Our Identity and Our Destiny | Tad R. Callister

Our Identity and Our Destiny | Tad R. Callister

In keeping with the theme of this week, I would
like to discuss with you a vision of who we are and what we may become. At a recent training
session for General Authorities, the question was asked: “How can we help those struggling
with pornography?” Elder Russell M. Nelson stood and replied,
“Teach them their identity and their purpose.” That answer resonated with me, not only as
a response to that specific question but as an appropriate response to most of the challenges
we face in life. And so today I speak of the true nature of our identity and a correct
vision of our divine destiny. First, our identity. There is a sentiment
among many in the world that we are the spirit creations of God, just as a building is the
creation of its architect or a painting the creation of its painter or an invention the
creation of its inventor. The scriptures teach, however, a much different doctrine. They teach
that we are more than creations of God; they teach that we are the literal spirit offspring
or children of God our Father. What difference does this doctrinal distinction make? The
difference is monumental in its consequence because our identity determines in large measure
our destiny. For example, can a mere creation ever become like its creator? Can a building
ever become an architect? A painting a painter? Or an invention an inventor? If not, then
those who believe we are creations of God, rather than His spirit offspring, reach the
inevitable conclusion that we do not have the capacity to become like our creator, God.
In essence, their doctrine of identity has defined and dictated a diminished destiny. On the other hand, as members of The Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we believe that we are the spirit offspring of God with
inherited spiritual traits that give us the divine potential to become like our parent,
God the Father. As to this identity, President Packer has written: You are a child of God. He is the father of
your spirit. Spiritually you are of noble birth, the offspring of the King of Heaven.
Fix that truth in your mind and hold to it. However many generations in your mortal ancestry,
no matter what race or people you represent, the pedigree of your spirit can be written
on a single line. You are a child of God! It is this doctrine of identity that defines
our potential destiny of godhood. If one does not correctly understand his divine identity,
then he will never correctly understand his divine destiny. They are, in truth, inseparable
partners. What, then, has God revealed to us about our
destiny? He has spoken clearly and frequently and forthrightly on this subject from the
very beginning. When Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, they lived in a state
of innocence—meaning they only had a limited knowledge of good and evil. Lehi described
their condition as follows: “Wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence,
having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.” Suppose for a moment my wife and I invited
one of you good Saints from California to drive to our home in Utah. Further suppose
I asked you to drive in neutral. You might smile and respond, “That’s not
possible.” What if I further replied, “Just push the
accelerator all the way to the floor—you know, as they say, ‘Push the pedal to the
metal.’” You might respond, “That would make no difference.
I cannot reach your destination until I put my car in gear.” So it was with Adam and Eve. They were in
a state of spiritual neutral and could not progress toward their divine destiny until
they were cast out of the garden and thus put in spiritual gear. When Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden
of Eden, they traded their innocence, meaning a lack of knowledge of good and evil, for
the prospect of perfection—that was the deal. Innocence and perfection are not the
same. An infant may be innocent but certainly not perfect in the sense that he or she has
acquired all the attributes of godliness. Once Adam and Eve were cast from the garden,
we read in the book of Genesis that God Himself said, “Behold, the man is become as one
of us [meaning like the gods].” How could that be? God then tells us why this new destiny
was possible—because men now “know good and evil.” Being immersed in a world of
good and evil, having the capacity to choose, and being able to draw upon the powers of
the Atonement resulted in man having unlimited opportunities to progress toward his destiny
of godhood. We learn a great doctrinal truth in these
series of events surrounding the Garden of Eden: unfallen man would have remained in
a state of innocence—safe, but restricted in his progress. On the other hand, fallen
man ventured into a heightened arena of risk, but, blessed with the Atonement of Jesus Christ,
he gained access to unlimited possibilities and powers and potential. Speaking of the
effect of the Atonement on fallen man, C. S. Lewis remarked: For God is not merely mending, not simply
restoring a status quo. Redeemed humanity is to be something more glorious than unfallen
humanity would have been, more glorious than any unfallen race now is. . . . And this super-added
glory will, with true vicariousness, exalt all creatures. Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, God
can exalt all His children—meaning empower them to become like Him. But one might ask, “Why does God want us
to become like Him?” In order to answer that question, one must first understand why
man exists. Lehi gave the short and simple answer: “Men are, that they might have joy.”
