Monday, January 16, 2012

Infallible Authority, Chapter Sixteen

Warnings From The Scriptures
by J.J. Dewey
(To read the previous chapter, click here. To start this series at the beginning, click here.)

In speaking of the coming forth of the writings of the Nephites (including the sealed portion) and of the day when God will remember His covenant with his people, the Lord said, “And it shall come in a day when the blood of the Saints shall cry unto the Lord, because of secret combinations and the works of darkness.” (Mormon 8:27)

Do we have secret combinations today? Verily yes, but many of the secret works which keep people in darkness are much different than the conspiracy theorists suppose. The powers of darkness do not restrain themselves to any one organization or side of the political or religious spectrum but will work undercover wherever they may find a response.

At one time they may work within the church and another time out of the church. During one generation they may concentrate on working through conservatives and another time through liberals. As soon as they are identified and their secret works revealed they will change form like the fabled shape-shifter. Paul said it well:
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
The secret works which fight against the saints do not originate with flesh and blood but from the dark places of the unseen worlds. The only way to be aware of where they are placing their attention is to keep our attention focused upon the Spirit, for the Spirit will reveal all to those willing to receive.
The scripture continues:
“Yea, it shall come in a day when the power of God shall be denied, and churches become defiled and lifted up in the pride of their hearts; yea even in a day when leaders of churches and teachers shall rise in the pride of their hearts, even unto the envying of them who belong to their churches.” (Mormon 8:28)
Members like to think that this applies to other religions only, but this situation will apply to those who have the Book of Mormon. This will be the situation preceding the days of the coming forth of the sealed plates. Why does Mormon note that the leaders will envy those who belong to the churches? It is because they “did have their goods and their substance no more common among them.” (4 Nephi 25) Therefore, many of the members of the churches today are wealthier than their leaders, causing envious thoughts in the hearts of the leaders.
“Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be heard of fires, and tempests, and vapors of smoke in foreign lands;...” (Verse 29)
This situation did not exist in the days of Joseph Smith for the fires and vapors of smoke refer to modern warfare which we shall hear of in foreign lands in the days in which the sealed plates come forth.
“And there shall also be heard of wars and earthquakes in divers places. Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be great pollutions upon the face of the earth. (Verses 30-31)
There are always wars and earthquakes, but the fact that “there shall be great pollutions upon the face of the earth” is especially timely. In this age we not only have spiritual pollution, but the physical is also a threat.
“Behold, I speak unto you as if ye [those who have the Book of Mormon] were present, and yet ye are not. But behold Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me, and I know your doing. And I know that ye do walk in the pride of your hearts; and there are none save a few only who do not lift themselves up in the pride of their hearts, unto the wearing of very fine apparel, unto envying, and strifes, and malice, and persecutions, and all manner of iniquities; and your churches, yea even every one, have become polluted because of the pride of your hearts. For behold, ye do love money, and your substance, and your fine apparel, and the adornment of your churches, more than ye love the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted. O ye pollutions, ye hypocrites, ye teachers, who sell yourselves for that which will canker, why have ye polluted the holy church of God? Why are you ashamed to take upon you the name of Christ? Why do ye not think that greater is the value of an endless happiness than the misery which never dies - because of the praise of the world?” (Mormon 8:35-38)
Let us now ask: Which church (according to the Book of Mormon) is supposed to be the “holy church of God?” Is that not the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints? Does not Mormon tell us that Jesus had shown him our doing and that the teachers [authorities] in the Church have polluted it?

Mormon ends with a sober warning: “Behold, the sword of vengeance hangeth over you; and the time soon cometh that he avengeth the blood of the saints upon you, for he will not suffer their cries any longer.” (Verse 41)

Here Mormon tells us that the saints are crying out against those who have polluted the holy church. Could it really be possible that their wrath is directed toward the seemingly righteous authorities today?

Put yourself in the shoes of the early Mormons. Suppose you were driven from Ohio to Missouri to Illinois to Utah, and then possibly to Mexico. Suppose your wife had been raped and your children exposed to the cold and hunger and uncertainty of persecution. Suppose you had been dragged through the streets by men drunk on the blood of the saints and tarred and feathered and beaten and accused. Suppose you had been at Haun’s Mill and had witnessed your children and loved ones being massacred? How would you feel? Why did these people endure such hardships?

Why?

