Saturday, October 18, 2014

How To Become An Apostate In One Afternoon

Previously: The Problem With Denver Snuffer
 
If you'd like to see how difficult it can be to follow the counsel of Church leaders and still retain your membership in the church, take a look at what happened last Sunday to LDS blogger Adrian Larsen and his wife, Tausha. They were excommunicated for essentially heeding the advice of one of our apostles.

Apostle David Bednar has of late been concerned with how Mormonism is often wrongly perceived and misunderstood, and so last August Elder Bednar gave an address at BYU in which he encouraged individual members to flood the internet and social media, with the aim of correcting falsehoods about the church,
promoting truth, and boldly testifying of Christ. This is what Adrian Larsen has been doing with his Mormon-themed blog To The Remnant since early summer: correcting falsehoods, promoting truth, and boldly testifying of Christ.

But because Adrian did so, last Sunday a high council was convened in his stake and he was expelled from our society for the sin of apostasy.  So was his wife, Tausha, in a bizzare, highly unusual double-excommunication proceeding in which both were tried and sentenced together in the same proceeding.   Both had been devoted members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints all their lives, yet in one afternoon representatives of that same Church officially declared them to be apostates and pariahs.

It is still not clear to either Adrian or his wife why Tausha was given the boot, since she herself had never blogged or written anything that anyone on the High Council ever alluded to. The only thing they can conclude is that Tausha was expelled because of guilt by association. She is the wife of a Mormon blogger. Apparently that is now an egregious sin, in and of itself.

It also wasn't clear to either of them from the proceedings what act of apostasy they were accused of having committed, for under the traditional definition, in order to be an apostate one must have at some point renounced his or her former beliefs and and actively fought against Christ and His church, something neither Adrian nor Tausha has ever been accused of.  Rather than accuse either of these good people of turning their backs on the faith, the High Council focused their interrogations on a particular post of Adrian's, the fourth part of a series on "Hearsay and Heresy" which he titled Never Led Astray. I found this post to be highly readable and extremely informative.  And frankly, I cannot find any factual errors anywhere in it.  This piece appears to be right in line with Apostle Bednar's charge to all of us to combat the pervasive misconceptions about Mormonism by countering them with truth.

Adrian has kindly given me permission to republish his controversial post below. Perhaps others reading it can detect where he has promoted falsehood rather than truth, or failed to adequately testify of Christ. If so, I hope you will help me understand what the controversy is by pointing those findings out in the comment section afterward.  


                                   Never Led Astray
                                                                     By Adrian Larsen

I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh; for I know that cursed is he that putteth his trust in the arm of flesh. Yea, cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm. (2 Nephi 4:34)
In the previous posts in this series, we've examined some manufactured quotes--falsely attributed to Joseph Smith--which are used to promote false doctrine. Among the ideas promoted:

  • The majority of the twelve can never go astray.
  • The records of the church can never go astray (not sure how they could...)
  • The majority of the church members can never be misled.
  • The majority of the church members will go to the Celestial Kingdom, and
  • Anyone who says otherwise is on the high road to apostasy.
Oh yeah...and the moon is inhabited by people that dress like Quakers.

Now make no mistake, the above ideas are FALSE, never taught by Joseph, not supported by scripture, and frankly really stupid if you think about them. They were made up in an effort to strengthen an agenda and win a historical power struggle with other branches of the restoration movement. Yet we persist in believing and teaching these ideas, even featuring them in our official church manuals. We find it more important to win an argument than to be on the side of truth.


Not good, but it gets worse. 


If we really want to get to the root of the problem we must consider the holiest of the holy grails of unbelief.

Warning: Confronting unbelief is never easy. You may find the following uncomfortable to consider. I sympathize with you; this wasn't easy for me, either. All I can do is plead with you to please hear me out. If you love God, value truth, and want to develop real faith, you'll need to confront your unbelief and seek truth above tradition. Saving faith can only be founded upon truth. If it is founded upon anything else, it is not faith. If confronting unbelief is the only way to know God, I'll gladly make that trade.
OK, on to the problem. This is the 800-pound gorilla of false doctrine that affects every part of the church from top to bottom. It is simply stated as follows:

The Prophet can never lead us astray.


The mantra begins in primary, where we march to the drumbeat of "Follow the prophet, follow the prophet, follow the prophet, don't go astray."

By the time we reach adulthood, we take great comfort in the idea that no matter what, as long as we're following the prophet, we're A-1 guaranteed entry into the celestial kingdom, because there's just no way the guy can ever make a mistake.


So pervasive is this unbelief, that we've now placed the prophet in a place of priority above the scriptures, above the truth, and even above the Lord. These are bold statements to make, but they are absolutely true in our religious practice and beliefs.


For examples, look to Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet, a talk given by the apostle Ezra Taft Benson in 1980. In this talk, Elder Benson asserted, among other things, that words of the prophet are more important than what is written in our scriptures, that anything that comes out of the prophet's mouth is revelation, and that even if the prophet tells you to do evil, God is bound to honor you for doing it. 


When this talk was given, it was roundly rejected by Spencer W. Kimball, who was the prophet at the time. In fact this talk very nearly earned Elder Benson a formal rebuke from the First Presidency, and he was required to apologize to the Quorum of the Twelve and explain himself to a combined meeting of all the general authorities of the church. In short, President Kimball was MUCH displeased with what was said, and considered it false doctrine.


Oddly enough, the same talk, filled with the same false doctrine, was just given in General Conference in 2010, without a peep from the Twelve, the First Presidency, or the general membership of the church. Nobody bothered to address how the doctrine could be false in 1980, but true 30 years later. Did God change the doctrine? Or did someone else?


So consider this: Brigham Young taught many things that the church has since flatly denied and openly called false (polygamy, Adam-god theory, blood atonement, refusal to ordain blacks, for example.) Obeying Brigham in these items nowadays will get you excommunicated. Yet when Brigham taught these things, he insisted he was speaking the word of the Lord. 

Was Brigham wrong? Or is the church today wrong? Remember saving doctrine never changes. God does not vary. Somebody was wrong. Somebody misled you. Was it Brigham, or is it today's leaders? They can't both be right.


This deserves careful thought. Your salvation is at stake.


Since this series is about origins of doctrines, let's go back and take a look at where this particular doctrine of infallibility came from. Like many issues in our history, it all starts with polygamy.


As you may be aware, during Joseph Smith's day, the practice of plural marriage was limited and secret. But Brigham Young went public with the teaching in 1852, advocating plural marriage as a necessary part of the LDS faith, which he practiced with gusto.


Due to national backlash about this practice, government persecution threatened plural marriage in the LDS church. Seeking protection under the first amendment, Brigham began forcefully teaching that polygamy was not only part of the LDS religion, but a fundamental part of the belief system--so essential, in fact, that exaltation was simply impossible without polygamy. It was polygamy or damnation. Period.


By insisting plural marriage was so fundamental a part of the religion, Brigham hoped the religious freedom guarantee in the first amendment would protect the practice. 


The church then commenced a 30-year series of court battles against various laws and attempts to curtail polygamy. Losses mounted for the church as government pressure and threats increased.


By 1890, in a final blow, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Edmunds-Tucker act, disincorporating the church and seizing church assets, including the temples. Though Wilford Woodruff, church president at the time, had previously vowed that the church would never give up polygamy, he found himself in a tough situation.


On the one hand, there had been 40 years of insistent teaching by prophets that polygamy was absolutely necessary for exaltation, that the church would never abandon it under any circumstances, and that the Lord would uphold the church against all its enemies. 


On the other hand, there was the U.S. government, which had already disincorporated the church, seized church assets, and publicly stated it was coming for the temples next. Meanwhile many church members and leaders were languishing in jail, facing court fines, and living in secret to evade the law.


Wilford Woodruff was indeed in a tough situation. 


Faced with the destruction of the church and no chance of statehood for Utah, under pressure from the government, he issued the press release now known as the Manifesto (Official Declaration 1), in which he stated that the church would no longer perform plural marriages. This statement was designed to mislead congress into believing the practice would actually stop. 


Not to be misled, congress insisted that the statement not only be published in the press, but actually presented at General Conference and sustained by the church membership as a binding policy change.


And so it was that on October 6, 1890, Wilford Woodruff found himself standing at the tabernacle pulpit, before the church and the world, reading a statement that said he now intended to do what he swore he would never do, and which he himself had taught the Lord would never allow. He intended to publicly abandon polygamy. But he needed political cover for this fundamental change in the very foundation of then-practiced LDS mormonism. As one doctrine was abandoned, he needed another to justify it. 


So he said the following:

"I say to Israel, the Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as President of this church to lead you astray. It is not in the program. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that, the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so He will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty."
And thus was invented the doctrine of infallibility, now applied to each President of the LDS church. 

Why can't the President lead you astray? Because he said so.


Of course, the doctrine has since grown and expanded to the point that rational people actually believe they can safely entrust their salvation to another fallen mortal man, despite pointed scriptural warnings to the contrary. They actually consider it safe to surrender their agency to another, not realizing that this was Lucifer's plan from the beginning!


The doctrine teaches that it is impossible for the prophet to lead us astray, and that if he attempts to do so, the Lord is obligated to kill him. Seriously. And we're OK with that? Knowing how many mistakes I make, I'm sure glad I'm not the prophet...


This doctrine is not scriptural. This doctrine did not originate with Joseph Smith--Joseph actually taught the opposite. I'd say more along these lines, but there's no way I can possibly hold a candle to the summary given by Rock Waterman in his blog, Pure Mormonism:
"You can search the scriptures and the general conference archives until your eyes swim and never find one instance of a recorded revelation from God declaring the prophets will never lead us astray, or that God wants us to "follow" them.  We didn't get that doctrine from God. We have it because one fine day in 1890 Wilford Woodruff just pulled it out of his butt." 
Not much I can add to that. 

Wilford said it, he got the vote he needed to convince the congress he was serious, even though he wasn't (the church secretly continued polygamous marriages until at least 1904), and Utah got statehood. 


As a by-product, we were left with a lie.


We've since repeated the lie so often and so well, with so much passion and embellishment, that it's become THE new foundational doctrine of the LDS church. A recent example from General Conference states, "We have the Lord’s personal promise that the prophets will never lead us astray." I'd love to know when and where the Lord made that "personal promise." But all I can find is an apocryphal premise.


We've replaced polygamy with infallibility. 


Today, the prophet can do no wrong, and therefore, by extension, the church can do no wrong. And if it's impossible for the church to be wrong, then there's really no need for individual LDS members to do anything other than "follow the prophet" right into the Celestial Kingdom. 


We've traded the Savior's injunction of "Come, Follow Me" with Satan's imitation, "Go, follow him."


Cursed, indeed, is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm. (2 Nephi 4:34)


Speaking of our day, Nephi said, "...they have all gone astray save it be a few, who are the humble followers of Christ; nevertheless, they are led, that in many instances they do err because they are taught by the precepts of men." (2 Nephi 28:14)


Therefore, in our day:

  • ALL are astray
  • Except a few who are humble followers of Christ
  • And these humble followers are misled by their leaders in MANY INSTANCES.
Therefore if you're not astray, you're likely misled. 


So what's the solution?

There's really no need to despair. The gospel of Jesus Christ is designed to save you without the need for a man to act as the intermediary between you and God. Remember, "the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel, and He employeth no servant there." (2 Nephi 9:41) Salvation is an individual endeavor between you and God. It always has been. 

Certainly the church offers important things we need: Ordinances, opportunities to serve, a community of believers to love--in short, a lab in which to practice the gospel. 

But when it comes to the one you should follow, you can go to God yourself. You can receive the revelation you need. You can even commune with angels and know the Lord face to face. The most important first step is to actually receive the Holy Ghost. Know why? Because the Holy Ghost is the one who truly can't lead you astray.

I'll talk more about that in a future post. Until then, ponder this:

Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ. Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do. (2 Nephi 32:3)

 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things. (Moroni 10:5)


                                 Afterward by Rock
Since the members of the stake high council that excommunicated Adrian and Tausha Larsen acted in violation of scripture, outside their proper authority, and contrary to the counsel given to members by an actual apostle of the Lord who encouraged us all to be actively engaged in countering false information, we can always hope these excommunications will be overturned on appeal to the First Presidency, right?

Well, I wouldn't hold my breath.  In spite of the numerous assurances by official Church Spokespersons that there is no effort to tell local leaders to keep members from blogging or discussing questions online, Adrian Larsen is only the latest of many who have been disciplined for blogging and discussing questions online. Take a look at this transcript by Brett Larson after he was ex'd, or consider the appalling disposition of Mormon blogger Will Carter's appeal here.

What is supposed to happen after an excommunication when either party is dissatisfied with the result is outlined in our Doctrine & Covenants:
“Should the parties or either of them be dissatisfied with the decision of said council, they may appeal to the high council of the seat of the First Presidency of the Church, and have a re-hearing, which case shall there be conducted, according to the former pattern written, as though no such decision had been made.” (D&C 102:26-27)

But the Church doesn't operate according to scripture anymore.  What happens these days is that the Brethren in Salt Lake never do review these cases. Instead they automatically defer to the local leaders as having made the right decision. 

When you have been officially declared an apostate by men in your stake who hold high callings and important titles, that means they're right and you're wrong.  No further review is necessary.  Shut up and wear that Scarlett 'A'.

                                                                *****
    UPDATE Monday, October 20: At the very time I was writing an reposting Adrian Larsen's piece, he was posting a follow-up to this one, which contains further insight as to what occurred, what it means, and how we all need to take a close look at the true damage being inflicted on the church we love.  In short, this is essential reading. It's important, the kind of thing I wish I had the power to shout from the rooftops.

Adrian's latest is entitled 40 Days On Death Row and you can access it by clicking here.                                                     

Important Notice: I again remind those who wish to comment that posting only as "Anonymous" is no longer allowed. You do not have to use your real name, but if you insist on choosing "Anonymous" from the drop-down menu, you must invent a username and place that either at the top or bottom of your comment so that readers can tell you apart from the many others who for some reason keep choosing to post under the anonymous option.   If you have a Google registration, use that one, otherwise it's best if you check the box that says "Name/URL", place your preferred username in in the "name" box, and ignore the box that asks for a URL. That way you can still remain anonymous if you so wish, but then other readers have a handle to address you with when responding. Comments missing any kind of identifying moniker are at risk of being deleted. I'm very strict about this because too many people posting as "anonymous" has created chaos in the past.

375 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 375 of 375
Brighamites Unite! said...

@BK
If Joseph Smiths successors would go so far as to change the wording of his diary and place the responsibility of their abominable practice upon his deceased shoulders, I would be very careful to reconsider what we have been told he said and taught.

BK said...

BU,

Yes, I agree, we should be very careful to accept anything supposedly said or written by Joseph that he didn't publish during his lifetime and put his stamp of approval on it.

Fortunately he gave us many proven and published statements, scriptures and warnings that clearly taught against polygamy.

If Joseph was lying and truly abusively running around behind his wife's back with teenagers, then it's all moot and he wasn't a true prophet, if he wasn't lying then Brigham Young was clearly the guilty one. Either way it's impossible for the Church to be true today.

And as Joseph himself even warned us, nor should we believe anything Joseph said that is contrary to the teachings of Christ, whether he really said it or not.

So again, even if Joseph really did teach polygamy secretly, it still was wrong, for Christ condemned all polygamy as adultery in the New Test.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of whether or not this guy's post is true (I don't know because I don't have the patience to read the whole thing) do you sincerely want your readers to believe that you cannot understand why the church would have a problem with this? Or are you being sarcastic? Are you really unable to see why any organization would be opposed to public ridicule? I'm sorry, but I am having a difficult time taking you seriously right now if so...

Ashley A

Anonymous said...

To suggest that Adrian Larsen was excommunicated for simply following the admonitions of Elder Bednar is completely misleading and dishonest. The majority of his blog posts thus far were written before Elder Bednar even gave his talk at BYU. To try to connect the blog with the talk is an illogical and false conclusion, not to mention that no sources or footnotes were used by Rock to backup his claims.
I'm sorry, but this is just sloppy blogging.

The Watcher

Blessed said...

