Of God and Man

Lorenzo Snow once stated:

“As man now is, God once was: As God now is, man may be.”

I’ve heard this often growing up as a child. To a youthful boy this sounds wonderful. “God was once a man? I can become like God if I live worthy?” Going on a mission, you would think this sort of “doctrine” (although I don’t believe this is “official” church doctrine) would be something that people would jump on. I was suprised to later learn while on a mission that this is one one of the most controversial teachings in the Chruch.

While chatting with a friend on IM, he said:

One problem that I have with the LDS church (if you don’t mind) is that in the Bible, God reveals his name as “I Am” and it says that God is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the End… etc… which is what “I Am” represents… time has no bounds on God… got is Eternal… no begining, no end.

Mormons teach that God was once Man and that man can become gods too…. where does that “pattern” of thinking begin? Who is the first “god” then?

That “logic” lines up with the what happened in the Garden of Eden when the serpant (satan) told Eve that they would become “like god” if they ate the fruit… now the mormon church has a better one… you won’t become “like god” but you will become a god.

I suppose the fear is that if you claim you may one day become as God, God will smite you for even thinking you may become like him. Or it may be that we are becoming too prideful to ever think we may be as God and this pride is a sin. Or, at the very least, they may just think we are fools for thinking this and there is no real danger in believing it. I don’t know for sure, it’s probably all of the aformentioned reasons, but whatever the reason, the Christian community really frowns on this thinking.
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Abortion destroys freedom

Some people say that making abortion illegal would limit freedom, and that the mother should be given a choice in the matter. While we are all able to make our own choices in mortality, people who choose to have abortions should understand that in making that one choice themselves, they are destroying any choices that the unborn child would ever make. Essentially, they are taking away the freedom and choices of an entire lifetime by choosing to selfishly make one choice for themselves. Just some food for thought…

Ammendment to Protect Traditional Marriage

The First Presidency issued a letter for saints in America to “express themselves on this urgent matter to their elected representatives in the Senate.”

I probably would have forgotten to do so, but thanks to a friend who fowarded me the contact information for the senators in my state, I followed through.

I would just like to encourage anyone who reads this to express themselves to the state senators. Also, may I suggest that once you have done so, you may forward your state senators contact information on to friends and family to make it easier for them to do the same.

Below is the letter I wrote, in case you want/need ideas to get you started with the letter. It shouldn’t be too difficult to “express yourself”:

Senator [Senator’s Surname],

I am writing to express my feelings about the upcoming vote on June 6, to amend the federal constitution to protect the traditional institution of marriage.

While I understand the desire some same-gender couples have to express their love publicly and have laws in their favor as couples, marriage has always been between man and wife, and should always be between man and wife. If a same gender couple wants to be “bound” in some way, let them call it something else because it is not marriage.

Our society is built on the family unit. I believe that the best way to strengthen our country is to strengthen and promote families. Protecting “marriage” will only serve this purpose.

Please vote in favor to amend the constitution to protect the traditional institution of marriage.

Dustin Davis
Taylorsville, Utah

Helpful Links:
Full Text of First Presidency Letter
Church Urges Members to Contact Senators on Marriage Amendment
The Family: A Proclamation to the World
U.S. Senate Contact Information for each Senator

Waging War

As I was reading Numbers chapter 31 this morning, I was thinking about the first two verses where it was the Lord who commanded them to “Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites.”

I tried to picture this in our day. Would God ever command a people to go to war today? Certainly the Lord has made it clear that there are instances where war may be justified.

Now we all know there is a war going on today. President Bush has declared war on terrorists. Would God have us as a nation avenge ourselves of the deaths that occurred on September 11th, 2001? Would God not have us seek out and destroy those whose desire is to destroy us as a nation? Images of Captain Moroni come to mind. Images of the Lamanites seeking out the Gandianton robbers come to mind.

What are your thoughts?

Word of Wisdom Insights

Losing It!: 5 Keys to Successful Weight Loss That Work

I’m reading a book right now entitled Losing It!: 5 Keys to Successful Weight Loss That Work. Although I’ve only read the first chapter so far, there were a few things I found interesting that I had never really though of and had some questions to.

First, D&C 89:11 – “Every herb in the season thereof, and every fruit in the season thereof; all these to be used with prudence and thanksgiving.”

The author points out: “The word herb refers to plants and vegetables that are nourishing and healthful for man. ‘In the season thereof’ does not mean we can eat fruit and vegetables only at a certain time. Rather, these words meant that fresh foods have a superior value, and that we should not eat decaying or damaged foods. If fruits and vegetables are properly preserved, which is a common luxury in today’s society, they should be enjoyed through the year.”

I had wondered what the term “in the season thereof” meant.

Second is in reference to eating meat “in times of winter, or of cold, or of famine.” (D&C 89:13)

Again, quoting the author: “The phrase ‘only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine’ has caused many people to think that meat should be eaten only in the winter. However, when the Word of Wisdom was revealed, methods for preserving meat were primitive. We now know that storing meat at appropriate temperatures is vital to prevent serious and even fatal food-bourne illnesses. Modern refrigeration now makes it easy for us to eat meat safely in any season.”

