Thursday, November 28, 2013

2 Chronicles 7:14

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (Old Testament, 2 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles 7:14)

I want to call attention to a sermon by Jonathan Kahn at the last Presidential Inaugural Prayer Breakfast.  Rabbi Kahn called America to repentance, called us to return to the God of the Bible and called us to a return to virtue.  Rabbi Kahn also restated the covenant over this land that is found in the Book of Mormon that only inasmuch as we would serve and obey God we would prosper.

This post is not necessarily an endorsement of Jonathan Kahn or his best-selling book "The Harbinger". I think the signs and numerology in the book may give a false impression of how God operates. Also, that certain events were accidental.

The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: the sycomores are cut down, but we will change them into cedars. (Old Testament, Isaiah, Isaiah 9:10)

I do agree with Rabbi Kahn that Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle could have been more careful when he choose to quote the Bible in his 9/11 speech.  Isaiah's words actually were spoken in condemnation of Ephraim.  Isaiah was saying that Ephraim, even after being afflicted, would saying these words in the pride of their heart.

For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the Lord of hosts. (Old Testament, Isaiah, Isaiah 9:13) (Tom Daschle quotes Isa 9:10) (John Edwards quotes Isa 9:10) (Pres. Obama says "we will rebuild")

So, what is Rabbi Kahn's book about? Kahn recounts Assyria's attack on the land of Napthali as a warning to Ephraim of future destruction.  Kahn draws a parallel between this Biblical warning and 9/11 foreshadowing a future destruction to America.

Kahn says he was drawn to this conclusion when several American politicians began quoting Isa. 9:10 with regard to 9/11 rebuilding projects.  But in addition to quoting scripture, the people rebuilding the "one world tower" symbolically laid hewn granite stone as the cornerstone and foundation of the  rebuilt "freedom tower".  

Additionally, there is the sycomore-cedar issue.  St. Paul's Chapel is the site where, after George Washington gave his inaugural address from Federal Hall in Manhattan, he led Congress in prayer at St. Paul's chapel dedicating this country to the service of God. St. Paul's Chapel is across the street from the WTC but was protected from the building collapse by a sycamore (buttonwood) tree.  The tree's roots have been bronzed and are on display in memorial to 9/11.  But in addition, cedar trees were planted in the place of the sycamore.

There is some more significance to the sycamore tree.  In the Bible, the sycamore refers to a fig tree. In America, the sycamore refers to a fruitless buttonwood tree. May 17, 1792, the Buttonwood agreement started the New York Stock Exchange and in July 1944, the Bretton-Woods agreement established the US Dollar as the world reserve currency.  Remember the cursing of the fruitless fig tree in Matt 21 and Mark 11.

Kahn concludes that the defiant rebuilding without repenting and returning to the God of America and a return to virtue will bring a great curse and future  destruction upon America.  Kahn says the historically low interest rates following 9/11 brought about the housing bubble and collapse 7 years later in 2008. Other actions in response to 9/11 may also likewise come back on us (e.g. Patriot Act, War on Terror, etc).

What Kahn doesn't seem to realize the possibility that any of these events could have been purposefully carried out. While I do think the preservation of St. Paul's Chapel is miraculous, I don't think people mock God by accident. Kahn seems to assume that people were putting Isa 9:10 in speeches, laying hewn stone and planting cedars without realizing the message of defiance they were communicating.
(summary: "Harbinger")

I do agree with Rabbi Kahn that everything the US has done to protect herself following 9/11 which was done instead of repenting has and will bring upon America a backlash.  In other words, instead of fixing the problems in our nation through repentance, we have just dug our own pitt 10 times deeper.

That said, I hope Kahn's book and speeches do more than just call attention to the mocking of God. I hope that people instead feel more inspired to repentance.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Agency: Acting vs. Being Acted Upon

The following comes from a vblog by Brent Larson (link below). 

I have written several posts on agency which explain that agency, freedom, or liberty has nothing to do with "doing whatever you want".  In exploring the true meaning of agency as expressed in the Book of Mormon, Bible and Doctrine and Covenants, I appreciate some great points expressed by Bent Larson.

Bro. Larson makes a few great points about being free to choose.  If humankind allows himself to just react and behave according to his carnal appetites and passions, those reactions will inalterably lead to bondage, captivity, and death.  Being controlled by our genetic and carnal nature is the default setting. If we do nothing, humankind is inalterably bound to the consequences  of captivity and death.  So, both inaction and reaction lead into bondage.

If instead, humankind uses his agency to choose liberty and eternal life, then we must use our agency and choose to bind ourselves to the laws of virtue that lead inalterably to liberty and eternal life.  Brent says the true choice is between choosing the end result of liberty vs. choosing the immediate reactions of sin that lead to captivity.

I like Bent's point here that Satan makes it sound like keeping the commandments of God equals captivity.  So many people are led to falsely believe that the commandments are self-limiting and closeminded.   In reality, keeping God's commamdments is the only path to true eternal freedom.

Satan also likes to tell people that the Atonement of Christ makes it possible for people to sin and follow their carnal natures and still have eternal life.  However the scriptures warn us again and again that "wickedness never was  happiness", "we reap what we sow", and the Christ came to "save us from our sins and not in our sins".   

The truth is that the atonement of Christ doesn't ignore or bypass justice but brings us back to the start where we must be born again, repent, choose the path of virtue that leads to eternal life.  Then God says he is 'bound when we do what he says.  But if we do not what he says, we have no promise.'

Elder Bednar challenged everyone to read the Book of Mormon and discuss with our children how we can act and be agents and not be acted upon.  Those who choose liberty and eternal life will look to voluntarily bind, commit, and covenant themselves to virtue and the commandments of God.  

What makes humankind greater than the aminals is our agency. We are not helplessly subject to our appetites, passions and genetics.  Humans can feel hunger and choose to fast and we can be offended and choose to forgive.

Choosing God and submitting our will to God as Christ did, we are promised that our ability to do good and be good will be magnified.   Charity is the pure love of Christ -- for the Father.  And because Christ's choice of complete submission to the Father's will; Christ was empowered to do more (atonement) and be better (be perfect) than any other person.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Agency of Man

I agree. Agency does not equal "do whatever you want". Lehi teaches we "could not act for ourselves" (agents) unless we are enticed by one or the other. It is Satan's doctrine "do as you will" and the Lord's doctrine "not as I will but as thou wilt". 

In reality, man only becomes free by submitting to the will of God in all things. That is the great paradox. We become free by submission because only God can bestow His creative powers on others. Satan has no creative powers and can only steal, corrupt and enslave. God's people can rule over their own creation.

Since the appetites and passions of the flesh never take a vacation, man would have been a slave to the natural savage nature without the commandments of God. This is how the commandments of God make us free. Without God's commandments we would just be left slaves to our own carnal nature and to Satan. 

Even in the garden, the commandments given to Adam is what made Adam free. Before that he would have just hung out with no choices for good or bad. But this life is meant for us to show and to prove to ourselves who we will serve, who we will choose to love and what we are made of.

In life we choose to whom we will serve. Some will serve the devil. Some will serve the flesh and their own hedonistic appetites. And some will choose to serve God.

Thanks to the commandments of God, man has a choice and now knows what to do to demonstrate his choosing God.

Satan's plan was given by Korihor. Korihor reveled that it was Satan's plan to do away with right and wrong and live under the law of the jungle where "every man faired according to the management of the creature" and "conquered according to his strength". 

Under Satan's system there is only room for one at the top who could possibly do as they will in all things where they rule by fear, lies, deceit, force, leverage, intimidation, ruthlessness and coercion etc. 

In the animal kingdom there is no sin for an animal to behave like an animal. But animals are not agents and are controlled by their appetites and passions. 

Mankind is above the animals. What makes man human is we have power over the flesh. We can choose to fast when hungry. We can choose to forgive when offended.

Submitting to the will of God = Charity.  Doing whatever you want = Pride.  Pride is the opposite of Charity.  Christ was good and did good more than any other man because He loved the Father and submitted Himself to the Father more than any man.  The pure love of Christ was His love for and submission to the will of the Father.  The Father then empowered and magnified Christ's ability to be good and to do good.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Anxiously/Actively Engaged

I work in an Emergency Room.  There are all types of people that come and go. At some point I noticed that my smartphone was missing.  I didn't immediate think it was stolen but rather I had left it in the car or at home. After my shift and after searching my car and at home I realized that phone may not be lost but may have been picked up by someone.

Most Smartphones have a locator service. I used that service to discover the exact address and location of my phone.  I remotely locked my phone and then contacted my phone provider and obtained a list of numbers that had been made from the phone since it went missing.

