Wednesday, September 23, 2015

"I Know These Things of Myself" by Elder Craig C. Christensen

Find this talk here.

  • Here again we're asking deacons why they admire Pres. Monson. Let's quit worshiping a man and worship God instead. "Why not speak of the atonement of Christ, and attain to a perfect knowledge of him?" says Jacob 4.
  • I'm glad he's getting into scriptural examples now. I suspect many of us could benefit from fasting and praying "many days" like Alma did, though what we're taught today about fasting discourages it greatly. Certainly we'd do well to pray for soft hearts, as Nephi did when trying to accept Lehi's vision. The modern church unfortunately tends to go after people who report having had visions, or even experiences wherein they "know for themselves" something the correlation committee might not approve of, even when they clearly understand those visions were for them alone.
  • Nephi's example of wanting to see what Lehi saw somewhat contradicts the idea that we should simply "follow the prophet".
  • I'm grateful for Elder Christensen's focus on knowing for ourselves. The gospel is a personal things.
  • We concentrate too much on "feelings" in the church, as Elder Christensen does here when he describes the seeds of a testimony. "The first Comforter or Holy Ghost has no other effect than pure intelligence," said Joseph Smith. That's not necessarily feelings. Moreover, the boy in Mark 9 who had an evil spirit approached the Savior, and the boy's first feeling was of being tossed on the ground and torn by the evil spirit. We can't trust feelings, unless perhaps we're sure we're not influenced at the time by evil spirits.
    • I agree, though, that we must not ignore spiritual evidence, and we must pray to continue to have more such evidence.
  • We get the "many sacred experiences with the Holy Ghost" line again. The seventy have an apostolic calling; to be an apostle is to witness that Christ was resurrected, by having seen him. That's what Oliver Cowdery told the first apostles when they were ordained, and it remains true. Instead, Elder Christensen testifies of President Monson.

No comments:

Post a Comment