Social Justice Study Guide for Glenn Beck

57

March 23, 2010 by Jason Brown

 

Dear Mormon Workers,

In light of Brother Beck’s most recent attacks on social justice and Reverend Jim Wallis, I thought it would be appropriate for us to compile a list of scriptures and statements by general authorities of our faith related to Social Justice. Many of us are members of the group Mormons or Equality and Social Justice (MESJ) and see an essential connection between the Gospel and social justice.

Perhaps we should use these scriptures to send an open letter to Brother Beck as he seems to be confusing social justice with totalitarian tyranny (communism and Nazism). I was also thinking it would be fun if we maybe dropped by Brother Beck’s home during Family Home Evening and brought him a copy of Approaching Zion by Hugh Nibley, which he obviously has not read; a book that expounds the radical social justice message of the Gospel.

I’ll start us off:

Doctrine & Covenants 78:6 “For if ye are not equal in earthly things ye cannot be equal in obtaining heavenly things.”

Moses 7:18 “And the Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them.”

Please leave your quotes and scriptures in the comments section.

Advertisements

57 thoughts on “Social Justice Study Guide for Glenn Beck

  1. Bart says:

    Justice is defined as the quality of being just or fair, a judgement involved in the determination of rights and the assignment of rewards or punishments.

    Economic Justice is defined as a fair balance between input and output, and can be extended to allow a person to choose their career path, as well as persons or businesses to enter into business deals, exchange goods and services. …

    Social Justice is defined as justice applied on a social scale. Most often I’ve seen the concept of a ‘living wage’ associated with Social Justice programs, and it shows up as a minimum wage here in the United States. It also promotes as much equality between races, genders, and other sub-cultures as possible.

    On the surface, I see nothing wrong with either of these ideals. In fact, they are pretty close to what I believe is right.

    When Economic Justice is used as the argument supporting ideas that families should not be able to inherit wealth and that each generation should work for their own support and give the wealth on their death to the state to be seems to be highway robbery on a grand scale.

    When Social Justice is used to provide for someone who has repeatedly made poor choices (pick any one of millions of abuses of the welfare system around the world) and made no effort to learn from their mistakes, and would rather sit and be provided for without any effort to improve their life, then I have a huge problem with it and will fight against it because it takes a good idea too far, and allows people to be protected from the consequences of their decisions which inhibits learning.

    Social and economic justice without personal responsibility and accountability is absolutely wrong and should be opposed.

    • Brooks W. Wilson says:

      A fair analysis up until paragraph 6. At that point your previous pseudo intellectual observations are laid bare. Paragraph 6 is your defining caveat emptor. The problem with your outlet is the question of who decides who is qualified and who isn’t? You?

      This is what Brigham Young says regarding your escape clause:

      The following quotation from page 219 of Teachings of Presidents of the Church – Brigham Young expresses my sentiment:

      “Suppose that in this community there are ten beggars who beg from door to door for something to eat, and that nine of them are imposters who beg to escape work, and with an evil heart practice to imposition upon the generous and sympathetic, and that only one of the ten who visit your doors is worthy of your bounty, which is best, to give food to the ten, to make sure of helping the truly needy one, or to repulse the ten because you don’t not know which is the worthy one? You will all say, administer charitable gifts to the ten, rather than turn away the only truly worth and truly needy person among them. If you do this, it will make no difference in your blessings, whether you administer to worthy or unworthy persons, inasmuch as you give alms with a single eye to assist the truly needy.”

    • Joseph says:

      Ditto on Brooks’ comments. And a great Brigham Young quote.

      In terms of worrying about what happens to your money after you die, I suggest reading Poe’s The Fall of the House of Usher (not scripture, but a great story, anyway). If you don’t get how it relates to inheritance and property, etc., check out the story that inspired Poe, E.T.A. Hoffmann’s The Entail. Give all your money away before you do if you are going to worry about what happens to it. That will give surviving family members one less thing to fight over. Controlling property beyond the grave seems very strange to me.

      “Social and economic justice without personal responsibility and accountability is absolutely wrong and should be opposed.”

      I hear that rhetoric used a lot, but what exactly does that mean? Of course we are personally responsible for sharing with others (Doctrine and Covenants 88:123, 104:18 as examples, some mentioned below, as well as King Benjamin’s speech, also mentioned below). That doesn’t mean that government can’t protect the poor from the rich.

  2. AndyBean says:

    Though John Ball was not a member I think he was one of many to lead to the restoration of the gospel. During the 14th century while fighting desperately against feudalism John Ball inspired many to join that fight for freedom by saying, “When Adam dalf and Eve span who was then a gentleman.” Who now are the workers and who are the gentleman?

  3. Aaron says:

    So, in other words, systems of economic and social inequality to ensure that the poor receive their just desserts? In other words, the poor deserve to be poor?

    Read here:

    http://scriptures.lds.org/en/mosiah/4/16-19#16

    Living the Law of Consecration, whether it be by the United Order’s appointed systems or some other, is impossible without faith, and the above comment seems lacking in it…

  4. Aaron says:

    My comment was @Bart, by the way!

  5. Maggie says:

    “Social and economic justice without personal responsibility and accountability is absolutely wrong and should be opposed”

    Which is not what is being talked about here. This is social justice not ‘social justice but only when…’

    I really love Alma 1:30
    And thus, in their prosperous circumstances, they did not send away any who were naked, or that were hungry, or that were athirst, or that were sick, or that had not been nourished; and they did not set their hearts upon riches; therefore they were liberal to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, whether out of the church or in the church, having no respect to persons as to those who stood in need.

    I’m not sure if that was what you were looking for but I always try and keep it in mind.

    Thanks for doing this!

  6. Grace Tippetts says:

    This is excellent, thank you so much for your responses.

  7. Ryan says:

    Bart, I think it’s really easy to make good choices when you were raised in an educated household by disciplined parents and you were given every opportunity for education and prosperity. I think if you were born in a project in New Orleans to a mother on crack and never knew your father and grew up in a culture that has been perpetuated for generation after generation because the south never fully healed from losing the civil war you might have a harder time making “good choices”. I think if you were born into poverty in Uganda, or Nicaragua and were raised with nothing because corrupt government officials were put into power by educated rich white people with their own best interest in mind you might find it more difficult to make “good choices”. I think it’s really easy to brush social problems off on people deserving what they get. I think if you step back and look at your situation, you don’t deserve it anymore than most of the poor people in the world deserve theirs.

  8. Tariq says:

    I like King Benjamin’s address to the people found in Mosiah. King Benjamin had no sympathy for the capitalistic attitude of — “I shouldn’t have to help the poor because the poor deserve to be poor as a result of their own bad choices, and I’m rich because I deserve to be rich because I work hard, while poor people are lazy.”

