The Fullness of the Gentiles


orson-hyde-dedicates-holy-landIn my interview with Denver last week, the subject of the Patriarchal Priesthood was one that interested me the most, so I asked it first. It also happens to be the longest response I received in the interview. I present it here for your consideration. This has motivated me to go back and read the lecture on priesthood again. At 45 pages, it is one of the longer lectures in the entire series.

I am intrigued by the Patriarchal Priesthood. I have seen it used and have learned a number of things in private that strengthen my desire to receive it. Go back to Father Adam. Go back to the Patriarchs. Study their lives and how they worshipped. Remember what they did each time they wanted to express gratitude for a blessing received. Think of Jacob’s dream, Lehi’s pillar of fire.

When I posted the audio of the interview, I suggested if anyone was interested, it would be helpful to have a transcription of the answers provided. Not one, but two individuals have invested many hours in doing so. I thank them both. The original post with the questions has been updated with the links. In this post, I present the transcription of the first Q&A and invite your discussion.

Transcript One: http://3tcm.net/a-visit-with-denver-snuffer-transcript.pdf
Note: This version has been reviewed by Denver, missing material added

Transcript Two: http://3tcm.net/tim-malone-Q&A-with-denver-snuffer.pdf

Link to the MP3: http://3tcm.net/Denver_Snuffer_QA_13May2015.mp3
Note: The file is 60MB. It’s best to right-click on the link to download it.

Link to a PDF of answer to question one: http://3tcm.net/question-one.pdf

Question One: In a recent talk (3-22-15) on plural marriage, you said (page 39), “There have been many signs given by God that He was about to do something new from the time of the death of Joseph Smith till today. All that was left at the end was for a witness to be appointed, to come to declare, ‘Now it has come to an end.’ In the last talk in the ten lecture series I said, the witness has now come, and I am he. It has come to an end with something new now begun. One of the signs of it having come to an end was the passing of Eldred Smith.”

Will you elaborate on the significance of the passing of Patriarch Eldred G. Smith on April 4, 2013 and how or why we should take this as a sign that something has come to an end? In particular, what has come to an end? You are declaring you are a witness of an end-time event. This seems vital. What is that event, how are you a witness, why is it important for us to recognize this event and how should we, or how do you think God expects us to acknowledge such an event in our own lives?

ANSWER (Denver): In a word, the “fullness of the Gentiles” is ending. One of the last signs of that, was the passing of Eldred Smith in 2013, and with him the office of Patriarch of the Church. That office was never well understood. I’ve never been told that it was necessary to fully explain the significance, so I’ve left most of the details unexplained, but to what I said already I would add the following: The LDS Church makes enthusiastic claims about their priesthood, and those claims would be much more accurate if they were dialed back some, if they were considerably more modest. They claim to have Melchizedek priesthood, which has the following list of things associated with it when it is described for us in Genesis 14:30-31 of the Joseph Smith Translation; the authority:

-to break mountains,
-divide the seas,
-to dry up waters,
-to turn waters out of their course,
-to put at defiance the armies of nations,
-divide the earth,
-break every band,
-and stand in the presence of God.

I have previously pointed out that it’s not necessary for the holder to do all these things, but any one of them is enough to show that the authority is present. But this priesthood does have signs.

The ordination of Hyrum Smith in 1841 was “to the office of Priesthood and Patriarch.” That’s in Section 124:91. The reference to “Priesthood” is significant. What was intended with that ordination was so that (and again I’m reading from the same revelation) “his name may be had in honorable remembrance from generation to generation, forever and ever.” That’s in 124: 96. There was a colorable claim to priesthood while Hyrum and his descendants remained in the office of Patriarch to the Church. That ended. So far as the LDS Church was concerned, it was “good riddance,” because the leaders found the office was troublesome. That office was not part of the Twelve, yet claimed the status of “prophet, seer and revelator,” while it was part of the General Authorities. It was uncontrollable because only descendants of Hyrum were the holders. That gave the office holders independence, and the LDS leaders wanted the office to be discarded so as to finish the consolidation of control in the Twelve, and it has been.

There are many prophecies that foretell the Gentiles will reject their invitation to have the fullness of the Gospel. Christ said that this would happen in 3 Nephi 16:10: “And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you: At that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my gospel, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, and shall be lifted up in the pride of their hearts above all nations, and above all the people of the whole earth, and shall be filled with all manner of lyings, and of deceits, and of mischiefs, and all manner of hypocrisy, and murders, and priestcrafts, and whoredoms, and of secret abominations; and if they shall do all those things, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, behold, saith the Father, I will bring the fulness of my gospel from among them.”

There have been many signs that Christ’s prophecy was fulfilled. At the end of that series of events only one thing remained to be done. God needed to send a witness to be the final required sign to declare His intention to begin something new. He always sends a witness to remove doubts. In this event there have actually been two witnesses, inasmuch as Keith Henderson added his witness to the conclusion of the ten lectures.

The signs include, but are not limited to, the condemnation of the Church in 1832 (which was D&C 84:54-58), the expulsion from Missouri, (that happened and was explained in D&C 101:1-2), the forced winter exodus from Nauvoo, the suffering during and following the exodus, the afflictions, judgments and wrath of God at the Saints, (foretold in D&C 124:44-45), their pride, lying, deceit, hypocrisy, murderers, priestcrafts and whoredoms, all of which Christ foretold in 3 Nephi 16:10.

There was an inquisitorial abuse of the Saints by their leaders once they were isolated in the wilderness. As part of the Mormon Reformation, the population was interrogated to root out heresy, sin, and to root out disbelief with the threat of blood atonement, which was “slaying the sinner to save them from hell” (then being taught).

There were mass murders. Over 200 non-Mormons were executed in Mountain Meadows to vindicate an oath to avenge the death of the prophets. Originally the oath was aimed at those who slew Joseph and Hyrum, but news of Parley Pratt’s slaying arrived just at the time that the Mountain Meadows emigrants were going through Utah. And since Parley Pratt was regarded as a prophet by the Saints, the oath of vengeance included him also. Brigham Young traditionally has not been directly implicated, but everyone including the LDS Church Assistant Historian, Richard Turley, admits that his blood atonement rhetoric during the Mormon Reformation, coupled with the temple oath of vengeance that Brigham Young added to the rites of the temple, as well as First Presidency counselor Jedediah Grant’s fiery additions on top of that, were responsible for creating the environment in which the murders at Mountain Meadows took place.

Just as an aside, an oath of vengeance for slaying the prophets could not have been put there by Joseph Smith, because he and Hyrum Smith had not yet been slain while Joseph was initiating the rites. And so the oath of vengeance was necessarily the product of the mind of Brigham Young. But it was part of the temple oaths, and everyone including LDS Historians now admit that the blood atonement teaching, the oath of vengeance, the threatening spirit of the Mormon Reformation, and Brigham Young’s and Jedediah Grant’s fiery rhetoric all contributed to the murders of over 200 emigrants.

