Comments about ‘Don't marginalize religion, Elder Oaks says to Harvard law students’

Return to article »

Published: Saturday, Feb. 27 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Logic escapes some....

Now let's follow the same line of logic of my previous post to determine whether DNA would be able to find a DNA link between me and my wife and my descendants.

Knowing that the Y chromosome is only passed to the direct male descendant means that the only Europeans that would be in my line would be the descendants of both of my sons yet none of their daughters would be European since their mtDNA would be African or Asian but their sons would have European Y chromosomes and African mtDNA (which they can't pass on). This means that the only Europeans in my line would be the sons of my sons but if they married Native Americans this would mean their direct male descendants would be of European descent while all of my other descendants wouldn't have European DNA. As you can see anything in that line that breaks such as one son not having children would sever any DNA link to me which means that you would be hard pressed to find an European in the Native American population since my DNA would be weeded out to a few hundred descendants if lucky.


@7:04 "What happens when intelligent life is found on other planets in the universe and these beings are of another form other than 'men?' If God is an "exalted man" then who is the "God" of these creatures? Just asking."

Try asking your question again after we've actually found some intelligence life on other planets. Until that occurs, your statement really is just a terrible "straw man" argument.

And, out of curiosity, what would you do if it turned out that they were "in the form of men" like ourselves?


I think its high time all superstitions were marginalized.

@ 11:06

I agree completely with you. It does get a bit tiresome listening to all the know all braggers on these posts.


@Why? | 7:04 a.m. Feb. 27, 2010
//What happens when intelligent life is found on other planets in the universe and these beings are of another form other than "men?" If God is an "exalted man" then who is the "God" of these creatures? Just asking.//

I absolutely love the Doctrine and Covenants, and I do believe that there is intelligent life on other planets,and other dimensions. Latter day scriptures make it clear we are not alone. This is from the Doctrine and Covenants 76, in a vision of Jesus Christ by Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon:

22 And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him: That he lives!
23 For we saw him, even on the right hand of God; and we heard the voice bearing record that he is the Only Begotten of the Father–
24 That by him, and through him, and of him, the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.


@Anonymous 1:35 p.m. February 27, 2010

Another scripture that confirms this is in Moses, Chapter 1, in the Pearl of Great Price:

31 And behold, the glory of the Lord was upon Moses, so that Moses stood in the presence of God, and talked with him face to face. And the Lord God said unto Moses: For mine own purpose have I made these things. Here is wisdom and it remaineth in me.
32 And by the word of my power, have I created them, which is mine Only Begotten Son, who is full of grace and truth.
33 And worlds without number have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and by the Son I created them, which is mine Only Begotten.

35 But only an account of this earth, and the inhabitants thereof, give I unto you. For behold, there are many worlds that have passed away by the word of my power. And there are many that now stand, and innumerable are they unto man; but all things are numbered unto me, for they are mine and I know them.


I am a Harvard Law Student and a member of the Harvard Law Latter-day Saint Student Association's Board. I was present at the talk last night and wanted to clarify the circumstances of Elder Oaks' visit for those on this comment thread:

We (LDS Harvard students) invited Elder Oaks to speak at an open forum at Harvard Law School. Non-LDS Harvard Law students and faculty were in attendance. After speaking for 45 minutes, Elder Oaks answered questions posed by audience members for 45 minutes. Most of his speech was about the basic tenants of the Mormon faith, but he answered questions on a wide variety of topics, some of which were difficult and/or controversial.

RE: Lynn

Book of Moses 32:..."Which is my "only begotten"(monogenes)Defined: The word phrase "only begotten is the English(KJV) word phrase translation for the Greek word (mongenes) Which means one and only Son, not an event in time,or orignation as applied to man. Joseph mis-understood the Greek.
Book of Moses 33;...God, talked with him(Moses) face to face." see(Exodus 33;11).."Lord spoke to Moses face to face"
But let thes N.T. interpret the O.T.
"By faith he (Moses)forsook Egypt,not fearing the wrath of the king: For he endureth as see Him who is 'invisable'."(Heb 27:11)
A Christian married to a Mormon

Mormon Convert

I am a collage graduate with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. No, I didn't attend BYU, but I have met Elder Oaks. He is probably one of the best minds on the face of the earth. If he hadn't been called to the leadership of the LDS Church, he could very well be sitting on the Supreme Court.

re: Henry Drummond

You might perhaps be interested in General Conference which will be held the first Sat/Sun in April. It's where the leadership of the church addresses the members of the church and anyone else willing to hear. If you have access to BYUTV on Satelite and cable or can look up the official church website to find out more on how to access these addresses. Thanks for your thoughts.

RE: Cambridge Student

OR is it princton graduate,
as you named yourself in another forum,

it would nice if you decide WHO you really are,

anywho, to my point,

you claim science has disproved religion,

could you actually give some supportable examples of where science has DISPROVED mormonism,

and yopu MUST be able to back it up.

come on just one even.

Seems you are blowing general statements, devoid any substance, that demonstrates hatred for religion,

and not showing you are one that is really is interested in truth,

no matter where it may come from.

Old Snappy

I will never forget two experiences while earning a PhD at U Wisconsin-Madison. Signed up for a graduate class in Ornithology and after four lectures of hatred and derision for religious ideals I dropped the course. My major professor commented he had never had a student with strong religious beliefs stay in that course. Then I had a genetics course from a gifted researcher and teacher. The last day of class he shared his belief that God was the greatest geneticist in the universe and his hope was to some day be counted worthy to be a petri dish washer in His lab.


@RE: Lynn | 4:56 p.m. Feb. 27, 2010
//Book of Moses 32:..."Which is my "only begotten"(monogenes)Defined: The word phrase "only begotten is the English(KJV) word phrase translation for the Greek word (mongenes) Which means one and only Son, not an event in time,or orignation as applied to man. Joseph mis-understood the Greek.//
I'll take Joseph's word over yours any day. Take it in context. It is clear Only Begotten means the Son of God.

If you are a Christian married to a Mormon, you should know Mormons are Christians, just not traditional, evangelical Christians, but Christian, nevertheless, whether you like it or not.


Great article. Elder Oaks is awesome. To bad there are so many pseudo intellectuals out there. Truth is truth where ever you find it be it in religion or science. Elder Oaks doesn't condemn higher education. Maybe you should read about the man, his accomplishments, etc. befire condemning him.


What Elder Oaks has said, is true! I know,befcause I have applied the test he suggested for personal revelation, and have received it.
Rather than forthright opposition to what he has said, why not try it yourself? Ask God if it is true!
What do you have to lose, other than false notions?
Try it, you'll like (love) it.


@Let's use Logic 311:52p.m.:

Let's assume there is no God. If there is no God, then there is no evil...

Not so. Evilness, so called, such as rape and murder was established as bad conduct by humankind because mankind decided eons ago that such conduct brings pain and disruptive life to others. It didn't take God to set that up. God set up other requirements such as "love God" which is almost totally an incomprehensible concept and "have no other Gods before me" which would be alot more realistic if he/she would appear now and then to cast competitive gods aside. Many people develop and worship many other gods and do so with full confidence they're doing the right thing, yet the "only true God" doesn't seem to care a whit. What gives?



["You ask why God and Jesus Christ don't reveal themselves now? You say they should get with the program? Would you believe it if they did?]"

What would there be to not believe?

["Do you believe Joseph Smith's First Vision..."]

A bit of physical proof would be useful.

["I challenge you: talk to the missionaries"]

What new information could they provide?

["Decide for yourself..."]

All decision making requires evidence.

["...anti-Mormons [who] are all over the net like a swarm of termites and will say anything to try to destroy the faith of us Latter-day Saints."]

Their effort would be foolishness should God or Smith have left some evidence in their wake.


I just did a quick google search and found out that 695 U.S. universities offer religion classes or programs. Yeah, so marginalized....

Poor logic...

No, my logic was fine. The burden of proof IS on those who say something exists. That's how science works. You are correct though in saying that as we gather that proof we use hypotheses that must be falsifiable.
Just because YOU think the design argument is true and that the universe is too complex to have happened without the hand of God doesn't make it so. You have zero proof for God or his existence. If you have some, lay it out.

re: wrz

Good questions, but I would ask what physical proof COULD there be that the Father and Son appeared to Smith? Even in this day of digital photography and Google Earth, what if God didn't want the event photographed?

I would say the fact that Smith was willing to be continually tortured, maligned, imprisoned and finally killed because he would not recant his story should at least be considered.

Why would a man be willing to die young and healthy and leave his wife and little children behind if he made it all up?

to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments