The Mormons’ Heavenly Mother

Mormon author Warren Aston writes about that religion’s other deity:

It is Gospel Doctrine 101 that we are the children of God. Our spirits are the children of a Heavenly Father and a Heavenly Mother in the most literal sense possible. We have within us the genes of Godhood, the potential to develop and grow into the glorious, exalted beings they are. We lived with them before coming to earth to gain physical bodies in their likeness, male and female.

God’s whole work is to bring to pass our immortality and eternal life, bringing us back into God’s presence, redeemed and sanctified through our obedience and discipline. The laws and covenants that mark our progress on that journey home comprise the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The framework for that journey, and much-needed support, is provided by the Church.

When Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Twelve spoke some years ago in General Conference about the heavenly home-coming that the obedient can look forward to, he noted that our Mother in Heaven would surely have a role.

via Meridian Magazine – The Other Half of Heaven: Debunking Myths about Heavenly Mother – Meridian Magazine – LDS, Mormon and Latter-day Saint News and Views.

Mr. Aston goes on to criticize some of his fellow-Mormons for not emphasizing the Heavenly Mother as much as she deserves.  Notice the other Mormon doctrines we see here:  We have the genes of Godhood and will grow into deities ourselves, just like our Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother.  We are redeemed and sanctified by our “obedience and discipline.” The Gospel of Jesus Christ consists of laws.

Does any of that sound like Christianity? But notice the potential for popularity today.  Postmodernists would love the notion of a Heavenly Mother and the promise that we get to be gods ourselves.

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • TE Schroeder

    This quote is outstanding! It needs to be reposted and given as much of an audience as possible. The Mormons have one upped Satan himself!

    Satan: “You will not surely die! You will be like God….”
    Mormons: “Ha! LIKE God?! No, you can BE God!”

    Sadly, it seems to work as well as it did in Eden. Even more sadly, the results are the same.

  • TE Schroeder

    This quote is outstanding! It needs to be reposted and given as much of an audience as possible. The Mormons have one upped Satan himself!

    Satan: “You will not surely die! You will be like God….”
    Mormons: “Ha! LIKE God?! No, you can BE God!”

    Sadly, it seems to work as well as it did in Eden. Even more sadly, the results are the same.

  • Michael B.

    “Mr. Aston goes on to criticize some of his fellow-Mormons for not emphasizing the Heavenly Mother as much as she deserves. ”

    Nice. This is one wacky belief I wasn’t aware of. Would She be a member of the Trinity?I guess we’d have to rename it the Quadrinity? Is that how they explain a Father and a Son? I remember hearing someone compare the Book of Mormon as the final in a trilogy. As if the New Testament is like the “The Two Towers” or “The Empire Strikes Back”.

  • Michael B.

    “Mr. Aston goes on to criticize some of his fellow-Mormons for not emphasizing the Heavenly Mother as much as she deserves. ”

    Nice. This is one wacky belief I wasn’t aware of. Would She be a member of the Trinity?I guess we’d have to rename it the Quadrinity? Is that how they explain a Father and a Son? I remember hearing someone compare the Book of Mormon as the final in a trilogy. As if the New Testament is like the “The Two Towers” or “The Empire Strikes Back”.

  • Jeff

    How anybody could read that and think that Mormons are Christians is beyond me. ‘Redeemed and sanctified through our obedience and discipline’ How about ‘none is righteous, no, not one’ (Rom 3:10) or ‘no one is justified before God by the law’ (Gal 3:11)

    I don’t think there is a more satanic religion than Mormonism. They just destroy the Gospel.

  • Jeff

    How anybody could read that and think that Mormons are Christians is beyond me. ‘Redeemed and sanctified through our obedience and discipline’ How about ‘none is righteous, no, not one’ (Rom 3:10) or ‘no one is justified before God by the law’ (Gal 3:11)

    I don’t think there is a more satanic religion than Mormonism. They just destroy the Gospel.

  • Other Gary

    “Postmodernists would love the notion of a Heavenly Mother and the promise that we get to be gods ourselves.”

    That’s ludicrous and untrue! Do you actually know a self-identified Postmodernist who approves of the Mormon religion because he digs some supposed feminism involved with having a “Mother” deity? The only Mormons I’ve known ooze modern assumptions from every pore of their bodies–with an inexcusable naïveté, they try to persuade non-Mormons their religion’s beliefs are objectively true, stemming from a source of direct revelation (no interpretation required). And as far as being gods themselves, the first order of business among the Postmodernists is to acknowledge their own biases, along with raising suspicions about everyone else’s. If I admit my biases prevent me from apprehending “objective” reality, how does that support the idea of being a god? Or if the point is Postmoderns are supposed to be in love with god-like autonomy, do you think it would escape their notice that Mormons don’t actually get to express any personal autonomy? That Mormonism is inherently authoritarian?

