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Seeing Christ / Experiencing the Second Comforter


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4 hours ago, Navidad said:

Are you certain of all of this? Are you open to considering other interpretations, or are you satisfied that you have thee Truth? No other interpretations need apply! That's a sincere question. I am trying to better understand the certainty with which the faithful LDS member holds important beliefs. Or perhaps is the belief about who is the second Comforter an appendage to use a Joseph Smith word or phrase, and therefore not pivotal or salvific? If you can find a quote from an official church source does that determine your position?

Admittedly this isn’t a hill I am willing to die on. This is far from any core belief of the church. You can hardly find anything on the church website about the second comforter.

I also don’t think our understanding the the 2nd comforter comes from John 14. I think our understanding of it comes from JSjr

2 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

This is entirely normal.  What is important to ask first is, What is the formal Canon of Scripture for a particular religious organization.  Then, What are the correct interpretations of that Scripture?

Just a quick clarification. I don’t think John 14:16 is referring to Christ. It seems clear to me that it is the HG. The footnotes seem to suggest the same thing as it references the HG.

I’ll also point out that Christ is saying “another comforter”. As far as I can tell, the only reference to the “second comforter” comes from JSjr and is only later repeated by church leaders.

I’m not sure where your beliefs sit in relation to authority, but I imagine someone like Joseph Smith has authority to speak on what the second comforter is

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1 hour ago, Fether said:

Admittedly this isn’t a hill I am willing to die on. This is far from any core belief of the church. You can hardly find anything on the church website about the second comforter.

I also don’t think our understanding the the 2nd comforter comes from John 14. I think our understanding of it comes from JSjr

Just a quick clarification. I don’t think John 14:16 is referring to Christ. It seems clear to me that it is the HG. The footnotes seem to suggest the same thing as it references the HG.

As I have already pointed out in this thread, Jesus is speaking in John 14:16, and is clearly speaking about the Holy Ghost.  The meaning is crystal clear that the Holy Ghost will be sent later, at the request of Jesus.  One does not need to consult footnotes to see that.

1 hour ago, Fether said:

I’ll also point out that Christ is saying “another comforter”. As far as I can tell, the only reference to the “second comforter” comes from JSjr and is only later repeated by church leaders.

I’m not sure where your beliefs sit in relation to authority, but I imagine someone like Joseph Smith has authority to speak on what the second comforter is

The formal History of the Church edited by B. H. Roberts often has claims made by others put in the mouth of Joseph Smith -- long after his death.

Moreover, Joseph is not infallible and can have opinions just like anyone else.  Most statements attributed to him do not have canonical scriptural status.

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22 minutes ago, Fether said:

Does a statement require a canonical connection to be true?

Absolutely not.  And not every word that makes it into canon is inspired or true.

Peter and Paul had opinions just as Joseph and Brigham.  Theirs just managed to survive 2000 years.

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6 hours ago, JLHPROF said:

Absolutely not.  And not every word that makes it into canon is inspired or true.

Peter and Paul had opinions just as Joseph and Brigham.  Theirs just managed to survive 2000 years.

Just seeing where you stand in that bit. 
 

Well here is what I believe:

- Man can see Christ. I feel like there are enough scriptures and quotes saying this for it to be true.

- If BH Roberts coined the phrase “2nd comforter” to mean “a comforter after the HG who is Christ” then I have no problem using it in the same fashion. Again, I only see one source if the phrase of “second comforter” so I don’t quite understand where the conflict is here. No one seems to be disputing this aside from a few who suggest John 14:16 is a reference to the second comforter (which I mentioned I don’t believe it is). 

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11 hours ago, Fether said:

Does a statement require a canonical connection to be true?

Certainly not.  Everyone can have an opinion, and some such opinions may even be correct, but as Brother Brigham said:  "Study the word of God, and preach it and not your opinions, for no man's opinion is worth a straw."  Times & Seasons, I/1 (Nov 1839), 13, online at http://www.centerplace.org/history/ts/v1n01.htm .    

Isaiah 8:20, "To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them."

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5 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Certainly not.  Everyone can have an opinion, and some such opinions may even be correct, but as Brother Brigham said:  "Study the word of God, and preach it and not your opinions, for no man's opinion is worth a straw."  Times & Seasons, I/1 (Nov 1839), 13, online at http://www.centerplace.org/history/ts/v1n01.htm .    

Isaiah 8:20, "To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them."

I agree with you.

