I don't get online much. I don't have Internet right now. I do check on things with my phone, but it's a big hassle because my phone has decided it doesn't like the Internet much. So, here I sit at the library, wanting to say something profound. Either bear with me or jump ship now. <grin>
I warn you that this is a very rough draft and may make very little sense.
I've read a lot of threads on my favorite forum that are talking about people who are being called in by their bishops. Some of these seem to have been instigated from the Saving the Saints Committee. (I have a difficult time remembering their name. Torturing the Saints, Spying on the Saints, Protecting the Saints. There is a real name out there somewhere.) Some are being called in because a friend or relative tattled on them to the bishop. Sometimes the person him/herself was very honest when they spoke to a bishop, and the bishop figured their concerns or interpretation of the "word of wisdom" was a sin.
I halfway wonder why my turn isn't coming up. Am I not obnoxious enough (or honest enough) on the Internet? Perhaps I've not posted enough lately. Perhaps it is because I have moved recently and the spies don't know where to find me.
Let me be very plain here:
1 - I believe the current doctrine of "Follow the prophet; he cannot lead you astray," to be a doctrine of devils. I came by that opinion because D&C 76 said that those who dwell in the telestial kingdom (which it says is hell) contain those who follow prophets (whether "true" or not), but who failed to do something important. I'll let you have the joy of searching the scriptures for yourself. You've got the section number. That's all you need. That, and an open mind connected to God.
2 - I believe that the current doctrine of the poor giving to the church even if it means they go hungry, naked, are kicked out for not paying rent, and so forth is a doctrine of devils - and the poor giving to the rich is preached against in several places in the Book of Mormon (the Isaiah verses are a good place to go. Mormon 8. Or you can just read the book, looking for where it is warning us, the latter-day saints/Gentiles about our wickedness and how we have polluted the holy church of God).
Some people in third world countries cannot afford to pay money to the church, some of them suffer so much so they can give - and for what? So that the Brethren can have a new Avalon every year or two? So they can write on cotton rag paper instead of on ordinary paper like the rest of us? So they can throw a big birthday bash or eat expensive lunches at work (COB) that lesser mortals working there are not allowed to eat? So that the church can build malls, buy up Florida and church history lands, keep up their expensive hunting retreats?
3 - I fear a hierarchy that cannot recognize the voice of the Good Shepherd, Him who they profess to follow - Him who they pretend to claim to have seen (in flowery language that they have to know the masses will take as, "He saw Him!!!!" when, it reality, it is language that does not come out and plainly say, "I know He lives, for I saw Him. I touched Him. And this is what He said ...") when He speaks through a servant of His own choosing.
I say "fear" because a group of men who profess to know the Lord, who profess to have His power and authority and to hold His keys who cannot recognize Him whom they profess to serve, even to the point of casting out that servant He has sent, are dangerous indeed to those whom they teach the mantra of, "Follow the Prophet. Follow the Brethren. We cannot lead you astray. It is impossible."
4 - I believe we are meant to be redeemed from the fall in this life. I believe we are meant to return to the Lord's presence here. I believe that Joseph never intended to restore an institutional organization. I believe Joseph gave in to the demands of men, who wanted a New Testament church (as they supposed it to be).
5 - I believe that the cursing in the D&C was never lifted. I believe that when we lost the fullness, it was never given again. I believe the fullness is to see the face of Christ and receive Him as the Second Comforter. I believe that we (the pioneers - I say "we" because their blood flows in my veins) did not finish the Nauvoo temple in a timely manner. The proof is in the fact that we were scattered and driven, and suffered horribly, and went after false doctrines (perversions of what Joseph had been attempting to teach).
6 - I believe there is hope for us yet. I believe that Jesus Christ is, right now, holding His hand out to us, begging us to listen to Him, to hear the painful truths He is trying to tell us - through the Book of Mormon, through the servants He is raising up to tell us that all is NOT well in "Zion". I believe we Gentiles are being given one last chance. And it is the last. After that, it will revert to the Remnant, to those to whom the Book of Mormon promises it will go to after the Gentiles (us) reject the fullness of the gospel.
Next post to offset this: My testimony of Christ.