Joel Skousen on ‘Visions of Glory’ and Denver Snuffer

source: http://www.latterdayconservative.com/fi … kousen.mp3

I have a lot of respect for Joel Skousen. I enjoy listening to his analysis on current events and conspiracy. In the Q&A section of a recent presentation he gave (on Dec 5, 2014), he shared his views on ‘Visions of Glory’ and Denver Snuffer. This is my transcription of the relevant portion:

Start [2:35:08]

Audience member: When you said dreams and visions are you talking about the book “Visions of Glory” by John Pontius?

Skousen: Yeah, I don’t believe Visions of Glory is of the Lord, even though there’s a lot of truths in it. Satan deals in truths to get you to believe the curveballs and the philosophy. I’ve read it. I got a very strong spiritual impression that it’s not of the Lord. There are some very specific doctrinal errors in it, but the biggest thing that came really strong to my mind is this is too much revelation . . .

Audience member: For one person. . .

Skousen: Too much revelation. The Lord . . . It violates the test of earth life – to be getting monthly revelation to a person when the brethren have very few themselves. I’m not saying that the Lord can’t do that because you can quote the scriptures, “your children shall dream dreams” and all of that and everyone that believe in dreams will quote that scripture. But they fail to realize the Lord changes the game sometimes.

In the Last days you’re going to be required not to walk by major miracles and revelations, visions, but walk by the Holy Spirit. And Satan will be given great power to show you great miracles and dreams and visions, so be very wary of any person who preaches to you the doctrine, like Denver Snuffer, that everybody ought to see the face of the Christ, that everybody ought to have their calling and election made sure. That is not true.

There’s nothing worse than going and pounding at the door of the Lord and saying, “I want a direct revelation and my calling and election made sure.” Those who really do, know their position, or don’t need to ask for that. And I don’t care if Joseph Smith said it. Joseph Smith said and he believed that everybody could see the face because he did, but he didn’t realize the Lord didn’t intend everybody. And it would give Satan a great deal of hold upon people – to seek for revelation. I don’t think anyone ought to seek for open revelation. If the Lord decides to do it let him do it, but just seek for understanding and make your prayers known to the Lord, but don’t ever say, “I want a vision,” or “I want to see something.” You’re just asking for the wrong source. And I know four or five very great individuals including one of my uncles (not Uncle Cleon) who went out to the wilderness, fasting and praying, to get a revelation and they got it alright, but it wasn’t of the Lord. So be very careful – that’s my warning.

End [2:37:37]

Those are some bold words (especially after I made them bold). When you read Joseph Smith, he actually equates salvation with gaining knowledge/revelation:

“A man is saved no faster than he gets knowledge, for if he does not get knowledge, he will be brought into captivity by some evil power in the other world, as evil spirits will have more knowledge, and consequently more power than many men who are on the earth. Hence it needs revelation to assist us, and give us knowledge of the things of God.”

I wish Joel had said what this implies – something along the lines of: “Joseph Smith was wrong about the mechanism for how we are saved. I am agreed with the Brethren, that revelation needs to be fairly sparse (some undefined amount, but less than monthly) or else it is of the Devil (because the Lord in the last days has changed the game and only Satan can give revelations (equal to or greater than) monthly). Joseph Smith, Peter (2 Peter 1:10), Denver Snuffer (if that’s what you are into), and The Lord (D&C 93:1) will lead you into error and deception. You must choose between them and what I am teaching now. Your salvation depends on it.”

As I stated previously, I really admire a lot of Joel’s work. But despite my admiration for the man, his view is in direct contrast with my own on the mechanism for how we are to be saved. I think it is in direct contrast with the scriptures as well (Alma equates not knowing the mysteries with the chains of hell, look it up). He admits it’s in direct contrast with Joseph Smith’s view.

There are a million voices competing for our attention and they are not all compatible. We ought to (ironically) follow Joel’s warning – be very careful.

