The Man who wrote the LDS Essay on the Book of Abraham was a fraud?

Well at least the conclusion that the Book of Abraham has

“parts of standard funerary texts that were deposited with mummified bodies”.

Who wrote the essay?  I’m not sure, it’s unsigned, but what LDS scholar claimed this idea first?

To answer that we need to travel back to 1968 when the LDS church leadership asked Hugh Nibley to publish a set of articles in the New Era on the Joseph Smith Papyri, the Book of Abraham, and what it means.  Why in 1968?

In 1966, Dr. Aziz S. Atiya of the University of Utah noticed that these fragments were clearly part of Smith’s collection of papyri. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) acquired the fragments in 1967. “I Have a Question”. Ensign. July 1988. Retrieved July 9, 2014.)

The church now had the fragments due to a lucky find at The Met, and they needed someone to translate them.  So who better than Egyptologist Hugh Nibley? Except he wasn’t an Egyptologist yet.  He knew Arabic, Latin and Greek, but no Egyptian.  So he wrote a letter to a Dr. Dee Nielson,

How do we know that church leaders approved of Nibley doing this?  He published routinely his findings in Improvement Era, for example February 1968, pp. 40–40H.

With our readers, the staff of The Improvement Era will be looking forward with eager anticipation to additional developments in this fascinating story, and the unfolding of the meaning of the heiroglyphics and illustrations on these valuable manuscripts as they are given by Dr. Nibley in his articles.

And according to a memorandum from President Tanner’s office files photographs of the papyri were then given to Nelson “at the suggestion of Dr. Hugh Nibley” on January 5, 1968. (This was found by Wilbur Lingle on May 18th, 1977, after an “extensive search” because President Tanner had written to a member via telegram “In Reply to your inquiry, I say that I have never Authorized D. J. Nelson to translate the pearl ofGreat Price Papyrus. Signed: N. Eldon Tanner’ )

So what did Nelson Find?

Papyrus

Continue reading

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Dating Fanny Alger (most likely 1835 – 1836)

DatingFannyAlger

Link goes to a PDF.  Research is someone else’s.  Text of research below:

Dating the Joseph Smith – Fanny Alger Relationship

 

Identifying the exact year of the marriage or relationship between Joseph Smith and Fanny Alger is challenging.  Eight of the nineteen accounts in the chart above provide dates that range between 1832 and 1836.[1]

  Continue reading

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17 new reasons to doubt in 2017

When the CES letter came out, the apologists complained that the issues brought up were “old issues” and despite their answers to many of the old issues being wrong, untested, or simply insufficient, they expected people to doubt the CES letter simply because the issues were “old”.

As such, here are 17 “new” reasons to doubt provided, found, or published in 2016:

17) The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, when briefed about Wikileaks were more concerned with contributors’ sexual orientation than they were about church security.  Being visionaries and prophets, they totally missed this would be leaked.

16) Jeremy Runnels was excommunicated (or excommunicated the church) for asking questions.  The very reason Joseph Smith got answers from God is now grounds for being removed from the church.  That should disturb even the most devout member.

15) Former Senator Gordon Smith admitting he was “Church Broke” and would do whatever the leaders asked of him, which included revealing classified information

14) Elizabeth Smart, member and sex captive of a prophet at age 14, speaks out against the church’s teachings

13) The Price of Rugs in the Celestial Room was leaked to be $17,000.  This caused a lot of people to want financial transparency and realize there was none.  They start #FightTheNewRug in response

12) Stake Presidents and Bishops removing temple recommends for associating with family members.  Possibly not new, but something that should give people pause in any case

11) Internal Survey of Church History shows that most members are concerned about the role of women in the church.  And yet the church refuses to consider the implications.

10) Church History Department video leaked explains they don’t do history but instead were to focus on serving the opinions of leaders

9) Church leaders wonder about altering members via drugs in their meetings

8) Church Leaders  discussed using members in political agendas

7) BYU had to revise its Honor Code section Title IX as it protected rapists and sexual harassers instead of victims

6) Dieter Uchtdorf compared the seerstone rock with an iPhone

5) Romney/Trump interactions along with Romney not running for President because Jeb Bush visited him.  Along with this is the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing for Trump’s inauguration after the Deseret News suggested members shouldn’t vote for Trump.

