My Scripture Notes


JOURNAL, PRIESTHOOD LINEAGE, PATRIARCHAL BLESSING

ADULTERY, ANGELS, ANGER, APOSTASY, ARGUGING, ASK, ATHEISTS, BAPTISM, BETHLEHEM, BLACKS, BLESSINGS, BLIND, BLOOD, BOMB, BREAD, BRIGHTEST SPIRITS, BRUISED, CALLINGS, CATHOLICS, CHARACTER, CIMETER, CIRCUMCISION, CLEANLINESS, COMMON JUDGE, CONDUCTING, CONVERSION, CRUXIFIXTION, CRYING, DEATH, DEBT, DINOSAURS, DISCIPLE, DISCERNMENT, DOVE, DUST, ENOUGH AND TO SPARE, ETERNAL SEEED, ETERNITY, EVIL SPIRITS, FAITH, FALSE PROPHETS, FAMILIES, FAST OFFERINGS, FEAR, FORGIVE, GAYS AND LESBIANS, GOSSIP, GRATITUDE, HANDSOME, HATE, HEMATIDROSIS, HEROD, HOBBIES, HOLY ENVY, HOME-TEACHING, HONESTY, IDOLS, IGORANCE, IMAGE, INTEGRITY, JOY, JUDAS, JUDGEMENT, KNEELING, KNOWLEDGE, LAUGHTER, LISTEN, LUKE, MARK, MATTHEW, MARRIAGE, MEEK,  MILLENIUM, MIRACLES, MORNING STAR, MUSTARD SEED, MURDER, MYTHS, NAKED, NAME, NEW JERUSALEM, NOAHS CURSE, OBEDIENCE, OIL, OPINIONS, OPTIMISM, OX, PARADISE, PETER’S DENIAL, PILATE, PLOUGH, PERCEPTION, POLITICS, PONDER, POOR, PORNOGRAPHY, PREPARE, PRIESTHOOD LINEAGE, PROCASTINATION, QUESTIONS, RAINBOW, RATED R, REMEMBER, RIB, ROCK, SACRAMENT, SATAN, SIMONY, SIN, SMALL THINGS, SONS OF PERDITION, SPANKINGS, SPEAKING, SPECULATING, SPIRIT, STEALING, SUCCOR, SUEING, SWEARING, TEMPLE, TESTIMONY, TEXTING, THANKFUL, LIGHT, TIME, TITHING, TREASURE, TREE, TRIALS, TRINITY, TRUST, UNIVERSAL ETHER, VAIN, VIPER, WATER, WILDERNESS, WORD OF WISDOM, WORK, WRITING,

A
ADULTERY, ANGELS, ANGER, APOSTASY, ARGUING, ASK, ATHEISTS
ADULTERY

SCRIPTURE
Thou shalt not commit adultery; and he that committeth adultery, and repenteth not, shall be cast out. D&C 42:24

But he that has committed adultery and repents with all his heart, and forsaketh it, and doeth it no more, thou shalt forgive; D&C 42:25

And verily I say unto you, as I have said before, he that looketh on a woman to lust after her, or if any shall commit adultery in their hearts, they shall not have the Spirit, but shall deny the faith and shall fear. D&C 63:16

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: Matt 5:27

But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. Matt 5:28

SIGN SEEKERS ARE ADULTERERS
"He who seeketh a sign is an adulterous person," declared the Prophet Joseph Smith; "and that principle is eternal, undeviating, and firm as the pillars of heaven; for whenever you see a man seeking after a sign, you may set it down that he is an adulterous man" –TPJS 157

ADULTEROUS WOMEN
Scribes and Pharisees laying a trap:

If he agreed with Moses that she should be stoned he would be running against the civil law prescribed by Rome. By the time of Jesus, it was no longer the practice to impose the death penalty for adultery. No penalty of death could be imposed without the sanction and approval of the Roman authorities, and in case of adultery the law of Rome did not prescribe death.   If he agreed to the stoning they could have said, “By what authority do you act in the role of the Sanhedrin?”
If he disagreed with Moses that she should not be stoned, he would have been accused of perverting the law, disrespect and departing from the practices of the past.   If he disagreed they could have said, “How can you claim to represent the law and to say that not one jot or title should pass”.
But he simply turned long enough to say what he said and then turned away so that he is no longer looking at the threatening crowd.

Adulteress Not Forgiven
This is not in any sense a pardon, nor is our Lord condoning an adulterous act. He does not say, 'Go in peace, thy sins are forgiven thee.' He merely declines to act as a magistrate, judge, witness, or participant of any kind in a case that legally and properly should come before an official tribunal of which he is not a member.  – Bruce R. McConkie

Note that the Lord did not forgive the woman of her serious sin. He commanded quietly, but forcefully. "Go, and sin no more." Even Christ cannot forgive one in sin. The woman had neither time nor opportunity to repent totally. When her preparation and repentance there complete she could hope for forgiveness, but not before then. –Miracle of Forgiveness


ANGLES

ANGELS DON’T HAVE RED HAIR
Once a woman claimed a revelation for the guidance of the Church. According to her account, a heavenly being appeared to her and personally gave the alleged instructions. The Prophet Joseph asked her the one question, "What was the color of the angel's hair?" And when her reply was "Red," the Prophet remarked: "There are no red-headed angels."


ANGER

THE LORD COULD HAVE BEEN ANGRY
It was in the “cool of the day” or probably late afternoon while Adam and Eve were walking among the trees of their garden home that they suddenly heard the voice of God. Notice the natural and unpretentious manner in which the Lord returned. He did not appear unexpectedly before them in a blinding blaze of thunderous indignation. Rather he spoke with a mild question.  “Where art thou?” Gen 3:9

JOSEPH F. SMITH'S SON WRITES ANGRY LETTER
One of Joseph F. Smith’s sons was playing out in front of the beehive house, still there. He was playing out at front, there were dirt roads then, and a bully comes along, mutilates him, and then pushes his face in the mud and holds it there until he almost suffocates. This was in February and close to valentines. So the boy goes inside and writes a valentine to the bully and on the valentine he writes every evil word he can think of that he ever heard or read. Wrote them all, put them in the envelope. But then made a fatal mistake, He switched valentines and sent the one he intended to go to the uncle to the bully. And the one he intended for the bully to his uncle. It reached rather quickly the desk of Joseph F. Smith. That morning at family prayer, He routinely had prayer. And then Joseph F kissed each of his children but he didn’t kiss the boy. And said I will see you in my office. He goes in and Joseph F writes for awhile and then turns on its style a large bible. Opens it and says come close. What does that say Willard? It says, swear not at all. Yes, now, and he turned to something else. What does that say; it says forgive 70 times 7. Yes that’s right. What does that say; this went on for twenty minutes. And then he said come here son. He embraced him and kissed him and that’s all. He said later, I never used a bad word again. – TGM

MAN SPANKING KID IN ANGER HURTS HIMSELF
I was once talking to a man in our ward in California who wore a watch that had an elastic band.  Each time he was angry with his children he would spank them and would in the process hurt himself as the elastic band would slap his wrist. Each time he would spank he would get pelted by his watch. He quickly learned his lesson and never spanked again. – Michael Hickman

QUOTES ABOUT ANGER
Do not teach your children never to be angry; teach them how to be angry.  ~Lyman Abbott

Life is too short to hold a grudge, also too long.  ~Robert Brault
For every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of happiness.  ~Author Unknown

Anger is one letter short of danger.  ~Author Unknown

People who fly into a rage always make a bad landing.  ~Will Rogers

The world needs anger.  The world often continues to allow evil because it isn't angry enough.  ~Bede Jarrett

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.  ~Buddha

The worst-tempered people I've ever met were people who knew they were wrong.  ~Wilson Mizner

When a man sends you an impudent letter, sit right down and give it back to him with interest ten times compounded, and then throw both letters in the wastebasket.  ~Elbert Hubbard



APOSTASY

Intellectual Apostasy
Someone once said to TGM, “I’ve never met someone who thought his way out of this religion. I have met quite a few who transgressed their way out and then found intellectual reasons to justify that.”
Not always true there are honest minded men who have serious doubts and problems and have to cope with them in the same way they arrived at them, namely intellectually. -TGM


ASK

UNJUST JUDGE AND IMPORTUNATE WIDOW
To show "that men ought always to pray, and not to faint."

What is the point of the story? Why would the Savior teach a parable like that? The point is, pray and don't faint; or, in the words of Joseph Smith, "Weary [the Lord] until he blesses you." There are places in modern scripture where the Lord commands someone not to pray further on a particular matter, where he says, "Trouble me no more." But in each case the context shows he had already given the answer, and he is saying, "Please take no or yes for an answer."   - TGM

ATHEISM

ATHEISM IS THE 4TH LARGEST RELIGION
An article in ‘The Economist’ declares, “there are at least 500 [million] declared non-believers in the world—enough to make atheism the fourth-biggest religion.” - The Economist, Nov. 3, 2007

WHY IS GOD THE DEFAULT POSITION?
I hate the term "atheist" since its premise and its structure are anti-god. I don't believe in god but I don't believe in Santa either. I am not an asantist and I am not an atheist. Neither am I an abigfootist or aunicornist. Why is god the default position?

ATHEISTS HAVE ABSOLUTE KNOWLEDGE?
"An atheist is one who believes he has absolute knowledge that there is no one who has absolute knowledge." Frederick Copelson.

ATHEISTS: BET ON GOD
Blaze Pascal, a famous mathmatition. A French philosopher once spoke of the wager. And his argument was something like this: Suppose you live your entire life on the assumption that God lives and that we will eventually meet him in a better world, suppose you bet on that as it were, and it turns out that with death comes the end and that there is no God and there is no life to come. What have you lost? Pascal's answer, nothing really. You have lived a significant life and you were mistaken on the question of God.
But suppose on the other hand you assume that there is no God and that all religious experience is a delusion and there is no life after death and you die, and low and behold there is a God and there is another world. What have you lost? Maybe everything. So since you have nothing to lose in committing to God and everything to lose in denying, bet on God. TGM

WORSE THAN ATHEISM
One dies and is buried, having never heard the Gospel of reconciliation; to the other the message of salvation is sent, he hears and embraces it, and is made the heir of eternal life. Shall the one become the partaker of glory and the other be consigned to hopeless perdition? Is there no chance for his escape? Sectarianism answers NONE. Such an idea is worse than atheism! – Joseph Smith

There are no atheists in Fox Holes.

"There are no atheists in foxholes" isn't an argument against atheism; it's an argument against foxholes.  ~James Morrow

Atheism: A non-prophet organization

Someone once observed that atheists don’t find God for the same reason why bank robbers don’t find police men. –TGM


APPROPRIATE QUESTIONS TO ASK A DISBELIEVER:
  1. What would you accept as evidence?
  2. What would be convincing to you?
  3. What would have to happen in order for you to believe what I'm saying?
And if he answers nothing, then change the subject. ---TGM

B
BAPTISM, BETHLEHEM, BLESSINGS, BLIND, BLOOD, BOMB, BRIGHTEST SPIRITS, BRUISED,
BAPTISM

THE WORD BAPTISM
"The word baptize come from the Greek word Baptismo which means to immerse. There is a different Greek word, Rantismo which means to sprinkle. John did not Rantize people, he baptized people." JSPM

BAPTISM IS RELATED TO THE ATONEMENT
Joseph Smith once said, “The Atonement is the single most important thing that has ever occurred in the entire history of created things. It is the rock foundation upon which the gospel and all other things rest. All other things are appendages to it.”

KINGDOM OF GOD IS NOT OF THIS WORLD
The kingdom of God is not of this world.
Some people might say, “How strange a thing that God would require that we should be baptized by water.” Why would God require such a thing?
My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. -John 18:36

BAPTISM IS SYMBOLIC
3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death; that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection;
6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.
7 For he that is dead to sin is freed from sin.
Rom 6:3-7

NICODEMUS:
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus saith unto him, how can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. - John 3

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.
Gal 6:8

“For the gate by which ye should enter is repentance and baptism by water; and then cometh a remission of your sins by fire and by the Holy Ghost.
“And then are ye in this straight and narrow path which leads to eternal life” - 2 Ne. 31:17-18

JESUS CHRIST BAPTIZED
Christ taught that everyone must be baptized. He was himself obedient to this law.

7 Know ye not that he was holy? But notwithstanding he being holy, he showeth unto the children of men that, according to the flesh he humbleth himself before the Father, and witnesseth unto the Father that he would be obedient unto him in keeping his commandments. - 2 Ne 31:7

It is amazing to me, in 3rd Nephi 11 when Christ shows himself to the Nephrites and Lamanites that he first introduces himself and immediately calls Nephi forward and gives him power to baptize. Within that chapter and the next, it is interesting to see how many times the subject of baptism is brought up. He makes it so clear that the Doctrine of the Father is Baptism.

THE BAPTISMAL COVENANTS AND COMMITMENTS
This declaration by Alma at the Waters of Mormon still stands as the most complete scriptural statement on record as to what the newly baptized commit to do and be.
• Coming into the fold of God.       
• Being called his people.       
• Bearing one another's burdens.       
• Mourning with those that mourn.       
• Comforting those who stand in need of comfort.       
• Standing as witnesses of God at all times and in all things and in all places.       
• Entering into a covenant to serve God and keep his commandments. Mosiah 18:8 - Jeffery R. Holland

President Brigham Young said: “All Latter-day Saints enter the new and everlasting covenant when they enter this Church. They covenant to cease sustaining, upholding and cherishing the kingdom of the Devil and the kingdoms of this world. They enter the new and everlasting covenant to sustain the Kingdom of God and no other kingdom. They take a vow of the most solemn kind, before the heavens and earth, … that they will sustain truth and righteousness instead of wickedness and falsehood, and build up the Kingdom of God, instead of the kingdoms of this world” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young [1997], 62-63).

THE LORD’S BLESSINGS:
1. Pour out his Spirit upon us.
2. Redeem us.
3. Number us with those of the First Resurrection.
4. Grant us eternal life.

WHO CAN BAPTIZE?
Worthy Priests and up. The duties of a priest are to teach preach expound exhort and baptize.

STORY OF CORNELIOUS:
Acts 10:5-8
Cornelius is instructed to send to Joppa for the Apostle Peter; again, note the use of local authority. The angel could not baptize him; Peter could.  Joseph Smith said, “No wonder the angel told good old Cornelius that he must send for Peter to learn how to be saved: Peter could baptize, and angels could not, so long as there were legal officers in the flesh holding the keys of the kingdom, or the authority of the priesthood. There is one evidence still further on this point, and that is that Jesus himself when he appeared to Paul on his way to Damascus, did not inform him how he could be saved. He had set in the church first Apostles, and secondly prophets, for the work of the ministry,
perfecting of the saints, etc.; and as the grand rule of heaven was that nothing should ever be done on earth without revealing the secret to his servants the prophets, agreeably to Amos 3:7,

BAPTISM AND SACRAMENT ARE ROCKS!
Baptism
Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and whoso buildeth upon this buildeth upon my rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them.
And whoso shall declare more or less than this, and establish it for my doctrine, the same cometh of evil, and is not built upon my rock; but he buildeth upon a sandy foundation and the gates of hell stand open to receive such when the floods come and the winds beat upon them. -3 Nephi 11:39-41.  
Sacrament
And I give unto you a commandment that ye shall do these things. And if ye shall always do these things blessed are ye, for ye are built upon my rock.
But whoso among you shall do more or less than these are not built upon my rock, but are built upon a sandy foundation; and when the rain descends, and the floods come, and the winds blow, and beat upon them, they shall fall, and the gates of hell are ready open to receive them. -3 Nephi 18:12-14.

BAPTISM IS A LAW
The chemist must frequently produce the gas hydrogen. To do it, an acid must be poured upon fragments of certain metals. In thus producing the gas, the chemist obeys law. The astronomer who studies the stars discovers that by using a piece of glass properly ground, his powers of vision appear to be strengthened. He therefore prepares such lenses for his telescopes, and thus obeys law. The surgeon uses antiseptics in the treatment of wounds because he has learned that such application will destroy germ life, and thus the surgeon obeys law. The electrician has found that by winding a wire in a certain manner around iron and rotating it near a magnet, electric currents are set up. He builds dynamos according to such principles, and thus shows his obedience to law.
It must be noted that the scientist does not know just why acid added to metal produces hydrogen, or why a certain curved lens brings the stars nearer; or why certain chemicals destroy low forms of life or why wire wound in a certain way when rotated in the magnetic field will produce electricity. Nature requires, without volunteering and explanation, that to produce hydrogen, see the stars, destroy germs and produce the electric current, certain invariable laws must be obeyed.
Baptism is essentially of the same nature. To enter the Kingdom of God, a person must be baptized. Just why baptism should be the ordinance that opens the door, no man knows. It undoubtedly has high symbolic value; but the symbolism might be expressed in many other ways. All that man can do is to obey. He, who is baptized, enters the Kingdom of God. He who throws acid on metal enters the kingdom of hydrogen; he who grinds the lens right, enters the kingdom of the stars; he who uses antiseptics right, enters the kingdom of lower life, and he who winds the wire correctly, enters the kingdom of electricity. – John A. Widtsoe

BETHLEHEM

  • Hebrew: House of Bread
  • Aramaic: House of Flesh
  • Also known as The City of David.
  • 5-6 miles south of Jerusalem.
  • Time of Jesus estimates 300 people. – TGM
  • “It was also the census headquarters or quarters for record keeping.” (Luke 2:4-5)

“Hardly another place in Palestine is so productive as is the area of Bethlehem. It remains to this day, a center for raising olives, figs, grapes, corn, cattle and sheep. It is the richest and most fertile area of the land of Palestine.” -TGM

BLACKS AND THE PRIESTHOOD

JOSEPH FREEMAN FIRST BLACK MAN
“You look around today; why didn’t we have trains, and buses and airplanes 200 years ago? Men had intelligence then, but we didn’t invent those things. There is just a time that God allows knowledge to flow, and it doesn’t come until the right time comes.” First black priesthood holder- Joseph Freeman.

BRUCE R. MCKONKIE STANDS WITH PROPHET
There are statements in our literature by the early Brethren that we have interpreted to mean that the Negroes would not receive the priesthood in mortality. I have said the same things, and people write me letters and say, "You said such and such, and how is it now that we do such and such?" All I can say is that it is time disbelieving people repented and got in line and believed in a living, modern prophet. Forget everything that I have said, or what President Brigham Young or President George Q. Cannon or whoever has said in days past that is contrary to the present revelation. We spoke with a limited understanding and without the light and knowledge that now has come into the world.   
We get our truth and light line upon line and precept upon precept (2 Ne. 28:30; Isa. 28:9-10; D&C 98:11-12; 128:21). We have now added a new flood of intelligence and light on this particular subject, and it erases all the darkness and all the views and all the thoughts of the past. They don't matter anymore.
It doesn't make a particle of difference what anybody ever said about the Negro matter before the first day of June 1978. It is a new day and a new arrangement, and the Lord has now given the revelation that sheds light out into the world on this subject. As to any slivers of light or any particles of darkness of the past, we forget about them. We now do what meridian Israel did when the Lord said the gospel should go to the Gentiles. We forget all the statements that limited the gospel to the house of Israel, and we start going to the Gentiles. (Acts 10) -Bruce R. McConkie

JOSEPH SMITH ON THE NEGRO
Elder [Orson] Hyde inquired Joseph Smith about the situation of the Negro…”They have souls, and are subjects of salvation.”– Joseph Smith

OUR ENEMIES DON’T CARE ABOUT NEGROS
There are some who have already closed their minds to truth and reason. You cannot prove anything to anybody who is determined not to believe a thing.
Consider the foolishness and the hypocrisy of their position: they are denouncing the LDS church for not allowing the Negro to hold the Priesthood, yet, they claim that there is no authenticity nor value in the Priesthood. So, if they were really concerned about the welfare of the Negro, they should be grateful that the LDS church does not allow the Negro to partake of such humbuggery.
Their objective, we see, is not justice for the Negro, but persecution of the LDS Church. They are partakers of the spirit of Satan. – Mormonism and the Negro, John J. Stewart

FALSE STATEMENTS AGAINST JOSEPH SMITH
Joseph is reputed to have taught that some of the less courageous souls in pre-mortality approached the Father and pled not to come to this earth, reasoning that they lacked the faith to endure mortal testing. Joseph is also quoted as saying that Adam came from another planet as "an immortalized being" and that those who were fence-sitters and "neutral spirits" were sent to earth cursed with a darker skin (Anson Call, n.d.). These statements are all false. They are contrary to what the revelations say, are at odds with what Joseph himself taught, and in one instance even contradict a formal proclamation of the First Presidency (Joseph F. Smith et al., 1909, pp. 75-81). Written on this document, in the readily recognizable handwriting of President Joseph Fielding Smith, is the statement "Not to be considered Church doctrine." Joseph Fielding Smith then wrote his initials next to his statement. -Remembering Joseph,

GORDON B. HINCKLEY ON BLACKS


BLESSINGS

Comments like "I don't want to lose the blessings of the Lord so I had better continue to pay tithing" are evidence of worshipping the blessings and not the Lord who supplies them.
Job's heart was not set upon the blessings of the Lord but was centered on the Lord Himself. Thus, when the blessings ran out for Job and suffering came, he did not give up hope but continued to worship his God as he did before…Like Job, our focus must be on the root, not the fruit.- Are We Special? P. 75-76

I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise. D&C 82:10
Is this an, "I scratch your back , you scratch mine?" He becomes like a genie in a bottle grating us wishes. We have rubbed the lamp and now He has to fulfill His part of the contract. No one who rubs the lamp ever cares about the genie in these stories, but only about what the genie can do for them, indeed must do for them. - Are We Special? P. 86


A BLESSING NOT REALIZED BECAUSE ANXIETY
“Every man and woman who walks in the light of the Lord can see and understand these things for themselves; but through our anxiety, and over desire to have our own way, we often swerve and turn to the right or to the left of the true line of our duty. How often have we sealed blessings of health and life upon our children and companions in the name of Jesus Christ and by the authority of the Holy Priesthood of the Son of God, and yet our faith and prayers did not succeed in accomplishing the desires of our hearts. Why is this? In many instances our anxiety is so great that we do not pause to know the spirit of revelation and its operations upon the human mind. We have anxiety instead of faith. When a man prophesies by the power of the Holy Ghost, his words will be fulfilled as sure as the Lord lives; but if he has anxiety in his heart, it swerves him from the thread of the Holy Gospel, from the true thread of revelation, so that he is liable to err, and he prophesies, but it does not come to pass, he lays his hands upon the sick, but they are not healed. It is in consequence of not being completely moulded to the will of God. Do we not realize that this is so? And do we not realize that we should constantly strive to live in the counsel and light of God day by day, and hour by hour? If we do this we shall certainly make sure to ourselves a celestial inheritance.” President Brigham Young

REPEAT IN GIVING BLESSINGS
There were times when he had to give repeat blessings. Jedediah M. Grant had dyspepsia; perhaps what we would now call a stomach ulcer. He would feel better for a time when the Prophet administered to him, and then the pressures would arise, things would eat on him, and he would be back in the same condition. The Prophet one day said, "Brother Grant, if I could always be with you, I could cure you."