Other signs we have seen are contradictions in what the LDS Church has called “fundamental teachings.” For example, plural marriage was once required for exaltation, now it will result in excommunication. Ordaining blacks would once forfeit all Church priesthood, now it is unequivocally condemned as false and those who taught it are likewise denounced and condemned.

Adopting a well-paid professional ministerial class.  In Alma, there is an incident involving a man named Nehor. Nehor advocated that priests should not labor with their own hands, but they should get supported with the believer’s money. This was something the Book of Mormon condemns as being “priestcraft. ” Alma, on the other hand, ordained priests in Mosiah 18:18, “and he instructed them that they must labor with their own hands for their own support.” In Mosiah 18:24, “And he commanded them, that the priests whom he had ordained should labor with their own hands for the support.” King Mosiah adopted the standard as the law in Mosiah 27 4-5:

That they should let no pride nor haughtiness disturb their peace; that every man should esteem his neighbor as himself, laboring with their own hands for their support. Yea, and all their priests and teachers should labor with their own hands for their support, in all cases save it were in sickness, or in much want; and doing these things, they did abound in the grace of God.

I could raise money if I wanted to. I could raise a lot of money if I wanted to because there are those willing to support me and what I teach. If I raised money off the religion I preach, I could certainly get a lot more done with the time it would free up. Instead, I labor with my own hands and I work nights, evenings, and weekends to advance the restored faith.

The amount of work that is going into the book that will come out next involves enormous sacrifice. That includes not just me, but also my wife who edits the manuscript, and practically every spare moment that we both have is required to get the labor done. But it has exactly the effect described in the Book of Mormon. We should esteem our neighbor as ourselves, laboring with our own hands. We should not think that we are better than anyone. When you take money from someone else in order to advance your religious purpose, the mere act of doing that creates an inequality, it instills an arrogance in the recipient. It removes the burden of sacrifice, it removes the humiliation of having to lose sleep and to fret and to worry about things, and to face an uphill battle in everything that you do in order to please God. But you can’t please God by taking advantage of your fellow man.

There have been changes to the ordinance. Isaiah 24:5 warned that:

The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.

Those changes include the most single radical change to the temple endowment in 1990. There were other changes made over the years, but the most radical single change was in 1990.

In 2005 the LDS Church eliminated washings and anointings. Before the January 2005 changes, washings and anointings were literal. The 2005 change made them only symbolic thereafter. That has significance. And I leave it to people to query why it has significance. There was a reason why Christ was anointed preliminary to His death by the woman that blessed and anointed Him. It was to preserve Him into the resurrection. Now the LDS Church no longer does that.

There is a Mormon quest for popularity. Gordon B Hinckley was the original employee and secretary for the, what was then called, the “Radio Publicity and Missionary Literature Committee” in 1934. That committee was predecessor to the Public Communications Department. By the time he became the 15th LDS Church President, his work had hardwired public relations into the institution. This quest for popularity has required public opinion to be considered, resulting in the motivation to make the other changes. The earnest believer interprets the changes as proof of continuing revelation. It is instead the conscious institutional effort to become popular—a way to market Mormonism to the targeted audience.

Another problem has been the centrally controlled, tightly correlated, rejection of teachings through the Correlation Department. This process is the one which David O McKay predicted would lead the Church into apostasy. I discussed this in Passing the Heavenly Gift, you can read about it there if anyone is interested.

The history of Gentile Mormonism has been a long downward path. I laid that out in Passing the Heavenly Gift. The Gentiles have walked away from the light and increasingly embraced darkness and foolish trust in men. All Mormon sects are now ruled by traditions contrary to the scriptures and commandments of God. They are asleep and cannot be awakened. God is now leading something new and left the leaders of all the various Mormon sects to find their own way. Emma Smith, Sidney Rigdon and William Marks said that, “Without Joseph Smith, there was no Church.”

That comment was preserved by William Clayton in his diary in August 1844, because to William Clayton, that was offensive. (See The Nauvoo Diaries of William Clayton, 1842-1846, Abridged, p. 64, August 27, 1844.) The election of the Twelve to lead had taken place on August 8th, and so when Emma Smith, Sidney Rigdon and William Marks said that “Without Joseph Smith there was no Church,” Clayton recorded it in his journal because he thought it was inappropriate and offensive. But Emma, Sidney and William were right.

Following Joseph’s death there was a complete overthrow of the Church by the Quorum of Twelve. The Quorum of the Twelve substituted themselves in place of the equal distribution of power established by revelation. The First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve are supposed to be equal in authority. That’s in 107: 24. Joseph never moved a single Apostle into the First Presidency. They were independently equal bodies and Joseph never moved an Apostle into his presidency.

Likewise the Quorum of 70 was equal with the Twelve. That’s in 107:25-26, and therefore that body should be regarded as equal to the First Presidency also.

The Standing High Councils of Zion were also equal in authority to the Twelve and the First Presidency. That’s in 107:36-37.

All the keys (to the extent that there were any) were, and are held, 100% by the First Presidency, 100 % by the Twelve, 100% by the Quorum of the 70, and 100% by the High Councils. There was no primacy in the Twelve when originally organized by Joseph Smith according to the revelation.

In the years before Joseph’s death, the Twelve were away from Nauvoo doing missionary work as their calling required. Joseph Smith spent his final three years in close association with the Nauvoo High Council, as the Nauvoo High Council minutes reflect. Following Joseph’s and Hyrum’s death, Emma remarked:

“Now as the Twelve have no power with regard to the government of the Church in the Stakes of Zion, but the High Council have all power, so it follows that on removal of the first President, the office would devolve upon the President of the High Council in Zion …the Twelve… were aware of these facts but acted differently.” (Linda King Newell and Valeen Tippetts Avery, Mormon Enigma: Emma Hale Smith, Doubleday, (New York, 1984), pp. 206-207.)

Emma was the wife of Joseph Smith. I know she’s taken a lot of bad press from LDS Mormonism. At one time I enjoyed that same opinion about her. But these were her comments made in the immediate aftermath of Joseph Smith’s death. She was not interested in destroying her husband’s work. That cost him his life. She was telling the truth.

None of the equality of these four different bodies survived Brigham Young. When Brigham Young assumed control, all equality was destroyed and the Church became an oligarchy run by the Twelve. This continues from Young until today. Now the Senior Apostle automatically becomes the Church President, an unscriptural and unwise system for consolidating power. Equality among many has been replaced with the dictatorship of one. Here’s another quote:

“[Emma] bore testimony to [Lucy Messerve] that Mormonism was true as it came forth from the servant of the Lord, Joseph Smith, but …[said] the Twelve have made Bogus of it. ” (Id. p. 211.)

“Bogus” is another word for counterfeit. In those days the term bogus was always a reference to counterfeit money. Joseph cautioned the Saints about violating God’s trust. As he put it:

His work will go forward in these last days in purity, for if Zion will not purify herself so as to be approved in all things in His sight, He will seek another people. For His work will go on until Israel is gathered. And they who will not hear His voice must expect to feel His wrath. (TPJS p. 18.)

