Dealing with Korihor

This post is for an LDS audience, though all are welcome to read it. This is a personal view of some of the doctrines of the LDS church and as such should be viewed solely as my opinion.

Members of the LDS church view the Book of Mormon as a second witness of Jesus Christ and a guide to living a Christ-like life. This is true, but it is more than that. Members of the church believe the Book of Mormon was written for our day, not only to bring the world this witness of Christ, but also to use as a guide in combating the errors of the day.

President Ezra Taft Benson said:

“Not only should we know what history and faith-promoting stories it contains, but we should understand its teachings. If we really do our homework and approached the Book of Mormon doctrinally, we can expose the errors and find the truths to combat many of the current false theories and philosophies of men. I have noted within the Church a difference in discernment, insight, conviction, and spirit between those who know and love the Book of Mormon and those who do not. That book is a great sifter.” (“Jesus Christ-Gifts and Expectations,” Christmas Devotional, Salt Lake City, Utah, 7 December 1986.)

Unfortunately, for over 150 years, the church has stood under condemnation (D&C 84:54-57) precisely because the members of the church refuse to use the book as it was intended by the Lord to be used. Are we ready to escape that condemnation yet?

President Benson also stated:

We have not been using the Book of Mormon as we should. Our homes are not as strong unless we are using it to bring our children to Christ. Our families may be corrupted by worldly trends and teachings unless we know how to use the book to expose and combat the falsehoods in socialism, organic evolution, rationalism, humanism, and so forth… And our nation will continue to degenerate unless we read and heed the words of the God of this land, Jesus Christ, and quit building up and upholding the secret combinations which the Book of Mormon tells us proved the downfall of both previous American civilizations. (A Witness and a Warning, p. 6.)

The Book of Mormon exposes several types of characters specifically as a warning to those in the last days. We are to use that information to expose those who would overthrow our religious and political freedoms.

Some members of the church focus on living the faith, hope, and charity of Christ, and forget the other aspect of Christ in cleansing the temple, driving out the moneychangers, and exposing the Pharisees. In becoming like Christ, we have a responsibility to muster the courage to speak out and perform similar duties within our own sphere of stewardship.

I would like to discuss the story of one of these characters, namely Korihor, a man identified as an Anti-Christ and humanist. There are numerous questions that could be asked to help us understand the story and why it was included in the Book of Mormon.

Was it simply to share a story that the prophet has power to address problems with false doctrine being taught in the world, or is there a message for all members of the church? What knowledge can we gain from this story and what are we to do with that knowledge? If Korihor himself were here today, what would he look like? What would he teach? Would you allow your children to be taught by him? Would you allow them to be taught by him even a little? Would he be a danger to our liberty? Would he be a danger to our families? Would he be a danger to our faith? How subtle a message would he espouse to make himself look harmless?

The story starts in Alma 30 with the Nephites just finishing a battle with the Lamanites and Amlicites. After the people had buried the dead and mourned for them, the account says the people were “strict in observing the ordinances of God” (vs. 3) and there was “continual peace” in the land (vs. 5). These were good people trying to live good obedient lives, much like the people in our community. However, within another year, a man came into Zarahemla and the account says “he was Anti-Christ, for he began to preach unto the people against the prophecies which had been spoken by the prophets, concerning the coming of Christ.” (vs. 6)

By this verse we see that an Anti-Christ is simply anyone who teaches that Christ will not come. It is someone who is an atheist, and more specifically, one who is vocal in teaching such false doctrine. Korihor was not a psychotic murderer or petty thief or he would have been put in prison. He was a learned individual who desired to promote his belief that there is no Christ.

The Book of Mormon warns us that if we want to remain a free people we must serve the God of this land which is Jesus Christ.

Ether 2:12 “Behold, this is a choice land, and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall be free from bondage, and from captivity, and from all other nations under heaven, if they will but serve the God of the land, who is Jesus Christ, who hath been manifested by the things which we have written.”

The corollary is that if we fail to serve Jesus Christ, we will fall into bondage. Is there a danger in ignoring the Korihor story? Personally? As a community and nation? Why would the Lord have inspired Mormon to include this story if it wasn’t to expose modern day Korihors and protect ourselves from Anti-Christs? Do we have any responsibility to our friends and neighbors to warn them when we recognize an Anti-Christ?