    Postmodernism seems like it would act as good preventative against falling into the clutches of Mormon religion. Lay off the hating.

  • Other Gary

    “Postmodernists would love the notion of a Heavenly Mother and the promise that we get to be gods ourselves.”

    That’s ludicrous and untrue! Do you actually know a self-identified Postmodernist who approves of the Mormon religion because he digs some supposed feminism involved with having a “Mother” deity? The only Mormons I’ve known ooze modern assumptions from every pore of their bodies–with an inexcusable naïveté, they try to persuade non-Mormons their religion’s beliefs are objectively true, stemming from a source of direct revelation (no interpretation required). And as far as being gods themselves, the first order of business among the Postmodernists is to acknowledge their own biases, along with raising suspicions about everyone else’s. If I admit my biases prevent me from apprehending “objective” reality, how does that support the idea of being a god? Or if the point is Postmoderns are supposed to be in love with god-like autonomy, do you think it would escape their notice that Mormons don’t actually get to express any personal autonomy? That Mormonism is inherently authoritarian?

    Postmodernism seems like it would act as good preventative against falling into the clutches of Mormon religion. Lay off the hating.

  • Tom Hering

    Did you really just say critics of postmodernism are haters? I’m sorry, but that’s so stereotypical, I have to assume you’re kidding.

  • Tom Hering

    Did you really just say critics of postmodernism are haters? I’m sorry, but that’s so stereotypical, I have to assume you’re kidding.

  • http://www.christlutheran.net Jeff Samelson

    Other Gary, I would like to follow Tom Hering in assuming you’re kidding. But in case you’re not, may I ask: How many books on postmodernism have *you* written, that you feel qualified to take Dr. Veith to task on his understanding of it?

  • http://www.christlutheran.net Jeff Samelson

    Other Gary, I would like to follow Tom Hering in assuming you’re kidding. But in case you’re not, may I ask: How many books on postmodernism have *you* written, that you feel qualified to take Dr. Veith to task on his understanding of it?

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    A different God, a different scripture, a different Jesus, a different way of salvation, a different history, and add in a few extras like the Heavenly Mother. Just minor details to some, I guess.

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    A different God, a different scripture, a different Jesus, a different way of salvation, a different history, and add in a few extras like the Heavenly Mother. Just minor details to some, I guess.

  • Isaac

    @Michael B.
    The placement of a divine mother would probably matter more if the Mormons were Trinitarian, instead of their belief that the godhead is composed of separate persons. Who still need the divine mother to give birth to human souls, apparently.

  • Isaac

    @Michael B.
    The placement of a divine mother would probably matter more if the Mormons were Trinitarian, instead of their belief that the godhead is composed of separate persons. Who still need the divine mother to give birth to human souls, apparently.

  • http://homewardbound-cb.blogspot.com ChrisB

    @Michael,

    I don’t think they believe in the Trinity in a Nicean sense. Jesus is literally the offspring of the Father and Mother, just as we are. So is, iirc, Satan.

  • http://homewardbound-cb.blogspot.com ChrisB

    @Michael,

    I don’t think they believe in the Trinity in a Nicean sense. Jesus is literally the offspring of the Father and Mother, just as we are. So is, iirc, Satan.

  • Jon

    I think that it is not a cult or even a heresy anymore. It is just an “other” religion, that happens to use some of the same words that historic Christianity does.

    What gets me is why Mormons would want to consider themselves a part of the big tent Christian church. “We’re Christians, just like you.” I always hear that from them. No, your leaders teach that it is “The” Church of Jesus Christ. The rest of us are all apostate.

    So when they say, “We’re Christians just like you,” I think they believe in their mind that, because they teach that we are all very literally God’s children sent to earth to re-learn and earn the path back to our god-hood, that we really are all connected into the church as Christians, but that we apostates outside “The” LDS Church suffer from some kind of spiritual amnesia that we have to overcome.