This "church"(TM) has become a for profit entity. The final goal of which is to reach the temple where you receive your secret handshakes, get your apron and magic underwear then maintain that status through faithful payment of your heavenly dues.This is what Mormonism has become. It's basically Freemasonry with the charity removed (it's too costly), and streamlined for maximum return on your sacred funds and profits built up for maximum profit of your "sacred", tithes I mean the Lords investment capital . Because we all know how his one true church which he is directing through revelation, would fail if it ever ran out of money (He needs your silver coin to buy all those loafs and fishes don't you know). God must invest Billions of dollars of your sacred tithes with Babylon (while people sleep on benches), so he can skim off the profits, that way his "anointed" ones can hire themselves to direct these investments in the lords companies and to build shopping malls (to employ all the poor), So we can spread the message of salvation. I guess the Savior was wrong, a prophet truly can serve two masters, both God and mammon. That must have been one of the plain and profitable truths that were lost, or perhaps a simple translation error? In any case, ours is the privilege to live in a better day, that persecution and sacrifice crap is all behind us now, haven't you met the modern Mormons?..

The Watcher said...

For the record, I did not make the following comment and when I try to post a comment to say so, it tries to make me register or log in to google which messes up some other accounts that I am in



"To suggest that Adrian Larsen was excommunicated for simply following the admonitions of Elder Bednar is completely misleading and dishonest. The majority of his blog posts thus far were written before Elder Bednar even gave his talk at BYU. To try to connect the blog with the talk is an illogical and false conclusion, not to mention that no sources or footnotes were used by Rock to backup his claims.
I'm sorry, but this is just sloppy blogging.

The Watcher"

Alan Rock Waterman said...

SC,
To answer your question, Joseph Smith claimed to have received revelations directly from God; Wilford Woodruff did not claim that God told him the president of the church was incapable of leading the church astray. He expressed it as his own opinion.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

To the Anonymous "Watcher" at 9:05 am:

Please be aware that we already have someone who contributes here on occasion who goes by the username "The Watcher", so in the future you may wish to choose another username to avoid confusion. Our regular "Watcher" is the proprietor of the excellent blog "Because I Am Watching" located here:

http://onewhoiswatching.wordpress.com/

As for your attempted clarification that Adrian Larsen was blogging prior to the time David Bednar's presented his call to action, and that Larsen could not therefore have been motivated by Bednar's counsel, I assumed the reader understood from what I wrote that by the time Bednar had made those suggestions, Larsen was ALREADY been doing just that: blogging about Mormonism, as Bednar would later encourage others to do.

Please read the first two paragraphs again. The assertion was not that Larsen was following Bednar's direct suggestion, but that since earlier that summer Larsen had already been engaged in the very activity Bednar would later advise others to busy themselves doing. The point was ironic, that Larsen was excommunicated for as I put it, "essentially" heeding the advice of an apostle.

Perhaps It was not clear to some readers, but as you can see I was careful to point out out that Bednar spoke in August, while Larsen had been blogging since the previous June. It may be sloppy blogging on my part, as you suggest, or it might be sloppy reading on your part. Either way, I take the blame for not being more clear in the construction of my opening sentences.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Ashely A,
You ask, "Are you really unable to see why any organization would be opposed to public ridicule?"

Of course I can see it. That's the point. Any regular business "organization" held up to public ridicule by an employee of that organization would likely be fired for embarrassing his employers.

But this is not just some organization, and the members are not employees of those in positions of management. This is supposed to be the church of Jesus Christ, not some corporation seeking to protect its image from ridicule.

Yet those in management positions in the Church are acting like officers of a corporation instead of fellow members of the Lord's Church.

In a church, all members are supposed to have equal standing, and the charge of "apostasy" is reserved for those who renounce their faith, and turn against Christ. Calling out Church leaders when they violate the Laws of God is not apostasy; that's good stewardship, and something we should all be involved in when the criticism is true, whether it embarrasses the leaders or not.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Linda,
Thanks for that link to LDS Living.

Veracity said...

Wilford Woodruff said:
"I say to Israel, the Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as President of this church to lead you astray. It is not in the program. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that, the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so He will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty."

In Elder Uchtdorf’s talk, “Come, Join With Us”, he says that leaders in the church make mistakes and the church would be perfect if run by perfect beings.

Also, the church does not accept some of the things Brigham Young taught as true. So my questions is this: How wrong can the church leaders be before they are considered to be leading us astray?

If “any other man” leads people astray they will be removed also according to Wilford Woodruff. This appears to not be the case since there are plenty of people who want to lead you away from the prophets and from your “duty”.

How would a person who is leading people astray be removed? Would it be by death? Would it be by a lack of sustaining vote by the members of the church?

When would a person who is leading people astray be removed? Would this occur immediately? Could it take 30 years before leader is removed?

BK said...

Veracity,

It is impossible to make sense of W.W.'s quote, for it is false doctrine.

His claim has been proven false over & over by the fact that there have been countless 'so-called' prophets (starting with Joseph Smith) & church leaders throughout Church history and throughout the scriptures, who have led the people astray, contrary to the teachings of Christ.

The LDS are no different then Catholics who refuse to investigate their history and leaders against the teachings of Jesus Christ. Both thinking they have unbroken/true lines to authority and Christ. Both believing their leaders can't led them astray.

Many leaders in other religions teach this same principle too, that their leaders were/are practically perfect, and most people fall for it, cause it's just easier and sounds great to have the thinking/praying/proving done for them.

Andrew T said...

Rock,

I was reading Alma 32 the other day and stumbled across this...

"I say unto you, it is well that ye are cast out of your synagogues, that ye may be humble, and that ye may learn wisdom; for it is necessary that ye should learn wisdom; for it is because that ye are cast out, that ye are despised of your brethren because of your exceeding poverty, that ye are brought to a lowliness of heart; for ye are necessarily brought to be humble."

I think being cast out of the synagogue was somewhat analogous to being excommunicated and here Alma was, saying, "Yep, good. Glad it happened."

In Alma's instance, it was because the people were poor. Today, it's because the people are rejecting prophetic primacy.

Over the past few months I've been feeling a lot of pain about things my church is doing (I'm LDS). The other day I was pondering and saying, "Why does the Church have to be THIS flawed? I mean, really? All this?" The thought I had in response was (and who knows, maybe it was inspired), "Well, look at you and all the suffering you're going through trying to take your focus of a flawed church and moving it to Christ. How hard do you think it'd be if the church were really good?" "Good point," I said to myself in response. "Maybe it's really a good thing the Church is so messed up. People can easier see what's happening and repent."

Anyway, as you're (in general, not specific to you Rock) "cast out", look at it as a time to be humble and learn wisdom. Surely that's a good outcome from a painful experience.

Andrew T said...

Sorry,

not

"take your focus of a flawed church"

but

"take your focus off a flawed church"

For his purpose said...



"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them. Behold, I will show unto the Gentiles their weakness, and I will show unto them that faith, hope and charity bringeth unto me—the fountain of all righteousness.

"Wherefore, I know by this thing which thou hast said, that if the Gentiles have not charity, because of our weakness, that thou wilt prove them, and take away their talent, yea, even that which they have received, and give unto them who shall have more abundantly."

"And it shall come to pass that there shall be a great work in the land, even among the Gentiles [that's us], for their folly and their abominations shall be made manifest in the eyes of all people."


http://puremormonism.blogspot.com/2013/10/the-book-of-mormon-bait-switch.html

David Fife said...

I'm preparing my sunday school lesson for tomorrow morning. This is from the manual. 6-7 year olds....

"Tell the children that after each Apostle had eaten a piece of bread, Jesus blessed a drink made from grapes and gave it to the Apostles."

When LDS perceptions collide with the bible. The word of wisdom, as it is currently interpreted, trumps the new testament.

God forbid, that children would ever hear the word wine, inside the walls of the chapel, or that it wasn't wicked.

David

BK said...

David,

I've been thinking about that topic recently. If Jesus drank wine, and he was perfect and never sinned, then how can the LDS Church teach that drinking wine is a sin? Especially if it's mild homemade wine?

Certainly Christ knew all things and would have known about the 'Word of Wisdom' and if wine was wrong to drink.

After all, Christ knew that whatever he did, people would justify themselves to do also, so He knew he had to be our example in all things.

But, even though it may not be a 'sin', one must ask is it 'wise' to drink alcohol? Maybe the water back in Christ's day was not clean enough to drink.

Steven Lester said...

Elder Wickman once told me, in answer to this question, that the wine in the bible wasn't like the wine we have today. It was much more like grape juice, with practically no alcohol at all. So, that drink made from grapes is just like Welch's. And, of course, our Apostles know this because the Spirit told them so the last time they asked the question. Apostles are important because they can access the heavenly knowledge banks faster and clearer than the rest of us.

Tammy said...

Hence, the reason why in some of Jesus' parables he mentions 'not putting new wine in old bottles' because grape juice expands.
I wonder why Jesus couldn't have blessed the juice or water to be clean and pure and non- alcoholic! Hmmm.
He did, at one occasion turn water into wine or was it Welches, and it was better than the regular stuff. Probably the people of those days didn't know what wine tasted like and couldn't tell the difference.

Log said...

Leaving all the w(h)ining aside, it is curious to me that those who have such a problem with polygamy and Joseph marrying 14 year-old girls never mention, or maybe never noticed, God doing the same. Or maybe God didn't marry Mary? Who knows.

It seems only Muslims and atheists can consistently make that charge against Joseph - except Muslims can't since Mohammed married a 9-year-old, and atheists have no objective moral grounds for criticizing anything, and as for subjective moral grounds, well, everyone's got an opinion, don't they?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
BK said...

Log,

Last I checked the Bible doesn't give the age of Mary when she conceived. But chances are that she was a teenager.

But it says Mary was a virgin who had conceived, that means that it didn't happen in the ordinary way other women conceive or she wouldn't be called a virgin. She remained a virgin even after conception.

There are ways God could have caused Mary to conceive without even getting close to her.

Even we mere mortals have come up with ways to cause women to conceive by men they have never met.

There was no reason for God to have ever married Mary or even to have touched her.

And as far as Joseph & teenagers, if people had the Spirit & we're truly righteous, they would believe Joseph was 'innocent' in polygamy, for they would hold that he was innocent until 'proven' guilty, for there is no proof he ever preached or practiced polygamy, only vile hearsay which is not proof, no matter how much.

So people's belief about Joseph just reveals their own character.

Log said...

So, God's relationship with Mary is OK only just so long as he didn't enjoy it. And reproducing with women who aren't one's wife is OK just so long as one doesn't enjoy it.

OK!

The Bible doesn't say Mary was a virgin after conception. That would be Nephi - and Mary need not have been a virgin after conception, regardless of Nephi referring to her as "the virgin". After introducing her as "the virgin" it would be kinda complicated to refer to her as anything else afterwards.

And if one needs to judge the character of others - as opposed to repenting and purifying themselves that they may judge righteous judgement - then I suppose using "belief about Joseph" is as good a reason as preferring Mounds to Almond Joy. But I happen to think people's belief about others, whoever those others might be, just reveals their own character.

Log said...

For example, when someone purports to judge another with God's judgement - saying this or that person didn't have charity - I find myself wondering if that person knows what charity is, and if they are themselves God to announce such judgements, which judgements can only be accusations unless the person making them has knowledge whereof they speak.

And if they don't cite any valid source of firsthand knowledge, but purport to judge possession of charity from outward appearances, then my question is answered.

John 7:24
24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.

Captain Obvious said...

I do not believe this is "Log" It is FT

Anonymous said...

9 And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the Lord have not deceived that prophet; therefore I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.
(Ezekiel 14: 9) JST
I am amused at how the LDS membership justifies the actions, the lack of prophesy, and the teaching of false doctrines their leaders engage in with this scripture. They don’t even consider that they are not the Lord’s people nor that any of their leaders have ever been prophets of God, that God would destroy, after Joseph Smith Jr.
28 For there is not a place found on earth that he may come to and restore again that which was lost unto you, or which he hath taken away, even the fulness of the priesthood.

(Doctrine and Covenants | Section 124:28)

45 And if my people will hearken unto my voice, and unto the voice of my servants whom I have appointed to lead my people, behold, verily I say unto you, they shall not be moved out of their place.
46 But if they will not hearken to my voice, nor unto the voice of these men whom I have appointed, they shall not be blest, because they pollute mine holy grounds, and mine holy ordinances, and charters, and my holy words which I give unto them.
47 And it shall come to pass that if you build a house unto my name, and do not do the things that I say, I will not perform the oath which I make unto you, neither fulfil the promises which ye expect at my hands, saith the Lord.
48 For instead of blessings, ye, by your own works, bring cursings, wrath, indignation, and judgments upon your own heads, by your follies, and by all your abominations, which you practise before me, saith the Lord.

(Doctrine and Covenants | Section 124:45 - 48)

Gee were the saints moved out of their place? Yes!!! I need not say more.

Minerals Liberia said...

I believe that God will destroy those that will stand in his way, and in many ways the reputations and lives of some (prophets) have been just that....destroyed. The restoration of "all things" has been a process not a one time event. The LDS Church has proven to be "fixable" and has been able to renew itself over and over again with God. I agree- Call out those who need repentance but remember to the same degree you will be judged. Even modern day prophets have said the Church (organization and auxiliaries) are not perfect only Jesus Christ.




It is apparent that Joseph and others made bad choices, backed tracked, made errors and such. The Church almost didn't make it....But it is my testimony that God was still able to restore to the earth important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God. God is preparing the world for his second coming and the day is at hand, the wheat will be separated from the tares and those left standing with be the righteous. I have had a many extraordinary spiritual manifestations in my experience with Christianity earlier in my journey that holds me to the premise of salvation. Those experiences caused me to leave the congregation of the average and their petty grievances and move forward in my solo relationship with God. Many seek out mystical experiences with other Eastern religions yet I have found Christianity and the LDS Church to be quite mystical.

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Ryan Nickel said...

Please keep this clean. These posts are not becoming of saints or anyone else trying to follow Jesus.

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Nate said...

Wait I am confused. Was Log friar tuck? For real?

sfort said...

6. And a hiss and a memory shall issue out of the fast place, and books shall be opened. And prophets and apostles shall say:
7. What is this book and what is this writing? For who is there who can make a translation of them? For we have no knowledge of this writing.
8. In that day shall the Lord assemble his saints. Yea, He shall make up His jewels. And there shall be seers among you. Wherefore, despise not the work of God. For He will bring to pass a mighty work out of the hands of the weakest and most praiseless of His children. But in their weakness shall they show forth great faith, and in their diligence shall they weaken the bulwark of pride and of wickedness. Look not to the wisdom of the wise nor to the might of the mighty in that day.
9. For in that day the wise old men shall look steadfastly upon the prophets, and upon the wisdom of other old men. And they shall esteem their words more praiseworthy than the gifts of the Holy Ghost. Yea, in that day shall a man become one with the saints but receive no gift of the Holy Ghost. And it shall be better for them than for they unto whom the Lord Himself speaks. Behold, the Church shall be out of order and the kingdom of God shall grow but shall not prosper in the gifts of the Spirit.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Nate,
No, Log is not Friar Tuck. I have sat down and broken bread with Log in person. Log is wise and decent.

Friar Tuck, on the other hand, is frequently vulgar and obscene, and though he posts here completely anonymously so that no one knows who he actually is, he is for some reason obsessed with defending himself from defamation, as though other's attacks on his reputation would have any real world ramifications.

Go figure.

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Hilarious said...

Hahahaha! what a pathetic clown you are FT. Bet he lives in his parents basement. lol!!!

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Nate said...

Thanks for clarifying I was a bit confused there for a minute.

Rock,

You may consider writing an article entitled. "How do RESIGN from the LDS church in one afternoon..." It might be more beneficial and is actually more difficult than you would think...: )
You have been ex-ed by now I assume. Have you lost the spirit? Have you had any strange urges to slaughter animals and pray to satan?
From my understanding (of what the church teaches) if a omeone's name is removed they have denied the Holy Ghost and joined league with the anti-Christ. I was wondering if you could share how it feels to turn from the light to the darkness : ). Or is your name still written in the book of life?

sfort said...