SCRIPTURES
Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. - James 5:14-15

And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed [them]. Mark 6:13
And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed [them]. Mark 6:5
Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick with divers diseases brought them unto him; and he laid his hands on every one of them, and healed them. Luke 4:40
And he laid [his] hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. Luke 13:13
Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid [their] hands on them. Acts 6:6
Then laid they [their] hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost. Acts 8:17
And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid [their] hands on them, they sent [them] away. Acts 13:3
And when Paul had laid [his] hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. Acts 19:6
And it came to pass, that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and of a bloody flux: to whom Paul entered in, and prayed, and laid his hands on him, and healed him. Acts 28:8

BLESSINGS AND ORDINATIONS
Priesthood Ordinances and Blessings
Priesthood ordinances are sacred acts given by the Lord and performed by the authority of the priesthood. Priesthood blessings are given by the authority of the priesthood for healing, comfort, and encouragement. Brethren who perform ordinances and blessings should prepare themselves by living according to gospel principles and striving to be guided by the Holy Spirit. They should perform each ordinance and blessing in a dignified manner and comply with the following requirements; the ordinance should be:
1.  Performed in the name of Jesus Christ.
2.  Performed by the authority of the priesthood.
3.  Performed with any necessary procedures, such as using specified words or using consecrated oil.
4.  Authorized by the designated priesthood leader who holds the proper keys, if necessary.
Ordinances that require priesthood leader authorization are naming and blessing children, performing baptisms and confirmations, conferring the priesthood and ordaining to a priesthood office, blessing and passing the sacrament, and dedicating graves.
The ordinances and blessings explained in this section will help fathers serve as patriarchs in their families.

Naming and Blessing Children
“Every member of the church of Christ having children is to bring them unto the elders before the church, who are to lay their hands upon them in the name of Jesus Christ, and bless them in his name” (D&C 20:70). In conformity with this revelation, only worthy men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood may participate in naming and blessing children. The ordinance of naming and blessing children requires authorization from the presiding authority.
When blessing a baby, men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood gather in a circle and hold the baby in their hands. When blessing an older child, brethren place their hands lightly on the child’s head. The person who gives the blessing:
1.  Addresses Heavenly Father.
2.  States that the blessing is given by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
3.  Gives the child a name.
4.  Gives a priesthood blessing as the Spirit directs.
5.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Baptism
Under the direction of the presiding authority, a worthy priest or man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood may perform a baptism. To do so, he:
1.  Stands in the water with the person who will be baptized.
2.  For convenience and safety holds the person’s right wrist with his left hand; the person being baptized holds the left wrist of the one performing the baptism with his or her left hand.
3.  Raises his right arm to the square.
4.  States the person’s full name and says, “Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen” (D&C 20:73).
5.  Has the person hold his or her nose with the right hand for convenience; the one performing the baptism places his right hand high on the person’s back and immerses the person completely, including the person’s clothing.
6.  Helps the person come up out of the water.
Two priests or men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood witness each baptism to be sure it is performed properly. The baptism must be repeated if the words are not spoken exactly as given in Doctrine and Covenants D&C 20:73 or if part of the person’s body or clothing was not immersed completely. The person being baptized and the person performing the ordinance are to wear white clothing that is not transparent when wet.

Confirmation
Converts who are age nine or older and those who are eight whose parents are both nonmembers are confirmed in a sacrament meeting (see D&C 20:41). Eight-year-old children may be confirmed immediately after the baptism at the baptism location if at least one parent is a member of the Church and both parents give permission for the baptism and confirmation. Under the direction of the branch presidency, one or more men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood may perform this ordinance. They place their hands lightly on the person’s head. The one who performs the ordinance:
1.  States the person’s full name.
2.  States that the ordinance is performed by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
3.  Confirms the person a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
4.  Bestows the gift of the Holy Ghost by saying, “Receive the Holy Ghost.”
5.  Gives a priesthood blessing as the Spirit directs.
6.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Conferring the Priesthood and Ordaining to Priesthood Offices
The branch president oversees the conferral of the Aaronic Priesthood and ordinations to the offices of deacon, teacher, and priest. Before a person is ordained to an office in the Aaronic Priesthood, he must be interviewed by the branch president and found worthy. Also, he must be sustained in a branch sacrament meeting. With the authorization of the branch president, a priest may confer the Aaronic Priesthood upon another person and ordain him to an Aaronic Priesthood office.

Conferring the Priesthood
To confer the priesthood or ordain a person to a priesthood office, one or more men who hold the required priesthood and who have been authorized by the presiding authority place their hands lightly on the person’s head. The one who performs the ordinance:
1.  Calls the person by his full name.
2.  States the authority (Aaronic or Melchizedek Priesthood) by which the ordination is being performed.
3.  Confers the Aaronic or Melchizedek Priesthood, unless it has been conferred earlier.
4.  Ordains the person to an office in the Aaronic or Melchizedek Priesthood and bestows the rights, powers, and authority of that office.
5.  Gives a priesthood blessing as the Spirit directs.
6.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Sacrament
The prayer on the bread follows:
“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 has given them; that they may always have his Spirit to be with them. Amen” (D&C 20:77 and Moroni 4).

The prayer on the water follows:
“O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this [water] to the souls of all those who drink of it, that they may do it in remembrance of the blood of thy Son, which was shed for them; that they may witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they do always remember him, that they may have his Spirit to be with them. Amen” (D&C 20:79 and Moroni 5).
The sacrament should be cleared from the table as soon as possible after the meeting. Any bread that remains may be used for food.
Blessing and passing the sacrament requires authorization from the presiding authority.

Consecrating Oil
One man (or more) who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood consecrates pure olive oil for its holy purpose of anointing the sick or afflicted. The one who consecrates the oil:
1.  Holds an open container of olive oil.
2.  Addresses our Heavenly Father.
3.  States that he is acting by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
4.  Consecrates the oil (not the container) and sets it apart for anointing the sick and afflicted.
5.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Administering to the Sick
Only men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood may administer to the sick or afflicted. Normally, two or more administer together, but one may do it alone. If consecrated oil is not available, a man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood may give a blessing by the authority of the priesthood.
A father who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood should administer to sick members of his family. He may ask another man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood to assist him.
Administering to the sick has two parts: (1) anointing with oil and (2) sealing the anointing.

Anointing with Oil
One man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood anoints the person who is sick. To do so, he:
1.  Puts a drop of consecrated oil on the person’s head.
2.  Places his hands lightly on the person’s head and calls the person by his or her full name.
3.  States that he is anointing the person by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
4.  States that he is anointing with oil that has been consecrated for anointing and blessing the sick and afflicted.
5.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Sealing the Anointing
Normally, two or more men who hold the Melchizedek Priesthood place their hands lightly on the head of the person who is sick. One of the men seals the anointing. To do so, he:
1.  Calls the person by his or her full name.
2.  States that he is sealing the anointing by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
3.  Gives a blessing as the Spirit directs.
4.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.

Father’s Blessings and Blessings of Comfort and Counsel

1.  Calls the person by his or her full name.
2.  States that he is giving the blessing by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
3.  Gives a blessing as the Spirit directs.
4.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.



Dedicating Graves
A person who dedicates a grave must hold the Melchizedek Priesthood and must be authorized by the priesthood officer who conducts the service.
To dedicate a grave, he:
1.  Addresses Heavenly Father.
2.  States that he is dedicating the grave by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood.
3.  Dedicates and consecrates the burial plot as the resting place for the body of the deceased.
4.  Where appropriate, prays that the place will be hallowed and protected until the Resurrection.
5.  Asks the Lord to comfort the family and expresses other thoughts as the Spirit directs.
6.  Closes in the name of Jesus Christ.
If the family prefers, a person (preferably a man who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood) may offer a graveside prayer rather than a dedicatory prayer.



BLINDNESS

MAN BORN BLIND BECAUSE OF SIN - John 9:11
  1. A long standing Jewish tradition was if there is affliction in life, according to the punitive theory of evil, it is because of sin.
  2. That young man could have been a sinner before his birth a hint of a Jewish tradition that there was indeed a pre-mortal life.
The fact that they said, “Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out.” Was in direct violation of the Law. The law states, “Thou shalt not curse the deaf, nor put a stumbling block before the blind, but shalt fear thy God: I am the Lord.” – Leviticus 19:14

SMALL THINGS MAY BLIND US TO THE TRUTH
Even something as small as a man’s thumb, when held very near the eye, can blind him to the very large sun. Yet the sun is still there. Blindness is brought upon the man by himself. When we draw other things too close, placing them first, we obscure our vision of heaven.

There is no worse blind man, than one that can see. – Unknown

MOTE AND BEAM
3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.-Matt 7:3-5, Luke 6:41-42

THE BLIND LEAD THE BLIND
14 Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.-Matt 15:14, Luke 6:39

Quick thought: Anything going IN the eye (Sin) can be very painful. Anything going out of the eye or the clearing of the eye can be very painful (Repentance). It is only through the proper authority that we can find healing.

BLOOD

THE BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST
All persons born into this world are designed to the order a blood type. Type “A” Positive and so forth. A person’s blood type becomes a crucial matter when a blood transfusion is necessary. If an individual is transfused with the wrong blood type, a reaction that severely compromises the immune system can result. Jesus Christ is the only person whose pure blood can sanctify all persons.

BOMB

HAROLD B. LEE:
President Lee relied on inspiration in many situations. During one session of general conference, the City Commissioner of Public Safety received a phone call: "There is a bomb in the Tabernacle and it's going off in twenty minutes." Click. He sent the bomb squad to the Tabernacle.
A policeman came down through the choir loft, leaned over to President Lee, and said, "We've had a tip that there is a bomb in the building set to go off in five minutes."
President Lee sat for a moment, then turned to the man and said, "There is no bomb in here. Relax."
The policeman went out of the choir loft and reported, "He says there is no bomb in there."
The head of the bomb squad said, "He says there is no bomb? Who is he?"
President Lee had not only put his own reputation on the line, but also the lives of about eight thousand people in the Tabernacle. What if there had been a bomb? But he was certain there was not. -TGM

HOWARD W. HUNTER:  FEBRUARY 7, 1993
The most extreme example happened in the Marriott Center. A man (Cody Judy) stood up to the pulpit with a briefcase and threatened President Hunter that he would detonate a bomb unless President Hunter read a statement.
President Hunter stood before a full Marriott Center audience and said, "I won't."
"You will," threatened the man again, "or I will set off a bomb." President Hunter refused; he was both steel and velvet. The audience began to sing "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet," distracting the man and the authorities took him away. President Hunter then continued his speech with barely a pause.

But Judy says he never claimed to have a bomb. He said he had a B.O.M. (pronounced "bomb") -- a copy of the Book of Mormon. "We constantly use metaphoric and symbolic meaning to many things in a church meeting," he writes. "What do we do with all the seminary students who call out they have a B.O.M.; or are asked by their instructors if they brought their B.O.M’s? Prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law?"

JOKE: “Whenever I travel I always let the Airport security guards know I have a BOM in my bag and ask if they would like to know more.” – Cougar Forum

Judy said that God told him the incident was necessary to teach a lesson about constitutional rights to free speech. "People haven't realized this yet, but they will soon, that what I am doing is a service for them," he said. "What I've been given is of God and that will be proved. An injustice must have happened for justice to come around."

Cody Judy is running for United States President in 2012 http://www.codyjudy.us  Judy is no stranger to political campaigns, having garnered 24 votes in his previous campaigns.

BREAD

SARAH PROVIDING BREAD
“Just providing bread for a family in that time period. Sorting the grain, cleaning it, parching it, milling it, making the bread, baking it.  For a woman around 600 BC with about 6 dependants would have been 3 hours a day. Just for providing the bread.” (Journey of Faith DVD)

PRIESTHOOD POWER AND BREAD
"I doubt that any of you priesthood holders come home from fast and testimony meeting and attempt to use your priesthood powers to make some tasty food miraculously and instantaneously appear at your table." – JSPM


BRIGHTEST SPIRITS

RESERVED THE STRONGEST CHILDREN
God's ammunition is not exhausted. His brightest spirits are held in reserve for the latter times. – Boyd K. Packer

The Lord has reserved some of his strongest children to come forth in these challenging times. We did not come into this world accidentally, but by a certain order. Men and women have been kept back by the Lord for thousands of years to come into the world under these peculiar circumstances when the hardest of difficulties would have to be encountered, and the strongest of men and women would be required; -Lorenzo Snow

Some of the brightest spirits who dwell in the bosom of the Father are making their appearance among this people of whom the Lord will make a royal priesthood, a peculiar nation that he can own and bless, talk with, and associate with. – Brigham Young

Some of these children whom we teach in our Primaries, whom we lead, are these very bright spirits whom President Brigham Young said were being sent to the earth in our time and in our day. – Howard W. Hunter

If there were 1 billion Latter-day Saints that would still be one one-hundredth of the billions who have lived or about to live on this earth. That’s just a little tiny percentage of one percent now in the kingdom.
You reserve your best; we are talking in battle terms; for the last and crucial battle. -TGM

BRUISED HEEL

ACCORDING TO DOCTORS
A bruised heel can be caused by either a sudden impact (such as landing heavily) or repetitive pounding. If you catch heel pain early and rest then it should recover quite quickly - within a few days. If you ignore the first onset of pain and the heel gets damaged beyond easy repair then this is a very difficult injury to treat.

DREYERS ICE CREAM
I worked for Dreyer’s Ice Cream and sometimes I pull heavy carts. If I’m not wearing the correct and proper shoes to shield my ankle and I am pulling that cart, sometimes if I am not careful the cart will slam into my heel! My progress is stopped, I feel like cussing and sometimes I feel like passing out. The rest of the day I am limping and sore. It is a setback.

In the process of getting one's heel bruised is the outcome of his true character. "It might well be stated as a rule of human nature that when a man reaches his greatest extremity, a moment of extreme danger, pain, emotion, or critical need, a point in life which is marked by imminent destruction or death, the true nature of his soul becomes evident." Is he basically thoughtful or selfish, courageous or cowardly, self-absorbed or concerned with others? During the most trying and difficult circumstances of life, an individual's "words mirror his innermost soul. His speech betrays what his character is really like-the quality of his concerns, his compassion, his love-the whole focus or thrust of his life, whether noble or mean, depraved or exalted" (Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles, 185).


Put on the whole armor of God. Ephesians 6:10-18

The statement in Genesis that Satan will have power to bruise our heel is not a statement that we will always be walking around with a "Bruised Heel" but that "The devil has no power over us only as we permit him. The moment we revolt at anything which comes from God, the devil takes power" – Joseph Smith

it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. -Gen 3:15

C
CALLINGS, CATHOLICS, CHARACTER, CHARITY, CIMETER, CIRCUMCISION, CLEANLINESS, COMMON JUDGE, CONDUCTING, CONVERSION, CROSS-REFERENCING, CRUXIFIXTION, CRYING


CALLINGS

"Let's not perpetuate the myth that every person must always agree to a calling." –Bruce R. McConkie

"Exaltation is achieved by keeping covenants, not by holding high position." Boyd K. Packer
Scott

Callings provide Pharisees the signs of assurance they need to feel special and chose. - Are we special pg 61

Balance does not mean doing everything. It means learning to let some things go and to sometimes say no. Are We Special? P. 80

OVERWHELMED
Do you feel overwhelmed? We have far more important things to do than we can possibly accomplish. You know that feeling when there is more weight on your shoulders than you think you can possibly bear far more questions than answers. That is a test to teach the importance of establishing priorities.
Have you ever had the feeling that the wall are closing in, that you are not in control, and that you simply can’t do it? Those feelings of frustration are not from the Lord. They are caused by Satan. He wants you to bolt and run when you encounter a difficult growth challenge. – Richard G. Scott

ASPIRING
"Everyone should aspire only to magnify his own office and calling." – Joseph Smith

"Referring to men with significant callings within the Church, "aspiring men, ‘great big Elders' as he called them" – Joseph Smith

"He spoke of the disposition of many men to consider the lower offices in the Church dishonorable, and to look with jealous eyes upon the standing of others who are called to preside over them; that it was the folly and nonsense of the human heart for a person to be aspiring to other stations than those to which they are appointed of God for them to occupy; that it was better for individuals to magnify their respective callings, and wait patiently till God shall say to them, "Come up higher." (HC 4:603.)   -Joseph Smith

And he put forth a parable to those which were bidden, when he marked how they chose out the chief rooms; saying unto them,
When thou art bidden of any [man] to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honorable man than thou be bidden of him;
And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room.
But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee.
For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. - Luke 14:7


CATHOLICS

1. Catholicism was the standard and disseminator of moral standards in Europe and other parts of the world.
2. It kept alive for 2,000 years the idea of Jesus as the Savior of the world.
3. The New Testament likely would have not existed without the Catholic Church.
4. Music as we know it in the West began its development in the Catholic Mass
5. Art in the West was kept alive and developed mostly throughout the Church.
6. Universities were essentially a catholic invention.
7. Catholicism engendered a mindset that made modern science possible.
8. Monks copied books, and kept learning alive during times of illiteracy.

CHARACTER

TRUE CHARACTER IS FOUND IN EXTEMITIES
"It might well be stated as a rule of human nature that when a man reaches his greatest extremity, a moment of extreme danger, pain, emotion, or critical need, a point in life which is marked by imminent destruction or death, the true nature of his soul becomes evident." Is he basically thoughtful or selfish, courageous or cowardly, self-absorbed or concerned with others? During the most trying and difficult circumstances of life, an individual's "words mirror his innermost soul. His speech betrays what his character is really like-the quality of his concerns, his compassion, his love-the whole focus or thrust of his life, whether noble or mean, depraved or exalted" (Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles, 185).

In Christ’s greatest extremity what did he say? What were his statements and what was his true identity?
  1. "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do." Luke 23:34
  2. "Today thou shalt be with me in paradise" Luke 23:43
  3. "Woman, behold thy son! Behold thy mother!" John 19:26-27
  4. "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? That is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"  Matt 27:46, Mark 15:34
  5. "I thirst." John 19:28
  6. "It is finished" John 19:30
  7. " Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit" Luke 23:46
As Jesus wrought the Atonement, He maintained prayerful communication with His Father, both in Gethsemane (see Luke 22:39-44) and on Calvary's cross (see Luke 23:33-34, 46). - Elder Russell M. Nelson

CIMETER

The term cimeter (spelling standardized in more recent English as scimitar) was, as Webster’s 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language defines it, “a short sword with a convex edge.”
Military historian Ross Hassig has identified a curved weapon known from post-classic Mesoamerican art which he calls a short “sword.”
Approximately 20 inches long, this weapon was a “curved wooden sword with obsidian blades along each edge.”
Like the Macana or Macuahuitl sword used by the Aztecs, it had a deadly cutting edge. In contrast to crushing weapons like clubs, it, “carried more cutting surface, and each blade was backed by the wooden base that provided direct support; it was an excellent slasher and yet the forward curve of the sword retained some aspects of a crusher when used curved end forward.” – Newsletter of the Neil A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship Vol. 28 Number 1 2008

CIRCUMCISION

“Why this choice? One example of an explanation is that this is a mark at the very source of life.”
If a child has lived eight days then he has lived through a least one Sabbath.” TGM

CLEANLINESS

Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God-D&C 88:119


ANGELS OFFENDED BY BAD SMELLS
Angels offended by bad smells among mortals.
Speaking of beautiful things brings to mind something the Prophet Joseph Smith once said when in conversation with some of his intimate friends.
They were remarking on the differences in people and their modes of living, and he said this: "If we knew how often the angels are prevented from visiting us, by day or by night by the bad smells around, we would labor hard to have everything sweet and clean as possible."
These may not be the exact words he used, but they convey his meaning. I often think of this.
Note: When Martha Smith Harris, the sister of Joseph F. Smith, saw in vision both her father and mother, and conversed with them. She said, "Their breath smelled like sweet ointment."
By way of contrast, Parley P. Pratt speaks of evil spirits, and observes: "Some of these foul spirits, when possessing a person, will cause a disagreeable smell about the person thus possessed, which will be plainly manifest to the senses of those about him, even though the person thus afflicted should be washed and change his clothes every few minutes."

COMMON JUDGE

ACUTALLY NEEDS TO BE UNCOMMON
Actually he has to be uncommon. He has to be distinct from and carry a heavier load than the others, in the role of acting for, calling for, speaking for, and performing blessings for, the living God.

QUALITIES OF A BISHOP
1TIMOTHY 3:1-7
1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behavior, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

CONDUCTING

Welcome
Visitors?
Announcments?
Lesson?
Prayer?

CONVERSION

THE POWER OF CONVERSION
Present membership of the church is over 10 million. If as President Hinckley pled and advocated, every person in the church this year brought 1 other person into the church, how many converts would we have in 1 year. 10 million.
If the next year everybody did it again including the new 10 million converts. How many converts would we have? 20 million.
Now you do that approximately 14 times; this is exponential growth, and you have converted everybody in the world and then each of the persons who has been converted goes to the temple and does approximately 40 names and then you’ve taken care of everybody back to Adam.
That’s how powerful numerically, actually getting 1 convert per person per year could be if we only did it.

CROSS-REFERENCEING

It took 12 years and the help of over 600 people to complete. Some were experts in Greek, Latin, and Hebrew or had a knowledge of ancient scriptures. But most were ordinary, faithful members of the Church.
The spirit of inspiration brooded over the work.
The project would have been impossible without the computer.
A remarkable system was designed to organize tens of thousands of footnotes.
- Packer, Boyd K., On Zion's Hill, October 2005

CRUXIFICTION

Jesus has admitted to the high priest and Sanhedrin that he is the Son of the Blessed. What better way to have him die in a way that proves that he's not blessed. That he's cursed. Deuteronomy 21: 22-23 and Galatians 3:13 says, "Cursed is he that hangs on a tree." Perhaps it was a calculated move to make sure that it will be advertised to everyone, "this Jesus who claims he's the messiah is not blessed, he's cursed. And God has rejected him"

CRYING

Tears are the safety valve of the heart when too much pressure is laid on it.  ~Albert Smith

Tears are God’s gift to us.  Our holy water.  They heal us as they flow.  ~Rita Schiano, Sweet Bitter Love, 1997, published by The Reed Edwards Company

Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.  ~Steel Magnolias

The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea.  ~Isak Dinesen


D
DEATH, DEBT, DINOSAURS, DISCERNMENT, DOVE, DUST
DEATH

NOONE IS REALLY DEAD
No one is really dead. Those who are in the spirit world are, we are taught by the prophets, more alive than some of us. Elder Melvin J. Ballard use to say, “They have every feeling intensified, spiritually. And as for their being dead and gone, no. they are not gone either. For the prophets teach us that the spirit world is not in some remote galaxy, it is here. It is near.

