Standing up for freedom

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In my Mormonism vs. Islam class I took a few years back at the University of Utah, I learned that Mormons and Muslims had some very striking similarities.  Though Muslims do not believe Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world and Mormons do; Muslims do, however, regard him as a prophet while both believe in Allah or God as the same being.  My teacher was a delightful Muslim woman for whom, to this day, I still regard as a saint as I continue to feel her warmth and love.  I marveled when she taught me the Arabic word “jihad” as it is often translated as “holy war,” but in a purely linguistic sense, the word ” jihad” means struggling or striving.  Keeping in mind the current mindset of Jihadists as extremists who feel they have a “right’ to kill and plunder innocent victims because of hate, doesn’t really jive with the true meaning of the word.  This makes me ponder the real people behind this “holy war” or the Jihadist extremists?  And why would I question such a thing?  Today in my blog, taking from actual historic accounts found in the Book of Mormon, I will reveal some truths behind motives of the ancient people like these extremists today.

I bet most people have no clue that there is an historical record of a similiar people who took an almost exact approach as the terrorists today, they were called Gaddianton Robbers.  The Gadianton Robbers are no new news, they’ve been around since ancient times and the entire Book of Mormon is filled with story after story of their secret oats and evil acts.

There was once a group of people with a high birthright who felt like they should be kings and rulers which is why they fought against the free government whom they believed stole this birthright from them.  Some of the the things they did were: control and manipulate high government figures; withhold food and supplies to armies in order to diminish their numbers and power against their enemies; hide in the mountains; carry people (women/children) captive; heavily recruiting dissenters of God or other vulnerable people (especially children) who they will pay to join them; make secret oaths and covenants; murder, plunder, steal; robbers gain great advantage during times of civil disobedience and unrest and iniquity in general; people try to hide their treasures in the land because their land becomes infested by the robbers but their treasures are lost.

GADIANTON ROBBERS

In the Book of Mormon, a band of robbers founded by a wicked Nephite named Gadianton. Their organization was based on secrecy and satanic oaths.

  • Gadianton caused the destruction of the Nephite nation:Hel. 2:12–13;
  • The devil gave secret oaths and covenants to Gadianton:Hel. 6:16–32;
  • Secret combinations caused the destruction of the Jaredite nation:Ether 8:15–26.

As Found in The Islamic Supreme Council of America, Muslims today believe that:

  • Military action is therefore only one means of jihad, and is very rare. To highlight this point, the Prophet Mohammed told his followers returning from a military campaign: “This day we have returned from the minor jihad to the major jihad,” which he said meant returning from armed battle to the peaceful battle for self-control and betterment.
  • The concept of jihad has been hijacked by many political and religious groups over the ages in a bid to justify various forms of violence. In most cases, Islamic splinter groups invoked jihad to fight against the established Islamic order. Scholars say this misuse of jihad contradicts Islam.

WHAT JIHAD IS NOT

  • Jihad is not a violent concept.
  • Jihad is not a declaration of war against other religions. It is worth noting that the Koran specifically refers to Jews and Christians as “people of the book” who should be protected and respected. All three faiths worship the same God. Allah is just the Arabic word for God, and is used by Christian Arabs as well as Muslims.
  • Military action in the name of Islam has not been common in the history of Islam. Scholars says most calls for violent jihad are not sanctioned by Islam.
  • Warfare in the name of God is not unique to Islam. Other faiths throughout the world have waged wars with religious justifications

Knowledge is power and history repeats itself; therefore, I ask who really are the people behind Jihad?  One thing is certain, Mormon and his son Moroni saw our day which is why Moroni’s statement rings so true on this very day, “Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up.

 25 For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people, for it is built up by the devil, who is the father of all lies; even that same liar who beguiled our first parents, yea, even that same liar who hath caused man to commit murder from the beginning; who hath hardened the hearts of men that they have murdered the prophets, and stoned them, and cast them out from the beginning.