To the same effect, during the Mormon Reformation Heber C. Kimball said:

“We received this priesthood in power and authority. If we make a bad use of the priesthood do you not see that the day will come when God will reckon with us and he will take it from us and give it to those who will make better use of it?” (JD 6:125.)

George Albert Smith said essentially the same thing:

“God has set his hand at the present time to establish his kingdom. But unless the Saints will so live and so exert themselves that they can preserve the purity of the holy Priesthood among them, the work will be left to other people.” (JD 6:161.)

Brigham Young said essentially the same thing.

“God will preserve a portion of the meek and the humble of this people to bear off the Kingdom to the inhabitants of the earth, and will defend His Priesthood; for it is the last time, the last gathering time; and He will not suffer the Priesthood to be again driven from the earth. ” (JD 2:184.)

We should expect God’s house to be ordered around only one principle: repentance. When the pride of a great organization replaces repentance, the heavens withdraw, and when they do, “amen to that portion of God’s house.” The Restoration through Joseph Smith will always remain, even if God chooses to order it differently before His return. It is His to do with as He determines best.

He has now sent me as a witness to state the moment has passed and something new has begun. Keith Henderson has likewise testified. The conditions promised by the Lord have been met. Whether anyone notices is of little consequence. God is now doing something to further the Restoration and bring it to its final culmination.

The passing of Eldred Smith was a moment in time that reflected the cumulative effect of a lot of decisions, including and beginning with the initial overthrow of the government of the Church by the Twelve at the passing of Joseph and Hyrum, and culminating in the final overthrow of the priesthood itself, by the death of the discarded Eldred Smith and the discontinuation of the authority that was supposed to have been kept in “honorable remembrance from generation to generation.” God will bestow that authority again and it will go forward, but it will go forward without these organizational pretenders that amass wealth and practice priestcraft.

26 Responses

  1. Am patiently waiting for further light and knowledge to come via the tribe of Judah, our Savior’s tribe.

    – Tom Irvine

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    • How do we know who is and is not of the lineage of Judah?

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  2. Thanks Tim for conducting the interview and sharing his responses. I am both deeply saddened and greatly excited as I read this. Saddened by almost overwhelming sense of loss ( I have been a member for 60 + years and am a descendent of Brigham) and excited that the heavens are opened for business and we have an opportunity to be part of the renewed restoration. Please keep up the good work . boo

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  3. Thanks Tim for all you do. Your posts are most informative to the great work that is beginning to take place.

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  4. Tim, a part of me would like to have a peek at the other 6 questions on your list (hint, hint…).

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  5. While I mostly agree with DS on his views of Priesthood and about the general condition of the leadership of the LDS Church, I just can’t get over how wrong I think he is about 3 Ne 16:10: my careful study and prayer about this passage suggests to me that this refers to the totality of the people in the Gentile Nations, not to the tiny fraction of those who are members of or leaders of the LDS denomination. Just read the 5 verses preceding this one to put it into context. Then look up EVERY reference in the BOM & D&C which deals with “Gentiles,” and in my opinion NONE of the references there are exclusive to the LDS Church. Secondly, as for Keith Henderson, he doesn’t qualify to me as a legitimate second witness for DS. Reason? Because Joseph Smith provided independent witnesses, that provide actual testimony of the divine manifestations they received in the company of Joseph: viz., Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, Martin Harris, Sidney Rigdon, 8 witnesses and others. To me at least, to provide solid evidence in favor of DS, would require a comparable independent witness of DS claims. For example (in all seriousness) if DS were commissioned to bring forth additional scripture, and then he had additional witnesses to testify of an angel’s appearance, just as in the case of the Book of Mormon, then that would be something to take notice of. I continue to follow Snuffer at every move. To a large degree, I WANT him to be a legitimate messenger. But, in all honesty, he has ramped up the accusations against the Brethren to such a degree, that the ball is now in his court to deliver. You know it takes about 10 seconds to demolish a building, and about 5 years to build one. Likewise, having put the flame to the fuse of Mormonism, he is going to have to deliver big-time, to point the way to what is to be built to take it’s place. And, if a loose confederation of support groups for those desiring Zion is all he can come up with, then maybe he is not the answer after all. I think all of us, including Snuffer should be a bit more humble in regard to Brigham Young then we currently are: holding the Church together during this period must have been extraordinarily difficult, since Joseph Smith set the stage for the succession issues, by leaving very contradictory instructions on what was to happen at his death. Make BY a scapegoat if you wish, but remember that J F Smith claimed, in vision, that Brigham and the other leaders were chosen before birth to be leaders in the house of God. Peace to all.

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    • Karl, I too struggled with the definition of Gentiles in that reference. I think for me it helped that the Lord examines three types of Gentiles in that chapter, which I believe is all-encompassing. The first category (the broadest) is defined in verse 8. They deserve one woe here, the “unbelieving” Gentiles who largely are the ones that scatter the Lamanite remnant, they are termed “Jacob or Israel” in Isaiah as a type. In verse 16, we have a group of Gentiles who sin against my gospel, and reject the fullness of the gospel. They are the same group that “pollute the Holy Church of God” in Ether. They are the same group Isaiah names “Zion” as a type, whose whole head is sick. The repentant Gentiles are those that accept the words of the marred servant, the words of Christ, repent, and are baptized. Isaiah further breaks Zion down into Ephraim and Judah as types, Ephraim the “sin against” group and Judah, the “repentant” group.

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    • I concur totally with this towardzion2015’s definition of Gentiles. I was taught this, by the Spirit, years ago before I had ever heard of Denver Snuffer. Bruce R. McKonkie agrees with Denver by the way. D&C 109:60 states that we are the Gentiles. Moroni asks why we in the last days have polluted the “holy church of God”. Seriously, are we to believe he means the Catholics? Who are the only ones who could Moroni consider would be in possession of the holy church but those people to whom he, Moroni, personally would come to deliver the “fulness of the gospel” viz a viz the gold plates? Another point: The reference of “salt” in the following verse is significant:

      “But if they will not turn unto me, and hearken unto my voice, I will suffer them, yea, I will suffer my people, O house of Israel, that they shall go through among them, and shall tread them down, and they shall be as salt that hath lost its savor, which is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of my people, O house of Israel.” (3 Nephi 16: 15)

      In this verse, the house of Israel here is only referring to the descendants of Lehi, and these are they who are going to tread down the Gentiles, not us. So where are we in all of this while the “gentiles” as you call them, are doing their nasty business rejecting the fulness? How did the residents of the US and Canada reject the fulness if they never received it? Did Andrew Jackson receive the fulness and then reject it? Did the Congress, or any of the states? Did the Quakers or Shakers or Methodists receive it in order to be able to reject it? Is receive the “fulness” simply hearing about a strange fellow named “Joe Smith” who claimed to have some “gold bible”? What people received the fulness? Could that be anyone other than the Mormons? Is it just possible that WE are the Gentiles who received the fulness of the gospel (3 Nephi 16: 7), and who then “shall” sin against and reject the fulness of the gospel by going against the most important aspects of the revelations given to Joseph, by refusing to build the Nauvoo temple in the allotted time, by conspiring to kill him, by changing the ordinances, by practicing priestcrafts, by lying, deceit, murder, whoredoms, etc.? Is it possible that this is what makes us “salt that has lost its savor”? Notice what we see in the D&C 101: 39-40 about salt:

      “When men are called unto mine everlasting gospel, and covenant with an everlasting covenant, they are accounted as the salt of the earth and the savor of men; They are called to be the savor of men; therefore, if that salt of the earth lose its savor, behold, it is thenceforth good for nothing only to be cast out and trodden under the feet of men.”

      The reference to “salt” in 3 Nephi 16:15 can ONLY be referring to those people who have entered the “everlasting covenant”. Who could that possibly be but us, the Mormons, and not the broader Gentile world.

      The Book of Mormon is a warning primarily to us. Yes, it references the gentiles nations and people that would possess this land, but in nearly all cases, the warnings and condemnations of the book are to those who receive the fulness and enter the covenant. Read 2 Nephi 28 and ask yourself if Nephi is not describing the church today. Remember, he just finished explaining Isaiah’s latter day warnings, and Isaiah is also warning about us in the latter days throughout the whole of Isaiah’s writings, especially rich are Isaiah 3 and Isaiah 28:1-22; Isaiah 30:9-13; Isaiah:24:5-7.Then reference D&C 101:43-62 and read the parable of the vineyard. D&C 124:26-55, the Lord warns us and condemns us. Read also 3 Nephi 20 & 21 which is more of the Lord’s words about the house of Israel and us the Gentiles. Read Moroni 8 and again ask if this is not speaking about us not just those crazy Catholics. Read D&C 85:7 and D&C 112:25 and D&C 84:47-58. It’s all in there, we just have to have eyes to see and ears to hear.

      Finally, in your comments, you are always asking for proof. What proof did Alma have? Did he produce marvelous revelations for his people, especially at first? What about Alma the younger? What proof did he have save his testimony? Was Amulek not a valid second witness? Yes Amulek testified of having seen an angel, but what proof other than his word did he have? Keith Henderson testified of having heard God’s own voice. Is hearing God’s own voice (not the voice of the Spirit mind you) lesser than the appearance of an angel? Do not prophets testify of have heard the voice of God? Regardless, the primary proof is in the substance of the message. Always. Signs follow faith. A wicked generation seeks after signs.

      And by the way, Denver isn’t the answer. You seem to be looking for him or some other grand man to step forward and part seas, get water out of a rock, or call down fire from heaven. How well did that work out for the children of Israel? These things happen with some prophets, but for every Elijah there’s a John the Baptist. For every Moses there is an Enos. If you indeed follow Denver at every turn, I would humbly suggest you haven’t really understood the message.

      Bless you. I hope you find what you’re looking for.

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    • “While I mostly agree with DS on his views of Priesthood and about the general condition of the leadership of the LDS Church, I just can’t get over how wrong I think he is about 3 Ne 16:10: my careful study and prayer about this passage suggests to me that this refers to the totality of the people in the Gentile Nations, not to the tiny fraction of those who are members of or leaders of the LDS denomination.”

      I’ve seen Doctrine and Covenants section 109:60 quoted to identify the LDS denomination as “the Gentiles,” but it actually reads “Now these words, O Lord, we have spoken before thee, concerning the revelations and commandments which thou hast given unto us, who are identified with the Gentiles.”

      And it’s always seemed to me that if any of those at the dedication of the Kirtland Temple were actually blood descendants of any tribe of Israel, being “identified with the Gentiles” could simply mean that the world was unaware of the lineage, and their fellow citizens, and Jews, would take them for Gentiles.

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  6. I agree that the times of the gentiles are just about coming to an end. I do not agree however that the gentiles have rejected the fulness of the gospel. The fulness would first have to be presented to them. I stayed up last night and pondered and prayed to receive a “re-confirmation” before I commented here. I received an answer this morning to the following question. “God, did Thou give section 124 to Joseph Smith by revelation.”
    A clear answer came by the power of the Holy Ghost. “No.” Ok so that will not be a surprise to anyone and doesn’t mean anything except for my own personal witness. So I would like to point out some contradictions between section 124 and other verses of the lds canon in case readers might be interested.

    49 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that WHEN I GIVE A COMMANDMENT to any of the sons of men to do a work unto my name, and those sons of men go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work, and cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons of men, but to accept of their offerings.

    How does that fit with this?

    7 And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.

    Or this?

    3 And thus we see that the commandments of God must be fulfilled. And if it so be that the children of men keep the commandments of God he doth nourish them, and strengthen them, and provide means whereby they can accomplish the thing which he has commanded them; wherefore, he did provide means for us while we did sojourn in the wilderness.

    Who was preaching false doctrine? Was it Nephi, Joseph Smith, or Jesus (assuming people believe Jesus dictated section 124) Ok really look at the following verses.

    50 And the iniquity and transgression of my holy laws and commandments I will visit upon the heads of those WHO HINDERED MY WORK, unto the third and fourth generation, so long as they repent not, and hate me, saith the Lord God.

    51 Therefore, for this cause have I accepted the offerings of those whom I COMMANDED to build up a city and a house unto my name, in Jackson county, Missouri, and WERE HINDERED BY THEIR ENEMIES, saith the Lord your God.

    Can these verses possibly be true if the following verses are true?

    1 The works, and the designs, and the purposes of God CANNOT BE FRUSTRATED, NEITHER CAN THEY COME TO NAUGHT.

    2 For God doth not walk in crooked paths, neither doth he turn to the right hand nor to the left, NEITHER DOTH HE VARY FROM THAT WHICH HE HATH SAID, therefore his paths are straight, and his course is one eternal round.

    3 Remember, remember that IT IS NOT THE WORK OF GOD THAT IS FRUSTRATED, but the work of men;

    The following words were written by Martin Luther. They resonate with my spirit, how about yours?

    “For the will of God is effective and cannot be hindered; because the very power of God is natural to Him, and his wisdom is such that he cannot be deceived. And as his will cannot be hindered, the work itself cannot be hindered from being done in the place, at the time, in the measure, and by whom he foresees and wills.” – Martin Luther

    Lastly in section 124 we see the instruction to give Hyrum all of the keys of the priesthood, to act in concert with Joseph Smith as a prophet, seer, and revelator to the church, along with the sealing power. This has confused people up until this day in the LDS church. In the portraits of the presidents of the church a portrait of Hyrum Smith hangs right by the portrait of Joseph. Hyrum’s descendants have claimed (with the backing of section 124) that Hyrum Smith was the second prophet of the church with all of the keys of the priesthood. Yet this is a clear contradiction with what was claimed as truth in section 132 regarding only one man on the earth ever at any given time being able to hold all of the keys of the priesthood, in particular the keys of sealing. The truth happens to be, in my understanding, that neither section was given by revelation from God. Yet both section 132 and section 124 are crucial to the claims that Denver Snuffer has made. Was it Jesus speaking in section 124? Did He contradict Himself?

