Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Restitution of All Things

Q1. "Proof of scripture in New Testament where Mormon church was established?"
Q2. "Proof of the establishment of the doctrine?"

Q3. "Proof of the Prophet Joesph Smith in the bible?"
Q4. "Proof of where Mormons gave biblical authority to have bishops, a prophet, and apostles?"

Great questions. I will support my answers with the Bible but please understand that other churches and Pastors will likely disagree with my interpretation of both the meaning and context of these verses. I have friends of many different Christian denominations and non-denominations. Every one of us desire to accept the whole Bible and not to be picker-and-chooser. However, while we all love the Bible, we can disagree about Bible interpretation as well as Bible context. My friends of other faiths interpret the Bible relying on a background of their faith tradition and what clergy have said about the Bible. After many centuries, there is a lot to choose from. LDS benefit because we interpret the Bible through the lens of the restoration and modern Prophets and Apostles. Where many opinions on the Bible exist, the Prophet can go to God for clarification on context and meaning. And that is why in addition to studying the Bible, the Bible tells us to rely upon the Holy Spirit, which was the gift of comfort given by Jesus Christ which He promised would "guide us into all truth", and "testify of [Him]", Therefore, If we really want to know the truth, the Bible tells us to knock, seek, and to "ask of God" in prayer (James 1:5). Only God can prove it to you.

All 4 questions are really derivations of the same question. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a restored church and not a branch off the Catholic church or a Protestant Church. Therefore, one way to address all these questions would be to show where the Bible demonstrates that the original Church of Jesus Christ fell into an Apostasy and therefore needed restoring. LDS interpret the following scriptures from the Bible to foretell that along with the crucifixion of Christ, and the destruction of the Jewish Temple, there would also be a rejection of true Christian authority.

1. Restitution of All Things. Throughout the Old and New Testaments, the Bible foretells through allegory and prophetic pronouncement of a future falling away and restoration in the Last Days. After reviewing many of these prophecies of the apostasy and restoration from the time of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, down to Jesus Christ; Peter sums it all up when he commands all men to repent and be converted to Christ who would not return until after the apostasy and restoration or " times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began." Peter says clearly Christs Second Coming will not occur until there is a "time of restitution of all things". Similarly, Paul says Christs Second Coming will not occur until there is a "falling away first". Why would Peter and Paul speak of a falling way and a restitution if the covenant and authority given by Christ would continue uninterrupted? It seems clear enough here that there would be no need of a future refreshing and restitution of all things, if there wasn't first an apostasy or falling away of all things.

Acts 3: 19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when times the of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; 20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: 21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. . . 24 Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.

Just as Peter said, the Old and New Testaments contain many prophecies and allegories to a great future falling away or spiritual famine as well as an spiritual restoration before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. The following paragraphs will attempt to highlight where the prophets in the Bible have foretold the Apostasy and Restoration just as Peter said. Take special note of key words like "prevail", "overcome", "flood", and "famine." as they are a clue that different scriptures are related.

2. Cain kills Able. One of the first stories of the Bible is the tragic story of the sorrow of Adam and Eve over Cain murdering his brother Able. But not long after, Adam and Eve rejoiced again with the birth of Seth. The death of Able and the birth of Seth serves as a type and allegory of the Great Apostasy following the Death of Christ and the Restoration before Christ's Second Coming. Like Cain and Able, Wickedness prevailed at first, but Righteousness was restored and will overcome in the end.
3. Noah and the Flood. God cleanses the Earth because of the wickedness of humanity and then re-established His covenant with Noah and his family. Again, wickedness prevailed at first, but righteousness was restored and would overcome in the end.
4. Abraham leaves Babylon. Abraham realizes that he was brought up in an apostate and idolatrous religion and leaves Babylon and is led to find the restored truth with Melchezidek, the High Priest and King of Salem.
5. Joseph is sold into Egypt. The older sons of Jacob lost out on the birthright and rights to the priesthood authority because of sin. Joseph, a younger brother received this birthright which made the other 11 brothers very jealous and resulted in their selling Joseph into Egypt. Many years later, the whole family of Jacob is forced to go to Egypt and are saved from the famine by Joseph. The House of Israel being saved by Joseph during a physical famine foreshadows the House of Israel in the Last Days being saved by another Joseph during a future spiritual famine.
6. Moses leaves Egypt. Moses is lead out of Egypt and is led to the tent of Jethro the High Priest of Midian where the truth of God was restored.
7. Moses and Aaron at Horeb. The Bible tells us an important story about Moses receiving that 10 commandments. God at that time wanted to give Israel the full gospel covenant, and God invited all the Elders of Israel up into the mountain. But the Elders refused, and told Moses "You go and speak for us". While Moses was away, the Elders became impatient and gave Aaron all their gold so that he could make them a false God to worship. Likewise, before the Second Coming, people will say Christ delayeth his return and some will give of their money to support false religion. False religion allows people to go through the motions of religion without expectations of repentance.
8. Eli and Samuel. Peter makes particular mention of this story. 1 Samuel 2-3 tells the story of Eli the High Priest of Israel. Eli's sons rejected the Lord due to being guilty of fornication. Consequently, the Lord withdrew the rights of the priesthood from the house of Eli and later bestowed the honor of High Priest and the blessings of the priesthood upon Samuel. However, for a time, the Bible says that the heavens were closed until the calling of Samuel who was just a young boy. Just like the days of Eli and Samuel, before the Last Days, there was a Great Apostasy were there was no "open visions" until God called another boy prophet by the name of Joseph Smith.

