We Cannot Hasten the Work


HastenWorkI’ve wanted to write this post all week, but I’m glad I waited. It has given me a chance to ponder Denver’s latest lecture last Saturday in Grand Junction Colorado. No I wasn’t there but listening to Doug’s recording was just as good as being there. I suspect there may be a few things on the CDs and in the transcribed lecture that probably won’t be in the final MP3 when it’s fully edited.

Lectures Will Be Available Free Online

For those who don’t know, and it’s no secret, Denver has said he will post the lectures as MP3 recordings available for free on his website when the lecture series has been completed. I buy Doug’s recordings because I want to get a jump on what was taught and compare them to the transcript. It takes a lot of pondering to understand the messages contained in those lectures.

Join One of the Online Discussion Groups

I make no bones about it. I am enthralled by the messages being delivered. I am also grateful for the online discussion groups that have added so much to my understanding. They discuss things I had not thought of. They are anxious to put into practice the concepts being taught. It is exciting to associate – at least online – with people so willing to help each other experiment on the word.

The Internet May Not Last Forever

I feel a little lonely out here in Southern California, away from the Mormon corridor, but find great comfort in the blessing of the Internet. Take advantage of this means of communication while we still have it. The day is coming and it may be soon, that we will lose this marvelous invention which allows us to find and keep in touch with people anywhere who think alike.

Can’t Answer All the Emails

I apologize to everyone who has written me a private email message of encouragement or with questions or asking for advice or just wanting to chat. I get overwhelmed each time I post one of these and am frankly astonished by the response. I never expected to have so many readers. It has grown tremendously in the last few months. I thank you each for your kind readership.

I’m Open to Chatting by Phone

I stand by my offer in the upper right corner of my blog. If you want to chat, shoot me an email with your phone number and I’ll call you. Otherwise, it may be days or even weeks before I get all the emails answered. I’ll usually answer comments in the blog before I get to the individual emails. I prefer to be out in the open with communications about this phenomenon taking place.

Hastening the Work – the Surge

Obviously, by the title of the post, you know two things: 1) Denver discussed the concept of hastening the work in his latest lecture and 2) It goes contrary to the current focus of the LDS Church, which has been in full swing since October 2012 when President Monson announced the lowering of the missionary age to 18 for men and 19 for women. You know the results:

Baptisms per Missionary

Year Qty of Missionaries Qty of Baptisms Baptisms per missionary
2013 83,035 282,945 3.41
2012 58,990 272,330 4.62
2011 55,410 281,312 5.08
2010 52,225 272,814 5.22
2009 51,736 280,106 5.41
2008 52,494 265,593 5.06
2007 52,686 279,218 5.30
2006 53,164 272,845 5.13
2005 52,060 243,108 4.67
2004 51,067 241,239 4.72
2003 56,237 242,923 4.32
2002 61,638 283,138 4.59
2001 60,850 292,612 4.81
2000 60,784 273,973 4.51
1999 58,593 306,171 5.23
1998 57,853 299,134 5.17
1997 56,531 317,798 5.62
1996 52,938 321,385 6.07
1995 48,631 304,330 6.26
1994 47,311 300,730 6.36
1993 48,708 304,808 6.26
1992 46,025 274,477 5.96
1991 43,395 297,770 6.86
1990 43,651 330,877 7.58

Most new Missionaries are Sisters

I’m sure you also know the majority of those responding to the call, at least from the United States, are sister missionaries. And they are doing a marvelous job. We have them in our homes and delight to share in the spirit of enthusiasm and dedication they bring. I am always blessed to remember my own mission experience with fondness as I visit with these sister missionaries.

Social Media and the Church

I am grateful to pay my tithing and offerings to the LDS Church. I fully support the work of the Church. I pray for the success of the missionaries. I love the new focus on teaching, the new focus on family history work, and the incredible strides the church has made in Social Media. I don’t want to embarrass him, but my friend Larry Richman does a wonderful job in this area.

I Love the LDS Church and Faith

I love this church. In the immortal words of Steve Benson, cut me and I bleed Mormon. I like nothing better than to teach a Gospel Doctrine class, a High Priest’s Group Meeting or to speak at the pulpit in front of my ward or stake. I miss my days on the High Council but am grateful to serve as a Stake Clerk. I am pleased and happy to share my time and talents to help my leaders.

The Lord Has Called Other Prophets

So why am I so adamant in declaring that Denver Snuffer is a prophet of the Lord, or at least a true messenger? How can I possibly say that and answer the temple recommend question that is specific to keys only being held by the prophet and the one about sympathizing with apostate groups? 1) Denver has not declared his keys and 2) He has not asked us to follow him anywhere.

Readership of Latter-day Commentary

I know my readership is comprised mainly of others who feel as I do about Denver. I also know I have a few readers in the Church Office Building – and the Administration Building. If you don’t know the difference look it up or ask – you should know these things. My local leaders do not read my blog so this is not written for them. I desire only to serve them and cause no trouble.

Forty Years in Mormonism

I am looking forward to meeting Denver when he comes to St. George sometime in the next few months. Doug has said there will be lectures in Ephraim, Las Vegas, St George, and Phoenix. Maybe he wasn’t supposed to share that but he did. And that should wrap up this lecture series, “Forty Years in Mormonism.” So far, I have simply been blown away by what I am learning.

My Own Forty Year Search

I can identify with the period of forty years. It was forty years ago that I first began to study the doctrine of Calling and Election. It was forty years ago I received the Baptism of Fire and of the Holy Ghost. It was forty years ago I received visions of my future ministry, some of which has yet to come to pass. I can tell you the Lord is very specific about certain future events and places.

The False “Strongman” Model

So why did Denver teach the work cannot be hastened? You’ll have to discover that for yourself. Download the Grand Junction lecture and read it. You will learn more about Zion than you ever did by studying it in Primary, Sunday school, Priesthood or Relief Society. I know I did. You’ll want to focus on the concept of the false “Strongman” model. It was a real awakening for me.

Zion Must Be Ready To Receive Christ

The Lord will not return until Zion is ready to receive Him. Remember, he comes with Enoch and that portion of the earth that was taken up. The City of Enoch must return and the Lord will come with them because He made it His abode forever (Mos 7:21). The key to the return of the Lord is having a people prepared to receive Him – a people who are equal and have no poor.

Follow the Prophet – He Knows the Way

You’ll also want to read or listen to the lecture to understand why Denver says our current mantra or emphasis on following the prophet, drilled in to Primary children in song and to adults is a false dogma: “The Lord will not allow the Prophet to lead the people astray.” Yes, Denver teaches this is false doctrine and I agree with him. You’ll find it on pages 4-5 of the last lecture.

Connect with Christ Directly – No Intermediary

I know this is a shock and causes a strong reaction among lifelong faithful members of the LDS church. The correct doctrine is we must connect with Christ ourselves. There is no intermediary between us and our Savior. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. A true prophet will invite you to come unto Christ and will do nothing to stand in your way of making that important connection.

Be Competent in the Things of God

I conclude with these words from page 2 of the latest lecture: “The glory of God is intelligence. The ‘rest of the Lord’ is the fullness of His glory, or in other words light and truth. Or in other words, it requires a people who are competent in the things of God, who have an understanding that will reach unto heaven.” I offer you that challenge: Are you competent in the things of God?

Make Your Calling and Election Sure

God bless us all to become so if we not already. Learn how to open the heavens and walk the paths of God. I promise you he is willing to speak with you, to show you His paths, and bring you along on your journey until you are ready to enter into His presence, even in this life. “I exhort you to go on. Continue to call upon God until you make your calling and election sure.”

The Lord Hastens the Work

In case I wasn’t clear in the post, it is not us that hastens the work. There is nothing we can do that will change the Lord’s timetable other than preparing ourselves by becoming a Zion people, among whom there are no poor, neither poor in goods or poor in spirit. The angels will gather people into groups when they are ready. Zion will not be brought about by an organized institutional effort.

A Serious Denver Snuffer Study Tool

I forgot one more thing I wanted to bring to your attention. Michael C. has created a wonderful set of cross references to all the scriptures used in Denver’s lectures. You can find it at this link: https://ref.erenc.es/ds/ I have perused it and found it to be extremely useful. You can also download it. Take a look. Every book, every paper, every lecture and even every blog post has been indexed. What a work of love. God bless you Michael.

 

108 Responses

  1. I too feel the same about the invitations extended by ds. The messages have moved me to additional inquiry and a realization of how little I know about the restoration as a correlated Mormon. Things have changed in my life in the last six months and I accept the challenge to learn more. Doctrine distilling like dew…

    Liked by 2 people

  2. In my Gospel Doctrine lesson on the Ten Commandments last week I slipped in D&C 84:21-24. We learn a curious but timeless thing here–Moses was trying to sanctify the children of Israel so they could behold the face of God. When I asked the class if this goal applied to us today I got blank looks with one valiant attempt to explain that all of the righteous will one day see the face of God. I love how you speak of this openly, Tim. Like many truths it takes a while for it to sink in. Perhaps someone in my class will remember this scripture as they’re getting ready to castigate Denver and/or you!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Again, Brother Snuffer is not the only one who has believed these things. I believed this many years ago, before Brother Snuffer began teaching anyone.
    He is correct, though, if he is teaching that the ‘church’ (corporate, etc.) will not build or bring Zion.

    Scriptures in 3 Nephi and 2 Nephi make it clear that the Lord will bring Zion.
    It is very hard to want Zion so desperately and not be able to do anything except with yourself. But so be it. Perhaps that is what is meant by the ‘captive daughter of Zion’–though I am sure there are other meanings of that phrase–

    captive, indeed.

    Praying, hoping, watching, wanting, waiting. Weeping.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Applying the “right/right” principle here, perhaps there are different ways to interpret the “hastening the work” phrase:

    1. Reading the scriptures literally, you’re “right” that it’s the Lord who hastens the work.

    2. Likening the scriptures to ourselves as individuals, perhaps the Brethren are “right” that each person has the potential to hasten their individual participation in the work (as marginalizedmormon wrote).