    In Mosiah chapter 4 King Bejamin says:

    “Perhaps thou shalt say: The man has brought upon himself his misery; therefore I will stay my hand, and will not give unto him of my food, nor impart unto him of my substance that he may not suffer, for his punishments are just–
    “But I say unto you, O man, whosoever doeth this the same hath great cause to repent; and except he repenteth of that which he hath done he perisheth forever, and hath no interest in the kingdom of God.
    “For behold, are we not all beggars? Do we not all depend upon the same Being, even God, for all the substance which we have, for both food and raiment, and for gold, and for silver, and for all the riches which we have of every kind?…
    “And now, if God, who has created you, on whom you are dependent for your lives and for all that ye have and are, doth grant unto you whatsoever ye ask that is right, in faith, believing that ye shall receive, O then, how ye ought to impart of the substance that he have one to another.
    “And if ye judge the man who putteth his petition to you for your substance that he perish not, and condemn him, how much more just will be your condemnation for withholding your substance, which doth not belong to you but to God, to whom also your life belongeth; and yet ye put up no petition, nor repent of the thing which thou hast done.
    “I say unto you, wo be unto that man, for his substance shall perish with him; and now, I say these things unto those who are rich as pertaining to the things of this world.”

    If King Benjamin gave that speech today, right wing nuts on FOX news and AM talk radio would call him a communist or a socialist who “hates America”.

    Also, notice that in the New Testament, Jesus has nothing nice to say about the rich; only condemnation and warnings.

    Lastly, Glenn Beck thought he was making some amazing observation when he said that the words “social justice” are not found in the scriptures. I would ask him to show me where the word “capitalism” is found in the scriptures.

  9. Kim says:

    My favorite scripture on social justice is Mosiah 4:16-22, 26.
    “Ye will not suffer that the beggar putteth up his petition to you in vain, and turn him out to perish. Perhaps thou shalt say: the man has brought upon himself his misery: therefore I will stay my hand…But I say unto you, O [Brother Beck], whosoever doeth this the same hath great cause to repent…For behold, are we not all beggars?”

    verse 26: “I would that ye should impart of your substance to the poor, every man according to that which he hath, such as feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and administering to their relief, both spiritually and temporally according to their WANTS.”

  10. Tariq says:

    Oh, and I meant to add; even though the words “social justice” are not found in the scriptures, concepts of social justice permeate the scriptures in no uncertain terms. Hugh Nibley once noted that the only way to miss these important lessons, is to read the Church’s lesson manuals instead of the actual scriptures.

  11. J. Madson says:

    Arguably the entire BoM text is a polemic against social injustice or the word it uses, inequity (coming from inequality). The OT prohibits usury, the consolidation of land into the hands of a few (as Isaiah says, the curse of joining house to house), preaches the absolution of debt, etc.

    As Tariq mentioned, the NT is full of radical ideas on economic justice. For some of the less obvious insights I suggest “Parables As Subversive Speech” by William R. Herzog.

  12. Will Greenhouse says:

    How about a “share” button that allows us to post your articles on Facebook?

  13. Bart says:

    @Aaron RE: Law of Consecration

    Living the Law of Consecration has not been asked of us. Bringing it into this conversation as if it were asked of us, or being implemented by the Federal Government is straying from the topic, not to mention completely false.

    RE: The poor receiving their just desserts…
    I never said that. I said that the implementations of our social justice systems are seriously flawed because they are instituted of man and seek to excuse some portion of the people from the natural consequences of their actions – a blatant breach of the principles of the gospel. I support the Lord’s welfare system, not the governments.

    @All – I spend at least 1 weekend each month working with the poor and needy in my local community, often more. This might be as simple a task as hauling off debris from the yard, or as complex as building a privacy wall in a shared bedroom, fixing plumbing, insulation, or painting the house. I do this because I choose to do so, not because some government agency decided it was the right thing to do. I do my best to not only solve the immediate need, but also teach them how to do this themselves in the future.

    In my efforts to help people it has been made very clear that there are some people who simply do not want to work for a living. They will come up with every possible excuse, and even a few impossible ones, to avoid taking personal responsibility for their situation and how they got there. They also show no interest in changing it because it’s easier to sit around and collect the welfare check than it is to work for a living. I believe I am following in the example set by Christ in Matthew 7:6, 2 Nephi 14:6, and D&C 41:6 where we are told not to cast our pearls before swine, and also in 2 Nephi 9:51 where we are cautioned against spending labor on that which cannot satisfy.

    I believe that D&C 90:25-27 also applies in my reasoning:
    “Let your families be asmall, especially mine aged servant Joseph Smith’s, Sen., as pertaining to those who do not belong to your families; That those things that are provided for you, to bring to pass my work, be not taken from you and given to those that are not worthy– And thereby you be hindered in accomplishing those things which I have commanded you”

    Joseph Smith, Senior was counseled to not take care of too many people because doing so would have diluted the substance provided by God for him to further the work of God.

    Let us not forget the lessons of the blessings that poverty can bring, as shown in Alma 32. There are times when people are brought into poverty to prove them – jumping in too quickly to try and ‘save’ them may actually be doing more harm than good if it is not done with the spirit of revelation and according to the will of the Lord.

    • Joseph says:

      2 Nephi 9:51 is an Isaiah quote. It is in reference to working for spiritual rewards rather than earthly. I generally try not to impose my own interpretations of scriptures on others, but your use of it completely disregards context.

  14. Jason Brown says:

    Dear Bart,

    Thank you for your responses, and the scripture references you have provided. In the spirit of friendly debate which this blog promotes, I would like to respond to several of your points.

    First, it occurs to me that we are asked to live the law of consecration. The Temple ceremony explicitly commits us to this cause, and like it or not that includes caring for the poor.

    Second, by suggesting that poverty is a result of the “natural consequences of their actions” seems dangerously close to social Darwinism. Poor people are poor because it is easier to collect a welfare check sounds like a sad appeal to a theory of human nature that I simply cannot abide. Although I applaud your call for personal responsibility, I believe that there are certain structural inequalities that are insurmountable that have been deliberately placed in the way of poor communities; Discriminatory lending practices against African Americans is just one example.

    Bart, I also applaud your work with the poor. However, I do not think that clearing yard debris is getting at the root of poverty. Doing things that others can do for themselves, (like yard work) seems to be against your principle of charity and deprives them of the valuable hard work. Social Justice is not about legislating equality or charity, but about removing structural inequalities so that people don’t have to learn to work the system just to survive. I too have worked with homeless people, and know that just giving out a meal while it may be charitable and relieve their immediate suffering (I was hungry and you fed me); it does nothing to put them back on their feet or move them toward a responsible livelihood.

    Bart, I think we want the same things, but the liberal conservative language has us all speaking in different tongues. Poverty of heart is what creates a valuable learning experience, not starvation or mercury poison, or genocide. I too want charity to come from the heart, and if the government has spent hundreds of years creating structural inequality in favor of white males, then to address social justice, we have to start with the state; not as a legislator of personal moral obligation but as part of the root cause of injustice, working toward a world where there are no poor, and if we are lucky, no state either.

  15. Bart says:

    Jason – thank you for your response.

    I did not claim that all poverty is a natural consequence of actions – if it came across that way, then allow me to correct that now. In some of the cases I have observed, this is indeed the case, but I didn’t mean to imply that it was true in every case.

    The yard work was one example of a family living in poverty where the yard waste couldn’t be moved due to an injury suffered by the parent. My wife and I were over there to try and repair a lawn mower and show the mother how to do basic maintenance on it (change oil, gas, sharpen blade, check spark plug, etc) so that she could take care of it on her own. While there we discovered that she had fallen and broken her wrist and was in need of help clearing debris that had collected prior to the accident that broke her wrist.

    With regards to the law of consecration – We have not been asked to do so, unless you are telling me that your car title and house deed are owned by the church. We have been asked to be willing to do so, but have not been asked to commit entirely to it yet. When that happens it will the United Order.

    Please refer to “http://lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?hideNav=1&locale=0&sourceId=5a1ca41f6cc20110VgnVCM100000176f620a____&vgnextoid=637e1b08f338c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD” (hope the link works)

    This contains a discussion on the law of consecration, and clearly states that we do not fully live the law of consecration today. Instead we are asked to pay tithing and fast offerings.

    “Early members of the Church lived the law of consecration for only a short while. Someday the Church will practice the law of consecration again, but today we as members are asked to live only part of the law. We are not asked to give all we have to the Church, but we are asked to pay tithing and fast offerings. Tithing and fast offerings are used to take care of the poor, build temples and meetinghouses, and provide other things such as lesson manuals. We are also asked to share our time and talents by doing things such as giving talks or teaching Primary classes. As we share, we are helping to build the kingdom of God on the earth.”

  16. John Matos says:

    I’m breaking this down into segments, once scriptural, the other quotes.

    Here the scripture portion:

    Proverbs 22: 16 

    “He that oppresseth the poor to increase his riches, and he that giveth to the rich, shall surely come to want.”


    (this is an especially interesting scripture in the light of so-called “Trickle Down Economics”)

    D&C 49: 20
    
”It is not given that one man should possess that which is above another, wherefore the world lieth in sin.”



    D&C 42:42

    ”Thou shalt not be idle; for he that is idle shall not eat the bread nor wear the garments of the laborer.”
    ——————-
    Hugh Nibley-“The idler shall not eat the bread of the laborer has always meant that the idle rich shall not eat the bread of the laboring poor, as they always have.”

    Alma 34: 28 

    “if ye turn away the needy, and the naked, and visit not the sick and afflicted, and impart of your substance, if ye have, to those who stand in need—I say unto you, if ye do not any of these things, behold, your prayer is vain, and availeth you nothing, and ye are as hypocrites who do deny the faith.”

    2 Corinthians 8: 13-15
    
”For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened: But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality: As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack.”

    3 Nephi 6:10-12,14,15

    “there began to be some disputings among the people; and some were lifted up unto pride and boastings because of their exceedingly great riches, yea, even unto great persecutions; 
For there were many merchants in the land, and also many lawyers, and many officers. 
And the people began to be distinguished by ranks, according to their
 RICHES and their CHANCES FOR LEARNING; yea, SOME WERE IGNORANT 
BECAUSE OF THEIR POVERTY, AND OTHERS DID RECEIVE GREAT LEARNING 
BECAUSE OF THEIR RICHES.
 And thus there became a great inequality in all the land”

    Helaman 4:11,12

    “Now this great loss of the Nephites, and the great slaughter which was among them, would not have happened had it not been for their wickedness and their abomination which was among them; yea, and it was among those also who professed to belong to the church of God. And it was because of the pride of their hearts, because of their exceeding riches, yea, it was because of their oppression to the poor, withholding their food from the hungry, withholding their clothing from the naked, and smiting their humble brethren upon the cheek”

    1 Timothy 6:3-10

    “Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, SUPPOSING THAT GAIN IS GODLINESS: from such withdraw thyself.”

    Mormon 8:37 
”For behold, ye do love money, and your substance, and your fine apparel, and the adorning of your churches, more than ye love the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted.”

    Mormon 8:39

    “Why do ye adorn yourselves with that which hath no life, and yet suffer the hungry, and the needy, and the naked, and the sick and the afflicted to pass by you, and notice them not?”

    Mosiah 4:17-23


    Perhaps thou shalt say: The man has brought upon himself his misery; therefore I will stay my hand, and will not give unto him of my food, nor impart unto him of my substance that he may not suffer, for his punishments are just— But I say unto you, O man, whosoever doeth this the same hath great cause to repent; and except he repenteth of that which he hath done he perisheth forever, and hath no interest in the kingdom of God. 

    For behold, are we not all beggars? Do we not all depend upon the same Being, even God, for all the substance which we have, for both food and raiment, and for gold, and for silver, and for all the riches which we have of every kind?
    
And behold, even at this time, ye have been calling on his name, and begging for a remission of your sins. And has he suffered that ye have begged in vain? Nay; he has poured out his Spirit upon you, and has caused that your hearts should be filled with joy, and has caused that your mouths should be stopped that ye could not find utterance, so exceedingly great was your joy. 

    And now, if God, who has created you, on whom you are dependent for your lives and for all that ye have and are, doth grant unto you whatsoever ye ask that is right, in faith, believing that ye shall receive, O then, how ye ought to impart of the substance that ye have one to another. 

    And if ye judge the man who putteth up his petition to you for your substance that he perish not, and condemn him, how much more just will be your condemnation for withholding your substance, which doth not belong to you but to God, to whom also your life belongeth; and yet ye put up no petition, nor repent of the thing which thou hast done. 

    I say unto you, wo be unto that man, for his substance shall perish with him; and now, I say these things unto those who are arich as pertaining to the things of this world.”

  17. John Matos says:

    Quotes:

    “The best measure or principle to bring the poor to repentance is to administer to their wants.”

    – Joseph Smith

    “The greatest temporal and spiritual blessings which always come from faithfulness and concerted effort, never attended individual exertion or enterprise.”

    -Joseph Smith
    (I throw this one in there because so many, including Beck preach that individual exertion and enterprise are among the highest goods and that blessings, riches, and privilege should be showered on those who fit their idea of what constitutes acceptable exertion and enterprise).

    “The course pursued by men of business in the world has the tendency to make a few rich, and to sink the masses of people in poverty and degredation. Too many of the Elders of Israel take this course. No matter what comes they are for gain.”

    -Brigham Young



    “The earth is here, and the fulness thereof is here. It was made for man; and one man was not made to trample his fellowmen under his feet, and enjoy all his hearts desires, while the thousands suffer.”