Whether a revelation makes it into canon or not may change its official status but it isn't a determinant of truth.  Many truths never made it into scripture, many revelations were never put to a canonical vote, and many things made it into canon that aren't inspired.
IE "“The Songs of Solomon are not inspired writings” - Joseph Smith
"Well, I believe that the Bible contains the word of God, and the words of good men and the words of bad men; the words of good angels and the words of bad angels and words of the devil; and also the words uttered by the *** when he rebuked the prophet in his madness." - Brigham Young

Relying on canon to save us, a sola scriptura approach, has led many astray.

Brigham also said 
"There lies the Bible, the Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, the revelations God has given through Joseph for the salvation of the people in the nineteenth century. Yet I would not give the ashes of a rye straw for these three books so far as they are efficacious for the salvation of any man that lives, without the living oracles of God."

Joseph taught that "There is no salvation between the two lids of the Bible without a legal administrator."

 

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3 hours ago, JLHPROF said:

I agree with you.

Whether a revelation makes it into canon or not may change its official status but it isn't a determinant of truth.  Many truths never made it into scripture, many revelations were never put to a canonical vote, and many things made it into canon that aren't inspired.
IE "“The Songs of Solomon are not inspired writings” - Joseph Smith
"Well, I believe that the Bible contains the word of God, and the words of good men and the words of bad men; the words of good angels and the words of bad angels and words of the devil; and also the words uttered by the *** when he rebuked the prophet in his madness." - Brigham Young

Relying on canon to save us, a sola scriptura approach, has led many astray.

Brigham also said 
"There lies the Bible, the Book of Mormon and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, the revelations God has given through Joseph for the salvation of the people in the nineteenth century. Yet I would not give the ashes of a rye straw for these three books so far as they are efficacious for the salvation of any man that lives, without the living oracles of God."

Joseph taught that "There is no salvation between the two lids of the Bible without a legal administrator."

The authority of the Canon of Holy Scripture is not sola scriptura.  This is a Protestants lie.  LDS theology holds the Canon in first place, but does not interpret it according to a set of pre-existing Greek philosophical categories, as the Protestants do.  That is the true meaning of Protestant sola scriptura, which pretends that the plain meaning of the text will be immediately visible to the reader -- which is the source of rampant and continuing denominationalism.  LDS theology rejects the silly notion that all one has to do is read the canonical text, and that is the end of it.  Instead, LDS theology insists that only the Holy Spirit can interpret Scripture.  Why?  Because it was given by the Holy Spirit, and may only be interpreted correctly by that same means.  However, at the same time, there is a kind of magesterium within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, just as there is in Roman Catholicism:  Current and past leaders of those churches give traditional guidance and direction to the membership.  Roman Catholics speak of that tradition as the sacred deposit of the faith.

Church Newsroom, May 4, 2007, quoting Elder Christofferson:

Quote

“Not every statement made by a Church leader, past or present, necessarily constitutes doctrine. A single statement made by a single leader on a single occasion often represents a personal, though well-considered, opinion, but is not meant to be officially binding for the whole Church. ....
This doctrine resides in the four “standard works” of scripture (the Holy Bible, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price), official declarations and proclamations, and the Articles of Faith. Isolated statements are often taken out of context, leaving their original meaning distorted.”  https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.org/article/approaching-mormon-doctrine , citing D. Todd Christofferson, “The Doctrine of Christ,” https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/general-conference/2012/04/the-doctrine-of-christ?lang=eng .

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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  • 3 weeks later...
6 minutes ago, filovirus said:

Which of those two depictions represents Jehovah from the OT?

Are you implying that Jehovah and Jesus are some kind of a split personality? Are you disputing the characterization of Jesus in this photo in favor of more ancient writings/stories about a more vengeful God identified as Jehovah?

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9 minutes ago, HappyJackWagon said:

Are you implying that Jehovah and Jesus are some kind of a split personality? Are you disputing the characterization of Jesus in this photo in favor of more ancient writings/stories about a more vengeful God identified as Jehovah?

I'm just saying that in the OT, at times Jehovah appears very similar to 'Colonizer Jesus'. For example, endorses church and state: King David, King Josiah, King Solomon. Another example, silent in the face of oppression. The covenant code allows an Israelite to beat their slaves, just not unto death. Women were treated as property.

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11 minutes ago, Calm said:

Neither is my opinion, both are pretty one dimensional lists.

Also, both versions did drive the money-changers out of the temple.  Holy war referred only to the spiritual, not the physical.  Jesus was a direct descendant King David of the tribe of Judah.  Therefore a Jew in all cases but did give the higher law in most dispensations (i.e. Christianity).

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  • 4 weeks later...

