The Coming Apostasy of Latter-day Conservatives

PLEASE SEE ADDENDUM AT THE END OF THIS ARTICLE

Throughout time the Lord has caused Gospel principles to be discontinued when the general body of the Church rejects these teachings.  A similar fate may soon occur to the principles of agency and freedom…

Latter-day Saints, in general, appear to be rejecting the principles of agency and freedom.  This rejection may slowly be causing a change in the official position of the church – similar to what happened during the time of Samuel in ancient Israel.  If this change continues to the point where the Church officially rejects the principles of liberty, those who continue to defend these principles could be at risk of a similar fate as those who continued to defend other principles that are no longer the official position of the Church – complete apostasy and excommunication.   While there is still time, we, as LDS liberty-lovers, must continue to labor in advancing the cause of liberty so this day of apostasy never is realized.

Over the years I have heard many times the murmuring comments, “Why don’t the Brethren speak as much about the Constitution as they used to?”, “Why aren’t the Brethren as bold as they once were on the principles of freedom?” or some variety of the same intent. I have always felt that this was basically just whining from people that thought they could deliver the message better than the servant of the Lord and basically nonsense.

This complaint is not new, has been around for at least 43 years, and our Church leaders have dismissed it as a lie from Satan.

“‘We really haven’t received much instruction about freedom,’ the devil says. This is a lie, for we have been warned time and again…”  (Ezra Taft Benson, “Not Commanded in All Things“, General Conference, April 1965)

We continue to this day to be warned regarding our duty to preserve freedom and the US Constitution.  In February of 2006, an Ensign article written by a General Authority of the Church taught us “What a sacred privilege and responsibility is ours to participate with other like-minded people to ensure that basic freedoms are preserved wherever we reside.” (Shirley D. Christensen, “‘I, the Lord God, Make You Free’,” Ensign, Feb 2006)

The admonition to defend freedom did not stop there as we can see from this video produced in December of 2007 called, “Why is it important for Church members to participate in the political process?” In the video, Elder Ballard says, “The very fundamental principle of freedom is absolutely essential for the Gospel of Jesus Christ to prosper… (T)hat principle of sustaining the Constitution… is a very, very important principle and  has been taught since the very beginning in the history of our Church.”

And finally this year (2008), in the October General Conference, President Boyd K. Packer teaches us the vital lesson that the Lord “established the Constitution of this land”.

That is three years, three consecutive years of Apostles and General Authorities of the Church speaking boldly regarding the Heavenly nature of the Constitution and our duty to uphold it!  President Benson is right, it is a lie from Lucifer himself to say that we have not received much instruction about freedom.

That being said, this author believes if the Elders of Israel do not repent and act now, teaching those statements of the General Authorities above in the future will be tantamount to apostasy. Sound crazy?  Let me explain.

In a talk helping members of the Church to gain a greater understanding of Church Welfare services, President Marion G. Romney started out teaching the principle of agency. President Romney stated that, “Agency, (n)ext to life itself, it is man’s most precious inheritance”  President Romney then relates the two subjects together and says, “I suggest we consider what has happened to our agency with respect to contributing to the means used by the bureaucracy in administering government welfare services.”

After explaining how the Church welfare program protects agency, he quotes President Clark who explains how the destruction of agency and the family are the end result of Satan’s fraud, “You must remember that back and behind this whole propaganda of ‘pensions’, gratuities, and doles to which we are now being subjected, is the idea of setting up in America, a socialistic or communistic state, in which the family would disappear, religion would be prescribed and controlled by the state, and we should all become mere creatures of the state, ruled over by ambitious and designing men.” (General Conference April 1976)

In a General Conference talk given by then Elder Howard W. Hunter, linking the dangers to our agency to the dole, he said “We are to be free from dependence upon a dole or any program that might endanger our free agency.” (General Conference October 1975)

He gave an explanation of this by saying, “Personal unrighteousness can lead toward a welfare state. What is the real cause of this trend toward the welfare state, toward more socialism? In the last analysis, in my judgment, it is personal unrighteousness. When people do not use their freedoms responsibly and righteously, they will gradually lose these freedoms.  If man will not recognize the inequalities around him and voluntarily, through the gospel plan, come to the aid of his brother, he will find that through “a democratic process” he will be forced to come to the aid of his brother. The government will take from the “haves” and give to the “have nots.” Both have lost their freedom. Those who “have,” lost their freedom to give voluntarily of their own free will and in the way they desire. Those who “have not,” lost their freedom because they did not earn what they received. They got “something for nothing,” and they will neither appreciate the gift nor the giver of the gift.  Under this climate, people gradually become blind to what has happened and to the vital freedoms which they have lost.”  (“The Law of the Harvest“, Elder Howard W. Hunter. BYU Devotional. March 8, 1966.)

Compulsion and slavery are Satan’s alternative to the Savior’s program of agency and independence and the Brethren have stated that government welfare affects our agency. Just as Satan set up his imitation of agency, the Brethren have also stated Satan set up his imitation for caring for the poor.

In addition to the above statements condemning government welfare, Social Security was also specifically condemned by at least one Prophet in General Conference:

“I have had some of the most insulting letters that ever came to me, condemning me for not being in favor of the Townsend Plan (original name of Social Security), and that I must be ignorant of the plan. I am not ignorant of the plan… it is in direct opposition to everything I have quoted from Brigham Young and from the revelations of the Lord.” (Heber J. Grant, General Conference, Oct 1936)

With the Brethren pointing out the fact that the counterfeit the world has set up to care for the poor and needy is a false alternative that takes away our agency and destroys the family, it is no wonder they have made such statements as these:

“Occasionally, we receive questions as to the propriety of Church members receiving government assistance instead of Church assistance. Let me restate what is a fundamental principle. Individuals, to the extent possible, should provide for their own needs. Where the individual is unable to care for himself, his family should assist. Where the family is not able to provide, the Church should render assistance, not the government.” (Elder Ezra Taft Benson, General Conference, April 1977)

And finally, this last General Conference (Oct 2008), Bishop Keith B. McMullin quoting President Monson said, “Welfare principles . . . do not change. They will not change. They are revealed truths.”

It seems pretty clear right?  It is a principle that government welfare takes away the agency of the giver and the receiver, destroys the family unit, and leads to the government controlling the Church. For that reason we are not to receive welfare assistance from the government, and these welfare principles do not change… or do they?

Speaking to an Area Authority that will remain anonymous, I was made aware that a member of the Twelve Apostles (which I will not name) was in charge of and approved the following text from official manuals of the Church:

“In some instances, individual members may decide to receive assistance from other sources, including government.” (Handbook of Instructions & the booklet, Providing in the Lord’s Way)

“Government welfare agencies should be contacted only if the Church is unable to help us in the ways we need help.” (Lesson 12: The Father’s Responsibilities for the Welfare of His Family, Duties and Blessings of the Priesthood: Basic Manual for Priesthood Holders, Part A)

“Members may choose to use services in the community to meet their basic needs. Such services include hospitals, physicians, or other sources of medical care” (Handbook of Instructions & the booklet, Providing in the Lord’s way)

My last example, the “Managing Household Finances Wisely” course on the Church’s website, ProvidentLiving.org, encourages the use of the government welfare program/Ponzi scheme called Social Security.

These “changes” sound rather innocuous I admit, but under the direction of this same unnamed Apostle, these statements are to be interpreted by local authorities as a recommendation to tell members to seek government welfare assistance.  Additionally, much more bold language in favor of government welfare is used by local authorities all over the world.

So what?  Who cares if there has been a “toning down” of what members are being told regarding government welfare?  Well, there are a few ramifications that I would like to submit:

  1. Either past and current Prophets were wrong in regards to what happens when people use government welfare or our current leaders are telling us do something that will, at the absolute minimum, take away the agency of all involved, destroy the family unit, and lead to the government controlling the Church.
  2. If “Latter-day conservatives” promote or share the position of supporting agency, they are in opposition to the official position of the Church as found in its manuals and General Handbook of Instructions.
  3. The admonitions of Elder Ballard to “sustain the Constitution” and President John Taylor (among scores of others) to, “Perpetuate… the free agency of man” are now invalid since Federal welfare is a violation of the US Constitution and violates the agency of man and we are now advised to take part in those programs.

I ask you, what happens to members of the Church that advocate other principles of the Gospel that are now against the official position of the Church?  Will advocates of agency share the same fate?

I believe and submit to you, without exception (to my knowledge), that all principles of the Gospel revealed since the restoration that have been discontinued is the result of what is commonly referred to as “The Samuel Principle”. In the Old Testament, we read the account of how the majority of God’s chosen people rejected the Lord’s council en mass. For generations they were ruled under a system of judges, not drastically unlike our Constitutional Republic. Then, because it was “too much effort” for them to keep their judges in check, they wanted to replace it with one where they wouldn’t have to do anything in regards to their government. Just like the other nations of the world, they would have a king.

“Then the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, and said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways; now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.’ But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, ‘Give us a king to judge us.’ And Samuel prayed unto the Lord. And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee; for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.” (1 Samuel 8:4–7)

Time does not permit me to give sufficient examples of how this applies to the principle of agency and government welfare, so I will limit it to just one more.  In October of 2007, Nevada Senator and member of the Church, Harry Reid, had this to say about teachings of the Prophets in regards to agency and government welfare:

“(T)hese people have taken members of the church down the path that is the wrong path.”

With this and the statements recounted above by President Grant, among many other easily available examples, we see that there is a pattern of the people rejecting the revealed word of God on the matter, and as in ancient times, I am concerned that we are rejecting the Lord which means He cannot reign over us.

So what do we do?  To escape the promised consequences of rejecting the Lord, we must repent.  We must stop receiving government welfare, we must stop demanding government welfare, we must increase our fast offerings, and we must educate others and encourage them to take the same action.  We must recognize as Howard W Hunter said that, “When people do not use their freedoms responsibly and righteously, they will gradually lose these freedoms.  If man will not recognize the inequalities around him and voluntarily, through the gospel plan, come to the aid of his brother, he will find that through “a democratic process” he will be forced to come to the aid of his brother… (and) (b)oth have lost their freedom.” (“The Law of the Harvest“, Elder Howard W. Hunter. BYU Devotional. March 8, 1966.)  We must do as President Hinckley said, “If we are to build that Zion of which the prophets have spoken and of which the Lord has given mighty promise, we must set aside our consuming selfishness. We must rise above our love for comfort and ease, and in the very process of effort and struggle, even in our extremity, we shall become better acquainted with our God.” (General Conference, Oct. 1991).

Failure is not an option.

 

ADDENDUM: Some confusion has arisen in the intent or point of the article. This was a call for increased obedience to Gospel principles amongst members of the Church, NOT a questioning of any Church authority. The consequences for rejecting these principles is clear, and we must do a better job at not only defending them, but obeying them as well. This is about an introspective look, not about blaming others.

