The First Gods

As man now is, God once was, as God now is, man may become 1

This is my favorite doctrine of the LDS church, let me explain why. In one swoop it resolves all the quandaries of where God came from, it implies limits to his powers. In many ways it makes a lot more logical sense than an all loving/all powerful being that condemns his imperfect creations for not being what he wanted after he made them. At the same time it gives us the hope that we too one day be just as awesome as we think he is.

The concept is based on the King Follett sermon given by Joseph Smith Jr. not long before he was killed. The founder of mormonism over time adjusted his views on God and landed on this very new concept which he spoke of at brother Follett’s funeral. It was so new that Christianity at large cried foul and has been reiterating it ever since.

This is likely at least one of the reasons the church recently released this article as part of the answering-all-the-internet-questions essays that have been slipped onto the church website over the past several months. It appears that the church is quietly backing away from this once very unique teaching. It used to be taught that one day we would inherit worlds without end, just like our dad in heaven. Now in this latest release that idea is downplayed as a cartoonish characterization by the church’s detractors.

planet nazi

 

As a person brought up in the religion very much being taught one day I’d be god over my own world or worlds (not to mention the eternal sex) This does feel a bit like getting the soup nazi treatment.

 

 

So much like the blossoming rose of the Lamanites and the color cursing of skins yet another of the unique LDS doctrines is being quietly modified to make the church seem more mainstream and a little less crazy to the world at large. Just compare this snap shot

create worlds

of an article on the topic in 2002 to this  2009 article with the same topic now. (Here is a second snapshot to make the comparison a bit easier) *please see edit below, who would have expected these guys self plagiarize!

now its gone jpg

Now you see the quote from prophet, seer and revelator Spencer W. Kimball, and now you don’t, just like magic it never happened. Quietly erased from existence the church now pretends the teachings of the prophet of my youth never happened.

To be honest this makes me sad. Why? Because like I said, it’s my favorite doctrine! 2. The reason I think so is because I am very hopeful and enamored by the idea of eternally learning, progressing and one day achieving something transcendent. Personally I would often think about having my own universe or planet one day and how different I would design it to be. Certainly I wouldn’t set up such a confusing methodology of discovering truth that you see amongst the religions of today. Also on my world there wouldn’t be any need to worship me. I mean really, why would I command people to adore me? That petulant behavior seems more like Q from Star Trek than the type of loving guiding father I try to be. I believe a father wants to help his children exceed any achievement he ever made and cheer them on while they do so. No need for worship in my universe.

It strikes me as I write this that it is human nature to reach for the stars, maybe this is the reason religion will never disappear from our society no matter how irrational it may seem. For just maybe it is because of our irrationality that we are so successful. We are just crazy enough to believe things can be done that are seemingly impossible. crazy chance Rather than condemn this very nature and the zealots of all types it produces, maybe we should celebrate it. Because if we believe there is a chance and we take that big bet it might just payoff. The only thing that assures we won’t win against the odds is refusing to play.

Joseph Smith imagined an eternal string of exalted beings going forever back in time, con man or pious nutcase that he was, it is still a pretty cool idea. These days science has shown us there is a definite beginning to the universe. Was there a dude that started it all? Did all of the cold in space spring forth from the Fridge? We really can’t know, at least not yet. If it is a grand design there are some really big questions on my mind for the creator. If we are all just lucky to be here on the roll of some cosmic dice, then I say lets take advantage of it. If we don’t it is a mighty big waste of space. If there isn’t a string of gods going back in time, so what! Nothing is saying we can’t be The First Gods and start our own eternal string of universes.

Do I think I have a chance of being one of them? I hope so, but if not, Fridge knows I am going to instill in my posterity the indomitable will to go for that crazy thing that others say can’t be done. So even if it is just a trace of my DNA a thousand years from now that controls godlike powers in a future that I can hardly even imagine a piece of who I am will live on. That is a bit of immortally that I am positive I can affect immediately. I believe that mankind as a whole will one day achieve immortality through its own efforts. I predict when when we reach the singularity in the next few decades some very amazing things will happen, I hope personally that I will hold out till then because I just might partake of eternity in ways never expected when I was born. Our technology advances as quickly as it does because we combine our scientific approach with wild and crazy ideas that capture our imagination and drive our innovation.

