Did Joseph Smith see God the Father?

by Matt Slick

We jump right into this conversation where a Mormon stated there was an apostasy and that Joseph Smith saw God the Father. Of course, this is a serious problem because the Bible teaches that no one can see God the Father.

Matt: You state that there was an apostasy. Smith's vision states that God said all churches were wrong.
Matt: The Book of Mormon says that my church is a false church.
Alex: God appeared to Joseph and told him all churches draw near with their lips but their hearts are far from Him. None of them had the complete truth.
Matt: God the Father appeared to Joseph?
Alex: Yes. and His son Jesus Christ
Matt: Well, then we have a problem. The Bible says in 1 Tim. 6:15-16, "Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; 16Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen."
Matt: So who do I believe? The apostle Paul or Joseph Smith? Paul states that no man can see God (the Father). Smith, therefore, did not.
Alex: He proceeded to restore the fullness of His gospel once again to us. But many have seen him. Moses, Paul himself saw God the Father and the Son side by side, or that might have been Timothy.
Matt: No. No one has seen God the Father.
Matt: John 6:46 Jesus says, "Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father."
Matt: The people in the Old Testament were seeing Jesus, not the Father because the Father cannot be seen.
Alex: Acts 7:55. Stephen, I believe.
Matt: Yes, he had a vision.... He had a vision of Jesus standing on the right hand of the Father. The 'right hand" means position of authority.
Matt: Jesus was in heaven, next to God's throne, probably, and Stephen was allowed to see this vision.
Alex: Do you believe the Adam and Eve story? He spoke with God. They both did. Yes, I’d say it was a vision. Just like Joseph smith had a vision, and many others before and after.
Matt: Adam and eve saw Jesus, the pre-incarnate Christ.
Matt: Jesus said that no one has ever seen the father, John 6:46, therefore, no one has. Why can’t you believe it? Also, 1 Tim. 6:15-17 says no one can see or has seen him... Why can't you simply believe what it says?
Alex: The Bible seems to contradict itself if it is read without the help of interpretation.
Matt: Yes, if read without the Spirit of God. Do you have the Spirit of God?
Alex: The bottom line is you can't find all the truth just by reading the Bible on your own. God has more to help us now. And you can't say someone else's church is a cult because they choose to interpret the Bible differently. That's not what Jesus Christ did.
Matt: Mormonism is a cult because it teaches a false god. THAT is why it is wrong and Jesus corrected all sorts of people. He nailed the Pharisees. He stomped on the Sadducees.
Matt: Paul did the same thing later. It is perfectly biblical to tackle error and expose it. That is what I am doing with Mormonism.
Alex: you may not choose to believe what we do, but you can leave us alone with our beliefs. let us keep sacred the things we hold sacred
Matt: It is in error. If you die a Mormon, believing Mormon doctrine, you will go to hell. I don't want that.
Alex: Christ denounced the Sadducees for their evil works
Matt: And their evil teachings as he did with the Pharisees also.
Alex: He called them to repentance.
Matt: yes... And God is calling you to repentance. Turn from the sin of having a false god.
Matt: Exodus 20 is where God warns people to not have false gods. Mormonism has several false gods: a god the father, a god the son, a god the holy ghost, a goddess mother, becoming gods, etc.
Matt: There is only one God, not lots of them.
Alex: We believe in Christ and what He taught and what he's taught his witnesses, his prophets. Anyone who accepts Christ and follows him can be saved to inherit a degree of glory.
Matt: No... you break the Commandments of God in Exodus 20 by having a false god.
Matt: God is not an exalted man from another planet who has a goddess wife.
Matt: There are not many many gods. There is only ONE God, period. Not just "of this world" but only one in all the universe.
Alex: There's only one God in all the universe, in all eternity.
Matt: Let me ask again. You mean that there is no goddess mother?
Alex: yes there is.
Matt: btw, do you believe that Jesus is the god of this world?
Alex: Yes.
Matt: There is a mother goddess? Then how can there be only one god in all the universe and yet there be two of them?
Alex: God is God from eternity to eternity.
Matt: Is Jesus a god too? Does Elohim have a 'dad', a father who was HIS God on the other world?
Alex: I know nothing about that. It's definitely not easily explained, or understood.
Matt: It is contradictory. In Mormonism. Jesus is A god. The Holy Ghost is A god. The Father is A god. That is three gods. The goddess mother makes four.
Alex: By mans wisdom alone many things of spiritual nature seem contradictory
Matt: So you admit it is contradictory?
Matt: Then you do not believe based on the Bible. You believe based on feelings, your testimony... that contradicts the Bible.
Alex: I admit what I just said: by our wisdom alone, it seems so.
Matt: Now... why in heaven should I believe your testimony when what you are telling me is self-contradictory? Also, your belief contradicts the Bible!
Matt: Why should I believe you?
Alex: You don't have to. It'd be great if you did, but you probably won't. I know I lack a lot of wisdom and understanding but i have faith and a testimony of the true church
Matt: You don't get it... the Bible states there is only one God, period. You state otherwise.
Matt: Your faith is in a false god and your testimony contradicts the Bible. You are on pretty shaky ground.
Alex: Do you feel what you believe is true or do you believe against your feelings?
Matt: I don't "feel" anything is true when it comes to this. I trust the Bible. But, I often believe against my feelings. The Bible says not to trust your feelings (Jer. 17:9).
Matt: I trust God's word. That is why I am not a Mormon and never will be one.
Alex: Ah that’s a fun scripture. Don't be led away by your natural passions
Matt: No, it says the heart is desperately deceitful, no one can trust it.
Matt: So, God says do NOT trust your heart. Yet you do.
Alex: The Spirit of God works with us to help us know the truth. We interpret it differently
Matt: He wants you to trust His word. If you don't, you WILL be led astray
Alex: I understand what you are saying but I don’t agree.
Matt: I know you don’t. If you did, you wouldn’t be a Mormon.
Alex: I’m sure we’ll talk again sometime.
Matt: I hope so.


With that the conversation ended. As you can see, the Mormons have a difficult time reconciling the teaching of multiple Gods and the biblical teaching that there is only one. This type of conversation happens too many times with Mormons.