Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

When Did Revelation and Scripture Stop?

Contrary to the title of the talk, "My Words . . . Never Cease" by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland was only about 20 minutes long. A relief, to be sure - unlike the last talk I gave which went a bit over. And there was a lot packed into his sermon. He takes on the allegation that Latter-day Saints aren't Christians because we've added scripture and had modern revelation. It's so ironic actually, because that's exactly what early Christians did. There's a reason it is now called the NEW Testament. It was new scripture. New revelation. Added. Even though Moses said that no one should add or subtract to the word (Deut. 4).

Below is an excerpt from his talk. Footnotes have been omitted -- see the original.
One of the arguments often used in any defense of a closed canon is the New Testament passage recorded in Revelation 22:18: “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of … this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book.” However, there is now overwhelming consensus among virtually all biblical scholars that this verse applies only to the book of Revelation, not the whole Bible. Those scholars of our day acknowledge a number of New Testament “books” that were almost certainly written after John’s revelation on the Isle of Patmos was received. Included in this category are at least the books of Jude, the three Epistles of John, and probably the entire Gospel of John itself. Perhaps there are even more than these.

But there is a simpler answer as to why that passage in the final book of the current New Testament cannot apply to the whole Bible. That is because the whole Bible as we know it—one collection of texts bound in a single volume--did not exist when that verse was written. For centuries after John produced his writing, the individual books of the New Testament were in circulation singly or perhaps in combinations with a few other texts but almost never as a complete collection. Of the entire corpus of 5,366 known Greek New Testament manuscripts, only 35 contain the whole New Testament as we now know it, and 34 of those were compiled after a.d. 1000.

The fact of the matter is that virtually every prophet of the Old and New Testament has added scripture to that received by his predecessors. If the Old Testament words of Moses were sufficient, as some could have mistakenly thought them to be, then why, for example, the subsequent prophecies of Isaiah or of Jeremiah, who follows him? To say nothing of Ezekiel and Daniel, of Joel, Amos, and all the rest. If one revelation to one prophet in one moment of time is sufficient for all time, what justifies these many others? What justifies them was made clear by Jehovah Himself when He said to Moses, “My works are without end, and ... my words ... never cease.”

One Protestant scholar has inquired tellingly into the erroneous doctrine of a closed canon. He writes: “On what biblical or historical grounds has the inspiration of God been limited to the written documents that the church now calls its Bible? … If the Spirit inspired only the written documents of the first century, does that mean that the same Spirit does not speak today in the church about matters that are of significant concern?” We humbly ask those same questions.

Continuing revelation does not demean or discredit existing revelation. The Old Testament does not lose its value in our eyes when we are introduced to the New Testament, and the New Testament is only enhanced when we read the Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. In considering the additional scripture accepted by Latter-day Saints, we might ask: Were those early Christians who for decades had access only to the primitive Gospel of Mark (generally considered the first of the New Testament Gospels to be written)—were they offended to receive the more detailed accounts set forth later by Matthew and Luke, to say nothing of the unprecedented passages and revelatory emphasis offered later yet by John? Surely they must have rejoiced that ever more convincing evidence of the divinity of Christ kept coming. And so do we rejoice.

38 comments:

Tracy Keeney said...

I LOVED this, Jeff. This whole subject is one of my absolute favorite doctrines of the gospel. Knowing that my Father in Heaven STILL speaks to a prophet and STILL leads His children NOT just through books written almost 2,000 years ago, is so essential and beautiful to me.
I honestly can't even imagine believing in a God who would say "Sorry, but I'm not speaking to you anymore. You want to know me? Get the book." That doesn't sound much like a Father/daughter relationship to me.

Anonymous said...

Right. Kind of like an up-to-date blog versus a static Web page from years ago. It's nice to have something that stays up to date.

marcus said...

One of the questions that I've long had, given out belief in continuing revelation, why haven't there been any new books added to the official canon in so long? Joseph Smith received 130+ revelations that are canonized scripture. Over the next 170 years we've only had a handful of teachings that are now part of the official canon. I imagine the proclamation on the family might actually get incorporated into a future edition of the LDS scriptures, but that's still a scant number compared with how prolific Joseph Smith was. I know that the Prophets still receive revelation for the church, and that church publications are part of the officially recognized doctrine, but why have there been so few revelations added to the scriptures since Joseph Smith's death?

