Thursday, January 15, 2015

Mormonism’s Pre-existence

The following is copied from the tract booklet, “Mormonism’s Pre-existence,” which was published by the Utah Christian Tract Society.  Utah Christian Tract Society was founded in 1956 and continued until 1990, when UCTS merged with Mormonism Research Ministry, who gave me permission to post it here.


The Mormon teaching of the pre-existence of man is one of the basic tenets of Mormon faith.  This peculiar doctrine claims that "spirit children" are born of a heavenly father and mother and are eagerly waiting to enter human bodies.  Joseph Smith, the Mormon prophet, taught that everything was created spiritually before it was created naturally upon the earth.

In his "Inspired Version," which is simply Smith's revision of the King James Authorized Translation, altered to comply with his philosophy, Smith changed Genesis 1:5 and made it read: "For I, the Lord God, created all things of which I have spoken, spiritually, before they were naturally upon the face of the earth..."  Then a new verse nine is added to the text and reads: "Nevertheless, all things were before created, but spiritually were they created and made, according to my word."  (See Joseph Smith's "Inspired Version," Gen. 1:5 and 9).

Mormon Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, in his book, "Mormon Doctrine," stated: "In the pre-existent eternity various degrees of valiance and devotion to the truth were exhibited by different groups of our Father's spirit-offspring... Those who were less valiant in pre-existence and who thereby had certain spiritual restrictions imposed upon them during mortality are known to us as the Negroes...  Negroes in this life are denied the priesthood; under no circumstances can they hold this delegation of authority from the Almighty."  (1966 Ed. pgs. 526, 527).

It seems that for Mormonism in the progressive revelation claimed by the Mormon church, yesterday's "truth" becomes today's "falsehood," and by corollary, today's truth" will be tomorrow's "falsehood."  The pre-existence doctrine of Mormonism raises some difficult problems for the Mormon apologist.

Milton R. Hunter, a Mormon general authority, in his book, "The Gospel Through the Ages," Pg. 98, declares: "A complete realization that we are the offspring of Heavenly Parents - that we were begotten and born into the spirit world and grew to maturity in that realm - became an integral part of Mormon Philosophy.”

Brigham Young, second prophet of Mormonism, stated:  "God made his children like Himself to stand erect, and has endowed them with intelligence and power and dominion over all His works, and gave them the same attributes which He himself possesses.  He created man, as we create our children; for there is no other process of creation in heaven, on the earth, in the earth, or under the earth, or in all the eternities that is, that were, or that ever will be." (Gospel Through the Ages, Pg. 99 and Journal of Discourses, Vol. II, pg. 122)

The unalterable law and order of the universe in creation is to produce "after their kind.”  Mormon writer Lynn A. McKinlay in his book, "Life Eternal," page 80 says: "God Himself operates within the bound of eternal irrevocable laws," yet Mormon theology teaches that God is an exalted man "with a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man's" and that "All spirit is matter." (Doc. & Cov., Sec. 130:22-131:7).  The question we have often asked, and which as yet remains unanswered by Mormon theologians, is this: If "God made His children like Himself with the same attributes He Himself possesses..." why are His children not like Himself, with bodies of flesh and bones, instead of spirits needing to come into this world in order to take bodies?

Again, in McKinlay's book, the following is recorded: "That by Him, and through Him, and of Him, the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.  Now what about this, only one father for all the billions and billions of inhabitants upon the earth?  So says the Scripture, (Mormon scripture, Doc. & Cov. Sec. 76:24) and not only this earth, but according to verse 24, the worlds...and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.  Confirming this in our very own language, we have in a doctrinal exposition put out by the First Presidency and the Twelve of the Church, this statement:...'The purpose of these scriptures is to the effect that the Eternal Father, whom we designate, by the exalted name Elohim, is the literal parent of our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of the spirits of the human race, - the literal father Elohim is the father in every sense that Jesus Christ is so designated, and distinctively he is the father of spirits.'  The First Presidency and the Twelve agree here on this Doctrinal Exposition that we, all the human race, are literally the spirit offspring of a father - one father." (Life Eternal, pg. 35)

It staggers the imagination as to what Elder McKinlay is saying, in "spelling out" this Mormon doctrine of pre-existence so vividly in proclaiming: "Now what about this, only one father of all the billions of inhabitants upon the earth?  And not only this earth, but the worlds and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.”