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    • 49 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that WHEN I GIVE A COMMANDMENT to any of the sons of men to do a work unto my name, and those sons of men go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work, and cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons of men, but to accept of their offerings.

      You make an important point–God can part the Red Sea, but He’s powerless in the face of mobs?? Only one explanation I can think of:

      Suppose God commands you and me to accomplish something together. You are willing, and give the effort that God commanded you. I did not. God accepts your efforts, even though the task wasn’t accomplished because I hindered you.

      If God commanded you to do a work by yourself, then I can’t hinder you; God will provide a way. If God commanded us to do something together, then I can hinder you, but God will accept your offering and you will be blessed.

      This might be an apt description of many marriages.

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      • In my understanding there is not a man, or group of men on earth that could stop a person from keeping the commandments of God. If they could then the Lord never commanded the individual in the first place. God is not so dumb to command something that can’t be fulfilled, is He? I don’t really know much about God commanding groups at a time. I only have ever received commandments as an individual. If someone claims a command for a group, and God doesn’t command an individual in that group, then the individual was never actually commanded. Your explanation seems to imply that not only the group (sons of men) were commanded to perform a work, but also the enemies who hindered God’s work. I don’t think the so called enemies ever received a commandment from God on the matter.

        Your explanation does not include an explanation of how The Lord’s work cannot be hindered, and yet it can be hindered, Or how only one man can hold all the keys, or actually at least two can.

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        • “God is not so dumb to command something that can’t be fulfilled, is He?”

          Of course not. And God didn’t command a thing that can’t be fulfilled, but He does respect agency. And if he gives a task to 2 people jointly, then, it is not in His plan for the task to be completed by only one of the people, else He would give the task to only one person. And the building up of Zion (and a temple therein) just may be the kind of task that requires the efforts of more than one, or more than a few, people. Not because it’s too hard for the Lord to do it with one person, but because the end product is not so much a tangible product (God can make that–even if it’s a temple–on His own without the help of humans) but instead it’s the product of hearts. And that’s the thing that God will not create against our will.

          There can’t be a Zion of one. One person with a Zion heart will surely be saved, but that one will confess “they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.”

          If there is a minimum required for Zion, then people can hinder that work.

          I’m not entirely convinced I’m right, help me keep thinking this through.

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    • –The enemies weren’t the mobs, they were the Saints, with envyings, jarrings, strifes.

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      • Looks like I need to break this down for my own sake. Tell me where my understanding is off in this.

        49 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that when I give a commandment to ANY OF THE SONS OF MEN (ok so this is the group of people commanded) to do a work unto my name, and THOSE SONS OF MEN (same group of people) go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work(all of those sons are faithful),and cease not their diligence (again that same group specified by the word “their”) and their enemies (enemies of those sons of men who were commanded and faithful) come upon them (outside group moving in on those who were commanded) and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of THOSE SONS OF MEN, but to accept of their offerings.

        Am I getting that right? A group of people can be commanded by God, do everything in their power as a group of people to accomplish that commandment, and then God will not give them power to accomplish the thing He commanded them. The verse very specifically states “those sons of men” the ones who were commanded, which makes it very clear that the sons of men who were commanded were diligent and went to with all they had, there is no mention that any of “those sons of men” faltered in the least. That is how I read it anyhow. I don’t know how it could have been any more specific. Gotta hit the hay. Goodnight brother.

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        • You make a valid point. The way verse 49 is worded, generally, indicates that outsiders who weren’t commanded could step in and hinder the work. In the case of lds attempts at bringing Zion, though, D&C 101 doesn’t blame the mobs for hindering Zion:

          101:6. there were jarrings, and contentions, and envyings, and strifes, and lustful and covetous desires among them; therefore by these things they polluted their inheritances.

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  7. I have heard that when the gentiles reject the fulness, it will have been delivered to them with such power that it cannot be disbelieved (3 Nephi 7:18; Moses 7:13). For this reason, those who reject the fulness will become perdition. In that day there will be save two churches only, the church of the Lamb, and the church of the devil (perdition). I have not heard any mortal speak with this power. I think it is safe to say that no one is speaking with such power at this time.

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  8. So here we have another clear example of a false prophet trying to lead us away from the true prophet and authority on the earth today. Do not be deceived my friends, this has happened before and will happen again. Stay in the mainstream of the church and keep your covenants.

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    • Kelly,
      How do you know a true prophet? I ask sincerely. I desire only to know the truth and I do not want to be deceived. I appreciate your sincerity in trying to warn people you feel are in error. Would you please share?

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  9. i don’t even know how to correctly worship anymore or who is right. I used to trust the holy ghost now i don’t trust anything i feel good or bad. this stuff has gotten to me a lot the last year but I’ve only felt myself slipping away from God because it’s made me so frustrated. I’m just depressed all the time and afraid to move in any direction. Everything seems so contradicted feeling the spirit to contradictory things people sharing testimony of opposing viewpoints and ideas with equal power. I try to talk to people about this stuff and get no where. I’d ask for myself but I don’t trust anything I feel anymore even the overwhelming intense feeling of peace and clarity just doesn’t seem like enough to do anything in the face of contradiction and fearing for consequences.

    It makes me ask the question who can be saved? If the men I’ve looked up to over the years who seem to be filled with enormous amounts of wisdom light and truth are actually part of an apostate church, how and why do their messages still uplift? Does god still inspire them inspite of it all? Or do they simply draw near with their lips and the holy ghost tell me what they say is good or correct in principle?

    How can I believe in and worship a God that allows things to immediately get so complicated and corrupt and confusing and contradictory. A God that is so seemingly specific in how to properly worship.

    Some times I think that’s why John the Baptist went away into a cave. I want to do the same at times. But mostly I just want to die because my life is so confusing and my once close relationship with God is no more, and my trust is so broken.

    Feeling lost most of the time these days.

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    • Ps: my brother says this is proof that it’s a bad seed, but I don’t believe that. I know much of what is talked about is right especially what is talked about in this post, but for some reason I have been collapsing spiritually. I read David Whitmers testimony and explanation for what happened and I believe it is correct. The problem is that now I don’t know what resources to trust other than the book of Mormon but I can’t seem to even read that anymore cause I’m just to depressed by the whole thing.

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    • I’m not LDS, but I’ve felt much the way you say you feel here since I started investigating Mormonism.

      I thank you for what you posted here, and I’ve been interested in reading the comments of those who have replied to you.

      I don’t really have more to add, as I’m still trying to figure things out myself, but I hope God has mercy on all of us.

      Peace.