Joel Honea said...

Elder Maxwell used to talk about "doctrinal" versus "tactical" revelation, saying that the doctrines of salvation have all been revealed. That's not to say that God has revealed everything he wants us to know, just that what is necessary for our salvation has been revealed. And even that is of little good without living oracles who hold the necessary priesthood keys. So revealed doctrine + living prophets is vital.

So most of what the Church gets today is not doctrinal, but tactical in nature. I think of the counsel to store a year's supply of food, or have a 72-hour kit, or hold weekly home evening, or the Perpetual Education Fund, staying away from pornography and drugs, using technology to accomplish the Lord's purposes, and such things that help us be temporally and spiritually strong in the times in which we live.

And church publications are not considered doctrine. They are tools to assist us in teaching doctrine from the revelations.

Anonymous said...

But the problem is, if there is continuing revelation why HF let apostles make those terrible decisions about the legitimacy of the Kinderhook plates and the Hoffman forgeries. And why Elder McConkie wrote the first edition of "Mormon Doctrine" so injudiciously -- surely he had prayed about it?

Personally, I hope there is still revelation because I hope there will one day be revelation about people with gay sexual natures. The information about it being congenital is mounting and it hurts my heart for otherwise decent young people to be marked to the point of depression, apostacy, family breeches and even suicide.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
10:00 PM, May 21, 2008

"But the problem is, if there is continuing revelation why HF let apostles make those terrible decisions about the legitimacy of the Kinderhook plates and the Hoffman forgeries. And why Elder McConkie wrote the first edition of "Mormon Doctrine" so injudiciously -- surely he had prayed about it? "


We need to remember that the prophets and apostles are human. The rule is follow the 12 and if they all agree, then right or wrong they will be held accountable if they lead us wrong. I don't think the Kinderhook plates or Hoffman forgeries were ever official just of great interest. You bring them up show how far off people get from the gospel. Again I think Elder McConkie went ahead of the 12 without the 12's approval. You may need to do some detailed research but none of these are part of the Standard Works or doctrine. I have personally felt the spirit on matters that the church has not declared doctrine but this is for my personal knowledge and witness and even these experiences does not give me the right to use such things to talk about it to others, follow it, promote it, or try to teach others about it. Remember we all make mistakes and this is why it is necessary to follow the 12. If the prophet took off on his own on some doctrine and the 12 did not agree then follow the twelve.


"Personally, I hope there is still revelation because I hope there will one day be revelation about people with gay sexual natures. The information about it being congenital is mounting and it hurts my heart for otherwise decent young people to be marked to the point of depression, apostasy, family breeches and even suicide."

Be careful, it sounds like you are hoping they will obtain a revelation to confirm what you want them to confirm even if science states something as fact. As it relates to congenital, I am not sure what this has to do with the Lord confirming this or saying that any of our actions are ok if they are against the commandments or scriptures or the 12. An example, it is my genetic code to commit adultery and have had the chance to do so many times. I have wanted to do many things before I was married but because I agreed to keep the commandments of God I took control of my genetic code and refused to live like that. I do not cheat because it is a commandment not to and I have made an agreement to my wife that I will not hurt her or my family that way. It is in my genetic code to want to lie, cheat, and steal but I have agreed with God and the law not to do these things. There are many times in life when my genetic code tells me to do permant bodily harm to others but because of the laws of man and God I keep my genetic code in check. And as far as "depression, apostasy, family breeches and even suicide" we can not use anything as excuses to break the commandments. I have worked with and have friends that are gay but nothing gives us the justification to break the commandments even if we are weak and feel it is in our DNA to do so. The spirit is strong but the flesh is weak.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, I forgot to identify myself when I said that a strategic lack of revelation or discernment had created awkward situations and that there was real and compelling need for some now in respect to homosexuality.

I'm that "anonymous".

To the other anonymous, we've heard all the stuff about what is and what is not revelation. That's different than a clear and problematic lack of it and need for it.

And I have no intention of being told to sit down and be quiet about the trauma that the church's exclusionary position on homosexuality causes. Families are torn apart by it. Decent people are forced into living hells -- both the people who are gay and the people they marry in an effort to deny it.