    Liked by 2 people

    • Eric, I agree the Brethren are inviting us to do all within our power to come unto Christ, by becoming more charitable and cognizant of the poor among us, both poor in regards to the things of this world as well as poor in spirit. Ours is the duty to do all within our power to abase ourselves as needed by exalting the poor. God bless us all to rise to the challenge of this lifelong quest.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Having just finished Denise Mendenhall’s book, I am trying to be more aware of when I judge others — more charity in realizing that we are not all on the same level of the ladder. That has been hard for me. As she said, we as a society are so guilty of this. Thanks for your reviews, I found her book, and I am now reading Doug’s book. I have to believe as Joseph said, “I never hear of a man being damned for believing too much; but they are damned for unbelief.” But then, I must remember not to judge those who are not believing. Tough. I remind myself that I cannot see the whole picture and do not know each person’s struggles and life.

        Liked by 3 people

  5. Tim, did my comment not post? Should I repost it?

    Like

  6. Dear Tim,

    You have been far more forthright and outspoken than I regarding the teachings and influence of Denver Snuffer (the “apostate”). Your reach is much farther than mine, too. How is it, then, that I have been excommunicated before you, Rock Waterman or Daymon Smith?

    Today was a sad day for me at Church. So many people “greeted” me, knowing I am excommunicated…but no one has told anyone (or even me) exactly why. I have become a moral and religious “leper” at Church. Gossip abounds. Men who condemned me still greet me with smiling faces, glad hands, and back pats, saying “Happy Easter!”

    The bishop preaches a message to the congregation of our Savior’s betrayal and condemnation by false witnesses, accusing Him of sedition, false prophecy and blasphemy. He weeps at the thought!

    So the children of them who killed the prophets then erect monuments to their name, saying “If only we had lived back then, we never would have betrayed them!”

    Oh, ya?

    It’s hard to stomach.

    I can’t imagine your days are anything but numbered.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Brother Good Will,

      I am so, so sorry. So sorry. I don’t know you or your story, but what you shared makes me cry. My ho

      Liked by 2 people

    • Continued…My hope for you is that these negative experiences will turn for your highest good. Best wishes and love!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Will, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, please count me as your friend. The day may come when I am called to pass through what you have suffered. I am doing my best to marry two viewpoints that I fear will ultimately prove irreconcilable. I want people to hang onto all that is good within the church, be it LDS, Community of Christ, or whatever religion they prefer, but to focus on building Zion by building up the poor in heart, the poor in spirit and those who are poor as to the things of this world. If we do not strive for this, we are not fit for the kingdom.

      Liked by 1 person

    • My heart goes out to you, Good Will. One of the most intriguing ideas to emerge from Snuffer, Smith and Waterman is that being excommunicated from the Church™ may be less profound than we once imagined. If you believe Jesus Christ in the D&C, the church is believers in Christ who repent. Period.

      Once you understand that the Church™ is the trademark of a corporation sole–that is, a corporation defined by one human being, the president of that body–being kicked out of the club may be more traumatic than meaningful. Jesus Christ states boldly and simply that he is the gatekeeper and employeth no servant.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Good Will,

      My heart goes out to you. Two scriptures come to mind.

      1 Peter 3:16-17 – Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ. For [it is] better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.

      Luke 6:22-23 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.

      This is becoming more and more common, and perhaps the greater test taking place is among those with whom you associate. They will be accountable for their behavior and treatment of you. Perhaps you are experiencing this to stand as a witness of their hypocrisy in Christ’s name. The sifting of the wheat and tares has begun.

      3 Nephi 14:20-23 Wherefore, by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day: Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name, and in thy name have cast out devils, and in thy name done many wonderful works?
      And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

      I pray you are blessed with the Lord’s strength, that you might likewise use a cloak of charity towards them; for perhaps “they know not what they do”, that you may not be bitter for the experience.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Your words are a balm to me, Shyloh, and I haven’t even been shoved out of the Church™ tent like Good Will has. I felt the spirit in your words. Your counsel to put on the cloak of charity and forgive is what the Master would say.

        Good Will–prayers and hugs on you.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Good Will,

      I read your blog, but I couldn’t respond, because I don’t have the right computer ‘tools’ (I think I need a website or google)–

      But I prayed for you. Not in a condescending way. In my marriage we are both in the same place, but one of us is more outspoken, and that worries me; worries my companion, too.

      I very much am feeling, “there but by the grace of God”–

      We’ve been threatened (with discipline) before for just . . . nothing–for being different, poor, having special needs children.

      And now that we are reading some of the Mormon blogs, etc.–we realize that sacrament meeting talks without Jesus in them, SS lessons without Jesus in them and Priesthood/RS lessons without Jesus in them are getting harder and harder to endure with a smile.

      Please know that you aren’t alone. I am really sorry this happened to you–
      I think it would be hard for anyone, even if he/she can put on a happy face.

      Like

  7. Bro Malone,

    I know you have a bucket load of emails every day, per this post of yours. Not to trouble you much, I am trying to find a place I can download, or at print the talks of Bro Snuffer. I find it almost impossible on Scribed to do that. Do you have them available for printing or no? Can you make them available if you do?

    Thank you and God bless. I love your blog and comments. Better watch out though, you will be called in sooner than later to make an accounting unless I miss my guess from your last post, I think it was.

    Gary Allen On 4/19/2014 10:48 PM, Latter-day Commentary – Last Days – Signs of the Times wrote: > WordPress.com > Tim Malone posted: “I’ve wanted to write this post all week, but I’m > glad I waited. It has given me a chance to ponder Denver’s latest > lecture last Saturday in Grand Junction Colorado. No I wasn’t there > but listening to Doug’s recording was just as good as being there. I sus” >

    Liked by 1 person

    • You don’t need to go through Scridh to view the lecture. Just go to Snuffer’s blog and scroll to the lower righthand corner and you can “click” into the talk.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. So, if we take the D&C 101 parable seriously, when the Twelve go down and the servants flee, and their works are destroyed, and the Lord asks, “Why? What is the cause of this great evil?

    “Ought ye not to have done even as I commanded you, and — after ye had planted the vineyard, and built the hedge round about, and set watchmen upon the walls thereof — built the tower also, and set a watchman upon the tower, and watched for my vineyard, and not have fallen asleep, lest the enemy should come upon you?” the answer of the servants is “We fell asleep, because we tried to hasten the work ourselves.

    “We fell asleep, because we didn’t become competent in the things of God ourselves, and we cast out those who had and were teaching us to not receive the things of thine anointed, as if from thine own mouth, but to call upon thee and make our calling and election sure, as they had done, so we would be ready for the angels sent from heaven to gather us into groups.

    “We fell asleep thinking the work we were doing in thy vineyard was going according to thy will and pleasure. We were wearing ourselves out, following thine anointed, confident that he would not lead us astray, but since we neglected to build the tower that thou didst command us to build, from which he could have seen the enemy, while he was yet afar off, he too fell asleep and, lo, we have fled from before the enemy and he has destroyed our works. What do we do now, oh Lord?”

    Now, Tim, according to the parable, what is the answer that the Lord will give? Is it “Go ye, every one, and make your calling and election sure, as Denver Snuffer, whom ye did cast out, has done,” or is it something else?

    You know the answer, but let me ask you, what is the name of the servant he sends to gather the strength of his institutional organization? And why does he do it? And what is the result?

    And what comes down from heaven to be among these people? Who is in their midst? How does this enable them to gird up their loins, looking forth for the great day of the Lord?

    Let me suggest, dear brother, that you answer each question and ponder the implications carefully: The warriors of the Lord, the strength of his house, will be a mighty army, when it redeems Zion, with the Lord going before them.

    The prayer of Joseph, found in Section 109, will be answered in that day, saying:

    “72 Remember all thy church, O Lord, with all their families, and all their immediate connections, with all their sick and afflicted ones, with all the poor and meek of the earth; that the kingdom, which thou hast set up without hands, may become a great mountain and fill the whole earth;
    73 That thy church may come forth out of the wilderness of darkness, and shine forth fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners;
    74 And be adorned as a bride for that day when thou shalt unveil the heavens, and cause the mountains to flow down at thy presence, and the valleys to be exalted, the rough places made smooth; that thy glory may fill the earth;
    75 That when the trump shall sound for the dead, we shall be caught up in the cloud to meet thee, that we may ever be with the Lord;
    76 That our garments may be pure, that we may be clothed upon with robes of righteousness, with palms in our hands, and crowns of glory upon our heads, and reap eternal joy for all our sufferings.”

    It seems to me that this is a very dramatic result, brought to pass by an organized institutional effort. Is it not?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Tim, Let’s not get carried away with the term prophet. You are ascribing an attribute to DS that he does not apply to himself. In fact, he is very clear that he does not solicit or desire a following. If you think his message is true, then great. Discussion of that is fruitful. I do not see why you would put yourself into the crossfire by applying a label onto DS that he does not actually claim. in the Second Comforter, Denver claims that he saw the Savior and that the Savior directed him to write that particular book. That’s it. I don’t recall DS claiming any such mandate for Passing the Heavenly Gift (or any of his other books), or for his current series of lectures. I am troubled that bloggers here seem to be ascribing a divine commission for what he is doing that he himself does not claim. Like you I am enjoying the lectures and find much of inspiration there. However, I am also having to discern by the Spirit and reject parts of what he is saying as his own prejudices or even false. I think much of his rejection of church leadership comes down to a simple rejection of authority figures in general. I think there is a big difference between criticizing the brethren because they are subject to error, and implying that they are in apostasy or lacking authority (or keys) to direct the church. I think DS is slowing but surely moving towards the position that the leadership is in a full state of apostasy and do not have any legitimate authority. If it comes to that, what do we do then? Follow a man, Denver Snuffer, instead of another man, Thomas Monson?

