Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Giving a Good Report

When Moses led the House of Isreal out of captivity in Egypt and just before entering into their promised land in Canaan, God sent representatives from each tribe to explore the land of Israel. Instead of reporting back how great the land was and how blessed they were to receive it, 10 of the 12 spies gave bad reports telling Israel that the land was filled with giants and their was no hope that they could ever possess it. Only Joshua of the tribe Ephraim and Caleb of the tribe Judah gave good faithful reports. 

In consequence for the evil reports, God commanded that Moses and the House of Israel wander in the desert for 40 years until that entire generation had died out except for Joshua and Caleb. Joshua and Caleb, on the other hand, upon entering the land were rewarded with their own cities of Timnath Serah and Hebron respectively. 

Are we just as guilty and faithless as the 10 spies who gave evil reports? Satan has ruled over this Earth for 6000 years.  But God has always desired to possess the Earth to be an inheritance for the righteous. Why do the righteous allow the wicked and corrupt ideologies to rule? In many cases the good people just throw up our hands convinced that there is nothing we can do about it. 

The righteous are meant to rule over the Earth and cause that the groves (places of false worship and false ideology) be completely removed. This isn't a militant thing, but a struggle of morality and ideology. Virtue begets morality. Morality begets values. Values beget idealogy. Idealogy begets policy.  And policy begets law. What we need is a return to virtue beginning with observance of the Sabbath Day which will provide the needed perspective to see our way forward on the correct path to greatest happiness.

The same principle applies in our own life.  Have we given up on ourselves?  Have we been fooled into thinking that our sins and weaknesses are giants that cannot be overcome?  God hates this attitude because the consequences become a self-fulfilling prophecy. God cannot help us without faith or hope. If we think there is no hope, we are right, but with God all things are possible.

Virtue = empathy and self-restraint required to do no harm to others.
Golden Rule = treat others how you would want others to treat you.
Morality = principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior.
Values = a person's principles or standards of behavior; one's judgment of what is important in life.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Founding Fathers on Virtue and Religion

John Adams in a speech to the military in 1798 warned his fellow countrymen stating,
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion . . . Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."

Benjamin Rush, Signer of the Declaration of Independence said.
"[T]he only foundation for a useful education in a republic is to be aid in religion. Without this there can be no virtue, and without virtue there can be no liberty, and liberty is the object and life of all republican governments. Without religion, I believe that learning does real mischief to the morals and principles of mankind."

Noah Webster, author of the first American Speller and the first Dictionary said,
"[T]he Christian religion, in its purity, is the basis, or rather the source of all genuine freedom in government. . . . and I am persuaded that no civil government of a republican form can exist and be durable in which the principles of that religion have not a controlling influence."

Gouverneur Morris, Penman and Signer of the Constitution.
"[F]or avoiding the extremes of despotism or anarchy . . . the only ground of hope must be on the morals of the people. I believe that religion is the only solid base of morals and that morals are the only possible support of free governments. [T]herefore education should teach the precepts of religion and the duties of man towards God."

Fisher Ames author of the final wording for the First Amendment wrote,
"[Why] should not the Bible regain the place it once held as a school book? Its morals are pure, its examples captivating and noble. The reverence for the Sacred Book that is thus early impressed lasts long; and probably if not impressed in infancy, never takes firm hold of the mind."

John Jay, Original Chief-Justice of the U. S. Supreme Court,
"The Bible is the best of all books, for it is the word of God and teaches us the way to be happy in this world and in the next. Continue therefore to read it and to regulate your life by its precepts."

James Wilson, Signer of the Constitution; U. S. Supreme Court Justice,
"Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is divine. . . . Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistants. Indeed, these two sciences run into each other."

Noah Webster, author of the first American Speller and the first Dictionary stated,
"The moral principles and precepts contained in the scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws. . . All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible."

Robert Winthrop, Speaker of the U. S. House,
"Men, in a word, must necessarily be controlled either by a power within them or by a power without them; either by the Word of God or by the strong arm of man; either by the Bible or by the bayonet."

Benjamin Franklin, Signer of the Declaration of Independence
"[O]nly a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters."

George Washington, General of the Revolutionary Army, president of the Constitutional Convention, First President of the United States of America, Father of our nation,
"Religion and morality are the essential pillars of civil society."


Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Return to Virtue and Freedom

Roman democracy fell through a series of straightforward steps: 1. secret combinations shipped in drugs and promoted promiscuity (Silk Road and Pompeii), 2. chemical abuse and promiscuity lead to greater poverty (idleness and illegitimacy),  3. Church slacks in its prime responsibility of welfare and virtue.  4. Puppet dictator comes to power promising social justice offering socialism and welfare without virtue or accountability (enables and exploits poor), 5. Demoralized citizens no longer can recognize or resonate with truth. (educating and informing isn't enough) 6. Slow erosion of liberty and freedom, (poor and socialist manipulated to vote away rights) 7. Rome imperialism and expansion necessary to resupply economy with liquidity via perpetual tribute due to a perpetual trade deficit with China.  8. Rome is no longer self-sufficient economically or militarily and was forced to hire barbarians to supply Legion with men.  9. Rome perceived as the "bully" of the world, 10. Roman citizens marginalized Barbarian immigrants, exploiting their labor but never assimilating them into their society. 11.Bankrupt Rome was overthrown and divided by an insurrection of foederati barbarians from within and without. 

In Roman Times, there was the Western Roman Empire with the capital in Rome and the Eastern Roman Empire with the capital in Constantinople.  The elite lived in Venice, Cypress, Malta, Rhodes, Crete (Venetian Black Nobility), controlled trade in the Mediterranean like the Phoenicians before them, and fomented war between the East and West, profiteering on the continual war.

Saving America and Constitutional government can only be achieved by beginning with a return to virtue. John Adams said, "Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."  The king-men who often control and over-through governments via their magicians and advisors who usurp power through promoting sin and poverty and then instituting socialism.  

The US Constitution says that the federal government should "shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof".  Welfare and marriage are 2 major institutions of religion. Welfare and marriage are the business of religion and the Federal Government therefore should not make any laws concerning them whatsoever. Instead, government has taken over marriage and welfare and has, in reality, become its own religious institution. 

Drug abuse should not by itself be illegal. There can be no law about harming yourself.  Addicted persons trapped in patterns of self-abuse need rehab not jail. However, drug distribution is illegal.  The distributer harms the addicted buyer.  The intent of use is tied directly to recreational vs. medicinal form of the chemical substance. This is exactly the legal basis of the 18th Amendment on alcohol prohibition which prohibited distribution of beverage (recreational) alcohol only. 

Same-gender marriage is illegal first because the federal government and especially the federal courts are not to rule on what is a religious institution but also because the difference between civil union and marriage is the right of 2 people to biologically procreate and then responsibility to nurture their offspring. Children have the right to receive a genetic inheritance from a male and female and to be raised by a mother and father who honor their marriage vows. Advanced fertility allowing male-male or female-female offspring  harms that offspring (denies them a full genetic inheritance) as do couples who violate their marriage vows. Same-gender couples should be free to live together and receive all insurance and tax and inheritance benefits of any other couple. But the difference between marriage and civil union is children.

The first step in America's return to virtue is a return to Sabbath observance. This need not even be a religious issue necessarily. Let Muslims observe Friday, Jews and Adventists Saturday, Christians Sunday, and Atheists whatever day they choose.  Let atheists respect nature and devote time to community or environment.  But observing a day of rest, family and community service orients us on what is most important in life and empowers greater self-restraint and disipline and higher humanity in all aspects of life. 

America is blessed above all other nations because of our vast mineral and natural resource wealth and the ease of growing food in the Mississippi River Valley.  This ease of food production led to specialization and technological innovation.  However, techological innovation can then led to gross slothfulness where US citizens are no longer self-sufficient or do much of anything for themselves including procreate.  Will the US become ripe for destruction like so many Empires before it, becoming no more than forgotten chapters in history books. 

The problem of poverty is a threat to our freedom and only religion can effectively answer it through providing welfare together with an expectation of virtuous living. We need to reestablish observance of the Sabbath Day and create a society that once again champions sobriety and chastity.  

