Sunday, October 22, 2017

Heavenly Manifestation

An experience I shared on my Happy Lady facebook page on Wednesday;

"This morning I went to the temple. I almost didn’t go because I got a late start, but then decided to go to the Ogden temple and just do initiatories. I was sad because I have ancestor names filed at the Bountiful temple in our stake drawer. I really wanted to do their work. I had this feeling that all would be well. A friend of mine (with the same name 😄) just texted me right now and told me she went to the Bountiful temple this morning to do an endowment and took a name from the stake drawer. She told me she was so happy when she looked down and saw that I had submitted the name. I also learned that she was sick but decided to go to the temple anyways. I felt so blessed. God is so amazing! Even though I couldn’t do my ancestors work today, because I went, their work got done. Because my friend went, God used her to bless our family! I know He is sending blessings her way as well ❤️ I felt so much love and texted her some hearts. Then I looked down and saw this heart right in front of my feet! My ancestor sent her love as well."


Thursday, October 19, 2017

We Sacrifice to Gain

I'm preparing a video message about this topic, but in the meantime wanted to share some thoughts. 

I came across this video on Monday and was very inspired by it.This bishop's story is so powerful and humbling! I really believe that those who lose it all in this life, truly gain everything!



I've been getting so many wonderful messages and emails from complete strangers - who are sharing their experiences and adding their thoughts to my blog and video messages. In fact, over the weekend I received a very interesting email that I was impressed to share here. I pasted my response below - leaving the writer's name anonymous. 

"Elder Maynes came to preside at our stake conference this weekend. Guess what one of the biggest themes of his message was? False traditions!!!! He said that there are only 2 types of traditions, Celestial traditions and false traditions. The false traditions that he mentioned were corruption, immorality, abuse, violence, and I added dishonesty to the list. He really stressed the fact that we need to repent and to change our behaviors and habits so that we can incorporate more celestial traditions into our lives. He said that we are constantly teaching through the choices that we make. I personally do not have children, but I know that I am an example to my brothers and sisters and that I am teaching a message with every choice that I make for good or for bad. He shared a poem about sheep that stray and how when the sheep stray their lambs follow. Basically when a sheep leaves the ninety and nine it really isn't just the one sheep that leaves the gospel path, but it draws off its lambs with it. He drew a portion of the plan of salvation and drew three paths that lead to each of the kingdoms of glory. It is our adherence to false traditions and our refusal to repent that keeps us off of the path that lead to the celestial kingdom.

The president over our mission also spoke today and he shared a recent experience where he was driving in the middle of rush hour traffic. He was consulting his GPS and instead of offering multiple routes like it often does, this time the GPS app was only suggesting one route and part of it was bright read obviously meaning that there was a huge traffic jam in the middle of the route. He said that he started thinking to himself that there must be a quicker route and turned off of the suggested route in hopes of avoiding the traffic jam. To his dismay when the GPS rerouted it told him that his new chosen path had lengthened his trip time by 25 minutes. He then explained that he started getting upset with himself for being so foolish as to get off the recommended path. He of course likened this to our needing to stay on the gospel path no matter what circumstances may befall us during mortality. I have been appreciating your videos on YouTube. I even read your blog post on the 3 tares. I can see parts of all 3 of the tares in me. The one I feel like I most resemble is the one who wants to stay ignorant. I am still holding back. I am scared that the Lord will ask something of me that I don't want to give and so I am dragging my feet and neglecting vital parts of my spiritual nourishment--personal prayer and scripture study. I am not totally neglecting these practices, but I also feel like I have not been devoting anywhere near enough time to doing them every day.

Thank you for all the good that you are doing. I am sad that people are being so mean to you, and I admire your ability to love these people and your courage to keep shining your light and sharing your message in spite of the opposition that you are facing."

My Reply

"Thank you so much for sharing. That is so neat about your stake conference! Yes, I feel it's a topic that the Lord will keep impressing upon us, because it's a big stumbling block for the saints. I think we all have a little bit of tare in us, but over the coming years, things are going to happen in our lives and in the world that will cleanse our hearts. If we struggle but we want that change, the Lord is going to help us get there if we ask Him. It's all about setting that fear aside, which can be tough to do. I think these coming years will weed the fear out of us. I think about the members of the church who lost their homes in the California fires last week. They experienced fear like they have never known before. They lost everything. They were forced out of their traditions in a way. They now have nothing left to lose. They are starting all over, and I think it will be easier for them to have that mighty change of heart because there is nothing they are holding on to. The Lord wants to help us all get that place where all we need and want is Him. If it doesn't bring us closer to Him, then we have no desire for it in our lives.

I have faith that we'll get there, but in the meantime having patience with ourselves and trusting in God is the best thing we can do :) I know my heart is changing because bullies used to be hard for me to deal with, but now they have no effect on me at all. I went through a big Abrahamic trial a couple years ago and it weeded that fear and those insecurities right out of me. That's why I'm grateful for trials.

P.S. I love the analogy of the GPS route and the path of righteousness.  That is so true!

Much love,

Lindsey"


Monday, October 16, 2017

From Telestial to Terrestrial - Translation in These Latter Days!

My most favorite book in the Book of Mormon has always been Third Nephi - especially Chapter 17. 

16 - ...the eye hath never seen, neither hath the ear heard, before, so great and marvelous things as we saw and heard Jesus speak unto the Father;

Someday we will get to see what the Nephite people witnessed and I can't wait for that day! Surprisingly, as much as I love this chapter and its telling of the heavens opening, angels coming down and encircling the children with fire and ministering unto them, and Jesus saying that His joy was full because of the Nephites' faith, so much that He wept tears of joy - it isn't the only chapter that overwhelms my heart.


In Chapter 28 we read of that beautiful moment when When Jesus Christ asks each of His twelve Nephite disciples what they desire of Him. Nine requested to speedily return to Him when their ministry on the earth was complete, however three desired to remain on the earth to bring souls to Him until His Second Coming. 

6 And he said unto them: Behold, I know your thoughts, and ye have desired the thing which John, my beloved, who was with me in my ministry, before that I was lifted up by the Jews, desired of me.