Isn't there an ancient Jewish and LDS teaching of the differences between a "Prophet", who mostly hears the word of God and like young prophet Samuel wandering around at night because he's hearing but seeing nothing and Seers who are defined by their visions, accession visions, particularly of God. "A seer is greater than a prophet." (Mosiah 8:15)

Then is the prophesied Condemnation in 3 Nephi 36:8-11

"these things have I written, which are a lesser part of the things which he taught the people; and I have written them to the intent that they may be brought again unto this people, from the Gentiles, according to the words which Jesus hath spoken. And when they shall have received this, which is expedient that they should have first, to try their faith, and if it shall so be that they shall believe these things then shall the greater things be made manifest unto them. And if it so be that they will not believe these things, then shall the greater things be withheld from them, unto their condemnation. Behold, I was about to write them, all which were engraven upon the plates of Nephi, but the Lord forbade it, saying: I will try the faith of my people."

A trial that we failed.

And your minds in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because you have treated lightly the things you have received—Which vanity and unbelief have brought the whole church under condemnation. And this condemnation resteth upon the children of Zion, even all. And they shall remain under this condemnation until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not only to say, but to do according to that which I have written.” (D&C 84:54–57.)

President Benson seemed to think we were still under this "Condemnation", by down playing the Book of Mormon, trying to "fit in" better by attempting to depict ourselves as just another Christian denomination alongside various other Protestant denominations. And that the Book of Mormon has not been, nor is it yet, the center of our personal study. (Ezra Taft Benson, Ensign, May 1986, pp. 5–6.)

As I understood it, if this condemnation is the cause of why we don't have other books added to the canon yet, then the need of a Seer to translate such records is not required at this time. So perhaps the Prophets have simply not been Seers, at least not the caliber of Joseph Smith which the revelations were more visual and frequent.

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On 3/30/2022 at 10:49 AM, JLHPROF said:

"Well, I believe that the Bible contains the word of God, and the words of good men and the words of bad men; the words of good angels and the words of bad angels and words of the devil; and also the words uttered by the @$$ when he rebuked the prophet in his madness." - Brigham Young

 

Relying on canon to save us, a sola scriptura approach, has led many astray.

I agree with Brigham and with you on this point.

One of the errors introduced by granting all canonized scripture "Word of God" status is this:  By decreeing that everything within the text is "the Word of God", we diminish the relative weight of those portions which legitimately ARE worthy of being called "the Word of God".   For example, it is out of place to give the words of Paul equal weight and authority to the words of Jesus Christ the Son of God. 

Errors like this arise from well-intentioned formalized man-made beliefs, or creeds, which result in well-meaning people making multiple far-reaching mistakes.  Note that such man-made creeds are what the Personage who addressed Joseph Smith in the First Vision had a problem with:  "I was answered that I must join none of them, for they were all wrong, and the Personage who addressed me said that all their Creeds were an abomination in his sight..." (emphasis mine)

(To clarify, my understanding is NOT that other religions of the day were an "abomination", but rather that their creeds - their well-meaning manmade beliefs - were an "abomination", presumably because they decreed a closed canon which delegitimized any communication from God not already in the Bible and effectively diluted the importance of the actual words of God contained therein.)

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20 hours ago, manol said:

To clarify, my understanding is NOT that other religions of the day were an "abomination", but rather that their creeds - their well-meaning manmade beliefs - were an "abomination", presumably because they decreed a closed canon which delegitimized any communication from God not already in the Bible and effectively diluted the importance of the actual words of God contained therein.)

But Joseph Smith continues:

Quote

and the Personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that those professors were all corrupt; that: “they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof."

So it's not just creeds, but all those who profess the creeds. I assume this means priests and ministers, but it could also mean believers. I profess a belief in the Nicene creed.

It's one thing to say someone religious beliefs are wrong. It's another to say that they are insincere hypocrites.

I also don't get the "deny the power thereof" part. Christians don't deny the power of God.

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16 minutes ago, MiserereNobis said:

But Joseph Smith continues:

So it's not just creeds, but all those who profess the creeds. I assume this means priests and ministers, but it could also mean believers. I profess a belief in the Nicene creed.

It's one thing to say someone religious beliefs are wrong. It's another to say that they are insincere hypocrites.

I also don't get the "deny the power thereof" part. Christians don't deny the power of God.

I've always considered this passage to be about those particular local preachers and not necessarily a commentary on literally all preachers. This position make the passage more palatable. 