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    • I guess it depends what your definition of “prophet” is. If you take the current correlated idea of a prophet being a leader of the church organization, then of course Denver doesn’t qualify.

      I consider Denver a prophet in the sense that he DOES have a divine commission to deliver a message. I don’t consider him a leader to follow, instead he is a messenger to listen to.

      If one replaces “following” President Monson with “following” Denver Snuffer, then you’ve totally misunderstood his message.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Karl, how about a “prophetic messenger”? One like Abinidi or Samuel the Lamanite.

        Liked by 3 people

      • My motive in posting this is solely to help Tim Malone be careful about how he is using words. Of course every man who has the testimony is, according to Joseph Smith, a prophet. However, since the 15 men at the top are sustained specifically as prophets, seers, and revelators, they are not tolerant of others using the term to describe common members of the church. Whether this enforcement of the term is just or not, I do not judge. Neither do I judge or condemn Denver Snuffer. However, after careful reading of his books, blog and lectures, I do not accept that he has a divine commission to be teaching what he is teaching. Sorry, I have to follow the impressions of the Holy Ghost to me, which have been clear to me. I do not judge anyone who decides otherwise, however. Each individual must receive their own intelligence in regard to this.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Karl, if you are aware of even one of the Brethren, after Joseph, applying to themselves the attribute of “prophet,” or, even better, also ascribing to themselves the attributes of “seer,” “revelator,” and “translator,” just to complete the set of attributes required of the President of the Church according to the wisdom of the Lord (D&C 107:91-92), I would be very interested in seeing your citation(s). So far as I am aware, the Brethren, beginning with Brigham, have consistently avoided applying to themselves the attributes of “prophet,” “seer,” or “revelator,” but rather consistently heaped those attributes upon the others.

    Snuffer, on the other hand, says this.

    Do I consider myself “a prophet?”

    The testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy. (Revelation 19:10.) I have the testimony of Jesus.

    And Joseph taught thus.

    What Constitutes a Prophet?

    Section Five 1842-43, TPJS p.269

    If any person should ask me if I were a prophet, I should not deny it, as that would give me the lie; for, according to John, the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy; therefore, if I profess to be a witness or teacher, and have not the spirit of prophecy, which is the testimony of Jesus, I must be a false witness; but if I be a true teacher and witness, I must possess the spirit of prophecy, and that constitutes a prophet; and any man who says he is a teacher or a preacher of righteousness, and denies the spirit of prophecy, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; and by this key false teachers and impostors may be detected. (Dec. 30, 1842.) DHC 5:215-216.

    So, yes, Snuffer claims to be a prophet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 1 AND the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
      2 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks?
      3 Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock.
      4 The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them.
      5 And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered.
      6 My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.
      7 ¶ Therefore, ye shepherds, hear the word of the LORD;
      8 As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely because my flock became a prey, and my flock became meat to every beast of the field, because there was no shepherd, neither did my shepherds search for my flock, but the shepherds fed themselves, and fed not my flock;
      9 Therefore, O ye shepherds, hear the word of the LORD;
      10 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require my flock at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will deliver my flock from their mouth, that they may not be meat for them.

      (Old Testament | Ezekiel 34:1 – 10)

      Liked by 1 person

      • For my part, I have no cause to fear for their fates, because I do not know what they are.

        And I have no cause to forgive them, for they have given me no offense.

        The Lord calls them to the positions they hold; they did not put themselves there.

        And they are apostles, by virtue of their ordination by them holding the keys of the kingdom.

        Lack of evidence is not evidence of lack.

        Liked by 5 people

      • I agree with log’s last sentence.

        If you meet the Lord and He tells you to tell others, you should. And then you bear that burden.

        If you meet the Lord and He tells you not to tell others at this time, you should not. And then you bear that burden.

        In addition, I’ve already posted Brigham Young’s hope that we can all become “prophets, seers, and revelators.” Rather than worrying/judging about whether others are or aren’t, I should just be striving to become one myself.

        Liked by 4 people

    • Yes, in the sense that Joseph Smith used it, we are all supposed to become prophets. However, as you know, the 15 men at the top are sustained by active membership as The Prophets, Seers & Revelators to the entire church. Whether you believe the claim is valid or not, the fact is that if you start to equate the common members claim to be a prophet, with the claim of top leadership, you risk creating trouble for yourself. Right or wrong, whenever anyone starts to claim they have an equal or superior standing to the current church leadership, the leaders will take notice. Is Denver Snuffer claiming this, or moving towards this? I don’t know.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Perhaps the issue is that we’ve got at least 2 different definitions of “prophet” (human language can change over time, so that’s not unexpected):

        Prophet(1) = someone with a testimony of Christ

        Prophet(2) = “top” leader of the Church, who exercises the keys of the kingdom by virtue of their position in the organizational structure. (As I mentioned elsewhere, D&C 107:18 seems to imply that any worthy Priesthood holder also holds the keys.)

        We’re all supposed to strive to be Prophet(1), while sustaining Prophet(2).

        (By the way, the Primary song “Follow the Prophet” is more palatable when it’s referring to following Prophet(1); follow your testimony/knowledge of and through Christ.)

        Perhaps the concern is that many people may not acknowledge this distinction, so when people start talking about so-and-so being Prophet(1), others may mistakenly think that they are trying to supplant Prophet(2).

        Liked by 2 people

      • There is a third definition.

        Prophet(3) = one who has stood in the presence of God and Christ in the divine council in the heavenly temple.

        Such was Joseph. If Snuffer is to be believed, so also is Snuffer.

        It is this, I believe, most people are thinking of when they hear the word “prophet.”

        Even though Joseph explicated the definition of prophet(1), I don’t necessarily agree with it, since it has the effect of entirely collapsing the scriptural distinction between “saint” (sanctified one, meaning one who has been baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost, which is the Father’s testimony of Christ [3 Nephi 11:35]), and “prophet,” which would be one who has “the testimony of Christ.”

        There is no scriptural justification for the definition of prophet(2).

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for your comment.

        I have a hobby of stratifying concepts into levels, maybe so that I can understand that everyone can be “right,” depending on what level they are operating from. In ascending order:

        Prophet-1 = someone who can “see the future”

        Prophet-2 = leader of the Church

        Prophet-3 = someone with a testimony of Christ

        Prophet-4 = log’s definition

        (Prophet-5 = an exalted being?)

        Liked by 2 people

      • Wow Eric.. I just ran into your website.. It really resonated with me and your subject “The Godhead Within Us: Father, Son, Holy Spirit, and Levels of Reality”
        This is why: Know the Holy Ghost: My Witness-. http://www.journeytothefullness.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=224

        I downloaded your book and am interested to read it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • (I apologize to Tim for going off topic here)

        Most of my books are not too readable; they are mostly bunches of quotations.

        Thanks for sharing your link. I will study that, and that entire site, in more detail.

        1 Corinthians 13:12 comes to mind: “For now we see through a glass [mirror], darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” (I’d better add this scripture to the book too.)

        Liked by 2 people

      • “1 Corinthians 13:12 comes to mind: “For now we see through a glass [mirror], darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”

        Thank you for pointing out this scripture! – There is a deep truth in it in knowing yourself “)

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Hi Karl,

    Let’s define the word prophet to see if we can come to an agreement on this. I cite first…oh scratch what I was about to write. Log beat me to it. I agree with everything he shared. To me, Denver is a prophet because he has the testimony of Jesus and the spirit of prophecy. So do I.

    I consider myself a prophet in my own home and am grateful the Lord allows me to act as such. But the only way I can get anyone in my family to give heed to my sayings is through long-suffering, patience and especially love unfeigned.

    But I know what you mean about the veneration we put upon “the” prophet in our church. It’s almost a cult-like worship, or so outside observers – and some inside- have pointed out. The prophet is not infallible, but we are wrongly imputing that characteristic unto him.

    I love President Monson as much as any other faithful member of this church. I love his child-like expressions of love for the Savior. He seems to be a man in whom there is no guile. Others may feel differently, but that is how I see President Monson. He’s a good man.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim, I’m just concerned about you more than anything. I’m just saying that I don’t think it is wise to start using the term prophet indiscriminately, since the top leaders of the church have pretty much expropriated it for their exclusive usage, and your usage here may likely inflame hostility to you that is unnecessary. Is President Monson a true prophet, seer and revelator to the church. Yes, I think he is. Are the Twelve really prophets, seers, and revelators to the whole church. I don’t know, because I can’t find any scriptural support for the idea. Perhaps they are really PSR’s in “waiting,” certainly we don’t really believe they are actively in this role, because we believe that only one man at a time is in this role in an active capacity (namely President Monson). Peace.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Karl. I appreciate your concern. I get your point. It’s sad but true, that there seems to be a mindset about certain words “belonging” to the Church and are not to be used by the members in uncorrelated ways. Another example is “intelligence.” I believe that our intelligence is a part of our being that we can question and from which we can receive answers, particularly about our own health. I know a man who has been disciplined for teaching we can question our intelligence.

        Unfortunately, some priesthood leaders take exception to the use of the word in any other context except as found in Abr. 3:22. To them, intelligence means the “germ” or “seed” of our being, and is simply the core of who we are, that it was chaotic until it was placed in a spirit by God. Yet, we read we are co-eternal with God, and that the kingdom of God is within us. To me, my intelligence is the repository of all that I am, all that I ever was, and all that I ever hope to be. It is the “real” me.

        I do not use the word prophet indiscriminately. I chose to use the word on purpose. I do consider Denver a prophet, much as an Abinidi or a John the Baptist. Karl, I don’t use the word lightly. I have studied his words, I have fasted and prayed about them. I have gone to the temple contemplating his words. I have received a sure witness to my soul that Denver Snuffer is doing what the Lord asked him to do. He is acting in the capacity of a prophet. It’s an age-old conundrum, isn’t it?

