Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Infallible Authority, Chapter Four

Healing the Deadly Wound
by J.J. Dewey
(To see the previous entry, click hereTo start this series at the beginning, click here.)

Interestingly, John the Revelator gives us another prophesy foretelling the temporary failure of the Latter-Day Kingdom: “And I saw another sign, in the likeness of the kingdoms of the earth; a beast rise up out of the sea, and he stood upon the sand of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns; and upon his horns ten crowns; and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion; and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed; and all the world wondered after the beast.” (Rev. 13:1-3, Inspired Version)

We do not have room here for a full commentary so we shall cover this briefly. The beast we are clearly told in the Inspired Version symbolizes the kingdoms of the world. (This might be more fully described as the false authority of the kingdoms of the world.) The sea from which the beast arose are the “peoples, and multitudes, and nations and tongues” of the earth. (See Rev. 17:15) The seven heads “are seven kings (or kingdoms); five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh he must continue a short space.” (Rev. 17:10) These seven kingdoms are also referred to as “seven mountains, on which the woman (great and abominable church) sitteth.” (Rev. 17:9) Concerning the ten horns we are told they are “ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.” (Rev. 17:12)

This beast, or the authority of the kingdoms of the world, “was like unto a leopard” symbolizing its speed in fighting against the saints. “His feet were as the feet of a bear.” This symbolizes his power to crush and wear out the saints of God. “His mouth was as the mouth of a lion.” This illustrates the power that is in the mouth of the beast. In each age it has had power to tear the Kingdom of God to pieces. The meaning of the next line is obvious: “The dragon (or the devil) gave him his power and his seat, and great authority.”

The next verse is particularly interesting: “And I saw one of his heads wounded as it were to death... .” Now the seven heads stand for seven world kingdoms in seven different ages of the world and presently the saints are under the dominion of the seventh kingdom of the beast in this seventh dispensation. John saw that “one of his heads” was wounded to death. Which head was this and how did it happen?

There has been much speculation on this verse. Some of the commentators believe the wounded head is the Roman empire which will be revived or healed. Others think it is a pope. Some think it was Nero or Hitler and that the healing will be the rise of another dictator of similar stature. But could this be so?

Verily to get the true interpretation, one must ask what power could be mighty enough to strike a deadly blow to the kingdoms of the world? We clearly see that this power that wounded the beast wounded it “to death” and if it was wounded to death, that would mean that all of the kingdoms of the entire world would fall or lose their false authority.

Would the fall of Hitler or Nero cause all the kingdoms of the world to be consumed and die forever? No. Not even the collapse of the Roman empire killed the beast. What then does have power to strike a death blow to the beast? Again the answer is in the scriptures. We are told that the Kingdom of God “shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan. 2:44)

Tell me, O ye teachers of the earth, is there anything besides the Kingdom of God which has the power to strike a deadly blow to the beast or the kingdoms of this world? Hitler could not have been the head that was wounded for he was wounded by the other kingdoms of the world and the seventh head is the kingdoms of the world at this time and it is still alive and well.

We conclude then that the deadly blow to the kingdoms of the world will not come from the kingdoms of the world, but from the Kingdom of God. When did God set up a kingdom that struck a deadly blow to the kingdoms of the world? Did he not do this when he set up the Church in 1830 and later the Council of Fifty or the actual governing kingdom in 1843?

Did the Lord not promise the saints that if they were faithful, “they shall never cease to prevail until the kingdoms of the world (the beast) are subdued under my feet.” (D&C 103:7) When else in history had the beast received such a deadly blow?

Joseph Smith recognized that the Kingdom prophesied by Daniel was not yet successfully set up for he said, “I calculate to be one of the instruments of setting up the kingdom of Daniel by the word of the Lord, and I intend to lay a foundation that will revolutionize the whole world.” (DHC 6:365) He said this just shortly before his death. Thus the kingdom was not yet successfully established, but the work of the founding prophets did give a deadly blow to the beast and would have consumed it if the saints had been faithful. But as it happened, “his deadly wound was healed.”

The church has made a number of steps backward to heal the deadly wound.

(1) Revelation, instead of being encouraged, is discouraged, and many who claim simple communion with God are excommunicated for simply having an experience with the Spirit and speaking of it.

(2) Members are controlled by rigid authority and not allowed their free agency to express views on unorthodox doctrines without fear of excommunication.

(3) The church excommunicates those who publish true historical records that conflict with established doctrines preventing members from obtaining an accurate historical perspective.

(4) The church has abandoned adhering to the article of faith concerning the literal gathering of Israel.

(5) The Church has abandoned open debate as was the custom in the early church. Debate is now called “contention.”

(6) The Church has abandoned the principles of election concerning church offices and positions as was had in the early days. A vote of election has been changed to a “sustaining vote” similar to the one-party type of vote as practiced by the Communist party.

(7) The leaders no longer present revelation to the church.

(8) “Precept must be added upon precept.” No new knowledge or precepts are being given to or by the church.

(9) The church is distancing itself from its greatest teachings. The King Follet Discourse of man becoming god is a prime example.

(10) Secrecy with money. The salaries and perks of the general authorities are hidden from the knowledge of the members.