Education alone is insufficient to change things in America because truth does not resonate in the corrupt mind. To the demoralized person, truth is silly, offensive and even becomes repulsive. The first and only hope for America is a return to virtue beginning with Sabbath day observance.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Pre-Existence in Ancient Documents

Pre-existence -Compiled From Ancient Documents Compiled By Glen W. Chapman June 1996

"Enoch went to the Lord who taught him all about the creation and his works. He saw matter unorganized before the creation council in Heaven. He saw Satan aspire and get cast out to become the foundation of lower things, beyond which there is great darkness and nothing. And the Lord said 'And now Enoch all that I have explained to thee and all thou has seen on Earth and all thou hast written in thy books. It is my wisdom that I have organized and made all these things and it was by my word that it was carried out,..... And every thing found in the world has been before and has passed before him and has been organized before him ...AII the creations Of the World have existed in each generation before they came to this world. All the souls of the children of men have been before they came down to the world formed before him in Heaven in the very likeness that they have in this world ...For all souls are prepared to eternity before the formation of the world.  And the Angel said to Enoch sit down and write All of the spirits of men and those who have not yet been born yet, the places which have been prepared for them. All things were prepared since before the foundation of the world" 2 Enoch 9:

"Enoch answered the people saying hear my children ,before anything was and before the whole creation took place, the Lord established the age of creation; and after that he made all of the creation both visible and invisible and after that he created man in his own image. He gave him eyes to see, ears to hear and a heart to think with and a mind to council. I swear to you my children that before man was in the womb of his mother we were prepared, each individual and a place for each spirit that each should sojourn here in his proper time, that man might be tested in the balance
..." 2 Enoch 17:

" Enoch went to the Lord who taught him all about creation and his works... He saw matter unorganized before the creation...the council in heaven... He saw Satan aspire and get cast out to become the foundation of lower things, beyond which there ii great darkness and nothing"

2 Enoch 11:

" Then the angel Braboil said: Sit down and write all the spirits of men, all those who have not been born yet, and the places which have been prepared for them. All these things were prepared since before the foundation of the world. And I wrote down all the affairs of men. Secrets of Enoch 10: (Vaillant)

"And everything which is found in this world has been before, and has passed before him and has been arranged [organized] before Him . . . all the creations of the world which have existed in each generation, before they
came into this world, have existed before Him in their true form, even all the souls of the children of man have been before they came down to the world, have all been formed before Him in heaven in the very likeness that they have in this world." Zohar III:61

"When an ancient spirit is about to come down . . . to that region which they call the kingdom of Adam, that Archon who is at the head of the place gives the preexistent soul a cup of forgetfulness..."

Pistis Sophia

"For the worlds exist, so that intelligent spirits might come and inhabit them... There are many mansions, degrees, and worlds, and they all have but one law. If you keep the law you too can become a creator of worlds." 2 Coptic Gnostic Work

"As he left Heaven to come down and undergo his earthly trials, Adam received affectionate farewell embraces from all his faithful children. He put on his physical body and went forth to oppose the primal enemy. Before the creation of this world, the third Sent One (as Adam is called) came into the free space and began to organize this world." Berlin Papyrus 8502

"The world has existed through the ages so that the spirits destined to come here might fulfill their number and destiny and here make their choice between the upper and lower worlds both of which are represented here so that when the bodies the righteous are resurrected they might go to eternal light." Clementine Recognitions III:1

"Peter taught that God's plan or decree was presented in the presence of all the first angels and which laid down an eternal law for everyone in which all spirits and things would be judged and sent to their proper place. ... Pre-existent man had been around along time before it was decided to create
this earth. The whole thing was produced when the time came for his benefit; and though he was created last of all to take it over, in his real nature he is older than any of it. For this reason the world has existed through ages so that the spirits destined to come here might fulfill their number and here make their choice between the upper and lower worlds, both of which are represented here, so that when their bodies are resurrected the blessed might go to eternal light and the unrighteous for their impure acts be wrapped in spiritual flame. In this world every man is given a fair chance
to show his real desires.... God considered all of the evil that would be among those whom he created, but as one who knew there was no other way to achieve the purpose for which they were created, he went ahead. Evil is forced on no one, it is only there for those who want it and by his own free will deliberately subjects himself to it. God could easily wipe them out but he suffers them to carry on till the appointed day in which the deeds of all men shall be judged.....

Now an angel taught Abraham and showed him the resurrection of the dead which was to come and the judgment which is to come with the reward of the good and the punishment of the bad, explaining to him how all things are governed by a just law...." Clementine Recognitions II:23-25,40

Mandaean Writings: the Mandaeans of southern Mesopotamia


"Go down to that place where there is no occupied place, where there is no world, and create for us another world after the fashion of the Sons of Salvation ...

