Do Mormons believe that God had sex with Mary?

No. Mormons do not believe any such thing. This is a myth perpetuated by anti-Mormons in order to make the Mormon church look like a bunch of crazy lunatics. We believe that Mary was a virgin before and after she gave birth to Jesus as stated in the Book of Mormon in 1 Nephi 11:18-20:

And he said unto me: Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God, after the manner of the flesh. And it came to pass that I beheld that she was carried away in the Spirit; and after she had been carried away in the Spirit for the space of a time the angel spake unto me, saying: Look! And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms.

What Mormons do believe is that Christ is literally the Son of God, but there is no official statement nor any common belief as to the means by which the conception of Christ was effected, although the above statement would seem to make it clear that God did not have sex with Mary seeing as how she is referred to as still being a virgin even after the birth of Christ.

So why do people say that Mormons believe that God had sex with Mary? By taking statements by LDS Church members out of context, as usual. None of these statements say that God had sex with Mary nor did those from whom the quotes are taken intend to communicate such a concept. The full intent of their statements is to declare that Jesus is literally the Son of God. None of them make statements as to how Mary got to be pregnant, other than that it was of God and not of man. What they do affirm is that God is literally the father of Jesus Christ. That Christ had a mortal mother and an immortal father. That Christ is God incarnate, or the offspring of God in the flesh.

For more information read Does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Teach that God had Sex with Mary? and a letter from Harold B. Lee, President of the LDS Church, on the matter.

  • stmatt

    You said, "No. Mormons do not believe any such thing. This is a myth perpetuated by anti-Mormons…"

    CORRECTION: Actually, I have talke to several Mormons who believe that Mary was married to the LDS Heavenly Father and that he had sexual relations with the Virgin Mary, (at the time). There is an LDS doctrine taught by Joseph Smith that mater cannot be created from nothing. If the Virgin Mary gave her unfertilzed egg to make the body of Jesus, what did the Heavenly Father provide and how did it happen? LDS Leaders do not discuss it. Harold B. Lee was asked about the Immaculate Conception and he said, "Never have I talked about 'sexual intercourse' between Deity and the mother of the Savior."

    Notice he did not say, "That's obsurd. Mormons do not ever teach this!"

    The LDS Apostle Lee said, "If teachers were wise in speaking of this matter about which the Lord has said but very little, they would rest their discussion on this subject with merely the words which are recorded on this subject by Luke 1:34-35: Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." Remember that that being who brought about the Immaculate Conception was a divine personage. We need not question his method to accomplish his purposes."

    Do you see the problem? The "little" said is about a "divine personage" who came from heaven and did something to impregnate the Virgin Mary. What did the Heavenly Father do??? Mormons can only speculate that there was a mysterious insemination. That sexual transmission of semen is Mormonism.

    On the other hand there is the ex-nihilo teaching of the Immaculate Conception. Mormons cannot say that the male DNA or chromosomes came from nothing. However, Christians can say this and really believe the words of Isaiah 7:14 which says "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel."

    Come to the reall Jesus of the Bible. The real Jesus was conceived in a miracle by ex-nihilo through the Holy Spirit.

    I hope and pray you, your wife and your daughter learn this.

    In Jesus' name,

    Matt

    • Tyrone

      I hope and pray that you brush up your intellect, walk with Christ, focus on God.

    • Joseph

      Just a correction: You use "Immaculate Conception" to describe the conception of Jesus which is wrong. Actually the Immaculate Conception is a doctrine made infallible in the Catholic Church to describe the sinless birth of Mary in preparation for her future as the mother of Jesus. The Immaculate Conception has nothing to do with the conception of Jesus. Your comment is good though.

  • http://? James Horne

    Matt, your reply completely missed the mark. You argue against the absurd with the equally absurd and a scripture from Isaiah completely taken out of context. By now, an elementary inquiry into the word "virgin" cleary indicates the correct translation of the hebrew word to be "young woman." Moreover, the prophecy has nothing to do with a Messiah in the far off future, but in contemporary time with the prophecy. And finally, Immanuel was never the name of Yesuha. So Matt, like the author of the gospel that cited this scripture was being completely dishonest by using this scripture to prove the divinity of Jesus. It is almost made from whole cloth to assert an entrenched conclusion. Apparently, even early Christians used apologists to distort facts to fit beliefs.

    Joshua, seems to fit in fine with such dishonest practices. He may be able to say the current church does not teach that God had sex with Mary, but he cannot make the claim that it is a myth and that it was never taught nor that all mormons do not believe it. He can try to split hairs by saying some leaders were just speaking as men but did not really know. And that since it was never officially canonized by whatever standard chosen*, it was never offical teachings. But again, there are no offical canonized versions for most of uniquely Mormon practices(ie temple ceremonies, tithing, application of the word of wisdom, priesthood ban, polygamy, number of children, swearing, appropriate dress, nature of Native Americans, masturbation, roles of women, and so on). But as this explaination stirs up confusion and more questions, it is easier to just falsely deride it as a myth and move on.

    *There is no official standard for determining what is doctrine and what is speculation, as the official standard does not meet the official standard. Nor do most of the core established doctrines. As far as I have researched.

  • Kyle Welch

    James

    I think you miss the point. We believe Jesus was part man ("son of man") and part god ("son of god") both referenced in the NT. The key aspect of our faith is that this genetic makeup is literal. However this does not mean that here was copulation. With artificial insemination, test-tube babies and cloning just being discovered by man, you would think Heavenly Father would have a way.

    Excellent link to see how this is viewed by those of the faith. http://www.fairlds.org/FAIR_Brochures/Did_God_hav

    • Kiwi Christian

      Why would anyone go to a biased mormon source?

      • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

        Why would anyone go to a source that is biased against Mormons if they want to know what Mormons really believe?

        • Kiwi Christian

          1) you confuse people who are against mormons with those that are against mormonISM. 2) The history of the LDS clearly shows they hide their past mistakes, failures and changes, etc. Thats why you need to go to an un-biased independent source.

          • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

            And what might be an example of an independent, unbiased source?

          • Charles
  • Clark

    Matt,

    You first said, "I have talked to several Mormons who believe that Mary was married to the LDS Heavenly Father and that he had sexual relations with the Virgin Mary, (at the time)."

    I also know Mormons who vote Republican and some who vote Democrat. I know some Mormons who drink Coca-Cola and other who refuse to. The old "I know a Mormon who believes that…" argument is at best very weak, since every person has their own individual thoughts and ideas about everything.

    You next said, "Harold B. Lee was asked about the Immaculate Conception and he said, “Never have I talked about ‘sexual intercourse’ between Deity and the mother of the Savior.”

    Notice he did not say, “That’s obsurd. Mormons do not ever teach this!”

    So in other words, because President Lee did not denounce the doctrine in the exact wording you wish, it therefore makes it true? That's stretching things quite a bit, wouldn't you say?

    In reference to the scripture quoted by Harold B. Lee, you next said, "Do you see the problem? The “little” said is about a “divine personage” who came from heaven and did something to impregnate the Virgin Mary. What did the Heavenly Father do??? Mormons can only speculate that there was a mysterious insemination. That sexual transmission of semen is Mormonism."

    With all due respect, are you aware of your complete and total contradiction with this statement? If "Mormons can only speculate" how Jesus Christ was conceived, than your follow up statement, "That sexual transmission of semen is Mormonism," is totally and completely without merit. Either Mormons are speculating or they are not.

    You next said, "Mormons cannot say that the male DNA or chromosomes came from nothing."

    Who said it did, and what does that have to do with sexual tramsmission? You're under the obvious assumption that the only way God could have transmitted a male chromosome into Mary is by having sex with her. Can I assume then you think God is limited in his ability and that he can only do certain things the way man does them?

    Finally you said, "Come to the real Jesus of the Bible. The real Jesus was conceived in a miracle by ex-nihilo through the Holy Spirit."

    Does the "real" Jesus believe in stating church doctrine based upon hearsay, assumption and twisting of people's words?

  • BobS

    You are all nut jobs. Take a biology class.

  • Clark

    James – Please show me one LDS Church quote, anywhere, that says, "Mary had sex with God."

    You accuse Joshua of "splitting hairs" yet LDS critics often do the same thing. They push LDS Church members into a corner by taking a half a quote here and a half a quote there without looking at the whole thing.

    For example, many LDS Church critics use the following quote from Bruce R. McConkie to say that YES, the LDS Church does believe God had sex with Mary in order to have Jesus Christ.

    "And Christ was born into the world as the literal Son of this Holy Being; he was born in the same personal, real, and literal sense that any mortal son is born to a mortal father. There is nothing figurative about his paternity; he was begotten, conceived and born in the normal and natural course of events."

    But then, later in the same quote, McConkie says, "Our Lord is the only mortal person ever born to a virgin, because he is the only person who ever had an immortal Father. Mary, his mother, "was carried away in the Spirit."

    If you read half of a quote, you only get half of the information. If you read the whole quote, you might learn a little more.

  • James Horne

    Clark, I merely stated that Joshua does not speak for all Mormons, so he cannot say what they all believe; and as many Mormons do believe that God had sex with Mary(including the ones Matt knows, my: father, seminary teachers, bishop, and home teachers) it cannot be an anti-Mormon lie. At best, it is a confusing teaching that no one is sure about, especially because God's mouthpiece an Earth is silent about it. However, when you find a quote of doctrine or teaching from the only source that speaks on behalf of Mormons saying that God did not have sex* with Mary, I will agree that all Mormons do not believe it and it is an anti-Mormon myth.

    *It must meet your standard though. He cannot use euphemisms and must say boldly fleshly intercourse like physical copulation or sex. I will also accept something along the lines that God does not have semen as that would make the sex point moot.

  • mormons call their o

    “… I believe the Father came down from heaven, as the apostles said he did, and begat the Saviour of the world; for he is the ONLY-begotten of the Father, which could not be if the Father did not actually beget him in person…. I believe the Father came down in His tabernacle and begat Jesus Christ.”
    (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, volume 1, page 238)

    “God, the Father of our spirits, became the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh…. The fleshy body of Jesus required a Mother as well as a Father. Therefore, the Father and Mother of Jesus, according to the flesh, must have been associated together in the capacity of Husband and Wife; hence the Virgin Mary must have, for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father…. He had a lawful right to overshadow the Virgin Mary in the capacity of a husband, and beget a Son, although she was espoused to another; for the law which He gave to govern men and women, was not intended to govern Himself, or to prescribe rules for his own conduct.”
    (Orson Pratt, The Seer, page 158)

    “Now, we are told in scriptures that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God in the flesh. Well, now for the benefit of the older ones, how are children begotten? I answer just as Jesus Christ was begotten of the flesh… Jesus is the only person who had our Heavenly Father as the father of his body.”
    (Joseph Fielding Smith, Family Home Evening Manual, pages 125, 126, 1972)

    “Christ was Begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”
    (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 547, 1966)

    “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the most literal sense. The body in which He performed His mission in the flesh was sired by that some Holy Being we worship as God, our Eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost.”
    (Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, page 7)

    “[Jesus Christ] was willing to make payment because of his great love for mankind, and he was able to make payment because he lived a sinless life and because he was actually, literally, biologically the Son of God in the flesh.”
    (Messages for Exaltation, For the Sunday Schools of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Gospel Doctrine Class, pages 378-379, 1967)

    Orson Pratt
    "God, the Father of our spirits, became the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh. Hence, the Father saith concerning him, 'Thou are my Son, this day have I begotten thee.' We are informed in the first chapter of Luke, that Mary was chosen by the Father as a choice virgin, through whom He begat Jesus. The angel said unto the Virgin Mary, 'The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore, also, that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.' After the power of the Highest had overshadowed Mary, and she had by that means conceived, she related the circumstance to her cousin Elizabeth in the following words: 'He that is Mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is His name.' It seems from this relation that the Holy Ghost accompanied 'the Highest' when He overshadowed the Virgin Mary and begat Jesus; and from this circumstance some have supposed that the body of Jesus was begotten of the Holy Ghost without the instrumentality of the immediate presence of the Father. There is no doubt that the Holy Ghost came upon Mary to sanctify her, and make her holy, and prepare her to endure the glorious presence of "the Highest', that when 'He' should 'overshadow' her she might conceive, being filled with the Holy Ghost; hence the angel said, as recorded in Matthew, 'That which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost;' that is, the Holy Ghost gave her strength to abide in the presence of the Father without being consumed, but it was the personage of the Father who begat the body of Jesus; and for this reason Jesus is called 'the Only Begotten of the Father;' that is, the only one in this world whose fleshly body was begotten by the Father. There were millions of sons and daughters who he begat before the foundation of this world, but they were spirits, and not bodies of flesh and bones; whereas, both the spirit and body of Jesus were begotten by the Father—the spirit having been begotten in heaven many ages before the tabernacle was begotten upon the earth.
    "The fleshly body of Jesus required a Mother as well as a Father. Therefore, the Father and Mother of Jesus, according to the flesh, must have been associated together in the capacity of Husband and Wife; hence the Virgin Mary must have been, for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father; we use the term lawful Wife, because it would be blasphemous in the highest degree to say that He overshadowed her or begat the Savior unlawfully. It would have been unlawful for any man to have interfered with Mary, who was already espoused to Joseph; for such a heinous crime would have subjected both the guilty parties to death, according to the law of Moses. But God having created all men and women, had the most perfect right to do with His own creation, according to His holy will and pleasure: He had a lawful right to overshadow the Virgin Mary in the capacity of a husband, and beget a Son, although she was espoused to another; for the law which He gave to govern men and women was not intended to govern Himself, or to prescribe rules for His own conduct. It was also lawful in Him, after having thus dealt with Mary, to give her to Joseph her espoused husband. Whether God the Father gave Mary to Joseph for time only, or for time and eternity, we are not informed. Inasmuch as God was the first husband to her, it may be that He only gave her to be the wife of Joseph while in the mortal state, and that He intended after the resurrection to again take her as one of his own wives to raise up immortal spirits in eternity.
    "As God the Father begat the fleshly body of Jesus, so He, before the world began, begat his spirit. As the body required an earthly Mother, so his spirit required a heavenly Mother. As God associated in the capacity of a husband with the earthly mother, so likewise he associated in the same capacity with the heavenly one; earthly things being in the likeness of heavenly things; and that which is temporal being in the likeness of that which is eternal; or, in other words, the laws of generation upon the earth are after the order of the laws of generation in heaven" (The Seer, pp. 158-9; cf. B. H. Roberts, Defense of the Faith and the Saints, vol 2, p. 270)
    "We have now clearly shown that God the Father had a plurality of wives, one or more being in eternity, by whom He begat our spirits as well as the spirit of Jesus His First Born, and another being upon the earth by whom He begat the tabernacle of Jesus, as His Only Begotten in this world." (The Seer, pp. 172-3)

  • here ya go

    All of these references are mormon quotes of God having sex with mary.

    (Orson Pratt, The Seer, page 158)

    Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 547, 1966)

    (Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, page 7)

    (Messages for Exaltation, For the Sunday Schools of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Gospel Doctrine Class, pages 378-379, 1967)

    (The Seer, pp. 172-3)

  • Matt

    FYI Immaculate Conception refers to the Catholic doctrine of the Virgin Mary's conception, not Jesus' conception. Jesus' birth is called the Incarnation. But most Catholics don't even know this. ha

  • Steve

    Wow, that list of quotes sure killed the discussion.

  • Joshua Steimle

    I'll respond in due time, once I have some…

  • dion

    Still waiting for the reply. There is none, so come home to true faith friend.

    • Joshua Steimle

      It might take me a few months to even get around to researching it, since I've hit bigger fish to fry at the moment, but I'll get to it eventually.

  • Daniel

    Followers of the Church of Jesus Christ believe that Jesus is the literal Son of God. This is part of the good news of the gospel. Have faith in the power of God.

  • Jason

    Joshua' You know the book of mormon clearly states Mary was a virgin & that satan is a liar & will do what he can to decieve, & alot of those AntiMormons or AntiChrists Are very angry people who will even bare false witness at times & whose minds have been blinded so they cant see the truth & start looking for so called faults or coincedinces to blind & confuse others. Or even do know the truth but are so upset that they will lie & do what they can to get back at the church who have offended them.

    A good example of looking & finding faults that are not there are the September11 LooseChange & Man on the moon conspiracies. If you are someone deliberatly looking for faults into something & you look hard enough into it, you will then find coincidences & faults etc that aren't there & can end up blinding that persons mind into believing theres a cover up or something.

    These are the sort of people who can just get angrier & angrier Everytime you confound them with the gospel truth,

    These people are unfortunatly lost, -Why do you think there are so many different churches out there, all in disagreement with one another, & alot of them are evangelical , but yet they will say to people like you, Come over to this side "where alot of them are confused & don't know which church to join & are in disagreement with their own", & theres a good chance if they do end up moving to another town after finally finding a church, that they will then go through the whole searching for another church to be Comfortable with syndrome again. -Or will decide to start their own Church if they dont find one they agree with. Just look at the great & beautiful Joyce Myer or Joel Olsteens father who instead of helping to build someone elses church & be united ended up building their own. Just More Confusion for the Christian World. But yet they say its the mormons who are going to hell not them.