I believe when we fail to warn our neighbors of humanist/atheists we fail to use the Book of Mormon as the Lord intended and we further endanger our political and religious freedoms by ignoring the dangers of failing to serve Jesus Christ and failing to heed the warnings of the Book of Mormon.

Ezra Taft Benson wrote:

“Now, that divine duty to be a faithful fighter for freedom requires that those of us who have been warned do our duty to warn our neighbor, for our neighbor’s involvement in this struggle can bless his soul, strengthen his family, and protect him from pitfalls while he helps his country. The blessings far outweigh the burden when we stand up for freedom. With gall comes glory; with a cross comes a crown; with thorns comes a throne, if we will persevere in righteousness. There are still more victories to be won in this fight for freedom, the most important of which is to save our own souls by taking a stand for liberty with the Lord. For amid the encircling gloom, the kindly light of the Lord can lead us on—can help expose and stop evil in some places, slow it down in others, give the forces of freedom the chance to become better entrenched, provide righteous alternatives, and develop faith and hope to keep on keeping on in the divine assurance that in the brightness of the Lord’s coming, the darkness of Satan’s conspiracy will eventually be fully exposed and destroyed.” (God, Family, Country: Our Three Great Loyalties, pg. 404)

So what kinds of things did Korihor extol that we should watch out for?

In Alma 30:14 Korihor mocks prophecies of Christ and calls them the “foolish traditions of your fathers.” Applying that to our local situation, we’ve seen Korihors clearly identify similar “foolish traditions” in the humanist agenda that denies Christ and exalts man. This comes from John Goodlad and John Dewey. Both humanists like Korihor. We’ve also clearly seen that William Meyers wrote that our divinely inspired Founding Fathers initially gave us a republic, but Mr. Meyers was grateful we were moving toward democracy. A shift from God’s law, to man’s.

Verse 16 Korihor mocks the righteous people again expressing that their belief in Christ is the effect of a “frenzied mind” and says “this derangement of your minds comes because of the traditions of your fathers.” Again he is trying to tear down their righteous heritage.

Verse 17 Korihor commends the humanist religion preaching “that there could be no atonement made for the sins of men, but every man fared in this life according to the management of the creature; therefore every man prospered according to his genius, and that every man conquered according to his strength; and whatsoever a man did was no crime.” This dangerous doctrine is the same doctrine espoused in the Humanist Manifesto, signed by John Dewey and taught by his disciple John Goodlad.

In the April 2010 General Conference, Elder D. Todd Christofferson emphasized this modern day problem saying:

“The scriptures, for example, discredit an ancient philosophy that has come back into vogue in our day—the philosophy of Korihor that there are no absolute moral standards, that ‘every man prosper[s] according to his genius, and that every man conquer[s] according to his strength; and whatsoever a man [does is] no crime’ and ‘that when a man [is] dead, that [is] the end thereof’ (Alma 30:17–18).”

Verse 18 expresses the sad success Korihor had in getting many people to believe what he was teaching and many of them fell away from their beliefs in God.

Now the story gets applicable. After Korihor was successful in areas of Zarahemla, he travelled to the land of Jershon to preach this same doctrine to the people of Ammon who were converted Lamanites. Verses 20-21 say when he arrived, these people “were more wise than many of the Nephites; for they took him, and bound him, and carried him before Ammon, who was a high priest over that people. And it came to pass that he caused that he should be carried out of the land.” These people knew how to deal with Korihor. They rejected his teachings and cast him out.

Korihor then travels to the land of Gideon and thankfully these people also show wisdom and take him to their high priest Giddonah where Korihor again preaches his doctrine of the foolish traditions of the fathers in believing in Christ. He mocks prophecy, and says the priests glut themselves on the labor of the people thus keeping them in bondage so they cannot enjoy their “rights and privileges.”

Giddonah recognized the hardness of Korihor’s heart and orders him sent to Alma in Zarahemla. There, Korihor again preaches his doctrine and the account says he proceeds to blaspheme God. Alma then corrects the notion that the priests are glutting themselves by identifying their ministry as a lay ministry. Then Korihor asks for a sign and Alma strikes him dumb by the power of God so that he may not promote his lies any further.

