From the Mailbag (10/24/2011)

Thank you for taking the time to document exactly what it is Mormons believe verses the Bible. I am married to a Mormon. I am a Christian and stand firm by the tenets of the Faith exactly as you have listed them. What seems clear to me is like talking to someone from a foreign country. As you know they think we came from Heaven. He recently asked me where I came from and I was not able to give him a solid biblical answer. What do you suggest?

Hi Millie,

Thank you for your kind and encouraging words for the work we do here at Mormonism Research Ministry. I’m so glad you have found it helpful.

I’ll try to address your question. The Bible tells us that we were created by God for His sovereign purpose. God creates our physical bodies, and He creates our spirits as well.

Psalm 139:13-16 talks about God forming our “inward parts,” knitting our bodies together in our mother’s womb. Here we learn that God knew us–knew who He would create us, individually, to be, knew our birth dates and death dates — before He had yet made us.

Zechariah 12:1 tells us that God “formed the spirit of man within him.” That is, God creates the spirit and places it in the physical body that He has already created. (See 1 Corinthians 15:46 that says the natural [in this context we could say physical] precedes the spiritual.)

Isaiah 42:5 says that God created the heavens and the earth, and gives breath and life to the people who inhabit it.

Romans 4:17 says that God is the giver of life and “calls into existence the things that do not exist.” (See also Romans 11:36, Hebrews 11:3, Colossians 1:16 and Acts 17:24-25 which all reiterate that all things are created by God and He gives life and breath to mankind.)

The problem many Latter-day Saints have in understanding these biblical teachings is that they start with the premise that God did not/could not create the spirit of man. Joseph Smith taught, “The mind or the intelligence which man possesses is coequal with God himself…God never had the power to create the spirit of man at all…The first principles of man are self-existent with God. God himself, finding he was in the midst of spirits and glory, because he was more intelligent, saw proper to institute laws whereby the rest could have a privilege to advance like himself.” (King Follett Discourse, Journal of Discourses 6:6-7)

But the Bible teaches (and Christianity affirms) that God and mankind are not the same sort of beings. God is Creator, eternally self-existent, in need of nothing (Acts 17: 24-25, Psalm 90:2, John 1:1-5); man is created by God and helpless without Him (Psalm 100:3, Colossians 1:17). God is the source of all life; man is dependent on God for the life he has. Until God creates us, we do not exist anywhere (except in the mind of God, who knows all things).

So, the biblical answer to “Where did we come from?” is this: we came from God, the source of all life, who created us, body and spirit. As David so beautifully put it, “You formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:13-14)

I hope this will help. For greater understanding of the way Latter-day Saints defend the LDS doctrine of the preexistence and argue against the Christian position, you might find this article on the MRM website helpful:

For questions on the Mormon use of biblical proof-texts, check out the sections in the above article titled “Biblical Considerations” and “Additional Biblical Evidence.”

Thanks again for your email, Millie. Please let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything more I can help you with. May the Lord shower His tender mercies upon you and your husband.

Leaning on Jesus,


About Sharon Lindbloom

Sharon surrendered her life to the Lord Jesus Christ in 1979. Deeply passionate about Truth, Sharon loves serving as a full-time volunteer research associate with Mormonism Research Ministry. Sharon and her husband live in Minnesota.
This entry was posted in Nature of God, Nature of Man and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

114 Responses to From the Mailbag (10/24/2011)

  1. Brian says:


    Thanks so much for sharing your story with us. It sounds like a long, treacherous road you have been down. God bless you and your wife.

    Sola Deo Gloria

  2. Mike R says:

    Kate, thanks for the kind words. You and all the former Mormons that post here on MRM
    have inspired me . I ‘ve learned a lot from all of you. My love for the Mormon people was
    enhanced to a large extent by my wife, she was once a member of a autocratic religious
    organization with authoritative claims virtually the same as Mormonism. The Lord led her
    out and to a personal one on one relationship with Jesus. She taught me to love those who
    follow false prophets, they are people for whom Jesus died. A big reason why I support MRM
    is that they treat the Mormon people as decent people. Bill, Eric, Sharon and Aaron all
    have my respect . I’m glad you’re here.

  3. Mike R says:

    TjayT, it does’nt surprise me that there are many Mormon apologetic sites ( I’m well aware
    of them) , it also does’nt surprise me that you as a Mormon would be all to eager to try and
    direct people to them, what does surprise me is that since these colleagues of yours are not
    those who claim the authority to be official spokesmen for the Mormon Church , why then
    even bother directing people their way ? I always try and quote Mormon prophets and apostles,
    or Church curriculum , yet I find that to many Mormons are getting their beliefs from BYU
    professors and such . I found your reasoning on “gathering information” rather strange as you
    seem to be looking anywhere and everywhere for some hidden bit of truth that could add to
    your knowledge quantitatively . Reading books by Atheists ? Why? Do you claim to be a
    Christian? If so then what does the Bible say about Atheism ? A person can end up in the
    unfortunate situation of gaining vast amounts of religious knowlege and yet miss the simple
    powerful message of the Bible, and the New Testament in particular —Jn 5:39-40; 2Tim 3:7.
    Jesus invites us to come to Him to be reconciled to God , it happens in the moment when
    we surrender to Him . Listen to what an authentic apostle writes about this truth:
    1Jn.5:10-12,20. Does it sound like he is looking for new truths , gathering vast amounts of
    information that will give him eternal life ? As a Mormon you are offering us a system of rules,
    laws and numerous requirements which can make us “worthy” to become Almighty Gods and be
    worshiped as such. No thanks.

  4. Rick B says:

    Spartacus said to you

    The Christians here know it is their duty to correct their fellow Christians as well, if an important and clearly understandable issue arises.

    This happened here to me, I said something, I knew what I meant, but it was worded wrong and sounded different than what I meant. A brother here corrected me and I said, Yep I was wrong, sorry. I never said, Woah, your tearing me down by telling me I was wrong, you cannot do that. Also I notice you have not replied back, are you even still around?

  5. TJayT says:

    Mike R,

    I’m as eager to direct people to apologetic sites as I am to direct them to MRM, to UTLM, to, or any number of other sites to get information. Someone that’s looking for answers should look at all the information available, weigh it themselves and then make there decisions. I don’t spend much time looking at FAIR, but they have a viewpoint and I’m willing to listen to anyone’s beliefs and ideas. I may not always agree with them but I’m willing to weigh them in my mind and then make my own judgments.

