Alvin K. Benson, “Joseph Smith on Modern Science,” in Joseph Smith: The Prophet, The Man, ed. Susan Easton Black and Charles D. Tate Jr. (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 1993), 151–167.
Alvin K. Benson was a professor of Geophysics and Geology at Brigham Young University when this was published.
The Lord instructed Joseph Smith and each one of us to seek both spiritual and secular knowledge, to learn of “all things that pertain to the kingdom of God, that are expedient for us to understand; of things both in heaven and in earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass” (D&C 88: 78–79). Therefore, we should not be hesitant to pursue knowledge, in all the fields of endeavor, including fields of scientific inquiry. Joseph Smith was a strong advocate for inquiring knowledge, and an excellent example of doing it. In his teachings, the Prophet stated, “A man is saved no faster than he gets knowledge” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith 217: hereafter TPJS), and “The principle of knowledge is the principle of salvation “(297). As Joseph well understood, we too must realize that all knowledge is not of equal value and “to be learned is good if [we] hearken unto the counsels of God” (2 Nephi 9:29).
The most direct way to discover truth in any area is by revelation from God (see 2 Nephi 32:5; Moses 6:61; D&C 121:26–29). Speaking to this point, Joseph Smith said,
We consider that God has created man with a mind capable of instruction, and a faculty which may be enlarged in proportion to the heed and diligence given to the light communicated from heaven to the intellect; and that the nearer man approaches perfection, the clearer are his views, and the greater his enjoyments. (TPJS 51).
Learning from God, the source of all truth, is essential. Indeed, as Brigham Young taught, “God has revealed all the truth that is now in the possession of the world, whether it be scientific, or religious” (Journal of Discourses 8:162: hereafter JD), and on another occasion, he said, “God is the author of the sciences” (18:359). Although Joseph Smith’s calling was of a spiritual nature, God taught that the Prophet both religious and scientific principles. Some of the “modern” scientific principles revealed to Joseph will be addressed in this paper, spanning from the law of health, applicable in our everyday world, to the space-time, energy-matter relationships in the relativistic world, to the quantum conditions of the microscopic world.
Since God designed and created the human body, it is logical to suppose that he understands the foods and nutrients required to maintain the body in optimal condition. Thus, for our dispensation, the Lord revealed his law regarding health and diet to Joseph Smith in section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, the Word of Wisdom. It’s exciting to see how continuing scientific discoveries verify the wisdom and insight revealed to the Prophet in the Word of Wisdom in 1833, a revelation containing knowledge about health and nutrition far in advance of anything yet suggested by scientists.
Typically, the attention is placed on the restrictions in the Word of Wisdom, but focus should be placed on the positive points of the law. One general area for positive action deals with herbs:
And again, verily I say unto you, all wholesome herbs God hath ordained for the constitution, nature, and use of man—Every herb in the season thereof, and every fruit in the season thereof; all these to be used with prudence and thanksgiving. (D&C 89:10–11)
In a very general sense, herbs are simply edible plants which produce seeds and die “back on the ground each year: and a fruit is the edible reproductive body of the seed plant. There are few vegetables and fruits that don’t fit these categories” (Graves and Rogers 12). These foods provide vitamin C, vitamin A, iron, Calcium, trace minerals, and small amounts of other vitamins, and the Lord instructs us to use them “in the season thereof,” when they are at their peak nutritionally.
The value of vitamins, minerals, and fiber found in fruits and vegetables for helping to maintain good health is strongly supported by medical evidence. “They are essential in protecting the body from diseases as diverse as hypertension, diverticulitis, viral infections, and even some forms of cancer” (Graces and Rogers 12). The daily diet should provide four or more servings of vegetables and fruits (Swanson 110–23, 622–36).
In addition to their nutritional value, the Lord emphasizes that fruits and vegetables are to be used with good judgment and thanksgiving. In Doctrine and Covenants 59, Joseph Smith recorded,
Yea, all things which come out of the earth, in the season thereof, are made for the benefit and the use of man, both to please the eye and to gladden the heart; Yea, for food and raiment, for taste and for smell, to strengthen the body and to enliven the soul. And it pleaseth God that he hath given all these things unto man; for unto this end were they made to be used with judgment, not to excess. (vv 18–20)
From the Lord’s view, while eating is a necessity, it is also an occasion for joy, thanksgiving, and prudence.
