General Conference October 2012 Review, Saturday Afternoon by Vicky Gilpin

Becoming Goodly parents Elder L Tom Perry

Saturday afternoon sessions open with a talk from Elder L Tom Perry, on becoming goodly parents. He speaks of his appreciation for his own upbringing by his LDS mother and the example set by her.

The LDS Church has a culture of placing high value on families, parents teaching their children the scriptures, praying with them and instilling high moral values. This really is something which i admire about the LDS Church.

Of course the LDS Church has doctrinal reasons for it’s emphasis on family which christians disagree with. Forever familys for instance, although this sounds good, and is something desirable to mankind. Is it what God wants?
The Bible tells us that we should love the Lord with all our hearts, not our families.

Deuteronomy 6:5
And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

And Jesus says our love for our family must be considered as hate, in comparison to our love for him.

Luke 14:26
If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

Elder M Russell Ballard
Be anxiously engaged.

Uses the example of worker bees making honey, throughout his talk to advocate working to make a difference in the world, maybe through one small act of kindness. Collectively working together to make the world a better place. Again this is admirable, we should seek to make a difference in the world in whatever small ways we can.

Elder Larry Echo Hawk, ( of the Seventy )
”Come unto me, oh ye house of Israel”

During his talk, Elder Echo Hawk referenced the introduction and title page of the book of Mormon.

This is from his talk…
‘On the title page I read that it is “written to the Lamanites, who are a remnant of the house of Israel; and also to Jew and Gentile.” In the introduction to the Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, it says that the Lamanites “are among the ancestors of the American Indians’.
I notice Elder Echo hawk, is using a recent copy of the Book of Mormon. From the 2006 edition onwards, the title page to the Book of Mormon was changed, having previously stated, “… all were destroyed except the Lamanites, and they are the principal ancestors of the American Indians.” It now says that the Lamanites were “among the ancestors”. This change is massive, and there are no footnotes or any indication that there was a change made. This change was done quietly, and your average member of the LDS Church will probably not know about it. For over 150 years the LDS Church maintained that Native Americans are all descendants of the Lamanites.

DNA has revealed a total lack of any Semite (Israelite) genetic markers in the Indians in the Americas.

Genetics and the Book of Mormon
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Since the late 1990s and the pioneering work of Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza and others, scientists have developed techniques that attempt to use genetic markers to indicate the ethnic background and history of individual people. The data developed by these mainstream scientists tell us that the Native Americans have very distinctive DNA markers, and that some of them are most similar, among old world populations, to the DNA of people anciently associated with the Altay Mountains area of central Asia. This conclusion from a genetic perspective confirms a large amount of archaeological, anthropological, and linguistic evidence that Native American peoples’ ancestors migrated from Asia at the latest 16,500–13,000 years ago http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetics_and_the_Book_of_Mormon

Elder Echo Hawke as a person or American ancestry himself, says that he felt as though he was reading about his ancestors as he read the Book of Mormon. He reads part of the BOM account of the Lamanites, a people who the Book of Mormon teaches, migrated from Jerusalem to the American continents at around 600BC.

He closes by exhorting that people read the BOM particularly the descendents of the Lamanites ‘wherever you May be.’

Elder Robert C Gay,( of the seventy )
What shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

Beginning with an example from childhood, where by lying about his age, Elder Gay sought after the treasures of this world rather than those of heaven. By this he received his life lesson. He goes on to discuss self justification of sins.

‘With self-justification of petty sins, Satan triumphs. For a bottle of milk, a misspelled name, a mess of pottage, birthrights and inheritances have been traded.’

As a Christian, I agree. If I try to justify to myself something which my conscience tells me I should not do, or that Gods word tells me I should not do, then this is sin. Self justification, telling yourself ‘it’s ok,’ is a slippery slope.

But the LDS Message is not as Christian, (by this I mean biblical) as it might seem.

He states…
‘The Lord loves our righteousness but asks of us continued repentance and submission.’

