By Chris Layton
We believe that the very Eternal Father and God whom we worship in the name of Jesus Christ is the first man who was placed in the Garden of Eden, then sent out into this lone and dreary world to learn by his own experience to discern good from evil.
He is Adam who was formerly known as Michael, the third member of the creation Godhead. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught us that they are comprised of three distinct individuals namely Eloheim, Jehovah, and Michael. It is Adam, this third member of the creation Godhead who was from the beginning made LORD over the whole earth and all things contained therein. He, therefore, is the LORD and He is our GOD.
As the prophet Brigham Young taught:
“Adam is our Father and God and the only God with whom we have to do.” (JD vol. 1 p. 50)
He also taught
“Adam is the man who stands at the gate, and holds the keys to Everlasting Life and Salvation to all His children, who have or who ever will come upon the Earth” (Brigham Young- Deseret News June 18, 1873)
Our prophet Joseph taught in the King Follett discourse that “ God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret.”
I’ve often thought, in light of this great secret Joseph revealed, wouldn’t it be nice if there was such a book or books where we could just read about God the Father? Imagine the title something like: “HOW I DID IT— God” I know that makes it too easy and it’s probably too much to ask but imagine the possibilities…. His experiences with His successes and failures He had to experience here and there. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? I would think that this would give a lot of us sinners down here a lot more hope. Maybe we might even think it’s possible to be an overcomer to become just like He is.
We’re under obligation from what is written in the scriptures to be as He is. We’re told in the book of Revelations that if we overcome, we’ll be a pillar in God’s temple so who wouldn’t want the template of that sort of blessing? It would be like the map to the Ark of the Covenant in “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” Imagine the great adventures that we could learn about God’s adventures in His past lives. What fantastic epic tales this would make wouldn’t it? I mean, if it were made into a movie, who wouldn’t go to the initial screening of that?
Perhaps I’m overstepping my bounds asking to see God the Father as a man just like me. If I could just see Jesus, how He lived in a different time as someone who had some weaknesses to overcome, then we could see just how possible it is to do what He asked us to do when He said: “Be ye perfect, even as I.” This is what Philip asked the Savior, to show him when He patiently replied:
“…Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip? he that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?” (John 14:9)
Jesus told his disciples in the Book of John that He overcame the world. He hadn’t gone to the cross or to Gethsemane yet so how did He already overcome the world? The answer is in His mortal probations. Jesus Christ was already qualified by the things He had experienced and triumphed over before He was born.
“John bore witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake; He who cometh after me, is preferred before me; for he was (qualified) before me.”(JST John 1:15)
How can you triumph over sin and the world unless you have lived in it and overcame it? The triumph over sin does not happen in the presence of God because in His presence there is no sin. It must happen in a world of opposition.
Did our Lord learn by His own experience to discern good and evil the way we do? It is written that He descended below all things. He couldn’t sin in the life He lived as our Savior, but what about before then, maybe in some previous life? Couldn’t we have access to those records?
The secret is, we already do. All those things right there in those two great witnesses waiting for those mysteries to be unlocked.
Before you cry foul, “God has never sinned, He’s the same today, yesterday, and forever” keep in mind that when sin is forgiven, it is “remembered no more”and it’s no longer part of your past, no longer part of your present and no longer part of your future because God is INFINITE. His Atonement is INFINITE.
Remitted sin goes into the sea of forgetfulness where only Satan goes fishing. When Christ suffered He said “…My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death…” and the only one that brings on suffering and death is the accuser who still remembers a few things about his past associations with us. It’s why his minions are called “familiar spirits”.
The other secret is that the war in heaven is also recorded in the Bible (JST) from the beginning of the rebellion (Isaiah 14:12-14), to the judgment (Is. 14:15-17), to the global apocalypse (Jer 4:23-28), (Gen 1:4), (Jude vs.13), to the re-population of the Earth after the first global flood (Gen 1:5-33) and to the final triumph over the rebel angels and the cleansing of the earth by fire, (Malachi 4:1-6), (JSH 1:37) “for they that come shall burn them.”
Brigham once said: “Jesus has been upon the earth a great many more times than you are aware of. When Jesus makes his next appearance upon the earth, BUT FEW OF THIS CHURCH WILL BE PREPARED TO RECEIVE HIM AND SEE HIM FACE-TO-FACE AND CONVERSE WITH HIM; But He will come to his Temple.” (Discourses of Brigham Young p.114)
As it says in the introduction of our 1830 edition of the Book of Mormon: “I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.” (Joseph Smith, Jun., November 28, 1841) For those who have approached God, or who have been approached by God, we have found the above statement to be true. Indeed, any who will live the teachings of this book, and also all the teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith Jr. will find themselves in the presence of God and His angels.”
It comes down to the purpose of the Bible and the Book of Mormon. What is their primary purpose? The primary purpose of both the Bible and the Book of Mormon is to testify of Jesus Christ and that He is our Eternal Father and God and the only God with whom we have to do, the first and the last Adam, the Alpha and Omega and I will prove it from the scriptures.
From the first page of the 1830 edition of the Book of Mormon published by the True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of Saints of the Last Days received by the revelation of Jesus Christ as our standard:
“…. to shew unto the remnant of the House of Israel how great things the Lord hath done for their fathers; and that they may know the covenants of the Lord, that they are not cast off forever; and also to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile, that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting Himself unto all nations….”
“And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms, And the angel said unto me, behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the Eternal Father! Knowest thou the meaning of the tree which thy father saw?” (1 Ne 11:21)
“And the angel spake unto me saying: These last records which thou hast seen among the Gentiles, shall establish the truth of the first, which is of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Eternal Father and the Saviour of the world; and that all men must come unto Him, or they cannot be saved.” (1 Ne 13:40)
The current LDS version of the Book of Mormon has these things hidden. This is the reason why the Lord has made the 1830 edition of the Book of Mormon our standard because it gives men the correct understanding of who God is.
Again we read from the words of the prophet Abinadi which when he gave this revelation, God’s glory was revealed, and all hell was put on notice:
“I would that ye should understand that God himself shall come down among the children of men, and shall redeem his people.” (Mosiah 15:1)
“And he (King Noah) said unto him: Abinadi, we have found an accusation against thee, and thou art worthy of death. For thou hast said that God himself should come down among the children of men; and now, for this cause thou shalt be put to death unless thou wilt recall all the words which thou hast spoken evil concerning me and my people.” (Mosiah 17:7-8)
The same holds true for the Joseph Smith translation of the Bible which gives the reader those plain and precious things which are not present in the King James Version.
“All things are delivered to me of my Father; and no man knoweth that the Son is the Father, and the Father is the Son, but him to whom the Son will reveal it.” (JST Luke 10:23)
Compare this with the same verse from the King James Version and decide for yourself which version gives greater clarity:
“All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.” (KJV Luke 10:22)
Joseph Smith gave us by revelation who the Son is and he makes it clear in the Joseph Smith Translation.
Why are the majority of Mormons still using the King James version of the Bible when they could have the revealed version that Joseph translated instead? To remain in ignorance is to remain spiritually dead.
“Let us here observe, that three things are necessary in order that any rational and intelligent being may exercise faith in God unto life and salvation. First, that he actually exists. Secondly, a correct idea of his character, perfections, and attributes. Thirdly, an actual knowledge that the course of life which he is pursuing is according to His will.” (3rd Lecture on Faith)
“It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings.” (Proverbs 25:2)
To be continued….