God started out by creating a topos where His children could settle, there to recognize and to serve Him as their Father... Adam., this is the place where you are going to live; your wife Eve will come and Join you here, and here your progeny will thrive... The Father taught me about the worlds of the Lord and the Glory that abides in them. The Adam of light treads upon the earth's trembling foundation which is laid in the midst of the worlds... There is no rivalry or competition among them, but they are glorious in their firmaments, and there is agreement among them, fitting together lik the lashes to the eye. All rejoice in each other, each being more glorious and bright than the other...

'No words can describe Thy power over all Thy worlds...' When beings from different worlds meet, they exchange garments and treasures an identification a sign of mutual esteem. For the creation of endless worlds follows a single pattern -- that laid down by God the creator. The planet say, 'Come Lord of the gods, Lord of the entire cosmos.' (They rejoice and say) 'Come be our head, be the head of our whole world'..

"In the million of worlds that God has made for his sons every world is different from the other and wonderful in its own radiance. Among ten thousand times ten thousand world you will find no two alike. Before this world, there had already been a thousand thousand mysteries and a myriad myriad of planets each with their own mysteries or ordinances. He who has fulfilled all the ordinances and has done good work cannot be held back. We are taught the principles of salvation, so that we cannot be held back in this world... When Adam stood praying for light and knowledge, a helper came to him and gave to him a garment and told him, 'Those men who gave you the garment will assist you throughout your life until you are ready to leave earth.'..

When Adam was created, he was found in a deep sleep, from which he was awakened by the helper who forthwith began to instruct him. And at his death also, the Sent Ones came to take Adam back to the great first Paternal House and to the places in which he formerly dwelt. Second-- when Adam awoke, be faced the light and called for help. The Lord Himself approached him, in glory, and took him by the palm of the right hand instructed him and calmed him and Then he comforted Eve. 'In this way, I have brought joy and aid to his descendants.' The Sent Ones came to bring hope to Adam, who was in, the image of God...

At the creation, God gave orders that the angels should come to keep Adam company. At the beginning, it was the Lord Himself and two companions who instructed Adam and Eve in everything. 'Go down into the world, Adam, and grow up in the body, in that garment which has been assigned to you. Go down and grow up in the ordinances, that the ordinances may be magnified by you, that your progeny may thereby be firmly established. The Man that taught the elect righteous and the Nazoreans, who were to exist upon the earth in the preexistence, said, 'When you beget generations, and when you teach them their knowledge, explain to them, show them, and tell them about the rites which you have performed.' The wholesome things were transplanted from the world above"

The evil spirits, who claim this world for their own, resent the Sent One's instruction. 'These three men are in the world,' they say, 'but they were not really men. They are light and glory, and they have come down to little 'Enosh' [that's physical man -- Adam] who is helpless and alone in the world. They are intruding on our world. The children of men have taken over the earth. They are really strangers who speak the language of the three men. They have accepted the teachings of the three men, and rejected in our own world. They refuse to acknowledge our kingdom and our glory '

Thus, the evil ones plotted to overthrow Adam, who was hoping for Mandadihaya (Teacher of Life), the messenger from the Father, to come-and give him aid and support.  When; Adam called upon God, the Great Spirit sent them from the land. The Lord and two companions taught Adam and Eve all the ordinances and blessed them. 'The Great Light planted us here and gave us helpers who taught us the prayer of Adam in the world.' Three angels were sent to teach Adam and Eve the law of chastity, and to instruct them to be true and faithful when misfortune came upon them, and to dedicate all of their property to the needy and the poor -- the rule which is binding upon all the elect. They were to call upon God without ceasing, in the name of the Son, and not to trust in the things of this world. "

Prayerbook of the Mandaeans

"When Adam was placed on earth, three messengers were sent to oversee him with myself at their head... I taught Adam and Eve the hymns, and the order of prayer, and the ordinances by which would now help one to return to the presence of the Father." In sending three, God says to them, giving them instructions. He said to the pure sent one, His Son, 'Go call Adam and Eve and all their posterity and teach them concerning everything about the
Kingdom of Light and the Worlds of Light. Be friendly with Adam and keep him company, you and the two angels which will be with you. Warn them against Satan; also, teach them chastity'. The helper came and awakened the Lord of Mysteries, who is Adam. For Adam went through all the ordinances, including baptism, washings' and anointings,"

From The Books of Jeu

"In any world as a Yeu becomes a Father in a new world, the Fathers then appoint new Yeus (Jehovahs) for new worlds who in turn will become Fathers. Each Yeu has created for its hosts ten thousand times ten thousand. The farther advanced one is, the faster one moves forward To them that have
shall be given...We are passed on from hand to hand, from degree to degree!! Our example is Adam, who, having been established in Christ and God, next established his son Seth in the second order which was to follow Him on up...