Korihor expresses regret and sorrow and says that the devil came to him and taught him what he should teach the people. He then wrote Alma “I have taught his words; and I taught them because they were pleasing unto the carnal mind; and I taught them, even until I had much success, insomuch that I verily believed that they were true…”

So Korihor taught the devil’s doctrines because they are pleasing to the carnal mind, and once he had success convincing others, he was convinced they must be true.

I believe the application of this account is, don’t give Korihor a voice. We should reject his words just as the people of Jershon and Gideon did. In the end, the Lord struck him dumb to silence his voice. When we give voice to the Korihors of today, we receive the sermons of the devil, the teachings of an Anti-Christ, truth mixed with lies that will lead us away from Christ and away from the safety of our homes and the righteous traditions of our fathers.

Certainly, not everything Korihor ever said was false. Truth mixed with falsehood makes it tough for people to discern if they are not firmly rooted in the truth. Hearing truth opens the heart and then when lies are presented to an open heart, they may hit fertile ground and begin to grow unless that person knows to reject the seed.

In the October 1970 General Conference, Elder Ezra Taft Benson said:

“As a watchman on the tower, I feel to warn you that one of the chief means of misleading our youth and destroying the family unit is our educational institutions. President Joseph F. Smith referred to false educational ideas as one of the three threatening dangers among our Church members. There is more than one reason why the Church is advising our youth to attend colleges close to their homes where institutes of religion are available. It gives the parents the opportunity to stay close to their children; and if they have become alert and informed as President McKay admonished us last year, these parents can help expose some of the deceptions of men like Sigmund Freud, Charles Darwin, John Dewey, Karl Marx, John Keynes, and others.

John Dewey and John Goodlad are modern day Korihors teaching there is no Christ and that children should be separated from the foolish traditions of their parents and taught by the state who they teach has rights to our children.

These false doctrines will destroy families and give rise to a generation that struggles to believe in Christ. Regardless of how much truth these Anti-Christ’s may espouse, all their words must be rejected because their Agenda is to open the hearts of people and plant the seeds of the destruction of their faith. They must not be given a voice of authority in our community and schools. We must not let their lies be entertained here.

45 Responses to “Dealing with Korihor”

  • Loni:

    Well said, Oak!!!

  • rek11:

    Well said. Its empowering to finally see someone have the courage to step up and speak boldly in our day of “Hiding behind political correctness”. My ears crave for the truth to be so openly spoken. I also fully understand that “the wicked take the truth to be hard” and will fight it at every turn. This conflict truly is a battle for our liberty, and I believe, the only way to succeed in fighting this battle, is with the power the light of truth brings to expose the deception the darkness creates. We need leaders that can and will speak with such boldness.

  • Guest:

    Oak – This is an excellent article. When you write like this – using the scriptures, the words of the prophets, and the spirit, your thoughts and feelings are clear, non-combative, and convincing. I believe if read with an open heart, even some of the school board members might be more inclined to listen and do the research that will show them the association with Goodlad's theory of education is the wrong choice for ASD.

  • Dave lambson:

    Thanks Oak! The question we must now ask ourselves is “if we are not seeking the truth, then what is it we are seeking?” ONLY the truth will set us free again, and their is only one real source of truth, even Jesus Christ. The battle field has been laid. Who will put on their armor, take up their sword, shake off the shackles of lethargy? “Who's on the Lords side who, now is the time to choose.” May God bless and protect your continued vigilance. I will gladly take up the banner and join the fight. You have my complete support. __Dave Lambson

  • billlewister:

    Well said Oak. The point is well taken. I will pass this on!

  • Wade:

    Nice article Oak. You have wrote previously of Goodland, Dewey, and Meyers explaining their positions and I believe including references. If you would provide links to your previous writings and include references to the following it would make your argument more complete. It would also allow others of us to catch-up with what you've been working on and help support you better.

    “This comes from John Goodlad and John Dewey. Both humanists like Korihor. We’ve also clearly seen that William Meyers wrote that our divinely inspired Founding Fathers initially gave us a republic, but Mr. Meyers was grateful we were moving toward democracy.”

    “This dangerous doctrine is the same doctrine espoused in the Humanist Manifesto, signed by John Dewey and taught by his disciple John Goodlad.”

    “John Dewey and John Goodlad are modern day Korihors teaching there is no Christ and that children should be separated from the foolish traditions of their parents and taught by the state who they teach has rights to our children.”

