Mormonism and the nature of God/Early teachings

Early teachings about God in the Book of Mormon, from Joseph Smith, and among Church members

Early teachings about God in the Book of Mormon, from Joseph Smith, and among Church members

Joseph Smith's early conception of God

Summary: It is claimed that Joseph Smith initially taught standard Nicene trinitarianism. The early documents tell a different story, however.

Jump to Subtopic:

Modalism in the Book of Mormon?

Summary: It is claimed that the Book of Mormon teaches the trinitarian heresy of modalism or Sabellianism. This reading misinterprets some Book of Mormon verses, and ignores Book of Mormon texts which clearly contradict this reading.

Jump to Subtopic:

Lecture on Faith 5 and the nature of God the Father

Summary: Lectures on Faith, which used to be part of the Doctrine and Covenants, teach that God is a spirit. Joseph Smith's later teachings contradict this. More generally, critics argue that Joseph Smith taught an essentially "trinitarian" view of the Godhead until the mid 1830s, thus proving the Joseph was "making it up" as he went along.

Jump to Subtopic:

Early LDS beliefs about God

Summary: Some evangelical Christians attempt to show that the LDS idea of deification is unbiblical, unchristian and untrue. They seem to think that this doctrine is the main reason why the LDS reject the Psychological Trinity.

Jump to Subtopic:

Repudiated concepts: Adam-God theory

Summary: Brigham Young taught that Adam, the first man, was God the Father. Since this teaching runs counter to the story told in Genesis and commonly accepted by Christians, critics accuse Brigham of being a false prophet. Also, because modern Latter-day Saints do not believe Brigham's "Adam-God" teachings, critics accuse Mormons of either changing their teachings or rejecting teachings of prophets they find uncomfortable or unsupportable.

Jump to Subtopic: