I suffer from severe ADHD at times.
I suppose I have always had the condition but it seems to be getting progressively worse as I age.
When I am in a zone I have the ability to hyper-focus, sometimes for days on end. At other times, I simply cannot force myself to think or write about a given topic.
After completing the second part of the current series, I completely lost interest in it. I have found over the years that if I am not “in the Zone”, it is best to just not write.
I apologize if there is anyone feeling frustrated that I am taking so long.
I just got an email from a very close friend who has been following the Denver Snuffer series, reading comments and reading other posts and blogs. He has asked numerous questions and also made some speculations that are pretty interesting. I thought it might be fun to share his questions and observations and my responses.
Answering some of them may take the wind out of my sails on future parts of the Snuffer series but it may also get me back in the zone to complete it. LOL
Here is content from his email in quotation marks followed by my comments
“Upon reading your paper and some of the comments and different blogs my mind was filled with questions! This note started as a listing of the questions, but then as I pondered it kind of evolved partly into some speculations thereon. I would love your thoughts and comments!”
“-Why was the Kirtland temple necessary? What was its purpose? (Apparently it had nothing to do with the endowment of power given at the Morley farm.) Was it only to test the faith of the Saints in building it?”
“-Why all the talk about finishing the temple with the patriarchal priesthood so God could fill it with power, when this didn’t appear to be necessary to receive the endowment of power in the end?”
The Kirtland Temple had two specfiic roles to play. One during the 2nd watch and one during the third watch.
The ultimate purpose of the Kirtland Temple in the third watch is for the first Laborers of the last kingdom and the other High Priests from the land of Zion and Kirtland to be filled with power from on high and to go forth from the temple into the world filling the last great commission, doing the last great missionary work at the time of the last restoration.
They will go forth for the last time binding up the law, sealing up the testimony and preparing the saints for the hour of judgment when they will be raptured up while the wrath of God falls upon the wicked.
The “higher” part of the “inner court” is to be used for the apostles who have become High Priests and have had the fulness of the priesthood restored to them. It was rarely if ever used during the second watch because the fulness of the priesthood had been lost by the time the time the temple was completed and dedicated. The church was functioning under a lesser priesthood at the time of the Dedication and section 110. Nevertheless, the higher part of the inner court was included in the construction of the Temple because it will be used when the servants return. (95:17)
The purpose of the Kirtland Temple in the 2nd watch was to provide the temple as an acceptable offering wherein an acceptable offering could be accepted per the terms of the atonement statute in Lev 16.
All of the OT statutes were enactments of future events, or, in other words, they are prophecies of future events. This is true of the atonement statute in Lev 16. It appears the atonement statute was given under the Levitical priesthood under the Dispensation of the Gospel of Abraham. In order for the literal fulfillment to take place in the latter days, the ushering in of the Dispensation of the Gospel of Abraham and the restoration of the Aaronic priesthood, had to take place.
The fulness of the Gospel focuses on grace and the eternal sacrifice and atonement of Christ who suffered as a God for mankind. But the law contained in the Old Testament often requires intercessory atonements by God’s servants, such as the intercessory atonement that Moses offered to prevent ancient Israel from being wiped of the face of the earth.
What most LDS are oblivious to is the fact that the latter day saints would also have been wiped off the face of the earth just like God was going to destroy ancient Israel, had it not been for a similar offering of God’s servants to stay the pending judgment that accompanies the rejection of the fulness of the gospel.
God acknowledged Joseph’s weeping for Zion and he accepted the offering of the Son’s of Levi in the Kirtland Temple. (not to be confused with the final acceptable offering that will be made by the Sons of Levi in the third watch)
Leviticus 16 informs us that because of the “uncleanness of the children of Israel” there would need to be a “reconciling” of the “holy place“, the “altar” and the “tabernacle of the congregation“. This was all referring to what took place in Kirtland with the Kirtland Temple. This is why the dedicatory prayer observes”...this is thy work, to fulfil that which thou hast spoken by the mouths of the prophets, concerning the last days“.
All of this incorporates a literal ordinance wherein a messenger was to “lay both of his ands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat”.
The events of the early LDS restoration movement and the building of the Kirtland Temple and the amazing events described in section 110 was all in fulfillment of the ancient prophecies spoken of by Moses , Isaiah, Daniel and other Old Testament Prophets.
Section 124 makes specific reference to an offering made by Joseph and one made by Sidney.
Leviticus informs us that one of the two goats must have his blood shed because of apostate Israel. That was obvously Joseph.
