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LeKook

Another weird question from me - regarding revelation

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Note: Please don't read more into this question than what it is! :)

My question:

Is it out of the realm of possibility that the average Christian can have visionary and/or revelatory experiences outside of the scope of strictly personal revelation?

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Note: Please don't read more into this question than what it is! :)

My question:

Is it out of the realm of possibility that the average Christian can have visionary and/or revelatory experiences outside of the scope of strictly personal revelation?

By definition, any and every revelation is personal.

If you are asking if "the average Christian" can be given revelation of God's will and direction toward others, the answer is generally no. God reveals his will to people according to their stewardship.

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Of course it is not outside the realm. He did it with Martin Luther and many others throughout time. I have even heard leaders of the church pray for inspiration for government and civic leaders. Individuals can indeed receive inspiration for others, just not revelation that trumps the prophets.....see the results of seer stone ground to dust just talked about in conference.

In otherwords, you are not going to receive revelation for the church that trumps the President's of the church. But it is possible that a Christian sunday school teacher could receive revelation for their sunday school class the same as an LDS sunday school teacher could receive inspiration for their class.

-RM

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Note: Please don't read more into this question than what it is! :)

My question:

Is it out of the realm of possibility that the average Christian can have visionary and/or revelatory experiences outside of the scope of strictly personal revelation?

Sure, if God deems it necessary. I seem to recall at least one of the early apostles/prophets had a friend who had a correct vision concerning him and about the gospel of the lord before he was introduced to the restoration.

But from the LDS standpoint they dont have the promise of continued revelation, or assured revelation.

Edited by Blackmarch

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By definition, any and every revelation is personal.

If you are asking if "the average Christian" can be given revelation of God's will and direction toward others, the answer is generally no. God reveals his will to people according to their stewardship.

I know you specified you were speaking generally, but family is a good situation in which stewardship occurs without any setting apart, calling, or even being LDS.

Of course it is not outside the realm. He did it with Martin Luther and many others throughout time. I have even heard leaders of the church pray for inspiration for government and civic leaders.

Were they receiving revelation concerning others though? If say Mr. Mayor is inspired and proposes X legislation as a solution to troubling his community has he received revelation for himself or others? What he could do to best serve in his (non-religious) stewardship? Or what other people should be doing?

You run into similar situations in the Church. I may receive revelation that I should talk to somebody and say hi, and be friendly. I wouldn't expect to receive revelation that Brother Smith (assuming a lack of any stewardship here) needs to go talk to somebody and say hi. Though to be fair the distinction I'm making may be a fairly fine one (and mostly in my head), but it's the difference between:

The Lord has told me that I need to/should do X and the Lord has told me that you need to/should do X.

This post is rather obviously heavily influenced by how Vort parsed the OP's question.

Edited by Dravin

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I know you specified you were speaking generally, but family is a good situation in which stewardship occurs without any setting apart, calling, or even being LDS.

I don't believe I said anything about being set apart. I specified "stewardship", and I agree that parenting is a divine stewardship.

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I don't believe I said anything about being set apart. I specified "stewardship", and I agree that parenting is a divine stewardship.

You didn't, I did, I mentioned it because those elements tend to be common for divine stewardship (as noted, family is not one of these). I was just piping up that non-LDS do have stewardship. I suspect though, as I imagine you did as well, that the OP wasn't thinking about parents receiving revelation for children but something 'grander*'.

* Actually such an event is pretty grand when you stop and consider it, but roll with me here.

Edited by Dravin

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I think we sometimes receive revelation on things that include things outside our personal stewardship but only for ourselves. Never outside church doctrine though. For instance we are never going to get revelation to have extra wives unless God tells the prophet. No matter how sure a person might be about that. lol.

If we come across a scripture or situation that has us concerned then yes we might get revelation about that. That does not make us the spokesman for that however. :D

Another example might be like my husbands gg grandfather recieved revelation and visions that told him about a book that would come out of the New World. That it was the word of God. These visions he apparently did not tell anyone till he heard of the missionaries from America. Then he asked where they were and went to find them. Now those were pretty amazing revelations but they were for HIM and later as part of his testimony.

