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  1. #1

    Default Come Follow Me

    I don't know if there's any interest in this, but of all the changes President Nelson has made, I like the Come Follow Me family study the most. We do it in the morning before the kids leave for seminary, which is not easy. I rolled my eyes at it, but I'm married to the queen of Obedienceville so I didn't have a choice. It really changed our family, and we argue less and enjoy each other more. Non-believers can argue that it's just being together as a family for a time, and maybe it is, but I like the result regardless of the cause. Anyway, this is a place to post your thoughts.

    Yesterday was a rough day in our family, but there's no sympathy in Obedienceville, so we read right before bed. What is usually 15 minutes turned into 25, and we went from sad and grumpy to happy and content as my daughter shared some interesting tidbits from her BYU BOM class, and we discussed the futility of trying to prove the BOM true. To me, the power of the Book of Mormon is not in it's words, but the way I'm different if I regularly read it. I almost never read it regularly anymore, so last night served as a refreshing reminder.

    I don't mean this to be a testimony thread. Personally, I'm interested in anything interesting that you may want to share. Funk, you're even invited to poke the bear if you feel so inclined.

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    i too, am a fan of come follow me. but my kids still struggle to give a rat's ass about any of it. oh well, we'll keep plugging along.
    I'm like LeBron James.
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    Senior Member Katy Lied's Avatar
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    Kids in my primary class use it and like it. I can always tell who is home schooled and/or has faithful parents: they have the lesson aced. But it is always fun to give them an extra doctrinal point, or extra application to life.

    Last month we taught the last lesson in Revelation rather than the Christmas lesson, and I learned quite a bit myself. Do you think that Revelations is why Nathaniel Hawthorne gave Hester Prynne a scarlet A, rather than a red, or maroon, or burgundy A?
    Last edited by Katy Lied; 01-02-2020 at 09:41 AM.

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    UofU/BYU mixed marriage Scott R Nelson's Avatar
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    Well, I have NOT enjoyed using Come Follow Me to teach five and six year olds. We nearly always had to use other resources, like old primary manuals, to find stories appropriate for the kids. Oh well, somebody else's problem now, since I got a new calling last week.

    I guess we'll have to be more active about studying the adult version of it at home now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Lied View Post
    Kids in my primary class use it and like it. I can always tell who is home schooled and/or has faithful parents: they have the lesson aced. But it is always fun to give them an extra doctrinal point, or extra application to life.

    Last month we taught the last lesson in Revelation rather than the Christmas lesson, and I learned quite a bit myself. Do you think that Revelations is why Nathaniel Hawthorne gave Hester Prynne a scarlet A, rather than a red, or maroon, or burgundy A?
    I’d have to ask Mr. Hawthorne directly, but I assumed it was a reference to the verses in Isaiah regarding sins being as scarlet.
    τὸν ἥλιον ἀνατέλλοντα πλείονες ἢ δυόμενον προσκυνοῦσιν

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    Adventurer Walter Sobchak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cowboy View Post
    I'm married to the queen of Obedienceville so I didn't have a choice.
    Same. We were already doing some half-hearted scripture study at home... maybe 5-10 min per night 3 or 4x per week. but now I feel like we replaced 1 hour of Church with probably 2 hours of scripture study per week at home. CFM on Sunday afternoon AND required readings throughout the week in the evenings before bed each night. The NT was tolerable, but the rotation of BoM and DC is going to be dreadful. Ugh.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walter Sobchak View Post
    Same. We were already doing some half-hearted scripture study at home... maybe 5-10 min per night 3 or 4x per week. but now I feel like we replaced 1 hour of Church with probably 2 hours of scripture study per week at home. CFM on Sunday afternoon AND required readings throughout the week in the evenings before bed each night. The NT was tolerable, but the rotation of BoM and DC is going to be dreadful. Ugh.
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    My Mic Sounds Nice falafel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walter Sobchak View Post
    Same. We were already doing some half-hearted scripture study at home... maybe 5-10 min per night 3 or 4x per week. but now I feel like we replaced 1 hour of Church with probably 2 hours of scripture study per week at home. CFM on Sunday afternoon AND required readings throughout the week in the evenings before bed each night. The NT was tolerable, but the rotation of BoM and DC is going to be dreadful. Ugh.
    Same. But I will take that trade all day long.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott R Nelson View Post
    Well, I have NOT enjoyed using Come Follow Me to teach five and six year olds. We nearly always had to use other resources, like old primary manuals, to find stories appropriate for the kids. Oh well, somebody else's problem now, since I got a new calling last week.