7 Therefore, more blessed are ye, for ye shall never taste of death; but ye shall live to behold all the doings of the Father unto the children of men, even until all things shall be fulfilled according to the will of the Father, when I shall come in my glory with the powers of heaven.

8 And ye shall never endure the pains of death; but when I shall come in my glory ye shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye from mortality to immortality; and then shall ye be blessed in the kingdom of my Father.

9 And again, ye shall not have pain while ye shall dwell in the flesh, neither sorrow save it be for the sins of the world; and all this will I do because of the thing which ye have desired of me, for ye have desired that ye might bring the souls of men unto me, while the world shall stand.


10 And for this cause ye shall have fulness of joy; and ye shall sit down in the kingdom of my Father; yea, your joy shall be full, even as the Father hath given me fulness of joy; and ye shall be even as I am, and I am even as the Father; and the Father and I are one;

And there we learn that the Lord blesses us according to our righteous desires and that He is pleased when we desire to help others come unto Him. But are we asking Him often enough for blessings and gifts that will help us better minister unto others and lead them to Him?

In 1 Corinthians 12:31 we are taught to covet the best gifts:

But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

What is the more excellent way that the Lord promises to show? The footnotes take us to Ether 12:11-12 in which we learn that it is through the gift of Jesus Christ that this more excellent way is prepared. I have found chapter 12 in its entirety to be a chest full of heavenly treasure! Well worth the read. 
The Brother of Jared

If we back up just a little we learn about the key that opens the door to this more excellent way. 

8 But because of the faith of men he has shown himself unto the world, and glorified the name of the Father, and prepared a way that thereby others might be partakers of the heavenly gift, that they might hope for those things which they have not seen.


9 Wherefore, ye may also have hope, and be partakers of the gift, if ye will but have faith.

The key is faith! The way, is through Jesus Christ and the word (I'll expound in a minute - think Lehi's dream and the Brother of Jared), And the heavenly gift is the baptism by fire (fullness of the Holy Ghost) which allows us to pierce the veil, be in the full presence of the Lord, and is accompanied by prophecy, revelation, visions, heavenly visitors, angels, the Holy Ghost and more. 

In verse 17, Moroni references back to those three Nephites. He tells us,

And it was by faith that the three disciples obtained a promise that they should not taste of death; and they obtained not the promise until after their faith.

4 Nephi 1:3

And they had all things common among them; therefore there were not rich and poor, bond and free, but they were all made free, and partakers of the heavenly gift.

Hebrews 6:5

They have also “tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,” 

So great is this gift, that if it is denied after receiving it, one becomes a son of perdition. 

Doctrine and Covenants 76:31-32

Thus saith the Lord concerning all those who know my power, and have been made partakers thereof, and suffered themselves through the power of the devil to be overcome, and to deny the truth and defy my power—

They are they who are the sons of perdition, of whom I say that it had been better for them never to have been born;
Alma the Younger and the Sons of Mosiah

If we covet this gift, we must do all that we can to keep ourselves pure and worthy of it. Like Alma the Younger, we must be born again of the Spirit and baptized by fire. We must have that mighty change of heart and lose our desire to sin. In the meantime, while we prepare ourselves, the Lord is preparing a place for us in His Kingdom. However, even with faith and hope, there is an additional requirement that qualifies us for that mansion with the Lord. Without it we cannot receive this inheritance. That requirement is charity. Our hearts have to be changed, pure, and filled with love. We cannot be a tare. 

Ether 12:37

...except men shall have charity they cannot inherit that place which thou hast prepared in the mansions of thy Father.

Jesus Christ  - the Way or the Gift?

Some have argued that the fullness of the Priesthood is the way to the heavenly gift. What exactly is the fullness of the Priesthood? It is simply to be brought into the presence of the Father, by the Son, to be fully endowed with God’s power and being a possessor of all things, which can then be used to bless our fellow beings and to build the kingdom of God on the earth preparatory to the return of the Lord Jesus Christ and those who come with Him in great glory. (reference link) 

It is the Second Anointing. Whereas the "first anointing" promises blessings in the afterlife contingent on the patron's faithfulness, the second anointing actually bestows those blessings. (reference link)

Doctrine and Covenants 50:26-30

26 He that is ordained of God and sent forth, the same is appointed to be the greatest, notwithstanding he is the least and the servant of all.

27 Wherefore, he is possessor of all things; for all things are subject unto him, both in heaven and on the earth, the life and the light, the Spirit and the power, sent forth by the will of the Father through Jesus Christ, his Son.

28 But no man is possessor of all things except he be purified and cleansed from all sin.

29 And if ye are purified and cleansed from all sin, ye shall ask whatsoever you will in the name of Jesus and it shall be done.

30 But know this, it shall be given you what you shall ask; and as ye are appointed to the head, the spirits shall be subject unto you.

This comment I found on another blog, best supports and describes how I feel about the Heavenly Gift. 

"To me, from everything I’ve studied and read, the Heavenly Gift is to come into the presence of the Son. I have the gift of the Holy Ghost, so do you. I have been ordained to the priesthood, so have you. We have been endowed and taught sacred things about how to come into the presence of the Lord that are ONLY revealed in the temple.

The power of the priesthood, think about that phrase, can ONLY be received directly from God. It is not the same as authority or simply an ordination. Those are both invitations to go and get the real thing. We know we can’t pass the power of the priesthood from one man to another. We can only confer and ordain – invitations to go and get the real thing.


My conclusion: the Heavenly Gift is to receive power, directly from Christ, either by hearing his voice or by having him lay his hands upon our head. This fits the scripture that power cannot be passed from man to man – only authority can be given – an earthly authority at that. It is when we are in the presence of Christ we receive the fullness of the priesthood. The Heavenly gift IS the fullness of the priesthood."

Another commenter pointed out, 

"Why are the Gentiles failing to partake of the Heavenly Gift? We lack faith, hope, and charity."


Doctrine and Covenants 109:14-15

"And do thou grant, Holy Father, that all those who shall worship in this house may be taught words of wisdom out of the best books . . . And that they may grow up in thee, and receive a fulness of the Holy Ghost” 

From this scripture I have always believed that the gift of the Holy Ghost and the Fulness of the Holy Ghost are two separate things. We get the gift when we are baptized and the fulness occurs only after we are baptized by fire. The fulness of the Holy Ghost accompanies the fulness of the Priesthood - something that only God can give, and He is no respecter of persons when giving this gift. 

