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Thoughts on D&C 1


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2 hours ago, rongo said:

I arrived in the Germany Hamburg Mission October 27, 1994. Very soon after that, we had a mission conference with Elder Wirthlin in the Wartenau building. He told us that John the Revelator was instrumental and played a key role in the fall of the Berlin Wall and in the opening up of Eastern Europe for missionary work. It wasn't a Q&A setting, and I didn't have an opportunity to ask him about it afterwards, but man, did I want more details about that! I think their hand (translated beings) in a lot of things will be made manifest when we have all the details. 

Not the sort of statement an apostle is likely to make in our era, any more. :(  I know that @Duncan also heard something similar from an apostle at roughly the same time (mid to late 90s).

I don't doubt that the translated John the Revelator was involved in preparing the way for the gathering of Israel in Eastern Europe. After all he received a last days mission and ordinance to gather Israel.

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1 hour ago, Nevo said:

The prophet is invoking YHWH's arm, which symbolizes his power. The deeds ascribed to YHWH's arm in these verses are deeds that the Lord himself performed in the past—subduing chaos at the creation and delivering the Israelites from Egypt. The Lord's reply in 51:12–19 makes it clear that verses 9–10 are addressed to him.

The Lord (Jehovah) did not perform these miracles himself. The angel of his presence did.

7 ¶ I will mention the lovingkindnesses of the Lord, and the praises of the Lord, according to all that the Lord hath bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which he hath bestowed on them according to his mercies, and according to the multitude of his lovingkindnesses.
8 For he said, Surely they are my people, children that will not lie: so he was their Saviour.
9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.

(Isaiah 63. See also D&C 133:53)

I believe that the angel of the Lord's presence is the last days servant or "arm of the Lord" who is being told to awake and arise. 

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1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

Moses and Aaron were his arm in your reference.  

I believe the Lord's arm was the angel of his presence who appeared to Moses in the burning bush.

1 Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb.
 2 And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed.

(Exodus 3)

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In regards to the "arm of the Lord" being last days servant. Here are a two more scriptures and a statement by Joseph Smith: 

10 Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.
 11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.

(Isaiah 40)

22 Therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more be a prey; and I will judge between cattle and cattle.
23 And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd.
24 And I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it.

(Ezekiel 34)

The "arm of the Lord" from Isaiah 40, who will rule over the Lord's people and be their shepherd, is the same "Servant David" from Ezekiel 34, who will be be the one shepherd set over the Lord's people who will feed them and be a prince among them.

There's also this quote by Joseph Smith:

Although David was a king, he never did obtain the spirit and power of Elijah and the fullness of the Priesthood; and the Priesthood that he received, and the throne and kingdom of David is to be taken from him and given to another by the name of David in the last days, raised up out of his lineage.

TPJS, p.339
 

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10 minutes ago, LDS Watchman said:

In regards to the "arm of the Lord" being last days servant. Here are a two more scriptures and a statement by Joseph Smith: 

10 Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.
 11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.

(Isaiah 40)

22 Therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more be a prey; and I will judge between cattle and cattle.
23 And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd.
24 And I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it.

(Ezekiel 34)

The "arm of the Lord" from Isaiah 40, who will rule over the Lord's people and be their shepherd, is the same "Servant David" from Ezekiel 34, who will be be the one shepherd set over the Lord's people who will feed them and be a prince among them.

There's also this quote by Joseph Smith:

Although David was a king, he never did obtain the spirit and power of Elijah and the fullness of the Priesthood; and the Priesthood that he received, and the throne and kingdom of David is to be taken from him and given to another by the name of David in the last days, raised up out of his lineage.

TPJS, p.339
 

You are combining two separate things from separate prophecies (and attempted to add the One Mighty and Strong from a third).

The Arm is not a person, it's God's body of men holding the fullness of priesthood.

The One Mighty and Strong is the eventually resurrected Joseph Smith.

The Davidic servant is another individual (that I'll admit it's been a while since I read up on.)

You cannot combine these into one future prophet to put the Church right.  It sounds like the Jews looking for a Messiah while crucifying the Savior.  And it opens the door for sagebrush prophets claiming a new dispensation.  Not a good approach.

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24 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

You are combining two separate things from separate prophecies (and attempted to add the One Mighty and Strong from a third).

