Category: Thoughts

Restoration Conference Recording

A recording of all the talks given in the Joseph Smith Restoration Conference held in Boise last month are now available to watch at:

Restoration Conference Website

I learned things from others about the current state of the Restoration and thought all of the talks were interesting and worthwhile. I am grateful for the opportunity we had to attend.

Consecration Ended by Joseph Smith

After the experiences in the early common-stock companies, and in community efforts in Kirtland, Ohio, Independence, and Far West, Missouri, Joseph Smith ended any attempts at consecration. In a council meeting on March 6, 1840 in Montrose, Iowa Territory, he announced to the church the Lord rescinded consecration:

He said that the Law of consecration could not be kept here, & that it was the will of the Lord that we should desist from trying to keep it, & if persisted in it would produce a perfect abortion, & that he assumed the whole responsibility of not keeping it untill proposed by himself. (JS Papers, Documents Vol. 7, p. 215, emphasis added, all spelling as in original.)

Joseph died before the Lord gave any command to resume it. Therefore the earlier commandment, still in the T&C, as well as the D&C, is not to be kept. Since it was the will of the Lord that consecration end, it will require a new command from the Lord to resume the attempt.

Conference Announcement

The organizers of the upcoming conference have asked that I post their announcement, which I have copied and pasted below:

Teaching Our Children to Honor God through Service

 An Invitation to all Fellowships

Preparation for the 2018 Fall Conference

In order to actively participate in the theme of the 2018 Fall Conference, “Preserving the Hope of Zion, by Teaching our Children to Honor God, we are inviting all fellowships to plan and participate in a community service project.  As followers of Christ all over the world we invite you to prayerfully organize and participate with your children in a service project that is needed in your area.

For those fellowships that feel inspired to participate with their children, please document the service projects with pictures and short video clips.  You can upload your documentation in the Google Drive link below.  Email the conference committee at preservingthehopeofzion@gmail.com to let us know about your project.  Please provide a brief description of what you did.  These projects will be shared at the main Sunday conference session.  This effort is not meant to brag, or to let your right hand know what your left hand is doing.  We hope that the children will be reminded of the joy they feel in serving their community, and be uplifted in viewing the projects of other youth around the globe.  In the spirit of charity for others, we desire to strengthen our connection to the Lord and to one another.

“And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom, that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God”.  (Mosiah 1:8, New Covenants)

We look forward to sharing in your experiences and discussing the joy of service to God with each other at the conference.  Please plan on participating and sending in your pictures and short video clips by August 20, 2018.

“Yea, a man may say, I will show you I have faith without works.  But I say, show me your faith without works, and I will show you my faith by my works.”  (Epistle of Jacob 1:11, New Covenants)

https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/1X60G2fQ1omNAgziNfl8PtSuwGtAXHtcM

  1. Click on the Google Drive Link.
  2. Right click in the middle of the screen, select (add) + New Folder to create a new folder for your fellowship group and service project.
  3. Right click to Upload Picture/Videos of your service project/event.
  4. After uploading photos/videos, email preservingthehopeofzion@gmail.com and notify the conference committee of your contribution to the volunteer service project for the fall 2018 conference.

We look forward to gathering and fellowshipping with you this coming September.

Have a beautiful summer!

God bless,

The Wasatch Front Planning Committee

 

Unable To Take It In

I got an email asking about the phrase describing a revelation that the recipient was “unable to take it in.” I responded:

When God reveals vast amounts of information, truths or visions from a higher order, or material that exceeds our framework of thought, it does not become immediately understood. I have said there are three different stages involved with the greatest revelations:
First, to receive it.
Second, to understand it.
Third, to be capable of teaching it.

Just because it has been received, that does not mean it is understood.

Just because it has been received and understood, that does not mean the recipient is capable of teaching it to others in an understandable or coherent way. It can be a very difficult struggle to move to the point that a person can begin to teach these things to others.

Joseph relentlessly labored and meditated on how to grasp the things opened to his view. That was why he was able to continually teach new truths.

