Adam & Eve’s Transgression

In a message board I frequent, some discussion came up about Adam and Eve and their transgression. After some study, I came upon the following thoughts:

“And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat” (Gen 3:6)

What is interesting here is that it doesn’t say that she partook of the fruit because she wanted to disobey God. Rather she saw that the fruit would make her wise?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùor as the footnote suggests?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùgive her insight.

Naturally, gaining further insight or wisdom is not inherently bad; our church encourages us to gain further knowledge.

I wonder then if the transgression Eve committed was less the partaking of the fruit. I wonder if her transgression was more relying on her own faculties to gain further light and knowledge rather than waiting for God to give them to her.

I wonder of the parallel with her son Cain. We all know Cain gave a sacrifice to the Lord. I do not think the Lord rejected the sacrifice because it was a sacrifice. After all, his brother Abel offered a sacrifice often that was always accepted. I wonder if what the Lord rejected was the fact that Cain offered a sacrifice only because Satan commanded him too (Moses 5:18).

Pioneers

We had our requisite pioneer talk this past Sunday. Certainly not as boring as the four five-minute reports about the recent girls and boys camps, but predictable and boring nonetheless. Luckily for me, Gospel Doctrine had some uplifting moments and I hadn’t decided to be perturbed and pack up right after Sacrament. I am not sure if it all balanced out or not, but I did feel uplifted at some points yesterday and I did get to take the Sacrament, so I am not about to write it off yet.

Anyhow, on to my point. The main speaker said, among other tidbits, at one point that we should be grateful for the pioneers of southern Alberta.

Why?

I am not related to any of them (well, not outside of marriages within my wife’s family). They didn’t really help establish Church doctrine or practise. The Church in southern Alberta has not made me the person I am today.

In actuality, I am more grateful for the pioneers in Regina than I am for the ones in southern Alberta. It’s those pioneers who directly influenced my life.

The first LDS meetinghouse I ever attended was one built by the Regina pioneers. My parents joined the church partly because they were befriended by Regina pioneers (or their children). I was taught in Primary by Regina pioneers (and their descendants). I was there when two Regina branches became two Regina wards nearly thirty years ago. My own parents were pioneers.

The list, of course, goes on.

Can’t say a single one of those things about southern Alberta. Nope. I am about as grateful for southern Alberta pioneers as I am for Ontario pioneers (well, maybe less, since John Taylor was from Ontario). I definitely see no reason why I should be grateful for them.

Succor

This scripture came up today in Gospel Doctrine.

…he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities. (Alma 7:12)

I find this interesting. Alma the Younger says here that Jesus took upon himself our own infirmities so He may know how to succour us. It always amazes me the steps the Savour took to help us. Not only has he sacrificed Himself that we may be washed clean of our sins and live again with glorified bodies, He has made it possible somehow to completely understand what we experience when we go through infirmities.

Despite having never committed adultery, He knows the pains of guilt the adulterer feels and the feelings of anger that run through the heart of the adulterer’s spouse. He knows the grief of those who have lost their beloved. He knows the sadness that accompanies heartbreak. He knows the feelings of abandonment, neglect, pain, despair, jealousy and others all without having to experience the normal actions that produce those feelings.

This sort of selfless loves reminds me of another passage in Mosiah 4, where King Benjamin counsels with those present, in part, the following:

…ye yourselves will succor those that stand in need of your succor…(v. 16)

Simon Southerton Promoting Book Again

Simon Southerton, who is struggling hard to be a critic of the Church in a long-since dead area is back again. Maybe his book had low sales last year, so he is trying to drum up some more buyers.

Anyhow, The Age had this, in part, to say:

Last year he published a rebuttal of the Book of Mormon teachings that Native American and Polynesian ancestors came from ancient Israelite tribes who had migrated to the Americas centuries before Christ.

In all the years I’ve read the Book of Mormon?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùin all the times I’ve read it from cover to cover?¢‚Ǩ‚ÄùI must have entirely skipped over the part where it teaches “Native Americans” and “Polynesians” are descended from Israelite tribes.

Maybe if Southerton focused more on what was in the Book of Mormon and less on how members of the Church have traditionally extrapolated the Book of Mormon, it wouldn’t be an issue that he “is facing possible ex-communication”.

I wonder why didn’t wait another week. If he had, he could have done double duty by bringing about press for his new book, and celebrating the first anniversary of the last time he brought this up.