Zion

This is a commentary on this link http://denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2013/08/we-dont-need-new-church.html

The man is right on. Zion is an idea. This idea is not owned by any one man or group of men. (women either). It exists in the hearts of us all. Someday, conditions will cause it to blossom forth, and then, nothing can stop it.

There is nothing more powerful than a great idea, when its time has come. Great walls cannot keep it out. Armies cannot kill it. Propaganda engines cannot corrupt the vision, when all can see it for themselves.

I believe it will start when enough people are so sick of the way the world has been running all these years; they will realize that our efforts so far have been a FAILURE; and they will try to institute a new order. Eventually, we will succeed.

Sealing, Keys, and Priesthood

We were having a discussion on Facebook about how people are sealed to one another. Here is a comment from Rob Lauer:

“We seal ourselves to one another by the Holy Spirit of Promise which is that spiritual bond that we create one with another. And whatever glory we possess when we enter into eternity is the glory that we have cultivated within ourselves; it is not given to us or granted to us by some outside power or authority. As the eternal aspect of each of us is eternal and uncreated, without beginning or end, we possess the power and authority to order our lives and to progress on our own. When we cultivate any degree of glory within ourselves, it is because we have lived in harmony with the eternal natural law upon which that glory if predicated. Ordinances and rituals are–like scripture–works of art, the creations of human beings. This gives them even deeper meaning to us as they can speak powerfully to our individual conditions; but ordinances and rituals only celebrate a spiritual reality or aspiration. In and of themselves they do not (cannot) grant blessings or powers or insure results of any kind.” Rob Lauer

I agree with what Rob said, but I also believe that authority and keys need to be conferred.

How, do you recognize the two ideas? After thinking and praying about this issue, this is what makes sense to me.

We, as gods in embryo, or as part of the great whole called “God”, whichever way you want to look at it, already possess the power that God has. Nobody can give you any more power than you already have. But, God has one thing that we don’t have.

(1) He has knowledge of HOW to use this power. Without this knowledge, the power is useless and ineffective. Keys in the Priesthood consist of knowledge of how to use the Priesthood. I duscuss elsewhere in this blog, in “The Foundation of Zion Vol. II” how we obtain this knowledge and these keys from God. If a man claims to hold the keys, but possesses no knowledge, then he does not have any keys, nad therefore, no power in his Priesthood. If a man has knowledge of how to use his Priesthood, then, he must, of necessity, recognize that he possesses keys. And he must know that he has the keys.

A formal ordination does not confer Priesthood. It simply means that a body of people recognize your Priesthood and acknowledge that you are able to exercise it within their purview. The article mentioned above describes how receive the ultimate power, knowledge, and keys in the Priesthood from none other than God.

(2) Joseph Smith recognized that no man exercises the Priesthood in a vacuum. Each person who holds the Priesthood, exercises it in concert with every other Priesthood holder who is alive, or who ever lived and held the Priesthood. President John Taylor also taught this principle. Priesthood can only effectively function when we are linked together with our brethren through the ages, and our immediate brethren in a Priesthood quorum. This principle needs to be more fully taught, understood, and lived. We are far more powerful when we organize ourselves into groups of individuals and work and act together as one.

The Correct Expression of Desire

“Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny.” Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

In light of what my teacher, Stephen R. Covey, said in his bestseller, and what we Mormons have heard over the pulpit for years. And, also in light of what the Savior said about a man lusting in his heart having committed adultery already. In light of this, men who profess to be “apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ” have stated the following:

“The attraction itself is not a sin, but acting on it is. Even though individuals do not choose to have such attractions, they do choose how to respond to them.” mormonsandgays.com.

How can somebody have attractions without having thoughts and feelings about them? And, how can somebody harbor these thoughts and feelings without eventually acting on them? So, I guess what they are really saying is “Go ahead and have those thoughts and feelings. Suppress them. Turn them off. Take lots of cold showers. Sing hymns. Marry in the temple. Put yourself and others through hell and misery. Then, when you finally can’t take living the lie (thinking without acting), you take that step, and when you do, we’ll get you.”

This is like a person getting a testimony of the Church, but is forbidden to join the church. (Incidentally, missionaries are told not to proselyte Gays, for this very reason.)

Here is a more excellent way. Or, another way to think about it. God has made all things for the benefit of man, and are to be used with care and wisdom, in moderation, always acknowledging the Divine Hand that gave that gift. (D&C 59)

Every other attraction, feeling, emotion, thought, aspiration that we experience, is neither good nor evil, until it is expressed in action. It is the expression thereof which is either a blessing or a sin. There is a time and a place for every thing (Ecc. 3:8). But, not THIS?? There has to be a way to express these attractions in a healthy, and not a sinful way. And, not in a way that harms others. There is a way for everything else, why not this? Have you ever thought about this before?