    Your arguments against reading and learning all the information I can about alternate viewpoints reminds me a bit of what far to many Lds say. “Don’t read that @n+!-mormon garbage! Just blindly follow the lesson manual on Sunday, read the Ensign and buy all your reading material from Deseret Books. There the only people that know anything anyway.” I’ve never made a secret of the fact that I’m here to learn alternate viewpoints to my faith, and I feel every single Mormon should do the same. I’m also not going to lie and say the Evangelical Christian viewpoint is the only one I study. There are many other’s out there with there own views, and I don’t see a problem with hearing and learning everything that I can. (Cont)

  6. TJayT says:

    (cont) I most definitely claim to be a Christian. For a good third of my life I was most certainly NOT a Christian and openly preached against Christ. The bible has something very important to say about Atheism. Most notably it teaches that they are dead wrong. The is a God, he loves us, he sent his only begotten son to save us. But Atheists have there viewpoints and if there any good I want to hear them. If Christianity is true then it can stand against all that will come against it. And testing my faith and ideas about God has lead me to a deeper understanding, respect and love for God then I have ever had before.

    I do see where you’re coming from with your warnings about gaining knowledge and missing Christ all together. Like I said before I spent a great chunk of my life following the “Philosophies of Men”, thinking myself smarter then any silly Christian. It’s a trap that’s easy to fall into, and I pray that I never do it again. We should never miss that Jesus it the answer.

    And a side note: Happy Thanksgiving to all my new friends here 🙂

  7. Mike R says:

    TjayT, I’m all for reading about other view points also, but it seemed to me that you were
    saying that you’re looking for answers in respect to spiritual truth, ultimately the truth of
    eternal life etc. I found that odd reasoning given the fact that you’re a member of a church
    that claims it alone is the one true church where salvation is found ( according to a popular
    Mormon General Authority) , so given that claim I found your statements rather puzzling .
    I’m glad you see the value of testing spiritual truths with the Bible , if Mormonism is really
    Jesus’ church then that is the place to start. So please remember this when you try to defend
    Mormon doctrine. Thanks .Happy Thanksgiving to you as well.

  8. Kate says:

    “Like I said before I spent a great chunk of my life following the “Philosophies of Men”, thinking myself smarter then any silly Christian. It’s a trap that’s easy to fall into, and I pray that I never do it again.”

    On guard my friend 🙂 I love reading your posts. This one really got me though because this is one reason I left the LDS church. I was following the “Philosophies of Men”, thinking myself smarter than any silly Christian. The man to god doctrine is a philosophy of men, the temple rites of the temple are a philosophy of men, the Book of Abraham is a philosophy of men, not to even mention all the philosophies of Brigham Young that the LDS throw under the bus and by doing so, are saying Brigham Young was a false prophet. No amount of twisting, spinning, or mental gymnastics can erase what he taught as truth and words from God. What he said DOES count. Like it or not. Just like what every prophet from Joseph Smith to Thomas Monson has taught. Why believe one word Thomas Monson says, if in 50 years it’s all just his opinion?

    I’m glad that you study. I think it’s great that you direct people to sites like MRM and UTLM, I’m wondering how that’s working out though. No Mormon I know would come here. I have only studied Mormonism and Christianity. I’m not really interested in what an Atheist believes. I believe that I have the truth from the Bible. We are to test everything against it.

    Wishing you and all those here a very Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂

  9. fproy2222 says:

    There is a difference between the Creeds created by man and the teachings of God through His Prophets.


  10. Mike R says:

    There is a difference between the Creed created by a Mormon prophet [ Articles of Faith] ,
    and the teachings of subsequent Mormon prophets and apostles.

  11. Rick B says:

    Fred I have told you and asked you before, Why do you post? Your posts are nothing more than ramblings that both make no sense, and offer no help, or answers.

    You could have told us what some of these creeds are by men, and gave us some of these creeds that you claim are from prophets, but you did not.

    Honestly I suspect you really bring nothing to the table for two reasons. 1. Is you cannot, so you dont.
    2. If you were able too we would give examples of how your wrong and how these prophets you speak of are nothing more than false prophets created in the Mind of Joseph Smith.

  12. TJayT says:


    Good to hear from you again J. I’m glad you enjoy reading my posts. Most of the time I feel like an inarticulate and bumbling fool trying to get my ideas across.

    You brought up Exaltation, Temple Rites, BoA and Mormons “Crazy Uncle” Brigham. As you know I won’t really be talking much about Temple Rites and I think the BoA hard to hit without a lot of multiple posts. I’ll try for Exaltation and BY right now.

    Deification has a long history in Christianity, just ask any Orthodox Christian. I’m not going to lie and say Mormon Exaltation is the same. For one they don’t believe in a preexistence, and from my readings they don’t believe we’ll become “rulers of our own worlds”, though I also don’t think they have much doctoring on what they will do after the resurrection. But Human to god doctrine is Christian.

    Info on Theosis:
    Info on the differences between Theosis and Exaltation:

    I agree with 95-98% of what I have read and heard from/about BY. He was a prophet of God, but he let himself get in the way of things. He never pretended to try and distinguish between what he thought and what God really wanted, especially near the end of his life. Many members of the Q12 said as much after his death, but seem to have been afraid to say so during his life thanks to the Succession Crisis that was still fresh in everyone’s mind. In the end I see BY in the same light as I see Jonah. He was a prophet of God but kept trying to do his own thing, and in the end was still trying to bring his human inclinations into his prophesies and I’m sure looked like a false prophet to those in Nineveh. (Cont)

  13. TJayT says:

    (Cont) Directing people that don’t know much about Lds doctrine to MRM has been fine enough (though I do direct them to other sites too). I don’t really talk theology with other Mormons so I haven’t been able to direct any of them this way. You do know at least one Mormon that would come here if you count me (not that I’m worth much ;)). You said you’ve only studied Mormonism and Christianity. Just curious, have you studied Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity also, or have you stuck to Evangelical Christianity?

  14. Kate says:

    I have looked into Catholicism and my son is dating a Catholic girl. I also have a sister in law who is Catholic. They have a lot of rules and rituals (like Mormonism) that are nowhere to be found in the Bible. I know most Christians on this board are Evangelicals. I consider myself a non denominational Christian who follows Christ and God’s Word ( Bible) I am only interested in what the Bible tells me. That’s all I can do right now. I don’t trust any organized religion because of my experience in Mormonism. I guess you could say that I’ve been in recovery 🙂

  15. Kate says:

    I clicked on the link of Orthodox Christianity and I didn’t have to read very far to see that you are misinterpreting that. What I got out of it is that we will become holy, without sin because of what Jesus did for us on the Cross. It stated that Theosis is not to be confused with Apotheosis. What is the definition of Apotheosis?
    Apotheosis. The assimilation of a man to a god.