To understand what is meant by this you have to understand LDS terminology is different to that of Biblical Christianity.

This is from the Book of Mormon…(Alma 22)

“What shall I do that I may be born of God, having this wicked spirit rooted out of my breast, and receive his Spirit[?] … I will forsake my kingdom, that I may receive this great joy.”
‘Do you remember the response the Lord gave the king through His servant Aaron? “If thou wilt repent of all thy sins, and will bow down before God, and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest.”11

If you’re a Christian reading this you may be thinking, ‘that sounds ok, what’s wrong with repenting of all your sins?’

It goes on…

When the king understood the sacrifice required, he humbled and prostrated himself and then prayed, “O God, … I will give away all my sins to know thee.”12

When the King understood what was being asked of him… It’s not the sinners prayer, that is being spoken of here, the king is not being asked simply to confess, own up to all of his sins but to stop sinning! He then says…

I will give away all my sins to know thee.”12

Ok the idea of giving away all of your sins, to stop sinning is a honourable intention. Surely every Christian when they first become a believer has the intention to no longer sin?

Yes , but the difference is it is not a requirement. Our sins are forgiven. The price has been paid by our saviour. We do not maintain our own salvation by our works of righteousness; rather we work because we are saved.

Ephesians 2:8-10 (KJV) 8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

The following is a quote from a well known LDS Book, Titled, Miracle of Forgiveness.
It was written in 1969 by Spencer W. Kimball, he was one of the 12 Apostles at the time of writing and later went on to be president or prophet of the Church…

p324-325
“Your Heavenly Father has promised forgiveness upon total repentance and meeting all the requirements, but that forgiveness is not granted merely for the asking. There must be works-many works-and an all-lout, total surrender, with a great humility and ‘a broken heart and a contrite spirit. It depends upon you weather or not you are forgiven, and when. It could be weeks, it could be years, it could be centuries before that happy day when you have the positive assurance that the Lord has forgiven you. That depends on your humility, your sincerity, your work, or they your attitude.”

And as if that wasn’t bad enough…

P169-170
Old sins return, says the Lord in his modern revelations many people either do not know this or they conveniently forget it. “Go your way and sin no more,” the Lord warned. And again, “… Unto that soul who sinneth shall the former sins return, saith the Lord your God.” ( D&C 82:7)

This is the impossible Gospel of Mormonism. Far removed from the easy yoke which Jesus spoke of.

Matthew 11:28-30 (KJV)
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

And if there is any question in your minds as to weather this is what Elder Gay meant…

“This is the exchange the Savior is asking of us: we are to give up all our sins, big or small, for the Father’s reward of eternal life. We are to forget self-justifying stories, excuses, rationalizations, defence mechanisms, procrastinations, appearances, personal pride, judgemental thoughts, and doing things our way. We are to separate ourselves from all worldliness and take upon us the image of God in our countenances.”

Elder Niel L Anderson
Of the Quorum of the 12 apostles

Writes of the trials that many face in life. He encourages those who seek to follow God, particularly in difficult circumstances, like losing a child, or those that are still seeking a partner and are struggling with temptation. He advises to seek God, to pray, to read the scriptures. To continue attending Church.

He moves on to discuss, ‘Those who want to discredit the Church and destroy faith.’ By way of the Internet.

If you’re a Mormon and you’ve been following our blog posts for a while, or even if your new to us. I hope that you have picked up on the heart behind this ministry. We are not Unbelievers, trying to lead you out of faith into unbelief. We are Christian, believing that you have been sold a lie. That the LDS does not have the ‘restored gospel.’ The original is still very much here, and the gates of Hell did not prevail against it. We operate this ministry in Love. Our heart is to see you receive the truth and to not perish without it.

He states…
“Some of the information about the Church, no matter how convincing, is just not true. In 1985, I remember a colleague walking into my business office in Florida. He had a Time magazine article entitled “Challenging Mormonism’s Roots.” It spoke of a recently discovered letter, supposedly written by Martin Harris, that conflicted with Joseph Smith’s account of finding the Book of Mormon plates.”

