Monday, October 16, 2017

What We Don't Need

Each fellowship functions as what the Book of Mormon calls a church; inasmuch as nothing was taught in the churches save it be repentance and faith on God, according to the Book of Mormon, then they all were the church of God. For any man or group to reach into all the churches and dictate how they shall relate to each other, and how they shall distribute their substance, is not a light thing and requires wisdom. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have sufficient wisdom to reach into each one of your fellowships and tell you how to conduct your business. The Lord, however, does have that wisdom, and I suggest we listen to him and take his words in the Sermon on the Mount as our statement of principles and our guide and standard.

No man is acting as prophet without saying “Thus saith the Lord,” or its functional equivalent. Either you are acting as the mouthpiece of the Lord and have your message from him to deliver word-for-word, or else you are not. “The Spirit moved upon me / us” is insufficient. If you have it from God, you can either quote him, or you can explain it from the ground up. If you aren’t quoting him, and cannot explain it, then it will be very hard to persuade others you are correct - and persuade you must, since this must be by mutual agreement. See D&C 121.

We don’t need a creed - a declaration of beliefs. The Lord didn’t ask for one. He asked us for a statement of principles, which are rules of behavior. He asked us for a guide and standard - a tool to direct and measure behavior. And he’s already provided a written statement of principles, a written guide and a standard, that all mankind is required to abide for salvation: the Sermon on the Mount. See 1 Nephi 13:40-41, and then see Luke 6:20-49, Matthew 5-7, and 3 Nephi 12-14.

The priesthood of God does not need us to provide them with directions on how to perform the rites, for either the priests have their instructions from God or they aren’t his priests. Also, God calls his own priests. Therefore we do not need to publish the rules concerning ordination to the priesthood, neither do we need to provide directions on how to perform the rites, nor have we need to mention any rite other than baptism, in the guide and standard. Those who really want to know about such matters can search the scriptures. There is no reason to enable pretenders by publishing to the world things which do not concern them. We can see the result of enabling pretenders in 4th Nephi.

We don’t need tithing. The Lord has given us his statement of principles, his guide and standard, on the administration of the substance he has placed in our individual hands in the Sermon on the Mount. If we were observing the Sermon, which is the Lord’s statement of principles, his written guide and standard, we would, as the Nephites and the primitive Christians, “have all things common.” This is possible to do within the fellowships. None among us within the fellowships would call anything he possessed his own. We’d be equal, both temporally and spiritually.

Let us not lay more on anyone than the Lord has laid upon everyone: the Sermon. Let us not lay less upon anyone than the Lord has laid upon everyone: the Sermon. Let us teach one another the Sermon on the Mount, exhort one another to observe it diligently, and publish it to the world, that they may also believe Jesus's words even as little children, repent of all their sins, be baptized by one of his sent servants, receive the Holy Ghost, and obey Jesus's words until the end and be saved, even as we have done and are doing.

Why would any disciple of Jesus Christ do otherwise? See JST Matthew 5:21-22.

Come, let us reason together: