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Grunt

Elder Holland at BYU

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35 minutes ago, Fether said:

n the US, we have a cultural hall that normally has a basketball hoop. If basketball went out of fashion and everyone like tennis, we could replace those basketball courts with tennis courts.

Did you see the video where two missionaries smoke a few guys playing basketball? I can’t post it here because the language is PG, but It’s a really cool video. 

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Just now, Grunt said:

Thanks.   It was the "middle ground" that hung me up, since middle ground to me implies compromise.  Compromise generally involves giving something up in the interest of amity or agreement.   I'm not disagreeing with your statement, but personally probably would have instead said something about prayerfully and carefully examining the doctrine to ensure the "line" is drawn in the right place.   

I suppose I only take notice and split hairs because this is a very serious issue for me personally.   I don't want to compromise on God's will.   However, we should make very certain we haven't accidentally excluded our brothers and sisters from all of Christ's earthly light due to cultural or misdrawn lines.

I'm not sure I made sense, so I'll try again if I haven't done well.

It's a very difficult subject, and I'm sure I'm off in my thinking in some ways. But it strikes me that a lot of "middle ground" is a good way to inadvertently increase the problems rather than help in the overall grand scheme of things. There's a simple principle of the gospel. You cannot stand with one foot in the kingdom of God and one foot in Babylon. You can't be lukewarm. No one who looks back is fit for the kingdom of God. Etc., etc.

To me these sorts of ideas make the response of the church via policy very difficult. It's a balance between allowing wheat and tares to grow together, lest you inadvertently destroy some of the wheat while trying to remove the tares, and setting standards that clearly dictate the need to get on board and commit and to get both feet out of Babylon. Middle ground policies, to my thinking, run the risk of teaching people that it's okay to fence sit. It's okay to dabble in Babylon. It's okay to let your minds and hearts be of the world, rather than just in the world.

Additionally, no one has ever been excluded from coming to Christ. Not by harsh policies. Not by His commandments. Not by temporal restrictions. None of those sorts of things have ever restricted anyone from humbling themselves and turning with full purpose to Christ. Every time there is a "middle ground" policy change to accommodate people under the idea that they are being excluded otherwise, a false principle is, perhaps, inadvertently being taught -- that you don't have to humble yourself and come to Christ with full purpose of heart. Just complain, rant, and rave enough and then the church will change to accommodate you. But that's not how Christ's gospel really works. He stands with open arms. But we must come to Him. We must knock. We must ask. We must humble ourselves. We must choose to obey. We must endue to the end.

So to me, when people are struggling to humble themselves and the church's response is, "Oh...you poor baby...let's change things then so you don't have to humble yourself" it doesn't strike me as necessarily a good thing.

But as I said, I'm sure I'm off in my thinking in some ways. And it's not my purview whatsoever. And I trust the leadership of the church to guide it by revelation. So...we'll see. It'll be interesting to see what they do with BYU and church guidelines moving forward.

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9 minutes ago, The Folk Prophet said:

It's a very difficult subject, and I'm sure I'm off in my thinking in some ways. But it strikes me that a lot of "middle ground" is a good way to inadvertently increase the problems rather than help in the overall grand scheme of things. There's a simple principle of the gospel. You cannot stand with one foot in the kingdom of God and one foot in Babylon. You can't be lukewarm. No one who looks back is fit for the kingdom of God. Etc., etc.

To me these sorts of ideas make the response of the church via policy very difficult. It's a balance between allowing wheat and tares to grow together, lest you inadvertently destroy some of the wheat while trying to remove the tares, and setting standards that clearly dictate the need to get on board and commit and to get both feet out of Babylon. Middle ground policies, to my thinking, run the risk of teaching people that it's okay to fence sit. It's okay to dabble in Babylon. It's okay to let your minds and hearts be of the world, rather than just in the world.

Additionally, no one has ever been excluded from coming to Christ. Not by harsh policies. Not by His commandments. Not by temporal restrictions. None of those sorts of things have ever restricted anyone from humbling themselves and turning with full purpose to Christ. Every time there is a "middle ground" policy change to accommodate people under the idea that they are being excluded otherwise, a false principle is, perhaps, inadvertently being taught -- that you don't have to humble yourself and come to Christ with full purpose of heart. Just complain, rant, and rave enough and then the church will change to accommodate you. But that's not how Christ's gospel really works. He stands with open arms. But we must come to Him. We must knock. We must ask. We must humble ourselves. We must choose to obey. We must endue to the end.

