Cursing and Abominations

Cursing and Abominations

Before proceeding further, it is important to recognize that this is not an inconsequential matter. If someone guesses they can have plural wives and they are wrong, they have gone too far. They are taking a dangerous step. They risk eternity. Therefore this topic should not be approached casually, or because someone “thinks” this is
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Jacob and Section 132

Jacob and Section 132

Through Joseph Smith we have two scriptural sources dealing with plural wives. Jacob 2, in the Book of Mormon condemns the practice as “an abomination,” but leaves it open to be practiced if the Lord commands. The reason the Lord would command is to “raise up seed unto [Him].” Section 132, beginning at verse 29,
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Did Joseph Receive A Revelation?

Did Joseph Receive A Revelation?

Section 132 of the Doctrine & Covenants is not universally accepted as a revelation received by Joseph Smith. When the discussion cannot proceed beyond whether this originated from Joseph Smith, by revelation, the discussion goes nowhere. Therefore, the first step must be to resolve whether the revelation came through Joseph Smith, or was a later
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History, Lies, Good Faith and Myths

History, Lies, Good Faith and Myths

The topic of Mormonism’s past practice/teaching of taking plural wives puts you squarely in the middle of problems in church history. Deliberate deception and public statements which contradict private behavior is a fact of Mormon history. This fact complicates the difficulty of knowing what is true and right, false and wrong, and whether something is
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Tattoos and Plural Wives

Tattoos and Plural Wives

If we convert someone who has a tattoo we do not refuse to baptize them. If a person born in the church leaves and returns again covered with tattoos, we don’t refuse them fellowship. Nor do we expect anyone to undergo the painful process of having them burned away using a laser. When the church
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The Trick to Avoiding Apostasy

The Trick to Avoiding Apostasy

We began this week with the topic of apostasy. That is where we will end. It is easy to distract and fool people. It is also easy to keep in mind what is essential and will save, and what is distracting and cannot save. Here are a few thoughts that can prevent apostasy: Never confuse
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Salvation and Signs

Salvation and Signs

There are “signs” that show a person is not apostate. Mormon’s teachings to his son recount the signs which show God is saving souls. These teachings are in Chapter 7 of Moroni’s book. The whole text is worth careful study. Moroni records that God will let all mankind know with power and great glory at the last day
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God’s People

God’s People

When God begins work with people, the group becomes “chosen,” and therefore the focus of His continuing efforts to save mankind. Although “chosen people” do not always remain faithful to Him, they do remain the center of His work. A good illustration of this was during the Second Temple period in ancient Israel. Throughout this
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The Prophetic and the Priestly

The Prophetic and the Priestly

There are two approaches to preserving a belief system. Scholars refer to these as “sophic” and “mantic,” but the scriptural language would be “the priestly” and “the prophetic.” Priests deal with rites, ordinances, commandments and procedures. This durable approach to preserving a belief system allows a dispensation of the Gospel to continue to have a
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The Trick to Apostasy

The Trick to Apostasy

The trick to successfully pulling off an apostasy is to distract people into thinking there hasn’t been one. The “believers” need to think everything remains intact. So the issue of “apostasy” becomes a discussion about individuals and individual conformity to the expectations of the group. The subject can then be a topic that polite, fellow-believers
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