A Wild Man Hath Come Among Us


OgdenKraut.comI remember the excitement in the online world when the document “Further Light and Knowledge” made the rounds among the early Mormon Internet reading groups. I’m an old man so I remember Mormon-L and other such groups where communication was not like it is on Facebook or blogs. It was more of a mailing list where people shared documents. We read them then offered our opinions and observations.

I think it came into my life just after I had been ordained a High Priest some twenty years ago. I down-loaded and printed it, studied it, marked it up, prayed about it and then did a foolish thing. I went to the Los Angeles temple President (Glen Walker) to discuss it with him. His reaction was astonishing to me. He quickly escorted me out of his office saying, “Prayer circles are only to be held inside the temple.”

jim-harmstonThat always bothered me. Frankly, I didn’t believe it. When I prayed about it, I felt otherwise. It was many years before I found the courage to pray in my home as taught in the temple. I learned long ago prayer circles were regularly conducted outside the temples in homes and stake centers until banned in 1978. I guess the Brethren felt the people couldn’t handle it. Looking at Jim Harmston, perhaps they were right.

Opening the Portal to Heaven

I have always been a rebel and I know it. I have always questioned why we do things a certain way. I guess it started in elementary school. I am a kinesthetic learner, although I didn’t know it at the time. I simply couldn’t sit still for lectures. Unless I was doing something with my hands, I was not learning. I am still that way today. My work on computers today is hands-on. I learn new skills only by practicing.

Tribune File Photo James D. Harmston.

Tribune File Photo
James D. Harmston.

Shouldn’t it be the same way with spiritual skills? Adam and the patriarchs built altars. Why don’t we? What is significant about altars? Does it mean something to heaven when we build an altar and then consecrate it to the Lord? I think so. What about a home altar? Why are we not taught about this in the LDS Church today? Do the Brethren not trust us? Apparently not. Yet they were common in early Utah.

I confess I was attracted to the writings and activities of Jim Harmston. Here was a man who was holding study groups in his home. The Brethren became so concerned they published an edict that such groups were not to be held, mainly because it could lead to experimenting with spiritual things that could open the portals of heaven and hell. Guess what? In this case, the Brethren’s warnings were are still are correct.

Watch Out for False Prophets

Jim Harmston is dead now. Died of a heart attack a few years back. His movement, the True and Living Church of Jesus Christ, based in Manti, has all but died out. We called them the Manti group and spoke of them in hushed tones. They were onto something. Jim claimed heavenly visits at the altar. He went past the will of the Lord when he instituted polygamy and then predicted a day that the Lord would return.

TLC_redbrickstoreWrong. Big mistake. False prophet. I can see why people compare Denver Snuffer to Jim Harmston. Denver has declared he has met with the Savior. Not once, but many times. He claims he has communed with the members of the Church of the Firstborn. I believe him. He says he is doing the work of the Lord. He declares the heavens are opened. He has declared we will need a temple to be sealed to the Fathers.

Hmmm…what makes him different from Warren Jeffs of the FLDS and whoever is leading the AUB today? Or one of the many dozens of offshoots that are all insignificant and failing or failed? There may be thousands who have read Denver’s writings and thousands who have been baptized. The Brethren are obviously concerned about him as evidenced by the recent “Boise Rescuemeeting with Dallin Oaks last month.

How can one know for themselves that the work being conducted by Denver Snuffer is approved by the Lord? It seems to me it will always be a small minority of people who adhere to what he has shared, but maybe I haven’t caught the big picture let. I confess I’m a fledging when it comes to what Denver has said is possible. I have not been in the presence of the Lord, nor do I expect to be for many years to come.

40-years-in-mormonismPoor deluded Tim. He says the Lord has confirmed to his soul that Denver is a prophet. Yet, not even Denver has made such a statement. In last month’s interview, I asked him about his use of the phrases, “Servant, “Witness” and “Messenger,” all words he has used to refer to himself. In his answer, which seemed to be offered in humility, he said he is naught but a teacher – “at this point.” More Hmmm…

Please don’t tell me I’m obsessed with Denver. I’m just trying to analyze the remaining questions from the interview. I can’t wait for the next one in which I asked him about dancing on the Grand Mesa and calling for Mother in Heaven to manifest herself. His answer leaves no room for doubts. Some early students who listened to what Denver had to share have now turned away. But that’s for the next post.