For an even more in-depth treatise on the subject, check out the text of a presentation given January 2014

About Ezra Taylor

Ezra Taylor has appeared in national (Fox news, USA Today), as well as several other regional publications. Ezra also writes for several freedom oriented publications, has been a radio talk show host and is a grassroots organizer. Visit his personal blog at http://ezrataylormc.blogspot.com Friend Ezra on Facebook https://m.facebook.com/ezra.taylor.12
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161 Responses to The Coming Apostasy of Latter-day Conservatives

  1. Gina Jensen says:

    Great article, I couldn’t agree more with everything that was said!

  2. Earnest says:

    I’m curious… did you guys organize an Atlas Shrugged viewing party?

    Did you go dressed up as the characters? Who got to be John Galt? Hank? Dagny? Francisco?

  3. Gina Jensen says:

    I had to re-read this article, and I wish I would have picked up on the first paragraph the first time I read it. I am confused by what you are saying about the church changing it’s stance on Liberty and Freedom. That doesn’t jive with me. The church does not change it’s position because of what the opinion of the saints may be. I can not imagine the church ex-communicating LDS members for standing up for freedom. That is like saying if the majority of church members felt that gay marriage was okay, that the church would change it’s position on it, and make it okay. I don’t know, maybe I have read it wrong, but it would be nice to have it made more clear on what you meant by that.

    • Earnest says:

      The Church WILL eventually change its position on gay marriage because of pressure from the members and the rest of the world.

      Anybody remember 1978?

      • Gina Jensen says:

        Are you referring to blacks getting the priesthood in 1978? That is very different than allowing gays to marry. The church will not change it’s stance on it.

        • The Church SHOULD change it’s stance on civil same-sex marriage. The scriptures condemn using one’s subjective moral opinion as justification to infringe upon the rights of others. Gays in California had the right to marry prior to Prop.8 for which we were the driving force. Our support of Prop.8 was contrary to scripture and therefore a classic example of “steadying the ark”. The prophets have stated that scripture takes precedence over their own words. So saying that the prophet supported prop.8 does not overrule scripture.

          • Marcus says:

            I didn’t visit the site above, but I am horrified the any LDS would think homosexual marriage is ok. What is more hedonistic than two men or two women having sex with each other? Soddom and Gamorah were DESTROYED because of that very reason. Plus I’m rather sure Honolulu was colosed to missionaries preaching the gospel because of the major sexual sins there. Just because most people want something does not mean it is true.

          • We are NOT saying that same-sex marriage is righteous. We are simply saying that the Church was wrong in opposing Prop. 8 since scripture (1 Cor. 10:29, D&C 134:4) condemns using one’s subjective morality as justification to infringe upon the rights of others. Gays HAD the right to marry in California and we LDS used our morals as justification to infringe upon that right. The prophets have stated that if their words contradict scripture, we are to ignore their words and follow scripture. The Proclamation on the family is NOT scripture (it hasn’t been sustained via Common Consent).

            We LDS were also victims 125 years ago when our unique form of marriage was outlawed by those whose morals oppossed it.

            We should obey scripture.

          • Rusty says:

            Kevin- First, your use of the two scriptures in your next posting (1 Cor. 10:29, D&C 134:4) is taking both out of context. The first has to do with the eating of meat that was sacrificed to idols, which was prohibited to Saints of the time. But Paul was talking about not giving offense. As for D&C 134 – this is EXACTLY why we had to oppose Prop. 8 – because if we didn’t, if we allow the GOVERNMENT to define marriage in a way that is against all the scriptures, then gay couples could present themselves at the Lord’s temples and demand that they be allowed to be married in the temple and the LAW of the land would force it to be so…except the church would probably close down the temples (at least, in this country). So you are on sandy soil using those scriptures.

          • Rusty, In context, verses 27 through 33 in 1 Cor. have Paul saying that we should limit our otherwise allowed behaviors if they offend others, which offense may cause them to reject the Gospel. In verse 29, though, Paul says that we do this only for the sake of the others’ conscience/feelings and rejects the idea that the opinions of others can limit our freedom of action. If the opinions of others can’t limit our freedom, how can we hypocritically state that OUR opinions CAN limit the freedom of others? If we liken the scriptures unto ourselves, we’ll see that we can’t use our beliefs to infringe upon the rights of others. Gays had the right to marry in CA and we violated the scriptures in supporting Prop.8. Sorry. There is no way around this.

          • Shannon says:

            No, the Church shouldn’t change it’s stance. Gays have the same rights as everyone else in regards to marriage. Men can marry women and women can marry men. Their rights to marry aren’t being infringed on.

          • Before Adam says:

            I find it disgusting that such ignorance of the principals of government taught by Joseph Smith should be trampled by those here. section 134 is correct in teaching we must keep the government from defining religious sacraments. Prop 8 was about church leaders fearing positive rights. (this was the summary of an answer to a direct question posed to Elder Bednar in our stake meeting) If we remove the governments ability to define a religious sacrament then we protect marriage. marriages and families were destroyed in the 1800′s because we had a different definition of marriage.

            Homosexuality (sexual intercourse outside of marriage. Marriage being the union of HUSBAND and WIFE) is a sin. However the blatant blasphemy in Mormonisim is a sin to orthodox christian

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            I’d love to hear the details of what Elder Bednar said.

          • Russell Collins says:

            Disinformation much? Homosexuals in California already had civil unions. Prop 8 was simply defining what marriage means. Not only that it’s entirely constitutional given the 10th amendment.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            Sorry Russell, but as I stated above, the scriptures are clear that we are forbidden from using our religious beliefs to infringe upon the rights/liberties of others. Gays had the RIGHT to MARRY prior to Prop. 8 and we used our religious beliefs to justify infringing upon this right/liberty. IOW, we violated official LDS doctrine and steadied the ark.

            We shouldn’t allow gays to be sealed in the temple, but we were wrong to deny them their RIGHT to marry at City Hall.

            We violated scripture. We, as a church, need to repent of this evil.

          • Ezra Taylor says:

            Red herring. It’s about the first amendment and what happens when gays are given rights by the government. See our article “Gays to be married in the Denmark Temple”

            Telling the Lords Church what it needs to repent of… Didn’t realize you were the Chief High Priest.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            I served my mission in Denmark and attended conferences and meetings in that building when it was a regular chapel right next to the mission office. I read that article last year and laughed. The parliment can make the state church marry gays because the state church is a government agency. Even if the parliment made it a law that all churches had to do it, the church would simply not perform LEGALLY binding marriages for anyone and simply perform sealings (NOT legally recognizex) for couples married at City Hall. ANYONE who says that legal gay marriage will lead to the Church being forced to seal gays in the temple is fear mongering and not thinking. Bottom Line.

            The Church violated scripture. Tell me HOW I’m wrong. We need to repent of our sin.

          • Andrew T says:

            Kevin, already individuals are being punished for not rendering services to homosexual couples (article in DesNews within past couple of weeks – a wedding photographer was one). You seriously think that this will not extend to groups of individuals (i.e., churches)? It may be a fear you don’t have, but for people to be concerned that significant pressure (i.e., financial penalties, civil lawsuits, etc.) will be placed on the Church for “discriminating” against homosexual couples, does seem to be legitimate “thinking” as there are already instances of it happening to individuals. To charge someone with “fear mongering” seems to demonstrate an appeal to emotion rather than “thinking.”

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            AT
            …individuals are being punished for not rendering services to homosexual couples (a wedding photographer)…

            KJK
            The photographer (not to mention the OR wedding cake baker) signed their business licenses promising not to discriminate against same-sex couples. Their respective state laws prohibit discriminating against gays. They violated those laws and lost in court. It would be no different than discriminating against LDS or Blacks. You will lose in court.

            Churches are given extra protection. Individuals are also free to openly express disdain for gays and homosexuality. You are free to do the same towards Blacks, LDS, Jews, etc…

            Businesses in states that have laws prohibiting discrimination against gays can’t discriminate. The photographer did.

        • sara says:

          Mosiah 29: 26-27 Alma 51:1–10
          Alma 46:11–24

          “What chance does Gotham have when the good people do nothing?….. ..We all know where to find him, as long as he keeps the bad people rich and the good people scared no-one will touch him. Good people like your parents won’t stand against injustice, they’re gone.”
          Batman Begins

          do we want this said of our country? then why are we afraid to stand up and make our cause known to give a title for others to flock? and why are we divided among ourselves for we know that ‘a house divided against itself cannot stand’.

        • Mitch says:

          Kevin: You asked to be told where you are wrong–here it is. No one has fundamental right to “marry” at least in the terms we are using. Marriage in this context is actually a government license…a seal of approval that the government accepts or legitimizes this relationship or union. But fundamental rights, sometimes called natural rights or god-given rights are different. No one has a fundamental, natural, god-given right to force others to accept their relationship or force the issuance of a license. However, everyone has a fundamental right of association. Gays have a fundamental right to associate how they want…they don’t have a fundamental right to demand society accept or condone that relationship.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            1. Agreed, there is no fundamental right to require society to accept or condone relationships. However, the Supreme Court DID say that there is a fundamental right to marriage (See Loving). That decision rejected the idea that subjective repulsion is not sufficient to justify denying equal protection to marriage for consenting adults.

            2. I asked above how I was wrong when I showed that legal SSM would never force the church to open our temples to seal gay couples or to perform civil ceremonies for gays. You failed to even address that point. Those claiming that it would, have the burden of proof to show how it would and to overcome my above assertions. Few even try. They are simply fanning emotional flames and hoping people won’t stop and think logically.

          • Mitch says:

            It’s not logical to say you agree that no one has a fundamental right to force the issuance of a license (condone relationships) and then in the next sentence argue that there is a fundamental right to marriage. Marriage (in this case) is nothing more than an official government sanction of a relationship. It’s a license, a government document that condones, accepts, ratifies a relationship in the eyes of the state.

            You can’t bootstrap your way to joining a fundamental rights argument with an equal protection argument. they are different.

            If you agree that no one has a fundamental right to a government issued license…then you have to look at what society (legislature) has established as the criteria for the license. In this case it’s one man & one women.

          • Mitch says:

            Now you can take on the equal protection issue. which is, does society discriminate against any man marrying any woman? When blacks could not marry whites, that was an equal protection violation, because it was a man not allowed to marry a woman. But gays cannot argue that society is failing to apply the existing licensing criteria equally…they want to force a change in the licensing criteria.
            At that point, they, and you (it seems) erroneously claim “fundamental right” as justification for changing the criteria. they say, “you are violating equal protection because you are denying us a fundamental right”. But, as stated earlier, the issuance of state licenses are NOT fundamental rights.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            It was claimed earlier that marriage is not a fundamental right, yet the Loving ruling said that the laws violated Equal Protection. This shows that marriage IS a fundamental right and/or Equal Protection also applies to non-fundamental rights.