It is difficult to grasp the magnitude of the word billion.  A more realistic value is obtained when applied to the constant measure of time:

One billion minutes ago Christ was still on earth!  One billion hours ago the book of Genesis had not been written! 

The world population today, numbers four and one half billion. 

The people of planet earth could begin marching five abreast, past a given point, into eternity and the march could go on forever! 

Before the world's population would pass the given point, new generations would have been born and entered the marching columns, continuing forever!

The number of people in the marching columns passing the given point would be - 300 every minute, 18,000 every hour, 432,000 every day, 157,680,000 every year - forever!

Considering earth's population of approximately four and one half billion today, and the billions since Adam, who have passed on, and according to Mormon theology, all requiring pre-existent spirits, offspring of one heavenly father, it must have taken billions of years past for the one heavenly father to produce these "billions and billions" of "spirit children" just for planet earth.  The Mormon prophets claim "that the worlds (Doc. &  Cov. 76:24) are inhabited with "begotten sons and daughters unto God.”

Joseph Smith even described the inhabitants of the moon!  And Brigham Young claimed that there were inhabitants on the sun! (Young Women's Journal, Vol. III and Journal of Discourses, Vol. 13, pg. 271).  Also, according to "The Doctrinal Exposition by the First Presidency and the Twelve of the Mormon Church" recorded in "Life Eternal" pg. 35, "only on father is the father of spirits."  But let us return to earth.

Continuing to pursue this incredible Mormon doctrine of pre-existence, just to keep the present earth's population replenished would require producing 432,000 spirit children every day - forever! 

Nativity requires a nine month gestation period, and as Brigham Young stated: "God made His children like Himself... He created man as we create our children; for there is no other process of creation in heaven, on the earth, in the earth, or under the earth, or in all eternities that is, that were, or that ever will be." (Journal of Discourses, Vol. II, pg. 122).  So, in the Mormon scheme of things, millions upon millions of polygamist heavenly mothers would have to be involved, and certainly the "one father" exalted-man-God of Mormonism would have to travel like streaked lightning, flitting about amongst his millions of wives, visiting each one for a split second, producing three hundred spirit children every minute - eighteen thousand every hour - four hundred and thirty-two thousand every day - one hundred and fifty-seven million, six hundred and eighty thousand every year - just to replenish planet earth!

It seems the reason that Joseph Smith and other Mormon leaders have gone to such lengths to try and establish the doctrine of things being created spiritually before their creation naturally, becomes clear when we realize that they desire to extend the supposition that we are all children of God, having been begotten "in the spirit" by God and a heavenly mother, and that God is our literal father.  They thereby endeavor to escape, and make void, the Bible doctrine of the absolute necessity of being born again in order to become a child of God. (John 3:3; 1:12-13).

It is simply amazing how people stumble at the simplicity of the truth as revealed in God's Word, the Bible, and are taken in and tricked by the irrational and inane philosophies of men!

The quotations from John 3:3 and 1:12, 13 are direct statements and cannot be misunderstood, misinterpreted, or taken out of context. "ye MUST be born again!”

The Bible also says: "Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual." (1 Corin. 15:46)  The truth portrayed in this statement completely destroys Mormonism's theory of pre-existence, and all of its senseless ramifications.  The Bible is also very specific in proclaiming the spiritual birth and how spiritual birth is obtained.

Jesus said, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God." (John 3:3) and the Apostle Peter declared: "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever." (1 Peter 1:23).  Being "Biblically born again" of the Spirit is a God-given supernatural event.  The great miracle of being truly "born again" and becoming the sons of God is explained in John 1:12, 13.  Notice that the Word of God is very explicit in declaring the miracle is God-given and completely excludes any works of man.  "But as many as received Him [the Christ of the Bible], 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 [it is not hereditary], nor of the will of the flesh [it is not of man's desires], nor of the will of man [it is not by man's direction, order or institution], but of God.”

The simple steps of being born again are, acknowledge your sin and need, then receive - accept - believe on - Jesus Christ as your own personal Saviour and Lord.  "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved, and thy house..." "Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."  (Acts 16:31; 4:12).  "Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation." NOW, TODAY, receive the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour and "you will find rest unto your soul."  (See 2 Cor. 6:2 and Matt. 11:28-30).

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