So to me, when people are struggling to humble themselves and the church's response is, "Oh...you poor baby...let's change things then so you don't have to humble yourself" it doesn't strike me as necessarily a good thing.

But as I said, I'm sure I'm off in my thinking in some ways. And it's not my purview whatsoever. And I trust the leadership of the church to guide it by revelation. So...we'll see. It'll be interesting to see what they do with BYU and church guidelines moving forward.

I agree 100%.  "Excluded" was probably the wrong word to use.   Maybe unintentionally making things more difficult?  

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44 minutes ago, Grunt said:

Thanks.   It was the "middle ground" that hung me up, since middle ground to me implies compromise.  Compromise generally involves giving something up in the interest of amity or agreement.   I'm not disagreeing with your statement, but personally probably would have instead said something about prayerfully and carefully examining the doctrine to ensure the "line" is drawn in the right place.   

I suppose I only take notice and split hairs because this is a very serious issue for me personally.   I don't want to compromise on God's will.   However, we should make very certain we haven't accidentally excluded our brothers and sisters from all of Christ's earthly light due to cultural or misdrawn lines.

I'm not sure I made sense, so I'll try again if I haven't done well.

I get it. It is why I used the phrase “doctrinal middle ground”. It stays doctrinal, but we offer changes that don’t compromise our beliefs

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28 minutes ago, LDSGator said:

Did you see the video where two missionaries smoke a few guys playing basketball? I can’t post it here because the language is PG, but It’s a really cool video. 

I have haha

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12 minutes ago, Grunt said:

 "Excluded" was probably the wrong word to use.   Maybe unintentionally making things more difficult?  

Maybe. But I appreciate it anyway because it was a springboard for further thought on it. I've been trying to think through my own feelings on the issues at BYU and in the church. It is, indeed, a difficult thing.

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So, I have a couple in my ward who are contemplating leaving the church over this speech by Elder Holland. They have some children active in the church, but also have multiple gay children that have distanced themselves, and want to show those ones that they love and support them, and feel that "leaving a church that is not supportive of the gay community" is one of the best ways to do that. What I find odd is that this particular speech really says nothing new...it has all been said before. I do think that there are more underlying issues in their marriage/family that haven't been revealed yet, but this speech is the reason they are giving.

They have both  been raised in the church, both served missions, both served in multiple leadership positions over the past 25 years, and have been married/sealed. They both state that they believe in the Lord, and that the church is true. However, they don't just want to be inactive and not contacted, but want to openly leave the church to make a statement to their kids and community. In my mind this makes no sense, and will do nothing but harm their family in the long-term. Leaving the church to "help" their children would cause them to forfeit the sealing that has taken place, along with all of the other covenant blessings they are currently entitled to. Far better I believe to stand faithful in their testimony of the Lord and be an example to their children, rather than be led along by them. I am meeting with them this Sunday with the Bishop and his other counselor to go over things, provide guidance, and hopefully convince them to not make such a hasty and rash decision.

Any thoughts or counsel?

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1 hour ago, scottyg said:

So, I have a couple in my ward who are contemplating leaving the church over this speech by Elder Holland. They have some children active in the church, but also have multiple gay children that have distanced themselves, and want to show those ones that they love and support them, and feel that "leaving a church that is not supportive of the gay community" is one of the best ways to do that. What I find odd is that this particular speech really says nothing new...it has all been said before. I do think that there are more underlying issues in their marriage/family that haven't been revealed yet, but this speech is the reason they are giving.

They have both  been raised in the church, both served missions, both served in multiple leadership positions over the past 25 years, and have been married/sealed. They both state that they believe in the Lord, and that the church is true. However, they don't just want to be inactive and not contacted, but want to openly leave the church to make a statement to their kids and community. In my mind this makes no sense, and will do nothing but harm their family in the long-term. Leaving the church to "help" their children would cause them to forfeit the sealing that has taken place, along with all of the other covenant blessings they are currently entitled to. Far better I believe to stand faithful in their testimony of the Lord and be an example to their children, rather than be led along by them. I am meeting with them this Sunday with the Bishop and his other counselor to go over things, provide guidance, and hopefully convince them to not make such a hasty and rash decision.

