The Church is True… which Church?

Someone proposed an idea that caught my fancy.  When members say “The Church is True” the question “Which church, the one Joseph Restored or the modern one”? can be baffling for members.  And yet the two are very very different religions.   Here is a list of changes that one /could/ wave away by stating “it was changed by revelation” but for which the member would need to cite the revelation that allowed the change for each one; as I haven’t found a revelation for anything mentioned here:

Joseph’s Day
1) New Scripture is added by prophet from ancient records continuously
2) Prophet and seer is defined by ownership and use of a seerstone.  It is displayed and used regularly
3) 12 Apostles, Prophet and first presidency are not apostles.  “First and Second Elder” are positions
4) First Vision referred to Angel Moroni or Nephi’s visit
5) Council of the Fifty handled political matters
6) New revelations and changes to doctrine announced by prophet
7) Common Consent is able to over rule even the prophet’s counsel and revelation. Sustaining is more like a vote.
8) Black people are forbidden from ever holding the priesthood in a series of revelations and speeches.  Black people not from Africa can hold priesthood anyway (Samoa)
9) Polygamy is required in this life to enter celestial kingdom.  3 wife minimum is taught enough that it is talked about all the way to Heber J. Grant
10) Word of Wisdom is optional.  Joseph drank alcohol, kept a bar, drank coffee, and wine the morning he was killed.  Pioneers took coffee at Brigham’s demand
11) One quorum of seventy
12) Bishops paid out of tithing for full time work until 1920.  Missions are not paid
13) Speculation and debate happen at general conference, including arguments
14) Saints are learning new information constantly from the prophet including locations of lost 10 tribes, and space travel
15) Tithing was based on “Interest” not on income. Wealthier paid more, poor paid less
16) Tithing and offerings stayed in stakes were donated
17) Gifts of the spirit were manifested openly in meetings (Speaking in tongues, for example)
18) Wine used for sacrament
19) Women promised to have their own priesthood
Modern Day
* New scripture is no longer translations of ancient records Seerstone is locked in vault.
* Becoming a prophet is defined by length of church service and decisions by Quorum of the 12
*15 apostles, Prophet and first presidency MUST have been apostles
* First Vision refers to Father and Son in Sacred Grove in 1820
* Apostles or PR department speak off the cuff
PR Department handles release of new doctrine
* Everyone raises their hand to sustain, very few times does anyone oppose.  If they do it is ignored.
* Black people are given priesthood through secret meeting.  Revelation is never published.  Official declaration mentions revelation but does not cite it.
* Polygamy can be in the next life (which is contrary to Brigham’s statements on the matter).  Maybe the flaming sword was just for show?
* Word of Wisdom required for temple attendance.  Church does not admit to owning wineries in St. George, or owning majority of State Liquor licenses
* 5 quorums of the seventy
* Bishops and Stake presidents are not paid.  Mission President and above are paid
* Every talk is correlated being changed in post-script if the talk varies from approved topics
* Lessons are the same 72 correlated topics year after year after year. Prophet rarely says new things
* Tithing based on income 10% of gross a lot more for poor and less of a percentdisposable income for wealthy
* Tithing is all sent to Church Headquarters
*Gifts of the spirit freak members out. Limited to testimony baring and maybe some healing in the home (not by wome
* Water used for sacrament
* Women excommunicated for asking about priesthood
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Last edited by Mithryn on March 27, 2015 at 3:44 pm

11 Responses to The Church is True… which Church?

  1. DS says:

    Seems like a great list, do you have citations for everything on Joseph day’s list?

    I am not being snarky, I really would like to read about the points you bring up, any citations you can share would be helpful.

  2. David says:

    On point #18, didn’t church of Joseph’s day use water since D&C 27?

  3. David says:

    Can you please give your source for #19 on Joseph’s day? I’d love to see where women were promised the priesthood.

