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I'm always grateful when others have the courage to stand up for gospel values in spite of how unpopular they are and will become. I also find great encouragement in remembering that this is part of the plan. God knew these days would come. I am also glad know the church is lead by men who are prophets, seers and revelators guided by God and who likewise know this is a step toward what will ulitimately be the triump of good over evil.
I recently was reminded of God`s foreknowledge of these days in a big way. Below are some highlights from a speech given by Elder Neal A. Maxwell at a BYU devotional in October 1978. That was 36 years ago. Long before same sex marriage was on anybody's radar, long before the internet had any impact on daily life and long before anybody could conceive of pornography becoming so widespread and socially acceptable. Religious freedom was something western nations took pride in upholding, religious ministers held the respect of their communities, and public displays of religious devotion were common, acceptable, even expected. Yet in that climate, Elder Maxwell knew something very different was coming...
We are far past the subtle stages of all of these things he warned us about. Elder Maxwell very accurately described our day. I encourage everybody to take in the full speech. I can't seem to find a video of the whole thing online, but you can listen to the MP3 or read the text.
The Book of Mormon warns us of the great and abominable church. Elder Bruce R. McConkie said:
The titles church of the devil and great and abominable church are used to identify all … organizations of whatever name or nature—whether political, philosophical, educational, economic, social, fraternal, civic, or religious—which are designed to take men on a course that leads away from God and his laws and thus from salvation in the kingdom of God - Mormon Doctrine, 2nd ed. , 137–38In other words, the secular church spoken of by Elder Maxwell is a part of the the great and abominable church. The scriptures promise us that in time the great and abominable church would bring about it's own destruction:
1 Nephi 14
3 And that great pit, which hath been digged for them by that great and abominable church, which was founded by the devil and his children, that he might lead away the souls of men down to hell—yea, that great pit which hath been digged for the destruction of men shall be filled by those who digged it, unto their utter destruction, saith the Lamb of God; not the destruction of the soul, save it be the casting of it into that hell which hath no end.4 For behold, this is according to the captivity of the devil, and also according to the justice of God, upon all those who will work wickedness and abomination before him.1 Nephi 22
13 And the blood of that great and abominable church, which is the whore of all the earth, shall turn upon their own heads; for they shall war among themselves, and the sword of their own hands shall fall upon their own heads, and they shall be drunken with their own blood.
In the meantime, we have good leadership in place in the church and it would be wise to follow their counsel. In a month we will be blessed with the chance to attend General Conference, and when we sustain the Prophet, let do more than just raise our hand when asked. Let`s show in word and deed what church we really belong to.