Joseph and Moses
I do not believe that Joseph is a fallen prophet and he was definitely not a false prophet. Moses was not a fallen prophet when he gave the children of Israel the law of Moses. It is true that he was refused entry into the land of promise for transgression but he was fulfilling his role as the intercessor, so therefore he is covered by the grace of God. Proof of that is Moses appeared to Christ on the Mt of Transfiguration. The children of Israel were fallen not Moses.
In like manner the 2nd watch church are the ones who were fallen and not Joseph Smith. Joseph is the one like unto Moses, and God used him to give the fallen church polygamy and the masonic endowment which is their “law of Moses”. It is true that in the process of placing the church under their law of Moses Joseph committed sin but as the intercessor for the church he is covered in the grace of God. Proof of that is Joseph is coming back at the 3rd watch marvelous work to fulfill the promises made to him.
Joseph laments that there are those who believed that he is a fallen prophet and he takes this opportunity to declare that he is not a fallen prophet.
(King Follett Discourse, A Newly Amalgamated Text pg 14) I would to God that I had forty days and nights to talk, and to tell you all, to let you know that I am not a fallen prophet.
The 2nd watch church definitely was a fallen church. Just like the children of Israel when they rejected the Lord at Mt Sinai and then made themselves unworthy at the feet of the golden calf. The 2nd watch saints rejected the Lord when they failed to live the law of consecration, but the Lord did not utterly cast them off. At the dedication of the Kirtland Temple the Lord secretly placed them under the gospel of Abraham to replace the gospel of Christ, and they did not know it then, and do not know it now.
(D&C 101:2 – 9) 2 I, the Lord, have suffered the affliction to come upon them, wherewith they have been afflicted, in consequence of their transgressions; 3 Yet I will own them, and they shall be mine in that day when I shall come to make up my jewels. 4 Therefore, they must needs be chastened and tried, even as Abraham, who was commanded to offer up his only son. 5 For all those who will not endure chastening, but deny me, cannot be sanctified. 6 Behold, I say unto you, there were jarrings, and contentions, and envyings, and strifes, and lustful and covetous desires among them; therefore by these things they polluted their inheritances. 7 They were slow to hearken unto the voice of the Lord their God; therefore, the Lord their God is slow to hearken unto their prayers, to answer them in the day of their trouble. 8 In the day of their peace they esteemed lightly my counsel; but, in the day of their trouble, of necessity they feel after me. 9 Verily I say unto you, notwithstanding their sins, my bowels are filled with compassion towards them. I will not utterly cast them off; and in the day of wrath I will remember mercy.
Moses was used, by God, to give the children of Israel, the methods, practices and the form of worship that God required of them because of their fallen state, it was called the law of Moses. In like manner Joseph was used by God to give the 2nd watch church the method, practices and the form of worship that he will now require of the 2nd watch church in there fallen condition. The 2nd watch church was given polygamy and the masonic endowment as central to their worship in their new fallen society. Neither Joseph nor Moses taught false doctrine at anytime. Both were intercessors to their people. Both had received their calling and election and were covered in their sins by the grace of God.
The form of worship given the children of Israel under the law of Moses was designed to be a schoolmaster to point them to Christ. Was the law of Moses false? No, it was a fallen form of worship. The law of Moses was the schoolmaster, designed to bring them to Christ. The schoolmaster fulfilled it’s role in the generation that Christ came to the earth as the Savior of Mankind. Starting with John the Baptist preparing the way, followed by the Apostles and finally the thousands of saints who had been prepared by the schoolmaster and became justified by faith.
(Galatians 3:21 – 25) 21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. 22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. 23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
The latter-day church is also under a schoolmaster that began with the 2nd watch church. The LDS church today maintains and distributes the oracles throughout the world so that there will be a people prepared to receive Joseph and the Elders when they return and finish their work.
There are an increasing number of people being prepared to receive the servants of God. Their eyes are being opened, they are taking the scriptures, the oracles of God seriously. They are the ones who are ready to receive the fullness of the Gospel of Christ.
