Family is central to our Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness and I’ve been finding that the Pearl of Great Price, New Testament, Apostles, First Presidencies, LDS Scholars, and Presidents of the Church have written that Adam was a physical son of God the Father. I know… I know, you’re thinking, “But…Jesus was the only begotten in the flesh” right? Well, look at Abraham 1:3 – “[The Priesthood] was conferred upon me from the fathers; it came down from the fathers, from the beginning of time, yea, even from the beginning, or before the foundation of the earth, down to the present time, even the right of the firstborn, or the first man, who is Adam, or first father, through the fathers unto me.” (note: Firstborn in this passage is lower-case distinguishing Adam, “a son of God” from the Son of God, Jesus Christ; Adam was born as an immortal son of God on a paradisiacal earth; the Savior was born the mortal Son of God—the Only Begotten Son of God in the flesh with the ability to die):
- “Begotten son of God” = Adam (his birth onto the paradisiacal earth as in immortal)
- “Only begotten Son in the Flesh” = Jesus Christ (Only mortal person Begotten of the Father into a fallen world
- “firstborn” = Adam (the first person to inherit a tangible body from the Father)
- “Firstborn” = The Savior (the first person to inherit a spirit body from the Father)
A few scriptures teach that Adam was a son of God:
- “Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.” Luke 3:38
- “And this is the genealogy of the sons of Adam, who was the son of God, with whom God, himself, conversed.” Moses 6:22.
- The Lord was speaking to Adam when he taught, “… as ye were born into the world by water, and blood, and the spirit, which I have made, and so became of dust a living soul, even so ye must be born again into the kingdom of heaven, of water, and of the Spirit, and be cleansed by blood, even the blood of mine Only Begotten.” Moses 6:59.
Certainly, “The story of the rib, of course, is figurative” (President Spencer W. Kimball). Elder Bruce R. McConkie added, “Eve was placed on earth in the same manner as was Adam, the Mosaic account of the Lord creating her from Adam’s rib being merely figurative.” Joseph Smith asked, “Where was there ever a son without a father? Whenever did a tree or anything spring into existence without a progenitor? Everything comes in this way.” Boyd K. Packer also asked, “Since every living thing follows the pattern of its parentage, are we to suppose that God had some other strange pattern in mind for His offspring?” The 1909 First Presidency was quoted in the Feb 2002 Ensign as saying, “He took upon him an appropriate body, the body of a man, and so became a ‘living soul.’ All who have inhabited the earth since Adam have taken bodies and become souls in like manner.”
In a few uncorrelated statements, Robert J. Matthews wrote: “I believe that Adam’s physical body was the offspring of God, literally; that he was begotten as a baby with a physical body not subject to death and that he grew to manhood. 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 morality, a condition which would have precluded Jesus from being the Only Begotten of the Father in the flesh. Jesus’ physical body was also begotten of the same celestial Father but through a mortal woman [Mary] and hence into mortality” (A Bible! A Bible!, pp. 188-189).
Here are a few others:
- Brigham Young: “He [Adam] was the person who brought the animals and the seeds from other planets to this world and brought a wife with him and stayed here. Adam was made from the dust of an earth, but not from the dust of this earth. He was made as you and I are made, and no person was ever made upon any other principle.” (Journal of Discourses, 3:319)
- Joseph Fielding Smith: “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 of man, but of his body also” (“The Creation of Man,” Course of Study for Priests 1910; quoted in Church News 19 Sept. 1963, p.8).
- Joseph F. Smith: “The Son, Jesus Christ, grew and developed into manhood the same as you or I, as likewise did God. Man was born of woman; Christ, the Savior, was born of woman, and God, the Father, was born of woman. Adam, our earthly parent, was also born of woman into this world, the same as Jesus and you and I” (Deseret Evening News, Dec 27, 1913, Sec. 3, page 7).
- Bruce R. McConkie: “Adam was created from the dust of the ground meaning that the physical body which he received was created from the elements of the earth (Gen 2:7; Moses 3:7; Abra 5:7; D&C 77:12). Similarly all men are created from the dust of the earth; that is, the elements organized into a mortal body are assembled together through the birth process” (Mormon Doctrine, “Dust”).
- Bruce R. McConkie: “We believe that Adam and Eve each began their temporal life on earth as the human germ or embryo that becomes a mortal. They were begotten; they were conceived in a womb; their bodies were quickened at a certain stage by their eternal spirits. They came forth out of the womb; they were born; and then they grew to maturity. There is no question as to what happened, and there is no question as to the doctrine of the Church” (Bruce R. McConkie, All Things- Their Creation Fall and Redemption).
Granted, God certainly could have used dust (literally) to create Adam, but with family being central to His plan and given that our doctrine teaches that we have Heavenly Parents (and assuming they know, as most parent do, how to bring children into the world), it fits that Adam was sired by Heavenly Parents.
At any rate, it appears that Adam was a physical son of God the Father. This doctrine completely undermines the philosophies of Evolution; rather than Adam and all mankind being the offspring of lower forms of life (dust), Adam, and by extension, all mankind, is in fact the son of the Highest.
So what implications are there in this for us? Well, many, but one is particularly fascinating: If we are physical descendants of Adam– and if Adam was indeed a son of God–that means that we are literal children of God, both spiritually and also physically, to some degree. That is, both your spirit and your body are descended from the Almighty God:
- First Presidency: “He took upon him an appropriate body, the body of a man, and so became a ‘living soul.’ . . . All who have inhabited the earth since Adam have taken bodies and become souls in like manner. . . The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaims man to be the direct and lineal offspring of Deity” (First Presidency of the Church, The Origin of Man, Improvement Era, Nov. 1909, 75–81, quoted in Ensign, February 2002, p. 26)
- Howard W. Hunter: “We are his creation; we are literally his children, in his image and likeness. We are creatures of the flesh as well as the spirit” (Howard W. Hunter, Conference Report, October 1968, Afternoon Meeting 139”
- Marion G. Romney: “The truth I desire to emphasize today is that we mortals are in very deed the literal offspring of God” (Conference Report, April 1973, pp. 133-136.)
- Joseph Fielding Smith: “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 of man, but of his body also”(Deseret News, Sep. 19, 1936, p. 8)
- Brigham Young: “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” (Journal of Discourses, 9:283).
- B.H. Roberts: “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 of man, but of his body also” (“The Creation of Man,” Course of Study for Priests 1910; quoted in Church News 19 Sept. 1963, p.8).
- Delbert L. Stapley: “The scriptures teach us that we are descended from the lineage of the Gods; therefore, we are created in their likeness and image, in both spirit and body…” (BYU, May 5, 1964)
Now if that doesn’t give you pause, nothing will! Your potential is unlimited. Why? Because YOU are a child of Heavenly Father and have been endowed and equipped with seeds of greatness! How’s that for a good thought today?