It is with the same attitude that we should use the “flesh also of beasts and the fowls of the air” that were “ordained for the use of man with thanksgiving” (D&C 89:12). Meat contains good quality protein and iron, as well as several vitamins and in the vitamin B group, such as thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, and pyridoxine (Swanson 119). Nevertheless, “they are to be used sparingly” (D&C 89:12), which seems to be confirmed through the years of observation and research (Sandstead 3). Meats (particularly red meats) contain saturated fats and cholesterol which are risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease, and too much meat in the diet may also be linked to colon cancer and diverticular disease (see Church and Church 22, 24, 30, 34, 51, 55, 123, 186; Swanson 635–36; Updike 21–37, 60–74). The National Research Council Committee on Dietary Allowances estimates that an individual needs 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight daily (Recommended 46). In addition to meat, other products which will help provide the necessary protein intake are beans, nuts, cereal products, cheese, and milk.
In Doctrine and Covenants 89:13, the Prophet was also told that meats should be used “only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine.” Perhaps this is because meats are so high in fat, and since fat contains more than twice the calories of an equivalent amount of either protein or carbohydrate, it may be of greatest value to the human body when needed to help stay warm, or for the extra calories in times of hunger (Swanson 112). Additional research is being done.
A third general area of positive recommendations deals with grains:
All grain is ordained for the use of man and of beasts, to be the staff of life, not only for man but for the beasts of the field, and the fowls of the heaven, and all the wild animals that run or creep on the earth; And these hath God made for the use of man only in times of famine and excess hunger. All grain is good for the food of man; as also the fruit of the vine; that which yielded fruit, whether in the ground or above the ground—Nevertheless, wheat for the man, and corn for the ox, and oats for the horse, and rye for the fowls and for swine, and for all beasts of the field, and barley for all useful animals, and for mild drinks, as also other grain. (D&C 89:14–17)
Throughout the history of mankind, grain has been “the staff of life,” and the diverse species can be grown from within the Arctic Circle to the equator, ranging over all types of climates. Because the Lord has provided grains for the majority of populations may be one reason why he points out twice in these verses that "all grain” is for man’s use. In addition, the complex carbohydrates (starches) in grains are probably the body’s best and least expensive fuels (Swanson 110–11).
Whole grains contain fiber which helps the gastrointestinal tract function normally, and some research indicates that fiber reduces the amount of cholesterol absorbed from food, is beneficial in treating constipation and diverticulitis, and reduces the risk of certain types of cancer and various other diseases, ranging from hemorrhoids, to appendicitis (Rosenfeld 132, 211–12). The complex carbohydrates may also “reduce the risk of heart disease, be useful in the treatment of diabetes, and even aid in weight control by replacing fat and sugar in the diet” (Graves and Rogers 13). However, since grain has less protein which is also of lower quality than that in meat, eggs, milk, cheese, peas, and beans, it should be consumed with other high-quality protein foods. This may be part of the reason for the Lord returning to the point of eating “the fruit of the vine,” wholesome herbs, and fruits (D&C 89:16). Apparently, a good variety in our diets is important and is the Lord’s counsel to the Prophet Joseph, as also confirmed in Doctrine and Covenants 59:18, “all things which come of the earth, in the season thereof are made for the benefit and the use of man.”
Besides identifying and giving guidelines for kinds of foods which contribute to health and vitality, the Word of Wisdom also identifies some substances which are harmful. Joseph counseled us that alcoholic drinks (strong drinks), tobacco, and hot drinks (identified as coffee and tea) are “not for the body, neither for the belly” (D&C 89:5–9). Massive studies done over the last two decades have generated volumes of medical evidence which validate this part of the revelation given to Joseph Smith. Numerous reports issued by the Surgeon General, the American Heart Association, the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, the American Medical Association, and others have pointed out the detrimental effects of these substances to the body, such as higher incidence of heart attacks, strokes, cancer, and other life-threatening diseases (Swanson 470–502, 632–36; LDS Church News [20 Feb 1983] 1–20 [The whole issue is on the Word of Wisdom]; Ensign 17:32–60 [There are several articles on the Word of Wisdom in these pages]).
