Book of Mormon: A Guide for Our Time

Note: I want to apologize for this post. I started writing it about a month ago and then got distracted with other things. I just want to get it over with and on to other topics. So I finished it today and haven’t gone through and made any revision. So I apologize and I hope you get something from it.

My most recent studies in the Book of Mormon have been in Mosiah. I’ve been studying the different breakaways and unifications in this book. Even the history of Lehi leaving Jerusalem gives some of the same things. Those of you who have also read these account probably have noticed many similarities between these accounts and our times today. What I would like to do here is examine the events in the Book of Mosiah and see how they can relate to us today. If so, then perhaps we can get guidance in what we must do.

Just a little backstory, I’m sure many of you are already familiar with it. Lehi was commanded by God to flee Jerusalem and the Apostate Jewish Church. He took his family and they fled. After crossing a great sea they arrived in what we call the Americas. Led by the Spirit Lehi’s family build up a church. The family was split in two with one group fleeing to another place, the Nephites. And the others developing a hatred towards the Nephites, the Lamanites.

The Nephites fled into the wilderness and settled in a land they called Nephi. There in Nephi they built a temple. They went through times of righteousness and wickedness. Eventually one Nephit named Mosiah was commanded by God to flee the land of Nephi. Mosaih eventually found the land of Zarahemla. Zerahemla had been established by agroup of people called the Mulekites. The Mulekites were another group of people who had fled Jerusalem. The Mulekites made Mosiah their king. This began the reign of Kings in Zarahemla. At some point a temple was constructed in the land of Zarahemla. Mosiah was not only the King but also established the church. All of the righteous people followed Mosiah out of the land of Nephi. Those who stayed were destroyed by the Lamanites. Mosiah’s son Benjamin became the king after his father. During this time the army of Zarahemla was sent to look for the land of Nephi.

A man by the name Zeniff was part of a scouting party. And he spied on the Lamanites. When Zeniff saw the good in the Lamanites he did not want them to be destroyed. Instead we wanted to make a treaty with them so they could poses the land of Nephi. But the ruler of the army was a bloodthirsty man. There was a battle where part of the army who sided with Zeniff fought against the part who sided with the ruler. Everyone who survived, including Zeniff, returned to Zarahemla.

Zeniff had a strong desire to reclaim the land of Nephi. So he gathered as many people as he could and went there. He made a treaty with the Lamanite King and began to rebuild the old city. They also established a righteous branch of the church. They began to reuse the old temple. There were also a few conflicts with the Lamanites.

Now we get to the interesting stuff.

Eventually Zeniff conferred his Kingdom upon his son Noah. This made Noah the proper leader both politically and religiously. We can liken this today to the leaders of the Church who were appointed by a certain process.

Noah put down all of the Priests his father had conferred and replaced them with his own. He put a tax on everything that the people produced.

Today it is required that you pay ten percent of everything your income in order to be able to enter the temples of the Church.

Noah also built many great and beautiful buildings. He decorated the temple and build a place for his priests to sit.

The Church uses the money from tithing to build large and beautiful temples. They also use investment income(which originated from tithing) to build many other building. For example a $6 Billion shopping center.

Noah also built a great tower near the temple. This to me is a shocking parallel in that a few hundred feet in one direction from the temple is a tower known as the Church Office Building. And a few hundred feet in another direction are two more towers that are part of the City Creek Center.

While towers may be interesting there is an even stronger parallel with today. If there are any Believing Mormons reading this, and you have made it this far, I advise you to carefully study this interaaction in the Book of Mormon.

There was a citizen of the land of Nephi named Abinadi. The Lord gave him a message to deliver. So Abinadi began preaching. The people turned Abinadi in to King Noah.

Now when we read Mosiah 11 we read it with hind sight. We can see obviously that what King Noah was wicked. But strangely the people supported him completely. When Abinadi began preaching the people rejected him. Abinadi was just some nobody. Now these are people who followed a righteous leader, Zeniff, just a short time before. So how could a people support a righteous leader and then a wicked one without even batting an eyelash? The answer is because they were not following the principles of righteousness they were following the leader. I guarantee that as some point early in his ministry King Noah taught that he could never lead the people astray. All the people had to do was follow him and they would be fine.

So when Abinadi came the people hated his words because he didn’t follow the leader. He taught that what their leader was doing was wrong. But the people, remember they supported a righteous King before so they didn’t love wickedness, continued supporting their leader.