(11) The glorification of mediocrity.

(12) Allowing the government, instead of revelation, to dictate the changing of religious doctrine in 1890.

These twelve points, among others, are the healing salve for the beast and the wound was healed and the kingdom is presently no threat to the beast, but the beast “made war with the saints and overcame them; and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues and nations.” (Rev. 13:7)

When, then, will the kingdom prophesied by Daniel succeed? In Daniel we see that the ten toes in the vision stand for ten kings in the last days, “and in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed... .” (Dan. 2:44) These ten kings were at one time thought to be the common market nations in Europe – now called the European Union.

At one time it looked like there would be ten of them but as of this writing there are 15 nations in he European Union (EU) which are: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Twelve of them recently joined together for a common currency, again bypassing the number ten.

So where does the number ten fit in?

As with many prophecies this has a dual meaning, one spiritual and one material.
The material manifestation of the ten toes are:

(1) North America, (2) Central and South America (3) The United Kingdom including Australia and New Zealand (4) Europe (5) Russia and surrounding countries (6) Africa, (7) India (8) China and Taiwan, (9) Japan and Korea, and (10) The Middle East. These, and the land masses and islands associated with them are the ten toes which rule the whole earth as indicated in the prophecy. These ten divisions are a much better correspondence to the prophecy than the European Union.

The religious world also has a correspondence to the ten toes. On the spiritual level the ten toes are: (1) The Roman Catholic Church, (2) The Eastern Orthodox Church, (3) The Protestant religions, (4) The Jews, (5) Islam, (6) Shinto, Taoist, (8) Confucian, (9) Buddhist, and (10) Hindu.

These ten religious divisions account for about 99% of the religious membership of the planet.
(Note: You can read more about this beginning at http://www.freeread.com/archives/1012.html)

The prophecy concerning the image is not completely fulfilled; thus the days of the setting up of the kingdom of Daniel in its fullness has not yet arrived but will arrive when the Church again comes out of the wilderness. This time the kingdom will not be destroyed or left to another people.

Paul said that because people do not love the truth “God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.”

What’s this? God will send delusion? That’s what it says. Paul is speaking of the last days in the period just before the end of the age. God will send delusion by allowing Satan a free reign on those who do not love the truth and desire doctrine according to their own will and not the Lord’s.

The first major delusion among the Latter-Day Saints is that the prophet cannot lead the people astray. However, there is a second and equally dangerous belief and that is that the Church cannot go astray - that is, this time it cannot fall. This “all is well” feeling is partially caused by misinterpreting Daniel: “And in the days of these kings, shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan. 2:44)

The deception here is caused by the idea that the Church and the Kingdom are one and the same, but few realize that the Church was merely a forerunner of the Kingdom and not the Kingdom itself. Long after the Church was organized Joseph often spoke of setting up the Kingdom spoken of by Daniel as a thing of the future. Few realize that the Church is merely an auxiliary of the Kingdom and a mere temporary organization as indicated by the scriptures: “For it is because of your dead works that I have caused this last covenant and this Church to be built up unto me, even as in days of old.” (D&C 22:3)

Has anyone ever stopped to think of what He would have established if our works were not dead? It would have been the kingdom.

What is the kingdom? Daniel uses the Hebrew word Malkuw which literally means “dominion.” In other words, when the Kingdom is set up, the saints will be given an actual dominion on the earth. The dominion will have a very small start, but will eventually fill the earth. Joseph Smith tried to establish this dominion with a faithful few near the end of his life by organizing the Council of Fifty. Many in the Church are not familiar with this organization, yet it did exist and its existence is fully documented by recognized LDS scholars and since there are numerous good books on the subject, I will not belabor the point by trying to substantiate that it existed.

Joseph Smith had to keep the organization of the Council of Fifty secret because he knew that the knowledge of it would excite the worst fears of his persecutors. Everyone attending was to keep the knowledge to himself, and the minutes to the meetings were even burned. At this point darkness raged more than ever and managed to obtain the life of the prophet before he was able to establish an actual dominion. However, Brigham Young tried to continue this organization and attempted to organize the state of “Deseret” as a dominion, but was unsuccessful. Thus the Kingdom yet awaits to be born.

To those who doubt this we need ask: Where do the LDS now have dominion? They do not even have dominion over their own city of Salt Lake. But the day is prophesied, “And judgment was given to the Saints of the most high and the time came that the Saints possessed the kingdom.” (Dan. 7:22)

Thus the saints, the lights of the earth whether they be LDS or another goodly people, will eventually establish a kingdom which shall have dominion from the spiritual to the physical.

Copyright J.J. Dewey, used with permission.
To continue on to chapter five, click here.

[A note from Rock about leaving comments: Many readers have posted as "Anonymous" even though they don't wish to, only because they see no other option. If you don't have a Google, Wordpress, or other username among those listed, you can enter a username in the dropdown box that reads "Name/URL."  Put your name in the "Name" box, ignore the request for a URL, and you should be good to go.