Recent reports from the National Cancer Institute show that Utah has the lowest rate of cancer in the United States, and researchers believe the lifestyle of the population, which is made up predominantly of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is a major factor. Brenda Edwards, associate director of the institute’s surveillance program said, “It illustrates a group of individuals [that] have healthy practice in regard to diet because of the large Mormon population. There is an absences of smoking among most of the population [and] alcohol is not consumed. These are factors that are often related to cancer risk” (Seamons 5). Similarly, in 1982, Professor John Williams, head of the department of biochemistry at the Australian National University and president of the Australian Cancer Society stated, "Mormons' death rate from cancer is less than one-fourth of that of the general population." Professor Williams pointed out that in order to prevent cancer, people must be ‘“prepared to change their diets and alter lifestyle habits. It is completely established that smoking can cause lung cancer while excesses of alcohol, fat, coffee, smoked and pickled foods, cyclamates, saccharine and fungally contaminated carbohydrates are inadvisable. A diet 'rich in fiber, green vegetables, such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower, with adequate vitamin C and A, gives protection’” (“Scientist”). This sounds like the counsel given by Joseph Smith in the Word of Wisdom over 150 years ago.
Wisdom and good sense suggest that there are also other substances not listed in D&C 89 which should not be used. President Spencer W. Kimball has said, “We hope our people will eliminate from their lives all kinds of drugs so far as possible. Too many depend upon drugs as tranquilizers and sleep helps, which is not always necessary. Certainly numerous young people have been damaged or destroyed by the use of marijuana and other deadly drugs. We deplore such” (6).
The Word of Wisdom does endorse the use of alcohol and tobacco for some external medical purposes. The external use of alcohol is common for disinfecting the skin before operations and needle punctures. Also, tobacco “is an herb for bruises and all sick cattle, to be used with judgment and skill” (D&C 89:8). In 1982, Dr. Rulon S Fracis of the Human Performance Research Center at Brigham Young University said that his research indicated that bruises treated with tobacco juice heat 20 percent faster than untreated bruises. He was prompted to investigate the healing effect of tobacco after BYU athletic trainer, Marvin Roberson, returned from 1971 Balkan games in Yugoslavia with stories of trainers spraying a commercially manufacture tobacco spray on basketball players’ bruises. The healing may be produced by one of the alkaloids found in tobacco (Francis).
Faithful Saints who endeavor to live the Word of Wisdom are given promises which are well worth the efforts required to learn obedience. In Doctrine and Covenants 89:18–20, Joseph recorded the following:
And all saints who remember and keep and do these sayings, walking in obedience to the commandments, shall receive health in their naval and marrow to their bones; And shall find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures; And shall run and not be weary and shall walk and not faint.
Thus, if we eat properly and walk in obedience to God’s commandments, we will receive gifts of physical, mental, and spiritual health. Although it appears that the Lord is primarily addressing spiritual blessings in verse 20, perhaps he is also indicating here that running and walking (exercise) are natural, positive activities we should engage in regularly, and that by eating properly, we will be more successful in these activities (Updike 91). With regards to mental development, the higher-education quotient of the Latter-day Saints is the best in the United States. This is a very important feedback loop. Proper eating makes exercise easier, and proper exercise and eating improve the mental attitude and the quality and longevity of life (Updike 87; Rosenfeld 224, 282, 307).
The modern day "Law of Health” called the Word of Wisdom continues to be supported by modern scientific studies. Both the “do” and the “don’t” guidelines are being proven in many laboratories throughout the world. As more and more physicians and scientists note the correlation between the LDS lifestyle and health record, increasing numbers agree with the conclusion of Dr. James E. Enstrom, UCLA epidemiologist, “They must be doing something right” (Davidson 82; emphasis in original). It is remarkable that Joseph Smith taught these principles back in 1833.
