There attacks on the Church today regarding its doctrines on homosexuality, homosexual marriage, and women receiving the priesthood. Let us first examine the Church´s official teaching regarding homosexuals and homosexual marriage, and how the lessons learned from Joseph Smith and the 116-page incident can be applied.
Actually, the Church´s teachings regarding homosexuality did not originate with modern day revelation. These teachings are biblical. But I digress; that is a topic for another day. The question here is, “Should the Church continue with its currently policy, ie., homosexual behavior is a sin, and marriage is ordained of God and is between a man and a woman?”
The Church appears to be stuck between a rock and a hard place.
1-The Church can stand firm by the doctrine as currently taught. If it does so, it risks bad press, unhappy people leaving the Church, and claims of anti-homosexual discrimination. It is entirely possible that the day may come when it will be illegal to refuse to perform homosexual marriages in LDS chapels, or even in our temples, and the members of the church will suffer some serious consequences.
2-On the other hand, the Church could reverse its doctrinal teachings, and start performing homosexual marriages, which would make a number of people happy. But, what would be the consequences of that choice:
1-Members would draw the conclusion that God has changed His mind, and has now decided that
it’s okay to be gay. In other words. God is not all knowing, unchangeable, just as flawed as you
or me; In other words, there is no God. Or,
2-The President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is not a prophet. He is simply
another old white guy running another flawed church based on the philosophies of men. This of
course would also make a lot of anti-Mormons happy, and would cause the eventual collapse of
The first option is similar to what the Lord did in the case of the 116 pages; simply carry on and let the consequences come. Neither doctrine or the church is lost.
To follow the second option would be to fall into the trap set by Satan through his followers, those demanding that the Church change to accommodate them. This would be a statement to the effect that God does not determine doctrine, the members do, and it would be the effective suicide of the Church.
The demands of Ordain Women can be seen in exactly the same light. They are demanding that the prophet seek a revelation for women to receive the priesthood. He has and the answer is, “no not at this time.” Yet they are not happy with this and continue insisting. Again I cite Doctrine and Covenants Section 1:38. It is not required that the prophet say, “Thus saith the Lord” before every official pronouncement of the Church. Yet their insistence is reminiscent of Martin Harris’s repeated demands on Joseph Smith to seek a revelation from the Lord to benefit him.
If the Church continues teaching the doctrine that women may not be ordained at this time, it risks unhappy women who may leave the church, additional excommunications, and accusations from the world at large that Mormons are sexist and anti-woman.
On the other hand, if the Church begins ordaining women in order to make a few vocal LDS and non-LDS women happy, we negate the need for revelation. We demonstrate to the world that this church is no different from any other, because the source of our doctrine is the fear of popular opinion, and a desire conform to societal norms. It would negate the existence of divine revelation.
So, as the Lord did in 1828, He will today continue to reveal His will without falling into traps set by evil and conspiring men and women whose true purpose is to undermine the Church´s position that it is led by divine revelation from God. He will also not allow His prophets to make uninspired decisions, influenced by well-meaning members who do not comprehend how the Lord leads His Church, and who allow their preference for the philosophies of the world to undermine their obedience to God through His prophets.