Pure Doctrine

Reading: “Keeping Doctrine Pure,” Mormon Identity, Mormon Channel

This weekend I got to listen to a few shows from the Mormon Channel that they just recently made available as podcasts. One show, Mormon Identity’s discussion on pure doctrine, particularly stood out to me. In this podcast they discuss what constitutes the accepted doctrine of the church, and why we should focus on those doctrines as we teach at church and in our homes.

Here are some interesting points (just from memory, so forgive me if they aren’t exact):

  • Mainstream doctrine constitutes teachings that appear in both the scriptures and in modern discourse by the leaders of the church
  • Any publication by the church is carefully vetted by general authorities to make sure it is in line with current doctrine.
  • Something that was said once by a church leader a long time ago may not necessarily be part of mainstream doctrine.
  • Something can be true and yet still not be taught as part of the mainstream doctrine of the church.
  • The mainstream doctrine of the church focuses on the most important concepts which will help us live the gospel.
  • Teaching doctrine is more effective at changing behavior than trying to change behavior directly.

All in all this was a great discussion. I do worry sometimes that too much false doctrine, that feels good, yet has no support in the teachings of the church, is passed about as truth. There is a reason the brethren are so careful to make sure that we stay focused on our core beliefs. I also know from experience that learning doctrine helps me to change the way I act more than charts and goals and so on. This will definitely be an important thing to remember as I teach my children.

Today I am going to try to see if there are times I can explain to my daughter why she should or shouldn’t do certain things, instead of just giving her orders.

What helps motivate you to change the way you act? Are there any doctrines of the church that are particularly special to you?

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