Did Dinosaurs Die Before the Fall of Adam?

The following ten Presidents of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints taught very clearly and consistently throughout their lives that the Fall of Adam on this earth was literal, and that there was no death on this earth prior to this Fall.
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  • Joseph Smith
  • Brigham Young
  • John Taylor
  • Wilford Woodruff
  • Joseph F. Smith
  • George Albert Smith
  • Joseph Fielding Smith
  • Harold B. Lee
  • Spencer W. Kimball
  • Ezra Taft Benson
Note that these ten Presidents of the Church have clearly refuted evolutionary assumptions by these statements on the Fall. We know the Fall of man was in the day of Adam, and we know that Adam lived approximately 6000 years ago. We have the literal, physical genealogy from Adam to Christ in scripture, and we know that it was a little more that 2000 years ago that the Lord lived upon the earth. This all being true we know that there was no death on this earth approximately 6000 years ago. This is taught by the Old Testament, New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price and as mentioned by at least 10 Presidents of the Church in this last dispensation. All of these witnesses testify that the Darwinian assumptions claiming millions of years of natural selection on this earth prior to the Fall are false. But, say many, “We have determined that evolution is a fact and therefore the Prophets and the scriptures are in error. We need to leave these statements in the past. If we keep teaching a literal Fall, we will destroy faith.” For those making such claims, the words of President Spencer W. Kimball create an anchor in a shifting world.

“Our first parents, Adam and Eve, disobeyed God. By eating the forbidden fruit, they became mortal. Consequently, they and all of their descendants became subject to both mortal and spiritual death (mortal death, the separation of body and spirit; and spiritual death the separation of the spirit from the presence of God and death as pertaining to the things of the spirit). In order for Adam to regain his original state (to be in the presence of God), an atonement for this disobedience was necessary. In God’s divine plan, provision was made for a redeemer to break the bonds of death and, through the resurrection, make possible the reunion of the spirits and bodies of all persons who had dwelt on earth…“For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” [1]” [2]

“As in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive. Adam and Eve transgressed a law and were responsible for a change that came to all their posterity, that of mortality. Could it have been the different food which made the change? Somehow blood, the life-giving element in our bodies, replaced the finer substance which coursed through their bodies before. They and we became mortal, subject to illness, pains, and even the physical dissolution called death.”

“The Gods organized the earth of materials at hand, over which they had control and power. This truth is absolute. A million educated folk might speculate and determine in their minds that the earth came into being by chance. The truth remains. The earth was made by the Gods…opinions do not change that. The Gods organized and gave life to man and placed him on the earth. This is absolute. It cannot be disproved. A million brilliant minds might conjecture otherwise, but it is still true.” [3] [4]

The Lord and His Prophets appear to have given us very clear direction on this matter. For those interested in statements in the scriptures on this topic, the Bible Dictionary is a great place to begin. The Bible Dictionary, while not canon, nevertheless affirms what the scriptures, prophets and leading doctrinal scholars of the Church have taught. Please see the commentary for the section discussing the scriptural teachings on the Fall from the Bible Dictionary in the current edition of the LDS Scriptures. Several other topics in the Bible Dictionary can be used as references as well:
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As you ponder these scriptures, note how the revelations teach the Creation and Fall. In nearly every instance in the scriptures where the Atonement is taught in detail, the doctrines pertaining to the Fall are also taught. Some examples of this include the missionary work of the sons of Mosiah [5], the teachings on the Atonement in 2 Nephi 9:6 , Mosiah 3:11 , Alma 12:21–33 ,Alma 34:8–9 and so on. President Ezra Taft Benson was very concerned that some in the Church were not accepting and teaching the true doctrine of the Fall as taught in the scriptures. He counseled us that we should teach the doctrines of the gospel as they are taught in the scriptures.

“We all need to take a careful inventory of our performance and also the performance of those over whom we preside to be sure that we are teaching the “great plan of the Eternal God” to the Saints. Are we accepting and teaching what the revelations tell us about the Creation, Adam and the fall of man, and redemption from that fall through the atonement of Christ?” [6]

In addition, this doctrine of the Fall is taught very clearly in the temples. With so many witnesses what should be our course? This statement by President Harold B. Lee gives us clear direction about what our position should be:

“We [must] measure every teaching to be found in the world of book learning by the teachings of revealed truth, as contained in the gospel of Jesus Christ. If we find in a school text claims that contradict the word of the Lord as pertaining to the creation of the world, the origin of man, or the determination of what is right or wrong in the conduct of human souls, we may be certain that such teachings are but the theories of men.” [7]

Prophetic Statements

“Adam and Eve were chosen to be the first people to live on the earth [8]. Their part in our Father’s plan was to bring mortality into the world. They were to be the first parents. [9] Adam and Eve were among our Father’s noblest children. In the spirit world. . . . The Lord promised Adam great blessings: “I have set thee to be at the head; a multitude of nations shall come of thee, and thou art a prince over them forever” [10]. . . . She was called Eve because she was the mother of all living[11]. When Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden, they were not yet mortal. They were not able to have children. There was no death.” [12]

Joseph Smith

“Commencing with Adam, who was the first man, who is spoken of in Daniel as being the “Ancient of Days,” or in other words, the first and oldest of all, the great, grand progenitor of whom it is said in another place he is Michael, because he was the first and father of all.” [13]

Brigham Young

“When our first parents fell from their paradisaical state, they were brought in contact with influences and powers of evil that are unnatural and stand in opposition to an endless life. So far as mankind yield to these influences, they are so far removed from a natural to an unnatural state—from life to death. Adam and Eve did not sin because it was in their nature to love sin, but, as Paul says in his Epistle to Timothy, “Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding, she shall be saved in child bearing, if they continue in faith, and charity, and holiness, with sobriety.” The enemy of all righteousness deceived the woman, and Adam went with her that man might be, and that she might be saved in child-bearing.” [14]

“In Adam—that is, if we believe this book (the Bible), and believe the history that Moses gave of our first parents, and of the inhabitants of the earth, which indeed we have to depend upon, for we are not in possession of any other history of our first parents, and are consequently obliged to refer to this history—if we believe this, I can say that as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all are made alive. If we can believe Moses and the Apostles, we die in consequence of sin in the conduct of our first parents, in eating that which they were forbidden to eat; that we are shut out and cannot see and understand heavenly beings. We cannot see their faces. We cannot hear their voices. We cannot behold their glory. We are shut out from this. The vail of mortality being dropped between us and the Creator, something has to be done so that we may return and behold those that are exalted.”[15]

“There are certain influences that we have no control over: man is controlled by surrounding influences in a greater or less degree. For instance, we cannot avert the consequences of the fall as it is called, of Adam, which came through his transgressing certain words or laws given to him by his Father and God. In consequence of this, sin came into the world, and death by sin. We are more or less controlled by the influences that have been introduced into the world by the power of Satan upon the children of men, and will be so long as we live in the flesh. . . . Just as long as we live within the purview of the reconciliation of the Spirit of God, that visits us from time to time, revealing the truth and the righteousness of our God, and yield to that and never cast it from us, whether we live or die, there is a salvation for us. There is a salvation for all the sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, no matter where they have lived or when, nor whether Christian, Mussulman, Jew, barbarian, or Gentile, that do not deny the power of God and sin against the Holy Ghost. . . . What power is legally ours? That which was given to Adam and the human family in former days. Power? Yes. Dominion? Yes. Glory? Yes. Honour? Yes. That which pertains to this world? Yes. That which pertains to the next? Yes.” [16]

“It is very true, had not sin entered into the world, and opposition been introduced, death would not have entered. From that time to this, death, opposition, selfishness, malice, anger, pride, darkness of every description that could be invented by the children of men, as they have multiplied and spread abroad in the earth, have increased.” [17]

“Mankind have the privilege of eternal life—the privilege to prepare themselves to dwell in the presence of the Father and Son—to dwell in eternal burnings, where all is pure and holy. No sin—no corruption can dwell there. Sin came through the fall, and death by sin; and they are warring against our spirits now in tabernacles, which warfare continues from childhood to death; and who will overcome?” [18]

“How did Adam and Eve sin? Did they come out in direct opposition to God and to his government? No. But they transgressed a command of the Lord, and through that transgression sin came into the world. . . . Then came the curse upon the fruit, upon the vegetables, and upon our mother earth; and it came upon the creeping things, upon the grain in the field, the fish in the sea, and upon all things pertaining to this earth, through Man’s transgression.” [19]

John Taylor

“Now, restoration signifies a bringing back, and must refer to something which existed before . . . when a prophet speaks of the restoration of all things, he means that all things have undergone a change, and are to be again restored to their primitive order, even as they first existed. . . . “First, then, it becomes necessary for us to take a view of creation, as it rolled in purity from the hand of its Creator; and if we can discover the true state in which it then existed, and understand the changes that have taken place since, then we shall be able to understand what is to be restored

. . . the beasts of the earth were all in perfect harmony with each other; the lion ate straw like the ox—the wolf dwelt with the lamb—the leopard lay down with the kid—the cow and bear fed together, in the same pasture . . . . all was peace and harmony, and nothing to hurt nor disturb, in all the holy mountain.