  • Dianne Lind:

    An absolutely fantastic article! Thank you for your inexhaustible dedication to this cause. I will pass this on.

  • Religion makes man lazy. The basis of your essay proves such. The main lesson you propogate is the religionists (Mormons in particular) should learn is to just not listen to heathen rationalists and God will strike these blasphemers dumb, unable to continue their Korihoristic falsifications of the truths of God and they will be left to beg door to door amongst humble God-fearing Christians. Their charity was so Christ-like he had to leave and go begging to the other outcasts where he was killed. Great lesson. And you call others “heathens”…unreal.

    As you said about those in Jershon: “These people knew how to deal with Korihor.” Unfortunately for you (fortunately – for those who love the Constitution and what America truly stands for), you don't live in a theocracy which allows you to bind and present people before the local spiritual and legislative leaders for banishment them from their communities for Constitutionally protected free speech you simply disagree with.

  • Terry, thanks for the comment and opportunity to clarify.

    First, I don't see anywhere above where I call people heathens.

    Second, I'm not in favor of binding anyone. We all have free speech and have a right to use it. The point I was trying to make above is that the lesson of the Book of Mormon is that an Anti-Christ shouldn't be listened to. That's what I meant by not having a voice, not that we would ever bind someone or take freedom of speech away, just not give heed to any of their words because it's so hard to discern between the truth and the lies. The example above showed the people bound Korihor simply to get him outside their city limits and then let him go. They didn't want the mixture of truth and lies taught in their communities.

  • If you look up any definition of heathen, you called people heathens. The point is irrelevant. I don't necessarily find it offensive. From an LDS-religious persepective, you hit a home run though. Find a target, isolate, use authoritarian-based quote to back it up, mix dogmatic opinion to give hint of intellectual prowess and then discredit histories of work based on differences of opinion from reknowned secular minds because certain mouthpieces of God differed in thought.

    Good thing no LDS prophet has ever said anything that has been proven false or blatantly wrong. Then we'd have to discredit everything that ever came from them. Too bad for secular scholars they can't use the same LDS safety net…”Well, they were only speaking as men not as ______ (insert secular field of study here) when they were proven wrong.”

    Personally, I find it offensive that Benson (and now you) would work to denigrate an entire body of a man's life work simply because Dewey was an atheist. Besides, maybe some future LDS prophet will have vision where Sigmund Freud, Charles Darwin, John Dewey, Karl Marx, John Keynes, and others will join the fold in the after-life.

  • Thanks for posting these links Terry. I've been planning to post the original humanist manifesto sometime soon so people can see that humanism isn't just the absence of religion, it is a self-proclaimed religion. “FIRST: Religious humanists regard the universe as self-existing and not created.” Utah state law specifically forbids secularism in schools so humanist thought is equally inappropriate to LDS, Jewish, Muslim, and all other faiths having specific tenets taught.

  • Terry, would you care to expound on the message of the Korihor story and give a different perspective? I'd love to hear your view. Like I said earlier, it's not that these men are 100% wrong, it's just very hard to separate the truth from the errors and so it's best to avoid it altogether.

  • Guest:

    I am a Secular Humanist and I have to say this blog and post are the exact reasons I will never take the LDS church serious. They constantly marginalize groups different than them and make people like me feel like a second rate citizen. I would think coming from their pioneer heritage they would have more tolerance on those that are different.

    Posting the original Humanist Manifesto is ridiculous, times, ideas, and understanding changes and besides ideals, cultures, and backgrounds differ by as many people that differ. It is not a religion, which is based on authority, but more an ethical way of living. Anyway, just had to add my own two cents. Thank you for the hate doctrine.

    I am just grateful that our Founding Fathers thought about protecting me as well.

  • I'd really rather not give an differing view on the Korihor story. To you audience, it would just seem like the writings of Laman and Lemuel after having been exposed Nephi for so long. They wouldn't get a fair shake.

    I just oppose absolute views. If the history of religion, even Mormon religion, teaches us anything, it is that doctrines and dogmas continually change, progress and (gasp) evolve. Of course, in the LDS realm, it is God (who for reasons of His own and unknowable to us) who changes the policies, procedures, teachings etc. and not men.

    I share your sentiments though. “…it's not that these men are 100% wrong, it's just very hard to separate the truth from the errors and so it's best to avoid it altogether.” I just apply it towards organized religion.

  • Guest:

    Thank you.

