November 17, 2016
Dear Copper Hills 8th Ward Members,
Hello everyone. This is my 12th postcard. I’ve received a few postcards back, with the label, “refused.” It’s your right to be unkind, but it’s my hope that you aren’t also rejecting the main point of all my postcards, to defend and sustain the teachings of 2 Nephi 32:5.
My postcards have all focused on this concept taught by the church, in the Book of Mormon, considered the most correct of any book on earth, 2 Nephi 32:5 states, “if ye will enter in by the way, and receive the Holy Ghost, it will show unto you all things what ye should do.”
My postcards have come to you, three times each year, over the past four years. Because my mailing list is outdated, you might be receiving them, and yet, not be members of the LDS church. If this is the case, please pardon me, or feel free to read what I have to say.
Years ago, while serving as a missionary for the LDS church, for the last six months of my mission, I was assigned as a “traveling trainer.” Through teaching all elders of that mission to believe in their own inspiration, instructing them to allow the Holy Ghost to show them all things they should do, the number of people who joined the church, tripled.
It’s been the focus of my life, through the atonement of Christ, to receive the Holy Ghost, just as we’re instructed to do at baptism, but there’s a catch, according to church leaders, which contradicts the teachings of 2 Nephi 32:5.
Also, by the way, there are other scriptures which echo this same concept, including, but not limited to, D&C 45:57, D&C 50:10-25, Mosiah 3:19, Moroni 10:5, JST Mark 9:40-48, John 16:13, Romans 8:1-14, 2 Corinthians 3:6-18, and Jeremiah 31:31-34.
Contrary to these scriptures, church leaders claim we’re supposed to place a higher priority on obeying their voice, than on obeying the still small voice, that when in conflict, we’re to obey the leader, rather than our own inspiration.
They believe this, because it’s been declared that it’s impossible for a prophet to lead the church astray, but isn’t the prophet actually leading us astray, through lying to us, by testifying that the Book of Mormon is true, and then denying its teachings when it comes to disciplinary church policy?
Nine years ago, because I embraced the teachings of 2 Nephi 32:5, because I wanted to be led exclusively by the Holy Ghost, I was excommunicated from the church.
But, was it right for the church to expel me?
Was I apostate, or is the church in a state of apostasy to this concept?
So, how can we discern between the still small voice of God and the deceiving voice of Satan?
It seems that church leaders lack this understanding, for if they had this understanding, wouldn’t they teach members how to discern, so that they may always be led by the Holy Ghost?
A simple, but profound way to determine if God is speaking to us, verses Satan, is to think about how we feel when ideas are being presented to our minds.
When God is speaking to us, we feel good, and while he's in us, we’re not bothered by what other people have or haven’t done.
When Satan is speaking to us, we feel bad, and while he's in us, we’re bothered by what other people have or haven’t done.
For example, I’m thinking that those who’ve returned letters and postcards to me, with the label, “refused,” are hearing Satan’s voice, because they’re bothered by what I’m doing, for if God was speaking to them, they’d feel only love for me, and might even feel to send me a nice response.
Here’s another way to look at it.
God’s voice always leads us to have more humility, where we feel more and more love for others, as we, like Christ, consider ourselves to be more and more servants of others, rather than masters of them.
Satan’s voice always leads us to have more pride, where we feel more and more bothered by the actions of others, where we feel to condemn, judge, and discipline others, where rather than serving others, we’re led to be their masters.
So far, and I’d rather that the truth about this would be different, for the past nine years, as I’ve sought to reason with church leaders, all they’ve wanted to do with me, has been to establish themselves as masters over me, rather than they wanting to serve me, and so, because I believe Satan is in them, I haven’t wanted to embrace or comply with their counsel to me.
Also, please consider how I believe Satan is seeking to establish a counterfeit peace in the lives of those who are prideful, where they’re deceived into believing God is with them, because of this false peace.
Here’s how it works.
Satan comes to people. And, people feel bad, because of his presence. But, because Satan doesn’t want them to know that he’s causing the bad feeling, he lies to them, telling them that they feel bad, because of what someone else has or hasn’t done.
Then, when people seek to rid themselves of the bad feeling, through judging, punishing, or disciplining the other person, Satan will withdraw, to enforce the idea that the bad feeling actually came from the behavior of the other person, and so the judgmental person is thus led to believe that peace is found through judging and condemning others.
Often times, those who feel bad, who seek to feel better through judging and condemning others, will even resort to threatening others, which happened in my case, as church leaders threatened to take away church privileges if I didn’t obey them without question.