Edited by annewandering

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You didn't, I did, I mentioned it because those elements tend to be common for divine stewardship (as noted, family is not one of these). I was just piping up that non-LDS do have stewardship. I suspect though, as I imagine you did as well, that the OP wasn't thinking about parents receiving revelation for children but something 'grander*'.

* Actually such an event is pretty grand when you stop and consider it, but roll with me here.

Agreed, on all points.

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If I received revelation that wasn't necessarily personal revelation - let's say, it's something about an acquaintance, or a situation - I wouldn't accept it if it contradicted scripture. That's in the "no-brainer" category for me. :)

As I have no children, yes, I am talking in the "grander" sense (for lack of a better term, LOL!!).

God can talk to anyone in any walk of life about anything, I'm certain, but since the concept of personal revelation is something entirely foreign to me from my prior religious experience outside of the LDS church, I'm just trying to get something of a benchmark of what is, or isn't, or how we can know, if revelation (personal, family, social sphere, or ... grander) is actually from God.

I'm not sure this better explains the question or not, but as Dravin phrased it, roll with me here. LOL!!!

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It's happened to me. Unless God includes an imperative to act, the gift of discernment outside of stewardship is for personal growth and development. The burden of discernment is understood to be very real, whether we are expected to act on it or not.

HiJolly

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First let me say that it's a little confusing for you to say personal revelation isn't personal revelation just because it's not about *me*.

So if I get revelation about my neighbor's cat, it's still personal revelation in that *I* am the one receiving it.

Do we agree, or am I off base?

HJ

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First let me say that it's a little confusing for you to say personal revelation isn't personal revelation just because it's not about *me*.

So if I get revelation about my neighbor's cat, it's still personal revelation in that *I* am the one receiving it.

Do we agree, or am I off base?

HJ

No, I think we agree. I mean personal revelation as in it's revealed to me, regardless of who/what it's about. :)

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Ok. Here's what I mean. My wife & I were visiting my wife's sister in their new home. My wife's sister's husband's sister (!) walks in w/ her boyfriend and the instant I lay eyes on her I know two things: (1)She's pregnant and (2)she doesn't need to marry her boyfriend (as in, she really shouldn't).

I felt like, "why would God tell me this, unless He needed her to know it?" But seriously, there was zero stewardship there. I thought about telling her brother, but since he & his wife had done the same thing in their youth, I felt I could not. Too ticklish, if you know what I mean.

So I didn't say anything, she & he married, he abused her & the kids and alcohol and things were really bad for a while. Eventually she left and things are better now. For a while there I felt personally responsible because I didn't warn her. I felt awful.

Now I understand the whole picture, and I'm good with it. But it was really difficult there for a while.

HiJolly

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In my case, it has to do with having the gift of discernment and how to work with that gift.

If you knew all the secrets of people around you, could you mentally and emotionally survive it? Or would you freak out & end up in the funny farm?

HiJolly

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Ok. Here's what I mean. My wife & I were visiting my wife's sister in their new home. My wife's sister's husband's sister (!) walks in w/ her boyfriend and the instant I lay eyes on her I know two things: (1)She's pregnant and (2)she doesn't need to marry her boyfriend (as in, she really shouldn't).

This is the kind of thing I'm talking about, where it comes to revelation about another person or situation. In this case, you got a type of knowing "out of nowhere" of what type of person this was. You just knew, and that was it. Been through the same thing myself. Now, what do you think the outcome would have been had you said something? A falling out with family members, maybe? I definitely see what you mean about it being "too ticklish".

Thing is, this has happened to me too, and I'm at a loss as to why I should be privy to something that I'm sure is factual information that outside of revelation I would not otherwise have known. It's just a situation where I know that I know but I don't know how I know.

It's happened twice now since my confirmation, two entirely separate situations. The first having to do with a family member who I hadn't spoken to but knew was in trouble and what the trouble was, but not knowing why I was supposed to know this. As it turns out what I knew was in fact, well, FACT. LOL!!!

The other one having to do with something going on with a certain group of people, and all I keep wondering is, "Why me? Why am I supposed to know this, and not the people involved?" Thing is, this second situation, the stuff I know is very good, very encouraging. But I'm not sure I should share it with them.

