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The strait and narrow path to eternal life has a gate. The scriptures attest that anyone who wishes to be found on that path must enter through this gate, which is “repentance and baptism by water; then cometh a remission of your sins by fire and by the Holy Ghost.”

Nephi asks the question: …after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? He answers his own question with the following found in 2 Nephi, chapter 31.

19  Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.

20  Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men.  Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

As we journey on this strait and narrow path, we are told that we must feast upon the words of Christ and endure to the end, after which we are promised we shall have eternal life.

In the next chapter, Nephi continues to provide additional information until the spirit stops him. Where do we find the words of Christ?

2  Do ye not remember that I said unto you that after ye had received the Holy Ghost ye could speak with the tongue of angels?  And now, how could ye speak with the tongue of angels save it were by the Holy Ghost?

3  Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ.  Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.

What a tremendous promise, after receiving the baptism of fire, we can speak with the tongue of angels. I believe this could mean that, after our entry onto the strait and narrow way, we are able to understand the language of the heavenly beings. The Holy Ghost has given us the power to communicate with angels. These same heavenly beings are able to provide us with the words of Christ. It is this personal revelation that will service as our personal ‘iron rod.’ leading us to our goal.

As stated above, one must have unshaken faith in Christ; one must press forward; one must endure to the end.

As I read and reread these words, my thoughts were redirected to the definition of the gospel of Jesus Christ found in 3 Nephi, chapter 27:

16  And it shall come to pass, that whoso repenteth and is baptized in my name shall be filled; and if he endureth to the end, behold, him will I hold guiltless before my Father at that day when I shall stand to judge the world.

17  And he that endureth not unto the end, the same is he that is also hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence they can no more return, because of the justice of the Father.

18  And this is the word which he hath given unto the children of men.  And for this cause he fulfilleth the words which he hath given, and he lieth not, but fulfilleth all his words.

19  And no unclean thing can enter into his kingdom; therefore nothing entereth into his rest save it be those who have washed their garments in my blood, because of their faith, and the repentance of all their sins, and their faithfulness unto the end.

20  Now this is the commandment: Repent, all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and be baptized in my name, that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day.

21  Verily, verily, I say unto you, this is my gospel; and ye know the things that ye must do in my church; for the works which ye have seen me do that shall ye also do; for that which ye have seen me do even that shall ye do;

22  Therefore, if ye do these things blessed are ye, for ye shall be lifted up at the last day.

In verse 16, Christ tells us that if we repent and are baptized, we shall be filled. I believe this is the reference to the baptism of fire that should be our first goal. Following reception of the Holy Ghost, when we are filled, we must now endure to the end; the message is consistent with what was described in the doctrine of Christ as expounded by Nephi.

What is at the ‘end?’ What is it that greets us if we endure? The fruits of this endurance, according to the gospel defined by Christ, is that we will be found guiltless at the last day. We are told that no unclean thing can be found in His kingdom. The only way to enter is to have our garments washed by the blood of Christ. The prize at the end of this path is sanctification.  We are sanctified by the Holy Ghost in order to be without sin. We have the atonement applied to our garments and are pronounced holy and without spot.

In Moses, chapter 6, we are told what we should be teaching our children:

58  Therefore I give unto you a commandment, to teach these things freely unto your children, saying:

59  That by reason of transgression cometh the fall, which fall bringeth death, and inasmuch as ye were born into the world by water, and blood, and the spirit, which I have made, and so became of dust a living soul, even so ye must be born again into the kingdom of heaven, of water, and of the Spirit, and be cleansed by blood, even the blood of mine Only Begotten; that ye might be sanctified from all sin, and enjoy the words of eternal life in this world, and eternal life in the world to come, even immortal glory;

60  For by the water ye keep the commandment; by the Spirit ye are justified, and by the blood ye are sanctified;

Before we can teach, we must learn for ourselves. We must be baptized of water, we must born again of the spirit, and finally we must  endure to the end and be cleansed by the blood of Christ.

Two gates are portrayed in this gospel, the first gate is the baptism of fire – justification, the second gate is the washing in the blood of Christ – sanctification.

But…. when is the end? Is it the end of our lives? Or is it when we have reached the point where we are fully immersed in the gospel? Is it when we have reached that point, because of our steadfast faith, where the Lord can say to us, as He did to Abraham in Genesis 18:19

For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment.

In Alma, chapter 13, we can read of men who were ordained to the priesthood.

8  Now they were ordained after this manner—being called with a holy calling, and ordained with a holy ordinance, and taking upon them the high priesthood of the holy order, which calling, and ordinance, and high priesthood, is without beginning or end—

9  Thus they become high priests forever, after the order of the Son, the Only Begotten of the Father, who is without beginning of days or end of years, who is full of grace, equity, and truth.  And thus it is.  Amen.

10  Now, as I said concerning the holy order, or this high priesthood, there were many who were ordained and became high priests of God; and it was on account of their exceeding faith and repentance, and their righteousness before God, they choosing to repent and work righteousness rather than to perish;

11  Therefore they were called after this holy order, and were sanctified, and their garments were washed white through the blood of the Lamb.

12  Now they, after being sanctified by the Holy Ghost, having their garments made white, being pure and spotless before God, could not look upon sin save it were with abhorrence; and there were many, exceedingly great many, who were made pure and entered into the rest of the Lord their God.

13  And now, my brethren, I would that ye should humble yourselves before God, and bring forth fruit meet for repentance, that ye may also enter into that rest.

These men were ordained high priests because of their exceeding faith and repentance. They were called and sanctified. Their garments were washed in the blood of Christ and were allowed to enter the ‘rest’ of God.

These men were not ordained as they passed from this life, rather they were ordained and received this sanctification in order to teach others how it must be done.

6  And thus being called by this holy calling, and ordained unto the high priesthood of the holy order of God, to teach his commandments unto the children of men, that they also might enter into his rest—

We are told here in this chapter that there were an ‘exceedingly great many’ who were offered this great privilege.

What is it that restrains us in this day? Where are these high priests who have been sanctified and are tasked with teaching us how we can also enjoy the rest of God and how we can have our garments ‘washed white through the blood of the Lamb?

Why are these words not taught to the people who call themselves saints?

Or was it taught but has been lost? I would posit that this ‘sanctification’ is also known by other names including having one’s ‘calling and election’ made sure.

In summary, the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost is the gate by which we enter the strait and narrow path. This path allows us to open communications with the angels and, through steadfast faith and enduring to the end, we will be sanctified through the atonement of Christ. When we receive this second blessing, we are to teach others how to navigate to the rest of God.

What think ye?

175 Responses to “That Ye May Be Sanctified”

  • JR:

    Spek,
    I hope I may be forgiven for my enthusiasm for what you are leading here!
    I have never seen discussions of this magnitude and importance. A sign of the time we live in?

    This blog of late reminds me of the people in Bountiful at the time of the Lord’s appearance to them. Moroni wrote of them, “And the church did meet together oft, to fast and to pray, and to speak one with another concerning the welfare of their souls.
    And they did meet together oft to partake of bread and wine, in remembrance of the Lord Jesus.” (Moroni 6:5-6)

    If only we could take the bread and wine together!
    Thank you.
    JR

  • Log:

    The baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost, wherein we receive the Holy Ghost, is also wherein we are sanctified through the blood of Christ.

    3 Nephi 27:20

    20 Now this is the commandment: Repent, all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and be baptized in my name, that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day.

    Justified, as used in Moses 6, means to be born again (quickened, or made alive, in the inner man); sanctified means to be cleansed by fire.

    Moses 6:65

    65 And thus he was baptized, and the Spirit of God descended upon him, and thus he was born of the Spirit, and became quickened in the inner man.

    66 And he heard a voice out of heaven, saying: Thou art baptized with fire, and with the Holy Ghost. This is the record of the Father, and the Son, from henceforth and forever;

    67 And thou art after the order of him who was without beginning of days or end of years, from all eternity to all eternity.

    68 Behold, thou art one in me, a son of God; and thus may all become my sons. Amen.

    I have touched on these themes in many of the posts on my blog.

  • JR:

    Log,
    “that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day”

    Could this statement mean one is sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost (BoF), which then puts one into the straight and narrow, and then sanctification proceeds as the person makes his/her way thru the process called the “straight and narrow” path over some period of time, to become spotless at the last day?

    Isn’t Justification by the Spirit, while Sanctification is by the blood?
    JR

  • Spektator:

    I believe there is a subtle yet defined between having your sins remitted as expressed by the baptism of fire and having your sins washed away. Just as with cancer, one can go into remission but the disease may come back. Sanctification is the state of those sins removed permanently, I would suppose. If it is anything like the experience of BoF… I can only hope to prepare myself for an awesome event.

  • Log:

    A suggestion: look up every instance of the word “sanctified” or “sanctify” in the scriptures. Know also that the word “saint” means “sanctified one”, or “holy one”.

  • Log:

    And also remember, since to be sanctified means to be holy, that the Holy Ghost dwelleth not in unholy temples.

  • QB:

    sanctification another of the many synonyms for BOF. Why so many synonyms? because of the constraints of language.

    What is the end? a phrase for “endure to the end” will provide a plethora of results wherein the answer is provided such as the phrase is always associated with the following or the negative of the list below
    -will be saved
    -I will give eternal life
    - which is eternal life
    - they shall be lifted up at the last day
    - will receive a crown of eternal life.
    in summary the END is not when we die,if we wait till we die its too late, now is the time to prepare to:-
    - to awake out of sleep
    - For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God
    - this life became a probationary state; a time to prepare to meet God

    the end is your receipt of your calling and election as is indicated in the bullet-points above

    Important note be careful not to conflate exaltation with perfection, is another synonym for the BOF they are not the same thing… not by a long shot, it is this point that confused me for a long time for when I obtained my C&E I was/AM no example I will post my journal entry of that occasion at a later time.. from my experience I know three things 1. how merciful our Gods are, 2.how well they know us and most importantly 3. how well we know them. When the veil is removed or rather when you pass through the veil in Their presence You will not be prepared for how intimately you know them and how comfortable you will feel in Their presence. Their love is truly unconditional, we are the one with the conditions we are even so stupid (speaking for myself) as to place condition upon our Gods, this is why I crack up (laugh) so much because of how we enjoy punishing ourselves convincing ourselves that we are unworthy of course we are, but when it becomes a stumbling block in our approaching God it become not a saintly attribute but a prideful and totally satanic attribute.. God is about Love nd its about time we take him at his word ;)

  • Log:

    QB,

    I would welcome comments on the content of my blog: crymightily.blogspot.com

  • Spektator:

    QB,
    You state that sanctification and BoF are one item. That is where I was for a long time but as I read and studied the doctrine and gospel of Christ, I do perceive a difference. If I read 2 Nephi 31, the BoF is the gate. Once we are on the strait and narrow path, we must move forward with a steadfastness of faith in Christ and endure to the end. At that time, we are granted eternal life.

    When I read how Christ defined his gospel, I see that we are filled with the Holy Ghost and are exhorted to endure to the end (3 Nephi 27:16). Then we are told that one must show forth faith, repentance, and endure to the end to have our garments washed in the blood of Christ (3 Nephi 27:19).

    That is why I perceive there is the initial BoF, after which we are to endure to the end where we are purified by the blood of Christ – sanctification which is what you refer to as the calling and election.

    In Alma 13, we read of men that were sanctified and had their ‘garments washed white though the blood of the Lamb.’ That clearly lines up with the sequence illustrated above in 3 Nephi, chapter 27.

    Sorry for repeating essentially what I had posted earlier, but I am again trying to work this out in my head and heart.

    Do you agree that the high priests discussed in Alma 13 received their calling and election? Or did they receive their BoF at that time? Does this mean you hold the Bof nnd sanctification as equivalent with the end signified by the C and E. I am grappling with how the scriptures, including those cited above, line up with that idea.

    • QB:

      If we make sanctification to mean purify then we are back to he perfection process. Every temple ordinance is a type of something real or a mystery of godliness hence in Denvers’ world ordinance is synonymous with Invitation. baptism being a type and invitation for the Baptism of Fireand the washing and anointing being a type and invitation for sanctification, the endowment being a type and invitation for the Calling and Election, I now await the “fulness of the priesthood”,for which our priesthood ordinations were a type.
      http://www.heavenlyascents.com/2009/11/07/professor-john-f-hall-notes-from-the-temple-studies-symposium-iii/ notes from John Halls Temples Symposium regarding annointing and sanctification the ultimate aim being to achieve godhood,Note the implication is that it is all done pre-death resurrection and at-one-ment. The course toward C&E is going to totally and utterly mess your world up but that’s OK it will be worth it! For the certainty and fearlessness which accompanies these great events the weight of the knowledge that comes is significant, I keep waiting for my head to explode. In the words of a friend of mine you can look at a door all day and unless it is pointed out it just looks like part of the wall.

      • Log:

        QB, a question: what the difference in your heart since you have received your calling and election, compared with what was in your heart after you were baptized with fire?

  • Log:

    3 Nephi 27:19 And no unclean thing can enter into his kingdom; therefore nothing entereth into his rest save it be those who have washed their garments in my blood, because of their faith, and the repentance of all their sins, and their faithfulness unto the end.

    Those who enter into the rest of the Lord are those who
    1. wash their garments in the blood of Christ by
    a. their faith and
    b. their repentance of all your sins.
    2. endure in faithfulness unto the end.

