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Excommunication for apostasy

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Some of our critics think we shouldn’t follow the Lord’s directive to excommunicate members who apostasize ever. I’d like to know why.

is there any time we can excommunicate for apostasy? Like would it be permissible in your eyes if the offender was tarring & feathering the saints?

why should we adopt your view rather than the Lord’s on the matter?

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It's mind numbingly crazy to me to see people like Sam Young who collect all these stories, true or not, but say we need change, 'we have pedophile bishops and stake presidents interview kids' and i'm like you want people like that in leadership callings? if someone is a pedophile or molested someone, as you say, then excommunicating them seems to follow, to me anyways. There's has to be some sort of discipline in place 

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1 hour ago, Avatar4321 said:

Some of our critics think we shouldn’t follow the Lord’s directive to excommunicate members who apostasize ever. I’d like to know why.

is there any time we can excommunicate for apostasy? Like would it be permissible in your eyes if the offender was tarring & feathering the saints?

why should we adopt your view rather than the Lord’s on the matter?

Since you have an a priori assumption that God is telling you to do this what point is there in discussing the matter?

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16 minutes ago, Duncan said:

It's mind numbingly crazy to me to see people like Sam Young who collect all these stories, true or not, but say we need change, 'we have pedophile bishops and stake presidents interview kids' and i'm like you want people like that in leadership callings? if someone is a pedophile or molested someone, as you say, then excommunicating them seems to follow, to me anyways. There's has to be some sort of discipline in place 

Yes, the irony of critics demanding excommunication when they like it (such as those who think Joseph Bishop should lose his membership in the Church), but deploring excommunication when they don't (John Dehlin, Kate Kelly, Sam Young, Bill Reel, etc.) is acute. 

Perhaps it comes down to a difference of opinions about the relative seriousness of apostasy.  It seems like critics and disgruntled members think that members of the Church engaging in apostate behavior is No Big Deal, such that excommunication is wrong.

So . . . special pleading.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, Avatar4321 said:

Some of our critics think we shouldn’t follow the Lord’s directive to excommunicate members who apostasize ever. I’d like to know why.

Good question. Not trying to derail the topic, but I think part of the challenge here is that the definition and/or determination of apostasy seem to be a little subjective at times. That is to say that the LDS definition which is rooted in Brigham Young quotes differs from more generally accepted English definitions.

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10 minutes ago, smac97 said:

The same goes for the alternative a priori assumption that seems to underlie the position of the critics and apostates: that God is not the author of the various scriptural mandates pertaining to discipline/excommunication, that God is not guiding the Church, and so on.

Given that assumption, what point is there in discussing the matter?

Thanks,

-Smac

We could have a good discussion if we agreed on acceptable material for evidence to truth claims. But I doubt we could  The truth of Mormonism, and indeed almost any religion ultimately relates of faith and metaphysical experiences and feelings which are subjective to the individual.

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20 minutes ago, smac97 said:

Yes, the irony of critics demanding excommunication when they like it (such as those who think Joseph Bishop should lose his membership in the Church), but deploring excommunication when they don't (John Dehlin, Kate Kelly, Sam Young, Bill Reel, etc.) is acute. 

Perhaps it comes down to a difference of opinions about the relative seriousness of apostasy.  It seems like critics and disgruntled members think that members of the Church engaging in apostate behavior is No Big Deal, such that excommunication is wrong.

So . . . special pleading.

Thanks,

-Smac

This comparison is actually, quite abhorrent. 

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7 minutes ago, Teancum said:

We could have a good discussion if we agreed on acceptable material for evidence to truth claims. But I doubt we could 

I agree.  Dispositive "evidence" of spiritual things is just too subjective to be reducible to empirical, testable "evidence."

That said, there are plenty of pieces of secondary evidence that are potentially empirically testable, but I still don't think that get us to anything conclusive.

7 minutes ago, Teancum said:

The truth of Mormonism, and indeed almost any religion ultimately relates of faith and metaphysical experiences and feelings which are subjective to the individual.

Ultimately, yes.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 hour ago, smac97 said:

The same goes for the alternative a priori assumption that seems to underlie the position of the critics and apostates: that God is not the author of the various scriptural mandates pertaining to discipline/excommunication, that God is not guiding the Church, and so on.

Given that assumption, what point is there in discussing the matter?

Thanks,

-Smac

I think you have an a priori assumption in your suggested alternative a prior assumption.

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9 minutes ago, Rich Hansen said:

I think you have an a priori assumption in your suggested alternative a prior assumption.

How many prioris are going to be raised before someone calls?

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4 hours ago, Duncan said:

It's mind numbingly crazy to me to see people like Sam Young who collect all these stories, true or not, but say we need change, 'we have pedophile bishops and stake presidents interview kids' and i'm like you want people like that in leadership callings? if someone is a pedophile or molested someone, as you say, then excommunicating them seems to follow, to me anyways. There's has to be some sort of discipline in place 

Is there a reason why the Roman Catholic Church does not excommunicate priests for rape of children?  Instead they merely move them to a new parish.

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54 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Is there a reason why the Roman Catholic Church does not excommunicate priests for rape of children?  Instead they merely move them to a new parish.

You'd have to ask a Catholic!

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4 hours ago, thatjimguy said:

How long have you been saving that 40k reference to use in this forum? LOL!

It just came up in an image search and seemed to fit.

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6 hours ago, Avatar4321 said:

Some of our critics think we shouldn’t follow the Lord’s directive to excommunicate members who apostasize ever. I’d like to know why.

