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ENGAGING GOSPEL DOCTRINE (EPISODE 177)
LESSON 04
“The Things Which I Saw While I Was Carried Away in the Spirit”
God is not American. This may seem obvious when stated so bluntly, but
unfortunately this exact idea is too often presupposed.
Hook
Manual Goal To help class members understand Nephi’s vision of the future
and how the warnings and promises in it apply to us today.
EGD Goal
To prepare class members to “challenge and be challenged by” some difficult
chapters, and to model a healthy approach to these scriptures that appreciates
the good while rejecting the harmful.
I. Sunday School
a. Framing (easy traps/assumptions to fall into on this one. This is going to be a
lesson that is more challenging to import directly into Sunday School, similar to
the sacrifice of Isaac one, but these are issues that we desperately need to bring
up)
b. Two Minute Take Home
i. A tale of two churches
ii. On the removal of stumbling blocks
c. Scripture commentary
d. Lesson: (uplifting stuff first)
i. Stumbling blocks and hardened hearts (and their opposites) Humility. Be
open to being wrong. Apologize. Forgive. Change. (share idea of “ritual
redo”).
ii. Plan of Salvation and Plan of Damnation
iii. Church of God and Church of the Devil (14:14)
e. Challenge the scriptures
i. Portrayals of the Lamanites
ii. Portrayal of Columbus (the “God supports colonialism” line) Whose side
is God on? (those being unjustly oppressed, sure)
iii. Portrayal of the “Great and Abominable Church”
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f. Reading in Full
II. Scripture Study
a. Authorship of Revelation (only book in the New Testament we can tell was a
native Aramaic speaker, does say he is John, strongest evidence against apostolic
authorship is Revelation 21:14, “14And the wall of the city has twelve
foundations, and on them are the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the
Lamb.”, so not even that strong. Probably not John the disciple, but could be).
b. Did Jesus establish a Church?
c. The nature of Early Christianity (Eusebius vs. Bauer)
d. Vaticinium ex Eventu
III. Study Notes
a. Does God command or condone genocide? (this is both theologically abhorrent
and precisely the kind of thing humans are prone to believe, that God supports
their greed)
b. What was the Great Apostasy?
c. Dispensationalism down the Rabbit Hole
i. Literal truth (even then, there is so much good in the “dark ages” and
inspiration and revelation
d. Lamanites and Native American DNA
e. Corruption of the truth (how Christians, Muslims, Mormons all accuse the other
groups of changing their texts so they don’t prove the later groups legitimate)
f. The nature of scripture (how much human, how much God)
https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/things-which-my-father-saw/4-lehis-dream-and-nephis-visionapocalyptic-literature
https://journals.lib.byu.edu/spc/index.php/JBMRS/article/view/19837
Stephen Robinson’s article on the G&A C
http://rationalfaiths.com/why-columbus-may-not-be-who-mormons-want-him-to-be/
Standing Apart:
Standing Apart Review: http://mi.byu.edu/book-notes-standing-apart-apostasy/
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Lds.org essay about DNA https://www.lds.org/topics/book-of-mormon-and-dnastudies?lang=eng
Get a write up on the changes to the Introduction
http://www.deseretnews.com/article/695226008/Debate-renewed-with-change-in-Bookof-Mormon-introduction.html?pg=all
Quotes about the dark ages not being so dark
Eric Dursteller on this
"The Evolution of Mormon Views on the Middle Ages and the Renaissance"
https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/l-aldin-porter_heeded/
http://real-leaders.com/desmond-tutu-god-is-not-a-christian-nor-a-jew-muslim-hindu/
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