Notes for my writing

This blog is made up of notes on the gospel as found in the only true and living church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This includes notes that are either excerpts from or ideas for books I either have in draft or may yet write.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

I am trying out a different blogging site

For various reasons I have been trying out wordpress, if you want to take a look at my new blog over there, you can find it at:

https://mormonmortal.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Not a matter of priesthood, but of gender

There are some women these days that want the priesthood. They think that if they could only have the priesthood than their responsibilities would be different.

But it is not because of the priesthood that men are given the responsibility to lead

It is because they are men.

Such was declared by the father in Eden.

It is not a matter of priesthood. It is a matter of gender.

In these days we have forgotten that men and women are fundmentally different. We think we can make them the same by putting them in the same clothes, and treating them the same way, and having them do exactly the same thing up until marriage, and after marriage having them do as much of the same thing as the realities of human physiology and reproduction allow.

And that is utter crap.

Men and women are fundamentally different.

Right from the beginning, God gave different commandments and different punishments to Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden.

I'm not sure the full weight of that has sunk into our minds. But let me at least try and offer a hint.

The declarations made by God the Father himself on this earth are those things which define the foundation. They define gender and family. They are the foundation stone which all else which is good must be built on.

And the Father gave DIFFERENT commandments to Adam and Eve.

They have different foundations laid for them. They are different from square one. They are given different foundations on which their exaltation will be built.

Sure, it will be built on obedience and the virtues of the gospel. But the commandments they are trying to keep are different. They are as different as the different commandments given in differing dispensations.

Which is obvious really. Exaltation is about family. Adam and Eve have different parts to play to establish a family. If exaltation is eternal family, and Adam and Eve are different parts of the family, then it should be obvious that Adam and Eve have different requirements for exaltation.

Adam and Eve have different conditions for their exaltation, because they were given different commandments by the Father in Eden.

For Adam to try and gain exaltation by following the commandment given to Eve is as apostate as for Peter to reject Christ's commandment to "feed his sheep" and to instead start building an ark and gathering animals into it two by two, hoping for exaltation founded in God's commandment to Noah.

For Eve to try and gain exaltation following the commandment given to Adam is equally wrong. She cannot go out and sacrifice her only son and hope to find exaltation in obedience to the commandment given to Abraham.

This doctrine is all through the scriptures.

Paul writes one command to the women, and another commandment to the men. He tells the men to love their wives even as Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it. He tells the wives to obey their husbands even as the church obeys Christ.

Why different commandments from Paul?

Because Paul knows the doctrine. He saw the third heaven. He is not a man speaking based on random opinions. It is the elephant in the room of the scriptures. It is all through them. The women of the church obtain exaltation. But we don't read about them doing the same thing as the men. And why? Is God not concerned about the exaltation of his daughters? Is it a technical matter of who has the priesthood?

No. No. No. Of course God is concerned about the exaltation of his daughters and has been through the dispensations. We don't read of them doing the same thing in the scriptures as the men not because they were spiritually less valuable, but because they accomplish the task required for exaltation by doing the works God required of them for exaltation, which are different than what God requires of the men.

Joseph Smith spoke with the Father, and was called to be a prophet. Mary, the Mother of Christ, knew more, and pursued the path of her exaltation. Peter walked on water, Mary wept at her resurrected husband's feet as he spoke her name.  One was called to feed God's sheep, the other found her exaltation quite differently. One was a boy, the other was a girl. Both heeded the commands of the Father and are no longer men but are Gods.

It is the wisdom of the world that would instead recast that blaring difference in the scriptures as a vice, rather than as both righteous men and righteous women pursuing and obtaining the eternal prize.

The conditions for exaltation for a man and a woman are as different as the commandments to Adam and Eve were in the garden of Eden.

You may disagree and say all people are saved on the same conditions. In one sense, yes, the conditions for exaltation are the same for men and for woman. This is plainly taught. The conditions are obedience and acquiring the virtues in the scriptures. The conditions are to put off the natural man and become a saint, submissive to his Father's will even as a child submits to his parent.

That is the sameness. And it is also the difference.

It is the sameness because it is the task that must be accomplished by all who seek exaltation whether male or female.

And it is the difference because the commandments God laid out from the beginning for men and women are different. To submit to the will of the father is submitting to a different commandment for Adam than it is for Eve.

The condition for exaltation is, ultimately, whether we will follow our Savior's example and submit our will completely to the will of our Father.

Consequently, the conditions for exaltation for a man and a woman are as different as the commandments to Adam and Eve were in the garden of Eden.








Monday, February 29, 2016

You cannot have more faith in todays prophet than you had in yesterdays prophets

My wife consistently deals with people pressuring her to believe a great lie. It is the lie that you can have more faith in today's prophet than you can in yesterday's prophet, and that we cannot stand by both of them together, and thus must discard the early prophets of this dispensation that we can fully be devoted to the prophets of this day.

Is Christ divided?

What do the scriptures say of those who are of Paul, and of Apollos, and of Cephas?

