Post Author: Bill Pratt
One of the teachings of Mormonism is that God the Father is only one among a multitude of gods. While God the Father is creator and ruler of our world, there are other worlds where other Gods are creators, worlds with which our God the Father has nothing to do. In plain language, this belief is polytheism, or the belief that there exist multiple gods, as opposed to monotheism, which asserts that only one God exists.
So, why is polytheism false and monotheism true? First, Mormons claim to revere the Christian Bible, and the Bible clearly and unequivocally proclaims monotheism. Here is a sampling of passages to illustrate the point:
“In the beginning God [not gods] created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1).
“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one” (Deut. 6:4).
“You shall have no other gods before me” (Ex. 20:3).
“I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God” (Isa. 44:6).
“I am the LORD, and there is no other” (Isa. 45:18).
“ ‘The most important [command],’ answered Jesus, ‘is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one” ’ ” (Mark 12:29).
“We know that an idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but one” (1 Cor. 8:4).
“[There is] one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all” (Eph. 4:6).
“For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).
Theologian Norman Geisler sums up: “The text could scarcely be clearer: There is one and only one God, as opposed to more than one. The oneness of the Godhead is one of the most fundamental teachings of Scripture. A denial of this truth is a violation of the first commandment.”
Scripture, however, is not the only problem for polytheism. Philosophers and theologians have developed, over the centuries, numerous versions of cosmological arguments that demonstrate, from the existence of finite, contingent beings, the necessary existence of a First Cause of everything. The arguments all lead to a First Cause who necessarily exists, who is infinite (limitless) in being, and who is perfect (not lacking any perfection). This First Cause is God.
Why can’t there be more than one First Cause, more than one infinite and perfect being? First, there cannot be two or more infinite beings. Two or more infinite beings entails the existence of more than an infinite, which is absurd. There cannot be more than an infinite; there cannot be more than the most.
Another way to look at this is that for there to be two beings, there must be a difference between the two of them, but two infinite First Causes would be identical. Because they would be identical, there would actually only be one infinite First Cause, not two.
Second, there cannot be two perfect beings. If there were two perfect beings, then they would have to differ in some way, or else they would be the same. In order to differ, one of them would have to possess some perfection that the other lacked. As Geisler explains, “The one that lacked some perfection would not be absolutely perfect; therefore, there can be only one Being who is absolutely perfect.”
It is clear that both from Scripture and from philosophy, polytheism is false. If any of the cosmological arguments work, they all conclude that an infinite and perfect First Cause exists. There can only be one infinite and perfect First Cause, and that is who Christians call God.
If Mormons want to deny that their God the Father is the First Cause of the universe, deny that he is infinite, and deny that he is perfect, then, in effect, they have abandoned a God that is worthy of worship. Their God is finite and imperfect – hardly a God worth revering.