    This is in opposition to them who wash their garments in the blood of Christ and afterward fall away, or them who fail to wash their garments in the blood of Christ at all.

    This is consistent with the verse whose picture garnishes the top of this blog:

    3 Nephi 27:20
    20 Now this is the commandment: Repent, all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and be baptized in my name, that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day.

    Receiving the Holy Ghost through the baptism by fire is wherein we are born again and sanctified through the blood of Christ.

  • QB:

    Log, a question: what the difference in your heart since you have received your calling and election, compared with what was in your heart after you were baptized with fire? After the BOF my heart was overwhelmed by a total unrestrained love coming from the outside in and through me which was nature changing. After the C&E same love but this time from inside flowing out… BOF = Mercy I was the recipient(originating outside flowing in) C&E = Mercy toward others (Originating inside flowing out D&C121:46

  • Log:

    And the strength of the light within?

    • QB:

      Log
      how do you quantify light? SOL (Subjective Order of Light) This scripture may help

      For the aword of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ. (D&C84:45)
      T=L=S
      Light and Spirit difficult to measure. Truth however can be quantified albeit using a very simplistic approach We could list or catalogue the number of truths we possess gained by evidence in that each truth we lived (put to the test eg, tithing, prayer, book of Mormon, Joseph smith, obedience to promptings which result in good outcomes or fruit and so on, become the self-validating good fruit of truth held in your possession. Using the formula above the quantity of light possessed would be equal to the quantity of Truth you possess, likewise with spirit.

      Purpose of truth, (Quantifiable Units)
      Purpose of light (Enhanced Vision) broaden our horizons allow us to see afar off and assist in avoiding deception
      purpose of spirit (Power)The power of the universe

      With the above in mind i would have to say that the light that has comeinto my possession is terrifying to point it is would be unlawful to divulge as it would harm more than it would edify.The instruction to Moses sets this out perfectly when he was charged “And now they are spoken unto you. Show them not unto any except them that believe” (Moses 1:42)

  • Log:

    QB,

    I am thinking in these terms: http://crymightily.blogspot.com/2013/02/belief-faith-and-knowledge.html

    I know what it is to be filled with light, and I know what it is to be filled with darkness; I was hoping to find that there is a fullness of light to be had, in comparison with what one has when one is baptized by fire as the sun to the moon.

  • Two gates are portrayed in this gospel, the first gate is the baptism of fire – justification, the second gate is the washing in the blood of Christ – sanctification.

    No, no, no, no, no. My typing is still not up to par to fully unfold this (I’ve switched to the Dvorak keyboard and my speed has temporarily dropped to half of what it was previously) but I’ll just say that there is only one gate and it consists of all three principles: justification, purification and sanctification. Sanctification comes in two forms: impermanent and permanent. A calling and election made sure is simply sanctification, justification and purification made permanent. when you receive the Holy Ghost by baptism, you are impermanently sanctified. In other words, you are still capable of falling from grace. The BoF&HG is the “election” part of “calling and election,” and “made sure” means “made permanent,” or to use prophetic language, it means “to fix” (to the cross) so that it remains immovable, just as Jesus was “made sure.” “The end” is Jesus Himself. The law began with Him (He gave it, or sent it out) and it has an end in Him (He fulfills it or embodies it.) So, we are to endure (in our sanctified state) to the end (until we reach or become like Jesus.) That could happen either in this life or the next, so “the end” does not equate to “physical death.” Entering into the rest of the Lord is the calling and election made sure. Just as when we die, we “rest from our labors” in Paradise (for those who make it there), so those who have been “made sure” have rest, for nothing more is required of them for their own salvation, for they have passed the test and overcome the world.

    Okay, I think I wrote enough, Spek. To recap: sanctification comes by the baptism of the Holy Ghost (the reception of the Spirit), purification comes by the baptism of fire, both of which come of faith in Christ, which also justifies us, but after receiving these blessings of our faith (for it is solely faith in Jesus that saves), it is possible to fall from grace and become again unjustified, unsanctified and unclean sinners, which is why we are commanded to endure (in our sanctified, purified and justified state) to the end, which maintains faith, and to pray without ceasing or fainting, which exercises faith. Then, when “the end” comes, our enduring state is made permanent, again by our faith in Christ.

    • Spektator:

      LDSA,
      I can appriciate you position on the matter. I was on point with you for a long time but I really want to make sure I understand clearly from a scriptural and spiritual perspective before I add much more to the conversation.I think there is enough in the scrptures to ‘imply’ that BoF is the same as sanctification or the next step beyond.

      But four no’s? Come on…

      I have to say that as I have been trekking through the journal of discoursed on this topic, there is scant little ‘enlightenment.’ I am only partially through with that exercise.

      • I think the five no-s were a Dvorak stutter. ;)

        Okay, I can appreciate being at a point where former understandings are being questioned. I think my reaction was more my own frustration at learning that the correct understanding (in my view, of course) that you formally held has now changed into a less correct understanding (again, in my view.)

        I usually just let people believe what they believe without correcting them unless I am inspired by the Holy Ghost to speak or I have been asked a question or I have been asked to give me view, but I was so encouraged and impressed by the first writings of yours that I read, which seemed to match my own understandings of sanctification, that I felt compelled to attempt a correction. Besides, this post ends with a “what think ye?”

        I am sure you will figure all this stuff out to your own satisfaction. If you ever want to discuss these principles in depth, just drop me an email.

      • Spektator:

        LDSA,
        Every time I make a discovery, I try to backtrack and make sure that my past knowledge is intact. Such is the case here. The main question, in mind, came down to this. Can one who is sanctified still fall away? If the answer is no, then sanctification is associated with the the outcome of enduring to the end. If, on the other hand, one who is sanctified can lose their way, then it would make more sense that it is associated with the baptism of fire.

        Here is a key scripture for me on this question:

        33 Therefore let the church take heed and pray always, lest they fall into temptation;
        34 Yea, and even let those who are sanctified take heed also.
        (Doctrine and Covenants, Section 20)

        If the sanctified have to to give heed that they don’t fall into temptation, then they haven’t endured to the end. Pretty simple for even my simple mind to comprehend.

        Thanks for your ‘gentle’ prodding.

  • Log:

    Wellll, King Benjamin was explicit about “the end” meaning the end of this mortal life:

    ” 6 I say unto you, if ye have come to a knowledge of the goodness of God, and his matchless power, and his wisdom, and his patience, and his long-suffering towards the children of men; and also, the atonement which has been prepared from the foundation of the world, that thereby salvation might come to him that should put his trust in the Lord, and should be diligent in keeping his commandments, and continue in the faith even unto the end of his life, I mean the life of the mortal body—

    7 I say, that this is the man who receiveth salvation, through the atonement which was prepared from the foundation of the world for all mankind, which ever were since the fall of Adam, or who are, or who ever shall be, even unto the end of the world.”

    And Jesus did refer to “the night” wherein nothing more can be done…

    “33 And it came to pass that when Jesus had ended these sayings he said unto his disciples: Enter ye in at the strait gate; for strait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it; but wide is the gate, and broad the way which leads to death, and many there be that travel therein, until the night cometh, wherein no man can work.”

    But hey. If someone knows more about it, then of course their word is to be preferred.

  • Rob:

    1) The end in the general sense (as in endure to the end) does not mean the end of this life. It means to endure until one has subdued all enemies under one’s feet. Although this event occurs for most people after this life if it all, that is only because of their love of the world, and not because of some innate inability. King Benjamin was speaking to the multitudes and therefore gave the definition that applied best to his audience, a hodge-podge of members with roller-coaster faith (incredible one day, gone the next).

    2) Sanctification is not the baptism by fire. It comes afterwards, when one increases substantially enough in the love for God and faith in him that, through their knowledge of things as they really are, they have zero desire to sin. To clarify what LDSAnarchist said, it is sanctification that precedes calling and election. Calling and election doesn’t “make” you anything. It is simply God revealing to you that the knowledge that you are on the right track will not derail you.

    3) RE: the high priesthood as in Alma 13: http://upwardthought.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-high-priesthood.html

  • Log:

    King Benjamin’s people were faithful, not spiritual rollercoasters. It was their children who fell away (Mosiah 26).

    King Benjamin’s people, as well as the Lamanites, witnessed they had lost all desire for evil at their conversion.

    1 And now, it came to pass that when king Benjamin had thus spoken to his people, he sent among them, desiring to know of his people if they believed the words which he had spoken unto them.

    2 And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.

    Alma 19:33

    33 And it came to pass that when Ammon arose he also administered unto them, and also did all the servants of Lamoni; and they did all declare unto the people the selfsame thing—that their hearts had been changed; that they had no more desire to do evil.

    And I testify to the same thing. That is precisely what is meant by the “mighty change of heart” that we lose all desire for evil. You have agree that is sanctification, and it does come by the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost.

    As a general rule, if someone contradicts the scriptures and my own revelations, I reject him.

  • Log:

    60 For by the water ye keep the commandment; by the Spirit ye are justified, and by the blood ye are sanctified;

    61 Therefore it is given to abide in you; the record of heaven; the Comforter; the peaceable things of immortal glory; the truth of all things; that which quickeneth all things, which maketh alive all things; that which knoweth all things, and hath all power according to wisdom, mercy, truth, justice, and judgment.

    64 And it came to pass, when the Lord had spoken with Adam, our father, that Adam cried unto the Lord, and he was caught away by the Spirit of the Lord, and was carried down into the water, and was laid under the water, and was brought forth out of the water.

    65 And thus he was baptized, and the Spirit of God descended upon him, and thus he was born of the Spirit, and became quickened in the inner man.

    66 And he heard a voice out of heaven, saying: Thou art baptized with fire, and with the Holy Ghost. This is the record of the Father, and the Son, from henceforth and forever;

    67 And thou art after the order of him who was without beginning of days or end of years, from all eternity to all eternity.

    68 Behold, thou art one in me, a son of God; and thus may all become my sons. Amen.

    And thus it is.

  • Log:

    So, to be clear on this one – once baptized, justified (born again), and sanctified (cleansed by fire), the Holy Ghost is given to dwell in you. This is all rolled up into the baptism by fire.

  • It looks like we’re all over the spectrum on this one.

  • Jack:

    Let me broaden the spectrum. The whole thing can happen incrementally — much like an infant becoming a child and a child becoming a boy and a boy becoming a young man and a young man becoming a man and a man becoming a middle aged man and a middle aged man becoming an elderly man. We’ve labeled these stages for convenience, but really — where are the thresholds? They are imperceptible. Yes, God will declare unto us that we have eternal life, but, perhaps, we will only understand *why* with hindsight.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    The Holy Ghost does not dwell in you until you’re sanctified (Moses 6:60-61), which is given in the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost (3 Nephi 27:20), and, as Joseph taught, “No man can receive the Holy Ghost without receiving revelations. The Holy Ghost is a revelator.”(Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith (1976), 328). Therefore, they are indeed perceptible. Progressive sanctification is nowhere taught in the scriptures; quite the opposite (D&C 20:31, 34).

    Only them who have not received them think them to be imperceptible, and that is because they have had nothing to perceive. God is no respecter of persons, therefore they come upon all alike, and we only receive these things when we comply with the law upon which these blessings are predicated.

  • Jack:

    “No man can receive the Holy Ghost without receiving revelations. The Holy Ghost is a revelator.”

    It follows logically then that if a person is receiving revelation he must have received or is in the process of receiving the Holy Ghost. There are many folks who can bear witness of receiving revelation who are not ready to claim that they’ve been sanctified.

    As to perception, The spirit can indeed be perceptible. But one’s process of growth is not always as apparent.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    It does not follow logically that if a person is receiving revelation he must have received or is in the process of receiving the Holy Ghost.

    And this is proven precisely on the evidence you bring to bear: there ARE *many* folks who can bear witness of receiving revelation who are not sanctified, and may not be until they are redeemed from prison in the next life. People outside of the Church receive actual revelations as well, and it ought to be clear they are ineligible for the gift of the Holy Ghost unless and until they repent of all their sins, call upon the name of the Lord to be redeemed from them, and submit to baptism by the authority of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

  • Jack:

    I’m speaking of folks in the church who receive revelation on a regular basis; who have generally made the right decisions in their life because of a willingness to receive counsel from God; who have a sense of what they ought to be working on in order to move forward personally in the things of the spirit. Of these good people there are many. And though they may not be completely sanctified at present they will be in process of time — and they will most certainly be received into paradise, not prison.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    If they do not repent and become sanctified and receive the testimony of Jesus through the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost, they shall be those spoken of in D&C 76:74.

    That type constituted a great portion of the Church in Joseph’s time.

    [quote]Third–”Will everybody be damned, but Mormons?”

    Yes, and a great portion of them, unless they repent, and work righteousness. (History of the Church, Vol.3, Ch.3, p.28-30)[/quote]

    I have no reason to suppose we are any better than they, and much evidence to the contrary.

  • Jack:

    I see them (us) more like those whom the Lord chastened in D&C section 101 particularly verse three: “Yet I will own them, and they shall be mine in that day when I shall come to make up my jewels.”

  • Log:

    Jack,

    If one has been commanded to repent of all one’s sins and call upon the Lord in one’s might to receive a remission of them and receive the Holy Ghost, and one doesn’t do it all the days of one’s mortal life, then why would the Lord would own such an one at his coming? For such an one has not taken upon them the name of Christ, and will not hear the call at his coming.

