• Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Reputation Activity

  1. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Vort in Missionaries   
    Did he come specifically to hear your talk?
  2. Haha
    askandanswer got a reaction from Still_Small_Voice in MacArthur Park   
    I'm amazed that the lake is still green after all those years. There must have been a HUGE amount of icing on that cake!
  3. Haha
    askandanswer got a reaction from Vort in MacArthur Park   
    I'm amazed that the lake is still green after all those years. There must have been a HUGE amount of icing on that cake!
  4. Haha
    askandanswer got a reaction from Jamie123 in MacArthur Park   
    I'm amazed that the lake is still green after all those years. There must have been a HUGE amount of icing on that cake!
  5. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Just_A_Guy in Hypothetical - the "wedding"   
    The older I get, the more our social rituals and drama surrounding weddings just seem ridiculous.
    In the hypothetical described in the OP, I’d say:  As long as the (temple) wedding actually happens, the time/place/manner is of minimal importance to me.  I’d be more worried about how the pressures described would affect the marriage itself.
  6. Like
    askandanswer reacted to romans8 in long absence   
    I was away for a while dealing with family matters in lieu of what is going on in Ukraine.  Things have settled down a bit but we are still doing hospitality work with the hurting.
  7. Haha
    askandanswer reacted to MrShorty in theology of cats and dogs joke   
    I should probably apologize for the irreverent nature of this one. I once posted the joke about dogs and cats where dogs believe that, because we bring them food, we are god, and cats believe that, because we bring them food, they are god. Well, in the same vein...
  8. Like
    askandanswer reacted to NeuroTypical in Like In The Days of Noah   
    Well, with other people leaving other organized religion in record numbers, maybe.  I mean, folks can always make cases for inactivity, or people who don't believe any more, but don't not-believe enough to have their names removed from the rolls.  But just plain old looking at membership numbers (or in this case, numbers of wards/branches):

    We've been tracking what they call a "declining rate of increase".  That means we're still growing, just not as fast.  (Sorry, I can only find 2019 data, but I've seen beancounter threads after April's General Conference where folks crunch the numbers and say we're still baaaaarely growing.
  9. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Carborendum in Like In The Days of Noah   
    People ignore what they want to ignore.
    I think we need to ask ourselves the question "of all the counsel that the Prophet has given, what am I ignoring?"  If we're following the counsel "individuals are responsible for their own decisions..." we need to know what all the considerations are for making an informed decision.
    If we've gone through the process of
    seeking out all their counsel on a topic Prayerfully considering where we sit in relationship to those topics Prayerfully seeking the guidance of the Spirit for our individual situations Making our final decision based on that counsel and the guidance of the Spirit Then we've done exactly what the Lord expects us to do. For others to accuse us of doing otherwise (just because we came up with a different answer) is unrighteous judgment.  Every situation, every person/family will have different variables in their lives.  We will be held accountable to the Lord in how faithfully we sought out His will for us individually.
    And just as people will ignore what they will ignore, they will also judge when they shouldn't.
  10. Like
    askandanswer reacted to CV75 in Tree of Life   
    This is my opinion, or what I think I know 🙂 : Any symbolism aside, the tree of life sustains immortality and life in God’s presence (as before the Fall) while the tree of knowledge of good and evil sustains temporal and spiritual death (as after the Fall). The tree of life was preeminent in the Garden of Eden because those who chose the second estate chose life with God; its purpose is to extend the presence of God from the first estate into the second estate (and third, if you count the resurrection). It took some spiritual effort for Adam and Eve to choose to partake of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. After the Fall, temporal and spiritual death became preeminent, and likewise we have to exert spiritual effort to once again access the tree of life through the covenant path.
  11. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Traveler in Tree of Life   
    As we look into scripture - at least it is my opinion - there are many things that do not make sense or are difficult to understand.  I like your questions.  I had to go back to carefully review the scriptures in Genesis.  For example, Adam and Eve were never commanded not to partake of the tree of life.  But the Genesis scripture tell us some very interesting and important points.  The tree of life was always in the garden of Eden and Adam and Eve were told that they could partake of that particular tree along with all the others - the exception was the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.  Once Adam and Eve partook of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil - G-d (Jehovah?) said that they (Adam and Eve) had become like them.  This is an indication of the plurality of G-ds and that the status of man had changed in a manner to become more like the G-ds.
    But the scripture is clear to indicate that Adam and Eve, being in the state and condition of having partaken of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil man was not to partake directly of the Tree of Life and G-d made absolutely sure that Adam and Eve and their posterity would not be able to partake of the fruit while in their fallen state.