So for all the rational logical thinking that surely help mankind progress, it is the council of the Fridge that while you are reasoning and figuring things out don’t forget to embrace a little crazy. It might lead to Godhood one day.

“Let’s think the unthinkable, let’s do the undoable. Let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all.” ~ Douglas Adams

EDIT:
So the Exmormons that follow the Fridge are some pretty astute fact checkers and caught a mistake I made unintentionally in this post. After a friend sent me the photo with the quote from SWK and I searched for that topic on LDS org to find the source and found the 2009 article that I took a screen shot of, didn’t notice the hit from 2002 in my search.  Turns out they are from two different articles. I had no idea that these guys reused and modified their own talks. Here are the two items.

where the first pic comes from.
https://www.lds.org/ensign/2002/10/education-for-real-life?lang=eng

where the second pic comes from
https://www.lds.org/new-era/2009/04/real-life-education?lang=eng&query=real+life+is+eternal+life

my search used to find it on the LDS site
https://www.lds.org/search?q=real+life+is+eternal+life&domains=all&lang=eng

I think it is fair to say that the topics are being modified as the church progresses forward as show by the change from 2002 to 2009 as well as the release on the topic recently posted. In this case however the original article was not modified. It was my unintentional mistake to make that implication in my first release of this piece. I have made a slight modification to the article to remove that implication.

  1. Lorenzo Snow
  2. I’m already used to the church changing things while at the same pretending they didn’t and it was that way all along

24 Replies to “The First Gods”

  1. I’ve arrived independently at the same conclusion. So what if it’s all a lie? So what if there will be no Messiah to save humanity? We can save ourselves! While individually we are hostage to circunstances, the human race as a group will continue to learn and subjugate nature untill every disease, problem and obstacle is conquered and every question is answered. Death itself will be eventually vanquished and the universe will be hacked. That day, if there’s a god, someone will knock on his door. If the throne is empty (which I think is the case), there will be finally an anthropomorphic butt to sit on it.

    While I think I will be long dead by then, I take pleasure to think I’ll have been one of a zillion steps in the long human journey to mastery of the universe. If my posterity achieves “exaltation”, it will have been due in small part to my effort, along with countless others who have lived, worked and died so that they will have that opportunity. I rejoice in my role of a brick in the base of the pyramid of eternity.

    From an individual perspective, we all grow in knowledge and capacity as we grow older and the only thing that stops us from eventually learning everything and becoming all powerful is death. Once death and aging is “cured” (and it’s not unreasonable to expect that within our lifetime) each and every individual will eventually become god, even if it takes a million years.

  2. There are many common beliefs and doctrines that have changed over the years. As you have pointed out in other posts, the Word of Wisdom explicitly states “not by
    commandment or constraint”1 but it became a requirement for temple recommends around the time of prohibition2.
    Blacks were given the priesthood after the Civil Rights movement and passage of
    the Civil Rights Amendment 3. Homosexuals have been declared to be people
    who chose to be “unnatural” 4*. It will be interesting to see if this
    view changes. It is fascinating to see how the church changes wording to give the impression that the church has always been how it is now or that the doctrines have not changed. My personal favorite was polygamy. For over a century after Official
    Declaration-1
    , men were sealed to additional wives in the temple after
    their first wives had passed away 5,
    6. At the same time, the church spoke out against polygamy to the press and asserted the position that those who marry more than one wife were excommunicated 7. It was duplicitous to say polygamy was
    no longer practiced while sealing widowers to additional wives.

    Anyone with experience in church leadership understands the
    concept of “milk before the meat.” There are doctrines that can be discussed with strong and stalwart leaders that are not to be mentioned to those who might not be prepared for “greater light and knowledge.” In my experience, those doctrines and past teachings aren’t denied, but they aren’t volunteered. Topics like
    polygamy as an eternal principle, race as a cursing and marking by God, blood
    atonement, Biblical practices of slavery and rape, the Adam God theory, the 9
    foot tall hairy immortal Cain story, or the issuing of personally engraved seer
    stones in the First Resurrection are not lesson material in Gospel Essentials
    classes. They seem to pop up spontaneously in elders’ quorum and high priests’ group, but local leaders discourage those discussions. After all, it might make the whole church look absurd.