It is possible that the One Mighty and Strong and the Davidic Servant are not one and the same, but based on my research I believe that they are the same person.

24 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

The Arm is not a person, it's God's body of men holding the fullness of priesthood.

This is merely your opinion.

It says that the Lord's arm will rule for him. Is this body of men holding the fulness of the priesthood going to collectively rule for him?

If so what is the role of this "David" who will be king/prince over Israel in the last days?

24 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

The One Mighty and Strong is the eventually resurrected Joseph Smith.

This is definitely a strong possibility. There's a good deal of evidence for this, but it's not a certainty. 

24 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

You cannot combine these into one future prophet to put the Church right.  It sounds like the Jews looking for a Messiah while crucifying the Savior.  And it opens the door for sagebrush prophets claiming a new dispensation.  Not a good approach.

Looking for the last days prophecies of the Lord to be fulfilled in regards to the Davidic Servant is not opening the door for being deceived by "sagebrush prophets" anymore than looking for the second coming of the Lord is opening the door for being deceived by false Christs.

Sure we don't know how it will all play out and need to be wary of imposters, but we do know that a last days prophet is coming to prepare the way for the Lord's return. This is all over the scriptures. 

The Lord said that we should be seeking the Davidic Servant/King.

4 For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim:
5 Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the Lord their God, and David their king; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.

(Hosea 3)

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1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

If your Davidic servant were to appear today he would need authority from Pres. Nelson or we would know him to be false.

I don't appreciate your condescending accusatory tone. 

The Davidic Servant prophesied in the scriptures is not "my Davidic Servant."

I'm not advocating for any self-proclaimed prophet. I'm pointing to the prophecies in the scriptures. And these prophecies will be fulfilled, whether you like it or not.

It appears that these prophecies make you uncomfortable, which is why you feel the need to talk down to me and accuse me of having a nefarious agenda, instead of actually addressing what the prophecies in the scriptures say.

As for your claim that the Davidic Servant must receive his authority from a current president of the church, that's nonsense. If Joseph Smith were to return tomorrow to finish his mission, he wouldn't need any authority from President Nelson. Neither would John the Revelator. For that matter neither would an outsider John the Baptist type either. 

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6 hours ago, LDS Watchman said:

It seems that you believe these verses are a condemnation upon a minority group of fault finders in the church, rather than the typical member who believes all is well with the current state of affairs in the church. 

I would suggest that the scriptures speak of a righteous minority of the church who will remain true to the everlasting covenant, while the majority will be cut off for straying from the ordinances and breaking the everlasting covenant. 

It has always been this way. The majority wander onto forbidden paths, while a minority stays on the straight and narrow path.

I'm not speaking to a majority or a minority in either direction.  From my perspective, it's impossible for us to really judge each other, so apart from full scale apostasy I don't think we really could figure out the numbers on either side of the isle.  Not very well anyway. 

It's human nature to always see ourselves as the good guys in any story so most believing members will believe that they are in the right and those who disagree with them are the ones verse 15 is talking about.  So, we end up deciding which group is the correct group based on which group we belong to.  That's no different than setting ourselves up as the standard, like the verses warn against.

So I don't think it's at all important to figure out where the minority is going to be and where the majority will end up.  That comes too close to hubris for my taste because inevitably we will put ourselves into the 'better' group and create us vs. them dichotomies with us as the good guys.  Instead of worrying about which group everyone around us is in so we can play the minority/majority numbers game, I think it makes much more sense to focus on where we are and only on where we are.   

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It strikes me that a lot of the interpretations offered in this thread (e.g., “‘the arm of the Lord’ referred to in verse x is a specific referral to item/event/person y”) is overly legalistic/literalistic.

Much of D&C 1 echoes themes that came up in the First Vision or the Book of Mormon, which in turn were revealed in such a way as to evoke Biblical passages that are better approaches as Hebraic poetic/literary forms intended to convey a general impression.

In the D&C, as elsewhere in scripture, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. 

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1 hour ago, LDS Watchman said:

As for your claim that the Davidic Servant must receive his authority from a current president of the church, that's nonsense. If Joseph Smith were to return tomorrow to finish his mission, he wouldn't need any authority from President Nelson. Neither would John the Revelator. For that matter neither would an outsider John the Baptist type either. 