President David O. McKay confirmed that fundamental doctrinal truth: “Happiness is the purpose
and design of existence.” If I were to ask you who is the happiest being in all the
universe—the one with the most joy—you would no doubt respond, “God.” Accordingly,
God wants us to become perfect like Him so we can experience His quality of joy and thus
best fulfill the measure of our existence. That is why His plan for us is sometimes called
“the plan of happiness.” In spite of God’s altruistic aims on our
behalf, perhaps no doctrine, no teaching, no philosophy has stirred such controversy
as has this: that man may become a god. It is espoused by some as blasphemous, by others
as absurd. Such a concept, they challenge, lowers God to the status of man and thus deprives
God of both His dignity and divinity. Others claim this teaching to be devoid of scriptural
support. It is but a fantasy, they say, of a young, uneducated schoolboy, Joseph Smith.
Certainly no God-fearing, right-thinking, Bible-oriented person would subscribe to such
a philosophy as this. While some of these advocates are hardened critics, others are
honest and bright men who simply disagree with us on this doctrine. So wherein lies
the truth? Hopefully the following will invite the Holy Ghost to whisper the quiet but certain
truth to all those who honestly seek it. For our search of truth, we will turn to five
witnesses—first and foremost to the testimony of the scriptures; second, to the witness
of the early Christian writers; third, to the wisdom of those poets and authors who
drink from the divine well; fourth, to the power of logic; and fifth, to the voice of
history. First, the scriptures. Did not an angel appear
unto Abraham and extend to him this heavenly mandate: “Walk before me, and be thou perfect”? “That is true,” interjects the critic.
“Perfect as compared to other men, other mortals—certainly not perfect as compared
to God. The word was used in its relative, not absolute sense.” “Is that so?” comes the reply. “Let
us then pursue the use of the word perfect as used by the Savior Himself.” It was in the Sermon on the Mount when the
Savior declared, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” Was
the Savior inviting men to be perfect as compared to other men—other mortals—or as compared
to God Himself? This command was consistent with the Savior’s high priestly prayer.
Speaking of the believers, He petitioned the Father: That they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be
made perfect in one. In accord with that request for perfection,
Paul taught that a critical purpose of the Church was “for the perfecting of the saints
. . . till we all come . . . unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the
fulness of Christ.” Note the measuring rod: not man, not some form of mini-Christ or quasi-God,
but rather that we should become “a perfect man, [and then he gives us the standard we
should strive for] unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” Does
that sound relative to you? The critic is momentarily quiet. Sheepishly
he responds, “Certainly those scriptures must mean something else.” The scriptures supporting this doctrine, however,
continue to roll forth with repeated and powerful testimony. At one point the Savior was about
to be stoned by the Jews for blasphemy. He reminded them of His good works and then asked,
“For which of those works do ye stone me?” They replied that they were not stoning him
for good works “but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.” To this He readily acknowledged that He was
and declared that they should be likewise: “Is it not written in your law, I said,
Ye are gods?” In other words, He said not only am I a god, but all of you are potential
gods. He was referring to His own Old Testament declaration, with which the Jews should have
been familiar: “Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.” The
Savior was merely reaffirming a basic gospel teaching that all men are children of God,
and thus all might become like Him. Paul understood this principle, for, when
speaking to the men of Athens, he said: “Certain also of your own poets have said, For we are
also his offspring.” Paul knew the consequences of being the offspring of God, for, while
speaking to the Romans, he declared: The Spirit itself beareth witness with our
spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and
joint-heirs with Christ. Not subordinate heirs, not junior, not contingent,
but joint, equal heirs with Christ Himself, to share in all that He shall share. After
all, is not that the same promise made by the Lord to the Apostle John? “To him that
overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am
set down with my Father in his throne.” Is it any wonder that Paul should write to
the Saints of Philippi, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling
of God in Christ Jesus.” Paul, who understood so very well our destiny, was striving for
the reward of godhood. Peter, who also understood this doctrine, pled with the Saints that they
might become “partakers of the divine nature,” meaning recipients of godhood. That is exactly
what Jesus ordered when speaking to the Book of Mormon Saints: “Therefore, what manner
of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am.” And it is exactly what the
Savior promised in this dispensation for all faithful Saints: “Then shall they be gods,
because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them.” The critic, still shaking his head, responds,
“But such a concept lowers God to the status of man and thus robs Him of His divinity.” “Or, to the contrary,” comes the reply,
“does it elevate man in his divine-like potential?” Paul well knew this argument of the critic
and silenced it once and for all ages ago. Speaking to the Saints of Philippi, he said: Let this mind be in you, which was also in
Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it
not robbery to be equal with God. The Savior knew that for Him to be a god and
for us to be thus minded would not rob God of His divinity. That makes good sense. After
all, who is greater: that being who limits or that being who enhances man’s eternal
progress? One might ask, Who can give greater honor
and glory to God—a creature of lower or more exalted status? Can an animal offer the
same honor or worship with the same passion and intensity as a human? Can a mere mortal
express the empyreal feelings or exercise the spiritual fervency of a potential god?
