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Showing posts from January, 2013

Rambling Thoughts on First Vision Study Aids

There are some who are disposed to boredom or complacency in the Church because we “always talk about the same things.” And, that is true, we do. But if this bores you, I would suggest you are just not engaging the topics enough on your own. There is wealth of knowledge that can be learned about every subject we study in Church, and an awful lot of supplementary material in terms of scholarly books and articles, which can help you in digging deeper.
Take for instance, the First Vision. Unless my ward or your ward has somehow already managed to get off course for the year, you should be talking about the restoration, with some particular focus on Joseph Smith and his First Vision this week in Sunday School. Instead of rolling your eyes and thinking “We have all heard this story before…” I would encourage you to explore something new about the vision or its historical background.

Understanding the Doctrine and Covenants, the Purpose of History in Church, and "Hidden" History One More Time

The sixth paragraph of the “Explanatory Introduction” to the Doctrine and Covenants explains what is one of my favorite things about this particular book of scripture. “These sacred revelations were received in answer to prayer, in times of need, and came out of real-life situations involving real people.” The relative recentness of these real-life situations brings a forceful sense of reality to the revelations that, I must confess, is sometimes lacking for me when studying more ancient scripture. I feel that because these people had their prayers answered, and their needs met by a responsive God, then I too can pray to God and receive answers; when I need God, he will be there. My own life experience has only confirmed this reality.