I then filed a police report and called my friend who is an investigator with the county sherriff's office.  I talked with the investigator and asked if he wouldn't mind to go over and pick uo the phone for me. 

Lastly, I knelt in prayer with my family and we prayed that God would help me get my phone back.  The issue wasn't that I couldn't afford another or that there was  important information on it-- there wasn't.  It was more or a convenience thing and about the person with the phone shouldn't have it. 

My point in telling this story is that I doubted when I made the police report if a deputy would waste their time going after something as insignificant as a smartphone.  However, a great investigator took my information.  I texted him a screenshot of the map showing the  exact location of the device, and in less than an hour I had my phone back.

I didn't press any charges because it is possible I dropped the phone rather than it being taken.  However, I checked witg my Brother-in-law lawyer who informed me that Georgia has no "finders-keepers" law.  If you find something that is not yours,  If you take possession, you must be actively engaged in trying to return it to its rightful owner. 

I believe I was successful in getting my phone back because of prayer, because of the excellent professional help of Investigator Howell, but also because I did all I could on my end to find out where my phone was and who had it before turning the job over to someone else to go and retrieve it.

In fact, Public Safety was pretty much constrained to help me at this point because it came down to the issue of me going to the address and confronting this individual or allowing them to do it.  I even asked the person making the police report if she recommended I just confront this person myself or allow Public Safety  to assist.

23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do. (Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi, 2 Nephi 25)

I think there is a true principle here that all applies to our discipleship of Christ and our eternal salvation.  That principle is summed up in the Book of Mormon when it says we are "saved by grace after all we can do".  But is this saying we can contribute one iota to our own salvation without God?  No!  Here Nephi was explaining why they bothered to observe the Law of Moses knowing that true salvation was in Christ alone and not the Law.  Nephi was simply saying, Christ gave us the Law, so, we will observe it until Christ tells us to do something else.

21 Or do ye suppose that the Lord will still deliver us, while we sit upon our thrones and do not make use of the means which the Lord has provided for us? (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 60)

In this scripture Captain Moroni is explaining to the Chief Judge Pahoran the conditions of deliverance which are identical to the conditions of salvation. Captain Moroni says that we can only hope for the Lord's help only if we have first, "made use of the means which the Lord has (already) provided for us.".  So, this is not saying we meet God half-way or we can somehow contribute without God to our own salvation.  What Moroni and Nephi are saying is that God has aleady given us grace and means and He expects us to make full use of those gifts and means before asking for seconds.

I really find this principle displayed in medicine with the patient's I see.  It is so much better when a patient is actively engaged in their own health care, healing and well-being instead of taking little or no thought or action in trying to help themselves.   

Saturday, November 09, 2013

My Motivation

I printed out my blog 3 years ago.  It made for quite a stack of paper back then.  I'm sure it would make an even more impressive stack today, especially considering that most of the posts have been pecked out on my iphone.  So, why am I doing this blog and the other at "brainbender"?   

My motivations are several.  1. Elder Ballard encouraged LDS to be active online.  2. I'm an ED physician and work irregular hours and blogging is a much spiritually safer and uplifting activity than gaming or watching TV or whatever else I could be doing in the middle of the night. 3. After writing my Master's thesis I discovered that the power of discovery in the writing process. I discovered that writing is an integral part of the process of thinking and pondering and "studying it out" in the mind. 4. I'm proud to consider myself a total nerd (not a geek) that loves ideas. Ideas are like friends that I enjoy visiting and revisiting. 5. Ideas can change and ultimately save the world. 6. Maybe some ideas here may be of use and benefit to someone else.  7.  I don't take this blog that seriously, the blogosphere is so large, my blogs are pretty much hidden in an ocean of online content. 8.  I like to keep notes online so I can refer back to them (revisit old friends). 8. I absolutely seek never to criticize any decision, doctrine or officer of the LDS Church.  9. Other then my testimony, I am always willing and open to learn, evolve, rephrase, and clarify my views and opinions. 10. I think this blog has been a small and simple thing that has helped me in my personal scripture study, to stay close to the the Spirit of the Lord, and maybe to experience a bit of the administering of angels.