As pointed out in the Tribute to Sidney Rigdon, he was the second goat that was designated as the “scapegoat” that was to live while his associate died.
He was to have the sins of apostate Israel placed upon his head.
A recent commenter provided the content of a blessing pronounced upon brother Rigdon by Father Smith on September 13, 1835. In it the following promise was given:
“Thou shall receive an ordination not many days hence which shall surpass all human understanding; for they Redeemer shall come down and stand before thee-thou shalt see his face and hear his voice and great shall be thy rejoicing.”
That promise could not have been referring to the vision known as section 76 as it came many years after the fact and no ordination took place that we know of.
That promise was given shortly after consecration was forsaken, the fulness of the priesthood was lost and the fulness of the gospel was rejected.
The church and world were in a serious condition. I believe the above promise to Sidney Rigdon probably had to do with the scapegoat ordination wherein Sidney had the sins of apostate Israel placed upon his head by literal ordination as specified in the statute.
It was shortly after this time that Sidney would become relatively quiet for the space of about five years. He would later observe that he had not appear before the congregation in his true character for five years:
“It is with no ordinary degree of satisfaction, I enjoy this privilege this morning; want of health and other circumstances have kept me in silence for nearly the last five years. It can hardly be expected, that when the violence of sickness having used its influence, and the seeds of disease have so long preyed upon me, that I can rise before this congregation.
I am now come forth from a bed of sickness, and have enough strength left to appear here for the first time in my true character. I have not come before a conference for the last five years in my true character. I shall consider this important privilege sacred in my family history, during life. I hardly promise myself lungs to make this congregation hear me, I shall do the best I can, and the greatest can do no more.—”
It is interesting that Sidney says he has not been in his true character since about the time that he was to experience some kind of bizarre ordianation that “surpasses all human understanding”.
When rejected by apostate Isreal in Nauvoo during the succession crisis, Rigdon was led away “by the hand of a fit man” by the name of Brigham Young.
The temporal atonement/sacrifice of the two goats mentioned in Lev 16 was simply to stay God’s hand of judgment for four generations enabling the Dispensation of the Fulness of times to usher in the restoration of the fulness of the gospel/priesthood.
Daniel informs us that 70 weeks were determined upon the Latter day Saints in Kirtland to “finish the transgression” [of rejecting the fulness] and that a “reconciliation for iniquity” needed to take place resulting in the “everlasting righteousness” of the Savior to appear and “anoint the “most holy” place in the Temple, and accept the sacrifice of the Son’s of Levi preparatory to the final endowment of Power that would eventually take place in the third watch.
The temple is in many ways one of the central themes of modern revelation because it plays a central role in making possible the acceptable offerings that needed to be performed in the second the third watches.
Section 84 informs us that “beginning at this place, even the place of the temple, which temple shall be reared in this generation”, referring to the Kirtland temple, would be the begining of the “gathering of the saints“. This is just one of the reasons that temple was so crucial to the salvation of the church, because it represented the place where the official gathering would take place. This beginning of the gathering was literally fulfulled when, in section 110, Moses appeared and “committed unto us the keys of the gathering of Israel from the four parts of the earth“.
Shortly after that, foreign missions were established to gather Israel.
This amazing gathering plays a huge part in the mystical part of the parable in Jacob wherein the Lord of the Vineyard was going to destroy the vineyard but his servant pleaded with him to spare it.
That literally happened in Kirtland.
This is why Joseph said; God has revealed to me that something new must be done for the salvation of the church.
He was referring to the second part of the three part prophecy of Christ in 3rd Nephi wherein after the Gentiles reject the fulness of the gospel, it would be taken to the House of Isreal for a season which would keep the roots alive until eventually the gentiles would once again have the opportunity to repent when the third watch begins.
Joseph was not the only one who wept for zion. According to the Diary of Heber C. Kimball:
” Looking at the sufferings and poverty of the church, he [Rigdon] frequently used to go upon the walls of the building [Kirtland Temple] both by night and day and frequently wetting the walls with his tears, crying aloud to the Almighty to send means whereby we might accomplish the building.”
According to Rigdon, “when addressing the brethren upon the importance of building this house, spake to this effect: that we should use every effort to accomplish this building by the time appointed; and if we did, the Lord would accept it at our hands; and on it depends the salvation of the church and also of the world.”
Rigdon was not speaking of the spiritual salvation of the church and the whole world, it appears that he fully understood that God was going to destroy the entire world if the atonement statute was not enacted. This will be scripturally documented in a later part of the series.
