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Quotes from Heber C. Kimball and commentary

During my daily devotion today (11/11/22), God frequently recalls to my mind something from thoughts past, just as he promised to do for all of us.

I have a firm conviction that whatever God feels inclined to say to me in the moment is more important than anything I felt inclined to think about. True to this principle, whenever he begins speaking to me, I stop whatever I am doing--to the point of interrupting someone if they are speaking to me and excusing myself--and I go and drink the cup he has placed before me until it is empty.

This morning, while traversing a deep stack of sequential thoughts, I was told to look up a quote from Heber C. Kimball. I was not given a great many words to go off of, but thanks to google, it was merely a time-consuming but not impossible task. So often, we expect God to make things easy for us, not realizing how much we cut ourselves off from by keeping the bar so low. For one thing, he uses the carrot of what we can comprehend to lead us to blessings we do not comprehend until after we have obtained them, and in this particular application of the principle, uses our search for things we know to look for to bring our eyes to things we do not know to look for. In many cases (but, for me, not this one) he can't tell us what to look for, because we would not have sufficient desire for that idea or thing or person or experience. 

Always remember that what is good is what God wants for us and has for himself, not what we want and certainly not what we have--both of which are dross, no matter how much they shine in the dim light and poor vision we presently enjoy [1].

In the course of my searching the internet for this quote, here are some gems that carry valuable quantities of water at this point in my sojourn in the desert [2]. I share them here because they contain valuable truth that, through the payment of Heber's faith and my own payment of time, I have the right to convey to you, while I still have not completed the payment required to share them with you in more focused context and perhaps greater clarity in the books I am preparing for publication:

"To refer again to what I know, what I have seen and experienced in my travels and my associations with the Prophet of the living God, I will remark that you have here with you a few of us that have traveled with him from the beginning, and we know his trials and sufferings, and we know that the greatest torment he had and the greatest mental suffering was because this people would not live up to their privileges. There were many things he desired to reveal that we have not learned yet, but he could not do it. He said sometimes that he felt pressed upon and as though he were pent up in an acorn shell, and all because the people did not and would not prepare themselves to receive the rich treasures of wisdom and knowledge that he had to impart. He could have revealed a great many things to us if we had been ready; but he said there were many things that we could not receive because we lacked that diligence and faithfulness that were necessary to entitle us to those choice things of the kingdom." (Source)

I'm not sure anyone believes what I have taught. But I do know that if I told you everything God has told me, not one of you would believe me. Not one. Not yet. Joseph Smith withheld much of what he knew because he knew he would be killed for teaching it. I have zero fear of this, for several reasons. [3] I'm not holding back any of the things I know for any reason but one: God has told me not to reveal anything until I have the time and circumstances to lay out a sufficient argument to believe it. The more important the truth, the more important this principle is to follow. He told me this is why he didn't reply to Herod's questions, and only replied to some of Pilate's. Some things require much more space for such an argument than others.

The time will come when many believe all I do, but they will require far greater evidences than I have. Unfortunately, God will provide those evidences. I say unfortunately for two reasons. First, the blessings of faith are commensurate with the degree of faith. The greater the quantity and plainness of information given, and the more experiential (as opposed to logical) the reasons supporting it, the less blessings the living of that information can provide. So, it is unfortunate that so many will skim off so much of what they could have otherwise had because they are so obdurate in their willingness to believe and do what they have sufficient reasons to believe and do. Second, those evidences will primarily consist of "fire"--incrementally increasing exposure to how things really are, which is to say the terrible chaos of reality, or put another way, the terror of living without God in a world where he begins withdrawing the gracious and miraculous suspension of natural consequences in order to grant us time to learn of him and repent. He will show you the value of what he offers by exposing you to the consequences of not having it.

"Some of you would like me to present the truth clothed in a fine dress and with hoops rather than that I should present it stark naked;" (Source)

I have often contemplated how naked my presentation of the truth is. I know very well that there are only few who can receive the truth in this way, just as I know I have not yet met anyone who could receive it the way I have. The job of every teacher is not merely to repeat the truth in the same way they heard it, but rather to present what they know in ways that are accessible to those who would not receive it the way they did.

