By Samuel R. Weber
Samuel R. Weber is a psychiatrist practicing in Utah. He has previously published in the fields of Mormon history, religion, and mental health. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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As a college student at Utah State University from 2004–2007, I attended a class at the Logan LDS Institute of Religion in which the teacher unequivocally asserted that Adam and Eve were physically begotten children of God.
This was the first time that many of us had ever heard such an idea, despite lifelong membership in the Church. The instructor assured the class that this was official Church doctrine, albeit a lesser discussed one. Reinforcing the importance of this concept, the course’s final exam included the following fill-in-the blank question: “Heavenly Father was the father of Adam’s _____ body as well as his _____ body.” The correct answers were “spirit” and “physical.”2
As I found out later, this particular teaching has a complex lineage, originating in early Mormon teachings that were ultimately rejected but living on in fragments when it was needed to answer theological questions posed by biological evolution. Today it seems to survive primarily in the Church Educational System.
Origins with Brigham Young and Adam-God
The concept of Adam and Eve being physical children of God has its roots in Brigham Young’s “Adam-God” teachings. Joseph Smith and his associates laid some of the groundwork for Adam-God by attributing an expanded celestial role to Adam and emphasizing the kinship of humankind with deity,3 but Young took the next steps in doctrinal innovation. Beginning in 1852 he taught the innovative but controversial idea that Adam and Eve had previously experienced mortality, achieved exalted god-status, bore spirit children, and became the gods of planet earth. In Young’s first published sermon espousing this doctrine, Adam was famously identified as being “our father and our God, and the only God with whom we have to do.”4
Young supported this theory first by teaching that human life was transplanted from another world. In 1856 he declared: “Adam was made from the dust of an earth, but not from the dust of this earth.”5 Speaking in the Salt Lake Tabernacle in 1859, Young stated: “Mankind are here because they are offspring of parents who were first brought here from another planet.”6
Second, Young taught that humans began life as the products of a natural birthing process, and not molded from the dust of the ground. “When you tell me that father Adam was made as we make adobes from the earth, you tell me what I deem an idle tale.”7 “[God] created man, as we create our children;” he said, “for there is no other process of creation in heaven, on the earth, in the earth, or under the earth, or in all the eternities, that is, that were, or that ever will be.”8
Third, Young laid the foundation for teaching that the mortal bodies of humans were the result of godly reproduction.
Man is the offspring of God. . . . We are as much the children of this great Being as we are the children of our mortal progenitors. We are flesh of his flesh, bone of his bone, and the same fluid that circulates in our bodies, called blood, once circulated in His veins as it does in ours. As the seeds of grains, vegetables and fruits produce their kind, so man is in the image of God.9
Heber C. Kimball, first counselor to Brigham Young, also taught that mortal “bodies were formed by [God], and through him, and of him, just as much as the spirit was . . . I came through him, both spirit and body.”10 Although Young and his associates were likely referring to human bodies descending from Adam-God, these statements could later be reinterpreted by others who rejected Adam-God to mean that God literally fathered the bodies of the first humans on Earth: Adam and Eve.
In an 1852 sermon, Young explained that in order for Adam-God and Eve-God to bear children on this earth, they had to “continue to eat and drink of the fruits of the corporeal world, until this grosser matter is diffused sufficiently through their celestial bodies to enable them, according to the established laws, to produce mortal tabernacles for their spiritual children.”11
Young and his associates indicated that the ability to bear both spirit and physical children was a special endowment related to achieving godhood. Speaking in 1872, Young taught: “And when our spirits receive our bodies, and through our faithfulness we are worthy to be crowned, we will then receive authority to produce both spirit and body.”12
Young emphasized that men and God were of the same family and species. Even while verbally backing off from strongly worded identifications of Adam as God, Young taught in 1857: “[God] is a being of the species as ourselves . . . it is no matter whether we are to consider [Adam] our God, or whether His Father, or His Grandfather, for in either case we are of one species—of one family—and Jesus Christ is also of our species.”13
Although Young’s Adam-God theory has not survived as a lasting part of Mormon doctrine, it was not wholly a theological “dead-end” as asserted by Mormon author Terryl Givens.14 Fragments of Adam-God would be echoed by subsequent church leaders and teachers to describe Adam and Eve’s godly lineage.
