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california boy

A Prophet of God

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Perhaps the biggest thing that exited me and drew me to the church is the bold assertion that God speaks to man through a living prophet. It is this one belief that separates the Mormon church from any other.  All other churches by their own admission decide their doctrine by men. Either a small group or more by a common vote.  But no matter how their doctrine comes to them, it is by sincere men.  

Wow.  A prophet of God. The mouthpiece of God on earth. Christ running His church because He personally directs it through His prophet. Doctrine is not decided by committee.  It is declared by that prophet who received it by revelation. Without that claim, the church becomes just like any other.  

Has this belief left the church?  The one thing that is clear is that the church is no longer clear whether something is a decision decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church) or if doctrine came directly to a prophet of God through his stewardship as Gods mouthpiece.  As a result we have endless threads about what is doctrine and what is policy  

I personally don't care one way or another. I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God. And no they are not the same thing.  If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion. 

 
Edited by california boy

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6 hours ago, california boy said:
Perhaps the biggest thing that exited me and drew me to the church is the bold assertion that God speaks to man through a living prophet. It is this one belief that separates the Mormon church from any other.  All other churches by their own admission decide their doctrine by men. Either a small group or more by a common vote.  But no matter how their doctrine comes to them, it is by sincere men.  

Wow.  A prophet of God. The mouthpiece of God on earth. Christ running His church because He personally directs it through His prophet. Doctrine is not decided by committee.  It is declared by that prophet who received it by revelation. Without that claim, the church becomes just like any other.  

Has this belief left the church?  The one thing that is clear is that the church is no longer clear whether something is a decision decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church) or if doctrine came directly to a prophet of God through his stewardship as Gods mouthpiece.  As a result we have endless threads about what is doctrine and what is policy  

I personally don't care one way or another. I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God. And no they are not the same thing.  If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion.  

So the vagaries of institutionalized religion are not as exciting as the original burst of prophetic energy.  Yet that is the inevitable result, and every sociological analysis will show that tendency.  Methodists were once very spiritual "holy rollers," swooning during powerful tent revivals, yet look how staid they have become.

The Pope is the Vicar of Christ on Earth, and he is a prophet when speaking ex cathedra.  And Roman Catholicism still accepts visions and miracles from ordinary members, as well as from its priesthood, monks, and nuns, often making "saints" of them.  Yet, of course, there is nothing more bureaucratic than the Roman curia and the canon lawyers which inhabit it.

Jerald & Sandra Tanner injected new life into Mormonism by reprinting so many of the early documents of dynamic prophetic activity.  They succeeded in emphasizing the differences between the church of Joseph and the modern church, which only improved the modern church and forced it to directly confront its past.  Painful for some, but certainly a reason to say that the sum total of the Tanners' work was to strengthen the LDS Church -- the conclusion of non-Mormon historian Larry Foster of Georgia Tech.  See his "Career Apostates: Reflections on the [Life and] Work of Jerald and Sandra Tanner," Dialogue, 17/2 (Summer 1984):35-60, online at https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V17N02_37.pdf .

Edited by Robert F. Smith

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1 hour ago, Kevin Christensen said:

One of the consequences of "either/or" thinking is that it can so easily overlook obvious evidence and information, and short-circuit careful analysis.

D&C 1, for instance, in formally stating "mine authority and the authority of my servants" does not declare that we should expect that everything that church leaders do or say is what Christ himself would do or say.  Nor does D&C 1 say that other churches always lack inspiration.  Quite the opposite.   So in stating the problem this way, you demonstrate that the map you are using does not actually correspond to the territory that actually exists.  It's easy to get lost when you follow an inaccurate map.

And there is the issue of supposing that you don't have to define "doctrine" or respond even to the way Jesus defines and limits what "doctrine" means.  And the issue of defining what a prophet is, and is not.  And there is the issue of supposing that just about any Tom, ****, or Harriet can authoritatively judge whether a "doctrine" is or is not from God, or even ought to be called a doctrine by an informed person in a public setting, or whether something that a committee or a prophet is or is not inspired, and whether this or that hot-button issue represents all the evidence and all the sampling that should be considered in making the judgement.  Isaiah 55 is notable for explaining that God's perspectives and ways take a much longer, process-oriented view of things, suggesting that singing "I Want It Now!" like the apt song sung by the rich girl in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory demonstrates a lack of vision, a lack of discernment, a lack of faith, a lack of patience, a lack of empathy, a lack of wisdom.

