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Our life on earth, Adam and Eve, Agency and More.

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by yaddoe, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    I would really love to have a good discussion and pick apart the doctrine found in this brief passage and hear what others have to say about it.
    These are some final words of a man named Lehi to his son Jacob at around 600 BCE. Now really don't want to argue about whether or not Lehi actually existed or not, I would really like to discuss the things that he told his son concerning our life on earth, Adam and Eve, Agency and more. I want to hear what you agree with or disagree with and why.


    "1 And now, Jacob, I speak unto you: Thou art my firstborn in the days of my tribulation in the wilderness. And behold, in thy childhood thou hast suffered afflictions and much sorrow, because of the rudeness of thy brethren.
    2 Nevertheless, Jacob, my firstborn in the wilderness, thou knowest the greatness of God; and he shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain.
    3 Wherefore, thy soul shall be blessed, and thou shalt dwell safely with thy brother, Nephi; and thy days shall be spent in the service of thy God. Wherefore, I know that thou art redeemed, because of the righteousness of thy Redeemer; for thou hast beheld that in the fulness of time he cometh to bring salvation unto men.
    4 And thou hast beheld in thy youth his glory; wherefore, thou art blessed even as they unto whom he shall minister in the flesh; for the Spirit is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. And the way is prepared from the fall of man, and salvation is free.
    5 And men are instructed sufficiently that they know good from evil. And the law is given unto men. And by the law no flesh is justified; or, by the law men are cut off. Yea, by the temporal law they were cut off; and also, by the spiritual law they perish from that which is good, and become miserable forever.
    6 Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth.
    7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered.
    8 Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.
    9 Wherefore, he is the firstfruits unto God, inasmuch as he shall make intercession for all the children of men; and they that believe in him shall be saved.
    10 And because of the intercession for all, all men come unto God; wherefore, they stand in the presence of him, to be judged of him according to the truth and holiness which is in him. Wherefore, the ends of the law which the Holy One hath given, unto the inflicting of the punishment which is affixed, which punishment that is affixed is in opposition to that of the happiness which is affixed, to answer the ends of the atonement—
    11 For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.
    12 Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no purpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.
    13 And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away.
    14 And now, my sons, I speak unto you these things for your profit and learning; for there is a God, and he hath created all things, both the heavens and the earth, and all things that in them are, both things to act and things to be acted upon.
    15 And to bring about his eternal purposes in the end of man, after he had created our first parents, and the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, and in fine, all things which are created, it must needs be that there was an opposition; even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter.
    16 Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself. Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.
    17 And I, Lehi, according to the things which I have read, must needs suppose that an angel of God, according to that which is written, had fallen from heaven; wherefore, he became a devil, having sought that which was evil before God.
    18 And because he had fallen from heaven, and had become miserable forever, he sought also the misery of all mankind. Wherefore, he said unto Eve, yea, even that old serpent, who is the devil, who is the father of all lies, wherefore he said: Partake of the forbidden fruit, and ye shall not die, but ye shall be as God, knowing good and evil.
    19 And after Adam and Eve had partaken of the forbidden fruit they were driven out of the garden of Eden, to till the earth.
    20 And they have brought forth children; yea, even the family of all the earth.
    21 And the days of the children of men were prolonged, according to the will of God, that they might repent while in the flesh; wherefore, their state became a state of probation, and their time was lengthened, according to the commandments which the Lord God gave unto the children of men. For he gave commandment that all men must repent; for he showed unto all men that they were lost, because of the transgression of their parents.
    22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.
    23 And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.
    24 But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things.
    25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.
    26 And the Messiah cometh in the fulness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall. And because that they are redeemed from the fall they have become free forever, knowing good from evil; to act for themselves and not to be acted upon, save it be by the punishment of the law at the great and last day, according to the commandments which God hath given.
    27 Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.
    28 And now, my sons, I would that ye should look to the great Mediator, and hearken unto his great commandments; and be faithful unto his words, and choose eternal life, according to the will of his Holy Spirit;
    29 And not choose eternal death, according to the will of the flesh and the evil which is therein, which giveth the spirit of the devil power to captivate, to bring you down to hell, that he may reign over you in his own kingdom.
    30 I have spoken these few words unto you all, my sons, in the last days of my probation; and I have chosen the good part, according to the words of the prophet. And I have none other object save it be the everlasting welfare of your souls. Amen." ~ Lehi
     
  2. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    I'll highlight some of the Key doctrine taught here.
    -The Belief in Christ,the Messiah, our Savior and Redeemer and his importance
    -For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things.
    -The terms needed for Agency to exist
    -Justice and Mercy
    -The importace of the fall of Adam and Eve
    -The existence of supreme law
    -evidence that God exists.
    -The point of our life on earth
     
  3. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    Hi Yaddo,

    i do have only one thing to disagree with here.

    Vs 22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.
    23 And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.