They endured these hardships with the hope of establishing the church in its purity; which purity has now been abandoned – traded for the praise and acceptance of the world.

The early saints were persecuted because they believed in the gathering, and in the establishment of an actual kingdom with power in the hands of the saints. They were persecuted because they not only said, but they tried to live by the voice of the Spirit!

How do you suppose they feel when they look at the milktoast religion the LDS have today and see that the principles that they shed their blood for have been relinquished? What will they say to their God?

They will say, “Behold, did we suffer and die in vain only to establish a gathering which has been dispersed? A kingdom which has been voided by the precepts of men? Ordinances which have been changed and not understood? A Priesthood which has no connection with the powers of heaven? A law of consecration which has been abandoned? A freedom of spirit and a fullness of the Holy Spirit giving revelation which has been suppressed by authority? A holy church which has been polluted and a faith that has been so watered down that the weakest of the weak believe that they will obtain the glory of God with only the slightest, yea the very slightest show of faith or emotion? Did we give our lives so these people could ride to glory on the praise of the world? Did we give our lives to establish another priestcraft that is a light unto themselves while the poor in spirit yet cry daily for the waters of life that does not come?”

Is such a cry not the reason the Lord said:
“Behold, vengeance cometh speedily upon the inhabitants of the earth, a day of wrath, a day of burning, a day of desolation, of weeping, of mourning, and of lamentation; as a whirlwind it shall come upon all the face of the earth, saith the Lord. And upon my house shall it begin, and from my house shall it go forth, saith the Lord; first among those among you, saith the Lord, who have professed to know my name and have not known me, and have blasphemed against me in the midst of my house, saith the Lord.” (D&C 112:24-26)
Think not that this scripture merely applies to the lowly Elder who is not doing his home teaching, but it applies to those who profess to actually “know” the Lord. Who are the apostles and prophets in the Church that claim to have a “special witness? Did not the Lord say, “Ye that hear me not will I curse, that have professed my name, with the heaviest of cursings.” (D&C 41:1)

Has the Lord started His judgment in His own house in the past? He has. One of the best examples was in the days of Ezekiel when the house of God was out of order. The Lord asked, “Hast thou seen what the ancients [Elderly authorities] of the house of Israel do in the dark? Every man in the chambers of his imagery? For they say, the Lord seeth us not.” (Ezek. 8:12) The Lord decided that the best course to pursue was to slay them all so he called a man clothed with linen, which had the writer’s inkhorn by his side.
“And the Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.”
Then God sent destroyers through the city and the destruction began on his own house or “sanctuary.” All were killed except those who had the mark in the forehead. (See Ezek. 9:3-6)

Is anything similar prophesied in our day? Yes.

We have already covered the prophecy about judgment beginning at the Lord’s house, but are there any other similarities? Will there be those saved from the Latter-Day calamities who also have a mark in their foreheads? John prophesied of this: “And I looked and lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred and forty-four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.” (Rev. 14:1)

Just as those who were saved in ancient Israel received a mark in their foreheads, so will some be saved in modern Israel, but the mark, or the Father’s name, will probably not be physically written there. Instead, the elect will know the true name of the Father and have that name in their thoughts at all times, thus symbolically having it written in their foreheads.

Who are those who will bring the destruction in our day? Again the scriptures give the answer:
“And I say unto you, that if the Gentiles do not repent after the blessing which they shall receive, after they have scattered my people - then shall ye, who are a remnant of the house of Jacob go forth among them, and ye shall be in the midst of them who shall be many; and ye shall be among them as a lion among the beasts of the forests, and as a young lion among the flocks of sheep, who as he goeth through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver. Thy hand shall be lifted up upon thine adversaries, and all thine enemies shall be cut off. And I will gather my people together as a man gathereth his sheaves into the floor.” (3 Nephi 20:15-18)
In this same chapter the Lord says unto the Gentiles, “Nevertheless, when they shall have received the fullness of my gospel, then if they shall harden their hearts against me, I will return their iniquities upon their own heads, saith the Father.” (2 Nephi 20:28)

Some may feel that this treatise is hard on the authorities in the Church, but consider the language of the Lord in 1831: “But wo unto them that are deceivers and hypocrites, for, thus saith the Lord, I will bring them to judgment. Behold verily I say unto you, that there are hypocrites among you, who have deceived some, which has given the adversary power.” (D&C 50:6-7)