There is a difference between looking at various goings on in LDS and Christian and human societies, and declaring "That is not what I expect!" and looking at the same societies, and seriously exploring "What should I expect?"  It amounts to first removing the beam from one's own eye, to enhance the possibility of seeing clearly.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

 

You have a lot in your post. I am not exactly sure what you are telling me.  Do you think my expectations for someone claiming to be a prophet of God is too much?

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7 hours ago, california boy said:
 

Perhaps the biggest thing that exited me and drew me to the church is the bold assertion that God speaks to man through a living prophet. It is this one belief that separates the Mormon church from any other.  All other churches by their own admission decide their doctrine by men. Either a small group or more by a common vote.  But no matter how their doctrine comes to them, it is by sincere men.  

Wow.  A prophet of God. The mouthpiece of God on earth. Christ running His church because He personally directs it through His prophet. Doctrine is not decided by committee.  It is declared by that prophet who received it by revelation. Without that claim, the church becomes just like any other.  

Has this belief left the church?  The one thing that is clear is that the church is no longer clear whether something is a decision decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church) or if doctrine came directly to a prophet of God through his stewardship as Gods mouthpiece.  As a result we have endless threads about what is doctrine and what is policy  

I personally don't care one way or another. I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God. And no they are not the same thing.  If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion. 

 

Hard part is we can't know any more.
The FP & Qof12 are so determined to present the face of unity that we can never tell which policies and statements started in committee and which came by revelation to the Prophet.

In the past:
1. The prophet received a revelation (the word of the Lord)
2. The revelation was presented to the General Authorities in quorum and they discussed/accepted it.
3. It was presented to the Church for a common consent vote.

Now, we hardly ever get to know if #1 happened.  People generally assume, but we know little beyond #3.
 

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1 hour ago, Robert F. Smith said:

So the vagaries of institutionalized religion are not as exciting as the original burst of prophetic energy.  Yet that is the inevitable result, and every sociological analysis will show that tendency.  Methodists were once very spiritual "holy rollers," swooning during powerful tent revivals, yet look how staid they have become.

The Pope is the Vicar of Christ on Earth, and he is a prophet when speaking ex cathedra.  And Roman Catholicism still accepts visions and miracles from ordinary members, as well as from its priesthood, monks, and nuns, often making "saints" of them.  Yet, of course, there is nothing more bureaucratic than the Roman curia and the canon lawyers which inhabit it.

Jerald & Sandra Tanner injected new life into Mormonism by reprinting so many of the early documents of dynamic prophetic activity.  They succeeded in emphasizing the differences between the church of Joseph and the modern church, which only improved the modern church and forced it to directly confront its past.  Painful for some, but certainly a reason to say that the sum total of the Tanners' work was to strengthen the LDS Church -- the conclusion of non-Mormon historian Larry Foster of Georgia Tech.  See his "Career Apostates: Reflections on the [Life and] Work of Jerald and Sandra Tanner," Dialogue, 17/2 (Summer 1984):35-60, online at https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V17N02_37.pdf .

Do you think that it was inevitable for the church to slip into the same pattern as every other Christian church?  Decisions decided by committee with a prophet more as a figurehead

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8 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

Hard part is we can't know any more.
The FP & Qof12 are so determined to present the face of unity that we can never tell which policies and statements started in committee and which came by revelation to the Prophet.

In the past:
1. The prophet received a revelation (the word of the Lord)
2. The revelation was presented to the General Authorities in quorum and they discussed/accepted it.
3. It was presented to the Church for a common consent vote.

Now, we hardly ever get to know if #1 happened.  People generally assume, but we know little beyond #3.
 

The church doesn't seem to even want to call it revelation any more 

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17 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

Hard part is we can't know any more.
The FP & Qof12 are so determined to present the face of unity that we can never tell which policies and statements started in committee and which came by revelation to the Prophet.

In the past:
1. The prophet received a revelation (the word of the Lord)
2. The revelation was presented to the General Authorities in quorum and they discussed/accepted it.
3. It was presented to the Church for a common consent vote.

