Can Man Become God?


      There are different religions extant which teach that Godhood is a graduated experience (God was once man) and that man can actually attain the level of Godhood. The number of religions which teach this is increasing as more polytheistic, Eastern religions are being introduced to America.  Joseph Smith (founder of Mormonism) taught the following:

     "God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted Man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens...I say, if you were to see him to-day, you would see him like a man in form -- like yourselves, in all the person, image, and very form as a is necessary that we should understand the character and being of God, and how he came to be so; for I am going to tell you how God came to be God. We have imagined and supposed that God was God from all eternity, I will refute that idea, and will take away and do away the veil, so that you may see....and that he was once a man like us; yea, that God himself the Father of us all, dwelt on an earth the same as Jesus Christ himself did." (Journal of Discourses, Vol. 6, p. 3).

     Verses used to teach man can become God. The apostle Peter wrote of being "partakers of the divine nature" (2 Pet. 1: 4). A careful study of the text reveals the apostle is teaching that we are to acquire traits of God, such as "godliness," "virtue,", etc. (vs. 5-11). Indeed, we are to be Godlike and partake of the divine nature in this sense. Jesus used the word god in an accommodative sense in John 10: 34, 35. "God," as used in John 10 and Psalms 82: 6, is applied to superior people, rulers. Jesus, however, is not teaching that these rulers had become God as God is God.

     The attributes of God. While the scriptures teach that God's people are to progressively become more Godlike in character, they do not teach that they will or can become God in the essential traits and elements which constitute deity. God is self-existent (Jn. 5: 26), enjoys eternality (Rom. 1: 20), has unlimited power (Matt. 19: 26), infinite knowledge (Acts 2: 23, 15: 18), absolute holiness, and truthfulness (I Jn. 1: 5, Heb. 6: 18). Moreover, God has creative power (Rom. 11: 36).  To teach graduated Godhead, there must of necessity be the attendant teaching of polytheism or many gods.  Again, we quote Joseph Smith:

     "Hence, the doctrine of a plurality of Gods is as prominent in the Bible as any other doctrine. It is all over the face of the Bible . . . Paul says there are Gods many and Lords many . . . but to us there is but one God--that is pertaining to us; and he is in all and through all" (History of the Church, Vol. 6, page 474). "In the beginning, the head of the Gods called a council of the Gods; and they came together and concocted a plan to create the world and people it." (Journal of Discourses, Vol. 6, p. 5).

     Beloved, the scriptures teach and affirm there is only one God (Deut. 4: 35-39). The state of Godhead, being God, consists of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit (Rom. 1: 7, Heb. 1: 8, Acts 5: 4, 5). God declared: "…that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me" (Isa. 43: 10). Before God, there was no God. After God there shall be no God formed. Hence, man cannot so develop and graduate as to become God himself.