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On 10/20/2020 at 2:18 PM, prisonchaplain said:

 We love our country. We disagree on how best to improve society. :lookaround:

I have a really hard time believing that those that burn property (including the flag), riot or loot can qualify for "love" of country.  I am not sure I can even go along with those that give quarter to those that break the law for political reasons.

 

The Traveler 

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On 10/21/2020 at 6:31 AM, Carborendum said:

I can't disagree with you regarding the state of the union in this generation.  I just disagree with your take on it.

What was the "solution" in the days of Lehi?  Yes, cry repentance.  Turn to the Lord.  And as individuals and small groups, we can.  Lehi, anyone?  Daniel?  Today... The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

For others, what was the Lord's solution?  Yes, he gave Israel every opportunity to repent and return to him.  That is always a better solution and better scenario... if the people will actually take advantage of that option.  But in Lehi's day and in our day, too many will not turn to the Lord.

Sodom and Gomorrah were given SO much leeway.  Only FIVE righteous people.  But those five were not enough to save the cities of the plains.  Instead, the Lord told them to get out while He destroyed the cities.

Israel was given SO much leeway, SO many times.  But no number was given.  Lehi was told to leave.  I'm sure others were too.  But the solution was to replace all the wicked rulers with a less wicked, but still wicked ruler -- Nebuchadnezzar.  Yes, yes, I've said it before.  But if you can indulge your anti-Trump hobby horse again, I can indulge this parallel once again.  I don't think Daniel and his friends would have ever said that Nebuchadnezzar was righteous.  He even said otherwise.  But he recognized the course of events that the wickedness of Israel brought upon the nation and people.  And he realized they were the judgments of God.

In our day, God does not raise up or take down our leaders.  We elect them.  As a people of differing backgrounds, oipinions, perspectives, and values, we elect them.  Because of the level of wickedness of the nation, the ENTIRE nation suffers.  The people simply will not accept a Ted Cruz.  They outright showed they would not accept a "Bleedin' Mormon."  I did an analysis of the numbers.  Basically Romney lost the swing state votes by the same number of evangelical Christians in those states.  The people don't want such leaders.  So, we have to suffer the consequences.

The Lord accepts the lesser of two evils for leaders of nations.  Why is it such a crime if we do the same?  We root for better; we campaign for better, we try to convince others that we should look for better.  But in the end, the voice of the people goes elsewhere.  And we're left with the unenviable position of the Samuel Principle.  "OK, if you're not going to vote for virtuous leaders, there's nothing I can do about it.  But to minimize the damage..."

In the meantime, I'd echo @mirkwood's advice.  Leave Jerusalem and go into the wilderness with provisions.  I'm speaking metaphorically mostly.  One of the reasons I chose the location I did was that I was close enough to a major city to have business dealings.  But I was far enough away that the fire and brimstone won't quite hit me.

Yes, if these shadows remain unaltered by the future... there may be no stopping it.  All we can do is "pull a Lehi."  Cry repentance, then take off.

I agree with you about the need to “go into the wilderness” as much as possible—though of course, in a physical sense, I’m not sure there’s really anywhere left to go.  If we can rely on the prophecies that have come down from Brigham Young, Heber Kimball, Wilford Woodruff, and the like—our lot (or those of our children or grandchildren) will be to buckle down and stay away from the violence as best we can, avoiding alliances with any of the Babylonish factions that will be turning on each other and ultimately destroying themselves. 

But as for the “lesser of two evils”, I would reply as follows: 

1)  Our current commission is that “honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold; otherwise whatsoever is less than these cometh of evil.  And I give unto you a commandment, that ye shall forsake all evil and cleave unto all good, that ye shall live by every word which proceedeth forth out of the mouth of God.”  (D&C 98:10-11)

That instruction has not been revoked.  To throw our lot in with Trump, knowing what he is, to me risks forfeiting the commission and blessings promised on American citizens in these latter days, and amounts to us choosing to have God leave us to our own strength.  I understand why, in light of everything that’s happening on the left, many Saints feel they have no choice but to ally with Trump.  But I also believe that there is divine precedent for God promising deliverance to His people if they would just trust Him and avoid running to the nearest strongman (this theme consumes the book of Isaiah).  If God wants us to disregard D&C 98:10 and quietly submit ourselves to (and even support) leaders who are dishonest, foolish, and bad; then I’m reasonably confident that we’ll be hearing about it through proper channels.  But so far, that hasn’t happened. 