    It appears old Jacob believed that for sex and reprodcution to have taken place, sin was necessary. Now here is my objection to this idea. When God created Adam and Eve, he gave them this command:
    Gen 1:28
    Further, God blessed them and God said to them: “Be fruitful and become many and fill the earth and subdue

    This is a direct command to procreate...to have sex. It came with his blessing. So this idea that sex and sin are intertwined and dependent on each other is very illogical. God wanted them to have sexual relations, he created the sex organs and the reproductive powers and instructed Adam and Eve to use them.

    Do you view it a sin to do as God asks...to obey?



     
  4. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    My name is Kyle by the way.
    Thank you so much for reading over this passage.
    I figured you would disagree with verses 22 and 23 based on previous conversations.

    In answer to your question, I believe God gave them the commandment to reproduce that they could not fulfill until after they had fallen.
    Basically Don't partake of the fruit, but I want you to reproduce. Then it turned out that they could not reproduce until after they partook of the fruit, basically showing that the fall was a necessary part of God's plan, but they couldn't fall if they didn't disobey.

    So that was the only thing you disagreed with?

    Do you agree with this concerning the importance of opposition and the way God's laws works?
    "11 For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.
    12 Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no purpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.
    13 And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away."
     
  5. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    no i dont agree that there 'needs' to be an opposition for Gods laws to work. If you consider that when Gods laws are obeyed, there is peace and harmony, but when they are opposed there is strife and suffering, then no, we dont need strife and suffering in life. I have never met anyone ever who has said they want trouble to continue or think its beneficial.

    And the fact is that God promises that he will end the strive and suffering and trouble...so he obviously does not agree that we need it to be happy.

    Revelation 21:4 And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.

    Why would he bring an end these things if we need them?
     
  6. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    Okay, so starting from the beginning
    you believe
    "6 Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth.
    7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered."

    but I don't know if you believe 8
    8 Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.

    You believe no flesh can ever dwell in the presence of the Father am I correct?

    You believe in 9
    9 Wherefore, he is the firstfruits unto God, inasmuch as he shall make intercession for all the children of men; and they that believe in him shall be saved.

    but in 10 we bump into standing in the presence of the Father again... that I am unsure if you believe in or not.
    10 And because of the intercession for all, all men come unto God; wherefore, they stand in the presence of him, to be judged of him according to the truth and holiness which is in him. Wherefore, the ends of the law which the Holy One hath given, unto the inflicting of the punishment which is affixed, which punishment that is affixed is in opposition to that of the happiness which is affixed, to answer the ends of the atonement—

    "11 For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.

    And in 11 you do not believe there needs to be opposition in all things and that righteousness and happiness can exist without wickedness and misery and Sense can exist without the existence of insensiblity.
     
  7. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    yes, i have not problem with that statement. The messiah is the redeemer of fallen mankind....he is full of grace and truth.

    Thats correct. No human can dwell physiclly with God because he is spirit and we are flesh and the bible says "no man may see me and yet live". So physically we cannot see or be near God.

    But i think there is another underlying meaning to this verse. Jesus is the way to reside with God in a spiritual sense. God cuts himself off from unrepentant sinners, but he can be near to those who seek him with a repentant heart. Those ones he can draw near to, spiritually speaking.
    yep.

    i would only agree with this if the meaning is that we stand before God in a spiritual sense. A person who cleans his life and implores God for his favor does not have to do so in heaven...he can do it here on earth in the flesh while God can see from his heavenly position.
    So there is no need to interpret this to mean that we will literally and physically be standing in front of God.

    exactly.

    The fact is that God wants mankind to be free of the things which oppose what is good. So God is going to destroy Satan the Devil and the demons. Then he will also destroy those from mankind who seek to oppose what is good and right.

    then where is the opposition going to come from? Obviously God does not want it and so it cannot be said that he created it to co-exist for any purpose.
     
  8. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    Thanks, I enjoy your input.

    11 For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.
    12 Wherefore, it must needs have been created for a thing of naught; wherefore there would have been no purpose in the end of its creation. Wherefore, this thing must needs destroy the wisdom of God and his eternal purposes, and also the power, and the mercy, and the justice of God.

    So you disagree with 12, you because you believe it was God's intent for evil not to exist in the first place, am I right?

    13 And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away.

    Now I believe we went over 13 already, you disagree with this because you believe law can exist without sin, or more so righteousness can exist without sin.

    14 And now, my sons, I speak unto you these things for your profit and learning; for there is a God, and he hath created all things, both the heavens and the earth, and all things that in them are, both things to act and things to be acted upon.

    I am pretty sure you believe in that.

    15 And to bring about his eternal purposes in the end of man, after he had created our first parents, and the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, and in fine, all things which are created, it must needs be that there was an opposition; even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter.

    But you disagree with 15 because you believe that the forbidden fruit didn't have to be there.

    16 Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself. Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.