    * Note the difference between the text and the delivered talk (in italics) from Boyd K.
    Packer: “Some suppose that they were preset and cannot overcome what they feel are inborn temptations toward the impure and unnatural. Not so! Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?

  3. I am always amused and impressed when I talk with people or read their responses when you question their belief system.I am quite impressed that they go to great lengths to defend it,for which I really do applaud them,as well they seem to always want to vigorously convince you they are right even to the point of violence etc.Makes me question why they feel such need to defend it as intelligent people would be convinced of their arguments if it had basis in fact not myth of belief(which is every ones right to believe) which cannot be argued as it is what that person believes.After all have not the greatest minds ,inventors,visionaries been non conformists and always questioned the status quo,pushed the bounds of socialially accepted ideas or accepted truths up to that point.Even Joseph Smith was a non conformist with respect to accepted religious ideas of his day,yet when you question him his teachings etc your branded as Antimormon/Athiest or even Antichrist.How quickly people forget.

  4. I didn’t call you a ZERO, I said you have ZERO credibility but you know that. You need to make yourself the victim for your message to have some perceived value. I believe you are a child of our heavenly father you’ve just chosen to ignore that.

    You know its interesting that you have such a hiccup with your “ad hominem attack” thing. You get your panties in a bunch over the mormon faith, I don’t know… maybe you were abused as a child or had mommy or daddy issues, but nonetheless, you get bent out of shape and now devote your time to tearing something down through your “meekly asserted whimper.” Is there not something more useful to do with your time? If you said, this faith is crap and then devoted your life to another admirable pursuit then I think there is value there and could respect the fact that you found another path or set of beliefs that speak to you and chose to move forward positively in that direction. Instead, you choose to live life like Fred Phelps where your message is one of darkness. You continually live life in the past. Is it painful at all to know that while the church grows daily and spreads around the world, you are left here to argue with me (the one guy whose family is out of town for the weekend and thinks you’re full of crap)? Do you ever wake up and think “maybe I’ll take a different approach today and focus on moving on with life.” You’re obviously a little narcissistic which I’m sure plays a role. Give me a break… your name on your site is “Profet.” Is that what you think you are? You see a Prophet is someone who speaks with God. You are someone who spends time criticizing a religion you no longer believe in like someone cares what you think or thinks your biased view has any relevant meaning. I complained about the hotel I stayed in a few weeks ago. I even wrote a review about it online but now its over. I can move on! At some point, “Profet” I recommend you do the same. You may always harbor the feelings you have but at the end of the day what type of legacy is “Ex-Mormon who spent his life bashing his former church.” Is that what society, your friends, and your family are going to remember you for someday? You have to admit that’s sad. Even if you convince one person to leave the faith, what do you have to offer them inn terms of hope to replace it with? You don’t. Your message is as shallow as your arguments. “I’m a victim of the Mormons… ya,ya,ya” Fine, so be it! Now get on with life and quit being such a wimp.

    In terms of your race issue reply, or any other argument you made, I don’t need to convince you of anything. Just leave all our posts up for people to read and let them decide for themselves.

    1. My name and point is clear for any that choose to think about it. Profet, yep, because anyone can call themselves a prophet. It doesn’t mean they are one now does it? I misspell it intentionally just for the ones who might think I am serious, you know, to give them a hint that they should look for the satire in my writing. Anyone can make any fanciful claim about talking to God that they want, anyone can go around making up any sort of religion and back it up with the same claims that you do. If your method of proof can be used to prove anything true, it is a pretty crappy way to determine truth mr. UBwrong 🙂

      I find it interesting that you still are on the attack, yet you claimed you weren’t and I’m the one with zero credibility? You also said I don’t do any research, and now you call me a wimp? Go read what ad hominem attack means: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem

      “An ad hominem (Latin for “to the man” or “to the person”[1]), short for argumentum ad hominem, is a general category of fallacies in which a claim or argument is rejected on the basis of some irrelevant fact about the author of or the person presenting the claim or argument”

      You can call me angry, bitter and a wimp all you want, I don’t really care. Because that doesn’t matter to a person looking for truth. What matters are the facts, so far you haven’t countered a single fact of what I have pointed out. All you have done is attack. The truth you are basing your facts on is weak if you can’t point at anything but the approved propaganda of the organization to prove it is true.

