Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Society & CultureReligion & Spirituality · 7 years ago

Are LDS beliefs polytheistic?

The answers to this question - http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=As3Dm... - seem to indicate that they believe in three different gods, which would be polytheism.

(Note: many Jewish authorities do not think the Christian idea of the trinity is polytheism.)

I'd prefer answers from Mormons. I'm not interested in the comments of people who hate the LDS church.

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  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Actually, Paul says it best in his first letter to the Corinthians (Chapter 8): (5) "For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) (6) But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him."

    LDS thinking is this: There is a ruling body in heaven, known as the Godhead. At its head is God, the Father, and serving with him is his Son, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. All power and authority is the Father's and he is God. Through divine investiture, he has given authority to act in his name to his Son, Jesus Christ, and to the Holy Ghost. And, when the Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost are acting in behalf of and for the Father, they are, for all intents and purposes, God, for they are using the authority of the Father in their mission and roll, serving the Father and following the will of the Father.

    Linda Lou's response left out the authority part of the equation, which remains with the Father and is granted by the Father to the other two members of the Godhead.

    This topic of the apparent polytheistic view of three gods as the ruling body of heaven was present in the early church as well. A rather extensive article is worth the read and was published in 1987 in the Church magazine, Ensign: http://www.lds.org/ensign/1987/07/is-the-lds-view-... -- in that article, Nelson writes, "As the church entered the third century, many ridiculed Christianity because they regarded it as polytheistic—that is, it had a theology of three Gods: the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. By this time the more sophisticated had rejected polytheistic pagan deities and had become monotheistic, accepting but one God. So the issue for the church was how to make Christian theology accord with respectable opinion."

    Thus, the early church was facing the same problem that is being posed by your question. The answer was the Trinity dogma, which was developed during the fourth century and presents major problems of its own with respect to the nature of God.

    As far as the LDS view is concerned, one of the best sources to help people understand our teachings are the manuals we actually use in our classrooms. In this case, Lesson 18 of this year's Gospel Doctrine class (adult Sunday School class) has the pertinent reference about divine investiture with respect to Jesus Christ. The same can be applied to the roll the Holy Ghost plays in our lives. (http://www.lds.org/manual/book-of-mormon-gospel-do... ) This year's course of study is the Book of Mormon.

    ===

    3. “The Father and the Son” (Mosiah 15:2)

    Use the following information to explain Abinadi’s teachings in Mosiah 15:1–9:

    When Abinadi spoke of Jesus as “the Father and the Son,” he did not teach that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are the same being. Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are three separate and distinct personages (D&C 130:22).

    When ancient prophets spoke of God or of the Lord, they often referred to Jehovah, the premortal Messiah (Mosiah 13:33–34; 14:6). Thus, Abinadi taught of Jesus Christ when he said, “God himself shall come down among the children of men, and shall redeem his people” (Mosiah 15:1; see also Mosiah 7:27–28). Abinadi’s teachings in Mosiah 15:1–9 refer to Jesus’ Fatherly roles and to His roles as the Son of God.

    Jesus’ roles as Father include (a) His work as “the Father of heaven and earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning” (Mosiah 3:8); (b) His mission as the Father of those who accept His gospel and follow Him (Mosiah 5:7; 15:10–13; Ether 3:14); and (c) His authority to speak and act in behalf of Heavenly Father, which has been termed “divine investiture of authority.” Jesus’ roles as the Son of God include (a) His Atonement for the sins of the world (Mosiah 15:6–9) and (b) His service as our Mediator and Advocate with Heavenly Father (Jacob 4:10–11; D&C 45:3–5).

    Abinadi said that Jesus was called the Son “because he dwelleth in flesh” and the Father “because he was conceived by the power of God” (Mosiah 15:2–3; see also D&C 93:3–4). When Abinadi spoke of “the will of the Son being swallowed up in the will of the Father” (Mosiah 15:7), he referred to Jesus subjecting His flesh to His spirit (Mosiah 15:2–5; see also 3 Nephi 1:14). When Jesus subjected His flesh to His spirit, He also subjected His will to the will of Heavenly Father (Matthew 26:39; D&C 19:16–19).

  • veekay
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    Mormonism is interesting in that all worthy members of the church, according to the doctrine, can become gods and goddesses and make worlds. I've heard many times missionaries explain this concept with "wouldn't you want your child to grow up and become like you (achieve what you achieved)", referring to how God the Father plans to guide his children to become like him, according the faith.

    Also there is a quote "as man is god once was, as god is man may become" by Lorenzo Snow, 5th prophet of the church. Although some may say that quote wasn't official church doctrine, the prophet said it and the notion has been very prominent in the religion. So basically what it takes to become like god according to the religion is complete devotion to the LDS faith. This process is also described in temples and their endowment and marriage ceremonies.

  • 7 years ago

    I am a Mormon. Technically, polytheism is the worship of multiple gods, not the belief in them. Modern Jews may believe in one god, but ancient jews clearly believed in multiple gods. Henotheistic may be the better description, although this can be misleading as well.

    We worship the father. Jesus and the Holy Ghost speak for the father. In one sense it could be said that we worship Christ, since we sing about him, but that isn't the way that we look at it. We pray to the father in Christ's name.

  • 7 years ago

    We believe in the 17th Chapter of John where Christ prays to the Father that we may all become ONE as he is one with the Father. Read it carefully.