The church once had clear positions in opposition to the Catholic church and Blacks. It has found ways to circumvent, relax, forget or officially reverse them. It will come to a realistic and just and compassionate conclusion. Just like it has in the past. Then it will not be something I have to be "careful" about or sit down and shut up about.

We're just waiting on the revelation. ...and hoping there aren't too many suicides, broken families and people turning their backs on the church or feeling that the church has turned it's back on them before it happens.

anonymous alice

Anonymous said...

Anon,
While you're at it, maybe you can get a revelation saying it's okay to do cocaine. It's all natural from the leaf. Maybe you'll get a revelation saying that it's cool to go to other countries and murder innocent people in the name of being a Patriot. Even better, maybe God will reveal that he is in fact an alien with superior knowledge and powers and only the faithful will make it to his mothership. I find that your church sticks to it's guns pretty seriously when it comes to morality and chastity. I wouldn't say that you should shut up about it, but you might be waiting for a long time, like until the Second Coming for the okay for same gender dating.

jayleenb said...

Hey Jeff! I don't know where else to post this, but knew you'd want to know:

"A state appellate court has ruled that child welfare officials had no right to seize more than 400 children living at a polygamist sect's ranch.

The Third Court of Appeals in Austin ruled that the grounds for removing the children were "legally and factually insufficient" under Texas law. They did not immediately order the return of the children."

jayleenb said...

As to this topic, that was one thing that made me cry... to know that indeed HF had not stopped speaking to us. Wandering in the other churches all those years, I often wondered why He had ceased to speak to us. It didn't make any sense to me, especially as the years wore on and I saw so many teachings from the same scriptures.

I wondered why He would leave it to us to have to figure out which of thousands of voices was telling us the truth.

When I came to know the BoM was true by the testimony of the Holy Ghost, my heart cried out for joy.

I was thrilled to have more of God's words and like Tracy, to know He has given us a Prophet to lead and guide us and speak His words to us in our day.

Ryan said...

to anon@10:37

I'm not quite sure how you make the jump from "practicing homosexuality is a sin" to "those who are not prepared for marriage must marry anyway and be miserable."

Also, AFAICT that whole "Catholic Church is of the devil" thing was never official church doctrine. Moving away from that notion was more or less a matter of FARMS types studying the history and realizing the data didn't fit the hypothesis -- no "official proclamation" necessary.

This particular piece of the law of chastity, on the other hand, has been canonized for at least 3300 years.

As for genetics, I'm going to have to agree with the "other" anon.

"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord." -- Mosiah 3:19

I find that society continually pushes for everyone to yield to their impulses (especially if someone stands to make money as a result), and science makes as good a tool as any to achieve that end***. Meanwhile the gospel has always taught people to yield to the Spirit instead and be strong.


*** I guarantee that the news sources which trumpet studies showing drugs, immorality etc. are good (or at least not too harmful) are either silent or disparaging whenever studies show the opposite.

erelis said...

Great post, very curious comment thread.

Anonymous said...

In 1958 Bruce McConkie wrote his infamous statement that "Negroes in this life are denied the priesthood; under no circumstances can they hold this delegation of authority from the Almighty." (my italics) On Sept. 29, 1978 I'm sure someone was quoting him and his theory on valiance. And yet Elder McConkie lived to be part of the historic change of the Priesthood Declaration.

I understand that the unfortunate characterization of the Catholic church is not exactly doctrinal. But if you're old enough and you had the opportunity, it could not have been more clear. ...until it changed.

As for "those who are not prepared for marriage must marry anyway and be miserable" (which, curiously, I did not say so I'm mystified by your use of quotation marks) I wonder if you're naive or choose to over simplify. The cultural pressure to fit in and marry is overwhelming. Gay Mormons are not immune to it. Meanwhile, there is only beginning to be willingness to face the reality of homosexuality in a candid fashion. Out of sheer pressure to conform, if not doctrine and trust that they can be delivered if they're devout enough, gay men and women marry. And they marry often unsuspecting straight partners and have children in an effort to be what is expected of them.

If you are fortunate not to know someone whose life was turned into upheaval because they or a spouse or a parent couldn't continue living something that, to them, was a lie then you are a fortunate person and I envy you. It is a tragic thing to behold even if the people involved are able to eventually work things through. But there are hundreds of families who have lost and will lose members in spirit if not in fact from such fallout.

