Immortals and David Whitmer
Examining Fantastic Claims
Some consider it a waste of time to examine various teachings that come from unorthodox sources. Granted that most such teachings are far from being 100% true and many of them employ some type of deception, but all of them provide fodder for spiritual exercise that can strengthen the seekers power to perceive real truth.
There are a number of different type of clams to higher contact.
The most common is some type of channeling, usually using direct voice. These channelers will claim to be speaking for a disembodied spirit, a master, God, Jesus or perhaps a space alien.
Some channeled material is fairly impressive and definitely contains some truth and a lot of other is mumbo jumbo.
A second method is mental telepathy where the subject receives messages while in full consciousness with no other being taking over the body or vocal cords.
Some very high quality material has been received this way.
A third is by inspiration/revelation from God or one’s Higher Self.
A Fourth is through visions of some kind where the subject actually sees things and tells us about them.
The fifth and the rarest is through a personal visitation by an immortal in a physical body. This is by far the rarest claim of them all. When such a claim is made it usually involves only one or two visitors and not with much frequency.
The other thing about this claim is that it is pretty black and white. All other sources of revelation can be written off by skeptics as some type of delusion, but a physical presence that you touch and feel is either something has happened or did not.
The person making such a claim should definitely know if his encounter really happened – unless he is under some type of strong delusion or illness.
David Whitmer, descendent of the Book of Mormon witness, makes a claim of physical visitations from more immortals, more frequently than any person I know about in history.
Moses only saw one immortal – Jehovah. It is recorded that Jesus saw two on the Mount of Transfiguration. Joseph Smith recorded seeing some on at least three occasions, but this guy has them all beat. In response to the question as to whether he actually touched Jesus’ physical body he said:
“Many times. Almost daily for a little over a 7-month period when He was my father. Every day, He would come and get me and take me places. He took me out to the Great Salt Lake and he baptized me in the Great Salt Lake. He confirmed me into the Church of the First Born.”
The question that comes to my mind is why would Jesus, who most of us would assume is a very busy guy, spend time almost every day taking this guy places and visiting with him? After all, there are billions of souls under his stewardship. If he is confined to one resurrected body then you would think that there would be some really great cause involved. As it turns out David Whitmer died in obscurity, far from accomplishing a mission like Moses or Elijah.
Then we find that Jesus was just one of the immortals visiting him. He says,
“I met Moroni, the brother of Jared, seven different Jaredites, about six or so Nephites, including Moroni, two of the three Nephites that are translated. All of them gave me different things, different things to do with the patriarchal Priesthood and what I need to do just for my family. Joseph Smith and Joseph Smith Sr. came and that was the first time I actually saw the Lord in person and not just in a vision. They ordained me to what they called a probationary Patriarchal Priesthood and then sealed me as a son to Joseph Smith Sr.
“I was baptized by John the Baptist into the Church of Christ.”
“I was baptized by Joseph Smith Sr. into the Church of Christ and confirmed in the Church of Christ. I was baptized by Joseph Smith Jr. and it happened to be in the baptismal font of the temple in the city of Enoch.
“I was baptized and confirmed into the Church of Enoch. Joseph Smith Sr. is the one who confirmed me. Joseph Smith Jr. baptized me directly, in person as a resurrected being.”
It appears that immortals were lining up just to befriend this guy. Overall he said he was baptized 38 times. Seems like overkill and why would he have to be taken to the City of Enoch to be baptized? It looks like he was baptized twice into the church of Christ – once by John the Baptist and once by Joseph Smith Sr.
When I come in contact with a person who claims to be speaking for supernatural beings I consider it a red flag when they claim to be speaking for a half dozen famous characters. Usually the quality of their material is no higher than they could write themselves.
Now this guy comes across as kind of rough around the edges. The only picture I have seen of him has him wearing a cowboy hat. He looks like a fairly simple farmer or handyman. He was a carpenter by trade.
Now, I do not write anyone off because they may seem ordinary, as the scriptures tell us that God will work through “the weak things of the world,” to accomplish his work.
You get the feeling when reading his words that he is a simple man and at least he believes that what he is saying is true. The big question is whether or not he was deceived wholly or in part.
Perhaps the biggest drawback for his claim is the lack of witnesses. The scriptures tell us that all things should be established by two or more witnesses. There seems to be no witness to all these spiritual events except himself alone.
