L.D.S. Apostle Bruce R. McConkie
Brigham Young "Did Teach"
the Adam-God Doctrine

A shocking letter came to light in the early 1980's written by probably one of the most outspoken Mormon apostles since the days of Joseph Smith, Apostle Bruce R. McConkie. In this 10 page letter written to B.Y.U. associate professor Eugene England on Feb. 19, 1981, Apostle McConkie makes the startling admission:

    "Yes, President Young did teach that Adam was the father of our spirits, and all the related things that the cultists ascribe to him." (page 6 of McConkie's letter)

Those familiar with Mormon theology will recognize this to be an admission that Brigham Young taught that Adam was God the Father. (i.e. the Adam-God doctrine)

For over 100 years the leadership of the Mormon Church have attempted to cover up this embarassing doctrine and have repeatedly denied that Brigham Young (second President of the Mormon Church) ever taught the "Adam-God" doctrine.

President Spencer W. Kimball had openly denounced the Adam-God doctrine and claimed this doctrine was only "alleged to have been taught by some of the General Authorities of past generations." (Deseret News, Oct. 9, 1979)

Joseph Fielding Smith, who became the 10th President of the Mormon Church, claimed concerning the source of the Adam-God theory in the Church's own Journal of Discourses, that "in all probability the sermon was erroneously transcribed" (Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, p. 96)

Hugh Brown, a member of the First Presidency, also attacked the accuracy of the Church's own records rather than admit Brigham Young taught the Adam-God doctrine. In a letter written by Mr. Brown on May 13, 1966, he insists:

    "The Adam-God doctrine is not the doctrine of the Church, and the reports on that subject as published in the Journal of Discources are not accurate?"

It is unthinkable that anyone could believe that dozens of sermons and statements by Brigham Young and other early Mormon leaders from the Church's own records, could all be inaccurate.

Among the many times Brigham Young taught that Adam was God the Father, was a sermon delivered in the tabernacle in Salt Lake City where Brigham Young pronounced that Adam "is our Father and our God, and the only God with whom we have to do." He went on to warn:

    "Now, !et all who may hear these doctrines, pause before they make light of them, or treat them with indifference, for they will prove their salvation or damnation? (Journal of Discourses, Vol. 1, pp. 50,51)

Over 20 years after Brigham Young delivered his first public address proclaiming Adam as our God, he publicly admonished the Saints about their unbelief in this doctrine that God Himself revealed to him:

    "How much unbelief exists in the minds of the Latter-day Saints In regard to one particular doctrine which I revealed to them, and which God revealed to me-namely that Adam is our father and God-...' (Deseret News Weekly, June 18, 1873)

Although McConkie considereds the Adam-God doctrine "false doctrine" and those who believe it as "cultists," he admited the Adam-God doctrine is based on "plain and clear quotations" from the Church's own literature. (page 4 of McConkie's letter)

McConkie then makes the shocking admission which the leadership of the Mormon Church have avoided for years:

    "Yes, President Young did teach that Adam was the father of our spirits, and all the related things that the cultists ascribe to him. This [i.e., Brigham Young's teaching on Adam], however, is not true. He expressed views that are out of harmony with the gospel." (page 6)

Even though McConkie conceded the fact that Brigham Young did teach the Adam-God doctrine, he states that Brigham Young contradicted himself and the Latter-day Saints are to believe only the expressions that accord with the Standard Works:

    "What I am saying is, that Brigham Young, contradicted Brigham Young, and the issue becomes one of which Brigham Young we will believe. The answer is we will believe the expressions that accord with the teachings in the Standard Works." (page 6)

While McConkie contends only the "expressions that accord with the teachings in the Standard Works" are to be believed, Brigham Young taught his sermons were Scripture:

    "I have never yet preached a sermon and sent It out to the children of men, that they may not call Scripture." (Journal of Discources, vol. 13, p. 95)

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McConkie's claim that the Standard Works are the final authority for settling doctrinal controversies was in direct opposition to the guidance given by Ezra Taft Benson, President of the Council of the Twelve Apostles at the time of McConkie's letter. Prior to his becoming the Prophet of the church, Ezra Taft Benson paved the way for the power he would have by asserting that the "Living Prophet" is "More Vital to Us Than The Standard Works" and "The Prophet Does Not Have to Say 'Thus Saith the Lord' to Give Us Scripture: (Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophets, B.Y.U. Devotional, Feb. 26, 1980, pages 3,6)