Estimates are that there are hundreds of thousands of gay Mormons. So it will continue to happen and I suspect UT will continue to have one of the highest rates of suicide for young men in the nation until a measure of reality or revelation intervenes to free those people or provide them with more realistic alternatives than reparative therapy.

anonymous alice

Anonymous said...

"We're just waiting on the revelation. ..."

This is because you think revelation is a bunch of old guys voting on something.




"Estimates are that there are hundreds of thousands of gay Mormons."

And what about all those that have coverted to being straight?

Anonymous said...

"The cultural pressure to fit in and marry is overwhelming. Gay Mormons are not immune to it."

As a convert I have been single most of my 30 years in the church, I can leave, get married or live as a single LDS. I agree there are cultural pressures but I am going to obey the laws of chasity of God weather I am gay, straight, or bi-sexual.

Anonymous said...

"I hope there is still revelation because I hope there will one day be revelation about people with gay sexual natures."

After joining the church over 30 years ago I am shocked how many people want to recreat the church in their image.

Anonymous said...

"I hope there is still revelation because I hope there will one day be revelation about people with gay sexual natures."

After joining the church over 30 years ago I am shocked how many people want to recreat the church in their image.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Alice,

"So it will continue to happen and I suspect UT will continue to have one of the highest rates of suicide for young men in the nation until a measure of reality or revelation intervenes to free those people or provide them with more realistic alternatives than reparative therapy."

Sounds like you have done an in depth analysis to come to such a conclusion. Care to post how you came to such a conclusion?

Thanks,
Anonymous Steve

Anonymous said...

There is actually a very interesting paper on the subject. Here is the opening paragraph:

In 1996, suicide was the third leading cause of death for US males aged 15–24 years and the fourth leading cause of death for US males aged 25–44 (1).In Utah, for 1991–1995, suicide was the second leading cause of death for males aged 15–24 years and the leading cause of death for males aged 25–44 (2). For more than a decade, suicide rates in Utah for young males aged 15–34 years have been substantially higher than national suicide rates (3, 4). Although a number of risk factors for suicide have been suggested, a low level of religious commitment or religiosity is a potential risk factor that merits further study.

Now, this does NOT specify that any of these youth were gay but then it doesn't specify why their religiosity or participation had waned either. It does specifically address how the LDS enters into this being the predominant religion of UT.

You can read it all here: http://aje.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/reprint/155/5/413.pdf

Additional research is needed to clarify much of this and perhaps, since 2002, more has been done. Meanwhile, people are in turmoil over this and more alienation is NOT what is called for until research or revelation make a clearer path evident.

anonymous alice

Anonymous said...

Steve-

Your challenge made me go looking for hard info. This site ( http://health.utah.gov/vipp/pdf/suicide_2006.pdf ) prepared by the UT Dept. of Health has in interesting chart that indicates that the 10 states with the highest incidence of suicide are (in order of frequency):
Nevada (let's assume desperation over gambling has something to do with this one),
Wyoming
Alaska
New Mexico
Montana
Arizona
Colorado
Utah
Idaho
Oregon

Look at the correspondence with states with the highest LDS populations:
Utah
Idaho
Wyoming
Nevada
Arizona
Montana
Hawaii
Oregon
Washington
Alaska

Something is terribly wrong in the state of Denmark and it's time for some intervention. I didn't even know this until your inquiry made me look for hard information. I had been speaking from observation in my own environment and general reading and perceptions. Now I'm more adamant than ever that wisdom is needed!

anonymous alice

trevor said...

anonymous alice,

fortunately, opinion and church doctrine are very very VERY different. mcconkie could've said a lot a things (and he did) the same with joseph fielding smith or any other general authority from the church. that does not change the fact that it was never canonized as an official declaration. so that's that with the whole african american and catholic church thing.

as for the homosexuality issue, it has been stated pretty clearly in the past comments. i'm heterosexual, and if i have the temptation to break the law of chastity, well that's my choice, isn't it? if i were gay, and i had the temptation to break the law of chastity, it's STILL MY CHOICE. people need to stop whining so much about cultural norms and take responsibility for their actions. if the suicide rate of gay mormons in UT is high, they obviously haven't tried very hard to deal with their problem correctly. at the risk of sounding terribly cruel, nephi responded perfectly "...the guilty taketh the truth to be hard, for it cutteth them to the very center." we cannot justify sins no matter what the light is that we are shining on the issue.

erelis said...