Translation - Part of the Heavenly Gift?


The Heavenly Gift, is something God bestows upon us to help further His work. President Joseph Fielding Smith taught, “It is a very reasonable thought to believe that both Moses and Alma, like Elijah and John [the Revelator], were translated to accomplish some work which the Lord had in store for them at some future day”

Whether in or out of the body, transfigured or translated while having these Heavenly experiences, it is by the glory of God that we can endure His presence. Translation operates at the Terrestrial level, and it isn't until resurrection that we can fully operate in the Celestial realm. Resurrection is the next step.  

According to Parley P. Pratt, ordinary human beings are said to have a telestial body; people who are translated are said to have a terrestrial body; and people who are resurrected are said to have a celestial body. The terrestrial body would be different from the Terrestrial glory of heaven, just as the present world is considered "telestial" but is not the Telestial glory of heaven. Translated beings with terrestrial bodies can appear or disappear the way the resurrected Jesus did in the 24th chapter of Luke. However, those who have resurrected "celestial" bodies have more power than those with terrestrial bodies. Thus when the wicked are resurrected, they will have power over Satan - a teaching we learned from Joseph Smith. 

What is Translation and What is it's Purpose?


Enoch
I once had an experience back in 2013 that really got me thinking about this subject. It was so profound for me that I wrote a post about it. I truly felt the men I encountered were either resurrected or translated beings. Here is what I have since learned about both types of beings. 

Both translated and resurrected beings are eternally young and fit, not subject to illness or injury and spend their existences as ministering angels doing things that require physical bodies to perform; for example, where a disembodied spirit can record events as a witness and offer comfort or advice, a physical body is required to perform ordinances such as laying on of hands.(reference link)

When righteous individuals are translated, their bodies are changed so they are not subject to mortal pain or death. Sometimes translated beings are taken from the earth without experiencing death in order to fulfill the Lord’s purposes. Translated beings, however, will undergo a future change as they pass from a translated state to a resurrected state.
https://www.lds.org/manual/book-of-mormon-student-study-guide/alma-45?lang=eng


And according to The Encyclopedia of Mormonism translation is defined as,

"changed from a mortal state to one in which they are temporarily not subject to death, and in which they experience neither pain nor sorrow except for the sins of the world. Such beings appear to have much greater power than mortals. All translated beings will eventually experience physical death and resurrection.Translation is a necessary condition in special instances to further the work of the Lord."

"...Resurrection is a step beyond translation"

"Translated beings are assigned special ministries, some to remain among mortals, as seems to be the case of John and the Three Nephites, or for other purposes, as in the case of Moses and Elijah, who were translated in order to appear with physical bodies hundreds of years later on the mount oftransfiguration prior to the resurrection of Christ. Had they been spirits only, they could not have laid hands on the mortal Peter, James, and John. the Prophet Joseph Smith explained the role of translated beings thus: "Many have supposed that the doctrine of translation was a doctrine whereby men were taken immediately into the presence of God, and into an eternal fullness, but this is a mistaken idea. Their place of habitation is that of the terrestrial order, and a place prepared for such characters He held in reserve to be ministering angels unto many planets, and who as yet have not entered into so great a fullness as those who are resurrected from the dead. The scriptures do not define differences between transfiguration and translation, but it appears that transfiguration is more temporary, occurring primarily to permit one to behold spiritual things not possible in the mortal condition.

Bruce R. McConkie has said,
Bruce R. McConkie

"In this state they are not subject to sorrow or to disease or to death. No longer does blood (the life-giving element of our present mortality) flow in their veins. Procreation ceases. If they then had children, their offspring would be denied a mortal probation, which all worthy spirits must receive in due course. They have power to move and live in both a mortal and an unseen sphere. All translated beings undergo another change in their bodies when they gain full immortality.... Millennial man will live in a state akin to translation. His body will be changed so that it is no longer subject to disease or death as we know it, although he will be changed in the twinkling of an eye to full immortality when he is a hundred years of age. He will, however, have children, and mortal life of a millennial kind will continue."


Translation - a Fruit of Zion?

Are we ready to build the City of Zion? The answer to this question will better help us understand our proximity to the gift of translation in these latter days. A better question might be, are we ready to leave this world (Babylon) behind? 

Here's what the prophets and modern day leaders have told us about translation;

"Zion is the great moment of transition, the bridge between the world as it is and the world as God designed it and meant it to be."Hugh Nibley; Approaching Zion, (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1989), 3-4.

"Jesus will never receive the Zion of God unless its people are united according to celestial law, for all who go into the presence of God have to go there by this law. Enoch had to practice this law, and we shall have to do the same if we are ever accepted of God as he was. It has been promised that the New Jerusalem will be built up in our day and generation, and it will have to be done by the United Order of Zion according to celestial law."  Wilford Woodruff; Journal of Discourses, 17:250.

"First, if the Saints are to become part of the great celestial system of eternity in the resurrection, they must, as a people, practice the law of Zion. Second, essentially the same program was required of Enoch and his people, so that they might enter into the presence of the Lord and be translated to a state of glory.


City of Zion 
Finally, the same challenge confronts the Saints in the last days. They, too, must build up Zion so that Christ can receive them unto Himself when He comes to reign on earth in His glory. This means that there are certain prerequisites that must be achieved by the Saints before Christ comes. The Lord told Enoch that in the last days Zion, the New Jerusalem, would be built 'that my people may gird up their loins, and be looking forth for the time of my coming.' The implication in this statement is that the Saints cannot look intelligently for the Second Coming and expect to be accepted by Christ unless they have built the society of Zion. When the New Jerusalem is built, Zion will be established upon the principles of the law of the celestial kingdom. Here is a prerequisite that must be fulfilled before the coming of Christ; and here is the challenge of the Saints." Hyrum L. Andrus; Doctrinal Commentary on the Pearl of Great Price, (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1969), 315-316


Orson Pratt
"...and he will purify the sons of Moses and of Aaron, until they shall be prepared to offer in that Temple and offering that shall be acceptable in the sight of the Lord. In doing this, he will purify not only the minds of the Priesthood in that Temple, but he will purify their bodies until they shall be quickened, renewed and strengthened, and they will be partially changed, not to immortality, but changed in part that they can be filled with the power of God, and they can stand in the presence of Jesus, and behold his face in the midst of that Temple.This will prepare them for further ministrations among the nations of the earth, it will prepare them to go forth in the days of tribulation and vengeance upon the nations of the wicked, when God will smite them with pestilence, plague and earthquake, such as former generations never knew." Orson Pratt; Journal of Discourses, 15:366.