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      • Thanks for the responses Kathryn and Jesef. I can relate to a lot of what you both said. Jesef I think what has been impressed upon me is very similar, I believe the same things the same way. I think the holy ghost as I know it has taught me a lot through this, I have never really had a hard time receiving answers but I’m having a harder time trusting it.

        I guess I am having a hard time accepting lack of conformity in beliefs. The church dogmas and teachings filed that for me, now it feels like some sort of free for all where everyone believes what they feel is being revealed but good well meaning people are getting opposing revelations and it makes me wonder what is to be trusted, even though I have my own views that feel very correct, not having a prophetic organizational affirmation of it leaves me hoping I’m not being deceived somehow, walking in my own way, looking beyond the mark.

        So lately I’ve felt so drained. I used to have the spirit really directing my life 5 years ago, and today I’m not feeling much at all.

        I’m questioning everything, trying to rebuild but trusting nothing I receive and staying over again and again.

        I think I feel like maybe Satan is on both sides of the aisle and god is quietly in the center saying forsake all things temporal go live in a perverbial cave take no thought for the body and go through life preaching and talking about God and literally do exactly as Christ did.

        Everything else is just the devil mingling truth with scripture. Maybe there’s not supposed to be structure or guidelines at all, maybe it’s completely an individual relationship thing between myself and God following the spirit, and what’s right to do changes in a given moment. Only principles with very few specific ordinances. Maybe the devil is really in the details and god just wants us to live the principles how we feel inspired and well meaning men just start trying to impose there views and specific ways of worship on everyone else.

        I guess I just kind of gave up. I used to rrally feel a lot of love and gratitude for God but now i feel confusion and betrayed somehow.

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        • Hey brother,

          One of the most difficult points of the path is when the realization hits you that you are the only prophet of God that matters to your spiritual development.
          There is not a man or woman on earth that can teach you a spiritual truth, because they are not the Spirit. Religion offers a false security, a set of rules that are mostly pharisaic and give structure, but are actually just the false mortar that will crumble to dust, what is left when that crumbles is what you have learned directly from The Lord. That is the only “truth” that anyone really has is what God has spoken to each person personally. God is the only real teacher for any of us, yet everyone loves to give credits to books and humans, and God doesn’t seem to care.
          If you know that the Spirit (even if you don’t always understand it or it doesn’t always makes sense) brings light and a higher consciousness, then is it worth pursuing? There are powers of darkness, as I am sure you know, that bombard as as we progress, and when we give in to those powers that would have us disbelieve the spirit, become depressed because of what we think of reality, sit still and do nothing, in a state of indecision, then we can fall into a downward spiral.
          Dustin, not many people are receiving answers by the Holy Ghost, yet you have haven’t you? You are at a critical point. The ultimate test of choosing between light and darkness is different than many think. The seventh (if I remember right) church in revelations was rebukes for being “lukewarm.” This is actually a point of progression that everyone must face. When we really don’t know if the spirit is real, when everything is in chaos, if we can choose LIGHT, and GOODNESS simply because that is who we are and that is what we love, and for no other reason, that is the highest form of goodness. Perhaps God is waiting for you to choose when you are uncertain before blessing you with certain things. God bless in your continued search. By the way amen about David whitmers testimony. Oh and yeah, I feel the spirit from LDS talks from time to time. Elder uchtdorfs talks bring the spirit from time to time. There are prophets within each religion, yet most prophets only are prophets within their own little box, because they are not open to truth outside of that little box.

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  10. Dustin, dear brother, I don’t know what happened to your comments but I’m sad that they were deleted [Admin note: they have been restored]. My comments are directed to you and anyone else who might feel similarly. I am neither a TBM (traditional LDS) nor a Snufferite/Remnant (follower/believer of Denver Snuffer), to give you some initial context, but my journey has included both.

    First of all, please don’t give up! This mountain we came down here and chose to climb is like Everest. It is tall and arduous. You are probably at a point where you are exhausted; it is cold and steep, looks impossible, and the air is thin. It’s okay to stop on a ledge and take a break, catch your breath, gather your courage. (In fact, the Lord provided me just such a ledge, a literal/physical one, big enough for both feet, cut out of an actual granite mountain without hands, at a moment when I was about to fall to my death, on which to stand and rest – but that’s another story…). Rest, but don’t give in to the cold of despair; don’t let the light and hope seep out of you and become (spiritually) suicidal and decide just to stay there until you freeze to death. If you feel lost and alone, like you can’t go one, are just too tired, or worse if you’re injured, it’s time to use your emergency radio/transponder. Help will come from above. There is a bright and sure Light in the midst of the darkness and cold, and that Light is Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Who has overcome this world and all things and was and is and will continue to be mighty to save.

    I was exactly where you are, passing through a deep trough of disillusionment and cognitive dissonance, as I was faced with reconsidering so many of my tightly held and cherished beliefs about the Church, its leaders, its history, its claims, life, the universe, and everything. I read Bushman’s biography of Joseph Smith, Rough Stone Rolling. I ended up reading a bunch of Denver Snuffer’s book, blog, and all of his talks. Learning all of this stuff was sharply uncomfortable, like the air was getting sucked out of the room and the walls were closing in. It seemed like almost everything I valued and had built myself on was crumbling beneath me. That’s how I felt anyway. But I couldn’t deny that a lot of it seemed true and accurate – the history or mis-history, etc.

    You’ve described basically losing trust in the light of Christ within you and even the Spirit, like you’ve lost your trust in men and God, no reliable source for truth. It’s understandable. Men are fallible, even hypocritical, and they fall short in every way. God, on the other hand, is worthy of your unreserved trust and faith. He is perfect, has all wisdom and all power, and is unfailing. However, God rarely imparts a perfect knowledge to us down here. There’s a reason for that. We will not be held accountable for things we didn’t KNOW, for things we merely believed or hoped were true. We are held accountable for what we do, our works, based on our inherent knowledge of good and evil which we’ve been given. We can gain further light and KNOWLEDGE, which we are then held accountable for. God is clear, though, when He teaches us directly and it’s sort of seared into our souls.

    Let me share with you how I came through my struggle and laid hold upon a sure and steadfast hope and faith, which is built upon the Rock or our Redeemer, Jesus Christ. You can too. God is real, loves you, and will help you learn and fulfill the purposes of your life and ascend (continue climbing toward the summit).

    When I was fairly young, the Lord managed to inspire me to read the Book of Mormon entirely despite the fact I had never read a full-length book before. When I finished it 6-8 months later, I read the well-known promise in Moroni 10:

    Moroni 10
    3 Behold, I would exhort you
    that when ye shall read these things,
    if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them,
    that ye would remember
    how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men
    from the creation of Adam even down until the time
    that ye shall receive these things
    and ponder it in your hearts.
    4 And when ye shall receive these things,
    I would exhort you
    that ye would ask God the Eternal Father,
    in the name of Christ,
    if these things are not true.
    And if ye shall ask with a sincere heart,
    with real intent, having faith in Christ,
    and he will manifest the truth of it unto you
    by the power of the Holy Ghost.
    5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost
    ye may know the truth of all things.
    6 And whatsoever thing is good is just and true.
    Wherefore nothing that is good denieth the Christ,
    but acknowledgeth that he is.
    7 And ye may know that he is
    by the power of the Holy Ghost.
    Wherefore I would exhort you that ye deny not the power of God,
    for he worketh by power according to the faith of the children of men,
    the same today and tomorrow and forever.