5 And now, as the preaching of the word had a great tendency to lead the people to do that which was just—yea, it had had more powerful effect upon the minds of the people than the sword, or anything else, which had happened unto them—therefore Alma thought it was expedient that they should try the virtue of the word of God. (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 31)

Pre-existence vs. Reincarnation

1. It is important that we DO believe in a pre -mortal existence where we lived in the presence of God because, unlike mainstream Christianity,  we need to realize that just making it to heaven is not the ultimate goal.  If we started out in heaven with God, from the start, then the design is to not just return but to return better than we left.  The infinite reward makes risking hell worth it.

2. It is important that we DO NOT believe in multiple lives or reincarnation because we must understand that "the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors". We can't procrastinate and get serious on the next "go'round."

32 For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors. (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 34)

3. While we DO believe this stage of mortality is our great and final exam, and there are NO second or third chances to "have-a-go" at mortality, how is eternity still described as "one eternal round?" What is it that "goes around"? 

The thing that "goes around" in the universe is the new spirits that are prepared to come to an Earth and have a mortal/physical experience. During this experience, spirits must learn or are tested in 3 areas: 1. will they love and serve God over Satan. 2. will their spirit master and control their body or will they instead be controlled by their appetites and even genetics (natural man). 3. will they humble themselves and submit/consecrate to God's earthly priesthood authority. (this attitude = charity, opposite = pride)

The love of Christ was His absolute submission of His will to the Father. And because of Christ's submission to the Father, Christ was motivated and empowered to do more for His fellow-man than by Himself.  

Anyone who renders service to others will tell you they will do more for others out of a love for God then they would for the person themselves because they can know God better than they may know their neighbor on their own. Our love is limited by our NOT knowing.  But we can know God, and God knows our neighbor.

The reason Why it is critical to learn these lessons NOW during this lifetime is because you cannot learn these lessons later. And if you have not or did not learn these 3 lessons in life, we cannot teach these lessons to future generations of spirits who will come to their Earth and have their "go'round". We won't be able to give future spirits their "first lessons". Those who never figure out mortality won't be enabled to teach "mortality prep".

[Faith is the attitude and action of obedience and sacrifice to God putting off immediate gratification for future eternal blessings and reward.  The opposite is doubt. Earthly faith is the motivation of a bird that begin's dutifully collecting twigs to construct the nest it can picture in its mind's eye.  Spiritual faith is acting based on the heavenly vision we receive by the Holy Spirit.  This is the "eye of Faith".

Through our faith we have an assurance of eternal reward and will be motivated by hope and not fear that we are missing out on the fun.  Those with a perfect brightness of hope do not fear death, or scarcity or time or resources.  However, they do prepare beforehand for every needful thing and are self-reliant.

Charity is our complete submission to God and God's priesthood authority.  The evidence of this is our works as  those with charity will selflessly do more for others than without that submission because we know God and God knows our neighbor better than we can know them and love them on our own. The opposite attitude is pride or "don't tell me what to do ". 

Many follow the god in their heart because unlike a living prophet or local bishop, the god in your heart likely will not make as many demands of you.  Truely, God can be in our hearts.  But If the god in your heart is not asking 100%, he is not the right god.  The True God expects everything.]

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Sherem and the Unpardonable Sin

When I started this blog, there were certain topics I have tried to avoid.  However, this came up and I think it is important to comment on.

Blood Atonement.
It is facinating how people left to themselves to ponder the eternities and their relationship with God immediately begin to feel a huge sense of unworthiness and inadequacy and fear.  All men are fallen and sinful and fall short of the holiness and perfection of God.  These existential feelings of fear are so powerful that most people spend most of their time busily working, recreating, listening to music, or taking mind-altering substances just to drown out these thoughts and fears.

It is interesting over the ages how Satan has used this feeling of unworthiness before God to control man and justify great sin.  I am not sure why we believe blood can fix and atone and cover our nakedness  before God.  We see that in ages past civilizations have sacrificed infants and virgins to appease their gods. 

Other cultures have been promised forgiveness of sins by going to war and shedding blood like the muslim conquest or the Catholic crusades.  In more modern times, our gods may be wealth, prosperity or even safety and we are convinced to be blessed  by these gods requires we target and exterminate certain groups. All these are examples of "blood atonement" where man is fooled into thinking shedding blood will secure the blessings of heaven. 

Inspiring how the infinite Atonement of Christ ends all this shedding of blood. No more do we have to sacrifice animals or people in an attempt to feel at one with deity.  All we have to do is accept the infinite and last sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Only the blood of Jesus Christ will wash away our sins and cover our nakedness and unworthiness before God.  Only through the teachings of Jesus Christ and His Atonement can man find true peace, happiness, prosperity and safety.