One’s capacity to honor and worship is magnified with one’s intellectual, emotional, cultural,
and spiritual enlightenment. Accordingly, the more we become like God, the greater our
ability to pay Him homage. In that process of lifting men heavenward, God simultaneously
multiplies His own honor and glory and thus is glorified more, not less. Brigham Young addressed this issue: [Man’s godhood] will not detract anything
from the glory and might of our heavenly Father, for he will still remain our Father, and we
shall still be subject to him, and as we progress, in glory and power it the more enhances the
glory and power of our heavenly Father. That is the irony of the critic’s argument—godhood
for man does not diminish God’s status; to the contrary, it elevates it by producing
more intelligent, more passionate, more spiritual Saints who have enlarged capacities to understand,
honor, and worship Him. The Savior’s soul-stirring and thought-provoking
injunction to “be ye therefore perfect” was more than the sounding of brass or tinkling
of cymbals. It was a divine-like invitation to rise up to our full potential and become
like God our Father. C. S. Lewis, as a rampant advocate of this simple but glorious truth,
wrote: The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic
gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that
can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were “gods” and He is going to
make good His words. . . . The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that
is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said. Could it be any clearer? Second, early Christian writers likewise wrote
of our divine destiny. As early as the second century, Irenaeus noted: “We have not been
made gods from the beginning, but at first merely men, then at length gods.”10 On
another occasion Irenaeus clarified that exalted man would not be relegated to some type of
glorified angel but literally become a god: “Passing beyond the angels, and be made
after the image and likeness of God.” Clement of Alexandria, a contemporary of Irenaeus,
spoke of the reward of godhood that followed long preparation: “Being destined to sit
on thrones with the other gods that have been first put in their places by the Saviour.” This
same Clement of Alexandria then added this unequivocal statement about the man who lives
a righteous life: “Knowing God, he will be made like God. . . . And that man becomes
God, since God so wills.” Hippolytus, bridging the second and third
centuries, spoke of the unlimited potential of faithful Saints in this life: “And thou
shalt be a companion of the Deity, and a co-heir with Christ. . . . For thou hast become God: . . . thou
hast been deified,and begotten unto immortality.” Cyprian, a well-known Christian leader of
the third century, reaffirmed that men can become like Christ: “What Christ is, we
Christians shall be, if we imitate Christ.”15 Origen, also of the third century, wrote:
“The true God [referring to the Father], then, is ‘The God,’ and those who are
formed after Him are gods, images, as it were, of Him the prototype.” And in the fourth century St. Athanasius of
Alexandria explained that “[God] was made flesh in order that we might be enabled to
be made gods.” For several centuries this doctrinal truth
survived, but eventually the Apostasy took its toll, and this doctrine in its purity
and expansiveness was lost. The doctrine of man’s potential for godhood as taught by
the Prophet Joseph Smith was not his invention—not his creation, not conjured up by some fertile
mind. It was simply and solely a restoration of a glorious truth that had been taught in
the scriptures and by many early Christian writers of the primitive Church. The third witness—inspired poets and authors.
We may look to the wisdom of selected poets and authors who are men of integrity and spiritual
insight. It was C. S. Lewis who again and again reaffirmed this divine proposition: It is a serious thing to live in a society
of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person
you talk to may one day be a creature which . . . you would be strongly tempted to worship.
. . . There are no ordinary people. How right he was. There are no ordinary people,
only potential gods and goddesses in our midst. It was Victor Hugo, that masterful author,
who said, “The thirst for the infinite proves infinity.” What a powerful and sublime
thought. Perhaps the thirst for godhood likewise proves godhood. Would the God you and I know
plant the vision and desire for godhood within a man’s soul and then frustrate him in his
ability to attain it? Shakespeare had a flash of this insight, for, when speaking through
the lips of Hamlet, he said: What a piece of work is a man! How noble in
reason! how infinite in faculty! in form, in moving, how express and admirable! in action
how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! Robert Browning’s vision that so often pierced
the mortal veil did so once again in these lines from his poem Rabbi Ben Ezra: Life’s struggle having so far reached its
term. Thence shall I pass, approved A man, for aye removedFrom the developed brute—a
god, though in the germ. This insightful poet saw the seeds and germ
of godhood in every man. The fourth witness is the power of logic.
