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Opinions about creation

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Since I like to be honest and fair I will report here the opinions of the LDS people and the evangelicals.

Ehat & Cook, Words, Before 8 August 1839 (1) Note, p.22
4.& D&C 93:29, 30, 33 (29-35). Whether one believes that the spirit of man is a special act of creation at the time of birth (as in Catholic theology) or that man's spirit had a premortal existence beginning at the time of the Creation (as in some Protestant theology), the creation of the spirit of men is viewed as essentially a creation ex nihilo—out of nothing. Joseph Smith rejected the ex nihilo concept very early (D&C 93:29, 30, 33 (29-35); a 6 May 1833 revelation); nevertheless, this discourse contains his first public reference to the concept, which received its closest attention in the celebrated King Follett sermon (7 April 1844). Here the Prophet extends his discussion of ex nihilo creation to the self-existence of all matter. According to Joseph Smith, God did not utterly transcend existence by creating from nothing time, space, and matter; rather, these things always existed: He is composed of matter, occupies space, and lives in an eternity of time

Neal A. Maxwell, But for a Small Moment, p.89
How earnestly the adversary has striven to keep the doctrines of the premortal existence of man and the reality of the resurrection from coming generally within man's circle of awareness, let alone conviction! When people are thus deprived, this creates a one-dimensional man. If created ex nihilo, man did not really exist before; this false doctrine, Joseph said at the 1844 Follett funeral, "lessens man" (Words, p. 359).

Neal A. Maxwell, But for a Small Moment, p.90
The coming forth (through "a choice seer") of the "other books" of scripture, however, makes possible the confounding of the false doctrine of ex nihilo man—man created from nothing. More than anyone else in modern times, the "choice seer" did battle with this heresy that became orthodoxy, using the reality of our premortality as his sword. More than we as Church members yet appreciate, this precious truth frees us from the dichotomy of the Creator-creature and from the awful challenge of explaining evil in a mankind created ex nihilo! With the truth about our identity comes clarity as to our accountability.
Neal A. Maxwell, But for a Small Moment, p.102
With regard to our individual traits and personalities, obviously genes and environment play a large part. But more important than we now know is the luggage we bring with us from the premortal world. In any case, having been rescued from the false doctrine of ex nihilo creation of man, we should be very careful about imputing to God any spiritual deficiencies we may have—especially since it is under his tutelage that we are to overcome these.
Neal A. Maxwell, Meek and Lowly, p.42
How blessed we are, for instance, to understand that "man was also in the beginning with God." (D&C 93:29.) We are the spirit children of God, who created us, yet we had in some essential respect—said Joseph Smith in the King Follet sermon—"no beginning" and are "eternal." (See also D&C 93:29; Abraham 3:18.) As carriers of immortal genes, we are not left to believe in an ex nihilo creation with its painful dilemmas and dichotomies.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.1, CREATION, CREATION ACCOUNTS
The doctrine of ex nihilo creation has been the traditional Christian explanation. In recent discussion of the subject, many Jewish scholars agreed that the belief in an ex nihilo creation is not to be found before the Hellenistic period, while Christian scholars see no evidence of this doctrine in the Christian church until the end of the second century A.D. The rejection of ex nihilo creation in the teaching of the Latter-day Saints thus accords with the evidence of the earliest understanding of the Creation in ancient Israel and in early Christianity. Similarly, Latter-day Saints have understood such biblical passages as John 9:2 and Jeremiah 1:4-5 to refer to individual premortal existence, with implications for subsequent earthly existence. In support of this, it may be pointed out that various Christians and Christian groups in the early Christian centuries taught the same doctrine (cf. Origen, De principiis 1:7; 2:8; 4:1), and that it is also to be found in Jewish belief of the same period, including Philo (De mutatione nominum 39; De opificio mundi 51; De cherubim 32); in some apocryphal writings (Wisdom of Solomon 8:19-20; 15:3); and among the Essenes (Josephus, Jewish War 2.8.11, as well as in the Jewish Talmud and Midrash).
Anderson, Bernhard W. "Creation." In Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible, Vol. 1, pp. 725-32. New York, 1962.
Eliade, Mircea. "The Prestige of the Cosmogonic Myth." Diogenes 23 (Fall 1958):1-13.
Goldstein, Jonathan A. "The Origins of the Doctrine of Creation Ex Nihilo." Journal of Jewish Studies 35 (Autumn

1984):127-35.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.1, DOCTRINE
Moreover, Latter-day Saints understand "in the beginning" to mean "in the beginning of our part of the story," or in the premortal state "when God began to create our world." They do not believe in an absolute beginning, for in LDS theology spirit, matter, and element are all eternal. Creations may progress from lower to higher orders, and it is God's work and glory to bring this development about (Moses 1:39), but there never was a time when matter did not exist. Latter-day Saints reject the common idea of an ex nihilo creation—that God made everything that exists out of nonexistence. They teach instead that God created everything out of pre-existing but unorganized materials. He organized pre-existing elements to create worlds, and he organized pre-existing intelligence to beget spirits. The spirits of all human beings existed as God's spirit children before their mortal birth on earth.
Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.1, DOCTRINE
Since Mormons believe that the elements are eternal, it follows that they deny the ex nihilo creation. Rather, the universe was created (organized) out of preexisting elements that God organized by imposing physical laws.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.2, EVIL
Nonbelievers and believers alike often question why God would allow evil of any kind to exist. The question becomes especially acute within an Augustinian worldview that affirms God to be the ex nihilo or absolute creator of whatever exists other than himself. On that premise it appears that God is the ultimate source or cause of all evil, or, at least, a knowing accessory before the fact, and thus omniresponsible for all evils that occur.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol.3, PHILOSOPHY
Latter-day scriptures do not present a philosophical system, but they do contain answers to many classic philosophical issues. These scriptures preclude ex nihilo creation, idealism (immaterialism), a chance theory of causation, and absolute determinism.

