Lorenzo Snow and the Origin of his Famous "Couplet"

Lorenzo Snow, the 5th President of the Mormon Church, originated the phrase that every active Latter-day Saint can quote: “As man now is, God once was; as God now is, man may be.”

However, Latter-day Saints often miss the singular significance of this quote. A Mormon may well say that he does not believe in more than one God, and in the next breath quote the Snow couplet.

But, if God was once as man now is, obviously He once was a man. And if man may become as God now is, obviously man may become a God.

The following is from the Mormon published Encyclopedia of Mormonism:

Lorenzo Snow is remembered best for three things. First, he is remembered for his emphasis on tithing, which helped bring the Church out of financial bondage in the last three years of his life. . . . Second, Lorenzo Snow is remembered for his couplet "As man now is, God once was; as God now is, man may be." These words came by revelation to Lorenzo when he was a young man in Nauvoo. Their truthfulness was reaffirmed when he heard the Prophet Joseph Smith teach the very same concept. —The source for this document is The teachings of Lorenzo Snow , Preface

•A Page from the LDS Encyclopedia