4). The Brass Plates – The gold plates have been criticized for years but the Brass Plates were addressed in my ABC’s and Mormonism series.  They are anachronistic in the following ways:

  • Book binding wasn’t invented yet
  • The 5 books of Moses were not assembled into a single scroll yet
  • Brass etching via acid was not invented yet, which means they had to be engraved increasing the size of each brass plate significantly.

That leads one to wonder how much they would have weighed.  1000 lbs at the minimum or about 2/3 the weight of a cow.  And Nephi walked out with them while wearing armor which leads us to…

3) Armor.  Also from the ABC’s of Science and Mormonism, Nephi, Laman and Lemuel all knew about the stuff because Nephi wore Laban’s armor, so Captain Moroni inventing it shouldn’t have surprised Zarahemna.  Even worse, the Lamanites invent armor in Alma 3 years before Captain Moroni enters the scene (or is even born) in response to Limhi’s people.

2) Wine.  Key to the story of escaping Nephites and King Noah’s Winepress, there was no wine in pre-columbia America.

1) Opioid death in Utah, but Utah declares Porn to be a “Health Crisis”

Opiod death utah

There you go, 17 things that happened this year that still aren’t addressed on FAIRMormon or in any literature that should make anyone take a real long hard look at their religion and wonder where it is headed, and what the next year will bring.

Posted in Current issues | 3 Comments

If you follow the leaders you could end up “a whore in heaven”

Rachel Ivins was raised by Quakers and she had a fault.  She liked to sing hymns.  This one sin was the gateway to a host of activities that were scandalous in her own eyes.

You see Rachel’s family was contacted by a missionary named Jedediah “Jeddy” Grant.  After she joined the Mormons her family complained that she was “all levity”.

singing-hymns

wild and crazy sinning on display

Rachel was 20 years-old when she came to Nauvoo and is quoted by those around her to have charm and refinement. While little is known of her daily Nauvoo activity and interests, her bosom companion was Sarah Kimball one of the wives of Joseph Smith.  Some of her statements are found through Sarah:

 But in private and informal moments, he seemed distressingly “unProphet-like.”  – Rachel Ivins on Joseph Smith

“He would play with the people, and he was always cheerful and happy,” Rachel Ivins on Joseph Smith

Once while visiting the Ivins’ on the Sabbath, Joseph requested the family girls sing the popular “In the Gloaming.” Rachel believed singing and newspaper reading breached the Sabbath and responded with a mortified, “Why Joseph, it’s Sunday!”

Proper and reserved.  And young and desirable and within the reach of Joseph.  You know where this is going.

When she found out Joseph was going to propose to her to be a plural wife like Sarah Kimball she left Nauvoo and ran back to her more reserved family.

She left with the famous statement:

[I would] “sooner go to hell as a virtuous woman than to heaven as a whore.”

And the story might have ended with her as an exmormon who considered herself a virtuous woman except the Prophet’s brother showed up after Joseph died.  Knocked on the door and reminded her of the fun of singing.  She moved out to Utah and in with her “missionary” Jeddy Grant.  They would get married which is sweet and a romantic story except she became his seventh wife, which filters into Rachel’s world view as “a whore in heaven”.

And by following the prophet she happily gave birth to a baby boy… and Jeddy died 9 days later.

Brigham quickly remarried all of Jeddy’s wives to his brother George.  But George had been obedient to Brigham and killed a lot of Indians in the Utah Indian wars in 1851.  He self medicated with alcohol and after a particular public drunkeness incident all seven wives were divorced from George.

Heber, Rachel’s son, said she refused to talk about that whole time period and implicated that abuse may have occurred. She did say

 “One could be happy in the marriage relations without love,” she reportedly advised, “but could never be happy without respect.”

Regardless, Rachel refused to get remarried and started a bed and breakfast where the LDS manuals tell us she and her son were so destitute he didn’t have a proper coat and she sewed late into the night until Heber would help her work the sewing machine so she could continue.

