What is the Fulness of the Priesthood?

May 24, 2014

I’ve been thinking about priesthood lately.
I am currently reading an article on priesthood in the latest edition of Dialogue. Also, another blogger recently asked his readers what they think the definition of “fulness of the priesthood” is.
I think that is a really important question. One that is not easily answered in the scriptures, particularly when the term only shows up once.
I have stated before that I believe there is a really good chance that the term fulness of the priesthood is ultimately the same as fulness of the gospel.
The fulness… is the fulness..
I believe one of the few clear hints for the definition of the fulness of the Priesthood is found in section 66.
Notice how the Lord congratulates  William McLellin for receiving the “everlasting covenant” even the “fulness of the gospel”.
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1  BEHOLD, thus saith the Lord unto my servant William E. McLellin—Blessed are you, inasmuch as you have turned away from your iniquities, and have received my truths, saith the Lord your Redeemer, the Savior of the world, even of as many as believe on my name.
2  Verily I say unto you, blessed are you for receiving mine everlasting covenant, even the fulness of my gospel, sent forth unto the children of men, that they might have life and be made partakers of the glories which are to be revealed in the last days, as it was written by the prophets and apostles in days of old.
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This is the only place in the entire D&C where the Lord specifically declares that a specific person has received the fulness of the Gospel. He implies it in other places using differing terminology. Obviously Joseph Smith and others also received the fulness of the gospel, but this is the only place using “fulness of the gospel” and he links it to an “everlasting covenant”.
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What is the everlasting covenant being referred to?
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It could be the baptismal covenant which must be entered into before one can receive the Melchizedek priesthood endowment.
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I find it interesting that William McLellin had just recently been called, by the voice of God out of heaven to receive the Melchizedek priesthood in June of 1831.

Therefore, the term “everlasting covenant” may also refer to the “Oath and Covenant” associated with the highest priesthood mentioned in section 84.. (which I believe is simply the Baptismal covenant)
In one of his Nauvoo discourses, Joseph Smith spoke about the fact that there are three grand orders of priesthood.

He identified them as:
1- Levitical (Aaronic)
2- Abrahams Patriarchal Power
3- Melchizedek (who had still greater power. Even greater than a prophet, apostle or patriarch).
Section 84  speaks of these three orders of priesthood. It describes those holding the Aaronic priesthood as the “Sons of Aaron”. It describes those holding the Abrahamic Patriarchal priesthood as the “Sons of Moses”.
Both of those priesthoods are patriarchal.

In other words, they are based on what the Dialogue article refers to as patrilineal heritage.

Since patrilineal heritage is not commonly known among those of the House of Israel that have been mingled among the gentiles, Joseph Smith informed the gentile church that men must be called to the priesthood through the gift of prophecy.

In other words, a person’s rightful calling in the priesthood based on patrilineal heritage, must be identified by revelation.
The third and highest priesthood spoken of in section 84 describes the highest priesthood as the “Church of God“, the “Kingdom of God” and the “Elect of God“.

Those are simply other terms for Melchizedek priesthood and fulness of the priesthood.
It notes that one must first obtain one of the two patriarchal priesthoods of Moses and Aaron, and magnify it, before one can be “sanctified by the spirit unto the renewing of their bodies”.

This sanctification process apparently purges out any gentile blood as it infuses the candidate with the highest priesthood of the elect. (Melchizedek Priesthood- fulness of the priesthood)
There seem to be at least four very significant things that differentiate the Melchizedek priesthood from the two lesser patriarchal priesthoods
1- ORDAINED DIRECTLY BY GOD: While people are called  and ordained to offices in the Aaronic and Patriarchal priesthoods by revelation, via, other mortal priesthood holders, God himself ordains the candidate to the Melchizedek Priesthood himself (D&C 50:26) by the calling of his own voice out of heaven (Gen 14:25-29) Unlike the lesser and higher priesthoods, the highest priesthood is delivered unto men according to the voice of God the Father.
2- WITHOUT FATHER OR MOTHER: Unlike the priesthood of Moses and Aaron, the Melchizedek priesthood is not a patriarchal priesthood. It is without father and mother and without beginning of days or end of years.
3- THE OATH AND COVENANT: The two lesser orders of priesthood do not require an oath and covenant while the Melchizedek Priesthood does require an oath and covenant, as addressed in section 84. People can hold patriarchal priesthood without entering into the baptismal covenant. Not so with the Fulness of the Priesthood.
4- POSSESSOR OF ALL THINGS: Those who rise up valiantly in the Melchizedek priesthood, ultimately being both called and chosen, receive an endowment of power from on high. At some point in time they are made a possessor of all things. (D&C 50) This means that all things in heaven and earth are subject to them. It has greater power than a prophet, apostle, or patriarch in the patriarchal order of priesthood.

We see this kind of priesthood power in the lives of Enoch and Melchizedek. Interestingly, just because a person is a possessor of all things, does not necessarily mean that they will be using their power to command the elements and overcome enemies. Some people are called to endure persecution.
We are informed in the scriptures that the priesthood of Moses and the Priesthood of Aaron are both appendages of the Melchizedek priesthood and that the priesthood of Aaron is an appendage of the priesthood of Moses.
I have created a pic from paint that depicts how I currently view the three priesthoods.

 

Click on the pic to enlarge

 

 

priesthood3


Miscellaneous Musings #4

May 19, 2014

Nauvoo

I am finally back from my marathon pilgrimage to Nauvoo. I was gone for 21 days. It was a fantastic experience but I am glad to be back. Among other things, I loved-

1- searching for and finding Wayne May’s designated temple spot in the ancient city of Zarahemla,

2-discovering the ancient Lamanite burial mounds located within the Nauvoo city limits,

3- sitting and gazing at a majestic 360 year old tree hidden in the forest next to Camp Nauvoo,

4- taking in a few  faith promoting lectures by Susan Easton Black Durrant and seeing first hand how historical revisionism is created and perpetuated

5- interviewing a Community of Christ (RLDS) historian and getting his perspective on numerous things including Joseph Smith and the restoration,

6- taking in a river boat ride and dinner on the “Mark Twain” in Hannibal, MO which is only about an hour away from Nauvoo, etc., etc.

Brian C. Hales is a Closet Fundamentalist Mormon

Brian C. Hales is an anesthesiologist working at the Davis North Hospital in Layton Utah. Although he is in good standing, as a member of the LDS Church, he is also an LDS fundamentalist enthusiast wannabe.

I get the impression he can’t wait until polygamy is once again sanctioned by the church. He has been obsessed with fundamentalism his entire life and has written several books and papers about Mormon Fundamentalism and polygamy, and he maintains a website about Mormon Fundamentalism which he uses to promote his books. I think his most recent offering is “Joseph Smith’s Polygamy“.

Many years ago I came upon his website and contacted him by email. He replied, stating he was quite familiar with my work and beliefs and that he simply could not accept my conclusions and believe the way I do, yet he declined to explain why. He did not want to engage in a theological discussion, nor did he want to respond to the challenges I made to his assumptions. He, like the LDS Church, is unable to scripturally justify the practice of polygamy as a true celestial law, and he has a huge blind spot and disregard for Section 42 and 49 with regard to the monogamy mandate.

While on my journey to Nauvoo, I noticed that the MormonInterpreter published a paper by him titled

Dissenters: Portraying the Church as Wrong So They can be Right Without It

Although his primary theme was about LDS dissenters of all varieties that feel the church authorities are no longer inspired, and how they error in that belief, he spent much of the article addressing the topic with a focus on LDS fundamentalism and their rejection of current church authorities.

Although he supports the current authorities and the current ban on polygamy, he, like many Mormon males that suffer from testosterone toxicity, still appears to believe the doctrine of polygamy to be a celestial doctrine that will be practiced in heaven and most likely will return to the church again.

In my opinion, this makes him, and all of those that believe in polygamy as a true eternal, celestial law, closet fundamentalist polygamists, despite the fact that they are not currently practicing their craft.

I simply could not resist the temptation to submit a comment to his post, even though I realized that the Interpreter would probably block it.

Here is what I said:

“I believe the terms “Mormon Fundamentalist” and “Fundamentalist Mormon”, although commonly used to characterize fringe LDS polygamous groups and individuals, they incorrectly imply that these groups believe the fundamental, orthodox, and original teachings of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.

This is not the case.

For this reason, it is important to inform the reader, in an article such as this, that the term fundamentalist, is a misnomer when used the way our culture has allowed it to be used.

By not making this distinction, we may inadvertently legitimize these fringe groups in the eyes of some less informed readers, since the act of sticking to the fundamentals is a virtue in the eyes of some people.

The true foundational and fundamental teachings of the restored gospel were introduced into the restored Church by revelation, primarily between 1829 and 1834. The teachings believed by the so-called fundamentalists, were not publicly taught in the church until over a decade later.

Perhaps the quickest and easiest way for a person to document and detail these true fundamental teachings is to simply read Sections 20 and 42 of the Doctrine and Covenants. These two revelations containing the articles, ordinances and laws of the restored church were read to investigators by the early missionaries of the church. They contain the major doctrines upon which the restored church was founded.

A summary of the main beliefs might look something like this:

  • Faith
  • Repentance
  • Baptism by Water
  • Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost
  • The Baptism of Fire and the Holy Ghost
  • Offering up a broken heart and a contrite spirit
  • Obedience to the Law of the Gospel contained in the scriptures with special emphasis on the law of consecration and the law of marital monogamy

These polygamous groups don’t believe monogamy to be the fundamental, form of eternal celestial marriage despite the three foundational revelations mandating it as part of the fulness of the Gospel. (The fulness of the Gospel was clearly established on the earth long before polygamy was introduced into the church)

Additionally, these fundamentalist groups believe the highest salvation to be predicated on the acquisition of obtaining multiple wives.

When writing about these groups, I believe it is important to point out to the reader, that such doctrines as polygamy, do not represent the fundamental doctrines of Mormonism.”

As expected, my LDS apologetic friends over at the Interpreter blocked my comment and sent me an email with the following explanation:

I have not approved the comment. It appears that you are creating another definition of fundamentalist that simply moves the time frame back. Interpreter is not interested in becoming a forum for definitions that are even more restrictive than those who claim the fundamentalist label.

I had to pinch myself when I read the above comment.

I was simply moving the time frame back?

That is the whole point.

I was not picking a random time further back or a self serving point in which to move the time back based on my preference in history, I was going back to the very beginning of the church to show what the original doctrine of Christ had been, when the church was first restored. ( which, coincidentally was the exact same doctrine of Christ in the Book of Mormon)

What is wrong with showing what the original, foundational, fundamental doctrine of the church was, so that people can determine the efficacy of changing from the original doctrine and adding additional covenants and additional ordinances of salvation?

I was suggesting that the earliest possible time frame, when the gospel law was given, by revelation, represented the correct doctrine that we have been commanded to not change!

Sections 33 and 76  give a brief definition of the gospel of Christ and his simple law and doctrine and associated ordinances. The procedural explanation of how to govern the church and administer the saving ordinances in Section 42 are completely consistent with those two sections.

Additionally, here are the passages of scripture Christ gave in 3rd Nephi, which mirror the definition of Christ’s gospel and doctrine given in modern revelation, that came to mind as I read the response from the Interpreter:

31 Behold, verily, verily, I say unto you, I will declare unto you my doctrine.

32 And this is my doctrine, and it is the doctrine which the Father hath given unto me; and I bear record of the Father, and the Father beareth record of me, and the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me; and I bear record that the Father commandeth all men, everywhere, to repent and believe in me.

33 And whoso believeth in me, and is baptized, the same shall be saved; and they are they who shall inherit the kingdom of God.

34 And whoso believeth not in me, and is not baptized, shall be damned.

35 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and I bear record of it from the Father; and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also; and unto him will the Father bear record of me, for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost.

36 And thus will the Father bear record of me, and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me; for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one.

37 And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name, or ye can in nowise receive these things.

38 And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and be baptized in my name, and become as a little child, or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God.

39 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and whoso buildeth upon this buildeth upon my rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them.

40 And whoso shall declare more or less than this, and establish it for my doctrine, the same cometh of evil, and is not built upon my rock; but he buildeth upon a sandy foundation, and the gates of hell stand open to receive such when the floods come and the winds beat upon them.

41 Therefore, go forth unto this people, and declare the words which I have spoken, unto the ends of the earth.”

As you can see, nothing is stated in the above words of Christ about needing additional temple ordinances and covenants. Christ did not say that we needed some secret hand shakes or silly ritualistic robes and aprons, or secret methods of taking life and killing people. He did not say we needed to enter into covenant with Satan, to put ourselves under the power of Satan, upon stumbling in our efforts to keep God’s law, or that we needed to swear a dark secret oath by our necks, (which practice is forbidden in the NT and BofM, etc., etc.

Another passage of scripture that came to mind, which was basically reiterates the warning to not add more or less to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the saving ordinances thereof, saying the same thing as the passages in 3rd Nephi, is given in section 124:119-120. In those passages, the Lord informs the brethren that only those who believe the Book of Mormon and revelations contained in the 1835 edition of the D&C, (which contained three revelations condemning the practice of polygamy)  are worthy enough to help fund that Nauvoo House. He then warns, anything “more or less than this cometh of evil“. Does the “cometh of evil” in that passage sound familiar?

Imagine that. Anything contradicting or adding to or taking away from, the doctrine of Christas defined in the Book of Mormon and the 1835 edition of the D&C cometh of evil!

The Folks over at the Interpreter don’t want Gospel “definitions that are even more restrictive”

The simple doctrine of Christ is way to restrictive for modern Mormonism!

We need to be more liberal in our definition of the Gospel and add other covenants. We need to widen the “narrow way” with other requirements because the path and the way is just too narrow and restrictive as originally established by Christ.

Certainly the Lord was being disingenuous when providing very restrictive rules:

“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

It is really strange to me that the folks over at the Interpreter are now allowing many critical responses with contrary points of view, yet they blocked my comment which was strictly based on scripture and the point of view that we should not deviate from the fundamental doctrine of Christ that was originally given to the restored Church.

Nevertheless, I must admit, that they are becoming much more open to posting critical remarks, as long as they don’t come from me, LOL.

I have probably offended them with previous posts I have had concerning them and therefore the blocking of my comment is probably personal.

On the other hand, the comment may simply have been too close to the painful truth and too difficult to counter.

Regardless of their real motives for blocking the comment, I love how they at least give me the courtesy of contacting me to acknowledge that they got the comment, and provide an explanation for why they are blocking it, however lame it may be.

The Interpreter shows a degree of professionalism that few bloggers seem to display, when blocking comments, and I give them kudos for that.

Avraham Gileadi

While doing a random search on the Internet the other day about the Jewishness of the Latter day Saints and their religion, I came upon a notice that Avraham Gileadi would be speaking on May 17th in Idaho Falls on the following topic

May 17: “The Book of Mormon’s End-Time Scenario of Events Based on the Prophecies of Isaiah”

Gileadi played an important role in my awakening many years ago with his observation that the Marvelous Work and a Wonder was to be a future event, not something that began during Joseph Smith’s ministry.

It seems like it has been decades since I have listened to any of his lectures or read any of his books and I was curious to see if he had evolved in his beliefs and teachings over the years, so a grabbed my friend Malachi and went up to Idaho Falls to sit through six hours of his lecture.

Although there were some really good points made, and I was glad I went, overall, I was quite disappointed to find that he was, for the most part, rehashing the same themes he had been addressing when he first began lecturing and authoring books.

I was hoping he would give a chronological bullet point summary of how he thinks things will play out in the end times, but no such luck. I don’t think he knows.

I really like him and think he is a really good man and I think he was one of the first of our generation to observe and publicly teach that the Marvelous Work and a Wonder did not take place at the time of Joseph Smith, rather it is a future event. This theological concept was revolutionary at the time he came out with it. Sadly, many of the other concepts he teaches are erroneous in my opinion. It is impossible for anyone to have an accurate view of end times prophecy as long as they think the Modern Mormon Church represents the true, restored church with all of the priesthood that was originally restored, that will (or did) usher in the dispensation of the fulness of times, etc.

