over generalizing their potential. It is sort of like saying that the potential for a forest fire is in the wood. But fuel alone is not sufficient to start a blaze. An oxidizer (e.g. air) is needed, and an ignition source. The scriptural truth is, mortal man cannot save himself. 

It is scripturally defensible, and true that every human being was originally a spirit child of God. (Hebrews 12:9, Moses 6:51, Abraham 3:19-22) Notwithstanding the Fall, "God" (El) is "the God of the spirits of all flesh ..." (Numbers 16:22) In other words, the "LORD" (Jehovah, the Eternal) "is the God of the spirits of all flesh" (Numbers 27:16) Scripture further states, "Doubtless thou art our father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not: thou, O LORD [Jehovah, the Eternal], art our father, our redeemer; thy name is from everlasting." (Isaiah 63:16)

The seer Asaph wrote, "I have said, Ye are gods [elohim]; and all of you are children of the Most High [Elyon]. But ye shall die like men [adam], and fall like one of the princes." (Psalm 82:6-7; words in italics are not literally present in the Hebrew text)

These words could have been spoken to certain children of the Most High before they became mortal. Consider for instance YehezqEl (Ezekiel) 28:2, 12-19, in connection with Abraham 3:23, and Psalm 82:1.

Granted, we were all once spirit children of God, but the question should be asked, what are we now? Mal'akhi (Malachi) asked, "Have we not all one father? hath not one God created us? why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother, by profaning the covenant of our fathers?" (Malachi 2:10)

The Savior did not classify all humanity as "children of God", but was more thoughtful, and specific in his use of this title. (Matt 5:9, John 8:32-44) The Savior, for instance, distinguished between being of the seed of Avraham (Father of multitudes, Exalted Father), and truly being children of Abraham, and of God. Compare his teaching with Paul's in Romans 9:7-8. In fact, the Savior made it clear that some human beings are the children of the enemy of God. (1 John 3:10, see also Alma 5:25, 39-41) According to the Savior, some who were the seed of Abraham were nevertheless children of the devil. Likewise, being "the offspring of God" (Acts 17:28-29) is not necessarily equivalent to being children of God. (1 Nephi 14:3)

The scriptures teach that since the transgression of Adam, our natures have turned from the divine. (Isaiah 53:6) Whatever higher nature persists with our spirit (Romans 2:14-15), human nature, "the flesh" of mortality, invites spiritually corrupting influences that are carnal, sensual, and devilish. (2 Nephi 9:8-9) The outward "image of God" seen in the carnal natural man is therefore no sure sign that he is a child of God. (Moses 8:20-21) Outward, physical appearances are no sure witness that we have the countenance of the Son of God, "his image" renewed in us. (1 Corinthians 15:44-50, 2 Corinthians 3:17-18; 4:4, 11, 16) The image and countenance of the Only Begotten, witnesses that we have been transformed to become again the children of "the very Eternal Father". (Alma 5:14, Moses 5:12-13, 21-22, Mosiah 5:7; 16:15, Alma 11:38-39)

Scripture states, "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." (John 1:12-13) If every human being is a child of God, why the need for divine power to become something we already are?

Immortal Adam was begotten in the image of his Father and was truly like God - answering the question posed by his pre-edenic title "Mi-kha-El?" (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 27:11; 107:54) As an immortal son of God, Adam was in the image of the Only Begotten. (Luke 3:38, Moses 2:27; 6:22) In the beginning, the spirits of all men were created in the image of God. (Ether 3:14-16) As a spirit being, Michael was numbered among the Gods who organized a world from chaotic matter. Not as yet possessing the knowledge of good and evil, Adam did not sin in the eastern garden, but transgressed. (Romans 3:20; 5:13-14; 7:7, Alma 29:5, James 4:17) Even though he did not sin, there were, nevertheless, real consequences to Adam's transgression. His transgression brought changes to his person. Adam became mortal. (Luke 15:24) Even Adam needed to be reborn, and become a son of God again. (Moses 6:64-68)

Thus the Apostle Paul defines "the sons of God" (sons includes daughters) as those who are "led by the Spirit of God". (Romans 8:14-17) Paul's definition of "the children of God" who "receive the Spirit of Adoption" does not include every human being. If we wish to follow the doctrine of scripture, we should be careful to avoid classifying the carnal "natural man" as a child of God. (Mosiah 3:19) We become children of God again by becoming born again of the Spirit. (Mosiah 27:25, 2 Corinthians 6:17-18)

