The Assassination of the Early Apostles

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Prison

Jesus Christ

(Whose Hebrew name is spelled Yehoshua, meaning, Yes Father, I will): Was burdened in the garden of Gethsemane, with those burdens caused by those who hurt their fellow man, thus first taking the pains and afflictions of those who had been hurt, and abused by their oppressors.

Later, when in Roman rule and interrogation, He was striped, with His body still covered in His blood, and mockingly re-robed in a scarlet robe, symbolizing kingly reign. Next, He was again mocked with an earthly crown of thorns, wherein His blood was shed through His head, in which He drained out our impure thoughts, as part of His continuing atonement.

Then, He was again unencumbered, and scourged, with a multi-faceted woven whip, enclosing flint and bone, wherein He took the beating for us, in which we deserved the penalty, for our demerits.

Next, He was made to carry His cross beam up hill, from the streets of Jerusalem, to Calvary, which among the mockers, there was found a mourner among the few, who stepped forward to carry His cross, when our dear Christ stumbled, symbolizing our part to take, when we see others suffer and struggle in life.

Then, the dear Christ was fastened to the Cross, in sacred covenant, symbolizing Jesus Christ giving his life for the Church.

After He hung for some time, seeing that he had not died, they attempted to administer bile and vinegar, a poisonous mixture intended to kill. This mixture would have also deadened or numbed some of the pain He was experiencing, which was not appropriate.

After this was unsuccessful, they pierced a Roman spear through His side, in which all of the bitterness, built up from still experiencing and performing the atonement and work of salvation, was drained from Him. Again, our pains and bitterness were relieved from our bowels, through His atoning mercy. This still did not kill Him.

Three hours later, His Father, then allowed His Son to feel the entire weight of self existence, there on His own, withholding divine support, so as to complete His mission.

Three minutes later, the Christ voluntarily sent up His Spirit to The Father, with the words, “It is finished, Father, receive my Spirit.”

This is significant, because He was the only one, who could voluntarily leave His body. He was also the only one, who could then bless through healing, perfecting, and then voluntarily re-entering His body. This process is known as a sacred ordinance, or the resurrection.

Peter

Was crucified upside down, on an upside cross, because he told his tormentors that he felt unworthy to die in the same way that Jesus Christ had died (according to early church tradition).

James

(the brother of Jesus): Who was the leader of the church in Jerusalem, was chased, and then pushed over the southeast pinnacle of the Temple in Jerusalem, where he refused to deny his faith in Christ. He survived the hundred foot drop, and when the on-watching Romans discovered that he had survived the fall, they beat him to death with a “fuller’s” club. This was the same pinnacle where the Spirit (or Arc Angel), had taken Jesus, after which came the tempter.

John

Faced martyrdom, when he was thrown into a huge basin of boiling oil, during a wave of preaching in Rome. He was miraculously delivered from death. John was then sentenced to the prison mines on the  island of Patmos. While there, he wrote his prophetic Book of Revelation. After John was translated (into a form in which he could not be killed) John returned to serve as Bishop of Edessa in modern Turkey.

Matthew

Was wounded by a sword, and suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia.

Mark

Was killed in Alexandria, Egypt, by being tied, put into a chariot, pushed out, being dragged by horses through the streets, until he was dead.

Luke

Was hung in Greece, because of his tremendous preaching to the lost.

Other Apostles

(Whose names are found in the book of The Acts of the Apostles): Were likewise killed by Roman influence and reign.

This finally gave way for the new order to begin. Namely the Roman Catholic.

Relationships, Meeting In The Middle

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The cosmos…

Newton’s law – Every action, has an equal and opposite reaction. (Paraphrased by: Shane R. Brown)

Particles, elements… What we all have in common.

  • Who are we?

We are all entities. Yes, individual forms with varying traits, but each, not surprisingly, with the same capacity and force as all other entities. So, what else are we?

We are not only beings of energy, light, and understanding, but also, beings of emotional feeling. Yes, we are more than just chemical reactors, but more like agents made to act for ourselves. We all have the ability to choose.

In this sphere, on and in which we dwell, we have other entities all around us, namely, other humans. What we do does effect each other, and always will, through our thoughts, deeds, efforts and feelings.

  • Why relationships?

Another more devious question to counter would be, why not, right?

Because we are all equal in entity, we humans need to understand, that continuing to treat each other with equality is best.