I was surprised to find that he is again quite outspoken about the current state of the church. He, like his old friend Hugh Nibley, before passing away, is caught in the cognitive dissonance of harping on all of the problems with the church while still claiming it is the Lord’s true church.

I guess it has become obvious to him that the criticisms and teachings he got in trouble for the first time around are no longer going to get him in trouble. People like Denver Snuffer who has been excommunicated, and John Dehlin who hasn’t been excommunicated, have really raised the bar of tolerance regarding the level of criticism people can level against the church and get away with it.

I was also surprised to find out that he has been lecturing on and promoting the Book by Pontius called “Visions of Glory”.

Gileadi recently did a lecture called

“Spencer’s Vision Compared to the Vision of Isaiah”

Gileadi has done a comparison of the content in Isaiah and the content in the visions that Spencer claims to have had and he claims they are consistent and compatible. Apparently he has bought into the belief that the visions contained in the book are authentic and accurate. I have purchased the book and within just a few pages I have huge misgivings. It really surprises me that someone like Gileadi would put their reputation on the line by promoting something like that.

First I will bullet point some of the things I really liked about the lecture:

  • He spoke in greater detail about the role of “proxy Saviors” and the “Emperor/Vassal model” which, of course, completely substantiates my thesis on the Biblical role of Joseph Smith. He did quite a good job on the topic and helped me realize that my paper on the Biblical Profile of Joseph Smith probably needed this topic addressed.
  • He made a sarcastic remark about how we used to be allowed to give our own talks in church but now we are assigned to simply review talks previously  given by General Authorities that have already been given. He pointed out that it was a positive learning experience when a person needed to research and prepare their own talk. (my son teaches in the elders quorum and is limited to just regurgitating old conference talks, so I know what Gileadi is referring to )
  • He said that when the Book of Mormon prophecies about the people who will say, “A Bible a Bible we need no other Bible..” it is a future event speaking about the response of many Latter day Saints when additional books of scripture come forth. I’ve already covered that several times over the years, but it was fun to see that he had come to the same conclusion, despite his allegiance to the corporate church.
  • He said that the righteous watchman were going to replace the wicked watchman.
  • He said he was working on his last book about the 144,000 which will be very controversial and may need to go into hiding after publishing it. (The comment was somewhat light-hearted and facetious but kind of serious)
  • The high point of the experience took place when a man on the back row read the part in 3 nephi 11 describing the simplicity of what the fulness of the Gospel is and how “more or less than this cometh of evil..” He then began referring to the things the LDS people do in secret and how the temple endowment/ordinances constituted more or less than the pure simple gospel… two of the stronger personalities in the room kind of tried to discount what he was saying and got him to shut up, but it was great fun while it lasted, and kind of interesting, considering my recent blocked comment on the Interpreter blog.

Here are some theological themes he covered that I strongly disagree with:

  • He doesn’t think the Gentiles officially scattered the House of Israel, per the prophecies in the Book of Mormon,  until about 1890 or later and uses wounded knee as his proof.
  • He thinks the Kings and Queens of the Gentiles that carry the House of Israel on their shoulders, refers to contemporary Latter day Saints when they finally get their act together and go forth in power gathering the Lamanites, Jews and Ten Tribes and restoring them to their lands of inheritance, etc. He doesn’t seem to accept the literal unconditional promises in modern revelation that the first elders of the last kingdom are going to return to fulfill their assignments while the vast majority of the Mormons reject the Marvelous Work.
  • He continuously emphasizes on how we are not living the fulness of the Gospel but never once mentions the mandatory requirement to live consecration.
  • He seems to think the upcoming Marvelous Work only has to do with restoring the House of Israel to their lands and not with restoring priesthood or the gospel
  • He actually said the Gentiles were not the covenant people. (I don’t know how he reconciles 2 Nephi 30:2)
  • He said be wary of lecturers that tell you how to gain an audience with the Lord and get your calling and election, because it is not something you seek and learn to do, rather it is something that just happens after one has sacrificed and shown obedience. (He was obviously referring to Denver Snuffer) Ironically, within a few minutes of stating that, he read a verse that said something like, “..that they may know how to come to me..” LOL I am not disagreeing with him, I just thought it was kind of funny.
  • He says the Book of Isaiah is not about Joseph Smith’s time, at all, only about the end times that is still future. He thinks EVERYTHING mentioned in Isaiah is yet future and he also thinks the passage about those who seek but fail to bring forth Zion directly after the Book of Mormon comes forth in 1 Nephi 13:35-37… is not referring to Joseph Smith’s ministry but is yet a future event)
  • He defines “Fulness of the Gentiles” as “The Latter day Saints” or the “Seed of Ephraim”, instead of as1-  the time when the Gentiles are given the Fulness of the Gospel/Priesthood or 2- the time when the Gentiles reach a fulness of iniquity.
  • He still thinks the Jerusalem Isaiah Speaks about in the end times is in the Old World and that the Jews are the Ashkenazi Jews. He differentiates the secular Jews from the religious Jews and seems to think the 1948 establishment of the state of Israel was a truly inspired prophetic event.
  • He thinks the three Nephites that were translated are celestial beings while the other nine are terrestrial beings

 The True Biblical Meaning of Tithing

I want to address some false information and myths about consecration and tithing. It is commonly taught and believed in the church that once the Saints failed to live the law of consecration, the Lord gave them a lesser economic law called the law of “tithing”.

This is simply not true in my opinion.

I have never seen this documented in the scriptures, other than in the chapter heading of Section 119 which grossly misinterprets the revelation to justify their modern practice of tithing.

Yes I realize that some Presidents of the church have put their spin on the doctrine, but I don’t think there is a canonized revelation that supports the current teachings on tithing.

Don’t get me wrong. I think we should help the poor and make contributions even in our fallen state, I just think we need to get the facts about God’s law correct.

The scriptural terms “sacrifice” and “tithe” and “tithing” are generally used to refer to the first part of the law of consecration having to do with giving all surplus properties to the Bishop, when speaking about God’s economic laws.

The terms “tithing” and “tithe” NEVER refer to the annual payment of 10% of income or interest.

While it is true that some modern dictionaries define tithe or tithing to refer to a payment of 10% of ones annual income, that definition is not biblical. By doing a keyword search, it will become apparent that the scriptures do not define the term that way.

Consecration is a two part process. The first part that initiates the law of consecration is the initial giving of all surplus property to the Bishops storehouse. The second part has to do with the annual payment of 10% of one’s interest.

The true biblical definition of tithing has to do with the initial offering of surplus property, not the annual payment of 10% of the interest.

The passage of scripture which is commonly used erroneously, to suggest a new lesser law, that temporarily replaces the law of consecration, is found in section 119 of the Doctrine and Covenants. The truth is that Section 119 is not introducing a new lesser law to replace the law of consecration, it is reiterating and clarifying the law of consecration that had previously been given in section 42 and other revelations. 119  is completely consistent with section 42 and every other section about consecration.

Interestingly, section 119 defines “tithing” as the initial offering of surplus property to the storehouse, not the annual interest payments. Notice the following verses:

 1  VERILY, thus saith the Lord, I require all their surplus property to be put into the hands of the bishop of my church in Zion,
2  For the building of mine house, and for the laying of the foundation of Zion and for the priesthood, and for the debts of the Presidency of my Church.
And this shall be the beginning of the tithing of my people.

As you can see, the beginning of the tithing of God’s people is defined as the requirement to put all surplus property into the hands of the Bishop in Zion. The payment of 10% of the increase does not become part of a true tithe until the initial consecration is entered into and paid. Although some Mormon foolishly think they can bypass actually living the law by simply making a promise to live it, if the authorities ever ask them to, are sadly mistaken. The Lord forsaw this folly and emphasized that they repentance would not be complete until the laws are lived, “not only to say, but to do“. (Section 84:57)

This definition of what a tithe is, is reiterated again, in the same section, in the following passage:

4  And after that, those who have thus been tithed shall pay one-tenth of all their interest annually; and this shall be a standing law unto them forever, for my holy priesthood, saith the Lord.

There it is again, to be tithed, is the act giving the initial surplus properties.  That is what constitutes and defines the act of being tithed. Following that, the consecrated person will pay one tenth of their interest annually.

It appears that interest refers to profit, interest, or increase.

The 1828 Websters says: Any surplus advantage.

Interestingly, even the initial petition that Joseph Smith made to the Lord that resulted in the revelation also defines what tithing means:

“O Lord, show unto thy servants how much thou requirest of the properties of they people for a tithing..” (See chapter heading of section 119)

As you can see, the petition of Joseph Smith’s also defines tithing to refer to the initial offering of surplus properties and not to the annual 10% of increase that follows the initial consecration.

Admittedly, the context for section 119 is a little confusing because it makes it look like the saints were still attempting consecration after the Lord had temporarily released them from the law for a little season during the Zion’s Camp expedition..

First of all, it must be remembered that when giving counsel to the apostles and missionaries in July of 1839, just one year after Section 119 was given,  Joseph Smith declared that the Saints “..are not required to sacrifice [consecrate].”

Again, he was referring to the fact that the Lord had temporarily released the saints from the commandment to live the laws of Zion, including consecration, for a little season, until the land of Zion was redeemed. This is why it is doubtful that the saints were seriously starting to consecrate again in Far West, after failing in their efforts in Kirtland and Jackson. More than likely, the revelation was simply stating how the beginning of law of tithing would take place when the appointed time arrives. (I realize the saints were probably taking the revelation seriously and possibly attempting to resume their failed attempt to consecrate again, but the fact that they needed to flee from Far West soon after they arrived is a good indicator that the Lord was not very impressed with any offerings being made)

Here are the passages in section 105 releasing the saints from living consecration for a little season:

“Behold, I say unto you, were it not for the transgressions of my people, speaking concerning the church and not individuals, they might have been redeemed even now.

But behold, they have not learned to be obedient to the things which I required at their hands, but are full of all manner of evil, and do not impart of their substance, as becometh saints, to the poor and afflicted among them;

And are not united according to the union required by the law of the celestial kingdom;

And Zion cannot be built up unless it is by the principles of the law of the celestial kingdom; otherwise I cannot receive her unto myself.

And my people must needs be chastened until they learn obedience, if it must needs be, by the things which they suffer.

I speak not concerning those who are appointed to lead my people, who are the first elders of my church, for they are not all under this condemnation…

Therefore, in consequence of the transgressions of my people, it is expedient in me that mine elders should wait for a little season for the redemption of Zion..

And this cannot be brought to pass until mine elders are endowed with power from on high.

For behold, I have prepared a great endowment and blessing to be poured out upon them, inasmuch as they are faithful and continue in humility before me.

Therefore it is expedient in me that mine elders should wait for a little season, for the redemption of Zion…And let those commandments which I have given concerning Zion and her law be executed and fulfilled, after her redemption.

As you can see,the Lord had told the saints they did not need to live consecration until after Zion’s redemption.

Zion had not been established again at the time of section 119, even though Far West was considered to also be in the “land of Zion”.

According to the revelation, Zion could not be established except upon the principle of celestial law which mandates consecration.

Joseph Smith’s declaration in July of 1839 that the Saints were not required to sacrifice (consecrate) is consistent with Joseph’s decision to not have the Saints consecrate in Nauvoo (the cornerstone of Zion).

Less than a year after section 119 was given, when the Saints were establishing Nauvoo, Joseph Smith declared before the High Council on March 6 1840 that “The law of consecration could not be kept here, and that the it was the will of the Lord that we should desist from trying to keep it; and if persisted in, it would produce a perfect defeat of its object..”
http://josephsmithpapers.org/paperSummary/history-1838-1856-volume-c-1-2-november-1838-31-july-1842?p=198#!/paperSummary/history-1838-1856-volume-c-1-2-november-1838-31-july-1842&p=198

He repeated this directive again on March 30, 1841:

Joseph said that an Equality would Not answer for he says if we were eaqual in property at present in six months we would be worse than Ever for there is too many Dishonest men amongst us who has more injenity to threat the Rest &c

http://boap.org/LDS/Parallel/1841/30Mar41.html

This of course made sense, since the wheat were mingled among the tares, nevertheless, it seemed to contradict the urgency and essential need to live consecration that he been revealed in the early revelations when the fulness of the Gospel and priesthood were on the earth. After all, the Lord had warned the saints that they would be damned if they did not live the law.

The Lord had also warned-

“in your temporal things you shall be equal, and this not grudgingly, otherwise the abundance of the manifestations of the Spirit shall be withheld.”

It would be a serious thing for the manifestations of the spirit to be withheld! (this is one of the many reasons we know that people who think they have enjoyed the second comforter have been deceived.. because the manifestations of the higher spiritual gifts have been and will continue to be withheld until the servants return, remove the curses on us, and reinstate consecration)

No wonder members of the High Council in Nauvoo probably felt a little uneasy about neglecting this law. They did not want the manifestations of the spirit to be withheld. Because of this, Joseph Smith had to assure the brethren that “.. he assumed the whole responsibility of not keeping it until proposed by himself“. (HC Vol 4 page 93)

With this background, one needs to read section 119 with the understanding that the revelation was probably simply answering the petition, explaining how the future tithing of the people would take place when the appointed time for Zion to be established comes.

“O Lord, show unto thy servants how much thou requirest of the properties of the thy people for a tithing?”

Another passage of scripture that is often misinterpreted is section 64:23

“Behold, now it is called today until the coming of the Son of Man, and verily it is a day of sacrifice, and a day for the tithing [consecration] of my people; for he that is tithed shall not be burned at his coming.”

Again, this passage is speaking about living the law of consecration, not some lesser law. One could simply replace the word “tithing” with the word “consecration” and the integrity of the passage would stay intact.

Recently a popular Blogger erroneously claimed that this passage represented the Lord giving the lesser law of tithing to replace the law of consecration. This is ridiculous because, as I have pointed out, tithing means consecration, not a lesser law that has replaced consecration.

Furthermore, section 64 was given in August of 1831 long before the saints failed at their attempt at consecration. The Bishops storehouse was not even organized until April 26 of 1832 (section 82) and it was not discontinued because of transgression until April 23rd of 1834 (section 104)

As you can see, it doesn’t make sense that God would give the saints a lesser financial law to replace consecration before they had even failed at consecration.

We could keep going on evaluating passages that speak of the “tithe” or “tithing”.

Section 85:3 says:

3  It is contrary to the will and commandment of God that those who receive not their inheritance by consecration, agreeable to his law, which he has given, that he may tithe [consecrate] his people, to prepare them against the day of vengeance and burning, should have their names enrolled with the people of God.

Section 97:11 says

11  Yea, let it be built speedily, by the tithing [consecration] of my people.

Malachi 3:10 says:

10  Bring ye all the tithes [surplus properties followed by 10% of the annual increase] into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

Malachi is obviously speaking of the time when God’s apostate people will repent and begin to gather and consecrate to prepare for the return of the Lord. At that time a great blessing will be poured out upon the people.

The scriptures never use the term tithing the way the modern corporate church currently defines it.

Again, I am not saying we should not help the poor, which was originally one of the major purposes of paying tithing, I am simply saying, we need to show ourselves approved of God by searching the scriptures to better understand God’s laws.  Even if we are going to use them as a pattern or type for the system we are using today

Let me give a brief example of how this understanding might affect people financially in today’s corrupt system, in the corrupted church.

Lets say the Ned, Ted and Fred are all struggling to earn a living and support their families.

All of them gross $30,000  annually, and pay $3,000 in payroll taxes and have $300 left over at the end of the year after paying all of the legitimate expenses that their families incur, but before tithing has been paid. (I realize that is not a probable scenario, this is just  simplified illustration to make a point)

Each of them goes to tithing settlement and declares that they have paid a full tithe to the Bishop according to their understanding of what tithing is.