    The article said:
    The statement by St. Athanasius of Alexandria, “The Son of God became man, that we might become god”, [the second g is always lowercase since man can never become a God] indicates the concept beautifully. II Peter 1:4 says that we have become ” . . . partakers of divine nature.” Athanasius amplifies the meaning of this verse when he says theosis is “becoming by GRACE what God is by nature” (De Incarnatione, I). What would otherwise seem absurd, that fallen, sinful man may become holy as God is holy, has been made possible through Jesus Christ, who is God incarnate. Naturally, the crucial Christian assertion, that God is One, sets an absolute limit on the meaning of theosis – it is not possible for any created being to become, ontologically, God or even another god.
    This article goes against Mormonism. It also shows just how different Orthodox Christianity is from Mormonism. It says that Jesus is God incarnate. Which is true, but Mormons say is a lie.

    It also said:
    “Of all the Mormon doctrines including polygamy, critics generally deem this doctrine the most offensive or even blasphemous.”

    It is blasphemous. It is by God’s GRACE that we become holy like him. We do not literally become a God like him.

  16. Mike R says:

    Kate, you’re spot on with your assessment of this Mormon doctrine , it is blasphemous.
    Just look at the “amenities” that come with this particular Mormon doctrine that you’d be
    missing as a woman : You’ll be called a Goddess and watch your husband create worlds and
    people them with children from you and the harem of women you share Him with. This role
    of yours will keep you busy , so busy that once your myriads of children have been sent off
    to an earth to began their ” mortal probation “you’ll not be allowed to communicate with them
    as your husband does, since prayer to Heavenly Mother will be deemed improper by the
    leader of your children on earth the one they called your husband’s mouthpiece, the prophet.
    So I guess this Godhood doctrine that Mormon males hope to attain to some day is rather
    appealing, that is if you’re a man . How sad that men who claim to be directed personally by
    Jesus to direct His church could drift so far off course from what Jesus’ directed His true
    apostles to teach in the New Testament . But then there are true apostles and false ones—
    Rev 2:2 . May the Mormon people escape the submission to their prophets that you have been
    able to accomplish . You’re free in Jesus —Heb 7:25

  17. Kate says:

    When you lay it all out like that the absurdity of it is almost comical. I know that sounds harsh but it’s true. I wonder if Mormons ever think all the way through it. I’ll bet the men do, but what about the women? If this were true, women would be getting the short end of the stick. The VERY short end. As a mother, I can’t imagine not being allowed to have communication with my children. I was told by my bishop once that we don’t pray to or address our heavenly mother because she is so sacred that God was protecting her. What??!!! Honestly, how could we pray to our heavenly mother? With so many women up there having spirit babies, how would we know who to pray to? We would all have different mothers???? I have a friend who’s parents left Mormonism 35 years ago, her dad says that women in Mormonism are nothing but brood mares. I think maybe he is right. I know God has more than that planned for me. I also believe Jesus when he said that there will be no marriage in Heaven, but we will be as the Angels in Heaven. The Mormon system doesn’t fit with what Jesus taught. Yes, I am free in Jesus!!

  18. Mike R says:

    Kate, I agree with you that most Mormons , especially women, don’t think this doctrine
    through, they just “follow the prophet” , and accept his counsel as the revealed will of God.
    It’s rather ridiculous to think that Mormons are counseled to thank their early mothers for
    their love and help, and also it is declared proper christian behavior to express your gratitude
    to Heavenly Father by telling Him in prayer that you are thankful for His care etc. Yet this
    normal family value is deemed improper behavior towards your Heavenly Mother. So as a
    Goddess you’d be relegated to a unfortunate role in heaven . You mentioned “brood mares” ;
    being raised on a horse ranch ( still live on part of it ) I found that term interesting as that
    could very well be the lot of many Mormon women in heaven, one stallion and his brood mares .
    You’re right about heaven. God has a absolutely incredible experiences for us in heaven, some-
    thing that far outweighs marriage . Being worshiped in heaven as Almighty Gods and Goddesses
    sounds more like Greek mythology than the gospel that Jesus gave His apostles to spread to the
    world , the gospel that centers in Him , our worship of Him our admiration of Him . I hope that
    multitudes of Mormons ( especially women ) will walk away from their apostles and allow Jesus
    to free them unto a right relationship with God. There’s a great ministry site designed for
    Mormon women but I can’t recall it’s name right now. God bless you and the ex-Mormons who
    post here.

  19. Rick B says:

    People like TJayT prove the bible is Correct.
    TY claims he has done as his research, looked at all the facts and figures, listens and reads every side, LDS, Atheist, you name it. Then after all the research and despite the sever lack of proof and even people like Johnny and ex-mormons like Kate TJ claims, yep the BoM truly is what it claims to be.

    This simply proves the Bible to be true when it say people loved darkness rather than light, and people simply want their itching ears tickled and that wolves and false prophets have arisen and decived the people.

  20. TJayT says:


    Forgive me if I didn’t come across very clearly. I made sure to put up the links so that you would know that Mormon Exaltation and Eastern Theosis aren’t the same thing. I agree with you that they don’t belive we can become a God, or even a god in the sense of creating worlds and the like. Let me quote the words of Archimandrite George, Abbot of Holy St. Gregorios Monastery, “Our Life’s purpose is declared in the first chapter of the Holy Bible, when the Holy author tells us that God created man “in His image and likeness.” From this we discover the great love the Triune God has for man: He does not wish him simply to be a being with certain gifts, certain Qualities, a certain superiority over the rest of creation, He wishes him to be a god by Grace… Having been endowed “in His image,“ man is called upon to be completed “in His likeness.“ This is Theosis. The Creator, God by nature, calls man to become a god by Grace. The charismata that forms us ‘in His image” were given to man by God in order that he may reach very high; so that through them he may attain a likeness to his God and Creator; so that he may have not only an external, moral relationship, but a personal union with his Creator…”(cont)

  21. TJayT says:

    (Cont)”Unfortunatley, ignorance not only exists in people outside the Church, but also in many within the Church, because they assume that the purpose of our life is, at best, simply moral improvement to become better men; when we are told by the Gospel, by the Tradition of the Church, and by the holy Fathers, that the purpose of our life is not just that man should become better than he is, more moral, more just, more self-controlled, more mindful; all these must happen, but none of them are the great purpose, the ultimate purpose for which our Maker and Creator moulded man. What is this purpose? Theosis – for man to be united with God, not in an external or a sentimental manner but ontologically, in a real way. Man is placed so hight in Orthodox anthropology that if we compare that with the anthropologies of all the philosophies or social and psychological systems we will bery easily find out how poor these are, how little they correspond to man’s great yearning for something very great and true in his life.”