I will teach you all of the ordinances necessary, that you might be purged
by degrees and progress in the next life. These things make it possible for you to achieve other places (other topol), but they must be performed in this life. Unless one performs them here, he cannot become a 'Son of Light'. By very definition, the 'Sons of Light' are those that are perfect in the ordinances...these ordinances are very secret...'Sons of Light' in whatever age they lived, and they receive whatever they desire, they are those upon the right hand of the Father, for it is by their faithfulness in these things that they show they are worthy to return and inherit the kingdom. Without the ordinances, therefore, there is no foothold or foundation to anything in this life... If you want to go to the Father you must pass through the veil.

At this sign the angels move the veil aside and you enter into the presence of the Father who gives you his name and seal ... The world is a system of veils or vestments each a room of the Temple. Man is organized on the same principle. There is a place from which all worlds take their origin and prototype a place of shadowless light and indescribable joy... and there is a veil between the worlds Above the veil are the heavens .The Firmament is equipped with veils and gates that are guarded far removed from the world in which men dwell."

From The Pistis Sophia (Ancient Egyptian Coptic Document)

"There is an appointed place for everything in the Cosmos. There is 'numeristics': there is a numbering of souls for each world and a dispensation is not completed until the teleos-number (completed number) has been fulfilled for that dispensation. Every soul stays in its appointed place until it has fulfilled the task for the topos, for that place... After the plan of creation was accepted, it was communicated to all the other worlds, and they approved and rejoiced... All other worlds look to the same God also to the common Son.... I found an ordinance inscribed upon my garment written in five words. 'It is the garment which belonged to you in the pre-existence, from the beginning, and when your time come on the earth, you will remove it and return home to us.' In this garment, it had the five marks "

From Second Coptic Gnostic Work

"For the world exist, so that intelligent spirits might come and inhabit them... There are many mansions, regions, spaces, heavens degrees, and worlds and they all have but one law. If you keep. that law you too can become a creator of worlds.... Adam, finding himself alone in the dreary world knew that he could not save himself. So he called mightily upon God for a helper. It is because Adam received power to call upon, the holy and perfect name, that be was able to establish the plan of life in the new world."

From Papyrus Berolinensis

"Creation is organization and God is ever bringing order into the universe and He is progressively ever preparing and renewing worlds for the righteous... At the time of the creation, the great thought came to the elements, united with them, spirit joining with matter."

From The Berlin Papyrus 8502

"The first man was the third of the Sent Ones-- the Father, the Son, and Adam...As he left Heaven to come down and undergo his earthly trials, Adam received affectionate farewell embraces from all his faithful children. He put on his physical body and went forth to oppose the primal enemy. Before the creation of this world, the third Sent One (as Adam is called) came into the free space and began to organize this world. "This third Sent One was Christ's great coworker in the Plan of Salvation, but in all things he has precedence.... At their new birth Adam and Eve received the seals and the tokens. As Adam stood praying and supplicating, God sent someone who came. and gave him a greeting of peace (shalom), embraced him, and preached the Gospel to him"

From The Apocryphon of John

"After the physical Adam' was created, a messenger was sent to the head Of
all creations, Adam, and at his call Adam awoke and said, 'How the precious, beautiful life has been planted in this place. But it is hard on me; down here.' Then the Sent One reminded Adam and said, 'But your beautiful throne awaits you, Adam. Why then do you, the image of God, sit here complaining?  All this is being done for your good. I have been sent to teach you, Adam,  and to free you from this world. Listen and return to the light.' Hither a messenger from the house of light was sent to fetch Adam farther when he was ready."

Hugh Nibley on the Book of Enoch 

Gospel of Phil. 132:23. “The veil at first concealed how God controlled the Creation, but when the veil is rent [we will know]. 133:14. If some are of the tribe of the Priesthood, these will be able to go within the veil with the High Priests.

