“The Father of Heaven and of Earth Shall Manifest Himself Unto Them in the Flesh”

Bryan Richards

We like to think of the Godhead as consisting of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Therefore, references to Jehovah as "the Father," can sometimes be confusing. Here, Nephi is prophesying that the Father of heaven and of earth will become mortal and minister to the Jews.

We need to look at how Jesus Christ can be referred to as "the Father." Jesus Christ can be referred to as the father in three different contexts. First, as the creator of the heavens and the earth (under the direction of Elohim), He becomes the "Father of heaven and of earth." Second, as the redeemer, he becomes our spiritual father by redeeming us from spiritual death. When we accept Him as our Savior, we become sons and daughters unto Christ. If we are his sons and daughters, then he must be our father. And now, because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the children of Christ, his sons, and his daughters; for behold, this day he hath spiritually begotten you (Mosiah 5:7). Third, Jesus Christ is "the Father" because of his special designation as the Only-Begotten of the Father (Elohim) in the flesh. Abinadi explained how Christ is both the Father and the Son, The Father, because he was conceived by the power of God; and the son, because of the flesh; thus becoming the Father and Son (Mosiah 15:3).

Neal A. Maxwell

"Jesus is even described as the Father, because he is the Father-Creator of this and other worlds. Furthermore, he is the Father of all who are born again spiritually. When we take upon ourselves his name and covenant to keep his commandments, we then become his sons and daughters, 'the children of Christ.' Additionally, since he and the Father are one in attributes and in purpose, Jesus acts for the Father through divine investiture, sometimes speaking as the Father." (Mosiah, Salvation Only Through Christ, ed. By Nyman and Tate, pp. 5-6 as taken from Latter-day Commentary on the Book of Mormon compiled by K. Douglas Bassett, p. 62)