Rock,

Since you now have hit the big time, it seems you have attracted many disturbers not willing to shed any light. Sorry it has come to this.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Nate,
I'm still a member, but I don't feel particularly welcome in my ward. Had a meeting with my stake president a couple of months back. He seemed to have difficulty understanding how anyone can believe in the Restoration yet not feel any need for loyalty to the corporation. Still, he didn't seem in a hurry to boot me out.

That way of thinking, which is held by a number of members these days, seems to be the result of a couple of generations of false teachings that would suggest the Church belongs to those in the hierarchy.

It seems you can't be in good standing in the Lord's church unless you first kowtow to the arm of flesh. Happily, a growing number of us are no longer captive to that way of thinking.

Anonymous said...

I was invited into a household that is fully committed to the corp. The wife, an x co-primary teacher with myself, felt comfortable enough to confront me and ask why she hadn't seen me in church lately? Now, to clarify, I have not been reg. attending church for nearly a year now, because of the adverse affect it has on me. So her just noticing was not honest. At any rate I explained myself to best I could and in the end I told her that if she wanted to have an intelligent discussion with me on my feelings that she must first read PTHG. She refused in fear that she might also no longer want to attend Sunday meetings.

In the conversation she told me that the permission of the bishop held more authority than God by the Holy Ghost.

On another occasion, while trading out bishops, the old bishop said that he would do anything the new bishop ask of him even if he knew it was wrong. These things really stick in my craw. God has no place in today's LDS religion. However, I understand their fear as I once was just like them. Their faith belongs a man who is voted in by popular vote and God has no place there.

You know something just occurred to me. All of the LDS church pres. have blood lines that lead back to Nauvoo either by birth or marriage. Isn't that how one become a king or queen of some countries? They also are revered to be somehow divine. YIKES!!!!!

At any rate, I understand they are acting in ignorance which produces fear. I no longer hold them any animosity, because I can't hold them completely responsible because they are in a state of ignorance. However, the ignorant can be dangerous in certain situations and one should be weary of casting pearls before them. One should only teach when moved upon by the Holy Ghost and not in defending themselves. Agree with your enemy while he is in the way.
Calleen

Anonymous said...

However I feel that a storm is coming and it's just around the corner.

Rock
Count yourself lucky that you are residing in California, they aren't as zealous out there as they are in and near their home court in Utah.

Calleen

Enrique said...

Callen,

I'm teaching a Gospel Doctrine lesson on Sunday on Jeremiah, the last Israelite prophet to speak for the Lord before they were all hauled off to Babylon. Not without a little irony, one of the points brought up in the lesson is that of false prophets. While my team teacher labors under the illusion that prophets will never lead us astray I'm going to explore Jeremiah chapter 23 in class which describes how the prophets lead the people into idolatry. Should be interesting. My heart goes out to you being confronted by your TMB friend. Love will prevail. Good strength to you!

Enrique said...

Calleen,

What sort of storm do you sense coming and what if anything are you doing to prepare?

Anonymous said...

Enrique

I envy your position as a teacher of adults. My husband has been called as one of the high priest teachers. He's loves bringing them to the edge and leaving them questioning. I on the other hand strongly feel to keep my mouth shut, so it's hard for me to attend.

Thank you for your encouragement and I wish you God's attendance in your efforts.

Calleen

Anonymous said...

Enrique

I live in a small mormon town in S.E. Idaho. I was prompted to instruct my R.S. pres. when she asked me a question in which I quoted Joseph Smith:

JOSEPH SMITH: We have heard men who hold the priesthood remark that they would do anything they were told to do by those who preside over them [even] if they knew it was wrong; but such obedience as this is worse than folly to us; it is slavery in the extreme; and the man who would thus willingly degrade himself, should not claim a rank among intelligent beings, until he turns from his folly. A man of God would despise the idea. Others, in the extreme exercise of their almighty authority have taught that such obedience was necessary, and that no matter what the saints were told do by their presidents they should do it without any questions. When Elders of Israel will so far indulge in these extreme notions of obedience as to teach them to the people, it is generally because they have it in their hearts to do wrong themselves.

Millennial Star, Vol 14, Number 38, pages 593-595. (Apostle Samuel Richards on Nov. 13, 1852, recorded in the Millennial Star, 14:393-395.)

Since then I've been on a watch list. These ppl don't take kindly to others that believe differently from themselves, especially if they weren't born and raised in the area.

The storm I'm talking about is what these ppl will do to persecute me because of my beliefs and what they will try to do to save my husband from his apostate wife.

My preparation is by being prayerful and relying upon the Holy Ghost to guide me. Mostly I feel to tell them to read PTHG first if they want to sit down to talk, so we can have an intelligent conversion. I can't put it any better than Denver Snuffer did in his book and since I don't believe I need to convince anyone of the truth, if my attendance is so important to them, they can read the first 5 chapters of that book before confronting me.

This is the storm and it's fast approaching.
Calleen

Enrique said...

Are you a Mormon Matters listener, Calleen? The current episode explores the stages of faith and maturation in groups and bodies like the Church™. It probably won't make Sunday any less painful for you to think of the church and it's leaders behaving like parents to us as children but I appreciated the broadening of my perception on the matter.

http://mormonmatters.org/2014/11/03/257-negotiating-adult-faith-within-a-developing-institution/

Good luck to your husband! I also teach one of the High Priest lessons in our ward. Like your husband I'm always looking for ways for us to help us fight the urge to nod off to sleep and instead consider our relationship to Jesus Christ.

Anonymous said...

Rock,

I sent you an email with my email.com account, but it seems you never got it, or perhaps you got it but haven't had time to respond to it, yet. I am sure that you receive a gazillion emails from people, so I suppose it likely got lost. Is there an easier way to contact you? Or should I just resend the email? (I'll resend it using the same account and also my hushmail.com account, anyway. To open the hushmail email, use the password: anarchy.) If you want to contact me directly (instead of leaving me a comment here), just use the LDS Anarchy Blog Contact Form found on the right hand column of every LDSA blog page. Sorry for the thread jack.

LDS Anarchist

Anonymous said...

Enrique
Thank you so much! I'll look into it and comment.

Anonymous said...

I'm listening to Mormon Matters Podcast, and my first impressions are that how can I trust in a person or persons that are caught up in their college degrees.

So far I hear no faith in God but excuses as to why things are the way they are in today's church and how blind faith should apply. Submitting your will to the will of the Father, doesn't mean it applies to earthly beings or institutions, it belongs to God. I understand why these ppl think the way they do, and that is because they don't have a personal relationship with God. So far, I'm not hearing faith in God in this podcast.

So my first question is if the church is in it's adolescents what does that say for the 90 year old men that are supposed to be running this organization. They are not infants nor adolescents. An organization is not anything other than the people who are running it, and all these stages that are being referred to are the stages of the natural man, not that of a person that has gained the appearance of God.

All I'm hearing is a bunch theorist and educators. These ppl don't have any experience with God, but have insights on the natural course of society, organizations, & cultures. Again, this has nothing to do with faith in God as a person.

66 Yea, if they will come, they may, and partake of the waters of life freely.

(that is referring to a lot of things including tithing, not holding a persons salvation for ransom, ie. temple recommends, church service etc.)

67 Behold, this is my doctrine—whosoever repenteth and cometh unto me, the same is my church.

(to me is Christ not an institution.)

68 Whosoever declareth more or less than this, the same is not of me, but is against me; therefore he is not of my church.

(again referring to all the other countless things required by the organization.)

(Doctrine and Covenants | Section 10:66 - 68)

Faithfulness rather than faith. (Please! Just follow the prophet!) Please don't leave the church, just be patient with it and it will come around. I have never read any of this in scripture. I'll tell you right now the church will never be able to satisfy everyone, although they are trying very hard too.

These guys are more interested in keeping an association with an earthly organization, rather than culturing a relationship with God. I hear nothing here of God, but to keep hanging on to a church organization that is offering nothing of God, but excuses, just because that is the right thing to do, but who says that is the right thing to do? God doesn't. I know that that is not the right thing to do, but to look to God. One that finds God, finds faith, not one that finds social acceptance finds faith.

These ppl don't have a clue about God or what He expects. Nor do I hear faith within this group of ppl. Again, I can't hold these guys responsible because not withstanding their educational status, they know nothing of God. How can anyone expect them to understand based on their lack of knowledge & understanding.

I hear a whole lot of nothing, but how can I sit in the margins and not rock the boat, however, in my experience it's the church that is expelling those that they are threatened by.

I'm sorry Enrique, but thank you for your input.

Ahuizotl said...

Calleen,

Have you ever read about the 3 Watches?

You can learn more about it here...

http://threewatches.blogspot.com/

The gentleman that wrote it lives in your neck of the woods there in ID.

It does a great job explaining the truth about what happened to the church and why we're in our current condition of faithlessness and what we should be doing based on the scriptures.

I'm not sure what you're looking for, this helped me when I was awakened to the truth about the current LDS church.

Good luck reading...

Enrique said...

No sorrow, Calleen. I'm impressed that you gave it a listen and would concur with your analysis. Have you experienced the baptism of fire? Yours is a particularly acute point of view not available from books or from man-made traditions. Surely God has a work for you. More love and good strength to you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Enrique, however, mine is not any different from others who have known God personally and yes he does have a work for me that I am doing under His careful guidance. The work He has for me involves the salvation of my husband, which has been a wonderful thing to watch, and I'm so grateful for, however, there is opposition in all things and that is to be expected.

Thank you for your patience.

Anonymous said...

BK I wanted to shout an AMEN to Christ being our rock. As I struggle with what doctrines are true, I keep coming back to it. I am okay if my I learn that something I was taught is not true, because I have learned that Jesus is my rock and Savior. I will lean on Him. All else may pass away but I still have Him!
Homeschool Mom

sad said...

I miss when Rock would chime in more on the comments.

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Alan Rock Waterman said...

Sad,
Though I'm happy to know I'm missed, I see no reason to chime in unless I have something to say. Otherwise I'm happy just to follow the discussions taking place.

Sad said...

You help it maintain it's course and have an amazing amount of knowledge for us all to profit from.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sold on polygamy and I'm not having a problem with my beliefs about it, however, as I was talking with my nephew (is has bought it hook, line,& sinker(meaning he's become one with the fundimentalist)) today, it dawned on me that, according to D&C 124, the higher priesthood was lost and because the temple was not built in the time God gave them, they did not re-aquire it. O yes and the higher priesthood was lost while Joseph was yet in Kirtland. So that being the case, how is it that they were given a higher law even a celestial law while in Nauvoo having lost that priesthood? That law being polygamy. (Ignoring the fact that the saints were moved out of their place and seemed to be cursed from that time until today, their primary goal being that of worldly approval and wealth.)

I'm not sure what Joseph was thinking with all that nonsense in the red brick building. However, I've come to understand that under Brighams rule that the history of the church and even large amounts of the D&C as well as parts of Joseph's sermons were changed to justify Brigham's desired lifestyle. So it could be that what was written about that incident never happened at all.

I also strongly feel that John Taylor, who accompanied Joseph and Hyrum to Carthage Jail, was there as a feign friend, to make sure the job got done. They tried to cover it up by saying that he took 8 balls or so, but who knows if that was true or not. Who knows, maybe he wasn't there at all. It's hard to know what's true, anyway, I believe this because of Taylors strong stance on the practice of polygamy, which now more than ever doesn't make sense. If they lost God's priesthood, God wouldn't have given the go ahead on such a, so called, important celestial law.

Even when I look back in Genisis, there was no law of Sarah. Abraham didn't receive the promise of seed until he was 90 and Sarah was 80. What I do believe is that there is a lot of Mormon Mythology that is taken for truth. There is a lot of misunderstandings going on. What is so comical about the whole thing is that the majority of the LDS membership won't check it out, but will willingly stay in the dark so they can feel comfortable in their LDS associations.

You know if you start investigating and put 2 + 2 together, it just doesn't equal 4. Anyway I'm hopeful that my nephew will come to his senses, but only time will tell.
Calleen

Anonymous said...

Rock,

I am just wondering. In your opinion, why are so many LDS members publicly questioning/leaving the church? Why now? What has changed recently to cause this? I realize there is a prophecy that this would happen, but what was the catalyst?

Ashley A

Ahuizotl said...

Ashley,

What prophecy are you referring to?

Anonymous said...

@Ashley A.

I believe the catalyst is that when a ppl who are spiritually aware, go to church to be spiritually feed, they come away unsatisfied.

That and there is the 4th generation passed away thing, from the time the saints were rejected as a church back in Nauvoo.

I believe it's like Isaiah referred to the church as a fading flower. You know most of Isaiah and the BoM is referring to the later day Mormon church. Not only the Mormon Church, but to all the churches of the world, the Mormon Church who has joined with them.

Besides, when God rejected them as a church for disobedience, what other choice did they have since there are only two choices to be made. Mammon being the other choice.

Yes there is still truth to be learned from Joseph Smith, but it's like it says in JST Matthew 1
the eagles hang around the carcass, being the dead church, picking at the bits of truth that are still there, but the LDS Church no longer teaches those truths, but excuse themselves from them. The eagles being the elect of God.

Most of the membership that I've had contact with are those who like to belong to a club or organization. They like the comrodery of those who agree with each other in their ignorance of the scriptures and the understanding of them through God. Not to mention the fear they have when someone challenges their belief with facts. They like living in a fog, but we all have our agency. I thank my Lord everyday that He aided in teaching me the truth and opening up my understanding.

I remember a lady I knew in my ward in CA. saying that she would be afraid to completely rely upon God, and that is what I come across more than not. The LDS membership are afraid and fear is the opposite of faith.
Calleen

Eric said...

In my Gospel Doctrine lesson yesterday we were exploring the prophet Jeremiah being sent to invite, warn and cajole the Israelites into returning to Yahweh before being subjugated by the Babylonians. The impending catastrophe was not the work of a vengeful God but the natural consequence of him leaving the Israelites to their own foolish devices and eventual self destruction. For generations the Israelites had been apostatizing from the top down. The kings and the prophets had a tradition of behaving badly which influenced the ordinary people to behave badly. Jeremiah chapter 23 enumerates Yahweh's charges against the prophets of adultery, stealing money from the poor, colluding with corrupt political leaders and idolatry. Harsh charges for a group claiming to be messengers of the divine.

My team teacher had stated emphatically several months ago that the prophets in the Old Testament never went astray. Aware that some in my Sunday School class don't study the scriptures and still more subconsciously buy into the glow of infallibility accorded the leadership, I approached the subject gingerly, noting that we typically think of our modern prophets as examples of righteousness, kindness and generosity. My goal was just to touch on the truth that prophets always have been and always will be mortal. In the process perhaps I could poison the well of someone's complacency.

We discussed modern false prophets such as the remarkable Jim Jones of cyanide Kool-Aid fame. One of the class members proclaimed as truth Wilford Woodruff's assertion that God would never let the prophet lead us astray. As evidence of the perils of being deceived by false prophets, this person reported on a fellow in their old stake that had been excommunicated for following the "false prophet", Denver Snuffer. That lost soul was Adrian, although he claims to have earned his expulsion from the club on his own merit, not for following Denver Snuffer. If this class member were to actually study Adrian's blog she'd find herself confused, perhaps alarmed at her belief in his error in the face of the words of life that he is sharing. May he continue sharing.

A Gospel Doctrine class is usually an unstable place to have a meaningful discussion about important matters. It's like playing tennis with hand grenades. Just when I thought I'd made my point and had sown a few seeds of doubt about some of our false traditions, our bishop stepped up to the plate and hit a home run. He observed that for the people of Jesus' time, Jesus probably would have seemed like a false prophet. He taught against the popular traditions of the Jews. He afforded the Jewish leaders none of the deference they felt they deserved. And those miracles! Surely the work of evil spirits.

And lest anyone conclude that talk of false prophets is merely the misinterpretation of Old Testament scripture, we discussed Matthew 24:23-25 in which Jesus warns us of not only false prophets in the last days but false Christs who will deceive the very elect with their miracles and wonders. No comment on whether the fifteen will somehow be able to dodge the deception of false Christs. You'd hope so. Not to leave the moment on a sour note, we concluded with D&C 45:56-57 where we are enjoined to take the Holy Spirit as our guide in wisdom.