. . . the earth yielded neither noxious weeds nor poisonous plants, nor useless thorns and thistles; indeed, every thing that grew was just calculated for the food of man’ beast, fowl, and creeping thing; and their food was all vegetable

[Man] stood in the presence of his Maker, conversed with him face to face, and gazed upon his glory, without a dimming veil between.

Now, reader, contemplate the change. This scene, which was so beautiful a little before, had now become the abode of sorrow and toil, of death and mourning: the earth groaning with its production of accursed thorns and thistles; man and beast at enmity . . . . Soon man begins to persecute, hate, and murder his fellow; until at length the earth is filled with violence; all flesh becomes corrupt, the powers of darkness prevail . . .

But men have degenerated, and greatly changed, as well as the earth. The sins, the abominations, and the many evil habits of the latter ages, have added to the miseries, toils, and sufferings of human life. The idleness, extravagance, pride, covetousness, drunkenness, and other abominations, which are characteristics of the latter times, have all combined to sink mankind to the lowest state of wretchedness and degradation [20]

Wilford Woodruff

“I wish to say a few words on one of the verses I have read, the 22nd: “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” The world, more or less, has found a great deal of fault with Mother Eve and with Father Adam, because of the fall of man; what I have to say with regard to it, I express as my own opinion. Adam and Eve came to this world to perform exactly the part that they acted in the garden of Eden; and I will say, they were ordained of God to do what they did, and it was therefore expected that they would eat of the forbidden fruit in order that man might know both good and evil by passing through this school of experience which this life affords us. That is all I want to say about Father Adam and Mother Eve. Adam fell that man might be, and men are that they might have joy; and some have found fault with that. It has been said that God commanded Adam to multiply and replenish the earth; and it has been said that Adam was not under the necessity of falling in order to multiply and replenish the earth, but you will understand that the woman was deceived and not the man; and according to the justice of God she would have been cast out into the lowly and dreary world alone, and thus the first great command could not have been complied with unless Adam had partaken of the forbidden fruit. We acknowledge that through Adam all have died, that death through the fall must pass upon the whole human family, also upon the beasts of the field, the fishes of the sea and the fowls of the air and all the works of God, as far as this earth is concerned. It is a law that is unchangeable and irrevocable. . . . There was no prophet, no saint or sinner, from the days of Father Adam to the days of Jesus that ever rose from the dead through the keys and power of the resurrection. Although we read of some who were restored to life, but this was not what is termed the resurrection.

With regard to redemption, Paul said: All the children of Adam are redeemed from the fall by the atoning blood of Jesus, and all infants are redeemed as well as other people. . . . What is the Gospel as taught by Jesus himself? The very first principle was faith in the Messiah; this was the first principle ever taught to man. When Adam, after being driven from the garden of Eden, went to Adam-ondi-Ahman to offer sacrifice, the angel of the Lord asked him why he did so. Adam replied that he did not know, but the Lord had commanded him to do it. He was then told that the blood of bulls and goats, of rams and lambs should be spilt upon the altar as a type of the great and last sacrifice which should be offered up for the sins of the world. The first principle, then, ever taught to Father Adam was faith in the Messiah, who was to come in the meridian of time to lay down his life for the redemption of man. [21]

“We acknowledge that through Adam all have died, that death through the fall must pass upon the whole human family, also upon the beasts of the field, the fishes of the sea and the fowls of the air and all the works of God, as far as this earth is concerned. It is a law that is unchangeable and irrevocable…The Savior himself tasted of death; He died to redeem the world; His body was laid in the tomb, but it did not see corruption; and after three days it arose from the grave and put on immortality. He was the first fruit of the resurrection.” [22]

“We read that in Adam all died, and that in Christ all were made alive. Jesus has died to redeem all men; but in order that they may be benefited by His death, and that His blood may cleanse them from all actual sin committed in the flesh, they must abide the law of the Gospel. The sins done through Adam we have been redeemed from by the blood of Christ; and in order to obtain salvation we must be obedient and faithful to the precepts of the Gospel.” [23]

Joseph F. Smith

“In this natural body are the seeds of weakness and decay, which, when fully ripened or untimely plucked up, in the language of scripture, is called “the temporal death.” The spirit is also subject to what is termed in the scriptures and revelations from God, “spiritual death.” The same as that which befell our first parents, when through disobedience and transgression, they became subject to the will of Satan, and were thrust out from the presence of the Lord and became spiritually dead, which the Lord says, “is the first death, even that same death which is the last death, which is spiritual, which shall be pronounced upon the wicked when I shall say, Depart, ye cursed!” And the Lord further says, “But, behold I say unto you, that I the Lord God gave unto Adam and unto his seed, that they should not die as to the temporal death until I the Lord God should send forth angels to declare unto them repentance and redemption from the first death through faith on the name of mine only begotten Son. And thus did I, the Lord God, appoint unto man the days of his probation, that by his natural death he might be raised in immortality unto eternal life, even as many as would believe, and they that believe not unto eternal damnation, for they cannot be redeemed from their spiritual fall because they repent not.” . . . If men will not repent and come unto Christ, through the ordinances of His Gospel, they cannot be redeemed from their spiritual fall, but must remain forever subject to the will of Satan and the consequent spiritual darkness or death into which our first parents fell, subjecting all their posterity thereto, and from which none can be redeemed but by belief or faith on the name of the “only Begotten Son” and obedience to the laws of God.” [24]

“It was instituted by the Savior in the place of the law of sacrifice which was given to Adam, and which continued with his children down to the days of Christ, but which was fulfilled in his death, he being the great sacrifice for sin, of which the sacrifices enjoined in the law given to Adam were a similitude.

The Lord designed in the beginning to place before man the knowledge of good and evil, and gave him a commandment to cleave to good and abstain from evil. But if he should fail, he would give to him the law of sacrifice and provide a Savior for him, that he might be brought back again into the presence and favor of God and partake of eternal life with him. This was the plan of redemption chosen and instituted by the Almighty before man was placed on the earth. And when man did fall by transgressing the law which was given him, the Lord gave to him the law of sacrifice, and made it clear to his understanding, that it was for the purpose of reminding him of that great event that should transpire in the meridian of time, whereby he and all his posterity might be brought forth by the power of redemption and the resurrection from the dead, and partake of eternal life with God in his kingdom. For this reason Adam and his posterity, from generation to generation, observed this law, and continually looked forward to a time when there should be provided for them a means of redemption from the fall and restoration from death to life, for death was the penalty of the law transgressed, which man was powerless to avert, the fiat of God being, “In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die,” and this penalty was to follow upon all flesh, all being as helpless and dependent as he was in this matter. . . . In anticipation, therefore, of this great sacrifice which was to be offered for Adam and his seed, they offered sacrifices, more or less acceptably, and in conformity to the pattern given, in proportion to the knowledge of God and of the gospel which they had, and their faithfulness from generation to generation, to the days of Jesus. . . . How do we know that the Bible accounts of Adam and the succeeding generations are correct? How do we know anything pertaining to God and his dealings with men anciently? We know many things by tradition, naturally, by intuition. “There is a spirit in man, and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth it understanding.” There is an inherent principle in man that leads him to faith in a superior or a Supreme Being, who has designed and created all things. The Bible account, being the most rational and indeed only historical one of the creation and the dealings of God with men, we are constrained to accept it, in the main, as truth. Then we behold the wonderful works of God spread out before us, the starry heavens, the sun and moon, the earth on which we dwell, and its times and seasons, its fruits and grains, its herbs and varied productions, its fountains and rivers, mountains, valleys and plains, and the mighty deep, all teeming with life and animation; also the laws that govern these vast creations, and man, the crowning work of God, on this earth, the masterpiece, if you please, whom inspiration teaches us, is the offspring of that eternal being who is the Creator of all things, he being the most perfect in his organization, possessing greater attributes, powers of reason, and intelligence than all other beings, constituting him the “lord of creation,” and the nearest in resemblance to the Creator. We look at these things and we cannot but come to the conclusion that this is not the work of chance, but the result of matured omniscient designs and purposes, that man is the son of God, possessing the attributes and image of his Father, and in the beginning much of this intelligence, insomuch that he was the companion and associate of God and dwelt with him, and knew no sin. The Lord gave him the earth as a possession and an inheritance, and laws for his government, that he might fill the measure of his creation and have joy therein.

We look at these things in this manner, and they appear rational and true, and we are convinced that they are true, that the Scriptures, the Bible and Book of Mormon, are of divine origin.

But is this all we have to convince us of the truth of these things, and to confirm upon our minds the principles laid down as the Gospel of Christ, which is called “Mormonism?” These are the only means of knowing in regard to the truth of religion that the world claim to have, or that we had prior to becoming acquainted with the doctrines of this Church, and we were in a measure satisfied because it was the best light we possessed. There are thousands of the most intelligent and best educated men that live, and some of the greatest and brightest minds in many nations now engaged in the dissemination of what they believe to be the Gospel of Jesus Christ, claiming no other means of knowing the truth, than tradition and reason, and they appear to be satisfied with their convictions and faith. Millions of dollars are expended annually in promulgating their religion, they “compass land and sea to make proselytes,” with no other acknowledged evidence of the truth of the Bible, or of the divine mission of Jesus Christ, than that I have cited.

