Time for another trip into the WindySydney mail bag!
A man by the username Grandpa Heston left me a couple comments that I want to reply to. Grandpa Heston's comments will be in quote blocks and italicized and my responses will be in bold letters to help keep things easier to read/understand.
Lets get started...
Your comments are interesting to me. Being obedient means that we subject our will to the Father in Heaven. No one should blindly follow the prophet or anyone else in the flesh. As for me I pray (as you said the only way that you would be obedient is if God told you himself)for an answer from God. He either confirms to me or not that what is said by anyone is from Him. So far the score is: 100% right for the prophets teaching me. For others that I trust enough to pray about the record is less favorable. YOu ought to try it with a sincere heart and see what you find.
Your comments are interesting to me, as well. I am especially interested in the comment you made about being obedient to our father in heaven and not blindly follow the prophet. First of all, there is zero proof there is a father in heaven, a space-daddy, a super fantastic club we get to hang out in after we die.
Who is it you want me to be obedient to? Because here is the thing... all scriptures are man made. The bible says shellfish is an abomination, sell your daughters into slavery... the list is endless. Should I be obedient to that God? Why or why not?
Have you ever played the telephone game? Someone whispers something in a friends ear and they keep passing the same message around the room? This is kind of how I see the bible and other religious texts. These are not God's words. These are words that men claim are God's words. So, if I am to be obedient to the God of the bible, I need to do some of these things:
-Abandon boys who are uncircumcised. Genesis 17:14
-Incest is best. Moses was the product of an incestuous marriage. Exodus 6:20
-God says it's okay for slave owners to split up slave families. Exodus 21:4
-If you "entice" an "unmarried maid" to "lie" with you, then you must marry her, unless the father refuses to give her to you, in which case you must pay him the going price for virgins. Exodus 21:16-17
-God orders Saul to kill all of the Amalekites: men, women, infants, sucklings, ox, sheep, camels, and asses. 1 Samuel 15:2-3
Believe me when I say I could go on and on. I have before. Many times. I need to obey a God that would do those horrific things? Interesting. Sorry, can't do it.
If there is a God, and He wants me to be obedient to him, then He needs to make his presence known. Mormons believe the prophets are communicating with God, and therefore they have more answers to things than other regular church members. The only way I would know what God wants from me is to what? Read scriptures that can't be trusted completely, and ...listen to and obey the prophet.
I didn't necessarily appreciate the Brigham quote. He had a great many things that he said. This is one small one that detractors use. How about quoting the rest that read a more favorably?
Oh, what quotes would thou like me to share?
There are great things?
How about his teachings that Adam was God, that there were Quaker-like men living on the moon, that anyone bearing children with someone with dark skin should be put to death immediately to save his soul?
Brigham Young had an ego the size of Texas, and by reading my copy of the Journal of Discourses I learned a lot about him. He treated women like property, he took anything he wanted, and he would publicly chastise people who openly challenged anything he said or did.
Next time I will check with you before quoting something a pretend prophet said as to not upset you. I am oh, so sorry.
Do you really think a true prophet would do the things he did?
Don't you think that if Brigham was really speaking and communicating with the Lord that God wouldn't have a few things to say about his sermons that the church now pretends don't exist? How about the Mountain Meadows Massacre? That was God's will?
Love you. Enjoy your coffee. I prayed about that too. Prophets were right. Coffee Bad! All it does is give you headaches when you don't have it and a lot of other little maladies like bad belly, the jitters etc. etc. Prayer is the soul's sincere desire. You enter Heaven through prayer.Oh, I love the coffee dig.
Yes, I stopped going to church because I wanted to drink coffee.
That has got to be one of the stupidest arguments ever proposed to me on this blog, and I have had some doozies.
You love me? Want to get married and have babies? I can cook. Only vegetarian, though... and I would like to get to know you a little better before agree to return to the church as one of your many polygamous wives that are promised to you in the afterlife. The Celestial Kingdom always sounded kind of moronic to me, as if women would be jumping at the chance to share a husband with other women and populate their own worlds with spirit children they had to carry. Sounds like hell, not heaven.
Your comment makes you seem arrogant and sarcastic. Very bad way to get people to listen to the points you are trying to make.
If prayer is the soul's sincere desire, then lets take a look at that...
How do you know anyone hears your prayers? How about instead of praying to your heavenly father for a week, you pray to a can of Spam:
The results would be the same. They would.
I forgot. I always ask this of those that have left the church. Why do you never comment on the things that you know that the church (its people) and their leaders do right? If you are truly the free thinker that you purport you are, why not put the good things that you left to balance out some of the junk that you feel is so wrong? But alas. that would require you to be honest wouldn't it?
There are many ex-Mormons reading this last paragraph, and I can garruntee that they are laughing as hard as I am.
What should I praise the church for?
I should praise the church because they go out of their way to limit the equal rights of fellow human beings who don't even belong to their church?
I should praise the church for not allowing blacks to hold the priesthood until they were forced to change that rule to keep their tax-exempt status?
I should praise the church for not giving equal rights to women?
I should praise the church for telling women that they needed to be in polygamous marriages in order to reach the celestial kingdom?
I should praise them for their dishonesty?
I should praise the church who spends millions and millions of dollars on temples, church buildings, and expensive high-rise condo complexes instead of putting that money to use in a more helpful way... like feeding the hungry... that sort of thing.
I should praise the church for not being honest to me when they taught me the stories about church history? The translation of the Book of Mormon is my favorite example...
I should praise them for these things?
I know that most of the people in the church are good people, and if you had taken any time whatsoever to read more than one article on this blog you would know that. My entire family is Mormon. I love them no matter what, even if they act like you and assume I left because I crave Starbucks.
What you don't seem to understand is that my points and concerns with the church are valid.
As for the last sentence you wrote, you are implying that I am being dishonest. If you want to make that claim, please be prepared to show evidence to prove I am lying or being dishonest in any way.
I take that for what it is, a dig, a jab, an internet "F-you!"
What you have done is use every single apologist tactic out there. Trivializing my concerns, claiming I am dishonest, and being an all-around jerk. If you want to really communicate with people honestly about their concerns over your church, try being a little more kind and understanding. You sure came off as a egotistical jerk who thinks he knows everything.
If I had a dollar for every time some jerk-wad called me a liar without offering any kind of example or evidence I would be living in my dream home, attending college full time, traveling the world, and donating to charities that show where their money goes. I would be wealthy beyond imagination, almost as wealthy as the Mormon church!
If you had read more than one lonely article on this blog, you would know that my concerns are not just with the Mormon Church. That just happens to be the religion I was born into. I believe all religion is more negative than positive. Look at what it has done to you!! I am sure that without religion you wouldn't be so quick to judge others.
If you excuse me, I have to go to the store and stock up on coffee beans.