    -Brigham Young

    “To serve the classes that are living on them, the poor, laboring men and women are toiling, working their lives out to earn that which will keep a little life within them. Is this equality? No! What is going to be done? The Latter-day Saints will never accomplish their mission until this inequality shall cease on the earth.”

    -Brigham Young



    “An inequality of property is the root and foundation of innumerable evils; it tends to derision, and to keep asunder the social feelings that should exist among the people of God…. It is a principle originated in hell; it is the root of all evils…. It is inequality in riches that is a great curse.”

    -Orson Pratt

    “Many laws and administrative actions are simply a matter of wisdom or expediency. But many laws and administrative actions are based upon the moral standards of our society. If most of us believe that it is wrong to kill or steal or lie, our laws will include punishment for those acts. If most of us believe that it is right to care for the poor and the needy, our laws will accomplish or facilitate those activities. Society continually legislates morality. The only question is whose morality and what legislation.”

    -Elder Dallin H. Oaks

    “Suppose that in this community there are ten beggars who beg from door to door for something to eat, and that nine of them are imposters who beg to escape work, and with an evil heart practice imposition upon the generous and sympathetic, and that only one of the ten who visit your doors is worthy of your bounty; which is best, to give food to the ten, to make sure of helping the truly needy one, or to repulse the ten because you do not know which is the worthy one? You will say, administer charitable gifts to the ten, rather than turn away the only truly worthy and truly needy person among them. If you do this, it will make no difference in your blessings, whether you administer to worthy or unworthy persons, inasmuch as you give alms with a single eye to assist the truly needy.”

    – Brigham Young

    “The experience of mankind has shown that the people of communities and nations among whom wealth is the most equally distributed, enjoy the largest degree of liberty, are the least exposed to tyranny and oppression and suffer the least from luxurious habits which beget vice.”

    -Quoted from pamphlet issued by the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve, 1875

    “One of the great evils with which our own nation is menaced at the present time is the wonderful growth of wealth in the hands of a comparatively few individuals. The very liberties for which our fathers contended so steadfastly and courageously, and which they bequeathed to us as a priceless legacy, are endangered by the monstrous power which this accumulation of wealth gives to a few individuals and a few powerful corporations. By its seductive influence results are accomplished which, were it equally distributed, would be impossible under our form of government.” .”

    -Quoted from pamphlet issued by the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve, 1875

    “In view of the prevailing condition of social unrest, of the loud protest against existing systems, whereby the distribution of wealth is becoming more and more unequal,—the rich growing richer from the increasing poverty of the poor, the hand of oppression resting more and more heavily upon the masses, the consequent dissatisfaction with governments, and the half-smoldered fires of anarchy discernible in almost every nation,—may we not take comfort in the God-given promise of a better plan?—a plan which seeks without force or violence to establish a natural equality, to take the weapons of despotism from the righ, to aid the lowly and the poor, and to give every man an opportunity to live and to labor in the sphere to which he is adapted. From the tyranny of wealth, as from every other form of oppression, the truth will make men free.” —James E. Talmage, Articles of Faith, 1899, p. 454

  18. John Matos says:

    Just a few I missed:

    “Let every man and woman be industrious, prudent, and economical in their acts and feelings, and while gathering to themselves, let each one identify his or her interests with the interests of their community, with those of their neighbor and neighborhood, let them seek their happiness and welfare in that of all.”
    
-Brigham Young

    “…early LDS economic goals can be summarized under 4 headings (1) ecclesiastical sponsorship of economic growth and development; (2) ecclesiastical sponsorship of group economic independence and self-suffiency; (3) cooperation and organized group activity for attaining these goals; (4) achievement and maintainance of economic equality.”

    -quoted from The Encyclopedia of Mormonism under heading “Economic History of the Church” edited by Daniel H. Ludlow

    “From a broader view of politics…Latter-Day Saints have much greater expectations for collective action. Their theology includes a strong commitment to achieve a unified, cooperative society, characterized by spiritual convictions, strong social bonds, collective responsibility, and material equality.”

    -quoted from Encyclopedia or Mormonism under heading “Economic History of the Church” edited by Daniel H. Ludlow



    “Every rhetorician knows that his most effective weapons by far are labels. He can demolish the opposition with simple and devastating labels such as communism, socialism, or atheism , popery, militarism, or Mormonism, or give his clients’ worst crimes a religious glow with noble labels such as integrity, old-fashioned honesty, tough-mindedness, or free competitive enterprise”

    -Hugh Nibley

    Deuteronomy 15:7-8,10-11
    “If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother: 
But thou shalt open thine hand wide unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need, in that which he wanteth…Thou shalt surely give him, and thine heart shall not be grieved when thou givest unto him: because that for this thing the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thy works, and in all that thou puttest thine hand unto. 
For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land.”


    Ezekiel 16: 49
    “Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.”


  19. Forest Simmons says:

    The baptismal covenant as put forth by Alma, Sr. in Mosiah 18. Notice that verse 27 can be faithfully paraphrased as, “From each according to his abilities; to each according to his needs.”

    8 And it came to pass that he said unto them: Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light;
    9 Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, …
    10 Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?
    • • •
    21 And he commanded them that there should be no contention one with another, but that they should look forward with one eye, having one faith and one baptism, having their hearts knit together in unity and in love one towards another.
    • • •
    27 And again Alma commanded that the people of the church should impart of their substance, every one according to that which he had; if he have more abundantly he should impart more abundantly; and of him that had but little, but little should be required; and to him that had not should be given.

  20. Forest Simmons says:

    Here’s a few about the rich robbing the poor:

    Prov. 22: 22
    22 Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:

    Isa. 10: 2
    2 To turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless!

    2 Ne. 28: 13
    13 They rob the poor because of their fine sanctuaries; they rob the poor because of their fine clothing; and they persecute the meek and the poor in heart, because in their pride they are puffed up.

    How do they rob the poor “because of their fine clothing”? Think sweatshops.

  21. Forest Simmons says:

    Here’s a few on money worship:

    Matt. 6: 24
    24 ¶ No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

    Luke 16: 13
    13 ¶ No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

    1 Tim. 3: 3, 8
    3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
    • • •
    8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;

    Titus 1: 7, 11
    7 For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre;
    • • •
    11 Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre’s sake.

    3 Ne. 13: 24
    24 No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and Mammon.

  22. Jason Brown says:

    Wow! These are great quotes and scriptures! Keep’em coming.

  23. Forest Simmons says:

    Quotes on how Moroni and Moronihah dealt with captured enemy combatants and Gadianton terrorists:

    Alma 44: 15 Now there were many, when they heard these words and saw the scalp which was upon the sword, that were struck with fear; and many came forth and threw down their weapons of war at the feet of Moroni, and entered into a covenant of peace. And as many as entered into a covenant they suffered to depart into the wilderness.
    • • •
    20 And it came to pass that Moroni caused that the work of death should cease again among the people. And he took the weapons of war from the Lamanites; and after they had entered into a covenant with him of peace they were suffered to depart into the wilderness.

