Iron Rod 074 – Alma 1-6
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Alma confronts Nehor and Amlici, fending of both spiritual and political threats. Then he delivers his great discourse to the people of Zarahemla, where in he asks, “Have you been spiritually born of God?”

Moses 4:1-4

D&C 76:40-44

Luke 12:32

1 Nephi 2:23

Ezekiel 36:26

Mosiah 5:2

Helaman 15:7

Matthew 7:30-33

1 Nephi 22:22

D&C 10:55

Alma 9:27

Lamentations 5:5

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22 comments on “Iron Rod 074 – Alma 1-6

  1. It really is amazing how far off base we are as a people. And my whole life I have wondered how we came to believe all the utter crap that we do. I was born in Utah but my parents moved a few months later, so I didn’t come back to Utah till I was almost 10, so starting in 4th grade. So maybe living in states where mormons were the minority and then moving to Orem gave me the ability to see how ridiculous the bubble in happy valley actually is. Anyways two stories from high school I think will suffice to illustrate my point. I remember when I was a priest we went to the local republican meeting for citizenship in the community merit badge I think, and the whole meeting was filled with my former bishops and other ward leaders, and I remember being in absolute shock at the blasphemy I heard at that meeting. Literally my former bishop stood up at the beginning of the meeting and bore his testimony of how thankful he was that God had given us the great republican party to guide our great nation. Immediately a sense of shock and horror filled me. I was 16, by far one of the youngest people in the room, and I looked around to see if anyone besides me was in shock at his words. I couldn’t see anybody who thought anything was wrong with his statement. Because God definitely has a political party because He needs one. Still to this day I look back on that experience as one of the key moments that opened my eyes to our apostasy.

    The second story that has always stayed with me was I think the same school year, and I remember at Orem High in some history class or something where we just discussed the news or random stories, some girl in the class went on a rant about how mormons are a bunch of judgemental hypocrites. Her family had been ostracized by their former “friends” and ward members, because her brother had been excommunicated or disfellowshipped for looking at porn. She said people who used to visit them and say hi, etc., started avoiding them and treated the whole family like untouchables. So the whole family stopped going to church. I remember being filled with rage when I heard her story, it still makes me angry thinking about it. Because you know Jesus said to avoid the publicans and sinners and only associate with the white and delightsome.

    Finally I wanted to point out an instance of how hilariously bad our scriptural literacy as a people has become. I remember learning as a kid that line upon line precept upon precept is how revelation works! The JST of Isaiah 28:13 is good, but I like the net translation so I’ll quote it here: “So the LORD’s word to them will sound like meaningless gibberish, senseless babbling, a syllable here, a syllable there. As a result, they will fall on their backsides when they try to walk, and be injured, ensnared, and captured.” I really like how this translation perfectly sums up how mormons view the scriptures. They really are closed books to them.

  2. Roy Moore May 5, 2020

    Guys … I’m stunned that you glossed over a very important Heavenly Teaching spoken by a ‘real prophet’ (Alma the 2nd) in chapter 5. Alma (the 2nd) reminded the people of Zarahemla how the Lord had sent Abinidi to King Noah and his people (all being Nephites, a/k/a baptized members) to condemn their wickedness and command them to repent, which led Alma (the 1st) to repent and pass on what Abinidi taught to others at the Waters of Mormon, thus provoking Alma (the 1st) to ‘re-baptize’ hundreds of repentant ‘members’. We must conclude that among the many Heavenly Teachings Abinidi proclaimed before sealing those teachings with his blood, ‘repentance from sin ONLY comes through the ordinance of BAPTISM’ was one of them.

    In chapter 5, we have Alma (the 2nd) teaching some of the same people who were ‘re-baptized’ at the Waters of Mormon that, because of sin, they must be baptized again (Alma 5: 62) “I speak by way of command UNTO YOU THAT BELONG TO THE CHURCH; and unto those who do not belong to the church I speak by way of invitation, saying: COME AND BE BAPTIZED UNTO REPENTANCE, that ye also may be partakers of the fruit of the tree of life”.

