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Everything posted by Freedom

  1. There is an issue of definitions. We cannot apply traditional definitions of scripture and revelation of other religions. We do not believe sculpture to be inerrant and we do not believe our prophets to be infallible General conference talks are assigned but no topics are given and no talks are reviewed before being presented. I cannot think of a past sermon that does not have value today. True the examples used to expound the principle being taught may be flawed or outdated, but they are still true principles The purpose of general conference is not to produce doctrine or canon, but to produce scripture, which is inspired teachings. Sacrament talks are just as much scripture as are general conference talks. Our doctrine is found in our cannon, and in official proclamations.
  2. I am not sure what you mean by reliable. It is not like there are a lot of evil doers spending hundreds of hours producing unreliable commentaries. I don't think you would go wrong with anything published withing the past 30 years. Deseret Books has a long list of books for sale. If they are looking for history, a commentary may not be the place to go as it would only provide enough context for a particular revelation but brevity invariably leads to a distortion of the facts since history is complicated. A book like Rough Stone Rolling would be a great starting point.
  3. My feeling it that it is more accurate to link these verses to the previous previous verses which refer to the daughters of zion. I do not believe these verses have anything to do with polygamy, that is forcing a 19th century practice onto an ancient text. the passage is speaking about the iniquity of the covenant people and their eventual destruction an exile into Assyria. The allegory in chapter 5 ties it together.
  4. or perhaps the verses referenced in Isaiah already occurred. 7 is certainly a symbolic number but would have to provide some evidence other than a personal impression to link this verse to churches.
  5. This is the key isn't it. God is a term as any others with no absolute definition. We are all gods, as Jesus taught. We are all gods just as all children are humans. I am a master of my domain, not the master of the universe. We become as God, we are on a journey that began eons ago; progression is eternal in that it is a godlike progression. We will continue to learn and grow if we live true to the precepts upon which the blessings of exultation are predicated.
  6. In a class setting, unless the opinion is in clear contradiction of doctrine, one should never say 'I disagree' or 'you are wrong'. Rather, one should say 'I have a different perspective'. Laypeople disputing the interpretation of scripture is always pointless because none of them are correct. They simply lack the education or training to understand how to interpret anything. It is the man with $100/year in income calling the man with $10/year poor.
  7. Well, my biggest concern for tomorrow is finding a report to send to an insurance adjustor that I misfiled and misnamed. I received my fourth reminder today which I ignored like I did the previous three. I don't even remember who created it so I can't to back and ask them to resend. Oh and I received my monthly email stat report which is SO interesting to review.
  8. Ted was a visiting general authority when I was a missionary in the late 80s. We as a mission had a very troubling encounter with another general authority who was Teds senior and was also also the area president, Ted a councilor. The more senior GA was at a regional conference and he looked out in the audience and called out two sister missionaries and asked where their investigators were. They advised that they did not have investigators with them. He ordered them out of the meeting and ordered them not to return until they had investigators. They were humiliated and left in tears. Me and my companion took of our badged and moved apart. We reported this encounter with the blessing of our mission president to Ted. Ted listened intently with a knowing smirk on his face and carried on with his training. A month later the other general authority returned to our mission and gave a forced apology for his actions. A sweet victory. Years later I met him again and I called him Elder Brewerton. He said, please, we are among friends, call me Ted.
  9. This sort of question makes me beg the question, why should we expect there to be any evidence? He visited a small group and there was a brief 200 year history of peace and then it all fall apart. All those who adhered to this religion were destroyed along with their culture and their written record. I wonder if any connections we make are more likely coincidences or wishful thinking. One of my German family lines lived in an isolated community in Ireland for 200 years, coming to Canada in the early 1800s. There is no evidence they were ever there other than a graveyard. Their religious practices, language and traditions are long forgotten. The only reason we know they were there is due to modern civilizations propensity to the written record. In fact, they abandoned their religion and language within one generation of living on this continent.