    Alma 46: 35 And it came to pass that whomsoever of the Amalickiahites that would not enter into a covenant to support the cause of freedom, that they might maintain a free government, he caused to be put to death; and there were but few who denied the covenant of freedom.

    Alma 62:16 And it came to pass after they had taken them, they caused them to enter into a covenant that they would no more take up their weapons of war against the Nephites.
    17 And when they had entered into this covenant they sent them to dwell with the people of Ammon, and they were in number about four thousand who had not been slain.

    3 Ne. 5: 4 And now it came to pass that when they had taken all the robbers prisoners, insomuch that none did escape who were not slain, they did cast their prisoners into prison, and did cause the word of God to be preached unto them; and as many as would repent of their sins and enter into a covenant that they would murder no more were set at liberty.

    3 Ne. 6:3 And they granted unto those robbers who had entered into a covenant to keep the peace of the land, who were desirous to remain Lamanites, lands, according to their numbers, that they might have, with their labors, wherewith to subsist upon; and thus they did establish peace in all the land.

    What a concept! Instead of locking them up indefinitely and torturing them, set them free and provide them with a way of making an honest living on the basis of their promise of good behavior.

    When the people have land “wherewith to subsist upon,” only then are they free to enter into “free market” labor contracts without duress. Otherwise they, like most Americans, are obligated to work for somebody else on unequal terms, or else starve.

  24. Forest Simmons says:

    A basic example of social justice given by the Lord:

    D&C 38: 24-27
    24 And let every man esteem his brother as himself, and practise virtue and holiness before me.
    25 And again I say unto you, let every man esteem his brother as himself.
    26 For what man among you having twelve sons, and is no respecter of them, and they serve him obediently, and he saith unto the one: Be thou clothed in robes and sit thou here; and to the other: Be thou clothed in rags and sit thou there—and looketh upon his sons and saith I am just?
    27 Behold, this I have given unto you as a parable, and it is even as I am. I say unto you, be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine.

    Some scriptures about who in reality owns everything and how He wants it distributed (else considers himself robbed):

    D&C 104:14 I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth, my very handiwork; and all things therein are mine.
    15 And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.
    16 But it must needs be done in mine own way; and behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.
    17 For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
    18 Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment.

    Mal. 3:8 ¶ Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.

    Will a man rob God? If you grab up what belongs to God and horde it, then you will, “with the wicked” lift up your eyes in hell, being in torment.

  25. Forest Simmons says:

    Some scriptures about pre-emptive war and retaliation:

    Alma 26: 9 Now do ye remember, my brethren, that we said unto our brethren in the land of Zarahemla, we go up to the land of Nephi, to preach unto our brethren, the Lamanites, and they laughed us to scorn?
    24 For they said unto us: Do ye suppose that ye can bring the Lamanites to the knowledge of the truth? Do ye suppose that ye can convince the Lamanites of the incorrectness of the traditions of their fathers, as stiffnecked a people as they are; whose hearts delight in the shedding of blood; whose days have been spent in the grossest iniquity; whose ways have been the ways of a transgressor from the beginning? Now my brethren, ye remember that this was their language.
    25 And moreover they did say: Let us take up arms against them, that we destroy them and their iniquity out of the land, lest they overrun us and destroy us.

    3 Ne. 3: 20 Now the people said unto Gidgiddoni: Pray unto the Lord, and let us go up upon the mountains and into the wilderness, that we may fall upon the robbers and destroy them in their own lands.
    21 But Gidgiddoni saith unto them: The Lord forbid; for if we should go up against them the Lord would deliver us into their hands; therefore we will prepare ourselves in the center of our lands, and we will gather all our armies together, and we will not go against them, but we will wait till they shall come against us; therefore as the Lord liveth, if we do this he will deliver them into our hands.

    Morm. 3: 9 And now, because of this great thing which my people, the Nephites, had done, they began to boast in their own strength [“we’re the super power, etc.”], and began to swear before the heavens that they would avenge themselves of the blood of their brethren who had been slain by their enemies.
    • • •
    14 And when they had sworn by all that had been forbidden them by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that they would go up unto their enemies to battle, and avenge themselves of the blood of their brethren, behold the voice of the Lord came unto me, saying:
    15 Vengeance is mine, and I will repay; and because this people repented not after I had delivered them, behold, they shall be cut off from the face of the earth.
    16 And it came to pass that I utterly refused to go up against mine enemies; and I did even as the Lord had commanded me; and I did stand as an idle witness to manifest unto the world the things which I saw and heard, according to the manifestations of the Spirit which had testified of things to come.

    D&C 98:16 Therefore, renounce war and proclaim peace, and seek diligently to turn the hearts of the children to their fathers, and the hearts of the fathers to the children;
    • • •
    23 Now, I speak unto you concerning your families—if men will smite you, or your families, once, and ye bear it patiently and revile not against them, neither seek revenge, ye shall be rewarded;
    24 But if ye bear it not patiently, it shall be accounted unto you as being meted out as a just measure unto you.
    25 And again, if your enemy shall smite you the second time, and you revile not against your enemy, and bear it patiently, your reward shall be an hundredfold.
    26 And again, if he shall smite you the third time, and ye bear it patiently, your reward shall be doubled unto you four-fold;
    • • •
    32 Behold, this is the law I gave unto my servant Nephi, and thy fathers, Joseph, and Jacob, and Isaac, and Abraham, and all mine ancient prophets and apostles.
    33 And again, this is the law that I gave unto mine ancients, that they should not go out unto battle against any nation, kindred, tongue, or people, save I, the Lord, commanded them.
    34 And if any nation, tongue, or people should proclaim war against them, they should first lift a standard of peace unto that people, nation, or tongue;

    [Think Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, (and now Iran?), where peace negotiations were hastily dispensed with.]
    • • •
    39 And again, verily I say unto you, if after thine enemy has come upon thee the first time, he repent and come unto thee praying thy forgiveness, thou shalt forgive him, and shalt hold it no more as a testimony against thine enemy—
    40 And so on unto the second and third time; and as oft as thine enemy repenteth of the trespass wherewith he has trespassed against thee, thou shalt forgive him, until seventy times seven.
    41 And if he trespass against thee and repent not the first time, nevertheless thou shalt forgive him.
    42 And if he trespass against thee the second time, and repent not, nevertheless thou shalt forgive him.
    43 And if he trespass against thee the third time, and repent not, thou shalt also forgive him.
    44 But if he trespass against thee the fourth time thou shalt not forgive him, but shalt bring these testimonies before the Lord; and they shall not be blotted out until he repent and reward thee four-fold in all things wherewith he has trespassed against thee.
    45 And if he do this, thou shalt forgive him with all thine heart; and if he do not this, I, the Lord, will avenge thee of thine enemy an hundred-fold;