    When you opine on Alma 7 next week, you should see that the ‘righteous’ (yet imperfect) people of Gideon are also commanded by Alma (the 2nd) to invoke the same ordinance of repentance by way of baptism (or re-baptism);

    14 Now I say unto you that ye must repent, and be born again; for the Spirit saith if ye are not born again ye cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven; therefore come and be baptized unto repentance, that ye may be washed from your sins, that ye may have faith on the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world, who is mighty to save and to cleanse from all unrighteousness.

    15 Yea, I say unto you come and fear not, and lay aside every sin, which easily doth beset you, which doth bind you down to destruction, yea, come and go forth, and show unto your God that ye are willing to repent of your sins and enter into a covenant with him to keep his commandments, and witness it unto him this day by going into the waters of baptism.

    You and I know that partaking of the Sacramental Emblems does not promise the remission of sins. All churches, including The CJCLDS INC. have this wrong. A person confesses a sin to the bishop and is placed on disciplinary status and admonished NOT to partake of the Sacramental Emblems; once the disciplinary status is rescinded following proper abstinence of the ‘sin’, how was the ‘sin’ remitted? The answer resides within Alma 5 and 7.

    • Roy, I think you are reading into Alma 5 a lot of things that aren’t in the text, thereby coming to a conclusion that isn’t supported by the text.

      First of all, by asserting that people at the waters of Mormon were rebaptized, you assume that the people in the kingdom of king Noah had access to authorized baptism. Are you suggesting that the priests of Noah had authority from God to baptize? Do you have a scripture upon which you base that assumption?

      The people of king Noah became the people of king Limhi, who wanted to get baptized yet had no one who could administer baptism to them until everyone was back in Zarahemla and Alma performed the baptisms. If there were authorized baptizers under king Noah, what happened to them when Limhi became king? Alma had been a priest of Noah, yet when he was at the waters of Mormon he had to ask God for authority to baptize. If he was a priest of Noah who already had the authority to baptize, why would he need to get authority all over again? If the priests consecrated by Noah had authority to baptize, why didn’t Limhi consecrate new priests to baptize? Did king Noah have more authority from God than king Limhi to consecrate priests?

      You introduce this quote, “repentance from sin only comes through the ordinance of baptism” and assign it to a teaching of Abinadi. Abinadi never mentions baptism in the scriptural account. Where is your source for this? How do you explain Alma the Younger going into his spiritual coma as a “very wicked and idolatrous man” who had “led astray the people of the Lord contrary to the commandments of God”, was “rebelling against God” and “had murdered many of his children, or rather led them away unto destruction”, and yet coming out of that coma declaring “I have repented of my sins and have been redeemed of the Lord, behold, I am born of the Spirit”? There was no baptism involved there. That seems to violate the logic of your assertion.

      In Alma 5:61 we read, “And now, I, Alma, do command you in the language of him who has commanded me, that ye do observe to do the words which I have spoken unto you. I speak by way of command unto you that belong to the church.” Nowhere in the previous words which he had spoken does he say anything about the need for the believers to be rebaptized. The only mention of baptism at all up to this command is a reference to his father baptizing at the waters of Mormon when he began to establish the church. If the people are to observe the words which Alma has spoken unto them, baptism is not part of that commandment.

      In Alma 5:62, he shifts the audience, “And unto those who do not belong to the church I speak by way of invitation, saying: Come and be baptized unto repentance, that ye ALSO may be partakers of the fruit of the tree of life.” This is a separate audience with separate instructions, with the promise that they ALSO can be partakers of the fruit of the tree of life. Who are the others partakers of the fruit of the tree of life that they would be joining? The only other group he has talked about are existing members, who in 5:33-34 are told to repent and come unto Christ in order to partake of the fruit of the tree of life.

      Alma 7 does talk more explicitly about baptism, and when we get there we will discuss it. But I don’t see any scriptural basis for the concepts you are trying to link to Alma 5. This feels like the guy with the hammer seeing everything as a nail.

      • Roy Moore May 5, 2020

        MD,
        Because Alma (1st) taught what Abinidi delivered to King Noah, baptism for the remission of sins must have been known to the people of Noah’s kingdom; but they may have substituted something else or ceased practicing it altogether. However it happened, Abinidi was sent by a loving God to straighten them out.