WHY DO WE CHOOSE DEATH?
Why do we choose death rather than life? We do! And then try to convince others that it’s really life! Alternative Life-styles or alternative Death-styles! They minister death to our best intellectual faculties, to our emotional life and even to our creative powers.

THOSE DYING ARE NOT ALONE
There is no sting nor gloom nor inconsolable sorrow about the departure of such persons. Holy angels are around their bedside to administer unto them. The Spirit of God rests down upon them, and His messengers are near them to introduce them to those who are on the other side of the veil. - George Q. Cannon

DEATH IS NOT THE END
In gospel grammar, death is not an exclamation point, merely a comma.

May I say for the consolation of those who mourn, and for the comfort and guidance of all of us, that no righteous man is ever taken before his time. In the case of the faithful saints, they are simply transferred to other fields of labor. The Lord's work goes on in this life, in the world of spirits, and in the kingdoms of glory where men go after their resurrection. -Joseph Fielding Smith in his remarks at the funeral services for Elder Richard L. Evans


DEBT

It is much better that a plastic credit card should perish than a family dwindle and perish in debt. – Joseph B. Wirthlin

5 STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM:
  1. Pay your tithing.
  2. Spend less than you earn.
  3. Learn to save.
  4. Honor your financial obligations.
  5. Teach your children to follow your example.
-Joseph B. Wirthlin

1. MANAGE INCOME & EXPENSES (BUDGET)
A. Live within a budget: monitor expenses (tithing, taxes, insurance, housing, utilities, groceries, personal care, clothing, transportation, medical, education, recreation, major purchases, other?)
B. Spend less (use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without): Review spending periodically to see what can be cut
C. Earn additional income, if possible.

2. PREPARE FOR EMERGENCIES
A. Protect against losses with insurance (life insurance, Medical insurance, property insurance, liability insurance)
B. Build up a cash reserve to cover six months of expenses
C. Follow food-storage and emergency preparedness guidance.

3. MANAGE DEBT
A. Pay responsibly (avoid late fees)
B. Pay down highest interest debt first (and fast)
C. Consolidate debt if you can reduce rates
D. As one debt is paid off, shift those payments to other debts
E. When income increases, or extra cash comes in, consider increasing debt repayment
F. Use credit and debt wisely

4. PREPARE FOR THE FUTURE
A. Set specific goals for future expenses (missions, education, retirement, fun
B. Start saving early to benefit from value of compounding over time
C. Consider risk; there are no free lunches and money doesn’t grow on trees
D. Consider estate planning: have a will and keep it up to date
E. Bless the lives of others

DINOSAURS

NO OFFICIAL CHURCH POSISTION
A copy of a letter sent by President David O. McKay to Professor William Lee Stokes, an LDS geology professor at the University of Utah dated 15 February 1957, stated that "on the subject of organic evolution the Church has officially taken no position."

DISCERNMENT

WHAT IS DISCERNMENT?
Discernment is the recognition of the spirit that actuates a person.

JOSEPH SMITH WITH DISCERNEMENT
"The way I know in whom to confide-God tells me in whom I may place confidence," the Prophet said.

Jesse N. Smith records, "I felt when in his presence that he could read me through and through."

A man acting, as it were, as an undercover agent came to Nauvoo, tried to work his way into the good graces of the Prophet, and then invited him out for a walk. On the crest of a hill the Prophet stopped, called him by name, and said, "You have a boat and men in readiness to kidnap me, but you will not make out to do it." It was true. The man had planned to kidnap him, but instead he went away cursing.

Joseph once wrote in a letter, "It is in vain to try to hide a bad spirit from the eyes of them who are spiritual, for it will show itself in speaking and in writing, as well as in all our other conduct. It is also needless to make great pretensions when the heart is not right: the Lord will expose it to the view of faithful Saints."

He once prayed to know whether a choir in Nauvoo was singing acceptable praises to God. The Lord made known to him that the director was immoral. Shortly the man resigned and left.


DISCIPLE

The criterion for recognizing yourself as a disciple is not one of negation. That is, you do not know you are a disciple by identifying the sins you do not commit. You recognize you are a disciple by what you do. -Are We Special? P. 69

DOERS

QUOTES
What you do speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you are saying.

When all is said and done, more is said than done. – Unknown

I like the word "indolence." It makes my laziness seem classy.  ~Bern Williams

All of the biggest technological inventions created by man - the airplane, the automobile, and the computer says little about his intelligence, but speaks volumes about his laziness.  ~Mark Kennedy

We have a system that increasingly taxes work and subsidizes non-work.  ~Milton Friedman

“I am so busy doing nothing... that the idea of doing anything - which as you know, always leads to something - cuts into the nothing and then forces me to have to drop everything.” – Jerry Seinfield

SCRIPTURES
Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Matt 7:21

And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like:
He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.
But he that heareth and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great. Luke 6:46-49

DOVE

THE SIGN OF THE DOVE
The sign of the dove was instituted before the creation of the world, a witness for the Holy Ghost, and the devil cannot come in the sign of a dove. The Holy Ghost is a personage, and is in the form of a personage. It does not confine itself to the form of the dove, but in sign of the dove. The Holy Ghost cannot be transformed into a dove; but the sign of a dove was given to John to signify the truth of the deed, as the dove is an emblem or token of truth and innocence. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 275-276.)

DUST

SHAKING OFF THE DUST FROM YOUR FEET
To ceremonially shake the dust from one's feet as a testimony against another was understood by the Jews to symbolize a cessation of fellowship and a renunciation of all responsibility for consequences that might follow. It became an ordinance of accusation and testimony by the Lord's instructions to His apostles as cited in the text. In the current dispensation, the Lord has similarly directed His authorized servants to so testify against those who willfully and maliciously oppose the truth when authoritatively presented (see D&C 24:15; 60:15; 75:20; 84:92; 99:4). The responsibility of testifying before the Lord by this accusing symbol is so great that the means may be employed only under unusual and extreme conditions, as the Spirit of the Lord may direct. – James E. Talmage

E
ENOUGH, ETERNITY, EVIL SPIRITS, EXPECTATIONS
ENOUGH AND TO SPARE

“The state of Utah with its 84,916 square miles of largely uninhabited territory could contain the entire world’s population of over five billion people with a population density of about 64,000 per square mile. This is about twice the density of the people living in New York City, which houses over eight million people in just 320 square miles, and about half again the density of Tokyo, Japan which contains something over 40,000 people per square mile.” Eric Skousen

“Orson Pratt once calculated whether this earth could actually provide room, acreage, space for all of the human family who have thus far lived on it. He came up with several acreage for everybody. – TGM

John 2:1-11
“Jesus had made more than enough… and why? Was he unaware of the actual count or the actual need? Or was he teaching? That when he said, ‘I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’ (John 10:10). There was enough and to spare. (D&C 104:17)

ETERNAL SEED
D&C 132:19

There is no such thing as spontaneous combustion. You don’t shake some linen and some wood and have life. But life can be transmitted and seeds can be brought. It is mind boggling isn’t it? You look at an apple; you can count the seeds, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Easy. But who can count the number of apples in each seed? How do you count those? Is it not incredible that other apples will grow and they will have seeds and they will be planted infinitely?  Well, who can calculate the number of children it is possible to have in the eternities. And is there then a clue in the meaning of the sentence in section 132 that the fullness of the glory of the Father is” a fullness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.” –TGM


ETERNITY

MOUNT TIMPINOGOS AND SEAGULLS
Time is a segment of eternity. How long is one eternity? We have a passage from Lorenzo Snow and a couple of others that they came up eventually with something close to what I quoted from Phelps, it’s a long time. To make this a little clearer try the following:
We have Mount Timpanogus. Imagine that it’s made of solid granite. What is it, close to 10,000 feet above sea level? Now imagine that once every million years a seagull comes, lands on top of Mount Timpanogus and sharpens its bill. That continues to happen every million years. Now when Timpanogus is all worn away by the sharpening of the bills of seagulls that will be 1 sec. in eternity. Does that help you understand that were going to be around a while? TGM

TODAY IS ETERNITY
Today is part of eternity. Too often we think about eternity as something that is a long way off. Eternity is today and for a long time. Eternity was this morning, eternity is this afternoon. Eternity will be tonight and tomorrow and the days that follow and the years that make their course. We are on that road today, and shouldn't those moments be filled with sweetness in planning, in loving, and all of the things that make life beautiful? –Howard W. Hunter

EVIL SPIRITS

  1. Evil spirits gain literal entrance into mortal bodies.
  2. Have power over those bodies as to control the physical acts performed, even to the framing of the very words spoken by the mouth of those so possessed.   
  3. Persons possessed are subjected to the severest mental and physical sufferings and to the basest sort of degradation-all symbolical of the eternal torment to be imposed upon those who fall under Satan's control in the world to come.  
  4. Devils remember Jesus from pre-existence as The Son of God.
  5. The desire to gain bodies is very great.
  6. Devils know their eventual destiny is to be cast out into an eternal hell from whence there is no return;
  7. Rebellious and worldly people are not converted to the truth by observing miracles.
  8. Those cleansed from evil spirits can then be used on the Lord's errand to testify of his grace and goodness so that receptive persons may be led to believe in him.
  9. Evil spirits do and must yield to the authority and name of Jesus Christ.
  1. Their intent is ultimately destructive.


F
FAITH, FALSE PROPHETS, FAMILIES, FAST OFFERINGS, FEAR, FIRE, FLOOD, FORGIVE, FREEDOM
FAITH





WHAT IS FAITH?
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. - JST Heb 11:1
Faith is the assurance which men have of the existence of things which they have not seen, and the principle of action in all intelligent beings. If men were duly to consider themselves, and turn their thoughts and reflections to the operations of their own minds, they would readily discover that it is faith, and faith only, which is the moving cause of all action in them; that without it both mind and body would be in a state of inactivity, and all their exertions would cease, both physical and mental. (Lectures on Faith, 1:9-10.)

FAITH IS ACTION
Faith is the principle of action and of power in all intelligent beings. Would you have ever sown, if you had not believed that you would reap? Would you have ever planted, if you had not believed that you would gather? Would you have ever asked, unless you had believed that you would receive? Would you have ever sought, unless you had believed that you would have found? Or, would you have ever knocked, unless you had believed that it would have been opened unto you? In a word, is there anything that you would have done, either physical or mental, if you had not previously believed? Are not all your exertions of every kind, dependent on your faith? Or, may we not ask, what have you, or what do you possess, which you have not obtained by reason of your faith? (Lectures on Faith 1:11.)  

FAITH IS POWER
As faith is the moving cause of all action in temporal concerns, so it is in spiritual; for the Savior has said, and that truly, that "He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved." (Mark 16:16; italics added.)   
As we receive by faith all temporal blessings that we do receive, so we in like manner receive by faith all spiritual blessings that we do receive. But faith is not only the principle of action, but of power also, in all intelligent beings, whether in heaven or on earth. Thus says the author of the epistle to the Hebrews, [11:3].   
"Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God; so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear." (Lectures on Faith 1:12-14.)   
When we talk about faith, sometimes we think only of belief, or of straining our mind to believe in something. But the Lectures on Faith talk about faith as being a literal power. In this definition of faith we find these words:   
Faith, then, is the first great governing principle which has power, dominion, and authority over all things; by it they exist, by it they are upheld, by it they are changed, or by it they remain, agreeable to the will of God. Without it there is no power, and without power there could be no creation nor existence. (Lectures on Faith 1:24.)   
The Lectures also note:   
Had it not been for the principle of faith the worlds would never have been framed, neither would man have been formed of the dust. It is the principle by which Jehovah works, and through which he exercises power over all temporal as well as eternal things. Take this principle or attribute-for it is an attribute-from the Deity, and he would cease to exist. (Lectures on Faith 1:16.)   
Now, you think about faith in that overall sense, that it is literally the power by which God himself operates. It makes you realize that when someone says, "I have got to study other things now, because I have already studied the first principles of the gospel," he is a long way from even beginning to understand a small part of the first principle of the gospel-faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.    
Faith is much more than just a positive attitude or any of the many techniques that man has learned to use to achieve his desires. True faith is in the Lord Jesus Christ unto life and salvation. There are many in the world who have their faith in worldly things, their positive attitude, but it will never take them anywhere. They have never come to understand that faith does have power, dominion, and authority over all things. It is the very power by which God himself operates.   

FAITH IS RELATED TO BELIEF.
Matt 21:22, Alma 32:22, 27 Mark 9:17-27

FAITH IS RELATED TO HOPE.
Heb. 11:1, Ether 12:4, Moroni 7:40
And what is it that ye shall hope for? Behold I say unto you that ye shall have hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection, to be raised unto life eternal, and this because of your faith in him according to the promise.

FAITH IS NOT ASSOCIATED WITH DOUBT AND FEAR.
Matthew 14:25-31, James 1:5-7, Mark 11:23-24
Such is the weakness of man, and such his frailties, that he is liable to sin continually, and if God were not long-suffering, and full of compassion, gracious and merciful, and of a forgiving disposition, man would be cut off from before him, in consequence of which he would be in continual doubt and could not exercise faith; for where doubt is, there faith has no power; but by man's believing that God is full of compassion and forgiveness, long-suffering and slow to anger, he can exercise faith in him and overcome doubt, so as to be exceedingly strong. (Questions and answers on Lecture 3.)

FAITH DOES NOT COME BY SIGNS.
7 And he that seeketh signs shall see signs, but not unto salvation.
8 Verily, I say unto you, there are those among you who seek signs, and there have been such even from the beginning;
9 But, behold, faith cometh not by signs, but signs follow those that believe.
10 Yea, signs come by faith, not by the will of men, nor as they please, but by the will of God.
11 Yea, signs come by faith, unto mighty works, for without faith no man pleaseth God; and with whom God is angry he is not well pleased; wherefore, unto such he showeth no signs, only in wrath unto their condemnation.  D&C 63:7-11


SIGN SEEKERS AND ADULTERY
I will give you one of the Keys of the mysteries of the Kingdom. It is an eternal principle, that has existed with God from all eternity: That man who rises up to condemn others, finding fault with the Church, saying that they are out of the way, while he himself is righteous, then know assuredly, that that man is in the high road to apostasy; and if he does not repent, will apostatize, as God lives. The principle is as correct as the one that Jesus put forth in saying that he who seeketh a sign is an adulterous person; and that principle is eternal, undeviating, and firm as the pillars of heaven; for whenever you see a man seeking after a sign, you may set it down that he is an adulterous man. –Joseph Smith

JOSEPH SMITH AND THE SIGN SEEKER
When the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was first founded, you could see persons rise up and ask, "What sign will you show us that we may be made to believe?" I recollect a Campbellite preacher who came to Joseph Smith; I think his name was Hayden. He came in and made himself known to Joseph, and said that he had come a considerable distance to be convinced of the truth. "Why," said he, "Mr. Smith, I want to know the truth, and when I am convinced, I will spend all my talents and time in defending and spreading the doctrines of your religion, and I will give you to understand that to convince me is equivalent to convincing all my society, amounting to several hundreds." Well, Joseph commenced laying before him the coming forth of the work, and the first principles of the Gospel, when Mr. Hayden exclaimed, "O this is not the evidence I want, the evidence that I wish to have is a notable miracle; I want to see some powerful manifestation of the power of God, I want to see a notable miracle performed; and if you perform such a one, then I will believe with all my heart and soul, and will exert all my power and all my extensive influence to convince others; and if you will not perform a miracle of this kind, then I am your worst and bitterest enemy." "Well," said Joseph, "what will you have done? Will you be struck blind, or dumb? Will you be paralyzed, or will you have one hand withered? Take your choice, choose which you please, and in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ it shall be done." "That is not the kind of miracle I want," said the preacher. "Then, sir," replied Joseph, "I can perform none, I am not going to bring any trouble upon anybody else, sir, to convince you. I will tell you what you make me think of-the very first person who asked a sign of the Savior, for it is written, in the New Testament, that Satan came to the Savior in the desert, when he was hungry with forty days' fasting, and said, "If you be the Son of God, command these stones to be made bread." "And now," said Joseph, "the children of the devil and his servants have been asking for signs ever since; and when the people in that day continued asking him for signs to prove the truth of the Gospel which he preached, the Savior replied, "It is a wicked and an adulterous generation that seeketh a sign," &c.     
But the poor preacher had so much faith in the power of the Prophet that he daren't risk being struck blind, lame, dumb, or having one hand withered, or anything of the kind. We have frequently heard men calling for signs without knowing actually what they did want. Could he not have tested the principles, and thus have ascertained the truth? -Journal of Discourses v2, Sermon By Elder George A. Smith

FAITH IS NOT A PERFECT KNOWLEDGE.
Alma 32:21, 34

FAITH GROWS THROUGH REPETITION
Everyone supposes that the sun will come up tomorrow because it came up this morning AND THE NUMBER OF REPETITIONS seems to increase our confidence that it will continue to come up today, tomorrow and even 100 years from now.

STORY OF MY BROTHER AND SISTER IN YOSEMITE
“Two summers ago my dad took me and my sister tubing down the Merced River in Yosemite. The water was calm and slow. We were having a great time. All of a sudden the water became swift and my sister who was ahead of us went over a small drop and was pulled under water into a deep pool of rapids. She eventually came up and made her way up to the side. I thought I was going to die.
All of a sudden my dad grabbed the back of my life jacket and pulled me right out of my inner tube. He held me as tight as he could. We stood there in the middle of the river with the water rushing around us. My dad told me to do exactly as he said. To walk only when and where he told me to. If I listened to him, I would be safe. But I had to walk exactly where he said to Step by Step.
I had faith in my dad, so I did what he said without question. We slowly made it across to the other side of the river.  My trust and faith in my dad was even stronger when I could see that by listening to him I was able to make it across safely.” – Chad Hickman

SOLOMON MACK AND INDIANS
"About half way from Stillwater to Fort Edwards, I espied four Indians nearly thirty rods distant, coming out of the woods; they were armed with scalping knives, tomahawks and guns. I was alone, but about twenty rods behind me was a man by the name of Webster. I saw my danger, and that there was no way to escape, unless I could do it by stratagem; so I rushed upon them, calling in the mean time at the top of my voice, Rush on! Rush on my boys! We’ll have the devils. The only weapon I had was a walking staff, yet I ran toward them, and as the other man appeared just at that instant, it gave them a terrible fright, and I saw no more of them. “- Solomon Mack

THE FALL

THE EARTH FELL
When Adam sinned, the earth "was hurled millions of miles away from its first position, and that is why it was called the Fall." – Brigham Young

THE FALL WAS NOT IMMEDIATLEY
When Father Adam transgressed the law, he did not fall at once from the presence of the Lord, but spake face to face with him a long time afterwards. –Brigham Young

HOW THE FALL WAS ACHIEVED
1. Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden with a knowledge that they were soon to enjoy the blessings of the second estate.
2. The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil which would introduce death.
3. God placed a ban on the fruit
4. Lucifer’s seductive persuasion
-Skousen (The First 2,000 Years)


FALSE PROPHETS

1.  Serve false Christ’s and belong to false churches.    
2.  Worship false gods and teach others so to do.    
3.  Serve Satan, whose prophets and ministers they are.    
4.  Are all corrupt.    
5.  Teach false doctrines.    
6. The teachings of deny God and the Godhead.    
7. The teachings of destroy the family unit and deny the purposes of God.    
8.  Malign Joseph Smith, fight against the Book of Mormon, and deny the restoration of the gospel.    
9.  Teach with their learning rather than by the power of the Holy Ghost.    
10.  Teach for hire and divine for money.    
11.  Do not raise the warning voice and cry repentance.    
12.  Prophesy falsely.    
13.  Perform false ordinances that have no efficacy, virtue, or force in and after the resurrection.    
14.  Do not receive revelation, see visions, entertain angels, and see the face of God.    
15.  Deny the gifts of the Spirit and latter-day miracles.    
16.  Do not have the testimony of Jesus, which is the spirit of prophecy.    
17.  Promote carnal and evil causes that are not of God.    
18.  Do not hold priesthood.    
19.  Engage in priest crafts.    
20.  Work false miracles and engage in sorceries, witchcrafts, and magic.    
21.  Are leaders of apostate groups that have broken away from the true Church.
- Bruce R. McConkie Millennial Messiah

WHAT DO FALSE PROPHETS SAY?
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FAMILIES

FAMILIES ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT
We are talking about a system, out of which the greatest love, and joy, and peace and happiness and serenity that is known to human kind to grow. We are talking about creating a family unit that has the potential of being everlasting and eternal.  A family unit where a man and a wife can go on in that relationship to all eternity and where there will there be mother and daughter and father and son eternal ties that never will be severed. We are talking about creating a unit more important than the church, more important than any organization that exists on earth or in heaven an organization, or unit out of which exaltation and eternal life grow. -Bruce R. McConkie

A BALANCE BETWEEN FAMILY AND WORK
We are not counseled to neglect our families. Quite the contrary. We must work to save our families. As leaders we must always remember that we will be released from our Church callings but we will never receive a release from our divine appointment of father and husband, mother and wife. Stakes may be organized and divided anytime in our Church buildings but the sacred institution of families may be organized only in the holy temple. David O. McKay made it clear that a priesthood holder’s first stewardship accountability from the Lord will be for his wife and then his children. With that said, neither are we counseled to use our families as an excuse for not giving full service to our Church assignments. The issue isn’t choosing between success with our families and success with our Church stewardships – and ‘success’ is defined as doing the best we can. Rather, the issue is recognizing that failure in one area invariably leads to failure in both. We cannot have celestial families unless we are living the celestial law of consecration. The Holy Spirit will lead us to balance our time and effort between family and Church responsibilities. – Leadership for Saints

THE EARLY CHURCH WAS A FAMILY AFFAIR
The early Church of Jesus Christ was a family affair in many ways. John the Baptist was a cousin of the Savior, and the original Quorum of the Twelve included at least two sets of brothers and probably three: Peter and Andrew (John 1:40), James and John (Matthew 4:21), and probably Matthew and James, who was nicknamed the Less to distinguish him from James the son of Zebedee (Mark 2:14; Matthew 10:3). That the mother of James the Less was also waiting by the cross may hint at a strong relationship between her and Mary, the mother of Jesus. – Andrew C. Skinner

FAST OFFERINGS

FASTING IS A COMMANDMENT
“Fasting has always been a practice among Gods people. In our day it is a commandment given by the Lord to all members of the Church. In addition to occasional special fasts that we might have for personal or family reasons, we are expected to fast once a month on the first Sunday. - Elder Carl B. Pratt

3 ASPECTS TO A PROPER FAST
We are taught that there are three aspects to a proper fast day observance:

  1. Abstaining from food and drink for two consecutive meals or, in other words, 24 hours;
  2. Attending fast and testimony meeting
  3. Giving a generous fast offering.  . - Elder Carl B. Pratt

LORDS DESCRIPTION OF A PROPER FAST
Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? When thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? (Isa. 58:7).