Radio Interview

Ted Shoebat was on Dr. Stanley Monteith's  "Radio Liberty" talking about what he believed were evils of some of the early teachings and tradition of the Muslim religion.  Mr. Shoebat focused on the foundational idea (in his opinion) that some early Muslims believed they could gain salvation by shedding the blood of Christians or others considered "Infidel"(symbolism of the Red Fez).  Mr. Shoebat claimed that that these historic actions were a manifestation of a belief in "blood atonement."

His point was that while most Muslims do not believe that today, according to Shoebat, there may exist a core religious theology based on human sacrifice to appease Allah. Because Islam rejects the infinite atonement and blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ, atonement for a Muslim may take on a different form.  While Modern Islam has been moderated and muted by its interaction with the West; if left to itself or supported by the West (like in Syria), Mr. Shoebat feared  Islam would revert back to its more radical roots.

But then Mr. Shoebat then made direct parallels with Mormonism and said that Mormons. "like all cults," also believe in blood Atonement according to the foundational teachings of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young in our Journal of Discourses.  He then said, the Mormon faith has also been "moderated" but if left to itself would also revert back to its more radicalized form involving some form of human blood sacrifice. 

I would point Dr. Stan to the FairLDS article on this subject:
First, the ideas Mr. Shoebat puts forth are absolutely false because Joseph Smith, Brigham Young and every LDS to the present accepts the infinite sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Second. Most Bible-believing Christians recognize that their Bible teaches 1. the existence of unpardonable sins and 2.  The justification of legal Capital punishment by the State for murder.  

The idea here I think Brigham Young was trying to convey is that if a murderer were truly repentant, and recognized that the State called for capital punishment as punishment for his sin, he might confess and voluntary submit to the punishment if there was some slight hope of forgiveness.  

Brigham Young's words were never justifying the LDS Church authority to take life.  It was talking about conditions whereby a murderer may voluntarily confess and then submit to the State's punishment like Sherem in the Book of Mormon.  This is in contrast to the lengthy current process of numerous appeals before capital punishment is carried out by the State.  

Who is Sherem in the Book of Mormon? Sherem was a popular figure among the Nephites who challenged and criticized the American prophet Jacob for encouraging the people to look forward to the coming of Jesus Christ. Sherem criticized Jacob from straying from the Law of Moses and for thinking he could know things in the future. Sherem didn't keep his opinions to himself but made his criticisms of Jacob very public.  At one point Sherem engages and challenges Jacob for believing in Christ and asks for a sign. After being overcome by God for several days, Jacob revives only to confess his sins for dening Christ and lying to God and then "gives up the ghost".  Sherem in the Book of Mormon gave a full confession of his sins and voluntarily submitted to the law fearing he had committed an "unpardonable sin".

Brigham Young never taught that Capital Punishment fell under the jurisdiction of the the Church and especially not for apostasy.  The Book of Mormon clearly teaches there should never be a law against a man's belief.  Apostasy was never grounds for capital punishment. Those of all religions and even former-LDS-turned-critic have always lived and will always live freely among the LDS. 

Nevertheless, they durst not lie, if it were known, for fear of the law, for liars were punished; therefore they pretended to preach according to their belief; and now the law could have no power on any man for his belief. (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 1:17)

Now there was no law against a man’s belief; for it was strictly contrary to the commands of God that there should be a law which should bring men on to unequal grounds. (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 30:7)

I think LDS should appreciate why Satan attacks the LDS Church on the ideas that Brigham Young was talking about and the example of Sherem in the Book of Mormon.  

Many people who are part of the Great Satanic Conspiracy get fooled into being initiated and taking the Mark of the Beast. They go in trying to convince themselves that Satan is not real. All they focus on is all the money and power.  However, once on the inside, they feel they have committed the "unpardonable sin". They feel trapped that there is no way out out and that there is no way to be forgiven. So, most just continue on or "Eat, drink and be merry" until the end.  