        Yes, Alma (1st) was a priest under King Noah, albeit a self professed wicked person. King Noah was probably advancing things along the lines of Nehor (Alma 1), for which Nehor was executed. Interesting that Nehor murdered Gideon, who’s the namesake of the community of people Alma (2nd) found living righteously in chapter 7.

        We can only conjecture that Alma (2nd) received authority from his father, or, like Alma (1st) did, from God by operation of faith (Mosiah 18: 12 “And now it came to pass that Alma took Helam, he being one of the first, and went and stood forth in the water, and cried, saying: O Lord, pour out thy Spirit upon thy servant, that he may do this work with holiness of heart”.

        The church at Gideon (Alma 7), one of the 7 churches organized by Alma (1st), is found by Alma (2nd) to be living righteously (vs 17 – 27). Despite this, he still admonishes the Gideonites to utilize baptism (I don’t think he’s referring to ‘children of record’) for the remission of sins (vs 14 – 15), promising in verse 16 “And whosoever doeth this (baptism for a remission of sins), and keepeth the commandments of God from thenceforth, the same will remember that I say unto him, yea, he will remember that I have said unto him, he shall have eternal life, according to the testimony of the Holy Spirit, which testifieth in me”.

        King Limhi could have followed the same pattern as Alma (1st), but didn’t (perhaps prosperity clouded the urgency).

        I agree with you regarding the spiritual coma of Alma (2nd), he was redeemed without baptism. So are all persons whom die without the law (Moroni 8: 22). But why, then, is baptism the centerpiece of the Doctrine of Christ (2 Nephi 31 and 3 Nephi 11: 31-41)? My point is you said almost nothing about Alma (2nd) and baptism in chapter 5. There’s an enormous amount of truth skipped over here. Take a close look as verse 62, ‘I speak by way of command unto you that belong to the church; and unto those who do not belong to the church I speak by way of invitation, saying: Come and be baptized unto repentance, that ye also may be partakers of the fruit of the tree of life’. It’s clear the people ‘that belong to the church’ are commanded ‘Come and be baptized unto repentance …’. Can you help me learn how (other than a ‘Saul of Tarsus’ or ‘Alma the younger’ example) does a baptized person receive a remission of (serious) sins?

        Thanks for the sacrifices you are making for the sake of strangers like me.

        • So, do you believe that the priests of Noah had authority from God to baptize?

          • Roy Moore May 5, 2020

            No, they didn’t … because they had polluted the ordinances and were in a state of apostasy … just like every current religion without exception. But because they were of ‘Nephite’ heritage, it stands to reason they were taught the Mosaic law and inherited the correct ordinances from Lehi/Nephi/Jacob/Mosiah’s era.

            This is all for us, you know … the Book of Mormon is to awaken you and I from the ‘awful situation’ we’re in. It took 35 years for me to awaken and take a stand, which put me at odds with The CJCLDS INC. I’ve been ex’d because I’ve pointed out some discrepancies in the actions of ‘The Church” related to the BOM teachings. I’m not trying to challenge you, I only hope to learn more truth by asking “what’s the message here”. My local SP warned that if I don’t stop making people uncomfortable (and kiss his ring a/k/a priesthood keys), he will extinguish my salvation and temple sealing. I replied “the keeper of the gate [of salvation] is the Holy One of Israel, and he employeth no servant there …, I’ll stake my salvation on Him”. I am paying a serious price; but I have no regrets.

            Thanks again for your sacrifices in behalf of we seekers of truth.

        • Ranae May 5, 2020

          If memory serves me correctly, the podcast spent considerable time explaining that according to scripture, a “mighty change of heart” wherein a person has no more desire to do evil is a prerequisite to baptism. How then would a person who was baptized according to this pattern become guilty of serious sins? They wouldn’t want to.

          In my reading of how baptism fits into the preaching of both Alma Sr and Alma Jr is that it is “a covenant before God to serve him until you are dead”, with the accompanying blessing of a greater portion of God’s spirit. This is also consistent with 2 Ne 31. Any person guilty of serious sin after baptism would be in violation of their covenant before God and also the commandment to “not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” (Abinadi – Mosiah 13:15)

          I think the problem we run into is the push to baptize first and hope for conversion later. It encourages people to covenant to something before they are able to follow through with their commitment. Think of it like this, if sin were an addiction and you think of baptism as getting admitted to the rehab center as a means to recovery, then you might require continued baptism throughout your life, and never be fully free. However, if you think of baptism as the public recognition of your successful new life, received only after showing yourself to be capable of clean living (repentance), desiring the association of others to strengthen you in your new life, and with experience to help others in their walk with Christ, we might be closer to what is described in scripture.

