Jesus and Lucifer, Sitting in a Tree
Here's an odd addendum to the story about Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Mormons, and the question of Jesus and Lucifer being brothers. The LDS church sent out a spokesperson to complain:
"We believe, as other Christians believe and as Paul wrote, that God is the father of all," said the spokeswoman, Kim Farah. "That means that all beings were created by God and are his spirit children. Christ, on the other hand, was the only begotten in the flesh and we worship him as the son of God and the savior of mankind. Satan is the exact opposite of who Christ is and what he stands for."
Fair enough, but as Andrew pointed out yesterday, the LDS website seems to have a different take on this:
On first hearing, the doctrine that Lucifer and our Lord, Jesus Christ, are brothers may seem surprising to some—especially to those unacquainted with latter-day revelations. But both the scriptures and the prophets affirm that Jesus Christ and Lucifer are indeed offspring of our Heavenly Father and, therefore, spirit brothers. Jesus Christ was with the Father from the beginning. Lucifer, too, was an angel “who was in authority in the presence of God,” a “son of the morning.” (See Isa. 14:12; D&C 76:25–27.) Both Jesus and Lucifer were strong leaders with great knowledge and influence. But as the Firstborn of the Father, Jesus was Lucifer’s older brother. (See Col. 1:15; D&C 93:21.)
That's from a 1986 Q&A with Jess L. Christensen, the Institute of Religion director at Utah State University, Logan, Utah. He clearly seems to think Mormons have some distinctive doctrine on this point. Kim Farah, while not quite contradicting anything in the latter excerpt, is clearly trying to give the reverse impression that -- that Mormons just believe what "other Christians believe." From where I sit, this particular doctrine doesn't sound especially odd (two brothers: one good, one evil, destined to eternal struggle for the souls of men -- what's wrong with that?) so I don't really know why the church would be weird about it.