Thursday, April 28, 2011

Quotes - more Oil for our Lamps

This past Sunday Owenna shared a couple of wonderful, thought-provoking quotes as comments to the Relief Society & Sunday School lessons, and I've asked her to send them to us all for the blog.  They really made me think and ponder, as some of the best quotes are known to do!  Here they are in Owenna's own words:

I e-mailed my sister (Kathleen Bahr; retired BYU prof) to ask for her exact words. She told me I was actually quoting her paraphrase of Kiekegaard. Since I like hers better, I've included it as well as the original. I am grateful that these quotes that I have repeated to myself so often might be of help to someone else as well -- even though over time I have managed to garble them from the original.

"To the Christian, love is the works of love. To say that love is a feeling or anything of the kind is really an un-Christian conception of love. That is the aesthetic definition and therefore fits the erotic and everything of that nature. But to the Christian, love is the works of love. Christ's love was not an inner feeling, a full heart and what-not: it was the work of love which was his life." —Søren Kierkegaard on Christianity

Owenna's version of Kathleen's version of Kierkegaard:

"When Christ commanded us to love one another, I do not believe he was commanding our emotions, because they cannot, in fact, be commanded. I believe he was commanding our behavior. Love is an action verb. He was commanding us to behave in loving ways toward each other, even when love, as an emotion, is weak or absent."

Gale, visiting our RS from Kansas, also asked for the definition of faith that I attributed to Elder Gene R. Cook in SS. Well, I was wrong again - with my memory it is a wonder that I remembered the quote at all. It is properly attributed to Elder Stephen Nadault (Ensign, Dec. 95), not Elder Cook.

Elder Nadault pointed out that "when Joseph Smith re-translated parts of the Bible, he changed the word "substance" to "assurance," the way it is in Greek. So we could re-word the scripture to read 'Faith is having or accepting an assurance of things hoped for, and accepting evidence of things not seen.'"

When I read this years ago, it really turned on a light for me. My own paraphrase is: "Faith is a willingness to accept the assurances our Heavenly Father has given us as being sufficient."

Thanks Owenna for these great morsels to savor and ponder.  We can always use more oil to put in our spiritual lamps!

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