2)  The Bible is, as you suggest, a record of a wholly different society than our own; one where private citizens could not and did not expect to significantly influence public policy.  Jeremiah’s pro-Babylon agenda was not geared towards Judah’s populace, or even its rulers, helping Babylon to advance its interests or geopolitical standing; it was simply a pragmatic “look, if you fight this, you will die; so don’t fight it”.  (See Jeremiah 27.)  Nonresistance to a tyrant we didn’t choose, is very different than active support of a degenerate politician we did choose.   

3)  One issue with likening Trump to Nebuchadnezzar in this particular discussion (which, as I understand it, is the preservation of a western-style, individual-rights-oriented democratic republic as advocated by President Benson) is that Nebuchadnezzar was a *king* who oversaw high taxation, imprisonment without due process, and state-sanctioned murder and rape and prohibition of religious expression.   Daniel and his friends lived out their lives as slaves (very comfortable slaves, but slaves nonetheless) to Nebuchadnezzar and his successors.  Indeed, Nebuchadnezzar is the embodiment of everything Benson abhorred. 

If we’re at the point where we feel like, for the sake of self-preservation, God wants us to submit to someone like Nebuchadnezzar in order to prevent a worse thing from happening; then it’s probably time for us to admit that the American experiment has failed, resign ourselves to serfdom, and leave it to future generations to reclaim the traditional American liberties that we grew up with.

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22 hours ago, Just_A_Guy said:

If we’re at the point where we feel like, for the sake of self-preservation, God wants us to submit to someone like Nebuchadnezzar in order to prevent a worse thing from happening; then it’s probably time for us to admit that the American experiment has failed, resign ourselves to serfdom, and leave it to future generations to reclaim the traditional American liberties that we grew up with.

Surely the American experiment hasn’t failed yet.

But we have seen the experiment fail before.

Ether 6:23 And now behold, this was grievous unto them. And the brother of Jared said unto them: Surely this thing leadeth into captivity.

I was hopeful that Pence would become President.

But I fear that Kamela will soon be our President with someone like Gavin Newsom as her Vice President.

Some may see this possibility as 16 years of bliss.  But I agree with the brother of Jared.

”Surely this thing leadeth into captivity.”

 

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On 10/25/2020 at 12:06 AM, Just_A_Guy said:

I agree with you about the need to “go into the wilderness” as much as possible—though of course, in a physical sense, I’m not sure there’s really anywhere left to go.  If we can rely on the prophecies that have come down from Brigham Young, Heber Kimball, Wilford Woodruff, and the like—our lot (or those of our children or grandchildren) will be to buckle down and stay away from the violence as best we can, avoiding alliances with any of the Babylonish factions that will be turning on each other and ultimately destroying themselves. 

But as for the “lesser of two evils”, I would reply as follows: ...

If we’re at the point where we feel like, for the sake of self-preservation, God wants us to submit to someone like Nebuchadnezzar in order to prevent a worse thing from happening; then it’s probably time for us to admit that the American experiment has failed, resign ourselves to serfdom, and leave it to future generations to reclaim the traditional American liberties that we grew up with.

I get the impression that you fee like the King of Israel in a no win situation.

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1 hour ago, Carborendum said:

I get the impression that you fee like the King of Israel in a no win situation.

Quite to the contrary!  The fact that we *haven’t* been authoritatively told to submit to Trump and that D&C 98:10 remains in force, tells me that God is planning to deliver us (not necessarily the entire USA, but us) in spectacular fashion—if only we will accept Him as our deliverer, rather than turning to some political counterfeit.