Spencer W. Kimball
"O my beloved hearers, what a world it would be if a million families in this church were to be on their knees like this every night and morning! And what a world it would be if nearly a hundred million families in this great land and other hundreds in other lands were praying for their sons and daughters twice daily. And what a world this would be if a billion families through the world were in home evenings and church activity and were on their physical knees pouring out their souls for their children, their families, their leaders, their governments!This kind of family life could bring us back toward the translation experience of righteous Enoch. The millennium would be ushered in." Spencer W. Kimball, “The Family Influence,” Ensign, July 1973, 15

"There is a Priesthood in the heavens, and we have the same Priesthood on the earth, but there should be a closer communion between the Priesthood on the earth and the Priesthood in the heavens; it is desirable that we should be brought into closer proximity, we want to be advancing as Enoch advanced." President John Taylor; Journal of Discourses, 25:308
John Taylor


"How perfect it was in the days of Enoch we are not told, but everything that they had revealed to them pertaining to the organization of the Church of God, also pertaining to doctrine and ordinances, we have had revealed to us, excepting one thing, and that is the principle and power of translation; that, however, will in due time be restored also." President John Taylor; Journal of Discourses, 23:33

"The principle of translation was a principle that at that time existed in the Church, and is one of the principles of the Gospel, and which will exist in the last days." President John Taylor; Journal of Discourses, 26:90

Joseph F. Smith
"Many have supposed that the doctrine of translation was a doctrine whereby men were taken immediately into the presence of God, and into an eternal fullness, but this is a mistaken idea. Their place of habitation is that of the terrestrial order, and a place prepared for such characters He held in reserve to be ministering angels unto many planets, and who as yet have not entered into so great a fullness as those who are resurrected from the dead." Joseph Fielding Smith; Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1993), 169-171

"Although they had the ability to live in the earth among men, they had power over the elements of earth, power over the law of gravitation, by which they could move over the face of the earth with the speed f their own thoughts, power to reveal themselves to men; and yet power to mingle and move among men unobserved and hidden."  N.B. Lundwall;  Early Masterpieces of Latter-Saint Leaders, (Leatherwood Press 2005), 99.

Translation in the Latter Days



Pastor Bruce Allen
While pondering this topic I was intrigued to learn one day of a Christian pastor (Bruce Allen) who passionately speaks and writes on this topic. I have studied his experiences and messages and though he mostly speaks of translocation (travel through heavenly portals by faith) experiences, he terms these experiences under the umbrella of "translation". He speaks of his body changing (through a process) and not responding to the laws of time. He speaks of getting younger. 

In this article posted in 2008, Bruce expands on his story, which I found very interesting. 

At the tender age of four, Bruce Allen was playing with his brothers and sisters when he suddenly blurted out, "We are going to be here when Jesus comes back." One of his siblings asked, "Who's Jesus?".

The four‑year‑old Bruce only shrugged and went back to play.


"All my life I've had premonition of things to come before they happened," said Pastor Bruce
According to Pastor Bruce, the Third Day is the times we are now living in which is the beginning stages of paradise. After the Old Testament period, comes the Gentile period and then paradise when Jesus returns. Although Jesus has not yet come, the ending of the Gentile period signifies us entering into the last or third stage where Satan is defeated and the spiritual temple raised in the New Jerusalem.

"However, we are not called to follow the signs and wonders or the people behind them. What we are called to do is press on to be mature sons and daughters of God and set ourselves apart as Holy vessels for the glory of God. Then signs and wonders will follow us," warns Pastor Bruce.

Pastor Bruce Allen has been blessed to experience these signs and wonders in a way very few people have. He was translated in the spirit while ministering before a full congregation at Coeur d' Alene, Idaho, USA at Rending The Heavens conference in December 2002. He was suddenly caught up in the Spirit and found himself looking down on the continent of Europe. He was taken to a city and God told him it was in the nation of Latvia. He then came to a block of flats and was led to enter flat number 212.

"In that apartment I saw a little girl kneeling beside her bed, crying and praying to the Lord. Instantly I knew her name. It was Natalya. She didn't seem surprised or afraid to see me. I asked her why she was crying and she told me that she and her parents were hungry and cold, her parents had lost their jobs and now they were being evicted by the landlord. I was led of the Lord to comfort and encourage her and pray with her. Once I had finished praying with her I returned to the conference.

"The congregation did not suspect anything amiss because my body was still there in their presence. They did not know my spirit had left, gone to Latvia and returned. However, when Robert Bartow, a professional photographer took a photograph of me while in translation my body looked transparent as if it were an apparition," said Pastor Bruce. (Photo below was taken by Robert Bartow of Pastor Bruce in translation).


Unedited original photo taken by Robert Bartow 

"Translations, being taken up to heaven, visitation by angels and Jesus are getting more common now in this third day…In Iraq today there are a few hundred churches when there were hardly any before. And most of the people came to the Lord through a personal encounter with Jesus. The time is short and that is why He is appearing to more people, even non Christians and more people are being taken up to heaven," said Pastor Bruce.

Pastor Bruce teaches that as a part of this end time gathering and harvest, translation will be a necessary gift for many of God’s servants to do His work upon the Earth. In order for His servants to enter dangerous and forbidden locations throughout the world to share the gospel, they will need this gift. 