It's all very new to me and I'm frankly a bit, not confused (wrong word), maybe mystified, by it. My M.O. so far is to keep my mouth shut and pray about it. That's all I can do, right?

Thanks for sharing your experience, it takes some of the weight off my mind. :)

Edited by LeKook
Poor English!

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In my case, it has to do with having the gift of discernment and how to work with that gift.

If you knew all the secrets of people around you, could you mentally and emotionally survive it? Or would you freak out & end up in the funny farm?

No, and while this has only happened twice, it has happened twice in just shy of 3 weeks, and to me that's just strange. I guess I could just pray that I don't get any more information like this, but isn't some of this experience intended to help me learn something??

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No, and while this has only happened twice, it has happened twice in just shy of 3 weeks, and to me that's just strange. I guess I could just pray that I don't get any more information like this, but isn't some of this experience intended to help me learn something??

Possibility... You are learning and seeking answers now aren't you? ;)

Other possibilities I can think of are testing to see how you respond to things of the spirit and/or preparing you for whatever it is that is to come in your life

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Possibility... You are learning and seeking answers now aren't you? ;)

Other possibilities I can think of are testing to see how you respond to things of the spirit and/or preparing you for whatever it is that is to come in your life

True, all of it. :) I'm not letting this sidetrack me, either. Not fixated on it, in other words. Learning from my own experiences and those of others who've gone through it. Not sure what any of it means "in the big scheme of things", but hey, it's all good. :)

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This is the kind of thing I'm talking about, where it comes to revelation about another person or situation. In this case, you got a type of knowing "out of nowhere" of what type of person this was. You just knew, and that was it. Been through the same thing myself. Now, what do you think the outcome would have been had you said something? A falling out with family members, maybe? I definitely see what you mean about it being "too ticklish".

I know now that I was not supposed to say anything. I personally had to wrestle with the information and the situation in order to understand why not acting was not only acceptable, but truly the only righteous option. It goes against my natural desire to "fix things"! It was horrible to watch the story unfold!

Now I look at this (and other similar situations) and I think of the problem of theodicy. It applies directly. Wow. If I am to learn how to be like Jesus (God), then this is a lesson I HAVE to learn, know and master. So I know it is a lesson only God can teach, and it is for me personally.

The more we obtain to the Gift of discernment, the more we must understand this. Every bishop has, as a part of the mantle of his calling, the gift of discernment. So it's not just for the next life.

Thing is, this has happened to me too, and I'm at a loss as to why I should be privy to something that I'm sure is factual information that outside of revelation I would not otherwise have known. It's just a situation where I know that I know but I don't know how I know.

You know it because you shared in a limited way and for only a short moment, the Mind of God. It's always there, waiting for us to intersect with it/Him. But we don't consciously control it, normally speaking.

It's happened twice now since my confirmation, two entirely separate situations. The first having to do with a family member who I hadn't spoken to but knew was in trouble and what the trouble was, but not knowing why I was supposed to know this. As it turns out what I knew was in fact, well, FACT. LOL!!!

Yeah, it's amazing and wondrous when that happens.

The other one having to do with something going on with a certain group of people, and all I keep wondering is, "Why me? Why am I supposed to know this, and not the people involved?" Thing is, this second situation, the stuff I know is very good, very encouraging. But I'm not sure I should share it with them.

No, unless you are directly prompted to do so, you should not.

It's all very new to me and I'm frankly a bit, not confused (wrong word), maybe mystified, by it. My M.O. so far is to keep my mouth shut and pray about it. That's all I can do, right?

"mystified" is an enormously excellent word to use! Beautiful!

Also *think* about it. Ponder it. Savor the flavor of it. This is God. Like Moses, someday you may have to discern when such an experience is actually not from God. And then you'll want to recognize the difference and not be deceived. "Where is thy glory...?" -- what an excellent question!

Thanks for sharing your experience, it takes some of the weight off my mind. :)

I'm so glad!

HJ

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No, and while this has only happened twice, it has happened twice in just shy of 3 weeks, and to me that's just strange.