“-same thing with the Nauvoo temple. Why couldn’t God simply restore the high priesthood at a farm or on a mountaintop as he did in Ohio?”
During times of prosperity when the church has the temporal means, the Lord requires the sacrifice of building physical temples. At the Morley Farm the church was in it’s infancy with only a few hundred members. Once the membership was sufficient, the commandment to build the temple was decreed. in cases of extreme poverty or emergency, these ordinances may sometimes be done on a mountaintop (see D&C 124:37–55)
Joseph Smith said “The rich can only get them in the Temple. The poor may get them on the Mountain top as did moses…”
“-What was the holy anointing ordinance given in the Kirtland temple? Apparently it is not a “saving” ordinance?”
Yes that is essentially my understanding. The anointing given to the high priests and other priesthood officers in the Kirtland Temple prior to the dedication, appeared to be the preparatory anointing in preparation to getting the endowment from on high to gather the strength of the Lords house and redeem Zion. That said, it does appear as if the fulness of the priesthood is part of the process of receiving the fulness of the Gospel. It appears that those that will inherit celestial glory do missionary work to those that will inherit a terrestrial glory.
“-what other ordinances were done in that [Kirtland] temple?”
The washing of feet, which was also a missionary preparation ordinance.
Sorry, there was not swapping of silly secret hand shakes and whispering silling things into each others ears or swearing by ones neck, etc., etc.
-Why is any temple necessary other then for doing baptisms for the dead (and perhaps as a means of uniting and consecrated a people)?
“-What is each lower office of priesthood for and why is each necessary? It’s interesting to read the section that describes the duties of the offices in the aaronic and patriarchal priesthood now. One might argue that the only purpose of the deacon and teacher is simply to help in perfecting the Saints. (And I suppose by magnifying this calling one might be “called” to the high priesthood.) A priest can baptize and administer the sacrament, In addition to perfecting the Saints.”
I have similar thoughts as yours on this issue.
“It’s interesting that an apostle/elder’s first and highest duty seems to be to baptize and administer the sacrament when priests can also do that. (Presumably, from a scriptural standpoint at least, anyone who can baptize can also baptize for the dead?)”
I think that is a really important observation and one that we need to ponder. Interesting how important baptism was back then and how it was one of the most important honors and responsibilities of apostles who were only to be doing missionary work in the mission field. Now it is almost unheard of to see an apostle baptising anyone or administering the sacrament, except for high profile conferences, etc.
what is that telling us about the latter day church?
“An elder can also clearly confer the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost. (This seems kind of odd if the full power and gift of the Holy Ghost only exists when the high priesthood is on the earth!).”
We are probably dealing with semantics here, but, technically, as I understand it, the baptism of fire and the holy ghost is decided and bestowed from above, not from below. I suspect that you are suggesting that predicated upon a proper water baptism and the “confirmation” of inviting the candidate to receive the Holy Ghost, the spiritual rebirth can take place if the Father decides to bestow it.
I think one of the great misconceptions in the church is that the so-called “gift of the Holy Ghost” that is bestowed by the corporate church is synonymous with the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost. It isn’t.
Apparently the high priesthood is necessary to a preach the gospel with power and to administer the law of consecration? (Does this mean that holders of the patriarchal priesthood who have the mandate/mission to preach the gospel to the world should do it without full power? Or that they should not undertake to fulfill the mandate until after having received the high priesthood?)”
Wow. What a great question. This relates to an answer I did not want to give several comments ago because it is a hard doctrine and I am not sure I fully understand the correct answer…
…but you bring up a point well worth pondering. Based on the comments in Joseph’s journal, one must question if the patriarchal priesthood ordianation from Peter James and John that the first two year period of missionary work was predicated upon, was fully capable of delivering the fulness of the Gospel in the full manner that the High Priests will be doing it. On the other hand, it was that patriarchal preaching, baptism and confirmation that made the Melchizedek endowment possible at the Morley Farm. 🙂
“So … It would appear that the purpose of all of these (aaronic and patriarchal) priesthoods is all about sanctifying the holders to prepare them individually to receive the high priesthood so that they can lead the entire people to a state of sanctification? “
Yes, service is the pinnacle of the priesthood stewardship and additionally, according to section 84, the purpose of the aaronic and patriarchal priesthoods is for priesthood holders to prepare and sanctify themselves by magnifying their priesthoods, so that they can be endowed with the Melchizedek endowment.