She died a member of the relief society presidency.

So there you go, if you follow the LDS leadership you can end up a whore by your own standard, a single mother so poor you can’t take care of your own kid; while you despise marriage and refuse the institution, just like God’s plan says.  In with the deal you can be forced to marry an abusive alcoholic.

Admittedly this sequence isn’t common in the modern church, but the pattern of going against one’s inner conscious in favor of whatever the leaders prefer and it not being best for the individual will continue as we do more moral tales

 

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Timeline of the Proclamation on the Family

Credit to /u/KickintheFunk from Reddit

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“The purpose of the church history department, rather than the purpose of church history, this is really the purpose of our department, is to help God’s children make and keep sacred covenants”.

“The purpose of the church history department, rather than the purpose of church history, this is really the purpose of our department, is to help God’s children make and keep sacred covenants”.

That’s the church historian, saying that the purpose of Church History is to convince people to believe in the church, not to provide history.

He then rebuts the History Purists who think history should tell its own story.

I’m a purist.  Give me real history, rather than a sales pitch.  I have little respect for marketing wolves in Historian clothing

“They [scholars] are of secondary importance to us”.

He also says the purpose of having scholars is to appear “Respectable, and have scholarly stature”

This is psuedo-science defined.

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Seminary Lesson 7: Matthew 3 – Organizations need to Repent

Lesson 7: Matthew 3

This lesson is one of the most fascinating lessons ever.  No, I’m serious; I’d put it up on the top list of things that logic students, psychology students, business majors and theologians all should study.   It’s about “repentance” and that organizations need to repent too.

You see, it doesn’t just focus on the personal need to repent, like most Christian texts would focus on.  Sure, it begins with “Bring fruits meet for repentance” and John the Baptist, but then it focuses on the Pharisees as a group; and their institution’s need to course correct.  Every organization makes mistakes and needs to course correct from time to time; and so the businessman has a lesson to be learned.  But with the corporate nature of the modern LDS church, I think this lesson takes a deeper dive.  The Pharisee behavior is so similar to what the LDS official position represents that the lesson can be immediately re-directed at the organization that wrote it.  Links to illustrate the hypocrisy will be provided.

John the Baptist preached and baptized in Judea. Jesus Christ traveled from Galilee to the Jordan River, where He was baptized by John. God the Father testified that Jesus is His Beloved Son.

Activity:

Ask the class to imagine how they would feel if one of the students in the class were to get up and begin taking personal items that belong to the other students. Then ask them to imagine that after taking each item, the offending student apologizes but continues to take items from other students.

Ask

  • What would you think about this student’s apologies?
  • How might this student’s actions be similar to trying to repent insincerely?

Compare and contrast:

The LDS church’s stance on race and the priesthood in Brigham’s day

LDS Essay on Race and the Priesthood; note that the church does not apologize

LDS leaders saying they refuse to apologize:

“I know that the history of the church is not to seek apologies or to give them,” Oaks said in an interview Tuesday. “We sometimes look back on issues and say, ‘Maybe that was counterproductive for what we wish to achieve,’ but we look forward and not backward.”

The church doesn’t “seek apologies,” he said, “and we don’t give them.” Dallin H. Oaks, Jan 30th, 2015 Trib talk interview

Ask the students how they’d feel if the thieving student from the previous example didn’t apologize, but just stopped taking things when caught.  (Distrust, “how would you know they stoppped taking items, are likely answers but this is their opinion, let them express it freely)

Point out that the church is attempting the same behavior with other minority groups

Links:

Invite a student to read Matthew 3:1–4 aloud. Ask the class to look for what happened that would help prepare the people for the Savior’s ministry.

Invite a student to read Matthew 3:7 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for whom John spoke to.

Now the Official lesson encourages the teacher to show the students a Palestinian viper

Palestinian-viper-e1462256212816

This isn’t anti-Semitic because John the Baptist says it, and he was a Jew… right?

To be clear, this is the official lesson manual of the LDS church telling not-very-trained teachers to instruct kids that the leaders of another religion are vipers; and actually showing them a viper.

What was it that the Pharisees and Sadducees did that was so bad?

