How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

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deacon blues
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How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by deacon blues » Thu Sep 23, 2021 5:21 pm

I have written before about how the LDS has become for many members an idol or god. Many ideas have contributed to this, examples: Unquestioning obedience, authoritarianism, etc.
I recall a quote where Joseph Smith said something like: "I am god to this (the LDS) people." But I can't find a reference to this. Can anybody help?
Last edited by deacon blues on Thu Sep 30, 2021 8:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
God is Love. God is Truth. The greatest problem with organized religion is that the organization becomes god, rather than a means of serving God.

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Palerider
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by Palerider » Thu Sep 23, 2021 7:00 pm

Maybe Brigham inferred it?

Journal of Discourses 4:271; “A man cannot find out himself without the light of revelation; he has to turn round and seek to the Lord his God, in order to find out himself. If you find out who Joseph was, you will know as much about God as you need to at present; for if He said, “I am a God to this people,” He did not say that He was the only wise God. Jesus was a God to the people when he was upon earth, was so before he came to this earth, and is yet. Moses was a God to the children of Israel, and in this manner you may go right back to Father Adam.” – Brigham Young, Salt Lake City, March 8, 1857


I'm still looking.

ETA:

The Rocky Mountain Saints, 1873, 1904 edition, pg 294; “[Heber C. Kimball] declared to the people that Brigham Young was his God, and their God, and the only God they would ever see if they did not obey him: ‘Joseph Smith was God to the inhabitants of the earth when he was amongst us, and Brigham is God now.’ This strain was caught up and reiterated by many of the elders, from Orson Hyde, the president of the twelve apostles, down to the most ignorant teacher, and to question it openly was to be put under the ban.” – T. B. H. Stenhouse

I'd need to do a little more research on Stenhouse to see exactly where he stands in Mormon history. But he seems to have heard these statements firsthand.
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Hagoth
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by Hagoth » Fri Sep 24, 2021 8:10 am

Palerider wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 7:00 pm
Maybe Brigham inferred it?

Journal of Discourses 4:271; “A man cannot find out himself without the light of revelation; he has to turn round and seek to the Lord his God, in order to find out himself. If you find out who Joseph was, you will know as much about God as you need to at present; for if He said, “I am a God to this people,” He did not say that He was the only wise God. Jesus was a God to the people when he was upon earth, was so before he came to this earth, and is yet. Moses was a God to the children of Israel, and in this manner you may go right back to Father Adam.” – Brigham Young, Salt Lake City, March 8, 1857


I'm still looking.

ETA:

The Rocky Mountain Saints, 1873, 1904 edition, pg 294; “[Heber C. Kimball] declared to the people that Brigham Young was his God, and their God, and the only God they would ever see if they did not obey him: ‘Joseph Smith was God to the inhabitants of the earth when he was amongst us, and Brigham is God now.’ This strain was caught up and reiterated by many of the elders, from Orson Hyde, the president of the twelve apostles, down to the most ignorant teacher, and to question it openly was to be put under the ban.” – T. B. H. Stenhouse

I'd need to do a little more research on Stenhouse to see exactly where he stands in Mormon history. But he seems to have heard these statements firsthand.
I remember using these quotes on my mission to explain away the Adam-God doctrine. Brigham was just using the word "god" to mean someone who played an essential role. He didn't mean what you think he meant. Boy did I feel stupid years later when I found out that he really did mean exactly what he said.

I also think the temple is a god for Mormons. Listen to how they talk about it and make it the most important thing in their lives. The temple gets far more direct worship and acknowledgement than Jesus. And, to a lesser degree, Satan is a god of Mormonism too, based on how much respect he gets and how awed they are with his power to persuade people far more than Elohim seems to be capable of.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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deacon blues
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by deacon blues » Fri Sep 24, 2021 3:25 pm

I could be wrong, but I think the Jerusalem temple was an idol for the ancient Jews also. I see it as a means to for kings like Solomon and Josiah for controlling the people, just like modern the LDS temples. I think Jesus saw the Pharisees using the Jerusalem temple the same way.

Thanks folks for the help with the "Joseph/Brigham" is a god to this people quote. That is probably the one I recall. I guess that quote, taken literally, means Russell M. Nelson is the god of Mormonism today. Gives me the shivers.
God is Love. God is Truth. The greatest problem with organized religion is that the organization becomes god, rather than a means of serving God.

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Hagoth
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by Hagoth » Fri Sep 24, 2021 4:48 pm

deacon blues wrote:
Fri Sep 24, 2021 3:25 pm
That is probably the one I recall. I guess that quote, taken literally, means Russell M. Nelson is the god of Mormonism today. Gives me the shivers.
That doesn't keep me up at night, but Bednar? Oaks?
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“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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moksha
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by moksha » Fri Sep 24, 2021 7:00 pm

Palerider wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 7:00 pm
I'd need to do a little more research on Stenhouse to see exactly where he stands in Mormon history. But he seems to have heard these statements firsthand.
https://www.google.com/books/edition/Te ... frontcover
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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moksha
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by moksha » Sun Sep 26, 2021 8:21 am

How Does a Church Become a God or THE God?
It starts by total immersion underwater, then it must be confirmed. Later on, it takes out its endowments. It must marry a bunch of wives, either on a haystack, a closet, the back of a wagon, or the Temple. It pays 10% plus into an investment fund (but no charity). It must serve the will of Church leaders in all things. It must survive renovations before being eventually sold off.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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blazerb
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by blazerb » Mon Sep 27, 2021 4:31 pm

I believe I remember a quote like this. I think it was riffing off Exodus 7:1
And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.
If I remember correctly, and I'm too lazy to check, the JST modifies this, but that wouldn't prevent JS from taking inspiration. Whenever I search for crazy JS quotes, the first page of results are all from the church. SEO at its finest.

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Hagoth
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by Hagoth » Wed Sep 29, 2021 6:07 am

This is the church
This is the steeple
Open the door
And see all the... whoa!

The widow's mite = the church's might
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“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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deacon blues
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Re: How Does a Church Become a God, or the God?

Post by deacon blues » Thu Sep 30, 2021 8:28 am

blazerb wrote:
Mon Sep 27, 2021 4:31 pm
I believe I remember a quote like this. I think it was riffing off Exodus 7:1
And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.
If I remember correctly, and I'm too lazy to check, the JST modifies this, but that wouldn't prevent JS from taking inspiration. Whenever I search for crazy JS quotes, the first page of results are all from the church. SEO at its finest.
Yep. The Bible can be used to justify anything.
God is Love. God is Truth. The greatest problem with organized religion is that the organization becomes god, rather than a means of serving God.

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