Sunday, April 20, 2008

Mormons & Polygamy

President Thomas S. Monson

I wanted to touch briefly upon a subject that has gained much attention lately in the media. First of all, know that the illegal and reprehensible actions that have gone on at the polygamous compound in Texas are NOT done by members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (a.k.a. Mormon or LDS Church). They are, however, a fundamentalist movement that is a break-off of the aforementioned religion -- my religion.

For those who have suffered untold pain, especially the children in this brutal and unfathomable time capsule-like Texas compound, I offer my heartfelt sympathies. It makes me upset and sad. It makes me angry. Who would dare violate the sanctity of a child's innocence except a wicked and evil man? Those who do evil in the name of religion -- any religion -- are only acting in behalf of the devil.

Recently I was asked to give a talk in church. I delivered that talk today. I spoke about prophets. I also spoke ever briefly upon the leader of the LDS Church, sustained by the church members as the president of the church as well its prophet, who did away with the practice of polygamy. His name was Wilford Woodruff. The following record was written by him and sustained by a unanimous vote on October 6, 1890.

Inasmuch as such laws have been enacted by Congress forbidding plural marriages, which laws have been pronounced constitutional by the court of last resort, I hereby declare my intention to submit to those laws, and use my influence with the members of the Church over which I preside to have them do likewise.

With that, the practice of polygamy was ceased among members of the LDS Church.

The Mormon church was founded in 1830. Polygamy was practiced among only a few members of the faith beginning around 1843 and on to the late 1800s. It was based on the fact that Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, as well as Moses, David and Solomon had many wives and concubines, and, save it be for David and his sin with Uriah's wife, it was justifiable before God. At times it has been allowed and, perhaps, it will again one day in the future.

Any Mormon who espouses, sympathizes or associates with those who practice polygamy today, however, stand in jeopardy of having their names and records removed from the Church. Excommunication for anyone engaged in such a thing is swift. That is not something Church officials take lightly.

You'll recall the warning Jesus gave his disciples: "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves."

He then gave a way to discern these false prophets.

"Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?" (Matthew 7:15-16)

There is a dire need to have continuing revelation today. That is God's pattern. He has chosen prophets since the beginning to lead the people. Yet "many are prone to garnish the sepulchers of yesterdays prophets and mentally stone the living ones." (Instructor, 95:527.) Others may simply have never known that a living prophet is alive today.

I fully believe and feel convinced by the Holy Spirit, which is a testifier of all truth, that President Thomas S. Monson is a true, living prophet of God today.

I will close with his most recent words:

I know without question, my brothers and sisters, that God lives. I testify to you that this is His work. I testify as well that our Savior Jesus Christ is at the head of this Church, which bears His name. I know that the sweetest experiences in all this life is to feel His promptings as He directs us in the furtherance of His work. ...I testify that each one of us can feel the Lord's inspiration as we live worthily and strive to serve Him. (Conference Report April 2008, "Looking Back and Moving Forward")

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Awesome son, I am so proud of you and your great example you are to everyone around you.
I love you and miss you.