Sunday, December 18, 2011

Church Services This Week at Sullivan Hollow Second Ward Weber Heights Stake Ogden Utah December 12-18-2011

Elders Quorum
Elder oaks conference talk - Teachings of Jesus
“When you consider all of the things the Savior has done for us, don’t you have many reasons to come back to church to worship and serve Him?”

Ask yourself how the savior is the light and life of the world.

Sunday School
We are in the sixth seal
Seal 1 - creation/fall
Seal 2 - Noah and the floor
Seal 3 - the reign of the judges/the time of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
Seal 4 - the reign of the kings/division of the land
Seal 5 - apostasy/dark ages
Seal 6 - the restoration/the last days
Seal 7 - the millennium

2 Timothy 3:1-4
1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

In a perilous situation is it smart to go without the tools we need to survive?

The book of Revelation speaks of the beast with 12 horns.  It is the twelve tribes of Israel.

When the first seal is opened a white horse comes forth.  The earth was pure at the opening of the first seal.

At the opening of the second seal the red horse comes forward.  Satan was loosed on the earth after the fall At that time of the flood the world was very violent.  The flood was to cleanse it.

The third seal brings forth a black horse.  This was famine and hunger.  During this seal the law become pressing down on the people.

The fourth seal brought forth a pale horse.  The kingdoms become divided and there is death and war.

Speaking of the war in Heaven, ““That war, so bitter, so intense, has gone on, and it has never ceased. It is the war between truth and error, between agency and compulsion, between the followers of Christ and those who have denied Him.” (President Gordon B Hinckley, in Conference Report, Oct. 1986, 55)

“The elders of Israel are now issuing the invitations to the marriage supper of the Lord; those who believe and obey the gospel thereby accept the invitation and shall sit in due course … at the marriage feast” (Elder Bruce R McConkie, Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 3 vols. [1966–73], 3:563–64).

The invitation is given to all men and accepted at baptism.

“Each day the forces of evil and the forces of good enlist new recruits. Each day we personally make many decisions showing the cause we support.” (President Ezra Taft Benson, “In His Steps,” Ensign, Sept. 1988, 2)

Sacrament Service
A couple that just returned from a mission to Nauvoo spoke to us.

One of the missionaries talked about a Jewish lady that came to visit Nauvoo.  The Jewish lady talked about how our two peoples shared some of the same persecutions.

In Jesus' day Herod built a temple for the Jews, but it was for a status symbol for Herod and not for the work of the Lord.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Church Services This Week at Sullivan Hollow Second Ward Weber Heights Stake Ogden Utah December 12-11-2011

Priesthood Opening
The Church has a mentoring program for assisting people with finding employment.  At first when I heard about this program I thought of a mentor as someone that has years and years of experience in something or a degree in something who would guide someone in doing what they do.

While being mentored by someone who does what you do or aspire to do is a good thing, I think there is another important definition that is important.

A mentor, I think, is someone that encourages us to pursue our goals and helps us find ways to accomplish them.  A mentor takes an interest in a person’s goals and helps them evaluate mold those goals.

As I have thought about mentoring I have thought about how we could be of more service to our families, extended families, home teaching families, our friends, and our neighbors by being a mentor to them.

Sometimes the encouragement is as a cheerleader and sometimes it is through researching their needs and giving them input.

Elders Quorum
Degrees of glory that we can obtain based on how we want to live our lives:
  • Celestial - Like the sun - Is hot and bright and gives light and warmth to millions of miles.
  • Terrestrial - Like the moon - Gives some light on a dark night, but has some dark spots and is cold.
  • Telestial - like the stars - one can see their light but they don't really light anything up and they give no warmth.

“In order to obtain the exaltation we must accept the gospel and all its covenants; and take upon us the obligations which the Lord has offered; and walk in the light and the understanding of the truth; and ‘live by every word that proceedeth forth from the mouth of God’” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 2:43).

Exhalation, being like god, happens not because we want God's power or comforts, but because we love like he does and are dedicated to duty as much as he is.

Moroni 7:6
 6 For behold, God hath said a man being evil cannot do that which is good; for if he offereth a gift, or prayeth unto God, except he shall do it with real intent it profiteth him nothing.

Sunday School
The book of Revelation
What does revelation mean?  Revealing something that was hidden.

It was given by revelation, so it can only be understood by revelation.

