Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

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sock puppet
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Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by sock puppet »

Genesis 3:23-24
Therefore the Lord God sent him [Adam] forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.


From the liturgy for the 3rd Sunday of Lent, the Eastern Orthodox tradition is that the flaming sword was removed from the Garden of Eden when Jesus was born, so that mankind could return to Paradise.

(In Norse myths, Surtur, the leader of Muspelheim giants, wielded a flaming sword of destruction.)

And then, in Mormonism

1/28/1836, HoC vII wrote:When the Twelve and the seven presidents were through with their sealing prayer, I called upon President Sidney Rigdon to seal them with uplifted hands; and when he had done this, and cried hosanna, that all the congregation should join him, and shout hosanna to God and the Lamb, and glory to God in the highest. It was done so, and Elder Roger Orton saw a mighty angel riding upon a horse of fire, with a flaming sword in his hand, followed by five others, encircle the house, and protect the Saints, even the Lord's anointed, from the power of Satan and a host of evil spirits, which were striving to disturb the Saints.


A grand and glorious principle had been revealed, and for years had slumbered in the breast of God's Prophet, awaiting the time when, with safety to himself and the Church, it might be confided to the sacred keeping of a chosen few. That time had now come. An angel with a flaming sword descended from the courts of glory and, confronting the Prophet, commanded him in the name of the Lord to establish the principle so long concealed from the knowledge of the Saints and of the world—that of plural marriage.
(Orson F. Whitney, Life of Heber C. Kimball [Salt Lake City: Kimball Family, 1888], 321.)

While it was a great trial for Mercy to enter into plural marriage, it was even a greater trial for Mary to consent to it. Truly, it was the most difficult thing both ever had to do. It was equally difficult for Hyrum. The principle of plural marriage was given as early as 1831. Joseph Smith had inquired of God to know and understand wherein He justified His prophets of old as touching upon the principle and doctrine of their having plural wives and concubines. The principle was then revealed by the Lord to Joseph. fn He was commanded to obey it. He did not immediately comply. Then, according to Apostle George A. Smith, an angel with a flaming sword appeared to the Prophet Joseph and warned him that unless he obeyed it, he would be destroyed.
(Don Cecil Corbett, Mary Fielding Smith, Daughter of Britain: Portrait of Courage [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1966], 154.)

A grand and glorious principle had been revealed, and for years had slumbered in the breast of God's Prophet, awaiting the time when, with safety to himself and the Church, it might be confided to the sacred keeping of a chosen few. That time had now come. An angel with a flaming sword descended from the courts of glory and, confronting the Prophet, commanded him in the name of the Lord to establish the principle so long concealed from the knowledge of the Saints and of the world-that of plural marriage.
(H. Dean Garrett, ed., Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint History: Illinois [Provo: Department of Church History and Doctrine, 1995], 135.)

So, per Mormonism, a flaming sword has been the tool of the divine to
  • Guard the Garden of Eden/Paradise from mankind
  • Re-open the Garden of Eden/Paradise to mankind
  • Coerce a reluctant prophet to break his marriage vows and take other 'wives'

Did the specter of the flaming sword hang over the LDS to coerce polygamy right up until the time that polygamy was allowed to end, and then removed?

If the only two times god has used the flaming sword was to guard paradise from mankind after the fall and to coerce polygamy, does that put the two on par with one another?

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Racer
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by Racer »

Great observations Sock. It is points like this that really drive home how wacky and ridiculous Mormonism is.

It seems like the sword wielding angel appeared because Joseph Smith was reluctant to get busy with multiple women.

I am surprised that the same angel didn't appear when god wanted to end polygamy. It appears there was some reluctance to stop the practice since many leaders and members continued to perform additional plural marriage sealings after the commandment. Why didn't this reluctance summon the angry flaming sword angel?
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Nightlion
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by Nightlion »

sock puppet wrote:
If the only two times god has used the flaming sword was to guard paradise from mankind after the fall and to coerce polygamy, does that put the two on par with one another?


Polygamy=Paradise :confused:
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https://www.docdroid.net/IEJ3KJh/wonders-of-eternity-2009.pdf
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why me
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by why me »

Actually, the sword also appears in Chronicles and it does resemble the experience of Joseph Smith:

http://bible.cc/1_chronicles/21-16.htm

And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.

And then in chapter 21:

16 David looked up and saw the angel of the Lord standing between heaven and earth, with a drawn sword in his hand extended over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell facedown.

