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Showing posts from May, 2017

I saw Satan fall as lightning

One reason we understand scripture so poorly is that we have so many preconceived notions that contradict the text. Instead of reading the text with a blank slate, we filter what we read through what we think we know. So often, learning is as much about letting go of what you think you know as it is about obtaining new information . This scripture really puzzles people: 6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. 7 And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. (Job 1:6-7) Why is it puzzling? Because Christians are taught that Satan was cast out of heaven before this world was peopled. If Lucifer went from an arch-angel who stood in God's presence to his arch-enemy, how is it that long after Adam, Satan could again stand in God's presence and converse with him like this? The puzzl

Levels of deference to God

Stage 1, fear: "Obey God or else bad things happen." 26 Behold, I set before you this day...a curse; 28 ...if ye will not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known. (Deuteronomy 11) Stage 2, lust: "Obey God and good things will happen." 26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing.... 27 A blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you this day: (Deuteronomy 11) Stage 3, submission: "Obey God even though bad things happen." 17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. 18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up. (Daniel 3) Stage 4, love: "Obey God by not acting in absence of his command." 1 O that I were an a

Conquering depression, addiction, and more

We are on this earth to conquer all things. Many (all?) of us struggle with sins of the flesh: emotional issues, physical issues, mental issues. These issues provide obstacles to happiness. Solving them is not a matter of taking something away. They are symptoms of a lack of truth, not the presence of something extra. The world tries to fix these issues with chemicals, counseling, and sophisticated behaviors. None of these things actually fixes the problem. The solution is to learn the truth whose lack causes the condition. The truth is hard, and few want to accept it. They prefer to remain in the dark, because they think it is safer/happier. The happiness God provides is constant and independent of environment or situation. The happiness the world provides is fleeting, situational, and superficial. A man or woman of God can have everything in his life stripped away from him and remain happy. A man or woman of God can witness extreme suffering in others and, though overcome with comp

Tests come on levels

The other day I was praying and thanking God for his grace in withholding certain things from me. I trust God fully. He only does what he does out of love for us. His ways are higher than our ways, and he only works for our benefit. If he withholds something, it is because he loves us. There is a connection between how pure our hearts are and how much of heaven he can give to us. Where our heart is determines how much he can open the blessings of heaven to us without condemning us. When we have access to more than we are prepared to receive, we will sin against it, and in doing so the justice of God will require our suffering to atone for turning against the light. It is merciful for him to withhold what we are not prepared for. We are here to overcome all things. God sends us tests from time to time. The tests aren't for him. He already knows our hearts. The tests are for us. Too often (always?) we think we are further along than we are. Tests show us where we really are, some

Seek Ye This Jesus Draft

All- Thank you for your proofreading. The current version of the draft is below. The individual chapters are easier for you to read, but very time consuming to keep refreshing. I'll keep it here for a while longer, then I will publish a pdf and print copy. Seek Ye This Jesus Rob Smith And now, I would commend you to seek this Jesus of whom the prophets and apostles have written, that the grace of God the Father, and also the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost, which beareth record of them, may be and abide in you forever. Amen. (Ether 12:41) Copyright 2017, Robert Smith. All rights reserved. This book may not be reproduced in any way without the written consent of the author. However, free electronic copies are available at Book 1: Repent and Come to the Lord Come Unto Jesus                                                                                  2 Why Now?