It is possible that at the time that the revelation was given to John, Peter was dead and John may be the chief apostle or president of the church.

Revelation 1:4
4 John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne;

Joseph Smith’s translation of Revelation 1:4
4 Now this is the testimony of John to the seven servants who are over the seven churches in Asia. Grace unto you, and peace from him who is, and who was, and who is to come; who hath sent forth his angel from before his throne, to testify unto those who are the seven servants over the seven churches.

These are the bishops of those units of the church.

Jesus “I am alpha and omega” is similar to saying He is or covers everything
from a to z.

Revelation 2:1-2
1 Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;
2 I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:

The seven candle sticks are the churches or containers of the light.  When he refers to candle stick he likely means the holder of the candle and not the wax and wick.

The stars are the leaders or bishops of the churches.

Are we supposed to understand the book of revelation?  Yes, that is why the lord revealed it.

Revelation 4:4
4 And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.

Doctrine and Covenants 77:5
Q. What are we to understand by the four and twenty elders, spoken of by John?
A. We are to understand that these elders whom John saw, were elders who had been faithful in the work of the ministry and were dead; who belonged to the seven churches, and were then in the paradise of God.

The elders had belonged to the seven children and had died.  Perhaps former bishops or stake presidents or elders quorum presidents.

Revelation 5:Heading
John sees the book sealed with seven seals”

These are dispensations of time - past, present, and future.

Sacrament Service
One of the women in the young women presidency that didn't speak last week
shared her scripture hero.  She chose Mary the mother of Jesus.

She talked of the strength of Mary's testimony and of her dedication to obedience.

"Everyone who has served a mission can testify of the tremendous happiness that comes of service to others.” (President Gordon B Hinckley, “I Believe”, Ensign August 1992)

Mosiah 2:17
 17 And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.
Service of your fellow beings - find scripture

The boy scout slogan is "do a good turn daily" It isn't the size of the good turn that matters.  It is the good and the daily that matters.

“Heaven knows there are so very, very, very many people in this world who need help. Oh, so very . . . many. Let's get the cankering, selfish attitude out of our lives, my brothers and sisters, and stand a little taller and reach a little higher in the service of others." (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley (1997), 597)

From the Bulletin
“lt is not enough merely to speak of Jesus Christ or proclaim that we are His disciples. It is not enough to surround ourselves with symbols of our religion. Discipleship is not a spectator sport.
...We cannot receive the blessings of the gospel merely by observing the good that others do.” President Dieter F. Uchtciorf, The Way of the Disciple, Ensign, May 2009, 76 — 77.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Church Services This Week at Sullivan Hollow Second Ward Weber Heights Stake Ogden Utah December 12-4-2011

Elders Quorum

The lesson was based on “The Privilege of Prayer” by Elder J. Devn Cornish given in the Sunday Afternoon session of the October 2011 General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Why do we have to ask for the things we need or want?  Why do we need to exercise to be healthy?  That is how life works.  God knows what we need to grow.  Thinking and praying about our needs and wants and
keeping God in it is the way we grow.

"The object of prayer is not to change the will of God, but to secure for ourselves and for others blessings that God is already willing to grant, but that are made conditional on our asking for them." (“Prayer”, Bible Dictionary)

We can't always see through foresight.  We usually have to follow God's pattern and then view the results of our obedience to how things work with hindsight.

Do not pray like you are leaving a message.  Take time to pause and listen.

Prayers are not always answered the way we want.  Sometimes we are required to go through the trial as a part of our growth process. Sometimes the things we want will get in the way of better things God
has for us.  If we pray for a certain job maybe it will keep us from pursuing a better one He has for us

Sunday School
1, 2, and 3 John
This John is the one who wrote the book of Revelation.  He is also the one called beloved.  He was also in the first presidency after Christ died (Peter, James, and John).  He is also the John that never died and is
still ministering today.  He also wrote the gospel of John.

Doctrine and Covenants 7:1-3
1 And the Lord said unto me: John, my beloved, what desirest thou? For if you shall ask what you will, it shall be granted unto you.
2 And I said unto him: Lord, give unto me power over death, that I may live and bring souls unto thee.
3 And the Lord said unto me: Verily, verily, I say unto thee, because thou desirest this thou shalt tarry until I come in my glory, and shalt prophesy before nations, kindreds, tongues and people.

