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Everything posted by Webster

  1. ConnieM: Thank you for the additional information. Very interesting! I'll look at it more in depth, and make a comment about it later on. My quick answer is that I do believe that the dictionary definition for Agency is correct and we should try to understand how it applies to our scripture.
  2. HiJolly: Great example! (I knew this but it hadn't crossed my mind. Thanks!) He kind of hints at the play on words in this example when He says that He is Endless and that Endless is His name. I think we could easily say that if Eternal punishment is God's punishment, then Eternal life is God's life, or enjoying the type and quality of life that God has. Eternal shows up as, "an appellation of God," in my 1828 Dictionary, but Endless does not, so it's interesting that He defined Endless as one of His names, but didn't with Eternal (because that was already defined that way in the dictionary). (I also consider Alma's reference to an, "infinite and eternal atonement," in Alma 34:10 to be referring to an atonement made by God himself, since the same verse hints that it is not a human sacrifice. Also see the end of verse 14 for more of this hinting.)
  3. Here's something just for ConnieM: In the German translation of the Doctrine and Covenants and the Book of Moses, the word "agency" was translated as "entscheidungsfreiheit" (freedom of choice) in one place and "selbständigkeit" (independence) in four other places. But in the English dictionary the definition for the word Agency has nothing to do with independence or freedom or choice/choose.
  4. That's a good example of a new word. I was thinking more along the lines of existing words that were given new or expanded meanings. I think I read something once that said that the Greek word 'telos' means 'end', and I think the JST in 1 Cor. 15 says something about, "then cometh the end" in reference to the last resurrection (which would be those who are telestial) so there may me a connection there. Any other examples?
  5. More info on the word Light: I looked up the word Light in the 1828 Dictionary to see if our usage was truly unique. It said that Light can refer to God (1 John 1 - God is light) or Chirst (1 John - paraphrase: Christ is the light that lighteth every man that enters the world). Our D&C 93 is also information that comes from John and that's were we get some very interesting "Mormon" material about the meaning of Light. The word Light may not be a completely new usage by our church, since it appears briefly in the New Testament, and our revelations have basically taken that idea and expanded on it. (Light of Christ)
  6. Can anyone think of words found in our modern scripture (i.e., triple combination) which do not follow established usage? I can think of a few examples: D&C 97:21 says that Zion is the Pure in Heart (traditional usage would say it's the name of a place or an ideal). D&C 64:23-25 uses the word Today to describe the period of time until the second coming (but it seems clear that the Lord is intentionally redefining it). There's also the idea of Light which seems to be describing a spiritual phenomena or power, rather than the usual physical illumination meaning, although spiritual Light certainly is related to the idea of spiritual illumination and may have some properties that are similar to physical light. My examples above seem to be where the Lord has used an existing word that's similar to what He's trying to describe, then tweaking it to fit His particular meaning. Do you have any other examples of redefinitions from the scriptures? Are there any words that the Lord has used in a completely new manner without redefining them? I'd be interested to hear others' ideas on this.
  7. If God, being ultimately good, always does what is good and right, why would He give moral agency to His children? Did He give something which was not good?
  8. I vote for moral agency . . . again. (a life that can choose between good and evil.)
  9. I can string thoughts from the scriptures as well. Note that mine are actually equated in verse 36, and that both verses are in the same section, in fact, in contiguous verses: D&C 93:36 The glory of God is intelligence, or, in other words, light and truth. D&C 93:37 Light and truth forsake that evil one So by this we learn that God's glory is, in fact, to forsake the evil one! It's simple logic and it's even tighter than what has been offered thus far. I know that I'm being absurd, but I'm also making a point. Can we please get back to the original topic of this post (which I found interesting and enlightening) rather than using it to promote a tangential theory which has been covered in many other places?
  10. I have always seen the glory of God (i.e., intelligence) as the same as light and truth, the Light of Christ, the Spirit, Priesthood, His fulness, that which fills the immensity of space, etc., etc. I can't think of any LDS scripture off the top of my head which uses the word intelligence in the sense of knowledge or "smarts". As for God's glory, power, and honor, I would be more likely to connect that to intelligence, etc., rather than to His giving us agency. I think God gave us agency for the same reason that He does everything He does --- because He is God and because it is right. I think He has glory, power, and honor because He is God and He had it long before the council in heaven.
  11. I would probably have to go with #2 in the poll above, but #1 might be true, I just can't think of an example, can you?
  12. Gillebre: 1) Most people would say that Satan sought to destroy agency so that his 'plan' to save all would work. 2) Some might say that the implementation of his 'plan' to save all would have resulted in the destruction of agency. 3) You are saying (correct me if I'm wrong) that Satan was seeking for power by purposefully becoming God's adversary and intentionally lying in an attempt to draw away followers after him. Therefore, he did not necessarily seek to destroy the agency of men in a general sense (since he probably did not believe or expect he could deceive all of God's children), but he did seek to destroy (and actually did destroy) the agency of those whom he deceived into following him, since they are now in bondage to him and follow his will.
  13. One question to better understand your view: God said that Satan sought to destroy the agency of man. How does what you've said above do that? It seems that opposition and temptation are needed for agency to work, so the above seems (to me) to enhance or make agency possible rather than destroy it.