1 Jeu 39. At this topos the Watchers move the veils aside and you enter into the presence of the Father, who gives you His name and His seal.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Legend of the Waubansee Stone

Archeologists, anthropologists, and historians are only now beginning to revise much of their understanding of the ancient world. Text books have taught since Columbus that Columbus was the first to travel by ship to the New World.  More recently, a few text books have conceeded that maybe early Vikings such a Leif Erikson also visited Greenland and possibly further.  But historians are now having to revise history again acknowledging the existence of hundreds of Phoenician mooring stones, ancient rune stones, and other artifacts that are found throughout the Americas. And most of these artifacts are not recent discoveries but have been know since thre early 1800's. 

The Waubansee Stone for example was in possession of the Chicago museum (same museum housing the Joseph Smith papyrii) and after the Great Chicago fire in 1871 found its way into service as a drinking fountain for a time.  This stone is now thought to be a Phoenecian mooring stone that may have marked the entrance from Lake Michigan to the Chicago River which leads to the Mississippi River.  In addition to the carved face, this stone features a basin with a chiseled hole that was meant to catch the blood of a sacrifice and drain it down through the middle and out the front of the stone. 

Another interesting aspect of the Waubansee Stone is the very detailed but possibly fraudulent alternative story put forth by Henry H. Hurlbut, a member of the Chicago and Wisconsin historical societies.  The Hurlburt's story contains way too much detail to even summarize. (google: Waubansee Stone) Hurlbut goes to great length to describe the stone as a fancy mortar for grinding corn.  But, the question is, why go to all the trouble to deceive and explain away the stone as only common?  

Some are now saying that this purposeful suppression was due to Manifest Destiny.  Thanks to Manifest Destiny, there was a huge conspiracy put in place to conceal the true origins of the Native Americans in order to characterize them as sub-evolved savages and deny them constitutional rights.  Native Americans were classified as sub-human in order to appear to legally claim American soil by new European settlers.  Hiding the true origins of the Native American's would also served to discredit the Book of Mormon.

This new Phoenician myth reminds me of another much more ancient myth that stood for thousands of years.  3000 years ago the Phoenicians controlled all trade and shipping in the Mediterranean. In addition to their capital in Carthage, the Phoenicians owned port cities throughout the Mediterranean including the Strait of Gibraltar. No ships were allowed to pass the straits.  The story was told and perpetuated that the Earth was flat and any ship that passed the straits risked falling off the edge of the Earth.  The popularity of the Earth is flat myth is one of the major reasons why most historians believed no one before Columbus visited America.  These historians, in a way, still believe the myth.

This was such a great myth that it didn't end with the Phoenicians but continued with Rome and even endured to the Spanish Empire until the vogage of Columbus in 1492.  While this fraudulent myth was perpetuated throughout Europe, it turns out that the Phoenicians were traveling the New World routinely as these many mooring stones demonstrate.

I grew up in Salt Lake and was exposed to the many firesides, FARM and even occasional Ensign articles looking for the Book of Mormon lands in Mesoamerica.  A few details fit, here and there, between the Maya and Book of Mormon but it was mostly very dissatisfying. I even grew up with a "Book or Mormon Lands" poster on my bedroom wall. When I met my wife, her uncle is a world expert on the Maya.  I asked him if there was any connection between the Maya and Book of Mormon which he flatly and unapologetically said "No"!

Now genetic (mDNA Haplogroup X), anthropologic, archeological evidence, and specific statements by the prophet Joseph Smith are finally being recognized which point to the Adena Culture and Hopewell Cultures of North America as the Jaredites and Nephites of the Book of Mormon. 

What myths we are told and believe as a society today?

[Michigan Ship Petroglyph]

History is indisputable that scientists and rulers from the Greek period including Pythagoras and Ptolemy clearly understood the Earth to be round.  The issue with Columbus sailing to America was not fear of a flat Earth but navagating in the open ocean. However, it is currently being debated if flat Earth myth was generally believed by the mid-evil serf and whether the myth was purposefully promulgated by the Church and the popular arts. 

Monday, June 06, 2016

Divine Division of Labor: Freedom in Divine Submission

Why do only men in the Church hold the priesthood and why Christian scriptures seemed to have a bias towards men and prejudice against women? Why does 1 Cor 11 instruct women to generally keep long hair? Why did prophets in the Old Teatament and early LDS Church practice polygamy? Why do scriptures say women must submit to a man (father, husband, bishop) to have a personal relationship with God.  Shouldn't women be free and independent?