Now, we hardly ever get to know if #1 happened.  People generally assume, but we know little beyond #3.
 

This.  I won't go back to the long discussion in the now locked thread...but that was my point there for the most part.   In my experience on that, some (many?) members want to personally hear more from God's spokesman when he receives a revelation.  

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ALarsen, Your posts prompted me to remember a time when I did think the prophet received actual revelation from God that was clear and understood and declared as a revelation not a committee decision that was voted on

Edited by california boy

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3 minutes ago, Kevin Christensen said:

It is better to test the claim that someone is a prophet against a viable definition of what a prophet is, rather than against what our expectations or desires are.  For instance,  in John 11, when Jesus comes to the tomb of Lazarus:

These people judge Jesus against what they arbitrarily decided that he could have and should have done.  In the process they demonstrate that even the good they acknowledge is not enough.  They want more, they want it yesterday.  If you make the pedestal tall enough, and narrow enough, it's easy to topple.

That is why I learned long ago, whenever I come across something I did not expect, I ask, what should I expect?   That shifts my attention from my personal frustrations, directed outward, toward beams in my own eye, which always turns out to be enlightening and mind expanding, and changes my perceptions.

FWIW

Kevin Christens 

Do you expect a prophet to receive revelation from God for the church?

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5 minutes ago, california boy said:

Do you expect a prophet to receive revelation from God for the church?

Yes. SEE Do you sustain the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as the Prophet, Seer, and Revelator and as the only person on the earth who possesses and is authorized to exercise all priesthood keys? Do you sustain members of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators? Do you sustain the other General Authorities and local authorities of the Church?

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2 minutes ago, california boy said:

Do you expect a prophet to receive revelation from God for the church?

Yes.  But I expect that such revelation is conditioned not just on human desire (the "I Want it Now!" song from Willy Wonka should be cause for reflection), but on human inquiry and effort, on God's will and designs (which is why Isaiah 55 is important), and on that interesting word that recurs in the Doctrine and Covenants, "expedience" from God's perspective.  And I see a considerable amount of evidence from life and the scripture that it is expedient at times to let people make their choices and walk by faith and learn from experience what is sweet and what is bitter.

Just because a person becomes a prophet, that does not mean they stop being human. Acts 14:15 " We are men of like passions with you."

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Canonsburg, PA

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When do you think was the last time a revelation from God for the church was declared as such by the prophet?

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1 minute ago, california boy said:

When do you think was the last time a revelation from God for the church was declared as such by the prophet?

OD 2

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4 minutes ago, california boy said:

When do you think was the last time a revelation from God for the church was declared as such by the prophet?

 

2 minutes ago, thesometimesaint said:

OD 2


Which would mean according to Amos 3:7 that God isn't doing much right now, nor for the last 30 years.

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12 minutes ago, cinepro said:

As long as people still believe in the claim about "authority", the Church should do okay.  But if anything happens that gets people to question whether maybe God might be okay with other groups that are similarly imperfect but well-intentioned, it could be big trouble.

That is already the case. Depending on the viewpoint, how one defines a denomination, there are from nine thousand to forty-one thousand different Christian denominations alone pretty much saying that God is okay with other groups that are similarly imperfect but well-intentioned. Of course those groups also mostly declare that the Mormons and Seventh Day-Adventists, etc. are not in that group.

Guess we will have to wait on God to separate the sheep from the goats.

Glenn

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8 hours ago, california boy said:
I personally don't care one way or another. I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God. And no they are not the same thing.  If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion. 
 

I have no first hand knowledge so this is complete speculation on my part, but I am going to guess that the 15 work things out by committee, have discussions amongst themselves, reason things out and ultimately reach a decision upon a vote is made to sustain the decision after they've prayed about it.  It is my belief that they interpret this process as revelation.  Long gone are the days when members should believe that Jesus has face to face personal priesthood interviews with these men.

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12 minutes ago, Button Gwinnett said:

I have no first hand knowledge so this is complete speculation on my part, but I am going to guess that the 15 work things out by committee, have discussions amongst themselves, reason things out and ultimately reach a decision upon a vote is made to sustain the decision after they've prayed about it.  It is my belief that they interpret this process as revelation.  Long gone are the days when members should believe that Jesus has face to face personal priesthood interviews with these men.