Teaching the Old Testament this year has opened my eyes to it being as relevant and vital to us today as its warnings were in the days of Father Lehi. May we draw humbly to the spirit and be led by the will of the father and his son, Jesus Christ.

Ahuizotl said...

Anyone ever think that it might be a false Christ that's appeared to Snuffer?

Eric said...

An interesting and valid question, Ahuizotl. Both we and Snuffer would need to find clarity on the matter through the spirit. It would be interesting to know the experience of people that have been visited by false Christs.

Tammy said...

Eric,
Matt. 24:23 says,
For in those days, there shall also arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if possible, they shall deceive the very elect, who are the elect according to the covenant. JST

Tammy said...

The thing I wanted to say was that the qualifier in that scripture gets left off and it changes it. "If possible".

Ahuizotl said...

Tammy,

Do you happen to know what covenant it is that makes one "elect"? Hint, it's not the New and Everlasting Covenant.

Knowing this makes it very possible for people to be deceived.

BK said...

Ahuizotl,

Based on Denver's fruit, his actions, beliefs and teachings, I believe it was a false Christ that appeared to him, just like I believe a false Christ deceived Joseph Smith also, if he even had any visions. For if either really conversed with or was worthy of 'the true Christ' they would teach & live Christ's commandments and not things contrary to Christ.

Christ taught that the way we discern true disciples/prophets from false ones is by whether they have love & keep Christ's commandments.

No one needs to pray to find out if someone is true or not, they just have to look at their actions and what they preach & practice & compare it to what Christ said.

It is the falsest of doctrines expoused by the LDS Church (BoM) and other religions, that we prove truth by praying about things or persons to find if they are true or not. That is not the way Christ said to judge & prove things or people.

People in all religions on earth are just as certain as LDS that God has told & confirmed to them that their religion and leaders are true and right, for the Adversary is the author of confusion and gives everyone false confirmations to lead them astray. He not only can appear to us & easily deceive us as a false angel, false Christ or by false visions, but also can constantly give us false revelation and false & wonderful feelings that feel so good and right to us, insomuch that we mortals cannot tell the difference just by judging by feelings.

This was one of the greatest falsehoods started by Joseph in his Book of Mormon, for the Adversary knows how easy people fall for his false feelings.

While the real Holy Ghost works by teaching us truth, giving ideas to our mind, things we can and must go and easily prove. God knows we can't prove feelings so he doesn't work that way, but Satan does.

Christ taught that the sure way to discern truth from error & devils from Saints is by facts not feelings, actions, not warm fuzzies, watching what people do, not what we may feel about them.

But the catch is, we must have love and be living Christ's commandments ourselves in order to discern who else does or is or not, but as Christ said, few there be that do such.

We must test and prove everything, and everyone, even any ideas, confirmations or revelations or visions we think came from God, by whether they are in harmony with the teachings of Christ. If they are not in harmony, then we can know with surety they are false, no matter how wonderful we feel or how wonderful a person may seem.

But false Christ's can't fake love, real Christlike love, nor can they keep Christ's commandments, for they are too hard and require too much, and false prophets are not willing or able to do that.

There were many false prophets going around deceiving many by great power, miracles and knowledge, given to them by Satan. While Christ's apostles were also going around just humbly teaching the words of Christ.

Many would not believe Christ's true Apostles because they were not as impressive & convincing as the false ones, but the true Apostles taught that you must use 'love' as the measuring stick to discern true disciples, not knowledge, not miracles, not followers, and not any amount of warm fuzzies or grand visions of heaven or God.

The Adversary has unimaginable power to deceive everyone by all those ways, and only if we truly have love will we be able to discern his falsehoods and not be deceived.

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Tammy said...

Ahuizotl,
I do not know what the covenant is. It just seemed important to note that in the scripture referred to that not all would be deceived, else what hope is there to not be deceived.
As far as the

Tammy said...

"New and everlasting covenant" I really don't know what it is. I've heard a variety of explanations; ie. marriage, the gospel contained in the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith, Holy Ghost.
I'd like to know myself. ;)

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure whether they be false or not, however, by their fruits ye shall know them. Denver taught a lot of things that were true and were confirmed by the comforter, but he would not the first that got carried away with his fame. When they start taking themselves too seriously then trouble ensues. I was and am willing to listen to truth where ever it comes from. People need to stop wanting to follow men, even if they are prophets and start following the comforter.

I was willing to listen to Denver and will continue listening as long as I see truth, but as of lately something just isn't quite right with him, he believing he is a dispensation head. If that were true the spirit would have borne witness of it and that just isn't happening, however I'm very grateful for the truth that God gave us through him. My ears are always open, and I believe that is what was meant by the warning we were given as to not follow false Christ. Even Christ, during his ministry, relied upon the Holy Ghost to teach those that had ears to hear. He never expected them to take him at his word.

As for Joseph Smith. I know that he also brought a lot of truth to the table, but by his own admission, he told everyone that he was a man, just like them, and he had opinions, just like them, and that he only spoke as a prophet when the Holy Ghost was resting upon him. He too knew truth, but I believe he was doing the best he could under the circumstances he was under. We are not to think he was infallible either, because he wasn't and did make a lot of mistakes. A lot of those mistakes are viewed as revelations in the D&C.

People we are commanded to rely upon one source only and that is God, not his servants. We need to pray about that scripture that says whether by my mouth or the mouth of my servant it is the same, because Christ didn't even expect the ppl following him to hang on his every word. Just because a bunch of ppl say that a man is a prophet doesn't make that man a prophet, and the same goes for so called scriptures. It takes revelation to understand what is true and what isn't.

Know one said this was going to be easy. It takes a lot of study, prayer, and concentration to get to the truth.

Anonymous said...

@BK

Love you to death bro, however, the comforter isn't the fuzzies. The comforter is a teacher and reveals facts that can't always be proven except by the comforter. That's why we all need revelation to know whether a thing is true or not. With the comforter you know a thing complete with no doubt in your mind and heart at all.

BK said...

Tammy,

Our hope is in Christ, in not being deceived. If we follow his commandments and have Christlike love, we will not be deceived by false prophets and false visitations, etc., at least not for long, for we will see through the deceptions. Love reveals the truth.

We see all around us that everyone is deceived, even all the elect, the righteous, even all prophets are deceived at times and can even fall from grace, especially if you believe in Joseph Smith, who was often deceived by evil men and falsehoods.

For even the elect (the righteous) don't know all things yet and are not perfect and can even weaken and fall if they don't keep all the commandments and prove all things and stay humble and teachable to always question and rethink everything and make sure they aren't being deceived.

I've never met or heard of anyone, past or present (except Christ) that I didn't think was deceived in many ways to support evil or do wrong. I myself have been deceived in many ways growing up to support false prophets and falsehoods, but as I started studying and living Christ's teachings more I began to see through those deceptions.

I still find things I was deceived about. It is a process we all go through, hopefully in life and not wait until the next, to continually find all the ways we have been deceived and wake up and change, for we all have been deceived by many falsehoods we don't even realize yet.

But even though Christ said it would be 'few' that will awaken from their deceptions and thus find 'Eternal Life, it is still possible if we keep his commandments and have love. That is our only hope.

I like the way Joseph Smith put it, that even the humble followers of Christ (the elect) will be deceived and err, because they are the false precepts of men. But Christ's teachings can awaken us from those falsehoods if we are humble enough to admit and see them.

Log said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BK said...

Calleen,

I agree that the Comforter teaches facts to us, but we mere mortals can't discern if those facts are true or not or coming from God or Satan or our own imagination. We need something more concrete to test & judge our revelation by.

Thus we need Christ's words & example to use to compare with & test all our revelations, ideas and everything we think, to see if the ideas coming into our minds are true or not.

We can't just assume our revelation is all from God, or even most of it. We have to realize how easy it is for Satan to also teach us false things through revelation.

Having been raised in the Church myself and having had many spiritual experiences etc, I can look back now and see how I was deceived to think revelations and confirmations I thought came from God really didn't. But I never questioned them, I just assumed they all came from God.

I appreciate your testimony and confidence in the things you believe in and maybe you are completely right, but we must realize there are countless people in all religions who feel just as sure as you or I do, about their opposite beliefs, revelation and religions. We have a tendency to believe they have all been deceived but not us.

I believe we must be humble and teachable and admit that we not only can be deceived but have been in many ways and continue to be. Avoiding and waking up from deception is a lifetime process, even deception by what we think 'the Spirit' is teaching us.

For Satan deceives us most by false revelation (that we usually assume is coming from God) more then he deceives us by false prophets. For we are naturally skeptical about other people, but we tend to believe that the ideas and feelings that come into our mind & heart are true & from God, not realizing that much or most of it is most likely false and not from God.

And we must realize that false prophets teach mostly true things also, and just sneak in a few falsehoods that most don't pickup on. So of course all the leaders in the Church and people like Denver teach mostly wonderful inspiring & insightful true things, but that doesn't mean they are righteous or true prophets or disciples of Christ.

Christ warned us that false teachers and false prophets will wear 'sheep's clothing', they will look & sound just like true prophets, (saying all the right things, but not really living them) but only those who really live and understand Christ's teachings will see through them.


Log said...

I grow weary of false accusations - wherein people feign the capacity to read the minds and hearts of others. I don't care if the target of the accusation is me, the Brethren, or Denver Snuffer, or whoever.

Charity thinketh no evil - that is, it does not ascribe evil intent to others.

And charity is a possession of all who are true followers of Jesus Christ. This means that no true follower of Jesus Christ makes false accusations against others, neither will a true follower of Jesus Christ condemn, because Jesus said "condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned." (Luke 6:37)

By their fruits shall ye know them, said Christ, referring to the words of teachers falsely claiming inspiration from God (Matt 12:31-37). It is by their words, not their deeds, that false prophets are detected.

And the process of judgement is that men insert themselves into the shoes of others and say "this is what I would have felt or intended if I had done or said that." Thus whoever purports to judge another judges only themselves.

I don't understand why people come to a blog entitled "Pure Mormonism" and proceed to fling false accusations and otherwise injure the reputations of others (which, incidentally, is one of the primary meanings of "evil speaking"). I have had words with Rock on this topic, too. We don't need more accusations in the world. We don't need more accusers. We need justice. We need righteous judgement. We need deliverance from abuse and oppression.

And we, ourselves, MUST lay down our swords.

Why is it that we are not rather teaching and edifying one another in more perfectly keeping the commandments of God? If "pure Mormonism" is anything other than worshipping Christ with all our heart, might, mind, and strength, and keeping the Golden Rule whilst walking strictly according to the Spirit, then I don't know what pure Mormonism is. Yet I see that neither of the first two activities are very popular around here, as evidenced by the near constant mudslinging, decrying one set of men as prophets, acclaiming another set of men or bloggers as prophets, and throwing barbs against one another. And people seem to constantly ascribe to the Spirit their judgements of others.

Who is on Christ's side? Where are the pure Mormons?

I doubt very many of them are debating "doctrines" or declaring this or that man is or is not a true disciple of Christ. I have a suspicion the "pure Mormons" are raising families, and avoiding contention, and praying always, and serving others, and being peacemakers. I have a suspicion they don't feel a need to demonstrate their superiority to their fellow man.

I have a suspicion that they teach nothing but repentance and faith in God. (Mosiah 25:22)

I have a suspicion that they, like their Master, being full of the Spirit, go about doing good (Acts 10:38, Luke 6:40, 3 Nephi 27:27).

32 And again, the Lord God hath commanded that men should not murder; that they should not lie; that they should not steal; that they should not take the name of the Lord their God in vain; that they should not envy; that they should not have malice; that they should not contend one with another; that they should not commit whoredoms; and that they should do none of these things; for whoso doeth them shall perish.

33 For none of these iniquities come of the Lord; for he doeth that which is good among the children of men; and he doeth nothing save it be plain unto the children of men; and he inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female; and he remembereth the heathen; and all are alike unto God, both Jew and Gentile.

Robin Hood said...

Log,
You make a good point.
The Adversary is described as "an accuser of the brethren" and I would respectfully suggest that anyone who gets involved in this practice is in league with the wrong crowd.

Log said...

Robin Hood,

Matthew 25:40
Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.


Whether the target of the accusation is one of The Brethren, or one of the least of Christ's brethren, the accusation remains an accusation.

I would suggest the appropriate question is not, "how does this apply to others?" but, rather, "Lord, is it I?"

BK said...

Log & RobinHood,

False prophets don't like to be judged, so they say things like "don't accuse the Brethern" etc, while true prophets command say just the opposite, they command us to judge them & their words & actions & all people and things, to discern for ourselves whether they are good or evil, right or wrong, righteous or unrighteous.

Christ was full of charity and yet he himself was an accurser and commanded that we judge people by their actions and whether they keep his commandments and if they have love one towards another.

If we have love/charity we will use Christ's teachings to discern right from wrong in people & truth from error and devils from saints.

We can't read minds so Christ told us to watch what people do to know if they are righteous or not. For their actions reveal their hearts.

Just because someone can discern the righteous from the unrighteous doesn't mean they are unrighteous themselves.

Unless we can make righteous judgments about people then we can't help them to repent or protect ourselves & others from them and their false doctrines or deeds.

If the Brethern or anyone one else are false prophets or teaching falsehoods, then the charitable thing to do is to warn others about them, so they aren't deceived by them.

It does the Brethern or anyone no good to have everyone stand back and say nothing while they go about leading others astray to support or do evil.

The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do (or say) nothing.

'Pure Christianity' is living worthy to make righteous judgments and then being willing to warn others about the evil that other people do or teach. That is 'doing good' and what righteous people do.

The righteous know they will be judged by the same judgment they use, but that is ok & there is no way around that and that is why they are continually trying to keep Christ's commandments also as they help identify others who are struggling to do so, so they can help them.

Satan would have us judge for evil reasons, but the righteous judge out of love, with a desire to help.

Those who refuse to judge cannot identify & help those who need to repent or protect themselves & others from being led astray.

Log said...

BK,

I speak this to you directly.

You say: "We can't read minds so Christ told us to watch what people do to know if they are righteous or not. For their actions reveal their hearts."

Christ said: "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment."

Christ said:
31 ¶Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.

32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.

33 Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit.

34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.

35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.

36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.

37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.


You may of course choose a different standard of judgement than that which the Savior spoke of. All are free to do as they will.

Alma 13:20
Now I need not rehearse the matter; what I have said may suffice. Behold, the scriptures are before you; if ye will wrest them it shall be to your own destruction.


Log said...

BK:

You say: "The righteous know they will be judged by the same judgment they use, but that is ok & there is no way around that and that is why they are continually trying to keep Christ's commandments also as they help identify others who are struggling to do so, so they can help them.... Those who refuse to judge cannot identify & help those who need to repent or protect themselves & others from being led astray"

Christ said:

1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.

2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?

5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.


I'm asking, nay, pleading, for such hypocrisy, evidenced by accusation, to cease.

NOBODY - not just false prophets - likes to be accused based on appearances - therefore such judgement breaks the Golden Rule.

And it doesn't matter who one is accusing, for it is as though one had accused Christ.

Therefore, why do we (not being arrogant here, this is a real "we") not simply lay down our accusations, our insecurities, our malice and ill-will towards others, our conviction of our superiority, and truly help each other?

It doesn't matter what one believes, beyond Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God, and there is but one commandment - whatever you want others to do to you, do it to them. Therefore, why do we not cease looking outward for error and look inward instead, crying mightily unto God for the cleansing blood of Christ to be applied to our souls, that we become holy, without spot? From thence, we can see clearly to help our brothers and sisters, rather than bear down on them in accusations.

BK said...

Log,

When we isolate a few scriptures from all the rest of what Christ said then we can easy get a wrong impression of what Christ taught, but when we read all of his words and consider them together then we see his real meaning.

Christ was not saying to never judge at all, for in his other passages he commands us to make righteous judgments and judge people by whether they have love and if they keep his commandments, He just councils us to make sure we have the beam out of our own eye 1st, 'then' we will be able to see clearly how to help another.

So of course we must be careful about how we judge, for we will be judged by the same judgment. But Christ was clear that we have a responsibility to judge, especially those who would ask us to listen to or trust them, like church leaders.