          • That’s a great analogy. Just as it would be foolish to brag about entering rehab 20 different times as a demonstration of your commitment and willpower, the same would apply with baptism…why weren’t you more serious the first 19 times?

            D&C 22 tells us “although a man should be baptized a hundred times it avails him nothing, for you cannot enter in at the strait gate by the law of Moses, neither by your dead works”. Baptism without authority is a dead work, as well as baptism without true conversion. D&C 20:37 clearly states the prerequisites: all who “come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins, shall be received by baptism into his church.” If you’re baptizing people who haven’t yet received a remission of sins, you’re not obeying God’s commandment and therefore acting without authority and practicing dead works.

  3. Ranae May 5, 2020

    The story of Nehor slaying Gideon over a difference of belief is easier to visualize when I look at current events. In the past few years we have had news reports of violence directed toward people whose ideas are considered “dangerous”. (see Antifa related news) Nehor crossed a criminal line when his actions resulted in Gideon’s death, but the violence toward “wrong thinking” continued via verbal assaults (I guess back then they weren’t calling people Nazis, or xenophobes, but they probably had something similar to throw at people they disagreed with about political or religious ideals).

    Chapter 2 continues with a national election, where the loser refuses to concede. Fortunately, our parallel situation has not resulted in armed conflict in the streets of America. However, the current President has had to pivot from the Resistance tactics of criminal investigations and impeachment to the threat of a virus of foreign origin without a lag in the news cycle. There appears to be an alliance between the Resistance and foreign actors because the domestic enemies of the current government are allied with the foreigners to cover up the origins of the virus and shift to blaming the President for the domestic losses incurred. I compare this situation to the alliance between the Lamanites and Amlicites.

    In chapter 3, we are told about a mark which was used to distinguish the Amlicites from the Nephites. Because you couldn’t tell them apart by just looking at them, there needed to be a way to distinguish groups. In a world of international communication and social media, there are systems in place to “mark” groups as well, whether it be blue check verification on Twitter, or warnings marking potential “misinformation”. Online behavior can be tracked and compiled into a “social credit score” where people can be ranked by how correct their thinking is.

    Chapter 4 introduces a time of peace. But first they need to recover from the loss of their brethren and their livelihood. Their fields and flocks were trampled. This window of time is where people can dig deep and help each other, repenting and lifting up those who were in need of support, as true Christians would be expected to act. Initially the response was so good that thousands of people responded to that example and joined themselves to the church. However, the generosity appeared to be short lived. As the recovery from war continued, the generosity ceased and people focused more on their own prosperity (savings and retirement accounts?) than continuing to care for the poor and needy.

    Alma decides to divest himself of the responsibilities of Chief Judge so he can work on turning the hearts of the people to God. (side note: chapter 4, verse 16 tells us that Alma, through the voice of the people gives Nephihah power to enact laws and put them in force. We don’t have record that creating laws was something the chief judge had power to do previously.) Maybe this is a hint of a coming resurgence of prophets in the land who call our nation to repentance.

    So, going out on a limb, I am hoping that if the domestic affairs in our country can settle down at some point in the near future, we will finally have a condition where Americans can shift from survival to repentance. The questions in chapter 5 are relevant for each of us to take personal inventory. Among all the warnings in scripture of the devastation that will occur in the last days, we are told the righteous need not fear. The wicked will be destroyed, and the meek will inherit the earth. The events to come are under God’s control. Whether they are a great or dreadful for us personally will depend on which side of the line we choose to stand.

    • I wish you comparison to modern days was true, however, I fear we are already in the end of Jaredite civilization stage. We have two main sides who want the complete destruction of the other side, because they KNOW that the other side is evil and must be stopped no matter what. Neither side has the spirit, it stopped influencing our politics a long long time ago, and with today’s social media echo chambers you can find endless propaganda to confirm what you already know is truth. The BOM was definitely written for our day, however, we usually learn the wrong lessons from it, by not looking outside of our own bubble to see what beliefs we hold that our contrary to the scriptures.

      Interestingly if you look at the hill cummorah where both the Jaredite and Nephite civilizations ended, it is located in the great lakes region. Thus, most of the final battles of these two civilizations were fought in what we call the “swing states”. Coincidence? I think not. America is going to face the same fate as the two civilizations we were supposed to learn from. But we would rather distinguish ourselves by rank and break into tribes, and use every political trick possible to “win”. When by winning we mean imposing our tribe’s view of how people must live on the other tribe. So really we have two parties advocating Satan’s plan while pretending to have meaningful differences. I often feel like Ether, consigned to watch from afar the implosion of the nation. Though out of America’s ashes Zion will finally be established for 1000 years. The only thing we can really hope for is that many Americans will awake when things get truly terrible, and flee to Zion for refuge before it is too late.

      • Ranae May 6, 2020

        I am curious, at what point in American history do you believe that “the Lamb of God…manifest[ed] himself unto [the Gentiles] in word and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of their stumbling blocks”. I ask because 1 Nephi 14:1 says this is the point when the Gentiles need to “hearken unto the Lamb of God” and “harden not their hearts against the Lamb of God that they shall be numbered among the…house of Israel.”

        If Nephi’s vision of American’s future history is sequential, then 1 Nephi 14 occurs after the events in chapter 13. 1 Nephi 13:34-37 appears to refer to the coming forth of the Book of Mormon in the 1800s, and those “who shall seek to bring forth my Zion at that day”. There appears to be a period of time which passes before the stumbling blocks are removed, the believing Gentiles are numbered among the house of Israel, they are no more brought down into captivity, and the house of Israel is no more confounded. At this time we can also expect to see the great pit which was dug by the great and abominable church filled by those who digged it.

        The choice at that time is to repent, or perish. In previous discussions about the history and future of America, people have disputed its divine origin, pointing to the evidence of Freemasonry in the founders and the architecture of DC. If they are correct, this would be a huge stumbling block that needs to be removed. The secret combinations are being made public, the intelligence agency heads who sought to dig perjury and collusion traps for the incoming administration are about to be filled by the people who dug them, so I think we are on the verge of the repentance of the nation timeline, not the destruction. Again, if the stumbling blocks need to be removed for people to choose to hearken unto the Lamb of God, at what point do you think that has already happened?

        We know that the BOM prophets saw our day, and made their record accordingly. We also know that Nephi cut off the part of his vision just when things got relevant to us, referring us to John for the rest of the story. I am simply speculating that some of the historical events in the BOM are designed to give clues about the great and marvelous work in a way that might be recognized in hindsight, but not give the story away. I could be wrong, but it makes things interesting for me.

        You also mentioned the need to flee to Zion for protection. Zion needs to be built in order for people to flee to it. If this land is the place it will be built, don’t we need something other than an apocalypse to prepare the way for that kind of society? I am rooting for a return to Constitutional law, just as it was needed in the days of JS. Maybe we can have another shot at the goal before the opportunity is lost to us and given to another people.

        • The timelines in 1 Nephi 13-14 are off because I believe it is a dual prophecy. It doesn’t refer to just one series of events, but to two. The interpretation most make is that it is about the discovery of America and the founding of the United States. But there are several flaws, including in the passages you cite. Note that the Gentiles hadn’t smitten the remnant of the seed of Lehi in the 1830s. That smiting was happening concurrently to the foundation of the church and continued long into the 1800s – going up to the 1870s. You’ll note then after the Gentiles stumble exceedingly because parts of the gospel have been held back by the great and abominable church. Then God will be merciful unto the Gentiles and bring forth much of the gospel.

          That part in verse 34 is a future event, it’s not referring to the Book of Mormon.

          If you go back through Nephi’s vision and see it as happening AFTER the foundation and failure of the church in Joseph Smith’s time, a whole lot of it fits.

          Replace the Catholic Church as the most abominable church with the fallen LDS church (The CJCLDS INC. as Roy Moore calls it).
          Replace Columbus as the man separated from the seed of Lehi who is wrought upon by the Spirit of God with the deceased Joseph Smith in spirit prison.
          When the Spirit visits him, he returns from the dead along with other laborers.
          The book that has plain and precious truths about the Gospel removed from it isn’t the Bible (remember, the fulness of the Gospel was contained in the Bible and Book of Mormon during the life of Joseph Smith) but is the Doctrine and Covenants, having the entire doctrine (Lectures on Faith) removed by the great and abominable church.

          Most of that prophecy and the timeline fit with the return of the servants and the true restoration of the Gospel.

          • Well Mike beat me to a lot of what I was going to say. That’s an interesting about point about Joseph being the man in an allegorical sense. Waters are symbolic of chaos and death and the abyss. The problem and the beauty of prophecy ultimately is that it has so many layers of interpretation, and often we don’t realize the true interpretation, or its ultimate fulfillment until after the fact. So yes, COJCLDS INC, is the great and abominable church, but so are all the other world religions, and political parties, and philosophies of men, and financial systems, etc. (see 1 Nephi 14:10-14) As for where we are in the timeline, which as Mike points out isn’t necessarily sequential and has multiple fulfillments, so, yes the stumbling blocks were removed for that 3.5 years between June 1831 and December 1834, but they were subsequently put back on by the church corrupting the scriptures again as Mike points out above.

            The key verses for us, I believe, are 1 Nephi 14:17:
            17 And when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth, whose founder is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence, in preparing the way for the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel.

            This is already starting to happen, which is how we know that the fullness of the scriptures is about to come forth and the work is about to commence. Notice verses 18-27 of Chapter 14 talk about John, why? Because he has the fullness of the New Testament witness of all 12 of the apostles (see chapter 13:24) which must come forth.

            These verses are also about to be fulfilled:
            39 And after it had come forth unto them I beheld other books, which came forth by the power of the Lamb, from the Gentiles unto them, unto the convincing of the Gentiles and the remnant of the seed of my brethren, and also the Jews who were scattered upon all the face of the earth, that the records of the prophets and of the twelve apostles of the Lamb are true.

            40 And the angel spake unto me, saying: These last records, which thou hast seen among the Gentiles, shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved.

            41 And they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb; and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed, as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb; wherefore they both shall be established in one; for there is cone God and one Shepherd over all the earth.

            So the scriptures that are about to come forth that will establish the truth of the first are more of the words of Christ as delivered to the Nephites, and the full record of the 12 apostles that John has. They will be in one volume. I would suspect the brass plates will soon follow, or perhaps be published at the same time. But notice that the wrath of God is poured out on the nations first to wake them up, so that they will accept the truth when it comes forth for the last time.

            So, I hope many will repent, but I fear many in America will not, because they are the most prideful nation in the world. They have become Babylon incarnate, and are ruled by secret combinations. So God will destroy the nation to make way for Zion if they don’t repent, however, I believe it must be warned first, and God will use the American/Babylonian system to spread the gospel. Just like Paul was a Roman citizen and free to use the empire to spread the gospel, I believe the American passport will be a useful tool to spread the gospel to the nations as Zion is being established, and the final warning goes forth.

            • And most appropriate for Mormons, the original Book of Mormon had:

              1 Nephi 13:40 And the angel spake unto me, saying: These last records, which thou hast seen among the Gentiles, shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved.

              Even the LDS will need to come to understand who God is and who Christ is.

          • Ranae May 7, 2020

            Thanks for the comments. I take it from your timeline of US history that you equate the “smiting” of the seed of Lehi with the 1830 Indian Removal Act, which is why early missionaries needed to go to the western borders of Missouri to try to take the Book of Mormon to the Lamanites, correct?

            However, here is an excerpt from mountvernon.org’s article on George Washington’s native American policy:
            “Washington and Knox sought to provide safe havens for native tribes while also assimilating them into American society. Washington and Knox believed that if they failed to at least make an effort to secure Indian land, their chances of convincing Native Americans to transform their hunting culture to one of farming and herding would be undermined. As the two reluctantly came to recognize, however, it was the settlers pouring into the western frontier that controlled the national agenda regarding Native Americans and their land. By 1796 even Washington had concluded that holding back the avalanche of settlers had become nearly impossible, writing that “I believe scarcely anything short of a Chinese wall, or a line troops, will restrain Land jobbers, and the encroachment of settlers upon the Indian territory.” These were the conditions that eventually led to the Indian Removal Act. The situation only worsened in the following decades. The government treaties were useless if the settlers wouldn’t abide by the terms of the treaties, that is why they decided to move the Native Americans out of the way of the millions of people who were settling in areas which had belonged to the tribes.

