I didn't quite get it either. Are Ron and I the grimy kids, or the 
fathers in this story? And if so, would Ron be the kind-hearted father?  
I don't recall ever striking my kids like the first father, so I know it 
doesn't apply to me, however I also wasn't so neglectful as he was to 
just say a few words and then walk off.  My kids cleaned their rooms 
because it was expected of them, and if they didn't do it, they were 
punished (groundings, etc).
I see God doing the same thing. Yes, occasionally our actions create 
their own illness/punishment, but on many occasions, God brings his 
wrath down upon his children. If you don't believe it, just read the 
scriptures. As it is, the 2nd Coming is described as the Lord coming in 
red clothing to stomp the grapes of the vineyard with a fury. 
Yet, there is also a softer side to God, as he patiently works with each 
of us--as long as we are willing to be worked upon.

So, portraying God as either a harsh taskmaster on the one hand or as a 
milquetoast on the other is to paint God as being two dimensional. He 
isn't either of these, yet is both of them.

And as I raised my children, I used both methods. And as I work with 
those around me, I use both methods as necessary. I don't just sigh and 
lecture from the bedroom door. I step into the room, offer to help clean 
things up, and insist that it is cleaned.
Gary Smith



Ron Scott wrote:
> 
> I'm lousy at parables. Please explain.
> 
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: Jonathan Scott [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >Sent: Monday, March 22, 2004 6:23 PM
> >To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >Subject: RE: [ZION] Vote Now!
> >
> >
> >Grimy Teeth
> >©2004 by Jonathan Scott
> >
> >     Once upon a time there were two boys and
> >they were the best of friends.  Unfortunately for
> >both though, they were both about as lazy as they
> >could be.  They would wake each morning from
> >under their two piles of never washed blankets to
> >stand in the middles of their never cleaned rooms
> >to look out the grimy panes of their never washed
> >windows to see the clutter that filled their
> >never tended yards.  And they were each happy.
> >The disgust of their environment apparently did
> >not disgust them.  And each of them lived their
> >lives contentedly amidst the grime, the roaches
> >and the disease.
> >
> >     One day, one boy's father saw his son
> >desperately coughing as he lay contentedly upon
> >his gray and sickly bed and the father knew that
> >his son would soon become even more sick and
> >possibly die.  He knew that if the boy did not
> >clean his world now that he might not live much
> >longer.  And so, out of fear for his son's well
> >being, the father began to yell and scream at him.
> >     "HOW CAN YOU LIVE LIKE THIS?" he yelled.
> >     "ANIMALS ARE MORE KEMPT!  YOU SHAME ME
> >WITH YOUR LAZINESS!" he screamed.
> >     The father then picked up his hand and
> >struck the boy across his face and the boy fell
> >to the ground in tears.
> >     The father then stood over the boy and
> >threatened to strike him again if he did not
> >change his ways.
> >     "I'm sorry.  I'm sorry.  I'm sorry."
> >spoke the boy in absolute fear through his gray
> >and grimy teeth.
> >     "CLEAN THIS ROOM AND THIS WORLD NOW OR
> >WHEN I RETURN I SHALL BEAT YOU TO PIECES!" yelled
> >and screamed the father.
> >     The father then stood and left the
> >room...leaving the boy to sit on the ground sick
> >with fear.
> >     And so, the boy stood and began to clean.  He was afraid.
> >
> >     On that same day, the other's boy's
> >father came to his room to see the filth and
> >grime and disease of his son.  He also was amazed
> >at the extent of the grime.  But, because the son
> >was yet healthy and not yet in danger, he knew
> >that he could take his time to teach the boy.
> >     "Son, this is not good.  You cannot live
> >this way.  If you continue to live like this, you
> >will catch some sort of disease and you might
> >die.  Son, I love you.  Please stand up and
> >clean."
> >     "OK father." said the boy through grimy
> >teeth.  He then rolled over in his gray and
> >stained bed and went back to sleep.
> >     The father was sad, but chose to let the
> >boy choose his own life.  He kicked aside the
> >empty cans and cereal boxes and made his way to
> >the door of the bedroom.