This same exact(I don’t mean closely resembles, I mean exact) attitude exists in Church members today. Church members will support their leaders no matter what they do. Even when Church leaders violate or command the violation of God’s commandments the people don’t care. They support the leaders in these things. In fact if some random guy, just like Abinadi was, went to Salt Lake and started preaching against the wickedness of the Church, the members would HATE him. I bet some would even want to kill him. Members of the Church today would fit perfectly into King Noah’s Church.

If anything comes from Mosaih 11 let us remember that Church leaders can and do lead us astray. It’s part of the program! This chapter teaches us that we must be constantly on guard and defend ourselves against incorrect teachings that may come from our leaders.

Back to the story. After being taken to the king, Abinadi preached against the him and his priests. One of Noah’s priests, Alma, listened to Abinadi’s words and wanted Abinadi to be set free. But Abinadi was eventually killed and Alma was cast out.

Because Alma was now an outlaw he hid and recorded the words of Abinadi,. He repented of his wicked actions. He then went around preaching Abinadi’s words to the people, but he did it in secret. I have demonstrated in this post and previous ones, that we live in a time of wickedness. We should look to Alma as an example of what to do in times of wickedness.

First Alma wrote the words of Abinadi. We need to treasure up the word of the Lord.

Secondly Alma repented of his sins. This is a process that all of us should be doing. Repentance is change. So when we learn something more or different than what we are currently doing we must change to come into alignment with the correct teaching.

Third Alma began preaching to the people in secret. The reason he was preaching in secret was to avoid the king, who wanted him killed. While we don’t have a king who wants us dead, we do have powerful church authorities. For some of us it may not yet be time to depart the L-DS Church. In this case it may be better to preach in secret. Others of us may have already become significantly distanced from the L-DS Church the we can preach openly. Regardless it is vital that we begin preaching to the people.

Those people who believed Alma, went to his hiding place in Mormon. After a few days there were many people there and Alma began teaching them. He taught them about faith, redemption, and repentance.

After teaching them Alma asks them to be baptized. He gives some qualities a person should have before baptism. The attributes are as follows:
– Be desirous to come into the fold of God,
– Be desirous to be called his people,
– Are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light,
– Are willing to mourn with those that mourn,
– To comfort those that stand in need of comfort,
– To stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death.

Notice that none of these are about having a strong knowledge about Church doctrines or policies. Rather they are attitudes that we should possess before baptism. I’ve heard many people say that this is the baptismal covenant. But this is not the covenant. Instead we learn that baptism is a witness of a covenant we make. The covenant we make is that, “[w]e will serve [God] and keep his commandments.” Baptism is not the covenant but a witness of the covenant.

Additionally we must recognize that all these people were already baptized into the church under Zeniff and Noah. So what they were doing was participating in rebaptism. Members of the Church today claim that weekly partaking of the sacrament is a renewal or re-committal of the baptismal covenant, but this is not correct. Rebaptism is a renewal of the baptismal covenant.

After being rebaptized these people were called the church of God or church of Christ. And anyone else who was baptized was added to this church.

This is also an example for us today. Baptism is the way to enter the Lord’s church. And either by a n initial baptism, a valid former baptism, or a rebaptism we likewise enter the Lord’s church. In the church Elders and Priests are authorized to perform baptism. I would encourage anyone reading this that if you possess those attributes listed above, that you be baptized, or rebaptized into the church. You can locate and Elder or Priest and have them perform this. You can use the comments section below to find someone.

Alma commanded the Priests he ordained to teach nothing except the words of the prophets, and faith and repentance.

Alma also commanded them that they shouldn’t have any contention. This is something that I believe is important for becoming unified with other people who believe differently about certain things. We must “look forward with one eye, having one faith and one baptism, having their hearts knit together in unity and in love one towards another.” The Gospel is all that is important for our function as the church. Other topics are interesting and edifying but we should only be preaching faith and repentance.

Another thing is interesting is that immediately Alma instituted the Law of Consecration. Just like in the first years of Christianity. all people gave what they had and it was distributed among everyone.

It was about this time the the King found out about this movement and sent his army to find them.

Now imagine this was occurring in our days. There is a group of people gathering without the permission of the Church(TM). They are holding meetings, baptizing, preaching, and living the law of consecration. All of this without the consent or permission of the “mainstream” Church.

Now imagine that Thomas Monson finds out about this movement(I am not insinuating that Thomas Monson is participating in the same activities as King Noah was). What do you think Thomas Monson or other general authorities would do?

I think that if any of the members were still attending L-DS wards then they would be pulled into Bishops offices. They would most likely undergo Church discipline. The First Presidency would issue warnings against participating in such groups. They would condemn such groups as apostate and having gone astray. Granted this is just my own thoughts, but it may reflect reality.

Instead of embracing such a movement as branch of the church, the Church today would assume the same role that Noah did in Alma’s day.

Well it so happens that Noah did what any good power hungry leader should do. He told everyone that Alma was stirring up the people to rebellion against him. So he sent his army out to squash the “rebellion.” But meanwhile back near the waters of Mormon Alma and his people were somehow “appraised” of the coming of the King’s army. So they go out of there and fled into the wilderness.

Now this seemed to snapped some of the people out of the apathy they were in. Because after this a “lesser part” began to threaten the king. This tells to me at least that the people had at least some sense of reason. The majority of the people may have sided with with Noah, knowing the prophet(or king in their case) can never lead them astray. But when he sent his army out to kill a bunch of innocent crazies gathered in the woods at least a few of the people realized there was something wrong in whoville.

Long story short a guy name Gideon comes to kill the king. And chases him up the tower. But I love King Noah’s reaction. If any of you have seen the movie Madagascar, there is a scene where Melman the giraffe is stuck in a shipping crate, after being shipwrecked on Madagascar. Alex the lion is trying to get him out by ramming him with a tree trunk. But Melman realizes Alex is about to ram him in the crotch. As Alex is running closer Melman is screaming for him to stop. Then suddenly he shouts, “There’s Gloria!”(Gloria is a hippopotamus that is part of their group and hasn’t been found on the island yet) Alex stops to look and to Melman’s surprise Gloria’s shipping crate really has washed up on the beach. Melman says to himself, surprised that his ruse was true, “It IS Gloria.”

I can just imagine this same reaction with King Noah. Gideon is chasing him up the tower. Fearing for his life King Noah desperately shouts out, “Oh look it’s the Lamanites!” Then to his surprise the Lamanites really are there!

So then Gideon spares him and King Noah ordered all the men to leave their wives and children and flee into the wilderness. Now I imagine that the TBNs(True Believing Noahites) where wondering what king of trial of faith this was. Why was the Lord commanding the priesthood holders to flee into the wilderness and leave the women and children at the mercy of the Lamanites? But we must be obedient to the Lord’s anointed because he knows what’s going on more than we do. However this seemed to be another dividing line, shattering many of the TBNs beliefs because many decided it was better to stay and send their fair daughters out to plead with the Lamanites.

The other dividing line was with those TBN men who had fled into the wilderness. They realized that what King Noah was doing was wrong. So the burned him, fulfilling Abinadi’s prophecy. Now I wonder if the people had hear of the prophecy and made a conscious decision to fulfill it rather then, “Oh wadaya know, the prophecy was fulfilled.” Perhaps they took it upon themselves to fulfill the prophecy. This can serve as an example to us. Do we sit around waiting for prophecies to be magically be fulfilled or are was actively trying to fulfill the prophecies?

Anyway before the people can kill the priests they flee. The men who fled returned home(I can just imagine the explaining they had to do to their wives).

But the pleading the beautiful daughters did worked. The Lamanites allowed them to live in the land with Limhi(one of Noah’s sons) as their king. They had a great tax placed upon them.

Limhi was a more righteous man. He worked to establish peace in his kingdom.

Meanwhile the old priests under Noah stole some of the daughters of the Lamanites to be their wives. This cause trouble for Limhi when the Lamanites blamed him for the disappearance of their daughters. But after a great deal of trouble Limhi got it sorted out. He started to again establish a peaceful kingdom.

Eventually Ammon from Zarahemla wanders into their town. He starts figuring out what happened. And they morun for everything that happened. And interesting key word is that they mourned that Alma, who had formed a church of God, had fled. Alma hadn’t formed THE church of God, but a church of God. Since the church of God was still around in other areas what Alma formed was just part of the church.

Now that the people had been forced to see that Noah could in fact lead them astray the people wished that they could have joined Alma’s people. Now the people wanted to be baptized but for some reason Ammon felt unworthy and didn’t baptize them.

Eventually Limhi and his people escape from the Lamanites and return to Zarahemla.

Meanwhile in the wilderness Alma and his group found a nice place and started to build a city. The people wanted Alma to be their king but Alma refused. He told them, “It is not expedient that we should have a king; for thus saith the Lord: Ye shall not esteem one flesh above another; or one man shall not think himself above another; therefore I say unto you, It is not expedient that ye should have a king.”

Eventually the army of the Lamanites, who had been in search of the escaped people of Limhi, stumbled upon Alma’s group. The Lamanites agreed to spare Alma’s people’s lives and liberty if they showed them how to get back to the land of Nephi. But the Lamanites went back on their promise and ended up putting the people who came from Noah’s priest, led by Amulon, over Alma’s people.

After a time of trial Alma, and those people of Amulon who had join their church, decided to break the (Lamanite) laws of the land and flee again into the wilderness. They left and found another place to stay, but the Lord told them to keep moving because Lamanites were after them. So they kept forging ahead in the wilderness and lo and behold the found their way back to Zarahemla.

After Mosiah, the grandson of Mosiah and son of Benjamin, talked to the assembled body of people, he had Alma speak to them. Alma eventually baptized the people of Limhi. Now I do have a question why nobody of Mosaiah’s people was able to baptize the people of Limhi. Or perhaps Limhi’s people arrived only a short time before Alma and didn’t have time for anyone else to baptized the.

Now I’m going to quote here what happened next:

“And it came to pass that king Mosiah granted unto Alma, that he might establish Churches throughout all the land of Zarahemla; and gave him power to ordain priests and teachers over every Church. Now this was done because there was so many people that they could not all be governed by one teacher; neither could they all hear the word of God in one assembly; therefore they did assemble themselves together in different bodies, being called Churches; every Church having their priests and their teachers, and every priest preaching the word according as it was delivered to him by the mouth of Alma: and thus, notwithstanding there being many Churches, they were all one Church; yea, even the Church of God: for there was nothing preached in all the Churches except it were repentance and faith in God. And now there was seven Churches in the land of Zarahemla. And it came to pass that whosoever was desirous to take upon them the name of Christ, or of God, they did join the churches of God; and they were called the people of God. And the Lord did pour out his spirit unto them, and they were blest, and prospered in the land.”

This to me is a key indicator to support the idea that “the church” is in fact many different individual congregations. The church is the people as a whole but at the same time each independent congregation is also the church.

I hope you’ll forgive me for this overly long summary of these chapters of Mosiah. The overall point I want to draw from this is that establishing a church(meaning a congregation) can be done as dictated by the Spirit. It does not require authorization from “Presiding Authorities.” These chapters provide a real example of how this can work and that is IS ACCEPTABLE TO GOD! We must look to the Book of Mormon to see the will of the Lord. The Doctrine and Covenants deals with more of the nitty gritty of establishing churches, which I will discuss later.

For now I leave you with this. Don’t be afraid to gather in settings apart from L-DS meetings. You are the church and wherever you are gathering that is a gathering of the church.

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24 Responses to Book of Mormon: A Guide for Our Time

  1. What I find interesting is that God was able to eventually gather all these separate bodies (churches) into one people in one land. So even though they were separated into separate churches (wards) for logistical purposes, they were still essentially one nation, with borders.

  2. zo-ma-rah says:

    True. And that is exactly what Israel/Zion must be. As I’m going to discuss in, possibly, my next post, We must gather as an independent nation with borders. That’s exactly what expanding the borders of Zion means, gaining more territory.

    We are all independent and unified at the same time. This applies to the individual as well as the congregations and stakes.

    • As far as I understand it God’s plan is to create his capitol city in Jackson county, Missouri. From there His nation’s boundaries will expand to fill the United States. His kingdom is the kingdom described in the book of Daniel that will ultimately grow to fill the whole earth. It’s preposterous to believe that it’s filled the earth with righteousness already. The idea is to create a powerful nucleus (Zion) which will eventually permeate the whole. But until Zion is created, the Church doesn’t have the strength to do a whole lot. When you think about it, 12 million scattered saints (if you can call the majority that) throughout the world is a drop in the bucket compared to 6.5 billion earthly inhabitants.

      • zo-ma-rah says:

        Yes, I agree. That’s like just over one eighth of a percent, I believe. This latter day Israel stuff is AMAZING. I can’t wait to get to it in my posts. But my next one will be about how to establish our churches.

  3. John Ellis says:

    Hmmmm….very interesting “Cliffs Notes” on Mosiah! After reading your conclusion about “the church”, I believe that you are beginning to stumble onto some of the characteristics and attributes of the Christian church that has been here since the time of Christ. Perhaps one day you will arrive at the same discovery that I have. God Bless you!

  4. Dave P. says:

    It looks like you left out one of the most important things Abinadi said. Alongside testifying that Jesus Christ is both the Father and the Son, one of his prophesies is that the situation with Noah would be a type and a shadow of the latter days. In short, everything you outlined in the parallel between the time of Noah and LDS Inc. today has all been foretold!

    • Interesting. Abinadi prophecied that what was happening in his day was a type and a shadow of Noah’s day and our day is a type and a shadow of Abinadi’s day. Parallels upon parallels.

  5. zo-ma-rah says:

    Thanks. I was bound to miss a bunch of stuff in my summary.

  6. Toni says:

    Very thought-provoking. Thanks for sharing your opinions.

  7. Dave P. says:

    Yikes! Something’s messed up with the comments’ RSS feed. Checking it before today yielded about a dozen or so of the latest comments, now I’m only seeing 2.

  8. zo-ma-rah says:

    Did it get sorted out? I have no clue what RSS even is.

  9. Noah says:

    Great post, but I think it went off the rails when you continued to uphold the paralells to the bitter, ugly end. Everything up until and included when Alma flees and teaches in secret is well taken. I don’t think this BoM account parallels modern times, but it does tell us what to do when our ecclesiastical leaders lose their moral authority to lead. Would love to meet locally and separately with like-minded people, but it all seems blatently cultish…don’t know who would go for it. I agree though…the best those such as ourselves can do is teach the gospel in private. I mean…I’ll never teach from the pulpit again I’m sure. My last talk I pulled a fast one and didn’t parrot my assigned Ensign talk. I gave a talk on women and the Priesthood but put a very unorthodox spin on it. Even worse, I snuck in some of my own personal insights. *Gasp* I’ve also got an “asterisk” on my membership (it follows me around from ward to ward) because I told my bishop that I don’t follow the Word of Wisdom because theWord of Wisdom we follow today isn’t the same as the one in D&C 89. Been wanting to write a brief commentary on the BoM myself, largely following the trajectory that you and Rock seem to be following. If I’m not mistaken it’s about what it means to be Mormon-Nephite in the 21st century. After all, all of the Nephite short-comings are short-comings we as Mormons have adopted.

    • rory says:


      I’d love to hear about your 21st century commentary on what it would mean to be a Mormon-Nephite today… do you have it posted anywhere or could you give me a cliffnotes version?

      • Noah says:

        Yes and no. It’s vaguely present in something I posted on my blog last week. See: , particularly the parts in bold. I haven’t gotten into it with Rock Waterman, but in reading his blog he seems to allude to the same thing now and again. The underlying theory, I suppose, is that Joseph Smith, by transcribing the Book of Mormon, gave an upstart religion a 2,000 year plus history that otherwise wouldn’t have had a history. The vulnerabilities of the Nephites and their society, at least what’s emphasized in the account, are very much our own as Mormons; the dangers we face as a people are the same. Now what makes Rock’s approach interesting, and he and I agree on this, is that it isn’t always just the people who suffer these vulnerabilities, but the Church as well. So we need to ask ourselves, where does the narrative of the Book of Mormon diverge from our own? Of course, I think the answer lies in the exercise of our god-given agency. Anyway, I took a very long time to respond to you, so unfortunately, you probably won’t ever see this.

  10. zo-ma-rah says:

    Noah, I would have loved to hear that talk. I wonder if I have an asterisk on my records. The ward boundaries were just redone and my wife an I didn’t get callings while others were getting two callings.

    Yeah, it’s funny you talked about Alma leaving being the dividing line. That’s about where I stopped writing a month ago and the rest is what I finished the day I posted it. I’m not surprise to hear how bad it was. Hahaha.

    • Noah says:

      I think it was a rather good talk, though not well received. It was a dramatic retelling of the Adam and Eve story. That wasn’t what got me the asterisk though–It was my rant to the bishop on the Word of Wisdom as it’s currently implemented. The talk remains a rather nice love story (I’m a story-teller, not a philosopher, as my blog makes clear), but, having been written a few years ago, it espouses some beliefs I no longer hold.