Look at the correspondence with states with the highest LDS populations:
Utah
Idaho
Wyoming
Nevada
Arizona
Montana
Hawaii
Oregon
Washington
Alaska


I'm calling for citations to references on that one. More Mormons in Alaska and Hawaii than in California?

While an all-out rebuttal to your inference that there's a connection between depression, suicice rates and Mormonism in the states you list is impossible in this limited space, you should bear in mind the simple maxim of social scientists that correlation is not causation. A proper study of the effects of Mormonism on suicide and depression rates would study Mormonism inside and outside the states you list. Your inference completely ignores the obvious fact that in all of the states that you list, Mormons are hardly a majority, and therefore should have little to no impact on the overall suicide/depression rates.

Anonymous said...

" i'm heterosexual, and if i have the temptation to break the law of chastity, well that's my choice, isn't it? if i were gay, and i had the temptation to break the law of chastity, it's STILL MY CHOICE. "

trevor-

The very obvious difference is that you have the opportunity to express the sexual nature you were born with within the covenant of marriage and maintain your purity.

What option does a gay Mormon have for the 40 years between, say 16 and 56? That's a lot of cold showers, fasting and praying and a lot of years to go through life without companionship.

anonymous alice

JBod said...

Nevada
Wyoming
Alaska
New Mexico
Montana
Arizona
Colorado
Utah
Idaho
Oregon


I agree with erelis - correlation is not causation. As an example, notice that these states are all in the western United States. Should I then assume that living in the west increases my chances of wanting to kill myself?

Anonymous said...

Has it ever been a good idea to tell God what He should reveal?

Anonymous said...

I agree that correlation is not causation but it certainly reveals fruitful material for investigation. And I hope there will be because the need for understanding and effective intervention is great.

Interestingly, while there is the greatest risk of suicide in Western states, CA with it's freewheeling contemporary culture ranks #42 and WA, the only other Western State is #21 compared with the remaining Western States which are all in the top 10.

It doesn't take much investigation, tho, to see that there is an area of tremendous spiritual, emotional, domestic and even physical jeopardy for which I pray (not order) revelation. While a vain attempt to demand it might be impotent, a refusal to recognize what's going on or a callousness to the individuals impacted is equally useless and, I suggest, more counterproductive.

erelis- The links to both of those sources are in the original posts.

anonymous alice

georgia said...

No where in the scriptures does it say that the canon is now closed. People can review Revelations and say that in there we have a verse that says that nothing should be added and nothing taken away. But I think that all christian denominations now feel that this just refers to Revelations.

The HF still speaks to us and we can have an open canon. The question can then evolve into which written works should be allowed in.

It is interesting that after JS very few additional writings have been included.

As a person investigating the church I can look at the Book of Abraham and Moses and ask is this fake or is this truth.

I find that denominations of christian faith either subtract or add to the bible.

Example being that baptists seem to ignore certain verses in the bible while accepting others. While other denominations like LDS takes the bible and adds on (BofM, Pearl of Great Price)

The truth must be found in what is the current canon. That in my opinion can only come through prayer.

jayleenb said...

Anon Alice - I have been single and chaste for YEARS. It's not that difficult! You focus your life towards different things. Sex is not the be all, end all of existence. People can direct their lives to many good works.

Sure, I'd like to be married some day, but if I'm not, going without sex is simply no big deal.

Here is what the Church has released to the Media regarding its stance on Same-Gender Attraction.

http://newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=27f71f1dd189f010VgnVCM100000176f620aRCRD&vgnextchannel=726511154963d010VgnVCM1000004e94610aRCRD&vgnextfmt=tab1

jayleenb said...

That link didn't work... I guess it's too long.

Put these two together:

http://newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=27f71f1dd189f010VgnVCM100000176f620aRC

RD&vgnextchannel=726511154963d010VgnVCM1000004e94610aRCRD&vgnextfmt=tab1

jayleenb said...

ARGH. lol

After the 100000 should be:

4e94610aRCRD&vgnextfmt=tab1

Anonymous said...

Now I'm more adamant than ever that wisdom is needed!

anonymous alice



"Has it ever been a good idea to tell God what He should reveal?"