    I think there is something else you ought to know.  In your post above you used the word Cherubims.  Your use is grammatically incorrect.  The correct singular term would be Cherub and the plural of Cherub is Cherubim - not Cherubims.   With the Cherubim (plural) there is a sword with two distinct characteristics.   The first characteristic is a flame.  This concept of fire is symbolically used in scripture to indicate a process of purification.   An example is the baptism of fire by the Holy Ghost.  If you speculate any other symbolic nature of a flame - I would be interested in your source or logic by which you come to such as a possible conclusion.  
    The other characteristic of the sword is that it terns "every way".  This I believe to be an indication of G-d's justice.  Often this symbolism is spoken of as a two edge sword that cuts in two directions.  This is a standard symbolization of the sword of justice and an indication that the sword both punishes (the guilty) and protects (the innocent).  I believe this is all very clear that the Cherubim were placed to guard the Tree of life to insure that nothing unjust and un-pure ever reaches the tree and that Adam and Eve were driven from Eden and the Tree of Life because they were no longer either pure nor innocent.
    It is also interesting to note that anciently (in Hebrew and many other ancient languages) an individual's name was also their title or position.  This is in part what certain individuals in the Old Testament were given names - because their position or title before G-d and man was changed.  This change is also and indication of covenant.  The name Adam - is and indication of both title and covenant.  The meaning of Adam, interestingly is "mankind".  The epoch of "Adam" is critical and important and is even referenced much later in the New Testament.  I believe that we all can think of ourselves (male for Adam and female for Eve) as the participants in partaking of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and being driven from the Garden of G-d into the lone and dreary world to suffer sorrow all the days of our lives that will eligibility end in death - both of the spirit and of the physical body.   That before we could partake of the Tree of Life there must be an atonement and our repentance.  That the Cherubim will make sure that only through the atonement and repentance can any man or woman partake of the Tree of life.
    But because this is all symbolic that journey to the Tree of Life is not completed by just partaking of the fruit of the tree.  There is still something else to accomplish.
    The Traveler
  12. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Anddenex in Tree of Life   
    I understand what would have happened if Adam had partaken of the fruit of the tree of life. That's not what I'm curious about. I'm curious as to why the tree existed. You suggest that if Adam had eaten of the fruit of that tree, it would have terminated the whole plan of salvation. I'm a bit puzzled by the idea that God, after having worked so hard to set up the Plan of Salvation and creating the setting in which it would take place, would then risk everything by placing a tree in a garden, whether literal or symbolic, that could have ruined everything if Adam had eaten from it. The idea doesn't seem to make sense to me. I think that all that God does is in furtherance of His plans and that He doesn't engage in self-sabotage or do anything to put His plans at risk. 
    It may be, as you claim, that the tree of life, while in the garden was life, spiritual, but then again, that might also not be the case. I'm not sure what this idea is based on or where it comes from. I'm also not immediately seeing how the existence or absence of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, whether literal or symbolic, had any impact on the nature or degree of opposition that was already in existence well before this earth was created. 
  13. Like
    askandanswer reacted to laronius in Tree of Life   
    In Alma 32, Alma compares "the word unto a seed" which we are to plant in our hearts. This seed, upon maturity, is called by Alma "the tree of life" "springing up unto eternal life." Viewing the Garden of Eden from this perspective, something within us, opens up new meaning. I agree with @Carborendum that "the" Garden of Eden is largely representative of childhood and a state of innocence for Adam and Eve. We know the garden literally existed and I have no problem with the two trees being literal trees, placed there to help tutor the childlike Adam and Eve, one that gave life and one that brought death but knowledge also. Once cast out of the garden the tree of life became a symbol of returning back into God's presence.
  14. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Vort in Tree of Life   
    Let me point out a few areas where your analogy/interpretation doesn’t seem to fit.
    In your interpretation, you suggest that the Tree of Life is “symbolic of the spiritual light that and truth that sustains eternal life.” However, in the Genesis account Adam was warned not to partake of the fruit of the tree of life. If the Tree of Life was symbolic of the spiritual light and truth that sustains eternal life then it is more likely that Adam would have been commanded or encouraged to partake of it, as we all have been, rather than commanded not to partake of it and prevented from doing so. God wants all of us to partake to the full of the spiritual light that sustains eternal life and is unlikely to place barriers in our path to stop us from doing so. 