        Does the church have the right to tell us what we are to believe? The church teaches much truth. So do other churches. Does the LDS church have all truth? I do not believe so. We believe in continuing revelation. We teach our members to study things out and to pray about them. When members say they have reached an understanding contrary to what the Brethren teach, then the obvious answer to all priesthood leaders is that the member has been deceived. Is it not so?

        I know my calling and election. I am making it sure. This blog is part of that process. Just after I started my blog Elder Ballard asked members of the church to be involved in the dialog going on about the church that has been happening on the Internet. I feel justified in my writings. I pray about each post before I write it. I ask the Lord to guide and direct me in the thoughts I express and the words I choose to use. My choice of the word “prophet” to describe Denver Snuffer is approved by God.

        At least it is to me, obviously not to you. So we’re back to that age-old conundrum. How can we reach common ground, or can we? I say the Lord has revealed to me that Denver Snuffer is performing the mission of a prophet. You say he is an apostate and a dangerous man. My friend Eric has counseled me to not focus on the “right-wrong” type of dialog. Therefore, all I can suggest is we are both right, but seeing the man from different viewpoints and from different backgrounds.

        Yes, I sustain Thomas B. Monson as a prophet, a title we give to the president of the LDS church by common consent. I sustain him with my money, with my time, talents and efforts. But if it comes down to the Lord asking me to do something and President Monson asking me to do something, I’m going to do what the Lord asks me to do every time. You are welcome to judge me and decide I am deceived and deluded. That is the usual Mormon way when anyone writes or talks as I do.

        My mind is made up and has been for quite some time. God bless.

        Update (after reading and pondering): Karl, I think I went a little overboard on my response. You did not say some of the things I included in my diatribe such as labeling Denver as an apostate and a dangerous man. I apologize. Others have written such things over the years as I have posted about Denver in the past. I was speaking more to them than to you. Please forgive if I offended. Thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I would suggest this would apply to hastening the work.

    I saw a great mountain, and upon the top thereof was the glory of the fathers. To reach the top, all were required to enter through a narrow pass. In the pass was a great beast, cruel and pitiless.

    The Lord brought people whom he had chosen to the mouth of the pass, and there He told them to wait for him, and He went away. The people did not wait for Him, but began to move forward into the narrow pass. The beast killed some and injured others, and none were able to pass through.

    After great losses, many deaths and terrible suffering, the people chosen by the Lord withdrew and departed from the mountain. After four and five generations, the Lord again brought some few back to the pass and again told them to stay at the mouth of the pass and wait on Him. But again there were those who tired of waiting, for they could see in the distance the glory of the fathers, and they desired to be there. These, being overtaken by their zeal, did not wait, but moved into the pass where again the beast killed or hurt them.

    Among those who waited, however, was a man who knelt and prayed, and waited patiently for his Lord. After a great time, the Lord came to this man and took him by the hand, and led him into the pass where the great beast guarded the way. As the Lord led, however, the beast was ever occupied with attacking others, and therefore its back was turned to the Lord and the man. And so they passed by unnoticed, safely to the top. The Lord sent the man to the fathers, who when they saw the man inquired of him, “How came you to be here and yet mortal; the last who came here were brothers who had been slain, and you are yet alive?” And the man answered: “I waited on the Lord and He brought me here safely.”

    http://denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2012/10/parable.html

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Did my recent comment post Tim? For some reason my comments don’t seem to show up very often.

    Like

  14. I belief this would apply to hastening his work…

    I saw a great mountain, and upon the top thereof was the glory of the fathers. To reach the top, all were required to enter through a narrow pass. In the pass was a great beast, cruel and pitiless.

    The Lord brought people whom he had chosen to the mouth of the pass, and there He told them to wait for him, and He went away. The people did not wait for Him, but began to move forward into the narrow pass. The beast killed some and injured others, and none were able to pass through.

    After great losses, many deaths and terrible suffering, the people chosen by the Lord withdrew and departed from the mountain. After four and five generations, the Lord again brought some few back to the pass and again told them to stay at the mouth of the pass and wait on Him. But again there were those who tired of waiting, for they could see in the distance the glory of the fathers, and they desired to be there. These, being overtaken by their zeal, did not wait, but moved into the pass where again the beast killed or hurt them.

    Among those who waited, however, was a man who knelt and prayed, and waited patiently for his Lord. After a great time, the Lord came to this man and took him by the hand, and led him into the pass where the great beast guarded the way. As the Lord led, however, the beast was ever occupied with attacking others, and therefore its back was turned to the Lord and the man. And so they passed by unnoticed, safely to the top. The Lord sent the man to the fathers, who when they saw the man inquired of him, “How came you to be here and yet mortal; the last who came here were brothers who had been slain, and you are yet alive?” And the man answered: “I waited on the Lord and He brought me here safely.”
    denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2012/10/parable.html

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Denver’s transcript came at somewhat of a pinnacle time for me. The Lord asked me to fast last week in the most inconvenient way. I don’t mean this to seem whiny, but this time I was ready because I didn’t give heed to a time previous to it. Anyway, not knowing what to fast for and glad for a second chance, I began my fast anyway as well as my scripture study. He then consecutively revealed to me a lot on the theme of preparing your heart and what that means. I was glad to hear Denver expound more on this theme. I can’t help but feel that the time is becoming short, this in part being what was revealed to me. I couldn’t say how much of course, but I hope I can prepare my heart well enough in the timeframe I’ll be given.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Here is one of the things I was led to stated by Harold B. Lee:

      “The spirit of gathering has been with the Church from the days of that restoration. Those who are of the blood of Israel, have a righteous desire after they are baptized, to gather together with the body of the Saints at the designated place. …
      “… The Lord has placed the responsibility for directing the work of gathering in the hands of the leaders of the Church to whom he will reveal his will where and when such gatherings would take place in the future. It would be well—before the frightening events concerning the fulfilment of all God’s promises and predictions are upon us, that the Saints in every land prepare themselves and look forward to the instruction that shall come to them from the First Presidency of this Church as to where they shall be gathered and not be disturbed in their feelings until such instruction is given to them as it is revealed by the Lord to the proper authority.” (In Conference Report, Apr. 1948, p. 55.) (Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual, sections 21–29, Section 29 Prepare against the Day of Tribulation)

      I made my own notes on what I felt about this, but just wanted to share.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Interesting stats there. Personally, I don’t think changing the age was necessarily a good thing. From what I’ve heard, over 6,000 have returned home early because they just can’t handle it. There have been a few in my ward. Thankfully, my sons turn 18 at the beginning of their senior years, so they are forced to finish high school first. There is a gal I know who leaves at the end of June on her mission. She’s only 19 and boy, does she act like it. I’m not saying all are immature and I have met a few that are ready and are on fire! But there are SO many who aren’t but they are excited to go. When I was younger, I prayed so hard that they would change the age for sisters. They didn’t and I was stuck waiting until I was 21. Now, I’m not very glad they did.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great points.

      Like

    • Yes, I have an 18 year old son serving right now, in eastern europe, and he has struggled with stress. He has been out about 7 months, but it has been hard, as a mom at home, and for him. Yet, he was so excited to serve, I didn’t want to discourage him — you know as a parent, you always try to remain positive. And I tried to hear the voice of Christ to me on the matter. I think, life is a trial, these trials act to purify us, and I trust my Savior to lead me along, and my son. Some other boys in our ward have waited — they wanted to head off to BYU for a year of fun and college pranks. I don’t know if that is better. Maybe one year missions would ease the stress. And if they come home early — it’s the stigma thing. All very hard. Glad your sons will still be in school. (I homeschooled.)

      Liked by 2 people

  17. On the topic of who is or is not a prophet: personally, I don’t think it matters. The problem is that we teach this doctrine of “follow the prophet” without really clarifying what it means, and so when a question comes up of whether President Monson fulfills his prophetic calling, or whether there can be a “prophet” besides the fifteen we sustain, a bunch of people get upset because the word carries so much baggage–different sets of baggage for different people!

    I’d like to raise an alternative question: what do we mean when we say “follow the prophet”, and in what sense are we even supposed to “follow” a prophet, if at all? When we use this phrase in church, I believe almost all the time we actually mean OBEY the prophet, as in, whatever he tells us to do, we need to do, whether we understand or agree. I just did a quick search on various combinations of follow, obey/obedience, and prophet in the scriptures, and didn’t find much, other than a couple Bible references to how we should obey the word of the Lord, passed to us through the prophets. But just simply doing what they tell us, no matter what? I can’t find a scriptural precedent for that. There is, however, a precedent for testing a prophet to see if he’s the real thing (Deut 18:22, for example).

    You might argue that whoever didn’t follow Moses explicitly perished in Egypt or the wilderness. That’s true, but Moses had been proven first in the eyes of the people. The Lord gave him signs to show the people of Israel, and in the events that followed, it would have been obvious that the Lord was backing up everything Moses said. So in that case, obeying the prophet’s instructions was the same as obeying God’s commandments. But I can’t find anything in the scriptures to imply that the obligation to simply obey a leader gets transferred from one leader to the next automatically. Joshua and Elisha, successors to very important prophets, both had to be validated in a very obvious way to the people they were leading.

    I even did some searches on LDS.org on several combinations of obey and priesthood, to see if anyone has been claiming that we owe obedience to any priesthood leaders. I found a handful of references to obeying your mission president, which I get, because missionaries are still naive kids in an alien environment, so the mission president is a kind of surrogate parent. Other than that, all I found was lots of references to obeying the commandments, obeying the word of the Lord, being obedient to the Lord, etc. Then there were some circumlocutions where people said you can demonstrate your obedience by keeping the commandments and “following the counsel of your leaders”. But that’s as close as I found. Not even the church dares preach obedience to priesthood authority.

