Monday, September 15, 2014

Appreciating The Prophet Joseph Smith

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July 6, 2014




Professor Alexander L. Baugh speaks about Joseph Smith’s four roles as seer, translator, revelator and prophet. (Ari Davis)
Alexander L. Baugh, a professor from BYU’s Church History Department, spoke about Joseph Smith’s mission as a seer, translator, revelator and prophet at the BYU Devotional on June 24.
Baugh’s grandfather, Francis H. Baugh Jr., instilled an appreciation for the Prophet Joseph Smith in his grandson at an early age through teaching him to play hymns on the piano. His grandfather saved the longest hymn in the hymnal, “The Seer, Joseph, The Seer,” for last.
“Looking back, I think that I can say that it was while I was learning to play that number, along with hearing my Grandfather Baugh sing the words, that I felt the first feelings of a testimony in my heart concerning the life and mission of Joseph Smith,” Baugh said.
Baugh continued his address by expounding on Joseph Smith’s mission through the scope of four roles.
As a seer
Baugh set out years ago to explore the types and number of visions Smith had throughout his lifetime. He categorizes the visions by three different types: visitations by heavenly beings, “mind visions” and visions through divine instruments.
“I was rather surprised when I discovered that documentation exists to show that he had over seventy visions,” Baugh said. “Certainly his most magnificent and doctrinally significant theophany occurred in the Sacred Grove in the spring of 1820 when the Father and the Son appeared and ushered in the opening of the latter-day dispensation.”
Baugh explained that a “mind vision” is when a seer sees beings that are not physically present, like in Doctrine and Covenants section 76. Baugh compared this vision to watching a “3D movie in an IMAX theater times 1 billion.”
Visions through divine instruments occur when a seer gazes into an instrument like the Urim and Thummim. Baugh recounted how Moroni instructed Smith to bring the correct person with him to collect the plates from the Hill Cumorah. Smith looked into the seer stone and saw the image of Emma Hale.
“I’m sure many young single adults wish they could have their own seer stone to help them see whom they should marry,” Baugh said. “It certainly would make the dating and courtship process a lot easier.”
As a translator
Smith translated a number of ancient texts including The Book of Mormon, ancient writings by John the Revelator, the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible and The Book of Abraham. Baugh expounded on what Smith meant when he said, “the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth.”
“Could I suggest that what the prophet may have actually been saying was that the English translation of the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any translated text? Why? Because the translation was given by revelation, and if it was given by revelation from God, it was correct,” Baugh said.
As a revelator
The Doctrine and Covenants is the largest compilation of Smith’s revelations, although it does not contain all of them. Church leaders deemed some revelations irrelevant to the church at large and did not include them in the Doctrine and Covenants. The Joseph Smith Papers Project publishes such documents online.
“It would be virtually impossible for any uninspired person, one not endowed with the gift of the Holy Ghost, to produce anything comparable to the prophet’s collective revelations,” Baugh said. “It cannot be done, even if that individual were the most gifted, intelligent, knowledgeable, cerebral theologian, religious scholar or academic.”
As a prophet
Baugh says one of Smith’s primary roles was to teach, expound and give sermons.
“In Latter-day Saint terminology, we generally refer to the president of the church as the prophet,” Baugh said. “However, the term ‘prophet’ has a much broader fundamental meaning: a prophet is a teacher.”
Baugh spoke about how some people were disappointed with Smith’s demeanor but that his counsel brought comfort to the “spiritual discerning.”
“As a seer, a translator, a revelator and a prophet, I give you my testimony that Joseph Smith’s mind did indeed stretch as high as the utmost heavens,” Baugh said. “He did indeed commune with God.”




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Donovan C Baltich
Donovan, native of Central Florida, is a senior reporter for The Universe. He is pursuing a degree in public relations, a minor in political science and a Spanish language certificate.
- See more at: http://universe.byu.edu/2014/06/26/alexander-l-baugh-joseph-smith-seer-translator-revelator-and-prophet/#comments

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Has Helped Millions

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May 12, 2014

The Mormon, the beggar, & the dog… [TRUE STORY]

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Bryan Alton ipas2@ultimatecyclertraffic.com via aweber.com 

9:25 PM (13 hours ago)
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Categorize this message as:
Never show this again
This might sound like the beginning of a joke...  
but it's actually very serious.
This Mormon guy hit the abyss of absolute rock bottom.
He and his family barely subsisted on the food donations
and charity of his church.