The big test for me is not the claim of authority or contact, but the teachings themselves.
The interesting thing about Whitmer is that he has come up with some provocative teachings that are beyond the mind of the average farmer to conjure up. Though it is notable that his obituary quotes friends as saying he was a great storyteller.
In my next installment we’ll look at his teachings objectively and see how much sense they make before I give my final conclusion.
If you missed Whitmer’s interviews check them out here:
An Apocalyptic Prediction
The first interesting thing David Whitmer talks about is that most of Utah will sink as if into a great sink hole causing the Salt Lake to flood the Salt Lake City area. He saw just the spires of the temple sticking above the water. He says he talked to a geologist friend who told him that there was a great hollow area 300 feet thick under the Salt Lake Valley. If this is correct it adds some credibility to his vision, though I cannot find any viable information on this.
The trouble with this is that I know of no one who has received a second witness to this though there have been visions of flooding and destruction recorded. Because the scripture says that God’s judgments will begin at his own house many have set in their minds that the Salt Lake area is going to suffer a lot of destruction . Maybe this is why so many have visions about it, though they all differ somewhat.
A popular one of recent times is recorded in the book “Visions of Glory.” He saw that we were invaded by foreign armies and shortly after that there was a great earthquake that brought flooding and destruction to Salt Lake, thought not as great as seen by Whitmer. Also this guy saw the flooding was from fresh water not from the Great Salt Lake as in the Whitmer vision.
Then, after this an even greater selling LDS related book by Julie Rowe was published. She saw great destruction hitting Utah, but it seemed to come from a foreign attack followed in vision by foreign troops.
The only thing all these visions have in common is that Utah, especially Salt Lake, is headed for great destruction, as a sign of the cleansing of the church or in preparation for Zion.
Which one are we to believe? I do not recall Visions of Glory setting a date, but Julie Rowe set some that did not materialize. Also Whitmer’s statements sound as if he would be here participating in the event, but he died in 2014 so that will not happen
I would say that if great destruction as some type of Divine act were to occur that first there must be a warning given to the church. I wouldn’t expect a great devastation like those predicted unless we first hear a significant warning voice.
Yes, I know that at any given time that there are a few fundamentalists warning the leaders of the church of destruction, but few ever hear of them. This warning would have to be loud and clear with the general membership being aware of it.
Neither Julie Rowe, the anonymous author of Visions of Glory, or David Whitmer warned the general authorities, for they did not consider them out of order.
I think it is entirely possible that some type of destruction will come to Salt Lake and other parts of the country, but not sure of the timeline or exactly how it will happen. I’ve always felt I (and others) would receive some type of message if something were of imminent concern. So far that has not happened.
The problem with predictions of destruction is that many false ones come to the minds of seekers because of a misreading of the Book of Revelations and other scriptures. Because of this, for every prediction of doom that comes true, there are dozens that do not – and none of the big doomsday ones have materialized yet.
Visit by an Angel
Next was an interesting account of an angel telling him to request his ancestor’s (David Whitmer, of Joseph Smith’s time) Patriarchal blessing. Then it turns out that the angel was the original David Whitmer.
It is no secret that David Whitmer did receive a blessing from Joseph Smith Sr. as this knowledge is published on the web. Here is the LINK
It appears that a copy is available for the public for the site says:
“Copies of the manuscript and transcripts exist for the blessings of the following people” and then David Whitmer’s name is in the list.
Whitmer probably knew his grandfather had a blessing and wanted a copy, with or without an angel telling him. He most probably felt a nudging of some kind to go ask for it.
He says the First Presidency didn’t want a copy released but it looks like a copy is presently available.
If it is not really available perhaps it is because (according to the angel) it said this:
“David Whitmer, had been given all of the keys for the gathering of Israel in Jackson county for the building up of the temple.”
Apparently, the authorities did not want this out because they figure they have all the keys. Also it looks like the prophecy failed as Whitmer never gathered Israel nor built a temple in Jackson County.
