Over the last couple of weeks, there have been some excellent posts and discussions on Brad Haas’ Defensor Veritatis site concerning creation ex nihilo vs. ex materia and the role of apotheosis in patristic writings.
Although I am not LDS, I certainly do respect their views when presented in such a scholarly manner. With regard to ex nihilo, they make a decent attempt to support creatio ex materia. I wish they would have dealt with (or at least discussed) certain scriptures (cf. Isa. 45:7) that seem to counter their arguments. I also wish in their discussion of eternal progression that they would have addressed Hebrews 13:8, too.
Leaving this issue aside, I’m curious to what extent a premortal existence can be derived from the writings of the ECF. Although some level of apotheosis may be attainable to some extent in Catholic theology (read some of David Waltz’ excellent posts on these threads!), it may not necessarily connect with the apotheosis of created beings.
Furthermore, if one wishes to support creatio ex materia, how does that effect the creation of souls? All from what I have read in support of creatio ex materia mentions premordial chaotic waters, but says nothing about the eternal nature of ‘intelligences’ as we find in LDS scriptures (cf. D&C 93:21).