He's your all American stand up guy who risked his life to 
serve the country. But when he returned, he desperately 
struggled to make ends meet.
He had to beg and borrow from everyone and anyone, as he
looked into his children's eyes, wondering HOW he would
In the end he still had to file for bankruptcy. He kept searching
high and low for ANY kind of job, only to realize that he was 
no different than a dog chasing its tale
until............ this happened.
And today,  this very same guy personally mentors a group of 
10,000 students on the art of "breaking through". He also pays 
it forward to the church that saved his life, by contributing more
than most earn in a full year.
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Monday, May 26, 2014

Bulletin: We Now Know Who God Is, And His Plan For Each of Us

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May 25, 2014


The Biblical Prophet Samuel

By Donald White

Revelations and God and Jesus Appearing to man doesn't prove the man is crazy or his church should be ignored. It proves that Church and that man, and we call them prophets, are God's and Are leading the true church.

If you ever see a church without prophets, that actually has scholars vote to decide church doctrine, beware. Prophets are needed to reveal God's will for mankind. A church without prophets is nothing but a public relations group and have no business claiming they represent God when they don't. God decides what his commandments are, not us.

Here's a story about the mixed-up thinking of today's people. To them, black is white and vice versa. It is a sign of a church's validity if the members all pray to God and receive answers. Yes, I said the individual members. All should be able to approach God and get answers for their personal and family concerns.  But it's an ever so greater sign that the church is true if they have living prophets who regularly receive inspiration or revelation directly from God. That means God is behind that man and that church. Prophets' prayers are important to God, but so are yours. Prophets pray and listen in order to help people like you and me. Don White
_____________________________________________________________________________

What Jews And Skeptics Like Charles 
        
Dickens Have In Common

By Don White
Author of ten books and 
publisher-editor of 40 web sites

The famed Nineteenth Century writer Charles Dickens

liked the Mormons,  aka The Church of Jesus Christ of 

Latter-day Saints.

English Writer Charles Dickens had a negative attitude about
religion. He didn't believe in revelations and appearance of
heavenly beings such as when God the Father and Jessus
Christ in 1820 appeared to boy prophet Joseph Smith in what
Mormons call the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York.
But, unfortunately, Dickens falls into my “disgusting” category because if he had the chance, he likely  would have been with the Jews who crucified the Savior of Mankind.

It wasn’t that this great 

fiction writer didn’t like 

some things about the 

Mormons. But when 

one of their future 

prophets, young 

Joseph Smith, said he

prayed to God to find 

out which church to 

join, he received a very 

wonderful visit of God and Jesus Christ. That ws in 

1820 in a grove of trees near Palmyra, New York.


Did Dickens believe in visions and appearances of 

God? No--forget it. But today, 15 million members of

The Church of Jesus Christ believe. What's wrong with

naysayers is that they haven't taken the test--5 lessons 

from Mormon missionaries, study and prayer. If they  

do that I testify they will be converted and their lives 

will become better, fuller and more blessed than ever 

before. If they aren't willing to put it to the test, they 

will never know the joy and happiness that members

of the only true and living church on the face of the 

world know and feel. "Prove me herewith..." The Lord 

said. You probably won't see God, but you will hear or 

feel something--by the still-small voice--something 

wonderful and compelling--and we call it truth. 


According to the common man, no one is supposed to 

be able to see God, not even Jesus Christ. But That's  

Hogwash!


Who gave Dickens this ugly idea? Maybe the 

Catholics who have the worst idea of what God the 

Father looks like of any other people?



Along with Martin Luther and other reformers
John Wycliffe was pivatol in criticizing the Catholic Church
because of many of their wrong and oppressive teachings.
We are God's children. Isn't it logical that we should look like God?

Maybe the Catholics should read the New Testament where Jesus said “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” 

It may be that some of those Catholic “fathers” were really not truly converted to Christ, either. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have been so crass and presumptuous as to actually VOTE to determine Catholic Church dogma and teachings. 

Catholicism was so flawed that reformers like Luther, Loche, Calvin, Wycliffe and others complained and left the Catholic fold, forming their own churches which today we categorize as Protestant Churches.

