LDS Honesty: Lying for the Lord - MormonThink

Fanny Alger was a teen-aged servant in the Smith's home. Joseph and Emma had "adopted" Fanny when she was about 16 years old (1833). She is believed to be either Joseph Smith's first polygamous "wife" or simply a sexual encounter. (The Church's essay, "Plural Marriage in Kirtland and Nauvoo," says it was a marriage, whereas Lawrence Foster said, "…contemporary evidence strongly suggests that Smith sustained sexual relations with Fanny Alger, it does not indicate that this was viewed either by Smith himself or by his associates at the time as a 'marriage.'" Dialogue Vol. 33 No. 1 pp. 184-86.) Critics believe he had an affair with her, was found out, and then introduced the concept of plural marriage in order to justify and continue his affair with her and then other women.Some historians record the date of the "marriage" as early as 1833, while others believe it was 1835, putting Fanny's age anywhere from 17-19. Fanny departed the Smith home sometime in 1836, the same year Oliver Cowdery was excommunicated for revealing Joseph Smith's "dirty, nasty, filthy affair of his and Fanny Alger's."Warren Parrish, the secretary of Joseph for a period of time, told Benjamin Johnson that he and Oliver Cowdery knew the report of an affair between Joseph and the girl to be true, for they "were spied upon and found together." (, 1903.)Critic's Note: Regardless of whether Joseph Smith's relations with Fanny Alger was merely a sexual encounter or a "marriage," it was adulterous. However, Joseph could only be , and even if it is claimed that the "marriage" was a symbolic "celestial only" sealing, the sealing power was not restored until April 1836, after Joseph's "marriage" to Fanny.Whether Joseph's "marriage" to Fanny Alger occurred in 1833 or 1835, it was illegal both under the laws of the land and under any theory of divine authority. Plural marriages are rooted in the notion of "sealing" for time and eternity. It is claimed that the "sealing power" was restored 3 April 1836 when Elijah appeared to Joseph and committed the sealing keys into his hands. (, The Joseph Smith Papers.) Until that time no one on earth had authority to "seal" Joseph and Fanny. As a result, his marriage to her was a nullity from the beginning both in time and eternity, and any sexual relationship he had with her was adulterous.As admitted in the LDS essay, "Plural Marriage in Kirtland and Nauvoo":

[C]areful estimates put the number [of Joseph Smith's wives] between 30 and 40.Following his marriage to Louisa Beaman and before he married other single women, Joseph Smith was sealed to a number of women who were already married.Estimates of the number of these sealings range from 12 to 14.
from the LDS website (also see footnote #24).In other words, Joseph "married" or was "sealed" to 12-14 women who were already legally wedded to other men at the time. Following is a list of Joseph's wives that we know of (some researchers estimate that the number may have been higher). A name indicated with an * was a living husband of the woman to whom Joseph Smith was "married" (From the website, )(The above table can be downloaded as a .)

quotes and an essay on lying--an obstacle to living life …

quotes, quotations, and sayings on lying, an obstacle to living life fully

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Perhaps, as some suggest, lying could be justified via double effect? As I noted, this question gets us to the heart of the matter, for double effect reasoning is appropriate when there is a moral principle forbidding the intentional bringing about of some harm. Some actions, which bring about that kind of harm nevertheless can be justified because the harm is not intended, but merely foreseen. Thus, assuming that the taking of human life is a harm, and that it is always wrong to intend that harm, nevertheless, many moralists defend some actions which result in death, because the death is not intended.

Epistemology (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

More examples of deception could be added to the list. But it already meets the definition of overkill. This is due to the constant artful prevarications and denial of Mormon polemicists. It's necessary to paint an unmistakably clear picture, which leaves one open to the charge of being insensitive. Mormon critics can't win. Either they don't present enough facts to establish their case, or the presentation of too many examples and voluminous documentation constitutes cruelty. It's a fine line. The LDS Church engages in deceit and dishonesty when it feels the need to protect its image, but complains when their deceit is made public. For another superb site on lying see Richard Packham's excellent essay on Lying for the Lord.

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Defined narrowly, epistemology is the study of knowledge and justified belief

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