On the other hand, there is available a blessing given to him by Joseph Smith Jr that is about as controversial. Here it is:
“Blessed of the Lord is brother David [Whitmer], for he truly is a faithful friend to mankind, and he should be beloved by all, because of the integrity of his heart. All his words are as steadfast as the pillars of heaven, because truth is his only meditation, and he delighteth in it, and shall rejoice in it forever. The Lord God of Abraham, of Isaac and of Jacob, shall be on his right hand and on his left, and shall go before his face, and shall be his rear ward, and his enemies shall become an easy pray unto him; for behold, he it is, whom the Lord hath appointed to be captain of his host, under the guidance and direction of him who is appointed to say unto the strength of the Lord’s house, Go forth and build up the waste places of Zion. A mighty shaft shall he be in the quiver of the Almighty in bringing about the redemption of Zion, and in avenging the wrongs of the innocent. He shall yet stand upon the land of Zion, from whence he has been driven, and shall find inheritance there; and shall be a ruler in Zion until he is old and well stricken in years. And shall enjoy an abundance of the precious things of the lasting mountains, and shall have part with his brethren in all the good things of this earth, and shall never want a friend. He shall bring down his adversaries under his feet, and shall walk upon their ashes when their names are blotted out. His name shall be a blessing among all nations, and his testimony shall shine as fair as the sun, and as a diamond it shall remain untarnished. There shall not be a spot upon his character while he lives, neither upon his seed after him unto the latest posterity: he shall not be forsaken nor his seed found begging bread. Amen.”
Oliver Cowdery, Clerk and Recorder.
Given like the foregoing blessings, by vision, to Joseph Smith, jr. the Seer, September 22, 1835, and recorded Oct. 2, 1835. [p. 14]
There’s quite a bit there that did not materialize in Whitmer’s lifetime that could also have been embarrassing to the church.
If grandfather Whitmer is to gather the saints in Jackson County it looks like the only way that will happen is if he is born again in the flesh and currently no one alive seems to be claiming to be that guy.
Whitmer on Reincarnation
Whitmer says this about reincarnation:
“There are multiple mortalities. If they came down and rode around on their motorcycle and didn’t do what they were supposed to they might have to do it again. I don’t want to open up a whole can of worms on that either.”
Then in the other interview when asked about it he kind of backtracked and said:
“A lot of people I’ve run into can remember past lives. What I’ve found is that they’re remembering being a guardian angel for someone else and all of their memories are that person’s life. It’s not them living the life; it was them being a guardian angel or in charge of someone else’s life so that they could record it and that’s where their memories are coming from that I’ve personally run into.”
Though it is possible to tune into the past lives of others if there is some genuine need for it, most past life memories belong to the person. Using regression techniques many (including myself) have taken people back to past lives where they can relive them in real time. When this real time regression takes place the subject does not see that life from a distance as if he were an angel looking in on someone here on the earth, but as an actual participant. I have had people speak ancient languages and correct accents from the past ages.
Subjects regressed to the period between lives report having a guardian angel who they usually call a guide who also assists them in the spirit world.. This being is usually further up the ladder of spiritual progression than themselves and all of them are fairly advanced in knowledge. I do not know of any regressionists reporting that past lives memories come from guides. There are reports of sharing past life memories in preparation for a future earth life.
When Whitmer does acknowledge reincarnation he seems to imply that it just happens to some people.
The truth is that all of us have lived many past lives and most of us will have many more to come.
Visualize the day Bill Murray lived over and over in Groundhog Day as being one life. Just as he had to live that day over many times to finally get it right and obtain liberation from the cycle – even so must we live a life over and over until we get it right. Unlike Groundhog Day though, each life gives us a new situation with new challenges.
Women and the Pristhood
Whitmer says this about women and the priesthood.
“Women don’t need the Priesthood because they already serve others, they already know how so they don’t need to learn it. On the Melchizedek level the woman share in the Priesthood with their husbands, but they don’t need their husband there to do it. They can anoint with oil, they can bless,
“It wasn’t that the men had the Priesthood and the women had nothing. It’s that the women didn’t need to have it because they didn’t have the natural man’s instincts of “me first.”
“The wife will always give that to any kid. They’ll even give the best steak to their husband, won’t they? Naturally, that’s because they already know how to serve others. Men have to learn that so they’re given the Priesthood in order to put a harness on them and make them do it.”
This is an explanation that taps into the Mormon thoughtform, but it doesn’t present the whole truth.
The only truth he is seeing here is that there is a difference between males and females.
The real difference is in their polarization of energy, not in their spiritual evolution or spiritual qualities.