    You can download his whole book. When I read this I see Theosis going beyond simply becoming Holy, without sin. It’s the idea that men can become as close to God as is possible, sharing in his whole energy. Mormons shares that idea, that we can become as close to the Godhead as is possible. But since Mormons believe in an anthropomorphic God that isn’t separate from creation and reject the Creator/creature dichotomy it’s felt we can share even more with God.

    Rick B,

    Wow… so many facetious responses came to mind. But I’ll keep it classy and just thank you for saying I help prove the Bible correct. Least I can do to spread the Light of Christ!

  22. Rick B says:

    I know you dont agree with me, so please feel free to tell me/us what the truth is in Mormonism that proves JS is a true prophet and you are following a true prophet?

    Look at the newest topic, tell us where we are wrong? Give me solid evidence, not a testimony. where is the archaeological evidence? why do mormon prophets keep changing their tune? Need I do on?

  23. grindael says:

    Mormon “theosis” is not Christian “theosis”, for it is based on a false premise, that men are ontologically the same as God. None of the Early Church Father’s ever taught such nonsense, and many Mormons love to cherry pick their writings to try and prove this. Theosis is simply taking on the nature of God, by being born of the Spirit. Trying to tie the heresy of Joseph Smith that God is a man, (and that somehow that makes us “closer” to God), is ridiculous and ripe for further heresy, as Brigham Young proved by trying to bring the Mormon God even closer to them, by proclaiming his “revelation” that he was Adam.

    Saying that “Mormons believe in an anthropomorphic God that isn’t separate from creation and reject the Creator/creature dichotomy it’s felt we can share even more with God.” takes away form the very incarnation of God, and that he loved His creation so much, that became one of us and died to redeem us. This fact alone, dispels the false assumption that God is “separate” from his creation, for how can we be, after taking on the divine nature. Mormons want to do this through law, while Christians become gods through regeneration of our spirits by grace. (Thank you John Chrysostom) Athanasius tells us, that deification

    “is granted by grace, not by making part of the divine essence. “It is clear that he called men gods being deified by his grace and not born of his substance. For he justified, who is just of himself and not from another, and he deifies, who is god of himself and not by participation in another. … If we have been made sons of god, we have been made gods; but this is by grace of adoption

  24. grindael says:

    and not the nature of our begetter” (en. Ps. 49.1.2).

    God as a spiritual being, who we can take on the very divine nature of, through regeneration of the Holy Spirit, brought about by His very sacrifice for the sins of his creation, and this has been the message since the beginning.

    It has not been an assembly line of gods that have been churning out spirit babies since the first Mormon god was formed out of universal elements, somehow subjecting himself to the laws of the universe, mastering them, and making more of himself by somehow creating a female counterpart, and having that counterpart give spiritual bodies to raw intelligencies (whatever that is). Light and truth? (Simply Smith’s rip-off of Emanuel Swedenborg). As Ireneus wrote in Against Heresies, (condemning the thought of other gods outside the pleroma (fullness) or the Trinity:

    “For how can there be any other Fulness, or Principle, or Power, or God, above Him, since it is matter of necessity that God, the Pleroma (Fulness) of all these, should contain all things in His immensity, and should be contained by no one? But if there is anything beyond Him, He is not then the Pleroma of all, nor does He contain all. For that which they declare to be beyond Him will be wanting to the Pleroma, or, [in other words,] to that God who is above all things. But that which is wanting, and falls in any way short, is not the Pleroma of all things. In such a case, He would have both beginning, middle, and end, with respect to those who are beyond Him. And if He has an end in regard to those things which are below, He has also a beginning with respect to those things which are above.

    These, again, and

  25. grindael says:

    others which are above and below, will have their beginnings at certain other points, and so on ad infinitum; so that their thoughts would never rest in one God, but, in consequence of seeking after more than exists, would wander away to that which has no existence, and depart from the true God.” (Against Heresies, II:1-5)

    Mormon theology has never been consistent, and has gone thorough radical changes since Smith wrote the Book of Mormon.

    “According to Aquinas, the Son is the Eternal Wisdom and “man is perfected in wisdom (which is his proper perfection, as he is rational) by participating [in] the Word of God” (ST III, q. 3. a. 8 ) and that the reason for the Incarnation is for:

    “the full participation of the Divinity, which is the true bliss of man and end of human life; and this is bestowed upon us by Christ’s humanity; for Augustine says in a sermon (xiii de Temp): ‘God was made man, that man might be made god’ ” (ST III, q. 1 a. 2).

    There can be no ascent of man unless God descends first. God is infinitely above man and man by his power cannot form a friendship with Him because of his sin.

    Throughout history, however, there was a type of relationship between God and man. This was expressed in a contract or a covenant. God made promises to a particular group of people and this particular group made their own promises. Because of man’s weaknesses he could not keep up with his promises. But God is not only infinitely above but also infinitely near. His love for man is infinite because He is infinite love. Where man goes He wants to go even if it means becoming weak like him, or even going to the dead with him. Because of

  26. grindael says:

    His infinite love for us,

    “he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:7-8).

    The very act of the Incarnation shows what kind of God He is. The Jews have always thought of Him as the Creator of the universe, the One who created the universe out of nothing. He was the great I AM, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The Incarnation gives us a greater picture of who God is. In fact, it gives us more than a picture; it gives us a human face.

    The Incarnation shows that God is a kenotic being, a self-emptying being. But how can God empty Himself without becoming a non-God? It must not be a type of emptying which makes Himself to be a non-God, but a different kind. Thanks to revelation and human experience, there is one kind of self-emptying which is rich in value and that which does not destroy the essence but rather fulfills it or perfects it.

    And that is love. Love is a total self-giving of one’s self to another. We know from revelation that God is love and that He consists in three divine Persons: Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Father, the principle without a principle, is the source of origin for both the Son and the Spirit. The Father knows and loves Himself and this generates the Son and the Holy Spirit. He knows Himself and this gives Him an Idea of Himself, which is the Son. The Father knows the Son and loves Him. The Son in turn knows and loves the Father. The love between the Father and the Son generates another Person, who is the Holy Spirit.

