By the Voice of My Servants

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In PEC meeting yesterday morning, the person giving the spiritual though, used D&C 1:38 to explain how what the general authorities say is from God.

What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.

It is very common among members of the Church to use this scripture to support the thought that everything the general authorities is as if the Lord was speaking. Yet this passage does not say that at all. What it does say is that whether the Lord chooses to fulfil His word through Himself or His servants, it is the same thing.

I don’t understand why members of the Church do this so often. Why do they unnecessarily extrapolate on scriptures to find ideas that are not there?

7 thoughts on “By the Voice of My Servants

  1. The logical proposition that people want this text to support is:

    IF a general authority says it THEN God has said it.

    What the text actually says is:

    IF God has said it THEN God will do it.

    People get confused because there’s a clarification that God can say things either personally or indirectly. But we need to be clear that this scripture only applies to things God says, not things general authorities say for themselves. Furthermore, the only way we can tell when GAs are speaking for God vs. themselves is by testing their words with the spirit.

    I think there are two reasons people produce this kind of misreading. First, some Latter-day Saints have little experience with careful reading of texts. Second, people sometimes really want to believe something, so they find a text that’s close enough to be distorted into what they want. (It’s comforting to think that the GAs are infallible voices for God. It’s just not true…)

  2. Interesting point, Kim. I hadn’t thought about that scripture in a while and forgot that people use it for that reason. I also like Roasted Tomatoes analysis.`

  3. how come you don’t celebrate Father’s Day? Our ward held no PEC oe Ward Council meetings yesterday so that the men could stay at home with their families. They did the same for Mother’s Day so the men could stay home to take care of kids so moms could have a break

  4. I don’t see the point in it. My children tell me every day they love me. They give me cards and homemade gifts all the time. I don’t see the point in my children having to tell me how much they love and appreciate me on a specific day every year.

    FWIW, we had PEC on Mother’s Day.

  5. used D&C 1:38 to explain how what the general authorities say is from God.

    I have been forming a theory over at the Thang that God lets his servants make up many of the temporal rules for us and as long as they are within certain boundaries God then backs them as if they were his idea originally. There seem to be gobs of scriptures that support this idea.

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