If he is born on earth in our day and named David then he would need to receive ordinances and authority from the man holding the keys on the earth.

If he was a returning resurrected being like Joseph Smith or John the Revelator he would already have them.

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2 hours ago, bluebell said:

It's human nature to always see ourselves as the good guys in any story so most believing members will believe that they are in the right and those who disagree with them are the ones verse 15 is talking about.  So, we end up deciding which group is the correct group based on which group we belong to.

Bingo.

This is exactly what we do. And by we I mean not only active members of the church, but everyone who considers themselves to be a "Mormon" (LDS, Fundamentalists, RLDS Snufferites, etc).

Which is why I kept my breakdown vanilla and didn't accuse any specific group of being the ones referred to. I simply said that I believe members of the church are being referred to. But my personal belief, based on my studies of the scriptures and my observations of the current state of the church, is that unfortunately the majority of the members are being referred to.

2 hours ago, bluebell said:

I think it makes much more sense to focus on where we are and only on where we are.   

Of course our primary focus should be about "where we are." We have to be able to be honest with ourselves, instead of assuming that we and those who are in the same camp as us are the "good guys" (to use your term). 

In my opinion we can't really know where we are if we don't have some understanding of where those in the other camps are, though. 

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1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

If he is born on earth in our day and named David then he would need to receive ordinances and authority from the man holding the keys on the earth.

Not necessarily. The Jewish leaders in the meridian of time legitimately held the authority and keys, yet according to Joseph Smith, John the Baptist wrested those keys from them, without having first received his authority from them. 

Something similar could happen in the last days.

I know many deluded false prophets have claimed to have done this; the most recent being Denver Snuffer, but this doesn't mean that a legitimate prophet couldn't do it. 

1 hour ago, JLHPROF said:

If he was a returning resurrected being like Joseph Smith or John the Revelator he would already have them.

Exactly. It's very likely that both of these mighty servants of God will play a major role in the winding up scene and the setting in order of the Lord's house, and neither will first receive authority from the current president of the church. 

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1 hour ago, mgy401 said:

In the D&C, as elsewhere in scripture, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. 

Yes in the scriptures sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

But when we look at prophecies of the last days, things are anything but plain, because they are couched in metaphorical language. We see this in these 4 verses in the section 1. "Arm of the Lord" is a metaphor for someone or something, just like "Babylon" is a metaphor for something. 

In section one the Lord commands us to search the revelations in the D&C. He commands us to search the scriptures in general on multiple occasions in the scriptures. By searching the scriptures and seeking the inspiration of the Holy Ghost we can connect the dots and gain an understanding of the meaning of these metaphors. 

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13 hours ago, LDS Watchman said:

Yes the covenants were given to ancient Isreal and in New Testament times. Those covenants were broken. To the 1831 Saints this was no doubt a reference to the great apostasy. It is to us as well. The Savior's statement to Joseph Smith at the time of the first vision is also referring to this. 

However, this doesn't mean that members of the church today have not also strayed from the ordinances and broken the everlasting covenant. We ought to do as Nephi did and liken all scriptures unto us to see how they apply to us today, instead of attributing all negative scriptures to some other people long ago and giving ourselves a pat on the back for being so much more righteous than the Lord's ancient covenant people.

There is no question that some members of the church today have broken their covenants. That is obviously the case.   And if the only thing you are trying to say is that verses 13 to 16 could apply to some members of the church at that time or now or in the future, then I might agree.  But it is impossible for the language of verses 13 to 16 to be referring to the church collectively, or to the leadership of the church as a whole, because the verses that follow provide the solution to the problems described in verses 13-16, and this is apparent from the transitional word “wherefore” at the beginning of verse 17.  “Wherefore” in this time and context is understood to mean “For which reason”:

Quote

17 Wherefore [for the reason stated in the preceding verses], I the Lord, knowing the calamity which should come upon the inhabitants of the earth, called upon my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and spake unto him from heaven, and gave him commandments;
18 And also gave commandments to others, that they should proclaim these things unto the world; and all this that it might be fulfilled, which was written by the prophets—
19 The weak things of the world shall come forth and break down the mighty and strong ones, that man should not counsel his fellow man, neither trust in the arm of flesh
20 But that every man might speak in the name of God the Lord, even the Savior of the world;
21 That faith also might increase in the earth;
22 That mine everlasting covenant might be established;
23 That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world, and before kings and rulers.
(Doctrine and Covenants 1:17–23)

In other words, the Lord’s solution to the straying from the ordinances and breaking the covenants problem of the past is to reestablish his church and call a prophet and “others” to lead it.  The “commandments” and “covenants” of course are contained in the book for which this revelation is the preface.  