  11. bruce says:

    Another great post. Here’s my two cents. You mentioned Alma’s list of requirements for baptism such as…
    -Are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light,
    – Are willing to mourn with those that mourn,
    – To comfort those that stand in need of comfort,
    It came to me that these just don’t mean bringing a cassarole over when a neighbor gets sick or accepting a canning assignment. It really means are you willing to live the law of consecration. Notice they immediately begin to live the law of consecration in verses 26-29.
    And what was the people’s reaction to Alma’s challenge? They clapped their hands for joy.
    Now here’s the question…would we do the same today? If we knew that when we accepted baptism, we would be covenanting to live the law of consecration… would we do it? Would we clap our hands and exclaim this is the desire of my heart? Or are we too in love (coveting) with our own stuff and unwilling to share? Is it any wonder why we do not recieve the baptism of fire when we join the church?…we are not meeting the requirements.

    • 3 It is contrary to the will and commandment of God that those who receive not their inheritance by consecration, agreeable to his law, which he has given, that he may tithe his people, to prepare them against the day of vengeance and burning, should have their names enrolled with the people of God.
      4 Neither is their genealogy to be kept, or to be had where it may be found on any of the records or history of the church.
      5 Their names shall not be found, neither the names of the fathers, nor the names of the children written in the book of the law of God, saith the Lord of Hosts.

      9 And all they who are not found written in the book of remembrance shall find none inheritance in that day, but they shall be cut asunder, and their portion shall be appointed them among unbelievers, where are wailing and gnashing of teeth.
      (D&C 85:3-5,9)

      Anyone who is not consecrated will not enter into the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom. Unlike what Elder Christofferson said, consecration isn’t just the willingness to be helpful, it is a literal covenant. It requires a written record (or deed; D&C 42:29-30,36) just as all temple work does. You enter into the initial covenant in the temple, but even that covenant refers you to the D&C for the rest of the story.

      “Now, the nature of this ordinance consists in the power of the priesthood, by the revelation of Jesus Christ, wherein it is granted that whatsoever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Or, in other words, taking a different view of the translation, whatsoever you record on earth shall be recorded in heaven, and whatsoever you do not record on earth shall not be recorded in heaven; …”
      (D&C 128:8)

      Therefore, if you don’t have a covenant which you keep by your works, you don’t have any promise whatsoever. If God has removed (or postponed) the law, he has also removed your access to the Celestial Kingdom.

  12. aka says:

    I think the most important part of the post is:

    I’ve heard many people say that this is the baptismal covenant. But this is not the covenant. Instead we learn that baptism is a witness of a covenant we make. The covenant we make is that, “[w]e will serve [God] and keep his commandments.” Baptism is not the covenant but a witness of the covenant.

    This brings everything back to where it should be, a relationship between God and the individual. It is no longer another box to be checked. It reminds me of:
    O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this bread to the souls of all those who partake of it; that they may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son, and witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him, and keep his commandments which he hath given them, that they may always have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.

  13. rory says:

    You said:

    The Gospel is all that is important for our function as the church. Other topics are interesting and edifying but we should only be preaching faith and repentance.

    Repentance from what? Seems to me that repentance could be construed to mean just about everything under the sun: failure to pay 10% tithing, to go to church, to build temples, to HT/VT, to dress inappropriately, etc.

  14. Toni says:

    I would think the commandments would be the ones found in scriptures, though I do agree that almost anything can be SAID to be commandments.

    • Dave P. says:

      One thing that people often forget, Toni, is that many of those commandments were tenets of the Law of Moses: the black/white “letter of the law” approach that had to be given to the children of Israel because of their unfaithfulness. When the Savior served his ministry, he fulfilled the law and re-established the law of the gospel, which is the spirit of the law approach.

      Sadly, as we’ve seen today, the church doesn’t want to live that law and be guided by the spirit based on the principles that Christ taught, because the members are too busy listening to the mantra of “follow the prophet” and debating if chocolate is against the Word of Wisdom. At the same time, as we see in the world, laws on a city/state/federal level are becoming more and more restricted to keep with that “letter of the law” approach that has put a stranglehold on people’s freedoms and agency.

  15. Toni says:

    You’ve got that right, Dave. There is, most definitely, “a hedge about the law” in our time. Both secular and religious law are confining and choking. I was thinking of the post right above mine, when I responded. There are far too many things to feel guilty about, and I wonder how many of these things are what God would consider worth feeling guilt over. I honestly do not think a policy, a tradition, or someone’s opinion is a commandment.

  16. max hale says:

    Most of the above including text & comments are useless opinion about nothing that’s important. Can’t you lot get something worthwhile to talk about or else state your real opinion instead?
    For a start, trying to run a Church is difficult – you can’t please everybody. It is doing something instead of idle chatter about the subject which is hardly doing something.
    I wait for something useful.

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