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20 hours ago, MiserereNobis said:

But Joseph Smith continues:

So it's not just creeds, but all those who profess the creeds. I assume this means priests and ministers, but it could also mean believers. I profess a belief in the Nicene creed.

It's one thing to say someone religious beliefs are wrong. It's another to say that they are insincere hypocrites.

I also don't get the "deny the power thereof" part. Christians don't deny the power of God.

I assume he is referring to New York's surrounding populace, mostly Protestant that disbelieve in the priesthood. They 'act' like they've been called of God on one hand, while on the other hand denies that God speaks to man. They say there are no divine authorities to administer the gospel. They may go through the motions, like preform baptisms, but deny there is any power to make it binding. They would deny spiritual gifts, as there wouldn't be a  "charismatic" evangelical movement for a long while.

So I don't believe its aimed at Catholics specifically by use of the word "creed", but I suppose that they are included in the sweeping statement. The Pope receives no binding revelation they way LDS see how the Apostolic Succession should operate, but rather the Pope makes decisions based on what he thinks is best, and according to scripture. There is no record by anyone claiming that the councils of Bishops ever claimed authority to write a creed that define Christianity, nor to receiving any divine revelations nor made any appeals to God, but by a series of legislative debates.

Or its not meant in the sense that they deny the power per se, it is that they haven't a proper priesthood authority. Without that priesthood, they have a priestly "form of Godliness" but simply "[don't] have the power thereof".

Edited by Pyreaux
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11 hours ago, Pyreaux said:

Or its not meant in the sense that they deny the power per se, it is that they haven't a proper priesthood authority. Without that priesthood, they have a priestly "form of Godliness" but simply "[don't] have the power thereof".

I am wondering if you would describe the attributes of the power that a Godly LDS bishop has, that a Godly Mennonite or Catholic bishop does not have? How is that power manifested on a day by day basis? How would you differentiate between the priestly "form of Godliness" that a Godly Lutheran pastor has from that of a Godly LDS leader?

I interact regularly with all of them. I cannot figure out a significant difference in any of the best of them in terms of spirituality, Godliness, authority, or power. Their spirituality, Godliness and power come from their relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Their authority comes from their particular faith group and in that sense, from God.

No LDS priesthood holder holds any kind of authority in any other church but the LDS church, correct? Is that not a fact? No Mennonite or Catholic pastor holds authority outside of his or her own group, unless another group recognizes and honors the group that granted the authority, right? I am less interested in authority than in Godliness, power, and spirituality. Wouldn't you have to interact and spend time with many priesthood holders from each of these groups to determine if there is a significant difference (say .05, or the like) between the spiritual attributes, including power; Godliness, kindness, meekness, and/or holiness between any of them? Have you done that? I have.

Granted, there is a big difference in authority because authority to perform ordinances and sacraments are specifically group-related, are they not? The specific authority that is granted by ordination and is sometimes called "holy-orders" is certainly much more universal in the hands of a Catholic priest than in the hands of a Baptist minister, LDS priesthood holder, Mennonite, or Pentecostal bishop, right? As much as I dearly love our former bishop who spent hours with us in our home last Sunday, the only authority he has in our home is that which we willingly and freely grant him. We grant him that authority because of the wonderful Godliness and spirituality that he manifests in all of his dealings with us. It is identical to how we felt about our Mennonite bishop in our Florida church.

When I go to an LDS ward, I have literally zero authority - I can't even be in charge of cleaning the building. When I take my closest LDS priesthood holding friend with me to a Mennonite church for an interfaith service or concert, he has zero authority in that church. All my years of exposure to each of them informs that there is no manifest difference in the power, Godliness, Holiness, piety, of the very best or worst, for that matter, of all of them. So, let me conclude the way I started, can you describe the attributes of a Godly LDS priesthood holder that makes him (I can't say or her) different from either a Godly Methodist royal priesthood holder, a Methodist pastor, or bishop? How are the attributes manifested in real life? Thanks.

Edited by Navidad
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6 hours ago, Navidad said:

I am wondering if you would describe the attributes of the power that a Godly LDS bishop has, that a Godly Mennonite or Catholic bishop does not have? How is that power manifested on a day by day basis? How would you differentiate between the priestly "form of Godliness" that a Godly Lutheran pastor has from that of a Godly LDS leader?

I interact regularly with all of them. I cannot figure out a significant difference in any of the best of them in terms of spirituality, Godliness, authority, or power. Their spirituality, Godliness and power come from their relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Their authority comes from their particular faith group and in that sense, from God.

