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Gospel Topics Chapter 9 Bringhurst Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
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June 1, 2021 9:59 pm

Gospel Topics Chapter 9 Bringhurst Part 3

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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June 1, 2021 9:59 pm

This week Bill and Eric take a closer look at chapter 9 in the book The LDS Gospel Topics Series: A Scholarly Engagement (Signature Books, 2020), titled “Plural Marriage after 1890.” The entire series along with other articles covering the Gospel Topics Essays, printed between 2013-2015, are located at mrm.org/gospel-topics-essays, where you can get a fuller report.

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You are knocking the door and opened it to find two friendly representatives from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormon church. So what you say will you send them away without a Christian witness or will you engage them in a meaningful and Christ honoring conversation if you desire. The latter, we suggest the book, answering moments questions by Romanism research ministries Bill McKeever and Darren Johnson answering woman's questions is available wherever you find quality Christian books on Mormonism program and examine the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a viewpoint on Mormonism sponsored by Mormonism research ministry since 1979 Mormonism research ministry has been dedicated to equipping the body of Christ with answers regarding the Christian faith in a manner that expresses gentleness and respect. And now, your host for today's viewpoint on Mormonism welcome to this edition of viewpoint on Mormonism on your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is Eric Johnson. My colleague at M. R. M. Plural marriage, chapter 9.

In the book the LDS gospel topics series a scholarly engagement. Chapter 9 is titled plural marriage after 1890, and it's written by a man named Newell G.

Bringhurst, and he's talking about the essay that was titled the manifesto in the end of plural marriage, and for those of you who have not been with us this entire week on the subject. The manifesto was a document that was signed in 1890 by fourth president of the LDS church. A man by the name of Wilford Woodruff and in that manifesto.

It basically promised the United States government that the church was not teaching polygamy or plural marriage nor permitting any person to enter into its practice so that in this essay. What Mr. Bringhurst is going to do is he's going to offer his praises for what the essay has to say and Eric you and I probably would share some of those praises because certainly this is delving into subject matter that the church has in the past been pretty reluctant to admit because what they're going to be admitting is that there was a lot of deception going on. They were promising the government. One thing but really behind the scenes. Something else was taking place to talk about some of that today when he says that there is much to praise.

I don't know if I would go that far though because I think much of the reason for why they put together the gospel topics essays is damage control. This information is on the Internet. People are talking about it and they're trying their best to take as much information as they can but share what they want people to hear and to be able to.

I think I'm in use the word spin, they're going to spend the information in a way like they are with polygamy, making it sound like this was an okay thing at the time and and we don't practice today but we used to do it in and somehow it's okay. Mr. Bringhurst writes most basic is his effort to deal openly and forthrightly with this controversial topic. The essay states quote like the beginning of plural marriage in the church the end of the practice was a process rather than a single event. Revelation came wine upon line, precept upon precept" messy. I would probably struggle with that statement from the essay because the reason why the beginning of plural marriage in the church was a process is because Joseph Smith has to lie about it. You can't talk about polygamy in the LDS church without also bringing up the subject of deception and prevarication. Smith couldn't just blurted out because he actually tested the waters by sharing this with some people that were close to him and many of them were repulsed by the idea even one of his own brothers. So naturally, it couldn't have just come out. All of a sudden, for one, he has the approval of the church itself that he needs to meet which would be difficult and he would also have to somehow circumvent the laws of the land that did not allow for the practice of plural marriage.

Mr. Bringhurst goes on to say, equally significant, it confesses that abandoning the practice quote required great faith and sometimes complicated painful and intensely personal" decisions by leaders and rank-and-file members. This was because church members viewed plural marriage as a commandment from God and imperative that helps quote raise up a righteous posterity unto the Lord, combined with a firm belief that they would be blessed for their participation will I can understand that dilemma that many members probably faced and I think it's absolutely true. The members were told that plural marriage was a commandment from God not know matching your Latter Day Saints you have Brigham Young, John Taylor, the second and third president telling you that this is a divine commandment God is saying for us as a people that we need to engage in plural marriage Brigham Young with so far to say that if you didn't do it. You would be damned.

He said that the only way you could become a god, or even the son of God, is if you entered into polygamy. So you have two profits. I'm disappointed to Brigham Young and John Taylor.

And now you've got the fourth president telling you, just the opposite.

You've been led to believe that these are men of God who speak on behalf of God, you can understand why you're facing a conundrum here and you might ask why is it that a latter-day St. would put up with that. Why wouldn't they just stop and reason through this. Sam look either. These men are acting out of their own impulses, coming up with their own ideas for my God can't seem to make up his mind whether or not we should or should not practice plural marriage. I think the answer to that is relatively simple and the reason why it's simple is because Latter Day Saints during this time.