    A second area where your interpretation doesn’t seem to fit well, to me, is the idea that the Cherubim with a flaming sword that turned every way to keep the tree of life is actually Christ. This characterization of Christ doesn’t fit well with how Christ is often characterized in many other scriptures as the one who inviteth and enticeth all of come unto Him, as the good shephard who is out searching in the wilderness for His sheep, and who is forever doing all He can to help us return to Him. He beckons us to Him with a hand of love rather than keeps the way with a flaming sword.
    In most of the references to Genesis 3:24 that turn up on, almost all of them indicate that the role of the cherubims was to guard, not keep, the Tree of Life.
  15. Like
    askandanswer reacted to NeuroTypical in Like In The Days of Noah   
    Over the decades, I have encountered no fewer than half a dozen people who told me they knew the year.  Those years have all come and gone.  
    Over the centuries, I've read of at least a dozen other people or groups who all claimed to know the time of the second coming.  Like the ones I personally encountered, their timeframes were all soon/immediately/quickly.  I'm told the first predictors of the second coming happened within a few years of Christ's death/ascendance.  
    *shrug*.   Eventually, someone'll get it right.  Like they did in the BoM with prophecies of Christ's birth.
  16. Like
    askandanswer reacted to prisonchaplain in Why doctrine is important -- when a family member dies   
    Mental Health Awareness and Overdose Awareness--two causes that came onto my radar with the death of a great-niece. At 20 Fetinol took her life. She believed there is a God, and in some ways showed openness--though she never agreed with "religion." What we can agree on is that she now sees much more than she did. She now knows God the Father is real and that Jesus is the way to reconcile with Him. This story might cause some here to renew their dedication to Baptisms for the Dead. For me, it is a reminder that life is short and our love must be intentional and out loud.  
  17. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Vort in Feedback requested to Alma 11:37   
    My opinion:
    You're overthinking this. Amulek offered a simple logical response to a straightforward, if dishonest, question from Zeezrom: Will God save us in our sins?
    This is a yes or no question, and whichever answer Amulek gave, Zeezrom would have skewered him. Had Amulek answered "no", as expected, Zeezrom would have responded that such a God was unjust, partial, and certainly not All-Powerful.  Had Amulek answered "yes", Zeezrom would have asked Amulek what he was worrying about, then.
    But Zeezrom wasn't expecting Amulek to answer with an explanation that exposed Zeezrom's lies. Amulek's answer was, in effect, "No, of course not. That's like asking if God will let us be dry in our wetness. It makes no sense. To be saved MEANS to be sinless, without spot. God cannot save us in our sins, because 'salvation in sin' has no meaning."
  18. Thanks
    askandanswer reacted to MarginOfError in Feedback requested to Alma 11:37   
    On the more critical side, I think it's fair to recognize that Amulek was not a particularly strong orator. And unfortunately, we don't get much else from him in the Book of Mormon to know if he got much better with time. 
    In his defense, however, he was kind of new to this preaching thing. He was also being put on the spot by a very hostile and, we are told, skilled debate opponent. He may have been a little flustered. 
    So let's deconstruct the message a bit by first backing up to verses 26 - 34. Zeezrom is questioning Amulek on the nature and existence of God, and it is Zeezrom who introduces the terminology "saved in sin." We aren't really sure what Zeezrom means by this, but Amulek kind of rolls with it. In response, Zeezrom says that Amulek is assuming the ability to command God by saying that He will not save people in their sins.  Verse 37 is an attempt by Amulek to clarify what he means. In my opinion, his clarification is rather muddled:
    No unclean thing can inherit the kingdom of heaven You are unclean if you have sinned You must inherit the kingdom of heaven to be saved What's lacking in the immediate response is that repentance is the bridge from being unclean to becoming clean and inheriting the kingdom of heaven.  Amulek kinda-sorta gets around to that in verse 40, but it isn't very direct. So we kind of have to fill in the gaps. And then to top it off, he takes a tangent down physical resurrection in verses 41 - 45 that doesn't add much to his point about sinning, resurrection, and cleanliness.  These verses do give us an important hint, however, because they sound very similar to what Alma taught Corianton in Alma chapters 40-42.  In those chapters, Alma talks about sin, the Atonement, repentance, death, resurrection, and how all those concepts coexist right up until the resurrection, at which point we stand before God to be judged. 
    If we take into account that Alma met Amulek in chapter 8 and recruited him to help teach, I would guess that the duration of time between chapter 8 and chapter 11 is somewhere in the vicinity of several days to a few weeks.  I like to think that Amulek's head is swimming in new information, and the teachings around the physical resurrection are new and exciting to him. In the way I envision these events, he's so excited about this new piece of knowledge and flustered enough by the intense confrontation he's in, that he simply forgets to add a certain part of the puzzle. The message he's trying to convey in verse 37 would come across more clearly if he had though to include some of the teachings in Alma chapter 5 (perhaps verses 26-27?).