"... saviors shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau [Idumea] ..." (Obadiah 1:21)

The word of the LORD (the Eternal) through the prophet Yesha'Yahu (Isaiah)  proclaimed, "... there is no God [literally Gods, Elohim] beside me; a just God [El] and a Saviour [Moshia]; there is none beside me." (Isaiah 45:21, 2 Samuel 7:22; words in italics are not explicitly present in the Hebrew text) And yet other scriptures speak of "saviours" (literally moshiim, the plural of moshia). (Obadiah 1:21) How can this be? How can there be only one Moshia (Savior; there is no capitalization in Hebrew) and yet many moshiim (saviors)?

The Eternal moshiim are one. (John 17:18-21) Yes, there are many saviors - saviors of individuals, saviors of peoples, and of worlds. The Eternal as Savior, is both personal and omnipresent. The personal and omnipresent character of the universal Savior brings to mind the fact that light, and matter manifest both particle, and omnipresent wave like characteristics. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:6-13) Similarly, the omnipresent GOD of Gods, with whom Messiah is one, has bodies, parts, and passions. "The elements are the tabernacle of God; yea, man is the tabernacle of God, even temples ..." (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:35, 1 Kings 8:27, Luke 24:39, Acts 17:28-29, Ephesians 4:6)

True saviors (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 103:9-10) are ultimately endowed with common titles and authority. In the end, they all take upon themselves, by covenant and endowment, the Eternal name, the name given of their fathers, the divine title of Yeshua ha-Mashiah. This title in English, is translated "Jesus the Christ". The title is frequently spoken without much thought as to its timeless, universal meaning - "Salvation the Anointed", or more fully, Yehoshua ha-Mashiah, the Eternal (Jehovah) is Salvation the Anointed. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 76:23-24) This title is akin to the meaning of the name Yesha'Yahu (Isaiah, Esaias), which is Yeshua (Salvation) is the Eternal (Jehovah).

We see that the name Yehoshua (translated "Jesus", e.g. Acts 7:45, Hebrews 4:8) includes the sacred name of the Eternal. Hence the Apostle Paul's comments in Philipians 2:9-11. Replace the westernized name "Jesus" in Philipians 2:9-11 with the ancient, and original "Yehoshua", meaning "the Eternal (Jehovah) is Salvation", and the verse suddenly makes sense, and avoids what some might otherwise perceive as a blasphemous statement made by Paul. (Isaiah 45:18, 22-25)

The prophet Joseph Smith poetically wrote:

"And I heard a great voice, bearing record from heav'n, He's the Saviour, and only begotten of God- By him, of him, and through him, the worlds were all made, Even all that career in the heavens so broad.

"Whose inhabitants, too, from the first to the last, Are sav'd by the very same Saviour of ours; And, of course, are begotten God's daughters and sons, By the very same truths, and the very same pow'rs." (Joseph Smith, Poetic Version of Doctrine and Covenants Section 76)

The above line, "Whose inhabitants, too, from the first to the last ..." seems to suggest a finite number of worlds. It calls to mind the personal visit of the Lord to each of twelve kingdoms described in parable in LDS Doctrine and Covenants 88:51-63. But elsewhere we learn that the Eternal's creations are infinite in number, without beginning and end (Moses 1:3, 33, 37-38; 7:30); that firsts and lasts, beginnings and ends are only relative. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 29:30-34)

On the topic of infinitudes of the Savior's Atonement, Apostle Russell M. Nelson stated:

"[Jesus Christ's] Atonement is infinite - without an end. It was also infinite in that all humankind would be saved from never-ending death. It was infinite in terms of His immense suffering. It was infinite in time, putting an end to the preceding prototype of animal sacrifice. It was infinite in scope - it was to be done once for all. And the mercy of the Atonement extends not only to an infinite number of people, but also to an infinite number of worlds created by Him. It was infinite beyond any human scale of measurement of mortal comprehension.

"Jesus was the only one who could offer such an infinite atonement, since He was born of a mortal mother and an immortal Father. Because of that unique birthright, Jesus was an infinite Being." ("The Atonement", Ensign, Nov. 1996, 35)

The Savior's Atonement is truly transfinite, and endlessly extend to worlds "created by Him." Does this mean that countless inhabitants of fallen worlds existing long ages before the formation of this earth, were made to wait in darkness and misery, un-resurrected till the redemption and resurrection of the Lord were accomplished on our planet? (1 Corinthians 15:23, 26) No, the thought makes reason stare. Consistent with the teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, the inhabitants of other worlds in ages past, were saved, resurrected and exalted with infinite power, by messianic messengers of salvation worthily bearing the name of the Anointed, Eternal Salvation; a title which our Heavenly Father received and took upon himself.

