"The CES Letter"

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VioletFire
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Joined: 17 Apr 2018, 13:01

Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by VioletFire » 23 Apr 2018, 13:40

I wish we could make room for JS and others to have been wrong about important doctrinal issues (polygamy) while still being the right person at the right time for God to accomplish the task of setting up the church

Roy do you think it's possible for JS to have been wrong about polygamy and still be a prophet? Also how is the world do I get people's names to appear when I quote them? Sorry I'm new at this.

Anyway back to the CES letter. I was one of those people that hadn't really done any research and had heard things here and there when I read it. I feel like it rocked me, but also I didn't love the tone of Runnel's letter. It felt antagonistic. I agree that many of fair mormon's arguments are weak. It's always good to look at both sides though. I'm new here and new to this middle mormon way, but I think if you talk about it with others I would be careful to approach it as trying to understand rather than accusing the church of lying (like Runnels approach).

Curt Sunshine
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Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by Curt Sunshine » 23 Apr 2018, 14:03

Many Prophets of whom we have record had something that could be seen as a prophetic disqualification - and the "greatest" often had the worst. That is true especially of those who were founding figures. Noah got drunk and was raped by his daughter; Moses murdered a man and then let his ego take personal credit for a divine miracle; David arranged for a man to be killed in order to marry his wife (I know, king, not Prophet, but still...); Nephi killed a man to get a book; even Jesus went full lion tamer mode in the temple. Ghandhi had some serious sexual issues; Winston Churchill was a mean drunk; MLK, Jr. had infidelity problems; etc.

The type of personality it takes to start a movement that lasts appears to be someone who could be described in the following terms:

Their name will be had for good and evil.

I take that statement about Joseph Smith more literally than most, and I don't think it disqualifies him from being a prophet in the scriptural sense.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

Roy
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Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by Roy » 24 Apr 2018, 13:54

VioletFire wrote:
23 Apr 2018, 13:40
Roy do you think it's possible for JS to have been wrong about polygamy and still be a prophet?
I suppose it depends on how you define prophet. The traditional Mormon definition is one who carries messages and makes announcements for God. I find it difficult to imagine that God would sit down with JS or transmit instructions to JS and would somehow neglect to add a quick blurb about "only have one wife at a time". Therefore, according to that definition if JS was wrong about such an explosive and potentially devastating an issue as polygamy, it may be easy to conclude that JS was not a prophet.

Curt makes a great point that with such a narrow view of what a prophet perhaps nobody in history would ever qualify.

However, Perhaps JS was more of a theological explorer, boldly going (Christopher Columbus style) into the uncharted theological wilderness. Perhaps, Like Christopher Columbus, JS felt a calling and a burning conviction that he was being led on his journey by God. Perhaps God (with perfect foreknowledge) could use such a man as a tool to do a job without necessarily endorsing all that man's actions, statements, and theological blunders.

If we can apply this much more messy, complex, and human definition of "prophet" to JS, then yes - Joseph could be wrong about polygamy and still be a prophet.

I find this second definition of prophet to be much more defensible ... although it is pretty much anathema at church.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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On Own Now
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Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by On Own Now » 24 Apr 2018, 15:14

DarkJedi wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 20:42
nibbler wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 13:50
DarkJedi wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 11:33
There is a FINALLY a new adult SS curriculum due out next year. I am expecting it to be a huge departure from the current very old curriculum, based much more on Teaching in the Savior's Way, ...
YASS!!!!
DarkJedi wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 11:33
...and much more in line with the new PH/RS curriculum.
Wait, does that mean we'll take turns reading conference talks during SS?

;) :angel:
Let me rephrase. Much more like PH/RS is supposed to be.
My only lament about the new SS curriculum is that it will begin next year, in replacement of NT. For me, NT is the one and only year of SS that I attend somewhat regularly. I think a study based on the NT is useful. Certainly, Church Members, including myself, could benefit from more exposure to it. I worry a bit that the lesson topics will be "Obedience", "Tithing", "Sabbath Day Observance", and "Be Missionaries!" replacing current NT SS lesson titles like "Take My Yoke Upon You, and Learn of Me", "Who is My Neighbor", "Be Ye Reconciled to God", and "I Can Do All Things through Christ".
"Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another." --Romans 14:13

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DarkJedi
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Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by DarkJedi » 24 Apr 2018, 16:28

On Own Now wrote:
24 Apr 2018, 15:14
DarkJedi wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 20:42
nibbler wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 13:50


YASS!!!!



Wait, does that mean we'll take turns reading conference talks during SS?

;) :angel:
Let me rephrase. Much more like PH/RS is supposed to be.
My only lament about the new SS curriculum is that it will begin next year, in replacement of NT. For me, NT is the one and only year of SS that I attend somewhat regularly. I think a study based on the NT is useful. Certainly, Church Members, including myself, could benefit from more exposure to it. I worry a bit that the lesson topics will be "Obedience", "Tithing", "Sabbath Day Observance", and "Be Missionaries!" replacing current NT SS lesson titles like "Take My Yoke Upon You, and Learn of Me", "Who is My Neighbor", "Be Ye Reconciled to God", and "I Can Do All Things through Christ".
I hadn't really thought about it that way, OON, although topic based lessons are certainly possible. It's actually how I prefer to study the scriptures. I totally agree the NT is of great value and I study from it far more than any other of the canonized works (and almost none from the PoGP). I would fear that topics-based lessons would over focus on the BoM, which seems to be a tendency in the church (at least where I live) and with some topics it would be very easy to cross the line into pseudo-doctrine and false doctrine. If the new curriculum is similar to the current youth curriculum in content (as well as methods) it would indeed turn out to be topics based. Many of those lessons contain no references to the NT.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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Ann
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Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by Ann » 25 Apr 2018, 01:06

longbottom wrote:
13 Apr 2018, 08:39


It's an entirely liberating concept to me to "own my own decisions", and how I have felt about my new direction itself if a strong testimony-builder that there are more ways than one to grow close to God....
I agree. And it was so strange to have the distinct impression and comfort of God waiting with open arms. Almost a, “finally, you’re here. Let’s see what’s next for you....”
"Preachers err by trying to talk people into belief; better they reveal the radiance of their own discovery." - Joseph Campbell

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." - Marcel Proust

"Therefore they said unto him, How were thine eyes opened? He answered and said unto them, A man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed my eyes...." - John 9:10-11

Roy
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Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: "The CES Letter"

Post by Roy » 25 Apr 2018, 08:51

Ann wrote:
25 Apr 2018, 01:06
“finally, you’re here. Let’s see what’s next for you....”
beautiful!
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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