Monday, January 3, 2011

JANUARY 3RD EMAIL ....HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey Everyone,
Happy New Year! Well this past saturday was transfer calls and I will be staying here in Tampa 3 but it's sad for me to say that my companion Elder Alber will be leaving and going to be a zone leader down in Bonita Springs. I will be getting Elder Cook and I'm really excited. He was my zone leader in the St. Pete Zone and is from Idaho. He's a fun missionary and a hard worker. He and I have gone through similar things in the pre-mission life and have gotten close and are excited to be serving together. We are going to tear it up! School starts a week from today and I'm excited! Students will start moving back at the end of this week. Elder Spencer Robinson from Timpview will be arriving today around 4 and I will be visiting him at the mission home tonight. I'm so excited for him to be here, he's going to be great! This whole week Elder Alber and I have been bed ridden this WHOLE week with sinus infections. It's been rough but we are finally on the healthy side of the recovery. Yesterday at fast and testimony meeting it seemed that the focus was The Book of Mormon and I reflected back on Elder Holland's talk in the October 2009 Conference and the testimony he bore was the strongest about The Book of Mormon that I have ever heard and I would like to end with his spirit filled testimony.
"As one of a thousand elements of my own testimony of the divinity of the Book of Mormon, I submit this as yet one more evidence of its truthfulness. In this their greatest—and last—hour of need, I ask you: would these men blaspheme before God by continuing to fix their lives, their honor, and their own search for eternal salvation on a book (and by implication a church and a ministry) they had fictitiously created out of whole cloth?

Never mind that their wives are about to be widows and their children fatherless. Never mind that their little band of followers will yet be “houseless, friendless and homeless” and that their children will leave footprints of blood across frozen rivers and an untamed prairie floor. Never mind that legions will die and other legions live declaring in the four quarters of this earth that they know the Book of Mormon and the Church which espouses it to be true. Disregard all of that, and tell me whether in this hour of death these two men would enter the presence of their Eternal Judge quoting from and finding solace in a book which, if not the very word of God, would brand them as imposters and charlatans until the end of time? They would not do that! They were willing to die rather than deny the divine origin and the eternal truthfulness of the Book of Mormon.

For 179 years this book has been examined and attacked, denied and deconstructed, targeted and torn apart like perhaps no other book in modern religious history—perhaps like no other book in any religious history. And still it stands. Failed theories about its origins have been born and parroted and have died—from Ethan Smith to Solomon Spaulding to deranged paranoid to cunning genius. None of these frankly pathetic answers for this book has ever withstood examination because there is no other answer than the one Joseph gave as its young unlearned translator. In this I stand with my own great-grandfather, who said simply enough, “No wicked man could write such a book as this; and no good man would write it, unless it were true and he were commanded of God to do so.”

I Love You All

Elder Salmon

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