Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Leaders Fighting Amongst Themselves

I remember how I was told a story about the president of the Church snubbing a group of new members. Seems he was of a different social status than they were, and it just wasn't cool. I often wonder what those members thought. Here you have a brand new Church, a relatively new, 1st generation prophet, and constant new "convenient" revelations to sort out the differences from the Bible. And the president snubs you in public.

Then one of the members of the quorum of the twelve (or fifteen, if you count everyone who was called an apostle at the time), actually called the prophet out. This junior member of the quorum of the twelve had a reputation for being a hot head, in fact was known to be super opinionated, and even wrote things the Church had to remind everyone could be misconstrued. He routinely sounded authoritative, even as he would put in the caveat "this is my opinion". He also would routinely attack traditions people brought with them from their previously traditional accepted faiths.

The Church was accused of being filled with leaders lacking faith, lying about visitations by Jesus, and even denying the traditional beliefs about God. Oh, and the errors in the revelations, don't even get me started. They constantly received new "revelations", and then would actually edit the Bible to support their "convenient" revelations. They didn't write down their supposed eyewitness accounts for 20-50 years after the events transpired, and then they were accused of colluding on those accounts. They constantly argued over which translation had errors, and some of the leaders even speculated that Jesus was married, and they explained to be "born again" meant water baptism.

Still, when the president of the Church was confronted with his bad behavior, he admitted he was wrong privately, but never wrote or publicly admitted to correct his errors about treating people so inconsiderately. How is that for perfect leadership?

Some of you by now have probably figured out exactly who I am talking about. Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery? Maybe David Whitmer? Bruce R. McConkie? Or Brigham Young and Orson Pratt? No.

Peter and Paul.

Peter famously quotes Joel in his speech on the day of Pentecost. But he quotes a form not found in any Hebrew or Greek form. Paul free-style quotes the Old Testament constantly in his writings. The fight goes on until today whether the Majority Text tradition is correct or the Alexandrian texts, for the New Testament; and there are thousands of changes between the Masoretic text used for the King James Bible, and the Dead Sea Scrolls. The supposed "Q" source for the New Testament Gospel accounts of Jesus' life assume that Matthew and John did not actually experience and write down their own original thoughts, and that Matthew, Mark and Luke copied from some unnamed source for up to 90% of their content.

Peter and Paul of course argued about Peter being afraid to openly associate with the Gentile converts around the Jewish converts. Paul got into such an argument with Barnabus, they actually split up and went different directions. Peter wrote to warn the saints that Paul's writings were sometimes difficult to understand. Peter never admitted he had been chastised by Paul, as Paul describes it in Galatians. Justin Martyr explicitly explains that to be "born again" meant to be baptized in water.

Anti-Christians accused the Christian disciples of being atheists for not believing in the official version of deity. Everyone accused the Christians of stealing Jesus' body, or even that he did not actually die.

Those who do not study history, stupidly repeat it. New Revelation is never accepted as authentic by the majority of the population where it is received. No one, or almost no one, argues with the baptists, Presbyterians or even the street preachers to any great degree, about doctrine. They may not like their methods, but the lies of Hellenization and the Etruscan culture adapted to create the traditional "Christian" Jesus hundreds of years after Jesus and the Apostles passed on, are what made today's Christianity what it is.

The truth is, our leaders are very, very flawed people, and always have been. That has nothing to do with whether God is using the weak things, the imperfect things, to bring about the salvation of humankind. He does today what he has always done: Tells us to listen with our hearts, and at times hold our noses, and believe he still speaks to us. Change is inherent in following a living, speaking Christ.


Walker said...

Really liked this entry. I've used this as an example when talking about disagreements among the brethren, but I liked how well you structured it.

Markadrian said...

Okay two questions for you about this entry.
1. Where does Etruscan culture fit in to the modern/traditional presentation of Christianity? I thought that Etruscan culture was essentially erased by the Romans, hence the limited remains we find of their civilization today.
2. How do you discern between the revelations provided by Joseph Smith et al and those provided by Charles Taze Russell, Sun Myung Moon, or L. Ron Hubbard?

Anonymous said...

What is up with Monson? Why is the Church not telling us about his health? Anyone can see from watching GC on Sunday the guy is some shade of green? Did you see the pictures of him at the recent temple open houses? I am telling you, I think the Church is hiding that he is sick. I saw some anti on KSL said he looked like Eddy Munster's dad, and someone said his uncle. I just think he looks like guy who needs a liver transplant.

Bob the Anti-Anti said...

Etruscan culture is literally everywhere in modern Christianity, from the traditional date of Christmas, to Christmas trees and presents, to the style of some vestments worn by Roman Catholic clergy. I have some notes on this that I will have to dig up. But Christmas came from Saturnalia, the celebration of Saturn, which was the Etruscan Satres. It had a long history of celebration in Rome, which was used as a recruiting tool for pagans into Christianity.

As for Revelation, I believe we have to trust that God can confirm his revelations. The three you named never claim that a divine affirmation will come. However, books like the Koran do. In such cases, follow the procedure of Moroni 10:3-5: Study it out and compare to all the things God has revealed through the Bible. Reach a conclusion. Then ask God if it is true.

"Did not our hearts burn within us, while he talked with us by the way and while he opened to us the scriptures?" is still true today as it was after the resurrection (Luke 24:32).


Anonymous said...

Bob is a lost man trying to explain the bible. The blind leading the blind into the ditch.

1 Corinthians 2:14-15 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

Walker said...

"Bob is a lost man trying to explain the bible. The blind leading the blind into the ditch."

We will just take your approach: We've received a witness from the Spirit that the Church is true and that you are wrong. So there!

Nevermind research or studies...

lou skont said...

check this out for witness if you dare.

Walker said...

"check this out for witness if you dare"

(creepy, ominous organ music)

This is a joke, right?

Daurade said...

Walker, yes it's a joke, not meant to be malicious.