    I personally, do not believe I have any obligation to obey anybody other than God Himself and a future husband, to the extent that he obeys God, per my temple covenants. I do not believe that prophets of any kind are supposed to be followed like lemmings, but rather that prophets are people whose example should be followed. I often think about the First Vision, for example, and the fact that it’s important not because it signifies the beginning of Mormonism, but because it was the first clear modern example of someone having a question, exercising faith in a scriptural promise, and actually getting an answer. The First Vision does NOT mean that we all need to expect Joseph (or any of his successors) to tell us what to do–it means that we all need to find a quiet place ourselves to work out our own salvation, and provides us with some hope that we can actually receive answers.

    I live in Eastern Europe. If Tim is right about solar flares and EMPs, then the day will come when we will lose access to all the modern conveniences we have gotten used to (Isaiah 2:8,18). And in the moment that takes place, fifteen old men hanging out in downtown Salt Lake City, no matter what their titles are, will be rendered completely useless to everyone outside of a certain 10-20 mile radius. Maybe 50-100, if you’re really optimistic. It occurred to me as I prepared to teach the golden calf lesson last week that expecting any prophet to do the work for me (telling me what to do) is also a kind of idolatry. If I want to survive the coming calamities, I can’t depend on anyone other than the Lord to help me get through it safely.

    And since I’m in the groove now, I may as well mention Brother Snuffer. Who cares if he’s a prophet? I sure don’t. I have found his writings to be more helpful to me in my personal journey than anything except the scriptures themselves and the teachings of Joseph Smith. We are supposed to prove everything we are taught, and it’s up to us to judge the correctness of the doctrine we hear over the pulpit, regardless of the preacher’s calling (D&C 64:38-40). By some definitions (but not all), Denver Snuffer is a prophet. By some definitions, the Twelve and the First Presidency may or may not be living up to their callings as prophets, seers, and revelators. Does that matter? Not one bit. I need to prove every instruction I get from any source, to see if it is from God, and my ultimate allegiance is to Him, not some local administrative hierarchy.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Amen! :)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Your’s is a fresh, clear voice, Julie. Surely God will do remarkable things through you. When I taught the Gospel Doctrine lesson on the ten commandments recently I seized on one of the few mentions of women in the Bible and women with spiritual gifts in particular and brought up Miriam the prophetess.To the extent you are open to the spirit and seek truth wherever you find it I’d propose that you, like Miriam are a prophetess. I wouldn’t wish the burden on anyone starting with you but I resonate with Moses’ longing for all of us to be in tune with God to the extent we all could be prophets. By the same standard Tim is a prophet but don’t tell him. He’s probably in the sights of someone on the Strengthening the Members Committee already.

      Amen to the hunch that mindlessly following church leaders is a form of idolatry. If you resonate to that you might enjoy Rock Waterman’s essay, ‘How To Tell If You Are An Idolater.’ When I taught the ten commandments lesson I spent some time exploring the likelihood that for many reasons we’re idolaters. Between Mormon and Moroni’s warnings to us, the Gentiles, and President Kimball’s classic address, ‘The False Gods We Worship’ I see little reason for us to mount the Rameumpton and thank God we’re not as foolish as the children of Israel. Instead we should do as you say and seek God in our quiet places that he may reveal our weakness to us and strengthen us for that which is to come.

      If Tim’s talk of solar flares and EMPs catches your ear you might find the work of Anthony Larson interesting. Larson observed that Joseph Smith taught an ancient cosmology that matches up with a view of ancient cosmology described by comparative mythologist, David Talbott, and electrical theorist, Wal Thornhill. Larson makes a strong case for the same forces that brought the plagues of Egypt being the same forces that radically change our world in the last days. I agree with Larson’s conclusion that understanding this dramatically opens our understanding of prophetic imagery in the scriptures, past and present. Along with his Prophecy Trilogy books on the subject, Larson offers and excellent online course that explores the subject in amazing detail. Tim is writing a book of fiction, ‘Red Sky, based on these ideas that looks exciting. Among the several reasons we might have to pray for Tim, the strength to complete his book is one of the most entertaining.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve been asked to give a sacrament meeting talk this Sunday. I was thinking about quoting from “The False Gods We Worship.”

        Synchronicity. :)

        Liked by 1 person

      • It’s a pity we don’t canonize more wisdom like the Community of Christ does, Eric. (Amazing recent additions to their book of commandments about our stewardship to care for the earth on which we live.) I’d nominate ‘False Gods’ for canonization.

        If you’re exploring our tendency towards idolatry you also might find President Kimball’s thoughts on the subject from ‘The Miracle of Forgiveness’ useful. Same ideas; more direct.

        “Idolatry is among the most serious of sins. … Modern idols or false gods can take such forms as clothes, homes, businesses, machines, automobiles, pleasure boats, and numerous other material deflectors from the path to godhood. …

        “Intangible things make just as ready gods. Degrees and letters and titles can become idols. …

        “Many people build and furnish a home and buy the automobile first—and then they ‘cannot afford’ to pay tithing. Whom do they worship? Certainly not the Lord of heaven and earth. …

        “Many worship the hunt, the fishing trip, the vacation, the weekend picnics and outings. Others have as their idols the games of sport, baseball, football, the bullfight, or golf. …

        “Still another image men worship is that of power and prestige. … These gods of power, wealth, and influence are most demanding and are quite as real as the golden calves of the children of Israel in the wilderness” (Spencer W. Kimball, The Miracle of Forgiveness [1969], 40–42).

        Depending on the subject of your talk and the attitude among your ward members, President Kimball also offers priceless counsel about wars of aggression vs wars of defense. “We are a war-like people,” he says, and notes that God doesn’t sustain anyone who wages wars of aggression.

        Good luck on your talk!

        Liked by 1 person

      • “I recently learned an interesting fact: If a man owns a million dollars worth of gold at today’s prices, he possesses approximately one 27-billionth of all the gold that is present in the earth’s thin crust alone. This is an amount so small in proportion as to be inconceivable to the mind of man. But there is more to this: The Lord who created and has power over all the earth created many other earths as well, even “worlds without number” (Moses 1:33); and when this man received the oath and covenant of the priesthood (D&C 84:33–44), he received a promise from the Lord of “all that my Father hath” (D&C 84:38). To set aside all these great promises in favor of a chest of gold and a sense of carnal security is a mistake in perspective of colossal proportions. Spencer Kimball- The False gods we worship.

        Liked by 1 person

    • I like you, Julie. I like the way you think. I like how clearly you explain yourself and I REALLY like how you studied and researched before you stated an answer for yourself. THAT is an example we should follow. Thank you!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Julie, I think you are right. I think what has been happening in the Church during the past 75 years or so (paralleling the progressive nature of the US central government) is that many common members of the church have lost their way, and have abdicated their personal responsibility to find God for themselves, This is why the children of Israel could never overcome their dependence upon Moses. In modern Mormonism we have a lot of members who are, well, too lazy to approach God directly. Whenever any difficulty arises in their life, they run immediately to an authority, any authority and want to be told what to do. This is spiritual laziness on a large-scale, and if the members languish through year after year of conferences, and meetings on milk, then it is their own fault–they get what they demand. If members are too lazy to ask for personal revelation, or for MORE revelation to come to the leaders, there won’t be any forthcoming. If the common members do not hunger and thirst for the charismatic gifts, then why should they be manifest?

      Liked by 2 people

    • Amen!

      Like

    • If you look at the April 2014 Ensign, there is a talk titled “Follow the Prophet.”. This is a paraphrase from it,

      “as we strive to follow Thomas S Monson and be more like him, we will inevitably succeed in becoming a disciple of Christ”

      So if Thomas is following Christ, why don’t I just follow Christ? Am I too dumb to just follow Christ myself? In doing that is it possible to not become a disciple of Christ but to become a disciple of Thomas who is a disciple of Christ? Is there a difference? D&C 76 would suggest that is a great way to earn myself a glory terrestrial.

      We don’t need a middleman!! No man can save us no matter how good a guy he is! Follow the leader might be a fun game to play with the kids, but it doesn’t end with exaltation.

      Maybe I am being nitpicky, but this stuff has eternal consequences, o kind of think I should be!

      Like

  18. Nephi “followed the prophet” in two ways:

    First, he PHYSICALLY followed his father out of Jerusalem. If he had not done so he likely would have been destroyed or taken captive.

    Second, he SPIRITUALLY followed his father’s example and ultimately became a prophet himself. So did his brother Jacob.

    Lehi’s reaction to the fact that two of his sons had followed his example and had obtained favor with the Lord is instructive. Notice that he expressed extreme joy, and was not threatened (even after Nephi at one point had to chastise him).

    True messengers don’t just say “follow me.” They point the way to Christ and encourage us to receive every blessing they have received and more. Unfortunately that seems to be missing in the church today; testimonies from our leaders seem to be given more as a credential for their office or position as a leader rather than as an example of a witness that can be obtained by all.

    Denver’s message resonates because he is saying, “you can receive these things too.” And those that have followed the path he outlines consistently share the exact same message: “Jesus lives. I’ve seen him, and so can you.”

    Tim, like you I am looking for messengers from my Father, and I think I have found them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think there’s a lot to learn from Lehi’s story. Carefuly reading 1 Nephi 1, we first learn in verse 4 that in that year MANY prophets came and prophesied. Lehi then prays about the matter. He receives a vision. In verse 18 we learn that AFTER his vision, he BEGINS to prophecy. So we find that Lehi was not among those original prophets mentioned. He prophecied only of those things which he saw and heard in vision. Then because he manifested plainly of the coming of a Messiah, he was mocked by the Jews and they wanted him dead. So Lehi is warned to leave Jerusalem.

      I don’t think those who went with him into the wilderness considered him a prophet. In hindsight, we can see this as obvious. Laman and Lemuel went along simply because culturally, that’s what they did back then. We read in chapter 2 verse 16 how Nephi decides to pray over the matter, his heart is softened so that he doesn’t rebel. After this softening, he visits with the Lord. So initially, Nephi wasn’t totally on board either. So, I don’t think Nephi was in ‘follow the prophet’ mode, rather ‘honor thy father’ mode.