            Regarding “forcing a change in the licensing criteria”, criteria need to be based on objective needs. There is no objective reason to deny gays marriage. They are no different than 2 senior citizens marrying. Neither couple is able to produce kids. The law calls that “similarly situated”. Groups that are “similarly situated” must be treated equally.

            The USSC said that marriage IS a fundamental right and those rights must be granted Equal Protection, especially to groups that are “similarly situated”.

          • Mitch says:

            Kevin,
            your arguments are getting rounder every post. I think u see the problem posed by the fact that no one has a fundamental right to government issued licenses–period. To argue otherwise is disingenuous. U agreed at first, but then retraced your steps when the logic started to point in a direction u don’t want to go.

            Objective needs: now ur just making stuff up. There is no such thing as an objective needs test for legislatures when creating criteria for licenses or for anything else.

            the USSC also said blacks were chattel…what’s ur point? we are talking about truth, logic, reason. It does not change the fact that it’s a logical impossibility to claim that people have a fundamental god-given, absolute right to a government issued license.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            Mitch, it was claimed that only fundamental rights deserve Equal Protection. The Loving decision was based on Equal Protection. this means that marriage IS a fundamental right OR that EP applies to non-F.R.s as well. Either way EP applies to marriage. There have to be a compelling state interest to deny EP. there is non regarding SSM. You can bring up the issue of kids, but since we allow senior citizens and the infertile/sterile to marry, gays inability to produce kids genetically related to both parents is no reason to deny marriage. It’s a denial of EP. We can claim that kids raised by gays miss out by not having a mom and a dad, but we allow less than ideal parents to marry – murderers, child molesters, drug addicts, etc… There is no reason to deny EP.

          • Ezra Taylor says:

            I’m lost as to why this conversation is on his article. I must have missed something

          • Mitch says:

            continue:
            people have a fundamental right to association…not a state issued license. The LDS people had a right to plural relationships, but they did not have a right to force others to accept their relationships by issuing state licenses. The LDS had a right to attempt to change the criteria via legislation to include plural relationships for state licences…furthermore, the federal government violated LDS fundamental rights to association by declaring those relationship criminal. Just like the state governments have violated gay rights in the past by criminalizing their associations.

            But, I repeat, NO ONE has a pre-existing, god-given, fundamental, absolute right to a state issued license (for anything, including marriage)

            and i think u know that–but…

          • Mitch says:

            Their argument begins to look like piR^2…they assume the issuance of a state license condoning their relationship is a fundamental right and then argue a violation of equal protection because their “fundamental right” has been violated.
            they have the right to use the legislature to change the criteria, but they do NOT have a right to forcefully change the criteria in court using a “fundamental right” argument. Further, since there is no fundamental right to a state issued document condoning their relationship, they also cannot prevail on the equal protection argument.

          • Mitch says:

            BTW, relying on the supremes as support for any logical, ethical, or consistent support for what is right, what is constitutional, what is consistent with the DOI is a fools errand. The supreme court is a 9 person mini legislature driven by highly partisan politics and nothing more…so quoting their opinion is not sufficient support for anything.
            Finally, no one can logically say that SSM will never be used as a means of forcing churches to perform such marriages. Neither you nor I can say what will or will not happen with certainty.

          • Kevin Kirkham says:

            Mitch
            Finally, no one can logically say that SSM will never be used as a means of forcing churches to perform such marriages. Neither you nor I can say what will or will not happen with certainty.

            KJK
            Even many gays don’t want churches to be forced to perform SSM. A constitutional amendment would EASILY be passed protecting churches. Even if that didn’t happen, churches, including ours, could simply quit performing legally recognized marriages. They’d send their people to City Hall to wed and then perform a religious ceremony that has no legal standing. This would prevent churches from having to perform SSM ceremonies since they didn’t offer marriage to anyone.

            Anyone who says SSM will lead to gays marrying in the temple is fear-mongering and not thinking.

          • Mitch says:

            However, it’s foolish to assert that those who support SSM would not attempt to use every coercive means available to hurt organizations that disagree with them–the proof is everywhere that when any cause reaches the level of political correctness all bets are off. And when a politically correct cause gains government sanction it’s axiomatic that force will be used to both promote that cause and to punish those who disagree. So i think you are being incredibly naive to believe the machine behind the movement for SSM is satisfied to let those with a different belief system peacefully co-exist.

      • Jason says:

        Members of the church would do well to remember instances in church history when the church *DID* change its position, particularly as a result of public opinion. Polygamy, blacks and the priesthood, the Equal Rights Amendment, etc. The church is based on revelation which fundamentally means that is bound to change to fit the current needs. Add to that the fact that more members now live outside of the US, many in nations that aren’t so hysterical over using tax dollars to keep the poor alive.

        I have to admit, I was opposed to this article from the beginning because it has a simplistic view that all church leaders have said the same thing form the beginning, except in times when they are falling away from the truth. The fact is that many GA’s have disagreed with one another over many issues throughout church history. So, cherry-picking some of the blatantly conservative GA’s quotes on freedom is a bit one sided and doesn’t take into account that Mormon theology and doctrines are constantly evolving. That said, I am in full agreement with the final paragraph. If you conservatives want to promote freedom by getting people off of welfare (if such a thing really is always detrimental to freedom), then you better get up and put the principles of charity and compassion to work- even if it means giving more than you perceive to be your ‘fair share’. If you don’t want government to do it, then you better take charge, because millions of poor kids are dying every day around the world from preventable diseases and that is just plain wrong.

        • Gina Jensen says:

          I disagree, even though they are not practiced anymore, does not mean the church has officially changed it’s position on the subject. Take the law of consecration for example, the Law of Consecration was given to the early saints, which was eventually taken away. It wasn’t taken away because God just changed his mind. The Law of Consecration is still very much a part of the Gospel plan, even though it isn’t one that is active here on earth. He took it away because the saints couldn’t handle it yet. It’s like the Mosaic law. It had it’s time and purpose which was to prepare the Israelites for the higher law.

          The same can be said of the reasons why the early saints practiced polygamy. There were several reasons why the Lord put polygamy in place for a season; to take care of the widows and fatherless children and to increase the numbers of the righteous. Once the Lord determined that the numbers were sufficient and all were taken care of, he recalled that portion of His plan; like putting away a tool when it is no longer needed. They were both, here for a time and a season, and not taken away because of popular demand by the members.

          Freedom and agency, along with families is our whole purpose for existence in this life. If we don’t have freedom to choose, then we can’t make our own choices. It is what the war in heaven was about, and it continues here on earth. To say the church would change it’s position on that subject, is saying that it wouldn’t exist.

          As far as getting everyone off of the govt. welfare, it would make people more generous, because the govt. wouldn’t be taxing us so much. It would be a lot easier to give more if we weren’t giving our money to a wasteful govt. I know I could do better with my money and make it go farther, if I could manage it instead of the govt. If people had to rely on one another more, instead of having a govt. middle man, then the poor would feel more uncomfortable in their poverty, and people giving would become more charitable.

          • Orr says:

            I disagree, even though they are not practiced anymore, does not mean the church has officially changed it’s position on the subject.
            ~~~~
            Then what is the church’s official position on blacks and the priesthood? Blood atonement? Women speaking in general conference? Seems like they did a complete 180 on these issues…

            “There were several reasons why the Lord put polygamy in place for a season; to take care of the widows and fatherless children and to increase the numbers of the righteous.”
            ~~~
            Are you really serious? The only statement that is true is “to increase the numbers of the righteous.” That was the sole purpose of polygamy, to make babies, as stated in DC. There is nothing in the revelation about taking care of widows.. where does marrying 14 year old girls fit into “Taking care of the poor old widows plan?” Does God really not know of any other way to take care of widows or fatherless children other than polygamy?

            There was not a shortage of men, there has always been more women than men in church, monogamy would could have easily been practiced.

            The reason why polygamy was stopped is because of pressure from the United States. Other wise, why was polygamy secretly practiced years after the Manifesto?

          • Mike says:

            Thanks for your comment, Gina.

            However, I have to say that my feeling is that Orr is correct in his/her interpretation on the polygamy issue.

            The other bone I have to pick is that the law of consecration was never rescinded from the modern church. What was eliminated was the United Order. The Law of Consecration continues to be a key part of the Gospel, and I think we can gain a better understanding of how this law is to be lived by attending the temple endowment and by pondering.

            For more info on this critical subject, I would encourage you to get your hands on a copy of ‘Approaching Zion’ by Hugh Nibley. The book was amazing and changed my outlook on a lot of things.

          • sara says:

            after the manifesto– those married in polygamy were allowed to remain married– but no new marriages were performed. we know that polyagmy is an eternal principle as is marriage however it is not a knowledge of the doctrine but how you live the doctrines that will get you to the kingdom so why continue to delve down rabbit holes?

          • Ezra Taylor says:

            Not exactly true. Apostles and even Presidents of the Church continued to get married plurally, documented upto the 1904-1906. What actually happened is important to understand how we need to respond in our own life events in context of the spirit.

        • Miss Kate says:

          So since you are saying if you conservatives want…that must mean you are happy with the loss of your freedom and agency? what do you consider to be my fair share? I earn what I make, the past leaders of the Church always counseled us to see to the needs of our own families, but as members we have always stood up and paid more than has ever been asked of us. Our fair share is not just in monetary means my friend. I know members who are doctors and they do as they did in the days when the churches in the US oversaw healthcare. They donate their time to treating the poor and the destitute who can not afford to pay. There is a reason Brigham young counseled us to ask of the Lord for ourselves whether or not our leaders were actually doing the wiwill of God.

          • Miss Kate says:

            Also, the law of consecration was recinded after it failed in Missouri. That was a test. Many, many, many are confusing man made socialism and communism for the law of consecration. If socialism and communism came from Heavenly Father they would not repeatedly fail in every country they have gone to. That ideaology leaves behind destruction and devastation. The Gospel is what delivers peace. When the division occurs I know I will be on the right side, and I know without a doubt that should the Church reject freedom loving individuals, the Lord will establish a new House for his righteous. The Gospel never changes. It is wicked men who change the interpretation.

      • hmmm… I don’t know about that. Then how far will the Church take it? Would they take back their stance that Jesus is God if the body rejected it?

      • Christopher Breeden says:

        Amen to that. Just because the church is built on sound principles does not mean that individuals are infallible. I think it may still take time before the church is ready though.

      • James says:

        the church will NEVER change of gay marriage! Pressure of the members and the rest of the world will NEVER change GODS LAWS… we (the church and world) need to change to GODS Law… are you gay?

      • Janelle Rafferty says:

        You need to look at the addres given by Elder Oaks on the new mormonandgays.org website. He stated that the church’s position concerning marriage between man and woman will never change. What is at stake here is the government infringing upon our ability to workship as we see fit, it is a religious freedom issue really. Not a gay marriage issue. The church has actually said that they have no objection to civil unions, but that the government has no place to mandate a ceremony or sacrament or where it can or should happen. I suggest that the church would shut down temples before they let this happen. It happened before when plural marriage was banned and members still continued to use the Endowmnet House to perform plural marriage.