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FYI: I'm not referring to Trump or Biden by this particular post just a story that comes to mind.
I'm reminded of Thomas L. Kane (Kanesville, Iowa & Kanesville Tabernacle):

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Thomas Leiper Kane (January 27, 1822 – December 26, 1883) was an American attorney, abolitionist, philanthropist, and military officer who was influential in the western migration of the Latter-day Saint movement and served as a Union Army colonel and general of volunteers in the American Civil War. He received a brevet promotion to major general for gallantry at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Origin of Winter Quarters:

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With the help of his father, Kane obtained US government permission for the refugee Mormons to occupy Pottawattamie and Omaha Indian lands along the Missouri.

A great example of a non-member who was moved upon by the Lord to accomplish his goals.
Do I believe the Lord still moves upon imperfect govt. and military leaders to accomplish his goals - yes I do.
Hey, there are no perfect ones to choose from anyways 😉

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On 10/26/2020 at 11:45 AM, Just_A_Guy said:

Quite to the contrary!  The fact that we *haven’t* been authoritatively told to submit to Trump and that D&C 98:10 remains in force, tells me that God is planning to deliver us (not necessarily the entire USA, but us) in spectacular fashion—if only we will accept Him as our deliverer, rather than turning to some political counterfeit.

I believe the commandment that we're supposed to vote for leaders of virtue to be focused on the wrong things -- especially lately.  Consider the purpose of government per D&C 134..

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1 We believe that governments were instituted of God for the benefit of man; and that he holds men accountable for their acts in relation to them, both in making laws and administering them, for the good and safety of society.

He holds men accountable for what?  Law of Chastity?  In an ecclesiastical sense, yes.  But in a governmental sense, no.  The laws and administration of them is what makes a virtuous man in government. (I cannot prove, but can almost guarantee that apostles voted for both Kennedy and Clinton).

Quote

2 We believe that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the protection of life.

Has not Trump done all these things?

Quote

3 We believe that all governments necessarily require civil officers and magistrates to enforce the laws of the same; and that such as will administer the law in equity and justice should be sought for and upheld by the voice of the people if a republic, or the will of the sovereign.

This entire verse deserves to be emphasized.

The "virtues" that we seek in public office are:

1) Will he protect and defend the Constitution?
2) Will he protect the rights to life, liberty, and property (pursuit of happiness) as indicated in the Declaration and codified in the Constitution?
3) Will he have enough of a control on his own passions that he will not break the law simply because he feels it's "the right thing to do at the moment?"
4) Will he apply the law in equity and justice to all?

Obama did none of these things.  I thought Turmp wouldn't either.  But he's proven time and time again, that he has.

The fact is that we definitely should turn to the Lord.  Absolutely agreee.  But if governments are supposed to be help meet the Church in securing our freedom to worship, wouldn't one of the most important criteria to vote on be the freedom of Religion?  You have to give Trump props for that much.

You're not going to vote for him.  This isn't about the election.  I'm trying to dig a bit and get to some fundamentals that inform this sort of decision.  Discussing it with you is helping me with that process.

After all is said and done, if Trump wins re-election, we will have a Mme Pres. Pelosi after a double assassination.  So, then we're subject to the other portion you mentioned.

I believe such a thing will cause the end of the nation as we know it.  So, what will be the mechanism by which we (the Church) will be gathered together?  Such a thing is prophesied.  But it seems that the "gathering" will be more of a spiritual gathering instead of a physical gathering.  The virtual services has only been a dry run before we really need to do this for governmental reasons.  Yet, for the sake of security, a geographical perimeter must still be necessary for the servicing of the Saints's physical and spiritual needs.

How do you think it might happen?  Actually, that's an impossible question to answer.  Can you think of some sort of mechanism that has some plausibility which could theoretically work?

Edited by Carborendum

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On 11/2/2020 at 5:37 AM, Carborendum said:

[1] I believe the commandment that we're supposed to vote for leaders of virtue to be focused on the wrong things -- especially lately.  Consider the purpose of government per D&C 134..

He holds men accountable for what?  Law of Chastity?  In an ecclesiastical sense, yes.  But in a governmental sense, no.  The laws and administration of them is what makes a virtuous man in government. (I cannot prove, but can almost guarantee that apostles voted for both Kennedy and Clinton).