Ned paid $3,000 in what the LDS church erroneously calls tithing, for the year because he had understood that he should pay 10% based on the gross paycheck that he earned. He had to pull money out of his savings and retirement plan to pay the $,3000 and is getting further into debt and very miserable, but feels good that he paid a full tithe.

Ted paid $2700 in what the church erroneously calls tithing because he had been taught that God’s lesser law of tithing is based on 10% of the net pay check. He realizes it is foolish to pay tithing on money that is never even received.

Ted did not have savings or retirement funds so he borrowed some money from family members and took out a loan so that he could get square with the Lord and declare himself to be a full tithe payer, according to his false belief of what his obligation was. He is getting further into debt and very miserable, but feels good that he paid a full tithe.

Fred paid $30 in what the church erroneously calls tithing because he understood God’s law to require 10% of one’s annual interest, or increase. Since his annual increase was $300 after taxes and all legitimate bills, he understood his requirement to be 10% of that increase.

Fred is not increasing his debt and going into greater financial bondage as a result of paying is increase because God’s economic laws were never meant to be a financial cursing but rather a blessing.

Fred knows the Lord appreciates his sincere desire to understand God’s laws. Even though he realizes there is no  such thing as the lesser law of tithing, he wants to contribute and he realizes that the spirit of the law would indicate that one should pay annually based on 10% of increase. Obviously he could and would pay more if he were in a position to do so and if the spirit impressed upon his mind to do so.

Ned and Ted are in financial bondage with little light at the end of the tunnel. They find it very difficult to get an increase because of what they perceive to be their tithing obligation. They have been indoctrinated to believe that it is a necessary sacrifice for people like them because if they did not sacrifice, the general authorities who are compensated hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, to match the huge salaries they had previously garnered in Babylon.

Ned and Ted realize that the highly educated and trained leaders of the Church, would not be able to maintain their lavish standard of living as they valiantly lead the kingdom of God towards Zion, if it were not for the noble sacrifice people like them are making. The tremendous “investment spree” in shopping malls and other important expenditures would be curtailed without faithful tithe payers.

The reason I point out this scenario is because if every faithful member of the LDS church would pay based on 10% of their INTEREST/INCREASE, rather than on their gross or net pay, there would actually still be plenty of funds to take care of the poor and to achieve the legitimate requirements of the financial law, yet there would be much less financial suffering among faithful tithe payers who are struggling financially.

Furthermore, the leadership of the church would be forced to become responsible stewards in their use of the funds. It should be noted that the modern church does not even use tithing as the primary vehicle for taking care of the poor, instead, they put an additional burden upon the saints for that purpose. It should also be noted that New Testament Christianity never built “chapels” for Sunday worship. They were divided into smaller congregations that met in the saints homes and in groves when the weather was permitting. The focus on building expensive  chapels is an unnecessary abomination which serves as an amenity to make the saints feel like they are being taken well care of by a benevolent organization.

As it is, with people paying such unscriptural and obscene amounts of their income to the corporation, it has caused the LDS church to  be flush with money. Since the corporation is hemorrhaging with cash coming out of its ying-yang, it has forced the financial arm of the church to frantically look for all sorts of Babylonian ways to invest the funds in ward buildings, temples, real estate, multi-billion dollar shopping malls,  stocks, bonds, business investments, etc.

[Editorial Notes: Years ago I was reading the diary or a letter from of one of the really early missionaries, that was in England, during the early 1840's. I think it was Wilford Woodruff or one of the other early apostles. He commented on how the people in the apostate protestant churches were being oppressed by the requirement to pay 10% of all of their income annually. He could not believe how duped the financially oppressed people were! From a purely economic point of view, someone that spends a lifetime paying 10% of their gross or net paycheck, actually ends up making a much larger financial sacrifice than they would if they simply  consecrated and paid 10% of their annual increase. ]

 “Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith
The Art of Parsing God’s Word and Deleting Context

I used to think the book “Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith” by Joseph Fielding Smith was one of the greatest things since sliced bread and a wonderful resource for gospel study because it distilled the important information from church history and saves us all alot of time doing our own research.

Now I have begun to despise it as a ploy to hide context.

Let me explain.

I was recently reading part of an excellent paper written by Paul Toscano wherein he points out that an oft quoted statement is always taken out of context.

Here is the quote re referred to:

I will give you one of the Keys of the mysteries of the Kingdom. It is an eternal principle, that has existed with God from all eternity: That man who rises up to condemn others, finding fault with the Church, saying that they are out of the way, while he himself is righteous, then know assuredly, that that man is in the high road to apostasy; and if he does not repent, will apostatize, as God lives..”

We have all heard that statement quoted many times.

However, as Toscano points out, Joseph Smith was not referring to church members being critical of church leaders, he was speaking about a general principle and his main emphasis and warning was directed at people who “rise up” into priesthood leadership positions that become critical of the church membership.

This pattern is seen in Satan’s rising up into a position of authority in the presence of God and then his eventual fall from heaven and his character trait of always accusing the saints before God day and night.

This council from Joseph Smith was also prophetic.

I believe he was alluding to the fact that a future priesthood leader in the church would “rise up” to a greater position and show these characteristics… perhaps even one of the apostles that he was addressing on that occasion.

When I spent weeks reviewing the sermons of Brigham Young, after he had himself voted as the President of the Church, I was shocked at the recurring theme that showed up in his sermons. The saints were in apostasy and darkness, yet Brigham himself had ever done anything wrong and all of his words could be considered as scripture, etc.

Anyway, my point is, that the reason that we members of the church have been indoctrinated with a quote that is taken out of context, is not only because general authorities have misused the quote, but because it is provided as a snippet, without the proper context, in the book “Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith” by Joseph Fielding Smith.

Members of the church are lazy and would rather read the snippets from church history, rather than the full context in church history.

After reading that observation of the proper context of the quote by Toscano, I went to the Joseph Smith Papers site to read the whole section from which the quote was taken. Joseph Smith was giving counsel to leaders of the church.

I was shocked and horrified to read numerous quotes from “Teachings” in the original context in which they were originally given.

WOW.

Shame on me and all of us that have allowed ourselves to be spoon fed with snippets carefully parsed by those who want to protect us from the true context in which the statements were made.

BTW

Here is part of Toscano’s paper that contains some profound content

Brethren, before you judge those you think are contentious, ask yourselves if you are hnot also contentious? Who has divided the church into leaders and followers, intellectuals and mainstream members, believers and liberals, true voices and alternate voices, active Mormons and inactive Mormons?

To label, renounce, stigmatize, or reject your follow Saints because we disagree with you or cannot accept all you want us to accept is the kind of contention and divisiveness Jesus warned against. And not Jesus only. Joseph Smith said: “I will give you one of the Keys of the mysteries of the Kingdom. It is an eternal principle, that has existed with God from all eternity: That man who rises up to condemn others, finding fault with the Church, saying that they are out of the way, while he himself is righteous, then know assuredly, that that man is in the high road to apostasy; and if he does not repent, will apostatize, as God lives.. This famous statement, made by the prophet on 2 July 1839, is often quoted to members who are critical of you as a warning that criticism can lead to apostasy. But this twists the original meaning and purpose of the statement.

Joseph Smith did not say these words TO church members WHO WERE critical of the leaders. He said them to church leaders to apostles and seventies- who were critical of church members. He warned leaders of the church, not to put themselves above others, not to condemn others, not to find fault with the church, not to say that members are out of the way while leaders are righteous.

Brethren, you ignore this warning whenever you create, maintain, or reinforce categories of church membership or attempt to classify people as intellectuals, liberals, or dissidents. We all do it whenever we believed there are people whom we esteem as less valuable than ourselves, whose voices we do not have to hear- people who must listen to us but who have not right to be heard. We violate Joseph Smith’s warning whenever we insist on the use of titles to distinguish leaders from followers. Did not Jesus instruct us not to call each other by titles?? We are brothers and sisters, children of Christ.

The complete paper can be read here

https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V26N01_111.pdf

 

 

PS

Joseph Smith’s declaration in Far West and Nauvoo that the saints were no longer require to “sacrifice” demonstrates that the secret vision behind the veil in 1836 marked the changing of the “day” of the gentiles to the “day” of the House of Israel.

Section 64 had declared that it would be a day of sacrifice until the coming of the Son of Man:

“Behold, now it is called today until the coming of the Son of Man, and verily it is a day of sacrifice, and a day for the tithing of my people; for he that is tithed shall not be burned at his coming”

Yet shortly after the secret visitation, Joseph was informing people that the saints were no longer required to sacrifice. Clearly the “day” mentioned in section 64 had changed. The  “coming of the Son of Man” had taken place sometime before Joseph’s declaration in 1839. When had the coming of the Son of Man taken place? IN THE KIRTLAND TEMPLE!!!!!

Here is one more evidence proving the historicity of section 110 DS!

 

 


The Danger of Riches and Inequality and the Law of Consecration

May 3, 2014

I have been on the road now with my youngest son for a while doing a little writing and sightseeing. I am currently in Nauvoo. I have been here nearly a week. I am thinking about hitting Independence or Kirtland after this stop. I have a herniated disk in my back which has been excruciating at times. Any prayers from any of you out there would be muchly appreciated.

I am making this post because of an incredible work of gospel scholarship that was sent to me that I want to share with you, but, first, I will share a few of the interesting experiences that I have had thus far-

The Martyrdom: I met an LDS guy that became obsessed with the history of the Martyrdom and has written a book about it and moved to Nauvoo. He claims that William Law was somewhat involved in the martyrdom conspiracy and that he was meeting with Joseph Smith’s two shady lawyers in Fort Madison at the time of the martyrdom, which provided his alibi. I will be digesting his book when I get a chance. It seems like there are certain topics of the gospel and church history that the Lord picks certain people to investigate and share information about. I love it when I meet people with passion who have closely researched a given topic.

Nauvoo Christian Center: I always enjoy meeting with the guy at this place. This time I harped on the obvious TOTAL apostasy of ALL flavors of Christianity have experienced and the need for priesthood authority. The more I talked the harder he tapped his foot on the floor as he was listening to me. It is insidious and disgraceful how much delight I get out of making some people uncomfortable. He is a salt of the earth person that, like the rest of us, is doing the best he can to live the gospel and bring people to the truth as he sees it. I really enjoy chatting with. He never remembers who I am each time I visit him. I told him that is because I am a very forgettable personality.. LOL

Community of Christ Historian: I had the opportunity to meet with one of the Community of Christ administrators who is also one of their top historians. I will not divulge his name since I neglected to ask for permission to do so. He said some very interesting things. One of the things I got from the conversation is that for years, the leaders of the RLDS and LDS church debated back and forth over whether Joseph Smith was really involved in polygamy. He indicated that many years later, when the top officials of the RLDS church could no longer deny the overwhelming flood of evidence that Joseph was involved in it, it really threw their church into an identity crisis, as well as a crisis of faith. That is largely what ultimately motivated the RLDS church to change its name, take its emphasis off of church history, off of the importance of Joseph Smith and even off of the Book of Mormon.

I can remember how shocked I was back when it changed it’s name to the community of Christ and how it seemed like they morphed into a protestant church instead of a restoration church, almost overnight. I remember how some of their main-streamers left the church at that time, unwilling to give up their roots and core beliefs. I suspect that is about the time and the reason that the Prices left the fold. I had meant to ask him his thoughts about the Prices but forgot.. Apparently he feels the same way about the Prices work that John Hamer does. Here is John Hamers response to me about the Prices:

 The Prices are wrong about Joseph and polygamy. They are in the “Josephite” (RLDS) tradition, but they are not in Community of Christ. They are independent “Restorationists” (meaning conservatives who separated from the RLDS Church). I’m familiar with their arguments; I’ve read their book. Their book is entirely uninformed of the evidence; it’s not actual scholarship; it’s simply a repeat of old pre-scholarly RLDS polemics that have been discredited. I have not personally met them or conversed with them on the topic, although I have been to their book store in Independence.

Back at the time of the transformation from RLDS to Community of Christ, I did not connect the dots that the polygamy issue was such a huge part of their transformation.

He feels that the pendulum is now beginning to swing back a little bit in their church towards embracing their history, but with a more healthy and realistic view of history and the role of prophets. He emphasized that prophets are not perfect and they have human weaknesses and can make mistakes, etc. I asked him if he still believes the BofM is what it claims to be as far as a literal history of an ancient civilization.. he said no, but that it is still a good book with good principles. I love how candid and forthright he was and how the enmity that used to exist between the two churches appears to be completely gone now. The contention is gone and nobody is trying to convert the other side or show the falicy of their position anymore.. I think the polygamy issue and all of the difficult issues brought out by the  “Google Apostasy” has provided both groups with a huge portion of humble pie. BTW, I noticed an interesting article at the Mormon Interpreter

Separated but not Divorced: The LDS Church’s Uncomfortable Relationship with its Polygamous Past

Zarahemla:  I have previously speculated that the land of Zarahemla in the Book of Mormon ,was located in the same place, across the river from Nauvoo, that was named Zarahemla by revelation. (Section 125) Since Wayne May has declared that he may have found the place where an ancient temple was located, in the old city of Zarahemla, I thought it would be fun to see if I could locate that parcel of land. I wanted to see if I could locate the land using the Google Maps graphic that he provided in his article. I wanted to see if in fact he has begun his archeological dig.

Sure enough, I found it!

It does not appear as if he has begun digging. Perhaps he never acquired the land for some reason. I couldn’t help but notice that when driving along the road along the river, there is a space of about a half a mile in which one can see the exact front of the Nauvoo Temple, without seeing part of either side of the temple which enables a person to gauge when they are directly in front of the temple. Interestingly, the piece of land Wayne thinks is the place of the old Zarahemla Temple falls nicely within that range. The Nauvoo Temple is one of the very few temples that faces west. That puts the Nauvoo temple facing west directly towards Zarahemla. Assuming that the new temple is positioned where the old one was in Nauvoo, and that the place of the old temple Wayne has identified in Zarahemla is accurate, this puts both temples facing each other directly, across the river from each other. That also assumes that the Zarahemla Temple faced (and will face) east, like most temples do.. I find this interesting based on the following passage of scripture and the following definition from the 1828Websters:

Let them build up a city unto my name upon the land opposite the city of Nauvoo, and let the name of Zarahemla be named upon it.”

OP’POSITE, a. [L. oppositus. ]1. Standing or situated in front; facing; as an edifice opposite to the Exchange. Brooklyn lies opposite to New York,”

The Danger of Riches and Inequality and the Law of Consecration

I have really enjoyed my semi retirement from blogging and had no intention of blogging during this pilgrimage, however, I have been motivated to write this post because of an email with some scholarship that I just had to share with you.

A fellow has contacted me and told me about his blog that has a 12 part thesis on the law of consecration. He has done a remarkable job of researching the topic. I would have to say it may be the best paper I have ever seen on the topic with the exception of a few assumptions made within and at the end of the thesis that I strongly disagree with.

I am so impressed with the thesis that I am going to share the new blog post and encourage everyone interested in the topic to read all 12 parts of the thesis even though the assumptions in the final part, in my opinion, are seriously flawed. I am also going to share the email I sent back to this person, so that my readers will know what the issues are that I disagree with.

I want to thank the fellow who wrote the thesis, it obviously has taken a long to time to put it together. I believe he has done an outstanding job of scriptural research.

Here are links to his blog and the twelve parts of the thesis. It will be interesting to see what else he posts about.

 

Here is the content of my response (with a few minor changes) to the author of the above thesis after I had read all 12 parts of it

 

 

“WOW

 

I just finished reading your thesis on the danger of riches and inequality and the Law of Consecration, which I assume is your personal Magnus Opus.

 

 

I loved it.

 

I have been thinking about doing an exhaustive paper on the topic of consecration and have felt overwhelmed at the thought of doing it… NOW I DON’T NEED TOO!