    Joyce Myer makes it clear that she used to feel she could preach better than others she would see & hear preach.

    Remember "Gods House Is A House Of Order ,Not A House Of Confusion"

    Every time I have travelled & gone to an LDS Church ,I have found its the same setup & order wherever I have gone. But the amount of people or so called christians I have heard say "I'm still searching for a church I can feel comfortable with,or I dont want to join an organised church". Which doesnt make sense when thats exactly what Jesus & his Apostles did etc. -They built a church that they wanted to be the same everywhere but it ended up falling into apostasy as the apostles died off etc.

    2Cor 4: 3-4 (3)But if our gospel be hid,it is hid to them that are lost. (4)In whom the God of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

    Also remember the reason why God gave the Prophet & other church leaders 2 counselers as well as Apostles, is because its not about whats supposedly canonised so to speak as some put it,but what the church leaders agree to. So in other words if one person does say something & the leaders as a whole know its wrong then its not considered the churches teachings. Remember what jesus said about if 2 or 3 people come together or pray in his name. In other words even if someone said something in the past & the church leaders are not agreed upon it & say "we don't agree with what that person said" ,then its not to be taught as though its what the church teaches.-Its as simple as that. Especially if its not "Thus Sayeth the Lord" like the power Joseph Smith had. Also Becareful of hearsay, or what someone else has claimed so & so had said like in some of the "history of the church volumes".

    Remember Paul rebuked Peter who was the leader at the time & had to be corrected.

    Also Ive read books from Church Members who have written about the mysteries etc & I & others have felt strongly that alot of what was written was true, but yet the leaders wont alow it to be taught or put into the church manuals for one reason or another even though there are mistakes known about in our manuals & bible foot notes etc that have been let through which will have to be corrected at some stage.

    Also be careful when speaking for everyone in the church,as there are antichrists in our church as well ,Pretenders making out there of god & for the church.

  • Leah

    Yeah this is an all out lie. My mother is a mormon and has been her whole life, I was raised in the mormon church and she told me herself that god had sex with Mary to make Jesus. Brigham Young taught it. Like most mormons, you are uninformed sadly.

    And this would make your god incestuous, since Mary is his spirit child. Gross.

  • James Horne

    Thanks for keeping them honest Leah!

    What strains credulity and rational thought even more is that Mormon Jesus is also Jehovah, the God of the Old/New Testament. God the Father is separate, so it begs the question if Jesus was his own father then?

  • Leah

    What a tangled web mormons weave…the early church leaders including Joseph Smith taught many unbiblical doctrines. The problem is the LDS church in its attempt to appear more 'Christian' has watered down these teachings, so a lot of younger or newer members are clueless about them. Like any other cult system, members are not taught the whole "truth" until they are worthy, which means they are far enough down the rabbit hole that they will believe anything they are told by that point. It doesnt matter what a church culture is like, or that you are comfortable there, what matters is that God's truth is taught and adhered to. With the maze of mormonisms false doctrines and conflicting prophets, it doesnt hold up. I was a member for 25 years and knew it didnt, I was just too scared of what I would find if I looked deeper. Praise God I did and He led me out and to His truth. I pray for my mom, my family, and all mormons that they would do the same.

  • Leah

    So Joshua have you finished that research yet?? Even though the research was done for you, so I don't know what you have to research…you have quotes from your prophets above…

    We are all anxiously awaiting to hear if you were finally worthy enough for church members to let you in on the secret that they DO believe God had physical sex with Mary. And then you can apologize for blaming "anti-mormons" for "propagating the myth" that was taught by your church leadership.

    • Joshua Steimle

      Leah, you sound a bit emotional about all this. Maybe we should give you some time to cool down so you can consider things more objectively :)

      But in all seriousness no, I haven't had the time yet. At the current rate it might take me a year or two. I don't even have the time to read the comments on here most of the time, let alone respond to everything. Some months I feel lucky to just be able to delete all the spam comments.

  • Leah

    Thanks Joshua, but I have had years of considering all of this objectively, which is why I am not a Mormon anymore.

    You don't need to deflect the conversation by stating I am emotional, I am completely rational in my statements. I have had lots of experience showing mormons the truth of their religion, and am still amazed at the denial and disbelief they have even when the evidence is right in front of them. You have read the quotes above, you commented after them, you are just putting off the inevitable. Open your heart and mind to the truth, your church leadership taught that doctrine whether you like it or not.

  • Joshua Steimle

    Well, if the research has already been done for me, then let's take just what has been posted here. I will admit my error in saying "No. Mormons do not believe any such thing." when it comes to the question at hand. Clearly there are some Mormons who may believe such a thing. And sure, let's say that some of the Presidents and Prophets of the LDS Church believed it. I haven't researched the quotes above (again, lack of time), but let's take them at their face value and assume they are authentic and not being taken out of context in any way.

    At best what you can say is that some of the President and Prophets of the Church have believed it, and their statements sound, at best, as though they are voicing their opinions, not stating doctrine. Doctrine is "Thus saith the Lord…" which none of them said. It seems to me they were making what they thought to be logical statements based on the information available to them. If any of the quotes represented a leader of the LDS Church saying "This is what God told me…" then I missed it. The closest to such a thing I have read is the statement by Pres. Benson:

    “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the most literal sense. The body in which He performed His mission in the flesh was sired by that some Holy Being we worship as God, our Eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost.” (Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, page 7)

    However, he is not saying that God had sex with Mary, he is saying that God is the father of Jesus Christ in a physical sense, unlike the way he is the father of all of us in a spiritual sense. He is not talking of "how" Mary got pregnant with Jesus, he talking about "what" Jesus Christ was.

    Now, was there sex between God and Mary or not? I don't know. Maybe there was and maybe there wasn't. Although certain scriptures and statements lead me to believe there wasn't, what if there was, so what? Is there a huge difference between being impregnated with the act, and being impregnated by a sperm cell being transferred Star Trek style into Mary's womb? In our sexually-overcharged society, perhaps there is a perceptual difference, but then we're talking about a matter of perception, and what seems "gross" to us is an inherently subjective matter. Have a chat with a farmer or rancher about his job and you'll quickly see how different people have different ideas of what constitutes grossness.

    What remains a fact despite all else is that there is no doctrine of the Church that says that God had sex with Mary. If you think there is, then we are arguing semantics, that is, the meaning of the word "doctrine". It is not part of the Church curriculum. You haven't been taught about it in General Conference. The first time I ever heard the idea mentioned was when I was 19. I never heard it mentioned again until I wrote this post 14 years or so later. If it were a core doctrine of the Church it would be in hundreds of places. But it's not, because it's not important to know one way or the other. Whether it was one way or another doesn't affect anyone's salvation. The only reason it is discussed at all amongst Mormons is as a matter of curiosity. The primary reason it is discussed more generally is because people want to use it as ammunition to make Mormons look bad.

    • cato

      An official LDS Church manual (Family Home Evening Manual, 1972) quoted from Joseph F. Smith under the heading “A Modern Prophet’s Answer” and included this picture on page 126:

      The same manual carried the above illustration showing the figure of aman, woman, and child. On page 126 LDS parents are told they should usethis to explain to their children “how Jesus was the only begotten Son of God.” Daddy plus Mommy equals you; Heavenly Father plus Mary equals Jesus.

      • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

        Do you believe Jesus is the Son of God? Do you believe he was born of Mary? Then you could give the same lesson to your kids.

        • jennyjustjen

          No, that is not the lesson I would give my son. The Jesus of the Bible was not conceived the same way my son was conceived. Secondly, Jesus is God – They are one. Jesus said in John 10:30 (NASB) “I and the Father are one.”
          Jesus has always existed- He is eternal- Mary is not. Mary found favor with God and was a great gal but she was merely an empty vessel willing to serve God.
          John 1:1-3 (NASB) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.
          John 1:14 (NASB) And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.
          Study God’s word alone and let it be “a lamp to your feet and a light to your path.”

          • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

            All words are subject to interpretation. When Jesus says he and the Father are one, he could be saying they are the same person, or that they are united in purpose. How can one know which one it is? Catholics, Methodists, Lutherans, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, pentacostals, evangelicals, Baptists, etc. all claim to believe in the Bible, and yet believe different things about God and the Bible, otherwise they’d all belong to the same church. There are so many different churches because each person interprets the Bible differently. How can one know which interpretation is correct?

    • jennyjustjen

      I just stumbled on to this website and after reading some your comment above I feel I must reply to a few things- in love of course :) You asked if it truly matters if God did or didn’t have sexual relations with Mary and is it a salvation issue. I believe it is a very important issue that not only speaks to the character of God but to His nature as well. First you have to ask yourself, is God Holy, righteous and without sin? I would hope you would say yes! God is not capable of sin- God is good and does not sin. If God had sexual relations with Mary then He has sinned and broken His own law. Incest is a sin. Sexual relations outside the bonds of marriage is a sin. We could take it further and say that if Mary was in a marital relationship with God when Jesus was conceived then it would be adultery or polygamy to then marry and have relations with Joseph. Any way you try to explain it puts God in a sinful, lustful light. This is not the God of the Bible. He is sinless. He isn’t a God that says “do as I say and not as I do”. Second is it a salvation issue, let’s see what God’s word says.
      2 Corinthians 11:4 (NASB) For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully.
      Galatians 1:8-9 (NASB) But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed!
      You are preaching a different Jesus, a different God and a different Gospel. You seemed very flippant on if one of your Presidents or “prophets” made an opinion that could be wrong- I suggest you start with Joseph Smith and go down the line with all your LDS “prophets” and give them the true test of a prophet found in God’s word, The Bible in the book of Deuteronomy 18:20-22. If they speak one thing wrong then you shall not fear them because they are speaking on their own behalf and not from God. After you research the quotes above- go back and put them to the test of a prophet like God tells us to do. I pray you will seriously take the time to read God’s word the Bible and come to know the One True God.

      • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

        How do you explain God commanding “thou shalt not kill” and then killing people?

  • Leah

    Brigham Young stated there was nothing he didn't say that wasn't scripture. Prophets are called prophets because they are suppose to be relaying messages from God. Why would your prophets in a public forum, speaking to other believers, just blurt out their opinions knowing it would be misconstrued as a teaching? You are grabbing at straws now.

    The importance IS: The Bible says Jesus was born of a virgin, by the Holy Spirit. Your prophet said He was not begot by the Holy Spirit. If Jesus was begot of the flesh, which THE FOUNDERS OF YOUR WHOLE RELIGION TAUGHT, then Mary was NOT a virgin and the scriptures are all lies and how can you believe any part of them? I'd say it's extremely important to know if the church you are attending is teaching God's word from the scriptures or making up their own teachings and assumptions as they go along. These were not Sunday school teachers stating their opinions as you have tried to make it sound, this was Brigham Young. Your prophet and successor to Joseph Smith. Your college is named after him.

    No one is trying to just "make Mormons look bad" Joshua. As I stated above, my own mother and most of my family is Mormon. I have just found that most of them really have no clue of their church history and doctrine, and do not know the foundation of which their faith is built on. It doesn't matter that today the LDS church tries to whitewash their beliefs to make them seem mainstream, the church was founded by men who deceived and taught heresy. My family and all Mormons deserve to know the truth. What you do with it is between you and God. I pray you will always seek the truth earnestly. Jesus said it would set you free. :)

    • Joshua Steimle

      "Brigham Young stated there was nothing he didn’t say that wasn’t scripture."

      Where's that statement?

      "Prophets are called prophets because they are suppose to be relaying messages from God. Why would your prophets in a public forum, speaking to other believers, just blurt out their opinions knowing it would be misconstrued as a teaching? You are grabbing at straws now."

      They do relay messages from God. But if you think that everything a prophet has said is scripture or doctrine, then you misunderstand the definition of what a prophet is. Prophets are entitled to their opinions like any other mortal man, and the LDS Church has never taught that prophets are infallible. They don't "just blurt out their opinions", but this does not mean they are accurate in everything they say. There are plenty of people throughout history who have taken great care with their words only to later find them to be wrong.

      "If Jesus was begot of the flesh, which THE FOUNDERS OF YOUR WHOLE RELIGION TAUGHT, then Mary was NOT a virgin and the scriptures are all lies and how can you believe any part of them?"

      If God's sperm were placed in Mary's womb without the sexual act, would she still be a virgin?

      "My family and all Mormons deserve to know the truth. "

      Since you cannot prove the Mormon faith to be false, this means you are acting on belief. We believe what we want to believe. In other words, you engage in saying things you believe make the Mormon faith look untrue, because you want the Mormon faith to be untrue, not because you have any proof of such. This, to me, is the same as "wanting to make the Church look bad."

      "So if God had sex with Mary according to your prophets, He broke His own law by committing incest since Mary is his daughter from heaven! And He committed adultery since she was betrothed to Joseph! I’d say this is directly related to your salvation. How can you trust God’s promise to save you if He breaks His own laws? Not very reliable. If you believe this doctrine, it changes God’s whole perfect nature."

      God also stated in the ten commandments "Thou shalt not kill." Later, he commands the Israelites to go into a city and kill every man, woman, and child. How would you explain this apparent contradiction? Could it be that there are other interpretations of Biblical scriptural than what appears to be obvious? Aside from that, is God bound by the same laws as men? Laws and rules are based on principles, and are not principles unto themselves. If God commands there to be no incest, why is he giving that law? What is his motivation? What is the principle behind it? Is it merely that God thinks incest is "gross"?

  • Leah

    …Not to mention that the law of Moses had been given before Jesus was born, and the law stated incest was wrong. So if God had sex with Mary according to your prophets, He broke His own law by committing incest since Mary is his daughter from heaven! And He committed adultery since she was betrothed to Joseph! I'd say this is directly related to your salvation. How can you trust God's promise to save you if He breaks His own laws? Not very reliable. If you believe this doctrine, it changes God's whole perfect nature.

    This is a very important doctrine to know the truth about, I hope you see that just from these few points. Please make the time to research what your beliefs are rooted in, from many sources, the main one being the Bible.

  • Leah

    "I have never yet preached a sermon and sent it out to the children of men, that they may not call Scripture." Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 13 Page 95

  • Joshua Steimle

    This statement from Brigham Young is taken out of context and does not mean what you think it means. Here's the explanation.

  • Leah

    The truth I was saying that Mormons deserve to know is what your church founders taught. There have been ample quotes with sources sited on this page showing the truth of what they taught. That is the truth, and it cannot be disputed. That is not my wishful thinking or interpretation. I only wanted you to acknowledge the principles and doctrine your church was founded on by the men it was founded by, because at the beginning of this you said anti-mormons had made up the myth. That was not true, it was taught by the church leaders.

    God told us through the Bible that you will know a true prophet if the things he says come true. With all of Joseph Smith's and Brigham Young's false prophecies (I can list them and give sources if needed) I know they were not true prophets. So yes, according to scripture, I can prove Mormonism to be false. Mormonism is based on their teachings. False teachings=false prophet=false church. Too easy.

    What is true is that Jesus the Son of God died for our sins and rose again and is my Savior. Yes that is based on faith, but also on the words of many prophets whose prophecies did come true. So my faith is based in truth and evidence. If I was listening to prophets who were false and putting more faith in them than in Jesus, there would be a problem. If a pastor at my church starting teaching unbiblical doctrine, I'd be out of there in a heartbeat. Jesus said to love the truth and seek it. And that was the whole point, to set the record straight on what the truth was on this issue. Don't you want the truth? You said the God/Mary sex doctrine was a myth made up by anti-mormons, and you have been given evidence that it was taught in your church by your founding prophets.

    Christians do not believe God is a man with flesh and bone like Mormons do either, so there is no need to argue about the sperm and what not. We have different terms and definitions of God, as well as many other things. We don't believe God has a wife in heaven making spirit babies either. Yes Mary was a virgin. It was a miracle. God did not need to have sex with her. Jesus' conception was supernatural, ensuring His deity and the right to be our Savior, it fulfills the prophecy of the scripture. (Isaiah 7:14) Joseph did not even consummate the marriage with Mary until after Jesus was born just so there would not be any misunderstandings of His origin. (Matthew 1:25) Her virginity cannot be denied, it is a part of the gospel. And your prophets denied it. No prophets in the Bible denied anything another prophet spoke, they were in harmony with one another even though they spanned 1500 years or so and did not even know each other.

    I do not "want" Mormonism to be wrong and me to be right. I believe the Bible to be God's word, and I believe in God and trust Jesus when He said his church would be preserved and the gates of hell would not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:18) God's word and truth is what should be lifted up, and if anything contradicts it or changes it, it is not from God.