  14. JohnnyRudick: I like much of what you just said. It tends to follow the definitions found for Agents and Agency in the dictionary. You talk about acting (one definition) and acting in another's behalf (another definition). Very good.
  15. Those aren't dictionaries. Also, one scripture reference that talks about choosing and another reference that contains the word agency do not a definition make. One scripture you have is D&C 101:78. You have highlighted act and agency in the same verse. Very good. The dictionary says that agency is related to acting. But it does not say choice. We get the idea that agency is the same as choice from the old protestant/philosophical term of "free agency" which describes a certain type of agency, without defining what agency itself means. I would expect God knew and used the correct meaning of Agency from the dictionary. I do not think we should rely on protestantism or philosophy to define it for the Latter-day Saints.
  16. I know. I'm asking, not Justice. If you can find a good scripture, great. If you can find a dictionary definition that seems to find, even more great. If you can find a dictionary that says something about freedom and/or choice, I'd be amazed. And if you don't care, then, oh well.
  17. While we're on this "prove it from the scriptures" kick, can you (or anyone else) prove that Agency as used in the scriptures is in fact, "the ability and opportunity to choose one's actions and/or thoughts"? I don't think I could prove it, can you? Can you find that definition of Agency in a dictionary? Again, I cannot (can you)? Could the scriptures be using the word Agency as defined by the dictionary (which is different from how we commonly define it in the church)? I think so, but I cannot prove it one way or the other. Can you?
  18. Vort: (Just trying to understand where you're coming from) Those who think he had a plan can't prove it from the minimal information in the scriptures. Those who think he did not have a plan cannot prove that either. So we're all screwed. (That's why I'm been asking for opinions. I take it yours is that he had no plan; he only offered lies to try to get God's power.)
  19. To Justice: I'm not sure I'm clear on your idea. You say Satan wanted to give Eve the Tree of Life after she partook of the Tree of Knowledge. Is that part of his original proposal from the pre-mortal existance that he would use to redeem / 'save' all? Or is that plan B after he was rejected? To me it seems that if Eve became immortal in her fallen condition that would be highly problematic. She would basically be an immortal, telestial being, which in my mind means she cannot have children. Her state would seem to be more like a translated being, not a resurrected being. I just see too many problems, including how would you call Eve 'saved' when she is an immortal, yet still 'fallen', telestial being? And I thought only immortal beings, exalted in the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom could have increase. Anyway, as I have said before, I like hearing the different opinions, but I see more problems rather than answers on that one.
  20. Wow! I leave for a little while and look what happens! (And look. I'm a Senior member now. How'd that happen?)
  21. To Vort and PastorBob I agree with what other's have said. We are discussing the proposal that Satan offered in the pre-mortal existance, not what he is currently trying to do. They are not necessarily the same, and in my view they are completely different things. To any who think that we have no knowledge about what his proposal was read Moses 4:1-4. Satan's own words were that he would redeem all, that not one soul would be lost, and God's commentary which follows informs us that Satan sought to destroy the agency of man. We also learn that Satan wanted God's honor, which is His glory. The ideas that have been expressed so far have been interesting. I do not think we can ever be certain of what went on in the pre-mortal existance, but I know I have learned from the views that have been shared, and have received new insights into the gospel and the scriptures through this exercise.
  22. The big choice that Satan's proposal (that he would redeem all that not one soul would be lost) would have taken away was whether you could choose Eternal Life or something less. His plan would force all to have the same outcome. By the way, his 'no one will be lost' idea does not say we will all receive Eternal Life. It only promisses no one will be lost. (Even if he could pull off his plan, the outcome would still be something less than Eternal Life, in my opinion.) When Satan said, "one soul shall not be lost," he was right --- all of them would be!
  23. From a strictly logical point of view, I don't think it matters either way. Satan claimed he would redeem all and none would be lost. If that's were true, then who cares what anyone chooses; it doesn't matter; all would be redeemed and none would be lost. By the way, the only 'force' I can find tied to Satan's proposal in any way is the implication that he would force everyone to be 'saved', whether they wanted it or not. (The atonement forces everyone to be resurrected and come into God's presence to be judged regardless of what they do and what they want. For that matter, the law will 'force' a punishment upon the wicked at the last day (2 Nephi 2:26) so I don't get too upset about the idea of force--it's everywhere! And I don't care much for the argument where people say that this or that law takes away their agency--it may take away freedom, but not agency. Again, check the dictionary.:)) Having said that, I do find some of your points of view interesting. The idea of the 'safety net' not being in the pre-mortal existance is something I've not heard before. Also, when you connected God's honor with His ability to give agency, that was a new twist. I'm not sure where you're getting those things from, but I enjoy hearing others' ideas and interpretations. They freely chose to rebel against God with full knowledge since there was no veil, and they were punished accordingly. If there was no law, then how did God justly kick them out? I don't think that is clear at all. I would guess that, but there's nothing I can think of in the scriptures which gives a clue one way or the other. They were given everything they wanted . . . except to get a body . . . and to be saved.
  24. Think what you want, but the only actual quote we have from Satan as to what he was proposing is "Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor." (Moses 4:1) He actually proposed that he would redeem all mankind (and maybe he thought if he had God's honor and power he could). Again, I don't think he could actually have pulled it off, but that is what he was proposing.