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>Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints History Lesson

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In subsequent articles, I will present five or six missionary lessons, albeit abbreviated because of space restraints. These lessons will pertain to missionary service as well. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a missionary church. That is, from early in its history, the Prophet Joseph Smith sent missionaries throughout the land, then later to foreign countries. First to Canada and then Mexico, but also Great Britain and Denmark. “Every member a missionary” became a reality, as this church has no paid ministry.
One reason I am teaching you about this basic doctrine before giving you the missionary lessons is to set clearly in your mind what kind of church you are studying. I felt that if I could present what it was missionaries studied you the non-member, or interested non-member, could envision what life would be like being a Latter-day Saint. This is not a church for the lazy or for one who does not like to study, enrich his/her life with new information and truth on a daily basis.
We have been taught that “The Glory of God is Intelligence,” and that no one can be saved in ignorance. Secondly, the Church of Jesus Christ is a missionary church, but all who join this church retain their free agency to choose which things to excel in and which to avoid. I smile when I say that because there are closet Mormons who don’t accept callings and, consequently, stop growing in the gospel.
If a bishop, stake president, Elder’s president, or High priest Leader asks someone to serve in any capacity it is considered to come from God. In other words, to reject such a calling would be a huge mistake. It would stop that person’s progression. That is how Mormons look at callings. Of course, no one is competent in every calling at first. He whom the Lord calls, the Lord prepares. So never fear. Callings are for the good of those called as well as for the good whom they serve. If it’s a missionary calling, the blessings are even greater.
The goal of a missionary is two fold:
1)      to bring the gospel of eternal happiness to the people. To help these contacts understand its precepts and to prepare them for baptism.
The name of the Church implies its members are saints In other words, good people. As people were baptized in the nineteenth century, many of them came to America to colonize the western part of the United States and to build up Zion.
The great Mormon hymnal “Come, Come Ye Saints” is a call for people of America and foreign lands to join the band of pioneers traversing the American plains to go to the Great Basin or Zion. It was also a reminder that traveling to what is now Utah was not their real aim. Their aim was to find peace and salvation in the Kingdom of God following death. Read the strains of the last verse of that great, moral- and faith-building song penned by William Clayton:

And should we die before our journey’s through,
Happy day! All is well!
We then are free from toil and labor too,
with the just we shall dwell;
But if our lives are spared again, to see the Saints, their rest obtain,
Oh how we’ll make this chorus swell, All is well, All is well.

 

 

If you visit Salt lake City, don’t forget to go to the Visitor’s Center on Temple Square and learn more about the Restored Gospel. Go to the Salt Lake Tabernacle for their 9:30 a.m. Sunday radio-TV broadcast. The music of the Tabernacle Choir and the Orchestra at Temple Square is absolutely stunning and spiritual.
Should you be able to live in the Salt Lake City area, I’m sure you will meet grand- children or great grandchildren of the Saints. We lived on Emerson Avenue. Across the street lived Maurice Clayton, grandson to that great pioneer scientist and writer William Clayton who wrote “Come, Come, Ye Saints.” Mormon and pioneer lore is abundant in the valleys of the Great Salt Lake and throughout Idaho, Arizona and parts of Colorado, Canada, Mexico, Nevada and California that were first colonized by Mormon pioneers who were given missions by the Prophet Brigham Young to go to these places and establish outposts, homes, farms, and cities on the outskirts of civilization. Mormon History is not only a fun avocation, but a very rewarding pursuit.
You will find that the Mormons were integral to the founding of much of America. There is not a more industrious and conservative, faithful people on the face of the earth today. They represent the best of America. They have learned the value of true sacrifice, hard work and devotion to gospel principles. They love their families and love to serve the Lord.
You will hear terms like “Zion” often as you bump shoulders with Mormon people. “Zion” today is where the pure in heart dwell. It could be America, Canada, Mexico, Finland, England, Denmark, Germany, Japan, the middle- east or wherever members live. But initially, it meant Missouri. When Mormons were persecuted and driven out of Missouri it took on the meaning of a future gathering place, because eventually the Saints will be called to pick up and leave—to  go back to  Missouri to prepare that area for the second coming of Christ. What is now Salt Lake City, Utah became the gathering place after the Mormons were driven out of Nauvoo, Illinois and today is headquarters for this fourteen-million-member church.
Much of the growth of the church today is coming from abroad. Though there are still thousands of convert baptism in America as well. There are about five or six million members in the United States, but South America doesn’t tail far behind as the Church builds temples wherever there are people so that the great redeeming work for the dead can continue.
You will find that doing work for the dead is a big part of how you can distinguish Mormons from non-Mormons. Latter-day Saints believe families are forever.
As families, people are sealed together in temple ordinances to create a multitude of ancestral lines going back to Adam and Eve, our first mortal parents. Latter-day Saints believe that this work of redeeming the dead must continue before our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, can return a second time. In April Conference, 2011, President Monson announced three new temples to be built in Rome, Italy, Meridian, Idaho, and Manaus, Brazil (in the Amazon Rain Forest).
Oh, how I love the Church. And I love my wife and family, and the church members. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is true. I testify to that fact. It is a living gospel, with revelations made available to all baptized people who have the Gift of the Holy Ghost and who pray to God for inspiration. That is why I am writing this article. The idea came this morning through inspiration.
No other church has taken family history and temple work for the living and dead to heart like the Latter-day Saints. This church has hundreds of family history centers –one in every stake center building across the globe. Also, it has more than 150 operating temples. It’s genealogy records are some of the most extensive in the world and are open to members and non-members alike.
In the April, 2011General Conference of the Church held in Salt Lake City and broadcast throughout the world via radio, television, cable, and the Internet, its prophet seer, and revelator, President Thomas S. Monson, said now they have temples all over the world. There isn’t a place in the world where Saints must travel more than 200 miles to attend a temple session. Additionally, there are 26 new temples in some form of construction or planning,
That alone is a daunting achievement, especially during times of economic downturn.
As a youth while I was living in Salt Lake City there were four temples in Utah, one in Canada at Cardston, and one in Hawaii. I grew up listening to a great prophet, President David O. McKay tell of the day when people all over the world would not only hear and see conference on television and radio, but would be able to attend a temple near them. It seemed like a dream then, but today it’s a reality. President Gordon B. Hinckley received a revelation late in his life while traveling in Mexico that if the Church would build smaller temples they could have many temples nearer to where temple-recommend-holders lived. What a marvelous reality that has become.

