What is a Christian? – Part 3 – It’s All about Jesus
One would think that the basic requirement of being a Christian would be to believe in Jesus. The problem is, believing in Jesus means different who is jesus things to people. Ask twenty people who they think Jesus is and you might get twenty different answers. The most common are a good man, a holy man, a myth, a religious Jew, a son of God, and God Himself in human form. There is controversy even within churches as to who they believe Jesus to be.
As an example, the Church of Christ believes that Jesus was the son of God, as we are all sons and daughters of God, but not the same as God. Generally they regard Jesus as one of several important moral and ethical teachers who have shown humans how to live a life of love, service, and compassion. Another denomination, the Episcopalian church, follows the Nicene creed which confesses that Jesus is God, but within the church, they allow for individual interpretations of belief. There is even an Episcopal priest in Seattle who is both a practicing Christian And a Muslim. She believes the Trinity is an idea about God and cannot be taken literally. She does not believe Jesus and God are the same, but rather that God is more than Jesus. Within mainline churches who profess that Jesus is God, there are ‘believers’ who believe otherwise. Then there are many churches who believe in Jesus but act like it’s up to us to work our way to Heaven.
Why is it so important what we believe about Jesus? Can’t everyone have their own opinion and all still be on the way to Heaven? Jesus didn’t seem to think so. In Matthew Chapter 16: 13-17 we read, “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, Whom do men say that i the Son of man am? 14 And they said, Some say that you are John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15 He said to them, But who do you say that i am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed are you, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it unto thee, but my father which is in heaven. ” It was very important to Jesus that His followers know exactly who He was. Some said He was a prophet, but that was not the answer Jesus sought. He wanted to be sure His followers knew that he was the Son of God. Yet, the whole Mormon theology falls completely apart when the theo-genesis (or beginning) of the very first Mormon god is examined. The fundamental issue is a question of which entity actually came first. Was it the chicken or the egg? If the egg came first, someone had to procreate it, and if the chicken came first, someone, or some deity, had to create it out of nothing for it to procreate an egg. So, if the unalterable requirement for Mormon godhood is mortality, death, and resurrection, there had to have been a spiritual unmoved mover (a term coined anciently by Aristotle) who was not created, but preexisting, such as the biblical God who, as a Spirit, had no beginning and has no end, and is from everlasting to everlasting. So, you see, Mormon theology, when reduced to its empirical parts, cries out for clarity and definition when its basic fundamental premise is unsupported and unsupportable. In the end result, the biblical infinite God of heaven and earth is proven true, and the Mormon exalted man god a bunch of malarkey.
Now, the clincher about the real Mormon regard for Jesus Christ. The Mormon Church actually believes, and maintains, that every mortal man who attains Mormon godhood will eventually become an exalted-man father god. This has been taught in Mormon priesthood meetings since 1851. This was, and is, based upon their stalwart belief in the Adam-God Doctrine which was the theology of Mormonism for over 45 years in the Salt Lake Valley, from 1851 until around 1905. Especially after 1877, after the Adam-God Doctrine was placed into the Mormon temple rite and called the “Lecture before the Veil” by Brigham Young just before the died, the Mormon prophets, up to and including Joseph Fielding Smith, accepted, during their own temple sessions, that Adam was the Mormon heavenly father, and Eve the Mormon heavenly mother, who, together, had procreated all of the spirit children who had lived, and will live, in mortal bodies upon the earth. These Mormon apostles and prophets believed that Adam, their heavenly father, was the resurrected exalted man god who presided over them with Eve, one of his celestial wives, and that, as he, the father god, had produced a son, ‘a’ savior, of sorts, named Jesus, to serve as the appointed Christ of this world, every Mormon man, according to Mormon doctrine, will produce ‘a’ Jesus with probably another name, to serve as a savior for every world that they organize and procreate.