Renewed Emphasis in Opposition to Evolution
Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, introduced to most of the world by his 1859 text On the Origin of Species, implied the question, “If evolution by natural selection explains the descent of homo sapiens, then what is to be made of Adam and Eve?” While disavowing the Adam-God theory, Joseph F. Smith and his First Presidency responded to questions about evolution by reiterating many of the principles established in Young’s theology: that Adam and Eve were transplanted from another planet, that they were the product of a natural birth, and that God was their parent.
Although Joseph F. Smith apparently accepted the Adam-God theory early in his career,15 he later publicly backed away from it, at one time writing,
The doctrine was never submitted to the councils of the Priesthood nor to the church for approval or ratification, and was never formally or otherwise accepted by the church. It is therefore in no sense binding upon the Church.16
Despite such public disavowal, many contemporary church leaders nevertheless employed Adam-God rhetoric in their statements opposing evolutionary teachings. B. H. Roberts wrote in 1901 that “We are all ‘formed’ of the dust of the ground, though instead of being moulded as a brick we are brought forth by the natural laws of procreation; so also was Adam and his wife in some older world.”17 In a 1913 stake conference, Joseph F. Smith said: “Adam, our earthly parent, was also born of woman into this world, the same as Jesus and you and I.”18 George Q. Cannon similarly preferred to think of God as man’s ultimate progenitor: “We did not have monkeys for ancestors, nor any inferior order of beings . . . We descended from God.”19
In 1909, the fiftieth anniversary of On the Origin of Species, a First Presidency statement titled “The Origin of Man” tangentially referenced the concept of mankind physically descending from the gods.20 Though not outright denying evolutionary claims, the statement presented a clear anti-evolutionary slant. Further questions on the matter led Smith’s First Presidency to publish a statement the following year that left some room for evolution:
Whether the mortal bodies of man evolved in natural processes to present perfection through the direction and power of God; whether the first parents of our generations, Adam and Eve, were transplanted from another sphere, with immortal tabernacles, which became corrupted through sin and the partaking of natural foods, in the process of time; whether they were born here in mortality, as other mortals have been, are questions not fully answered in the revealed word of God. 21
However, other Church publications released that same year openly discarded evolution in preference to God fathering the bodies of men. B. H. Roberts wrote in the 1910 Course of Study for Priests: “Man has descended from God; in fact, he is of the same race as the Gods. His descent has not been from a lower form of life, but from the Highest Form of Life: in other words, man is, in the most literal sense, a child of God. This is not only true of the spirit but of his body also.”22 In general conference over a decade later, apostle George Albert Smith similarly spoke out against evolution, preferring instead a divine ancestry: “[M]an came, not as some have believed, not as some have preferred to believe, from some of the lower walks of life, but our ancestors were those beings who lived in the courts of heaven. We came not from some menial order of life, but our ancestor is God our heavenly Father.”23
Inclusion by Later Authorities
Subsequent church authorities found reason to incorporate these teachings into their own sermons and writings. Particularly noteworthy were Joseph Fielding Smith and Bruce R. McConkie, two Church authorities (related by marriage) whose prolific writings took strides toward synthesizing the mass of past Church teachings into a more comprehensive, systematized theology. Both men vehemently opposed Young’s doctrine that Adam is God,24 but espoused the related teaching that Adam and Eve were physically and spiritually God’s children.25
However, the pair also recognized that scriptural references to Jesus Christ being the “Only Begotten” of God the Father posed a problem for this theory. In his compendium Mormon Doctrine, under the entry for “Son of God,” McConkie presented a linguistic “loophole” that allowed Adam and Eve to be born of God while still giving special status to Christ’s birth. “Father Adam, the first man, is also a son of God (Luke 3:38; Moses 6:22, 59), a fact that does not change the great truth that Christ is the Only Begotten in the flesh, for Adam’s entrance into this world was in immortality. He came here before death had its beginning, with its consequent mortal or flesh-status of existence.”26
Although McConkie did not invent the phrase “Only Begotten in the flesh,”27 he gave the clearest and most direct description of its implications. Additionally, McConkie’s writings were popular and likely gave the phrase wider exposure than it otherwise would have had, especially since it does not appear anywhere within the current LDS canon.