My alleged sin, which church leaders believed warranted excommunication, was that I wouldn’t stop writing letters to the general authorities of the church, about questions I had regarding a church position. They never asked if I felt inspired of God to send the letters. I did feel inspired to.
Also, I didn’t obey their request to cease from discussing these concerns, but continued to speak with two close friends and three family members about it, and again, I felt inspired of God to do this.
It was claimed that I publicly taught false doctrine, that discussing my concerns about a church position with two close friends and three family members constituted, publicly, and was it really false doctrine, because the ideas that I was giving voice to, were actually taught by President Kimball, and are quite publicly displayed on www.lds.org?
Also, I was accused of publicly criticizing church leaders, because my wife mailed out a postcard, where she asked ward members to stop asking our children why we weren’t attending church, where she explained that we weren’t attending, because church leaders weren’t answering our questions.
Even if I had been responsible for sending out the postcard which criticized church leaders, stating that, “they’re not answering our questions,” is this sin? Isn’t it possible that maybe my wife was, in fact, inspired of God to speak out? Or, is speaking out something that God would never inspire?
According to church policy, when all these charges are combined, it constitutes apostasy.
Anyway, getting back to the counterfeit peace offered by Satan.
In regards to those people who’ve returned my letters and postcards, labelled, “refused.” I’m certain they felt a sense of peace after taking this action, after lifting themselves up in pride, after voicing their condemnation of me in this way, but I’m also certain that Satan will return to them, that they’ll need to condemn me, or someone else, again and again, in order to continue to feel at peace, until the time that their pride is so perfected, that Satan will remain in them, even after they judge and condemn others.
In other words, this counterfeit peace will eventually be taken from them, completely.
On the other hand, those inspired of God, who enjoy God’s peace, are always led to deeper levels of humility, to forgive those they’ve judged, and even to refrain from judging others in the first place.
These are they who are at peace, no matter what anyone else does or doesn’t do, who are like Christ, whose peace remained with him, even though he was tortured, bled, and died because of our sins.
While he atoned for our sins, rather than feeling to judge and condemn us, rather than being bothered by what we have or haven’t done, he only felt love for us, and those who are led by God, shown all things they should do by the Holy Ghost, also only feel love for others, even for their enemies.
Does all this make sense?
Lately, every ten days, I’ve been sending a letter to the first presidency, asking them to please acknowledge, is 2 Nephi 32:5 is true, or not? I’ve sent 43 requests for this clarification.
I’ve also asked the same question of all other general authorities and church officers.
But, all my requests have been ignored, and many have been returned to me, with the label, “refused.”
In my mind, it only makes sense to me, that church leaders are in Satan’s trap of seeking for this false peace that I’ve explained above, and because they can’t or won’t humble themselves, they can’t or won’t bring themselves to acknowledge the truth of 2 Nephi 32:5, which takes away their power, because it empowers each of us.
Here’s another thing to think about.
In D&C 121:39-46, Joseph Smith stated that it’s the nature and disposition of almost all men as soon as they’re given a little authority as they suppose, that they’ll begin to exercise unrighteous dominion, where they’ll seek to exercise control over others, which constitutes the end of their priesthood.
But, when was the last time you heard of a church leader being disciplined for exercising unrighteous dominion? If it’s in their nature, that “almost all men” will do this, then certainly this should be the leading cause for disciplinary action in the church.
Well, wouldn’t it stand to reason, that maybe Satan has deceived the church into practicing unrighteous dominion without restraint, where judgment, discipline, and obedience to church leaders has replaced the concept of people being led by the Holy Ghost in all things?
We’re clearly taught, in the New Testament, that Jesus didn’t want his apostles to exercise authority over his followers, and yet, the LDS church openly does this, even giving the title to their leaders, general “authority.”
I’m thinking, that church leaders are being visited by Satan, that they feel bad because he’s with them, where Satan is lying to them, telling them that they feel bad because of what members are or aren’t doing, which causes them to use disciplinary measures on members, which after they do, they feel peace again, because Satan withdraws, to trick them into believing that peace comes by judging.
And, I’m thinking the cycle continues, as those who are disciplined, also feel bad, and end up doing the same to people in their stewardships, until all people only feel good inside, after they’ve judged and condemned others, rather than feeling good inside, because they love others.
Didn’t Jesus say, “I came not into the world to condemn the world, but to save it?” Are we to be led in all things by the Spirit of love, which is the Holy Ghost? Or, are we to be led by the judgment and condemnation of our leaders? Which is the true path of peace?
What do you think?
Is 2 Nephi 32:5 true, or not?
Why is this question so hard for the church to answer?
If you have any questions, please let me know.