Luke wrote a missionary tract.  John wrote advanced stuff to the saints.  Matthew wrote a missionary tract, but specifically to the Jews.

John did not introduce himself in his epistles.  Paul generally introduced himself.

1 John 1:6-7
6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

If we walk in ignorance after receiving the holy ghost then we are foolish and need to change our lives.  If we stumble through our lives without feeling the guidance of the Holy Ghost, then we are lying to ourselves and pretending to be right with God.

Live the gospel as conspicuously as you can. Keep the covenants your children know you have made. Give priesthood blessings. And bear your testimony!  Don’t just assume your children will somehow get the drift of your beliefs on their own. (Elder Jeffrey R Holland, A Prayer for the Children”, General Conference April 2003)

From the Bulletin
“Our personal testimony is a protective shield, and like an iron rod it is guiding us safely through darkness and confusion."
“A testimony motivates us to choose the right at all times and in ail circumstances. It motivates us to draw nearer to God, allowing Him to draw nearer to us (see James 4:8)".
“Just as the Lord knew Nephi, God knows us and loves us. This is our time; these are our days. We are where the action is. Our firm personal testimony will motivate us to change ourselves and then bless the world.” President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, The Power of a Personal Testimony, October 2006.

First Presidency Christmas Devotional
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Of Curtains, Contentment, and Christmas
"Christmas and some of the cherished traditions of the season remind us that we, like the Wise Men of old, should seek the Christ and lay before Him the most precious of gifts: a broken heart and a contrite spirit."

"We cannot offer Him the gift of perfection in all things because this is a gift beyond our capacity to give—at least for now. The Lord does not expect that we commit to move mountains. But He does require that we bring as gifts our best efforts to move ourselves, one foot in front of the other, walking in the ways He has prepared and taught."

“[The Savior’s gifts to us] may be the most one-sided gift exchange in the history of the universe.”

My thoughts:  The best gift exchange are ones that are one sided.  The gifts I enjoy most are the ones that are given me with nothing expected in return. The giving I enjoy most are given without receiving anything in

President Henry B. Eyring, The Gifts of Christmas
John 3:16-17
16 ¶For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Helaman 14:3-4
3 And behold, this will I give unto you for a sign at the time of his coming; for behold, there shall be great lights in heaven, insomuch that in the night before he cometh there shall be no darkness, insomuch that it shall appear unto man as if it was day.
4 Therefore, there shall be one day and a night and a day, as if it were one day and there were no night; and this shall be unto you for a sign; for ye shall know of the rising of the sun and also of its setting; therefore they shall know of a surety that there shall be two days and a night; nevertheless the night shall not be darkened; and it shall be the night before he is born.

President Thomas S Monson, Because He Came
"The spirit of Christmas is the spirit of love and of generosity and of goodness. It illuminates the picture window of the soul, and we look out upon the world’s busy life and become more interested in people than in things."

"...when we keep the spirit of Christmas, we keep the Spirit of Christ, for the Christmas spirit is the Christ Spirit. It will block out all the distractions around us which can diminish Christmas and swallow up its true meaning.."

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Church Services This Week at Sullivan Hollow Second Ward Weber Heights Stake Ogden Utah November 11-27-2011

Elders Quorum
Ether 4:12
12 And whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do good is of me; for good cometh of none save it be of me. I am the same that leadeth men to all good; he that will not believe my words will not believe me—that I am; and he that will not believe me will not believe the Father who sent me. For behold, I am the Father, I am the light, and the life, and the truth of the world.

The instructor gave a comparison of a fruit tree to parts of the gospel.
  • Roots/Hope - anchors us - it is critical that a tree remain anchored
  • The Condition of the Soil/Humility - much like the parable of the sower- the condition we are living.

Matthew 13:4-8
4 And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
5 Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
6 And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
7 And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
8 But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirty fold.
  • The Trunk/Knowledge - the trunk or structure of the tree
  • Growth/Faith - the growth of tree or the fact that it is growing
  • Fruit/Charity - fruit - the love of god
  • Grace - the sun, the rain, the nutrients, wind
  • Repentance - the act of the root and branches reaching for the sun or water or better soil.

Without the roots and leaves and such the tree can't take in the things it needs.  Without the nutrients and sun the roots are worthless.

Wind is like our trials.  Wind flexes the tree and stimulates growth.

