Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Scientific Discussion with a Stake President

Two months ago I had a young man come into my office wanting to discuss some of the theories of science as they relate to Mormonism.  As a man well versed in science and the workings of the Lord I welcomed him into my office for such a discussion.  Tony admitted he was struggling with his testimony by the things he was learning at school.  As you will see from our ensuing discussion I was able to guide him back to the truth and set him on the straight and narrow way.  Below is more or less how our conversation went after the normal pleasantries;

PP (President Paternoster): Tony you come from a long line of faithful priesthood holders.  I perceive that you are a very intelligent young man and I look forward to sending you out on a mission in a few months as you follow the example of your older brothers and sister.  Tell me exactly what it is that is bothering you. 

T (Tony): Well President, I have been learning about the history of the Earth and the teacher said things that would indicate that death has been on the Earth from well before the time of Adam.  I was taught in seminary that it was Adams Fall that brought death into the world.  Adam lived around 6,000 years ago.  I’m just not sure who to believe.  

PP: Tony this is an excellent question and you are absolutely right that Adams Fall brought death into the world.  If you will turn with me to the Bible dictionary we can read about this:
"Latter-day revelation teaches that there was no death on this earth for any forms of life before the fall of Adam. Indeed, death entered the world as a direct result of the fall (2 Ne. 2: 22; Moses 6: 48).”

To readers of this blog below is the url to the lds.org website which has this statement: http://lds.org/scriptures/bd/death?lang=eng&letter=d

Tony from 2 Ne2:22 we learn that if Adam had not transgressed he would have remained in the Garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.

Tony please consider the following statement and clarification on the above scripture made to the students at the Lords university (BYU) by an apostle even Bruce R. McKonkie.  Keep in mind Tony that many of the students present were studying sciences at the time:
"My reasoning causes me to conclude that if death has always prevailed in the world, then there was no fall of Adam that brought death to all forms of life; that if Adam did not fall, there is no need for an atonement; that if there was no atonement, there is no salvation, no resurrection, and no eternal life; and that if there was no atonement, there is nothing in all of the glorious promises that the Lord has given us."

T: Wait wait so if death occurred before Adam then there was no Fall or Atonement and Christianity is a false religion! Is that what he was saying?

PP: Tony that is exactly what he was saying.  And he was a prophet, seer and revelator in every sense of the word.  Are you willing to give up Christianity and the chance to serve a mission based on the theories of scientists?

T: No of course not President.

PP: Very well then.  Tony I would counsel you to ponder the things we have discussed today, particularly the scriptures in the Book of Mormon and come back to report in two weeks so I can see how you feel. 

T: I will do that President.

PP: Thank you Tony.  Oh and Tony never feel ashamed to speak up in class if what they are teaching is incorrect.  Always stand up for your beliefs.

T: Uh OK    

9 comments:

Heather said...

I love this blog.

MCS said...

I loved the "uh ok." Hilarious!

Anonymous said...

President,
Thank you for given me the courage to stand up for what I believe in. I hope you can share with me and the other brothers and sisters more help and advice to help us further our lives in faith.

Anonymous said...

I cannot tell if this is a sincere blog, a sarcastic one to rile people up, or if this guy borders on fanaticism.

I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that this 'President' is actually not one at all. Nearly every post has been discussing private sessions & matters publicly on a blog. It doesn't matter if names have been changed or locations have been kept silent...the Church Leadership would not condone such actions. Plus, look at the arrogance in them. "As a man well versed in science and the workings of the Lord I welcomed him into my office for such a discussion." & “Jesus suffered the little children to come unto him, but he did not sign the copies of the old testament that they would have been carrying around with them.”
He’s comparing himself to pour Savior?! The Stake Presidents, Bishops, and members I know are much more humble than that.

Invictus Pilgrim said...

Um ... I hope you won't take offense, President, but the anonymous comments to this post are better than the actual post. :)

Stake Pres. said...
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Sunshine said...

Let 'em have it with both barrels, Paternoster! There's about as much room for evolutionism in this church as there is for liberals.

And by the way, when ya gonna skewer them? They should have been first on your list, along with anti-american anti-gunners. They're usually the same people anyway.

R. Nephi Samuelson said...

Another insightful post President. Sadly, this very situation has become more and more common in our Ward and Stake. Several young men and women in our Ward have openly challenged sacred teachings in their combined activities which are held in our Ward on Tuesday nights. The spiritual message given at one particular opening exercise discussed following the prophet in times of wickedness. The example of Noah was cited as one who listened to the Lord and followed His commands despite the world which mocked and ridiculed him for preparing the ark, one hundred years before the global flood took place.

The spirit of contention and the adversary arose when one of the young men present stated that there was no such thing as a global flood, as the historical, anthropological, or geological evidence clearly shows that such an event never occurred, ending by stating, “Do you honestly think that 1.7 million animal species could fit inside a 400 foot long boat?” Needless to say we were shocked by such a display, but our dear Bishop turned and gently reproved the young man by stating that according to the teachings of the scriptures and the prophets, including Joseph Smith, that the global flood did indeed occur and as a sign of such an event, we have the rainbow to remind us of the covenant made between the Lord and Noah following the global flood, much like the manner the Lord uses covenants with us today through baptism and the holy temple endowment. The young man seemed frustrated by the Bishop’s reply, but in his silence it was evident that the power of testimony had bourn witness to him that the flood did indeed take place as confirmed through modern revelation and our humble bishop’s testimony.

We must cling to the teachings of the prophets and scriptures and not be tossed to and fro by the winds of strange doctrines and the teachings of men. Science has its place in the world, but only if such learning comports and conforms to the revealed word of our Heavenly Father. Such has been clearly taught in the sacred words of the Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 9:29 29 “But to be learned is good if they hearken unto the counsels of God.”

The Church is true my beloved Brothers and Sisters! I know this through intimate means, too sacred to share here.

-R. Nephi Samuelson

Bennion said...
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