I learn best when I share. That’s one reason why I blog. When I finished reading the first volume of Remembering the Covenant, I thought I would share a few quotes that I found unique and spiritually invigorating. This is the second in a series of quotes from the book and from the blog. I can see that there will be at least four posts on this volume. I am finding too many good quotes.
23 Mar 2010 – page 105: Ordinances are not the real thing
The power of godliness is tied to opening the heavens and receiving assignments, confirming revelation, or blessings from God. Promises given to others are not promises to you. Men are rarely reliable sources from which to attain the Word of God. All power is tied to heaven. When the powers of heaven are withdrawn from someone, then their authority comes to an end and they have no power. The ordinances as symbols point to the real thing. The real thing is Jesus Christ and His Gospel. If you want to have the power of godliness in your life, it must be gained through Jesus Christ; access to whom is available to all men on equal terms.
23 Mar 2010 – page 106: Our libraries interfere with knowing God
I’ve been marveling at the irrelevance of higher education to the process of receiving light and truth. … a scholar studies philosophy and then everything looks like it can be fit into a paradigm matching their school of thought. It isn’t the volume of the books we possess which helps our search into deep truths. Indeed, our libraries may well interfere with knowing God. It is the depth of how we live the basic principles contained in the scriptures which let the light of heaven shine into our lives. A bad education (which is most educations) is worse than no education when it comes to the things of heaven. Heaven is an endless source of surprises. There’s nothing mundane going on there.
23 Mar 2010 – page 108: We must hear the voice of the Lord first
The ministry of the Second Comforter is to bring those to whom He ministers to the Father, and have them accepted by Him. This means that the Father accepts them as a member of the Heavenly Family, or in other words, promises them exaltation. Joseph Smith … put the voice declaring a person’s exaltation first, and the visit of Christ and the Father with that person second. … they will take up their abode with him, & the visions of the heavens will be opened unto him & the Lord will teach him face to face & he may have a perfect knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of God…
24 Mar 2010 – page 112: We must each wage a war against spiritual entropy
…we are always going to learn more. It is the nature of the Gospel that our light should increase. Whenever we learn more, we must change to reflect what we have just gained. The Holy Ghost is should be a regular participant in our lives. Its renewed companionship is also primary. Its witness to us that we are on the right path is the only way to wage the necessary war against entropy which seeks to take you into darkness. It is the source of renewed light that always enlightens when it comes. We must do this individually.
25 Mar 2010 – page 117-118: We are required to offend and sound the alarm
Mormonism is either correct, or it has no reason to exist. Jesus Christ did not intend to let those who follow the work He was to commission through Joseph Smith to become popular, successful, or live in peace. He intended to put them at odds with all the rest of the world. It is an instant challenge to the world. When we shape the message of the Restoration into a vocabulary which does not offend, we miss the point. We are REQUIRED to offend. We are REQUIRED to sound the alarm to “Awake! Arise!” When the message to those who accept the Historic Christian faiths is that “you’re OK” we are contradicting Christ’s opening statement to Joseph Smith. All of this is only true if what we are doing is continuing the work begun by Joseph Smith. If we have abandoned what he restored, then never mind.
28 Mar 2010 – pages 129-130: Not necessary for apostle to have audience with Christ
When someone in a position of Church leadership has an audience with Christ, we hear about it. Joseph Smith told us. Oliver Cowdrey told us. Sidney Rigdon told us. So did President John Taylor, President Joseph F. Smith and David B. Haight. Their calling is to bear a witness of Him. When they have an actual audience, I believe they tell us. The calling of the Twelve is to “bear witness” of Christ. (D&C 107: 23.) Because of that calling, they must proclaim they have a “witness” even if it could be more correctly described as a testimony born of the Spirit. I accept their “witness” of Christ and believe it is authoritative. However, I do not read into their testimony what they do not put there themselves. I accept the “witness” of the living Apostles, although it is a rare exception when one has an audience with Christ. In recent talks Elder Scott has gone to some length to testify and describe his own spiritual experiences. I trust in them. I trust him. I believe him to be an Apostle. It is not necessary for an Apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to have a personal audience with Christ.