In the early 1930s, Joseph Fielding Smith became embroiled in contentious discussions with other Church leaders who were more open to evolutionary ideas, including seventy B. H. Roberts and apostle James E. Talmage. Roberts and Talmage were open to scientific evidence for death before Adam and the existence of pre-Adamic humanoids, though they still preferred to think of Adam as the product of special creation.28 In his anti-evolution magnum opus Man: His Origin and Destiny, Smith ridiculed the idea of a lengthy evolutionary process, posing the rhetorical question: “Why [wouldn’t God take] the shorter route and transplant them [Adam and Eve] from another earth as we are taught from the scriptures?”29
Persistence Within the Church Educational System
Despite its history, declarations of Adam and Eve’s godly parentage cannot be found among present-day LDS apostolic teachings. Although never a dominant theme, Adam-as-God’s-son appears to have completely disappeared from Church discourse by the 1980s. Perhaps this was due to the Church’s heightened awareness of public relations and desire for acceptance within the broader Christian community.30 Or perhaps, in the face of a rising tide of feminism, current Church leaders are reluctant to expound on the roles or responsibilities of Heavenly Mother as a literal mother.31 Also, given that acceptance of evolutionary biology is on the rise within the Church and is taught at Church-owned schools, the perceived need to provide alternate theories of mankind’s origin has lessened.32 Presently, the theory of Adam and Eve’s divine bodily heritage is not widely known or accepted by twenty-first century Latter-day Saints, is not taught in church or general conference settings, and would probably be considered outside the mainstream of modern Mormonism—with one apparent exception: within the Church Educational System.
In his book God, Man and the Universe (1968), religion teacher Hyrum L. Andrus33 echoed Adam-God teachings about transplantation:
First, it is held that man and the animals were organized physically by the process of procreation; plant life by germination from seeds. Second, the parent life from which the initial earth forms came existed on another sphere . . . the stream of life is eternally flowing from redeemed and glorified worlds to newly organized ones. Procreation and transplantation are the two main keys to an understanding of the origin of life on a given sphere.34
Andrus also emphasized man’s literal physical descent from God in his Doctrinal Commentary on the Pearl of Great Price:
Man’s pure, original, sanctified physical body descended from God, as the offspring of God, inheriting in birth the physical image, likeness, and attributes of his exalted parents . . . procreation is the key to the origin of human life, so far as the method of its organization is concerned, and transplantation is the key to how man arrived on earth.35
Keith H. Meservy, an associate professor of ancient scripture at BYU, delivered an address as part of the Church Educational System Religious Educator’s Symposium in 1979 asserting that “the prophets have taught that spiritual as well as physical procreation of their own species by the gods is the true explanation of the origin of man.”36
In his 1990 book A Bible! A Bible!, Robert J. Matthews37 testified to a belief in the celestial genealogy of Adam and Eve’s physical bodies. He also used the phrase “Only Begotten in the flesh” as found in the writings of Bruce R. McConkie to distinguish Adam’s parentage from Christ’s.
I believe that Adam’s physical body was the offspring of God, literally (Moses 6:22); that he was begotten as a baby with a physical body not subject to death, in a world without sin or blood; and that he grew to manhood in that condition and then became mortal through his own actions. I believe that Adam’s physical body was begotten by our immortal celestial Father and an immortal celestial Mother, and thus not into a condition of mortality, a condition which would have precluded Jesus from being the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh (D&C 93:11)–flesh meaning mortality. Jesus’ physical body was also begotten of the same celestial Father but through a mortal woman and hence into mortality.”38
Similarly, Joseph Fielding McConkie39 (a professor of ancient scripture at BYU) published a volume in 1996 with Robert L. Millet (a professor of ancient scripture still teaching at BYU) indicating a belief in Adam’s physical birth to heavenly parents. They quoted the statement in Moses 6:22 that Adam is “the son of God,” then affirmed: “[W]e are without justification to suppose that this is a figurative declaration.”40 In another volume published two years later, Joseph Fielding McConkie again referenced the godly parentage of Adam’s body: “Because Adam was the son of divine parents, he had an immortal body.”41