The Gift of the Holy Ghost intensifies and focuses our natural Gifts, to where they become quite amazing, if we don't fear them too much. You appear to have the gift of discernment. I was told in my Patriarchal Blessing that I have that gift.

I guess I could just pray that I don't get any more information like this, but isn't some of this experience intended to help me learn something??

Yes! Consider how God must know all and yet He does not step in and 'fix' things, unless the rather strict rules of faith are met! How that must hurt, emotionally speaking! What restraint! And people actually think it means there is no God, because He stays His hand! Oh the grief He must experience, as He sees it all unfold!

HiJolly

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Guest Magen_Avot

I first looked at LDS.net yesterday and found this posting which caused me to register today. This is a topic of particular interest and I enjoyed the comments very much especially HiJolly and LeKook. I highly value all the comments.

If one thinks about it, answers to prayer, blessings dictated by the spirit or any other form we receive inspiration are at least revelation and may even be prophesy when spoken and about the future. I don't think it is universally accepted that "all men" (including female and non-members), have at least one gift of the spirit and the gift of revelation is one of them. I do believe they are independent of the church, however, in the church the Prophet has the priesthood keys to direct the affairs of the church and there are others who hold keys as well. All other callings within the church have authority delegated to them by those that hold the keys or authority to direct those efforts such as the Bishop. I realize this is basic to the understanding of most and for that I apologize.

My experience suggests that having the gift of revelation, such as getting inspiration about someone not within our 'jurisdiction' (as discussed above) is suppressed as opposed to just bing rare. I feel this is likely due to the box or restrictions we sometimes use to determine what is given by the spirit and what is not. (some may feel they don't get answers to prayer and may need these 'rules' of thumb and I certainly accept that with qualification). Let me share a personal experience.

My daughter brought home a 'fiance'. :eek: The spirit said, "Don't worry about it, it's not going to happen". So I didn't worry about it,... and it didn't happen:D

In Oct 1986 the Prophet announced that seventies in the stakes would be disbanded and absorbed by EQ's and HP groups. Apparently some 10 or 11 months prior a certain scripture (can't locate it right now in the D&C) was discussed as to it's meaning and was determined to mean that seventies were not meant for the stakes. Three weeks prior to conference I was reading the same verse in the D&C and the spirit told me, with great force, that the day will come when the seventies would be removed from the stakes. I told my wife. I told several members in the EQ too. What do you think the EQ said? They said that it was from the wrong spirit because I couldn't receive revelation for the church. :huh: Ummm,... I felt it was given for the edification of the saints in my area at the time. Isn't that why revelation/prophesy and all gifts of the spirit are given?

Edification. Sometimes it feels like some would have us "follow the spirit" less and blindly "follow" more:confused:. I don't state this to be derogatory, but to encourage those who feel these gifts and to empower them to bless and edify others around them. But it's not always that easy.

At a recent baptism of a child I was 'directed' by the spirit to stand and witness. I didn't want to do it. I was prompted three times. I requested permission and stood to tell the young girl that she was to be a 'mother in Israel'. I hated to say it, and still do. But the spirit was strong and others felt it too, and wept. Why? I didn't know what it meant and, well... it was embarrassing :P. Wasn't it a no brainer? I mean, really? a mother? Yeah, hello!! But I could not deny the spirit. It was done. I spent a couple of days trying to figure it out and found in Judges ch 4/5 that Deborah was given the title, "Mother in Israel" denoting something of a leader among women. Hmmm. Makes more sense now but I have no idea why me and why then,... in front of a bunch of people. I got a lot of comments of which some were, "I guess it's ok since your the EQ President (or home teacher). I would hope that one could feel the spirit, know it's true and out the window with trying to determine if it's of God or not by boxed rules. The spirit does the testifying. All I could say was, "It wasn't my words."

At least I only had to stand and speak; poor Nephi had to cut Laben's head off. I am so glad to read that others are hearing the spirit and acting/being a witness when needed. I can’t share all the personal experiences I've had but they are many and uplifting and some really do challenge the box rules as I think of them. Thank you for this thread, it makes me feel so good.

Edited by Magen_Avot
Fix typos and structure

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