    So I prayed in faith. Apparently I met the Lord’s conditions because He answered by the power of the Holy Ghost and with fire. I was baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost. And it was powerful! It felt like spiritual light/energy, heat/warmth, electricity, love, joy, peace, and exultation, from head to toe and all throughout my body and being. Electrical vibration might be the closest physical description I would give though. It was also the love of God. I just felt so loved and filled by Their love, consuming me. The question I actually had asked was “Is the Book of Mormon true?” and in the midst of this pervasive energy, I heard Their voice distinctly say, “It is true.” I had several other experiences down the 30-year road after that in which I felt the POWER of the Holy Ghost, i.e. the Power of God. Incidentally, several months after this, I passed through my first major trial in life and this is what sustained me.

    Why am I telling you this? Because in the midst of my confusion about the Church and Denver Snuffer’s contrary message, I had to go back to my spiritual square one. I had to reconsider what I really believed to be true and why. What was the basis for my beliefs? I found in this introspection that many of my beliefs were based on what I would call “extrapolation” – or dependency and association; in other words, sort of an all-or-nothing paradigm like “if the Book of Mormon is true, then Joseph Smith must have been a true prophet (obviously to translate it), and the Church he established must be true, etc.” What I started to realize, though, is that many of my assumed truths were not necessarily true at all; not unless God validated them for me. The tale has grown in the telling, so to speak, and not all the additions have been of the Lord. The Lord had told me the Book of Mormon was true and I had extrapolated the rest without checking things were true line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little. I found I had done this with so many things, like talks in meetings. I had assumed that if I felt the Spirit at any moment that it was validating the entire thing, when in fact it was validating only that moment, that particular statement or teaching, as true.

    Denver Snuffer and his message introduced a whole new level of confusion and dissonance, undermining most of the claims of the mainstream Church, its leaders, etc., and evolving along the way, while claiming he, himself, had achieved/received the ultimate theophany of Mormon spiritual teachings, the Second Comforter, personally visiting with the Savior Himself, a perfect knowledge if you will (in contrast to the Brethren). Then he gets ex’d and gives his 10 talks. I was actually there, in person, at his final/10th talk in Mesa, Arizona. I really thought this guy could be legit, a true modern-day Abinadi or Samuel the Lamanite, from outside the hierarchy, sent to call the whole Church to repentance. I couldn’t deny that many of his criticisms seemed to hit the mark (City Creek mall, etc). Along the way he’s also implied that he’s wrested the keys from the LDS Church; he’s compared himself to John the Baptist and Enoch and Melchizedek, and implied on several occasions that he is the mighty and strong “Servant” mentioned in Jacob 5, 3 Nephi 21, and D&C 85; that he has stood in the divine council, in the presence of the Son and Father/Mother, that he possesses both the Melchizedek and Patriarchal priesthoods, that he is now one of the Fathers (like Adam, Noah, Shem, Joseph Smith), etc. He claims to be the servant initiating the great and marvelous work of the Father to prepare for and build Zion. Some of this is reading between the lines (he is a lawyer, after all, and knows how to carefully word a phrase) but I could establish many of these things with many quotes from him. He’s called for rebaptism if you want to avoid being burned at the Lord’s coming and has initiated the organization of fellowships/communities (never mind he said he would never start a church, that was just wordplay) based on the doctrine of Christ (which is awesome and beautiful, btw) where believers are practicing to become worthy of Zion. That’s just a brief and incomplete summary of some of what Denver Snuffer has claimed and taught. His movement and his claims are diametrically opposed to the mainstream Church. Which of them are right or are they all wrong together? This is where you seem to be. This is where I was.

    Let me just add one other thing before I relate what I did and learned for myself. Signs follow those who believe. I could spend hours telling you about signs God has given me in my life that were of such a specificity as to erase any doubt of coincidence. They really do point to and testify of the Lord, especially when the Lord foretells the future or does something in the heavens. Bright shooting stars are some of my favorites. Long story short, I attended Denver’s 10th talk with great anticipation and openness to his message. It rained the night before he spoke, more than it’s ever rained in 100 years in this area. Many of the Snufferites interpreted this as a sign of divine favor of the “true messenger”, i.e. Denver, and his message and call for rebaptism. The local LDS population interpreted the same thing of record rainfall a few months previous the night before the Gilbert Arizona Temple dedication. Were they signs of favor or signs of warning (when the rain descend… founded upon a rock). I even expected the Lord to validate his calling and message by the Power of the Holy Ghost. I was disappointed and afterwards confused by the absence of power. He spoke for like 3 hours and the Power of God was not manifest, even though he once again spoke of seeing Christ and visiting personally with Him and spending more one-on-one time with the Lord than ever He did with Joseph Smith, and that His message was from Him, etc. Keith Henderson got up after Denver made a sudden exit and bore testimony that he had heard the voice of the Lord declare to him that Denver and his message were true “in the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Ghost” as if he were using the sealing power. Same thing, I felt no power. I was non-plussed. I went home and over the next several weeks I fasted, prayed, and pleaded for an answer about Denver’s message and his invitation for rebaptism, without validation. Tim and many of my online friends proceeded with rebaptism, getting ex’d or resigning from the Church along the way. I didn’t read a single report that qualified as what I would consider the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost following these rebaptisms, though there were many nice reports. I decided to watch and wait. Denver’s made some prophecies of sorts, such as that the LDS Church will embrace gay marriage, that they will start delegating more “authority” to women, maybe even let sister missionaries baptize using delegated authority, among other things. Nothing really fancy and usually not in a very committed way, like not saying “thus saith the Lord.” He phrases things, many times, leaving you wondering whether He’s teaching “as a prophet” or whether he’s just expressing his opinion. He often implies he “knows” much more than he can share. Anyway, without verification from the Lord, I decided to take a step back and just be patient, to wait and see. He seemed to go silent, on his blog, for a pretty long stretches, and then he started posting more and more often, now he’s back to like every 3-4 days. I saw this trend of many Snufferites basically talking like they were so much more “enlightened” than those poor, dumb, benighted LDS sheeple following and idolizing their Prophet. And yet they seemed to be hanging on every word coming from DS’s mouth as if it were coming directly from the fountain of Truth. Yet they did not seem to be verifying these words, line upon line, teaching upon teaching, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