Now, according to the verses above, the Lord set an order in his church and put his authority in the mouth of his servants so that the “mighty and strong” one is broken down, and also that “man should not counsel his fellow man”.  This is informing us that the Lord’s correction will come from his own mouth to his authorized leaders in the church, and not from some guy in the pew who is making "observations of the current state of the church" and passing judgment upon it.   Wouldn’t you agree?

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7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

There is no question that some members of the church today have broken their covenants. 

It's not just some members who have broken their covenants. Roughly 70% of the church membership is completely inactive. Of those who are active or semi active, there are varying degrees of personal righteous and commitment. It's really a pretty small minority of the church membership who are truly committed and faithful to their covenants. 

7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

But it is impossible for the language of verses 13 to 16 to be referring to the church collectively, or to the leadership of the church as a whole

First of all, I never said that these verses referred to the "church collectively" or the "leadership of the church as a whole."

I said that I believe that these verses are directed at members of the church. You then insisted that this was impossible and that the world was being addressed instead.

As for whether or not these verses refer to the church collectively and the leadership of the church as a whole, this is not impossible, either. If you read the prophecies about the last days in the scriptures, the state of the house of Israel just prior to the Lord's return is not good, though there are some who are righteous and faithful. 

Obviously I've expressed some concerns about the current state of the church, which is why you and others are up in arms, but I'm certainly not suggesting that the church is wicked while I am righteous. It's not my place to pronounce judgment upon the church collectively, but I am justified in searching the scriptures and likening them to us, which is all I'm doing.

7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

In other words, the Lord’s solution to the straying from the ordinances and breaking the covenants problem of the past is to reestablish his church and call a prophet and “others” to lead it.  The “commandments” and “covenants” of course are contained in the book for which this revelation is the preface.

This is an excellent point and you are completely correct here. The Lord saw the calamity that was coming upon the earth because the people had strayed from his ordinances and broken the everlasting covenant, so he restored the fulness of the gospel and restablished the everlasting covenant through Joseph Smith. 

This however does not automatically mean that 200 years later all is well in the church collectively. As I pointed out earlier, in 1832 the Lord said the whole church was under condemnation. There are also multiple warnings in the D&C that the church could collectively lose the light they had been given if they didn't remain faithful. I know this idea goes against the popular belief in the church today that it is impossible for us to stumble, but it is nevertheless true. I'm happy to provide the references if you would like.

7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

Now, according to the verses above, the Lord set an order in his church and put his authority in the mouth of his servants so that the “mighty and strong” one is broken down, and also that “man should not counsel his fellow man”. 

You obviously don't know what the Lord is saying here. The Lord had called the weak things of this earth, like the unlearned farm boy Joseph Smith, to confound the mighty and strong ONES (plural), meaning the wisdom of the world. The reference to the the weak things of the earth does not negate the prophecy the Lord gave of the One Mighty and Strong in D&C 85 or the many other prophecies of the coming of a last days servant in the near future.

The Lord's statement that man should not counsel his fellow man nor trust in the arm of flesh is referring to the religious leaders in Joseph Smith's day who had no authority. The Lord contrasts this with "speaking in the name of the Lord," or speaking with his authority and the power of the Holy Ghost rather than by the wisdom of man. 

This authority and power was restored and in their weakness Joseph Smith and others laid the foundation for the Lord's church and began to bring it forth out of darkness. The church has grown and expanded since then. Much good has been accomplished by the church. But this doesn't mean that over time we couldn't possibly have stumbled. 

7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

This is informing us that the Lord’s correction will come from his own mouth to his authorized leaders in the church

The Lord's correction will come via his last days servant (and those who are called to labor with him) who will of course be authorized by him. Whether this servant will come from within or without the church leadership remains to be seen.

7 hours ago, InCognitus said:

not from some guy in the pew who is making "observations of the current state of the church" and passing judgment upon it.  