1 Sam 3:1 "And the word of the Lord was precious in those days; there was no open vision."

9. Elijah and the Famine. Elijah confronts king Ahab and Jezebel who promote the worship of Baal and Ashtoreth in Israel. Jezebel orders the killing of all Jewish Priests but Obadiah hides away 100 priests. Elijah calls down the a famine as punishment which lasts 3 1/2 years (Apostasy). During that time he is fed by the Widow of Zarephath. At the end of the drought Elijah calls down fire from heaven to consume the offering and convince the Israelites by a mightly manifestation of the power of God (Restoration).
10. Isaiah's Marvelous Work. Isaiah 29 speaks of a marvelous work and a wonder in the Last Days. Here, God says that he has covered or taken away prophets and seers from the people. All people are in a deep sleep or apostasy, but in the Last Days God will restore the truth through a book that will come out of the ground as voice out of the dust. That book is the Book of Mormon. Isaiah says that through the message of this book, those that erred in spirit will finally come to understand and learn true doctrine.

Isa 29:10 For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered. . . 14 Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. . . 24 They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding, and they that murmured shall learn doctrine.

11. Book of Jeremiah. The whole Book of Jeremiah is about the Apostasy of the Jews at the time preceding the Babylonian Captivity, but it also describes and foretells the future Apostasy and spiritual captivity following the death of Christ and His Apostles. The literal apostasy and captivity of the Jews and Jerusalem becomes an allegory of the future spiritual captivity, falling away and apostasy of the Christian Church. Just as Jerusalem was completely destroyed and the Jews were scattered among many nations, so we see much of the Christian world scattered among various denominations and non-denominations. But God promises He will have compassion on His people and restore them again to the truth.

Jer 3:14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion: 15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
Jer 9: 4 Take ye heed every one of his neighbour, and trust ye not in any brother: . . . they will deceive every one his neighbour, and will not speak the truth:. . . 16 I will scatter them also among the heathen ,
Jer 12:10 Many pastors have destroyed my vineyard. . . 15 And it shall come to pass, after that I have plucked them out I will return, and have compassion on them, and will bring them again, every man to his heritage, and every man to his land.
Jer 16:16 Behold, I will send for many fishers, saith the Lord, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks.
Jer 31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

12. Stick of Joseph. Ezekiel is told that in the Last Days when all the 12 tribes of the House of Israel (not just Judah) are restored to their Promised Land, that the tribes will have 2 records of scripture called the "stick of Joseph" and the "stick of Judah". Ezekiel is told that prior to this Israel will be in great apostasy, but that through the unification of these records, the House of Israel which is the True Christian Church would finally be restored, sanctified, unified and purified. The "Stick of Judah" is the Bible, and the "Stick of Joseph" is the Book of Mormon.

Ezek. 37: 16, 19 Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions: . . .19 Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand. (see Ezek 16-28).

13. The Beast. Daniel 7 and John in Revelation foretell of a terrible beast (Roman Empire), that would arise and persecute, overcome, prevail against, and kill the saints. Daniel says that this same kingdom would change the times and the laws of the true gospel and religion (Apostasy) but in the end all dominion would be given to the people of God (Restoration). The Beast would be given a mouth that would blaspheme God, His word (Christ), His tabernacle (Christ's Body, Physicality of God, Church, and Temple), and persecute the Saints. This story is the story of what is called the Abomination of Desolation. Scripture has multiple fulfillment so this likely also applies to End-Times and the Anti-Christ.

Dan 7:21 I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; . . . 25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time (= 3 1/2 year famine or Apostasy).

Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months (= 3 1/2 year apostasy). 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. 7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

14. Amos Foretells a Spiritual Famine. Amos says that before the Last Days a spiritual famine would come. But unlike the day of Abraham, and Moses who were led to the truth, this time, the truth would not be found anywhere on the Earth.

