About J. Max Wilson

J. Max Wilson is one of the founders of the Millennial Star. You can visit his personal blog at http://www.sixteensmallstones.org.

Rejecting the Living Prophets by Following Future Prophets

[Cross posted from Sixteen Small Stones]

kept-my-cupOne of the key doctrines of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is that we have living prophets and apostles today who are authorized by God to receive revelations for the church and for the world. The scriptures are full of stories of how the people of the church rejected the messages of the living prophets, often justifying themselves by appealing to the words of previous prophets. Even Jesus was rejected by appealing to Moses or Abraham.

As President of the Twelve Apostles, Ezra Taft Benson warned: “Beware of those who would set up the dead prophets against the living prophets, for the living prophets always take precedence.” (Fourteen Fundamentals in Following the Prophet, 1980)

Elder Dallin H. Oaks explained further: “…the most important difference between dead prophets and living ones is that those who are dead are not here to receive and declare the Lord’s latest words to his people. If they were, there would be no differences among the messages of the prophets.” (Our Strengths Can Become Our Downfall, 1992)

I’ve noticed a troubling parallel among some progressive members of the church: Rejecting living prophets in favor of what they anticipate future prophets will do*. Continue reading

Handbook #2 Highlights: LDS Reasons for Disabilities or Handicaps

[Cross Posted from Sixteen Small Stones]

handbook2

This is the third entry in a series of blog posts about some of the interesting and important policies of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints contained in the church’s official Handbook #2. Familiarity and compliance with LDS Church guidelines is important. For background, see the introductory post.

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Handbook #2 Highlights: Notes and Recordings of Talks and Addresses by LDS General Authorities

[Cross posted from Sixteen Small Stones]

handbook2

This is the second entry in a series of blog posts about some of the interesting and important policies of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints contained in the church’s official Handbook #2. Familiarity and compliance with LDS Church guidelines is encouraged. For background, see the introductory post.

Notes and Recordings of Talks and Addresses by General Authorities

Church members should not record the talks or addresses that General Authorities and Area Seventies give at stake conferences, missionary meetings, or other meetings. However, members may record broadcasts of general conference on home equipment for personal, noncommercial use.” (emphasis added)

Handbook 2: 21.1.33

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Handbook #2 Highlights: Recreational Hypnotism

[Cross Posted from Sixteen Small Stones]

Background

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has two handbooks that represent the church’s policies, procedures, and guidelines. While Handbook #1 is available only for Stake Presidents and Bishops in the church, Handbook #2 is meant to be a guide for members of ward and stake councils and is available to anyone.

handbook2

It is important for all members to be familiar with the content of Handbook #2, but in my experience, even among very devout and active members of the church, there are many who don’t even know the handbook is available, let alone what it says.

I have been reading through Handbook #2 and there are a number of policies and positions of the church of which I suspect many church members are not aware. This is the first in a series of blog posts in which I will highlight some of the interesting contents of the handbook.

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Mormon Monuments at the U.S. Capitol and Smithsonian in Washington D.C.

[Cross posted from Sixteen Small Stones]

Statue of Lady Freedom atop the U.S. Capitol BuildingMy family visited Washington D.C. for a vacation this October. We had a wonderful time exploring the National Monuments and Smithsonian Museums. There is so much to learn, think about, and do, and never enough time for all of it. It was also a great time to talk with our children about our country, its history, and its founding documents and principles.

I want to highlight a couple of unexpected encounters with Mormonism and LDS related ideas we had while there, with photos I took myself.

LDS visitors to Washington D.C. may be interested in going out of their way to see some of these Mormon monuments. And should Mitt Romney be successful in winning the election for President of the United States, interest in some of these may increase among those who are not members of the LDS church as well.

The U.S. Capitol Building is beautiful. The room where the House of Representatives used to meet from 1819 to 1857 is now the National Statuary Hall, where they display statues of prominent Americans. Each state of the Union is allowed to send two statues, of either bronze or marble, to be displayed at the Capitol, many in the statuary hall. Continue reading