  27. grindael says:

    This does not mean that the Father creates the Son and the Holy Spirit. Because the Father is an eternal Father and this means that His identity necessarily consists of a relationship. So too with the Son. Because the Son is eternal, this means that His identity consists of a relationship. This in turn means that this is an eternal relationship, an eternal self-giving of each other, loving each other in the fullest sense. And that is why the Holy Spirit, the communion between the Father and the Son, is also eternal. The Incarnation, then, reveals the Trinity to us; it reveals to us who God really is.” (Apolonio Latar)

    If one wants to explain Mormon “theosis”, one must also explain the way that it was conceived by Mormon “prophets”. From Trinity, to Modalism, to polytheism, to Adam-god… I am baffled that anyone studying Mormonism, or any who believe it, could ever get close to such an ever changing concept, that is so obviously an invention of men, and so far from what was taught by Jesus, his Apostles, and the Early Church Fathers. _johnny

  28. Kate says:

    I’m confused. Why use Christian Theosis as an example if it is so different from what Mormonism teaches? All I see here is the same old Mormon way of taking something Christian and spinning, twisting, mental gymnastics and adding to, to make it fit the teachings of Mormonism and to say “See! Man becoming God is Christian!” The same thing is done with baptism for the dead, faith without works is dead is another Mormon thing that comes to mind. Yes Christians do good works why? Because God laid them out beforehand that we may walk in them, and to show our faith in Jesus, because having faith in Him and not showing His love through our works, does make our faith dead. Mormons use this one verse (out of context I might add) but completely ignore verses like Ephesians 2:8, 9; Romans 3:20, 28 and Galatians 2:16. The article you posted on Orthodox Christianity does indeed explain Christian Theosis, but you are trying to make is mean something it doesn’t.

    “The Creator, God by nature, calls man to become a god by Grace.”

    I’m sure this is the part that jumps out at Mormons. Forget the rest of it.
    This does not mean that man becomes God the way God is God (the way Mormonism teaches). This means that by his GRACE we are made holy, because of what Jesus did on the Cross for us. We aren’t born children of God. We are adopted through our faith and acceptance of Jesus. We become a new creature in Him when we are born again of the Spirit.

    Thank you for your posts. I had gotten the concept of Christian Theosis from the link TJayT posted, but this helped me understand it more fully. Awesome!

  29. Mike R says:

    Kate, you said to TJay T : ” All I see here is the same old Mormon way of taking something
    Christian and spinning, twisting mental gymnastics and adding to , to make it fit the teachings
    of Mormonism. ….”

    I think what you said summs up Mormonism perfectly. If you could spot counterfeit money
    as easily as you identify counterfeit gospels and counterfeit prophets , you would be in big
    demand by banks ! I just love how you minister to those like TJayT who try and sell you
    a gospel that you’ve already come to see as counterfeit . This term of ” theosis” is hi-jacked
    by Mormon apologists to try and snow people into thinking Mormon prophets and apostles
    got it right with their teachings on God and man . As we discussed earlier concerning Mormon
    women, this doctrine of their husbands becoming Gods has a lot more to it that is’nt readily
    admitted to by Mormons who seek to use “theosis” as a defense of their doctrine of eternal
    progression. Consider Zina Young , plural wife of Brigham Young, who proclaimed in a mass
    meeting of Mormon women: ” The principle of plural marriage is honorable . It is a principle
    of the gods,it is heaven born. God revealed it to us as a saving principle, we have accepted it as
    such….” [ Mormon Polygamy, p 101 ]. That was how she publically submitted to her husband’s
    gospel . ( a “saving principle” ? what kind of N.T. gospel is that anyway ? ) . Mormon women
    were probably not over joyed with this ” gospel ” . Jesus’ true gospel has nothing to do
    with the Mormon Godhood gospel .

  30. Rick B says:

    TJayT said

    Rick B,

    Wow… so many facetious responses came to mind.

    It really is sad TJ that your so quick with a response when it comes to something as, I am wrong, yet no reply as of yet for evidence to what say mormonism is true? Or no response yet by any mormon on the false prophecies of JS. Why is that? I know, you dont have any answers. This goes back to my question in days past, Where is the Love of Christ in Mormonism? I dont see it because Mormons never seem to have answers, only questions and can say, were wrong, but never offer any hope or love.

  31. TJayT says:

    Rick B,

    My response to you was because I felt your comment more a personal attack then any true attempt at dialog. Your insinuation was that if I have chosen to read and study the arguments against my faith (and Christianity in general) and haven’t come to the same conclusions as you then I’m a deluded fool that honestly prefers lies to truth. That’s an opinion smacking of arrogance and condescension Imo. It puts the entire world into three groups: Those that haven’t heard the arguments, those that have and got them right and the simpletons that heard them and got it wrong. To me this is a very simplistic view that doesn’t take into account the ability for people to look at the same piece of information and all come away with different and equally valid conclusions. I know that many Mormons are guilty of this view as well, but that doesn’t make it right. So instead of making a facieses comment against you I chose to instead make a different remark. In hindsight I most likely shouldn’t have gotten offended and turned the other cheek, so for that I’m sorry.

    I’m not here to try and convince anyone but myself about anything in Mormonism. To try otherwise would be foolish. Anyone that comes to a forum like this expecting to change the minds of those in the majority are crazy. That’s a job for missionaries and apologists, of which I claim to be neither. If for some reason someone asks me about my beliefs and honestly seems like they would like a discussion then I’m more then willing to (as Kate my VFP should know), but otherwise I try to only ask questions to clarify someone’s stance on a doctrine or to understand why they think like they do. (Cont)

  32. TJayT says:

    And that ties into why I haven’t made any post in newest topic. Your original post there told me that you really don’t want to hear a Mormons view on the matter. Any answers I have would be insufficient for you, which is fine but doesn’t really give me a reason to say them. It’s the same as a non-christian bringing up there feelings that many of Christ’s prophesizes didn’t come true. You could lay out all the well thought out and articulate arguments that you want, but they would still just smile and pat you on the head saying “silly Christian, you just don’t get it”. I also don’t get why people keep assuming I’m going to start spouting off my testimony here. We all have a testimony of our beliefs. That’s great personally, but sharing them with others that have an equally strong and counter belief isn’t going to do any good or get us anywhere.


    Falcon spoke highly of you to me in another thread, and so far your posts haven’t disappointed. Do you prefer I call you Grindael or Johnny?