    Those whom the Lord shall own at his coming are them who have obeyed the first commandment, which is to repent, and whom he has commanded to offer up sacrifice in similitude of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, as was Abraham, and have endured chastening and trials to the depths of their souls, and have overcome all through faithfulness.

    If one has not repented of all one’s sins, been called to sacrifice all for the Lord’s sake, and is not chastened to the utmost, then one is no son of God, but a bastard (Hebrews 12:1-8).

  • Jack:

    Whoa, slow down cowboy. Let’s talk about the scripture I quoted you. God says that he will own them — I don’t think he meant it in modern colloguial terms. He says they will be his at some point though at the time they were in need of chastening because of their sins. I think most of us who are striving to live the gospel fall somewhere in that gambit. We have had the opportunity to show our willingness to sacrifice. We’ve been chastened from time to time and we are certainly trying to be better, repenting continuously. But! This does not necessarily mean that we’re sanctified. And it certainly does not mean that we won’t sin and, therefore, be straitened by the Lord. But it could mean that we’re justified or well on our way to it. The spirit operating in one’s life on a regular basis is a sign of justification.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    I know what the word “own” means, bro, and I used it correctly; I am intimately familiar with D&C 101:2-5.

    If you die in your sins, not having been sanctified in this life, you gain at most the terrestrial kingdom.

    The spirit operating in one’s life is a sign of the Lord’s mercy; that is all it means; even them outside of the church have the spirit operating in their life daily, yet they are not justified nor cleansed from their sins. There is hope for you yet, but you’re not getting any younger: why not make today the day you cry unto the Lord? Why not make today the day you finally, after all these years, repent of all your sins and call upon God in the name of the Son to be redeemed from them?

    Don’t you believe he will give redemption to you?

  • Jack:

    I know you know what “own” means. I was joking at your rather harsh interpretation of the scriptures with regard to your fellow saints.

    I’m sorry but I think your are just wrong — too fundamentlist in your interpretation of salvific doctrine. What of Joseph Smith’s vision of Alvin in the Celestial Kingdom? Was Alvin sanctified before he died? What of the untold millions who have died without knowing anything about the gospel? There must be some post-mortal mechanism in place to allow them to receive the gospel and be sanctified (if they so chose) as must have been the case with Alvin. That or God is not very good at saving his children.

    Now you might say that those who have received a knowledge of the gospel in this life are under a different obligation — that they must be sanctified before they die or they cannot attain the highest. Would you say this must be the case with an eight year old child who is baptized one day and hit by a bus the next? I doubt you would. And if not, then were exactly does the threshold lie between knowing enough to be condemned for not being sanctified and not knowing enough?

    Yes, God is just but He is not unreasonable. I think that an overly fundamental view of the gospel causes our perception of God to be rather capricious.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    Regarding Joseph’s vision of Alvin in the Celestial Kingdom, let’s see what it says.

    7 Thus came the voice of the Lord unto me, saying: All who have died without a knowledge of this gospel, who would have received it if they had been permitted to tarry, shall be heirs of the celestial kingdom of God;

    8 Also all that shall die henceforth without a knowledge of it, who would have received it with all their hearts, shall be heirs of that kingdom;

    9 For I, the Lord, will judge all men according to their works, according to the desire of their hearts.

    And, by the scriptures, you know that the baptism by fire is part of the gospel of Christ, wherein we are sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost. If you have not received this, you have not received the Gospel. These, whom receive the Gospel in the next life, are they who would have received it with all their heart and would not have defied the truth, by, say, arguing against it.

    D&C 39:6 And this is my gospel—repentance and baptism by water, and then cometh the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost, even the Comforter, which showeth all things, and teacheth the peaceable things of the kingdom.

    And you know by now the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost is whereby we are sanctified, and you know by now that it is by grace through faith we receive it after we repent of all our sins, by mighty prayer unto God to receive.

    It is given to all who seek it with all their hearts (1 Nephi 10:17), and if you don’t seek and receive it on those terms, you have not received the gospel and shall not be found in the Celestial Kingdom, where only the just made perfect (D&C 76:69) who have received the Holy Ghost and have been cleansed from their sins are (D&C 76:50-53).

    If you teach more or less than this, you are teaching some other gospel than that taught by the Savior.

    And yes, the 8 year old shall be judged by his knowledge and intents, the same as you would be if you were hit by a bus tomorrow; and if the 8 year old’s parents failed to teach him of the doctrine of repentance and of the baptism by fire, then the 8 year old’s sins shall be answered upon the heads of his parents (D&C 68:25). You, however, cannot claim ignorance.

    Why don’t you ask of God, who giveth liberally, and upbraideth not, if these things are not true? Why don’t you make today the day you repent of all your sins and cry mightily unto God to be redeemed from them? Do you not believe he will answer you? What do you have going on in your life that is better than being made clean from all your sins, that your years-long labor of repentance might finally be completed? Or do you not believe in repentance from all your sins?

  • Log:

    Jack,

    If you think I’m being harsh, check out 1 Nephi 10:17-22, in particular verse 21.

    In plain English, if you have ever sought to do wickedly in your life you are cut off from God eternally. The only way out is to repent (and not continually repent, but to actually repent) and come unto Christ.

  • QB:

    Where we go
    Telestial Beings are those who do not receive the Gospel, they get to do this all again
    D&C 76:81,82 And again, we saw the glory of the telestial, which glory is that of the lesser, even as the glory of the stars differs from that of the glory of the moon in the firmament.

    82 These are they who received not the gospel of Christ, neither the atestimony of Jesus.

    In other words you will be resurrected to a Telestial order if you do not receive the gospel, which is defined in D&C 39:5,6 as faith in Jesus Christ, Repentance to baptism of water, then repentance to baptism of fire and holy Ghost If you have received the BOF congratulations you have been moved to a Terrestrial level (notice how nothing has changed but the light you receive which seems to flow continually in your direction) you have received what is officially known in the scripture as the Holy Spirit of Promise which promise is that if you continue to follow the voice you have listened to, to get this far you WILL have the promise sealed and thereby receive your calling and election, from the hand of your God and Savoir, you are raised to the level of Celestial.
    From this it should be clear how important the BOF is, nothing happens without it, no movement forward, at this level things are much more intense for you will realize how much responsibility you have for everyone else, Fear has no place in this work, Love and only love overcomes fear which is why, brethren and sisters, do not trouble yourself about your worthiness you have no ability judge anyone including yourself, and we are typically much more harsh with ourselves, two things impede our forward movement, walls and whatever we are hanging onto What makes obtaining the BOF so difficult is the ability to be offer a sincere heart or broken heart and contrite spirit, thats why it takes all day.

    • Spektator:

      QB,
      I think your last paragraph encapsulates the core message to the seeker. Don’t beat yourself up about your less than perfect’ choices. Knock and He will answer. Faith and humility represent the essential prerequisites to receiving this extraordinary gift of the spirit.

      What will come out from the baptism of fire experience is a profound and unimaginably deep love for all. It comes from feeling the love of God and extends all His children. All I can say is that is well worth the effort.

  • Log:

    How much harsher (narrow, fundamentalist) can it be than what the Lord hath said?

    D&C 132:21 Verily, verily, I say unto you, except ye abide my law ye cannot attain to this glory.

    22 For strait is the gate, and narrow the way that leadeth unto the exaltation and continuation of the lives, and few there be that find it, because ye receive me not in the world neither do ye know me.

    23 But if ye receive me in the world, then shall ye know me, and shall receive your exaltation; that where I am ye shall be also.

    24 This is eternal lives—to know the only wise and true God, and Jesus Christ, whom he hath sent. I am he. Receive ye, therefore, my law.

    25 Broad is the gate, and wide the way that leadeth to the deaths; and many there are that go in thereat, because they receive me not, neither do they abide in my law.

    Let them who have ears to hear, hear.

  • JR:

    I have spent several days pondering, praying and researching the doctrine of sanctification, the title of this thread.
    From all I can determine, baptism is the gate into the strait and narrow way. Baptism of Fire and the Holy Ghost is the process that propels us forward on that strait and narrow way, just as spoken of by Nephi in 2 Nephi 31, until we arrive at a state where we meet the Savior face to face.
    From there on, it is as HE directs us in preparation to meet the Father. Along the way of the strait and narrow we can speak with the tongue of angels, as they (and we) speak the words of Christ. It is my opinion, having studied this for some days now, that sanctification takes place when or after we meet the Savior face to face. Being sanctified is a pre-requisite to being introduced to the Father. I do not believe that Baptism of Fire and the Holy Ghost “sanctifies” us, although the “fire” does purify us and remit our sins. Even after receiving the Calling & Election we continue to sin. At this point we are still in a state where we continue to sin, but hopefully it is only out of ignorance and mistakes but not knowingly or out of malice or any evil intent.
    Hope this makes sense.
    JR

    • Log:

      JR,

      3 Nephi 27:20 is controlling and definitive on this subject. As we are born again at the baptism by fire, and are given charity, the greatest of the gifts of God, if we remain diligent unto prayer (Moroni 7:48), we do not sin anymore, according to 1 John 3.

    • EvenTheLeastSaint:

      Hi JR, I might catch heck and dangnation for this, but I think there are different levels of sanctification, one level at BF, a higher level at Second Comforter, and a higher level when one is taken by Christ to the Father, but that’s just an opinion.

  • EvenTheLeastSaint:

    Jack: [Speaking of BF&HG]
    February 21, 2013 at 8:08 pm
    “Let me broaden the spectrum. The whole thing can happen incrementally — much like an infant becoming a child and a child becoming a boy and a boy becoming a young man and a young man becoming a man and a man becoming a middle aged man and a middle aged man becoming an elderly man. We’ve labeled these stages for convenience, but really — where are the thresholds? They are imperceptible. Yes, God will declare unto us that we have eternal life, but, perhaps, we will only understand *why* with hindsight.”

    Show me the scriptural passages that compare BF&HG to an infant becoming a child and a child becoming a boy, etc. (Please don’t feel free to invent scripture even though that seems quite common now). Instead the scriptures liken the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost to being born, being baptized, entering a gate, (event, event, event).

    In addition to these analogies there are several examples in the Book of Mormon of those who have received BF&HG that show us what to expect from this event, while there are no examples like what you describe that is referred to as the baptism of fire. Is it in the least bit reasonable to presume that the scriptures provide us with only illustrations of what NOT to expect? It seems that it is only in conference talks that we hear, “don’t expect a dramatic experience”. of coarse this is the unbelief that brought the whole Church under condemnation, even all. (D&C 84: 55,56). it is because we do not believe the Book of Mormon.

  • Jack:

    EvenTheLeastSaint,

    The examples from the Book of Mormon have more to do with apostates and Lamanites than with believing Nephites. With the exception of Alma and his son, both of whom were wicked in the extreme, what conversion stories does the BoM offer about any of the great Nephite prophets? Or for that matter, any of your regular average believing joe-Nephites? What of them? What of the millions of believing Nephites that lived during their thousand year history?

    Mormon purposely cherry-picks the few miraculous conversion stories from Nephite history for our benefit today, that the world may know of the doctrine of spiritual rebirth.

    • log:

      Enos

      Nephi (1 Nephi 2:16)

      Just to name two who weren’t “wicked”. If you don’t care if they were “wicked”, you may add Alma, and his son Alma, to the list, as well as Ammon and his brethren.

      The example of the brother of Jared is instructive in this light, too.

  • EvenTheLeastSaint:

    Jack: “…what conversion stories does the BoM offer about any of the great Nephite prophets? Or for that matter, any of your regular average believing joe-Nephites?”

    Aren’t you forgetting King Benjamen’s people? Mosiah, father of King Benjamen, hearkened unto the Lord and fled from the land of Nephi into the wilderness with as many as would listen to the voice of the Lord. (Omni 1:12,13). “And they were admonished continually by the word of God; and they were led by the power of his arm, through the wilderness until they came down into the land which is called the land of Zarahemla.” Omni 1:13

    These are righteous Nephites who were spared destruction by the hand of the Lord, but they had not yet experienced the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost. (Imagine the LDS Church being called into the wilderness and only those who would listen to the voice of the Lord were included). King Benjamen became king of these righteous People. At the end of his life he delivered a message to his people that was delivered to him by an angel of God. (If we are so danged righteous, when is the last time a speaker in conference announced that his message was delivered to him in the night by an angel?) Anyway you know the rest of the story. His people received the Baptism of Fire, also they called it born of the spirit, a mighty change of Heart, a remission of sins etc. That’s how we know these things are aspects of the same event.

    And before you have time to rationalize that one away, let me mention The people at the time of Christ’s appearance. Only the very righteous of the Nephites (about two thousand) who were worthy to behold the resurrected Lord were there. The twelve and the righteous people, all received the Baptism of Fire. This is probably the most doctrinally rich account of the event of the Baptism of Fire in the Book of Mormon. We learn that men (the twelve deciples) were given the power to Baptize by water, but Christ himself administers the baptism of fire (3 Ne 12:1). That is because Christ employs no servant at the gate. (remember the gate, 2 Ne 31?) This is the real thing. Only He knows the hearts of men. The baptism by water is only a formality “by water ye keep the commandment”. Men can be trusted with the outward ordinance.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    The Lord is no respecter of persons; all blessings are predicated upon obedience to the law that governs them. What those apostates and sinners got, you can get, on the same terms: repent of all your sins, cry with all your might unto the Lord and ask for the remission of sins, and don’t stop asking until you receive it!