    We also believe in Genesis, where in the creation plural is used, and that God created man in his own image and likeness.

    These are a couple concepts where LDS theology is closer to the Bible than most Bible thumpers.

    Notice any similarities in the scriptures below?

    Genesis 1:26,27

    And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

    So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

    Genesis 5:3

    And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth:

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  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    No, I don't suppose you are interested in the other side. From what it appears by the phrasing of your question, you seem to favor being one-sided. Case in point: Ever take into consideration those two bold green words above every Y! question? For some not-so-odd reason, even though they are deliberately made bold, few accept the fact.

    The official doctrine of the LDS is technically henotheistic, despite disputed evidence to the contrary that they are polytheists. They believe an untold number of gods "exist", but are allowed only one per galaxy*, which, all because Joseph Smith said so, they now follow.

    The bible is completely and wholly monotheistic, nevertheless.

    Source(s): Henotheism: Belief in many deities of which only one is the supreme deity. 1. One chief God among multiple gods and goddesses of other powers, areas, or importance. The LDS alone believes the above. Even Hinduism, which comes closest to LDS belief system in multiple universal gods, recognizes there are no other gods other than those of the earth. http://carm.org/henotheism - Their god is a god, their mormon christ is a god, yet their capable of being in only one place at a time "holy ghost" is not a god, yet it is considered a deity to them? How so? Oops! I forgot. You aren't interested in such things. *Or, to some mormons, one god per solar system. You never know with mormons.
  • We believe that through exaltation, we become immortal and perfected (gods) but we only worship our Father in Heaven, and our Savior Jesus Christ.

    We believe that God is really our Father. It's a familial relationship, not a master/servant relationship

  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    That is true, to some extent. They believe that the "Godhead" is three distinct personalities, but they act with one purpose.

    They DO NOT believe the "three in one" concept of the traditional Trinity doctrine.

    Source(s): Ex-Mormon leader/teacher. I used to teach Mormon Doctrine. Not a hater.
  • 7 years ago

    God, the father of Jesus Christ is the only god for us. He is our god.

    There is only one god that we worship and that is god the father of the lord Jesus Christ.

    34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods? (New Testament, John, Chapter 10)

    5 For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,)

    6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him. (New Testament, 1 Corinthians, Chapter 8)

    26 ¶And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. (Old Testament, Genesis, Chapter 1)

    ^ us, our ^

    In essence; we don't believe in the trinity. We don't believe we are made in the image of a god who is an unknown spirit essence with three personalities who sent Jesus Christ which is himself to sacrifice himself to appease himself, who prayed to himself, and acknowledged that he was greater than himself and when he ascended into heaven sat down of the right hand of himself. Mormons believe in logic, and that god is not so mystical ly strange as some make him out to be.

    Here's a conference talk from an LDS apostle about the issue. Watch video or listen to audio on the right:

    http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2007/10/the-...

    Hope this helps,

    Simon.

  • Ammon
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Jesus Christ is God. Is Jesus Christ a giraffe or a holograph??? No.

    Jesus Christ is a resurrected human being who now has a glorified human body and who lives in yonder Heavens at the right hand of Heavenly Father.

    Jesus Christ is real. Jesus Christ is human. Jesus Christ was resurrected. Jesus Christ is a resurrected Human and Jesus Christ is God.

    Members of THE Church Of JESUS CHRIST Of Latter Day Saints pray to Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus Christ and say Amen at the end of each prayer, indicating that the Holy Ghost is diffuse through them.

    Latter Day Saints pray to one and only one God, that being Heavenly Father, except in the presence of Jesus Christ.

    The God-Consciousness is one consciousness. The God-Consciousness is this. It is the Perfect-Righteousness-Consciousness.

    Those who keep the commandments of Jesus Christ because they have faith in Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ will reward them by allowing them to become one with the God-Consciousness themselves, and that for all eternal time.

    Jesus Christ said, by their fruits ye shall know them. Those who are part of the God-Consciousness do the acts of that level of consciousness. And they think the way that God would have them think.

    They are chaste, they are kind, they are charitable, and they are filled with the love of Jesus Christ.

    Jesus Christ is in the Consciousness of the Father, and the Father is in the consciousness of the Son Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost is in their consciousness, and you can be a part of that consciousness, if you progress to the

    Perfectly-Righteous level of consciousness.

    The meaning of life is this; to progress to the highest level of consciousness that you can in this life. If you progress to the God-Consciousness level in this life, then in the next life you will be a part of the Consciousness of Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and The Holy Ghost, and all the Saints who have every lived.

    Because the God-Consciousness is one consciousness. And that consciousness is the Pure-Love-Of-God-Consciousness.

    To reach the highest level of the highest Celestial Consciousness, a person must be married to someone who is of the opposite sex in a Temple Of Jesus Christ. This is because there are two parts to the highest level of the highest consciousness. One part is Feminine and the other part is Masculine.

    Together, perfect and eternal joy can be attained, by keeping all the commandments of Jesus Christ. The way to Jesus Christ is by keeping the commandments of Jesus Christ. Through faith, nothing doubting, nothing is impossible.

    Love can conquer all, for those with faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is love. And love is Jesus Christ.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWnq2JrAT7I

    Youtube thumbnail

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ILJRabrsJAw

    Youtube thumbnail

    http://vimeo.com/33008319

    http://Mormon.org Chat.

    God bless.

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