    When you say “Theosis is simply taking on the nature of God, by being born of the Spirit.” are you speaking of Greek Orthodox Theosis? Because if you are then you have really oversimplified the concept. To say that about the Greek’s view would be like saying building a skyscraper is simply a bunch of guys with hammers putting things together. Sure that’s a part of it, but there’s a lot more to building then that. In the same way being born of the spirit is only part of the process of Theosis. They must be baptized and partake of the Holy Eucharist, as well as participate in the other sacraments of the church. (Cont)

  33. TJayT says:

    Also a person can fall off the path of Theosis and lose salvation even after they have started on it, and must always be working toward synergy or they can still “miss the mark”. Theosis to them is also not a static thing, but something that will be progressed in for eternity. To me this sounds like there’s a lot more work then just being born of the Spirit.

    Why is it that you feel the idea of an anthropomorphic God takes away from Christ’s sacrifice for us? In either model God loved us so much that he sent his only begotten son to die for and redeem us. If Christ was created or uncreated, if God has or doesn’t have a body doesn’t change that fact. You also say that Mormons want to achieve deification through the law, but my readings of synergy sound just like what I believe. Both say deification can only come through Christ’s Grace, but both also say that human acceptance and rejection of such grace is always a real possibility, and salvation can be voided by acts of unrighteousness and faithlessness.

    I agree with you that the idea of infinite regression is silly. I personally don’t subscribe to it. Also agree that God is infinitely above man, and always will be even after Exaltation. We’ll never be his equal, simply strive to be more like him forever and ever.


    I used the idea because even though Greek Theosis and Mormon Exaltation aren’t the same, they have enough in common that I would say Exaltation is a type of Theosis, and the main differences come from Mormons rejection of Ex Nihilo and the Trinity. Both traditions believe that God wants man to become deified, and that it’s man’s reason for existing. (Cont)

  34. TJayT says:

    Both believe that we have the nature to become deified. Both believe that Christ’s Grace is the only way to become deified. Both believe that there are certain things one must do beyond faith in Christ to receive deification, and these things must be done by those with the authority to do so. Both believe that you can fall from the path of deification and “miss the mark”. Both believe that after the resurrection we will continue on a path of eternal progression.

    Some of the main difference I see are that since the Greeks believe that the nature of God is fundamentally different from the nature of Man, and a bridge must be built between the two by Christ and Synergy to be able to bridge the gap. In contrast Mormons believe that God and Man share a similar essence and that deification is more like growth that is unlocked by Christ’s Grace. Another is exactly what we’ll do once we become deified. The Greeks believe that we’ll continue to grow in knowledge, wisdom, holiness and power forevermore and affirm the unlimited potential of divine beings they are constantly vague on what we’ll actually do while there. Mormons believe in all the things above, but go farther in saying that what we’ll do with this divinity is help other “intelligences” have the chance to be like us. To me both of these differences stem from the difference between Ex Nihilo and Ex Materia creation of souls. (Cont)

  35. TJayT says:

    I don’t feel that this is a twisting of doctrine so much as looking at the same doctrine through a different lens. As far as faith and works the as I said above the concept of synergy sounds exactly like what I believe. Take the parable of the drowning man, God from a ship throws a rope to a drowning man, pulls him up, saving him, and the man, if he wants to be saved, must hold on tightly to the rope; explaining both that salvation is a gift from God and man cannot save himself, and that man must co-work with God in the process of salvation. God’s grace is what saves me, but there are things I must do to “hold on”. At any time I can stop doing these things and “let go”, and not be saved.

    Sorry for the multiple posts everyone, guess I had a lot to say today.

  36. Rick B says:

    I disagree with what you said to me for a few reasons.
    1. The Bible says, Not Rick Said, The Bible and therefore God said, People willing refuse to come to the truth and they want their itching ears tickled. If that offendeds you then you need to take that up with God.

    2. The Bible tells us to contend for the faith, Honestly I dont see Mormons contending for their faith, You simply put it upon the Missionary’s to do that, sadly they cannot. The Bible never says, Tell some one to talk to a pastor, or a leader in Charge, Or a missionary. The Bible says, Be ready to give every man an answer for the hope that lies with in you. I ask you for the hope that lies with in you and you judge me and tell me you dont think I really want to know. Really? Can you back that position up from the Bible?

    Why is it that Mormons claim we Christians judge them all the time, yet they/you are free to judge us with statements like that? Did you not read the words of your prophets and leaders and the BoM?

    Things like this were said

    –CONVINCE US of our errors of doctrine, if we have any, by reason, by logical arguments, or by the word of god, and we will be ever grateful for the information, and you will ever have the pleasing reflection that you have been instruments in the hands of God redeeming your fellow beings from the darkness which you may see enveloping their minds.


  37. Rick B says:


    Alma 26:29-30 29: And we have entered into their houses and taught them, and we have taught them in their streets; yea, and we have taught them upon their hills; and we have also entered into their temples and their synagogues and taught them; and we have been cast out, and mocked, and spit upon, and smote upon our cheeks; and we have been stoned, and taken and bound with strong cords, and cast into prison; and through the power and wisdom of God we have been delivered again. 30: And we have suffered all manner of afflictions, and all this, that perhaps we might be the means of saving some soul; and we supposed that our joy would be full if perhaps we could be the means of saving some.

    Read pg. 188 of Doctrines of Salvation vol. 1, I quote Joseph F Smith. “CHURCH STANDS OR FALLS WITH JOSEPH SMITH. MORMONISM, as it is called, must stand or fall on the story of Joseph Smith. He was either a prophet of God, divinely called, properly appointed and commissioned, or he was one of the biggest frauds this world has ever seen. There is no middle ground. If Joseph Smith was a deceiver, who willfully attempted to mislead the people, then he should be exposed: his claims should be rufuted, and his doctrines shown to be false”.

    Read also

    D and C 71:5-11 98:14,23-26: it says meet your enemy in public. If I am your enemy, which I don’t feel I am, it says meet me in public to talk about these things. Jesus said, “Love your enemy.” D and C 66:7 68:1,9 says to go into the churches, publicly or privately to discuss these things. D and C 6:9-11 says,

  38. Rick B says:

    Their should be one comment before this to help it make sense, It is in Mod Jail.


    says to go into the churches, publicly or privately to discuss these things. D and C 6:9-11 says, Convince us of our error if we have any.

    The Seer pg. 15. “we ask from you the same generosity–protect us in the exercise of our religious rights–CONVINCE US of our errors of doctrine, if we have any, by reason, by logical arguments, or by the word of God, and we will be ever grateful for the information, and you will ever have the pleasing reflection that you have been instruments in the hands of God redeeming your fellow beings from the darkness which you may see enveloping their minds”.

    I am just trying to look at mormonism in a logical way and point out what I believe are problems. I find it interesting that Mormons of old were willing to tell others they were wrong or be open to talks, but it does not appear to be that way today.