      As for the claim I am some sort of damaged Ex-Mormon, If you have read my blog, it is pretty obvious that being raised a Mormon was a good thing in my life, many of the values and lessons I learned are priceless to me. In fact I wanted nothing more to be true than this belief. I found out however that belief alone doesn’t make a thing true, I found out there are tricks of psychology that trap people in a situation without them even realizing it. In short I found out the claims of authority from god and being the one true authorized religion are faulty and no more valid than any other one on the planet. Do I feel a need to point this out? Yep I do. I would feel the same need if I had been systematically cheated by any organization. (and people can be part of a cheating organization without knowing it and have the nothing but the most honorable reasons for promoting it, for proof look at pretty much any MLM)

      Faith, isn’t crap. Faith is a powerful thing for motivating people. I believe in faith. http://churchofthefridge.com/2013/10/14/what-do-you-believe-now/ (there another reference to my own blog since I have written on the topic of what I believe in already, is it ok if I reference myself when I am responding to your attacks on my character?)

      Faith is motivational, for example: if I didn’t have faith that this message of how to discover truth and figure out the difference between what ‘feels’ true and what is actually provable to be true or false would help others I wouldn’t write it. I know for a fact it will make some people angry. That is unavoidable, it is a result of cognitive dissonance and one of the ways a person deals with discovering new facts that would dispute deeply held beliefs.

      “Dissonance is aroused when people are confronted with information that is inconsistent with their beliefs. If the dissonance is not reduced by changing one’s belief, the dissonance can result in restoring consonance through misperception, rejection or refutation of the information, seeking support from others who share the beliefs, and attempting to persuade others.[4]” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance

      There is another ^^^ reference so you can see that I do do my research before making a claim 🙂 I have faith that my message about ‘looking for the positive things in any religion while rejecting the crappy stuff is A-ok’ and will be heard by at least one person. Learning to believe in yourself is a good thing, and if like Dumbo you need a feather to fly for a bit I see religion/myth as playing this role in our culture and I think that is fine too.

      If you want to stay Mormon and are happy in your beliefs, I am the first one that will recommend you don’t read my blog. Just avoid it like you do any other perceived evil on the internet. I only write for those few that have glimpsed behind the curtain and caught a glance of Oz fiddling with the levers. They have discovered facts about the foundation of the church and the claims of its leaders that are simply false and can’t figure out why it doesn’t true up with the feelings of spiritual witness that they also have had. In short, my blog is for people like me. If you are not one of those you are welcome to move on too. No one is forcing you to crank out your demeaning rebuttals to my cogent arguments.

      I am focused on moving on in life, I also care about helping along others that have found themselves in the same boat after discovering they to had been subtly lied to by a religion that they trusted, understanding why you fell for that trick and how it occurred helps us all move on. My blog might not be for you, maybe the only reason I engage you in a conversation is so that others reading the threads can follow along and watch as you avoid every legitimate point and instead just attack me personally. That is one of the tricks of apologetics after all. Heck it is written in scripture and even spoken over the pulpit as a way of discrediting the ‘bitter’ apostate :). This is part of the psychology that traps you in, the repeated message that the only reason a person would ever leave is because they have sinned or are evil, or anything but the fact they found out the truth claims were false. These are myths http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EP3GJeYIN3s Do your research! 😀

      Now there is one thing we agree on Mr. UB, or should I just call you wrong? Leaving these post up for others to read and decide for themselves is a good thing. In fact you are welcome to have a tirade on the comments of my blog all you want about my motivations for writing it. You can claim what ever unprovable point about my past you want and call me what ever name you wish because that only proves my point. The evidence is there to see and the only way to try and avoid it is to attack the person that points it out and discredit them.