  • Dear guest, I would defend your right to have that view just as much as I would protect anyone else. I'm sorry you feel marginalized, but it's a difference of opinion, not an attack on you personally. The problem to me isn't that people have these views, it's when those in authoritative positions try to espouse it down into our education system that directly impacts my children. I've posted elsewhere how Goodlad's NNER has tried to push the homosexual movement into BYU, a private institution with it's own views. Obviously they rejected that, but the record shows the influence these organizations have.

    This essay is also my personal view, not an official view from the LDS church. Individual statements by leaders of the church should be taken in their own context. I have written what I have written as a personal reflection that may resonate with other like-minded individuals.

    As for our Founding Fathers, they sought to protect us against majortarianism (ie. democracy). Goodlad espouses democracy should apply to knowledge and morals. If we accept this, then the majority will trample on the rights and beliefs of the minority, which is exactly your point.

  • Korihor:

    I can tell the difference between your points and those you quoted from authorities. Here is the sad thing, there was a time when I would let the missionaries from your church eat at my table because their concept of love and truth seeking seemed to go hand and hand with my own humanist views. Those days are gone…it is clear what kind of people their message is pumping out and I don't need another further witness to determine what kind of fruit a bad seed produces.

  • Well that's too bad you feel that way. Maybe you could take the high road and invite them in for a meal and show them a great example of love and kindness in spite of me and your previous comment that you will never take the LDS church seriously.

  • hods6mom:

    Wow, Korihor.

    I even agree with Oak's basic premise here….. and trust me when I say that Oak and I don't agree on much.

    Oak, I don't have the same issues with the 4 Moral Dimensions you do, because what is found within them isn't original to Goodlad. He just happened to collect these ideas under the heading of 4 Moral Dimensions. And there are just too many differing definitions to what a democracy is to base all you do on that one word. You wind up arguing terminology all day long, and how does that help your main concern?

    And I don't agree that because I apply what is within those Dimensions inside of a classroom or in my home that this makes me a socialist, so stupid that I would cross over into any of Goodlad's other more original work.

    You can find some of what is in those 4 Moral Dimensions within even the Church educational setting.

    I think the motto should be changed. I think it is too confusing. However, I disagree with your method of getting it changed.

    Throwing a net of suspicion over a whole district isn't the way to go. A person can come away from your blog with suspicion towards ANYONE who works within ASD. Not to mention that your blog is exceptionally polarizing, which doesn't help your cause.

    And that isn't me being critical, Oak. I'm giving you and honest to goodness heads up based on many people that I have spoken with.

  • Tammy, you made my day. We agree on something. :) Thank you for reading it. I can only hope it helps you understand where I'm coming from a little better.

    I know I've said it many times, but I will work at it even more to make sure people know that I am not criticizing all the people in the district, but a policy, motto, and pockets of people that have buy in and enforce it on others. And just like this article points out, there IS good in Goodlad (not just the name :)) and his 4 moral dimensions have elements of truth to them, but it would be best for us to divest ourselves of him and find a suitable replacement that doesn't come with his Agenda.

    I'm also open to suggestion. You say you agree on changing the motto but disagree with my methods. I know what it took to get the math program changed here (which started with pretty mild requests and slowly escalated), and it was way back then that I brought up the motto, but nothing has changed. So if your suggestion includes kindly informing the board that it's motto is incorrect or contains a mixed message, that's been tried for a few years. In fact, I was completely ignoring ASD at Tim Osborn's request when I started this site. I was going straight to the state office to get them to put the word Republic back into the state standards. Then a number of events sort of catapulted ASD into this issue and brought us to this point. I will be doing a couple clarifying posts in the near future. I'm quite tired at the moment and have been very neglectful of other things like our weed bed out back, my family, and of course some sleep, so my posts will probably slow down as much as I can make myself. :)

  • England1776:

    Terry, interesting comments. I missed the reference that Freud, Darwin, Dewey and Marx etc were condemed and beyond all hope. I have no problem with judging people by the fruits of their labors. Truth is not negotiable. If you choose not to believe in gravity, or any other natural law, it is no less powerful or effective. I dont hear anyone discussing ones opinion of these men, just the merits of their words and works. I know plenty of atheists who can see that communism and socialism is flawed and violates natural law. Find one nation or civilization who ever had any success with it, anywhere, anytime. It defies natural law and is self-evident that is doesnt work and will never work. Even if people want it to or keep trying it. The “intellectual” definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Thanks for sharing.