Trust Fall!
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A Dream on Lecture Five

I’ve skimmed through a bit of Lucy Mack Smith’s History of Joseph Smith by His Mother. It’s on my reading list. I should probably make it a higher priority. One thing that stuck out to me was a series of dream/visions of her husband Joseph Smith, Sr. before “the restoration.” They follow a format. He is taught and led by a “guide” in these dreams. We can see this is a pattern in many revelatory writings, both canonical and pseudepigraphal.


 

I’ll admit I’ve had a couple dreams that follow this pattern. I intend to share others as this blog goes on (for now I think I’ve had a grand total of 2 views, which I guess let’s me fly under the radar).

Maybe half a year ago was the most recent of these dreams.

I met a man who I recognized. He delivered a message to me. He quoted the description of God in the Lectures on Faith – Lecture 5. “The Father [is] a personage of spirit, glory, and power, possessing all perfection and fullness.” He then explained this to me.

He said (in essence, of course):

The glory of God is intelligence. Intelligence is part of his being.

God also has a spirit. Spirit is part of his being.

Power represents the resurrection and the physical aspect of his being.

And then my dream ended. But I woke and couldn’t get it out of my mind.

It was odd. The association of “power” with “physical nature” had never crossed my mind. That morning I looked through the scriptures, trying to confirm this new idea that was given to me.

I found a few scriptures.

(Matthew 28:16-18) Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Here Jesus connects his resurrection from the dead with acquiring “all power . . . in heaven and in earth.”

(Romans 1:4) And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.

Paul makes the same connection. “Power” comes “by the resurrection from the dead.”

Additionally:

(John 10:18) No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

(2 Corinthians 13:4) For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.

(Mosiah 15:20) But behold, the bands of death shall be broken, and the Son reigneth, and hath power over the dead; therefore, he bringeth to pass the resurrection of the dead.

There have been a couple more I’ve found, but these are the most clear. Power of course is used in other senses (power of the Holy Ghost, power to speak, etc.) so it would be improper to write one definition into all uses.

As I’ve pondered on this dream, I am saddened to see that The Lectures on Faith have been removed from our scriptures. I think because the description of God made the church uncomfortable. You can find website after website quoting the above passage, saying Joseph Smith was a fraud – he changed his definition of God from a personage of spirit to a personage of flesh. Then comes website after website of apologists, claiming continued revelation (to bolster their dogma of a living prophet).

I won’t lie, the first time I read the Lectures on Faith (in 2009), this section did bother me. But I chose to wait for further light and knowledge from God, rather than trusting critics or apologists or discarding what Joseph Smith said. This should be the pattern in our lives.

It saddens me that those that removed the Lectures on Faith, did not understand the Father is indeed a being of “personage of spirit, glory, and power, possessing all perfection and fullness.”

Estates – Part III – A Parable Unbecoming

So God was sick of his kids that He loved so much. He just wanted to be an empty-nester again. Things just hadn’t been the same between him and the misses. He thought the upcoming 10 aeon anniversary might be able to spice things up a bit. Before the next batch of kids, that is.

“So it’s time to leave! Now! Everybody, get out! I’d prefer it if you went to college like me or your older brother and made something of yourself (he’ll help you in your studies). But if you aren’t really into that, you still need to leave. I don’t care if you become the lowest of the low, scum, meth-head, hobo. You have to leave . . . now! “Only when you graduate and make as much income as me or Jesus, you are welcomed back into my home (of course you need to be married to someone with the same income as well). “If you aren’t valiant in your studies, I’m sorry. I may send Jesus to visit you from time to time. He’ll make sure you don’t apply to any better jobs. You missed your one chance to get in my good graces. “If you dropped out of college, you’re SOL, buddy. No child of mine will be scum. Go hang out with your homeless meth-head siblings you sympathize with so much. Jesus, you aren’t allowed to visit these drop-out flunkies.” ___________________________________________________

Oy vey! This is quite the mess.

Hopefully, we gained an appreciation for how confusing this estates business can be. There’s more questions than answers. But ask and ye shall receive. So I’ve asked plenty. Maybe, all of you will ask a few more questions. . . Like, “Please, God, can you get the image of that man in the french maid outfit out of my mind?” “No.”