Amos 8: 11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: 12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.

15. Destruction of the Temple. Christ foretells that the Sun would dim, the moon would turn red, and the stars would fall from the sky meaning that all sources of heavenly light, revelation, and knowledge would cease. Christ also said of the temple (His body, His church) ;that not one stone would be left upon another (Apostasy). While the individual stones remained there wasn't a fully put together Christian church during the time of the Dark Ages that contained the cohesive whole and fullness of the truth of Christ's Church built upon a foundation of prophets and apostles; Christ being the chief cornerstone. But in the end, Christ says destroy this body and I will raise it up again the 3rd Day (Restoration). Also, remember that Christ said all this would be fulfilled at least once in that generation.

Matt 24: 2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down. 15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet. . . 29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: . . . 34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

16. Church Built on the Rock. Matthew tells us a story about Peter's witness and testimony that Jesus is the Christ. We are taught that Peter received this witness by revelation and not scientific proof (flesh and blood). Jesus Christ promised that upon the rock of personal revelation and priesthood authority and keys, the gates of Hell would never prevail. Christ also promised to always be with His church. But, this promise doesn't mean that the people of the Church would alway stay with Christ. While Satan has no power against the church built upon revelation and Apostles and Prophets. Satan was able to prevail for a season when the people rejected revelation and the authority of the Apostles and Prophets.

Matt 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. 18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven:

17. Jewish Exorcists Overcome. Later on in the Bible Luke tells the story in Acts that a son of Jewish priest attempted to invoke the name of Jesus to cast out evil spirits. But the evil spirits did not recognize the authority or faith of these Jews despite their using the name of Jesus. Consequently, Luke says that these Jews were overcome and Satan prevailed against them. If we reject the true Christian authority of Christ, then we will be left spiritually naked and wounded.

Acts 19:13 Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. 14 And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? 16 And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.

18. Priesthood Authority. The New Testament teaches us about how priesthood authority is transmitted. LDS accept the doctrine of a priesthood of all believers where all members can enjoy the blessings of the priesthood instead of just the birthright son or one tribe. However, LDS also accept that the priesthood still must be transmitted by being called by God and by receiving the laying on of hands by someone who has that authority. Being called by God means a person is appointed by a divinely appointed hierarchy instead of volunteering himself or being elected. When the Apostles and Prophets were killed, that authority was lost despite God calling others as Apostles like James the Brother of Jesus, Paul, Matthias, and Barnabas. After the authority was finally lost, the priesthood was restored again when Peter James and John appeared to Joseph Smith and laid their hands on his head. In the restored Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints there is the same Apostles, Prophets, Bishops, Elders, and Deacons as in the Original Christian Church.

Eph 4: 11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
John 15: 16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you,
Heb 5:4 And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.
1 Tim. 4: 14 Neglect not the giftt hat is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery.

19. Paul foretells the Falling Away. Paul warns that Christ Second Coming would not occur until there was a great falling away first. The word for falling away in Greek is "apostasia" or Apostasy.

2 Thes. 2: 3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

20. Gainsaying of Korah. Paul speaks of apostasy and authority using several Old Testament examples in His letters to Jude and Titus. So, we shouldn't think that just because a story is in the OT it no longer applies. The story of Core or Korah is very interesting when it comes to authority. Korah was a Levite but was not a son of Aaron. Korah was jealous of Aaron and believed he could lead Israel as well as or better then Aaron. Korah rebelled against Moses and Aaron and in response, God caused the earth to opened and swallow Korah and his followers. Paul warns us in several places that there would be false priests and false prophets who will practice "gainsaying," "priestcraft", and "vain talking" for "filthy lucre". Priest craft or Gainsaying involves appointing yourself or being elected as a pastor, making it a career or "craft", and preaching for money. Conversely, local LDS leadership and teachers are always called from the top down and serve in Christ's Church as an unpaid volunteer.

Jude 1: 11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.
Titus 1: 9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers. 10 For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: 11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.

21. Woman fleeing into the wilderness. John tells the Early Saints a cryptic story that Satan would persecute and prevail against a woman (true church). However, John says the woman would be carried safely away into the wilderness during a period of spiritual famine until coming forth again to overcome at last. That coming forth would be accompanied by another angel who would delay the tribulation and bring the seal of God and restore the everlasting gospel of Christ. So, while the Beast is marking his people, God is sealing the elect in the forehead in preparation for the tribulation and the Second Coming of Christ. So, this restoration is not another gospel, but its the same gospel brought by another angel. This other angel is Moroni who revealed the Book of Mormon to Joseph Smith. Moroni is the angel on top of the LDS temples.