  • Log:

    Help me to understand, Jack: why won’t you ask for this gift from God? You know all things are possible unto God, you have the scriptural examples and teachings before you, and you know God gives according to their righteous desires unto all who qualify themselves for blessings: why don’t you ask for it?

  • JR:

    Log,
    No intention of contending, just my own pondering…

    3 Nephi 27:20 is controlling and definitive on this subject. As we are born again at the baptism by fire, and are given charity, the greatest of the gifts of God, if we remain diligent unto prayer (Moroni 7:48), we do not sin anymore, according to 1 John 3.

    I see in those scriptures what you are saying, but could we be misreading them? if we indeed do not sin anymore after recvng BFHG, then what purpose is served by passing thru the strait and narrow, when does C&E come, when does Fulness of Priesthood come, what purpose in recvng Second Comforter? Being Sanctified does qualify to enter the presence of the Father and no greater blessing can a man receive in mortality. Do you believe that level of preparation is present for those who have recvd BFHG?
    JR

  • Log:

    JR,

    After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, is baptized for the remission of his sins, and receives the Holy Ghost (by the laying on of hands), which is the first Comforter, then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness and living by every word of God. The Lord will soon say unto him, ‘Son, thou shalt be exalted.’ When the Lord has thoroughly proved him and finds that the man is determined to serve him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and election made sure.

    At that time, the person shall be chosen, called up, and anointed a king and a priest unto the Most High God, as promised in the temple.

    Those who have repented, called upon the name of the Lord until they had faith in Christ, been baptized by fire, and have walked from that day to this retaining their remission of sins, as taught by King Benjamin (Mosiah 4:11-12), evidenced by the light of the Spirit in their hearts, are worthy to enter the presence of God at any time, for they are holy, and without spot; they are the temples of God, for the Holy Ghost dwells in them; they are the children of God. These are they who are prepared for the coming of the Bridegroom, and who shall hear his call at his coming, for in his own name shall he call them, which is the name of Christ.

  • Jack:

    ETLS & Log,

    The examples of Nephi & Enos are interesting — they’re not identical. Nephi’s heart is softened and Enos has the voice of the Lord come to his mind. These sound (to me) like different operations of the spirit — wonderful manifestations given to those men, respectively, because of their specific needs. But! I don’t really see these moments as completely transformative.

    Re: Mosiah’s people — I think it’s a stretch to assume that none of those people were converted before King Benjamin’s address. One gets the idea that they were righteous — they willingly kept the commandments which was a sign of their love and commitment to God. Now, certainly, they were spiritually begotten as a group which would imply that many of them received the baptism of fire right then and there. But my personal view is that this was a temple experience of sorts and, therefore, most likely involved even more than receiving the Holy Ghost.

    Re: Those that received the Savior when he visited the Nephites — Well, if they were the most righteous of the Nephite nation then one might be led to assume that they already knew something the workings of the spirit. Nephi, especially, was already sanctified (I assume) and yet he, along with the rest, experiences the same out pouring of the spirit. And if Nephi — one who was sanctified — experienced this out-pouring then logic would dictate that there must have been others in the group who were already mature in the things of the spirit. Therefore, one is led to conclude that this was not THE *initial* baptism of fire — at least not for some of them. We also need to consider the little children who were in the midst of the heavenly fire. Children have no need of the Baptism of Fire in order to be saved. So what’s going on? The best I can figure is that this miraculous out-pouring was intended to edify all to the maximum lawful degree which would have made initial spiritual rebirth part and parcel of the overall experience for some.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    There will always be a possible, if not plausible, counterargument.

    Since one is born again through the baptism by fire, and you know it is required to be born again to receive the Celestial Kindgom, why aren’t you seeking after it instead of arguing that it isn’t necessary, or arguing that you have received it although you have noticed nothing?

    I wish, with all my heart, you would simply call upon God in mighty prayer and continue supplicating him for this gift until you received. I honestly don’t understand what is preventing you from making that whole-souled effort.

    Someone once told me I had to pray for a certain thing in order to obtain something else I truly desired. I kind of took offense to that, because nobody like being told what to pray for – call it the “who do you think you are?” principle – but I recognized that offense, that impulse to reject, was my own hardness of heart. I analyzed what I was being told to pray for and realized that what was to be sought after was good and desirable in and of itself, that it did not (and could not) lead to sin or wickedness, that it indeed was a worthy objective that would make me stronger in the faith of Christ. So it is now part of my prayers. In time I will be given it, as well as what I truly want, so long as I am faithful.

  • Jack:

    Log,

    I am pretty much aware of what’s going on in my own life. I don’t comment on this blog to satiate my own fears on the subject of conversion so much as I try to defend the wonderful people in the church whom you (and others in this forum) would condemn to something lesser than what you feel you have received. You have repeatedly stated that God is no respecter of persons — and you have implied that all may experience what you have experienced if they will but exercize the same faith. But what you fail to understand is that God, because he is indeed no respecter of persons, will lead kindly any of his children by whatever measure of his spirit they are willing to receive. And as such he is able to draw his children back to himself if they will but continue to receive his word.

    Instead of wondering why I haven’t experienced a one time transformative reception of the spirit why don’t you try to understand what I’m saying about the scriptures? I’m really not trying to ratioanlize everything away. I’m try to get you to understand that your views are too narrow, wholly too exclusionary of too many of God’s beloved children. He knows them; he knows how to lead them. And so many of them have given themselves over to his will and yet that kind of Abrahamic sacrifice is insufficient according to your take on the doctrine. It is a capricious God you worship.

  • Jack:

    I should clarify: That kind of sacrifice is insufficient because they have not experienced the reception of the spirit in a manner that is compatible with your interpretation of the scriptures. But look! They yield the fruits of the spirit in their lives. What more proof do you need? There are saints in this church.

  • Log:

    I try to defend the wonderful people in the church whom you (and others in this forum) would condemn to something lesser than what you feel you have received.

    The scriptures repeatedly state that to enter the Celestial Kingdom you must receive the testimony of Jesus, helpfully defined in Moses as the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost. This is another way of saying unless a man is born of water and of the Spirit, or by fire, he shall in no case enter into the kingdom of God, the Father.

    You have repeatedly stated that God is no respecter of persons — and you have implied that all may experience what you have experienced if they will but exercize the same faith. But what you fail to understand is that God, because he is indeed no respecter of persons, will lead kindly any of his children by whatever measure of his spirit they are willing to receive. And as such he is able to draw his children back to himself if they will but continue to receive his word.

    Do you consider arguing against the truth rather than obeying it being willing to receive the word of God? When a man says he is ready for more, the Lord sends a teacher. If the man rejects the teacher, then the man shows he was insincere in his request for further light and knowledge, and is left to himself.

    Instead of wondering why I haven’t experienced a one time transformative reception of the spirit why don’t you try to understand what I’m saying about the scriptures? I’m really not trying to ratioanlize everything away. I’m try to get you to understand that your views are too narrow, wholly too exclusionary of too many of God’s beloved children. He knows them; he knows how to lead them. And so many of them have given themselves over to his will and yet that kind of Abrahamic sacrifice is insufficient according to your take on the doctrine. It is a capricious God you worship.

    I know why you haven’t received the Holy Ghost. You have yet to make the prayer of faith to gain the gift, and you haven’t made this prayer, because you assume you have received the gift already. And no, I’m not mind reading; this is the sum and substance of your posts on the subject.

    I do not adopt your interpretation of the scriptures because you are unqualified to teach (D&C 42:14).

    Have you sacrificed your wife, children, job, or property, at the direct request of God? If you have not, you do not understand the Abrahamic sacrifice. And you won’t understand it until and unless you are sanctified, for it is when you have truly entered into a covenant of obedience with God, and have been baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost in consequence of this covenant, that he will test you on your commitment.

    They yield the fruits of the spirit in their lives. What more proof do you need? There are saints in this church.

    People outside of the church do likewise, yet they are not saved, for they have not been baptized by fire by the prayer of faith and received a remission of sins. They are not saints, for they are not sanctified, having not obeyed the first commandment, which is to repent.

    3 Nephi 14:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.

    22 Many will say to me in that day: Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name, and in thy name have cast out devils, and in thy name done many wonderful works?

    23 And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

  • Log:

    To be perfectly clear, I do not wonder why you have not received, for it is perfectly obvious why you have not; I wonder instead why you choose not do what is required to receive that gift, even though the requirement has been spelled out in plainness.

  • Log:

    For my part, Jack, I’ll leave you to yourself.

  • Log:

    … because I really came to this blog to discuss things with people who had likewise called upon God until they had faith in Christ and were baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost, even if some of them are no longer sanctified – for we who have received those things understand one another and can speak of the peaceable things of the Kingdom to each other. It is so refreshing to be able to see eye-to-eye with them who have likewise had their eyes opened.

  • Spektator:

    I don’t see picking apart the examples of the baptism of fire in the scriptures as a way forward. The scriptures give us a clear picture of this event.

    “17…that ye might know the gate by which ye should enter. For the gate by which ye should enter is repentance and baptism by water; and then cometh a remission of your sins by fire and by the Holy Ghost.
    18 And then are ye in this strait and narrow path which leads to eternal life; yea, ye have entered in by the gate…
    (Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi, Chapter 31)

    Jack, after all the times I have asked the question, you have not answered it. Here it goes again:

    What does a ‘gate’ symbolize in this quote? If the entry point to the strait and narrow path is described as a gate, does that speak of a long imperceptible process or an event?

    On the broader topic, if there is one thing that my experience has taught me, it is that my Father in Heaven has an unlimited love for me and all those who seek him. The more we align our thoughts and actions with His, the closer we can come to Him. We choose how close we are willing to approach the Father by the choices we make.

    Speaking of the Book of Mormon,

    “the fulness of the everlasting Gospel was contained in it, as delivered by the Savior to the ancient inhabitants; “(Pearl of Great Price, Joseph Smith—History, Joseph Smith—History 1)

    I believe that the fulness means that it contains all of the gospel. We have in our hands, in the words of the Savior in Third Nephi, the totality of the fulness of the gospel. We should take care not to attempt to inject any more or any less than what is contained in those words.

    Spek

  • Jack:

    Log: “When a man says he is ready for more, the Lord sends a teacher. If the man rejects the teacher, then the man shows he was insincere in his request for further light and knowledge, and is left to himself.”

    Well, I suppose you’re talking about yourself here as the teacher — and that’s OK. I’m willing to learn from anyone. But if your teachings are out of line with those whom God has called to be his special witnesses then they (your teachings) are suspect.

    Judge me as you will. I’m trying to do better at living the gospel — and I know that it’ll be a long time before I’ve learned my salvation. But even so, I know enough about things to surmise that your argument is based heavily on ideology. Beware of ridged creedalism.

    Log: “Have you sacrificed your wife, children, job, or property, at the direct request of God? If you have not, you do not understand the Abrahamic sacrifice.”

    God knows the hearts of his children and will try them in a way that best suits their growth. While I haven’t been tried to the degree that Abraham was I, along with so many others in the church, know enough about the works of Abraham to have some sense of it — we can “taste” it.

    Spektator: “What does a ‘gate’ symbolize in this quote? If the entry point to the strait and narrow path is described as a gate, does that speak of a long imperceptible process or an event?”

    I think the more important aspect of this imagery has to do with *where* we enter rather than with how long it takes us to cross the threshold.

  • Log:

    Jack,

    If you think any of the prophets or apostles have ever spoken out against repenting of all one’s sins and calling upon God to receive a remission of them, and to not cease crying unto him until you are received, I would be most interested to see your citations. As it is, by longstanding explicit teachings of the prophets and apostles, if any man’s teaching contradicts the standard works, the standard works prevail.

  • The Servant:

    Jack said:

    But if your teachings are out of line with those whom God has called to be his special witnesses then they (your teachings) are suspect.

    Isaiah said:

    56:10 His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber.

    Isaiah said:

    28:1,2
    1. Woe to the garlands of glory
    of the drunkards of Ephraim!
    Their crowning splendor has become as fading wreaths
    on the heads of athe opulenta overcome with wine.

    2. My Lord has in store one mighty and strong:
    as a ravaging hailstorm sweeping down,
    or like an inundating deluge of mighty waters,
    he will hurl them to the ground by his hand.

    D&C 85:7,8 said:

    7 And it shall come to pass that I, the Lord God, will send one mighty and strong, holding the scepter of power in his hand, clothed with light for a covering, whose mouth shall utter words, eternal words; while his bowels shall be a fountain of truth, to set in order the house of God, and to arrange by lot the inheritances of the saints whose names are found, and the names of their fathers, and of their children, enrolled in the book of the law of God;
    8 While that man, who was called of God and appointed, that putteth forth his hand to steady the ark of God, shall fall by the shaft of death, like as a tree that is smitten by the vivid shaft of lightning.

    • Jack:

      The Servant,

      I guess you got the inside scoop. How do you know those prophetic pronouncements are fulfilled by the current leadership?

      That kind of proof texting is as silly as our evangelical friends shouting that Joseph Smith is a fraud because, lo, he saw an angel. And, of course, that angel declared a different gospel to him than what was declared to Paul therefore yadda, yadda…

  • Jack:

    Log,

    That’s not what we’re talking about. The big question is whether or not the baptism of fire can only be a singular event.