“We all want the finished product not recognizing the process. But let me give you an encouraging word. What took some of us years, doesn’t have to take you years. There is a grace in this hour because it’s the final hour, the day of conclusion. It’s the day of completion. The finish line is in sight and the Lord promised a quick work. If you’ve been struggling with your ability to recognize the voice of God…if you’ve been having difficulty in seeing into the realm of the Spirit, there is a grace here. God wants you to have that ability in the days ahead because you are going to need it…it’s the third day and what He’s doing, he’s doing quickly. And what you could never do for yourself, God’s going to intervene into your life, and bring you through a process very quickly. But He’s looking for willing hearts, hearts of passion, hearts that say, ‘here am I Lord’. Who qualifies to walk in this? Those who render Him total obedience. They will receive a unique manifestation of the reciprocation of His love by way of disclosing Himself. This is a promise for you right now." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWvwcCDdl-U

The day I discovered Bruce Allen, I was shown many other Christian evangelical ministers who are also teaching that the day of the Gentile is over, and the new day that we have entered in will be accompanied by the gift of translation, as we prepare the earth meet the Savior when He comes. I was reminded that God is no respecter of persons as I shared in my post "Unity Among the Churches? - Part of Zion"

"Evangelical, Catholic, Lutheran, Methodist, Jehovah Witness, Episcopalian, Pentecostal, Protestant, Mormon, etc. if our hearts are in Jesus, we are all on the Lord's team. Doctrinal differences aside, we all believe Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior. Together we make up the children of God. We are brothers and sisters. As Moroni tells us, God gives gifts unto all of His children, not just members of a particular church. These gifts are used to bless and benefit all. On this earth, it is the Lord's Kingdom against Satan's Kindom - there are no other teams to be on. When we try to be like Christ, and serve like Him, love like Him, we become His hands on this earth. We truly are on the same team and He uses all of us for His different purposes. He is gathering us all together into one fold. Let's not forget that. We should be rejoicing in this!

We know that during the Millennium, good and just members of many religions will be living upon the Earth. It will be Zion on the Earth. Leading up to that time, as the earth gets more wicked, I believe many people of different faiths will come together as there is strength in numbers. It will no longer be this church vs. that church but instead a united stance of righteousness vs. evil."

All who are willing to testify that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, of His Atonement,  and that He lives, God is going to use. Jesus is visiting Jews, Muslims, atheists, occult members, and those in communist countries where Christianity is forbidden and they are being taught who He is. Just as Samuel Hislop said in this Mormon Channel "Hope Works" series on lds.org, 

"We know that there are fifteen million Latter-day Saints in the world...but we should also put into context that among seven billion people we're still a pretty tiny minority...you would need a pretty powerful microscope to even see us there. We're small. Among the seven billion, there's lots of other Christians, Jews, Muslims and others who are doing great good, they have great influence and there's opportunity to partner with them in our communities to show the world at large the fruits of good faith. Now that considered, we have to remember something from Elder Orson F. Whitney...he said this 88 years ago, 

'God is using more than one people for the accomplishment of his great and marvelous work. The Latter-day Saints cannot do it all. It is too vast, too arduous, for any one people.'

Of course we have a message that other people need to hear. We have a very special thing - the restored gospel, but we also need to remember that God expects us to learn from others as well. And we can't do that unless we're willing to open our hearts and our minds and our ears to those who think, and act, and believe differently than we do."

Here is an older video of Pastor Bruce sharing some of these experiences. 




In the book Visions of Glory - One Man's Astonishing Account of the Last Days, "Spencer" (a pseudo-name for the anonymous LDS man who shares his personal story) shares his account of translation;

"...I knew we were all experiencing the same thing. We were being empowered to complete our missions, but I believe only a small percentage of those assembled there experienced this additional change into the translated state...I believe that all of the Twelve were likewise changed, for they thereafter did marvelous things no unchanged mortal could have done...They simply came and went by the power of God. (pg. 149)"

"Here in our little part of Zion, our hearts were changing, our bodies were changing, and our spiritual IQ was changing. We still had a fulness of the priesthood, as we first discovered just before the first great conference, and were learning every day what that meant. It took us years to understand that we had to evolve into Zion, not just march to it. It was a process that involved stripping away everything belonging to the world and replacing it with total faith in God. We had to learn that we did not need anything from the telestial world. All we needed was complete faith in Christ. It was a hard transition to make, but it was one of the reasons our journey to Zion took so many years - not to cover the distance, but to evolve spiritually so that we would be worthy to be in Zion when we actually arrived there. (pg. 168)"

"Those of us who had experienced the actual physical change of translation were somewhat different than others. We had clearer views of things and greater spiritual gifts. Unless we were speaking to another translated soul, we kept our translated status and these greater views to ourselves, as the Spirit seemed to require.

We were learning that translated people didn't get tired like normal people. Everything took less effort and taxed us less. We recovered quickly and could work long and hard and then recover in a few minutes. We still ate and slept, but we talked amongst ourselves, wondering if eating and sleeping was even necessary. After a big day's work, I felt hungry and tired but much less than in my previous life. I chose to eat, but it was different. I needed less food, slept better and far shorter, and felt absolutely wonderful. I could awaken in a second, even after just a few minutes of sleep, and feel perfectly awake and ready to go forward. At the end of the day, I was no more fatigued than when I slept a full night. I found that injuries, cuts, and scratches healed in days instead of weeks. If I wished it away, and prayed to the Father, it would heal in a matter of minutes. I expected in time to be impervious to injury, but I wasn't at this time. 

I was physically stronger day by day. My mind grew clearer and much quicker. Things that would have taken me long study before now came to me in flashes of understanding. I grew in my ability to understand complex situations, and I could instantly come up with complex answers that were completely correct and inspired. My hearing was actually attuned to the word of the Lord. Revelation became constant and unending. I no longer experienced temptations of any kind. I no longer walked through mists of darkness. I didn't hold onto the Iron Rod because it became part of me, a part of my soul, what I was. 

My capacity to love was profoundly enhanced, which made meetings and partings even sweeter, and more difficult. If anything had the power to make a translated soul sorrow or feel pain, it was this infusion of charity, because my heart wanted everyone to be blessed, uplifted, and supplied with every need. This wasn't always possible, and people I loved sometimes chose to transgress, and this caused deep sorrow at times. 

Every new gift I had was focused upon our new mission. The constant companionship of the Holy Ghost was an ever-present reality, and we knew the mind and will of the Lord. There was no guesswork and no more fear.

...Some of us had participated in the creation of worlds before we were born, and those divine sciences we understood then were slowly piercing the mortal veil, replacing mortal sciences. 

It was fascinating to watch our society leap forward, even while becoming simpler, less industrial, and non-commercial, with no consumer mindset. 

To my spiritual eyes, translated people just looked different. I could discern them far off. So when I had the chance to talk with another newly translated person, we occasionally took the time to discuss what this all meant, and what experiences and new priesthood gifts we had experienced.

...We also knew that even though the gift of translation had been fully given to us, that we still were in the process of becoming, of learning our duties and our abilities and when it was appropriate to use them. When I met an old translated being, there was a power and righteous serenity about them that I did not possess. Seeing and experiencing their highly developed state motivated me to yield to whatever process I needed to endure to become fully evolved in my new status. I knew I was changing. I also knew it was going to take years for the process to be fully implemented. 

There was a direct and constant influence of the Holy Ghost in the camps that could not be denied. It was a new phenomenon among the Saints that had begun that day of the great conference. Everyone was adjusting to this new level of spiritual power. There was a lot of conversation about whether this was the "millennial state" or if it was part of the process to the greater change of translation. (pg. 172-174)"

From Telestial to Terrestial


From Spencer's account we learn how and where we can gauge our own transition process from a telestial body to a terrestial body - should this be a gift that we ask for, or are given. 

Are we needing less sleep and feeling refreshed? Are we needing less food and feeling energized and well nourished? Are we letting go of the foolish traditions of Babylon? Have we been made aware of what they are? Are we losing the desire to be of the world? Has our taste in music and media changed to not only less of it, but only that which is wholesome and uplifting - evoking the Spirit within us? Has our love for our fellow man increased so much that we sorrow at the thought of their needs not being met? Do we see a change in our physical strength? Are our minds becoming more clear? Are we able to process things much quicker than before? Does it take us less time to learn more? Are we experiencing quick and miraculous healing? Have we experienced an increase in spiritual gifts? Have they been magnified? Have we lost the desire to sin and be tempted? Have we let go of addictions of any kind? Are we at one with God's will? Do we hear His voice? Do we feel purified and sanctified? 


What Does This Mean for You and Me?

I believe that the Lord wants us to know and understand our purpose in these last days. He has given us each specific missions to fulfill. Many are called but few are chosen. By pondering our Patriarchal blessings and going to the Lord in fasting and prayer, we can better understand how He would like to use us, what He has planned for us, and we can say 'Here am I Lord. Choose me' and 'What lack I yet?'. 

Are we all going to experience translation? No. Resurrection? Yes. Regardless, the Lord has asked us to covet the best gifts. If our desire is to truly build His Kingdom however He sees fit, then we can ask Him for anything if we feel it will serve that purpose, and we will receive.

This new era that we have entered into is unlike any before. If we haven't already, we are expected to become new creatures in Christ - to be born again of the Spirit and baptized by fire. We are to be changed! Accompanied with faith, our changes can bring about the greater manifestations of the Holy Ghost, the Heavenly gift! We are invited to become partakers, and we should not take this invitation for granted. As we muster up our faith, hope, and charity, never letting go of our Savior's hand, He will lead us to new horizons that will exceed our greatest expectations! 

I testify of this in Jesus' name amen. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Let's Talk General Conference! (Part 2)


I had some strong headwinds this week while trying to save and upload part 2 of this video! I spent days and hours trying to fix program bugs, errors, and even cleaning out unexpected viruses. After several tutorials and starting to feel defeated, I came to the realization that maybe...just maybe there were darker forces at play here.

My YouTube channel got slammed over the last 24 hours with cruel & attacking comments. People appearing as fellow church members who were trolling my videos, and overwhelming the comment feed. These types of comments are never published and always deleted. My YouTube channel as well as this blog, are to be places where the Spirit is cultivated and contention is not tolerated. The thought came to me about why the internet community has given these types of people the name "trolls".

The Urban Dictionary defines a troll as - "One who posts a deliberately provocative message to a newsgroup or message board with the intention of causing maximum disruption and argument."

The Wikipedia defines mythological trolls as:

"In Norse mythology, beings described as "trolls" dwell in isolated rocks, mountains, or caves, live together in small family units, and are rarely described as helpful or friendly. 

The Old Norse term for "troll"  is used to denote various beings, such as a jötunn or mountain-dweller, a witch,  an evil spirit, a ghost, a blámaðr, a magical boar, a heathen demi-god, a demon, a brunnmigi, or a berserker.

Later, in Scandinavian folklore, trolls became beings in their own right, where they live far from human habitation, are not Christianized, and are considered dangerous to human beings."

No, they are not like the cute little creatures in the animated cartoons. I truly feel that there are certain individuals ("cyber bullies", "trolls", etc.) who are being influenced by evil, and who can attack us with unseen forces of darkness. Servants of the adversary whether they realize it or not.

I blessed my computer, prayed over the programs, commanded all darkness out of my home, electrical circuits, wireless transmission etc. and asked the Lord to cease all efforts of the enemy against me. After doing so, the programs all began to run smoothly again, and without any further problems, my video saved successfully and uploaded quickly!

Sharing the messages of General Conference surely must be a powerful weapon of Light that Satan is not thrilled about. He did not want this video to happen. However, with the Lord on our side we can be victorious against darkness!

P.S....you better believe that I pray for my enemies - even the trolls :)

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Release Binding Words & Let's Talk General Conference! (Part 1)

Words can be binding. They either work for us or against us. In this week's video message I share an experience I had about releasing binding words and explain how it changed a relationship. Also, I discuss several gems and themes that I pulled from last week's LDS General Conference. It truly was a conference full of treasure! Plus a little more about the wheat and the tares.


 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

The Three Types of Tares

During conference I had the thought come into my mind that I needed to write a post titled, "The Three Types of Tares". Right after this thought, three different personality types came into my mind of people I had recently encountered last week, and I felt the Spirit teach me that in the parable of the Wheat and the Tares, there is more than meets the eye.

Over the last few weeks I have stumbled upon numerous Near Death Experience testimonies in which the person having the encounter said that they were shown Hell, and were taught something very surprising.

In one particular testimony, a man shared that while visiting Hell, the Lord had shown him a woman who resided there and was reading her Bible.

The man asked, "Who is this woman, and why is she reading a Bible in Hell?"

