Latter-day Saints in South Jordan didn’t need lobbyist/stake president Marty Stephens telling them to “follow the prophet” by voting against medical marijuana. In a church that stresses obedience, members already strive to follow.
For example, heavily LDS Utah County voted 65 percent against Prop. 2, but heavily non-LDS Summit County went 76 percent in favor.
Alas, telling people they are expected to “follow the prophet” not only makes for bad politics, it also makes for bad religion.
German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer observed: “The life of discipleship can only be maintained so long as nothing is allowed to come between Christ and ourselves. … The disciple always looks only to his master, never to Christ and the law, Christ and religion, Christ and the world. He avoids all such notions like the plague. Only by following Christ alone can he preserve a single eye. His eye rests wholly on the light that comes from Christ.”
Bonhoeffer got it right. We Latter-day Saints should listen carefully to our church president, but let’s follow only when we believe he is right. Anyone who preaches strict obedience to prophets is preaching fealty to someone who isn’t Christ. It’s a form of priestcraft.
Steve Warren, West Valley City