Any thoughts or counsel?

I have 3 siblings. One dead their name removed, one is trans, and the other gay. My parents and I are all extremely faithful. Family gatherings are incredible, I can definitively say that I feel most happy when I am with my siblings and we are just goofing off. We all have different views on life, and we disagree on a lot of things, but there is no animosity at all.

Though we have talked about it, I have not once felt that my siblings want me to leave the church in some show of acceptance. Nor have I ever felt that leaving the church would provide that “acceptance”.

I accept them by the way I treat them and the interest I show in their lives. I find that leaving the church for them would only cause them to see me as a push over, someone who doesn’t stand by what they believe. 
 

It seems, from my view at least, that they value family relations over the church. This may come from never being truly converted to the church. I can quote the scriptures that state that we should always pick God over family… but those seem to have become zealot platitudes by most the world. 
 

Now… as for applicable advice. Their biggest concern is Keri g a good relationship with their children. I would focus the entire conversation on that. Do not address the “leaving the church” bit until you fully understand how they feel, and more importantly, they can feel that you understand how they feel. Try to offer counsel on how to build that relationship. Perhaps find others in the ward or drake who are in similar situations and connect with them. If I were there, I would love to be a resource to show how you can have both the church and family:


When you do start address the issue of leaving the church, my approach would be to just ask what they believe and value. If someone can verbally acknowledge that they are just scared to lose their kids, value familial relationship over God, or they don’t believe the church is true, that may make or break the whole situation. A lot of times we don’t want to acknowledge something we think because it is too hard to rationalize or we dont want to deal with the domino affect, so instead we act without acknowledging. Once that conversation is done, I would ask point blank “do you want to leave the church?”

Now you know their familial situation, what thought process took them to decide to leave the church, and whether they want to leave the church or not. From there you can do a lot of good

Edited by Fether

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31 minutes ago, Fether said:

have 3 siblings. One dead their name removed, one is trans, and the other gay. My parents and I are all extremely faithful. Family gatherings are incredible, I can definitively say that I feel most happy when I am with my siblings and we are just goofing off. We all have different views on life, and we disagree on a lot of things, but there is no animosity at all.

Though we have talked about it, I have not once felt that my siblings want me to leave the church in some show of acceptance. Nor have I ever felt that leaving the church would provide that “acceptance”.

That’s awesome bro. 

I think it’s fairly obvious that most families put unity in front of differences, even  big differences. 
 

Sometimes it’s best to just live your life and accept the reality that humans are diverse with different outlooks on life. You walk your walk, I’ll walk mine. 

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1 hour ago, scottyg said:

So, I have a couple in my ward who are contemplating leaving the church over this speech by Elder Holland.

Any thoughts or counsel?

Figure out how God loves them, and do your absolute level best to love them the same way.

 

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1 hour ago, scottyg said:

So, I have a couple in my ward who are contemplating leaving the church over this speech by Elder Holland. They have some children active in the church, but also have multiple gay children that have distanced themselves, and want to show those ones that they love and support them, and feel that "leaving a church that is not supportive of the gay community" is one of the best ways to do that. What I find odd is that this particular speech really says nothing new...it has all been said before. I do think that there are more underlying issues in their marriage/family that haven't been revealed yet, but this speech is the reason they are giving.

They have both  been raised in the church, both served missions, both served in multiple leadership positions over the past 25 years, and have been married/sealed. They both state that they believe in the Lord, and that the church is true. However, they don't just want to be inactive and not contacted, but want to openly leave the church to make a statement to their kids and community. In my mind this makes no sense, and will do nothing but harm their family in the long-term. Leaving the church to "help" their children would cause them to forfeit the sealing that has taken place, along with all of the other covenant blessings they are currently entitled to. Far better I believe to stand faithful in their testimony of the Lord and be an example to their children, rather than be led along by them. I am meeting with them this Sunday with the Bishop and his other counselor to go over things, provide guidance, and hopefully convince them to not make such a hasty and rash decision.