Why would a Christlike person trust or follow or believe a church leader who is not following Christ?

And yes of course Christ would say that our words are important too and that we will be judged by them, but in his other teachings he also taught that we should judge others by their actions & that we will be judged by our actions also, actions are different then 'appearance'. People often judge others falsely by 'appearance', how they look, & not by what they do.

And Christ certainly knew that false prophets and unrighteous people always try to look good by saying all the right things and teach many true and wonderful things, they just don't back up their words with continual righteous action & love, which is the real proof.

Anyone can teach lots of good & true things, all false prophets do that, but only the truly righteous can prove their righteousness by their actions.

Talk is cheap and doesn't prove anything, actions speak louder than words.

I agree that we should be helping one another in love, but often the unrighteous can't see the evil they are doing, so they often need help in seeing that.

Or they know they do evil and don't care, then you have to speak up & warn others about them.

Love doesn't mean staying silent and not talking about the evil others do. Love tries to teach and wake people up to their awful situations.

BK said...

This guy explains it all better then I can.

By John Hagenbuch
From Expository Files 10.10; October, 2003

"Righteous Judgment"

Matthew 7:1-5

In our society of so called "tolerance," we are often struck with an opposition of people who cry that we have no right to judge them. In fact, I've even heard some go so far as to claim that "Jesus never judged people; He even taught that we are not to judge!" Strangely enough, they will quote Matthew 7:1 in attempts to convince others that Jesus has condemned all judging.

In the first two words of this passage, Jesus does tells us to "Judge not..." But these two words have been perverted and twisted to teach that when one calls the actions of another error and expresses that continuance in such ways will condemn the soul, that individual is judging, which is supposedly "condemned" in the Bible. But from the context of this passage, what judging is forbidden? Is it judging that makes a distinction between right and wrong? Is there never a time and place for seeing and reprimanding a fault?

If we take the view that judging is completely and totally forbidden, then that would make the doctrinal and moral purity of the church impossible to maintain. This would violate other teachings and divine examples that Christ has revealed in His word (see: Matthew 7:15; John 5:30; 7:24). It would commit us to neutrality and that is the very opposite of the stance Christ wants us to take.

What many fail to realize is that Jesus taught, (in the same context of instructing us to "judge not") that we are given the right and responsibility to make judgments in order to help our fellow man with their problem of sin, provided we have first "remove the plank from our own eye." Jesus expects you to be able to see clearly, so that you can "remove the speck from your brother's eye" (Matthew 7:5). So there are judgments to be made, within ourselves, and of others.

But then, what judging is the Lord telling us not to practice? In our text, Jesus is forbidding the judging that is for the purpose of putting down others to exalt one's self. It is the habit of finding fault in others when really there are more faults within yourself. How can you expect to help a person with a few transgressions when you are overwhelmed with sin? Jesus simply teaches that in order to pass righteous judgment on another, we ought to first examine ourselves. Let us remove the plank in our eye. Then, and only then, can we see clearly to remove the speck in our brother's eye.

BK said...

Part 2-

The teaching of Jesus in this passage is concerned with the attitude of a man, not a complete absence of our judgment. Christ is not permitting us to avoid making hard decisions or taking difficult stands. He is warning us not to have a bitter, hypercritical, faultfinding spirit. That is a haughty attitude God will not tolerate.

However, as God's children, although we must be cautious in our judgments concerning ourselves and others, we cannot ignore our Lord's commands that instruct us to make judgments. In John 7:24, Jesus said "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment" (emphasis mine: JH) Here we are clearly commanded to judge with righteous judgment.

But what does it mean to judge with righteous judgment? Jesus revealed this earlier in John 5:30: Jesus spoke, saying, "I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me."

If we seek and follow the true will of God, which can only be found in His word, then when it comes time for us to help people discern between right and wrong, then we will not judge with our opinions or what we think is right, but just like the mind that Christ had, we will only seek to do the will of the Father. Following the limitations for judgment that are taught throughout the scriptures, all we are to do in order to judge righteous judgment is to hear God's word, and judge using His standard.

How can anyone honestly say that Jesus didn't judge? For that matter, when our Lord's true followers make righteous judgments, based on His word, in order to expose sin and help the lost to be saved, why would anyone ever think that Jesus would condemn them for that? Jesus has plainly revealed that those who abide in His ways will judge with righteous judgment.

Log said...

I agree that we should be helping one another in love, but often the unrighteous can't see the evil they are doing, so they often need help in seeing that.

I think it's possible that I might have seen people like that.

Christ was not saying to never judge at all, for in his other passages he commands us to make righteous judgments and judge people by whether they have love and if they keep his commandments, He just councils us to make sure we have the beam out of our own eye 1st, 'then' we will be able to see clearly how to help another.

I have cited this verse multiple times. I find the notion that it could have been missed implausible.

John 7:24
24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.


Perhaps it would be more functional to read what I write before responding?

Log said...

How can anyone honestly say that Jesus didn't judge?

Like this.

15 Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man.

16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.

Log said...

Jesus has plainly revealed that those who abide in His ways will judge with righteous judgment.

Indeed.

And righteous judgement is explicitly not by appearances.

Hence, this.

John 7:24
24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.


And, please note, I am not disputing doctrine.

Accusation is when you make the unwarranted leap from outward appearances to inward motivation.

I find it interesting to see that people don't even notice when they're doing it, even when it is pointed out explicitly. I also find it interesting when others are blind to accusation. I've asked around - it happens when they agree with the accusation. That is, it appears that accusers are blind to accusations they agree with. It seems they cannot even imagine that reality can be different, hence their blindness.

BK said...

Log,

I read and understand all of what you said, you are not the 1st to believe they way you do.

So it seems we will just have to disagree on this.

But I believe silence in the face of evil is evil & just helps it to grow.

Anonymous said...

@ BK

You are making it harder than what it is. The one thing that the deceiver can't do is imitate the Comforter. Not all whisperings are from God it's true, and unless a person is keenly aware, they can be flattered and lead away from God. However, comfort, absolute confidence in what a person is being told and absolute understanding, accompanied by absolute love, and joy can one discern the Holy Ghost. Again, Satan can not imitate those things. Satan brings bitter feelings, feelings of insecurity and inadequacy, fear, anger, depression, feelings of wanting to force rather than trusting that God has everything under control, no matter what the situation is.

Just like one can know the false prophets from those who are true are by watching them and knowing that good fruits are of God. Other than talk, I've not seen any good fruits from Denver. As far as I've seen he has not done anything that Christ did. He arrives at his talks late as to avoid the crowd. He leaves early for the same reason. He doesn't seem to enjoy being around others that are believers. I understand why he acts the way he does, but not to those who are the humble followers of Christ, that would be a time of rejoicing.

I know ppl that are closely associated with some of Denver's friends. They are true Snufferite's if you will. They hang on every word that comes out of the guys mouth, and are doing as he has instructed and yet they can't get an audience with him. He kind of reminds me of Glen Beck and how he acts around ppl. Aloof and Annoyed at having to personally mingle with them!!!

Joseph Smith Jr. wasn't aloof. He loved ppl and wanted only the best for them. That is an attribute of Christ. That doesn't mean he wasn't flatter away from time to time. I honestly believe that he was being deceived as time went on in Nauvoo. Nauvoo wasn't a good place to be for a humble follower of Christ. I'll leave the history part up to you.

If reason is the only thing a person has to discern the truth from the lie, then that person is in big trouble. Being completely submissive to the will of God means that one is in communication with Him and know what His will is, totally understanding it from Him and then doing it no matter the consequences, trusting completely that everything is and will be the way He intends.

Another big attribute of Christ is forgiveness. Not blind forgiveness, but with an understanding of why ppl are the way they are, as being the natural man. He talks to all of them just like the sun shines on all of us, good and evil, and those who can listen and understand by the Holy Ghost will completely understand His words. Those who do not can go their way unmolested.

I have a problem with a check list of thing a person is supposed to do in order to come closer to God. I know a lot of ppl struggle with doing the things they are suppose to do and not getting the results promised. God doesn't work that way. It happens when He knows that person heart is right and not before. Only He know what He is look for. None of us can guess what that is. Waiting upon the Lord is key here.

Ok I'm rambling again. Sorry!!!!

Log said...

BK,

You are, of course, free to choose a different way.

And you are right in that I am not the first to believe the way I do - or, in other words, I am not the first to despise unrighteous judgement, nor am I the first to plead for righteous judgement.

I am, for my part, simply asking you and others to stop accusing.

I don't like being accused. I don't like it when others are accused. Nobody I know likes being accused. I have not found the person who enjoyed being accused unless it was someone under direction of God and the accusation was unjust.

You say: I believe silence in the face of evil is evil & just helps it to grow.

I don't know that I agree with that statement.

7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

I would be remiss, however, if I did not raise a warning voice to them that will either hear the voice of the Lord, or the scriptures, or one of his servants.

Please stop accusing. Please stop pretending to read minds or hearts by outward appearances. Please stop attributing evil motives to others. Please stop.

Howard Coale said...

I am not a Mormon, I'm a Quaker (yet no worries, I was amused by the line: "Oh yeah... and the moon is inhabited by people that dress like Quakers.")

I have been reading this and other blogs by Mormons recently due to a fascination with Mormonism, because I have met, know and have admired quite a few Mormons during the course of my life, and have always felt them, as individuals, to be tremendously kind and deeply admirable human beings. Yet as I read more about Mormonism (both in blogs and in the Church's literature, current and historical) I am struck by what seems a strange dichotomy between the people and the church. And I don't mean disagreement, so much as the character and personality of broad thinking, optimism & goodwill that is so common among Mormons, versus the church, which often & possibly increasingly seems to see many of those same wonderful people – people who have dedicated their lives to Mormonism – as threats to its very existence.

What's so strange to an outsider is that such life altering and destructive acts such excommunication and charges of apostasy seem to be dealt out as if they were punishment for disagreement, NOT due to demonstrated lack of faith in God or in the core teachings of the faith. For someone to be thrown out of their own religion surely must be one of the most catastrophic experiences in the life of any individual so unfortunate as to have this Medieval punishment cast upon them — as if their relationship to God depended more on the judgment of a few human beings in power rather than the individual's own relationship with God. This is how North Korea works, and the idea of spiritual exclusion dealt out by earthy beings is a very very odd and twisted approach to faith. For a Quaker, and those of many, many other faiths, it is truly shocking. The arrogance and gall of forbidding someone to worship their God in their own religion smacks of the most fundamentalist Imans in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. How is it possible that our equals – as the Bible teaches – can hinder and pass irrevocable judgment upon a person's relationship to God and religion? Not even the most conservative popes in the history of the Vatican in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries have dealt out so many excommunication per capita. Catholics are expected to disagree, and debate those disagreements in the open without fear of being made into hated pariahs. Faith, observance and behavior is what is critical. Writing blogs about differing opinions can not get you kicked out of the large majority of religions in this world... except Mormonism.

All I can say is: from an outside perspective – how did the great and deeply admirable people of Mormonism give up their right to a personal, deeply held relationship to their God, and hand it over to the autocratic judgment of a few mere human beings?

Log said...

For the Mormons in the crowd, a primer on accusation, or unjust judgement.

We can get an idea of what Laman and Lemuel and the sons of Ishmael taught their children by the traditions of their descendants.

Alma 20:10 And he also said: Whither art thou going with this Nephite, who is one of the children of a liar?

Or even more detailed:

11 Now, the Lamanites knew nothing concerning the Lord, nor the strength of the Lord, therefore they depended upon their own strength. Yet they were a strong people, as to the strength of men.

12 They were a wild, and ferocious, and a blood-thirsty people, believing in the tradition of their fathers, which is this—Believing that they were driven out of the land of Jerusalem because of the iniquities of their fathers, and that they were wronged in the wilderness by their brethren, and they were also wronged while crossing the sea;

13 And again, that they were wronged while in the land of their first inheritance, after they had crossed the sea, and all this because that Nephi was more faithful in keeping the commandments of the Lord—therefore he was favored of the Lord, for the Lord heard his prayers and answered them, and he took the lead of their journey in the wilderness.

14 And his brethren were wroth with him because they understood not the dealings of the Lord; they were also wroth with him upon the waters because they hardened their hearts against the Lord.

15 And again, they were wroth with him when they had arrived in the promised land, because they said that he had taken the ruling of the people out of their hands; and they sought to kill him.

16 And again, they were wroth with him because he departed into the wilderness as the Lord had commanded him, and took the records which were engraven on the plates of brass, for they said that he robbed them.

17 And thus they have taught their children that they should hate them, and that they should murder them, and that they should rob and plunder them, and do all they could to destroy them; therefore they have an eternal hatred towards the children of Nephi.

Log said...

Because they supposed Nephi to be evil, they justified themselves in visiting evil upon Nephi.

Indeed, they accused Nephi of all manner of evil intent.

37 And Laman said unto Lemuel and also unto the sons of Ishmael: Behold, let us slay our father, and also our brother Nephi, who has taken it upon him to be our ruler and our teacher, who are his elder brethren.

38 Now, he says that the Lord has talked with him, and also that angels have ministered unto him. But behold, we know that he lies unto us; and he tells us these things, and he worketh many things by his cunning arts, that he may deceive our eyes, thinking, perhaps, that he may lead us away into some strange wilderness; and after he has led us away, he has thought to make himself a king and a ruler over us, that he may do with us according to his will and pleasure. And after this manner did my brother Laman stir up their hearts to anger.


Yet they had Nephi completely wrong - because they judged according to appearances.

24 Rebel no more against your brother, whose views have been glorious, and who hath kept the commandments from the time that we left Jerusalem; and who hath been an instrument in the hands of God, in bringing us forth into the land of promise; for were it not for him, we must have perished with hunger in the wilderness; nevertheless, ye sought to take away his life; yea, and he hath suffered much sorrow because of you.

25 And I exceedingly fear and tremble because of you, lest he shall suffer again; for behold, ye have accused him that he sought power and authority over you; but I know that he hath not sought for power nor authority over you, but he hath sought the glory of God, and your own eternal welfare.

26 And ye have murmured because he hath been plain unto you. Ye say that he hath used sharpness; ye say that he hath been angry with you; but behold, his sharpness was the sharpness of the power of the word of God, which was in him; and that which ye call anger was the truth, according to that which is in God, which he could not restrain, manifesting boldly concerning your iniquities.

27 And it must needs be that the power of God must be with him, even unto his commanding you that ye must obey. But behold, it was not he, but it was the Spirit of the Lord which was in him, which opened his mouth to utterance that he could not shut it.


How did they get Nephi so wrong? Because they had never known God, neither the power of the Spirit, neither the love of Christ, therefore they could not imagine Nephi could have any other motivation than those things that motivated them. Therefore, they judged an innocent man after their own wickedness - what they accused Nephi of was what was in their own hearts.

Log said...

Being just - one who judges not after appearances, but judges righteously, withholding judgement until the Spirit makes the truth known - is so important, and so rare, that it is a signal characteristic of those who shall be exalted.

D&C 76:69 These are they who are just men made perfect through Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, who wrought out this perfect atonement through the shedding of his own blood.

D&C 129: 1 There are two kinds of beings in heaven, namely: Angels, who are resurrected personages, having bodies of flesh and bones—

2 For instance, Jesus said: Handle me and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.

3 Secondly: the spirits of just men made perfect, they who are not resurrected, but inherit the same glory.


I don't know how much plainly it can be said. Zion is home to the just.

47 ¶Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind:

48 Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away.

49 So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just,

50 And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

BK said...

Calleen,

I really appreciated your response and that you took the time to read my comments.

And I sincerely wish I was just making it too hard.

I agree that Satan can't completely mimic the peace, joy & love that only the Holy Spirit can bring, but I just don't believe that we mortals can always tell the difference between the real deal & Satan's counterfeit feelings of peace, love & joy & happiness etc. He can make us feel pretty darn good, for sin can feel so good for awhile too, insomuch we can think we are totally at peace and are filled with love & joy, when actually it is just Satan's counterfeit feelings.

I have personally known many people who were/are committing adultery & other very serious sins, but who act like & say they are the happiest & most at peace they have ever been. They usually feel they are so in love and they get along well with their affair partner for years or the rest of their life. The consequences & bad feelings associated with sin often don't come in this life.

