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Everything posted by bytebear

  1. No, but I think the current mouthpiece of God is.
  2. We've already normalized premarital sex. And yet, we don't shun people who lived together before marriage, or even those living in sin, as it were.
  3. My answer is yes. As I see it, a gay couple has made a choice that stops their progression. They cannot have biological children in this life or the next. But other than that, I don't see much harm to anyone else. With the heterosexual, I see them destroying several lives, including any children that they may produce. So, yes, I see a difference. And by the way, the gay couple's eternal fate is the same as one who chooses to marry a non-member, or pre-1978, a member who is of African descent. I think you are far to hung up on the sexual act, than the actual ramifications of sexual acts.
  4. Hmm.. committed monogamous relationship between two adults, compared to heterosexual who sluts around, has multiple abortions, passes around STDs, and also violates the sexual laws of God. Yep, exactly the same. <eye roll> Seems you are a bit hung up on this particular sin. Now, wasn't someone saying which person they would rather have conduct the Mormon Tabernacle Choir? I think I know my choice.
  5. Gay marriage is not pedophilia, so why conflate the two? Unless you want to make it into something it's not. I see a HUUUUGE difference between pedophilia and gay relationships between two consenting adults. I also see a huge difference between current marital norms and polygamy, but I won't go down that path.
  6. I am trusting the leaders of the church who arranged this event.
  7. When the church had restrictions for black members, it was a real trial for the leaders and the members. How can you have a gospel restriction while at the same time not allowing bigotry and hatred to filter in? I trust the leaders of the church to make the tough cultural outreach choices that members may find offensive. I trust their love over your fear.
  8. Not really. There were certain decisions and actions that precluded you from temple blessings. Yet, we didn't discourage full fellowship with minorities, and in fact, worked very hard to encourage participation where they could. All sorts of decisions will diminish your gospel blessings, but we don't demand the world conform to our gospel standards. Instead we befriend all people, and hope that our friendship will influence others to make good decisions. I think sometimes we forget that even those fighting against gospel standards are still children of God.
  9. It was discouraged before the priesthood ban was lifted.
  10. No, but we are in a cultural transition period. How about interracial marriage? How about polygamy? Those have been controversial practices. And I do think there is a push for unwed parenthood, and frankly, we've been a bit too timid on our condemnation of it.
  11. So, culturally gay relationships are becoming normal. That's just a fact. The church has a standard on marriage which I see not changing any time soon, and rightly so, but that standard also includes restrictions on straight sexual relationships outside of marriage. There are also has specific restrictions on smoking, drinking, coffee, modesty in dress, and all sorts of commandments that fly in the face of cultural norms. Yes, gay relationships are tough to accept, but it wasn't that long ago, that having a straight couple move in together without getting married would be scandalous. So, the gospel and the covenants of it are in the world, but not of the world. We adapt to our surroundings. And I think the leaders of the church are very smart to be an inclusive voice to the gay community than to be screaming repentance from over a wall. Society will eventually catch up, and realize that gay rights don't mean forcing religions to conform any more than smokers rights. Imagine if we had protests at our temples that we weren't allowing smokers join. Same concept, just a different sin. And, frankly, I find an uncommitted straight couple having children far more abhorrent. So, we accept straight people who are not living to gospel standards into our cultural spaces, and hope to influence them to prepare their lives so they can participate in our spiritual spaces. Why not do the same for gay people?
  12. We have the greatest opportunity in world history to find the lost tribes of Israel, as we are now a global church, and ever expanding to countries that are hostile to religion. The church has worked long and hard fostering relationships with these countries. I can't think of any other time where we had some much influence than right now. I believe president Nelson is thinking of China, just as we once thought of East Germany, a country where we had a temple before the Berlin wall fell.
  13. Ah, letter of the law vs spirit of the law. Do you think the advice was about ear piercing techniques? Or was it about making choices about cultural trends that may hinder our spiritual growth?
  14. I would say authority from God, and the church, the doctrines, the scriptures are all side effects of that.
  15. It's more like God gives you a choice, and you choose to follow God's plan or not. In our first estate, we chose to follow God's plan and come to Earth to be tested. Satan rebelled, didn't want to be tested and thought everyone should just be saved without trials. The second estate is kept through covenants. We covenant with God (via baptism) and live our lives in a way that we keep that covenant, and again choose God. Those who reject God will not keep their second estate.
  16. Mormons have this concept of "Estates", these are kind of like testing grounds, and there are two estates mentioned in the scriptures. The First Estate is our pre-mortal life where we prepared to come to Earth. Satan rebelled and took a third of the host of heaven with him. They are those who did not keep their first estate, and are demons. They will never be born on Earth, never receive a body, and never be resurrected. They are forever spirits, damned forever. The Second Estate is what we are experiencing now, what we call mortality. And if we keep our second estate, we will become one with God and in Catholic terms, go to heaven. But even those who do not keep their second estate will be reborn into a new resurrected body and receive some level of spiritual glory. As to angels, the LDS Bible Dictionary does a far better explanation than I could give.;letter=A
  17. From Jeopardy! this week, I learned that the Hebrew word for Angel actually means Messenger. Which makes sense when you read the accounts and roles of angels in the Bible.
  18. It's how I describe the difference between happiness and joy. Happiness is riding a roller coaster, or getting a high score on a video game, or when your favorite team makes the playoffs. It's euphoric and exciting and makes you want to jump up and down and hug random strangers. Joy is feeding a homeless man and he thanks you for it. It's watching your child's first steps. It's going to the temple and being sealed for eternity as a family. It's when you love someone more than yourself. It's so much more than just happiness. It's when you connect your spirit with another spirit. Honestly, thinking about it, I don't think you can have joy alone. It only exists through the connections with others.
  19. Hereditary evolution doesn't go that fast. You can't weed out the "dumb" people in thousands of years of selective mating practices, let alone do it in a few generations.
  20. I was in one branch on my mission where we met in a office, and rearranged a conference room to have the chairs in rows. We did have a tape recorder for hymns.
  21. The Book of Mormon was written and compiled under the direction of God. The Bible is a collection of books written for various reasons, some under the guidance of God, others maybe not so much, and then it was all put together by committee. of course it won't have the same flow and feel as the Book of Mormon. But the Doctrine and Covenants also has a disjointed and kind of randomness too. Some parts are pure poetry. Others feel like a secretarial notebook. Just the nature of the scriptures.
  22. Having served my mission in your neck of the woods, i agree. Your beaches are horrible. But come see California beaches, and you may change your mind.
  23. So, here's a question that I don't know the answer to, and maybe it's not one that has an answer. But if you dedicate your house with a priesthood blessing, and then, later on, you move. Does the blessing stay with the house, so the new residents benefit from it? Even if they aren't members of the church?