    Re: The standard works — Sometimes there’s a difference between what they say and what we think they say. And I’d like to believe that living prophets can offer valuable counsel on determining that difference.

  • Log:

    The scriptures and the prophets have been univocal on the baptism by fire: there is no debate on whether it is a singular event or not: it is. There have not yet been any contrary citations, and we who have received it speak with one voice about it. There is only controversy among them who have not received it.

    Those who have experienced what the scriptures are talking about know what the scriptures say by the power of the Holy Ghost. The general authorities likewise are best understood by the Spirit. This is because things of the Spirit can only be understood in the Spirit. That is why men need to receive the Holy Ghost, and why it is so disturbing when, even when the need and the way is pointed out as clearly as can be, people still won’t do it.

  • The three baptisms are of different mediums (water, fire, Holy Ghost) but they are all based on the principle of immersion. Just as we do not sprinkle water over a person over time or dip a leg today and an arm tomorrow and call it “baptism,” so the other two baptisms do not qualify as baptism if performed partially or over time. The whole body must be immersed at the same time for it to be a valid baptism of water, fire or Holy Ghost.

  • Log:

    I also need to point out, again, that one’s calling in the church, no matter how high, is no shield against error, and that lack of calling in the church is no guarantee of error.

    In the end, cursed is he who puts his trust in man, even if the man they trust has a high calling in the church.

  • QB:

    Jack, noone who has experienced the mighty change or BOF would as you put it “would condemn to something lesser than what you feel you have received” where condemnation is felt it is always self-inflicted by assuming in error that this event is special rather than typical, much false doctrine abounds in this, what has been born as testimony on this forum is typical and if you read the 3rd chapter of Teachings of Lorenzo Snow he provides a detailed method and typical result for the sincere searcher. it is also typical to experience frustration when our efforts deliver no fruit,and the heavens remain closed. A close friend of mine who has also posted on this forum had a very frustrating time every prayer seemed to bounce off the roof and around the room, when he finally received his BOF, it came as a surprise, I’m still not sure what he said but he must have said something to open the heavens and obtain his BOF, I was told by the Holy Ghost what to say, I sat there on my knees, waiting for words to say, this is similar to the true order of prayer, notice that you repeat what is said this is the pattern you use to pierce the veil, you will be told by the Holy Ghost what words are acceptable to the Lord all other words will be rejected but those given you by the Holy Ghost, be prepared when you part the veil or when it is parted for you, it may and can be overwhelming.. The Lord is no respecter as you rightly say, look forward to seeing what fruit is born whether good or not so good,

  • log:

    QB,

    Jack is not worried that we are condemning anyone in the sense that we have any influence on anyone’s actual reward in the hereafter. Jack was merely restating his opinion that we are self-righteous, or worse (1 Nephi 17:22).

    Jack,

    A straightforward question, without equivocation: do you believe we have received what we claim? Why or why not?

    Suppose a newly minted seventy were to give a talk in the October conference and state “The baptism by fire is a singular event which is given to men by God when they are truly penitent, and their hearts are broken, and their spirits are contrite, and they humble themselves before him in mighty supplication for forgiveness of their sins.” Would you believe then? Would you believe, were President Monson to say that? Does the calling of the man who says it matter as to whether it is true or not?

    But, let’s take this further.

    Mormon told us this:

    12 Wherefore, all things which are good cometh of God; and that which is evil cometh of the devil; for the devil is an enemy unto God, and fighteth against him continually, and inviteth and enticeth to sin, and to do that which is evil continually.

    13 But behold, that which is of God inviteth and enticeth to do good continually; wherefore, every thing which inviteth and enticeth to do good, and to love God, and to serve him, is inspired of God.

    14 Wherefore, take heed, my beloved brethren, that ye do not judge that which is evil to be of God, or that which is good and of God to be of the devil.

    15 For behold, my brethren, it is given unto you to judge, that ye may know good from evil; and the way to judge is as plain, that ye may know with a perfect knowledge, as the daylight is from the dark night.

    16 For behold, the Spirit of Christ is given to every man, that he may know good from evil; wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God.

    17 But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil; for after this manner doth the devil work, for he persuadeth no man to do good, no, not one; neither do his angels; neither do they who subject themselves unto him.

    18 And now, my brethren, seeing that ye know the light by which ye may judge, which light is the light of Christ, see that ye do not judge wrongfully; for with that same judgment which ye judge ye shall also be judged.

    There is no exception in this, based on the calling of the man it comes through.

    I have in all things spoken solely according to the scriptures, which we as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have agreed, by common consent, are binding upon all of us for doctrine and reproof. The scriptures are the teachings of the Church pertaining to the salvation of men. Conference addresses are jettisoned from our ward libraries after 10 years, but the scriptures endure, and are sent out unto the children of men that they may know the way to life and salvation, that they may be baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost through repentance and faith in Christ unto mighty prayer and no longer require any man to teach them in the ways of life and salvation.

  • Jack:

    Log: “A straightforward question, without equivocation: do you believe we have received what we claim? Why or why not?”

    Not sure. It’s certainly possible that what you received was from God — and that, perhaps, afterwards you went off the rails. I don’t know. It’s also possible that some of you have experienced something else entirely.

    But this much I can say: I agree with all here (as I’ve said before) that we must be born of the spirit. I just think your view of the spiritual mechanisms involved is too narrow.

  • Jack:

    LDS Anarchist: “The whole body must be immersed at the same time for it to be a valid baptism of water, fire or Holy Ghost.”

    I think the relevant comparison between these baptisms is that they must be *total* or complete — not necessarily instantaneous (with respect to the Holy Ghost, at least).

    QB: “…condemnation is felt … by assuming in error that this event is special rather than typical, much false doctrine abounds in this…”

    I can assure that many more would feel condemned by the notion that the baptism of fire ought to be an event. But thankfully the brethren have counseled us on that issue, assuring us that spiritual rebirth is typically a process and not an event.

    It has been mentioned on this blog ad nauseum that the church is in a state of apostasy or well on its way to it because of its deviation from the written word. But IMO apostasy occurs more readily because of an overzealous adherence to an over-wrought interpretation of the written word which leads to a rejection of the prophets, those authorized to dispense the living word. And I think that’s what’s happening here.

    • LDS Anarchist: “The whole body must be immersed at the same time for it to be a valid baptism of water, fire or Holy Ghost.”

      I think the relevant comparison between these baptisms is that they must be *total* or complete — not necessarily instantaneous (with respect to the Holy Ghost, at least).

      No, Jack, we do not preach complete or total baptism, we preach the principle of baptism by immersion. To immerse is “to plunge into something that surrounds or covers; especially : to plunge or dip into a fluid.” To plunge means “to thrust or cast oneself into or as if into water.” There is no sense of immersion that means other than “all at once.” You’ve heard the term “leap of faith?” Same “all at once” principle.

      All three baptisms (water, fire and Holy Ghost) are based on the principle of immersion. Anybody preaching or teaching a non-immersion baptism is preaching a false gospel, regardless of any title they may hold.

  • Log:

    Where have the Brethren said the baptism by fire is a process and not an event?

    I have asked this thrice, and not gotten a response.

    • Spektator:

      Log,
      You could go back to my post on Baptism of Fire – Process or Event found at http://justandtrue.com/?p=386. In that post i quote Packer, Bednar, and Cristoffferson saying exactly that.

      • Log:

        Spektator,

        If you have something specific in mind in that post, I am not seeing it. Where did Packer or Bednar or Cristofferson say “the baptism by fire is a process and not an event”?

      • Spektator:

        Log,
        Do you believe that ‘the mighty change’ and ‘being born again’ are the same as the baptism of fire?
        Those are the terms used in the quotes.

      • Log:

        As I searched through LDS.org to find out what the Brethren have been saying about the baptism by fire, I cannot locate a single one that says it is a process. The assertion that the baptism by fire is a process and not an event, advanced by Jack, is without support in either statements by the Brethren or the scriptures.

      • Log:

        Do you believe that ‘the mighty change’ and ‘being born again’ are the same as the baptism of fire?

        Of course I do. That’s not the issue, however: the issue is do you think Elders Packer, Bednar, or Cristofferson do?

      • Spektator:

        “Being born again, unlike our physical birth, is more a process than an event. And engaging in that process is the central purpose of mortality. ”

        Given this quote, what do you think Christofferson is talking about?

      • Log:
        “Being born again, unlike our physical birth, is more a process than an event. And engaging in that process is the central purpose of mortality. ”

        Given this quote, what do you think Christofferson is talking about?

        Given that quote, he’s not talking about what I talk about. Honestly, I don’t know what he means to say.

        I feel that way when I hear someone say “nobody’s perfect” or “there has only been one perfect person on earth”, and for good reason: http://crymightily.blogspot.com/2013/02/be-ye-therefore-perfect.html

        Whenever someone diverges from the scriptural vocabulary, one owes it to one’s audience to clarify one’s definitions, else one sows confusion. It is unfortunate that some don’t clarify theirs.

      • Spektator:

        Log,
        You have Bednar and Christofferson referring to the proces of being born again and you have Packer inferring that the Lamanites didnt know that they were being baptised by fire and the Holy Ghost just like him. I am pretty sure they know what they are talking about, and so do I.

      • Log:

        I think they know what they are talking about. However, I dont’ know what they think they they’re talking about. That’s my point. They have not defined their terms.

    • Where have the Brethren said the baptism by fire is a process and not an event?

      I have asked this thrice, and not gotten a response.

      It doesn’t matter whether they teach this. This doctrine is simply false and is a crutch they are using to justify the fact that they have not received such a baptism themselves. That is all this is, nothing more. By teaching the people that it is a process they also minimize the possibility of being upstaged by anyone.

      It is an event, pure and simple, both scripturally and according to my own experiences. Even the sanctification of the flesh, which happens when a person is translated and which is another baptism by immersion, is an event. The gospel cycle is a sort of punctuated equilibrium.

  • Jack:

    “They have not defined their terms.”

    OK, let’s go back to square one. And what is truth?

  • Log:

    And truth is knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come; and whatsoever is more or less than this is the spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning. (D&C 93:24-25)

  • Log:

    It doesn’t matter whether they teach this. This doctrine is simply false and is a crutch they are using to justify the fact that they have not received such a baptism themselves. That is all this is, nothing more. By teaching the people that it is a process they also minimize the possibility of being upstaged by anyone.

    It is easy for me to tell who, having been once enlightened, have departed from the right way, for they do not honor the second nor last covenants, and fail also to keep the charge to avoid evil speaking of the Lord’s anointed, and if they wonder why they are no longer filled with light, that is why: their eye is no longer single to the glory of God, nor the welfare of his children at whatever stage of development they may be, or, even, in whatever calling in the Church they may be.

    For if their eye was single to the glory of God, and they were in full fellowship with the Spirit as they were in the days of fire and light and glory, being one with God and his Christ and enjoying the fires of their presences in their heart, they would know they must honor all their covenants.

    Self-justification is the enemy to repentance. It is altogether too easy to point the finger at them who err, be they in whatever position they may be when they err – but the Lord commands that we should cast the beam out of our eye before we tend the motes in our neighbor’s. The beam is not possessing charity.

    I am going to say this explicitly: when you undermine the authorities of the Church, you undermine the Church, which is the Lord’s. Suppose some of the leaders err; suppose some of them have not been converted. Who do you benefit by pointing the finger at them? Who profits? I can only think of two: the scorner who gratifies his ego by so doing, and the accuser of the Brethren, who gains a help in hardening the hearts of the observers against the truth that they do not receive it.

    And they do not receive it because some who say they have received it claim everyone but them is out of the way – thus demonstrating they are on the exact high road to apostasy that Joseph warned against. So why should they listen to those who are so clearly on that high road? Why should they accept their doctrines? Why should they not rather reject them?

    Is the damnation of anyone worth gratifying one’s pride?

    The Spirit is still in the Church, striving with the members, attending the Conferences, and the Church is yet the Lord’s: it still bears good fruit, as them who have been cleansed by fire and retained their remission of sins can attest. You greatly err in your conduct towards the Church.

    As for me, I know that the day will come when all errors and false doctrines shall be confounded by the joint use of the Bible and the Book of Mormon (2 Nephi 3:12). That day hasn’t come yet. The truth in its purity will be sounded in all ears before the day of the Lord. If some reject it because they heard it first from some who are to all appearances on the high road to apostasy, their blood comes upon your garments.

    Therefore, be wise.