Any thoughts or counsel?

My thoughts, as each situation is different...

Express love for them and listen carefully to what they say.  Listen to the spirit and heed what it has to say.  Let the Spirit guide you.

In many instances by the time someone has come to the Bishopric on an issue they have already made up their mind on what they are going to do.  There can be very little that can be done to change it.  Sometimes the spirit has solutions that the Bishop or Counselors would not think of but are what is needed at the time.  It may not be what we expect, or it may align with what we thought to do all along.

The biggest thing I think is to express love for the people and interest in them and their lives, then let the spirit guide your actions.

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1 hour ago, Fether said:

When you do start address the issue of leaving the church, my approach would be to just ask what they believe and value. If someone can verbally acknowledge that they are just scared to lose their kids,

I think the wife in particular is currently in "mama bear" mode. She just wants to help her kids as best she can, and feels hurt that they are hurting. It wouldn't surprise me to learn of mental health issues and or suicidal thoughts on the part of her kids. Because of her aggressive drive to try and remove some of that pain and "preserve" her family, she isn't thinking about the real consequences right now...

Your other remarks were helpful, and give me a bit more insight on how to counsel my Bishop. Thank you.

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50 minutes ago, scottyg said:

I think the wife in particular is currently in "mama bear" mode. She just wants to help her kids as best she can, and feels hurt that they are hurting. It wouldn't surprise me to learn of mental health issues and or suicidal thoughts on the part of her kids. Because of her aggressive drive to try and remove some of that pain and "preserve" her family, she isn't thinking about the real consequences right now...

Your other remarks were helpful, and give me a bit more insight on how to counsel my Bishop. Thank you.

I think that @JohnsonJones's remarks are spot on.  If I was to add anything - it is my opinion that other than showing love, compassion and concern - as spotlighted by @JohnsonJones and others that it is the solemn duty of those that take a testimony of the restoration to the world that they testify of things that are true (not personal opinion).  I am somewhat conflicted  because I am not always sure of a clear distinction between my personal opinion and the light and truth of the restoration.

Many decades ago, as a missionary, my missionary president taught me to call the righteous to repentance and to warn the wicked - that wickedness is never happiness.   One purpose of the restoration is to return the hearts of the children to their fathers and the hearts of the fathers to their children - to seal and keep families together not just here on earth but in eternity.

 

The Traveler

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1 hour ago, Traveler said:

I think that @JohnsonJones's remarks are spot on.  If I was to add anything - it is my opinion that other than showing love, compassion and concern - as spotlighted by @JohnsonJones and others that it is the solemn duty of those that take a testimony of the restoration to the world that they testify of things that are true (not personal opinion).  I am somewhat conflicted  because I am not always sure of a clear distinction between my personal opinion and the light and truth of the restoration.

Many decades ago, as a missionary, my missionary president taught me to call the righteous to repentance and to warn the wicked - that wickedness is never happiness.   One purpose of the restoration is to return the hearts of the children to their fathers and the hearts of the fathers to their children - to seal and keep families together not just here on earth but in eternity.

 

The Traveler

@Traveler, this question is for you, but also for anyone else, I guess. It’s important to call out the “wicked”, I get that. But, unless you show interest in their lives outside of what you view as “wicked” behavior (and, to be clear their behavior might very well be wrong) how influential will you be? 

Most of us won’t listen to the guy/girl who just lectures us, shows disapproval and has nothing positive to say. That’s why relationships are so important in the church. 

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3 minutes ago, LDSGator said:

@Traveler, this question is for you, but also for anyone else, I guess. It’s important to call out the “wicked”, I get that. But, unless you show interest in their lives outside of what you view as “wicked” behavior (and, to be clear their behavior might very well be wrong) how influential will you be? 

Most of us won’t listen to the guy/girl who just lectures us, shows disapproval and has nothing positive to say. That’s why relationships are so important in the church. 

I believe the answer is in part - understanding the difference between the righteous and the wicked.  We tend to think righteousness is always doing the good and right thing and that wickedness is someone doing lots of bad and evil things.  Anciently what defined the righteous was those willing to covenant with G-d.  Wickedness was the opposite - someone that refuses to covenant with G-d.