Do not the laws of science teach us that like begets like, each after its kind? Science
has taught us that a complex genetic code transferred from parent to child is responsible
for the child attaining the physical attributes of his parents. If this be so, is it illogical
to assume that spirit offspring receive a spiritual code giving to them the divine characteristics
and potential of their parent—God—thus making them gods in embryo? No, it is but
a fulfillment of the law that like begets like. This is the same truth taught by the
prophet Lorenzo Snow: We were born in the image of God our Father;
He begat us like unto Himself. There is the nature of Deity in the composition of our
spiritual organization. In our spiritual birth, our Father transmitted to us the capabilities,
powers and faculties which He possessed, as much so as the child on its mother’s bosom
possesses, although in an undeveloped state, the faculties, powers and susceptibilities
of its parent. President Boyd K. Packer told of coming home
one day and helping his children gather new chicks in the barn. As his little four-year-old
daughter held a baby chick in her hands, he said something like, “Won’t that be a
beautiful dog when it grows up?” His daughter looked at him in surprise. And then he said something like, “Or perhaps
it will be a cat or even a cow.” His little daughter wrinkled her nose, as
if to say, “Daddy, don’t you know anything? It will grow up exactly like its parents.” Then he observed how this little four-year-old
girl knew, almost instinctively, that the chick would grow up to follow the pattern
of its parentage. The Gospel of Philip, an apocryphal book,
makes this simple statement of logic: “A horse sires a horse, a man begets man, a god
brings forth a god.” The difference between man and God is significant—but it is one
of degree, not kind. It is the difference between an acorn and an oak tree, a rosebud
and a rose, a son and a father. In truth, every man is a potential god in embryo, in
fulfillment of that eternal law that like begets like. Fifth, and finally, the voice of history will
likewise verify this truth. I recall the story of the large milk truck that drove past the
pasture of cows. Written on the side of the vehicle in large letters were the words “Homogenized,
Pasteurized, Vitamins A and D Added.” One cow looked at the sign, turned to the
other, and said, “Makes you feel kind of inadequate, doesn’t it?” I admit that is how I feel when I look at
the distance between God and me, but I take comfort when I contemplate what is accomplished
in the short space of a mortal life. I paraphrase these thoughts of B. H. Roberts: From the
cradle have risen orators, generals, artists, and workers to perform the wonders of our
age. From a helpless babe may arise a Demosthenes or Lincoln to direct the destinies of nations.
From such a babe may come a Michelangelo to fill the world with beauty. From such a beginning
may come a Mozart, a Beethoven to call from silence the powers and serenity of music.
From such a helpless babe may arise a Joseph Smith to give light in a world of darkness. Contemplate for a moment what can be accomplished
in the short space of a mortal life. Suppose now that you were to remove from man the barriers
of death and grant him immortality and God for his guide. What limits would you then
want to ascribe to his mental, moral, or spiritual achievements? Perhaps B. H. Roberts expressed
it best when he said: If within the short space of mortal life there
are men who rise up out of infancy and become masters of the elements of fire and water
and earth and air, so that they well-nigh rule them as Gods, what may it not be possible
for them to do in a few hundreds or thousands of millions of years? A glimpse beyond the veil tells us that the
records of history do not end at death but continue to mark man’s unlimited achievements.
Victor Hugo, with an almost spiritual X-ray, saw the possibilities after death: The nearer I approach the end, the plainer
I hear around me the immortal symphonies of the worlds which invite me. . . . For half
a century I have been writing my thoughts in prose and verse; history. . . . I have
tried all. But I feel I have not said a thousandth part of what is in me. When I go down to the
grave, I can say, like so many others, “I have finished my day’s work,” but I can
not say, “I have finished my life.” My day’s work will begin again the next morning.