Rev 12: 6 And the woman (true church) fled into the wilderness (apostasy), where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days (3 1/2 year famine).. . . 14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. 15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. 16 And the earth helped the woman (Book of Mormon), and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.
Rev. 14: 6 And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,
Rev. 7: 2 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, 3 Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

Some say it just isn't possible that God would allow His Church to fall into Apostasy. But. just as Christ allowed evil men to kill his body and he raised it from the dead on the third day; Jesus Christ allowed evil men to at first prevail against his church and temple. Now with the restoration of all things in this the dispensation of the fullness of times, God will overcome by restoring the plain and precious truths to the Bible with the Book of Mormon, and has restored his church with 12 Apostles and a prophet, and the proper priesthood keys and authority.

Now, the question remains, was there an Apostasy and was there a Restoration. The way God has given to know this is by the Book of Mormon. We are invited to read it, ponder its message (focus on what is it saying), and then pray to God in the name of Jesus Christ if it is true. If you pray with faith, believing in Christ, you are promised a spiritual witness of the Book of Mormon by the Holy Spirit. There is no other way. Sure, It would be great to have smoking gun proof of the resurrection of Christ and of Nephites in America , but God has given that some questions can only be answered by prayer and learning to listen to the Holy Ghost. And that is done on purpose.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The End of All Nations

Again, let me remind the reader, despite the name of this blog, nothing on this blog represents official LDS Doctrine. The content on this blog are my personal opinion. The reason for using this title is so that anti-LDS can't.

D&C 88:77 And I give unto you a commandment that you shall teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom. 78 Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand; 79 Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms—80 That ye may be prepared in all things when I shall send you again to magnify the calling whereunto I have called you, and the mission with which I have commissioned you.

“We are commanded by God to take this gospel to all the world. That is the cause that must unite us today. Only the gospel will save the world from the calamity of its own self-destruction. Only the gospel will unite men of all races and nationalities in peace. Only the gospel will bring joy, happiness, and salvation to the human family.” (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988, p. 167.)

In the Bible, the Book of Daniel has Daniel interpret King Nebakanezer's dream. In that dream, Daniel sees an idol with a head of gold, shoulders of silver, belly or bronze, and legs of iron, and feet of iron mixed with clay. Daniel was given the interpretation that the head represented the Babylonian Empire, the silver shoulders was the Persian Empire, the Bronze belly was Greece, and the Iron legs were Rome. It is interesting how those metals are associated historically with these Empires. Daniel is shown that a rock is cut out of the mountains without hands which rolls forth, and grows until it strikes the idol and destroys it.

Later on in Daniel, Daniel describes the same thing, but this time he is shown 4 Beasts arise out of the ocean. The first had the head of a lion with eagle wings. The second was a bear, the third was a 4-headed Leopard, and the fifth and most terrible and a combination of the previous 3. Again, this dream represents earthly kingdoms of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. Greece is described as a 4-headed beast because Greece split into 4 after the death of Alexander the Great.

But in the Last Days, there could be a latter-day fulfillment of this revelation to Daniel. If we look at history emerging from the Dark Ages and feudalism, the first great empire we see is the Spanish Empire beginning with Columbus in 1492 and ending with the 30-years war in Europe in 1618 and the decline of the Austro-Spanish Habsburg Empire. Spain suffered other defeats along the way such as defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 and then the War of Spanish Succession in 17o1, and finally the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805.

The French Empire was the next to come onto the scene beginning with the 30-years war in Europe in 1618 with Cardinal Richelieu and King Louis XIII. In 1685 France reversed the Edict of Nantes (1598) with the Edict of Fontainebleau and made Protestantism illegal. French Huguenots fled France for neighboring countries. After 1701 and the War of Spanish Succession, King Louis XIV fostered the Baroque period of art and music and France ruled the cultural world. French power continued until Napoleon in 1804-1814 at the battle of Waterloo.

Great Britain comprising 4 countries of Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and England from about 1801 to 1945 and the end of World War II. Just as the third empire Greece gave the world a universal language, Great Britain had widespread cultural, linguistic, and political influence. At its peak approximately a quarter of the Earth's total land area. It was often said that "the sun never sets upon the British Empire."

