You Can't Take This Away

February 27, 2020

There are certain things you can't take away from a person.  I reflect upon Daniel in the lion's den.  While the king forbade prayer, Daniel still trusted in God and prayed.  Even though he was arrested, his faith in God proved stronger than the king's authority.

The old saying, "You can't take it with you," only applies to physical things.  I believe we take our knowledge with us, and especially our knowledge of God and His works.

There's nothing anyone can show or say to me that will change the fact that I know the Book of Mormon came from God.


I don't share my experience with everyone because it's not my place to do so.  It robs them of the experience of gaining the knowledge I have of the Book of Mormon's authenticity and divine origins.  It also opens personal, private events to ridicule and speculation.  Unlike Joseph Smith and others who were commanded to share their experiences, myself and others have not received such instructions.

While that may sound like a cop-out, it's not.  It's no more a cop-out than me asking you to tell me about some of your most intimate thoughts and moments.  They are personal, private, sacred.

This said, I could spend hours pointing out little things in the Book of Mormon that Joseph Smith couldn't have known or intentionally placed there.  And, the odds of him just having "gotten lucky" are as astronomical as your throwing a Scrabble game in the air and having the tiles land perfectly, side by side, spelling your full name... or even your first name, for that matter.

It's the keystone of my religion.  That is to say, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is, as it claims to be, the Kingdom of God on earth.  It all hinges on the Book of Mormon.

Because the Book of Mormon is true, Joseph Smith had to be inspired from God to write it.  No other book speaks as much about Jesus Christ.  Not even the New Testament.  And, if you throw in references to the coming of Christ in the Old Testament, it still doesn't talk of Jesus Christ as much as the Book of Mormon does.

Nope.  Nobody can rob me of this knowledge.  

I really question people who blindly discount the book saying, "All I need is the Bible."

It's pretty foolish to say that without having at least read it cover to cover.  Even the Bible says the Lord hates a proud heart.  It takes a lot of pride (i.e. stubbornness) to refuse to read the Book of Mormon solely because you believe it supplants the Bible.  (Which it does not.  It complements the Bible and really makes the confusing writings of Isaiah and the Book of Revelations come to light.)

While there are plenty of scientific explanations as to why physical evidence of the stories in the Book of Mormon are difficult to find, none of that tops the spiritual evidence that comes through reading and studying it.  I've read it about 50 times - cover to cover.  Each time is like I'm reading it for the first time.  I find myself saying, "How in the world would Joseph Smith known that?"  And, "Nobody making up a story without computers could (fill in the story) without screwing up later on in the book."    In addition, these are things that are so subtle, you don't catch them unless you're reading with help from God.

People may complain about the policies of the Church, or the actions of certain leaders.  I think they are missing the point.  I can't excuse myself from this.  There are times I grumble and complain and lose sight of the important doctrines taught in the Book of Mormon.  (The Book of Mormon calls it the Doctrine of Christ.)

I've spent the last month away from Facebook.  It's been a dedicated fast as there were things happening on there that I found disturbing.  Namely, people whom I once thought to be strong examples in the church, leading people astray, or going astray themselves.  The month will be over next weekend.  

My take-away from my fast has been there are plenty of good things to share via Facebook, but for the most part, people are self-aggrandizing and espousing false or evil doctrines.  And, I don't excuse myself for having done some of this.  In my Book of Mormon reading the last few months I've started to realize this, and realize it is an area I need to change.

So, you'll see less of me on Facebook.  My physical challenges (which stem in to some mental challenges as well) makes Facebook somewhat of a hostile place.  I don't mean people are directing hostility towards me.  Anyone who has done that in the past is blocked, and if anyone does it moving forward I will block them too.  The hostility I'm talking about is the spreading of false notions, ideas and philosophies.   Social media has created a "guilty because we say so" environment for the public figures, and a schism between friends based on which side of the fence they stand on when it comes to the guilt/innocent belief.    That's just flat-out wrong.

Instead, I'm doing that I can to serve how and when I can, and I'm burring myself in my art.  When I do things that are too cerebral, I get cognitive dysfunction, and the same thing happens if I let things get to me.  (And, one of the ways to get to me is to just be plain stupid and ignore the facts.)

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