        • Ezra Taylor says:

          Actually, the Church has stated it is against civil unions. http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/interview-oaks-wickman-same-gender-attraction
          “One way to think of marriage is as a bundle of rights associated with what it means for two people to be married. What the First Presidency has done is express its support of marriage and for that bundle of rights belonging to a man and a woman. The First Presidency hasn’t expressed itself concerning any specific right. It really doesn’t matter what you call it. If you have some legally sanctioned relationship with the bundle of legal rights traditionally belonging to marriage and governing authority has slapped a label on it, whether it is civil union or domestic partnership or whatever label it’s given, it is nonetheless tantamount to marriage. That is something to which our doctrine simply requires us to speak out and say, “That is not right. That’s not appropriate.””

    • Sue Venable says:

      I hate to differ with such a well intentioned LDS member, but I do know members of the Church who have been excommunicated for standing up for freedom in ways that bishops did not understand. I have been threatened with excommunication myself for quoting prophets and relating their words to our world today, covering these very principles. I even interviewed with a member of the Stake Presidency and he did not ask me if I was a member of or supported any organization whose teachings or principles were in opposition to the Gospel. When I questioned why he didn’t ask me that question, he said he had the authority to not ask any questions he deemed unnecessary and then we discussed the meaning of that question and he said we would have to agree to disagree.

  4. This article sorta takes away from others that I did agree with, Ezra. Pushing folks into apostacy isn’t the answer.

    • Brian says:

      I think the author does make many excellent points in this article, though I also have some reservations about a few things myself. I don’t think the author’s intention is to push folks into apostasy, and sometimes it’s easy to misunderstand the author’s intentions, such is the nature of written communication.

      Overall I enjoy what I feel is a message encouraging all of us to increase our efforts in standing up for Agency and Liberty.

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      Thank you. My intent is not to push people into apostasy, and I am not sure how one would come to that conclusion. This was to encourage us all to be better warriors for truth.

      • You are suggesting apostasy by merely your title, let alone the article. “The Coming Apostacy of Latter-day Conservatives”? Really???

        • Ezra Taylor says:

          I am sorry this has you so upset. The title was not telling people to apostatize. The title along with the article should show that conclusion is as far apart from what as written as could be. Could you please show me where and why, besides your misunderstanding of the title, that I encouraged apostasy?

        • Ezra, a lot of what you wrote is very good, and you are to be commended for this. But there’s good, better, and best. Patriots I honor build the church up, and at the same time promote these principles, that the church has NOT renounced. Your statement at the very beginning “This rejection may slowly be causing a change in the official position of the church.” isn’t true. The “people” rejecting these truths doesn’t mean the church is. The church is actually promoting the principle of agency by letting “the people” choose, knowing that we have the right to be wrong. We rejected these principles in 1970 and by-and-large the church stopped talking about them. This doesn’t mean they aren’t true and supported by the church. They are merely letting it’s members have the right to be apathetic (in most cases), and outright wrong. I will gladly send you my book in PDF format at SavingHumanity.us, scheduled to be published later this year. I would just advise, be careful. You and I both know a lot of people who really do apostasize from the church because of their passion for the freedom fight. In reality the church should be everyone’s anchor, and by realizing the cirumstances which took place in the early 70′s along with the related prophecy which preceeded this point, look upon their involvement as a patriot (i.e. Independent American Party) as an increadible opportunity to restore Civil Law (versus Spiritual Law). Again, I talk all about this in the book. Another organization is to be built! Want a PDF copy? Thank you for allowing me to comment.

  5. You wrote: “I believe and submit to you, without exception (to my knowledge), that all principles of the Gospel revealed since the restoration that have been discontinued is the result of what is commonly referred to as ‘The Samuel Principle’”

    That is a gross oversimplification. For the best overview of the issue see: “What is our Doctrine” by Robert L. Millet.

    http://www.ldsces.org/xml/iws/60500/RLM%20What%20is%20Our%20Doctrine.pdf

    Notice that it is being hosted on ldsces.org, and official web page of the Church.

  6. Also, to apply the Samuel principle to why Political Bensoneism is not being taught in the Church today would do violence to the historical record. All evidence indicates that although it is doctrine that freedom is important, and that the constitution is inspired, the interpretation of those ideas to imply ultra-conservative politics was NEVER Church doctrine. The Brethren were constantly trying to get ELDER Benson to STOP sharing these sorts of personal opinions as if they were doctrine even back then.

    I think it’d be interesting to recall Pres. Kimball’s original response to Elder Benson’s 14 fundamentals. This is an excerpt from Edward Kimball’s draft manuscript of “Lengthen your Stride”, his biography of his father, Pres. Kimball: “In February 1980, Elder Benson gave a talk at Brigham Young University titled “Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet.” It emphasized that the living prophets’ statements take precedence over those of earlier prophets. He also asserted, “Those who would remove prophets from politics would take God out of government.”

    Spencer was concerned about the talk. He wanted to prevent any misperception that the Church espoused ultraconservative politics and wanted to discourage an unthinking follow-the-leader mentality. Church spokesman Don LeFevre told the press the day after the speech that it is “simply not true” that the Church President’s “word is law on all issues—including politics.” The uproar continued, however, and a week later President Kimball and his counselors issued still another statement to “reaffirm that we . . . exercise no constraint on the freedom of individuals to make their own choices in these matters.” While President Kimball himself was politically conservative, he was committed to allowing multiple political viewpoints to be heard within the Church. For example, he gave approval for the chairman of the Supreme Court of the Soviet Union to speak at the BYU law school.” In a similar vein he also included the following: “In 1974, when asked in an interview whether a good Mormon could be a liberal Democrat, Elder Benson replied, “I think it would be very hard if he was living the gospel and understood it.” He also said that the Church might at some point endorse political candidates. When these remarks appeared in print, they caused a flood of calls and letters from Church members protesting his views. (Spencer had Wendell Ashton collect official statements about Church leader involvement in politics in preparation for the meeting with Elder Benson.)

    Spencer, who disapproved of public political statements by Church leaders as potentially divisive, discussed the matter with Elder Benson. Spencer understood his worthy motives and patriotic spirit, but reminded him that “as President of the Council of Twelve” he should avoid involvement in politically sensitive issues. Elder Benson apologized, and the interview closed on a cordial note. (President Benson’s biography does not mention the incident. Spencer recorded in his journal, “I doubt if he will get into politics any more.”)

    But in November, just before Election Day, Elder Benson’s passion for his cause prevailed, and in a spontaneous expression he publicly endorsed the American Party. He noted that the Church was nonpartisan, but in his extemporary remarks he also said that he believed the American Party was established on divine, eternal principles.

    “Never in decades have I read a set of principles of any party that come so close to the philosophy which I have and which I think my own Church people have.” He went on to assert that “the real hope” of a nation in crisis lay with people such as those gathered at the rally.

    Newspaper accounts of these statements caused great consternation, heightened when a radio report erroneously said the statements had President Kimball’s approval. Calls flooded the Church phone lines. Spencer hurried to his office to draft a statement reiterating, without direct reference to the incident, that “we take no partisan stand as to candidates or parties, and any person who makes representation to the contrary does so without authorization.”

    The next day the full First Presidency asked Elder Benson to meet with them. Spencer’s journal notes that they “discussed at great length” his remarks. They reminded him that “all General Authorities must speak with one voice and . . . [not] take any partisan position.”
    And that’s ignoring all of the reprimands Elder Benson received from David O McKay (who was fairly permissive of Elder Benson’s statements), Joseph Fielding Smith (who was much less permissive), and Harold B Lee.

    It doesn’t do to repeat the mistakes of the past, and in this case, the change is due to an improved desire to follow the prophet, and to follow the official Church policy and doctrine, not the Samuel principle.

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      I find it humorous when people that don’t subscribe to a certain doctrine, try to pin it on one authority ignoring the multitude of other sources given to substantiate the position. In addition to the numerous examples I gave in the article, unless you are willing to call President Benson a liar, President McKay did more than tolerate Benson’s views. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RCoLZSi5u48&feature=channel_video_title

      The principles of liberty have been taught clearly and consistently by the Presidents of the Church, as well as many of the Apostles. This is not the doctrine of a single man, but of the Restored Gospel.

    • “I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by Him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self-security, trusting their eternal destiny in the hands of their leaders with a reckless confidence that in itself would thwart the purposes of God in their salvation…” –Brigham Young

      Show me anything where a later prophet has renounced ANY of Ezra Taft Benson’s pulpit remarks.

      • Gina Jensen says:

        Each prophet who is on earth is here for a purpose, and what they say should not be discounted. Each one is like a building block, how heavenly father teaches us by line upon line precept upon precept. I feel Ezra Taft Benson’s purpose on earth was to highlight our freedoms, to teach us how to preserve and protect those freedoms, and the Book of Mormon. He loved those two things dearly. I reject the idea that any prophet would renounce any of his remarks.

        • Miss Kate says:

          He never renounced his remarks! EVER! If the liberty, and the Constitution is not essential to the Church then why is it mentioned in the Doctrine and Covenants? That is what our foundation is based on as Latter Day Saints, the Book of Mormon is the history and another testimony of other witnesses to Christ, and the Bible so long as it is interpreted correctly is the Gospel itself. These three things along with the Pearl of Great Price round out the fulness of the Gospel. Rather than quibble about whether or not the leaders are right, read the scriptures for yourselves and let the Spirit guide you to answers. Remember, even the elect in the Church would be decieved.

      • Where is the reference on that B.Y. quote…awesomeness!

    • Paul Vanasco says:

      James, I am just trying to get a better understanding. If Ezra Taft Benson Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet was questionable, why was it repeated October 2010 General Conference? The fourteen points were the same but with different items cited to support the positions. IMO still had the same spirit as Benson’s though. Did details need some tweaking?

      Ezra Taft Benson Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet
      http://speeches.byu.edu/reader/reader.php?id=6751

      Claudio R. M. Costa Obedience to the Prophets
      http://lds.org/general-conference/2010/10/obedience-to-the-prophets?lang=eng

    • Flying Snail says:

      I’ve never seen a post this long before. I get only 777 characters, while your post is 777 words. How did you do that?

  7. Alon says:

    “the interpretation of those ideas to imply ultra-conservative politics was NEVER Church doctrine.”

    As far as I can tell, your post contains the only words of wisdom in this thread.

  8. I’m surprised by all the controversy here. The war in heaven began pre-mortally and continues today… over free agency. There is no doubt about it that the Church believes the Constitution of the United States was divinely inspired and that a society operating under the intention of the Founders offers an environment of free agency to the people.