FEAR

Psychologists today tell us that children have two instinctive fears (all others they learn): one, the fear of loud noises; the other, the fear of falling. – TGM

PUBLIC SPEAKING IS NUMBER ONE FEAR
Speaking in front of a crowd is considered the number 1 fear of the average person. I found that amazing. Number 2 was death!
This means to the average person if you have to be at a funeral you would rather be in the casket than doing the eulogy. – Jerry Seinfeld

ADAMS FIRST REACTION OF THE FALL
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I [was] naked; -Gen 3:10

PUBLIC SPEAKING IS NOT THAT HARD
“It's quite simple, Say what you have to say and when you come to a sentence with a grammatical ending, sit down” –Winston Churchill

QUOTES ABOUT PUBLIC SPEAKING
What this country needs is less public speaking and more private thinking - Roscoe Drummond

"The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public. — George Jessel

"Public speaking is the art of diluting a two-minute idea with a two-hour vocabulary."
— Evan Esar

Every speaker has a mouth;
An arrangement rather neat.
Sometimes it's filled with wisdom.
Sometimes it's filled with feet.
— Robert Orben



FORGIVENESS

FORGIVE AND FORGET
Not only is it important that we say we forgive others their offenses, but it is vital that we forget them. By forget I mean not continue to harbor ill feelings or allow the matter to smolder or fester. – Richard G. Scott

BE READY TO FORGIVE
“Ever keep in exercise the principle of mercy, and be ready to forgive our brother on the first intimations of repentance, and asking forgiveness; and should we even forgive our brother, or even our enemy, before he repent or ask forgiveness, our heavenly Father would be equally as merciful unto us.” –TPJS

WILLINGNESS TO FORGIVE IS PROOF OF YOUR REPENTENCE
Pray for your enemies. Now that’s completely different than praying against them. We can indulge ourselves in the spirit of vengeance, of praying against others and especially those who have hurt us or who are continuing to. Who haven’t shown the first sign of change. But we are not saying here that you purchase the forgiveness of God for yourself by forgiving your neighbor. We are saying, in the spirit of Jesus, that only your willingness to forgive others is proof of your own repentance. This means a certain abandonment of self love. - TGM

FORGIVE TO BE FORGIVEN
Hence in the Lord’s Prayer, we are asked to pray in a way that says; I will put it negatively; do not forgive me oh lord one wit more than I am willing to forgive all others. That’s me meaning of the sentence, “Forgive us our trespasses AS, meaning in likeness to or just as much as, we forgive the trespasses of others. This is put beautifully, in one sentence, in the first epistle of John who is known as the Apostle of love. – TGM

WHEN SOMEONE ASKS FOR FORGIVNESS
When a battered, weary swimmer tries valiantly to get back to shore, after having fought strong winds and rough waves which he should never have challenged in the first place, those of us who might have had better judgment, or perhaps just better luck, ought not to row out to his side, beat him with our oars, and shove his head back underwater. That's not what boats were made for. But some of us do that to each other.

UNFORGIVING IS A FORM OF BONDAGE
Not forgiving others is a form of “you owe me.” It’s a way of keeping a person in emotional debt. Holding a grudge falsely empowers unhealthy people who justify withholding love, affection, or approval to remain in control. – Dr. John Lewis Lund


"FATHER, FORGIVE THEM; FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO." LUKE 23:34
It is not an utterance whereby anyone's sins are forgiven. He does not say, 'Thy sins be forgiven thee,' as had been his wont on other occasion. Nor does he ask the Father to forgive the sins of those involved, but he says, rather, 'Father lay not this sin to their charge, for they are acting under orders, and those upon whom the full and real guilt rests are their rulers and the Jewish conspirators who caused me to be condemned. It is Caiaphas and Pilate who know I am innocent; these soldiers are just carrying out their orders.' – James Talmage

Here on the cross Jesus is simply complying with his own command to forgive your enemies and to bless those who curse you. President Joseph F. Smith, who himself was the victim of much vicious and intemperate reviling and Gentile hatred, expressed the same general principle in these words: "I feel in my heart to forgive all men in the broad sense that God requires of me to forgive all men, and I desire to love my neighbor as myself; and to this extent I bear no malice toward any of the children of my Father. But there are enemies to the work of the Lord, as there were enemies to the Son of God. There are those who speak only evil of the Latter-day Saints. There are those-and they abound largely in our midst-who will shut their eyes to every virtue and to every good thing connected with this latter-day work, and will pour out floods of falsehood and misrepresentation against the people of God. I forgive them for this. I leave them in the hands of the just Judge. Let him deal with them as seemeth him good, but they are not and cannot become my bosom companions. I cannot condescend to that. While I would not harm a hair of their heads, while I would not throw a straw in their path, to hinder them from turning from the error of their way to the light of truth; I would as soon think of taking a centipede or a scorpion, or any poisonous reptile, and putting it into my bosom, as I would think of becoming a companion or an associate of such men." (Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine, 5th ed., p. 337.)   





G
GAYS AND LESBIANS, GOSSIP,
GAYS AND LESBIANS

GOD MADE THEM THAT WAY?
Many have been misinformed that they are powerless in the matter, not responsible for the tendency, and that "God made them that way." This is as untrue as any other of the diabolical lies Satan has concocted. It is blasphemy. Man is made in the image of God. Does the pervert think God to be "that way"?  - Spencer W. Kimball



GOSSIP

A Story recalled by a man named Jesse Crosby, who one day accompanied a woman on a visit to the Prophet. She felt she had been maligned unjustly by gossip. Regarding such matters, Joseph would say: "The little foxes spoil the vines-little evils do the most damage in the Church." He also said, "The devil flatters us that we are very righteous, when we are feeding on the faults of others." He pointed out, "The Savior has the words of eternal life"-that is, if you really want to prize words, the Savior has the words of eternal life-and "nothing else can profit us." And then in order to make the point, he added, "There is no salvation in believing an evil report against our neighbor."   
But this sister had been troubled, and she came and asked for redress: she wanted the Prophet now to go to the person who was the source of the story and properly take care of it. He enquired of her in some detail and then counseled her in terms something like this: "Sister, when I have heard of a story about me [and he could have said there had been many], I sit down and think about it and pray about it, and I ask myself the question, 'Did I say something or was there something about my manner to give some basis for that story to start?' And, Sister, often if I think about it long enough I realize I have done something to give that basis. And there wells up in me a forgiveness of the person who has told that story and a resolve that I will never do that thing again."   

When others found fault with Joseph Smith, instead of confrontation, putting all the blame on them, the spirit of his counsel to himself as to this sister was otherwise: "Look deeper, Brother, and see if maybe there is a kernel of truth in what they are saying." That, I suggest, shows wisdom.

GOSSIP CAN BEGIN BY NOT GETTING THE TRUTH! AND SPREADING FALSE INFORMATION
Truth #1
Imagine an artist in San Francisco who creates this great Artistic piece of work. He has just sculpted a beautiful image of a dragon and then when he is done, these kids come while he is not there begin whacking it with sticks. It eventually ruins by it being pulverized by the sticks and breaks open. – BBC News

Truth #1
Information withheld? It was a piñata!
They withhold information to portray what they want to portray. What you don't see with your eyes, don't witness with your mouth.  ~Jewish Proverb– BBC News

Another Example
2 men both from the primitive areas of Africa, comes to America. One of them has a terrible stomach ache, is taken by a modern surgeon into a hospital and when his friend walks in, he sees for the first time, surgery underway. He sees his friend laid out and unconscious. He sees people in white digging into his stomach with knives and he makes 3 assumptions:
1. They have done this against the will of my friend
2. They are trying to kill him.
3. The best thing I can do is to pull him off right now. Get him out of here.
Wrong, Wrong and Wrong!
1. He consented to the operation to take out his appendix and anything else that might be in trouble.
2. They are not trying to take his life. They are trying to save it.
3. The worst thing his friend can do would be to pull him away until the operation is completed.


QOUTES
What you don't see with your eyes, don't witness with your mouth.  ~Jewish Proverb

No one gossips about other people's secret virtues.  ~Bertrand Arthur William Russell, On Education, 1926

If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees.  ~Kahlil Gibran

Whoever gossips to you will gossip about you.  ~Spanish Proverb

Nothing travels faster than light, with the possible exception of bad news, which follows its own rules.  ~Douglas Adams

Gossip needn't be false to be evil - there's a lot of truth that shouldn't be passed around.  ~Frank A. Clark

Trying to squash a rumor is like trying to un-ring a bell.  ~Shana Alexander


There is so much good in the worst of us,
And so much bad in the best of us,
That it hardly becomes any of us
To talk about the rest of us.
~Edward Wallis Hoch


THE UNIVERSAL ETHER
A word is spoken. The air movements that it causes, disturbs the ether. The ether waves radiate into space and can never die. Anywhere, with the proper instrument, one of the waves may be captured, and the spoken word read. That is the simple method of wireless telegraphy. It is thus that all our actions shall be known on the last great day. By the ether, or the Holy Spirit as named by the Prophet, God holds all things in His keeping. His intelligent will radiates into space, to touch whomsoever it desires. He who is tuned aright can read the message, flashed across the ether ocean, by the Almighty. – John A. Widtsoe




GRATITUDE

ALL THINGS WITH THANKFULNESS
D&C 78:19
He who receiveth all things with thankfulness [notice the "all" in that: difficulties, strains, disaster, setbacks] shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more." Joseph was one of the most grateful men who ever lived. TGM

THANKFUL IN YOUR AFFLICTIONS
In one of the times of spiritual and temporal adversity recorded in the Book of Mormon, when the people of God were "suffering all manner of afflictions," the Lord commanded them to "give thanks in all things" (Mosiah 26:38-39). I wish to apply that teaching to our time. Dallin H. Oaks

THANKFUL FOR YOUR AFFLICTIONS
The revelations show that we should even give thanks for our afflictions because they turn our hearts to God and give us opportunities to prepare for what God would have us become. The Lord taught the prophet Moroni, "I give unto men weakness that they may be humble," and then promised that "if they humble themselves … and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them" (Ether 12:27).
In the midst of the persecutions the Latter-day Saints were suffering in Missouri, the Lord gave a similar teaching and promise: "Verily I say unto you my friends, fear not, let your hearts be comforted; yea, rejoice evermore, and in everything give thanks; … and all things wherewith you have been afflicted shall work together for your good" (D&C 98:1, 3).
And to Joseph Smith in the afflictions of Liberty Jail, the Lord said, "Know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good" (D&C 122:7). Brigham Young understood. Said he, "There is not a single condition of life [or] one hour's experience but what is beneficial to all those who make it their study, and aim to improve upon the experience they gain"
As someone has said, there is a big difference between 20 years' experience and 1 year's experience repeated 20 times. If we understand the Lord's teachings and promises, we will learn and grow from our adversities.

SUFFERING IS SCHOOL EXPERIENCE
"We have learned many things through suffering. We call it suffering. I call it a school of experience. … I have never looked at these things in any other light than trials for the purpose of purifying the Saints of God that they may be, as the scriptures say, as gold that has been seven times purified by the fire" John Taylor
Like the pioneers, we should thank God for our adversities and pray for guidance in meeting them. Through that attitude and through our faith and obedience, we will realize the promises God has given us. It is all part of the plan.
When we understand this principle, that God offers us opportunities for blessings and blesses us through our own adversities and the adversities of others, we can understand why He has commanded us again and again to "thank the Lord thy God in all things" (D&C 59:7). Elder Dallin H. Oaks, Give Thanks in All Things, Ensign (CR), May 2003

PRAYER
As we strive to make our prayers more meaningful, we should remember that "in nothing doth man offend God, or against none is his wrath kindled, save those who confess not his hand in all things, and obey not his commandments" (D&C 59:21). Let me recommend that periodically you and I offer a prayer in which we only give thanks and express gratitude. Ask for nothing; simply let our souls rejoice and strive to communicate appreciation with all the energy of our hearts. - David A. Bednar

TEN LEPERS
And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where [are] the nine? Luke 17:11-19

COMMANDMENT
Wherefore, I give unto them a commandment, saying thus: Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things. D&C 59:5-7

And ye must give thanks unto God in the Spirit for whatsoever blessing ye are blessed with.
D&C 46:32

If thou art merry, praise the Lord with singing, with music, with dancing, and with a prayer of praise and thanksgiving. D&C 136:28

In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 1 Thes. 5:18.

When thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God. Alma 37:37

H
HANDSOME, HATE, HEMATIDROSIS, HEROD, HOBBIES, HOLY ENVY, HOLY GHOST, HOME TEACHING, HONESTY
HANDSOME

Handsome men are not apt to be wise and strong-minded men; but the strength of a strong-minded man will generally create coarse features, like the rough, strong bough of the oak. You will always discover in the first glance of a man, in the outlines of his features something of his mind. (HC 5:389.)   - Joseph Smith

HATE THINE ENEMY

It is recorded that Jesus said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thine enemy and in fact there is nowhere in the Bible or the book of Mormon where anyone wrote hate thine enemy. And this has been puzzlement to scholars but of late with the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls a manuscript has been found that does say hate thine enemy. So the idea was in the air and he knew it and so did his listeners. –TGM

HEMATIDROSIS

BLOODY SWEAT
A remarkable article in the Journal of the American Medical Association discusses the rare phenomenon called Hematidrosis (bloody sweat) as the very real condition described by Luke. It has been known to occur in persons with bleeding disorders, or, more significantly, in persons experiencing extreme distress and highly emotional states. As a result of extreme stress and pressure, the small blood vessels just under the skin hemorrhage. Blood mixes with perspiration, and the skin becomes fragile and tender. Thus, in the cold night air, this condition may have also produced chills in Jesus. Some have further suggested that the Hematidrosis suffered by Jesus also produced hypovolemia, or shock due to excessive loss of bodily fluid (Edwards, Gabel, and Hosmer, "On the Physical Death of Jesus," 1455-56).   – Andrew C. Skinner
Hematidrosis would indicate that Jesus' blood pressure was greatly elevated and that his sweat glands were intensely overactive, as dictated by an autonomic nervous system that was responding maximally to his tortured mental condition and emotional agony in Gethsemane. – BYU Studies

HEROD

JESUS SILENCE TO HEROD
Luke 23:9
“I believe Jesus not only disliked Herod but felt utter contempt for him. He had murdered Jesus' cousin, John the Baptist, and had tried to kill Jesus himself. He deserved no response or respect from the Son of God.” – Andrew C. Skinner

“Herod is the only character in history to whom Jesus is known to have applied a personal epithet of contempt.”Go ye and tell that fox," He once said to certain Pharisees who had come to Him with the story that Herod intended to kill him. As far as we know, Herod is further distinguished as the only being who saw Christ face to face and spoke to Him, yet never heard His voice. For penitent  sinners, weeping women, prattling children, for the  scribes, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the rabbis, for the perjured high priest and his obsequious and insolent underling, and for Pilate the pagan, Christ had words-of comfort or instruction, of warning or rebuke, of protest or denunciation-yet for Herod the fox He had but disdainful and kingly silence."- James E. Talmage

HOBBIES

HOBBIES CAN AID IN UNRIGHTEOUS JUDGEMENT
We have noticed this difficulty: that Saints with hobbies are prone to judge and condemn their brethren and sisters who are not so zealous in the one particular direction of their pet theory as they are. There is another phase of this difficulty-the man with a hobby is apt to assume an "I am holier than thou" position, to feel puffed up and conceited, and to look with distrust, if with no severer feeling, on his brethren and sisters who do not so perfectly live that one particular law. This feeling hurts his fellow-servants and offends the Lord.

HOBBIES CAN AID IN UNRIGHTEOUSNESS
Some members of the Church who should know better pick out a hobby key or two and tap them incessantly, to the irritation of those around them. They can dull their own spiritual sensitivities. They lose track that there is a fullness of the gospel. – Boyd K. Packer

The best kind of a Latter-day Saint is the man or the woman that is ready for any kind of labor, whether at home or abroad, and has no hobby, no special desire in a certain channel, to the depreciation of everything else. -Elder Matthias F. Cowley

GOSPEL CAN HOBBIES CAN BE BAD
Do not become obsessed with what may be called "a gospel hobby." A good meal always includes more than one course. You ought to have great strength in your chosen and assigned field of expertise. But I warn you against making that your only interest. - Gordon B. Hinckley

HOBBIES CAN CAUSE SPIRITUAL INSTABILITY
Salvation is won in and through conformity to the whole gospel plan and not by specializing and centering on some chosen field as though that field were the gospel. Religious or gospel hobbies are dangerous signs of spiritual instability; they lead to fanaticism and sometimes even to apostasy and the consequent loss of eternal life.   
"Don't have hobbies," President Joseph F. Smith counseled. "Hobbies are dangerous in the Church of Christ. They are dangerous because they give undue prominence to certain principles or ideas to the detriment and dwarfing of others just as important, just as binding, just as saving as the favored doctrines or commandments.   
"Hobbies give to those who encourage them a false aspect of the gospel of the Redeemer; they distort and place out of harmony its principles and teachings. The point of view is unnatural. Every principle and practice revealed from God is essential to man's salvation, and to place any one of them unduly in front, hiding and dimming all others is unwise and dangerous; it jeopardizes salvation, for it darkens our minds and beclouds our understandings. Such a view, no matter to what point directed, narrows the vision, weakens the spiritual perception, and darkens the mind, the result of which is that the person thus afflicted with this perversity and contraction of mental vision places himself in a position to be tempted of the evil one, or, through dimness of sight or distortion of vision, to misjudge his brethren and give way to the spirit of apostasy. He is not square with the Lord.   
"We have noticed this difficulty - that saints with hobbies are prone to judge and condemn their brethren and sisters who are not so zealous in the one particular direction of their pet theory as they are. The man with the Word of Wisdom only in his brain is apt to find unmeasured fault with every other member of the Church who entertains liberal ideas as to the importance of other doctrines of the gospel.   
"There is another phase of this difficulty - the man with a hobby is apt to assume an I am holier than thou position, to feel puffed up and conceited, and to look with distrust, if with no severer feeling, on his brethren and sisters who do not so perfectly live that one particular law. This feeling hurts his fellow servants and offends the Lord." (Gospel Doctrine, 5th ed., pp. 116-117.)

HOLY ENVY

Leave room for Holy Envy. Then he said let me give you an example of my Holy Envy for the Latter-day Saints. We Lutherans, when we lose our loved ones we have funerals, we have cemeteries, but that ends our concern with those who have gone before. The Latter-day Saints care about their forebears to the point that they want to bring the blessings and Christ's Atonement to them. So they build temples and according to Paul's instructions in the Corinthians they perform baptisms for the dead. And then he smiled and said, I have Holy Envy for that.

HOLY GHOST

QUICKENS MAN
"It quickens all the intellectual faculties, increases, enlarges, expands and purifies all the natural passions and affection  ... It develops and invigorates all the faculties of the physical and intellectual man." - Parley P. Pratt

HOME TEACHING


HISTORY OF HOME TEACHING
Dates and facts have been taken from the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol. 2, Home Teaching,

1830, April
Revelation regarding the duties of the priesthood was received. Duties of the Elders, Priests, and Teachers included “watch[ing] over the church. . . visit[ing] the house of each member, exhorting them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties. . . [and to] be with and strengthen them.” (D&C 20:42, 47, 51, 53. HC 1:67-68)

1850’s
“Block teachers” were set up. They were called thus due to their geographic nature, for you would visit the families on your block.

1909
Block Teachers were called “acting teachers.”

1912
Acting Teachers were changed to “ward teachers”.

1962, January
President Thomas S Monson returned home from presiding over the Canadian Mission of the Church, and was named a member of the Adult Correlation Committee of the Church, which had been assigned to prepare the “new” concept of Home Teaching. Each phase of the work, when completed, was reviewed by the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve. (Ensign, May 1996, pg 45)

1963, Spring
The work of the Adult Correlation Committee was done and a number of them (including Pres Monson) were called to serve on the new Priesthood Home Teaching Committee, and were assigned to go among the stakes of the Church teaching and encouraging its implementation. (Ensign, May 1996, pg 45)

1963
The term “home teachers” was introduced, which was different than ward teaching because a greater emphasis was now put on watching over the family rather than just making monthly visits. (Elder James A. Cullimore, CR, October 8, 1972)

1980, December 1
President Ezra Taft Benson introduces the First Presidency Message as the “official” Home Teaching message. (Ensign, Feb 1981, p. 79; Oct 1981, p. 76)

1987, April 4
President Ezra Taft Benson presents his now famous talk, “To the Home Teachers of the Church.” (Ensign, May 1987, pp 47-49)

SUMMARY OF HOME-TEACHING
The scriptural foundation of home teaching is the commandment for priesthood holders to "watch over the church always, and be with and strengthen them" (D&C 20:53; see also D&C 20:54–55; Moroni 6:4). Through home teaching, priesthood holders join with the Lord in watching over and strengthening Church members. From the time priesthood holders are ordained to the office of teacher, they have the opportunity and responsibility to serve as home teachers. Accordingly, home teachers are assigned by priesthood leaders. They are not called, sustained, or set apart.—chruch handbook of instructions pg168

THE IMPORTANCE OF HOME-TEACHING
In an address given at a general priesthood meeting of the Church, President Ezra Taft Benson taught:
"I feel impressed to speak to you about a priesthood program that has been inspired from its inception—a program that touches hearts, that changes lives, and that saves souls; a program that has the stamp of approval of our Father in Heaven; a program so vital that, if faithfully followed, it will help to spiritually renew the Church and exalt its individual members and families.
"I am speaking about priesthood home teaching. With all my heart, I pray that you will understand, by the Spirit, exactly my feelings about home teaching.
"Brethren, home teaching is not just another program. It is the priesthood way of watching over the Saints and accomplishing the mission of the Church. Home teaching is not just an assignment. It is a sacred calling.
"Home teaching is not to be undertaken casually. A home teaching call is to be accepted as if extended to you personally by the Lord Jesus Christ.
"The Savior Himself was a teacher. The only perfect man to walk the face of the earth was a humble, dedicated, inspired teacher who brought to His followers salvation and exaltation.
"Oh, that all the brethren of the Church would catch that vision of home teaching!
"Tonight I am not teaching new doctrine, but I am reaffirming old doctrine. Quoting from section 20 of the Doctrine and Covenants, revealed to the Prophet Joseph in April of 1830, the Lord declared to the priesthood:
“‘Watch over the church always, and be with and strengthen them;
“‘And see that there is no iniquity in the church.
“‘And see that the church meet together often, and also see that all the members do their duty' (D&C 20:53–55).
“‘And visit the house of each member, exhorting them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties' (D&C 20:51).
"Brethren, that is priesthood home teaching" ("To the Home Teachers of the Church," Ensign, May 1987, 48–49).