  • Joshua Steimle

    When I said the idea that Mormon believe God had sex with Mary is a myth, perhaps I did not explain myself adequately. What I mean is that it is not doctrine of the Church. It is not taught as scripture. It is not in any current Church curriculum (and I doubt any past curriculum either). And if you performed a survey of Mormons, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find 1 Mormon in 100 who had even considered the idea, much less encountered the idea through the LDS Church. Are there a few Mormons who believe it? Sure, although I don't know any. Has it ever been taught in a class? Probably, although I've never heard it brought up in a class.

    And notwithstanding the quotes above, there is still no statement you have shown that explicitly says God had sex with Mary. That Jesus was the literal offspring of God, half God, half mortal, is what the above quotes say.

    If you want to engage in a discussion about the supposed "false prophecies" of any LDS prophets, you can do so here.

  • James Horne

    Thank you for the response Joshua. Your last comment is a much more fair reply to the topic, rather than boldly calling it an anti-Mormon myth. It does however raise an interesting problem what is and is not Mormon doctrine, which is a curious enigma by itself.

  • Leah

    “… I believe the Father came down from heaven, as the apostles said he did, and begat the Saviour of the world; for he is the ONLY-begotten of the Father, which could not be if the Father did not actually beget him in person…. I believe the Father came down in His tabernacle and begat Jesus Christ.”
    Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, volume 1, page 238

    “Christ was Begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”
    (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 547, 1966)

    Saying Jesus was begotten in the same way mortal men are begotten is pretty clear. Unless you know of another way mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers, than they were saying it was by sex. Also the quote by Benson claiming Jesus was not begotten by the Holy Ghost is a direct contradiction of the Bible, which says He was. (Matthew 1:20)

    I will have to agree with James. Mormons teach that the words of the prophet are from God and they are to be regarded as modern day revelation, they even believe the prophets over the Bible. But then they pick and choose which words from the prophets they want to believe. So which is it, do you listen to the prophets of your church, or do you not? It can't be both ways. Or do you just listen to the most recent ones, not the ones from the start of the church? If so, are you a true believer of the LDS faith, which is based on the words of the prophets? Enigma indeed.

    "I think you’d be hard-pressed to find 1 Mormon in 100 who had even considered the idea, much less encountered the idea through the LDS Church"

    My mother is in her 60's and has been a member her whole life, and she believes in the prophets with a militant faith. If only she would have the same faith in Jesus' words. She was taught this doctrine at church and believes it since it came from the original prophets of the church. So does my 2 aunts, uncle, and my grandparents who have since passed away. So not so hard pressed.

    What I do find is the younger members or newer converts do not have the same knowledge or have the same faith in the church founders as the older members, due to the watering down of these doctrines in the last few decades to become more mainstream to get more unsuspecting members. Have you seen the youtube videos? "I'm a mom and a painter. I'm also a Mormon!" What does this advertising ploy have to do with their beliefs?? You don't get to know their unbiblical beliefs until you much deeper in, once your life has been completely immersed in it. And sometimes not even then, here we have someone who operates a blog site answering questions about Mormons beliefs and other people are having to enlighten him on what his church has taught. That is why it is so difficult to leave it…

  • Mark

    More revisionist history. The church most certainly does teach that God had sex with Mary. I also studied with an elder from Salt Lake City. He was embarrassed when I asked this. But he couldn't deny it. He finally admitted it after refusing to answer at first. At least he was honest. You, the OP, unfortunately, refuse to acknowledge the truth.

    The question is: If you are embarrassed about your church's teachings to the point of being in denial about it, why don't you stay in it?

  • Mark

    Oh, and Joshua, the reason "1 in 100" may not know about it doesn't make it not a church teaching. All that proves is that the church leadership is smart enough to keep relatively quiet about such an embarrassing teaching. But they haven't repudiated it. Ultimately what is really important is who the '1' (in 100) are. If the 'apostles' are all counted in it, then it's the doctrine (pretty much by definition).

    If I were you though I wouldn't go around asking them about this (if you know what I mean).

    • Joshua Steimle

      I'm not saying no Church leader has ever taught it, although the statements I've read so far don't prove to me that they have. I'm not saying that God did or didn't have sex with Mary. What I'm saying is that it is not taught as doctrine. If you had asked me about it when I was a missionary I either would have denied it or would have claimed ignorance because I had never considered such a thing and had no clue, and I was generally ahead of most of my peers at that time. None of our scriptures speak of such a thing. None of the manuals used for teaching in the Church speak of such a thing. If a doctrine can be "taught" without anyone knowing about it then I guess we have different definitions of what it means to teach something.

      Personally, I don't care what the truth is. If God had sex with Mary, the so be it, and if not, then the discussion is moot. What no Christian denies is that God is the one who made Mary pregnant and does whether or not there was a technically sexual act really matter? Evidently to some people it does, but why?

  • Leah

    Again I will repeat since you are "not convinced" it was ever taught:

    “Christ was Begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”

    (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 547, 1966)

    "…. I believe the Father came down in His tabernacle (body) and begat Jesus Christ.”

    Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, volume 1, page 238

    These are your prophets. Just goes to show that some people will never believe anything they don't want to even if it is clear and in plain sight.

    Very simply the reason it is important to some (myself included) is the belief that God has an actual body of flesh and bones, who could "begat" with women is a false teaching, contradictory to the what the Bible says about God, and in turn leads people to believe in a false God and a false religion. It changes the very nature of God and who He is! The Bible says Mary was overcome and became with child from the Holy Spirit. The Bible also clearly states that God is spirit in many places, also that He is not a man! How do you guys explain that away?

    "God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth." John 4:24

    "God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent…" Num. 23:19

    There are many more verses stating God is spirit and not flesh and bone if you want them.

    The God of Mormonism is merely a man of flesh and bone exalted to godhood and is NOT the God of the Bible! That is the importance of saying God can have sex with Mary, the God of the Bible is not and was never a man, He was not created He is the Creator! Mormons worship a made up god from Joseph Smith. How do you not see the importance? Just because mormon leaders have realized how crazy the early churches' beliefs were that they now try to bury them and cover them up to get new converts does not change what your religion was built upon. They also don't advertise that men can become gods and can control their wives salvation either, but does that make it not a part of your doctrine? Hardly! As Mark stated above, the leaders know how crazy their beliefs are and have become wise enough to not blurt that out right from the start. They wait until you are down deep enough into the rabbit hole before you get to know the whole sordid truth. It's deception of the worst kind, playing with men's souls!

  • Leah

    Also, the Bible states Mary was a virgin. Do you not care if your church teaches contradictions to the Bible?? If Mary had sex with God then she was not a virgin, and who could believe anything the Bible tells us if that is a lie?? The Bible even states that Mary and Joseph didn't even consummate their marriage until after Jesus was born so that it could not be misconstrued as Mary not being a virgin! How much more plain could God have made it? And Mormons still find a way to twist it! It is extremely important to know these things Joshua and where to place your faith. Blind faith in anything anyone tells you is not what God intended, that is why He gave us His word to test things against, but that is why Mormons hold the Bible second to their own teachings and claim it has "not been translated correctly" now isn't it? Because they know they contradict it!

  • Joshua Steimle

    What do those quotes mean? Do they mean sex, or that a sperm from God was placed in Mary's uterus? That is, assuming those statements are factual and not merely the opinions of the authors. They've never been ratified as doctrine of the Church as far as I know. One thing a lot of people get hung up on is that Mormons don't consider every single thing a leader of the Church says to be doctrine or the teaching of the Church. In other words, maybe Brigham and McConkie were indeed saying that God had sex with Mary, but maybe they were wrong. This isn't a problem for me. In fact, Brigham even leaves room himself for being wrong, since he says "…I believe" rather than "Thus saith the Lord…". If Brigham or McConkie had said something along the lines that God appeared to them, or they saw a vision, and that they saw that God performed a sexual act with Mary, then that would be something different, perhaps.

    As for whether God had a body of flesh and bone, the Bible is open to interpretation. Yes, God is a Spirit, Mormons agree with that statement. So are you and I. We are all spirits inhabiting physical bodies. Our bodies are not who we are, our spirits are who we are.

    Likewise, God is not a man, that is, he is not mortal, subject to temptation, imperfect, etc. He is not man like you and me in the sense that he would lie or have need to repent. Again, Mormons agree with that scripture.

    All scripture is open to interpretation. You can share every Bible scripture you want, and you will interpret it one way, and I will interpret it in a different way. There is no way to prove that one interpretation is correct and the other incorrect without some source of information external to the Bible itself. Just as you say that the God of Mormonism is not the God of the Bible, Mormons would say the God of traditional Christianity is not the God of the Bible, or at least that traditional Christianity misunderstands a number of things about God, since they rely solely on the Bible and the concepts of men, whereas Mormons rely on the Bible, additional scripture, and ongoing revelation from God.

    "The Bible even states that Mary and Joseph didn’t even consummate their marriage until after Jesus was born so that it could not be misconstrued as Mary not being a virgin!"

    Can you give me your reference(s) for this?

  • Leah

    Matthew 1:24-25 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And KNEW HER NOT till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus. KJV (emphasis mine)

    My mom had to ask me to give her the verse as well, since Mormons rarely study their Bible's. 50+ years as a mormon and she had never heard that verse either! Sad. Please for your own sake dust off your Bible and read it!

    Those words are not open to interpretation. "God is not a man" is a definitive statement, and it is stated in other scripture as well. Some things are NOT open to interpretation! Be careful not to twist God's word to fit your beliefs. Your beliefs should always fit God's word! The difference with Christians is we take God at his word and we don't pick apart the verses to mold them into what we want them to mean according to a "religion". Our faith is in Jesus Christ alone, not a church or religion. It doesn't matter what church we attend or how often, faith in Christ saves you. Mormons rely on the teachings of Joseph Smith, and your "revelation from God" comes from your prophets, whom you just pick and choose which of their teachings to hold true or not.

    Leaving all scripture open to interpretation leads you down a slippery slope…who's interpretation is correct? My mormon family believes that God was once a man and has flesh and bone and had sex with Mary based on teachings from the Mormon church, whether you like it or not. Who's interpretation is correct, yours or theirs?

    If Mormons believe traditional Christianity is so wrong, then why are they doing everything they can to hide and change their doctrinal beliefs to sound more and more like it? So much so that most of their younger followers don't have a clue what was actually taught, and in fact deny it?

    Hmmm…

  • Joshua Steimle

    "Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And KNEW HER NOT till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus."

    This is the scripture I assumed you were referring to, except that I don't see anything here that tells us why Joseph knew her not. Is there somewhere else in the Bible that tells us the reason why not?

    "Those words are not open to interpretation. “God is not a man” is a definitive statement, and it is stated in other scripture as well. Some things are NOT open to interpretation! "

    If the Bible is not open to interpretation, then it's not open to being translated, or even read at all, since one cannot read the Bible or anything else without interpreting it according to their own biases. Every translator of the Bible had to interpret the Bible as they tried to choose words that they thought most accurately conveyed the meaning from one language to another. Whenever you read the Bible you interpret what it is saying, otherwise you would not understand what you are reading. When you read "God is not a man" and you say "This means God doesn't have a body" you are interpreting the scripture. It could mean what you say, but it also could mean something else. How does one know what it means? You can read other scriptures and gather evidence that way, or you can turn to sources outside of scripture. The former is good to do, but it can only bring you so far, because the Bible is not comprehensive or completely self-explanatory. Ultimately one must have a source of information external to the Bible in order to get a correct interpretation.

    Whose interpretation is correct? God's. Mormons claim to have direct communication with God on a one-to-one basis, as well as through every other channel of authority up to and including prophets and apostles, just as in the early Church that Christ established. Thus our interpretation is not of man, as is that of traditional Christianity, but of God. Traditional Christianity has much of the truth, but is lacking other crucial parts.

  • Mark

    >Personally, I don’t care what the truth is.

    By far the most accurate and honest thing you've said in this thread.

    And a perfect summary of the approach and attitude of every cult member I've ever talked to. For the lucky ones, they start caring about the truth and eventually it sets them free.

    I hope that one day this happens for you.

    • Joshua Steimle

      Mark, please, if you have something to contribute to the discussion then by all means say it, but taking something I said out of context doesn't do anyone any good.

  • Leah

    It was called a "VIRGIN BIRTH". If Mary and Joseph had sex before Jesus was born, he would not have been "born of a virgin". Surely you have read that part of the Bible, or should I give you the verses claiming Jesus was born of a virgin? There was old testament prophecy stating the Messiah would "be born of a virgin". Jesus fulfilled that prophecy, but if she was not a virgin, than Jesus was not the messiah. Again, read your Bible!

    How do presume that Christians only have the interpretation of "men"? Are your prophets and apostles not men? What of the numerous prophets of the Bible, their word is not as good as Joseph Smith's or your "modern day revelators"? And there is absolutely no evidence, historical or archaeological, to back up claims that the early apostles taught and believed in any tenets of Mormonism. Jewish records and documents prove this false. Your temple's have nothing to do with the temple of God, nor do the rituals. Tell a Jew that they are wrong, and that YOUR temples and rituals are correct and they would laugh at you! Or do the Jews somehow have it all wrong too, and somebody tampered with all of their historical and religious documents including the Torah, and sites of temples in Israel showing the God-given design of the temple…all as a conspiracy against the Mormons! Please. Mormonism is what has some of the truth, but is lacking crucial parts. There is no factual basis for believing that Mormonism was the original "Christianity" and all of it was tampered with and erased from history. Now THAT takes faith!

    We have the Bible, God's holy and perfect word, written through prophets by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. We are to read and study God's word ourselves, we do not just blindly listen to what men tell us. If any church authority or pastor was to preach something other than what is in the Bible, I would not listen to him. Period. How is that any different than what you are claiming mormons have? I talk to God personally myself on a daily basis as well…it's called prayer and all believers have the honor of speaking to God through the holy name of Jesus. I have a personal relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But because I am no longer a member of a certain established religion and do not attend their church or temple services I am not worthy? Now who is it again who believes in the traditions of men??

    I am 100% sure of my salvation and my eternal destination, and it has nothing to do with my own merits. I deserve to go to hell just like you and everyone else on this planet for breaking God's law. It is only through Christ's sacrifice and resurrection am I able to be saved. Not by some temple ritual and not by being a member of a church. True Christians give ALL the glory to Jesus, it has nothing to do with us! God in His mercy and grace has saved us, praise be to Him. You labor in vain Joshua. You will not become a god, for there is only one God. Polytheism is paganism and is nothing new, God warned us against it in the Bible. I say again please read it!

    In regards to your comments "If you had asked me about it when I was a missionary I either would have denied it or would have claimed ignorance because I had never considered such a thing and had no clue, and I was generally ahead of most of my peers at that time" Pride comes before a fall, and will send many away from salvation. Do not be so wrapped up in something just because you are afraid to admit you could have been wrong. Your soul depends on it.

  • Leah

    I understand realizing you have placed your faith in the wrong thing is a tough pill to swallow, I had a hard time when I realized mormonism was false and I found the truth just 3 years ago. It took me some time to humble myself and accept God's truth. I didn't want to believe my whole family and everyone I knew could be wrong! But you have to humble yourself and put pride aside, and realize even intelligent, sincere people can be wrong. The importance is that you find and have the truth, everything else doesn't matter…because a lie won't save you.

  • Joshua Steimle

    So what is your take on this article? – Mary was probably not a virgin in the modern sense of the word

    Could it be that the word "virgin" referred to a young female, rather than a female who had never had sexual relations?

    "How do you presume that Christians only have the interpretation of “men”? Are your prophets and apostles not men?"

    Because no Christian church I know of claims to have modern-day prophets and apostles. Our prophets and apostles are indeed men, but they are men who speak to God and receive his word, just as Moses, Peter, or Paul did in their day. They are God's authorized representatives. Does any other Christian religion even make the claim of having modern-day versions of Peter, James, and John?

    "What of the numerous prophets of the Bible, their word is not as good as Joseph Smith’s or your “modern day revelators”?"

    Sure they are, but people can't agree on what the words of the Bible mean. If they did, then there would only be one Christian church instead of however many there are. The Bible does not adequately explain itself to prevent misunderstandings. Also, the Bible does not teach everything God wants us to know. The Bible is merely a collection of some of the writings of ancient prophets and apostles from a limited geography. The Bible itself refers to teachings and writings of prophets and apostles that are not contained in the book. The Bible is great, but if there is more to know, then I want to know it. Mormons don't put a limit on God by saying he couldn't have created more scripture, or that he doesn't continue creating more today. If the Bible were intended to be God's only word to man, then there is a great flaw in the book for it doesn't say that anywhere (I'm happy to rehash the Revelation 22:19 argument if need be. Short answer–"this book" is not talking about the Bible, only about the book of Revelation, as evidenced by the fact that the Bible didn't exist in its compiled form when the book of Revelation was written).