Do you think that is much different than how any other Christian sect makes policy and doctrinal decisions for their followers?

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17 minutes ago, Glenn101 said:

That is already the case. Depending on the viewpoint, how one defines a denomination, there are from nine thousand to forty-one thousand different Christian denominations alone pretty much saying that God is okay with other groups that are similarly imperfect but well-intentioned. Of course those groups also mostly declare that the Mormons and Seventh Day-Adventists, etc. are not in that group.

Guess we will have to wait on God to separate the sheep from the goats.

Glenn

So if someone picks the wrong sect when everyone is basically using the same process to decide doctrine  are they sheep or goats

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17 minutes ago, Button Gwinnett said:

I have no first hand knowledge so this is complete speculation on my part, but I am going to guess that the 15 work things out by committee, have discussions amongst themselves, reason things out and ultimately reach a decision upon a vote is made to sustain the decision after they've prayed about it.  It is my belief that they interpret this process as revelation.  Long gone are the days when members should believe that Jesus has face to face personal priesthood interviews with these men.

Not long gone.  But gone for quite some time.
And not necessarily gone forever either.  It is still Christ's Church.
Even if it is being run by prayerful men making the best decisions they can instead of Christ's personal direction.

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9 hours ago, california boy said:
Perhaps the biggest thing that exited me and drew me to the church is the bold assertion that God speaks to man through a living prophet. It is this one belief that separates the Mormon church from any other.  All other churches by their own admission decide their doctrine by men. Either a small group or more by a common vote.  But no matter how their doctrine comes to them, it is by sincere men.  

Wow.  A prophet of God. The mouthpiece of God on earth. Christ running His church because He personally directs it through His prophet. Doctrine is not decided by committee.  It is declared by that prophet who received it by revelation. Without that claim, the church becomes just like any other.  

Has this belief left the church?  The one thing that is clear is that the church is no longer clear whether something is a decision decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church) or if doctrine came directly to a prophet of God through his stewardship as Gods mouthpiece.  As a result we have endless threads about what is doctrine and what is policy  

I personally don't care one way or another. I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God. And no they are not the same thing.  If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion. 

This is the big myth about religion in general and Mormonism in particular.   Humans are in charge (usually men).  Religions are always run by people generally just doing the best they can with their limited understanding in the context of culture, and these people have flaws and biases.  This idea that Mormonism has something qualitatively more in tune with inspiration from God is just a value judgment that members place on this religion. 

There are no means for measuring this claim objectively and there is really no evidence of this claim.  I can't think of any arguments by Mormon apologists that would support any kind comparison between Mormonism and other religions that even attempts to objectively approach a comparison.  All the evidence given is made up of theological arguments based on scriptural interpretations uniquely supporting Mormonism.  

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9 hours ago, california boy said:
 

Perhaps the biggest thing that exited me and drew me to the church is the bold assertion that God speaks to man through a living prophet. It is this one belief that separates the Mormon church from any other.  All other churches by their own admission decide their doctrine by men. Either a small group or more by a common vote.  But no matter how their doctrine comes to them, it is by sincere men.  

 

Okay.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

Wow.  A prophet of God. The mouthpiece of God on earth. Christ running His church because He personally directs it through His prophet.

Yes.  But we cannot disregard the function of the councils of the Church.  Revelation comes through the Presiding High Priest (D&C 28:2-3), but he does not function alone.  See here:

Quote

The Twelve meet in the Salt Lake Temple, usually weekly, to transact all business that requires decisions by the Quorum. The Quorum normally brings the decisions it reaches to its meetings with the First Presidency. These two bodies together constitute the Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. This council takes final action on all matters that affect the Church, including new Church leadership callings; establishment of policies, procedures, and programs; creation, division, and reorganization of missions and stakes. Church priesthood quorums strive for unanimity in their decisions, in accordance with revelation (D&C 107:27). Until agreement is reached, the Quorum of the Twelve takes no action. Instead, the President of the Twelve usually defers the matter for reconsideration. Unanimity among the presiding quorums of the Church provides Church members with an assurance that "the united voice of the First Presidency and the Twelve" will never "lead the Saints astray or send forth counsel to the world that is contrary to the mind and will of the Lord" (Joseph Fielding Smith, Ensign 2 [July 1972]:88).