1. In the Old Testament before Moses, the responsibility of the priesthood was given to the oldest male child. In addition to receiving a double portion of inheritance from the father, the oldest child had the responsibility to care for his fathers dependents (wife, unmarried daughters) in his absence or after his death. This priesthood policy generated considerable envy and jealousy from the beginning resulting in Cain slaying Abel, Ham in Egypt counterfeiting Shem's authority, and Joseph later being sold into Egypt by his brothers.

After Moses, the priesthood was given to the sons of Levi and Aaron.  Moses was immediately challenged on this policy. Accordingly, Moses then had all the tribes of Israel post a staff in the courtyard of the tabernacle to prove that it was God who determinied that only the tribe of Levi should hold the priesthood. The next morning the whole congregation witnessed that Aaron's staff had not only  budded, but had blossomed and born fruit (almonds). 

Aaron's staff resides in the Ark of the Covenant. Only Levites were permitted to touch the Ark.  One day the Ark was tipped and could have fallen to the ground and a non-Levite Uzzah put forth his hand to "steady the ark".  God was displeased and lightning immediately struck Uzzah dead for the infraction notwithstanding his good intent. 

In the New Testament, the gospel first went to the Jew and then Gentile, and now in the Last Days, all worthy men can be authorized to hold this authority.  In heaven, the divine authority to create and enjoy eternal increase will be open to all who are willing to receive, but here in this world, we are to submit to Gods will and God's temporary policies.  God declares that he is no respector of persons and all are alike unto God: black, white, bond, free, male, female, Jew and Gentile.

2. Elder Bendar came to speak to the Augusta Ward several months ago and my daughter remembers him liken the atonement of Christ to an umbrella and the priesthood to a the shaft that holds the umbrella up.  The atonement of Christ shields us from death and sin like the umbrella shields us from rain and snow. 

The holders of the priesthood are authorized to administer the ordinances of the gospel which grant us access to the atonement. According to our analogy, righteous men are authorized to hold up the umbrella for others.  Although, making the atonement effective in our lives is an individual matter.  We may be invited to stand under the shelter of the umbrella, but our getting wet or staying dry depends on where we choose to stand. 

Ultimately, Elder Bednar said that he didn't know why men were authorized to hold the priesthood.  In my mind, even if a secretly unrighteous man was holding the umbrella, that doesn't mean the umbrella wouldn't shelter from the storm even if held by an unrighteous umbrella holder.  Unfortunately, that umbrella holder would likely be rather ineffectual in inviting others to shield themselves under its protective canopy, and he himself would be soaking wet. 

3. The things we do in life are not about what we want necessarily.  Christ made the point that he came to Earth exclusively to "do the will of the Father in all thing" and that nothing he did of His own will but only that which He had "seen His father do". When it came to the great atonement, Christ prayed, "not as I will, but as Thou wilt". This life is a test to see if we will submit our will to God in all things. 

Ultimately the priesthood is about serving and helping others and not ourselves. With the world attacking fatherhood, and the traditional family, men are benefitted by the priesthood which gives them purpose by providing extra duties and responsibility. Men find opportunities while administering (paperwork and taking out garbage) to minister (bring people to Christ). Women minister more naturally as a part of their more divine nature. In my opinion, I do not think it would be respectful to women's talents to waste their time doing paperwork when they need to be applying those talents to ministering to the Church and each other outside the home and ministering to their children within the home.

Polygamy in the Old Teatament and Early Church was not about exploiting women. The people who administered it did not wish it. They did it as they were commanded and called by God.  Abraham was given Hagar by Sarah for to purpose of raising a righteous seed.  This wasn't Abraham's idea.  Jacob was rather tricked into a marriage with Leah because Laban was concerned Leah would never marry. Later, Rachel gave Jacob her handmaiden because she believed she could not bare him children. And Jacob fully provided for and protected his whole house. In the early LDS period, polygamy served as a necessary welfare system in the dry and barren frontier of the Utah Territory. LDS couples who were called into polygamy supported several households. 

