J.W. Wartick: a philosophical challenge to Mormonism

It’s here on his blog “Always Have a Reason”. He critiques two concepts of God in Mormonism: Monarchotheism and Polytheism. I think most of you will already know about the infinite regress critique of Mormon polytheism, so let’s take a look at this Monarchotheism.


Stephen Parrish and Carl Mosser take Mormon teaching to expound the concept of God known as Monarchotheism, “the theory that there is more than one God, but one God is clearly preeminent among the gods; in effect, he is the monarch or ruler of all the gods” (Parrish and Mosser, 195, cited below). This concept of God is embodied (see Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith cited in P+M, 201). Furthermore, this God is contingent, the organizer of a world that was originally chaos, and one of many gods (Ibid, 201). Furthermore, Joseph Smith himself taught that this “God himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man…” (TPJS 345, cited in P+M, 202).

[…]There are many difficulties with this Mormon concept of God. Perhaps most crucial is the inclusion of contingency in the concept of God. If God is contingent, then it does indeed beg the question “Who Made God?” Consider this against classical theism, which holds that God exists necessarily. Classical theists can respond to this question by simply saying, “No one made God, because God, as necessarily existent, never came into being.” Yet Mormons who hold God is contingent must answer this question.

That’s not the only difficulty with God as contingent either, for holding that God is contingent removes several of the reasons to believe that such a deity exists. Consider one of the classical arguments for the existence of God: that contingent things have all come into being, so there must be something which has always existed in order to terminate the infinite regress. Of course, if this deity which terminates the regress is, itself, contingent, then one must continue the regress to the next step. Thus, this Mormon concept of God provides no grounding for the universe itself.

He has a couple more critiques to this position as well. But relevant to the contingency problem is the evidence from modern physics. If the Mormon God does not exist eternally, then it could not be the cause of the universe. Therefore, the universe could not have come into being on Mormon theology. Mormon theology requires an eternal universe, putting it at odds with Christian theology, as well as the Big Bang cosmology.

You can read my article on Mormonism right here. I attack Mormonism on scientific and historical grounds. First, the conflict with modern cosmology. Second, the Book of Abraham is a fraud – it’s an Egyptian burial narrative.

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