Friday, October 20, 2017

Cursed Be the Man That Trusteth in Man

I offer an analogy to explain something I have myself erred in.

Joseph, following Paul, taught:
The Church is a compact body composed of different members, and is strictly analogous to the human system, and Paul, after speaking of the different gifts, says, "Now ye are the body of Christ and members in particular; and God hath set some in the Church, first Apostles, secondarily Prophets, thirdly Teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. Are all Teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?" It is evident that they do not; yet are they all members of one body. All members of the natural body are not the eye, the ear, the head or the hand--yet the eye cannot say to the ear, I have no need of thee, nor the head to the foot, I have no need of thee; they are all so many component parts in the perfect machines--the one body; and if one member suffer, the whole of the members suffer with it; and if one member rejoice, all the rest are honored with it. - TPJS p. 244
In this analogy, the mouth of the body of Christ is a, or the, prophet.  When we as individual human beings speak, we do not speak to our body in order to instruct our body in how to operate.  We don't speak to members of our body, but to those who are not part of our body.  That which is our body responds to our will, not our voice.  So it is in the body of Christ: the members have taken the Holy Spirit for their guide - it serving as the will of the body - and need not that any man should teach them.  Again: the mouth speaks not to the body, but to those who are not of the body.

Imagine, if you can, that as you spoke to someone else saying "Jump!," your hand, in apparent response to your words (and not your will), lept off your arm, moving entirely on its own.  If that happened, you'd probably be horrified beyond words, and you would instantly realize a couple of things - first, that your hand was in reality an altogether separate being from yourself that had only been pretending to be part of you, and second, that you'd prefer to kill it with fire rather than ever accept it as your hand again.  It isn't part of you.  And you'd be afterwards filled with grief, pain, and loss - it was your hand, after all, and now you don't have one, and you would wish things could be like they were before, and that this had never happened.

So it is when someone who has been visited with fire and the Holy Ghost, and has received a remission of their sins, hearkens to the voice of a man rather than wait and rely upon the direct word of the Lord.  For in receiving the Holy Ghost we become part of the Lord's church, members of his body, and had ought to respond solely to his direct will and word by the Spirit.  For such an one to then take any man's word and act solely upon that word as though it were from the Lord, even if the one whose word is taken as the Lord's word is a prophet, such an one is cursed of the Lord, cut off (or severed) from his presence, and prepared for burning.

This is the point of the incident between the two prophets in 1 Kings 13.  The one prophet hearkened to the other prophet's words over the Lord's words directly to himself and was slain for it.

To be plain in speaking, for one who claims to have received the Holy Ghost, to follow any man's words, even a prophet's, without getting direct instructions from the Lord, is either to reveal oneself to not be a member of the Lord's church but a pretender to the Lord's faith, or else he is then cut off from the presence of the Lord, cast back out to the telestial world, where indeed they are some of Paul, and some of Joseph, and some of Denver - followers not of the Holy Spirit but of men, some of them true prophets.  Yet even then the unseen angels still instruct at the word of the Lord and await the signs and tokens of discipleship, the works of righteousness, even the fruits meet for repentance - deeds conforming to the law and commandments of God.

I believe there will be some out there who know exactly what I am talking about in this.

A prophet is only of use to you inasmuch as he teaches the commandments of God whereby you by doing them may yourself repent of all your sins and receive the visitation of the Holy Ghost and a remission of your sins and become a member of the body of Christ, taking the Holy Spirit for your guide.  Otherwise, he is of no use to you at all.