And, finding there was greater happiness and peace and rest for me, I sought for the blessings of the fathers, and the right whereunto I should be ordained to administer the same (Abraham, vs 2)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Godhead

Reread this post: Holy Ghost versus Holy Spirit

I used color coding as followings.
Red: Holy Spirit
Blue: Holy Ghost

I will re-quote the most important scriptures for this post however. The church teaches (currently) the following as the definition of the Godhead.
The Church's first article of faith states, “We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son,Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.” These three beings make up the Godhead.  (Topics: Godhead,
The current defintion in the church is that the Godhead consists of God the Father, The Son, and The Holy Ghost. Three personages.

 The definition continues:
The true doctrine of the Godhead was lost in the apostasy that followed the Savior's mortal ministry and the deaths of His Apostles.
The church's website takes these definitions from "—See True to the Faith (2004), 73-74". If you search recent conference talks they give the same definition. You can look through some here.

Correct Idea of His Character, Perfections and Attributes
I will re-quote Lectures on Faith.
2 Let us here observe, that three things are necessary, in order that any rational and intelligent being may exercise faith in God unto life and salvation.
First, the idea that he [God] actually exists. Secondly, a correct idea of his character, perfections, and attributes. Thirdly, an actual knowledge that the course of life which he is pursuing is according to his will.(Lectures on Faith 3:2–5)
Godhead: How many personages does the Godhead consist of?
Lets see what Joseph said in the Lectures on Faith.
The Father being a personage of spirit, glory and power: possessing all perfection and fulness: The Son, who was in the bosom of the Father, a personage of tabernacle, ... And he being the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, and having overcome, received a fulness of the glory of the Father-possessing the same mind with the Father, which mind is the Holy Spirit, that bears record of the Father and the Son, and these three are one, or in other words, these three constitute the great, matchless, governing and supreme power over all things: by whom all things were created and made, that were created and made: and these three constitute the Godhead, and are one: (Lectures on Faith, Lecture 5:2)
The Father is a personage of spirit
The Son is a personae of spirit.
The Holy Spirit is the mind of God.

These three make up the Godhead according to the Lectures on Faith.

The Holy Ghost is a personage of spirit. (D&C 130:22)

Sermon In The GroveJoseph Smith gave this lecture. A Meeting in the Grove, east of the Temple, June 16, 1844
History of the Church 6:473-479; Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 369-376 or a link here
I have always declared God to be a distinct personage, Jesus Christ a separate and distinct personage from God the Father, and the Holy Ghost was a distinct personage and a Spirit: and these three constitute three distinct personages and three Gods. If this is in accordance with the New Testament, lo and behold! we have three Gods anyhow, and they are plural; and who can contradict it? (Sermon in the Grove, paragraph 5)
So here we have Joseph declaring these three constitute THREE God's. Holy Ghost, The Son, and The Father. Three distinct Personages.

The Confusion: How many personages are in the Godhead?
Beginning of Lecture 5.
 We shall, in this lecture speak of the Godhead: we mean the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (Lecture 5)
The end of the Lecture 5.
Q. How many personages are there in the Godhead?Q. Two: the Father and the Son. (5:1.)Q. How do you prove that there are two personages in the Godhead?A. By the Scriptures. Gen. 1:26. Also (2:6.) And the Lord God said unto the Only Begotten, who was with him from the beginning, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:--and it was done. Gen. 3:22. And the Lord God said unto the Only Begotten, Behold, the man is become as one of us: to know good and evil. John, 17:5. And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. (5:12.) 
So here is the confusion. Why did Joesph Smith in the Lectures on Faith which was voted in as doctrine for the church state the Godhead is ONLY TWO Personages? Why do we teach it has three today? Why is the Holy Spirit NOT a personage? Why is the Holy Ghost A PERSONAGE of spirit? How can they be the same if one is a personage and one is not? Why did Joseph say he ALWAYS taught the Holy Ghost to be a personage of spirit yet teach here the Godhead had only two personage of spirit? Perhaps we have mixed up the meaning of the words Godhead and Holy Spirit and the Holy Ghost? Perhaps we take to lightly the revelations of God revealed to us through Joseph Smith? Perhaps we have taken some of the very false beliefs from the doctrine of the trinity and continue to teach them today?