HUSBAND AND WIFE COUPLES
Leaders must obtain the bishop’s approval for each companionship. Leaders may assign the wife to accompany him on home-teaching visits where the visit by a couple is specifically needed. Such assignments are to be exceptions, not the rule. Couples may report these visits as both home teaching and visiting teaching. In these instances the bishop should council with the Relief Society President to ensure that the sister’s needs are being met. (church handbook of instructions pg 169)

RESPONSIBILITIES OF HOME TEACHERS
Home Teachers make at least monthly visits to the homes of assigned members to:
1 - “Exhort them to pray vocally and in secret and to attend to all family duties.” (D&C 20:51)
2 - “Watch over… and be with and strengthen them” (D&C 20:53)
3 - “Warn, Expound, Exhort, and Teach, and Invite all to come unto Christ.” (20:59)

They become acquainted with each member’s interests and needs and recognize special events in their lives. Home teachers are the FIRST source of help to members. They consult with the head of the household about their needs.
Each visit should focus on a planned purpose. They usually present the First Presidency’s message; additional messages may come from the bishop or other local leaders. The head of the household may request a special message. Messages should be based on the scriptures and the teachings of latter-day prophets.
Each month, home teachers report to quorum leaders on the welfare of their families they visit.

HOME TEACHING EXCUSES
The only man who is really free is the one who can turn down an invitation to dinner without giving an excuse.  ~Jules Renard
Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure.  ~Don Wilder and Bill Rechin
He who excuses himself accuses himself.  ~Gabriel Meurier, Trésor des sentences
No one ever excused his way to success.  ~Dave Del Dotto
And oftentimes excusing of a fault Doth make the fault the worse by the excuse. William Shakespeare


HONESTY

Being brutally honest in the name of truth is still brutality.

HONEST INHERIT CELESTIAL KINGDOM
"No one can ever enter the celestial kingdom unless he is strictly honest." That's a hard one. My own bishop has told me that when he asks individuals whether they are strictly honest, most people reply, "I try." Eventually we must do more than "try."   Another comment on honesty: "A man who has an honest heart," said the Prophet, "should rejoice."   - TGM

FIG TREE (HONESTY)
Matt 21:18-22, Mark 11:12-20
But as he approached in the distance he sees the leaves and it is the case at least with some fig trees that what first appears are the lumps the buds and figs and then shortly leaves. If there are leaves there must be fruit. So he expected anticipated fruit… But when he gets to the tree, the King James Version says, “He found no fruit.” The Joseph smith translation says, “There was no fruit.”  And what did he do? One account is simply a statement, “bare no fruit forever”.  Another says, he cursed the tree. The 2 accounts differ again on how soon the effect one implies almost instantly the tree withered. The other it’s the next morning when they return and peter notices that it’s now withered all the way to the root. Now is that a proper thing to do to an innocent fig tree?
What was happening is that the tree was advertising its fruitfulness. The tree by its leaves was proclaiming, come, I am fruitful. But that was a deception. It didn’t have a single fig. and if as is so often is the case in scripture that the tree stands for mankind, then was is being taught clearly is that pretending is not enough.
A fruitless tree cumbers the ground.

HUMILITY

I have "a subtle devil to deal with, and could only curb him by being humble." – Joseph Smith

WHAT IS HUMILITY?
There are a thousand definitions, but it means at least acknowledging one's dependence on the Lord, acknowledging when and where one is not self-sufficient. TGM

HUMILITY IS NOT WEAKNESS BUT STRENGTH.
One can be bold and meek at the same time. One can be courageous and humble. If the Lord was meek and lowly and humble, then to become humble one must do what he did in boldly denouncing evil, bravely advancing righteous works, courageously meeting every problem, becoming the master of himself and the situations about him and being near oblivious to personal credit.  
Humble and meek properly suggest virtues, not weaknesses. They suggest a consistent mildness of temper and an absence of wrath and passion. It is not servile submissiveness. Humility is teachableness-an ability to realize that all virtues and abilities are not concentrated in one's self. ...     
Humility is gracious, quiet, serene-not pompous, spectacular, nor histrionic. It is subdued, kindly, and understanding-not crude, blatant, loud, or ugly. It never struts nor swaggers. Its faithful, quiet works will be the badge of its own accomplishments. It never sets itself in the center of the stage, leaving all others in supporting roles. Humility is never accusing nor contentious. It is not boastful… Humility is repentant and seeks not to justify its follies. It is forgiving others in the realization that there may be errors of the same kind or worse chalked up against itself. ... It is not self-abasement-the hiding in the corner, the devaluation of everything one does or thinks or says; but it is the doing of one's best in every case and leaving of one's acts, expressions, and accomplishments to largely speak for themselves. . - Spencer W. Kimball

WHEN ONE BECOMES CONSCIOUS OF HIS GREAT HUMILITY, HE HAS ALREADY LOST IT.
When one begins boasting of his humility, it has already become pride-the antithesis of humility. I have heard men say, "I have the gift of healing. I would like to give you a blessing." That seems to me to be wholly out of line, and I can imagine that it would not be long until the Lord would take away his gift of healing when he was so eager to take the credit and honor for it. . - Spencer W. Kimball

Story: A representative of the devil complained that the man he has been trying to influence on earth is humble and therefore unreachable, the Devil replies, "Yes he is, have you reminded him of that lately?"

HOW TO DEVELOP HUMILITY
Humility develops through prayer and study. Somebody asked me this morning, "How do you keep humble? Sometimes I am humble and sometimes I am unhumble." How do you keep humble? I think there is a formula that will never fail. First, you evaluate yourself. What am I? I am the circle. I am the hole in the doughnut. I would be nothing without the Lord. My breath, my brains, my hearing, my sight, my locomotion, my everything depends upon the Lord. That is the first step and then we pray, and pray often. Well, you can create humility, and humility has to be fed, too, in the same way, with the right kind of vitamins. And when you have success, you do not glory in it for you; you glory in it for the Lord. . - Spencer W. Kimball

Take no honor for healings. I have been impressed at the number of times the Lord said, "Go thy way and tell no man." And I have been led many times in my blessings-when I felt there was going to be special healing, and that they were such people as would go out and shout it from the housetops-to say, "And when you are healed, tell no man who laid his hands upon your head." I think that takes away from me the temptation to want to be spectacular, or to want praise, or to want credit, and from them the urge to publish a sacred, intimate miracle. That relieves me. It leaves me more humble and I am sure then I am in a better position to call down the blessings of the Lord again. Remember when Moses, after long service, said in effect to his people, "How long must I bring you water and food. How long must I do it?" The moment he himself began to be an important element in the performance of the Lord's blessing, he lost his place and was denied entrance into the promised land. As important as he was, Moses was only the mouthpiece of the Lord. - Spencer W. Kimball.

EXAMPLE IN MY LIFE:
1. There was a big conference where Apostle Richard G. Scott and President James E. Faust came to speak to a couple of stakes in Stockton, California's arena at UOP college. When it was over, me and my family happened to see Richard G. Scott. He locked eyes on my younger brother and said, "Hi, I'm Richard. To me he could have said, President or Apostle, but he addressed himself as a man, a friend, a normal person. To me he stripped himself of the Kingliness and Royalness so to speak of himself.
3. Bro. Madsen Mapleton ward in Utah told of all the great and mighty things he has done in his lifetime and great and marvelous opportunities he passed up because of his religion... then says, "I'm a very humble man."


I
IDOLS, IGORANCE, IMAGE, INTEGRITY, INTELLIGENCE
IDOLS

The Book of Jasher 11:13-43

And in the fiftieth year of the life of Abram son of Terah, Abram came forth from the house of Noah, and went to his father's house.
And Abram knew the Lord, and he went in his ways and instructions, and the Lord his God was with him.
And Terah his father was in those days, still captain of the host of king Nimrod, and he still followed strange gods.
And Abram came to his father's house and saw twelve gods standing there in their temples, and the anger of Abram was kindled when he saw these images in his father's house.
And Abram said, As the Lord liveth these images shall not remain in my father's house; so shall the Lord who created me do unto me if in three days' time I do not break them all.
And when Abram had gone from them he went to his mother and sat before her, and he said to his mother, …
Now, therefore, hasten and fetch a kid from the flock, and make of it savory meat, that I may bring it to my father's gods as an offering for them to eat; perhaps I may thereby become acceptable to them.
And his mother did so, and she fetched a kid, and made savory meat thereof, and brought it to Abram, and Abram took the savory meat from his mother and brought it before his father's gods, and he drew nigh to them that they might eat; and Terah his father, did not know of it.
And Abram saw on the day when he was sitting amongst them, that they had no voice, no hearing, no motion, and not one of them could stretch forth his hand to eat.
And in the evening of that day in that house Abram was clothed with the spirit of God.
And when Abram saw all these things his anger was kindled against his father, and he hastened and took a hatchet in his hand, and came unto the chamber of the gods, and he broke all his father's gods.

And when he had done breaking the images, he placed the hatchet in the hand of the great god which was there before them, and he went out; and Terah his father came home, for he had heard at the door the sound of the striking of the hatchet; so Terah came into the house to know what this was about.
And Terah, having heard the noise of the hatchet in the room of images, ran to the room to the images, and he met Abram going out.
And Terah entered the room and found all the idols fallen down and broken, and the hatchet in the hand of the largest, which was not broken, and the savory meat which Abram his son had made was still before them.
And when Terah saw this his anger was greatly kindled, and he hastened and went from the room to Abram.
And he found Abram his son still sitting in the house; and he said to him, What is this work thou hast done to my gods?
And Abram answered Terah his father and he said, Not so my lord, for I brought savory meat before them, and when I came nigh to them with the meat that they might eat, they all at once stretched forth their hands to eat before the great one had put forth his hand to eat.
And the large one saw their works that they did before him, and his anger was violently kindled against them, and he went and took the hatchet that was in the house and came to them and broke them all, and behold the hatchet is yet in his hand as thou seest.
And Terah's anger was kindled against his son Abram, when he spoke this; and Terah said to Abram his son in his anger, What is this tale that thou hast told? Thou speakest lies to me.
Is there in these gods spirit, soul or power to do all thou hast told me? Are they not wood and stone, and have I not myself made them, and canst thou speak such lies, saying that the large god that was with them smote them? It is thou that didst place the hatchet in his hands, and then sayest he smote them all.
And Abram answered his father and said to him, And how canst thou then serve these idols in whom there is no power to do any thing? Can those idols in which thou trustest deliver thee? can they hear thy prayers when thou callest upon them? can they deliver thee from the hands of thy enemies, or will they fight thy battles for thee against thy enemies, that thou shouldst serve wood and stone which can neither speak nor hear?
And now surely it is not good for thee nor for the sons of men that are connected with thee, to do these things; are you so silly, so foolish or so short of understanding that you will serve wood and stone, and do after this manner?
And forget the Lord God who made heaven and earth, and who created you in the earth, and thereby bring a great evil upon your souls in this matter by serving stone and wood?


IGNORANCE

IGNORANCE CAN HURT
There was a farmer in Idaho who sued his well meaning neighbor for the misuse of a deadly chemical herbicide. It seemed that the well-intended neighbor had sprayed both sides of a long private road common to both farms with an herbicide to kill all of the weeds growing there. In his desire to destroy the weeds, he failed to consider the side effects of the wind. As a result, thousands and thousands of dollars’ worth of damage was done to the cash crops growing in the fields. The wind had carried the deadly herbicide far beyond its intended application. So it is with criticism. The judge disregarded the “good” intentions and focused on the consequences of destruction. The well meaning neighbor paid a great price for his ignorance. The judge, although sympathetic, held the well-meaning farmer accountable for the effects of his behavior.

JOURNAL ENTRY:
The setting takes place at a summer ward activity out at the pavilion.
“Today was a very embarrassing day for me at our summer ward party. Someone from the ward brought a little kiddy pool and dumped a bunch of ice in it. Brother Gleason and Brother Rider came up to me with a bunch of brand new bottled water and asked me to put it in the pool. I took the bottled water and went up to the pool and began to open the bottled water and pour the water into the pool. I soon realized what I was doing when Brother Rider stopped me. I was so embarrassed, I felt like crawling under a rock and dying.”
I emailed my dad what happened and he wrote back,
“Mike; that's why you’re the Young Men's President and not the High Priest Group Leader... once you figure things out like that water incident (ahead of time), you'll be ready for bigger and better things.”

IMAGE

(Alma 5:14)
“The human face is an immediate giveaway of our feelings and mode of life. Said the Prophet, ‘You may always discover in the first glance of a man, in the outline of his features, something of his mind.”
–TGM

A man finds room in the few square inches of the face for the traits of all his ancestors; for the expression of all his history, and his wants.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A man's face as a rule says more, and more interesting things, than his mouth, for it is a compendium of everything his mouth will ever say, in that it is the monogram of all this man's thoughts and aspirations.
Arthur Schopenhauer

A man's face is his autobiography. A woman's face is her work of fiction. - Oscar Wilde

A little bit of powder, a little bit of paint, makes a girl’s complexion seem what it ain’t

I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception. - Groucho Marx

The face of a child can say it all, especially the mouth part of the face. -Jack Handy

Every man over forty is responsible for his face. - Abraham Lincoln

Time engraves our faces with all the tears we have not shed. - Natalie Clifford Barney

It has been said that a pretty face is a passport. But it's not, it's a visa, and it runs out fast. - Julie Burchill

The face is the index of the mind. - Proverb



INTEGRITY


WHAT IS INTEGRITY?
There are many definitions of integrity but from my studies… it means to me, standing up for what is right whether alone or with others regardless of the consequences.
“Integrity means to do what you say you will do; you keep promises to yourself. The Young Women program defines integrity as: I will have the moral courage to make my actions consistent with my knowledge of right and wrong. We can easily spot someone with integrity. They’re honest. They do the right thing when nobody is watching. They keep their word and they keep our confidences. They repay their debts, and they clean up their own messes. They accept responsibility for their actions. -Church News
President Hinckley has said: “In all this world there is no substitute for personal integrity. It includes honor. It includes performance. It includes keeping one’s word. It includes doing what is right regardless of the circumstances” - Gordon B. Hinckley

SCRIPTURAL GEMS
The integrity of the upright shall guide them: but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them. Prov 11:3

BETTER [is] the poor that walketh in his integrity, than [he that is] perverse in his lips, and is a fool. Prov 19:1

The just [man] walketh in his integrity: his children [are] blessed after him. Prov 20:7
.
And again, verily I say unto you, blessed is my servant Hyrum Smith; for I, the Lord, love him because of the integrity of his heart, and because he loveth that which is right before me, saith the Lord. D&C 124:15

And again, verily I say unto you, my servant George Miller is without guile; he may be trusted because of the integrity of his heart; and for the love which he has to my testimony I, the Lord, love him. D&C 124:20

EXAMPLES OF INTEGRITY
JOSPEH FIELDING SMITH:
Here is a quick example of integrity. A group of people who worked for the Improvement Era came to see the Prophet Joseph Fielding Smith. They walked into his office and wanted to take his picture for a cover on the improvement era showing beneficial life, of which he was a director, and someone said to him,” Brother Smith here is a pen. Pretend that your signing a letter.”  Now that’s what you would do in an acting situation, but he said,”No I won’t pretend”, and he found a letter he needed to sign, “now I will actually sign a letter.” (The Presidents of The Church by Truman G Madsen)


J
JOY, JUDAS, JUDGEMENT



JOY

Some say that man's happiness is in pleasure. If this were the case, addicts should be happier than everyone else. - Are We Special? P. 88

In an absolutely terrifying way we see…others, roaring full speed down the dead-end road of hedonism, shout that they will indeed live by bread alone, and the more of it the better. We have it on good word, indeed we have it from the Word Himself, that bread alone—even a lot of it—is not enough. - “He Hath Filled the Hungry with Good Things” JEFFREY R. HOLLAND

JUDAS ISCARIOT


NOT A SON OF PERDITION
"If Judas had known God's power, and did actually "deny the truth" "having denied the Holy Spirit after he had received it," and also "denied the Only Begotten," after God had "revealed him" unto him, then there can be no doubt that he "will die the second death."
That Judas did partake of all this knowledge-that these great truths had been revealed to him-that he had received the Holy Spirit by the gift of God, and was therefore qualified to commit the unpardonable sin, is not at all clear to me. To my mind it strongly appears that not one of the disciples possessed sufficient light, knowledge nor wisdom, at the time of the crucifixion, for either exaltation or condemnation; for it was afterward that their minds were opened to understand the scriptures, and that they were endowed with power from on high; without which they were only children in knowledge, in comparison to what they afterwards become under the influence of the Spirit." - Joseph F. Smith

In harmony with the teachings of President Joseph F. Smith, Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote: "Only Judas has been lost; and even he, though a son or follower of Satan . . . is probably not a son of perdition in the sense of eternal damnation" – Bruce R. McConkie

THE KISS
The Greek word Matthew used to describe Judas’s kiss, kataphileo, means “to kiss earnestly, intensely.” It is used elsewhere in certain stories in the Gospels to imply a deep, affectionate, reverential worship of Jesus. – Andrew C. Skinner

JUDGEMENT

LORD WILL GIVE LEAST PUNISHMENT POSSI BLE
"I feel that [the Lord] will give that punishment which is the very least that our transgression will justify. . . . I believe that when it comes to making the rewards for our good conduct, he will give the maximum that is possible to give.” - President J. Reuben Clark Jr.

JUDGEMENT BAR QUESTIONS
The message I believe is that the question hereafter will not be, "Why didn’t you give me more evidence?" The question will be put to us, "How did you manage to suppress the invincible evidence within, the light given you from before the foundation of the world?" -TGM


K
KNEELING, KNOWLEDGE
KNEELING

OUR HEARTS CAN KNEEL
“…but while our body is sitting, or even lying down in a sick bed, our spirit can kneel: ‘Heart up while head is down. ‘The scriptural symbolism is rich. Camels kneel to receive or unload their ladings or burdens. In resting places they kneel by reservoirs. Lambs kneel to be fed by their mothers. For neither water nor milk nor divine blessings flow uphill. –TGM

KNOWLEDGE

OUR LEARNING CONTINUES
I shall not cease learning while I live, nor when I arrive in the spirit-world; but shall there learn with greater facility; and when I again receive my body, I shall learn a thousand times more in a thousand times less time; and then I do not mean to cease learning, but shall still continue my researches. –Brigham Young

“There is an eternity of mystery to be unfolded to us; and when we have lived millions of years in the presence of God and angels, and have associated with heavenly beings, shall we then cease learning? No, or eternity ceases. There is no end. We go from grace to grace, from light to light, from truth to truth.” – Brigham Young Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. 6: p.344

We are like infants in our understanding of eternal matters and yet we act as if we know it all. – Richard G. Scott

There is no end to matter;
There is no end to space;
There is no end to spirit;
There is no end to race.

There is no end to virtue;
There is no end to might;
There is no end to wisdom;
There is no end to light.
There is no end to union;
There is no end to youth;
There is no end to priesthood;
There is no end to truth.

There is no end to glory;
There is no end to love;
There is no end to being;
There is no death above.
There is no end to glory;
There is no end to love;
There is no end to being;
There is no death above.

GOD KNOWS ALL THINGS
God is omniscient. (Lectures on Faith) Omniscience consists in having unlimited knowledge. God knows all things (2 Ne. 9:20; D. & C. 38:1-2; 88:7-13); possesses "a fullness of truth, yea, even of all truth" (D. & C. 93:11, 26); "has all power, all wisdom, and all understanding" (Alma 26:35); is infinite in understanding (Ps. 147:4-5); comprehends all things (Alma 26:35; D. & C. 88:41); and "hath given a law unto all things." (D. & C. 88:42.)   
Joseph Smith said: "Without the knowledge of all things God would not be able to save any portion of his creatures; ... and if it were not for the idea existing in the minds of men that God had all knowledge it would be impossible for them to exercise faith in him." (Lectures on Faith, p. 44.) - Bruce R. McConkie

Our Lord knows all things. He has all power. He has foreseen every contingency. He is not a grand cosmic laboratory experimenter who might have to run back and check the books to figure out an answer if he bumps up against a problem he has not confronted before. – Andrew C. Skinner

L
LAUGHTER, LISTEN
LAUGHTER

NEGATIVE LAUGHTER AND LIGHT-MINDEDNESS
Light-mindedness, in the dictionary sense, is a lack of seriousness, and in the present context can include such attitudes as lack of interest in, making light of, betrayal of, flippant or frivolous approach to, even a ridiculing of, sacred things.

Amusement, laughter, light-mindedness, are all out of place in the sacrament meetings of the Latter-day Saints. – Joseph Fielding Smith

Trifle not with sacred things. -D&C 6:12

Remember the great and last promise which I have made unto you; cast away your idle thoughts and your excess of laughter far from you. D&C 88:69

Therefore, cease from all your light speeches, from all laughter, from all your lustful desires, from all your pride and light-mindedness, and from all your wicked doings.-D&C 88:121

And inasmuch as ye do these things with thanksgiving, with cheerful hearts and countenances, not with much laughter, for this is sin, but with a glad heart and a cheerful countenance-D&C 59:15

But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. - Matt. 12:36

Laman and Lemuel "began to make themselves merry, insomuch that they began to dance, and to sing, and to speak with much rudeness, 1 Ne 18:10

Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep. Luke 6:25

"The laughter of the world is merely loneliness pathetically trying to reassure itself."- Neal A. Maxwell
3Even in laughter the heart is sorrowful; and the end of that mirth [is] heaviness.