So the Presiding High Priest is the conduit through which church-wide revelation comes.  However, there is, for lack of a better term, a "ratification" function held by the Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

Doctrine is not decided by committee.  It is declared by that prophet who received it by revelation.

It is declared by the Presiding High Priest, but then must also be unanimously ratified by the Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (see D&C 107:27).

So the origins of the doctrine are revelatory, but the councils of the Church still play a mandatory role in the presentation of doctrine to the Church.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

Without that claim, the church becomes just like any other.  

I think "that claim" needs to include an acknowledgment of the role of the councils.  Those councils are guided by revelation and are invested with priesthood authority.  That, I think, is the characteristic which distinguishes ours from "any other {church}."

9 hours ago, california boy said:

Has this belief left the church?  

No.  Not at all.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

The one thing that is clear is that the church is no longer clear whether something is a decision decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church) or if doctrine came directly to a prophet of God through his stewardship as Gods mouthpiece.

I disagree.  The leaders of the Church profess to be guided by revelation, and also profess to have been invested with priesthood authority not found in other churches.

Further, the Brethren are called upon to make decisions all the time.  All.  The.  Time.  Most are administrative, and hence fall within the parameters of the assigned stewardships in the Church.   However, there are times when "decisions" must be made for the Church as a whole.  For that, there is a more complex process required (see D&C 107).  

Recently this board has been discussing the November 2015 policy change regarding same-sex marriage and children living in same-sex-parent households.  This, I think, is the "decision" you are alluding to.  I think you are hinting that the policy change was "decided by well meaning men doing what they think is their best understanding of the will of God (just like every other church)."

Well, the answer to that is "no."  President Nelson's made some January 2016 remarks during a worldwide broadcast to the "millennials" of the Church, which remarks were subsequently transcribed and published to the world.  In his remarks he clarified how the policy change came to be:

Quote

We sustain 15 men who are ordained as prophets, seers, and revelators. When a thorny problem arises—and they only seem to get thornier each day—these 15 men wrestle with the issue, trying to see all the ramifications of various courses of action, and they diligently seek to hear the voice of the Lord. After fasting, praying, studying, pondering, and counseling with my Brethren about weighty matters, it is not unusual for me to be awakened during the night with further impressions about issues with which we are concerned. And my Brethren have the same experience.

The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles counsel together and share all the Lord has directed us to understand and to feel individually and collectively. And then we watch the Lord move upon the President of the Church to proclaim the Lord’s will.

This prophetic process was followed ... with the recent additions to the Church’s handbook, consequent to the legalization of same-sex marriage in some countries. Filled with compassion for all, and especially for the children, we wrestled at length to understand the Lord’s will in this matter. Ever mindful of God’s plan of salvation and of His hope for eternal life for each of His children, we considered countless permutations and combinations of possible scenarios that could arise. We met repeatedly in the temple in fasting and prayer and sought further direction and inspiration. And then, when the Lord inspired His prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, to declare the mind of the Lord and the will of the Lord, each of us during that sacred moment felt a spiritual confirmation. It was our privilege as Apostles to sustain what had been revealed to President Monson. Revelation from the Lord to His servants is a sacred process, and so is your privilege of receiving personal revelation.

These remarks are nearly two years old.  So the source of the policy change is clear.  There is no good faith question about how the Brethren have presented it, which is as arising from a revelation given through President Monson and sustained by the other members of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve.

You are, of course, at liberty to not believe in the revelatory origins of the policy change as described by President Nelson.  

9 hours ago, california boy said:

As a result we have endless threads about what is doctrine and what is policy  

Just like we have endless threads about several disputed issues.

Personally, I have found these remarks (attributed to Elder Bednar, and summarized by the author) to be a useful resource for considering "what is doctrine and what is policy):

Quote

What are Doctrines, Principles & Applications?

doctrines-principles-applications.jpg

Ever find yourself thinking “I’m not quite sure I really know the definition of that word”? If not, then you are amazing and I applaud you.

...

A few days ago, I was discussing a particular study method with a friend and one step in the process was: “identifying and understanding doctrines and principles”. So as I commonly do, I asked myself “so what’s the difference between a doctrine and a principle”. The more I thought about it, I realized that I didn’t have a clear definition for either in my mind.