"The Scriptures inform us that Jesus said, As the Father hath power in Himself, even so hath the Son power - to do what? Why, what the Father did. The answer is obvious - in a manner to lay down His body and take it up again. Jesus, what are you going to do? To lay down my life as my Father did, and to take it up again. Do you believe it? If you do not believe it, you do not believe the Bible." (Joseph Smith, King Follett Discourse; John 5:19-21)

There must therefore be Eternal, resurrected Fathers of our Savior, who not only took upon themselves the sacred title essential to salvation, but there must be Eternal Fathers in the Heavens who are themselves each a Mashiah (Anointed One), and a Moshia (Savior) of worlds. In other cosmic realms, and in long ages past, each literally laid down his life and took it up again on an earth, in much the same manner as did our Savior. In fact, the Infinite Being that is our Savior's Heavenly Father(s) revealed to him what to do in order to save us and kindred worlds.

It is true that our Savior needed only to die once for this world, and kindred worlds of his fold. His Atonement at ones with an infinite source of saving power without beginning or end. He is one with an innumerable company of divine messengers who, in eons past brought salvation to other worlds. (Hebrews 12:22, Isaiah 63:9, Malachi 3:1) Their atonement (the Atonement) truly stems from all eternity to all eternity. (Psalm 90:1-2)

Though the scriptures tell of many saviors, and messiahs or anointed ones (e.g. Isaiah 45:1), yet the Eternal Anointed Savior is, in a real sense, one. (2 Nephi 25:18) His being, his unity, his at-one-ment unites with more than one person - more than one messenger of salvation in eternity. Truly "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world" (Revelation 13:8, Moses 7:47) represents not only a prophesy of things that would be on our earth, but a declaration of things that had already been on other earths, in the deep of time, in the boundless multiplicity of space.

Whenever spiritual death engulfs a world, separating its inhabitants from the celestial presence of the Eternal Elohim, one who has never broken his tie with the Gods must become one with that mortal world, bear the punishment of its sins, die, and rise again to save the world. That one will worthily bear the title Yehoshua ha-Mashiah.

To better appreciate what is meant by "infinite atonement" (2 Nephi 9:7, Alma 34:11-12), it helps to understand that though all infinites are in some sense one (for instance: + ∞ + ∞ = ∞), all infinites are not identical. The number א0 represents the cardinality (number of elements in a set) of the infinite set of natural numbers - the numbers we typically count with. א0 represent the transfinite number of worlds covered by the Atonement. So every natural number, or counting number, can be made to correspond to a world saved. This number is innumerable to human beings, but is nevertheless a specific transfinite number. We see that, as Moses learned, there is a certain relativity to infinity. (Moses 1:37)

Let us suppose that each world is inhabited by a finite number of penetent souls - however many. There are therefore an א0 number of souls saved through the Atonement, because any finite natural number multiplying א0, is still א0.

Because we are dealing with a transfinite number (א0), and not a finite number of worlds, it is possible to place the number of souls saved in one-to-one correspondence with the infinite number of saviors (sons of Elohim) who have born the name and calling, and performed the sacrificial service of Yehoshua ha-Mashiah in eternity. This is a remarkable "loaves and fishes" kind of result. It is the result of the infinite coverage of the Atonement of Ben ha-Elohim, the Son of Gods. (Isaiah 45:11) From "all eternity to all eternity", we are dealing with, through our Savior, an "innumerable company" of anointed ones who are one, and represent that infinite Being sent to save "worlds without end". (Mosiah 3:5, Hebrews 12:22-24, Isaiah 45:17, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 76:112, 1 Corinthians 12:12)

"...of the Father because of me, and of the Son because of my flesh ..." (3 Nephi 1:14)

Finally, it is important to understand that in Messiah "dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." (Colossians 2:9) "God is a Spirit" (John 4:24, 2 Corinthians 3:17) who has, and dwells in resurrected, glorified bodies of flesh and bones as the Son. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 130:22; 93:35) The Spirit is that part of each divine being most correlated with the divine Father, or Parent. (Ether 3:14-16, John 14:11, 20) The living body of flesh and bones is that being, or part of each resurrected being, most associated with the Son, or Child. The Son, by degrees becomes as the Father. Hence the prophet Abinadi's correct, but seldom understood explanation of the relationship of the Father and the Son. (Mosiah 15:1-7, LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:11-14)