D&C 76: 99 For these [the telestial] are they who are of Paul, and of Apollos, and of Cephas.
100 These are they who say they are some of one and some of another—some of Christ and some of John, and some of Moses, and some of Elias, and some of Esaias, and some of Isaiah, and some of Enoch;
101 But received not the gospel, neither the testimony of Jesus, neither the prophets, neither the everlasting covenant.

And that is, at least in part, because you cannot receive only part of the gospel and only some of the prophets and be a true latter day saint.

You can shoot your faith in the foot by rejecting today's prophets and apostles, and not recognizing them for what they are. And you can shoot your faith in the foot by rejecting yesterday's prophets and apostles.

And if you shoot your faith in the right foot so that you are are forced to place your full weight on your left you may feel confident in that choice for a moment. Standing there pretentiously poised you may feel strong. But once you need to start walking forward along the strait and narrow path, you will find that it climbs upward in places, and that you have slowed your pace to a hop and thoroughly crippled your ability to traverse its steeper moments.

You cannot believe that the man at the head of the church today holds all the keys of the kingdom and that the man at the head of the church yesterday did not. You cannot sustain todays prophets and apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators more sincerely than you can sustain yesterdays prophets and apostles. Todays leaders obtained their keys from yesterdays leaders. They are one in Christ.

God will not bestow an extra measure of his spirit spirit for embracing one prophet if you do so while poking another in the eye.

Did they not testify by the same spirit of God? And as they spoke by the same spirit of God, can we reject either without offending that same spirit?

Other churches pick and choose among the words of the prophets, believing this from one and that from another. But with with us it is not so. We only have a living prophet because we previously had living prophets. We only have living apostles because we previously had living apostles. There are no revolutions, no coups, no toppling of former governments in God's true church. There is God. And he is the head. And when we reject the words of one of his prophets ancient of modern, we do so at our peril.


Brigham Young quote

Brigham Young: As this kingdom of God grows, spreads, increases, and prospers in its course, it will cleanse, thoroughly purge, and purify the world from wickedness.

Very short note - God reveals things different than man expects, but god is always right

God reveals things different than man expects, but god is always right.


Quick note on the inspired version

Just a small note: It is interesting to compare the different versions of the Inspired Version of the bible, as it has sometimes been called.

I had noted differences between two different references, so out of curiosity I am copying those verses out of each one to see what I get [Spoiler: for these verses the 1944 and 1970 editions turned out to agree].


Romans 1:28
-----------------
1867 Inspired Version Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge,, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, according to some to do those things which are not convenient;

1944 Inspired Version Romans 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God according to some knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient.

1970 Inspired Version Romans 1:28  And even as they did not like to retain God according to some knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;


Romans 1:32
-----------------
1867 Inspired Version Romans 1:32 And some knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are inexcusable, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

1944 Inspired Version Romans 1:32 And some who, knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, are inexcusable, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

1970 Inspired Version Romans 1:32 And some who, knowing the judgement of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, are inexcusable, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

In both cases the 1944 and 197 editions turn out to agree. The 1867 edition is different, and of course the KJV is different.

As a side note, the LDS scriptures does not contain all of the JST changes and shows very few of the changes in Romans 1. It doesn't include JST footnotes for either verse 28 or 32. I am not sure whether or not it even contains most of the JST changes in the bible. At the time the JST footnotes were added to the scriptures the brethren were perfectly clear that only the JST changes that were largest or most significant were included.

As a further side note it is quite easy to get a free electronic copy of the 1867 version photographed from the actual book, which is in the public domain.

There is an online version of the 1944 edition, which I assume to have represented a significant revision since my 1970 edition copy lists that as the one it is descended from.

The 1970 edition claims it is a "new corrected edition".

Certainly the 1944 and 1970 versions of Romans 1:32 (which are the same) seem to fit better than the 1867. They know the judgement of God which is that such are worthy of death as the Lord plainly laid out to the Israelites. It just feels right. It fits the scriptures.








Nephi's comments on Isaiah and Isaiah's vision of the Lord

Just a quick note about these verses.

2 Nephi 11:2 And now I, Nephi, write more of the words of Isaiah, for my soul delighteth in his words. For I will liken his words unto my people, and I will send them forth unto all my children, for he verily saw my Redeemer, even as I have seen him.
3 And my brother, Jacob, also has seen him as I have seen him; wherefore, I will send their words forth unto my children to prove unto them that my words are true. Wherefore, by the words of three, God hath said, I will establish my word. Nevertheless, God sendeth more witnesses, and he proveth all his words.

Nephi writes that "... for he verily saw my Redeemer, even as I have seen him. And my brother, Jacob, also has seen him as I have seen him; wherefore, I will send their words forth unto my children to prove unto them that my words are true".

We often read this, but I don't think I have ever heard it connected to the fact that after Nephi gives us this introduction in 2 Nephi 11, he then quotes Isaiah chapters 2-14, which includes Isaiah's account of his vision of the Lord found in 2 Nephi 16.