Sharing my thoughts after reading our assignment each week in Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families.
“Begin by reading Matthew 3; Mark 1; and Luke 3. As you pray for the Holy Ghost to help you understand these chapters, He will give you insights that are especially for you. Record these impressions, and make plans to act on them.” [Header, Lesson for Jan 28-Feb 03, 2019, “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord”.]
Journaling my impressions:
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I was impressed by the number of JST (Joseph Smith Translation) changes in Matthew 3 and was struck by why the medieval translators would have altered these sections in particular. I was also impressed, not so much by the fact that the evil spirits obeyed Christ, knowing full well who He is, but rather I was impressed more by the fact that the Jews, as keepers of the Priesthood of God, apparently had lost all ability to exercise with authority the Priesthood of God, and here specifically, had lost all ability to exercise authority over evil spirits. In general, the leaders of the Jews (who had lost much of the ability to teach with power or to act with power and authority of God) were threatened by the doings and doctrines of Christ in a similar manner to how the leaders of Christian churches (who had lost much of the ability to teach with power or to act with power and authority of God) were threatened by the doings and doctrines of Joseph Smith. Similarly, I have known people in our day who happened to be active baptized members of the restored church of Jesus Christ who had lost much of the ability to teach with power or to act with power and authority of God and consequently were threatened by a person teaching with power and authority, so much so that some of the people I have known fight against even the idea that one might be able to achieve teaching with power and authority. (Thus ignoring latter-day counsel given here, here, and elsewhere.)
I point this out in my recorded impressions today simply to stress the corollary lesson that as many as believed in such preaching with power and authority of God, who were converted or yet-again-converted unto the Lord, never did fall away, even in our day. Hence, the weekly nature of the Sacrament. So many corollary lessons, so little time…
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