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    Natural law? Are you saying that capitalism is a part of the natural order of the universe? Interesting and very radical! I thought I've heard it all, but I guess you learn something new every day.

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    Is there a quote from an LDS leader that specifically states that John Goodlad is a modern-day Korihor? It just doesn't make sense that BYU, a school owned and operated by the LDS church, would sanction John Goodlad–a modern day Korihor according to Prophet Norton. I think that Prophet Norton is pushing the line of acceptability by making it appear that the LDS church is condemning John Goodlad. I'm not sure that Prophet Norton's long talk about modern-day Korihors would be sanctioned by the LDS church and people who read this forum need to be aware that they may be following a false prophet or at least someone who is acting as someone who speaks for the church and God. Attacking John Goodlad and using LDS speeches out of context to do so is once again, pushing a very fine line. Until the LDS church leadership speaks specifically in regards to John Goodlad, I'm going to disregard the religious attacks being perpetuated by Prophet Norton.

  • Professor:

    “Educators must resist the quest for certainty. If there were certainty there would be no scientific advancement. So it is with morals and patriotism.”

    “Most youth still hold the same values of their parents…if we do not alter this pattern, if we don’t resocialize, our system will decay.”

    “The state we should strive for is better described in Deweyan terms as a social democracy.”

    “Enlightened social engineering is required to face situations that demand global action now.”

    All these quotes are Goodlad that parallel the philosophy of Korihor, which is culturally destructive.

    I'm a university professor and all universities today are infused with modern day Korihors. Including BYU.

    Additionally, the quotes in Oaks article are not taken out of context. In encourage readers to study the entire articles. Read them and you will discover they strengthen the point that we have been warned about what is happening in our school systems today. In fact there are many, many more addresses that prophetic about were we are today.

  • Lewis, President Benson warned us specifically about John Dewey. John Goodlad is a follower of Dewey, he's been a keynote speaker at John Dewey Conferences and has won the John Dewey award. They are birds of a feather. Do you believe Goodlad is not a “type” of Korihor?

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    I do not believe Goodlad is a type of Korihor unless the church says he is a Korihor. As of right now, BYU, which is run by the LDS Church, currently espouses Goodlad. Guilt by association is not necessarily a good way to judge someone's character and the fact that the LDS Church has not condemned Goodlad but instead has propagated his philosophy through the McKay College of Education is reason to not condemn Goodlad as a Korihor at this time. You can do as you want Oak, since this is your website, but I follow the current leaders of the church. We do have a living prophet, you know and your insistence in hanging on to every word of Benson and comments he made as a politician rather than a prophet, flies in the face of that notion.

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    If BYU is infused with modern-day Korihors, then the LDS church is also infused with modern-day Korihors. Try as you might to separate BYU from the LDS church, but the fact remains that a sitting general authority is currently at the helm of BYU and most assuredly the problems Oak has with Goodlad have made themselves known to the church–yet silence on the issue has ensued. I've decided to write a letter to the LDS Church leadership, asking for direction in the matter. As much as I like Oak, he does not represent the LDS church.

  • Lewis, it's truly amazing how you twist what I write and try to imply things I've never said. When have I ever said I represent the church? If you're having difficulty reading, right at the top of the article I declare this is “my opinion.”

    You also say that you follow the prophets and imply that I don't and then you accuse me of hanging onto the words of *President* Benson (a prophet) and declare them invalid because he was speaking as a politician and not a prophet. That's pretty bold of you. You declare you follow the prophet and I don't yet I'm quoting Benson and you're not providing any evidence I'm wrong. A prophet can do more than declare doctrine. A prophet is certainly capable of speaking out on social issues under the inspiration of heaven, and where 2 of the 3 quotes above were concerning how to use the Book of Mormon in its proper role, I'm more than a little surprised at your words.

    I'm also very gratified to know that you like me. :)

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    Oak, like I said before, we do have a living prophet and the fact that the LDS church as remained silent over the Goodlad controversy speaks volumes. Like I said before, I will write the church leadership and ask for direction in regards to the Goodlad/BYU controversy.

  • Michelle Stone:

    Oak, I think the work you are doing is incredibly important, courageous, unselfish, and inspiring. Thank you!