In McConkie's letter he makes the startling admission that even the Prophet can teach false doctrine in "fundamental and basic things" that can result in the loss of the soul:

    "I do not know all of the providences of the Lord, but I do know that he permits false doctrine to be taught in and out of the Church... If we believe false doctrine, we will be condemned. If that belief is on basic and fundamental things, it will lead us astray and we will lose our souls .... This clearly means that people who teach false doctrine in the fundamental and basic things will lose their souls. The nature and kind of being that God is, is one of these fundamentals. I repeat: Brigham Young erred in some of his statements on the nature and kind of belng that God is and as to the position of Adam in the plan of salvation .... If we choose to believe and teach the false portions of his doctrines we are making an election that will damn us: (page 7)

The question that must be asked is, How can a "True Prophet" of God teach doctrine that would result in the loss of the soul? The obvious conclusion is, Brigham Young was a "False Prophet" and if McConkie's guidelines are used, Brigham Young has lost his soul. However, McConkie still maintained Brigham Young as a "mighty prophet" who "led Israel the way the Lord wanted his people led" and has gone on to "eternal exaltation": (page 6)

If McConkie is to be believed, the Prophet can teach false doctrine and still go on to eternal reward, but his followers may "lose their souls" and be "damned."

President Heber C. Kimball also insisted the leaders be followed even if they were wrong:

    "But if you are told by your leader to do a thing, do it. None of your business whether it is right or wrong." (Journal of Discourses, vol. 6, p. 32)

The Ward Teachers message for June, 1945, warns the L.D.S. about doing "their own thinking":

"When our leaders speak, the thinking has been done. When they point the way, there is no other which is safe. When they give direction, it should mark the end of controversy.... He [Satan] wins a great victory when he can get members of the Church to speak against their leaders and to 'do their own thinking'" (Improvement Era, page 354)

Although the Mormon Church claims to have a "Living Prophet" which is necessary to guide the Church, McConkie cautions gospel students against building life philosophies from quotations of Presidents of the Church:

    "Wise gospel students do not build their philosophies of life on quotations of individuals, even though those quotations come from presidents of the Church: (page 7)

McConkie then turns right around and insists that he and the leadership of the Church must be obeyed even if they lead the Church astray:

    "You do not have a divine commission to correct me or any of the Brethren .... If I lead the Church astray, that is my responsibility, but the fact still remains that I am the one appointed with all the rest involved so to do: (page 9)

"Thinking people" will quickly recognize the danger in following the council of the leaders of the Mormon Church.

With Bruce McConkie's admission that "President Young did teach" the Adam-God doctrine, Mormons are faced with the reality that Brigham Young clearly broke the first commandment and taught others to do the same: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." (Exodus 20:3)

The Bible condemns a prophet who teaches about a different God than the only true God:

    "But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die: (Deut. 18:20)

The New Testament foretells of false prophets who shall come teaching "damnable heresies" deceiving many:

    "But there were false prophets also among the people even as there shall be false teachers among you. Who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.

    "And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of:" (II Peter 2:1,2)

The Bible gives record of what can happen by following a prophet or leaders that teach lies:

    "The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail. For the leaders of this people cause them to err, and they that are led of them are destroyed:" (Isaiah 9:15,16)

In light of Biblical tests for a "true prophet" Brigham Young was clearly a FALSE PROPHET, and claims by Mormons of a so called "priesthood authority" through Brigham Young are null and void. Honest, "thinking Mormons" can reach only one possible conclusion--The Mormon Church is not a divinely led institution.


Why not put your total trust in the Word of God, the Bible. Admit your need before a righteous and Holy God that you are a sinner in need of total forgiveness and cleansing. (Romans 3:23) Recognize the fact that you are unable to earn God's forgiveness by your own "good works." (Isaiah 64:6, Titus 3:5) Receive the "gift" of life eternal in the presence of God by trusting in the finished work at the cross and inviting Jesus into your heart and asking Him to make you a new creature. (Romans 6:23, John 3:16, Acts 16:31, John 1:12, I John 5:11-13, II Cor. 5:17)

After you have received Jesus as Lord and Savior of your life and have the promise of life eternal, serve Him and produce good works. (Eph. 2:8-10, Titus 3:5-8)

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