            If you were a Native American from the southwestern US or anywhere south of the border, or from the Caribbean islands, reading these prophecies, instead of a Gentile, you would probably equate the “smiting” with what happened under the Spanish Conquistadors. You could even say that the forced conversions to Christianity were the result of not fully understanding the “most plain and precious parts of the gospel of the Lamb”. All these events preceded Joseph Smith’s ministry.

            I don’t happen to believe that the abominable church is specifically either the Catholic church or any specific named organization, although they may all be branches of the abominable church, and use its tactics for control and power. The great and abominable church of the devil, the mother of harlots, manifests in a variety of ways. It seeks to exercise dominion over the souls of men, instead of teaching them correct principles and letting them govern themselves. (I think we can see it manifest in some of the ways the COVID response has been enforced.)

            • You can apply it somewhat to the Spanish Conquistadors, but not understanding plain and precious parts is different from having them taken away. Most Mormons totally forget that God Himself proclaimed the Bible and Book of Mormon to contain the fulness of the Gospel. He doesn’t think it’s missing from the Bible. The fulness wasn’t removed from the Bible. But, yes, many people don’t live up to the fulness – especially LDS. So it will never match as well as those who want it to apply to Columbus, the discover of America, the founding of the United States, etc.

              Joseph Smith referred to the native Americans in the land of the United States as the seed of Lehi. He didn’t focus a lot of missionary work on Central and South America. That doesn’t mean none of them are descendants of Lehi. But when we dive deep into understanding what the prophecy is about, that’s when these small pieces to the puzzle come together.

              Once you shift your angle of perspective, the prophecy is much more profound as it details the failure of the initial restoration and the miraculous work and a wonder that will bring back the fulness of the Gospel. Look back at verse 34 and you’ll see how poorly it applies to Gentiles who stumbled over 1,000 years before the descendants of Lehi are smitten by them. With the new perspective, the order of Lehi’s descendants being smitten and Gentiles stumbling go hand-in-hand, happening pretty much at the same time.

      • “So really we have two parties advocating Satan’s plan while pretending to have meaningful differences.”

        I think you’ve nailed it here. Over the past 30 years or so, the two parties have taken part in the same plan to weaken the nation. They present their differences to the masses as being large and vast, but they are far more alike then they wish to admit.

        The “right” has sold out to Wall Street, seeking a profit at all costs. They have bought into globalization as a way to make profits at the expense of the working people in America.

        The “left” has also sold out to globalization. Publicly fighting against Wall Street, but privately being enriched by them. Part of their goals with globalization is to offshore all the messy, polluting work to poorer nations. They seek a false Eden at home while turning a blind eye to the environmental destruction around the globe. They also view humanity as a disease and would be happy with far fewer people in the world (look up the Georgia GuideStones).

        They are far more aligned in their policies and goals than they project to the two “warring” sides.

        What came into the mix, was a flawed man who saw what was happening and advocated for the people being left behind by both parties. He provides hope to many, but I don’t think he will be the solution. It would set back their plans if he were to succeed, so I suspect they will continue to do everything they can to see to it that he fails.

        I suspect there’s a good chance that if he fails, or the ruling secret combination succeeds in removing him, it will trigger that implosion. During the implosion would be a good time for Zion to be redeemed and those who can recognize it during the chaos will flee to it.

        • Yea I agree with basically everything you say. It’s quite sad to see what the system has become. The only solution is to put our trust in God for cursed is he that puts his trust in flesh. We have to be ready with oil in our lamps, because the rate the country is going I don’t think we have many elections left.