Estates – Part II – God’s French Man-Maids

So let’s move on to option 2. I prefer it, partially because of Jude 1:6.

And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

Here the estate is a habitation. Apparently God owns it and can kick whoever he pleases out. I guess God is either a banker or the renter. Two types of people I do not get warm fuzzies from. So let’s say an estate is a home.

_____________________________________________

Shiz! It’ll be forever before any bank will lend to me again. My credit is ruined!

How do you keep your home? Make regular payments? On time? A 40-year-mortgage?

What if the bank forecloses on your home, because you get behind? Does the bank now sell it to someone else? Is there more than one way to keep it?

Is there more than one way to lose it? What if it burns down?

What if you want to sell it? You need more room?

Can you afford a second home/estate? Do you need a second home? Why do you need a second home if your first home meets your needs? Did your family grow? Do you then rent or sell the first home? Are you now managing your old property?

______________________________________________________________________

Maybe keeping a home doesn’t even mean it’s your home or dwelling place. Maybe we mean “keep” as in “upkeep.” Like keeping it in good repair, clean, tidy. Maybe that’s our job. And when we do a good job, our clientele will expand to taking care of another estate, Maybe?

Try to get this image out of your mind!

Me? Time to change the linen on God’s bed, good thing he keeps the toilets clean, he’s a good shot.

Estates – Part I – Brown-nosing Fop Man-Gods

And there stood one among them that was like unto God. And he said unto those who were with him:

We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell; And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;

And they who keep their first estate shall be added upon; and they who keep not their first estate shall not have glory in the same kingdom with those who keep their first estate; and they who keep their second estate shall have glory added upon their heads for ever and ever.

_____________________________________________________________________

Alright, I have a question I’d like to explore. It confuses the tar out of me. What the hell is an “estate”? There are two of them apparently (maybe more?). And how the f@*% does one “keep their estate”? I know the church has some really simple plain and precious truths regarding this matter (here), but I’d like to explore some other options in the next few posts.

Okay, first up to bat: defining an estate. There are two main ones we’ll consider.

(1) social standing or rank especially of a high order, a social or political class; specifically:  one of the great classes (as the nobility, the clergy, and the commons) formerly vested with distinct political powers
(2)  possessions, property; especially :  a person’s property in land and tenements
Just based on the above passage, either is just as likely.
[Option 1] How do you keep your high class? Don’t be a traitor? So God is organizing an elite aristocracy, and if you brown nose enough he’ll give you more dignitary titles.
The Plan of Salvation – Eternal Progression?

This explanation is often how we look at the matter, but maybe a little short-sighted, as our progression comes at the expense of constantly kissing some God’s ass or that of His one and only anointed servant upon the face of the earth. It actually may explain the current state of fast and testimony meeting. Let’s abandon this line of reasoning before I go down the path of puns about asses, farts, and crap.

Another Fun Quote from a Church Manual

This time from the Student Manual of the Doctrines of the Gospel (2000) class.

This one is shocking to me because it is boldly teaching the Adam-God Theory/Doctrine. How this got through correlation and the committees of the church, we will never know! How does one notify the church it is publishing one of the seven deadly heresies? (#6 actually)

From Chapter 29 The Importance of the Family

“To those who are barren and unable to bear offspring, our deepest sympathy is extended. Let us quote for the consolation of those who are not blessed with the procreative power a statement from the Prophet Brigham Young:

“‘Let me here say a word to console the feelings and hearts of all who belong to this Church. Many of the sisters grieve because they are not blessed with offspring. You will see the time when you will have millions of children around you. If you are faithful to your covenants, you will be mothers of nations. You will become Eves to earths like this, and when you have assisted in peopling one earth, there are millions of others still in the course of creation. And when they have endured a thousand million times longer than this earth, it is only as it were at the beginning of your creation. Be faithful and if you are not blessed with children in this time, you will be hereafter.’ (Deseret News, Vol. 10, p. 306, October 14, 1860.)

Not this shit again!

If you’ve found anything that makes you take a triple-take on lds.org, post it in the comments. I’d love to see some other gems we can mine from lds.org.