    Then I reached this point where I was so low, my heart broke and I fell into the depths of humility and I cried out to God to deliver me, to show me the truth. He visited me and His power began to flow back into my life, to teach and reveal things to me. Another long story short, the Lord showed me that they way to recognize the truth was by His power, by the power of the Holy Ghost and the power of the Holy Spirit. I started asking specific questions and getting answers. One of the first things I asked was if the Lord would manifest the power of the Holy Ghost to me. He revisited me with the same type of manifestation I described earlier in response to my question about the truth of the Book of Mormon, with that electrical vibrational energy or fire. I have some degree of knowledge that the Book of Mormon is true – that doesn’t mean it’s perfect, btw – it has many mistakes and imperfections in it, and there have been some alterations made to the original translation – but it’s still true, i.e. it is what it claims to be and it contains much truth and words of Christ. I have some degree of knowledge that Joseph Smith really did translate it by the power of God. I have some degree of knowledge that Jesus really is the Christ, the Redeemer and Savior. I also add that I’ve learned many other things that have been manifested true and false by this same power. For example, I do not believe all the claims of the Church. I do not believe that D&C 124 and 132 are revelations from God. I don’t believe polygamy, as practiced by Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, or anyone else, was of God. I do not believe that Denver Snuffer is what he claims to be, though he seems very much to believe it, i.e. the mighty and strong servant, etc (I do not doubt his sincerity, but something is “off”). Tim and others believe he is and act accordingly. I say great, to each his own. Their beliefs and opinions don’t harm or force me. Maybe it’s a good path for them. They seem to find some degree of joy and peace in it. As do many of my family members in their various flavors of southern Christianity. There are lots of wonderful Latter-day Saint Mormons who seem to be perfectly happy and content with their religion and what they are learning and gaining as active members of that faith. I pray the Lord bless us all.

    I could go on, but will just say instead, don’t take my word for it, or anyone else’s, but choose for yourself and, if you desire it, go and ask God yourself, as He has invited, with a broken heart and contrite spirit, cry out to Him from the depths of humility and the depths of your soul. Who is right and who is wrong? What is true and what is false? If any of us lack wisdom, He invites us to ask of Him and He will give and answer liberally and not upbraid/rebuke us. If He doesn’t answer, be patient and be at peace – would He be a fair God to hold us to the fire for what He did not see fit to reveal to us (when we asked sincerely)? Just keep doing your best with what you’ve got and what you know or believe to be right or wrong. Don’t be afraid to live a good life, to seek, to pray/ask, to knock, to learn and grow by your own experience. This is just my take on things. I’m not telling you what to do. I believe there are many curricula that the Lord is employing in this life for many of His children in different stages of their progression/learning. And in the end, knowledge and experience are non-transferrable (like the oil in the lamps of the ten virgins). Unless the Spirit manifests anything I’ve said to you to be true, these are all just my opinions, as far as you’re concerned. As for me I’ve decided to put my trust in God alone, and to live in the Spirit and by the Spirit, to seek and accept truth as They manifest it to me by the Power of the Holy Ghost. And if at some point They see fit to raise me up and impart unto me a perfect KNOWLEDGE, as has been mentioned (e.g. like the three Nephites or Nephi & Lehi who ministered with power), or if He sends such servant ministering with power and the fullness of the Gospel and Priesthood, I will learn and do His will. Until then I’m learning in the way I’ve described and watching and waiting for the Lord to make bare His holy arm in the eyes of all. I hope to see it in this lifetime.

    Excuse any typos and the length. In any case I pray the Lord’s blessings to be upon you and to lift you up and fill you with His light, love, peace, and Spirit.

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  11. Dustin

    I have just finished reading your post and Jesef’s reply. I can easily identify with you. And, as of late, Jesef has expressed many of my own similar thoughts and feelings. So, “Amen” to what he has said.

    I had been in turmoil for about 4 months after Denver delivered his final talk in Mesa… until I backed away and stopped focusing “other people,” “other’s experiences,” and “other points of view and interpretation.” My brain was beginning to feel like “scrambled eggs.” I went back to the foundation, which was the Book of Mormon, after I read a post by John Pontius on faith and belief. https://unblogmysoul.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/faith-and-belief/ Wow… it changed my direction.

    When I began my new study, I was not looking for a witness of the truthfulness of BOM because I had already had an unusual witness that it is true, long ago. I began my new examination by shutting out all outside opinions and commentary, but BELIEVING the words I read… taking them literally and solemnly. I started by marking a “C” in the margin for every commandment given, “believing” and taking them seriously.

    As I read with this new focus, I came to realize more profoundly that all this is an individual and singular journey and it is strictly between me and the Lord. Tim also expressed this same concept in his report of the Grand Mesa experience: “So fellowships are important, yet it seems the actual rising up is an individual effort.”

    For about the last 3 months I have been concentrating on my individual effort to keep the commandments, asking for forgiveness when I fail to live up to them. It has been a new starting point and an interesting journey as I realized how “relationship centered” most of the commandments are. For instance, I’m trying not to judge others unrighteously but find how easily old thought patterns jump right to the forefront. I have to stop and rethink the thought in a different way. I could tell you more about my self-discovery but it’s not the point here.

    My point is that I don’t have to settle in my mind the Church thing, or the Denver thing. I found it all was becoming a distraction to what I was really suppose to be concentrating on, which is my personal relationship with the Lord, and doing what He wants ME to be involved with. (Which at this time, seems to be helping the poor.) I like what Denver said in his interview with Tim… it went something like…. “Theory is one thing but actually doing it is another”. I’m finding that to be very true.

    All unresolved issues will be taken care of in the Lord’s due time and I don’t have to figure it out. I just need to be about being be personally prepared.

    With that being said, I will never see the LDS Church the same. I no longer “buy into” the organization nor traditional thinking as I use to. However, the Church has many good points, which I admire and choose to accept. On the other hand, the things that make me feel uncomfortable or I view as just plain wrong, I will no longer make excuses for, or justify the Church or leaders. My point is, I can acknowledge error within the LDS Church without tossing out the entire system.

    I have to thank Denver for setting me on a new path of spiritual discovery. He lit a fire under me that I have not had in many many years. I will be forever grateful. I believe he is a “called messenger,” but I think we can all be messengers to one another. Tim has been a messenger, so has Adrian Larson, Rock Waterman, Will Carter, Scott Stover and many others. There are also messages from general authorities, as well, that have made me want to reach higher and do better. I will cast no counsel aside which encourages me to “Follow Christ” more faithfully.

    Personally, I think Denver has great insight as well as the possibility of being in error. For instance, I do not believe he is the “Servant” and I agree with Josef’s assessment of the issue. Even though Denver has not “out right” said he is the “Servant,” he has indicated enough that is couched in clever language that one could believe that is who he is claiming to be.

    Dustin, my advice to you is “don’t throw any baby out with the bathwater.” Perhaps you too need to step back to the simplest of teachings, and promises and let the Spirit manifest truths to you in the way YOU hear best so you can be personally ready for any spiritual event or call.

    We are all on a personal journey and it’s not an easy one for any us. You have great courage to be so open about your feelings and discouragement at this time.

    P.S. This is just another point of view… take my experience and those of others for what they may be worth in your spiritual quest. Bless you my friend, as you find your way.

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