    The other thing that strikes me about this heavenly father/mother thing is how incomplete and not thoroughly worked out the basic theology really is when you think about it. I mean, it becomes obvious that Mormons can’t say that they actually worship the one true, eternal God who started it all–from the beginning, who was before the beginning from eternity. If this pattern of progression has gone on forever, then they are just worshipping a God named “Elohim” who himself used to be a man on another world, just as he was a spirit child and progressed to Godhood.

    And then there’s the Jesus thing in this progression. What’s Jesus doing back in Heavenly Father’s realm? If he is the proto-typical example of how to get to exaltation as a God, shouldn’t he be off somewhere else populating his own world where he is worshipped as God?

    I find this notion of being eternally together sealed as a family–which is the primary selling point that their missionaries usually use–to be conflicting with the doctrine of progressing into Gods. As man is, God once was; as God is, man may become, you know. Well, then how are we all going to be together as a family if we each get our own world to be a God over after exaltation.

    And if these are the rules of how it works, who is the rule giver? Surely not Elohim. I’d prefer to worship the First and only God, myself.

  • Jon

    I think that it is not a cult or even a heresy anymore. It is just an “other” religion, that happens to use some of the same words that historic Christianity does.

    What gets me is why Mormons would want to consider themselves a part of the big tent Christian church. “We’re Christians, just like you.” I always hear that from them. No, your leaders teach that it is “The” Church of Jesus Christ. The rest of us are all apostate.

    So when they say, “We’re Christians just like you,” I think they believe in their mind that, because they teach that we are all very literally God’s children sent to earth to re-learn and earn the path back to our god-hood, that we really are all connected into the church as Christians, but that we apostates outside “The” LDS Church suffer from some kind of spiritual amnesia that we have to overcome.

    The other thing that strikes me about this heavenly father/mother thing is how incomplete and not thoroughly worked out the basic theology really is when you think about it. I mean, it becomes obvious that Mormons can’t say that they actually worship the one true, eternal God who started it all–from the beginning, who was before the beginning from eternity. If this pattern of progression has gone on forever, then they are just worshipping a God named “Elohim” who himself used to be a man on another world, just as he was a spirit child and progressed to Godhood.

    And then there’s the Jesus thing in this progression. What’s Jesus doing back in Heavenly Father’s realm? If he is the proto-typical example of how to get to exaltation as a God, shouldn’t he be off somewhere else populating his own world where he is worshipped as God?

    I find this notion of being eternally together sealed as a family–which is the primary selling point that their missionaries usually use–to be conflicting with the doctrine of progressing into Gods. As man is, God once was; as God is, man may become, you know. Well, then how are we all going to be together as a family if we each get our own world to be a God over after exaltation.

    And if these are the rules of how it works, who is the rule giver? Surely not Elohim. I’d prefer to worship the First and only God, myself.

  • Other Gary

    Tom: Only partly kidding. Jeff @ 6: none. I have read Dr. Veith’s books, his Post-Modern Times and his Modern Fascism, and at first I was greatly impressed. Actually, when I read PMT, what struck me at first was being offered a fair-handed critique. He did NOT appear to be automatically dismissing the whole thing.

    Anymore, however, he doesn’t sound like he’s offering critiques, just assuming his blog readers disagree with Postmodernism, which is a dubious assumption at best.

    Seriously, he was posting about a development going on in the weird, wacky world of Mormonism; to what purpose was the remark added about notions Postmodernist may or may not “love”? I can imagine no universe where a thorough-going Postmodernist would give 5 minutes of consideration to the claims of Mormonism.

    If dropping “hate” was a bit tongue-in-cheek, it’s still understandable I might call foul on dragging Postmodernism into a discussion where it doesn’t belong.

  • Other Gary

    Tom: Only partly kidding. Jeff @ 6: none. I have read Dr. Veith’s books, his Post-Modern Times and his Modern Fascism, and at first I was greatly impressed. Actually, when I read PMT, what struck me at first was being offered a fair-handed critique. He did NOT appear to be automatically dismissing the whole thing.

    Anymore, however, he doesn’t sound like he’s offering critiques, just assuming his blog readers disagree with Postmodernism, which is a dubious assumption at best.

    Seriously, he was posting about a development going on in the weird, wacky world of Mormonism; to what purpose was the remark added about notions Postmodernist may or may not “love”? I can imagine no universe where a thorough-going Postmodernist would give 5 minutes of consideration to the claims of Mormonism.