I decided to go back to a book that a friend gave me for Christmas called  “Act in Doctrine” by David A. Bednar. On pages xiv-xv in the Preface he defines what doctrines and principles are and then notes a third essential element: Applications. I’ve boiled down his descriptions into the following simplified versions:

  • Doctrines: eternal truths revealed by God.
  • Principles: doctrinally based guidelines for the exercise of agency.
  • Applications: actions we take in response to doctrines and principles.

Elder Bednar points out that “Our tendency as members of the Church is to focus on applications. But as we learn to ask ourselves, ‘What doctrines and principles, if understood, would help with this challenge?’ we come to realize that the answers always are in the doctrines and principles of the gospel” (pg. xv)

Doctrines answer the question of “why” and Elder Bednar suggests that the doctrine of the Atonement explains why Jesus is our advocate with the Father. He writes that principles answer the question of “what”; some examples are repentance, baptism, service, charity, etc. Applications answer the question of “how”, and provide the specifics of how something needs to be done. While the Church does teach applications, like in the case of ordinances and administrative duties, etc., it is necessary that many applications are individually personalized to us by the Spirit.

For instance, the doctrine that God is our Father and that he is willing to commune with us requires that we learn the principle of prayer. The Church offers guidelines on how to appropriately address Heavenly Father but it does not tell us what to say. Likewise, the principle of Sabbath Day observance does not have a long list of rules, we are expected to find our own applications by listening to the guidance of the Spirit.

This is where I think we make the largest mistakes in our gospel instruction. Instead of focusing on the doctrine and principles in our teaching, a teacher can be tempted to teach their application as the gospel truth. If perhaps one day you happened to pray to God while facing east and wearing flip-flops and had an amazingly profound experience, you should not teach that everyone should pray facing east and wearing flip-flops.

If you feel that caffeine is the reason that coffee and tea are against the Word of Wisdom, you probably should not be teaching that as doctrine. By focusing our understanding on doctrines and principles, we will be assisting the Spirit to teach the proper applications that are individually necessary.

An excellent treatise, IMO!

9 hours ago, california boy said:

I personally don't care one way or another.

Then why start a thread on the subject?

9 hours ago, california boy said:

I wish the church would just be more clear whether church policy is coming by committee or declared by revelation through a spokesman from God.

I think the Church was quite clear as to the origins of the November 2015 policy change.  Very clear, indeed.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

And no they are not the same thing.  

They can be.  See above.

Not all church policies are "revelatory."  The Church has a policy prohibiting the use of the kitchens in church buildings for the preparation of food (warming and serving, yes, but not "preparation").  I suspect this policy arose based on experience, logistical considerations, facilities management concerns, compliance with city ordinances or other laws, and so on.  I do not think that policy was created out of a revelatory experience given to the Presiding High Priest.  I also do not particularly care about the origins of this policy.

There are times, however, when a policy addresses some issue of significance, such as the Church's handling of same-sex marriage involving members of the Church, and also regarding children being raised in a same-sex-parent household.  These policies, I think, probably merit some real explanation and clarification from the Brethren.

And . . . that is precisely what we got.  The First Presidency issued a letter about it.  Elder Christofferson gave an in-depth interview about it.  President Nelson explained its origins as being revelatory.

9 hours ago, california boy said:

If they have become the same thing thing then the claims of Mormonism is just like every other thing organized religion. 

They haven't.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, california boy said:

When do you think was the last time a revelation from God for the church was declared as such by the prophet?

When I joined (1975) I appreciated the idea of God speaking through a modern Prophet also, but I also recall a heavy emphasis on delegation (as in Moses as a prophet delegating to other judges) at the time.

Church doctrine and policy can both originate from revelation. Revelation to the President of the Church operates both individually and collectively through his councils. He (and his delegates) declares both doctrine and policy, which do not always have to be new. When the President of the Church cannot act, his counselors and the Twelve pick up the slack. When the he delegates keys to others, they may receive revelation and act within the scope of their delegation. So by virtue of delegation, the President of the Church declares lots of revelations every moment of the day, which renders the Church no less personally directed by the Lord.

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