I don't appreciate your petty insult in which you suggest that I claim to be the one to correct the church and pass judgment upon it. Very lame and immature. 

I have made no such claim. All I have done is share some scriptures and observations. I have made no claim to having any authority to correct anything or pronounce judgment on anyone. 

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8 hours ago, InCognitus said:

There is no question that some members of the church today have broken their covenants. That is obviously the case.   And if the only thing you are trying to say is that verses 13 to 16 could apply to some members of the church at that time or now or in the future, then I might agree.  But it is impossible for the language of verses 13 to 16 to be referring to the church collectively, or to the leadership of the church as a whole, because the verses that follow provide the solution to the problems described in verses 13-16, and this is apparent from the transitional word “wherefore” at the beginning of verse 17.  “Wherefore” in this time and context is understood to mean “For which reason”:

In other words, the Lord’s solution to the straying from the ordinances and breaking the covenants problem of the past is to reestablish his church and call a prophet and “others” to lead it.  The “commandments” and “covenants” of course are contained in the book for which this revelation is the preface.  

Now, according to the verses above, the Lord set an order in his church and put his authority in the mouth of his servants so that the “mighty and strong” one is broken down, and also that “man should not counsel his fellow man”.  This is informing us that the Lord’s correction will come from his own mouth to his authorized leaders in the church, and not from some guy in the pew who is making "observations of the current state of the church" and passing judgment upon it.   Wouldn’t you agree?

Let me start by saying I have no dog in this fight but tend to come down on your side of the argument. The only problem is that the Lord appears to be speaking of a day in futurity when he says:

14 And the arm of the Lord shall be revealed; and the day cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord, neither the voice of his servants, neither give heed to the words of the prophets and apostles, shall be cut off from among the people;

It definitely appears verse 14 is speaking of a future day when certain individuals, who will not listen to nor obey the Lord’s authorized prophets and apostles, will be severed from communion with the Lord’s people. Pretty straight forward.

But here’s the rub:

15 For they have strayed from mine ordinances, and have broken mine everlasting covenant;

It’s quite apparent that the “they” in verse 15 are the very same individuals who will be cut off from among the people at some point in the future spoken of in verse 14, and the reason why they are going to be cut off is because they are not going to listen to nor heed the Lord’s prophets and apostles. Further, it appears that as a consequence of being unwilling to give heed to the apostles and prophets they going to stray from the ordinances and break their covenants. The reason why it’s easy to make this logical deduction is because verse 15 begins with the word for, which is is shortened way of saying “it is for this reason.”

But the thing that can easily throw you is that while verse 14 is obviously speaking of a future event, verse 15 suddenly seems to be speaking of something happening in the present tense, and this even though verse 15 obviously completes the thought of something particular happening in futurity in verse 14.

But one doesn’t necessarily have to be thrown off course because verse 15 suddenly begins speaking in the present tense, because there are many prophetic passages in the scriptures that employ the same literary device, I.e. speaking of events that are yet future in the present tense. It’s called Prolepsis...

Prolepsis occurs at various points in scripture as well. According to Kenneth Gentry: “A common literary device is prolepsis. Prolepsis is the anachronistic representing of something as existing before its proper or historical time...The scripture is filled with examples of prolepsis...” (Three Ring Binder)

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10 hours ago, LDS Watchman said:

In my opinion we can't really know where we are if we don't have some understanding of where those in the other camps are, though. 

I don’t think that we have to compare ourselves to others before we can know where we stand before God. 

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13 hours ago, LDS Watchman said:

Yes in the scriptures sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

But when we look at prophecies of the last days, things are anything but plain, because they are couched in metaphorical language. We see this in these 4 verses in the section 1. "Arm of the Lord" is a metaphor for someone or something, just like "Babylon" is a metaphor for something. 

In section one the Lord commands us to search the revelations in the D&C. He commands us to search the scriptures in general on multiple occasions in the scriptures. By searching the scriptures and seeking the inspiration of the Holy Ghost we can connect the dots and gain an understanding of the meaning of these metaphors. 

All very fair; but the beginning of the inquiry should be the historical context; rather than starting out with the dogmas of Snuffer or Woolley or LeBaron and then retconning scripture to bolster those conclusions.