LEARN TO LAUGH
Nowhere in the scriptures is lightheartedness condemned, nor again does scripture anywhere forbid a genuine, gentle humor that shows an appreciation for the foibles of ourselves and others. – TGM

Blessed [are ye] that weep now: for ye shall laugh. Luke 6:21
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; Eccl 3:4

The first thing we can do is learn to laugh. Have you ever seen an angry driver who, when someone else makes a mistake, reacts as though that person has insulted his honor, his family, his dog, and his ancestors all the way back to Adam? Or have you had an encounter with an overhanging cupboard door left open at the wrong place and the wrong time which has been cursed, condemned, and avenged by a sore-headed victim?
There is an antidote for times such as these: learn to laugh. The next time you're tempted to groan, you might try to laugh instead. It will extend your life and make the lives of all those around you more enjoyable. - Wirthlin, Joseph B., Come CR October 2008


LISTEN

One of the Prophet's gifts was that he was a powerful listener. There are listeners who are weak as water, not listening at all, not hearing, not interpreting from the center self.  TGM

"If you will listen to the first promptings you will get it right nine times out of ten." Joseph Smith

He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. Matt 11:15

Why speakest thou unto them in parables?
Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:
But blessed [are] your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.-Matt 13:10-16

LUKE

MAIN EMPHASIS IS ON THE UNIVERSALITY OF JESUS' TEACHINGS:
a. Written to Theophilus, a Gentile Christian acquaintance.
b. Emphasis upon Jesus' teachings, especially the parables.  
c. Apparently used Paul as a major source of information.  
d. Has a strong Gentile appeal, as contrasted with the Jewish emphasis in Matthew.

SOME MATERIAL EXCLUSIVE TO LUKE:
a. Visits of Gabriel to Zacharias and to Mary.  (Luke 1)   
b. Births of John the Baptist and Jesus, circumcision, Anna, and Simeon's prophecies.  (Luke 1,   2)   
c. Jesus at the temple at age 12.  (Luke 2:41-52)   
d. Twelve parables that the others do not have.  
e. Only one to mention the Seventy.  (Luke 10:1-25)   
f. Only one to tell of Jesus' sweating blood.  (Luke 22:44)   
g. Jesus' discussion with a thief about paradise.  (Luke 23: 39-43)  
h. Jesus eating fish and honey after resurrection.  (Luke 24: 41-43)
SOME PECULIARITIES OF THE BOOK OF LUKE:
a. Special attention to illness and medical terms-circumcision, Jesus sweating blood, withered right hand, leprosy, healing of Malchus's ear.  
b. Emphasis on prayer. More frequent mention of prayer than in any of the other records.  
c. More attention to women and stories about women than any of the other records.  
d. An emphasis on individual salvation, and the salvation of Gentiles, as contrasted to the salvation of the house of Israel.  

M
MARK, MATTHEW, MARRIAGE, MEEK, MILLENIUM, MIRACLES, MORNING STAR, MUSTARD SEED, MURDER, MYTHS,

MARK

MAIN EMPHASIS IS ON THE DOINGS OF JESUS:
a. Written to Gentile (most likely Roman) members of the Church.  
b. Apparently used Peter as a chief source of information.  
c. Emphasis is upon acts rather than upon teachings and discourses. No long sermons.  
d. Great emphasis upon miraculous events.  
e. Seems to emphasize the Galilean ministry rather than Jesus' ministry in Judea.

SOME MATERIAL EXCLUSIVE TO MARK:
a. One exclusive parable.  (Mark 4:26-29)   
b. A young man wearing a sheet.  (Mark 14:51-52)   
c. Signs that follow believers.  (Mark 16:17-18)

SOME PECULIARITIES OF THE BOOK OF MARK:
a. Emphasis upon Jesus' physically resting. Eleven places mention Jesus resting; this is more than in any other record.  
b. The only one to mention that Jesus was a carpenter.  (Mark 6:3)   

MATTHEW

MAIN EMPHASIS IS TOWARD THE JEWS:
a. Apparently written to and for Jewish readers.  
b. Places great emphasis on fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy, and presents Jesus as the fulfillment of that prophecy.

SOME MATERIAL EXCLUSIVE TO MATTHEW:
a. Visit of the wise men; a star in the east.  (Matt. 2:1-12)   
b. Flight into Egypt.  (Matt. 2:13-14)   
c. Slaying of the Bethlehem children.  (Matt. 2:16-18)   
d. Sermon on the Mount.  (Matt. 5,   6,   7)   
e. Ten parables that the others do not have.

MARRIAGE

THE CATHOLICS RESPONSE TO MARRIAGE
"Let me report a conversation. Here is a world class scholar who has written a two volume work on the Gospel of John. He is a Catholic. He asks one of the leaders of the church if he can see the inside of the temple before its dedication and I am assigned to be his guide. I said to him "Father why after all are you not married?" He knew I didn’t want the classical answers, "simply this is tradition and this is what the pope requires. So he thought a minute and says, "because the things of this world do not finally matter." And I replied, "notice you have made 2 assumptions, number 1 you assume that marriage is of this world only. Who told you that? And second you assume that anything that has to do with this world is for that very reason inferior or to be rejected and doesn’t finally matter." And after a pause I said, "And you’re the ones that have changed the beatitudes." He said, "what do you mean?" "Well blessed are the meek for they shall inherit what?" He said, "The earth." I said, but on your view who wants it?"  TGM

MEEKNESS

There would be little reason for speaking to you of meekness if you were not serious candidates for the celestial kingdom. You live in coarsening times, times in which meekness is both misunderstood and even despised. Yet meekness has been, is, and will remain a nonnegotiable dimension of true discipleship—a remarkable achievement, but especially in this age.
The Greek rendition of the word meek in the New Testament, by the way, is “gentle and humble.” In fact, if one needs any further persuasion as to how vital this virtue is, Moroni warned, “none is acceptable before God, save the meek and lowly in heart.” (Moro. 7:43–44.)
God, who has seen billions of spirits pass through His plan of salvation, has told us to be meek in order to enhance our enjoyment of life Even so, why the stress on meekness? Merely because it is nice to be nice?

HOW IS MEEKNESS AQUIRED?
Meekness is one of those attributes acquired only by experience; some of it painful, for it is developed “according to the flesh.” (Alma 7:11–12.) It is not an attribute achieved overnight, nor is it certified to in only one exam—but, rather, “in process of time.” (Moses 7:21, 68–69.) The Savior said we are to “take up [the] cross daily”—not just once or occasionally. (Luke 9:23.) His rigorous requirement places a premium upon our having meekness.
I do not say that the development of meekness is easy. There are strivings and struggles and setbacks, and we inch forward when we would prefer to run. Even when we make some progress, there is the sober realization that our very best meekness is but a pale copy of Jesus’ meekness. But it is “a type and a shadow of things which are to come.” (Mosiah 13:10.) None of the divine virtues is easy to develop. But each is possible and portable. None of them will ever be obsolete.
Besides, what are the alternatives?
Yes, there are real costs associated with meekness. A significant down payment must be made. But it can come from our sufficient supply of pride. We must also be willing to endure the subsequent erosion of unbecoming ego. Furthermore, our hearts will be broken in order that they might be rebuilt. As Ezekiel said, one’s task is to “make you a new heart and a new spirit.” (Ezek. 18:31.) There is no way that such dismantling, such erosion, such rebuilding can occur without real cost in pain, pride, adjustments, and even some dismay. Yet since we cannot be “acceptable before God save [we are] meek and lowly in heart” (Moro. 7:44), the reality of that awesome requirement must be heeded! Better to save one’s soul than to save one’s face.


MEEKNESS IS NOT WEAKNESS
Many equate the meek with the weak but meekness is the opposite of weakness. We even make nervous jokes about meekness, such as, “If the meek intend to inherit the earth, they are going to have to be more aggressive about it!” We even tend to think of a meek individual as being used and abused—as being a doormat for others. However, Moses was once described as being the most meek man on the face of the earth (see Num. 12:3), yet we recall his impressive boldness in the courts of Pharaoh and his scalding indignation following his descent from Sinai.
President Brigham Young, who was tested in many ways and on many occasions, was once tried in a way that required him to “take it”—even from one he so much adored and admired. Brigham “took it” because he was meek. Yet, surely, none of us sitting here would think of Brigham Young as lacking in boldness or firmness! However, even President Young, in the closing and prestigious days his spent some time in courtrooms being unjustifiably abused. When he might have chosen to assert himself politically, he “took it”—meekly. (See Francis M. Gibbons, Brigham Young: Modern Moses/Prophet of God, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1981, pp. 242–54.)

WHAT IS MEEKNESS?
1. The Meek are filled with awe and wonder with regard to God and His purposes in the universe.

2. The meek are not awestruck by the many frustrations of life; they are more easily mobilized for eternal causes and less easily immobilized by the disappointments of the day.

3. Because they make fewer demands of life, the meek are less easily disappointed.

4. They are less concerned with their entitlements than with their assignments.

5. We are not concerned with being pushed around, but are grateful to be pushed along.

6. We do not engage in shoulder-shrugging acceptance but in shoulder-squaring, in order that we might better bear the burdens of life and of our fellow beings.

7. Meekness can also help us in coping with the injustices of life—of which there are quite a few.

8. Meekness even in silence, as was the case when Jesus meekly stood, unjustly accused, before Pilate. Silence can be an expression of strength. Holding back can be the sign of great personal discipline, especially when everyone else is letting go. But even when the meek speak up, they do so without speaking down.

9. The meek are less easily offended, but they are less likely to give offense to others.

10. Meekness also cultivates in us a generosity in viewing the mistakes and imperfections of others: “Condemn me not because of mine imperfection, neither my father, because of his imperfection, … but rather give thanks unto God that he hath made manifest unto you our imperfections, that ye may learn to be more wise than we have been.” (Morm. 9:31.)

11. And for those of us who are too concerned about status or being last in line or losing our place, we need to reread those words about how the “last shall be first” and the “first shall be last.” (Matt. 19:30.)

12. Granted, the meek go on fewer ego trips,

13. Meekness means less concern over being taken for granted, and more concern over being taken by the hand.

14. Less concern over revising our own plans for us and more concern about adopting His plans for us is another sure sign of meekness.

15. Meekness does not mean tentativeness. But thoughtfulness. Meekness makes room for others: “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” (Philip. 2:3.)

16. True meekness is never proud of itself, never conscious of itself.

17. There is usually more listening and less talking.

18. The meek think of more clever things to say than are said. And it’s just as well, for there is so much more cleverness in the world than wisdom, so much more sarcasm than idealism.

19. The meek are thus able to avoid the abuse of authority and power—a tendency to which, the Lord declared, “almost all” succumb. Except the meek. The meek use power and authority properly, no doubt because their gentleness and meekness reflect a love unfeigned, a genuine caring. The influence they exercise flows from a deep concern: “No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned.” (D&C 121:41.)

20. Meekness rests on trust and courage. It is reflected in Nephi’s meek acceptance of an assignment, saying, “I will go and do …” (1 Ne. 3:7) without knowing beforehand all the implications of what he was undertaking.

21. Meekness permits us to be confident, as was Nephi, of that which we do know—even when we do not know the meaning of all other things. (See 1 Ne. 11:17.)

Meekness constitutes a continuing invitation to continuing education. No wonder the Lord reveals His secrets to the meek, for they are “easy to be entreated.” (Alma 7:23.) Not only are the meek more teachable, but they continuously receive, with special appreciation, “the engrafted word,” as the Apostle James said—and, as Joseph Smith declared, the flow of pure intelligence—all from the divine databank. (James 1:21; Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1938, p. 15

MILLENNIUM

When men live to the age of a tree, their food will be fruit. – Brigham Young

MIRACLE

WHAT IS A MIRACLE?
Miracle is the term we use for the operation of divine power beyond our understanding. It is not a violation of law. Every miracle that Christ performed, including the creation of the earth, was executed in harmony with eternal principles. We will one day know that whatever we call miraculous was, in fact lawful. – TGM


MORNING STAR

The phrase, “the morning star”, is used sometimes for the devil, and the symbolism there is that the morning star is also the evening star. It is only apparent at night during darkness and when the sun rises, it disappears. And that is the ultimate destiny of Satan in terms of his influence. He will be eclipsed by the power and glory of God.
But in the meantime the revelation says, he makes war with the saints. –TGM

Morning is often equated with the Resurrection, with the rising of the sun recalling the rising of the Son. – Amen

The morning star and the evening star are the same star. Both defy the darkness. Each testifies of daylight as a vivid memory and as a bright alert to its imminent return.  – TGM

MURDERERS

"Thou shalt not kill." (Ex. 20:13.) "Thou shalt do no murder." (Matt. 19:18.) Murder, the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought or under such circumstances of criminality that the malice is presumed, "is a sin unto death" (1 John 5:16-17), a sin for which there is "no forgiveness" (D. & C. 42:79), meaning that a murderer can never gain salvation. "No murderer hath eternal life abiding in him." (1 John 3:15.) He cannot join the Church by baptism; he is outside the pale of redeeming grace.
The Jews on whose hands the blood of Christ was found were not invited to repent and be baptized. (Acts 3:19-21.)   
Murderers are forgiven eventually but only in the sense that all sins are forgiven except the sin against the Holy Ghost; they are not forgiven in the sense that celestial salvation is made available to them. (Matt. 12:31-32; Teachings, p. 356-357.) After they have paid the full penalty for their crime, they shall go on to a telestial inheritance. (Rev. 22:15.)

MUSTARD SEED

“I am advised that the Harvard University was started by a few clergymen coming together and donating a few books-a small beginning! Most of the New England colleges were started in the same way.” –BYU Speeches Alman Sonne

“As a child I thought, the lesson is, if you just have that little itsy bitsy faith, you can move mountains. That is not the message. The message is that if you have growing faith it will have such power.” –TGM
See Matthew 13:31-32

MYTHS

It never ceases to amaze me how gullible some of our Church members are in broadcasting sensational stories, or dreams, or visions, or purported patriarchal blessings, or quotations, or supposedly from some person's private diary. – Harold B. Lee

1. A Catholic Monk in 1739 that fore-told of the restoration of the true church within one hundred years.
Lutius Gratiano, writing in The Hope of Zion, which was printed in 1739, in Basel City, Switzerland, said:
"The old true gospel and the gifts thereof are lost, false doctrines prevail in every church and in all the lands. All we can do is to exhort the people to be just, fear God, and shun evil, and to pray, pray.
"Prayer and purity may cause an angel to visit a deep and distracted soul, but I tell you that God in one hundred years will again have spoken. He will restore the church again.
"I see a little people led by a prophet and faithful elders. They are persecuted, burnt out and murdered, but in a valley that lies on the shore of a great lake they will grow and make a beautiful Henlick (land), have a temple of magnificent splendor, and also possess the old priesthood, with apostles, prophets, teachers and deacons. From every nation will the true believers be gathered by speedy messengers. And then will the God Almighty speak to the disobedient nation with thunders' and lightning’s' destructions, such as was never heard of in history before."

For my part, I am free to admit, that I regard it as a "fake" and a fraud. About ten years ago, while visiting the Swiss and German Mission, I came to Basel, Switzerland, and having previously been shown a typewritten document almost if not exactly a copy of the article quoted above, I resolved to visit the library and, if possible, obtain the book. Through the courtesy of Herr Romell, a local emigration agent, with whom we had transacted considerable business, I succeeded in getting the book, Zion's Hoffnung, or, The Hope of Zion, by Lutius Gratiano, printed in the year 1739. Jointly with Elder Peter Loutensock, then presiding in that mission, I read it from start to finish, and, much to my regret and disappointment, I found in it no such prediction, and nothing that even resembled it. It was a book on piety, written by a devout Christian; at times it was almost prophetic, but it contained nothing that would justify the statement quoted above, or the document which had been shown to me. Dr. David L. McDonald, who, in 1901, presided over the Swiss Mission, subsequently visited this library, obtained the book, and read it, and, of course, was equally unsuccessful in finding the alleged prediction. One would think that editors of newspapers and magazines would verify such remarkable statements before permitting them to be published. (Improvement Era, 1908, Vol. XI. January 1908. No. 3, A Fraudulent Prophecy Exposed. By Elder Rulon S. Wells of the First Council of Seventy.)

The Church Historian's Office holds no credency to the prophecy, and its circulation should be discontinued.

2. The White Horse Prophecy.
This supposed prophecy purports to be a long and detailed account by the Prophet Joseph Smith concerning the wars, turmoil’s, and difficulties which should exist in the last days.
President Joseph F. Smith said: "The ridiculous story about the 'red horse,' and 'the black horse,' and 'the white horse,' and a lot of trash that has been circulated about, and printed, and sent around as a great revelation given by the Prophet Joseph Smith, is a matter that was gotten up, I understand, some ten years after the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith, by two of our brethren, who put together some broken sentences from the Prophet that they may have heard him utter from time to time, and formulated this so-called revelation out of it, and it was never spoken by the Prophet in the manner in which they have put it forth. It is simply false; that is all there is to it.   (B. McConkie Mormon Doctrine)

N
NAKED, NAME, NEW JERUSALEM, NOAHS CURSE
NAKED MAN

An apocryphal document called The Secret Gospel of Mark, which claims to be a fuller account of Mark's Gospel, indicates that the man in the linen cloth was a disciple of the Master who had come to Gethsemane to receive from the Savior special teachings related to the mysteries of the kingdom. Be that as it may, we do not know the identity of the young man in Mark's story, though one tradition holds that it was Mark himself.
– Andrew C. Skinner

"The disciples, who gave up everything to follow Christ, in a great moment of need, give up everything to get away from him; in fact, it is illustrated quite graphically in the account of Mark. Mark 14: 51-52. Where a young man wanders in dressed in a linen sheet and when they try to grab him he is so desperate to get away that he throws off his clothes and leaves himself naked. It’s an odd little passage, and people wear themselves out what is going on here, but I THINK THIS IS SYMBOLISM. These disciples have given everything up to follow him and now they are giving everything up, even the clothes on their backs, to get away from him."


NAME AND A BLESSING

“With circumcision was connected the giving of a name; but there is no express mention of this custom until N.T. Times. It would follow naturally from the fact that:
Abram named changed to Abraham at the institution of the ordinance. (Gen. 17:5, 10-14)
John given his name and blessing. – Even when the angel Gabriel gave it a name. (Luke1:59)
Jesus given his name. – Even when the angel Gabriel gave it a name. (Luke 2:21)

We are given a name and a blessing when we are born into this mortal world. We are given a name and a blessing when we are born again in the eternal world hereafter. A new name on a white stone.

THE NEW JERUSALEM

  1. New Jerusalem BEFORE Christ comes.
"Zion and Jerusalem must both be built up before the coming of Christ . . . and when these cities are built then shall the coming of the Son of man be."  -JS
  1. New Jerusalem Built In Jackson County Missouri.

NOAH’S CURSE

GENESIS 9:18-27
Tradition states that Noah possessed a special item of clothing that had been handed down by his ancestors since Adam. Some argue that this clothing had been given by God to Adam in the Garden of Eden, and that it still carried the “smell of paradise.” Some traditions also state that this garment conferred upon whoever wore it supernatural powers (priesthood?) The text claims that Canaan (or Ham in some sources) stole Noah’s garment and claimed to have Noah’s power. When Noah came to himself and learned what had happened, he punished them. – Blacks and the Mormon Priesthood

O
OBEDIENCE, OFFENDED, OIL, OPINIONS, OPTIMISM, OX
OBEDIENCE

The prophet says only one earring per ear. A small thing? Or Hard thing?

In my experience I never did let an opportunity pass of getting with the Prophet Joseph and of hearing him speak in public or in private, so that I might draw understanding from the fountain from which he spoke, that I might have it and bring it forth when it was needed. . . .   
In the days of the Prophet Joseph, such moments were more precious to me than all the wealth of the world. No matter how great my poverty- if I had to borrow meal to feed my wife and children, I never let an opportunity pass of learning what the Prophet had to impart. This is the secret of success of your humble servant. – Brigham Young

If you were driving along a highway and saw this sign, “Speed limit, 24.5,” you would likely think something like “Hmmm… that’s odd. The police must really mean business. That’s an awfully specific speed limit. They must mean ’24.5’ I think I’ll slow down.”

THEY DIDN’T EVEN COMPLETE THE BURIAL PROCEEDURE!
And yet, though they may have been anxious to complete the burial procedures, they kept the Sabbath! Their reason for observing the day of rest was that it was the commandment of the Mosaic Law, and they were obedient. They obeyed with exactness even when the circumstances were at their worst! See Luke 23:56-Luke 24:1

OFFENDED

POISONOUS SNAKE BITE
President Brigham Young once compared being offended to a poisonous snakebite. He said that “there are two courses of action to follow when one is bitten by a rattlesnake. One may, in anger, fear, or vengefulness, pursue the creature and kill it. Or he may make full haste to get the venom out of his system.” He said, “If we pursue the latter course we will likely survive, but if we attempt to follow the former, we may not be around long enough to finish it.”

THOMAS B. MARSH
While living in Far West, Missouri, Sister Marsh and Sister Harris decided to exchange milk so they could each make a larger cheese than they otherwise could. They agreed to send each other both the milk and the cream from their cows. But Sister Marsh saved a pint of cream from each cow and sent Sister Harris the milk without the cream.
A quarrel arose, and the matter was referred to the bishop. When he determined that Sister Marsh had violated her agreement, she and her husband were upset and appealed the matter to the high council and then to the First Presidency. Each council approved the original decision that Sister Marsh had been in error.
Thomas B. Marsh declared that he would sustain the character of his wife. Soon afterward, he turned against the Church and went before a government official to declare that the Latter-day Saints were hostile toward the state of Missouri. (See George A. Smith, in Journal of Discourses, 3:283-84.)
Thomas B. Marsh, the first President of the Quorum of the Twelve, sided with his wife in an argument over a little cream. He would not let the matter drop and carried it to the highest councils of the Church. He lost his place and never fully regained it. He dropped the ball at a crucial time and has been remembered ever since for what he did.
The Lord is forgiving, but sometimes life is not forgiving.
In the world in which we walk we must be careful. The temptations are tremendous. We all know about them. The little decisions can be so crucial and so everlastingly important in their consequences.
President Gordon B. Hinckley, Don’t Drop the Ball, Ensign (CR), November 1994, p.46

“Many have said to me,” he continued, “ ‘How is it that a man like you, who understood so much of the revelations of God as recorded in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, should fall away?’ I told them not to feel too secure, but to take heed lest they also should fall; for I had no scruples in my mind as to the possibility of men falling away.”
President Gordon B. Hinckley, Small Acts Lead to Great Consequences, Ensign (CR), May 1984, p.81
He continued, “I can say, in reference to the Quorum of the Twelve, to which I belonged, that I did not consider myself a whit behind any of them, and I suppose that others had the same opinion; but, let no one feel too secure; for, before you think of it, your steps will slide. You will not then think nor feel for a moment as you did before you lost the Spirit of Christ; for when men apostatize, they are left to grovel in the dark.” (Journal of Discourses, 5:206.)

