askandanswer

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  1. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Anddenex in a limitation on the Atonement?   
    It has been suggested, both in scripture and church teachings, that there is a certain point beyond which it will be difficult, or perhaps even impossible, to repent. This certain point is usually described as being at, or beyond, the day of final judgement. Alma expressed this idea like this, but this is far from being the only place, or the only way, in which it has been expressed.
    "therefore I say unto you the time shall come, yea, and it shall be at the last day, that he who is filthy shall remain in his filthiness." (Alma 7:21)
    If this idea is true, would that then place a limitation on either the power or accessibility of the atonement? It almost seems like Alma, and others who have expressed this idea are putting an end date beyond which it either cannot be accessed or will be of no effect.
  2. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Vort in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    I’ve always felt uncomfortable with the idea that God is unfathomable. I believe that He greatly desires to be known and understood by His children, and that He is willing to assist anybody to help know Him better if they go about it in the right way. This conclusion is supported by John 17:3 combined with 1 Nephi :7
    And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
     for I know that the Lord giveth no bcommandments unto the children of men, save he shall cprepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.
    There are also a great many verses of scripture where God promises to give knowledge and truth to those who seek it, and I believe those scriptures to be true.
  3. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from SilentOne in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    I suspect that there are at least two primary sources of law. One source is what I will refer to as natural law and the other is what I will call created law.
    As I see it the existence of natural law is independent of any Being or being, and all Beings, including our God and every other god, are subject to those laws. This natural law has existed for all eternity and it is just a description of how the universe operates. I have no clear idea as to its origins. I believe that the requirement for justice, or the need to maintain some sort of balance, which is closely related to the concept of justice, is the basis for one of these natural laws.
    I believe that created law, in order to be sustainable and to endure over a long period of time-  ie. from the time we were intelligences until the time we enter our final condition in the eternal realm - must be consistent with, or operate within the boundaries imposed by, natural law. If any created law is not consistent with this over-arching natural law, it will either not be established, or it will fail. I believe that the only created law that is sustainable over a long period of time is 1) law that is consistent with the natural law, and 2) law that has been created with the involvement and consent of those who will be subject to it. For God to find some free thinking, autonomous, self-aware intelligences and to then seek to impose His will upon them by creating His own law by which these intelligences would be governed, and which would enable their progression, without their consent and involvement, would be unjust, no matter how well intentioned such law was. This injustice would therefore make God’s created law inconsistent with the over-arching natural laws, meaning that it could not endure.
    If the above idea is true – that there is a close, causal connection between the longevity of a set of laws and the involvement of those subject to that law in its creation, then it follows that we and God, working together, are the source of the created law to which we are subject.
    As to origins of the longer lasting, greater natural laws to which created law must be subject, I have no clear ideas. It may be that natural law doesn’t require a being or Being for its existence and operation in much the same way that gravity doesn’t.  
  4. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from SilentOne in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    I suspect that there are at least two primary sources of law. One source is what I will refer to as natural law and the other is what I will call created law.
    As I see it the existence of natural law is independent of any Being or being, and all Beings, including our God and every other god, are subject to those laws. This natural law has existed for all eternity and it is just a description of how the universe operates. I have no clear idea as to its origins. I believe that the requirement for justice, or the need to maintain some sort of balance, which is closely related to the concept of justice, is the basis for one of these natural laws.
    I believe that created law, in order to be sustainable and to endure over a long period of time-  ie. from the time we were intelligences until the time we enter our final condition in the eternal realm - must be consistent with, or operate within the boundaries imposed by, natural law. If any created law is not consistent with this over-arching natural law, it will either not be established, or it will fail. I believe that the only created law that is sustainable over a long period of time is 1) law that is consistent with the natural law, and 2) law that has been created with the involvement and consent of those who will be subject to it. For God to find some free thinking, autonomous, self-aware intelligences and to then seek to impose His will upon them by creating His own law by which these intelligences would be governed, and which would enable their progression, without their consent and involvement, would be unjust, no matter how well intentioned such law was. This injustice would therefore make God’s created law inconsistent with the over-arching natural laws, meaning that it could not endure.
    If the above idea is true – that there is a close, causal connection between the longevity of a set of laws and the involvement of those subject to that law in its creation, then it follows that we and God, working together, are the source of the created law to which we are subject.
    As to origins of the longer lasting, greater natural laws to which created law must be subject, I have no clear ideas. It may be that natural law doesn’t require a being or Being for its existence and operation in much the same way that gravity doesn’t.  
  5. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from SilentOne in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    I suspect that there are at least two primary sources of law. One source is what I will refer to as natural law and the other is what I will call created law.