 

I love your zeal and passion and I love that I have identified someone else that agrees with me that the manifestations of the Lords spirit are being withheld because of our failure to live the mandatory law of the gospel. (If people comprehended this, they would not fall for the belief that the Lord somehow overlooked the failure to live consecration but decided to give a “higher law of Polygamy” to the Saints anyway. They would also realize the folly and deception of those claiming to have the second comforter when in fact, the Lord has told us that he is withhold the manifestations of his spirit until the church repents and obeys the laws of Zion, etc.

 

I think you have been inspired of the Lord to do this amazing work and I want to recommend your blog to others.

 

I need to ask you a few questions, because, if I recommend it the way it is currently written, I will need to put a disclaimer about a few of the things you have said that I don’t agree with…

 

Please take this in the spirit in which it is intended..

 

Let me say that I agreed with 99% of everything you said until I got to part 12.

You made the following statement,

 

“Many theorize that the law of consecration is in some way meant to be hypothetical or forthcoming, in essence a law that we would agree to live by, and are supposedly willing to some day, if and when we are commanded to do so. I can’t find anything in the scriptures to support these ideas.”

 

That belief, that we can and should live the law of consecration right now, shows up a few times throughout your work and of course, you really drive it home in the last part.

 

Here is why it gives me great indigestion-

 

Allow me to respond to your challenge to show where we are in fact told to wait until a forthcoming time to live consecration..

 

In section 105, one of the many sections you quote from, the Lord says this:

 

VERILY I say unto you who have assembled yourselves together that you may learn my will concerning the redemption of mine afflicted people—

2  Behold, I say unto you, were it not for the transgressions of my people, speaking concerning the church and not individuals, they might have been redeemed even now.

3  But behold, they have not learned to be obedient to the things which I required at their hands, but are full of all manner of evil, and do not impart of their substance, as becometh saints, to the poor and afflicted among them;

4  And are not united according to the union required by the law of the celestial kingdom;

5  And Zion cannot be built up unless it is by the principles of the law of the celestial kingdom; otherwise I cannot receive her unto myself.

6  And my people must needs be chastened until they learn obedience, if it must needs be, by the things which they suffer.

7  I speak not concerning those who are appointed to lead my people, who are the first elders of my church, for they are not all under this condemnation;

8  But I speak concerning my churches abroad—there are many who will say: Where is their God?  Behold, he will deliver them in time of trouble, otherwise we will not go up unto Zion, and will keep our moneys.

9  Therefore, in consequence of the transgressions of my people, it is expedient in me that mine elders should wait for a little season for the redemption of Zion—

10  That they themselves may be prepared, and that my people may be taught more perfectly, and have experience, and know more perfectly concerning their duty, and the things which I require at their hands.

11  And this cannot be brought to pass until mine elders are endowed with power from on high.

12  For behold, I have prepared a great endowment and blessing to be poured out upon them, inasmuch as they are faithful and continue in humility before me.

13  Therefore it is expedient in me that mine elders should wait for a little season, for the redemption of Zion.

33  Verily I say unto you, it is expedient in me that the first elders of my church should receive their endowment from on high in my house, which I have commanded to be built unto my name in the land of Kirtland.

34  And let those commandments which I have given concerning Zion and her law be executed and fulfilled, after her redemption.

 

My interpretation of the above passages is that after the Saints failed to live the laws of Zion, most notably, for the purposes of this conversation, the law of consecration, the Lord temporarily revoked the commandment to live it, until after the final restoration during the upcoming Marvelous Work and a Wonder begins and after the land of Zion is once again physically redeemed (as per the prophecy of the redemption of Zion given in section 101), and after the first elders receive their endowment of power from on high.

 

I am not saying we should not be living the law of Zion in our hearts. I am not saying we should not be going by the spirit to responsibly impart our excess substance to the poor as the spirit guides us and to not have our hearts set on accumulating wealth.

 

However, living the actual law of Zion, under the direction of the Lord and his ordained servants, is not an option right now, in my opinion, during this, the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham that we currently live in.

 

One of the things that jumped out at me as I read your document, is that all of the people that were commanded to sell all that they had and give it to the poor, had the blessing of the safety net of the Lords storehouse when they took that leap of faith. We don’t have that safety net at this time. Therefore, the act of doing what you seem to be suggesting may be irresponsible foolishness that could actually result in putting the giver into the position of being poor and being reliant on others if their income should ever stop for some reason, after they have given all of their excess away. (you cannot count on the church as a safety net. They have no obligation to support anyone if they decide for any reason not to. There is a single lady in my neighborhood right now who is being denied welfare that she needs because she had not previously been a full tithe payer.)

 

I realize that what I am saying sounds faithless, and perhaps it is. But I see a practical application to what the Lord is telling us with regard to the law of consecration. His law is a very practical law because it focuses on providing temporally for those in need. I don’t think the Lord wants others to become needy themselves by being irresponsible with their financial stewardships.

 

It appears to me, that even the rich man, who was told to sell all that he had and give it to the poor, was not even being told to just go by faith that he would be taken care of, in the inspired version, we are informed us that the Jews at that time, had their own form of consecration set up with a storehouse treasury safety net:

“Then said John to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, crying against them with a loud voice, saying, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, Abraham is our father; we have kept the commandments of God, and none can inherit the promises but the children of Abraham; for I say unto you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

And now also, the axe is laid unto the root of the trees; every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit, shall be hewn down, and cast into the fire.

And the people asked him, saying, What shall we do then?

He answered and said unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath meat, let him do likewise.

Then came also publicans to be baptized, and said unto him, Master, what shall we do?

And he said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed unto you.

For it is well known unto you, Theophilus, that after the manner of the Jews, and according to the custom of their law in receiving money into the treasury, that out of the abundance which was received, was appointed unto the poor, every man his portion;

And after this manner did the publicans also, wherefore John said unto them, Exact no more than that which is appointed you.”

 

The Strongman Model for Zion

The other thing that seems to be missing in your thesis is the fact that Zion cannot be established without God’s servant who has been commissioned and endowed with authority, to direct the cause.

 

In every single successful Zion, there has been a servant endowed with power from on high directing the cause.

 

Enoch’s Zion was directed by the Lord, through revelation, through Enoch.

 

Melchizedek’s Zion was directed by the Lord through revelation, through Melchizedek.

 

Nephi’s Zion-like community was directed personally by the Lord Himself.

 

Prophecy informs us that there will be another anointed servant that will lead the cause of Zion just as there have been in the past.

 

One of the things you surely noticed during your research is that priesthood authority is mandatory to administer the Gospel and establish the Law of Consecration, it cannot simply be done by those desiring to take things into their own hands.

 

Denver Snuffer, a popular LDS author-blogger appears to be telling people that Zion cannot be established with a “strongman model”.

 

He apparently considers leaders like Moses and Joseph Smith to represent a strongman model, although, technically, according to the dictionary, a strongman is someone not inspired, who intimidates people:

 

“..apoliticalleaderwhocontrolsby force; dictator.”

 

In my opinion, Brigham Young was the textbook example of a strongman, however, I think that Snuffer may well be alluding to the fact that he considers the prophetic narrative in the parable of the redemption of Zion, in Section 101 as the strongman model, which he obviously rejects.

 

He seems to be suggesting that everyone simply needs to spontaneously just begin to “rise up” and begin living the law of Zion, even though they are not properly gathered and have no authority.

 

Interestingly, Snuffer’s suggestion actually represents the cumulative strongman model, instead of the God-sanctioned model, my opinion. This is because it is encouraging a group of people to take the law [of the Gospel] into their own hands and move forward without God’s sanction.

 

He doesn’t seem to understand that there is an appointed servant like Enoch and Melchizedek that is to direct the establishment of Zion (and that the servant is not him.)

 

He doesn’t seem to understand that there is an appointed place and time, and that the elect are to be patient and be found watching and waiting for the anointed servants to arrive and begin the gathering.

 

He doesn’t seem to understand that delegated priesthood power is required. He has made some heretical statements indicating that we don’t need the priesthood, like the following ones:

 

“It does not matter whether there is an officiator with authority from God on earth or not”

 

“it would be good to have an authorized minister to perform the ordinance, but the language of Section 20 is not contingent upon authority. Rather it is the faith of the one receiving baptism which determines the ordinance’s validity.”

 

Of course the Book of Mormon makes it perfectly clear that priesthood power and authority is necessary.

 

Just prior to establishing the law of consecration on the American Continent, Christ gave power to his servants to administer the ordinances:

 

“And it came to pass that he spake unto Nephi (for Nephi was among the multitude) and he commanded him that he should come forth.

And Nephi arose and went forth, and bowed himself before the Lord and did kiss his feet. And the Lord commanded him that he should arise.  And he arose and stood before him.

And the Lord said unto him: I give unto you power that ye shall baptize this people when I am again ascended into heaven.

And again the Lord called others, and said unto them likewise; and he gave unto them power to baptize.  And he said unto them: On this wise shall ye baptize; and there shall be no disputations among you.

 

Verily I say unto you, that whoso repenteth of his sins through your words, and desireth to be baptized in my name, on this wise shall ye baptize them—Behold, ye shall go down and stand in the water, and in my name shall ye baptize them”

 

 

As you can see, unlike the gospel according to Brother Snuffer, who does not recognize the mandatory need for delegated priesthood power, and thinks anybody can baptize anybody, without priesthood power, the gospel of Christ is very strict about this. One does need to have the proper priesthood authority.

 

I noticed that in one of his talks, he grossly  misinterpreted Section 64:22-24. He believes that passage was giving the Saints the lesser law of tithing:

 

“One of the things that happened when we failed to live the Law of Consecration was a replacement commandment requiring the payment of tithes. D&C 64:23“Behold, now it is called today until the coming of the Son of Man, and verily it is a day of sacrifice, and a day for the tithing of my people; for he that is tithed shall not be burned at his coming “For after today cometh the burning..”  — this is speaking after the manner of the Lord  for verily I say, tomorrow all the proud and they that do wickedly shall be as stubble; and I will burn them up, for I am the Lord of Hosts; and I will not spare any that remain in Babylon. Wherefore, if ye believe me, ye will labor while it is called today.” (D&C 64: 23-25).

 

First of all, the above interpretation is illogical because Section 64 was being addressed to the elders in Kirtland in September of 1831 and it was not until about three years later that the Saints in Kirtland failed in their attempt to live consecration. They arguably had not even formally been organized and begun the practice it when section 64 was given, even though they had been taught about it.

 

Why would the Lord be giving a lesser law of tithing before the saints failed at the higher law?

 

Secondly, the Lord NEVER gave a lesser law of tithing in any of the published revelations. The term tithing, as used in the scriptures is always either being used interchangeably with the term consecration, or it is referring to the paying of an annual interest or surplus, after being consecrated. Even section 119,  which many people typically, erroneously attribute to being the announcement of a lesser law that replaces consecration, is also referring to the surplus of those previously consecrated.

 

My concern with your logic is that it is the same logic that people like Snuffer use to move forward in establishing Zion without authority. Perhaps you are a follower of Snuffer, I don’t know, but youe logic seems to be similar to his.

 

Those are the issues I have with what you have written.

 

1- We have been commanded to wait until the land of Zion has been redeemed and the first elders have returned and been endowed with priesthood power.

 

2- We have been commanded to establish consecration and Zion under the direction of the Lord and through his priesthood and his anointed servants

 

I would love to get a response from you on those issues.

 

Again, I love the research you have done. You have done an amazing job of accumulating virtually all of the pertinent passages pertaining to this important topic and I love your commentary and how you put so many pieces of the puzzle together.

 

Thank you for sharing it with me.

 

Watcher”

 

Anyway, as you can see, I have some issues with the content of this person’s thesis even though I think he has done a remarkable job of accumulating scriptures having to do with the topic. I have not heard back from this fellow that wrote the thesis on consecration.. perhaps I will add his  response to this post if I do.

 

Enjoy the thesis!

 

[Editorial Notes:] I have since heard back from the author if the thesis. He has softened some of his wording to imply that one can still personally consecrate even though the group covenant was broken..  or something to that effect… I still have some differences of opinion about whether we are actually held accountable to be living it now, however, that is something each of us need to ponder and pray about and arrive at our own conclusions.

I think everyone should read the entire thesis and prayerfully consider all of the passages that he provides.

Again, I think it is the best work I have ever seen written on the topic and it provides some sobering food for thought about how the accumulation of wealth effects a person and what our moral and scriptural responsibilities are with regard to helping our fellow man that is in need.

 

Indeed, the love of money is the root of all evil

 


Miscellaneous Musings #3 Kingdom of the Jews (3/7/2014)

March 7, 2014

are you in the wrong placeWARNING: This blog documents the truthfulness of the restored gospel and the validity of the LDS restoration movement and the ministry of the prophet Joseph Smith, HOWEVER, it also contains very controversial material about LDS Church doctrine and history and it is often critical of modern Mormonism.

I have been pondering lately how important transparency is.

I will probably be providing the above graphic (or something similar) and disclaimer at the top of all future posts that have extensive criticism, or something similar thereto.

Although I have had disclaimers in posts and on the side panels, I have decided to make a more concerted effort to be as transparent as possible about the fact that I do belief in the LDS restoration BUT I believe there has been a latter day apostasy and I am often critical of the Modern Church and their leaders.

The Miscellaneous Musings Format

I like the “miscellaneous Musings” format from time to time because it works well with my short attention span and the fact that I often have multiple thoughts on my mind.

Historical Essays

According to some anti-Mormon sites, the primary person that has been hired and compensated by the Mormon Church to write the historical essays is a person named Jed Woodworth. Apparently, he has written for BYU Studies and was the co-author to the book, ‘Rough Stone Rolling. Although I have never heard of the guy before, I am sure he is well qualified to act as voice for the prophet of the church in demystifying all of the disconcerting historical and doctrinal dilemmas that confront members of the church. I would love to know how much he is getting paid… I would have done it for much less!

Bait n Switch Internet Sites

I feel that certain sites such as Mormonstories, MormonThink and even Blogs that promote books like Denver Snuffer and Daymon Smiths, whether intentional or not, are somewhat disingenuous on how they portray their doctrinal agenda, on their main page and in their public persona. I feel they seduce readers into a surface narrative that appears to be pro-Mormon, by an active, believing, card carrying Mormon or Mormons, and then slowly lead the reader into a deeper narrative that is not faith promoting, and not historically or doctrinally accurate.

Using Faithful Membership to Establish Credibility

People often use their “active membership” and “supportive of the Church”  status as a badge of credibility to promote whatever they are promoting, be it a book, an idea, or even a claim of personal enlightenment.

When people claim to have special information to share or want testify that they have had some miraculous pentecostal experience they will often want to reassure their readers that they are a credible and believable source by making sure that people know that they are an active member of the church that submits to the “authority” of the true church.

If a person were to state on their blog that they are a normal lay member of The Church  and that they respect the authority of those presiding authorities and that they served an honorable mission and married in the temple, and have a current temple recommend and have been and remain an active member of the church and that they have no intentions of leaving it… I would personally see those credentials as a questionable resume for informing people how to see God, are sharing a vision, etc.

Those that know the truth about how the restored,true and living church, with fulness of priesthood, fled back into the wilderness as quickly as it came out of the wilderness, can see a huge red flag in such a testimony. The fact that a person is pointing people to the modern church as God’s true church and encouraging them to put their trust in that authority, negates veracity of their claim that they are having conversations with God IMO.

Nobody that has been allowed into the presence of God, IMO, would be encouraging people to put their trust in the apostate church.

The old, humble, self depreciating, “I am nothing special” disclaimer that people often provide and how they are ” not any more righteous than anyone else”,  just because they have had the heavens opened and saw the father and the son is questionable.

The problem with such nonsense of course is that 99% of the seekers out there that have desperately been exercising faith to have the heavens opened, haven’t been able to and they are extremely frustrated and insecure about it.