  26. Forest Simmons says:

    Some scriptures warning against Cheneyism (working on the dark side):

    2 Ne. 26: 14, 19-25, 27-31, 33
    14 But behold, I prophesy unto you concerning the last days; concerning the days when the Lord God shall bring these things forth unto the children of men.
    • • •
    19 And it shall come to pass, that those who have dwindled in unbelief shall be smitten by the hand of the Gentiles.
    20 And the Gentiles are lifted up in the pride of their eyes, and have stumbled, because of the greatness of their stumbling block, that they have built up many churches; nevertheless, they put down the power and miracles of God, and preach up unto themselves their own wisdom and their own learning, that they may get gain and grind upon the face of the poor.
    21 And there are many churches [i.e. corporations; the Nephites had no other word for “corporation.” cf. 1 Nephi 22:23 below] built up which cause envyings, and strifes, and malice.
    22 And there are also secret combinations, even as in times of old, according to the combinations of the devil, for he is the founder of all these things; yea, the founder of murder, and works of darkness; yea, and he leadeth them by the neck with a flaxen cord, until he bindeth them with his strong cords forever.
    23 For behold, my beloved brethren, I say unto you that the Lord God worketh not in darkness.
    24 He doeth not anything save it be for the benefit of the world; for he loveth the world, even that he layeth down his own life that he may draw all men unto him. Wherefore, he commandeth none that they shall not partake of his salvation.
    25 Behold, doth he cry unto any, saying: Depart from me? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; but he saith: Come unto me all ye ends of the earth, buy milk and honey, without money and without price.
    • • •
    27 Hath he commanded any that they should not partake of his salvation? Behold I say unto you, Nay; but he hath given it free for all men; and he hath commanded his people that they should persuade all men to repentance.
    28 Behold, hath the Lord commanded any that they should not partake of his goodness? Behold I say unto you, Nay; but all men are privileged the one like unto the other, and none are forbidden.
    29 He commandeth that there shall be no priestcrafts; for, behold, priestcrafts are that men preach and set themselves up for a light unto the world, that they may get gain and praise of the world; but they seek not the welfare of Zion.
    30 Behold, the Lord hath forbidden this thing; wherefore, the Lord God hath given a commandment that all men should have charity, which charity is love. And except they should have charity they were nothing. Wherefore, if they should have charity they would not suffer the laborer in Zion to perish.
    31 But the laborer in Zion shall labor for Zion; for if they labor for money they shall perish.
    • • •
    33 For none of these iniquities come of the Lord; for he doeth that which is good among the children of men; and he doeth nothing save it be plain unto the children of men; and he inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female; and he remembereth the heathen; and all are alike unto God, both Jew and Gentile.

    1 Ne. 22: 23 For the time speedily shall come that all churches which are built up to get gain, and all those who are built up to get power over the flesh, and those who are built up to become popular in the eyes of the world, and those who seek the lusts of the flesh and the things of the world, and to do all manner of iniquity; yea, in fine, all those who belong to the kingdom of the devil are they who need fear, and tremble, and quake; they are those who must be brought low in the dust; they are those who must be consumed as stubble; and this is according to the words of the prophet.

    Alma 37: 31
    31 Yea, and cursed be the land forever and ever unto those workers of darkness and secret combinations, even unto destruction, except they repent before they are fully ripe.

    3 Ne. 7: 6
    6 And the regulations of the government were destroyed, because of the secret combination of the friends and kindreds of those who murdered the prophets.

    3 Ne. 9: 9
    9 And behold, that great city Jacobugath, which was inhabited by the people of king Jacob, have I caused to be burned with fire because of their sins and their wickedness, which was above all the wickedness of the whole earth, because of their secret murders and combinations; for it was they that did destroy the peace of my people and the government of the land; therefore I did cause them to be burned, to destroy them from before my face, that the blood of the prophets and the saints should not come up unto me any more against them.

    Morm. 8: 27
    27 And it shall come in a day when the blood of saints shall cry unto the Lord, because of secret combinations and the works of darkness.

    Ether 8: 18-19, 22-24
    18 And it came to pass that they formed a secret combination, even as they of old; which combination is most abominable and wicked above all, in the sight of God;
    19 For the Lord worketh not in secret combinations, neither doth he will that man should shed blood, but in all things hath forbidden it, from the beginning of man.
    • • •
    22 And whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not.
    23 Wherefore, O ye Gentiles, it is wisdom in God that these things should be shown unto you, that thereby ye may repent of your sins, and suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain—and the work, yea, even the work of destruction come upon you, yea, even the sword of the justice of the Eternal God shall fall upon you, to your overthrow and destruction if ye shall suffer these things to be.
    24 Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up.

  27. Forest Simmons says:

    Powerful words of Moroni directed to us on the topic of social justice:

    Morm. 8:35 Behold, I speak unto you as if ye were present, and yet ye are not. But behold, Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me, and I know your doing.
    36 And I know that ye do walk in the pride of your hearts; and there are none save a few only who do not lift themselves up in the pride of their hearts, unto the wearing of very fine apparel, unto envying, and strifes, and malice, and persecutions, and all manner of iniquities; and your churches, yea, even every one, have become polluted because of the pride of your hearts.
    37 For behold, ye do love money, and your substance, and your fine apparel, and the adorning of your churches, more than ye love the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted.
    38 O ye pollutions, ye hypocrites, ye teachers, who sell yourselves for that which will canker, why have ye polluted the holy church of God? Why are ye ashamed to take upon you the name of Christ? Why do ye not think that greater is the value of an endless happiness than that misery which never dies—because of the praise of the world?
    39 Why do ye adorn yourselves with that which hath no life, and yet suffer the hungry, and the needy, and the naked, and the sick and the afflicted to pass by you, and notice them not?
    40 Yea, why do ye build up your secret abominations to get gain, and cause that widows should mourn before the Lord, and also orphans to mourn before the Lord, and also the blood of their fathers and their husbands to cry unto the Lord from the ground, for vengeance upon your heads?
    41 Behold, the sword of vengeance hangeth over you; and the time soon cometh that he avengeth the blood of the saints upon you, for he will not suffer their cries any longer.

    The “saints” mean the innocent women and children that suffer because of our wars, both class wars and the shooting wars that are so profitable for the capitalists.