    I guess we'll have to be more active about studying the adult version of it at home now.
    Isn't Jr Primary class time only 20 minutes?

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    UofU/BYU mixed marriage Scott R Nelson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wapiti View Post
    Isn't Jr Primary class time only 20 minutes?
    25.

    Way better than the year before when it was 55. But still, it was often difficult to teach the whole 25 minutes from what was in Come Follow Me. We didn't want to spend too much time playing games, having treats, coloring, and other stuff like that. Although sometimes we wondered if the kids ever actually learned anything at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott R Nelson View Post
    25.

    Way better than the year before when it was 55. But still, it was often difficult to teach the whole 25 minutes from what was in Come Follow Me. We didn't want to spend too much time playing games, having treats, coloring, and other stuff like that. Although sometimes we wondered if the kids ever actually learned anything at all.
    That's not a requirement of the calling.
    "I think it was King Benjamin who said 'you sorry ass shitbags who have no skills that the market values also have an obligation to have the attitude that if one day you do in fact win the PowerBall Lottery that you will then impart of your substance to those without.'"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott R Nelson View Post
    Well, I have NOT enjoyed using Come Follow Me to teach five and six year olds. We nearly always had to use other resources, like old primary manuals, to find stories appropriate for the kids. Oh well, somebody else's problem now, since I got a new calling last week.

    I guess we'll have to be more active about studying the adult version of it at home now.

    The Sunbeams don't care about the lessons, which are now about 20 minutes max because of the new 2-hour block. Thankfully most lessons come with a coloring activity that I just copy out of the book and pass out w crayons.
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    Bald not naked Pelado's Avatar
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    Personally, I've liked the new program. Neither my wife nor I are royalty in Obedienceville, so we are definitely not eclipsing the weekly hour that we're saving from the church change. When we actually do the Come Follow Me study, though, it helps me to prepare for my subsequent lesson with the youth.
    "I think it was King Benjamin who said 'you sorry ass shitbags who have no skills that the market values also have an obligation to have the attitude that if one day you do in fact win the PowerBall Lottery that you will then impart of your substance to those without.'"
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    Senior Member Katy Lied's Avatar
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    Yesterday I brought a sheet of copper, a set of letter stamps, a stamp block, and a stamping hammer, and all the kids were able to stamp out a few letters and create "The Book of Mormon" on the copper plate. Then we got the copper wet, and dirty, and bent and could still read the text.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Lied View Post
    Yesterday I brought a sheet of copper, a set of letter stamps, a stamp block, and a stamping hammer, and all the kids were able to stamp out a few letters and create "The Book of Mormon" on the copper plate. Then we got the copper wet, and dirty, and bent and could still read the text.
    That is what is known as 'the extra mile.'
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    Semper infra dignitatem PaloAltoCougar's Avatar
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    Jana Riess' column about this year's curriculum (characterized here as a "dumpster fire") has a certain appeal to me, including its several references to a variety of commentaries that are far more stimulating than the current manual. The fact that the printed manual includes the embarrassing and firmly disclaimed statement that dark skin color was a curse from God for unrighteousness isn't the only reason one can do better looking elsewhere. For example, the various takes I've read about the Laban saga make that otherwise horrific story somewhat more interesting, and easier to accept than the simple conclusion that Nephi was simply doing God's bidding throughout.

