Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Priesthood and Women: Are men and women equal in the church? What role does the priesthood play in a strong marriage?

Q: "Does it say in 1 Timothy that women should not be pastors?"

A friend of mine sent me this question some time ago in the wake of some controversy among a group of conservative churches concerning the role of women in the ministry. At the time she was interested in hearing what the Bible had to say on the question of whether or not women can hold the priesthood, and she was interested to see if my interpretation of certain passages coincided with that of certain factions within the debate. Recently I revisted my answer and expanded it to address an issue which more directly relates to women as they approach the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (both from within and from without). Namely the relationship between women and the priesthood (both in the time of Christ and His apostles as well as in this day and age), and the question of whether or not the seeming "exclusivity" of the priesthood constitutes sexism or gender discrimination. This is an issue that this particular friend had before she joined the church, and I know that she is certainly not alone in these misgivings. As I sought to address this question, I found that gaining an understanding of the role and function of the priesthood in an eternal marriage is crucial to finding the answer to these questions.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Hard Facts About Temple Marriage as a Requirement for Exaltation.

A friend of mine (who is fairly knowledgeable about the church, even though he is not a member) asked me a series of questions after his (member) girlfriend made him read my post on the importance of and necessity for eternal marriage in the temple. Most of his questions dealt with our views on life after death, and they resulted in my seven part series on that subject. After all was said and done, he pinned me down and made me give him this direct answer concerning the hard facts when it comes to the requirements for exaltation. I deliberately elected to employ language which I felt was appropriately vague in my previous post on temple marriage, however he needed a more definite answer. My first post on temple marriage is more eloquent and exhaustive, and so you might find it helpful to review my previous post on Temple Marriage.

Q: I feel like I am missing one thing to tie it all together. Where in scripture (besides D&C 76:50-54,69-70) does it say that you need the saving ordinances performed at the temple (namely marriage) to be allowed into the celestial kingdom?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Christ and the Healing Power of the Atonement

 Q: I was wondering if you have some good advice on how to strengthen your faith in Christ's ability to heal you?

A: My answer will be in two parts: The first will deal with Christ, and his power to heal all wounds (both physical and spiritual) through the atonement. The latter portion will deal with the faith that each individual must exercise in order that we might more fully partake of the power of the atonement. (p.s. I think some of the best stuff is at the end, so read the whole thing so it will make sense to you.)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Are You A Christian If You Don't Believe In The Trinity?

A friend of mine asked me to explain the doctrine of the trinity and its origins, and the nature of the Godhead, esp. according to the Bible. She asked me verbally at Bible study last week, so I will have to paraphrase her question.

Q: I have a friend that has several issues with the doctrines of the LDS church. One of them centers around your belief that God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are each separate beings. This does not conform to the doctrine of the trinity, which he holds to be one of the basic criteria for true Christianity. Where did the doctrine of the trinity (that says that God and Jesus and the Holy Ghost are the same being) come from? What does the Bible say about it?
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