    "And there is absolutely no evidence, historical or archaeological, to back up claims that the early apostles taught and believed in any tenets of Mormonism."

    It all depends on how you interpret the words of the Bible.

    "Your temple’s have nothing to do with the temple of God, nor do the rituals."

    The temples of ancient Israel were different in form and function than the temples of today. Why? I'm not sure, but I would guess it has something to do with the Israelites not having had the higher priesthood and being limited to the ordinances and rituals of the lesser priesthood.

    "There is no factual basis for believing that Mormonism was the original “Christianity” and all of it was tampered with and erased from history. Now THAT takes faith!"

    There is little to no factual basis for much of what is contained in the Bible. There is no factual basis for Adam and Eve, Noah's ark, the burning bush, the Israelites in Egypt, or Christ himself. In fact, there is no factual evidence for the existence of God (a discussion I am currently having with someone else in a different place on this website). There is certainly no factual evidence for the resurrection nor the forgiveness of sins, the two most important points of the Bible. Those of us who believe in the Bible are all in the same boat in that believing in Christ requires faith.

    "If any church authority or pastor was to preach something other than what is in the Bible, I would not listen to him. Period."

    When you listen to someone preach the Bible, how do you know his interpretation is correct? How do you know he doesn't misunderstand what is being said?

    "How is that any different than what you are claiming mormons have?"

    Pastors and preachers of other faiths, as well as wise men and women of all faiths and beliefs, may be inspired by God. I believe that Buddha, Mohammed, Martin Luther, John Calvin, and many other men were inspired of God. But they were not authorized servants of God. They did not hold the Priesthood as did the prophets and apostles of the Bible. They did not talk directly to God, nor God directly to them, as was the case with Abraham, Isaac, and Moses. Our prophets and apostles do have the authority of God. They do speak directly to God, and God to them. There is no one else in the world right now authorized by God to say "Thus saith the Lord…" other than the prophet of the LDS Church.

    "I talk to God personally myself on a daily basis as well…it’s called prayer and all believers have the honor of speaking to God through the holy name of Jesus. I have a personal relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But because I am no longer a member of a certain established religion and do not attend their church or temple services I am not worthy? Now who is it again who believes in the traditions of men??"

    That's great, and I mean that sincerely. I believe you do have a personal relationship with Christ, just as you say. I believe that if you do what you sincerely believe and feel is right throughout your life that you will be saved. But "saved" to what kind of life after this one? When we talk of worthiness we have to ask "worthy of what?" Mormons are striving to become like God, to become gods. We believe this is the purpose of our existence. If that's not your goal, then you don't have to worry about doing the things to become worthy of such an objective.

    "It is only through Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection am I able to be saved."

    We Mormons agree.

    "You will not become a god, for there is only one God. Polytheism is paganism and is nothing new, God warned us against it in the Bible."

    Mormonism is not polytheistic. Polytheism is the belief in and worship of many gods. Mormons only believe in one God. We worship only one God, just as the Bible commands.

    "But you have to humble yourself and put pride aside, and realize even intelligent, sincere people can be wrong. The importance is that you find and have the truth, everything else doesn’t matter…because a lie won’t save you."

    What if I've already done this, and as a result have discovered that the LDS Church is the true church of Christ?

    Leah, you have many misunderstandings about the LDS Church and its doctrine. It is clear the Mormon religion you have in your head is not the reality of what it is. I am not sure if something happened that hurt your feelings, or if you were not taught accurately what the Church is about. I hope someday you can discover the LDS Church anew and see it through different eyes. It has brought me the greatest joy and peace in my life, and makes my life exciting each and every day. I'm happy to keep responding to your questions and challenges in the hopes that by clarifying what Mormons really believe something might sink in and make a difference someday.

  • Leah

    I thank you Joshua for your responses, of course I have the same objective in mind for you but in the opposite direction :)

    But I need you to clarify one thing…in almost the same breath you said you are working to become a god but that you are not polytheistic. You do believe in more than one god, and you are striving to be one of them…yet then say you believe in only one god? Huh? I'm a bit confused by this. By your own definition polytheism is the belief in more than one god…so you think if you don't actually worship all of them it makes you monotheistic? And you believe Jesus and God are two separate gods, and you worship them both… You can't have it both ways.

    As for the LDS church having the only person authorized to speak to God, says who? The LDS church? Your prophets and apostles were voted in and agreed upon by councils of men. Are you as presumptuous to think that men decide who God will speak to? That you control Him? Moses and the other biblical prophets were chosen by God, usually unexpectedly, for Him to speak to and use for His purposes…not the other way around. Their prophecies then came true proving them to be true prophets.

    There is also loads of historical records, archaeological finds, and geographical locations that prove the Bible's history as accurate…the miracles are the only things that can't actually be proven, which is where faith comes in. I have books, maps, annals, and hours of video documentaries showcasing archaeological proofs for the Bible's historical claims.

    No one hurt my feelings or anything like that, I simply never felt Mormonism had all the answers…certain things never added up, but I continued to go like a good mormon does as not to upset my mother. It was only 3 years ago I started reading and digging and researching the religion myself and found the evidence that it was a false religion. It didn't hold up to the Bible. I have found an amazing peace and joy in Jesus Christ that I never found within the walls of the LDS church, so I will never go back. I do have missionaries that come by from time to time with the same hope though, and I enjoy speaking to them and sharing the truth with them.

    • Joshua Steimle

      Well, wikipedia says this about polytheism – "Polytheism is the belief of multiple deities also usually assembled into a pantheon of gods and goddesses, along with their own mythologies and rituals." That is talking about worship in the sense of the Greeks and Romans, which is definitely the worship of the LDS Church.

      The dictionary says "The belief in or worship of more than one god." While Mormons believe there are multiple gods, we don't "believe in" multiple gods, that is, we don't worship more than one god. We worship as Paul did, as he says:

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

      1 Corinthians 8:5-6

      If Mormons are polytheists, so are all Christians who believe in the doctrine of the Trinity. Mormons believe God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are three distinct individuals who function as one God, completely united in purpose. Traditional Christians believe they are one God who is three persons in one being. Jews and Muslims would consider no one of Christian faith to be monotheists.

      "As for the LDS church having the only person authorized to speak to God, says who?"

      God does. He told me so.

      "Are you as presumptuous to think that men decide who God will speak to? That you control Him?"

      Nope.

      "Moses and the other biblical prophets were chosen by God, usually unexpectedly, for Him to speak to and use for His purposes…not the other way around."

      This is how Joseph Smith was chosen. Other prophets of this dispensation have been chosen in what could be seen as a more orderly way, perhaps, but always by God.

      "Their prophecies then came true proving them to be true prophets."

      You may be interested in this page on Joseph Smith's fulfilled prophecies.

      "There is also loads of historical records, archaeological finds, and geographical locations that prove the Bible’s history as accurate…the miracles are the only things that can’t actually be proven, which is where faith comes in. I have books, maps, annals, and hours of video documentaries showcasing archaeological proofs for the Bible’s historical claims."

      I've read works of historical fiction that are also supported by loads of the same type of evidence, the only parts missing being that the people in those works of fiction never existed, or they are conglomerates of the experiences of many people. There are many people in the world today who claim the Bible to be nothing more than mythology, like that of the Greeks (after all, there is a lot of archeology that supports the stories of the Greek gods as well). This is why our knowledge that the Bible is true cannot be based upon such things. Ultimately, physical evidence cannot prove to us that Christ lived, that he atoned for our sins, or that he died and was resurrected. This is the most important message of the Bible, and if we are to be able to exercise faith in these events we must have a more sure knowledge than can be provided by archeology or history–we must have knowledge given to us directly from God. Otherwise the same archeology and physical evidence we have used to support our testimonies will be turned around and used against us, and we will have nothing else to stand on.

      "I have found an amazing peace and joy in Jesus Christ that I never found within the walls of the LDS church…"

      Now this is an interesting statement, and one which I've heard from many other people who have left the Church. I wonder if it's a matter of mismatch. For example, I do triathlons. Training for and participating in these events is not comfortable. I'm often in pain. Training often conflicts with my schedule. It would be much easier to quit. I would have more time, I wouldn't have the stress, I could relax more, I would be "at peace" in a way I can't be while training. But I would be giving up what I consider to be a greater objective that makes all that stress, anxiety, and pain worth it. That's how I feel, but what about someone who gets into triathlon and really doesn't like it, and doesn't care about the larger objective? They would quit and say "Hey, I feel great! I have all this time, I'm not in pain, I don't have that stress in my life anymore, I can relax, what's not to like?" If they're not into triathlon, it's just going to be a pain for them all around, because they don't see the ultimate goal as being worth it.

      Perhaps for some people leaving the Mormon faith is similar. If you don't see or understand the ultimate goal, or don't believe in it, or don't like it, then being a Mormon is just a lot of useless toil and stress and rules and commitments, and for what? If you're not feeling it, then you're just not feeling it, and living as a Mormon isn't going to give you peace because your desires, beliefs, and actions aren't aligned with what it means to be a Mormon. You're just going to be stressed, and so when you leave, you find a place that fits your desires better, and you're at peace.

      Another analogy might be that of having kids. If someone doesn't want to have kids, but they're hanging around people who do, and who think everyone should have kids, it's going to be stressful and cause anxiety. That person is going to feel a lot more comfortable and at peace hanging out with people who also don't want to have kids.

      Of course when it comes to God's plans things are a bit different, or the stakes are higher. But as a Mormon I don't believe it's either you have kids (heaven) or you don't (hell). We believe in multiple levels of salvation, in a sense. If you believe going to heaven means being an angel and serving God, then you don't need Mormonism. Mormonism is focused on attaining exaltation, not just salvation. It's salvation plus more, although the plan of salvation was created for God's children to attain exaltation, and nothing less. But if you don't want to believe that we are children of God and can become like God, then no one is going to force you along that path, and if that's not what you want you have the right to choose. Just because you don't choose exaltation doesn't mean you go to hell, you may still go to heaven, but just not live the kind of life God lives.

  • Kyle

    Leah,

    Your concerns seem too elementary for someone who was a converted member of the faith. I do not doubt your status as a former member—however I do question if you were truly converted. The reason is that your questions are not new or novel and most members have them at some point (John Chapter 6 is a great illustration of this point). The difference is those members that are truly converted dig really hard to find answers and actually end up with even stronger faith in the end. For example:

    Your concern, “Your prophets and apostles were voted in and agreed upon by councils of men. Are you as presumptuous to think that men decide who God will speak to?” Most Mormons are familiar with the place in first book of Acts in the Bible where the vary practice you criticized Mormons for is performed by the Apostles as they looked for one to replace Judas.

    Your question about poly theistic gods and our relationship with Jesus Christ can be explained in the following link (it’s a great talk but might be a bit much for you). http://speeches.byu.edu/reader/reader.php?id=6843 The Trinity is possibly even more complicated to explain when you consider Christ’s prayers in the New Testament shortly before and during the atonement.

    To answer your questions about how men of God could make mistakes—reread the Old and New Testament looking for this and you will find much of it contains teaching by correction. A few obvious examples are Judas, King David, and Peter denying Christ.

    One example in particular that applies to this conversation is in Luke chapter 9 verses 49-50. John reports of his forbidding of a man of “casting out devils in thy name”. The man that John had forbid was not a “real” follower of Jesus Christ according to John (a view others frequently have of Mormons). Christ gives a response that should frame Christian thoughts about others that also follow Christ in a different church.

    “And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us. And Jesus said unto him, forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.” (Luke 9:49-50)

    Essentially Christ corrects John’s incorrect actions and tells him not to condemn those that “claim” to be followers of Jesus Christ.

    The Jesus Christ of the New Testament does not seem like the type that would encourage efforts to contest the membership of Mormons as followers of Christ. Instead he seems like the type that would spend his time teaching non-believers about the Savior and the miracle of the atonement.

    If you want answers you need to dig a bit harder than you have.

  • Leah

    Kyle-perhaps you have not read my previous posts…I was a member for the first 30 years of my life. I come from a long line of mormons, going back generations and had the beliefs reinforced to me from grandparents, mother, extended family…so to reduce my concerns as "elementary" or that I did not dig deep enough only makes you sound as if you think you are morally and religiously superior to me, an attitude I encounter often from Mormons. Questioning others' faith and sincerity actually turns many away from the church, and you might want to reconsider your approach. With thousands of people having left the Mormon church with the same concerns, I hardly think we all just didn't dig deep enough.

    Joshua-I would have to agree with your analogies more so if any. I think you're right about the mismatch being a factor, but it goes further than just the people being a mismatch. While searching for answers more than just feelings come into play, I studied God's word and many things the mormon church taught I simply could not find a basis for other than "Joseph Smith said so." Such as the God having sex with Mary example. I cannot in good conscience believe the Bible to mean anything other than a virgin birth when it says "virgin birth." That is what made it a miracle and special. Otherwise, Jesus' conception and birth was nothing special at all. So yes, I do have faith in all the miracles and in Jesus, I was merely stating that historical facts back up the Bible as well. It is not a faith just based in any old thing. Such as when atheists poke fun at believers and say they believe in the flying spaghetti monster or what have you…my faith has some factual basis behind it when the historical details and records back up its claims is the point I was trying to make. Also the writings of Josephus, a non believing Jew, support the fact that Jesus was a real person who walked this earth. Those facts help my faith become stronger even though they do not prove the miracles, that is where faith comes in.

    As for all of the exaltation business, there is no where in the Bible that could be construed as men getting their own planets to rule, and others who don't do as good will be tending to their spirit children, only Mormons getting to be with God, and all the stuff mormons believe about the afterlife…I can't fit that into the Bible or Jesus' teachings with any evidence whatsoever. If you have Bible verses supporting those beliefs, please share. I think it also lends to the holier than thou attitude a lot of Mormons portray, because they believe they will be better than others in the afterlife. I choose to give all the glory to Jesus, since we ALL fall short of the glory of God. I don't focus on trying to get my own, I don't want it or need it. I want God to be glorified. Anyways in Mormonism, as a woman, I could only be called to it by my husband and then I'd still be second to him. I thank God this is not truly His plan for us and feel sorry for the mormon women who think their husband's control their destiny and that they will never be equal in God's eyes.

    There were many, many evidences I found to leave the church…but the main deal breaker, or the last piece of evidence that sealed my decision to leave was the translation of the Egyptologists of the drawing in the Pearl of Great Price. No one had the ability to translate it in JS's day, so he had free reign to say whatever he wanted about the drawing. Now with that ability, in recent years it has been translated as being an ancient Egyptian burial rite. Some mormons explain it away to mean JS was just "inspired" by God to say that it was Abraham, it is not a "literal translation." I cannot in good conscience believe that either. I have not just read what you would call "anti-mormon" literature either…I searched mormon sources as well and it just doesn't hold up against the evidence. Again, while I do have faith, some facts and reasoning have to come into play before I will place my faith in something.

    I also do not believe God only speaks to Mormons. I have nothing to back that up, it's just my belief. I believe God can speak to whomever He chooses, and the amazing things He does through people all over the world (especially the Jews, His chosen people) leads me to believe otherwise. You believe it because JS said God gave him the priesthood so you think Mormons have the only authority, and that is the only reason you have. You could not prove it without the "JS said so" argument, so no need for us to discuss that further.

    By the way, I know it was just an analogy, but the kids thing was definitely not a factor in my leaving the church; I have 5 . God commanded us to be fruitful and multiply! :)

  • Leah

    Oh and about JS's fulfilled prophecies…even a broken clock is right two times a day. I am more concerned with his prophecies that did NOT come true. Even psychics and mediums today can get some details correct about future events, but the Bible tells us that if any man speaks prophecy and it does not come true, then he is not from God. It says if any prophecy he speaks does not come true, not some of them, or most of them…any of them. That is the test.

    First prophecy about the Civil War from JS listed on that link you gave:
    1 Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that will shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina, which will eventually terminate in the death and misery of many souls;
    2 And the time will come that war will be poured out upon ALL NATIONS, beginning at this place. (emphasis mine)

    Ummm…I don't think all nations were involved in the Civil War. False. That is all I had time to go through so far, but if there is such obvious error right in the first one I don't think it's going to get any better.

  • Joshua Steimle

    "Otherwise, Jesus’ conception and birth was nothing special at all."

    If God came down and had sex with Mary that's "nothing special at all"? I can understand it if someone thinks it's repulsive or strange, but I would hardly call it ordinary since it never happened before or since.

    "It is not a faith just based in any old thing."

    My faith is based on God speaking to me and telling me the LDS Church is his one true church. Is that "any old thing"?