> >     The next day, the father returned to see
> >the boy still in bed.  On the boy's face there
> >was a rash.  And when the father entered, the boy
> >seemed to not be able to lay comfortably amidst
> >the garbage.  His body seemed to be in pain.
> >     "Son, the pain that you are feeling and
> >that rash that is on your face both come from the
> >garbage that you live amongst.  If you clean,
> >your body will heal.  Please clean.  I love you."
> >     The son, understanding somewhat the
> >message of his father stood from his bed and
> >began to clean.
> >     The father smiled and left.
> >
> >     The first boy managed to clean his room
> >before his father returned and therefore wasn't
> >beaten to pieces by him.  As you can probably
> >guess, that boy never loved his father.  He was
> >too afraid of him to love him.  And so he lived
> >the rest of his days in fear.  He was never very
> >happy.  And he was never grateful for the health
> >and long life that his father had given him.
> >     The second boy struggled with cleaning
> >his entire days.  After years of filth, sickness,
> >and inconvenience though, the boy began to
> >understand and to change.  The boy eventually
> >learned to clean of his own free will and loved
> >his father for having cared enough about him to
> >teach him.  He had health and a long life and
> >loved his father till the end of his days.
> >
> >
> >
> >>  >-----Original Message-----
> >>>From: Gerald Smith [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >>>Sent: Monday, March 22, 2004 12:04 PM
> >>>To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >>>Subject: RE: [ZION] Vote Now!
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>That's a cop out. A touchy, feely, liberal cop out.
> >>>You either need to
> >>  >defend your position, or give ground.<
> >>
> >>Oh phooey. You're itching for a fight and I'm not going to give
> >>you one, no matter what names you call me or how you twist my
> >>words.
> >>
> >>As I noted earlier,  I emphasize the "teaching"
> >instructions from
> >>Christ; you emphasize the "repentance" message. Both
> >lead to the
> >>same end.  I just happen to think my way is more productive.
> >>You're entitled to do as you will. Have a good time.  I'd argue
> >>that teaching effectively always provokes repentance whereas
> >>crying "repentance" from the rooftops does not always provoke
> >>learning and true repentance. By the way, the last thing Christ
> >>did on this earth was "forgive."
> >>
> >>Ron Scott
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>>The Bible is VERY clear that Christ preached
> >>>repentance. In Matthew
> >>>4:17, it tells us that "From that time Jesus began to
> >>>preach, and to
> >>>say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."
> >>>
> >>>This is literally the first thing he did after baptism
> >>>and his 40 day
> >>>fast.
> >>>
> >>>What was the last thing Jesus did? He stood with his
> >>>disciples and told
> >>>them: "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations,
> >>>baptizing them in the
> >>>name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
> >>>Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have
> >>>ccommanded you:
> >>>and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the
> >>>world. Amen."
> >>>(Matthew 28:19-20).  And what did he command them to
> >>>teach? Repentance.
> >>>
> >>>How about in our day?  Let's try D&C 19 on for size:
> >>>13 Wherefore, I command you to repent, and keep the
> >>>acommandments• which
> >>>you have received by the hand of my servant Joseph
> >>>Smith, Jun., in my
> >>>name;
> >>>14 And it is by my almighty power that you have received them;
> >>>15 Therefore I command you to repent—repent, lest I
> >>>asmite• you by the
> >>>rod of my mouth, and by my wrath, and by my anger, and
> >>>your bsufferings•
> >>>be sore—how sore you know not, how exquisite you know
> >>>not, yea, how hard
> >>>to bear you know not.
> >>>16 For behold, I, God, have asuffered• these things for
> >>>all, that they
> >>>might not bsuffer if they would crepent;
> >>>17 But if they would not repent they must asuffer• even as I"
> >>>
> >>>So, while he will forgive IF we repent, we must suffer
> >>>even as He did,
> >>>if we do not. In fact the blessing of forgiveness and
> >>>mercy is something
> >>>I truly hope and wish for, but I don't gamble on it. I
> >>>work for my
> >>>salvation, repenting as fast and as hard as I can, to
> >>>ensure I merit
> >>>that forgiveness.
