Mosiah 15:4


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1 hour ago, askandanswer said:

Does the use of the pronoun they in this verse add support to the idea that Jesus and His Father are, collectively, one God?

It's an interesting question.  In our day, we emphasize that each member of the Godhead is a distinct individual, but all united in purpose.  In no small part, this is to counter the false teaching of the Trinity.  The Book of Mormon people had never heard of the Trinity, but being from among the Jews, the idea of only one God would have been hyper-important to them.  This is reflected in the Book of Mormon text where, despite knowing of each member of the Godhead, they seem to go out of their way to emphasize that there is only one God.  There's no telling whether, in their heads, they thought of three distinct persons, each being God, or whether they thought of three distinct persons acting together as a "God-unit", or something else entirely.

The fact is that They are one, so each individual is God, and any subset of Them is God, and all of Them together are God.  (And trying to figure out / remember the capitalization rules is making me wish I was born in Germany...)

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1 hour ago, askandanswer said:

4 And they are aone God, yea, the very bEternal cFather of heaven and of earth.

Does the use of the pronoun they in this verse add support to the idea that Jesus and His Father are, collectively, one God?

 

Think of "they" in context of an organization.

 

Example:  Officer Mirkwood works in Utah.  He is part of the police.  They work together to solve crimes.

 

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Posted (edited)

So is it the case that the term God is both a collective noun, referring to one organisation consisting of three Gods and a personal pronoun, referring to each member of that organisation?

And now I'm starting to wonder where God's wife fits into things, and Christ's wife. What is their part or role? Is God, in the collective sense, composed of 5 individuals? Or perhaps God and His wife count as one individual and Christ and His wife count as one individual?

Edited by askandanswer
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15 minutes ago, askandanswer said:

So is it the case that the term God is both a collective noun, referring to one organisation consisting of three Gods and a personal pronoun, referring to each member of that organisation?

And now I'm starting to wonder where God's wife fits into things, and Christ's wife. What is their part or role? Is God, in the collective sense, composed of 5 individuals? Or perhaps God and His wife count as one individual and Christ and His wife count as one individual?

Perhaps plan a temple trip and do some husband-wife sealings while pondering this question. Good way to gain insight, I think. 

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3 hours ago, askandanswer said:

4 And they are aone God, yea, the very bEternal cFather of heaven and of earth.

Does the use of the pronoun they in this verse add support to the idea that Jesus and His Father are, collectively, one God?

We need to realize that the context of this scripture is deeply rooted in the Hebrew culture and language even though the text is written in Reformed Egyptian.   From the context of near Eastern culture, we learn that the preferred styles of government were patterned after their ancient understanding that the government of Heaven was properly called a “Kingdom”.  That the kingdom of Heaven was ruled by a supreme Suzerain.  From near Eastern kingdoms often had levels of citizenship.   Only the “First Born” (Meaning the most noble or highest rank of citizens fell under the direct relationship with the Suzerain.  As a side note here, these high citizens had a unique name by which they addressed the Suzerain that no one else was allowed to use.  There are many references in scripture about the first-born citizens.  One reference is referenced with the final miracle of Moses when obtaining the deliverance of the Israelites.

Other classes of Citizens were under the jurisdiction of what was called the Servant Vassel.   According to the law of the kingdom the Servant Vassel was said to have inherited all that the Suzerain had in dealing with their Jurisdiction within the Kingdom.  As such they claimed to be one Suzerain or one with the Suzerain.  Often, they would speak to their jurisdiction in the first person as the Suzerain.  Under this law of a Kingdom, it was said that there was one Suzerain.  The Hebrew word to designate “one” is ehad.  This is the same Hebrew word that designates that a man and a woman become one flesh when married according to G-d’s law.  The Hebrew word that designates a unique single individual is yahed.  Whenever Hebrew scripture referenced the “oneness” of G-d the word ehad is always used.  There is no reference – ever – that Hebrew scripture uses the term yahed in referencing one G-d.

When the fall of man (Adam and Eve) took place all of the covenant spirit children of the Father (Suzerain of Heaven) became fallen or exiled citizens of Heaven and therefore were under the jurisdiction of a Servant Vassel that was the Messiah or Christ that was anciently known as Jehovah and the man Jesus of Nazareth.

When the Apostles chosen by Jesus to oversee the kingdom of G-d (church) on earth there were lost to the Church there was a shift in the stylized government of the church.  This shift patterned the church structure after the government of Rome.  To justify this gross alteration a counsel met and created the doctrine of the “Trinity” that was forced on “Christians” under penalty of death and it has remained ever since.  