When practiced, it is also found to be the easiest, healthiest, and most productive way to interact. Truly the most rewarding way to accomplish life itself.

This is why we should give our all, 100%. Yet, because we are separate entities, this preferred giving, also means meeting each other in the middle. When we meet in connection between each other, by giving our parts of 100%, then true exchange can be given.

In this way, we continue in mutual enjoyment, and are giving equally to our relationships.

Ta-da!

May we all strive to meet each other in the middle, thus failing to undermine ourselves, and eventually, society as a whole.

Shane

Clarity, a Clarion Call

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Temple

The scriptures teach explicitly what it takes to stand solid on unshifting ground. To be built upon the rock of Christ, and not fall when the devil and his kingdom falls.

The Book of Mormon is especially clear when it outlines the foibles and problems of our day, and then affirms the only way to safely guide us home.

What I find most interesting, is how clearly it defines the state and conditions of the world today, as it was written for our day, by prophets who foresaw our time, and were specifically called to minister for our day.

As this book of scripture only goes to strengthen the testimony of the Bible, and helps clarify some of its teachings (commonly misunderstood without it), it is especially important for us.

Not only does it outline truth, but it also testifies that the true church which Christ originally established, has been again brought forth and established in our day.

In 1820, a young farm boy at the age of 14, was called to restore Christ’s church, through means of asking a question in prayer, about a question he had, impromptu of a verse from reading the Holy Bible.

In answer to his prayer, he had the visitation in a grove of trees near his small home, of Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ.

They told him many things, and that he had a work to do. Later, and angel sent from God, came by his bedside, and told him about an ancient record, which was written by prophets over the course of about 1,000 years. It was covered in a hillside, not a far distance from his homestead.

This record was then translated by this young man, by means of heavenly aid into English. Eventually, through this young man, the Lord set up and established His church again, calling this young man to be the church’s first prophet and restorer of Christ’s in 1830.

As part of His church’s restoration, is the priesthood authority restored, which authorizes the use of the saving ordinances, such as baptism and the receiving of the gift of the Holy Ghost, to be wholly pure and valid.

Just as the Lord authorized His servants the prophets and apostles to speak and have it recorded in holy writ through scriptures, today, we hear every 6 months from these inspired prophets, apostles and women leaders, and have their words written and recorded and shared before the world to have use therefrom.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is wholly upon the earth today, and is acceptable of Him who is the head thereof, and yes, He will manifest the truth of this work through the Holy Spirit, to anyone who asks in sincere faith. Consider this verse from The Book of Mormon:

3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things (meaning The Book of Mormon), if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.

4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things. Mormon 10:3-5

Yes, the work of the Lord is at work among us, here, now, and you can be a part of it! I would ask you, as does Moroni, the prophet who made the above request and promise, that you look into this church of Christ, namely, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Here are two links to look at in your search for the truth of these things.

The church’s official website:

https://www.lds.org/

And the church’s official site about meeting members of the church:

https://www.mormon.org/

Thank you and God bless!

Shane

Fasting, a Renewing and Focused Approach

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Prayer

As I have the opportunity to fast for members of my family, I am reminded of at least three reasons why fasting and prayer are more efficacious than normal prayer. For one, as we are obedient to something that is a challenge, the Lord has more room to bless us. Second, because while we go without food or drink, we are driven to consider our need, and in this He is the resource of our aid, not food or drink. As we come unto Him for our needed spiritual and physical help, we open up the door to greater communion and unity. Third, because of our submission to the Spirit, our wills are more aligned to His, because we recognize and honor Him as our sustainer and law giver. We promise to do His will and yield ourselves unto Him. It is all three of these reasons and more, that give fasting a more purifying, purposeful and effective result.

A forth one to consider, is when I am struggling to get through and keep my fast, the actual suffering itself, with the persons or situations in mind, will experience a relief of their suffering, as the trials they are experiencing, are then transfered with love, onto the one(s) fasting for their relief. The difference is, that because the faster is drawing unto the Lord, it is He who takes the pain and burden, as it is He who does so through the atonement for everyone anyway. We just need to let Him. If someone is in need of extra help, we can be that means for them, and Christ will do His part.

It is because of this, that it is a communal effort, in which loved ones combine, to cover an ailment of the one or many, and give them the strength to make it through. In other words, it is a labor of love.

Patience, an Enabling Virtue

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Class

As I have studied and pondered what I might next portray in this my testimony blog, I have desired to impart knowledge as it relates to my recent experience with patience. In my schooling, both academic and spiritual, as I am attending a school under The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a church school, I have been well pleased to find that this school does not separate the educational learning model of faith and academics. They are combined under the principle that all true learning, whether spiritual or academic, is taught through the Holy Ghost.

Indeed, only the truth will be taught by the Holy Ghost. There are precepts taught by man’s learning and understanding, which are not true or correct, but under the umbrella of learning through the Holy Ghost, only truth is taught, and under this influence, truth can be discerned from error, and one can avoid being deceived.

It is in my spiritual studies as of late, which I have come to learn and ponder much, about the subject of patience. Only using the scriptures and the words of the prophets to give insights to this topic, and that which I have studied in this my schooling of recent undertaking, I will attempt to share with you my feelings and findings, which I hope you will find to be useful.

President Uchtdorf, of the First Presidency in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, in a recent general conference talk, speaks of patience. He talks about how, “…patience will transform ordinary men and women into saints and angels.” How, “…patience means staying with something until the end; delaying instant gratification for future blessings; it means reigning in anger, and holding back an unkind word. It means submitting to all things which the Lord sees fit to inflict upon us…”.

Truly patience is a virtue that will help us acquire all the other Christ-like virtues we so desperately need. Although it is such a high and refining trait, I know that by seeking to obtain this spiritual gift, we will be greatly blessed. In the pursuit of this goal, I know that my ability to bless my family will be enhanced, and I will experience greater joy.

In this journey over the next few years, I will be a faithful father, son and husband, pressing ever onward, toward the most glorious goal of all that our Father in Heaven has for us to be, even as He.

May we all seek to improve ourselves, and do so through the greater exercise of patience.

Ones and Zeros: Part Two

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In our first post in this series, we talked about the two forces of power and no power, to show a balance, created by the light and dark, or opposition in all things, to cause growth and agency (the ability to choose between right and wrong) possible. In this post, the source of these two powers will be looked at more closely, namely Christ as the light, and Satan as the dark.

We know that every good thing comes from Christ, so everything righteous, edifying and godly is from Him, whether or not we as individuals acknowledge this or not. Whether it’s the fact that we have this earth life, or time, this probationary state to prove ourselves, made possible by the atonement, or the ability to do good, also made possible through Christ’s atonement, or something specific, such as an answered prayer, it’s all from Him.

The backdrop of all of this then, would be that opposition, or dark, is a necessary part of God’s plan, for as the scriptures state: “For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, …righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.”

We need both to have balance and order, and a way to move forward and grow. Now, Christ is the One, and Satan is the Zero. As the scriptures state, “…for there is One God and One Shepherd over all the earth.”

It is between the workings of both righteousness and sin, that we have our agency and pathway home. We must choose the good, and repent of our sins. We must accept and live Christ’s gospel, and all of the ordinances, priesthood power and truths found therein.

We must strive to become better and give ourselves to the Lord, so that we can be one in Him, even as Christ is One with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Then, we can be ready to enter into the Heaven Christ has prepared for us, even the Celestial kingdom.

The Great Atonement, our Part: Part Two

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The biggest half of accessing the atonement comes first, as we faithfully study the Lord, his commandments, and all things pertaining to faith, hope, trust charity and repentance. In essence, the gospel.

After we have done this, and have started using this knowledge to heal and make changes in our lives and hearts, then comes part two. This second half will be explained in what follows, in regards to the experience of accessing the atonement,.as it relates to recovery from addiction.

There are many factors in line with addiction recovery, and many people’s experience with it proves to be a special, unique and specific experience, where the Lord walks down each path individually with the individual.

Each person therein has specific needs, circumstances and trials which need to be addressed, but one thing is sure, even as a person is supposed to enter into personal prayer and scripture study daily, and regular Temple attendance, utilizing their knowledge of the gospel and understanding of the atonement, even unto the accessing of it for healing, there is still one thing missing.

One needs to invite the actual participation of Jesus Christ into their personal lives to help them. He needs to be their guide and maker of calls in our trusting, faith fulfilling pathway of recovery. Let Him in to do the work of preparing the way, and follow His lead in what he wants for you.

In this there is real life, the way God wants all of His children to live, with He as our guiding destiny.

We need to actually be aware of Him in and as a part of our life, and cognizant of the relations and interactions we are having with Him. To become truly converted through living with and for Him.