Posts Tagged ‘ LDS ’

Seventies and Apologetics

September 8, 2004 | 18 comments

I’m not really an apologist (if you want real apologetics, try Jeff Lindsay or Ben Spackman or Dan Peterson), but I just had a short, humorous, quasi-apologetic thought. I’ve seen a claim that the Book of Mormon can’t be true because it requires too many people. I believe the numbers used are generally those from Mormon 6: And we also beheld the ten thousand of my people who were led by my son Moroni. And behold, the ten thousand of Gidgiddonah had fallen, and he also in the midst. And Lamah had fallen with his ten thousand; and Gilgal... Read more »

Back to Primary

September 7, 2004 | 33 comments

When we moved to Jonesboro, I found myself called into the elder’s quorum presidency, which is the first time I’ve ever served in any kind of executive capacity in the church. (Being a district leader in the mission doesn’t count.) I served with two elder’s quorum presidents, and found myself seeing church service, and the economics and politics of running a ward, from what was for me an entirely new and somewhat fascinating angle. But all experiences must come to an end, and when our elder’s quorum president was called into the just-reconstituted bishopric, I was released. After floating... Read more »

Sunday School Lesson 34

September 4, 2004 | 2 comments

Lesson 34: Helaman 6-12 Chapter 6 Verse 3: How does the attitude of the members of the Church compare here with Moroni’s attitude? Verse 9: As soon as we read that the Nephites and Lamanites “became exceedingly richâ€? what do we expect to read about soon? Verse 17: Why do they want gain? What does it mean to be lifted up above another? What’s wrong with it? How do we lift ourselves above others? Verse 27: Why is the comparison of the Gadianton robbers to Cain an important one for us? What does it tell us? Verse 30: What... Read more »

Protected: 12 Questions Schedule

September 1, 2004 | no comments

There is no excerpt because this is a protected post. Read more »

Technical Update: Still Not 100%

September 1, 2004 | 22 comments

Hi everyone, here’s the scoop – Things are back to _looking_ more or less normal. However, rebuilding is still on the blink (and I’m still not sure why). Comments will eventually show up, but you’ll get a 500 error, until I figure out what’s going on. Read more »

Sheri Dew at the Republican Convention

August 31, 2004 | 166 comments

As many of us know, Sheri Dew was selected to give the invocation at the Republican National Convention. The prayer she gave, as transcribed, was rather simple and probably uncontroversial: Heavenly Father, we come before Thee as citizens who care about this nation to express our gratitude for this land of liberty where we have the freedom to live, vote, and worship as we choose. We are grateful for the evidence of Thy hand in the founding of this nation. We are grateful for every man and woman in uniform, and ask Thee to bless them and their families.... Read more »

The Spirit of Elijah and the Victorian Family

August 30, 2004 | 34 comments

Priesthood and Relief Society met together yesterday for a fairly exciting family history discussion/call to arms/how-to. We quoted Malachi, of course: Elijah the prophet . . . shall turn the heart of fathers to their children, and the heart of the children to their fathers . . . . We affirmed that this means more than templework. We agreed that temple work is key but that the spirit of Elijah includes learning to love ancestors by learning about their lives. Someone mentioned the widening in genealogical interest post-1836 as evidence of the spirit of Elijah. A brother mentioned the... Read more »

What “Evidences” Really Matter in a Testimony?

August 30, 2004 | 9 comments

A question: what “evidences” might actually matter in obtaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon or of the Restoration? Is the issue one that we (the Church, “on the average”) emphasize too much or not enough? Background: Latter-day Saints rightly emphasize the importance of revelation in gaining knowledge and faith about the things of God. This can exasperate some critics, who wish that we would collapse under the weight of their alleged “evidence” that the Church is false and abandon our testimonies. They may attribute our stubborn persistence in the faith as a sign of lemming-like ignorance and... Read more »

Precious Assurance of God’s Fairness: Baptism for the Dead

August 30, 2004 | 5 comments

A number of years ago I participated in a science and religion mail list with a group of scientists who were also Christians. It was there where I came to appreciate the faith of scientists of other religions who are able reconcile their faith (esp. Genesis) with modern science. I think everyone in the group accepted the finding that the earth is old, and so forth, often in ways that were remarkably compatible with what James Talmage taught in his landmark sermon, “The Earth and Man.” BTW, that speech is especially important because, as Michael Ash points out, it... Read more »