There are hints that Mormon luminary Hugh Nibley privately harbored at least some belief in Adam-God teachings. In a 1980 address given at BYU titled “Before Adam,” he did not deny the existence of pre-Adamic humanoids,42 but stated that Adam’s descendants “are the sons of Adam, who also qualify as sons of God, Adam himself being a son of God.” Nibley also hints at Adam and Eve having been transplanted from another planet, adding, “Whether former speculation about life on other worlds is now to be upgraded to life from other worlds remains to be seen, but Adam is wonderful enough without that.” More directly addressing Adam-God, Nibley stated: “And one of our biggest stumbling blocks is not knowing how Adam relates to other beings, earthly and heavenly. That is the root of the Adam-God misunderstanding. (Until we care to look into the matter seriously, I will keep my opinions in a low profile.)”43 His statement implies that the Adam-God doctrine may have been misunderstood rather than being out-and-out false. He also implies some privately held beliefs on the matter. Nibley’s son-in-law and biographer Boyd Petersen spoke of this in a 2013 interview. When asked whether Nibley may have privately believed in Adam-God teachings, Petersen replied,
I never heard him say, “I believe in the Adam-God doctrine” . . . I thought, “Why hasn’t he addressed that issue [Adam-God]?” And so I asked him . . . and he said, “Oh, I never think about that.” And he just didn’t want to talk about it, he said, “Well, let me revise that: I don’t talk about that.” . . . in several of his Brigham Young writings [he said] that he felt like Brigham Young was a better theologian than he’s been given credit for. So . . . my gut feeling is that he had very strong sympathies for that theology.44
As I related in the introduction, as a student in the Logan LDS Institute of Religion in 2005, I was taught that Adam and Eve were physically begotten children of God. Explaining the doctrine, the teacher drew upon Brigham Young’s Adam-God teachings by maintaining that God the Father and God the Mother partook of the fruit of this earth until their bodies were “charged with it” in order to produce offspring suited to this planet.45 He also drew from the anti-evolution rhetoric of Joseph F. Smith’s presidency, insisting that the 1909 “Origin of Man” statement provided a clear doctrinal basis for mankind being God’s bodily offspring. When asked to explain how Adam’s divine birth would be distinguished from Christ’s, the instructor repeated the “Only Begotten in the flesh” explanation provided by Bruce R. McConkie.46
After the Institute class concluded, I became curious whether other Institute teachers shared this theory of Adam’s parentage, or whether my previous teacher represented an isolated case. I met one-on-one with five additional Logan Institute teachers and asked their thoughts on the idea. I found that none of them were particularly sympathetic toward evolution, and all of them were either familiar with the idea, or appeared to believe, that Adam was literally born of God. Some of these teachers possessed compilations of statements from past Church leaders that aligned with this view of humanity’s origin (many of which have been quoted above).47
That this theory of Adam’s genealogy may continue to hold influence within some quarters of the Church Educational System is evidenced by a simple Google search. Class reference materials for BYU-Idaho that support this view can easily be found online.48
The persistence of this theory within CES may be due to a number of factors. Within LDS culture, quotes from Church leaders are typically given primacy in establishing valid doctrine, which may leave CES instructors familiar with some of these statements feeling compelled to accept them as doctrinally binding. Church educators may view themselves as gatekeepers of some “mysteries of the kingdom,” knowing more than the common Church member but feeling obligated to keep it secret in order not to cast “pearls before swine” (Matthew 7:6). This idea of the CES instructor maintaining a sacred silence while still ensuring the survival of the doctrine was promoted by Keith H. Meservy when he said that “It is important that we teach correctly even if we are not always able to teach as plainly as we might want to.”49 Lastly, there may simply be a strong internal tradition of accepting this viewpoint on man’s origin, as evidenced by a thread of Church educators endorsing it across multiple decades.
Despite outward signs of this teaching expiring in present-day authoritative discourse and the corresponding lack of familiarity with it among the general Church membership, the belief that God fathered Adam and Eve’s physical bodies appears to still be extant within the LDS Church Educational System. In this way, shards of the discarded Adam-God theory live on.
- The author would like to express his appreciation to Christopher Blythe, Amberly Dattilo, Matthew Jorgensen, Stephanie Dawson Pack, and Hilary Weber who read drafts of this paper and offered their critiques.
- Author’s recollection.
- Lorenzo Snow’s couplet summarizes the proximal relationship Joseph Smith established between man and God: “As man now is, God once was; As God now is, man may be.” Lorenzo Snow, Millennial Star 54 (June 1892): 404. For more on Joseph Smith’s expansion of Adam’s divine importance, see Terryl L. Givens, Wrestling the Angel: The Foundations of Mormon Thought: Cosmos, God, Humanity (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015), 112–116. See also Samuel Brown, “William Phelps’s Paracletes, an Early Witness to Joseph Smith’s Divine Anthropology,” International Journal of Mormon Studies 2 (Spring 2009): 62–82.
