An Introduction — Getting Attitudes Together
"Where there is no vision, the people perish:
but he that keepeth the law,
happy is he."
This great nation, the United States of America, is unlike any nation that has existed since the dawn of man. Not only the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints but many other Christian churches and people believe it was instituted by divine wisdom and the hand of a loving God. It is not only the doctrine of this, the "Mormon" Church, but that of many other people, that God established its inspired Constitution. It is also the belief of many that America’s forefathers wisely followed His guidelines — they having been "raised up unto this very purpose." (D&C 101:80.) They established the noblest government with the greatest amount of freedom any nation or people have ever known.
It is unfortunate, however, that many of Americans are ignorant of the real purpose of the founding of our nation and the contents of our sacred document, the Constitution of the United States. This is also even very true for some Latter-day Saints.
In a High Priests group meeting one Sunday the instructor of the class asked its members how many had read the Constitution of the United States. Out of about 25 or 30 men, only three raised their hands. We have been told by our Prophet Ezra Taft Benson to ". . . learn the principles of the Constitution in the tradition of the Founding Fathers." (The Ensign, November, 1987, p. 7.) It is sobering to ask ourselves, "Have we followed his counsel?"
We Have Heroes
In the past, our Founding Fathers have been the beacons by which our governmental "ship of State" has been steered. Their thoughts and ideals have been the spirit behind critical decision making. Those wise and noble men have influenced not only our great country, but other nations as well. Today, however, the ideals and values of those inspired founders are being more and more disregarded.
As we strive for meaning and direction in our lives during these trying times, we often look to heroes for stability, like our forefathers have been. In doing so we develop modern day heroes to rally around. These heroes can be people we trust, such as the President of the U.S., a Church official, some ethnic leader, renowned scientist, etc.
Heroes are not always people. They can also be heroic causes we believe in, like: the Iraq-Kuwait/Middle-East conflict; standing up for, or against, abortion or homosexuality; or things like saving the whales or the White Spotted Owl. Such heroic efforts are important for some of us. But what happens when someone comes along and tries to tell us that our modern day hero, or cause, is something less than we suppose? Would we have a tendency to take offense? As some people know, the truth can hurt. And offense can come to many because of truth.
Now what is the point of all of this one might be asking. The point that we will be making in this book is the fact that many of our popular government leaders and pet programs may not be all they are presented to be. And by so discovering this, the reader may take offense.
We also have a tendency to protect our belief systems when we do become offended. At the risk of playing with words we might say, "To believe something or not to believe something, that is the question." — to believe in God or not to believe in God; to believe in freedom for all or not too believe it is for all; to believe there is a threat to the Constitution or not to believe such a threat exists; to believe in conspiracies or not to believe in these satanic secret combinations; to get involved in issues or not to get so involved. These are some of the critical questions we will be addressing in this book; and these issues play a part in our belief system in one way or another.
Because they are part of our belief system, we must know where we stand in regard to them; and the best way to do that is to confront that belief system with information. Then, and only then, can we make wise and appropriate choices for the good of our temporal existence and eternal salvation. Heroes are not always what they seem to be on the surface. But when they are attacked, our belief system is challenged and we take offense.
When the prophet Alma was sorrowing because of the wickedness of his people, he wrote: "they began to be offended because of the strictness of the word." (Alma 35:15.) Speaking of the last days, the Lord said, "And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another." (Matt. 24:10; JS-Matt. 8.) And it tells us in the book of Matthew: "when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended." (Matt. 13:21.) We therefore may find it hard to accept truth. "Thou hast declared unto us hard things, more than we are able to bear," said the brothers of Nephi. And Nephi responded: "Wherefore, the guilty taketh the truth to be hard, for it cutteth them to the very center."(1 Ne. 16:1-2.)
Depending on the situation and our nature at the time, we can become defensive of our own position, and of the person or principle we support — becoming hurt and angry, and closing our eyes, ears, minds and hearts.
However, we can also be a believing person if we choose to be. Believing with the spirit of faith, when truth is recognized, is not gullibility. For those with the spirit of meekness, this statement from the Lord can add strength: "And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me." (Matt. 11:6.) Blessings can come to us when we are not offended in the Savior’s life, His works, His teachings or commandments.
A Time for Truth
Truth can be a powerful force for good when it is accepted in faith. Wouldn’t it have been a tragedy if our forefathers had not believed what they read and were told by those who took the time to learn the facts? If the reader is afraid that his belief system will be upset because of what follows in this book, then perhaps he or she ought not to continue reading. Because if they do, they will be presented information, that if taken in a serious manner, could change this country around from the deadly direction in which it is headed.