She points out that the key term for eating meat is moderation. The average recommended portion size by many nutrionist is about the size of a deck of cards.

“Lay Hold upon Every Good Thing”

In the April, 2006 Ensign, Elder Merrill J. Bateman wrote an article entitled, “Becoming a Disciple of Christ”. In it, he explains what it means to “lay hold upon every good thing”. I found it comforting since I tend to be one who tries to do everything all the time.

“To ‘lay hold upon every good thing,’… involves faith, repentance, participation in sacred covenants, companionship of the Holy Spirit, and enduring to the end. It does not mean laying hold on every good thing all at once. The principle is ‘line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little’ (2 Nephi 28:30). Also, the command to serve God ‘with all your heart, might, mind and strength’ (D&B 4:2) should leave one exhausted at the end of life, not midway through the journey. The Lord expects us to pace ourselves, to ‘run and not be weary, and … walk and not faint’ (D&C 89:20).”

Elder Bateman seems to be encouraging a steady consistent commitment to the gospel, rather than bursts of high-powered activity, followed by a lack of interest. An important point for all of us to remember.

Old Testament Jeopardy

Today is my wife’s last day teaching with me in Sunday School. She has received a new calling. We thought it would be fun to review what we have learned so far this year with a Jeopardy game. We didn’t take the time to phrase these as answers and require them to answer in the form of questions. I bought a varietly of candy bars and we’re going to give the winning team first choice.

  Pre-Mortal Life The Creation and The Fall Noah Abraham Joseph
100 What is God’s "work and glory"? (Moses 1:39) On what day was man created? (Moses 2:26-31) What were the names of Noah’s sons? (Gen. 6:10) What was Abraham’s name before the Lord changed it to Abraham? (Gen
Who was Joseph’s mother? (Gen 30:22-24)
200 Who was God’s first born spirit son? Who created the Earth? How many of each animal was Noah commanded to take on the ark? (Gen
Who was Abraham’s first born son? (Gen 16:15) Who purchases Joseph in Egypt? (Gen 39:1)
300 Who presented an alternative to God’s plan? One day to the Lord is how long for us? (Abraham 3:4) How many times did Noah send a dove from the ark? (Gen 8:8-12) How old was Abraham when Isaac was born? (Gen 21:5) What 3 people did Joseph interpret dream for? (Gen 40, 41)
400 How many of God’s spirit children chose to follow Satan’s plan? What instituted the fall? (Moses 4) What was the sign of the Lord’s covenant with Noah that He would
never again flood the earth? (Gen 9:13)
Abraham paid tithes to what great priesthood holder? (Gen 14:18-20) What was the interpretation of pharaoh’s dream? (Gen 41:25-32)
500 Why was Lucifer’s plan rejected? Give two reasons. How can we be redeemed from the fall? (Moses 6:50-54) What mountain did the ark land on when the flood waters receded?
(Gen 8:4)
What is the Abrahamic covenant? (Abraham 2:6-11) What are the names of Joseph’s two sons? (Gen 41:51-52)

  Pre-Mortal Life The Creation and The Fall Noah Abraham Joseph
100 "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." The sixth day Shem, Ham, & Japheth Abram Rachel
200 Jesus Christ Jesus – with Michael (Adam) through power & command of Heavenly
Clean beasts by seven, all else by 2 Ishmael Potipher
300 Lucifer/Satan 1000 years to us is one day to God (or one day on Kolob) 3 times 100 years old Pharaoh’s Butler, Pharaoh’s Baker, and Pharaoh
400 1/3 Adam & Eve partook of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, of
which they were commanded not to partake
bow in the sky (rainbow) Melchizadek Egypt would have 7 years of plenty followed by 7 years of famine
500 Because he sought to take away our agency and he wanted God’s glory By accepting the atonement of Jesus Christ (faith, repentance,
baptism, keeping the commandments)
Ararat God promise to Abraham 1) A promised land to live in. 2) A great
posterity. 3) The gospel of Jesus Christ and the priesthood for Abraham
and his posterity
Ephraim & Manasseh

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What is your “Dream Calling”

Among conversations I have with people, this topic will occassionally come up. What calling in the church do you most aspire to? For me it is “Stake Sports Director!” Why? Well, I’ve always loved sports. Growing up in a small town there wasn’t much else to do. I played every sport available to me. Now that I’m married with small kids, the opportunity to be involved with sports is much less available to me. It’s hard to leave my wife at home with some ornery babies to go “play.” I’m guessing that with this calling, when I go play, or I go referree, or I go “oversee” a sports program, I would simply be fulfilling my calling. Plus, I don’t know much about this, but I would assume there is not a lot early morning meetings that need to be attended or lessons to prepare each week – not that I mind that stuff…

So what is your “Dream Calling?”