But we go farther than this, although to my mind this mode of reasoning is conclusive so far as it goes, and no doubt is left as to the existence of our Father and God, or that he created all things for a wise purpose, for his glory, and for the glory and happiness of his children, that the earth and the fullness thereof are God’s, although designed for man and his use, and finally to be given to him as an everlasting inheritance, when he shall, through obedience, prove worthy of it. But, as I said before, we go farther than this—there is “a more sure word of prophecy, where unto we do well to take heed.” There is revelation, a means of direct communication from God to man, a power which can rend the veil between us and God, open the eyes of our understanding, and bring us into proximity to him, so that we may know him as he is, and learn from his own mouth and from the mouths of his holy messengers his laws and will concerning us, as anciently. This is the principle by which Adam knew God in the garden where he was placed in the beginning. God came to him day by day, and conversed with him as one man converses with another, giving him instructions and counsel, for man was pure. And when he was cast out, God did not forsake him, but appeared to him, sent his angels to communicate with him concerning the plan of salvation, and gave him the Holy Ghost to be a light in his path through the world, made dreary to him by being banished from the immediate presence of God.” [25]

“From the first man Adam, down to the latest inspired man of God of which we have any account in the Scriptures, they were all chosen, so far as my knowledge goes, when they were in their youth. . . . No doubt all the prominent men who have figured in any dispensation of the Gospel since the days of our father, Adam, until the present, were inspired of the Almighty from their childhood, and were chosen and selected even from or before their birth. God has His eye upon the world; He over-rules and controls all things, notwithstanding He is shut out from the councils of men by their unbelief. . . . There is not a soul that has escaped death, except those upon whom God has passed, by the power of His Spirit, that they should live in the flesh until the second coming of the Son of Man: but they will eventually have to pass through the ordeal called death; it may be in the twinkling of an eye, and without pain or suffering; but they will pass through the change, because it is an irrevocable edict of the Almighty. “In the day that thou eatest thou shalt surely die.” This was the edict of the Almighty, and it pertains to Adam—that is, all the human race; for Adam is many, and it means you and me and every soul that lives and that bears the image of the Father. We shall all die.” [26]

“Death came upon us without the exercise of our agency; we had no hand in bringing it originally upon ourselves; it came because of the transgression of our first parents. Therefore, man, who had no hand in bringing death upon himself, shall have no hand in bringing again life unto himself; for as he dies in consequence of the sin of Adam, so shall he live again, whether he will or not, by the righteousness of Jesus Christ, and the power of his resurrection.” [27]

“Not until he has redeemed and saved every son and daughter of our father Adam that has or ever will be born upon this earth to the end of time, except the sons of perdition. That is his mission. . . . When Adam partook of the forbidden fruit he was cast out from the presence of God into outer darkness; that is, he was shut out from the presence of his glory and the privilege of his society, which was spiritual death. This was the first death; this indeed was death; for he was shut out from the presence of God, and ever since Adam’s posterity have been suffering the penalty of this spiritual death, which is banishment from his presence and the society of holy beings. This first death will also be the second death.” [28]

“Adam and his posterity…continually looked forward to a time when there should be provided for them a means of redemption from the fall and restoration from death to life, for death was the penalty of the law transgressed, which man was powerless to avert, that fiat of God being, “In the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die, and this penalty was to follow upon all flesh, all being as helpless and dependent as he was in this matter. Their only hope of redemption from the grave and the power of death was in the Savior whom God had promised.” [29]

“So it will be with you and with every son and daughter of Adam, born into the world. You will not lose your identity any more than Christ did. You will be brought forth from death to life again, just as sure as Christ was brought forth from death to life again, just as surely as those who ministered to the Prophet Joseph Smith had been raised from death to life—therefore, in the same manner in which Christ has been raised, so will life, and the resurrection from death to life again, come upon all who have descended from our first parents. The death that came into the world by Adam’s transgression has been conquered, and its terror vanquished by the power and righteousness of the Son of God.” [30]

“[Quoted Alma 11:40–45 ]
Now that is the doctrine of the Latter-day Saints. That is the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and, as he is the first fruits of the resurrection from the dead, as he was raised up, so will he raise up all the children of his Father upon whom the curse of Adam came. For as by one man came temporal death upon all men, so by the righteousness of Christ all shall come to life, through the resurrection from the dead upon all men; whether they be good or whether they be evil, whether they be black or white, bond or free, learned or unlearned, or whether they be young or old, it matters not. The death that came by the fall of our first parents is eradicated by the resurrection of the Son of God, and you and I cannot help it.—Journal of Discourses, October 26, 1867.” [31]

“And when man did fall by transgressing the law which was given him, the Lord gave to him the law of sacrifice, and made it clear to his understanding, that it was for the purpose of reminding him of that great event that should transpire in the meridian of time, whereby he and all his posterity might be brought forth by the power of redemption and resurrection from the dead, and partake of eternal life with God in his kingdom. For this reason Adam and his posterity, from generation to generation, observed this law, and continually looked forward to a time when there should be provided for them a means of redemption from the fall and restoration from death to life, for death was the penalty of the law transgressed, which man was powerless to avert, that fiat of God being, “In the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die,” and this penalty was to follow upon all flesh, all being as helpless and dependent as he was in this matter.” [32]

“Adam became spiritually dead, yet he lived to endure it until freed therefrom by the power of the atonement, through repentance, etc. Those upon whom the second death shall fall will live to suffer and endure it, but without hope of redemption. The death of the body, or natural death, is but a temporary circumstance to which all were subjected through the fall, and from which all will be restored or resurrected by the power of God, through the atonement of Christ.” [33]

“And the Lord further says, “But, behold I say unto you, that I the Lord God gave unto Adam and unto his seed, that they should not die as to the temporal death until I the Lord God should send forth angels to declare unto them repentance and redemption (from the first death) through faith on the name of mine only begotten Son. And thus did I, the Lord God, appoint unto man the days of his probation, that by his natural death he might be raised in immortality unto eternal life, even as many as would believe, and they that believe not unto eternal damnation, for they cannot be redeemed from their spiritual fall because they repent not.” . . . Adam became spiritually dead, yet he lived to endure it until freed therefrom by the power of the atonement, through repentance, etc.” [34]

George Albert Smith

“As we understand it the term ‘ first flesh,’ does not have reference to Adam as being the first living creature of the creation on the earth, but that he, through the ‘ fall ‘ became the first ‘ flesh,’ or mortal soul. The term ‘ flesh ‘ in reference to mortal existence is of common usage. We find it so used in the scriptures. Adam having partaken of the fruit became mortal and subject to death, which was not the condition until that time. We are taught in the Temple as well as in the scriptures that man was the last creation placed upon the earth, before death was introduced. Adam was the first to partake of the change and to become subject to the flesh.” [35]

Joseph Fielding Smith

“NO DEATH ON EARTH BEFORE FALL. The Lord pronounced the earth good when it was finished. Everything upon its face was called good. There was no death in the earth before the fall of Adam. I do not care what the scientists say in regard to dinosaurs and other creatures upon the earth millions of years ago, that lived and died and fought and struggled for existence. When the earth was created and was declared good, peace was upon its face among all its creatures. Strife and wickedness were not found here, neither was there any corruption.” [36]

“APOSTASY COMES WHEN TRUTH NOT TAUGHT. Modern education declares that there never was such a thing as the fall of man, but that conditions have always gone on in the same way as now in this mortal world. Here, say they, death and mutation have always held sway as natural conditions on this earth and everywhere throughout the universe the same laws obtain. It is declared that man has made his ascent to the exalted place he now occupies through countless ages of development which has gradually distinguished him from lower forms of life.

Such a doctrine of necessity discards the story of Adam and the Garden of Eden, which it looks upon as a myth coming down to us from an early age of foolish ignorance and superstition. Moreover, it is taught that since death was always here, and a natural condition prevailing throughout all space, there could not possibly come a redemption from Adam’s transgression, hence there was no need for a Savior for a fallen world.

Is it any wonder, under such circumstances, that churches are deserted; that more than half of the population of this country has become indifferent, if not antagonistic, to religion? This, also, is just as true of other lands.” [37]

“So now, in the twentieth century, the doctrines of the critics of the Bible and the teachings of the organic evolutionists, have gained the ascendancy in the scientific world. It is true that in former years we lived in a Christian nation, the fact persists that now many Christian ministers, so-called, have been caught in the web of modernism and organic evolution and have rejected the fundamental doctrines of Christianity; and they, like the Christians in the days of Rome, have mingled their religious views with these modern (pagan) teachings. Because of the influence of destructive criticism and these theories of the descent of man, many ministers have rejected the fall of Adam, the atonement of Jesus Christ, and the resurrection of the dead. In fact they have come to the point where they have discarded the doctrine of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and that he is the Only Begotten Son of God. Their Christianity, filled with abundant errors before, has sunk to a lower level. These advocates of modernism and evolutionary teachings, glory in the fact that their influence has helped to eliminate from Christianity, the “dogma of Adam’s fall,” and the “legendary husks and rinds of our sacred books.” fn One day, when they come to the judgment, they will have to give an accounting for all this mischief they have done. It may be imagined how they will feel, when they are forced to confront the thousands who have been turned away from faith in God and acceptance of his divine plan of salvation, because these enemies of truth were eager to destroy the scriptures and the mission of Jesus Christ. If great joy will be felt by the individual who has, through his humble effort, saved one soul, then how great must be the remorse of these learned men when they discover that their efforts have been the means of destroying thousands of souls?