  • JR:

    Strong words Log.
    Where do you see the greater danger, in believing everything that is spoken in Genl Conf. and church publications, in believing that everytime a GA opens his mouth he is speaking scripture, when every time the Stake Pres. stands up and pontificates for people to “leave the mysteries alone” it is Gospel, thus leading people into very significant error and unbelief…or in understanding that all is truly Not well in Zion” and that people need to find the Spirit and learn NOT to lean on the arm of flesh but rather learn to hear the Spirit whispering truth to them?
    While I agree that bashing the church and bashing leaders is not a good practice generally because it detracts from following the Savior and learning of HIS truth; at least equally wrong is following blindly after church leaders and false doctrine to destruction…and destruction is surely coming upon this church and this people if they do not repent while there is still time.
    Repenting of unbelief and apostasy is not going to happen while people are content and believe they are on the strait and narrow and that all is well in Zion and all they have to do is follow the herd in following the prophet.
    Perhaps it is time for people to hear someone crying in the wilderness, “repent, make staight the way of the Lord”. We are not the “chosen people” we collectively think we are! There is a pervasive mentality that “all around us are doomed to destruction” while we are going to be saved in our half-hearted religiousity. Those were the Zoramites shouting from the Rameumptom…but we sure act like them in many ways!
    JR

  • Log:

    The greater danger is in failing to walk up to every covenant we have made at the altars of the temple. Everything else is secondary. If we are ourselves not saved at the present time, and are not in full fellowship with God and his Christ, that we are communing with them continually, we have neither faith nor hope nor charity, and therefore cannot assist in the work of the Lord (D&C 18:19)!

    If you want to help the Lord, you must first cast the beam out of your eye! And you do want to help, therefore lay aside all sin and cry mightily, as you did to be filled with fire and light and love and unspeakable joy in the first place!

    Remember that whoever gathereth not with the Lord scattereth abroad. A man must be born of water and of the Spirit else he shall not see the Kingdom of God: who is in charge of the water?

  • The Servant:

    Log said:
    February 27, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    As I searched through LDS.org to find out what the Brethren have been saying about the baptism by fire, I cannot locate a single one that says it is a process. The assertion that the baptism by fire is a process and not an event, advanced by Jack, is without support in either statements by the Brethren or the scriptures.

    Log, If want to get a better sense of what the brethren think about the BF&HG being an event and not a process then I would suggest an experiment. Next fast Sunday get up in Sacrement meeting and testify of that, as you have here, and see where that leads. I think you would shortly discover that you weren’t the first to be hauled before a Church inquisition for teaching true doctrine.

    • Log:

      I teach these things publicly, in fast and testimony meeting, and in talks, and in my quorums, and to my home teaching families, and my children.

      I am the same both online and off.

  • Jack:

    LDS Anarchist,

    Getting a little obsessive over the jots and tittles, aren’t we? How do you explain the obvious process preached in Alma:32?

  • Jack:

    Wow, Servant, you got that comment in while i was working on mine. So, serendipitously, it applies to you as well.

  • Log:

    Wo be unto him that hearkeneth unto the precepts of men, and denieth the power of God, and the gift of the Holy Ghost!

    Cursed is he that putteth his trust in man, or maketh flesh his arm, or shall hearken unto the precepts of men, save their precepts shall be given by the power of the Holy Ghost.

  • JR:

    QB,
    I have a personal question for you.
    Would you feel comfortable swapping emails privately?
    If so, would you please contact Spektator for my email address and contact me?
    Thank you.
    JR

  • Jack:

    LDS Anarchist,

    I cannot find where “by and by” is defined as “immediate.”

    I wonder — for those who are concerned with a particular “protocol” with regard to spiritual rebirth — does it trouble you that some of the Lamanites were born of the spirit *before* being born of water? Because that flatly contradicts what Nephi lays out as the proper sequence of things.

    Log,

    I don’t know who you’re talking to but I agree with it — so long as you’re not implying that the brethren are not in touch with the Holy Ghost.

  • Spektator:

    Jack,
    As far as protocol is concerned, I am as concerned about the Lamanites having the baptism of fire before water baptism as I am with Cornelius, in the New Teatament, who received the same baptism of fire as Peter received and was then told to be baptized by water.

    Just when you think you have things figured out…
    Spek

  • Jack:

    Spektator,

    Just so you know mine was a rhetorical question. I have no problem with the sequence of things in those particular instances.

    LDSA,

    Your current understanding of baptism may have validity within the proper context. But the overall range of legitimate conversion experiences is, I believe, much larger — much more inclusive differing manifestations and intensities of such.

  • Log:

    But the overall range of legitimate conversion experiences is, I believe, much larger — much more inclusive differing manifestations and intensities of such.

    What are your experiential grounds for that belief?

  • Jack:

    Boiling it down to what I personally have experienced defeats the argument as that would narrow the range of experience to mine only. I broaden the range in my thinking by including the experiences of fellow members of the church and counsel from the brethren on the matter — and, need I say, a broader interpretation of scriptural accounts.

    • Jack,

      Do you personally know anyone who has claimed to have experienced the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost gradually over time? (You can include yourself in that, if you want.)

      Do you recall any church leader or general authority who has claimed to have received this baptism over time?

      I ask because there are three witnesses on this forum (Log, QB and myself) who make the claim of having received such a baptism as a punctuated event and all three teach that this is the only way it occurs. So, if you know of others who also claim to have received it, but as a gradual process, you’ve got two sets of contradictory witnesses. Who is right and who is wrong? They cannot both be right. Either the gradualists are right, in that gradual, extended baptism-as-a-process is the norm and punctuated baptism is the exception, or the three witnesses on this forum are right and punctuated baptism is the only norm for there is no other valid form.

      For my own part, anyone who comes to me saying they received the baptism of fire gradually over time is either full of $#!t or confused. (I don’t know how Log and QB would react to such testimony, but that would be my reaction.) However, I’ve never met anyone who has made any such claim. I am the only one I know who has claimed to have received the BoF (other than some people on the Internet, such as Log and QB.) I don’t recall any church leader ever saying, “I have received the baptism of fire.” So, I only know of testimony of punctuated baptism, but perhaps you know of someone who contradicts such testimony.

      • Log:

        I have sought out and found others, in person and over the internet. I know because they bear the proper signs and tokens. We agree in one, and we know each other by the power of the Holy Ghost. It’s like meeting an old friend, when we see each other in person; in writing, we use the same vocabulary, or pick it up like lightning, for we, like Paul, have received the Gospel by revelation.

        We are very few.

      • Log:

        … though I dunno about that “plasma plant” stuff ;). I take it you mean spiritual energy.

  • Log:

    In other words, it is an opinion, and you have no knowledge.

  • Log:

    Jack, you never answered my question – if a newly minted Seventy were to say, in General Conference, that the baptism by fire is an event which is given only when a person repents of all their sins and cries mightily unto the Lord until they receive, would you believe? Why or why not?

    Would you believe it were the current President of the Church to say it in conference?

    Does a statement’s truth value change depending on the calling of the individual who says it?

  • Jack:

    Log: “In other words, it is an opinion, and you have no knowledge.”

    Do you have a perfect knowledge that the baptism of fire can come *only* as an event?

    Re: The new seventy: Well, that would be interesting. I’d way it against what other authorities have said and go from there. And yes, if it were Pres. Monson who said such a thing it would carry more weight for me. But even so, for such a pronouncement to be published as absolute doctrine I’d feel better if it were supported by all, or, at least, most of the apostles.

    LDSA,

    Why make the two mutually inclusive? IMO, conversion can happen in an instant *or* over time. But to answer your question, I know folks from both camps and they get along just fine in the church — sans the swirling tongues of plasma.

  • Log:

    Do you have a perfect knowledge that the baptism of fire can come *only* as an event?

    Yes.

    Re: The new seventy: Well, that would be interesting. I’d way it against what other authorities have said and go from there. And yes, if it were Pres. Monson who said such a thing it would carry more weight for me. But even so, for such a pronouncement to be published as absolute doctrine I’d feel better if it were supported by all, or, at least, most of the apostles.

    How does this, in your view, differ significantly from someone putting their trust in men?

  • Log:

    I need to more fully explicate the “yes.”

    I know the baptism by fire is an event more than I know 2 + 2 = 4. With 2 + 2 = 4, I know this to be true by definition of the terms involved and the standard rules of deductive logic, given the Peano axioms.

    With respect to the baptism by fire, I know by my own experience what it is, and that it is an event for all is a straightforward application of deductive logic to the scriptures. “Thus may all become my sons” (Moses 6:68).

    Therefore, with me, it is beyond an opinion, but it is less than the Lord God saying it to me directly.

    I have checked up on the Brethren on this topic, and they all agree it is an event as well. Therefore, I am at a loss to discover whatever authority you have for your contrary claim, that it is or can be an extended “process” for some.

    • Log:

      The Lord has instructed me that I shall not pretend to knowledge which I do not have, and I do not at this time have a sure knowledge that the baptism by fire and the Holy Ghost is not an extended process for some. Therefore, I rescind the “yes”.

    • Spektator:

      Log,
      When you make the following statement:

      I have checked up on the Brethren on this topic, and they all agree it is an event as well. Therefore, I am at a loss to discover whatever authority you have for your contrary claim, that it is or can be an extended “process” for some.

      We just had the discussion regarding Bednar, Christofferson, and Packer all attesting to the ‘process’ of being born again. What do you mean that the Brethren all agree that it is an event?

      • Log:

        Run a search on lds.org for, in quotes, “baptism by fire”. You’ll see everyone agrees it’s an event, and not a soul speaks of it as an extended process.

      • Jack:

        Log,

        I didn’t have to read too far to find that some of those quotes are qualified as a process a little further into the given talk. Elder Uchtdorf, for example, goes on to use Alma’s idea of planting a seed and nurturing it with patience to get the desired result.

      • Log:

        Jack,

        I repeat: not a single soul describes the baptism by fire as a process. Other things may be described as processes, but the baptism by fire is specifically not one of them.

      • Log:

        Jack, I’m going to be blunt – unless you have an affirmative citation that says, in plain terms and without interpretation, that “the baptism by fire is typically a process,” then I am going to cease engaging with you on the subject because, again, nobody but you has said it, and you have no grounds for your claim.

      • Jack:

        OK, tell me this, what are they saying *is* a process? Because they’re talking about SOMEthing. Is it conversion? Is it receiving the Holy Ghost? Is it becoming sanctified? What is it?

  • Jack:

    Well, maybe we’re not talking about the same thing. I don’t think the brethren regularly use terms such as “baptism of fire.” More often than not they’ll frame it in terms such as “born of the spirit” or “conversion” or what have you. But even so, I’d be careful about parsing these terms too neatly. Their meanings cans overlap or even coincide much like “the spirit of God,” “the spirit of the Lord,” “the Holy Spirit,” “the Holy Ghost,” or even “the spirit.”

    Re: Trusting in men — The Book of Mormon, indeed, all of the Standard Works, are explicit in their teachings about how we should receive the Lord’s anointed.

    • Log:

      The teaching is consistent – we are not to follow men, but the directions of the Holy Ghost. Any who have received the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost are the Lord’s anointed, for that is the anointing of the Lord, and nobody can know who those people are save by revelation.

      JST Mark 9:44 Therefore, let every man stand or fall, by himself, and not for another; or not trusting another.

      Which dovetails nicely with “cursed is he that putteth his trust in man” (2 Nephi 28:31) and “cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm” (2 Nephi 4:34).

      Nephi’s example is instructive. He did not trust that his father’s words or precepts were of the Lord; he asked of the Lord (1 Nephi 2:16) and when the Lord vouched for his father, Nephi believed and obeyed.

    • Re: Trusting in men — The Book of Mormon, indeed, all of the Standard Works, are explicit in their teachings about how we should receive the Lord’s anointed.

      Who are the Lord’s anointed?

      http://ldsanarchy.wordpress.com/2012/10/12/evil-speaking-of-the-lords-anointed/

  • Jack:

    You make the assumption that I follow the counsel of the brethren simply because they’re the brethren. But I can tell you that the Lord has vouched for them (to me) as he did for Nephi’s father.

    “Whether by mine own mouth or by the mouth of my servants it is the same.”

    • Jack:

      I guess the operative word should be “voice” not mouth — but you get my drift.

      • Log:

        I make no assumptions. If you follow their counsel because the Lord has vouched for them, then you do well. If someone follows their counsel without that witness, they do not well.

  • JR:

    LDSA,
    Thank you for the great article on Evil Speaking of the Lord’s Anointed. This is a subject I have been wondering about… who are the Lord’s anointed?; what exactly constitutes evil speaking?; and also, what does taking of the name of the Lord in vain really mean? Denver has written some very good thoughts about that last item.
    I have to agree, speaking the truth, wherever that may lead, should not be construed as “evil speaking”.
    The issue of who is “the Lord’s anointed’ is interesting considering Alma 13 and other scriptures.
    Certainly does not seem necessarily to include those who only have had authority passed to them from another man.
    Good points!
    JR

  • Log:

    The relevant definitions are these.

    evilspeaking

    EVILSPE’AKING, n. [evil and speak.] Slander; defamation; calumny; censoriousness. 1 Pet.2.

    slander

    SLA’NDER, n.

    1. A false tale or report maliciously uttered. and tending to injure the reputation of another by lessening him in the esteem of his fellow citizens, by exposing min to impeachment and punishment, or by impairing his means of lining; defamation. Slander, that worst of poisons, ever finds an easy entrance to ignoble minds.
    2 Disgrace; reproach; disreputation; ill name.
    SLA’NDER, v.t. To defame; to injure by maliciously uttering a false report respecting one; to tarnish or impair the reputation of one by false tales, maliciously told or propagated.

    defamation

    DEFAMATION, n. The uttering of slanderous words with a view to injure anothers reputation; the malicious uttering of falsehood respecting another which tends to destroy or impair his good name, character or occupation; slander; calumny. To constitute defamation in law, the words must be false and spoken maliciously. Defamatory words written and published are called a libel.

    calumny

    CALUMNY, n. Slander; false accusation of a crime or offense, knowingly or maliciously made or reported, to the injury of another; false representation of facts reproachful to another, made by design, and with knowledge of its falsehood; sometimes followed by on. Neglected calumny soon expires.

    censure

    CENSURE, n.

