Thursday, October 15, 2009

Self Correction


As another follow up to the post I did on teacher-craft, Weeping for Zion has a great post pertaining to the acquisition of worldly knowledge and the spiritual costs associated therein.

Institutional Self Correction

In an earlier post I mentioned how one of my ancestors from my fathers side of the family was responsible for introducing a false doctrine into the LDS theology. It had to do with the belief that Adam is the literal spiritual father of Jesus Christ and the only God with which we have to do.

I noted that another ancestor of mine from my mothers side of the family who was a bishop living in southern Utah challenged the doctrine sometime after it was originally taught.

After he passionately argued his case and showed how the doctrine was not a sound doctrine and how it clearly contradicted the word of God, he got his hands slapped by the first presidency. But shortly after that, the leadership of the church began instructing people to quit teaching the doctrine.

Within a few generations after that most members of the Church were not even familiar with the false doctrine that had been taught.

One of the points I wanted to make in that article is that even though the law of common consent was never allowed to challenge the initial introduction of that blasphemous doctrine, the church was able to eventually "self correct" and weed that doctrine out as a result of feedback from members.

Originally the law of common consent was given as a checks and balances measure by which the church membership could challenge the introduction of a false doctrine or the sustaining of false brethren.

Unfortunately the doctrine of common consent has become corrupted. It is now assumed that those in charge don't make mistakes... or at least that members are not at liberty to challenge any mistakes that are made by the leadership.

Anytime a member refuses to sustain someone in a calling or the introduction of a new doctrine, this law of common consent is simply used to identify those who are unwilling to support and sustain the leaders. Those unwilling to vote in the affirmative are branded as dissenting voices or even apostates.

Nevertheless, there is still an informal form of common consent that takes place within the church.. it take place in the form of articles and internet chatter from members and non-members alike.

I believe that the church leadership and those paid to serve on the various committees that are responsible for creating LDS lesson manuals are very much aware of criticisms that are being voiced and often times this feedback is responsible for the softening or even reversals in the doctrines that are taught in the official teaching manuals endorsed by the Church.

The Contrarian Mormon blog has an incredible post showing recent changes that have been made in the Gospel Principles Manual that the church publishes. There is a very clear effort to reduce the emphasis on carnal commandments and outward works and return to emphasizing faith, faithfulness and grace.

I believe that is another example of "self correction" that the church is going through.

I see that as a very positive sign from a doctrinal point of view.

Arch Bishop Ussher & Oct 23

Was the world created 6,012 ago this month?

I don't think so... but apparently Arch Bishop Ussher did.

"... the author of the book frequently described as the greatest history book ever written theorized the world was created Oct. 23, 4004 B.C. – making it 6,012 years old this month...

In the 1650s, an Anglican bishop named James Ussher published his "Annals of the World," subtitled, "The Origin of Time, and Continued to the Beginning of the Emperor Vespasian's Reign and the Total Destruction and Abolition of the Temple and Commonwealth of the Jews." First published in Latin, it consisted of more than 1,600 pages."

Needless to say, I don't believe that mortal probation ended 12 years ago. This world still needs to be warned by God's authorized servants before probation ends. Once it ends, we will all know it... the world will not continue on, business as usual.

I am however, always happy to jump on board in the hope that a particular date could have significance... so, in hopes that the good Bishop is just 12 years off from identifying an important year and month, I figure October 2009 is as good a time as any to hope for as far as the return of the servants is concerned...

I sometimes love to search modern revelation according to dates they were given.

Very few revelations ever came in the month of October for some strange reason, however I found it interesting that out of over 100 published revelations that came during a six year period of time, only three of them contain the following phrase,

"Prepare ye the way of the Lord, and make his paths straight"

Two of the three revelations containing this phrase were given in the month of October. The other one was given November 3rd!

Could the servants who return in the spirit of Elijah to prepare the way for the Masters return be coming in late October or early November?

.. just a thought.

While all three revelations are addressing the return of the servants, one of them is of particular relevance...

Simply do a key phrase search to identify these three revelations.

1 comment:

Malachi said...

Last night I was at the Joseph Smith Hotel sitting listening to a good sister play the piano in the ornate lobby. They have this like 10 foot statue of Joseph and as I sat there listening and watching I asked the representation of Jospeh when he was coming back?
Maybe it's time and I'm not being told. What a surprise.
Well it's time to go to work. I didn't get away from the great center of mormondom until 10:30 last night and I have to go to work again this morning.
Let me know if you see a servant of God, I'd be interested in seeing them.