The call to repentance is a call to covenant with G-d and remain loyal to one's covenant with G-d.  The warning to the wicked is a warning to refuse to covenant with G-d (defined in scripture as being stiff nicked) or break our covenants with G-d.  We can love our children and remain loyal to our covenants with G-d - neither of which has anything to do with how others are choosing to live their lives.  We must all learn to love those with whom we disagree - which is included in our covenant of baptism.

We all have sinned and have need of repentance.  But what seems to show the most in disagreements is the temptation of hate that is a flame lit from the spark  and tinder of anger.  If we cannot discuss a topic with someone that disagrees with us because we become angry - the problem is not them but it is our inability to keep our covenant.  There is no intelligent reason to attempt to convince someone to do something other than that which they have determined they choose to do.   It is more evil before G-d to desire to deprive someone of their choice (agency).  And it is clearly good to express our sorrow of poor choices but at the same time make it clear that we so love that we will die (give our life) that others may choose according to their agency.  It is important that we not separate ourselves from others because of their agency - not because someday they may change but because of all things - Agency - is the greatest and most protected diving gift.

 

The Traveler

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10 minutes ago, Traveler said:

believe the answer is in part - understanding the difference between the righteous and the wicked

Perhaps. I think the answer is a bit more harsh. We love pointing out flaws in others because it makes us feel better about our own. That, and some people just enjoy preaching to others. They like viewing themselves as crusaders, etc. 

To be clear, no, not everyone who tries to correct other members is like this. But it’s very naive to think that there isn’t some other motive when others break into “admonish the sinner” mode. 

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7 hours ago, scottyg said:

So, I have a couple in my ward who are contemplating leaving the church over this speech by Elder Holland. They have some children active in the church, but also have multiple gay children that have distanced themselves, and want to show those ones that they love and support them, and feel that "leaving a church that is not supportive of the gay community" is one of the best ways to do that. What I find odd is that this particular speech really says nothing new...it has all been said before. I do think that there are more underlying issues in their marriage/family that haven't been revealed yet, but this speech is the reason they are giving.

They have both  been raised in the church, both served missions, both served in multiple leadership positions over the past 25 years, and have been married/sealed. They both state that they believe in the Lord, and that the church is true. However, they don't just want to be inactive and not contacted, but want to openly leave the church to make a statement to their kids and community. In my mind this makes no sense, and will do nothing but harm their family in the long-term. Leaving the church to "help" their children would cause them to forfeit the sealing that has taken place, along with all of the other covenant blessings they are currently entitled to. Far better I believe to stand faithful in their testimony of the Lord and be an example to their children, rather than be led along by them. I am meeting with them this Sunday with the Bishop and his other counselor to go over things, provide guidance, and hopefully convince them to not make such a hasty and rash decision.

Any thoughts or counsel?

So they want to protest Christ?  Good luck.

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On 11/10/2021 at 1:11 PM, LDSGator said:

Perhaps. I think the answer is a bit more harsh. We love pointing out flaws in others because it makes us feel better about our own. That, and some people just enjoy preaching to others. They like viewing themselves as crusaders, etc. 

To be clear, no, not everyone who tries to correct other members is like this. But it’s very naive to think that there isn’t some other motive when others break into “admonish the sinner” mode. 

You are so right about so many things - but also remember that it is quite likely that the flaws seen in others are so known because we are more familiar of them with in ourselves.  Also repentance is not always so much about "Sin" as it is to remember and renew our covenants with an eye single in Christ or perhaps better understood as "The Spirit of Christ".   Thus the greatest call to repentance or admonishment to the sinner are not words so much as example.  In other words I am the best example of my opinions.

 

The Traveler

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38 minutes ago, Traveler said:

You are so right about so many things

Thanks bud! 

 

38 minutes ago, Traveler said:

ings - but also remember that it is quite likely that the flaws seen in others are so known because we are more familiar of them with in ourselves. 

I’ve heard this before and while I don’t really disagree, it’s misunderstood. If you (generic, not @Traveler) see envy in others, it doesn't always mean you are filled with dangerous levels of envy. In reality, everyone has moments of envy. If you see hate in others, it doesn't always mean you are a hate filled criminal. Again, everyone has moments of hate/anger. So you aren’t wrong, but it’s sort of complicated. After all, all of us are human. 
 