    As I see it the existence of natural law is independent of any Being or being, and all Beings, including our God and every other god, are subject to those laws. This natural law has existed for all eternity and it is just a description of how the universe operates. I have no clear idea as to its origins. I believe that the requirement for justice, or the need to maintain some sort of balance, which is closely related to the concept of justice, is the basis for one of these natural laws.
    I believe that created law, in order to be sustainable and to endure over a long period of time-  ie. from the time we were intelligences until the time we enter our final condition in the eternal realm - must be consistent with, or operate within the boundaries imposed by, natural law. If any created law is not consistent with this over-arching natural law, it will either not be established, or it will fail. I believe that the only created law that is sustainable over a long period of time is 1) law that is consistent with the natural law, and 2) law that has been created with the involvement and consent of those who will be subject to it. For God to find some free thinking, autonomous, self-aware intelligences and to then seek to impose His will upon them by creating His own law by which these intelligences would be governed, and which would enable their progression, without their consent and involvement, would be unjust, no matter how well intentioned such law was. This injustice would therefore make God’s created law inconsistent with the over-arching natural laws, meaning that it could not endure.
    If the above idea is true – that there is a close, causal connection between the longevity of a set of laws and the involvement of those subject to that law in its creation, then it follows that we and God, working together, are the source of the created law to which we are subject.
    As to origins of the longer lasting, greater natural laws to which created law must be subject, I have no clear ideas. It may be that natural law doesn’t require a being or Being for its existence and operation in much the same way that gravity doesn’t.  
  6. Like
    askandanswer reacted to laronius in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    From what I've read I would say there is no official doctrine on this matter. Some Church leaders firmly believe the Exalted Man theory while others have stated that it just didn't feel right to think God wasn't always God. I too have wondered some of the same things. And while having an established doctrinal statement on the matter would be nice I fail to see why such knowledge should be pivotal to your faith in God and in the restored Church. Must you know everything to believe anything? Cannot the answers you do have be true without having every piece of the puzzle available to you at this point?
    The questions you ask are valid questions but to make your willingness to believe contingent on having the answers to them is not how God wants us to approach Him.
  7. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from NeuroTypical in How are all the unfilled jobs affecting you?   
    I've been seeing this in Australia as well, including hair dressing salons and other service=oriented businesses. The problem is greatly exacerbated in out-back areas where employers have relied on backpacker labour. There was a news report about a month ago about a barrista in a popular outback tourist town being paid 3 to 4 times the hourly salary of a city based barrista. In the city, a good barrista could get $30 an hour on a standard work-day, this guy in the outback was on $90 an hour. I have no idea how much they were selling his coffee for or how many cups he could make in an hour.  
  8. Love
    askandanswer got a reaction from Just_A_Guy in Catholicism and the Nature of God   
    I recommend you do a search of thirdhour.org using the phrase "Why God does what He does." I think the responses you will find to that question might usefully inform your consideration of your question.https://thirdhour.org/forums/search/?q="Why God does what He does"
    I don't believe that God is the source of everything. I think there is some support for the idea that there are what I call "externally imposed requirements" (that others might call law) that God is subject to. I think that some of the support for this idea is that the process by which god in his mortal form became God was more likely to be determined by law rather than as a result of some sort lof random set of circumstances, and of course, any such law must have pre-dated the existence of God in His current form. Additional support for the idea that God is subject to law is the Atonement. I cannot think of any reason why a loving Father would require such suffering from His Son other than to satisfy the demands of an internally imposed requirement. Surely God is not so cruel as to impose such immense suffering on His own beloved Son unless there was a compelling reason to do so, rather than a mere whim. 
    I do think that as far as you and I and all of God's children are concerned, He is our source of everything. By that, I mean that all the law we are subject to either comes directly from Him, or it comes from somewhere or someone else, and is administered by Him. In either case, the result is the same, no matter where the law comes from - we are bound by it.
    I think the question of good or not good can be a little misleading because it tends to pose the arguement in moral terms. Perhaps a more utilitarian approach might help. I think it might be more helpful to think in terms of what is required and what is not required. Perhaps it is the case that the determining factor of whether or not any particular act is considered to good is whether or not that act contributes to, or is required for, our salvation, and the extent to which it is consistent with law. The degree of goodness of any particular act might be determined by the extent to which it contribute to our salvation. If an act contributes to our salvation because it is required to meet the demands of law, regardless of whether or not that law comes from God, or is imposed from elsewhere, we could consider that act to be good. If an act does not contribute to our salvation, or is not required, or if it detracts from another person's pursuit of salvation, then we could say that that act is not good. As to who or what it is that determines whether an act is required for our salvation, as noted above, it may be that some of those requirements come from God, and some of them come through God from elsewhere or elsewhen. 