It is scripturally justified therefore to think of the Godhead as consisting of two types of divine beings. Each resurrected personage in the Godhead may be thought of as a composite being consisting of an immortal spirit, joined with an immortal being of flesh and bones. They are truly a "compound in one". (2 Nephi 2:11) Thus the Nauvoo doctrine found in LDS Doctrine and Covenants 130:22, and the teaching on the Godhead found in the doctrinal part of the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants (Lectures on Faith) are reconcileable:

"There are two personages who constitute the great, matchless, governing supreme power over all things-...They are the Father and the Son: The Father being a personage of spirit, glory and power; possessing all perfection and fulness: The Son, who was in the bosom of the Father, a personage of tabernacle, made or fashioned like unto man, or, rather man was formed after his likeness, and in his image; - he is also the express image and likeness of the personage of the Father: ... called the Son because of the flesh ... being the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, and having overcome, received a fulness of the glory of the Father - possessing the same mind with the Father, which mind is the Holy Spirit, that bears record of the Father and the Son, and these three are one ..." (Lecture Fifth, pp. 53-54)

Reviewing the doctrinal answers to questions at the end of Lecture Fifth (SECTION V.), imagine how differently these questions might be answered in today's Latter-day Saint Sunday schools. The following answers may seem shocking by today's LDS norms, and yet the 1835 answers are also scripturally true:

"Q. How many personages are there in the Godhead?

"A. Two: The Father and the Son. ...

"Q. How do you prove that there are two personages in the Godhead?

"A. By the Scriptures. ...

"Q. What is the Father?

"A. He is a personage of glory and of power. ...

"Q. What is the Son?

"A. First, he is a personage of tabernacle. ... Secondly, and being a personage of tabernacle, was made or fashioned like unto man ...

"Q. Do the Father and the Son possess the same mind?

"A. They do. ...

"Q. What is this mind?

"A. The Holy Spirit. ..." (1835 Doctrine and Covenants, pp. 55-57)

Originally, the New Testament term "Holy Ghost" simply meant "Holy Spirit". Centuries ago the word "ghost" was essentially interchangeable with the word "spirit". The modern pejorative meaning of "ghost" predominantly considers the spirit of one who has died. Unless one intends this meaning, it is preferable to use "Holy Spirit", as appears in the Kirtland Lectures on Faith. The Hebrew equivalent of "Holy Ghost" is translated "holy spirit", or "holy Spirit" in the KJV (e.g. Psalm 51:11, Isaiah 63:10-11). The title "Holy Ghost" does not appear in the King James Old Testament. The Nephites did not literally say, or write "Holy Ghost", even though the English translation of the Book of Mormon features it. The Nephites were familiar with the Hebrew equivalent Ruah ha-Qodesh. The Hebrew word for "spirit", "ruah" is actually feminine (see Bereshit (Genesis) 1:2 above). The English translation of the Book of Mormon, however, treats "Holy Ghost" as neuter.

In the English Book of Mormon "the Father" and "the Son", and even "the Spirit of the Lord" (1 Nephi 11:9-11) are referred to in the masculine; whereas "the Holy Ghost" is consistently referred to as "it". (2 Nephi 31:8-9; 32:5; 33:2, Alma 34:38; 39:6) This is consistent with the Lectures on Faith (1835 Doctrine and Covenants) definition: The the Holy Spirit is the mind of God, shared by the Father, the Son and "all who believe in his name and keep his commandments ..." (Lecture Fifth, pg. 54; see also John 5:30; 6:38; 10:30, Romans 8:27; 12:2, 16; 15:6, 1 Corinthians 1:10; 2:12-16; 2 Corinthians 13:11, Ephesians 4:4-5, Philippians 2:1-2; 2:5, 1 Peter 4:1)

The 1835 Latter-day Saint definition of the "Holy Spirit" as "the Mind of the Father, or, in other words, the Spirit of the Father" (Lecture Fifth, pg. 54) is reconciled with other scriptures (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 130:22, and John 14:15-18, 26; 15:26) in the understanding that the Holy Ghost is the mind of God conveyed by way of spirit personage. The personage of Spirit who is the third member of the Godhead, presides over the organization of the Holy Ghost - an organization of spirit messengers, or "ministering spirits". (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 76:86-88, Psalm 104:4)