The Lord replied, "During her life on Earth she was an incredible evangelical missionary - the very best. In fact, she brought more people unto me, than any missionary that has ever lived!"

"Then why is she in Hell?" the man asked in a puzzled tone.

 Somberly, the Lord replied, "Because she could not forgive."

I am reminded of the prodigal son. The second brother had stayed true and faithful to his father yet was filled with bitterness. The prodigal son however, made error but repented and was welcomed into his Father's Kingdom to receive an inheritance.

Doctrine & Covenants 64:9-10

9 Wherefore, I say unto you, that ye ought to forgive one another; for he that forgiveth not his brother his trespasses standeth condemned before the Lord; for there remaineth in him the greater sin.


10 I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men.

None of us are perfect and if we fall short in this life, we can rest assured that if we have extended the hand of mercy to those who have offended us, there is hope for us.

Matthew 5:7

Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

In another testimony, a woman was shown many Christian saints who were suffering in a state of agony and darkness. She was told by the Lord that these Christians attended church every Sunday, read their scriptures daily, prayed often, and kept the commandments. When she asked why they were in Hell, the Lord replied that even though they said and did all the "right" things to resemble a good Christian life - they never knew Him. They were void of the Spirit. The religious symbols and rituals became their idols. They loved and worshiped the lifestyle & images, more than the Lord.

Matthew 7:22-23

22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

After writing this blog post, I was reading the other day in Days of Awe (which I have shared on this blog before), and I found it interesting that the author brought up the Parable of the Sower and mentioned three personality types. She said,

"The final, lingering question that Latter-day Saints ask is always the same.With all this clear, testifying imagery, why didn’t the Jews recognize their own Messiah? The Savior Himself answered that question with the Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:3; Mark 4:3; Luke 8:5). Many Jews did recognize the Messiah. They were those who received the seed into fertile ground. Many of those were the valiant founders of the Lord’s Church, willing to face any hardship
to serve the Christ."

"The Savior speaks of a second type of personality — he who receives the word, but fails to nurture it. The “fear of the world” overcomes this person, and he fails to be valiant."

"The third personality in the Lord’s parable is a hardened one who might actively fight against the truth. Such were those certain wicked priests of the Sanhedrin, desiring to protect their power and position by any means available to them. Such a person was Saul, the Pharisee and lawyer, who became the Apostle Paul when his eyes were opened."

The second and third personality type sound very much like the second and third types of tares that I have listed below. In the Parable of the Wheat and the Tares we learn:

Doctrine and Covenants 101:65-66

65 Therefore, I must gather together my people, according to the parable of the wheat and the tares, that the wheat may be secured in the garners to possess eternal life, and be crowned with celestial glory, when I shall come in the kingdom of my Father to reward every man according as his work shall be;

66 While the tares shall be bound in bundles, and their bands made strong, that they may be burned with unquenchable fire.

Doctrine and Covenants 86:1-7

1 Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you my servants, concerning the parable of the wheat and of the tares:

2 Behold, verily I say, the field was the world, and the apostles were the sowers of the seed;

3 And after they have fallen asleep the great persecutor of the church, the apostate, the whore, even Babylon, that maketh all nations to drink of her cup, in whose hearts the enemy, even Satan, sitteth to reign—behold he soweth the tares; wherefore, the tares choke the wheat and drive the church into the wilderness.

4 But behold, in the last days, even now while the Lord is beginning to bring forth the word, and the blade is springing up and is yet tender—

5 Behold, verily I say unto you, the angels are crying unto the Lord day and night, who are ready and waiting to be sent forth to reap down the fields;

6 But the Lord saith unto them, pluck not up the tares while the blade is yet tender (for verily your faith is weak), lest you destroy the wheat also.


7 Therefore, let the wheat and the tares grow together until the harvest is fully ripe; then ye shall first gather out the wheat from among the tares, and after the gathering of the wheat, behold and lo, the tares are bound in bundles, and the field remaineth to be burned.


So, what exactly are tares and why are they so undesirable? I did some research and here's what I discovered;

The darnel weed (" Lolium Temulentum" AKA the "tares") grows plentifully in Syria and Palestine. Before it comes into ear is very similar in appearance to wheat. It grows right in with the wheat blending in and going undetected until the ear appears - that's when the difference is noticed. It actually uproots the wheat. Even then, the farmers do not try to separate it from the wheat. If eaten, it produces convulsions, and even death.

"Zizania", another type of tare, has been supposed to be degenerated wheat. On the near approach of harvest it is carefully weeded out from among the wheat by the women and children. Zuwan is commonly used as chickens' food; it is not poisonous to human beings unless infected with the mold ergot.  http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionary/tares/

In these last days, the tares are Christians and members of the Church who blend in and appear on the outside to be faithful and true. However, on the inside they hold opposing beliefs which are counteractive to gospel and doctrine of the Church. As they become attached to true and faithful members of the Church, they become destructive, and slowly pull their roots from the gospel. Once their roots have been pulled, a spiritual death begins.

As the harvest goes forth, the angels (the reapers) pluck out the wheat and burn the field.

Doctrine and Covenants 45:57

"For they that are wise and have received the truth, and have taken the Holy Spirit for their guide, and have not been deceived—verily I say unto you, they shall not be hewn down and cast into the fire, but shall abide the day."

In our day, the tares have come to ear and are currently being exposed from the wheat. Through political upheaval, local and national turmoil, dislike and non-support of the counsel of local leaders, prophets and apostles, and leaning to blur the lines of black and white (right and wrong), there is a process happening. Many members have lost their testimony of the true doctrine of the gospel, and are inwardly void of the Spirit. As these events of the last days unfold, the tares seek to uproot their fellow church members from the gospel.This apostasy can have three outcomes - their own free choice of leaving the Church (tare #1), unwilling excommunication (tare #2), or slipping quietly into inactivity (tare #3).

It's important to be clear that the tares symbolize a wicked & rebellious heart. Not all who leave the Church are a tare. Some may be deceived and others may have fragile hearts, some may have experienced abuse or unkind treatment from other members (tares). We cannot judge another's heart - only our own. In the end we are judged by what's in our heart. If we know Christ, He will lift us up to be with Him.

