the church history

Public forum for those seeking support for their experience in the LDS Church.
keepswimmin
Posts: 19
Joined: 15 May 2014, 16:43

the church history

Post by keepswimmin » 20 May 2014, 02:12

Does anyone read about it? How does it set with you? I'm feeling a bit betrayed.. it has some prettt dark things in my opinion and general authority writes it off as we aren't perfect? I'm feeling quite confused and lied to about how inspired our church really is. Have any of you here struggled with this? Any advice other than pray about it?

User avatar
DarkJedi
Posts: 7219
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: the church history

Post by DarkJedi » 20 May 2014, 03:18

Most, if not all, of us here have at least some questions about church history. For some it's the main issue, for others it's less important. I fall in the latter group. I do agree with the church leaders who excuse some of it as human error or foible, however I also believe there is stuff that was just plain made up, wrong, etc. Since I don't believe most prayers are answered, praying about it is a non-answer for me. Like other things, we all need to come to our own middle way on history. One of the questions I ask myself is how whatever it is affects the gospel. Does it change our doctrine? If not it's can be ignored completely. If so, I evaluate the doctrine and see where I stand on it. Others have different approaches and I'm sure they will contribute.
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."

My Introduction

User avatar
NewLight
Posts: 148
Joined: 04 Feb 2014, 05:18

Re: the church history

Post by NewLight » 20 May 2014, 04:51

I fall into the former group that DJ references -- the history for me was/is a BIG deal and the primary source of my faith crisis. Let me explain why though since it has little to do with the actual history itself. In my situation it was more about the deception (intentional or not) that went along with the church's official version of its history.

Honesty and integrity have played a very important part of my life and the emotions that I experienced when I learned of the truth made me feel very violated (I've included a link to my introduction earlier this year where you can get the gory details). I would have much preferred hearing that Joseph had a "spiritual experience" in the grove and that by some accounts it was "this" or others, "that" rather than the black and white version offered as the complete truth.

Now, as far as where I have landed... I am more prayerful about what I read and hear. This has helped me, so I am one of the ones who would advocate for that type of approach. I draw on the Spirit to let me know what I hear from the church leadership is what I should be following or not, so I feel it has helped me align more to live the true gospel and a Christ-like life. It has been liberating for me and a positive step, though I am sure that TBMs would beg to differ. I know I ruffled a few feathers with some of my comments in High Priests last Sunday on lesson 10 from the Joseph Fielding Smith manual about truth. :thumbup:

keepswimmin
Posts: 19
Joined: 15 May 2014, 16:43

Re: the church history

Post by keepswimmin » 20 May 2014, 04:56

I guess with how pure I was under the impression that it was.. I feel like its made up now and our current leaders have just become perfected in their speech.. if that makes sense? One part of me trusts todays leaders but another part of me feels silly and lied to. I have fears of turning away because of temple covenants but I fear staying because from facts I've read I don't feel truth. Going to church every sunday only stresses me out and I feel guilty missing because than everyone wan ts to know what's going on.

keepswimmin
Posts: 19
Joined: 15 May 2014, 16:43

Re: the church history

Post by keepswimmin » 20 May 2014, 05:03

NewLight.. what are your thoughts on earning your salvation through works and not faith? I never realized our church focuses alot on that which is something surfacing for me.. isn't that why Jesus was sent? To atone for oir sins? We will never be peefect so why do we try so hard to be and why are learning symbolic gestures keys into heaven? I'm a little baffled.

User avatar
nibbler
Posts: 4452
Joined: 14 Nov 2013, 07:34
Location: Ten miles west of the exact centre of the universe

Re: the church history

Post by nibbler » 20 May 2014, 07:58

I think it's important to analyze why we got to where we are with church history. Here's a few thoughts that occur to me, they are all opinion:

I believe people are imperfect, very imperfect. The characters in church history are no different from you and me in that regard. I like to imagine just how bad I would goof things up if I were placed in similar circumstances.

Without naming names some time ago church leaders decided it was best to only present the faith promoting side of church history. I believe that they did this with the best of intentions. I'm guessing that they felt like including the foibles in the narrative might cause some people to be led astray, impede the process of developing a testimony in important events pertaining to the restoration due to the imperfections of the people participating in said events, then there's de mortuis nil nisi bonum (culturally we only talk about the good aspects of the deceased), or some similar justification. Let's also not forget that some leaders may not be up to date on the latest version of church history, they simply parrot the version of history that they know.

Unfortunately this decision robbed us of something very important, the human element. I think it's helpful to see people struggle. Why? If these important figures in church history struggled then it's okay for me to struggle too. It's also an example. They make a connection with deity despite their shortcomings, perhaps I can use their example to do likewise. I think (lots of "I think" in this post) that the decision also created an environment where it's easier to idolize people, imperfect people. That's just a setup for disillusionment.

Some may look at the situation and see a deliberate attempt by leadership to hide truth out of fear. Fear that leadership will lose power or control, fear that the authority of their office will be diminished, or fear that the truth will make people run for the hills. They might not be incorrect in this assumption.

I view the situation as mostly being the result of mistakes made by imperfect leaders with good intentions; imperfect leaders with good intentions in the more recent past controlling the story of other imperfect leaders with good intentions in the distant past. I believe that some of the issue is the result of imperfect leaders with selfish intentions but I view it as the lesser contributor.