You may want to point out that the Pharisees and Sadducees felt threatened by John, as he drew many people away from their evil influence and false teachings

Elder Ballard recently gave a talk I spoke about where he encourages people to stay away from blogs and podcasts.  They excommunicated John Dehlin.  It appears that the Pharisees and Sadducees (who I’m sure love that they are lumped together, they always got along so well) were guilty of the crime of wanting to keep people from apostatizing from their belief system to follow a “lone voice in the wilderness”.

I don’t think it is respectful to compare the leaders of another religion to snakes, I am just pointing out the hypocrisy; in the hopes that emphasis on divisive rhetoric like this can be removed in future versions.  However photo-shopping Elder Ballard wearing snakes seems about par for the course for the CES systems level of respect.

Write the phrase Bring forth fruits meet for repentance on the board.

I hate this 1920’s style of having the teacher write it up on the board while students watch. I’d rather it said to do this prior to class, as every teacher does it anyway.  Maybe we could modernize it with “Text this to your students”

You may want to explain that the phrase “meet for” means “worthy of”

Remind the class of the scenario you asked them to imagine at the beginning of the lesson

Students may use different words but should identify the following truth: We demonstrate true repentance to the Lord as we change our desires and actions to follow His teachings

Now ask the students if the Race and the Priesthood essay, and Dallin H. Oaks words that the church never apologizes for what it has done means that the church is unrepentant.  Ask if it would be worthy of baptism.  Remind the kids of the how John disliked religious leaders and that John combined the thoughts about needing to repent and the corrupt religious leaders.  Ask them if John might have been calling the leaders to repentance even more than speaking to the people who were already there to be baptized.

But what would I know, I’m just one of those blogs that cries out like a voice from the wilderness about what the CES system teaches.

Exercise in Logic: Write out the logical arguments used in this lesson.  Point out that if A->B where Repentance implies worthy for an individual; and that an organization is a group of individuals; how organizations must consist of repenting individuals to be a worthy organization.  Review if that logic is sound.  Are there exceptions where organizations need to be non-repentant?

Exercise in Theology: Can you find any other organizations in scripture that are expressly called to repentance (examples might be kings, like Nebuchadnezzar or Christ calling Israel to repent as a group, or the Tower of Babel that was all cursed together).  Discuss whether an organization that refuses to apologize for wrong is apostate.  Use scriptures to point out how refusal to repent keeps men from god.

Exercise in Business: Highlight some of your organizations failings.  Discuss how one could “repent” of these mistakes publicly, righting those who were harmed, and altering the course so it doesn’t happen again.  It is typical to affix blame in these cases, but blame matters less than the change.  Talk about how correcting bad behaviors can be profitable for a business

Invite students to ponder any desires or actions they may need to change in order to truly repent. Encourage them to demonstrate true repentance by changing any desires and actions that are not in accordance with God’s teachings.

I invite the LDS leadership to ponder any desires or actions they may need to change in order to truly repent, including publicly admitting historical issues and apologizing for them (including Mountain Meadows, LGBT treatment, and shaming of those who leave the faith).  I encourage you to demonstrate true repentance by changing the desires that drive these actions that are not in accordance with God’s teaching, or basic human kindness.

 

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If God were a Superhero…

Which superhero would He be most like?

Would he be like Batman?

batman-tas

I am Vengeance, I am the night, I am… BATMAN!

Working in mysterious ways, the perfect man, never killing even the guilty, protecting the innocent and always ensuring Justice?

Would he be like Spiderman? 

Spidey-hands

With Great Power comes great responsibility

Is god the under-dog from queens, awkwardly being given power and trying to save everyone and get his homework done on time?

Is God like Captain America?

No you move

I’m pretty sure there’s only one God Ma’am, and he doesn’t dress like that

Fighting the Nazi’s and standing up for Good ol’ American Values; like traditional marriage and love and never altering his position once he knows truth?

Would he be like Thor or Superman?

ThorJesus

Fortunately, I am mighty!