    If dropping “hate” was a bit tongue-in-cheek, it’s still understandable I might call foul on dragging Postmodernism into a discussion where it doesn’t belong.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    *in Office Space voice* Yeeeahhhh…. they’re really not Christian on a whole lotta levels there…

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    *in Office Space voice* Yeeeahhhh…. they’re really not Christian on a whole lotta levels there…

  • http://www.gslcnm.com Pastor Philip Spomer

    One of the frustrating things about an attempted dialog with Mormons is that when you bring up their anti-Christian doctrines to illustrate that they are not Christians, they will wax indignant, either denying said doctrines, or declaring that the doctrines are and always have been part of true Christianity. With other non-Christian religions, mutual definition is rarely a problem. We may deeply disagree with each other, but we both agree on where the lines are drawn. But with Mormons, talking to them is like trying to nail Jello to the wall.

  • http://www.gslcnm.com Pastor Philip Spomer

    One of the frustrating things about an attempted dialog with Mormons is that when you bring up their anti-Christian doctrines to illustrate that they are not Christians, they will wax indignant, either denying said doctrines, or declaring that the doctrines are and always have been part of true Christianity. With other non-Christian religions, mutual definition is rarely a problem. We may deeply disagree with each other, but we both agree on where the lines are drawn. But with Mormons, talking to them is like trying to nail Jello to the wall.

  • Grace

    Below is a little known belief of the Mormons. Michael the Archangel is not our Father and our God. The Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus is Michael the Archangel. Both are as far from Christians.

    “Now hear it, O inhabitants of the earth, Jew and Gentile, Saint and sinner! When our father Adam came into the garden of Eden, he came into it with a celestial body, and brought Eve, one of his wives, with him. He helped to make and organize this world. He is Michael, the Archangel, the Ancient of Days! about whom holy men have written and spoken—He is our Father and our God, and the only God with whom we have to do. Every man upon the earth, professing Christians or non-professing, must hear it, and will know it sooner or later. They came here, organized the raw material, and arranged in their order the herbs of the field, the trees, the apple, the peach, the plum, the pear, and every other fruit that is desirable and good for man; the seed was brought from another sphere, and planted in this earth.”

    A Sermon by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, April 9, 1852. Volume 1, page 50

  • Grace

    Below is a little known belief of the Mormons. Michael the Archangel is not our Father and our God. The Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus is Michael the Archangel. Both are as far from Christians.

    “Now hear it, O inhabitants of the earth, Jew and Gentile, Saint and sinner! When our father Adam came into the garden of Eden, he came into it with a celestial body, and brought Eve, one of his wives, with him. He helped to make and organize this world. He is Michael, the Archangel, the Ancient of Days! about whom holy men have written and spoken—He is our Father and our God, and the only God with whom we have to do. Every man upon the earth, professing Christians or non-professing, must hear it, and will know it sooner or later. They came here, organized the raw material, and arranged in their order the herbs of the field, the trees, the apple, the peach, the plum, the pear, and every other fruit that is desirable and good for man; the seed was brought from another sphere, and planted in this earth.”

    A Sermon by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, April 9, 1852. Volume 1, page 50

  • Bob
  • Bob
  • Grace

    “This doctrine that there is a Mother in Heaven was affirmed in plainness by the First Presidency of the Church (Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder, and Anthon H. Lund) when, in speaking of pre-existence and the origin of man, they said that ‘man, as a spirit, was begotten and born of heavenly parents, and reared to maturity in the eternal mansions of the Father,’ that man is the ‘offspring of celestial parentage,’ and that ‘all men and women are in the similitude of the universal Father and Mother and are literally the sons and daughters of Deity.’

    Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 1966, p. 516
    Man: His Origin and Destiny, pp.348-355

     

    “A heap of dust alone remains of thee, ‘Tis all thou art and all the proud shall be,” while Mormonism, from an Abel, though dead, yet speaketh; from an Elijah though translated in a fiery chariot to heaven, yet, returns in glory with Moses, and blesses Jesus at the transfiguration on the mount! O Mormonism! Thy father is God, thy mother is the Queen of heaven, and so thy whole history, from eternity to eternity, is the laws, ordinances and truth of the “Gods”- embracing the simple plan of salvation, sanctification, death, resurrection, glorification and exaltation of man, from infancy to age, from age to eternity, from simplicity to sublimity: from faith, repentance, baptism, reception of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of the hands, to washing, anointing, presence of angels, the general assembly and church of the first born; to the unspeakable glory of seeing God and the Lamb, and to spirits of just men, made perfect, and to be ordained unto eternal life!

    (W. W. Phelps, “The Answer,” letter to William Smith, December 25, 1844, Nauvoo, Il, Times and Seasons 5 (January 1): 758.