Also the following scripture was given to warn all members of the Church: “But there is a possibility that man may fall from grace and depart from the living God. Therefore let the Church take heed, and pray always lest they [the Church] fall into temptation; yea, let those who are sanctified take heed also.” (D&C 20:32-34)

Has the Church fallen into the temptation of following the easy ways of the world? Have the sanctified fallen from grace? Behold we are told: “And if it so be that the church is built upon my gospel, then will the Father show forth His own works in it.” (3 Nephi 27:10)

In the early days of the Church, the Father did show forth some of His own works with great manifestations, such as visitations and a cloud of light upon the Kirtland Temple and a great gathering of a people; but what works of the Father are now in the Church? Sure we hear of a healing now and then, but so do the Pentecostals and others. But where are the works of the Father? We are further told,
“But if it be not built upon my gospel, and is built upon the works of men, or upon the works of the devil, verily I say unto you they have joy in their works for a season, and by and by the end cometh, and they are hewn down and cast into the fire.” (3 Nephi 27:11)
We are told that the destruction of Jerusalem is a foreshadowing of our day. (See D&C 5:20. ) Therefore, we would do well to read scriptures that were directed at those people:
 “From the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely. They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace; when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: Therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord. Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.” (Jer. 6:13-16)
Is not the word of the Lord the same for us today? Does not the still small voice speak within and tell us to "ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein”? We would do well to search out the revelations and founding principles of the church, especially the principle of revelation, and walk in them.

What happened to Jerusalem after Lehi left, when those leaders would not walk in the old paths?
Can it happen to us?

Verily, our day is much more like Lehi’s than the Latter-Day Saints will dare admit. We seem to get the idea that if we lived in the days of Lehi, King Noah, or Jesus, it would have been easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys, but was it? After all, in the days of Lehi about all the righteous that we have a record of is Lehi and his family, Jeremiah, and Daniel and his friends. That’s not very many out of possible millions, is it?

In the days of evil King Noah, only Abinadi dared cry repentance and fortunately he made one convert -the dynamic Alma. Even the greatest of all, Jesus, had only 120 followers when he died. (See Acts 1:15.) Obviously deception was very subtle and it was very difficult to recognize. Would you have been one of the 120 if you had been here in the days of Jesus? It’s a sobering question.

Just imagine that you were a typical Jew in the days of Jesus. You received an unshakable testimony that Moses was a true prophet as well as Joshua and others after him. You even feel you have a witness that Israel had the keys of the kingdom. You feel that salvation can only come by following the Elders of the Church since they are the successors of Moses. Then the young upstart Jesus comes into town and begins preaching a seemingly different gospel and doing wonderful works. You wonder what the authorities will say about this and you find that they say Jesus receives his power from the devil and whoever follows him will be cast out and excommunicated. You feel that Jesus may have something, but you have received a testimony of Moses and this causes you to greatly fear excommunication for fear of losing your salvation and that of your family. Therefore, before you follow Jesus, you must make absolutely sure you are right.

Can you see why there were just 120 followers when He died? It was because of the strong influence of the authorities on the people.

We often think of the attitude of Laman and Lemuel as being odd, but actually, they were much like many members today for they said of the Jews, “And we know that the people who were in the land of Jerusalem were a righteous people; for they kept the statutes and judgments of the Lord, and all His commandments, according to the law of Moses; wherefore we know that they are a righteous people; and our father hath judged them.” (I Nephi 17:22)

Do we not have the same attitude today toward the people in the land of Utah? We believe they are a righteous people and that they keep all the teachings laid down by Joseph Smith, when in reality they do not; wherefore, the Lord has compared our people who are becoming ripened in iniquity to the people in the days of Lehi.

These are strong warnings and they are directed to the spiritual leaders with more force than the rank and file church members. We have learned from the prophet Jonah that predictions of doom do not have to take place. If thoughts and actions change, then our destiny will also change. But unfortunately, it is an eternal principle that if the salt has lost its savor it is good for nothing but to be trodden under by the foot of man.

The church must learn again to be the salt of the earth if it wishes to survive as a spiritual entity.
Copyright J.J. Dewey, used with permission.


[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,so 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 unknown.  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]

20 comments:

The Arkwelder said...