Tares can also belong to other churches (other Christians). The parable is to say that tares are those who love wickedness more than righteousness.  It's not members vs. non-members or less active. It's about our hearts. In these last days, the Lord is gathering the pure in heart into Zion.

“Charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ” (Moroni 7:47-48).

I have recently witnessed this week, the separation of wheat and tares happening on a wider scale. I have noticed a large number of people being offended by recent conference talks, people fighting over differing views and opinions on growing political matters, people fighting over differing opinions and views on philosophical matters, medical matters, doctrinal matters, educational matters etc. to the point that marriages are being broken up, family relationships are being broken, friends are no longer speaking, professionals are verbally attacking their colleagues,  and people are vocally leaving the church. I counted fourteen people just today, who have declared they no longer want to be members of the Church. Perhaps tares who had already apostatized inwardly and tarried until the "right moment" to make their exit. As the various matters for contention continue to increase I keep hearing in the back of my mind..."And the love of men shall wax cold".

President Joseph Fielding Smith pointed out that the tares are not just limited to certain church affiliations. He said, “even in the Church the tares are to be found. It is the tares which are to be gathered up and burned from all over the world, but those in the Church will also be gathered out and find their place in the fire. (Church History and Modern Revelation, 1:354.)

In 1894 President Woodruff stated: “God has held the angels of destruction for many years, lest they should reap down the wheat with the tares. But I want to tell you now, that those angels have left the portals of heaven, and they stand over this people and this nation now, and are hovering over the earth waiting to pour out the judgments. And from this very day they shall be poured out. Calamities and troubles are increasing in the earth, and there is a meaning to these things. Remember this, and reflect upon these matters. If you do your duty, and I do my duty, we’ll have protection, and shall pass through the afflictions in peace and in safety.” (Young Women’s Journal, Aug. 1894, pp. 512–13.)

Years later in response to President Woodruff's statement above, President Joseph Fielding Smith said, “The Lord said that the sending forth of these angels was to be at the end of the harvest, and the harvest is the end of the world. Now, that ought to cause us some very serious reflections. And the angels have been pleading, as I have read it to you, before the Lord to be sent on their mission. Until 1893 the Lord said to them no, and then He set them loose. According to the revelation of President Woodruff, the Lord sent them out on that mission."

“What do we gather out of that? That we are at the time of the end. This is the time of the harvest. This is the time spoken of which is called the end of the world.” (Signs of the Times, pp. 116–21.)

https://www.lds.org/manual/doctrine-and-covenants-student-manual/section-81-89/section-86-the-parable-of-the-wheat-and-the-tares?lang=eng

Three Types of Tares 

Last week the Spirit impressed upon my mind, three types of tares that we are to be aware of.

1) Wicked - These are those whose hearts' desire are pure wickedness. They have chosen the other side of the fence. The wolves in sheep's clothing. They knowingly do evil and willfully sin. They desire to lure and persuade others away from the truth. Led away by sin without a desire to repent. These are those in the Great and Spacious building - mocking things that are sacred.

2) Self-Righteous - These are those who often are unknowingly doing the devil's bidding.  They believe they are on the right side of the fence, but are deceived. They actively and unknowingly fight against truth, and are easily offended. The pharisees of our modern day. They twist doctrines and present themselves as faithful members of the Church but are in reality servants of Satan. Often hypocritical, and quick to point out the faults of others. They are on a mission to attack other members who do not share their same perspectives. A justified crusade of self-righteous anger displayed through manipulative tactics. So passionate are they about being "right" that they lose the Spirit as it swallowed up in their own pride. They become a source of temptation to the faithful and tend to choke or corrupt the word of God, or the good seed that is sown.


3) Ignorant - These are those who refuse to learn and accept truth because of fear. They have received the word but fail to nurture it. They live the gospel when it's convenient. Often they are the ones who are easily lured away from the iron rod, by those in the Great and Spacious Building. In their mind it is safer to be "in the dark" to avoid accountability. They want to participate in Babylon without feeling "guilty" for doing so. They want to be on both sides of the fence, but because that is not possible, they settle for the middle. Their hearts are rooted in the world instead of the gospel. They enjoy the benefits of being a member of the church - the traditions, the social aspects, the fun activities; but they also value the opinions of the world. They try to serve two masters.

Conclusion

The purpose of this post is not to go about your day looking to label those in your family, ward, and community with these tare titles. We are commanded to love one another. Rather, it is to help you look inward at your own faults and short comings and seek to improve. Do you see yourself in any of these descriptions? What is written in your heart? How can you change?

We can love ourselves and all of God's children without tolerating the darkness. I have experienced recent bullying from all three types of tares in the last month. The Spirit has impressed upon me to not publish their comments, to block their contact, and then pray for them. Pray that they will be able to encounter the real love of Jesus Christ. That they will no longer be void of peace and happiness. I try my best to see them through the eyes of my Heavenly Father, and the truth of who they really are and the potential of who they can become.

Though we are not called to judge, we are called to warn our neighbor. Elder Christopherson has wisely counseled"While the duty to warn is felt especially keenly by prophets, it is a duty shared by others as well. In fact, “it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor." We who have received a knowledge of the great plan of happiness—and its implementing commandments—should feel a desire to share that knowledge since it makes all the difference here and in eternity. And if we ask, “Who is my neighbor that I should warn?” surely the answer will be found in a parable that begins, “A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves,”and so forth."

We have seen amazing examples of tares transforming into wheat such as was the case of Saul of Tarsus and Alma the Younger. The real battle is not between God's children, but between good and evil. Without the influence of evil, we would experience all of our brothers and sisters in God's truth. No, it's not our job to judge, but rather it's our great responsibility to warn and to bring Light into this world. That Light is God's truth. Our job is to reflect the Light of the Lord and shine it throughout the world. Only the Light and Love of Christ can change this world. In the end love conquers all.

The harvest is happening now. We are seeing the separation take place. Let us find peace in the words of President Woodruff, "If you do your duty, and I do my duty, we’ll have protection, and shall pass through the afflictions in peace and in safety.” Though we may not be immune to every coming storms & affliction, and we most likely will experience some level of discomfort, inconvenience, sorrow & loss; we certainly don't have to suffer. We can experience the peace that is promised through our Lord and Redeemer Jesus Christ. He is mighty to save. He can make us whole.