Friday, February 27, 2009

LDSWhy.com Tells Youth Why...

Got Youth?  Point them to LDSWhy.com with the questions they won't ask you but that you know they have.  I give this site points on the engaging design alone.  It's eye-candy and fun to fiddle around with on its own.  But the value it carries is priceless when you consider how many LDS youth are ashamed or afraid to ask simple questions about what they learn in Seminary.  Why?  Fear of what peers will think of them for asking and/or fear of knowing God will expect them to live up to a higher standard while everyone around them seems to be striving to live the lowest standards possible.  Just move your mouse over the numbers and it spins like a jukebox of inquiries of eternal import.  Your question isn't there? Ask it in the form to the top right.  Answers appear in the excellently put together blog.  There are other resources on the top left.  Of course, there's a book you can buy, as well as an official Facebook page.

Improvements at American Testament

You may have noticed some changes to the American Testament blog.  For one, we're experimenting with Google's AdSense to display LDS-relevant advertisements under each post. One hundred percent of the monetary proceeds of people clicking on these ads will go toward funding improvements for LuckyHill Orphanage near Accra, Ghana.  So, spread the word! :)

If you see an ad that seems out of place for the theme of the blog, please bear with me. I'm trying to tweak which sites are allowed to display their ads here.  Needless to say, if you see ads selling "Discounts on LDS Garments!", chances are you're not going to find what you're looking for there.  That's because so many advertisers target keywords and just slap them together with their boilerplate ad text on the off chance that you're looking for an item to buy described by that keyword.

We've also added a custom search engine to further enhance the value of the site.  It's the search box on the top right of the page.  With this search engine, you can simultaneously search the multiple LDS Web sites for content.  This helps people who want to do research into the LDS Church and doctrinal topics, but don't want to be exposed to anti-Mormon propaganda, salacious rumors, adult web sites, and incomplete or outright deceptive "research".  Here are the sites (in no particular order of importance) the search currently covers.
  • fair-lds.org 
  • maxwellinstitute.com 
  • mormon.org 
  • lds.org 
  • ldscatalog.com 
  • deseretbook.com 
  • americantestament.blogspot.com
If you wish to see others included, please provide a URL in the comments.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Recounting of Jewish History (2 Nephi 6)

Listen now!Jacob, the younger brother of Nephi, was given the role of teacher and priest to the people.  In this chapter, he tells the people how concerned he is for their salvation and education in their history and their future.  He turns to Isaiah for this instruction.

The words he quotes are about all the house of Israel (all 12 tribes).  He first emphasizes Isaiah's teaching that the Gentiles would become a support to Israel in the last days.

  7 And akings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers; they shall bow down to thee with their faces towards the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know thatbI am the Lord; for they shall not be ashamed that cwait for me.

Next, Jacob reminds them that Israel was under condemnation when they left Jerusalem over 50 years before and tells them that it has been revealed to him by an angel that Jerusalem was conquered as prophesied by Lehi.  The good news is that those who were carried away captive would return in the future.  Jesus Christ would come to them, but unfortunately they would crucify him.  This treatment of their King would result in many more years of affliction and scattering for the Jews.  But, when they turn back to the Lord, they will be gathered again and saved from their enemies.

Jacob then pronounces a blessing on the Gentiles for their repentance and support of Israel, and for not becoming part of the organizations and churches set up to tear down the Church of God.

Christ, unlike with his first advent when he was born as an infant and later scourged, mocked, and crucified, will then come to show Himself in all His glory.  He will destroy all of Israel's enemies by fire, tempest, earthquakes, bloodshed, pestilence, and famine, and preserve all of those who believe on Him.  At that time, everyone will know that Jesus Christ is the Savior, the Redeemer, and the Mighty One of Jacob (father Israel).