- Journal of Discourses by Brigham Young, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, His Two Counsellors, the Twelve Apostles, and Others, vol. 1 (Liverpool: LDS Book Depot, 1855-86), 50 (hereafter cited as JD). Although a mixed reception to this teaching among Church members and leaders led Young to be less vocal about Adam-God teachings in his later years, Young did espouse the doctrine publicly as late as 1873 and incorporated Adam-God principles in the Saint George temple’s “lecture at the veil” in 1877 shortly before his death. See David John Buerger, “The Adam-God Doctrine,” Dialogue 15, no. 1 (Spring 1982): 14–58.
- JD 3:319
- JD 7:285
- JD 7:285
- JD 11:122; cf. JD 3:319
- JD 9:283
- JD 6:31.
- JD 6:275; cf. JD 4:218
- JD 15:137
- JD 4:217; cf. JD 13:311
- Terryl L. Givens, Wrestling the Angel: The Foundations of Mormon Thought: Cosmos, God, Humanity (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015), 112.
- Joseph F. Smith reported that “the enunciation of that doctrine gave him great joy.” Salt Lake School of the Prophets Minute Book, entry for 9 June 1873, LDS Archives, quoted in David John Buerger, “The Adam-God Doctrine,” Dialogue 15, no. 1 (Spring 1982): 14–58.
- Joseph F. Smith, letter to A. Saxey, 7 January 1897, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah.
- B. H. Roberts, The Gospel: An Exposition of Its First Principles; and Man’s Relationship to Deity, third edition (Salt Lake City: The Deseret News, 1901), 280.
- “Gala Days in History of Arizona Stakes,” Deseret Evening News (27 December 1913): sec. 3, p. 7. Cf. JD 25:53 and Letter to President Samuel O. Bennion from the First Presidency, 20 February 1912, quoted in James R. Clark, Messages of the First Presidency, Vol. 4 (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1970), 266.
- The Juvenile Instructor vol. 27, no. 23 (1 December 1892): 720.
- “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.” Editor’s Table, “The Origin of Man,” by the First Presidency of the Church, Improvement Era, Vol. 13, No. 1 (November 1909): 81.
- Priesthood Quorum’s Table, Improvement Era, Vol. 13, No. 6 (April 1910), 570.
- B. H. Roberts, Course of Study for Priests (1910), 35, quoted in Jerald R. Johansen, A Commentary on the Pearl of Great Price: A Jewel Among the Scriptures (Bountiful, UT: Horizon Publishers, 1985), 53.
- George Albert Smith, Conference Report (October 1925), 33.
- See, for example, Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, Volume I, comp. Bruce R. McConkie (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1954–56), 96–99. Bruce R. McConkie, “The Seven Deadly Heresies,” Brigham Young University Speeches, 1 June 1980.
- See, for example, Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, Volume I, comp. Bruce R. McConkie, (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1954–56), 101–103. See also Bruce R. McConkie, “Eve and the Fall,” in Woman (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1979), 60–61.
- Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1958), 670. See also Bruce R. McConkie, Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, Vol. 1 (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1965–73), 95.
- For example, it also appears in the 1909 “Origin of Man” statement and in the works of Joseph Fielding Smith.
- Richard Sherlock and Jeffrey E. Keller, “The B. H. Roberts/Joseph Fielding Smith/James E. Talmage Affair,” in The Search for Harmony (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1993), 93–115.
29Joseph Fielding Smith, Man: His Origin and Destiny (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1954), 276–277. For similar remarks, see Joseph Fielding Smith, Improvement Era, Vol. 23, No. 5 (March 1920): 392.
- As an example, when President Gordon B. Hinckley was asked in an interview for Time magazine whether the Church believes that God the Father was once a man, he responded: “I don’t know that we teach it. I don’t know that we emphasize it . . . I understand the philosophical background behind it, but I don’t know a lot about it, and I don’t think others know a lot about it.” David Van Biema, “Kingdom Come,” Time, 24 June 2001, http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,138108,00.html (accessed 17 November 2016).
- Apostle Boyd K. Packer famously identified the feminist movement as a danger to the Church. See Peggy Fletcher Stack, “Mormon Leader Boyd K. Packer Dies — A Man of Wit, Known for Tough Talk,” Salt Lake Tribune, 3 July 2015, http://www.sltrib.com/home/2694491-155/boyd-packer-dies-lds-church-confirms (accessed 17 November 2016). See also Margaret Merrill Toscano, “Is There a Place for Heavenly Mother in Mormon Theology? An Investigation into Discourses of Power,” Sunstone, July 2004, 14–22.