      Oh and one last thing, your comments and our discussion inspired my latest post and I appreciate inspiration no matter where it comes from so thanks! 🙂 http://churchofthefridge.com/2014/03/22/not-that-kind-of-marriage-this-will-always-be-so/

      just kidding about that last thing part, I reread your attack on me calling myself a profet, I pondered that and after taking it to the Fridge received this instruction:

      In fact it is clear that the work of the Fridge will move forward despite detractors like yourself, the growth in readership of the Church of the Fridge proves it is true, in fact since we started tracking it has doubled every month! If only you could open the door and see the light you too could be pondering the mysteries therein and basking in the further light and knowledge that so many other icicles of the Fridge have already found. For thus saith the Fridge, Myth is good, Truth is better, and a healthy sense of humor is the best! *sarcasm font for the satirically challenged*

  5. Oh and p.s. don’t ever reference yourself or your article as support for something you say. We’ve already established you have ZERO credibility.

    1. another ad hominem attack, yes I referenced my own article as there are many references in them to the original source materials. And still you claim I have zero credibility? Why would you make that claim when there are dozens of credible references in the things I have posted often to the churches own materials. The only reason I can see you would make an attack like that is if you take it personal that I would point out the logical errors in your belief system. You see that does cause people to react emotionally, it is a simple fact of psychology that you do not like it when your deeply held beliefs are challenged. These type of attacks where you declare a person a ZERO, are a perfect example of this. Here is a link for you to study up on the effects. http://www.simplypsychology.org/cognitive-dissonance.html

  6. You do understand what exaltation means, correct? and you do understand that by using the word exaltation they are referring to the very thing you are saying is becoming a “meekly asserted whimper?” Do you admit you are wrong in your analysis of that? Because clearly you are.

    As far as changing doctrine goes, you falsely make the claim “you assert that God’s doctrine will never change.” You are incorrect. I never claimed that God’s doctrine would never change. I quoted Elder Nelson who said “WE CANNOT CHANGE HIS DOCTRINE. IT IS NOT OURS TO CHANGE.” If God wants to change his doctrine that is his right. He is the almighty and he can adjust things as needed.

    Now for a victim like yourself you’ll take the “thats not fair of God to change his doctrine” argument which is crap. You see when you know what God knows and can see the end from the beginning, all mankind, then you have the perspective to guide humanity through this crazy earth life. Will some things change, certainly! But does change mean there isn’t a God or God isn’t fair, of course not.

    In some instances there is evidence of the church, its people and leadership petitioning the Lord for further guidance on a subject and the Lord responding with answers that have changed various tenants and principles of the church. Does that make God not God. No! One of the things Mormon’s openly believe and profess to the world is that the heaven’s are open and God speaks to prophets today. He leads his church by revelation. If you want to criticize a church for change then you should probably criticize the Catholics since they believe the heavens are sealed and that revelation essentially ended at the time of Christ. God can change his doctrine, man can’t change God’s doctrine. And regardless of which doctrine you want to turn back to historically you will find evidence of prophets petitioning the Lord and the Lord making the change. I think its also worth noting that the saving ordinances taught by the church are no different than they were in the time of Adam. Sure the church and its structure, programs, etc. change but the doctrine of repentance and baptism, those essential steps to salvation have not changed.

    Two additional points from your last post, ad hominem means “arising from or appealing to emotions and not reason or logic.” As the Spaniard in Princess Bride would say “I do not think you should use that word… I do not think that means what you think that means.” I would say someone who drafts articles on a website without taking the time to research the facts of what he is speaking about and hoping to blindly convince others who similarly are too lazy or uneducated to research facts for themselves is the one making ad hominem attacks.

    My second point, and lets return to the dictionary… Disavowed means “deny any responsibility or support for”. Another example of how you are so incorrect. You acknowledged yourself that there is scriptural support for people of color having the priesthood taken away so I’ll assume we need not argue that end of the matter. In terms of having those priesthood blessings restored, Official Declaration – 2 which is now attached to the end of the doctrine and covenants states the churches position on the restoration. It reads in part “aware of the promises made by the prophets and presidents of the Church who have preceded us that at some time, in God’s eternal plan, all of our brethren who are worthy may receive the priesthood, and witnessing the faithfulness of those from whom the priesthood has been withheld, we have pleaded long and earnestly in behalf of these, our faithful brethren… He has heard our prayers, and by revelation has confirmed that the long-promised day has come when every faithful, worthy man in the Church may receive the holy priesthood.” Clearly the church doesn’t “disavow” the doctrine here. There is sufficient evidence to support it was taken away and as the Lord’s doctrine teaches there shall be a restoration of all things including priesthood to those from whom those blessings were taken away by the Lord. This argument is yet another common argument peddled along by uneducated and would be critics like yourself who don’t even take the time to research and read about the topic before you make the argument. You heard the argument from a buddy or read it in an article from another lazy and uneducated critic and think that provides sufficient evidence to make the argument right.