    "my faith has some factual basis behind it when the historical details and records back up its claims is the point I was trying to make"

    There are many PhDs and professional historians who have done extensive research and believe there is no evidence that the core events of the Bible ever occurred any more than Hercules slaying the hydra. There are no facts that prove the Bible to be true. There is circumstantial evidence that correlates with the writings of the Bible and lend credence to them, but there is such evidence for the Book of Mormon as well and it is growing all the time. There are logical explanations for why there is more circumstantial evidence for the Bible than the Book of Mormon, a large part of it dealing with the fact that it's not that there necessarily is more evidence for the Bible, but merely that more evidence has been discovered at this point in time. 100 years from now the evidence for the Book of Mormon may catch up. After all, archeological work in that part of the world is relatively new. We have probably not completed even 1% of the work there is to be done, and even in 100 years we might only be 5-10% of the way complete.

    "As for all of the exaltation business, there is no where in the Bible that could be construed as men getting their own planets to rule…"

    Why do you limit God to what is in the Bible? Why do you say that God couldn't have spoken to other prophets outside of the Bible? Why do you limit God by saying he couldn't call prophets today just like he did anciently?

    "I want God to be glorified."

    God can only increase in glory by having children who grow to become like him. Otherwise he is damned, that is, stopped in his progress. Why limit God by saying he can't progress? When you progress, it adds to his glory. Why limit God by refusing to live up to the potential he has given you and being satisfied with less than what you could be?

    "Anyways in Mormonism, as a woman, I could only be called to it by my husband and then I’d still be second to him. I thank God this is not truly His plan for us and feel sorry for the mormon women who think their husband’s control their destiny and that they will never be equal in God’s eyes."

    This statement shows that you do not understand LDS doctrine. You may disagree, but if you believe this is the doctrine of the LDS Church you are simply mistaken. That's not to say there aren't individuals in the Church who believe and act this way, but they are in the wrong as leaders of the Church have repeatedly taught.

    "the main deal breaker, or the last piece of evidence that sealed my decision to leave was the translation of the Egyptologists of the drawing in the Pearl of Great Price"

    How much research did you really do on this? Did you read all of Nibley's books? Did you read all the FARMS articles on the matter? Or did you just read a few anti-Mormon articles, one or two pro articles, and decide the case was closed? What about all the arguments in favor of the authenticity of the Book of Abraham? I've been doing research on this matter for years, and I have found no convincing evidence against the Book of Abraham, and quite a bit of evidence in favor of it. Most of what I have found against it depends on illogical assumptions, misunderstandings, and straw man arguments.

    There are many things contained in the book that match up with ancient Jewish writings such that there is no way an uneducated 19th century farm boy could have made them up, because they were things not even the experts of his time knew about. Here is a good summary of the cases for and against the veracity of the Book of Abraham.

    "I also do not believe God only speaks to Mormons."

    Nor do I. I believe God "spoke" to Mohammed. I believe God "speaks" to other world leaders in our day. I believe God "speaks" to all sorts of individuals great and small today. That is, he communicates with them in one way or another, sometimes more explicitly, sometimes more subtly. But no one today has the authority to declare the word of God for the entire world except the prophets of God. You can receive revelation for yourself, whether or not you are a Mormon. You can receive revelation for your family. But you do not have the authority to go on TV and say "God told me to call you all to repentance, and here is what he told me to tell you to do…" You don't have that authority. Only his prophets and apostles do. God is a God of order, and he has established his Church with a specific order and organization just as he did in Biblical times.

    "You believe it because JS said God gave him the priesthood so you think Mormons have the only authority, and that is the only reason you have. You could not prove it without the “JS said so” argument, so no need for us to discuss that further. "

    No, I believe it because God himself told me that this is the case.

    "Oh and about JS’s fulfilled prophecies…even a broken clock is right two times a day. "

    The same argument could be used against the prophets of the Bible.

    "the Bible tells us that if any man speaks prophecy and it does not come true, then he is not from God. It says if any prophecy he speaks does not come true, not some of them, or most of them…any of them. That is the test."

    I guess that means that Jonah was not a prophet?

    4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.

    5 So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

    6 For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.

    7 And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water:

    8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.

    9 Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?

    10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.

    Jonah 3:4-10

    "I don’t think all nations were involved in the Civil War. "

    That's not what the prophecy said. Have we seen war poured out upon all nations in the days since the Civil War? Yeah, pretty much. If there is a nation that hasn't been affected by war and conflict since then I'm not sure what it is, and we've got more wars still to go. That prophecy is still in the process of being fulfilled.

  • Leah

    That IS what the prophecy states, you are completely twisting his prophecy so that it appears to be speaking of other wars.

    1 Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that WILL SHORTLY COME TO PASS, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina, which will eventually terminate in the death and misery of many souls;
    2 And the time will come THAT WAR WILL BE POURED OUT UPON ALL THE NATIONS, beginning at THIS PLACE.
    3 For behold, the Southern States shall be divided against the Northern States, and the Southern States will call on other nations, even the nation of Great Britain, as it is called, and they shall also call upon other nations, in order to defend themselves against other nations; and then war shall be poured out upon all nations. "

    JS then continues in verse 3 that he speaking about the Civil War. It says "shortly come to pass", not span years and years until the end of time. It says war will be poured out once the North and South call on other nations and is clearly still speaking of the same event! Come on Joshua, really! But even if you did want to interpret it to mean that, it still was not JS's prophecy! Jesus already told us that would happen, "wars and rumors of wars" and all the end time prophecy about wars in Revelation. JS cannot just repackage what has been prophesied in the Bible and call it his own, like it's some new revelation! Open your eyes!

    Also in verse 4 it states "And it shall come to pass, after many days, slaves shall rise up against their masters, who shall be marshaled and disciplined for war."

    Now this never happened either. There was no uprising of slaves against their masters. It is not using metaphors or figures of speech, so I take it to literally mean what it says. I am sure you will interpret it to mean some slaves joined the war effort and fought battles, but that is not what the prophecy says and it would require you to stretch the words to fit what you want it to.

    As for Jonah, he did not lie or speak presumptuously. God did warn that would happen and told Jonah to tell the people. Since the people heeded the warning and turned back to God and begged forgiveness, He had mercy on them and did not destroy them. Not the same thing at all, you are grabbing at straws now.

    God does not progress nor does He need to. This again shows our difference in terms and definitions of who God is. According to the Bible God does not change, He is and always has been God from eternity. He was never a man, He is holy and perfect and does not progress, how does something PERFECT progress? He is not a created being in need of progression. He is from everlasting to everlasting, He is the one and only God.

    As for God telling you directly Himself, that is meant to stop all argument since that cannot be disproved or proved. Are you proclaiming to be a prophet then? If God is actually speaking to you directly himself, shouldn't you be leading the LDS church or writing the Book of Mormon Part 2 or something?

  • Joshua Steimle

    A hundred or two hundred years is "shortly" for God. We're talking about a guy for whom a hundred years might as well be a day.

    "But even if you did want to interpret it to mean that, it still was not JS’s prophecy! Jesus already told us that would happen, “wars and rumors of wars” and all the end time prophecy about wars in Revelation."

    But Joseph Smith's prophecy about the Civil War was pretty specific, and the prophecy about wars spreading to all nations "shortly" was fairly specific too, as prophecies go. It might be easy in hindsight to say "Oh, anyone could have said that within the next 100 years there would be massive wars all over the earth" but from Joseph Smith's perspective there was no reason to believe this. The biggest thing in his history was the Revolutionary War, which was miniscule compared to the Civil War or the World Wars of the early 20th century.

    Just as with the Bible, we can see from this brief exchange that everything is open to interpretation, and people believe what they want to believe. I think you're twisting things to fit your point of view, you think I'm twisting things to fit my point of view. Is there any chance we'll convince each other of anything? Probably not, because I want to believe what I believe, and you want to believe what you believe, and we're going to latch onto those things that support our point of view, discount those things that don't support our point of view, and where there is ambiguity we'll interpret things to support our point of view.

    But I'm not really trying to convince you of anything, per se. My purpose with this blog is merely to help people keep an open mind by stating that nobody can prove the LDS Church to be false. If they can't prove it to be false, there must logically exist the possibility that it's true, and hopefully that's enough to keep people looking into it until they can discover the truth for themselves. I can't convince anyone the Church is true, they can only convince themselves, but I can help them to keep on looking into it.

    "There was no uprising of slaves against their masters."

    The Greatest Slave Rebellion in Modern History: Southern Slaves in the American Civil War

    "As for Jonah, he did not lie or speak presumptuously. God did warn that would happen and told Jonah to tell the people. Since the people heeded the warning and turned back to God and begged forgiveness, He had mercy on them and did not destroy them. Not the same thing at all, you are grabbing at straws now. "

    Jonah didn't tell the people "Repent or else you will be destroyed." The prophecy was "Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown." This did not happen. My point is that sometimes God changes his mind about what is going to happen based on the actions of those people to whom the prophecy is given. That's what happened in the cases of Joseph Smith's prophecies you cited, and there is Biblical precedent for such a thing as shown clearly in the case of Jonah.

    "how does something PERFECT progress?"

    Only by having children. It doesn't increase his state of perfection, nor does it increase his ability to do things, but it does increase his glory and dominion. It is the only direction in which God can progress.

    "As for God telling you directly Himself, that is meant to stop all argument since that cannot be disproved or proved. Are you proclaiming to be a prophet then? If God is actually speaking to you directly himself, shouldn’t you be leading the LDS church or writing the Book of Mormon Part 2 or something?"

    There is order in the way God communicates. God will only give us revelation pertaining to those things over which we have authority. Each individual has authority over themselves. Parents have authority for their family. Bishops have authority to receive revelation for their wards. Stake presidents for their stakes, etc. Only the President of the Church or the Quorum of the Twelve as a whole have authority to receive revelation for the entire Church. If I were to announce to the world that God had given me new scripture, every Mormon would immediately know that I'm lying or have been misled–they wouldn't even have to consider what I'm saying, because that's not the order God has set up. God only communicates for me with regards to my own life, that of my family, and my calling in the Church. I cannot even go across the street to my neighbor and say "God told me you need to do such and such." I do not have the authority to receive revelation for my neighbor.

  • Leah

    "Just as with the Bible, we can see from this brief exchange that everything is open to interpretation, and people believe what they want to believe. I think you’re twisting things to fit your point of view, you think I’m twisting things to fit my point of view. Is there any chance we’ll convince each other of anything? Probably not, because I want to believe what I believe, and you want to believe what you believe, and we’re going to latch onto those things that support our point of view, discount those things that don’t support our point of view, and where there is ambiguity we’ll interpret things to support our point of view."

    I will agree with this paragraph entirely.

    My whole point of responding to your blog was to show you the error in believing the God/Mary/sex topic was "an anti-mormon myth". It is definitely something that has been taught and believed by other Mormons, even though they may not run in your circles. My mother would have been arguing on here with you herself to enlighten you on that subject with her "If the prophet said it it's true!" argument if she could figure out the internet.

    "My purpose with this blog is merely to help people keep an open mind by stating that nobody can prove the LDS Church to be false. If they can’t prove it to be false, there must logically exist the possibility that it’s true, and hopefully that’s enough to keep people looking into it until they can discover the truth for themselves."

    This statement could be true of ALL religions. You cannot prove that Christianity is not true or that the Bible is missing any parts. In fact there have been thousands of manuscripts found, whole and fragments, that all compliment one another. Where are the missing parts? Did the same exact "missing parts" all disappear from every single copy? If you can't prove Christianity to be false, there must logically exist the possibility that it's true!

  • Joshua Steimle

    Well, it sounds like we're coming closer and closer to some sort of agreement, or at least a truce :)

    "It is definitely something that has been taught and believed by other Mormons, even though they may not run in your circles."

    If it has been taught and believed by 0.01% of Mormons, and not in General Conference, not in LDS scripture, not in LDS teaching manuals, then I would say that qualifies as having not been taught at all. I think President Harold B. Lee, a former prophet of the LDS Church, helped to clarify any confusion on this issue (The Teachings of Harold B. Lee, ed. Clyde J. Williams, Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1996, p. 14, as cited by Barry Bickmore, FARMS Review of Books, Vol. 13, No. 2, 2001, pp. 247-248):

    You asked about . . . the birth of the Savior. Never have I talked about sexual intercourse between Deity and the mother of the Savior. If teachers were wise in speaking of this matter about which the Lord has said but very little, they would rest their discussion on this subject with merely the word which are recorded on this subject in Luke 1:34-35:

    "Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her. The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God."

    Remember that the being who was brought about by [Mary's] conception was a divine personage. We need not question His method to accomplish His purposes. Perhaps we would do well to remember the words of Isaiah 55:8-9: "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts."

    Let the Lord rest His case with this declaration and wait until He sees fit to tell us more.

    (thanks to Jeff Lindsay for the quote and reference)

    Harold B. Lee wasn't saying there wasn't a sexual relationship involved, but he was saying there is no LDS doctrine on the matter. Thus, if it has ever been taught as doctrine (which I still don't see that it has been by any leader), that teaching has been in error if only in that the speaker has spoken without authorization of the Church.

    "This statement could be true of ALL religions. You cannot prove that Christianity is not true or that the Bible is missing any parts. In fact there have been thousands of manuscripts found, whole and fragments, that all compliment one another. Where are the missing parts? Did the same exact “missing parts” all disappear from every single copy? If you can’t prove Christianity to be false, there must logically exist the possibility that it’s true!"

    I'm not trying to prove that Christianity or any other religion is false, but if people of other religions feel inclined to defend their religions in the same manner I do, more power to them, that is not my concern.

    As for the missing parts of the Bible, here are two examples:

    1. The Apocrypha – The 14 apocryphal books of the Bible were included in the original version of the King James Bible. So you could say that right there we have 14 books missing, although of course they're available to all, just not as part of the Bible.

    2. The missing letters of Paul – There are four epistles referenced by Paul in the Pauline epistles which are not contained in the Bible. If these were accessible, is there any good reason why they weren't included in the Bible? How can we say the Bible is "complete" without knowing what was contained in this epistles, unless we assume that God would never create an "incomplete Bible" which is quite a stretch, since the Bible says no such thing anywhere.

  • Leah

    There are references to what was in the letters Paul wrote, and we know they existed. You can also read the books of the Apocrypha.

    I meant "missing" parts that show Jesus taught what Mormonism teaches today…which is what Mormons claim. That the "gospel" was taught in the manner of what the LDS church teaches, but it has been "lost" over time which is why Joseph Smith needed to "restore the gospel". Restore means to reestablish or bring back what has been lost, and I meant there is no proof that any of what JS has "restored" was ever practiced or missing…the Apocrypha does not support it either.

  • Leah

    http://lds.org/liahona/1981/06/fourteen-fundament

    I have come across new information from LDS sources that back up my (and many others peoples) arguments. You took the argument off the table about the quotes from the prophets above regarding the God/Mary/sex topic, saying the prophets did not say "thus saith the Lord" and that it could be opinion. The above link is 14 Fundamentals in how good Mormons are suppose to follow their prophets. #6 is the one concerning this argument:

    "Sixth: The prophet does not have to say “Thus saith the Lord” to give us scripture.

    Sometimes there are those who argue about words. They might say the prophet gave us counsel but that we are not obliged to follow it unless he says it is a commandment. But the Lord says of the Prophet, “Thou shalt give heed unto all his words and commandments which he shall give unto you.” (D&C 21:4.)"

    This is from your prophet, Ezra Taft Benson, on the official LDS website. You also told me I had taken the quote from Brigham Young out of context when he said all his words were scripture, but here it is again quoted right along with #6:

    "Said Brigham Young, “I have never yet preached a sermon and sent it out to the children of men, that they may not call scripture.” (Journal of Discourses, 13:95.) That sounds like I took it the absolute correct context. It is you who is questioning your prophets.I am seriously disturbed by this list. Also if you try arguing this was taken out of context or not applied to certain matters, #5 reads:

    "Fifth: The prophet is not required to have any particular earthly training or diplomas to speak on any subject or act on any matter at any time."

    My mother and other devout Mormons would argue you just don't have a strong enough faith in the prophet and his word. You are probably going to have to repent for this. Shhhh….do not argue…follow the prophet…do as you are told…pay no attention to the man behind the curtain…shhhh….

    Also to end, probably the ultimate reason I would NEVER return to Mormonism is because I follow Jesus Christ, hence the name Christian. Here is a perfect example of who Mormons truly follow. #14 Fundamental:

    "14. The prophet and the presidency—the living prophet and the First Presidency—follow them and be blessed—reject them and suffer."

    I FOLLOW JESUS. He is the only one I would suffer for rejecting! Mormonism is built on men and an allegiance to a church and its leaders! Sad.

    • Joshua Steimle

      For the sake of argument, let's say that Mormons must take every single word ever said by a prophet or apostle as the word of God. You have still not shown me any statement from a prophet or apostle saying God had sex with Mary. You have shown me statements which you interpret as saying that, but you have not shown me proof that this is what they are saying.