No wonder why the seriousness of  removing the Lectures on Faith from our cannon (Which were the Doctrine for the Church, The current D&C only contains the covenants portion). See my post (Changing The Commandments of God: Lectures on Faith) where I discuss how they were removed and why they were removed. One being, Joseph Fielding Smith, believed it taught an incorrect idea of the Godhead.

Changing The Commandments of God: Lectures on Faith
One or the other is true because they disagree on the definition of God. And you must have a correct idea of His character, perfection and attributes in order to exercise faith in Him. And so now we find ourselves having to choose. 

Abinadi's Discourse on the Godhead
Interesting how out of all the things to testify against the King, Abinadi taught about the Godhead.

Go read Mosiah 15

Further Study
This is long enough. So the next few items are just for those who want further study in this matter.

The Holy Spirit is described in D&C 88
11 And the light which shineth, which giveth you light, is through him who enlighteneth your eyes, which is the same light that quickeneth your understandings;
12 Which light proceedeth forth from the presence of God to fill the immensity of space—
13 The light which is in all things, which giveth life to all things, which is the law by which all things are governed, even the power of God who sitteth upon his throne, who is in the bosom of eternity, who is in the midst of all things. (D&C 88:11-13)
The Holy Spirit is also described in D&C 84
44 For you shall live by every word that proceedeth forth from the mouth of God.
45 For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
46 And the Spirit giveth light to every man that cometh into the world; and the Spirit enlighteneth every man through the world, that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit.
47 And every one that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit cometh unto God, even the Father. (D&C 84:44-47)
The Lectures on Faith further clarified the Holy Spirit in the lecture quoted above.
We shall in this lecture speak of the Godhead; we mean the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. There are two personages who constitute the great, matchless, governing, and supreme power over all things - by whom all things were created and made that are created and made, whether visible or invisible; whether in heaven, on earth, or in the earth, under the earth, or throughout the immensity of space. They are the Father and the Son: (Lecture 5)
Evidence of Things Not Seen: The Invisble
I would like to point out a specific definition they have included here. "by whom all things were created and made that are created and made, whether visible or invisible" If you look at many of the scriptures the lectures use to illustrate these points they make an interesting comparison. See the verse below.
11 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1)
Many think this means you have faith of things "not seen" because you have not seen it. But here in the lectures they don't use that definition. They instead use the word not seen to mean the invisible. Not because you haven't seen it but you have done as Joseph told us to do. Gaze into heaven 5 minutes and you will know more than all the books written about the subject. They have seen angels, so they have evidence of things not seen (invisble). They have a fellowship with the divine so piece by piece, grace by grace, they gain a greater evidence of things not seen (invisible) until their faith becomes knowledge and they cannot be kept from within the veil of unbelief.

Holy Ghost State of Probation
Joseph also said that the Holy Ghost is now in a state of probation which if he should perform in righteousness, he may pass through the same or similar course of things that the Son has.
The Holy Ghost is now in a state of probation which if he should perform in righteousness he may pass through the same or a similar course of things that the Son has. (Joseph Smith, The Words of Joseph Smith, p. 245; Sabbath address, Nauvoo, 27 August 1843. Reported by Franklin D. Richards.)
Some more thought can be found in John 17.

Interesting scriptures to also ponder.

Kingdoms of Glory
76:86 These are they who receive not of his fulness in the eternal world, but of the Holy Spirit through the ministration of the terrestrial;87 And the terrestrial through the ministration of the celestial.88 And also the telestial receive it of the administering of angels who are appointed to minister for them, or who are appointed to be ministering spirits for them; for they shall be heirs of salvation. (D&C 76:86-88)
Interesting three verses if you take time to think about them.

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