17 David said to God, “Was it not I who ordered the fighting men to be counted? I, the shepherd,[c] have sinned and done wrong. These are but sheep. What have they done? Lord my God, let your hand fall on me and my family, but do not let this plague remain on your people.”
David Builds an Altar

18 Then the angel of the Lord ordered Gad to tell David to go up and build an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. 19 So David went up in obedience to the word that Gad had spoken in the name of the Lord.

20 While Araunah was threshing wheat, he turned and saw the angel; his four sons who were with him hid themselves. 21 Then David approached, and when Araunah looked and saw him, he left the threshing floor and bowed down before David with his face to the ground.

22 David said to him, “Let me have the site of your threshing floor so I can build an altar to the Lord, that the plague on the people may be stopped. Sell it to me at the full price.”

23 Araunah said to David, “Take it! Let my lord the king do whatever pleases him. Look, I will give the oxen for the burnt offerings, the threshing sledges for the wood, and the wheat for the grain offering. I will give all this.”

24 But King David replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, or sacrifice a burnt offering that costs me nothing.”

25 So David paid Araunah six hundred shekels[d] of gold for the site. 26 David built an altar to the Lord there and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. He called on the Lord, and the Lord answered him with fire from heaven on the altar of burnt offering.

27 Then the Lord spoke to the angel, and he put his sword back into its sheath
. 28 At that time, when David saw that the Lord had answered him on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite, he offered sacrifices there. 29 The tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses had made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt offering were at that time on the high place at Gibeon. 30 But David could not go before it to inquire of God, because he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the Lord.

Well...what say you?
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Gadianton
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by Gadianton »

Some great observations, Sock. So at one time God used a flaming sword to prevent sex from happening at all costs between two consenting adults living together naked in a tropical paradise he put them in directly, and then a few days later (in God's time) he brings the very same sword down on Joseph Smith and demands that he enter into a sexual relationship with an underage girl when he was already married (a few times over).

I'd have to say God is rather progressive when it comes to morals.

sock puppet
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by sock puppet »

why me wrote:Actually, the sword also appears in Chronicles and it does resemble the experience of Joseph Smith:

http://bible.cc/1_chronicles/21-16.htm

And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.

And then in chapter 21:

16 David looked up and saw the angel of the Lord standing between heaven and earth, with a drawn sword in his hand extended over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell facedown.

17 David said to God, “Was it not I who ordered the fighting men to be counted? I, the shepherd,[c] have sinned and done wrong. These are but sheep. What have they done? Lord my God, let your hand fall on me and my family, but do not let this plague remain on your people.”
David Builds an Altar

18 Then the angel of the Lord ordered Gad to tell David to go up and build an altar to the Lord on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. 19 So David went up in obedience to the word that Gad had spoken in the name of the Lord.

20 While Araunah was threshing wheat, he turned and saw the angel; his four sons who were with him hid themselves. 21 Then David approached, and when Araunah looked and saw him, he left the threshing floor and bowed down before David with his face to the ground.

22 David said to him, “Let me have the site of your threshing floor so I can build an altar to the Lord, that the plague on the people may be stopped. Sell it to me at the full price.”

23 Araunah said to David, “Take it! Let my lord the king do whatever pleases him. Look, I will give the oxen for the burnt offerings, the threshing sledges for the wood, and the wheat for the grain offering. I will give all this.”

24 But King David replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying the full price. I will not take for the Lord what is yours, or sacrifice a burnt offering that costs me nothing.”

25 So David paid Araunah six hundred shekels[d] of gold for the site. 26 David built an altar to the Lord there and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. He called on the Lord, and the Lord answered him with fire from heaven on the altar of burnt offering.

27 Then the Lord spoke to the angel, and he put his sword back into its sheath
. 28 At that time, when David saw that the Lord had answered him on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite, he offered sacrifices there. 29 The tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses had made in the wilderness, and the altar of burnt offering were at that time on the high place at Gibeon. 30 But David could not go before it to inquire of God, because he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the Lord.

Well...what say you?

FLAMING?

sock puppet
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by sock puppet »

Seems that god liked to use the blade after man invented it. Are there instances where god is claimed to have used gun powder, or say a uzi? Or is god stuck in hand-to-hand combat style weapons?

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zeezrom
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Re: Of Flaming Swords and Men That Talk with God

Post by zeezrom »

I don't have much to contribute to this thread except to say that this is one of my favorite paintings. It is by Franz Stuck and is called, "Angel with the Flaming Sword."

Image
Oh for shame, how the mortals put the blame on us gods, for they say evils come from us, but it is they, rather, who by their own recklessness win sorrow beyond what is given... Zeus (1178 BC)

The Holy Sacrament.

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