Cyrus

About a hundred years before the Babylonian Captivity, Isaiah described how it would end. He named a specific individual who would send the people back to Jerusalem and support them in rebuilding the temple: Thus saith the Lord, thy redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb...That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to... Continue Reading →

King-men

Why would a person vote to eliminate their own freedom? I've been intrigued the past couple of weeks by the children of Israel, who insisted on having a king, even after the prophet Samuel warned them of the terrible consequences of this decision: Their children would suffer, they would lose control over their possessions, and... Continue Reading →

The Voice of the People

When the prophet Samuel was old, he tried to appoint his sons to succeed him as leaders over Israel. But the Israelites were not willing to follow his sons, and they requested that he appoint a king. Samuel was troubled. He didn't think it wise to give one person that much power, and he thought... Continue Reading →

Governed by the Law

"Let no man break the laws of the land," said the Lord in an 1831 revelation to Joseph Smith, "for he that keepeth the laws of God hath no need to break the laws of the land" (Doctrine and Covenants 58:21). Jesus taught the same principle during His earthly ministry, "Render...unto Caesar the things which... Continue Reading →

The Constitution

Near the beginning of the Book of Mormon, Nephi describes an expansive vision in which he viewed many future events. One of those was the immigration of Europeans suffering religious persecution to the American continent and the establishment of the United States of America: I, Nephi, beheld that the Gentiles who had gone forth out... Continue Reading →

King-Men and Freedom of Speech

Words matter. Words have an impact, for good or for evil. Jesus said, "Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give an account thereof in the day of judgment" (Matthew 12:36). And Alma warned the people of Ammonihah, some of whom were guilty of deceiving others, "Our words will condemn us" (Alma 12:24).... Continue Reading →

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