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Monday, April 30, 2012

48: THE FINAL "BEAM" of DEFIANCE

APRIL 30, 2012: THE FINAL BEAM of DEFIANCE
Dedication verses Defiance

Dedication: The act of consecrating to a divine Being… The act of devoting or giving to another.
Defiance: The act of bold resistance to a Higher authority or power, despite warnings of destruction.


THEN and NOW:
April 30, 1789....
On the left is photo of the statue of George Washington kneeling in prayer at the St. Paul’s chapel in Lower Manhattan, New York City located at ground zero. 

April 30, 2012
On the right is the photo of the “final” beams being erected today on the Freedom Tower. This tower can now claim the title of New York City's tallest skyscraper as of today. More stories will continue to be built, but today marks the day the building exceeded the height of all other buildings in the U.S.

Some quick thoughts.. I would like to go into more detail, but wanted to post on this today.  

Dates are important. The two most important dates in our life is the day we are born and the day we get married. Our Birthday and our Wedding Day.  Both signify new life. When we get married we dedicate our life to someone else. We make a covenant. We dedicate and are sealed to one another. When we break sacred covenants, the results are tragic, painful  and sorrowful. If we humbling ask for forgiveness, we can receive mercy, but only if we choose to repent and turn back. However, if we don’t repent but actually become proud and defiant…  we seal our fate despite the many warnings of tragic outcome and that destruction will soon follow.

Many do not know that two promised lands in this world have been dedicated to God. Israel and the United States. This dedication is a marriage between the people living on the promised land with their God. The Lord God is the husband, and we as a people are His bride. If the people on the dedicated/promised land want the protection of God, they keep his commandments and honor Him.

Here are a few important things that I learned.

George Washington dedicated the United States of America to God on April 30, 1789. He dedicated this land both in his inaugural address at the Federal Hall and then in prayer, at St Paul's Chapel located on the corner of a place now known as “ground zero”. Washington stated in an address at Federal Hall that the nation would prosper and be protected as long as it remained committed to the will and purposes of God.  

King Solomon dedicated the Jewish Temple and the Mount in Jerusalem to God. When the Israelite people consistently departed from His decrees and laws, judgment would come by the Lord. God's first warning is to allow the national hedge of security to be broken and then if the people do not repent gradually more severe consequences are imposed.

There is a pattern:

Ancient Israel had wandered from God and were living according to their own ways, worshipping idols and doing as they pleased. God allowed their enemies to attack Jerusalem, the national capital. In arrogant defiance, the ancient Israelis refused to see the attack as a warning from God but boldly stated that they would rebuild.

9/11 was a warning to this nation but our leaders and our people did not take it or see it as a warning. We have bolding declared that we would rebuild. We are and today have rebuilt higher and taller than before.

Some of you might have read the book The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn. It goes into more detail these details and spefically about the ancient prophesy found in Isaiah 9:10-11.  I would suggest reading it since it contain more important facts and insight than I can write in this email.


Sidenote:

In defiance, our national leaders - not once but three times - quoted the words of an ancient prophecy from the capital of the nation. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle from the floor of the U.S. Senate the day after 9-11; Senator John Edwards from Washington D.C. on the anniversary of 9-11 in 2004 during his campaign for the Vice-Presidency and President Barack Obama in his first speech to Congress. All three spoke words from Isaiah 9:10 - "The bricks have fallen, but we will build with dressed stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will put cedars in their place." Daschle and Edwards read the verse verbatim - word for word. Edwards entire speech was built around the scripture passage. Obama stated that "we will rebuild" in his speech.


How tragic to be defiant on the same day or anniversary of the day a covenant and dedication is made.
What would you call the bride who is unfaithful to her groom and breaks her marriage vow on the same day or anniversary as her wedding?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

47: DRESS REHEARSALS OFJST MATTHEW 24



"Be not troubled, for all I have told you must come to pass."

Joseph Smith Matthew 1:23


All things are in commotion worldwide. If we repent as a people we get more time, however, time is accelerating and there is a great importance of not procrastinating the day of repentance... otherwise, the prophecies of calamities will become inevitable. There will come a day when the spirit will withdraw, and the earth will move into darkness. Destructions will happen. There will be a sharp contrast between the light gathering and the tares slipping into darkness. Most people don't realize that the signs of the last days will go unnoticed, since they will seem natural and normal. It is not going to be abrupt to happen over night. It will be gradual but definite.
 