      It’s just interesting, because it seems that although they were both given instructions from the Lord, I doubt Lehi or Nephi would have considered themselves prophets. But to us, it is perfectly clear that they are. Can that pattern be applied to us today? DS may not consider himself a prophet, but those with eyes to see and ears to hear can recognize the pattern.

      While on the subject of Nephi/Lehi, I think there’s a lot more to Lehi’s dream, too. The man in the white robe who greets Lehi. It is suggestive that he might be angelic, yet Lehi ends up in in a dark and dreary wilderness and has to pray to find where to go. Hmm… who was that man dressed in white that led him to darkness? Is that a warning of following anyone other than God himself?

      The symbolism and similarities to our time is astounding. The great and spacious building floating in air….it has no foundation. It’s simple. Christ should be our foundation. If not, WE (not just the evil world out there) are as those in that building, mocking those who are working towards the tree. The rod of iron (word of God, scriptures) is what we must cling to. Not the prophets. The words of Christ. The tree itself–eternal life, the love of God. Sounds a lot like a calling and election made sure.

      Maybe I read into it too much, but I really think the BOM was written FOR US. It was written ABOUT US. Nearly all those prophets who wrote in it taught that they wrote what they did for a wise purpose in Him (God) that they didn’t understand. They saw OUR day. The more I read, the more I think it was specifically for our time. I know a lot of people think that when the BOM prophets speak of the last days, they view that as the time of the Restoration of the church to Joseph Smith. It seems that’s how they reconcile the notion of the Gentiles. We are taught to liken the scriptures to ourselves. That means now, in our current state. When you look at it that way, it is undeniable. We are the Gentiles spoken of.

      When I read the BOM, I like to read through with a specific thought or ‘theme’ in mind. This time, I am re-programming my mind, to think of myself as a Gentile, and everywhere it talks about the Gentiles in the last days, I think in my mind of our church today. Really trying to apply it to myself and this moment in time. It has completely changee how this book is read. It’s very enlightening.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Wow, Shyloh. I loved your comment, and I am going to do the same thing, reading the BofM with “gentiles” in mind. Thank you for sharing this, and I think you are right on with your opinion about Nephi and Lehi. Not many people WANT to call themselves prophets. We all know what happens in the scriptures to prophets.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry, I guess there must be a delay for comments to post. My initial comment didn’t post so I rewrote my thoughts. I apologize for the duplication.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Here is Selfassesment, foolproof self damnation test written in s simple formula.
        I’d suggest testing on YOUrself

        How damned you are= How resistant to being wrong you are = How how resistant to new truth you are.

        Like

    • I don’t think Nephi was ‘following the prophet’…..Let me explain. In 1 Nephi, chapter 1, we find that there were many prophets that came….Lehi prays about the matter, and has a vision. AFTER his vision, he begins to prophecy and witness the Messiah. So Lehi was not one of those ‘original’ prophets mentioned. After he begins to testify, his life is sought, so he is warned to leave Jerusalem.

      Whole family goes with him. We know Laman and Lemuel didn’t think of him as a prophet, yet they went too. Nephi, initally, just went along. He eventually prayed about it, after which his heart was softened, and he was visited by the Lord. But to start it off, he was ‘honoring his father’.

      I don’t think Lehi or Nephi would have considered themselves prophets. History makes it clear to us that they were. Both had dreams of the tree of life, and worked to get their families to ‘partake’ of that fruit: eternal life. . Likewise, I don’t think DS considers himself to be a prophet. I think those with eyes to see and ears to hear, recognize the pattern, and perhaps history will tell a different tale than the status quo. DS is working to get others to partake of the fruit (receive the Savior, and have our C&E made sure). I think it’s the same mission.

      Other interesting things about the tree of life vision: The man in the white robe whom Lehi follows….leads him to a dark and dreary wilderness. Lehi wanders for hours and has to pray for relief. Who was this ‘angelic-like ‘ man dressed in white who deceived? The great and spacious building floating in air…. has no foundation….None of us have a foundation to speak of if it is not built on Christ. We potentially are like those who mock the others who are seeking the tree. The rod of iron is the word of God–scripture–not to be confused with prophets. It’s talking about the words of Christ. I see a lot of parallels to our day.

      Do we build our foundation on ‘principles’ of tithing, service, fulfilling callings, meetings, home/visiting teaching….all good things, but still not Christ himself? What happens when we think we are holding to the rod, but don’t realize we aren’t holding the ‘true’ rod, and we get lost? We find ourselves in that big building, mocking and scorning those who are seeking to see Christ. We in our high-up station are too blind to see that we don’t have it.

      The BOM is literally written for US in our day. Not for those in Joseph’s time like so many people think. Those authors were commanded to write the things they did ‘for a wise purpose in the Lord’ -they didn’t understand. They say history repeats itself? It is so incredibly symbolic to our exact situation. It IS our situation!!! When something is taught of the Gentiles in the last days, it is us, and OUR church. To take the time and truly liken the scriptures to myself and substitute Gentile with myself, and Gentile church with the LDS church today, is very eye opening. It’s so plain to see, yet it is so completely hidden to those who don’t want to believe it isn’t so. Each of those witnesses ALL point to Christ and no one else– Every single one of them.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I agree with Shyloh about Nephi and Lehi. The “prophet” at that time was most likely Jeremiah, who was conspicuously NOT leading anyone out of Jerusalem. So I doubt Lehi thought of himself as a prophet, and I doubt that Nephi’s obedience at the time was anything other than honoring his father. (The commandment to honor and obey your parents is pretty clear in the Bible.)

        However, Nephi was intrigued by the claims Lehi was making, and rather than naming Lehi prophet and tailing him everywhere, he puts Lehi’s experience to the test and tries it for himself. That’s how they both became prophets, not that the title matters.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. A word on the “right-wrong” thing:

    It is taught in the scriptures that God cannot lie, and he cannot contradict himself.

    Further, we are given this definition of truth.

    24 And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come;

    25 And whatsoever is more or less than this is the spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning.

    (D&C 93:24-25)

    Moreover, we are also blessed that we may see clearly to distinguish between truth and error – error (or lies, or deception, &c.) being that which is more or less than truth.

    It is therefore not the case that “everyone can be right, albeit from differing levels of understanding,” and it is part of our proper function to divide truth from error.

    By making statements we claim are true, we are simultaneously implicitly making claims about what is false.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess for me, God’s knowledge of what is “right” and “true” is just too far beyond the mortal mind’s comprehension.

      If there’s a scale from 0 to 1 (false to true), God is at 1.

      But for me, truth is not either 0 or 1 (bivalent). For me, it’s multivalent.

      To me, it seems too prideful to think that my knowledge level of 0.2 is so much higher than the person with a knowledge level of 0.1.

      Log’s right that “it is part of our proper function to divide truth from error.” I do like to separate things into 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, and so forth. Prove all things, hold fast that which is good.

      Embrace things of the highest level you can, but be compassionate, empathetic, and patient regarding people at a lower level, understanding that they just haven’t gotten to your level yet.

      Perhaps if, instead of condemning or contending with people, I lovingly try to nourish people to raise them to a higher level, God will do the same to me.

      I try to keep an open mind that any “fact” or “truth” that I “know” can always be expanded, enhanced, or added upon.

      And until we are exalted, it is better to be good than to be right, anyway.

      (When we’re exalted, they merge together.)

      Liked by 3 people

      • Experience is knowledge, and knowledge is experience; they are the same. Without experiencing something, one does not know it, said Brigham Young.

        Experience does not submit to multivalent analysis – after all, one has either experienced a thing, or not – there is no middle ground.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Perception determines your experience and from God’s perspective we are all wrong/wrong so I would like error on the side of charity and take the right/right approach… This in hopes that the judgement and knowledge I think I have doesn’t judge me or YOU in return.–which it is guaranteed to do. The scriptures already testify of this fact if we are willing to not wrest them..
        Or in Christ’s more simple words
        ” For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again” Matthew 7:22

        Liked by 2 people

      • To me, experience is multivalent too.

        For example, there can be degrees to which one can experience God’s love.

        There are degrees to which one has, or perceives, the Spirit. The scriptures use terms such as “more abundantly,” etc.

        Liked by 3 people

      • To say experience is multivalent to you is logically equivalent to saying it is not the case that experience is binary to you – but that can only be known by experience, and it is itself binary – it is either true or it is false – therefore, it would appear experience is, in actuality, binary to you, too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Incidentally, we speak of degrees only when we have first ascertained that an event or experience has taken place, which is a binary condition and statement.

        For example, Alice steps barefoot into a pool of water while Bob dives in headfirst wearing a swimsuit. Both Alice and Bob are wet, experiencing the sensation of the water on their skin, and therefore know what it is to be wet (binary condition), even if Bob is experiencing a greater degree of wetness (say, a greater percentage of his body is covered in water, leading to the possibility of comparative distinctions after the binary condition of wetness has been established as true).

        I wonder if the IRS would hesitate to assess an NSF fee for a check written for taxes due if the proposition that the check writer’s bank account has sufficient funds to cover the check has a multivalent truth value less than 1.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thinking multivalently, I cannot disagree with Log! :)

        Multivalency does include bivalency. Bivalency is at either extreme of a “truth-value continuum” (for lack of better words).

        Bivalency has 2 values: 0 “dry” or 1 “wet”

        Multivalency has potentially infinite: 0 “dry” ——— 1 “wet” (complete immersion), and everything in between (1 molecule of H2O touching the skin, 1 teaspoon, half the body, all of the body except for 1/2 a molecule, etc.)

        I’m glad Log questioned the “right/right” thing.

        Since I believe in multivalency and bivalency, there IS a “wrong.”

        Bivalency is clearly noticeable in math, for example. 1+1=3 is wrong, 1+1=2 (in base 10) is right.