What Is The Purpose of A Missionary?

 

 

It is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel by faith in Jesus Christ and his Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end.

 

 

Consider This:

 

  • What is my purpose as a missionary?
  • What is the gospel?
  • Why must I teach with power and authority?
  • What is the message of the Restoration? Why is it so important?
  • What is my responsibility in helping others to become converted?
  • How will I know whether I am a successful missionary?

 

 

If you can’t find something in this web site, please hit the COMMENTS button and tell us how we can change. Your input is valuable to us, let us know your views, or merely give us a simple thumbs up that we are doing what we can to make this an enjoyable blog. At any rate, we want to hear from you. Publisher, Don White

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>It May Be Genetic: Is Lover Boy a Louse?

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Monogamy and Genetics

Researchers in Sweden recently announced what makes men good “husband material.” The key, they say, lies not in his religion, his morals, or even how much he loves his potential spouse—it’s how much he has in common with rodents.

A team at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm studied “552 pairs of male twins enrolled in Sweden’s ongoing Twin and Offspring Study.” The subjects “were currently in a relationship that had lasted at least five years.” Researchers then used tests, and interviewed the subjects’ spouses where possible, to assess the subjects’ ability to “bond and commit.”

The subjects were also tested for variants in what is known as the “vasopressin 1a gene.” Vasopressin is a peptide hormone thought to be “associated with species-typical patterns of social behavior” in many mammals.

Their “main finding,” published in the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science, was that there was an association between a particular gene variant and the ability to form “strong bonds” with their partners. They found that men carrying a variant called “334” scored “especially low” on a test called the “Partner Bonding Scale.” Translation: They find it harder to be faithful.

Not only that—women married to men with this variant scored “lower . . . on levels of marital quality” than women married to men without it.

What prompted the researcher to look for a correlation between the variant and fidelity? The behavior and neurochemistry of rodents—specifically voles, better known to Discovery Channel fans as “owl chow.”

According to lead researcher Hasse Walum, “studies in voles have shown that the hormone vasopressin is released in the brain of males during mating.” Voles with higher levels of vasopressin are more likely to “stick around and mingle with the female after” a sexual encounter.

As Dave Barry might write, I’m not making this up.

Walum said that the gene variant cannot “with any real accuracy be used to predict how someone will behave in a future relationship.” And Dr. John Lucas of Cornell told the Washington Post, it was “unlikely to be a single gene [at work]” in male bonding. Instead, it was “likely to be multiple genes that are expressed incompletely and interact with the environment . . .”

Genes, environment—what’s missing from the list? That’s right—religion, morality, virtue, culture. It’s difficult to imagine a better example of what’s known as “biological determinism.” It’s the idea behind Lucas telling the Post that “genes help drive much of human behavior” and that “the individual palette of emotions and behaviors” is “probably ‘hard-wired’ by our genetics.”

While he and others acknowledge a role for training, it’s too little, too late. In a culture that believes biology is destiny, telling people that something like fidelity is genetically driven is tantamount to calling it “optional.”

But the apostle Paul, with his “thorn in the flesh,” knew that what was good had little to do what came “naturally.”

It was a lesson that Christianity helped teach the West—that is, until the West decided that men were little more than animals—in this case, owl chow.

Today’s BreakPoint Offer
Subscribe today to the “Great Books Audio CD” series from Dr. Ken Boa and BreakPoint. Call 1-877-322-5527 to learn more.

For Further Reading and Information

E.J. Mundell, “’Bonding Gene’ Could Help Men Stay Married,” U.S. News, 1 September 2008.

“Is Lover Boy a Louse? It May Be Genetic,” Wired, 3 September 2008.

“‘Monogamy Gene’ Can’t Predict Behavior, Experts Say,” MSNBC, 3 September 2008.

“Reinventing Man: Biotechnology and the Human Future,” BreakPoint Commentary, 19 August 2008.

“The Divorce Generation: Finding Redemption,” BreakPoint Commentary, 12 May 2008.