No LDS priesthood holder holds any kind of authority in any other church but the LDS church, correct? Is that not a fact? No Mennonite or Catholic pastor holds authority outside of his or her own group, unless another group recognizes and honors the group that granted the authority, right? I am less interested in authority than in Godliness, power, and spirituality. Wouldn't you have to interact and spend time with many priesthood holders from each of these groups to determine if there is a significant difference (say .05, or the like) between the spiritual attributes, including power; Godliness, kindness, meekness, and/or holiness between any of them? Have you done that? I have.

Granted, there is a big difference in authority because authority to perform ordinances and sacraments are specifically group-related, are they not? The specific authority that is granted by ordination and is sometimes called "holy-orders" is certainly much more universal in the hands of a Catholic priest than in the hands of a Baptist minister, LDS priesthood holder, Mennonite, or Pentecostal bishop, right? As much as I dearly love our former bishop who spent hours with us in our home last Sunday, the only authority he has in our home is that which we willingly and freely grant him. We grant him that authority because of the wonderful Godliness and spirituality that he manifests in all of his dealings with us. It is identical to how we felt about our Mennonite bishop in our Florida church.

When I go to an LDS ward, I have literally zero authority - I can't even be in charge of cleaning the building. When I take my closest LDS priesthood holding friend with me to a Mennonite church for an interfaith service or concert, he has zero authority in that church. All my years of exposure to each of them informs that there is no manifest difference in the power, Godliness, Holiness, piety, of the very best or worst, for that matter, of all of them. So, let me conclude the way I started, can you describe the attributes of a Godly LDS priesthood holder that makes him (I can't say or her) different from either a Godly Methodist royal priesthood holder, a Methodist pastor, or bishop? How are the attributes manifested in real life? Thanks.

Many non-Mormon priests are apostate, but if earnest and living righteously, will have their efforts blessed accordingly, by the power of their faith, but the true power of the LDS Priest lays in keys to the power of binding, these are the bonds of the oath of the Everlasting Covenant. For example, back when Roman Catholic Priests still preformed exorcisms, they resorted to tying down the physical body of the possessed person. Even though we see when Christ exorcised devils, he didn’t bind the person, rather He was binding devilish spirits by power and authority that had been given to him and by the swearing of the oath. Christ had the Melchizedek Priest’s sealing or binding power the Pharisee’s Aaronic Priests didn’t possess. The bonds are covenant priesthood bonds, one must spiritually bind the devilish spirit first before attempting to take its possessions away, the physical body. Do I know an LDS priest whose used their power to exorcise a demon? I do, his name was Papaloa Ete. But the least flashy but most important powers they possess is the keys to the seals of baptism, binding of the holy spirit, the marriage sealing, etc which is seen on a regular basis.

LDS women are inducted into the priesthood. They are baptized, anointed, endowed and married, which is the "highest order of the priesthood", and though she might not be called to serve in the same manner as a man, an LDS woman who has faith might find success in exorcising a demon or healing with the laying on of hands. I recall one of the famous pioneer story of a woman who laid hands on her collapsed ox and healed it. I want to say her name was "Snow"... maybe...

Edited by Pyreaux
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11 hours ago, Pyreaux said:

recall one of the famous pioneer story of a woman who laid hands on her collapsed ox and healed it. I want to say her name was "Snow"... maybe...

Mary Fielding Smith iirc.  She wasn’t the one who blessed the oxen (it happened multiple times), though many of us were taught that version of the story from way back.

https://media.ldscdn.org/images/media-library/gospel-art/church-history/trek-west-82836-gospel-art-kit-story-412.pdf?download=true

Edited by Calm
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There is a power to accomplish great feats that is unrestricted, anything can be done with enough faith. There are some inborn spiritual gifts, everyone supposedly has one.

But there is also power and authority of Melchizedek Priests that the scriptures describe as uncommon to the Levitical priesthood. The Jewish High Priests and John the Baptists didn't have the binding power to control spirits, heal and other miracles. As it was Binding power of Exorcism that the Priest Kings of old, like Solomon, used to bring spirits into submission. Its the same power by which Christ forced rebel spirits to obey; spirits that possess, spirits of infirmity, wild spirits locked in nature, and thus the winds and seas obeyed. While its possible to get them to obey without the priesthood, its just not common. Therefore the true power that other faiths don't possess is the power to preform ordinances that they administer, and those other displays of power are basically signs, as sealing power is otherwise invisible. That power is what is commonly denied. Perhaps not vocally, maybe by just ignorance. Though the Catholics may not deny Exorcism, but only the Pope has the keys of the kingdom.

Those are my thoughts on the matter.

Edited by Pyreaux
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