I know which letter he is speaking of, it is called the salamander letter.

This is from Wikipedia…

The Salamander Letter was a document created by Mark Hofmann in the early 1980s.
The letter was one of hundreds of documents concerning the history of Latter Day Saint movement that surfaced in the early 1980s. The Salamander Letter presented a view of Latter Day Saint founder Joseph Smith’s life that stood sharply at odds with the commonly accepted version of the early progression of the church Smith established.
Accepted by some document experts and collectors, and rejected by others,[1] the Salamander Letter generated much discussion and debate inside and outside the Latter Day Saint movement. Kenneth W. Rendell lent credence to it by stating that the ink, paper and postmark were all consistent with the period; he concluded, “[T]here is no indication that the document is a forgery.”[2] The document was later demonstrated to be a forgery created by Hoffman, who had been responsible for the “discovery” of many other notable documents. Rendell then recast his conclusion, stating that while there was “the absence of any indication of forgery in the letter itself, there was also no evidence that it was genuine.”[3]

Mark Hoffman tried to sell this letter to several people, including well know critics of Mormonism, Sandra Tanner and her Husband Jerald. The Tanners questioned the letters authenticity and did not buy it from him.

Although I’m sure there will be critics of Mormonism who might spread false information, maybe they’ve been hurt by the church, maybe like Hoffman their trying to make money some how. But I hope not to offend when I say, that we do not need to falsify information from the History of the LDS Church to make it questionable. There is more than enough there already. From Changes to the book of Mormon, a book which should be flawless if it’s supposed origins are correct. To a complete lack of evidence for the people and the belongings of the people, told to have travelled to America around 600BC.

11 thoughts on “General Conference October 2012 Review, Saturday Afternoon by Vicky Gilpin”

  1. Luke 14:26
    If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

    As a father, brother, son & husband I have always found this verse physically sickening, it is cultist teaching at its worst.
    No one can tell me to hate my family in favour of a teacher or even a God, such a person would be evil by definition, a home wrecker, a seditious poisoner of relationships and have no doubt this verse preaches hate, the word in the Greek text is miseo, the root of our English word misery it is unambiguous and precise it means “Hate”.
    Jesus Even reiterates this later

    Luke 12:51-53
    King James Version (KJV)
    51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:

    52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.

    53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

    Sickening.

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    1. Now then Mr Lions long time no chat, I think its safe to say we are not commanded to hate our relatives, the greater context of scripture shows that we are indeed to love our spouse and kids, and respect and obey our parents, there is much biblical material on this as I am sure you well know.

      However the call to follow Christ is a call to put Him above ALL else, with no exception, in comparison to the significance of Christ all things fade in significance, this in the bluntest way possible is what is being communicated here.

      I appreciate from your more secular perspective this will still not impress you so I am not too interested in going there as that is not the purpose of this post. However loving our family is still very much a biblical thing to do.

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      1. Thanks Bob, your good lady did make this quotation in answer to Elder Perry’s comment on eternal families, posing the question “Is this what God wants?” I therefore did think it relevant to point out that going by that quote in the context of the chapter, she is right, God is not interested in families, he wants all the attention and adoration solely (or soul-ey) on himself.
        God in fact seems to find relations a distraction to MEN (and this addressed solely to men ) from the more important task of worshiping him, finishing the address by lumping families in with wealth and possessions all of which must be given up to follow the Lord.
        Point made, I’ll say no more.

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  2. Great commentary Vicky. You have picked out key points and shone a light into some very dark places. You know what you are talking about and have a charitable way of communicating it.

    Oh, Mr Lions, what can I say? You are clever enough to find and explain the original Greek but you haven’t the most basic capacity to understand that Jesus is using hyperbole to make a serious point. These texts are not “preaching hate” as you misrepresent them doing but preaching priorities, as Bobby has clearly explained.