And they look so convincingly in love & happy & at peace to everyone around them too. They are sure they feel 'real love' for one another, even though it's actually false love inspired by Satan.

When people lose the Spirit or worse, their conscience and become past feeling, they never realize it themselves, they usually still believe & feel they are righteous and feeling real love, peace & happiness & the Spirit. They often continue to pray, read scriptures, attend church & temple and are actually usually very nice & wonderful kind people who do lots of service for others. They fool most everyone that they are indeed righteous, especially themselves, for most people who are committing adultery don't realize it.

It's actually often near impossible to tell the righteous from the unrighteous unless we are strictly following Christ ourselves & have love.

I could go on & on with examples of people who feel wonderful and at peace while sinning, but the point is we can't always tell if the love/peace/joy we feel is the real deal or Satan's counterfeit love/peace/joy, for Satan's feels so close to the real deal. Just like false prophets look so close to real prophets. Who of us is so perfect to be able to tell where our feelings originate from? Even the best of prophets usually get deceived by false feelings & false revelations.

While I agree we may sometimes feel those negative feelings you listed from Satan, he can also inspire very wonderful uplifting feelings in us and make us feel like we are full of the Spirit.

Actually living Christ's commandments usually brings more pain and suffering in this life then sin usually does. But that's another topic.

Maybe if someone is super righteous and so in tune to true revelation from God they can get pretty good at discerning how the Spirit feels, but I have never met anyone I believe is on that level. And even if they were it's still possible they could be deceived by false feelings at times, as even prophets have been.

I believe everyone I have ever known in or out of the Church, is deceived by lots of false revelation and false feelings from the Adversary or their own mind & heart that they aren't aware of. Even myself.

I do believe that 'reason' is the best thing we have to determine truth from error. Christ taught us to prove all things and people, he meant by using facts, reason, logic, common sense & by watching what people do, not just what they say or claim, and by using the Golden Rule, for we all know right from wrong deep down. Even love is a common sense thing and can be proven to be the best solution to all problems.

And while that makes it harder, for then it's all on 'our' shoulders to discern right from wrong, we need not be in 'big trouble', for Christ taught us the way to discern all truth from error, IF we choose to live his teachings and have love.

DeeLyn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BK said...

Calleen, Continued -

And how would we know for sure it is God communicating with us and not Satan? It's nothing we can prove to ourselves or others. In fact, we can hear Satan's revelations and impressions and good feelings far easier then God's, for it's rare for us to be so in tune with God to feel his love & hear his revelations. That takes such a high level of righteous living.

And again, millions say they are communicating with and getting feelings from God too, but he tells them opposite things then what he tells us, even LDS claim opposite answers & standards from God. So who is right? God can't be telling everyone contrary things. And it's the natural man to think it's the other person who is being deceived & not us. Most religions think their church is the one true church.

And though Christ didn't tell us all things, he did give us all we need to know to achieve Eternal Life, for it's a very simple Gospel. Anything more we can learn from the Holy Spirit, which is in harmony with Christ, is just bonus.

But the bottom line is, no matter how sure we may feel, no one can know anything for sure. No one has any proof of Christ or God or even an afterlife, though I believe in them, but all we have is hope that they are true and real and that we are on the right path.

Sorry this response was so long. :)

BK said...

Log,

Christ was not silent in the face of evil, he just had already said all that needed to be said and it wouldn't matter anymore to keep talking in those last moments.

You call it 'accusing' I call it 'discerning', either way Christ commanded we judge righteously by using his teachings as the measuring stick. So I have to follow Him, not anyone who may not agree with his teachings, as most everyone didn't & do not, then & now.

I believe the words of Christ over & above the precepts of men that you have quoted.

And as I stated before, appearances are not actions, Christ said don't judge by what a person looks like, poor, sick, dirty, beautiful, talented, position, etc. but by their actions, whether they have love and keep his commandments.

Log said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Log said...

BK (Lilli, Amore Vera, et. al.),


You say: "appearances are not actions" and "Christ said don't judge by what a person looks like".

In context, actually, appearances meant exactly actions.

23 If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day?

24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.


Here, note well, Christ was discussing actions. He was being condemned on the pretext of having healed on the Sabbath, an action. Christ defended himself by pointing out other actions are also undertaken on the Sabbath, and these actions got a pass from the judgemental hypocrites.

Christ's teaching at this time was unrelated to judging someone based on how they look. He was declaring that one should not be judged by actions. And he stated elsewhere that it is by words false prophets and falsely inspired teachers are known by - it is words which reveal the heart, not actions.

BK said...

Log,

I believe that while Christ was talking about an 'action', the action was not the problem in this case. The problem was the people were judging him by using the 'law of Moses', thus they were not using 'righteous judgment', for righteous judgment can only be done by using the laws of Christ.

Actions + Christ's teachings = Righteous judgment.

And yes, I agree with Christ, if we listen to a false prophet long enough he will sooner or later give himself away by teaching things contrary to Christ, though that may take a little time, for usually most of what false teachers/prophets say will be true & wonderful inspiring things, for that is how they hook people, which can lead people to fall for them and think they are righteous for a while.

But I agree it's possible to discern someone's heart by their teachings & beliefs, but it can take longer and it's easier to be deceived by just listening to them, for some unrighteous people are very careful what they say, but they can't fake Christlike love, so that's why Christ said that love is the grand test of true disciples of Christ.

Thus it's much easier & faster to discern hearts by people's actions & if they have love.

If a person is committing adultery or not doing all they can to care for the fatherless around them, that's easier & faster to see then if they give long talks full of truth for months or years before they slip in some falsehoods.

Righteous loving people naturally keep the commandments of Christ.

But I agree, in the long run, both words & actions eventually reveal a person's true nature.

Log, I appreciate the discussion but it's clear we are not going to change each other's minds and so we will just have to disagree on these points and I think it's best if we conclude our discussion.

But thank you though, for I have learned new insights from your posts.

Minerals Liberia said...

@Howard Coale

I don't think the Church has an apostasy problem.... How many people do you think are excommunicated every year? 100, 1000, 10000 your not even close... fewer than 100. That's with a membership of over 10million

I rather enjoyed your "outside" observation of Church Member's being "broad thinking, optimism & goodwill". This is actually very kind of you, However your concept that the LDS Church shouldn't cast out those that oppose the teachings is non-scriptural Matthew 5:13 The analogy that it is ok because the catholic Church permits and are "expected to disagree, and debate those disagreements in the open" including voting on every issue within the "Church" is not doctrinal. 3 John 1:9-11

The big difference between the LDS faith and Catholics are, LDS are expected to "study it out in our mind" and pray about every thing, we don't vote on Church Doctrine.

Excommunication isn't necessary a punishment but a way back, for those who want to fight against the Church they wont come back.

If you believe that all is fine anyway with God...then nothing is harmed.

Eric said...

Howard,

Thanks for stopping by. What a delight to have a fellow traveler, a Friend and fellow disciple of Jesus Christ from a different path connect with us. Your observations have the sting of observed truth, brother. We're asking ourselves the same questions. If it is in heart, do pray for us; we surely will pray for you.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I wish I could give Howard Coale's comments a thumbs up! I have been attending other churches' worship services and researching their beliefs/theology. It's very interesting to see how their beliefs reflect on the spirit in their worship service. This has caused me to look at Mormonism(which I was raised in)more objectively. Sometimes I am gobsmacked at what I realize about Mormonism. Could you imagine trying to explain to a Baptist about hometeachers...and how they call you and bug you to let them to come over. Even when you are overwhelmed with life and they plead that they HAVE to come over so they can have their numbers for the month. I think sometimes we are so wrapped up in our own religon that we can't see the forest for the trees.
Homeschool Mom

BK said...

Howard,

That was a wonderful post, full of light & truth & much needed common sense. Would that LDS leaders were as wise as you.

While it seems most LDS are very wonderful & good people, most in the Church do seem to prefer the perks of blind obedience rather then accepting personal responsibility for their own salvation, for discerning truth from error ourselves is difficult, time consuming & risky.

It's a most enticing precept to most people that others will discern truth from error for us & be worthy to talk to God for us & that all we have to do is play follow the leader and we are assured eternal life cause they can't ever lead us astray or be wrong. Sounds too good to be true because it is.

When people are real truth seekers and true followers of Christ they automatically question and prove all things before believing anything from anyone, and thus they gradually awaken to the wrongs in the LDS Church and refuse to go along with them. Many are on this path in various stages of awakening and the internet is hastening that awakening.

I believe the Church knows this and thus false prophets always cast out those who can see through them, lest they awaken the rest of the people too.

If the church was righteous & had nothing to hide they would welcome debate and honest & open discussion & encourage their members to air their disagreements & reason together publicly and privately and prove all things and openly discuss & judge all church leader's words & actions before trusting they are true disciples of Christ.

Anonymous said...

@ BK

You know I can't disagree with you on a lot of what you said. One thing you said that I didn't feel right about is proving your communication from God to others. That is one thing that can never be done, for only by the Holy Ghost can a thing be proven. Even Christ knew that. If He could have proven Himself, he would never have been crucified, but then that would have been Satan's plan, because proving a thing takes agency away.

In your example of couples having affairs. I suspect there is a principal which you might not be aware of and that is if God puts two ppl together, there is no sin in it or anything else He may command. I'm not saying that in every case this applies, however, that is something to consider. If a couple having an affair is sneaking around then something there is not quite right. That would be a fruit of Satan. God does things out in the light of day.

As for the thing about God giving conflicting revelations, will yes He does that, and He is doing it on purpose, to see if we will trust Him. However, if a person stays faithful and trusts Him, both things come to pass at different times in different situations.

I know that Satan can counterfeit the feelings the Holy Ghost produces, however, once a person experiences the heaven opening to them and they are communing with God, Satan can't fool you for long. I've come to the conclusion that not everyone is ready for that kind of experience, and they may not be until the next time around. People try very hard to guess when the Holy Ghost is teaching them, but once the Spirit has poured out upon you, you know it with absolutely no question in your mind as to who is talking, and what is happening. Hint: God doesn't answer you in "yes" or "no" feelings. When He talks He uses words.

I've stopped beating my head on the wall trying to convince others of the things I've come to know, because unless God directs you to teach a person, you may as well save your breath. I have a saying that I like and it may sound a bit insulting, but please everyone don't take this personally. It applies to everyone sometime during their lives including myself, but this is how I feel about casting my pearls before swine (or those without understanding) and it goes like this:

You can't teach a pig to sing.
It wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Minerals Liberia said...

@BK

"If the church was righteous & had nothing to hide they would welcome debate and honest & open discussion & encourage their members to air their disagreements & reason together publicly and privately and prove all things and openly discuss & judge all church leader's words & actions before trusting they are true disciples of Christ."

I believe the church has been open and honest at least this has been my experience regarding the Church in the past 40years, especially in our Priesthood Meetings. I know it hasn't always been so....and I do believe God in his own good time has worked to reproof those who were in error and did lead away members from the truth.

Stand up oh Zion and shout from the mountain tops, proclaiming the truth in every corner.

Remember not all members are the same or should I say at the same level of understanding, faith and devotion.

Thanks to all here who give warning and to some who are just delusional. May God's peace be upon you.

Anonymous said...

The LDS membership likes to boost over 10 million. Actually it's not 10 but more like 15. However, they are cheating on the numbers. It's more like 3.5 or so million that are active. They as threatened by those who disagree with them because that small number is diminishing rapidly, and their corporation can't handle the stress of a dwindling source of money coming in.

I have a faithful LDS member associate that is a contractor and has worked a lot for the church in building, and he said just last Sunday that he knew that the LDS faith was primarily big business these days, but I'm sure he continues in the faith because somehow he still feels that, that association is somehow going to get him back to God.(traditions of his fathers.)

I've found that in most cases there are only a couple of reasons ppl stay in the church:

1. They like the association with their friends. Kind of like a garden society or a way to do business.

2. They are afraid to do anything else for fear that God won't love them anymore.

3. In some cases they know the truth and they want others to also come to the wonderful understandings they have experienced. (they usually kick those ppl out, for not blindly following the Pres.)

I've come to understand that from such you need to turn away, unless other wise directed. The there is no earthly organization that has value, and never has been. That a person's salvation is on a very personal level.

I've actually come to the point where the church has no value to me only the bits of truth that remains there. It's truth that has value, not an organization.

Eric said...

Calleen,

Such a thoughtful approach not wanting to annoy the pig! Your comment brings to mind Jeremiah 3:14-15. What if instead of millions of Mormons running around bugging each other to come over for home-and visiting teaching, the 'strange work' of the Lord entails ones and twos?

14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:

15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

BK said...

Minerals Liberia,

I'm sorry but I don't share your same beliefs about the Church. I don't think the Church has been honest at all. Not about their history & illegitimacy of their Priesthood Keys, nor the sins & falsehoods by their past leaders, nor their financial dealings & use of tithing, nor the way they disrespect (to put it mildly) women and even all members of the Church, nor have they been honest in the way they don't really live the teachings of Christ, while professing they do.

I find most members assume the church is helping the poor far more then they really are. I believe most would stop paying tithing to the Church if they really knew what the Church does with the money.

I find most members have no idea and would be shocked to know just how much money the top leaders get in salaries & perks & that we do have paid ministry.

I believe most members would be shocked & horrified if the Church spent a whole Gen. Conference admitting the real truth about Church history & it's early leaders, I doubt many would still be in the building by the end.

I believe most members would leave the church if they knew the real truth about the history and practices of the leaders and how it all works.

I'm sorry but I don't believe you realize just how bad it is.

Minerals Liberia said...

@BK

I am sure YOU know all the truth (?)and there really doesn't seem to be any fruit left on the tree (according to you), so why do you stick around? why not start your own "church" or start holding your own "gatherings"? or petition God to restore the Priesthood "Keys" to you? or for that matter write a paper about the current "atrocities" the Church has perpetrated on women.

I suppose it bothers you that the Church has set up "operational" branches which deal in the day to day physical operations of the Church for whom they are paid employees (not ecclesiastical).

How do you suppose all the Chapels were built? who purchased the land? who pays for the more than 150 missions around the world and for that matter operates and funds the church welfare system? The list goes on and on.... I have no problem paying tithing and I do so happily.


The history of the Church of Christ is a mirror into the Human condition of each dispensation. From the time of Adam until present the "Church" or organization God used to proclaim his laws and commandments has varied drastically. SO now in our day the Church as God has organized it doesn't fit your set of beliefs? So what....who cares

I suppose we should just forget about all the good things the Church has done to help people in their hour of need, both physically and spiritually. I do believe that at some point in time (future) we as humans will not need the present structure of the Church to receive instruction, council and the saving Ordinances. As we will all become as the body of Christ.

I am not running away....and neither am I not following blindly.

3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.

2 Corinthians 4:3-5

BK said...

Minerals Liberia,

Once I saw the whole picture I couldn't leave the Church fast enough.

There was & is no need to 'restore' the Church of Christ for it was never lost. It's a 'spiritual church' not a physical one, at least until Christ comes again and gathers together true followers of Christ.

As we have seen throughout history, it's next to impossible to keep a church or people or even prophets from falling into corruption. So what is important is that Christ came and taught his Gospel and it's there for anyone to study and live if they want Eternal Life.

True Priesthood is given directly from God to righteous men & women. Church leaders do not have the power to give others the Priesthood, that must be individually earned and given by God.

It's like love, no one can bless someone with love, it's something that has to be developed within each person.

There was nothing for Joseph Smith to restore for the entire & simple Gospel of Jesus Christ has been on the earth for people to learn and study since the days of Christ himself. Everyone has access to the words of Christ and thus all blessings and teachings needed to gain Eternal Life, if they will just follow Christ's teachings.

Any other doctrines & scriptures added by men like Moses, Joseph Smith or LDS leaders or leaders of other religions are just the commandments, precepts & philosophies of men, most of which are falsehoods.

And I believe the good the Church does, is outweighed by the falsehoods it teaches & the destruction is causes in the lives and families of it's members.

All false prophets & churches preach and do mostly good & wonderful things, that's how they keep the facade up & people supporting them.