      "Mormonism is built on men and an allegiance to a church and its leaders! Sad."

      Mormonism is no more built on allegiance to a church and its modern-day leaders than was the ancient Church built on allegiance to Peter and the apostles. Christ created a church in his day with twelve apostles. These were men. The other members of the Church followed those leaders because Christ told them to, because those leaders were authorized to speak and act in the name of God and Christ. We follow our leaders today because God and Christ have told us to, and because those leaders are authorized to speak and act in the name of God and Christ today. You might reasonably believe we are in error about whether or not our leaders are authorized as prophets and apostles, but to find fault in the organization of the LDS Church is to find fault with the Bible.

  • James Horne

    Sorry Joshua, there is nothing to support the early-Christ church myth of Mormonism or leadership keys of Roman-Catholic tradition. Jesus did not start a church. Paul was the greatest recorded of all the early evangelical fathers, and he started many churches, which of course are nothing more than the meeting of two or more followers of Christ. You would have a more difficult time supporting your claim, then any anti-Mormon speaking of theistic-coitus incest.

  • dLeah

    It's not for the sake of argument, it looks pretty clear it was ordered by your prophet to listen to them on any and every topic, whether they say "thus saith the Lord" or not…yep it was all laid out right there on the LDS website by your prophet.

    “Christ was Begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”

    (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 547, 1966)

    Answer me this: How are mortal men begotten by mortal fathers? Come on and be honest. There is no other meaning for this, and if you assign one, you have not only put on blinders but you have left all reason. And remember, according to Benson McConkie did NOT have to say "thus saith the Lord" in order for you to listen to it.

    “Now, we are told in scriptures that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God in the flesh. Well, now for the benefit of the older ones, HOW ARE CHILDREN BEGOTTEN? I answer just as Jesus Christ was begotten of the flesh… Jesus is the only person who had our Heavenly Father as the father of his body.”

    (Joseph Fielding Smith, Family Home Evening Manual, pages 125, 126, 1972) emphasis mine

    Now here, JFS is even dumbing it down for you. How ARE children begotten Joshua? You know your church leaders would never say the actual word "sex" in church. But they said it just the same without using the word. Don't you believe God is up on Kolob still having sex with his wives up there? Why would you shun the words of your prophet stating he came down and had sex with Mary too? Your God spends A LOT of time doing it to make all these spirit children.

    “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the MOST LITERAL SENSE. The body in which He performed His mission in the flesh was sired by that some Holy Being we worship as God, our Eternal Father. Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost.”

    (Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, page 7) emphasis mine

    Here Benson also denies and contradicts the biblical teaching of how Jesus was conceived. The Bible clearly Mary "was found with child of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 1:18) and that Joseph should "fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 1:20). But I am sure that somehow, someway, you will rationalize Benson's statement to be taken out of context.

    And the disciples, later called apostles, were needed as witnesses of Jesus' resurrection so they could spread the good news (gospel). An apostle is a messenger. They were disciples when Jesus was with them, or students.

    Jesus called people to believe in him, he did not set up actual physical churches. The "church" in the New Testament is a body of believers. And no prophet anywhere in the Bible had 12 apostles. Not 1. Moses didn't have apostles. Jeremiah didn't have apostles. Isaiah didn't have apostles, or a quorum of 70. So why does your prophet have apostles? Your church leadership structure is not based on the leadership of early Christianity.

    Thank you James Horne, for also bringing up again the incestuous implications this has also. Mary was God's spirit child from heaven in Mormonism. So why would he impregnate his daughter, even if you argue it was done through insemination?

  • Joshua Steimle

    @james – I understand that from your perspective there is no evidence to support my perspective, but it is not my objective to prove my perspective to you. I know it is true, that is enough for me. For others, I merely am attempting to show that nobody can prove the perspective of the LDS Church to be false, and that therefore it may be true and bears further investigation. I am trying to help people keep an open mind, that's all.

    But you guys have inspired me to create a new post entitled Do Mormons Believe Their Church Mirrors The Ancient Church of Christ? so if you want to continue that conversation I'm happy to do it on that post.

    @Leah – “Christ was Begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.”

    Leah, I'm assuming you are familiar with artificial insemination and in vitro fertilization. It is not a stretch to say that a child begotten via artificial insemination was begotten the same way as a child begotten through normal sexual relations, that is, by the joining of a sperm with an egg, and the combination of DNA. If mere mortal men can invent such techniques, I'm sure it is no challenge for God. What Mormons dispute is the idea that Christ is not the literal offspring of God, that God was not involved and that the Holy Ghost was responsible, or that Christ is not the literal son of God, separate and distinct from God in being, but rather God himself.

    Likewise with President Smith's statement "I answer just as Jesus Christ was begotten of the flesh… Jesus is the only person who had our Heavenly Father as the father of his body." Artificial insemination is "of the flesh." Again, it's important to understand context. These statements were not made in a vacuum, but in response to popularized notions amongst traditional Christianity that deny Christ as being the literal son of God and make him into something different that distorts the truth. Nobody is saying anything about sex, but they are emphatically stating that Christ is God's literal son, both spiritually and physically.

    This is why Pres. Benson goes on to say "Jesus was not the son of Joseph, nor was He begotten by the Holy Ghost." He's not making this statement because he had these ideas himself, but because he is responding to statements made by others. There are those who have sought to cast doubt on the divinity of Christ by saying he was really Joseph's son, and this "son of God" stuff is myth or legend that came about afterward. They are saying that Christ was merely a great teacher, but son of God? C'mon… There are others who have said Christ was conceived by the Holy Ghost, which is also incorrect. Christ is the literal son of God, with God's DNA, and this makes him different than anyone else ever born on the earth, because no one else has had God as the father of his or her body. There is no statement about sexual relations. That's not the point of the statement.

    “was found with child of the Holy Ghost”

    Yes, Mormons believe this part of the Bible too, although perhaps we interpret it slightly differently than those of other faiths. As Bruce R. McConkie said "Mary, his mother, 'was carried away in the Spirit' (1 Ne. 11:13-21), was 'overshadowed' by the Holy Ghost, and the conception which took place 'by the power of the Holy Ghost' resulted in the bringing forth of the literal and personal Son of God the Father. (Alma 7:10; 2 Ne. 17:14; Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38.) Christ is not the Son of the Holy Ghost, but of the Father."

    "Thank you James Horne, for also bringing up again the incestuous implications this has also. Mary was God’s spirit child from heaven in Mormonism. So why would he impregnate his daughter, even if you argue it was done through insemination?"

    There's quite a bit of stuff in the Bible that seems weird to our modern sensibilities. Why would God put a brother and sister together (Adam and Eve)? If Adam and Eve were the only two people on the earth, then who did their children marry? Why did God command the ancient prophets to kill animals all the time and sprinkle blood in certain places and such? Why did God command Abraham to kill his own son? Why did God command the armies of Israel to go into certain cities and kill men, women, and children? And since traditional Christianity believes God, Christ, and the Holy Ghost are one, if Christ was conceived of the Holy Ghost, then what's the difference? God is still the father of Christ, except if they're all the same being, then this means Christ impregnated his own mother with himself and was his own father! We might have to invent a new word that goes beyond "incestuous" to describe that relationship.

  • Leah

    Again, this shows how different our beliefs are. Even though God told us "His ways are not our ways", you have managed to completely make our ways His ways. Christians do not believe God can impregnate a human in human ways, for He is not a man. He does not have DNA, He does not have sexual reproductive organs, He does not have flesh and bone. I am fighting the wrong fight with you. It is the very nature of God you have distorted which is why this topic was relevant. Mormons dragged God down to our level and made Him human, and that is the real travesty and the real issue why all of your theology is not Christian and false. You don't know God. You have also twisted the Trinity, showing you do not understand it. You made the Trinity into something you could wrap your human mind around too. Christians also don't believe Adam and Eve were brother and sister, that is another Mormon construct and is not biblical. Now their children did marry one another but it was needed to populate the earth, and God made it clear once it was no longer needed. The human race was also in its purest form, so the "incest" would not have produced abnormalities at that time that it would today.

    Why did God have ancient prophets sacrifice animals? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did God command Abraham to kill his son? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. As is all of the old testament…it all leads to Jesus! Why did God have one door on the ark and whoever did not enter it perished? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did Jonah stay in the belly of the whale 3 days? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did God command the armies of Israel to kill them? They were evil and practicing infant sacrifice to pagan gods for financial gain, and He did not want those practices to infect the Israelites. All of this makes perfect sense when you place Jesus as the center of your worship and understanding. Man is in the center of mormonism and what he can do and accomplish. Put Jesus in the center, focus on his accomplishments. It will set you free.

  • James Horne

    Joshua, I do appreciate the respectful tone of the discussion. However, with this statement:

    "I know it is true, that is enough for me. For others, I merely am attempting to show that nobody can prove the perspective of the LDS Church to be false, and that therefore it may be true and bears further investigation. I am trying to help people keep an open mind, that’s all."

    You have retreated to the untouchable safe confines of the true believer. You ask others to have an open mind, but proudly acclaim your's is closed and so full of faith, that facts do not matter. I hope you can see the irony and understand that the quoted proclamation applies to every believer from truther, unicorn hunter, Reptilians, Scientologist, Harold Campingite, to any other accepted religion.

    This discussion started with you asserting that God-sex with Mary was an anti-Mormon myth. I think at this point, whether or not you concede the point fully, we have displayed that the issue is not that cut and dry. Many Mormons once believed it and preached it, many still do. While a practicing Mormon is not required or compelled to believe it, like you; it is hardly an anti-Mormon creation or invention.

    Thanks.

  • Joshua Steimle

    @leah – "Even though God told us “His ways are not our ways”, you have managed to completely make our ways His ways."

    Is this not what you're doing by claiming that the idea of Christ being literally God's son is incestuous?

    "Christians do not believe God can impregnate a human in human ways, for He is not a man. He does not have DNA, He does not have sexual reproductive organs, He does not have flesh and bone. I am fighting the wrong fight with you. It is the very nature of God you have distorted which is why this topic was relevant."

    We may disagree on the nature of God, but who is right and who is wrong? We both believe the Bible agrees with our perspective because we each interpret the words there differently.

    "Now their children did marry one another but it was needed to populate the earth, and God made it clear once it was no longer needed. "

    Why can't we then say that it was "needed" for God to impregnate Mary?

    "Why did God have ancient prophets sacrifice animals? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did God command Abraham to kill his son? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. As is all of the old testament…it all leads to Jesus! Why did God have one door on the ark and whoever did not enter it perished? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did Jonah stay in the belly of the whale 3 days? It was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Why did God command the armies of Israel to kill them? They were evil and practicing infant sacrifice to pagan gods for financial gain, and He did not want those practices to infect the Israelites. All of this makes perfect sense when you place Jesus as the center of your worship and understanding."

    As we can see, things that seem quite strange to one person can make perfect sense to another based on context and perspective. If you can so easily explain these things which many find barbaric, weird, strange, wrong, etc., why are you so quick to judge things you find strange?

    @james – "You have retreated to the untouchable safe confines of the true believer. You ask others to have an open mind, but proudly acclaim your’s is closed and so full of faith, that facts do not matter. I hope you can see the irony and understand that the quoted proclamation applies to every believer from truther, unicorn hunter, Reptilians, Scientologist, Harold Campingite, to any other accepted religion. "

    In order for me to retreat I would have to back away from something I've said or some action I've taken. From the very beginning of starting this website I've stated that my purpose here is not to prove anything other than that Mormonism cannot be proven false and therefore may be true. I fully recognize that it is quite easy for any other religion or belief system to take the same rather unassailable position, but that is not my concern, since I am not trying to prove that any other religion is false. My website is a response to those who claim that Mormonism is not true. There are many who say it is, and to them I say "What proof do you have?" They give their proof, and I attempt to show, using logic and reason, why their proof is invalid.

    "This discussion started with you asserting that God-sex with Mary was an anti-Mormon myth. I think at this point, whether or not you concede the point fully, we have displayed that the issue is not that cut and dry. Many Mormons once believed it and preached it, many still do. While a practicing Mormon is not required or compelled to believe it, like you; it is hardly an anti-Mormon creation or invention."

    Nobody has yet shown proof that God-sex with Mary has ever been taught or preached by Mormon leaders. Leah has given me the same quotes over and over again, and I've shown over and over again that they say nothing about sex between God and Mary. If Leah wants to believe those quotes say something which they do not say, she has that right, but she's simply wrong.

    Now, can I see how someone could easily misinterpret those quotes? Sure, that's understandable. But I would expect an open-minded person in search of truth to desire and be able to understand those quotes in their context, as responses to claims that cast doubt upon the literal sonship of Christ and his physical, corporeal reality, and not as commentary on the technical aspects of how Mary came to be pregnant. I can only assume that Leah's refusal to understand things from this perspective, whether or not she believes them to be true, means that her goal is not to learn the truth about what Mormons believe, but to find justification for the stance she has taken against the LDS Church.

    The doctrines of the Church are printed in lesson manuals, the scriptures, are taught over and over and over again in General Conference and in other talks everywhere. They are dissected, clarified, explained, detailed, and examined. By the time one is a teenager one has been taught the core doctrines of the Church hundreds of times over. What Leah has given are three quotes that she can't prove as saying what she thinks they say. I've been active in the LDS Church for 36 years. I've listened to or watched every General Conference for the past three decades. I've read thousands of pages of Church publications. I've read scores of books on doctrinal matters. I have never heard of nor read anything from Church leaders regarding a sexual relationship between God and Mary, and yet you would expect me to disregard all that, based on three quotes that can't be proven to say what Leah says they say? I stand by my original statement–the idea that Mormons teach that God had sex with Mary is a myth perpetuated by anti-Mormons in order to make the Mormon church look like a bunch of crazy lunatics. I have seen no evidence that this was ever a doctrine of the Church, nor that it was ever taught by any leader of the Church. And I'll stand by that statement unless you can produce a verifiable quote from a prophet or apostle of the Church saying "God told me that he had sexual relations with Mary to create Jesus."

  • Leah

    Joshua, Joshua, Joshua! You forget, the reason I believe it is because my mother, a devout Mormon, told me it was true and an LDS belief! She said the prophets taught it. I am not refusing to see anything, I was taught that it was true by MORMONS. Then you come along and claim it's anti-Mormon and not true. My mother has been an active member the 60+ years of her life and watches all the conferences too. If you claim to have any open mind you will need to accept James' point that this was hardly an anti-Mormon myth or creation.

    "I stand by my original statement–the idea that Mormons teach that God had sex with Mary is a myth perpetuated by anti-Mormons in order to make the Mormon church look like a bunch of crazy lunatics."

    So my mother is an anti-Mormon?? HA! I'm going to tell her you said so. I think I should have her come on here and respond to you, I'd almost pay to see the tongue lashing she would give you. Mormon vs. Mormon! Thanks for the laugh by the way. A Mormon who is an anti-Mormon…now that's a first.

  • Joshua Steimle

    "You forget, the reason I believe it is because my mother, a devout Mormon, told me it was true and an LDS belief! She said the prophets taught it. I am not refusing to see anything, I was taught that it was true by MORMONS."

    It sounds like it was taught to you by a Mormon. Just because your mom taught it to you doesn't mean it's taught as Church doctrine.

    "So my mother is an anti-Mormon?? HA! I’m going to tell her you said so. I think I should have her come on here and respond to you, I’d almost pay to see the tongue lashing she would give you. Mormon vs. Mormon! Thanks for the laugh by the way. A Mormon who is an anti-Mormon…now that’s a first."

    Ok, I'm prepared to make an exception and take back a part of my argument–the God-Mary-sex idea is perpetuated by anti-Mormons and your mom :) But in all seriousness, if your mom believes God had sex with Mary I'd be interested to know her sources. If all she's got is what you've shown me then it appears she's been engaging in a bit of personal speculation.

  • James Horne

    Joshua, using your own frustrating logic, I do not have to prove anything. You have to prove to me that 100% of all Mormons do not believe it, and there is not even a hint of a chance or possibility that one Mormon believes it to be so.

    Besides, as both Leah and I and others have claimed, we know active Mormons that believe it and preach it.

    Once you start down the road of Church Doctrine(which you can never hope to define completely) you are in essence making a 'no true Scotsman' fallacy.

    If we try this from a different angle, which anti-Mormon started this myth since you so easily assert:

    "I stand by my original statement–the idea that Mormons teach that God had sex with Mary is a myth perpetuated by anti-Mormons in order to make the Mormon church look like a bunch of crazy lunatics."