    While I submit that some things in this article could have been worded better to be more clear, I agree with a comment above from the author that Freedom Principles were not ONLY taught by President Benson. They were taught by MANY of the Presidents and Apostles.

    It is also true that we don’t hear these teachings in such volume today, and I have to agree with the author that it is because God will only send a warning so much. If the people fail to take heed, like the people in Samuel’s day, he will let them have what they *think* they want (or at least let them suffer the consequences of their apathy).

  9. Lilia says:

    I agree with the ‘Samuel Principle’. Heavenly Father gives us what we want, good or bad. If the majority of the members reject the Prophets teachings, as the majority has since Joseph Smith’s day until now, he will give them the falsehoods, errors & delusions that they desire. He will let false teachings to be taught & accepted in the Church.

    Many things that the Prophets have warned us against over & over through the years, like divorce, birth control, socialism, etc., are now allowed in the Church & thus most members believe that they are ok now, because they are allowed.

    Yet Heavenly Father just gave the people they falsehoods & evil they wanted, even though the severe consequences for such things are postponed by leaders & will probably not come upon them until the next life.

    ‘Divorce’, for example, is still usually adultery like it always was, unless it’s a rare justified case. Yet now divorce (adultery) is allowed to occur in the Church & people are allowed to remarry without immediately applying the eternal & dire consequences which will surely come later.

    So if divorce has now become accepted in the Church, despite it being one of the most vile & destructive of all sins, then a far lesser thing like homosexuality might also become accepted, even though Heavenly Father himself would never really accept it, but it could appear to most that he does, like most think God approves of divorce today. Yet he will allow us to have what we want, even to our destruction & condemnation.

    Unfortunately, as prophesied, it seems that everyone in the Church today has now been deceived to support & do evil, except a few. Thus the ‘apostasy’ foretold seems to have now happened & evil is now accepted as good. And good is called evil by everyone, even in the Church.

    • Sandra Christman says:

      I wholeheartedly concur! I see this Apostocy within the church happening as people are caught up in their own opinions. We need to follow the council of the Prophets to pray unceasingly and to search and ponder the scriptures daily. By doing these things we can have the Spirit direct our life and not be tossed around by every idle wind.

  10. Ezra Taylor says:

    Ezra Taft Benson said, “Sometimes the Lord hopefully waits on his children to act on their own, and when they do not, they lose the greater prize, and the Lord will either drop the entire matter and let them suffer the consequences ”

    This is the entire article summed up in a single sentence. I hope it will clarify any misconceptions of its purpose.

  11. Lance Larsen says:

    I think the principle taught by Joseph Smith is applicable here:

    “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.” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith)

    Of course the church leaders emphasize different things at different times. They are entitled to revelation in their callings and choose their focus accordingly. Just because they don’t emphasize the things YOU want them to emphasize doesn’t mean they aren’t focusing on what the LORD want them to focus on. You are certainly entitled to your opinion, but Joseph’s principle about such criticism of church leaders while proclaiming your own views to be correct seems pretty clear. I often find reading council from previous church leaders to be instructive, but the council I trust most closely for MY time is the council of the current church authorities. They may not be perfect in all things, but I have felt many times that the council they are giving is from God and addresses the greatest challenges that the church is facing.

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      Thank you for taking the time to comment. However, I am confused as to who is saying Church leaders aren’t focusing on what they want them to? My article was addressed to members and our need to be more obedient to Gospel principles.

  12. I felt like I was reading my own thoughts. I recently did a scholarly study of the Old Testament through George Wythe University. My final paper was on the fact that over and over again in the scriptures of the Old Testament, we get what we ask for, or what punishment we seek for others. I thought a lot about Samuel, and I came to the same conclusions. Agency and liberty are hard. Being a “subject” to a king is actually easy. It will take a lot of work to maintain our liberty and our agency (freedom).

    My husband and I talked at length about this very subject. My blog is not geared directly toward the LDS faith, but to all who seek liberty, even those that are athiests, so I didn’t write the blog post. If I would have written one, this would be it.

    Thanks for the great quotes. I teach a class on the cycles of history, and I’ve recently put together an LDS version. I think I’m going to use some of those great quotes for the class. Great article.

  13. Jacki Mitchell says:

    I think a lot of people misunderstood this article. I found it to be full of truths. The Brethren have spoken. Entitlements and welfare bring down liberty and freedom. We need to change our course America!!!!!!!

  14. There has to be much change for this country to continue. By allowing Federal reserve control Of ” economics” we have jeopardized our well being.. and must restore and repair ” to the law that governs” for faith , freedom and families.. and will require much change.. for latter day saints, faith will be tested, in tithes and offerings and saving.. and in trying to implement no fractional reserve banking and no usury… which sets up strife.. but was the original Kirtland safety society… principles of no speculation , just honest respository for peace and prosperity.. http://UnionStarFederationForFamilies.weebly.com

  15. Chris Blackburn says:

    Dear Ezra, hopefully you well-understood the mixed reception you would receive in response to this article. The comments here, in my opinion, reflect the widely varying stance of Church members from the staunch and righteous to apostate or very nearly.

    Let me state very clearly my own view that Gospel doctrine never changes. However, we as a church body, may modify the way we behave or follow those doctrines. In fact, the Lord reserves the right to impose doctrine and take doctrine away from us, but the doctrine itself does not change. What is ever given by the Lord as truth will forever remain true.

    As was mentioned by Gina, above, The Law of Consecration is very much still a part of the Gospel. Though a definitive stance has not been re-iterated lately, receiving assistance from government is not, nor has it ever been considered a sin, wholesale. Someone receiving social security assistance is not necessarily in danger of damnation. However, accepting government dole when it is not necessary is questionable. Thankfully, the Lord will judge. The Townsend Plan should never have passed, and if we as righteous Latter Day Saints would have done our duty when it was a bill in congress, it never would have.

    The fact is, Communism is satanic as is anything that limits our ability to individually choose for ourselves. This is truth. It stands alone needing neither believer or detractor. Anyone who wishes to argue against the truth is like someone trying to put out the sun by spitting toward it from the earth. Further, any choice we make to support anything that limits our ability to individually choose for ourselves is a sin. If anyone has a question as to what we should or should not support they should seek guidance directly from the Lord.

    I fully realize there are readers here who would stand and spit toward the sun. It is my considered opinion that we are well beyond the time to attempt convincing them otherwise. My brethren and sisters, the sifting has begun. If you haven’t chosen a side yet, you are in danger of being lukewarm which is worse than choosing the wrong side.

  16. Michele says:

    The Church has begun changing its stance with regards to the Constitution when it came out publicly in support of HB 116 and all the bills involving Illegal immigration that passed the legislature in Utah recently. The Church admits they are all unconstitutional bills but their concern seems to be that families remain intact. It has something to do with support of what it deems good laws verses bad laws. Fine but why support bills that they admit are unconstitutional??? Aren’t all unconstitutional laws bad….. ah that is where your article seems to kick in.

    Someone I know said that the Church is no longer in the phase of trying to preserve the Constitution, they are now in the phase of gathering as many as they can into the Church before all goes a rye. This opinion is based on their reading of one of H Verlan Anderson’s books, the name of which escapes me now. Ezra your article may explain this change, but it does not explain why their PR department is involved in flat out saying one thing one week and denial the next. I know I called them myself, along with a bunch of friends of mine, regarding their stance on the bills and illegal immigration and we all experience the same story line followed by denial and change of position. Very disturbing but in the end I am only answerable to God for my actions, not the Church’s PR department’s.

    • Karen says:

      The Church’s stance on illegal immigrants does not imply a rejection of Constitutional principles.

      “Illegal immigration” is not addressed in the Constitution. The federal govt’s role was to make uniform laws about naturalization, so that becoming a citizen would not be easier in some states than in others.

      There are no Constitutional provisions about non-citizens living here. Why? Because it wasn’t necessary.

      Before income tax, welfare, social security, and federal education laws, there was little benefit to NOT being a citizen. Taxes were collected as people bought and sold, so whether you were a citizen or not, you paid. It was brilliant.

      The introduction of a federal income tax meant you could now cheat the system by being paid under the table. We dangle carrots in the form of welfare, “free” education, and endless other entitlements, then argue about how to keep people out!

      Congress tramples the Constitution, then has the audacity to offer us the false choice of either seeing our country bankrupted by illegals or submitting to Berlin-style border security, complete with papers and a wall.

      We could turn 2/3 of Congress over in 4 years & repeal all this, but to do it, we must WORK to seek out & support TRUE constitutionalists.

      Please help us do it.

      • Michele says:

        Good try Karen but the Church’s official position on immigration as found in the LDS Church’s Policy Handbook 2 on this subject:
        Generally, members are encouraged to remain in their native lands to build up and strengthen the Church. Opportunities for Church activity and for receiving and sharing the blessings of the gospel are increasing greatly throughout the world…. As members remain in their homelands and work to build the Church there, great blessings will come to them personally and to the Church. Stakes and wards throughout the world will be strengthened, making it possible to share the blessings of the gospel with an even greater number of Heavenly Father’s children.

        Experience has shown that those who emigrate often encounter language, cultural, and economic challenges, resulting in disappointment and personal and family difficulties.

        Missionaries should not ask their parents, relatives, or others to sponsor members who wish to emigrate to other countries.

        Members who emigrate to any country should comply with applicable laws.

        When coming to the United States or other countries on student or tourist visas, members should not expect to find jobs or obtain permanent visas after entering that country.

        To be considered for Church employment in any country, a person must meet all conditions of immigration and naturalization laws. The Church does not sponsor immigration through Church employment.

  17. Floyd says:

    homosexuality is so vile that the church will never promote packing poop.
    Some bishops suggest state welfare to save their ward budgets.
    Government socialism is never good, never was, and never will be. Imagine what a strong message it would be if we could point out to Hussein Obummer that not a single LDS required welfare or food stamps and that only the lazy, devil worshipers found stealing from the rich favorable to earning their own living. Remember that there is no such thing as a right that requires participation of any other person to make it happen.

  18. 1. The church IS in apostasy right now because the people.
    2. The Lord has withdrawn his protective and sustaining influence until the church has been purged. “until the people sanctified themselves the power was not renewed unto them.”-J. E. Talmage
    3. Kelly Gneiting has correctly quoted the guiding principle that has brought about our destruction: “I am more afraid that this people have so much confidence in their leaders that they will not inquire for themselves of God whether they are led by Him. I am fearful they settle down in a state of blind self-security, trusting their eternal destiny in the hands of their leaders with a reckless confidence that in itself would thwart the purposes of God in their salvation…” –Brigham Young
    4. If the “church” told you to hand over your food storage in a disaster would you solicit confirmation from the spirit before you handed it over?
    5. Blah, blah, blah All I can be sure of is that all hell is coming. Batten down the hatches!!!!

  19. Anthony Bentley says:

    The obvious reason the prophets are mostly silent on the constitution in recent years is that that we are now a world-wide church with most of our members living in socialist countries.