The tomb is not a blind alley; it is a thoroughfare. . . . My work is only beginning. Perfection is a quest on both sides of the
veil. The scriptures remind us, “Wherefore, continue in patience until ye are perfected.” The scriptures, early Christian writers, poetry,
logic, and history testify not only of the divine possibility but of the divine reality
that man may become as God. The Doctrine and Covenants refers to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,
declaring, “And because they did none other things than that which they were commanded,
they have entered into their exaltation, . . . and sit upon thrones, and are not angels but are
gods.” For these men the divine possibility became the divine reality. This does not mean
they became gods who replaced our Father in Heaven but rather exalted men who have enlarged
capabilities to honor and glorify Him. Our Father in Heaven will forever stand supreme
as our God, whom we will love and revere and worship, worlds without end. But how is it possible that you and I, with
all our faults and weaknesses and shortcomings, could ever become a god? Fortunately, a loving
Heavenly Father has given us resources to lift us above our mortal restraints and propel
us to divine heights. I mention but two such resources, both made possible because of the
Atonement of Jesus Christ, whose crowning aim is to assist us in our pursuit of godhood—so
that we might be “at one”—not only with Him but also “at one” like Him. First,
I mention the saving ordinances of the kingdom. Joseph Smith received a revelation that explained
the relationship between ordinances and godhood: Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the
power of godliness is manifest. And without the ordinances thereof, and the
authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the
flesh. In other words, participation in the saving
ordinances unlocks and unleashes certain powers of godliness in our lives that are not available
in any other way. These powers help refine us and perfect us. The five saving ordinances
and the corresponding powers of godliness are as follows: First, baptism by immersion (and the corollary
ordinance of the sacrament). Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, this ordinance
cleanses us from our sins and helps make us holy, thus aligning our life more closely
with the Savior’s. Second, the gift of the Holy Ghost. This
gift helps us know “the will of the Lord [and] the mind of the Lord” and thus makes
possible our acquisition of a more godlike mind. Third, the priesthood. This ordinance transfers
to a mere mortal the power to act for God on earth as though He Himself were present.
In essence, it is a spiritual power of attorney to be God’s agent and to invoke His power,
thus helping us learn how to exercise divine powers in righteousness. Fourth, the endowment. This ordinance is
a gift of knowledge from God as to how we might become more like Him, accompanied by
covenants to inspire us in that endeavor. There is an old saying, “Knowledge is power.”
Accordingly, the righteous use of this knowledge received in the endowment ordinance results
in more godly power in our own lives. That is why the Doctrine and Covenants says, “I
design to endow those whom I have chosen with power from on high.” Fifth, the sealing ordinances. Death, with
all its mighty power, cannot destroy those relationships sealed in a temple—which relationships
can now continue beyond the grave and allow us, like God, to have eternal increase. The saving ordinances are much more than a
checklist of actions we must satisfy to gain entrance to the celestial kingdom—they are
the keys that open the doors to heavenly powers that can lift us above our mortal limitations. The second resource to assist us in our pursuit
of godhood is the gifts of the Spirit. What are the gifts of the Spirit? We know them
as love, patience, knowledge, testimony, and so on. In essence, each gift of the Spirit
represents an attribute of godliness. Accordingly, each time we acquire a gift of the Spirit,
we acquire a potential attribute of godliness. In this regard Orson Pratt taught: One object [of the Church] is declared to
be “For the perfecting of the Saints.” . . . The . . . plan . . . for the accomplishment
of this great object, is through the medium of the spiritual gifts. When the supernatural
gifts of the Spirit cease, the Saints cease to be perfected, therefore they can have no
hopes of obtaining a perfect salvation. . . . . . . In every nation and age, where believers
exist, there the gifts must exist to perfect them. No wonder the Lord commands us to “covet
earnestly the best gifts”; “seek ye earnestly the best gifts”; and to “lay hold upon
every good gift.” President George Q. Cannon spoke of man’s
shortcomings and the divine solution. Recognizing the link between spiritual gifts and godhood,
he fervently pleaded with the Saints to overcome each manifested weakness through the acquisition
of a countermanding gift of strength known as the gift of the Spirit. He spoke as follows: . . . No man ought to say, “Oh, I cannot
help this; it is my nature.” He is not justified in it, for the reason that God has promised
to give strength to correct these things, and to give gifts that will eradicate them.