Thus it is appropriate, as in the Book of Mormon, and Kirtland period LDS doctrine, to consider two types of beings constituting the Godhead: Spirit beings, and beings of tabernacle (flesh and bones). Resurrected beings are composite beings of spirit and flesh and bones. Each resurrected being in the Godhead is both Parent and Child. We may think of the Father and the Son as separate and distinct, and we may also recognize that Yehoshua ha-Mashiah is both the Father and the Son. (Mosiah 16:15, Ether 3:14)

In light of these scriptural truths, it becomes clear that the Sunday School analogy in which the body is compared to a glove, or to an inanimate house wherein the living spirit comes to dwell, is overly simplistic. The relationship between spirit and body is more of a marriage between two different kinds of beings. Remember that spirit is also material. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 131:7) So called "metaphysical", or "supernatural" (implying something other than natural, or physical), does not exist. The deeper questions, what is natural? what is physical? should be asked. The physical includes such transcendent things as life, consciousness, action-at-a-distance field effects, and superluminal quantum connections. Do we really understand what "physical" is? Or do we deceive ourselves into thinking that primitive force based Newtonian Mechanics, and Maxwell's Equations capture all that is "physical". Like the spirit, the living body of flesh and bones is another kind of material being consisting of a host of living things. But what is material? Is matter fundamentally alive?

Notwithstanding the definition of death given in James 2:26, when the presiding spirit leaves the body, all of the living processes, and entities that make up the body do not instantly die. Hair and fingernails, for instance, continue to grow for a while. Hosts of cells do not die right away, but fight to stay alive! On a larger scale, with the loss of the apostles and spiritual gifts, bishops carried on as best they could to preside over the body of the church. Death (Apostasy) inevitably ensued. But even here we should consider that death is just a continuance of life on a less organized, less inspired level. We should consider that life, or decision making occur on material levels more fundamental than organic molecules. (LDS Doctrine and Covenants 93:30) Could this be why the quantum microcosm is not completely predestined, or mechanically determined? Matter and the material universe are basically alive. The fundaments of consciousness and decision making are natural, and intrinsic to physical existence.

The Prophet Brigham Young explained, "What is commonly called death does not destroy the body, it only causes a separation of spirit and body, but the principle of life, inherent in the native elements, of which the body is composed, still continues with the particles of that body and causes it to decay, to dissolve itself into the elements of which it was composed. Is that death? No, death only separates the spirit and body, and a principle of life still operates in the untenanted tabernacle, but in a different way, and producing different effects from those observed while it was tenanted by the spirit. There is not a particle of element which is not filled with life, and all space is filled with element; there is no such thing as empty space, though some philosophers contend that there is.

"Life in various proportions, combinations, conditions, etc., fills all matter. ..." (DEATH AND RESURRECTION, Discourses of Brigham Young, compiled by John A. Widtsoe, pp. 368-369) 

May we come to see the living body as a decision making kinetic assembly, a temple of motions within motions, presided over by a hierarchy of decision making intelligences. (Romans 12:4-7 1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19-20; 12:12-20, 2 Corinthians 6:16, Abraham 3:19-22) Intelligences which do not in any magical way violate physical conservations laws, but which transcendently direct how conservation is manifest. These natural intelligences, intrinsic to matter itself, choose between more than one possible solution. Free-will then is real! (Ezra 7:13) If one seeks proof of a god presiding over a universe of living things, consider one's own being. Indeed, godhood is in certain respects, relative. (Genesis 1:26; 17:7; 27:28-29, Exodus 7:1; 22:28, 1 Corinthians 8:5-6) In view of this relativity, the existence of gods should be respected as a natural, not supernatural fact - in a universe more strange, wonderful and terrible than we imagine. (Psalm 82:6-7; 2:7)

... Infinite Being ...

The infinite Being that is the Eternal Elohim, includes an innumerable company of separate and distinct persons: exalted Parents and Children, Lords and Anointed Ones; each possessing omnipresent powers and connections. There are infinitely more separate and distinct persons, from countless worlds, participating in the Eternal Being, than cells in the human body.

King Sh'lomoh (Solomon) thoughtfully asked, "But will God [Elohim] in very deed dwell with men on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house which I have built?" (Dedicatory Prayer, Jerusalem Temple; 2 Chronicles 6:18)

    

 

Vincent Coon וינסנט כון   Copyright 2019

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