    Yes there are modern day Korihors all around us, and within our ranks. In case anyone hasn't noticed, Amalakiah, another Book of Mormon Anti-Christ who directly plotted to overthrow the freedom of the people, was an ordained priest in the church. (See Alma 45:23-24 & 46:3). Of course there are Korihors in our midst, and if we would be wise we would “bind” them–not literally, but by eliminating their influence in our community, as Oak is working to do.

    If we need the current church leaders to treat us like helpless babies and tell us what to do on this one specific issue, then what is the purpose of the truths we have been given, and of the gift of the Holy Ghost which testifies of the truth–or falsehood–of all things. Oak is raising issues that are of critical importance, similar to the way Captain Moroni raised the Title of Liberty, and it is up to those of us who value truth and freedom to rally to the cause. Of course there will be those who say that we are overreacting, extremist, paranoid, etc. But while there is much name calling, there has yet to be anyone who can disprove these things. Let's see how well it works out for us if we keep on blindly saying “All is well in Zion” while we (and our children) are being led carefully away down to hell (2 Nephi 28.) Wow, it is almost like Nephi saw our day!

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    It is hard to fathom that all this hysteria and talk of Korihors began when ASD adopted BYU's education philosophy. I sometimes wonder if all this is a bad, bad dream, and then I will wake up and sanity will once again return to North Utah County.

  • Dahl24:

    Thanks Oak.

    I remember Pres. Benson saying these things. We all have work to do.


  • Just as a point of correction: “President” Benson didn't say these things. “Elder” Benson did.

  • Actually Terry, “President” Benson is correctly attributed in the first two quotes since he became prophet in 1985 and the talk referenced is in 1986 and the book was published in 1988. The third quote from him I intentionally left off “President” since I knew someone would come along and make a claim like you did. :) I suppose it would have been more correct to put “Elder” in front of his name on the last quote but I just left it off.

    If you are LDS and arguing this point, it's really a weak argument as if an Apostle who is sustained as a prophet, seer, and revelator carries some drastically less level of authority as to nullify their words by merely pointing out he isn't the president of the church and has no right to inspiration in the things he says or writes. President Benson never retracted or corrected any of his prior statements made while an apostle which he could have done if he felt any were in need of correction.

  • Jon F:

    Terry, when you say that we “don't live in a theocracy which allows you to bind and present people before the local spiritual and legislative leaders for banishment them from their communities for Constitutionally protected free speech you simply disagree with” you are not taking into consideration that they were a republic and lived by the law. One law was that you could not lie. as in Alma 1:17 “Nevertheless, they durst not lie, if it were known, for fear of the law, for liars were PUNISHED; therefore they pretended to preach according to their belief; and now the law could have no power on any man for his belief.” Since it was illegal to lie, he was bound and taken to the officials to be judged according to the law. When he pretended to say it was his belief, then the charges were obviously dropped and he was allowed to go free. Korihor's problem was that he contended with the power of God… which is ALWAYS a BAD idea.

  • Jon F:

    Terry, when you say that we “don't live in a theocracy which allows you to bind and present people before the local spiritual and legislative leaders for banishment them from their communities for Constitutionally protected free speech you simply disagree with” you are not taking into consideration that they were a republic and lived by the law. One law was that you could not lie. as in Alma 1:17 “Nevertheless, they durst not lie, if it were known, for fear of the law, for liars were PUNISHED; therefore they pretended to preach according to their belief; and now the law could have no power on any man for his belief.” Since it was illegal to lie, he was bound and taken to the officials to be judged according to the law. When he pretended to say it was his belief, then the charges were obviously dropped and he was allowed to go free. Korihor's problem was that he contended with the power of God… which is ALWAYS a BAD idea.

  • lewisbarnavelt:

    From reading all of these posts and the Korihor posting by Mr. Norton, there is a desire to turn our public schools into Ultra-conservative institutions of learning with a very LDS bent. I wonder how that will serve the patrons and students of North Utah County who are not LDS and who are not ultra-conservative? This isn't just about ASD dropping the words “enculturate” and “democracy” from the ASD motto, but about creating a vacuum that will be filled by ultra-conservative ideas that are just as biased and intolerant as liberal biases. Oak, when you use LDS scripture to justify your changes to ASD and thereby judging Goodlad and friends as Korihors, you are making it obvious that you wish to see LDS theology incorporated into the public school system. It might be helpful to use the Bible, Koran, or Torah from time to time instead of just the Book of Mormon. You might pick up more Christian followers if you do rather than alienate them. Ben Franklin would agree because he was a man who included all religions and made great strides to include them as part of America.