    A possibility that I have occasionally considered about the source of law, and for which I have not found any scriptural support, is that at least one source, or some of the law to which we are subject to, might have arisen as a result of an agreement between God and the raw, undeveloped intelligences that we all once were. I can imagine the intelligences saying to God, we give our consent for you to impose Your will on us, and do with us as you wish, subject to certain parameters, and those parameters then becoming one of the bases for law.  
     
  9. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Vort in Romans 16:7 - Itching Ears   
    Why? The truth has been revealed to us. If Interpretation A fits in with revealed truth and Interpretation B does not, then absent any other reason to prefer B over A, why would we choose not to embrace A?
  10. Like
    askandanswer reacted to MrShorty in Romans 16:7 - Itching Ears   
    A quick pass through Biblehub to see how other translators have rendered this verse, and it seems to be a mixed bag. Some translators like the kind of interpretation given here -- that these two were well known by the apostles. Several translations used verbiage like "outstanding among the apostles" which seems to suggest that these two were included within the circle of the apostles and had risen to some prominence.
    As @Just_A_Guy notes, this verse has been a challenge to patriarchal priesthood for a long time among Christians, so I'm not sure it is a new thing.
    The real problem that I see is that, while we believe the Bible to be the Word of God, we do not believe the Bible is inerrant. We believe that human ideas get introduced to the text through copying and translating. We don't have the original autographs to work from, so we are limited in how certain we can be about the original text. On top of that, we (or maybe it is just me) don't believe that the authors are infallible in their ability to communicate the impressions they receive or the observations they make and then record.
    IMO, I think this is one of those verses we may just have to come to accept is not entirely clear. We will have to do our level best using our traditions and what Church leaders say and what God speaks to our own hearts on how to understand this verse (and the underlying priesthood/priestesshood issue). Because of the vagueness in the text, we may also need to do better at tolerating the differences of opinion that vagueness leads to among Church members. I often feel like the worst thing we can do in a situation like this is to insist on a single, orthodox interpretation while "squeezing" those with heterodox views out of the Church.
  11. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Traveler in two questions re. the Atonement   
    I would make one very important point that is contrary to our understanding of things.  Because we are mortal being we think of things according to our mortal finite understanding of things and that all finite things have an end.  But we are spirit beings that are infinite.  Thus I suggest that any atonement of sins that involve infinite or eternal beings must - by definition be infinite.
     
    The Traveler 
  12. Like
    askandanswer reacted to person0 in two questions re. the Atonement   
    Well, I did some research on the Church website and could find no resources that directly address this passage in an attempt to explain what we are discussing, so I suppose your interpretation is as good as mine until more is revealed.
    The most important thing I wanted to share is that when we really get down to it, permanent separation from God and His light is the only eternal punishment for all sin.  We also know that no unclean thing can dwell in the presence of God.  Understanding this we can see that the eternal consequence of stealing a piece of bubble gum is equivalent to the eternal consequence of stealing a car (i.e. separation from God).  Our earthly laws would punish the one much more severely than the other, but to God, both would be immediately ineligible to dwell in His presence until they had truly repented.

    On that note, consider how King Lamoni murdered his servants, and yet his repentance process took only a few days.  Alma the younger not only committed many unwritten sins, but he persuaded other to sin also such that he wrote of his effect on others as having 'murdered their souls'; similarly, his repentance took only a few days.  I think that the lack of lengthy punishment and forfeiture of God's Spirit and blessings was the result of the sincerity of their change.  It only takes a long time for some of us to repent because it takes a long time for us to truly decide to change our ways and be dedicated to following God's will in the thing for which we are repenting.
    So anyway, that was my main point, that there is only one punishment for sin, and that punishment is permanent separation from God.
  13. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Vort in two questions re. the Atonement   
    It cannot.
    We would need the answer to the question: What is the nature of Christ's atonement?
    And then, horrified to tears, we would nevertheless need to accept how our Savior has indeed saved us, if we will but grasp the outstretched hand.
  14. Like
    askandanswer reacted to CV75 in two questions re. the Atonement   
    Th suffering you refer to yields an atonement that is "infinite for all mankind" (2 Nephi 25:16), which is numbered unto God but not (Moses 1:35-37); it restores that which cannot be restored by human action (e.g., capital punishment does not bring the murder victim back to life, Alma 34:12); by definition its Godly action is infinite and eternal (Alma 34:10; D&C 20:17 and 28); it covers the span of time before and after mortality (allows birth and resurrection, Alma 34"14).
