A statement by the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints "God created man in his own image, in
the image of God created he him; male and female created he them."
In these plain and pointed words the inspired author of the book
of Genesis made known to the world the truth concerning the origin
of the human family. Moses, the prophet-historian, who was "learned"
we are told, "in all the wisdom of the Egyptians," when
making this important announcement, was not voicing a mere opinion.
He was speaking as the mouthpiece of God, and his solemn declaration
was for all time and for all people. No subsequent revelator of
the truth has contradicted the great leader and law-giver of Israel.
All who have since spoken by divine authority upon this theme have
confirmed his simple and sublime proclamation. Nor could it be otherwise.
Truth has but one source, and all revelations from heaven are harmonious
one with the other. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is "the express
image" of his Father's person (Hebrews 1:3). He walked the
earth as a human being, as a perfect man, and said, in answer to
a question put to him: "He that hath seen me hath seen the
Father" (John 14:9). This alone ought to solve the problem
to the satisfaction of every thoughtful, reverent mind. It was in
this form that the Father and the Son, as two distinct personages,
appeared to Joseph Smith, when, as a boy of fourteen years, he received
his first vision.
The Father of Jesus Christ is our Father also. Jesus himself taught
this truth, when he instructed his disciples how to pray: "Our
Father which art in heaven," etc. Jesus, however, is the first
born among all the sons of Godthe first begotten in the spirit,
and the only begotten in the flesh. He is our elder brother, and
we, like him, are in the image of God. All men and women are in
the similitude of the universal Father and Mother, and are literally
sons and daughters of Deity.
Adam, our great progenitor, "the first man," was, like
Christ, a pre-existent spirit, and, like Christ, he took upon him
an appropriate body, the body of a man, and so became a "living
soul." The doctrine of pre-existence pours wonderful flood
of light upon the otherwise mysterious problem of man's origin.
It shows that man, as a spirit, was begotten and born of heavenly
parents, and reared to maturity in the eternal mansions of the Father,
prior to coming upon the earth in a temporal body to undergo an
experience in mortality.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, basing its belief
on divine revelation, ancient and modern, proclaims man to be the
direct and lineal offspring of Deity. By his Almighty power God
organized the earth, and all that it contains, from spirit and element,
which exist co-eternally with himself.
Man is the child of God, formed in the divine image and endowed
with divine attributes, and even as the infant son of an earthly
father and mother is capable in due time of becoming a man, so the
undeveloped offspring of celestial parentage is capable, by experience
through ages and aeons, of evolving into a God.
HEBER J. GRANT,
ANTHONY W. IVINS,
CHARLES W. NIBLEY,