30 Mar 2010 – pages 133-134: We must feast upon the words of angels, not men
Isaiah prophesied about the effect of losing knowledge about God. He wrote: “Therefore my people are gone into captivity, because they have no knowledge: and their honourable men are famished, and their multitude dried up with thirst.” (Isa. 5: 13.) This is an apt description of people when they are not “fed” with truth and light. In contrast, Nephi wanted the Latter-day followers of Christ to have a “feast” to consume while toiling in this fallen, difficult time. But Nephi notes the “feast” will come to us from hearing the words of “angels” and not from the “arm of flesh.” Nephi taught us: “Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ. Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.” (2 Ne. 32: 3.) Whether we are to “feast” or be “famished” is up to us. Seek, ask, knock: it will be opened. Stay content, do not ask, seek, or knock: you will remain dried up with thirst.
31 Mar 2010 – pages 136-137: We have polluted the Restored Church
The great latter day “pollutions” referred to by Mormon in Mormon 8: 31 are the behaviors of men; not environmental waste. Mormon identifies what those “pollutions” are: “murders, and robbing, and lying, and deceivings, and whoredoms, and all manner of abominations.” Those are harsh indictments. But it becomes even more harsh when Mormon identifies US as the culprits. He calls us “pollutions.” He tells us we have polluted the “holy Church of God.” That can only mean the Restored Church. Sobering indeed. “O ye pollutions, ye hypocrites, ye teachers, who sell yourselves for that which will canker, why have ye polluted the holy church of God?” (Mormon 8: 38.) Remember that Mormon saw us. Jesus Christ showed Mormon US. He was in a unique position to accurately tell us what ails us. (Mormon 8: 35.) So why do we think ourselves in good spiritual condition? Why are we confident we aren’t condemned by the Lord? Why do we presume that as Latter-day Saints we are safe? Why do we think Mormon is talking to all those other churches; churches who will never read his book, and therefore cannot be warned by it? It defies common sense, really. We are in a lot of trouble. He’s trying to help us. How foolish to think we can line up beside him and point the finger away from ourselves. He won’t let us do that, you know. He’s pointing the finger right at us.
02 Apr 2010 – page 142: The endowment ceremony misrepresents the creation
There are different versions of the creation. The Moses, Abraham and Genesis accounts are similar in putting Adam alone at the point when the commandment was given to not partake of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The Temple account does not preserve this. The creation (or transplant of man onto this world) is not really the reason for the various ceremonial accounts of the event. They are intended to orient us to how we got here (by a deliberate, planned act of God), why were are here (to find our way back to God) and why conditions here are difficult (to gain knowledge of good and evil). The accounts are really about us. Each of us was born innocent in the beginning, gradually become accountable, feel ourselves outside the presence of God, and must work to return.
03 Apr 2010 – page 143: Thoughts are the key to come into the presence of God
Ideas are things. Real things. They come into existence as we create them. They will become subject to the judgment of God, because our thoughts are perhaps the most real part of us. (See Alma 12: 14.) We should guard our thoughts as we guard the lives of our children. Our thoughts hold the key to everything else. This is so important a matter that the Lord tied knowledge of priesthood itself to the thoughts we entertain in the privacy of our minds. Only when our thoughts are worthy are we able to bear the presence of God. (D&C 121: 45.) If you study the scriptures and then meditate upon them also. You will only develop power within as you do so.
05 Apr 2010 – page 148: Receiving Second Comforter not valued by this world
I was asked about the meaning of receiving the Second Comforter. There is a chapter in the book (The Second Comforter: Conversing with the Lord Through the Veil) titled “What it Means and What it Does Not Mean” that summarizes the matter. The promises of God are helpful in enduring to the end. But they have no value here apart from peace of mind. They are not “property” which this world will value highly. They are for the coming life.