And I believe that if you were one of the fatherless you would so realize that you would rather you & your children be taken care of then have a large and spacious church or temple to attend.

It is useless anyway to attend a church or temple or even to pray if we don't put the fatherless 1st and make sure there are no poor among us before we ever build one chapel or send out 1 missionary. It does no good to join or support a church that doesn't take care of the poor 1st & foremost above all else.

Christ never said to give other men or church leaders our money anyway, he said to give all our excess $ directly to the poor. For what man has ever proved himself trustworthy to use the money all for the poor and not pocket some himself (as LDS leaders do) and use most of the rest to gain power & impress the world.

Minerals Liberia said...

The time of Joseph Smith was a time of various social movements — and it’s no coincidence that he was a leader at around the same time and/or in the same region as various utopian movements, the start of spiritualism, key developments in the women’s suffrage movement, emancipation efforts and so on. I think he fancied himself as something of a social reformer more than the founder of a church per se (opinion). His platform for the brief time he was running for president is quite fascinating, and actually progressive in some ways for the times. There’s no telling what might have happened had he lived, and/or if there wasn’t the issue of polygamy to muddy the political and social waters. Clearly his life can be placed in the great hall of the "reformers" such as Martin Luther, John Calvin and John Wycliffe. However Joseph would veer from the reformers path....as God had other plans for him. Just like in Josephs time we are living in a time of the "information age". We have at our fingertips more knowledge, data, science than at any other time on earth. We humans are evolving at a much faster rate than ever, yet it almost seems like we are devolving. Look around you and ask are we that much better off than our parents (other than physical amenities).

I suppose if Noah, Moses or Abraham had lived today, and we could put a microscope on their personal lives we might not like what we saw.

Robin Hood said...

BK,
That is just too simplistic and historically inaccurate. There were, for example, many centuries when people did not have access to the scriptures. How were they going to discover the simple gospel of Christ and follow it?

And when we do access the scriptures, we find that Christ did indeed lay his hands on the Twelve and gave them authority, as also the Seventy.

Methinks you are trying to fit history to your current worldview. Might work for you on some level, but it is found seriously wanting by any objective measure.

Anonymous said...

@ Eric

Thank you for your reply, however, the children you are referring to hadn't been rejected as those who were in Nauvoo and who persist today. If you read your scriptures you will find that they were rejected as a church and were scattered. The promise given in D&C 124 was that they would not be moved out of their place if they would be obedient, but they weren't obedient in the time appointed, and the rest is history.

I believe we are talking apples and oranges here.

Robin Hood said...

Calleen Bataiff,
A question for you. Define "time appointed". I can't see a time appointment, a limit, or a date etc mentioned in the revelation. I do see the Lord draw attention to the failure at Far West and say that he understands if the saints try but are obstructed by their enemies. And he says that straight after the instruction about building the temple. Coincidence or providence?
I would point out that there is a functioning temple in Nauvoo now.

Anonymous said...

Robin Hood
If you notice the Lord talks about appointed time more than a few times. He also said talked about if they were obedient they wouldn't be moved out of the their place. If they weren't they would bring cursings upon their own heads.

The Lord didn't not say what His appointed time was specifically, but He said he would give them sufficient time before He would reject them as a church and withdrawal from them, ie. cursings by their own follies.

What then happened? They lost their prophet after about 3.5 years or so. They scrambled to finish the temple that they had neglected while Joseph was alive. It kept burning they couldn't finish it. The second story started on fire. So they rushed to finish the attic, which was never finished,they dedicated it anyway.

So let's look at the difference between the Kirkland Temple at dedication and Nauvoo Temple at dedication. Kirkland has events similar to the Pentecost. It glowed with heavenly light and there were reports of angels on and around the building. Nauvoo, nothing except light from it trying to burn to the ground. A tornado hit it and destroyed the building after they abandoned it, leaving nothing but a hole in the ground. I would say that God was the one responsible for that. It certainly wasn't a mob.

All you have to do is look at the evidence. Did it seem as if the saints that left for Salt Lake were blessed? They like to paint the picture that they were martyrs, but even as martyrs they weren't blessed. Even in Salt Lake they kept coming under attack by the US gov. They under the direction of Brigham Young were more interested in money, wealth, and powder. He used religion to control & compel the ppl. Today the leaders do the same thing.

I've mentioned this once before and I'll say it again. You can't have two masters. It's either God or money. Where are the fruits of the Spirit displayed? There are none, so they start making things up like, ie. being a good listener is a spiritual gift. Read Bednar's talk given a year or two ago. They don't have the administration of angels so they make up excuses and redefine administrating angels as missionaries. It's laughable.

I may not hang on every word that comes out of a persons mouth, however, when the evidence of facts are put before me, I won't blind myself with illusions. I've spent years reading over scriptures, only seeing what fit into my belief system. I tried to make the scripture fit that belief system, ignoring the rest. Not anymore!

I have to thank God for the things Denver Snuffer published in PTHG. Anyone with the guts to read it and not blind themselves will come to the same conclusions. He only presents facts in that book leaving out opinions. He leaves it to you to form your own opinion as a juror, based on the facts presented. I don't follow him, but I can't argue the facts.

Sorry! Once again, I'm babbling.

Anonymous said...

I'll point out some of the scriptures for you in D&C 124:

27 And with iron, with copper, and with brass, and with zinc, and with all your precious things of the earth; and build a house to my name, for the Most High to dwell therein.

28 For there is not a place found on earth that he may come to and restore again that which was lost unto you, or which he hath taken away, even the fulness of the priesthood.


31 But I command you, all ye my saints, to build a house unto me; and I grant unto you a sufficient time to build a house unto me; and during this time your baptisms shall be acceptable unto me.

32 But behold, at the end of this appointment your baptisms for your dead shall not be acceptable unto me; and if you do not these things at the end of the appointment ye shall be rejected as a church, with your dead, saith the Lord your God.

33 For verily I say unto you, that after you have had sufficient time to build a house to me, wherein the ordinance of baptizing for the dead belongeth, and for which the same was instituted from before the foundation of the world, your baptisms for your dead cannot be acceptable unto me;

34 For therein are the keys of the holy priesthood ordained, that you may receive honor and glory.


44 If ye labor with all your might, I will consecrate that spot that it shall be made holy.

45 And if my people will hearken unto my voice, and unto the voice of my servants whom I have appointed to lead my people, behold, verily I say unto you, they shall not be moved out of their place.

46 But if they will not hearken to my voice, nor unto the voice of these men whom I have appointed, they shall not be blest, because they pollute mine holy grounds, and mine holy ordinances, and charters, and my holy words which I give unto them.

47 And it shall come to pass that if you build a house unto my name, and do not do the things that I say, I will not perform the oath which I make unto you, neither fulfil the promises which ye expect at my hands, saith the Lord.

48 For instead of blessings, ye, by your own works, bring cursings, wrath, indignation, and judgments upon your own heads, by your follies, and by all your abominations, which you practice before me, saith the Lord.



49 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that when I give a commandment to any of the sons of men to do a work unto my name, and those sons of men go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work, and cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons of men, but to accept of their offerings.

They did not go with all their might to build this temple until they were being moved out of their place. Which would indicate the sufficient time was up in God's eyes.

There is so much more than this. Wouldn't it be a lot easier to just pick up PYHG and read it, and come to a conclusion for yourself?

Robin Hood said...

Calleen Bataiff,
Thank you for your response.
When the Lord gave the revelation regarding the appointed time to build the Temple, was he addressing his comments to the whole church? I believe he was. What about the saints in the British Isle? There were more saints there than there were in Nauvoo. Would a fair and just God condemn them for the poor efforts of the Nauvoo-ites? Would he require them to travel across the plains pulling handcarts? Why were they being scattered? And can the journey of the British saints to Utah really be considered as a scattering? More like a coming together in my view.

You have to look at the big picture Calleen. Many American saints I encounter in cyberspace (though not all) are very provincial in their attitudes and views.

This revelation looks quite different from this side of the pond.

Had you ever considered that?

Log said...

Robin Hood,

The Brits were reasonably accounted for in vv. 25-27, 35.

So, in a church purportedly led by modern revelation, with membership purportedly having received the Holy Ghost and thus being made holy, without spot, why are they contending amongst themselves, rather than asking, and receiving, from God the answers to their issues?

Might prevailing seem more important than truth?

Anonymous said...

@ Robin Hood,

I haven't read anything in that revelation that mentions the Brits. It is all directed at Nauvoo. The buildings, the ppl mentioned. I'll read it again and comment, however I believe at this time that you are grasping at straws.

Minerals Liberia said...

But we as humans are not perfect. We make errors. But it's how you recover from your errors that makes you who you are.

This goes for Pure Mormonism

Minerals Liberia said...

NASA reports that they found a Book of Mormon at the edge of the Universe

Actually scientist are now saying that the Universe is controlled by governing Stars in the furthest part of the milky way.

Gaybob Spongebath said...

Minerals Liberia,
I wish I knew what the heck you were talking about. It sounds interesting. But your last two comments make me feel like I just walked in at the end of a conversation between two stoners.

Unknown said...

I spent the time to read each of the comments and I must say that all one has to do is describe who and what God is, and by staring there you can be led by the Holy Spirit. LDSinc. Has transfigured God into flesh and bones! The biggest and reddest flag of them all.

The Word of God clearly defines that "servants" will return to build His house from the Foundation up, just like a real building. If only the foundation is laid and it is abandoned for a season then those who started the foundation will be Restored to complete the build, as no man can build upon another's work. Gods house was not completed in Nauvoo, neither was His Temple. Jeremiah speaks crystal clear on the Temples of the Lord in these Scattered days.

In closing, I have to admire the comments by "Log" the most! To be or become a JUST JUDGE is a very big deal! If one does not like Assumptive or Presumptive thoughts, then one should not exercise either, period. Not even against the Barking Blind Dogs that claim authority from God but in truth have only received it from man through common consent, s that are naked for the world to see and Judge according to the Word of God. When one Judges another without the Truth, Facts, Law and Evidence provided with second(verification) and third(validation) witnesses then one has erred! And one then places a debt/sin upon oneself! Self inflicted, no one to blame but ones self!?

Searching the Word is "a key" taking the Holy Spirit as your only guide is "a key" and Searching for the returning servants who are the only ones that have " The Keys " to REDEEM ZION, is all the "keys" that one needs for ones salvation, because in the end, the Pure In Heart will receive the witnesses necessary for their salvation. For the hEARt can HEARtheVoice of the Shepherd and the Shepherd knows His HEARTS!!! All hearts are known of God, period. All hearts should be yEARning for leaving Babylon willingly and sEARching for the anointed ordained servants who will Bring Again Zion and institute by proper authority the Law of Consecration as well as translate the sealed Word that will tie "All Things" together, The Power Of The Word!!! Our words are our creation, let's all use them carefully and Boldly when speaking of Jesus Christ as His Church! Let's get Caught Up in the Infinite Atonement of our Savior so that we can be Caught Up with Him when he comes as a thief to gather those who are hEARing His voice, whether by Him or His servants anointed to build His house, it is the same voice.

Lectures on Faith and D&C sec. 1 establish the foundation for one to truly understand the Book of Mormon and the Bible. D&C is the "key" to eliminate all DeCeit pertaining to our day in time when one places LoF as the preface as it was given of the Lord. The Lord can and does His own work, hence, A Marvelous Work And A Wonder is underway! Praise God Almighty! The only escape from all of mans corruption(adultery) is through the Holy One of Israel, finding the gate where He stands watch is just the begending of walking "the straight" and "the narrow" path to experiencing the fulness of Him and are eternal potential. When the right brain heart is aligned with the upright heart, then His righteousness glows of, by and through each of us toward Him. Only Love can conquer hate and poorly discerned judgement and lack of awareness. Peace.

Unknown said...

"IF" has the largest meaning in the English language, if my Aunt had balls, she would be my Uncle! IF we are truly Gods children, then let's build each other upwards in our indifference, keeping open dialogue and through great Faith(Father), greater Hope(Holy Ghost) and the greatest Charity(Christ) we can work together in repenting from all of this man made nonsense and be found worthy to be a covenant people in the REDEMPTION OF ZION! That is all that should be pumping through our hearts! How do we get out of this man made mess?! Through purification and sanctification of ones heart through the innocent blood that was delivered in sweat, piercing and death from our LOVING SAVIOR!

Know the Ledge in which you Stand to under Stand and therefore Stand upon the Rock, the Word and the Spirit! To argue is to admit fallibility, who knows all things? Blindness is a problem when love is constrained in the heart and contention is seeded! Intention = works/hearts/fruits, Contention = deception/corruption/death. So by our fruits, created words aligned with intention on Being charitable, Being Christ Like, WE SHALL KNOW THEM!!! Happiness is a choice, Love is a choice and Peace prospers from those good choices! Publishers of Peace! Preach Repentance! Search the words of ISAIAH! Love your brother equally as you love God and yourself, "IF" ye are not one in all things, then ye are not mine! Seeing Eye to Eye, I<=>I, are all commandments people! Let us keep it Christ Like, like Christ, in all things and we will prevail! It is a guarantee "IF" we do so. Peace.

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Minerals Liberia said...

Unknown

I am pretty sure you learned all that "mumbo jumbo" from your seminary teachers @ LDSinc

In all sincerity we are very much the same....just that I don't put the Church down as much as you want.

As I lay here in my bedroom in the middle of Africa listening to my favorite Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmHljOmSw6I

I cant help but wonder if a pillar of light had came down from heaven and landed on YOU.

No all things are as they seem.....

Anonymous said...

Why on earth does this matter? Is someone supposed to wait in suspended animation until Bednar gives his opinion on things? He said he wanted it, why should it matter that someone blogged before he said it.
Rebecca c

Linda said...

Dear Rock,

Some thoughts about the Lord taking out any prophet who tries to lead the church astray, as per Wilford Woodruff in his October 6, 1890 address from the pulpit.

If, as is touted as scripture by the leadership of the church today, that the Lord will not permit his prophets to lead the church astray, what reasons did God kill the modern prophets who served the shortest length of time?

Surely their lives would have been preserved if they were on the right track.

So here is the short list of the shortest length of service as presidents of the church, according to my brief research:

1. Harold B Lee and Howard W Hunter each served 1 year or less as president of the Church.
So what policies were they preaching which were against God's plan that He would kill them?

2. J.F. Smith, Jr. (1970–72) 2 years served as president of the church the next shortest length of time.

What policies did he preach which were against God's plan for his church?

3. Lorenzo Snow (1898–1901) 3 years served as president of the church.

What policies did he preach which were against God's plan for his church?

4. G.A. Smith (1945–51) 6 years served as president of the church.

What policies did he preach which were against God's plan for his church?

5. John Taylor (1880–87) 7 years served as president of the church.

What policies did he preach which were against God's plan for his church?

Thomas said...

When a court (of love) is convened and six high councilmen are assigned to defend the accused person, how much time (if any) is the accused person given to work with his/her "defense team" to build a defense before the proceedings continue?

Adrian Larsen said...

The six that are assigned to you are NOT there to defend you. They are only there to prevent "insult and injury" to you, or in other words to see that you are treated fairly, with respect, allowed to speak, etc. They will not defend you or speak on your behalf at all. In fact, they will likely join the rest of the high council in asking you questions and proving the church's case against you.

At the end they may be asked to certify that you were treated fairly and allowed to speak. This is the extent of their responsibility.

Thomas said...

Thank you Adrian for responding. I'm disappointed to hear they are not there to defend you. I have trouble reconciling how they are there to prevent insult and injury to while at the same time join the rest of the council in proving the church’s case against you. I think I would feel incredibly intimidated in that situation. I imagine you cannot have any witnesses testify in your behalf?

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Thomas,
The corruption in the process today is very similar to that in the civil courts. A public defender today rarely defends his client. He is furnished simply to make sure an innocent client's rights are not violated as he is being railroaded to jail.

Likewise, it's a formality in the Church courts to provide the impression the accused is being given a fair shake, when in reality he too is being railroaded.

These members of the high council are accustomed to following the instructions of the stake president under whom they serve. They come into a situation knowing nothing about it other than the accused must be guilty or the SP wouldn't have dragged them here to do the job.