Has not Trump done all these things?

This entire verse deserves to be emphasized.

The "virtues" that we seek in public office are:

1) Will he protect and defend the Constitution?
2) Will he protect the rights to life, liberty, and property (pursuit of happiness) as indicated in the Declaration and codified in the Constitution?
3) Will he have enough of a control on his own passions that he will not break the law simply because he feels it's "the right thing to do at the moment?"
4) Will he apply the law in equity and justice to all?

Obama did none of these things.  I thought Turmp wouldn't either.  But he's proven time and time again, that he has.

The fact is that we definitely should turn to the Lord.  Absolutely agreee.  But if governments are supposed to be help meet the Church in securing our freedom to worship, wouldn't one of the most important criteria to vote on be the freedom of Religion?  You have to give Trump props for that much.

You're not going to vote for him.  This isn't about the election.  I'm trying to dig a bit and get to some fundamentals that inform this sort of decision.  Discussing it with you is helping me with that process.

[2] After all is said and done, if Trump wins re-election, we will have a Mme Pres. Pelosi after a double assassination.  So, then we're subject to the other portion you mentioned.

I believe such a thing will cause the end of the nation as we know it.  So, what will be the mechanism by which we (the Church) will be gathered together?  Such a thing is prophesied.  But it seems that the "gathering" will be more of a spiritual gathering instead of a physical gathering.  The virtual services has only been a dry run before we really need to do this for governmental reasons.  Yet, for the sake of security, a geographical perimeter must still be necessary for the servicing of the Saints's physical and spiritual needs.

How do you think it might happen?  Actually, that's an impossible question to answer.  Can you think of some sort of mechanism that has some plausibility which could theoretically work?

So, I had drafted up a reply to this last week but never got around to actually posting it.  But, for what it's worth, here are my thoughts:

1.  I largely agree with your analysis of D&C 134.  Where we would disagree, is that you seem to suggest that D&C 134 abrogates—or at least, redefines--D&C 98.  I don’t think it does anything of the sort.

D&C 134 was authored by Oliver Cowdery and presented to the Church in Kirtland while Joseph Smith was away in Michigan.  The body of the church adopted it, and JS ratified it on his return (along with an “article on marriage” that proscribed polygamy, which JS also ratified and which the Church de-canonized decades later).

So while D&C 134 represents a lot of good republican (small “r”) horse sense—even *inspired* horse sense—about how democratic republic should be run and a religious institution’s place within such a republic; I would reject the suggestion that it constitutes the verbatim text of a revelation from God that was calculated to redefine or re-interpret a previous revelation received by Smith himself.

Are the factors in D&C 134 important?  Absolutely!  But they are built on an even more enduring foundation that the Lord had reiterated explicitly in D&C 98, and implicitly numerous times through the lessons of history of the Nephites and ancient Israel:  “When the wicked rule, the people mourn.”  (D&C 98:9)  *That* is the context of Section 98’s injunction, in the electoral context, that we seek honest, wise, and good men; and that we forsake all evil—and the Lord even warns us, right afterwards, that He will “try you and prove you herewith”.  I don’t know that I’d go so far as to assert that Trump represents that sort of divine trial and that a Latter-day Saint can only pass it by rejecting him—but it’s surely food for thought; and for what it’s worth, the Spirit has whispered that it *is* that sort of a trial for *me*.

I can give Trump props for what he has accomplished while still recognizing that his very situation is a result of our rejecting a divine Plan A.  David also deserved some praise for what he accomplished—but the fact is that if the people had listened to Samuel in the first place, David would never have been anything more than an obscure shepherd boy.