    Mormon President George A. Smith said on page 216 in volume 14 of the J.O.D.

    “If a faith will not bear to be investigated; if it’s preachers and professors are afraid to have it examined, their foundation must be very weak.”

    I believe this fits the Mormons perfectly, as they really don’t want their faith to be examined.

    I ask questions and all I hear in reply is, You dont really want to know anyway. Really? Then why am I asking? and why do I take the time to read Mormon scriptures and study Mormonism if I dont care and dont really want to know? Also show me where Jesus says, Sorry, you dont really want to know.

  39. grindael says:


    The concept of Theosis is simple.

    Through the Spirit, justified believers are of necessity morally transformed, to some degree, over time, already in this life (see Romans 6:1-11).

    In Paul’s expositions, God’s declaration of justified, now is a performative utterance, an effective word that does not return void but effects transformation. This transformation changes our relationships with both God and believers. The double love command sums up the ethics of Paul just as much as it does explicitly for those of Jesus (Mark 12:28-33), even if it never appears in that form in so many words in the writings of the apostle to the Gentiles. And enacting divine love can never be separated from pursuing his justice, so no one need fear that this focus on love works against the struggle for justice in our world.

    Paul the Jew knew well God’s call to be holy as he is holy (Lev. 19:1). To be holy, therefore, is to be Godlike. (gods) But Paul stresses our recreation in the image of God, just as Christ is the perfect image of God, in righteousness and holiness (cf. Col. 3:10 and Eph. 4:24), through the power of the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:7-4:6).

    Can this be done by works? Why is one baptized, or why does one partake of the sacrament? Are these sacraments what change us, or is it the Grace of God, transforming us into new creatures, (gods)? One is not baptized only to have the slate wiped clean, so to speak, it is deeper than that, it is born out of commitment to be like God, to be holy, and submit to His will, and give an outward show of devotion that we covenant to do so.

    Remembering Christ by partaking of bread and wine, is a time for reflection

  40. grindael says:

    not a mystical rite that gives one power over sin. Which comes first, the changed heart, or the works? And what was the crux of Jesus message? It was the focus of love, laying aside the works of the law, for in them we are not justified in any way. Is baptism itself, more important than the changed heart that accedes to the Grace of God, which opens the soul to the Holy Spirit which transforms us into new creatures? As Paul states,

    “So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. For when we were in the realm of the flesh, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death. But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.” (Romans 7:4-6)

    What are sacraments but voluntary submission to Christ? Expressions of love? Who are they for? “Do this in remembrance of me,” is certainly not “do this to qualify for godhood”. We are conformed to Christ’s moral likeness by way of Grace and the Spirit. In no way is this ever forced, in the least bit. When it is forced, it brings destruction.

    As we are increasingly conformed to Christ’s moral likeness, then, our justification becomes our theosis. That is why Paul regularly calls us “saints” (“holy ones”) or that sanctification is a central theme particularly in 1 Thessalonians, Galatians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, and Philippians. Nor is this merely individual growth in

  41. grindael says:

    being like God, it is also corporate as the church becomes what it was called to be. That is not an organization, or a body of men that set regulations for others, (claiming to speak for God in this manner), because the Church is the individual, gathered together with others of like mind. “Where two or three are gathered, I am there”.

    As for falling off the path of theosis, Paul has expressed this dilemma most eloquently,

    “We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

    So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What

  42. grindael says:

    a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Romans 7:14-25)

    With this, is there any chance that we cannot fail? It would seem not. But what changes the balance, is the Grace of Jesus. Again,

    “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1-4)

    Your statement that “being born of the spirit is only part of the process of Theosis” misses what Paul and Jesus teach. Being born of the Spirit is theosis, for one truly born of the Spirit has submitted themselves to Christ, and therefore lives according to the Spirit, and is justified by Grace, taking upon themselves the very nature of Christ. To fall, is to turn from the Spirit. The turning away, becomes evident by people’s “works”. (see James).

    This is so simple, and so beautiful and powerful, that it does not need the extra things added to it, that men do to gain power and dominion over others. All share in direct access to God by the Spirit. Organization, comes from saints gathering together. And though there be elders appointed to fulfill the duties of the organization, they

  43. grindael says:

    are chosen from the body of believers, not to dictate God’s laws to them, but to oversee, and guide others on the path to Christ, upheld and approved by all, one in Christ Jesus: gifts to the church by Him.

    Mormonism in fact, states that God is subject to law, and that it is by submission to that law (priesthood) that men are saved. But they miss the fact that love is the law that God lives by, and that is why he is God. Mormonism is simply a set of laws that men enacted to have power over others, (i.e. “infinite regression”) They had to anthropomorphize God, to make it appear sensible to finite minds. What troubled me was that you said anthropomorphism made men closer to God, than His being a Spirit, and Triune in nature.

    In Mormonism, it is not out of love, that God sacrificed himself, but it was done as an aspect of the natural progression of gods. (The process is repeated over and over, world upon world). In Mormonism, Jesus (as firstborn) was born to be the sacrifice. In Christianity, God sacrificed himself to save men from their sinful natures, which they chose by breaking his commandments. The incarnation of God, from Spirit, to mortality, his κένωσις (kénōsis), was the ultimate act of love, to bring his estranged creation back into his presence. It was not a “formula”, it was pure love for his creation that had erred and gone astray.

    “Exaltation” is the ultimate act of law. For you must live a set of “celestial laws” to the letter, to qualify. Mormons actually cheapen the Grace of Jesus, because it only saves one for eternal damnation. (A resurrection, nothing more). One has to earn the rest. This is not what Jesus, or any of

  44. grindael says:

    his Apostles ever taught. It is exactly the opposite of what Grace is. Sanctification, is born of the Spirit and a changed heart. We are transformed (sanctified), not by a set of rules and regulations (the most heinous, tithing and the word of wisdom), but by the Grace of God and the Holy Spirit that lives within us, and makes us gods.

    I am far from eloquent. I am full of weakness. But I do know, that the power of life, is in the words of Jesus and his Apostles. I have been set free of the world, not by following the path of any man, but by taking upon myself the image of Christ, which has transformed me into something greater than what I was.

    I know many Mormons feel the same way. But what they must do, is test the words of any who claim to know God, and decide if what they say, is consistent with His revealed word.

