Wednesday, June 28, 2017

WEEK 37 plus Dad's updates

Mom's Commentary April 2, 

My dear son Joseph,

We haven't tried chapoti yet but we will.  I loved that you sent us the recipe.
  Are you ready to be transferred and a new companion?

Its been so exciting around here with Gonzaga going to the national championship.  Every where you look are Zag signs.  Every where you go are Zag shirts. Every body is all a buzz.  Its been great to see how this has bonded our community.  Strangers are suddenly friends.  Its been so much fun and I couldn't wait to share this with you...
Well now this all really pales to the announcement of a TEMPLE IN NAIROBI!!!!!! doesn't it. WOW

Did you get to watch any conference?  I really liked a couple of the seventys talks the best which surprised me.  Its usually one of the apostles.  I did like Elder Hollands talk best of the apostles I guess.

I hope you felt the spirit at such a great announcement. Its your scared responsibility and opportunity to find the people  in the KNM who are being prepared to receive the everlasting covenant. I'm sure heavens blessings will be pouring down exceeding abundantly.  I'm also certain that Satan is going to expend extra efforts to frustrate your work.  April's Ensign has an article "The War Goes On" all about Satan.  It was a good wake up call for me.  It talks about his Strategies, Lies and deceptions, Contentions, Discouragements.  He is so clever.  It made me want to take a good look into my life and try to recognize where he is using my weaknesses to creep into my life.  It has made me want to be stronger and say, "Get thee Hence Satan."

"Satan trembles when he sees the weakest saint upon his knees"  William Cowper

Work hard and make Satan tremble so bad he'll think he's having a seizure.

Love you exceeding abundantly,

Joseph:I haven't been able to watch any of conference yet but we of course heard very soon after the announcement about the temple.
I cant wait to watch conference, I want to Hear President Monson say the words.

well we are out of time i will try to send more tomorrow (we are helping to download conference, maybe i can actually watch some of it)

"It has made me want to be stronger and say, 'Get thee Hence Satan.'" -I personally preferred the "Mr. Devil, Shut up"

