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About dsnell

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    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

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  1. Concerning my comments about Pres. Oaks -- I don't have any qualms about what he taught, but I could understand how some people (not just opponents of the Church) could have been discouraged or offended by the *way* he presented the doctrine. I think part of the problem for a lot of people was that it *is* foundational doctrine. People know where the Church stands. So I think it came off as patronizing or twisting the knife for some. But again, he taught truth. I guess in the article the other examples I used were of prophets pretty clearly making mistakes, so I could have handled the Pres. Oaks example more clearly, because I really don't think he technically did anything wrong.
  2. Valid interpretation, thank you.
  3. Thank you for the apologetics :). Granted, the lyric is "Gods" with a big "G," as opposed to "gods" with a little "g." I've been led to believe there's a difference between the two. But I see your point. I apologize if my opinion rubbed you the wrong way.
  4. Fair enough. Your opinion is valid. I'm splitting hairs here, but if we're talking about what the lyric implies: "Mingle," according to the all-knowing interweb, means to "move freely around a place or at a social function, associating with others." And that is the imagery it produces in my mind (because that's what the word means). I don't think it's an interpretation so far out there to be worthy of the title "made-up nonsense." I think it's an artistic representation, however a misrepresentation of what we doctrinally believe Joseph did or is doing. The other definition is to "mix or cause to mix together." It's a fact that many people think we worship Joseph Smith. "Mixing" Joseph with the Godhead doesn't help, IMO. To us, who are familiar with Joseph and our doctrine, it might not bother us. But to outsiders it's just one more reason to think we're weird. And I am all for answering tough questions, talking about deification, and having missionary moments, but there's also a reason why the missionaries start with "God is our loving Heavenly Father," and not, "God lives on a planet near Kolob." But again, I have opinions about the hymn, but I'm not losing sleep over it. I'm happy to agree to disagree.
  5. I agree, as far as we know doctrinally, Joseph Smith is with everyone else in the Spirit World teaching those that didn't have the opportunity to learn about Christ in their lifetime. I don't think he's mingling with Gods (at least in any way I feel like is implied in the song). But if you take that to mean his First Vision experience, more power to you. In my opinion, if "death cannot conquer the hero again" refers to spiritual death, does that imply that Joseph had died spiritually before? Or what does the "again" refer to? "Hail to the prophet ascended to heaven" (obviously referring to Joseph's state after his death.) "Traitors and tyrants now fight him in vain" (they fight him in vain because he's dead.) "Mingling with Gods he can plan for his brethren" (IMO, he can now mingle with Gods (whatever that means) because he's dead.) "Death cannot conquer the hero again" (Because he's already dead, is going to be resurrected, and won't be able to die again.) That's how I see it, but hey, music is art and art is subject to interpretation, so your opinion is as valid as any. If that's what it means to you, then that's what it means to you and I have no right to tell you differently. But those are just my opinions on the matter. Not trying to start a firestorm. We're all on the same team.
  6. Hey man/woman, I'm not out picketing on Temple Square. Just sharing my opinion. Not trying to bash Joseph Smith. And yes, I think that if a hymn teaches something that's not totally correct, I think we should change it. I'm not getting my knickers in a twist over it, though. I see no problem with Families Can Be Together Forever.
  7. It's not the word "praise" that necessarily bothers me. It's a combination of a bunch of factors (some of which I've mentioned in earlier comments). As Latter-day Saints we're all well aware that we don't worship Joseph Smith and this hymn isn't meant to be worshiping him. But whether or not that is our intention, perception is everything. And I think this hymn, while awesome, could give newcomers the wrong idea in the same way that early church artwork gave people (and still gives people) the wrong idea about some things. I could totally get behind keeping the hymn and changing a couple of the lyrics, though, as has been done to it in the past. When I hear "Mingling with Gods" I see Joseph Smith hanging out with a bunch of toga'd gods on a cloud sipping mimosas haha. When I hear "Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old," I see biblical prophets kneeling on either side of Joseph as he "enters his kingdom" for some kind of celestial coronation ceremony. Idk. Obviously these are just my subjective impressions and opinions, I just thing the song goes a little too far. As I've always understood this song to be a eulogy for Joseph, I've never understood "mingling with Gods" to be referring to the First Vision. Also the following line, "death cannot conquer the hero again," indicates to me (IMO) that the mingling is taking place after his death. Could he actually be mingling with the Godhead? I guess so, but that's a pretty big speculation to make based on one line of hymn text. I simply think it's doctrinally sketchy. But again, feel free to shut that down haha. Just my opinion. Still love the song.