This brings us to the discussion of what I believe to be the most pernicious doctrine ever entering the mind of man: the theory that man evolved from the lower forms of life. For its source we must go beyond the activities and research of mortal man to the author of evil, who has been an enemy of truth from the beginning before the earth was formed.” [38]

“IF EVOLUTION IS TRUE, THE CHURCH IS FALSE. If life began on the earth, as advocated by Darwin, Huxley, Haeckel (who has been caught openhanded perpetrating a fraud), and others of this school, whether by chance or by some designing hand, then the doctrines of the Church are false. Then there was no Garden of Eden, no Adam and Eve, and no fall. If there was no fall; if death did not come into the world as the scriptures declared that it did—and to be consistent, if you are an evolutionist, this view you must assume—then there was no need for a redemption, and Jesus Christ is not the Son of God, and he did not die for the transgression of Adam, nor for the sins of the world. Then there has been no resurrection from the dead! Consistently, logically, there is no other view, no alternative that can be taken. Now, my brethren and sisters, are you prepared to take this view?” [39]

“Adam, our first parent,—and I believe that doctrine very firmly, which is now discounted in the world—through his transgression brought into the world death, and through death came suffering and sin. The first death that was pronounced upon him was banishment from the presence of the Lord. For Adam died two deaths, a spiritual death, or banishment from the presence of God, which is the first death, and which is like the second death which will be pronounced upon the wicked when they are cast out of the presence of the Lord; and he also died the mortal death.

Modern education declares that there never was such a thing as the “fall” of man, but that conditions have always gone on in the same way as now in this mortal world. Here, say they, death and mutation have always held sway as natural conditions on this earth and everywhere throughout the universe the same laws obtain. It is declared that man has made his ascent to the exalted place he now occupies through countless ages of development which has gradually distinguished him from lower forms of life. Such a doctrine of necessity discards the story a Adam and the Garden of Eden, which it looks upon as a myth coming down to us from an early age of foolish ignorance and superstition. Moreover, it is taught that since death was always here, and a natural condition prevailing throughout all space, there could not possibly come a redemption from Adam’s transgression, hence there was no need for a Savior for a fallen world.” [40]

“Did Adam bring death into the world? Are we laboring under a misapprehension? Are we wrong? Is it true that millions of years before Adam came into the world death was here? . . . Are these scriptures true? Are these brethren true—and I have quoted three of the Presidents of the Church, including the Prophet [Joseph Smith] himself? Are they true, or are we to discard their teachings and the teachings of the scriptures because the philosophies of men today declare a contrary doctrine?”[41]

“APOSTASY COMES WHEN TRUTH NOT TAUGHT. Modern education declares that there never was such a thing as the fall of man, but that conditions have always gone on in the same way as now in this mortal world. Here, say they, death and mutation have always held sway as natural conditions on this earth and everywhere throughout the universe the same laws obtain. It is declared that man has made his ascent to the exalted place he now occupies through countless ages of development which has gradually distinguished him from lower forms of life.

Such a doctrine of necessity discards the story of Adam and the Garden of Eden, which it looks upon as a myth coming down to us from an early age of foolish ignorance and superstition. Moreover, it is taught that since death was always here, and a natural condition prevailing throughout all space, there could not possibly come a redemption from Adam’s transgression, hence there was no need for a Savior for a fallen world.

Is it any wonder, under such circumstances, that churches are deserted; that more than half of the population of this country has become indifferent, if not antagonistic, to religion? This, also, is just as true of other lands.” [42]

“Another thing I wish to say. A man cannot serve God and mammon. Organic evolution is destructive of faith in God. It is rebellion against him. Those who accept this pernicious doctrine cannot consistently believe in the fall of Adam. If they do not believe in the fall of Adam they cannot believe in Jesus Christ, for if Adam had not transgressed the law under which he was placed on this earth, there would have been no occasion for a redemption. How could Adam be redeemed from something that never happened. We are taught that had not Adam partaken of the forbidden fruit all things would have remained in the condition in which they were before the fall. Here is the passage:

The first death, spiritual death, came upon him at the time of his transgression. The mortal death did not overtake him for many many many years, for the Lord granted unto him a time of probation in which he was taught and instructed in the principles of the gospel and given a chance to repent, to show through his faithfulness his worthiness of redemption, and to be brought back again into the presence of God his father.

The great honor to come here and be the first parents of all men was given to Adam and Eve. They were placed by the Father in the Garden of Eden where there was no death. Adam and Eve in the condition in which they were when placed in the Garden of Eden could have lived there forever if they had not broken a law, but they would have lived alone and would have had no children. [43][44]The Lord told them they could eat the fruit of every tree in the garden except the fruit of the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” and if they did eat this fruit they would surely die. Satan tempted them and they ate this fruit and broke this commandment. By doing this a change came over their bodies and they became subject to death, as the Lord has said, and they were driven out of the garden. After they were driven out children were born to them and they have spread over all the earth. All the children inherited death from our first parents, so we will all have to die as our ancestors have done before us. This made it necessary that something be done to redeem us from death and restore us to life again where there would be no death, for this trangression of Adam and Eve, placed all of us subject to Satan’s power after death.” [45]

“Any theory that presents as a fact a statement that man has evolved from other forms, and has not always been a sentient being, capable of thought, of reasoning, is in conflict with the word of the Lord, as has been pointed out already by Elder Taylor in his remarks here yesterday. Any doctrine that presents a view contrary to that which has been given by revelation, that Adam was placed in the Garden of Eden, that by violation of the law he brought death into the world, and through that death sin and all the vicissitudes of mortality have come,—such a doctrine is in conflict with the revealed word of God.

Any doctrine that declares that man has always been a fallen creature, or in other words, subject to the mortal conditions as we find them today, strikes at the vitals of the Christian faith. Any doctrine that will say there was no Garden of Eden, no need of Adam, no transgression by our first parents, also teaches that there is no redemption from the fall and that the need of Jesus Christ as the Redeemer is unnecessary. If there had been no fall there would have been no redemption; there would have been no need of Jesus Christ coming, as he declared he did come, and as it has been declared by the prophets, to repair a broken law and to restore again that which was lost and to redeem men from the fallen condition. I think what I say is logical, reasonable, and above all, it is scriptural.” [46]

“When Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden, they did not have to die. They could have been there to this day. They could have continued on for countless ages. There was no death then. But it would have been a terrific calamity if they had refrained from taking the fruit of that tree, for they would have stayed in the Garden of Eden and we would not be here—nobody would be here except Adam and Eve. So Adam and Eve partook. Eating of that forbidden fruit subdued the power of the spirit and created blood in their bodies. No blood was in their bodies before the Fall. The blood became the life of the body. And the blood was not only the life thereof, but it had in it the seeds of death. And so we grow old and we die. But it would have been a dreadful thing if Adam and his posterity had been forced, because of the Fall, to die and remain dead; that would have been the case had there been no redemption.” [47]

“If death was always here, then Adam did not bring it, and he could not be punished for it. If Adam did not fall, there was no Christ, because the atonement of Jesus Christ is based on the fall of Adam. And so we face these problems. If there is anybody here that believes that death has always been going on, and that sin was always here, he will have a difficult time to explain Adam and the fall, or the atonement. You see from these writings what a dreadful state these men get in when they do not believe in the fall and the introduction of sin into the world.” [48]

“At this season of the year the attention of Christians everywhere is centered on the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is well that it is so; for this is the most important event that ever occurred in our fallen world. When Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden, there was no death. It was by the violation of a commandment that brought mortality and death upon them. The Lord said to them:

‘. . . Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.’ [49]

After they had eaten the Lord cursed the ground for their sakes and said:

‘In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the round; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.’ [50]” [51]

“Then what is meant by the “first flesh”? It is simple when you understand it. Adam was the first of all creatures to fall and become flesh, and flesh in this sense means mortality, and all through our scriptures the Lord speaks of this life as flesh, while we are here in the flesh, so Adam became the first flesh. There was no other mortal creature before him, and there was no mortal death until he brought it . . . ” [52]

“The mortal death passed upon all men through the transgression of Adam, and every man is subject to death. Being subject to death and to sin, it is impossible for us by any act of ours to redeem ourselves from death or from our own individual sins. We are absolutely helpless. Every man that has been born into the world since the days of Adam, save the Lord Jesus Christ, has been subject to death, and under the transgression of his own sins, without the power in and of himself to redeem himself from either situation.” [53]

“And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained for ever and had no end.” [54]

“. . . so they guess that once many millions of years ago, life must have come on the earth spontaneously. They have no proof, they can discover no proof, and before any court where justice is dispensed and evidence is required, their case would have to be thrown out of court. In all seriousness, their case has been thrown out of court before the Just Judge who rules both on earth and in the heavens; and the day is not far distant when the advocates of this pernicious doctrine will have to answer for the countless souls they have blinded by their craftiness and turned away from worshiping the Living God!” [55]

“THEORY OF EVOLUTION DENIES CHRIST. Then Adam, and by that I mean the first man, was not capable of sin. He could not transgress, and by doing so bring death into the world; for, according to this theory, death had always been in the world. If, therefore, there was no fall, there was no need of an atonement, hence the coming into the world of the Son of God as the Savior of the world is a contradiction, a thing impossible. Are you prepared to believe such a thing as that? Do you believe that the first man was a savage? That he lacked in the power of intelligence? That he has been on the constant road of progression? These are the teachings of such theorists.” [56]

“Perhaps it will be profitable to list a few of the basic, revealed truths concerning the origin and destiny of man and of all life — truths which are not taken into consideration by evolutionists in their theorizing and which, in most instances, are diametrically opposed to the speculative conclusions reached by them. . . . Before the fall there was neither death nor procreation. Plants, animals, and man would have continued living forever unless a change of condition overtook them; and in their then immortal condition they could not have reproduced, each after its own kind. Death and procreation pertain to mortality, that is, to the status and type of existence attained by all forms of life subsequent to the fall.

Lehi said: “If Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained forever, and had no end. And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin. But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things. Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy. And the Messiah cometh in the fullness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall.” [57]

Eve expressed the same truth in this language: “Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient.” [58]

Adam’s fall brought temporal (natural) and spiritual death into the world. The temporal or natural death means that body and spirit separate, the spirit going to a world of waiting spirits to await the day of the resurrection, the body returning to the dust, the primal element, from which it was taken. The effects of this fall passed upon all created things. “Adam was appointed Lord of this creation,” Orson Pratt says, “a great governor, swaying the scepter of power over the whole earth. When the governor, the person who was placed to reign over this fair creation, had transgressed, all in his dominion had to feel the effects of it, the same as a father or a mother, who transgresses certain laws, frequently transmits the effects thereof to the latest generations.” [59]

“Thus when man fell the earth fell together with all forms of life on its face. Death entered; procreation began; the probationary experiences of mortality had their start. Before this fall there was neither mortality, nor birth, nor death, nor — for that matter — did Adam so much as have blood in his veins (and the same would be true for other forms of life), for blood is an element pertaining only to mortality.” [60]

Harold B. Lee

This statement on the Fall was placed in the Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Harold B. Lee, manual in 2000.

“Adam and Eve … exercised their agency and of their own volition had partaken of the fruit, of which they were commanded not to eat; thus they had become subject to the law of Satan. In that disobedience, God was now free to visit upon them a judgment. They were to learn that besides God being a merciful Father, he is also a just Father, and when they broke the law they were subject to the receiving of a penalty and so they were cast out of that beautiful garden. They were visited by all the vicissitudes to which mortals from that time since have been heir. They were to learn that by their disobedience they received the penalty of a just judgment. They were forced to earn their bread by the sweat of their brow, for now they had become mortals…Pain, misery, death, all now came in their wake, but with that pain, quite like our own experiences from that time to this, there came knowledge and understanding that could never have been gained except by pain…Besides the Fall having had to do with Adam and Eve, causing a change to come over them, that change affected all human nature, all of the natural creations, all of the creation of animals, plants—all kinds of life were changed. The earth itself became subject to death. … How it took place no one can explain, and anyone who would attempt to make an explanation would be going far beyond anything the Lord has told us. But a change was wrought over the whole face of the creation, which up to that time had not been subject to death. From that time henceforth all in nature was in a state of gradual dissolution until mortal death was to come, after which there would be required a restoration in a resurrected state.” [61]

“[In the Garden of Eden] Adam and Eve, as an organized, intelligent man and woman, were here in “unmortality,” as we might say, for the purpose of becoming mortal and, through the plan of salvation, eventually returning back to the presence of the Lord. To become mortal required the interplay of free agency. Having partaken of the forbidden fruit, which was to eventually bring about the dissolution of their bodies, they became subject to death—not immediately, but after the span of their life. Now with mortal blood they beget children. Without mortality, they could not have had children and the great plan of salvation by which spirit children would come to tabernacles in the flesh would have been nullified.” [62]

“By way of the Fall, the opportunity for eternal life was opened. Besides the Fall having had to do with Adam and Eve, causing a change to come over them, that change affected all human nature, all of the natural creations, all of the creation of animals, plants—all kinds of life were changed. The earth itself became subject to death, that it might be cleansed likewise. How it took place no one can explain, and anyone who would attempt to make an explanation would be going far beyond anything the Lord has told us. But a change was wrought over the whole face of that creation, which up to that time had not been subject to death; and from that time henceforth all in nature was in a state of gradual dissolution until mortal death was to come, after which there would be required a restoration in a resurrected state.

Parley P. Pratt speaks about that change. He describes it thus: “We can never understand precisely what is meant by restoration, unless we understand what is lost or taken away.” And then he describes how the earth was pronounced very good. “From this we learn that there were neither deserts, barren places, stagnant swamps, rough, broken, rugged hills, nor vast mountains, covered with eternal snow; and no part of it was located in the frigid zone so as to render its climate dreary and unproductive, subject to eternal frost, or everlasting chains of ice. The whole earth was probably one vast plain, or interspersed with gently rising hills and sloping vales, well calculated for cultivation.” He is describing what he surmises may have been the glory of the Creation.” [63]

President Harold B. Lee was a strong supporter of Joseph Fielding Smith’s book Man, His Origin and Destiny. President Lee also taught the following in a First Presidency Message as the President of the Church:

“I was somewhat sorrowed recently to hear someone, a sister who comes from a church family, ask, “What about the pre-Adamic people?” Here was someone who I thought was fully grounded in the faith. I asked, “What about the pre-Adamic people?” She replied, “Well, aren’t there evidences that people preceded the Adamic period of the earth?” I said, “Have you forgotten the scripture that says, ‘And I, the Lord God, formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul, the first flesh upon the earth, the first man also….’ ”[64] I asked, “Do you believe that?” She wondered about the creation because she had read the theories of the scientists, and the question that she was really asking was: How do you reconcile science with religion? The answer must be, If science is not true, you cannot reconcile truth with error.” [65]

“We [must] measure every teaching to be found in the world of book learning by the teachings of revealed truth, as contained in the gospel of Jesus Christ. If we find in a school text claims that contradict the word of the Lord as pertaining to the creation of the world, the origin of man, or the determination of what is right or wrong in the conduct of human souls, we may be certain that such teachings are but the theories of men.” [66]

Spencer W. Kimball

“Our first parents, Adam and Eve, disobeyed God. By eating the forbidden fruit, they became mortal. Consequently, they and all of their descendants became subject to both mortal and spiritual death (mortal death, the separation of body and spirit; and spiritual death the separation of the spirit from the presence of God and death as pertaining to the things of the spirit). In order for Adam to regain his original state (to be in the presence of God), an atonement for this disobedience was necessary. In God’s divine plan, provision was made for a redeemer to break the bonds of death and, through the resurrection, make possible the reunion of the spirits and bodies of all persons who had dwelt on earth. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” [67]” [68]

“As in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive. Adam and Eve transgressed a law and were responsible for a change that came to all their posterity, that of mortality. Could it have been the different food which made the change? Somehow blood, the life-giving element in our bodies, replaced the finer substance which coursed through their bodies before. They and we became mortal, subject to illness, pains, and even the physical dissolution called death.” [69][70]

“When Adam intentionally and wisely partook of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, he brought upon all of us, his descendants, two deaths-the physical or “mortal death,” and the spiritual death or the banishment from the presence of the Lord.” [71]

“God has given us a plan. He has sent us all to earth to obtain bodies and to gain experience and growth. He anticipated the fall of Adam and Eve and the consequent change in their mortal condition and provided his Son Jesus Christ to redeem man from the effects of the fall.” [72]

“Jesus of Nazareth was the one who, before the world was created, was chosen to come to earth to perform this service, to conquer mortal death. This voluntary action would atone for the fall of Adam and Eve and permit the spirit of man to recover his body, thereby reuniting body and spirit.” [73] [74]

Ezra Taft Benson

“I am deeply concerned about what we are doing to teach the Saints at all levels the gospel of Jesus Christ as completely and authoritatively as do the Book of Mormon and the Doctrine and Covenants. By this I mean teaching the “great plan of the Eternal God,” to use the words of Amulek [75]. Are we using the messages and the method of teaching found in the Book of Mormon and other scriptures of the Restoration to teach this great plan of the Eternal God?

There are many examples of teaching this great plan, but I will quote just one. It is Mormon’s summary statement of Aaron’s work as a missionary:

And it came to pass that when Aaron saw that the king would believe his words, he began from the creation of Adam, reading the scriptures unto the king-how God created man after his own image, and that God gave him commandments, and that because of transgression, man had fallen.

And since man had fallen he could not merit anything of himself; but the sufferings and death of Christ atone for their sins, through faith and repentance. [76]

The Book of Mormon Saints knew that the plan of redemption must start with the account of the fall of Adam. In the words of Moroni, “By Adam came the fall of man. And because of the fall of man came Jesus Christ . . . and because of Jesus Christ came the redemption of man.” [77]

<>Just as a man does not really desire food until he is hungry, so he does not desire the salvation of Christ until he knows why he needs Christ. No one adequately and properly knows why he needs Christ until he understands and accepts the doctrine of the Fall and its effect upon all mankind. And no other book in the world explains this vital doctrine nearly as well as the Book of Mormon.
We all need to take a careful inventory of our performance and also the performance of those over whom we preside to be sure that we are teaching the “great plan of the Eternal God” to the Saints. Are we accepting and teaching what the revelations tell us about the Creation, Adam and the fall of man, and redemption from that fall through the atonement of Christ? Do we frequently review the crucial questions which Alma asks the members of the Church in the fifth chapter of Alma in the Book of Mormon?” [78]

“In the twentieth section of the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord devotes several verses to summarizing the vital truths which the Book of Mormon teaches. [79] It speaks of God, the creation of man, the Fall, the Atonement, the ascension of Christ into heaven, prophets, faith, repentance, baptism, the Holy Ghost, endurance, prayer, justification and sanctification through grace, and loving and serving God.

We must know these essential truths. Aaron and Ammon and their brethren in the Book of Mormon taught these same kinds of truths to the Lamanite people [80], who were “in the darkest abyss” [81]. After accepting these eternal truths, the Book of Mormon states, those converted Lamanites never did fall away. [82]” [83]

“The first marriage performed was the marriage of two immortal beings.” [84]

“The gospel can be viewed from two perspectives. In the broadest sense, the gospel embraces all truth, all light, all revealed knowledge to mankind. In a more restrictive sense, the gospel means the doctrine of the Fall, the consequences of the fall of man that brought into the world physical and spiritual death, the atonement of Jesus Christ which brings to pass immortality and eternal life, and the ordinances of salvation.” [85]

Howard W. Hunter

“The Old Testament unfolds the story of the creation of the earth and mankind by God. Should we now disregard this account and modernize the creation according to the theories of the modernists? Can we say there was no Garden of Eden or an Adam and Eve? Because modernists now declare the story of the flood is unreasonable and impossible, should we disbelieve the account of Noah and the flood as related in the Old Testament? Let us examine what the Master said when the disciples came to him as he sat on the Mount of Olives. They asked him to tell them of the time of his coming and of the end of the world. Jesus answered: “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” [86] In this statement the Master confirmed the story of the flood without modernizing it. Can we accept some of the statements of the Lord as being true and at the same time reject others as being false? When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, and they discussed the matter of the death of her brother and the resurrection. Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” [87] Both of these statements, the one regarding Noah and the fact of the flood and the one in which he declared himself to be the resurrection and the life, were made by the Lord. How can we believe one and not the other? How can we modernize the story of the flood, or refer to it as a myth, and yet cling to the truth of the other? How can we modernize the Bible and still have it be a guiding light to us and a vital influence in our beliefs? There are those who declare it is old-fashioned to believe in the Bible. Is it old-fashioned to believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God? Is it old-fashioned to believe in his atoning sacrifice and the resurrection? If it is, I declare myself to be old-fashioned and the Church to be old-fashioned. In great simplicity, the Master taught the principles of life eternal and lessons that bring happiness to those with the faith to believe.” [88]

Darwinist and Neo-Darwinist

Scripture

Bible Dictionary: Flesh– The flesh is often spoken of as being a part of our mortal or fallen nature (as in Matthew 26:41 ; Romns 7: 5, 14-23 ; Romans 8: 3 ; 1 Corinthians 3: 1–2 ; Ephesians 2: 3); as opposed to the Spirit (Romans 8: 5–9 ; Galatians 3: 3 ; Galatians 5: 17–25 ), and as needing to be overcome (Matthew 4: 4 ; Romans 8: 7, 12–13 ; Galatians 5: 17, 24 ; Galatians 6: 8 ;Colossians 2: 11 ; Colossians 3: 5 ; 1 Peter 4: 2 ; 1 John 2: 16–17 ). Since flesh often means mortality, Adam is spoken of as the “first flesh” upon the earth, meaning he was the first mortal on the earth, all things being created in a nonmortal condition, and becoming mortal through the fall of Adam. Jesus is the “Only Begotten of the Father” in the flesh, meaning he is the only one begotten of the Father into mortality (Moses 3: 7 ).

Bible Dictionary: Fall of Adam– The process by which mankind became mortal on this earth. The event is recorded in Genesis 2, 3, 4 ; and Moses 3, 4 . The fall of Adam is one of the most important occurrences in the history of man. Before the fall, Adam and Eve had physical bodies but no blood. There was no sin, no death, and no children among any of the earthly creations. With the eating of the “forbidden fruit,” Adam and Eve became mortal, sin entered, blood formed in their bodies, and death became a part of life. Adam became the “first flesh” upon the earth (Moses 3: 7), meaning that he and Eve were the first to become mortal. After Adam fell, the whole creation fell and became mortal. Adam’s fall brought both physical and spiritual death into the world upon all mankind (Helaman 14: 16–17 ).

Latter-day revelation supports the biblical account of the fall, showing that it was a historical event that literally occurred in the history of man. Many points in latter-day revelation are also clarified that are not discernible from the Bible. Among other things it makes clear that the fall is a blessing, and that Adam and Eve should be honored in their station as the first parents of the earth. Significant references are 2 Nephi 2: 15–16 ; 2 Nephi 9: 6–21 ; Mosiah 3: 11–16 ; Alma 22: 12–14 ; Alma 42: 2–15 ; D&C 29: 34–44 ; Moses 5: 9–13 .

2 Nephi 2:22, 23, 25
“Behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end. And they would have had no children; . . . . Adam fell that men might be.”

Moses 3:16–17
“And I, the Lord God, commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat, But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it, nevertheless, thou mayest choose for thyself, for it is given unto thee; but, remember that I forbid it, for in the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

Moses 6:59
“That by reason of transgression cometh the fall, which fall bringeth death, and inasmuch 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; that ye might be sanctified from all sin, and enjoy the words of eternal life in this world, and eternal life in the world to come, even immortal glory.”

Abraham 5:12–13
“And the Gods commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat, But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it; for in the time that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die. Now I, Abraham, saw that it was after the Lord’s time, which was after the time of Kolob; for as yet the Gods had not appointed unto Adam his reckoning.”

Moses 6:48, 59
“And he said unto them: Because that Adam fell, we are; and by his fall came death; . . . and we are made partakers of misery and woe. That by reason of transgression cometh the fall, which fall bringeth death. . .”

Aritcle of Faith 2
“We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression.”

Mosiah 3:16, 19
“And even if it were possible that little children could sin they could not be saved; but I say unto you they are blessed; for behold, as in Adam, or by nature, they fall, even so the blood of Christ atoneth for their sins. . . . For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.”

D&C 29:40,42
“Wherefore, it came to pass that the devil tempted Adam, and he partook of the forbidden fruit and transgressed the commandment, wherein he became subject to the will of the devil, because he yielded unto temptation. But, behold, I say unto you that I, the Lord God, gave unto Adam and unto his seed, that they should not die as to the temporal death, until I, the Lord God, should send forth angels to declare unto them repentance and redemption, through faith on the name of mine Only Begotten Son.”

1 Corinthians 15:22
“For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.”

Moses 5:11
“Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient.”

Moses 3:7
“And I, the Lord God, formed man . . . the first flesh upon the earth, the first man also . . .”

Matthew 23: 35
“That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.”

Abraham 1:3
“. . . the firstborn, or the first man, who is Adam . . .”

Supporting Statements

Bruce R. McConkie

In Eden we will see all things created in a paradisiacal state ‑ without death, without procreation, without probationary experiences. We will come to know that such a creation, now unknown to man, was the only way to provide for the Fall. We will then see Adam and Eve, the first man and the first woman, step down from their state of immortal and paradisaical glory to become the first mortal flesh on earth.

Mortality, including as it does procreation and death, will enter the world. And because of transgression a probationary estate of trial and testing will begin. Then in Gethsemane we will see the Son of God ransom man from the temporal and spiritual death that came to us because of the Fall.. And finally, before an empty tomb, we will come to know that Christ our Lord has burst the bands of death and stands forever triumphant over the grave.

Thus, Creation is father to the Fall; and by the Fall came mortality and death; and by Christ came immortality and eternal life. If there had been no fall of Adam, by which cometh death, there could have been no atonement of Christ, by which cometh life. 1

“Obviously, the whole doctrine of the fall, and all that pertains to it, is diametrically opposed to the evolutionary assumptions relative to the origin of species.” [89]

“In Eden we will see all things created in a paradisiacal state and without death, without procreation, without probationary experiences. We will come to know that such a creation, now unknown to man, was the only way to provide for the Fall. We will then see Adam and Eve, the first man and the first woman, step down from their state of immortal and paradisiacal glory to become the first mortal flesh on earth. Mortality, including as it does procreation and death, will enter the world. And because of transgression, a probationary estate of trial and testing will begin.” [90]

In Eden we will see all things created in a paradisiacal state ‑ without death, without procreation, without probationary experiences.

We will come to know that such a creation, now unknown to man, was the only way to provide for the Fall.

We will then see Adam and Eve, the first man and the first woman, step down from their state of immortal and paradisiacal glory to become the first mortal flesh on earth.

Mortality, including as it does procreation and death, will enter the world.  And because of transgression a probationary estate of trial and testing will begin.

Then in Gethsemane we will see the Son of God ransom man from the temporal and spiritual death that came to us because of the Fall..

And finally, before an empty tomb, we will come to know that Christ our Lord has burst the bands of death and stands forever triumphant over the grave.

Thus, Creation is father to the Fall; and by the Fall came mortality and death; and by Christ came immortality and eternal life.

If there had been no fall of Adam, by which cometh death, there could have been no atonement of Christ, by which cometh life.” 2

Russel M. Nelson

“Adam and Eve were first created with bodies of flesh and spirit, without blood, and were unable to die or beget children. Thus, we might describe this as a paradisaical creation.” [91]

 


  1.  1 Corinthians 15:22 .
  2.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, p. 15
  3.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 44
  4.  Spencer W. Kimball, “Absolute Truth”, Ensign, September 1978, p. 3
  5.  Alma 18:36 , Alma 22:12–14
  6.  Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988], 28 – 29
  7.  Harold B. Lee, Stand Ye In Holy Places, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1975. p. 73
  8.  Moses 1:34
  9.  D&C 107:54–56 .
  10.  D&C 107:55
  11.  Moses 4:26
  12.  Gospel Principles Manual, 2009, pp. 27
  13.  Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 167
  14.  President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 9: 304
  15.  President Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 19: 47 – 48
  16.  Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 9: 103
  17.  Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 1:235
  18.  Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 8: 127 – 128
  19.  Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 10:312
  20.  John Taylor, The Government of God.” [Liverpool: S. W. Richards, 1852], 105.
  21.  Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 23: 126
  22.  Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Wilford Woodruff, 2000, p. 20
  23.  Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 12: 280
  24.  President Joseph F. Smith, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 23: 171
  25.  Joseph F. Smith, The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 15: 324 – 325
  26.  Joseph F. Smith, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 25: 53 – 54
  27.  Joseph F. Smith, Editor’s Table., Improvement Era, 1908, Vol. Xi. March, 1908. No. 5
  28.  Joseph F. Smith, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 19: 264
  29.  Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine, 202
  30.  Joseph F. Smith., Conference Report, April 1912, Afternoon Session. 135 – 136
  31.  Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine: Selections from the Sermons and Writings of Joseph F. Smith, compiled by John A. Widtsoe [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1939], 468
  32.  Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine: Selections from the Sermons and Writings of Joseph F. Smith, compiled by John A. Widtsoe [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1939], 202
  33.  Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine: Selections from the Sermons and Writings of Joseph F. Smith, compiled by John A. Widtsoe [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1939], 16
  34.  Joseph F. Smith, 26 vols. [London: Latter-day Saints’ Book Depot, 1854-1886], 23: 171
  35.  Review Committee to President Grant, in The Truth, The Way, The Life, 2nd edition, Provo: BYU Studies, 1996, pp.292-293. George Albert Smith was chairman of the committee, and David O. McKay, Joseph Fielding Smith, Stephen L. Richards, and Melvin J. Ballard were committee members.
  36.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, Volume 1, p. 108.
  37.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:315.
  38.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Man, His Origin and Destiny [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1954], 132 – 133.
  39.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:143.
  40.  Melchizedek Priesthood, Joseph Fielding Smith, Improvement Era, 1937, Vol. Xl. May, 1937. No. 5
  41.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 3 vols., edited by Bruce R. McConkie [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1954-1956], 1: 116.
  42.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:315.
  43.  2 Nephi 2:22–25
  44.  Moses 5:11 .
  45.  Your Question by Joseph Fielding Smith, Improvement Era, 1954, Vol. Lvii. August, 1954. No. 8.
  46.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Conference Report, October 1934, Second Day—Morning Meeting 64
  47.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Conference Report, April 1967, Afternoon Meeting 122
  48.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:119-120.
  49.  Genesis 2:16, 17.
  50.  Genesis 3:19 .
  51.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Conference Report, April 1956, Afternoon Meeting 125
  52.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Seek Ye Earnestly [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1970], 281.
  53.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Faith and Works: The Clearing of a Seeming Conflict, Improvement Era, 1924, Vol. Xxvii. October, 1924. No. 12
  54.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Man, His Origin and Destiny [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1954], 279 – 280
  55.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Man, His Origin and Destiny [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1954], 160 – 161.
  56.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:142
  57.  2 Nephi 2:22–26 .
  58.  Moses 5:11
  59.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Man: His Origin and Destiny, p. 395
  60.  Joseph Fielding Smith, Man: His Origin and Destiny, pp. 362-365; Doctrines of Salvation, vol. 1, pp. 76-77
  61.  Harold B. Lee, Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Harold B. Lee, 2000, p. 20
  62.  9/14/67
  63.  A Voice of Warning [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1978], pp. 83, 84
  64.  Moses 3:7 .
  65.  Harold B. Lee, “First Presidency Message: Find the Answers in the Scriptures,” Ensign, Dec. 1972, 2.
  66.  Harold B. Lee, Stand Ye In Holy Places, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1975. p. 73
  67.  1 Corinthians 15:22 .
  68.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 15.
  69.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 44.
  70.  Spencer W. Kimball, “Absolute Truth”, Ensign, September 1978, p. 3
  71.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 68.
  72.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 25
  73.  78-06
  74.  Spencer W. Kimball, The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, edited by Edward L. Kimball [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1982], 16.
  75.  Alma 34:9
  76.  Alma 22:12–14 .
  77.  Mormon 9:12 .
  78.  Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988], 28
  79.  D&C 20:17–36 .
  80.  Alma 18:22–39
  81.  Alma 26:3
  82.  Alma 23:6 .
  83.  Ezra Taft Benson, A Witness and a Warning: A Modern-Day Prophet Testifies of the Book of Mormon [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1988], 11
  84.  Ezra Taft Benson, So Shall Ye Reap, p. 117-118
  85.  Ezra Taft Benson, The Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988], 30.
  86.  Matthew 24:36–39 .
  87.  John 11:25 .
  88.  Howard W. Hunter, That We Might Have Joy, p. 23.
  89.  Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 2d ed. [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1966], 250
  90.  Bruce R. McConkie, A New Witness for the Articles of Faith [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1985], xv
  91.  Russell M. Nelson, “Standards of the Lord’s Standard-Bearers,” Ensign, Aug. 1991, 5

References:

  1. Elder Bruce R. McConkie, April 1985 General Conference. 
  2. Elder Bruce R. McConkie, April 1985 General Conference. 

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James F. Stoddard III and L. Hannah Stoddard contributed to this article originally published http://josephsmithfoundation.org/
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28 Responses to Did Dinosaurs Die Before the Fall of Adam?

  1. Walter Buller says:

    Thanks for a thoroughly researched article. However it apparently has two major flaws. First, all of the people you quoted rely on the words in a book, a dumb, inanimate object unable to think, reason, or interfere with its own contents; albeit a sacred book, but a book nonetheless. While on the other hand, there are now well over a million accounts coming in from all over the world from people who have died for awhile, a few minutes to a few days, but came back to life, having what is known as an NDE, (near death experience), a few of whom were LDS. In their conversations with Jesus and others on the other side, they learned that this earth is in fact billions of years old, and that man has been here for hundreds of thousands of years. Second, all of the DNA

    • Walter Buller says:

      experts, including LDS ones, who analyzed the DNA from over 10,000 native Americans and Polynesians, all concluded that 99.6% of native Americans and Polynesians came from East Asia around Siberia at least 60,000 years ago, possibly as many as 200,000 years ago. So, if Adam and Eve only came on the scene about 6000 years ago, who are the parents of all these other multi-millions of people?

  2. JRX says:

    A Facebook friend of mine posted the following and linked to this blog. I want you all to know that his words are 100% false:

    “I would encourage all of my LDS friends to read this outstanding article on the LDS Church stand on evolution, a theory which has never been proven and has no real scientific basis and which has been condemned by LDS Church leaders in no uncertain terms as false.”

    Brothers and Sisters, in condemning and denying scientific truth, such as the theory of evolution, we turn people away from the Church. Let’s embrace truth in all of its forms, regardless of the source. Truth is truth. The Gospel and science go hand in hand; let’s not treat them as mutually exclusive of one another.

    • Walter Buller says:

      But Ezra, suppose light beings, i.e., eternal spirits, decided that it would benefit them to have a mortal experience. All they needed was a physical body to inhabit for that purpose. This is in fact exactly what happened, as we are taught. And suppose they found that with a little adjustment to their DNA, humans, who were already here, could serve adequately as hosts. These light beings could enter shortly after conception, then leave at the moment the human died. This is in fact what happened, according to the testimonies of thousands of NDE’ers who learned this while in the presence of those on the other side while they were technically dead. After all, at the beginning of every endowment session, we are told that the following is only symbolic.

  3. Bill Wines says:

    It’s clear (to me, anyway) that revelation and science are not reconcilable when it comes to biology. There is a conflict. They can both be wrong, but they both can’t be right. The solution I have chosen is to ignore the “worldview” given us by modern scientific research. Not to deny it, just to ignore it. I don’t care if it’s true. It very likely is. But I don’t find it edifying, hopeful, inspiring, or uplifting. So I have no use for it. Most will likely find this a curious attitude to adopt, but is there a better option?

    • Ammon says:

      Yes there is a better option – to search for truth ad to find peace in the bewildering complexity and beauty of the world. To try to do good because we are all people instead of doing good because we fear some imaginary God. ‘The truth will set you free’.

      • Mitch van Biljon says:

        Is that not what makes life so exciting? Finding truth is an awesome experience and whilst we will never find all truth here on earth, the quest is so enjoyable.

  4. Chester Manderfield says:

    If this is so conclusive, why does BYU abide by the “BYU Packet” on evolution? Incorrect assumptions are held even by prophets and apostles. Assumptions about the age of the earth, death outside the Garden of Eden, populations in the western hemisphere throughout time, etc. We do use assumptions and also faith and also science (reasoned work and thought) to fill in the blanks. Read the statements from the First Presidency assembled in the BYU Packet. If you hold on to bad assumptions too long you can miss out on mindblowing scientific findings that will expand your vision of just how powerful and brilliant God and his creation is, and by connection, how great and significant you and your contribution to the kingdom today can be. Search, ponder, pray: forever.

    • Chester Manderfield says:

      The packet is about a page long. Read it. Outside of these official statements, other modern sources are a gradation of interpretations on scripture. So many of the scriptural sources above are not clear cut.

      The new gospel topics essays on LDS.org are another reminder that we need to check our assumptions on things that seem so clear cut.

  5. Pingback: Mormon Chronicle articles | Joseph Smith Foundation

  6. Mark Pinnell says:

    I’m a bit disappointed. I have grown up with the gospel (most of the time) and I loved the information provided here but it fails to address the eye catching headline – “Did dinosaurs die before the fall of the Earth”. I agree with the Prophets that it is unimportant for your average Joe and we should be focused on the missions of The Church as our time is short in this life.

    One of my recent hobbies is ancient history and cosmology and dinosaurs are interesting and the possibilities are many and if you want an interesting hobby (like we all have plenty of spare time on our hands) then you should look up Mormon Prophecy where you will gain some insight into the Dinosaur question among other mysteries. =)

  7. Steve Brown says:

    And all 10 of those men are dead wrong!

  8. Terrific to see some of the many prophetic words on this topic gathered together. The three pillars of eternity are (1) creation in a paradisiacal state, (2) the fall from a paradisiacal state to a fallen state whereby physical and spiritual death entered the world, and (3) the atonement of Jesus Christ, which overcomes the effects of the fall.

    Evolution claims that 2 of the 3 pillars of eternity are pure fancy. It attacks the gospel core.

    The scriptures teach:

    2 Nephi 2: 22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.

  9. In the millennium when Christ rules, I expect our current knowledge of science will seem as primitive as the dark ages. With that infinitely more complete knowledge there will be a reconciliation between what God has said and what science concludes, and it will not be God who is apologizing. In the end, science itself will testify that God’s words were all correct.

    But until then I do not think God will reveal to the minds of men the key points that will allow them to come together. He wants our faith in the Holy Ghost to grow to the point that it is greater than what our eyes and ears tell us, according to Elder Scott.

    I think it is quite intentional that in these days, he leaves us to choose between believing His scriptures and prophets and mens scientific ideas.

    • Dave says:

      I just covered this in Seminary this morning:

      D&C 101:32-34

      32 Yea, verily I say unto you, in that day when the Lord shall come, he shall reveal all things—

      33 Things which have passed, and hidden things which no man knew, things of the earth, by which it was made, and the purpose and the end thereof—

      34 Things most precious, things that are above, and things that are beneath, things that are in the earth, and upon the earth, and in heaven.

  10. Gravy Stumbler says:

    This data set is expanding due to science, and data points that were assumed to be fixed are drifting due to new authoritative statements, reinterpretation, de-emphasis, re-emphasis, and such. Will we look beyond the mark and let it cause us to stumble like the Jews did (Jacob 4:13-15)? That caused them to reject their own messiah.

    Some long held views of the data sets may need to shift. It makes me sad that the Lord has had to wait for each generation to die to eliminate this or that too-firmly-held idea.

    Creation and death before the fall is NOT clear cut. Garden of Eden is NOT clear cut.

    We pertain to this earth, today, now. Our work is here, now. We have what we need to do our work well here and now, thank God. The rest is gravy. Stumble on that gravy?

  11. Darren Andrews says:

    Although the Church takes no official stance, I think much can be gained on the mind of the Lord through the counsel and even the opinions of inspired men. I am given to trusting them and taking the scriptures at their face value before I am given to doing the same for worldly authorities and their works.

    I have studied somewhat these theories, and I can only say that I have come across no shred of conclusive evidence for evolution; to the contrary, the evidence seems to point to a young earth or, at the very least, life being young.

    As to the title – there is a *great deal* of evidence for dinosaurs and men co-existing. This is one documentary video that gives a good overview of the evidence – Youtube link

    • Rick Richards says:

      Dude, I’m embarrassed for you due to your utterly stupendous ignorance. The link to the “evidence” of man and dinosaurs living together that you provided is laughable. Please go read a science book.

      There is no requirement for members of the church to be so oblivious of the facts of evolution. Real scientific truth is no threat to faith, what you claim to accept by the evidence you provide casts you as a child. Grow up and learn what the adults know. You give credence to the term “religitard”.

  12. Gigi's Daughter says:

    Elder Henry B. Eyring’s father (Henry Eyring) was a highly respected scientist and member of the Church. When then Elder Joseph Fielding Smith’s book, “Man–His Origin and Destiny” was being evaluated by the First Presidency, Apostle Adam Bennion asked Eyring about it. Henry Eyring replied, “Our prophets have been given to see clearly the road we should follow and can point the path to the celestial kingdom, but being human they too must walk by faith… I can understand the work of a great man (referencing Elder Smith & his book) who is fallible…. I find it much less satisfactory in scientific matters than the excellent writings of brother Talmage and Brother Widtsoe, with which it is in frequent disagreement.” Google – Steven H. Heath’s article about Eyring.

  13. Gigi's Daughter says:

    The point of Steven Health’s article: “The Reconciliatoin of Faith and Science: Henry Eyring’s Achievement,” is that we shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss science, since true religion and true science ultimately will support each other, once God’s full understanding is revealed. In the mean time we can know that God did create the world even though all processes are still not fully understood. Henry Eyring further states, “In my judgment there is room in the Church for people who think that the periods of creation were (a) 24 hours, (b) 100 years, or (c) millions of years… In matters where apparently equally reliable authorities disagree, I prefer to make haste slowly…. The Lord created the world and my faith does not hinge on the detailed procedures.”

    • Blackcayman says:

      “The Lord created the world and my faith does not hinge on the detailed procedures.”

      There it is. Thank you.

      Also, Science knows what it knows today. Tomorrow that knowledge can become obsolete when a new scientific discovery is made. What intellegent thinking LDS person would put all their trust in science today, when it oft-times becomes obsolete? I will trust in God. I will listen to the spririt. I will work to make my testimony grow. Dinosaurs and how much “time” this Earth has been here does not concern me.

  14. Mitch van Biljon says:

    I strongly urge folks to buy the book “Earth – In the Beginning” by Eric Skousen. This sets out the balance between evolution and gospel doctrine. Brilliant read.

  15. Helen says:

    There is the possibility that this earth was created from material, or another world which had fallen into decay, or was ruined. The command to not eat from the tree in the Garden of Eden was only (initially) addressed to Adam, as Eve had not been created at that point. Does this help to exonerate her from blame? … There was a spiritual creation as well as a physical creation, which I’m sure you know. We don’t know how long after the command to not eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good & evil that Eve was created. It could have been 100 years or more.. It could also have been hundreds of years that they lived in this perfect setting, waiting for change, or (Eve) hankering for children(?).

  16. bt@slamx.com says:

    …continued from previous post: If you have done the research, I would be interested in the physical changes that happen to people when, over time (hundreds of years), they live in degradation and horrible sin such as sacrificing women and children and feasting on their flesh. What changes happen when they repent and turn to both the Father who created them and the Father who begot them with His blood. I have not done the research on these thoughts, but if you have considered these things deeply, I’d love to hear them. Thank you.

  17. bt@slamx.com says:

    After teaching graduate school for years I’ve learned that research and science are slippery. Unfortunately, science often generates strong opinions evangelized through peer-reviewed publications, media, music, and curriculum with zeal of religeous fervor. Philosophies are fascinating, but they change. God says He does not change. Which makes me wonder what He looked like when He and His Son, Jesus, appeared to Joseph Smith? They had the form of men. In the pre-mortal world our “intelligences” (D&C 93) were clothed in spirit matter after the image of our Father and Mother in heaven. They are our Parents, they know what we do not know. The Plan of Salvation is glorious. I do wonder about the effects of sin. Adam’s children loved Satan more than God. Continued…

  18. Abe says:

    So what are coal and crude oil?

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