        Multivalency is more noticeable in subjective things. “I like them a lot,” “I strongly feel that …” Line upon line, here a little, there a little…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Category errors help nobody arrive at truth. “God lives, and Jesus is the Christ” is not a matter of “I like it a little” or “I like it a lot,” neither is it a case of “it’s true for me but not true for you.”

        Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t have any problem with absolute truth statements, which do snap to bivalency (either true or false).

        Maybe it’s more of “semantic” truths where I get more “right/right,” like the definition of “prophet” or “wet.” Who’s to say my personal definition of a word is the best, or only possible, definition?

        Or when the atheist thinks his father is his mortal father, and the Christian thinks his father is his Heavenly Father.

        To me, it shows more charity for the Christian to say, “Yes, I agree with you. In addition to that, I also believe . . .” than to just say, “You’re wrong.”

        Liked by 1 person

      • I agree with this. There obviously is correct knowledge and facts that are right or wrong. It is important to eliminate erroneous beliefs which can be damning. The search for truth is of the highest priority.

        Knowing facts is different then embodying truth. Actually living it and experiencing it is important which connecting and experiencing it directly from Heaven (beyond the veil) is required before you actually know a fuller and grander picture (which makes the facts you think you knew obsolete)

        To elaborate and take it a little further (this is not to argue a but to give honest consideration). I would like to suggest of few questions which two people (or almost everyone) could answer differently. Though their answer’s could be subjective, different level’s of understanding/experience would produce different results with almost nobody giving the complete correct pure answer. What is the empirical answer to the Following: (Could two separate people have different perspectives and be correct?)
        What does Gods love feel like?
        How do you obtain it perfectly?
        What is Righteousness?
        Is it Borrowed?
        What does Charity feel like?
        What does Charity look like?
        How can you tell someone has Charity?
        What is the Holy Ghost?
        Who is the Holy Ghost?
        Describe the Baptism by Fire and How it is unto Sanctification?
        What is Godliness?
        Who are you?
        What are you?
        Who is Elohim?
        Define the Godhead and your role in it?
        What is Mighty Prayer and how does the true order of prayer relate?
        How are you the Temple and if so where is the Holy of Holies?
        How are you a bride and Jesus the bridegroom?
        How does the law of Chasity. we receive in a terrestrial room, relate to qualify as His Bride?..

        Ultimately How does all of this make you connect with Christ, become like Christ, and get to His presence and KNOW Christ? How can we embody it and Have his Countenance IN us and SEE Him?

        Until we see things for how they truly are, where and will be (Always present) From God’s perspective we will be wrong/wrong.

        RESPONSIBILITY IS THE PRICE OF TRUTH. With whatever truth we have Love others as He has loved you.

        Liked by 1 person

      • There’s a reason true prophets (that is, those to whom God has revealed his council [Amos 3:7]) have historically almost always been killed – and it generally has to do with how they do not say “Yes, I agree with you, and in addition to that….”

        A survey of the scriptures on that topic is left as an exercise to the reader. (See, for example, 1 Nephi 16:2, and 2 Nephi 1:26.)

        Act honestly before God and man. Beware of Gentile sophistry; such as bowing and scraping unto men in whom you have no confidence. Be honest, open, and frank in all your intercourse with mankind. – Joseph Smith

        Liked by 1 person

      • Incidentally, I must agree that the “agree and amplify” tactic you mention is a wonderful tool to pre-empt objections before they arise in conversations. Successful communicators such as lawyers, pick-up artists, and salesmen utilize it. I’m not so sure, however, that its use is necessarily an indicator of possession of charity.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, when prophets are speaking the word of God, which is always right, things snap to the right/wrong bivalence.

        I suppose my atheist/Christian example was meant to be in the context of 2 everyday people talking to each other cordially and without contention.

        I guess I picked the wrong profession. :)

        Liked by 1 person

      • I apologize; I didn’t know you were merely speaking of discussing beliefs and philosophies with others in association with multivalent truth values, which now seems essentially to mean “probability of truth,” or “proportionality of correctness.”

        Liked by 2 people

      • Knowing facts or knowing scripture is very different than making scripture part of you. Similar to knowing the words to or hearing your favorite song is different than being able to Sing your favorite song.

        Liked by 1 person

      • “Proportionality of correctness”! That’s it!

        In 3 words you summarized what I’ve been trying to say in this whole thread, perhaps a little lamely.

        A person can get “wet” from 0 (0%) to 1 (100%).

        I don’t know the ultimate definition of “prophet”, but it can range from:

        P(0) = any completely incorrect definition
        P(0.1) = leader of the Church = lowest level of correctness
        P(0.5) = True prophets can “see the future”
        P(0.7) = True prophets do have a testimony of Christ
        P(0.8) = Log’s definition is the most comprehensive of these

        And the atheist/Christian discussion:

        P(0.4) = our mortal father is the father of our mortal bodies
        P(0.8) = we have a father of our mortal bodies, and one for our spirit bodies

        My ebook’s only been out less than a week, but now I need to do a second edition.

        Log, do I have your permission to use the phrase “proportionality of correctness” in the ebook? If so, do you want your name (“Log” or some other name) attributed to that phrase?

        Liked by 2 people

      • You may cite me however you wish.

        I leave this conversation with this thought, expressed by the 12 in 1837.

        “Be careful that you teach not for the word of God the commandments of men, nor the doctrines of men, nor the ordinances of men, inasmuch as you are God’s messengers. Study the word of God, and preach it and not your opinions, for no man’s opinion is worth a straw. Advance no principle but what you can prove, for one scriptural proof is worth ten thousand opinions. We would moreover say, abide by that revelation which says ‘Preach nothing but repentance to this generation,’ and leave the further mysteries of the kingdom till God shall tell you to preach them, which is not now.” (History of the Church, 3:395–96.)

        Opinions are beliefs or notions or philosophies which are not certain.

        I do not understand why one who has the Spirit would wish to teach more or less than the word of God, neither do I understand why one who has the Spirit would seek to persuade others to adopt their opinions.

        Doctrine and Covenants 42:14
        14 And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith; and if ye receive not the Spirit ye shall not teach.

        D&C 50
        10 And now come, saith the Lord, by the Spirit, unto the elders of his church, and let us reason together, that ye may understand;

        11 Let us reason even as a man reasoneth one with another face to face.

        12 Now, when a man reasoneth he is understood of man, because he reasoneth as a man; even so will I, the Lord, reason with you that you may understand.

        13 Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question—unto what were ye ordained?

        14 To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth.

        15 And then received ye spirits which ye could not understand, and received them to be of God; and in this are ye justified?

        16 Behold ye shall answer this question yourselves; nevertheless, I will be merciful unto you; he that is weak among you hereafter shall be made strong.

        17 Verily I say unto you, he that is ordained of me and sent forth to preach the word of truth by the Comforter, in the Spirit of truth, doth he preach it by the Spirit of truth or some other way?

        18 And if it be by some other way it is not of God.

        19 And again, he that receiveth the word of truth, doth he receive it by the Spirit of truth or some other way?

        20 If it be some other way it is not of God.

        21 Therefore, why is it that ye cannot understand and know, that he that receiveth the word by the Spirit of truth receiveth it as it is preached by the Spirit of truth?

        22 Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together.

        23 And that which doth not edify is not of God, and is darkness.

        24 That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day.

        25 And again, verily I say unto you, and I say it that you may know the truth, that you may chase darkness from among you;

        26 He that is ordained of God and sent forth, the same is appointed to be the greatest, notwithstanding he is the least and the servant of all.

        27 Wherefore, he is possessor of all things; for all things are subject unto him, both in heaven and on the earth, the life and the light, the Spirit and the power, sent forth by the will of the Father through Jesus Christ, his Son.

        28 But no man is possessor of all things except he be purified and cleansed from all sin.

        29 And if ye are purified and cleansed from all sin, ye shall ask whatsoever you will in the name of Jesus and it shall be done.

        30 But know this, it shall be given you what you shall ask; and as ye are appointed to the head, the spirits shall be subject unto you.

        Why would someone settle for being, and doing, otherwise?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Because “We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.”

        For example, “The spirit and body are the soul of man.” I accept that as “true.”

        However, I am not God, so I do not absolutely know if that statement is 100% comprehensive.

        Although I will teach the above truth to others, I will remain open-minded and also allow the possibility that God may reveal to me that there is a third component that comprises the soul.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It is one thing to quote others but it is a whole other thing to quote the Holy Ghost! The Holy Ghost speaks with words using charity.
        Intent speaks louder than words and Wisdom is embodying scripture not quoting them. I love you all.
        In repeated words “Why would someone settle for being, and doing, otherwise?”

        Liked by 1 person

      • “However, I am not God, so I do not absolutely know if that statement is 100% comprehensive.”

        If you do not know it, then why teach it? How does the fact that God will reveal more things in the future become a license for teaching one’s opinions, rather than the word of God?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Okay, good point. Let me rephrase that:

        I will teach that I know that the scripture “The spirit and the body are the soul of man” is true.

        If, in the future, God reveals new scripture, I will then teach that I know that the new scripture is true.

        Liked by 1 person

  20. Tim, in getting back to one of your points “Connect with Christ Directly – No Intermediary”
    I would recommend visiting this blog (if you haven’t already) that makes a small change contrary to the possibility.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Eric and Log: I want to thank you both for taking the comments to a whole different level. I had never heard the word multivalency before. I very much appreciate your comments, both of you. Thank you so much.

    Like

  22. Just out of curiosity, I have a question for everyone:

    “A prophet is someone who has a testimony of Jesus Christ.”

    To you, is the above statement TRUE or FALSE?

    (Under bivalent “either/or” logic you can only pick one answer or the other.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Define “testimony”.