Some seeds fell upon stony places in the early days of the Church when the Prophet Joseph Smith issued calls to several converts to serve as missionaries. One of them was Simonds Ryder, who was ordained an elder on June 6, 1831, by Joseph Smith. After reading the revelation that pertained to him and finding that his name had been spelled “Rider” instead of “Ryder,” he became offended, apparently unaware that Joseph Smith often dictated revelations to his scribes. His disillusionment over the misspelling of his name led not only to his apostasy but ultimately to his infamy in helping to tar and feather the Prophet Joseph.  Like the seed that fell upon stony places, Simonds Ryder joyfully received the word at first but quickly became offended over a trivial matter and lost his place in the kingdom of God. He later was one of the apostate leaders who headed a mob to tar and feather Joseph Smith.

As a victim, do not waste effort in revenge or retribution against your aggressor. Whatever they do, eventually the guilty will face the Perfect Judge.
Understand that healing can take considerable time. Recovery generally comes in steps. It is accelerated when gratitude is expressed to the Lord for every degree of improvement you feel. During prolonged recovery from massive surgery, a patient anticipates complete healing in patience, trusting in others’ care. He does not always understand the importance of the treatment prescribed, but his obedience speeds recovery. So it is with you struggling to heal the scars of abuse. – Richard G. Scott

JOSEPH SLANDERS BRIGHAM YOUNG
Illustrative of this is a story still carried in the family lore of Brigham Young's descendants but, so far as I know, never recorded. It says that in a meeting the Prophet rebuked Brigham Young from his head to his feet for something he had done, or something he was supposed to have done but hadn't-the detail is unclear. And it may well have been that the Prophet was deliberately putting Brigham Young to a test. When he had finished the rebuke, everyone in the room waited for the response. Brigham Young rose to his feet. He was a strong man. He could have responded: "Now, look, haven't you read that you're not supposed to rebuke in public, but only in private?" Or, "Brother Joseph, doesn't it say something in the revelations about persuasion, and long-suffering, and gentleness and meekness?" Or, "You're dead wrong. It's not so." But he said none of the above. In a voice everyone could tell was sincere, he said simply, "Joseph, what do you want me to do?" And the story says that the Prophet burst into tears, came down from the stand, threw his arms around Brigham, and said, in effect, "Brother Brigham, you passed."  - TGM

PARLEY P. PRATT OFFENDED
Parley P. Pratt records a time when he was much troubled because of a severe censure from a Church leader that he felt was unjustified. He came to the Prophet and laid it on him. One of the Prophet's gifts was that he was a powerful listener-and although that phrase might seem like a contradiction in terms, it is not. There are listeners who are weak as water, not listening at all, not hearing, not interpreting from the center self. Joseph listened powerfully. And to Elder Pratt he now listened sympathetically. Then he blessed him, encouraged him, and added, "Walk such things under your feet." Meaning, of course, "It's trivial by comparison with your calling-don't let it wear you down." Elder Pratt recorded: "I was comforted, encouraged, filled with new life."   

DON’T BE OFFENDED
When a parent describes to his child the pain and suffering that may result from playing with electrical outlets, he may have to use rather ominous predictions and graphically plain terms. But it is plain that this parent is motivated out of love for the child, not out of some desire to see him cowering in fear. So it is with God. – so don’t become offended for someone trying to correct you. – Richard G. Scott

SATAN MAGNIFIES THE ‘OFFENSE’
For his evil purposes Satan will always greatly magnify the impact of a perceived slight or criticism. He tempts us to expand and distort an offense far beyond its true significance. Communication between humans can be very complex. The normal meaning of words can be profoundly altered by inflection, tone, and body language. Even past experiences between individuals can greatly modify the meaning, connotation, and implied intent of phrases used in ordinary conversation. We must be aware that what is innocently said can, under the influence of Satan, become raw material for a quarrel, an acrimonious exchange, a destroyed friendship, or, in an extreme case, even the cause of death. – Richard G. Scott


MAN OFFENDED AT CHURCH
Many years ago, when I was first called as bishop, I had a desire to visit those who were less active in the ward to see if there was anything I could do to bring the blessings of the gospel more fully into their lives.
One day I met with a man in his fifties who was a fine and respected mechanic. He told me the last time he had been to church was when he was a young boy. Something had happened that day. He had been acting up in class and was being nosier than he should when his teacher became angry, pulled him out of class, and told him not to come back.
He never did.
It was remarkable to me that an unkind word spoken more than four decades earlier could have had such a profound effect. But it had. And, as consequence, this man had never again set foot inside the church. Neither had his wife or children.
I apologized to him and expressed my sorrow that he had been treated that way. I told him how unfortunate it was that one incident- one word spoken in haste, and so long ago-could have the effect of excluding his family from the blessings that come from church activity.
“After forty years,” I told him, “it’s time the church made things right.”
I did my best to do so. I reassured him that he was welcome and needed. I was pleased when this man and his family eventually returned to church and became strong and faithful members. In particular, this good brother became an effective home teacher because he understood how something as small as an unkind word could have consequences that extend throughout a lifetime and perhaps beyond. – L. Tom Perry ‘Press On’

BEING OFFENDED IS A CHOICE
"Certainly clumsy, embarrassing, unprincipled, and mean spirited things do occur in our interactions with other people that would allow us to take offense. However, it ultimately is impossible for another person to offend you or to offend me. Indeed, believing that another person offended us is fundamentally false. To be offended is a choice we make; it is not a condition inflicted or imposed upon us by someone or something else."
(David A. Bednar, "And Nothing Shall Offend Them," Ensign, Nov. 2006, 90)


It has been my experience working as Young Men’s President that the greatest temptations and problems arise with adults of the ward. Specifically the Leaders of the church. There is much correction involved in leading the saints. To those who are corrected for errors made, you have a choice to make. You can harbor feelings of hate and resentment and have an attitude of being unforgiving OR you can decide to love the correction and thank him or her for it. Here is a personal story that happened in my life that relates to what I am trying to say:
Each year for Young Men’s and Young Women’s we have an auction to raise money for scouting and girl’s camp. This is a highly stressful time for us leaders. There is much planning to do. One Tuesday night a meeting was held and the meeting went over about 8 min. YM and YW start at 7pm. My meeting went 6:30pm to 7:08pm. Bishop was irritated at me for starting late. After the opening exercises was completed and everyone was dismissed I approached him to say hi. He was determined to correct me. He looked at his watch and pointed to it and said, “we need to start on time.” I said, “OK” and walked away.
This was very disturbing to me. His attitude towards me and his correction was not the way it should have been handled BUT HE WAS RIGHT! I need to start meetings on time and end on time. I held hateful feelings toward him for a couple of weeks. This was totally contrary to what the apostles and prophets and scriptures teach us. We are to forgive and learn from that experience.

ONE ON ONE IS LESS OFFENSIVE
“Bro. Lee and Elder Romney were always teaching. They would in a sense go out of their way to tell me something or to teach me something. I think the reason they did it, I’m not sure they ever saw me in this position, or calling, but I had one virtue. I wanted to learn and I didn’t resent it. If you don’t resent it and you want to learn then the Lord will keep teaching you. Sometimes things that you think you really didn’t want to know.
Sometimes when I would see Bro. Romney sometimes he would say, “Kid, I want to tell you something.” I knew it was coming now. He was going to tell me something I was doing that I shouldn’t do. And I would always thank him.
One on One teaching is very powerful. Generally one on one teaching is what happens when you are corrected. That’s another principle of teaching. - Boyed K. Packer


OIL

OIL MEDICATION
It’s now known medically that if you don’t know what a poison is that you have taken and don’t know what the antidote is, use olive oil. It is an antidote for more poisons than any single substance we know about. –TGM

The olive tree is an evergreen, not a deciduous tree. Its leaves do not seasonally fade nor fall. Through scorching heat and winter cold they are continually rejuvenated. – Jeffrey R. Holland

OPINIONS

In my experience I never did let an opportunity pass of getting with the Prophet Joseph and of hearing him speak in public or in private, so that I might draw understanding from the fountain from which he spoke, that I might have it and bring it forth when it was needed. . . .  

OPTIMISM

DEFINITION OF OPTIMISM
*Positive attitude, thinking, perception, reaction.
*See the world as a positive place
*Belief everything beautiful, including ugly
*A man marred by lion, takes time enjoy scenery.
*Expression faith in Jesus promises

DEFINITION OF PESSIMISM
*Negative attitude, thinking, perception, reaction.
*See the world as a negative place
*Instead of looking at beauty of flower; focus on thorns.
*2 men look out window. One mud, other stars


PARABLE OF THE WELL
*Deep well of water
*above pulley; on it rope
*Pull rope; bucket up water bucket down replenish
*people used well; not know talk
*one optimist; other pessimist

Pessimistic bucket:
“I hate being in a cold, dark, wet hole all my life.
I work hard every day, but no matter how many times I give water to others; they never thank me for it.
The worst part is that I am not succeeding.
No matter how many times I come up full I always go down empty.”

Optimistic bucket:
“I wish I could share the beauty of my life with you.
When I feel myself rising I wonder, ‘will there be sunlight, or will there be glistening stars?
Will it be that young boy who takes water for the garden of his mother, or the little girl who helps the mother make bread?’
I love to come up because I can always help someone else.
They don’t know that I can talk, so they thank me with their eyes.
The best part is, no matter how many times I go down empty, I always come up full.”


JOSEPH SMITHS WAS AN OPTIMIST
An Example recorded by Jesse Crosby. It’s of a women who felt she had been maligned unjustly because of gossip.
“The little evils,” said the prophet Joseph Smith, “do the most damage in the church.” But this sister had been troubled and came and asked for redress.  She wanted the prophet now to go to the person who was the source, and properly take care. He inquired of her in some detail and said, “Sister, when I have heard of a story about me”, and he could have said, “there have been many”. “I sit down and think about it and pray about it. And I ask myself the question, did I say something or was there something about my manner to give some basis for that story to start. And sister, Often, if I think about It long enough, I realize I have done something to give that basis. And there wells up in me a forgiveness of the person who has said it. And a resolve that I will never do it again.”
Pessimist: Joseph Smith’s comments could have included, “The world hates me. Why should I even try?
Optimist: Joseph Smith looked at everything as a way to come closer to the Lord. He said that he sits down and thinks about it and prays about it.

“If I were sunk into the lowest pit of Nova Scotia and all the Rocky Mountains piled on top of me, I ought not to be discouraged, but hang on, exercise faith, and keep up good courage, and I should come out on the top of the heap.”- JS

BRIGHAM YOUNG AND REBUKINGS
There is a story still carried in the family lore of Brigham Young's descendants but, so far as I know, never recorded. It says that in a meeting the Prophet rebuked Brigham Young from his head to his feet for something he had done, or something he was supposed to have done but hadn't-the detail is unclear. And it may well have been that the Prophet was deliberately putting Brigham Young to a test. When he had finished the rebuke, everyone in the room waited for the response. Brigham Young rose to his feet. He was a strong man.
Pessimist: Brigham Young’s comments could have included
: "Now, look, haven't you read that you're not supposed to rebuke in public, but only in private?" Or, "Doesn't it say something in the revelations about persuasion, and long-suffering, and gentleness and meekness?" Or, "You're dead wrong."
Optimist: In a voice everyone could tell was sincere, he said simply, "Joseph, what do you want me to do?" And the story says that the Prophet burst into tears, came down from the stand, threw his arms around Brigham, and said, in effect, “Brigham, you passed."- TGM


NEPHI WAS AN OPTIMIST
1. 1 Ne 16:17-20 Anger; Murmur; Complaining
2. 1 Ne 16:21-23 VS 22 Nephi teaches optimism
3. 1 Ne 16:24-26 Became Humble; Prayed
4. 1 Ne 16:27-31 They obtained food by faith

OVERCOMING PESSIMISM
The answer lies in our living a gospel-centered life that is full of enriching experiences that strengthen us, draw us nearer to God, and increase our optimism. Out of that optimism will emanate a contagious attitude that will positively influence not only our outlook but also that of the young people with whom we interact. President Harold B. Lee said, “You cannot lift another soul until you are standing on higher ground than he is” (Stand Ye in Holy Places [1974], 187).

Elder Boyd K. Packer, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, admonished us to study the scriptures and the words of the prophets in such instances. “True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior.” (Ensign, Nov. 1986)

The Lord rebukes faithlessness and He deplores pessimism. He expects us to believe. (Jeffrey R. Holland)

There is no place in this Church or in any of our families for pessimism or negativity. We should be incurable optimists. A person who is a pessimist has the least progress, happiness, and prosperity. (Ted E. Brewerton)

The Lords way is that the optimist with faith, who is positive, elevating, and edifying, is the individual in or out of the Church who is the most progressive, happy, and prosperous.

GORDON B. HINCKLEY
Let us not partake of the negative spirit so rife in our times. There is so much of the sweet and the decent and the beautiful to build upon. We are partakers of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The gospel means “good news!” The message of the Lord is one of hope and salvation! The voice of the Lord is a voice of glad tidings! The work of the Lord is a work of glorious accomplishment!
In a dark and troubled hour the Lord said to those He loved: “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).
These great words of confidence are a beacon to each of us. In Him we may indeed have trust. For He and His promises will never fail (from Ensign, Apr. 1986, 6).
Be positive
I am asking that we stop seeking out the storms and enjoy more fully the sunlight. I am suggesting that as we go through life we “accentuate the positive.” I am asking that we look a little deeper for the good, that we still voices of insult and sarcasm, that we more generously compliment virtue and effort. I am not asking that all criticism be silenced. Growth comes of correction. Strength comes of repentance. Wise is the man who can acknowledge mistakes pointed out by others and change his course.
What I am suggesting is that each of us turn from the negativism that so permeates our society and look for the remarkable good among those with whom we associate, that we speak of one another’s virtues more than we speak of one another’s faults, that optimism replace pessimism, that our faith exceed our fears. When I was a young man and was prone to speak critically, my father would say: “Cynics do not contribute, skeptics do not create, doubters do not achieve.

FORREST HICKMAN
Good, bad or indifferent, what you focus on, is what you can eventually become.   If you think negative, you'll become negative, if you think about depressed things, you'll become depressed... if you dwell about the ugliness that the world offers, that will have a negative effect on you too... but on the flip side, if we think of wholesome things, things that are uplifting, things that put you in a spiritual frame of mind to do good, and by surrounding yourself with good people, good things will happen for you. peace will fill your soul.
Who you hang around with will also develop the type of person you become. It's critical to surround yourself around those who share your standards, and outlook on life. you might "think" you can over look their bad habits, but eventually you will become used to it, and un-intentionally find yourself allowing it and thinking it isn't "so bad" after all... but one way or another, it WILL have a negative effect on you.
you can't stand in filth, and think you don't stink..... stay as far away from it as you can.  


QOUTES
Both optimists and pessimists contribute to our society.  The optimist invents the airplane and the pessimist the parachute.  ~Gil Stern

A pessimist sees only the dark side of the clouds, and mopes; a philosopher sees both sides, and shrugs; an optimist doesn't see the clouds at all - he's walking on them.  ~Leonard Louis Levinson

Optimist: someone who figures that taking a step backward after taking a step forward is not a disaster, it's a cha-cha.  ~Robert Brault,

Always borrow money from a pessimist; he doesn't expect to be paid back.  ~Author Unknown

OX

I don't particularly aspire to be ox-like. But when I think about it, an ox at the plow is not weak but extraordinarily strong. The key, though, is that his power is harnessed and directed.

P
PARADISE, PETER’S DENIAL, PILATE, POLITICS, PONDER, PORNOGRAPHY, PRAYER, PREPARE, PRICK, PROCASTINATION
PARADISE
(those true to gospel covenants)


NO SUCH THING AS APOSTASY
If you're on that path and pressing forward, and you die, you'll never get off the path. There is no such thing as falling off the straight and narrow path in the life to come, and the reason is that this life is the time that is given to men to prepare for eternity. (Bruce R. McConkie)

1. They are saved (Alma 40:12)
3. A state of Happiness (Alma 40:12)
4. A state of Rest (Alma 40:12)
5. A state of Peace (Alma 40:12)
6. Rest from all their troubles (Alma 40:12)
7. Rest from all care (Alma 40:12)
8. Rest from all sorrow (Alma 40:12)
9. Kept their second estate (Abraham 3:26)
10. Shall have glory added upon their heads forever and ever (Abraham 3:26)
11. There is no apostasy in paradise (Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet)

14. We shall learn many more things there; we need not suppose our five senses connect us with all the things of heaven, and earth, and eternity, and space; we need not think that we are conversant with all the elements of nature, through the medium of the senses God has given us here. Suppose He should give us a sixth sense, a seventh, an eighth, a ninth, or a fiftieth. All these different senses would convey to us new ideas, as much so as the senses of tasting, smelling, or seeing communicate different ideas from that of hearing. (JD 2:247)

I believe we shall be freed, in the next world, in a great measure, from these narrow, contracted methods of thinking. Instead of thinking in one channel, and following up one certain course of reasoning to find a certain truth, knowledge will rush in from all quarters; it will come in like the light which flows from the sun, penetrating every part, informing the spirit, and giving understanding concerning ten thousand things at the same time; and the mind will be capable of receiving and retaining all. (Journal of Discourses, 2: p.246-)

15. The spirit is inherently capable of experiencing the sensations of light; if it were not so, we could not see. You might form as fine an eye as ever was made, but if the spirit, in and of itself, were not capable of being acted upon by the rays of light; an eye would be of no benefit. Then unclothe the spirit; and instead of exposing a small portion of it about the size of a pea to the action of the rays of light, the whole of it would be exposed. I think we could then see in different directions at once, instead of looking in one particular direction, we could then look all around us at the same instant. (Journal of Discourses, 2:243)
This statement seems to me to be an extension of the doctrine taught in Doctrine and Covenants 88:67: "And if your eye be single to my glory, your whole bodies shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in you; and that body which is filled with light comprehendeth all things." – Andrew C. Skinner
16. Fully authorized and empowered to preach the gospel and minister to the women while the elders and prophets are preaching it to the men.


PETER COMMANDED TO DENY?

Not to deny his divinity but to deny his association and acquaintance. Why? To ensure Peter's safety as chief apostle and to ensure the continuity and safety of the Quorum of the Twelve.

We find interesting scriptural passages that put this episode in a different light. For example,
  1. God commanded Abraham that his wife, Sarah, should tell the Egyptians that she was Abraham's sister so that he would be protected, just as Jesus wanted the apostles protected (Abraham 2:23-25).
  2. We also remember Deity commanding Nephi to slay Laban in order to keep a whole nation safe spiritually and to bring forth God's righteous purposes (1 Nephi 4:13).
  3. “That which is wrong under one circumstance, may be, and often is, right under another. God said, "Thou shalt not kill;" at another time He said, "Thou shalt utterly destroy." This is the principle on which the government of heaven is conducted-by revelation adapted to the circumstances in which the children of the kingdom are placed. Whatever God requires is right, no matter what it is, although we may not see the reason thereof till long after the events transpire. " Joseph Smith
– Andrew C. Skinner

Story of my Mission experience of being denied.

PILATE

HAND WASHING
Matthew 27:24
“Pilate sought to refuse responsibility for deciding about Christ, but Pilate’s hands were never dirtier than just after he had washed them.” – Neil A. Maxwell

WE DO NOT KNOW
Could the Lord forgive Pilate? Certainly he could not without Pilate's repentance. Did Pilate repent? We do not know what Pilate did after the scripture drops him. He had a desire to favor the Savior. He did not display full courage in resisting the pressures of the people. Could he have saved the life of the Lord? Again, we do not know. We leave Pilate to the Lord as we do all other sinners, but remember that "to know and not to do" is sin. – Spencer W. Kimball

THE PLOUGH

"And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God." - Luke 9:62
 
"The field is the world" (Matt. 13: 38); and the Lord isolates a single man, plowing, as a photograph of every Latter-day Saint in active service, or a calling in the whole field of the world.  Every Latter-day Saint starts with his hand on the plow; the furrow is to hold the seed, (or word of God) and to produce the harvest; and the goal of the plowing is the Celestial Kingdom of God.  

THE HAND
The hand which is placed on the plow is the man's commitment, "I will follow thee, Lord" (Luke 9: 61): Instantly he becomes an engaged plowman in the service of God.  A whole world of activity opens before him; his task is to dig open the soil of the human heart and plant the seed with the Word of God.

THE FACE/BACKWARD LOOK
Looking back means that the plowman's eyes are off the plow; and therefore either that he is not plowing, or else that he is plowing anyhow - with certain disaster ahead: ground chopped by a blind plow cannot be sown.  Our Lord Himself, in this very chapter, had extraordinarily illustrated His own words.  "When the days were well nigh come that he should be received up, He steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem" (verse 51).  A single eye directing the plow, unswerving, untiring, with face set towards the furrow and the harvest - this attitude is vital for the efficient servant of God.  "I don’t know if you have ever mowed the lawn, but if you push off and then look back, you’ll discover that you have mowed in a crooked line. That’s not so bad, because you can correct it by mowing over your mistake, but if you are plowing, you’ve made a crooked furrow and that means that you have to keep making crooked furrows to match. In other words, you’ve made a total mess of the field. A person who plows has to keep his eyes straight ahead or he’ll botch the job."
It is most significant that this man, though looking back, still has his hand on the plow: it is a disciple still in the active services of Christ, and to all appearances a devoted servant of God. 

Other Parables Having to do with Appearance.
Parable of the Plough:
A man with a plough working looks like a man working with a plough looking back, at least from a distance.
Parable of the Wheat and Tares: (Matt 13:24)
Tares look like Wheat.
Parable of the 10 Virgins: (Matt 25:1)
The person with his lamp full of oil looks like another person with his lamp that has little oil.
Parable of the Fig Tree: (Matt 21:18)
And a fig tree without leaves, without fruit, looks like a fig tree that does have fruit, at least at a distance.


PERCEPTION


Once a zookeeper said to his monkeys: "You'll get 3 bananas in the Morning and 4 in the afternoon." All monkeys are upset. "OK. How about 4 bananas in Morning and 3 in the afternoon?" Hearing this, the monkeys are content. – Zhuangzi

One may perceive a thing Valuable the other Worthless: Beautiful, Ugly, Good, Bad, Expensive, Cheap

POLITICS

If you’re Oliver Cowdry and some of the saints who wanted to be Americans first and Mormons second, then you have a problem. –

PONDER


Ponder the path of thy feet. -Prov 4:26

NATHANAEL
Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. - John 1:48

“From the fragmentary account preserved in the scripture it is apparent that Nathanael had undergone some surpassing spiritual experience while praying, or meditating, or worshiping under a fig tree.” -Bruce R. McConkie

NEPHI
In 1 Nephi 11 Nephi sees a vision and is blessed with the Spirit to help interprets it vs. 1 Nephi wanted to know for himself the things his father had seen. As he PONDERED, his vision began. - lesson: we can learn things of the spirit as we ponder.
POOR

Who did the Lord have in mind when He commanded us to give to the poor and the needy? Did the Lord have only the innocent and deserving poor? If I were to only help the "deserving" poor we would be helping very few people. - Are We Special p. 67


PORNOGRAPHY

Committing the exact same sin that got us into trouble in the first place, His arms are outstretched still. - Are We Special? P. 68

“The modern thief can steal more with a computer than with a gun. Tomorrow's terrorist may be able to do more damage with a keyboard than with a bomb.”… (Even virtue…)-  National Research Council

Evidence of more crime since internet boom
Child Pornography, Identity Theft, Piracy, Credit Card Fraud, Non-Delivery of Merchandise and Overpayment Fraud.