World War II brought about the rise of the fourth and last world empire: the United States. While the constitution is an inspired document, the economic and imperialistic practices of the US has hurt many countries. While we do have legitimate concerns over Nazism, Communism, and Radical Muslim Extremism, US business is guilty of selling Coca-Cola in 3rd-world countries in exchange for milk, deluging Eastern Europe in cigarettes, and supporting this man-made global warming farce that is preventing the 3rd-world from developing. In "Confessions of an Economic Hitman," and "The Secret History of the American Empire" we learn that Imperialist West encourages developing nations to take out huge loans from the World Bank. Then after the country cannot possibly repay the debt which was used by Western Businesses to build a refinery or a mine, we tell the country we will help them and even forgive their debt if they allow the US control over their natural resources and if they do not impose tariffs on US imports. This control stifles innovation and jobs in developing nations.

Gold Head, Lion and Eagle, Babylonian, 525 B.C. 457 B.C., Spain, 1492-1618
Silver Shoulders, Bear,
Medo-Persian, 457 B.C. 332 B.C., France, 1618-1815
Bronze Belly, 4-Headed Leopard,
Greece, 332 B.C. 30 B.C., Great Britain, 1815-1945
Iron Legs, 7-headed 10 horns,
Imperial Rome, 30 B.C. 476 A.D., United States, 1945 - Present.

After thinking a lot about the main threats to our freedom. Several things stand out to me. In the LDS "Proclamation to the World: The Family", the warning at the end by the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said that it would be policies that break down the family as the fundamental unit of society that would bring upon nations "the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets." This does not say the calamities will be caused by Islam or Communism; at least directly. Although it is our degrading traditional family values that empower these false ideologies.

In Joseph Smith's revelation on War, he said that the War of the States would begin in South Carolina and that the Southern States would seek assistance from Great Britain. The interesting thing about this prophecy is that Great Britain's support for the Confederacy was not in troops and ships but large loans to fund the war against the Union. These war loans were paid out of banks in Paris, France. When Abraham Lincoln found out that the Rothschild's were funding both sides of the war, he stopped paying interest on Union loans and started printing "greenbacks".
It is not a surprise to many that Lincoln was assassinated. Joseph Smith said what was done during the War of the States would spread war all over the world. Well to me, it seems banking was the issue here.

This was not the first time the Rothschild's made money funding both sides of a war. The Rothschild's made their fortune beginning with the Battle of Waterloo. The Rothschilds are claimed to have been funding both the Duke of Wellington and Napoleon. The story goes that Nathan Mayer Rothschild had informants on the battle field that raced the news of the battle back 24 hours before the general public learned the outcome. At first Rothschild began selling off his stocks or consols. Upon learning that Rothschild was selling off his consols, all the traders in London followed. Then just before the news of Wellington's win at Waterloo arrived, Rothschild had his men buy every last consol they could get their hands on. Upon learning that England was victorious, Rothschild's consols were now worth 20:1 what he had paid for them. Rothschild owned the British Empire.

I have discussed in previous posts how our current banking system, corporatocracy and economy hurts families, workers, creates classes, and keeps the 3rd-world impoverished. We should not forget that it was Rothschilds who was the major supporter for the slave trade also. While I do not ignore other threats, the Bible tells us that in the Last Days, an economic and political system will arise that will first destroy false religion (the Beast will devour the Harlot) before it ends up destroying all nations.

There exist certain persons of power who desire that the entire world be globally united. In fact, Jesus Christ wanted to do this also. Except, the people formulating this global unification want to be in charge and not Christ. There are people of great power and wealth who seek to build Utopia and not Zion. And there are very many well-meaning people who have good intentions and hope for a great future potential good in this plan. Unfortunately, their hope in a right end tends to justify much wrong along the way.

How this global unification will come about is by driving wedges between people, and creating all sorts of factions, religions, classes, peoples, political ideologies, cultures and counter cultures. Mistrust and contention between groups will lead to war. In contrast to conflict and contention, a global unification will promise peace. So, our contention, mistrust, and anger among ourselves empowers globalists to take control. They will tell us how religion has failed us, and only through their vision has true peace been realized.

But those who put their faith in Christ, and are called, chosen and faithful know how the story will really end and that this secret combination will fail, and Christ alone will reign upon the Earth as King of kings and Lord of lords.

Ether 8:22-25 And whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not. Wherefore, O ye Gentiles, it is wisdom in God that these things should be shown unto you, that thereby ye may repent of your sins, and suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain—. . . For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people,

D&C 87: 6 And thus, with the asword and by bloodshed the inhabitants of the earth shall bmourn; and with famine, and plague, and earthquake, and the thunder of heaven, and the fierce and vivid lightning also, shall the inhabitants of the earth be made to feel the wrath, and indignation, and chastening hand of an Almighty God, until the consumption decreed hath made a full end of all nations;

Jer 30: 11 For I am with thee, saith the Lord, to save thee: though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee: but I will correct thee in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished.