. . . He wants His Saints to be perfected in the truth. For this purpose He gives these
gifts, and bestows them upon those who seek after them, in order that they may be a perfect
people upon the face of the earth, notwithstanding their many weaknesses, because God has promised
to give the gifts that are necessary for their perfection. If any of us, he said, are imperfect, it is our duty to pray for the gift that will make us perfect. What was the Lord’s response to Solomon’s
prayerful request for the gift of an understanding heart? The scriptures record, “The speech
pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing,” and then the Lord noted, “Behold,
I have done according to thy words: lo, I have given thee a wise and an understanding
heart.” When was the last time we prayed for a gift
of the Spirit that would lift us above our mortal weakness and further our pursuit of
godhood? Again and again the Lord has both invited and promised, “Ask, and it shall
be given you.” Why is it so critical to have a correct vision
of this divine destiny of godliness of which the scriptures and other witnesses so clearly
testify? Because with increased vision comes increased motivation. Elder Bruce R. McConkie
wrote, “No doctrine is more basic, no doctrine embraces a greater incentive to personal righteousness
. . . as does the wondrous concept that man can be as his Maker.” And why not possible?
Do not all Christian churches advocate Christlike behavior? Is that not what the Sermon on the
Mount is all about? If it is blasphemous to think we can become as God, then at what point
is it not blasphemous to become like God—90 percent, 50 percent, 1 percent? Is it more
Christian to seek partial godhood than total godhood? Are we invited to walk the path of
godhood—to “be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect”—with
no possibility of ever reaching the destination? As we better understand our potential destiny,
our level of self-worth and confidence and motivation is greatly heightened. Youth will
understand that it is shortsighted at best to take easy classes and easy teachers rather
than ones that will stretch them toward godhood. They will catch the vision that it is godhood,
not grades, for which they are striving. And what of our more elderly members? They
will understand there is no such thing as a retirement farm, no day when the work is
done. Like Victor Hugo, they know their work has only begun. There are yet thousands of
books to read and write, paintings to enjoy, music to score, and service to render. They
understand the Lord’s revelation to the Prophet Joseph: “Whatever principle of intelligence
we attain unto in this life, it will rise with us in the resurrection.” What about those of us who feel weaknesses
in our life? We can take renewed hope in the words of the Lord to Moroni: “For if they
humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become
strong unto them.” And what about those who believe they have
sinned beyond Christ’s redeeming grace? They can take comfort in His promise: “Though
your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.” Or perhaps there are some
who believe their lives are shattered beyond repair. Can they not have renewed hope in
these words of the Savior: “[I will] give unto them beauty for ashes”? There is no
problem, no obstacle to our divine destiny, for which the Savior’s Atonement does not
have a remedy of superior healing and lifting power. That is why Mormon said, “Ye shall
have hope through the atonement of Christ.” How could we not have increased faith in God
and in ourselves if we knew He had planted within our souls the seeds of godhood and
endowed us with access to the powers of the Atonement? “Godhood?” If not, the critic
must answer, “Why not?” Perhaps we could suggest three answers for
the critic’s consideration: Maybe man cannot become like God because God does not have
the power to create a divine-like offspring. It is beyond his present level of comprehension
and intelligence. “Blasphemous,” responds the critic. “He
has all knowledge and all power.” Perhaps then He has created a lesser offspring
because He does not love us. “Ridiculous, absurd,” is his reply. “For
God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son.” Well, perhaps God has not planted within us
the divine spark because He wants to retain godhood for Himself; He is threatened by our
progress. He can only retain His superiority by asserting man’s inferiority. “No, no,” laments the critic. “Have
you ever known a loving, kindly father who didn’t want his children to become all that
he is and more?” And so it is with God, our Father. I testify there are no ordinary people, no
ciphers, no zeros—only potential gods and goddesses in our midst. While many witnesses
testify of this truth, the most powerful of all are the quiet whisperings of the Spirit
that confirm both to my mind and to my heart the grandeur and truth of this glorious doctrine.
As Jacob so taught, “The Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh
of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be.” I pray we will recognize our true identity
as literal sons and daughters of God and grasp a vision of our divine destiny as it really
may be. I pray we will be grateful to a loving Father and Son who made it so. In the name
of Jesus Christ, amen.

Incredible talk… How do we live with purpose unless we know what our true Identity and purpose really is? I appreciate all of the biblical references and words from the Savior Himself.


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Megan L. Divine ft. Loom Angel – Liberty Ground
Megan L. Divine ft. Loom Angel – Liberty Ground

Ooh hoo ooh Don’t you wanna calm down? Don’t you want to hear the truth? Don’t you want to be inspired? Don’t you want to just be you? La la la la la la you can’t touch me la la la la la la I’m finally free la la la …