I thought this video was interesting. It is long and I really didn't care for the background  music. No need to add to the eery feeling, just let the footage speak for itself. (BTW It is possible that some of the footnote has been alterated.. but even if 10% of what is shown it true, than it is indeed very interesting. ) 

You will see in the video that just in the first few days of 2012 the following happened.
  • Birds falling dead on New Years Eve on the second year in row
  • Earthquakes in Japan
  • Earthquakes in Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Thousands of dead fish washed ashore in Norway
  • Devasting Fires in Chile, Australia.
  • Mt. Etna erupting
  • 90% of White tail deer population died in a 100 mile radius in Montana. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

46: DIVIDED INTO CLASSES and BUILDING TO GET GAIN

I think one of the most beautiful, but also tragic accounts in The Book of Mormon is found in Fourth Nephi. It covers many generations in just a few verses. It covers both ends of the spectrum from a righteous generation to a wicked generation, from a Zion society to Babylon. It is the history how a people and their posterity who saw and were ministered to by the Lord became corrupt and eventually were destroyed. One of the first signs of decay was pride, the wearing of costly apparel, being divided into classes, and building up to get gain.

 "And now, in this two hundred and first year there began to be among them those who were lifted up in pride, such as the wearing of costly apparel, and all manner of fine pearls, and of the fine things of the world. And from that time forth they did have their goods and their substance no more common among them. And they began to be divided into classes; and they began to build up churches unto themselves to get gain, and began to deny the true church of Christ."

Their downfall...they began to be divided into classes and built to get gain.

Now for some "real-time" symbolism.
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Above is a photo of the Marriott Center at BYU. Not only does this venue provide a place for athletic events, but it also converts into a religious center for Devotionals, General Priesthood Sessions and Graduation Ceremonies.

It was announced last Friday that this building will now undergo renovations. A select number of padded courtside seats will be built where the current student section is. Unfortunately now for the BYU students, they will longer be able to watch the athletic events courtside but will now have to sit behind the baskets.  As reported in the KSL news article, the new premiere seats will be sold for the purpose of making more money. These new padded seats will more than likely be reserved for distinguished guests at other functions as well. It seems to be a division of classes. The purpose is to make money.

Quoting from the KSL article:

"There are many reasons why this decision was made. Some of it was financial and some of it was strategy. Financially, BYU will be able to make more money off of blue padded seats that will replace the north side benches. Strategically, having the students behind the west basket will put them by the visiting team's bench and behind the visiting team's basket in the second half."

"As you can imagine, not all of the students are thrilled about losing a pretty primo seat to watch a BYU basketball game. I completely understand where the students are coming from. They have been sitting center court forever and look at a move to the end zones as a demotion. To me it's not a demotion, its smart business."

"However, by doing this it will allow BYU to take advantage of some financial opportunities"

here is the link:
http://www.ksl.com/?sid=20071349&nid=294&title=shep-talk-marriott-center-movement-and-nfl-dominance&s_cid=queue-4

Saturday, April 21, 2012

45: PROPHET: A SACRED NAME AND TITLE GIVEN TO A MAN

photograph taken of stainglass window at the Church History Museum taken on April 6, 2012

History reveals that the Lord usually will chose a hesitant leader versus an eager leader. Prophets don't like the spotlight. They usually run from it, because they know on whom the spotlight should shine.  Prophets speak little about themselves. They usually only do two things... preach repentance and testify of Christ. In their spare time, they might fight/warn against the influences of Babylon, and they hope for the establishment of Zion.

One of the more well known prophets in scripture is Moses. He was reluctant to be God's messenger. In scripture, there no "odes" to the Moses. Some say this is so that we see the Exodus as the work of the Almightly and to avoid following or pseudo-worshipping of Moses as a god. Others say it is so we don't come to believe that we can only accomplish what the Lords asks when there is a strong leader.

The title of "prophet" is a sacred name and a calling given to a man. It expresses the personal relationship between a man and God. They talk with one another.. face to face. The idea that the title of prophet is either assumed or the title given to a man merely because of a rank and/or status is offensive to God.

A prophet speaks for and in behalf of the Lord to have us turn back to God (repent) and to testify of the reality of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. A prophet would never use words like.." I believe the Lord would have me say this"... for a prophet would KNOW that the Lord would have him speak those words. A prophet is commanded to speak those words, otherwise he would be held accountable. A prophet would not need to quote another man, but only the words the Lord puts in his mouth. However, many times a prophet will quote another prophets words.. like the words of Isaiah.

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Sidenote:

The Book of Mormon in Enos talks about "And there were exceedingly many prophets among us. I wonder how many is considered EXCEEDINGLY MANY... Obviously it is not just one...Is fifteen considered exceedingly many?

In Numbers 11:29 states.. "would God that all the Lord’s people were prophets, and that the Lord would put his spirit upon them!" 

But wait..isn't there a cap on the number of prophets on the earth?  Did the Lord really mean ALL the Lord's people could be prophets? Wouldn't this cause chaos?