And behold, others he flattereth away, and telleth them there is no hell; and he saith unto them: I am no devil, for there is none—and thus he whispereth in their ears, until he grasps them with his awful chains, from whence there is no deliverance. (Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi, 2 Nephi 28:22)

Imagine if there was a way to rescue and give hope to insiders such that many insiders would cross over for real, testify and confess of what they have done and seen. (Beware the many fake and false defectors) The confessor would then voluntarily submit to whatever State punishment applied; not necessarily capital. In Sherem's time, under the Law of Moses, many more sins were considered a capital offense than today. Voluntarily submitting to punishment helps us trust the confession.  In a real way, Brigham's Blood Atonement is just teaching the concept of a plea deal.

It is my opinion that Satan hates this idea and it is exactly why he attacks  the LDS Church for it.  Remember how Jacob used the testimony of Sherem to reclaim many who had also been deceived.  Also, this glorious doctrine possibly makes seemingly unpardonable sins pardonable. 

I also think this was part of what was going on when Christ told the thief crucified next to him that "Today shalt thou be with me in paradise."  The malefactor acknowledged his sins, submitted to his punishment and pleaded with the Savior for his soul. 

Part of the purpose of the Book of Mormon is to warn, alert and awake Gentiles to the reality of secret combinations and their consequences. But not only that, the Book of Mormon also contains the keys to put and end to satanic conspiracy and bind Satan forever.

By the way, one of my best friends was born and raised by a Mormon Fundamentalist Polygamist group.  He is now an active Latter-day Saint.  He says that their sect has contributed to keeping the Journal of Discourses in print and the anti-Mormon ideas of Blood Atonement were never taught. Their group never taught taking the life of another was ever justified for any reason except self defense. My friend says that had Blood Atonement, the way Mr. Shoebat describes, been a teaching of Brigham Young, he would have grown up hearing about it.  According to him, there are zero Mormon Fundamentalist groups who teach it.

Other Ideas
Thinking about how people get fooled into following the dark side.  Lucas was correct about fear leading to the dark side.  Also, I think Joel Skousen on youtube describes the conspiracy pyramid well. 

1. There are many of us "useful idiots" who help build up secret combinations and support them because of our ambition and because the system benefits us.  We even become too "invested" to think rationally or critically.   The conspiracy gives a good person a good reason to do something and we naively do it without questioning even if the real reason is evil.

2. There are many who don't think too much about the ethics of it all but follow because they are controlled by drugs, money, power, lust, etc and the conspiracy provides these temporary incentives. 

3. The conspiracy makes necessities and basic freedoms of life scarce, so many go along with the plan out of what they feel is self-preservation.  There is never enough of this or that, so the conspiracy can control people by dealing out benefits, payoffs, bribes, gifts and privileges (king-men).

4. After people have taken bribes and gifts or endulged in incentives, the person has become compromised and can be further controlled by leverage, blackmail, extortion and fear.  In fact the higher you go in the conspiracy ranks the more one has to compromise themselves doing unspeakable acts. These requirements prevent infiltration.

5. Many at the top convince themselves that they are doing good.  People do evil best when they are convinced it is good. People tell themselves the ends justify any means.  The ends of a global government and advanced civilization justify any uncivilized acts to force humanity to that end.  Or that God in a cosmic ying-yang needs the dark side who he will pardon in the end for doing a necessary work and any personal sins along the way will be overlooked (Like Liam Neisen's character in the Dark Night)

Friday, November 01, 2013

The Path of Discipleship

Each of us might well ask, “In what ways am I shrinking or holding back?” Meek introspection may yield some bold insights! For example, we can tell much by what we have already willingly discarded along the pathway of discipleship. It is the only pathway where littering is permissible, even encouraged. In the early stages, the debris left behind includes the grosser sins of commission. Later debris differs; things begin to be discarded which have caused the misuse or underuse of our time and talent. ...

In conclusion, the submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. The many other things we “give,” brothers and sisters, are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us. However, when you and I finally submit ourselves, by letting our individual wills be swallowed up in God’s will, then we are really giving something to Him! It is the only possession which is truly ours to give! Consecration thus constitutes the only unconditional surrender which is also a total victory! May we deeply desire that victory, 

“Swallowed Up in the Will of the Father” Neal A. Maxwell, Ensign, Nov. 1995, 22-24 

O God, Aaron hath told me that there is a God; and if there is a God, and if thou art God, wilt thou make thyself known unto me, and I will give away all my sins to know thee, and that I may be raised from the dead, and be saved at the last day. (Book of Mormon, Alma, Alma 22:18)

21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. (New Testament, Matthew, Matthew 19)