An other-worldy insanely powered individual who maintains His own code of ethics while enjoying combat to protect the innocent?  At first glance, this one is pretty tempting to go with this one, but I’m going to argue no to all of them

God isn’t like Batman, as He killed a huge amount of guilty people throughout the bible, from the 3,000 individuals who rejected the commandments Moses brought down from Sinai, to ordering the children of Israel to commit Genocide.  Beyond that; He also killed the innocent when he flooded the earth.  So, not Batman, or Spiderman.  Brigham Young seceded from the United States when he formed Deseret; so not very Captain America.  The very different commands issued from time to time as doctrine is very un-Steve Rogers as well.

And god rarely drops in to intervene when there is a fight.  He doesn’t use His powers to stop crime, defend the innocent from machine guns, bouncing bullets off his chest or slinging His hammer to protect villages.

No… god is most like Magneto

jesus-magneto

“You are a god among insects. Never let anyone tell you different.”

Here me out.  The LDS God wants people to believe his particular ideology.  Anyone who disagrees is labelled an enemy (A “Lamanite” in the Book of Mormon is anyone not with the Nephites, Brigham calls anyone not a saint a “gentile”, etc.) There is a focus on conversion of those who have not heard of their cause, but refusal to join or leaving the “brotherhood” results in ostracization or shunning.  He grants superpowers and special privileges to those who follow him (I mean, those who follow him have natural talents that are special that are enhanced, but more powers are revealed as they follow him, like a patriarchal blessing).  And he is willing to kill both innocent and guilty to achieve his ends.

In 3 Nephi 9, we hear how God / Jesus destroys entire cities; where innocent and guilty were mixed, without remorse; He enshrouds the remaining innocent (as the guilty are all dead) with darkness for three days.  He touts this destruction to get people to bow to His ideology; and he descends from the sky slowly in a very Magneto style.

God is not good.  God is not kind.  The God of the Book of Mormon is an ideologue who will use death, destruction and utter fear to enslave Homo Sapiens until they agree his chosen group are meant to rule the earth.

All Hail the Magneto-God

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Elder Ballard and Pokemon, continued

I was cut off before I finished my last post on Elder Ballard’s Stake talk, and didn’t get to the Pokemon portion.

I posted the talk to Reddit”s pokemon.reddit.com and pokemongo.reddit.com

Pikachu BoM

Both places gave interesting responses.  From people who stated they met their spouses playing Pokemon, to people whose weddings involved Pokemon themes, to any number of discussions around father’s getting time with their kids on walks due to the game, rather than the kids playing in the basement, it”s clear that this so-called prophet of God is clueless, cinnamon-toast-crunch- style as to why this game is a hit.

i-may-be-blind-cinnamon-toast-crunch

And that is my families experience too.  We have enjoyed poke-walks together, caught rare Pokemon on family vacations, and thrilled together at a shared experience.

What’s more, Ballard’s claim that people are missing the world around them seems downright misleading.  The VR nature means one sees the world around them, just with a Charmander or Pikachu (or more likely 100 Pidgeys)  in front of it.

Pikachu Sydney

Further, anyone who has played knows how many more historical landmarks, places of interest, and key locations were always around them but they never noticed before Pokemon.  Everyone I know who plays has noticed this phenomenon.  His words aren’t just misguided or naive, their actively false.

Finally, I can hear someone reading this saying “But he is right, Pokemon is a distraction.”

Well Actually

“Pokemon is a distraction…right?”

The problem with that logic was pointed out by the Pokemon subreddits repeatedly: anything but God and Family can be called a distraction from God and family.

 

This is called a tautology.  God and Family could be called a distraction from “catching them all”.  Family could be called a distraction from god, and God a distraction from family.

But playing Pokemon as a family can make Pokemon not a distraction from family.

My father used to sing a song “Old Mr. Custer”.  The lyrics were weird and meaningless to my generation.  Then, one night on the Dr. Demento show, we heard the full song.  We recorded it and played it for my father the next day.  Suddenly we had the full context and this item that one might say was a distraction from family became a shared experience.  Bingo, we had a family moment.  My father felt flattered we’d put time into something from his generation; and he could fill us in to why he would sing this song (it was on the radio when he was a sheet-rocker)

Who knows but that some people will “find god” through Pokemon (there are YouTube videos of this.  Yes, I’m serious ).