    The primary duty of the church is to save souls and most of those souls have no hope of living under our inspired constitution until Jesus returns, so why would they torment the majority of the Saints by constantly telling them that their governments are wicked?

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      Actually, the fact that we are a world wide Church is the exact reason why President Benson gave his talk “Our Divine Constitution” http://lds.org/general-conference/1987/10/our-divine-constitution?lang=eng&query=our+divine+constitution

      He said those principles were for a world wide Church whose duty it was to save souls and bring them to Christ.

      • Anthony Bentley says:

        Of course the principles of liberty are intended for the whole world, and when God decides that the world is finally ready to receive them you will start hearing about it once again from the living prophets. In the mean time expect the prophetic messages to concentrate on gathering and saving the elect living in the heathen (socialist) nations, perfecting the members and redeeming the dead.

        It is almost unbearable for faithful LDS to see our inspired Constitution being shredded by the socialist in our own country. I can only imagine how much worse it is for our brothers living in the more socialist parts of the word.

        For now, the greatest relief from the horrors of socialism is to concentrate on spreading the gospel of salvation. When the time comes, the millions who have been converted to Christ living around the world will likewise embrace the Constitution as taught by President Bensen and the other prophets.

      • L. Marie Brown says:

        Oh my! my heart races with what I have read, let me interject my feelings as I am a member of the Church and raised my children on welfare and from 1991 SSI, foodstamps, and medicade. First of all I would like to thank those who have contributed. However my family is large enough and with-out so many on the GW(gov.welfare), that they have taken good care of us. With some to spare. It was this mindset that allowed me to keep my since of freedom. There were only a few occasions where I needed assistance from fast offerings, and was not given it freely, I was more than happy to do service for it. On one occasion a member called me out to the bishop that I had abused the fast offering, of course I was found innocent, but not until a long hurtful interview. I believe that

        • L. Marie Brown says:

          what ever choices we make they are ours, I had no idea that this was the churches stance until now. I would be more than happy to give up my SSI and foodstamps if the members were willing to lovingly support me. But unfortunately I cannot trust that at this time since they must know but have not offered this to me. However I am not so prideful that I wont address this subject with my Hometeacher our first visit as he was just assigned, he is our area Mission Leader aswell. I have had bishops in the past tell me to ask other churches for help and come to them last. ironaccally, I didnt need my own churches help. I would like to add a couple of facts: 1. I live on the eastcoast.2. Out of 8 children none go to church because of torment they received at church from

          • L. Marie Brown says:

            because of my health issues as well as their race. 3. only 3 of those children receive GW to assist them through the month. would any one of you who have commented here on this page today like to step up and take on that bill until the millinium or this new world order or this law of concecration…….God be with you, and Peace be Still……God Speed your end.

        • Andrew says:

          I feel the same, Disabled and in same shoes, I hope you get some comfort in my trials. We are pretty much experiencing the same, Don’t be ashamed of the assistance if the members cant do as asked. It’s not your fault one bit or mine. I worked most of my years and was able to get SSD. I broke my back 2 times, both at work. We were not able to get assistance form church either. We were able to raise our kids and take care of our problems all while contributing.

          Andrew

  20. L. Marie Brown says:

    add on…4. neither do my children go to any church, but if asked they know that their is truth with our Gospel, but the people are not ready for them and who wants to go to a church where you are looked down upon because of your social standings or race I pray however that they never use this site to get understanding… and that they only seek the scriptures…..I think read once that it is all a matter of the Heart!

  21. Brad Whitley says:

    Two Cents from a fellow conservative traveller,

    I am not a Mormon, but I have to say this. In my life I have seen large groups become totally influenced by the world and culture around them and through cultural diffusion, disavow or change their original tenets.

    The danger is that one day, I can see many of the land’s religious bodies embrace gay marriage due to cultural pressures. What will stop this erosion is those tough old birds called conservatives!!! Keep up the good work, and as I said before, I would be a Mormon tomorrow if the Mormons I knew were as devoted as the writers here.

    The author is plain. We can’t cave in. Thank God there are those in the LDS Church that will not cave in.

  22. Marcus says:

    I don’t think conservatives will be excommunicated for upholding the doctrines of the gospel. I have been reading The Cleansing of America by W. Cleon Skousen for a while, but I haven’t finished it yet. I think it could very likely happen-that the Church and America are cleansed from wickedness by plague. There are teachings in the Book of Mormon of famines in the land because of wickedness. If you were hostle to people on welfare, your Bishop might talk to you about not being sensitive to others feelings in their trials. I don’t think it’d be worse than that. With the above comment that the Church should accept gay marriage, I think it is very possible that the Church and America WILL be cleansed if most Mormons believe that.

  23. Marcus says:

    President Hinckley prophesied at least several times in General Confrence as a prophet, seer, and revelator that we have barely scratched the surface, in regard to establishing the gospel on the earth. The prophets have testified and so has the Holy Ghost that there will not be another apostasy. If the government controled the Church and gay marriage was accepted there would be an apostasy. Of course it does look like backsliding, if many members are not living basic doctrines. I have only been reading this website for a little while, and I’m quite impressed. If you keep urging the Saints to Zion many can be educated and change.

    • Andrew T. says:

      Marcus,

      I’d be interested in the reference that there will be “no” apostasy (not questioning you, so much as being lazy and searching myself). I’m guessing your reference to the Holy Ghost testifying thus is something specifically to you?

      That said…

      Apostasy is what the church does. Every time it gets restored, it goes into apostasy – it’s part of the cycle. If you take a close read of the BoM, it’s pretty clear that the writers expected nothing different for our day (I’ll not give the references now – don’t want to deprive you of the joy of finding them yourself). Also, several prophets and 1st presidency members of this dispensation have expressed an expectation of apostasy in this dispensation.

      Note: my comments are independent of the gay marriage part…

  24. Marcus says:

    As an example of change, I had President Benson’s conservatism infused in me as a little kid. I fell away from the Church in my teens. When I started trying to live the gospel in my early twenties, I also started listening to Dennis Prager & other warmongering JFK liberals who think the American military needs to “liberate” the opressed in the world or we are not noble or even a little moral. I read a few chapters in Aproaching Zion by Hugh Nibley, and The False Gods We Worship by President Kimball. It was actually difficult for me to see that constant war with Islam is not the answer. I know others can change too. If you don’t have a lot of support it is very easy to follow the world, since it is all around us. Zion is harder to see.

  25. Marcus says:

    I forgot to say that with the dollar looking like it will go into hyper inflation soon like Argentina’s peso did 10 years ago it could humble us as a people. The Argintine peso was worth $4USD in 2001. Now it’s about 4 1/2 pesos to $1USD. Unless the dollar has fallen more. Fernando FerFal Aguirre of the modernsurvivalist.com said you don’t want to go to the grocery store because your scared of how expensive the food is. Though you could say more Saints would go to the gov. but the gov. won’t be able to do as much. Then the Saints will have to repent. Or maybe they will be swept off the land? The righteous are not excommunicated for living the commandments.

  26. Rusty says:

    Interesting article. For one thing, I can see that the changes in church manuals may have happened more recently because of the size of the church. Even back in the ’50s and ’60s, the church membership could support those in need. I’d have to do some research to see how many members went on the “dole” during the depression. But now, if every member that was unemployed refused unemployment/welfare/social security, there is no way the church could support all of them. But members do need to be aware that the sifting is happening…there will come a time when we will have to chose – stand for liberty and the gospel, or exchange freedom for servitude and security (false security). It will split the church in two. It’s coming, and soon I think.

  27. Rusty,

    D&C 134:4 talks about those who let their religious opinions prompt them to infringe upon the rights and liberties of others. Do you REALLY think God approves of that?

    Even if some judge requires all clergy who perform legal marriages to perform SSM ceremonies, 3 things would happen…ALL churches would tie it up in court until it was thrown out, ALL churches would push a constitutional amendment to overturn it and 3, as a last resort, the Church would not register temple sealers or clergy with the state so that no church leader could perform a legal marriage. LDS couples would have to be married at City Hall and THEN go to the temple. Gays couldn’t sue to access the temple. Most countries don’t recognize temple sealings so we’d be the same.

    • Andrew T. says:

      Kevin, Personally – think govt has no business in the marriage business and should get out all together.

      That said.. not sure I can agree with all your assmpmtns of the future – particularly w/ your ALL statements. Many churches already do SSMs and wouldn’t behave as you state. Also, believe the state will begin to pressure religions to support SSM.

      Also, may not be too far that employment is tied to supporting SSM. E.g., I worked for GM. Had to SIGN a “diversity” pledge. At time, I cld reason my way thrgh the language to sign. However, the language changed, became stronger, every year. Could see a point where I couldn’t sign pledge.

      Would love that you were right. Not convinced. If Church’s fear is pressure to change position – fear doesn’t seem unreasonable.

  28. Rusty,

    Please visit our website lds4gaymarriage.x90x.net. It explains the whole issue is great detail. We LDS violated the scriptures in supporting CA’s prop. 8. There is NO way to defend our supporting it.

    Please let me know how/where we are wrong and email us and let us know. We would L-O-V-E to hear from you.

    When one builds their house on the rock of scripture, they are on safe ground. Relying on the arm of flesh and ignoring the scriptures makes you the one on sandy soil.

  29. Erie Walker says:

    Nowhere in the teachings of Christ will you find any encouragement of one group forcing their opinion of what is right on another group. That is basic to free agency.

  30. Commissioner says:

    Hey kevin,
    probably too late to post something you’ll see, but i figured i’d try.

    1. Force (except in defense of fundamental God-given rights) is not only wrong, it’s without support in our founding documents. The DOI limits government authority to the realm of individual action…gov can only do that which an individual sovereign has the right to do…iow, you can only give your government authority to do that which u already have the right to do (defend ur own natural rights). The DOI defines this as “just” authority.
    2. Gay marriage is not a fundamental right…no one has a fundamental right to force government recognition of their union. Gays have a fundamental right to association, not to government sanction of the association.

  31. Jan says:

    DIVORCE: if it is wrong, then I’m now celestially barred from heaven……..for if I would not have been able to get out of an verbally abusive marriage, also my husband cheating on me…….I would have never met the most wonderful priesthood holder that came into my life later. I had my sealing broken from abusive man and was sealed to my dear husband that loves me. So, if divorce is not right/good, then I’d still be with a husband that cheated and was verbally abusive.

  32. Jan says:

    following the scriptures / on the gay issue:
    Leviticus 18:22
    1 Corinthians 6:9
    Jude 1:7
    2 Nephi 13:9

  33. Robin Hood says:

    I think the author of this article has to realise that the majority of church members are not citizens of the US. The US constitution means very little to us as we have our own constitution. I would be very concerned if the GA’s spoke a lot about the US constitution.