  10. That provides a starting point. thanks for sharing. Regarding Adam and Eve, if you are questioning the existence of an Adam and Eve based on your standards, you may be judging them from a flawed premise. For example, you would not reject that Joseph Smith is considered a prophet based on those same standards. As the renown Jewish agnostic scholar Christine Hayes explains "many of our cherished presuppositions about the Bible are based on astonishing clams that others have made on behalf of the Bible, claims that the bible has not made on behalf of itself"
  11. Have you considered that your concerns are based on a flawed premise? I do not believe that there was no death before the fall, in a universal floor or a tower of babel where languages magically emerged. The scriptures do not speak to these misconceptions. There is overwhelming evidence of a culture in central America that matches what is found in the Book of Mormon, and the text of the Book of Mormon cannot be explained away as a fictional account created by Joseph Smith. There is too much in the details to be dismissed. You put a lot of effort into putting weight onto criticisms that have long been disputed and found lacking. For example you say you do not believe in an Adam and Eve that lives in what is now the eastern united States - this is an example of an argument from silence. You have no evidence that this cannot be, you just feel that there is no proof that they were there and therefore you do not believe. This is fine, you are welcome to question and to not accept doctrines, but there is a difference between deciding not to believe something and having evidence that supports your decision not to believe. I have no evidence that the ancient greek gods do not exist but I still do not accept that they do exist. Poking at the peripherals do not lead to truth. Start with some foundation truths: Do you believe there is a God? Do you believe there is a Savior? Do you believe that God speaks to prophets?
  12. Although it may be true that chiasmus exist in other works, this style is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of Hebraisms.
  13. What is more likely, that you are creating an argument without evidence in an attempt to discredit a book that you pick at along the edges without being able to challenge the major components or that you have actual evidence to support your argument. It would seem the former. Despite decades of effort, the critics have yet to find a kink in its armor. On the contrary, the more research that unfolds, the more define the book appears to be.
  14. and yet not a singe person who witnessed the translation ever mentioned this. When exactly did he have time to do this research? Have you been able debunk the many bullseyes that Joseph would not have known about? Can you explain how he knew so much about central american culture? It seems you are grasping at straws with this post. If someone with superpowers shows up in the news, would that prove to debunk the theory that the X-men comics are fictional? It is a silly basis of an argument
  15. As has been said, there are contradictions among the gospels making it very difficult to harmonize them, and many of the orders are a matter of personal choice. i created a harmony where I made four columns and put the verses together as closely as i could word for word and it quickly became impossible to make such a chart. The stories are not so much historical events as they are stories that teach gospel principles, each telling a different aspect of the story with the aim of teaching a principle. The facts of who said what when is not what matters. Whether or not there was a Moses or a Noah misses the point. it is not which version is correct but rather what do each of the versions mean to me. As for the question of harmonies, the one created by the church was for convenience sake to give an example of how to correlate them but the purpose of gospel study is to create our own. The many harmonies provide a jumping off point for the novice; the sad reality is most remain as novices and do not take the time to become a genuine gospel scholar. I do not suggest that we should be phd's but rather that we must be become true students determined to study with all our heart might mind and strength. The same applies to any area. We need to become experts in our occupations, experts in church administration, experts in all areas of life that we are involved in. Rather than reading the far right Blaze on the one hand or the far left Palmer Report on the other, we need to read and be open minded to both sides from reliable sources. In another example, I read An ancient American Perspective on the Book of Mormon and as soon as I could I created my own geography based on the wording in the text. It became very apparent where Sorenson was following the text and where he was using conjecture; but I found out for my self how the book teaches the geography rather than relying on someone else's opinion.
  16. My wife agrees with you. she is all like ' they don't have 8 year old boys at the priesthood session!"
  17. You would have to provide some scriptural and anthropological support for this claim. What exactly is 'southern scripture'? Is there a set criteria?
  18. I know many members who wear a cross and it has never been a matter of discussion. It is not common because it is not part of our religious culture. Since there is nothing in our doctrine against displaying a cross, there is no reason why a Bishop would need to have any concern.
  19. hey, you remember me! yes, it has been a while. It is like coming back to old friends.
  20. the absence of the image should not be conflated to equal the absence of the central importance of the crucifixion. If someone leaped in front of a train to save my life, me having a picture on my mantle of that person as a healthy and happy living mortal rather than a picture of a train would not imply that i do not deeply respect that persons sacrifice. In fact, the picture of the train would be perceived as rather macabre. The atonement is central to our doctrine, the image of a cross which represents one aspect of the atonement is not. We glory in his conquering death, not dying. Nevertheless, your use of the cross is a beautiful way to remember the Saviors sacrifice.
  21. The church leadership make great efforts to prevent us from embracing a particular symbol which may be one of the reasons why we do not use the traditional cross. our chapels are devoid of art or any images an our temples lack a specific overarching symbol. We rejoice in the crucifixion, but this was not the end any more than his entry into Jerusalem was the end. The atonement culminated in his resurrection, not his death. The cross did not become the symbol of Christianity until the 4th century so clearly it had no part of worship in the early church. But it is a beautiful symbol; just one of many.
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