That is because alice thinks she should run the church with science not G-d.

Anonymous said...

What on earth makes you think science is different than God? Science is observation of what is around us -- or the works of HF. We may have incomplete or erroneous understanding of them but to understand His creation is another attempt to understand Him.

Who knows how revelation comes to the GAs? Yes, I realize they must pray on things and be open to the Holy Spirit but do you know how the spirit may speak to them? Why do you exclude external events and challenges? How can you be sure that the pressures of the 70s or the late 1800s weren't part of the voice of the Holy Spirit when the revelation came about extending the priesthood or setting aside polygamy? They certainly corresponded with societal pressures.

But I'm done here. My point was that revelation seems to be sorely needed. I have no doubt in my heart it will come. I am ready for it. I hope on the day after it comes all will be ready to open their hearts to their own family members and children.

Anonymous said...

1But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. 3The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group 4and said to Jesus, "Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?" 6They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. 7When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her." 8Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground.

9At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. 10Jesus straightened up and asked her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?"

11"No one, sir," she said.
"Then neither do I condemn you," Jesus declared. "Go now and leave your life of sin."

I always loved this story but most people only talk about not casting stones but they miss the very last statement "leave your life of sin."
Other places we find out what this very same God thinks of and will do to those that will not repent of gay life style. He has compassion but to Christ sin is sin. I am supprised God still gives revelation when even here the message is clear and people like Alice wants more as long as it supports her version of the Gospel.

Anonymous said...

"What on earth makes you think science is different than God?"

Many commandments of God go against science other wise God would just say follow your science. But God says follow him because your science will change.

Anonymous said...

"but do you know how the spirit may speak to them (GA's)?"

Yes I do have some idea how they obtain revelation. Do you? If you did I dought you would be asking the question.

Anonymous said...

"But I'm done here. My point was that revelation seems to be sorely needed. I have no doubt in my heart it will come. I am ready for it. I hope on the day after it comes all will be ready to open their hearts to their own family members and children."

It all ready has but you like many have missed it.


Condem the sin and love the sinner.
"Go thy way and sin no more."

erelis said...

I agree that correlation is not causation but it certainly reveals fruitful material for investigation. And I hope there will be because the need for understanding and effective intervention is great.

Interestingly, while there is the greatest risk of suicide in Western states, CA with it's freewheeling contemporary culture ranks #42 and WA, the only other Western State is #21 compared with the remaining Western States which are all in the top 10.


The high rates of depression actually center on the inter-mountain West, so California and Washington shouldn't be lumped in your list to begin with. This is a recognized regional phenomenon which psychologists have been trying to understand.

I think that the point should be clear -- Utah is consistent with neighboring states in the region, all of which have minority populations of Mormons. Your inference that somehow Mormonism is responsible for a regional psychological phenomenon has absolutely no evidence beyond the meaningless correlation data you've supplied.

Of course, the large LDS population in CA has nothing to do with its rank at #42, does it? I haven't heard of high depression/suicide rates in Texas, northern Virginia and large portions of the Northeast where there are sizeable LDS populations. Why do you insist that there's a relationship between suicide and the LDS faith in some states, but ignore states that indicate contrary data?

It doesn't take much investigation, tho, to see that there is an area of tremendous spiritual, emotional, domestic and even physical jeopardy for which I pray (not order) revelation. While a vain attempt to demand it might be impotent, a refusal to recognize what's going on or a callousness to the individuals impacted is equally useless and, I suggest, more counterproductive.


If you're insistent on establishing a relationship between Mormonism and psychological disorders, you might want to start with something that has actually studied the precise issue at hand instead of grasping feebly at loose statistical data -- which in fact supports the opposite view:

http://www.adherents.com/largecom/lds_LowSuicideRate.html

I'm not trying to be callous towards those with recognized psychological issues. But I strenuously object to your attempt to wield an argument from weak inference as a cudgel against the Mormon faith.

Anonymous said...

"I'm not trying to be callous towards those with recognized psychological issues. But I strenuously object to your attempt to wield an argument from weak inference as a cudgel against the Mormon faith."

Don't be to upset, they have been doing this for over 200 years. Unless someone like you knows better and can help show the other or true side then the arm chair experts just throw out what ever they find on the internet.