    Thanks

    • Joshua Steimle

      "You have to prove to me that 100% of all Mormons do not believe it, and there is not even a hint of a chance or possibility that one Mormon believes it to be so. "

      I've never stated that no Mormon believes such a thing. I've never stated that no Mormon has ever taught such a thing. What I've stated is that it's not doctrine of the Church, and it's not taught by the Church. By that I mean it's not in our scriptures, it's not in any official publication of the Church, it's never brought up in General Conference, and Leah's quotes notwithstanding I still have seen no evidence of any high-level Church leader saying God had sex with Mary, although I have presented quotes from Church leaders to the contrary. If someone's mom teaches it to them, this is not "the Church", at least not by my definition. If a Sunday school teacher teaches it, this is not "the Church". If a bishop or stake president teaches it this is not "the Church". I have never heard anyone, ever, anywhere teach it, but I won't rule out that someone somewhere has in addition to Leah's mom. But if you were to automatically say that anything any Church members says anywhere at any time, regardless of their position or authority within the Church to declare what is and what isn't Church doctrine, is doctrine, then we are arguing semantics rather than the real point.

      If, according to my definition above, you still want to insist it is taught by the Church and is a doctrine of the Church then sure, the burden is on me to prove to you otherwise. If you want to convince me to change my position then the burden of proof is upon you.

      As for who started all this, I don't know. What I do know is that if you search online regarding the topic, you won't find any official Church source teaching the idea as doctrine, but you'll find quite a few anti-Mormon sites bringing it up, which I believe supports my point that it's not taught by the Church, but rather by anti-Mormons.

  • Leah

    If you could not find any information regarding the teaching from the church, does that really mean it was never a teaching? The Mormon church has changed it's doctrine, yes it's doctrine (not just beliefs or teachings) several times and certain things are not taught as doctrine anymore, but it was at one time. With ever changing "revelation" how do you truly know what believers were taught at different times? I think this is probably the answer to why older members know and believe these things, but the younger ones do not and find it crazy. The Mormons didn't let black people hold the priesthood until 1978, and that was church doctrine before "God" revealed he had changed his mind. The temple rituals were completely different before, my mom went through the temple with the old rituals and said they had to change them because it made others "uncomfortable". If important doctrine and sacred temple rituals can be changed, what else can is the issue?

    I am going to ask my mother who gave her the teaching or how she came across it and I will get back to you.

  • Leah

    I'd like to see you argue away this statement by Brigham Young. Good ol' Brigham, he's always good for clarifying where the crazy comes from in Mormonism:

    "The birth of the Savior was as natural as are the births of our children; it was the RESULT OF NATURAL ACTION. He partook of flesh and blood- was begotten of his Father, as we are of our fathers." (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 8:115)

    "Natural action" would NOT be artificial insemination, nor would it be supernatural! Natural is not supernatural. He said natural action. That is sex. Look up the definition of natural action. It would not be with the help of a supernatural god. And just in case you did try to twist it, Heber C. Kimball clarifies also:

    "In relation to the way in which I look upon the works of God and his creatures, I will say that I WAS NATURALLY BEGOTTEN; SO WAS MY FATHER, AND ALSO MY SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST. According to the Scriptures, he is the first begotten of his father in the flesh, and there was NOTHING UNNATURAL about it." (Heber C. Kimball, Journal of discourses, 8:211) (emphasis mine of course)

    Does anyone else know how babies are "begotten naturally" by "natural action"? I do, and it's not through artificial insemination, and it's also not by any supernatural circumstances. This is not just my interpretation, it's science. This denies the supernatural miracle that made the virgin birth special and different from any other natural conception and birth, it also denies any insemination which is also not natural. Just because this belief is being whitewashed now to try and make Mormonism fit with mainstream Christianity does not rule it out as being taught by the Mormon prophets. These quotes are why older, more faithful long term followers have held these beliefs! They took what the prophets said literally, and what you know as Mormonism Joshua is a more watered down, whitewashed version being sold to new converts today. There is so much in Mormonisms' past that has to be buried or explained away or covered up, doesn't that in itself concern you?

  • Joshua Steimle

    "If you could not find any information regarding the teaching from the church, does that really mean it was never a teaching? The Mormon church has changed it’s doctrine, yes it’s doctrine (not just beliefs or teachings) several times and certain things are not taught as doctrine anymore, but it was at one time. With ever changing “revelation” how do you truly know what believers were taught at different times?"

    We have plenty of original printings of books, transcripts, etc. from the first days of the LDS Church through to modern days. And then there are the scores of personal journals/diaries. Any change in doctrine that was taught in any sort of general fashion would be virtually impossible to hide.

    "The Mormons didn’t let black people hold the priesthood until 1978, and that was church doctrine before “God” revealed he had changed his mind."

    It's a case of semantics, perhaps, but not letting blacks hold the priesthood was not doctrine, it was practice, and there is a distinct difference between doctrine and practice. As Marcus Martins, a black member of the LDS Church and a Ph.D stated in his book Blacks and the Mormon Priesthood: Setting the Record Straight, "In the early 1900s some members of the Church, including some Church leaders, argued that the priesthood ban might make sense if people of the Black race had been less valiant, or less faithful, in the premortal existence… Once again, there are no scriptures or official declarations setting forth such a hypothesis as heavenly truth… People have a right to their opinion. But having a right doesn't mean that personal opinions may automatically become doctrine…" (Pg. 14)

    If you really want to understand that issue, at least as well as it can be understood, go read that book.

    "The temple rituals were completely different before, my mom went through the temple with the old rituals and said they had to change them because it made others “uncomfortable”. If important doctrine and sacred temple rituals can be changed, what else can is the issue?"

    The specific actions of temple rituals are not doctrine. This is the same misunderstanding that gets people hung up on similarities between LDS temple rites and those of the Masons. The specific actions, motions, signs, etc. aren't set in stone. They don't really matter, per se. As I understand it, they are completely arbitrary. God could have them be whatever he wanted them to be. They are suited to the particular context and experiences of the place and time in which they are given, to help the members of the Church in that time. As the context and experiences of Church members changes, the specifics of these ordinances may change as well. What is important is that God is the one who dictates or approves what they are, so that there is order.

    Take baptism for example, and as a disclaimer I'm going to say this is my opinion, and I may be wrong, but I think I'm right or I wouldn't say it. It doesn't really matter whether baptism is by immersion, or with a few drops of water, what matters is that it's the way God said it should be. That is, if God wanted to he could allow baptism by sprinkling a few drops, or baptism could be something entirely different not involving water at all. The doctrine is that we all must be cleansed and made perfect in order to return to God and that this requires the Atonement of Christ. God then sets up rules, commandments, ordinances, etc. to help us be cleansed and purified, but those commandments and ordinances are means to an end, not the end in and of themselves. If different means would do a better job of achieving the end, I suppose God could change the means without changing the doctrine.

    Re: the new quotes, I'm not sure if you're not reading my comments or merely not understanding them. This is why understanding context is so important. These statements were not made in a vacuum. They were in reaction to something somebody else said, and without knowing what they were in reaction to we cannot understand these quotes. But once we know the context, then the meaning of these quotes becomes easy to understand and quite clear. What is the context? That some people have taught that Christ is not the literal Son of God, that he was not the Only Begotten of the Father, that he was not half man, half God, not half mortal, half immortal, but that he was either a normal human like the rest of us, or not a human at all and merely a spirit that appeared as a man.

    In reaction these quotes are saying that no, these are false teachings. The truth is that Christ was literally the Son of God. He is the result of a combination of God's flesh and Mary's flesh, just like any natural child. God's DNA and Mary's DNA, combining to create a being who was half man, half God, half mortal, half immortal, therefore able to perform the Atonement and suffer for the sins of the world as no other being could without dying.

    Of sex there is no mention, nor reference, and your misunderstanding of these quotes is due to your not knowing the context in which they were given.

    "There is so much in Mormonisms’ past that has to be buried or explained away or covered up, doesn’t that in itself concern you?"

    I am not aware of anything that has been buried or covered up, although I suppose that sounds a bit tautological. What I see is that people who have an agenda against the Church misunderstand or purposely misrepresent the doctrines, history, and practices of the Church, and then when they are given the truth they claim there has been a coverup or that things are being explained away. I will admit things very commonly have to explained, but that is the nature of things when someone does not understand something.

  • Leah

    I don't think you are understanding my comments maybe as well…with all of these quotes, can you not see why even members of the church get the idea of Mary and God having sex? In context or out, the comments fit into the Mormon view that God is a man capable of doing the deed if necessary. For the purpose of this discussion, here is just one last one to show what I mean:

    "The fleshly body of Jesus required a Mother as well as a Father. Therefore, the Father and Mother of Jesus, according to the flesh, must have been associated together in the capacity of Husband and Wife; hence the Virgin Mary must have been, for the time being, the lawful wife of God the Father: we use the term lawful Wife, because it would be blasphemous in the highest degree to say that He overshadowed her or begat the Savior unlawfully." (Orson Pratt, The Seer, page 158)

    Now why would Pratt feel the "overshadowing" would be unlawful unless Mary and God were married? If they weren't having sex, how would it be to "begat the Savior unlawfully'? In what other context could this be? Even explaining in the terms you set above, this is alluding to something other than combining DNA. It is not unlawful for an unmarried man and woman to combine DNA using insemination. And if you cannot bring yourself to see it, can you not at least see why many members have come to the "sex" conclusion from these statements?

    By the way, my mom said she picked up the belief from several other members along the way. When I told her she was being questioned by another member though she was quick to make clear that it was just her belief because it made sense to her, it is not official church doctrine. She said if the prophet came out and said it was absolutely not true then she would stop believing it, but until then it's her opinion. So she confirmed it was never really a teaching, just something her and other members discussed and agreed upon. When she told me of the belief and defended it as it was truth, I assumed it was a church teaching by her reaction. Since I consider my mother to be a good, faithful Mormon I took what she said as a church belief, and for that I was mistaken in light of her new explanation.

    But you cannot deny it has not been a widespread belief (or misconception) among some members. I read in several posts above where others know members who hold to the same belief, so I know it's not just my mom and her ward, especially since she has belonged to several. So it cannot just be an "anti-Mormon myth". There must be a reason so many Mormons have come to this conclusion. It is not debated whatsoever among Christians as a possibility, so why are just Mormons misled?

    In my opinion, it is probably a mixture of the many quotes from prophets leading members to draw certain conclusions, and the misunderstanding of who God is completely (as in him being a man capable of sex in the first place).

    • Joshua Steimle

      "can you not see why even members of the church get the idea of Mary and God having sex?"

      If there are a few members of the Church who believe it, then sure, I can understand that. Church members and leaders aren't perfect and there are plenty of misunderstandings that go around. But I'd be surprised if more than a handful of members believed it. I suppose we'd have to do a survey to figure that out one way or the other.

      "If they weren’t having sex, how would it be to “begat the Savior unlawfully’?"

      The question is what would Orson Pratt deem as "unlawful"? Perhaps he would have considered artificial insemination without marriage to be unlawful.

      "But you cannot deny it has not been a widespread belief (or misconception) among some members. I read in several posts above where others know members who hold to the same belief, so I know it’s not just my mom and her ward, especially since she has belonged to several. So it cannot just be an “anti-Mormon myth”. There must be a reason so many Mormons have come to this conclusion. It is not debated whatsoever among Christians as a possibility, so why are just Mormons misled?"

      Perhaps the only thing we really disagree on is the extent to which it is believed by members of the Church. Everything I have experienced leads me to believe there is nothing more than a handful, certainly less than 1% of Church members. That might still mean there are thousands who believe it, but if it were taught by the Church then there would be millions who believed it. There could also be handfuls of members who believe that Joseph Smith only had one wife and that Mormons shouldn't drink hot chocolate. The Church doesn't teach these things, but it wouldn't be hard to understand why some member might believe such things. The point is you aren't going to hear the Church teaching that God had sex with Mary. If you hear such a thing, 99 times out of 100 it's going to come from someone outside the Church who is trying to make the Church look bad. Sure, 1 out of 100 times it might be a Church member who has been misled into thinking this is what the Church believes, but if it's only 1 out of 100 you might as well ignore it.

  • Scott

    Joshua and Leah,

    your debates are interesting. I have one comment. Both are speaking of the Immaculate Conception as though it was an event. In reality Mary, The Queen of Heaven, Mother of God, Queen of Peace and Mother of Hope is the actual Immaculate Conception herself not a recipient of an event. Hail Mary on her feast day of the Church 12-8-11

    Blessings

    Mary Christmas

  • brian

    ok everyone, i read a decent way down this list and then stopped. Joshua clearly means well with his defense, but he is definitely not qualified to defend his church against intense haters like leah who have years and years of experience against it.

  • Leah

    Actually, I have only been a born again Christian for 3 years, and have been researching the differences between Mormonism and Christianity intensely for only about 2 years (I was raised Mormon though).

    Since it appears to you that I have years and years of experience, I will take that as a compliment. Thanks! :)

  • Mark

    You ignorant Mormons make me laugh. You really believe a prophet of God is a man who had over 30 wives, 7 of them being underage? Really? You believe Joseph Smith placed sheer stone and gold tablets in a hat that were written in reformed Egyptian (a language that doesn't even exist), and looked into the hat and was able to magically translate them into English? Have you lost your minds?

    No matter how much logic and rational a person shows Mormons, they will always believe they are right. That is the problem, they are not searching for the truth. If they were really searching for the truth, they would be willing to give up their beliefs in order to know what the truth really is.

    Lets look at the Westboro Baptist Church. These people believe they know the truth, they believe by picketing dead soldiers funerals and calling them "fags" and spreading hate speech (which is contrary to what the Bible says about love) makes them Christians. They truly believe they know Gods word and believe its ok to spread hate speech. They are simply ignorant and uneducated.

    Mormons, you are the same. Most of you Mormons aren't educated about the Bible, and the ones that are educated have to resort to twisting the Bible and skewing its word. Ultimately, Mormons believe the Book Of Mormon is more correct than the Bible (The book of Mormon is more correct than the Bible, (History of the Church, vol. 4, p. 461.). That way when something in the Book Of Mormon doesn't make sense compared to the Bible, Mormons can say "well we don't know if the Bible is translated correctly." Really? When all else fails your last resort to make yourselves seem right is to discredit the Bible? This is why Mormonism is the most deceptive cult there is.

    Mormons basis for the Book Of Mormon being more correct than the Bible is because Joseph Smith was a prophet. This in itself is an illogical, irrational statement. Anyone who is intelligent, rational, EDUCATED, and searching for the truth can see Joseph Smith was NO prophet of God, quite the opposite. He was a fraud, a treasure hunter, who had been arrested and held in a court of law for digging up too much gold. He wanted to get rich quick, so he created a story where he ran off into the woods and an angel appeared to him. How convenient for him; A: only he saw the angel, B: only he saw the gold plates, and C: there is no evidence for the hold plates existing, besides what Joseph Smith says.

    If a felon who was arrested for robbing a bank was released from prison, would you allow him to work at a bank? Why not? Because of his track record. This is the same situation with Joseph Smith. We know he liked digging for gold, we know he was held in court for treasure hunting, we know he and his father were obsessed with money; so did it just happen by chance that he saw an "angel" and only HE could see the gold tablets? No, he made it all up to get rich. Joseph Smith wanted money, he wanted women, he wanted attention, so he simply created a story to try and get those things. Joseph Smith is no prophet of God.

    Only an ignorant, uneducated, brainwashed fool would believe Joseph Smith. Mormons will argue all day long, despite the reasonable facts and rational arguments presented to them disproving their false religion. This is due to their brainwashing. They believe no matter what, that they are right because they've been taught that. They've been conditioned to believe The Book Of Mormon to be true. They aren't alone, but in my experience with talking to them, they are the most ignorant people I've ever met. The way they try to twist and skew their prophets teachings is laughable. They are simply fools who lack the ability to think for themselves and look for the truth. It's sad, but laughable.

  • Leah

    With my family members being so duped, I don't find it too funny…more sad and angering. Blindness and pride is what it boils down too. Just think if you had spent 60+ or – years of your life giving of your money, time, talents, faith and trust to an institution only to find out it was a sham! Really think about that…like a spouse…Say you were married for 30 years with children, grandchildren, property, accounts, a LIFE together and then find out your spouse didn't love you anymore, was leaving you, had been lying to you all along and was having affairs the whole time. You would feel stupid, deceived, manipulated, bitter, angry, duped, lost. Mormons' pride won't allow them to accept or make them WANT to accept that they could have been lied too and manipulated their whole lives. That is a tough pill to swallow, and I know with my mom that is why she won't even think about the possibility that the church couldn't be true. Can you imagine the pain and bitterness and regret? It is willful blindness and pride. I praise God I got out when I did before I had devoted my whole life to a deceitful organization bent on making profit, and thank the Lord I put my faith and trust in Him who will never deceive me. I pray for all Mormons to take the Mormon goggles off and trust in Jesus alone and not their own works for salvation! I pray one day they will realize it is wrong to trust in a "church" and they will be incorporated into the body of believers in Christ Jesus. And we Christians need to have our arms open and be ready to accept them when they do wake up and come out!