Being assured that any “normal lay member” that is not anymore virtuous than anyone else can have the experience, only frustrates the poor ssouls even more.

MormonThink

The folks over at MormonThink provide this declaration at the top of their main page

MormonThink has been produced primarily by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are interested in the historical accuracy of the church and how it is being taught to its members and portrayed in the media.

There is a lot of misinformation on the LDS Church that is presented by both critics and defenders of the faith – particularly on the Internet. We present both viewpoints fairly and let the reader decide.

did-that-really-happen

These purveyors of truth, knowledge, fairness, and objectivity, have also responded to the new history essays in an open letter to President Monson, and, in an attempt to objectively provide both view points, began purchasing billboards along HWY I-15 back in 2011. In November of 2013 their website hits went from 1500 to 170,000 as a result of the billboard marketing campaign:

billboard 1
The above sign seems intriguing.

billboard 2

Saving 10%? Hmm these folks are offering both views?

billboard 3

There’s an objective snippet leading you to both views on the issue!

billboard 4
Yep, if you are feeling confused, mormonthink is surely the place to go because they are prepared to present two fair, unbiased views for you to consider. LOL

Moral Dilemma of News Reporters

The Ukraine

Dennis Kucinich Tells Bill O’Reilly the Truth about US involvement in destabilizing Ukraine

Monster Putin — Could Ukraine standoff have been avoided by Obama?

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2014/03/06/monster-putin-could-ukraine-standoff-have-been-avoided-by-obama/

New York New York

Speaking of the Ukraine, I couldn’t help but see some typology in the following video relating to how well Babylon (America) has seduced the people of other nations into wanting the “good life” and the quest for fame and stardom. We have not only seduced the other nations into the false fiat currency that is easily manipulated by the secret cabal that runs this world, which has brought the nations to the brink of global financial disaster, we have affected their entire world view.

I have never seen so much personality packed into one song. The look on the judges face shortly after the song started compared to his face at 1:13 was priceless. During the first 15 seconds I thought the girl was possessed. By about 1:04 it become apparent this girl can actually sing!

Mrs Watcher claims she missed a few notes in the early part of the song, but this country boy was rather mesmerized by the performance. Since Fusion is a skilled musician, I’ll need to get his input as to whether this girl sang off key or not. It was fun to see how she won the audience and the judges over.

She won me over!

I couldn’t help but wonder what percentage of the audience (and even the judges) speak English.. LOL

I’m sure old “blue eyes” was impressed as he watched the performance from the other side.

The Danger of Conspiracy Theories

A Harvard Law professor wrote a very long paper about the danger of conspiracy theories and on page 14 he offered solutions for dealing with conspiracy theorists:

II. Governmental Responses
 What can government do about conspiracy theories? Among the things it can do, what should it do? We can readily imagine a series of possible responses. (1) Government might ban conspiracy theorizing. (2) Government might impose some kind of tax, financial or otherwise, on those who disseminate such theories. (3) Government might itself engage in counterspeech, marshaling arguments to discredit conspiracy theories. (4) Government might formally hire credible private parties to engage in counterspeech. (5) Government might engage in informal communication with such parties, encouraging them to help. Each instrument has a distinctive set of potential effects, or costs and benefits, and each will have a place under imaginable conditions. However, our main policy idea is that government should engage in cognitive infiltration of the groups that produce conspiracy theories, which involves a mix of (3), (4) and (5).

Daymon Smith and his Cultural Book of Mormon Bullshit

In my last post I shared my belief, after reading the majority of his first two free pdf’s, that Daymon Smith questions the revelations Joseph Smith received in the BofC and the D&C. I have since had two sources verify that my suspicion was correct.

I also questioned whether Daymon even believes the historicity of the Book of Mormon.

I have had two people assure me that he does. One of them recently attended a fireside in which Daymon spoke.

I also speculated that those that accept many of the suppositions contained in Daymon’s writings would end up going down the rabbit hole presented in the jsfellowship site that I provided which postulated that Joseph was never commanded to do anything other than translate the Book of Mormon. That theory of course was just an old David Whitmer invention after he became disenchanted with the church organization

I have now had it confirmed that in fact, that is largely the foundational premise upon which  Daymon’s thesis rests upon, however he has added much more historical detail and gone to great lengths to assassinate the character of people like Parley Pratt and Sidney Rigdon to support his point.

I got a few more emails from the friend that had originally suggested that I read Daymon’s stuff. The confusion of mind and cognitive dissonance that he is experiencing is incredible. IMO He has been thrown into a state of crisis primarily because of the Daymon Smith BS. I am going to share some of his statements and my responses, for those that want to get to the bottom-line  of what Daymon teaches in his writings about the BofM.

I don’t want to clutter this post with the content so you need to click  on the link below to view the dastardly details conjured up from Daymons demons..

daymon smith BS222

Anyway, if the information I have gleaned from my friend is accurate, I believe Daymon Smith has been seduced by an evil spirit and that the same spirit is buffeting my friend. I hope those of you that have obtained a witness that section 1:37-38 is true, and that the revelations in the BofC and D&C that were originally sustained by the church and God, are true, will join with me in mighty prayer that both of these individuals will be released from the spirit of delusion that they have been inflicted with.

The New USA? Secession Movement Gains Steam

http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2014/March/The-New-USA-Secession-Movement-Gains-Steam/

Don’t Seize Guns from Idaho Citizens

February 19th, 2014:
The Idaho Senate passed a bill today without any objection to affirm the 2nd amendment by punishing cops who would obey federal orders to seize the guns of Idaho citizens:

Earth Changes

15 Sinkholes open within a 24 hour period

Four Blood Moons

blood moons

We live in crazy freakin times.

We havein our midst false teachers and prophets that Christ has warned us about.

Well over 20 Bankers have committed suicide( or have been suicided.)

A global financial calamity is being predicted by many between now and the first of four blood moons that  takes place on April 14th or 15th depending on whether you are a Jew or a Gentile.

Some think that war with Russia and China is in the cards.

This is a time to watch even harder than usual.

We are getting ready to start the 13th year of what appears to be a 14 year judgment that followed the completion of the 400 years of affliction prophesied in Gen 15:13-16

Pole shift, sink holes, dramatic climate change, jet stream shift, radiation poisoning the oceans, mass animal die offs, increased volcanic activity, oh my!

Need I say more?

I am going to be turning off my comments functionality or just not moderating and responding to questions as frequently as I used to, from time to time as we approach the first of four blood moons coming up in April. This is because I have some projects I am working on and because I don’t want to be distracted as I WATCH.

Hope you fellow watchers will join me as we WATCH.

I absolutely love all of the comments I get on this blog but I just can’t spend as much time conversing with people as  I used to. Don’t be offended if the comment feature is turned off or I am not as responsive, from time to time.  :)

Here is the next part of the current series.

The Kingdom of the Jews

BTW
If you are a Mormon, there is a good chance you are a Jew :)

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Miscellaneous Musings #2 (2/28/2014)

February 28, 2014

are you in the wrong placeThis blog contains controversial information about the Mormon Church.

The History Essays Addressing Controversial Issues

The LDS Church has begun a series of history essays in an effort to provide an official response to some of the difficult and controversial historical and doctrinal issues that are causing many members of the Church to have a crisis of faith. I first addressed the topic of the LDS Google Apostasy and how the Internet was creating a crisis if faith in many Mormons back in April of 2012

The Google Apostasy Part One

The Google Apostasy Part Two

The Google Apostasy Part Three

The Google Apostasy Part Four

The article quoted Marlin Jensen as saying

The church has assigned a staffer to create “a strategy to get church history onto the Web,” he said. We are also working on an initiative to answer some of these more pressing questions.

Apparently, the initiative to answer some of the “more pressing” questions has materialized in the form of the new history essays that are being published on LDS.org

Predictably, no single general authority is taking credit or responsibility for the content in these essays, but the fact that they are being published on the LDS.org provides the official “stamp of approval” from the brethren. Clearly, the first Presidency of the Church has commissioned this effort and has approved the content thereof even if they have opted to not sign their names to the essays.

This video provides some interesting information about the essays, as given by Elder Steven E. Snow, the relatively new church historian.

He claims that the church has “retained known scholars” that are outside of the LDS historical department to create a draft of each of the essays, which are reviewed by a committee in the Church History Department  and selected General Authorities, and ultimately approved by the Quorum of the Twelve and the First Presidency.

Once approved, each essay is published in “gospel topics” under LDS.org

I was really flattered when I got a call from President Monson’s office asking me if I would be willing to be on a committee that helps to craft some of these essays addressing sensitive subjects. I had no idea the brethren even knew who I was. So you can only imagine how surprised I was when Mrs. Watcher told me that President Monson was on the phone.

I could tell he was quite nervous and trying to gain composure as he asked me how I would feel about participating. I think he was hesitant to ask me since I have been known  to be critical of how the church has avoided addressing some of these sensitive topics.

Of course I was honored to be asked to participate but,  the first thing I asked was, “will I be reimbursed for my efforts?

Actually, I am just have a little bit of fun… (as if it wasn’t blatantly obvious to you)

Naturally, I was disappointed and shocked when the church failed to contact me to be part of this project since I consider my self to be one of the foremost scholars on LDS Church History! LOL

I have a friend who has contacted the church historical department to see if the church is willing to divulge the names of these “known scholars” but and answer to date, has not been forthcoming. If anyone else has any information on this I would be interested in learning who is involved… but we can rest assured that they are “well known”. (Hey, I can’t gripe about this one, after all, I am the one that insists that content should be judged solely on the message, not the messenger!)

I suspect some of my friends involved with FARMS, FAIR and the MORMONINTERPRETER are among the inner elect that are providing illumination on these topics that have previously not been properly researched.

Brother Snow characterizes this project as “ground breaking in a way” because, as he claims, these issues have not had “academic attention” or been “researched properly” in the past.

I am mystified by that statement.

I don’t believe that the research produced in the essays thus far is ground breaking. I do, however, believe that an attempt at authoritative public responses to these issues, in modern times,  with the First Presidency’s stamp of approval, is somewhat ground breaking.

One of the things that Elder Snow pointed out, that I really agree with, (being described as I understood what he was saying) is that if you look at the big picture of LDS history as a tapestry of events that provide a general storyline, it is remarkable and faith-promoting. Yet if you look at some of the individual “threads” having to do with specific events, they can be disconcerting, particularly if viewed out of context.

I agree with that!

Yes there are lots of very disruptive things in LDS Church history, but those who take a contextual look at the overall picture, including a deep search into the content within the scriptures brought forth through the instrumentality of Joseph Smith, it becomes obvious that a higher intelligence was directing the movement despite the follies of EVERY human being involved in the restoration movement.

The Student Review did a review on this topic recently. John Dehlin of MormonStories also did.

Surprisingly, John Dehlin gave a relatively positive review of the church’s current attempt to address these essays that address controversial historical issues which can be found here. I thought I would make a few observations as well.

In my comments section the other day I admitted to a commenter that I waffle back and forth in whether my comments about the church are charitable or condemning depending on which side of the bed I wake up on.

Be advised that I did not sleep well last night and I exited the bed from the wrong side today. Luckily Mrs Watcher had already left the bed, or my anxious exit therefrom might have  left a disgruntled set of tread marks across her pointed but loveable little forehead.

While I agree with most critics that this attempt is a step in the right direction, by virtue of the fact that the attempt is being made at all, and in the sense that the church now desires to publicly and officially address these issues.

Nevertheless, I am absolutely shocked and horrified by some of the disingenuous content within the essays and I think it will backfire on the church with regard to those members who are not sheeple and who don’t check their brains at the door when entering the church and who actually have knowledge of the cursory facts.sheeple2

Let me show you a few of the things that give me indigestion in the essays.

First let me observe that the essays read much more like content created by a PR department than a knowledgeable and authoritative prophet of God.

RACE AND THE PRIESTHOOD:

Here is a quote that alerts the informed reader that a big pile of BS is about to be served.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was restored amidst a highly contentious racial culture in which whites were afforded great privilege

The above apologetic statement is of course, true, but should be completely irrelevant, and is meant to soften the view of readers about the past practices and doctrines of the LDS Church in general, and Brigham Young specifically. When a prophet of God is getting their marching orders from God, the culture of the time really doesn’t matter because God does not concern himself with being politically correct.

A true prophet doesn’t either when delivering a message from God.

As the “prophet” of the church that integrated the racial doctrines and practices into the church relative to blacks and the priesthood, the essay attempts to explain that Brigham was the poor victim of a racial culture and he was therefore understandably justified in the false racist policies that he implemented.

The problem with the supposition is that Joseph Smith was also raised in a “highly contentious racial culture”, yet he was unaffected by it and allowed all men of all races to enjoy priesthood privilege.

Therefore, the suggestion that Brigham Young understandably erred in this area because of strong cultural pressure,  in my opinion, does not  provide an acceptable excuse for the second president of the church and most of those that followed him. The first president of the church had already set the standard, according to revelation from God, in the midst of a “highly contentious racial culture”.

To imply that Brigham Young was simply a misguided product of the culture he lived in is ludicrous. He was living right there in Kirtland under the watch of Joseph Smith when Elijah Abel and other Blacks were ordained to the priesthood. He watched as Elijah Abel was called and ordained as a member of the elite 3rd quorum of the Seventy.

Who are we kidding?

Furthermore, Joseph Smith proclaimed that people are called to the priesthood by the gift of prophecy. Elijah Abel had not only the endorsement of Joseph Smith, but also of the Lord, by virtue of his ordination. If not, then the revelatory credibility of the foundation of the LDS restoration must be called into question.

The culture of the time is not the reason that Brigham  Young created a discriminatory doctrine against Blacks. Brigham’s heart was apparently full of hate toward the Black Man. All you need to do is read the words of Brigham Young and it is evident that he despised the black man.

The issues was not simply a cultural issues. Brigham’s rejection of what Joseph had revealed about priesthood is the issue and Brigham Young’s status as a living prophet is the issue.

Brigham Young new full well that the Lord had not restricted the priesthood to the Blacks during the ministry of Joseph Smith.

The truth is that Brigham Young had a deep rooted issue with Blacks. He probably had these racial issues long before he joined the church. It is even possible that these issues had something to do with his decision to hold off on joining the church for two years after the gospel message was delivered to him.

The Blacks and the Priesthood issue has always been a doctrinal issue. If, in fact it was primarily a  cultural issue during the ministry of Brigham Young, as the article suggests, then the validity of Brigham Young’s calling as the President of the Church and the level of inspiration he was laboring under is the real issue in question .

The truth is that Brigham Young was a loose cannon that rejected some of the foundational doctrines and practices established by Joseph Smith and divine revelation. He had been a Free Mason with some pretty strong racial prejudices long before he joined the church.

Albert Pike was also a prominent Freemason at the time. He is believed to have been “..influential in the early Ku Klux Klan, being named in 1905 as “the chief judicial officer” of the Klan… He was cited as the leader of the Arkansas Ku Klux Klan” as well.

I believe that racist Masons like Albert Pike probably had a very strong influence on Brigham Young. It cannot be denied that Brigham’s belief about race paralleled those of Pike and the Ku Klux Klan.

PLURAL MARRIAGE AND FAMILIES IN EARLY UTAH

This is another essay that avoids the real issue and attempts to intoxicate the reader with a bunch of blue smoke.

To the credit of the church PR committee that put their stamp of approval on it, the article begins with this declaration:

The Bible and the Book of Mormon teach that the marriage of one man to one woman is God’s standard, except at specific periods when He has declared otherwise.

That declaration is true, but very misleading, because the First Presidency of the church has not always taught what the Bible and Book of Mormon teach on the topic. For decades the church was teaching contrary to the word of God regarding marriage. The Church taught that a special form of Celestrial polygamy was the Lord’s standard for those desiring admittance in the highest kingdom of heaven.