2.  I confess, I have no idea how a “gathering” would work in the context of the dissolution of the USA as we know it.  Prophecy says a lot of us—though not necessarily all—will be going to Missouri and building a physical city.  Current Church guidance—and prophecy (maybe?  I was pretty up on my LDS eschatology about 10-15 years ago; but I’ve forgotten a lot of it)—is that we build Zion in our own stakes; but I imagine that even some stakes will have to be evacuated (if only temporarily) in the coming chaos.  Even “virtual services”, it seems to me, probably aren’t really a reliable shadow of what will happen—if the forces of evil can keep the Saints from meeting, they can also shut off the internet.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Just_A_Guy said:

1.  I largely agree with your analysis of D&C 134.  Where we would disagree, is that you seem to suggest that D&C 134 abrogates—or at least, redefines--D&C 98.  I don’t think it does anything of the sort.

I disagree that my position would abrogate 98.  But I'll expound on that later.

1 hour ago, Just_A_Guy said:

D&C 134 was authored by Oliver Cowdery and presented to the Church in Kirtland while Joseph Smith was away in Michigan.  The body of the church adopted it, and JS ratified it on his return (along with an “article on marriage” that proscribed polygamy, which JS also ratified and which the Church de-canonized decades later).

So while D&C 134 represents a lot of good republican (small “r”) horse sense—even *inspired* horse sense—about how democratic republic should be run and a religious institution’s place within such a republic; I would reject the suggestion that it constitutes the verbatim text of a revelation from God that was calculated to redefine or re-interpret a previous revelation received by Smith himself.

I'm interpreting this as saying that 98 would abrogate 134? I think we would both agree that they would work together.  There should be a solution that satisfies both.

1 hour ago, Just_A_Guy said:

Are the factors in D&C 134 important?  Absolutely!  But they are built on an even more enduring foundation that the Lord had reiterated explicitly in D&C 98, and implicitly numerous times through the lessons of history of the Nephites and ancient Israel:  “When the wicked rule, the people mourn.”  (D&C 98:9)  *That* is the context of Section 98’s injunction, in the electoral context, that we seek honest, wise, and good men; and that we forsake all evil—and the Lord even warns us, right afterwards, that He will “try you and prove you herewith”.  I don’t know that I’d go so far as to assert that Trump represents that sort of divine trial and that a Latter-day Saint can only pass it by rejecting him—but it’s surely food for thought; and for what it’s worth, the Spirit has whispered that it *is* that sort of a trial for *me*.

I can give Trump props for what he has accomplished while still recognizing that his very situation is a result of our rejecting a divine Plan A.  David also deserved some praise for what he accomplished—but the fact is that if the people had listened to Samuel in the first place, David would never have been anything more than an obscure shepherd boy.

Consider that Section 98 was given because of religious persecution which was supported, encourage, and sometimes run by government officials.  This is the background of 98.  So, I'm still getting that the main focus of the "good, wise, and honest" descriptors are those who uphold their oath of office to defend the rights & freedoms of the citizens over which they govern.

"Honesty" was always about being a person who kept his word.  And the oath to God of upholding and defending the Constitution should be inviolate.  You'll never get that from any Democrat.  You'll get it from few Republicans.  Trump was an outlier that no one believed would uphold the Constitution.  But he has.

And, as a third party voter myself, I know and understand the rationale for "voting my conscience" against anyone "below a certain bar."  But at this point, I know that if we don't have a "less acceptable" person who will, nonetheless, defend religious freedom, we may not have religious freedom to remind us to worry about "virtue."

Consider OD #1.  Why was it instituted?  One practice, yes.  But we're at the precipice of those who govern having power to make any public profession of faith punishable by law.

I'd rather try to convince Noah to repent than to live under Lamanite rule.  And we could have avoided that because Trump wasn't paying attention to the big government priests of the Deep State.  Can you imagine what would have happened if Noah did NOT listen to his priests and simply repented at Abinadi's words (Mosiah 17:11-12)

Again, we're comparing kings to Presidents. Monarchy to Republic.  But given the level of power the government has over us, in the "freest of all nations", I don't see much of a difference on a practical level when we will basically be prevented from worshiping.  They'd prefer we conglomerate in casinos than at churches.  What better example can we have than to compare toe Noah's rule?