05 Apr 2010 – page 148: God may require us to go public as part of a trial
All the prophets can do is offer encouragement to others. They can affirm that the path back to God exists and can be walked even in a day of sin like today. They cannot do the walking for anyone other than themselves. Each person is obligated to walk on the path for him or herself. Examples of others offer encouragement, but can never replace the obligation devolving upon each individual. It would be easier for a person to live in harmony with God in obscurity than with public notice. Sometimes, however, the Lord requires a person to take a public stand as part of the trial or obligation imposed upon them. Whether the person complies with that duty is a measure of the person’s sincerity.
07 Apr 2010 – page 153: The church is flawed but necessary and good
I recognize weaknesses [of the church], have no intention of avoiding them, and am not an apologist in the traditional sense. But I believe in the church, accept its authority, and think its role is necessary and even critical to the work of the Lord. Acknowledging the flaws is admitting the obvious. But getting those who are discouraged, losing their faith, or have left the church to reconsider that decision is another thing. They cannot be reached spiritually without some acknowledgment of the problems in the church. They aren’t going to be deceived by offering a clever polemical argument. Once the varnish comes off the institution of the church, for many, faith dies. But that is not necessary. Nor is it inevitable. It is possible to see the frailties of men and still also see the hand of God. … the church may be flawed, but despite that, it is worthy, worthwhile, necessary and good. I have had some success.
07 Apr 2010 – page 154: We should have faith in an imperfect church anyway
Some of the church’s most effective critics are former members. Indeed, with the internet, the arguments against the church are multiplying, as are the number of critics. I try not to gloss over the flaws or ignore their existence or to pretend that there aren’t legitimate questions being asked about what has or is happening within the institution of the church. I’m saying that we can and should have faith anyway. The church matters and its mission has always been possible to accomplish. I also want those who sense we’ve retreated from the original scope of doctrine and practice to realize the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ remains on the earth. It is as accessible to anyone living today as it was while Joseph was here. The failure of others does not impose any limitation upon the individual who sincerely seeks, asks and follows. We are not dependent upon others or even the institution itself to receive that fullness. Although the ordinances offered by the church remain the foundation upon which the fullness must be built.
08 Apr 2010, page 161: Sacrifice is required to produce faith sufficient to save us
…it is quite important to note the necessity of sacrifice to produce the kind of faith which saves. Joseph’s explanation required us to sacrifice all things to be able to lay hold on saving faith. Without the knowledge that we would give up everything, even our own lives if necessary, we cannot receive eternal life. We have to trade this life for the next. No trade, no exaltation. So when a man or woman reaches the point where she/he can be tested, the Lord will supply a test to them to prove (to themselves) that they will sacrifice all things. [The Lord already knows, but we don’t. And it is OUR faith which is required to be tested.]
09 April 2010, page 169: Times of Gentiles ending – no longer a Christian nation
We are witnessing the end of the times of the Gentiles. There is a worldwide collapse of the Gentile populations. (Gentiles being the white, European populations.) Although we have scattered Israelite blood in us, the LDS Church was founded by those who are “identified with the Gentiles” (D&C 109: 60). But their (our) time has run its course. The God of this land (North America) is Jesus Christ. When people reject Him, they lose their claim on the land and are swept away. (See 2 Ne. 1: 7-10.) We have now, by the popular vote of the Gentiles who possess this land, chosen a leader who proclaimed on April 6th, 2009 (the Lord’s birth date) that “we are no longer a Christian nation.”
Your can also read part one – A Few Quotes From Denver Snuffer
Filed under: Doctrine, Last Days, Mormon culture | Tagged: Audience with Christ, Calling and Election, Denver Snuffer, Gospel Ordinances, Imperfect Church, Knowledge, Last Days, Sacrifice, Second Comforter, Times of the Gentiles, Visits from Angels, Voice of the Lord |