BOWbutton

This button is a resource to link those desiring baptism with those having authority to baptize. More information can be found here.

 

Fidelity in Marriage

Fidelity to your spouse is foundational to righteousness. Immorality is disruptive of marriage, destructive of families, and has no place in a City of Peace.

Group sex, immoral relationships and free intercourse is offensive to God, a violation of the Ten Commandments, and the means of spreading disease.  God does not justify carnal relations except between one man and his one wife. They two are the image of God. Anything else degrades and corrupts. Participants in immoral behavior become laden with sin.

Those foolish enough to be misled by this darkness deserve to be taken captive and destroyed, as will certainly come to pass.

Reformation Sunday

As this Reformation Sunday draws to a close I wanted to honor those who went before: Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Knox, John Wesley, John Wycliffe, and the Pilgrims who were inspired by their cause to come to American to establish a New Jerusalem, a land of faith, a place of peace and freedom.

We went to the services of the Presbyterian Church on South Temple in Salt Lake City this morning to celebrate the occasion. The bagpipes and drums stir the heart of even the casual believer. That building’s great stained glass windows testify in the west of Christ’s birth and in the east of His resurrection. The sun was rising in the east during the early morning service, and lit the image of the angel in announcing His resurrection. The lower stained glass windows in the west testify of the many events in His life and ministry. What a wonderful setting it was to remember the Reformation.

The Reformation set the stage for God’s final work. A Restoration began in Joseph Smith. It will continue. That New Jerusalem sought by the reformers will yet be established.

How odd it seems that in this dreary last chapter where rampant impurity, gross immorality, the love of man growing cold against one another–how odd it is that in this day the Lord would again stir us to remember His promise of Zion. Yet it was always foretold to be so, for the Lord said both wheat and tares would grow together until ready for harvest. (Matt. 13:24-30; D&C 86:7.) Tares are ripening. What is God to make of His wheat?

My Son’s Self-Sustaining Experiment

I have a son who is experimenting with self-sustaining lifestyle. He has moved to rural New Hampshire on an isolated tract of land where he and his family are trying different ventures. One of them (soap production) is now past the hobby stage and into production. We have been buying and using the soap for about a year now. He has now produced enough to sell to others outside the family.

His family’s website is “Earthen Step” located at earthenstep.com

Here is a description of the soap taken from his website:

We started off with cold process soap and became addicted quickly.  The first bars that we made were very mediocre compared to what is being sold on this website.  But, those first bars blew away any soap you can find at your local super-market.  They were even superior to many handmade soaps we have tried since then.  We seemed to have a knack for this “hobby.”  After hundreds of bars we have refined our recipes and only share the best.

These bars are very gentle and have unique scents and attributes.  Many people have told us they don’t need to use lotion anymore after using this soap.  They are very gentle on the skin and help your skin mantle get in balance with itself — they are also very great at cleaning the most dirty of skin.  Most soap out there is too harsh and many aren’t even true soap, just chemical detergents.  These harsh chemicals strip your skin and replace it with nothing.  The bars we sell leave behind high-quality vegetable oils such as: olive oil, shea butter, coconut oil, cocoa butter, palm oil, avocado oil — see individual product pages for all the ingredients used.  We do this by “superfatting” our soaps which leaves 5% or more of the oils behind after saponification.

Saponification is the process of fatty acids (we use vegetable oils/butters) reacting to a strong alkaline (we use sodium hydroxide).  This reaction takes place, turning the oil/lye mixture into various salts and glycerin.  The salt is what cleans your skin and glycerin moisturizes. All of the moisturizing glycerin is left in the soap — commercial soaps strip this out and sells it to be used in other cosmetics/lotions.  The extra oils that are left behind from the superfatting condition the skin and help replenish your skin’s protection barrier.

We only use nature-made ingredients to color and scent our bars.  The only synthetic we use is sodium hydroxide, and it is of food-grade quality.  We use vegetable oils andbutters, clays, mud, leaf powders and other natural ingredients.  We list every ingredient used on each product page.