1 hour ago, Just_A_Guy said:

2.  I confess, I have no idea how a “gathering” would work in the context of the dissolution of the USA as we know it.  Prophecy says a lot of us—though not necessarily all—will be going to Missouri and building a physical city.  Current Church guidance—and prophecy (maybe?  I was pretty up on my LDS eschatology about 10-15 years ago; but I’ve forgotten a lot of it)—is that we build Zion in our own stakes; but I imagine that even some stakes will have to be evacuated (if only temporarily) in the coming chaos.  Even “virtual services”, it seems to me, probably aren’t really a reliable shadow of what will happen—if the forces of evil can keep the Saints from meeting, they can also shut off the internet.

I'm not aware that anything has changed in the past 10-15 years.  The last statements that have been made regarding a gathering was to dispel the idea that all the millions of Saints throughout the world must gather in Missouri.  Instead, we emphasize D&C 115:6. So, in essence, we've got nothing new on the gathering since 1838.

Zion and her stakes.  I'd say it also has to do with temples.  Stakes provide refuge from the storm.  But our worship is really in the Temple.  Both must be there for us or else we are incomplete.

I hereby make a prediction that upon Harris's inauguration, we'll see that the shut down restriction will continue for many Christian churches -- unless you happen to cater to politicians who even care about such things.  Whether that is because of disease or any other reason, I know not.  But we will have worsening religious freedoms under her presidency.

But if they bow down to the beast and accept the mark in head and hand by becoming "woke" then they can keep their churches open.

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On 11/11/2020 at 11:42 AM, Carborendum said:

[1] I disagree that my position would abrogate 98.  But I'll expound on that later.

[2] I'm interpreting this as saying that 98 would abrogate 134? I think we would both agree that they would work together.  There should be a solution that satisfies both.

[3] Consider that Section 98 was given because of religious persecution which was supported, encourage, and sometimes run by government officials.  This is the background of 98.  So, I'm still getting that the main focus of the "good, wise, and honest" descriptors are those who uphold their oath of office to defend the rights & freedoms of the citizens over which they govern.

"Honesty" was always about being a person who kept his word.  And the oath to God of upholding and defending the Constitution should be inviolate.  You'll never get that from any Democrat.  You'll get it from few Republicans.  Trump was an outlier that no one believed would uphold the Constitution.  But he has.

[4] And, as a third party voter myself, I know and understand the rationale for "voting my conscience" against anyone "below a certain bar."  But at this point, I know that if we don't have a "less acceptable" person who will, nonetheless, defend religious freedom, we may not have religious freedom to remind us to worry about "virtue."

Consider OD #1.  Why was it instituted?  One practice, yes.  But we're at the precipice of those who govern having power to make any public profession of faith punishable by law.

I'd rather try to convince Noah to repent than to live under Lamanite rule.  And we could have avoided that because Trump wasn't paying attention to the big government priests of the Deep State.  Can you imagine what would have happened if Noah did NOT listen to his priests and simply repented at Abinadi's words (Mosiah 17:11-12)

Again, we're comparing kings to Presidents. Monarchy to Republic.  But given the level of power the government has over us, in the "freest of all nations", I don't see much of a difference on a practical level when we will basically be prevented from worshiping.  They'd prefer we conglomerate in casinos than at churches.  What better example can we have than to compare toe Noah's rule?

[5] I'm not aware that anything has changed in the past 10-15 years.  The last statements that have been made regarding a gathering was to dispel the idea that all the millions of Saints throughout the world must gather in Missouri.  Instead, we emphasize D&C 115:6. So, in essence, we've got nothing new on the gathering since 1838.

Zion and her stakes.  I'd say it also has to do with temples.  Stakes provide refuge from the storm.  But our worship is really in the Temple.  Both must be there for us or else we are incomplete.

[6] I hereby make a prediction that upon Harris's inauguration, we'll see that the shut down restriction will continue for many Christian churches -- unless you happen to cater to politicians who even care about such things.  Whether that is because of disease or any other reason, I know not.  But we will have worsening religious freedoms under her presidency.

But if they bow down to the beast and accept the mark in head and hand by becoming "woke" then they can keep their churches open.

