Monday, August 4, 2014

Church defines apostasy

The Church released a statement onto the internet recently about priesthood. The final paragraph says this:

"Simply asking questions has never constituted apostasy. Apostasy is repeatedly acting in clear, open and deliberate public opposition to the church or its faithful leaders, or persisting, after receiving counsel, in teaching false doctrine."

Here is one rendering of that statement:

Asking "correlated" questions, and contemplating correlated answers has never constituted apostasy.  In fact that (and only that) is what we want you to do.  It will keep you from opposing faithful church leaders, even when what is said is wrong.  You can oppose the seemingly unfaithful dead leaders, like the Church currently does with past leaders who said things that no longer agree with current teachings and doctrine.  Just don't oppose current leaders.  You see, public image is everything.  And if your public views don't correlate, and we tell you they don't, that's false doctrine and apostasy.  

They stated "public opposition to the church".  Is the Church the same as the Gospel?

What does "the church" even mean?  Does it mean my ward?  My stake?  The building we meet in?  Does it mean the church office building? Does it mean the 14 million members?  Just the active ones?  Does it mean the Corporation of the President which deposits our tithing checks?  Really, what is "the church"?   Is it the first presidency and quorum of the 12?  The scriptures define this of course but more often than not they are not considered the standard anymore so much as the Church newsroom.

Anyway back to the statement.  It's "public" opposition that constitutes apostasy.  Why would something be apostasy only when public?  Isn't the public only a side effect of the internal?    

The article also says it's apostasy to do the above things against The Church's "faithful leaders".  Was Brigham Young a faithful leader?  Because the Church openly, deliberately and publicly opposes and denounces things he taught (link).  That makes the Church apostate by their own definition. They deliberately, publicly, and unapologetically condemn things Brigham Young said and taught.  He was one of the Church's faithful leaders wasn't he?  The Church denounces at least 2 categories of his teachings as false (polygamy and blacks and the priesthood).  

Here's what the website LDS.org has to say about Apostasy. (link)

We now live in a time when the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored. But unlike the Church in times past, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will not be overcome by general apostasy. The scriptures teach that the Church will never again be destroyed (see D&C 138:44; see also Daniel 2:44).   

Although there will not be another general apostasy from the truth.....

The church will not be overcome by general apostasy it says.  Pretty bold statement.  I suppose we can sit back, relax, take it easy, and live more carefree?  After all we've been given the immunity idol like on survivor.  If that isn't soothing falsehoods I don't know what is.  When has any people, in any age, been immune from apostasy? But the article says our day is not going to fall to such things.

In my view it seems a wee bit prideful to say that YOUR day, (generally speaking) is so very far superior to everyone in the past, that you, (generally) are just so special, so favored, so righteous, that your contemporaries are exempt from falling under general apostasy?  Seems like the kind of stuff that blinds people.  Especially considering the whole church was put under condemnation in a revelation in D&C 84:55.  Yet we proclaim apostasy immunity as a church.  The statement could possibly fit like a glove onto the very vanity and unbelief D&C 84:55 speaks of.

Rather than exempt status, The Book of Mormon prophesies more of the opposite. The author of this website did quote a scripture a little later on, that was somewhat related.  But if you look up the scripture about the kingdom of God never being destroyed, it does not really support the idea of modern Mormon's being incapable of falling into apostasy.  

Is the LDS church the same thing as the kingdom of God?  Is the Corporation of the President the same thing as the LDS church?  (It's a corporation sole by the way).

Jesus said: "My kingdom is not of this world".

Corporations are of this world, and can certainly be destroyed.  The LDS Church has been dis-incorporated once already. By the Edmunds Tucker act in 1887.  It "dissolved" the corporation and the assets were "given to other people".  

The opposite of apostasy is coming to know, and staying faithful to Christ.  Somewhere along the line following the prophet became the focus instead.  Not everyone, but some appear to have this as their primary focus.  Every fast and testimony meeting I attend, no matter in what state or city proclaims the truthfulness of the churches leaders.  President Monson has some great things to say.  No doubt about it.    

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