All of us have known men who are giving and willing to serve as well as generous and women who you want to avoid like the plague, and vice versa.
The truth is that men and women, as a whole, are about the same in spiritual evolution and qualities. If you are a man and feel superior then how will you feel when you incarnate as a female in a future life? We all incarnate in both male and female bodies. Without going through both the male and the female experience we would wind up with a major gap in our final knowledge and understanding.
Those men who mistreat women and see them as inferior are likely to reincarnate into a religion where they have few rights and are a plural wife. This will be their sentence to hell.
The real difference between male and female is the energy. There are two energies in the universe and they are called by many different names such as, male/female, positive/negative, yin/yang etc.
The basic difference between them is one is a sending energy and the other a receiving one.
Now all of us have both energies within us but those in a male body generally have more of an impulse to send than receive and those in a female body have more of an impulse to receive than to send.
We see this comically playing out when a couple gets lost. The female wants to stop and ask directions (receiving) but the male resists receiving and wants to send them off to a few more turns in an attempt to find their bearings.
Because the male half has the impulse to send they have engineered society in the past so their sex has dominated in leadership positions in both politics and religion.
That is changing as society as a whole has evolved and people of today realize the virtues of both sexes and that we all have some of the two impulses within us.
In a just society sending and receiving will not be dictated to in black and white terms, but the males will take the opportunity to receive as feels right and the females will have their opportunity to send as seems good to them.
In a spirit of freedom and opportunity both sexes will be happy in their energy but will sometimes venture out of it to obtain balance.
He teaches that we were born as spirits though the result of regular sexual intercourse. He says:
“You are born as a male and a female at the same time. It just happens that the male comes out first and he holds the hand of the female When you come out and now you are twins. A brother and a sister as full twins.”
This twin soul, (also called twin flames) idea is unusual in Mormon circles but very popular in the New Age community.
What is popular in many belief systems is the idea of a soul mate, for the soul mate is seen as almost like a twin in that this person will understand you and love you like you do yourself.
Many there are who in their single years look far and wide for their twin soul or soul mate. Then after they settle in with marriage many figure they got the wrong one. There are a lucky few who feel they found their one and only.
What is the truth here?
Paul gives us a hint when he says, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” Gal 3:28
We are not conceived and then born into the world of spirits through sexual intercourse and physical birth as happens here on the earth. The process takes places through an interplay of spiritual sending and receiving energies manipulated by the thought of very advanced beings. The spirits are not male or female in form unless they want to assume such a form for some reason. Compared to us here on earth they are “neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus,” as Paul says.
That said, there is a principle of differentiation involved here in that nothing is completely neutral. Even in this state there is in each entity an inclination towards male or female, though in the spirit world it is very slight compared to the strong impulses we have here on earth.
So why is this strong feeling in many that they have a soul mate or twin soul out there?
The answer is that in the spirit world before birth we belonged in a certain soul group, or family where there were others that we loved very much who were vary similar to ourselves. The members of a soul group are in a similar state of spiritual evolution and share a powerful sense of belonging together. There will be one that you are closest to and when you meet that one on the earth you will feel like you have found your soul mate. When you meet any member of your soul group there will be sparks and the relationship on earth will be very intense.
If you marry a member of your soul group there will be great passion, but the marriage may still have problems. Often there is still much to learn for both members when they meet on the earth.
Whitmer teaches that a number of the scriptures are symbolic in meaning. Concerning the Second coming he says:
“The Second coming of the Lord is just talking about the spirit of you coming forth and taking over.”
He also says this:
“If you say the earth itself has to go under a big cleansing change now to get ready for the coming of the Lord, they’re not talking about the earth they’re talking about your body. Get it ready. Get it cleansed. It’s going to have to have earthquakes, it’s going to have to have tornadoes in it to get out all the parts. All the earth is a symbol representing what has to happen to your body.”
The coming of Christ in us is similar to many new age teachings that the Second Coming represents the Christ Consciousness within us becoming manifest. Interestingly this does have some scriptural support:
“To whom God would make known what is the riches of glory of this MYSTERY among the Gentiles: which is CHRIST IN YOU, the hope of glory.” Col 1:28
“LET THIS MIND BE IN YOU WHICH WAS ALSO IN CHRIST JESUS: who being in the form of God, thought it not mockery to be EQUAL WITH GOD: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men…” Phil 2:5-7 “…That the life of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.” II Cor 4:10
So the scriptures do support the idea of Christ manifesting in us, but it doesn’t specifically relate this occurrence to the prophesied Second Coming.