Another interesting to note in the Book of Enos is what manner these exceedingly many prophets spoke: "And there was nothing save it was exceeding harshness, preaching and prophesying of wars, and contentions, and destructions, and continually reminding them of death, and the duration of eternity, and the judgments and the power of God, and all these things—stirring them up continually to keep them in the fear of the Lord."

No wonder people reject and stone the prophets. They prefer to hear warm and fuzzy pleasantries that make them feel like all is well.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

44: DAMAGE BY FIRE AND WATER


Above is a photo of the cleanup underway of the fire and water damage in the LDS Conference Center. The main area that received the most damage is the area around the pulpit. It was reported on KSL news that the estimated damage is $500,000.  The fire started in the control room above the pulpit that also provides back up power for the building. Once this area caught on fire, two sprinklers right over the pulpit went off pouring hundreds of gallons of water down on the pulpit causing much water damage.
http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=20063526&title=lds-conference-center-fire-caused-500k-in-damage&s_cid=featured-2


It is always our hope and faith that once we dedicate our buildings, we will receive protection from such things. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

43: In addition to dedicating Banks.. we now dedicate Law Offices

We no longer just dedicate places of worship like our temples and churches, but we have our prophets, seers, and revelators dedicating banks, and law offices. It was reported in the Deseret News last week when one of the senior Apostles dedicated Utah’s biggest Law Firm. Below is a photo of the newly constructed building of the Law Office of Kirton McConkie taken at Christmastime. It is one of the new buildings located in the Church’s multibillion dollar investment of the City Creek Center. It is directly across from the Church Administration Office building for the First Presidency.  It might be just me, but it almost feels like an extension of the Temple Square with all of the beautiful lights.

On the church’s website explains the following about dedication of Buildings.

Whenever The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints constructs a new building, there is a dedication ceremony held when the building is finished. The purpose of this ceremony is to set aside the building for the work of God. A Latter-day Saint dedication ceremony includes a special prayer designating the building for Church use and asking God to bless the structure and grounds. A dedication ceremony generally also includes music and talks from Church leaders. Attendance at the event is usually by invitation only and the length varies depending on the type of building being dedicated.

Mormon buildings that are dedicated include temples and meetinghouses, as well as places set aside for educational purposes, such as institutes, seminaries and buildings at Church-owned universities. Temples are always dedicated by a general authority, whereas a meetinghouse may be dedicated by a local Church leader. After a temple is dedicated, only Mormons in good standing may enter, but all other Church buildings are open to the public after they are dedicated.

As reported in the Deseret News:

The Kirton McConkie Building, located at 50 E. South Temple, was dedicated by Elder Dallin H. Oaks on April 12. Elder Oaks, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Quorum of the Twelve, officially welcomed Kirton McConkie to City Creek Center and offered a dedicatory prayer on the firm's new building at 50 E. South Temple.

Elder Dallin H Oaks said, "Lawyers and the legal profession have served humanity ably, responsibly and effectively throughout our lifetimes and for many generations before us. The continuation of that service, which is essential to the children of God and the work of the Lord, depends on the conscientious performances of lawyers like you and law firms like Kirton McConkie," he said.

During the dedication ceremony, Elder Lance B.Wickman, emeritus general authority and general counsel for the LDS Church, praised Kirton McConkie for the work it has done for the church for nearly 17 years. "It's not really the building we're dedicating," ElderWickman said. "It's really us, in our devotion, in our service, giving the best that we have to give in our professional capacity, realizing that in doing so we are not just representing another client, but we are representing the church of Jesus Christ himself."


So, If  I read this correctly. The purpose of a dedicatory ceremony is to set aside a building for the work of God. Elder Oaks dedicated a Law Office which he stated is essential to the children of God and the work of the Lord.  Elder Wickman states that the lawyers are not just representing another client, but they are representing the church of Jesus Christ, HIMSELF?

Side note:

I have been reading III Nephi lately. There  are some interesting history that is recorded about what happens just prior to all of the destructions prior to  the Lord appearing to the People.

“even almost all the lawyers and the high priests, did gather themselves together, and unite with the kindreds of those judges who were to be tried according to the law.” III Nephi 6:27

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

42: Joseph Smith, the American Indians and the Book of Mormon:

Here are some paintings that I think are important. The first photo is of an 1890 oil painting of Joseph Smith preaching to the Indians. The painting was commissioned for the Salt Lake Temple and it hung there for over fifty years. It no longer hangs in the temple. The painting likely depicts the August 12, 1841 visit of Joseph Smith with more than one hundred chiefs and braves of the Sac and Fox Indians and their families. During the meeting in the grove near the Nauvoo temple the Prophet explained the Book of Mormon. He told them of the special religious commitment the Latter-day Saints have to Native Americas.