Brigham Young must be turning over in his grave knowing that such a statement  is being endorsed by those who have succeeded him. He prophesied that if the practice was ever denied, the church would be damned.

He declared countless times that the only way for a man to be exalted in the celestial kingdom was to have multiple wives sealed to him. During Brigham Young’s watch, polygamy was the supreme marital standard that was taught, not monogamy.

The article conveniently omits that very well known fact.

I could go on and on about these essays and the fact that they are a real insult to a persons intelligence, but I shall avoid the temptation.

Tesla and HAARP

I am a huge Tesla fan and came across the following presentation on how HAARP evolved from his research

http://www.brasschecktv.com/page/25971.html

The Bonus Army

For history buffs that are always looking to increase their knowledge of our country’s history, I present this little tid-bit

How does God really feel about Government?

I recently got the following comment from a reader:

“Watcher,

I recently read a very good article I thought you might like. Here is the link: http://www.anti-state.com/redford/redford4.html

It shows from the Bible that Jesus was an “anarchist”. And it follows that His followers should be also.”

The article has some fantastic stuff in it that might cause some people to rethink the way they feel about government. The article seems to substantiate Verlin Anderson’s belief that Government is the Great and Abominable Church of the Devil.

One of the few  things I disagree with in the article is the statement that God does not pick the leaders of nations. The book of Daniel actually teaches that God sets up all of the leaders of nations good and bad. I am of the opinion that God has set up our current President of the US because of our wickedness. Our current Government has been put in place as a judgement against this nation.

The Cultural History of the Book of Mormon

Several high profile LDS bloggers have blogged about Daymon Smith’s series on the Book of Mormon. Because of this and the fact that a few of my readers have encouraged me to read it, I have suffered myself to read the first two pdf’s that he is giving away free… and I mean SUFFER!

The read has been so painful thus far that I am not sure if I can continue. I can find absolutely nothing faith-promoting in it.

Shortly into the first pdf it became apparent to me that Daymon does not believe the revelations contained in the D&C. He omits modern revelation as having any part in the way the content in the Book of Mormon is interpreted from what I can ascertain.

A little further into the pdf I had my next major epiphany about Smith.

Daymon Smith does not believe the Book of Mormon is an inspired revelation from God about the literal ancient inhabitants of America. This, of course, is my opinion and interpretation based on what I have read so far.

One of the major suppositions of the thesis is that the incorrect interpretations of the content in the Book of Mormon that the early members of the restored church were infected with, ( and passed down to us Morons) had infiltrated the church through the likes of people like Sidney Rigdon and Parley Pratt who had been falsely indoctrinated by people like Alexander Campbell and earlier protestant reformers and “restorationists”. Hence the name a “cultural” history of the Book of Mormon.

Naturally, since I am a died in the wool believer in modern revelation, and since God puts his stamp of approval on Sidney Rigdon and Parley Pratt as the most able teachers of doctrine, who were both called by revelation to teach in the school of the prophets, I consider Daymon’s characterizations of Sidney Rigdon and Parley Pratt to be pure bullshit.

(Denver Snuffer seems to love Daymon’s work which makes perfect sense to me)

A very subliminal secondary supposition hiding in the background of the context of Daymon’s work is that the very content of the Book of Mormon itself, also originated from American religious culture , not from God’s inspired Book of Mormon prophets.

Now I may be completely wrong in my assessment. If I am, it certainly will not be the first time I have misjudged something prematurely. I invite and even welcome contrary views with regard to Daymon’s thesis of examples can be provided. I have asked people who are high on his work to explain to me why they love it so much and why it is so profound yet none have been able to respond.

My opinion is that Daymon is a disgruntled ex-employee of the LDS Church that has a vendetta.

I suspect that his “Book of Mammon” is pretty good and pretty eye-opening, based on the unique, up close and personal perspective that Daymon had working within the beast, but I think that his current attempt to use the Book of Mormon to further his agenda is unfortunate. At times one gets the impression that the Book of Mormon is just a footnote in a larger attempt to show forth his historical knowledge of religious history.

It seems to me that anti-Mormon tactics have reached a new high (or low as the case may be) by being administered from within the church. There are now a lot of anti-mormon bloggers and authors that claim membership in the church and by so doing, they are able to gain a greater LDS audience.

John Dehlin is a perfect example. He uses his membership in the church to great advantage in spreading doubt about the authenticity of the restoration movement. Nevertheless, I give credit to John Dehlin for having the integrity to publicly admit he does not believe. It is my understanding that Daymon Smith still claims some degree of belief in the Book of Mormon, even though I have yet to find any serious evidence in his writings.

This brings me to my next topic

“..I have commanded him that he shall Pretend to no Other Gift”

For those who can read the Daymon Smith material on the Book of Mormon and other similar stuff, and still retain some degree of belief in the Book of Mormon, I believe that the natural course many of them have taken or will take, is to reject modern revelation and virtually everything else that Joseph Smith did.

The writings of David Whitmer after he left the church provide a strong argument that leads down that same rabbit hole. I have already blogged about the beliefs of David Whitmer and the content in his “Address to believers in the Book of Mormon”.

It is becoming increasingly common to see fringe Internet bloggers that write exclusively about the Book of Mormon and seldom if ever address the significance of modern revelation. I believe many of them have lost faith in modern revelation.

Many years ago I came upon a website with a very compelling doctrinal narrative that began to shake my own foundation regarding the extent of the calling of Joseph Smith because the logic and supporting scripture was do compelling.

The foundational premise of the site was based on the following passage from the Book of Commandments:

…and he [Joseph Smith, Jr.] has a gift to translate the book and I have commanded him that he shall pretend to no other gift, for I will grant him no other gift.”

When the Doctrine and Covenants was published two years later, the above verse was altered in a way that justifiably causes pause to many people. It was changed to allow Joseph’s ministry to take on a broader scope that would include translating the Bible, recieving a canon of scripture through personal revelation, restoring the law of the gospel, restoring priesthood, re-stablishing the church, building a temple, etc.

The website I came upon back in the day, provided an extensive diatribe that was built upon the premise suggested by the above verse in the Book of Commandments

I am going to provide the link to that website but I want to first WARN my readers that you could loose you testimony of anything Joseph did besides translate the Book of Mormon if you visit the site and if you are not well grounded deeply in the four standard works.

This onewhoiswatching blogsite is dedicated to studying deep issues that can be faith promoting if the reader has the necessary depth of doctrinal understanding and scriptural knowledge, HOWEVER, it can be faith-destroying for those that should stay in shallow waters.

Frankly, if it was not for the prophecies in the Old Testament that I discovered while researching the information contained in the Atonement Statute, which led me to the Biblical prophetic profile of who Joseph Smith really is, what is ministry was to be composed of, and what was to happen during his first commission, I very possibly would have bought into the scenario offered on that site. I spent quite some time debating the owner of the site over these issues.

Ok, after spending a long time trying to find the site, I realized that it must have been taken down.

I don’t know why the author of the site took the website down. I would like to think that he had an epiphany that he was wrong in his conclusions, but I was not born yesterday.

Anyway…  there is an amazing service called the “internet archive waybackmachine” that can provide a saved version of defunct webpages.

Here is the link to the webpage that claims Joseph Smith was never commissioned to do anything except translate the Book of Mormon.

Again, unless you have a sure foundation in scripture, the site can be dangerous to your understanding of Joseph Smith’s mission.

https://web.archive.org/web/20101125071609/http://jsfellowship.com/

Ok now. If you have made it to the end of this post, you’re reward is the link to the next installment of the current series.

It has to do with Joseph Smith’s prophetic letter to N. C. Saxton informing him and the world, that the Gentiles had already broken the everlasting covenant and were about to do it again, causing the heavens to be sealed shut until the Marvelous Work begins.

Enjoy

saxton final

BTW some of the links contained in the pdf to the Saxton letter on the Joseph Smith Papers site have mysteriously been changed since I last addressed the topic.. you may need to do a key word search if you want to read the entire content being reference.


Miscellaneous Musings 2/11/2014

February 11, 2014

Miscellaneous Musings Number 2/9/2014

I have been physically and mentally sidetracked from working on my current series for quite some time, doing some traveling and other things and not able to think much about, or work much on the current Snuffer series or the final post on Content and Context. I am hoping to get back in the saddle soon and get focused writing again… however I am considering publishing a book as an alternative to, or in conjunction with posting on a blog.

One of the things that has occurred to me is that when information is given out for free it is not appreciated and consumed by as many people. I recall hearing BRM state that as long as missionaries gave out Book of Mormons for free, people did not value them or attach a perceived value to them. The books were quickly discarded or they just accumulated dust sitting on the bookshelf.

Once missionaries began charging  for them, although fewer books were dispersed, significantly more people began to read the book, value it, and take it seriously. That is the downside of blogging in my opinion. It is interesting how many people will peruse and purchase a book but would never read a blog with the same content.

Sad, but true..

There are many successful authors that, IMHO, charge exorbitant amounts for their books, with content that would not be nearly as widely read if they simply provided all of their research for free on the internet. Although I used to look disparagingly  upon the practice of publishing doctrinal books and charging for information, I am now beginning to rethink things.

Perhaps the psychology behind the strategy successfully gets people to evaluate a message that they would otherwise not value or invest the time to consider if it was provided freely.

Current Events and Thoughts

There are  numerous current events that are worthy of note as well as a few other things that have been on my mind. Some of the news events and issues that I am going to comment on have been brought to my attention by commenters on this blog.

Faith vs Works

Recently a commenter challenged my readers to read Romans. Mrs Watcher and I love reading all of the standard works and feel that each of them have a unique spirit about them. We love reading the New Testament. There is such a powerful spirit contained in the New Testament. While reading Romans I began to think about some of my other favorite New Testament scriptures and it occurred to me just how important passages in the New Testament have been in helping me to interpret passages from the Book of Mormon.

I have written two of my favorite scriptural passages below. One from the New Testament and the other from the Book of Mormon. There was a time when I did not see these two passages as saying the same thing because I allowed my LDS indoctrination to color how I interpreted the passage and I considered the Book of Mormon to be more enlightened than the Bible. Since that time, I have had events take place in my life that have caused me to get back to the basics of Biblical Christianity and I have begun to cherish and value the Bible as the doctrinal baseline from which to interpret the Book of Mormon.

I now interpret the two passages below to be in complete harmony with each other.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Eph 2:8-9

“For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” 2 Nephi 25:23

I think many Latter day Saints have been guilty of assuming that 2 Nephi 25:23 is saying that if we do everything that we possibly can, to keep the commandments and do good works, then we will qualify for that additional  grace of God to pick up the slack and to cover the remaining portion of what we are unable to do for ourselves. I have attempted to depict this erroneous interpretation in the first graph below.

I have been guilty of viewing the Book of Mormon passage that way. I am now of the opinion that such an interpretation is arrogant and erroneous.

I believe Nephi was actually making the same point that Paul  was making. No matter what we can do or how much we do,  it is still 100% by the grace of God that we are saved.

 grace graft

 Converted Jews are to Gather to America!

Thanks to some interrogation from Ryan I was forced to dig up a quote that I had neglected to put in some past comments as well as the upcoming post on the establishment of the latter day Kingdom of the Jews. I am grateful for the nudge because I have now included it in the upcoming post and it is an incredibly important quote. Here it is for those who did not read the comment and don’t want to wait for the post to read it.

“We had a letter from Elder Hyde, a few days ago, who is in New Jersey, and is expecting to leave for England as soon as Elder Page reaches him. He requested to know if converted Jews are to go to Jerusalem or to come to Zion. I therefore wish you to inform him that converted Jews must come here.” (HC 4:231 approx October 1840)

One of the things Orson Hyde is remembered for is his dedicatory prayer for the city of Jerusalem in the Old World. Many saints falsely assume that the Hyde had been authorized and commissioned by  the Lord through Joseph Smith to dedicate the land of Jerusalem in the Old World for the gathering of the Jews but such is not the case.

Here is a little history regarding Hyde leading up to the above quote that will hopefully provide some context-

a) When Oliver Cowdery and other Latter Day Saint missionaries preached in Kirtland in late 1830, Hyde spoke publicly against the “Mormon Bible.” However, when his former minister, Sidney Rigdon joined the church, Hyde investigated the claims of the missionaries for three months, and was baptized by Rigdon on October 30, 1831. Although I don’t begrudge Orson’s initial rejection of the Book of Mormon, I think it is part of a pattern of confusion that he struggled with.

b) After joining the church and doing missionary work, Orson Hyde was in a personal state of apostasy at the time he overheard Joseph Smith speaking to Heber C Kimball about opening foreign missions in 1837. This was during the “Kirtland Apostasy” that had to do with the failure of the Kirtland Safety Society. Upon hearing about the opportunity to help establish foreign missions, he excitedly offered contrition for his murmurings  and obtained forgiveness and permission to accompany Kimball in the effort.

While Heber was being set apart for his mission, Orson Hyde walked into the room. Upon hearing what was happening, Orson was moved to repent, for he had been among the leaders of the Church caught up in the spirit of speculation and criticism of Joseph Smith. He acknowledged his faults, asked forgiveness, and offered to accompany Heber on his mission.”

(The apostolic mission with Heber C. Kimball to Great Britain in 1837 to 1838 was credited in bringing thousands of converts to the faith.)

c) After he returned from that mission Apostle Hyde quickly went into apostasy again. Section 112 testifies that the entire quorum of the twelve were struggling and were”unconverted” to the gospel in July of 1837  .It is fascinating to realize that God was using an apostate quorum of apostles do “something new for the salvation of the church” in taking the preparatory gospel to the nations. It was during that period in which the twelve were called to establish foreign missions.

Apostle Thomas B. Marsh, the president of the quorum of  the Twelve was so concerned about the apostate condition of his brethren of the Twelve and their commission to take the gospel to the nations that he petitioned Joseph  Smith to get a revelation regarding the state of his brethren. This resulted in section 112 which admonishes Marsh to:

“..pray for thy brethren of the Twelve.  Admonish them sharply for my name’s sake, and let them be admonished for all their sins, and be ye faithful before me unto my name.

13  And after their temptations, and much tribulation, behold, I, the Lord, will feel after them, and if they harden not their hearts, and stiffen not their necks against me, they shall be converted, and I will heal them.”

Ironically, President Marsh himself would jointly apostatize with Orson Hyde within a little over a year after Section 112 was given. Marsh and Hyde would both accuse Joseph Smith of organizing a secret combination to support the heads of the church against the unbelieving gentiles. Other accounts claim that the “Danites” plundered and harassed anyone that was not a member of the church..

Upon returning from Britain, during a period of persecution and internal dissension, Hyde wrote that he felt God was no longer with the church” and apostatised again.  “He left the church on October 19, 1838 with Thomas B. Marsh, the presiding member of the Twelve. Marsh explained the reasons for their dissent in an affidavit which he and Hyde signed on October 24, 1838 in Richmond, Missouri. These included their contention that the Mormons had organized into a company known as the Danites, “who have taken an oath to support the heads of the church in all things that they say or do, whether right or wrong” and that Mormon and Danite vigilantes had burned and looted non-Mormon settlements in Daviess County.[5] Marsh and Hyde also claimed that Joseph Smith planned to “to take the State, & he professes to his people to intend taking the U.S. & ultimately the whole world.”

The testimony of Marsh and Hyde added to the panic in northwestern Missouri and contributed to subsequent events in the 1838 Mormon War.” Hyde was disfellowshipped because of his disaffection.

d) Hyde would once again “repent” and once again be called to preach the gospel in foreign lands. This time his ministry would include going to Jerusalem. He was called jointly  with John Page by a conference of leaders of the Church. The calling came in a meeting held on April 6th 1840. (Although Page never made the journey, Hyde would laber from April 1841 to December of 1842.)

Here is the beginning of the letter drafted by the conference:

“To all people unto whom these pres ents shall come.—Greeting.

