There, confessing my sin does make me feel better. Maybe I’ll cover some others in the future.
I got asked about loss of teachings or practices within the LDS community. My response is as follows.
Jesus never challenged Roman authority. He submitted to it. When the time comes for the establishment of Zion, it will not be necessary for us to deviate from Christ’s example. Those who are in the promised latter-day Zion will be protected by the “the terror of the Lord.” The residents will be those who “will not take up arms against their neighbor.” (D&C 45: 66-71.) There is no need to overthrow the world. It will overthrow itself. The Lord will not permit the wicked to destroy the righteous. (1 Ne. 22: 16.) It is the wicked who destroy the wicked. (Mormon 4: 5.)
Mark Twain had a greater influence on my childhood development than any other writer. Here are a few of his quotes:
There’s that old saying that when God wants to change the world, He sends a baby. Whether that baby is Buddha, or Gandhi, or Abraham Lincoln, or Henry Ford, or Thomas Beckett, or Jesus, the world changes when babies enter mortality. All lives matter. No one matters more than another in my view. The accumulation of lives well lived is the stuff of history. How many unnamed artisans were required to build the Parthenon?
You matter. All of us do. Good ideas can now spread on eagle’s wings, so to speak. A spark kindled today can light the whole world.
Second, the primacy of good.
Identification of the “remnant” was critical to Joseph Smith. Although we’ve discarded the issue, it was of central concern to the early Brethren. So much so that the “remnant” was what drove the movement westward near the “borders of the Lamanites” The first missionaries were sent to the “Lamanites” as part of the Restoration’s concern with the promised “remnant” of the Book of Mormon people. (See D&C 32: 2.) The Saints were required to move west to be near these people as part of locating Zion. (D&C 54: 8.)
There’s a family I home teach whose son is on a mission in Kenya. They ride a motorcycle to teach outlying areas. Three at a time on the bike through the rain and on muddy roads. They are in a city of 75,000 and not a road is paved in the entire city. Sort of like Sandy, Utah right now. Comparable size and dirt roads everywhere while they do their “stimulus” spending on roadways.
Satan does not create. He cannot. He only destroys what others create.
Since life itself is sacred, and he cannot create life, he shows his “great power” by taking life. This is the reason he taught murder to Cain, because if life is among the greatest of gifts from God, Satan’s secret work of murder attacks the power of creation. (See Moses 5: 29-32.)
If you want to know where Satan’s great work is prospering anytime in history, look for those groups who organize to kill others. Those who preach hate, lead to violence, lead to murder and ultimately mass killing. These are the ones who do not create, nor do they respect the great gift of creation given by God to mankind. These are they who are overcome by the devil, who love a lie, who make war with God and will ultimately succeed in completely rejecting what He has offered to them. (See D&C 76: 28-37.)
20 And now I, Moroni, do not write the manner of their oaths and combinations, for it hath been made known unto me that they are had aamong all people, and they are had among the Lamanites.
21 And they have caused the adestruction of this people of whom I am now speaking, and also the destruction of the people of Nephi.
22 And whatsoever anation 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 bblood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for cvengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not.
23 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 apower and gain—and the work, yea, even the work of bdestruction come upon you, yea, even the sword of the justice of the Eternal God shall fall upon you, to your overthrow and destruction if ye shall suffer these things to be.
24 Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this asecret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up.
25 For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the afreedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people, for it is built up by the devil, who is the father of all lies; even that same liar who bbeguiled our first parents, yea, even that same liar who hath caused man to commit murder from the beginning; who hath chardened the hearts of men that they have dmurdered the prophets, and stoned them, and cast them out from the beginning.
26 Wherefore, I, Moroni, am commanded to write these things that evil may be done away, and that the time may come that Satan may have ano power upon the hearts of the children of men, but that they may be bpersuaded to do good continually, that they may come unto the fountain of all crighteousness and be saved.
Having said the foregoing, let me add that I do not think knowing our awful circumstance does a thing to fix it. What fixes it is to have more people come to the Lord, develop love for their fellow man, and live the commandments given by Him. That is something done one person at a time. I despair when I think in larger numbers than the individual. I rejoice when I think of the single person. For anything is possible with each person, no matter what their circumstances.
What a wonderful thing a ward family is. There hasn’t been a ward I’ve attended that hasn’t been quirky, diverse, interesting and at times trying. It’s a good thing we are divided by area and cannot choose where to attend. We have no choice but to associate with a diverse lot of people. I think that is healthy.