And I and I would say even today are told that you're not supposed to question their leaders. You have Heber C. Kimball, who was a member of the first presidency under Brigham Young who taught on November 8, 1857 and you can find this in the Journal of discourses, volume 6, page 32, he said. And when you are taking a position. If you do not know that you were right. Do not take it. I mean independently, but if you were told by your leader to do anything do it. None of your business. Whether it is right or wrong. In that same sermon he went on to say, Brother Brigham is my leader.

He is my profit my seer, my rebel leader and whenever he says that is for me to do and it is not for me to question him one word Nordic question God a minute do you not see.

So this is the mindset a lot of Latter Day Saints follow.

So to see this contradiction needs to be set aside and just do what you're told and this hasn't change. This is still pretty much that the teaching of the LDS church today may give you a quote from apostle and Russell Ballard in a conference message printed in the enzyme magazine, November 1999, page 64 however, in the Lord's church. There is no such thing as a loyal opposition. One is either for the kingdom of God and stands in defense of God's prophets and apostles or one stands opposed. Let me give you another citation from a church manual. This comes from 2000, the latter-day St. woman basic manual for women.

Part B, page 106, it says they should never criticize priesthood leaders or say unkind things about them criticizing our leaders endangers our own salvation so you might say that the average member saw it, basically as a threat to question what they're being told you just do it without the bottom of page 235 the author of this chapter G Bringhurst says rank-and-file Latter Day Saints. The essay concedes, accepted the manifesto with various degrees of reservation. Many were not ready for plural marriage to come to an end and it further admits that the 1890 manifesto did not prohibit individual church members quote from continuing to practice or perform plural marriage as a matter of religious conscience. If these leaders were aware of this going on and did nothing about it. Aren't they kind of encouraging are they allowing them to continue the practice and performing plural marriages. I would say of course they are. Reads also refreshing is the essay's frank acknowledgment of so-called post-manifesto, polygamous marriages, facilitating such marriages was at the manifesto quote said nothing about the laws of other nations." Thus, church leaders continue to perform marriages in Mexico and Canada to nations where Latter Day Saints had established settlements prior to 1890. The essay states quote latter-day St. couples who live far away from temples were permitted to be sealed in marriages outside them for a time post-manifesto plural marriages require the approval of a member of the first presidency. There is no definitive evidence, however, that the decisions were made by the first presidency as a whole" Let's talk about that because manifesto of 1890 said specifically has ice just read it earlier. We are not teaching polygamy or plural marriage nor permitting any person to enter into its practice but yet this essay seems to admit, for a time post-manifesto plural marriages required the approval of a member of the first presidency will lift a member of the first presidency can give approval. Doesn't that tend to sound like they're still teaching plural marriage and they are allowing some to enter into its practice. If you go to the footnote footnote number 38.

At the end of this statement. There are several different citations of works, that you would not be able to find very easily, but this is what it says at the end is referring to Joseph F.

Smith, and he was the sixth president of the church. This is what it says Pres. Joseph F. Smith later affirmed that he Pres. Woodruff the fourth president and Pres. Snow. The fifth president as president of the church quote have not given authority to anyone to perform or enter into plural marriages. Since the manifesto" and that comes from the Francis M. Wyman, Journal dated December 14, 1905 does not sound like a bit of a contradiction, especially when we look at the very next sentence on page 236. This is what Newell G. Bringhurst writes the essay also broaches Joseph F. Smith, ambiguous, contradictory behavior after becoming church president in 1901, Smith allowed a small number of new plural marriages during the early years of his administration, but yet you just read the footnote were Joseph F. Smith seems to deny this. So what is a Latter Day Saints supposed to believe about this now.

Again, how many of them are reading these footnotes in the essay, especially now that the church has made it more difficult to see them. You have to actually click on it, a window pops out. You see the note and then when you go on it disappears. If you try to print the essay out. You don't get any of these footnotes or endnotes.

None of them show up. The numbers are there. After a sentence, but it doesn't tell you what that number is trying to tell you, even though the church is trying to be a little bit more transparent. They are making it difficult for you to see through that transparency.

Thank you for listening you would like more information when guarding this research ministry. We encourage you to visit our website www.mrm.org you can request a free newsletter Mormonism research. We hope you will join us again as we look at another viewpoint is is 101 for teens is a valuable resource for anyone wanting a simplified view of the Mormon religion from a Christian perspective. Mormonism 101 for teens is available at the Utah lighthouse bookstore in Salt Lake City or MRM.org


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