    But I wanted to mention one rather sophomoric question I ponderized (Thanks, Devin!) last week. Why did Laman and Lemuel stay with the family? They have a lot of contempt for their parents and little brother. They're adult males, presumably with the right to do whatever they want. They have access to considerable wealth (or did, before Nephi squandered it with Laban). So why didn't they simply say, "Mom, Dad, we love you but we're really not interested in giving up the good life here in J'Town. Bon Voyage!" Seriously, is there a reason they stayed with the family? BTW, I think the question is interesting whether one believes in the historicity of the BoM or not, so I'm not interested in answers that hinge on that element.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Jana Riess' column about this year's curriculum (characterized here as a "dumpster fire") has a certain appeal to me, including its several references to a variety of commentaries that are far more stimulating than the current manual. The fact that the printed manual includes the embarrassing and firmly disclaimed statement that dark skin color was a curse from God for unrighteousness isn't the only reason one can do better looking elsewhere. For example, the various takes I've read about the Laban saga make that otherwise horrific story somewhat more interesting, and easier to accept than the simple conclusion that Nephi was simply doing God's bidding throughout.

    But I wanted to mention one rather sophomoric question I ponderized (Thanks, Devin!) last week. Why did Laman and Lemuel stay with the family? They have a lot of contempt for their parents and little brother. They're adult males, presumably with the right to do whatever they want. They have access to considerable wealth (or did, before Nephi squandered it with Laban). So why didn't they simply say, "Mom, Dad, we love you but we're really not interested in giving up the good life here in J'Town. Bon Voyage!" Seriously, is there a reason they stayed with the family? BTW, I think the question is interesting whether one believes in the historicity of the BoM or not, so I'm not interested in answers that hinge on that element.
    Inner-conflict. Leaving a family, community, church etc. even one that is genuinely abusive and harmful is itself a traumatic and difficult experience. Additionally, leaving the family would have meant abandoning a major source of resentment and an excuse to be self-destructive failures. By staying, they avoided potentially becoming more responsible and could hold on to their victim mentalities.

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    Adventurer Walter Sobchak's Avatar
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    I despise the story of Laban. Always have. I was essentially kicked out of my freshman year first semester religion class at BYU because I disagreed with the teacher that the story of Laban is inspired.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Jana Riess' column about this year's curriculum (characterized here as a "dumpster fire") has a certain appeal to me, including its several references to a variety of commentaries that are far more stimulating than the current manual. The fact that the printed manual includes the embarrassing and firmly disclaimed statement that dark skin color was a curse from God for unrighteousness isn't the only reason one can do better looking elsewhere. For example, the various takes I've read about the Laban saga make that otherwise horrific story somewhat more interesting, and easier to accept than the simple conclusion that Nephi was simply doing God's bidding throughout.

    But I wanted to mention one rather sophomoric question I ponderized (Thanks, Devin!) last week. Why did Laman and Lemuel stay with the family? They have a lot of contempt for their parents and little brother. They're adult males, presumably with the right to do whatever they want. They have access to considerable wealth (or did, before Nephi squandered it with Laban). So why didn't they simply say, "Mom, Dad, we love you but we're really not interested in giving up the good life here in J'Town. Bon Voyage!" Seriously, is there a reason they stayed with the family? BTW, I think the question is interesting whether one believes in the historicity of the BoM or not, so I'm not interested in answers that hinge on that element.
    Thank you, good resources.

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    Every story needs an antagonist.
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    Corporate lackey for Jesus Jeff Lebowski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Jana Riess' column about this year's curriculum (characterized here as a "dumpster fire") has a certain appeal to me, including its several references to a variety of commentaries that are far more stimulating than the current manual. The fact that the printed manual includes the embarrassing and firmly disclaimed statement that dark skin color was a curse from God for unrighteousness isn't the only reason one can do better looking elsewhere. For example, the various takes I've read about the Laban saga make that otherwise horrific story somewhat more interesting, and easier to accept than the simple conclusion that Nephi was simply doing God's bidding throughout.