> >>>
> >>>As to those who believe Christ is super-forgiving of
> >>>sinners, let's see
> >>>what Nephi says in 2Nephi28:
> >>>"8 And there shall also be many which shall say: Eat•,
> >>>drink, and be
> >>>bmerry; nevertheless, fear God—he will justify• in
> >>>committing a little
> >>>sin•; yea, elie• a little, take the advantage of one
> >>>because of his
> >>>words, dig a fpit• for thy neighbor; there is gno• harm
> >>>in this; and do
> >>>all these things, for tomorrow we die; and if it so be
> >>>that we are
> >>>guilty, God will beat us with a few stripes, and at
> >>>last we shall be
> >>>saved in the kingdom of God.
> >>>9 Yea, and there shall be many which shall teach after
> >>>this manner,
> >>>false and vain and foolish• cdoctrines•, and shall be
> >>>puffed up in their
> >>>hearts, and shall seek deep to hide their counsels from
> >>>the Lord; and
> >>>their works shall be in the dark.
> >>>10 And the blood• of the saints shall cry from the
> >>>ground against them.
> >>>11 Yea, they have all gone out of the away•; they have become
> >>>corrupted•.
> >>>12 Because of pride•, and because of false• teachers,
> >and false
> >>>doctrine, their churches have become corrupted, and
> >>>their churches are
> >>>lifted up; because of pride they are puffed up."
> >>  >
> >>>So, Nephi tells us that some in the last days are going
> >>>to push the
> >>>extreme forgiveness idea of Christ. I'm sure you aren't
> >>>as extreme as
> >>>some evangelicals who think that a mere belief in
> >Christ merits
> >>>exaltation. But such are called false teachers with
> >>>false doctrine. And,
> >>>in fact, the blood of the saints shall cry against them!
> >>>
> >>>Now, I believe God is very forgiving. After all, he
> >>>offers a kingdom of
> >>>glory to almost all his children. However, that does
> >>>not extend to
> >>>exaltation. D&C 76 describes the exalted as the valiant
> >>>ones, not the
> >>>wishy-washy. In Revelation, God says he will spew the
> >>  >lukewarm out, so
> >>>as to give us no misgivings as to what is required for
> >>>exaltation.
> >>>
> >>>Now, just where are these scriptures that you seem to
> >>>believe in? And
> >>>no, it isn't a matter of semantics. We agree that
> >>>Christ is merciful,
> >>>but modern prophets have also told us that mercy cannot
> >>>rob justice.
> >>>
> >>>Gary Smith
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>Ron Scott wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>>  Gary:
> >>>>
> >>>>  Look, I don't think we're ever going to agree.  I'm
> >>>probably as
> >>>>  aware as you are as to what God taught and what he
> >didn't. I
> >>>>  think are differences are in approach. I'm inclined
> >>>to teach the
> >>>>  gospel, you seem inclined to preach repentance.  I'm
> >>>inclined to
> >>>>  believe that God must be a pretty forgiving God if
> >>>he's willing
> >>>>  to forgive the sins of repentant sinners like you
> >and me.  I
> >>>>  believe that God wants to include as many people as
> >>>He possibly
> >>>>  can...and that it's my job to do my bit to ensure the
> >>>roster is
> >>>>  as large as possible.  You take a different tack.
> >>>Good luck to
> >>>>  you.  Our purposes are the same, more or less even if
> >>>our methods
> >>>>  are different.
> >>>>
> >>>>  Ron
> >>>>
> >>>>  >-----Original Message-----
> >>>>  >From: Gerald Smith [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >>>>  >Sent: Sunday, March 21, 2004 1:42 PM
> >>>>  >To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >>>>  >Subject: [ZION] Vote Now!
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >How about his prophecy that Jerusalem would be
> >>>>  >destroyed by God for its
> >>>>  >sins?  Since Christ is God, he was doing more than just
> >>>>  >foreseeing an
> >>>>  >event - he was being Judge, Jury and Executioner.  He
> >>>>  >will do it again at
> >>>>  >the Second Coming.