All of us should pay more attention to Bible teachings. By revelation, the boy prophet Samuel, at age 3, was sent by his mother Hannah to live with Eli, the chief judge, as a gift from God. One time the boy awakened to see a large Philistine army preparing to attack the Israelites. Eli was almost blind at the time, but his spiritual acuity was excellent. He had prayed to God and was given a vision of numerous concourses of angels prepared to help defeat the Philistines. He told the boy Samuel not to worry, for the army on our side is greater than theirs. Spiritual experiences were well known and accepted then by the Jews. But later, when Christ said he was the literal son of God, the Jews nailed him to a cross and killed him.

In olden days it was okay for men of God preaching up a blue streak about sin and living riotous lives. No one was killed for merely doing that. But if the Jews (and some Catholic fathers) saw a holy man like Stephen looking up into Heaven and saying he saw the Father and Jesus Christ standing on his right side, watch out. They would want his life. In fact, it was okay for him to preach generically, but once he said he saw God and Jesus, he was a goner. They stoned and killed Stephen, despite all the good he did. Now the Catholics are going to wax angry. “When did we stone, or even disagree with Stephen?” Catholics might say.  We didn’t come about as a church until about 321 AD. We couldn’t have.” Yes, but you would have, judging by your defunct ideas about God and your evil teachings about his powers.

Joseph Smith, the prophet, with his brother Hyrum Smith, was
shot to death by an angry mob with painted faces in the Carthage
Jail, Carthage, Illinois in 1844.
The same thing happened to Joseph Smith. June 27, 1844 marked a turning point for the Latter Day Saint Church, of which Smith was the founder and leader in 1830. When he and an older brother, Hyrum Smith, were attacked and killed by a mob in Carthage, 

Joseph was mayor of Nauvoo, Illinois, and running for President of the United States. He was killed while jailed in the Carthage jail on charges relating to his ordering the destruction of facilities producing the Nauvoo Expositor, a newspaper whose first and only edition claimed Smith was practicing polygamy and that he intended to set himself up as a theocratic king.

But he wasn’t shot to death because of those issues. He was killed because he claimed to have seen God. Joseph Smith voluntarily surrendered to the authorities at the county seat at Carthage, Illinois to face the charges of violation of freedom of the press and property damage. While he was in jail awaiting trial an armed mob of men with painted faces stormed the jail and shot him, killing both Joseph and his brother Hyrum. We Latter Day Saints know that Joseph and Hyrum were prophets of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. They would be only the first martyrs of God’s church in these latter days. Others, including missionaries like Parley P. Pratt were killed while preaching the gospel.

So it’s okay to kill Stephen, the apostle, and the Prophet Joseph Smith? What’s wrong with those people who do things like this? Dickens liked the Mormons, generally, but one thing, as reported by scholar Hugh Nibley in his book The World And The Prophets, that this popular writer Dickens couldn’t tolerate is Smith saying he saw God and the Savior.

What’s wrong with saying this, especially if it is and was true? I know of no occasion where Joseph Smith lied to people. He was fearlessly honest. When he reported his first vision, he was only 14, and even a Methodist preacher turned against him. But Joseph  maintained the same testimony throughout his life. It’s a testimony abut the nature of God that each of us can obtain through prayer and fasting. We believe this knowledge is crucial because the Churches teaches us that families will be the governing body in the hereafter. How we learn to be obedient to our literal Father in Heaven in this life will affect how we are able to keep his commandments in the life to come. We aren't going to be sitting on the Moon or some star in heaven making up looney tunes and entertaining ourselves. God's work is too important for that. We the faithful will be helping the Savior and God do vital work to ensure that worthy spirts can live through a mortal life and be crowned in glory of their own and populate some of the many new planets and other creations that God is busy errecting even at this hour. Knowing this may make a difference in your earth life. Can God do anything and everything? Of course. He is God. If so, he can appear to man here on the earth from time to time as the Scriptures have recorded--such as to the prophets Moses, Adam, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob--and to latter-day prophets as well. He did appear to Joseph Smith in 1820, I know it as well as I know my own name.

It’s something no one can say didn’t happen, especially if they look at how far this great church has gone in these latter days—Christ’s only true and living church, now numbering more than fifteen million with members and missionaries throughout the world. It is a wonderful, dynamic organization with prophets and apostles—the same organization as the pristine church organized by Jesus Christ. If one studies this church’s history, she will find many similarities between the Church of Jesus Christ and the one Christ established. In fact they are identical. The LDS Church is the fully restored Church of Jesus Christ—and therefore it is essential that it be identical in every important aspect.

The Book of Mormon and the Joseph Smith account of seeing God are responsible in  convincing people of the Church's  truthfulness through the power of the Holy Ghost. It is this same spirit that helps converts receive a testimony of these things, including all the visions and revelations. But Satan tries to turn against us. He wants it to be seen by non members as a weakness of this great church, especially Catholics who do not have the priesthood of God; whose leaders are actually voted into office including the Pope, not by personal revelation from God as in the LDS Church. Imagine, a Pope who goes around the world without revelation? Without the Holy Priesthood of God. He doesn't even have the power to drive out evil spirits in man. It’s enough for the thinking man to say the Catholic Church is a sham, and so is Pope Francis and every pope before him. In saying this, I am speaking for myself, Don White, not for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The leadership of this church would not castigate the Catholics and the protestants as I have just done because they work closely with the Catholics in such endeavors as disaster aid and fighting abortion law. 

According to Hugh  Nibley, Dickens said about the Mormons in 1851: “What they do seems to be excellent. What they say is mostly nonsense…because it is mostly fanaticism in its newest garb, namely seeing visions in the age of railways.” That put them in the same class as the prophets and apostles of old in the minds of Dickens and others. What Dickens and others do not understand, and did not get, was that all new inventions such as rail travel was made possible by God, primarily to help grow the Kingdom of God and to push the true word of God along and help people understand that the gospel has been restored in these latter days. God is the undeniable power behind the restoration and formation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Having living prophets who speak to God and receive revelations from God, the LDS Church is the only true and living church in the world.

Name any technology or invention and you must credit it’s existence to God. Get your heads out of the sand, naysayers and nonbelievers. Jesus Christ, with authority, commission, and knowledge given from his Father, planned and built the Earth and all the planets that are out there.

Recently, astronomers noted that the universe is growing. That goes against the long-standing belief that our universe and all other universes were static. Not true. God is not done building planets and populating them with anxious spirits which He will clothe in bodies of flesh and bone, just like us. In other words, new stars and heavenly bodies like planets are appearing.

God never sleeps, his work goes on. What is his work? It is “to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” Moses 1:31

The work of building planets to house his people continues, and Jesus Christ is he who leads that endeavor, The Father and the Son are the greatest scientists and builders ever. When the scriptures mention “eternal increase”, this concept plays into the idea that there are worlds without end. That, too, was considered a Latter-day Saint doctrine that the protestants and Catholics would have no part of. They don’t believe it. But face it, almost daily there are new planets created and new truths (new to man) being given to man either by new scientific discoveries “invented by man” or by God directly to his prophets. The concept hasn’t changed. God allowed Moses and Adam to see the expanse of his kingdoms, which are ever growing and endless. “Endless is my name,” he said. Here are three instances in Latter-day scripture where he said this: Pearl of Great Price (Moses) and the Doctrine And Covenants:

·         Moses 7:35

35 Behold, I am God; Man of Holiness is my name; Man of Counsel is my name; and Endless and Eternal is my name, also.
10 For, behold, the mystery of godliness, how great is it! For, behold, I am endless, and the punishment which is given from my hand is endless punishment, for Endless is my name. Wherefore—
3 And God  spake  unto Moses, saying: Behold, I am the Lord God Almighty, and Endless is my name; for I am without beginning of days or end of years; and is not this endless?

The Mormons are onto something, folks. When are you going to stop being a Charles Dickens pseudo intellectual and humble yourselves to the reality that is passing right before your eyes? Look into the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not through some protestant or Catholic priest, but directly from the Mormon missionaries who will lead you to truth and righteousness. Invite to your home two of the more than 85,000 missionaries (they travel in pairs) of the only true and living church extant, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Pray earnestly and humbly about this Church and follow the testimonies of many or lose out. This time on earth before the Millennium is a testing time, a period when God determines who will go forth in the first resurrection, who will be his leaders. He’s not concerned about losing the battle with Satan.

God is winning, And as they say in sports, He is winning BIG TIME. In other words, between God and Satan, it’s a route, no contest. Satan has nothing except false hopes to offer. He did not receive a body in the great Council of Heaven, and because he denied the power of God and opposed him he was expelled from Heaven, forever tormented with the idea of what might have been, wanting to make God’s children as unhappy as he is by tempting them to do wrong.

All knowledge comes from God. He has been through it countless times. Don’t look to classical writers and early scientists to give you knowledge about God. Remember they thought the earth was flat. They have very little to offer you. Many of them still believe God is some unexplainable ethereal substance that is here and there at the same time. The nature of God was one of the great reasons God and Jesus Christ appeared to boy prophet Joseph Smith in 1820.

