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.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

What do have the right to require by law of those not of our faith

The answer to this question is that we have a right to require, by law, those truths which all mankind have access to by nature of having the light of Christ.

God holds nobody accountable for knowledge they do not have, but he holds even the heathen nations accountable for that knowledge they do have. And what knowledge do they have? All mankind has the light of Christ, and through that means, there are some truths that God requires accountability for from all of his children.

The most basic of these truths used to be known, in our own country, as part of common decency. I don't mean common decency in the sense of helping older people in need or lending your neighbor sugar. Those are good to do, but have absolutely no place in the law. I mean the the sort of decency which God has required of heathen nations in the scriptures, and destroyed them for violating.

Such principles include:

You cannot kill your children.
You cannot commit adultery
You cannot engage in homosexuality
You cannot engage in beastiality

All of which are listed by Jehovah in the scriptures as reasons he had destroyed the heathen nations that lived in Israel before the Israelites. In this same discussion (Leviticus 18) there is enough coverage of whose nakedness is not OK to look on that, with a little common sense about the existing list, we could fairly add:

You cannot distribute pornography

These truths both once were, and should by right still be, required by law of our own citizens.

The most controversial one is probably the adultery one. After all, even the best societies still have members committing adultery. Brigham Young complained about "some few" members doing so. But there is a difference in a society that approves of it, and one that does not, and is able to extact some nature of penalty for violating it.

To our current culture's mindset a law against adultery is downright unamerican. But your ancestors passed such laws in most states of the United States, and in some states it was even a felony.

A law against pornography sounds like a violation of basic rights to many modern ears. But just listen to Ezra Taft Benson who is primarily quoting NON member sources about 50 years ago.

Postal inspectors in York City recently raided one dealer in pornography. They confiscated seventeen tons of highly obscene printed and filmed materials.

Reports from police chiefs and sheriffs indicate the tie-up. Here are typical statements from city officials in Massachusetts, Colorado, and Pennsylvania:
"Teenager criminally assaults 16-year-old girl. Search of his room revealed 50 pornographic pictures beneath his mattress."
"Student molesting two teenage girls found to have pornographic literature in glove compartment of his car."
Let me quote from a report of a Senate subcommittee that has studied this problem. The report says in part:
"There is a peculiar resemblance to narcotics addiction in exposure of juveniles to pornography. There is the same pattern of progression. Once initiated into a knowledge of the unnatural, the impressionable young mind with the insatiable curiosity characteristic of those reaching for maturity inevitably hunts for something stronger, something with more 'jolt,' something imparting a greater thrill.
"The dealer in pornography is acutely aware of this progressive facet; his array of material to feed this growing hunger is carefully geared to the successive stages. Like the peddler of narcotics, his only interest is to insure that his customers are 'hooked.' He knows that once they are 'hooked' they will continue to pay and pay."
These are some of the direct results of the smut campaign. There are indirect results too. Our children, our wives, our friends, may be the horrified victims of criminals who are triggered by obscene materials.

We do not expect a sudden return to morality. But we cannot reasonably fight for morality in law if we don't even believe it is allowable to require morality in law at any level.

What is right to require in the law? Well, if God can destroy a nation for failing to obey a thing, then he is holding them accountable in the worst possible way for it. He feels like they violated something sacred which they should have known better than to do. Your city isn't destroyed by an act of God for something he doesn't expect of you, or something that would be unfair to require of you. Those cities that were destroyed or threatened with destruction in many cases were populated exclusively or almost exclusively by people who were not members of the true church. Yet the Lord destroyed them. Why? Because, in fact, they did know better. A just God would not have destroyed them if they didn't. They had the light of Christ. They knew, when they married their sweetheart that to have intimacy behind her back was wrong. They knew, when they were children, that they wanted their father and mother to be true to each other. They knew, their own biology bearing witness as well as the light of Christ, that bestiality and homosexuality were perversions of God's intended purpose for them. They knew at some point that children were precious gifts, and to kill their own children was horribly wrong. These things were all listed by God as reasons he destroyed cities and nations that were made up of those not of the true faith. Their own religion may well have endorsed these things. In fact, these things were actually part of their own religion in some cases, such as sacrificing their children to Molech. But even though their religion said these things was OK, God still destroyed them for these things. He knew that in reality they knew better. He clearly stated that he destroyed them, as well as the reasons he did so.

These are basic principles of conscience that God requires of all mankind. These  are principles that the law has a right to require of all citizens regardless of their faith. If God will destroy a nation for violating these principles, then a nation has the right to require these principles of its citizens by law.

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