Published September 22, 2012
family , LDS , Missionary , Mormon Culture , Mormon Doctrine , Mormonism , Personal/Family , Scriptures
Tags: LDS, Mormon, Mormon Culture, Mormonism, Scriptures
A paraphrased story from my #2 son:
We have recently moved to a small town in western Ohio. My #2 son is one of only two young men in the local high school (as far as I know). He is participating on the football team and just the other day the team had a meal together. At the table where he sat, the conversation turned to the practices of Mormonism. The report of the conversations went something like this:
“So you believe there should not be any sex before marriage.”
“Yes”, my boy said.
“What would you do if a pretty girl came up to you, unzipped your pants, and gave you a hand job?”
“I would probably slap her face.”
“No you wouldn’t”
“Yes I would”
“What about Adam and Eve, they weren’t married”
“Yes the were”
My son then pulls out his IPod and goes to Genesis 1 to show that Adam and Eve were husband and wife.
“Dude. You have the scriptures on your IPod?!”
The boy seemed to handle it pretty well. And seems to have no fear.
Recent events in my life have caused me to think more about leadership. It is difficult for me to observe anything without evaluating the leadership behind the event. My wife is a big Star Trek fan, and has been watching old episodes on Netflix. As I have watched a few of these with her, I cannot help myself from evaluating the leadership styles and preferences of the Star Trek captains.
Continue reading ‘Which Star Trek Captain Would Make the Best Bishop?’
I have been wondering about the question of whether members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ought to be more optimistic about the after-life than members of other Christian faiths. In asking this, I am not wondering which group is more smug, arrogant and self-righteous. I am also not asking this in terms of who is more confident in being doctrinally correct. What I am wondering, is given the basic theology of different religious traditions (Mormonism and mainstream Protestants for example), who should be more optimistic about the after-life? In making such comparisons, I will of course be generalizing and over-simplifying to very high levels. But I hope that thinking and discussing this will have some positive results.
Continue reading ‘Who Should Be More Optimistic About The After-Life?’
I know that the church is true.
This statement is repeated over, and over again on the first Sunday of every month in Fast and Testimony meetings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Members, of course, are not forced to say this, but most of them do. This certain statement bothers a few people when they hear it. They will often say that the ‘know’ part is to strong, and ‘true’ is a pretty strong word as well.
Continue reading ‘I Know the Church is True – Or – Epistemology of a Testimony’
I served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Georgia. While I was there, I came across many conservative, fundamentalist, Southern Baptists. These folks appeared to be heavily influenced by Calvinist theology. I learned to love the people, but I hated the theology. Perhaps missionaries who serve in the southern U.S. should receive some type of therapy upon the completion of their mission, because I still get a little grouchy whenever I hear the term ‘grace’.
Continue reading ‘Grace vs. Grace Alone’
The phrase ‘the philosophies of men, mingled with scripture’ is sometimes used by Mormons to discredit some idea as a false doctrine, even if the idea has some scriptural support. It almost always has a strong negative connotation associated with it. I imagine that people who have a background and interest in philosophy wish that this phrase, and the usual usage of it, would just go away. I do not believe it is likely to go anywhere, and since one place this phrase is used is a narrative that is sacred to Mormons – it may be a warning to be taken seriously.
Continue reading ‘Philosophies of Men, Mingled with Scripture’
The concept of worthiness in a somewhat unique aspect of Mormonism. There are frequent worthiness interviews that one undergoes when fully participating in the church. Youth get interviewed quite frequently as they progress through the youth programs and Aaronic priesthood quorums. Adults get interviewed for temple recommends regularly as the recommends expire. There are also interviews for church callings. The individual conducting these interviews (particularly temple recommends and priesthood advancement) has a responsibility to determine the worthiness of the person being interviewed.
I fully expected the good folks at the SMPT to reject my paper. I was then going to post it with a title something like ‘Wanna read a rejected SMPT paper?’ I am glad that they accepted it because it allowed me to have a great experience. I would like to review what I thought were some of the highlights, and then give my impressions of the session I was in.
Continue reading ‘My SMPT Experience’
In one week my presentation will be over, and perhaps I will be able to think about something else. That might be nice. In a recent thread at BCC, J. Stapley apparently felt the need to argue my presentation before it is even given. This is probably no big deal since we have been over this stuff often, and I am sure that I will not be presenting anything that will be a big surprise to anybody. In the comments to this thread I stated that Dr. David Paulsen and I seemed to be on the same page with much of this topic. Matt W. said that he read the same section of ‘Mormonism in Dialogue with Contemporary Christian Theologies‘ and did not come away with the same impression. I am pleased to pass along what I feel are the relevant statements from this section of the book.
Continue reading ‘Reviewing Paulsen’s Statements Relating to ‘Spirit Birth’’
As I am sure a few of you have noticed, I have had something of a one-track mind lately with my upcoming presentation at the SMPT conference (schedule announced here). I was recently considering why I felt so strongly about this idea of spirit birth, when others don’t share this feeling – and even go to great length to dismiss the idea in spite of current church teachings on the subject. This brings me to the story of Pinocchio which may bring some interesting discussion on the topic.
Continue reading ‘Pinocchio, Spirit Birth and Being a ‘Real Boy’’