Einstein’s theory of relativity is based upon a profound interrelationship between space and time (Resnick 3–38). All measurements of space and time depend upon relative motion. The principle of no absolute time was revealed to Joseph Smith in Doctrine and Covenants 130:4–5: “Is not the reckoning of God’s time, angel’s time, prophet’s time, and man’s time, according to the planet on which they reside? I answer, yes.” The measurement of space and time differs for all observers who are moving through space and time with respect to each other. Anyone moving relative to us is in a different realm of time. We cannot speak meaningfully about space without implying time. Every object, every planet, every star, every galaxy, every person exists in a four–dimensional (four-vector) realm called the “space-time continuum” (Ridley 18–20, 42, 45).
According to Einstein’s special theory of relativity, as an object moves by at high speeds, it contracts relative to a stationary observer in the direction of motion in both space and time. As it approaches the speed of light, its length in this direction becomes shorter and shorter, and it time becomes less and less, and at the speed of light, both theoretically disappear. For example, if a space traveler were to travel to the center of our galaxy and back at the speed of light, he would have experience very little time lapse at all, whereas as observer on earth would have seen thousands of years pass. Thus, if spaceships were available to travel at relativistic speeds, a person could continually look into the future of the development of the earth by taking frequent flights (Hewitt 568–80).
Although most scientists believe that nothing can travel greater than the speed of light and still send out detectable signals, the search continues for such particles called ‘“tachyons'" (Hewitt 580). According to Einstein’s relativistic equations, if a person were to travel faster that the speed of light, his space-time would be inverted relative to the space–time of an earth observer (Leighton 27–39; Bondi 129–46; Hewitt 360–86; Cook and Cook 77–80). In this high-velocity realm, space becomes time, and time becomes space. Joseph Smith was apparently familiar with this concept, since in the explanation of Fig. 1 for Facsimile no. 2 in the book of Abraham a situation like this occurs: “Kolob, signifying the first creation, nearest to celestial, or the residence of God. First in government, the last pertaining to the measurement of time. The measurement according to celestial time, which celestial time signifies one day to a cubit.” This suggests the equivalence of time and distance and implies that one can be interchanged with the other.
In revelations to Joseph Smith more that 150 years ago, the framework of doctrine for understanding the theory of relativity is remarkably present. The equivalence of space and time in the celestial sphere is indicated in Doctrine and Covenants 3:2, “For God doth not walk in crooked paths, neither doth he turn to the right hand nor to the left, neither doth he vary from that which he hath said, therefore his paths are straight, and his course is one eternal round." This suggests that the shortest distance between two points in a 4-D world is a curved path, which is a basic concept of Einstein’s general theory of relativity.
With respect to the concept of time, Joseph was familiar with Alma’s teaching that “time only is measured unto men” (Alma 40:8). In Doctrine and Covenants 88:110, Joseph records, “there shall be no longer,” and in 84:100, “time is not longer.” These statements refer to the end of man’s mortal probation prior to the end of the Millennium, but might they also have further ramifications about the vanishing of time as suggested by Einstein’s special theory when travel velocities reach the speed of light? Other statements in Doctrine and Covenants 88:109–10 and 84:100 may also suggest the vanishing of space as well.
The full possibilities of the theory of relativity involving infinite space-time contractions in a four-dimensional space is clearly evident in D&C 130:7, where Joseph Smith records that angels “reside in the presence of God, on a globe like a sea of glass and fire, where all things for their glory are manifest, past, present, and future, and are continually before the Lord.” Speaking of God, Joseph also records, “He comprehendeth all things, and all things are before him, and all things are round about him” (D&C 88:41). Evidently, God is not limited by time and space as telestial man is limited. Being able to see the past, present, and future is a phenomenon associated with travel at very high velocities, approaching and exceeding the speed of light. These conditions are described only for the celestial glory. Although we, as telestial beings, may not comprehend some of these concepts, they are certainly food for thought and keys to further understanding.
