Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Son of God, Birth and Conception of Jesus, Mormons and the Trinity

What is the Mormon Church's take on the Trinity?
I may be one of the few members of my Church who has studied the Council of Nicaea (thanks to a degree in Medieval Art History from BYU--not very handy in my daily routine, but it was handy today when I could pull A.H.M. Jones' The Decline of the Ancient World off my shelf for reference). Although I am far from expert, my understanding is that most Christians believe in a oneness of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost, but we believe that they are three separate entities, with the Father and the Son having bodies of flesh and bone, whereas the Holy Spirit is just that, a Spirit.  The Godhead, the term we use in place of "Trinity," is One in purpose--helping direct fallen man back to live in Heaven, with the Son and the Holy Spirit always doing the will of the Father.

What does the Mormon Church teach about the conception and birth of Jesus?
Who do Mormons say Jesus Christ is? THE Son of God or A son of God?
We believe that Jesus Christ is THE literal Son of God, "the firstbegotten into the world" (Hebrews 1:6).  Mary, Jesus' mother and a virgin, miraculously conceived a Child--the Messiah, the One Anointed to become our Savior.  How this happened no man knows, but I consider Christ's mother one of my personal heroes.  Imagine her struggles--coming from a small village, engaged to be married, and she's suddenly, inexplicably pregnant.  Think of the ridicule and the loneliness.  I can't imagine her suffering and her strength to endure.  We do not worship Mary as other churches do, but I am so thankful she was willing to fulfill what was asked of her.

One of our most beloved songs, one that many consider to be almost our Church's anthem and a lullaby I've sung to all my babies, is "I Am a Child of God."  Although we as Mormons believe that we are all children of a loving, personal Heavenly Father, we know that there is only One--Only Begotten Son in the Flesh.  Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, the literal Son of His Father, born into mortality to fulfill all righteousness.  Born to fulfill the will of His Father, completely and fully.  His is THE Son of THE eternal God, His Father and Father of us all.

Let me conclude this post with the words of another of my personal heroes--Jeffrey Holland, currently serving as an apostle for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Here are his words about our belief in Jesus Christ, THE Son of God:
I could never fully explain Jesus Christ and His role in my life and what I owe Him.  I hope this answers your questions.  Feel free to ask further questions or leave comments of your own today.

Third post in a series of five:
Tomorrow:  The Bible and Other Sacred Texts
Friday:  Eternal Families


  1. That's very interesting about God and Jesus being flesh and bones. I've never thought of them in that way, but it actually makes sense. Particularly in thinking about Heaven on Earth, or the new Earth. It definitely would be easier to explain them to my children that way as well. What would you recommend reading to understand that belief more? Thanks for this series. I truly respect your willingness to be so open.

  2. What a clear explanation - and I learned something here. I can't get the sound to work on my laptop, so will have to wait for my tech-support (daughter or husband!) and come back to listen.


    I love this!!!

  4. Wow. This is actually John's wife Tawnie. I admire that you are taking the week to answer questions and share your testimony. Thank you!!!!

  5. I think you are just amazing. Thanks for sharing.

  6. You are doing a great job with this series!


  7. Catholics don't worship Mary; they venerate, or honor, her. She is considered the first saint, and the mother of Jesus, so she should be so honored!
    I love all this information. Thanks!

  8. Great job, Jen! I continue to take notes...

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  10. I really appreciate the honesty in your answers. I was born in Utah with pioneer ancestry. I was raised LDS and made the 'decision' to be baptized at age 8. I don't mean to be facetious by quoting the word decision. However it's hard to choose any other way when it's ALL you know and/or exposed to with such little life experience. I decided to leave the LDS church in 2005 at age 28. I really think it all comes down to if you believe The Book of Mormon or not. After reading it several times with prayer, I decided I did not believe any of it. However I've come to embrace the Bible as the word of God alone. As far as general authorities of the church, I understand you don't worship or pray to them, nor did I as an active LDS member. My belief as a Christian (non LDS)is that I CAN and DO have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and he speaks to ME as opposed to speaking to a general authority who will then relay the message twice a year in general conference. To me, those are the main differences (although there are SO MANY more)in being an active LDS(Mormon)member vs. a Christian who believes in the Bible alone. Again, I really think it all comes down to if you believe the Book of Mormon as another testament of Jesus Christ. I encourage anyone who is truly interested in the LDS religion to just read and study the Book of Mormon and decide for themselves.

  11. I'm sorry for being so behind with reading the rest of this series! This has been another interesting post for me since I, too believe that God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are 3 separate entities. I'm trying really hard to remember if I was taught that or if that was something that I believe myself. I do recall that my Catholic teachers refer to them as a Trinity and that they are essentially one entity but it has been a long time since I've thought about the teachings so my memory may be inaccurate.

    One thing I'm found interesting is that you believe that God himself had a body of flesh and bone. I had always thought that God himself was also a spirit, that he had no body, which is why he sent his only son, Jesus, to earth.

    This has been most inspiring to read and very thought provoking :)