"We are on the verge of a global transformation. All we need is the right major crisis and the nations will accept the New World Order." -David Rockefeller

“For more than a century ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents such as my encounter with Castro to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as "internationalists" and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure - one world, if you will. If that's the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it." - David Rockefeller “Memoirs” 2002, p405

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

OT vs. NT Temple

A friend of mine was questioning the purpose of the LDS Temple. To him, believing in Jesus Christ should be enough without needing anything else for salvation. For my friend, if Christ is our only mediator with God the Father, then what purpose is a temple?

In response, I told him he was being too concrete about the NT temple ceremony. Christ said he would reveal the mysteries of the kingdom in parables. Consequently, being concrete about the temple demonstrates how you easily many look past the spiritual significance and meaning behind the ritual.

According to Acts 2, the temple as well the Lords Supper remained a central part of Early Christian worship. In fact, Acts 2:44-47 says that it is a benefit of temple attendance and regular observance of the Lord's Supper that empowers the Early Christian Saints in their ability to eat their meat with gladness, and singleness of heart, praise God, find favour with all the people, and add to the church daily. After the temple was destroyed in AD 79, we see the church begin to go into decline and Apostasy. How can I prove the Apostasy? We no longer live with all things in common. The covenant of consecration/sanctification is the NT temple covenant that Christ revealed to the rich young man when He said, "If thou wilt be perfect, sell all that thou hast, give to the poor, and come and follow me." The Story of communalism is the story of Thanksgiving and also big part of the Early days of the LDS Church.

Acts 2:44-47 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.

Yes, Joseph Smith did borrow or was inspired by a few elements of the Masonic Ritual. He was impressed by how the ritual symbolism placed the most educated and uneducated on an equal level. The man plowing the field could learn truth along with the most educated.

The endowment ceremony is represented in scripture in other forms such as the vision of Lehi/Nephi, the vision of Moses, King Benjamin's speech, and Christ's covenant people speech among others. The symbol and ritual used may be different, but what is being taught is the same.

But most make the mistake of thinking that Masonic and LDS ritual teach the same thing. They do not. Equating them other than superficially would be like saying a powerpoint presentation on Biology was teaching the same thing as a powerpoint on Art History.

In the OT temple, only the high priest representing Christ was able to pass through the veil once a year. That priest dressed in white and passed through a thick 3-4 inch veil with embroidered angels representing the angels who guard the way of the tree of life.

In the NT temple, the veil is thin and almost see through. The veil has perforations which allow people to pass representing the torn veil at Christ's death. FYI, the Bible said the veil was torn, it does not say the veil fell down as it was hanging up like a curtain.

A person representing Jesus Christ is the only one that stands on the other side of the veil representing that Christ has been the only one who was able to pass through the veil. The true believers are washed, anointed, and clothed in white clothing (sanctification) as the OT high priest, and they are brought through the veil by Christ who was the first. The other assistants at the veil on our side of the veil represent the embroidered angels who stand in the way of the tree of life. Except now they help us and present us at the veil instead of impede our access to it.

But it is only Christ alone that has bridged the gulf between God the Father and Man that brings us through the veil into the presence of the Father.

Other Notes

Many Evangelicals rejection of priesthood, church organization, and gifts of God come down to a reactionary response and rejection of the authority of the Roman Catholic Church. Because they do not accept Papal authority, they interpret the Bible to say anything having to do with hierarchy, authority, and gifts has been done away. This includes the temple.

Acts 2:44-47 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, praising God, and having favour with all
the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.

The Bible contains many details about the temple such as the OT veil was 4in thick with embroidered seriphs representing the angels who guard the way of the tree of life after the Fall 0f Adam and Eve.

We know the temple will be rebuilt but in the Last Days unto every nation, kindred, tongue, and people instead of only one nation, kindred, tongue and people.

The NT veil is white, thin, and has partitions representing the torn veil and that the atonement of Christ has bridged the chasm between God and man. Now all Gods children can become sanctified and pass through the veil and past the angels into the presence of God and partake of the tree of life.

Remember Rev 1-3 and the promises of John to those that have have overcome the world have have not themselves been overcome: they are promised to be made kings and priests unto God, to eat of the tree of life, to be given "hidden manna", to be given a new name, and to be blessed to sit with Christ in His throne with Him. These promises are realized in the NT Temple.

In the OT temple the priests wore multicolored robes and undergarments and only the high priest once a year was permitted to be washed and annointed to pass into the holie of holies. Now through Christ and the higher covenant, all of Gods children are blessed to wear white robes, and pass through the veil into Gods presence through Christ.

John asks who are all these people dressed in white robes. The angel said, these are they who have sanctified themselves and washed their garments white in the blood of the lamb and serve day and night in His temple.