God loves us unconditionally, but good things don't come without effort.  Why are there conditions on getting light when I flip a light switch?  The power must be connected
to the house.  The wiring has to be sound.  The switch has to be functional.  Even though the electricity is there and flows freely, if we are not equipped to receive it then it does not function for us.  The same is true for Grace or the Atonement.  If we have not done anything to reach out to that grace it can not operate in us.

Sunday School
Jude and the Peters
Jude is the brother of James.  Likely the brother of James that wrote the epistle of James and was the leader of the church at Jerusalem.

Jude 1:3,9
3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.

3 Nephi 11:29
 29 For verily, verily I say unto you, he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who is the father of contention, and he stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger, one with another.

Both of these scriptures are true, so we must reconcile to find the meaning and not just jump to a conclusion by looking at one alone.  Many verses in the scripture need to be reconciled together to understand the doctrine.

Verse 9 says that Michael contended without railing accusation.  It must be possible to contend without being contentious.

Peter uses Babylon as a code word for Rome.

Some dispute that Peter wrote the epistles of Peter, since the Greek is too good for a fisherman.  But prophets at times have scribes or spokes persons.  Also, prophets do grow and learn a lot beyond their profession and schooling over the course of being a prophet.  Joseph Smith knew much more about Hebrew at the end of his life than he did when he was called when he was a farmer who possessed only an elementary education.

Isaiah 8:13-15
 13 Sanctify the Lord of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.
 14 And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
 15 And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.

How is Jesus a stone of stumbling and rock of offense?  Some are offended at the standards the Savior sets and they cause them to stumble and not accept the Gospel.

We should be chaste and also not partake of drugs (alcohol, nicotine, heroine, marijuana...).  This makes a strong foundation for us and yet others stumble because of these standards saying that it restricts them from doing what they want.

1 Peter 2:19-20
 19 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.
 20 For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.

What glory is there if you get trouble because of things you did that were wrong?  We should take our lumps patiently.  If you are being good and you suffer because of it and you take it patiently then God is pleased.

1 Peter 3:14
 14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;

1 Peter 4:5-6
 5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.
 6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

2 Peter 1:3-4
 3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
 4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

2 Peter 1:5-7
 5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;
 6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;
 7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

Doctrine and Covenants 4:5-6
5 And faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye single to the glory of God, qualify him for the work.
6 Remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility, diligence.

Sacrament Service
The young women's presidency and one of the young women talked about their scripture heroes that they had talked about this last week at the night of excellence.

One spoke about what a good friend Rebeca was.

One talked of Hannah and the things that Hannah would've done differently and similarly with her sabbath in comparison to the person giving the talk.

“Christ is the Creator, the Healer. What He made, He can fix. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the gospel of repentance and forgiveness (see 2 Ne. 1:13; 2 Ne. 9:45; Jacob 3:11; Alma 26:13–14; Moro. 7:17–19).” (President Boyd K Packer, “I Will Remember Your Sins No More”, General Conference April 2006)

Alma 34:32-33
32 For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.
33 And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed.

One chose Enos and spoke on his feelings about his family and what his personal prayers were like.  His prayers were probably sincere and not rush.

Another studied Ruth an Hannah.  They talked of how Ruth and Hannah handled adversity.

“...meaningful morning prayer is an important element in the spiritual creation of each day—and precedes the temporal creation or the actual execution of the day. Just as the temporal creation was linked to and a continuation of the spiritual creation, so meaningful morning and evening prayers are linked to and are a continuation of each other.” (Elder David A Bednar, “Pray Always”, General Conference November 2006)

“Service to others deepens and sweetens this life while we are preparing to live in a better world. It is by serving that we learn to serve. When we are engaged in the service of our fellowmen, not only do our deeds assist them, but we put our own problems in a fresher perspective. When we concern ourselves more with others, there is less time to be concerned with ourselves! In the midst of the miracle of serving, there is the promise of Jesus that by losing ourselves, we find ourselves!” (President Spencer W Kimball, “President Kimball Speaks Out on Service to Others”, Ensign March 1981)

From the Bulletin
Divine guidance and inspiration are promised to those who ‘feast upon the words of Christ’ and ‘liken all scriptures’ unto themselves.” Elder Spencer J. Condie, Claim the Exceeding and Precious Promises, Ensign, Nov. 2007, pg.16.