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The next painting depicts Elder Orson Pratt with more Native Americans. It depicts when Orson obtained written permission to stay the winter on the lands of the Otoe and Omaha Indian nations. Hosea Stout recorded that Elder Pratt told them that “our great chief (Joseph Smith) found a book that was about their people. He explained that the Saints were driven and persecuted because they believed in this book. The Indians “listened with breathless silence.”



From the introduction to the Book of Mormon we read:

“The book was written by many ancient prophets by the spirit of prophecy and revelation. Their words, written on gold plates, were quoted and abridged by a prophet-historian named Mormon. The record gives an account of two great civilizations. One came from Jerusalem in 600 B.C., and afterward separated into two nations, known as the Nephites and the Lamanites. The other came much earlier when the Lord confounded the tongues at the Tower of Babel. This group is known as the Jaredites. After thousands of years, all were destroyed except the Lamanites, and they are among the ancestors of the American Indians.”

I wonder if we have lost touch with one of the main reasons why the Book of Mormon was written. Mormon states on the Title Page to the Book of Mormon that the purpose of the Book of Mormon is  “is to show unto the remnant of the house of Israel what great things the Lord hath done for their fathers.”

Not sure we have really accomplished this mission to show the remnant (those that are among the ancestors of  American Indians) what great things the Lord hath done for their fathers. Instead it seems like we have put a lot of resources and money into other things.  

Isa. 28: 1-3
“Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading flower, which are on the head of the fat valleys of them that are overcome with wine! ..The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, shall be trodden under feet.”


Thursday, April 5, 2012

41: PREPARING FOR PASSOVER/EASTER WEEKEND

 
"Passover was meant to be a Holy Celebration, and NO work was to be done. True Rest in the Lord is only found by ceasing from our own "Works" and resting in the Delivering Redeeming Power of the Lamb of God. God said that there is Healing Power in the Passover Lamb and that the Passover delivers all those who are the Firstborn. We should know by now that all healing occurs because of the Light of Christ. Paul said that those who Come unto Christ are the Firstborn of God, who are delivered from the law of sin and death, AND of dead "works". "

During the week preceding Passover, Israelites are to look for and clean their house (Heart) of any Leaven (Sin). By so doing, we allow the Spirit to show us whats in our Heart that is keeping us from Christ, and with a Contrite Spirit we could then give ourselves completely to Him. This is what is meant by"Bringing the Lamb into the House", or bringing the Lamb of God into our hearts.

Monday, April 2, 2012

40: YEARNING FOR ZION

Today is the day after General Conference. This was the first time I did not fall asleep and actually listened to every word. I think my motivation to listen to every talk was more out of curiousity than anything. :) I am not sure I will make any comments about what was said in conference, but in the meantime, I wanted to share some words about Zion that I recieved from a friend of mine. (BTW: this is the 40th post on this blog. The number 40 is significant. It was 40 years that the Israelites wandered in the wilderness. Yesterday marked a new month. It was a new day for me. Hopefully all of you will enjoy the week with Passover/Easter. It is important, and significant.

"One clear lesson from our history is that the very moment we as a people rejected Zion during the Missouri period, we have been slaves in Babylon ever since. Zion and Babylon cannot and do not coexist. They are mutually exclusive and inexorably separate. We have taken on every habit of Babylon and made them our own.

Because every dime we earn comes from Babylon, it’s already polluted when we receive it, so how could God ever want, or need our filthy lucre to build a Zion society? If our hearts were truly attuned to Zion, God would provide all that we need (manna and more) to establish Zion, without any of Babylon’s impurities. We cannot expect to use Babylonian institutions or instruments of any kind in the establishment of a true Zion. It must come by faith, and by the results of miracles which follow our faith. Anything less is corrupted and co-opted by Babylon, and Zion cannot be established on the principles of Babylon. As Zion is God’s abode, then He would provide everything to build Zion, as God surely would not abide a Babylonian built city, or altar, or Throne.

So far as we are aware, there has only been one successfully established Zion society in the history of this world which did not eventually succumb to Babylon. So how did they do it? Somehow I doubt that Enoch’s people established banks to loan money for usury to build Zion. Nor did they start businesses to acquire stock, or to sell their businesses for fabulous profits to initiate a Zion. Enoch did not exchange gold for goods, nor did he barter in real-estate. They did not acquire wealth on the backs of the laboring poor either, as that would be an offense to God. So where did they get the means to build God’s City? Enoch must have awakened to these greater principles, and the resultant miracles built the City.

Somehow, if we can get our minds and hearts wrapped around the idea that EVERYTHING we know and experience in this world is Babylon, then perhaps we can begin to reorient our eyes towards God with an intention and hope to establish Zion. It cannot come from a corrupt institution, a failed priesthood, or from our corrupted hearts. We must extricate ourselves from every idea associated with Babylon in our hopes to build Zion. Then perhaps God will open the door to Zion! Until that time comes and until that people arise, we will still be found rejecting Zion."