“This actually adds incredible depth to section 121 and the concept that you were only granted this priesthood (sanctification) in order to bring others along to this same blessing of sanctification / Zion community, i.e. it is not for your personal benefit, it is only for you to serve others and bring them along. Zion is by definition a community i.e., a “united order”! I suspect it may actually be impossible to be fully sanctified as an individual and might only be achieved as a group, even if a small one, and living the law of consecration. This is the full meaning or end game of “at-one-ment”!
Amen… he that is greatest of all is the servant of all…..
“Therefore, there is no reason why the second comforter would be randomly given to individuals, because the purpose is to sanctify an entire people by a) preaching the gospel with power, b) providing the ordinances by the power of the priesthood, including the baptism of fire, and c) perfecting the Saints and sanctifying an entire community so as to be able to see the face of God.!?!?”
Actually, you are hitting on a key point brought out in modern revelation that makes most peopl feel really uncomfortable, but yes. Once the church has been established, there are many aspects of it that are community based. “If ye are not one, ye are not mine”.
One of the statements by snuffer in his book is that salvation always has been and always will be an individual thing. We all want to believe that and the Book of Mormon seems to teach that but frankly, the D&C goes a step further with respect to the restored church. the principle of “when two or more are gathered in my name…” is alive and well in modern revelation.
One might expect each person that gets the Melchizedek endowment to get it in the privacy of their own bedroom but clearly, the Lord had a group event in mind.
When the law of consecration was broken in Kirtland, it was not because all fot he participants sinned against it, the Lord makes that clear. And yet, the cumulative order was disolved and everyone was affected by the outcome. This is a hard doctrine, who can hear it?
“So … Would you argue that no one on the earth (man or woman) can receive a ministering angel unless the keys of ministering angels (i.e. Aaronic priesthood) are on the earth? (this feels harsh and overbroad and I would imagine there may be some scriptures that don’t support it?)”
Actually, I believe we Latter day Saints have inverted the interpretation of the passage in section 13. The keys of the ministering of angels are controlled by the other side of the veil, not by humans.
In otherwords, John the Baptist was able to visit Joseph and Oliver as a ministering angel, not because Joseph and Oliver held the keys but because John held the keys. The reason Joseph and Oliver needed those keys is because they need to be able to visit people in the 3rd watch from the other side of the veil. That is why the D&C reminds us that Joseph holds the keys in this life and the next. His work was not finished. He needed keys by which he could continue interfacing with people in this side of the veil.
“and do you argue that no one can receive the second comforter unless the keys of the patriarchal priesthood are on the earth? (this also feels harsh to me emotionally. I can see why this would not occur in an official priesthood type capacity, but it seems like an incredibly righteous person person in any era might be entitled to be comforted by The Lord, no?)”
First of all, it is not about placing God in a box and deciding what He has the power to do or not do. It is about understanding the guidelines he has given us, and the prophecies he has given us.
One thing that LoF teaches is that once the Lord has given us a commandment and we don’t live it, we are cut off from further blessings. For that reason alone, it does not make sense that God is going around giving people their second anointing. WE ARE ALL UNDER CONDEMNATION!!!
The most righteous among us right now is drossness in the eyes of God.
We should be humbly thanking our lucky stars that we have not been wiped of the faceof the earth, not thinking we are so great that we should be getting our second anointing!
LoF also teaches that one must scrificed all things before the second ordiances are offered.
WHO IN THIS CURRENT GENERATION IS SO DELUDED AS THINK THEY HAVE SACRIFICED ALL THINGS WHEN IN FACT WE ARE ONLY STILL ON PLANET EARTH COMPLEMENTS OF AN INTERCESSORY OFFERING???
(don’t answer that question! LOL)
Anyway, my opening statements before embarking on this particular series provided numerous prophecies that prove that God was near for a while in the second watch and he will not be near again until the appointed time in the third watch.
“And do you argue that no one can receive either the ministering angels or the second comforter when the keys are on the earth, except if operating under the authority of those keys?”
As previously mentioned, those who hold the keys of the ministering of angels can visit the earth whenever their calling and righteous desires dictate.
“And where would women fit in to all that? Certainly they would be equally entitled to those ministrations?”
If I were a woman, I would have serious concerns about where I fit into the plan after reading the scriptures if I did not have a knowledge and belief in the magnificent and mystical truths that have been presented in the holy word of God about the female gender. read this post for some of those magnificent truths..
I want to thank the person that sent the above thoughts and questions… I think I am feeling in the zone again… I may just commence working on the series!