Thursday, September 18, 2008

Revelation, Faith, and Infallibility

(The disclaimer here is this is my view, and is not from the FLDS Church but from my own belief in what I was taught)

 Common sense, faith, and revelation go hand in hand. This is how I view the words "revelation from God":

 If everything comes from God, every truth is a "revelation", even the truth of the things we see with our own eyes are "revealing" truth. Revelation comes from light, the light of the sun, or the light of the mind, or the light of the spirit.  In reading about the teachings of Jesus and the words of the prophets in the scriptures, you can see the "good" in them. That is revelation from God. So anything that makes you become enlightened spiritually is "revelation from God" Actually ALL increase in intelligence, whether spiritually or mentally is revelation from God. Whether your eyes and ears give it to you, or education gives it to you, or scripture gives it to you, or even your experiences give it to you, it all comes from the same source if it is good, and that is God. If it is not good it comes from the devil, and even what he commands is allowed by God to test us. Prayer, and obedience to God and righteous living is the path to higher spiritual revelation and intelligence.

The devil, who was cast out of heaven, has been given dominion of this earth, and he has been allowed to give revelation as well. His power is to test and destroy us, limited only by God. The devil will also reveal truth, but his truths are evil truths, and are only for the purpose of destroying us. God allows these things to try us, this life is the great test of our existence.

People are all on different planes of spirituality, or quantity of the Holy Spirit and those who are on a lower plane, or have less of that peaceful spirit, cannot really understand those who are on a higher. They must either raise themselves up, which takes much prayer effort, or not. And often many fight them because they don’t want them to exist, out of envy or hatred. Freedom is the decision to choose. Some peoples "common sense" is different than other peoples "common sense", and which is right? Well, it comes from prayer and PERSONAL revelation; which IS true common sense.  The devil has his version as well. All of us are somewhere between his version and God’s.

Our Father in heaven and Our Lord Jesus Christ the Father and the Son, both have identical personality, attributes, and even character; they are ONE in all things and thus have perfect command of the Holy Ghost. Oneness with THEM is the highest spirituality you can attain. Their intelligence is higher than all the scientists put together, and all scientific discoveries are through God. The devil has power to deceive and he has given many discoveries to man as well, but they are evil and are meant to destroy or deceive. (See Lectures on Faith #5, which many memorize)

Priesthood is the authority to dispense the Holy Spirit, it must come from God through the prophet, the man who God chose through the mouth of the prophet before him. When a man is a prophet he becomes the Priesthood father of the whole people. And that is his responsibility, whether he feels he is worthy or not. In essence in the family of the FLDS, he is over the fathers, so abuse (with very low threshold) is not tolerated from the men. The FLDS men have a superior over them in their family, actually several who are in authority over them. The ladies do not have to follow an unrighteous husband.

A prophet is a Father to ALL of the people, the highest authority in the FLDS Priesthood. In the FLDS church the men seek God through scripture, prayer, and those with Higher Priesthood for council in their lives, and call that council "Revelation". Higher Priesthood and the authority to guide comes from the higher plane, or the greater Spiritual Power. The Holy Ghost is the Spirit of God, and without the Spirit of God, there is NO Priesthood. So in the FLDS you can tell when your leader has the authority to tell you what you should do if YOU have the Spirit of God, and that Spirit is making sense of the things you are being told. It is a matter of FAITH.

What is Faith? It is belief in something not seen, and the reason we do everything we do. EVERYONE is faith full. Everyone believes many things that they do not KNOW to exist.

Lectures on Faith #1 paragraph 8-11 shows that even those who HATE believe something.

8. "Now faith is the substance (assurance) of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

9. From this we learn that faith is the assurance which men have of the existence of things which they have not seen, and the principle of action in all intelligent beings.

10. If men were duly to consider themselves, and turn their thought and reflections to the operations of their own minds, they would readily discover that it is faith, and faith only, which is the moving cause of all action in them; that without it both mind and body would be in a state of inactivity, and all their exertions would cease, both physical and mental.

11. Were this class to go back and reflect upon the history of their lives, from the period of their first recollection, and ask themselves what principle excited them to action, or what gave them energy and activity in all their lawful avocations, callings, and pursuits, what would be the answer? Would it not be that it was the assurance which they had of the existence of things which they had not seen as yet? Was it not the hope which you had, in consequence of your belief in the existence of unseen things, which stimulated you to action and exertion in order to obtain them? Are you not dependent on your faith, or belief, for the acquisition of all knowledge, wisdom, and intelligence? Would you exert yourselves to obtain wisdom and intelligence, unless you did believe that you could obtain them? Would you have ever sown, if you had not believed that you would reap? Should you have ever planted, if you had not believed that you would gather? Would you have ever asked, unless you had believed that you would receive? Would you have ever sought, unless you had believed that you would have found? Or, would you have ever knocked, unless you had believed that it would have been opened unto you? In a word, is there anything that you would have done, either physical or mental, if you had not previously believed? Are not all your exertions of every kind, dependent on your faith? Or, may we not ask, what have you, or what do you possess, which you have not obtained by reason of your faith? Your food, your raiment, your lodgings, are they not all by reason of your faith? Reflect, and ask yourselves if these things are not so. Turn your thoughts on your own minds, and see if faith is not the moving cause of all action in yourselves; and, if the moving cause in you, is it not in all other intelligent beings?

I DO NOT think that the prophet is completely infallible; for even HE will tell you that. He is a human being and subject to all the physical ills of life and the tests the Lord allows the devil to give him. But I DO think his word is infallible when he is advising ME personally. That IS a matter of faith, and everything else he does is none of my business unless it involves me. He is responsible to the Lord for the faithful people as a whole, not what each individual does. So if a man does wrong, the prophet has the authority and RESPONSIBILITY to send him out of the church. And if a man completely loses the Holy Spirit through sin, he loses his Priesthood completely, and his wife or wives are no longer sealed to him in the church. His vow was to keep the Holy Spirit, and he broke that vow. His wife can wait for him to be restored if that is possible, or go with him, or marry again. That is between her and her Lord.

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