Be it known that we the con stituted authorities of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, as sembled in conference, atNauvoo, Han cock county and State of Illinois, on  this, sixth day of April, in the year of  our Lord, one thousand, eight hundred  and forty, considering an important  event at hand, an event involving the  interest and fate of the Gentile nations  throughout the world. From the signs  of the times, and from declarations con tained in the oracles of God, we are  forced to come to this conclusion.

The Jewish nation have been scat tered abroad among the Gentiles for a  long period; and in our estimation, the  time of the commencement of their return to the Holy land, has already arrived.”

In my opinion, the “holy land” that the scattered Jews were to gather to was the Land of America, not the Jerusalem of the Old World. Both the Doctrine and Covenants and the Book of Mormon had identified America as the land that God had given to ALL of the children of Abraham in the latter days. This is why Joseph made the following clarification to Orson Hyde

“We had a letter from Elder Hyde, a few days ago, who is in New Jersey, and is expecting to leave for England as soon as Elder Page reaches him. He requested to know if converted Jews are to go to Jerusalem or to come to Zion. I therefore wish you to inform him that converted Jews must come here.” (HC 4:231 approx October 1840)

The following spreadsheet shows many of the Book of Mormon prophecies regarding the latter day restoration of the Jews:

http://onewhoiswatching.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/jews-gather-in-last-days.xlsx

It points out that:

a) The Jews do not gather in the last days until AFTER they begin to Believe in Christ

b) They gather to America, not the Old World

c) They are grafted into the Latter day Saint Church

Bottom-line: The latter day saints represent the re-establishment of the Kingdom of the Jews! More on this in the next post.

Strangely enough, Orson Hyde dedicated the land of Jerusalem in the Old world about a year later for the gathering of the scattered remnants of Judah, “according to the predictions of the holy Prophets“:

“..arrived in this place to dedicate and consecrate this land unto Thee, for the gathering together of Judah’s scattered remnants, according to the predictions of the holy Prophets — for the building up of Jerusalem again after it has been trodden down by the Gentiles so long, and for rearing a Temple in honor of Thy name..”

I am of the belief that Orson Hyde was not commissioned to dedicate the Old World Jerusalem for the gathering of Judah. I believe he was very confused and errant in doing so. His actions have greatly affected the trajectory of the mindset of the leaders of the church in future generations.

Many scholars have pointed out that the gathering of the  ashkenazi jews that has been financed by the Rothchilds in the Old World is a scam and that they are not even the authentic Jews mentioned in the Bible. Fortunately, the Book of Mormon reveals the mystery of who the real Jews are.

As Sir Lancelot would say,

C’est Moi!

It is possible that Hyde never got the instructions contained in the letter sent by Joseph Smith.

Orson Hyde had NOT been commissioned to dedicate the Old World Jerusalem for the gathering of the remnants of Judah. Here is what his commission consisted of:

He was to be an ” agent and representative [of the church] in foreign lands, to visit the cities of London,  Amsterdam, Constantinople and Jeru salem; and also other places that he  may deem expedient, and converse with  the priests, rulers and Elders of the  Jews, and obtain from them all the in formation possible, and communicate  the same to some principal paper for  publication, that it may have a general circulation throughout the United States.”

Clearly, Hyde’s commission was to converse with priests, rulers and Elders of the Jews and obtain information for a publication. The commission did not include dedicating the land of Jerusalem for the gathering of the Jews. The dedicatory prayer was Orson Hydes own idea based on a vision that he claimed to have.

His decision to dedicate the land for the return of the Jews contradicted Joseph’s declaration that the  “converted Jews must come here.

A few years after Hyde returned from his second foreign mission to Jerusalem, he was found preaching false doctrine about the  last days and was corrected in private and then publicly by the prophet Joseph Smith. (See section 130)

Orson Hyde was a well meaning and enthusiastic person with good intentions. He labored much for the restored gospel and had much success in preaching the gospel, HOWEVER, it appears that he was very confused about a number of doctrinal issues as were many of the saints.

It should not surprise anyone that he took it upon himself to dedicate the Old World Jerusalem for the return of the scattered remnants of Judah, even though Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon and modern revelation all testify that the Jews are to gather to America in the last days after they  begin in Christ.

I would further suggest that we latter day Jews (saints) have never progressed past the stage of “beginning to believe in Christ”. We are still stumbling over the “lesser things” we have been given.

More on the re-establishment of the latter day Kingdom of the Jews when I continue on the current series.

True Prophets Can Utter False Prophecies

Deuteronomy 18:15-22 is a greatly misinterpreted section of the Old Testament.

There are countless websites dedicated to exposing the false prophecies of Joseph Smith. I have pointed out in previous posts that many of the accusations about false  prophecies are not false prophecies at all, they are simply misinterpretations of the scriptures that we LDS are guilty of making. Hence we bring about much of the criticism because of our inability to interpret our own scriptures correctly.

One of my favorite examples is Section 84:4. Mormon publications claim that verse is referring to the Jackson County Temple that was to be built in that generation. Naturally, it would have been a false revelation had the interpretation been accurate. Of course, the verse is actually referring to the Kirtland Temple and therefore the prophecy did come to pass, not only within that generation, but within four years of the prophecy.

He shall speak presumptuously

 Many of the anti-Mormon websites quote Deut 18:21-22 to provide Biblical proof that a true prophet is prophetically infallible and can never utter a false prophecy.  People interpret it to be stating that true prophets NEVER utter false prophecies. It reads thusly:

21  And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?

22  When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Some of these sites further suggest that if someone utters a false prophecy, he is a false prophet that should be put to death according to Old Testament law. They derive this supposed Old Testament law from verse 20:

20  But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die.

The assumption that Old Testament prophets were to be stoned to death for giving false prophecies is questionable in my opinion. Can anyone show me a scripture providing a second witness to that doctrine?

Can anyone provide an example of an Old Testament prophet being stoned for giving a false prophecy?

90% of the prophecies uttered by Old Testament prophets were about things that would happen decades and centuries later. Often after they were dead. Are to believe that people are waiting around for decades and even centuries to stone someone for telling a false prophecy according to Old Testament law?

Deuteronomy 13:1-5 is also used to justify putting a prophet to death for prophesying falsely however, a careful reading of those passages reveals that the sin that brings death is not a false prophecy but rather a false teaching that causes people to worship a false god. (those passages arguably also represent a prophecy pertaining to a latter day prophet, rather than a law)

My contention is that Deuteronomy 18:15-22 is not referring to a law. Rather, it is a prophecy about future events.

The “Two” who are Like  Moses

Another false doctrine that Mormon scholars derive from Deuteronomy 18:15-20 is that there is only one prophet in the last days that will be “like Moses“.  This causes disputations ab out who the real “one like Moses” really is. Because of this, many people reject the prophecies that declare Joseph Smith to be the one “like Moses” such as D&C 103:15-22 (2nd Nephi 3, D&C 107:92,  JST Genesis 50, etc.) in favor of the passages that declare Christ to be the one like Moses such as 1st Nephi 22:19-21, etc.

The truth is that Deuteronomy 18:15-22 actually speaks of two separate and distinct prophets that are typological to Moses. It refers first to Christ’s role as being like Moses. Then it speaks of Joseph Smith’s role of being like Moses.

Again, one of the keys to understanding Deuteronomy 18:15-22 is in realizing that it is a prophecy about the two separate and distinct prophets that would each be typological to Moses. One would not speak presumptuously, the other would.

The first prophet “Like Moses” referred to in verse 15 is obviously Christ. We know this from the following passages of scripture in the Book of Mormon:

19  For behold, the righteous shall not perish; for the time surely must come that all they who fight against Zion shall be cut off.

20  And the Lord will surely prepare a way for his people, unto the fulfilling of the words of Moses, which he spake, saying: A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.  And it shall come to pass that all those who will not hear that prophet shall be cut off from among the people.

21  And now I, Nephi, declare unto you, that this prophet of whom Moses spake was the Holy One of Israel; wherefore, he shall execute judgment in righteousness. (1st Nephi 22)

What many LDS prophecy scholars are not aware of is that verses 18-22 speak of ANOTHER last days prophet like Moses that is NOT Christ. In my opinion, it speaks also of Joseph Smith.

Unlike the first prophet mentioned in verse 15, this second prophet manifests some of the shortcomings of Moses’ ministry, including the fact that he makes a grievous mistake, just as Moses did when he spoke “presumptuously” and failed to sanctify the Lord when he struck the rock twice in Numbers 20:9-12!

The council given regarding these two prophets that are mentioned in Deut 18:15-22 is quite different. The passages command us to categorically “hearken” to the voice of Jesus Christ, the first prophet “like Moses” referred to in verse 15, because he never errors and he speaks as God (just as Moses was commanded to speak in behalf of God)

Verse 18 introduces a different last days prophet that is like Moses. This second prophet first speaks “all that [the Lord] shall command him” but then he eventually speaks “presumptuously“. Instead of being commanded to categorically hearken to his commands, the passages tell us to not be afraid of him when his prophecies don’t come true.

Many Mormons are afraid to entertain the possibility that Joseph Smith ever did anything wrong. They think it would be blasphemy to suggest such a thing.

Those that understand the atonemment statute can appreciate who this is referring to.

15  ¶ The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;

[Moses is prophesying of Christ here]

16  According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not.

17  And the LORD said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.

—–

18  I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. [Moses is prophesying of Joseph Smith here]

19  And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.

20  But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. [Moses is not giving a law to stone false prophets, he is foretelling about a last days prophet who will utter a false prophecy and then be put to death by angry men (see 2nd Samuel )]

21  And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken?

22  When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Monson Ordered to Appear on Fraud Charges

Most of you are probably aware that President Monson has been ordered to appear before a magistrate in England on fraud charges filed by a disaffected ex-Mormon who is disputing the fundamental teachings of religion. Most legal experts in England and America think it is unlikely that he will be extradited. (See also here and here. )

Although it is doubtful that he will appear in person and doubtful that anything significant of a legal nature will be resolved, I find it to be a significant sign of the times. One of the main players in getting the unusual and unlikely summonses to fruition is Tom Phillips, the managing director of MormonThink, which is an online publication which claims to provide a neutral perspective about Mormon History and Doctrine.

Tom is the ex-Bishop and Stake President that became disgusted when the brethren summoned him and his wife to the temple to receive the second anointing and nothing happened. Tom and his wife just sat in the temple waiting for Christ to show up, but it was a “no-show” event.  This caused Tom to begin re-evaluating the claims of the church and searching deeper into the history and doctrine of the church. He is now a seething anti-Mormon that has lost his family over his anger and apostasy from the church ( transcripts and or audios and videos of his ordeal can be see hear and hear and hear.

Denver Has Declared His Dispensation!

One of Snuffers loyal followers has pointed out that Denver has declared his dispensation. The following snippet is from Denver’s Orem talk:

“Now you tell me, you declare to me, what are your dispensations? (I have one, and Joseph had one, but do you have one also?)”

Interestingly, he seems to be using the Catholic definition for the term “dispensation” rather than the one revealed in LDS scripture. LOL

Perhaps Denver has received a special dispensation from Pope Francis. LOL

False Christs Commission False Prophets

About two and a half months ago I did a post regarding Matthew 24:23-24 and interpreted the passage to be inferring that the false prophets being spoken of by Christ, become so, by being visited and called to their ministry by a False Christ. I believe this represents the defining difference between people like Denver Snuffer and Christopher Nemelka.

Christopher Nemelka, in my opinion has not been deceived. Rather, he is an intentional deceiver. He has not been visited by any heavenly messengers, he is simply a very calculating charlatan who is intentionally deceiving people. He crafted his “sealed portion” with the intent to fool people. A good friend of mine recently found out that one of his associates has bought into the Nemelka scam.

Snuffer on the other hand, seems to sincerely believe that he has been visited and commissioned by Jesus Christ to teach the gospel and bring about Zion. In a future post I will demonstrate that the everlasting covenant between God and his people was rejected by the Jews in the meridian of time and broken by the Gentiles during the ministry of Joseph Smith. This is why it is impossible for people to be getting the second comforter from the true Christ until those who have been properly commissioned return to re-establish the broken covenant.

This is just one of many reasons why it is obvious that Snuffer has been deceived into thinking that he has received the second comforter and some special kind of dispensation.

Interestingly, his storyline years ago after writing the Second Comforter was that he was just an ordinary guy and that anyone could see the Savior.

That was his simple message.

Anyone can see Christ.

Since that time his books have become more controversial and his storyline has morphed and become much more directed at his own self importance and the fact that he is a special servant of the Lord who is faithfully teaching what God has sent him to teach.

He infers that he has a special calling and is here to officiate in the establishment of Zion. There will even be signs in the heavens that will testify to that fact that he is faithfully teaching what God has ordained him to teach:

 “You may also know by that sign that He has given to me the words I have faithfully taught as His servant.”

False Prophets Spawn other False Prophets

In the post I did a few months back I speculated that the false prophet  that is visited by a false Christ will spawn a host of followers that will begin bearing testimony that the false prophet is a true prophet. I also speculated that each of these testimony bearing followers will essentially become secondary false prophets. Here is an excerpt of what I speculated:

Another thing that has dawned on me recently is that when a charismatic person is visited by a false Christ and then begins giving their message, others become seduced by the same false spirit. Some may be visited by the same false Christ. Others are simply influenced by the seducing spirit.

Once seduced by the same spirit, they begin bearing a false witness to others that the false prophet is a true prophet.

When they do this, they are not intentionally telling a lie. They honestly feel like they have received promptings from the Holy Ghost and therefore, they feel like they are inspired to testify that the message of the false prophet is true, even though they don’t even understand what the message is ultimately going to be.

The apparently innocent, yet incorrect testimony that they bear, actually makes them a false prophet as well. That is very possibly why the passage refers to false prophets (plural) yet possibly having to do with the same spiritual movement.

In other words, Christ’s prophecy may not have been referring to lots of individual false prophets with differing messages. It could have been referring to a specific movement with lots of people bearing a false testimony about a false message from God.

The first false prophet begins accumulating passionate followers that begin bearing their testimonies that the message from the primary false prophet is true.

Everyone that begins bearing their testimony that a false prophet is a true prophet, becomes a false prophet also, along with the primary false prophet.”

Since Denver Snuffer was excommunicated there have been numerous followers of his that have begun making bold declarations about Denver being a true prophet that has seen Christ. Some have also testified that the General Authorities of the Church have NOT seen Christ. This of course has created a cancer that has begun to eat at the core foundational teaching of the Church, which is that the Current leaders of the Church are receiving direct revelation and direct visitations from God.

It has put the church in a very difficult situation in that they do not want to conduct another witch hunt like they did 30 years ago with the September Six and yet, if they don’t send a warning shot over the bow of the ship, the cancerous disease will escalate very quickly as more Snufferites begin bearing witness that God speaks to Denver and not to President  Monson or the Twelve.

The First High Profile Snuffer Follower is Excommunicated

This brings us to the next current event of interest. It appears as if the first high profile Snufferite has been excommunicated for publicly declaring that Snuffer speaks to God and the leaders of the Church don’t. He publicly declared (on the Internet) that Snuffer is the first prophet since Joseph Smith to speak to God since the death of Joseph Smith.

A fellow by the name of Brent Larsen apparently made the following declaration on the LDS Freedom Forum:

“I know there is a prophet on the earth again today, that it is Denver, and that he is the first I know of as of the death of Joseph. I know Denver is speaking the words given to him by my King.”

Brent has now become a martyr like Denver Snuffer and his excommunication will probably energize the Snuffer movement.

I was curious to see who Brent was and if he had posted any videos. I found the following video that is very possibly a video of him giving a lecture. I am not sure if it is him. It may be a different person with the same name. If any of the Snufferites that follow this blog know for sure, please let me know.

I believe my speculation is coming to fruition about the fact that we are now experiencing a growth in Snufferites that are testifying that Snuffer is a prophet. One of the breeding grounds for this Snufferite movement, besides the LDS Freedom Forum is Latter day Commentary which is run by an incredibly likeable guy named Tim Malone.