    • Mithryn says:

      The following sources all point to the idea that women were promised the priesthood (I’ll save the actual promise for last):

      Thirza Cahoon, Lois Cutler and Phebe Woodworth were “…taken into the order of the priesthood”
      – Brigham Young Diary October 29, 1843

      “You shall be blessed with your portion of the priesthood which belongeth to you that you may be set apart for your anointing and your [endowment]”
      – July 28, Hyrum Smith’s Patriarchal blessing of Lenora Taylor

      Jane Bicknell Young was endowed and “entered into the quorum of the priesthood”
      – Diary of William H. Clayton LDS Archives for February 3rd 1844

      Joseph F. Smith confirms that women can give healing blessings and that things have not changed
      -letter from Joseph F. Smith in 1910 preserved in the minutes of the logan stake relief society

      “You will find Mary [mother of Jesus] was of the Royal Priesthood which is after the order of God”
      – Heber C. Kimball, JoD 6:125

      Bruce R. McConkie and Marion D. Hanks arrived. Hanks anointed the prophet’s head. The apostle invited the prophet’s son and also his wife, Camilla, to place her hands on her husban’s head.

      “That was unusual” his son Edward Kimball later wrote, “It seemed right to me, but I would not have felt free to suggest it on my own because of an ingrained sense that the ordinance is a priesthood ordinance”
      1979 blessing to Spencer W. Kimball while recovering from Brain Surgery.

      I think though that this quote has credence:

      “Emma was the one to whom the female priesthood was first given”
      – June 1868, Sidney Rigdon (Then disaffected from Brigham Young)

      In conjunction with

      “I never like to hear a sermon without hearing something of the Prophet [Joseph Smith] for he gave us everything, every order of the priesthood… and he wanted to make us… a kingdom of priestesses”
      – Bathsheba W. Smith, 4th General Relief Society President and wife of a First Presidency member

      And finally, the clincher:

      “…gave a lecture on the pries[t]hood shewing [sic] how the Sisters would come in possession of the privileges & blessings & gifts of the priesthood”
      – Joseph Smith April 8, 1842

  4. John E says:

    2 – Hiram Page used his seerstone and Joseph then revealed only he could receive revelation for the whole church.
    4 – First Vision was clarified by Joseph in 1838.
    8 – The priesthood ban started during Brigham.
    10 – Hadn’t heard that they owned state liquor licenses. Interesting. Source?
    11 – D&C provides guidances for additonal quorums when a quorum reaches its numbers limit. Church grew. More seventy needed.
    13 – Critics of the church love the old-time debates/theorizing so they could trot it all out as church doctrine. “You don’t even know your own doctrine! You believe there are men on the moon dressed like Quakers!” I get that correlation has ruined a lot of our philosophy/speculation but I also understand why they did it.

    Otherwise yeah, cool list.

    • Mithryn says:

      I’m not sure why you think #2 is relevant. The complaint here is that most members didn’t know about the stone until the resent Essay; and that there is zero indication that current “seers” use seerstones.

      4 – Clarified by Joseph, yes but he got the dates wrong for his sister’s birth, when the revival happened, and when the Presbyterian church his mother attended existed (all would require the first vision to occur in 1824). Did Joseph not know his own history? Was he exceptionally forgetful? Did he intend to misdirect people?

      8 – The priesthood ban starting during Brigham does NO GOOD at explaining why the LDS church is the same yesterday, today and forever. The claim to being the true successor of Joseph Smith must include that Brigham also was inspired, else go join the Community of Christ, the Church of Christ, temple lot, or some other offshoot.

      10 – Sources; Google “LDS owns state liquor licenses.” It’s been in the news and a big deal for at least as long as I’ve been alive. Here is a good start:

      11- D&C does indeed provide guidance; however the format has changed. Church Patriarch is no longer a calling, for example. It would be nice to have that clarification about the definition of a Seventy spelled out so you didn’t have local seventies wandering around; as well as high-ranking seventies that mean “Regional district manager”.

      13 – The question is “why did God allow speculation” and “Why is it now forbidden”. You “Get why they did it”, do you also know that David O. McKay called it unrighteous dominion? He only allowed it to occur because he thought God would correct it. So if you “know why they did it” why doesn’t it disturb you that they did do it, and that it was done without revelation.

    • Millicent says:

      Well done artclie that. I’ll make sure to use it wisely.

  5. EMC says:

    Can you post your sources for this one:

    “Church does not admit to owning wineries in St. George, or owning majority of State Liquor licenses”.


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