    If you have ever “waited an eternity”, died of embarrassment,” “jumped out of your skin” with fright, or been “hungry enough to eat a horse” you have used hyperbole. If, on that basis, you gained a reputation for having lived forever, died, being sans skin or eating horses I am sure you would object.

    The Bible is rich with literary allusions and devices and a person intent on finding fault and causing mischief can misrepresent Scripture by treating allegory as history, history as teaching and hyperbole as understatement. I am afraid your agenda is showing.

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    1. Simple answer Miketea is that Jesus was not and rarely did indulge in hyperbole, in the rest of the chapter he goes in to detail pointing out that “those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.” Luke 14:33.
      Alternately IF it is hyperbole how can we tell when he is NOT using hyperbole elsewhere? Is not the NT is full of examples of Jesus make extreme and radical statements and commandments?

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  3. I find it remarkable that anyone should understand perfectly what is hyperbole yet claims it is nigh on impossible to identify it in a text. Or is this a special problem for a secularist reading a particular text? In which case, does the problem lie with the reader rather than the text?

    There are good articles on the subject on the internet

    http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=2407

    http://www.tentmaker.org/Biblematters/hyperbole2.htm

    Like

    1. I find it remarkable that someone as obviously educated as you are Miketea, does not know that any text is open to interpretation, close reading and analysis.
      Once a case for hyperbole, irony, sarcasm or the presence of an unreliable narrator has been established for one section of a particular text then all other aspects of the said text must also be considered as prone to the same interpretation and must be viewed as potentially written in the same light.
      This is education, simply applying “a rule of thumb” as and when it is expedient to your own singular point of view is educationally/intellectually dishonest as I am sure you are aware.
      Either all of the words of Jesus in a gospel are potential hyperbole or none of them are, you cannot have it both ways. If they are not hyperbole then they are to be consider as literal.
      Since the instances quoted are apparent in more than one of the synoptic gospel, all three must be considered one way or another as either potentially hyperbolic or literally.

      For example when Jesus said
      “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” in the none synoptic John 14:6 is this literal or allegorical hyperbole?

      Well it must be the latter, since no person can literally be an abstract concept such as truth, so therefore all of the words of Jesus must be considered as possibly allegorical since there is a precedent for his use of the device, and therefore no one can lay claim to the idea that anything Jesus is quoted as saying must be literal truth since it is demonstrably not.
      It all becomes a matter of opinion.
      In this instance you see Jesus as a man making (in any light) a bad taste hyperbolic joke about his being more important to his followers than their own families.
      I see him laying the foundations of a hateful cult, one that among Christians (Mormons especially) has destroyed families, caused untold dissent and even caused wars between opposing Christian denomination is a cause for no good what so ever.

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      1. You seem to be suggesting that once someone has used a metaphor, simile, hyperbole once then everything he says must be interpreted in that way. That is not how the world works. I am not applying a rule of thumb but passing on to you (in your apparent ignorance) how these things are commonly understood among people who take the trouble to understand the culture, language and time of Scripture; that is education.

        You are making a controversy where none exists and, I suspect, for the purpose of making mischief. Are we to assume that this example of making mischief is typical and take everything you say as motivated in the same way? Or are we to use judgement to differentiate when you are up to no good and when you are sincere?

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  4. One other thing, using a metaphor or an allegory is not the same as hyperbole, as I earlier pointed out, Jesus is fond of allegory and uses it a lot, hyperbole he uses rarely if at all other than in examples such as John 14 quoted where he combines the one with the other.

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  5. I am astonished that you should assert Jesus uses hyperbole rarely. He was fond of this idiom form and used it frequently. Some examples are:

    Matt. 19:24; Mark 10:25; Luke 18:25 A camel going through the eye of a needle

    Luke 14:26 To illustrate the point under discussion here

    Matt. 5:29 Chopping off “offensive” body parts

    Mark 4:31 Faith as a mustard seed

    I can only imagine you wrote as you did because it suits you to build up your argument. But, once you realise how common this figure of speech is it becomes obvious whenever it comes up.

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