  • Grace

    “This doctrine that there is a Mother in Heaven was affirmed in plainness by the First Presidency of the Church (Joseph F. Smith, John R. Winder, and Anthon H. Lund) when, in speaking of pre-existence and the origin of man, they said that ‘man, as a spirit, was begotten and born of heavenly parents, and reared to maturity in the eternal mansions of the Father,’ that man is the ‘offspring of celestial parentage,’ and that ‘all men and women are in the similitude of the universal Father and Mother and are literally the sons and daughters of Deity.’

    Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 1966, p. 516
    Man: His Origin and Destiny, pp.348-355

     

    “A heap of dust alone remains of thee, ‘Tis all thou art and all the proud shall be,” while Mormonism, from an Abel, though dead, yet speaketh; from an Elijah though translated in a fiery chariot to heaven, yet, returns in glory with Moses, and blesses Jesus at the transfiguration on the mount! O Mormonism! Thy father is God, thy mother is the Queen of heaven, and so thy whole history, from eternity to eternity, is the laws, ordinances and truth of the “Gods”- embracing the simple plan of salvation, sanctification, death, resurrection, glorification and exaltation of man, from infancy to age, from age to eternity, from simplicity to sublimity: from faith, repentance, baptism, reception of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of the hands, to washing, anointing, presence of angels, the general assembly and church of the first born; to the unspeakable glory of seeing God and the Lamb, and to spirits of just men, made perfect, and to be ordained unto eternal life!

    (W. W. Phelps, “The Answer,” letter to William Smith, December 25, 1844, Nauvoo, Il, Times and Seasons 5 (January 1): 758.

  • Grace

    Bob @ 15

    Man wants to INJECT “postmodernism” into the Word of God, it doesn’t work.

    The Bible doesn’t need a crutch, it’s man who looks for a newer, way to make changes, be they ever so slight. In the end, one can change and make excuses for anything, regarding the inerrant Word of God, changing it to meet the ‘DAYS one lives in, giving it a lofty but useless identity as “postmodernism” – it’s a tag that is useful to those who change the meaning of God’s Word.

  • Grace

    Bob @ 15

    Man wants to INJECT “postmodernism” into the Word of God, it doesn’t work.

    The Bible doesn’t need a crutch, it’s man who looks for a newer, way to make changes, be they ever so slight. In the end, one can change and make excuses for anything, regarding the inerrant Word of God, changing it to meet the ‘DAYS one lives in, giving it a lofty but useless identity as “postmodernism” – it’s a tag that is useful to those who change the meaning of God’s Word.

  • Bob

    Ah, yes, Grace.

    Your typical nuanced argument.

    You belong on this blog, for sure.

  • Bob

    Ah, yes, Grace.

    Your typical nuanced argument.

    You belong on this blog, for sure.

  • Grace

    Bob @18 “Your typical nuanced argument.     You belong on this blog, for sure.”

      No, not ‘nouanced” but straightforward!

      A better question is; where do you belong?

  • Grace

    Bob @18 “Your typical nuanced argument.     You belong on this blog, for sure.”

      No, not ‘nouanced” but straightforward!

      A better question is; where do you belong?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@14), how can that be a “little known belief”, given that you’ve pasted that paragraph into comments on this blog no fewer than eight times?

    Are you assuming that no one’s reading your comments?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@14), how can that be a “little known belief”, given that you’ve pasted that paragraph into comments on this blog no fewer than eight times?

    Are you assuming that no one’s reading your comments?

  • Grace

    tODD “Grace (@14), how can that be a “little known belief”, given that you’ve pasted that paragraph into comments on this blog no fewer than eight times?”

    “little known belief” was used on this particular blog thread only once. It’s not a paragraph tODD, its a comment within a paragraph! LOL

    You must have a great deal of time to run about, trying to ONCE AGAIN NITPICK my posts –

    A very silly occupation, or hobby! LOL

  • Grace

    tODD “Grace (@14), how can that be a “little known belief”, given that you’ve pasted that paragraph into comments on this blog no fewer than eight times?”

    “little known belief” was used on this particular blog thread only once. It’s not a paragraph tODD, its a comment within a paragraph! LOL

    You must have a great deal of time to run about, trying to ONCE AGAIN NITPICK my posts –

    A very silly occupation, or hobby! LOL

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@21), you’re just not very good at reading comprehension, sad to say.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@21), you’re just not very good at reading comprehension, sad to say.


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