Prophet, Servant, Messenger, Witness or simply Teacher…

Question Seven: I have heard you say, and read in many places in your books and on your blog, you dislike the public attention received as a result of performing the assignments given you by the Lord. You’ve been emphatic we should not replace one idol with another. Yet the people look to you for leadership. For example, in the Phoenix lecture you provided some direction on tithing, the sacrament, ordinations, worship or fellowship groups, and in particular, the requirement that the approval of seven women is needed to sustain a man in performing ordinances in public. You also said a man was unworthy – the Lord’s word – if his wife will not sustain him.

SnufferiteIn the Jewish tradition, when questions arise, everyone turns to the Rabbi. In the LDS Church, local leaders consult the handbook or turn to a General Authority for help with difficult procedural questions. You have stated you don’t like the term used by some – Snufferites – to describe those who read your writings. You have made it clear every man should have a sufficiently strong relationship with the Lord to get answers to procedural and doctrinal questions. Yet, you are the one the Lord sent as a servant, witness or messenger to declare the orderly dismantling of the established hierarchy. Does that not make you a prophet and de-facto leader?

Search the Scriptures for the Role of True Leaders

ANSWER (Denver): Let me clarify. I view my role only to be a teacher at this point. I hope to remain in that role alone. But I would hasten to add, that if you search the scriptures to look at what role was occupied by Enoch and the success that he had in his day, the only thing he claimed to be was a teacher and a preacher of repentance. That’s it. The success he had was not because he was some great dictator, it was because he was a teacher that provoked people to repent.

Melchizedek, Joseph Smith clarified, was not a king of a city, or king of a country, he just preached. He was a teacher and a preacher. He preached and the people, according to the Book of Mormon who heard him, Alma clarifies that they were wicked people, but they repented. (Alma 13:17-18.) And because they repented they were able to gather and live the principles that brought them together.

kirtland-temple-teachingI think the idea of a strong central leader is no more likely to succeed in our day than it was in Joseph’s. At the end, when Joseph lamented that the people were depending too much on the prophet, and they were neglecting the duties that were devolving upon themselves, therefore they were darkened in their minds. (TPJS, p. 237-238.) It was too late. In 1842 when he made that comment in the meeting of the Relief Society, it was too late. The moment had passed. They were dependent upon him. I try to learn from earlier examples and not repeat the same errors. If there are errors to be made, I want them to be new ones, not a repetition of the same old ones that caused the failure before.

The Strong Man Principle – Doomed to Fail

The responsibility of preaching the Gospel is to take the burden and put it upon the individual; to have the individual connect to God. One man being saved and saying, “I’ve got a pipeline to God, and so now I get to be your boss,” won’t save him nor those who listen to him. But someone who says, “God is willing to speak, and does speak to every one of you,” and who teaches to encourage you to use the gifts that God gives every one of us, that teacher may help others. All individuals have gifts, and curious though some of them may be, all of us have some kind of gift. Use it to reconnect to God. And then build upon that to have your life filled with light and truth.

denver-snuffer-booksI really think it is unnecessary to build a new canon of scripture when we haven’t paid enough attention to the canon of scripture we have already. We need to plumb the depths of the volumes that we have been given and figure out what they are saying, because they say whole lot more than we have drawn out of them as yet. What I’ve talked about in the 10 lectures and in the 14 volumes I’ve written is the scriptures. Hopefully it serves to remind people of what the scriptures actually do contain, because they are plentiful. And I think the only role I would carve out for myself is a teacher.

Epilogue – A Few Closing Thoughts

Denver’s answer here was rather short. I suspect there is so much more that he could have shared. His humility is evident, at least to me. I like the man. Carol does not. She sees what he has done or is doing as divisive. I see it as fulfilling a deep-seated and long-held request from the Lord to understand Zion and how I can participate in the bringing forth of the latter-day Temple. Lord, I ask to be used in this area.

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 seven: http://3tcm.net/question-seven.pdf

 

11 Responses

  1. My thoughts on the true order of prayer:

    It’s not about altars, names, tokens, or signs. It’s about the things they represent.

    Once you are keeping covenants of obedience & sacrifice, gospel, chastity, consecration, and have charity–no ill feelings toward your neighbor–then you are ready to receive power to pray in a way that God will grant unto you the things you pray, because you won’t ask for anything you shouldn’t.