Listen to God’s reply to Joseph’s question as to which of the churches on the earth at the time he should join: “I was answered that I must join none of them, for they were all wrong; and the Personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that those professors were all corrupt; that: “They draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof.” 

Pearl of Great Price, Joseph Smith—History 1-26. Also

Joseph went home exhausted. As he leaned against the fireplace his mother asked what was wrong. He replied: “Never mind, I am well enough off.” Then he told her that he had found out for himself that Presbyterianism is not true.” He could have said at the same time that all other churches were not true as well: Baptist, Methodists, Catholics and all the rest. Has there ever been a more powerful statement of truth? 

If you are a member of any church other than the  

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 

your eternal life is in jeopardy.


You had better drop to your knees and ask, as did

young Joseph, not are any of those other churches that 

are true?—Joseph’s testimony is that God answered 

that question—but which church is true and which 

church should you join? 

Then check out the LDS Church. Have the missionaries 

to your home and start studying the gospel of Jesus 

Christ. These young men and women will not lead you 

astray. 

Neither will God when you kneel and 

confront the question in earnest prayer. Remember, it’s 

not too late, but if you wait and procrastinate the day of 

your repentance you may be sorry eternally. Time is of 

essence. We are in the eleventh hour, fifty-ninth minute 

before earth life as we know it will be closed out. Don’t 

let the Millinnum come without taking the five 

missionary lessons and making sure your place with 

God.


Many people misinterpret the statement that God is unchangeable. Yes, he is the same today as well as tomorrow. While this is true, only one church has had a large enough microscope—via revelation of prophets--to discover exactly what God wants for each of us and who God is and exactly what his plan is for us in the eternities, depending on our obedience. The Mormons are the only church in the world with living prophets in these latter days, prophets who have talkd with God. It's a fact, do not discount this.


Through prophetic latter-day writings and revelations, it 

has been determined that God is greater, more

personable, and far more knowledgeable about us than 

you may think—he knows our names and all about us--

even better than what men previously thought.


But if he gave us all the knowledge and information all at once, he would bowl us over and completely confound us. He gives us a little knowledge here and a little there, because we are too unwise and immature to digest it all at once.

 He gives us new inventions, using men as his instrument of delivery. No, inventions are not solely due to the genius of man. They come from God to fulfill his desire to bless mankind in finding the truth about the gospel and his true identify and personality. This is the most important thing. We must know him if we are to become like him. He is not a nebulous spirit without body parts and passions as the Catholics would have you believe. God has a body of flesh and bone, just as we do except glorified. He is our Father. We look like him, but our bodies are subject to death and are not yet glorified like his. Also, we are subject to disease and death. He isn't.

The word of God is going to all the world better and faster because of God-inspired inventions--airplanes, jet travel, television, radio, and digital things of all kinds. This includes cell phones, computers, mini-computers and tablets, and every invention and useful software imaginable. It all comes down to God revealing the light to mankind so that these marvelous things can help grow the understanding of God and our Savior in these times. 

We call this period of time the “Last of Times” or the “Last Dispensation” before the Savior returns and the Millennium begins. It’s when God fully extends his power over Satan here on earth for one thousand years before the great and last judgment.

God’s faithful are 

prepared and 

anxiously waiting 

for the Millennium 

to begin. Are you?




Can Prayer Cause Lightning, Stop Bar Construction?

Texas Beer Joint Sues Church In Mt.Vernon, Texas, Drummond's Bar began construction on expansion of their building to increase their business.
In response, the local Baptist Church started a campaign to block the bar from expanding with petitions and prayers. Work progressed right up
until the week before the grand reopening when lightning struck the bar and it burned to the ground! After the bar burning to the ground by a
lightning strike, the church folks were rather smug in their outlook, bragging about "the power of prayer ", until the bar owner sued the church
on the grounds that the church . . ."was ultimately responsible for the demise of his building, either through direct or indirect actions or means."
In its reply to the court, the church vehemently denied all responsibility or any connection to the building's demise.

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Don White was born during the height of the Great Depression, in 1936. He grew up in Salt Lake County, graduating from Granite High School and the University of Utah. He later received a law degree and became a professional underwriter. His insurance career ended in 1999, having served for 8 years as president of a mutual insurance carrier in Minneapolis. He has owned a mortgage notes firm and now writes for a living. He is author of three books and publisher of content on 20 web sites.