The veil doesn't separate. There are partitions. But obviously, you aren't in the presence of the Father at this moment. The temple symbolically represents the promise and process of actuually entering into heaven into the presence of the Father.
You are being too concrete. The temple is a parable. The veil represents the actual reality that you and I are not in heaven with the Father right now. A person representing the Lord Jesus Christ at the veil represents that only Jesus Christ can bring us through the veil into the presence of God.

1. Christ said he would reveal the mysteries of the kingdom in parables is the wicked would not understand them because they don't pay enough attention to the meaning behind the story. The LDS temple is a parable. 1. Matt 13:11. Luke 8:10

2. You are not literally in heaven seeing the Father in the flesh with your natural eyes. So, therefore there is a veil present currently in this sense.

3. The person at the veil represents the Lord Jesus Christ at the veil at the Final Judgement. What happens is all symbolic. Don't get so concrete about it. The symbolic meaning of what is happening is what is important over the concrete symbols themselves.

You miss the whole point of the OT temple. The shortcoming of the OT temple was that only one person per year was able to pass into the Holy of Holies.

Now in the NT temple everyone can be washed and annointed, dressed in white priesthood robes like the priests and be brought through the veil by Christ who was the first, and who tore the veil to make a way for the rest of us to pass through.

Remember Paul said the Levitical Priesthood had not the power to make one perfect else why would another priest arise after the Order of Melchesidek. Ie Christ.

Therefore Christ was the first to pass into the presence of the Father and has made a way for the rest of us to become sanctified and pass as He has done.

As far as the oaths associated with the temple covenants, they were a reminder of the example of Annanias and Sopphira who broke the higher covenant of sanctification/consecration by withholding a portion and were struck dead by God. That's kind of a OT thing for God to do in Acts. But this part of the older temple ritual just reminds us of the spiritual consequences of breaking our covenants. Again these are just ritual symbolism teaching something symbolically.

Joseph Smith confessed he was impressed by the Masonic ritual and how it taught abstract truth using ritual symbolism to the learned and refined as well as the unlearned and illiterate. So, yes Joseph Smith felt inspired to barrow the system the same way your preacher may give a lecture using Microsoft Powerpoint. If you were to see a lecture on Biology and History, you may assume the same thing was being taught if you only focused in the laser pointer dark room and slides. Conversely, the message of the Masonic ritual and the LDS temple is totally different.

The LDS temple is about Jesus Christ and tells the story of creation, fall, our separation from God and the Tree of Life, and the plan of salvation by which through Christs atonement we can receive the higher covenant and become prepared and sanctified, to again enter I to the presence of the Father through Christ. Realizing Gods love for you through His plan gives you an eternal perspective that empowers that person to resist sin better.

The message of the Masonic ritual is about Hyrim Abiff and becoming a better man, citizen by learning about Gods charactistics as a creator, how God brings order to chaos, and by contemplating ones death to acheive a higher perspective.

Christ stands at the veil and makes us worthy. Those who follow Christ are washed and anointed and clothed in beautiful white robes. We are then brought through the partitioned veil by Christ. Again, the temple is a parable, don't get too concrete about it. It's symbolically teaching this.

How welcome are the poor, the fatherless and the widow without means to travel around the world to the temple. In the Last Days, the NT Temple is being made available to all people, nations kindreds and tongues, and even the poor, fatherless, widows, etc. Everyone is invited and if they have faith in Christ, He will empower anyone to forsake the sins listed in 1 Cor 5

Paul says is any man be called a brother who is guilty of: Fornication, Covetness, Idolatry, Railing, Drunkenness, Extortion

These should receive correction, disipline and assistance by the Church or be cast out. False religion speaks nothing of these sins and continues to serve the flesh and blood of the Lords Supper to those who are unworthy or unrepentant.

This sin is called priestcraft, or gainsaying and is represented by Aaron who took the gold of the Israelites and made them a false God so they could defile themselves.

The OT Temple was given to one nation=Israel
The OT Temple was given to one kindred=Abraham,Isaac, Jacob
The OT Temple was given to one tongue=Hebrew
The OT Temple was given to one people=Israelites
John saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven with the seal of God and everlasting gospel to give to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people.

The NT Temple is given to All Nations
The NT Temple is given to All Kindreds
The NT Temple is given to All Tongues
The NT Temple is given to All Peoples

and the Last shall be first and the first shall be Last. After the NT temple has been built to all nations, it will finally be rebuilt in Jerusalem to the Jews.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Have ye inquired of the Lord?