If you don't mind me saying so, the main reason the Church is in a state of apostasy (and the American empire in a state of decline) is because it has abandoned the poor, and in doing so, abandoned nearly everything Jesus stood for:

"Now this great loss of the Nephites, and the great slaughter which was among them, would not have happened had it not been for their wickedness and their abomination which was among them; yea, and it was among those also who professed to belong to the church of God. And it was because of the pride of their hearts, because of their exceeding riches, yea, it was because of their oppression to the poor, withholding their food from the hungry, withholding their clothing from the naked, and smiting their humble brethren upon the cheek...." -- Helaman 4:11-12

"And the people began to be distinguished by ranks, according to their riches and their chances for learning; yea, some were ignorant because of their poverty, and others did receive great learning because of their riches. Now the cause of this iniquity of the people was this—Satan had great power, unto the stirring up of the people to do all manner of iniquity. Now they did not sin ignorantly, for they knew the will of God concerning them, for it had been taught unto them; therefore they did wilfully rebel against God." 3 Nephi 6: 12, 15, 18

"Why do ye adorn yourselves with that which hath no life, and yet suffer the hungry, and the needy, and the naked, and the sick and the afflicted to pass by you, and notice them not? ...Behold, the sword of vengeance hangeth over you...." -- Mormon 8:39, 41

Now, we've all heard of Korihor: "...there came a man into the land of Zarahemla, and he was Anti-Christ..." Alma 30:6 And why was he "Anti-Christ?" What did he teach? That "every man fared in this life according to the management of the creature; therefore every man prospered according to his genius, and that every man conquered according to his strength...."

"Behold, here is wisdom also in me for your good. And you are to be equal, or in other words, you are to have equal claims on the properties, for the benefit of managing the concerns of your stewardships, every man according to his wants and his needs, inasmuch as his wants are just—And all this for the benefit of the church of the living God, that every man may improve upon his talent, that every man may gain other talents, yea, even an hundred fold, to be cast into the Lord’s storehouse, to become the common property of the whole church—Every man seeking the interest of his neighbor, and doing all things with an eye single to the glory of God. This order I have appointed to be an everlasting order unto you, and unto your successors, inasmuch as you sin not. And the soul that sins against this covenant, and hardeneth his heart against it, shall be dealt with according to the laws of my church, and shall be delivered over to the buffetings of Satan until the day of redemption." -- D&C 82:16-21

goingtozion said...

Rock, have you ever shared this chapter specifically with active members in person? If so, how did they react?

I have said pieces from this chapter to people, but never all at once, I guess I never had it all laid out, just shared my thoughts and a few of those scriptures. It has been pretty effective for in getting people to open up.

Brother Jim said...

This is what the Spirit has been telling me for the past 2+ years. Of all the 16 chapters of this long blog by Dewey, this one is the closest to the heart of the matter IMHO.
The sins of our generation are 1. Selfishness, 2. Pride, 3. Arrogance, 4. Unbelief (meaning false beliefs), 5. Ignorance
Dewey really nails it in this one.

TL said...

Yes, I believe the Church started to fall into apostasy in Joseph's day and became far worse after his death when BY took over, and that the latter day apostasy continues even today.

For even though the whoredom of polygamy isn't practiced anymore as it was, the Church still believes in it and preaches that it will be lived again and presently allows it in another form, usually just as vile -'serial polygamy' for men who want another wife or wives sealed to them after the deaths or divorces of previous wives.

There are also many other whoredoms, wickedness and abominations that are accepted, supported, and encouraged by most all members and leaders today, except a few who still believe in Christ and his teachings.

I believe 2 Nephi 28:11-14 describes the Church very accurately from the time BY took over the Church and then lead the people west, up to today:

They have all gone out of the way; they have become corrupted.
Because of pride and false teachers and false doctrines their churches have become corrupted.
They rob the poor because of their fine sanctuaries, and they persecute the meek and the poor in heart, because of their pride they are puffed up.
They wear stiff necks and high heads; and because of pride and wickedness and abominations and whoredoms, 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.

Even the humble today are still often deceived for a short time, by some of the wicked things taught and allowed in the Church, until the Holy Spirit wakes them up to the truth.

If we don't have the Holy Spirit to enable us to discern truth from error in everything we see, read, and hear around us or preached to us, we will easily be led astray, blinded and deceived like everyone else is today, and never know it.