Dad's updates:
Pre-mortality Joseph
President Brigham Young thus observed concerning Joseph Smith: “It was decreed in the counsels of eternity, long before the foundations of the earth were laid, that he, Joseph Smith, should be the man, in the last dispensation of this world, to bring forth the word of God to the people, and receive the fulness of the keys and power of the Priesthood of the Son of God. The Lord had his eye upon him, and upon his father, and upon his father’s father, and upon their progenitors clear back to Abraham, and from Abraham[back] to the flood [or Noah], from the flood [Noah, back] to Enoch, and from Enoch [back] to Adam. He has watched thatfamily and that blood as it has circulated from its fountain to the birth of that man. He was foreordained in eternity to preside over this last dispensation” (in Discourses of Brigham Young, sel. John A. Widtsoe, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1954, p. 108; emphasis added).
President John Taylor said: “Joseph Smith in the first place [in the pre-exsistance] was set apart by the Almighty according to the counsels of the gods in the eternal worlds, to introduce the principles of life. … God selected him for that purpose, and he fulfilled his mission and lived honorably and died honorably. I know of what I speak for I was very well acquainted with him and was with him a great deal during his life, and was with him when he died. The principles which he had, placed him in communication with the Lord, and … with the ancient apostles and prophets; such men, for instance, as AbrahamIsaacJacobNoahAdamSeth,Enoch, and Jesus and the Father, and the apostles that lived on this continent as well as those who lived on the Asiatic continent. He seemed to be as familiar with these people as we are with one another. Why? Because he had to introduce a dispensation which was called the dispensation of the fullness of times, and it was known as such by the ancient servants of God” (in Journal of Discourses, 21:94; emphasis added).
While “the Gods” foreordained Joseph to his work in the pre-exsistance they had also foreordained many others to hold keys of the work in their assigned dispensations. Never where all the keys upon the earth at the same time (with the possible exception of the time that Christ Himself walked upon the earth in mortality). As well as the above named heavenly visitors we should note that list is only a partial list - remember, that John the Baptist came; peter, James and John came; Moroni and many others too came. Each bestowing the keys they held or doctrines that they knew, under the direction of Christ, upon Joseph.
Joseph then became the first man to hold all the necessary keys at one time. Each prophet since that time has held the keys as given to them by Joseph and passed down to our prophet today. Each of these latter-day prophets operates in the “dispensation of the fullness of time” under the direction of Joseph. Each of them then bears testimony (testament) of Josephs divine calling and work.
There is another sense in which Joseph Smith was known to the ancients: he was schooled and tutored by them during his own mortal ministry. Save Jesus Christ only, the world has never known a more competent scriptural authority than Joseph Smith. It is one thing to read a book of scripture and quite another to be personally instructed by its authors. Who among the world’s scholars and religious leaders can lay claim to having stood face to face with Adam, Enoch, Noah, Moses, Elijah, John the Baptist, Peter, James, and John? Who can speak with authority about life in ancient America because of lessons learned from Nephi, Mormon, Moroni, and no doubt other ancient American Hebrews? Many of Joseph’s heavenly visitors laid their hands on his head and conferred their priesthood keys and authorities. (Elder Robert L. Millet).
The mortal work of Joseph
The mortal Joseph Smith knew the scriptures, he knew their precepts and he knew the authors, the prophets, and he knew the central character—the Lord Jesus Christ. He was prepared by them all for his work.
D&C 135:3 …In the short space of twenty years, he has brought forth the Book of Mormon, which he translated by the gift and power of God, and has been the means of publishing it on two continents; has sent the fulness of the everlasting gospel, which it contained, to the four quarters of the earth; has brought forth the revelations and commandments which compose this book of Doctrine and Covenants, and many other wise documents and instructions for the benefit of the children of men; gathered many thousands of the Latter-day Saints, founded a great city, and left a fame and name that cannot be slain. He lived great, and he died great in the eyes of God and his people; and like most of the Lord’s anointed in ancient times, has sealed his mission and his works with his own blood; and so has his brother Hyrum. In life they were not divided, and in death they were not separated!
Maybe not fully explained in this verse is that we have more scripture from Joseph then we have from any other writer of scripture. We have more priesthood authority from Joseph then ever held by man prior to him. His dispensation has lasted longer then most (except the ancients who lived hundreds of years themselves - like Adam and perhaps Noah) and Joseph’s dispensation will last until Christ comes again. Even the dispensation that began when Christ Himself started the Church during His mortal life ended in apostasy. To think that nothing can stop Joseph’s work is a testament to his work. BUT it is also a testimony of the very nature of our Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ who can plan for our human failures, our use of agency and our rebellion AND STILL have the gospel prepare the way for the glorious 2nd coming and make our redemption possible.
Joseph clarified gospel truths better then anyone. There have been prophets throughout history that knew gospels doctrines but called the same doctrine by varying names. Joseph standardized much of the terminology. It leaves us with a much easier time distinguishing what scripture means and what time frame a scripture refers to.
When Christ was killed He left behind the apostolic priesthood. He also went to the ‘New World’ and organized the same thing. Over time apostasy drove the true doctrines, church and the government of Christ into the “wilderness” (Rev. 12:6) or in other words sent it right back to heaven - the world rejected it. By 100 a.d. the old world is in apostasy and by 400 a.d. the new world is too. For hundreds of years the world remained in apostasy. For more them 50 generations truth was lost from the earth. For more them 50 generations there where no authorized priesthood holders. Then in 1820 the first vision occurs. Slowly the vapors of darkness begin to be penetrated. Light comes to the world. Then in 1830 the Church is organized with priesthood power. Joseph pealed back the vapors. The rest of the story you know and now teach.
Joseph’s life was full of accomplishments. There are probably many more then those we have listed before us here.