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Strange Incense

God's commandments are scoped. Some pertain to a specific time and place (example: Limhi fleeing the Lamanites). Some pertain to a specific group of people (example: Levites carrying the ark of the covenant). Some pertain to everyone, always (example: baptism). For some reason, we neglect to respect this pattern in scripture.

God has given many commandments. Here are some:
-The keeping of Hebrew holy days.
-The circumcision of children.
-Offering animal sacrifice according to specific instructions.
-Special grooming and dress rules for men and women.
-...

While I know of no one who reads the story of Limhi and decides that they should move away from any proximate American Indians, I know a surprising number of people who take it upon themselves to live the above listed commandments, which were given either for a specific time and place or to a specific group of people.

Does the Lord care?

Let's start our answer to that question with the topic of strange incense.
Strange Incense The…

Do unto others?

Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn thou not away. (3 Nephi 12:42) Does this mean that Jesus wants us to limitlessly give to all that ask?

In context:

 38 And behold, it is written, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth;

 39 But I say unto you, that ye shall not resist evil, but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also;
 40 And if any man will sue thee at the law and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also;
 41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
 42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn thou not away.
 43 And behold it is written also, that thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thine enemy;
 44 But behold I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you;
 45 That ye may be the children of your Father who is in heaven; for he maketh hi…

My wife's testimony message

This is what my wife said in testimony meeting today:

"I have sure faith in Christ
I don't know yet because real knowledge requires experience
I have always desired to know the Lord
But as of recently I told the Lord I will do what he wants so I can see him. At the time I just didn't know what.
Every blessing is predicated on a set of laws. I ask him to reveal those laws to me.
He told me he wants essentially two things: 1 me to become sanctified. 2. A willingness to sacrifice all earthly things
I told him that I have such a strong desire for this experience that I want him to help get me there the fastest shortest route possible.
I came to understand that there are two ways to progress. We can take the stairs or the elevator.
We can either walk up slowly or we can go the direct fast route. The latter is the only way to ensure we will see the Lord in this life.
I told him I want to take the elevator.
So from that very moment I told him that, the Lord has revealed to me one…

The Telestial Illusion

The truth is things as they really are.

24 And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come; (D&C 93:24)
The Spirit manifests the truth.

13 Behold, my brethren, he that prophesieth, let him prophesy to the understanding of men; for the Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be... (Jacob 4:13)
The truth, when lived, imbues the individual with light and glory.

34 And again, verily I say unto you, that which is governed by law is also preserved by law and perfected and sanctified by the same. (D&C 88:34)
Those who do not live the truth possess a lesser degree of glory.

21 And they who are not sanctified through the law which I have given unto you, even the law of Christ, must inherit another kingdom, even that of a terrestrial kingdom, or that of a telestial kingdom. (D&C 88:21)
Each kingdom has a both a degree of glory and a law, or degree of truth, …

Jesus is a warrior. Be like Jesus.

God appointed Gideon to be a savior to the Israelites. An angel said to Gideon, “The Lord is helping you, and you are a strong warrior.” (Judges 6:12). Yet, Gideon was anything but courageous. He requested sign after sign and trusted in the arm of the flesh.

In contrast to Gideon, Samson was a mighty warrior. Samson gets a bad reputation from those who misunderstand both his mission and the real character of Christ. Samson was a type of Christ in all he did and in all that was done to him, and he lived his life in accordance with God's will. Samson had sufficient faith in God that he was willing to be a warrior for God, even if that meant fighting alone. Samson had no allies: not his family, not his fellow Israelites, not even his wife. Like all holy men, he endured great temporal loss as he yielded to God's instructions to him. Like all holy men, he endured unjust treatment from others when he himself was perfectly just to them. He was betrayed by those who should have loved h…