  8. You just might! Seems like a good place to bounce ideas off of people, or to have ideas quickly shut down haha.
  9. I mean ... maybe? The implied assumption is that God the Father visited Joseph Smith in the Spirit World (which is unprecedented as far as I know) or that Joseph is resurrected and ... exalted? I dunno. I think the safest answer we have (IMO) is that Joseph Smith is in the Spirit World along with most everyone else, awaiting the resurrection. In the Spirit World I gueeeeeess he could be "mingling" with Christ and the Holy Ghost ... but that doesn't make a ton of sense to me, nor does it sound like what the lyric is trying to imply. That said, I really don't know what the lyric is trying to imply. Based on "Ascended to heaven" maybe William Phelps thought Joseph was exalted already. No idea.
  10. Haha you've got a point. I guess there are some questions I wouldn't be able to answer. Not even being sarcastic, if you have an explanation I'd love to hear it. What Gods is Joseph mingling with? I honestly don't know how that line works.
  11. I hope people don't get that impression, but in the lyrics he's "Mingling with Gods," "Great is his glory and endless his priesthood," he's "Crowned in the midst of the prophets of old," and he's entering his own "kingdom." I hope people don't get the deified vibe but I'd understand if they did.
  12. I guess I sort of look at this hymn in the same way I look at a lot of Church artwork. For example, below is a famous painting of Joseph Smith translating the plates ... but we know now that that's not really how he translated them. Most of the time the plates were covered, he used the seer stone in the hat, etc. It's a great work of art, but not totally accurate, you know what I mean? In the same sense, I don't think Joseph is mingling with Gods, nor, if we want to get really anal about doctrine, has he "ascended to heaven" (unless you're referring to the Spirit World). But I agree that there needs to be some poetic license with hymns. And indeed the lyrics were first a poem before the music was added. And of course I don't think we need to amend the lyrics to include an enumeration of Joseph's flaws haha.
  13. See my reply to Emmanuel for more details, but to elaborate a little more... I agree that the hymn is great at uniting members in the faith. It's undeniably a rousing and majestic hymn. But yes, I think it can be interpreted as Joseph-Smith-worship. I know that's not what we're doing by any means, but we're hailing, praising, honoring, and blessing Joseph. He's a hero, crowned in the midst of prophets, great is his glory, the earth lauds his fame, Kings are extolling him, and he's mingling with Gods. One of the biggest misconceptions about our faith (IMO) is that our prophets are infallible, and I think this hymn doesn't help with that idea very much. The "Mingling with Gods" line is definitely bothersome. Doctrinally, Joseph is in the Spirit World like everyone else. So I guess I don't understand which Gods (big "G") he is mingling with? I don't think we need to hide our doctrine of deification, but I do think it's a subject that deserves a little more tact than this lyric gives it. But I guess I never understood it to be a reference to deification, since Joseph is not deity to anyone at this point. Anyway, again, I think it's a fabulous hymn and doesn't bother those that are familiar with our faith, but to many others I think it could be misleading. But most others seem intent on keeping it around so you're probably right about overthinking it.
  14. I agree, we need to drop some of the overly solemn hymns. When it comes to Praise to the Man, I just think that if I were visiting a Latter-day Saint congregation for the first time I would have a lot of questions after listening to that hymn. What Gods is Joseph mingling with? (this is a huge one) I thought Latter-day Saints believed in one God? Why are they singing about multiple Gods (big "G")? (another important one) Why is Joseph entering his own kingdom and not the Kingdom of God? (makes sense to us, but might seem weird to others) Why is he being crowned? Is he the king of the prophets? If so, why? Anyway, I'm probably overthinking it (though from personal experience, investigators have gotten hung up over the "Mingling with Gods" line). I guess I just think that if it were removed it would cause more good than harm. Don't get me wrong, I'm Team Joseph through and through, I just think this hymn can be misleading. Though it would be painful to sacrifice one of the more upbeat hymns.