(D&C 35:10 – 12) 10 And the time speedily cometh that great things are to be shown forth unto the children of men; 11 But without faith shall not anything be shown forth except desolations upon Babylon, the same which has made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. 12 And there are none that doeth good except those who are ready to receive the fulness of my gospel, which I have sent forth unto this generation.
They are the humble followers of Christ, who have taken the scriptures for their guild, but since the fullness is not here yet, they do err because of the precepts of men.
(2 Nephi 28:14) 14 They wear stiff necks and high heads; yea, and because of pride, and wickedness, and abominations, and whoredoms, they have all gone astray save it be a few, who are the humble followers of Christ; nevertheless, they are led, that in many instances they do err because they are taught by the precepts of men.
God does not teach False Doctrine
God does not teach false doctrine, ever!! Satan teaches false doctrine. God’s church which is in apostasy changes the truth they are given into false doctrine, but the doctrine that comes from God to his people thru his prophets always begins as true doctrine.
The doctrine of the nature of God doesn’t change whether the people are under the gospel of Christ or the gospel of Abraham. The fact is, in John 5 Christ was explaining the true nature of God to the scribes, Pharisee and Sadducee, whom he described as the sons of Satan, so why shouldn’t Joseph Smith explain the true nature of God to the church in Nauvoo?
Over time the church under the covenant of the gospel of Abraham will pervert their understanding, thus creating false doctrine. God teaches truth line upon line but his wayward people will take that truth and fall backward. God can only teach truth and the people will change it into false doctrine and thereby they fall backwards.
(Isaiah 28:13) 13 But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.
The Church was not delivered up unto Satan, yet!
In the Book of Commandment God threatens that he would deliver this generation up unto Satan, not his apostate church. ‘This generation’ is referring to the last generation at the time of the 3rd watch marvelous work. These verses are a prophecy of the future. The 2nd watch church was not delivered up unto Satan, nor is the LDS church today. But they will be if they reject Joseph Smith when he returns with the gospel of Christ.
(Book of Commandments 4:5 – 6) 5 And thus, if the people of this generation harden not their hearts, I will work a reformation among them, and I will put down all lyings, and deceivings, and priestcrafts, and envyings, and strifes, and idolatries, and sorceries, and all manner of iniquities, and I will establish my church, like unto the church which was taught by my disciples in the days of old. 6 And now if this generation do harden their hearts against my word, behold I will deliver them up unto Satan, for he reigneth and hath power at this time, for he hath got great hold upon the hearts of the people of this generation: and not far from the iniquities of Sodom and Gomorrah, do they come at this time: and behold the sword of justice hangeth over their heads, and if they persist in the hardness of their hearts, the time cometh that it must fall upon them. Behold I tell you these things even as I also told the people of the destruction of Jerusalem, and my word shall be verified at this time as it hath hitherto been verified.
Joseph and John
In the King Follett discourse Joseph Smith quotes from John chapters 5 and 8 when describing the the doctrine of the progression of God. In these chapters John the apostle is not speaking of himself, he is quoting our Savior Jesus Christ, these are the words Jesus said. This doctrine comes from Jesus as he was speaking to the scribes, Pharisee and Sadducee. And without the testimony of John the apostle who gave word for word quotes from Christ himself, perhaps someone might have cause to pause concerning the King Follett discourse.
In chapter 5 Jesus had just healed the man at the pool of Bethseda on the Sabbath day and the Jews had come to give him what for. Christ was speaking truth to those he describes as sons of perdition, having Satan for their father. In chapter 8 the scribes and Pharisee had just brought the woman taken in adultery, and Jesus continues to teach them about God and his relationship with his Father.
So, Joseph Smith is using the Savior Jesus Christ as his source for this doctrine on the progression of God taught in the King Follett discourse. Not too shabby.
The atonement is an extremely important step in progressing to an Elohim. It is not a simple step either. The atonement is daunting even for a God. I don’t pretend to understand, that is just what Christ has told us. Each time the eternal round is renewed the office of Christ has to be filled for the new spirit generation that was just organized and need to come to the earth.
Example: Before Christ partook of the bitter cup he shrunk because he knew full well the price that would be extracted from him because he saw what the Father went through in the previous eternal round. Christ is not being a coward, but even though he’s a God, the pain is so great the thought made him wince.
(D&C 19:18 – 19) 18 Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit—and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink—19 Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men.
In his progression to the Elohim, God the Father fulfilled the office of Christ. Jesus revealed the great mystery when he tells us that the Father had previously done a great work. The idea that God had done a great work went right over their head.
(John 5:17 – 18) 17 ¶ But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work. 18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
(King Follett Discourse, A Newly Amalgamated Text pg 8) The first principle of truth and of the Gospel is to know for a certainty the character of God, and that we may converse with Him the same as one man with another, and that He once was a man like one of us, and that God Himself, the Father of us all, once dwelled on an earth the same as Jesus Christ himself did in the flesh and like us.
Jesus continues to explain that the great work the Father accomplished is exactly what he (Jesus) is doing now. The Father showed Jesus what he needed to do, and what Jesus needed to say, for Jesus doeth nothing by himself, but what the Father teaches him to do by His example. John goes over this concept repeatedly, over and over again.
(John 5:19 – 20) 19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. 20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
(King Follett Discourse, A Newly Amalgamated Text pg 8) What did Jesus Christ do? “Why I do the same things that I saw my Father do when worlds came rolling into existence.” Saw the Father do what? I saw the Father work out His kingdom with fear and trembling and I am doing the same, too.
Jesus does nothing but what the Father taught him by example.
(John 8:28 – 29) 28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. 29 And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
Jesus speaks all that he saw the Father speak
(John 8:38 – 44) 38 I speak that which I have seen with my Father:
Joseph and John both give the same witness that both God the Father and Jesus Christ his son both have life within themselves to lay it down and take it up.
(John 5:26) 26 for as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
(Nauvoo Discourses 11 June 1843) As the father hath power in himself so the Son hath power in himself, then the father has some day laid down his body & taken it again so he has a body of his own–so has his son a body of his own so each one will be in their own body
When the Father fulfilled the office of Christ he raised the dead, hence our Christ will also raise the dead.
(John 5:21 – 22) 21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will. 22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:
John not only teaches us that Christ is following in the footsteps of God the Father, and doing what he has seen his father do, but he then tells the scribes and Pharisees that they are sons of perdition and that they are doing the same thing that they have seen their father the devil do, apparently also on a previous earth.
(John 8:38 – 44) 38 I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father. 39 They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham. 40 But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham. 41 Ye do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God. 42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. 43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. 44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Christ Presents the Kingdom to the Father
The last step before becoming perfect is for Christ to present the kingdom to the Father.
(1 Corinthians 15:24 – 28) 24 Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25 For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. 27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. 28 And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
(King Follett Discourse, A Newly Amalgamated Text pg 9) When I get my kingdom, I will give it to the Father and it will add to and exalt His glory. He will take a higher exaltation and I will take His place and I am also exalted, so that He obtains kingdom rolling upon kingdom.” So that Jesus treads in His tracks as He had gone before and then inherits what God did before. God is glorified in the salvation and exaltation of His creatures.
When Christ presents the Kingdom to the Father, he (Christ) then becomes one of the Elohim and the one who sits upon the throne.
(D&C 76:106 – 108) 106 These are they who are cast down to hell and suffer the wrath of Almighty God, until the fulness of times, when Christ shall have subdued all enemies under his feet, and shall have perfected his work; 107 When he shall deliver up the kingdom, and present it unto the Father, spotless, saying: I have overcome and have trodden the wine–press alone, even the wine–press of the fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God. 108 Then shall he be crowned with the crown of his glory, to sit on the throne of his power to reign forever and ever.
(Revelation 21:5 – 6) 5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 6 And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.