Adam and Eve were created from the dust, the scriptures tell us. We haven’t escaped that lowly origin. Dust is where we come from, dust is who we are, and dust is where we are headed.

That is the Old Testament view. In the Book of Mormon and the Pearl of Great Price there is a less optimistic view. We are less than dust. In comparison with the goodness and glory and the works of God, we are nothing.

Ye cannot say that ye are even as much as the dust of the earth.

Mosiah 2:25

We are less than dust because, being no better than dust, we still presume to disobey. Dust never would.

how great is the nothingness of the children of men; yea, even they are bless than the dust of the earth.
For behold, the dust of the earth moveth hither and thither, to the dividing asunder, at the command of our great and everlasting God.

Helaman 12:7-8

Man is nothing:

And it came to pass that Moses looked, and beheld the world upon which he was created; and Moses beheld the world and the ends thereof, and all the children of men which are, and which were created; of the same he greatly marveled and wondered.

And the presence of God withdrew from Moses, that his glory was not upon Moses; and Moses was left unto himself. And as he was left unto himself, he fell unto the earth.

And it came to pass that it was for the space of many hours before Moses did again receive his natural strength like unto man; and he said unto himself: Now, for this cause I know that man is nothing, which thing I never had supposed.

-Thus Moses.

When I was growing up, emotionally and aesthetically the doctrine of deification put me off. Every public high school is just a little bit like the Lord of the Flies. En masse teenagers are animals. And I had the painful blessing of being self-aware, even then, and realizing that I was one of them. Making us Gods was gross.

I struggled with the doctrine for a long time. I gnawed at it. But somewhere along the way the Spirit took me to task. Not by correcting my views, but by turning them on their head. I was made to realize that the vast gulf separating us from God exist because God is incomprehensibly great. So great that He could bridge the gulf. I saw that it would be a slur on His power and glory to say he couldn’t make peers and equals out of us. He can and will.

Their sleeping dust was to be restored unto its perfect frame, bone to his bone, and the sinews and the flesh upon them, the spirit and the body to be united never again to be divided, that they might receive a fulness of joy.

No other project was worthy of his greatness.

Who was I, dust that I am, to disapprove of his purposes?

I am unworthy of his love, yes. But I am unworthy because his love is so great, so great that it overcomes my unworthiness.

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