The objective of the scriptures is not about commanding in all things. It is to place the mind of Christ in us. When the mind of Christ is in us, that is when the words of Christ is written upon our hearts. Once they are written upon our hearts, …then the words of Christ will tell you all things what you should do.
My mom and I often go head to head concerning the topics on this blog, …and I love it! In our conversations (as of this morning), I often get thrown into the category of “heretic” because what I say is seen “generally,” and not “specifically.” This time, I was perceived as speaking against the prophet. My mom bore her testimony about the truth of the prophet, Thomas S. Monson, three times throughout the conversation.
We both agreed that the church was set up as God’s church, with Joseph Smith as the original prophet. We both understand that if this is God’s church, …then His church ought to align with His words (scripture). Where I get thrown under the bus is, when I identify misalignment between the words of Christ and the LDS church. This is where my entire family pulls back and asks me, “Who are you, …and what have you done with our brother?”
The scriptures were preserved for hundreds of years, men died to bring them forth, great sacrifice was offered to record and hide them up, …so that we might use them as a de-coder, …so that we could be given the power to identify false traditions, to not let them get into our families/ congregations/ church. When the saints know the scriptures (in detail), they can identify, and protect against, wolves in Sheep’s clothing and false traditions. But, “generally speaking,” the membership of the church have not done their part to know the scriptures. That is not my judgement, but the judgement of both Joseph Smith (182 years ago) and Ezra Taft Benson (General Conf. 1989). Because of our condemnation, wolves have crept in, and false traditions are currently drowning out the truth.
Wolves, like bishops and stake presidents who’ve broken sacred trusts, church administrators lining their pockets, church investors who deal in shady business practices of nepotism, and school presidents who make wasteful, foolish and bias choices with sacred funds, …these are wolves who have entered into our fold. False traditions, like follow the prophet, faith is like a little seed, modern prophets are better than dead prophets, follow the leader, do as I’m doing, church manuals are more accurate than scripture, etc. …these are a small few of the false traditions that have been made “foundational doctrines” in our church. They are unbelief. The presence of wolves and false traditions of unbelief are directly connected to our 182 year old condemnation: you have treated lightly the things you have received, and are resting the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon, and the other commandments, …not to read them (D&C 84:54-55).
The Lord refuses to command in all things. The scriptures are there to help give you the mind of the Lord. When you have His mind, he doesn’t need to tell you what to do, because you already know what to do. When the words of Christ are written upon your heart, then the words of Christ, inside of you, becomes your mind and will, …and they will tell you all things what you should do (2 Nephi 32:3).
Conclusion: I am not judging the righteousness of the prophet, …frankly, I think he’s a good guy, and I don’t really care about how righteous he is. His righteousness doesn’t have a thing to do with my salvation. It doesn’t matter WHO the prophet is, only WHAT he says.
None of the scriptures ever instruct us to follow the prophet. They tell us to …follow Christ! Whenever the prophet is mentioned, we are instructed only to “receive” the prophet, or to “harken” to the prophet. The latter advises us to listen, …but we are also require us …to discern the content of the message. That is why we are given the words of Christ, and are invited to write them upon our hearts. Our failure to have the words of Christ written upon our hearts will inevitably impact (for good or bad) who we choose to harken unto, as a prophet:
“25. And now when ye talk, ye say: If our days had been in the days of our fathers of old, we would not have slain the prophets; we would not have stoned them, and cast them out.
26. Behold ye are worse than they; for as the Lord liveth, if a prophet come among you and declareth unto you the word of the Lord, which testifieth of your sins and iniquities, ye are angry with him, and cast him out and seek all manner of ways to destroy him; yea, you will say that he is a false prophet, and that he is a sinner, and of the devil, because he testifieth that your deeds are evil.
27. But behold, if a man shall come among you and shall say: Do this, and there is no iniquity; do that and ye shall not suffer; yea, he will say: Walk after the pride of your own hearts; yea, walk after the pride of your eyes, and do whatsoever your heart desireth—and if a man shall come among you and say this, ye will receive him, and say that he is a prophet.
28. Yea, ye will lift him up, and ye will give unto him of your substance; ye will give unto him of your gold, and of your silver, and ye will clothe him with costly apparel; and because he speaketh flattering words unto you, and he saith that all is well, then ye will not find fault with him.
29. O ye wicked and ye perverse generation; ye hardened and ye stiffnecked people, how long will ye suppose that the Lord will suffer you? Yea, how long will ye suffer yourselves to be led by foolish and blind guides? Yea, how long will ye choose darkness rather than light?”
The power of writing the words of Christ upon your heart provides all the ability to truly identify the message of a prophet. As shown above, men in the past have chosen to label prophets differently. It is no different in our day. How you label a prophet will effect who you trust, God or man. How you write the words of Christ upon your heart will dictate your choice. Receive the words of men who are called prophets, see their words through the words of Christ, remove the foolish traditions of unbelief, and then …FOLLOW CHRIST!