Baptism and the Unworthy Vessel

August 29, 2004 | 3 comments

Last Sunday, I confirmed our oldest daughter, Megan Elaine Fox, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her baptism, performed by me, had taken place the day before. It went pretty smoothly, aside from the fact that I forgot to bring my white clothes to the church, and had to rush home and back again at the last minute, desperately afraid that the car (whose gas gauge light was flashing “low fuel” the whole time) was going to stall at some intersection, and I would end up running a couple of miles, white pant legs... Read more »

Bush-League Political Commentary

August 29, 2004 | 46 comments

If Bush is a warmonger and Kerry is a flip-flopper, what is an LDS voter to do? Bo Gritz is nowhere to be found, and Cody Judy is out of the question. Alas, it is probably too late for Gordon B. Hinckley to mount a Joseph-Smith style LDS-prophet-for-president campaign. Thus, it’s clear that the only principled thing to do is . . . vote for Jim Faulconer as President! But for those who think that they must remain within the traditional Republican – Democrat dichotomy, there are some interesting goings-on in the political quarters of the bloggernacle. To wit,... Read more »

Sunday School Lesson 33

August 28, 2004 | one comment

I’m back from a couple of weeks during which the internet wasn’t accessible–altogether, a very nice experience. This is the lesson that I will be teaching tomorrow, and I will try to get next week’s lesson out early in the week. Lesson 33: Helaman 1-5 Chapter 1 Verses 7-8: How do we understand a righteous person like Pahoran the elder having a child who was so unrighteous? For what did the Nephites condemn Paanchi to death? Why was his crime so terrible that it deserved death? Read more »

12 Questions for Rodney Smith, part two

August 27, 2004 | 3 comments

Here is the second half of President Smith’s responses to your questions (for part one, click here). We thank him for his participation and extend our best wishes to both him and Southern Virginia University. 7. If the Church offered to take over SVU and turn it into BYU-Virginia, would the trustees go for it? Or does the institution value its independence from the Church and wish to maintain that independence? Read more »

12 Questions for Rodney Smith, part one

August 25, 2004 | 4 comments

We are pleased to present the first half of our 12 Questions for President Rodney Smith of Southern Virginia University (for part two, click here). For more information on President Smith and SVU, click here. 1. What were the driving forces behind the creation of SVU? Truthfully, SVU was created as a matter of inspiration, not to the church or its leaders but to a few very able and faithful members of the church, who saw the need for a university in the LDS tradition in the East. I encourage you to visit campus and you will come to... Read more »

Countering Pornography

August 25, 2004 | 47 comments

My impression is that pornography is a widespread problem among members of the Church. While women sometimes fall prey to its enticements, the overwhelming majority of pornography consumers are men. The perils of pornography are of particular concern for those who work with the young men, but many Elders and High Priests also suffer from a so-called “pornography addiction.” As I have encountered members of the Church who are dealing with this problem — whether as Church leaders or as parents — one thing has become depressingly clear: we are not very effective at countering the magnetic force of... Read more »

Mental Health in the Church: Suggestions for Leaders

August 23, 2004 | 31 comments

Before my time as guest blogger expires (thanks, Kaimi, for the opportunity!), there’s a serious issue that I’d like to raise, especially for you who are or who will be leaders in the Church. The issue is mental illness. Very few of us have had any training in recognizing and dealing with mental illness, but there is a great need. I would especially urge bishoprics, Relief Society presidents, and other leaders to learn about mental illness and look for its symptoms. Stake leaders, it may be helpful to provide more training abvout mental from competent sources for your leaders... Read more »

Let God Judge between Me and Thee

August 23, 2004 | 11 comments

Nephi cast lots to determine God’s will. Bruce R. McConkie famously suggested we do the same. I must have had those two in mind when I read a puzzling description of Captain Moroni’s first Lamanite campaign. The Lamanites were sneaking around through the wilderness. Moroni tracked them: And he also knowing that it was the only desire of the Nephites to preserve their lands, and their liberty, and their church, therefore he thought it no sin that he should defend them by stratagem; therefore, he found by his spies which course the Lamanites were to take . . .... Read more »

Are you embarrassed?