Tim is another high profile disciple of Snuffers who currently serves as a financial clerk in a Stake Presidency. One almost gets the impression that he is just baiting his priesthood leaders to pull him into a church court and yet he repeatedly acknowledges that his first allegiance is to the church, not Snuffer. He claims he will discontinue his blog if asked to by his Stake President.

Another person who credits Snuffers book, the Second Comforter in helping him in his path to seeing the Father and the Son, is Daniel Rogers who has published a website telling of his communion with the heavens.

Perhaps one of the most prolific Snuffer shills is the person that uses the screen name of Log. Log has invested an inordinate amount of time and energy  trying to persuade people to come unto Denver. Log is the one that motivated me to do my Snuffer series.

Tim Malone,  Brent Larsen and Log represent the tip of the iceberg when it comes to secondary prophets testifying of the divine commission given to Snuffer and/or drawing people into discourse about Snuffer. There are many more people bearing witness of Snuffer and they are cross pollinating on various blogs and forums. The movement is growing.

It is heartbreaking to watch the warning about false prophets given by Christ in Matt 24, unfold before our very eyes. I believe this is a testimony that we are living in the last generation and things are about to happen in the earth.

The Folks Over at the Interpreter are Chicken-Shits

I have somewhat of a love hate with the Mormon scholars over at the interpreter. On the one hand, I feel their intentions are good with regard to their desire to defend the faith. Every once in a while, one of their scholars busts out an article with some valid and profound snippets of truth worth reading. On the other hand, I feel they focus way too much on defending the modern “church” and the “brethren” instead of defending the restored gospel as it was originally revealed through the prophet Joseph Smith.

I have been critical of them for many other reasons I won’t belabor this post.

I must admit that I am currently pretty pissed at them because I presented to them, on a golden platter, the opportunity to use their forum to bring to light a hidden truth that slam dunks Denver Snuffer for disrespecting the historicity of Section 110, but they hesitated to do so and a valuable opportunity was lost unto them.

I believe the documentation I have provided from the Inspired Version of the Bible about  John the Baptist being Elijah the Tishbite proves beyond dispute, the veracity of the historicity behind the event spoken of in Section 110.  110 is a true revelation and the prophecy contained in 110:14-16 had indeed come to pass as declared.

Long before I posted the section of my current Snuffer series documenting how the Inspired Version of the Bible reveals that John the Baptist was the transmigration of Elijah the Tishbite, I contacted the folks over at the Interpreter and invited them to critique my findings.

My desire was to involve scholars within mainstream Mormonism in the process of evaluating and giving credibility and greater exposure to this revolutionary information.

I stressed to them that I felt that the Inspired Version of the Bible offers a compelling way to prove, that Section 110 and the prophetic content thereof was true and had indeed come to pass.

I noted that if my findings were true, it would prove that some of the current teachings in the church about section 110 were not accurate, but more importantly, it would show that section 110 was valid and the prophecies contained therein had in fact been fulfilled. It would also demonstrate why the Lord had commanded Joseph and Oliver to keep the Vision and Prophecy in section 110 a secret.

This is a snippet from my initial email to the folks over at the MormonInterpreter:

I am getting ready to post the last part of my rebuttal to Denver Snuffer. It has to do with what I consider to be extremely compelling evidence to prove the historicity of section 110. Nevertheless, it is somewhat controversial with regard to how it characterizes the trajectory of the church from 1836 onward.

If you or any of the apologists that write for your organization would have any interest in reviewing it prior to it being posted, I would be happy to provide it for that purpose. I would gladly review any critique that is offered, I would even be willing to post the critique along with the paper if desired.

Even if your scholars would prefer to not provide any public comment, but would like to review and critique it privately, that would be fine with me. I would certainly take any criticism very seriously and reevaluate my suppositions if any critique was offered.

Thank you for your consideration

Watcher “

Their initial response to my email indicated an interest on their  part to review what I had found:

Their response was:

“It sounds like it might be one that the board might want to see. You can submit it and I’ll pass it on with your comments here”

I therefore sent them the initial draft of what I had written with this message:

Here is the portion of my last rebuttal point that we have previously discussed. As I said in our last communication, I welcome any credible feedback from your board members or participating Apologetic Scholars regardless of whether it is positive or negative.

My core supposition is that the Inspired Version of the Bible reveals the true identity of John the Baptist and by so doing, proves beyond question that section 110 is true and that Elijah the Tishbite did in fact fulfill the prophecy of Malachi per the declaration in section 110.

 If my thesis can be proven to be in error, I will not post my paper. However I am so confident that the supposition is accurate, that I am willing to allow your entire organization to scrutinize it and respond to it before I post it If you decide to afford yourselves of this opportunity. I would invite your staff and associated scholars to make every effort to debunk it. I don’t think it can be done.

It is my belief that the writings of Denver Snuffer as contained in his book, Passing the Heavenly Gift, has thrown many Latter day Saints into a crisis of faith regarding the veracity of Section 110. I think the current interpretations that are commonly taught in the church are not altogether accurate and have therefore put the church in a vulnerable doctrinal position in defending the historicity of Section 110. I think that if something is not done in a timely manner, to challenge Snuffers attack in a credible way, the fallout from his criticisms will possibly continue to grow at an alarming rate.

I believe that section 110 plays a critical and central role in the LDS restoration movement and Mormon theology. It interconnects with so many other LDS scriptures and historical events of the restoration movement, that destroying it’s credibility potentially has far reaching consequences, and may ultimately have a domino effect with a devastating impact on many people’s faith in the LDS restoration.

I believe it needs to be responded to in a timely, powerful, authoritative, and decisive manner.

There is some dark irony in a person claiming to have been taught by Christ and angels who is essentially rejecting the account of Joseph and Oliver being taught by Christ and angels in the account contained in section 110. If 110 is clearly shown to be true, it brings into question, Snuffers claims about his own personal visitations from true messengers.

 I believe that by putting the historicity of this very important section in question, Snuffer will ultimately undermine countless people’s faith in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ as his following continues to grow. While the church had no other option than to expel him, his martyr status is attracting a lot of attention and I think it may be working to his advantage to some degree in furthering his movement.”

After their board reviewed the paper they responded with the following comment:

“Watcher – Having looked at it, I think it is more than we would want to post in the comments. However, you might want to consider a different introduction and submitting it as a paper for Interpreter. It would go through the review process and you would know what the comments would be.”

I was a little bit taken back by that response.

I am not sure what they meant by posting in the comments. All I was asking them to do is to send the draft to all of their scholars and asking for them to provide any reasons why they would disagree or agree with the evidence and conclusions I had made. I was giving them the opportunity to debunk the thesis or respond with a positive conclusion.

I was frankly a little surprised that they would invite me to submit the article to be published on their forum. This invitation prompted the following response from me:

“Since when did the Interpeter begin accepting papers from anonymous, un-credentialed, non-members of the church? LOL”

They replied thusly:

“Certainly not anonymous. However, uncredentialed and non-member isn’t an issue. Quality of thought is important, not credentials. However, it would require loss of anonymity.”

 Quality of thought is what is important but loss of anonymity is required?

How important is quality of thought if loss of anonymity is required before the paper will be reviewed?

Why would an organization such as the Interpreter refuse to publish a potentially game changing doctrinal thesis for scrutiny simply because the author desired to be anonymous?

Here I was, offering a doctrinal thesis of ginormous significance and they were preoccupied with finding out who the author of the thesis is!?!?

Why the h#*! should it matter who wrote the freakin thesis?

“Quality of thought” is the important thing, right?

Truth is the bottom-line.. right?

Only an ego-centric organization would be stuck in that kind of prideful mindset of not being willing to evaluate a thoughtful thesis unless a personality could  be associated with it.

The truth is that the world of scholarship has reached a point where they are unable to judge a message without judging the messenger.

Admittedly, another reason they possibly put up a road block in allowing the paper to be published on their forum probably has more to do with the fact that they will not publish anything that embarrasses the church and challenges the existing doctrinal storyline being taught, which the thesis admittedly does.

Nevertheless, all I was asking was for the folks at the Interpreter to do, is simply shoot the thesis out to their large body of scholarly contributors and invite them to evaluate the doctrinal accuracy and veracity of the thesis. I was happy to allow them to critique and debunk my findings if they could. They could have even done their critique in private without bringing embarrassment to the church but they declined.

They ultimately declined by putting up stumbling-blocks.

For that reason, if any of you over at the interpreter are reading this post, I just want you to know that I think you passed up on an incredible opportunity to participate in bringing to light some game-changing doctrinal information.

You could have helped to expose the true level of inspiration found in PTHG and the author thereof.

You could have helped to bring to light information that can help people that are having a crisis of faith regarding Section 110, as a result of PTHG.

You may have been helpful in bring some of the Snufferites out of the deception they are involved in.

You could have been instrumental in helping the church self correct with regard to what they currently teach about Section 110.

I just want you to know that if you passed on the opportunity to bring this information to light because you are more concerned about not embarrassing the Church about the erroneous doctrine they teach, than you are about searching out and publishing the truth, you are a bunch of chicken-shits.  ;)


I have a capsule concern that is bothering me immensely

January 30, 2014

I got an amazing email today that began with this

I have a capsule concern that is bothering me immensely. I am not looking to you for all answers; but, those answers where I am blank and not visited with, I inquire.

I will now provide some of this person’s comments followed by my responses:

First of all, since the second part of the preparatory Priesthood is gone, that leaves the Levitical order left, which is all right because of the ability to spread the gospel and baptize (supposedly bringing the everlasting covenant). But in 1923, good ole’ Heber decides to change the manner of conferral to ordaining to office first.  Then Good ole’ David decides that that isn’t right and smoothly changes it back to the way it was. Since my father was born in 1922 and fell under the auspices of the new arrangement, was his my baptism even valid in 1963 when he may not have had a true ordinance of conferral upon him? Therefore all 50 people I baptized in Florida from 1975-77 may not be valid; and my sons as well?”

You bring up a fascinating question that I have pondered as well.

I honestly don’t know the answer for sure. My gut feeling is that the technicality of how the levitical priesthood was transferred incorrectly is probably not much of an issue. First of all, one needs to remember that baptism under that authority is basically the law of moses version of baptism that only points us to the need for baptism from the higher priesthood. ( Just as the “more righteous” portion of  Nephites that were not destroyed in 3 Nephi needed to be re-baptized by the higher authority, even though they had previously been baptized by Nephi. )

All of us will need to be re-baptized when the servants return, regardless of whether we have had a valid preparatory baptism.

The other “hint” that may shed some light on this, that I will be addressing sometime in the last part of the current series, is that according to the allegory in the Book of Jacob in the Book of Mormon, the transition of taking the preparatory gospel to the “outcasts of Israel” and the “dispersed of Judah” shortly after the Gentiles rejected the “fulness” of the Gospel, resulted in keeping the roots alive in the church until the Marvelous Work and a Wonder begins with the servants returning and the additional books of scripture coming forth.

My feeling is that the taking of the lesser gospel to the world and keeping the roots alive, includes two things.

a) Nourishing the latter day church with the knowledge of the gospel contained in the Book of Mormon and the D&C (& JST Bible)

b) The authority of the Levitical priesthood in orchestrating missionary work and taking the message of the Gospel to the world

If in fact both of those things are part of keeping the roots alive, then that would indicate that the church does not lose the lesser priesthood before the Marvelous Work begins.

Lastly, I believe the following prophecy in D&C 13 probably applies to the final offering of righteousness that takes place in the 3rd watch (which could possibly be characterized of the completion of the offering in righteousness that took place in the 2nd watch)

UPON you my fellow servants, in the name of Messiah I confer the Priesthood of Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the Lord in righteousness.

Next observation from the email:

I understand we are under condemnation for changing the ordinance, but what is “breaking” the everlasting covenant mean? We changed the manner of baptism by eliminating confessing and committing to an audience, and the wording changed from “authority” to “commissioned”, so would breaking be because of Heber’s denunciation of the conferral process? These have serious ramifications you can see. Why would the restoration process, and the preparing the world for the second coming be shut off at the surface and be eliminated all together when the worls needs to be prepared and gathered?

It quite literally means the everlasting covenant has been broken. It is no longer in effect. We are currently upheld by MERCY and the preparatory Gospel and the lesser law, instead of the GRACE of the everlasting Gospel.

The everlasting gospel covenant between God and his people has been broken… Period, end of story.

It was established with the Gentiles back in the New Testament and reconfirmed with the restored church for a short period of time, but it was broken when the Saints and the entire nation rejected the fulness by 1834.

I have been trying to get this point across for six years in my blogs but I think very few people believe me. My goal is to hammer this point home when I complete the current series. That is the whole reason why the servants must return to “restore the breach” (Isaiah 58:12)  “That mine everlasting covenant might be established;  That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world, and before kings and rulers.” (D&C 1: 22-23)

Although I am speculating that the Levitical priesthood is still on the earth, one can make a strong argument that the changing of the way the ordinance of priesthood was conferred was an integral part of changing the ordinance of baptism and that section 13 of the D&C was fulfilled after Josephs acceptable intercessory offering in the 2nd watch.

I[n] summary, I may not have been properly baptized, I have had no bestowal of the Holy Ghost, and I mock the blessing of all those I came in contact with acting in the name of the Lord. Did I agree to come in the Dark Ages of time when I feel I have learned so much concerning the acts of the heavens?

I have no idea what each of us agreed to relative to which period of time we came to earth. On the bright side, every time I am sitting in my warm home with Mrs Watcher, sipping a cup of hot chocolate and reading the four standard works that people have shed their blood to make available for me to read, study, search and ponder, I think of the Book of Mormon people and the adversity they faced. I think of the New Testament Saints and the persecution they experienced. I think of the darkened minds of the Utah pioneers that walked to Utah on Bloody feet to have the privilege of being oppressed by King  Brigham and his version of the preparatory gospel and I think of the poor souls that were enticed into the bondage of polygamy.  I have absolutely no desire to trade places with anyone. LOL ( am being a little light hearted and perhaps light minded in some of my remarks.. please don’t take offense.. I have to view things this way to keep my sanity. Obviously, the times ahead could be much harder than previous generations have experienced..)

You and I are living at the time when the everlasting gospel is about to shine forth in all of its glorious and ineffable effervescence.

We have been given the scriptures and study helps, such as word crunching software that saves us from an inordinate amount of time and brain damage and enables us, with the help of God’s Spirit, to find out what has happened in the past and what is about to take place.

While we don’t have the bonafide “constant companionship” that comes from the true “gift of the Holy Ghost“, we clearly have the light of Christ and possibly the intermittent visitations of the Holy Ghost. I can testify from personal experience that I have felt intelligence being downloaded into my heart and mind while searching God’s holy word.. I strongly suspect that you have experienced the same thing.

This is preparing us for the Marvelous Work!

Praise God almighty!

You and I are living in the time that all of the prophets have seen in vision and prophesied about.

“So I have the Book of Mormon and prayer without the Spirit preparing me to see the face of my Savior.  Can you see how this knocks my world askew since my nature has always been to analyze?

I certainly understand that all of this information is a shock to ones system and a real paradigm changer, but the good news if that the servants are coming with the GOOD NEWS and we have the opportunity to prepare our hearts and our minds to receive the servants.

We currently study and ponder the “lesser things” contained in the Book of Mormon but we are going to have the opportunity to read, study, search and ponder the “greater things” that are about to come forth.

You, my friend are among the very few of the latter day saints that even begin to comprehend what is about to take place. Count yourself blessed beyond description.

Your remarks demonstrate someone who has cared enough to search deeply in the history of the church and the word of God. I pray that God will continue to infuse you with the light that we all need to prepare our hearts and our minds for that which will probably take place in a very short period of time.

Keep praying, studying, searching, pondering and spiritually preparing..

oh… and keep Watching.


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