    Now this is the big question, whether or not you believe in this verse. Could man choose for himself if he was not given a choice? Do you believe agency is essential in order to have happiness? I think this is kind of a key point as to why Lehi believed the presence of opposition is so important. Do you believe Agency, or the ability to choose was an important part of God's plan for mankind?
     
    #8 yaddoe, Mar 18, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
  9. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    correct
    correct. And law did exist without sin for a very long time before the first sin was committed.

    the trees were not in opposition to each other. they represented the two possibilities, yes. But they were not orchestrated to bring sin into the world.

    the tree of knowledge is what gave him a choice. For as long as he chose not to eat from it he was making a choice. And when he chose to eat from it he was still making a choice.
    the choice was always his to make whether he ate or not. It was a choice to refrain and a choice to partake.

    So he could have continued to choose to refrain and sin would never have entered the picture. He obviously made the wrong choice and the consequences were a disaster.
     
  10. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    16 Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself. Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.

    Alright, so in you believe the forbidden fruit did not represent opposition,
    And you also believe that the purpose of the forbidden fruit being in the garden was there to give them the choice to obey or disobey.
    You believe that if they did not have the forbidden fruit in the garden they would have no choice but to obey because they would of had nothing to disobey and they would have been forced to obey.
    You also believe that Man's ability to choose to do what is right rather than be forced to do what is right is important to God.
    And you believe that there is joy in following God's will because we want to compared to because we have to and have no other choice. Am I right?
     
  11. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    yes, i think you've got it right


    but somehow i get the feeling im about to be thrown a curve ball :lol:
     
  12. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    I see the forbidden fruit as the line in the sand and not partaking of the fruit is standing on God's side of the line while partaking of the fruit is crossing the line into sin and from everything you said I am pretty sure you agree with me on that.

    I just find it extreamely interesting how you believe in the importance of opposition in that its presence is key to our agency. So if opposition were ever to disappear entirely we would no longer be free to choose and our agency would be taken away.
    Now I ask you do you believe opposition is sin?
     
  13. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    Ask yourself, is the tree of knowlege the key to your own freewill? Do you need that tree to exersize free will?

    If the tree is the key to our free will, then why dont we all have one sitting out in our yards???
     
  14. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    Oppositon is the key to our ability to choose. Without it we don't have a choice. Now when Adam and Eve were in the garden I see only 2 forms of oppositon for them. 1) Choosing not to multiply and fill the earth and 2) partaking of the forbidden fruit.

    Today we have commandments everywhere and opposition everywhere.
    It wasn't necessarily the tree that was key to our free will, it was the choice to choose what side of the line I want to stand on.
    I need a choice (or options) in order to be able to choose.
    I can choose God's side of the line which is life and happiness, or I can choose Satan's side of the line which is death and misery.
     
  15. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    if you are including the command to multiply as an opposition, then the tree itself wasnt needed.

    The end result is that we can choose to obey God or not....and that is free will. We dont need anything tangible or physical in order to exercise freewill... its within us just as its within a child to obey its parent or not.
     
  16. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    Yup, that is exactly what I am saying, all we need is opposition, the choice available to us to tell God no.

    Now my question is, with this being so, what was the point of the forbidden fruit in the the garden? Why did God give them 2 commandments when in order for opposition to exist he only needed to give them 1 commandment?
     
  17. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    maybe because he knew the command to multiply would be something they would do and want to do. Adam and Eve were humans with hormones like anyone else. Hormones drive the desire for sex which leads to reproduction. God made their bodies in such a way that sex would be a natural desire in them and not something their conscience would need to come to a determination on.

    the tree was really the only rule they had to obey which was a matter of their conscience. They had to use their powers of reason with regard to the tree..they had to consciously choose to obey God. And that is really why God gave them the tree. It was so they could consciously choose to obey him.
     
  18. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    Makes sense to me.
    So in that you agree with 16

    16 Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself. Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.

    Do you now agree with 11? In that if we did not have agency we would be lifeless robots that can only do what we are programmed to do.

    11 For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility.

    Now the only thing I think you might still be hung up on is what I put in red font, the thought of righteousness existing without opposition am I right?
     
  19. Pegg

    Pegg Jehovah our God is One

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    if we did not have free will, we would be like the animals who live by instincts. God gives us the freedom not to be governed by instinct, but governed by our powers of reason.

    well lets put it this way, if Adam and Eve had chosen to use their powers of reason for good, then there would have been no unrightousness, death or corruption.

    the thing i dont agree with is the idea that we need to do bad in order to do good. Thats what i dont agree with.
     
  20. yaddoe

    yaddoe Kyle Adams

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    You believe animals have no agency and are more or less organic robots?

    The only thing I am talking about right now is the importance of oppositon, or the line in the sand, in order to have our agency.
    I am not currently saying we have to do bad in order to do good. I know you disagree with that.
    The only thing I am currently saying is that we can't do good if we are not alive and we can not be alive if we do not have a mind of our own and the ability to make choices, otherwise we are no more alive than a robot. Do you agree with that?
     
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