- The percentage of Mormons that accept evolution increased from 22% to 42% from 2008 to 2014, respectively. Compare “U.S. Religious Landscape Survey, Religious Beliefs and Practices: Diverse and Politically Relevant,” Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, http://www.pewforum.org/files/2008/06/report2-religious-landscape-study-full.pdf (accessed 27 September 2016) with “Religious Landscape Study: Views about human evolution,” Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, http://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/views-about-human-evolution/ (accessed 27 September 2016).
- Andrus was a director of religious studies at Ricks College who later became a professor of church history and doctrine at Brigham Young University.
- Hyrum L. Andrus, God, Man and the Universe (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1968), 350–351.
- Hyrum L. Andrus, Doctrinal Commentary on the Pearl of Great Price (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1973), 178–180.
- Keith H. Meservy, “Evolution and the Origin of Man,” Church Educational System Religious Educator’s Symposium, BYU, 1979, 10, transcript copy in author’s possession.
- Matthews began his career as a Seminary and Institute teacher and, after receiving a Ph.D. in ancient scriptures, taught in the Division of Religious Education at BYU. He was renowned for his scholarly work on the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible, and was the chief editor of the LDS Church’s 1979 Bible Dictionary.
- Robert J. Matthews, A Bible! A Bible! (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1990), 188.
- A son of apostle Bruce R. McConkie
- Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, Joseph Smith: The Choice Seer (Salt Lake City, Bookcraft: 1996), 108.
- Joseph Fielding McConkie, Answers: Straightforward Answers to Tough Gospel Questions (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1998), Kindle edition.
- “Do not begrudge existence to creatures that looked like men long, long ago,” he said, “nor deny them a place in God’s affection and even a right to exaltation—for our scriptures allow them such.”
- Hugh Nibley, “Before Adam,” http://publications.mi.byu.edu/fullscreen/?pub=997&index=1 (accessed 24 October 2016).
- Dan Wotherspoon, interview with Boyd Petersen, Mormon Matters, podcast audio, 26 August 2013, http://mormonmatters.org/podcast/MormonMatters-187.mp3 (accessed 18 June 2017).
- JD 4:218
- Author’s recollection.
- “Parenthood of Adam,” unpaginated photocopy in author’s possession; “The Creation and Placement of Life on the Earth,” unpaginated photocopy in author’s possession; “Inspired Statements on the Creation of Man,” unpaginated photocopy in author’s possession; “How was Adam Created?” unpaginated photocopy in author’s possession.
- See, for example, “The Creation of Adam,” http://emp.byui.edu/OpenshawR/Pearl%20of%20Great%20Price/Creation%20Of%20Adam.htm (accessed 11 September 2016); “Overview of the Plan of Salvation,” http://emp.byui.edu/huffr/Overview%20of%20the%20Plan%20of%20Salvation.htm (accessed 11 September 2016); “Statements on Adam and the Creation,” http://emp.byui.edu/openshawr/Class%20Articles/Adam%20and%20Creation%20Statements.htm (accessed September 11, 2016); “The Origin of Man & Organic Evolution,” http://emp.byui.edu/marrottr/originofman.htm (accessed 22 October 2016).
- Keith H. Meservy, “Evolution and the Origin of Man,” Church Educational System Religious Educator’s Symposium, BYU, 1979, 10, transcript copy in author’s possession.
Interesting, informative and well-written.
Here are my thoughts on the subject:
The premortal Christ is the creator or father of the physical bodies of Adam and Eve. He tells the Brother of Jared: “Behold, this body, which ye now behold, is the body of my spirit; and man have I created after the body of my spirit . . . ” (Ether 3:16) “For by the power of my Spirit created I them; yea, all things both spiritual and temporal.” (D&C 29:31. See also Mosiah 26:23; Alma 5:15; Isaiah 54:5, 1 Nephi 17:36, etc.) His creation of the physical bodies of Adam and Eve obviously is related to the fact that all mortal bodies come from the dust (or elements) of the earth, which he created. Because we are descendants of Adam and Eve, Christ is the first father of our physical bodies.
Very interesting. I think the idea comes from Luke 2:38 38 “Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.”
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