I have taught that there are several stages to his coming and the manifestation and popularization of the Christ consciousness is stage one. We are currently in the midst of this stage as many now believe that we are to manifest the Christ in us in some way.
On the other hand, I have taught that the actual Second Coming is more than symbolic and the entity who is Christ will manifest again in the flesh, though not quite in the way that the churches teach. Some of the scriptures relating this event are symbolic.
Then again at another time Whitmer sees a more orthodox Second Coming where Christ appears and destroys the wicked.
Whitmer teaches that much of the Book of Revelations is symbolic. He says
“There are seven churches in there that they talk about; Ephesus, Smyrna, Thyatira (see Revelation chapter 1:11). All they represent is the seven levels you personally have to go through getting into the presence of God. There is the Church of the setting in Order, that is the first one. The Church of the Restoration, the Church of Christ, the Church of Noah, the Church of Abraham, the Church of Enoch, and then the Church of the Firstborn.”
This is in harmony with what I have taught about the seven churches which, in my book The Unveiling, I present as seven stages the disciple must go though on the path to become like Christ. I present them as stages of consciousness rather than churches which seems an odd way to teach it to me. Whitmer says nothing about some of these stages so there is not a lot to comment on here.
On the other hand, he does make a quite literal use of the number 144,000. He says that the Father of Jesus presides over 144,000 other Fathers and the 144,000 represents the firstborn of each of these Fathers. Then each one of these need to find 144,000 more sons. Strange doctrine which didn’t resonate with me as he presented it.
Then he takes symbolism further by stating:
“No, none of the outward ordinances are (necessary); they’re just representative of what you have to go do. They’re all the Aaronic level. When someone doesn’t do what God wants them to do, personally, then He gives them something to do just to keep them busy.
“The worse the people become the more rules you end up with. If you go down to the prison and you are really a bad guy, they will let you know when you wake up, when you go to sleep, how you dress, when you eat, and everything in your life is controlled. That is no different than the Jews became when Jesus .was in Jerusalem when he was growing up.”
This is pretty much in harmony with my teachings which present the ordinances as symbols of what we must attain in our own consciousness. In addition to this I have taught that ordinances communicate a message to our inner self and do have the benefit in that they may stimulate us into faster progression.
A teaching he gives that will be controversial to many is comparing the good disciple to a good horse or animal. The trained animal does what it is told without asking questions. Whitmer says we must do the same thing whenever we receive something from God.
It does make sense that God has a higher intelligence than us and his will, will take us in a more intelligent direction than our own.
The trouble is that not all communications people receive are from God so it is good to question. In fact Moses questioned Jehovah while he was in his presence. He didn’t agree with his plan to destroy the Israelites and start all over and talked God into changing his mind.
If Moses can question God I would suppose that it is acceptable for the disciple to question a revelation that may seem illogical.
Fortunately, for the disciple, most revelations come with additional light so the seeker can understand why the answer is correct – though there are rare exceptions.
Three Levels of Priesthood
Whitmer talks quite a bit about the various grades of priesthood, but his comments on them are scattered and not presented in any methodical way. After reading through his writings a couple of times here is what I have pieced together concerning his belief on the subject.
There are three priesthoods which are the Aaronic, the Melchizedek and the Patriarchal.
The Aaronic governs the church on a telestial level with a little Melchizedek thrown in. This is the level of priesthood governing the present LDS church which does “physical things like preparing the sacrament, passing the sacrament, they go home teaching, they go to the stake farm…” When he was asked about necessary ordinances he said:
“none of the outward ordinances are; they’re just representative of what you have to go do. They’re all the Aaronic level.”
This level merely deals with outer work to keep the people busy so they can feel like they are accomplishing something. This is basically service for the sake of salvation of self.
His teachings here seem somewhat contradictory because he says he has been administered the outward ordinance of baptism 38 different times. He says he was baptized into the church of Christ by John the Baptist, and then into the church of Enoch, in the city of Enoch itself, by Joseph Smith and finally in the Salt Lake into the Celestial Patriarchal order by Jesus himself.