    Also, by "infinite" I believe it cannot be comprehended by the finite mind until one is perfected (D&C 88:48-49).
    I think people need to know how to read and apply the scriptures to answer this, which entails a number of points about discipleship and what constitutes "scripture."
    I think the bottom line is that "infinite" is used to convey that which only God can comprehend or do.
  15. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from MrShorty in two questions re. the Atonement   
    How can a finite amount of suffering, in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross of Cavalry, accomplish an infinite atonement?
    If we don’t know the answer to this question, what would we need to know in order to be able to answer it?
  16. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Just_A_Guy in Question re the Law of Moses   
    That’s fair, though it’s also worth noting that a) (with a very few notable exceptions) no one who met Christ during His lifetime accepted Him except those who had already accepted the Law of Moses; and b) everyone who received the Gospel after Christ’s death, received it through the preaching of someone who was either a Jew or had accepted fundamentally Jewish perceptions of God, the creation, the afterlife, and morality/ethics. 
    There are today 10-20 million Jews who reject Christ’s divinity.  Let us assume that the majority of them do that out of a theological attachment to the Law of Moses, rather than for social or political reasons.  You still have over a billion Christians who converted because of a book (the Bible) that came to them, as Nephi says, “out of the mouth of a Jew”.  For every modern Jew for whom the Law of Moses has become a stumbling block, there are literally fifty modern Christians for whom it has proved an instrument of salvation. 
  17. Like
    askandanswer got a reaction from Just_A_Guy in Question re the Law of Moses   
    I think that the value of any cultural identities that inhibit or restrict or makes it difficult for a person to come unto Christ needs to be questioned and their continuation could be viewed as a detriment rather than an accomplishment. Whatever other good such cultural identities might be achieving may well be overshadowed by any impediment they may create to bringing people to Christ.
    I can also see how some might view the fact that many are still waiting for a Messiah who has already been and gone 2,000 years ago as evidence of the failure of the law that was intended to help people prepare for, and recognise, the Messiah when He first came.
  18. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Grunt in How to treat a hard heart   
    First, I think we as Saints are way too hard on ourselves.   We all put our best foot forward and seem to live perfect lives, but when you peek behind the curtain you'll see we're all as messed up as the next family.   After one of my Church meetings the other day, a few members pulled me aside and thanked me for sharing both sides.   I'm still not sure what they meant, but I suppose it's because I acknowledge the difficulty as well as the blessings.   That doesn't mean I don't knuckle down and follow in faith, but it's not always easy.

    Second, I think there isn't a secret answer to changing perspective.   A talk, verse, or Hymn can start the journey, but it's a journey.   I loved President Nelson's talk yesterday about Spiritual Momentum.   If you didn't catch it, please do.   In my most humble opinion, attitudes and perspectives are changed through environment and habit.   Build a home that is faithful and without sinful distractions.   If television, movies, books, or even sometimes people darken your perspective or create doubts, then swap them out for things that bolster your faith.   Set a routine of study and prayer.  Prayer is incredible, but didn't come easy to me.  Study doesn't always have to be sitting and ready scriptures or Come Follow Me, though that is important.  It could be listening to talks or reading other faith-building material.   Form a routine so that it becomes habit.  

    Third, sometimes we carry guilt and don't even realize it.  Things we need to repent for and/or resolve.  They don't have to be sins, but could just be things that weigh heavy on our hearts.   

    Maybe none of these apply to you, but from time to time they do apply to me so I thought it important enough to share.
  19. Haha
    askandanswer reacted to slamjet in No longer giving a darn   
    Next step, yelling at the neighborhood kids to get off your lawn.
  20. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Vort in No longer giving a darn   
    I care a great deal what my wife thinks of me. I also care what my children think of me. To a slightly lesser extent, I care what my siblings and close cousins think of me. I care what my bishop thinks of me, and my fellow quorum and ward members. I do care what close friends think of me. In a different sense, I care what my boss thinks of me, and what my landlord/landlady think of me (us). I don't really much care what Seattle leftists think of me, though I prefer to fly under their hateful, intolerant radar. In general, I don't care very much what society at large thinks of me, so long as I don't get beat up in the halls or prevented from worshipping God and rearing my family as I see fit.
    But mostly, I care what God thinks of me. Except he never tells me.
    I believe the "I no longer give a darn what others think" refers primarily to the last sentence in my first paragraph. Most of humanity lives under a sort of common set of social expectations. Today, those social expectations include supporting a woman's "right" to terminate her fetus' life and the obvious beauty and necessity of "protecting" (read: promoting) the homosexual lifestyle. Since I support neither of these things (and violate many other terms of the unwritten social expectations list), I am on the outside. I'm not in the Cool Kids' Club. And I'm okay with that. I Don't Care. I don't give a darn what they think of me, so long as they leave me my essential liberties.