  • Lewis, you should seriously consider applying for a job with the press. :) You'd be just as accurate. I'm a pretty open book if you haven't been able to tell from my websites. I don't have much of a “hidden” agenda since I write so openly about things.

    1) You're labeling me “ultra-conservative” and at the same time you're upset that I labeled Goodlad a Korihor. Are you throwing stones in a glass house??? I'm in favor of putting the word Republic back into our state standards and having our school district focus on solid research-backed academics so now I'm “ultra-conservative.” Can you prove that? Extra points if you use the Book of Mormon to do it. :)
    2) I'm in favor of our children reading the Constitution and other founding documents. How exactly is that an intolerant bias?
    3) This article specifically says it's for an LDS audience. Why on earth should I use the Koran or Torah? The fact that I didn't use the Bible in this article is pointless since I'm sharing a story *from* the Book of Mormon. If my article dealt with a Biblical story, I would have used the Bible.
    4) Where on earth you get the idea that I'm trying to turn our public schools into having an LDS bend is beyond me. I've never advocated that nor do I harbor such thoughts in my mind or heart. I would, however, be in favor of doing what our founders suggested and that is teaching the Bible for its moral values, not doctrine.

    Seriously Lewis, why do you keep trying to read my mind? It's not one of your better skills. ;) My wife even has a tough time with it and she's a lot closer to me than you are. Am I just an enigma to you or something? Some type of puzzle to figure out? If you have a question, just ask it.

  • David Taylor:

    By describing the LORD JESUS CHRIST as the lord of this land, everything that proceeds is obviously designed for Mormon ears. Dear Christians, read the above and take note of the subtlety of the LDS bent, attempting to achieve moral standing by piggybacking upon noble themes. The Mormon and Christian perspectives have a superficial resemblance, but the object of LDS worship is not a suitable support because it is a distinctively non Christian being, separate and apart from any Judeo Christian concept of deity whatsoever.

    If the Book of Mormon contains a set of the Ten Commandments for your edification, quietly thank the Mormons for it and move on, despite the fact that they themselves do not understand who God is, was and ever will be. Perhaps this will change. Pray that it be so.

  • Oak Norton:

    David, thanks for commenting. Have you ever read the Book of Mormon? It’s all about Christ and his visit to the America’s after his resurrection. In fact, here’s a link to a Southern Baptist preacher who took the time to read the Book of Mormon and loves the Christ-centered messages it contains.
    Also, just this week, I found this letter from a former-Lutheran turned atheist who took the time to start reading the Book of Mormon and noted that all Christians should read the book. His short letter is here:
    I certainly don’t know why would you say “the object of LDS worship is not a suitable support because it is a distinctively non Christian being.” We worship God the Father in the name of His Son Jesus Christ. We believe that we are saved through the grace of Christ. We use the Bible and Book of Mormon as companion volumes of scripture that both testify of Christ. Unless you’ve read the Book of Mormon and only believe what others say about it, you are liable to not have an accurate representation of our belief in Christ.

  • Pops:

    “We must not let their lies be entertained here.”

    So the obvious question is, why then do you entertain their lies here? If I were running this blog, I would screen comments and simply not post comments from Korihors. Granted, it is sometimes difficult to tell a sincere query from those seeking contention and the purveyors of cognitive dissonance, but some of the comments above are pretty easily screened.

  • Oak Norton:

    David, I just finished watching a most interesting video that was produced by BYUtv called “New Day for the Book of Mormon” which features non-Mormon scholars and ministers who have studied the Book of Mormon and closely examined it and found it to be completely Christ centered. I encourage you to watch it and then actually read the Book of Mormon. It might just change your life. :)
    If you would like a free copy of the Book of Mormon, you can go to this page and request one.

  • Oak Norton:

    Pops, good question. Sometimes it is sometimes hard to tell. I’m also happy to engage in a debate of ideas and answer questions as I think it’s useful for people to see that. However, we should as a society recognize falsehoods and shun them and not listen to those people engaged in destructive philosophies.