 

**The real problem**

This illustrates a major flaw with the church… the geriatric nature of apostles illustrates how out-of-touch the church is.  The most common comment on the sub-reddit is that Elder Ballard is just a “get off my lawn old guy making pronouncements”.  And millenia are seeing through it.  They see it in policies towards LGBT.  They see it in how the curch is Utah–centric in both policy and spending decisions.  They see it in every talk given by leaders who are demonstrably out of touch.

Finally, the fact that Pokemon Go!’s popularity is waning by the time the talk is given illustrates how out modded and inadequate the church”s system of information distribution is.

John Dehlin had Ballard’s talk published the next day, but Ballard is reacting to a trend kicked off months earlier.  That lag has haunted the church in its reaction to civil rights, LGBT issues, women’s issues and more, but as the communication systems of the world accelerate, the church will continue to lag behind in even more apparent ways.

I mean, I bet reading this you thought “He’s still talking about that?  That was soon last week”.  Ballard is months behind.  That is exactly my point.  Out of touch, lagging, and trying to control what it doesn’t understand… his Pokemon comments represent the institution perfectly.

In addition; Ballard’s admission he knows nothing about the subject, but then goes on to badmouth it anyway really does some up the leaders’ words regarding church history, LGBT issues, etc. as well.  It’s a microcosm of the real reason why millennials aren’t as interested in the church.

Posted in GA Bullsh*t | 1 Comment

Elder Ballard, transparency, Pokemon and my kids

Elder Ballard spoke on 9/11/2016 to a multi-stake conference.  My family attended, warning, this post is going to get a bit more personal.

m-russell-ballard-large

The Audio is here: http://www.mormonstories.org/m-russell-ballard-regional-broadcast-9-11-2016/

My Transcript of key items and the time they are said is below

Now Elder Ballard is a grown man, and can speak where and when he wishes, but a quick fact check shows that this is mostly bullshit.

First of all he re-iterates that people who leave the church are misled by satan.  He echoes that one can prevent apostasy from scripture, prayer, temple attendance, regular sacrament attendance, etc. that I am hard evidence against.  I was reading scriptures like a madman, serving as an elder’s quorum instructor, engaged in family and personal prayer when my shelf came crashing down.

People don’t leave the church because of being offended, sinning and forgetting to read a book.  They leave because their trust is compromised.  My trust was compromised when I caught a temple president lying to the patrons in the temple; and then he blamed my brother for telling me the details I needed to know to bust him.  That was the start to my hard-core investigation that lead to this blog

trust

Secondly; he claimed:

The Church is dedicated to transparency and has published precious resources to provide even more context to the story of the restoration. Through the JSPP website, and the gospel topic essays and on LDS.org

Mr. Ballard, please open the financial books for transparency

Mr. Ballard, please open the vault for historians if you believe in transparency, specifically the McLellin papers and Oliver Cowdery’s diary and papers, but I’d love to see the “Mormon Erotica” stored in the vault as well

Mr. Ballard, you are giving a talk on September 11th.  Do you remember what happened on September 11th?  No no, not the planes.  That’s right, the massacre

doyourdutyMMM

That’s right, when LDS members followed their stake president’s orders to “Do their duty” and slaughter 120 men, women and children.  In 2007, the Ensign finally admitted that it wasn’t the Piute indians who committed the act, which is MORE transparent, but to say “Committed to Transparency” means you need to do even more.  You need to admit that the religion deceived members in official materials like the Seminary Manual I learned from.  You need to change the article and remove “Militia” and put the word “Stake Activity” in its place.  You need to be transparent; which means not misdirecting the reader to believe this was a Bundy-style land takeover that Brigham was unaware of; but rather that discussions were made with Brigham and his final order not to do it arrived too late; but he thought about having the people massacred at least.  You need to admit that the church prevented justice for those who committed the heinous act and that Gordon B. Hinkley lied about it in 1999.

Do you see the degree of Hypocrisy of giving a talk  on September 11th claiming full transparency and blaming those who leave the church for being lazy or deceived by Satan while you lie to the faithful?

