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Showing posts from October, 2016

Teaching God's Commandments

Teaching God’s Commandments in the Home Sacrament Talk given by Bob Sonntag on 10.16.2016, posted with his permission

If the scriptures are adamant about one point, it is that all of us must come unto Christ and be saved. If they say a second thing, it is that there is only one very specific path back to Christ’s presence. Romans 10 says that “faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” as preached by a messenger sent by God. If someone is not sent by God, or if they deviate from God’s word, their message cannot produce faith, no matter how zealously it is believed. In Mosiah 4 we find that the miraculous response to the repentance of King Benjamin’s people came “because of the exceeding faith which they had in Jesus Christ who should come, according to the words which King Benjamin had spoken unto them.” Saving faith could only come “according to the words” given by God. Christ said of his commandments given in the Sermon on the Mount: Whosoever, therefore, shall break one…

Unbelief

Repentance ought to apply to anyone who is not yet perfect. If it does not, such a person is by definition damned because they are not progressing toward perfection. Repentance does not apply only to unpopular sins.

Unbelief is a condition where an individual rejects or refuses to seek out a particular truth because it clashes with a tradition they hold. This is not the same as willful rebellion, which is disobeying what you know is true.

There are many doctrines taught in absolute plainness in the scriptures. Yet, many don't know about them, and most of those who are informed of them disbelieve.

And now I, Nephi, cannot say more; the Spirit stoppeth mine utterance, and I am left to mourn because of the unbelief, and the wickedness, and the ignorance, and the stiffneckedness of men; for they will not search knowledge, nor understand great knowledge, when it is given unto them in plainness, even as plain as word can be. (2 Nephi 32:7) Knowledge is necessary for salvation. A man mus…

A Parable and Analogy About Rebaptism Into the LDS Church

The parable of the radioactive food There was once a land comprised of steep, rocky slopes with the exception of one valley. The valley was small but contained sufficient fertile land to support enough farms to feed the people. It also featured a large lake, adjacent to which was a nuclear power plant supplying power to the people. For a while, existence in that land was idyllic. Those in the mountains and in the plain alike enjoyed the necessities and comforts of life. One day, the plant's containment tanks developed a significant leak. For some reason, very few seemed to notice. Some left the valley for the safety of the hills. Most went on living their lives in blissful ignorance. With each passing day, the output of the plant declined* as the leak at the plant continued. Soon, people living in the valley started developing cancer and dying. As the radiation levels increased, more and more people started to become aware of the problem at the plant. Many moved, but others remai…

One Who Brings Zion Must Be Redundant

True messengers must avoid priestcraft. However, it is not enough to avoid priestcraft. One must also avoid idolatry. Certain practices encourage idolatry, while others discourage it. Regardless to the response of others, true messengers must no only avoid control, they must also actively seek to make themselves redundant.

Every true messenger's goal is to bring individuals to Christ and to make themselves redundant. You cannot do the former without accomplishing the latter, because if others need you in order for them to access God, they do not yet know him themselves. Once you being to attempt to access God yourself, you do not rely on anyone else to get to him (though you can still benefit from additional light and truth through them).

John the Baptist's greatest hope was for his disciples to leave him and follow Christ. There were, of course, many who did not do that. There will always be those content with less than they could have. True messengers may very well have to m…

If the Book of Mormon Were a Choose Your Own Adventure: A Profile of Current LDS

The story of Lehi's departure from Jerusalem is the first in the Book of Mormon. The very first narrative verse in the Book reads:

For it came to pass in the commencement of the first year of the reign of Zedekiah, king of Judah, (my father, Lehi, having dwelt at Jerusalem in all his days); and in that same year there came many prophets, prophesying unto the people that they must repent, or the great city Jerusalem must be destroyed. (1 Nephi 1:4)
This is our opportunity to liken this story unto ourselves.

This verse says that Lehi heard of prophets teaching that the Jews had turned away from God, needed to repent, and that if they did not, God would destroy them. However, how would he have recognized them as such? That they were not the duly appointed religious leaders is evident from the fact that when Lehi later pronounces the same message, the people try to kill him (1 Nephi 1:18-20).

Decision Point 1
So, if you became aware of random people--people with no LDS leadership cred…