    Nephi being the example of one who prays a true prayer:

    Helaman 10: 5 And now, because thou hast done this with such unwearyingness, behold, I will bless thee forever; and I will make thee mighty in word and in deed, in faith and in works; yea, even that all things shall be done unto thee according to thy word, for thou shalt not ask that which is contrary to my will.

    6 Behold, thou art Nephi, and I am God. Behold, I declare it unto thee in the presence of mine angels, that ye shall have power over this people, and shall smite the earth with famine, and with pestilence, and destruction, according to the wickedness of this people.

    7 Behold, I give unto you power, that whatsoever ye shall seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven; and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven; and thus shall ye have power among this people.

    8 And thus, if ye shall say unto this temple it shall be rent in twain, it shall be done.
    etc.

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  2. “and who teaches to encourage you to use the gifts that God gives every one of us, that teacher may help others. All individuals have gifts, and curious though some of them may be, all of us have some kind of gift. Use it to reconnect to God. And then build upon that to have your life filled with light and truth.”

    So, what gifts are these whose use will reconnect us to God? I associate virtually with some folks with healing gifts. I imagine that as they grow in their gifts they will tap into the Lord’s power to bless His children. They will know what it feels like to serve and bless the lives of others, as our Savior did. They will learn to give all glory to God, and not keep any for themselves. I think I have (at times at least) the gift of teaching. I can understand that I may help others with it, but how will it help me?

    Thanks for this, Tim.

    Steve

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  3. We are now ready to be taught the true order of prayer. Great now that you know it, make sure you never use it for yourself…..I never really thingy about it that way.

    6 months back a family member was having an extremely difficult time. We were all together as family about 8 of us and I got the impression that we should form a circle and go around each saying a prayer. It was a very important moving and spiritual experience and I’m convinced it looked the person through a suicidal time.

    Now we didn’t join hands, we just knelt in a circle but it occurred to me that we were kind of doing the true order of prayer at least in part.

    This also reminds of the time I felt impressed to consecrate my own oil right after I received the priesthood. I followed the directions with the approved oil and felt very edified by the experience only great feelings of approval.

    I later told my bishop and his face dropped, he looked very concerned. He told me that was an ordinance that should typically be performed by the elders quorum and to ask for permission first before doing that. I felt horrible! He was a great by the way…..just doing what he thought was right.

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    • I’ve always blessed my oil at home.

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      • Yep, there shouldn’t be anything weird about consecrating your own oil. The Handbook says “One or more Melchizedek Priesthood holders must consecrate olive oil before it is used…”, so it sounds like you can do it by yourself, alone.

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    • Wow, I’ve never heard that. You have the priesthood, you can consecrate your own oil. It is not reserved for the Elder’s Quorum. I have seen it done that way, simply because they consecrate a larger bottle and share it amongst the group, but that is the only reason. Not sure what this bishop was thinking.