For example, the business about “one mighty and strong” as set out in D&C 85 was written in a very particular context in response to a very specific set of circumstances, which we can read about thanks to the “Joseph Smith’s Revelations” (drawing on the JSPP) book in the LDS Library app; and in context it has very little to do with the fundamentalist/Snufferite fetish about a coming day wherein the “proud descendants of Nauvoo” will get their due comeuppance.  

Careful students of the scriptures will understand the difference between the inspired connecting of dots, versus what is (at best) essentially a case of theological Tourette’s Syndrome or (at worst) precisely the sort of “wresting” that the scriptures themselves warn against. 

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I visited my mother in law Saturday, and she asked for help getting the D&C on her tablet, she already had the LDS scripture app but struggled with how to work with it. As I read D&C section 1 that this thread is about, I worry about her reading these. She already asks about my inactive children, and wondering if they're going to church. These scriptures only make it worse, and she worries all the time. :(

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9 hours ago, bluebell said:

I don’t think that we have to compare ourselves to others before we can know where we stand before God. 

I never said we needed to compare ourselves to others before we can know where we stand before God.

You spoke of different camps and how each one think they are the good guys. It is important to see things clearly and to know which path is the correct one rather than assuming that the path one is on is the correct one. 

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8 hours ago, mgy401 said:

the beginning of the inquiry should be the historical context; rather than starting out with the dogmas of Snuffer or Woolley or LeBaron and then retconning scripture to bolster those conclusions.

Who said anything about the the dogmas of Snuffer, Woolley, or LeBaron. Bringing these men up is a distraction from the issue at hand, which is what the word of God in the scriptures actually says. 

Speaking of retconning scripture to bolster preconceived conclusions, we need look no farther than what members of the church do all the time. We tend to look at every positive scripture about the last days and apply it to ourselves, because after all we are so righteous and cannot possibly go astray, right? Meanwhile we ignore or twist any and all scripture which suggests otherwise. 

9 hours ago, mgy401 said:

the business about “one mighty and strong” as set out in D&C 85 was written in a very particular context in response to a very specific set of circumstances

This is a prophecy about the last days, which has not been fulfilled yet. The Lord promised us in D&C 1 that every prophecy in the D&C will be fulfilled. 

9 hours ago, mgy401 said:

it has very little to do with the fundamentalist/Snufferite fetish about a coming day wherein the “proud descendants of Nauvoo” will get their due comeuppance.

Who said anything about the "proud descendants of Nauvoo" getting their due comeuppance? I certainly have suggested nothing of the sort. Why are you bringing up the ideas of the deluded false prophet Denver Snuffer?

9 hours ago, mgy401 said:

Careful students of the scriptures will understand the difference between the inspired connecting of dots, versus what is (at best) essentially a case of theological Tourette’s Syndrome or (at worst) precisely the sort of “wresting” that the scriptures themselves warn against. 

What scriptures am I wresting? The scriptures say what they say.

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51 minutes ago, LDS Watchman said:

I never said we needed to compare ourselves to others before we can know where we stand before God.

You spoke of different camps and how each one think they are the good guys. It is important to see things clearly and to know which path is the correct one rather than assuming that the path one is on is the correct one. 

I agree.  My point was that we can do that (know which path God wants us on) without having to have "some understanding of where those in the other camps are."

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2 hours ago, bluebell said:

My point was that we can do that (know which path God wants us on) without having to have "some understanding of where those in the other camps are."

There aren't different paths for different people. There's the straight and narrow path and few there be that find it. Those who aren't on the straight and narrow path are wandering on some forbidden path. 

We need to know what the straight and narrow path is. We also need to know what these forbidden paths are and the types of people who are on them, or we might end up on one of these forbidden paths without realizing it. 

For example, we need to know if the FLDS who follow Warren Jeffs are on the right path or not. Same goes for those who follow Denver Snuffer and a host of other LDS fringe prophets. Same goes for the members of various sectarian Christian denominations and so on. 

Likewise we also need to know if those members of the church who believe that the Church can never go astray no matter what, who put their blind trust in those who lead the church because they believe that it is impossible for their leaders to lead them astray, are on the correct path. 

Each group believe that they are on the true path and even that God has told them that they are on the correct path. But it is impossible for them all to be on the correct path. At most only one can be. 

That's my point. 

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