 

The Church in may ways simply reflects eternal things.  The greatest "excommunication" of apostasy all time is when God cast out Satan and those who followed him.  God does not deal with rebellion very well.  The fact that the Church does this is a lesson to us that nothing has changed.  If we think we can rebel against the Church and somehow God will overlook it or just laugh it off at judgement then we better think twice about that.  If excommunication helps a person see that they need to change and repent, then its a good thing. Better to learn this idea that rebellion will not be tolerated by the Lord now than find out too late when we are judged and there is no more time to repent. 

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4 hours ago, The Nehor said:

We should make it worse:

b16af0e42a8fa9b6ef8cc0e0390b5e08.jpg

How long have you been saving that 40k reference to use in this forum? LOL!

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2 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I posted this on the Gina thread. But thought it should be here as well, people besides those on this board are finding it troubling as well. https://kutv.com/news/local/survey-commitment-of-of-lds-church-members-chilled-by-high-profile-excommunications

I hate to say it but this seems like a problematic question since "troubled" is rather ambiguous. I'm troubled by it, but not because I think the Church is doing something wrong but because I'm troubled by people acting like this. I wish they'd asked the question in a more careful way.

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8 hours ago, carbon dioxide said:

The Church in may ways simply reflects eternal things.  The greatest "excommunication" of apostasy all time is when God cast out Satan and those who followed him.  God does not deal with rebellion very well.  The fact that the Church does this is a lesson to us that nothing has changed.  If we think we can rebel against the Church and somehow God will overlook it or just laugh it off at judgement then we better think twice about that.  If excommunication helps a person see that they need to change and repent, then its a good thing. Better to learn this idea that rebellion will not be tolerated by the Lord now than find out too late when we are judged and there is no more time to repent. 

I’m impressed by your insight into Satan’s excommunication. Good insight!  I’d never made that connection before.

But, I struggle with your characterization of apostasy as rebelling against the church. While not necessarily mutually exclusive, I think a better measure would be rebellion against God. 

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11 hours ago, thatjimguy said:

How long have you been saving that 40k reference to use in this forum? LOL!

Ran image search about excommunication and thought it fit.

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IMO there is a significant difference between being an apostate of Jesus and being an apostate of the church.

As I've stated numerous times before, I don't necessarily have a problem with the institutional church maintaining its institutional boundaries however it chooses; even if I don't agree with the way it chooses. Like others have said, defining "apostasy" is often quite subjective. At what point does it become severe enough that discipline is necessary? That judgement will vary from Bishop to Bishop and SP to SP. I have a much bigger problem with the church claiming to not only remove a person from institutional membership, but also rescinding saving ordinances. IOW- If a person accepts Jesus and is baptized and maintains the belief and commitment to following Jesus, I wouldn't consider that person an apostate of Christ simply because he disagrees with church leadership and the policies they enact. IMO it would be inappropriate to cancel that person's baptism. That person may apostatize from sustaining the men who lead the church, while still maintaining allegiance to Jesus. IMO it would be wrong to excommunicate this person because he exhibits a lack of faith in men, while maintaining faith in Christ. As I've already stated, the judgement of apostasy is subjective and it matters to me whether or not the person has apostatized from Jesus or the institutional church. I know many here won't see that as an important distinction, but it is to me.

Remove a person from church membership but don't claim to remove that person's salvific ordinance. Keep temporal judgements to the temporal world. Don't claim eternal ramifications and enforce eternal consequences in the here and now. Leave that judgement for God. Similarly, that's my main problem with the 2nd anointing as well. It's fallible men making eternal judgements in the here and now when it's totally unnecessary. Leave eternal judgements to God.

I would prefer that the church allow sinners to remain in the church if they choose. We are all sinners. Going after people who speak out against the church makes the church look weak, like they're afraid of disagreement and challenge from its members. Excommunicating someone like Bill Reel or Gina Colvin make the church look like a Goliath hammering down on a David who has no way of defending himself.

If a person is consistently and willfully disruptive to meetings, or if that person presents a physical risk to the congregation, then I have no problem limiting that person's access to the people, but leave eternal judgements to God. I don't believe people need to be protected from differing ideas/opinions. In fact, for a person to truly develop and maintain a meaningful faith they must have the ability to choose. But limiting the judgements of men and preserving the eternal judgements of God will require greater humility.

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On 11/30/2018 at 9:03 PM, carbon dioxide said:

The Church in may ways simply reflects eternal things.  The greatest "excommunication" of apostasy all time is when God cast out Satan and those who followed him.  God does not deal with rebellion very well.  The fact that the Church does this is a lesson to us that nothing has changed.  If we think we can rebel against the Church and somehow God will overlook it or just laugh it off at judgement then we better think twice about that.  If excommunication helps a person see that they need to change and repent, then its a good thing. Better to learn this idea that rebellion will not be tolerated by the Lord now than find out too late when we are judged and there is no more time to repent. 

Not to derail this discussion here about the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, but carbon dioxide comment is exactly where my mind went while reading through. Excommunication represents eternal truth. Even the math is eternal... My old Bishop said that about a tenth return. If you read through the Isaiah prophecies and much of the prophets' writings after isaiah, the Lord spends a great deal of time discussing His expulsion of Israel and their return. A remnant shall return is a tithe. 

What is the blasphemy of the Holy Ghost but having the heavens opened and then defying God in open rebellion? Excommunication for apostasy certainly typifies this. I have never been in a council to excommunicate someone for apostasy but I imagine there is a similar process whereby the Lord calls us to repentance time and time again before expulsion from His protection. I imagine those who defiantly stick to their apostasy are the ones who are excommunicated. 

Of course we have to account for fallible man's execution of heavenly principle. 

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