August 23, 2004 | 23 comments

Many of you have heard about the latest sex scandal associated with BYU’s football program. For those who haven’t, four members of the football team are being investigated in connection with the following events: The 17 year old told detectives she met the men at the mall on Sunday August 8th, and willingly went to their off campus apartment. Inside she claims she was accepted their offer to drink vodka, a pornographic DVD was playing on a TV, and that she later passed out and awoke to find herself undressed. She says she was raped by three or four... Read more »

Careers for Bloggers

August 23, 2004 | 19 comments

I’m struck by the similarities in careers of so many bloggernackers (and probably bloggers in general). In fact, outside of four major groups, it’s fairly hard to think of others. The major categories are: The lawyers: Myself, Nate, Adam, Greg, Matt(?), Steve Evans, Aaron Brown, Dave Underhill, etc. The professors or students: Russell, Jim, Gordon, Adam when this blog started, Logan, Bob(?), Ben Huff, Ben Spackman, Melissa Proctor, Taylor Petrey, etc. The stay at home mothers: Kristine, Julie The techies: Clark Goble, Grasshopper, Eric Stone, Kim Siever That seems to largely cover it. Where are the doctors? The accountants?... Read more »

How the Other Half Lives

August 22, 2004 | 2 comments

The only place online (besides T & S, of course) where I hang out is a message board for homeschoolers. The place is fascinating to me because it overcomes one of the biggest (in my opinion) disadvantages of Internet life: people with widely varying viewpoints are talking to each other over there. We all school the same way, but in addition to your evangelical Christians, we have every other flavor of Christians, non-religious types, Jews, Muslims, pagans, etc. Read more »

That Darn Political Neutrality Statement: Now What Am I Supposed to Do?

August 21, 2004 | 125 comments

Last Sunday morning, I was just starting to feel comfortable with the presidential election, having carefully completed my “lesser of two evils” analysis to make my decision about which of the two leading Skull and Bones members I wanted for President. And then during sacrament meeting, the bishop got up and read the Church’s political neutrality statement. It said something about not endorsing any party or candidate – sure, I was OK with that – and THEN came the catch: it said we were under a “special obligation” to seek out and uphold “leaders who will act with integrity... Read more »

Religious Implications of the Placebo Effect

August 20, 2004 | 18 comments

Abstract: Physicians frequently consider the placebo effect in evaluating the efficacy of medical treatments on the human body. It may also be wise to consider the placebo effect and its organizational and psychological analog, the Hawthorne effect, in religious treatments of humans. In suggesting that the placebo effect be considered as a factor in treatments such as LDS Priesthood blessings or declarations of forgiveness or salvation in a variety of faiths, the divine power behind such treatments is not necessarily challenged. The placebo effect, in religious terms, is not a sign of weakness in the patient or a tool... Read more »

The Lord’s Baseball Team

August 19, 2004 | 38 comments

I’ve always thought that one of the more fun and personal conference talks in recent years is Elder Wirthlin’s story about playing football against Whizzer White. Inspired by that story (and by the misery that acompanies focusing on baseball reality at present, given the current status of my Diamondbacks), I pondered this question: If the Lord fielded a baseball all-star team, composed of past and present great church leaders, who might be on it? (We’ll focus this on church leaders, so real athletes like Dale Murphy and Todd Heap are off the list). Here are some thoughts: First base:... Read more »

Scouting v. Personal Progress

August 19, 2004 | 183 comments

My son — with significant prodding from his mother — has been an inspired Boy Scout, and he just completed his Eagle Project. Actually, this is not unusual in our neck of the woods, as almost all of the young men in our ward attain the rank of Eagle. Having missed the scouting experience myself, I have been amazed at how much he has learned through the scouting program. Indeed, I was so impressed with the program that I recently offered my 16-year-old daughter a deal: fulfill all of the requirements for Eagle Scout (slightly amended to meet her... Read more »


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