> >>>>  >We must remember that the Mosaic Law was a lower law -
> >>>>  >but still a law of
> >>>>  >God.  Regardless of the punishment, the sin of
> >>>>  >homosexuality was still a
> >>>>  >sin that was punishable under the law.  In earlier days
> >>>>  >in the USA, it
> >>>>  >was also considered a crime punishable under the law.
> >>>>  >And Just because it is no longer punished, does not
> >>>>  >make it heinous or
> >>>>  >sinful.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >And what Christ taught was not forgiveness, but
> >>>>  >repentance.  Forgiveness
> >>>>  >is what was given AFTER people repented.  Christ did
> >>>not teach
> >>>>  >forgiveness to the Pharisees, but called them to
> >>>>  >repentance. He did not
> >>>>  >preach forgiveness to the Jews or Samaritans, but
> >>>>  >repentance.  He
> >>>>  >forgave, because it was within him to forgive those He
> >>>>  >chose to forgive.
> >>>>  >Had his mission been nothing but forgiveness, he would
> >>>>  >forgive all
> >>>>  >mankind, including Cain.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >Instead, he came to bring balance between Justice and
> >>>>  >Mercy, but only on
> >>>>  >condition of repentance, which is what he preached.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >I think too many get fixated on what seems to be God's
> >>>>  >leniency. In
> >>>>  >reality, the commandments are clear, as are the rewards
> >>>>  >and punishments.
> >>>>  >We are not to judge where a person goes to in the next
> >>>>  >life, but we are
> >>>>  >to judge right from wrong. The JST of Matthew 7:1 tells
> >>>>  >us to judge
> >>>>  >righteous judgment.  I don't condemn people to hell,
> >>>>  >that is God's job. I
> >>>>  >DO condemn sin, telling the sinner that if change does
> >>>>  >not occur in
> >>>>  >his/her life, the person risks hellfire.  Calling
> >>>>  >people to repentance is
> >>>>  >a good thing to do, because only in repentance can God
> >>>>  >bring forgiveness.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >K'aya K'ama,
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >Gerald (Gary) Smith
> >>>>  >[EMAIL PROTECTED]
> >>>>  >http://www.geocities.com/rameumptom/index.html
> >>>>  >LDS Evidences,
> >>>>  >Family History, Food Storage, etc.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >RB Scott wrote:
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >>  Seriously, I don't
> >>>>  >>recall Christ preaching "death" for any
> >>>offense...well, murder
> >>  >> >>perhaps (but I don't recall it).
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >Notwithstanding fairly twisted and bizarre
> >>>interpretations, what
> >>>>  >Christ taught was forgiveness, not death.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >I think too many get fixated and judging others, relishing
> >>>>  >damning others to hell. What Christ taught was
> >that it is our
> >>>>  >responsibility to forgive all, to leave
> >judgements to Him.  I
> >>>>  >suspect when that great and dreadful day arrives, more
> >>>>  >than a few
> >>>>  >of us will be very, very surpised.
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >>
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >>>>  >//////////////////////
> >>>>  >///  ZION LIST CHARTER: Please read it at  ///
> >>  >> >///  http://www.zionsbest.com/charter.html      ///
> >>>>  >////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >>>>  >/////////////////////
> >>>>  -----------
> >>>>  >
> >>>>  >
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>Gerald (Gary) Smith
> >>>geraldsmith@ juno.com
> >>>http://www.geocities.com/rameumptom
> >>>
> >>>////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >>>//////////////////////
> >>>///  ZION LIST CHARTER: Please read it at  ///
> >>>///  http://www.zionsbest.com/charter.html      ///
> >>>////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >>>/////////////////////
> >>--
> >>
> >>///////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >///////////////////////
> >>///  ZION LIST CHARTER: Please read it at  ///
> >>///  http://www.zionsbest.com/charter.html      ///
> >>///////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >//////////////////////
> >
> >
> >--
> >Jonathan Scott
> >--
> >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
> >
> >////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >//////////////////////
> >///  ZION LIST CHARTER: Please read it at  ///
> >///  http://www.zionsbest.com/charter.html      ///
> >////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
> >/////////////////////
> --
> 
> 
> 
> 



Gerald (Gary) Smith
geraldsmith@ juno.com
http://www.geocities.com/rameumptom

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