Two months ago I had a young man come into my office wanting to discuss some of the theories of science as they relate to Mormonism. As a man well versed in science and the workings of the Lord I welcomed him into my office for such a discussion. Tony admitted he was struggling with his testimony by the things he was learning at school. As you will see from our ensuing discussion I was able to guide him back to the truth and set him on the straight and narrow way. Below is more or less how our conversation went after the normal pleasantries;
PP (President Paternoster): Tony you come from a long line of faithful priesthood holders. I perceive that you are a very intelligent young man and I look forward to sending you out on a mission in a few months as you follow the example of your older brothers and sister. Tell me exactly what it is that is bothering you.
T (Tony): Well President, I have been learning about the history of the Earth and the teacher said things that would indicate that death has been on the Earth from well before the time of Adam. I was taught in seminary that it was Adams Fall that brought death into the world. Adam lived around 6,000 years ago. I’m just not sure who to believe.
PP: Tony this is an excellent question and you are absolutely right that Adams Fall brought death into the world. If you will turn with me to the Bible dictionary we can read about this:
"Latter-day revelation teaches that there was no death on this earth for any forms of life before the fall of Adam. Indeed, death entered the world as a direct result of the fall (2 Ne. 2: 22; Moses 6: 48).”
To readers of this blog below is the url to the lds.org website which has this statement: http://lds.org/scriptures/bd/death?lang=eng&letter=d
Tony from 2 Ne2:22 we learn that if Adam had not transgressed 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.
Tony please consider the following statement and clarification on the above scripture made to the students at the Lords university (BYU) by an apostle even Bruce R. McKonkie. Keep in mind Tony that many of the students present were studying sciences at the time:
"My reasoning causes me to conclude that if death has always prevailed in the world, then there was no fall of Adam that brought death to all forms of life; that if Adam did not fall, there is no need for an atonement; that if there was no atonement, there is no salvation, no resurrection, and no eternal life; and that if there was no atonement, there is nothing in all of the glorious promises that the Lord has given us."
T: Wait wait so if death occurred before Adam then there was no Fall or Atonement and Christianity is a false religion! Is that what he was saying?
PP: Tony that is exactly what he was saying. And he was a prophet, seer and revelator in every sense of the word. Are you willing to give up Christianity and the chance to serve a mission based on the theories of scientists?
T: No of course not President.
PP: Very well then. Tony I would counsel you to ponder the things we have discussed today, particularly the scriptures in the Book of Mormon and come back to report in two weeks so I can see how you feel.
T: I will do that President.
PP: Thank you Tony. Oh and Tony never feel ashamed to speak up in class if what they are teaching is incorrect. Always stand up for your beliefs.
T: Uh OK