    I have found that what they say is not. If these men want to set themselves up as dictators over others, (which they do), we know that they do not have the Holy Spirit within them. If they want to force others to live laws and regulations, we know that they are not of God, for that is not His way. We have all the guidelines needed for our salvation, in the words of Jesus and His Apostles. We may be edified by “prophets”, and other gifts, but they no longer command us as “spokesman for God”. That is the mission of the Holy Spirit, as Jesus said it was. _johnny

  45. Kate says:

    Thank you for your explanation. You said that ” even though Greek Theosis and Mormon Exaltation aren’t the same, they have enough in common that I would say Exaltation is a type of Theosis” I Just have to ask what they have in common? I don’t think you are understanding Theosis, or you are trying really hard to make it fit Mormonism. The link you provided stated that Theosis is NOT to be confused with Apotheosis, which is man to God. Johnny has laid Theosis out beautifully. I know that when I was a Mormon, I probably would have had a hard time with his explanation because I had it drilled into my head that anything from Christianity was an abomination to God and you certainly can’t live with God again if you don’t do “all that you can do” because ONLY then will Jesus do the rest. God’s Grace was so far away for me as a Mormon. What a gift His Grace truly is! Try studying it without the Mormon glasses on and see if it doesn’t look differently to you.

    “I don’t feel that this is a twisting of doctrine so much as looking at the same doctrine through a different lens.”

    Why would God want us to do this? Why would he give us His Holy Word and then expect us to use different lenses to look at it? Just think about Isaiah 40:8. “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.” The bible is trustworthy, and IS the Word of God! There’s never been a Monk who intentionally left things out. No great conspiracy to hide God’s truth. There was no great apostasy. I had a hard time letting myself trust

  46. Kate says:

    the Bible at first. I finally took a leap of faith, went out, bought myself a King James Version not affiliated with the LDS church, asked God to reveal himself to me and read it. I saw God without the LDS lens for the first time in my life. He is so much more than I was ever taught. Johnny is right, Mormonism does “cheapen the Grace of Jesus.” I am done doing that. I hope that one day you can see the true and living Christ of the Bible as he TRULY is. All you have to do is ask. 🙂

  47. TJayT says:

    Rick B

    1: People here have on more then one occasion told me about the wolves and people wanting there ears tickled. I know Mike R has, and I’m fairly certain that others have as well. In those instances it never felt like someone personally attacking me, and it’s not hard to use the word of God to attack and belittle others if that is someone’s goal. However if you didn’t mean any offence then I honestly and sincerely appologize. Also if you took offence to what I said I again appologize, I was simply trying to say what I had understood and my response to that.

    2: Mormons defend there faith all the time. Why else are there so many appologist websites and blogs all over the internet. I spoke of some of them earlier in this topic. I don’t think I judge people here for there beliefes, or there intentions, but I’m not purfect. I know that everyone that I have talked to here is honestly worried about my eternal soul. There comments to me aren’t out of hatred.

    I can’t speak for “mormons of old” and how they spoke to or treated others. Personally I go out of my way to just let people think feel and believe, and if I’m wrong for that so be it. Give me a day and I’ll post a reply in Grindael’s thread, but I know that you have been reading and posting on this blog for a very long time, and I doubt I will have any information that you haven’t heard before. But I’ll give it a shot.

  48. TJayT says:


    Your right, the concept of Theosis is simple. Maybe a more accurate way for me to get my point across would be to say the process of Theosis isn’t (at least not to the Greeks).

    Christ is the perfect image of God, and what each of us should strive for. The Greeks see our ultimate nature reviled by Christ’s transfiguration in Matt 17 1-8. Theosis will make us fully human and fully divine, just as Christ is. And divinity goes beyond rightousness and holyness. I quoted to Kate from Archimandrite George earlier, “…the purpose of our life is not just that man should become better than he is, more moral, more just, more self-controlled, more mindful; all these must happen, but none of them are the great purpose, the ultimate purpose for which our Maker and Creator molded man.” They belive we’ll shair everything that God is, short of his essence (Incorporiality, Immensity, Transendence, etc). We will shair in Knowledge, Holyness, Power, Wisdom, Love and every other thing Jesus was after his transfiguration. He is the model of exactly what Theosis will be. Everything Jesus could do while on the earth we’ll be able to participate in. From what I read Christ was all powerful while on earth, able to do pretty much anything. And since God is infinite we will forever be progressing through him.

    I agree this can’t be accomplished by works. But it can be accomplished by synergy. The Eucharist isn’t seen as a mystical rite that gives us power over sin. But it is seen as a mystical rite that slowly infuses us with God’s energy on our path to Theosis. Same with Baptizem, it’s not mearly for sin removal, or to show one’s commitment to be like God. (Cont)

  49. TJayT says:

    cont)It’s considered a sacred mystery and a truly supernatural change that intantly divinizes man’s soul and begins the path to Theosis.

    It sounds to me from your posts that you belive the doctrine of synergy is synonymous with works. I couldn’t disagree more. Both the Greeks and Mormons believe that Christ’s Grace alone will save us. Nothing that I do will ever save me, ever be enough, ever be more then filthy rags. But we must accept his Grace, openly and willingly (see the parable of the drowning man I told Kate). Greeks feel this is done through prayer, obedience to the commandments, ongoing repentance and participating in the sacraments (baptizem, Chrismation, the Eucharist, confession, joining the Holy Priesthood (for any man that wishes to), marriage and Unction (anointing the sick). Mormons have a very similar view. Christ’s Grace alone can save us, but we must also willingly accept his grace through prayer, obedience to the commandments, ongoing repentance, baptizm, conformation, taking on the priesthood (for men), participating in the endowment and finally mariage. You can say that Mormons try to earn salvation, but you would also have to say Othodox (and Catholics as far as I understand) Christians do the same thing. If you belive this then that’s fine, but there are millions of people on the planet that disagree with you.

  50. TJayT says:


    My understanding of Apotheosis is that we would be trying to take on God’s Essence ( again his Incorporiality, Immensity, Transendence, etc) I can see why Greeks need to make this distinction, there is no way to partake in these qualites and not have Him sease being God. But there isn’t a need for Mormons to worry about the distiction, because our view of God doesn’t need to worry about stepping on his toes so to speak. The article I sighted earlier was a very quick look at the differences between the two theologies. If you want to take a few minutes for a deeper look at the two then read “Partakers in Divine Nature” by Father Jordan Vajda. You can find it here It’s his master’s thesis from Graduate Theological Union at the University of California, Berkeley. The most relevant sections are “The Doctrine of Theosis, or Becoming a God” and everything below it. In it he lays out the similarites and differences and comes to a very different conclusion from Grindael. As for different lenses, God gave the Jews the holy scripture for years, then asked them to view it through a different lens when Christ came. I see it the same way now, Christ gave Christians the holy scripture and now asks us to view it through a different lens.

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