Another remarkable result from the theory of relativity is Einstein’s law of the equivalence of mass and energy, expressed by the famous equation E=mc2, where “E” is energy, “m” is mass, and “c” is the speed of light. Thus, mass and energy are interchangeable, as well as space and time. The classical law of the conservation of total energy becomes the conservation of mass-energy at relativistic speeds. With regards to this principle, Joseph Smith recorded:
Now, the word create came from the word baurau, which does not mean to create out of nothing; it means to organize; the same as a man would organize materials and build a ship. Hence we infer that God had materials to organize the world out of chaos—chaotic matter, which is element, and in which dwells all the glory. Element had an existence from the time he had. The pure principles of element are principles which can never be destroyed; they may be organized and re-organized, but not destroyed. They had no beginning and can have no end. (TPJS 350–52)
In Doctrine and Covenants 93:29, the prophet also writes, "Intelligence, or the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be.” In addition, the Prophet taught, “There is no such thing as immaterial matter. All spirit is matter, but it is fine and pure” (131:7). Combining these teachings, “spirit element,” also called intelligence, or the light of truth, has always existed. Through a spiritual birth, this light (energy attributes) is transformed into spirit bodies (pure, refined matter), but it cannot be created nor destroyed. In other words, any change in energy attributes corresponds to a change in mass. It seems the prophet Joseph clearly understood and taught this principle.
In addition to its central role in the theory of relativity, light plays a vital role in our everyday world and in the microscopic world. What is light? Where does it come from? What are its properties? Joseph Smith left us with many interesting insights about light.
Revelations to the Prophet point out that light, truth, intelligence, and spirit are all intimately related. For example, in Doctrine and Covenants 84: 45, Joseph records “For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.”Thus a better understanding of light involves a better understanding of truth and spirit. As already noted, Joseph also associates the primal element called “intelligence” with light:
Ye were also in the beginning with the Father; that which is Spirit, even the Spirit of truth. . . . He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light, until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things. Man was also in the beginning with God. Intelligence, or the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be. (D&C 93:23, 28–29)
Similarly, in the King Follett Discourse, Joseph taught that our first existence in pre-mortality was an intelligence:
The mind or intelligence which man possesses is co-equal with God himself. . . . I am dwelling on the immortality of the spirit of man. Is it logical to say that the intelligence of spirits is immortal, and yet that it had a beginning? The intelligence of spirits had no beginning, neither will it have an end. That is good logic. That which has a beginning may have an end. There never was a time when there were not spirits; for they are co-equal [co-eternal] with our Father in heaven. (TPJS 353)
As suggested in the previous section, a possible implication from these statements is that the intelligence of spirits is the spirit element from which spirit bodies were born (Abr 3:17–22). This spirit element is identified as the “light of truth,” and since light shines or radiates outward from its source, intelligence apparently radiates truth, which is the “knowledge of things as they are, as they were, and as they are to come” (D&C 93: 24). In addition, Joseph points out that intelligence is self-existent with God and cannot be created nor destroyed. However, it can evidently be magnified, and through a spiritual birth process, it becomes a spirit body, or “organized” intelligence (Abr 3: 22–23).
Quoting again from Doctrine and Covenants 131:7–8, the Prophet taught that the spirit is made of fine or pure matter: “there is no such thing as immaterial matter. All spirit is matter, but it is more fine of pure, and can only be discerned by purer eyes; We cannot see it; but when our bodies are purified we shall see that it is all matter.” Integrating these teachings of Joseph Smith from D&C 93, 131, and the King Follett Discourse, a reasonable conclusion is that the Lord organized spirit matter from light, or intelligence. Consequently, Joseph had some insight into the modern scientific concept of a fundamental relationship between light and matter.
In the revelation known and the “olive leaf” (D&C 88), which was given to Joseph Smith at Kirtland, Ohio, on 27 December 1832, the Prophet records “light proceedeth forth from the presence of God to fulfill the immensity of space—The light which is in all things, which giveth life to all things, which is the law by which all things are governed, even the power of God who sitteth upon his throne, who is in the bosom of eternity, who is in the midst of all things" (D&C 88:12–13). This is a very profound, far-reaching statement. Light radiating from God is in all things, gives life to all things, and is the law that governs all things. Consequently, matter is governed by light, and condensed, normalized light vectors are the basic functions of quantum mechanics instead of probability distribution functions based upon the uncertainty principle (Cook and Cook 33–34). God, the super-intelligence of our order (Abr 3:19), radiates light and truth “in all things” and “through all things” (D&C 88:41).