    I also think the "I no longer give a darn what others think" refers in a deep, foundational way to the first sentence of my second paragraph. I want to please my Father and my Savior. If I could know their will perfectly, I would strive to live it, consequences be damned. I will choose them before friends and family, even before my children and my wife (though reluctantly—I guess I would secretly still give a darn what they thought).
    In any case, I don't think "I no longer give a darn what others think" is flipping the bird to the rest of the world at large. I think it is a statement of priority.
  21. Like
    askandanswer reacted to marge in A Pentacostal Reads the BoM   
    With regards to the lifespan of early biblical figures, God for some reason decided that living that long was a bad move so he cut it down to 120 years (I find it super interesting that the maximum lifespan for humans is 120 - I think there was one person who lived until 122)  A lot of Genesis is focussed on Genetics, kill the giants, wipe out this city etc etc. Maybe that's why there was a flood in the first place, to wipe out the bad genetics? (Genesis 6:4 for example produced abominable offspring in the eyes of God). I don't know but I'll be sure to ask when I get to heaven 😂
    I think people wrote down with sincerity what they saw, what was passed down by verbal knowledge for probably 1000s of years, and what they felt guided by God to record.  I think it's better to compare it to a child looking at something they can't possibly understand and trying to explain it.  A child's description of seeing a rocket ship take off would be a lot different to yours or my version of the same story.  
    I think the bible is a record of people trying their best to explain something they don't (and can't) truely understand with Gods guidance.  That doesn't make it not the word of God.
  22. Thanks
    askandanswer got a reaction from mirkwood in Disney wokeness   
    The idea that we should be morally consistent in our boycotts and bans doesn't seem to fit well with the idea that it is wise to pick our battles.
  23. Thanks
    askandanswer got a reaction from mirkwood in Disney wokeness   
    The idea that we should be morally consistent in our boycotts and bans doesn't seem to fit well with the idea that it is wise to pick our battles.
  24. Like
    askandanswer reacted to SilentOne in Easter Season 2022   
    As this Easter season approaches, and always, we rejoice in the most meaningful invitation ever extended to mankind. It is the invitation to come unto Christ. And we’re all invited. The scriptures are replete with that glorious invitation, which is beautifully summarized in the hymn:
    Come unto Jesus from ev’ry nation,
    From ev’ry land and isle of the sea.
    Unto the high and lowly in station,
    Ever he calls, “Come to me.”
    The Savior extends His generous invitation simply because He loves us and He knows we need Him. He can help us and heal us. He understands us because of His own experiences. The scriptures report: “And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind …, that he may know … how to succor his people according to their infirmities” (Alma 7:11–12). We want to come unto Christ because it is only in Him and through Him that we can return to the Father.
    - Margaret D. Nadauld
    Sunday Morning Session of General Conference, April 1998
  25. Like
    askandanswer reacted to Anddenex in Mosiah 27:13   
    The primary doctrine in the gospel of Jesus Christ is agency; however, intertwined with the agency of man is another very important doctrine and that is the "foreknowledge" of God which takes into account the agency of his sons and daughters.
    In scripture, I find how Satan seeks to overthrow God's work, but then we read how according to the foreknowledge of God no one is able to stop the work from progressing. And yet, that progression even takes almost two millennia to restore the gospel of Jesus Christ.
    In this light, we are able to see then how perspective is vastly important, and why the Spirit is very important because it helps us to see things as they really are, were, and will be. As to the Lord's perspective and the Father's perspective no unhallowed hand will stop this work from progressing. They aren't seeing with natural eyes.
    We only have to look at the beginning of the Church, church history, to see how the transgression of the Lord's covenanted people can hinder the work, but the work of the Lord still progresses in the direction his foreknowledge takes. The fact we are not living the law of consecration right now is evidence to the transgression of the Lord's people that stop "a" work from progressing, but not the work in totality.
    Right now, as members of the Church we to some degree are hindering the work from progressing as fast as it could be. Those who have left the Church, due to transgression (all of them), to some degree hinder the progression, but they do not stop it no matter how hard they try to convince themselves they are now doing the right thing in fighting against the Lord -- kicking against the pricks.
    The most important detail though, as to my knowledge (right now), we are the only generation to receive a promise that the Church will never apostatize ever again -- collectively. So, in that light, no unhallowed hand will stop the work from progressing, because there will always be a generation (even if a fourth of the covenanted members) who will continue the work forward -- always.