  28. Forest Simmons says:

    The resurrected Lord’s warning, repeated three times by Him and once by Mormon, to the Super Power of the latter days, i.e. what will happen to the USA if we continue in our blind, arrogant “patriotic” hubris:

    3 Ne. 16: 10-12, 15
    10 And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you: At that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my gospel, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, and shall be lifted up in the pride of their hearts above all nations, and above all the people of the whole earth, and shall be filled with all manner of lyings, and of deceits, and of mischiefs, and all manner of hypocrisy, and murders, and priestcrafts, and whoredoms, and of secret abominations; and if they shall do all those things, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, behold, saith the Father, I will bring the fulness of my gospel from among them.
    11 And then will I remember my covenant which I have made unto my people, O house of Israel, and I will bring my gospel unto them.
    12 And I will show unto thee, O house of Israel, that the Gentiles shall not have power over you; but I will remember my covenant unto you, O house of Israel, and ye shall come unto the knowledge of the fulness of my gospel.
    • • •
    15 But if they will not turn unto me, and hearken unto my voice, I will suffer them, yea, I will suffer my people, O house of Israel, that they shall go through among them, and shall tread them down, and they shall be as salt that hath lost its savor, which is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of my people, O house of Israel.

    3 Ne. 20: 16
    16 Then shall ye, who are a remnant of the house of Jacob, go forth among them; and ye shall be in the midst of them who shall be many; and ye shall be among them as a lion among the beasts of the forest, and as a young lion among the flocks of sheep, who, if he goeth through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver.

    3 Ne. 21: 12
    12 And my people who are a remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles, yea, in the midst of them as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep, who, if he go through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver.

    Morm. 5: 24
    24 Therefore, repent ye, and humble yourselves before him, lest he shall come out in justice against you—lest a remnant of the seed of Jacob shall go forth among you as a lion, and tear you in pieces, and there is none to deliver.

    Those were Mormon’s parting words to the American Gentiles.

  29. James says:

    I haven’t yet seen D&C 84:112
    “And the bishop, Newel K. Whitney, also should travel round about and among all the churches, searching after the poor to administer to their wants by humbling the rich and the proud.”

  30. Kate says:

    Although I think that Glenn Beck is not worth addressing with any sort of seriousness or sanity, since clearly he does not think that anyone else is…

    READ THIS ARTICLE by Richard Johnson. It is one of the best things I’ve read on the subject.

    “How long will LDS church members join mainstream America in not only condoning, but admiring and pursuing, worldly self- aggrandizement? Might not the great lesson for the last days be that in order for peace to prevail or for Zion “with no poor among them” to be established, that there must also be no rich among them?”

  31. Tariq says:

    Kate, thanks for the Richard Johnson article. I agree with you that it’s one of the best on the subject.

  32. Forest Simmons says:

    The Richard Johnson article, which was written in 1994, has lots of statistics about the grinding poverty and inequality in the USA up to that time. It has gotten much worse. That was before Clinton’s ending “welfare as we know it” law, the Bush tax cuts for the rich, etc.

    He has a great list of social justice scriptures including this one from D&C 49 that nobody else has mentioned so far:

    D&C 49: 20 But it is not given that one man should possess that which is above another, wherefore the world lieth in sin.

  33. SUNNofaB.C.Rich says:

    interestingly enough, according to the mormon “war in heaven” story, Lucifer was a communist.

    • Joseph says:

      As noted below, your description of Lucifer is an interpretation of that story. It is not actual LDS Doctrine. A more accurate description would be “Lucifer was a totalitarian.” There is a difference between communism/socialism and the totalitarianism that tried to pass itself off under those names in Russia, China, and other countries.

  34. Felix says:

    Yes, Lucifer may have been a communist, in the sense that he wanted to enslave people under his will while God order the people to be free. A communist in american terminology is someone who wants dictatorship over all living things and a capitalist just wants to be free.

  35. SUNNofaB.C.Rich says:

    more in the sense that under lucifers plan everyone would be equal, saving those who would fail miserably at the expense of those who would excel greatly etc etc etc. Of course you all agree that Lucifer was evil and all that. If you want to redistribute your own wealth in a way that works for you, go ahead… Just don’t try and make me redistribute my wealth in a way that I don’t want, Lucifer.

    • J. Madson says:

      You are making up stuff. There is nothing in scripture to indicate that everyone would be equal in any economic sense from Lucifer’s plan (the scriptures do however command us to be equal in temporal things as part of God’s plan). There is nothing in Lucifer’s plan about those who are less valiant being saved at someone else’s expense. There is nothing about redistributing wealth.

      If you want to make a political argument do so, but stop wresting the scriptures to fit your particular ideology. It is lame.

      • Brooks W. Wilson says:

        No, he isn’t. You are ignoring “stuff.” Stuff like Acts, chapter 4 verses 32-37.

        31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were aassembled together; and they were all filled with the bHoly Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.

        32 And the multitude of them that believed were of aone heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that bought of the things which he cpossessed was his own; but they had all things dcommon.

        33 And with great power gave the apostles awitness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great bgrace was upon them all.

        34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses asold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,

        35 And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and adistribution was made unto every man according as he had bneed.

        36 And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed aBarnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus,

        37 Having land, sold it, and brought the amoney, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.

        There are many more but this one would make the point.

      • Joseph says:

        Brooks, I think you misunderstand what J. was saying. J.’s response was to SUNNofaB.C.Rich’s comment about Satan being a communist (which there is not scriptural backing for), not against the notion of scripture supporting social justice or economic equality. The scripture you quote is a wonderful demonstration that it was the early Christians, not Lucifer, who were communists.

        I agree with what you are saying, it’s just that you are arguing with the wrong person. I suspect J. would agree with you. It is SUNNofaB.C.Rich who is making stuff up and ignoring other stuff. And, while SUNN has professed that he is not LDS, your scripture is a great one since it is from the Bible rather than uniquely LDS scripture. Even if SUNN is not a believer, I suspect he/she would have to recognize the Bible as an important cultural document that other conservatives love to misuse!

      • Joseph says:

        Though there are some conservatives who do recognize how socialist the Bible actually is:

        http://www.observer-reporter.com/www/2009/12/not-good-enough-book.html

        Maybe their “fixed” version will help others of the LDS Faith who think that John Birch was an unrecognized prophet! Of course, that won’t fix the Book of Mormon (an even more blatantly socialist tract).

  36. Kat says:

    First of all thanks for compiling all of these in one place. Will these be put into some sort of format that I can post or share with others not on this thread? I think it could be an amazing teaching tool.

    Second: According to LDS theology Lucifer’s plan was NOT that everyone would be equal. It was that no one would be capable of sin. We would not have the ability or will to choose. Period. We would all be saved because we could not fail. We also would not grow and would ultimately be incapable of reaching individual godhood. Also, Lucifer would get all the collective glory of saving us from ourselves. The war was fought over the ability to will to choose, the ability to both fail and reach ultimate enlightenment. It is a gross misread of LDS doctrine to think he wanted us all to be equal, you must have heard of the concept of “Choice and Accountability” this is where it comes from.

