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Monday, November 28, 2011

October 2011 Conference Issue: Thomas Monson

Color Key:
Quotes from Thomas Monson in blue.
Quotes from the Bible in red.
All my own words are black.


Stand in Holy Places
By Connie Raddon

The November 2011 Ensign is entirely dedicated to the messages that were given in the October 2011 sessions of General Conference.  The leadership of the LDS Church give talks on different subjects that they feel the general LDS population needs to hear.  I would like to focus on what their prophet, Thomas S. Monson had to say in his talk entitled, “Stand in Holy Places”.


The article begins by explaining the moral decay that is going on in society today.  He says that “Behaviors which once were considered inappropriate and immoral are now not only tolerated but also viewed by ever so many as acceptable.”

The Bible also tells of societies which fell into moral decay – Genesis 18 and 19 tell of the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah.  In the book of Judges, the Israelites “did what was right in their own eyes” and were told by God how unrighteous they were.

Both the LDS Church and the Bible point out that immoral behavior and wickedness exist.  Monson, however, turns away from Biblical teachings when he explains that righteous “moral behavior” comes by way of us taking control of our lives, controlling our behavior and our environment.

“…there is nothing which can bring more joy into our lives or more peace to our souls than the Spirit which can come to us as we follow the Savior and keep the commandmentsThat Spirit cannot be present at the kinds of activities in which so much of the world participates.”

The Bible teaches that once the Holy Spirit dwells in us, He will never leave.  He is not limited to being present only when we are at the right kinds of activities.

John 14:16:  “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever.” 

These were the words of Jesus.  He also said, (Matt.28:20) “…and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

“The apostle Paul declared the truth: ‘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.’  The term natural man can refer to any of us if we allow ourselves to be so.”
We are all “natural man” until we accept Christ’s righteousness in substitute of our own and turn our lives over to Him.  Then the Holy Spirit moves in permanently and changes us.

2 Corinthians 5:17-18  “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.  Now all things are of God…”

God changes us.  We cannot take any credit.  We don’t have the power to “allow ourselves” to flip flop between having the Holy Spirit in us and not; between being a “natural man” and being a “spiritual man”.  That power is God’s alone.


ETERNAL LIFE:

The Bible teaches that eternal life in the kingdom of God is not ours to surrender – it is a gift from God. 
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

John 3:36 “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life;…”

God’s grace is what gives us eternal life in the kingdom of God.  He gives that freely as a gift to those who believe. 

But Monson claims that moral behavior is necessary for eternal life in the kingdom of God.
“We must be vigilant in a world which has moved so far from that which is spiritual.  It is essential that we reject anything that does not conform to our standards, refusing in the process to surrender that which we desire most: eternal life in the kingdom of God.”


Monson’s teachings are NOT Biblical, and therefore, NOT consistent with Christian beliefs.

  

On May 18, 1873 (as recorded in the Journal of Discourses, Vol. 16 p. 46), Brigham Young issued a challenge:  “Take up the Bible, compare the religion of the Latter Day Saints with it, and see if it will stand the test.”

I have accepted that challenge from Brigham Young.

In the November 2011 issue of the Ensign, the LDS religion FAILS this test.


I sincerely thank my research partner, Art Haglund.