    1. The act of blaming or finding fault and condemning as wrong; applicable to the moral conduct, or to the works of men. When applied to persons, it is nearly equivalent to blame, reproof, reprehension, reprimand. It is an expression of disapprobation, which often implies reproof.
    2. Judicial sentence; judgment that condemns. An ecclesiastical censure is a sentence of condemnation, or penalty inflicted on a member of a church for mal-conduct, by which he is deprived of the communion of the church, or prohibited from executing the sacerdotal office.
    CENSURE, v.t.

    1. To find fault with and condemn as wrong; to blame; to express disapprobation of; as, to censure a man, or his manners, or his writings.

    We laugh at vanity, oftener than we censure pride.
    2. To condemn by a judicial sentence, as in ecclesiastical affairs.
    3. To estimate.
    CENSURE, v.i. To judge.

    From here: http://1828.mshaffer.com

  • Log:

    Remember: to that very degree we fail to honor our covenants, Satan has power over us, tempting us towards pride, self-righteousness, sin, and, finally, transgression. And for those who were once enlightened (read: baptized by fire), to sin willfully is unpardonable, says Paul (Hebrews 10:26).

    • EvenTheLeastSaint:

      Log, Are you referring to the covenant of consecration? I’m sure that the original intent was consecration to God not consecration to an organization. This would be consecration of one’s will (or strict obedience to every word received of the Lord), which covenant immediately precedes an audience…

      • Log:

        Log, Are you referring to the covenant of consecration? I’m sure that the original intent was consecration to God not consecration to an organization. This would be consecration of one’s will (or strict obedience to every word received of the Lord), which covenant immediately precedes an audience…

        Any of them, actually, including the charge. Whatever the original intent was, the form of the covenant we have entered into makes mention of the organization. But here is a thought problem – what do you lose by honoring your covenants as literally as possible, and with all your might, mind, and strength?

        Can you lose anything?

        What do you lose by not honoring your covenants as literally and completely as possible?

  • JR:

    Is a man “anointed”, i.e., sanctified, by receiving a church calling from another man?
    Is it “evil speaking” to speak the truth?
    JR

  • Log:

    In the post immediately prior to the one you lauded by LDSA, I gave the definition of the Lord’s anointed.

    When you impute impure motivations to a man, you have left the realm of truth speaking and have entered the realm of evil speaking by way of censure.

    There was a letter written by Bruce R. McConkie in response to Eugene England that I read many years ago. The statements that impressed me most upon reading, and what has stuck with me over the years as the proper course of conduct towards the Brethren, is this.

    It is not in your province to set in order the Church or to determine what is doctrines shall be. It is axiomatic among us to know that God has given apostles and prophets “for the edifying of the body of Christ,” and that their ministry is to see that “we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the slight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.” (Eph. 4:11-16.) This means, among other things, that it is my province to teach to the Church what the doctrine is. It is your province to echo what I say or to remain silent. You do not have a divine commission to correct me or any of the Brethren. The Lord does not operate that way. If I lead the Church astray, that is my responsibility, but the fact still remains that I am the one appointed with all the rest involved so to do. The appointment is not given to the faculty at Brigham Young University or to any of the members of the Church. The Lord’s house is a house of order and those who hold the keys are appointed to proclaim the doctrines.

    Now you know that this does not mean that individuals should not do research and make discoveries and write articles. What it does mean is that what they write should be faith promoting and where doctrines are concerned, should be in harmony with that which comes from the head of the Church. And those at the head of the Church have the obligation to teach that which is in harmony with the Standard Works. If they err then be silent on the point and leave the event in the hands of the Lord. Some day all of us will stand before the judgment bar and be accountable for our teachings.

    Whatever one may think of McConkie’s doctrinal stances, this counsel is true. It is simply the codification of sacrifice, the charge given, and consecration as it relates to our conduct towards the Brethren.

    When the Lord needs our help in correcting the course of the Ark of God, he will ask us directly, by the power of the Holy Ghost unmistakable, or he will come to us himself and so instruct us. But we rule out any such role for ourselves when we seek to steady the ark of our own accord and according to our own judgements.

    This is why I keep pleading with you all, who were once enlightened, to repent and cry mightily that you might be filled with light, love, and joy again, and be able to see clearly how to help the Lord, for in your purified state you will be qualified to be his servants again; if you don’t do this, you are unable to help.

    Please, be wise. Remember 1 Corinthians 13:1-3. Remember 2 Timothy 2:6. Remember D&C 4:5 and D&C 18:19. Each one of you who was once enlightened knows, or should know, what each of these verses mean.

  • Spektator:

    I think one needs to be careful on this matter. When McConkie responded to England’s work, he had not read it. According to anecdotal information, McConkie later expressed regret for his response.

    In the larger picture, I do not think we are to keep silent if we disagree with the ‘Brethren’ in all cases. If the prognostications in the scriptures are correct regarding the eventual apostasy of the church, which I believe to be clearly warned of in the scriptures, we have an obligation to warn our neighbors. I believe it is our right and responsibility to protect the truth and purity of the gospel over a man’s or a group of men’s priviledge to assert unrighteous dominion. I believe that the characterization of the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost or being born again as a process is indicative of the rejection of the fulness of the gospel as descrived in the Book of Mormon.

    When Christ was among the Nephites, he selected twelve to be ‘servants and ministers’ to the people, and carefully constrained their ‘rights’ as in the identification on only one who was authorized to administer the sacrament. I don’t see this attitude present at all in what McConkie wrote above. They were instructed to teach only that which they had been given from Christ.

    I do not automatically assume that because a man has been called to a high position in the church, he has been annointed. Many are called but few are chosen. We are also taught in Section 121 that most men are subject to pride and have their priesthood inoperable because of it. I don’t think anyone is exempt.

    If the church is still under condemnation, if those who are not apostles and prophets are yet to be identified, if our understanding of the fulness of the gospel is corrupted by the teachings of men, we are to ‘prove all things and hold fast to that which is good.

  • JR:

    What an awesome discussion! I must spend some time on my knees sorting this out for myself.
    My initial impression is to take a course to not judge. However, there is much to what Spek has said about standing for the truth, no matter the consequences, no matter who opposes.
    Thank you my brothers. This is such an important discussion it deserves very careful attention!
    JR

  • Jack:

    You put a lot of weight on that little linchpin: Process or event. Frankly I don’t believe the Kingdom stands or falls on that question. The most important thing is that the Holy Ghost is at work in the church; that its members are responding to the spirit and bearing its fruit. And the fruits of the spirit in the church is a witness that the Holy Ghost is operative in the church. And the Holy Ghost’s presence in the church is a sign that the church is not in apostasy. And the fact that dedicated members strive to follow the counsel of the brethren is further witness that said counsel leads them to be sensitive to the spirit, which causes them to bear the fruits of the spirit, which, in turn is a sign … yadda, yadda, ad infinitum.

  • Log:

    We have an obligation to warn our neighbors.

    And that warning, which we are called to give our neighbors, is to repent, not to point up the flaws of the Brethren. We do not even need to refer to the Brethren when preaching repentance! Just yesterday I encouraged my quorum to read the first few verses of Enos, testified that that was how we repent and come unto Christ. I wasn’t the teacher.

    Teach the truth and contend against no man. Testify of the truth as you know it, and pretend to no knowledge you don’t have.

    We hinder our neighbor’s repentance by censuring the Brethren. Do you not see this? I have already plainly explained how that is.

    If you, who were once enlightened, refuse to repent even though the way and the need has been sounded plainly in your ears, how shall them who know not the way, who trust in men and make flesh their arm, receive and obey?

  • Log:

    Lastly, beware pride and self-righteousness. Those are the two most sure tools Satan has for decoying and neutralizing those who know more than others, and those who are more intelligent than others, whose eyes were once opened to see more than other men. He goads us into seeking the flaws of others and building ourselves up at the expense of others, especially if those others have higher positions in the Church or in society than ourselves.

    It is a hard thing, to choose to overlook the errors and flaws we observe in our leaders, but if we do not this thing, the Lord shall not overlook our errors and flaws in the end, and in the now, we shall find we do not have the Spirit.

    Do you remember the perfect humility you had when you were freed from your sins? Do you remember being as a little child? Do you remember being perfectly pure? Do you remember being free to do whatsoever your heart desired? Do you remember what it is to be one with God and Christ? Do you remember how it was when all your prayers were answered instantly?

    Do you exist that way now?

  • Log:

    For any who care, I have put up a post on whether one can be baptized by fire and the Holy Ghost and notice nothing, and I also address the claim that it is, or can be, an imperceptible process lasting on the order of years.

    http://crymightily.blogspot.com/2013/03/and-they-knew-it-not.html

    This is all I have to say on the subject.

  • Spektator:

    Jack,
    I would suggest that the Lord is fairly particular about His ordinances. Look at what the Holy Roman Church did to the baptism of water. Does an infant, sprinkled on the forehead, receive the same benefit as immersion? Do you think the Lord would be pleased if we stray from the ordinance of baptism of fire, especially when it is central to the gospel (DandC 33:11-12)?

    I would be interested in what you consider as fruits of the sprit. I assume you mean the good that people do within their communities. If that is the case, I see little difference between the ‘fruit’ of the LDS church and many other organizations who love and care for one another. I have no doubt that an honest seeker in any circumstance will fill the spirit according to their faithfulness, that does not necessarily mean the organization is the beneficiary. These works, such as are ‘required’ of the members, are largely the works of men, as cited in 3 Nephi 27:10-11.

    And if it so be that the church is built upon my gospel then will the Father show forth his own works in it.
    But if it be not built upon my gospel, and is built upon the works of men, or upon the works of the devil, verily I say unto you they have joy in their works for a season, and by and by the end cometh, and they are hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence there is no return.

    What should set the Church of Jesus Christ apart? I believe it should be the works of God as described in 3 Nephi 26:15.

  • Log:

    Spektator,

    But if you aren’t doing the works of Christ yourself (John 14:12, 3 Nephi 27:13-21), does that not mean you are not of his Church either (D&C 10:67)?

    Or are you aware of any other organized Church that the Lord owns (D&C 115:4) in which these things are to be found to your satisfaction?

    Why is it nobody is willing to accept the responsibility to be the workers of miracles and the teachers of righteousness who make mention of perceiving a lack thereof in the Church? And it seems particularly frustrating when the ones making mention also claim to know the way to become such, and don’t do it!

  • Spektator:

    Log,
    First, I would consider who Christ was speaking to in both your works references. In John 14, He is talking to the twelve at passover. In 3 Nephi, chapter 27, He is speaking again to the twelve disciples. In verse 21, Christ states:

    …and ye know the things that ye must do in my church; for the works which ye have seen me do that shall ye also do; for that which ye have seen me do even that shall ye do;

    He is telling the twelve selected among the Nephites that they are to demonstrate the works of God. And they did as we read in 4 Nephi, verse 5:

    And there were great and marvelous works wrought by the disciples of Jesus, insomuch that they did heal the sick, and raise the dead, and cause the lame to walk, and the blind to receive their sight, and the deaf to hear; and all manner of miracles did they work among the children of men; and in nothing did they work miracles save it were in the name of Jesus.

    Do I expect you and I to exhibit the works of God, only as far as our faith allows. Do I expect the men who received the comission in the verses you quoted to exhibit the works of God? Yes, I would expect to see those works demonstrated broadly by His chosen twelve in His church just as they were demonstrated among the Nephites.

    You put much on the shoulders of the general authorities in terms of obedience, yet you do not expect them to meet the expectations found in the scriptures? Why is that? The first action of Peter after he was baptized with fire was to heal a lame man. The twelve in both Jerusalem and among the Nephites were told to demonstrate the works of God. Is it not the twelve who are supposed to be the workers of miracles and the teachers of righteousness?

  • Jack:

    Spektator,

    The Lord is very clear as to how the ordinance of baptism by water must be performed. But with regard to spiritual baptism the only description the Lord gives is this:

    “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”

    The only definitive element in this statement with regard to exactly how the “ordinance” of spiritual baptism is to be performed is that we know that *something* is happening.

  • Jack:

    Spektator, my last comment is a response to something you said earlier — just to be clear.

  • Log:

    John 14:12 is a general statement: whoever believes on Christ shall do his works, and greater than what he did. That promise is not limited to the Twelve, and by it I judge any who complain against the Twelve.

    I had considered those complaints when I composed this post: http://crymightily.blogspot.com/2013/02/some-thoughts-on-prayer.html

    I put much on obedience to the Brethren because one cannot honor one’s covenants in rebellion against them, and I am trying to be my brother’s keeper – you are my brother.

    As for the Brethren working mighty works, I remember Matt 13:58, when even Jesus could do no mighty works because of the unbelief of them whom he was among. Are you sure there are not mighty works being done? It is asserted much but not substantiated; granted, it is hard to substantiate a lack of works. And if there are not, might it not be because of the unbelief of the people, and not so much the lack of power by the Twelve? Remember, even the unconverted apostles worked miracles, yet some things were beyond their power and faith.

    And, ideally, yes, the Twelve ought to be teachers of righteousness and workers of miracles. But that does not excuse you from being a teacher of righteousness and a worker of miracles, and the more so because you have been anointed.