  37. Kat says:

    Also, according to scripture there is no such thing as having anything of “your” own. God gave you all of it. Remember you didn’t “earn” it you were blessed with it. This is where the doctrine of tithing comes from. Its an acknowledgement that it doesn’t really belong to you. Tithing is practice for living the Law of Consecration. You don’t have any wealth any more than the next person really has it, you just have the arrogant belief that you do. LDS people, by doctrine, do not have “personal” anything, we may function in US society practically as if we do, but we also believe that the day is coming where we will live under a just law where everything is held in common. All people would benefit from practicing for that day in both mind and deed. We have lost our peculiar ways and are too “american” for the radical doctrine of the faith.

  38. Kristina says:

    3 Nephi3-4:
    “…and thus they did establish peace in all the land. And they began again to prosper and to wax great… and they had formed their laws according to equity and justice. ”

    Also notice that the righteous society described in 3rd Nephi began to become wicked when they began to divide themselves by ranks and class distinctions. (see 3 Nephi 12, versus 10-16. The entire book of 3rd Nephi is a clear argument for social justice.

  39. Jason Brown says:

    For more discussion on the notion that Communism is Satan’s Plan, see my previous post on the matter at: https://themormonworker.wordpress.com/2009/02/15/satans-counterfeit-or-convenient-deception/

    I personally think Communism was Satan’s Red Herring, for his real plan: Capitalism.

    • Joseph says:

      I remember that post and I definitely enjoyed it. Above I use the term “totalitarianism” because I think that better describes what is at issue. Totalitarians are willing to use any political or economic system to get power.

  40. Joseph says:

    Okay, my contributions (I have to get obscure since all my personal favorites have been listed above):

    Exodus 16:18 And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating.

    cross referenced to:

    2 Corinthians 8:15 As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack.

    Also, in Exodus 16:20, when individuals tried to get more than they needed that day, the manna went bad.

    Also 4 Nephi. I read a while back some honors course transcripts from a Book of Mormon course Hugh Nibley taught. It actually was not Nibley who covered 4 Nephi, but John Welch as a substitute. I can’t remember the exact quote, and I don’t have the books with me anymore, but he basically pointed out that in 4 Nephi, as much as he hated to admit it as a lawyer, the people do away with government (the Law of Moses was essentially their government, and once that was gone, no government). They also do away with property: 1:3 “they had all things common among them.” So, no property and no government sounds like an anarcho-socialist society to me.

    I also searched for “social justice” on the lds.org site and found that it is there, sometimes in a negative context, but not always. So, bye bye Beck! Can’t say you’ll be missed.

    I really was trying to stay quiet a bit, but this is such a great discussion!

  41. Forest Simmons says:

    True, the exact phrase “social justice” is not found in the quad, but the word “liberal” is, and it is always used as a positive trait, except possibly in one place where it associated with “fatness.” Of course, fatness used to be considered good, too.

    Here are all of the scriptures in the English quad that contain the word “liberal.” According to them, God is a liberal!

    Isa. 32: 5, 8
    5 The vile person shall be no more called liberal, nor the churl said to be bountiful.
    • • •
    8 But the liberal deviseth liberal things; and by liberal things shall he stand.

    JS-H 1: 11, 13
    11 While I was laboring under the extreme difficulties caused by the contests of these parties of religionists, I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
    • • •
    13 At length I came to the conclusion that I must either remain in darkness and confusion, or else I must do as James directs, that is, ask of God. I at length came to the determination to “ask of God,” concluding that if he gave wisdom to them that lacked wisdom, and would give liberally, and not upbraid, I might venture.

    Deut. 15: 14
    14 Thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress: of that wherewith the Lord thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.

    Prov. 11: 25
    25 The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.

    1 Cor. 16: 3
    3 And when I come, whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem.

    2 Cor. 8: 2
    2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

    2 Cor. 9: 13
    13 Whiles by the experiment of this ministration they glorify God for your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal distribution unto them, and unto all men;

    James 1: 5
    5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

    2 Ne. 4: 35
    35 Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh. Yea, my God will give me, if I ask not amiss; therefore I will lift up my voice unto thee; yea, I will cry unto thee, my God, the rock of my righteousness. Behold, my voice shall forever ascend up unto thee, my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen.

    Alma 1: 30
    30 And thus, in their prosperous circumstances, they did not send away any who were naked, or that were hungry, or that were athirst, or that were sick, or that had not been nourished; and they did not set their hearts upon riches; therefore they were liberal to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, whether out of the church or in the church, having no respect to persons as to those who stood in need.

    Alma 6: 5
    5 Now I would that ye should understand that the word of God was liberal unto all, that none were deprived of the privilege of assembling themselves together to hear the word of God.

    D&C 42: 68
    68 Therefore, he that lacketh wisdom, let him ask of me, and I will give him liberally and upbraid him not.

    D&C 46: 7
    7 But ye are commanded in all things to ask of God, who giveth liberally; and that which the Spirit testifies unto you even so I would that ye should do in all holiness of heart, walking uprightly before me, considering the end of your salvation, doing all things with prayer and thanksgiving, that ye may not be seduced by evil spirits, or doctrines of devils, or the commandments of men; for some are of men, and others of devils.

  42. Forest Simmons says:

    Why was Lucifer such a control freak? Because if you have total control, then you avoid all suffering. “No muss, no fuss.”

    The minute you give your children any freedom, you start getting lots of messes to clean up.

    Lucifer wanted glory without getting his hands dirty.

    Like Lucifer, capitalists are control freaks. No matter how much money they have, as long as they don’t have complete control over their gated environment, they need more.

  43. Brooks W. Wilson says:

    To Joseph. You are right, my bad. I have a little trouble on this format understanding who is saying what to who (whom?). Forgive me. My intentions are honorable but I’m really old!!!!

  44. Joseph says:

    Brooks,

    I find the format a bit confusing as well. That’s why I thought I would help clarify. The scriptures and quotes you shared were great. Your intentions were honorable and what you had to say was right on, so don’t worry about age. I certainly appreciated what you had to share!

  45. J. Madson says:

    Brooks,

    Joseph is correct that I was responding to the assertion that Lucifer’s plan was afoot.

    Acts 4 is a great scripture btw. The historical reality is that early Christians practiced communal ownership and were very cognizant of social justice. The format is a little difficult, I agree. I changed the theme to include comment numbers so that should help. Once we overhaul the paper website and the blog site we should have a consistent and clean look.

  46. Forest Simmons says:

    Now that the comments have slowed to a crawl, who will compile and summarize them into the contemplated open letter to Glenn Beck?

    If Sonya Johnson had to be excommunicated because of her public apostasy, who will bring brother Beck and Mitt Romney to account for the bad publicity they have given against Mormonism?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 257 other followers

Categories

Archives

%d bloggers like this: