Monday, December 5, 2011

Daniel Tyler on the Godhead - Part II

The following is taken from Daniel Tyler, "The Gospel Principles: The Godhead", Juvenile Instructor 13/15 (1 August 1878): 173.
The Lord's prayer is coroborative of the doctrine set forth in our last. Common sense teaches us if we have a father in heaven we must have a mother also. The fact of there being a Father clearly implies the existence of a mother; neither one could exist without the other. Both are included in the word God, in the same sense that the first man and woman on this earth were included in the word Adam, the latter being in the image and likeness of the former. The ancient Israelites understood this doctrine. But during the apostasy from the early church many discarded the Father, as this generation discards the mother. Hence, they ignorantly worshiped the mother, or the "queen of heaven." This is perhaps sufficient to make this part of the subject plain.

Now, has God a body and parts? The scriptures tell us that he ate and drank with Abraham. Jacob said, "I have seen God, face to face, and my life is preserved." We read that Moses "saw his back parts." Isaiah "saw him sitting on his throne, high and lifted up." Jesus looked so much like other men that He was crucified as a criminal; yet He looked so much like the Father that He told Philip that he had seen Him had seen the Father. St. Paul coroborates this statement by saying that Christ was not only in the brightness of His Father's glory, but "the express image of his person." As to passions, anger and love are the two strongest, and He possesses both. "He is angry with the wicked every day." "God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." He "loved Jacob and hated Esau." He "hated the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes."

The Father and Son each have a separate body, although their features are so much alike that Joseph Smith said when he saw them in his first vision the only difference he could discern was that one looked a trifle older than the other. The image of the person was precisely the same. In person they cannot each be in two separate places at the same time. The Holy Ghost, however, which is a divine spirit, power and influence, emanating from the Father and the Son, is omnipresent, or everywhere present, and fills immensity of space. It is that Spirit from which the psalmist, David, inquired where he could flee to escape from. If he soared to the heavens he was there. If he fled to the uttermost parts of the earth, or to the depths of hell he could not hide from it. It is that Spirit which Joel said should be "poured out upon all flesh." The same that would fill the earth with the knowledge of God as the waters cover the great deep. The same that Ezekiel saw fill the bodies of the slain of Israel, and they arose from the dead. In short, it is the minister of God, and reveals His will to the children of men. It opens the vision of the mind to behold eternal things, and foretells future events. It also unfolds the hidden things of the past. By it, through the Son of God, the worlds and all created things were made and are upheld.

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