    So, in short, I don't think Alma 11:37 can be properly understood in isolation. It's an incomplete thought. Fortunately, there's enough information in Alma's teachings to help us complete the message Amulek was trying to convey.
  19. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Anddenex in Feedback requested to Alma 11:37   
    This conversation leans toward the following principles:
    1) The repentant vs. the unrepentant.
    2) The Saint vs. the sinner.
    In both cases, each individual is a sinner, or better said -- has sinned. The repentant individual is no longer "in sin" as they are alive in Christ. If we think the repentant (Saint) is "in sin" then what does this tell us of the blood of the lamb? When we come unto Christ, our perfection is through him -- who is without sin. As we are alive in Christ, through repentance, we are no longer "in" sin because he is without sin. This verse pays little respect to the individual (the fallen nature of man) as it highlights more of what the Savior does, not who we are -- but who we are becoming.
    In that light, without Christ we are all "in" sin and there is nothing we can do ourselves. We are lost and we are fallen. Those who continue in this fallen state, by their choice, will to some degree be in their sins. Those who have recognized their lost and fallen state, the need of our Savior, will then repent and become perfected in Christ -- once again his perfection saves us -- or makes us holy without spot.  If we are without spot, and are holy, then we are for sure not "in" our sins, but saved from our sins because we know in whom we trust. Only confirming once again, that Christ is the only way to the Father.
    This verse all the more testifies and witnesses the need of a perfect Savior, a perfect sacrifice, by which we become holy without spot (even while we progress toward perfection) otherwise we would never be able to enter the presence of God until we were perfect. But we will be long in his presence until that time in the eternities because of Christ.
  20. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Carborendum in Feedback requested to Alma 11:37   
    Perfection is a horizon, not a destination.
    "In our sins" vs "From our sins" a good analogy would be "enslaving ourselves" vs "trying to escape bondage".
    In the study of addiction we find that there are many different reasons why people remain addicted.  But there is only one reason they escape the addiction:  They keep trying.  No matter how many times they fail.  They keep trying.
    Many who have just "resigned themselves" to captivity don't need any chains or guards.  They will never run away.  Even if they are rescued, they are never truly free.  They don't have the mindset of the free person.
  21. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Emmanuel Goldstein in My Scripture Dream   
    In December I had a dream that I was at my wife's grand-parent's house, they having died before I met her. Her grandfather, who was never talkative in any way, walked up to me and held some scriptures out to me and said, "These are for you, share them." I woke up and looked at the bookshelf in my bedroom and saw my wife's old scriptures sitting there, collecting dust. I had the distinct impression at that moment, I think it was the spirit, that I was to buy a new set of scriptures every year, read through the entire standard works, and mark them. I was then to box them up for a future grand or great grandchild. A week later was Christmas and I bought a new, large set of scriptures and a case and started reading. I am now in Ester and I am picking up steam in this effort. 
    I know that the scriptures are all true and my testimony of them has grown by leaps and bounds. I look forward to the days when my grand children begin coming and I give these scriptures to them with their grandfather's testimony marked throughout. I am hoping these will be a cherished memento of my testimony and feeling towards God and His great mercy on me in my life. I encourage you all to do something similar and leave a heritage of faith and love to your families.
  22. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Vort in Anniversary alone   
    Happy anniversary. I like the idea of spending an anniversary in bed, but I suppose it depends on which bed, and where that bed is. 
    Perhaps the existence of Third Hour might be somewhere on that list of unparalleled blessings God has showered on you?
    I've just had a closer look at your nickname here and was wondering if you've been experiencing a bit of gender confusion lately, mother of dragons?
    If you ever start to turn blue, rather than just feeling blue, I would suggest a return to the hospital, annivesary or not. 
  23. Thanks
    askandanswer got a reaction from JohnsonJones in It appears Roe Vs. Wade is about to be overturned.   
    A wake up call for the woke?
  24. Haha
    askandanswer got a reaction from LDSGator in It appears Roe Vs. Wade is about to be overturned.   
    A wake up call for the woke?
  25. Like
    askandanswer reacted to MrShorty in Anniversary alone   
    Glad to hear you will be released and able to rejoin your wife today.
    On another note, I looked a little into C. diff. infections. If memory serves, you know at least a little French. I found it interesting that C. diff is also sometimes referred to as C. difficile (si difficile??) and I chuckled a little.