1.  OK, we’ll come back to that.  :-)

2.  No, I’m not saying either section abrogates the other.  I would agree that they should work together; we should synthesize them and form our conduct in a way that satisfies both sections.  134 tells us that we want our candidates to preserve individual liberties.  98 tells us that we want our candidates to also be individually righteous people.  We can no more support a righteous authoritarian, than a wicked constitutionalist. 

3.  I hope you’ll pardon me for suggesting that this attempt to re-define the terms “honest”, “wise”, and “good” and suggest that what they really mean is “dedication to preservation of constitutional/natural rights through political action”, comes off as rather artificial.  “Honest”, “wise”, and “good”, mean what they mean.  I wonder whether many of us would have allowed a Clinton supporter to hijack these terms to suggest that his support of RFRA in 1993 qualifies him as “honest, wise, and good” and deserving of our support under D&C 98:10? 

Moreover, the relevant verse in D&C 98 is prefaced with the statement that “when the wicked rule, the people mourn”—verbiage borrowed from Proverbs 29:2, and which in context clearly had nothing to do with the US constitution or any of the rights it purports to safeguard.  The verse is succeeded by the admonition that the Saints should “forsake all evil and cleave unto all good, that ye shall live by every word which proceedeth forth out of the mouth of God.  For he will give unto the faithful line upon line, precept upon precept; and I will try you and prove you herewith”—surely you aren’t suggesting that those verses mean that the sine qua non for passing whatever “test” God gives us, is merely that we embrace a conservative approach to Constitutional jurisprudence?  D&C 98:10, and it surrounding context, is a call to total individual and collective righteousness—and a call to expect those same standards from those we select to lead us. 

Your point that, given the sheer massiveness of our democracy, our individual political power is little better than if we were living under a monarchy; is a solid one.  But then—doesn’t that make it even more important that we channel what little influence we have towards the kingdom of God and His righteousness; rather than wasting our resources and undermining our own moral authority by supporting person like Trump?  How can we credibly denounce Biden as corrupt, a known liar, a cheat, a bully, and a sexual predator; when we tried our darnedest to prop up *another* politician who was corrupt, a known liar, a cheat, a bully, and a sexual predator?  How do we redeem democratic government (and the civil society on which such a government must be based) when we spent the last four years stating that we don’t give a flying flip if a politician lies to us, so long as *we* deem those lies to be inconsequential or in the service of a greater good? 

4.  It seems that the assumption that underlies this, is that we have no guarantee of a better and greater form of deliverance if we wait for divine aid and refuse to provide our support to wicked people in the interim.  I reject that assumption.  The scriptures tell of too many groups of people who obtained “impossible” divine deliverance from their enemies by looking to Him rather than propping up the nearest strongman—Zion under Enoch, Judah under Ahaz and Hezekiah, Israel under the Maccabees, the Nephites under Nephi and Mosiah and Moroni and Moronihah. 

And in the Americas we have a very particular promise in Either 2:12; and that promise is not conditioned on us voting for whatever slimeball happens to properly speak the right constitutional shibboleths.  The promise is conditioned on our serving Jesus Christ.  Jesus is not conservatism.  Conservatism is not Jesus.

5.  Agreed.  FWIW I don’t think I said “millions of Saints throughout must gather in Missouri”; only that a lot of Saints would be going there.  Admittedly, there could be some weaseling over the definition of “a lot”!  But the commission to build Zion in Jackson County has not been revoked.  It’s going to happen. 

I agree with you in principle about the importance of temple rites.  I don’t know that I’d agree that it’s the *temples* that are important, so much as the *authority* that is associated with those temples.  But I’m probably straining at gnats here—the Church is investing massively in its temples, and seems to anticipate remaining in possession of most of them for the next few decades at least. 

6.  Perhaps.  But I was told in very specific terms, back in 2016, that Trump would build a permanent conservative (well, right-ish populist) majority and that a Trump-stocked federal judiciary would keep me safe from the schemes of leftist moonbats.  Jesus, schmeezus—it was *Trump’s* power that would save me from the neo-Stalinists like Kamala Harris!

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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