    You can argue with me all you want from here on out but it won’t change that your article was clearly wrong and misleading. So, go ahead, pick another topic and direction to argue about and hope that helps you divert the attention away from the fact that your credibility as a researcher and writer is completely bogus.

  7. Maybe you used to read it as a “loud declaration” and now you only choose to see it as a “meekly asserted whimper.” Even from the most recent General Conference in October 2013 Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said “The Savior’s way of life is good. His way includes chastity before marriage and total fidelity within marriage. The Lord’s way is the only way for us to experience enduring happiness. His way brings sustained comfort to our souls and perennial peace to our homes. And best of all, His way leads us home to Him and our Heavenly Father, to eternal life and exaltation.” If you understood what EXALTATION meant you would know that it has two parts, the first means to live with God again and the second means to live the type of life God lives. You can search your heart out an try to make a case for a changing in this doctrine but the fact is you only see less because of your inability or lack of knowledge. Everytime you see a church leader say Exaltation they are reaffirming that doctrine and it’s said every conference, every month, every week, and every day.

    In the very same talk Elder Nelson said “Regardless of what civil legislation may be enacted, the doctrine of the Lord regarding marriage and morality cannot be changed. Remember: sin, even if legalized by man, is still sin in the eyes of God! While we are to emulate our Savior’s kindness and compassion, while we are to value the rights and feelings of all of God’s children, WE CANNOT CHANGE HIS DOCTRINE. IT IS NOT OURS TO CHANGE. His doctrine is ours to study, understand, and uphold.”

    I have deep respect for people of other faiths who devote themselves to God and to really learning and studying doctrine. There are many who disagree with Mormonism and can make a legitimate argument with substance to stand on. At the end of the day you typically have to agree to disagree. Ever notice how you internet critic types have to either make some emotional plea, twist facts, and altogether leave them out to make an argument? Go educate yourself so you can make an argument that isn’t based on a complete lack of logic. Do you think you serve your “flock” well by being misinformed and ignorant? Is this more about your inadequacies and need for attention or a true and honest desire to educate people. If its about someone other than yourself you should spend more time reading, thinking, and pondering and less time typing mindless crap.

    1. I have noticed that you ‘apologetic types’ often resort to ad hominem attacks once a cord of truth is struck.

      You assert that God’s doctrine will never change and yet we can look right at church records and see doctrine change, case in point http://churchofthefridge.com/2013/12/08/skin-like-flint/

      For decades you can see the leaders declared skin color as a curse from god, it is even right in the scriptures, now that is disavowed as doctrine.

      You claim that the leader Elder Nelson says the morality of marriage will never change, yet you can find a similar claim about that in reference to marriage between black people and white people declared by Brigham Young while he was prophet:

      “I am as much opposed to the principle of slavery as any man in the present acceptation or usage of the term, it is abused. I am opposed to abuseing [sic] that which God has decreed, to take a blessing, and make a curse of it. It is a great blessing to the seed of Adam to have the seed of Cain for servants…. Let this Church which is called the Kingdom of God on the earth; we will sommons [sic] the first presidency, the twelve, the high counsel, the Bishoprick [sic], and all the elders of Isreal [sic], suppose we summons them to apear [sic] here, and here declare that it is right to mingle our seed with the black race of Cain, that they shall come in with us and be pertakers [sic] with us of all the blessings God has given to us. On that very day, and hour we should do so, the priesthood is taken from this Church and the Kingdom of God leaves us to our fate.
      Brigham Young, Brigham Young Addresses, Feb. 5, 1852”

      This isn’t the only time Brigham said god would never allow blacks to marry whites. Of course now the church says BY was just speaking as a man. But here is the rub, how do we know Elder Nelson isn’t speaking as a man right now, because looking into the past you can readily see a person like your self quoting BY in the same way you just quoted Elder Nelson to prove your point.