BTW, I can see the ship turning. Maybe the leaders see the bad fruits of telling a whitewashed version of history, maybe they've got their backs against the wall. Either way I see a more positive direction. It will take time to bear fruit.
The wound is the place where the light enters you.
— Rumi

User avatar
DarkJedi
Posts: 7219
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: the church history

Post by DarkJedi » 20 May 2014, 08:41

keepswimmin wrote:NewLight.. what are your thoughts on earning your salvation through works and not faith? I never realized our church focuses alot on that which is something surfacing for me.. isn't that why Jesus was sent? To atone for oir sins? We will never be peefect so why do we try so hard to be and why are learning symbolic gestures keys into heaven? I'm a little baffled.
I know you asked this, but this is the type of stuff I tend to have more issues with than history. These questions are historical only in how they got to be doctrine of the church.

I do wholeheartedly believe that we must live the second great commandment and that is the work we must do. I do not believe that those works gain us salvation, though, I believe salvation was earned and given to us by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ - and that is the thing I must do to to be saved, believe in him and believe him. I do believe some church teachings focus too heavily on the works part (keeping the commandments, especially) and too little on the grace part. I actually believe "be ye therefore perfect" as a statement of something that will happen (through Christ) as opposed to a commandment. While I do believe it is important to do good, I think that attempting perfection is futile and only causes us guilt and stress as opposed to the joy we find in sincere service. I firmly believe that all of the symbolism, from baptism through the temple, is for us only and is nothing more than symbols and I think none of the symbolism is required to enter into heaven.
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."

My Introduction

User avatar
kinglamoni
Posts: 32
Joined: 11 May 2014, 15:21

Re: the church history

Post by kinglamoni » 20 May 2014, 10:12

Just keep swimming,

I recognize the feelings you may be having. I say feel them. There is a whole spectrum of feelings I went threw when finding this stuff out. I eventually came full circle. I have tried not to let these issues of the church or people harden my heart.

Please do not stay or leave or do any thing in fear. Do not feel fear because of your temple covenants. Let me make an analogy. Lets say you went and bought a used car from a car dealership (or new car). The dealer gave you a lot of promises and assurances that the car was what he said it was. He said it was reliable, it was in excellent condition. After feeling good about it you signed a contract to pay for the car. Then after driving the car off the lot you discovered the car to be a lemon. The engine gave out or it just wouldn't take you from point A to point B. Are you obligated to the contract you signed with the dealer? Please don't feel obligated to keep sitting in a car that does not work for you. Now, if you choose to keep the car, I recommend an over haul on the engine. Witch I have done and continue to do.

keepswimmin
Posts: 19
Joined: 15 May 2014, 16:43

Re: the church history

Post by keepswimmin » 20 May 2014, 10:13

Thank you all for your answers.. I have a strong believe for a mother so I've nevee questioned it and now my sisters left and believes its a bunch of crap so I have been faced (which I'm learning has been to my benefit) confliction in mt beliefs and what is the truth of god and jesus.. I am realizing I took the meat before the milk.. I wanted to be the picture perfect mormon and let what members thought become the God I was worshipping.. I was so caught up trying to be perfect in my actions and picture that I wasn't focusing on gaining knowledge of the gospel and my relationship with christ. With this being said I have felt the spirit too often within gener conference and teachings of the gospel. I don't understand or even trust in all doctrine yet but I don't need to. I'm realizing I need to work on my relationship with my heavenly father and gain trust in him and follow his holy spirit in my guidance and knowledge. I need to quit letting the letter of the law and the opinions of other define my worthiness to God. As long as I am at peace with him, no one can make that judgement upon me. With that being said I have ALOTof learning to do I have A LOT of praying to do and I need to discover where I stand as far as temporal things are, I have no testiminy of the WoW I have no testimony of the garment and I'm not even 100% sure I trust that joseph smith was a prophet. But I do know I trust God and I trust the spirit he has had me feel during conferences and studies so I'm going to trust him. I feel that I may need to surrender my TR until I have more confidence in living worthily and feel worthy within myself to confidently say I am worthy to attend. So I would like some advice as far as should I just not use my recommend or should I take it to my bishop to surrendor and let him know I'm not against the church I just realize I have a lot to learn and gain a sure knowledge before i feel at peace with my recommend?

User avatar
DarkJedi
Posts: 7219
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: the church history

Post by DarkJedi » 20 May 2014, 10:21

keepswimmin wrote:I'm realizing I need to work on my relationship with my heavenly father and gain trust in him and follow his holy spirit in my guidance and knowledge. I need to quit letting the letter of the law and the opinions of other define my worthiness to God. As long as I am at peace with him, no one can make that judgement upon me.
There you go, my friend - you are on your way to separating the church and the gospel and it's an important epiphany. You do not have to believe everything taught in the church to be an active member in good standing - you are the one who makes that decision.

Were it me, I'd just let the recommend expire. There is little to be gained by going to your bishop, and likely you will lose more than you gain. There is a caveat to this - if you truly believe you have a very understanding bishop and if you truly believe he can help you, then go to him (but those bishops are rare).
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."

My Introduction

Post Reply