Question About Covenant

I have been asked about two statements: one in the opening remarks at the Boise Conference which did not mention reading the Prayer for Covenant and another one in the note of section 158 saying that the prayer is to be read with the covenant. The opening remarks included this:

I have been given authority from God to deliver His covenant this day. Every formality required from the days of Adam until now for establishing a covenant has been kept and met. Once the covenant is established, those sustained by seven women (or a man inside his own family) who receive it also have authority to administer the ordinance to others who want to be numbered among God’s people. To administer to others, repeat the ordinance. Read aloud the Lord’s Answer and the words of the Covenant. Ask them to stand and say, Yes, and they will become one of the Lord’s covenant people. Do not change the words of the covenant, for to change an ordinance is to break it. (Isa. 24:5.)

The note at the beginning of Section 158 explains:

Continue reading “Question About Covenant”

Our Divine Parents

A pdf version of yesterday’s talk in Phoenix is now up on the “Downloads” part of this website. The talk (paper) is titled Our Divine Parents.

Unfortunately, when converted to pdf the first footnote was cut off. I will reconvert it to pdf and repost it this evening. The first footnote should read this way:

“This is a term used twice by Alman the Younger in his instruction to his son Corianton, recorded in New Covenants Alma 19:13 (hereafter “NC”); Alma 42:8, 16. Joseph Smith referred to this plan as “eternal progression.”

Turned Out of Synagogues

I was struck with what the Lord said in this passage from the New Covenants, Matthew 3:35: “And again I say unto you, Go into the world and do not care for the world, for the world will hate you and will persecute you and will turn you out of their synagogues. Nevertheless, you shall go forth from house to house teaching the people, and I will go before you.”

When the Lord tells us to expect to be “turned out of their synagogues,” I pondered over who would do that casting out. It can only be done by those who own buildings, who control houses of worship, and who expect believers to come to their religious buildings to worship God. It can only be done by those who think they have the right to enforce their religious ideas by compulsion, demanding conformity and suppressing ideas they dislike.

Continue reading “Turned Out of Synagogues”

Website Updates

The website has been changed and updated. This is done preliminary to adding podcasts to the site.

In the “Downloads” section there is a new recording of a talk given Sunday, January 14th. It is titled “That we might become one.”

Cursed: Denied Priesthood

For Joseph Smith, 1838 was a terrible year. Rumors of immorality, begun that year by Oliver Cowdery, were given credibility because Oliver was the scribe who recorded most of the Book of Mormon text.  They are still believed by most Mormon sects, including the LDS church. Cowdery’s insinuations resulted in him being brought before a church court on April 12, 1838 by the Far West High Council. A total of nine charges were brought against Cowdery.

At the time, Cowdery was the Assistant President to the Church and respected as the “second elder” of the church. Cowdery had been one of the Three Witnesses to the Book of Mormon and was responsible for selecting and ordaining the first Twelve Apostles. Cowdery’s church trial was perhaps the most significant to be held in the history of the church.

Continue reading “Cursed: Denied Priesthood”

Thomas Monson Died

Thomas Monson died last evening. I assume many people are aware of this but some people read this website from far distant places and may not yet know of his passing.

He was the last one of the general authorities who were serving in the LDS church when I was baptized in 1973. With his passing there are none of that original group left.

This makes the elderly Russell Nelson the new heir to the president’s position and the one who now possesses and controls all of the LDS church’s assets-or in church parlance the holder of all the keys.

Thomas Monson was a kindly man who projected an image of concern and care for members of his church. His passing leaves two vacancies in the church’s top leadership council which the new president will be entitled to fill.

The New Covenants

There will be three volumes of scripture: The Old Covenants, to be volume 1. The New Covenants, to be volume 2. Teachings and Commandments, to be volume 3.

The second volume of the new edition of the scriptures is now available to download from scripturesproject.blogspot.com.

It is now available in print through Amazon at this link: The New Covenants.

It contains the New Testament and Book of Mormon in a single volume, titled The New Covenants. Joseph Smith always intended for these two to be in a single book. Until now, however, Joseph’s hope was never realized.

Continue reading “The New Covenants”