This experiment is to gain practical experience in living self- sufficiently by producing the basic necessities and relying less on others. We all should learn to rely less on a complex society that requires peaceful cooperation to supply the necessities for life and basic hygiene.  There are a lot of needs that our ancestors satisfied by their own hand that are lost to us. Rediscovering those home-manufacturing skills is something we all should consider at least experimenting with to learn how to care for ourselves and others.

Clarifying Distinctions

The “stone cut out of the mountain without hands” (Dan. 2:44-45) is not a corruptible institution but an incorruptible Gospel.

There is no organization currently ministering the “gift of the Holy Ghost” as a right conferred upon an individual to remain always with them. There is an admonishment directing people to: “receive the Holy Ghost.” That admonishment is directed to the individual as advice, counsel or an objective to seek for, not as a right conferred indelibly upon them. (See, David Bednar, Receive the Holy Ghost, April 2010 General Conference; That We May Always Have His Spirit To Be With Us, April 2006 General Conference.) As recently as the Sunday morning session of the last LDS conference, President Eyring explained the limits of the LDS connection to the Holy Ghost. “We desire it, yet we know from experience that it is not easy to maintain. We each think, say, and do things in our daily lives that can offend the Spirit.” (The Holy Ghost as Your Companion.) Anyone of any faith anywhere in the world can have the same experience as a transitory gift from God. (Moroni 10:4-5.) Remember God gives liberally to all; the wicked and the righteous.  People of faith throughout the world have as much access to the Holy Ghost as a latter-day saint. If it were not so, the LDS missionaries could not advise an investigator to pray and ask God – pointing out Moroni 10:4. If it were not so, Joseph could not have asked God relying on the promise of James 1:5. There is nothing special about the LDS admonishment, but it is a good, worthy and correct principle which all mankind ought to follow. If they do, no matter what their faith traditions, they will harvest the same results as those spoken of by President Eyring in the last LDS general conference.

Christ, however, can give the permanent gift of the Holy Ghost by His touch. (3 Ne. 18:36; Moroni 2:1-3.)

There are no “sealing” keys used by any Mormons in their temple rites: “Brothers and sisters, if you are true and faithful the time will come when you will be called up and anointed kings and priests, queens and priestesses, whereas now you are only anointed to become such. The realization of these blessings depends on your faithfulness.” It, like the Holy Ghost, is conditioned on your faithfulness. This same promise is made to all mankind by the Lord. (See, e.g., D&C 14:7; D&C 96:6; Alma 11:40; Moroni 7:41.)

Christ can and does seal a man up to eternal life. (See, e.g., Mosiah 26: 14, 20; Enos 1:5-8; D&C 132:49; 1 John 2:25.)

Institutions who use fear to control the hopes and aspirations of mankind concerning eternal life are in the gall of bitterness. Fear is of the devil. When the final remnant is gathered, they will have shepherds who remove fear. (Jeremiah 23:2-5.) When we are prepared by Christ, and by His word alone, we will not fear. (D&C 38:30.)

If we are warned we should warn others. But the Lord has instructed: “And let your preaching be the warning voice, every man to his neighbor, in mildness and in meekness.” (D&C 38:41.)

Missionary Work

Now, as you have asked, behold, I say unto you, keep my commandments, and seek to bring forth and establish the cause of Zion.

Now, Behold, a marvelous work is about to come forth among the children of men. Therefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind and strength, that ye may stand blameless before God at the last day. Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work; For behold the field is white already to harvest; and lo, he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that he perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul; And faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye single to the glory of God, qualify him for the work. Remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance,patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility,diligence. Ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. Amen.

For behold, it is not meet that I should command in all things; for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore he receiveth no reward. Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness; For the power is in them, wherein they are agents unto themselves. And inasmuch as men do good they shall in nowise lose their reward. But he that doeth not anything until he is commanded, and receiveth a commandment with doubtful heart, and keepeth it with slothfulness, the same is damned.

New Website Update

On the first day there were baptizers authorized, requests to be baptized submitted and at least one baptism arranged.

To help those desiring to receive baptism, there is now a button that can be used on other sites to refer people to the baptism website. There is more information available at BornOfWater.org. The button has been installed at the top of this site and can be used as an active link back to the Born of Water site. The rate of progress is astonishing to me. There will be other developments as the Lord’s work rolls forward. All of those involved are working as volunteers. There is no central control, and everything should be done by a common spirit and common cause.