I have a pretty firm policy of never censoring or deleting comments.  If your comment does not immediately appear, it probably means it is being held in the spam filter, which seems to lock in arbitrarily on some posts for reasons I can't fathom.  If you have submitted a comment and it doesn't immediately show up, give me a nudge at RockWaterman@gmail.com and I'll knock it loose. -Rock]


Brokenbyclouds said...

I struggle with this series so far because of the inclusion of the Revelation/Daniel material. Nothing turns me off more than people trying to interpret some of the most subjective scripture available. I feel it weakens the otherwise solid material.

Jean said...

Sadly, I agree with Brokenbyclouds and go one further in saying that I have no faith in any of the words of so called scripture. Only those who want to believe that those words come from/by/through a god give them any credence at all.

They are all just men as are the LDS leaders today and since the very beginning. Lean unto thine own understanding Rock, it far surpasses that of scripture - Rock on!

Alan Rock Waterman said...

There have indeed been all manner of interpretations offered for the prophecies of Daniel, and some of them have been quite a stretch.

Still, I believe Daniel's prophecies have been given to us for a reason. We may find them difficult to grasp, and we may have been subject to some false starts, but I believe those prophecies do mean SOMETHING after all, and we would do well to give the book of Daniel some of our attention, rather than ignore it because some theories on its meaning have proven untenable.

What I find credible about Dewey's interpretation is that it seems consistent with what we see about us, not only in the world, but as it pertains to the popular misconception regarding the church vis a vis the Kingdom of God.

Further, I appreciate that Dewey does not adamantly insist that others accept his views; rather he takes the position of "let's wait and see." What dewey offers is, to quote Dave Emory, "food for thought and grounds for further research." He does not require the reader to accept his opinion and forsake all others. He puts his thoughts out there, and you can take 'em or leave 'em.

At any rate, I would hope anyone finding this chapter to be a sticking point will reserve judgment until after reading the rest of the work. There are six more chapters to go, and they are all chock full of food for thought.

Steven Lester said...

Rock, I am still waiting for the Lord (or His angel, since He is a busy guy) to show up one night in the dark and say while glowing brightly, "Rock, you're the one. Now get up, drive up to SLC and drive those bounders out of there. I'll do all the magic stuff for you ahead of time, don't worry about that. Dude, why are you still lying there? Let's get moving!"

What is He waiting for? I'm getting impatient. I am, indeed.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Sounds like a lot of work, Steven. Easier to just sit here at my desk and kick against the pricks.

Brokenbyclouds said...

I'm definitely reserving judgement (although I am for the most part on board with the message already) but I'd like to second what Steven just said. Get going sir Waterman!

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Okay, okay. I'll go up there and drive the bounders out. Just as soon as I learn how to braid a corded rope. Maybe there's a Youtube video on it.

And somebody's going to have to give me gas money.

Unknown said...

Lately, I guess for the past few weeks or so, I have reading Revelation 13 over and over almost every morning when I get before I read anything else. Finally, discovering Pure Mormonism and decide to start reading it, (instead thinking it just another apostate blog against the Church)my mind has open up with more understanding that I couldn't see before due to my own prejudices.

With Dewey thoughts of Revelation 13 and the book of Daniel gave more insights than any other commentaries I have read. Look forward of reading the rest of the chapters.

Anonymous said...

Communism and socialism (i.e. enforced sharing of resources) are the trademarks of the Beast Kingdom. Wherever you see this form of control being trumpeted by a government, you've found a government which has been or is in the process of being overtaken by the Beast Kingdom. It's not a coincidence that the Beast's color is red and that Communism's color is red. Here's an easy overview of many of them.


The United States hasn't declared itself socialist yet, but we all can see many tendencies moving us in that direction.

Pepper Davis said...

I agree with you Rock. I have always said the kingdom of God is not set up yet. This chapter makes the most sense of any hypothesis that I have read by anyone.

It actually felt like pure intelligence and now that the council of fifty Book as been released and the preamble is known, all I can say is "wow!" I have always wanted to be part of that kingdom.

I realized a few weeks ago after the presidency released the letter about cannbis, that in order to be a part of that kingdom you must value true freedom and have no desire to use compulsion upon any one

I disagree with him that BY et al have any standing with the lord as being righteous but I can see how he would also be angry with putting away the wives they took instead of making concessions that those who were married stayed married but the practice would be forbidden by anyone else and there would be no further teachings on this issue. My family was one who practiced and had to flee to Mexico. Sigh

Several years ago a brother named Ira ( aka RockDoctor) was teaching me more about the one mighty and strong. He expounded D&C 77 and wow finally that all made sense to me. Then this weekend I taught Gospel Doctrine 3N 26-30 and 4 Nephi and found an amazing little gem that I had not realized before. Not only does John the Beloved have the final Elias mission and will bring forth works but so will the 3 Nephites perform the miracles that were done in their time. It will be undeniable and if anyone does deny them they will be as the son of perdition who betrayed the lord with money. That seems more than just a coincidence that an apostle betrayal would be compared to the betrayal/denial of those in the last days regarding these four.

I am so excited to keep looking for these events. This chapter has given me a lot of excitement and now I don't feel so disgusted with the church. The lord is in control and he will bring about his mighty works. I just pray I will be part of it