      Liked by 1 person

    • And, before this is discussed seriously, did you read the paper I linked to when I proffered the definition of prophet(3)?

      http://www.mormoninterpreter.com/the-sod-of-yhwh-and-the-endowment/

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’ll jump in here if I may: We all know there are multiple levels of testimony. From the fledging convert who feels something different for the first time in his or her life upon learning about any of the following, depending on where they’re already at: God, Jesus Christ, truths from the Bible or the Book of Mormon, the life and mission of Joseph Smith, the receipt of he Holy Ghost, the Baptism of Fire, and on and on…

      And then there is the “Testimony of Jesus,” which is the result of being ministered to by the Savior in the flesh – you embrace and he blesses or ordains you with His hands upon your head. Eventually, He takes you to the Father. This experience is not limited to prophets, but since it involves both receiving the Second Comforter and having one’s Calling and Election made sure, I say such an individual is a prophet.

      I’m struggling with the bivalent “either/or” logic when it comes to matters of the spirit. I consider the fifteen men we sustain as prophets, seers and revelators to be prophets with testimonies of Christ, to varying degrees. I suspect some may have been ministered to in the flesh, yet am confident that others have not been – mostly by their own historical admissions. I consider them “administrative apostles.”

      I can’t do the bivalent thing without agreeing on a definition of a testimony. And since testimonies are variable by degrees, I can’t pin it down to a cut and dry true / false conclusion. I disqualify myself from further discussion of the question and will leave it up to others more qualified in logic and reasoning. To me, we can all be prophets, but in our church, only the president of the High Priesthood is “the” prophet.

      Like

      • I wonder if it’s not bivalent logic that is the difficulty here, but rather the inherent problems honest men have when confronted by clear examples of equivocation – the fine art of redefining words mentally so that one’s statements can be considered true, when there are other definitions of the words being used which, if intended, would render one’s words false instead.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thou shalt not kill–right or wrong?

        Nephi, chop off Laban’s head–right or wrong?

        I just have the feeling that bivalent/multivalent is not a useful way of understanding the issue.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I should have specified that everyone can use their personal (best?) definition of the words in the statement.

        I was wondering that if everyone did so, everyone would answer “TRUE”.

        But Tim’s blog has moved on, so I will too…

        Like

    • Eric,
      Here’s a question for you (or anyone else):
      Why are we so interested/obsessed in the “prophet” figure. It’s pretty clear that we Gentiles end up worshiping them or killing them (both, in the case of Joseph). Look at King Brigham and the follies that have come to light about him.

      What good is a prophet, anyway? Israel had them only because they refused to approach God individually. And like Log is saying, it’s just a word which the leaders prop up only so that they can maintain the compliance of the members. Compliance of the members = growth = money.

      I suspect there will be no prophets in Zion, or at least the residents won’t use that word. Everyone will know the Lord, so the fruits of that will be evident. Some will prophesy, some will heal, some will speak in tongues, etc. No need for some title/category/label to describe them. I say it’s time to move on from the whole prophet/king thing and just embrace our individual and collective gifts.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hi Inspire. My interest in understanding the definition of a prophet is how it is used in the Temple Recommend interview and how it is used in disciplinary councils. My friend Will was excommunicated specifically because he wrote on his blog that Denver Snuffer was acting in the role of a prophet, something I have also posted here on LDC several times in at least two essays and in quite a few of my comments.

        Apparently it’s a big deal as Karl pointed out earlier in the comments. The Brethren take umbrage when we use the word to refer to anyone else but one of the fifteen we sustain as PS&R’s today, one of the past prophets or more precisely, President Monson. Both Brent and Will had statements from their blogs read back to them as evidence that they were apostates. Thus, my own intense interest in how I use the word.

        By the way, I agree with your succinct comment. We Gentiles seem to either worship them or kill them or both, as in the case of Joseph. We all know how hierarchy-driven the LDS church has become over the years. This institution is the best example of how a hierarchy instills fear in the members – fear to develop and use their own spiritual gifts without permission of the Brethren. It has become a very sad situation.

        Like

      • Tim,
        This goes beyond the question at hand, but If your path is anything like mine, you’ll eventually realize that if you don’t fear the hierarchy, they have no influence over you or ability to harm you. Meaning that nothing they can do or say will matter.

        Think about it this way… if you ever were to be exed, the only thing that would happen is that your name would be moved from one database to another. A few keystrokes and that’s it. Realistically speaking, do you think that “heaven” is connected to that database? Do they get regular updates from it? If so, what about the multitude of errors which are contained in the database? I know a programmer who used to work for the Church and he said that the system is so messed up that it is laughable. There is no transparency or accountability, and the methods are questionable (for example, if the records department has lost track of a person who is a “member” they won’t take them off the database until they reach the age of 110, according to their records. And they have lost track of a LOT of people).

        I played the game for a while, doing gymnastics in my head every time I went in for a recommend interview. Finally, this last settlement season, they hunted me down (I tried to avoid them) and demanded I make a statement about my tithing status. Since we’ve been doing tithing differently for some time now (helping when it comes to our attention that someone needs it, but not paying to the corporation), we just said “no” to the question. Of course the first thing the bishop did was have me hand in my recommend, but it’s okay. I don’t mind. (Won’t go into that here).

        Ever since that day, I think the bishop has been befuddled by us. We come to church and participate. Or not. Sometimes we spend Sunday as a family in the mountains. Sometimes we go to a movie. Ward members probably suspect something, but we don’t care. We help out when we can, fellowship, and continue to be friends with some. People know that we are genuine, and if they talk about us… that’s their problem. We don’t go around preaching our opinions, but if asked by someone who is interested (not wanting to condemn us) then we tell them what we think, based on what we feel they can handle.

        Of course, I don’t have a blog and am not monitored that way (as far as I know), but even if I was called on my beliefs and exed, I wouldn’t care. The Spirit in my life is not tied to a blip in a database. Yes, other people would probably treat me differently, but again, it’s not my problem. I’ve come to realize that this experience has helped me know who my real friends are. True friends won’t care one bit. They won’t try to make you a project or feel sorry for you. They might ask questions, but that’s understandable.

        I realized a while back that I was in the wrong “line” for Heaven. The long queue I was in had men in suits at various intervals requiring a ticket to enter. Every time I would pay a little more, then go around the corner and realize that the line went on forever, with official ticket-takers all along the way. Not too far off I saw a gate where only one man stood (who looked like a janitor). No one was there but him. I feared if I left my place in line, everyone would laugh at me, or at the very least I would have to go to the end and start over. My curiosity got the best of me and went to the other place. I chatted with the attendant for a while and then finally inquired, “can I get through here?” He said, “Sure,” and I asked him the price for entry (surely it would be like the super fast pass at Disneyland which is a lot more money). The man said, “Come on in. It’s free. No price. No money.”

        Liked by 2 people

      • Inspire,

        If you haven’t yet read this essay on tithing, you should!

        http://puremormonism.blogspot.ro/2012/12/are-we-paying-too-much-tithing.html

        Like

  23. I have never heard the term bivalent. Sometimes I think we make it harder than it needs to be, but that’s just me.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bivalent, in this context, means “having two possible values,” ie., true or false, with no middle ground.

      Multivalent means, in this context, “having more than two possible values,” or “statements that can be neither completely true nor completely false,” which the Lord says “is the spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning.” (D&C 93:24) Philosophies of men mingled with scripture kinda stuff.

      Both of these are non-standard usages of the words – rather than “valent,” “valued” should have been used.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Ok. This post is either going to be very simple minded or hard to follow. Please bare with me.

    Many of you probably already are familiar with what Roger K. Young and Christopher Parret do. For those that don’t, ill give you a quick run down(I promise it will come together. Hopefully😁). They are responsible for compiling people’s dreams, visions and testimonies about the last days and preparedness. They also have a website called ldsavow.com for like minded people to come together to discuss and share.

    My point about bringing them up is that they used to hold preparedness expos for the church. The brethren came to them and asked them not to hold the expos for the church anymore. They encouraged them to continue doing it for the general public(general public wouldn’t be held accountable because they never received the council). They also encouraged them to continue with the books and website because those seeking would be able to find. The brethren said that those expos would lay out so much hard truth and information that it would make those who were possibly not ready or didn’t have the proper stepping stones to build thier own testimonies of that information and be held accountable. The brethren said that it was not their way to lay out all that truth for those who were not ready for it, but to guide and direct in a away that would promote us to seek it out for ourselves and build our own testimonies(not actual quote, but my understanding).

    Let’s see if I can make this come together. We may have the Judases , Peters, and Thomases in the twelve that were examples and warnings to us of humanness and catastrophic mistakes today all to fulfill a higher plan or we may not. Maybe, just maybe, they are fulfilling the plan and this is what they have been inspired to do. To “gently guide” those “Wheat” to become the best wheat they can possibly be. To not spoon feed us the hard truth and mysteries that can be really hard for most to respond to, act upon and then be held accountable for. With a serious potential to fall flat on our faces. Instead their way makes those “wheat” go out and seek it for themselves and build testimonies of it so that those incredibly hard things to do seem more like a quest vs. a sacrifice.

    When ever I feel fear about something I’m contemplating, It makes me step back and wonder why Satan is trying to motivate me to do the opposite. There is a lot of fear that comes with the posibility of dealing with consequences for standing up for what I feel is right. Especially when it goes against how I used to think and the people I love. It makes it that much harder. I almost feel like I’m mourning a death.

    Then God places people in this world like the Denver Snuffer’s and Tim Malone’s to motivate us to think and ponder who we are, where we came from and what we can actually do with the basic tools/ education we have recieved from the church. To me this adventure or path has been much more motivating and exciting because I’m doing and seeking it out all on my own. If the church/ prophets were telling me all these things that I have learned on this path I’m not sure it would have penetrated my soul quite as poignantly. So maybe this is Heavenly Fathers plan for the brethren all along to only give us a bit and maybe avoid some things to ignite and frustrate something within us that will drive us to sacrifice something we love and hold dear for what we truly need the most to return to our Fathers presence.

    What do you think?

    *Please excuse any typos or errors. It’s never been my strong suit.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Does anyone have the source of those missionary/baptism statistics?

    Like

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