  34. Byron says:

    I found this article very interesting. The general authorities are right that Satan’s fraud undermines freedom. I am currently on food stamps because government “welfare” led to me losing about $300,000. I would give up foodstamps in a heartbeat if we could abolish the welfare state and the government would allow us to keep what we make. I also don’t rejoice in the giver because I consider my food stamps a tax refund. From my perspective government “welfare” is about undermining freedom by buying votes which is why I don’t vote for candidates who support the welfare state. I find it doubtful that the church would change its position on principles of freedom but I plan to stick with the general authorities regardless of what happens or my personal beliefs.

  35. Daniel says:

    Thanks for the article. I read it and all the comments, and will follow up with a couple more links. It was particularly interesting to see the post about reining in Pres. Benson. As I recall there was once a council of fifty involved with the “kingdom of God” as a political activity to bring forth the “Kingdom of Heaven”, or “Zion”. Man’s freedom has always been under assault, and quickly disappears when taken for granted. It is most interesting to compare the American Revolution with the French a few years later. It is easy to believe that God raised up righteous men to establish this nation, as opposed to the godless bloodbath that engulfed the country of France. It appears to me that this once great nation is very close to being French toast.

  36. Alan says:

    Joining this subject quite late: only just come across this article.
    I think one reason the Brethren don’t talk much about freedom, and especially the US Constitution, is that this is a worldwide church, with most LDS living outside of the USA. I am English and to be honest, talk of the US constitution has no relevance to me at all. I’m not interested. However, I am interested in what the brethren have to say to me about living the gospel where I am, or as Pres. Uchtdorf saod “lifting where we stand”.

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      Though I sympathize, I disagree (and not because I live in the US). The scriptures specifically talk about the US Constitution in the Book of Mormon, and in the D&C. President Benson, as President of the Church said the topic was for a “world wide Church”. The Lord has seen fit to focus on these topics, loving all of His children, perhaps we should too.

  37. I like much of what is in the article, but do find fault with one part, namely the line “Compulsion and slavery are Satan’s alternative to the Savior’s program…”

    Perhaps I’m in error, but I would challenge anyone to show where the scriptures or the Brethren have ever taught that Satan’s plan was to compel or force anyone to do anything.

  38. jeri mork says:

    Ezra I believe many people have selective hearing. And many are waiting to be told to do. But that is not how the Lord works. We know what the principles of freedom are, we have the Prophets words on the importance of the Constitution and Freedom. We are suppose to do things of our own free will, using the brains we have been given. The Lord will not tell us do 1 2 3, Joseph Smith said when asked how he led his followers “I teach them correct principles and they manage themselves” In the last conference the leaders did not come out in exact words against homosexual marriage, but if you listened you know they counseled us about that several times in the conference, about fidelity, the purpose of marriage and God’s design. thank you for your insights. jeri

  39. Francis says:

    Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are not judged by their political beliefs. Glen Beck and Harry Reid are both members in good standing (so far). We will be judged by out personal righteousness and obedience to the principles of the gospel. We sustain our authorities every 6 months as seers. Do we then have reason to question Church policies and doctrines as being driven by public opinion? Who do you think is in charge of Christ’s church?

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      D&C 134:1 says we are held accountable by God for our actions in relation to government, so you’re wrong there. It is Christ’s Church, not sure what that has to do with the article though. Please help me understand the point of your question.

  40. Mitch says:

    Now you can take on the equal protection issue. which is, does society discriminate against any man marrying any woman? When blacks could not marry whites, that was an equal protection violation, because it was a man not allowed to marry a woman. But gays cannot argue that society is failing to apply the existing licensing criteria equally…they want to force a change in the licensing criteria.

    At that point, they, and you (it seems) erroneously claim “fundamental right” as justification for changing the criteria. they say, “you are violating equal protection because you are denying us a fundamental right”. But, as stated earlier, the issuance of state licenses are NOT fundamental rights.

  41. Mitch says:

    Response to Kevin Kirkham saying repeatedly that gays have pre-existing right to a government issued marriage license and therefore, the LDS church and people violated their rights and official doctrine when supporting prop 8. I’ve heard people everywhere throw around the term of “fundamental rights” or “human rights” in association with gay marriage. But it’s a false argument that needs to be addressed. Kevin confuses “fundamental rights” and “equal protection”

    1. Fundamental rights: aka god-given, inherent, natural, human…these are rights that exist by virtue of being born. These rights exists separate from government. These do not require government recognition or creation–they exist separate and apart from any law.

  42. Mitch says:

    The most basic or fundamental of these is simply the right to be left alone–to live your own life and make your own decisions and follow your own conscience and associate with whomever you choose. The DOI named these as Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of Happiness. IOW, these are the natural extension of living in a world with NO government intrusion–an absence of force and compulsion.

    Fundamental rights don’t require any outside involvement to exercise. If I want to eat a certain food, associate with a certain person, believe a certain thing…these are fundamental…they are inherent within me (and you and everyone). These rights stand in stark opposition to the so called Second Bill of Rights that FDR championed.

  43. Mitch says:

    Each of those “rights” require an outside force to bring into being. They are NOT fundamental, inherent, or god-given. They are government granted. One example is healthcare. FDR and many others claim that healthcare is a fundamental right. By simple logic and definition, it’s obvious that healthcare cannot be a fundamental, inherent, god-given right. You cannot exercise this so called right on your own. You have to enlist the force of government to take $$ from someone else and give it to another before you can exercise this “right”. But true fundamental rights (life, liberty and pursuit of happiness–association, self-defense, following dictates of conscience, etc) all of these rights can be exercised by the person without government force.

    • Kevin Kirkham says:

      Mitch
      Response to Kevin Kirkham saying repeatedly that gays have pre-existing right to a government issued marriage license and therefore, the LDS church and people violated their rights and official doctrine when supporting prop 8.

      KJK
      Mitch, the scriptures talk about people’s FREEDOMS being limited the by consciences of others (1 Cor. 10:29) and condemns those who let their religious opinions justify limiting the rights and liberties of others (D&C 134:4). these rights/liberties/freedoms don’t need to be God given fundamental rights. The scriptures are clear that using religion to justify infringing upon manmade rights are contrary to the gospel. Infringing upon consitutional rights (equal protwction) is likewise condemned as evil in the D&C.

  44. Mitch says:

    The fundamental right of association cannot be abridged by government. We all have a natural right to associate with those we choose and government force should never be used to compel a person in either direction.

    2. Equal Protection: this argument applies only to government created privileges, “rights”, licenses etc. This argument does NOT apply to natural or fundamental rights–those are exercisable without any government involvement–iow equal protection never applies to fundamental rights…they don’t need government authority because they are inherent. If the state violates a fundamental, inherent right, the correct argument is “they have violated a fundamental right” period, nothing more. That argument is sufficient.

  45. Mitch says:

    If a right is fundamental, then the state cannot justly abridge that right. But government created licenses and privileges don’t exist until the state says so. And when the state passes such a law or license, THEN it must be applied equally. IOW, if government creates criteria for a license, it must apply that criteria evenly without discrimination.

    So, the mere fact that you are relying on an equal protection argument in support of your claim that a marriage license is a fundamental right is conclusive evidence that the underlying “right” is NOT fundamental, but rather a government created privilege or license.

  46. Mitch says:

    If it were a fundamental right, all you would need to exercise it is get the government out of the way and the fundamental nature o f the right becomes evident. But the fact, you need or want government force involved is again conclusive proof that a marriage license is a state created privilege or license.

    In this case, “marriage” is a government issued license. There is no such thing as a god-given right to a state issued license. However, once society (legislatures) create criteria for a license, the state must apply that criteria evenly to everyone.

  47. Mitch says:

    If the state (the people) decide that the criteria for a state issued marriage license shall be one man and one woman–then it must apply that criteria to all. When blacks and whites were denied marriage licenses back in the 60′s, that was an equal protection violation. However, gays want to change the criteria. They want to use courts to force the law to change so that two men or two women can get a state issued license. However, there is no fundamental right to such a license and the prior law (one man and one woman) was equally applied, so there is no equal protection argument. The sole and proper recourse for gays if they want to change this law is the legislature.

  48. Mitch says:

    Neither gays nor LDS nor any other group has a fundamental god-given right to force society to accept, recognize, condone their concept of marriage. On the other hand, society does not have the right to criminalize either gay’s or LDS or any one else’s relationships because we all have a fundamental right to associate how we choose.

  49. Kevin Kirkham says:

    Mitch
    ..when the state passes such a law or license, THEN it must be applied equally. IOW, if government creates criteria for a license, it must apply that criteria evenly without discrimination.

    So, the mere fact that you are relying on an equal protection argument in support of your claim that a marriage license is a fundamental right is conclusive evidence that the underlying “right” is NOT fundamental, but rather a government created privilege or license.

    KJK
    I’m not saying that it is a fundamental right, only that the criteria must likewise be equal. Laws forbidding blacks from marrying whites affected both equally but were not objectively justifiable. the same applies with SSM restrictions. There are no objective/secular justifications of such bans.

  50. Kevin Kirkham says:

    Mitch
    When blacks and whites were denied marriage licenses back in the 60′s, that was an equal protection violation. … However, there is no fundamental right to such a license and the prior law (one man and one woman) was equally applied, so there is no equal protection argument. The sole and proper recourse for gays if they want to change this law is the legislature.

    KJK
    Denying marriage licenses to mixed raced couples or Same-sex couples denies equal protection since both are done to forward subjective morality and have no secular/objective justification. Regarding mixed-race couples, how is their claim of Equal Protection violated but not Same-sex couples? Both groups face(d) subjective restrictions to marriage not based on any objective reasons.

  51. Try First says:

    Idiocy. Moral standards are hard, anyone demanding ‘equal rights’ for marriage may must buy two male or female chickens and then see how many eggs there are to eat. No procreation no gain. They die out. Know any farmers who can inseminate a chicken and get eggs?
    Next Welfare of any form used too long make anyone lazy. Ask any drug addict if they use the same dose they started on. Well? No, same with welfare. Try it. If you argue against this you have not given enough to the poor only to see it wasted and abused. It is simply used now to dummy down people who don’t care to look forward and buy votes. Yes a certain few require cradle to grave help. But 10 mill on disability plus 40 mill more on food stamps and more programs? Someone cant handle the truth

  52. Andrew says:

    I served a mission, and do my best to follow the commandments. I am not perfect, I make mistakes. I was kicked out of home due to church abuse. I later went on a mission myself. When I returned I was abused again. I have a firm testimony. I broke my spine when I was 23, No member of the church or my family ever assisted us. I was able to get welfare and go to University and get a degree and raise 2 wonderful kids. In 05 I was working in the data center and re-broke my spine, Pars defect. Again no, no home teachers, no one from the church assisted us, Liquidate my 401, severance, stocks etc waiting for help. i was placed back on SSD. This is a blessing to our family, we are able to rebuild our lives. How do I get of SSD ? it’s welfare right ?