SCRIPTURES
8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: - 1 Peter 5:8

7 And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. - Job 1:7

28 For I, the Lord God, delight in the chastity of women. And whoredoms are an abomination before me; thus saith the Lord of Hosts. - Jacob 2:28

Genesis 18 - Lot and the Townspeople of Sodom and Gomorrah: Lots house is surrounded by the townspeople who demand that lot hand over his guests so that the townspeople, as the NIV puts it bluntly, might “have sex with them.”- Victor P. Hamilton
Will you be as strong as Lot when sexual sin lies at your door? Lot kept sexual sins out of his home. He never let it in. Like Joseph of old, Lot quickly flees from his home because of the intensity of what was going on. Unlike Lot we have security systems in place to prevent sexual sins. Internet protection.

Joseph would not do this great wickedness, and sin against God, Gen. 39: 7-12. Thou shalt not commit adultery, Ex. 20: 14. Whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery in his heart, Matt. 5: 28. Neither fornicators nor adulterers shall inherit the kingdom of God, 1 Cor. 6: 9-10. God will judge whoremongers and adulterers, Heb. 13: 4. Adultery is most abominable above all sins save it be the shedding of innocent blood or denying the Holy Ghost, Alma 39: 3-5. He that committeth adultery, and repenteth not, shall be cast out, D&C 42: 23-26. If any shall commit adultery in their hearts, they shall not have the Spirit, D&C 63: 14-16.

“One of his sons Ham sees his father’s nakedness. More than likely, here it simply means that Ham sees Noah’s genitalia. Shem and Japheth, on the other hand, cover their father’s nakedness, much as God did with Adam and Eve’s in Gen 3:21”. – Victor P. Hamilton
Being naked is sacred.

QUESTIONS TO ASK THE ADDICTED
Ask the addicted, “Tell me what you mean by…”
1 - How long has this been a problem for you?
2 - When was the last time you acted out?
3 - How do you define Pornography?
4 - What types of Pornography? Child, Homosexual etc.
5 - Do you masturbate to the Pornography? How often?
6 - How many times have you unsuccessfully tried to abandon the behavior?
7 - Is the addiction kept a secret? Who else knows and how did they find out?
8 - What have you tried so far as to overcoming the addiction? What helps? What makes things worse?
9 - How old were you when you first started?
10 - How long have you gone without viewing pornography? Masturbating?
11 - What is your pattern of confession?

USEFUL WEBSITES
1 - Google.com/trends: Reflects what keywords people are searching for on a daily basis.
2 - Sanon.org: A program of recovery for those who have been affected by someone else’s sexual behavior.
3 - Enough.org: A website dedicated to sexual statistics.
4 - LDSR.org: A website with helps for Bishops.
5 - LDSAR.org: A website dedicated to recovery by writing through forums and blogs.
6 - Providentliving.org go to the Social and Emotional Strength link on the left and then choose the Addiction Recovery Program. Here you will find the A Guide to Addiction Recovery and Healing manual in PDF form, and the addiction recovery support groups meeting schedules
Helpful Books
1 - He Restoreth My Soul: Understanding and Breaking the Chemical and Spiritual Chains of Pornography Addiction Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.—Donald L. Hilton
2 - The Drug of the New Millennium: The Brain Science Behind Internet Pornography.—Mark B. Kastleman (comes with CD)
3 - Confronting Pornography: A Guide to Prevention and Recovery for Individuals, Loved Ones, and Leaders
4 - Clean Hands, Pure Heart: Overcoming Addiction to Pornography Through the Redeeming Power of Jesus Christ.—Philip A. Harrison
5 - What’s the Big Deal about Pornography? A Guide for the Internet Generation.—Jill C. Manning
6 - Heal My Broken Heart: An LDS Guide to Dealing with Those Bound by the Deadly Sin of Pornography.—Ruth Davidson and Tamara Davies.

MAJORITY RULES
Hindus don’t eat beef, so the New Delhi McDonalds serve burgers with Mutton.
This means that the majority rules!!! And each time we are accessing pornography on the computer we are voting with our clicks and our money.

A little bit of powder, a little bit of paint, makes a girl’s complexion seem what it ain’t

Once their minds were awakened to evil, Adam and Eve immediately saw their nakedness in a new light. Where moments before they had viewed their bodies with no shame, suddenly they felt so much shame that they hid from themselves, from each other, and from God. By focusing the soul on nakedness in a way that produces shame and isolation from self, from others, and from God, looking at evil destroys both freedom (the ability to know one’s self) and intimacy (the ability to share oneself with others).

CHILD PORNOGRAPHY
UTAH WAS THE HIGHEST IN THE NATION FOR CHILD PORNOGRAPHY FROM 1997 – 2000
Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation. 1997–2000. National Incident Based Reporting System. Computer file. Compiled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Department of Justice. Ann Arbor, MI: Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research

Why do you think Utah was the highest Ranking state in the Nation from 1997-2000 for Child pornography?
Utah is Rated #1 in Nation for having Household Computers

According to Newsweek, Salt Lake City, Utah, is ranked first among U.S. cities in proportion of households with personal computers (65%), partially because computers are ideal for the genealogy research.

A Deseret News poll found that in Provo, Utah, where over 85% of residents are Latter-day Saints, had even higher personal computer ownership than Salt Lake City (71% of households owned a PC). [Sources: Newsweek, 1998; Fidel, Steve. “S.L. plugged in to the Internet”, Deseret News, 18 Oct. 1999

In October 2000 the Associated Press reported that Utah ranks first in personal computer ownership, according to a U.S. Commerce Department survey: "More Utah homes have computers 66.1 percent than anywhere else in the nation." The national average was 51 percent. [Source: Utah No. 1 in home computers in Deseret News, 17 October 2000.]

If you go to www.google.com/insights/search you will find that the highest ranking search terms of the words Pornography, Pornography Addiction and Hot Sex come from Provo, Utah.

There is an “overwhelming evidence that [child pornography] is all but impossible to obtain through non-electronic means." The Internet has radically changed how child pornography is reproduced and disseminated, and, according to the United States Department of Justice, resulted in a massive increase in the "availability, accessibility, and volume of child pornography.”

“Trying to stop child pornography is like trying to stop the Niagara Falls with a spoon. That is how bad this epidemic is. I wish there was a way but we don’t have enough spoons.”- Maureen Horkan (Oprah Winfrey Show)

The number of Internet child pornography images has increased 1500% since internet 1996. The United States Department of Justice estimates that pornographers have recorded the abuse of more than one million children in the United States alone.

There were 403 child porn sites or 67 per month, for the six months of April to September 2000.
There was a 345% increase in child pornography sites from February 2001-July 2001.  There were 1,391 or 231 child porn sites per month.  This was a rate of about 8 per day
Child pornography on the Internet is becoming more and more brutal and graphic, and the number of images depicting violent abuse has risen fourfold since 2003.

PRAYER
“One of the things that we should most often pray for is what we should most often pray for.” -TGM

PREPARED

MAN WITH OIL IN HIS POCKET
On our move up here to Utah I got sick with vertigo. Pulled to the side of the road and saw another car. I approached it and asked if they were Mormons. They said yes, so I asked the man if he could give me a blessing. He said he could and pulled out of his front pocket a vial of oil. He blessed me and I felt better a couple of hours later.

PRIESTHOOD LINEAGE

“I believe the time will come when it will be necessary for every man to trace the line in which he has received the Priesthood that he exercises…Every man should be careful on this point, to know where he gets his Priesthood; that it has come to him clean and undefiled, legitimately;" (18 October 1884, Journal of Discourses 26:247) - George Q. Cannon

"If a priesthood bearer desires to trace his own line of authority, he should pursue his current office in the priesthood—not former offices. Bishops and patriarchs should trace their line of authority as high priests. In completing an authority line, each step should go back through the office held by the person at the time he performed the ordination. It is not appropriate to trace the line of authority in cases of setting apart or for other ordinances”- ." (General Handbook Supplement, Number 1, July 1, 1976)

Joseph Smith Jr., Fredrick Williams, and Sidney Rigdon ordained three witnesses
(Oliver Cowdery, Martin Harris, and David Whitmer)

The three witnesses ordained Brigham Young, an Apostle on Feb. 14 1835
Brigham Young ordained Joseph F. Smith, an Apostle on July 1st 1866
Joseph F. Smith ordained Steven L. Richards, an Apostle 1917
Steven L. Richards ordained Perry E Tingey, High Priest on Jan 6 1935
Perry E Tingey ordained Homer N Stephenson, High Priest on Feb. 27 1954
Homer N Stephenson ordained Richard A. Hickman, High Priest on Aug. 26 1969
Richard A. Hickman ordained Forrest V. Hickman, Elder on Feb. 9 1975
Forrest V. Hickman ordained Michael Andrew Hickman, Elder Dec. 29th, 1996


PROCRASTINATION
Alma 13:27

SATAN AND HIS MINIONS
“Satan and his minions gathered themselves together to strategize how to defeat the Saints. They were greatly concerned about the progress of the kingdom of God. One of his demons suggested, “I’ll go down and just tell them that none of its true.”
Satan replied, “That will never work. These Latter-day saints are too faithful for that bold lie.”
Another proposed, “I’ll just tell them that it’s only half true to confuse them.”
Satan replied, “That will never work. Latter-day saints study the Gospel and know what they believe.”
There was understandable frustration in the realms of darkness until one little demon piped up. “I know- I’ll tell them it’s all true…there’s just no hurry.”- Amen

Prophets
  1. Testify of the divinity of the Savior;
  2. Warn
  3. Predict

“Any person who receives revelation is a prophet and can, as occasion requires and when guided by the Spirit, "prophesy of all things." Bruce R. McConkie

ALL ARE PROPHETS IN THEIR OWN SPHERE
All faithful Latter-day Saints may be prophets in their own spheres. In a sense, the word prophet might apply to all faithful Church members. I do not mean that we have the right to receive revelations as to how this church might be run, or that members may have revelations as to how or who should be named in a stake or ward organization. But I do say that the bishop in his place, the mission president in his place, the stake president in his place, the quorum president, the auxiliary leader, the seminary teacher, the institute teacher, a father and mother in the home, a young person in his or her quest for a proper companion in marriage-each of us has the right to revelation.     
No groups of people have a gift so widely diffused as the gift of prophecy.

"The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy" (Revelation 19:10).
"No man can know that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost" (1 Corinthians 12:3).
   
In other words, anyone who enjoys the gift by which he may have God revealed has the spirit of prophecy, the power of revelation, and, in a sense, is a prophet within the sphere of responsibility and authority given to him. This is a nation of prophets. Every person who has the Holy Ghost has a right to prophecy, the gift of prophecy, within the sphere which is designated and outlined by the imposition of hands for each calling for which the individual is called. - The Teachings of Harold B. Lee


Q
QUESTIONS,
QUESTIONS

WHY GOD QUESTIONS US
Such questions are frequently used by God, allowing his children the freedom and opportunity to express themselves as revealingly as they wish, even though God knows the answer to his own and all other questions. – Jeffrey R. Holland

Where art thou? Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? What is this that thou hast done? - Gen 3:9-13, Moses 4:15 -19

Brother of Jared sees God: “Why hast thou fallen? Sawest thou more than this? Believest thou the words which I shall speak?” Ether 3:7-11


R
RAINBOW, RATED R, REMEMBER,
THE RAINBOW

The phenomenon of the rainbow is the result of sunlight passing through raindrops. Each droplet acts as a prism to bend the light and thereby produces one of the colors of the rainbow. The amount of refraction or bending of the light determines the color which is reflected to the observer. Raindrops at different levels will receive light at different angles and therefore bend the light at varying degrees which accounts for the various colors appearing in the rainbow. All of the colors of the solar spectrum may be seen, and they always appear in this order: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet.
Probably the Lord selected this impressive phenomenon of nature which is usually associated with the end of a rainstorm as an appropriate ‘token’ for the new covenant between himself and Noah. It does not appear that the sign of the rainbow was new, but its use as a token between God and Noah was new.

RATED R MOVIES.

I’m not surprised that President Benson would tell all of us as members of the church that were not to go, of course never to an X movie nor to an R movie. And yet there are many who are still going to R movies. I guess they’ve not really believed yet, the President of the Church. That’s risky business in my mind. – Gene R. Cook

WHAT IS AN R-RATED MOVIE?
An R-rated motion picture, in the view of the Rating Board, contains some adult material. An R-rated motion picture may include adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually-oriented nudity, drug abuse or other elements, so that parents are counseled to take this rating very seriously. Children under 17 are not allowed to attend R-rated motion pictures unaccompanied by a parent or adult guardian. Parents are strongly urged to find out more about R-rated motion pictures in determining their suitability for their children. Generally, it is not appropriate for parents to bring their young children with them to R-rated motion pictures. –mpaa.org

EXCUSES MADE BY LATTER-DAY SAINTS
1 - It’s a documentary.
2 - I can still go to the temple after seeing an R-Rated movie.
3 - If the Book of Mormon was made into video it would be worse than an R-Rated film.
4 - There is no sex in it. Only violence. It is Historical War.
5 - The council President Benson gave to not watch rated R movies was given to a group of youth and that the talk was not meant for some sort of new pseudo-Church policy but rather, for the youth of the Church specifically.

6 - A movie that is rated R in the United States is rated pg-13 in Canada. (United states is the only one using the MPAA rating system.) If a Church leader addressing a General Conference said, “Don’t watch R-rated movies,” it would mean absolutely nothing to most members living outside the United States.
7 - I do not do it on a regular basis. Only on extremely rare occasions.
8 - Almost all references to not watching rated-R movies are not from prophets and apostles.
9 - This R-Rated film has spiritually impacted me for the better.
10- Our BYU professor allowed the students to watch a historical movie rated-R
11- No official church statements have been made about R-rated films. (therefore not doctrine of the church)
12- No council has been given to the local leaders of the church to speak out against R-Rated movies.

WHAT DO THE PROPHETS HAVE TO SAY?
For the Strength of Youth Pamphlet states:
"Our Heavenly Father has counseled us as Latter-day Saints to seek after "anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy" (Articles of Faith 1:13). Whatever you read, listen to, or watch makes an impression on you. Public entertainment and the media can provide you with much positive experience. They can uplift and inspire you, teach you good and moral principles, and bring you closer to the beauty this world offers. But they can also make what is wrong and evil look normal, exciting, and acceptable.
Don't attend or participate in any form of entertainment, including concerts, movies, and videocassettes, that is vulgar, immoral, inappropriate, suggestive, or pornographic in any way. Movie ratings not always accurately reflect offensive content. Don't be afraid to walk out of a movie, turn off a television set, or change a radio station if what’s being presented does not meet your Heavenly Father's standards. And do not read books or magazines or look at pictures that are pornographic or that present immorality as acceptable. In short, if you have any question about whether a particular movie, book, or other form of entertainment is appropriate, don't see it, don't read it, don't participate."

President Gordon B. Hinckley taught:
"Be clean. I cannot emphasize that enough. Be clean. It is very, very important and you at your age are in such temptation all the time. It is thrown at you on television. It is thrown at you in books and magazines and videos. You do not have to rent them. Don't do it. Just don't do it. Don't look at them. If somebody proposes that you sit around all night watching some of that sleazy stuff, you say, (It¹s not for me. Stay away from it." (Denver Colorado, youth meeting, 14 Apr. 1996, Quote by Elder Joe J. Christensen, Ensign Nov. 1996, p. 40)

President Ezra Taft Benson taught:
"We counsel you, young men, not to pollute your minds with such degrading matter, for the mind through which this filth passes is never the same afterwards. Don't see R-rated movies or vulgar videos or participate in any entertainment that is immoral, suggestive, or pornographic. Don't listen to music that is degrading." (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson, p.222)
Consider carefully the words of the prophet Alma to his errant son, Corianton, Forsake your sins, and go no more after the lusts of your eyes. (Alma 39:9) The lusts of your eyes. In our day, what does that expression mean? Movies, television programs and video recordings that are both suggestive and lewd....We counsel you young men [and women] not to pollute your minds with such degrading matter, for the mind through which this filth passes is never the same afterwards. Don't see R-rated movies or vulgar videos or participate in any entertainment that is immoral, suggestive or pornographic. Watch those shows and entertainment that lift the spirit and promote clean thoughts and actions. (Ensign May 1986, p. 45)

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin taught:
"[Our Heavenly Father] has, through prophets, cautioned against consuming the steady diet of evil that is offered relentlessly in today¹s media, especially magazines, movies, videocassettes, video games, and television. The windows of computer monitors and television screens can bring to us very useful information, but they can also bring information that is evil, degrading, and destructive. The Lord has warned repeatedly against the evils and designs of conspiring men in our day who would enslave us to our appetites and passions by tempting and tantalizing us with the obscene images, words and music. Through his servants, the Lord has cautioned us strongly not to take into our minds thoughts that can harm our spirits. Since 1950, Church leaders speaking in general conference have counseled us some seventy-five times against unhealthy media consumption. In recent years, as standards of public decency and morality have declined and as public media have reflected and often led that decline, these words of loving concern from inspires shepherds of the Lord¹s flock have come with more frequency and greater urgency. The watchmen on the tower have raised a warning voice." (Ensign Nov. 1995, p.77)

Elder James E. Faust taught:
"Parental hypocrisy can make children cynical and unbelieving of what they are taught at home. For instance, when parents attend movies they forbid their children to see, parental credibility is diminished. If children are expected to be honest, parents must be honest. If children are expected to be virtuous, parents must be virtuous. If you expect your children to be honorable, you must be honorable." (Ensign Nov. 1990, p. 33)

Elder J. Richard Clarke taught:
"Any film, television show, music, or printed material unfit for youth is also unfit for parents.  Those who rationalize acceptance of immoral material on grounds of maturity or sophistication are deceived." (Ensign May 1991, p. 42)

Elder H. Burke Peterson taught:
"I know it is hard counsel we give when we say movies that are R-rated, and many with PG-13 ratings, are produced by satanic influences. Our standards should not be dictated by the rating system. I repeat, because of what they really represent, these types of movies, music, tapes, etc. serve the purposes of the author of all darkness." (Ensign Nov. 1993, p.43)

Elder Joe J. Christensen taught:
"It is very unreasonable to suppose that exposure to profanity, nudity, sex, and violence has no negative effects on us.  We can't roll around in the mud without getting dirty.  It is a concern that some of our young Latter-day Saints, as well as their parents, regularly watch R-rated and other inappropriate movies and videos.  One more reason why the devil laugheth, and his angels rejoice.(3 Ne. 9:2)'' (October 1996 General Conference, see The Savior Is Counting On You)
"Although there are some uplifting exceptions, in most areas of the mass media there seems to be a declaration of war against almost everything the majority treasures most: the family, religion and patriotism. Marriage is degraded, while premarital and extramarital relations are encouraged and glamorized. Profanity and the foulest of vulgar gutter language bombard the ears of all who listen. Reportedly, in one R-rated movie, the most common, vulgar, four-letter word was spoken 256 times! Human life itself is trivialized by the constant barrage of violence and killings. Remember that anything that is not good for children is rarely good for adults." (Ensign Nov. 1993, p.11)

WHO RATES THE MOVIES WE WATCH?
Parents Rate the Movies
The ratings are decided by a full-time Rating Board located in Los Angeles. There are 10-13 members of the Board who serve for periods of varying length. They work for the Classification and Rating Administration, which is funded by fees charged to producers/distributors for the rating of their films. There are no special qualifications for Board membership, except that the members must have a shared parenthood experience, must be possessed of an intelligent maturity, and most of all, have the capacity to put themselves in the role of most American parents so they can view a film and apply a rating that most parents would find suitable and helpful in aiding their decisions about their children and what movies they see.
The Board Votes on Ratings
The Board views each film. Each member estimates what most parents would consider to be that film and appropriate rating. After group discussion, the Board votes on the rating. Each member completes a rating form spelling out his or her reason for the rating. The rating is then decided by majority vote.
Ratings Appraisal
If a film is assigned a rating that a producer/director does not want, he or she may edit and re-submit the film for another rating.

REMEMBER

“To have in the mind an idea which had been in the mind before, and which recurs to the mind without effort.” Dictionary

  1. “Remember the Sabbath Day, to keep it holy.” Ex. 20:8
  2. “That [we] may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son.” D&C 20:77
  3. “That [we] may do it in remembrance of the blood of thy Son.” D&C 20:79
  4. “Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly.” - D&C 121:45

HELAMAN REALLY WANTED HIS SONS TO REMEMBER
6 Behold, my sons, I desire that ye should remember to keep the commandments of God; Behold, I have given unto you the names of our first parents who came out of the land of Jerusalem; and this I have done that when you remember your names ye may remember them; and when ye remember them ye may remember their works; and when ye remember their works ye may know how that it is said, and also written, that they were good.
9 O remember, remember, my sons, the words which king Benjamin spake unto his people; yea, remember that there is no other way nor means whereby man can be saved, only through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ, who shall come; yea, remember that he cometh to redeem the world.
10 And remember also the words which Amulek spake unto Zeezrom, in the city of Ammonihah; for he said unto him that the Lord surely should come to redeem his people, but that he should not come to redeem them in their sins, but to redeem them from their sins.
12 And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation;
14 And they did remember his words; and therefore they went forth, keeping the commandments of God

IF YOU REMEMBER YOU WON'T FORGET
“If you remember,” he said, “you won’t forget to pray. You won’t forget to serve or love. You will remember to read the scriptures. You will not forget your family and friends. You will remember to obey the prophet. You’ll keep in your heart the knowledge that Jesus Christ sacrificed his life for us, and you will love him as he loves you. You will remember why you came to this earth. And you will remember you are sons and daughters of God. You can return home to him if you remember to keep his commandments and live your lives the way he has asked.”

SIN


We mistakenly order sins into different categories of severity and too easily forget that the least degree of sin keeps us from God's presence unless we repent. - Are We Special? P. 72

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BYU Carpet Cleaner

I carpet clean the Mission Training Center and love the gospel of Jesus Christ. These posts contain my experiences, thoughts and opinions on spiritual things.

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