In mormonism in order to be all you can be ie. a god, you must have taken a body, paid your 10%, slogged through the masonic temple rituals, not drink coffee…you can’t make it without having a body on some planet somewhere.
But, mormonism teaches that the Holy Spirit is a spirit and has no body. Hmmm…how can this be? If he never had a body, and he would have one now if he had, then he cannot be a god according to mormon doctrine. Something tells me that Smith and company have not thought through their little construct.
Well, it isn’t the first time a non-enfleshed child of heavenly father was considered a god. The Mormons believe that the Jehovah of the Old Testament is the pre-mortal Jesus. So if Jehovah/Jesus was a god before he was born into a body, then the Holy Ghost could be one, too.
You’re right, though. The teaching that one must have a body before godhood is possible doesn’t tie with the Mormon Jehovah or the Mormon Holy Ghost.
I have heard various theories about Jesus. First of all, according to Mormonism all of us have always existed as uncreated intelligence. Whether or not our intelligence existed before our spirit as a distinct entity is open to debate – some Mormons say that each of us existed as our own distinct intelligence prior to becoming a spirit. Others say that intelligence simply existed in kind of an intelligence pool and that we began when intelligence was taken from the pool and we were organized into spirits.
So some Mormons would say that Jesus existed eternally as God as an intelligence before he received his spirit body. Others would say he became God when his intelligence was organized into a spirit. Some people would say Jesus progressed to become a God after his spiritual birth, but before the creation of the world.
Before I abandoned Mormonism completely I had decided that since Jesus was the Eternal God in the Book of Mormon that he had to be God even as an intelligence before receiving his spirit. This means that for some Mormons Jesus was always God with the Father from eternity. Other Mormons take a different view. Mormons have taken very simple concepts about the Godhead and made them hard through too much thinking.
I have noticed that the Mormons have come in for a little criticism here. Like other sects founded in the US in the 19th century–the Jevhovah’s Witnesses, the Seventh Day Adventists, the Christian Scientists–they espouse beliefs that seem to many mainstream Catholics (not to mention Protestants and Orthodox) a bit screwy. And yes, I suppose they are.
However, before being dismissive of them, it might at least be worth a minute’s reflection to consider how, from the point of view of one not convinced, mainstream Christian doctrine already can appear rather bizarre, with Catholics, particularly in their moral teaching, in modern times seeming to heap the bizarre on the bizarre. I’m not saying I agree with that, but it might be worth a thought before we say that it is reasonable to believe that a man rose from the dead but not that we can baptize for our ancestors so they can join us in heaven.
I can dump on the Mormons as well as the next guy, if that’s what we’re after, and you are being too kind to them by overanalyzing the basis of their teaching like that. Joseph Smith would never have heard the word “gnosticism” and was not intellectually capable of analyzing the situation the way you do in the second paragraph. Mormonism like the other sects I mentioned in my previous post was founded by folks who had zealotry where their literacy should have been…
I don’t think it is fair to say that most of us criticize Mormonism because it is “screwy.” Yes, Mormonism has its screwy features. But, the primary basis upon which we criticize it is because it claims to be Christian. By clever manipulations of argument, and by preying upon the ill-informed and poorly catechised, Mormonism draws people further out of communion with the True Church that Jesus so clearly established.
It is true that, when viewed through the eyes of a person without faith, Mormonism and Christianity look virtually identical, which is to say, ridiculous. And this is a key point to make: the religions may seem identical to the uninformed, but to the informed, they are as different as night and day. One, Mormonism, leads to disunity, and possibly to Hell. The other, Catholic Christianity, leads to eternal life, being the “foolishness of God.” We want to make sure that people are seeing the difference between the foolishness of God, and the foolishness of men.
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