Steven Lester said...

Yes, all true, I guess, but at least this year Romney will be the Republican candidate for President, and his religion isn't a factor anymore, because it is considered no longer to be any kind of a threat. You may have laughed at me when I mentioned a while ago that on the buses of Seattle are ads that show always very happy, successful, normal-looking people doing things that most people don't get to do (like driving big bikes, or surfing in big waves, or driving fast cars), all of them having perfect teeth that reflect the sunlight so happy they are. Beneath each one is the slogan "I'm a Mormon", and leaving the reader to think in return, "I could be one, too". The evangelicals don't like us, but they doth protest too much, and everyone knows that their protests are envy-driven. Romney's acceptance proves that our Church has gone to the dogs, because now the dogs like us. Satan has taken us exactly where he wants us. And what a genius he is.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Steven,
I want to add a big "Amen!" to everything you said above.

Romney is indeed no threat to the status quo. In fact it's a curiosity to me that the evangelicals find him so distasteful, since he clearly shares their penchant for war and the killing of innocents, all of which stands in stark defiance to the teachings of the religion he claims.

I'm not sure I can agree, however, that Romney is certain to end up the Republican nominee. The one pure and honest patriot on the stage, Ron Paul, is rapidly gaining support in huge and growing numbers as the rest of the candidates continue to expose themselves for the impostors they are. The next few months of primaries may end up a contest between just these two: the fake Mormon and the real American.

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Going to Zion,
In fact, I have not shared any of these chapters since I first discovered "Infallible Authority" about five years ago. As I've prepared these essays for posting in recent weeks, this is the first opportunity I've had to read them again myself, as they have been extremely hard to find in one place on the internet.

I'm once again amazed at the wisdom and clarity to be found within the pure teachings of Mormonism once the scriptures are opened up and laid before me like this.

Most of us within the church have been traveling a path that has diverted quite a bit from the true religion. For most of my life, for instance, I held the mistaken belief that "Hold to the Rod" meant clinging to the comforting words of the leaders of the Church. It does not.

The scriptures are very clear that "the Rod" is "the word of God," not the arm of flesh. Helping to make these wonderful essays available online once again is one way I have of repenting for the blind idolatry I once participated in.

Steven Lester said...

At least Ron Paul doesn't want to kill Amtrak, so that's a plus. I also fell upon this 7.5 minute commercial about Ron Paul that showed that his message has been basically the same since he was in kindergarten and that he announced the popping of the housing bubble years before it happened. Plus, Mr. Paul has been in Congress before, so he knows how to get things done, or so the film proposed. Romney hasn't I don't think.

But actually, it doesn't matter, really, who the President is; he is still the tool of the real powers that are and have been in actual control of our country, men who stand deeply in the background for whom money is merely a tool for power and who think that they know what is best for our world overall, even if that best thing requires the death of millions in payment. Eisenhower realized a little of where the real power dwelt and tried to warn the world about it, but he only saw the outermost layer. He called it the military/industrial complex. The onion's layers are far more involved than just that. And it isn't just this country, either. Romney, Paul, Obama, Bush, etc...it doesn't matter. Monson knows, though. I'm convinced of that.

A quote from a reply of the latest posting of The Stake President: Follow every word that comes from the the mouth of the Lord. Are there seeming conflicts? Then follow the living Prophet. That's what Prophets are for.

Inspire said...

TL said: "There are also many other whoredoms, wickedness and abominations ..."

IMO, the biggest whoring the Church has done is selling us out to corporate interests and the government. Of course, this happened long ago when the church was disbanded and the Corporation of the President was formed and membership for us became merely symbolic (there is only ONE sole member of the Church, the President)"

Yay for us... we have billions and billions in assets: churches, temples, property, hotels, businesses, theme parks, etc. So much money that we don't know what to do with it. A friend of mine who contracts work at the filming site in Goshen (our "new Jerusalem") told me that no expense is being spared to make things authentic. One single prop (like a piece of Roman armor or something) cost them $10k. The ad campaign Steven is talking about drains the church of millions each month. Yes, there is lip service given to how we help the poor around the world, but that is less than 5% of our net income.