It really sounds like the outward ordinance of baptism goes way beyond the low telestial/Aaronic order. In addition he says he’s done temple ordinances in the celestial Church of the Firstborn.
The next order up is the Melchizedek. This is after the order of Enoch, or a terrestrial order and is dedicated to the service of others. In one place he says that Joseph Smith presides over this order and then in another he says it is Jesus.
He says that women can hold the priesthood at this level as well as the men.
The highest priesthood he calls Patriarchal. This is basically government over a family unite and is the priesthood used by celestial beings including God. This is a celestial order that also governs the Church of the Firstborn. Apparently it is called the Church of the Firstborn because of a rather elaborate system of birth order in heaven. The little he said about it didn’t make much sense to me.
Those who practice this priesthood on the earth exercise government within their families beyond the control of any church system. He didn’t explain though how his family used this priesthood to govern their family in a way a good non Mormon family does not. What would be the difference?
One could say that since we are all children of God that we are indeed all a part of a great family in the spiritual worlds. However, when we are talking about billions of beings the organization becomes more complex than that of a mother and father governing the family of three kids.
There are many divisions of this great family with many different types of groups involving many different numbers other than 144,000.
Joseph Smith Said that the Melchizedek Priesthood was “after the holiest order of God,” so one would think that would be the highest. He says it is “the key of the knowledge of God.” D&C 84:18-19
This statement is a key to deciphering what the real priesthood is in the higher spheres. Those who have the keys of knowledge have access to the powers of godliness and thus have the power of God or the highest priesthood.
We scratch the surface of obtaining knowledge in this material world, but those who do gain a foothold in obtaining true authority will be recognized by the souls of the pure in heart who encounter them.
I was asked how to respond to LDS members who claim extraordinary powers of the priesthood.
Priesthood in the church is essentially church government and just as those in our U.S. government place strong emphasis in the authority of the three branches so does the church place much emphasis on the branches of the priesthood – which is merely the government of the church.
For those who claim the priesthood gives them the power of God beyond human designated positions, issue them this challenge.
What can you do with priesthood that I can’t do with my non priesthood?
The answer is nothing that can be demonstrated.
I agree with Whitmer’s views on plural marriage, which run contrary to many disenfranchised from the LDS church. Many of these fundamentalist groups and people advocate the doctrine and some view it essential to enter the highest kingdom.
Whitmer sees the practice as a tyranny toward women where they are placed in a situation where the man is the boss and the females are the servants, often commanded to obey.
He says the true plural marriage of a celestial order is represented by Christ and the church. The scriptures call Christ the bridegroom and the members (who are many) the bride.
That is definitely plural marriage of a large order, since Jesus has billions of followers worldwide.
I think these are good points. Plural marriage as practiced in the days of Brigham Young and by current fundamentalists is very repressive for females. This especially difficult for them when a supposed authority from God is used to control them.
It would be much less harmful if people entered into plural marriage of their own free will with no threat of damnation involved and with complete freedom to withdraw at any time. In that case, if they see a mistake is made it is fairly easy to correct, but if one is afraid of hellfire she may be frightened into submission.
He could have expanded the concept of Jesus taking us as plural wives as follows:
Since our goal is to become like Christ then when we take upon ourselves his name we will seek to share what we have with others. Those who accept the sharing become female to the teacher and thus symbolic plural wives.
He says that Satan places himself and his helpers in the place of God over men.
This agrees with my teachings on the beast of Revelation and it is an important piece of knowledge to apply.
Overall he seems to support the Principle of Freedom which differentiates the light from he dark. He sees the Patriarchal order as freeing up people from the dominion of rule by men who take the place of God.
He sees Satan’s method as commanding us to do what we are told, “or else.” He sees God as a father who offers guidance and lets us choose without a threat hanging over our heads.
This leads to a very unusual approach to the scriptures by him as many of them contain statements that we are supposed to do certain things, “or else.”
He said that Joseph Smith (and I assume other prophets) even when they had contact with the voice of God and were writing scripture inserted text from Satan. He says that what happened during numerous revelations received by Joseph Smith is he stopped to think about what he was receiving and this opened him up to receiving false doctrine from the wrong source. Thus we have to read the scriptures by the spirit or we will be deceived. He said this:
“…go read the D&C and find out. Take a highlighter, a yellow one and a pink one. If you can tell that’s coming from the Father – if it’s love, forgiveness, and it deals with the law of the harvest – do it yellow. When you run onto something saying, “You either do this-or else.” Start doing pink. You can be right in mid-sentence when all of a sudden it will switch back.”