        • Ranae May 7, 2020

          I agree with your take on the two parties, which is why “a flawed man” has been opposed by both sides. I don’t think anyone who is paying attention believes it is anyone other than God who has enabled this man to thwart the unending attacks. Right now the world is watching the USA. If we succeed in restoring America to a place of “liberty and justice for all”, the arm of the Lord will be revealed in the eyes of all the nations. And we will have laid the groundwork to build Zion. The difference between the “if he fails” perspective you outline and my hope for a second chance at freedom is that I think he is doing God’s work to lift the downtrodden. If so, he will not fail, especially if the faithful are praying for the healing of our country, and the restoration of the rule of law. He will succeed in restoring us to a place where we can choose our fate, either to serve God and retain the liberty or to forget the miracle and be trampled down with the land and promises given to another people. Maybe the “fullness of the Gentiles” comes as a result of living under a Constitutional republic with the willingness to serve God and keep His commandments.

          I really don’t see how or where various commenters believe Zion will be built if our society is so controlled that you need permission to buy “non-essential” seeds to grow your own food to feed your family, and your very thoughts and words are treated as criminal actions. Gandhi was a flawed man who freed a nation with the help of God, but his work required an honest media to report the injustice in order for it to have any impact. Otherwise he would have been tossed in prison and never heard from again. He was not Christian, but he taught the equality of all castes of people, and humbled himself to stand among the untouchables. Isn’t that the gospel in action? The Jews in the days of Christ were looking for a political savior, which is why they missed what was happening in front of their eyes. Are we so focused on a spiritual savior that we miss the political freedom being offered as the millennial reign approaches, rooting for the collapse of this great country God has promised to protect and preserve if we serve Him?

          In any case, today has been declared a National Day of Prayer https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-national-day-prayer-2020/ Here is a song for the occasion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNDYTOgX0rg

          • I see the current president as more of a Nebudchanezer who is in this more for himself than the people, nevertheless, God is allowing him to do what he’s doing to weaken and expose the corruption of our system. Because Trump really is the embodiment of corruption. So, no he’s not a political savior and the wealthy and powerful have made trillions under him while the poor are still oppressed. The kingdom of God will be established by the one who is mighty and strong and yet a weak one of the earth. This kingdom will start small and will break in pieces the other kingdoms till it fills the whole earth. I see two scenarios for how this happens. There will actually be a president elected him will listen to the proclamation sent to him and he could use something like the antiquities act to allow Zion to start. Or he/she will reject the proclamation and God’s wrath will pour down upon the nation.

          • As Paul notes, God will be pouring out His wrath upon the nations who reject His warnings. I believe that while the nation is being torn apart, during that chaos, is when Zion will be redeemed with power and might. By the time the dust starts to settle, the nations will realize that Zion is there and will then begin to fight against her.

            I don’t equate Zion with the United States. Rather, Zion is contained within the borders of what is the United States. Just like all the examples in scriptures where God calls out the righteous from among the wicked, I believe the same will happen with Zion.

  4. Roy Moore May 6, 2020

    @ Renae
    Thanks for joining the conversation. Isn’t repentance necessary when people practice idolatry (including following false doctrine and priestcrafts)? Add to that persecuting and neglecting the poor and needy? I submit these two are ‘serious’ sins that people might be engulfed in for generations. MD, this blog repeatedly points out discrepancies between true scriptural teachings and the practices of The CJCLDS INC. God often resets the world with new covenants using ‘baptism’ as the sign. Often times intense persecution accompanies the act of recommitting because those in power claim ‘our baptism is the only authorized baptism’. JST, Matthew 9:18–20 “Then said the Pharisees unto him, Why will ye not receive us with our baptism, seeing we keep the whole law? 19 But Jesus said unto them, Ye keep not the law. If ye had kept the law, ye would have received me, for I am he who gave the law. 20 I receive not you with your baptism, because it profiteth you nothing.

    If a resurrected Joseph Smith were to come on the scene (and I believe he will), don’t be surprised if he follows the pattern of John and Jesus and also Alma (1st) in Mosiah 18 and Alma (2nd) in Alma 5-7. This is true doctrine.

    Anyone lucky enough to have found this blog and followed along so far will find their conscience pricked with guilt at the correlated drivel they’ve been fed for a lifetime and generations preceding us. Studying the BOM is crucial to awakening to our awful situation; but that’s only the beginning. What do we do with the knowledge we’ve sinned? Following the pattern laid out in the BOM, we repent and recommit according to Alma’s command (Alma 5: 62).

    Blessings to you both.