True information received, contrary to our belief system, can be very uncomfortable, especially when it involves our elected government officials. Some may say, "It is un-American and disloyal to make such claims as there being a secret combination," — or as we might call it today, a conspiracy. Others may say, "My free agency isn’t threatened; we should support our President and elected officials, and have more faith in their programs. Don’t try and make me lose faith in our government leaders and their policies. Besides, no one is perfect anyway."
The Book of Mormon tells us of the wicked King Noah. Should he not have been called to repentance? What was his fate and that of those who supported him? Can we not learn from such stories? There are those who, like King Noah, without studying the facts or listening to warnings, will continue in their wicked ways supporting that which is evil.
Most of us know of the proverbial "handwriting on the wall" syndrome, where we have a tendency to ignore warning signs when things seem to be going well. President J. Reuben Clark, a past member of the First Presidency, said, "There always comes a time when unpleasant truths must be retold, even though the retelling disturbs the ease and quiet of a luxurious error. Today seems to be such a time. On such occasions, the criticism, slander, misrepresentation that one gets, are of no consequence." (CR, April 1963, p. 111.)
When confronted with such a problem in our lives, perhaps we can look, listen and investigate, in order to learn the truth for ourselves rather than becoming offended or defensive.
It is a fact that good people and causes are slandered by prejudice, bias and sometimes designing individuals. However, it is also true that there are those out there that need to be exposed for what they are. We, as God’s children, have been commanded to learn truth, act upon that truth and to take that truth to others.
An oft-quoted scripture related to this subject is John 8:32: "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Truth is all-powerful. Truth not only helps us understand our relationship with God, it can also make us free from bondage, but only as we choose to act. However, many of us do not discern truth for what it is and therefore cannot act upon it.
The Danger of Pride
Some possess such pride, gross apathy, and chosen ignorance that they remain unmoved by evil events and the seriousness of those circumstance. Many have heard someone say something like: "I know enough of that person not to believe what he says?" Or perhaps something like: "I’ve heard about that and I just can’t believe such a fantastic story?" And so they proceed, through prejudice, defending their stance, continuing to wear their blinders as they are led "carefully" away saying "all is well." The New Testament warns us about such attitudes in the last days:
"Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie." (2 Thes. 2:9-11.)
There are many of the proud and stubborn who will talk against the Church, disbelieve its leaders, and continue on supporting the antichrist and unholy principles. We know the results when Cain, Pharaoh, Laman and Lemuel were warned and they continued in their evil and deceptive ways.
Choosing to disregard warning signs about a deadly disease in our bodies could prove fatal. Choosing to disregard the warning signs of a deadly disease in the world, and in this noble country of ours, could also be very deadly. The secrecy, the people destroyed, the nations ruined, the bondage of humanity, etc., can be so appalling and hideous that many of us do not want to face them. So we turn our faces and stick our heads in the proverbial sand. It is like many people are saying, "Why, we still get a paycheck, Congress is still in session — so the Constitution must still be alive and well, and we are still free to be complacent."
We Have Been Warned
Then, there are others who feel that if secret combinations are so serious, the Prophet would surely say something about it; otherwise, we shouldn’t get involved in such things. Well, the fact is that the prophets have raised a warning voice for over a hundred years, and especially within the past forty years. But, have we been listening and have we had ears to hear their messages? An example can be cited, in reference to just such a warning, from our current Prophet. Did we hear the message which he gave in General Conference, October 1988? Here are his words, once again:
"I testify that wickedness is rapidly expanding in every segment of our society. It is more highly organized, more cleverly disguised, and more powerfully promoted than ever before. Secret combinations lusting for power, gain, and glory are flourishing. A secret combination that seeks to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries is increasing its evil influence and control over America and the entire world." (CR, October, 1988, p. 103.)
As we study that monumental talk, we discover the spirit in which he spoke; for, starting with his third sentence of that talk, he said, "As a special witness of Jesus Christ, and as His humble servant, it is my obligation and privilege, as the Spirit dictates, to bear pure testimony and witness to that which I know to be true. This I will do."
Now, may we ask ourselves, what is a "special witness?" What did he mean, "as the Spirit dictates?" What does it mean to bear "pure testimony?" What does it mean when you "know" something to be true? To those who understand what he said here, it means that he spoke by revelation — not personal opinion, bias, prejudice, or some other personal inclination — but revelation from the Lord.