4. Power to make a positive difference is what we want, not necessarily authority.  Authority comes with responsibility.  But, you can exercise just as much or more  power through righteous influence than authority. Kings, pharoah and presidents have been controlled by their magicians, advisors and handlers for millennia.  I have exerted great influence over a ward with lesser callings such as missionary in a spanish branch (25 active to 100+), ward mission leader in an inner-city ward (100+ baptisms/yr) or activities committee chair in a BYU singles ward (30+ marriages). My wife has exercised great influence as visiting teaching coordinator (she will take over by knowing everything about everyone). 

5. You cannot separate your love and discipleship of God with His Church and His servants.  God has said, "whether by mine own mouth, or by the mouth of my servants, it is the same". You cannot seperate your love of God without submitting to the atonement of Jesus Christ.  You cannot enjoy a personal relationship with God through prayer and personal revelation, and despise His Church which He established, His ordinances which He has given, His servants who He called and authorized, and the family which He has ordained as the the divine foundation of society. 

In life we are to learn three lessons: 1. Love God above all else. 2. Control our bodies, 3. Submit to God's priesthood authority. Many people claim they habe learned lesson 1. but deny the need to learn 2, and 3. 

6. No women in the history of the Earth have been more blessed and enjoyed more freedom and independence than Christian women. It is only the modern feminist movement that causes many women to feel disattisfied and unappreciated. The LDS Church doesn't have professional preachers that teach all the lessons and give all the sermons. LDS women preach the sermons and teach Sunday School along side the men.

Women are married and endowed in temples of God.  There women like men enter unto sacred covenants.  As they fufill those covenants they are acting with priesthood authority.  

Women are given many callings and assignments and responsibilities in Gods kingdom all the way to the top. All women who accept these callings are set appart and given priesthood authority to fulfill their callings wherher it is a Nursery Leader, Sunday School teacher, Gospel Doctrine Instructor, Relief Society Priesident, Missionary, Service Missionary, Stake Young Women's Priesident, Temple Matron, General Primary President, Visiting Teacher, or Mother and Wife in Zion.  All these callings and responsibilities are performed by the authority rights privileges and blessings of the priesthood. 

Yes, there is a division of labor in Gods Church like there is in the family. But the division focuses each member on the tasks that best align with theur God-given talents and abilities. The divine divisiin of labor is a blessing that increases the efficiency and effectiveness of the work of God. 

7. The call by God for wives to "submit" to their husbands is not a command for them to be subservient to them.  Instead, the meaning is the exact opposite. The call is for women to allow their husbands to serve and provide for them. Women demonstrate all the time that they can make it and raise and provide for a family on their own. God is calling for women to allow their husbands to lead out in spiritual matters, in providing and protecting so that they feel needed, feel important, and have purpose.

Women were not created to be a slave or servant to their husbands but to be a devine enabling help (ezer) like Christ. Paul taught that "man is not without the woman nor woman without the man in the Lord".  Man could not be perfected without the influence of their wives. I could not and would not be where I am today without my eternal sweetheart.  My wife truly has been a divine blessing to me sent from God. 

In the Church or body of Christ, no part is more important than the other. The head is not to exalt itself over the feet and visa versa. In God's kingdom, those who seek to be greatest of all must be servant of all.  In God's system, the school janitor with all the keys who cleans the toilets would have greater authority than the principal. 

8. Women have access to every blessings and benefit of the priesthood without necessarily all the busywork of the kingdom.  Women do however have great responsibility to serve and minister in the home, community and kingdom.

9. Same is not equal. Women and men are different.  We have been given different physical abilitiess, talents, spiritual gifts.  Accordingly, men and women are given different roles within the family and husbands and wives are to work together as equal partners.  Rebelling against reality and truth is not independence or freedom but just misguided.  When God freed Israel from bondage in Egypt the first thing He did was give them the 10 commandmemts for the porposes that they could govern themselves and preserve their freedom.  There is no freedom and no independemce apart from acknowledging our dependance upon God. 

10. For 6 thousand years Satan has ruled upon the Earth.  God is intently invested in finally ruling over his creation for the benefit and blessing of all people.  Look at the suffering and inequality in the world.  This suffering is not a witness as the atheists claim against God but a witness against Satan who is the author of injustice from the beginning.  Those responsible for the suffering and inequality use their controlled media to point the finger at God. On the other hand, God has a perfect system called the United Order and it alone holds the answers to the problems and suffering that perplex the world. We need more people that can exhibit some faith in God and His plan, His system, and His Kingdom to finally bring it to pass.