Sunday, February 1, 2009

If only the Bible ended on page 5

If only Moses had put down his pen in the middle of Genesis, Chapter 3!

After all, the Creation story had been told and the Fall, too, of mankind. The enemy of righteousness had even been introduced. What more was there to say?

Surprisingly, I fail to find a single sect anywhere that would take that drastic a set of scissors to the scriptures, although most of religious history has been a dreary tale of people trying to tell God that He could no longer add to His word, drawing lines in the scriptural sand that they forbid Him to cross.

If the Bible ended in Genesis 3, circa verse 13, then the critics of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ might indeed have a valid point when they attack the doctrine of humanity's birthright as children of a Heavenly Father, our destiny, through the grace of His Son, to become like Him.

You see, page one of the Anti-Mormon Handbook generally goes something like this:

"Satan told Eve that if she ate of the forbidden fruit, then she would become like God, knowing good from evil. This was a lie, the Big Lie -- and those wicked Mormons are deluded by it, too."

Unfortunately for the critics of the doctrine of theosis, the Bible doesn't end with Satan's sneaky little speech. And, in fact, it is God Himself, in verse 22, who throws a wrench in their gears.

For God Himself declares: "Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil."

Is this still the Big Lie? Obviously not.

If Satan never told a truth, or mixed truth with lies, he would be far less convincing. His very important omission, in his words to Eve, was that even though knowing good from evil is indeed the first step to becoming like God, a lot more is involved in order for us to get there. Important things like repentance, obedience, ordinances and the grace of Christ. Hence, the expulsion of Adam and Eve from the Garden that they might not eat of the fruit of the tree of life without having done any of the above. Immortal beings they would indeed have become, but cut off from God, spiritually still-born.

We are indeed the offspring of God, as Paul declared. And someday we may see Him and be like Him and inherit everything that He has, as joint-heirs with Christ, as the New Testament teaches repeatedly.