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  4. With the increase in natural calamities, strange events, wickedness abounding, 2015 is ratcheting up in amazing leaps and bounds.I have spent years watching for events. I am almost 45 and happened upon my journal for them early 90’s. I would write down an event and think…OK here it comes only to wait months and months for another event. This year it seems there is no rest in my journal. I fear that the coming years will see a paper shortage for me. With all of these things happening I notice one huge trend that started last year. I live outside Utah with the heathens. You expect wickedness to abound. I am not ignorant of Utah either. I know there has always, or at least in the time of the states large population, been many who show up on Sunday but do as they please the rest. We traveled to Utah last year for conference. My brother had recently moved to SL area. I was desperate and being prompted to get out of California. Hubby and I decided to move to Utah.Eventually we were led away from Utah by the spirit. I was disappointed and more depressed when he led us back to the North West where I swore I would never go. I am now grateful. I see his plan more fully now. This brings me to why I am not in Utah apparently. Being a seeker of knowledge I have always had a healthy dose of do not stray fear. I did not always follow but that is another story. I have seen things that most LDS women will never comprehend. Along the way I have been allowed to witness enough to be leary of all people at first. I rely heavily on the spirit and gift of discernment. I know I am not smart enough without them. Because of this I have seen through many people that others thought were wonderful only to be caught in their trap. Not being in Utah we do not get the scandals as much. We are not a part of the culture. There is no radio stations dedicated to LDS listeners. We don’t have all the latest books at the grocery store. We have to search out these things so we miss much. Over the last two years I have seen a trend. I hear more and more people speak of books and talks on visions, dreams etc. I see a pattern in all of this. People hold on to every word that person says. They compare it to church teaching and doctrines. Every person who follows says the same thing. “It is in line with what the brethren or early church says When something odd is said they dismiss it and point to the larger body of evidence. It has brought me to a place of deep concern. I have family members that hold tight to myth and what so and so said as law. they are not weak but follow. I can not help but see so clearly that the “yet” is a set up for later following. People of much intellectual thinking often miss the basics of what is being said in searching for deeper meaning. At the same time I see those who tend to follow and parrot scripture that we all know search out grand thoughts and ideas without the work. In the end I fear much of the church is being slowly led away. First it is a book and when they come to their senses on who this person is they are disillusioned but continue to search for the next. These last few years have brought more and more “miracle” speakers to the table. I am reminded always that even if some is true that they are still not official speakers of God. Perhaps instead of asking if these people are telling the truth that we should be searching for the will of god that we might see what we need. Not his full grand design like so many are doing. The true nature of prayer, alters,,,,,all these things only serve to make you knowledgeable in the ways of the Lord but not in his will for you and your life. This man may be a teacher but he does not know what you personally need for your life. Julie Rowe speaks of call outs so everyone freaks out. Instead we were inspired to move here. We used all of our savings to do it I had to leave food storage behind which killed me. Had I listened to my friends I would have stayed in CAL. and not been able to see the miracles has worked in our lives. He knows us individually. we must only follow him and who he appoints. It is time to prepare our families and give service and love each other. Not to find the secrets of the Lord from a teacher who is not authorized to speak for God to begin with. Each member needs to ask for the will of the father. You can never be led away by asking for your own direction..I have no time to edit so sorry. Good luck

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  5. And yet the scriptures say very little.

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  6. Regarding the blessing of oil.

    Reply to Niklas didn’t cascade properly.

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  7. I’m not saying this to judge anyone at all. I just think it’s interesting that some use the “divisive” nature of Denver’s message as evidence that he was not sent by Christ.

    Wasn’t the Lord, by his own definition, divisive by nature? In Matthew 10, he says:

    34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

    35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

    36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

    I can’t help but think of the parable in “Ten Parables” about the mighty horse Ajax, whose actual attributes of strength and ferocity were considered too vulgar and undignified by those who had never been in his presence, but yet revered their own version of him.

    Is the Lord not both a lion and a lamb, lying together in the same personage? Is not also every servant of His the same, who will be saved because they seek to be precisely what He is?

    I can’t think of a prophet who was not divisive in the eyes of the world.

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  8. Tim, so Denver has no respect for people who call themselves Snufferites or Denverites, so what does he think of people who dedicate blogs, websites and forums to discuss his teachings?

    It is obvious to some of us that Denver is setting himself up as a leader. As I have said so many times, why does anyone want to preserve an Aaronic restoration when God has so much more to give us? It is going backwards, not forwards. The subtlety of Denver’s words are very interesting to me. He says he is not a prophet, he considers himself JUST a teacher and then immediately he is programming all of you to shift your minds from thinking of Enoch and Melchezidek as anything other than teachers. Does anyone understand about the energy of programming? Do you not see what is happening? Maybe I’ll be completely banned by Tim for voicing my concerns. But I have experienced “programming” before and therefore can speak from experience.

    There are websites and forums and blogs dedicated to Denver instead of Jesus Christ … Why is that? You are jumping from one ship of idol worship to another, except that the LDS church is a huge ship and Denver’s ship is pitifully small.

    Denver no longer posts hardly anything about Jesus Christ … it is about Joseph Smith and the restoration. Until you all stop worshipping mortals and turn all your focus to Jesus, you will receive exactly what you want … If what you want is the Aaronic restoration … you’ll have it. I want the Church of the Firstborn … I want higher priesthood.

    Are you willing to give up the past in order to have a new future? Are you willing to give up Denver in order to experience God yourself? Some believe Denver is humble, yet why would a humble follower of Jesus feel compelled to write a blog post throwing his friends underneath the bus? How many times has Denver written that we need to allow people to believe what they want to? And yet he goes against his own teaching. And it’s not the first time … Hmmm ….

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