    • Britny

      Leah, I was born and raised a Latter-day saint. I am glad that you found your faith and feel free and happy….everyone should have that feeling when they believe in God. Your family is not duped….just like you, they have found their faith that makes them feel free and happy. And when I say faith, I do not mean a church. A church is an organization of people coming together to worship a higher being. When I say faith, I mean a persons own personal belief. Like I said earlier, I am Mormon, I affiliate myself with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter -day saints, but I still have my own mind and body that God gave me. I have the right to believe in what ever I want, I choose to stay with the Mormon religion because it is what follows closely with my beliefs. Earlier in a post you stated that you pray for all Mormons to be humbled and open their eyes to the truth. I have been humbled, many times. I have been humbled many times and I am still Mormon. I have been humbled by my Heavenly Father, not by Joseph Smith, not by Thomas Monson, and not by my ward bishop. I have repented for my sins with my Savior, and will always need to repent with the help from my Savior. Brigham Young once said, “I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self security. Let every man and woman know, by the whispering of the Spirit of God to themselves, whether their leaders are walking in the path the Lord dictates, or not.
      ( Discourses of Brigham Young, sel. John A. Widtsoe [1954], 135.)
      I love that quote! And I love the fact that you have applied that to your life and you are happier for it. I have done the same thing and am happier for it. When we ask questions, we receive answers. Yes we have a prophet, however, even a prophet once said(statement above) that there is a human element in the church. That is at least what I take away from this quote. Does that mean that everything the prophets say are wrong? No. But we have the right, the mind, and the body to hear what the prophets have to say, and seek and pray for the true answers ourselves.
      Since you have prayed for me, I will in-turn pray for you. I will pray that you have the understanding of togetherness. That maybe being a part of something that's bigger then yourself(like a religion) can help change others for the better, or change yourself for the better…..I will pray that your family understands and accepts your beliefs as well as their own, and that your family can be a part of that togetherness that I mentioned earlier. I pray that when you think about your family loving and honoring God, instead of being sad and angry, you will be happy and feel blessed. I will keep you in my prayers tonight Leah. Thank you for your prayer and helping me learn to ask questions.
      Oh one more thing….you stated " Mormons' pride won't allow them to accept or make them WANT to accept that they could have been lied too and manipulated their whole lives. That is a tough pill to swallow, and I know with my mom that is why she won't even think about the possibility that the church couldn't be true. Can you imagine the pain and bitterness and regret? It is willful blindness and pride." I don't know your mom, but I know me. My husband was baptized, we got married…..I havn't had the blessing of being sealed to my husband in the temple because he stopped coming to church. It is not willful blindness and pride that gets me up on Sunday morning to walk thru those chapel doors, having everyone look at me as I enter the room alone….again, and when they ask where my husband is, it is not my pride that keeps me going, It is my personal faith in God, that I am doing the right thing. Please try and be understanding to your mother, she doesn't keep going to church because she is prideful or blind, it is because she loves God, and his word is what gets her thru the week, until she can go back to church and hear his words again.

  • Snuff

    Leah wasted a considerable amount of time on this discussion. It is pointless to argue with Mormons who continually engage in the arguments of distinctions without a difference.

  • http://blackmormons.webs.com Darrick Evenson

    I was a Mormon from 1979 to 1996. Most Mormon men older than me by 10 years definitely DID believe that God the Father had literal physical sex with Mary, and they also believed they too would "beget" Saviors with their most beautiful spirit-daughters once the world they created "fell" and saviors were needed. Brigham Young, Joseph F. Smith, Bruce R. McConkie and others DID teach this, over the pulpit. The Church openly taught it in the Sunday School manual for 1972, but that is the last time it was openly taught.

  • Joshua Steimle

    @darrick. You stated "Brigham Young, Joseph F. Smith, Bruce R. McConkie and others DID teach this, over the pulpit. "

    Can you provide any single bit of verifiable evidence to prove that any of these men, or any other authority of the LDS Church, or any official publication of the Church, ever taught "that God the Father had literal physical sex with Mary"?

  • Belle Keplin

    Mormon apostle Bruce McConkie, in perhaps the most explicit denial of the virgin birth, wrote,

    "Christ was begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers." (Mormon Doctrine, 1966, p. 547)

    I believe this to be true.

    Amen

  • Scott

    So Belle you do believe Mary gave up her virginity (God Given by the way) and had intercoarse with God?

  • Michelle Beck

    The haters are the ones that make me laugh. I too read about halfway down when it all got pretty redundant. What do any of you care what *I* or anyone else has faith in as long as we are not hurting anyone? I am happy, have a good life, not abused, oppressed or Guess all of the wards I was a member of in the last 40 years missed sharing this supposed "sexual relations" tidbit of what I am supposedly supposed to believe. My mom at 72 has never been told this (And she does go to the temple, I do not. I smoke, drink and I am still a member! Gasp!) In 40 years I have NEVER once heard or been told that Mormons believe God had sex with Mary. I lived on a block where every one of my neighbors except two were Mormon. I have gone to church, seminary, been to the temple and I have never heard a murmur of the idea. Further, I have spent a good deal of time reading a lot of the anti-LDS websites in the last 15+ years and none of those ever said it.

    It was also asked for an official statement from the church…well here you go! The church itself officially states that much of the Journal of Discourses is not to be taken at face value or as doctrine
    http://www.lds.org/study/topics/journal-of-discou

    Joshua…these folks seem to be parroting this particular web publication http://www.truthnet.org/pdf/Cults/8Answeringmormo

    As you said previously, men who gave talks from a pulpit aren't scripture and things have changed. I ask those of you who are on here bashing the LDS faith, what have you done to save the Catholics from their faith? Do you tell them that their earlier teachings that they were the one and only true church was incorrect? Do you berate them for praying to Mary or other saints as that would certainly be "putting other Gods before me"? What about the poor Jews? I mean…they don't even believe Jesus was the son of God at all so I'm guessing they totally think Mary knocked boots with someone and had a human child. Do you attack ANY other religion with as much vehemency? I doubt it. Yes, I sound angry because I am angry. I am tired of people like Leah who get so wrapped up in the born again faith (and honey, your vehemency and anger is a pretty clear trait of every drug addict/alcoholic turned bible thumper as their new addiction) that they have to spew hate in order to *save* us. Well, I believe in God the father, his son Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost. I have come unto Jesus so who the hell are you to tell me I'm wrong or need saving? *You* are not my savior. The Lord is and it is not through *you* that I come unto him. And further, I do not care what faith you have or don't have. You can be an atheist, Catholic, Buddhist or worship your neighbor's cat for all I care and that is your choice. If you are happy then be happy. Believe what you want to believe and afford me the same courtesy. People like you sat outside our beautiful new Temple in Reno, Nevada and tried to tear us down and for what? Because you're "right and I'm wrong"? And you hate my religion because it claims to be the only one? Fact is, we will all find out in the end who was right or wrong.

    Also, do you realize how uninformed it is to continue to discuss the age of Joseph Smith's wives as it relates to how we view it today? Anyone marrying now at 13 and 14 years old of course sounds ridiculous but Juliet Capulet was 14 years old and Romeo was 16. Edgar Allen Poe married his 13 year old cousin and this was not unacceptable at the time. The average age of marriage in the 18th and 19th centuries was 16 for females. Laura Ingalls Wilder became a school teacher at the age of 15 and married her husband at just past her 18th birthday in 1885. He was 28. Florence Nightengale turned down marriage at 17 which upset her parents. Molly Pitcher was 16 years old in 1770 when she married her first husband. Martha Jefferson married her first husband at 18. The youngest a female could legally marry in the 1800's was 12. Young marriages outside of the Mormon faith were not that uncommon and weren't even looked down upon. I'm not in any way saying that NOW getting married at the age of 14 is even remotely acceptable but you cannot look at how we view ages of marriage now with how we viewed them then. I also don't care if he practiced plural marriage. It's not acceptable in the church now.

    I think a lot of you would do well to take a hint from South Park…my absolute favorite quote from the guys who also wrote "The Book of Mormon" on Broadway… (they poke but they also have respect)

    Gary- "Look, maybe us Mormons do believe in crazy stories that make absolutely no sense, and maybe Joseph Smith did make it all up, but I have a great life. and a great family, and I have the Book of Mormon to thank for that. The truth is, I don't care if Joseph Smith made it all up, because what the church teaches now is loving your family, being nice and helping people. And even though people in this town might think that's stupid, I still choose to believe in it. All I ever did was try to be your friend, Stan, but you're so high and mighty you couldn't look past my religion and just be my friend back. You've got a lot of growing up to do, buddy. Suck my balls."

  • Michelle Beck

    And Belle…I appreciate your faith for whatever you believe but Bruce R McConkie's book was unauthorized, President David O. McKay asked that it not be reprinted and that it be repudiated and McConkie was also reprimanded, Apostles Marion G. Romney and Mark E. Petersen examined the book and announced that the book contained "doctrinal errors, objectionable language, discourteous tone and questionable claims". Numerous page numbers were cited including the page you reference. Sorry but officially, the church does not claim his work.

    However…this might be why Leah's family believes what they do…not because the church told them but they read a book and decided it must be so…

  • Janey

    After reading the above comments….it is quite obvious that Leah has a big chip on her shoulder and I feel for her poor Mother for having to put-up with the continual disrespect from a prideful and disgruntled daughter who doesn’t know her place. Honor your mother and father even if you lack the faith in their teachings!! Show respect to what others consider sacred—even if you don’t consider those same things to be sacred. Accepting the gospel of Jesus Christ helps to make bad men, good, and good men better. If you embraced the teachings of Jesus Christ–your conduct would rightly reflect it. But instead your conduct reflects that you have a lot of growing up to do, as well as a lot of soul searching, and repenting in order to develop a personal relationship with our Savior Jesus Christ. Seek first to learn of him and his ways before you counsel others on what is “acceptable.”

  • I Am

    The problem all these people have, is the fruits argument. The fruits and commandments of their god isn't the fruit and commandments of the God of the Bible.

    Neither is their culture.

    The God of the Bible told brothers to marry the wives of dead brothers and let that woman raise up children unto the estate of their father's brother: the dead one.

    These people don't even let half their priests get married. The ones who do, allow only one wife, and more love than that is eeeeevil.

    Yet the God of the bible told Abraham to take two wives, had his absolutely greatest prophet Moses taking two wives, and then commanding every brother in the land, whose brother died, to take those men's widows as wives.

    Also it is well known when the Jews as a nation stopped polygamy about the year 1,000. Well part of them did. The rest, are STILL polygamous.

    Not these monogomists. God's a pervert and didn't understand.

    Yet, Nephi saw that the people of this generation would be incredible whores: and, indeed, they go around wearing next to nothing, and then, have a 50% divorce rate, and they're off to the races again.

    The Jews and faithful Mormons have single digit divorce rates.

    These protestants have 50, 60 % divorce rates from decade to decade.

    The Jews, forbidden to drink much, same for Mormons, these protestants are notoriously swept over by satanic dope & alcohol addled behavior. Why hasn't your god's teaching saved you from alcohol, dope, and tobacco? You didn't get the email but we mormons got it 135 years ago to protect us from what the Lord said then – was coming . To you.

    The God of Israel said 'you'd better kill those homosexuals before they infest.'

    The god of these people dresses homosexuals up in extravagant queen robes and acts like it's a big deal to be an unmarried homosexual dressed as the queen.

    Those who allow homosexuals have them molesting EVERY thing in SIGHT.

    The God of the Bible, his NAME is MAN of HOLINESS.

    He purports himself to have a son.

    That son purports to have a father.

    But to these protestants, these two men are frauds who are preTENDING to have sexuality because… what, because they didn't know how to represent themselves as a sexless robot, but they could give me this electronic engineering and radarproof internet space age?

    See, the problem with being a protestant/Catholic is everything about your culture is in the dumps.

    50% of your women on hard pharmaceuticals? Not ours. Not the Jews' either.

    50% of your women raped/molested in her life? Not ours. Not the Jews' either.

    30% of your men raped/molested in his life? Not ours. Not the Jews' either.

    50% of your men admit to adultery on their wife? Not ours.

    50% of your men & women hate each other so bad they get divorced? Not ours.

    XX% of your men & women on ILLEGAL drugs? No double digit dope addled-isms with us.

    XX% of your men & women on tobacco.

    20% of your young men and women have a VENEREAL DISEASE? Not ours.

    So you see, the thing is, you give off all the signs of being degenerates being plagued by every possible socio/spiritual ill.

    Not us. We give off the good fruits of our upbringing and it just so happens

    you give off the fruits of yours, too.

    Guess which one seems like rotten fruit?

  • Keith

    @ I Am

    Yes, we as sinful humans under God shall reap what we sow. Mormon, Christians, Catholics, Jew.. No matter. The sun both shine upon the wicked and the just. So shall the rain fall. Your self-centered prideful touting does nothing to further God's Glory. You should be ashamed.. Pride comes before the fall. I Pray you come to the Lord In humble repentance and seek His forgiveness.

    @Leah

    To suffer are those who speak in the name of Jesus. God Bless you for your suffrage. The anti-Christians are growing in number with false religions and prophets to deceive. As you know it was stated by a true prophet. I believe it was God's will for Joshua to hear His Truth from you. May he kneel before Jesus and ask Him into his heart. To know Him as his Lord and Savior as we do. Seeking True council and communion with God on a personal level instead through the council of men.

    @Joshua

    There is Truth in all things. For Truth is of God and is God. It bears witness to His Holiness. By which ALL will then have no excuse to say they did not know of Him on the last day. Truth with Faith leads unto salvation through Christ Jesus. Test ALL that which YOU believe against HIS WORD and the Truth of it shall be revealed. That which is purified, Treasure! That which is not, discard. We each walk in and with Faith towards our destiny. Don't let your Heart be deceived by the beliefs of others. Find YOUR path. YOUR Truth. YOUR walk with Christ. The quest for the Truth is the path. The bearing of your cross of a sinful life towards salvation. Jesus will knock. And to those who answer He will come in and make His home with you. Give you the gifts of Joy and life unto everlasting. Never leave you or forsake you. I am His witness and bearer of this Truth. My Prayers are with you and all .

  • Cherokee

    I don't care about the little stuff. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I believe Jesus to be the son of God. I do not know how the virgin Mary came to conceive him, nor do I care. I believe in the holy spirit that gives divine inspiration even today. I believe in miracles and modern day prophets of the lord. I believe that Jesus died for us. I believe in life after death and eternal marriage. I believe in the resurrection, and the eternal family. I believe, I believe, I believe, and hold all of it as the truth as I have come to see it, and this is good enough for me.

  • Kiwi Christian

    Lets have the LDS leaders speak for themselves. “Christ was begotten by an immortal Father in the same way that mortal men are begotten by mortal fathers.” (Mormon Doctrine, 1966, p. 547)

    Brigham Young insisted: “I will say that I was naturally begotten; so was my father, and also my Savior Jesus Christ…he is the first begotten of his father in the flesh, and there was nothing unnatural about it” (Journal of Discourses vol.8, p.211); “Now remember from this time forth, and for ever, that Jesus Christ was not begotten by the Holy Ghost” (Journal of Discourses, vol.1, p.51).

    “The birth of our Savior was as natural as are the births of our children; it
    was the result of NATURAL ACTION. He partook of FLESH AND BLOOD–was begotten of his father, as we were of our fathers.” (JoD, vol. 8, p. 115).

    • http://www.donloper.com/ Joshua Steimle

      These quotes have already been posted in the comments below. None of them says anything about sex. They merely state what Mormons quite openly admit to believe, that Jesus is the literal offspring of a physical God. Jesus was not a spirit, not created by the Holy Ghost, etc. These leaders were speaking against common concepts of their day, not giving commentary on the intimate details of how Jesus was conceived. The point was to explain who Jesus was, more than how he came to be.

  • gary olsen

    Brigham Young said that God the Father and Mary ‘do it.’

    “When the time came that His first-born, the Saviour, should come into the world and take a tabernacle, the Father came Himself and favoured that spirit with a tabernacle instead of letting any other man do it,” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 4, p. 218). “The birth of the Savior was as natural as are the births of our children; it was the result of natural action. He partook of flesh and blood — was begotten of his Father, as we were of our fathers.” (Journal of Discourses, vol. 8, p. 115). Note: the late Bruce McConkie who was a member of the First Council of the Seventy stated “There is nothing figurative about his paternity; he was begotten, conceived and born in the normal and natural course of events…” (Mormon Doctrine, by Bruce McConkie, p. 742).

    According to the very well esteemed prophet B Young and the very esteemed apostle B McConkie they “did it”. Soooo yooooo lie. Lie Deceive Suppress=LDS. I must correct myself. I should have said “the USED to be very esteemed prophet B Young because the church has since thrown brother Brigham under the bus because of his blood atonement statements, his race statements, and his adam-god statements.