Perhaps the best witness in scripture of the proper concept of oneness is in the Gospel of John chapter 17 when Jesus prays in Gethsemane as part of his Atonement that those that believe on him (as the Servant Vassel to the Suzerain) would become one with the Father in the same manner that He is one with the Father.  Obviously meaning that those that believe in Christ will no longer be exiled but full citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven as Servant Vassals of the Father.  I would note that in John chapter 10 that when Jesus said he was one with the Father – the Jews clearly understood that Jesus was referring to himself as G-d and that is why they intended to put Jesus to death.  Many Christians claim that they are one with G-d in one breath but then in the next breath claim there is only one (yahed) G-d and that the Trinity doctrine is valid.  Obviously, they do not know what they are saying.

 

The Traveler

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3 hours ago, askandanswer said:

4 And they are aone God, yea, the very bEternal cFather of heaven and of earth.

Does the use of the pronoun they in this verse add support to the idea that Jesus and His Father are, collectively, one God?

Yes, in that they function as one God, the very Eternal Father of haven and earth. They do have separate roles (with the Holy Ghost), and Christ sometimes speaks by divine investiture of authority as well. I'm sure they have a broader council as well, depending on what they need to do.

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To echo what @Traveler stated above, up until recently (and possibly still today in some locations) the Ruler of a Nation and certain individuals under them would be counted as the same individual in some instances.

In some Middle Eastern Cultures slavery was common.  There were slaves that were your right hand of power and control (probably somewhat like what Joseph was in Egypt).  These slaves were seen as basically part of you.  They were extensions of your voice and will.  Whatever they said was what YOU were saying.  To defy them was to defy YOU.  When they came, they would be seen as YOU in the flesh and treated as such.  For all intents and purposes, unless you were together, they would be seen as you in many instances (obviously NOT YOU, but also because of their position to act in your place, basically as you). 

In this dynamic we see some classes of slaves as a HIGHER class in society than freemen.  This is because the slaves reported directly to the ruler and as such, were held in higher esteem than those who were not part of this slave class. 

This was most often seen with slaves (as they were owned totally by their master and as such, when loyal, were seen as an extension of that master.  A slave could be killed at whim if they disobeyed or did what their master did not desire...whereas a free servant was not so easily done away with), however, on occasion it could also be seen as done with a servant as well.

On occasion this is also done with Dynastic rulership where the Son is considered an extension of the ruler. 

Not entirely the same, but a similar vein could be seen with Young King Henry who was crowned King under his father King Henry II.  He was King, but his father had the reins of power.  Now, he didn't have as close or as good a relationship as those I spoke of above, but when he was acting in line with his father's wishes, the easiest way for people to talk about them and who they were differently was relating in a way such as one was the king and the other was the young king.  (Interestingly enough, as Young King Henry died before his father, he is not counted among the Kingly line of Kings of England).

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Think of this in context. 

Jehovah was the God of the Old Testament, and I'm sure the average member of the Church didn't think much past that.  Most people even now, aren't that technical.

In modern times, even among us Church members we refer to God all the time.  But most people don't really think through which member of the Godhead they are referring to.

Edited by mrmarklin
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On 3/13/2024 at 3:33 PM, askandanswer said:

4 And they are aone God, yea, the very bEternal cFather of heaven and of earth.

Does the use of the pronoun they in this verse add support to the idea that Jesus and His Father are, collectively, one God?

The expression “they are one God” in verse 4 is referring specifically to Christ in his simultaneous roles as the Only Begotten Son of God in the flesh, the Creator (Father) of all things in heaven and earth when an unembodied Spirit, and the Father of salvation through the atonement to all who believe on his name. Hopefully, the following annotated verses will help make things clear…

3 The Father (Christ is here being referred to as the Father of our of salvation) because he was conceived by the power of God (I.e. Christ was endowed with the divine power needed in order to successfully offer an infinite and eternal atoning sacrifice while in the flesh); and the Son, because of the flesh (the same person whom we call the Father of heaven and earth and the Father of our salvation is also be called the Son of God because he is the literal earthly Son of Elohim); thus becoming the Father and Son (the Father because he is the Father of heaven and earth, as well as the Father of our salvation through the atonement, and he is also the Son because Elohim is the literal Father of his earthly body).

4 And they (i.e. the Father of heaven and earth, the Father of our salvation, and the Son of God in the flesh) are one God (in this particular instance the prophet is speaking of only one personage, namely Jesus Christ), yea, the very Eternal Father of heaven and of earth. (Mosiah 15)

These seemingly inscrutable words of Abinadi become clear when it’s understood that in these verses the prophet is  speaking of Christ in his dual fatherly role as the Father of heaven and earth, and even more especially as the atoning Father of salvation.

 

 

Edited by Jersey Boy
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Ether 3: 14 Behold, I am he who was prepared from the foundation of the world to redeem my people. Behold, I am Jesus Christ. I am the Father and the Son. In me shall all mankind have life, and that eternally, even they who shall believe on my name; and they shall become my sons and my daughters.

15 And never have I showed myself unto man whom I have created, for never has man believed in me as thou hast. Seest thou that ye are created after mine own image? Yea, even all men were created in the beginning after mine own image.

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