38 minutes ago, Traveler said:

repentance is not always so much about "Sin" as it is to remember and renew our covenants with an eye single in Christ or perhaps better understood as "The Spirit of Christ".   Thus the greatest call to repentance or admonishment to the sinner are not words so much as example

Yes, agree fully. How you act will always be a better indicator of who you are then just your words. 
 

Edited by LDSGator

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6 hours ago, Traveler said:

You are so right about so many things - but also remember that it is quite likely that the flaws seen in others are so known because we are more familiar of them with in ourselves.  Also repentance is not always so much about "Sin" as it is to remember and renew our covenants with an eye single in Christ or perhaps better understood as "The Spirit of Christ".   Thus the greatest call to repentance or admonishment to the sinner are not words so much as example.  In other words I am the best example of my opinions.

 

The Traveler

I don't believe there are many times when it is right to "call someone to repentance".   I think, as you say, your example is a reminder to others.  However, as I said in an earlier now-deleted post that I believe was misunderstood, I believe it's instructional to others to at times point out sin.   For example, if you (generic, not specifically you) are public that you are a Saint, call yourself a Saint, but are in bars or posting pictures on Social media drinking coffee, beer, or otherwise not following your covenants it's not my place to say anything to you (again, not you specifically) but you're sending a mixed message to others who aren't familiar with our covenants, children, etc.   I think it is absolutely appropriate to explain to my children, or others in normal conversation, what our covenants actually say and let them draw their own conclusions.   

Therefore, I believe that calling others to repentance is inappropriate except in limited circumstances but naming sin in education (not in gossip) is not.

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12 minutes ago, Grunt said:

I don't believe there are many times when it is right to "call someone to repentance".   I think, as you say, your example is a reminder to others.  However, as I said in an earlier now-deleted post that I believe was misunderstood, I believe it's instructional to others to at times point out sin.   For example, if you (generic, not specifically you) are public that you are a Saint, call yourself a Saint, but are in bars or posting pictures on Social media drinking coffee, beer, or otherwise not following your covenants it's not my place to say anything to you (again, not you specifically) but you're sending a mixed message to others who aren't familiar with our covenants, children, etc.   I think it is absolutely appropriate to explain to my children, or others in normal conversation, what our covenants actually say and let them draw their own conclusions.   

Therefore, I believe that calling others to repentance is inappropriate except in limited circumstances but naming sin in education (not in gossip) is not.

Thanks for your response.  What do you think of the scripture in D&C 11:9

Quote

9 Say nothing but repentance unto this generation. Keep my commandments, and assist to bring forth my work, according to my commandments, and you shall be blessed.

If you bring up the scriptures at the Church website and do a search on repentance - you will find that this concept is repeated many time.  If fact it would seem that we are commanded to preach repentance as we are to preach the gospel - in essence that the gospel of Christ cannot be taught without preaching repentance.  In the 4th article of faith repentance is listed as the second element of the gospel - next to faith in Jesus Christ.

I believe that many attach a negative connotation to repentance and assume that we only need to repent if we have sinned.  I see repentance is the way and method of becoming more Christ like.  Therefor the first call and first teaching of repentance is to ourselves. 

 

The Traveler

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8 minutes ago, Traveler said:

Thanks for your response.  What do you think of the scripture in D&C 11:9

If you bring up the scriptures at the Church website and do a search on repentance - you will find that this concept is repeated many time.  If fact it would seem that we are commanded to preach repentance as we are to preach the gospel - in essence that the gospel of Christ cannot be taught without preaching repentance.  In the 4th article of faith repentance is listed as the second element of the gospel - next to faith in Jesus Christ.

I believe that many attach a negative connotation to repentance and assume that we only need to repent if we have sinned.  I see repentance is the way and method of becoming more Christ like.  Therefor the first call and first teaching of repentance is to ourselves. 

 

The Traveler

This is my knee-jerk response, so I reserve the right to change my mind after pondering, praying, studying, and reading the insightful replies here.  Fair?