 26 Wherefore, I, Moroni, am commanded to write these things that evil may be done away, and that the time may come that Satan may have no power upon the hearts of the children of men, but that they may be persuaded to do good continually, that they may come unto the fountain of all righteousness and be saved.” Ether 8: 24-26

Many of us are asking how and when did these people come about and what is their motivation?  Like the Gaddianton Robbers, many seek to control and reign with power in high places.  Once the weakening of societal moral infrastructure is in the bag, demons can begin their attack or war on primed people and nations; they are now great targets.  They hate freedom because Satan hates freedom.  Choice and accountability are God’s plan to help mankind grow and progress; Satan is an enemy to God’s plan and has thwarted its purpose from the beginning of time.  They love to elicit fear; fear for today and fear for the future.

“To be sure, the Enemy wants men to think of the Future too-just so much as is necessary for now planning the acts of justice or charity which will probably be their duty tomorrow.  The duty of planning the morrow’s work is today’s duty; like all duties, is in the Present.  This is now straw splitting.  He does not want men to give the Future their hearts, to place their treasure in it.  We do.  His ideal is a man who, having worked all day for the good of posterity (if that is his vocation), washes his mind of the whole subject, commits the issue to Heaven, and returns at once to the patience or gratitude demanded by the moment that is passing over him.  But we want a man hag-ridden by the Future-haunted by visions of an imminent heaven or hell upon earth-ready to break the Enemy’s commands in the present if by so doing we make him think he can attain the one or avert the other-dependent for his faith on the success or failure of schemes whose end he will not live to see.  We want a whole race perpetually in pursuit of the rainbow’s end, never honest, nor kind, nor happy now, but always using as mere fuel wherewith to heap the altar of the future every real gift which is offered them in the Present…..If, on the other hand, he is aware that horrors may be in store for him and is praying for the virtues, wherewith to meet them, and meanwhile concerning himself with the Present because there, and there alone, all duty, all grace, all knowledge, and all pleasure dwell, his state is very undesirable and should be attacked at once.”  C.S. Lewis The Screwtape Letters.

How blessed we are to have the Book of Mormon and it’s inspired writings before our eyes.  It is because of these ancient stories that I am eyes wide open to truth.  Screwtape and his henchman, Wormwood, are cunning little creatures but Wormwood is a weasel whose own fears caused his demise against the Enemy.  There really are no big surprises.

What will the outcome be?  It all depends upon us as free citizens and if we allow fear to overcome us; moreover, will we chose faith and courage leading us to repent and follow God?  Will we stand together as a unified force or will we continue to let every fly-by-night issue continue to divide us?  These practically non-essential points of discussion are the very things that will break us as a society and civilization and do you think Satan doesn’t already know this?  Of course he does!  That is another reason we should not believe in every printed or recorded topic as we are continually being lead to higher levels of fear with every turn.

There are some members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints who are stifled by Joseph Smith’s prophesy that in the last days, the constitution would hang by a tread which has been reiterated by subsequent prophets since then.  However, fear suffocates faith. If we focus on the positive it will make a world of difference in our families: “Thus, rather than simply wait for the one time when the Constitution shall hang by a thread, Latter-day Saints must continually be vigilant. Our commission to save the Constitution is, like salvation, a continuing task, and Church leaders have pointed out the tools available: analysis of constitutional principles, personal study of the history of our nation, reading the Constitution to children at home and in schools, teaching them self-sacrifice—the principle that makes freedom possible—teaching them their obligations as mature citizens, recognizing and resisting ideologies that threaten constitutional principles, and developing loyalty to principle rather than to men or parties.  I have a question June 1976

At this Thanksgiving season, I am so grateful for our freedoms and for our country and I will do everything in my power to preserve her by standing up for our freedoms.  This country is full of amazing people’s of all faiths very much like my Islamic professor and I choose to not let fear of any certain people or their religious affiliation control me because not all are “extremists”, or terrorists. Evil people have always existed.  We can find more purpose and joy as we fill our Present with Charity and Goodwill unto others; to amplify our good works before men and God which perpetrates an unseen power that will overcome the evil one and give us peace.

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