Here is a suggestion. What is the sin if these attractions find their expression in a stable, committed, monogamous legal marriage? That option is now on the table in most advanced Western countries, and in many US states. Why do those who process to be servants of God fight against the principles of the Gospel, and against the very means (legal marriage) which will provide a way to fulfill these attractions AND live the Gospel? Adultery is still adultery. Infidelity is still infidelity. The real sin is that we make a covenant of marriage and fail to fulfill that covenant. Those who find themselves outside the walls of Zion looking in will be those who love and make a lie. (Rev. 22:15).

So, in one respect, the Big Brethren are right. The key is how we RESPOND to these attractions. But, they offer no proper or effective way to respond to them. I have offered a way to respond to them. I hope you will consider this response, and I hope that somebody who is in a position of authority in the Church will prayerfully consider this response, and put it to the Lord, as I have.

Reforming Mormonism – Would It Even Work?

Christ failed to reform Judaism. Martin Luther failed to return the Catholic church. Joseph Smith failed to reform Protestantism. While I applaud your efforts, don’t be disappointed when your efforts fall on deaf ears and the church that you loved all your life, the one you thought was so nice and friendly and understanding, suddenly turns on you. As Christ told us, you cannot put new wine in old bottles.

I have some very harsh words for you. This church has sunk into apostasy even more quickly than the Catholics did. They are ripening in iniquity. How do I know this? Samuel the Lamanite in the Book of Mormon, a hated Lamanite outsider, standing on the wall of the Nephite city, warned that the sign the city had ripened in iniquity was when they started driving the righteous from among their midst. Right now, that city is the church you claim to love, that wall is your Facebook wall, and I come to tell you these words in the same spirit as Samuel came.

That church is driving out the best blood of this generation — worthy and valiant young men and woman, dividing families asunder. But, they are too stupid, too asleep, and too blind to see the great losses occurring all around them.

The Lord had spoken to many of us “hated outsiders” in the Gay community, who return like Samuel of Old, bearing a message, and a warning, and also news that God still loves us; the Restoration is far from complete; and if the people manifest sufficient faith, a new dispensation of the Gospel is right around the corner. God is willing to begin again and will work with us if we will work with him. Zion is no nearer or no further away than the spiritual conditions of the Saints justifies. Why do we waste time fighting an uncaring and unresponsive hierarchy, when we could be following the real God and strengthening our families, building Zion, and preparing for the Second Coming?

And, not only Gay Mormons and ex-Mormons, you have the testimony of millions of Gays around the world of every faith, who affirm that they know God still loves them.

If they would not listen to Christ, Martin Luther, or Joseph Smith, what makes you think they will listen to you. Right now, your only hope lies in the parable of the widow and the unjust judge. Perhaps if you importune on behalf of you son, enough times, they will unstop their ears and their hearts and hear you. I pray that they will, but I fear that they will not.

What is Religion?

When I was young and naive, I used to thing that the purpose of religion was to discover new truth and teach it. But, I have come to realize that religion is just a way to control the masses.

“Religion” comes from a root word that means to “tie up”, or “to bind”.

Don’t get me wrong. Discipline is a school which we must all attend until we master the art of discipleship. Then we must graduate and our teachers must ALLOW us to graduate into something greater.

What Separates Us from God?

We need to consider the people in the Book of Mormon and the Pearl of Great Price, who looked FORWARD to the atonement of Christ, and through the atonement, and the knowledge that they gained, they were redeemed from the fall and were brought back into the Presence of God.

This is a much-overlooked Mormon doctrine. “We believe that men will be punished for their OWN sins, and NOT for Adam’s transgression.” Think about the implications of this. Isaiah 59:2 says: “Your sins have separated you from God.” It’s you that have separated yourself from God, and not the other way around. He would love to have you back, anytime you are ready. This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God.

All is Relationships

A response to a discussion about relationships.
Stephen:
An interesting development has been taking place for me personally of late and that is the simple discovery that the more ‘relationships’ we have with others the more the ‘love’ can flow.
Without relationships there is no love and there is no life.
John:
Congratulation on your discovery! You can read all about this, and somebody can explain this to a person till the cows come home, but until this realization dawns on you personally, and you can experience it for yourself, it’s just words.
Here are some more words.
Not only is the quantity relationships conducive to the flow of love, but the depth and quality of those relationships, as well.
What we are describing is energy flow.
1. In order to exist, an entity or particle must send and receive energy.
2. If an entity does not send or receive energy, does it really exist? If so, how could be detect it unless we could detect the presence of an energy flow?
3. We could also say that to the degree a particle or entity is able to freely circulate energy, the more fully it may be said to exist.
All is relationships. Everything exists in relationship to everything else; otherwise it does not exist.
The study of reality is the study of relationships.
The way to improve the quality of life of humanity is to improve the quality of our relationships.