  53. Try First says:

    I believe we all know deep inside that SSD or any other help when correctly applied is the correct path. Some may require it for a lifetime others only temporarily. It is when one becomes able to work and chooses to claim you cannot. When one decides to sit home and do what you want to do, when you want to do it, the way you want to – they have fallen to the state and low level of the natural man. One who is selfish, non-contributory and places his burdens on the backs of others rather then trying his best to provide and be of service to others with his excess. Do feel of worth and do try your best to take care of your own affairs. No one can do any more.

  54. I just wanted to make the comment about Prop 8. The Church has actually said “The Church has advocated for rights for same-sex couples regarding hospitalization and medical care, fair housing and employment rights, or probate rights, so long as these do not infringe on the integrity of the traditional family or the constitutional rights of churches.”

    I don’t pretend to all the ins-and-outs in Proposition or any proposed legislation. But if the Church stance is the quote above, it sounds like the Church is for civil unions. I believe the Church has enough doctrine to support the Libertarian approach. If those in the GOP apostasize and fall into the Tea Party/Libertarian Party, I see that as a plus for all!

    • Kevin JK says:

      I don’t believe that is the Church’s position. They opposed Civil Unions in Vermont and elsewhere. Regarding prop.8, 1 Cor. 10:29 & D&C 134:4 denounce those who let their religious opinions prompt them to infringe upon the rights and liberties of others. If our meddling “infringe(d) upon the rights and liberties of others”, then we were in violation of scripture because it was based on our religious opinions regarding marriage and homosexuality.

      We lost 10s of thousands of converts due to the prop.8 fight…just read the convert totals from the conference reports to verify this. The Church’s position hasn’t changed…it just doesn’t want to poke the bear again after getting mauled before.

      The scriptures and temple teach that the gospel is libertarian.

  55. James Foy says:

    The Constution is the supreme law of the land. Any law that adds to or take away is unconstitutional. We have a right to life, liberty and the pursute of happiness. Marrage is a religious service not a government act. Poligamny, same sex marriage and marriage between a man and a women is a right os life and happiness. The governement can not change a right and make it a privelage and charge a fee for it.
    It was wrong for the Church to let the government to control us. We should have continued to fight for our right when the government tried to take our rights away concerning plural marriage. Now we have to give in again and argue about who should marry who. That is the wrong fight. We need to fight for rights as stated in the Constitution. We now marry so we have IRS

  56. The Fox says:

    Ezra…Great article. Lot’s of good quotes! However I have to say we need to be careful of leading people down in their testimonies instead of up. 1. There are many justifiable reasons why the Church has to carefully phrase what it says, and can sometimes appear to oppose true principles. Pres. Hinkley said something to the effect that, “…we have to be very careful what we say! Our enemies are watching us closely and seek to trip us up for our words…” We have been told there isn’t enough time left for this current Church of Jesus Christ to apostatize. So even though some Church members/leaders oppose true principles, they are the ones who will soon be cleansed out of the Church – not those who stand for correct principles…

  57. The Fox says:

    The awesome Prophet Ezra Taft Benson, on several occasions, said, “A great cleansing is coming to this Church…and I look forward to that cleansing!” He went on to remark that the persons cleansed would be those members and leaders who are in opposition to the Lord’s work and teachings. But to emphasize the false teachings by some members/leaders is to sway those with weak testimonies to increase their doubts about the Church. It’s ok to notice the subtle apostacy going on in the Church but we must be VERY careful to not talk about it in a way we drag down weak member’s testimonies. There will continue to be false doctrine taught and spoken by members/leaders of this Church till the Lord decides enough is enough and He cleanses His Church of those people.

  58. The Fox says:

    We have been assured by Prophets this Church will be here all the way to the Millennium intact. So we will be standing up for freedom all the way through to then. Remember the Lord’s Church is currently ~50% wheat and ~50% tares at this point. That’s a membership problem – it’s not the Church. The Church still stands for freedom (though it is too dangerous under the current U.S. Fascist government to be too very vocal about it! The tares in the Church would cause us to lose at this point a battle against the Fascist U.S. government!)

    • Andrew T says:

      Sure, the Church will “be here.” However, Jesus (3 N 16) assures us that it will be in apostasy. Don’t expect the Church to stand for freedom. It’s up to you and me.

      • Sharon says:

        Is it possible that the “church” cannot fight for freedom so as to keep its “standing” with the government that allows the individual members to continue in their spiritual growth and ordinances etc? That doesn’t necessarily mean that the prophet and GA’s are apostate but confounded by the Lord to keep temple doors etc open? I’m struggling to know where exactly the “church” is apostate and not referring to the majority of the individuals making up the body of the church. I hope I’m making sense here. From my understanding, it has ALWAYS been taught that it would be the individual members fighting for freedom and not the “church” as an organization.

        • Andrew T says:

          Sharon, I agree with the last part. It’s up to us – not the “Church.” However, isn’t it just a bit troubling that the state dictates which truths the Church teaches? Other churches aren’t intimidated so. Why is the LDS Church?

          • Sharon says:

            Of course it is troubling, thus the proof that we are losing our rights as prophesied. As for other churches not being intimidated, can we remember that they do NOT have a living prophet guiding them? My question of the possibility that the Lord Himself has directed our prophets to say what they say, stands.

          • Andrew T says:

            Sharon, you may be right. Maybe the Lord has told the prophet to stand down on this one. However, since the Church hasn’t published that revelation, we really don’t know… Again, you may be right…

          • The Fox says:

            Not true Andrew…
            All of the Churches that have a 503-c tax exemption have been silenced by the Feds on political matters. Those who have dared to breach that silencing have been shut down – both here and in Canada.

          • Andrew T says:

            Not True The Fox. The Catholic church will speak out against war. Plenty of pastors in local churches also will do so – and have not been shut down (I acknowledge your point though – speaking out against the state does have consequences).

        • The Fox says:

          Sharon…
          You are correct. The Church cannot take on the fight right now because many of the individual members are slackers and cowards and not really converted members. Remember when the Lord told Joseph Smith (In the D&C) to get Him 400 armed men and He would go before them, fight their battles and redeem Zion? Well only 200 men showed up and 1/2 of them were cowards so we lost Zion. That wasn’t a Church issue it was the individual members who let the Lord down.

  59. The Fox says:

    I feel I also need to address the side topic discussed in this post – that of ‘gay marriage’.
    The topic of ‘gay marriage’ is a moot argument for there is NO such thing as ‘gay marriage’. We have all been suckered into the debate about this by the subtle mis-definition of marriage. We have been led to believe marriage is a contract with a governmental state! It is NOT! Marriage is a ‘covenant’ not a ‘civil contract’. If we look at the very first marriage it was performed by God Himself. It involved a covenant between Adam, Eve and God! All marriages throughout the ages were considered a ‘sacrament’ of the Church in those days. All through the ages people would go to the Church of the day and the Priest would perform the sacrament of marriage.

  60. The Fox says:

    The state had no part of the marriage ceremony. It’s only in our perverse day that ‘marriage’ was hijacked by the state for the legal issues pertaining to it – and that is wrong. The Lord in D&C 132 clearly states that any, “…covenants, contracts, oaths, vows, etc…” that are not sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise (and God) are of no effect – they don’t exist eventually. And since God would NEVER seal two men as ‘man and wife’ (which they actually cannot be a wife) then there really is NO such thing as gay marriage. Just because two men want to live together and sodomize each other does NOT constitute marriage! Only God can seal in a marriage and He will only do that with a man and a woman. It’s really that simple. So let’s drop this moot argument!

  61. Pingback: Audio Article: The Coming Apostasy of Latter-day Conservatives | Mormon Chronicle

  62. James Stevens says:

    I think many of you have forgotten the simple thruths. So let’s start simple it is written that the profit will not lead us astray or teach false doctrine. Remember we are subject to the laws of the land (remember your articles of faith). We are led by men of GOD Yes we are to pray and ask for guidance. But to think you know better than a leader of the church who has been given the keys to receive revelation regarding the direction of the church is the hight of arrogance. We are given free agency which means we have the right to make up our own minds but that doesn’t mean we don’t have to reap the outcome of those decisions. The article brings up some great points but as a faithful LDS member I have to believe the leaders will do what is right..

    • Ezra Taylor says:

      1. When did this article say the prophet would lead anyone astray?
      2. Your interpretation of the “law of the land” is not inline with the scriptures or modern day prophets. See here http://www.mormonchronicle.com/sacred-cow-7-the-church-is-the-kingdom-of-god/
      3. When did this article claim to know better than anyone with keys?

    • kevin jk says:

      HBL and JFieldingS both said that if they ever teach anything contrary to scripture, scripture prevails. They knew that they were mortal men subject to error. The prophets screw up sometimes. 30yrs. ago men went on 18 mo. missions. That was abandoned after it failed miserably. At that same time, the 1st presidency issued a statement saying oral sex was a violation of temple covenants. That too was quickly withdrawn. Few members under 50 even knew that happened. If that really is a violation of covenants, why aren’t kids going to the temple told that? Is it better for them to ignorantly violate their covenants. The prophets have also objectively misinterpreted scripture.

      The bottom line is that they can goof up and we must adhere to scripture.

    • Andrew T says:

      James:

      The BoM clearly teaches that the LDS Church will go into apostasy. Study and ponder 3 Nephi 16, 20, and 21. Also, Mormon 8. Actually, once you figure this out, you recognize the entire book is one running prophecy/warning to us about apostasy.

      YOU have the right and responsibility to receive revelation for the path you should take. God does not want the profit [sic] or Church between him and you (D&C 84:21–25). As a faithful LDS member, your faith should be in Christ, not in men [leaders] (yep, that’s a form of idolatry). If men [leaders] point you to Christ and encourage you to know him, then good. If they are telling you you should follow a man, start to get worried, very worried.

      • Ezra Taylor says:

        while it is true that the Book of Mormon is a running prophecy and warning to us the rest of your comment is debunked by the Lord in the Doctrine and Covenants http://ezrataylormc.blogspot.com/2013/10/sacred-cow-11-no-man-gets-between-me-god.html?m=1

        • Andrew T says:

          You have the sacred cow backwards. Next fast and test. meeting, get up and say, “I follow the prophet and look to him for guidance.” See how that statement is received. Then, the next one stand and say, “No man gets between me and god.” See how that statement is received. Then you’ll know which is the sacred cow.

          And the rest of my statement isn’t true? Wow. You believe you don’t have the right and responsibility to receive revelation for your path? Your faith shouldn’t be in Christ, but someone else? D&C 84:21–25 is bunk? Whatever…

          • Ezra Taylor says:

            Wow! You believe that having a prophet means you can’t personal revelation. Either or statements such as yours are ridiculous on their face and classic logical fallacies that lewd to such ridiculous conclusions as you’ve made.

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