Gentile Persuasion wrote:
Please excuse the following outburst of pedantry, but this is kind of a complicated issue.
One of Christianity's most challenging problems is how to reconcile monotheism with the belief that Jesus is the Son of God. Traditional Christianity does this through trinitarianism, which holds that there are three separate persons in one God.
Historically, there are two periods when non-trinitarianism was relatively popular. The first was during early Christianity when trinitarian beliefs were not yet fully formed. The second was the Age of Reason in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Some of the alternatives to trinitarianism are unitarianism (though Jesus was the Son of God, he wasn't really God, as believed by Unitarians, Deists, and early on by Ebionists), modalism (God's three persons are not actually separate, but are simply different manifestations of the one God, as suggested by some passages in the original Book of Mormon), and henotheism (Jesus is a separate God from God the Father, but is by nature subordinate to God the Father, as believed by Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, and early on by Arians, or is dominant over God the Father, as believed by Marcionists).
Henotheism is a form of polytheism, which leads to the question: If there can be more than one God, why can't there be many, and why can't we become gods ourselves? Some cultures, such as ancient Greco-Roman culture, accepted the belief that people could be raised to become gods. As D. Michael Quinn has pointed out, this is the closest historical parallel to Mormon belief.
This belief differs from the idea of theosis in traditional Christianity, which is that people can acquire many of the virtues that are personified by God without either becoming gods themselves (as in Greco-Roman religion) or losing their individual identities by being merged into God (as in some forms of Hinduism and Buddhism). The metaphor used for traditional Christian theosis is that an individual can become like a perfectly clean window through which God's light can shine.
But here's my point: The reason people get so exercised about this is because there's no simple, intuitive answer. Proof-texts can be culled to support any of these positions. It's an argument with no solution that can be reached by research or discussion.
You are correct that scripture is open enough for many interpretations. I personally believe that Jesus and the Holy Ghost are separate and my reasoning stems from what Christ said on the cross.
Mat 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
But of course God could be so complex that my reasoning does not apply.
Now we do have many examples of beings being called a god yet we know that they are not in the classic sense. More of a title because of the powers they can command. So can someone be called a god and demand worship even though the powers of that being can be taken away? From my perspective there is just not enough data and I will just wait and find out. No matter what the reality turns out to be it will not change the course I find myself on.