    Incidentally, I have never heard one of the Twelve justifying wickedness nor leading men into sin.

    • QB:

      Breaking covenants
      Anyone who has ever been to the temple has broken temple covenants by revealing everyday the name of the first token of the Aaronic priesthood, we all have to go much much deeper boys, if any of you remember the penalties for revealing the name of the first token, now if its that serious, why is it we have no problem breaking those covenants, and why is it that we are tricked into making covenants we cant possibly keep, the answer sits below the symbol, oh and by the way I’m just chucking a hand grenade to stimulate thinking and more importantly pondering,not contention I would share more with you but I’m picking up that you’re not ready to be excommunicated just yet, we all want to wait till all the lights are green before we move (to answer an unasked question I am in full fellowship my knowledge if revealed would get me kicked out so fast)…

      • Log:

        As I recall, we covenant never to reveal the token with its accompanying name and sign. All three must not be revealed together. Therefore, by mentioning the name, free from its temple context and not in conjunction with the token and sign, I break no covenant.

        So I can speak of the Gospel of John, let’s say, and not be in violation of the oath.

      • boo:

        While I agree with Log’s comment about breaking that particular covenant your point is generally valid, i think the sacramental prayer on the bread is only one of many examples where we are lead to make covenants we will surely break, We covenant that we ware willing to “always remember him and keep his commandments” and yet within hours we will certainly break some commandment. Likewise none of us can keep all of the covenants we make in the temple always. I think this is all intentional to bring us to an awareness of our fallen and sinful condition and hopefully that knowledge moves us to came to Christ to avail us of the atonement. Thanks for your thoughts

      • Log:

        Boo, the whole point of my blog is to help you come unto Christ that you may be in a position – a fit state – to keep all your covenants, and every commandment of God. It is possible to be perfect through the Atonement if you are willing to do what it takes. It only takes forsaking all things for Christ.

  • JR:

    Log,
    OK, I understand that you are fully set on protecting and defending the Brethren because of your convenent in the Temple against evil speaking of the Lord’s anointed.
    I have no problem with laying hold on all that is good within the church and with cutting leaders a bunch of slack in the spirit of charity and not judging.
    I freely admit that the church is the only organization on earth today with authority to perform the saving ordinances of baptism and laying on of hands for the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
    The church does much good in publishing the scriptures and building ward and stake buildings for the LDS people to gather.
    Having said all that, and acknowledging that I am far from perfect, my take on BFHG is that it is a conditional sanctification, provided one does as counseled by King Benjamin UNTIL they receive the unconditional sanctification thru reception of the Calling and Election. That is the “gate” spoken of by Nephi (2Nep31). Sanctification is clearly brought about by the power of the Holy Ghost, but adhering to the strait and narrow is part of that process, and that takes time. Past that point, I suspect a person could still sin innocently and call upon the Lord in repentance but I am not to that point in my personal journey and cannot testify to the truth of that suspicion.
    I will tell you this though, the Spirit has testified to me personally that the church is either already in, or is definitely headed into, serious apostasy from the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Take it or leave it but the Book of Mormon testifies from beginning to end that apostasy will occur in the “last days” and we are definitely in the “last days”.
    Yes, I have performed miracles. Yes, I have repented of all my sins and received confirmation that they have been forgiven. Yes, I have also been told by the Spirit that it is still possible to sin, even after receiving the BFHG and to receive remission of those sins via ongoing repentance and calling on the Savior for forgiveness.
    I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love the Savior. I love the Truth. I love the church and the people in the church inasmuch as they are striving to find and live the truth. However, I cannot uphold error and apostasy which in my sincere belief are present in the church today.
    Speaking the truth is NOT “evil speaking of the Lord’s anointed” and I do not believe I have ever named anyone in the church in any form of evil speaking of any type.
    I do not wish to raise contention or anger or hard feelings. Just presenting what the Spirit has witnessed to me.
    JR

  • Log:

    JR,

    I am not ignorant of the prophecies; the difference between us may simply be the degree of fidelity with which we adhere to our respective covenants: I am an absolutist, and a literalist. But where have I upheld error? If you read what I have written carefully, you can discern exactly what I think.

    I simply shall not sit in the accuser’s seat, and I will warn against others from doing so. As my covenants name The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, so I honor them and it.

    If I may speak even more plainly (than I already do), I cannot figure out why someone believes it is more functional to point out the errors of the Brethren rather than repenting and coming unto Christ with full purpose of heart and receiving power in the priesthood and from thence doing whatever needs to be doing with the blessings and counsel of God. Don’t you think he would put you in the Twelve, or make you the prophet, if you were true and faithful in all things, abiding in your covenants as literally and as exactly as possible?

    On the other hand, if you do not do these things… how can you help?

    The one mighty and strong we look for, do you not think he will be called through the normal channels? I think he will be. I think he will cause divisions among the brethren because he will speak the truth in purity and plainness, without regard to man nor rank nor position, and there will be a sifting of the people by his doctrines, with God slaying them who arrogate to themselves the task of correcting his doctrines and teachings, and the dividing line will be … well. I have my theories. But do you think he will be one who points up the errors of the brethren? I rather think he will have charity and thus he will not mention their errors, because he will be pure and perfect before God, walking in all his ordinances blameless, and be filled with light as of the sun in his heart, and be a true seer.

    In the meantime, I lose nothing by honoring my covenants with exactness – and the Lord blesses me for so doing. I encourage all to do the same.

  • JR:

    Thanks Log. I believe the Elias, AKA the One Mighty and Strong, will NOT come thru the regular authorities of the church. In the meridian of time John The Baptist did not come thru the line of church authorities. This is certainly a matter of conjecture at this point.

    In the matter of the Elias causing a division within the church, doesn’t that speak to there being serious error residing within part of the leadership of the church if they will not recognize him and recognize his authority?

    To answer your hypothetical question, I do not think the Lord would put me in a leadership position in the church under any circumstances. I do not qualify because I have not punched all the tickets and checked all the boxes required. Would I want such a position? Not on your life! They carry a very heavy burden of administrative responsibility that I would never wish on anyone. Also, I believe D&C 112:24-26 tells us what is soon to happen to at least some of those brethren who do not live up to their high and holy calling and I would not want to be in their shoes!

    I think we view the word covenant differently. To me it is a 2 party agreement where each party
    agrees to do certain things. In the case of the Law of Consecration: We agree to consecrate everything we have or will have to the church, FOR THE BUILDING UP OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD UPON THE EARTH AND FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ZION; and the Lord agrees to do certain things if we live up to our part of the bargain.

    However, what if the church is not building up the Kingdom of God upon the earth but instead builds up the kingdom of babylon? What if the church is ignoring its charge to establish Zion?
    Are we still obligated to the Lord to uphold our part of the bargain? One could say “I will do as I have covenanted regardless and let the Lord sort it out.” One could also say, “my consecrated resources are being misused and I do not like where they are being allocated, Lord would you please show me where I can redirect my resources to achieve what You want done?

    One is saying, “I will support the Brethren, no matter what they tell me to do right or wrong and let the Lord sort it out”. The other is saying, “Lord, I will not follow any man that I perceive to be in error, I will follow the Spirit. Please direct my feet as thou wouldst have me proceed.”

    Just my take on these issues. We have certainly drifted far off the topic. I will say no more on these matters.
    JR

  • Log:

    Jack,

    If you don’t mind, I shall speak very plainly.

    Anytime we find ourselves saying “I am right in that which I do because…”, we’re wrong. The true course requires no justification.

    • Jack:

      Log,

      Not sure where that came from. But even so, as Spektator’s blog is all about interpreting the scriptures correctly I think it no sin to throw in my own two cents on how we read them.

  • JR:

    OK, one more and then I do quit.
    If we follow after any man or doctrine that we know is in error, (how can we know this?) we partake of the sin as though we had created it. This is one meaning of the term “those who love and make a lie”.
    If we know a man or a doctrine is incorrect we are bound to stand for the truth regardless of the consequences, anything less is cowardice.
    It is time for the sons of God to stand up for the truth and stop being afraid.
    JR

  • Log:

    JR,

    I follow no man, and I receive no man’s word for doctrine save the Lord shows me is is correct. I have been counseled of God to obey the Brethren.

    Have you not read?

    1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,

    2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat:

    3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.

    I teach the truth in my family, my quorums, and from the pulpit. I don’t need to refer to the Brethren to make my points, and I need no man to teach me. I know whereof I speak because I obey the truth.

    When the Lord wants me to do more, I will do more. Until then I say nothing but repentance and faith on the Savior and remission of sins by water and by fire, yea, even the Holy Ghost.

    Does it not occur to you that the things you observe to be wrong are tests of your integrity and loyalty?

    Have you observed me to uphold error?

    • The JST says the following:

      1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, saying, The Scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat.

      2 All, therefore, whatsoever they bid you observe, they will make you observe and do; for they are ministers of the law, and they make themselves your judges. But do not ye after their works; for they say, and do not.

    • Jack:

      What a fun bit of proof texting. Do the brethren bear no resemblance at all to the twelve and the seventy whom the Lord called when he was on the earth? If so, would his counsel be the same regarding them? That we should do what they say but not as they do?

      • log:

        Yes, there is a point of similarity between the former and at least some of the current, but I will not explain what it is. Instead, I will simply point out how often Christ corrected them whom he called in his ministry. It was a rather common occurrence (see for example, Matt 19:13-15, and Luke 9:51-56). I will also point out that one whom He called was he who betrayed Him.

  • Log:

    You know, it is interesting that you name him who is to come Elias, the forerunner of the Lord, who makes straight His paths. I am chewing through Luke right now, and read this.

    76 And thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways;

    77 To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins,

    78 Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us,

    79 To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.

    His mission is verse 77.

    John had authority through his father, via the Levitical line. He held acknowledged authority within the Jewish priesthood by lineage, so the Pharisees and priests were obligated to seek him out in the wilderness for his baptism by their own law.

    The one who shall set the Lord’s house in order (D&C 85:7) shall come likewise in the acknowledged way, duly called from among the people of the Church, otherwise he would be rejected by the very people he came to save, because they have been diligently taught that the Lord’s house is a house of order.

    And they who oppose him, even though they have been duly called and appointed to rule in the house of the Lord, shall be slain by God (D&C 85:8).

    I believe he will come immediately prior to the coming of the Lord. Interesting times, they be a coming.

  • Log:

    Actually, the whole thing is his mission… but to me, verse 77 is the crux of it.

    • EvenTheLeastSaint:

      Log, see D&C 77:9,14 if you would like to know who the Elias of the last days is according to Joseph Smith.

      • Log:

        The scriptures do not equate the one mighty and strong (D&C 85:7-8) with Elias, to my knowledge. It was an interesting thought while it lasted, though… thanks for the references.

    • EvenTheLeastSaint:

      …And what his (Elias’) mission is. “If you will receive it” as verse nine advises, and really search the scriptures and maybe “the Words of Joseph Smith” it can get deep in a hurry.

  • Log:

    Well, an angel would also fit the description better than a man, though…

    • Log:

      … except what fool would oppose an angel?

    • EvenTheLeastSaint:

      Translated beings don’t usually appear in glory but can appear as any normal man dressed in the comman apparral of the day. You may have already seen and even talked to one or two and never realized it, maybe at church, in the temple or even a bum on the street testing your charity (3 Ne 20:7). But they can also be clothed in glory (D&C 7:6; 85:7). They gather and ordain the 144,000 (D&C 77:11). John will minister to the heirs of salvation on the Earth (D&C 7:6). John will prophesy again before nations (Rev 10:11; D&C 7:3). He’s commissioned to build the Jerusalem temple (Rev 11:2). There are many that we know not of (D&C 42:10)….

  • EvenTheLeastSaint:

    Log:
    March 7, 2013 at 1:55 am

    The scriptures do not equate the one mighty and strong (D&C 85:7-8) with Elias, to my knowledge. It was an interesting thought while it lasted, though… thanks for the references.

    With some reasonable assumptions a connection can be made. From D&C 77:14 John has a mission and an ordinance of restoring the tribes of Israel to their lands. the OMnS has the task “to arrange by lot the inheritances of the saints”. Does this fall under restoring the tribes of Israel to their lands? Both John and the OMnS are clothed in glory (D&C 7:6; 85:7). Finally it just stands to reason that “this Elias which was to come to gather together the tribes of Israel and restore all things” would be in charge of putting the House of God in order while he’s at it.

    • Log:

      It’s possible, but not assertible without more information or revelation. Right now… it’s just suppositions.

      And the “interesting thought while it lasted” was my supposing he, the OM&S, should be a man called to lead in the Church. As a matter of fact, it does make more sense that he would be an angel, for that would render as literal what I was taking as figurative. I just don’t know that this OM&S, who is likely an angel, if he is an angel, is the angel who is Elias. But yes, it is definitely possible.

      I choose to shut up about it because I don’t know what I am talking about.

      • Log:

        … sigh, I really, really liked the notion of a man called up from the ranks and speaking the truth in plainness and purity and beginning a great winnowing of the people thereby. Maybe it will happen anyways…

        Because I really, really dislike the notion that some things should be transfigured so as to assuage the egos of them who will not repent of all their sins and call upon the name of the Lord.

      • Log:

        … because that is to justify men in their sins, literally.

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