In this same spirit he said that this wickedness is "more highly organized, more cleverly disguised, and more powerfully promoted than ever before." That means TODAY — more so than EVER BEFORE in history. Does that sound like things are getting better? Are we going to ignore this warning of our Prophet?
We may not hear much more about this subject over the general pulpit as we did in the past due to the sensitive work taking place behind the "Iron Curtain," as it was once called. As we gain a true understanding of the events in Eastern Europe, we will find his words are still very applicable. The wall is down and missionaries are in Russia. Nevertheless, we have been warned and counseled and it behooves us to heed those words. The lack of a warning voice does not mean things are much better, for as we study the contents that are to come, many may still be concerned.
We must consider our relationship to a Prophet’s warning voice. We must remember that the Lord forbid Mormon to "preach unto them" because they had "wilfully rebelled against their God." (Morm.1:16.) A scripture from the Doctrine and Covenants may be of value here: "And all they who receive the oracles of God, let them beware how they hold them lest they are accounted as a light thing, and are brought under condemnation thereby, and stumble and fall when the storms descend, and the winds blow, and the rains descend, and beat upon their house." (D&C 90:5.)
There are those even among Church members, including those in leadership and sensitive positions, who have their own beliefs based on prejudice and bias philosophies. Ezra Taft Benson in, An Enemy Hath Done This, is quoted as saying, ". . . this fight for freedom might never become popular in our day. And if you wait until everybody agrees in this Church, you will be waiting through the second coming of the Lord." (AEHDT, p. 276.)
We know the results when the children of Israel and the Nephites were warned concerning their wickedness and didn’t take heed. Are we not also the children of Israel, descending from the Israelites? Why should we be so arrogant as to think we are more righteous than our forefathers? It is unfortunate that some of us find for ourselves a very comfortable niche in life and feel it hard or inconvenient to change, be it right or wrong.
All Is Not Well in Zion
Satan, the father of lies, establishes these great and secret combinations. Let us ask ourselves: "What is a secret?" It is, as Webster says: "Keeping from knowledge of others, something not revealed, keep private," etc.
And Satan, who is the father of lies, cannot tell the truth and desires to hide his works from others; and to do so he must deceive. If there is a conspiracy, would those responsible tell the truth about it? No, they would not, for a conspiracy, by its nature is a lie. And Satan cannot tell the truth. The scriptures testify to that. As Jesus was talking to the Pharisees, He said,
So we see here that Satan is incapable of telling the truth, and he teaches his followers here on this earth to also lie. It is his nature to deceive, for the truth is not in him. He must, and does, deceive. And so do his disciples.
If the devil is the author of secret combinations, or conspiracies, then he surely wouldn’t want anyone to know they exist. The whole premise of a conspiracy is that it is secret; and if he, the devil allowed all to know one existed, then it would destroy the premise of a conspiracy and people would not be deceived.
Part of this deep and dark craftiness is to convince the deceived that everything is okay; or, that it is so bad, why try fighting it. Some common attitudes among us are: "People only make mountains out of molehills, so why get excited about something we cannot do anything about anyway?" And, "Just mind your own business, keep the commandments, and God will handle the rest." However, the scriptures warn us of this type of logic and give us these words:
"And others will he pacify, and lull them away into carnal security, that they will say: All is well in Zion; yea, Zion prospereth, all is well — and thus the devil cheateth their souls, and leadeth them away carefully down to hell. And behold, others he flattereth away, and telleth them there is no hell; and he saith unto them: I am no devil, for there is none — and thus he whispereth in their ears, until he grasps them with his awful chains, from whence there is no deliverance." (2 Ne. 28:21-22.)
Consequently, Latter-day Saints, along with most Americans, are misled by those calling good evil and evil good; for the scriptures say, "if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect."
Satan is so diabolically clever that he influences man to discredit that which is good, especially when it comes to unraveling the mysteries of secret combinations.
Hollywood is no exception. Movies and television have been one of the biggest tools in this deception. Movies like "Red Dawn," about a communist invasion of the U.S. by foreign troops coming in from the South, is one example. Another one is: "They Live," about aliens from some other planet that take over the world appearing as humans which you can only detect by wearing special sunglasses. And of course there are many others seemingly far-fetched movies that could be mentioned.
By filling the heads of the public with fantastic stories it leads one to disbelieve the truth when a REAL fantastic story appears. So now when someone uncovers a secret plot in some business or government they are accused of witch hunting, watching too much TV, or just plain being gullible. But, in reality, this is just the type of attitude these conspirators want us to take towards the true and alert patriots — to call them crazy and say to them, "You go to too many movies. That’s only Hollywood make-believe, not real life. All is well in Happy Valley, USA (Zion)."