Raise your hand if you would be willing to convert our lush churches and stake centers into places to help the poor. (We'd have to meet at our houses and sup with each other at an actual intimate setting and [gasp] let the Spirit dictate what was being taught, rather than teach from correlated manuals). Or to take the 4-6 billion we're spending on the SLC mall to create infrastructure for Native American reservations (many of which are like third-world countries now).

Yes, there are practicalities that we'd have to deal with. But when one's heart is filled with love and pure intent, the spirit of creativity flourishes. We could figure it out. Unfortunately, those Book of Mormon folks have us pegged, though. We care more about our fine apparel and possessions then we do helping a brother or sister down on their luck. We're going to go down in history as the people who had so much, yet did nothing with it. Because we cared more about our pimp getting us business than we did our fellow man. Sad.

Jon said...

"I beheld that the church of the Lamb, who were the saints of God, were also upon ball the face of the earth; and their dominions upon the face of the earth were small, because of the wickedness of the great whore whom I saw."

This scripture seems to imply that we will be every where at first, then their will be a gathering for those who refuse to lift their sword to fight their neighbor.

Dewey has some interesting insights. It's still hard for me to grasp that people are bad. I see them trying hard to do well. But then I see them supporting unjust wars, what then is the definition of blood lust? It is saddening.

While reading this chapter I mostly thought of, "oh my goodness, how many bad things am I doing?"

I got Grant Hardy's BoM: A Readers Edition for Christmas, I can finally get through the BoM again, now that it is in readable format. I guess I find out my wicked ways and hopefully change them.

So what makes a person wicked? I suppose willful rebellion. But I wouldn't think ignorance would, but when presented the truth and still rejecting it does that make them wicked? I don't know, just thinking out loud. I have a hard time thinking of Uchtdorf (sp) as a bad person or Monson, but I also always wonder why they haven't come out staunchly against all these wars. I guess the prophets are those who lift of their voices in warning.

TL said...

Jon,

While we can't learn everything about the Gospel in this life, I believe ignorance in large part is chosen, insomuch that the scriptures are clear that we are held accountable and lose our Exaltation for being deceived to support or do evil, even if we do it unknowingly.

We must study & pray enough to gain a solid understanding about Christ's high laws, so that we aren't deceived to break them, even if Church leaders say we can, as they often do.

Probably the greatest thing to fear in life is 'being deceived' to support other's evil or commit evil ourselves or fall for the philosophies of men & falsehoods & false prophets, even in the Church.

There are many falsehoods & evils taught, supported, accepted and even encouraged in the Church, by most all members and leaders, from the top down.

So we must live righteous enough so that we can have the Holy Spirit as our guide to really be able to question everything & everyone & receive daily personal revelation on any subject we may have a question about & always be able to discern truth from error & right from wrong & devils from saints & true prophets from false prophets, even in and especially in, the Church.

Only those who are 'deceived' become evil, because they 'unknowingly' do or support evil, while still usually feeling, thinking & looking like they are righteous.

Matthew said...

Perhaps it isn't being wicked as much as it is unintended consequences of good intentions.

100 billion dollars of assets, give or take, because of skilled business practices. Side effect - unintended emphasis of prosperity gospel....

Anonymous said...

Once upon a not very long ago, our dear leaders told us to stop calling ourselves "Mormons", and instead insist on the label "Latter-Day Saints"... and now we have these "I'm a Mormon" ads in buses and youtube videos.

It's hard to be an apostate these days. You can never tell exactly which teachings you're apostatizing from.

Mr. Andrew said...

The link to the BY quote is gone. Another website had something like that but said it was made-up. Anyone have a real source to the quote?

Alan Rock Waterman said...

Jog my memory, Andrew; what quote is that?

Anonymous said...

While Mormonism is wonderful (there have been times when I have preferred to label myself "Christian", and then I have backed away from all labels, though I still am on the membership rolls)--

I think sometimes we limit God.

(not going to get worried about whether I say Heavenly Father or Jesus Christ or even the Holy Ghost)--

Many humans like to fit God into human boundaries, and it can't be done. Joseph Smith was wonderful, and I even have a testimony that he was a prophet.

However, God works among all His children. All over the world. Many times we don't even know what He is doing. It's arrogant of people who call themselves Mormons (or other Christians) to assume that God really prefers one particular people over another. We are all His children. I said that already, I know.

How do we know He isn't working in other nations, quietly, among other people, either to bring them into the LDS church (where they will surely encounter wolves but be introduced to glorious concepts) or to other religions, even non-Christian ones.

One of the greatest blessings that comes to members of the LDS church in true purity, IF they will take advantage of it, is to go to other parts of the world and meet people of different belief systems. It can be an incredible blessing, if it is greeted with humility.

If a missionary takes his/her ethnocentricity with him/her and ties himself up in cultural baggage (I know; I know; we've all had bad MPs and APs, etc.), then the blessings are harder to receive. But the fact is that there are some righteous and pure people in the world who undoubtedly have tapped into the knowledge of light and truth, one way or another--

God hasn't given up on anyone. True, modern LDS have a lot to live up to, and many of us are failing in a big way. Warnings are not being heeded; scriptures are being unread, etc. But God (Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, AND the Holy Ghost) have a master plan that many of us may not even be able to comprehend a tiny portion of, including myself, who is writing this.

I believe that above all else. God is great, and Jesus Christ has already triumphed. So, I read my Book of Mormon, keep my mouth shut, pray as much as a mortal can--

and wait on Him.

Just offering my little thoughts.

If there is one thing that concerns me, even though I agree with MUCH of what is being written, it is this--

why do some of us focus so much on the faults of others, even if they are in "so-called" authority or in positions of leadership (THAT word is complicated and not quite "the thing")--

Yes, it's quite easy to see that things aren't as they should be. But after it's been said, why say it again? The fact is that, if these people lead others astray, they will have to answer for it. And I won't want to see it.

Have you ever seen an enemy vanquished? It's not as rewarding as some might think. It hurts to see someone who has wounded you (if you plead for Christlike compassion) suffer. It hurts.

I don't want to witness any of this, but I'm afraid I'll have to witness here and there. I want to keep my own soul as pure as possible, so that I don't have to cause someone else to suffer by witnessing against me.

againsttheclock said...

Anonymous @8:22am,

thank u. U nailed what i have discovered in my past, and my subsequent beginnings og enlightment. I was a kid bullied greatly, coming from another nation to australia, couldnt defend myself without the gift of the gab, nor or physical toughness. Eventually i had no choice but to learn to fight back hard after spending a lot of time training in kickboxing etc ad nauseam. Got into fights constantly as i was determined to take no more. BUT you can't imagine the shock it was to my system to see that i actually had hurt someone, a brother, son of my heavenly father!! I used to end up weeping with them, for them, sometimes daily for months, ashamed and sought to go back to my days when i couldnt fight back. As this realisation came, so did blessedly, the gospel of jesus into my life through the book of mormon. 15 years later i still cannot get over the feelings of the spirit i had when i prayed about the book of mormon, such a joyful exciting time! Then i joined the church and was confused why that feeling did not conyinue therein, and of course blamed it entirely on my inability to convert properly. But even after some years, and having my Enos moment where i truly began to repent finally, the feeling in the church was the same, no Spirit. The teachings seemed so far removed from joseph smith, the gosel was not of import, just a focus on the darn prophet and the rich men who held 'managerial positions'. I was in so many situation where i knew the Spirit just did not exist, and i am grateful for the discernment. Anyway, thank u- i agree so much that to even see your enemies hurt is a disgusting, painful, painful thing. As Jesus, he knows. Thats why he said to pray for them.

againsttheclock said...

Sorry for the typos above. Writing from my mobile phone!

Good Will said...

Rock: "Most of us within the church have been traveling a path that has diverted quite a bit from the true religion."

Wow. I can't believe that, after 35 years of "faithful" activity, I must confess that this is true for me, too! I, too, am in need of "repenting for the blind idolatry I once participated in."

Thank you for helping me see the light. That being said, you have made covenant to refrain from "speaking evil of the Lord's anointed". I adjure you to keep your covenant, no matter how well-intentioned or "correct" your criticisms of the Brethren may be. If you do not have proof of iniquity (adultery, stealing, bearing false witness, etc.), then you ought to hold your peace.

Do the modern Brethren "seek" their callings? (Do they "jostle" for preeminent position, as did James and John?) Are they "free" to refuse the call when it comes? (Think of Jonah.) Do they "control" revelation from God? (We may possess the "keys", but can any of us tell God what to do?)

I think you ought to be more compassionate and forgiving of those "pressed" into service. By and large, I'm sure the Brethren are doing their best (even if, sometimes, they are doing it wrong).

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