2 Tim. 3: 7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Paul foretold that in the Last Days men's hearts would wax cold, and that they would be ever learning, but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. In modern western culture, we pride ourselves on our great institutions of learning and in the way we educate and become educated. But, according to Paul in the Bible, Paul didn't have such laudatory praise for our modern learning. That said, Paul doesn't give more detail about what it is about our modern learning that fails.

That is when the Christian can turn to the Book of Mormon for some further clarification and explanation of how God would have us learn and teach. 1 Nephi 15 describes the occasion after Nephi is shown a vision of God similar to that shown to his Father. In addition to the profound prophecy in the vision which foretells the coming of the Messiah, the account is instructive afterwards in how Nephi describes his interaction with his brothers.

After Lehi had shared the vision with his family, several sons, namely Laman and Lemuel, began arguing and debating among themselves about what the vision could mean. Nephi on the other hand took an entirely different approach.

1 Ne. 15: 1 And it came to pass that after I, Nephi, had been carried away in the spirit, and seen all these things, I returned to the tent of my father. 2 And it came to pass that I beheld my brethren, and they were disputing one with another concerning the things which my father had spoken unto them.. . . 8 And I said unto them: Have ye inquired of the Lord?. . . 11 Do ye not remember the things which the Lord hath said?—If ye will not harden your hearts, and ask me in bfaith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you.

Today, world problems are disputed over and debated ad nauseum without arrival at substantive solutions presented or conclusions made. It seems every opinion is presented on equal grounds and no tools are given to weigh the value of each option. But, according to Nephi, the endless debating and disputinig is one main way by which we today are ever learning but never quite able to arrive at the truth. According to Nephi, we as a society need to turn the the Lord Jesus Christ in prayer for answers.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Borne Upon Eagles’ Wings

Ex. 19: 4 Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles’ wings, and brought you unto myself.
Isa. 40: 31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

I believe that all little children who have not arrived at the age of accountability are innocent of sin and are alive in Christ. However, the Bible teaches that Adam fell and consequently all men need saving. Therefore, using this analogy, I think it can be said that coming into a fallen world from the presence of God is like falling off a cliff into a free fall with the ground (death and hell) accelerating towards us with each passing moment. Ignorant or not, gravity is in operation and the consequences of the fall are imminent.

Alma 34: 9 For it is expedient that an atonement should be made; for according to the great plan of the Eternal God there must be an atonement made, or else all mankind must unavoidably perish; yea, all are hardened; yea, all are fallen and are lost, and must perish except it be through the atonement which it is expedient should be made.

But the Bible says the there is Hope in Christ. That by the Grace of Christ we can be initially saved and rescued by faith alone. The Bible says that no one commeth unto the Son save the Father draweth Him. Therefore the Father reaches down to rescue us from our fall and the impending impact. God promises that eventually all men will be drawn unto Christ. But while all men will eventually accept the saving embrace of Christ, some will later turn away. Christ says none will be lost save the Sons of Perdition.

John 12:32 "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me"
John 6: 44. "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day"
John 6: 39 "And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day."
John 17: 12 "While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled."

Rom 14:10-12 But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

Before God reached down to offer us rescue, we were not free. We had no agency and no choice. But God says that The Father lifted up the Son on the Cross to draw "all men" unto Christ. So, nothing we could do caused God to reach down towards us but His loving kindness and infinite mercy. But after being given a choice (impact or rescue), we then are free to choose at that point. Moral agency requires: 1. free will, 2. knowledge of good and evil, 3. enticement by good and evil 4. Atonement of Christ.

After accepting rescue, we are borne up as if on eagles wings. God gives us a set of wings and the first thing we learn to do is stop the fall and maintain altitude. The is termed Justification. But after our drop in altitude has ceased, is everything done?

2 Ne. 31: 19-20 And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save. Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of bhope, and a clove of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

No, not everything is done after being rescued and justified. We still have fallen a long way, some more than others. So, Christ promises to empower us and teach us to use the wings we have been given to gain altitude.. Some people might say, Wow, Im sure glad I was rescued before hitting the ground, but gee, that is a long way back up there to the top of the cliff. Maybe instead of allowing Christ (wings) to empower by assent back to the top of the cliff, maybe ill just settle for one of these lesser perches and outcroppings. The one there looks like a nice comfortable spot.

Using wings that we have been given determines the degree of Sanctification we allow Christ to do in us. Christ said that none which the Father have given Him will be lost, except the Sons of Perdition, but again although we are saved from hitting the ground, this is no guarantee that we will necessarily get back all the way from where we have fallen and receive the same gift/reward/mansion/glory/kingdom/world/seat/crown. But if we will give our whole will: heart, might, mind and strength to God, then Christ will sanctify, perfect, and exalt us and carry us back to the very top again.