New Website and Logo

An important step has been achieved. A new website titled “Born of Water” is now live. The website allows anyone located anywhere in the world who desires to be baptized to identify themselves. It is all confidential.

The website also allows those with authority to baptize to identify themselves in a confidential submission. Those qualified to baptize can then determine if they are able to assist someone in need of baptism. If they are able and willing to help, the baptizers can send a contact through the site to the one wanting baptism. This way those in remote locations will be able to receive baptism.

The logo on the site is shaped like two hands reaching upward, forming the image of a dove. The eye of the dove is a mark on the wrist of the right hand. The colors in the corners of the mark are the colors of the veil in the Tabernacle of Moses and Temple of Solomon. It is a trademarked, copyrighted and servicemarked registered image that is the property of Adrian Larsen. He alone can give or revoke permission to use the image that is his property.

The logo will appear on three sites: Born of Water, Recorder’s Clearinghouse, and for a time on this site to acquaint people with the logo. The logo is a way to vouch for a site’s privacy and safety. If the logo is authorized for use, the public can be confident it will not take them to a site of a hostile group, commercial enterprise or specious origin. It is a way to identify authenticity.

Big Cottonwood Conference Remarks

Last Sunday I went to Big Cottonwood Canyon as a conference involving 7 fellowships was ending. I went to visit with those who were there and inquire of those who attended what their observations were concerning the conference.

I got into a conversation with a few of the people who were still there after the closing prayer, but was handed a microphone and told that others felt I was leaving them out. Rather than seem unfriendly, I went ahead and took the microphone and spoke for a few minutes to everyone still there. I learned that what I said was recorded, and a copy of the transcript was sent to me for review. I’ve now done a superficial edit to make it more coherent, and filled in some missing portions, including the first few moments that were not recorded. Without voice inflection, transcripts can be misleading even if they were the actual words. Humor and irony in particular can be misunderstood when the speaking voice is absent. So I’ve done some editing to make some things clear. I haven’t filled in source materials, or cited to all the material I am quoting from the TPJS or scriptures. Those who study will readily identify them.

I did not intend to be put on display or get the attention of the group when I went up. I timed my arrival to be after the conference part was over. I wanted to hear from those who were there. I did not intend to speak. What happened frustrated that purpose.

I hate being made the center of attention. I am not a celebrity,  do not want to be one and should not be treated like one. I am another ordinary man living in perilous times seeking hard to do what the Lord asks of me. I fear my weaknesses. I fear failure. We all must be careful about confining our admiration to God alone. If I cannot be allowed to come and quietly participate or observe, then my family and I will not come.

If I am asked to say something by the Lord then I will do so. Otherwise, I hope to remain silent and get out of the way. We all have work to do.

The transcript is now on the downloads page of the blog (here) as one of the papers so everyone can read it.

I have heard many positive things about the conference. It was attended by a couple of hundred people. The format was a success. The setting was beautiful. The meadow where the closing prayer was given was a spectacular setting for petitioning God. Best of all, I had nothing to do with organizing it or speaking (until it was over). It was encouraging to see how some took the initiative and much good was accomplished by these few fellowships. A surprising amount of food was still available for the post-conference dinner. What a great thing happened!

Priesthood and Baptism Questions

I’ve been asked in several emails if the recent post titled “Priesthood and Baptism” means I’m advocating changes to the criteria for baptism. At first I thought the inquiries were unnecessary. But now I think I should clarify:

That recent post included the following introduction: “I answered an email from someone who has read the things I have written about priesthood, including the Elijah materials. He was asking about priesthood held by LDS men who were not in a position of leadership, and inquiring whether LDS missionaries could still offer acceptable baptism. Those who have read what I have written will understand the question and my response.”

I thought it would be clear because when I refer to “what I have written” TWICE in the introduction, I wrongly assumed everyone reading that would understand it means what was said before still mattered. The answer was clarifying that a fully conforming missionary could qualify, and would not be disqualified merely by reason of serving an LDS mission at the time they baptized.  It should not be required to rehearse every detail related to every topic every time a simple issue is raised by a question.

I hope this answers these additional inquiries and helps to point out how to read a post.