The Savior Jesus Christ is the medium through which this light carrying truth is radiated to our part of the universe, and it is sometimes referred to as the “light of Christ”:
He [Jesus Christ] ascended up on high, as also he descended below all things . . . that he might be in all and through all things, the light of truth; Which truth shineth. This is the light of Christ. As also he is in the sun . . . and the power thereof by which it was made. As also he is the moon, and is the light of the moon, and the power thereof by which it was made; As also the light of the stars, and the power thereof by which they were made; And the earth also and the power thereof, even the earth upon which you stand. And the light which shineth, which giveth you light, is through him who enlightenth your eyes, which is the same light that quickeneth your understandings. . . . He comprehendeth all things, and all things are before him, and all things are round about him; and he is above all things . . . and is round about all things; and all things are by him, and of him, even God, forever and ever. And again, verily I say unto you he hath given a law unto all things, by which they move in their times and their seasons. . . . And they give light to each other in their times and in their seasons.
The Lord has complete control over physical light, as well as its ability to enlighten the mind and quicken the understanding. Life itself is the result of special interactions of light in the organizations which God has created. The insights in these revelations given to Joseph Smith are truly inspiring and edifying, and we have only barely begun to understand them.
Through obedience to his Father, the Savior grew “from grace to grace, until he received a fulness" (D&C 93:13). He magnified his intelligence (or mind) until he was filled with light and truth and comprehended all things. Truth is “knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come” (D&C 93:24). This is the state of celestial glory “where all things for their glory are manifest, past, present, and future” (D&C 130:7), which as noted earlier, is possible in reference frames moving at great velocities relative to the speed of light. The Lord told Joseph that “the glory of God is intelligence, or in other words, light and truth” (D&C 93:36). “Truth shineth” (D&C 88:7), or radiates outward as light, to other intelligences to convey knowledge of what has been, what is, and what will be.
Following the pattern of the Savior, Joseph taught that those who seek and adhere to the truth and obey divine law will receive the light of truth: “And if your eye be single to my glory, your whole bodies shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in you; and that body which is filled with light comprehendeth all things” (D&C 88:67).
This implies that by proper attunement to the source of truth, the knowledge and understanding carried by light from Christ can be absorbed by our bodies through a phenomenon analogous to quantum mechanical resonance. This attunement is like the light-matter interactions producing resonance phenomena in radio, television, and spectroscopy. When attuned to spiritual resonant frequencies through obedience, we receive more and more light (truth) until we are perfected. "that which is of God is light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day” (D&C 50:24). Similarly, the Prophet taught, “He that keepeth his commandments receiveth truth and light, until he is glorified in truth and knoweth all things” (D&C 93:28), and “the day shall come when you shall comprehend even God, being quickened in him and by him” (D&C 88:49).
Hence, from the teachings recorded by the Prophet Joseph Smith in Doctrine and Covenants 84, 88, 93, 130, and 131, we gain some understanding of light and of its role in (a) the microscopic (quantum) world, (b) the everyday world of learning and development, and (c) the relativistic world of high velocities. Light has been organized by God as the governing law of the universe and the matter in it. It is in all things.
Modern scientific disciplines, such as quantum (wave) mechanic, quantum electrodynamics, quantum field theory, and relativity, are all based upon relationships between light and matter. I have long thought that matter may be formed from light through a phase transition involving the Bose-Einstein condensation of light particle (Benson “Diagrammatic”; Benson, “Self-Consistent,” 92–96). Obviously, Joseph Smith was familiar with many fundamental ideas of modern science over 150 years ago, which is truly remarkable.
By examining the writings and teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, we can conclude that God revealed many correct, profound, modern, scientific principles to him which are still being discovered and validated in the scientific world today.
Although he was a man of little formal schooling, the Prophet became familiar with numerous modern scientific principles, ranging from the microscopic quantum world, to the everyday classical world, to relativistic realms as he fulfilled his spiritual stewardship under the tutelage of God. His insights are being found valid today, and they give deeper understanding and provide many basic keys for extending our knowledge of modern scientific concepts. He spoke as a Prophet of God. He is a Prophet of God.
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