Well, Mr. Ballard, my family had a talk about your lies afterwords, and my children were offended.  Not offended as in they will leave the church (who leaves because they were offended really) no, offended that you’d lie to them so brazenly.  Offended they didn’t know about the Mountain Meadows Massacre and that the church covered up so much about such a tragic incident.

Mr. Ballard, what I’m going to say next may sound harsh, but I’m just quoting scripture.

MIllstone

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.

prophet who teacheth lies

“the tail is the prophet, the lying teacher” Isaiah 9:15

 

  • 1:55 – He states he is giving his own Epistle. That’s like saying this is canonized scripture, right?
  • 4:55 – Lord has blessed you
  • 6:33 – reminder that sanitation and entertainment is great for us… (no mention of how religion did not contribute to such things)
  • 6:44 – Shout out to Farms
  • 7:20 – Prospering in the land (yay for prosperity gospel)
  • 7:53 – Recommendations for spiritual health
  • 8:20 – Scriptural reference to apostates and those who would pervert the gospel of Christ
  • 9:00 – Reminder that life is black and white, good and evil
  • 9:40 – False prophets mentioned
  • 9:56 – “You have witnessed some of the very elect being deceived”
  • Random discussion of trees
  • 11:55 – “All appearances of being tall and erect in faith, die in faith”. Interesting discussion as he implies the trees shifted away from the water, when in his example the water was poisoned. “Dying trees may imply a rotten water source” could have been the title, and the same example used by exmormons
  • 12:55- old fallacy that reading scriptures, fasting, temple work and praying will protect from apostasy. “Real Intent, without hypocracy and full purpose of heart” no true scottsman fallacy invoked
  • 14:10 – Failing to Work with the poor mentioned as a cause of apostasy… might be that a church that fails its poor is in apostasy too, no?
  • 14:20 – Satan invoked as the reason people fall away; along with “sin and guilt cloud the mind”
  • 15:00 – “Individuals who don’t stay focused on the simple doctrines of the gospel will eventually listen to false teachers and self-declared prophets”
  • Evils listed:
  • Wealth and Entertainment,
  • viewing podcasts and internet sites that raise questions and doubt without being intellectually honest enough to present fully and adequately the lord’s perspective
  • 16:00 – “There is nothing wrong with asking questions about our history, doctrine or practices.”
  • Bishops, Stake presidents, parents, auxiliary leaders – don’t brush the question off, or doubt his dedication to the lord.
  • 17:00 – I’m concerned about people who ask sincere questions being treated as though they are faithless. This is not the Lord’s way
  • We need to do better in responding to every question
  • 17:40 – We may not be able to answer every question about our history, doctrine. We can answer those who are sincere
  • 18:02 – We may not always find satisfying answers to our questions. “Still a place in a religion for faith”.
  • The lord does not require his saints to have advanced degrees in history or doctrine.
  • 18:46 – Even among the first presidency and quorum of twelve apostles there are those who have very different backgrounds and training
  • When I have a question I cannot answer, I often turn to those who can help me.
  • 19:10 – The church has trained scholars who have devoted a lifetime and have come to know our history and the scriptures. These thoughtful men and women provide context
  • 19:44 – The Church is dedicated to transparency and has published precious resources to provide even more context to the story of the restoration. Through the JSPP website, and the gospel topic essays and on LDS.org
  • 20:34 – Casual of listening to and following the Lord’s servants due to proximity to church headquarters
  • Missionary Farewells are a problem
  • 21:50 -We hope also that elaborate open houses will not prevail. No public reception
  • 22:55 – Live beyond their means in an attempt to keep up with neighbors
  • 23:48 – Turn off the social media (to spend time with family)
  • 24:00 – Hold family council.
  • 24:17 – Pokemon Go. He doesn’t understand it, don’t ask him about it, but it causes people to look down at their phones rather than view the beautiful creations of God’s world
  • 25:05 – Tying it to lack of men getting married
  • 25:20 – History filled with persecution.
  • Missionary work emphasized
  • 28:25 – Unprecedented access to educational opportunities. – Caution about learning
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