    But I wanted to mention one rather sophomoric question I ponderized (Thanks, Devin!) last week. Why did Laman and Lemuel stay with the family? They have a lot of contempt for their parents and little brother. They're adult males, presumably with the right to do whatever they want. They have access to considerable wealth (or did, before Nephi squandered it with Laban). So why didn't they simply say, "Mom, Dad, we love you but we're really not interested in giving up the good life here in J'Town. Bon Voyage!" Seriously, is there a reason they stayed with the family? BTW, I think the question is interesting whether one believes in the historicity of the BoM or not, so I'm not interested in answers that hinge on that element.
    Yes, some excellent resources in that article. I second her recommendations.

    Jana Riess is very sharp - but my gripe with her is that she is too frequently on the bombastic/hyperbolic side. Did she really need to characterize the curriculum as a "dumpster fire"? Seems like her schtick is creating LDS clickbait.
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    вот так штука CardiacCoug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walter Sobchak View Post
    I despise the story of Laban. Always have. I was essentially kicked out of my freshman year first semester religion class at BYU because I disagreed with the teacher that the story of Laban is inspired.
    I found the story of Laban highly inspirational in 7th grade when I decided to try to beat the crap out of another kid at school.

    Sometimes God wants us to be violent!! It’s right there in the scriptures!

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    Bald not naked Pelado's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CardiacCoug View Post
    I found the story of Laban highly inspirational in 7th grade when I decided to try to beat the crap out of another kid at school.

    Sometimes God wants us to be violent!! It’s right there in the scriptures!
    Principal: Why did you hurt him?

    Young CC: The Spirit constrained me to kick his ass. If he'd had a sword on him, he'd be headless now.
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  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Jana Riess' column about this year's curriculum (characterized here as a "dumpster fire") has a certain appeal to me, including its several references to a variety of commentaries that are far more stimulating than the current manual. The fact that the printed manual includes the embarrassing and firmly disclaimed statement that dark skin color was a curse from God for unrighteousness isn't the only reason one can do better looking elsewhere. For example, the various takes I've read about the Laban saga make that otherwise horrific story somewhat more interesting, and easier to accept than the simple conclusion that Nephi was simply doing God's bidding throughout.

    But I wanted to mention one rather sophomoric question I ponderized (Thanks, Devin!) last week. Why did Laman and Lemuel stay with the family? They have a lot of contempt for their parents and little brother. They're adult males, presumably with the right to do whatever they want. They have access to considerable wealth (or did, before Nephi squandered it with Laban). So why didn't they simply say, "Mom, Dad, we love you but we're really not interested in giving up the good life here in J'Town. Bon Voyage!" Seriously, is there a reason they stayed with the family? BTW, I think the question is interesting whether one believes in the historicity of the BoM or not, so I'm not interested in answers that hinge on that element.
    I looked at the PFS article that Riess links to. Stack says that the racist statements are in the Come Follow Me Sunday School manual, but she's wrong. They're only in the family study guide.

    But more importantly, I don't get what all the hubub is about. I don't know if Riess did this intentionally, but she is wrong about what the (print) manual says. She claims:

    In the Mormon world, the last two weeks have witnessed vigorous condemnations of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ “Come Follow Me” curriculum for 2020, specifically the printed version’s inclusion of racist ideology that describes dark skin as a “curse” from God for unrighteousness.
    The bolded line from PAC's post says the same thing. However, this is what was in the manual:

    “The dark skin was placed upon the Lamanites so that they could be distinguished from the Nephites and to keep the two peoples from mixing [see 2 Nephi 5:21-23; Alma 3:6-10]. The dark skin was the sign of the curse. The curse was the withdrawal of the Spirit of the Lord [see 2 Nephi 5:20]. ... Dark skin ... is no longer to be considered a sign of the curse” (Joseph Fielding Smith, “Answers to Gospel Questions,” comp. Joseph Fielding Smith Jr. [1960], 3:122-23).
    What am I missing? The statement is very clear that dark skin is not the curse.

    Also, I want to note that I taught Gospel Doctrine for a couple of years, ending about four years ago, and have from CFM for a few years. I worked hard on my GD lessons, and sometimes sought supplemental materials, but the old GD curriculum was more difficult to teach from than the CFM curriculum, by far. I've really enjoyed CFM.
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    Semper infra dignitatem PaloAltoCougar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Student View Post
    I looked at the PFS article that Riess links to. Stack says that the racist statements are in the Come Follow Me Sunday School manual, but she's wrong. They're only in the family study guide.

    But more importantly, I don't get what all the hubub is about. I don't know if Riess did this intentionally, but she is wrong about what the (print) manual says. She claims:

    ...

    The bolded line from PAC's post says the same thing. However, this is what was in the manual:

    ...

    What am I missing? The statement is very clear that dark skin is not the curse.

    Also, I want to note that I taught Gospel Doctrine for a couple of years, ending about four years ago, and have from CFM for a few years. I worked hard on my GD lessons, and sometimes sought supplemental materials, but the old GD curriculum was more difficult to teach from than the CFM curriculum, by far. I've really enjoyed CFM.
    I don't want to get too deep in the weeds on the curse issue, as my primary point is that there are several interesting commentaries out there that make CFM study more interesting, at least for us. I agree with JL that Riess at times resorts unnecessarily to a sensational headline approach, but much of the substance she provides is interesting and helpful.

    Whether dark skin was the curse, or was merely the sign of the curse, seems like a distinction without a difference, which I suspect is why the Church dropped the JFS quote in the latest online version of CFM.

    For the hardy few who may have stuck around, for ease of reference here is the original printed version:
    2 NEPHI 5:20–21 What is the “curse” that came upon the Lamanites? “The dark skin was placed upon the Lamanites so that they could be distinguished from the Nephites and to keep the two peoples from mixing [see 2 Nephi 5:21–23; Alma 3:6–10]. The dark skin was the sign of the curse. The curse was the withdrawal of the Spirit of the Lord [see 2 Nephi 5:20].... Dark skin ... is no longer to be considered a sign of the curse” ( Joseph Fielding Smith, Answers to Gospel Questions, comp. Joseph Fielding Smith Jr. [1960], 3:122–23).
    That section has now been eliminated in its entirety, having been replaced with the following:
    2 Nephi 5:20–21
    What was the curse that came upon the Lamanites?

    In Nephi’s day the curse of the Lamanites was that they were “cut off from [the Lord’s] presence … because of their iniquity” (2 Nephi 5:20–21). This meant the Spirit of the Lord was withdrawn from their lives. When Lamanites later embraced the gospel of Jesus Christ, “the curse of God did no more follow them” (Alma 23:18).

    The Book of Mormon also states that a mark of dark skin came upon the Lamanites after the Nephites separated from them. The nature and appearance of this mark are not fully understood. The mark initially distinguished the Lamanites from the Nephites. Later, as both the Nephites and Lamanites each went through periods of wickedness and righteousness, the mark became irrelevant as an indicator of the Lamanites’ standing before God.
    Prophets affirm in our day that dark skin is not a sign of divine disfavor or cursing. The Church embraces Nephi’s teaching that the Lord “denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female” (2 Nephi 26:33). President Russell M. Nelson declared: “The Lord has stressed His essential doctrine of equal opportunity for His children. … Differences in culture, language, gender, race, and nationality fade into insignificance as the faithful enter the covenant path and come unto our beloved Redeemer” (“President Nelson Remarks at Worldwide Priesthood Celebration” [June 1, 2018], newsroom.ChurchofJesusChrist.org).

    See also “Till We All Come in the Unity of the Faith” (video, ChurchofJesusChrist.org).

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    I love the abbreviation of GD for gospel doctrine. When I see it, I hear it in the voice of the old crusty sergeant major from We Were Soldiers, but "gospel doctrine" is not what he's saying.

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    Semper infra dignitatem PaloAltoCougar's Avatar
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    With everyone being shut in, and with no SS class (I miss Sister Himmler already) to unload one’s spiritual and intellectual burdens, I hope people will share any insights they’ve gleaned from the week’s reading. The missus and I covered the past two weeks today, covering the Book of Jacob (seven chapters). I’m interested in any insights (inspiring, troubling, amusing, whatever) others experience if they’re doing this at home. Among the thoughts we discussed (with help from The Book of Mormon for the Least of These) this morning:

    Jacob 1:5-6. Given the current crisis, the opener “For because of faith and great anxiety, it truly had been made manifest unto us…” had particular resonance. We think of faith eliminating anxiety, but sometimes they go together, with anxiety driving us toward greater faith, or away from it, depending on how we choose to react,

    Jacob 1:15-16. Here Jacob rips on two things: materialistic greed and the abuse of women, which apparently go together. It seems plural wives and concubines are a form of sinful accumulation, just like that of riches.

    Jacob 2:20 Pride hurts those around us; it is not a victimless crime.

    It’s interesting that the headnote to Chapter 2 (presumably crafted by BRM) and the Come Follow Me manual say Jacob condemned only “the unauthorized” practice of polygamy, but I have a hard time finding the “unauthorized” qualifier. Verse 30 may provide some support for that, but one would think such an important qualifier would be made clearer. Personally, I think Jacob had it right to begin with.

    The last few verses of Jacob 2 are interesting when one imagines them being spoken from the pulpit of General Conference which, in a sense, they may have been. Jacob apologizes to the women because he’s about to rip into the menfolk and he’s sorry the ladies have to hear it. Buy why didn’t he save his condemnation for Priesthood Meeting and rebuke the guys out of earshot of the ladies? Probably because he wanted the women to know he was looking out for them and he wanted to make clear that harming women wasn’t going to be swept under the rug, as men throughout history are wont to do, being protective of fellow bros. The whole passage is noticeably feminist.

    Jacob 3:8-10 The whole whiteness/filthiness discussion is pretty disturbing. Skin color shouldn’t enter into the discussion at all, and, honestly I think this is an example of a prophet screwing up (it happens).

    The vineyard allegory has been discussed so much elsewhere I won’t mention it here.

    Final comment, I always like Sherem’s entrance (Jacob 7:6) when he approaches and says “Brother Jacob…”. One pictures a toothy grin accompanies by a flying elbow handshake, all intended to convey warmth but suggesting one is about to get pitched for the latest in essential oils.

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    We've got multiple small people as well as teenagers, so Jacob 5 was kind of a puzzler to figure out how to discuss. Can't really break it into pieces either, or else you lose focus. Eventually, I grabbed some PVC pipe and connectors in the garage, and formed a Tree. The connectors made it easy to pull "wild fruit branches" off the tree, and hand them to the kids so they were interactive with the lesson. At the appropriate times, they could "gather" their branches back to the tame tree. We read most (not all, since there are some verses that are a little too repetitive) of the verses, and pointed out how when something is important, the scriptures repeat it. The "It grieveth me that I should lose this tree" I think drove home the love of the Lord for each of them.

    Anyway, they paid attention. I call that a victory.

  29. #29
    it's all a blur mtnbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LVAllen View Post
    We've got multiple small people as well as teenagers, so Jacob 5 was kind of a puzzler to figure out how to discuss. Can't really break it into pieces either, or else you lose focus. Eventually, I grabbed some PVC pipe and connectors in the garage, and formed a Tree. The connectors made it easy to pull "wild fruit branches" off the tree, and hand them to the kids so they were interactive with the lesson. At the appropriate times, they could "gather" their branches back to the tame tree. We read most (not all, since there are some verses that are a little too repetitive) of the verses, and pointed out how when something is important, the scriptures repeat it. The "It grieveth me that I should lose this tree" I think drove home the love of the Lord for each of them.

    Anyway, they paid attention. I call that a victory.
    There is a downloadable image at the end of the Come Follow Me Sunday School lesson that goes through the various stages of grafting in and out of trees. I recently got called to teach the 12-13 year-olds in Sunday School, and was thinking of giving them each some play-doh to make a tree and graft into each other's trees.

  30. #30
    Faith crisis consultant SeattleUte's Avatar
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    What do GAs have to say about Covid-19 and society’s response? They’re always quick with manifestos about porn, but nothing about THIS? What a worthless bunch.

    Harari says that this is why religion is dying off. Nothing to say about anything relevant—about tech, the economy, the current pandemic, etc.
    When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him.

    --Jonathan Swift

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