      No sir, I am not twisting your facts, they come out twisted as you can plainly see by looking at the history.

  8. I was absolutely taught we’d create our own planets…and for good reason. The leaders of the church taught it:

    “All those who are counted worthy to be exalted and to become Gods, even the sons of God, will go forth and have earths and worlds like those who framed this and millions on millions of others

    Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 18:259, October 8, 1876

    “Then will they become Gods…they will never cease to increase and to multiply, worlds without end. When they receive their crowns, their dominions, they then will be prepared to frame earths like unto ours and to people them in the same manner as we have been brought forth by our parents, by our Father and God”

    Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 17:143

    “As our Father and God begat us, sons and daughters, so will we rise immortal, males and females, and beget children, and, in our turn, form and create worlds, and send forth our spirit children to inherit those worlds, the same as we were sent here, and thus will the works of God continue, and not only God himself, and His Son Jesus Christ have the power of endless lives, but all of His redeemed offspring.”

    Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses 14:242

    1894:

    “…we shall sit upon thrones, governing and controlling our posterity from eternity to eternity, and increasing eternally”

    Lorenzo Snow, Millennial Star 56:772, October 5, 1894

    1956:

    “…A man and his wife when glorified will have spirit children who eventually will go on an earth like this one we are on and pass through the same kind of experiences, being subject to mortal conditions, and if faithful, then they also will receive the fullness of exaltation and partake of the same blessings.”

    Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation 2:48

    2001:

    “They will receive everything our Father in Heaven has and will become like Him. They will even be able to have spirit children and make new worlds for them to live on, and do all the things our Father in Heaven has done.”

    Gospel Fundamentals [2001], 201

  9. Seriously, though, why’d they have to put the kibosh on the free planets? They could have said, “Sure! Everybody gets a planet! What the hell.”

    It wouldn’t have cost them anything, and it’s not like anyone could disprove it.

  10. When I read the essay “Becoming Like God”, I wasn’t sure what the point was supposed to be when I finished it. The first 1/2 – 2/3 seemed to reaffirm the “we can become gods” teaching and even cited some NT statements by Paul and early Christian leaders Irenaeus, Clement, and Basil to, it seemed, assert that the potential to become gods was indeed an early Christian belief that was lost/abandoned over the years.

    But then the last 1/3 or so started to become more ambiguous. At first I thought they were just playing semantics and saying that no, we don’t believe we get our own planet, as in singular, or that an already made planet is given to each exalted person to live on or to “play” with. And that’s technically true. Mormon teachings have been that this earth will become the celestial kingdom and this is where all the people who earn celestial glory will live. So in that respect, no, they don’t teach that members will get their own planet to live on and/or “play” with. But that’s not the same thing as saying exalted people will become gods themselves and have the ability to create, populate, and rule their own worlds. It appears like they’re trying to slyly address two different things without clearly differentiating between the two.

    But then when you add in the edits to the talks, taking out references to members becoming gods and creating their own worlds, it starts to appear that yes, they are actually trying to quietly redefine the meaning of exaltation.

  11. That article seemed to say both things at once, in a vague and unsatisfying manner. On the one hand it dismissed “getting a planet” as a caricature, on the other hand it talked about creating like God. I felt it was moving away from that teaching, my TBM husband felt it did not.

    1. It used to be a bold declaration, now it is a meekly asserted whimper.

      read the king follett sermon, that is as bold as it gets

  12. Was this doctrine causing issues with members? Or did the Church think the doctrine is preventing Christians from switching teams?

    The “now it’s gone” pic seems to not show for me. However, it’s downloadable… so I uploaded here as a png: http://i.imgur.com/W8mfyu8.png

    1. Fixed the pic, should be loading now, thanks for the heads up!

      This doctrine has been a target for mainstream christianity ever since the beginning back in the 80’s a movie called the god makers movie centered it’s criticism around this fact. Much of the leadership in the church today I am sure remember that movie clearly and have been steering the ship away from this doctrine for some time now.

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