God has not designed me to make delicate clothing or intricate fine jewelry. He has forged me in hot fire and shaped and strengthened me by repeatedly striking me with powerful blows against an unyielding anvil. I am a weapon, a sword, in the Hebrew sense of the word, which includes what we think of in English, but also includes the sense of a chisel: a tool for shaping rocks and gemstones. There are other swords, and there are sewing needles, and there are sanding blocks, and there are magnifying glasses, and so on.

When God commanded Moses to build the tabernacle, he raised up people to supply the materials in various states of completion, and he raised up people capable of performing each of the tasks necessary. Moses had a work, Aaron and his sons had a work, and each of the artisans had a work. They were all necessary, and they were all different. God will raise up everyone needed to do what he needs done.

The offense experienced by so many to what I teach is a feature, not a bug. It is funny that so many assume that their experience of offense necessarily indicts the person by whom they are offended. Offense is directional, but experiencing it does not indicate whose fault it is. Anyone who was offended by Jesus was the one who was at fault, and so it is with anyone offended by the truth, no matter who states it.

The offense of my teaching repels the people who would drain the limited resources intended for those who can make greater use of the full initial content of the material than they can. When I experience a person or set of people reaching further than their obedience merits, I help save them from undue harm by helping them see darkness in themselves that they have blinded themselves to through self-delusion. A priest must help people distinguish between the sacred and profane, and that is at least as important to do on the inside as it is on the outside.

"The office of an apostle is to tell the truth, to tell what he knows."  (Source)

Here I disagree with Heber, or at least will expand what he said to make it more clear and true: The office of an apostle is to live the truth as far as he knows it. Or, put better, I think: The office of an apostle is to teach the truth as far as he lives it. This is a truth I regard as precious, and I do not know that anyone else knows or has taught on it. I was planning on waiting until I published a book on the topic of teaching to reveal this, but I will reveal it now, and you can derive as much benefit from it early as you have faith to receive and live. One thing that should be plain to you: under this definition, I'm not sure anyone today who claims to be an apostle actually is one, because they don't live what they teach, and there are and will be many who do not claim to be apostles, and yet are, and some substantially so. The office of an apostle is to represent Jesus by being like him, and the value of an apostle is the degree to which he is like Jesus. An apostle differs from a teacher because anyone can be a teacher through merely stating something that is true. One can be an apostle only by living what you teach. There is special power in this, for reasons that exceed the scope of this entry, but suffice it to say that the sincerity of a teacher is a gateway for the Holy Ghost and all power that it carries.

"You know me, and then again you do not know me. You do not know who Heber C. Kimball is, or you would do better. You do not know yourselves, do you? Then how can you expect to know me?" (Source)

There is a lot I have to say about this one, but I do not have time to say it. Replace "Heber C Kimball" with "Jesus Christ," and reread that quote as if he said it. You can get a lot out of that. Here are some questions to ask:

- What is the relationship between knowing Jesus and knowing ourselves?

- Do you know yourself? How would you know you do? What evidence might exist if you didn't? If you don't know yourself, how can you come to do so?

- Is it possible to know someone, and yet not know them? What would the hallmarks of this be?

- What is the connection between knowing someone and being like them?

Well, I found my quote, and I've spent far too much time on this post. Until next time.

[1] - We are like the granny who unknowingly adopts a wild opossum as a cat.

[2] - Like Abraham, who was exactly on course to receive the fulfillment of promises God made to him as he wandered through the land God had given him, in spite of outward appearance of the opposite, and not like the Israelites, who wandered for 40 years in the desert until all those who would not rise up to the land promised through Moses died off.

[3] - It is possible to live in such a way that death would be a welcome relief. That is a phase which all who will drink deeply of the living water Jesus provides reach. There are stages after that, one of which is the point where you beg God to keep you here so that you can make some contribution to the benefit of his children. But in that, your love is not for life, but for the eternal life you live in pouring our your whole soul to God through pouring out your whole soul to any person that will receive it, to the extent that they will receive it, and to the extent to which it benefits them. This is the point John the Revelator reached before the Lord's ascension. And, of course, it is possible for God to promise a man that others will not be permitted to kill him, as he did to Ammon in the Book of Mormon.