There Is No Excuse
Among much of his wise counsel and warnings, Ezra Taft Benson has also said, "There is no excuse that can compensate for the loss of liberty." (AEHDT, p. 314.)
And the Prophet Hosea tells us, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: Because thou hast rejected knowledge . . . seeing thou hast forgotten the law of God." (Hosea 4:6.)
Let us not remain uninformed and ignorant of our condition but seek to find knowledge to enlighten our path. The Apostle Paul declares to the Corinthians, "Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices." (2 Cor. 2:11.)
By recognizing that there is an enemy — knowing what form he takes, what his purpose is and how to protect ourselves from his attacks — can arm us with knowledge, which is power. Knowledge is the first step in fighting the evil one. But, we must be aware that an insight into a problem is not a solution without a plan of action to rid ourselves of the problem. As we pursue this course of thought in this book we must remember that involvement is paramount to the security of our liberties — knowledge, alone, will not suffice.
No matter how convincing an argument might be there will always be those who will not believe it, or will not accept it if they did believe it. The proud will only scoff at it, and unwittingly perhaps, give support to those devilish plans of the adversary. We must remember that Laman and Lemuel received personal angelic revelation but still continued to choose wickedness. (1 Ne. 3:29-31.)
The honest-in-heart will be meek and teachable enough to understand the message presented herein and truly desire to see a positive change. They will not live in gross apathy and chosen ignorance but will prayerfully ask for God’s intervention and, at the same time, will extend themselves into this eternal conflict. They will desire to follow the admonition of the Lord when He spoke to Captain Moroni through Pahoran, head of the Nephite government:
"We would subject ourselves to the yoke of bondage if it were requisite with the justice of God, or if he should command us so to do. But behold he doth not command us that we shall subject ourselves to our enemies, but that we should put our trust in him, and he will deliver us. Therefore, my beloved brother, Moroni, let us resist evil, and whatsoever evil we cannot resist with our words, yea, such as rebellions and dissensions, let us resist them with our swords, that we may retain our freedom, that we may rejoice in the great privilege of our church, and in the cause of our Redeemer and our God. Therefore . . . the Spirit of God . . . is also the spirit of freedom. See that ye . . . fear not, for God will deliver . . . yea, and all those who stand fast in that liberty wherewith God hath made them free." (Alma 61:12-15, 21.)
They, the meek, will understand this Spirit of God, or the spirit of freedom. This spirit upholds the principle of agency and a free environment to exercise that agency. They will also understand what the Lord meant when He spoke in the Doctrine and Covenants:
"And I give unto you a commandment that you shall teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom. Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand; Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms — That ye may be prepared in all things. . . . Behold, I sent you out to testify and warn the people, and it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor." (D&C 88:77-81.)
We are not only commanded to acquire and share this knowledge of various kinds; we are also admonished to be in a condition to receive and understand it. We certainly cannot teach others that which we do not comprehend. Therefore, we read again from the Doctrine and Covenants: "Let him that is ignorant learn wisdom by humbling himself and calling upon the Lord his God, that his eyes may be opened that he may see, and his ears opened that he may hear; For my Spirit is sent forth into the world to enlighten the humble and contrite, and to the condemnation of the ungodly." (D&C 136:32-33.)
President Benson Testifies
Now, we have received similar counsel. In that same talk which he gave in October conference of 1988, where he spoke as a "Witness," as the "Spirit dictates," and with "pure testimony," President Benson also counseled us as follows:
"I testify that it is time for every man to set in order his own house both temporally and spiritually. . . . It is time for us, as members of the Church, to walk in all the ways of the Lord, to use our influence to make popular that which is sound and to make unpopular that which is unsound. We have the scriptures, the prophets, and the gift of the Holy Ghost. Now we need eyes that will see, ears that will hear, and hearts that will hearken to God’s direction." (CR, October, 1988, p. 103-10.)
Have we followed his counsel? Have we been getting our lives in order? And, have we been using our influence in making "popular that which is sound and to make unpopular that which is unsound?" Do we have eyes to see, ears that hear, and hearts that hearken? Have we done, as the scriptures have told us to do: "testify and warn the people," for "it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor."
As we continue reading on, we will discover the Lord’s will in regard to man’s government structure, its operations, and our free agency in relationship to that government. We will also learn what He, the Lord, expects of all of us, so that we might not only live free in this life, but experience eternal life in the life to come.