In 1951, the Pope officially declared for the Big Bang theory, because it looked to some like a creation ex nihilo. Actually, it is just the opposite: the Big Bang took place precisely because all that the universe contains was already compressed within that primal singularity so tightly that it had to explode. It was all there, always.

These are extracts from LDS works

instead from now on we will have extracts from the book "New Mormon challenge" page 96

"the first verse of the Bible begins by declaring one of the most fundamental things we can know about God and the world we live : God created the heaven and earth." This affirmation has been proclaimed by Christian in all centuries and has ALMOST always been understood to mean that God created all thing out of nothing (ex nihilo). That is God did not work with uncreated, preexisting materials but created literally everything by divine fiat."

Stanley L. Jaki, a Catholic priest of the Benedictine Order, stated:

The caution which is in order about taking the [Hebrew] verb bara in the sense of creation out of nothing is no less needed in reference to the [English] word creation. Nothing is more natural, and unadvised, at the same time, than to use the word as if it has always denoted creation out of nothing. In its basic etymological origin the word creation meant the purely natural process of growing or of making something to grow. This should be obvious by a mere recall of the [Latin] verb crescere. The crescent moon [derived from crescere] is not creating but merely growing. The expression ex nihilo or de nihilo had to be fastened, from around 200 A.D. on, by Christian theologians on the verb creare to convey unmistakably a process, strict creation, which only God can perform. Only through the long-standing use of those very Latin expressions, creare ex nihilo and creatio ex nihilo, could the English words to create and creation take on the meaning which excludes pre-existing matter.

the Anchor Bible series. Speiser translates Genesis 1:1-3 as follows:

When God set about to create heaven and earth - the world being a formless waste, with darkness over the seas...- God said, "Let there be light." And there was light.

This translation is significant, for it means that chaos preexisted God's creative activity. The earth was in a state of chaos and without form when God began to create. As Speiser says: "To be sure the present interpretation precludes the view that creation accounts in Genesis say nothing about coexistent matter."

Speiser comments:

The first word of Genesis, and hence the first word in the Hebrew Bible as a unit, is vocalized as beresit. Grammatically, this is evidently in the construct state.... Thus, the sense of this particular initial term is, or should be, "At the beginning of...," or "When," and not "In/At the beginning"; the absolute form with adverbial connotation would be bare'sit. As the text is now vocalized, therefore, the Hebrew Bible starts out with a dependent clause

Genesis 1:1-3 should be so translated was recognized long ago by the well-known Jewish scholar, Rashi. He proposed that Genesis 1:1 constituted a dependent clause. He considered Genesis 1:1 the protasis: "When God began to create," or "In the beginning of God's creation;" verse 2 as a parenthesis: "The earth being/was void...;" and verse 3 as an apodosis: "God said, let there be light." Rashi argued:

At the beginning of Creation of heaven and earth, when the earth was desolate and void and there was darkness, then God said, "let there be light." This verse does not appear in order to show the order of Creation and tell us that the heaven and earth were created first. Because whenever the word beresit appears in Scripture, it is in the construct, so here too, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth" should be translated as "In the beginning of God's creating the heaven and the earth."

Luis Stadelmann explained in his  work The Hebrew Conception of the World:

It has long been recognized by Bible scholars that the Priestly account of creation of the world [in Genesis 1] reveals traces of Mesopotamian influence. This influence is most apparent in the cosmological presuppositions, and in this sense the Priestly account differs significantly in outlook from that of the Yahwist [in Genesis 2]. For example, where as the Yahwist record envisages the primeval state as a desert needing water to make it fertile, the Priestly presupposes the existence of an unformed chaos enveloped in primeval darkness.... The world is pictured as "being then a formless waste, with darkness over the seas," in short a watery caos (sic). The passage concerned seems to indicate a situation in which the world is envisaged as immersed in the thwm, the 'seas.' As further development of the idea shows, the chief features of the primeval chaos were those of the raw material of the universe.

Umberto Cassuto described the situation of the primeval chaos before creation as follows: "In this chaos of unformed matter, the heaviest materials were naturally at the bottom, and the waters, which were the lightest, floated on top. This apart, the whole material was an undifferentiated, unorganized, confused and lifeless agglomeration. It is this terrestrial state that is called thw wbhw [a formless waste]."I would add that there can be little doubt that the Hebrew word thw (tohu) when used alone with wbhw means primarily a desert or wasteland.

and I could go on an on quoting pro and against.

let's go to   Creation ex nihilo or not? and instead to become crazy just read the main and simple passages in which the creation was done and leaving aside my comments you can judge for yourself with just common sense.

Last Updated on Monday, 17 May 2010 09:45  

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