I think there is a difference between preaching repentance and calling to repentance.  Preaching repentance is person-generic.   You can even preach repentance for specific sins.   Calling to repentance is person-specific:  Traveler, you should repent of <this> sin.   I'm comfortable preaching repentance, because it is a beautiful gift I partake of daily.   I'm uncomfortable calling you to repentance when I have sins of my own.  The exception being if your sin is directed at me.

Edited by Grunt

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8 hours ago, Grunt said:

This is my knee-jerk response, so I reserve the right to change my mind after pondering, praying, studying, and reading the insightful replies here.  Fair?

I think there is a difference between preaching repentance and calling to repentance.  Preaching repentance is person-generic.   You can even preach repentance for specific sins.   Calling to repentance is person-specific:  Traveler, you should repent of <this> sin.   I'm comfortable preaching repentance, because it is a beautiful gift I partake of daily.   I'm uncomfortable calling you to repentance when I have sins of my own.  The exception being if your sin is directed at me.

There are many interesting words in scripture that are somewhat synonymous.  Terms like perfect, whole, holy, sacred, born again and one with G-d or one with the Saints all point to the same thing.  I would also add repentant.  Within the calling of the church there are some that are called to judge.  Among those called to judge are Apostles and Bishops.  I agree that few are called to judge and I am impressed that is what you are thinking as the call to repentance.

Perhaps I can provide an example.  When I was young and in grade school I began to learn mathematics.  I learned for example that 2 + 2 = 4.  I soon excelled in math thinking I knew lots of answers.  I majored in mathematics in college and took a class in number theory.  I learned that there are different number systems and each number system had it's own set of rules.  I learned that the integer number system is in many ways much like the real number system but with some differences.  Eventually I studied the theory of complex numbers.  In the complex plane 2 + 2 is not always 4 but is more correctly understood as 2 <= 2 + 2  >= 4.  

Progressing in number theory required that I repent of old ideas and accept greater truths.

Also while I was in college I competed in the giant slalom and had the opportunity to be coached.   Regardless of how well I did in practice or in any race my coach always preached to me about my mistakes. This also is a type or shadow of a call to repentance by which I became much better in my competitions.  

I believe that if a speaker at church is speaking on the subject of keeping the Sabbath holy that there will be a call to repentance to all those that listen through the holy spirit. 

For myself I cannot study scripture without feeling that I should and must repent.  I also have this same experience when I pray.

I have also learned that if I become angry when encouraged to repent weather call be true or false - it is never because I am being inspired by the Holy Spirit but rather tempted by an evil spirit.  And I find that whenever I become angry I must repent before I can enjoy the light of the Holy Spirit.   Perhaps this has been my most difficult lesson the primary reason that I become distant to those I love, trust and respect most.  I do not think I can feel the spirit without feeling that I must repent.

I use to think it would be wonderful to have an angel appear to me and teach me great and somewhat hidden truths.  But I have come to realize that the primary reason for an angel to come to me would be to call me to repentance.  Like my ski coach there would be no reason to congratulate me and nothing else.  Being called to repentance is a blessing.  It is never a curse that will bring us destruction to heed such a call - unless we are stiff nicked as described in scripture. 

 

The Traveler

Edited by Traveler

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@Grunt I want to thank you for your exceptional kindness during our discussion.  However, I realized that there is a possible error in my previous post in the use of the term "judge".  I think there is a better term that we all need to understand better and I believe it is spot on concerning your focus in this discussion.  First off - I do not think we can survive much in our mortal probation without making judgments.  I am thinking that the term "condemn" is be best term to be used to describe the one thing we should not do in dealing with others.

This is the one aspect of dealing with other that is the most difficult for me.  For example; if anyone ever lights up a cigarette (or vaping pipe) not only do I wish them or me to be somewhere else but I also think that that likely are trying to exist with a single digit IQ.   I think that there are fewer ways to convince the world one is stupid.  I also have great difficulty hiding what I am thinking.  My wife says I have no filters and often pokes me (sometimes not so gently) to remind me not to be so judgmental or when I am to not be so obvious about it.

Honestly I have yet to learn how to be loving and kind towards those that are obviously making poor or irrational choices - especially if it has a negative impact on me.

 

The Traveler

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