If the SP wants a guy ex'd, (or is given orders from above to get a guy ex'ed), the guy is gonna get ex'ed.

In my book I tell the reader "you're not going to win this thing anyway." But that's not why you show up for your court. You are there to bear testimony of Christ, and be a witness against those who would unjustly commit a vile deed while claiming to act in the name of God.

I feel it's important to "stand in the gap," the way Adrian did at his hearing. Guys like him, and Bret Corbridge and Will Carter and Angel Cicero and countless others are heroes in my book.

Anonymous said...
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Thomas said...

Rock,
I read in your book that six are to be selected to take your side, and six are to take the side of “the Church”. I was taught this same thing when I was a child (I’m now 49) but I have heard very little about the details or anything since then.

Without the corruption in the process, how is it “supposed to work” (setting the CHI aside) with the six high council members selected to take your side? Are they supposed to work with you and build a defense and/or be willing to speak on your behalf? Or are they (under the correct process) there only to prevent "insult and injury"* to you? (*Referencing Adrian’s comments above). As a side note (and maybe trivial and not really looking for an answer), I’m curious how they select the six for each case. If they always assign the same six, or cast lots, or rotate, or base it on seniority.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Anonymous,
I deleted your post, but not because I found it offensive. I deleted it because you failed to provide a username, per the posted rules.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Thomas,
The best explication I know of is provided by LDS Anarchist at this site:

https://ldsanarchy.wordpress.com/2013/09/04/the-doctrine-against-dissent/

After quoting D&C 102:17, which reads:

"Those councilors who draw even numbers, that is, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12, are the individuals who are to stand up in behalf of the accused, and prevent insult and injustice."

I recommend you read the entire piece, because what I am about to quote from it below is a response to Dallin Oak's improper explanation of how the courts work today. You'll want to keep in mind that the first problem is that the courts today are improperly set, because these actions are SUPPOSED to go before an Elder's Council. We don't have those anymore, so they are conducted improperly by the stake high council, which was intended to adjudicate disputes between members, not try a member for apostasy.

Anyway, here's that excerpt:

"Now, here is where brother Dallin gets it wrong (and shame on him!, since he’s supposed to be a lawyer). The expression “to stand up in behalf of the accused” means “to stand up as an advocate of the accused.”

BEHALF, n. behaf. [See Behoof.]

1. Favor; advantage; convenience, profit; support, defense, vindication. The advocate pleads in behalf of the prisoner. The patriot suffers in behalf of his country.
2. Part; side; noting substitution, or the act of taking the part of another; as, the agent appeared in behalf of his constituents, and entered a claim.

AD’VOCATE, n. [L. advocatus, from advoco, to call for, to plead for; of ad and voco, to call. See Vocal.]

1. Advocate, in its primary sense, signifies, one who pleads the cause of another in a court of civil law. Hence,
2. One who pleads the cause of another before any tribunal or judicial court, as a barrister in the English courts. We say, a man is a learned lawyer and an able advocate.
3. One who defends, vindicates, or espouses a cause, by argument; one who is friendly to; as, an advocate for peace, or for the oppressed.

AD’VOCATE, v.t. To plead in favor of; to defend by argument, before a tribunal; to support or vindicate.

"All of that is from Webster’s 1828 Dictionary, showing that this is the very meaning of the phrase, contrary to what brother Dallin would have us believe.

"The reason why brother Dallin and the other church leaders feel the need to wrest this scripture into saying something it isn’t saying is because they have transfigured the high council into something it was never intended to be: a church court dealing with transgression and trials for church membership. So, they cannot conceive of a righteous man advocating the cause of someone who could be an unrepentant sinner, like the lawyers do. (Jesus is our advocate with the Father only if we are penitent, for the impenitent do not have Him as their advocate.) The thought of advocating impenitence, then, is understandably repulsive to them, so they simply interpret the scripture another way, to make it work according to their procedure. But the very words themselves do not fit.

"High councilors could advocate the cause of the accused because these were not meant to be matters dealing with transgression, but merely “important difficulties.” In other words, disputes over this and that private matter. In such cases, the accused may be right, or may be wrong. The high councilors who were chosen by lot to speak, could put themselves in the place of the accused, for they weren’t attempting to excuse sin, but to show a private matter from the perspective of the accused."

(End of quoted section)

Alan Rock Waterman said...

So how exactly this is supposed to work in a court that is improperly set in the first place, is anybody's guess. But it's clear that in a stake high council where the dispute is between two members of the congregation, half the council is to advocate for the plaintiff, and half for the defendant. Since the stake high council has usurped the duty of the (now nonexistent) Elder's Council, I would think that at the very least six members would be required to advocate very strongly on the side of the accused.

If this confuses you, you're not alone. But you'll understand better how it is supposed to work if you read the entire piece at the link to LDS Anarchist. He's done the homework.

Ricky Johnson said...
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John Terry said...
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Ryan Janus said...

Hi, Rock - Ryan again. This is not a comment about this post in particular, but as I read these posts and comments, I'm amassing an increasing list of materials to read. Do you have anything resembling a "top 10" list of eye-opening, mind-bending LDS books? They can be on any subject: tithing, polygamy, false prophets, whatever.

I'm a bit of a bookworm. I was also a "hard sell," going through 3.5 pairs of missionaries and hearing the discussions 2.5 times before I finally took the plunge. In the process, I read lots of material on the church. This was mostly anti-mormon material, usually supplied by my dad, who remains a hater to this day though he's never cracked open a BoM (side note: my dad was and remains my hero, one of the coolest, smartest people I know, his attitudes towards my beliefs notwithstanding). I'd love more, so where's a good place for me to start? And it's totally cool to plug your own stuff, BTW - I'll probably read that, too! If it's not something you want to make a full-blown post about, you could just email me your recommended reading list. Click on my name to head to my website, which is badly out-of-date, but still has my current email address. I'd be extremely grateful.

For what it's worth, I may never get to where I believe we're being led by unrighteous leaders. I'm certainly not there yet. But who knows? I may. I believe I was taught the church the right way from the beginning: agency always comes first, even when we disagree with our leaders. This is what I've been taught, and in my experience, this is what all my bishops and branch presidents have practiced. But I've also heard some jaw-dropping stories of unrighteous leaders, too. It may comfort you to know that the following conversation actually took place between myself and missionary team #1 at a discussion in Vienna, Austria: (or at least an approximation of this conversation; it was almost 20 years ago, after all):

Me: "So I just pray about something to know if it's true?"
Missionary: "Not just something; pray about ANYTHING."
Me: "Does that include the president of the church?"
Missionary: "Absolutely. Don't simply take his word on blind faith. Pray and ponder about what he says to confirm its truthfulness."
Me: "And what if I pray about something and receive inspiration that it's not true? Am I then not obligated to follow it?"
Missionary: "Not only are you not obligated to follow it, I'd think that you WOULD be obligated to NOT follow it."

Smart kids, those missionaries. :-)

Ryan said...

That post was getting way too long, so I broke it up. There's something else I want you to know about me. I already told you that I'm a bit of a bookworm; well, my favorite books are books I'm "not supposed to" read. I love it every time the library celebrates or has a display of formerly banned books; I immediately add them to my reading list. The first time my "Spidey senses" started tingling was shortly after joining the church, when we were handed the "Teachings of the Presidents: Brigham Young" book. I thought it was way cool that all those teachings were drawn straight from his Journal of Discourses and other sources. I thought one comment was weird, though. I don't remember the exact wording, but it said something about how that book (TotP book) was sufficient, and that it was not necessary (or they might have even said "not encouraged") to read all the original sources. Needless to say, I immediately made a mental note to acquire all those original sources and read them. I still haven't done that yet, but I am still collecting all the original sources footnoted in all the TotP books. I'm excited to read them, and I imagine I'll find more than a few surprises in there. ;-)

John Williams said...
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John Williams said...
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Gilberto Velazquez said...

I can follow the leaders incharge all they long. .do they have inperfections? Yes they are humans of flesh and bone just like us , do they have authority. And stewardship over the rest of us?yes they also have responsabolities before the lord if they get it wrong. In some. areas as all of you claim(from your own perspective. Un derstanding and knowledge) well let them but remember our duty is to follow and do as they i struct if they err weel then is not our fault is their and we are nod acountable before God for that they are,just as the soldiers in the armies God will demand from those in authority above them no directly from the soldiers . the soldiers just a ct in obedience so why you all seem to be assuming God's duty and or trying to do something hat you have not authority or power over?isee you claimi g i spiration from aGod but at the same time fighting against those called to do GOD'S work what can you tell me about the false spirits that God was suppose to se d to earth to co fuse ? And how about those spirits casted out from heaven ? I don"t see you to be aware of them . who are these under their in fluence? Think about it because richness. Is is surely very important when it comes to be called from God so compare your li es and actions with those of people in charged and decide.i mean the General authorities lives. And yours.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Gilberto,
I see several assumption in your comment above that do not appear to be upheld by the word of God.

For instance, Your claim that the leaders of the Church have authority and stewardship over us. Can you show me in the scriptures where God gave them authority and stewardship over anyone? I cannot even find any place in any revelation where God gave such stewardship to Joseph Smith.

"It is our duty to follow and do as they instruct." Again, where did God tell us that is our duty? When asked by a visitor to Nauvoo how Joseph Smith was able to govern the saints, he specifically denied that was his role. "I teach them correct principles," he said, "and they govern themselves."

And if our leaders err, you assert it is not our fault, that we must follow them anyway? Again, a scriptural citation for that assertion would be helpful.

Your position is that members of the Lord's church are mere soldiers in an army whose duty is to obey their superiors, even when they err. Yet God does not excuse soldiers when they act contrary to His word, does he?

"This is the law that I gave unto mine ancients, that they should not go out unto battle against any nation, kindred, tongue, or people, save I, the Lord, commanded them." (D&C 98:33) You'll notice it's the Lord speaking there, and you'll notice he says UNLESS I THE LORD COMMAND THEM. He doesn't say "unless one's commanding officer or political leader commands them."

You say, "I see you claiming inspiration from God but at the same time fighting against those called to do GOD'S work." Well, I don't think I claim that much inspiration from God, but I would appreciate you pointing to where I am fighting against those called to do God's work. Indeed, I do all I can to assist those doing God's word. How would you define "fighting against"?

You tell us, "I can follow the leaders in charge all day long." Yes, you can. And God will allow you the free agency to do so. He will not stand between you and your folly.

You ask, "can you tell me about the false spirits that God was supposed to send to earth to confuse ?"

I think you may be intimately familiar with those spirits, Gilberto.

Gilberto Velazquez said...

It ia clear that you do not understand. How the holyghost works by saying that prayer doesn not count well that"s precisely what. God told joseph in the grove that peoe. Drove near with their lips but denied the power of God. People counsel themselves. Trust the flesh and their minds more that their hearhs where the spirit dwells how sad.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Not sure what it is you're trying to say there, Gilberto, but you seem to be making my case.

Still waiting on those scripture citations to back up your original comments.

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FRC1952 said...

I've only read the posting and a few comments. To address the comment after someone posted their testimony. There is no caveat that this site is restricted to apostates. I consider it like the apocrypha, there are truths mixed with errors. If a person of faith is not welcome to sift for truth then the poster is obligated to announce so in an unmistakable manner. If I understand correctly three types of apostate post here. Two of them I gave a respect for.They both became disaffected with the Church, one left the Church the other fought the Church from the inside knowing that ther would be a court called. Both of these types stood up for what they came to believe. I strongly disagree with their conclusions, but as a Texan, I must respect one who fights a battle that can't be won. The third type is the apostate who stays a member yet hides their true feelings. Christ himself addressed this kind of person in
Matthew 23:27-28
27) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness.
28) Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Christ also seems to show some regard for the first two types.
Revelation 3:15-16
15) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.
16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth.
I do not understand all the nuances of these scriptures, but it seems that Christ has some regard for those who leave his fold to oppose openly.
A testimony is not an opinion. It is a statement of truths gleaned from trying to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ. When the Holy Ghost confirms the loving hand of God in your life you can confidently tell the truth of the effects of His influence with the backing of the Holy Ghost. This is not a fall back position. We have the right and responsibility to call upon the Holy Ghost to add his testimony to ours.
Just so no-one thinks that I have not had hard times with the Church I was disfellowshipped on my 22nd birthday. It was over 26 years before I was refellowshipped.

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a Talmage said...

Thank you for posting this for a wider audience. As one of the newly minted/declared Apostates I thought I was losing my mind - this total infallibility wasn't taught when I was a kid (during Spencer Kimball's Presidency but was surely coming under Ezra Taft Benson's, someone a family member prayed would be taken home before he reached the Presidency). To see my "apostasy" attached to children who will only be allowed to join the Church after they turn 18, renounce their parent(s), and seek the approval of those in Salt Lake shocked and appalled me. This post, Adrian's work, and the comments actually help to revive my faith. Again, thank you.

wade2029@gmail.com said...

amen Jared. thanks for your testimony. lots of seductive reasoning in cyber land. To answer Ryan, nowadays this stuff pretty much finds you! It was in my google now feed as I was writing a paper on the same sex marriage policy change in the church. Nice to hear your faith Jared. Hang in there. :)

wade2029@gmail.com said...

thanks Ashley. very well written.

FRC1952 said...

It seems that useless opinion i.e. testimony is valid if you agree with it. How people like I get to this site is because it does not have the basis honesty to label itself truthfully as an antimormon site. It's plainly a case of the pot calling the kettle black when y'all say that the Prophet is dishonesty when you lie yourselves. Cut out the hypocrisy and the lies and you case would seem more likely to have some validity.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

FRC1952,
You appear to have a different definition of "anti-Mormon" than I do, Randy. I am a devout believer in the gospel as restored through Joseph Smith, I embrace the Book of Mormon as literally true, and I revere Joseph Smith as a prophet. How does any of that make me anti-Mormon?

You accuse me of lying without referring to any examples. If you will point out where I have been mistaken, I will happily make the corrections. Please advise.

mormons son said...

To B.K
Difference with Joseph and the other "prophets" leaders is very simple? Josephs revelations are all documented and in canon, we all use. Joseph is quoted as saying, HE is ONLY a prophet when he is acting in his role as a prophet, not till then..In plain English when he receives a command or revelation, THEN and ONLY THEN is HE a Prophet of the Lord. At all other times he is simply a husband and father to his family.
Are we not taught that a person's standing makes NO relevance to the Lord nor to Christ? Are we not to rely upon Christ? Doesn't John 14/26 mean anything to people? or D+C 6/22-24..... Verily, verily, I say unto you, if you desire a further witness, cast your mind upon the night that you cried unto me in your heart, that you might know concerning the truth of these things...Did I not speak peace to your mind concerning the matter? What greater witness can you have than from God?..
And now, behold, you have received a witness; for if I have told you things which no man knoweth have you not received a witness?
God does NOT change nor his words and if words are changed then it is not from the Lord UNLESS revelation is given to lay aside a previous one....example...>>>

D+C 124/31 + 49-50----------->But I command you, all ye my saints, to build a house unto me; and I grant unto you a sufficient time to build a house unto me; and during this time your baptisms shall be acceptable unto me.----49 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that when I give a commandment to any of the sons of men to do a work unto my name, and those sons of men go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work, and cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons of men, but to accept of their offerings... And the iniquity and transgression of my holy laws and commandments I will visit upon the heads of those who hindered my work, unto the third and fourth generation, so long as they repent not, and hate me, saith the Lord God.

Why post this? example is the Lord has taken care of things in advance.....NOT something that will come about years after and said this is what the "prophet" said back then to me alone but in advance so the people know what to look for and expect?

To all those that read this , here is a GEM? --->And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things...And if you do not have this faith then read and ponder the scriptures as this will engage him to you, if you desire it?

There is so much here but I am content to reply to B.K in love and peace in Christ.

Nimrod said...

So...as I see it thisnis just a page of gathering for all those who feel like they have been wronged by someone and because of that should stop following the truth they have hitherto found.
Risking your salvation and then patting each other on the back for it?
Real truth doesn't seek for applause and affirmation because it doesn't need it. The church is true, whether you like it or not. Cut the thread that binds you to the prophet and start sinking.

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