He started this process with the scriptures so he could have an undefiled book, but never finished.
I agree that no man is infallible and we need to consider all things through the light of the Spirit and pure reason. Even the purest of words can be interpreted incorrectly if the receiver filters through eyes of illusion and lower desire.
He makes this odd statement about the Sealed Portion:
“What the sealed portion of the gold plates are, are ramblings about the Patriarchal order.”
The Book of Mormon says the Sealed Portion is about the history of the world from the beginning, so I would assume it contains more than ramblings.
Here is another unusual one:
“When you get your calling and election you have to pay for your own sins.”
Unlike many who claim contact with God he did not focus on future dates. He said he didn’t know when the great destruction of Utah would take place, though he seemed to assume he and his family would be here when that happened. He did talk about three men “sealing Temple Square for the return of the saints in seven years,” which would be 2002. Not sure what he meant by the return of the saints, but nothing unusual happened about saints returning as far as I know.
I think that Whitmer had some inspiration that filtered down through his belief system, but I am far from convinced his words are literally true.
Unfortunately we only have two transcripts of his words so we do not have a lot to go on to assess the man, but there are a few things.
As he begins speaking in the first document, he centers his words around himself talking about what a successful missionary he was. The only reason to throw this in is to alert the listener to what a special person he is.
This may seem like a small thing, but every deluded prophet has a big ego so a large ego is the first flaw one needs to look for in examining claims.
Another common one is in exaggerated claims. There are a couple not related to the supernatural that I question.
First he says that during his mission he taught 112 people and baptized 112. In other words, he has a 100% success rate. This sounds about as hard to believe as his claim that Joseph Smith baptized him in the City of Enoch.
I had more success than most on my mission and probably baptized about a third of the people I taught. For a lot of missionaries it was around 10%. The only way for anyone to achieve 100% would be to tie them up and drag them into the water.
Then he says they instantly converted a hardened atheist with an IQ of 200 to God by pointing out that a watch had to have a watchmaker and us humans who are more complicated would also need a creator.
I think every atheist on the planet has already heard this argument and it doesn’t convince them. There has to be more to this story.
Another claim that may be exaggerated is his statement that his nine children have their calling and election made sure. He says, “They’ve had visitations, ministering of angels.”
I would suppose these children are still alive. It would be interesting to check with them to see if they all have really seen the risen Lord.
These things that sound like exaggerations make me suspect that his supernatural events have been exaggerated. After all, this man claims to have had more visitations and spent more time with immortals than all the prophets of the Bible combined.
He has not only seen Jesus and God the Father, but Moroni, the brother of Jared, seven different Jaredites, about six or so Nephites, all three Nephites that were translated, Joseph Smith Jr., Joseph Smith Sr., David Whitmer, the witness, Abraham, and John the Baptist. On top of this King David from the Bible is one of his guardian angels.
In addition to this, his time with Jesus seems exaggerated. He says, “Almost daily for a little over a 7-month period when He was my father. Every day, He would come and get me and take me places.”
Now with billions of people to tend to why would Jesus spend part of almost every day for seven months taking Whitmer places? For Jesus to spend that much time with an individual you would think there would be some grand purpose behind it.
Whitmer said this:
“You need to sanctify what you take into your mouth so that it will become your flesh. You need to sanctify what you drink so that it becomes your blood so that those become sanctified. That’s the renewing of the body. And the spirit of you needs to be in charge of that so that that can actually happen. So, that’s another ordinance in your Heavenly Father’s reality needs to take place. That’s the renewing of your body – overcoming sickness and disease and death.”
Whitmer died at age 74 in 2014 of a brain tumor so he wasn’t quite able to renew his body and overcome “sickness and disease and death.”
How long the tumor affected him we do not know, but it is possible it caused him to have some illusions that he took for reality.
In summary I think David Whitmer was a sincere man who wanted to serve God to the best of his ability and did have some spiritual experiences and received some valuable insights. I would recommend reading his account through the light of the spirit, but wouldn’t bet on the idea that his whole story is literally true. After all, his obituary did say he was a good storyteller.
Copyright by J J Dewey
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